Earlier today, Thundgot of the offiical EU forums announced a couple of free character migrations for EU PvP realms. The transfers are an attempt to move some players from a few overly populated PvP realms to some that could use a little help. These transfers are available from December 17th (yesterday) to December 23rd. The open transfers are:
From: Burning Legion, Drak'thul, Sylvanas To: Ahn'Qiraj, Burning Blade, Xavius
From: Magtheridon (Horde only) To: Haomarush, Zenedar
With gear upgrades these days being so easy to come by, I'm not so sure 'welfare epics' is such an accurate term for PvP gear anymore. That said, Arena Season 5 started the other day without so much as a whimper. It kind of crept in quietly, without even a patch to go along with it. I'm sure it's taken a few players by surprise to see so many new PvP gear available from different sources that it can get confusing. I know I wrote about it in an old post, but quite a bit has changed since Beta, and some things don't quite apply. Don't worry, we're here to help you make sense of it all. First of all, in the new PvP rewards system there are three tiers of PvP gear. The Savage Gladiator, Hateful Gladiator, and Deadly Gladiator are equivalent to Level 80 dungeon blues, 10-man raid epics, and 25-man raid epics respectively, with a lot of item points thrown in the way of Resilience and sometimes Stamina. These items aren't the best for PvE, so gear accordingly. You'll be wasting a lot of item points by way of Resilience, so keep in mind that all this new gear is best for your Battleground and Arena pursuits.
First and foremost, chain trapping is out. On a normal trap, a Hunter can lay down a trap early, and get past the extra 10 second cooldown on getting the trap up again, which means they can have another trap pick up the same mob when the first one finishes its duration. But pulling with Freezing Arrow means you can't lay down the trap early, which means that the 10 second cooldown will always be in effect: there will be ten seconds after the trap comes up before the Hunter can Freezing Arrow again.
There are loopholes, as AotH says: Resourcefulness can help Survival Hunters with the cooldown a bit, and Readiness means a Hunter can throw out two Arrows in a row (but no more than that). And of course positioning helps a lot -- if a Hunter can lay down a Freezing Arrow early and then kite a mob into it, chain trapping is theoretically possible (though with casters, it's going to be really tough, just because you have to move so much to get them to move after you). But non-Hunters beware: Freezing Arrow is good for trapping a mob for about 20 seconds. After that, you're on your own.
Slow Fall castable on others in 3.0.8 - Thu, 18 Dec 2008 17:00:00 EST Christian caught this one in his last Arcane Brilliance column, but I figured the rest of us non-Mages might like to know as well: Slow Fall will be castable on others in patch 3.0.8. Very exciting -- while there are a few other Slow Fall buffs in the game (and lots of parachutes, from all the vehicles in Northrend), now all you need to jump down from a high point in the game is a friendly Mage. We expect to see a nice jump up in the number of Slow Fall videos. Which, come to think of it, we haven't seen that many of lately. Guess the whole "flying mounts" thing has made Slow Falling for long distances not so interesting.
And while we're at it, before you say that you need Slow Fall to get the Going Down? achievement, you don't. First of all, it won't work, and secondly, there's a better way to do it: as you've probably heard by now, you can do it just by jumping off of the platform on the Scryers Tier in Shattrath onto the little canopy hanging over from the Lower City below. Everybody has their own place for that, of course, but that's the easiest.
Still, it'll be nice to have Slow Fall for everyone -- we can throw it on the list with Levitate as a class ability that's been spread around a bit. Is it still too limited to include in game mechanics? Could we maybe have an instance boss in the future that we fight with while falling down a long mineshaft, or on a falling platform?
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.
Another day, more Q&A. Let's just get started, eh?
I'm facing a bit of a dillemma. I've got a level 80 druid (Feral). a 70 warlock waiting to be levelled and a fresh new Death Knight (and many many other alts which I dont feel like levelling at the moment) I've recently spent almost 3K Gold in new tanking gear,enchantments and gems for my druid and the following day I went a bit emo and lost interest in the druid. To make things worse Allison wrote the article about how feral druids are doing in comparison with the other in-game tanks.
Shall I just stick with my druid and hope that better days will come or shall I focus on a different character?
If you want to go try out your new Mechanostrider or Chocob...err...Hawkstrider mount; see what kind of nerfs or buffs have hit your favorite class; number-crunch the PvP changes; or check out any of the myriad changes coming up in 3.0.8 - now is the time!
It's not in the 3.0.8patch notes, but apparently Paladins should expect removal of all threat from Judgement of Light in the next patch. This is being done to address the wonky nature of JoL threat -- since for fights in which large portions of the raid are taking damage it gives a huge threat boost via healing threat, while for fights in which only a few raid members are taking damage it only gives a small threat boost via healing threat. Or to put it concisely, as forum poster Tippocabra did, "threat from Judgement of Light is not consistent." The new "no threat" JoL should be nothing if not consistent, though it has some tanking Paladins concerned about reduced threat. (For Retribution or Holy Paladins who have ever found themselves using JoL in a group situation, however, the threat decrease can only be a good thing.) Ghostcrawler assures us, however, that this is not meant to nerf Protection Paladin threat -- and though he doesn't go into specifics, we have to assume that means the threat Protadins would previously receive from JoL will be coming from elsewhere.
Fresh from the forums, a note of a nice holiday event planned by the players of Deeprun Pest Control on the European Aggramar server. They're planning a costume party, a gift giveaway (for the whole server!) and even invite the Horde to come join the festivities on level 1 alts. Now, I'm an infamous Scrooge... ask anyone who knows me, or even people who don't... and even I think this sounds like fun, so kudos to the folks at DPC for putting it together.
Remember, Kharanos, Aggramar EU server, 21:00 hours server time (thats 9 pm for those of us like me who have to stop and count backwards when presented with a logical time system) the festivities begin. I don't know about you, but I'm inspired to blatantly steal this idea and am feverishly working on a plan to convince people on my server to go along with it.
The healer shortage and how to fix it - Thu, 18 Dec 2008 14:00:00 EST The Tank Shortage is a topic that's come up a few times before, though thankfully, since the release of Wrath, Death Knights have more or less solved the situation. But the issue facing us now is just as dire: a Healer Shortage. Ghostcrawler acknowledges that there may be such a shortage on the forums, and he gives two reasons: first, lots of people are still working their way up to level 80, and the majority of healers may still be leveling through Northrend. And second, they've beefed up and changed a lot of DPS builds lately, so many pre-Wrath healers may have respecced DPS to try it or to level a bit, and haven't gone back yet.
Later, he backpedals a bit -- not everyone is experiencing a healer shortage, and while he's already told us Blizzard is working on ways to make healing more "fun," he also points out that some people enjoy the whack-a-mole game. Still, just because a problem isn't affecting everyone doesn't mean it's a problem: it's true that lots of groups are having trouble finding healers, and lots of healers would rather not watch health bars all day.
We're very curious to see what changes Blizzard might have in mind for healing -- we discussed quite a few on the healer podcast a while back, including making healing spells a little less attention-intensive, and giving healers some UI ways to keep their eyes on the fight rather than their party members. And of course, if the rumors are true, we'll hopefully have a new healer Hero class to come and fill in the blanks. GC says this isn't a matter of tweaking things in one patch, so we are definitely a few patches away, but there is hope for healers on the horizon.
Gear! Let us continue our discussion of gear in five man instances, for we are shamans, and we have more interesting things to talk about. Like love. Or DPS. I like talking about DPS more than love, to be honest, I'm not specced for love with anyone but my wife. (She's a very specific boss in this regard.) Healing's good too, we could also talk about that. I found myself healing a Halls of Stone/Lightning run (is anyone else noticing that they end up running more instances back to back in Wrath?) in enhancement spec (resto gear) the other day, and I freely admit I wished I was resto several times on that run. Well, we made it through, anyway. But a HoT would have been very nice on Ionar. Can I just say now how very much I hate Ionar? A lot. Healing that fight without Riptide is pretty agonizing, especially when you don't have Nature's Swiftness or Earth Shield as well. The tank had to heal himself a couple of times. Lesson learned: it's just more fun to heal as resto. Oh, please let dual specs come soon, Santa.
As I'm inching up the levels on the shammy and considering if I want to raid on him (I've been considering raiding as resto or enhance, haven't decided yet) I'm looking to the Storm Peaks instances as a source for upgrades. What can we find there? I've also begun making forays to the Culling of Stratholme in prep for when I start running it over and over again on heroic for the fist weapon. I mean, for no reason at all! There's no fist weapon here! Don't even run the instance! (Whew, I think they bought it.)
Tryton created Dragonball Z: Trouble on Arlia, pt I by putting Dragonball Z's soundtrack on top of World of Warcraft graphics. This isn't the first time Tryton's created Dragonball Z WoW machinima, as we've featured his work before. I guess he must be a pretty big fan.
The animation is actually really well done. I like the character models he chose, and I thought the settings, effects, and mis en scene all came together very well. That being said, without the character context or background story information, I didn't feel like I had much clue what was going on. That's probably just my lack of familiarity with Dragonball Z, though, and I can totally cop to that. I was, however, somewhat disappointed not to see anyone shouting "It's over 9000!"
Hopefully, the second part will actually happen, and we'll be able to see where the story goes. I'd encourage Tryton to try and create his own script, eventually. His moviemaking skills are definitely there, and I'd like to see what original content he may create.
If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.
Draenei lady Chocolate Snackoo knows there's nothing better than a good Terry Pratchett quote, so she sent this screenshot with the tagline "And she dreamed the dream of all those who publish books, which was to have so much gold in your pockets that you would have to employ two people just to hold your trousers up." True, that fits, but she could also be imitating Scrooge McDuck or the dragon from The Hobbit. Coincidentally, this is also the mental picture that flits through my head whenever I fill out law school applications.
Do you have any unusual World of Warcraft images that are just collecting dust in your screenshots folder? We'd love to see it on Around Azeroth! Sharing your screenshot is as simple as e-mailing 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.
Now that you've taken a look at the zone, it's time to understand how to play the game. The battle for Lake Wintergrasp is one of the most fun parts of the game today -- it's certainly my favorite thing, such that I sometimes only log in whenever I know there's a battle. The great thing about Wintergrasp is that there are numerous battles throughout the day. It's the game's best mini-game, and I'm looking forward to seeing it get even more awesome as more and more players reach Level 80 and Blizzard makes improvements to the zone.
Pre-game An hour before each battle, an NPC in Dalaran -- Arcanist Braedin for the Alliance and Magister Surdiel for the Horde -- will yell that a battle will soon begin. He will repeat this battle cry again at thirty, fifteen, ten, and five minutes in order to alert the inhabitants of Dalaran to hopefully drive players into going to the zone. To make it easy, portals to Wintergrasp appear at the Silver Enclave and Sunreaver's Sanctuary.
Generally, a portal to Wintergrasp appears in Dalaran for the controlling faction and observably disappears about an hour before battles begin. This usually means that defenders must make their way through flying mounts into the zone before the battle begins or wait until the game ensues whereupon their faction's respective Wintergrasp Battle-Mages will open a portal to allow reinforcements. Defenders will port directly in front of Wintergrap Keep, where the Titan Relic is housed, while players on offense will port into their respective landing camps -- the Horde on the West side, and the Alliance on the East.
Yeah, it's not Friday, I know. But seeing how easy it is to get loot in Northrend, I've been thinking about all the sweet loot we've been getting so far. A Rogue who joined our Guild run last night for the first time in 25-man Naxxramas got an epic from almost every boss we downed, ending up with him getting an epic upgrade in five slots in one run. It was like Christmas came early. On the other hand, a Paladin in plate like my character has to compete with all the newfangled Death Knights. Still, I managed to finagle a Shoulderguards of the Undaunted in that run, a piece with enough +Hit that it helped free up some of my gem slots and enchants for other things.
Overall, we had such a great run last night that about a third of the raid got upgrades. How about you? What's the phattest loot you've gotten so far? With the PvP items now available, I'm fairly certain some of you picked up some sweet Hateful Gladiator gear. I made sure to pick up my Medallion of the Horde before anything else, so that was pretty phat for me. What cool epic did you get this week? If you don't have an epic yet, I'm sure you've got more than a few blues. What cool thing did you purchase or dropped for you recently? With so much easy loot going around in Northrend, I'm curious to know what everybody's gotten so far.
Felicia Day on having Microsoft as a Guildmate - Wed, 17 Dec 2008 20:30:00 EST In this day and age, you have to applaud geeks who take their ideas and make good on them. Take, for example, Felicia Day. Talented, beautiful, and geeky to boot, Felicia recognized that all the drama we know and love as part of MMO culture would make for one hell of a sitcom. She could have quit after networks repeatedly turned her down or told her they didn't get it, but she stuck to her guns. Producing the show herself and releasing it to YouTube, she's become a pretty epic Internet celebrity in her own right. Since then, The Guild has built up enough buzz that when it came time to distribute Season 2, she apparently had several offers to choose from. (No real shocker there!)
Why choose to sign up with Microsoft, then? Well, okay, beyond being able to send your video out on Xbox Live - which is pretty geeky from where I'm at - Microsoft isn't generally known as a heavy player in the sitcom business. According to Felicia in an interview with the Los Angeles Times, Microsoft is not only is willing to distribute The Guild on Xbox Live, for Zune, and on MSN Video in high-definition, but they're also allowing her to keep full creative control and ownership of all of the work. The deal lets Microsoft have it exclusively for four weeks up to the end of the season, but after that period, she's free to post it to YouTube (or wherever she wants, really) so anyone who doesn't own a Zune, isn't on Live, or willing to surf over to MSN Video can still enjoy the second season of The Guild.
I just hope that Felicia and crew will keep us laughing with their geeky hijinks for a long time to come. Short of letting a baby nom on a powerstrip (and if you've seen that in real life, I don't envy you) there's quite a bit of The Guild that rings home with MMO geeks. Much like Jell-O, there's always room for more geeky humor - and more of the awesome cast of The Guild!
For our Wrath Dailies series thus far, we've been trying to do them in groups. For example, we did the Kalu'ak dailies first, and now Adam is going through the Cooking dailies. I've decided to jump out of order for this one, because it's actually somewhat important beyond just another daily quest. This quest is actually training for Phase 3 of the Malygos encounter, in which you do battle with the Aspect of Magic from the back of a red drake.
You pick up Aces High! from Corastrasza on the Band of Transmutation, one of the floating platforms around The Nexus. If you've never done it before, head down to the Transitus Shield, there's a quest that will tell you exactly where to go. Practicing with this quest will make the fight much, much easier when you fight Malygos one day, because the abilities the Drake has in this quest are the exact same as the ones in that fight.
Sprucing up your commenter icon on WoW Insider - Wed, 17 Dec 2008 18:00:00 EST I have to say, it takes a lot for you commenters to hurt me, but I was a little hurt that no one, as far as I've seen, has noticed that you're all Ogres now. Our own Zach Yonzon created some fun little Ogre art, and all of our default commenter icons (if you haven't yet changed yours by clicking on your name after commenting and logging into Blogsmith) are now grinning cartoon Ogres. I thought people would be shocked when we first put the change in about a month ago (we also considered turning everyone into Murlocs and/or Peons), but it doesn't seem like anyone noticed at all.
As I said, if you want to change yours, just click on your name after you make a comment, and then you can login on that page with the password you normally use as a "Returning Member" in our comments (and yes we know the system is lame -- if you have issues, usually the best thing to do is to leave a comment as a "New Reader" again, and use a new email address if you haven't ever gotten the email that gets sent to you). Maybe you all just like being Ogres, but if you want to show a little personality with your icon in our comments section, feel free.
The many benefits of being a high-level Cook - Wed, 17 Dec 2008 17:00:00 EST I agree with Relmstein: Cooking is awesome. Unlike, say, fishing (which I said on the podcast last week will never really stop being boring, since boring is "working as intended" for that one), cooking has really transitioned over the years. Back in the day, it was kind of a silly way to make new foods to eat, in Burning Crusade it became a pretty solid extra buff to have, and it Wrath it has really become a necessity for anyone looking to make their characters and their raids the best they can be.
Plus, as Relmstein notes, there's added functionality -- the feasts let you lay out an entire meal for your party, and the addition of the Dalaran cooking quests (and the recipe rewards) have turned the daily cooking quests from just a few extra gold and mats per day into a whole currency system on its own. Fooding it up ingame has become a minigame of its own, and with food giving out such diverse (and significant) stat bonuses, not to mention that it often fetches great prices on the AH, there's no reason for your level 80 character to not have worked a little bit on leveling up cooking.
Sold yet? One of the last things I did at level 70 was level up both cooking and fishing using El's Angling's great guide, and though it took me the better part of two weekends in a row, it's paid off many times over since. Cooking has definitely moved from kind of a fun third profession to mess around with to something that will seriously benefit you as a character in quite a few ways.
Vehicle mounts to work more like mounts than vehicles - Wed, 17 Dec 2008 16:00:00 EST Here's an interesting mount change -- it probably won't change the way you actually use your mounts, but it is a behind-the-scenes glimpse into how vehicles are working out at Blizzard. Zarhym says that in a future patch (maybe as soon as 3.1), all "vehicle" mounts will be changed back into regular mounts. Right now, when you "summon" a flying carpet, it actually shows up as a vehicle to the game, unlike a normal mount, which is basically just an extension of your character. But after the change comes down (whenever that is), summonable vehicle mounts (which may or may not include the Chopper?) will work just like regular mounts.
This won't mean much in the actual UI (though it may change where your mount is saved -- I haven't picked up a vehicle mount yet, so I'm not sure if they appear on the mounts screen or not), but what it does mean is that Blizzard is stepping back from the vehicle interface. It's been buggy from the beginning, since beta and even after release, and while it's unlikely Blizzard will remove vehicles from the game, at least for the mount/vehicles, they're planning to go with the old mount code rather than have everyone using the vehicle code for that.
Interesting change. Hopefully Blizzard is also still working on tightening up the vehicle code -- it's never fun to jump into a siege tank and then discover that none of the abilities work. But for these mounts at least, they're backing off and going back to the old way.
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.
Yesterday we were talking about the Bros Before Ho Ho Ho's achievement a bit. Specifically, do you need to be level 77 to get it if you're a Horde player? Most of us thought yes, you do, but stacy (one of our readers) popped in with some pretty creative instructions on how to do it. Check that out, then we'll get on with the Q&A!
Anyone know a good place to fall to get the "Going Down?" achievement?