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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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A case, and ideas for, more guild challenges - Thu, 25 Apr 2013 19:00:00 EST

Not too long ago, Arenanet recently made an update to Guild Wars 2. One of the included features is a set of guild missions that organized guilds can go out and complete. To be fair, World of Warcraft does have its own set of guild challenges:

  • Complete 15 scenarios
  • Complete 1 raid encounter
  • Complete 3 PvP battlegrounds
  • Complete 7 heroics
  • Complete 3 challenge mode dungeons

Throne of Thunder has added raid challenges within the instance itself. Every week, there's a quest that you'll encounter at random assigning you to kill specific trash.

It seems more of a laundry list of guild chores for gold than anything else. It's a cool way to help fund the guild bank and it does encourage players to do various activities together. But can we take it a step further? Let's look at the guild missions recently introduced in Guild Wars 2 and how they might translate into WoW.

There is some scaling technology in the game. The targets could get scaled up based on the size of your current raiding party. Or to make it even more interesting, every player's item level gets scaled down.urrent).

Continue reading A case, and ideas for, more guild challenges

A case, and ideas for, more guild challenges originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 25 Apr 2013 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WoW Moviewatch: Transmog Shop (NSFW) - Thu, 25 Apr 2013 18:00:00 EST

Warning: This video is Not Safe For Work. There's some occasional cursing and Princess Theradas flaunting her Willendorfer assets for several seconds.

I'm always excited to see new work from renowned machinima artist Ian Beckman. Mind you, I'm a bit biased since the two of us are acquainted (we briefly attended the same university -- he made me choke on my drink once while doing his Azerothian Super Villains Akama voice). Today's video is a parody of the song Thrift Shop by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, featuring Wanz. The parody tells the story of a goblin on his quest to look awesome using vanilla tier gear and transmogrification.

As a machinima parody the piece certainly does its job in recreating the original song and music video, but it's definitely not Beckman's best parody. The lyrics don't really capture the original, lacking both the fun humor of Macklemore's rap lyrics, and the energy and clarity of Wanz's chorus. In regards to the latter point, I think this is part to Beckman doing his best to imitate Wanz's deep vocals but not quite being suited for it. Pulling in another singer to do the part probably would have made it better.

I'm probably being a bit unfair in my critique though, simply because I'm so familiar with Beckman's work. If this was produced by some no name machinima artist I'd probably be perfectly happy with it. You also have to consider what an incredibly difficult song Thrift Shop is to parody, with its many layers of instruments and vocals. Beckman certainly nails the distinct sound of the original and that's no small feat. I really do love the concept of this parody, so I'll keep my fingers crossed that Beckman might keep working on it to fine tune some of the shortcomings.

As an afterthought, I have to say I enjoy how this video clip fits in with the rest of Beckman's work. He's been playing since vanilla and it's always interesting to see how that inspires his present day work, like That's the World of Warcraft That I Used To Play. Transmog Shop gives off a similar vibe to Beckman's Gotye parody, using a new WoW feature to harken back to the old. It offers a nice contrast to other popular machinima and parody artists whose works tend to only reflect the current expansion.

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 email at moviewatch@wowinsider.com.

WoW Moviewatch: Transmog Shop (NSFW) originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 25 Apr 2013 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Ghostcrawler on the lessons learned in Mists - Thu, 25 Apr 2013 17:00:00 EST

Long-term WoW Insider readers will likely remember the post-Cataclysm dissection where the developers discussed the mistakes they had made and how they planned to rectify them for future expansions. Well, a twitter user has asked Blizzard Lead Systems Designer Greg "Ghostcrawler" Street the same question, for Mists of Pandaria, and Ghostcrawler had the following to say in reply:

Firstly, one of the great things about Ghostcrawler is how readily he owns up to the team's mistakes here. There's no shame in getting things wrong, but maintaining that you're infallible is both irritating and generally untrue.

Continue reading Ghostcrawler on the lessons learned in Mists

Ghostcrawler on the lessons learned in Mists originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 25 Apr 2013 17:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The OverAchiever: Guide to Children's Week 2013 - Thu, 25 Apr 2013 16:00:00 EST

Every Thursday, The Overachiever shows you how to work toward those sweet achievement points. This week, the children are our future, and oh, how we hate them.

In the aggregate, Children's Week is one of the most entertaining annual holidays. Dragging a small child with you around Azeroth's grand vistas and dangerous places is surprisingly fun ("I want to go to the Dark Portal." "Sure, why not?"), and it's a fairly immersive reminder that the planet's constant wars have almost certainly left a large population of orphans for each faction to rear. Also, getting a pet or the aptly-named Curmudgeon's Payoff is pretty cool too.

But.

(You knew the "but" was coming.)

Unfortunately for all of you poor sods who still don't have School of Hard Knocks, that achievement still exists. I hated it so much that it was the sole remaining achievement between me and What A Long, Strange Trip It's Been for a year. With account-wide achievements, you no longer have to do it on multiple characters (and the whole system was worth it if for no other reason than that), but you'll still need it on one. Sorry, folks.

Anyway, Children's Week 2013 runs from April 29 to May 6, and, as always, the achievements and the meta For The Children are part of the year-long What A Long, Strange Trip It's Been.

Continue reading The OverAchiever: Guide to Children's Week 2013

The OverAchiever: Guide to Children's Week 2013 originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 25 Apr 2013 16:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Who's afraid of a little ol' bear? - Thu, 25 Apr 2013 15:00:00 EST

It appears that WoW Insider's illustrious editor-in-chief Alex Ziebart is afraid of bears. While acknowleding their real-world badassery, he still seems confounded by their power.


Bears? Really? But players chimed in: Bears are notoriously tough, from Azeroth to Earth and other worlds online. I'd agree that bears are tough cookies and I give them wide berth, but they don't inspire the same fear in me that skeletons do. There's no getting around the unnatural aggro radius of even a garden variety skeleton. Oozes are like that, too; my head tells me I'm not afraid of them, but they aggro and gank me in some pitiful, overbalanced way every single time.

Confess: Is there some type of monster you're irrationally afraid of and avoid on principle, no matter what level it might be? Is it unique to Azeroth, or do you find that that particular beastie remains your nemesis in every game you play?

Who's afraid of a little ol' bear? originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 25 Apr 2013 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WoW Archivist: Emo Garrosh and the Hero of the Mag'har - Thu, 25 Apr 2013 14:00:00 EST

WoW Archivist explores the secrets of World of Warcraft's past. What did the game look like years ago? Who is etched into WoW's history? What secrets does the game still hold?

Mists of Pandaria has many great story lines: the emergence of the Sha, the Mantid war, the history of the Mogu, the Thunder King and the Zandarlari, etc. The overarching story of this expansion has been the ongoing aggression between the Alliance and the Horde, and the central figure of that conflict is Garrosh.

Patch 5.3 will bring us the beginning of the Horde's revolt against its current warchief, and presumably we will depose him with extreme prejudice in 5.4.

Garrosh's story did not begin in Mists, however, or even in Wrath of the Lich King when he led the Horde's assault on Northrend. Way back in The Burning Crusade, an outstanding quest line called Hero of the Mag'har introduced us to a very different Garrosh: a troubled young orc, helpless, hopeless, wishing for death.

If you've only ever played as Alliance, you never got to experience this chain of quests and its many great moments. For Horde players, it's well worth revisiting.

Continue reading WoW Archivist: Emo Garrosh and the Hero of the Mag'har

WoW Archivist: Emo Garrosh and the Hero of the Mag'har originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 25 Apr 2013 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Everything you need to know about WoW's talents and specializations - Thu, 25 Apr 2013 13:00:00 EST

We're going back to basics today to talk about talents and specializations in World of Warcraft. If you're pretty new to the game, you might not know what these are at all, but anyone over level 10 has at least seen the terms thrown around. We're going to explain just what talents and specializatons mean for your character and well as how to get the most out of your talent choices.

What are specializations?
At level 10, every character (save death knights, who start at level 55) is prompted to choose a talent specialization. While many spells and abilities are core to the class -- meaning you'll get them no matter which specialization you choose -- there are also abilities that you only get if you've chosen a particular specialization. Each specialization focuses on a slightly different playstyle, so you should pick the one that most appeals to you.

Continue reading Everything you need to know about WoW's talents and specializations

Everything you need to know about WoW's talents and specializations originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 25 Apr 2013 13:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Beast master catalogs the biological diversity of Azeroth - Thu, 25 Apr 2013 12:00:00 EST

A fantasy game like World of Warcraft doesn't have to stick too closely (or even at all) to the laws of science -- but oh, when the two worlds collide, players who love both can discover a true thing of beauty. That's how it came to pass that a zookeeper from Florida has created a taxinomical website outlining the biology of the wildlife of Azeroth. WoW Biology 101 offers curious players a scientifically grounded look at the creatures of WoW, both fantastical and based on reality.

"I think when we see these connections, it brings these worlds a little closer together and, for me at least, increases my enjoyment of both," notes Banya, a beast master hunter (because you knew that's what she'd play, right?) on Drenden (US). "My site is truly just flavor and a potentially different way to look at the game. When you're running around and see one of the awesome animals in game, my site would let you know how closely it is based off of a real-life animal. "

Continue reading Beast master catalogs the biological diversity of Azeroth

Beast master catalogs the biological diversity of Azeroth originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 25 Apr 2013 12:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The Queue: Repost - Thu, 25 Apr 2013 11:00:00 EST

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Adam Holisky (@adamholisky) will be your host today.

I'm reposting this awesome KISS image from Around Azeroth yesterday. It deserves a repost because of its amazingness.

Jordan asked:

Do y'all think we'll ever get the option to choose multiple races per faction? For example, one could roll a Broken instead of a Draenei, but simply start on the Isle with the same quests and gameplay as if starting a Draenei. This would take zero new coding effort, other than maybe implementing a few new animations for the Broken. Similarly, Forsaken could play one of those undead elf banshee women things.

Continue reading The Queue: Repost

The Queue: Repost originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 25 Apr 2013 11:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Around Azeroth: Down on Old Man Lovecraft's farm - Thu, 25 Apr 2013 10:00:00 EST

"They said it couldn't be done, but after numerous failed attempts I finally solved the Puzzle Box of Yogg-Saron," writes submitter Zlomort of Avoiding Reality on Hydraxis (US-H). "I sat on my farm diligently working away at it until things just seemed to fall into place. The sides slid in ways they never had before, my fingers tracing every line of its delicately etched surface. It almost seemed like the box was using me to solve itself. It didn't open, though. There wasn't something locked inside of it; there was something locked outside of it! I think it likes its new home, warm and safe under my farm. People come to visit it all the time, but I never see them leave. Maybe you'd like to visit us sometime?"

Want to see your own screenshot here? Send it to aroundazeroth@wowinsider.com. We strongly prefer full-sized pictures with no UI or names showing. Include "Azeroth" in the subject line to ensure your submission dodges email spam filters; if you'd like to be credited, also include your name, guild and realm.

Around Azeroth: Down on Old Man Lovecraft's farm originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 25 Apr 2013 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mists' talent system revamp: Hit or miss? - Thu, 25 Apr 2013 09:00:00 EST

We've had the new talent system now for eight months, and it's had time to settle in, so it seems that it's an appropriate time to see whether it has been a success in its objectives, to assess the pros and cons of the new system.

In case you forgot, Wrath of the Lich King featured 71 talent points, which were distributed over three trees, resulting in some entertaining builds, and no requirement to place the last talent in the tree. The Burning Crusade was similar, but with 10 fewer points, and slightly smaller trees as a result. By the time Cataclysm rolled around, adding an additional five levels, there was concern about this system being bloated, daunting, and unnecessarily complex. So, with Cataclysm came a simplification: 31-point talent trees. At the time, Zarhym explained the change as follows:

Zarhym
We'd rather have a simpler design with a lot of depth, than a complicated but shallow design. The goal for Cataclysm remains to remove a lot of the passive (or lame) talents, but we don't think that's possible with the current tree size. To resolve this, we're reducing each tree to 31-point talents.

Cata also added a requirement that you get to the end talent of your main tree before moving onto the next, effectively removing the hybrid builds that had occasionally surfaced. But that change clearly wasn't enough, as most readers of WoW Insider will recall, there was a further revamp at the start of Mists, moving to the current system. It was a far more drastic change, too, with the disappearance of the talent trees we'd grown used to seeing. But was it a change for the better?

Continue reading Mists' talent system revamp: Hit or miss?

Mists' talent system revamp: Hit or miss? originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 25 Apr 2013 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Breakfast Topic: What made you choose your class? - Thu, 25 Apr 2013 08:00:00 EST

A little while back, someone asked me why I ended up playing a shaman. I'll give you a brief run-down of the events that led me to a little red-headed dwarf... and the other shaman!

My first character was a paladin. I'd been told to play one by the people who talked me into playing WoW in the first place, and I kind of liked it. As much as anything, it was a sentimental attachment. My friend Chris had made the character for me, and named it, and my friend Mark had taught me roughly how to play it. I was still kind of a noob, when I was leveling my way through a zone and saw what I now know was a shaman. I'd been trying to kill some mobs, and having a hard time, partly because I was new to the game, and partly because I was specced into holy.

This shaman planted their totems and unleashed a torrent of lightning bolts into one of these tricky mobs, and it died before it even got to them. I was impressed! I didn't even know, at the time, what that class was, but a brief description to my guild-mates soon clarified it. I decided at that point that my next class would be one of those, and rolled one the same day. And somewhere along the way I lost the bug for massive DPS and started healing.

That's me, but what about you? What made you choose your class? Was it seeing another? A feeling of personal identity? A preference from previous games?

Breakfast Topic: What made you choose your class? originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 25 Apr 2013 08:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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First round of BlizzCon tickets sold out - Wed, 24 Apr 2013 22:24:00 EST

As has been the case in years prior, if you didn't get into tonight's ticket queue within the first half of the first second of availability, you were out of luck. BlizzCon tickets have already sold out. If you didn't get lucky today, don't panic quite yet -- there's another round of ticket sales on Saturday, April 27 at 10 a.m. PDT.

First round of BlizzCon tickets sold out originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 24 Apr 2013 22:24:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Icy Veins class guides given stamp of approval by top guilds, theorycrafters - Wed, 24 Apr 2013 20:00:00 EST

The WoW community is so old and so large that there's often a dispute about where to go to get the best information about your class. In the past, Elitist Jerks was often recommended as the one-stop, hot spot, but nowadays the best class resources seem to be speckled around the web at sites like HowToPriest.com or Totem Spot. So what do you do if you want to find it all in one place? The WoW resource site Icy Veins (probably best known for their dungeon guides) is looking for an answer to that question.

Earlier today Icy Veins announced that their class guides have been reviewed and approved by players from top guilds and other notable members of the community. Looking for an up-to-date elemental shaman guide? How about one that's been approved by Leeds from the guild Method? Or maybe you'd like a mistweaver monk guide checked off by DREAM Paragon monk, Unpl?

Continue reading Icy Veins class guides given stamp of approval by top guilds, theorycrafters

Icy Veins class guides given stamp of approval by top guilds, theorycrafters originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 24 Apr 2013 20:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The case of the next Warchief, revisited - Wed, 24 Apr 2013 19:00:00 EST

My first post on this topic garnered a lot of really interesting comments, and a lot of puzzled folks scratching their heads over why certain other candidates weren't considered. My intention with the last post was to examine the other Horde racial leaders (and Thrall, who was formerly the racial leader of the orcs), but I recognize that I didn't clearly state that. Furthermore, I love character analysis, so I'm always looking for an excuse to do more of it. This follow-up is in the spirit of continuing speculation.

I do want to say right off the bat that I personally don't think any of the folks discussed in this post really have a chance, but more unexpected things have happened in the course of WoW's plot development!

Continue reading The case of the next Warchief, revisited

The case of the next Warchief, revisited originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 24 Apr 2013 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WoW Moviewatch: WoW Lore Lesson: Rexxar - Wed, 24 Apr 2013 18:00:00 EST

I've not featured many of these WoW Lore Lessons from Dorons Movies, but I'm shamefully behind on my Rexxar-chops, so I figured now would be a good time. WoW Lore Lesson: Rexxar is a handy catch-up on some key lore moments. The whole series is like this, although Dorons has a few technical challenge with the videos.

I'd try and use some in-game graphics to spice up the videos. I know it can be a pain to avoid copyright violations, but the video really needs that little touch to keep the action more intriguing. While he puts a lot of effort into narration, a 10 minute speech without narration can be a little... rough... to get through. Still, it's a good effort, and I appreciate your work.

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 email at moviewatch@wowinsider.com.

WoW Moviewatch: WoW Lore Lesson: Rexxar originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 24 Apr 2013 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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It came from the Blog: Join us for Bar Crawl 2013 - Wed, 24 Apr 2013 17:00:00 EST

It's time for this month's It came from the Blog event and we're going to be virtually drinking. Again. This time the excuse is so that we can hit some famous and not-so-famous bars around Azeroth.

We'll begin our journey with Barkeep Morag in Orgrimmar. Here are the details:
  • When: Friday, April 26 at 10:30 p.m. EDT (7:30 p.m. PDT, 8:30 p.m. server time)
  • Where: Meet at the inn in the Valley of Strength, Orgrimmar on Zangarmarsh (US-PvE-H)
  • Who: Any character level 10 or above
  • How: Just ask any It came from the Blog member if you are not already in our family of guilds.
  • What: Virtual booze, travel, more virtual booze, probably no death -- this time
You should be at least level 10, so that you can join a raid group. You also should have some money for drinking, but I can provide libations for those who are short on cash.

So join us for Bar Crawl 2013! And if you normally play Alliance please create a Horde character and join us anyway. You'll be able to see some places that are new to you and have some fun as well.

Please join us on Zangarmarsh (US-PvE-H) in It came from the Blog. All guild ranks can invite, so /whisper Tizzi or any online member. You are all welcome as long as you play by our simple rules -- basically, don't be a funsucker! Visit the guild FAQ for more details.

It came from the Blog: Join us for Bar Crawl 2013 originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 24 Apr 2013 17:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The wait continues for Pierre and the Skyclaw - Wed, 24 Apr 2013 16:00:00 EST

The mystery of Pierre and the Sky Claw continues. These creations burst onto the scene in the patch 5.2 PTR patch notes back in January, when we were enthralled by Pierre's cooking capabilities, and the Sky Claw's two-person mount potential. Engineers were thrilled at their appearance, but alas, it was not to be.

When we last heard from our potent pair, they had been recently removed from patch 5.2, for undisclosed reasons. This last update came our way in early March, and we have had no word since. Until now. Blizzard Lead Content Designer Cory "Mumper" Stockton tweeted the following:

What has happened to Pierre and the Skyclaw? Have we sent out a search party? Are they in Vashj'ir, solving underwater crimes? Is it simply that Lil' Ragnaros is jealous and has banished Pierre to the Elemental Plane, and the Skyclaw is trying to build up the stones to fly down and snatch him out? Or is it possible that something more sinister is afoot...

WoW Insider recently made mention of a new contender for engineers' hearts and pockets, the Bad Robot, due to grace our screens in 'a future patch'. Could it be that the bad robot has lived up to his name and put paid to Pierre and the Skyclaw? Could this be the darkest hour for our dynamic duo? Who will help them now?

The wait continues for Pierre and the Skyclaw originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 24 Apr 2013 16:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The WoW Insider Show Episode 291 - Wed, 24 Apr 2013 15:00:00 EST

Every week, join us as we present you with The WoW Insider Show podcast -- an hour's worth of WoW community discussion covering everything from the week's top stories here on WoW Insider to emails from our readers and what's been going on with our particular characters in Azeroth.

Want to have your question answered on the air? Email theshow@wowinsider.com!

Get the podcast:

[iTunes] Subscribe to the WoW Insider Show directly in iTunes.
[RSS] Add the WoW Insider Show to your RSS aggregator.
[MP3] Download the MP3 directly.

Listen here on the page:


The WoW Insider Show Episode 291 originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 24 Apr 2013 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Developer Q&A on Thursday, April 25 - Wed, 24 Apr 2013 14:00:00 EST

Yesterday evening the WoW official blog announced there there will be a CoverItLive Q&A session at 5:30 pm PDT with Blizzard developers Dave Kosak, Ion Hazzikostas, Brian Holinka, Cory Stockton, and Greg Street on the subject of Mists of Pandaria's gameplay and design. Familiar community managers Bashiok, Crithto, Daxxarri, Rygarius, and Zarhym will be your friendly neighborhood moderators for the event. The session is scheduled to last around 45 minutes, though I'm certain many more minutes worth of questions will be asked!

I'm excited to see this event come around, Blizzard has hosted a few CoverItLive chats in the past and they're always very interesting to see. The real-time interaction is fun and gratifying, and we always learn new things about the game and Blizzard's approach to development. For those of you who may not have seen one of these before, you can check out WoW Insider's transcripts of previous live developer Q&A's to get a sense of what to expect:
Get your questions ready for Thursday, and we hope to see you there!

Developer Q&A on Thursday, April 25 originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 24 Apr 2013 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Know Your Lore: Where is the rest of the Alliance? - Wed, 24 Apr 2013 13:00:00 EST

The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how -- but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.

This, for me, is the real disappointment of the past few Mists of Pandaria patches. We've seen what Lor'themar, Baine and Vol'jin are up to in regards to Garrosh's plans for the Horde. While Sylvanas has taken a more circumspect path in this expansion, we're getting a sense of what the Horde's other leaders think about what the Horde is becoming.

What we haven't seen, aside from Jaina Proudmoore's returning the Kirin Tor to the Alliance fold, is any sense of what leaders who aren't Varian are up to. Now, 5.3 shows us what's going on with the Council of Three Hammers in Ironforge, and we've seen Tyrande's brief appearance in the A Little Patience scenario (where she gets to be her old, impetuous self in order that Varian can look statesmanlike) but where's Velen? You'd think that the Sha menace would interest him. Where's Genn Greymane, who has literally done nothing since he installed himself in Stormwind two years ago? I know it's probably expecting too much that Gelbin Mekkatorque might spare time away from doing nothing outside of Gnomeregan, but still, there's been a surprising lack of involvement for these Alliance figures over the years, and it's getting worrisome.

I've mentioned before that I don't want the Alliance turning into The Adventures of Varian Wrynn and his Amazing Friends, not even with Jaina playing both Iceman and Firestar lately. I want an Alliance that's more like a Justice League, where there's room for every faction to take part.

Continue reading Know Your Lore: Where is the rest of the Alliance?

Know Your Lore: Where is the rest of the Alliance? originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 24 Apr 2013 13:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The Queue: O Warchief! My Warchief! - Wed, 24 Apr 2013 12:00:00 EST

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Alex Ziebart will be your host today.

Why is the Queue late!? The sky is falling! What will I do at work!? I'm bored!

Sorry about that. Turns out time flies when you're making BlizzCon plans.

kurtsmith1983 asked:

Weird question if we do end up killing garrosh in next raid instead of just leaving him hurt and in prison. Will we get the achievment for slaying the warchief and have it count towards For the Alliance achievment cause i want my bear mount

Continue reading The Queue: O Warchief! My Warchief!

The Queue: O Warchief! My Warchief! originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 24 Apr 2013 12:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Reminder: Blizzcon tickets on sale today - Wed, 24 Apr 2013 11:00:00 EST

It's that time again, time for furious clicking, frantic drop-down menu selections, and long, long queue times. DPS in the dungeon finder during peak hour queue times. BlizzCon tickets will be on sale today starting at 7 pm PDT. If previous years are any indication they will be gone fast, so be prepared. If you can't get them today for whatever reason, they will be on sale again on Saturday, April 27 at 10 am PDT. If you miss out then, there is a third chance to get a ticket as part of the Orange County Children's Hospital pre-BlizzCon benefit dinner, and those tickets will on sale Wednesday, May 1st at 7 pm PDT.

As in 2011, BlizzCon tickets will cost US$175 each. In previous years there has been a limit to the number of tickets an individual is allowed to buy, so I assume that will once more be the case. If you're trying for tickets good luck and happy clicking!

Reminder: Blizzcon tickets on sale today originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 24 Apr 2013 11:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Around Azeroth: KISS of Pandaria - Wed, 24 Apr 2013 10:00:00 EST

Oh, wow. Oh wow. I cannot help but feel honored that Quasimojo of The Shinigami on Sargeras (US-A) has chosen my column to receive this, the greatest piece of art featuring pandas dressed as the members of KISS in the history of the universe. He even got Gene Simmons' tongue in there. Peter Griffin would be proud. If you want to make this picture your wallpaper -- and you should -- a 1920x1200 version can be found here.

Want to see your own screenshot here? Send it to aroundazeroth@wowinsider.com. We strongly prefer full-sized pictures with no UI or names showing. Include "Azeroth" in the subject line to ensure your submission dodges email spam filters; if you'd like to be credited, also include your name, guild and realm.

Around Azeroth: KISS of Pandaria originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 24 Apr 2013 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Four transmog sets for today's retro-bution paladin - Wed, 24 Apr 2013 09:00:00 EST

Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

Before we jump into our completely serious, no-nonsense discussion this week, I suppose we better touch on the one piece of retribution-related news coming from the 5.3 PTR:

Sword of Light now increases damage with two-handed melee weapons by 30%, up from 15%.

Naturally I, like many of you, got a warm fuzzy feeling reading that particular sentence. Higher overall damage from weapon-based attacks? Sign me up!

While I don't mean to bite the hand that feeds, I am concerned that this is merely a bandage meant to keep ret from lagging too far behind until 6.0 and, as such, ultimately fails to address the cause of the problem.

I'm just spitballing here, but there was talk at the tail end of Cataclysm and the very beginning of Mists that in our calculated stat weights for T14H BiS, strength was already somewhat devalued in comparison to secondary stats, especially haste, and that this could lead to ret scaling much less efficiently than other melee using similar gear.

Regardless, the buff is appreciated, but I'm more looking forward to what the next expansion has in store for our spec.

Continue reading Four transmog sets for today's retro-bution paladin

Four transmog sets for today's retro-bution paladin originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 24 Apr 2013 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Breakfast Topic: Making time for roleplay - Wed, 24 Apr 2013 08:00:00 EST

I sometimes like to deny it, but I'm really a roleplayer at heart. I can't have a character on screen for longer than a few minutes without inventing some labyrinthine back story. That throwaway gnome Warlock, which just happened to like Engineering? Spontaneously he's pioneering the art of Imp-powered steam engines. That blood elf Death Knight? Sure, he used to be a Warrior but he embraced the dark side as a way to get magic back.

I can't help myself. But it's hard to find time for roleplay. Between work, a daughter, and a dog, my time's pretty precious. So I squeeze in a few minutes of random conversation while waiting for the queue to pop, and otherwise just amuse myself with stories in my head.

How do you find time for roleplay? Modern life moves fast, and it's easy to let it just blink by. Where do squeeze in little bits of roleplay to keep the passion alive?

Breakfast Topic: Making time for roleplay originally appeared on WoW Insider on Wed, 24 Apr 2013 08:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Encrypted Text: An interview with Pathal, Shadowcraft's unofficial lead dev - Tue, 23 Apr 2013 20:00:00 EST

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Encrypted Text for assassination, combat and subtlety rogues. Chase Christian will be your guide to the world of shadows every Wednesday. Feel free to email me with any questions or article suggestions you'd like to see covered here.

After Aldriana decided to give up the title of master rogue theorycrafter, nobody knew who would take up his mantle. A handful of rogue champions worked together to develop Shadowcraft's engine for Mists of Pandaria. As time has marched on, many rogues faded away, but one has risen to the top. Pathal has been the lead developer working on the Shadowcraft back-end for several months now, tweaking the numbers as patches and hotfixes drop and working on exposing more options and expanding SC's capabilities.

I had the opportunity to speak with Pathal about his history as a rogue, what he thinks of the class and its mechanics, how he got started in rogue theorycrafting, and what working on Shadowcraft has been like.

Continue reading Encrypted Text: An interview with Pathal, Shadowcraft's unofficial lead dev

Encrypted Text: An interview with Pathal, Shadowcraft's unofficial lead dev originally appeared on WoW Insider on Tue, 23 Apr 2013 20:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Select pet types may receive new passives in Pet Battles - Tue, 23 Apr 2013 19:00:00 EST

Blizzard community managers Nakatoir and Crithto have recently announced potential changes coming to Elemental, Aquatic, Critter, and Magic passive abilities in the Pet Battle system. The Pet Battle system is still relatively new compared to the 8-year-old World of Warcraft and very much in flux. As pets and their abilities are buffed and nerfed, the system as a whole needs to adjust to accommodate those changes.

The short version of these proposed changed are as follows:
  • Elementals will lose their immunity to weather, instead taking reduced damage on their first round in play
  • Critters will become completely immune to crowd control rather than reducing their duration to one round
  • Magic pets cannot be dealt more than 35% of their health in one attack, changed from 40%
  • Aquatic pets will reduce damage taken from Damage over Time effects by 50%, up from 25%
Crithto and Nakatoir's full posts can be found behind the cut below.

Continue reading Select pet types may receive new passives in Pet Battles

Select pet types may receive new passives in Pet Battles originally appeared on WoW Insider on Tue, 23 Apr 2013 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WoW Moviewatch: The Adventures of Tinkerbottom - Tue, 23 Apr 2013 18:00:00 EST

The Adventures of Tinkerbottom provides an interesting approach to machinima. It's essentially a which-way novel but in video form. The creator allows the audience to choose specific actions, and the character takes the action left in comments.

The experiment seems to be going pretty well. While the comments tend to try and dictate the next sequence, rather than just the appropriate action, it looks like Tinkerbottom is building quite the community. Now's definitely the time to scoot on over and check the series out. I think this could really grow into something awesome.

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 email at moviewatch@wowinsider.com.

WoW Moviewatch: The Adventures of Tinkerbottom originally appeared on WoW Insider on Tue, 23 Apr 2013 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 5.2 hotfixes for April 22 - Tue, 23 Apr 2013 17:00:00 EST

Some hotfixes went live today after the server restart. The big one that has my guildmates jumping up and down with glee is the change to the cost of Mogu Runes of Fate - they now cost 50 Lesser Charms of Good Fortune, down from 90 previously. Now, I do lots of dailies, so I couldn't get rid of my Lesser Charms fast enough even before the price nerf, but this is a great quality of life change that will give people more Runes of Fate to spend on chances for gear.

In addition, players picked from different realms will now be able to get loot and bonus rolls off of Oondasta and Nalak, and there are some minor nerfs to the Twin Consorts fight in Throne of Thunder. The Sinister Primal Diamond has also had some tweaks to its activation rate, particularly for fire mages. The full blue text is below the cut.

Continue reading Patch 5.2 hotfixes for April 22

Patch 5.2 hotfixes for April 22 originally appeared on WoW Insider on Tue, 23 Apr 2013 17:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Totem Talk: Resto shaman wish list - Tue, 23 Apr 2013 16:00:00 EST

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Totem Talk for elemental, enhancement and restoration shaman. Want to be a sultan of swing healing? A champion of Chain Heal? Totem Talk: Restoration, brought to you by Joe Perez (otherwise known as Lodur from World of Matticus and content creation at InternetDragons.TV), shows you how.

Last time we spoke about the recent changes to shaman healing. We received a nice little buff in a hot patch to our Healing Rain, Chain Heal and Earthliving. The 20% increase was a quality of life improvement that did actually go a decent ways towards improving our overall healing. While I enjoy pretty much any buff we get, I still can't help but sometimes just sit down and take a look at where we are in regards to other healers.

Basically, I like to sit down and pose the question to other restoration shaman and myself. What is the one thing that you would like to see shaman healers get? What is it that you wish you could do as a shaman healer that you can't currently do? It's a great exercise in creative thinking, or even just taking a look at your own class, and can lead to some very interesting conversations and ideas when shared with other healers like I enjoy on Twitter.

Continue reading Totem Talk: Resto shaman wish list

Totem Talk: Resto shaman wish list originally appeared on WoW Insider on Tue, 23 Apr 2013 16:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Review of Dawn of the Aspects, part three by Richard A. Knaak - Tue, 23 Apr 2013 15:00:00 EST

The action in Dawn of the Aspects heated up exponentially in part two of the series by Richard A. Knaak -- and part three only continues to both clarify and confuse in the most brain-bending, delightful way.

The third installment of Dawn of the Aspects, released Monday, continues to explore the purpose of the mysterious artifact Kalegos uncovered back in part one. It seems as though the visions Kalec has been experiencing are growing far more intense, enough to make the former Aspect question the reality of the future we're currently living in. More importantly, there are some important and thoroughly bizarre revelations that may actually shed some light on the Aspects as they turned out in present day.

Although the installments continue to be slightly confusing, we're beginning to get a grasp on just what this story is all about. And as mentioned in our last review, it's becoming far more clear that what happened in the past is apparently not only relevant, but incredibly important to the events of present day. Dawn of the Aspects is, so far, proving to be a delightful mystery of a book, not quite like anything we've seen come before.

Continue reading Review of Dawn of the Aspects, part three by Richard A. Knaak

Review of Dawn of the Aspects, part three by Richard A. Knaak originally appeared on WoW Insider on Tue, 23 Apr 2013 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The case of the next Warchief - Tue, 23 Apr 2013 14:00:00 EST

Patch 5.3 is a-coming, and the Siege of Orgrimmar is drawing nearer and nearer every day. One question that I know is on everyone's mind is, who will be the next warchief? We know Garrosh is getting deposed - we don't yet know if he's going to die - and someone will have to take his place.

So who should it be? The obvious choice is one of the racial leaders, though exactly which one is up for debate. I thought it would be fun to analyze some of the potential candidates and tease out what might make them a reasonable choice of warchief both inside and outside the story. Let's start with some of the easily dismissible, for brevity's sake.

This post contains some minor spoilers for patch 5.3, so be warned!

Continue reading The case of the next Warchief

The case of the next Warchief originally appeared on WoW Insider on Tue, 23 Apr 2013 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Lichborne: Patch 5.3 and other news for death knights - Tue, 23 Apr 2013 13:00:00 EST

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done.

With patch 5.2 having, if not solved, at least soothed most of our balance problems, patch 5.3 seems like a relatively quiet patch for death knights. Our class changes are a handful of relatively small fixes.

That said, there's still a good amount of content coming. Today, we'll look at patch 5.3 content and what it offers for the death knight. Note that what we're discussing today is primarily PTR content, and thus may not make it live, or will make it live in a slightly different format.

Continue reading Lichborne: Patch 5.3 and other news for death knights

Lichborne: Patch 5.3 and other news for death knights originally appeared on WoW Insider on Tue, 23 Apr 2013 13:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Patch 5.3 PTR patch notes for April 22 - Tue, 23 Apr 2013 12:00:00 EST

The latest set of updates to the latest build landed on the Blizzard blog last night, and there are some more pretty big changes coming in on the PTR. As well as the usual class balance fixes, which bring some more number balancing to Atonement for discipline priests, as well as to paladins' Battle Healer, there are some fairly notable quality of life changes being made to the older content in this expansion.
  • Experience needed to increase from level 85 to level 90 has been reduced by 33%.
  • Players no longer need to have defeated Grand Empress Shek'zeer to enter the Terrace of Endless Spring in Normal difficulty.
And what's more, for current content, there is a substantial change to the acquisition quest for Mogu Runes of Fate.
  • Reduced the number of Lesser Charms of Good Fortune needed for the Mogu Runes of Fate weekly quest to 50, down from 90.
The experience nerf and the Lesser Charm change are the most interesting here, and it seems like Blizzard might be rethinking some of their earlier ideas on how hard the grind has to be in order to encourage players to stay and level their alts. What do you think?

Hit the break for the full notes.

Continue reading Patch 5.3 PTR patch notes for April 22

Patch 5.3 PTR patch notes for April 22 originally appeared on WoW Insider on Tue, 23 Apr 2013 12:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The Queue: Zug zug - Tue, 23 Apr 2013 11:00:00 EST

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Adam Holisky (@adamholisky) will be your host today.

You know what I'm going to play through this weekend (the first weekend I've had off in about a month)? Warcraft III. Forget all these other games, everything else that's got flashy graphics and 80 hours of gameplay. It's time for some good ol' zug zug.

Mar asked:

Previous expacs it was mentioned that pets take a "screencap of your stats" when they're summoned(So you should BL/Heroism before popping a pet CD). Now, however - I'm told - some pets have become dynamic and those that aren't apparently will only benefit from buffs like BL/Heroism AFTER they are summoned. What's correct?

Continue reading The Queue: Zug zug

The Queue: Zug zug originally appeared on WoW Insider on Tue, 23 Apr 2013 11:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Around Azeroth: You give us those nice bright colors, you give us the greens of summers - Tue, 23 Apr 2013 10:00:00 EST

Submitter Emanuelle of Sinners on Darkspear (EU-H) apparently took my characterization of her outfit in a recent Around Azeroth to heart. "Seeing as my last submission was a tad monochromatic, here's my much more colourful and tasteful PvP set," she writes. Definitely gorgeous, Emanuelle, although the cut of the robe's skirt is a bit unusual. Can you imagine trying to explain that tan line?

Want to see your own screenshot here? Send it to aroundazeroth@wowinsider.com. We strongly prefer full-sized pictures with no UI or names showing. Include "Azeroth" in the subject line to ensure your submission dodges email spam filters; if you'd like to be credited, also include your name, guild and realm.

Around Azeroth: You give us those nice bright colors, you give us the greens of summers originally appeared on WoW Insider on Tue, 23 Apr 2013 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Last Week in WoW: Barrelling toward patch 5.3 edition - Tue, 23 Apr 2013 09:00:00 EST

Happy Tuesday morning, everyone. Patch 5.3 continues to be on the PTR, and the changes keep coming. We still have no actual ETA for when the patch will hit live servers, but it's certainly not slowing down. On the other hand, the live servers are hopping too, with Raid Finder finally opening its doors to all comers, allowing us all to take down the notorious Lei Shen. As always, our intrepid team has been out covering it all.

Downtime today is just a series of rolling restarts at 7 a.m. PDT. The process is expected to take about an hour, which is more than enough time to skim our usual roundup of the last week of news. Read on to see what you may have missed.

Hot news and features

Continue reading Last Week in WoW: Barrelling toward patch 5.3 edition

Last Week in WoW: Barrelling toward patch 5.3 edition originally appeared on WoW Insider on Tue, 23 Apr 2013 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Breakfast Topic: What makes WoW a great game? - Tue, 23 Apr 2013 08:00:00 EST

You'll probably say I'm being paid off by Blizzard or something (I wish I was), that I'm a sell-out and shouldn't be trusted, and should be thrown to the dogs and such, but I love WoW. Of all the games I've played in my life, WoW is the one that's become an obsession. It's become a career even, it's now not just what I do in my spare time, but what I do in my work time, too. And I love it.

I was chatting with my friend Missy, a huge lover of lore, and we were discussing how different our gameplay experiences were. I rush through content, I'm all about the end-game, and getting there was quickly as possible. In scenarios, I get distracted by the killing, I just want to make with the stabby or the zappy or the choppy, and use my character's abilities in the most efficient and intelligent way I can to get the job done. I miss huge chunks of story because I'm just not looking out for it. And Missy plays completely differently, always with an eye on the story, always with an eye on the quest text and the NPC dialog and all the rest. I haven't watched a skippable cutscene in a really long time. And our own lore lovers here at WoW Insider are just the same, I'm sure Sally despairs of me. I know Anne does.

But we all love this game. There's something there for all of us, and for the hardcore raiders, the RPers, the people who never have max-level characters at all, the pet battlers, the people who only have an hour or two every third wednesday, they've all got a place in Azeroth.

And that's why WoW is a great game, in my book. But that's my book. What do you think?

Breakfast Topic: What makes WoW a great game? originally appeared on WoW Insider on Tue, 23 Apr 2013 08:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Should you be playing a monk? - Mon, 22 Apr 2013 20:00:00 EST

World of Warcraft has a character class for every type of player... though you may have to hunt around to find the class that's a perfect fit for you. These days, I've found my perfect fit to be the monk. (Though who's to say that I won't change my mind again in the future.) So if you're in the market for a new character -- whether you're a new player or an old hand -- let's talk about why a monk should be at the top of your to-play list.

Just what is a monk?
Monks are masters of weaponless combat who have learned to harness their chi hurt their enemies or heal their friends. While they fight bare-handed, they can (and should!) equip weapons: they can use fist weapons, one-handed axes, one-handed maces, one-handed swords, polearms, and staves and can dual-wield one-handed weaponry. They use cloth and leather armor and, though monks originated in Pandaria (and you'll need the Mists of Pandaria expansion to play one), the class is open to pandaren, dwarf, human, blood elf, tauren, undead, draenei, gnome, night elf, orc, and troll.

They're a true hybrid class who can tank (brewmaster monks), heal (mistweaver monks), and DPS (windwalker monks). For resources, monks have health, energy (for brewmasters and windwalkers), mana (for mistwalkers), and chi. Chi is unique resource to monks: you have four possible points of it and start combat with zero. Some of your attacks will generate chi while others will use it, meaning monks take careful resource balancing.

Continue reading Should you be playing a monk?

Should you be playing a monk? originally appeared on WoW Insider on Mon, 22 Apr 2013 20:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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