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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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All the World's a Stage: Authentic class - Sun, 17 Feb 2008 17:55:00 EST

All the World's a Stage is a source for roleplaying ideas, suggestions, and discussions. It is published every Sunday evening.

Sometimes it can be difficult make your character feel really authentic. Very likely, you work in an office in real life, for instance, and perhaps you daydream of burning up all your paperwork. You certainly don't cast hellfire and summon demons to wreak havoc upon the world, so naturally you have no personal understanding of how a warlock would really behave.

Of course it helps to do some research on the lore behind your class, but in fact even lore writers are only imagining. No one in the world has practical experience of what any of the Warcraft classes would be like. Even classes like priests and hunters are so heavily fantasized that there is a great difference between the class and its real-life namesake.

Imaginative extrapolation is the name of the game here, and as always when imagining things, it helps to try and root your character's class-based behavior around some tried-and-true character quirks, things that will make everyone who interacts with you feel compelled to say to themselves, "Wow! That's just the sort of thing a <insert your class here> would do!"
Read on for some practical quirks, with links to more resources on the characteristics each class would display.

Continue reading All the World's a Stage: Authentic class

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A WotLK preview hidden in the 2.4 Patch Files: The Tuskarr - Sun, 17 Feb 2008 17:00:00 EST


We've already speculated a bit on whether Blizzard's been slipping some early WotLK stuff into the 2.4 patch files with Holyform, but World of Raids and a tipster of ours by the name of Verth have dug up something that's definitely straight out of Northrend: a Tuskarr Male.

What we know so far about the Tuskarr is that they'll be based primarily in the Borean Tundra and be fighting the Naga with help from Garrosh Hellscream, who will be overseeing the Horde settlement of Warsong Hold there. What we don't know is why we got a model in game so soon. Could it be that we'll start seeing preparations in-game for the voyage to Northrend soon? Maybe we'll see a Tuskarr Ambassador in Thrall's chambers. Either way, it's always nice to get a bit more new expansion news, and we'll be on the lookout to see if this guy's smiling face shows up soon.

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Forum post of the day: BOE Vortexes - Sun, 17 Feb 2008 16:45:00 EST

In a post entitled BOE Vortexes a SLAP in the FACE to CRAFTERS Solarissa of Korgath claims that changes on the public test realm for patch 2.4 would devalue the efforts of crafters. She says that allowing players to purchase or farm their own materials would greatly reduce profits for crafters who have invested vast amounts of time in farming materials for their epic patterns, such as the Belt of Blasting. Instead of hefty auction house prices, they would receive meager tips for their crafting efforts. Disenchanted crafters believe that this change would make it so there is no way at all to earn money with trade skills.

Responses vary from stalwart agreement to arguments that this change would actually drive up the prices for crafted items. Sylindra of Moonrunner is pleased with the change. She feels that it unfair for non-crafters to have to pass on Nether Vortexes since they could only be used by players whose primary characters were crafters. The materials could go into guild banks, or be given to non-crafters to sell on the auction house for a tidy profit of their own.

Continue reading Forum post of the day: BOE Vortexes

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Don't underestimate the Isle of Quel'Danas - Sun, 17 Feb 2008 14:00:00 EST
Patch 2.4 supplies a great amount of solo content along with the new 5-man dungeon and raid zone, but there is one thing that you should remember stepping onto the Isle of Quel'Danas: This content is not the same difficulty level as everything else we've done so far.

The dungeon and raid aren't the only things that have progressed the difficulty of the game, the solo content is more challenging as well. While the respawn rates on mobs may be turned down on the Live servers compared to what they are on the PTR, the fact remains that some of these baddies are not to be underestimated. Even the new bombing run is more difficult, though less likely to kill you than the others. When Ogri'la and Skettis were first released, they were a bit of a death trap. Most people went into them in a daze, expecting to nap through the little battles like the zones we had done before. The reality was, though, that it was quite a bit harder than that. Until we adjusted to the difficulty and played a little smarter, it was death city.

Quel'Danas is about the same. It isn't incredibly difficult, but it is a step up from what we've seen so far. Tread lightly, bring lots of bandages. If you're brand new to level 70 and your gear is... well, junk, then you might want to group with some friends for the new daily quests. And uh, don't be like me and go AFK in the middle of enemy territory and expect to come back 10 minutes later unharmed. That probably isn't going to go well for you.

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Two Bosses Enter: Illidan Stormrage vs The Twin Emperors - Sun, 17 Feb 2008 13:00:00 EST


Two bosses will enter... but only one will get to leave! Every week at WoW Insider, we pit two of the baddest bosses in the World of Warcraft against one another in a fantasy death match -- in the end to emerge with a single boss of bosses, victorious above all others. And the best part? You get to tell us who walks away the winner and who doesn't get to leave our arena at all.

Today, the terror of the Black Temple, Illidan Stormrage throws down against Ahn'Qiraj's double trouble, The Twin Emperors. Who will survive to move on to the Final Four and who will face defeat at the hands of a superior foe? Read on for the details and the chance to cast your vote

Continue reading Two Bosses Enter: Illidan Stormrage vs The Twin Emperors

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WoW Moviewatch: Voyage - Sun, 17 Feb 2008 12:00:00 EST

From the WoW machinimator that brought you 300 Moonkins comes Voyage, a mixed-media adventure. Voodooray blended music, machinima, and clips from both music videos and real movies to create an alternate reality. In fact, it's so convincing that he had to post what he did to it for us to believe him!

He included scenes from 300, Underworld, and two different music videos. In some of them, he even digitally removed the real actors! Look out for cameos by Salma Hayek, Baron Soosdon's Nikita, and a crazy looking bird.

[Via Warcraftmovies.com]

Previously on Moviewatch ...

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I spent how much on my alt? - Sun, 17 Feb 2008 11:00:00 EST
Just this weekend I did something I never expected I would do: Spent 5,000 gold on epic flight. On my main? Oh no, I've had that for months now. I spent 5,000 gold on my alt. My alt! Good gravy!

Honestly, I don't really regret it, it's mostly the shock of spending that much gold on an alt that gets me. I'll definitely be putting the epic gryphon to good use, I play my alt quite a bit. Like I mentioned in another recent post, my alt is almost my second main. Pretty much full epics, has seen the insides of Zul'Aman, Tempest Keep and Serpentshrine, capped Blacksmithing, all of that. The fact remains, though, it is an alt. 5,000 gold on an alt!

I can't be the only one crazy enough to do this, am I? Surely there are others with alts that have epic flight? Most of my friends poked fun at me about it, but besides waiting for Wrath of the Lich King, what am I going to use that money for anyway? I suppose I could feast on Stormwind Brie instead but I have a feeling an epic gryphon is a little more useful, no?

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Around Azeroth: The Karazhan gryphon roost - Sun, 17 Feb 2008 10:00:00 EST


Player Natala of The Shining Dawn guild on Quel'Thalas was on a Karazhan run when he spied this far away gryphon roost. He used his Far Sight ability to get us a closer look at it. As far as we know, it is unused and remains a mystery other than one lore reference Natala cites: it was used frequently by Medivh and Khadgar in the novel "The Last Guardian". Does anyone else know if this obscure flightpath serves any purpose?

Do you have any unusual World of Warcraft images that are just collecting dust in your screenshots folder? Because we'd love to see it on Around Azeroth! Sharing your screenshot is as simple as e-mailing aroundazeroth@wowinsider.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. We prefer full screen shots without the UI showing. And please, no more sunsets. No, really. Ok, only if it's a sunrise in new Patch 2.4 lands. We'll take those anytime. Oh, and no more shots of Omen killed in Ogrimmar. It's cool, we get it. A lot of it.

Gallery: Around Azeroth

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The Eredar Twins dead in PTR - Sun, 17 Feb 2008 09:37:00 EST


Vis Maior once again adds another PTR first by slaying the Eredar Twins, Lady Sacrolash and Grand Warlock Alythess (courtesy of worldofraids). If you were fortunate enough, you were one of the 1300+ viewers of their live stream when they killed the 4th boss of the new Sunwell raid instance. The loots were:

Band of Ruinous Delight
Grip of Mannoroth
Shroud of Redeemed Souls
Sin'dorei Pendant of Conquest
Essence of the Immortals

According to their Ustream schedule, they're at it again at 9:00 p.m.(EST) tonight.

Video of their kill inside.

Continue reading The Eredar Twins dead in PTR

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Sunday Morning Funnies: Swindle my kindle - Sun, 17 Feb 2008 09:30:00 EST
It's Sunday morning on a holiday weekend, and we've got the funny stuff. From a star-struck quest to an inventive new attack, to some puns that backfire, this week you're sure to be entertained.

  1. Thanks to Andrew for the tip on Awkward Zombie's first WoW-themed comic, due to the artist having recently subscribed to WoW. Check out Swindling Kindling!
  2. Also check out Grimfate's mage envy with this Comic Contest Honorable Mention!
  3. Clutch Time from Action Trip.
  4. Dark Legacy Comics presents Keydar isn't Punny.
  5. From Extra Life comes Questing of the Stars.
  6. Shakes and Fidget visit A New World. Check out get buffed for more comics.
  7. GUComics wants you to Stop Crying.
  8. LFG #121.
  9. Silent...Deadly from Ding!
If you've already picked out your favorite, make the jump to give it your vote!

Continue reading Sunday Morning Funnies: Swindle my kindle

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Bank declines Blizzard charges - Sun, 17 Feb 2008 09:00:00 EST

It seems that keyloggers and phishers are not the only fraudsters infiltrating World of Warcraft. Halifax, a bank in the United Kingdom has ceased processing most transactions with Blizzard Entertainment. This measure was taken in response to increasing numbers of reports fraudulent transactions for WoW services. I had a similar issue with another bank based in the United States. That institution saw my recurring Blizzard charge as suspicious. Once I contacted them to verify my subscriptions my credit card was quickly returned to an active status.

In this case, the only fault on Blizzard's is making an astoundingly popular, subscription-based RPG. Do be on the lookout for unexpected transactions from Blizzard Entertainment and be sure to report them to your bank as soon as possible. Representatives from Blizzard Entertainment declined interviews with the Register, which investigated this phenomenon.

Do not be surprised if the transaction for your WoW subscription is refused in the near future. Halifax customers can use their credit cards to pay for their WoW subscriptions by making special arrangements with their account services department. If you would like to continue to use your Halifx Visa or Master card, be sure to contact customer support for authentication.

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Breakfast Topic: Your WoW personality - Sun, 17 Feb 2008 08:00:00 EST

I have a friend who doesn't play WoW, but his roommate does. As a psychologist, my friend is a more astute observer of individual behavior than I am. At lunch one day, he theorized that we tend to play World of Warcraft with the same attitude that have in the real world. On this surface this statement seemed to be correct. People in game and in life vary from kind, helpful souls to nasty boorish trolls.

I like to think of myself as WYSIWYG (what you see what you get). I try to portray myself online with the same values that I feel define me as a person. I set goals and work hard to achieve them. I consider myself a good friend. Every once in a while I go too far and take on the role of martyr in both game and in life. This is something I'm proud of; on the contrary, I wish I could stop myself from doing it.

Continue reading Breakfast Topic: Your WoW personality

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Your Christmas gift could be hacking your WoW account - Sun, 17 Feb 2008 02:30:00 EST


Hackers seem to be trying more and more ways to get legitimate accounts out of players hands and working to steal and farm more gold, but if you think they've had some sneaky schemes in the past, you ain't seen nothing yet. Our colleagues at Massively have a story that's both amazing and disturbing at the same time.

A lot of geeks found a digital photo frame under the tree this year. Seems like a good idea, I'm sure a lot of us have a pretty large collection of digital photographs stored on memory cards and flash drives that we just haven't quite gotten around to printing for display.

Unfortunately, certain frames sold at Best Buy, Target, Costco and Sam's Club come with an extra undocumented feature, in that they have a nasty little bug that's being dubbed Mocmex. The bug can burrow its way into your computer, latch itself in, and sniff out account information. It doesn't seem to affect Linux or Macs, at least not in its current form, but right now there doesn't seem to be a single manufacturer or frame type that's infected, so the origin of the bug hasn't been nailed down.

If you think you've got one of the infected picture frames, Massively recommends contacting the SANS institute and calling the store where the frame was purchased. You can check their story for the contact information.

The upside of this, I suppose, is that if the farmers are starting to branch into using peripherals to steal our accounts, they may be getting pretty desperate. The downside is, when we have people who practice safe web browsing and keep a clean computer getting bitten, like our Amanda Dean for example, we could be in some trouble. With any luck, all the major virus programs will have a cure for Mocmex and programs like it soon. In the meantime, it looks like we'll have to be extra careful about what we install on our computers, and make sure our anti-virus programs and firewalls are up to date.

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My log off spot - Sat, 16 Feb 2008 20:00:00 EST
Many of us that have played the game every day over the years have developed some habits of sort. One of the habits that I've found myself doing night after night is logging off in the same spot. For me, this spot is at the staff vendor in the Aldor section of Shattrath. I find myself logging off here almost every night since I hearth back to Shat when I'm done raiding, and then go and repair immediately (less I get yelled at for not being fully repaired).

I can imagine that there are some better spots than others to log off at. In particular the PvP servers I'm sure pose certain pragmatic limitations on where you can disembark from the game. In the PvE world, I could (if I wanted to) log off anywhere in the wild. Save for the wandering aggressive mob, I would be just fine. However, I don't think this would be too good in a PvP environment.

Continue reading My log off spot

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Brutallus encounter hotfix - Sat, 16 Feb 2008 19:30:00 EST


A few days ago it was reported on the PTR that those dastardly evildoers of dastardly deeds (aka: Warlocks) managed to enslave Brutallus. These vile locks then took their newly enslaved demon out to play. And playing for a creature of pure darkness means letting them wreak havoc onto the unsuspecting citizens of the Isle of Quel'Danas. I would have expected a hotfix to this almost immediately, and some form of public announcement that the bug has been fixed. However as of Saturday at 7 p.m. EST, there has been no such luck. Instead, Blizzard decided to hotfix the Brutallus encounter inside Sunwell Plateau, the new 25 man raid.

The hotfixes Blizzard has given the encounter are:

Continue reading Brutallus encounter hotfix

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Curse's terms of use deserve a closer look - Sat, 16 Feb 2008 19:00:00 EST
There's a storm brewing over in the UI & Macros forum, and it's about the terms of use for popular add-on site Curse. If you use mods at all, you're almost certainly aware of the site; I go there all the time. They're probably the biggest mod site right now. So it comes as something of a surprise to me that such a pillar of the scene would have what seems to be a pretty abusive set of terms service.

According to the analysis conducted in this forum thread, Curse's ToU "specifically removes any and all copyright that we as authors have on our addons." Yikes!

There are other bad parts of the ToU language too, including that Curse can change the ToU at any time without notifying authors. Of course, the site is within its rights to impose any ToU it wants on the users, but it's not nice to take control of creations out of authors' hands. I am not a lawyer, so it's altogether possible that I'm interpreting some of this incorrectly. The forum thread, however, claims that lawyers looked at Curse's terms and agreed that the interpretation is correct.

Until these provisions are changed -- and Curse promises that they will be -- I recommend mod authors use other sites like WoWInterface or wowui.incgamers.com. In writing this article I read the terms of use for those sites -- or rather, tried to. IncGamers doesn't even have their ToU up! But they've been a pretty well-behaved site in the past (they used to be worldofwar.net), so I trust them. WoWInterface's terms of service didn't seem to have anything like what Curse has, and a source at the site assured me that "we never touch an author's zip file without their knowledge and consent, ever." WI has a good history of respecting the community and the authors. Curse folks, are we all reading this wrong? Is there something in this issue that's being missed?

Update: As several of Curse's employees have helpfully pointed out to me, the new ToU are much better. However, I still have reservations about them.

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Forum post of the day: These are the people in your raid - Sat, 16 Feb 2008 18:00:00 EST

When you put five, ten, twenty-five, or forty people together you're bound to come across people who annoy, amaze, and amuse you. Peri on Terokkar posted a list of raid archetypes who may seem familiar to you. Some highlights of her post include:

  • The GM's Significant Other- Okay, so he was going to have to quit but he tricked his SO into playing. She loves it. She's terrible. You'll effectively 24 man every boss. Count on 4 constructs in the raid, every attempt. She plays a Belf.
  • The Backbone- Plays a tank. Doesn't have much to say. Made an error once in SSC, or so you heard. Will disconnect when Gorefiend is at 30% and keep aggro while offline for the rest of the fight. Has never said anything negative to the healers. Ever. GL with your progression without one of these. Hates the prima donnas.
  • The Prima Donna- Requires special attention from management. Constantly whining. Plays some vital role. Might be a main tank, mage tank, or lock tank. The officers really hate this guy and as soon as they can find another tank with 24,000 buffed HP, he's out.

Continue reading Forum post of the day: These are the people in your raid

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Patch 2.4 laced with Elixir of Giant Growth - Sat, 16 Feb 2008 17:00:00 EST
The latest build of patch 2.4 on the PTR bucks the trend of the ever-shrinking orc and draenei shoulder pads by treating us to monstrously large weaponry. Truly, this is a sign that Blizzard loves us and wants us to be happy. There is not a thing in this world that comes to mind when I try to think of something that makes me squeal in delight as much as a gigantic sword swirling through the air, or my enemies slamming into my massive shield and bouncing off uselessly.

In all seriousness, this is probably a bug and some of it actually looks pretty ridiculous. When I first noticed it, I almost wondered if my paladin had actually shrunk because I had long ago adjusted to her Crest of the Sha'tar being amusingly small. It would be nice to have a shield that wasn't tiny like a bean, but an increase in size on everything in the game just doesn't seem intentional.

To give you a better idea of how much of an increase I mean, I've included a side by side comparison after the jump. I apologize for the difference in quality between the shots, I've forgotten how to change the format WoW screens are saved in. Hooray!

Continue reading Patch 2.4 laced with Elixir of Giant Growth

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Is the saga of Griftah over? - Sat, 16 Feb 2008 16:00:00 EST
While there's definitely been quite a few changes around Shattrath in 2.4, one thing that stayed the same was good old Griftah. It looked like he might be back to stay, the saga of his betrayal and exile over with his triumphant return to Shattrath, complete with a legitimate piece of merchandise to sell. Which was, in a way, a bit disappointing. After so many patches, seeing what Griftah got up to next was almost a tradition.

Luckily, it looks like we may not quite be done yet. Peacekeeper Jadaar has been standing in the World's End Tavern arguing with Investigator Asric for quite some time now, but if you talk to him, he still acts like he's standing outside Griftah's tent. World Event Designer Kisirani answered someone's question on this by saying it's been on her list and she's getting to it. Certainly, this could mean she just plans to update his speech to explain that the investigation failed and Griftah is back, but then again, it could mean we'll see more of this epic storyline. He may not have ended up being the real Zul'jin, but maybe he's still got a few more tricks up his sleeve. I'm thinking that at the least he'll start selling "genuine artifacts from the first Northrend expeditions" soon. Maybe "Defeat of Illidan Commemorative Coins."

It's definitely a storyline I'd love to see evolve some more. Even if he's not exactly M'uru, Griftah's earned enough of a place in Warcraft lore that he can't just sit comfortably in Lower City pushing trinkets.

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Love no longer in the air - Sat, 16 Feb 2008 15:00:00 EST


Our hearts may return to their regularly scheduled descent into blackness, Azeroth is leaving Valentine's Day behind today. At least, that's what the calendar says.

I hope everyone received all they had hoped for in WoW during this event, or you're in for a mighty long wait to try again. I personally received a number of scandalous dresses and fancy baskets over the course of the last few days. I don't have much to complain about this time around, except for the fact that it is always a little disappointing when one of Azeroth's many holidays comes to a close.

Even if the Valentine's Day holiday is quite fun in WoW, I still have a habit of wondering what could have been done better for any given event. I think it would have been great if voting for your favorite faction leader actually worked, and had some sort of effect. For example, if Tyrande winning for the day gave those that voted for her a buff. "Tyrande's Thanks" or "Sylvanas' Satisfaction" or somesuch. Even if it didn't do anything, having the buff would be really fun. Of course, I'm a big supporter of spells having extra sparkles just for the sake of having sparkles, so maybe only I would be interested in that. After all, Prayer of Mending turning into a laser gun kept me from quitting my priest early on in The Burning Crusade.

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