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Filed under: Factions

Day one of BlizzCon 2009: Round-up


Well, folks, the first day of BlizzCon went by in a blur, and we're still bouncing about all the stuff that was announced yesterday. If you don't want to slog through a ton of entries to get the TL:DR version, we've prepped a recap for you that'll take you to the highlights:

BlizzCon 2009 is here! WoW.com has continuing coverage, bringing you the latest in Cataclysm news, live blogs, galleries, and reports right from the convention floor. Check out WoW.com's Guide to BlizzCon for the latest!


Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Events, WoW Social Conventions, Blizzard, News items, Expansions, Features, Lore, Factions, BlizzCon, Cataclysm

BlizzCon 2009: Goblin backstory and zone info


The DirecTV stream cut out for me after the opening ceremony, so it's possible there are a few things I'm missing; drop a comment if it looks like I've omitted anything. Anyway, here's what we know about the Goblins (the new Horde race) so far:

BACKSTORY


The playable race is a group of Goblins based on the Isle of Kezan, a new zone between the Eastern Kingdoms and Kalimdor. While Goblins and the neutral Goblin trade organizations as a whole originate here, the official site and trailer both hint that the playable group has had (or is that, will have?) a recent and deeply unpleasant encounter with the Alliance that makes the Horde a logical choice when the time comes to pick sides. From the trailer, it would appear that much of the Goblins' starting zone is taken up by the eponymous cataclysm, the need to get away from the destruction, and their induction into the Horde, but we don't have too many details on it yet.

The playable Goblins won't be formally associated with any of the neutral Goblin trading organizations we already know and love (figuratively speaking, of course; the Steamwheedle Cartel's been bilking us for years). There's also no mention so far of the other Goblins going anywhere, so I'm assuming that the game's preexisting Goblins will remain in the game in whatever capacity they can post-cataclysm, and the Horde Goblins are a faction unto themselves named the Bilgewater Cartel.

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Filed under: Horde, Analysis / Opinion, Events, WoW Social Conventions, Expansions, Factions, Classes, BlizzCon, Cataclysm, Goblin

Breakfast Topic: Would you play a neutral character?


The Spawn and I had The Spousal Unit run Itchee the Gnome Warlock through Deadmines and now Itchee looks like a pirate. Yar! Though we are still doing the same warlocky things, The Spawn is now claiming that her character actually is a pirate -- which, as a pirate family, we encourage. But this reminded me of a conversation I had with TSU a while back. What if WoW had a playable neutral faction?

One of the great things about Star Wars Galaxies, when it was actually fun to play, was that you didn't have to fight much if you didn't want to. There were master artisans and merchant malls that were available for getting the best armor or outfitting your home or whatever. I would love to see WoW incorporate some of these aspects as well as some from other MMOs to make a more persistent world. And I think they could do this by introducing a neutral faction.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics, Factions, Classes

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

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

How to get your blog crashed by WoW.com


Every day, our tip line gets a number of requests for link exchanges, publicity, and feedback on whether a post would be good for inclusion in the Daily Quest. We're really happy to be able to direct traffic to bloggers with good information, but sometimes we get requests that leave us baffled, uncomfortable, or both. While it's pretty easy to deal with some of these (gold-selling sites wishing to advertise here are a quick, "No thanks"), some of them come from otherwise well-meaning bloggers who want a link, but who may not get the desired results from one. Naturally this leaves us with a bit of a dilemma, and these are the things I think about while nosing around incoming links and my own list of favorite blogs:

Please don't ask us to link your blog. Ask us to link a post.

Even if we love your site and we read it all the time, we still need a reason to link you that's relevant to a subject we're writing about. Readers dislike getting recommendations like "It's a great blog!" or "You're going to love it!" Uh, why is it a great blog? Why should they love it?

Nothing speaks so loudly or effectively as a great post on a good topic. Moreover, if we're linking a post of yours, your blog's main page should be linked as well. Even if we got dumb and forgot, it should be a simple matter for readers to find your central page (and you've got a design problem on your hands if they can't).

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Features, Humor, Factions

[1.Local]: Making ourselves at home


Reader comments – ahh, yes, the juicy goodness following a meaty post. [1.Local] ducks past the swinging doors to see what readers have been chatting about in the back room over the past week.

Welcome home to WoW.com. Moving into a new place can be hectic, but we think our new digs at WoW.com are pretty darn comfy. In addition to a fresh face and identity for WoW Insider, we've introduced the beta launch of WoW.com Profiles. Show off your characters with a profile on WoW.com. By downloading the WoW.com addon, you can also keep all of your friends up to date on what you're doing in game, and make blog posts and upload screenshots directly from your game client.

Not a big fan of the social media scene? You don't have to change a thing – WoW.com offers all the old content you know (and hopefully love) so well. "If I'm being honest, when I first saw that the site had changed, I didn't really 'feel it,'" commented reader Retropally. "After days of it sinking in, I'm loving it. The new theme is awesome -- and really, nothing has changed in the way of the posts that are written ..."

Join the [1.Local] gang and add your thoughts about our new look and social features -- and hop on across the fold to see what else readers were chatting about during the past week.

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Filed under: Gnomes, Analysis / Opinion, WoW Insider Business, Guilds, Features, Raiding, Factions, [1.Local]

Seals? In MY purse? It's more likely than you think

Amidst all of the cost rebalancing for Champion-level rewards in the Argent Tournament, the CMs have indicated that there would soon be new ways to obtain Champion's Seals. With the advent of patch 3.1.2, it seems Blizzard has started to follow through on that!

We received a bunch of tips in the mail over the past day or so, all letting us know that their Champion's Purses -- one of the reward choices for Champion dailies -- could randomly contain a whole 'nother Champion's Seal. This is a pretty big deal, especially since you have multiple chances per day. Players are reporting the percentage to be somewhere between 25% to 50% per Purse.

Not too shabby! This also means that those mounts you want -- including the recently-reduced Argent Hippogyph -- might be a little more within your reach, and faster at that.

We'll keep you informed of changes sure to be forthcoming, given that the CMs also mentioned that the Hippogryph cost reduction was (in part) due to their desire to add even more rewards in future patches.

Filed under: Patches, News items, Factions

Secrets of the Tuskarr: The Cheena Vala


I have to say, I still have a pretty soft spot for the Tuskarr. They're sort of minor players in Northrend, overall. You help them kidnap some kids and fight off some vikings, grab a penguin pet and a fishing pole, and you're done, and on to bigger and better things in other zones. They don't even merit art for their females. Still, they're always pretty jovial, they look like big fat and happy dudes, and they got turtle boats. It's difficult not to like them.

One of the things they did is spur me to finally get a character maxed out fishing. I was always sort of planning to, one of these days, seriously, but it took the Tuskarr to push me over the edge, just because they made it so chill and awesome. Ok, so the epic fishing pole probably had something to do with it too, but still.

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Filed under: Fishing, Virtual selves, Lore, Factions, Wrath of the Lich King

Breakfast Topic: What do you want to see in the Argent Tournament?


So here's the deal. We've been told we have more Argent Tournament content coming, that's a given. As late as a couple days ago, Blues were telling us, for example, that we'll definitely see more ways to earn Champion's Seals.

In short, come 3.2, it seems more than likely that we can expect the Goblins to be done building that coliseum, and the next phase of the tourney to be underway. So the question is, what exactly will we see?

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Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Items, Analysis / Opinion, Events, Breakfast Topics, Quests, Lore, Factions, RP

Scattered Shots: The Hunters of lore

Scattered Shots is your weekly guide to improving your Hunter skills, brought to you by Jessica "Lassirra" Klein of The Hunter's Mark, covering a wide variety of Huntery topics. Today, we'll be looking at some prominent historic figures in Hunter lore.

For Hunters looking to get into role playing, a good place to start is to look at the Hunters that came before you to get a feel for common themes upon which you can base your character concept. There are many prominent Hunters in Blizzard lore that spans multiple Warcraft titles, both for the Horde and the Alliance, which you can look to for inspiration. Today, I'd like to spend some time getting to know some of the great Hunters of Azeroth.

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Filed under: Hunter, Lore, Factions, RP, NPCs, (Hunter) Scattered Shots

The OverAchiever: Insane in the Membrane

Most of you are excited for 3.1 so you can start raiding Ulduar, or take advantage of the new class changes. But I know what some of you are on pins and needles for. It's the new title The Insane.

Insane In The Membrane is exactly what it sounds like -- an achievement for people who are completely nuts. To earn this title you must be willing to spend a lot of time destroying and raising obscure factions in Azeroth. I mean a lot of time. It requires that attain the following:

Honored with Bloodsail Buccaneers
Exalted with Everlook
Exalted with Ratchet
Exalted with Booty Bay
Exalted with Gadgetzan
Exalted with Ravenholdt
Exalted with Darkmoon Faire
Exalted with Shen'dralar

Yep.

If you want to get started on this brain-breaking journey, just follow the jump.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Factions, Guides, Wrath of the Lich King, Achievements, The Overachiever

The Care and Feeding of Warriors: Building Up To It


First off, this week's PTR news: basically, nothing new from the last time we talked about it. Arms warriors can pick up Juggernaut now. It's fun. I'm already sick of the macros I'm seeing with it, although I haven't had that much time to do more than charge and then Bladestorm a few mobs just for the laughs. As soon as I get a chance to PvP with the changes I'll tell you if the caster debuff on Overpower from Unrelenting Assault makes any difference.

I get a fair amount of email asking me what target numbers a warrior should be aiming for when he hits 80 and is ready to tank or DPS in instances. It's kind of a hard question because for some stats the best answer is always going to be "as much as you can get" - you're never going to hit a number on stamina where you should be satisfied, you'll always want more and more and more of it. However, there are reasonable suggested minimums for these things, based around what will be possible or impossible to accomplish. A lot of this depends on the folks you find yourself running with, of course. If you're just starting heroics but the healer you'll be running with has best in slot raid epics from all the 25 man content in the game, it's likely he'll trivialize the content to such a degree that you can be significantly lower than normal and still do fine. For those of us who don't have a pocket god coming along to heal our runs, however, you may have to pay attention more to your gearing.

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Filed under: Warrior, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Instances, Factions, Classes, (Warrior) The Care and Feeding of Warriors

Breakfast Topic: Emotes to improve cross faction communication


Some days, I just don't feel like playing my main character, so I hop onto an alt. Before long, I encounter some poor clothie of the opposite faction camping an elite quest mob hoping that someone else will show up and offer to group. Usually, the ground is speckled with skeletons.

Then the dance ensues. I salute, and the Mage waves. The Mage starts /saying things that I don't understand. I shrug. I wait for awhile, hoping that this will signal that I am willing to let the Mage go first. I'm hoping that my politeness infers that I will help.

Finally, I point at the Mage, then at the mob. Taking a leap of faith, the Mage tags it, and I run around behind to help, perhaps with a guildmate at my side.

After our parting farewells, I sit down to await a respawn. Personally, I think it would be much easier if I could say "I'm here to save the day!" or "I come in peace." Of course, there is some charm involved in finding a way to use our current emotes to communicate other messages, especially after Blizz added new ones in 2008.

How do you communicate to a player of the opposite faction messages that aren't directly built-in to emotes? Are you aching for a certain emote that would help you do this, or do you enjoy having to puzzle it out by piecing together existing ones?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics, Factions

Argent Tournament rewards found

MMO Champion has posted some of what are believed to be rewards from the Argent Dawn Tournament coming to the servers, and they are pretty awesome. All of the rewards will apparently be purchased with a new currency called Champion's Seals, and those will be earned from doing dailies, some instanced activity (likely a type of mounted combat -- think PvP-esque, but against mobs), and all of the other various tasks the Argent Dawn is lining up for us. The Tournament itself will appear in 3.1 (and Alex has already posted a great gallery of what it looks like on the PTR), but other activities won't appear until a later content patch.

There are epic weapons for everyone (right now priced at 25 seals, though that may change -- the weapons seem to be a little higher 5-man Heroic level), as well as blue boots, belts, gloves, and neckpieces for most classes and specs (all just 10 seals -- about equivalent to the Revered options the endgame reputations). Additionally, you can get tabards for each faction city (at 50 seals, that seems expensive, but they could have a special proc or ability granted with them), you can buy specially colored faction mounts for 100 seals, and at the top of the heap is an Argent Hippogryph for a whopping 250 seals. Seals, it seems, will also be able to be exchanged for reputation commendations, so if you just want to rep up with a certain old faction rep, you can do that, too.

Pretty enticing. We have yet to see how exactly seals will be earned or how easy they'll be to come by, but it seems like Blizzard is planning to make this a catch-all option for endgame in terms of picking up rep, mounts, or gear. Just like the champion tabards let us choose just how we could earn rep for the endgame factions, the Argent Tournament appears to be a chance for folks at level 80 to pick up whatever rep or options they like by doing whatever the Tourney offers.

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Instances, Factions, Wrath of the Lich King, Arena

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