Allegedly, this is the music that you'll hear at the Wrath of the Lich King log-in screen. I love it! It achieves just the right blend between savage and graceful, haunting and heroic, and of course it contains the main WoW motif that we all have come to know and hum at inappropriate times (or is that just me?). I've seen this file in a couple places now, and if it is fake, it's extremely well-done. Kudos to Blizzard, assuming it's not fake; this is another piece in a long line of great atmospheric music.
Blizz updates Death Knight site - Tue, 20 May 2008 18:30:00 EST They may be slower than all the fan sites to release info, but when they do put up pages, my do they make them pretty. Blizzard has updated their official Wrath of the Lich King page with some more information on the Death Knight class, including discussion of their class role and some sketches of their capabilities. This is nothing we haven't already seen, from that time a week or so ago when every site except us got invited to Blizzard HQ a few weeks back, but if you missed that, here's the highlights:
All you need to be able to create a DK is to have a character of level 55. This allows you to create one DK per realm, on any realm(s) you choose. If you're on a PvP realm, the DK must be the same faction that you're already playing.
DKs start at level 55, and can be made in any race you want (subject to PvP realm faction restrictions).
The DK can tank for 5-mans and raids; Blizz claims that "his or her damage output while tanking will be respectable."
DKs can also spec for DPS, using both melee and magic.
Final Sunwell gates open today in the US - Tue, 20 May 2008 18:00:00 EST I'm surprised it took this long for a tip to come in to us about this: the final gate in Sunwell Plateau is open today on the North American realms. This means all the raiding guilds who can down M'uru now have a chance to test their skills against Kil'jaeden, boss of the Burning Legion and, more than likely, the final baddie of TheBurning Crusade. How long until we see the world-first Kil'jaeden kill? The gates should probably open for the European realms tomorrow, which is their maintenance day.
Not much is known for sure about the fight, since nobody's actually done it yet -- the PTR testers of patch 2.4 didn't manage to down M'uru, and if they had the gates probably wouldn't have been open -- but we do have some pretty solid speculation on what raiders might be rewarded with when they eventually do manage to drop the guy. And yes, I am very happy that I get to use that image of KJ in a top hat again.
WoW Insider Weekly - Tue, 20 May 2008 17:00:00 EST Every week here at WoW Insider, our columnists cover all aspects of the World of Warcraft, from professions to Paladins, and everywhere in between. Here's ten of the most popular weekly columns from the past seven days. If you missed them the first time, don't miss them again.
Ready Check is a weekly column focusing on successful raiding for the serious raider. Hardcore or casual, ZA or Sunwell Plateau, everyone can get in on the action and get mad purpz. Today, we encounter Mary-Kate and Ashley.
The fourth encounter in the Sunwell, the Eredar Twins is a really interesting fight -- a ballet of managing debuffs, of exact positioning, of not blowing up the raid. The Twins themselves are Lady Sacrolash and Grand Warlock Alythess, one 'shadow twin' who deals melee damage and one 'fire twin' who casts fire spells at the tank. Unlike some previous 'twin' encounters, their health is not linked; when one dies, the surviving twin gains some of her abilities, so you can choose which to kill first.
The encounter itself is very flexible and dozens of guilds have come up with different strategies, so we're not going to dictate the "must-follow" hard and fast rules here. Instead, let's take a look at the bosses and their abilities and provide you with the tools to come up with your own plan of attack, along with some tips and tricks.
15 Minutes of Fame is our look at World of Warcraft players of all shapes and sizes - from the renowned to the relatively anonymous, the remarkable to the player next door. Tip us off to players you'd like to hear more about at 15minutesoffame (at) wowinsider (dot) com.
For all the WoW players who sink into Azeroth to escape the travails of the world outside are others who seem set ablaze by the ideas, energy and connections sparked during their gaming. Among the inspired: Aislinana of Cenarion Circle, whose casual interest in assembling a sweet character portrait of a guildmate has morphed into a growing passion, with a growing fan base clamoring for their own portraits.
15 Minutes of Fame: Tell us how you got started doing character portraits - because you're not actually a professional artist or long-time hobbyist, are you? Aislinana: Well, we were hanging around in Black Temple after a raid finished up, so I snapped a screen cap of my friend's priest, Kallindril, and said I'd spruce it up in Photoshop. Little did I know that it was going to turn into an obsession for me. I mean, I've always loved taking screenshots. I take them all the time to capture something awesome looking, much like I do with my own digital camera. So I've had an eye for this stuff. I just started to retouch/edit and then eventually started painting in effects in Photoshop.
Psst...want some WotLK alpha talent info? - Tue, 20 May 2008 15:30:00 EST As you may have noticed, Blizzard sent us a request that we remove unreleased information relating to spells and talents in Wrath of the Lich King, and we have chosen to comply with that request. However, obviously that cat is out of the bag (and was before we got there), and if you want to find that information, one good place to look for it is the Wotlk leaks wiki.
From flight paths to pictures to spells and talents (including those for Death Knights) to profession information, that wiki is a great resource for unreleased information. Obviously this is stll alpha information, and everything is unfinished and changeable -- if any of you were playing WoW in alpha or beta, you know how much things changed before release (and after). Still, it's nice to get a glimpse of what's in store.
There are a lot of reputations to grind in World of Warcraft. In fact, one of the ways the game has become more accessible to players with time constraints is by the introduction of daily quests as means to gain reputation, and eventually gear and other rewards (flying mounts, various recipes, other items) from faction vendors.
As an example, last night I finally reached exalted with Shattered Sun Offensive on my third character to do so, my tauren warrior. I saw the green flash of light as I turned in Blood for Blood, headed back to the Isle of Quel'Danas and stocked up on the various exalted goodies I'd been slavering for, the tanking and melee DPS necks, the shield, and the Alchemist Stone patterns in both tank and DPS flavors. And then, as has been the case for my previous two characters to hit exalted (my human warrior and draenei shaman) I got the heck off of that island with my shiny new tabard and ran around in battlegrounds shuddering with relief.
All these factions are very useful for gearing up my growing army of alts, and I am aware that it helps cut down the time I would otherwise have to spend hoping for a random drop from an instance. So why the feeling of glorious freedom and the heated flight to the hills the second I hit exalted?
A lot of things are the same between the two games -- talents are very similar, and there are a lot of comparable mechanics and spells (DoTs, healing, and aggro, of course, all play a role in AoC as well as in Azeroth). But there are a lot of differences, too: Age of Conan's combat is based on real-time, which means you actually press a button to strike, rather than just setting a target and going to town. Instances play a different role, too -- you start out in a private instance, and can level in a world by yourself for a much longer time than in World of Warcraft. And Funcom has put in quite a few things designed to pull us away from WoW also: mounted combat, a deeper guild system, player cities, and some more PvP mini games.
Of course, even if you do go to play some AoC, Wrath of the Lich King will probably bring you back to WoW anyway -- as fun as killing stuff in the Hyborian Age is, it doesn't hold a candle to meeting Arthas Menethil, in our humble opinion. But if you've heard about Age of Conan and are wondering what the difference is, Massively's guide has you covered.
Warrior Talents in Wrath of the Lich King - Tue, 20 May 2008 13:30:00 EST Warriors can rejoice today, basking in their newly leaked talents from Wrath of the Lich King. This information has been first obtained through a [redacted] but has since been independently confirmed by WoW Insider staff. Note that the information you're seeing here is correct, while the wiki page you're seeing now could be updated with false information. However, that's where our confirmation of the data comes into play.
Read on after the break for the full list we have so far. This is a spoiler, so don't look unless you want to!
Update: At Blizzard's request, we have removed the information from our site. Update: Please don't post notes or references to notes in the comments. We're just going to remove them. Thanks.
Death Knight talents revealed - Tue, 20 May 2008 13:00:00 EST DeathKnight.info has posted, and our independent sources confirm, a first look at the current state of the Death Knight talents. These come covered in caveats, most especially that they're from the Friends & Family Alpha and will almost certainly change in the coming months, and that this is only the two deepest tiers of talents. However, if you're as desperate for this sort of information as I am, you won't mind. Let's get right into it.
For some of you, this may be considered spoilers, so in case you don't want to see the talents, I've placed them after the jump. If you do want to see, click on!
Update: Blizzard has asked us to remove the information.
Today's Moviewatch is a mystery that we're looking to solve. Pinkhair, a well-known 3D WoWmachinimator that often helps others with their projects, has released a teaser for his upcoming movie, Succession. The film is due in Summer 2008, but the problem is that we have no clue what it's about!
Pinkhair's work on this teaser was so good that many WCM commenters accused him of stealing scenes from a Blizzard cinematic trailer. However, he released a picture of his Arthas model to reassure them that the talent was all his. We'll just have to wait and see if the movie is worth it, as the clip is way too short to tell us anything.
I thought it was a fun show, even if Turpster did point out the dark side of every exciting new feature we talked about.
At the end of the show, Turpster sent out a call for suggestions on how he should celebrate his Shadow Priests' expected dinging of 70, so send in your thoughts and suggestions on that or anything else on your mind by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org. And don't forget that while you can listen to the show either in WoW Radio's archives or on iTunes, you can also hear us live every Saturday afternoon at 3:30pm EST/8:30pm GMT.
Oh, crap, I froze the world again. I knew the freezer settings were too high for those chicken leftovers. I suspect that these arakkoa really aren't happy with me destroying all their homes. And I don't even want to know what that giant tree is planning to do with its branches now. If I can't come up with a lake full of rum, an orchard of strawberries, and an extremely large blender within five minutes, this night is going to end very badly indeed.
(Credit to Keloki of <Schwadenfreude> on Ravenholdt, who's hopefully warmed up by now, and his pal Spazz.)
Thanks for all your kind words yesterday, and for those of you who requested it -- courtesy of my mom -- we present the Popener!
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, remember that if you're going to write a paragraph or more telling me the story behind your screenshot and its awesomeness, remember to attach the screenshot.
Prior to Patch 2.4, when the limit was ten, I don't think that I ever completed more than four or five dailies per day.Now that we've been bombarded with Quel'Danas dailies and the limit is twenty-five, I do up to eight on rare occasions.I almost always complete the daily battleground quest, but that's about it most days.I know that they're an excellent source of gold, but they feel like such a chore to me. I find daily questing to be almost as much fun as washing dishes and doing laundry. If it means I never get epic flying mounts on my characters, so be it.
How many dailies do you do and what keeps you motivated to do them?
It's a relatively painless Tuesday Morning this time around for those who play in what are the early morning hours at Blizzard HQ. This time, most US servers will just recieve a quick rolling restart at 5 AM PDT, about half an hour from now, which should result in no more than 15 minutes of downtime. However, there are some servers that will get 2 hours of downtime: Agamaggan, Azshara, Baelgun, Dark Iron, Detheroc, Emerald Dream, Greymane, Kalecgos, Lightninghoof, Maelstrom, Malfurion, Moonrunner, Nazjatar, Sargeras, Staghelm, Twisting Nether, Ursin, and Wildhammer.
Also, here's something that should please a lot of Australian players: Their realms won't get the rolling restarts until 5AM AEST -- which translates to noon PDT. That should translate to lots of time for night owls to finish their raids before the restarts kick them off.
So in that 15 minutes to 2 hours of down time you'll have to go through, or if you're stuck at school or work, here's a few WoW Insider articles from the last week that are worth checking out. First, last week's major news and views:
I've heard some amazing stories about what people have done(or not done) in favor of World of Warcraft.I have to say Lils of EU: Windhammer's story takes the cake.The tale, told by her boyfriend Artimis, describes how she went into labor while playing Warsong Gulch and continued to play until the battle was complete.12 hours later the couple became proud parents of Hayden.We've heard about weddings,proposals, deaths, and divorces, but a WoW birth is pretty darned epic.
The forum thread had many supporters and detractors for this behavior.I have to agree with Mankirk of Daggerspine "Putting WSG before child birth is pro..."While many believe that the first stop should be the hospital, in this case the new mom was advised to stay calm at home as labor progressed. Nightkestrel of Vashj staunchly defended the couple's labor management decision.Childbirth is an intensely personal thing, and this story has a very happy ending.
Congrats Lils and Artimis, and welcome to the world Hayden! Be sure to check out WoW Rookie every Monday.
If you're planning to make a Death Knight on your favorite server, and you're an altoholic (I myself am guilty on both counts), you've probably already thought about your delimma, and Bornakk drove home the point today: There are still no plans to make extra character slot for WoTLK. Just like the problem you may have had deciding what characters to delete to make your Draenei or Blood Elf, you'll have to make the same decision again.
I suppose it's understandable. I'm sure it would be a rather large jump in server storage space needed to give everyone a massive amount of extra characters. Still, It's going to be tough for a lot of people to delete or transfer a character so they can play their new Death Knight with their friends, I imagine.
Bornakk does point out that at least, with the level 55 creation level, you can start the Death Knight on a seperate server and get a feel for it before deciding if you want to delete or transfer a character on your main server. Still, I know that half the fun for me is getting a good name reserved for my character, so I've personally already deleted a lowbie DraeneiPaladin from my main server in order to create a placeholder character with my chosen name.
WoW Rookie is brought to our readers to help our newest players get acclimated to the game. Make sure you send a note to WoW Insider if you have suggestions for what new players need to know
In the World of Warcraft, 40 is a magic number.Once you hit this level you get access to a 31 point talent, which usually does some pretty nifty things for your class.You really start specializing into your role as a healer, tank or DPS character.The best part about 40 is getting your fancy new mount.Once you get used to traveling the world on you pony (wolf, nightsaber, raptor, ram, etc) it can be really hard to go back to hoofing it on foot.