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Posts with tag Violet-Hold

Know Your Lore: Kul Tiras and the mystery of Tol Barad


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.

A hot topic of contention among Cataclysm players is the new PvP zone of Tol Barad and the accompanying Tol Barad peninsula zone. They features a host of new daily quests and two new factions with some truly stunning rewards -- have you seen those spectral mounts? Gorgeous!. Players were really looking forward to playing around in the new area. Unfortunately, between mechanics issues and queuing woes, few people are actually enjoying the new content.

However, Tol Barad isn't quite as "new" as you'd think -- at least not from a lore standpoint. Today, we're going to take a look at the history of Tol Barad. But before that, we need to take a look at the nation that owned it, a nation that's been mysteriously absent in World of Warcraft: the island nation of Kul Tiras, birthplace of Jaina Proudmoore and home of one of the strongest naval fleets the world had ever seen.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

The OverAchiever: End of the Glory of the Hero

Welcome back to OverAchiever's Glory of the Hero guide. I honestly can't believe I started this series almost a year ago. Time flies when you're deliberately wiping Less-rabi over and over again, I guess.

This is the full Glory of the Hero guide, organized by dungeon:

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Filed under: Achievements, The Overachiever

The OverAchiever: The Keymaster

Hot on the heels of a much larger achievement we've recently covered (Twenty-Five Tabards), I've decided to do The Keymaster in this article for two reasons:

  1. I recently watched Ghostbusters.
  2. Do I need another reason?
Actually, the other reason is that if you've done Twenty-Five Tabards, Keymaster is usually pretty easy because you've likely got some Burning Crusade faction rep under your belt. I could tack on a third -- I'm constantly surprised at the number of players who aren't keyed for some of the old-world dungeons, and by "surprised," possibly I mean "irritated," because I keep getting pestered to go open doors. Happily, just about all of these keys can be soloed at 80 for most classes, and none of them are particularly time-intensive (with the possible exception of the Scholomance key due to insane travel time) to get.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Features, Achievements, The Overachiever

Patch 3.3: Teleporting in and out of instances

The most recent patch notes answered something I've been wondering about the "summon-from-anywhere" LFG system since I first heard about it: what happens if you get summoned into an instance and then you leave? The answer, apparently, is that you go not to the instance's entry portal, but instead you get sent right back out from whence you came. That's a bummer and a benefit -- unfortunately, you won't be able to use the feature to do any cross-world teleporting (leaving Violet Hold, for example, won't work as an extra hearthstone to Dalaran), but on the other hand, you won't have to stop what you're doing wherever you are.

In fact, porting in and out of any instances you run may change your positioning in the game completely. Nibuca doesn't see any need any more to leave a hearthstone in Dalaran -- that was previously the most central location for collecting daily dungeon quests and flying out to meeting stones, but with neither of those things necessary any more, you can park your stone anywhere you want. It'll be very interesting to see how movement patterns change after the new system goes live. I doubt Dalaran will be a ghost town (if nothing else, there will be plenty of people there sitting in LFG chat), but certainly the LFG is mixing up the reasons that a lot of people are hanging around there.

Patch 3.3 is the last major patch of Wrath of the Lich King. With the new Icecrown Citadel 5-man dungeons and 10/25-man raid arriving soon, patch 3.3 will deal the final blow to the Arthas. WoW.com's Guide to Patch 3.3 will keep you updated with all the latest patch news.

Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Instances

Two Bosses Enter: Ionar vs. Xevozz


Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW.com's series of fantasy death matches. Welcome to Round Two of the five-man Wrath of the Lich King season. Grab a seat, and let's get ready to rumble!

Energy sweeps the Thunderdome this week as Ionar of the Halls of Lightning confronts Xevozz from the Violet Hold. Mage-Lord Urom gave Xevozz a bit of a struggle in Xevozz's first-bracket match, while Ionar easily overcame Ichoron in his own shot at a berth in this round. Which boss will zap the other's strength this week?

Time for a quick review of the standard Two Bosses Thunderdome ground rules:
  • Assume that the opponents along with their minions share similar levels, health pools and comparative overall damage output.
  • This deathmatch takes place on neutral territory, which shall in no way hinder either combatant from using his or her usual battle abilities.
  • All the usual minions will be available to each boss.
  • Don't get caught up in gameplay mechanics and what actual players might do in each encounter.
  • Don't neglect style, story and scale.
And now, the weekly Thunderdome call-out: Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls ... Dyin' time's here.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Features, Lore, Bosses, Two Bosses Enter

53 Emblems per day


This is great -- it's probably more WoW playing than I could do in one day, but maybe I'll try it this weekend anyway. loztaylor has designed a heck of an instance run that rolls through thirteen Heroics and will nab you 53 Emblems of Conquest (along with all of the other spoils of war) in one day. Basically, you'll be sweeping across the land of Northrend, hitting every Heroic you come across, and if by some chance you're able to keep the group together the whole time, and keep from passing out from all the WoW playing you're doing, at the end you'll end up with 53 Emblems, more than enough to purchase most of the Emblem gear, and almost enough to pick up a Tier piece.

Of course, if you're wearing a rep tabard, you'll also rein in a ton of dungeon rep. And if you hit the new Trial of the Champion, you'll pick up your Champion's Seals as well. And you'll have 13 Frozen Orbs to divvy among the group, a few extra Emblems and gold from doing the daily quests, and if you're good and/or lucky, you might even be able to clear up a few of the achievements or snag that blue proto-drake. Of course, doing this much of anything in the game will probably nab you plenty of rewards. But here's a tuned route to follow all the way around the world of Heroics. If I can find a willing group of suckers guildies, I think I'll give it a shot.

Filed under: How-tos, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Instances, Bosses, Making money

Completion rates on Wrath heroics


Yeah, we all know that Oculus kinda sucks, but now we've got some numbers on it -- or, more accurately, Flyv does. One of my feral Druid colleagues has been examining Armory data on completion rates of Wrath heroics (and incidentally took a peek at how long it takes for the average person to go from dinging 80 to a full Naxx clear). The numbers aren't too surprising: heroics that correspond to the earliest Wrath "regular" dungeons -- Violet Hold, Utgarde Keep, and the Nexus -- are far and away the most-completed heroics. Oculus -- and to a lesser extent, Ahn'kahet and Halls of Stone -- languish at 40, 51, and 58% completion rates respectively.

Halls of Stone surprises me somewhat, as I really didn't think it was a difficult heroic (outside of running a Druid tank on the Brann Bronzebeard event), but Ahn'kahet is universally cited amongst tanks and healers for LOS issues and nasty damage. And Oculus...well, we've talked about Oculus here before. I still think the concept of the dungeon itself is fantastic, but the moment that one or two embarrassed people in your group admit that it's their first time on the drakes, you know you're in for a long and ugly run.

I hope Flyv revisits this data at some point, because I'd love to see how the numbers change over the course of Wrath. With achievements introduced only as BC was ending, we don't really have a good look at how dungeon popularity and completion rates evolved there, and I think the numbers say a lot about the content players prioritize when they get a toon (or multiple toons) to the level cap.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Instances, Achievements

Two Bosses Enter: Mage-Lord Urom vs. Xevozz


Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW Insider's series of fantasy death matches. This season's bosses come from the five-man instances of Wrath of the Lich King.

Here's an annoying pair who deserve each other: Mage-Lord Urom of the Oculus versus Xevozz of the Violet Hold. Yes, I admit it -- when my husband IMs me from his office in frustration over the latest twist in corporate politics, I take a certain twisted pleasure in replying, "No worries – I just sent Xevozz and his stupid spheres up against Urom the bloody platform-hopper." Ahhh ... Takes the edge right off.

So let's start with the ground rules. Assume that these foes share similar levels, health pools and a comparative overall damage output. Of course, we'll allow Xevozz to be able to "follow" Urom from platform to platform (we'll leave the details to your imagination). Don't get caught up in game mechanics and what actual players might do in each encounter. Focus your debate on the three S's -- Style, Story and Scale – and consider the flavor each villain brings to bear. What do you think would happen during this battle? Leave your comment explaining what happens, and cast your vote for who you think blows up who.

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Filed under: Features, Bosses, Two Bosses Enter

The Queue: Genn, you're such a jerk

Welcome back to The Queue, WoW Insider's daily Q&A column where the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Alex Ziebart will be your host today.

Be warned that the very end of today's edition of The Queue contains minor spoilers for the upcoming Ulduar raid zone. Everything is perfectly safe until the very last question, and even then the spoilers are very minor. Minor as in it describes a couple of the bosses found within the zone. It doesn't give away any story or plot. If you want your experience to remain pure, stop at the last question. If you don't care so much about knowing who you'll see in Ulduar, it's perfectly safe.

I warn because I love.

mindor asked...


What is the deal with the Greymane wall in Silverpine forest? Is there an old raid set in there? What is on the other side of that monstrous wall?

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Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Lore, The Queue

Phat Loot Phriday: Staff of Trickery


Yes, I'm pretty sure this is the second Feral Druid piece we've done in a row (even though last week was technically a combination of PvP gear). We'll do a Warlock piece next week -- or if there's something you're specifically wondering about, speak up in the comments. But look at that staff -- how could we pass this up?

Name: Staff of Trickery (Wowhead, Thottbot, Wowdigger)
Type: Epic Staff
Damage/Speed: 358-537 / 2.40 (186.5 DPS)
Abilities:
  • +89 Agility, +133 Stamina
  • Adds 1843 Feral Attack Power
  • Increases attack power by 180

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Filed under: Druid, Hunter, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Instances, Phat Loot Phriday, Classes

The Queue: Sea shanty edition


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

Good afternoon, everyone! I'll waste no time trying desperately to be funny today, we'll just jump into this thing.

Carda
asked...

Which heroic dungeon provides the most rep? Of course, this will probably vary depending on the amount of trash pulled (full clear vs. "just the pats, ma'am"), but accounting for bosses and essential trash pulls, where can I farm to max out my rep as quickly as I can?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Instances, Lore, Factions, The Queue

Two Bosses Enter: Keristrasza vs. Cyanigosa


Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW Insider's series of fantasy death matches. This season's bosses come from the five-man instances of Wrath of the Lich King.

We're back! Live from WoW Insider, the Wrath Season of Two Bosses Enter, One Boss Leaves. Two Bosses is our series of fantasy death matches between the game's infamous PvE villains. This season, we'll throw into the pit the bosses of Wrath of the Lich King's five-man instances, two by two, until we come up with an ultimate winner.

The best part? You determine who wins.

The central tenet of a Two Bosses matchup is an assumption that the bosses are of approximately the same level and health and that they're fighting in neutral territory. It's fighting abilities and scale we're debating here – so don't get caught up in actual game mechanics. Consider the flavor each villainous gladiator brings to bear, and cast your vote for who you think would come out on top.

Your first match-up in Two Bosses Enter: The Wrath Season -- Keristrasza versus Cyanigosa. Details and your chance to determine the winner, after the break.

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Filed under: Features, Two Bosses Enter

Shifting Perspectives: So. Um, do bears suck?

Every Tuesday, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting Druids and those who group with them. This week we shelve the column we originally intended to run due to a rather pressing matter.

OK, folks. I have a confession to make. This week's Shifting Perspectives was originally meant to be a full guide to gearing your Restoration Druid at 80, and I'm still going to post that, either this week or next. A lot of people have (correctly, I think) observed that this column has historically paid more attention to Feral than to Restoration or Balance, and it's my aim to balance (har!) that out a bit. Part of it is just that the people who play Druids on staff here at WoW Insider are usually feral, and part of it is that -- at least as of the last numbers we had on it -- most people playing Druids are also feral. I confess I would love to see the demographics on Druids post-Wrath, because I get the sense that Balance in particular has become markedly more popular.

But the Resto post is going to have to wait a few days, not least because my eyes are swimming from so much Wowhead. We found out today that Swipe's threat is getting a significant buff, but over the course of reading the pertinent forum thread and some back-channel discussion here, I ran across a few things concerning bear tanking that really made me sit up after the hell of tanking last night's heroic Old Kingdom and go, "Wait. It's not just me?"

Personally whenever I encounter serious problems in a dungeon I tend to chalk it up to the fact that I suck. I find this to be an efficient and typically accurate means of pinpointing the source of an issue. However, my fellow Druids, our problems may actually be more wide-ranging than that.

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, Instances, Expansions, Features, Classes, Buffs, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives, Wrath of the Lich King

Encrypted Text: I roll on caster loot

Every Wednesday, Chase Christian of Encrypted Text invites you to enter the world of shadows, as we explore the secrets and mechanics of the Rogue class. This week, we'll be talking about hit rating and the seeming lack thereof in Northrend gear.

After a few all-nighters in a row and a lot of showing up to work very tired, I finally reached level 80 this weekend. After a few victory laps in Dalaran to celebrate my victory over experience points and blue bubbles and Hemet Nesingwary (not for long, I'm sure); the looming realization of level-cap responsibilities started to enter my mind. Reputations, heroics, arena points, and honor – I had a lot of work to do.

So, I took my own advice and decided to start some heroics, but not before spec'ing into my PvP mutilate build. I thought about trying out the truly insane DPS of Honor Amongst Thieves builds, but decided to postpone that until I've got some more gear to give it a real trial. Read on to see what I discovered on the way to my first Emblem of Heroism.

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Filed under: Rogue, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Raiding, (Rogue) Encrypted Text, Wrath of the Lich King

Know Your Lore: Dalaran


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? Leave a comment below!

Dalaran has been one of the most prominent nations in the Eastern Kingdoms since its founding, though it's actually quite small. A nation only thousands strong at its height has perhaps held more sway over world leaders in its time than any other nation, and has attracted the ire of some of the most powerful entities Azeroth has ever seen.

Dalaran, located in the heart of former Lordaeron territory, has been the center of Arcane knowledge since its creation, and could be considered the Humans' answer to Quel'Thalas, though the nation accepts Elves (and many others) in its ranks as well. Magic is Dalaran's lifeblood, and is even ruled through the strength and wisdom of its magi. Dalaran is a magocracy, a government ruled by a council of mages known as the Kirin Tor, elected by citizens of the nation. Their icon is the Violet Eye, with Violet being the motif used for the nation itself, and the color purple representing the Arcane as a whole in Warcraft (Arcane Missiles, Netherstorm).

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

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