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Blizzard LF numbers geek, pst

If your idea of fun in playing World of Warcraft is to mine the auction house or raid buffers for statistics and then turning them over every which way, then Blizzard may have a job that's of interest to you. Admittedly, the best candidate would also have a degree in "computer science, statistics, operations research, industrial engineering, and mathematics, or business administration, marketing, or management with strong quantitative focus" but we're sure there are some WoW Insider readers who fit their Data Analyst posting bill.

Sure, it may not be the most glamorous position ever offered, but it's still working for Blizzard - and in this case, working away from the front lines. Think of the perks; the awesomeness of being able to get in on Blizzard games well before anyone else gets to; the cool gifts that Blizz seems to like to give employees; the ability to get in to BlizzCon without having to play tag with the mrglrfrling Failoc. All that, and hey - it's translating numbers to non-number-geek English, which seems to be a passion amongst many of the numbers geeks I know. So if you've got the chops and are looking for a job many would envy you for, what are you waiting for? Get to applying - and good luck!

[Via Virtual Economy Research Network]

Filed under: Blizzard, News items, Economy

Breakfast Topic: Most embarrassing thing you've ever done in WoW?

After the clamor the other day, the WoW Insider virtual offices broke into quite a bit of punnery. You wouldn't believe the clam-itous amount of punishment we underwent. It was a clam-ity. Of course, this sparked off a discussion on what is funniest in WoW, which turned into the most embarrassing thing that was ever done, which we thought sounded like a good breakfast topic.

For me, amusingly enough, my most embarrassing moment actually had to do with a clam. We were in UBRS (back when UBRS was still hard and let you run 15-man groups) and one of our warriors got bugged while looting. While it's fun to watch someone scoot around in the looting position, it's not too good when it's your main tank. At the time the only real way to get out of the glitch was to carry a clam with you, open it and close it without looting. Being the only female in the raid - and not even thinking about it first - I cheerfully offered to give our main tank the clam I carried with me since he was grumping about being stuck.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics, Humor

Around Azeroth: One with the shadows

In the frozen wastes of the Dragonblight, legend has it that there's a ghostly priestess who wanders the landscape seeking travelers in need of aid. However, she's not the type to jump in and heal - her powers are more dark and sinister than that. When you are in trouble, she will appear to melt faces then fade into the distance, lost among the shadowy scenery all around. Scholars dismiss this as nothing but nonsense, but still, the tales told by fireside persist.

Of course, this isn't that ghost of legend - although she's good at melting faces nonetheless! This image comes to us from Schubert, Shadow Priest of Baelgun, who had just picked up an Armored Brown Bear from Dalaran and snapped this shot when she noticed that her shadowform matched the nearby landscape perfectly.

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 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, double-mounts, or pictures of the Ninja Turtles in Dalaran.

Filed under: Screenshots, Around Azeroth, Galleries

Authenticators back in stock

For those of you who have been patiently waiting, trying to catch them in stock - good news! The Blizzard store is currently showing that there are authenticators back in stock for your ordering pleasure. As if that weren't awesome enough, it's not just the United States authenticators that are available and ready for purchase. It seems Blizzard has stocked up across the board as they're showing that the authenticator is available for Canada/Australia/Latin America/New Zealand, Europe and Korea as well. Let's hope this is the beginning of a trend where they're available everywhere more often.

That said, your guess is as good as ours as to how long the current stock might last. (Read: probably not long if history is any indication.) So if you forgot to pick up a present for that WoW player in your life and are looking for a way out of the post-holiday doghouse (or just need one for yourself) head on over to the Blizzard store and get your authenticator ordered - quickly.

Update: Looks like the Canadian ones are gone as of 7:26 PM.

[Via the WoW LJ]

Filed under: News items, Hardware, Account Security

Breakfast Topic: The oldest WoW player you know

World of Warcraft seems to pull in players from the very young, to the fairly old. While the younger ones are generally pretty vociferous about themselves, a lot of the older players don't run about advertising it. (Note: I'm not making a judgement call on play-styles. I've met adults who can't spell to save their butt and younger folks who are not only eloquent, but highly-intelligent theorycrafters.) So when we got a mail recently from Pamela who told us she'd be turning 50 later this month, she wondered who the oldest people we knew were. There were a few writers who chimed in....

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics

Breakfast Topic: Will work for Blizz

I've often thought I'd do just about anything to work at Blizzard. I mean, with offices that look like this, working on one of your favorite games - who wouldn't? But then I think about my many years spent in the trenches as both rep and management at various IT/Internet jobs, and I'm no longer sure that I'd do anything to work there. You see, the one group I don't envy are those on the front lines of customer service. Much like the story from Thursday in which we learned about a rep having to deal with a kid and his suicide threat when he ostensibly didn't get what he wanted, CSRs, GMs and CMs deal with very frustrating situations every day.

But there again, it is Blizzard, and I'd be lying if I said most people I know wouldn't give their [insert requisite body part] to work there, just to experience the culture and be part of the company that makes some truly awesome games. The sheer coolness of the company and a lot of their outward facing policies seems like being part of that team would more than make up for any abuse you might get as a trade-off. How about you? Would you be willing to step onto the front lines, taking every nasty, mean comment you're dealt with a smile - or carefully constructed snark? Would you be willing to work at Blizzard on the front lines? Or is that a bit too much of a figurative bulls-eye than you'd want painted on yourself?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics

WoW Moviewatch: Shop Vac

I can't help it. I'm an absolute fangirl when it comes to Jonathan Coulton and Mike "Spiff" Booth. That's why when Michael Gray let the team know he was having Internet problems, I simply had to jump in and share the most recent Spiffworld WoW machinima, Shop Vac.

Spiff notes at the end of the video, this song is all about suburban angst, and how people want to live there until they realize the 'burbs are kind of boring. As he says, "This phenomenon is exemplified in the shop vac, a tool found in many suburban garages for sucking up leaves, dirt, nails, or whatever. When you first use a shop vac, it seems like the most awesome thing ever. But then you realize it's just a vaccum cleaner."

Another fun aspect of the video is the return of one character from previous videos. See if you can spot who it is causing trouble once again. Also, be sure to keep an eye out for what must be the saddest achievement ever. Now, with all that said, check out Shop Vac for some lunchtime movie fun that doesn't suck. (Pun intended.)

Filed under: Machinima, WoW Moviewatch

PTRs back up for more testing mayhem

Been itching to try out some of the new hotness of the test realms? If so, you're in luck. Blizzard has brought the test realms back online for all your something-new-to-do needs. There are still people reporting problems with level 80 characters who were transferred over being locked, which may prove to be a snag if you transferred early, got shunted to the Spanish PTRs, then tried to re-copy. (No update on that situation as of yet.)

If you want to go try out your new Mechanostrider or Chocob...err...Hawkstrider mount; see what kind of nerfs or buffs have hit your favorite class; number-crunch the PvP changes; or check out any of the myriad changes coming up in 3.0.8 - now is the time!

Filed under: Patches, Realm Status, News items

Felicia Day on having Microsoft as a Guildmate

In this day and age, you have to applaud geeks who take their ideas and make good on them. Take, for example, Felicia Day. Talented, beautiful, and geeky to boot, Felicia recognized that all the drama we know and love as part of MMO culture would make for one hell of a sitcom. She could have quit after networks repeatedly turned her down or told her they didn't get it, but she stuck to her guns. Producing the show herself and releasing it to YouTube, she's become a pretty epic Internet celebrity in her own right. Since then, The Guild has built up enough buzz that when it came time to distribute Season 2, she apparently had several offers to choose from. (No real shocker there!)

Why choose to sign up with Microsoft, then? Well, okay, beyond being able to send your video out on Xbox Live - which is pretty geeky from where I'm at - Microsoft isn't generally known as a heavy player in the sitcom business. According to Felicia in an interview with the Los Angeles Times, Microsoft is not only is willing to distribute The Guild on Xbox Live, for Zune, and on MSN Video in high-definition, but they're also allowing her to keep full creative control and ownership of all of the work. The deal lets Microsoft have it exclusively for four weeks up to the end of the season, but after that period, she's free to post it to YouTube (or wherever she wants, really) so anyone who doesn't own a Zune, isn't on Live, or willing to surf over to MSN Video can still enjoy the second season of The Guild.

I just hope that Felicia and crew will keep us laughing with their geeky hijinks for a long time to come. Short of letting a baby nom on a powerstrip (and if you've seen that in real life, I don't envy you) there's quite a bit of The Guild that rings home with MMO geeks. Much like Jell-O, there's always room for more geeky humor - and more of the awesome cast of The Guild!

Filed under: Guilds, News items, Humor

BlizzCon 2008: The awesome of the ending ceremony

On Saturday night the walls of the Anaheim Convention Center rocked with the cheers and laughter of thousands of BlizzCon 2008 attendees. This year's two-day event was packed full of excellent panels, cool gameplay and of course, lines that seemed to stretch from here to eternity. (I personally clocked in 3 1/2 hours in the store line - but I got awesome goodies out of it.) However, it was this final event that put the crown jewel in this year's BlizzCon event. Curious as to what all went on? Click through the gallery to check out the sights (and some sounds) from the front lines!

Filed under: Events, WoW Social Conventions, Blizzard, Galleries, BlizzCon