Scattered Shots is your weekly guide to improving your Hunter skills, brought to you by Jessica "Lassirra" Klein of The Hunter's Mark, covering a variety of Huntery topics. Today, we'll be taking a look at the new ranged weapons available from Ulduar.
With new raid instances comes new gear to covet, and Ulduar is no different. Normal and Heroic modes both have new guns and bows available to help give your shots that much more oomph, and today I'd like to take a closer look at these weapons to help you compare potential upgrades. Before we dive right into the new stuff, let's do a quick recap of the older ranged weapons so we'll have a point of reference to start from.
Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW Insider's series of fantasy death matches. This season's bosses come from the five-man instances of Wrath of the Lich King.
On the heels of a Zuramat the Obliterator (Violet Hold) victory this week over Hadronox of Azjol-Nerub, we bring you this week's fantasy deathmatch: the Maiden of Grief from Halls of Stone versus Prince Taldaram of Ahn'Kahet: The Old Kingdom. Can you predict the outcome?
The usual rules apply: Assume that these foes share similar levels, health pools and damage output. The battle will take place in neutral territory; Prince Taldaram will not be protected by a force field that must be taken down before battle. Focus your debate on the three S's: Style, Story and Scale. Don't get caught up in game mechanics and what actual players might do in each encounter. Consider the flavor each villainous gladiator brings to bear, leave your comment on what you think would happen and why, and then cast your vote for who you think would come out on top.
Blizzard has announced the final results of the qualifier rounds on the US Arena Tournament realms, and there they are -- you can see that Death Knights are probably the most dominant class in the lineup. Their teamup with a Paladin and a ranged DPS (specifically a Warlock, though there is a Hunter in there) is pretty devastating so far. Shaman have made a nice comeback as well, serving both as utility and healing on a few teams. And of course the old Arena standby of PMR finishes out the top ten.
Blizzard will invite the winners from the qualifying round into regional finals -- they will invite the top eight teams, but apparently, according to a few commenters in the forum thread, both "well then" and "GET TANKED" are somehow the same players on the same accounts (but different characters, even though they're same classes), and the same is supposedly true for The Phuox Den and Almost Eighty on Live. So we're not sure who they're inviting -- either these two teams will get to play twice in the tournament rounds, or Blizzard will pull in some more teams to fill in the spots.
Or maybe Blizzard will have to come up with something else: we're not entirely sure about which players are on those teams, but certainly Blizzard can check that very easily. At any rate, congrats to all of the winners so far, and we'll keep an eye out for the next round of Arena battles.
We here at WoW Insider are on a Daily Quest to bring you interesting, informative and entertaining WoW-related links from around the blogosphere.
The Hunting Lodge is running a charity auction for Child's Play next week. There's a compelling story to read over on Brigwyn's site, and I humbly suggest that everyone takes a moment to go over there and read how this great charity was able to help his family out. While games and gamers can get bad press, all anyone needs to do is to look at the story Brigwyn posted (and others have echoed around the net at various points) and be convinced otherwise.
And after you've visited the Hunting Lodge, there are some other great stories to check out around the wownet:
And a bug with Hunter pet talents was fixed -- supposedly now, when Hunters switch talent specs, Hunter pets will get their talents refunded. That's surprising to me -- though I kind of appreciate the chance to respec our pets whenever we switch specs, I sure would have thought that our pets would just get two trees as well. But then again, people might want to mix and match pet talents and talent specs, so I guess though it'll be a pain to re-punch in those talents (and remember to do so), it's the better way to go right now.
Great insight from Mania as always. And yes, outside of the Hunter domain, I, like many of Mania's commenters am slightly tired of the talent resets. With Hunter talents and all of the shots we learn from each tree, and pet talents and all of the decisions to make there, I'm pretty talent-ed out. Hopefully this 3.1.1 refund is the last one we'll see for a while.
I was going to follow up Adam's cute cat picture with a picture of my own pets, but since my landlord doesn't let me have any, I figure you're not interested in pictures of my roomba. It's quite cute in person, but unfortunately it comes across as a bit lifeless in pictures. It's a bit camera shy. jet242 asked...
"I was wondering whats the best way to make money off of copious amounts of cloth, I have around 600 pieces of Frostweave sitting in the bank."
Haven't gotten a chance to raid this week on the shaman, we've been pushing 25 man content pretty hard. Did manage to put 10 man Freya down (not on hard mode, holy heck that's going to be insane) which killed me when I didn't stand under a mushroom and was quite confused about being unable to cast spells while the raid leader yelled on vent about standing under the shrooms. Still, we got it done despite my total noobishness. As a healer, I've so far noticed that I somehow enjoy Kologarn for some reason. Something about the death rays and his screaming "OBLIVION!" all the time amuses me.
Ulduar has quite a few weapon drops to consider for us shamans, especially as more and more gear is being discovered every week. So let's take a look, starting in 10 man and then moving up to 25 man, at the various staves, fist weapons, maces, daggers and axes of Ulduar. We'll probably end up having to come back to cover more, as I mentioned they're constantly discovering new gear in this raid.
This daily list doesn't really seem to be getting any smaller. While some might call this patch "extremely buggy" or "unbalanced," I think the reason we're seeing all these small notes about the encounters is that Blizzard is being more transparent with their in-game updates. Three years ago there was not nearly as much public scrutiny on the launch of AQ40 as there is on the launch of Ulduar.
And being that we all clamor for more information in greater detail, I think what we're seeing is Blizzard meeting our needs in some ways.
Nonetheless, today's in game fixes after the break.
My favorite is a fix to Sethekk Halls (yes, you read that right): Killing Anzu in Sethekk Halls will properly save you to the instance.
The only change that we're told about right now in 3.1.1a will be indicting on the Exorcism tooltip that it will not damage other players. Exorcism was changed in 3.1.1, leaving many PvP Paladins unhappy.
As for when exactly this small patch will drop, we're not told. I wouldn't be surprised to see it tomorrow morning, however.
Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW Insider's series of fantasy death matches. This season's bosses come from the five-man instances of Wrath of the Lich King.
Zuramat the Obliterator sent Hadronox and his poison to the void this week in this week's Two Bosses Enter, One Boss Leaves fantasy matchup. Despite the choking clouds of poison Hadronox laid down for Zuramat's Void Sentries, Zuramat overpowered the giant spider in a tightly contested battle.
Let's start off with a look at the other scenario. "Absolutely Hadronox, hands down," claimed Daigeil. "Here's how it plays out. The two face up and start smackin' each other up. Quickly Hadronox drops poison clouds and places her DoTs. Soon, Zuramat does his thang, spawning Void Sentries all over the place, and casts Shroud of Darkness. Hadronox, being a huge spider (they aren't all that smart, y'know, and the average PuGger doesn't understand STOP ATTACKING; that leads us onto the debate of whether PuGgers or spiders are smarter, but let's not go there) just keeps hitting, stacking up the healing-cancelling effect.
"Soon, Void Shift comes into play. Having no other targets, Hadronox is shifted and drops Leech Poison, Acid Cloud and Web Grab, stacking all the Sentries on top of herself. Naturally, they all die shortly after Shroud's effect drops off, healing Hadronox to full! This repeats, and with Zuramat's limited array of abilities, it can only really go one way. By the time the poor Void Walker is dead, Hadronox is still at 100% from all the self-healing."
WoW Insider got a chance to play with the addon from its early beta on, and it's extremely impressive -- not only will you find the usual addictive peg-hitting gameplay that we've come to know from Peggle, but PopCap and creator Michael Fromwiller (whom we interviewed about Bejeweled, and who we're told is actually being hired on full-time at PopCap as soon as he finishes school this spring) have really added a new level to the game by tying it right into World of Warcraft. The game rewards you with "Talent points" that can change the gameplay itself, and you can challenge other players within World of Warcraft to duels and score battles. There's even a "Peggle loot" setting, which, when used as Master Looter, will let your guildies and friends with the addon actually take Peggle shots against each other to determine who gets loot drops.
It's really wild. Read on for our early impressions of the addon, check out the gallery below for exactly what it looks like, and then go head on over to PopCap's site to download it for free yourself.
And now, for something completely different, check out Yumfries's Sisqo + WoW = The Gnome song. I was tipped off to this video by Selserene, and I'm really quite glad for it. This video is a lot of fun, and it has more than a few "laugh out loud" moments.
The lyrics to the song are hilarious. I think the poetry touches an inner gnome in all of us. Who hasn't watched a Shetland Rogue get their groove on, and thought, "I like it when the gnomes go boing boing boing"? Yumfries was clearly aiming at comedy with his parody, and he did so in a light-hearted, harm-free way. I prefer parody that isn't mocking or belittling, and Yumfries isn't out to make fun of anyone in particular. He's just poking fun at the whole too-seriousness in all of us.
The video itself is pretty funny, too. Behold the glorious battle between Gnome and Draenei. I have it on good authority from D.E.H.T.A. that no actual stags were hurt in the filming of this video. Like the lyrics, I'm pretty sure Yumfries was just out to have a good time with his animation. It held my attention and made me giggle. The movie has a couple cut scenes with additional jokes and skits, so it's got a little something extra for those of us with short attention spans.
My hat's off to you, Yumfries. You have joined the Gnome Hall of Fame for a great parody video. I have to admit, when I saw this video for the first time, all I could think was "Brilliant!"
No one's kiling any folk here today, on account of we got a really tight schedule. -- Mal, "Trash."
Seemed to have some good luck with a previous Firefly quote, so why not? We're all set in Ahn'kahet, so let's pop over to Azjol-Nerub and lay waste to some bosses there.
Every achievement here is, in one way or another, a DPS race. If you've had difficulty with previous achievements in that vein or your DPS is still gearing up, you'll probably want to steer clear of Azjol for a while.
This is one of the few achievements in the game most efficiently done from a kamikaze perspective (Sarth-10 3D is the most notable of the other picks). Early attempts at this with two tanks, two DPS, and one healer failed miserably, mostly due to the combination of poisons, a Priest healer, and Watcher Narjil's Blinding Webs ability. I'll admit I tried that before anything good dropped from Naxx, so it may just have been a gear issue at the time, but:
a). If you have very good DPS, and:
b). If you're willing to suffer a repair bill
-- you can probably get this achievement in one or two tries without worrying about keeping all three Watchers tanked, bringing an off-tank, or risking a DPS having to kite all three to the entrance.
Dear Blizzard: Give me all of your gold and Ghostcrawler will be returned unharmed. If my demands are not met, I will be forced to put my cooking skills to use and prepare a wonderful crab meal for the rest of my guild. Please make checks payable to: Phaye, c/o Disdain, 1834 Riptide Avenue, Orgrimmar, Kalimdor, 01754. You have 48 hours to respond. Thanks to Phaye of Arthas for the screenshot and the accompanying text. Ghostcrawler doesn't look too upset about his predicament. Perhaps posting on the General Forum has conditioned him to accept abusive behavior?
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 email@example.com with a copy of your shot and a brief explanation of the scene. You could be featured here next!
Remember to include your player name, server and/or guild if you want it mentioned. Please include the word "Azeroth" in your post so it does not get swept into the spam bin. We strongly prefer full screen shots without the UI showing -- use alt-Z to remove it. Please, no more battleground scoreboards, double-mounts, or pictures of the Ninja Turtles in Dalaran.
The auction is being held online between 17th-27th April and all proceeds are going to the Peninsula Education Foundation in order to support all schools in the Palos Verdes Peninsula Unified School District. There are lots of different items on auction but Blizzard fans will be wanting to pay special attention to the World of Warcraft basket which has a starting bid of $1,100 and includes:
World of Warcraft: Collector's Edition (autographed by the development team)
World of Warcraft: Burning Crusade Collector's Edition (autographed by the development team)
World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King Collector's Edition (autographed by the development team)
A bunch of blogs have come up with this interesting discussion lately, with Saresa over at Twisted Nether collating all the posts on the topic. It's a pretty good question and some World of Warcraft bloggers have taken it upon themselves to answer the question -- we've got someone who wants to be a Mage; another who thinks she'd be a Warlock; while this lady believes she fits Paladins best; and finally one lady who actually wants to be a bear. We thought this was a clever idea and decided to share it with you for this morning. It might kick off a post for your own blogs, as well.
The cool thing is, I think that a lot of people fit into certain class archetypes, even without any of the abilities or spells. A priest at church would quite obviously be a Priest, while athlete fighters would probably be Warriors. Your uncle who goes off deer hunting in the Fall just might be a Marksmanship Hunter. With or without class skills and abilities, I'm sure we all have a class we sort of identify with, or whose powers we wished we possessed. You can even think of it as the WoW player's version of HEROES, choosing a class because of their powers.
Myself, I'd probably stick by the Paladin. Being able to cure diseases and heal the sick would be a great thing, while still being able to lay the smackdown on baddies. Of course, when things get hairy, I'd love to be able to put up an invincible force field and... go home. How about you? You can use this Shared Topic to write your own blog post, but at the same time we'd love to hear your ideas on which class you'd be in real life.
Rolling restarts for April 23rd, 2009 - Thu, 23 Apr 2009 02:00:00 EST Another round of rolling restarts will be hitting realms in a few hours, starting at 5 AM PDT. Rolling restarts tend to be relatively painless, so you can probably expect your home server to be back up within a few short minutes unless they're doing something other than the simple restarts.
These restarts have been happening very frequently lately, but as long as they're helping realm stability I really can't complain. For all the trouble Patch 3.1 has been, they're certainly working pretty hard to get things under control, and I can respect that.
No other information is provided on it, other than the promise for a preview when it's ready.
Magister's Terrace was released in Patch 2.4 and contained higher-than-normal item level equipment and weapons for players. Many people felt that Magsiter's Terrace was also the hardest 5-man dungeon introduced into the game at the time.
While there is no indication that this dungeon will be released with patch 3.2, I don't think it's a wild assumption to make. Blizzard has previously indicated a future patch will also contain a new battleground.
We might still be waiting on Battle.net here in Europe and the free iPhone authenicator app, but don't worry. Those of you who are eager for your account to be even more secure are in luck. European Blue Ancilorn has posted on the official forums that the authenticator is finally back in stock in the European Blizzard store -- complete with a new look!
So if you want/need one, head to the Blizzard store and get one before they're gone. What is €6.00/£4.80 for a little peace of mind?
In praise of fishing dailies - Wed, 22 Apr 2009 20:00:00 EST I have to say: I am so happy that we have fishing dailies back in the game. Leafshine has found a new addiction to fishing, and I have, too: though I'm a little underwhelmed with the actual rewards (while I was a little taken aback by the cooking daily awards system when it first came out, now I really like it, and wish they'd come up with a version of that for fishing), I like the quests, and I like taking my hard-earned Mastercraft Kalua'k Fishing Pole and going out into the world to find some fish. Leafshine is exactly right: it's a terrific way to kill a few minutes that really doesn't feel like a grind at all. And while you're out fishing, there's no better time to keep an eye out for pools, too -- you never know when that Turtle mount might drop.
You might say that fishing is boring, and it is -- though they've made some really generous changes to how it levels up, you're still going to be clicking a bobber for a long, long time. But it's never been so rewarding in terms of what you can get, and it is probably the most fleshed-out minigame in Azeroth. If you, like me, sometimes prefer a little break from the usual combat (the war, if you will, of Warcraft), I can't recommend Fishing highly enough.