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Posts with tag archaeology

Breakfast Topic: Could transmogrification save archaeology?

This Breakfast Topic has been brought to you by Seed, the AOL guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider's pages.

Ah, archaeology -- a secondary profession with so much potential in theory, and the mind-numbing death of many hours of playtime in reality. I was originally really excited about a global scavenger hunt as a downtime activity, but after skilling it up, I lost interest. Piecing together tons of vendor trash in the hopes of my next find's being a rare became just another grind for items.

Now that the Cataclysm expansion is winding down, I've been thinking about where archaeology could grow from here. Certainly there will be more toy-type items and account-bound epic gear to chase after, but what else could this profession bring to the game?

It occurred to me that with the coming of the transmogrification feature, digging around Azeroth could be made interesting again. Instead of adding a number of gray-quality artifacts to sell for pocket money, why not have the common finds be transmoggable art pieces? Think gray-quality versions of gear, good only for costume unlocks. What better way to bring old stuff back to the present than by having us literally dig it up? It could work as an avenue to bring back discontinued tier looks (imagine digging in Eastern Plaguelands for pieces of original Naxxramas raid gear) or even open up items that never were before available to players (like a giant totem skin for two-handed maces, so you can look like a tauren warrior from Warcraft III)!

Where else do you think archaeology could go? What do you think we could be digging up in the next expansion?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Guest Posts

Breakfast Topic: How do you feel after spending time with archaeology?

Clockwork Gnome
This Breakfast Topic has been brought to you by Seed, the AOL guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider's pages.

Right now, I'm taking a break from archaeology. I spent the days between the U.S. holidays of Memorial Day and Labor Day digging from two to six hours, flying up and down Kalimdor, in an attempt to get the Vial of the Sands. I felt someone within my guild should have it. While I had other guild members doing archaeology, they weren't dedicated -- no, the proper term is "crazy" -- enough to spend hours doing this. By the end of August, I didn't care about the items that got me 100 or 200 gold when vendored (Cat Statue with Emerald Eyes and Silver Scroll Case). I just wanted the recipe. Finally, after my fifth canopic jar, there it was. I had all the mats ready, and the day I got it, I could become a dragon.

I almost never use the mount. If someone wants a ride, I transform and we go once or twice around town. But as my permanent ride? No. It's too big and awkward for my tastes.

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Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Archaeology, Guest Posts

The OverAchiever: Mountain O' Mounts from professions

Every Thursday, The Overachiever shows you how to work toward those sweet achievement points. Today, we are convinced that archaeology's RNG won't apply to us.

There are a number of interesting (and by interesting, perhaps I mean "occasionally very expensive and likely to drive you insane via RNG-laden accessibility") mounts available from professions, though for some of them, you'll have to be a practitioner in good standing before you'll ever be able to learn them.

Regrettably, I am the bearer of some very bad news this week concerning the Vial of the Sands for all those of you who like circumventing the highest costs in the game.

Also read:

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Filed under: Achievements, The Overachiever

Patch 4.1 hotfixes for June 1

Don't make the mistake of thinking that because the patch 4.2 PTR is up that patch 4.1 won't see any changes, because today's round of hotfixes will teach you otherwise. Once again, Blizzard's Zarhym brings us a grocery bag of class, raid, and other fixes, including the following.
  • Warlocks will no longer be able to give people the increased buff from Improved Demonic Tactics when they switch specs or otherwise lose the talent, and their Glyph of Imp will now not affect all warlock pets.
  • Maloriak in BWD is now going to prefer to cast his Flash Freeze on ranged players and won't cast it on a player specced to tank. Tanks can still have it chained onto them, however.
  • Bountiful Bags guild perk will no longer create more keystone items from archaeology finds.
  • The goblin racial Best Deal Anywhere will now only work with vendors you have reputation with and won't stack with exalted guild reputation dealing with guild vendors.
The full list of hotfixes after the beep.

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Filed under: News items, Cataclysm, Hotfixes

WoW Moviewatch: Archaeology

I sometimes feel like no portion of the game is really real to me until it's featured in machinima. Until someone's put the game dynamic to music and video, it just doesn't tend to stick out in my head. I've been pretty successful at ignoring Harrison Jones in Cataclysm, but thanks to Greyfoo, I'll have to learn Archaeology.

Greyfoo has put his immortal stamp on Harrison Jones. For the first time, I actually care a tad about the master of WoW antiquity. And Greyfoo's explanation of why Jones does what he does makes the character a little more empathetic.

This isn't the first time Greyfoo has changed our opinion about the game. "I hated the draenei until Exodar Disco," says Mat McCurley. "I love Velen now, and I like their story."
Interested in the wide world of machinima? We have new movies every weekday here on WoW Moviewatch! Have suggestions for machinima we ought to feature? Toss us an email at

Filed under: WoW Moviewatch

Patch 4.1: Even more new archaeology items

The last build rolled out on the patch 4.1 PTR introduced some cool new items, but Blizzard wasn't done there. The build rolled out today included even more! These items include: Technically, the turtle shell was in the last build, but we misinterpreted the item when we saw it on Wowhead. Our initial guess was that it would be a drop in Firelands due to a display bug giving it the heroic label, and we assumed its itemization was unfinished. However, we eventually came to the conclusion that it's extremely likely that the shield is actually an archaeology award -- it's bind on account. It will lose its current heroic label between now and when the patch launches.

These items are continuing Blizzard's effort to populate neglected research types. Trolls needed a little more love beyond the endless journey to find Zin'rokh, and fossils needed even more love. An epic shield, another pet, and the other additions from previous builds will go a long way toward making fossil dig sites less ... painful.

WoW Patch 4.1 is on the PTR and WoW Insider has all the latest news for you -- from previews of the revamped Zul'Aman and Zul'Gurub to new valor point mechanics and new archaeology items.

Filed under: Archaeology

The Queue: There's a surprise at the end

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

Today's edition of The Queue discusses the nature of the death knight, the recent lack of creepy whispers, the nature of the vrykul, and ... something special. Enjoy!

Oscar asked:

Is it me or does it feel as if the whole "caster" part of DKs was just wholly abandoned and just being confined to Death Coil and a few other abilities?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Queue, Archaeology

New archaeology items coming in patch 4.1

If you remember the recent Ask the Devs chat that the fine folks at Blizzard posted, you'll remember the following exchange:

Ask the Devs - Answers #1
Q: Are there any plans to bring new items to Archaeology with each future patch? - Idej (North America/ANZ)

A: We may not make it every patch, but we designed Archaeology specifically with this kind of expandability in mind. Our most immediate plans are to add rare items to the Vrykul and especially Troll races, since they have so few, and add more to Fossils in general since you end up with so many Fossil sites. We also have some plans to make it slightly easier to focus on races upon which you want to focus.

It appears we may be seeing the first of these rare items in the datafiles, as the Vrykul Drinking Horn, the Troll Drum, and the Ancient Amber now exist. These three rares flesh out three races that had limited reason to want to solve them. Now we're all just waiting for a means to focus on the races we want, am I right?
WoW Patch 4.1 is on the PTR and WoW Insider has all the latest news for you. From previews of the revamped Zul'Aman and Zul'Gurub to new Valor point mechanics to the new Archaeology items.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, Cataclysm

Blues explain nature of archaeology cooldowns

Several players and Community Manager Lylirra shared some discussion today on the official World of Warcraft forums about the cooldowns of novelty items crafted through the archaeology profession.

In the thread, the original poster suggested that the cooldowns of certain novelty items were too long in comparison to others and that Blizzard should consider fixing the discrepancies. The poster used Pendant of the Scarab Storm and Bones of Transformation as an example, noting that both items have a vanity effect that lasts 20 seconds but a cooldown difference of 90 minutes.

Lylirra responded, explaining that the cooldowns, though seemingly random, were chosen with specific issues in mind. She explains that with the Pendant of the Scarab Storm specifically, developers were concerned that the item's effect might strain certain players' computers.

Archaeology Items' Cooldowns
The current cooldown was chosen deliberately, but I can see why you might think otherwise (100 minutes is kind of strange for a cooldown time).

Anyway, summoning a harem of scarabs can be pretty taxing on some systems, so there were some initial concerns about putting the pendant on a short cooldown. Based on the feedback we've received, though, we're looking into reducing it. We agree that the effect is pretty cool and would be nice to use it more frequently.

Personally, a little lore logic behind the items might be nice as well. How is it that my character can summon a god every 3 minutes, but it takes 10 minutes to round up some sassy dwarven ladies?

Filed under: News items, Archaeology

Addon Spotlight: Archaeology made easy

Each week, WoW Insider brings you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which focuses on the backbone of the WoW gameplay experience: the user interface. Everything from bags to bars, buttons to DPS meters and beyond -- your addons folder will never be the same. This week, tol'vir rares never drop for Mathew, even though Mathew is a good boy who doesn't kill level 23 worgen while doing archaeology. Okay, I lied.

Now that archaeology has been buffed to a certain degree with new tol'vir digsites and a lower cooldown on Survey, it's time to get a little addon-serious about the secondary profession. A few weeks back, I talked about one archaeology addon that took some of the interface away for me, because it was a three-click pain in the butt to get to the artifact counter. Now, with the recent changes, that isn't the case. In that time, however, loads of new tools have come to the forefront of the archaeology community. Read on for archaeology made easy.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, AddOn Spotlight, Archaeology

Patch 4.0.6 PTR: Sell prices for common archaeology artifacts changed (again)

After the hoopla that went on over a 1,000g sell price on the Word of Empress Zoe, Blizzard has changed the sell values on all of the common archaeology artifacts again on the PTR. Word of Empress Zoe's sell price to vendors has gone down significantly, but to compensate, many other commons have had their prices increased to even out the spread of money-makers in the profession. Thanks to Wowhead for the comprehensive list. You can check out the full table of common sell prices after the jump.

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Filed under: Cataclysm, Archaeology

The OverAchiever: A guide to basic archaeology and its achievements

Every Thursday, The Overachiever shows you how to work toward those sweet achievement points. This week, we start digging.

You guys remember the Dalaran fountain, right? I loved that thing. It was a wonderful, idiosyncratic little peek into the thoughts of an array of Azeroth's lore figures, both the important and the obscure. It added a number of little touches to the game's story that we never would have seen otherwise, and Blizzard even gave you an achievement for getting all the coins. I thought that whatever mad genius came up with the Dalaran fountain should have been chained to a desk at Blizzard and left there until he came up with more ideas like it.

Well, they can finally let that guy off the lead. Archaeology is kind of like the Dalaran fountain, except instead of being crammed into a tiny corner of Dalaran, it's everywhere in the world, and instead of concerning 53 people who made wishes, it affords you a peek into seven civilizations and the world's fossil record.

Pretty sweet, eh? Well, you're going to have to work for it. If you're completely new to archaeology, I've included a short set of instructions here, but otherwise, we're going to head straight for the civilizations and achievements related to WoW's newest profession.

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

Addon Spotlight: Minimal Archaeology

Each week, WoW Insider brings you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which focuses on the backbone of the WoW gameplay experience: the user interface. Everything from bags to bars, buttons to DPS meters and beyond -- your addons folder will never be the same. This week, we go digging for surprises.

Greetings, friends. I trust Cataclysm content has been as fun for you as it has for me? Finally having settled in, I've started to power through my trade skills and new professions. Archaeology was something I purposefully abstained from in the beta, mostly because it was the piece of new content I wanted to experience fresh. So after reaching 85 and heading off on new archaeological adventures, I was instantly hooked.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, AddOn Spotlight

Archaeology grants group-wide buffs in Cataclysm 5-man dungeons

Archaeologists have the ability to give a group-wide dungeon buff to all their party members upon entering Cataclysm's 5-man dungeons. Each buff is gained through a repeatable quest during which the appropriately leveled archaeologist turns in a specific keystone to activate the zone-wide buffs. The specific turn-in locations are near the beginning of each dungeon. Here are a list of the buffs available:
Thanks, Uriah!

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm has destroyed Azeroth as we know it; nothing is the same! In WoW Insider's Guide to Cataclysm, you can find out everything you need to know about WoW's third expansion, from leveling up a new goblin or worgen to breaking news and strategies on endgame play.

Filed under: Cataclysm, Archaeology

Archaeology receives stealth buff

Yesterday saw a slew of hotfixes, but it appears that today's maintenance has added a stealth buff to archaeology. Previously, all surveys in an area were only allowing three fragments per successful survey, making the archaeology grind a little long. Today, it appears that surveying an area is allowing anywhere from three to six fragments per survey, a substantial buff for those trying to complete artifacts at a speedy pace.

While there has been no official blue post regarding the change, it has been verified in game. For more information about the archaeology profession and how to get started, check out our Archaeology 101 video, courtesy of Robin Torres.


World of Warcraft: Cataclysm has destroyed Azeroth as we know it; nothing is the same! In WoW Insider's Guide to Cataclysm, you can find out everything you need to know about WoW's third expansion, from brand new races to revamped quests and zones. Visit our Cataclysm news category for the most recent posts having to do with the Cataclysm expansion.

Filed under: News items, Cataclysm

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