Kael'thas in two places at once - Thu, 27 Mar 2008 20:00:00 EST This thread over on the forums starts off a little silly (it's a complaint about Kael'thas being both in Tempest Keep and Magisters' Terrace at the same time), but later on gets into some really interesting commentary and thinking about just how the lore and story in this game works. Obviously, there are no problems with having Kael in two places at once (as Bornakk says with an epic burn, a character can be alive on page 1 and dead on page 10 at the same time), but it's interesting that that's not always what happens in the game. Griftah, for example, was never in two places at once, and neither was Hemet Nesingwary -- both of those characters had progressive lore storylines. But Kael, like Thrall, has a storyline that evolves as a character moves forward in their own storyline, and so Blizzard has placed him in two different places at once, and asked players to move their own characters to see the storyline in order.
Interesting stuff. Scuzz makes a particularly interesting point in the thread -- the World of Warcraft really does revolve around player characters, not NPCs. If you discover through quests that Onyxia is actually pretending to be a woman in Stormwind, all of the NPCs your character meets will be shocked. It's a sign of Blizzard's talent at game creation that something can be both known by most players and discovered by one player almost every single day.
Of course there's no problem with Kael being in two places -- I would rather have my character move through a changing world than have Blizzard worry about making sure "reality" was kept correctly. But it's an interesting line being walked very well -- if you do the two instances in order, you get a much better story than if we were simply fighting a generic third boss in Magisters' Terrace.
On the forums, hunters are not seeing much love from the non-hunter crowd, but I suppose that is to be expected. It is important to note however, that our mana efficiency is an intended attribute of our class. We are useful, not solely, but arguably primarily, because we can provide sustainable, long-term DPS. No, we don't crit like mages. In a boss fight though, we can keep going after mages short out.
Why are hunters all of a sudden having issues with mana? There are a few theories floating around, but we have yet to be graced with a blue response. Take the jump to learn more about why this might be happening.
Everyone that has downloaded Omen 2 has noticed that there are some... issues. The author is aware of most of these, so fixes are on the way, but there's only so many hours in a day. Bugs and issues can crop up in strange places though, so it never hurts to report them. There are some minor things you can do yourself to make sure things work smoothly and be confident the problem isn't on your end, so take a look behind the jump for some tips.
Did you win? - Thu, 27 Mar 2008 18:00:00 EST Probably not. But if you did guess March 25th as the date patch 2.4 was released you might have an email from our own Elizabeth Harper in your inbox in the next few days. So how did you all get to guess March 25th as the magical date?
Some of you might have just pulled the date out of a hat. I can't really blame you if you did, since Blizzard has been notorious for releasing things "when they're ready." WoWWiki even has a page for the often-quoted blue response to people asking when the patch will be released: "soon."
Of course, if you took my route, you would have hunkered down and done some good old math and figured out that the trend was leading towards a March 25th release date. I was, ahem, right. /dance /cheer /drinkaglassofcelebratorywine
Now of course the real test of any mathematical prediction is to see if it holds up over time. When the next patch is announced (if there is one), we'll take another mathematical look at the numbers and try to predict when that patch will go live.
All in all, it was quite a fun little contest. Many thanks to the over 900 of you who entered. Check your mailboxes, you might have won!
For those wondering, the image is the "I Win" button they'll be putting in patch 2.5.We know this is going to happen because of all the nerfs in 2.4... (I'm kidding, but flame away.)
When making this decision, lots of things have to be considered. MT is out no matter what, as not only do many things in game use it as an abbreviation (main tank, mistell, Montana -- ok maybe that last one is a stretch), but it also leads us to confusion with the other "MT" instance in the game: Mana Tombs. For that reason, MaT is also out, though MagT has found a lot of foothold with many players, as has MgT. I originally thought MT would work well (since Mana Tombs is actually "Mana-Tombs," and would therefore be abbreviated M-T), but I haven't see that too much so far.
But almost surprisingly, the thing I've seen most players using is something that I originally mentioned way back as just a joke. Yes, most players I've seen are actually describing the instance as MrT. Not that that makes any more sense, but it does kind of provide a nice homage to a Mohawked WoW hero.
So in our (un)official capacity as WoW Insider, one of the 50 most influential blogs on the net, we're declaring the winner: from now on, the new Sunwell 5man will be known as "MrT." And we pity the fool who doesn't agree.
Haven't been to MrT yet (or MagT, or MgT, or whatever you decide to call it)? We've got a Kalecgos-sized roundup of info on the brand new five-man, including a step-by-step walkthrough of what's in there and how to kill it.
We can't be exactly sure what the Taunka's role will be. The last paragraph in the update says that we'll soon recognize their "colossal hearts and unshakeable resolve." To me, this sounds like a possible faction we'll be grinding rep for. Perhaps something like the Orgri'la faction, where at first the Orges are hostile, and then they are friendly.
An interesting comment on WoWWiki suggest that Chieftain Ashtotem, known from a screenshot of the Howling Fjord in Northrend, might be a Taunka. What do you think? Personally, I think it's possible. The yellow name also lends credence to the theory that this might be a reputation faction.
"Someone's been breaking the first two rules of Mote Club."
It can be said, quite accurately, that Engineering is not a merchant's craft. Many Engineers of all ratings bemoan the fact that their devices are not easily marketed. What we can make tends to require a rating in Engineering to operate, or it is bound to its maker on creation, or both. This tends to mean our prospective customers would, by necessity, likely be able to produce themselves what we might offer them for sale. To many an Engineer, this has been a burr in the cogs for years. To many other Engineers, however, it represents merely a challenge.
There are ways and means to make money as an Engineer, though not so much as those high and mighty Enchanters, with their "75 gold for that one, plus mats" profession. One such way is through mote extraction, or the science of Motectomization. Due to a recent settlement with the Engineering Student's Association, that word will not be used again within this lecture. The mote extractor, especially as combined with other facets of our profession, can prove quite a reliable resource, and quite a profitable one at that. Herein we will discuss the ways of learning the Mote Extractor, and where to employ it for the most lucrative results.
Totem Talk: Chain Lightning in your faces - Thu, 27 Mar 2008 15:30:00 EST Totem Talk takes another week to talk about PvP on a shaman in the wake of 2.4 going live. Matthew Rossi hasn't had as much of a chance to play with the changes to talents but what he has been able to do, he now presents to you in a post about post patch PvP. Pickled peppers.
Last week we talked PvP. This week I respecced to an elemental and enhancement set of builds with more PvP focused talents (basically the 40/0/21 elemental/resto build and a variant enhancement build) based on feedback from the comments. I filled out the gaps in my elemental set with the new Seer's Ringmail set, which at least made it easier to experiment with the builds. A decent (if not outstanding) elemental, restoration or enhancement PvP set is now within reach of the new 70, after a few Auchindoun or Caverns of Time instance runs to get honored with Lower City and Keepers of Time.
After each respec I went and ran Alterac Valley, Arathi Basin, and begged a guildmate to run a 2x2 Arena match with me. The battlegrounds were easy enough to do, everyone's excited about the new AV and wants marks for the honor turn in, but getting people to form an arena team with me for the purposes of me trying out new specs to write about in this article proved difficult and so I can only report about how I did as an elemental shaman in 2x2.
I died, but man, I surprised the heck out of that rogue first. (He then died when my teammate, a mage, hit him after I did.) Even with my non-epic gear, a trinket enhanced instant cast chain lightning crit did quite a nice amount of damage to the other team, and my partner managed to mop up pretty effectively with a counterspell on their druid followed by massive nuking on the rogue. I died, as I said (people don't like instant cast chain lightning crits, who knew?) and the druid ultimately outlasted our mage, but it was worth it. I'd die like that again. I have to admit, I think this build would have worked a lot better for a bigger team but I was pressed for time and had to go to war with the army I had.
This week on Scattered Shots, David provides a break in the rushing waves of Patch 2.4 news to wax philosophical about his love of being a hunter. To be perfectly honest, he hasn't had time to even try out the new patch yet, but he's really looking forward to waxing on and off about the patch at some point as well.
They say that being a hunter is WoW on easy mode, but in reality, the "easy mode" style of hunting is only the beginning of what a hunter can do. Sadly many hunters never really arise out of that stage - easy hunting can become like a rut in which one may not even realize that there is another way to do things. A player can rise out of this rut, however, either through an enterprising nature, or through acquaintance with a good hunter role-model. However one rises to it, the opportunity is there for hunters to do all kinds of things amazing things, mostly at the same time.
In fact, you could say that a fundamental mechanic of the hunter class, probably the mechanic I love most in the entire game, is that of controlling multiple characters at once: the hunter and the pet. You have the most control over your hunter character, obviously, and the pet functions as something like a yo-yo which is attached to the hunter. You can point the pet in the direction of an enemy to attack, or you can recall it to wherever you are, but you can't tell it, for instance, to kite an enemy around in circles in the same way you yourself could.
The limitations inherent in the abilities of the hunter and the pet, as well as the synergy between them, reminds me a bit of chess. Managing both the pet and the hunter to greatest effectiveness in different situations means you have to keep more than one thing in mind at all times. When you play most other classes, you can just pay attention to them and what they're doing, but being a good hunter requires you to be more aware of what's going on around you, just like chess requires you to keep track of the whole board, not just the little portion of it where the most action is happening.
Patch 2.4 without the expansion - Thu, 27 Mar 2008 14:30:00 EST Reader Sebastian wrote in to us with an interesting question: what good is patch 2.4 if you don't have the Burning Crusade expansion yet? He has a lower level character that hasn't hit 70 yet (he's on level 46), and wants to know exactly what 2.4 is doing for him. From what we can tell, not much.
You'll still get some of the good interface updates -- so you'll get the buffs to Inspect, the combat log improvements, and all of the other additions Blizzard has made to the UI. All of the talents you have by 46 that got changes will change, too, and of course the improvements to Warsong Gulch are great for characters of almost any level (since almost everyone can go in there). And let's not forget the biggest change this patch: Old Blanchy's Feed Pouch is now an 8 slotter. That's huge.
But no, until you hit level 70, the new daily quests and the Sunwell Instances and the new badge loot won't matter much to you at all. But the good news is that the expansion is only $30, and sometimes even cheaper than that. The weather's getting nice outside, so go mow a few lawns this weekend, and then you'll be able to level up and join us all in the land of the Blood Elves where pretty much everyone has gone mad with magical power. Trust me -- it's more fun than it sounds.
Each week, Robin Torres writes WoW, Casually for the player who has 2 hours or less to play at a time.
Almost every column, I talk about Welfare Epics since they are specifically designed for casuals to get their purplez on and I just assume that you all know what I'm talking about. But Dave recently sent in a question asking what they are and I realized that if I didn't write for WoW Insider, I probably wouldn't know either.
Though some people say they heard the phrase before this, the first time I heard it was at BlizzCon. Jeff Kaplan, aka Tigole, started off the Dungeons and Raids panel by saying that the panel wasn't for people with their Welfare Epics, but for people who actually earn them. Now, I think he was partially just being funny, but I also think he was speaking up for the Raiders who are upset that all of the work they put into conquering the PvE endgame content is for naught when any casual player can pick up purples that are equal to or better than gear that drops off endgame bosses.
Raid Rx is designed to encapsulate and cure the shock and horror that is 25-man raid healing. Ok, so it's mostly horror... Anyways, if you're a big fan of X-TREME Whack-A-Mole (or are being forced into it against your will) this is the column for you. I need a T-Shirt that says "I came, I saw, I forgot to stand inside the circle and got locked out of the Kale Fight." /bonk
So some of my diehard fans (hi mom!) might notice that this week I've deviated from my normal Tuesday posting to bring you all the latest healer gossip... err... tips from the newest 25-man raid scene. My goal is to do a compilation of all the major raiding changes reported since the patch went live. After that I'll get into the things I learned the hard way last night on Kalecgos. Join me after the break!
Well Fed Buff serves up tasty dishes to boost your HP, stats and appetite - with that special WoW twist, of course.
Skinners will recognize Shadowmoon Valley's Oronok Torn-heart as that cool guy by all the boars who'll buy your greys, sell you water, repair your gear and even give you a hefty heal when your hit points run low. Questers will recognize Oronok as "the tuber guy." Today's Well Fed Buff combines both convenience and tubers in a dish that's easy, tasty and provides a hefty +vitamin buff.
This is one of those dishes that turns out exponentially more delicious than the amount of time you spent on it deserves. If you can chop a few potatoes and shake stuff around in a bag, you can cook these tubers. It's like the quest: kinda easy, kinda cheesy and moves you along down the road with a nice buff at the end!
(This video contains some heavy language, but only to keep in stride with the show that it is parodying, Trailer Park Boys. You've been warned.)
Trailer Park Boys fame has reached critical mass. Not only is the homegrown, low-budget mockumentary-style taking over the globe in real life, now wowstudios (Joe Ashe) has parodied it in World of Warcraft.
While I thought that he captured the feel of the series in his shots, I do have some complaints. I'm not sure why he showed voices transmitting in WoW, but it appears sloppy. In addition, I don't know if he was attempting focal depth, but the backgrounds just end up looking blurry. Criticism aside, I thought World of Trailer Park Boys was a funny and cute parody.
Having had a chance both on the live and test servers to do the Shattered Sun Offensive dailies, I think I can safely say that Blizzard has thoroughly outdone themselves. There's variety, there's travel (instead of staying in the same small area all the time), there's excitement, there's good loot, there's all kinds of varied quests that make me think that I may never go back to Ogri'la or Skettis ever again unless I really need something from the vendors. There's still things that could be slightly better, but for the most part, Blizzard has shown that they've taken valuable lessons from previous content and stepped up their design for patch 2.4.
It looks like just about everyone's excited about patch 2.4. In fact, it looks like someone's a little too excited here. Yes, that's the tentacle of the old god C'thun, devouring the map of Quel'danas in the center of Shattrath City. Frequent tipster Enaress summons his squiggly friend, who he acquired only last week, into various places to scare people.
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. And please, no more sunsets. Black hole sun, won't you come and wash away the pain?
In their quest for world domination, Blizzard has announced plans to develop a Spanish version of World of Warcraft for Latin America.The new version will have the same stellar twenty-four hour customer service currently available to WoW players.
The announcement stated that "The Latin American localization will be based on the existing European Spanish version but will feature entirely re-recorded in-game speech."The new version of the game is slated to be released soon, and will be available to Spanish-Speaking players in the and as well as in Latin America.
Blizzard is making arrangements for language packs and transfers for existing Spanish-speaking players once the new version is released.You now have the option to read the official forums in Spanish or in English. I wonder if one of the new dances in Wrath of the Lich King will be the Cha Cha.
This is a really neat feature. My friends and I often times play "guess the gear" on the Horde toons we pass during our PvE adventures. We solve our arguments by looking them up in the armory, but now we'll just be able to right click on the Horde character's portrait and choose "Inspect." Pretty nifty.
Now... the real question becomes, where could this lead? For a long time players have been wondering if one day we'll be able to group across factions. Blizzard has obviously been leaning towards cross faction interaction and friendly support for a while now. We had the AQ gates opening, the recent goings on in the Isle of Quel'Danas, and lots of quests where you have to help out a member of the opposing faction.
For those of you who do not frequent the forums, you might not know that since patch 2.4, there has been a Tauren outcry.
It seems that cows everywhere are logging in to find that their weapons are roughly 50% smaller than they were previously. Should you take your weapon out to get a better look at it, you'll get to watch it grow back to pre-patch size.
Unfortunately, this is not a bug. Hortus has confirmed that it was an intentional change because certain weapons would clip the ground while sheathed.
While the Tauren have been getting some support on the forums, some players seem unsure of why this is such a big issue. Let's take a deeper look into why players are upset, including the fact that cows will seemingly be the brunt of even more jokes. Not innocent jokes either; not like "steak! It's what's for dinner!"