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Posts with tag death-grip

Lichborne: Death Knight tips for Trial of the Crusader, Part I

Welcome to Lichborne, your weekly foray into the news, strategy, and zen of being a Death Knight, with your host, Daniel Whitcomb.

So. You've conquered Ulduar and Naxxramas. Or maybe you've just collected a lot of badges and got some nice shiny gear. Either way, you're ready to go humor that old codger Fordring and fight and die in his silly little Arena. Even if the whole thing is obviously a waste of good time that could be spent killing the Scourge, the Ebon Blade's agreed to cooperate, so you'd better be ready too, death knight. So today, we'll give you a few tips about surviving the first few bosses of the Trial of the Crusader the death knight way.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Tricks, Instances, Raiding, Bosses, Guides, Death Knight, (Death Knight) Lichborne

The lost art of crowd control

The emblems changes are driving traffic back to the Heroics, and I love it -- 5-mans are my favorite thing to do in the game, and there's nothing more fun to me than sitting down with a group and trouncing a Heroic, reeling in all of the gold and loot we can carry. But there's something missing, still, even in these glory days of achievements and Stone Keeper's Shards and Emblems of Conquest. Yes, it's crowd control. Groups are still gung-ho on AoEing everything in their way, and Blizzard hasn't shown any indication, even in the design of the new instances, that crowd control is anything they want to keep around. I can't remember the last time I trapped something in a group on my Hunter, and I'm sure that the last time I did, some Death Knight broke it right open, Death Grip-ped it back into the group, and then AoE'd it down to nothing.

Bornakk actually replies in the thread that we're just being nostalgic for nostalgia's sake, and that even when CC was required, people whined that they needed to have certain classes in their groups. But what class doesn't have CC these days? Even Shamans got their CC, just as it wasn't actually needed any more. Crowd control added some semi-serious strategy even to trash fights in instances, and while we originally heard that it would come back at some point, Blizzard certainly seems to be done with it.

But we can be patient. The new instances in 3.2 are light to completely empty on trash, so maybe they're waiting for Icecrown to really put our CC skills and coordination to the test. I play a Hunter at endgame currently, so I might be biased, but I do love 5-mans, and I do miss the extra coordination and teamwork that a big CC-required pull provided. Hopefully they can find a way to mix that back in without requiring certain specs or classes to be along for the ride.

Filed under: Hunter, Mage, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Instances, Raiding

Breakfast Topic: How would you be honored ingame?


Being honored ingame with an NPC or an item is, I think we can all agree, the height of player cool. Not that this will ever happen to me, mind you. Realistically, the only thing I expect to get from Blizzard is a letter bomb, or possibly a bloodstained horse head for going live with that article on the Death Grip bug, and perhaps I deserve it. To this day I feel kind of bad, or at least I do until I remember my guild leader's Death Knight sending a goblin NPC flying off the dock, and then I laugh and laugh, and realize that I am a terrible person who should probably be locked up somewhere.

It's fun to wonder, though, and I've settled on two wishes. The first would be making my beloved main into a Thunder Bluff NPC among the Druid trainers, kitted in full Tier 6 with an Origin of Nightmares. She would be friend and counselor to all young Druids and full of unsolicited advice for them, most of it incorrect. The second, less dignified, and perhaps more realistic legacy I would leave to the game is a series of cow-shaped impact craters at the bottom of various Northrend cliffs and in Crystalsong under the Dalaran sewers' exit pipe, in tribute to the several falling deaths incurred while mindlessly jumping from heights without the benefit of Cold Weather Flying. Little signs could be posted below informing players of the sites' historical significance, although I'm not sure how Blizzard could squeeze the phrase "Oh shiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii.........." onto the flavor text.

On the chance that Blizzard ever decides to honor your august self ingame, what would you want honored and how?

Filed under: Blizzard, Breakfast Topics, Humor

Death Grip wormhole is a bad, bad thing


As much as we enjoyed watching what is arguably the most phenomenally fun bug ever, it should come as no surprise to anyone that exploiting it is a very bad thing. In particular, GMs have been alerted to the bug and are on a keen watch for players who attempt to do it. After Elizabeth Harper's experimentation -- all done in the name of journalistic investigation, we promise -- resident killer Rogue Chase Christian attempted it, too. He was very swiftly messaged by a Game Master informing him that he would be banned if he ever did it again.

The boys over at DeathKnight.info confirm the same thing, not only because it is under close watch by GMs, but because it has serious repercussions for players who are 'pulled' into the wormhole. Players with the temerity to try it out have reported getting stuck in limbo and had to submit tickets to get their characters unstuck. No doubt a deluge of tickets describing suspiciously similar circumstances was more than enough to raise alarms over at Blizzard. So while we enjoyed showing that video of the Death Grip bug, we hope you didn't follow such bad examples. I mean, you didn't, right? Of course not. Good boys and girls.

Filed under: Bugs, Humor, Death Knight

Breakfast Topic: Bugging out

There are bad bugs, and there are good bugs. Bugs like Wintergrasp crashing the continent every time someone wins? That's bad. Bugs like Death Grip giving players a psychedelic free trip around the world? That's good. Well, as good as bugs go, anyway. I know, Blizzard's developers would probably freak out at the mention of 'bugs' and 'good' in the same sentence, but there are just some fun ones that have popped up over the years.

At WoW Insider, we try to make it a point not to report on exploitable bugs that can break the game or give players an unfair advantage over other players. But I have to confess that there are just some bugs that are too fun to ignore. There was once this bug in Shattrath involving potions and vanity pets that probably put an unnecessary strain on the server -- but I thought it was cool that there was at least one way to have all your pets out at once.

In your time playing the game, what kind of bugs have you encountered or seen that struck you as more fun than flawed? Small orc shoulders were certainly not fun for all the orc players, but I can just imagine Alliance having a good laugh at their expense. Oh, and for the sake of not getting ourselves banned and all that, let's talk about bugs that are no longer in the game. Except, well, for the best bug ever. Don't do it! But man... it's just too darn cool.

Filed under: Bugs, Breakfast Topics

Best. Bug. Ever.



We received the above video from tipster Jimmynorden (better quality video on Vimeo here) about an absolutely amazing bug with the Death Knight ability Death Grip. If you initiate a duel with a Death Knight who's aboard the ship in Booty Bay while you're standing on the dock, Death Grip will pull you -- not to the ship itself, but all the way across and through the world. Elizabeth Harper has just tried this on live servers ("You get PvP flagged from flying through the arena in Stranglethorn!") and her character finally landed on a random ship in what the map insists is the Alterac Mountains, southeast of where Dalaran used to be.

Death Grip is described as harnessing the unholy energy that surrounds and binds all matter. They certainly got that part right. I don't have a Death Knight online in my guild right now and I'm really curious to see if this just works in Booty Bay, or if it works wherever there's a ship or zeppelin docked. I'm assuming it's the latter; from my admittedly limited understanding of the game's plumbing, once you're on a ship you're not actually where the map "thinks" you are but rather in some nebulous area without real coordinates before the ship transfers you between servers.

UPDATE: A few guildies and I tried this; you'll find additional results and notes behind the cut.

Elizabeth had time to take a few screenshots, which you'll see below:

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Bugs, Humor, Death Knight

The Queue: Punching our way to greatness


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.

Yesterday we were talking about the Bros Before Ho Ho Ho's achievement a bit. Specifically, do you need to be level 77 to get it if you're a Horde player? Most of us thought yes, you do, but stacy (one of our readers) popped in with some pretty creative instructions on how to do it. Check that out, then we'll get on with the Q&A!

Classy asked...

Anyone know a good place to fall to get the "Going Down?" achievement?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Wrath of the Lich King, Achievements, The Queue

Death Knight's Death Grip as crowd control


I haven't played a Death Knight on the live realms yet (I leveled one through the starting experience during the beta, and am only 79 so far on my main), but I have grouped with quite a few of them now, and the ability that real stands out to me and others seems to be Death Grip. A lot of the other Death Knight abilities are just new versions of other classes' spells, but Death Grip is a pretty new mechanic -- instead of charging or jumping away from a mob, you're bringing the mob to you. And with all new mechanics, players have found new ways to play with them. As you can see in the video above, Death Grip, when chained by a few Death Knights, can even be used as crowd control.

I've seen it used in a few other wild ways, too -- it works great as an interrupt, and when combined with a Hunter trap, it's finally a reliable way to trap ranged attackers and casters. And most of the Death Knights I've seen use it for pulling -- they suck the caster in from a group, and the rest of the mobs come with, and group right up for AoE. And I haven't even been to any PvP matches with Death Knights yet -- I imagine the uses there are even more hilarious, not to mention that I'd be yelling "Get over here!" every time I hit it. Very fun mechanic for the new Hero class.

Thanks, Michael!

Filed under: Fan stuff, PvP, Humor, Raiding, Classes, Buffs, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King

Breakfast Topic: Game-changing skills


So I was thinking about grabbing some PvP achievements on my Death Knight the other day, when a rather glorious thought popped into my head: If some Hordie tried to exploit terrain in Warsong Gulch, my Death Grip and I were going to have a lot of fun drawing their cheating self into the midst of a knot of angry Alliance.

Of course, there's always the problem of LOS, but still, I can't help but think that Death Grip may be so effective that it ends some of the frustration of WSG in which flag-bearers find ways to jump over holes in the terrain such that it's near impossible to get to them. It'll be nice if it does happen that way, and I don't say that just because I am a Death Knight. New skills that help solve old problems are always nice.

There's other new skills for various classes that may have similar effects in PVE or PVP, such as Tricks of the Trade for Rogues or Aspect of the Dragonhawk for Hunters. Are you projecting that any of the new Wrath skills or talents will be game changers for the way we play and compete? Have you seen them changing things already?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Breakfast Topics, Leveling, Classes, Buffs, Enchants, Battlegrounds

Lichborne: Death Knight Tanking


Welcome to the first post-Wrath installment of Lichborne, the weekly Death Knight column. Join Daniel Whitcomb on the bleeding edge of a new and untried class.

So Wrath is upon us, and we can finally start leveling our Death Knights on the live servers. That's right, this time it's for keeps. I'm pretty excited about that. One thing, though, that I haven't gotten to do yet on live servers is tank a dungeon. It's not that I don't want to, it's that 98% of the people leveling through Outland right now are Death Knights, so finding a healer is a bit difficult. Still, I did my fair share of tanking on Beta servers, and I played a Druid tank for years, and I'm figuring I'll do my fair share of tanking again at 80. Thus, I decided that this week is the perfect time to start getting ready to tank, even if Utgarde may be the first instance most Death Knights will get a group for.

Let's get down to the basics:

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Filed under: Tips, Raiding, Bosses, Guides, Talents, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Tips for new Death Knights from a fellow tank, part 2


Dear corpsified bundles of beautifully-armored joy (but more particularly those who tank Azjol Nerub while wearing Expedition Bracers of the Bandit),

We had a little bit of controversy in the first installment, so I'm just going to state this as baldly as possible; if you hated what I wrote last time, there's a good chance you'll walk away from this one thinking I eat babies. Delicious, delicious babies. While I never mean to offend people, I reserve the right to tell them the truth, or at the very least a highly entertaining and plausible lie.

Truth, she be at times an ugly mistress. And she ain't gettin' any prettier as we move from DPS to tanking.

Tanks have significantly more responsibility, both in groups and raids, and they face the competing directives of maximizing mitigation (to keep their healers happy) and maximizing threat production (to keep their DPS happy). I've healed dozens of Death Knight tanks at this point, and while the average pugged DK tank has gotten noticeably better, there are still a few trends you'd want to be aware of as a healer. The problems in beta right now are made worse by Blizzard unintentionally overselling the ease of tanking on a Death Knight in 5-man runs. Many people seem to have interpreted the statement that they should be able to tank well with Blood, Frost, or Unholy specs as being tantamount to saying they can tank well regardless of how their talent points are spent in those trees.

Any experienced tank can tell you right now that this is not true, but people believing that it is is how you wind up with 11K-life Death Knights taking 7-8K enraged hits from Keristasza in the Nexus. If you've never tanked before but you're interested in tanking on a Death Knight -- or pragmatic enough to know you'll probably wind up tanking a certain number of 5-mans on your DPS Death Knight -- I hope this article helps you avoid what I went through in May 2007 when I started tanking and sucked at it.

I came to the beta to slowly lose my mind trying to heal insane tank damage and gulp Extra Strength Tylenol. And I'm all out of Extra Strength Tylenol.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Tips, How-tos, Instances, Expansions, Features, Humor, Raiding, Guides, Classes, Talents, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King

Tips for new Death Knights from a fellow melee, part 1


Dear reanimated angst-puppy hero corpses,

Love what you've done with the smell, really. The little air freshener attached to the runeblade is a nice touch. Now that I'm in the beta, I've had the opportunity group with -- conservatively -- billions of you. I've healed a lot of Death Knight tanks, and tanked for a lot of Death Knight DPS. Most of you seem like cool people, so I say this with sincere love in my little Druid heart and a touch of worry over what will happen in November:

Most of you are awful.

I don't wish to be needlessly cruel here, mind you, or to overlook that the class is still new. Blizzard endlessly tinkers with you, so it's not like your rotations haven't changed, or your talents and skills are stable. And I know you're not coming to Northrend with a bank full of awesome gear from Burning Crusade. This isn't about your wearing greens or using the wrong attack or tanking rotation; I'm not even going to bother with the theorycraft surrounding the ideal DPS rotation until Wrath actually ships. But I'm seeing an awful lot of you running around playing as if...almost as if...you haven't played a tank or a melee class before. It's uncanny. But when I switched from playing a balance to a feral druid more than a year ago and knew nothing about playing a melee DPS/tank, I made all the mistakes you're making right now. Help me help you!

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Tips, How-tos, Instances, Expansions, Features, Guides, Classes, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King

Lichborne: Of Cabbages and Kings

The time has come, the walrus said, to talk of other things...
Welcome to Lichborne, where each weekend, Daniel Whitcomb helps you keep pace with the ever-changing Death Knight class.

This week, While Death Knight tweaks continue, there's no big piece of news that really stands out. We got a nice bump in damage to our base weapon strikes, Death Coil, and the abilities that mimic them in the talent trees in the latest build. Unfortunately, poor Plague Strike still sits at a sort of dismal 30% weapon damage, meaning it still doesn't feel like it scales as well as it should. But preliminary reports are still that it's a noticeable DPS increase.

At the same time, our PvP utility and survivability was nerfed, but not in completely unexpected ways. Chains of Ice is dispellable again, as the devs felt that between it and Death Grip, it was far too hard to get away from a Death Knight. Again, this nerf is somewhat expected, if not needed, although some argue the nerf is unfair in the face of other classes that have similar abilities to ensnare and entrap opponents. I have to admit that I'm hoping we see, at the least, Chains of Ice getting put on Virulence. If nothing else, that Glyph of Blood Boil is looking a lot nicer.

Still, none of the news really jumps out and grabs me, and with the beta patches coming fast and furious, it's hard to write with any authority on something that may be changed next week. With that in mind, I've decided this week to post on a potpourri of odds and ends from around the World of Warcraft as they relate to Death Knights, both stuff that refers back to previous columns and new observations. Read on:

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Lichborne: Death Knight glyphs

Welcome to Lichborne, your weekly weekend look at the first hero class, the Death Knight. Daniel Whitcomb is back after dealing with some light administrative work back at the Ebon Hold.

Inscription seems to be coming on to the beta server in bits and pieces, especially when it comes to the much looked for glyphs. One or two classes seem to trickle in each build, and in the latest build, it is the Death Knight's turn. Today, we'll take a quick look at the new Death Knight glyphs, and figure out how useful they'll be to the various playstyles and specs of the Death Knight. As always, it's worth noting that these are beta numbers, so things could change by the time Inscription and Death Knights see the light of day on live servers.

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Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, News items, Expansions, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King, Inscription, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Ask a Beta Tester: PvP questions and random things


Let's get right into the meat of things. Meethan asked...

Does Bone Shield stack with Earth Shield? If so can I see a screenshot?
Yes and yes.

There's been an idea going around about using a large group of Death Knights to continuously use "Death Grip" to lock players and keep them from running. Does this work?
I'm not able to convince enough Death Knights to try out this silly little trick, but it could work in theory. Death Grip is currently of the Physical school and does not suffer diminishing returns. It's like having several Warriors alternating Hamstring for a permanent snare, except more evil.

What's with the presences and auras? Do they count separately? Stack? Passive?
As of the current build, presences and auras are no longer connected (e.g., you no longer have to have Blood Presence up to have Blood Aura) and thus count separately. However, neither presences nor auras currently display as buffs (unlike Paladin or Hunter auras) which can be a little confusing, although Blood Aura has the Death Knight emanate an inappropriate green gassy mist [EDIT: Discograndpa correctly points out that this is a bug from the Bloodworms talent, and not Blood Aura. Thanks for the correction!]. Presences and auras stack and are passive effects.

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Filed under: Wrath of the Lich King

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