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Spiritual Guidance: Holy 101


Every Sunday (and the occasional weekday) Spiritual Guidance offers holy and discipline priests advice on how to wield the holy light and groove to the disco night. Your hostess Dawn Moore will provide the music.

There is this priest trial in my guild right now. He applied as a discipline priest but what we were looking for at the time was a holy priest. Unfortunately, he doesn't know how to play holy, so I'm exploiting my veteran status and making him learn it. Coincidentally, the big bosses also want all of us here at WoW.com to work on these 101 columns, so this kills two anything-but-birds with one stone. I really like birds, by the way.

The following is meant to be an introductory guide to the priest holy tree. It is not going to tell you what to do step by step (at least not until you get to the enchants section) instead it intends to show you some options from which you can get started. If you're already a veteran holy priest, feel free to add anything I left out in the comments so readers who use this column as a resource can get as much help as possible.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

All the World's a Stage: You can't be a vampire

It's not my goal to discuss whether or not there are actually vampires in WoW. The Crimson Halls certainly seems to support the idea that the Cullen-crowd can get their bite on in Azeroth, maybe even cuddled up against the vampire LARPers. But even with the Sanlayn rocking the vampire thing in Northrend, there still aren't any playable vampires in WoW. (Blood death knights are arguably similar, but they still don't sprout fangs and lay the nom down on unsuspecting victims.)

Yet, people still yearn to play vampires. It happens. And I don't actually mind people playing these type of characters in the free-form style roleplay you see in Goldshire and Silvermoon, because that tends to be the sort of place where anything goes. And I'll admit. In a former life I've LARPed a vampire.

But in troupe-style roleplay, there are usually particular character conventions. A roleplay guild focused on defending Ashenvale from the encroaching Horde, for example, would have some trouble accepting a Draenei Shaman who is actually roleplaying an apologetic ex-Eredar making amends for his crimes.

It falls on the leaders of these troupes and guilds, therefore, to talk to the person playing an outside-the-box character. You don't want to just leave your junior vampire going down a bad track, leaving him without folks with whom to roleplay. Even worse, it can lead to backbiting, disruption in the troupe, and other negative things. Roleplay groups are fragile enough -- don't leave a wingman hanging, when you can help them with the trouble.

Take a look behind the jump, and let's see how you can help bring an Edward Cullen back into Azeroth, while still making everyone as happy as possible.

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Filed under: RP, All the World's a Stage (Roleplaying)

[1.Local]: An Ensidia-free zone

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.

Grab a cushion, flop down and give your weary dogs (puppies?) a rest. The photo above notwithstanding, rest assured that the rest of [1.Local] this week is an Ensidia-free zone. (So is the world-first 25-man Lich King kill, for that matter.) Can you imagine having to hash that out yet again? What a relief that [1.Local] isn't merely a tally sheet for comments from stories with the most views -- or even the stories with the most comments, or the most positive comments, or (as comment trolls hold fast to believing) the most negative comments ... We can follow our own little quirky path through the conversation of the past week.

Let's bite into the rest of this week's goodies just like we all like it: nice and meaty, with a little bit of hot, runny juices from the odd little beasts we discovered just down yonder, off the beaten track...

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, [1.Local]

The Light and How to Swing It: Essential addons and macros for holy

Every Sunday, Chase Christian of The Light and How to Swing It invites you to discuss the finer side of the paladin class: the holy specialization. This week, we examine the addons and macros that can be used to make your life easier.

Holy paladins have come a long way since our days in vanilla WoW. Back then, we were a three button class: Cleanse, Flash of Light, Holy Light. The infamous addon Decursive even did all the dispelling for us, leave the human user simply casting Flash or HL for hours on end. Seals and Judgments were for retribution and protection: we were standing 40 yards away filling up life bars. Things didn't improve much in TBC either: while Holy Shock was fun to finally use, we ended up being purely FoL bots in most raid situations.

Blizzard took a new approach to healing in Wrath, including completely revamping each existing healing tree to make sure each one was balanced, viable, and most importantly, enjoyable. Holy paladins now enjoy a complexity that is multiple times more entertaining to play than anything that we've seen in the past. However, with this added functionality comes added complexity. To help us lighten the load, we can use a few amazing addons and macros manage our "holy 3.0" paladins; this allows us to focus on keeping people alive.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

Love is in the Air achievements retroactive?


If you were like me and had the wonderful fortune last year to complete the Love is in the Air meta-achievement Fool for Love, there is some interesting news for you. Upon logging on this morning I noticed that the achievements for Charming, Nation of Adoration, and Dangerous Love were completed for me on the date I had originally earned the meta-achievement, last year. Is this a bug or Blizzard's way of allowing those of us who already completed the meta-achievement to not worry about the new holiday tasks?

We would love some more confirmation from people who completed the Fool for Love meta-achievement last year, but at this moment, it seems like we have a little less work to do this holiday season. More love rockets for me to annoy my raids with...

Sunday Morning Funnies: Epic win

First of all, I would like to congratulate Keyra for winning the virtual cookies! This batch is vegan upon request, comes with a nice tall glass of cold soy milk, and I'll even throw in some fresh berries. Khloe Kardashian was the right answer to last week's impromptu trivia question!

Watch out for this week's trivia question, buried in amongst the comics.

Unfortunately, I didn't receive any new comic tips, but I don't think you'll be disappointed!

On a side note, I feel very lucky that photographing one's collection of My Little Ponies is a relatively popular occurrence, for how else would I have found such a lovely epic pony? I had more to choose from than I would have imagined, but I finally narrowed it down to the lucky pony on the right.

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Filed under: Humor, Comics, Sunday Morning Funnies

Around Azeroth: Goodbye, cool world

This screenshot is the last remaining image of the infamous ice mage David. It was taken on Saturday, shortly before he was beaten into unconsciousness by enraged, frozen residents of Washington, DC. His limp body was then levitated to the top of the Washington Monument and displayed as a warning to any further bringers of blizzards.

Do you have any unusual, beautiful or interesting World of Warcraft images that are just collecting dust in your screenshots folder? We'd love to see them 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. Please include the word "Azeroth" in your post so it does not get swept into the spam bin. We strongly prefer full screen shots without the UI showing -- use alt-Z to remove it. Please, no more battleground scoreboards, Val'kyr on mounts, or pictures of the Ninja Turtles in Dalaran. Older screenshots can be found here.

Gallery: Around Azeroth

Filed under: Around Azeroth

New seasonal vanity pet, the Toxic Wasteling


Vanity pet collectors, rejoice! The Crown Chemical Co. apothecaries not only drop some pretty nice necklaces, they're also the source of a new vanity pet, the Toxic Wasteling. You may think this looks a lot like the Disgusting Oozeling, but there's a major difference -- rather than a debuff applied to your character, the Wasteling is a hungry little guy. So hungry in fact, that he'll eat random critters, and as he does, he grows in size.

Check out the video to see the Toxic Wasteling in action -- and for those pet collectors wondering about the Truesilver Shafted Arrow for the Perma-Peddle achievement, he's now available on holiday vendors for the low price of 40 Love Tokens.

Filed under: Events

Breakfast Topic: What are your plans for Love Is In the Air?

The yearly holiday Love Is In the Air went live today, and with it a host of new features -- a new boss in Shadowfang Keep, several revamped achievements, and overall a lot of spit-and-polish on a holiday that had been extremely frustrating to many players in 2009. Last year, your ability to get the meta Fool For Love done was entirely dependent on dumb luck over a 5-day period. Blizzard's looking to blunt the impact of RNG this time around by extending the holiday and introducing a much less painful means of getting the achievements.

So what are your plans for Love Is In the Air? Does your main already have the meta from last year, or were you among the unlucky souls doomed to keep getting the same candy drops? Are you planning on hitting the new boss in Shadowfang Keep? And are you, like me, just ecstatic that you don't have to spend days hoping for a Peddlefeet pet to drop?

Note: A few of us were around as soon as the holiday went live, and our FAQ on Love Is In the Air and OverAchiever on the holiday's achievements have now been updated to reflect the 2010 event. They'll be expanded later today with more information on the holiday questline and the new Shadowfang Keep encounter.

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

Tough Love: How to kill the Crown Chemical Co. apothecaries

Update: We've added an overhead video to help you understand how the immunities work. Now, back to your regularly scheduled strategy guide.

Want to do the Love is in the Air holiday bosses? Short version: don't stand in things.

Longer version, you say? Sure, we can do that. First off, while there is a quest chain that leads you to Shadowfang Keep, you do not have to have done any of those quests to engage the evil Crown Chemical Company apothecaries: there's a helpful NPC, Investigator Fezzen Brasstacks who will give you the quest and items necessary for the fight. Like previous holiday bosses, you'll be able to engage the apothecaries once per player so yes, you can chain in alts and keep repeating the fight over and over again. (I believe we killed them roughly eight times before people started getting sleepy.)

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Filed under: Events