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Posts with tag drakkisath

WoW Archivist: Upper Blackrock Spire

Whelps and eggs in the Rookery
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?

You may have taken Upper Blackrock Spire, Warlord Zaela, but the classic version lives in our hearts, where your orc friends can't get to it. In 2005, UBRS was the dungeon everyone desperately aspired to run. They begged to run it. They paid to run it. They sat in capital cities for hours just hoping, dreaming, that someone, somehow, would put together a UBRS group.

The dungeon was the pinnacle of content for classic WoW's "nonraiders" and the gateway to raiding for raiders. Quests here attuned you for Onyxia's Lair and Blackwing Lair. (And who doesn't love a good lair?) Another quest allowed your Molten Core raid to summon Majordomo Executus. No endgame PvE'er could avoid UBRS, even if they wanted to. We didn't avoid it, though, because the original "Ubers" (OO bers), as players affectionately called it, was awesome.

What made it so special? Why was it so revered, and why are some players sad that it has been removed from WoW forever? Let's turn back the Empowered Hourglass to 2005 to find out.

Ascension

UBRS, like many of WoW's classic endgame dungeons, required a key to enter. It was not nearly as simple as grinding out some reputation -- click the link for the full rundown of just how painful getting this key was. Even the quest giver knew trying to get a key would be awful. He told you, "Understand this, mortal: the chance that one of the three generals of the lower citadel would carry a gemstone at any given time is rare. You must be vigilant in your quest. Remain determined!"

In early 2005, when many players were finally hitting the endgame, very few had a Seal of Ascension to grant UBRS access. To put this in perspective, by the end of classic, my guild of more than 200 people only had about five or six keys. If you had a key, you had two choices. You could hide in your guild and only do guild runs. Or you could advertise that you had one to your realm, find yourself on everyone's friend list, and get requests day and night, every time you logged in, to run UBRS. Even if you tried to keep it a secret, someone in your guild may have outed you. Once that cat was out of the bag, your WoW experience changed dramatically. You were now a realm celebrity.

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Filed under: WoW Archivist

15 Minutes of Fame: A guild of achievers


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.

So – achievements. They're a pretty neat concept for casual players as well as ... well, over-achievers. Fans of the upcoming new feature have already begun setting up for various achievements, farming rep, running old-school content and collecting gear and quest completions in preparation for the expansion's launch.

Among the high achievers is <Hells Fury> of Eonar-EU. "Unlike most guilds," writes officer Nerfs in a news tip to 15 Minutes of Fame, "it is not focused on raiding or PvP. We are instead focusing on the achievements that will be released with the pre-expansion patch and the expansion itself." Pretty cool idea for a bunch of folks with mixed-up schedules and piled-on work and school responsibilities! We visited with Nerfs yesterday to see how the guild is pulling it all together – and we have to admit, this sounds like a fun new way to play as a group.

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Filed under: Guilds, Features, Interviews, Wrath of the Lich King, 15 Minutes of Fame, Achievements

The eventual nerfing of Karazhan

When Lua from Doomhammer posts on the forums asking for a little Karazhan trash relief, Bornakk (who's new on the forums-- not sure whether he's a CM or a mod yet) says no-- Blizzard is happy with the pacing of Karazhan. So you're meant to be taking a long time clearing all those little mana guys before and after Curator.

But this idea of making Karazhan faster brings up another point I've been mulling over for a while now. When we first heard about Kara, a "new 10man instance," back when we were all playing vanilla WoW, I got really excited about the fact that we were going to have a new UBRS-- an epic raid that 10 people could finish off in a few hours. Kind of a short but preview of the bigger raids to come. Fighting Rend while Nefarian was yelling at him was some of the best times I'd ever had in WoW, and I looked forward to leading the same kinds of groups through Karazhan.

But Karazhan didn't turn out like that, did it? It's still more complicated, and for many guilds, it's still the main event. There's a timer on it, most groups take at least two days to clean it out, and while the encounters in UBRS weren't necessarily easy if your group wasn't up to it, the encounters in Karazhan are pretty merciless-- Moroes takes coordination that even the Drakk fight never needed.

That's not necessarily a bad thing-- I like Karazhan a lot. But just as UBRS was diluted from its original form (as a harder 15 man instance with more trash than it has now), I wonder if Karazhan will eventually have the same fate. When more and more guilds have moved up the ladder, and we're all farming Zul'Aman and progressing on Mount Hyjal, will Blizzard eventually nerf Kara into the new UBRS, with streamlined trash and no timer?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Guilds, Blizzard, Instances, Raiding

When bosses get bored

The latest news from the front, both Horde and Alliance, is that there's another planet on the other side of the Dark Portal! It's called "Azeroth," and it's supposed to be two continents full of instances and dragons and quests! I don't ever remember visiting the place myself, but it's supposed to be pretty cool.

From that distant realm comes this conversation from the forums, about what all the bosses "back home" are up to.

{Drakkisath} dammit i'm bored. where are all the mobs?
{Ragnaros has come online}
{Nefarian} hey rag.
{Ragnaros} TASTE THE FLAMES OF SULFURON
{MajordomoExecutus} wtf caps
{BaronRivendare} o_O
{Nefarian} you dont have to put on your show, there arent any mobs around
{Ragnaros} where the hell is everyone
{Level 64 human warrior has come online}
{Nefarian} niiiiiice
{Nefarian} Im not even gonna use my skellies
{BaronRivendare} same
{Level 64 human warrior has killed Drakkisath}
{Nefarian} ....
{BaronRivendare} wt...
{Level 64 human warrior has killed BaronRivendare}
{Nefarian} jesus
{MajordomoExecutus} /inspect
{MajordomoExecutus} wtf he's wearing greens!


Funny. Wherever this "Azeroth" place is, I'll have to check it out sometime.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Instances, Expansions, Humor, Raiding, The Burning Crusade, Bosses

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