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Blizzard on Garrison Invasions

Garrison Invasions, how do they work? Well, Blizzard decided to go ahead and explain exactly that. Some players have been confused by seeing the introductory Garrison Invasion restricted to Rank 2 of the Garrison, and thought that the Invasions had been removed from Rank 3. Not the case, says Nethaera.

Nethaera - Garrison Invasions and You
We've been seeing a lot of confusion in regard to the way Garrison Invasions work and we wanted to take some time to clear up this confusion for you.

Most players will get their first taste of what Invasions will be like when they get into Tier 2 of their Garrison. Approximately midway through Frostfire Ridge or Shadowmoon Valley, a player's Garrison will be attacked either by a Thunderlord or Shadowmoon force. The quest is just a taste of what this type of gameplay offers but it's not a full blown invasion just yet. It's a way to get your feet wet and experience just a bit of what it will be like when you reach max level. For those who move quickly into their 3rd tier before getting this event, don't worry. You haven't missed out on any special rewards. It's just a precursor to what you're going to get to experience at maximum level.

Once you reach max level, these events are triggered organically. What this means is, as you fight powerful foes among the enemy factions of Draenor (generally in and around the areas for Apexis Crystal Missions) you'll draw their attention and an enemy force will eventually prepare to attack your Garrison. When that happens, the commander outside your Town Hall will have a quest for you, allowing you to trigger the invasion.

The Nuts and Bolts:

  • Your effectiveness in defending your Garrison is measured by how many enemies you're able to defeat and how many of your guards and buildings survive the assault. (Don't worry, there's no permanent damage- they will rebuild it!)
  • You can bring up to 2 friends into your Garrison to assist in the defense. (It's like a party, but with heavily armored invaders.)
  • Based on your final score you and your allies present will earn a Bronze, Silver, and/or Gold award for your efforts – each award may only be earned once per week.


So fear not - if you upgraded your Garrison to Tier 3, you'll still get your Garrison Invasions.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Events, News items, Warlords of Draenor

Garrison Campaign quests unlocked


Blizzard has recently unlocked Garrison Campaign quests, so if you're level 100 you should be on the lookout for a new quest somewhere in your garrison. What are Garrison Campaigns? They're weekly quest chains that give you some cool rewards. There will also be a bonus objective you can complete while you're doing the quest for 800 Apexis Crystals (in addition to 800 from the regular daily).

What quest you get appears to be entirely random. For example, this week I had Garrison Campaign: The Ring of Blood and my warrior friend, Mr. Rossi had Garrison Campaign: Seismic Matters. My reward for completing the Ring of Blood campaign quest was a new title, "Blood Champion." The final reward from the latter quest is a mole machine outside your garrison that will transport you instantly to your outpost in Gorgrond. Other quest rewards include things like Pile of Blackfuse Shredder Scrap or Sargerei Disguise. There's also an achievement tied into completing all of them, which looks like it will take 3 months assuming you complete one of them every week.

Filed under: Warlords of Draenor

Highmaul raid schedule revealed

We've all been assiduously leveling through Warlords and now we get to find out what it was all for - starting this December 2nd, Highmaul unlocks, the first Warlords of Draenor raid zone. Blizzard has put a spotlight up on the zone, talking about specific boss fights and when the various wings of the raid unlock. As expected, mythic opens the week after normal/heroic, and LFR unfolds in wings, with wing 1 opening the same week as mythic, then wings 2 and 3 over the following weeks.

I'm interested in the decision to have Kargath Bladefist, an iconic character who even got his own Lords of War short, as the very first raid boss of the expansion. I'm also interested that there are three optional bosses this time out, with the Butcher, Tectus and Brackenspore all listed as optional. It reminds me a little of how you could go from Flame Leviathan straight to XT once your raid had geared up enough, and I'm all for it.

Head on over to the official site to get started on the preview and thinking about raid strategies. December 2 isn't far off.

Filed under: Raiding, Warlords of Draenor

Know Your Lore: Nobundo

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.

One of the fantastic things about Warlords of Draenor is getting to see the way history provides context for a life. By seeing how people have changed, and how they could have been we get a sense of how they are, as we know them - and for me one of the most fantastic changes to contemplate and understand is that of Vindicator Nobundo, a stalwart draenei paladin, who in a different life became Farseer Nobundo, first draenei shaman. Nobundo's story is one of overcoming horrific loss, enduring not just the destruction of his way of life but a corrosion of the body that threatened his very soul, and his ability to overcome and become someone who could inspire his people to a new path displays his strength of spirit.

The Vindicator Nobundo we meet on Draenor - the one who helps fight the Burning Legion forces in Talador, who comes to Nagrand to help calm the elements - has not endured the same trials as Farseer Nobundo. He has not come out the other side of seeing his people nearly destroyed, his body warped by fel energies, his connection to the Holy Light severed. And yet, he is Nobundo - he embodies everything the Farseer was, everything he lost to become who he is today.

So who is Farseer Nobundo? And who is Vindicator Nobundo?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Burning Crusade, Lore, Know your Lore, Warlords of Draenor

The Queue: Dungeon difficulty, Dungeon Queues, Boost a warrior.

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

I'm one of those people who liked Mists of Pandaria. I thought and still think that it was a solid, well designed, well developed expac with a lot of solid new lore, well designed content, and that its major flaws were a lack of dungeons as the expansion continued, some PvP issues, and that deadly year plus with no new content at the end. So while I'm heartened to see Warlords having a positive effect and people excited for it, I'm not down on the 'stupid pandas' trip a lot of people seem to be on. If you didn't like Pandaria, that's your call, but it doesn't make those of us who did less intelligent than you. It's just a matter of taste.

That said, I'm in a paraoxysm of joy over the draenei lore in this expansion. I haven't leveled Horde yet - my tauren's getting impatient, but I have so much to do on my main it doesn't feel like the right time yet. Draenor is an incredibly well designed and executed expansion so far. It's a joy to play through.

Bugboy asks:
Q4tQ: I haven't gotten into the new dungeons yet, but recall that, difficulty-wise, they're supposed to be somewhere between Cata and MoP. Is that about where they are?

I'm of the opinion (based both on my own experiences and those of my friends) that some dungeons are harder than others. Slag Mines has issues if you're melee, as an example. I'd definitely argue that they veer towards the Cataclysm side of things. Skyreach and Auchindoun didn't seem too bad.

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Filed under: The Queue, Warlords of Draenor

Around Azeroth: And the seas shall run red with blood or lava or ketchup or something

Submitter Yseora of Fights Like a Girl on Blackwater Raiders (US-A) writes, "I was running Dragon Soul a few weeks ago and at the end of the raid when Deathwing had been dealt with for the thousandth time, I couldn't help but notice how big and mysterious the whole area was and how little of it you could actually explore. Taking a swig out of my Filled Festive Mug, I ran and jumped off the edge, hoping to get to another rock. Obviously, I wasn't able to make it that far, but I was able to get to the middle of The Maelstrom. Having a rare view of the surrounding area and of Thrall/The Dragon Aspects, it was interesting to see Deathwing's view and how small even the most powerful beings in Azeroth really are."

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.

Filed under: Around Azeroth

Breakfast Topic: The Warlords surge

The other night, while recording the WoW Insider Show podcast, we talked about the general feeling we had that subscriptions to World of Warcraft had gone up. The basic consensus was that our friend's lists were full, we were seeing lots of people online for the first time in a while, that in general WoW had almost certainly seen a sub bump. We weren't expecting a three million sub jump, though. And it seems likely that Blizzard wasn't expecting it either - while some of the launch problems were the fault of a DDoS attack, some were undoubtedly the result of this unprecedented player surge.

This got me to thinking about what it means that Warlords saw this many people come back. We've talked a lot about the plot being hard for some folks to follow, but just as clearly, that didn't stop people from coming back. WoW dropped below 10 million subs back in 2012, during the Cataclysm expansion.

I don't personally think that WoW needs 10 million subs to be viable - not even close, in fact. Even at its lowest sub numbers this year it had more than two million subs over its Burning Crusade number of 5 million subs, and more than seven times its competitors. WoW is a phenomenon, and one that will continue as long as Blizzard wants to support it. But it's interesting to see this jump - what is it about Warlords that got players to come back?


Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Warlords of Draenor

Rygarius clarifies Draenor's Secret Power hotfix

One of the recent hotfixes was to the Draenor's Secret Power quest. Before the hotfix, players were able to complete the three heroic dungeons and turn in the quest items for the next stage in the legendary quest chain, getting an ilevel 680 ring in the process, because they were not required to complete the 4986 Apexis Crystals requirement first.
Rygarius - Sooo you're letting them keep the rings?
Here to provide additional clarification on the hotfix note that went out yesterday, November 17.

Quests
Draenor's Secret Power: Completion of this quest is now required before being able to move onto the next step of the Legendary quest chain. For characters that skipped this quest, completion of this quest has also been made into a requirement before being eligible for the next upgrade.

This means players that skipped the quest will still have to complete Draenor's Secret Power before being eligible for the next upgrade. That last part wasn't included until now cause I was tunnel visioning on hotfixes and glossed over the supplemental email for the change. Hope this clears any confusion up.


If you have the ring, you'll be keeping it, but people who haven't yet upgraded will have to wait until they have the apexis crystals. Since raids won't be open until December, this is (to my eyes, anyway) a minor advantage for a few players. Going any further in the quest still costs that 4986 Apexis Crystals.


Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Bugs, Blizzard, Warlords of Draenor

World of Warcraft passes 10 million subscribers

In a press release today, Blizzard Entertainment announced that WoW's total subscribers are now up over 10 million players. This comes on the wave of selling 3.3 million copies of Warlords of Draenor.

This confirms vague statements issued by community managers and other Blizzard people over the last week -- that things have gotten quite busy around Azeroth.

Filed under: Blizzard

Patch 6.0.3 hotfixes for November 18


Yes, more hotfixes. This round has numerous garrison and quest bug fixes. They've also opened up the second Apexis Crystal vendor, and reverted an earlier PvP hotfix that was originally implemented to tone down PvP damage at level 90. Here are some of the highlights.
  • Apexis Traders Dawn-Seeker Krek (Alliance) and Dawn-Seeker Alkset (Horde) are now offering Exceptional gear (item level 645) for sale.
  • Increased the spawn rates for creatures and NPCs in the Skettis Ruins area in Spires of Arak.
  • Characters with Warlords PvP gear that had its secondary item level activated due to being in PvP combat temporarily disqualifies them from queuing for Dungeons and Raid Finder.
  • Gnomes are now able to increase their reputation with Wrynn's Vanguard.
  • Reverted a hotfix from October 15 that reduced all PvP damage by 25%.
  • Miner's Coffee movement speed buff should now stack correctly with other movement speed buffs.
  • Solium Band rings can now be equipped at level 98 (down from level 100).
You can find the full list of hotfixes after the break.

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Filed under: Warlords of Draenor