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Posts with tag aspects

Know Your Lore, Tinfoil Hat Edition: The whispers of Azeroth

Know Your Lore, Tinfoil Hat Edition The fascination of Sargeras SUN
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.

Sargeras: Fallen Titan, founder of the Burning Legion and destroyer of worlds. Since his fall from his place as the premier champion of the Titans, Sargeras has enjoyed utmost success in his mission of destruction, bringing down endless worlds and wreaking havoc across the universe. Yet one world has eluded his grasp, time and time again -- Azeroth. Though the Burning Legion has visited Azeroth countless times, it has yet to sink its claws into the world and wrench it apart.

Despite this, the Legion continues to try. There may be hundreds, thousands, possibly even millions of distinct worlds out there ripe for annihilation, but the Burning Legion and Sargeras himself have focused with certainty on our little world. Is it a matter of revenge? Is it a matter of stubborn persistence? Or is there some other reason we're the focus of the universe's heralds of hatred? What is Sargeras' fascination with our tiny planet, anyway?

Today's Know Your Lore is a Tinfoil Hat edition, meaning the following is a look into what has gone before with pure speculation on why and what is to come as a result. These speculations are merely theories and shouldn't be taken as fact or official lore.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Know Your Lore, Tinfoil Hat Edition: The secret of Pandaria

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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.
"It's just possible that the curious race we're going to meet in this mystic land, may just teach us a thing or two about who we are, and why we fight." -- Chris Metzen, BlizzCon 2011
What do we know about Mists of Pandaria? We've been told that the major conflict highlighted in this expansion will be between Alliance and Horde. We've also been told that this will be one of the bloodiest wars since the days of Warcraft II. We've been told that there will be consequences for our actions, and we were told when the expansion was announced at BlizzCon that the pandaren have something to teach us. So what's up with that? And what's up with the crazy map making a reappearance?

That's the funny thing -- it's all interconnected, possibly. Today we're going on a Tinfoil Hat trip through Mists of Pandaria to talk about my favorite crazy map, some theories on Azeroth, and why exactly Garrosh needs to be removed.

Today's Know Your Lore is a Tinfoil Hat edition, meaning the following is a look into what has gone before with pure speculation on how it happened and what is to come as a result. These speculations are merely theories and shouldn't be taken as fact or official lore.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

The Light and How to Swing It: Blinding Ultraxion with the Holy Light

ultraxion
Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Every Sunday, Chase Christian invites you to discuss the finer side of the paladin class: the holy specialization. Feel free to email me with any questions you want answered, like why paladins are so awesome.

As the fifth boss of Dragon Soul, Ultraxion is the gateway boss to pursuing Deathwing and stopping the second cataclysm. While Thrall and the dragon aspects are busy with the Dragon Soul itself, we're tasked with defending Wyrmrest Temple from Ultraxion's assaults. Simple, right?

Ultraxion is an incredibly simple fight for tanks and damage dealers. In fact, it's already being called the Patchwerk-fight of this tier. Aside from a few extra button presses, non-healers are simply tasked with bringing Ultraxion down as quickly as possible. Healers, on the other hand, play a very special role in this fight. We're fighting against rapidly increasing AoE damage to the raid, and the aspects themselves step in to help us accomplish our task. Ultraxion is the healer-centric fight of this tier, like Baleroc and Chimaeron before him.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

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

Thrall: Twilight of the Aspects discounted for preorder on Amazon

Christie Golden's second Cataclysm novel, Thrall: Twilight of the Aspects, is coming out on July 19, and Amazon has the cheapest copies around. The hardcover edition is currently available for preorder for $16.21 and the Kindle version for just $12.99.

The first Cataclysm novel by Golden, The Shattering, told the prequel story of the newest expansion. Garrosh's rise to power and duel with Cairne, as well as Anduin Wrynn's involvement with the dwarven civil war, took center stage, while Thrall left leadership of the Horde to train as a shaman on the orcish home world of Draenor.

Thrall: Twilight of the Aspects, continues Thrall's journey as a pivotal personality as the cataclysm and Deathwing ravage Azeroth. Thrall's journey will begin with a task for Ysera that eventually becomes fraught with green dragons, nightmares, and a bleak vision from Ysera herself, the Hour of Twilight. We will know more in a week, and I couldn't be more excited.

Filed under: Lore, Cataclysm

Cataclysm Post-Mortem: Hyjal

Alex Ziebart and Mathew McCurley (that's me) decided to give each Cataclysm zone the once-over now that we're many months out from the release of the expansion. In this post-mortem series, we'll examine (in our own opinions and words) what worked and what didn't work in terms of story, quests, and overall feel for the zones and the cool moments that dotted the landscape. Join us for a discussion about Cataclysm's new level 80 to 85 content and what made the cut as the most compelling experiences.

Hyjal is home to the majestic world tree Nordrassil, once under siege by the Burning Legion and Archimonde, an eredar leader and lieutenant of Sargeras. In Warcraft III, we vanquished Archimonde at Nordrassil and subsequently went back and ended his campaign in Hyjal through the Caverns of Time. Now, Ragnaros the Firelord has returned to Azeroth with the help of Deathwing and has invaded the sacred mountain with one goal -- destroy the wardens of Hyjal and burn their tree to the ground.

Hyjal's story

Mathew: I had an odd experience with the story at Hyjal, mostly because at first, I couldn't have given a damn about the druids and the Emerald Dream and all of that. The first time I went through Hyjal, it was a sprint, and I never stopped to smell the roses, since we were racing to 85.

It was only after I did Hyjal a second or third time that I truly dug in and found the wonderful story of the zone. Now, I am 100% involved in the Hyjal story and am really excited to see where it's going. Now, the druids are my best friends, and there is nothing I want to do more than help ancients punch fire elementals in their fiery faces.

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Filed under: Cataclysm

Know Your Lore: Azshara and the Blue Dragonflight


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.

Of all the zones to get face lifts in Cataclysm, none deserved it so much as Azshara, the formerly level 50 zone that had a scant 32 quests available during vanilla. Azshara was just a small part of the former home of Queen Azshara and the Highborne, and one would think a zone with that kind of potential would have more to offer. In Cataclysm, the zone has become a level 10-20 area for Horde, and some of the zone's lore offerings have been expanded upon. Others raise more questions than they answer.

In between all the goblin advancements, one place directly addressed was Lake Mennar, former home to a ton of blue dragons for no discernible reason whatsoever. Lurking nearby was Azuregos, the batty blue dragon who was an outdoor boss and the key to the blue scepter shard for opening the gates of Ahn'Qiraj. Lake Mennar proper served as little more than a farming area for the Azure Whelpling. Why was the Blue Dragonflight so fascinated with Lake Mennar? There's a story behind that, and it goes all the way back to the War of the Ancients.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Scattered Shots: ViperNotify and aspect swapping

Scattered Shots is your weekly guide to improving your Hunter skills, brought to you by Jessica "Lassirra" Klein of The Hunter's Mark, covering a variety of Huntery topics. Today, we'll be talking about how to effectively swap between aspects to improve your performance.

Pike from Aspect of the Hare published a post recently, "Aspect of the Viper and You", in which she describes what Aspect of the Viper is and when to use it. For raiding and leveling Hunters alike, Aspect of the Viper is a powerful tool to reduce downtime when mana is running low. Stopping to drink or popping mana potions is almost obsolete thanks to this great aspect, and Pike's article goes a long way in teaching newbies and veterans alike when it's time to put that aspect to use. Today, I'd like to take that idea further and discuss more ways to help put Aspect of the Viper to work for you.

For raiding Hunters, it's extremely easy to switch to Aspect of the Viper during a fight to regen mana and then forget to swap back to Aspect of the Dragonhawk once your mana bar is full again. I know in the past I've had less than stellar numbers on the meters simply because I forgot to switch aspects! Sure, swapping aspects should be a no-brainer, but simple mistakes are easy to make when you're dodging slimes, fire and big ol' dragons. For that reason, I started using ViperNotify. This add-on is very simple and light weight. All it does is notify you via pretty blue alert text that appears on your screen (similar to a raid alert) that your mana bar is full but Aspect of the Viper is still active. It also plays a quick little ding sound (which is, amazingly, not the slightest bit annoying) to catch your attention in case you missed the warning text. There are, of course, several other mods that behave similarly, but ViperNotify is the one I use. This one simple add-on makes it much easier to ensure the best possible performance from your two primary aspects.

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Filed under: Hunter, Tips, Add-Ons, Guides, Buffs, (Hunter) Scattered Shots

WoW Moviewatch: Warden of Eternity



I'm not sure whether to call Warden of Eternity by Karash "high concept." It certainly fits some of the hallmarks of that idea, but I feel like the pacing might slightly miss the mark. However, in the very least, his epic machinima is firmly rooted in some of the most noble and recognizable lore offered by World of Warcraft. You should recognize Illidan and the dragon Aspects, in the very last. The movie was first created in Karash's native German, and it took him about a year to get subtitles created in English.

In my opinion, the "Warden of Eternity" is pretty dang well made. Its panning shots, use of characters, and chosen models are all strong. The voice actors did a good job. I actually really enjoyed the fact that it was in German, because that language really sounds right coming from dragons and epic characters. (Maybe it's the old Rammstein fan in me.)

I do, however, wish the pacing were a little faster. It drags on a tad. This gives you plenty of time to soak in the happenings and the scenery, but I don't need quite that much time. Overall, a very solid movie, and I hope Karash continues to make more.


[Via Warcraft Movies]

If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

Previously on Moviewatch ..

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, WoW Moviewatch

Hunter aspects bugged in 3.0.8

We covered a couple of known bugs in 3.0.8 yesterday, namely some animation errors (which we're anxiously awaiting being able to log into the game and grab some video of), and some problems with casting of the Warlock spell Ritual of Summoning.

And now Hunters have a bug:

Some Hunter aspects "behave" as if they have a global cooldown.

This should not be, and will be fixed soon (we assume). Patch 3.0.8 was going to remove them, but alas we'll have to wait to have this function properly.

As far as what aspects are bugged, and under what conditions, we don't know yet. Keep an eye out later when the realms are up for more information.

Filed under: Hunter, Bugs, News items

The Queue: Pandapocalypse


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.

On Friday I responded to a question regarding Pandaren, and it turns out I'm about half wrong. Partially right, but also partially wrong, which is certainly a problem. My answer was based off of something I talked about with a random Blizzard employee, but in hindsight that's a pretty poor move on my part, they wouldn't necessarily know the little inner workings of one or two departments within the company. What I said was refuted with quotes from J. Allen Brack and Chris Metzen, which I'm willing to put more weight in as far as game lore goes. The Chinese did, indeed, have a problem with the Pandaren being in-game.

I was right in that there are no laws against virtual pandas getting shivved or whatever, but there definitely was an issue with the Pandaren race, culturally. It's much more likely it just ran into a lot of friction when it came down to dealing with censors and the cultural shift, and it became not worth it to risk losing players over. I'm sure the fact that the Pandarens' original design was much more Japanese (see above) than Chinese didn't help, but that was shifted in the right direction eventually and may not have had an actual impact at all. And with that said...

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

Ask a Lore Nerd: All about dragons


Welcome to Ask a Lore Nerd, where each week blogger and columnist Alex Ziebart answers your questions about the lore and history of the World of Warcraft. Ask your questions in the comments section below, and we'll try to answer it in a future edition.

The last Ask a Lore Nerd brought a whole load of Dragon-related questions, likely a result of the huge amounts of Dragon lore we've been given in Wrath of the Lich King. So today, we're going purely Dragon themed, and I'll be hitting a few of the bigger questions. Let's get started!

Ves asked...

Who are all these humanoids aiding the blue dragonflight? I did the quest where you find out one of them was a Troll forced to work for them under the threat of harm for his family, and I assume some of them are blue dragons taking human form becuase sometimes blowing up the world requires opposable thumbs, but surely they can't all be either dragons or slaves.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, Lore, Wrath of the Lich King, Ask a Lore Nerd

Aspects, auras, Survival Instinct off GCD; new aspect

Yes, it's true. The following will now be off the global cooldown in Wrath of the Lich King, but will have a 1-second cooldown of their own to switch between them:

The new Druid talent Survival Instincts is also being taken off the GCD, which I can really appreciate - tanking gets quite frenetic.

But that's not all! After putting aspects off the GCD, the devs decided they weren't happy about how it made you feel like you had to "stance-dance" to Monkey every time someone came into melee range. So they're introducing a whole new aspect: Aspect of the Dragonhawk, which combines the benefits Monkey and Hawk into one aspect. This spell will be learned at level 75 and 80, instead of learning new ranks of Hawk. The idea, says Ghostcrawler, is that you'll never cast Hawk or Monkey again after 75; you'll just use Dragonhawk for fighting and Viper when you need some mana back.

I have mixed reactions to this change. It'll be nice for hunters, who already have enough spells to deal with between shots, melee, traps, pet skills, etc. However, it seems like they might as well just make +AP and +dodge built in to Hunters, remove Monkey, Hawk, and Dragonhawk, and put a penalty on Viper corresponding to the now-innate +AP/+dodge. The whole Aspects system has always felt a bit half-baked to me, to be honest. Also, I'm not quite sold on the Dragonhawk name, but I guess it's better than "Monkeyhawk."

Filed under: Druid, Hunter, Paladin, Wrath of the Lich King

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