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Filed under: Undead

Breakfast Topic: Most evil quest in the game

Here's an interesting question: what's the most morally evil quest in the game? There was a quick discussion about the Stanley the Dog quest in Hillsbrad (where you poison and then kill a neutral dog), and it got me thinking: are there any quests in game where you really had a problem with what your character was doing? What's the most evil thing your character has done?

Of course, the definition of evil in this case isn't quite written in stone -- what your character thinks is OK to do may not be what you think is OK to do. My undead Rogue took a lot of pleasure in killing Stanley, even if I would be horrified to hear about someone doing the same thing in real life. But in the same vein, while I was fully convinced in character that setting off that Mana Bomb in Outland was the right thing for my character to do, personally, I thought the kill count was a little shocking. At what point does my hero become a mass murderer?

A few other WoW Insider writers mentioned the Cenarius' Legacy and the other Undead Plague quests to be a little too evil for their tastes. Are there any other quests in the game where your character is asked to do something morally questionable?

Filed under: Undead, Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics, Quests

Breakfast Topic: Architectural wishlist

Lone of Bleeding Hollow asks when we'll see architecture, and immediately, a few other players pop up to shout out my answer: we already saw some Egyptian creatures and styles appear around Ahn'Qiraj. But his request for a specific type of architectural style is an interesting one: is there a kind of architecture you haven't seen in game yet that you'd like to?

A few people say they want to see Asian architecture, and as we pointed out a little while back, Darnassus actually borrows a lot from Eastern architecture. I'd like to see a city or village in World of Warcraft with a Northeastern United States, Cape Cod kind of fishing town feel -- Booty Bay is a nice fishing town, but it's a little too far south for my personal tastes. We are heading north for Wrath, however, and since there are not one but two coastal areas open up there, I might just get my wish. Fans of Viking and Norse architecture will also get their fill in Wrath, I'll bet, and consdering the Forsaken, as Neth says in the thread, are getting their own architecture, Gothic style will also be a highlight.

Are there any styles or cultures that you'd like to see represented in Azeroth that haven't been?

Filed under: Undead, Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Breakfast Topics, NPCs

The most adorable healer ever


Ember on the Shattered Oath (US Emerald Dream-H) forums posted a photo documentary of how she hand-made a teddy bear Priest replica. The bear represents her Undead toon, complete with Staff of Immaculate Recovery. Now, I'm not so sure that I'd cast a teddy bear in the role of an undead anything, but in every other sense, Ember went out of her way to create a legitimate mini-me. She even went so far as to cut off the heads of some Barbie dolls and spray paint them silver to make the shoulder adornments suitably lifelike (undead-like?). The staff even glows in the dark.

She brands her creation with the tag Build-a-Priest, no doubt a nod to others out there. But who knows, she just might be onto something. If she'd make me a teddy bear shaman, I'd pay for it!

[Thanks, Gary Doyle!]

Filed under: Horde, Undead, Priest, Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Fan art

Changes to old Azeroth coming in the next expansion


In the last expansion, all we did was walk through a portal and find a new world -- the old one was left pretty much unchanged overall. But in this coming expansion, Blizzard has made it pretty clear that almost nothing is off limits -- Northrend is getting added to Azeroth, and we're not traveling across space to get there. And considering that Arthas' story echoes throughout almost all of the old world (and that the whole thing is named after him), things are definitely going to change once Northrend appears on the world map.

So we've put together a gallery of just what will be different about the old world after the Wrath of the Lich King comes upon us. To be fair, some are set in stone (we know for sure that Naxxaramas is exiting stage left for a bigger part later), and some are little more than speculation (Uther played a huge part in Arthas' life, so his tomb seems like a good stage for an event at some point), but odds are that by the time we've all reached level 80, all of these places in Old Azeroth will look very different.



Filed under: Human, Night Elves, Undead, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Features, Screenshots, Raiding, Lore, Galleries, Wrath of the Lich King

Arcane Brilliance: Leveling your Mage, 1-20



Every Saturday, Arcane Brilliance freezes you in place, then Blinks behind a pillar and turns Invisible. You can look for Arcane Brilliance if you want to, but I can tell you that's a bad idea. You see, while you're looking, Arcane Brilliance is positioning itself behind you, cooking up a giant Pyroblast and aiming it up your tailpipe. You really only have a few options here. You can a.) cry, b.) curl into the fetal position and wait for the sweet embrace of death, or c.) distract Arcane Brilliance by quickly yelling "Spell damage is more important that spell hit rating, discuss!" and then log out while Arcane Brilliance is busy posting on the forums about what you just said. I'd go with c.), personally. Works every time.


Recently, I discovered that there seem to be leveling guides on this site for just about every class but Mages, so it's time I stepped up to the plate. The problem is, Mage was my very first class, on my very first character, on my very first foray into the World of Warcraft, which took place approximately forever ago. Ok, so it's only been about two-and-a-half years, but in WoW years, that's the rough equivalent of a million kajillion years ago. My memories of those first few levels are fuzzy at best, and I can condense what I remember learning into two statements: "Murlocs are evil," and "The only way out of Undercity is to use my Hearthstone." One of those statements eventually stopped being true for me, and the other one is "Murlocs are evil." Needless to say, I didn't feel entirely qualified to write a leveling guide for the first few levels of Magecraft.

To rectify the situation, I decided to roll a brand new Mage, so that I could experience those first few levels all over again. To ensure that the experience was as pure as I could make it, I created my Mage on a new server--the newest actually--Cairne. I knew nobody on that server, and had no alts there, so this Mage, a Human female I named Niwt, would be an entirely virgin Mage. I had never played an Alliance Mage before, and never leveled any character in the Human starting area, so the quests would be new to me, and the landscape foreign. I disabled all of my mods and dove in.

It was horrible.

I learned a lot though, or remembered learning a lot, depending on how you look at it. After the break, more text!

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Filed under: Human, Gnomes, Undead, Trolls, Mage, Mining, Tips, How-tos, Draenei, Blood Elves, Leveling, Guides, Classes, Making money, Alts, (Mage) Arcane Brilliance

Why all race Death Knights make sense from a lore standpoint

It seems like one of the biggest problems a lot of people have with Death Knights is the fact that they can be all races. Me, I say: Why not? The lore really isn't as bad as you might think. Sure, some of the retcons can get a little annoying, but despite the fact that non-Paladin races will get to be Death Knights, I don't think you really consider it a retcon, but rather an evolution in an ever-evolving story that opens up a lot of great story ideas and RP opportunities, and I'm really looking forward to it.

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Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Human, Night Elves, Dwarves, Gnomes, Orcs, Tauren, Undead, Trolls, Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Blizzard, Expansions, Draenei, Blood Elves, Lore, RP, NPCs, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King

Barrens Chat: First posts make me hungry


Greetings fellow travelers of time and space! Welcome to the first official posting of Barrens Chat, a soon to be weekly implement of random craziness. Although I know I'm not the first comic strip, and likely I wont be the last to grace these glorious virtual pages, I invite you to take a romp with me, Megan, as I drag forth those silly comments people make that they hope no one noticed, and glorify them with fancy colors, and ever-changing art.

I will point out that although all of this is will all be incredibly funny to everyone who reads it, including me; it may end up being a "you had to be there" moment. In that case, come back next week! I'm sure it'll be funnier then. No really, it will.

Gallery: Barrens Chat

Spoiled RottenBubbles bubbles everywhereAlways a catchDead RingerRevolution evolutionAll hands on deck

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Filed under: Horde, Undead, Draenei, Humor, Comics, Barrens Chat

Let us play Broken


One of my favorite quests of all time is Ruse of the Ashtongue, to the point where I won't even turn the quest in no matter how many times we kill Al'ar. The reason I love it? Because it lets me experience what it would be like to switch my main, only not to my ordinary draenei warrior, but rather to a super-awesomely deformed and cool broken. I've always been dreading turning it in and now that we don't have to do so to get keyed for BT, I'm debating waiting until we're done with Tempest Keep once and for all (I could have already completed An Artifact From the Past this past week but I don't want to) just so I can tank as a broken every week.

Frankly, I've always wanted the option to play as a broken from the moment they introduced the draenei as a playable race. If I could, I would switch race to broken in a country minute. I just think they're awesome. The only other race who piques my interest this much are the worgen, and I think they'd look kind of dumb in my gear, but the broken have this whole 'Hulk smash' vibe and I've always liked their voice emotes. "Must not give up... must....remember the light."

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Filed under: Night Elves, Dwarves, Gnomes, Orcs, Tauren, Undead, Analysis / Opinion, Draenei

Best starting race


I've been leveling a few Draenei alts off and on and finally figured out just why it is that I keep rolling the damn things in addition to my beloved Tauren; their starting quests rock. You wake from stasis, meet the locals, save a princess, make early ties to the Alliance and find out why there's a good reason the some of 'em won't trust you right off the bat, discover nefarious deeds afoot, fight a dragon, and then save your people and get a cool tabard. "Find your way back to the Outland, Hero of Argus," Exarch Admetius tells you, in a nice preview of things to come, and Velen has a good lore moment with you shortly afterwards.

Having leveled a toon out of every starting area to at least 20, it's hard not to notice that some areas make it a lot easier than others. I don't mean the general ease of leveling per se, but just how fast the time seems to fly by. For all that a certain percentage of the playerbase frowns on RP on non-RP servers, most peoples' favorite quests do have an element of RP to them, or at least the RP sense of being fully engaged with the world. And in that respect the Draenei starting zones are, in my opinion, unparalleled. If I had to rank them --

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Filed under: Human, Night Elves, Dwarves, Gnomes, Orcs, Tauren, Undead, Trolls, Analysis / Opinion, Quests, Draenei, Blood Elves, Lore, Leveling, Factions, RP, Alts

New WoW TCG wallpaper up


I for one always enjoy looking at the new artwork Blizzard posts. Professionally done, and always a twist to it. Today there's a new piece of TCG artwork on the European site. Featuring a "hot warlock [who] is hot" (as WoW Insider's Mike Schramm put it), she's got a nasty arrow sticking out of her.

Perhaps Blizzard is saying Hunters can kill Warlocks?

Doubtful, I'd just Death Coil.

Filed under: Undead, Hunter, Warlock, Fan art, WoW TCG

Breakfast Topic: Electing a leader for the Horde (Poll)

Yesterday we began the primary election to name a leader for the Alliance . So far it's a close race between Highlord Bolvar Fordragon, King Magni Bronzebeard, and High Priestess Tyrande Whisperwind. Lady Jaina Proudmoore stands out as a highly regarded write-in candidate, and may well win her way to an independent nomination of the final ballot.

Today we stand ready to select a leader over the entire Horde faction. Many have already begun campaigning for Thrall, possibly mistaking him for a member of the Alliance.

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Filed under: Horde, Orcs, Tauren, Undead, Trolls, Polls, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Breakfast Topics, Blood Elves, NPCs

A makeover for Sylvanas in patch 2.4?

If you're a lore freak and a Forsaken fan like I am, you might share one of my biggest pet peeves about the World of Warcraft: Why is Sylvanas Windrunner in a Night Elf Body when she's an undead High Elf? The RPG Books tell us that she is in her old body, which Arthas dug up and let her possess as a reward for her services to the scourge, so she should look like a high elf or a blood elf. Instead, she's just a night elf with gray skin. Most of her other High Elven brothers and sisters got a blood elf skin revamp with the expansion, so it always felt wrong that one of the most famous High Elves of them all was stuck as a lowly Night Elf.

It seems that Blizzard may have finally heard our cries of frustration on this. From tipster Jagoex comes news of a discovery by MMO Champion poster Gurluas: Apparently there are some skins hidden in the patch that look very much like they could be a new look for Sylvanas. The render Gurulas made actually makes her look a bit like a cross between a gray alien and a Blood Elf, but it isn't a bad look for her at all.

At last check, Sylvanas is still bouncing away like a hyperactive cheerleader on the test server, so no word on whether this is really a change for her. If we're lucky, maybe we'll see our new Sylvanas by Wrath of the Lich King, and we can have a proper High Elven Dark Lady we can all be proud of.

Filed under: Night Elves, Undead, Patches, Odds and ends, News items, Blood Elves, Lore, RP, NPCs, Rumors

Arcane Brilliance: A squishy year in review

With so much to look forward to in patch 2.4 and WotLK, Arcane Brilliance would like to take one last look back at the road behind, mostly to see if there's a Rogue back there waiting to stab us. It's a little late, perhaps, but here's a look at the year that was, from a Mage's perspective.

2007 was a splendid year. Someday, when our children's children are grown, we will bore them with stories of 2007, and perhaps refer to it as "back in the day," or "the year I dinged 70," or "the year I learned never to mix chili with microwavable burritos in the hopes that their powers will combine to form 'Chilitos,' the perfect food." Here at Arcane Brilliance, we like to think of it as the "Year of the Mage." We also like to think of 2006 as the "Year of the Mage," and frankly we think of 1902 the same way, so take that in whatever way you wish. Basically we like Mages here, and 2007 was a fun year for those well-versed in wizardry. Not everything was magelicious, though. The highlights--and lowlights--after the jump.

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Filed under: Undead, Mage, Patches, Events, PvP, Expansions, Humor, The Burning Crusade, Classes, BlizzCon, (Mage) Arcane Brilliance, Wrath of the Lich King, Inscription, Arena

Arcane Brilliance: Why we Mage

Hi there! Yes, after a long hiatus, Arcane Brilliance is back. Snack tables all around! Anybody ninjas the biscuits, they get a Fireball in the face. Nah, just kidding. Even ninjas are welcome here. As long as they're mage-ninjas.

I've been a Mage since day one with WoW, and until a few weeks ago I had never really questioned my class choice. I liked the idea of being a caster, a back row fireballer with robes and a pointy hat. When I came over from FFXI I asked my WoW-playing buddy (the aforementioned shammie) which class I should be. He asked what I was into, and I said something like "I want to be a huge caster-tastic wizard in a dress who sets things on fire with his mind. Is there a mage-type class?" He said. "Yes. It's called...Mage." And that was it. I rolled my undead Mage and began conjuring flaming death and croissants. I happily leveled my Mage to 70.

And then...the bubbling, Healthstone-critting warlock happened.

After the jump: Shameful self doubt, soul searching, and finally...sweet redemption! And more Mage-talk.

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Filed under: Undead, Mage, PvP, Features, Humor, Classes, (Mage) Arcane Brilliance, Arena

Around Azeroth: A deep chill in Orgrimmar


Reader Saldemor took his Undead Mage to the gates of Orgrimmar and did what he does best: let loose with a Cone of Cold. Ok, he probably does other things better. Like making things dead quick. And preparing delicious banquet tables of handcrafted breads and home-brewed drinks. And pulling too much aggro before the tank can lock down the mob. But hey, at least with this, he looks good doing it.

Do you have any unusual World of Warcraft images that are just collecting dust in your screenshots folder? Because we'd love to see it on Around Azeroth! Sharing your screenshot is as simple as e-mailing aroundazeroth@wow.com 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. We prefer full screen shots without the UI showing. And please, no more sunsets. No, really.

Filed under: Undead, Mage, Screenshots, Around Azeroth

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