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Anaheim Convention Center expansion will be ready for BlizzCon 2016

So far, Blizzard has kept BlizzCon close to home at the Anaheim Convention Center, even as the number of people wanting to attend has skyrocketed. But there's a chance BlizzCon could get a little bigger in the future, since the Anaheim Convention Center is about to start on a new expansion, adding an extra 200,000 square feet -- bringing the total size of the convention center to 1.8 million square feet -- set to open by fall 2016. The addition will sit on Katella Avenue and match with the towering glass structure of the rest of the convention center (and you can check out concept art on the OC Register for a sneak peek).

This should make the new space available just in time for BlizzCon 2016 ... not that Blizzard has announced BlizzCon 2016 (or BlizzCon 2015 or BlizzCon 2014) yet, but we can hope.

Filed under: News items

Navigating Anaheim for BlizzCon

You've got your BlizzCon tickets confirmed, your flight booked, and your hotel reserved -- in short, you're packed and ready to head to BlizzCon 2013. But do you know what you're doing when you get there? Preparing for a vacation isn't unlike preparing for a dungeon run: it's important to be prepared and know the lay of the land before you arrive.

At BlizzCon you'll probably be spending most of your time in the convention center or at your hotel -- but what if you want to hit up a grocery store for supplies or need to find a pharmacy? We'll help you map out convenient services that are closest to the convention floor and help you can get around while you're there.

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Filed under: BlizzCon

Packing for BlizzCon: Tips for booking air travel

BlizzCon is upon us! Get ready for the convention with travel tips, tricks, and preparation articles from WoW Insider.

BlizzCon 2011 is happening soon -- Oct. 21-22, to be exact. You have nine weeks to wait until the biggest Blizzard event of the year. We're all preparing for the big trip, and now's a good time to talk about air travel arrangements. If you've already gotten your plane tickets, good for you, you early bird. For many people, now's the time to purchase plane tickets.

Did you know that the Guardian thinks that the best time to purchase airline tickets is about eight weeks before traveling? That's soon! Here's some information to help you when purchasing tickets and flying in to BlizzCon.

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Filed under: BlizzCon

Win a trip to BlizzCon from the official WoW magazine

If you are one of the many people who were unable to get tickets to BlizzCon or just couldn't afford to go, the World of Warcraft Official Magazine is giving away two tickets, airfare and a hotel stay for the event. Andy Salisbury, an editor at the magazine, had this to say about the contest:
I know as well as anyone that getting a ticket to BlizzCon is difficult. Having sat in the ticket queue with six browsers open across two computers I understand that they can go fast, and despite your best efforts you'll be left peeking in through the Anaheim Convention Center's windows.

However, today those of us with the World of Warcraft Official Magazine are announcing a contest which will allow you to get your very own pair of BlizzCon tickets (with your room and airfare paid for) on us. In order to find out more, either crank up your World of Warcraft launcher, or head on over to our website at www.worldofwarcraftthemagazine.com.
No purchase is necessary to enter, but there are rules and restrictions just like with any contest. Good luck!

Filed under: News items, Contests, BlizzCon

Reminder: Last chance for BlizzCon 2010 tickets tomorrow, June 5

Did you miss out on purchasing tickets last Wednesday evening on June 2? Don't worry! You still have a shot at getting tickets for BlizzCon, which will be taking place October 22-23 in Anaheim, California! This is just a reminder that the next round of ticket sales will be available tomorrow, June 5 at 10:00 a.m. PDT / 1:00 p.m. EDT. Remember, you can only purchase a maximum of five tickets per household. Jay Mohr will be hosting BlizzCon again this year. Ticket prices are $150 each and they will sell out quickly! Make sure you're online and ready to go at the Blizzard Store or the BlizzCon website in the morning.

If you can't score tickets, the DirecTV Pay Per View event might help satisfy your hunger for the Blizzard event. It's only $39.95 and you get access to the multi-channel internet stream. If you've purchased the internet stream, you can switch between a variety of channels to watch different areas of BlizzCon. In other words, you get watch the events you care about more than others!

Filed under: News items, BlizzCon

Reminder: BlizzCon 2010 tickets on sale tomorrow, June 2

A reminder to those planning on purchasing BlizzCon 2010 tickets: The first round of sales for tickets will be tomorrow, June 2 at 7:00 p.m. PDT/10:00 p.m. EDT. BlizzCon 2010 will be taking place Oct. 22-23 in Anaheim, California.

Tickets are $150 each. For those unable to get tickets during tomorrow's window, there will be a second round of sales on Saturday, June 5 at 10:00 a.m. PDT/1:00 p.m. EDT. There is a five-ticket limit per household.

For those unable to attend the convention proper, the DirecTV Pay Per View event will return in 2010 for $39.95, as well as the multi-channel internet stream of the event. For the first time, anyone who purchases the internet stream will be able to switch freely between multiple channels of coverage dedicated to different areas of BlizzCon, meaning viewers can tune in to the sections they're most interested in, rather than what they're stuck with.

And, of course, WoW.com will be bringing you live blogs of everything and complete event coverage.

For those planning to purchase tickets: This is your reminder. Make sure you're online and at the Blizzard Store or the official BlizzCon website tomorrow evening, play a few rounds of Failoc-alypse and hope your fingers are fast, because these tickets are sure to sell out within seconds.

Filed under: News items, BlizzCon

What the fans want from BlizzCon 2010

In this installment of WoW.com's guest writer program, we welcome a handful of authors to share their thoughts on what is a rumored BlizzCon 2010 this October.

BlizzCon has become one of the premier gaming events each year, attracting folks of every different walk of life from every corner of the globe. In 2009 Chris Metzen stood on stage and to thunderous fire announced World of Warcraft: Cataclysm. The expectations set for future BlizzCon are nothing less than spectacular; reading some of the well thought out opinions, you can see what your fellow WoWers want to see at BlizzCon 2010...

Darcy Zalewski (Better known to some as Syrana)

I went to BlizzCon in 2009 for the first time and saw a lot of great stuff. Since I've experienced it once, now I have some things I'd like to request -- nay, demand -- to see this year. I want to see someone in a Pandaren Monk costume and I want them to go all out with it. I also want to see some updates regarding the Warcraft movie. Then there's the next-gen MMO Blizzard is working on. I hope they'll show some concept art and maybe a demo of this. Lastly, I want Mountain Dew in the vending machines. The only Dew available was at the end of a long concession line (the machines gave Pepsi no matter what button you pushed!). The developer panels taunted me with their untouched bottles of sweet nectar.

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Filed under: BlizzCon, Guest Posts

BlizzCon 2010 tentatively scheduled for late October [Updated x2]

Just moments ago, we received an email from a reader notifying us that BlizzCon has been scheduled for October 22nd and 23rd at the Anaheim Convention Center. That's a Friday and a Saturday, which are historically the days of the week BlizzCon has run. As you can see above, the convention is indeed on the convention center's events calendar. We have confirmed with the Anaheim Convention Center that this booking is legit and is "99.9% confirmed," but I wouldn't run and arrange any travel plans just yet considering Las Vegas Convention Center confirmed that booking, too.

We're reaching out to Blizzard for comment, and we'll let you know as soon as we hear anything else.

Update: The listing has been removed from the convention center's events calendar, but it's preserved in the screenshot above. We will continue to keep an eye on the situation and will make updates as necessary.

Update 2: Blizzard responded to our inquiry about the Anaheim Convention Center listing with this: "Blizzard Entertainment has not announced any details about the next BlizzCon. We recommend that players refrain from making any BlizzCon-related travel plans at this time."

Filed under: BlizzCon

Blizzard celebrates the WoW anniversary

The good folks at the Orange County Register got invited to Blizzard's official WoW anniversary party that took place last Thursday on their Irvine campus, and their report is now posted. It sounds like quite the event -- lots of free food and beer, head honchos regaling employees with their tales of the early days, and Rob Pardo suggesting that just like geek culture helped define this game, this game might help define geek culture going forward.

The picture gallery included with the piece is a good browse, too -- you can see all of the Blizzard heavyweights hanging out together, and the great spread set up on the campus. The Register's also been asking Blizzard about their memories of the game -- they've got more memories from Samwise, launch day stories from Shane Dabiri, and some thoughts from Pardo and Frank Pearce (who, strangely enough, at first didn't believe that Blizzard belonged in a hardcore niche market like MMO gaming -- he didn't want to make "a game that never ended," he says). All good stuff. Congrats once again to Blizzard on five years, good to see they celebrated in style.

Filed under: Events, Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Blizzard, News items, Galleries

Major League Gaming crowns Button Bashers in Anaheim

Major League Gaming wrapped up a tournament in Anaheim, California (we hear some Blizzard folks were headed over to watch), and a Korean team called Button Bashers came out on top, vanquishing SK Gaming's EU team and a team from Check Six. The Button Bashers team is made of a undead mage named Orangemarmalade (the same one that pulled off that wild 2 vs. 1 victory a while back), and Numberone and Hiren, an undead priest and rogue. So yes, an RMP team finished off the tourney at the top, continuing their domation of the arena. SK.EU's druid, warlock, and death knight couldn't stand up to the onslaught. MLG's GotFrag website has lots and lots of info about the teams and tourney, including wrapups from each day of the weekend, and a big gallery of pictures to look through.

MLG passed out $24,000 in cash and prizes to all of the winning teams -- congrats to all of them. Next up, MLG is headed off to Orlando, FL to run their fifth event of the season in January.

Filed under: Mage, Priest, Rogue, Virtual selves, Blizzard, Arena

G4 talks to Blizzard about five years of WoW

We are quickly approaching the fifth anniversary of World of Warcraft's release (my calendar has it on the 23rd of November), and G4 has gotten a head start on celebrating -- they sent Morgan Webb over to Blizzard headquarters to talk to the team, including Tom Chilton, Alex Afrasiabi, and Jeff Kaplan, about what things have been like in the last five years since WoW's launch. There's nothing super groundbreaking in here, but there is lots of reminiscing about the game's early thinking -- Chilton talks about how dual specs were never even considered as an idea (until they, you know, were) and what things were like in the early post-launch days. Pretty stressful, sounds like.

Afrasiabi talks about how the quest team puts together and tracks all of the game's quests (he mentions both Metzen and the game's historian as the "lorekeepers" of the game), and the fact that they've put together "millions of words" of story and background lore for the game at large. He specifically talks about Cataclysm and replacing questlines, and says that if something does get removed from the game, they're hoping to replace it with something better, but most "fan favorites" will stay. And finally, Jeff Kaplan looks back on the early game itself, from unfinished zones to broken balance to launch day exhaustion. G4 teases something about the next MMO project, but all he says is that he can't talk about it. Oh well -- if we can't look forward, at least we get a nice look back from the folks at Blizzard who've been there since the beginning. You can see all four of the videos after the break.

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Filed under: Fan stuff, Blizzard, News items, Quests, Lore

Video of the Hogger live raid at BlizzCon


Michael Gray mentioned it in his writeup of the Premonition live raid at BlizzCon 2009, but this is a moment so epic it's worth mentioning again, and now that there's video online, you can see it: in the final fight, none other than Hogger appeared to take on one of the best guilds in the game. And this was no mere Hogger, nor even the slightly-more-powerful Memory of Hogger seen in the Trial of Champions. No no -- this thing was a foul raid boss from the bowls of Deepholm, a one-shotting maniac that couldn't be controlled even by the best tank. As you can see in the video above, he charges like an angry Rhino -- he was originally pulled by a Hunter who was then one-shot so fast the aggro table cleared and Hogger reset instantly. And after the raid changed their collective pants, they took him on again, and it was all over but the Gnoll snickering.

He was immune to taunt, and he appeared to just pick a target at random, pinging around the raid like Batman beating up bad guys in his recent videogame. He only had about 600 hit points (some say 666, which would make sense), but he was immune to damage, or at least all forms of damage that Premonition tried to throw at him. In the end, even though they'd beaten Thaddius, Anub'Rekhan, and Patchwerk all at once, this level 80 Heroic version of Hogger was the one who wiped them. I saw Ozzy do War Pigs, but this Hogger fight was probably the most epic thing I saw in Anaheim last weekend.

Filed under: Events, Fan stuff, Blizzard, Raiding, Bosses, BlizzCon

BlizzCon in the rearview

BlizzCon 2009 is behind us, and over on the forums, Irhabi has reached the conclusion that he won't be going next year. He says that with everything streaming out onto DirecTV and the Internet, and with no beta access included, and (what he thought was) a less than stellar performance by Ozzy Osbourne, he might as well stayed at home. I don't particularly share his opinion -- there are lots of great reasons to go to BlizzCon, from getting to try out the latest builds of Blizzard's upcoming games, to meeting vendors and other fans on the floor, to getting the chance to ask your own questions of the devs (and maybe even meet some of them at the various parties around Anaheim). If you're just bummed that BlizzCon was lame because you didn't get a beta key this year, maybe you should have wandered the show floor a little bit.

On the other side of it, the folks who bought the DirecTV stream at home are a little more split on the subject -- we twittered to get some responses, and they run the gamut from "yes, it was worth it with the pet," to "no, they should have covered WoW more" (not only did the feed cut off halfway through the contest on Friday night -- we later heard from DirecTV employees that they could only broadcast a certain number of hours over the weekend, and that's where they made the cut -- but they also skipped a few big WoW panels for Starcraft coverage on the main stage instead). And don't even get us started on Jo Garcia, lovely and well-meaning though she may be (though Jay Mohr doesn't deserve the crap he's getting -- he did a respectable job this year). Fortunately, there were lots of other outlets to get your WoW news from, and odds are that Grunty will soothe your pains from the $40 you might feel you've wasted.

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Filed under: Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Blizzard, BlizzCon

Live Ustream of the WoW.com reader meet-up

Live Broadcasting by Ustream

Looks like the gang's getting started at the Tangerine Patio of the Annabella Hotel, and we've got the live Ustream feed here so you can hang out virtually!

If you're in the Anaheim area, swing by to say hello to the gang, and we've got prizes and giveaways from Upper Deck, Steelseries, WoWTCGLoot.com, Swagdog, and Creative Labs in addition to guests, a (we hope functional) kitchen and a cash bar! We may be able to give prizes away to virtual attendees as well, so hang tight. More updates will follow throughout the evening.

UPDATE: Yup, audio's lousy, we're working on it. Turpster apparently has another microphone. Now if only we could find Turpster...

Additional notes and updates beyond the cut.


BlizzCon 2009 is here! WoW.com has continuing coverage, bringing you the latest in Cataclysm news, live blogs, galleries, and reports right from the convention floor. Check out WoW.com's Guide to BlizzCon for the latest!

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Filed under: Podcasting, Events, Fan stuff, WoW Insider Business, WoW Social Conventions, Features, BlizzCon

BlizzCon 2009: Don't forget to look for us

BlizzCon 2009 officially starts tomorrow and most of Team WoW.com are either in Anaheim or heading down there as we speak. As you make your way through throngs of people this Friday and Saturday, keep your eyes peeled for our intrepid crew. But how do you spot them? Granted, they're not like cosplayers. Although follow the throng of adoring women and you may just spot Turpster. The rest of the team are known for their ability to Shadowmeld instantly so we've had to equip them with some very special gear this BlizzCon.

You can get a good look at team at the meetup tonight, but if you can't make it and need a visual cue you can spot them on the convention floor by looking for their special BlizzCon gear: a Legendary and totally epic, limited edition T shirt (with +50 visibility) featuring a certain crab and that long-promised equine mount. So don't forget to mark them off like the rare spawns they are and come up and say "hi". They may even have a little something for you.

BlizzCon 2009 is coming up on August 21st and 22nd! We've got all the latest news and information. At BlizzCon you can play the latest games, meet your guildmates, and ask the developers your questions. Plus, there's some great looking costumes.

Filed under: WoW Insider Business, BlizzCon

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