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Posts with tag blizzcon

Garrisons: Player housing in Warlords of Draenor

People have wanted it forever and now, it's finally here: World of Warcraft is implementing its own unique form of player housing, the Garrison feature. Quite frankly, if you ever played really old school Dungeons and Dragons, the Garrison feels a lot like the old dominions that players could get in the Companion rules. Based on the way building a settlement felt in the original Warcraft RTS games, building your Garrison gives you benefits including epic gear, access to professions you don't normally have in a limited fashion, and customize the buildings in the Garrison for specific customizable benefits.

The Garrison system includes NPC followers who can go on missions for you while you're offline for various benefits as well. This ends up nearly being a complete minigame - my first impression is that you can almost play an entirely new RTS minigame while playing WoW.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, BlizzCon

Metzen reveals Garrosh "sets things in motion" in Warlords of Draenor

Following the Opening Ceremonies, Chris Metzen sat down with the hosts (Kat Hunter and Geoff Keighley) and revealed a few new tidbits about the upcoming expansion.
  • Garrosh Hellscream is not the end boss of the new expansion.
  • However, Garrosh 'sets things in motion' with the aid of an unknown accomplice with mysterious time-travel abilities.
  • Once put on trial, Garrosh escapes before he can be judged, and returns to Draenor in the past to prevent the one great mistake that led to the creation of the Old Horde - the drinking of the Blood of Mannoroth.
  • At present, they don't know who will be the orcish faction leader. While Thrall is the obvious choice, Metzen would prefer Saurfang or Eitrigg "but we may change it later".
  • Thrall will be using his hammer more in this expansion.
So there you have it, more details on how the Warlords of Draenor arise.


Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Lore, BlizzCon

Hearthstone Open Beta next month

Rob Pardo, chief creative officer and go-to guy for Hearthstone announcements, has a whole lot of news for us involving that game. But one of the most interesting (especially for people who aren't in the closed beta yet, but who want to be) is that, if you haven't gotten into the closed beta, you won't have to wait much longer. Pardo announced that, yes, Hearthstone will have its open beta "within a month... although, it's Blizzard time, so maybe January".

So if you're desperate to start experiencing Blizzard's entirely online TCG, take heart. You will have your chance soon enough. Literally Blizzard soon. Rob said so!

Filed under: Blizzard, BlizzCon, Hearthstone Insider

WoW Archivist: Controversies of BlizzCon

The Failocalypse Game

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?

BlizzCon has been no stranger to controversy. As the premier Blizzard event, the stakes are high. Players are heavily invested in both the weekend and the games, and sometimes emotions run hot. We've already got a potential controversy brewing for 2013's event. Players have expressed strong feelings both for and against a possible "Warlords of Draenor" concept for the next expansion, and we know little at this point aside from the name and what it could imply.

In light of Blink 182's presence at the convention, Blizzard also asked attendees to wear clothes. It could be a truly wild BlizzCon this year!

Let's look back at other controversies from the past six BlizzCons.

The first BlizzCon

In October 2005, BlizzCon made its debut to enthusiastic crowds. However, it was hardly the massively anticipated event, with tickets selling out in seconds, that it is today. Tickets were $125, and the total attendance was a mere 8000. To put this in perspective, BlizzCon 2010 had 27,000 fans. Because so few tickets were available and "virtual tickets" did not yet exist, Murky, the pet given out to attendees, is still one of the rarest pets in the game. (Lurky isn't the same.)

The big reveal in 2005 was WoW's first expansion, The Burning Crusade. With that announcement came several big changes to the game. Outland, flying mounts, jewelcrafting, Karazhan, the Caverns of Time, linked auction houses (rather than each city having its own) -- players embraced all of these. Blood elves had their detractors, for both lore and aesthetic reasons, but most were sold on the idea.

Glaringly omitted, however, was any specific word on the new Alliance race.

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Filed under: BlizzCon, WoW Archivist

Drama Mamas: Don't be caught being That Guy at BlizzCon

BlizzCon 2013 is the year's richest opportunity to hobnob with fellow WoW enthusiasts. Thanks to Blizzard's polished event management, you can expect an entertaining weekend whether you're a party animal, a die-hard e-sports fan, a cosplay enthusiast, or simply squeeing at the opportunity to rub up against all things Blizzard.

Make no mistake: With something in the neighborhood of 30,000 fans expected to attend, BlizzCon is most assuredly a social event. You'll be interacting with a great many people in close quarters, some of whom will be eager to meet you and some who won't. (The Drama Mamas will be there, too -- say hello at the WoW Insider/Wowhead Meetup on Thursday night, or come rest your tired dogs and review the weekend's fun with Drama Mama Lisa and others from the WoW Insider staff at the Meeting Stone at 4 p.m. Saturday afternoon.)

Connecting with guildmates face to face for the first time? Meeting Blizzard staffers and well-known members of the WoW community? Making new WoW friends? Just enjoying the show? Bring it on -- but let's avoid bringing the drama by clarifying how not to act like That Guy in what's sure to be a spectacular nexus of WoW geeks and Azerothian energy.

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Filed under: Drama Mamas

15 Minutes of Fame: Road to BlizzCon cosplay -- the grind to perfection

There's simply something about Amanda. When we first spied her making the rounds with her stunning green-eyed paladin at BlizzCon 2010, we found ourselves captivated. Yet Amanda wasn't a finalist in 2010. She didn't draw crowds by displaying huge swaths of bare skin, parading up and down the promenade in front of the convention center. Not a seamstress, she doesn't even craft all of her costumes' parts and pieces personally by hand.

What Amanda Wisley does is cosplay with heart. The die-hard fan outsources her imagination to create costumes that exemplify the spirit she sees in the game she loves. This WoW lover loves to bring her visions to life, sharing them over long hours walking the convention floor and grounds to visit with other fans. But while this year's BlizzCon will see her buried inside a full fur suit as a pandaren monk, will her hopes of participating in Blizzard's official costume contest get buried as well?

In an upsetting discovery made long after tickets had been purchased and her costume was in progress, Amanda learned early last month that she'd not been lucky enough to snag one of the coveted sign-ups for the costume contest. She's been assured that she's high on the waiting list -- but after months of preparation, a successful race for BlizzCon tickets, booking air travel and accommodations, and of course all the expenses of creating her costume itself, will she get her shot at walking across the BlizzCon stage?

Take a look at the emotional highs and lows of this determined cosplayer's road to BlizzCon 2013 as her costume and itinerary laboriously come together.

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Filed under: Interviews, 15 Minutes of Fame

Five features I really want from the next expansion

So everyone's handily speculating on just what the next expansion will be, and what it will have and not have. That's pretty awesome. I love speculating. So in the spirit of things, I've decided to throw my hat in the ring and natter on about what I'd love to see from the next expansion, whatever it ends up being.

Let's just jump right into it. What stuff do I think would be awesome?

An overhaul of the leveling/alt process

I definitely think we need to reconsider how we deal with alts. I'd love to see a system that reduced the time you had to spend getting them leveled once you got the first one to max - heirlooms work for that, but that long-rumored heirloom tab would make it a lot easier. Another thing which would definitely help are more heirlooms like Hellscream's Decapitator - our current heirlooms don't take us all the way to max level the way it will, and it's also useful now as a raid-level item an alt can make use of. It's an experiment I hope they continue.

I've seen some arguments that we should be able to start a high-level alt to skip over a lot of the leveling process, especially as we get closer and closer to the likely new level cap of 100. If that was implemented, it would need to be done carefully, but I'd definitely support some way to preview a class at or near max level so you could figure out if you'll like it or cut down on having to do the full 1 to 100 (or whatever it ends up being) march again.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, The Burning Crusade, BlizzCon, Wrath of the Lich King, Cataclysm, Mists of Pandaria

Please keep your clothes on at BlizzCon

Just something you should keep in mind. The folks at the BlizzCon Countdown podcast presented this clipping from the Orange Country Register, letting you know - public nudity is frowned upon at the convention.



Since I like to be thorough, I went digging, and sure enough the OC Register has the original story. In addition to warning BlizzCon attendees not to emulate any Blink 182 videos (a sound policy) it also has a pretty rocking picture of a woman named Carissa Creveling dressed up as a Diablo 3 Barbarian. Carissa, I'm sincerely impressed by your costume. Especially that axe.

So to sum up - don't be naked in public at BlizzCon, Carissa has a really cool Barbarian cosplay, and I'm going to be watching BlizzCon via the Virtual Ticket, so I'm going to be as naked as I want and y'all can just seethe knowing I'm free as a bird while you swelter. Teach you all for going to the party without me.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, News items, BlizzCon

BlizzCon 2013 schedule app now available for Android, iPhone

Blizzcon 2013 schedule app now available for Android, iPhone
Wondering how to keep all of the events and panels at Blizzcon 2013 straight? Or just how to get around that incredibly large convention center? There's an app for that -- the BlizzCon schedule app, first released for BlizzCon 2011, has been updated for this year's festivities. Both the iPhone and Android versions have received snazzy new updates with an all new map of the convention center as well as this year's schedule of events and panels.

But that's not all! This year's update has also added new features and social media integration with Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, so you can share your experience as you experience it. In addition, the mobile app will also have access to all the free BlizzCon video streams, so you can watch all the action, even if you're not present for it in person. And the best part? The app is completely free. The app for BlizzCon 2011 was tremendously handy to have while wandering the convention center -- if you're attending BlizzCon 2013, I highly recommend picking up the updated version for easy access to maps and schedules while you're on the go.

Filed under: BlizzCon

Enter to win a BlizzCon ticket

Today we're giving away ten (10) BlizzCon tickets. There isn't much time left before the convention, so keep these details in mind:
  • This contest will close at 11:59 p.m. on November 1. That's today.
  • Shortly after, our ten winners will be selected at random and contacted via the email address bound to the social media account you use to comment on our site. If we don't receive a response within 24 hours, you forfeit the prize.
  • This giveaway does not include airfare or lodging. Getting to the convention is your responsibility. Before entering, seriously consider whether you can realistically make it to Anaheim on such short notice.
As usual, simply comment on this post to enter for a chance two win. You must be 18 years of age or older and a legal resident of the United States or Canada (excluding Quebec). You may only enter once.

Filed under: BlizzCon

Innkeeper's Invitational player highlights continue

Innkeeper's Invitational competitors
Last week we covered Blizzard's highlight of the first four of the eight participants in this year's inagural Inkeeper's Invitational BlizzCon Hearthstone tournament. This week Blizzard released their mini-interviews with the second four competitors: Day[9], Trump, Artosis, and Kripparrian.

As expected, the Q&As cover the same questions as before, and as before, many of the answers are delightful and entertaining. This group of competitors seems lively and fun, and I'm sure they are all looking forward to their chance to square off against each other at BlizzCon next week. Oh my goodness, BlizzCon is next week! For those Hearthstone devotees among our reader base, these interviews are likely to be interesting and perhaps even educational, as each of the four competitors discusses their five must-have Arena card picks and why, as well as their most feared and respected opponents. We look forward to watching the tournament as it unfolds and to see who takes first prize!


Filed under: Hearthstone Insider

Rumor: 'Vikings' star Travis Fimmel to play lead role in Warcraft movie

'Vikings' star Travis Fimmel to play lead role in Warcraft movie
Variety is reporting that Travis Fimmel, who plays Ragnar Lothbrok in the History Channel series Vikings, is set to star in the upcoming Warcraft movie. A formal offer hasn't been presented yet, but their sources say he will be playing one of the four lead roles in the film. Last month, it was reported that Paula Patton (Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol) was in negotiations for one of the lead roles. Colin Farrell has reportedly been offered a lead but it's uncertain how likely he is to sign on.

The plot of the movie has been a carefully guarded secret and all we really know is there will be four lead characters. We should find out more at BlizzCon where there will be a panel dedicated to the Warcraft movie with Duncan Jones (Director), Chris Metzen, and Rob Pardo. Warcraft will hit theaters on December 18, 2015.

Filed under: Warcraft Movie

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

BlizzCon attendees to receive free Virtual Tickets

BlizzCon Attendees will receive free Virtual Tickets
If you're attending BlizzCon this year, you may have already seen the massive schedule of events and panels for this year's convention. In addition, you may have quietly wondered to yourself how exactly you were going to see absolutely everything you could while you were there. The bad news is, there is absolutely no way you're going to be able to physically attend every panel. The good news is that Blizzard is now providing free Virtual Tickets to all attendees as part of the goody bags, so you can catch up on any panels you may have missed after the convention is over.

Phenteo
If you've ever attended BlizzCon in person, you've probably experienced the existential dilemma caused when a must-see panel overlaps with a can't-miss tournament or other essential event. Since we can't grant you the power to exist in two places at once, we're instead giving BlizzCon 2013 attendees access to Virtual Ticket online streams so they can catch replays of the stuff they might have missed after the show. This year, the code in attendees' goody bags that unlocks the BlizzCon 2013 in-game goodies will also unlock the Virtual Ticket, allowing you to view on-demand replays of the events on the Main and Panel stages for up to two weeks after BlizzCon. You'll only be able to apply the code to one Battle.net account, so keep that in mind before you redeem it yourself (or give it to a friend).


There's nothing more frustrating than having to choose between two really cool panels, so it's nice to see that Blizzard is offering this as a bonus for people attending the convention. Now, instead of having to make the difficult choice of which panel to miss, attendees can wrestle with the question of which panel they'd like to see live, and which they'll check out when they return to the comfort of their own home.

Filed under: News items, BlizzCon

Just what is BlizzCon and how can I keep up with it?

If you're new to the game or play casually, you may be wondering just what all the fuss is about BlizzCon. So just what is BlizzCon and what does it mean to you?

We'll start at the beginning: BlizzCon is a convention held by Blizzard where they announce new games, hold panels with developers, let the best players in the world show off their skills in tournaments, offer hands-on demos of just-announced games, host costume and talent contests, and other fun Blizzard-centric activities. The con is held in sunny Anaheim, California on a standard Blizzard "when it's ready" schedule -- typically every couple of years. This year's convention will be on November 8 - 9th and if you want to attend... well, unfortunately tickets are sold out. However, you can still pick up a virtual ticket which will let you watch live streams from the convention floor as well as pick up some in-game goodies -- like the Murkalot pet -- for $40.

But is it worth it -- and do you even care? Well, maybe. Here's a rundown of what you can expect to happen at BlizzCon this year -- and how to keep up with the news from afar.

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Filed under: WoW Rookie, BlizzCon

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