Lament of Hard Knocks: Orphans Can’t Stealth

The worst thing about Children’s Week: that it’s only a week long. Sure, it’s not got quite as many mini-achievements required for the meta, but one in particular can be quite troublesome. I’m looking at you, School of Hard Knocks.

For the non-PvP-savvy player, this achievement can be horrid. Now, that’s not to say that I want achievements handed out without some effort. But when it comes to quests ultimately required for What a Long, Strange Trip It’s Been, it seems the year-long effort alone is a pretty major accomplishment.

And then there’s the other reason why it seems totally whack — requiring certain feats within a PvP setting means encouraging players to play only for themselves, and not for the team as a whole. Case in point: my first several runs of Warsong Gulch resulted in stalemates. Half the players were unwilling to leave the home base, since they wanted to be there to return the flag once a brave soul came in for a shot. The other half waited it out in the enemy flag room, also unable to get anywhere because the entire ally team was camping out, too. 25 minutes of boredom.

The stalemate finally ended in another match when a kind-hearted (or possibly just annoyed or desperate) Night Elf entered our flag room, grabbed the flag, then dropped it. Repeatedly. Letting each of us take a shot at the return. Apparently the other team didn’t get it when I tried to return the favor; I got killed by the mob.

Read on for how I fared in AV, EotS and AB.

Alterac Valley also was a complete race against who should have been my teammates. Whoever could get to a tower first was able to do the assaulting. Every hordie for his or herself. Eye of the Storm wasn’t much better; I just got lucky to get to a flag when no one from the other side was camping it.

Then, there came Arathi Basin. For the wee hours up until the official end of Children’s Week, it was the bane of my existence. The flow of things basically went like this: Queue; wait an hour; join up with a group composed entirely of members who also need to assault a flag in order to get their achievement; get pwned by a premade that 5-caps before even half of us catch our needed break; get killed because my orphan gives away my stealthiness; start over again. Humiliating.

So, this is turning into a bit of a rant. Nerd-rage!! Ok, but seriously. Was this was Blizzard intended? The best way to go about alot of these objectives is by forming a group – so it seems that perhaps that is more of the point. Unfortunately, my procrastination for this aspect of the holiday left me in a precarious situation and bad timing for forming a group with my guildies. And so I say goodbye, at least for another year, to chances to add that coveted Violet Proto-Drake to my collection.

The only upside to all this – I did manage to score about 100 other random achievement points that I hadn’t previously scored since I don’t often PvP. There’s my silver lining.

How did everyone else fair in Children’s Week? Did anyone else have a hard time with School of Hard Knocks?


  1. I’m so glad I did this last year, back before there was a dungeon finder and people actually wanted to pvp. I had the most trouble with the EotS part of the achievement, as alliance on my server is quite horrible at pvp.

  2. spent 3 days, each time over an hour and a half in queue for EotS. only to then get yelled at for being ‘one of those useless pricks with the orphan’.

    pvp? fine. pve? okay. combine them an make meta achievements cross over? sure, as long as you do it where it doesn’t ruin each other’s bread and butter. this achievement rubs butter in everyone’s orange juice.

  3. Funny, the only one of the achi’s i ever had a problem with was the AV one, but once i got found the optimal route, np.

    Guess its due to being a paladin (=always the first out of mounted gates like AB, EotS, IoC and SotA and able to both survive a flagrun and nuke down enemy flaggers)

  4. I actually fared pretty well on school of hard knocks, I don’t know maybe I just got lucky, or the horde on my server is good enough that I had a lot of chances anyway…
    But if I have to choose I thought the Arath Basin was the hardest also, cause indeed it took ages to get through the queue and when the battle began I was constantly trying to normal pvp it and to get my assault on a base… It didn’t work out untill almost the end of the fight in which I was lucky enough to get the last part for my achievement..

  5. EoTS was the hardest one for me by one reason. As soon as I started capping the flag from the mdidle, either a Balance Druid or an Elemental Shaman showed up and used that skill with the Knockback.


  6. That really sucks. I hope you can finish it next year.
    Luckily I already had my proto-drake, since I started with children’s week last year, and so didn’t have to go through the annoyance again, but I remember absolutely hating the Alterac Valley one, since going against 39 other people to cap a tower is not easy.
    I completely agree with what Arthoul is saying. Blizzard really didn’t think it through having an achievement that requires bad PvPers to PvP in a way that isn’t necessarily the most tactically sound. This pisses off the people who are there for PvP and the people who are there for achievements and can’t get them.

    Finally the grammar police is in the house and would like you to see this…

  7. LOL, Phanttas, thank you for making my day :)

    Alot of achievements – alot is the KING OF ACHIEVEMENTS!

    …Actually, at first I thought that comment was made to one of the other comments. Then I searched the copy and saw it was my own mistake -_-;;. I’m also a bit of a grammar Nazi, though I am reminded that every writer needs an editor!

  8. Haha, I found that blog, not to long ago, from someone linking that post to someone else on twitter. Anyway, I’m glad I made your day! =D

  9. I am not a PVP player. I am so bad at it. And so, I am guilty of making my boyfriend have to do this last PVP achievement for me so I could get my Proto Drake. “But sweetie,” I said, “my birthday is this week, and this would be the most awesome birthday present ever!” He agreed to it, and thus I avoided this nightmare of an achievement! BWAHAHA! =3 That sucks that you didn’t get yours, Pixie! =(

  10. Great idea, Crissy. Yeah, my hubby recently quit playing WoW but he still has his account so I can fool around on it from time to time. I should have forced him to come on his healer to help me through it! Female charms FTW :D… but I didn’t! Regret!

  11. I was actually dreading this one as it was my last one…we all know how that goes. I did get incredibally lucky in WSG to knock down a FC and grab it. EotS..was sort of an embarrasment: got the flag first, captured and only realized AFTER the fact I’d forgotten to get my orphan out. AV..was a pain. That is until all us PvE’ers gathered in Frostwolf(?) tower and started trading flags. Ally /rude-ing Ally, Horde /rude-ing Horde, it was hilarious with a lot of PvEers /bowing. AB was pretty easy once I stopped going for the farm lol. 3rd trip around, got to the mine, capped it and bammo.

    I must say, this was a pretty horrid requirement, but I also look at it from Blizz’s point of view. There are us hardcore PvE’ers and this gave (I refuse to say made, since it’s only an optional acheivement!) us a chance to do what WoW is fundamentally all about: Horde v. Alliance. It’s a nice diversion but all in all, I must say I will never EVER gain PvP lol.

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