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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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Forum Post of the Day: What type of music do Azerothians make? - Sun, 23 Mar 2008 20:00:00 EST
Acerba of Cenarion Circle started a pretty fun discussion the other day on her server boards: What type of music would typify various races and cultures of Azeroth? Sure, we all have our soundtracks for when we get tired of the in-game music, and the in-game music itself often has various themes that show again and again music to represent various concepts, but thinking about what music your character would listen to or what sounds you might here around a bonfire at Razor Hill (Well, besides L70ETC) or in a fine mansion in Silvermoon City is a really fun exercise. I'm one who often creates soundtracks for my PnP and MMORPG characters alike in order to understand this, so I find it a useful exercise for us roleplayers, as well.

Continue reading Forum Post of the Day: What type of music do Azerothians make?

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All the World's a Stage: Finding the right realm - Sun, 23 Mar 2008 18:56:00 EST


One of the most common difficulties many roleplayers face is that of finding other people to roleplay with. To help overcome this challenge, All the World's a Stage presents a guide to finding roleplayers in three parts: "finding the right realm" for roleplaying, "joining the right circle" of roleplaying friends, and "wearing the right mask" to attract other roleplayers to you.

Due to reasons we have discussed earlier, RP servers can vary widely from a very few who maintain their immersive roleplaying atmosphere, to the majority which often seem little different from a normal PvE or PvP server. Although Blizzard takes their RP server guidelines "seriously," they cannot enforce these rules wholesale, and rely on the players themselves to do much of their own policing and reporting where necessary. RP servers thus vary a great deal in terms of how many people there actually make roleplaying a priority, how many will report someone breaking the RP rules, and how many will strive to maintain that precious gem of mass cooperation: the roleplaying atmosphere.

It may not be obvious to a new player, but there are tools roleplayers can use to find the realm that suits them best. There may be no standardized way to group up for RP, but the fact holds true: "seek, and ye shall find."

Continue reading All the World's a Stage: Finding the right realm

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Defense cap defined - Sun, 23 Mar 2008 18:00:00 EST
Many WoW players (and several of our readers) often comment that there is no such thing as a defense cap. This is true in the strict sense that there is no upper limit on how much defense you can have, nor any statistical diminishing returns. However, that's not to say that there's not a point where the utility provided by more defense starts to fall off - so there is a point where the utility given by more defense actually provides a practical diminishing return, and that point is referred to as the defense cap.

What is the magic number? 490 defense for Warriors and Paladins, and 415 defense for Feral Druids. To come about this number, you need to do a little math. First, it's important to note that a raid "boss" mob is considered three levels above the player. This means that the math is based off the boss mob being a level 73 mob, and the player being level 70. A player's base defense is defined by the formula Base Defense = level * 5. A player that is level 70 would thus have a base defense of 350 (70 * 5 = 350).

Continue reading Defense cap defined

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In Russia, World of Warcraft page visits you! - Sun, 23 Mar 2008 17:00:00 EST


Blizzard has released the Russian World of Warcraft webpage over at their European site. I can't read a darn thing on it, so I'm forced to rely on other's translations of it, and some good old Google Translator action on the press release.

A couple interesting things. First, they'll be releasing the fully localized version of Russian WoW in a few months. The second interesting thing is that they're actually looking for some people fluent in Russian to work for them, and this is a good thing since the Russian version of the site isn't nearly as complete as other language's versions of the site. Finally, ignore the translator error given by Google: "Our list of frequently asked questions concerning the withdrawal of Russian version of World of Warcraft." There is no withdrawal, there will be a Russian WoW.

The Russian version of WoW was announced back on December 10th, 2007. It's good to see that Blizzard is continuing the localization of the game. Many international users are forced to either play on the plethora of European servers or come play on the United States servers. This can be a difficult thing, in that the distance between the realm server and the player's computer is so great that very large and unruly ping times often result. This is not a good thing if you're trying to have any sort of skillful game playing.

All and all a nice little present for our Russian friends.

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Macro Anatomy: Run phase and beyond! - Sun, 23 Mar 2008 16:00:00 EST
Welcome, troops, to the final stage of your lock-step macro training. This phase is when you will learn all about modifier keys. I had planned to include conditionals in the Run Phase, but that subject will necessitate its own series of posts, so look for that in the future. From here on out, Macro Anatomy will focus more on macro development and specific macros rather than teaching you the basics. In case you missed out on the basics, go check out my Macro Primer, then you can graduate to the Crawl and Walk phases of macro development.

As I said, we'll be taking a look at modifier key, which can extend the functionality of your macros, as well as helping to cut back on how many buttons you are using on your action bar.

Modifier keys allow you to change the behavior of a macro when pressing one of three keys. The keys available for use as modifier keys are:

  • Shift (shift)
  • Control (ctrl)
  • Alt (alt)
Keep reading to find out how to use these three modifier keys.

Continue reading Macro Anatomy: Run phase and beyond!

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Noblegarden in Pictures - Sun, 23 Mar 2008 15:30:00 EST


After having the chance to actually get out there and start my Egg Hunting, I can confirm that no, there really isn't anything new for the Noblegarden event this year. That's alright though, it entertained me for awhile, and I know for a fact that the Midsummer Fire Festival has a lot more in store.

On the bright side, I did get my Elegant Dress this year! An entire day dedicated to finding this dress last year got me nothing but cruddy candy. Within twenty minutes this year, I got my dress! Of course, it doesn't look very good so I'll probably never put it on my character again, but I have it. That's good enough for me.

If you're not able to participate in the event, or you're reading this after it has ended, do not fear! You didn't miss out on any leet items, and I did my best to capture the fun of the event in the gallery below. Go on, take a look! You know you want to.

Gallery: Noblegarden

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Two Bosses Enter: Sapphiron vs Kel'thuzad - Sun, 23 Mar 2008 15:00:00 EST


Two bosses enter... but only one will get to leave in WoW Insider's series of fantasy deathmatches. We've scoured the instances of Azeroth and Outland looking for the most interesting bosses Blizzard has to offer us and picked out a group of 32 to pit against one another until we come out with a single winner in the end. And the best part -- you get to tell us who wins.

We're down to the Final Four. First up, two bosses of Naxxramas face off. Will the undead frost wyrm Sapphiron be able to take down his partner in crime, The Archlich of the Plaguelands Kel'Thuzad? Want to learn more about these two bosses and voice your opinion on who would win in a fight? Keep reading

Continue reading Two Bosses Enter: Sapphiron vs Kel'thuzad

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Player versus NPC health - Sun, 23 Mar 2008 14:00:00 EST


A comment left by Argent on my article about the maximum amount of stamina got me thinking. How does player health stack and scale against NPC health? I quoted 17,500 unbuffed health as a good target for maxed unbuffed stamina, which equates to about 22,000 health fully raid buffed (possibly more depending on group, consumables, and talent composition).

So, let's take a look at what some mobs are that have around 22,000 to 23,000 health. Remember, this is as much as a fully equipped tier six warrior will probably have in raid.
If you want to just go by unbuffed numbers, some famous mobs that have around 17,500 health include:

Continue reading Player versus NPC health

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Angelista? Who the heck is that? - Sun, 23 Mar 2008 13:00:00 EST

I've been looking through patch 2.4's loot tables fairly frequently, and just the other night one piece in particular really jumped out at me. Angelista's Revenge. Yes, good ol' Angelista is back yet again.

There's no lore or backstory for Angelista, she's not really a lore figure at all. Like Foror and Styleen, Angelista is a just a little plug for a Blizzard employee, or friend/family member of a Blizzard employee. We don't know exactly who she is, but it's fun to see all of the signs pointing to her that crop up. Ahn'Qiraj, Stratholme(see above), Blackwing Lair, and now the Sunwell.

Even though I know there's no real lore for Angelista, I have a mind obsessed with story telling, so I started to wonder what she would be like if she was a Warcraft figure. Her name sounds like a Priest, but her equipment definitely isn't priest-like. There's cloth belts in BWL and Mount Hyjal, a melee DPS ring in 2.4, a tanking ring and healing neck in Ahn'Qiraj... the only classes Angelista could possibly be are a very, very confused Shaman, Paladin or Druid.

Continue reading Angelista? Who the heck is that?

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WoW Moviewatch: Crossing Over - Sun, 23 Mar 2008 12:00:00 EST

Sometimes you stumble across a nondescript machinima that ends up being really well done. The creator will be a first-timer, but will have picked up on the techniques used by those thoroughly skilled. They might even have video editing skills as part of their real job.

I recently came across one such film, Crossing Over. However, those looking for fancy special effects will possibly be disappointed. lagspikefilm spins the tale of an adventurer that finds himself in some unusual places.

Will the adventurer ever find his way home? What happened to the problem in the cave at the beginning?

[Via Warcraftmovies.com]

Previously on Moviewatch ...

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WoW Interface's Patch 2.4 Survival Guide - Sun, 23 Mar 2008 11:00:00 EST

I've talked about the anticipation of 2.4 going live and the pending consequences to your addons package before. Now the folks over at WoWInterface.com have developed an addon survival guide that may help ease the transition to Patch 2.4. With their migration to a more powerful server system and the option to go into ultra-low bandwidth mode, WoW Interface is looking to face the 2.4 addon battle head-on.

Their new Patch 2.4 Survival Guide is a concept that many of you many find useful on patch day, in fact you may find that it changes the way you find and update addons. Although many players (including myself) have made the transition to auto-updaters, this page serves some very unique needs.

First of all, this page currently shows the top 70 mods, across the listed sites, and puts them all on one page. Each addon has a short description of its function, something that would be very useful for new players looking to get some tried-and-true addons. You may be wondering what the big deal is, and rightfully so. Read on, my friends, the best (in my opinion) feature is yet to be revealed.

Continue reading WoW Interface's Patch 2.4 Survival Guide

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Around Azeroth: Shock and awesome - Sun, 23 Mar 2008 10:00:00 EST

Ever wonder what became of the old level 60 raid bosses? Does Nef sit and play poker with Rend Blackhand? Who will C'thun laser beam now? Ferana of Draenor-EU revisits the good old days before arenas, adamantite and Monstrous Kaliris with a 2006 picture of Hakkar the Soulflayer eating a Chain Lightning bolt.

Do you have any unusual World of Warcraft images that are just collecting dust in your screenshots folder? Because 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. And please, no more sunsets. We're secretly vampires and they burn us!

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25 Easter eggs of the Burning Crusade - Sun, 23 Mar 2008 09:00:00 EST


We at WoW Insider felt that, in honor of Easter/Noblegarden, we'd go looking for some of the best Easter eggs in Burning Crusade. This is by no means an exhaustive gallery of all the little nods you can find in BC; it's really almost impossible to go anywhere without running into a programmer's sly joke. I had to limit my gallery to things that could be seen by toons who'd outleveled some of the really good quest-related ones ("How To Serve Goblins" was great) or who had ready access to the Blood Elf/Draenei starter areas.

Enjoy your trawl through a feast of cleverly-placed pop-culture references, and you can visit BlizzPlanet for an exhaustive list of Burning Crusade Easter eggs if these whet your appetite for more! Don't forget that with our new gallery functions, you can hit the "Hi Res" button at the top right of the page if you want to see a photo in more detail.

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Breakfast Topic: Spell pushback - Sun, 23 Mar 2008 08:00:00 EST

Spellpower of Malfurion posted on the Priest forums that spell pushback is an indication that Blizzard prefers melee classes over spell casters. In his thread, the original poster used the example of a sixteen-second actual cast time for a second and a half spell due to spell pushback. This greatly reduced the effect of casters against melee classes. Songbreeze of Dragonmaw echoed this sentiment with the response, "Welcome to World of Meleecraft."

Other posters disagreed. Some stated that many PvE encounters favor casters. Nemarra of Tichondrius pointed out that melee characters have an equal disadvantage at range. Casters also have access to instant spells and abilities such as Blink, Frost Nova and Curse of Exhaustion to help them get out of melee range. Others have access to Power Word Shield and Earth Shield that mitigate the effects of pushback. If you're concerned about spell pushback, you should pay particular attention to how your spec can mitigate it.

Continue reading Breakfast Topic: Spell pushback

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Happy Noblegarden! - Sun, 23 Mar 2008 07:00:00 EST
"The great feast of Noblegarden has long been celebrated by the races of the Alliance and recently adopted by those of the Horde. On this joyous day, it is customary for the nobles and lords from each race to hide coins, candy, and the occasional treasures within special eggs painted to look like wildflowers. These eggs are then scattered around the major cities for the citizenry to find. From heroes to commoners, and everyone in between - the feast of Noblegarden is meant to bring communities together to share the joy of life and friendship."


Good morning readers and Happy Noblegarden! If you didn't know yet, today is a pretty neat(if mundane) holiday in the World of Warcraft, which coincides with the real life holiday of Easter. And just like Easter, you're in for a lot of eggs. Most of the actual rewards are just toss away items like candy, but you can also get your hands on neat fashion items like an Elegant Dress or a Tuxedo.

This'll be my third year plucking eggs now, and I haven't gotten a dress for my priest yet. Wish me luck, and I hope your luck is better than mine has been!

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Le map du Blizzard - Sun, 23 Mar 2008 01:35:00 EST


Blizzard has released an interactive map of Paris, done in the style of World of Warcraft. Paris is the location for the World Wide Invitational 2008, and the map is a real gem. If you click on any of the locations, a tooltip will popup with two facts about it. One fact is real, and one is an in-joke tied to the World of Warcraft.

When I found this, myself and several other writers were laughing out loud at them. While it's not as good as a Wrath of the Lich King map (to quote fellow writer Alex Ziebart, "Holy cow, is that a map for Wrath?" *looks closer* "Oh... it's just Paris. Lame."), it's still pretty darn funny and cool.

For instance, when you click on the La Defense up in the left hand corner of the map, the quip at the bottom reads "If you put Tempest Keep in the middle of Stormwind it might look something like this - but with less dragonhawks." Just hilarious, especially if you've ever had to deal with the annoying dragonhawks in Tempest Keep: The Eye.

Continue reading Le map du Blizzard

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Forum post of the day: Flying mounts in the old world - Sat, 22 Mar 2008 20:00:00 EST


I was thrilled when Blizzard announce that the Burning Crusade would usher in flying mounts. Then we found out that we would only be able to use flying mounts in Outland, since Blizzard had not rendered some areas of the game. Lalia of Icecrown suggested that flying mounts should be allowed in the old world, just with a lowered ceiling.

The biggest objection to this idea was the possibility of sky-ganking. Ganking however is a fact of life on a PvP server. I try to avoid going to Azeroth whenever possible, partly because it takes so long to get from place to place. Sure it would take a great deal of coding, but I would love to see this explored further.

If nowhere else, flying should be an option in Moonglade. That way Druids could try out their fantastic flying skills as soon as they get them.

Do you think we should be able to fly in Azeroth?

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Maximum stamina - Sat, 22 Mar 2008 19:00:00 EST
If you want to live through any boss fight as a tank, the one thing that you need above all else is health. Stamina, which gives ten health for every one point of stamina, is by far the most important stat that a tank needs in order to do their job well. No matter if you have reached the armor and defense cap, or if you're producing more threat than your DPS can keep up with, you won't live for a lick if you don't have enough health.

Defining minimum health is an important concept in end game raiding and groups. For most instances, a minimum of 10,000 to 11,000 unbuffed is needed. This will at least let you take a few blows from a boss before dying, hopefully enough blows that the healer will be able to get off a few heals on you. For more entry level raiding environments, it's necessary to have unbuffed health between 11,000 and 12,000. If you've got 11,500 hit points going into Kara, you'll probably be able to reach 13,000 health fully raid buffed. This will let you survive a good portion of Kara, which means you can get more gear, which begets more health in the long run.

Continue reading Maximum stamina

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Arcane Brilliance: 10 things every Mage should know before going into the Arena - Sat, 22 Mar 2008 17:00:00 EST

Each week Arcane Brilliance brings you a new batch of Mageliciousness, served fresh and piping hot on a magical floating snack table. This week, we take a long hard look at a sore spot for the Mage community at large: Arena PvP. Don't despair! Mages can be useful in Arenas...as long as we aren't being hit...or silenced...or cycloned repeatedly...or looked at sideways by a Warlock...

With patch 2.4 looming, many Mages may be making that final push to level 70 so they can participate in all that wonderful new content. If you missed Arcane Brilliance's look at what's new for us, you should check it out. We'll wait. Done? Good, because once you've had your fill of all that shiny new PvE hotness, you may find yourself wondering what else there is to do until the expansion hits. If you're slightly masochistic, or into self-flagellation, or possibly just mildly deranged, you may decide to try out the Arena.

Some may try to talk you out of it. You should probably listen to them. I'm not going to lie to you; it isn't pretty. People get hurt in there. Keyboards tend to become airborne. Expletives may be uttered, and not in a conversational tone. We're talking "hide the children, Daddy's saying the naughty words" kind of stuff. Especially when you're a Mage.

What's that? You still want to go?

Ok. But don't say I didn't warn you. Now that you've decided you simply must touch the stove in order to learn how hot it is, the least I can do is prepare you for that eventual burning sensation, and the emotional and possibly physical scarring that will eventually result. I will try to arm you for the coming battle, my friends, the best I know how.

After the jump, I'll list 10 things that I wish I'd known when I started my career as a gladiator.

A gladiator wielding a stick and wearing a dress.

Continue reading Arcane Brilliance: 10 things every Mage should know before going into the Arena

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How many outfits do you have? - Sat, 22 Mar 2008 16:00:00 EST


Alex recently talked about the lack of bag space for the hybrid class. This is quite true for them, as they have a hard time with the near infinite amount of bag space that is demanded of them. However looking at the non-hybrid classes, in particular a warrior, it can be seen that they too have their own issue of sorts. For an end game tank, it becomes less of an issue of actual bag space, and more of an issue of the limitless combinations of gear.

Most tanks swear by outfitter - a tool that allows you to quickly change around pre-saved outfits. For instance, say I'm going to be tanking the nature phase of Hydross. Before even setting foot in SSC, I would have spent an hour or so making sure I had all the necessary gear, stats, and configurations that Hydross requires. A good part of this time would be spent getting all those gearing changes into an easy to use outfitter profile - so I would just have to click one button to wear the gear.

Of course, that's resistant gear and it's expected that there'll have to be a bunch of switching of it. However, the gear switching doesn't end there.

Continue reading How many outfits do you have?

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