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Posts with tag Red-Dragonflight

Know Your Lore: Cataclysm for Dummies, Act II

The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how -- but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.

So, Act I of our Cataclysm for Dummies guide went over the basics of Cataclysm -- how it came to be, just who that Deathwing guy is, anyway, and why he's so annoyed with the world in general. We also found out why we're going to all those new level 80 to 85 zones and, more importantly, why we're wandering around in three different raids in three completely different locations around the world. If you made it through the basics, congratulations! You're caught up through patch 4.0.

But we're in patch 4.3, aren't we? And you've probably still got questions. Questions like: What's up with the troll dungeons -- didn't we kill those guys already? And why did we have to go fight Ragnaros again? Why is Thrall friendly as all get-out with the Dragon Aspects? Why do we have to do all this silly time travel? The good news is, by the time you're done reading this guide, you'll totally understand what Cataclysm is all about.

Please note: There are spoilers here for the novel Thrall: Twilight of the Aspects. If you're still planning on reading it, you may want to do so before you hit this recap.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Know Your Lore: Wrathion the Purified

The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how -- but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.

While we've been busy putting Cho'gall in his place, dealing with Nefarian, and otherwise addressing Elemental Lords Al'Akir and Ragnaros, the rest of Azeroth has been busy in its own way. Players wandering through the Badlands are taken along on quests to help the red dragon Rheastrasza perform a bit of important research on the black dragons. Though at first it seems as though Rhea's work is mundane, her ultimate plans are soon revealed.

Rheastrasza is attempting to find one purified, untainted black dragon egg. And she's successful, but the egg is in immediate danger. Deathwing doesn't want this egg to exist, and he'll do anything to get rid of it. The egg has been shuffled around constantly, hidden from Deathwing's sight -- a faint shred of hope in the post-Cataclysm world.

... unfortunately, nobody bothered asking the egg's opinion on the subject.

Today's Know Your Lore contains spoilers for the rogue legendary quest line.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Know Your Lore: The Wyrmrest Accord and the order of the world

The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how -- but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.

The dragonflights may have been created at the same time, but for the thousands of years they've existed on Azeroth, they've hardly been friendly with one another. It started with the Black Dragonflight and Neltharion's betrayal during the War of the Ancients. In the moment that Neltharion took the name Deathwing, in the moments thereafter during which he destroyed nearly all of the Blue Dragonflight with the Demon Soul -- in those moments, the dragonflights were introduced to a new concept: deception. It was unthinkable that any dragon would deliberately seek to harm another, and yet it happened.

The fallout was immediate. Malygos, driven mad by the betrayal of one of his closest friends and the loss of his flight, fled to Northrend. In his madness, he split the Nexus from the rest of the land, separating Coldarra from the rest of the Borean Tundra. And then he stayed there, alone in his despair and insanity, refusing all visitors in his grief. The Blue Dragonflight crumpled, held up only by those who stood and tried their best to hold together the shattered remnants of the flight.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

WoW Insider reviews Christie Golden's Thrall: Twilight of the Aspects

Just under 10 years ago, on Oct. 1, 2001, a novel was released as a new addition to the Warcraft universe that would change the history and lore of the games forever. Lord of the Clans outlined the history and childhood of a young orc named Thrall. Son of Durotan and Draka, the former slave would break free from his imprisonment at the hands of Aedelas Blackmoore, step forward to unite the shattered and lethargic clans of the orcs, and lead the Horde in a manner that none that had played the original Warcraft games could possibly comprehend at that point in time.

Almost a year later, Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos was released, and that orc's journey from the beleaguered, Scourge-ridden lands of the Eastern Kingdoms to the dusty and barren shores of Kalimdor was told in a tale that captured the hearts of players. No longer simply a character in a novel, Thrall's travels and ultimate triumph, united with the night elves and humans at the peaks of Mount Hyjal and working as one to defeat Archimonde, would forever seal his place as true Warchief of the Horde.

It is only appropriate then that the latest novel written for the Warcraft franchise, detailing the further journeys of Thrall, be undertaken by the woman who started it all -- Christie Golden. Not just an author with a host of Warcraft novels under her belt, Golden is the voice of the former Warchief, the author who gave him a life of his own. Thrall: Twilight of the Aspects continues the journey that Thrall began nearly 10 years ago -- and what a journey it is.

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Filed under: Lore, Cataclysm

Know Your Lore: Grim Batol


The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how -- but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.

Grim Batol was founded by Wildhammer dwarves seeking to escape the legacy of the war that tore dwarf society apart. Led by Khadros, their thane, they marched north from Ironforge (originally the home of all dwarves, from Dark Irons to Bronzebeards to Wildhammers) after the death of King Anvilmar and the civil war that pitted the three main clans of their people against one another. Having lost the war, the Wildhammers chose to build a new, grand home for themselves in the mountains between the Wetlands and the Highlands. And it was grand indeed, for a time. In terms of pure architectural splendor, Grim Batol threatens both Ironforge and the massive constructions of the Dark Irons inside the Blackrock Mountain.

The Wildhammers did not dwell on their loss to the Bronzebeards. If making a new life for themselves in Grim Batol and the Highlands was hard, it was also exciting and a new challenge to be overcome, a new way of life to meet head on and overcome. Sadly, from these auspicious beginnings disaster would pile upon disaster. Armies would invade, fell sorceries would be unleashed, and in the end, the Wildhammers would abandon their once-great home.

It did not rest quietly.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Lore, Know your Lore, Wrath of the Lich King, Cataclysm

Who plays what in the WoW movie?


Back-channel discussion here at WoW.com central has, while not occupied with the question, "What happened to those socks I was going to pack for BlizzCon?", concerned itself with who we'd like to see in the WoW movie. Our Twitterers got in on the act and started sending in a number of suggestions for actors and actresses they'd like in certain roles. Bruce Campbell -- well, he's a given, but there doesn't seem to be any agreement on what he should be playing. Ditto such popular picks as Summer Glau and Judi Dench, although Alexstrasza was often floated as a character for the latter.

The Alexstrasza talk got me to thinking about having seen Mission Impossible on an idle evening recently. While it's your basic (though slick) action flick, the standout character was Vanessa Redgrave's Max-the-arms-dealer. Not only was her entrance thoroughly unexpected, but she was cool, controlled, overflowing with sardonic amusement, and unaffected by the thought of having someone killed. While I would love to see her fight Judi Dench's M from the Bond movies, that won't happen, but now I've wondering who would make a better dragon (black, not red).

Of course, all of this is entirely academic because we have no idea what the movie is even going to be about, but I am entirely certain that Vanessa Redgrave is a dragon (although possibly this is not news). We've talked a lot about a possible plot and the music for the film, but if you got the opportunity to cast it, who would you put in which role?

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

Things that don't annoy me

About half a year ago I wrote the article "Things that annoy me." However, I'm in a good mood tonight:

1. The music in Storm Peaks and Howling Fjord, particularly the choral portion of the former. Spooky and haunting and ethereally on edge, like the Mormon Tabernacle Choir had just glimpsed a large angry dinosaur through the window.

2. The leather boots available at exalted with the Argent Crusade. Yes, the stats are great, but it's how they look on Tauren that really vaults them into the realm of unbridled win. For all I know, the graphic on female Tauren is a serious bug that programmers are working frantically to correct, but I think that boots on a cow look awesome.

3. Dalaran when it's not crawling with people.

4. Which is to say never.

5. Pretty much everything that High Overlord Saurfang says, does, thinks, or writes for the entirety of the Horde's Wrath storyline.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Humor

Ask A Beta Tester: AABT's greatest hits, part 1


Yep, we've shocked the ol' column back to gasping life. The good kind of reanimation, though, not the kind you're probably killing in Northrend.

Wow, this took ages. We got a lot of standout questions while doing Ask A Beta Tester, and I went through all of them trying to pick out the best, funniest, most helpful, or most unintentionally prescient among them. To be perfectly frank, we had so many that I started splitting them into separate articles. I've eliminated the questions that I expect readers will probably have answered for themselves at this point (e.g. Death Knight starting faction reputation) but kept all of the questions that I'm pretty sure are still relevant to the first week of gameplay in Wrath. I've also made a few additions and updates based on what we saw both in the beta and now on the live realms. I hope you guys enjoy reading these as much as we did answering them.

I'm going to start off with the earliest series of questions that Elizabeth Harper and Alex Ziebart took in July and August. To round out the rest of AABT's best in the next few days, we'll keep moving through August, September, October, and up to the very end of AABT.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, Leveling, Factions, Classes, Making money, Wrath of the Lich King

Model changes for Varimathras and Alexstrasza


We certainly enjoyed the model changes to Varian Wrynn and Sylvanas Windrunner, and now Blizzard's finished the unique models for Alexstrasza (human form, that is; you can see her dragon model update here) and Varimathras, as befits their key roles in the storyline for Wrath. I'm a tiny bit disappointed with Alexstrasza's model; her armor is mostly a red copy of Sylvanas' new threads, which are admittedly all sorts of awesome but makes me wonder if there's some kind of Armor Barn in Azeroth for hipster bosses. Alexstrasza does, however, show even more skin than Sylvanas does, so from some peoples' perspectives this might be a feature rather than a bug.

Varimathras is a nice update although he retains his old animations and emotes (you can't really see it from the perspective of the screenshot above, but I think his legs and hooves are a significant improvement on the shaky anatomy of the current dreadlord model). Both he and Alexstrasza's changes are somewhat less shocking than the complete overhaul to Wrynn and Sylvanas, but we're still pleased to see Blizzard taking an interest in the visual badassery of major faction leaders and NPC's. I would tend to agree with Zach Yonzon's contention that it would be amazing to see an update to all the faction leaders if Blizzard could swing it at some point, although I have the sneaking suspicion, judging from what CM's have said about the difficulty of programming in new Druid forms, that this is a fairly lengthy process. However, after seeing the model changes in the beta, I don't think anyone's going to argue it's not worth it, and a number of people have argued for player model changes as well. The extraordinary design work in Northrend will probably add fuel to that fire.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, Lore, Bosses, Factions, NPCs, Wrath of the Lich King

Know Your Lore: Alexstrasza the Lifebinder

Welcome to Know Your Lore, where each week Alex Ziebart brings you a tasty little morsel of lore to wrap your mind around. Sweet, sweet lore. Mmmm. Have suggestions for future KYL topics? E-mail us!

Know Your Lore has covered the benevolent dragons in Warcraft before, but I've decided to highlight a few of them in preparation for Wrath of the Lich King. I feel that saving the best for last is a bunch of crap, so I'm going to start with my personal favorite: Alexstrasza. Admittedly, it isn't terribly hard for her to seal that favorite slot right now. Deathwing and Alexstrasza are the only two Aspects we've been exposed to in a very direct way for a substantial amount of time. To make things even better, she's a headlining character in Wrath.

Alexstrasza is one of five Dragon Aspects chosen and empowered by the Titans prior to their departure from Azeroth. Each of the Aspects was given a domain that they would protect, and have the power to control. Alexstrasza's domain is perhaps the most broad: Life. While all of the Aspects are interconnected and have some sway over one another, Alexstrasza is perhaps the most connected to the others because of her connection to life. Many use this to say she is the 'leader' of the Aspects, but as far as we know, they don't really have one. At least, not until Wrath. Maybe.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, Lore, Know your Lore, Wrath of the Lich King

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