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Addon Spotlight: Fizzwidget's Feed-O-Matic - Sun, 08 Jun 2008 19:00:00 EST
It's been awhile since we talked about Gazmik Fizzwidget's little trinkets. As I promised in this week's Macro Anatomy, here is an addon designed specifically for Hunters and their pets.

handles feeding your pet, automating the process of opening your bag, finding food and stuffing into your pets face. The part I find most useful is the reminder it creates for feeding my hungry wolf. I've configured the addon to create an emote when I feed my pet, just so everyone knows how humane I am in my treatment of a pet I ask to fight on my behalf. (Ironic I know, but it helps me sleep at night.)

You can configure this addon to avoid foods needed for quests, anything that provides a "Well-Fed" buff and/or is used for Cooking recipes. You have complete control over what food your pet is allowed to eat, through a series of slash commands, so with just a bit of configuration Feed-O-Matic can streamline the entire process.

Come back after the break for some tips on setting up your new pet-feeding addon.

Continue reading Addon Spotlight: Fizzwidget's Feed-O-Matic

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Reader WoWspace of the Week: Ten - Sun, 08 Jun 2008 18:30:00 EST

By popular demand, we're returning one of the reader favorite columns. For as many different World of Warcraft players as there are out there, there are equally as many different WoWspaces for people to game in. Each week, we'll bring you a WoWspace sent in by one of our readers and let them tell you all about it. Would you like to share your own personal space? Just drop some pictures and your description to us here at readerwowspace AT!

This week we have a WoWspace that includes not just our regular reader, Ten, but also Ten's husband's WoWspace so that they can kind of game "face to face" together. Curious? Read on for all the info, courtesy of Ten, aka Laelvalin / Vijanwi!

My workspace is truly a bubble of space in itself. I sit directly across my husband's computer desk, and together, our computer 'island' (flooded with light from the huge windows, hiss!) takes up a third of the living room. Which I incidentally think is just the right amount.

I've been playing WoW since 2005 and have severe altitis, but my two mains (yes, two) are my Warlock Laelvalin and my Warrior Vijanwi. Prot all the way from level 1 on. Altitis has a side effect of masochism, I guess. I raid a little and level alts a lot, but I'm really in the game for the RP with my awesome guildies. My husband tried to get into the game as well, but he just can't find much fun in it. A shame, since our computer space is so optimal for beating each other up on screen.

Continue reading Reader WoWspace of the Week: Ten

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All the World's a Stage: How to be a death knight - Sun, 08 Jun 2008 17:55:00 EST
When you decide to roleplay, a whole new world of imagination opens up to you -- soon you realize that all the World of Warcraft is a stage, and all the orcs and humans merely players.

Last week, we took a look at how roleplaying a death knight will be different from roleplaying other classes, because death knights come pre-packaged with elements of a backstory for you to flesh out: they have, for whatever reason, at one time joined forces with the Lich King, learned from him how to be a death knight, and now are breaking free of his influence and striking out against him.

As Medeni pointed out in her comments, however, this can potentially lead to a kind of unlikable "celebrity in rehab" type of personality. Imagine, if you will, the death knight known as Marisoo: formerly a paladin of the Light, she sought to destroy the Scourge that plagued her homeland of Lordaeron, but eventually, as she was consumed with vengeance and hatred, she joined the Lich King instead of destroying him. Having learned to turn corpses into slavering ghouls and call forth armies of the undead, she eventually thought better of the whole "wickedly destroy all life" thing and decided to destroy the Lich King after all, only this time she would *use his own power against him!* Muahaha.

As you can see, there are some pretty obvious flaws in this idea. First of all, the first half of it is almost a direct copy of Arthas' own tale, and, while I can certainly appreciate the power of that story, and the possibility that other paladins could have gone through something similar, roleplayers who want to play a death knight character must realize that it's going to get old fast. Just as death knights aren't just human paladins, we can't all go around copying Arthas, brooding on how moody and wicked we've become. We have to come up with new ideas that fit the death knight mould.

Continue reading All the World's a Stage: How to be a death knight

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Fake guilds in WoW - Sun, 08 Jun 2008 17:00:00 EST
I don't like to call attention to trolls on the internet; I think they're vile little beasts who need to be put out old-school DnD style with a roll of a six sided die and a cast of a flaming arrow. But one thing in particular some trolls are doing has caught my attention: a fake WoW guild being as annoying as possible on the forums.

I won't name this guild's name, or tell you where they're from, since I don't need them tracking me down in game or getting a bigger head. What they do to annoy the frack out of everyone (and that was my obligatory Battlestar Galactica reference for the week) is pretty lame - they post updates to bosses they haven't killed. For instance, right now they're claiming they've downed Brutallus. They even have a clearly photoshopd kill picture to prove it. However they haven't, and if you look at their armory profiles no one in the guild is above Kara level gear.

This guild will go and post in progression threads, taking up page after page of space. Eventually these threads have to be closed since they become full, and new ones started. However the trolls are right there to start everything again. 99% of the people on the realm ignore them, however there is always the 1% that gives them the attention they desire.

What can be done about this?

Continue reading Fake guilds in WoW

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Ask a Lore Nerd: The world may never know - Sun, 08 Jun 2008 16:00:00 EST

Welcome to Ask a Lore Nerd, WoW Insider's newest weekly feature column. Have a question about the story and lore of the Warcraft universe? Click the Comments link below, ask your question, and blogger/columnist Alex Ziebart will answer you in a future installment!

Let's leap right into things, and see what Tyler wants to know, shall we?

Question: If the Ashbringer is really the Light's answer to Frostmourne, then why isn't anyone trying to use it, or destroy it? Is it because that Tirion Fordring has it? If he does, in WotLK then, he needs our help to weaken the Lich King and let him use it?

Answer: Nobody is using the Ashbringer right now because nobody has the Ashbringer in its true, Light-blessed form. Last we knew, the Ashbringer was still in Highlord Mograine's hands in a Corrupted form. The latest Know Your Lore covers the events leading up to that in a little more detail. Currently, we either need to purify The Ashbringer or forge a new one to be able to use it against the Lich King.

Continue reading Ask a Lore Nerd: The world may never know

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Badges in Wrath - Sun, 08 Jun 2008 15:00:00 EST
As we were promised, the latest Blizzcast episode talked some about the Badge of Justice system, and where they want to take it in Wrath of the Lich King. Specifically, Tigole said the following:

  • Badges will definitely be back in Wrath, in some form.
  • Like how it's ended up in BC, they want badges to appear in both Heroics and raids.
  • However, they want to stratify it more, so it's not just one gigantic pool of items. (They also want to spread the vendors around the world, so it's not just "one dude in Shattrath and one dude out on the Isle of Quel'Danas"; this sounds like an annoyance to me, and at any rate will not make a real difference in how the system works.) Proposed stratification options include:
    • "A token from different levels of content" as well as badges that would need to be turned in for the different levels of items
    • Different kinds of badges

Continue reading Badges in Wrath

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70 Orc Hunter running for Connecticut legislature - Sun, 08 Jun 2008 14:00:00 EST
More politicians are coming out of the WoW closet. Jeanne Stevens is a WoW player -- with a 70 Orc Hunter, a 58 Troll Shaman, and a 53 Blood Elf Rogue -- and a Republican running for the Connecticut state legislature. And she freely admits it in a new interview with Wandering Goblin, as covered by our sister site, Massively. Her hunter is balanced between marksman and survival, her shaman specs elemental (close to my heart!), and her rogue climbs the assassination talent tree. Will she be able to master the beasts in her political race? (Okay, you go ahead and insert your own shaman or rogue wordplay here.) Maybe she'll hold some in-game speeches or rallies. She could hold forth on top of Orgrimmar's bank, or maybe lead a raid to Stormwind as a metaphor.

Is it surprising that a Republican chooses Horde? I think you could make a case for either faction going with either political party. Personally, I love to see that she's middle-aged and a woman, which defies Blizzard's assumptions about the majority of WoW gamers. She also chooses pirates over ninjas. I'm not sure there's a political comment there, but I'm sure someone will show me the light.

[Thanks to Wandering Goblin via Massively.]

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LotRO-style achievements coming to Wrath? - Sun, 08 Jun 2008 13:00:00 EST

One thing I like about the history of MMO development so far (and game development in general, I suppose) is the tradition of borrowing the best parts of other games for your own games. Heck, WoW (as it's often said) had very little in the way of sheer newness when it was launched; rather, it polished and perfected concepts and trends started in Everquest, Dark Age of Camelot, and others. If you are willing to do a little interpretation on some leaked screenshots from the Wrath alpha, it looks like Blizzard will be adapting another feature into WoW, this one familiar from Lord of the Rings Online (and Xbox Live): achievements.

Basically, an achievement is an unlockable something, unlocked by reaching a certain goal. That's a vague definition, so here are some example goals hinted at by what's leaked out:

  • Reveal the whole map of Outland
  • Do at least one daily quest a day for five days
  • Get a character to level 80 on both factions

Achievements are clearly not yet implemented, even in the beta; many of the numbers in the screenshots are placeholder values, and the rewards for completing the achievements, whatever they may be, are completely unknown. It does look like there is a point system - the UI implies that each of the above achievements is rewarded with 50 points - but what might these points be used to purchase? Well, gear, most likely, but it's also possible that they may be a way to get prestige items, like special mounts or titles. Either way, I welcome yet another advancement path; more importantly, achievements are just plain fun!

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WoW Moviewatch: The last ride of Blackwing Lair - Sun, 08 Jun 2008 12:00:00 EST

Continuing on our unintentional weekend of Baron Soosdon, we came across an older video of his that isn't a music video! Instead, it turned out to be an artistic "epic raid" video of two guilds, The Beastro and Beyond Oblivion, kicking buttocks pre-TBC. Blackwing Lair: The Last Ride weaves in battles with cut scenes containing plot elements combined with the sounds in-game. What interested me more was the camera that he used, which allowed him to get distance shots.


If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

Previously on Moviewatch ...

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McAfee report reveals the most dangerous web domains - Sun, 08 Jun 2008 11:00:00 EST

In an era where clicking on the wrong link while browsing the web could mean your account will get hacked, and one of your guild members clicking on the wrong link means your guild bank could get emptied as well, it's always good to protect yourself and keep abreast of web security issues.

In that vein, it's worth checking out a new report released by McAfee called Mapping the Mal Web Report Revisited. It tested 9.9 Million websites in 265 domains to find out which ones had a higher risk of exposing visitors to malware, spam, and malicious attacks via a red, yellow, and green system.

Continue reading McAfee report reveals the most dangerous web domains

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Around Azeroth: Wish you were here - Sun, 08 Jun 2008 10:00:00 EST

Undead priest Teansamas of Argent Dawn-EU was on a 15-level holiday in beautiful Stranglethorn Vale when he discovered a native that was a little less hostile than usual. Following the tradition of tourists everywhere, he posed for a picture. You can tell the naga is embarassed, though -- he's turning away from Teansamas, presumably to call over some of his friends to zerg the scene and save him from being in a vacation scrapbook. Not seen: three level 70 rogues hiding behind each of those three trees, waiting to steal Tean's wallet and then slit his throat. Ah, beach towns. Some things never change.

Do you have any unusual World of Warcraft images that are just collecting dust in your screenshots folder? We'd love to see it on Around Azeroth! Sharing your screenshot is as simple as e-mailing with a copy of your shot and a brief explanation of the scene. You could be featured here next!

Remember to include your player name, server and/or guild if you want it mentioned. We prefer full screen shots without the UI showing -- use alt-Z to remove it. And remember, we're all full on sunsets, Netherstorm sky shots, and pictures of that water glitch in Stormwind.

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Blood Pact: Gearing a Lock for Karazhan, part 1 - Sun, 08 Jun 2008 10:00:00 EST

'Grats on your new 70 Warlock! You've just turned experience into gold (at least until WotLK lands) and unlocked the wonderful world of BC raiding and Arena PvP. What do you do now? Gear up, of course!

I've touched on some general gearing guidelines for the pre-Karazhan Warlock in "Locked and loaded", it's time now to drill down to the specific pieces, especially since the introduction of Battlegear with patch 2.4.

Continue reading Blood Pact: Gearing a Lock for Karazhan, part 1

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Hybrid Theory: Shadow Priests and the Wrath Alpha - Sun, 08 Jun 2008 09:00:00 EST

Welcome to Hybrid Theory, where we discuss all things hybrid in the World of Warcraft. Hybrid Theory is brought to you each week by columnist/blogger Alex Ziebart.

I really thought my excitement over Wrath of the Lich King would fade after the initial onslaught of alpha information and just come back around launch time, but that hasn't really been the case. It's been a pretty consistent type of excitement, and I pretty much devour every piece of information I can find.

We've talked about Druids already, but while I love Hybrids in general, my Shadow Priest is my main and my first love. Yes yes, I'm sure some of you still disagree with Priests being Hybrids, but I'm of the opinion that they are so I shall continue. If you want to disagree, do so in the Comments section below.

I adore playing my Shadow Priest, but I think all Shadow Priest players agree with me when I say there are some definite issues with the class on some level or another. Why don't we take a seat and see what might be on the devs' minds, eh?

Continue reading Hybrid Theory: Shadow Priests and the Wrath Alpha

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Breakfast Topic: Shame - Sun, 08 Jun 2008 08:00:00 EST

I am not ashamed to be a World of Warcraft player. I spend on average about two hours a day playing the game. That takes into account the weekends when I overindulge and the weekdays when I may log in for a few arenas, if at all. I have accomplishments in-game that I'm proud of, and I find it really thrilling to share my thoughts and experiences with the readers of WoW Insider. I proudly wear geeky, WoW-oriented shirts, and proclaim myself as a gamer.

Every once in a while I think to myself that I should do something different with my time. But then I remember that it's some good clean (not to mention cheap) fun that I can share with my friends and family. On top of that, I really enjoy my play time. For an extra-added benefit, I can't remember the last time I was actually bored, with the game or anything else.

An interesting news article hit my inbox today. Dr. Jerald Block is a psychiatrist who specializes in treating pathological computer use. His most stunning statement was that many of his clients were more ashamed of their World of Warcraft addictions than obsessions with internet porn. I can't quite wrap my brain around that.

Dr. Block also believes that previous studies of gaming addiction have been focused on the wrong group. He claims that adults, rather than teens, obsess over online gaming. He is probably right on both accounts. This may lead to a paradigm shift in gaming research.

Do you ever find yourself ashamed of playing WoW?


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Forum Post of the Day: Let's be friends - Sun, 08 Jun 2008 03:47:00 EST

I spend an awful lot of time sifting through the various forums for quality candidates for Forum Post of the Day. My usual suspects were pretty lackluster today, so I ventured into some unknown territory. As I flipped through some of the posts in the Role Playing forum, I was briefly reminded of folks running around game shops with their arms crossed at their chests saying something to the effect of "you can't see me." I decided to give it a shot anyway.

Yitrana of Twisting nether began an in-character plea for peace between the Horde and Alliance forces. The story begins with a note posted in he World's End Tavern in Shattrath City:

Continue reading Forum Post of the Day: Let's be friends

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Don't get stuck in the Sunwell Plateau - Sat, 07 Jun 2008 20:00:00 EST

I've found recently in my raiding of the Sunwell Plateau (here after and forever more referred to as SPLAT) that there are a few places folks shouldn't go.

Kalecgos is one of them, that boss should just be wiped off the map. He's just that annoying. But baring that, there are these lovely little hedges placed around the instance. Don't go on those. If you do, you might just make your raid leader and Warlocks scream at you.

If you get on one of these hedges and step the right way, you'll find yourself stuck behind them (click the image above for a high resolution version), unable to get out. The only way to get out is for you to hearth, for a Mage portal to be placed behind the hedge, or for a Warlock to summon you out. All the while you've taken up a good couple minutes of raid time.

Continue reading Don't get stuck in the Sunwell Plateau

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Arcane Brilliance: Leveling your Mage, 20-40 - Sat, 07 Jun 2008 18:00:00 EST

Each week at some point on Saturday, Arcane Brilliance brings Mages together from every corner of Azeroth to discus how awesome we are. Five seconds later, the discussion degenerates into a whole lot of whining about Warlocks. Someone ninjas all the manna biscuits, a scuffle breaks out, a million Frost Novas erupt at once, and the very fabric of the universe is sundered when everyone tries to Blink away simultaneously. Then the next Saturday arrives and we get together to do it all again. Secretly, you see, we enjoy sundering the universe. We're Mages. That's just how we roll.

Level 20! Grats! Last week we talked ourselves through the first twenty levels of Magehood, from our humble beginnings slaying kobolds in Elwynn Forest or boars in Durotar to sheeping adds in The Deadmines or Wailing Caverns. This week we'll take our maturing Mages through the next twenty levels, all the way to level 40, halfway to Arthas. Numerically, anyway.

When you ding 20, you've reached what could reasonably be defined as your first major milestone within World of Warcraft. You have 11 talent points under your belt, which means you likely have a clearly defined specialty for you Mage, whether it be Frost, Fire, or Arcane. You've now got access to many of the spells that set you apart from other classes, and are learning how to use them. You've hopefully been into an instanced dungeon or two, and have some grasp on your role within a group dynamic. And now, at level 20, you get to do a whole mess of new junk, and all of it is awesome.

Join me after the jump for a more specific quantification of how awesome.

Continue reading Arcane Brilliance: Leveling your Mage, 20-40

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The Light and How to Swing It: Levels 51-60 - Sat, 07 Jun 2008 17:00:00 EST

This used to be the home stretch. In the old days, hitting level 51 was when players got their second wind after tiring out from the usually dreary 41 to 50. Now, however, it's just another bump in the road, with the endgame barely in sight. With Wrath of the Lich King looming over the horizon, the idea is to get through these levels as quickly as possible. Move along now, there's nothing to see here. Well, maybe a little, so we've cooked up this handy guide to see you through this not-quite-home-stretch.

If you've gotten your Paladin to this point, congratulations. Give yourself a pat on the back for sticking through with what is generally considered to be a boring challenging class. I got through my Paladin on a love-hate relationship. I love the class but I hate how slow everything can be. If you've gotten this far, you likely know what I mean. Seal, judge, seal, auto-attack, and alt-tab to read WoW Insider. If you're still deciding on whether to play the class, Elizabeth's guide from 1 to 20 is a good place to look. There's also the stretch from 21-40 for those of you who've decided to see if the free mount is worth it (I like mine a lot, thank you very much).

Continue reading The Light and How to Swing It: Levels 51-60

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Macro Anatomy: Hunter love - Sat, 07 Jun 2008 16:00:00 EST
We recently had a request for some Hunter macro help, so I thought I would present some unique little gems for you ranged DPS types to use. First of all, let it be known that we we have talked about Hunter macros here before, more than once actually. Secondly, a good source of Hunter-specific macros would be WoWWiki's Useful Hunter Macro page. However, given those resources, you may find yourself wanting more.

I turned back to the World of Warcraft forums, where I, once again, found some of Belleboom's work. The witty troll from the Earthen Ring server has written some useful macros for hunters, complete with slightly silly descriptions.

I'll start us off with this macro, which determines what type of pet you have, and uses the appropriate ability:

Dive/Dash/Growl/Wrench!: Casts Dive if you have an owl, dash if you have a cat, or growl if you have anything else... wrench optional.

  • /cast [pet:owl] Dive; [pet:cat] Dash; [pet] Growl
Next, a macro that feeds or uses Mend Pet depending on your current status:

Feed/Mend Pet:
Based on combat status.
  • /cast [combat] Mend Pet; [nocombat] Feed Pet
  • /use [nocombat] <FoodLinkHere>
Come on back after the break for a few more.

Continue reading Macro Anatomy: Hunter love

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Poll: Does story matter to you? - Sat, 07 Jun 2008 15:00:00 EST
If you couldn't tell from Know Your Lore and Ask a Lore Nerd, I'm a really big fan of learning the story behind a game, or the littlest details of fantasy worlds. The creativity that drives the story and the little pieces of the puzzle that bring everything together fascinates me. Even though I'm enthralled with the story behind worlds, I don't let it get in the way of my enjoyment of the game, either. I may really, really like a lore character, but if the game tells me to kill them for one reason or another, even if it's loot, I'll probably do it. I still want to advance my character from a gameplay stanpoint, after all. It's an MMO!

I know that a lot of people play WoW and similar games and have no interest in story at all, too. Who's Arthas? Who cares! That's perfectly fine. Play the game how you enjoy it. While knowing the story of the world you play in helps, you don't really need it to enjoy many aspects of the game.

Out of pure curiosity, I've made a poll to see just how big the divide is between those types of people. Are you the kind of person that reads quest text, or do you look at the objective and move on? Do you know obscure details about characters that a lot of people wouldn't? Do you know why you go to the dungeons you do? A simple Yes or No poll is tucked behind the link below. Satisfy my curiosity!

Continue reading Poll: Does story matter to you?

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