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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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Clockwork Rocket Bots back in action - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 19:00:00 EST
Let's get it on... again! Yes, while the level 30 mount news got a lot of play, and Rogues had to grapple with the Cheat Death nerf, there was one tasty morsel of news hiding in the patch 2.4.3 notes: Clockwork Rocket Bots will be back up to fighting shape! I've had this Winter's Veil gift in my pack from last December, and was bummed when they removed the ability of the bots to fight each other when summoned out. Now, finally, when two players have them summoned close to each other, the little bots (which look a little bit like Wall-E, don't they?) will throw down.

According to the patch notes, the problem was a little strange, too -- the robots were supposedly attacking other people in the Arena. No idea why the bots would see other players as attackable targets in the Arena, but there you go. Unfortunately, the bots still aren't buffable, as they once were -- it was actually a really fun minigame trying to keep those little bots alive as they fought, but at this point, your bot is on its own. Which means when my bot comes by, your bot better watch its little bot-ty back! Fight!

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Organizing names for the pet name generator - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 18:30:00 EST
Faeldray of Petaholics Anonymous is working on a pet name generator, but first, she needs your help. It's going to be based on her character name generator (called PANDA, an acronym that's too awesome to spell out), which is really more of a collection of great names rather than an actual generator -- it consists of a database of different names categorized by race and gender, so you choose your race and gender, hit a button, and then you've got a bunch of great character names to choose from.

The pet generator will do the same kind of thing, but Fael's not sure how to organize it -- either she's thinking she'll do categories of silly and serious names for each type of pet family, or categories based on what kind of background the name has (as in, fantasy names, silly names, names from myths, etc). Or it sounds like she's open to other ideas. Personally, I'm partial to the idea of seperating names by pet families, and the silly or serious thing seems as good a distinction as any (though most of my pet names tend to be pretty silly anyway).

So head over to her site and vote, or put up a comment with your thoughts on the subject. Can't wait to see the generator!

[via Mania]

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All of that just for a hat - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 18:00:00 EST

To accompany the brand new Tailoring patterns in 2.4.3, a fellow by the name of Don Carlos has been added to WoW. Who is Don Carlos? Don Carlos is an NPC being implemented just outside of Gadgetzan who gives a single quest: Enter Old Hillsbrad, beat up his younger self, and take his hat. What's the reward? Well... his hat!

Let me explain a little further. This old man has a very big hat that he's had for many, many years. He used to duel people for it, but is too old to duel nowadays. You want his hat so bad that you are inspired to travel back in time to beat up his younger self for it. All that to take an old man's hat. Man, you're kind of a jerk.

Yeah, I'm a jerk, too. I ran to Old Hillsbrad immediately. The fight isn't too hard, there are a lot of classes that can solo it on Normal difficulty, especially when overgeared for the instance. To be safe, you may want to take some friends. He wanders up and down the road on horseback, with his friend Guerrero. Guerrero can be crowd controlled, but Carlos cannot. Don Carlos himself roots you, casts Scatter Shot, Aimed Shot, and melees for a decent amount. His crowd control is annoying, but again, he's not too tough. Once you beat him, go acquire your hat, and begin wondereing where the Azerothian equivalent of Spain can be found.

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Totem Talk: Stuff to wear to kill stuff in Karazhan Pt. 3 - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 17:30:00 EST
We're on part three of our exhaustive (well, I'm exhausted, anyway) look at gear that will carry you through Kara (ed note: previous guides can be found here - part 1 - part 2). We've covered every main slot except for hats (we didn't cover hats? Weird) and belts, bracers and boots in previous posts, so today head coverings, weapons and the rings, trinkets and necks are on the agenda. That's a lot to cover, so we may not get into all of it. We also have cloth and leather pieces in mind for a future post, especially for enhancement shamans, and that post may be combined with the rings and other off-slot post if we run long on hats and weapons today.

So let's get this road on the show. I'm fairly certain that is how the phrase goes. Yes, roads on top of shows all over the world. Very hard to actually see any of the exhibits.

We'll begin our excursion into the gear you'd like for the attack on Karazhan with a look at headgear. Headgear is very important because without it, you'd be able to see better and your head wouldn't be sweating as much. Oh, right, and it also has magic and stats and things of that nature, so you should probably wear it. Whether or not you leave the image on or not is up to you, but some hats, you're going to want to turn off. Trust me on this.

Continue reading Totem Talk: Stuff to wear to kill stuff in Karazhan Pt. 3

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Scattered Shots: Leveling 20-30 - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 17:00:00 EST


Scattered Shots = hunter stuff

Two weeks ago we covered some of the new abilities you get from levels 10 to 20 while you progress as a hunter, as well as how to use them to keep your skills sharp. The journey from 20 to 30 is a bit less topsy-turvy. At level 20, of course, you get to start playing with Aspect of the Cheetah and Freezing Trap, which can be a lot of fun, but other than that the new skills you get don't totally change the way you play until you get to level 30 and learn Feign Death. Nonetheless, they deserve a mention.

If you're following the Beast Mastery talent path I laid out last week, then reaching level 20 doesn't give you any super-exciting new abilities either. Your pet will be able to run a bit faster, and will start doing more damage. Once you get the hang of using your Freezing Trap for crowd control, it's pretty much just a straight shot till you reach 30. It may feel a little boring sometimes, but it's really better than a lot of classes have it -- often many classes feel that the 20s are the levels at which the going seems roughest and the class seems weakest because it still lacks a major portion of its abilities. For hunters, it's just more of the same stuff we've been doing up till now.

Continue reading Scattered Shots: Leveling 20-30

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Well Fed Buff: Ogri'la Chicken Fingers - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 16:30:00 EST


Well Fed Buff serves up tasty dishes to boost your HP, stats and appetite - with that special WoW twist, of course.

The fun of whipping up recipes for Well Fed Buff is that, like WoW itself, you can play at so many levels: a Fisherman's Feast for readers who cook, Conjured Croissants for those who don't ... Moonbrook Riot Taffy for those who simply want a snack, or Cherry Grog for players who prefer to avoid slaving over a hot oven at all ... There's something for every play style.

Up this week: a low-level dinner recipe that everyone should work into their basic spec - Ogri'la Chicken Fingers. Attention, casters: no frying is involved, so you can pull this one off at range, without getting into melee on the stovetop.

Continue reading Well Fed Buff: Ogri'la Chicken Fingers

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Know Your Lore: Thrall (part 2) - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 16:00:00 EST

Welcome to Know Your Lore, where each week Alex Ziebart brings you a tasty little morsel of lore to wrap your mind around. Sweet, sweet lore. Mmmm.

Many moons ago, Matthew Rossi began a look at Thrall, one of the most beloved heroes in Warcraft. It was only the first half of Thrall and Grom's Radical Adventure and in a shocking turn of events, most of you actually want us to finish what we started! Man, slavedrivers, the whole lot of ya.

If you haven't read part one of the Thrall saga, you should probably do so. If you have read it, here's a quick recap of what went down so far: Thrall is the son of Durotan, former chieftain of the Frostwolves, who refused to drink the Blood of Mannoroth and was killed because he called Gul'dan a jerk. Aedalas Blackmoore, a drunkard with a lot of power, kept Thrall alive and raised him to be a tool to be used to gather more power for himself. Thrall made friends with Teretha Foxton in his days at Blackmoore's Durnholde Keep, and when Thrall escaped Durnholde many years later, Blackmoore cut off Taretha's head and threw it at the freshly-named Warchief of the New Horde. Thrall rejected this oh-so-kind gift and killed Blackmoore. If you need the details that go in between those notes, well, part one is just over there. Let's move on to the Third War and beyond, shall we?

Continue reading Know Your Lore: Thrall (part 2)

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Barrens Chat: Beggers can't be choosers - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 15:30:00 EST


First of all, a huge thank you to Mike Schramm last week for covering my rear with his hunter comic. And it wasn't so much "kindly accepted" as it was "oh thank goodness, I'm saved" for the record, Mike. Thank you Turpster, also!

Now, back to business (or tomfoolery, I haven't decided which it actually is yet). This week brings us a comic that actually took place in the Barrens. Crossroads to be specific. So once again for those of you who complained commented that the comics should take place in the barrens, your wish has been granted.

Gallery: Barrens Chat


Continue reading Barrens Chat: Beggers can't be choosers

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Epic Gems for Arena points coming with patch 2.4.3 - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 15:00:00 EST

Here's some nice news for Arena PvPers in the area of undocumented 2.4.3 changes: MMO Champion has discovered that the PvP gems that are currently purchasable for honor points are now available for Arena points as well -- 800 points each, to be exact. The full list of gems is as follows:

Continue reading Epic Gems for Arena points coming with patch 2.4.3

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End of Season 3 reward requirements - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 14:30:00 EST

Season 4 starts next week. As a result, this coming weekend is going to be a gladiatorial weekend for many folks, fighting to get their Arena rating high enough to score end of season rewards. Blizzard has posted (on both US and EU forums) a reiteration of the criteria to be considered for those rewards -- they look pretty much the same as they have before.

The requirements for a team to be considered for end of season rewards are:

  • The team must have played at least 20 games during the season.
  • The team must have at least one player that has played in 20% or more of the total games for that team.

Players on a team that qualifies for consideration, must do the below to be counted:

  • The player must have played in 20% or more of the total games for that team
  • The player must have a Personal Rating that is not more than 100 points lower than the Team Rating (your Personal Rating may be higher, however).

So, there it is. If you want to be considered for one of the coveted Arena titles, you must meet the above criteria. Good luck!

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Test the loot items on the PTR - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 14:00:00 EST
We've never seen this one before, but then again, we've never seen a loot item as complicated as that Ethereal Soul-trader before. Blizzard wants to test those new Upper Deck loot items on the PTR, so if you go Landro Longshot in Booty Bay on the test realm only, you can input special test codes for each of the new items: 1111 for the Path of Illidan item, 2222 for the D.I.S.C.O. ball, and 3333 for the one everyone wants: the Ethereal Soul-trader.

The only news coming off of the PTR is that the disco ball object still has the placeholder tag on it ("[PH] Disco ball"), which means the name might be a little more formalized when it actually appears on the live realms. But this testing might answer one of the more pressing questions we've got about the Soul-trader -- we already know that any player (not just the one who summoned it) can exchange the "Etherium" currency that you use to buy items off of the vendor, but does that mean that any players who kill mobs that give experience or honor near the trader can gain currency, or only the person who summoned?

We'd assume that everyone can do it -- in that sense, getting this card is really like opening up a special vendor rather than just getting all the trader's items for yourself. And there's one more bit of news we can take from this: since these cards are going into stores on July 1st, we'll very likely see patch 2.4.3 on the live realms before then. To the PTR!

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Construction begins in Stormwind City - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 13:30:00 EST

Personally, I think one of the most exciting undocumented changes in 2.4.3 is the work being done in Stormwind. The action in the Alliance's heartland isn't limited to the comic book, oh no. Alliance construction workers are breaking their backs day and night to make preparations for the upcoming addition to Stormwind City, the Stormwind Harbor. You can take a look on the PTR between the Park and the Cathedral. I can't help but notice the boatloads of explosives floating in the canals. You would think they would take the back wall of the city down the traditional way, but it looks like the Dwarven workers may be taking lessons from the Gnomes.

Hopefully, this is only the first in a long line of changes to the world leading up to Wrath of the Lich King. Something like that definitely feels like the progress needed in-game to lead up to such a meaningful expansion as far as story goes. Such massive changes to one of the most beloved Alliance cities shouldn't simply happen overnight. We'll see if they continue this while we're on the road to Wrath. Who knows, we may even get a few hints at other world changes we aren't sure about quite yet.

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"Gigantique" and the Gold burn of Patch 2.4.3 - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 13:00:00 EST
It has begun. Anti-inflation measures intended to reduce player Gold before Wrath of the Lich King arrives have been put in place on the test server. Everyone's favorite (or most hated) socialite Haris Pilton has transformed into more than just a nod to bad pop culture, Patch 2.4.3 sees her as the single biggest gold sink in the game. Just like her enterprising real-life counterpart, Pilton has launched a new line of bags and jewelry that is sure to bait some players into parting with their hard-earned Gold.

Pilton's flagship product, the epic "Gigantique" Bag is the only 22-slot bag of any sort and the biggest non item-specific bag available to players. It is bigger than the Pit Lord's Satchel, which drops off Magtheridon; the Sun Touched Satchel which is a zone drop from Magister's Terrace; the Tattered Hexcloth Sack from a quest in Zul'Aman; and even the Phat Loot Friday-featured Primal Mooncloth Bag. At a whopping 1,200 Gold, it's also the most expensive bag from a vendor or otherwise. Clever little Haris has also dissociated herself from The Lower City, so no discounts will be honored and she'll earn full profit from your Gold. The kicker? "Gigantique" Bags aren't unique.

Continue reading "Gigantique" and the Gold burn of Patch 2.4.3

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WoW Moviewatch: Experimental Intro - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 12:00:00 EST

There's no doubt that this video, Experimental Intro, is strange. It's as if Tancredis slapped on every possible effect in After Effects. We're not complaining, though, because the visuals aren't unpleasant, and it beats watching another Blink 182, Linkin Park, or Sum 41 video!

Apparently he created this short clip for a Leotheras kill video, but decided to quit WoW instead. Should he have quit, or should he have finished the video?

[Via Warcraftmovies.com]

If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

Previously on Moviewatch ...

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World of WarCrafts: A gift from the embalmer - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 11:00:00 EST
Every Thursday, Shelbi Roach of The Bronze Kettle guides you in creating WoW-inspired crafts using real world mats with World of WarCrafts.

Who needs a $500 couture bag from Nordstrom when you can sport this abomination? Perfect for toting around diapers, Incriminating Documents, or your pet's favorite toy.

Here is what you will need:

  • Natural Canvas Tote Bag (8.5"x11")
  • Felt (black, charcoal, red, pink, ivory, white)
  • Felt Glue
  • Scissors
  • Wax Paper
Click on the images below to view a gallery of step-by-step instructions.

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Around Azeroth: In the belly of the whale - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 10:00:00 EST

Pity the poor mage, Wanton of <Pants Pirates> on Destromath. While running his blood elf girlfriend, Foxdie, through Maraudon, the couple ended up in one of the least romantic places possible -- inside a crocodile. If you look at this picture close enough, you can see the budding argument in their expressions. Maybe Foxdie should take a look a yesterday's eligible bachelor. (Just kidding -- I'm sure that this run caused no permanent harm to their relationship. Although the Albino Crocscale Boots apparently didn't drop, so there may be a broken mouse or keyboard in there somewhere.)

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 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 -- use alt-Z to remove it. And please, no sunsets or arguments that The Incredible Hulk was even in the same league as Iron Man.

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Azerothian Spore creatures continue to crawl in - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 09:00:00 EST
That Murloc was just the beginning -- since the Spore creature creator demo dropped officially yesterday, and along with this cute little C'thun (thanks, Andrew!), there are a whole crowd of Warcraft-related creatures showing up on the Sporepedia. We've collected our favorites so far in a gallery below -- while you'll need to actually put the creatures in game to see them shuffle, saunter, and dance around in Spore, you can get a pretty good idea of just how versatile Will Wright's little creator is. I've said it before and I'll say it again: while everyone is expecting Warhammer to give WoW a run for its money, the PC game that Blizzard should really be worried about this year is Spore.

If you see any other great Warcraft-related creature creations in Spore, feel free to send them along and you just might see them here. And in the meantime, our sister site BigDownload (who are also hosting the demo) is holding a creature creator contest -- send them your best creature and you could win a EVGA NVIDIA e-GeForce 8800GT, EVGA NVIDIA e-GeForce 9600GT or a free upgrade to the full version of the creature creator game. It's Sporelicious!

Seriously, look at the C'thun. We haven't seen a tentacled, ancient monster this cute since, well, Hello Cthulu.

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Breakfast topic: Cha cha cha changes - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 08:00:00 EST

I have to admit, I was a little bit astonished by news of patch 2.4.3. We know that Blizzard is ramping up for the release of Wrath of the Lich King, as they did for the Burning Crusade. The two things that stand out most to me are the Cheat Death nerf and the reduction of riding skill level requirement to 30. Even as a Cosmo Girl, I don't really care much about Harris Piltion's new line of designer bags. (Unless those bags have 24 slots and don't have tacky, brand-name logos on them.)

I think we can expect more changes in the not-too-distant future. We've already seen the death of most raid attunements. I expect to see the cost of epic flying skill reduced considerably in future patches. The same thing happened with epic land mounts, and long ago Drysc hinted that such a change may be in the works. I'd also like to see an additional character slot or two added to each realm.

What changes do you predict will occur prior to Wrath's release?

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Forum post of the day: Ride your pony - Thu, 19 Jun 2008 02:12:00 EST

I had to look twice at the 2.4.3 patch notes before I could bring myself to believe that the developers are planning on reducing the level requirement for ponying up. It makes a lot of sense, as we ramp up toward Wrath of the Lich King, it will progressively longer to reach the endgame, especially for new characters and particularly new players. The change makes sense to me, and I'm looking forward to Desolace being a less crummy place to level alts. No, you won't get a refund on previously purchased mounts, but nobody got refunds when the cost of the level 60 riding skill decreased either.

The community seems to be having primarily positive reactions to the news that basic mounts will be purchasable by characters at level 30. Ithnnin of Scarlet Crusade (posting on a level 40) feels that this change is an added insult to the game. He feels that Blizzard has spent too much energy catering to a "small new audience." He feels that the changes to make leveling easier have a negative effect on the accomplishments of those who when through the process when it was more difficult.

Continue reading Forum post of the day: Ride your pony

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Understanding the Cheat Death nerf - Wed, 18 Jun 2008 22:00:00 EST
As regular forumgoers may have noted, there's been a lot of antipathy toward rogues in PVP lately. Most of this is based on the newfound popularity of the seventh-tier subtlety talent Cheat Death, which was buffed to mega-awesome proportions. Here's the old Cheat Death:

  • You have a 10/20/30 percent chance to survive any damaging attack that would otherwise kill you.
In patch 2.3, this was changed to:
  • You have a 33/66/100% chance to completely avoid any damaging attack that would otherwise kill you and reduce all damage taken by 90% for 3 sec. This effect cannot occur more than once per minute.
This was even more powerful than it looks -- until 2.4, a bug actually reduced all damage by 99% instead of 90%. However, today's 2.4.3 patch notes stated that the ability will be changed:
  • Killing blows are no longer 100% absorbed. If the Rogue is below 10% health, the killing blow is still completely absorbed; if the Rogue is over 10% health, enough damage will be absorbed to reduce the Rogue's health down to 10%. For the following 3 seconds, damage is not always reduced by 90%; it is now reduced by a maximum of 90%, depending on how much resilience the Rogue has. The damage reduction will be four times the damage reduction resilience causes against critical strikes.
So what does this mean, besides an extremely long tooltip?

Continue reading Understanding the Cheat Death nerf

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