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Patch 5.3 hotfixes for June 14 - Fri, 14 Jun 2013 19:00:00 EST

New hotfixes for patch 5.3 have just been updated to the official blog. Today's round is short, sweet, and includes one change that should make raiders in LFR breath a small sigh of relief.

Rygarius
Creatures
  • Kor'kron Commanders are now immune to charms.
Raids, Dungeons and Scenarios
  • Throne of Thunder
    • Lei Shen
      • Bouncing Bolts that do not impact with a player will no longer cause Unharnessed Power to spawn on Raid Finder difficulty.
Pet Battles
  • PvP Pet Battles are now required to last at least a minute before the match is eligible for experience to be awarded
Items
  • Meta and blue gem sockets have been added to helmets awarded from Heroic Scenarios. Bonuses on the helmets have been reduced slightly to offset the addition of those sockets.
Brawler's Guild
  • Razorgrin should no longer slowly regenerate health.


That's a pretty big nerf to Lei Shen, even if it is for LFR only. Do you think the nerf was warranted? Do you think other bosses should be adjusted as well?

Patch 5.3 hotfixes for June 14 originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 14 Jun 2013 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WoW Moviewatch: A message from the War Chief - Fri, 14 Jun 2013 18:00:00 EST

A message from the War Chief (sic) is the newest video from Ryan Cant. In it, Garrosh desperately tries to convinced the harried, oppressed members of the Horde that everything's fine. Nobody's beating a rebellious path to Orgrimmar, bent on the complete dispossession of the standing despot. Nope, it's just a little thing off in a distant land, nothing to worry about here.

I enjoyed the video, and I think it's a good idea. The only thing that distracted me was Garrosh's voice. When you use a comedic voice, you generally do it to make the character somewhat a buffoon. I had the sense that the video might have been a little better played straight, with the idea that Garrosh was actually trying to convince us that everything's fine.
Interested in the wide world of machinima? We have new movies every weekday here on WoW Moviewatch! Have suggestions for machinima we ought to feature? Toss us an email at moviewatch@wowinsider.com.


WoW Moviewatch: A message from the War Chief originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 14 Jun 2013 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Which race has the best animations? - Fri, 14 Jun 2013 17:00:00 EST

When I was struggling not too long ago over what race to make my new caster, the collected wisdom of Twitter seemed to distill into one simple principle: Choose whatever race you think has the best casting animations. Ultimately, I made my choice based on a corollary, choosing a race whose casting animations carried whiffs of a nostalgically sweet time in my WoW life. Objective achieved: What I see over and over while I play makes me happy.

Here's your chance to represent with your favorites. Casting animations, melee animations, resting animations -- cast your vote in multiple polls after the break.

Continue reading Which race has the best animations?

Which race has the best animations? originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 14 Jun 2013 17:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Legendary catch-up coming in Patch 5.4 - Fri, 14 Jun 2013 16:00:00 EST

For those of us who have not yet begun our Legendary item-building, not hung out with Wrathion at all, and not collected the relevant sigils and points and such, the idea of starting out now is daunting to say the least. But fear not! Blizzard Lead Systems Designer Greg "Ghostcrawler" Street has tweeted with some excellent news:

I think we'll all agree that this is a pretty fantastic bit of news for players who want to catch up with the Legendary, perhaps having let it slide, and players with alts who might like some orange things in their life. But it's inevitable that this will also result in a slew of comments that legendaries should be hard to get, should require months of work, and should not have catch-up systems. That doing all those things makes them less legendary, not to mention the legendaries-for-all approach that has been ushered in with Mists of Pandaria. Which side of the fence do you sit on? Or are you awkwardly perched upon said fence like me? I am still not sure if one of my characters will ever have one.

Legendary catch-up coming in Patch 5.4 originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 14 Jun 2013 16:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Review of Dawn of the Aspects - Fri, 14 Jun 2013 15:00:00 EST

On Monday, the fifth and final installment of Dawn of the Aspects, by Richard Knaak, will be available for purchase. For those that have been waiting to download and nab the entire publication in one go, your wait is just about over. For those of us that have been reading since the beginning, it marks the end of what has been, honestly, one of the strangest tales to come out of the Warcraft stable in quite some time.

While I could simply review part five of the book, talk about my impressions and what the installment was like, to me it makes far more sense to talk about the book as a whole, now that I've finished the whole thing. After all, this was a different kind of experiment -- an entirely digital publication doled out in monthly installments for a small fee. Was the experiment worth it? Did the story hold water in the end? And perhaps most importantly -- was the story any good?

Continue reading Review of Dawn of the Aspects

Review of Dawn of the Aspects originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 14 Jun 2013 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Blossoming Ancient pet added to Blizzard store - Fri, 14 Jun 2013 13:30:00 EST

If Withers, the Ruby Sapling, and the Teldrassil Sapling just aren't cutting it in terms of tree pets for you (and how could you not want another tree pet? I'm stumped at the very thought!) then you're in for a treat. Blizzard has just added the Blossoming Ancient to its digital store for $10. The Blossoming Ancient is a miniature version of the great Ancients that protect and guard Azeroth's forests and natural landscapes. If you don't think it's cute enough on its own, get this: it changes with the seasons. You can check out previews of the seasonal forms on the purchase page.

If you haven't yet made the foray into digital pet purchases, now might just be the time to branch out! ... Okay, I just really wanted to make that pun. As with all digital pet and mount purchases, the Blossoming Ancient will be available to all the characters on your account. Take good care of your little Ancient, hero of Azeroth!

Blossoming Ancient pet added to Blizzard store originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 14 Jun 2013 13:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Target audience of Flex Raiding shouldn't min / max group size - Fri, 14 Jun 2013 13:00:00 EST

One of the things that I've been wondering about the new Flex Raid system is how it will handle groups of players figuring out the optimal min and max of personnel for individual boss encounters. This is something that I'm not sure there's a way around -- one way or another groups are going to devise what works best for them, and inevitably size their raids around that number. Of course they (hopefully) won't be aghast to take an extra person or two, but still, I believe therein min/maxing can be stated as a law: If players have the opportunity to mix/max a variable, they will.

Ghostcrawler chimes in:



While I get what he's saying that the target audience for Flex Raids isn't the type of players that would want to min/max the raid size and comp, I think the door is still left wide open for it to happen. And therein lies the issue, one that I'm not sure El Ghosto can fix -- players naturally evolve from no optimization, to a little optimization, to a lot of optimization (and min/maxing is a primary form of that optimization). I'm interested to know what, if any, road blocks Blizzard will include in this to lessen the reward of that organic growth (to use a term that's way too popular these days).

Continue reading Target audience of Flex Raiding shouldn't min / max group size

Target audience of Flex Raiding shouldn't min / max group size originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 14 Jun 2013 13:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Phat Loot Phriday: Grievous Gladiator's Dragonhide Helm - Fri, 14 Jun 2013 12:00:00 EST

"It's not that I'm not happy to see you," Lolegolas carefully said. "But what on Azeroth are you wearing?"

"You look like a stag beetle," Throgg said. "Like an angry, fuzzy stag beetle."

The druid looked down at his outfit and then plucked the helmet off his head. "Oh. It's the Grievous Gladiator's Dragonhide Helm. I picked it up while fighting in the arena."

"Were you fighting stag beetles?" Throgg asked. "Did you skin them and wear their buggy hats as a prize?"

The Gilnean known as Not Spot growled slightly, then laughed. "No. Just other fighters. It's how I paid my way to catch up with you two. My kitty fu has grown strong."

"Also," the blood elf interjected, "it'd be good camouflage for infiltrating Silithus. It's a harsh helmet. A bug helmet."

Item Note: While the Grievous Gladiator's Dragonhide Helm obviously looked pretty good, I can't help but dwell on its beetle-like nature. I think this might be my favorite druid hat since the days of the moose horns.
Phat Loot Phriday brings you the scoop on some of the most ... interesting ... loot in the World of Warcraft, often viewed through the eyes of the stalwart Throgg and indelible Lolegolas. Suggest items you think we should feature by emailing mikeg@wowinsider.com.

Phat Loot Phriday: Grievous Gladiator's Dragonhide Helm originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 14 Jun 2013 12:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The Queue: Writer's Block - Fri, 14 Jun 2013 11:00:00 EST

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Matthew Rossi will be your host today.

Sometimes I just can't come up with a good intro to the Queue. I don't have any music I really want to play, I can't really do a huge post full of spoilers about Man of Steel, so it's basically just me, sitting here, trying and failing to come up with anything clever.

In lieu of clever, let's just answer some questions.

Pmarsico9 said
I bet Malkorak is actually a dreadlord.......that's my guess. You heard it here first. Remember how Balnazzar manipulated the entire Scarlet Crusade?

Well I hope this the beginning of the re-emergence of the Legion.

I have no evidence that he's not a dreadlord, aside from him seeming fairly orcish in his appearances in Tides of War and the expansion to date. I kind of hope he's not, because frankly we've done that bit twice now with Balnazzar and Mal'Ganis. Sometimes people do evil things for their own reasons, they don't have to be manipulated into it by demons.

Continue reading The Queue: Writer's Block

The Queue: Writer's Block originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 14 Jun 2013 11:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Around Azeroth: We've been having fun all summer long - Fri, 14 Jun 2013 10:00:00 EST

Goblins might be a race of ugly little green people with giant hands and horrifying taste in decor, but you've got to admire their self-confidence. These beach-partying gobbos aren't ashamed to strut their stuff and dance around in their bathing suits. Admittedly, whatever sort of liquor is in those bottles on the right might be helping them lose their inhibitions. Sober people don't usually stay at the beach during a rainstorm. (Thanks to submitter Arugadh of The Brotherhood of Iron on Wyrmrest Accord [US-A] for the screenshot!)

Want to see your own screenshot here? Send it to aroundazeroth@wowinsider.com. We strongly prefer full-sized pictures with no UI or names showing. Include "Azeroth" in the subject line to ensure your submission dodges email spam filters; if you'd like to be credited, also include your name, guild and realm.

Around Azeroth: We've been having fun all summer long originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 14 Jun 2013 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Holinka comments on PvE gear in PvP in patch 5.4 - Fri, 14 Jun 2013 09:00:00 EST

Blizzard's Senior PvP Designer Brian Holinka has taken to Twitter to make an announcement about just exactly how PvE gear is going to work in PvP come patch 5.4.
There's likely to be a new season with patch 5.4, given how the previous ones have played out, and the fact that we have new tiers of gear. So when that new season begins, the PvP gear, which is the Grievous Gladiator gear, will be item level 522. This will put it a fairly substantial 26 item levels above the downscaled PvE gear, which will sit at item level 496.

As Holinka has mentioned in the past, they want PvE gear to catch up to PvP gear slowly. And it makes sense, nobody is able to step into a season and be fully conquest geared in the first week. So, a player in PvP gear's average item level will probably increase in line with that of a PvE geared player, with the notable difference that, of course, PvP players will have PvP Power on their gear. It's also worth noting that this scaling occurs only in PvP instances, so arenas, battlegrounds and rated battlegrounds. Whether it will take PvPers 26 weeks to become fully geared remains to be seen, but it will feel good for PvP gear to be decently ahead of PvE gear for a while at least.

Holinka comments on PvE gear in PvP in patch 5.4 originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 14 Jun 2013 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Breakfast Topic: How much has WoW cost you? - Fri, 14 Jun 2013 08:00:00 EST

If you've been playing World of Warcraft since it launched in 2004, that's eight years of subscription fees, expansion pack purchases, and character transfers -- not to mention the cost of tshirts, vanity pets, BlizzCon tickets, and any other swag you might have picked up along the way. And while we don't pay much a month, it definitely adds up -- ka-king! -- to the tune of $179.88 a year if you pay month to month. And, while I definitely think I've gotten my money's worth, the amount I've spent on WoW over the years adds up to a frankly embarrassing sum.

And instead of sharing that figure with you, I'm going to segue into today's Breakfast Topic: just how much have you spent on WoW since you started playing? And, in the end, has it been worth it?

Breakfast Topic: How much has WoW cost you? originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 14 Jun 2013 08:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 5.4 PTR: No Stromgarde scenario - Thu, 13 Jun 2013 20:00:00 EST

Brand new Blizzard Community Manager Lore has posted to clarify the datamined information on the Stromgarde scenario. Unfortunately it seems like our enthusiasm may have been a little misplaced, as Lore explains:
Lore
Just to avoid any further confusion, there is no Stromgarde scenario in patch 5.4, and what you've seen datamined is little more than a developer experiment with a stand-in name.

This happens quite often; developers will put something quick together to test out some new tech or functionality, and the remnants occasionally slip through to the PTR files where dataminers can get ahold of them.

So, just to be clear, there is currently nothing related to Stromgarde in production. That's not to say it's a location we'll never revisit, but should that happen, it will not be in 5.4, and the recently datamined files will not be part of it.

Yet again, it's a good reason to take datamined information with a pinch of salt. Don't assume that, just because something is in the files, that it's in the patch. Even something being on the PTR doesn't mean it's going to make it into the patch. So, while it's fine to be excited about new content, it's best not to take datamining as gospel.

Nonetheless, this leads to some interesting speculation. Just exactly what was this experiment? What else might the scenario technology be used for? And are there other scenarios you'd like to see? We'd love to see some more of the old world turned into scenarios.

Patch 5.4 PTR: No Stromgarde scenario originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 13 Jun 2013 20:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 5.4 PTR: Pandaren Treasure Noodle Cart - Thu, 13 Jun 2013 19:00:00 EST

Sometimes you get hungry. And sometimes when you're hungry you want food that will give you 1007 in a useful stat for one hour. Apparently in patch 5.4, that food will exist, and it will be delicious noodles served piping hot from a noodle cart. Available in both 10 and 25 person varieties, the noodle cart (or Grand noodle cart) is taught by a recipe - where this recipe is learned is up in the air at this point, it could be on a vendor, it could be a drop. We know that both recipes are bind on pickup, so it probably won't be something you see on the AH.

Now, it's possible that the PTR is just giving out odd numbers for stat food at the moment - current Pandaria recipes are listed as giving far higher stats on the PTR than they grant on live. So always remember, it's the PTR, don't be surprised if it changes before it goes live. Still, even if it's just another way to make stat food, who doesn't love a noodle cart?

Patch 5.4 PTR: Pandaren Treasure Noodle Cart originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 13 Jun 2013 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WoW Moviewatch: Nobody's Quest, Episode 3 - Thu, 13 Jun 2013 18:00:00 EST

One of the defining aspects of the death knight class is their inimitable voice. That hollow, Darth-esque echo lends a creepy underpinning to the characters. Episode 3 of Nobody's Quest opens up with that subject and then plunges back into the story.

I'm digging how NinthBatter is stepping into character development. Exposition and exploration can be important parts of a character's life. But rather than get trapped in the sticky mess of exposition, Ninth immediately launches into a plot twist and story progression. All in all, I like where this series is going and I keep looking forward to each installment.
Interested in the wide world of machinima? We have new movies every weekday here on WoW Moviewatch! Have suggestions for machinima we ought to feature? Toss us an email at moviewatch@wowinsider.com.


WoW Moviewatch: Nobody's Quest, Episode 3 originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 13 Jun 2013 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Blizzard details updates to Hearthstone - Thu, 13 Jun 2013 17:00:00 EST

Today, Blizzard has some pretty big announcements about their upcoming game Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft. The post is full of changes and additions that are being made to the game, many of which are based on the fan feedback so far. The biggest thing that jumps out at me right away is the fact that the game will now use gold as currency to buy new card packs. You earn gold through--get this--completing daily quests. Ha! And you thought you'd escaped those!

Other announcements include the ability to level the different class cards and the addition of a friends feature that allows you to add people to your friends list in order to battle or chat with them. There are also new card frames color-coded by class, as well as a number of updates to existing card functions and abilities. Make sure to jump on over to the Hearthstone page for the complete list! Oh, and before you ask -- no, there's still no news on when the beta will open up.

Blizzard details updates to Hearthstone originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 13 Jun 2013 17:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Flexible Raiding lockouts and queues clarified - Thu, 13 Jun 2013 16:00:00 EST

As with any new feature, confusion abounds around Flexible Raiding and just how it will work. Blizzard Community Manager Taepsilum took to the forums to clarify various aspects, including lockouts.
Taepsilum
Right now, the idea is to have FR lockouts work very similarly to lockouts in LFR.
You will be able to repeat bosses, and that will actually still be somewhat rewarding, you'll be able to use additional bonus rolls, earn Valor Points, and potentially loot some shinnies from trash...

There's something unique about FRs though, I'll explain it with an example:
Let's say you join a 12man and kill the first boss, leave the raid, and join a 20man, you might have to repeat the first boss.

"Might", so how does that work?
If everyone in the new 20man raid has already killed the first boss just like you did, then that boss will not spawn.
But even if only 1 of the players in that 20man has not killed the first boss, he will spawn again and everyone else will have to repeat the encounter.
This is all pretty confusing stuff! WoW Insider reached out to Blizzard for some additional clarity on just how the raid lockouts will work, and they came back with some more information.

Continue reading Flexible Raiding lockouts and queues clarified

Flexible Raiding lockouts and queues clarified originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 13 Jun 2013 16:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The Queue: Man of Steel tonight and I'm freaking out - Thu, 13 Jun 2013 15:00:00 EST

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Matthew Rossi will be your host today.

Yesterday was the huge Patch 5.4 infodump. Today, I'm going to see Man of Steel. So I'm all sorts of freaking out right now. Let's talk about WoW before I spin out of control and just start talking about Kryptonian Thought Beasts and the Jeweled Mountains of Krypton and Kandor and oh my Rao tonight is Man of Steel I am freaking out here.

And yes, a Thought-Beast was a big dinosaur looking monster with a screen on its forehead that showed you what it was thinking. In this case, it was thinking I want to eat that guy.. I don't know what possible evolutionary benefit that is, but there you go. Since a lot of these questions are about patch 5.4, expect many spoilers.

Thieren asks:
Any info on the Stromgarde Keep scenario that people are now talking about?
Please say it's true!


Anne covered the little we know about the Scenario in this post yesterday. All we know is that it exists, basically. Is it going to be the Alliance reclaiming it, the Horde taking it over, something else? We have no idea yet.

Continue reading The Queue: Man of Steel tonight and I'm freaking out

The Queue: Man of Steel tonight and I'm freaking out originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 13 Jun 2013 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: A first look at patch 5.4's environmental changes and raid - Thu, 13 Jun 2013 14:00:00 EST

WoW Insider was able to get into the patch 5.4 late last night, through a slew of disconnects and other server issues, and we managed to capture some footage for you of the environmental changes to one of the areas.

Now, this is spoiler-heavy, so if you don't want spoilers for patch 5.4 content, of any kind because while the video doesn't contain that much it could spoil something I never even thought of, please don't click the video. Also, don't click the break and read more of the post, and don't read the comments! Spoilers lurk within.

Continue reading Video: A first look at patch 5.4's environmental changes and raid

Video: A first look at patch 5.4's environmental changes and raid originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 13 Jun 2013 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Community Blog Topic Results: Merging servers and Virtual Realms - Thu, 13 Jun 2013 13:00:00 EST

Last week's Community Blog Topic was whether or not servers should be merged to alleviate the problem with low population servers. With the announcement that Virtual Realms will be tested on the patch 5.4 PTR, this subject became very timely, if not a little belated. Blizzard's answer to whether or not servers should be merged seems to be yes ... kinda. Rather than merging servers into several bigger servers, Virtual Realms will cluster several separate realms together into one big meta server with a shared AH and the ability to join guilds and groups cross realm. I assume that like servers will be put together, just like CRZ, so that PVE and PVP players won't be mixed.

If Virtual Realms make it to the live realms and work, it seems like an excellent solution to the problem of dead and imbalanced servers. But how will it be implemented? And what if Virtual Realms don't work? Should servers be merged?

Continue reading Community Blog Topic Results: Merging servers and Virtual Realms

Community Blog Topic Results: Merging servers and Virtual Realms originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 13 Jun 2013 13:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Should you play a paladin in WoW? - Thu, 13 Jun 2013 12:00:00 EST

If you're just getting started with World of Warcraft, the range of class options available to you can be a bit daunting. Which class is the best? Which class is the most fun? Which class will you enjoy? There's no answer that's right for everyone -- and you may wind up trying a few classes before you find the perfect fit. But where to begin? Today's class run-down will cover paladins, WoW's holy warriors.

As Blizzard puts it, paladins are called "to protect the weak, to bring justice to the unjust, and to vanquish evil from the darkest corners of the world." But your paladin may have its own motivations -- indeed, within the game you're certain to meet paladins with motives less pure. In fact, one of the interesting things about the paladin class is how different various paladins are: while alliance paladins very much fall along Blizzard's class description, the blood elf paladins, who style themselves Blood Knights, haven't always been particularly good guys.

But enough of that: what you want to know is how paladins play, so read on for more.

Continue reading Should you play a paladin in WoW?

Should you play a paladin in WoW? originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 13 Jun 2013 12:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Around Azeroth: I'll be doggone - Thu, 13 Jun 2013 10:00:00 EST

Listen, little dudes. You saved me when I was freezing to death in Kun-Lai, burying me in a pile of fuzzy bodies and adopting me into your pack, and I'll always be grateful for that. But it's time for us to part ways. Sure, we've had a good run of it, and you've certainly helped by out by paralyzing trolls with your adorableness. But I just don't earn enough gold to buy six pugs food and water and designer leashes and adorable little rhinestone collars for your itty-bitty pudgy necksies ... oh, damn it. You can stay. But I'm not making any more elite dragon pâté. (Thanks to submitter Casalilly of Dark Steel Knights on Fizzcrank [US-H] for the screenshot!)

Want to see your own screenshot here? Send it to aroundazeroth@wowinsider.com. We strongly prefer full-sized pictures with no UI or names showing. Include "Azeroth" in the subject line to ensure your submission dodges email spam filters; if you'd like to be credited, also include your name, guild and realm.

Around Azeroth: I'll be doggone originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 13 Jun 2013 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Fearsome paladin collective crusades for the Light - Thu, 13 Jun 2013 09:00:00 EST

Knights in shining armor or divisive zealots? The roleplay opportunities for a group of paladins in Azeroth are fierce, either way you look at it. The catch is how they are perceived and manage to interact with their fellow players. Are they protectors of the faith and guardians of fellow citizens, or a fearsome hammer of intolerance to be brought down upon anything that deviates?

Amelas Langston of Caelestis Templares, a guild of paladins on Silver Hand (US-RP), walks that line regularly with a guild of roleplayers who've become known for their devotion to eradicating any opposition to the Light. Has its hardline approach made pariahs of its players? Or has its stalwart stand against the forces of evil made heroes and saviors of its characters?

WoW Insider: Most readers will probably assume that a guild of paladins is portraying a knightly, noble mission, but in fact, your roleplay focus is quite different. A recent recruiting post on the realm forums noted that many of your members roleplay "gruff, jackass characters," and the words "zealotry" and "intolerance" have been used to described the group's approach to its roleplay. Does your mission cast guild members in danger of becoming pariahs among the Silver Hand RP community?

Amelas: It's a fair thing to assume. I've found that the majority of people that role play as paladins have that sort of a character. The Caelestis Templares, however, are dedicated to a goal, that goal being the eradication of all that stands in opposition to the Light. Intolerance and zeal are actually key virtues of our guild, so to describe us as zealots would be pretty accurate.

If our characters encounter something that the Order dictates is heretical, then they are obligated to take action against it. It becomes a bit of a drag when the actions of our characters make people think that the player behind them are as hard and unfriendly as they are.

Continue reading Fearsome paladin collective crusades for the Light

Fearsome paladin collective crusades for the Light originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 13 Jun 2013 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Breakfast Topic: Why can't I...? - Thu, 13 Jun 2013 08:00:00 EST

There are lots of things I wonder about the World of Warcraft. Like why can't I be a gnome druid? (Come on, with a kitten form and a bear cub form everyone would be playing one.) Why can't I be a gnome hunter? (Who could ride tamed pets.) Why can't I be a gnome paladin? (Gnomes can already be warriors and priests, so why not combine them?) How can gnomes and goblins jump so high? (This one I don't mind so much, because it's hilarious to see gnomes jumping their own height.) If you're seeing a theme here, well, okay, let's try some questions that are in no way related to gnomes: why can't I fly on Quel'Danas? (Answer: why are you on Quel'Danas?) Why are tamed devilsaurs so much smaller than actual devilsaurs? (Hunter trickery!)

Okay, I admit, there may be practical gameplay reasons for all of these things -- but, come on, Blizzard, can't you see the beauty of gnome druids? At any rate, dear readers, whether you're gnome obsessed or not, you surely have your own strange, unanswered WoW questions: so share them! Do you think your unanswered gameplay questions will ever become gameplay fact?

Breakfast Topic: Why can't I...? originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 13 Jun 2013 08:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 5.4 PTR news roundup - Wed, 12 Jun 2013 23:00:00 EST

Patch 5.4 has hit the PTR and a flurry of information regarding the latest patch has already been released. Featuring a new raid, patch 5.4 will also include a variety of new features that are quickly shaping up to be game-changers. Curious about all the new stuff? Take a look at our coverage for more information on patch 5.4 and the upcoming content.
Stay tuned for more patch 5.4 information, and keep your eyes peeled for the PTR.


Patch 5.4 PTR news roundup originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 12 Jun 2013 23:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 5.4 PTR: Initial ilevel ideas for the new raid levels - Wed, 12 Jun 2013 20:00:00 EST

Blizzard Lead Systems Designer Greg "Ghostcrawler" Street has tweeted the developers' preliminary item levels for the next tier's raid gear. Patch 5.4 is bringing in flexible raiding, a fourth difficulty level, which sits between Raid Finder and Normal raids in terms of both item level and difficulty.

Do note, first and foremost, that these numbers are not finalized. They should be taken with a very large pinch of salt, and are subject to considerable change. The PTR isn't even live at the time of writing this post, so let's not get ahead of ourselves and proclaim the end of days for raiding.

So let's look at the current item levels. Raid finder drops 502, normal mode 522, normal thunderforged 528, heroic mode, 535, heroic thunderforged 541. So, the gap between normal mode and LFR has been widened, from 20 to 25, with Flex sitting 17 levels lower than normal mode. The gaps above that are the same, but there's been no mention of something like Thunderforged gear.

For heroic geared raiders, Flex seems like a logical difficulty at these levels, but there will be some theorycrafting that needs to be done to ascertain whether the new tier's potentially lower-level drops will outdo their current gear thanks to set bonuses, trinkets and the like. What this ilvl distribution seems to be saying is that heroic-geared raiders shouldn't need to run LFR at all. But, this is all subject to change.

Patch 5.4 PTR: Initial ilevel ideas for the new raid levels originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 12 Jun 2013 20:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Know Your Lore: A discussion of Med'an - Wed, 12 Jun 2013 19:00:00 EST

The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how -- but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.

Med'an is a controversial character.

Well, maybe not. If Med'an were controversial, that would mean that some people like him and some people hate him, but so far, if Med'an has fans they're being awfully quiet about it. Now, that doesn't mean they don't exist, but until I see evidence for them existing I'm going to assume that they don't. So Med'an isn't controversial because there's no controversy. People either hate him, or they don't care about him at all. But there's the rub. By nature, I tend to dislike just going along with the common opinion without examining it for myself. So now, I find myself forced to ask: is Med'an that bad?

Med'an is as far as I know the only character to get dismissed from existence by the Ask CDev responses. There's a vague response at the end of Ask CDev 3 that implies that he left Azeroth entirely, and that's the last word we've gotten on the character. And I kind of understand why - taking a look at Med'an's backstory, it kind of sounds like something you'd see in someone's FlagRP profile that got out of hand.

Continue reading Know Your Lore: A discussion of Med'an

Know Your Lore: A discussion of Med'an originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 12 Jun 2013 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WoW Moviewatch: What My WoW Characters Are Thinking - Wed, 12 Jun 2013 18:00:00 EST

Wowcrendor is the machinimator that made you realize the game is still fun, even if you find some things frustrating. Wowcrendor is the machinimator who virtually invented a genre; we call it Wowcrendorism. What My WoW Characters Are Thinking is the video Wowcrendor most recently released about WoW.

Whether he's poking fun at warlocks or pointing out our own game-addled amusements, you can always rely on Wowcrendor's mostly harmless humor to highlight those unique cultural moments. Like that character that was going to be your main... or the one you were going to play with your friends but then you wandered off. It's like he can read my mind. I've had every one of these.
Interested in the wide world of machinima? We have new movies every weekday here on WoW Moviewatch! Have suggestions for machinima we ought to feature? Toss us an email at moviewatch@wowinsider.com.


WoW Moviewatch: What My WoW Characters Are Thinking originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 12 Jun 2013 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 5.4 PTR: Challenge Mode titles for fastest clear times - Wed, 12 Jun 2013 17:00:00 EST

In patch 5.4, Challenge Mode players who have already earned gold will have a strong reason to continue running them. Players who earn the fastest clear times in a Challenge Mode dungeon will receive a title specific to each dungeon. As long as players hold the record for the top time, the title will remain. A permanent Feat of Strength will also be earned upon reaching the fastest time.

However, there is a caveat: the Challenge Mode group must have at least 3 players from the same realm to earn the titles.
Patch 5.4 Challenge Mode notes
Players who obtain a realm-best time in a Challenge Mode dungeon (group must contain at least 3 people from the same realm to qualify) will receive a temporary title specific to each dungeon (e.g. Siegebreaker for Siege of Niuzao temple, Darkmaster for Scholomance, etc.). This title will persist for as long as a player retains the top time on the realm. Holding a realm-best time at any point will also confer a permanent Feat of Strength to record the accomplishment.


It's not enough to go for the gold anymore. How far will you go for the titles and Feats of Strength?

Patch 5.4 PTR: Challenge Mode titles for fastest clear times originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 12 Jun 2013 17:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Encrypted Text: Combat and the GCD - Wed, 12 Jun 2013 16:00:00 EST

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Encrypted Text for assassination, combat and subtlety rogues. Chase Christian will be your guide to the world of shadows every Wednesday. Feel free to email me with any questions or article suggestions you'd like to see covered here.

The three rogue specs share many common mechanics. They all follow the same formula: generate combo points, use finishers, activate your cooldowns when they come up. The real differences between the specs only show up once you start playing them. Assassination is well-known for being more relaxed and favors pooling energy over spamming attacks. Subtlety rogues have a knack for massive burst damage via their complex cooldown, Shadow Dance.

Combat is arguably the simplest of the three specs, and is often characterized by its fast-paced gameplay and high actions-per-minute rate. Adrenaline Rush, which has been combat's signature cooldown for years, is designed to let you push buttons even faster. Assassination's Vendetta lets you hit harder, subtlety's Shadow Dance lets you use openers, and Adrenaline Rush doubles the numbers of buttons you can push. Unfortunately for combat, the concept of "push more buttons" can't scale forever.

Continue reading Encrypted Text: Combat and the GCD

Encrypted Text: Combat and the GCD originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 12 Jun 2013 16:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 5.4 PTR: New scenario, Stromgarde Keep - Wed, 12 Jun 2013 15:00:00 EST

Tucked in among all the other patch 5.4 files dug up by Wowhead is a new scenario with little to no information in terms of maps, bosses, or achievements. You might overlook this scenario in favor of other information, but Alliance players in particular may want to look again, because it looks as though we'll be paying a visit to Stromgarde Keep. Players may or may not remember the deserted ruins over in the Arathi Highlands, once home to the Trollbane line -- unfortunately, the zone didn't get much of a revamp during Cataclysm.

But the potential for this new scenario is huge, depending on what exactly we'll be doing while we're in there. There doesn't appear to be a faction requirement for the scenario, so it seems both Alliance and Horde players will be entering the zone -- whether or not we'll be able to keep our appearance, or be under another disguise effect, is currently a mystery. However, Stromgarde holds tremendous potential, because it represents a foothold steeped in a staggering amount of history for the Alliance, and the human race.

Continue reading Patch 5.4 PTR: New scenario, Stromgarde Keep

Patch 5.4 PTR: New scenario, Stromgarde Keep originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 12 Jun 2013 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Around Azeroth: Axe me no questions - Wed, 12 Jun 2013 14:00:00 EST

Karazhan is a pretty dull place nowadays. They used to welcome thousands of guests a week, and now they're lucky to see a few dozen warriors. So the bosses have decided to mix up their battle tactics when a group does come around. "To this day I still have no idea what made Shade of Aran want to wield an axe instead of his trusty cane," writes submitter Colter. "Perhaps Karazhan just required more lumber."

Want to see your own screenshot here? Send it to aroundazeroth@wowinsider.com. We strongly prefer full-sized pictures with no UI or names showing. Include "Azeroth" in the subject line to ensure your submission dodges email spam filters; if you'd like to be credited, also include your name, guild and realm.

Around Azeroth: Axe me no questions originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 12 Jun 2013 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 5.4 PTR: New pets, pet battle tournament, and more - Wed, 12 Jun 2013 13:00:00 EST

In addition to Moon Moon, the dire wolf pet dropped by the new Darkmoon Faire boss mentioned earlier today, patch 5.4 already seems full of new content for pet battle aficionados.

First is a datamined scenario currently titled The Celestial Tournament. As of now, the achievement for this tournament is listed under the Pet Battles subcategory, so it's very likely the pet battle tournament mentioned in the patch 5.4 patch notes. A new battle pet named Essence of Xuen provides some hint as to the rewards possible.

Continue reading Patch 5.4 PTR: New pets, pet battle tournament, and more

Patch 5.4 PTR: New pets, pet battle tournament, and more originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 12 Jun 2013 13:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 5.4 PTR: Dungeon Journal for Siege of Orgrimmar - Wed, 12 Jun 2013 12:00:00 EST

I don't think this even needs to be said, but huge huge spoilers ahoy.

With patch 5.4 going on the PTR with the quickness, we're starting to see just who, exactly, we're going to be fighting in the Siege of Orgrimmar raid, and it's definitely not as straightforward as we might have thought. With the folks at Wowhead having the zone page and Dungeon Journal information up, we can take a look at what's to come. Be warned, there are spoilers for the upcoming raid in plenty past this link. If you don't want to know what the bosses will be in this raid, then do not read past this point.

Okay, now that they're gone, let's gorge on what we can discover.

Continue reading Patch 5.4 PTR: Dungeon Journal for Siege of Orgrimmar

Patch 5.4 PTR: Dungeon Journal for Siege of Orgrimmar originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 12 Jun 2013 12:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The Queue: Patches always drop when you're sleepy - Wed, 12 Jun 2013 11:00:00 EST

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Matthew Rossi will be your host today.

So yeah, I was hoping to go to bed when patch 5.4 news dropped and I ended up being awake for hours working on posts about it. I may be ludicrously groggy right now. Anyway, best news of patch 5.4 is Titan's Grip for polearms wooo! There's other stuff ... proving grounds, flex raiding, virtual realms, something in Orgrimmar ... but all of that pales compared to the majesty of TG with polearms. Many warriors will now twirl our way to greatness.

Since none of you knew that 5.4 would drop on the PTR when you were commenting in yesterday's Queue, most of your questions won't be about it. That's okay, it happens. As a result, we're lucky that folks on Twitter never sleep.

@AlternativeChat asks on Twitter:
Chances of mail across Virtual Servers? So you can finally send Heirlooms?

It looks pretty good, considering you can join a guild across them, use a shared AH across them, and do dungeons and raids (and no word of limits on that) across them. I would be very surprised if you couldn't mail across them. We'll see, though. The patch notes don't say yet.

Continue reading The Queue: Patches always drop when you're sleepy

The Queue: Patches always drop when you're sleepy originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 12 Jun 2013 11:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 5.4 PTR: Item enhancement changes for low-level players - Wed, 12 Jun 2013 10:00:00 EST

In patch 5.4, it's going to be a little easier to deck your character out in some pretty fantastic gear. According to the patch notes, all item enhancements from Enchanting, Engineering, Leatherworking, Tailoring, and various vendors and quests will be able to be applied to any piece of gear, regardless of item level. What does that mean for an aspiring alt? It means that all that wonderful heirloom gear you've managed to acquire over the years can finally be enchanted.

There are limits to these enchantments, however, so don't bust out the Mongoose for your max-level character just yet. Although high-level enchantments applied to items equipped by low-level players will have their power scaled down to be more appropriate for that level range, low level enhancements will not scale up beyond their intended level range. In other words, it appears as though the enhancements aren't exactly scalable.

From what can be gathered so far from the patch notes, it appears as though you'll be able to simply enchant your gear as you go. If you use a high-level enchant, it'll be scaled down to you. Players looking for a way to improve their heirloom quality gear now have a method of doing so. Although the patch notes aren't 100% clear on this mechanic, we'll know more once patch 5.4 hits the PTR servers.

Patch 5.4 PTR: Item enhancement changes for low-level players originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 12 Jun 2013 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 5.4 PTR: Moonfang, new dire wolf boss, to prowl the Darkmoon Faire - Wed, 12 Jun 2013 09:00:00 EST

Among the data mined from patch 5.3 is a potential new addition to the Darkmoon Faire: a new boss. In the current PTR build, the boss's name seems to be Moonfang. In the full version of the picture above (which can be found on MMO-Champion), you can see a crescent moon that floats above Moonfang's head.

Chances are good this new dire wolf will work similarly to the Darkmoon Rabbit added back in patch 5.0.4, which is a ferocious world boss despite its unassuming appearance. Like the Darkmoon Rabbit, this new dire wolf boss appears to drop a battle pet: Moon Moon.

In addition to the battle pet, Moonfang will also drop Moonfang's Paw. Moonfang's Paw is a statless vanity fist weapon to be used in transmogrification.

Patch 5.4 PTR: Moonfang, new dire wolf boss, to prowl the Darkmoon Faire originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 12 Jun 2013 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Breakfast Topic: Are you prepared for Virtual Realms? - Wed, 12 Jun 2013 08:00:00 EST

We mentioned them last night while covering the surprises of patch 5.4, so now I roll around to you this morning. Did you see virtual realms coming? Do you like or hate them? Are they a cool way to avoid forcing players to worry about name changes and server moves or are they just a half step that needs to go further?

Personally I'm really interested because with this, the day comes ever closer that I could pug any raid with any friend I have of the same faction. It's a change I never expected to see, and one I'm very interested in watching. If this eventually leads to, say, one North American virtual realm for all players, I might be okay with that.

But enough about me. This is about you. What do you think? Let us know, we're keen to hear it. Patch 5.4 definitely isn't afraid to shake up the status quo so far.

Breakfast Topic: Are you prepared for Virtual Realms? originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 12 Jun 2013 08:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 5.4 PTR: Proving Grounds - Wed, 12 Jun 2013 06:00:00 EST

Patch 5.4 already? When they said patches would be coming more frequently they were not kidding - we've only been in patch 5.3 for a month or so and patch 5.4 is already on the PTR. And it is packed with new features, some of which we've been waiting for all expansion, like the long discussed proving grounds.
Rygarius - Patch 5.4 Coming Soon!
New Feature: Proving Grounds
  • Proving Grounds is a new feature for individual players to test and improve their combat skills.
  • At the Proving Grounds, players may undertake trials, designed for Damage, Tank, or Healer roles.
  • It provides a great opportunity to learn how to Tank or Heal, without the need of a group.
  • Each trial is available in four separate difficulties: Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Endless. Harder difficulties include more difficult and varied enemies.
  • Endless mode allows you to test your mettle against increasingly difficult enemies. Compare your best scores to friends and guildmates!
  • [PTR]: Access to the Proving Grounds and more information is coming soon.


While we still don't know quite a lot (like what form these will take, whether they'll be in their own location like Brawler's Guild or queued for like scenarios) we do know they're currently planned for 5.4, they'll allow for DPS, tanks or healers to face solo challenges to improve in their chosen role and they'll have multiple difficulty levels. This has been a feature long anticipated and requested, so I for one can't wait to see how it is implemented.

Patch 5.4 PTR: Proving Grounds originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 12 Jun 2013 06:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 5.4 PTR: Datamined NPC, mount, and pet models - Wed, 12 Jun 2013 04:00:00 EST

Along with the recently released patch 5.4 patch notes, our friends at MMO-Champion have data-mined some new models including armor for tier 16 and season 14 gear. Garrosh Hellscream gets a new look and we get a sneak peek at the latest sha! Everything behind the cut contains spoilers for the upcoming patch 5.4. Click through and view at your own risk!

Please note: This post contains spoilers for patch 5.4.

Continue reading Patch 5.4 PTR: Datamined NPC, mount, and pet models

Patch 5.4 PTR: Datamined NPC, mount, and pet models originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 12 Jun 2013 04:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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