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Posts with tag chess

Breakfast Topic: What game mechanic will WoW borrow next?

One of the most fascinating things about World of Warcraft is its wide variety of minigames and nods to classic games incorporated into the traditional narrative. The original game had an entire quest line dedicated to The Legend of Zelda. The Burning Crusade gave us chess and a flight simulator. Wrath of the Lich King added mounted combat in a big way, from drake fighting in the Oculus (boo), to storming the gates of Ulduar in steam tanks (yay), and finally medieval-style jousting (double boo). Cataclysm, of course, brought the absolutely sublime Plants vs. Zombies homage, and Mists of Pandaria will bring us the don't-call-them-Pokemon Pet Battles and FarmVille.

So, dear readers, come 2014 (or so) and the next WoW expansion, what new minigame will we all be discussing? I'm leaning toward a miniature fictional world, where we hop from place to place persuading the inhabitants to unite against a greater force. That could be cool -- or maybe not, as it likely wouldn't end well. What would you like to see?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

Shifting Perspectives: Revenge of the Karapalooza

Every week, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting druids and those who group with them. This week, we invade the menagerie, shut down the demon factory, defang the beaten dog, carefully avoid Netherspite, play some chess, and face not only Malchezaar but the legions he commands.

Greetings, druids. This week we'll finish our look at stomping Kara from Curator through Prince. If you're looking for our first installment (covering Attumen through Nightbane), you'll find that here.


For most people, the Curator was the source of the first tier piece they ever got in Burning Crusade as he drops the tier 4 glove token. Note that the Defender tokens in tier 4 and 5 went to warriors, druids, and priests, which forced BC's more popular tanking and healing classes (in addition to the new legion of shadow priests that every raid wanted) to gear at each others' expense. It wasn't until tier 6 that Blizzard went for more sensible class combinations, splitting most tanking/healing classes to different tokens.

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

15 Minutes of Fame: 10-boxing Karazhan, Part 2

15 Minutes of Fame is our look at World of Warcraft players of all shapes and sizes – from the renowned to the relatively anonymous, the remarkable to the player next door. Tip us off to players you'd like to hear more about.

Last week, 15 Minutes of Fame visited with multiboxer Nixi of team Absolute Power-H of Archimonde to bring WoW Insider readers his 10-boxing strategy for Karazhan. This week, we'll step back for a look at Nixi's hardware setup, his top five tips for new multiboxers and a broader look at why he's a 'boxer.

Catch up with 10-boxing Karazhan Part 1, then join us after the break for an inside look at Nixi's 10-boxing team.

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Filed under: Tricks, Cheats, Instances, Features, Raiding, Bosses, Interviews, Alts, 15 Minutes of Fame

"It wasn't me": Account sharing and excuses

Wipes suck, regardless of who caused themTechnically, account sharing is a bannable offense, no ifs, ands, or buts. If your brother, best friend, coworker, or Fred from the soccer league who sometimes drops by your house after practice for a couple cold ones want to play some WoW, they have to get their own account. If they play on your account, and Blizzard finds out, they can shut you down for it.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Alts

Breakfast Topic: What if WoW were more interactively social and lifelike?

Yesterday we talked about all those things we that strike us as unrealistic or odd in World of Warcraft. Your discussion of these different things got me thinking: what if Blizzard decided to make the game more interactively social? After all, players have often said that they want guild and player housing -- why stop there? Why have a house if you couldn't have more interactivity with your friends' characters, such as cooking various meals together, talking, hugging, playing music, or even playing a Warcraft version of chess or something -- all with new animations that looked right? Honestly, the way things look in WoW now, social interaction mostly involves standing there, repeating the same "talk" animation over and over as you chat. Imagine if there were a great deal more variety in what your characters could do together, just like -- and bear with me on this -- certain elements of The Sims.

Some of you hate The Sims with a passion, and I respect that. And to be clear, I'm not really talking about making WoW into a "people simulator" like The Sims is. You and I both would play The Sims if we wanted to simulate people -- we play WoW for adventure! No, I'm talking about adding some optional elements to WoW, similar to roleplaying, which would add a sense of life and actual living to the game and don't get the way of your killing things at the same time, so that it doesn't feel like killing computer-generated mobs is all there is.

If you do support adding more non-combative, socializing elements to the game, what sort of elements do you think would work? Mini-games such as WoW Chess, perhaps? Additional interactive animations, such as hugging, handshaking or even kissing? Perhaps even the ability to pick up objects and move them to a different location, such as moving chairs about or kicking a ball around? Would you even go to the extreme of including things like toilets, basic hunger and thirst needs, or other elements that we have in real life? Where would you draw the line where the similarity to real life should stop?

Filed under: Virtual selves, Breakfast Topics, RP

Blizzard puts Hall of Fame in the Armory

Well it's not quite a row of statues, but, as Elizabeth mentioned the other day, Blizzard has created an Arena Hall of Fame over at the Armory. They've compiled, from season one, a list of all the teams that finished in the top .5% of their team bracket, and they're all browseable by battlegroup or realm.

Unfortunately, they don't show many overall stats-- I'd like to see, for example, the numbers of teams from each battlegroup or realm (checking my own realm shows me that no teams made it, but you'd have to check every single realm to see numbers across the board). Do you think PvP realms turn out more successful Arena teams? I'd also like to see the average rating of the teams that made it-- just a random browse across realms shows that you'd have needed at least a 2200 rating in 5v5 to get in. The highest teams hit around 2500, it looks like, and here's an interesting point: The arena rating is based off of chess' ELO system, and in that system Gary Kasparov, the best player in the world, was the first to break the 2700 rating. So my guess is that we'll see generally higher ratings than these in season two, and so on.

Anyway, a nice little tribute to players who were successful in season one. Hopefully, we'll see better insights coming out of these numbers than Blizzard has provided here, but in the meantime if you want to see who on your realm is a heavy hitter, the HoF is the place.

Filed under: Guilds, Odds and ends, Blizzard, PvP

How to calculate Arena Ratings and Points

If you've been playing arena PvP every week and wondering just how your rating translates into points, wonder no more. Our friend Boubouille has created a nifty and easy little Arena Rating calculator-- just punch in your ratings (or your points, if you want to know what rating you'll need to get a certain number of points, and hit calculate and you're set.

The mathematical relationship is a little complicated (hence the reason for the calculator), but the rules of earning Arena Points aren't real hard to figure out-- every week, you earn points according to the highest team rating you've got. And a higher rating on 5v5 is worth more than 2v2, because 5v5 teams are harder to both fight and keep up with. This leads to a little bit of system gaming (and a lot of team jumping), but so far Blizzard has been fine with all of that-- they want 5v5 to become the most rewarding type of arena match, and they're willing to accept that you can often earn more playing 5v5 than 2v2, even if you lose.

Unfortunately, the actual Arena Rating system is a little more complicated-- it's based off of a chess rating system called ELO (named after the guy who made it, Arpad Elo), and the rating of your opponent actually determines how your rating changes as you play. Unfortunately, with no way to tell who your opponent is before you play a match, it's extremely hard to figure out your rating depending on how many matches you play (players are generally saying that the fewer matches you play, the better, as the higher your rating gets, the more difficult opponents you face). But of course the best way to come out with both a great rating and lots of points is to, y'know, actually be good.

Filed under: Tips, Tricks, PvP

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