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Bashiok comments on Fire Festival; new Hallow's End surprises

Blizzard has been getting hit with a few complaints since the Midsummer Fire Festival began -- that the holiday was just a stat-bump for the items and was relatively the same event as last year. Even the highlight item, the Frostscythe of Lord Ahune, was part of the controversy. Bashiok took to the forums to discuss the changes that had to happen for the Midsummer Fire Festival to even happen and gave players a clue to confirm the widely held belief that Hallow's End this year will play into the larger story between the Forsaken and the worgen.

The Midsummer Fire Festival remained largely the same due to the amount of work that had to go into rearranging fire locations due to the cataclysm, changing around all of the decorations, and generally spending a lot of time switching over from the old world. Bashiok does cop to the fact that the event is more or less the same as last year's, but reminds us that the Midsummer Fire Festival has already had its major overhaul back a few years ago.

The more interesting news, however, is that Bashiok says we've got some surprises coming our way with respect to Hallow's End, WoW's take on Halloween. We've been long speculating, based on data-mined items and story cues, that Hallow's End will deal with the continuing story of Sylvanas' march into the kingdom of Gilneas and the worgen's fight to take back their homeland. Plus, who doesn't love the classic Halloween monster movie tropes of zombies and werewolves?

Bashiok confirmed that there are changes in store for Hallow's End. To what extent, we do not know. However, I will be looking forward to surprises because, really, I love surprises. I'm a giant sucker for surprises. Bring on the surprises!

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Filed under: Blizzard, Cataclysm

When is a good time to stop raiding?

I've recently been pondering if, and when, I should retire from raiding. Playing with 24 other people to accomplish a common goal is a wonderful thing. The teamwork and exhilaration from downing a boss for the first time is something that's hard to put into words – it's fun, challenging, frustrating, and all around a great time.

But when is it a good time to stop?

Everything eventually gets old and dies. Yes, one day our beloved WoW will no longer exist; even though that might be a couple decades from now (although I have my doubts WoW will ever truly go off-line, but that's another article). What I want to be sure happens is that I leave this activity I love so much on a high note – and not leave when it's become a pain and something that I'll look back disfavorably upon.

Right now my life allows me to raid. I have classes and WoW Insider work during the day, and at night I have time to raid for a few hours and hang out with the girlfriend and other folks as well. That strikes a good balance in life – allowing both things that I want to do by myself (WoW), and things that I want do with others (girlfriend, friends, etc...)

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Raiding

Breakfast Topic: Doom! ... DOOOOOM!

A wizened old man stands here on the street corner with a cardboard sign held over his body, shouting at everyone who will (or will not) listen. He cries out: "The end is nigh! Prepare yourselves, for soon we shall witness with very our own eyes the end of the world!... of Warcraft!"

Well... no. In all honestly that's very likely the last thing that will happen. When WoW is no more it will go out with a whimper, not a bang. Its players will have long since moved on to Universe of Warcraft, or Galaxy of Starcraft, or Unending Megaverse of the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Online, or whatever is the next great games are. The shutting down of WoW servers will probably make some mention on the various gaming blogs before passing on into history at last.

Some people have already been burned out for a long time now, while some people are only now wondering if maybe another expansion just isn't enough, while still others will never be burned out on WoW anymore than they could get bored of good old classics Uno, Chess, or Checkers.

But it stands to reason that eventually the WoW that we play today will be no more, right? So now I put it to all you who have your fingers on the pulse of WoW. How many years has it got left? How many more years will you keep playing? Or is it actually still so young and vibrant that there's really no way to tell how long it's got? Perhaps we bloggers should stop being so negative? Tell us what you think.

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Expansions, Humor

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