A new build of the Cataclysm beta just dropped, and with the update came a makeover for the loading screens for all four continents. They now feature the faction leaders for Eastern Kingdoms and Kalimdor, Maiev and Akama for Outland, and the most recent Lich King in Northrend.
The lowbie event honored all of the flames from Falconwing Square to Hammerfall, with a couple of desecrations on the side. The mounted event took to the flightpaths and completed the Flame Keeper of Eastern Kingdoms achievement. I also got the unofficial achievement for running into every fence along the way. Running + typing = hard.
A pictorial journal of our fun is in the gallery below. And I used the wow.com addon to upload my activity for the event. I wish I had used the in-game blog feature to annotate it, but I will next time. If you use the addon to upload your It came from the Blog activity, it will show up in the guild log as well.
One of players' most frequently asked questions since BC emerged has been when -- or if -- Blizzard plans to make flying mounts usable in classic Azeroth. It's an attractive proposition due to the sheer size of Kalimdor and the Eastern Kingdoms, and how convenient it would be to take a fast flyer to places that aren't well-served by flight paths. CM's and developers have said that the programming and time required to "retrofit" the old world to be usable by flying mounts isn't worth it, and that they'd rather spend developmental resources on new content.
A player who got irritated with all the begging -- and someone who I can only assume has access to GM powers on a private server -- decided to take an aerial tour of several zones in Azeroth in December 2007 to document the territory Blizzard would have to redesign in order to make flying mounts feasible. It's a really interesting look at how Blizzard exploited perspective and line-of-sight in order to make buildings and zones appear bigger and more built-up than they actually are, and there are a few places in the video that I haven't seen even on websites dedicated to the "secret places" of Azeroth. I'm not sure why this video hasn't popped up previously but it doesn't seem to be tagged or categorized in any way, so that might be why. Check it out; flying in Azeroth would be great to see these things, but there's no denying Blizz would have a lot of work to do.
Welcome to Ask a Lore Nerd, where each week blogger and columnist Alex Ziebart answers your questions about the lore and history of the World of Warcraft. Ask your questions in the comments section below, and we'll try to answer it in a future edition.
Today's edition of Ask a Lore Nerd is a bit heavy on the speculation side, so be warned before you start reading. We've had a lot of questions recently that we don't yet have answers to, but are asked frequently enough that I suppose I should see what I can say!
"Okay, so speaking of life and death, this has bugged me for a while -- how do we explain the fact that some characters (Horde and Alliance legends for example) have died, but yet every Priest, Pally, Shammy and Druid can rez people anytime they want?
I realize it's a game and it wouldn't be so much fun if you died and then had to reroll a level 1, but there needs to be some type of lore explanation as to why people can be rezzed, but also can 'really die.' Are we supposed to just not worry about this or is there an explanation?"
I decided to do something a little different with the image above for today's Ask a Beta Tester. Instead of beating you over the head with another of my awesome Dalaran screenshots, I've plugged in some music you can listen to while you read, if you'd like. Just hit play, and get in a Wrath kind of mood.
Milkgas asked quite a few question, but many of them involve story spoilers that I don't think readers would appreciate seeing in this particular column. What I don't answer, you can truck over to Ask a Lore Nerd and I'll squeeze them in on the bottom behind my usual "spoilers be here, yarrrr" line. We can definitely hit a few of them though.
Has there been any hints in the quest text of either the Uldum or the Karazhan Basement as a raid or dungeon in this expansion or the next?
Nothing that I've seen! We'll have Ulduar as a raid zone in Northrend, so to me that seems like a definite no on Uldum. I don't think they would put two Titan raids in one expansion, unless Uldum turned out to be a 5 man dungeon. We've seen nothing about the rest of Karazhan.
Welcome to Know Your Lore, where each week Elizabeth Wachowski and Alex Ziebart bring you a tasty little morsel of lore to wrap your mind around. Sweet, sweet lore. Mmmm. Oh yeah, and it's late this week. Blame it on the severe dehydration. Or Alex, you can blame him too, if you want.
Continuing the Wrath preparation train, this week's Know Your Lore will take a look at one of the three Bronzebeard brothers. Not the King one or the dead one, but the eccentric, probably-should-be-dead one. The one and only Brann Bronzebeard, explorer extraordinaire.
Brann Bronzebeard is the very definition of a Jack of all Trades. He's an explorer, a linguist, a warrior, an archaeologist, et cetera, et cetera. He is the premier member of the Explorer's League, and while the guild was founded under an edict by Magni, Brann was one of its founding members.