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Getting all the Well Read books - Sat, 29 Nov 2008 19:00:00 EST
It's the weekend after Thanksgiving, the family has all left, there's nothing but turkey leftovers to eat, and you hit level 80 last week, and you're just waiting for your guild to level up so you can start the endgame. What is there to do on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon? Find all of the Well Read books -- WoWWiki has the guide I've been looking for ever since I first got excited about this achievement. I count 43 in total, and they've got a list of all the books you need and where you can find them for reading.

The vast majority of the books can be found in Scholomance and the Scarlet Monastery, so a run through both of those instances (you can easily solo both at 80) will get you many of the books you need. From there it's time to travel the world -- Brill, Southshore, the Eastvale Logging Camp, Duskwood, and Booty Bay, and a few other places, depending on your faction (Alliance seems to have a little bit of an advantage there, as Stormwind and Orgrimmar have nice libraries. There are a few good books in Undercity, but the Orcs and Tauren aren't much for book learning, apparently).

Seems totally doable in a quick afternoon, and while you won't really get anything but the 10 achievement points (and probably a nice chance to pick up some more of the old Azeroth explorer achievement), why else would you do this, other than to brag about it. Whenever anyone argues that you don't know your Azeroth lore, you can just point them to your Armory page, and tell them to check the part about you being Well Read.

Getting all the Well Read books originally appeared on WoW Insider on Sat, 29 Nov 2008 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Ghostcrawler: Wrath's difficulty is where we want it - Sat, 29 Nov 2008 17:00:00 EST
One of the biggest concerns we've heard from players since the expansion launched is that everything is too easy -- not only did the hardcore raiders burn down the PvE endgame content in a matter of days, but upgrades aren't really what they used to be, and anyone with some solid gear that blow through most of the instances without too much trouble. Which begs the question: is Wrath too easy?

No, according to our buddy Ghostcrawler. He says that Blizzard's goal this time around was to avoid the Karazhan mistake from the last expansion, where players butted their heads up against tougher content in the early endgame. GC says that Blizzard certainly knows how to make tougher content, but they'd rather everyone got a turn this time around.

The only question I have left is why they didn't include it all in the same release -- Blizzard seems to be saying that harder content is on the way, but wouldn't it be more prudent to have both easy and hard content in at the same time? As a casual player, I'm thrilled to hear that the endgame is easier -- I'll get to see more of it. But we've got two versions of each endgame instance now -- do they both have to be easy enough to conquer in a few days?

Ghostcrawler: Wrath's difficulty is where we want it originally appeared on WoW Insider on Sat, 29 Nov 2008 17:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Insider Trader: Gather in Northrend - Sat, 29 Nov 2008 16:30:00 EST


Insider Trader is your inside line on making, selling, buying and using player-made products.

As more of the player base steps into Northrend, the demand for goods and services rises. Craftspeople are especially concerned with developing their skills, and for this to be possible, there needs to be a decent supply of gathered raw materials available.

This is where you gatherers will shine. Of course, you will have to level your skills as well, and this week's edition of Insider Trader will have you maximized and making cash in no time.

Continue reading Insider Trader: Gather in Northrend

Insider Trader: Gather in Northrend originally appeared on WoW Insider on Sat, 29 Nov 2008 16:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Free character migration for EU realms - Sat, 29 Nov 2008 16:00:00 EST


We're just now coming out of our Thanksgiving turkey-induced haze here at WoW Insider, so if you've seen this already, forgive us, but Blizzard announced late last week that there's relief on the way for EU characters tied up by queues -- they've got a whole mess of free migrations in the mix. We've got the whole list of transfers after the break as well.

Argent Dawn appears to be in the worst shape, as Blizzard is sending players from that realm onto three different realms. Magtheridon seems to be the least busy -- all they're transferring off there is the Horde-side players. They're also transferring players off of a few different realms to the newly-created one, Chamber of Aspects, so if you're looking for a new start, there you go.

These migrations are going until December 2nd, so now's your chance, EU players, if you're on the selected realms and have been waiting to jump ship.

Continue reading Free character migration for EU realms

Free character migration for EU realms originally appeared on WoW Insider on Sat, 29 Nov 2008 16:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The Queue: Easy heroics and reverse DPS - Sat, 29 Nov 2008 15:00:00 EST


Welcome back to The Queue, WoW Insider's daily Q&A column where the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft.

Another day, another Q&A! Now, without delay, let's get to the questions.

Ven asked...

In looking at badge rewards, a couple guildies and I noticed that there are more rewards and item types available for 25-man badges than for 10-man badges. Is this intended? Are the heroic and 10-man level badges relegated to stacking endlessly once you have the two or three pieces of gear you need from them? Or is Blizz planning on adding more gear soon? Compared to BC badge gear, there is very little available.

Continue reading The Queue: Easy heroics and reverse DPS

The Queue: Easy heroics and reverse DPS originally appeared on WoW Insider on Sat, 29 Nov 2008 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Arcane Brilliance: Wrath reputation rewards for Mages, part 2 - Sat, 29 Nov 2008 14:00:00 EST



Each week Arcane Brilliance cooks up a feast for Mages everywhere, just like your mom does. Well...maybe your mom cooks for Druids--I don't know--but my mom always cooked for Mages. Especially at this special time of year, she wanted her little Mages to eat well and give thanks for the bounty they had been given. She taught us to always be grateful for Pyroblast, and Polymorph, but most of all, for Mirror Image. Oh, and she also taught us to kill Warlocks, but that's a whole other story.

So I assume that you're all about sick of leftover turkey at this point (at least, those of you who happen to live in America, I guess), and are ready for a heaping helping of something...Magier. Fear not, for Arcane Brilliance is here to serve a steaming pile of Mage directly to you. If you top it with enough gravy, it tastes pretty good.

Last week we went over some of the new Wrath factions and the rewards they offer for Mages. If you missed that first part, you can find it here. As quite a few of you pointed out in the comments, the stuff from those factions was a bit...underwhelming. Fear not, fellow Mages, the best is yet to come. This week, we'll hit the rest of the new expansion's reputation rewards and highlight those that you'll want to start grinding for now, if you haven't already started.

Continue reading Arcane Brilliance: Wrath reputation rewards for Mages, part 2

Arcane Brilliance: Wrath reputation rewards for Mages, part 2 originally appeared on WoW Insider on Sat, 29 Nov 2008 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Ready Check: Guide to Naxxramas (Arachnid Quarter) - Sat, 29 Nov 2008 13:00:00 EST



Ready Check is a weekly column focusing on successful raiding for the serious raider. Hardcore or casual, ZA or Sunwell Plateau, everyone can get in on the action and down some bosses. This week, we look at the first few bosses in Naxxramas.

Today we'll be looking at a blast from the past, revisiting Naxxramas and providing details on the boss encounters that await those brave enough to enter the dread citadel. For those of you who haven't had a chance to look inside the all-new Naxx, here's your spoiler warning: look away now if you don't want to hear about what's in store.

This week's article examines the Arachnid Quarter, and we'll be visiting the other quarters in upcoming articles. We'll look at each boss on both normal and heroic modes, pointing out the differences (beyond HP increases). Generally, if you've defeated the boss on normal mode, there are only minor changes to adapt to on heroic mode (and vice versa).

Continue reading Ready Check: Guide to Naxxramas (Arachnid Quarter)

Ready Check: Guide to Naxxramas (Arachnid Quarter) originally appeared on WoW Insider on Sat, 29 Nov 2008 13:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Five old world vanity pets you may have missed - Sat, 29 Nov 2008 12:00:00 EST
It's a good time to be a pet collector. We're getting recognition, cool toys for our pets, and even an achievement series especially for us. If you're new to the world of pet collecting, or have just dabbled in it so far though, you may be struggling a bit to get those last few pets for the achievement. In the spirit of helping out my fellow pet enthusiasts, here's a few rarer or lesser known old world pets that you might have overlooked, especially if you started the game after Burning Crusade.

Continue reading Five old world vanity pets you may have missed

Five old world vanity pets you may have missed originally appeared on WoW Insider on Sat, 29 Nov 2008 12:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Around Azeroth: Freefalling - Sat, 29 Nov 2008 10:00:00 EST


When King Mrgl-Mrgl asked Faelthas of Bael'Gun to don a murloc suit and kill the Winterfin murloc leader under the pretext of surrender, he forgot to give Faelthas one vital piece of information. In a related matter, the first test of the Winterfin Caverns trebuchet was a smashing success.

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 aroundazeroth@wowinsider.com with a copy of your shot and a brief explanation of the scene. You could be featured here next!

Remember to include your player name, server and/or guild if you want it mentioned. Please include the word "Azeroth" in your post so it does not get swept into the spam bin. We strongly prefer full screen shots without the UI showing -- use alt-Z to remove it. Please, no more battleground scoreboards, "mounted mounts", or pictures of the Ninja Turtles in Dalaran.

Around Azeroth: Freefalling originally appeared on WoW Insider on Sat, 29 Nov 2008 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Breakfast Topic: What's your first level 80 goal? - Sat, 29 Nov 2008 08:00:00 EST
For some people, the game changes a lot at level 80. A whole lot of new opportunities open up. New reputations to work on, new instances to check out, new raids to explore and beat, items to chase that you know you won't replace in a day or two. For others, it doesn't really change anything. You pick up your new level 80 spells and abilities and you go right back where you left off, questing in some zone.

Personally, I'm more like that first type. I quest hard until top level, then take a break from it while I work on other things. I quested through Storm Peaks in the Wrath beta, but I haven't done it on live yet. I hit level 80 in Icecrown and haven't done much questing since then, I've mostly been running raids and heroics, finally replacing my level 70 gear. My first goal, though? I wanted the Reins of the Red Drake.

Continue reading Breakfast Topic: What's your first level 80 goal?

Breakfast Topic: What's your first level 80 goal? originally appeared on WoW Insider on Sat, 29 Nov 2008 08:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Phat Loot Phriday: Oracle Talisman of Ablution - Fri, 28 Nov 2008 17:00:00 EST


We continue our spotlight on some leveling gear for you to hunt down as you make your way up to 80 with this rep trinket you should start working on right now.

Name: Oracle Talisman of Ablution (Wowhead, Thottbot, Armory)
Type: Epic Trinket
Damage/Speed: N/A
Abilities:
  • Improves crit strike rating by 71.
  • Restores mana, energy, rage, or runic power when you kill a target that grants honor or XP. That proc look familiar? It should -- it was on the Power-infused Mushroom that probably helped you out right around Zangarmarsh the last expansion. Pretty helpful for leveling -- it's helpful in PvP too, obviously, but the XP add makes this helpful for leveling as well.

Continue reading Phat Loot Phriday: Oracle Talisman of Ablution

Phat Loot Phriday: Oracle Talisman of Ablution originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 28 Nov 2008 17:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The Care and Feeding of Warriors: To Arms - Fri, 28 Nov 2008 14:00:00 EST
The endless respeccing continues. Oh, dual specs, why won't you arrive? Why?

Last week we talked about protection, which I said (and stand by) was the the best leveling spec in the game for warriors, being fast, fun and powerful. A lot of people took umbrage, saying that I was ignoring how strong Arms was as a leveling spec. I'm not going to take back my statement about prot... it's a wonderful, versatile, almost unkillable leveling spec that can do a lot of damage to groups and takes a beating and a half. I'm in love with how Blizzard has revamped the spec, making it strong for solo as well as tanking. But fair is fair, and since I have plenty of warriors, it's not like respeccing one to arms and testing it out is going to kill me.

Well, arms partisans, I admit it. The spec may have been overshadowed by the sheer coolness factor of a TG build, but in terms of power and effectiveness grinding your way through mobs to get your quests done, it's a solid spec. It's so solid that I even respecced my 80 warrior for the holiday weekend and picked up an Argent Skeleton Crusher to replace my De-Raged Waraxe. What it lacks in prot's pure refusal to die it gains in the excellent, underrated (by me) spectacle of unleashing a bladestorm in the middle of a three mob pull. I'm now eyeing that titansteel I have in the bank and mulling over the merits of making myself a Destroyer.

A caveat: if you do not like watching for procs, you won't like the new arms. I leveled back in vanilla WoW as an arms warrior when MS was the top of the tree and you could raid tank in the spec. It still bears the stamp of that time (and MS is still the heart of the tree) but you'll find overpower and execute have moved up to be equal damage dealing instants once they proper talents allow their use.

Continue reading The Care and Feeding of Warriors: To Arms

The Care and Feeding of Warriors: To Arms originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 28 Nov 2008 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WotLK breaks internal records at EB Games - Fri, 28 Nov 2008 13:00:00 EST


One of our secret correspondents inside an EB Games store forwarded us this picture of an internal email sent out to the videogame retail company, saying that not only was the week of WotLK's launch the biggest sales week of the year, but it was the biggest week ever outside of last year's Christmas sales, and the biggest launch the chain has ever had. Additionally, at EB Games, Wrath was the highest presale ever, the highest single-format (which means PC/Mac only) week one sales (in just two days), and the highest day one sales of any game ever, multiformat or otherwise.

Pretty incredible. EB Games isn't a small company by any means, and while we knew Wrath was big, it looks like Blizzard's second WoW expansion smashed pretty much every sequel it could in the chain, even toppling some of the console gaming records. Anyone that claimed World of Warcraft had peaked with Burning Crusade should be looking pretty foolish at this point.

We'll have to see where Blizzard goes from here -- there's no doubt that one reason Wrath was so popular out of the gate was that it returned to the "core" of Warcraft III: the story of Arthas and the Scourge. Can Blizzard replicate that with another expansion, no matter what the setting?

WotLK breaks internal records at EB Games originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 28 Nov 2008 13:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WoW Moviewatch: Darkness II - Fri, 28 Nov 2008 12:00:00 EST



There's a lot going on in Darkness II by Erunno. It's a longer, story driven piece. According to the author, this installment is a continuation of the first Darkness. (Thus, "II".)

The animation is ample and sufficient for the story-driven purpose of the machinima. While one can always look for more graphic enhancements, sometimes that flash and funk can actually detract from the story that's being told. I think Erunno hit a pretty sweet spot with "Darkness II," by providing a little embellishment (via Model Viewer), but without spending all of his time and energy and on the special effects.

I could have used a slightly faster pacing, personally, but that's entirely a matter of my own preference. Some of the dialogue felt a little forced to me, but that was rare. Overall, "Darkness II" is just a fairly high end piece, which I'd recommend checking out.

If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

Previously on Moviewatch ...

WoW Moviewatch: Darkness II originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 28 Nov 2008 12:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The Queue: Death Knights in the arena and other things - Fri, 28 Nov 2008 11:00:00 EST


Welcome back to The Queue, WoW Insider's daily Q&A column where the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft.

Hey, welcome back! How was your Thanksgiving, my American pals? Did you sit around and laugh at Europeans like I did? You did? Great! High five! No, I'm just kidding, I love all of you equally. My Thanksgiving was pretty good! Well, as good as Thanksgiving can be when nobody feels like cooking so you buy a pound of sliced turkey and drop it in a pot of warm canned gravy, toss some of it on bread, and have a can of jellied cranberry sauce on the side. It's not good unless you can still see the can ripples in it. Mmm. Can ripples. Delicious.

Right, right, the Q&A! Let's start with Rasman's question...

I was just thinking about Death Knights and PvP and realized, Casters are really going to be hurting in the areas now if they match up agianst a DK. Death Knights don't care about your casting bar because they can just yank you in or go Vader on you because you forgot his cookies, and choke you for the Silence. Matter of fact, if they get you close, they really have 3 or 4 ways to interupt those casts, if you include the stun from an Unholy DK's Ghoul, that is. Am I just stammering on and not knowing what I'm talking about, or are Death Knights going to make this upcoming Arena season VERY Melee heavy?

Continue reading The Queue: Death Knights in the arena and other things

The Queue: Death Knights in the arena and other things originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 28 Nov 2008 11:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Around Azeroth: The ice queen - Fri, 28 Nov 2008 10:00:00 EST


Now that Thanksgiving is over, we can look forward to endless Christmas jingles and store decorations involving snow, snow, snow. Frost mage Ororo of Kargath is getting into the winter spirit with her own personal blizzard in the icy land of Dun Morogh. But what of those of us who live in warmer climes, like Durotar or Los Angeles? Are we always to be left out of the fun? Well, we may not have a white Christmas, but we'll be laughing in our tank tops when February rolls around and Ororo is burning her staff for firewood.

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 aroundazeroth@wowinsider.com with a copy of your shot and a brief explanation of the scene. You could be featured here next!

Remember to include your player name, server and/or guild if you want it mentioned. Please include the word "Azeroth" in your post so it does not get swept into the spam bin. We strongly prefer full screen shots without the UI showing -- use alt-Z to remove it. Please, no more battleground scoreboards, "mounted mounts", or pictures of the Ninja Turtles in Dalaran.

Around Azeroth: The ice queen originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 28 Nov 2008 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Path of a Hero keeps walking forward - Fri, 28 Nov 2008 09:00:00 EST
Reader Aaron V., creator of the Path of a Hero site that we linked to a while back, sent us an email to say that the site is better than ever. It's jumped up to 3700 users (probably more since he told us that), all the EU realms are now supported, and there are many more social updates built into the interface. Not only can you search the entire database with a new Ubersearch, but users can now comment on journal entries and even send messages to each other. Aaron tells us that stability is better than ever, and he says he's been getting a lot of good feedback, too -- people have been telling him that they wish the site had been around since they were level 1.

Cool to see that it's working so well. The site lets you upload screenshots of your character, and then pulls Armory data (including gems, enchants, and set item bonuses) out into the page as well. We'll have to see, too, if Aaron is able to implement the new Achievement and stat info -- maybe you'll be able to chart your character's gold or achievements over time.

Finally, Aaron says that he is working on support for alts and thinking about setting up "path of a guild"-type features, so you can track not only a character's progress, but a guild's progress as well. Definitely a cool idea to look back at where you were in the game, and see all of the things you've earned and achieved so far.

Path of a Hero keeps walking forward originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 28 Nov 2008 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Breakfast Topic: Most annoying Northrend Mob - Fri, 28 Nov 2008 08:00:00 EST


Hey, don't get me wrong. I am a confirmed Northrend fanboy. As a big fan of Warcraft III, Norse Mythology, High fantasy, and the like, Wrath of the Lich King is pretty much almost perfect. It taught me how to love again and fixed my hot rod. But there's still some annoying parts too. In particular, my problem the last few days has been with the Shoveltusk.

Continue reading Breakfast Topic: Most annoying Northrend Mob

Breakfast Topic: Most annoying Northrend Mob originally appeared on WoW Insider on Fri, 28 Nov 2008 08:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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World of WarCrafts: Crochet Boomkin - Thu, 27 Nov 2008 19:00:00 EST
Every Thursday, Shelbi Roach of The Bronze Kettle guides you in creating WoW-inspired crafts using real world mats with World of WarCrafts.

Almina of <Sisters of Mercy>, an alliance guild member on the Gurabashi server and a fellow Texan, has created an epic crochet replica of the awesomest druid form in the game.

Almina created a Crochet Boomkin for her father who happens to live out of state, but stays connected with his daughter by way of Azeroth. She didn't have a pattern to work from but managed to produce this impressive specimen nonetheless.

Check out the in-progress and final product pictures here.

World of WarCrafts: Crochet Boomkin originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 27 Nov 2008 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Scattered Shots: Reputation rewards for Hunters in Wrath of the Lich King - Thu, 27 Nov 2008 18:00:00 EST


Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! You didn't think Scattered Shots was taking the day off, did you? Hopefully, there's enough of you who aren't completely zonked out on turkey, ham, or beef to read this.

So by now, I figure most of you are well on your way to 80, and are probably starting to ask yourself: Which reputation should I grind first? There's tons of ways to choose, be it roleplaying who your character would align themselves with or choosing the one that's easiest to grind. One of the most popular and most effective though, is pretty simple: Asking yourself which one has the best loot. Today's Scattered Shots will center around that last one.

If you're still not sure how to grind reputation in Northrend, or forgot where the quartermasters are, be sure to check out our Wrath 101 post on reputations, as well as our post on the Wolvar and Oracles of Sholozar Basin. Once you've done that, or if you remember the basics, read on!

Continue reading Scattered Shots: Reputation rewards for Hunters in Wrath of the Lich King

Scattered Shots: Reputation rewards for Hunters in Wrath of the Lich King originally appeared on WoW Insider on Thu, 27 Nov 2008 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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