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BlizzCon 2011 tickets on sale May 21 and 25


Blizzard has announced via the BlizzCon site that tickets for BlizzCon 2011 will be available for purchase in two batches: once on May 21 at 10 a.m. Pacific time, and a second time on May 25 at 7 p.m. Pacific time. The price has increased (again) to $175 per ticket. Virtual tickets will be available for $39.95, the same as last year.

Those wishing to attend the charity dinner can do so by purchasing the $500 ticket at Saturday, May 28 at 10 a.m. Pacific time.

[EDIT: May 25th ticket sales start at 7 p.m. PT, not 7 a.m. PT.]

Filed under: BlizzCon

Reader UI of the Week: Simple symmetry and Wavelength's UI

Each week, WoW Insider brings you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which spotlights the latest user interface addons. Have a screenshot of your own UI that you'd like to submit? Send your screenshots along with info on what mods you're using to readerui@wowinsider.com.

If Reader UI had a theme song, what would it be? According to my play list while writing (and for those of you who follow me on Twitter), you know it's probably one of the songs that appears on my Aqua play list on Pandora. So with that in mind, you can pretty much guess my mental state while putting together Reader UI of the Week.

This week, I wanted to go with another smaller UI, something that feels laptop or low-res focuses, while still keeping things nice and neat. A few weeks back, I said that I wanted to categorize the reader UIs that I spotlight in order to better facilitate the information that people could gain from the articles. Well, I've finally figured out my little system. Wavelength's UI is the first to be hit with my super category system!

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Reader UI of the Week

Shifting Perspectives: Tanks, bribes, and player behavior

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. This Tuesday, we are not sure if we can be bribed.

As most of you are probably aware, Blizzard recently announced a new incentive structure for the dungeon finder system called the Call to Arms. In essence, it rewards players for performing what is then the most-needed role in the dungeon finder with a BoA bag containing gold, flasks, and, potentially, mounts and pets.

The Tuesday Shifting column covers the two roles most likely to receive the "goodie bags" -- tanking and healing (I don't think anyone's laboring under the delusion that groups can't get off the ground due to a lack of DPS) -- and the ensuing firestorm on the forums caught my eye. Predictably, players have mixed feelings about the change. Many (I think correctly) blame players' rudeness and uncooperative attitudes for driving off the tank population, but even more are indignant that Blizzard is "bribing" tanks for something they feel should have been addressed by role redesign.

Examine all the arguments in their totality, and I think there's only one real conclusion: I don't believe that Blizzard failed in its effort to make tanking more interesting and enjoyable.

I do believe that developers are struggling to deal with a problem created and driven almost entirely by player behavior. Modern heroics aren't fun, not because the content is bad (it's not) or overtuned (it's fine), but Cataclysm combines parts of The Burning Crusade and Wrath of the Lich King 5-man experience that don't play well with each other. The dungeon finder contributes to these problems, but not in the way that you'd think.

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Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives, Death Knight

Blizzard and Epic Weapons' weaponsmithing fan art contest winners announced

Blizzard and Epic Weapons' weaponsmithing fan art contest tasked talented WoW enthusiasts with crafting and building life-size replicas of their favorite World of Warcraft weapons. Categories included Best Dagger, Best Mace, Best Sword, Best Ranged, and Best of the Rest. The entries are phenomenal, but that's a given for how talented the WoW playerbase is.

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Filed under: Blizzard, Contests, Arts and Crafts

MMO Roundup: Mass Effect MMO, MOBAs, and more

Sometimes you'd like to know that there are other MMOs out there, right? It's not all WoW, all the time! Our sister site Massively can provide you with everything you need to know about all of the other MMOs around -- past, present and future.
Mass Effect the MMO?
Could Mass Effect be an MMO? In a recent interview with Game Informer, Executive Producer Casey Hudson of BioWare says that the intellectual property makes sense for an MMO.
The Old Republic dev blog talks advanced classes
Ready for more Star Wars: The Old Republic information? BioWare's Georg Zoeller is happy to oblige via his new dev blog that focuses on TOR's advanced classes. His previous entry laid the groundwork, whereas the most recent blog is all about the details.
CNN looks at RIFT's server technology
MMORPGs don't get much virtual ink on the world's top news sites, and when they do, it's usually because someone's died during a grind session. RIFT recently bucked that trend with a lengthy spread on CNN.com and, somewhat predictably, the initial focus is on the "battle" between Trion's upstart and Blizzard's World of Warcraft behemoth.
Exploring the lands of MOBA
It's sometimes hard to believe that MMOs and online gaming in its current form are both relatively new. In a single generation, online gaming has gone from a technical infeasibility to a global industry worth billions. The list of MMOs is constantly growing, and the line between MMOs and other online games blurs more every year. Head over to Massively to learn about MOBAs, or Multiplayer Online Battle Arenas.
Massively Speaking episode 143
Massively Speaking, Massively's MMO podcast, returns to your regularly scheduled programming this week as Shawn and Rubi discuss the week's MMO news. Topics include fixing Earthrise, expanding Mortal Online and DC Universe Online, and SOE's mass layoffs.
Massively's week in review
Don't let WoW Insider do all of the talking when it comes to Massively's best content of the week. The Massively staff themselves have picked out what they think is the best content their site has to offer in their own weekly roundup.

Filed under: MMO Roundup

WoW Insider's Weekly Webcomic: Safe Passage

Welcome to another edition of WoW Insider's Weekly Comic, Safe Passage.

They say the pen is mightier than the sword. In this case, it's a quill, but you get the idea. Just what are they doing, anyways?

... As for where she pulled the satchel out from? The same spandex space all WoW characters have.

Check out the full comic right here, and tune in next Tuesday morning for a new page. You can also see all the previous pages in the gallery below.

Gallery: Safe Passage

Filed under: WoW Insider's Weekly Comic

WoW Moviewatch: How to Win At Achievements

I was actually kind of surprised to discover that the sultan of sarcasm, Wowcrendor, hadn't already covered the subject of cheevos in his "How to Win" series. How to Win At Achievements takes a long, meaningful look at these silly little side quests in WoW.

Achievements are an odd feature in game. They really really matter to some people, or they don't matter at all. They certainly can be incredibly frustrating, especially if you're trying to get a cheevo done with a PUG.

There are two important character development notes from How to Win At Achievements. First, note that Billy has quickly and adeptly understood the point of the video. Bill's getting smarter. Soon, like Skynet, he will gain self-awareness and take over the world. Second, we have the addition of a new character: the Grats Cow. We'll have to see how these things develop in the future.

Interested in the wide world of machinima? We have new movies every weekday here on WoW Moviewatch! Have suggestions for machinima we ought to feature? Toss us an email at moviewatch@wowinsider.com.

Filed under: WoW Moviewatch

The Queue: In which Jeff Kaplan is a troll and makes Ensidia cry

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft.

We're gonna get right into it today, because I found myself opining over a single question. And honestly? I'm pleased with my answer.

There, I said it.

I want my cookie.

Zayd asked:

What, in your collective opinion, is the bravest decision Blizzard has made in regards to World of Warcraft?

Read more →

Filed under: The Queue

Around Azeroth: Cave in

I don't know why, but I find this picture really depressing. Being trapped underground with no hope of rescue is one of the most frightening things I can think of. (I blame this book.) Prayers won't save you, lady! Just hearth out! Thanks to Danny for the screenshot.

Want to see your own screenshot here? Send it to aroundazeroth@wowinsider.com. We strongly prefer full-sized pictures with no UI or names showing. Please include "Azeroth" in the subject line so your email doesn't get marked as spam, and include your name, guild and server if you want to be credited.

Filed under: Around Azeroth

The WoW Insider Show Episode 189: Wherein Rossi is called to arms

Every week, join us as we present you with the WoW Insider Show podcast -- an hour's worth of WoW community discussion covering everything from the week's top stories here on WoW Insider to emails from our readers and what's been going on with our particular characters in Azeroth.

Today's show discusses:
  • Matt Rossi
  • Call to Arms
  • PTR updates
  • Karazhan Crypt and the WoW Archivist
  • Reader emails
Want to have your question answered on the air? Email theshow@wowinsider.com!

Get the podcast:

[iTunes] Subscribe to the WoW Insider Show directly in iTunes.
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[MP3] Download the MP3 directly.

Listen here on the page:


Filed under: Podcasts, WoW Insider Show

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