Kupoccino sent us a tip earlier today about a video that's posted over on a German site about WotLK. In the video a level one Warrior walks up the throne of Arthas and purchases a sword from a stone - a sword that appears to be Frostmourne.
The video is a fake, and has graphics elements and game elements, such as the bags, that are indicative of a private server. Additionally Kuoccino points out to me in a later email that the steps are really benches from the Undercity, and that the throne is from the Undercity as well. I'm inclined to agree with him.
Normally I wouldn't post something like this, but it's a good example of how far people are willing to go to try to get a scoop on WotLK. Also, as Mike Schramm pointed out on the podcast this afternoon, now is about the time that we'll start to see more leaked WotLK information. The alpha is going on, and the beta is a few months away - this is prime time for leaks to happen.
Now of course, there is the remotest of remote possibilities that this video is real. If there is even a smidgen of truthiness in here, my hat is off to the person that got this.
If you've got any WotLK screenshots, real or fake, hop on over to our tip line and send away! We're always on the lookout for a good thing! We just reserve the right to laugh and cackle if you send us fakes.
Macro Anatomy: Faerie Fire and Faerie Fire (Feral) - Sat, 26 Apr 2008 18:00:00 EST Welcome to this week's Macro Anatomy! Today we'll be taking look at a simple macro I found for my druid alt, whom I am secretly leveling late at night after studying for finals, when I can't seem to bring myself to play my main. On that note, my apologies for the somewhat lackluster installations of this feature, until finals are done, and after my diving trip to Cozumel, things will be back on track.
Now that you are almost aware of my entire life, let us get down to business. This macro serves to make two spells fit into one button, without button modifiers. To be honest, I had to read the spell description for Faerie Fire and Faerie Fire (Feral) a couple of times before I got it. (I really shouldn't be trying to assimilate non-school information right now, but I love WoW.) These two spells come in handy, I've already used it on a pesky undead rogue, and I wanted to make sure I wasn't leaving Cat Form or Bear Form while using it.
The epic raid AFK - Sat, 26 Apr 2008 17:00:00 EST There are few things more frustrating in the game than a person going AFK in the middle of a fight. Sometimes there are good reasons, and sometimes the reasons are...less than adequate. But no matter what, we all have an epic AFK story that makes us laugh and cry all at the same time.
The ultimate AFK (so far) in my WoW career happened while we were on Illidan last week. Uly, a good Mage in our guild, was standing with the ranged group dpsing Illidan during phase 1. He was a little high on threat, so he switched to his wand. Nothing wrong there.
So he's standing there, wanding away as I'm moving Illidan across the terrace to avoid the fire. It looks like he's doing his job. He get the parasites.
Each week Arcane Brilliance offers a place for Mages everywhere to take a short break from opening portals to Shattrath and just relax and enjoy a thousand words or two about their class. That's right, my robed brethren, nobody's going to ask you to "sheep square" or demand "table plz" around here. Yep, 'round here, all the Fireballs crit, the tank never breaks your Polymorph, and aggro is just a five letter made-up word that doesn't mean anything. So set aside your threat meters and your spell damage trinkets, sit back, and enjoy this brief respite. You can always get back to pulling aggro off the tank later.
Much like life, playing World of Warcraft is a series of choices. Some of these choices (should I jump that flagged Gnome while he's already in combat, or wait till he's done and engage him honorably?) are smaller than others (should I roll Mage, or some other, crappier class?). You choose a class, a race, a hairstyle, a guild, a spec, and whether or not to accept a party invite from that Hunter who has no pet and has decided melee suits him better than attacking from range (psst...always choose "not" on that last one, trust me). One of the most important choices you will make, and one that will effect your entire WoW experience from start to finish, is your choice of professions.
Your choice of a crafting profession will offer you benefits as you level your Mage to 70 and then determine many of your opportunities at end-game. Thankfully, this choice is one you can always undo, although doing so can be costly and wasteful. Join us after the jump for part one of our look at the seven primary crafting professions and what each one has to offer us as Mages throughout our WoW careers.
Slippery stats and spells revealed by Chardev - Sat, 26 Apr 2008 14:00:00 EST Two aspects of my personality come into conflict quite often during my time playing WoW. You see, I love getting the most out of my gear, and pushing every little point of damage I can get out of my equipment. However, I hate doing math in my leisure time. When you really want to get down to min-maxing, you're stuck with that little math part.
Fortunately, there are tools out there to help that out somewhat. The latest tool being Chardev.org, a website that allows you to either build a character from the ground up or import yours from the Armory. Everything from gems to enchants to talents are able to be altered here, and while this isn't the first website to do something like that, it does do something differently. It allows you to see all of your stats, and the breakdown of your spells. Their damage, damage coefficients, casting time after Haste, all of that.
It definitely isn't perfect or a replacement for good math, but it's quality work regardless. The ability to refine your item searches further would help a lot. As it is right now, it just throws you a giant list of what could technically go in that slot, with no way to narrow it down. Still, seeing spell stats and how gear will affect them laid out for you is very cool. Chardev is worth at least a look!
Even if you don't use Omen, it's likely you've seen it or heard about it here on WoW Insider, in WoW itself, or somewhere else in the WoW community. Patch 2.4 and the redesign of WoW's combat log called for a complete rebuild of many mods, and Omen was far and away the highest in demand.
There were certainly some issues with Omen the day 2.4 launched, but the one man army behind the mod worked endlessly to get the addon in working order, while somehow making time for a chat mod, too. I think it's fair to say we know a thing or two about the mods, but what about the modder behind them?
Luckily for all of you, Antiarc(aka Adrine) is open to bribes(not really) so I've managed to sucker him into answering a few questions for us, many of which are taken from you, the readers! We'll go through a series of three categories. The Man, in which we delve into Antiarc's personal and professional life. The Mods, wherein we ask a few questions about his experiences in mod-writing. The Miscellaneous, where we ask Antiarc random questions that hold no bearing on absolutely anything! Hooray! Read on!
Before Olibith created award-winning machinimas, such as I'm Only Sleeping and the Never Stay Tuned series, he was a wee Urban Spaceman. This short music video is just another example of an artist overcoming their earlier obstacles and going on to greatness! You can see the Fraps watermark, there are all sorts of cheesy effects, and rumor has it that he didn't even know what machinima was back then! If you haven't seen Olibith's latest work, Never Stay Tuned 3, you'll be shocked at the difference in quality.
If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.
A while back fellow WoW Insider blogger Adam posted his thoughts on PvP, calling PvE the only real game. He makes excellent, valid points as to why he believes this is so, such as the fact that it is quite impossible to level from 1 to 70 through PvP alone. The game was designed around a PvE-centric environment, and the relatively late additions of the Battlegrounds and Honor system are a testament to that. In those respects, Adam is completely correct.
Of course, many of you took issue with his statements, even prompting him to publish his personal counterpoint on the matter. As an avid PvP player, I found some of what Adam said to be less than savory myself. It has to be noted that Adam has extensive PvE endgame experience, and his opinions come from a raider's perspective. I will concede his first two points -- you cannot progress in World of Warcraft through PvP alone and that PvP was a mere afterthought. On the other hand, Adam's other points don't quite hold as much water.
Well, you have voted, and the votes have been counted. (Note to Michigan and Florida residents: Your votes have not been counted because you tried to move your primary up too early. Sorry.) This blood elf with an undead face, courtesy of Rhodarr of <no way out> on Nera'thor-EU, is the winner of the first Glitchstravaganza. Rhodarr barely squeaked by Gnatt of <Vanquished> on Dath'Remar's glitched graphics card, winning by a plurality of 27.1% to 26.4%. Sorry, Gnatt -- there'll be no recount here. A pat on the back goes to Guydebord of <Suicidal Tendencies> on Gnomeregan, who somehow managed to place below "None" in the voting.
Welcome to the gallery, Rhodarr, and proudly proclaim yourself the victor!
Do you have any unusual World of Warcraft images that are just collecting dust in your screenshots folder? We'd love to see it on Around Azeroth! Sharing your screenshot is as simple as e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org 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. Thanks for participating in Glitchstravaganza, everyone!
My favorite beggar plea is when they ask for "spare" cash. Like there is the concept of extra change jingling in your pocket in-game. My usual answer to any beggar is "Of course not", but when I'm feeling verbose I'll give advice as to where a good place to quest is for his or her level.
The Spousal Unit has been known to happily say that he will give the beggar 10 gold. All the beggar has to do is meet him in front of the bank in 10 minutes. Then 9 minutes later, he logs off. The tenacious ones will actually add him to their Friends List and bug him the next time he's on. He is willing to string them along as long as they are willing to keep trying.
Just like Gold Sellers are only around because people are willing to buy, beggars only keep begging because people are willing to give them money.
Yesterday I asked why beggars beg. Today I want to know, do you give to beggars? If not, what do you say when you turn them down?
Let's face it, World of Warcraft is a PvE game. I know I once stated that PvP is inevitable and that everyone must go through it, but I've since been proven wrong by the rare breed of carebears who have never been flagged for PvP throughout their entire gaming lives. As much as I am loathe to admit it, Blizzard designed the game with PvP as a mere afterthought. I still don't think it's "the only real game" as Adam put it, but I think I'll write up a response to that another day. Despite the prevalence of Arenas and how its shaping the game today, anyone who isn't interested in PvP can very well skip it should she choose to. I said it was integral to the game, but admittedly probably only in my experience because it's my favorite thing to do.
On the other hand, with Patch 2.4, the game has never been more casual than it is now, with more rare and epic items available to more players than ever. PvP has become more casual, too, with a new bunch of PvP quests to add to the Gold-grinder's routine. For a few players, even those who aren't particularly into PvP, the Battlegrounds and World PvP objectives are more enticing, even if only once a day. The Spirits of Auchindoun quest in Terokkar Forest might be the easiest way to earn 12 Gold ever. Because of the changes, I believe that now is the best time for people to try out PvP -- from fresh 70s to longtime carebears.
Finally, some resto Shammy gear! Not only is this sweet helm statted out (yes, I just made that up), but it's named after someone you may have heard of in passing -- that other half of the Lich King.
Name: Shroud of Chieftain Ner'zhul (WoWDB, Wowhead, Thottbot) Type: Epic Mail Head Armor: 902 Abilities:
In order to save space, I'm going to give you the lore behind this helm while I tell you its stats. So Ner'zhul was an old Chieftain/Shaman of the Orcs, and since this is Warcraft, he was powerhungry and it drove him to make deals with demons. Plus his helm had +48 Stamina and +41 Intellect, which actually made it nice for PvP as well.
It also had a Yellow and Meta socket, and a socket bonus of 2 mp5. Ner'zhul didn't exactly knowingly make deals with demons, though -- he did what he thought was right, and aligned with Kil'jaeden, who he thought was actually a helpful "ancient ancestor."
But realizing Kil'jaeden is evil is actually as obvious as the 33 spell haste rating and 13mp5 on this helm, and eventually Ner'zhul did. It was too late, though -- Gul'dan took over, and Ner'zhul only barely saved the Frostwolf Orcs from drinking Mannoroth's blood.
Kil'jaeden wasn't thrilled with that, obviously, and stuck Ner'zhul in the Frozen Throne as the Lich King, until a young man named Arthas Menethil came along, shattered the Frozen Throne, and combined his bad self with Ner'zhul's in order to become a crazy powerful being (with lots of Wrath, which we'll see sooner or later).
And oh yeah, the helm's got 134 healing and 45 spell damage on it. Ner'zhul was originally an Orc Chieftain and resto Shaman, so this helm came from back when he was still supposedly a good guy. But interestingly enough, he still kind of is -- both he and Arthas slaughtered a lot of people thinking they were doing the right thing, and both he and Arthas were corrupted by the deals they made for power. Maybe they belong in that Frozen Throne together.
How to Get It: This is an interesting piece of loot that supposedly comes from the Sunwell. As of this writing, it hasn't been in player hands yet, but it actually comes from another helm, the Cowl of Gul'dan, which reportedly drops from Kil'jaeden. Since Killy Jay hasn't been killed yet, we're not sure about this, but this is what an "ancient ancestor" told us.
Blizzard is trying something new with the Sunwell Loot -- if you don't like the loot you get or want to switch it out for another piece of gear, you can bring the old helm to a Transmuter, along with a Sunmote (that can be obtained from trash inside Sunwell Plateau), and they'll transmute the helm for you. So get the Cowl of Gul'dan (drop rate unknown), add a Sunmote in there, take it to the Transmuter, and voila, you've got (what's probably a replication of) the Shroud of Chieftain Ner'hzul. Cake, right?
Getting Rid of It: Oh, you won't, not for a while anyway. All of the non-raiders will be switching out their casual epics for greens at level 71, but a helm like this you'll hold on to for a while. It does disenchant into a Void Crystal, though -- at least we assume it does. The ancient ancestor was unclear about that one.
Altaholism is something we've all heard of, talked about and possibly suffered from. I have struggled with this as long as I've played World of Warcraft. I use a variety of addons, as you can well imagine, to enhance my game play. Some of these addons provide information about my alts, although not across servers and factions. The information I am typically concerned with is rest bonus, gold and recipes. I usually use the Armory to check my alt's gear and reputation, or God forbid I relog to the character in question to check something.
Enter Altaholic, an addon I have recently started using to keep track of just about every detail about my alts. Developer Thaoky tipped us off to his addon, and I thought I'd give it a test drive. I'm not going to lie, I was a little doubtful about the usefulness of this one, but I have changed my mind. Altaholic looks akin to Auctioneer (and therefore the default AH interface) to allow the player to navigate different information regarding alts. Some of my addons duplicate features of this addon, but this package brings much more to the table. It's an Ace addon, and the developer seems to be very proactive about the future of this one. One warning, however, this addon will total up your /played time, which may cause you to ask serious questions about the direction fo your life.
Come back after the break for a look at Altaholic.
Well Fed Buff serves up tasty dishes to boost your HP, stats and appetite - with that special WoW twist, of course.
My wife grimaces whenever I stop my channel surfing to watch Giada de Laurentiis on Everyday Italian. She can't complain, though, since I do the cooking at home and I use, ahem, culinary education as my excuse for watching the show. Today on Well Fed Buff, I'll do my own celebrity chef impression and continue my trend of outlining perfectly simple dishes that any lazy gamer can whip up at home without messing it up too much. Just like fried bananas, of course, it's pretty hard to go wrong with an omelet.
We're not just talking about any omelet, though, mind you. It's a Monster Omelet! In-game Monster Omelets require a Giant Egg and a couple of Soothing Spices, which really aren't difficult to put together. Of course, the key ingredient is a Giant Egg, which isn't too easy to come by but some delis and well-stocked grocers might have ostrich eggs. One supermarket in Manila fortunately had one in stock, and it retailed for about $14.
PvP was very much on readers' minds this week: Blizzard's balance of focus on PvP vs. PvE content, new Arena gear requirements, the e-sport aspirations of WoW's PvP system ... We bring you a sampling of those, as well as plenty of other tidbits that readers poked at over the last week: meanie players who kill ogres, loot drama, even roleplaying coverage.
As always, be sure to dive into the comments area and add your own thoughts - unlike your mama, we like us some hot, fresh backtalk.
We'll check our email inbox as well -- if you'd like to send us a note (or a joke), you can do so at email@example.com. And we'll be on IRC as usual: in the #wowradio channel at irc.mmoirc.com (or you can just chat directly from WoW Radio's webpage).
Should be a good one. See you there: tomorrow afternoon at 3:30pm EST over on WoW Radio, it's the WoW Insider Show live on your PC.
Give Gnomer back to the Gnomes - Fri, 25 Apr 2008 14:00:00 EST I've heard this idea many times before, but I don't know that we've ever officially covered it here on the site: there is a fairly large movement in the player base, especially among the shorter folks, to have Blizzard continue the Gnomeregan story line -- and give Gnomer back to the Gnomes. Gnomer is pretty much the most hated of all the instances (well, Uldaman might barely overtake it in some circles), and as happy as the Gnomes are in Ironforge, a lot of the pint-sized ankle-pokers would like to have their city back.
Unfortunately, Blizzard has given the idea short shrift (ha!) to say the least -- while there are lots of rumored expansion plans, even beyond Wrath of the Lich King, it's mostly the Maelstrom and the Emerald Dream; nothing about the Leper Gnomes in Gnomer. You'd think they wouldn't be that hard to clear out (lower level groups regularly make short work of them -- ha!), although radiation is tough to fight off. Even the best Gnomish scientists seem to hold the belief they'll be able return to Gnomer, so it must be possible, right?
But to make a long story short (ha! OK I'll stop), retaking Gnomeregan just isn't on Blizzard's priority list. The city might work great as a portal hub, or even a new setting for a BG or Arena, but as it is right now, Gnomeregan is staying in the hands of the Lepers and the Troggs.
The Care and Feeding of Warriors knew that there would be discussion of whether or not warriors are broken, and so decided to provide picture evidence that at least one warrior is broken indeed! Matthew Rossi apologizes for that pun. Really, he couldn't be expected to resist it, now could he? Look, mob violence never solved anything.
I have in the past written about what's not broken in the warrior class. So you might think that a column entitled "Are warriors underpowered?" would be easily answered with a no, and then we could move on.
And so it is. See you next week!
Oh, right. I still have to write a column. Also, to be fair, the answer is more complicated than no, although it ultimately works out to a no by means of averages. Warriors in the whole are not underpowered or broken, but they have some issues. Some aspects that have always annoyed me. It's too bad I don't have a weekly column about warriors so I can talk about that, isn't it?
In what could be the biggest change in 2.4.2, Hunters are getting a pretty generous buff to the spell Scare Beast. Not only is the range ballooning from 10 yards to 30 yards, but it will have an instant cast time as well. Well it does have limited application in PvE, this will be huge in PvP, for one simple reason: It will work on Druids in forms.