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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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Groupcrafting: The art of getting a group together - Fri, 19 Jun 2009 19:00:00 EST
Tales of the Aggronaut sent us this multipart guide he wrote on one of the things we all do in the game that might nevertheless be tough for a lot of people: actually getting a group together. It sounds like a simple thing (just ask people whether they want to group up or not), but as you probably know from experience, sometimes it can be pretty tough. So TotA set out, instead, to do a from-the-ground-up guide, from how to find and network with people in the game to how to build a group piece-by-piece.

And I like it a lot -- he starts with a preamble with some general networking tips, including finding social channels to join (many guilds and realms have a few social channels constantly filled with folks LFG or interested in playing socially) and putting together a solid friends list, then goes on to explain how to communicate (probably a great read for anyone in any part of the game) and then how to actually build a WoW group, from core classes to splitting up class roles. Very impressive -- while most veteran players have probably heard or done this stuff before, it's nice to see a clear, concise guide that starts at the beginning.

And it's even nicer to see a guide that emphasizes the social aspect of gameplay. Even here at WoW.com, we're all about gameplay tips, from profession insights to class balance discussion, but sometimes we overlook that to play a social game like World of Warcraft, you sometimes need to focus on social skills. As much as theorycrafting and gear upgrading can help, sometimes it's better to learn how to be friendly and social instead.

Groupcrafting: The art of getting a group together originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 19 Jun 2009 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Preparing for BlizzCon: Getting there by air - Fri, 19 Jun 2009 18:00:00 EST


BlizzCon approaches! Preparing for BlizzCon is your regular source for tips on how best to prepare for Blizzard's gaming extravaganza.

You have some time to make travel arrangements for BlizzCon, but you should be aware of your options now and be looking for deals. In general, it is best to make your reservations at least 2 weeks in advance for most carriers, but there are sometimes last minute deals and also specials run periodically. Take your time and choose wisely.

There are many airports in the local area, but here are the 3 best options:
  • Los Angeles: LAX is the largest airport near Anaheim, but is an hour away, with good traffic (a rarity in Los Angeles). Regardless, it may be your cheapest option and most airlines fly there.

Continue reading Preparing for BlizzCon: Getting there by air

Preparing for BlizzCon: Getting there by air originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 19 Jun 2009 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Get addon updates via Twitter or RSS - Fri, 19 Jun 2009 17:00:00 EST
I am pretty notorious for not updating my addons often enough (I think some of the versions I have must be years old by now), but maybe with this, I'll be better: Reader Fin runs a website that tracks RSS updates of addons from most of the database sites, so all you need to do is hook that feed up to your reader of choice, and then whenever a new addon drops (either one that you're waiting for, or all of them, if you just want to watch them go by), you'll see it pop up in your reader, ready for inspection or a download or whatever you like.

He's also hooked it right up to a Twitter feed, so you can also tune in on Twitter and watch the new addons go past. I thought there might be too many going out, and that all those addons might spam up your Twitter feed, but actually if you've got a full slate of follows already (I've got about 200 talkative folks), it's not bad at all -- enough to keep you interested, but not so many that you feel flooded.

Of course, this probably still won't help me get my addons updated -- only putting an extra hour or two of free time in the day will help me accomplish that one. But it'll nice, at least, to know they're out there.

Get addon updates via Twitter or RSS originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 19 Jun 2009 17:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The long wait for a Green Proto-drake - Fri, 19 Jun 2009 16:00:00 EST


The WoW CMs continue their polling of rare and hard-to-find items: first, we got queried on Mr. Pinchy, and now the forums have a poll about that more recent bounty, the Reins of the Green Proto-drake. As you probably already know, you have to first get exalted with the Murloc faction of the Oracles, and then you have to buy a "Mysterious Egg" once every seven days from their quartermaster... that probably hasn't yet given you the mount you want. Personally, I've gotten plenty of Aged Yolks and quite a few noncombat pets, but not my Proto-drake.

And my experience is hardly singular -- according to the poll, a full 55% of respondents have not yet opened up their Cracked Eggs to find the mount. 4% found it on their first try (bastards -- that number seems incredibly high), and almost 14% went for the joke "Oracles?" answer, or maybe just have no idea what the question is about. Obviously this is hardly a scientific poll, so we can't calculate drop rates or anything like that (most database sites put the drop at around 2%, which means on average 50 eggs to a drake, or almost a year of farming), but it's pretty clear that the Proto-drake is a supremely rare commodity.

Continue reading The long wait for a Green Proto-drake

The long wait for a Green Proto-drake originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 19 Jun 2009 16:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Celebrating a guild anniversary in style - Fri, 19 Jun 2009 15:00:00 EST
Pink Pigtail Inn has what is probably the most involved guild anniversary I've ever seen. We've seen quite a few anniversaries and events come through Guildwatch, but this one takes the cake: a huge competitive scavenger hunt, complete with out-of-game clues, banned class abilities (so teams could be balanced out), and even self-made quests involving the guild's lore. It's probably rare to find a group of officers that can be this committed to something normally considered "an RP event," but obviously it worked out, because the whole guild really enjoyed it.

The context Larisa puts this in, however, is even more interesting. According to the Daedalus Project (a series of surveys of MMO players -- we've mentioned their work before), the majority of players can't celebrate a guild's anniversary anyway, as they haven't been in their guilds for even a year yet. I've never considered it, but it's true: while we are very attached to our guildies when we do find a good guild, we aren't really attached to them for very long, relatively speaking. There are stories of guilds going on for decades, but even those guilds have players coming and going -- if your guild has the same group of people playing together for a few years, you're probably in a smaller group than you think. PPI's example is a great one for any guilds who have been around long enough to celebrate it.

Celebrating a guild anniversary in style originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 19 Jun 2009 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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We Have a Tabard: A little help from my friends - Fri, 19 Jun 2009 14:00:00 EST
The We Have a Tabard series is designed to help guild leaders, officers, members achieve their goals to maximize their cooperative experience.

I'm relatively new to leading a raiding guild. I've been working on building and training my team for about six months. I've been leading the recruiting and correcting members, managing raids, and in general trying to make my online family as functional as possible. It's a lot of work for one person, and no matter how much I love my guildies I have to admit that I am tired.

The best thing that I've ever done for myself and my guild is to ask for help. I have some great players in my guild that are well respected by other members and the server community. They have expertise in areas that do I do not. Probably most importantly they are less likely to mince words than I do and are willing to do what it takes to get the job done. Having some backup has helped some become more invested in the guild and has really lightened my load.

Choosing who to ask for help can be a tough call. It does little good to select only your favorites or your friends, if they are not successful leaders. Take several factors into account when selecting a council of officers:

Continue reading We Have a Tabard: A little help from my friends

We Have a Tabard: A little help from my friends originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 19 Jun 2009 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Insider Trader: Patch 3.2 profession change analysis - Fri, 19 Jun 2009 13:00:00 EST


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

Over the past few days, some upcoming professions changes for Patch 3.2 have been announced, and although they are not as detailed as they could be, several of the changes will have quite an impact.

First and foremost, every profession-specific buff is being upgraded. This includes an Enchanter's ability to enhance their own rings, a Leatherworker's bracer enchants, and more. For a complete list of the current profession bonuses, check out Insider Trader's guide to Profession-Specific Buffs, parts one through three.

These buffs also answer some of the concerns surrounding the upcoming Jewelcrafting nerf that epic gems might be introduced without a buff to the Dragon's Eyes, which, in combination with the fact that these gems will no longer be prismatic, would effectively squash the Jewelcrafting bonus.

Jewelcrafters will also do well to note that they will be able to acquire epic gems by prospecting Titanium. Combined with a Blacksmith's two extra prismatic sockets, this powerful duo is one of the most popular profession combinations.

In addition, Engineers will be seeing some welcome changes to their profession that may make it more appealing. Unfortunately, some of the details have not been made public, so the competitiveness of their self buffs, for example, remains to be seen.

Continue reading Insider Trader: Patch 3.2 profession change analysis

Insider Trader: Patch 3.2 profession change analysis originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 19 Jun 2009 13:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WoW Moviewatch: Chronicles of Leeroy episode 6 - Stranglegank Vale - Fri, 19 Jun 2009 12:00:00 EST



The new Chronicles of Leeroy episode 6- Stranglegank Vale has been released by Herculean Productions. If you remember from the last episode, Leeroy and friends were levelling through their first instance. Now, the Horde party must handle their most difficult challenge so far: getting ganked in Stranglethorn Vale.

There have been a few production enhancements on this episode. The costumes are a little more defined, and I feel like the scenery has been stepped up a notch. Also, you get to see the Herculean team do their first interpretations of Alliance life. Even the computer graphics are a little more refined and contextual.

The movie has an interesting meta-commentary moment, when the two Alliance gaurds are standing next to each other. One actor uses a prop for the quest-giving exclamation mark hovering over his head, while the other guard's exclamation mark is a computer graphic. There's a brief moment when they kind of look at each other questioningly, and then go back to waiting for a Player Character to come get a quest. I wasn't sure what to make of the scene, but it clearly stuck out in my head.

Overall, I think the adventures of Leeroy are a lot of fun. Herculean Productions obviously puts a lot of effort and heart into these movies, and I enjoy every one I see.

Click here to check it out.

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: Chronicles of Leeroy episode 6 - Stranglegank Vale originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 19 Jun 2009 12:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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How will they do the loot in Trial of the Crusader? - Fri, 19 Jun 2009 11:00:00 EST

For my money, the most interesting things they're doing in patch 3.2 are the changes to the badge system and the reimagining of the 10- vs. 25-man raiding paradigm. The new raid, Trial of the Crusader, will be available on both normal and heroic difficulty mode for both 10- and 25-man groups (the heroic mode is called Trial of the Grand Crusader). In other words, there are a total of four versions of the raid: 10-normal, 10-heroic, 25-normal, and 25-heroic. They're all on separate lockouts

Those of you who know certain past posts of mine could probably predict what my mind jumps to from that news: how will the loot be done? I see four three major possibilities.

  1. 10-normal and 25-normal drop the same gear, while 10-heroic and 25-heroic drop a tier above (10n = 25n < 10h = 25h).
  2. 10-normal drops one kind of gear, 10-heroic and 25-normal are equal to each other and better than that, and 25-heroic is best of all (10n < 10h = 25n < 25h).
  3. All four raids drop different levels of gear, 10n < 10h < 25n < 25h.

If you've read my past stuff, you could correctly guess that #1 would be my favorite option. I don't really want to argue it here (or in the comments), because I've had that conversation more than I care to already.

Continue reading How will they do the loot in Trial of the Crusader?

How will they do the loot in Trial of the Crusader? originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 19 Jun 2009 11:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Around Azeroth: Revenge of the druids - Fri, 19 Jun 2009 10:00:00 EST

Christie of <Karma> on Alonsus-EU writes in, "You know how it is. You're happily raiding in Ulduar, you make an offbeat comment about how druid healers are all lowly scum... and then one of them hops into an Arachnopod Destroyer on the way to Mimiron and then proceeds to barbecue you alive for your impertinence. Do not anger the Trees, their vengeance is vast and terrible to behold." This particular vengeance-bringer is Restodurul, also of <Karma>.

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: Revenge of the druids originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 19 Jun 2009 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Turn off XP gain for classic raiding - Fri, 19 Jun 2009 09:00:00 EST

The ability to turn off experience gains is coming in patch 3.2, and is rightly being touted as a feature to enable twinking (to go along with the new battleground experience system).

However, that's not all that turning off XP lets you do. Remember how people have been asking for classic realms with the level cap set at 60 (or 70)? Yeah, here you go. Level a guild of characters to 60, pay 10g to turn off XP gain, and raid the old world to your heart's content.

Nethaera mentioned as much in a blue post yesterday, constituting the first supportive mention of classic only raiding that Blizzard has ever made, as Adam noticed. She does mention that this may change during testing, like everything, but for now: classic content lovers, rejoice! Don't forget to loot your core hound.


Patch 3.2 will bring about a new 5, 10, and 25 man instance to WoW, and usher in a new 40-man battleground called the Isle of Conquest. WoW.com will have you covered every step of the way, from extensive PTR coverage through the official live release. Check out WoW.com's Guide to Patch 3.2 for all the latest!

Turn off XP gain for classic raiding originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 19 Jun 2009 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Breakfast Topic: Do you go on the PTR? - Fri, 19 Jun 2009 08:00:00 EST
With the wiping of the official PTR forums, the release of the patch 3.2 PTR notes, and the slew of other new tidbits released yesterday, it's a sure sign that the start of patch 3.2 testing is imminent. I figured this would be a good time to find out whether you, our beloved readers, actually use the PTR (or Public Test Realm) or not.

Now I have to go on the PTR (it's written in tiny print on my WoW.com contract) but I also wander in there because I want to. I'm a journalist purely because I have no patience whatsoever and this is a great way of seeing how the next patch is going to look ahead of time. While I was initially not that excited about 3.2, some of the stuff revealed yesterday has gotten me quite excited.

There seem to be two camps: Team A loves getting online first, seeing all the new content as soon as possible while Team B would rather wait for everything to go live on the real realms. The rest? Well they're not quite sure what a PTR is. Which team are you?



View Poll



Patch 3.2 will bring about a new 5, 10, and 25 man instance to WoW, and usher in a new 40-man battleground called the Isle of Conquest. WoW.com will have you covered every step of the way, from extensive PTR coverage through the official live release. Check out WoW.com's Guide to Patch 3.2 for all the latest!

Breakfast Topic: Do you go on the PTR? originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 19 Jun 2009 08:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Class Q&A: Mage - Fri, 19 Jun 2009 07:00:00 EST

Second up in the class Q&A (Shamans were first) are Mages, those lovable glass cannons. Or are they? The Q&A opens with Ghostcrawler discussing public perception of the class, with a prompt of "a lot has changed since the days when the 'glass cannon' description was applied."

General

GC describes the mage as "the iconic caster:" deals magic damage from range. They should be versatile enough to do single-target damage, AoE damage, and crowd control, and every group should want one. (I'm noticing a trend here -- GC also described Shamans as a class every group should want. I guess every group should want all classes.)

They like the different feel between the three trees is in a good place, with Frostfire possibly providing a fourth aesthetic. They have decided that "king of AoE" is no longer a good niche to put any class in, so now they're trying to give both AoE and single-target to all DPS specs (with "extra effort" to make sure mages do good AoE).

Continue reading Class Q&A: Mage

Class Q&A: Mage originally appeared on WoW.com on Fri, 19 Jun 2009 07:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The Care and Feeding of Warriors: The Leveling Warrior in Wrath - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 22:00:00 EST
I promise we'll get back to our Ulduar guide for tanks and DPS warriors next week. For this week, however, since we're midway through the sixth month of 2009 and we've seen patches up to 3.1 released (and we're waiting on 3.2) I thought it would be a good idea to go back and cover some of the things a leveling warrior might want discussed. We get emails from all kinds of warriors, and so it's only fair to cover the concerns of warriors who aren't raiding Ulduar but rather just setting foot off of the dock in Howling Fjord.

Before we get started, though, the upcoming Patch 3.2 changes for Warriors in their current entirety: Armored to the Teeth: This talent now provides 1/2/3 attack power per 108 armor, up from per 180 armor. Try not to get too excited, people.

First off, I'm often asked about stats for up-and-coming warriors. We have covered some of these before back in the beta, but the beta was a year ago now and things have been changed and polished. First off, I'm going to link all the posts of interest to a leveling warrior and discuss how they may have changed, and then I'll try and cover some more general advice.

  • Building Up To It covers some target numbers and stats to focus on. I should note that this was written before the changes to Armor Penetration made it much, much better as a DPS stat for warriors: the more ArP you have, the better it is as a DPS stat until you have enough ArP to reduce target armor by 100%.
  • We covered Hit and Expertise in two posts, one for DPS warriors and one for Tanks. The tanking post is still accurate as of 3.1, but the talent changes to Arms and Fury mean that there is currently no talent that reduces chance to dodge for Fury Warriors and Arms has both Strength of Arms for passive expertise and Weapon Mastery.
  • We discussed the dangers of overstacking a stat to the exclusion of other, also necessary stats.
  • Finally, we covered gearing up in a four part post just before Wrath launched Parts one, two, three and four were all published before Wrath itself had actually come out, but they're still reasonably accurate to help your warrior get from 70 to 80, We covered weapons between 70 and 80 too.

Continue reading The Care and Feeding of Warriors: The Leveling Warrior in Wrath

The Care and Feeding of Warriors: The Leveling Warrior in Wrath originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 22:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Scattered Shots: Hunter macros even your mother could love - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 21:00:00 EST

Welcome to Scattered Shots. I am Eddie "Brigwyn" Carrington from The Hunting Lodge and I'll be your tour guide each Thursday as we explore what makes our Hunters tick and how we can make them better.

Well, maybe not your mother. But you know us Hunters, we really love our macros. Unlike some other games out there, World of Warcraft gives players a pretty simple method to help customize their playing environment. We all know about the cool add-ons like Recount and RatingBuster. Now add to that the ability to arrange the look and feel of our User Interface and Blizzard really has done something special.

Instead of trying to tackle those, I thought we could talk about the one that gives many of us players some difficulty: macros. And you know what? They really don't have to be that complicated.

Before we get started, I would be remiss if I didn't at least explain little bit about macros. At least I need to define what macros are what they are not. Macros are a way to combine several commands (attacks, emotes, or other actions) and combine them into a single button press or click.

Continue reading Scattered Shots: Hunter macros even your mother could love

Scattered Shots: Hunter macros even your mother could love originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 21:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Two Bosses Enter: Chrono-Lord Epoch vs. Volkhan - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 20:30:00 EST


Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW.com's series of fantasy deathmatches. This season's bosses hail from the five-man instances of Wrath of the Lich King.

It's the day that time stood still: Chrono-Lord Epoch (The Culling of Stratholme) versus Volkhan (the Halls of Lightning). Who'll stop who (/snicker) in this week's five-man Wrath boss deathmatch?

Here's the setup:
  • Assume that the Chrono-Lord and Volkhan share similar levels, health pools and a comparative overall damage output (including Volkhan's golems).
  • Prince Arthas Menethil is not a part of this encounter.
  • This match takes place in neutral territory (although we'll allow Volkhan an anvil to create his golems).
  • Don't get caught up in game mechanics and what actual players might do in each encounter.
  • Focus on the three S's: style, story and scale.
What do you think would happen during this battle? Post your theory on how the action will go, then cast your vote for who you think will be left standing at the end.

Continue reading Two Bosses Enter: Chrono-Lord Epoch vs. Volkhan

Two Bosses Enter: Chrono-Lord Epoch vs. Volkhan originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 20:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The OverAchiever: Guide to Midsummer Fire Festival achievements - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 20:00:00 EST


It's that time of year again, folks. Frankly, I'm glad to be back in the realm of more reasonable and just plain fun holiday achievements, because I hated School of Hard Knocks, and wound up giving up and quitting the achievement after hours of fruitless battleground deaths. Fortunately, the Fire Festival has a lot less potential to drive you to the nuthouse, and a lot more potential to grant experience, gold, and cool items. From what I've seen, Blizzard hasn't changed the holiday since its 2008 incarnation, which is actually a good thing in a number of ways because last year's revamped and expanded Fire Festival was great.

A note on eligibility: your character will need to be at least 50 to hand in the items needed for King of the Fire Festival, and at least 65 to get the higher-level quests necessary for killing Lord Ahune in Slave Pens. With that said, we still recommend that lower-level characters participate, because you'll wind up with a ton of experience and gold even if you can't complete the meta-achievement.

Should you complete the meta, you will be awarded the "Flame Keeper" title. I've listed all of the required achievements in the order I think will be easiest/fastest for the average player to do.

Continue reading The OverAchiever: Guide to Midsummer Fire Festival achievements

The OverAchiever: Guide to Midsummer Fire Festival achievements originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 20:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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PvP Q&A with Blizzard's Cory Stockton - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 19:30:00 EST


Blizzard's Lead Content Designer Cory Stockton answered quite a lot of questions about the upcoming PvP changes in Patch 3.2. There are a lot, particularly the experience gains in Battlegrounds which also has deep implications in PvE as players can simply toggle experience gains off (any Level 60s up for Molten Core?). It's a pretty lengthy interview and Stockton goes into detail with the new Isle of Conquest Battleground. Some highlights from the chat:
  • Experience gain in Battlegrounds is slightly slower than questing or grinding
  • Players can toggle experience gain on and off with a mere 10 Gold
  • There are plans to include greens and "the occasional blue item" at the end of each Battleground match (!) but won't make it to Patch 3.2
  • The Isle of Conquest is in the Frozen Sea, North of Icecrown
  • Objectives in Isle of Conquest are captured exactly like flags in Arathi Basin -- I totally called this wrong when I said it would probably be a numbers and proximity thing
  • Battlemaster Achievement isn't likely to change (whew!) but Blizzard is considering what to do with the Achievements for the Isle of Conquest
  • Rated Battlegrounds are coming. Not quite soon(R), but an announcement will be made during BlizzCon
  • Blizzard plans "to deliver more Battlegrounds to the players as often as we can"
Oh, man. That last bit made me want to change my underwear. Blizzard is actually paying attention to Battleground enthusiasts, realizing that while Arenas are nice and all, a lot of players love the BGs, too. New Battlegrounds "as often as we can?" Yes, please! Head on over to the official site to read Stockton's interview in full. Bombs, cannons, parachutes, angry Generals... 3.2 is shaping up to be one explosive patch, indeed.
Patch 3.2 will bring about a new 5, 10, and 25 man instance to WoW, and usher in a new 40-man battleground called the Isle of Conquest. WoW.com will have you covered every step of the way, from extensive PTR coverage through the official live release. Check out WoW.com's Guide to Patch 3.2 for all the latest!

PvP Q&A with Blizzard's Cory Stockton originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 19:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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What Patch 3.2 means for PvP - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 19:00:00 EST


Brilliant. Just brilliant. If you've been keeping up with the many changes in Patch 3.2, you might get an inkling that PvP is going to change drastically and for the better. Adam has already gone through the whopper announcement that Blizzard hinted at some time back: players can now gain experience from the Battlegrounds. It's something I'd wished for since the days of vanilla WoW and the developers have finally gotten around to implementing it in the next major patch.

Does this mean the death of twinks? Not necessarily. Players can opt to toggle experience gains on and off by going to Behsten in Orgrimmar or Slahtz in Stormwind (best-in-slot, get it?) and ponying up 10 Gold. But wait, there's more! Players who turn off experience gains will only be placed in the same Battleground queues as other players who opt not to gain experience. That's right -- twinks will be facing off against twinks. Twinks who have always contended that it wasn't about the unfair gear advantage will finally get the opportunity to test their mettle against equally geared opponents. Enjoy.

That's just the tip of the iceberg, though. After the jump, we'll take a look at a whole bunch of changes that will impact World of Warcraft PvP from the obvious (Arena and Battleground changes) to the not-so-obvious (item and ability changes). Let's hit it.

Continue reading What Patch 3.2 means for PvP

What Patch 3.2 means for PvP originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Maybe Ulduar drakes aren't going away in 3.2 after all - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 18:30:00 EST


We had a bit of a minor freakout when we heard that the Rusted and Ironbound protodrakes might be getting removed as rewards for the Ulduar meta achievements in Patch 3.2, and then even more of one when the slow trickle of information about 3.2 turned into a firehose. Bornakk mentioned the change initially with the caveat that it was their intention to remove the drakes eventually, but that he'd seek definite confirmation either way as to whether it was happening in 3.2 or not. There's been no update about it in the past few weeks.

Well, after a thorough reading of the 3.2 patch notes, I don't see a single trace of anything saying the drakes are getting removed. At the risk of counting my protochickens before they hatch, I think we might be safe, given how fast 3.2 looks like it's coming out.

This is at least a relief for my guild, who's doing pretty well on 10-man hard-mode progression but ... is there a word worse than "dismal"? ... on 25-man hard-modes. Maybe there's hope for us yet.

Should we get the soul-crushing confirmation that they'll be removed with 3.2, we'll be sure to let you know. There's still a lot of time for change on this one, though -- maybe it was an accidental omission, maybe it'll get decided on later -- but for now, you can breathe a little easier knowing you might be able to keep hacking away at those hard modes to get your undeniably awesome drakes even after the Argent Coliseum is commanding your guild's attention.


Patch 3.2 will bring about a new 5, 10, and 25 man instance to WoW, and usher in a new 40-man battleground called the Isle of Conquest. WoW.com will have you covered every step of the way, from extensive PTR coverage through the official live release. Check out WoW.com's Guide to Patch 3.2 for all the latest!

Maybe Ulduar drakes aren't going away in 3.2 after all originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 18:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 3.2 brings some Hunter love - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 18:00:00 EST
I discussed last week about how Hunter trapping and crowd control had gone the way of the dodo. And now as reported earlier today, we have much to celebrate with the release of the official Patch 3.2 PTR Notes. Ghostcrawler and the development team are really showing us Hunters some much needed luvin.

  • Aspect of the Cheetah: Can now be learned at level 16.
I was really wondering what we were going to do now that mounts were available at 20. It seems we are in good hands. We only have 16 painful levels of slow run until we can get Aspect of the Cheetah and start zipping around.

New graphics are always cool.

Continue reading Patch 3.2 brings some Hunter love

Patch 3.2 brings some Hunter love originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 3.2: The day we find out who stands in Yogg clouds - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 17:40:00 EST

Like me and my guild, you may have found yourself wiping on Yogg-Saron phase 1 lately because there are people who just can't seem not to stand in clouds. We've been basically begging for a Failbot for this particular phase because, let's face it, when we have no way of finding out who's clipping or standing in clouds, it's impossible to berate them for it over Vent. And the general yell of "STOP STANDING IN CLOUDS" is grating for everyone who's not doing it.

Thankfully, Blizzard has heard our pleas. In the patch notes for Patch 3.2, a small note under the Ulduar section informed us that the clouds will be "more vocal" to players who stand in them.

Then again, by the time Patch 3.2 comes out, we might not even be running Ulduar as much, and people will have learned not to step in clouds ... well, probably not the latter. But still. Thanks for this, Blizz. It'll help separate the wheat from the chaff. And guildies from the raid group.


Patch 3.2 will bring about a new 5, 10, and 25 man instance to WoW, and usher in a new 40-man battleground called the Isle of Conquest. WoW.com will have you covered every step of the way, from extensive PTR coverage through the official live release. Check out WoW.com's Guide to Patch 3.2 for all the latest!

Patch 3.2: The day we find out who stands in Yogg clouds originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 17:40:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 3.2: More profession changes - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 17:20:00 EST


We've picked up some more details about professions in Patch 3.2. Some of the changes were covered a few days ago by Eliah. The notes made today elaborate more on engineering, alchemy, fishing and cooking changes.

Alchemy

  • Stackable potions now stack to 20.
  • Five new epic gem transmute recipes are available from the Northrend trainer. The recipe for transmuting a Cardinal Ruby can be learned from a quest, given by Linzy Blackbolt in Dalaran.
  • Rage potions can now be used by druids.

I have an entire guild bank tab filled with nothing but Mana Injectors. I was both saddened and delighted when I heard that potions now stack to 20. Big plus to Potion of Speed and Potion of Wild Magic since those will be stackable now. But are they going to be completely useless? Nope! Wait until you see the Engineering changes. It means I don't have to make any more injectors! New epic gem transmutes are on the way too!

More profession changes after the jump.

Continue reading Patch 3.2: More profession changes

Patch 3.2: More profession changes originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 17:20:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 3.2: UI changes coming to the PTR - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 17:00:00 EST
Well wouldja look at that -- hidden in the just-released Patch 3.2 notes are a whole slew of UI changes to check out.

  • Auto-completion for character names in mail, chat, and pop-up interfaces can now be enabled (and disabled) from the interface options. I believe auto-complete was already in there for mail, but now it'll be everywhere, and/or you'll be able to turn it off if you've sent things to the wrong place in the past.
  • Names are getting a color option according to class, so if "Lolpaladins" is really a Death Knight, you'll know right away.
  • Casting bars near a portrait's target will show whether the spell is interruptible or not. Some boss casts are not interruptible, so now you'll know with a glance.
  • Druids will be able to see mana bars even while shape-shifted, which probably won't change gameplay much, but will be nice for bears and kitties.
  • Item comparisons (like the ability to check other gear for slots while hovering over that gear) are now available everywhere -- hover over an item with Alt pressed to see what's currently equipped in that slot on your character.
  • Macros and scripts can no longer target totems by name -- bye bye totem stompers.
  • The quest log is getting a small revamp: it'll be "double-paned for more easily viewing quest information." We're not quite sure what that means (you'll be able to look at two quests at once? It'll break out the list of accepted quests into its own full-size window?), but we'll give you a look as soon as we see it on the PTR.
  • Vendor prices will now be listed on items even if you're not at a vendor. This was a pretty common feature already, thanks to Auctioneer, but now it'll be built into the standard interface.
Keep in mind that these notes are still subject to change -- what's listed here may never make it to the live realms at all. But it seems like there are quite a few changes due in Patch 3.2 are designed to streamline the interface and incorporate a number of elements from common addons.

Patch 3.2 will bring about a new 5, 10, and 25 man instance to WoW, and usher in a new 40-man battleground called the Isle of Conquest. WoW.com will have you covered every step of the way, from extensive PTR coverage through the official live release. Check out WoW.com's Guide to Patch 3.2 for all the latest!

Patch 3.2: UI changes coming to the PTR originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 17:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 3.2 Death Knight changes - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 16:45:00 EST


Death Knights are among the most-changed classes in the first PTR version of patch 3.2, which is not terribly surprising for such a young class. Because of such significant changes, all DKs will receive a free respec.

Blood Strike will scale more from disease (up to 50% per disease), while Frost Strike is receiving significant nerfs: it can now be dodged/blocked/parried, and only gets a 55% bonus from weapon damage, instead of 60%.

On the tanking front, one of our major cooldowns was nerfed, although DKs are still probably the king of tanking CDs (disgustingly powerful new Ardent Defender aside). Icebound Fortitude's CD was doubled to 2 minutes. Veteran of the Third War's Stamina bonus was cut in half, and Toughness was cut by a third.

Continue reading Patch 3.2 Death Knight changes

Patch 3.2 Death Knight changes originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 16:45:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 3.2 bringing Strand of the Ancients coin toss - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 16:30:00 EST
We mentioned this issue a while back -- since it was introduced to the game, Strand of the Ancients has started Alliance on attack first, and that's caused problems. Due to the way the map is set up (a back-and-forth attack and defend map), the team that starts attacking has an advantage in terms of farming honor -- they only have to play until the other team loses rather than having to keep up a defense the whole time. That means shorter battlegrounds for the Alliance, which means more honor overall for them.

The problem was that Blizzard couldn't just flip a switch to randomize the battleground's spawn points: they were hard-coded into the moving ships that players appear on, so it took much more coding to use a coin-flip start. However Zarhym now confirms that the coin flip is coming to SotA. And though he didn't say when in the original post, the Patch 3.2 notes tell us that it's coming in that patch.

Hopefully Blizzard will have learned their lesson for the Isle of Conquest -- although since it's closer to Alterac Valley from what we've heard, we probably won't have that asymmetrical issue, and both sides will be able to start with just as many advantages and disadvantages as the other.


Patch 3.2 will bring about a new 5, 10, and 25 man instance to WoW, and usher in a new 40-man battleground called the Isle of Conquest. WoW.com will have you covered every step of the way, from extensive PTR coverage through the official live release. Check out WoW.com's Guide to Patch 3.2 for all the latest!

Patch 3.2 bringing Strand of the Ancients coin toss originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 16:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 3.2 changes the tiered Emblem system - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 16:15:00 EST
There are a lot of things in the patch 3.2 test realm notes that jumped out at me, but the changes to the Emblem system seem like an especially big deal. The developers made it quite clear that they wanted a tiered token system in Wrath of the Lich King, they didn't want players just farming Heroics all day and night to get the best possible gear. In patch 3.2, it looks like they're backing off on that pretty heavily, likely an attempt to reignite interest in running Heroics. If you haven't seen the patch notes, here are the points I'm referring to:

  • Any dungeons that previously dropped Emblems of Heroism or Valor, such as Naxxramas or Heroic Halls of Stone, will now drop Emblems of Conquest instead. Emblems of Conquest can still be converted to Valor or Heroism.
  • Both the 10 and 25 player instances of the Crusaders' Coliseum drop a new Emblem of Triumph.
  • The heroic dungeon daily quest will now reward 2 Emblems of Triumph and the normal daily dungeon quest will reward 1 Emblem of Triumph.
  • The existing achievements to collect 1, 25, 50, etc. Emblems of Heroism, Valor, and Conquest have been converted to Feats of Strength since Heroism and Valor Emblems are no longer attainable.

Continue reading Patch 3.2 changes the tiered Emblem system

Patch 3.2 changes the tiered Emblem system originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 16:15:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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First screenshots from Patch 3.2's Isle of Conquest released - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 16:00:00 EST


Blizzard just released some screenshots from Patch 3.2's brand new super massive Battleground, the Isle of Conquest. For those unfamiliar with the Isle, it's a large-scale 40v40 Battleground that features siege combat, good old-fashioned melee, capturable resource points, NPC bosses like Alterac Valley, steady Honor ticks from capping certain areas, and more. It's essentially the Battleground with something for everyone. We just recently posted a Q&A with World Designer Cory Stockton, with a lot of questions about the Isle answered.

And now we've got screenshots to give us a feel for the place. They show bits and pieces of the Isle, including the Alliance Keep, part of the Refinery, what appears to be the Airship Hangar, and the Lighthouse. It's all very Northrend and very exciting. After all, in the grim, dark future past World of Warcraft, there is only war. As long as you're in a Battleground, anyway. But only if you're fighting instead of fishing or killing harpies. Regardless, there's definitely war going on somewhere.

Check out the shots in the gallery below. We'll keep you posted with all the new info we get!

First screenshots from Patch 3.2's Isle of Conquest released originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 16:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 3.2: Replenishment nerfed, MP5 buffed - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 15:40:00 EST

Mana regeneration was a much-discussed area for change in patch 3.1, but when the patch went live, it turned out the changes hadn't been all that massive; most healers are still not putting a high premium on regen stats or watching their mana bars too closely, fights like Vezax excluded.

A big part of the reason why mana regen has been so extreme in Wrath is Replenishment; as of right now, any of five DPS specs (Shadow Priest, Survival Hunter, Retribution Paladin, Frost Mage, and Destruction Warlock) will provide the ten lowest people in your raid 0.25% of their maximum mana per second. Among other things, this makes Intellect a prime regen stat.

Well, Replenishment is getting a bit of a nerf in patch 3.2: instead of 0.25% max mana per second, it'll be 1% maximum mana over five seconds. That's a 20% nerf. This applies to all sources of Replenishment. At the same time, all items with MP5 on them are having the MP5 buffed by about 25%. These two changes will probably even out for the MP5-based healers (Paladin and Shaman), while making them value MP5 gear a bit more. Druids and Priests will feel a regeneration nerf, but I think they can afford it.


Patch 3.2 will bring about a new 5, 10, and 25 man instance to WoW, and usher in a new 40-man battleground called the Isle of Conquest. WoW.com will have you covered every step of the way, from extensive PTR coverage through the official live release. Check out WoW.com's Guide to Patch 3.2 for all the latest!

Patch 3.2: Replenishment nerfed, MP5 buffed originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 15:40:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 3.2 brings about Ravasaur mounts, baby dinosaurs, Northrend orphans and more - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 15:20:00 EST

Great news for collectors of pets and mounts in the Patch 3.2 notes! Not only will the long-desired Ravasaur mount finally be available -- for Horde players only, mind you -- but dinosaur fanatics will be pleased to discover that they can find Raptor Hatchlings from rare and elite raptors throughout the world. For those unwilling to farm, you can also buy Obsidian Raptor Hatchlings from Breanni in Dalaran!

But that's not all. Besides those two, Blizzard says that there are six other new unannounced non-combat pets available, not including Argent Tournament rewards.

But even that's not all! Northrend Children's Week will start with the new patch, which means that we're likely to see the Gorloc and Wolvar orphans we've known about since Wrath launched.

All that's on top of the new paladin mounts from the Argent Tournament, the Sunreaver and Silver Covenant mounts, and the new as-yet-unnamed Argent Tournament pet. Nice patch for you pet and mount collectors, eh?


Patch 3.2 will bring about a new 5, 10, and 25 man instance to WoW, and usher in a new 40-man battleground called the Isle of Conquest. WoW.com will have you covered every step of the way, from extensive PTR coverage through the official live release. Check out WoW.com's Guide to Patch 3.2 for all the latest!

Patch 3.2 brings about Ravasaur mounts, baby dinosaurs, Northrend orphans and more originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 15:20:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Changes coming for Block in Patch 3.2 - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 15:00:00 EST
Well, as we already discussed, block is currently a lackluster stat for tanking. But patch 3.2 has some changes in store, and one of those changes is to how much block value you'll see on just about everything, clearly aimed at boosting block's worth.

  • Block Value: The amount of bonus block value on all items has been doubled. This does not affect the base block value on shields or block value derived from strength.
  • On-Use Block Value Items: All items and set bonuses that trigger temporary increases to block value have been modified. Instead of increasing their block value amount by 100% like other items, they have all had their effect durations doubled. This applies to Glyph of Deflection, Gnomeregan Autoblocker, Coren's Lucky Coin, Lavanthor's Talisman, Libram of Obstruction, Tome of the Lightbringer, Libram of the Sacred Shield, the tier-8 paladin Shield of Righteousness bonus, the tier-5 paladin Holy Shield bonus, and the tier-5 warrior Shield Block bonus.
What this basically means is twofold. First, of course, you're going to be blocking for more damage. Since the amount of block value you get from your shield and from strength will not be affected, it won't be exactly double what you're blocking for now, but it will be close to that much: expect to see at least 75% more block value all told.

Secondly, however, any item you've been using to temporarily double your block value either for mitigation or for threat (I used to keep Coren's in my bags for that very reason) will not provide double the block value on the proc, but rather the same amount for twice as long. To use Coren's as an example, it will now provide 118 block value, and when used will provide 200 more block value for 40 seconds instead of 20.

If anything this will increase block's value as a threat stat (I've seen no changes to abilities like Damage Shield, Shield of Righteousness or Shield Slam) as well as giving it a bit more teeth as a mitigation tool. I don't think it's a permanent fix to block, but as a stopgap measure it should make the worth of it a bit more obvious.

Patch 3.2 will bring about a new 5, 10, and 25 man instance to WoW, and usher in a new 40-man battleground called the Isle of Conquest. WoW.com will have you covered every step of the way, from extensive PTR coverage through the official live release. Check out WoW.com's Guide to Patch 3.2 for all the latest!

Changes coming for Block in Patch 3.2 originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Battleground leveling and experience changes in Patch 3.2: Twinks v. Twinks - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 14:50:00 EST


There was a big announcement today on upcoming Battleground changes. However there are two critical pieces of PvP information that people everywhere, especially twinks, are going to go crazy over.
  • You will be able to level through PvP Battlegrounds
  • You will be able to turn off experience gains
This means that you'll be able to level your character simply by competing in PvP in battlegrounds and completing objectives, such as capturing the flag in WSG or securing resources in AB. Not from killing other players. This opens up a whole new way of playing the game at the earlier levels, one that will add a significant dynamic to it.

The second major change is the ability to turn off this experience gain in Battlegrounds and the rest of WoW (at a cost of 10g). This means that twinks are a viable and supported option in WoW, and lets those players who want to sit in the 30s bracket enjoy it to their heart's content.

Additionally, if you have turned off experience gains, you'll be placed in separate battlegrounds from those that have them turned on. That means that twinks will play against other twinks, and not against those players who are just interested in the bracket from a more casual perspective.

The floodgates of Patch 3.2 are wide open now. Enjoying it?
Patch 3.2 will bring about a new 5, 10, and 25 man instance to WoW, and usher in a new 40-man battleground called the Isle of Conquest. WoW.com will have you covered every step of the way, from extensive PTR coverage through the official live release. Check out WoW.com's Guide to Patch 3.2 for all the latest!

Battleground leveling and experience changes in Patch 3.2: Twinks v. Twinks originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 14:50:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 3.2 PTR patch notes - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 14:15:00 EST


I totally called it: the Patch 3.2 PTR notes are now available on the official forums, which means that we should expect the PTR itself to go up today. This is the patch that will bring the expansion of the Argent Tournament, with new 5/10/25-man content, and much more - see our patch 3.2 guide for an overview.

General

Construction of the Crusaders' Coliseum is complete. Testing not yet available. New raid Normal and Heroic modes for the Crusaders' Coliseum can be toggled using the Dungeon Difficulty setting. This applies to 10 and 25-player versions. 10-player (Normal), 25-player (Normal), 10-player (Heroic) and 25-player (Heroic) all share separate raid lockout timers.

Trial of the Champion

5-player (Normal and Heroic mode) dungeon. Daily quest added to the Heroic daily dungeon quest giver.

Trial of the Crusader

10 and 25-player (Normal mode) raid dungeon.

Trial of the Grand Crusader

10 and 25-player (Heroic mode) raid dungeon. Crusaders' Tribute: Active on Heroic difficulty only, the tribute system will limit players on the number of attempts the raid is allotted each week. Additional rewards can be earned depending on the number of attempts left in the tribute run each week when the final boss is defeated.

Isle of Conquest, the new 40 vs. 40-player siege-style Battleground is now available for testing.

Continue reading Patch 3.2 PTR patch notes

Patch 3.2 PTR patch notes originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 14:15:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Find in-game friends on Livejournal's WoW Friending meme - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 14:00:00 EST
The WoW Livejournal communities are really some of the best citizens in the WoW community at large -- they always have interesting discussions and insights going on over there, and if you ever need a question answered or just want an opinion on something in-game, they're always ready with some insight. That's why I think this WoW Friending meme that spirdirslayer has going on is such a good idea -- basically, if you're over on Livejournal and are looking to meet a few players on your realm, you can head over to the page, find your server, and then enter your information along with a few survey questions and check out who else is playing with you in-game.

I almost wish Blizzard did more social networking stuff like this -- through the Armory, we can find out everything we need to know about each others' characters these days, but there's not much we can learn about the people behind those characters. Our own profiles here on WoW.com help with some of that as well, but it would be nice to have it all integrated in the game somehow: examine a character and find out that their player is living in the same town you are. Completely optional, of course -- not everyone wants to socialize to that extent. But for those interested, it seems like it would be a lot of fun.

Find in-game friends on Livejournal's WoW Friending meme originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 3.2 upcoming Paladin changes - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 13:32:00 EST


Blizzard has just released a set of major upcoming changes to the Paladin class, due to come about with Patch 3.2. There are some major changes that are going to not sit too well with folks, while making others quite happy. But with that said, it should be noted that all these changes might not make it through.

A few of the key intended changes include:
For additional information on the upcoming patch, check out WoW.com's Guide to Patch 3.2. The complete announcement after the break.

This post is being edited live. Please bear with us.

Continue reading Patch 3.2 upcoming Paladin changes

Patch 3.2 upcoming Paladin changes originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 13:32:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Raid Rx: How to read healing parses (or meters) - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 13:00:00 EST




Every week, Raid Rx will help you quarterback your healers to victory! Your host is Matt Low, the grand poobah of World of Matticus and a founder of No Stock UI, a new WoW blog for all things UI, macro, and addon related. Need help reading healing meters and parses? Don't know where to begin? Let's see what I can do!

"Are healing meters supposed to measure your ability or their inability (to stand in fires)?"

That's a great quote I saw on the Plus Heal forums. I wish I bookmarked the thread. I can't remember who said it.

Reading meters is not for the faint hearted. There is often an overwhelming amount of information that needs to be dissected. Unlike damage meters, healing meters are extremely subjective to various fights.

Continue reading Raid Rx: How to read healing parses (or meters)

Raid Rx: How to read healing parses (or meters) originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 13:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WoW Moviewatch: Castlevania: Wisps of Dracula - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 12:00:00 EST


Your appreciation for Castlevania: Wisps of Dracula by Noblejazan will vary depending on your knowledge and experience with poorly written fan-fiction. The author took an "original story" written by a fan of the game Castlevania, and put it into machinima. Mind you, Noblejazan used an actual fanfiction. The resulting video is somewhere between a hyperspeed parody and a weeping nod to the phenomenon of fanfic.

This video has all the very best tropes. It has senseless tragedy, dashing heroics, an invulnerable, rogue hero, and a hint that the real Mary Sue has yet to be born. (I'm sure Rhonin is just around the corner for the next installment.) The author is careful to pronounce the actual language from his chosen fanfiction, and the movie moves so fast it feels like you're on a sugar-fueled rollercoaster ride. I especially like the word-art flying across the screen, to help make sure you don't miss any details.

Although I was a little confused when I first pulled this video up on WarcraftMovies, I laughed out loud when I played the YouTube stream. This video is hilarious work, though I'll admit I'm not sure of the gimmick could be repeated. It's definitely worth the few minutes watching.

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: Castlevania: Wisps of Dracula originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 12:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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One Boss Leaves: General Bjarngrim commands the field - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 11:00:00 EST


Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW.com's series of fantasy death matches. This season's bosses come from the five-man instances of Wrath of the Lich King.

Well folks, we've had some tight battles lately -- and this wasn't one of them. In a rather predictable display of superiority, the Hall of Lightning's General Bjarngrim outclassed Sjonnir the Ironshaper from the Halls of Stone in this week's Two Bosses Enter, One Boss Leaves.

Loyal Two Bosses fan Siaperas is always good for a fair recounting of the battle."If I knew nothing else about them, I would wage my bet on General Bjarngrim based on how Loken assigned these men," he wrote. "Loken would want somebody who could handle himself but have good managerial skills to oversee an operation like the Forge of Wills. However, he would want to protect himself with some of his most dangerous servants. I'm not saying that Bjarngrim is just muscle and Sjonnir is all brain -- they're both very intelligent and powerful opponents -- but in Loken's eyes, I suspect he sees Bjarngrim as the more dangerous opponent in a fight. And I would agree.

"I do not think this would be so one-sided as Bjarngrim winning without Sjonnir getting his licks in. The adds would bring some nice flavor, but between Whirlwind and Chain Lightning, they're not going to be much help. What's going to win the day for Bjarngrim is his ability to think on his feet, to put the most hurt on his opponents. Sjonnir puts too much reliance on his minions. He'll be able to kite Bjarngrim around a little and buy himself time, but still he won't do too much between Bjanrgrim's Spell Reflect, Intercept and Pummel. In the end, Sjonnir just can't deliver the same amount of hurt to Bjarngrim as he will be receiving, and Bjarngrim wins."

Continue reading One Boss Leaves: General Bjarngrim commands the field

One Boss Leaves: General Bjarngrim commands the field originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 11:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Around Azeroth: Season of the witch - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 10:00:00 EST

Did you really believe that the Ember Clutch was created by a bunch of fire-breathing proto-dragons? Pshaw. That's just what they want you to think. In reality, Akrasia of Steamwheedle Cartel-EU got a little too careless with her Arcane Missiles, and what was once a thriving forest is now a bunch of very large matchsticks. Remember, kids, as the Rabid Brown Bear says, only you can prevent forest fires. At least that's what I think he says. It's hard to understand him through all the foaming at the mouth and chewing on my leg.

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Around Azeroth: Season of the witch originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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EQ dev: WoW wouldn't exist without EQ - Thu, 18 Jun 2009 09:00:00 EST

Videogamer.com has an interview up with Ryan Barker, the lead designer for seminal MMORPG EverQuest. When asked if he thought WoW would exist without EQ having been around, he replied that he didn't think so, and that Blizzard designers would likely agree with that statement.

I think he's right, too. The success of EQ allowed for countless imitators and innovators to follow in its footsteps, and WoW is certainly both of those things. What made WoW successful in the first place, beyond brand recognition, was the fact that the developers -- whose team consisted of a number of former EQ devs and prominent community members! -- refined and added on so many features cribbed from EQ. They made the formerly hardcore-only genre accessible to a wide variety of players and age groups, and in doing so broke subscriber and sales records -- thus continuing to make new MMOs financially plausible. And with WoW's improvements to the diku formula, the genre is now filled with WoW imitators as well. History repeats itself.

Sure, it's entirely possible that WoW could have existed without the advent of EQ, but it would have been a very different game if it existed at all. And I doubt it would have been anywhere near as good without having been able to learn from EQ's myriad mistakes or study its successes. We owe a lot to Old Man EQ. Now get off his lawn.

EQ dev: WoW wouldn't exist without EQ originally appeared on WoW.com on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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