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Filed under: Alliance

Know Your Lore: World of Warcraft Cataclysm Worgen



Welcome to Know your Lore, where we bring the story behind the people, places, and cultures of Azeroth.

The Worgen are coming. We now know for sure that, come Deathwing's Cataclysm, The Worgen of Gilneas will be answering the call of the Alliance. The Worgen, while they have quickly become a classic, iconic race in Warcraft lore, actually only came onto the scene in WoW itself, providing an enemy to Horde and Alliance alike in Silverpine Forest, Duskwood, and Ashenvale. But who are they, and what bought them to this place where they will become one of the next playable races of the World of Warcraft before other choices?

In the Beginning

To know how this all begins, the first place to look is The Book of Ur. This Book, written by Ur, a Mage of Dalaran, eventually found its way into the personal library of the Archmage Arugal. It describes the origin of the Worgen.

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Filed under: Alliance, Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, Lore, Know your Lore, Cataclysm, Worgen

BlizzCon 2009: Worgen environments

This video, which comes straight from this afternoon's BlizzCon Art Panel, shows off some of the environments Blizzard has put together for the Worgen, the brand new playable Alliance race. I love the look -- it's almost like Forsaken architecture, but before things went bad (or maybe with a hidden edge rather than a rotted look). We're not quite sure yet what these areas will be called -- most of it looks like what they're calling Gilneas City in the playable demos here on the floor.

But you'll probably agree that it does look excellent. We'll have another video coming up from the Art Panel soon, looking at the Goblins and what they've got sitting around their starting zones.

Filed under: Alliance, Machinima, Leveling, BlizzCon, Cataclysm, Worgen

Creative to unveil World of Warcraft headset at BlizzCon

Creative Labs posted a World of Warcraft-related teaser yesterday, and today WoW.com is proud to deliver an exclusive reveal: they're promoting a brand new product called the Sound Blaster World of Warcraft headset. This will be a state of the art gaming headset available in both wired and wireless versions, complete with all of Creative's high end gaming audio technology, including THX TruStudio PC Surround, which they say is the "most advanced 'virtual' 3D surround" on the market today. Creative's CMSS is already recognized by many as the best virtual surround sound in gaming, and THX TruStudio PC is supposed to sound even better. The headset also features Creative's VoiceFX technology (so you can disguise your voice with a few different effects), and they say the wireless version of the headset will feature an uncompressed signal that sounds terrific as well.

The headset itself is designed in coordination with Blizzard, and the ear cups (which are complete over-ear) actually feature lighted glyphs, available in Horde or Alliance flavors at launch (with other designs released eventually), and illuminated by programmable RGB LEDs. They have their own software interface, so you'll be able to choose from 16 million colors. Price isn't set just yet, but we'd expect it'll be in line with other high-end headsets, from $100 to $150 depending on what options you go with.

The headset releases in November, but Creative also sent us the pre-prototype render at right, and they've updated their teaser with a picture of the Alliance glyph. Creative tells us they'll have the headset on display at BlizzCon, so if you're there this weekend, stop by their booth and check it out. And be sure to stay tuned to WoW.com -- we're working on a way to give you the chance to win one of these for yourself.


BlizzCon 2009 is coming up on August 21st and 22nd! We've got all the latest news and information. At BlizzCon you can play the latest games, meet your guildmates, and ask the developers your questions. Plus, there's some great looking costumes.

Filed under: Horde, Alliance, BlizzCon, Hardware

Chinese Warcraft casemod is awesome


A few things about this Warcraft-flavored PC casemod, seen over on this Chinese website. First: it's awesome. Warcraft art is faithfully recreated, and as you can see, there's a nice Horde montage on one side, Alliance on the other, and the Dark Portal sitting right there in front. Second: it's probably pretty old -- most of that art is from the game's original release four years ago.

So it's probably not exactly the latest and greatest in Warcraft PC designs (though it might be a little later than the ghost train pirate art). But still, it looks great. And I definitely wouldn't mind wandering around Azeroth on that rather than my current gigantic black tower of a PC.

Update: Turns out the case is for sale. That is, if you want to spend $299 on a case.

[via Technabob]

Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Human, Orcs, Mage, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, NPCs, Galleries

Scattered Shots: So you want to be a Hunter - Part 1 Racials

Good day folks and welcome to Scattered Shots. The column that takes a good look at what it takes to be a Hunter in the World of Warcraft. I am Eddie "Brigwyn" Carrington from the Hunting Lodge. This week we'll be starting our "So you want to be a Hunter" class guide series.

I have to admit something, I'm a chronic leveler. I do it over and over. Yes, I know it's not the typical play style. Yes, I also know it's highly unorthodox. By now you are probably thinking, "Who in their right mind would want to be a chronic leveler?" That someone would be me.

See when I get bored, and the game starts to become a bit of a drag I can't help myself. It only becomes a matter of time till I feel the need to scratch an itch to start over. Yes, I know it's crazy. But you can look at it this way, at least I know how the game works for the beginning Hunter just as well as the raiding one.

Having done this a few times now, I thought it would idea to put this experience to some practical purpose. It seems to be a waste and not at least write up a Hunter guide for new Hunters. So I thought I'd create a new series of posts entitled, "So you want to be a Hunter."

Before we get started, I need to make sure we're all on the same page by setting some ground rules.
  1. This series is intended for the new player and/or a new Hunter.
  2. Since most new player won't have a rich uncle in game, nor does everyone use Recruit-A-Friend, I'll just focus on leveling up the old fashioned way.
  3. When discussing zone and levels, I'll only highlight some key quests along the way.
  4. Except for when we reach the "getting ready to raid" guide, all guides will focus on using a solo-leveling/grinding build.
So there, with some ground rules set. Let's get started on making you the best Hunter possible.

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Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Night Elves, Dwarves, Orcs, Tauren, Trolls, Hunter, Analysis / Opinion, How-tos, Draenei, Blood Elves, Leveling, Factions, Guides, Classes, (Hunter) Scattered Shots

Blizzard to focus on battlegrounds more

Ghostcrawler has posted a little paragraph on the forums, reaffirming something we've already heard from Blizzard: that in the past, they've spent more time on Arenas to the detriment of battlegrounds, and that battlegrounds are going to be gaining a little more focus in the future. They've already started, actually, with the Isle of Conquest in 3.2, but GC says there's even more on the table, and that future plans will be revealed at BlizzCon.

He also brings up another good point, however: in terms of class balance, Arenas are a much more striking example of imbalances than battlegrounds are. Battlegrounds have all sorts of things going on, and so you don't get as good a picture of just how the different classes work with and against each other as you do in Arenas. And so, if you're a dev trying to figure out class balances, of course you'll spend more time looking at the Arena gameplay than the BGs. GC also says that the majority of issues in BGs tend to be map-based rather than class imbalances, which is really a whole other science. Not that BGs aren't relevant to how the classes work, just that there are many more variables in there than the relative vacuum chamber of Arenas.

All good points. I'm a fan of battlegrounds much more than Arenas, but I don't particularly feel that Blizzard has ignored them necessarily. The real problem, to my mind, with BGs is simply how faction imbalanced they are: it seems like on every realm in every given BG, one side always seems to have the upper hand, for whatever reason. Sometimes it's a population problem, sometimes it's a map issue. But GC is right: those problems are more pressing than class balance in the BGs.

Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Blizzard, PvP, Classes, Battlegrounds, Arena

Guildwatch: Just don't say "priceless"


We got quite a few good photoshopped victory pictures in the email after our suggestion that you send us some a few weeks ago, so you'll probably see a few of them here in the column over the next few weeks (assuming, that is, we don't get any hilarious chat logs that we need to show you). This one's from Tyranis, GM of The Arcane Council on Bloodhoof, who adds in some fun stuff to every screenshot his guild puts together. Go see more of them on their website.

More downed news, as well as drama and recruiting notices, in this week's Guildwatch, which starts below. If you have news to send in, please do: drop us a quick note (the more you can emulate the format of the news below, the better) at guildwatch@wow.com. Meanwhile, read on for this week's column.

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Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Humor, Raiding, Guildwatch, Bosses

All the World's a Stage: Possibilities for worgen and goblins


All the World's a Stage, and all the orcs and humans merely players. They have their stories and their characters; and one man in his time plays many roles.

Ever since word broke about the possibility of playing either a worgen or a goblin, I've been thinking a lot about how it would be to roleplay them. In terms of lore, each one fits in very nicely -- the goblins have the neutral city of Undermine not far from the great Maelstrom at the center of the world, and the worgen have lots of connections to other dimensions, possibly the Emerald Dream. Assuming the expansion is in fact going to be a combination of the Maelstrom and the Emerald Dream, each race could have a lot to do with why the Horde and the Alliance are eager to go and continue the adventure after Northrend.

Some others are talking about how and why these races would join either faction. The goblins seem a shoo-in for the Horde, since they've already got so many connections with one another above and beyond the ostensible neutrality the goblins maintain between the Horde and the Alliance. The worgen connection to the Alliance is a bit tougher to figure out, but there are two apparent possibilities: either the humans of Gilneas have become worgen and wish to rejoin their former brethren, or the original worgen from their own dimension somehow join up with the Alliance in order to fight off a shared enemy such as the Burning Legion or the "Nightmare" of the Emerald Dream.

Today we'll discuss both of these possibilities and stake my claim on which I think is more likely, and look at a number of the story hooks that worgen and goblins could create for roleplayers if and when we get the chance to play them.

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Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, Lore, RP, All the World's a Stage (Roleplaying), Rumors, Cataclysm

Bruce Campbell and Metzen on the movie at Comic-Con

I have geeked out many times while writing for this site, but I think this is the geekiest geekout I've ever geeked out about: Bruce Campbell talking about World of Warcraft. He's hanging out at Comic-Con promoting Burn Notice (a series that I'm still watching, if only because of him), and IGN cornered him on the topic of his friend Sam Raimi's new movie, based on our very own Azeroth. Campbell says he has no idea what Raimi has in mind for the movie, and that he only just heard about the job when we did. But then he says something that will lift all of our geeky hearts: when it comes time for casting, Bruce says, "I'll get a call." And Raimi will say to him, "You play some schmuck. Some idiot guy. Some garbage man."

We can't think of too many garbagemen in Azeroth -- Topper Mcnabb, maybe? But the fact that Campbell knows about the movie and is ready to take a role is good enough for us. And he isn't the only person speculating on the part he might play: Chris Metzen brought up Campbell at Comic-Con and suggested he might play a CG-based character, like a goblin. That doesn't sound so awesome to us, though -- you've gotta let that world-famous mug shine through. It does seem a little unlikely that Campbell would play a really huge part, but a lot of people have brought up Varian Wrynn, and we can't really think of any part more fitting (plus, maybe that means the movie will focus on Horde instead of Alliance). Hail to the King, baby!

Keep an eye over on our sister site Massively for more Comic-Con coverage all this weekend, and if we hear any more about the movie, we'll be sure to let you know.

[via BlizzPlanet]

Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Humor, NPCs

Gary Whitta worked on a Warcraft screenplay

You'll notice that I surreptitiously left the question of "screenwriter" out of the other day's Breakfast Topic. That's because, quite frankly, I have no idea who I want writing the Warcraft movie. The folks I really like in Hollywood are probably too quirky to write an epic movie like this, and the folks who usually write these epic movies are too lame to handle a world like Warcraft. In my mind, only someone like Metzen should wield the pen for this one, and even then, his strengths lie in creating universes, not dialog. So I have no idea.

But apparently there's already a screenplay being worked on: with the news that Sam Raimi is taking the helm, screenwriter Gary Whitta (who's written both for games and movies) says he'd been working with both Legendary and Blizzard on crafting a screenplay that included both the sprawling world and a story that would resonate with non-players. But he says that since Raimi took over, it's likely the whole thing will go in another direction, as "his own pretty specific vision of what he wanted to do story-wise." Whitta does say, however, that, from what he's heard, "Raimi is the best possible director for this." Sounds good to us.

It'll be quite a tightrope to walk: depending on what Legendary actually wants out of the film, they've got to make the story interesting and pressing enough that even non-WoW players will get into it without ruining and/or ignoring the reason why there are so many players in the first place: the lush and intriguing universe we've all enjoyed playing in. Anyone tasked with putting together a script that uses all of those blocks to build something great will have quite a job ahead of them.

[via Blue's News]

Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Lore, NPCs

DC Series 6 figures feature Sylvanas and Bronzebeard


We only just posted about the DC Unlimited Premium series 2 figures, and here comes another set that's getting announced way earlier than it's getting released. The series 6 set isn't actually due out until March of next year (seriously, what's with all of the early announce dates on these things?), but it does have some of the most-wanted lore figures in the game depicted in action figure form. Magni Bronzebeard, Sylvanas Windrunner, and goblin tinker Gibzz Sparklighter are all making appearances, as you can see over on DC's page.

I think they look pretty darn good, though I'm still not sold on actually buying one. We'll likely see them on the floor at BlizzCon, so if you want to get a closer look, be sure to poke around the DC booth there. And even if you're not going, we'll be sure to take pics for you.

Filed under: Alliance, Dwarves, Undead, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Blizzard, NPCs

Breakfast Topic: Pick a faction, any faction...


It's one of the first choices you make when you start to play: Alliance or Horde? Horde or Alliance? Orcs or Elves? From thence forward, your entire gaming experience is defined by this decision. So -- which way did you choose? Do you fight for the glory of the Alliance? Or for the honor of the Horde? And whatever you chose... why? Did a particular race appeal to you? Were you joining friends? Do tell!

What's your faction?
Alliance8267 (37.3%)
Horde9638 (43.5%)
A little of both3249 (14.7%)
Oh, who cares?990 (4.5%)

Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics, Factions

Twinked-out NPCs in patch 3.2 thrill twinks

As expected, the twink enthusiasts over at TwinkInfo are supremely excited about that experience switch coming in patch 3.2 -- not only are they finally getting to stop XP gains on demand, but Blizzard has given them their own little easter egg in the game. We already knew the two NPCs with the switch for each faction were called Behsten in Stormwin and Slahtz in Orgrimmar (get it? "Best in slots?"), but now that the PTR is open, they've discovered something else: the NPCs themselves are twinked out with classic Rogue twink gear. From the Blackened Defias Chest to the Feet of the Lynx (and dual Assassin's Blades with Lifestealing), Blizzard went all out on these guys. As Drayner says, the only thing missing is a 'chanted Fishing Hat.

Not everybody is big on twinking -- lots of people think it's annoying to duck into the BGs for the first time and get rolled by an alt who's got a lot of money and time behind them. Fortunately, though, this XP change will not only legitimize twinking even more, but it'll get it out of our way as well, as players with XP turned off will only face other players with XP turned off (other twinks, essentially). Throw in that it's something twinks have been asking for a long time, and it's a win-win for everybody.
Patch 3.2 will bring about a new 5, 10, and 25 man instance to WoW, and usher in a new 40-man battleground called the Isle of Conquest. WoW.com will have you covered every step of the way, from extensive PTR coverage through the official live release. Check out WoW.com's Guide to Patch 3.2 for all the latest!

Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Humor, NPCs

Guildwatch: System error beep bop


We have no idea why Coridane is so against Warlocks getting made fun of in the game (he must not be a fan of our very own Warlock-hater, Christian Belt), but apparently it's serious -- serious enough for him to kick you from a raid. We do especially like that the need to assault downed Warlocks is actually a system error ("beep bop"): we would just have assumed that was normal protocol. It sure is in our raids.

More drama like this, along with downed and recruiting news, in this week's Guildwatch. If you have tips for us, feel free to send them in -- just drop us a note (please keep it short, sweet, and clear) at guildwatch@wow.com, and you might see it here next week.

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Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Instances, Humor, Raiding, Guildwatch

Feitan offers up even more WoW icons for your enjoyment


Feitan has posted another terrific set of WoW-related icons over on WoW LJ. Combine all of those with the first set, and throw in all of the other ones we've collected for you in the past, and you've got a really nice set of perfectly-sized choices from World of Warcraft to use as your icon on whatever service needs an avatar.

Like, for example, our own comments. While the cartoon Ogre we've got as the default is quite cute, you might want to make yours a little more personal -- all you've got to do is click your name after commenting, and you'll be taken to a page where you can log in and edit your profile, see your comments so far, and yes, update a new profile picture. If you're still using the default commenter icon with our brand new commenting system, now is definitely the time to make the upgrade.

Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Screenshots, Fan art

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