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Below is a list of Article headlines from WOW Insider. This are used on our main page and updated daily. Each article contains links back to WOWinsider, which allow you to view the whole article

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World of Warcraft Game Fuel commercial hits the airwaves - Mon, 15 Jun 2009 19:00:00 EST


People have only been able to get their hands on the WoW themed Mountain Dew Game Fuel within the last couple of weeks (and is only officially supposed to be in stores today), despite the months of hype being thrown behind the product. Throwing more gasoline on the hype-fire comes the new Game Fuel commercial, which you can watch above. Watch it a few times, actually. You may need it to fully comprehend what you've just watched.

It's terrible. Nobody who actually plays WoW will find this commercial anything but corny. It's definitely not aimed at us. Or if it is, the people who made it probably... you know, shouldn't have been the ones to make it. And does it frighten anybody else that even though they used two females as the soda-swilling gamers, one of them turned into a dude? I mean, play whatever avatars you want in-game, but there's something disturbing about a pretty young lady hulking out and turning into a bulging green monstrosity. And I'm not talking She-Hulk. I'm talking a throbbing mass of masculine muscle. Augh. I'm not sure I want to let my girlfriend drink this stuff anymore.

World of Warcraft Game Fuel commercial hits the airwaves originally appeared on WoW.com on Mon, 15 Jun 2009 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The Daily Quest: Keep watching the skies - Mon, 15 Jun 2009 18:00:00 EST


We here at WoW.com are on a Daily Quest to bring you interesting, informative and entertaining WoW-related links from around the blogosphere.

The Daily Quest: Keep watching the skies originally appeared on WoW.com on Mon, 15 Jun 2009 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Ghostcrawler: Totem position will always matter - Mon, 15 Jun 2009 17:00:00 EST
We've talked about the limits and benefits of totems before, but Shamans have pretty much agreed that, especially since totems are starting to see some shared usage with other classes' spells, they could really use a revamp in terms of base mechanics. The main issue is simply mobility -- totems are designed to be dropped and immobile, and that on its own starts them at a disadvantage when compared to buffs that are placed directly on players. There have been lots of ideas passed around about how to get out from under that limit -- a "relay" totem that could spread buffs around, a mobile totem attached to the Shaman him/herself, or just a kind of totem pet that could be directed by the Shaman as needed.

But Ghostcrawler just plain says no. In response to many issues with the totem mechanic, he chooses to focus on mobility, saying the fact that Shaman totems have limited range and must be placed in certain places is intrinsic to the way the class functions. He admits that totem mechanics are being examined (the main issue the OP has is totem health, and indeed, it may be tough for Shamans to keep both their totems and their mana up), but says that mobility is not a change they're planning for: totems are designed to be strategically placed once, and that's the way they'll stay.

Bad news? Not really -- when I played as a Shaman, and for most of the Shamans I know, the totem mechanic is something to be proud of. Sure it's a pain, but a physical manifestation of the spells and buffs we cast is unique to the class. The only issue will be whether Blizzard makes up for that disadvantage in some other way -- so far, it seems most totem-droppers would say they haven't.

Ghostcrawler: Totem position will always matter originally appeared on WoW.com on Mon, 15 Jun 2009 17:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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15 Minutes of Fame: The furry fandom - Mon, 15 Jun 2009 16:00:00 EST
15 Minutes of Fame is our look at World of Warcraft players of all shapes and sizes - from the renowned to the relatively anonymous, the remarkable to the player next door. Tip us off to players you'd like to hear more about.

If you think "the furry fandom" sounds like a bunch of players who like playing Tauren, you'd be right -- to a tip-of-the-iceberg degree. This week's 15 Minutes of Fame looks at a often maligned, frequently mocked yet little understood hobby and lifestyle: the furry fandom, or furries. Furries (or "furs") are fans of fictional, anthropomorphic animal characters with human personalities and characteristics. Together, these furries form the furry fandom, a community of artists, writers, roleplayers and general fans of the furry art forms who gather on the internet and at conventions. Yes, these are cosplayers in fur suits - but there's a lot more to it, as this week's profile will show.

Now, before we proceed: Yes, there's a segment of the furry community that's into erotic art. While the media have had the proverbial field day with this furry fodder, the sex-focused furs are by no means an especially representative segment of furry fandom. Even if they were, this profile is not headed there. Instead, let's head back to the WoW.com context of the furry fandom: a World of Warcraft player (and frequent WoW.com commenter) who expresses himself emotionally and spiritually through his furry persona.

EDIT: As always, hateful, insulting and trollish posts will get deleted. You don't have to agree, but you can disagree without resorting to personal attacks. Multiple offenders will be banned, k thx ~ The Management

Continue reading 15 Minutes of Fame: The furry fandom

15 Minutes of Fame: The furry fandom originally appeared on WoW.com on Mon, 15 Jun 2009 16:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WoW Insider Show Episode 94: More zones than we can remember - Mon, 15 Jun 2009 15:30:00 EST
Our podcast was live on the virtual airwaves last Saturday as usual, and it was a pretty wacky affair -- Turpster, our newest blogger Eddie "Brigwyn" Carrington, and I dissected those mount changes that dropped last week, the Mountain Dew Battle-bots and how you can get your hands on one, and how scammers can get past your Authenticator (and how to stop them from doing so). We answered your emails as well, including tips about how to make sure one of your characters finally gets to 80 and all kinds of movie posters from Turpster's little "Ocean's 87" script idea a little while ago. You can check out all of the fan-submitted posters in the gallery below.

Download the show via any of the links below, and do make sure, if you haven't yet, to stop over in iTunes and give us a nice review telling us what you think of the show. It's been a while since we had any reviews go up over there, so mixing in some new voices will probably do us some good. Thanks for listening as always -- we'll see you next week!



Get the podcast:
[iTunes] Subscribe to the WoW Insider Show directly in iTunes.
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[MP3] Download the MP3 directly.

Listen here on the page:

WoW Insider Show Episode 94: More zones than we can remember originally appeared on WoW.com on Mon, 15 Jun 2009 15:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Reader UI of the Week: Metzerott - Mon, 15 Jun 2009 15:00:00 EST


Reader UI of the Week is back! Each week WoW.com will bring you a fresh look at reader submitted UIs. Have a screenshot of your UI you want to submit? Send your screenshots, along with info on what mods you're using, to readerui@gmail.com.

This interface, by Metzerott, is one of the more unusual I've seen. With 90% of the submissions I get featuring rectangular unit frames towards the bottom, a large bottom panel studded with action buttons, and a customized mini-map moved to the middle of the bottom, it's nice to see something a little different. Well, it still hits the last point, but two out of three ain't bad.

More importantly to me, it's very minimal. It covers less of the screen than any interface I've seen recently, including the default UI. I'm going to guess that the left unit frame is the player, the right is the target, and the small user frame to the upper-left of the target frame is target-of-target.

Continue reading Reader UI of the Week: Metzerott

Reader UI of the Week: Metzerott originally appeared on WoW.com on Mon, 15 Jun 2009 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Need flying mounts? Mei Francis has you covered - Mon, 15 Jun 2009 14:00:00 EST

Patch 3.1.2 brought it with the usual slew of undocumented changes, but here's one that appears to have flown under the radar for a while -- Mei Francis, Dalaran's exotic mount vendor, now sells basic Outland flying mounts (read: gryphons and wyverns) at both regular and epic speeds. This is great news for, well, anybody who doesn't want to go to Outland! I know that when my shaman hit 77 and I bought all of my flying skills, it was a pain to have to go to Shadowmoon Valley to buy my mount, so I can certainly appreciate the change.

Of course, there are even more mount changes in store -- a 150% speed flyer at 60, for example -- so this is obviously part of the devs' mission to streamline the leveling and traveling process for players of all levels. A welcome and unexpected change for quality of leveling life -- that's what I like to see.

Need flying mounts? Mei Francis has you covered originally appeared on WoW.com on Mon, 15 Jun 2009 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Officers' Quarters: Normal raiders are people, too - Mon, 15 Jun 2009 13:00:00 EST

Every Monday Scott Andrews contributes
Officers' Quarters, a column about the ins and outs of guild leadership.

"Normal" mode sounds so dull, doesn't it? Who would want to be "Normal" when you can be "Heroic" -- particularly when being Heroic garners better loot and, for healers specifically, a chance at the ultimate healing mace, Val'anyr. Most guilds on my server prefer the larger raids, and who can blame them? Normal mode is often seen as a fun distraction. Something for raiders to pass the time with, or gear up their alts in, when their guild isn't tackling the "real" version of the instance.

Sometimes Normal mode is easier. There's no question that fights like Vezax are much less complicated when you're only dealing with 10 players. It's certainly nice not having to worry about switching tanks on Kologarn or interrupting Auriaya's Sentinel Blast. But sometimes Normal is not easier. The margin of error is a lot thinner when one death means you've lost half your tanks, a half or a third of your healers, or 15-20% of your DPS. And it could be that your raid doesn't have a single battle rez, let alone three or four. Maybe that's why players prefer Heroic raids: Unless you're going after the more difficult hard-mode encounters, it's not the end of the world when you screw up and die.

This week, one guild leader asks, when most serious raiders only want to run Heroic raids, how can someone recruit for a Normal raiding guild?

Hi Scott,

I'm the GM of a reasonably-successful 10-man raiding guild (we're ranked in the top 90 US guilds according to GuildOx's "Strict 10-man" filter). Like many other guilds, we're seeing a decline in attendance lately (as per your most recent column, "Surviving summer"), and it's become obvious that we need to recruit 4-5 more people of various classes/specs so we can reliably run our scheduled raids without depending on 100% perfect attendance from anyone.

Continue reading Officers' Quarters: Normal raiders are people, too

Officers' Quarters: Normal raiders are people, too originally appeared on WoW.com on Mon, 15 Jun 2009 13:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WoW Moviewatch: Happy Up Here - Mon, 15 Jun 2009 12:00:00 EST


Happy Up Here
is the new machinima by that maestro of Gnomes, Baron Soosdon. He spelled out the premise of the video best when he said, "So, I was flying around in Elwynn and found this lonely little house in mountains. It had no residents so that had to be changed!"

Happy Up Here shows the same inspired music choice as the Baron's previous works. According Soosdon himself, he's not done "area creation" before this video; he just wanted to make a video that would help folks smile. Considering the laughs and smiles the gnomes seem to be having, I think he succeeded. The little gnome resort he's created looks like it would be a rolicking good time, complete with dance space, rockets, swimming pool, bars, and more.

This is definitely a fun video to watch, though I could see some folks might be confused if they're looking for something like Little Nikita's action. This video just doesn't work that way. It's a short vignette of fun, and just meant to be enjoyed in its bite-sized lightheartedness.

If you have trouble with the YouTube stream, you can also see Happy Up Here on Vimeo or WeGame.

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 e-mail at machinima AT wow DOT com.


WoW Moviewatch: Happy Up Here originally appeared on WoW.com on Mon, 15 Jun 2009 12:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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World of WarCrafts: Jewelry and bleach shirts, take two - Mon, 15 Jun 2009 11:00:00 EST


World of WarCrafts returns to WoW Insider with a broadened focus to spotlight art and creativity by WoW players and fans, including fan art, cooking, comics, cosplay, music, fan fiction - and yes, (War)crafts. Share your creativity: tip us off via the tips line (attention: World of WarCrafts).

Fans of Sugarrat's WoW Bleach Shirt didn't waste a moment after last week's feature to get working on their own creations. We begin this week's World of WarCrafts with another version of the bleach shirt from reader Andy (Zorren of Auchindoun-EU). "I made basically negative versions compared to hers, as the bleach isn't the outline - it's the fill," he wrote. "I based them on spray-paint stencils but had fun bleaching the designs ... and my pants ... and the tablecloth ..."

... and apparently, a hip flask for his friend Criterous of Auchindoun-EU, too. "Similar method to Sugarrat's, except I cut the design from sticker paper and spray painted over it," he noted. It appears to have played a major part in a happy birthday celebration, from the look of things -- check out the photo of a happy Criterous at the very end of this article.

Another bleach shirt, plus a handmade racial necklace (and Criterous' happy day), after the break.

Continue reading World of WarCrafts: Jewelry and bleach shirts, take two

World of WarCrafts: Jewelry and bleach shirts, take two originally appeared on WoW.com on Mon, 15 Jun 2009 11:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Around Azeroth: The eye of the universe - Mon, 15 Jun 2009 10:00:00 EST


The aptly named Lightbright of <Night Renegades> on Baelgun sent in this screenshot a while back, accompanied only by the warning "Do not eat all the herbs you gather in Northrend!" Sage advice, although Lightbright appears to be having a pretty good time, just chilling out in the middle of the galaxy or wherever he's at. I think this is what happens when you look directly at a solar eclipse. Those white spots aren't stars; they're holes burned into your eyes by radiation. (Note to science nerds: yes, I know this is not what happens during an eclipse. Work with me here.)

Do you have any unusual, beautiful or interesting World of Warcraft images that are just collecting dust in your screenshots folder? We'd love to see them on Around Azeroth! Sharing your screenshot is as simple as e-mailing aroundazeroth@gmail.com 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. Please include the word "Azeroth" in your post so it does not get swept into the spam bin. We strongly prefer full screen shots without the UI showing -- use alt-Z to remove it. Please, no more battleground scoreboards, gold seller ads, or pictures of the Ninja Turtles in Dalaran.

Around Azeroth: The eye of the universe originally appeared on WoW.com on Mon, 15 Jun 2009 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Ready Check: Flame Leviathan - Mon, 15 Jun 2009 09:00:00 EST



Ready Check is a twice-a-week column focusing on successful raiding for the serious raider. Hardcore or casual, Vault of Archavon or Ulduar, everyone can get in on the action and down some bosses. Today, we step back a little and look at endgame in the context of sports.

Ulduar. Land of legend. Realm of confused Titans. Raid of epics. Ulduar is home to some of the finest fights available in Azeroth, not to mention leagues of incredible lore. Over the next few weeks, your intrepid Ready Check columnists will be taking a look at what you should expect from Ulduar, in both 10 man and 25 man versions.

We're going to go in a simple format. We'll look at the trash before a boss, the boss, then the next trash. So, let's get started with that beautiful runway before Flame Leviathan.

There's a little extra to cover with Leviathan, because of the fight's unique vehicle dynamic. Today's Ready Check will be focused exclusively on this fight. It's not because the fight is so difficult, but because your method for fighting it has absolutely nothing to do with the class you play. You get to learn entirely new stuff for this fight.

The three parts of our Flame Leviathan guide are:
Or you can jump behind the cut to get started.

Continue reading Ready Check: Flame Leviathan

Ready Check: Flame Leviathan originally appeared on WoW.com on Mon, 15 Jun 2009 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Breakfast Topic: Do you buy just because of the WoW brand? - Mon, 15 Jun 2009 08:00:00 EST
So Mountain Dew is pushing Game Fuel, the site has been live for a couple of weeks and now Battle Bots have gone live for all you lucky people in the US who asked for one. Now I love the WoW brand as much as anyone but that doesn't mean I want to quaff strange liquids in the hope of winning prizes.

It makes me wonder, does seeing that shiny WoW logo on a bottle, a mouse mat or some other item of merchandise make you more likely to buy it? Do you think that the WoW logo brings with it some kind of quality mark that sets such an item out as being worthy of your purchase? Drop your thoughts into the comments box below.

Breakfast Topic: Do you buy just because of the WoW brand? originally appeared on WoW.com on Mon, 15 Jun 2009 08:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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World of Warcraft comic issue #20 preview - Sun, 14 Jun 2009 22:00:00 EST

The World of Warcraft comic train keeps a-rollin' with the upcoming twentieth issue, with this one focusing on everyone's favorite pre-Wrath Scourge invasion. Here's what the official PR solicitation has to say:

The Scourge makes their move and attacks from all fronts intent on taking no prisoners! No longer united, can Varian and Thrall survive the onslaught? And will Valeera once again succumb to her addiction to magical energy?

Oh no, dear readers! Can they? Will she?

I guess you'll just have to pick up the comic. If you need a quick fix, though, you can check out BlizzPlanet's scans of the preview that they've so graciously provided. At a glance, the art seems to be a bit improved over the Onyxia arc (thankfully) and, possibly more importantly, we're finally getting into recent and familiar territory. Heck, the comic's only a few months behind us now! Maybe soon you'll read about yourself killing Yogg-Saron before you even do it.

World of Warcraft comic issue #20 preview originally appeared on WoW.com on Sun, 14 Jun 2009 22:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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[1.Local]: The all a-Twitter edition - Sun, 14 Jun 2009 20:00:00 EST


Reader comments - ahh, yes, the juicy goodness following a meaty post. [1.Local] ducks past the swinging doors to see what readers have been chatting about in the back room over the past week.

Ahhh, Sunday -- what's known around our place as "the day of extras": extra sleep, extra housework (blarrrg), extra mileage on the jogging trail, extra errands in game (going fishing in hopes of catching up with Mr. Pinchy, anyone?). If you're pining for some WoW love this weekend yet find yourself stuck outside of the game, don't feel as if you're all on your lonesome. Join the WoW crowd on Twitter. Most of the WoW.com team is there, plus a wider community of WoW players from all over the world. It's addictive - come follow the latest scuttle and see for yourself.

More of the latest scuttle, of course, from other WoW.com readers, after the break.

Continue reading [1.Local]: The all a-Twitter edition

[1.Local]: The all a-Twitter edition originally appeared on WoW.com on Sun, 14 Jun 2009 20:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Ashbringer TPB is pretty legendary - Sun, 14 Jun 2009 18:00:00 EST


It was with a mix of anticipation and apprehension that I wrote about the Ashbringer Trade Paperback by Wildstorm which collects all four issues of the limited series. After all, I wasn't entirely impressed with the regular series featuring Varian Wrynn but thoroughly enjoyed Tokyopop's Warcraft Legends manga, so while I was decided upon getting Ashbringer, I had moderately low expectations.

The good thing about having low expectations is that it's hard to get disappointed. It turns out, however, that I didn't have to set my expectations so low... the Ashbringer comics are a very good read from start to finish, particularly for readers who play World of Warcraft. In fact, that might be its one caveat -- the Ashbringer limited series is a decent read for the average reader but truly shines for players, who are familiar with the story and recognize the characters.

Continue reading Ashbringer TPB is pretty legendary

Ashbringer TPB is pretty legendary originally appeared on WoW.com on Sun, 14 Jun 2009 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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All the World's a Stage: The core layer - Sun, 14 Jun 2009 16:00:00 EST


This week's edition of All the World's a Stage concludes a three-part series on the layers of social interaction in roleplaying. Next week we will continue looking at how to roleplay one's professions.

Good friends are stars in the sky of life, and especially as roleplayers, friends are absolutely essential to our hobby - our whole reason for playing WoW involves creative social interactions. Even if you never really know who a roleplaying partner is in real life, just roleplaying with him or her for a few minutes can create a memorable experience.

Previously, we discussed how to roleplay when you first meet someone, as well as what to do once you've gotten to know them a bit more. The key in each case is remembering that roleplaying is a social experience first, and a creative one second - your character must conform to the rules of good socialization before he or she can succeed creatively. Even though at first this seems more limiting, in the end it will be more liberating, because through sociable characters, you can collaboratively create stories and experiences in a way that no other form of storytelling can.

In fact, the closer you become to your group of friends, the more the possibilities bloom. The core concept characterizations you used to use to entertain strangers are still useful, but here they can take on a deeper meaning. You still listen to your friends and adapt your own character to theirs, but now they will listen to you, and adapt their characters to yours. The closer your friendships are, the more your exploration and creativity are truly mutual and cooperative, and the more you can try out new things that you've never done before.

Continue reading All the World's a Stage: The core layer

All the World's a Stage: The core layer originally appeared on WoW.com on Sun, 14 Jun 2009 16:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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How not to apply to a guild - Sun, 14 Jun 2009 14:00:00 EST
The Wordy Warrior covers a well-traveled subject in an interesting way in her latest post. We've already talked in-depth about how to get into a good raiding guild (and we've even covered some amazing guild applications), but straight from the trenches of guild leadership, Ariedan sends an open letter to anyone applying to her guild with, some might say, the wrong attitude.

Here's the thing: especially if you're applying to a progression guild, odds are that they don't need you. They're progressing just fine, and bringing you in just opens the door for more drama. It's a risk, and it's your job to convince them to take that risk, hopefully for the benefit of both. So if you show up to an application and don't take it seriously, and flip out when they question your background, and expect them to take you on without any proof you'd be valuable to them, don't be surprised when they laugh you right out of their forums.

We're probably preaching to the choir here -- if you're reading this site, you probably already have at least one clue, and are either in a guild you like that is not a raiding guild, or are in a progression guild that you got into because you were able to justify that risk. But if you're still having trouble figuring out how to get where you want to be, take WW's advice to heart: it's on you to justify your entry to the guild, it's not on them to put up with you.

How not to apply to a guild originally appeared on WoW.com on Sun, 14 Jun 2009 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WoW, Casually: Tips for leveling on a PvP realm - Sun, 14 Jun 2009 12:00:00 EST


Robin Torres writes WoW, Casually for the player with limited playtime. Of course, you people with lots of playtime can read this too, but you may get annoyed by the fact that we are unashamed, even proud, of the fact that beating WoW isn't our highest priority. Take solace in the fact that your gear is better than ours, but if that doesn't work, remember that we outnumber you. Not that that's a threat, after all, we don't have time to do anything about it. But if WoW were a democracy, we'd win.

I have played on a PvP server for years, so I can tell you with authority that I cannot recommend choosing a PvP realm if you have limited playtime. PvE servers have it so much easier as far as questing solo in contested territories. I can only imagine how much easier it would be to quest in zones like Hillsbrad Foothills and Stranglethorn Vale without the fear of being ganked every few minutes. And as you can see above, my time in Borean Tundra hasn't been exactly gank-free.

Continue reading WoW, Casually: Tips for leveling on a PvP realm

WoW, Casually: Tips for leveling on a PvP realm originally appeared on WoW.com on Sun, 14 Jun 2009 12:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Around Azeroth: The great race - Sun, 14 Jun 2009 10:00:00 EST


You know you've been waiting too long for new content when you start organizing events like this one. "It's been a long-standing tradition of my guild to run level 1 naked gnome/dwarf races, or as we call them, "nakkid" races," writes Baddad of <Survivors of the Storm> on Madoran. "The goal is to run from Dun Morogh into Ironforge, through the Deeprun Tram (players can take the tram and it's often VERY funny to watch someone just barely miss the tram and fall into the pit) and then through the gates of Stormwind." That's Baddad refereeing in the middle with his impartial Felguard advisor. He adds that in this particular race, first place went to Nenet, with Tiberiusll as runner-up and Sycosimp taking the bronze.

Do you have any unusual, beautiful or interesting World of Warcraft images that are just collecting dust in your screenshots folder? We'd love to see them on Around Azeroth! Sharing your screenshot is as simple as e-mailing aroundazeroth@gmail.com 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. Please include the word "Azeroth" in your post so it does not get swept into the spam bin. We strongly prefer full screen shots without the UI showing -- use alt-Z to remove it. Please, no more battleground scoreboards, gold seller ads, or pictures of the Ninja Turtles in Dalaran.

Around Azeroth: The great race originally appeared on WoW.com on Sun, 14 Jun 2009 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Sunday Morning Funnies: Do I sound fat? - Sun, 14 Jun 2009 09:00:00 EST
Today's comic list is full of surprises, including great artwork, plot development, hilarity, and one or two that didn't really tickle my fancy this week. Perhaps if I were a bigger fan of tacos....

Sunday Morning Funnies: Do I sound fat? originally appeared on WoW.com on Sun, 14 Jun 2009 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Breakfast Topic: What do you think of region-specific pets? - Sun, 14 Jun 2009 08:00:00 EST


European gamers are not happy bunnies. Blizzard implemented rolling restarts to remove whatever bug had allowed gamers to get themselves a Battle Bot pet. Yes, they stood before European WoW players and said: 'No you shall not have a Bot' leaving them feeling unloved and bereft. It does kind of make sense though given Mountain Dew is almost unheard of in Europe.

This is that first time that I can recall when Blizzard have made a non-combat pet region-exclusive. However with the promise of a Jade Green Panda (most likely a gift to compensate all the millions of Chinese players who have been without WoW for weeks during the transition from The9 to NetEase) I don't think it will be the last.

So, dear readers, what do you feel about region-specific pets? Do you think they're a great idea to reward gamers in a specific region? Not got a Battle Bot and a feeling a little neglected? Do you think Blizzard should just give every players the ability to get a pet rather than make it region/account specific?

Breakfast Topic: What do you think of region-specific pets? originally appeared on WoW.com on Sun, 14 Jun 2009 08:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Arcane Brilliance: Highly ineffective! - Sat, 13 Jun 2009 21:00:00 EST



Each week Arcane Brilliance puts on its game face and comes to play. It always gives 110% and leaves everything on the field. In fact, you might say that Arcane Brilliance just wants it more than the other team. Or something.

I think we can all agree that the first few Mega Man games were awesome. In case you just moved here from rural Nepal, or were raised Amish, or just awoke from a thirty-year coma or something, let me tell you why. The graphics were astounding for the era, the music was and always will be some of the catchiest game music ever created, and the games were incredibly challenging and fun. The Mega Man series introduced us to an awesome gameplay concept: you start out as a small blue robot with a tiny little pea-shooter on his arm, but each time you kill one of the games multiple robotic bosses, you get to use its special weapon from that point on. You kill Crash Man, you get to use his bombs. Take out Quick Man, you get to use his sweet, sweet boomerangs. Metal Man lends you the use of his metal blades. Much like in WoW, each time you bested one of the game's bosses, you couldn't wait to see what new weapon would drop from him. You worked your way through each level, dying repeatedly, trying out new strategies, until you finally downed the boss and claimed your reward, and for the most part, the reward was worth the effort.

Except for Mega Man 2's Bubble Man. His weapon sucked. It was called the Bubble Lead, and it was terrible. This special weapon was a large ball that rolled along the ground really, really slowly, crushing the dreams of young gamers everywhere as it went. It was kind of powerful when it hit, but so cumbersome and difficult to use that nobody ever bothered. The first time you equipped it and tried it out, excited to see what your new weapon could do, you watched that big slow ball of disappointment roll across the screen, and you swore to never use it again. Then you got to the last boss and discovered that the Bubble Lead was the only weapon that could really damage it. Yes, Mega Man 2 is awesome, but it is also iron-clad proof that game designers in the 80's hated us.

Similarly there are several spells in World of Warcraft that also suck. Every class has a couple. And though Mages are otherwise awesome, even we have a couple of bona fide stinkers.

Continue reading Arcane Brilliance: Highly ineffective!

Arcane Brilliance: Highly ineffective! originally appeared on WoW.com on Sat, 13 Jun 2009 21:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Laguna Art Museum hosts WoW art exhibit - Sat, 13 Jun 2009 20:00:00 EST


Chris Caesar of the Orange County Register got to check out Blizzard's newest exhibition at the Laguna Art Museum in Laguna Beach, CA, and as you can see above, is niiiiiice. The exhibition centers around the art of World of Warcraft, and is called "WoW: An Emerging Media Phenomenon," offering up fourteen different artists' takes on the wide world of Azeroth. And it comes with swag, apparently: you pay for a certain package to come visit the show, and all the packages, starting at "Lvl 30" for $15 all the way up to "Lvl 80" for $125, come with free stuff, from an illustrated "exhibition manual" to free t-shirts and a copy of "The Art of the Trading Card Game."

The event runs through October 4th, so if you're planning to spend some extra time wandering around southern California for BlizzCon, we're sure they'd love to see you (in fact, we wouldn't put it past them to have scheduled this event specifically around BlizzCon -- sneaky art museum types). And finally, they're also hosting a series of panels from different artists in the exhibit, all discussing how a digital game like World of Warcraft has affected their art. You can check out some of the art in the show over in the Register's gallery -- with art from the TCG, the official game art, and even some student work, it looks like they've got a whole bunch of great work on display.

Laguna Art Museum hosts WoW art exhibit originally appeared on WoW.com on Sat, 13 Jun 2009 20:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The Colosseum: Retrospective, Spring 2009 - Sat, 13 Jun 2009 18:00:00 EST



The Colosseum takes us inside the world of the Gladiator (Brutal, Vengeful, Merciless, and otherwise), to interview some of the top Arena fighters in the battlegroups. Our goal is to bring a better understanding of the strategy, makeup, and work that goes into dueling it out for fame, fortune, and Netherdrakes.

It's been six months since the last time we summarized our collection of Colosseum interviews. With at least a season and a half of Wrath of the Lich King now behind us, now's a great time to look over the gladiators who've shared their experiences. We've had Paladins, Hunters, Death Knights, Paladins, a Shaman, Paladins, and even a Warlock. There are certainly common themes among these discussions. By comparing them, we can hope to get a better idea of what's going on this season.

Continue reading The Colosseum: Retrospective, Spring 2009

The Colosseum: Retrospective, Spring 2009 originally appeared on WoW.com on Sat, 13 Jun 2009 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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A WoW player's guide to Free Realms - Sat, 13 Jun 2009 16:00:00 EST


Our good friends at Massively have written up a post just for you WoW players about the new hotness in MMOs lately, a game called Free Realms. I haven't gotten a chance to play it, but it's all the team over there can talk about, and the game itself just hit a whopping three million players. It's a free-to-play game (with more premium memberships getting more features -- the minimum is about $5 a month) put out by Sony Online Entertainment that aims towards a more casual audience, with extra content placed in for more hardcore gamers. The questing and leveling itself is very forgiving -- you have a dotted green line leading you to quest targets, and combat only takes place in instanced areas. But the crafting and other various minigames (in order to do mining, you actually play a Bejewelled-style matching game, and there's even a "Kart Driver" profession) can get pretty hard. Just like WoW, those who want to collect pets or build skills can do that, while those who are more interested in dungeon crawling have that option as well.

I've been meaning to pick up the game and check it out (on the free level, of course -- with my WoW subscription running, I'm not made of MMO money), and Massively's guide is an excellent first overview to how the game relates to our favorite MMO. If you're getting a little bored in Azeroth waiting for the next expansion announcement and are looking for something else to try, Free Realms might just be it.

A WoW player's guide to Free Realms originally appeared on WoW.com on Sat, 13 Jun 2009 16:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Vote for your favorite fan-made Arena - Sat, 13 Jun 2009 14:00:00 EST


Arena Junkies has an appropriately-themed contest going on over at their site where they asked their community of high-rated Arena players to design their own Arena. The community was quick to whip out everything from pencils to 3D programs and came up with a pretty good selection of possible Arena maps. How good were the maps? Well, let's just say I'd take any of the submissions over the awful Ring of Valor Arena. Alright, so maybe that's not a good gauge... but it's worth going over the entries to see what creative ideas the Arena-enthusiastic community have come up with.

The top three winners will receive tickets to BlizzCon while registered Arena Junkies users who vote for the winning maps have a chance to win a Blizzard Authenticator. Pretty cool prizes for a pretty cool contest, so head over to their site and register if you haven't already. New Arena maps would be a welcome addition to the game and conceivably not too much work considering no new mechanics need to be in place unlike the Battlegrounds, which have different objectives. In fact, new Battlegrounds maps using the same mechanics would be an interesting addition to break the tedium.

Vote for your favorite fan-made Arena originally appeared on WoW.com on Sat, 13 Jun 2009 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Reminder: BlizzCon tickets need final names by 5pm PDT today - Sat, 13 Jun 2009 13:00:00 EST


We want to take a moment to remind folks that today at 5:00 p.m. PDT / 8:00 p.m. EDT is the last possible moment you have to change the names on your BlizzCon tickets.

The person who bought the tickets will receive a separate email for each ticket (sometime in the future) that will contain a barcode that must be printed off and presented with a valid photo ID at the time the tickets are picked up. That ID must match the name on the ticket, no exceptions.

If you do not enter names on each ticket by 5 p.m. PDT today, the tickets will be put in the name of the person who purchased them (via the Battle.net account). That person will then have to pick up the tickets and distribute them accordingly. The only time IDs will be checked is upon ticket pick up, not upon entering the venue.

Some folks at WoW.com have bought tickets for friends, and we all went around and made sure the names were exactly right last night. You should do the same!

In order to change the names on your tickets, log into your account management page over at https://us.battle.net/account/management/ and go to your order history. There, you'll see the BlizzCon ticket purchase, which you can click and be presented with the tickets and name change options.

WoW.com will be there in force this year, we have right now over 10 people going, so it'll be a blast for sure. We're planning our Thursday night reader meet up, and will have extensive coverage throughout the convention right here!

Reminder: BlizzCon tickets need final names by 5pm PDT today originally appeared on WoW.com on Sat, 13 Jun 2009 13:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WoW Insider Show live this afternoon on Ustream - Sat, 13 Jun 2009 11:40:00 EST
Our podcast is back on the air again today, and it's going to be a good one: not only will Turpster and I welcome back Amanda Dean, but Eddie "Brigwyn" Carrington, our newest writer here on the site, will join us to talk about his experiences blogging and playing his Hunter. And of course we'll chat about the most popular posts of the past week, including those mount and travel changes that are raising such a fuss, the Mountain Dew Battle-bots, and why an Authenticator (probably) can't steer you wrong. Plus, we'll answer your emails -- we've gotten quite a few movie posters from Turpster's suggestion last week, so stay tuned to hear about those (and you'll be able to see them here on our post next Monday).

Tune in this afternoon over on the our Ustream page at June 13, 2009 3:30 PM EDT , or you can jump after the break to see an embedded feed. It should be a good time as always, so stop by and say hi if you're around.

Continue reading WoW Insider Show live this afternoon on Ustream

WoW Insider Show live this afternoon on Ustream originally appeared on WoW.com on Sat, 13 Jun 2009 11:40:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Around Azeroth: River deep, mountain high - Sat, 13 Jun 2009 10:00:00 EST


Deathtoes of <Wrath of Honor> on Argent Dawn is attempting to live up to his name in this screenshot, as he prepares to take a leap into oblivion. Don't do it, Deathtoes! You have so much to unlive for! Of course, being a gnome, he could just be testing out whether the wings attached to his helmet are functioning or not. Gnomish engineering: a great career for those who survive.

Do you have any unusual, beautiful or interesting World of Warcraft images that are just collecting dust in your screenshots folder? We'd love to see them on Around Azeroth! Sharing your screenshot is as simple as e-mailing aroundazeroth@gmail.com 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. Please include the word "Azeroth" in your post so it does not get swept into the spam bin. We strongly prefer full screen shots without the UI showing -- use alt-Z to remove it. Please, no more battleground scoreboards, gold seller ads, or pictures of the Ninja Turtles in Dalaran.

Around Azeroth: River deep, mountain high originally appeared on WoW.com on Sat, 13 Jun 2009 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WRUP: Now with 100% more Twitter - Sat, 13 Jun 2009 09:00:00 EST


Summer is upon us -- and with it the promise of plenty of sunshine, occasional bouts of heatstroke, and lots of good reasons to stay indoors where it's cool and air-conditioned. (Anyway, in a couple of weeks we'll be able to enjoy all the fun of the Midsummer Fire Festival from our desks, won't we?) Our sunlight-addled brains have decided to make this week's WRUP more friendly to our friends and allies on Twitter -- sure, a lot of you follow us on @wowinsider, but if you're really into this social networking thing, maybe you'd like to stalk er, follow our writers individually. For your stalking following convenience, everyone's Twitter name is listed alongside their weekend plans. (Save for the clever, clever people who either don't use Twitter or won't confess to using Twitter.)

Onward, dear readers, into the breach! See what the WoW.com staff is up to in game this weekend -- and let us know what you're playing, too!

Continue reading WRUP: Now with 100% more Twitter

WRUP: Now with 100% more Twitter originally appeared on WoW.com on Sat, 13 Jun 2009 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Breakfast Topic: How old is your character? - Sat, 13 Jun 2009 08:00:00 EST
Bricu of WTT: [RP] put forth a pretty thought-provoking question the other day: How old are your characters? From one point of view, that's pretty simple. You do a quick /played, report back the number of days it returns, and there you go. But, especially for those of us who roleplay, it can sometimes go a bit deeper. Sometimes, we take our characters across games.

Of course, this doesn't mean importing characters completely wholesale, you understand. On the RP end, you're still going to want to convert them to be born and bred citizens of Azeroth (or Outland), and either way, you may not be able to convert them to the exact race or class they were. There's just no Human Rangers or Halfling Monks in WoW, more's the pity.

Continue reading Breakfast Topic: How old is your character?

Breakfast Topic: How old is your character? originally appeared on WoW.com on Sat, 13 Jun 2009 08:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The Daily Quest: Long live the Queen - Fri, 12 Jun 2009 20:00:00 EST


We here at WoW.com are on a Daily Quest to bring you interesting, informative and entertaining WoW-related links from around the blogosphere.
  • Be warned, if you don't like loud noises or are currently somewhere that loud noise is unacceptable, the first 4 minutes and 55 seconds of the latest Yogscast (above) is not for you. However, the rest? Gold.
  • The launch of the brand new Magecraft.org has been making waves around the blogs, so all of you Mages out there should give their forums a look!
  • NoStockUI takes a look at eight addons aimed at professions.
  • Episode 47 of the Twisted Nether Blogcast is up for download, this time around it features the author behind Honor's Code!
  • And Two Rogues has a guide to gearing up for PvP as a freshly 80 Rogue.

The Daily Quest: Long live the Queen originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 12 Jun 2009 20:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Phat Loot Phriday: Fang of Oblivion - Fri, 12 Jun 2009 19:00:00 EST


We haven't done a dagger in a while, if my memory serves. Plus, this one is made of stars.

Name: Fang of Oblivion (Wowhead, Thottbot, WoWDB)
Type: Epic Unique One-hand Dagger
Damage/Speed: 271-407 / 1.80 (188.3 DPS)
Attributes:
  • +47 Agility, +54 Stamina, and a Yellow Socket, which will probably let you add to crit, hit or haste, depending on what you need more of, with a +4 Agility socket bonus.
  • +1869 Feral attack power, so you can do more damage in your new kitty form.

Continue reading Phat Loot Phriday: Fang of Oblivion

Phat Loot Phriday: Fang of Oblivion originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 12 Jun 2009 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Christie Golden signing Saturday in Long Island - Fri, 12 Jun 2009 18:00:00 EST
Warcraft book author Christie Golden (who, you'll probably remember, wrote Arthas, the book our guys loved so much) will be signing copies of that book at a bookstore called the Book Revue in Huntington, NY this Saturday at 7pm. In a quick interview with Newsday there, she also talks about both her background in fantasy and sci-fi (she remembers the days when sci-fi and fantasy were seen as silly diversions rather than premises for multi-million dollar movies and videogames, as do most of us older nerds, probably) and her experience with WoW. She says that having the chance to jump in and virtually visit the actual setting of her books is a real plus when doing research -- if she has a question about the layout of Stormwind, she can go over to that city and check it out herself.

If you're in or near Long Island and are a Christie Golden fan or are looking for something Warcraft-y and fun to do on Saturday, there you go. She's got more information on her blog about the signing (looks like she'll be reading as well). If you do go, let us know how it went.

Christie Golden signing Saturday in Long Island originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 12 Jun 2009 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Popular scams and how to avoid them - Fri, 12 Jun 2009 17:00:00 EST


We have a lot of reports of scams coming in to our tip line and many of us are receiving the same phishing emails you are. Even Scott Kurtz from PvPOnline was tweeting about getting one the other day. These scams can be initiated via email to any one of your email addresses. Or they may start in game. Regardless of where they attack you, most of the scams require some form of social engineering to get your info and therefore access to your in-game valuables.

What is social engineering? Social engineering is manipulating victims to volunteer personal information about themselves in order to perpetrate a con, scam, fraud, etc. If you have seen the movie Groundhog Day, then you have seen a very good example of it. Phil, a television weatherman, is living the same day over and over. One iteration of his morning, he asks an attractive woman her name, where she went to highschool and her English teacher. The next iteration of his morning, he "accidentally" runs into her and pretends to know her from highschool, resulting in her going to bed with him.

Continue reading Popular scams and how to avoid them

Popular scams and how to avoid them originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 12 Jun 2009 17:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Addon Spotlight: Essential addons for raid leaders - Fri, 12 Jun 2009 16:00:00 EST

Addon Spotlight takes a look at the little bits of Lua and XML that make our interfaces special. From bar mods to unit frames and beyond, if it goes in your Addons folder, we'll cover it here.

A reader wrote in a few days ago with the question "What add ons would you consider helpful/essential for a new raid leader?", and as a raid leader myself, I thought it was such a good question that I'm devoting this Addon Spotlight to it.

Deadly Boss Mods

Boss mods are very helpful for all raiders, of course, but particularly crucial for raid leaders, who need to call out when raiders need to do things. If you're not familiar with boss mods, they basically aim to tell you any information about boss abilities that you might need to know during a fight. For instance, on XT-002, boss mods will tell you if anyone has a bomb debuff, when XT is about to throw a Tantrum, how long the heart has left, and so on.

Continue reading Addon Spotlight: Essential addons for raid leaders

Addon Spotlight: Essential addons for raid leaders originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 12 Jun 2009 16:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Insider Trader: Profession-specific buffs part 2 - Fri, 12 Jun 2009 15:00:00 EST


Insider Trader is your inside line on making, selling, buying and using player-made products.

Last week, Insider Trader discussed the profession-only bonuses associated with Inscription, Jewelcrafting and Enchanting. This week, I'm going to walk you through the rest of them, and include a final summary and comparison at the end.

Tailoring Perks

Tailors have the ability to enchant their own cloaks. Other players can get cloak enchants from Enchanters, although the Tailoring ones are superior in many cases.
  • Darkglow Embroidery: Chance to restore 300 mana on spell cast. There seems to be a 60 second internal cooldown, with a proc rate of 35%, which is equal to 25 mp5.
  • Lightweave Embroidery: Chance on spell cast to increase your spellpower by 250 for 15 seconds.
  • Swordguard Embroidery: Chance for melee and ranged attacks to sometimes increase your attack power by 300 for 15 seconds.
There seems to be a 45 second internal cooldown on Lightweave and Swordguard, meaning that for 15 seconds out of every 45 seconds (+, if you don't proc it on the next hit, but they do seem to proc within a hit or three), you have the effect. This averages out to 83 SP, and 100 AP respectively, in ideal conditions. Depending on your luck with procs, the average decreases the longer it takes you to proc it again.

For example, after 45 seconds, each spell has a chance to proc the effect. If you managed it at the 50 second mark, the average becomes +75 SP.

Casters who are not Tailors can currently choose between Enchant Cloak - Wisdom and Enchant Cloak - Greater Speed.

Wisdom grants you a measly 10 spirit, as well as a now obsolete 2% threat reduction. The +23 haste rating is nice, but provides neither mana nor spellpower.

Enchant Cloak - Major Agility grants you +22 agility to cloak. Agility is inefficient to everyone except rogues, hunters, shamans and druid cats, who would get +22 AP from it as well as the crit/dodge/armor. In terms of attack power alone, the Swordguard enchant is the clear winner.

Continue reading Insider Trader: Profession-specific buffs part 2

Insider Trader: Profession-specific buffs part 2 originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 12 Jun 2009 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Isle of Conquest details released - Fri, 12 Jun 2009 14:30:00 EST


Vaneras has just released the details for the Isle of Conquest, the new battleground that will be appearing in Patch 3.2, Call of the Crusade.

You can read the complete details over on the official forums or check 'em out after the break. There are some key things that everyone should be aware of:
  • IoC will be a 40-man battleground. Yes, you read that right. This is the first 40-man content released since Naxx 1.0. That is going to make some old school players very, very happy. I know I'm already giddy with excitement.
  • There will be significant use of siege and vehicle combat. This includes going on The Airship Hanger and using parachutes to drop teams onto the enemy keep from above.
  • You will need to kill a general held up in the enemy keep, much like Alterac Valley.
  • Reinforcements will be used. Capture resources to boost your strength.
This looks like an amazing new battleground, and one that I'm sure many of us cannot wait to try out on the PTR. There has been a ton of new information about Patch 3.2 released in the last few days, so it looks like PTR might be soonish. Keep your fingers crossed.

The complete statement on the new Isle of Conquest after the break!

Continue reading Isle of Conquest details released

Isle of Conquest details released originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 12 Jun 2009 14:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Totem Talk: Analysis of Shaman Q&A - Fri, 12 Jun 2009 14:00:00 EST


This week saw the first of Blizzard's class Q&A columns. Amazingly, we shamans got to go first. While Eliah already covered the basics for us, I thought going in depth with the discussion would be worthwhile. There's a lot of information in the Q&A as a whole to go over and discuss. For example:

  • One longer-term change we are considering is removing the buff totems (replacing them with normal spells) and making all of the totems do something more active, like the current damage or healing totems. We've even discussed letting shamans carry a totem on their back (the tauren do it already) but that may be too far out there.
No, no it's not too out there. Make it happen, make it happen now please. I don't care if you have to make a new weapon category that only shamans can equip for this to happen, I want to see shamans with those great big honking totems on their backs already.

Continue reading Totem Talk: Analysis of Shaman Q&A

Totem Talk: Analysis of Shaman Q&A originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 12 Jun 2009 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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