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The Queue: Shadowmoon Valley is really, really pretty

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Anne Stickney (@Shadesogrey) is answering all kinds of questions today.

I don't think I can really express, nor can I get over, just how gorgeous this zone is. I got the same feeling running around Shadowmoon as I did running around Nagrand, Grizzly Hills and the Jade Forest for the first time. They really knocked this one out of the park.

PurityKnights asked:

For those that got into beta, did it just show up on your Bnet launcher or did you have to check your account page?

If you have the new Battle.net launcher, it should theoretically just show up. But honestly if you're curious about whether or not you have access, the quickest, easiest way to find out is still just to log into your account on the official website and see if you've been flagged for it.


Snichy76 asked:

I'm not a big lore fan so I know virtually nothing of the why and wherefores of stuff that happens in WoW and I feel I'm missing out as the quest text means nothing to me so I usually just skip to the end and read the quest summary of what I need to do to finish it. I've tried reading a bit about the lore but in all honesty I just get bored as I read all day at work and don't want to do it in my spare time. What would be awesome would be an abridged version of the history of time according to Warcraft, from year dot up to now(ish) paying particular attention to things that affect the World of Warcraft era, condensed in a few thousand words. Anything like that around so I can catch up without spending weeks non-stop reading?

Yes, actually, there is. Check out the World of Warcraft: Ultimate Visual Guide. It was pretty much made for this purpose -- to give people that haven't ever really gotten into the lore a quick set of summaries that they can easily follow. It doesn't go into overwhelming detail, but each expansion is summed up in turn, with tons and tons of gorgeous artwork to go along with it all. It's a large book, but you don't have to read it all at once -- you can just hit the parts that interest you and come back for more information later if you'd like.

Honestly, there's no real way to summarize the entire history of Azeroth in a couple thousand words. If there were, I'd have no reason to write Know Your Lore. But the UVG tries to make it as easy to follow as possible. If you don't want to drop the money for the book, try checking your local library to see if they've got a copy.

Biggiy05 asked:

What are the chances that our mounts will be updated at some point in WOD? I know armor pieces from expansions past won't be updated because of how many items there are but what about our mounts? It's going to look weird seeing my newly updated dwarf riding around on a mount that is 10 years old.

Not likely at all. New character models are taking a lot of time -- and on top of that, we have a ton of new mounts released with every expansion, each one more detailed than the last. Would you rather have a bunch of new mounts to collect, or just an updated version of the one you've had since vanilla?

JeffLaBowski asked:

Q4tQ: What is the strangest thing you have been accused of? In WoW or real life? I ask this because I had a commenter accuse me of getting paid to comment on this site. Which was highly amusing. Until I thought of all the pennies I am missing out on.


I once had a very angry man confront me for being a Nazi because of a bumper sticker on my car. The bumper sticker read "Republicans for Voldemort."

I guess he never got his Hogwarts letter.

Mythriak asked:

Why Shadomoon Valley got his own acronym (SMV) and Frostfire Ridge didn't got one yet?

Because Shadowmoon Valley has been in the game since Burning Crusade, albeit in a slightly different incarnation. Frostfire Ridge, on the other hand, wasn't present in that expansion -- well, it was, but it was called Blade's Edge and looked very, very different.

trapdk asked:

Q4TQ: Why is Duskwood considered "contested territory"? I ask because it's annoying on a primarily horde server to be flagged in a zone that is 100% alliance territory, with the horde making no advances.

I presume you're playing on a PvP server -- every zone above level 20 is flagged as contested, as well as capital cities. On PvE servers, the only place you'll get flagged is in the opposing faction's capital cities. It's got nothing to do with who has control of the territory, it just means that if you're in that zone, you're flagged. Such is life on PvP servers.

SteveJ asked:

I understand that we'll carry one set of gear that will change stats depending on our spec. But will the 2 and 4-piece set bonuses also change? What if we have a set with one bonus but not the other?

Yep, they certainly will change -- it wouldn't be very helpful if the stats changed, but the bonuses didn't!

MadProfessor asked:

So.....are you flying in SMV?

He is, but only because there are flight points all along the zone. The fey dragons are the flight path mounts for draenei.


Have questions about the World of Warcraft? The WoW Insider crew is here with The Queue, our daily Q&A column. Leave your questions in the comments, and we'll do our best to answer 'em!

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