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Filed under: Hardware

Razer Naga now supports key mapping

As previously mentioned in our lengthy review of the Razer Naga, Razer had plans to update their 17-button MMOG-centric mouse to enable key mapping. Heathcliff Hatcher from Razer responded to concerns about the mouse's configurability back then that "software driver remapping of keys is a standard function for most of Razer products and we do have suitable solutions that we intend to release in the near future for Naga that will enable this feature out of game."

Razer delivered on that promise with an update to the mouse driver, allowing users to configure all 17 buttons. This addresses the reservations many players expressed when the product launched in August last year. The driver update also supports different profiles, allowing users to configure different key functions according to their current application. Razer has also added full macro capability including timed delays between keystrokes. However, it should be noted that taking advantage of this last function might violate the World of Warcraft's terms of use, something that plagued the first versions of Steelseries' World of Warcraft mouse. Read the FAQ regarding the driver update after the break.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Hardware

Congrats to our Creative headset winners

A couple of weeks ago, we announced a huge contest with Creative to give away twenty-five of their new World of Warcraft wireless headsets, one for each person in one big lucky raid. That contest has been over for a little bit, and we've finally picked a winner: congrats to all of the winners in the guild Rusty Blades on Cenarion Circle! They, along with the nine random winners in each of our single headset giveaways, as well as the lucky winners in the five man contest (who've all been contacted and confirmed) will all get their very own units when the headsets are finally released later on this month.

And if you didn't win, don't worry -- Creative will of course be selling the headsets, so you can make sure to put them on your Christmas list, and maybe a loved one will help you out. The latest that we've heard is that they're still due out for release sometime this month, so stay tuned and when we know more about the release, you will too. Since our 25-man contest was actually a bit of a trivia contest as well (guilds had to find five locations in-game and then take pictures at each place), we've put the Rusty Blades' excellent answers after the break. Hopefully you haven't been wondering desperately about the answers for the last month but in case you were, there you go.

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Filed under: Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Contests, Screenshots, Galleries, Hardware

TurpsterVision: Hands on with Chen Stormstout

We can't believe it either – Turpster has been let loose on WoW.com to bring you videos from in and around the World of Warcraft! You've heard him on the WoW Insider Show, and now see him on TurpsterVision right here on WoW.com.

So it's Black Friday for a lot of you guys out there -- Happy Thanksgiving for yesterday and yes, my Turkey was awesome thanks for asking! A day for picking up electrical bargains and stopping The Intersect falling into Fulcrum's hands -- I'll be honest, my knowledge of Black Friday stems pretty much directly from episodes of Chuck. I was lucky enough to have my latest purchase come through today and I am super stoked to be able to show you guys, Chen Stormstout!

This guys is many kinds of huge -- some say he looks like a fat Gene Simmons, I don't see that being a bad thing since The Demon is also pretty awesome (though he's no Starchild). Standing over 8" tall and weighing in at 4.5 lbs, this guy is built to impress. The detailing is beyond anything I've seen on my previous DC Unlimited figures.

Enjoy the video and pick one up if you haven't already -- I wonder how much mine is worth now that it's out of the box...

Check out more of Turpster's work, recent work like sites made for a Bristol Garden Landscaper or classic stuff from his WoW parody songs to TV previously on Massively.com, not forgetting everyone's favorite podcast 'The WoW Insider Show' and of course, TurpsterVision right here on WoW.com!

Filed under: Blizzard, Features, Hardware, TurpsterVision

FigurePets mark WoW's 5th Birthday Spyro style

I love FigurePrints and this has been widely documented. I stare at my FigurePrint of Turpster a hundred times a day. A model? Not just a model, but a FigurePrint. Handmade in Italy, they carve it out of illegal whalebone. They only make eleven of them a year. This one cost me $12,000 or 30 million liras. Perfectly balanced, low drag, minimal torque. (Please note: FigurePrints aren't constructed from illegal whalebone, nor do they cost $12,000 (only $129.95/€99.95) but Turpster's been watching far too many Will Farrell films lately.) No exaggeration, I could not love a human baby as much as I love my miniature real life version of my favorite fantasy Warcraft character.

The folks over at FigurePrints and FigurePets are introducing some great new products and features to coincide with WoW's 5th Anniversary. You'll find all of the new features now available on their site after the break.

They include:

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Filed under: Odds and ends, Hardware

WoW 5th Anniversary Giveaway: 5 Razer Naga gaming mice

WoW.com continues to celebrate all that is wonderful and majestic about World of Warcraft's 5 year anniversary by giving away more stuff! This time it's the ultrasleek Naga gaming mouse from Razer. This bad boy has 17 programmable buttons, it's own AddOn program and a hotness that can't be denied. We've written a full hands-on review of this product last month. And now we're giving away 5 of these little beauties. Here's how can enter for a chance to win.

The contest is open to legal residents of the 50 United States, the District of Columbia, and Canada (excluding Quebec), and everyone who enters must be 18 or older. To enter, leave a comment on this post before Wednesday, November 25th, at 12p ET (noon), and please be sure to use a real email that you check often to enter, so we can contact you should you be one of the winners. You may enter only once and five winners will be selected randomly. Each winner will receive 1 Razer Naga MMOG Laser Gaming Mouse with a retail value of US$80. Click here to read the official contest rules.

If you don't qualify for this contest, be sure to enter today's Loot card giveaway and look for more WoW.com giveaways tomorrow!

EDIT: Contest closed. Thanks so much for participating!

Filed under: Contests, Hardware

Breakfast Topic: How many of you play on a Mac?

This was a reader suggestion, and a good one: Zvonimir wants to know how many of us WoW players use a Mac to play the game. Blizzard has steadfastly put out Mac and Windows versions of all their games ever since the original Warcraft, but this is not at all the norm in the industry. There are only a few other major MMOs I can think of that even have official Mac versions (EVE, Warhammer, City of Heroes, um...anything else?). Sure, we can always run some sort of virtualization (like Crossover Games, which supports WoW on Linux) or Boot Camp, but that's just less awesome than running something in your regular OS.

Anyway, here's the question for today: what platform do you usually use to play WoW?

What platform do you play WoW on?
Windows16183 (69.6%)
Mac6555 (28.2%)
Linux498 (2.1%)


Please no flaming in the comments. This is not a "which is better, Mac or Windows" poll. Inappropriate comments will be gladly deleted.

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Hardware

Blizzard: Arenas were a mistake.

John Funk of WarCry recently interviewed Blizzard's VP of Game Design, Rob Pardo, about WoW's five-year anniversary, and he shed some light on a number of topics, including their total subscriber numbers (twice to three times as much as its current 12 million), what audience their new MMO is meant for, and what he thinks WoW's greatest successes were. But some other very interesting information came up when the interviewer asked what he thought WoW's biggest mistakes were.

He begins by saying that he wishes that the servers had been more stable at launch, and that there had been more of them, but he says that in terms of design, Arenas were the single biggest mistake in WoW's history.

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Filed under: The Burning Crusade, Wrath of the Lich King, Arena, Hardware

Fixing raiding lag

There is quite a thread going around with some ideas about how to fix raiding lag. Lag, like many cross-computer issues, is a pretty complicated thing -- there's all kinds of reasons it could be happening, from errors on your computer to errors on Blizzard's end, and all the little connections and switches in between. A certain amount of lag is unavoidable. But there are certainly some things you can do to make sure the link between your client and Blizzard's server is working at its best. This thread, which started on the EJ forums and then moved on to Livejournal, has some good tips in it, including turning off most combat logs like Recount and even Blizzard's official "Everything" log -- having to write down everything happening in game does cost some computer time as you play. Blocking addon "spam" is another way to keep things simple and clear -- while lots of useful addons help you share information between raid members, sending that info back and forth can cause problems when you're down to milliseconds of lag.

The final suggestion is to run a third-party program that's supposed to keep your latency high, but I would be leery of doing that -- a better solution if you continue to have high latency constantly, even after making the changes above, would be to go to Blizzard (and/or your Internet Service Provider, or ISP) with your issues. They have a good guide to smoothing out your connection, and many times the problem can be with your router or firewall, which is usually a quick fix.

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Filed under: Guilds, Blizzard, Instances, Raiding, Hardware

Razer giving away Nagas and WoW steins on Facebook

Peripherals manufacturer Razer has partnered with Taverncraft to give away a Razer Naga MMO gaming mouse and a Charge of the Great Dragonflights World of Warcraft stein to two lucky fans on Facebook. Those interested to participate in the contest must have a Facebook account and become a fan of the Razer page in order to submit an entry. Razer lists three simple steps in order to join:
  • Select your preferred beverage of choice while you game
  • Select your game of choice (presumably World of Warcraft)
  • Take a picture of you owning it up while holding said beverage
Deadline for submission of entries is on November 17, with a limit of one entry per person. The Charge of the Great Dragonflights stein, which debuted at BlizzCon last August, retails for $89.99 and features artwork from artist James Zhang on fine-grain stoneware with a solid pewter lid. The Razer Naga also appeared at BlizzCon and retails for $79.99. WoW.com did a full review of the 17-button mouse aimed specifically at MMOG players back in October.

Filed under: Fan stuff, Contests, Hardware

Last chance to enter to win a Creative headset of your own

This is finally it -- your last chance as a single commenter to pick yourself up a Creative World of Warcraft wireless gaming headset. We've been giving one of these away every single week for a few months now, and today we've finally run out of the single headsets, so here's your last chance to leave a comment on this post and win one on your own.

As usual, the contest is open to legal residents of the 50 United States, the District of Columbia, and Canada (excluding Quebec), and everyone who enters must be 13 or older. To enter, leave a comment on this post before Wednesday, November 18th, at midnight eastern, and please be sure to use a real email that you check often to enter, so we can contact the winners when we choose them. One winner will be chosen. You may enter only once, and each winner will get a Creative World of Warcraft Wireless Gaming Headset, with a retail value of $150. Please note: winners will not receive the headset until it is released later this year. Click here to read the official contest rules.

Good luck -- oh, and are you wondering why we said "single headset"? Because we will have yet another contest next week, but it'll be more of a "group quest" kind of thing, where you and some friends will have a chance to win a raid full of headsets for yourselves. Stay tuned for more info in one week's time.

Filed under: Odds and ends, Contests, Hardware

WoW Fifth Anniversary Sweepstakes

If you're a resident of the United States, Canada, or New Zealand, kindly whack yourself on the head as a show of solidarity for other players who don't qualify for the World of Warcraft Five Year Anniversary Sweepstakes. If you are a resident of the aforementioned countries or are some Asian or European or Other-Unqualified-Country-an willing to subject themselves to a little geek envy, then read on. Our favorite game turns five this November 23, 2009, and to celebrate, Blizzard is giving away a whole bunch of swag every week for the next four weeks.

Essentially, as long as you're a player whose account is active when they pull your name out of a kodo-skin hat and hasn't gotten into trouble for breaking the EULA, you're automatically entered in the sweepstakes. Players qualify for certain prizes depending on how long they've been playing the game. Check out the list of prizes and player eligibility after the jump.

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Filed under: Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Contests, Hardware

Enter to win a Creative WoW headset of your own

Yes, it's time once again to award one of you with the soon-to-be coolest gaming headset around just for performing the not-so-arduous task of... leaving a comment on this post. Commenting on a blog probably isn't your job (though most of you probably do it at your job -- no comment about that), but it could score you some nice swag anyway today, in the form of the beautiful Creative World of Warcraft wireless gaming headset.

As usual, the contest is open to legal residents of the 50 United States, the District of Columbia, and Canada (excluding Quebec), and everyone who enters must be 13 or older. To enter, leave a comment on this post before Wednesday, November 11th, at midnight eastern, and please be sure to use a real email that you check often to enter, so we can contact the winners when we choose them. One winner will be chosen. You may enter only once, and each winner will get a Creative World of Warcraft Wireless Gaming Headset, with a retail value of $150. Please note: winners will not receive the headset until it is released later this year. Click here to read the official contest rules.

Good luck as always! And don't forget, whatever you do, to stay tuned, as next week we'll be giving away yet another headset. So even if you don't win this week, you've still got a few chances left.

Filed under: Contests, Hardware

Blizzard files lawsuit against private server

We've talked about private servers on the site here before, but in case you haven't heard the term: they're unofficial servers, very much against WoW's Terms of Use, that are run by companies other than Blizzard. They're shady as get out -- some make you pay (and these are not people you'd ever want to give any credit card information to), some will delete or change characters on a regular basis, and many times they're created just so whoever's running them can mess around with GM powers, and cheat with any items they want.

So you can see why Blizzard would want them shut down, and that's exactly what they're trying to do with this lawsuit filed in the California Central District Court against a company called "Scapegaming" that runs at least one private WoW server (and they've apparently been running microtransactions in-game -- selling in-game items for "donations" of money). The law firm working for Blizzard, Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal, also worked on the "Bnetd" case, which was another piece of unofficial server software that allowed players to play off of Blizzard's Battle.net setup.

The complaint lists copyright infringement as the cause, which means they're probably using the same argument targeted at other private servers in the past. We'll keep an eye on this, but it's very likely Blizzard will win this one unopposed, and Scapegaming (or at least just their WoW server) will get shut down for good.

Thanks, Phenom!

Filed under: Realm Status, Blizzard, News items, Hardware

SteelSeries WoW mouse gets new functionality

Long after its initial release, which saw the mouse come under fire for its dubious EULA-breaking built-in functionality, WoWVault at IGN reports that the Steelseries World of Warcraft mouse has received a functional upgrade in that players can now "bind all 15 buttons without leaving the game." Patch 3.2.2 introduced a new interface for the mouse, which allows for the creation and customization of macros and key bindings from within the game, and assigned to different character profiles. The game now recognizes the mouse buttons as completely new and unique buttons, adding more buttons to augment players' normal keyboard buttons.

This should make the mouse completely usable out of the box for all players without fear of breaking the game's end-user policies, as opposed to how it was when it first shipped as it took advantage of disallowed automated and timed scripts. The Steelseries website notes that players can "achieve faster response time(s) by customizing (their) mouse setup in-game and thereby removing a layer of software." It was this "layer of software" outside the game that delivered commands to the mouse and conflicted with the game's policies. So fear not, players! The Steelseries WoW mouse is now completely EULA-compliant! I mean, it still kind of looks like a robotic turtle, but at least it won't get you banned from the game anymore.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Hardware

Enter to win your own Creative WoW Wireless headset

Hey, you, reading this blog. You like playing World of Warcraft? You like listening to the sounds of the game as you do it? You got ears and a distinct predilection for playing in either the Horde or Alliance faction? Then boy do we have a headset for you: the Creative World of Warcraft Wireless gaming headset is going to be the hottest thing you can put on your head since the trucker hat, and here's your chance to win one by commenting on this very post.

As usual, the contest is open to legal residents of the 50 United States, the District of Columbia, and Canada (excluding Quebec), and everyone who enters must be 13 or older. To enter, leave a comment on this post before Wednesday, October 21st, at midnight eastern, and please be sure to use a real email that you check often to enter, so we can contact the winners when we choose them. You may enter only once, and each winner will get a Creative World of Warcraft Wireless Gaming Headset, with a retail value of $150. Please note: winners will not receive the headset until it is released later this year. Click here to read the official contest rules.

Good luck to you all! And don't forget, if you want to win five of these things, there's only one day left in our five-man contest. Just by submitting a shot of your group, you can pick up five headsets, one for every group member. That one ends tomorrow, so get your entry out ASAP!

Filed under: Items, Odds and ends, Contests, Hardware

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