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Posts with tag battletag

Real ID Appear Offline option on the back burner for now

One of the questions we get asked fairly often in the Queue and other places is "Is Blizzard working on an 'appear offline' feature for the Battletag/Real ID friend's list?" I understand the desire for the feature: Sometimes I don't want to have everyone I know see that I'm online because I just want to chill and do something small-scale or by myself.

Sadly, it seems that feature is currently having some troubles being realized. According to Lore, it's hit some technical difficulties.

I'm fairly sad about this, and I hope they can eventually solve those difficulties and get this into existence ASAP.

Filed under: Blizzard, News items

Drama Mamas: When you need some breathing room in game

WoW players -- can't play with 'em, can't play without 'em. Most of us would agree that Azeroth is best when shared with a congenial group of others, but what if you find yourself saddled with overly needy or intrusive game buddies? Or perhaps you get along just fine for the most part, but things get sticky whenever you decide you'd like to chill out with some uninterrupted solo time.

Isn't there a nice way to tell someone to buzz off without hurting their feelings? There absolutely is -- so let's head off the drama before it happens with these techniques for friendly disengagement.

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Filed under: Drama Mamas

Why do we still have servers?

Why do we still have servers
I was wondering about it all day yesterday, considering the existence of cross-realm play, CRZ, that PvP, dungeon finder and LFR all pull across multiple servers why do we still have those servers at all? Are they a relic of the original game's design? Are they still physically necessary or could we simply have all these different servers exist as one large super-server that everyone in a region plays on? It certainly feels to me that, for better and for worse server communities are a thing of the past - I know a lot of people who play WoW, my friend's list is relatively hopping and my twitter feed even more so, but I haven't run a dungeon with random people on my realm since mid-Wrath and even then I didn't do it very often. Before the rise of dungeon finder groups, I either ran with a guild group or I didn't run, having soured on the experience after tanking BC heroics.

The way I currently play, I raid with my guild, run LFR occasionally (not very often) or queue for some dungeons either solo or with some Real ID/Battletag friends, do some retro raiding in the same fashion, and in general to me my server is almost completely meaningless. I play with and chat with people from all over the place, from Sisters of Elune to Norgannon to Malfurion to Kilrogg. If I could add EU players and chat with them, I'd have an even bigger friend's list. The people I know in game are people I've played with, people I've chatted with online for a while, but in very few cases are they people I've actually met here on my current server outside of guilds I've joined.

Of course, as I've argued before, personal experience isn't universal and anecdotal data isn't conclusive. I'm just one player. So the question becomes, what about you reading this now? How important is your server to you? It's very possible there are thriving server communities out there that would be damaged by a change that reduces server identity further and if so I think it would be useful to find out. If a single mega-server per region would be detrimental to people's playstyles, let us hear you. Positive or negative, your feedback is desired.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard

5 things Blizzard has done I thought they'd never do

5 things Blizzard has done I thought they'd never do
Transmogrification. That's the first and biggest thing Blizzard did that I thought they would never do, frankly. I not only never believed they'd do it, I didn't want them to do it. I argued against it. And now it's probably my favorite part of the game, bar none. It turns out I absolutely love playing dress up with orcs. And while transmog is my number one choice for this list, it is by far not the only surprise Blizzard has given me over the years.

So what else surprised me? What else did they do that I didn't see coming? To be honest, there are so many that narrowing it down to five is a bit hard for me. I never expected playable pandaren, for one thing. That's not going on the list, but it did surprise me. I'm going to do five aside from transmog, because I natter on about that one a lot.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard

What does community mean in World of Warcraft?

What does community mean in World of Warcraft
When I first started playing World of Warcraft, in late 2004 on the server Azjol-Nerub, I knew the people in the guild my wife introduced me to and that was about it. Via that guild, I eventually met people who brought me to another guild, one that raided fairly heavily. That guild moved to Norgannon, becoming one of its top raiding guilds up until the end of Wrath of the Lich King when it moved servers and factions, and I didn't go along for the ride. I instead moved to Cenarion Circle, then Sisters of Elune. In all of this, my sense of community in the game has always been very heavily guild focused.

This means that when people talk about having developed a sense of server community via pugging Stratholme or Shadow Labyrinth back in the day, they're talking about a game I never played. When I was pugging in early BC, before I started raiding again, I was miserable dealing with non-guildmates who often wouldn't listen, demanded a tank with more AoE than a warrior, refused to CC or refused to do so on the targets I asked, and were otherwise often awful. This isn't to say I didn't have any good pick up groups in those days, but if I wanted to get anything done I often had to wait for guild groups. One of the reasons I heralded the advent of the Dungeon Finder was that instead of bothering my guildies so I could get some runs in, I just queued up. No more "LF Tank and 2 CC for Shattered Halls, Paladin tank preferred" or whatever the flavor of the month is. Not that we were running Shattered Halls anymore by that point, of course.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Guilds, Raiding, Mists of Pandaria

What to expect from patch 5.0.4

What to expect from patch 504 ANY
Patch 5.0.4 will be here on Tuesday, Aug. 28. As with other pre-expansion patches, 5.0.4 will include some important changes that will reflect gameplay in Mists of Pandaria. To be perfectly clear, while this is a pre-patch for Mists, it is not Mists itself and shouldn't be confused with the game we'll all be nabbing on Sept. 25.

While there are some features from the beta that we'll see go live with this patch, others will not be released until the new expansion goes live in September. This is a confusing time for some players, because they're not quite sure what to expect when it comes to the pre-expansion patch. Will new features be rolled out? Will we see new instances or profession changes or playable pandaren?

To avoid confusion, here's a short primer on what you will and will not see in patch 5.0.4.

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Filed under: News items, Mists of Pandaria

Learn the basics of Diablo 3 gameplay

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Since Diablo II was released 12 years ago, it's safe to say that Diablo III will be the first Diablo title many people will have ever played. When we first mentioned that we would be providing some coverage of Blizzard's point-and-click dungeoneering action title, one of the first requests we received was a guide to Diablo basics. How do you play the game? What does it have in common with WoW?

We have you covered.

The core of Diablo gameplay is the mouse click. You do everything from combat to looting to movement with your mouse, and your interactions with your keyboard are extremely minimal overall. On Twitter recently, I noticed many people mentioning they were buying a new mouse specifically to use with Diablo III -- and that's not a bad idea. No, we're not talking a brand new $80 Razer Naga; we're talking some $10 to $15 thing you can pick up off of a department store shelf. You want a mouse that you're not going to mourn when your buttons inevitably give out from the mountain of abuse you're about to unleash upon them. Grab something cheap and disposable so that when it dies, you will consider it a victory -- just another technological corpse for the bone pile.

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Filed under: Diablo 3

Breakfast Topic: Further discussion of cross-faction raiding

Matthew Rossi recently discussed the possibility of cross-faction raiding. Those ideas always generate heat worthy of further discussion, so that's exactly what we'll do this morning.

With Real ID, the impending BattleTag system, and the increasing prevalence of social media usage in the World of Warcraft community, it's highly unlikely that all of your friends are on the same faction. In both the real world and the virtual, it has become easier and easier to meet people on the other side of faction lines. Even if all of your friends are on the same faction right now, who knows if that will remain true? You meet new people every day. It doesn't feel good to meet a new coworker, find out they play WoW, only to learn they're on the opposite faction. You'll never be able to play together. Well, you can, but you sure need to jump through a lot of hoops to do it ... like ditching your main character.

The social landscape of the game has evolved, but the binary faction lines remain static. Why not allow cross-faction raiding? I'm not calling for the abolition of a two-faction system entirely. Two independent stories for each faction still makes sense. The conflict between the Alliance and the Horde is still a part of the world we play in. However, if players are on our Real ID or BattleTag friends list, we must know them well enough that those faction lines don't matter. Why continue to use those faction lines in content where they are unnecessary?

Some raids do have unique content based on faction, that's true. It would be weird to fight for the Alliance as a Horde player in a raid such as the Argent Tournament, wouldn't it? I'm sure some creative Orb of Deception kludge could overcome that obstacle.

What say you, WoW Insider?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics

WoW Insider Weekly News Update for Dec. 16, 2011

The WoW Insider Weekly News Update is your source for all the biggest stories from the past week wrapped up in a neat little video package. Mathew McCurley hosts your quick look at this week's biggest news.

If you haven't already subscribed to the WoW Insider YouTube channel, you should!

This week's top stories include: Win a Nightsaber Cub loot card from WoWTCGLoot! Here's how to enter: Subscribe to the WoW Insider YouTube channel and comment on the video over on YouTube for a chance to win! We'll contact our winner via YouTube on Friday, Dec. 23.

Filed under: Podcasts, Podcasting, WoW Insider Show

Blizzard announces new Battle.net BattleTags

Blizzard has just announced and posted a FAQ about its upcoming Battle.net feature BattleTag, a feature separate from Real ID that connects players across all of Blizzard's games with a screen name rather than your own full name. BattleTags seems to be Blizzard's response to the community's privacy issues with Real ID, in which many players want to make new connections with people they meet in game but are not willing to share so much personal information. BattleTag will eventually have access to all of the grouping and queuing features that Real ID users currently have access to.

Not only will your BattleTag be your identifier across Blizzard games, but it will also be used as your forum handle on the community websites. These handles are not unique, so you could potentially have the same name as someone else, but you'll have an identification number that appears after your name in your profile so that people can find you and send you messages. BattleTags do not interrupt your Real ID friends or any other feature. Again, BattleTags are optional, and you are still able to post on the forums using your World of Warcraft characters or StarCraft II account. BattleTags are rolling out soon in the Diablo III beta and will be available for everyone at a later date.

Personally, this is exactly what I wanted from Real ID, now pared down to a manageable, private screen name. My real friends can stay on my Real ID list, and my online friends, guildmates, and other people can use my BattleTag. This new feature is a great response to players' concerns, and I cannot wait to try it. Hit the jump for the full FAQ and learn all about BattleTags.

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Filed under: Blizzard

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