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Posts with tag drops

Finding unfinished quests

Alan on LJ is having a problem I've been thinking a lot about lately -- like me, he wants to go back and finish the Loremaster achievement, which asks you to clean up all of the quests in the old continents. But like me, he's wondering just how he'll find all of those old quests -- unfortunately, there's no way to know which quests have and haven't been done, and while of course, there's a "low level quest" tracking option, that still requires you to run around to all of the different quest locations to find them.

A forum thread like this one is a huge help, but still, there's no way in the game to really go back and easily find which ones we've missed. Even with a list like that, you might spend twenty minutes trying for a drop before realizing you've already done that quest. Blizzard promised us a little while back that they'd be changing the "discovery" mechanic (so that we'd be able to see on the map which areas we hadn't discovered for the achivements yet), and an option like that might be helpful for cleaning up old quest -- say that low level quest tracking might work over the entire map, or there might be a magic box in Dalaran that would have whatever quest items we might need.

The good news here is that Blizzard has built a fair amount of leeway into the quest achievements -- you won't need every single one to get the points, so the more obscure drop-based quests can probably go undone without worry. But just like the World Exploration achievements, a little more help finding the quests we might have missed would go a long way.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Quests, NPCs, Achievements

Are disenchanters getting robbed by rolls?

Sardonis sent us a note the other day, with an interesting, if probably controversial, point inside: when we're in instances, Skinners take their skins, Miners take their ores, and Herbalists take their herbs (or of course they rotate around if there's more than one). At the end of the instance, we don't sit down and /roll on all of the herbs or ores that people have picked up. So why do we do it, Sardonis asks, with disenchanting shards?

Good question. My first response was that everyone needs enchants, and everyone can use those mats. But if everyone can get their friendly guild enchanter to enchant something, can't you get your Leatherworker to use skins, or your Blacksmith to use ores? Of course, you could argue that Leatherworkers can get skins from anywhere, but disenchanted blues only show up in instances. If it's an item that required five (or even 25) people to get, everyone should have a chance at it. There are herbs and ores in instances, true, but those can be found elsewhere as well -- they don't need a group to get them. And what about Rogues who unlock chests in instances -- sure, we need them to open the chests, but they need us to get them there.

You can get blues through questing and drops, though, too, so who knows who deserves what. Sardonis is at the point where he won't even say he's a disenchanter -- he'll just do a greed roll like everyone else, and if he gets the item, then he'll DE it. The tradition seems to be that we all roll when we've all helped drop some boss loot, but it's true that we'd never get the shards if it weren't for DE'ers. Maybe they do deserve to take what they make.

Filed under: Enchanting, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Instances, Raiding, Bosses, Enchants

The Azeroth Ethicist: Why (or why not) to take a player

I had a lot of fun reading the comments on two articles we ran concerning a knotty moral issue, and readers wrote a lot of interesting things about how the problem could be considered from both an ingame and nongame perspective.

This article's about a problem that's existed since the game's launch, but seems to have become more common since Wrath's release due to a substantial demographic shift with plate classes (more on this in a bit). Simply put; is it appropriate to turn down a potential member of a group over loot competition? Players generally don't want to face the prospect of losing a roll, especially if they've been endlessly running a dungeon trying to get a particular piece. But while you'll get a lot of sympathy if you've run, say, heroic Nexus 17 times trying to get the War Mace of Unrequited Love, people will generally elect to take a competitor if it's a choice between that and not doing the dungeon at all.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Instances, Classes, Wrath of the Lich King

Gear Wishlist tells you where to go next


I've been looking around for something exactly like this -- while Kaliban's Class Loot is a great resource for figuring out what kind of loot to dress in right before the endgame, and our gearing for Karazhan guides are a great resource for good drops and pieces around that level (including the rep sets you can get for each class and spec), the next biggest question to answer is "what comes after that?" And Gear Wishlist, a site made and sent to us by Darrell Anderson, tries to answer exactly that question.

After putting in your character and realm, you get a list of all the gear you've got equipped, matched up against a list of all the gear available at the item level you're looking at (you can customize exactly where the item levels come from, if there's a site whose estimations of the gear you value more), with yours highlighted. So basically, you get an up and down list of where to go from the gear you've got, and you can easily see where it all comes from and what kinds of stats it gives.

Of course, this is still more of a guideline -- just because gear appears above yours on this list doesn't mean that it's better than yours for your class and spec. And attainability is a big factor as well -- if you're not in a raiding guild, your time might be better spent grinding rep rather than trying to suffer through with PuGs. But as an overview of the gear available to you, Gear Wishlist works great. Hopefully the site will stay up under our linkage, and if it doesn't, check back in a few days to see if it's slowed down.

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Bosses, Leveling, Guides

Buying your way through raid content

There's a new game in town, and Artirius of the Aerie Peak server has noticed it, and admittedly, so have I. With attunements gone, it is now possible for any level 70 to go in and see tier 5 and 6 content whenever they want. Of course, they don't generally have a prayer of actually downing bosses unless they have 20-24 well geared people to help them out.

That's where gold comes in. With a few thousand gold, you can buy your way into a tier 6 group that doesn't need the tier 6 armor and go along for the ride. A few hours later, you come out on the other end with Illidan dead and a few shiny new drops, even if you've never set foot in Karazhan.

It's not just people trying to buy these slots in the trade channel either. As Artirius observes, many raid groups are actively soliciting for buyers for their raid slots. On my own server, one Horde group is trading tier 6 runs for large quantities of certain herbs, promising that all but a few select drops will go to the people who buy their slots with stacks of Netherbloom and Ghost Mushrooms.

So what's causing this?

Read more →

Filed under: Herbalism, Mining, Alchemy, Items, Analysis / Opinion, Cheats, Instances, Raiding, Bosses, Making money

Staying out of Outland

If you listen to me (or anyone else around here, it seems), the major consensus seems to be to head to Outlands right at 58, period. The leveling is faster, the quests are more interesting, and the money is plentiful, as are the drops. But cyanrose over on WoW LJ makes an amazing case for exactly the opposite: staying in old Azeroth from levels 58-60.

She's been rolling around Hearthglen picking up items and XP, and from the way she tells it, things are almost as good there as they are in Outland. A dropped Orb of Deception (which was sold for a whopping 700g) didn't hurt, and there's lots of Rich Thorium around as well. Since old Azeroth is so empty, she hasn't had any problems with PvP, and apparently there's some good AoE grinding to do around there as well.

Great example of going against convention and finding your own way to play through the game. Outlands is there if you want it at 58 -- you can replace your gear in just a few quests, and get started on the new reputation grinds early. But don't let the popular opinion stop you from exploring the old world if you want -- there's lots of loot and fun to be had there, too.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Leveling, Making money

Killing ogres and feeling like a jerk


I wrote about dropping Mining to take up Enchanting, and I'd like everyone to know it's going fine. I'm now at 357, being patient with the last few points to 360, opting to sell enchantments and save what little money I have after blowing quite a bit on all the materials up to 300+. Of course, now I feel somewhat compelled to acquire Enchanting formulas just so I have more options to use as I level up. The tips are a nice bonus.

Anyway, one of the formulas I wanted to go after was the Formula: Enchant Bracer - Spellpower, which drop off the Bloodmaul Geomancers in Blade's Edge Mountains. So off I go to kill these ogres, I figure it'll take maybe an hour of so of farming. Easy, right? Well, what I didn't expect was that these ogres still paid fealty to me after I completed the chain of quests to unlock the quests in Ogri'la. I didn't make much of all the yelling those fatties did when they made me king, but since I didn't bother going around Blade's Edge much after that, I didn't notice that the Bloodmaul had turned yellow, or neutral, towards me. So it took me by surprise that upon killing these ogres, they say mortifying things like, "Me honored, King kill me," or "King <name>, me die now."

Thanks a lot, Blizzard. Now I feel like a total jerk. These ogres consider me (and I'm sure millions of other players... but anyway...) their king and now I'm cutting them down like some maniacal despot. They also reference Ogri'la, which is kind of like paradise to them and a Blizzard reference to the Utopian haven of Shangri-La. It's heart-wrenching when they keel over saying, "King really think... there is... an Ogri'la?" or "Me go to... Ogri'la." It's like having some distant friend with Down Syndrome die in your arms with dreams of shiny, happy places. It's tragic. I know, it's a silly video game, and I'm not even on an RP server. But still, you have to wonder how you can keep killing those who consider you their king. After a while of killing and not getting the formula to drop, I called it a night and took a break. I probably shouldn't feel so bad. After all, if I'm truly their king, why don't they just hand over the stupid formula?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Humor

Hybrid Theory: Itemization, Patch 2.4 and beyond!

My original intent for this week's Hybrid Theory was to take a close look at the Badge Gear for Hybrids in patch 2.4, but that turned into a monstrous project that left my head spinning. I remained vigilant, until I saw the specific class columns were working on this themselves, starting with Shifting Perspectives. Upon hearing that, I jumped for joy and it was as if the Heavens opened up and thousands of beautiful angels embraced me against their supple forms.

So instead of filling your browser with loot links and badge prices, I'm going to talk about the future of itemization, from patch 2.4 and onward.

"We do plan to have more specs share some loot. I know it's great when the Retribution-Paladin piece drops, but that's a piece that isn't good for 26 other classes/specs, so hopefully we can make it so the item will apply to more classes/specs so even the randomness of loot won't be so much of a big deal."

Read more →

Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Shaman, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Hybrid Theory

More realm issues today

Bornakk announced today on the general discussion forums (why he didn't do this on the tech support forums, I don't know...) that they are having a number of realms randomly drop people. Indeed, this happened to me over on Eldre'Thalas this morning.

If you are having issues, remember that you can go to the Blizzard's tech support forums and ask a question there. You can also check out our guide for solving all these connection issues, if Blizzard doesn't come through with a solution for you.

We'll keep you updated on this weekend hiccup – stay tuned to WoW Insider for the latest!

Filed under: Realm News, Realm Status, News items

Leveling improvements for Patch 2.3

Are you in the midst of leveling a character between 20 and 60? Well right now is the time to stop everything, rush over to this forum post from Blizzard, and sing a happy song while you hurry up and wait! That's right, in answer to the crying pleas of casual alt-oholics everywhere, Blizzard is finally speeding up the tedious leveling curve for old world content in patch 2.3, adding in a bunch of new quests, nerfing a lot of the nastiest bad guys, and buffing a whole bunch of the items they drop.

Here's a summarized list of the changes, with the full post by Vaneras copied for you beyond the link below.
  • Amount of experience needed to level reduced by 15% per level between 20 and 60.
  • Experience gained from completing quests increased between levels 30 and 60.
  • Outdoor elite quests will now now be soloable, with the same (or better) rewards.
  • About 60 new quests and a new goblin town based in Dustwallow Marsh (levels 30 to 40)
  • Level ranges for old dungeons to be narrowed down a bit (so that if you are high enough to start them, you are high enough to finish them too)
  • Increased questing experience for dungeon quests.
  • Buffed up item drops from dungeon bosses.
As Vaneras says, "Though we've given you a few examples of the things to come, we think everyone will pleasantly surprised when they see the full extent of the changes discussed above." Keep reading to see all the juicy details.

Read more →

Filed under: Patches, Items, Instances, Quests, Leveling, Alts

The pros and cons of set loot tables

Hardcore Casual has a short but interesting piece up comparing EVE's loot system to that of WoW and EQ. WoW uses what's called a fixed loot table system, which means that everything you kill in game has a set list of loot that drops from it, in varying degrees. If you kill Illidan, you know exactly what he might drop, even if you don't know exactly which piece on that list will drop. But EVE Online apparently uses a much more random loot system-- when you loot, you might get anything.

A better comparison (especially for Blizzard fans) might be Diablo, where almost anything can drop almost anywhere. The problem with a random loot system like this, however, is exactly what I ran into in Titan Quest (a pretty darn good Diablo clone): halfway through the game, a great item will randomly drop, and you'll get a thrill from getting a sweet weapon. However, because you randomly hit it big, you'll have the problem of nothing better ever dropping again, and the game is pretty much over. Diablo fixed this by having separate areas to go through (and I believe TQ got patched in the expansion to fix this a little bit). But in WoW, you don't have that problem-- every new instance you go into will have better gear than the one before it, guaranteed. You can look it up on WoW Wiki, or look at the loot lists, and know exactly what's there.

In fact, some say WoW's loot tables are too random-- I always see Paladin loot drop whenever there's no Paladin in the group. But it does take a little bit of fun out of the game world when everyone is huddled around the Curator saying "cmon staff, cmon staff, cmon staff!" Giving us a boss or two where the loot is totally and completely random (out of almost any item in the game) could actually be fun.

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Instances, Raiding, Bosses

Attunement scrolls now granting free flasks


So first there were quests to get into Serpentshrine Cavern and Tempest Keep. Then Blizzard created "attunement scrolls," which dropped from the bosses of each and allowed guilds to attune other players or alts who'd missed out on the action so far. And then Blizz removed the attunements entirely. So what happened to the quests and the scrolls?

All we know about the quests so far is that Blizzard has promised to add extra steps onto them to reward the people who actually did them (we don't know what the rewards will be quite yet). But Boubouille at MMO Champion has a good line on what's up with the scrolls-- they still drop, but now instead of granting attunements, they grant flasks, usable in all the higher level raid instances.

The good news, as we heard at BlizzCon, is that Blizzard says they've learned their lesson from this fiasco, and attunements in upcoming patches and expansions will be a little less intensive (which is fine by me-- I'd rather difficulty keep people away from a dungeon rather than a super-long attunement questline). But if you've got any of these scrolls still around, feel free to use them for flasks. As a commenter says, it's a buy and use 25 flasks, get 5 free sale!

Filed under: Patches, Items, Blizzard, Raiding, Bosses, Buffs

Loot hoping, and loot whining

Cryptos posts on the forums about a subject very near and dear to my heart: loot whining. It is one of my great flaws that whenever I get close to a boss that I know drops something I really want, I can't help but share my excitement with my fellow party members, and sometimes (more often then not, unfortunately for them) my guild members. I'm sorry to say that I'm the guy he's talking about-- I'm the guy that is about to fight Murmur telling the guild, "man I sure hope my pretty dress drops." And it's a sign of how amazing my guild really is that they put up with me talking about it all the time.

But then again, loot is basically why we play the game in the first place. Shouldn't I, and players like me, be able to share with our fellow players what loot we're going for, to let them in on the stuff we hope we get? Is it right for this GM to actually threaten to disenchant a piece of loot, just because someone says they want it?

I definitely agree it can go over the top-- one of my pet peeves is people who join a PUG and try to "reserve" not-yet-dropped items, especially when there are others in the party who would obviously roll on it. And for my part, I've already noticed that I should keep my loot hopes to myself-- my guild doesn't really care about me getting every little upgrade I want. But good loot is the reason why many of us play this game, and so it's only expected that we should be excited at the prospect of getting it, and want to share that with fellow players.

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Guilds, Instances

Are loot drops really random?

If you've been to a few raids, there's no question that you've heard some interesting theories about loot distribution. The drops are determined by the precise time (to the second!) that the first player zones into the instance. Or perhaps the drops are determined by the class of the group leader. Or maybe by the first letter of the group leader's name. Does the current phase of the moon have something to do with it? Perhaps it's a little of all these things!

Trust me, I've heard every theory that's tried to make sense of what Blizzard constantly assures us are completely random loot drops. However, EU forum-goer Rooted came across a post by Blizzard employee Issuntril which stated:

There are many other variables which effect which items are going to drop. I'm afraid this is information not intended for the community however, and is not something I can comment further on.


Other variables, you say? So... loot isn't random? The conspiracy theorists were right all along?!

Read more →

Filed under: Items, Blizzard

Customizing the classes with rare and epic ability drops

Mike over at the Eye on MOGs blog has an interesting idea about how to customize classes even further than talent trees: implement rare and epic ability drops. As you probably know if you've hit 60 and run the higher level instances, there are already ability drops in the game-- I've seen a few Manuals of Evicerate IX drop in UBRS, and my Shaman has already gotten a few Tablets from AQ20. But all of those abilities are just higher ranks of current abilities (and they'll be trainable when the expansion hits anyway). I think what Mike is talking about is abilities that can seperate players even within the same class-- as an example (don't argue about the gameplay aspects of these, I just came up with them on the spot), Warriors could obtain an item that gave them a learnable root ability. Or Druids could find an epic drop or quest reward somewhere that would grant them a strength or agility debuff of some type.

To be fair, these things do already exist in the game-- Warriors can use Really Sticky Glue as a root, or Pallys can use the Boomerang trinket for a ranged attack. Likewise, as we enter into the expansion, there will be lots of different items that drop with strange procs, or items that (via jewels or enchants) will give classes special abilities in some way. Mike is, of course, talking about items that give us learned class abilities, free of some item, but the truth is that almost anything you want to do can be done with an item you find somewhere in the game, so there's not much call at the moment to implement more learned abilities.

And finally, if Mike's goal is to customize the classes, I'm not sure rare or epic drops will do that much anyway. My Shaman has the Totem of Sustaining (a rare drop in Scholomance), which gives an extra boost to my Lesser Healing Wave, but every resto Shammy I've seen around has one, too. The classes aren't any more customized-- we just all decided that was the best Totem for us to have, and grinded away until we got it. Any rare or epic drop in the game, I'd hazard a guess, would end up playing the same role-- if you were expected to have that ability, you or your guild would just work away at it until you got it. But that isn't to say we shouldn't have items floating around that can better define the classes and their different specs. My guess is that in the expansion (and I'm sure feral druids will agree with me), that's exactly what we'll see.

Filed under: Paladin, Shaman, Warrior, Items, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends

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