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Posts with tag capital-cities

Blizzard's vision and player choice

Temple of Karabor assaulted
This past Thursday, Cory Stockton (aka Mumper) answered a simple question on Twitter. He told players that the faction hubs would no longer be located in the Temple of Karabor and Bladespire Fortress, but on the island of Ashran.

The firestorm of controversy that followed seemed to take Blizzard by surprise. Lore took to the forums to explain the change. He gave Blizzard's reasoning, including the lore explanation for the new hubs. Far from mollifying the player base, it only served to inflame those who disagreed with the shift in locale.

My response is this: Why not both? Why must one city or the other be the One Hub to Rule Them All? Why can't we, the players, choose which city to bind our hearthstone to -- without being punished for it? Why does there have to be one "right" answer on such a basic quality of life issue? Let us choose and use phasing so we only see our own choice as a hub.

Although I don't condone the extremely negative way that some reacted to the announcement, the anger didn't surprise me at all. It points to a problem that has loomed over WoW for a long time: lack of player options and personalization.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Warlords of Draenor

Warlords of Draenor: Faction hubs moved to outskirts of Ashran


Cory Stockton, Lead WoW Designer, dropped a big change on Twitter last night. The capital cities in Draenor, which were previously in Karabor and Bladespire, are now being moved to the outskirts of Ashran. Ashran is the new PvP zone that we'll be getting -- the one that Blizzard is putting a lot of effort into in an attempt to fix PvP and make it more attractive to a wider audience.

This move is clearly designed to get people closer to one of the expansion's major draws, yet Stockton goes on to say that PvP will not be forced. I've bolded that because it's really important -- it means that you won't have to PvP just because you're near the zone, and it's not Blizzard's intention to make you PvP to get into your capital city.

An interesting change for sure, and one that is putting PvP, forced or not, front-and-center in this expansion.

Filed under: Warlords of Draenor

What do you want in a city?

What do you want in a city
Nestled on the eastern half of the Vale of Eternal Blossoms, players will find two nearly identical shrines, the Shrine of Two Moons and the Shrine of Seven Stars. In the next expansion, these two locations will serve Horde and Alliance players as miniature capital cities, conveniently located in the heart of Pandaria for easy access to the rest of the continent. Both shrines currently offer most of the usual commodities you'd find in a capital city: Auction House, bank, profession trainers, and arcane reforging. Unfortunately, the shrines also appear to lack other basic essentials, such as class trainers, portals, transmogrification, void storage, and the ability to mount up on a flying or ground mount.

The good news is the shrines still appear to be under significant development. City chat channels (such as trade chat) were only just added yesterday with the latest beta patch, and most of the vendor and trainer NPCs still can't be interacted with. Additionally, you're not currently considered at rest while within the confines of a shrine, meaning you have to sit through that annoying pop-up for 20 seconds before you can log out. It also looks like the mount issue will be handled by an NPC in the shrines who casts Cyclonic Inspiration on you, allowing you to move about the city at high speeds, but the buff doesn't always take and falls off before you can run simple errands between the bank and Auction House.

Since I didn't participate in the Wrath of the Lich King beta, this is the first city I've seen while it was in development, which got me wondering: What would the perfect city be? What would I want a new city in the game to have? Maybe a transmogrification ethereal right next to the bank so it's easier for me to swap outfits? I bet players who deal in lots of buying and trading on the Auction House would want the bank right next door, if not inside the Auction House itself. What kind of features do role players want? How about raiders and PvPers?

What do you want in a city, and why?

It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: Mists of Pandaria

Pandaria to eschew capital cities for scattered vendors, separate faction hubs

In today's Mists of Pandaria Live Developer QA, a player asked whether we'd see a Dalaran-like capital city on the new continent of Pandaria. Cory Stockton's answer reveals a surprising amount about the new Pandaria paradigm of exploration.

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Filed under: News items, Mists of Pandaria

Breakfast Topic: What is your city of choice?

This Breakfast Topic has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to our pages.

Whether you're Alliance or Horde, you have a variety of choices when it comes to your favorite city. Maybe you like Silvermoon because it's quiet and the only people there aside from you are the Alliance who are going after Lor'themar Theron for their black war bears. If you're Alliance, you might prefer Stormwind because there is a mailbox literally right outside the auction house.

As someone who primarily plays Alliance, I prefer Ironforge. I love the dwarves and the lore behind them. The city of Ironforge is housed in a mountain. Whoever had the idea to put a city inside of a mountain deserves a keg of ale. There is only one way in and out of the city, which is good for the defenders, bad for the attackers. It's also impossible to get lost in Ironforge. It's a giant circle with one floor of buildings. Unlike Darnassus, you can easily move between the auction house and the bank.

Of course, Ironforge does have its flaws. While the layout is simple, that is also a major drawback. The architecture of the buildings was awesome in 2004, but in 2010, it's rather bland. Everything looks the same, which can cause some confusion when looking for a certain vendor or trainer.

What goes into choosing your favorite city? Do you prefer Dalaran for the portal room? What does your favorite city lack that others have?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Guest Posts

Breakfast Topic: What you call home

One of the more amusing things that polarizes WoW players is the various capital cities. Everyone has a favorite, very few people are ever neutral. Some of my friends like Ironforge for its simplicity, it's all laid out in a circle. Some like Stormwind for the truly city-like appearance. Some even like Darnassus because they have a thing for purple. Some of my friends wish we played Horde so we could have Orgrimmar, because I guess they need more spikes in their life or something. Me? I'm a Stormwind (and Silvermoon City) kind of guy, but Dalaran has stole my heart. Plenty of people hate Dalaran too, though.

Everyone just wants different things out of their cities. I like cities with tons of flavor, with a very city feel. Stormwind feels like people really live there, despite how small it is. Dalaran most definitely feels like a city of mages, and there's a ton of flavor and neat stuff to look at there. The fact that every single person who gives you directions in Dalaran has a name is crazy neat. The little daily event at 9 PM where you get to help turn on the lights is amazingly cool for how simple it is.

How about all of you, what's your favorite? What do you like about it, or dislike about the others? What would your ideal capital have, if you're not very fond of any of them?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics

New Year's Eve in Azeroth tonight


Yes it's the end of another year, and it's time to celebrate! Just in case you're not out and about partying this evening, Azeroth is enjoying New Year's Eve as well, and the good news is that you can drink all you want with no hangover at all! This evening in the capital cities, there'll be kegs and holiday food to eat, and fireworks will light up the sky every hour (starting around 6pm server time, if this year is the same as years past). Plus, all the guards in Booty Bay are taking their annual night off, so there'll be PvP aplenty down there. And there are two quests in the game, one for each faction.

Enjoy the holiday and stay safe, whether you're in the World of Warcraft or elsewhere tonight. From all of us at WoW Insider to all of you, thanks for making 2008 great, and here's to an even better 2009.

Filed under: Events, WoW Insider Business, Virtual selves, Blizzard, PvP, NPCs

WotLK world event going underway


And thus it begins. Midnight just rang out across the EU's servers, and with it brings the Argent Dawn, appearing in capital cities all over Azeroth warning of the coming of the Lich King. "The plagued tendrils of the Lich King," they say, "lurk close."

We knew it was coming (heavy spoilers on that link!), though we still don't know for sure exactly what form the Lich King's re-arrival into Azeroth will take. Will it be a simple replay of the Scourge Invasion that brought Naxxramas to our shores for the first time? Or will it be something even more sinister, a world event that shakes the very foundations of the World of Warcraft as we know it?

Call us destructive, but we're kind of hoping for the second. Stay tuned for more news of the world event leading up to Wrath of the Lich King as we hear it.

Thanks to everyone who sent this in!



Zombies have entered the World of Warcraft in the Wrath of the Lich King world event! Check out our tips for eating brains, our zombie night gallery, or see Blizzard's official zombie infestation guide. They live! Braaiiiiinnnssss!

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Filed under: Blizzard, News items, Expansions, Lore, NPCs, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King

Why have a bank alt?

So Zach posted one of my favorite recent articles about making sure your bank toon looks stylish while it's taking care of your business, and I was amazed when I read the comments to see that a few people were wondering what the whole point of a bank alt was at all.

I have to admit that I was once like them. Why should I give up one of my precious character spaces for some dude who will just sit around Thunder Bluff or Ironforge and do nothing but store stuff that I should just be using or auctioning anyway? Of course, now that I have a bank alt, I'm pretty happy with the concept. If you're someone who hasn't made one yet, I'll tell you why I think you'd be happy with one too after the break.

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Filed under: Items, Tips, Making money, Alts

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