Another Twitter recommendation for Phat Loot Phriday this week, this one from @MEA_Alex. Probably our last piece of Naxx gear, too -- next time we'll get into Ulduar, as there is some really awesome stuff in there, too. Name: Death's Bite (Wowhead, Thottbot, WoWDigger) Type: Epic Two-Hand Axe Damage/Speed: 554-831 / 3.40 (203.7 DPS) Attributes:
+101 Strength, +114 Stamina
Improves hit rating by 62, and crit strike rating by 90.
Insider Traderis your inside line on making, selling, buying and using player-made products.
If you are a Scribe who has not yet stepped into the glyph market since patch 3.1 went live on Tuesday, April 14th, then you'd better hustle!
As we discussed pre-patch, the glyph market is undergoing a radical shift. For a limited time, perhaps very limited, it is soaring to epic heights. Unfortunately, this will not last, and I expect the market to take a sobering downturn in the next couple of weeks.
This upswing is also affecting related markets, such as those for inks and herbs, and although we will likely see a bit of a price crash once the glyph market deteriorates, these should stabilize relatively quickly.
Today, I will be reviewing why and how the glyph market is changing, and make some predictions for the future. I will also discuss how you can earn some of this post-patch wealth, as well as ways to continue making some profit even after the demand for glyphs drops. I will also be pointing you to some interesting stories around the web of how other Scribes are cashing in this week!
What can I say, I enjoy musical theatre as long as I don't actually have to go to it. (Did you know that was Murray Head, Anthony Stewart Head's older brother? I didn't.)
So for the past few days I've spent my in game time divided between 10 and 25 man Ulduar. I've almost moved into the place, really: save for the first day the patch dropped, I pretty much only log on to pick up consumables and flasks and head back to Storm Peaks. In part this is due to my personal life, as I actually have slightly less time to play now than I did before so almost all of that in game time has to be concentrated, and partly it's just been for the fun of seeing new boss fights. My guild is a 'learn as you go' kind of guild, so we're not worrying about PTR runs or prepared boss strats, we're going in and seeing what works for us, which so far has killed the four bosses in the Colossal Forge section. Razorscale died with three people up, but hey, a kill's a kill.
So far in Ulduar from a warrior perspective, I can say certain things.
Congratulations, Argent Champion! You've progressed past the Valiant rank and become a true Champion of the Argent Tournament. You're the finest that the Tournament has to offer and you've made your city proud.
And that means playtime's over ... again.
Yep, it's time to kill some Scourge outside Icecrown Citadel again, but this time you're after their commanders, the ones you've so deftly avoided in the past.
The Queue: Rested - Fri, 17 Apr 2009 17:00:00 EST Welcome back to The Queue, WoW Insider's daily Q&A column where the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Alex Ziebart will be your host today.
Good afternoon, folks. I want to take a second to apologize for The Queue's absence the last couple of days. Patch days pretty much murder Adam and I, so we set this thing aside for a couple of days. We're much less busy now though, so it should be back on schedule! thatoneguy asked...
"So is the Argent Tournament a one time thing or is it going to keep coming back? I'm kinda worried i'll miss it if I reroll with a friend."
The Warlock community was in an uproar over the extremely quick hotfix that Blizzard applied to nerf Conflagrate among other niggling issues with the recent Patch 3.1. Aside from the fact that nerfs are never a fun thing, Warlock players pointed out that Death Knights, while acknowledged by Blizzard to be overpowered, reigned for months before getting nerfed (somewhat) in the latest patch. Warlocks also pointed an accusatory finger at Holy Paladins, who dominated Arenas throughout Season 5 and promptly got a fix along with Death Knights.
On the other hand. it took all of 24 hours for Warlocks to enjoy insane Conflagrate numbers, which was promptly fixed. Ghostcrawler explain why through a lengthy response over at the forums, noting that Death Knights were imbalanced for more reasons than a simply overpowered spell coefficient. He also said that Death Knights and Paladins were nerfed over the course of several patches leading to Patch 3.1, but none proved to be enough to balance them.
It needs to be said that Death Knights were changed the most in this patch, with talent trees completely revised, some notable abilities removed (oh, Shadow of Death, how we'll miss you...), and class mechanics changed. It's quite possible that even these changes won't curb Death Knight dominance, but it's a massive change that simply isn't hotfixable. It's a fair response and a pretty good read. Ghostcrawler makes several important points, one of which is that players shouldn't feel that developers don't love them. So don't be emo.
Warrior: Fury 18/53/0. Paladin: 0/0/0, which means you need to log in, Paladins! Also 51/5/15 for Holy. Hunter: 0/0/0 wins here, too, but Survival (6/14/51) comes in next. Rogue: Combat 15/51/5. Priest: 14/57/0 for Holy. Death Knight: 17/0/54 Unholy. Shaman: Elemental 57/14/0. Mage: 0/53/18 Fire. Warlock: 0/41/30 Destruction. Druid: 14/0/57 Restoration, which surprised me.
Keep in mind that these are from only a small sample of the game, so they're not the most popular specs in the game, just the most popular among those surveyed by the 3D Armory. And unfortunately, unlike TalentChic, it doesn't look like there's any way to see where the points are going, just the distribution of points among the trees (though that reminds us that Blizzard probably has some amazing point-by-point stats on how popular talents are).
Yesterday, Ensidia earned the world-first Yogg-Saron kill. This is not the world-first Ulduar clear, because Algalon is designed to be the hardest boss in there, but that's a story for another post. What I want to talk about here is loot.
Specifically, I want to talk about the quality of Yoggy's goods, which is the same as the quality of every other drop in normal-mode Ulduar-25: ilvl 226 for armor, and ilvl 232 for weapons. The same pattern holds on 10-man, with Yogg-10's drops being ilvl 219, like the rest of Uld-10. This is a departure from previous tradition, where the last boss of a raid would drop items of higher caliber. Kel'Thuzad, for instance, drops items a full tier above the rest of Naxx (ilvl 213 vs. 200 on 10-man, ilvl 226 vs 213 on 25-man).
Back way before patch 3.1 was on the PTRs, the first concrete information we got about the patch was a round of class previews from the CMs. Over the course of about a week Blizzard showed us a few changes they were thinking about implementing for each class. Some (most?) got implemented in the live patch (like Savage Defense), and some got scrapped completely, like Power Word: Barrier.
It was made clear all along that these were only provisional changes, subject to modification as the patch progressed through the PTR and onto the live realms. Still, some players are upset that what they see as "promised" changes did not come true. Invoking the spirit of "this is why we can't have nice things," Ghostcrawler warns that he's "not sure if we will do previews for patch 3.2 given the response this time around."
Today's Moviewatch is another music video. Surfing with the Alien is a song performed by guitarist Joe Satriani, who's about as well-qualified a musician as you could hope to hear. Kakashisan built this video as a backdrop to the instrumental, giving action to Satriani's song.
This video is going to be one of my long-term favorites. In my opinion, it's damned near perfect. Satriani's music is astoundingly good, and Kakashisan didn't try and overwhelm that music by over-producing his video. The imagery is basic, streamlined, and not complex. The action doesn't distract the audience from what we're hearing.
While Kakashisan does use the same L70ETC models that every other music video uses, he made a very key change in the lead guitarist. The blood elf is bald, like Joe Satriani himself. It's a subtle touch that lends a lot of credibility to the video, backing up Kakashisan's homage to the original artist. The carpet chase mirrors Surfing's sense of motion, without trying to add false narrative.
Sometimes, "simple" works best. I would not say Kakashisan's work is "simple," of course, but I will say that he kept his context appropriate to the work. I look forward to seeing more like this.
If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com. Previously on Moviewatch .
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.
Daily Quest Viewer is my favorite kind of addon: it solves one problem well. It tells you what today's daily quests are, enabling you to stop pestering your guild (or the trade channel) for information. My guild has developed a policy of putting the daily dungeon and daily heroic in the message of the day, but that only works if an officer has managed to check the dailies and update the message.
While in Durotar one morning, the felsteed of Aphaeresis of <Hall of Mirrors> on The Scryers took a moment to enjoy a refreshing change of scenery. Durotar may be a bleak desert land, but it's certainly nicer than the steed's usual location. Hanging out in the netherspace with that annoying imp, dull voidwalker and inappropriately flirty succubus, waiting to be summoned? Not my idea of a fun time. Now, if there were an incubus in-game, maybe ...
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 email@example.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, double-mounts, or pictures of the Ninja Turtles in Dalaran.
We've seen some awesome Warcraft-related cakes before, but this one is probably the most literal we've come across -- it's an actual representation of a laptop, complete with what looks like a to-scale keyboard, and little letters etched on the keys. Sure, it's a little more pillowy and frosted than your average MacBook, but that edible paper screenshot does look really cool. And before someone in the comments asks: what addon is that around the ability buttons?
You can see all of the other cakes we've collected so far in the gallery below. And as always, if you spot (or even make) a WoW-related confectionary contraption, drop us a note so we can check it out.
The PCGA claims that this isn't a big setback -- despite this and a few other losses, they say their numbers have grown, and they cite a few other big still-members, including Microsoft, Nvidia, and Intel. But given how much of an influence Activsion-Blizzard is in PC gaming, it's hard to say you're the "authoritative voice" of the platform when you don't have any formal connection to the biggest developer/publisher in the industry.
What does this mean to us players? Probably nothing right now -- the PCGA is right: the loss of Activision probably won't affect their work at all. But Blizzard, for better or worse, is being steered by Activision away from the industry at large. Right now, with events like BlizzCon and a huge reputation of their own, they don't need to be tied into these industry groups. But that may not always be the case.
One of the things which kept me in Azeroth -- at least long enough for the addictive side of the game to set in -- was the promise of exploration. I originally rolled a human mage and still remember at level five, being taken all the way from Elwynn Forest to Darnassus. Bear in mind though, this was back before The Burning Crusade when being Alliance meant traveling from the Eastern Kingdoms to Kalimdor took a good forty minutes if you didn't have the flight paths or a mount. You had to get the tram to Ironforge then run the gauntlet of death to Menethil, catch the boat to Theramore, get another to Auberdine and then fly or get another boat to Teldrassil. The whole trip really showed me how big the world was, as well as teaching me all about threat and my ability to aggro everything in a three-zone radius.
So when I rolled my druid, the day before the expansion hit, I was determined to see as much as this beautifully crafted world as I could. Yes, I essentially had a death wish. I was exploring Outland with an honour guard of my guildies at level 10 (and hearthed in Shattrath), I ran through the Arathi Highlands at level thirty, swam through Un'Goro Crater in my forties and was pushing the boundaries of Shattrath by my fifties.
However along the way I found some amazing places: the crystal filled cave at Marshal's Refuge, the boughs where the Dragons of Nightmare can occasionally be found, the first time you run into Azuregos in Azshara, the Twin Colossals of Feralas -- well the eastern one at any rate. Then when I got my flying mount I really started exploring properly.Nagrand alone is full of nooks and crannies and I adore the beauty of Crystalsong Forest.
So come on, readers, I want to know if you've explored all the hidden places of Azeroth and Outland. Do you have any favourites? You do? Great, be sure to tell us about them in the comments box.
We're getting reports in of Vodka scoring the first Yogg-Saron kill on North American realms. Vodka had been one of the top guilds in the US throughout Tier 7 raiding, and are quickly solidifying their position at #1 (#2 in the world.) That leaves Algalon as the final boss left to down in Ulduar, along with almost all of the hard modes. Yogg-Saron isn't the end of the race, not nearly. Ensidia and Vodka have a lot more work ahead of them to win this thing. The loot consisted of...
I cropped the screenshot above which was submitted to me via an anonymous tipster to hide any glimpse of Yogg-Saron, so we don't spoil the show for those who care about that sort of thing. If you want to see the full screenshot, you can see the full version here, which also contains the tooltips for all of the items I wasn't able to link above.
Congratulations to Vodka, and good luck getting to Algalon!
Zarkmark tries to help you rate PuG players - Thu, 16 Apr 2009 21:00:00 EST There have been a number of sites lately, especially with the recent rise in endgame pickup groups, designed to help you find and examine potential PuGgers quickly. But none of them have made it quite as easy as Zarkmark, a site that allows you to quickly rate anybody you come across ingame by "zarking" (rating them up) or "marking" (rating them down) them. Then, they offer a quick search, which will not only give you a one-click link to the Armory, but an easy-to-read screen of how many people have rated the player you're looking at. Theoretically, ninjas will never find a group again.
Of course, theory is theory, and right now, the Zarkmark directory is pretty empty, so odds are that for any given player you look up, you won't really get much feedback. But you never know -- if players jump in and populate the site (and it wouldn't help to have a little help from them -- instead of just an Armory link, it would be nice to see a player's gear and achievements right there on the page), we might eventually get a pretty accurate picture of what someone's reputation looks like.
In fact, I'm a little surprised that Blizzard hasn't ever considered a reputation system in-game. Xbox Live carries one off pretty well -- even though I've never actually used it to consider who I do and don't play against, I have rated players and I know it's very easy to see scores if I wanted to. Given the rising numbers of VoA ninjas and PuGing in general, it might be worth it for them to give each player a socially-created rating in the LFG interface.
Scattered Shots is your weekly guide to improving your Hunter skills, brought to you by Jessica "Lassirra" Klein of The Hunter's Mark, covering a wide variety of Huntery topics. Today, we'll be looking at some prominent historic figures in Hunter lore.
For Hunters looking to get into role playing, a good place to start is to look at the Hunters that came before you to get a feel for common themes upon which you can base your character concept. There are many prominent Hunters in Blizzard lore that spans multiple Warcraft titles, both for the Horde and the Alliance, which you can look to for inspiration. Today, I'd like to spend some time getting to know some of the great Hunters of Azeroth.
The Wordy Warrior has added to their series of "10 Ways..." posts with today's 10 Ways to Make Your Guild Love You. Whereas her first couple of posts in the series were aimed at the rank and file of a guild or raid, aiming to warm up to your raid leaders or guild officers, this one is aimed at those very officers. How do you get the rank and file to like you?
As a Guild Leader, I absolutely agree with the points she puts forth, and I recommend this list to any guild officer, especially those that are just getting started with their guild. Over the last four years of being a GM, the #1 thing I've learned is that there are absolutely real faces behind those pixels, and you need to know how to interact with those people. You need to get to know them, you need to try and be a little personal with them, and you should know how to talk to them. Everyone is a little bit different.