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Posts with tag aq40

The 15 nastiest trash clears of WoW

The 15 nastiest trash clears of WoW ANY
I was reading through some links while writing a follow-up to Robert's Not-So-Original WoW Miscellany when I happened across some discussions concerning the game's most agonizing trash. This is a popular subject for players, not least because complaining is a lot of fun, but I don't think anyone's going to argue that there haven't been some legitimately unpleasant trash clears in WoW.

Fortunately, most of the really bad trash clears are a distant memory, but there was at least one recent one that almost everyone who raided Dragon Soul could agree on. I'm going to include both dungeons and raids here, mostly because Shattered Halls was among the first things to go on this list. After including that, I knew there were other, equally nightmarish 5-mans that had to be included in the interest of fairness.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

Blood Pact: Soloing the vanilla raids for pets and more

Blood Pact Soloing the vanilla raids for pets and more MON
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Blood Pact for affliction, demonology, and destruction warlocks. This week, Megan O'Neill laments being knocked successfully up past the Suppression Room, only to pull the boss and be knocked back down and across the Suppression Room while the original knockback mobs die. UGH.

Well, Naxxramas is big enough that I'll leave a whole article to it. The other raids from the original raiding scene of level 60 can fit into one since they're relatively easy to do. The roadblocks to finishing them are largely mechanical tricks, not damage output or survivability problems.

There's no real difference between the specs in these earliest raids. I run as destruction mostly because it's fast-paced, but any spec and almost any talent setup can do these raids.

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Filed under: Warlock, (Warlock) Blood Pact

WoW Archivist: Scepter of the Shifting Sands

The WoW Archivist explores the secrets of World of Warcraft's past. What did the game look like years ago? Who is etched into WoW's history? What secrets does the game still hold?

It is sad to me that it seems the only players who have access to truly epic quest lines these days are the ones on the receiving ends of legendaries -- Shadowmourne and now Dragonwrath. If we turn back the clock to vanilla, we'd come across perhaps the most epic quest line of them all. Monstrous in its time commitment, material needs, and far more random and diverse than the chain for Thunderfury, it was the mother of all quests. Not only did it require the participation of an entire realm in order to be able to complete it, but it took the effort of at least one raid team of 40 (if not more) to coordinate and organize the energy needed to get a very small handful of people very rare and very special rewards that have yet to be duplicated by Blizzard.

This quest chain is the Scepter of the Shifting Sands.

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Filed under: WoW Archivist

The OverAchiever: Mountain O' Mounts in raids

Every Thursday, The Overachiever shows you how to work toward those sweet achievement points. This week, we return to flogging the guts out of bosses that might puke up a horse.

Today we're going to look at mounts that drop in (or, in one case, as part of a quest within) raids. I'd initially expected to include mounts like the Ulduar proto-drakes and Icecrown frostwyrms, but they're really more the result of a series of achievements rather than encounters themselves. Otherwise, there are more than enough pure drops to keep us occupied today; Blizzard's always been fond of making unique mounts the potential reward of difficult raid encounters, and you'll get a few extra feats of strength if you nab some of these beauties.

Also read:

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Filed under: Achievements, The Overachiever

The Queue: Trinket-Palooza 2009

Welcome back to The Queue,'s daily Q&A column where the team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Allison Robert is your hostess today again (our condolences).

I'm in an autumnal sort of mood, hence today's picture. Yes, I know that Barrens trees always look like that. We got a really interesting question about trinkets the last time around that really caught my attention, so a lot of today's Queue is going to be comprised of an Enjoyable Stroll Down Memory Lane and Into Holy ^$*# Look At That Trinket From AQ40 How Has That Not Been Nerfed Yet.

Starlin asks...

So, what's up with Brewfest this year? Anything new or updated?

Fortunately or us, Kisirani posted on this same question yesterday. To summarize, there are no major changes to the holiday, but Coren Direbrew has been updated to level 80, the mount drop rates haven't changed (nor are they now required for the Brewfest meta-achievement), and no new pets or mounts have been added. You can reasonably expect a beefed-up holiday boss with a new loot table (most likely of ilevel 200 items, possibly 219 if they want to match the gear from heroic Trial of the Champion), but otherwise the same experience as last year. I'll have an OverAchiever for the good folks seeking Brewfest achievements up on the site soon.

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Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Features, The Queue

The Queue: You ain't nothin' but a Core Hound

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. Adam Holisky will be your host today.

There's a few good questions today of various voluptuous varieties: raiding, legal ToS (TNG > ToS, by the way), and new gaming hardware. Yummy.

Start me off, Delks...

Edit: Please be sure to listen to Fly Me To The Moon by Ol' Blue Eyes during today's Queue, or you can listen to the title's name sake song.

Delks asked...

"What's the point of running old world raids and instances?"

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Filed under: The Queue

The Queue: Shoo fly, don't bother me

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.

To kick things off today, I actually wanted to add something to one of Adam's responses yesterday. Spiraea was looking for a title that would fit their Priest. Adam suggested The Immortal, but me? I'm all about the Hallowed. You can't get it until October, which makes getting your hands on it tough... but it'll be worth the wait! It's my favorite title on my Priest. When I get a new raid title I switch to that for awhile, but always go back to Hallowed.

realt asked...

I have a question regarding in-game voice chat (or Ventrilo). Our guild has never used voice-chat when raiding. So far we have done pretty well with clearing all 10man content, including Sartharion+1D, without it. Now we are progressing into 25man. At which point do we really need starting using voice chat you think or isn't required at all? I haven't been in many other raiding guilds besides this one so I am curious how others are handling their communication.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Burning Crusade, Wrath of the Lich King, The Queue

Ask a Beta Tester: Leveling, the Taunka, and mounts

All of us here at WoW Insider are staggering around somewhat zombie-like in the wake of BlizzCon with the patch (probably) coming tomorrow and the amount of information we're hoping to get out in the next 24 hours. So in all truth I don't know whether the answers to today's questions are completely factual or just stuff that started swimming in front of my eyes at 1:00 this morning. Arthas is actually a girl underneath all that armor, just like Samus Aran. The zone music to Icecrown is "Won't Get Fooled Again" by The Who. The Hateful Gladiator cloth belt is a pink tutu. Flying bunnies will be available in the next expan-

(Sound of a short scuffle in the background, followed by a whip crack)

Thank you, Dan, a little perspective is always useful in these difficult times.

Jason asks...

Will Northrend be accessible at 68 like Outland was accessible at 58? Or do I need to be a solid 70 to quest and instance in Northrend?

Technically, Northrend will be accessible to anyone with the Wrath of the Lich King expansion installed; you can hop a boat or zeppelin on any character of any level. There's no "You must be THIS HIGH to cross through the portal to Outland" restriction, but you won't be able to pick up any of the quests available in Northrend until level 68. Could you grind your way to 68 in Northrend from the mid-60's? Maybe, but I wouldn't recommend it.

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Filed under: Expansions, Features, Humor, Lore, Leveling, Factions, NPCs, Alts, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King, Achievements

Legendary Weapons: Drops vs. questing

Image via wowhead

A Discussion of the newly dropped Thori'dal bought up a lively discussion on Legendary weapons in my guild chat the other day, which has in turn set my own mental wheels turning. Looking at the difference between the pre-Burning Crusade Legendaries and the Burning Crusade Legendaries, there's one big difference that stands out (beyond the level difference): The pre-BC Legendaries were quested, while the BC Legendaries have been drops.

The clear-cut off seems to suggest that at some point, Blizzard decided that creating long, involved quests in order to obtain Legendary weapons just wasn't the way to go, and they'd rather let the RNG take care of distributing Legendaries. But the question is, did they make the right choice? There's good arguments for both sides.

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Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Instances, Quests, Raiding, The Burning Crusade, Lore, Bosses, Wrath of the Lich King

The 7 best trinkets in the World of Warcraft

You know, if there's one thing I have noticed digging through my bags, it's that I have a whole mess of trinkets. Of all the gear slots, it seems like trinkets are some of the most versatile and swappable. Depending on whether you need a bit more hit rating, a bit more critical strike rating, a bit more mana regeneration, a bit more health, a bit more armor, or you plan to go PvPing for a bit, you can fill up bags upon bags alone with a whole bunch of trinkets, waiting for the right moment to spring them.

Then there's the really bad ass trinkets. I'm not talking trinkets that are traditionally defined as "useful," I'm talking about the trinkets that make you into the life of the party. The ones that make other people notice you, make them stand up and say, "Woah, that guy is using some CRAZY trinkets." You know what I mean. Stop trying to get yourself that Ashtongue Talisman, these are the REAL deal.

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Filed under: Items, Humor, Lore, RP

A Lament for the Qiraji mount

This one's for the ladies.
Pre-Burning Crusade raiders will back me up on this: The Qiraji mount from AQ40 was pretty sweet. Not only did it look pretty cool, but the idea of summoning a giant bug to burrow up through the ground and allow you to ride it was fun too.

Unfortunately, ever since the Burning Crusade came out, my poor, poor bug has wasted away in the bank. I have been haunted by the thought of it being so lonely in there ever since. I can't even watch Starship Troopers without feeling nostalgia and a twinge of guilt to imagine good old bug-bug waiting forever to be ridden again. I honestly do think that if they ever removed the restrictions on my bug, I'd ride it everywhere. I suppose it might make a few Scarab Lords feel a bit less special about their ride-anywhere battle tanks, but... come on, they get the BLACK color, and that's totally unique enough by itself, right?

Unfortunately, it doesn't matter, since Bornakk chimed in on a forum post praising the bug mounts today to say that they don't plan to let you use the crystal outside the instance any time soon. He did suggest that you could use it to link in chat and taunt people who never had one. I say I'd rather ride mine. I'd even do a big old quest line or pay 2000 gold, like some of the people in the thread suggested.

On the plus side, he didn't say they'd NEVER remove the restriction, so maybe there's still hope. Hey, if nothing else, we'll probably be headed into Azjol-Nerub come Wrath of the Lich King, right? Considering we'll likely fight bugs there, maybe we'll be able to use our crystals in there, or at least tame some new mounts.

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Instances, Lore, RP, Mounts, Wrath of the Lich King, Forums

Breakfast Topic: Best boss fight

Straight from the forums: What's the best boss fight in the game?

Personally, having been up through Gruul, I remain a big fan of Jeklik in Zul'Gurub-- it's got just the right mix of old fashioned tanking, AoE, and (eventually) all-out chaos that a great boss battle should have. People are saying that C'thun is a classic, but like most players, I've never had the chance to see him. In terms of five-man bosses, the quality on those really jumped up in Outland. I'd say Heroic Capacitus is fun, with the positive/negative mechanic borrowed from Thaddius. And Sepethrea's little Tron room in the Mechanar is a good time, too.

But I'm probably forgetting quite a few good ones. What is the best boss fight in the game?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Instances, Bosses

Phat Loot Phriday: Band of Icy Depths

Another Phat Loot Request this week (we'll get back to Zul'Aman next week, because there's a lot of great stuff in there). Tachaeon from Turalyon sent us this ring that is strangely remarkable in a few different ways.

Name: Band of Icy Depths
Type: Epic Ring
Armor: N/A
  • +19 Stamina, +20 Frost resistance, which was nice back in the days of Naxx-- now, it's not as big, but it's still a nice boost.
  • And on Equip: Allows underwater breathing. That's right, just like the Hydrocane, which we covered over a year ago, this is one of the items in the game that gives this buff without a Warlock or Shaman around. This one's a lot harder to get, however.
How to Get It: This baby comes from the AQ gate opening questline-- which you can do even if the gates have already opened on your server. WoW Wiki has the long writeup on exactly how the quests are all done, and it's a darn shame this quest will almost never be undertaken again. Blizzard must have put a lot of work into developing all these little plotlines, and there is a ton of lore and great story to be found in this thing, but it's all hidden behind a Brood of Nozdormu reputation grind, and considering no one has any need to open up AQ any more (except, of course, on the servers where it's not yet opened), almost no one will ever see it. Bummer. I guess Blizzard is learning from their mistakes more and more, and bringing more epic content to everyone able to do it, but it's a shame that this great, gigantic quest chain has gotten lost in the mix of expansion upgrades and smaller guilds.

This ring is hidden in the second part of the chain, where your goal is to get back the colored shards from the dragonflights around Azeroth. Within the Blue Shard chain, you receive this ring as a quest reward. Definitely a long, long way to go just to get a ring that will let you breathe underwater, but I think the strange placement of this ring as a quest reward is one reason Tachaeon wanted it covered here.

And finally, the strangest thing about this epic ring...

Getting Rid of it: .. is found when you sell it to a vendor. Finally, something interesting to put in the "Getting Rid of It" section! Yes, this ring sells for... wait for it... 82g 80s 85c, making it, to my knowledge, the item with the highest vendor price ingame. I don't know if this ring really qualifies for Phat loot, but it is definitely one of the most weirdly budgeted items in Azeroth.

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Quests, Phat Loot Phriday

Atiesh and the new Naxx

Considering that Kel'Thuzad is basically "the boss of shipping WoW" (according to Metzen at BlizzCon), then Atiesh, the Legendary caster item that once belonged to Medivh, is the greatest item in levels 1-60. But we're at level 70 now, and when we get to level 80, Atiesh, a Legendary item, might end up looking more like a stick than anything else. So Asheen asks, knowing that Naxx is set to be "repurposed" for our trip to Northrend: will Atiesh make a return?

It's a cool idea. Bornakk says, "Maybe." There are a few tangles in the plan: currently, Atiesh requires a trip to C'thun in AQ to get the base (I believe because Brann Bronzebeard put it there), which is a 40 man raid that most guilds don't want to bother with. And of course the stats would need some updating-- it's a nice staff, but not exactly a Legendary level 80 any more. And finally, the staff provides a portal to Karazhan, and at level 80, will that really be as amazing as it used to be?

Bornakk also says the lore needs to be set in place, but that's a copout-- Blizzard can do whatever they want (what if the Kirin Tor decided to repurpose Atiesh and combined it with a new base that didn't need to come from AQ40?). But the biggest issue with bringing back Atiesh is that there's so many other good items that could just replace it. Medivh's staff is hardly the most important item in the game any more, and as Bornakk points out, even though Medivh had great power, it didn't necessarily all come from his staff.

I can't wait to see Naxx's new purpose in WotLK, but there are too many old items floating around for Blizzard to worry about updating. I'd rather see new legendaries, and maybe even some artifacts, come out of the new Naxx and Northrend.

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Guilds, Blizzard, Expansions, Lore, Leveling

Phat Loot Phriday: Black Qiraji Resonating Crystal

They don't come much more rare than this baby-- you had 10 hours to get it, and the overwhelming odds are that you didn't anyway.

Name: Black Qiraji Resonating Crystal
Type: Legendary Ground Mount
Speed: 100%
  • Well technically, the crystal isn't the mount-- it just summons one. It's the bug looking thing you see above.
  • It's called a Silithid Scarab, or more formally, a Black Qiraji Battle Tank.
  • Can be ridden anywhere in the world. More on why that's so special in a second.
  • And while this may be a "bug" (get it?), players are reporting that there's something special about the way this mount is summoned-- while you do have to be out of combat and unmounted to actually summon it (like all mounts), you don't have to be either when you start summoning it (unlike other mounts). So you could be in combat (like, in a battleground), start to summon the mount, and as long as you've left combat by the time it finished, you'll be mounted.
How to Get It: You can't. At least, most of you can't. Lots of people can get non-black bug mounts-- they drop pretty regularly in Ahn'Qiraj 40, and can only be used in that instance (and not in combat-- apparently the bugs are very skittish).

But the black qiraji mounts are very, very rare, and the reason is this: they were given only to players who hit the gong outside of Ahn'Qiraj only during a 10-hour period after the opening of the gates.

So here's how to get one. First of all, if you're on a server where the gates have been open for more than 10 hours (which is most of them), you're out of luck. So you'll have to roll a toon on one of the newer servers-- yes, there are still quite a few servers out there who have not yet opened the AQ gates.

Then, of course, you'll have to get your character all the way up to 60, so you can start the questline that will give you the mallet you need to bang the gong to open the gates. In order to actually finish this questline, however, (which starts in Silithus, if you really want to try), you'll have to go all over Azeroth and do all kinds of super heroic stuff-- in short, you'll need to be backed by a guild full of people who know what they're doing. Oh, and then there's the whole "War Effort" thing. If you were playing back when AQ first came out, you'll remember that opening the gates requires the whole server-- Horde and Alliance-- to collect tons and tons of items for "the War Effort."

But after all that is finished (all in a day's work, right?), you can finally take your Scepter of Ahn'Qiraj down to the gates of AQ, hit the gong, and this black bug mount is yours. Oh, and if you're not the first to open the gates, you can still get the mount, you just have to hit the gong (which means you need to finish the quest also) sometime within 10 hours of when it is first hit. See why the mount is so rare?

Getting Rid of It:
You're joking, right? Vendors won't even accept this thing from you.

Filed under: Items, How-tos, Quests, Raiding, Phat Loot Phriday, Mounts

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