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Posts with tag exodar

Know Your Lore: The long game of the naaru, part 2

Know Your Lore The Long Game of the Naaru, Part 2
The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how -- but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.

These posts about the naaru are mainly speculative. I hesitate to use the Tinfoil Hat title, because I'm not postulating that they're secretly evil or anything. But the fact remains, we know very little about the naaru. We don't know where they come from, how long they live, if they can enter their Light/Darkness cycle indefinitely, if they ever die naturally or even if they can be really killed. The only one we've ever defeated in combat ended up part of the Sunwell, and who's to say what he's doing in there now? Is M'uru still alive in the Sunwell, or did his mind die with Entropius? We currently have no way of knowing.

We know that despite what we experienced in The Burning Crusade, for the naaru, entering the void phase of their existence is an exceedingly rare and perilous event, at least according to the Ask CDev threads. It is this unknown quality that fascinates me about the naaru.

As we discussed last week, the Ata'mal Crystal that Velen used to create the barrier of Light and hold off Archimonde and Kil'jaeden's followers was an ancient mystery of his people. We don't really know where it comes from or if the naaru gave it to the ancient eredar or if the eredar constructed it somehow. What we do know is that at some point in the distant past before Sargeras came to Argus, the eredar and the naaru had some form of contact. This implies that the naaru may well predate the Titans. What we do know is this: Somehow, in some way, the eredar and the naaru met, and the Ata'mal Crystal was left in eredar hands until Velen came to call upon it for guidance.

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Filed under: The Burning Crusade, Lore, Know your Lore

Know Your Lore: The Exodar and the fate of the draenei

Know Your Lore The Exodar
The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how -- but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.

It spans the universe.

No city in Azeroth can do what the Exodar can. Repaired at last, the Exodar is no mere fortress but rather a satellite of the great Tempest Keep brought to Outland by the naaru. As a result, the Exodar possesses the power to bridge the gulf between worlds, traveling through the Twisting Nether. And after years spent crashed into Azuremyst Isle, the Exodar is fully operational.

But in her turn, the Exodar is more than a vessel. The means of escape for Velen and the draenei who survived the assault of the blood-maddened orc butchery that reduced them to hiding in Zangarmarsh, the Exodar carried them forth after it had been liberated from the blood elves who had invaded Tempest Keep proper. Sabotaged by those same blood elves, servants of Kael'thas Sunstrider, the Exodar's crash landing was yet another travail for the draenei to overcome. But on Azeroth, they found a refuge from the Burning Legion and the will to move forward as members of the Alliance.

It was to the Exodar that Prince Anduin Wrynn of Stormwind came to study the way of the Light under Velen, and in so doing, in time introduce the draenei way of viewing the Light to the Eastern Kingdoms. It was at the Exodar that Velen pledged that the draenei would not leave Azeroth to fend for itself but would stay and defend their new home.

The Exodar spans the universe, right from where it sits today.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Burning Crusade, Lore, Know your Lore

The OverAchiever: In which Alliance has it much worse than Horde

The OverAchiever Sorry, Alliance
Every Thursday, The Overachiever shows you how to work toward those sweet achievement points. This week, we are grateful to play Horde.

This past week, I was tabbed out of the game writing an OverAchiever on Bloody Rare as a follow-up to our guide on Northern Exposure when something interesting started happening in the background. In the sliver of laptop screen dedicated to WoW, the chat channels exploded with warnings that the Alliance was attacking Orgrimmar. Given that the Midsummer Fire Festival is still going on with lots of players busy stealing enemy fires, this isn't particularly unusual. I shrugged and went back to work.

And yet, the warnings just kept coming. Curious, I tabbed back into the game to discover that a full 40-man Alliance raid was fighting its way to Garrosh Hellscream. Other players said that none of the other Horde leaders had been attacked, so I can only assume the raid was starting For the Alliance! with the toughest foe among them.

Now, Garrosh is by no stretch of the imagination anywhere near as popular as Thrall was, but lots of Horde players are still willing to defend him from attack because, well, he's got his moments. Orgrimmar's central district quickly became a lagfest of epic proportions as dozens of players who'd been gossiping in trade or loitering around the Auction House rushed to defend Garrosh. The Alliance raid was ultimately defeated, but they rallied and tried again -- unsuccessfully -- an hour later.

This was the first of three days that I saw the same Alliance raid desperately trying to kill Garrosh, and something started to niggle at me by day two. Namely, For the Alliance! and For the Horde! are among the very few achievements that are significantly tougher if you play one faction over the other.

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Filed under: Achievements, The Overachiever

Know Your Lore: Velen, the Prophet

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The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how -- but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.

"I failed long ago to turn my brothers from their course. And creation has paid the price."

How must it feel to be ageless? To watch as millennia tick by, each century the span of a breath and gone in an instant? To the draenei, the lives of humans must seem incredibly short-lived. To the Prophet Velen, who is at least 25,000 years old, we must seem like motes of dust, winking in and out of existence so quickly that we can scarcely be recognized as entities before we cease to exist. Velen has led the draenei through terror and triumph, from world to world, always gently spreading the benevolent message of the Light to any who wish to hear.

Yet for a being of such grace, purity and peace, Velen is also a creature of unfathomable sorrow. For Velen has been granted the gift of Sight, and with the gift he can see the infinite paths of futures that may not be, of worlds born and fallen in the blink of an eye. And despite that gift, Velen cannot prevent what is yet to pass. He cannot prevent that which has gone before, and will come again. And he could not prevent the path his friends chose, nor could he persuade them their new ally was in fact a monster so horrific that his hellish grasp would wreak havoc on immeasurable worlds.

For one that treasures life in the way only the Light can teach, it is a heavy burden to bear.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

'Velen: Prophet's Lesson' concludes leader short stories

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The last of the leader short stories is now available on the official Warcraft website, and it was worth waiting for. Velen: Prophet's Lesson, written by Marc Hutcheson, focuses on Prophet Velen and Anduin Wyrnn, who began studying with Velen in the novel Wolfheart. Also featured is Vindicator Maraad, who not only made his appearance in game on the Alliance ship on Icecrown but has been featured in many other Warcraft products as well. Maraad isn't just a random draenei -- he's also Garona's uncle and has made an appearance in DC Unlimited's series of action figures.

Prophet's Lesson appears to take place just after the Cataclysm as the mortals of Azeroth struggle to recover from the devastation and put an end to Deathwing. The worgen are officially Alliance and Anduin is studying with Velen, so this definitely puts it after Wolfheart in the time line, but Anduin also mentions the rift between himself and his father, which means the story likely takes place before Varian Wrynn: Blood of our Fathers. In Prophet's Lesson, Anduin is studying with Velen as well as helping the draenei take care of sudden group of guests that grows larger by the day, human refugees from the Cataclysm who seek Velen's guidance.

Velen, however, is seeing no one but Prince Anduin -- and this hasn't gone unnoticed by the draenei who are no longer allowed to seek audience with the Prophet. But Anduin has one very pointed question for Prophet Velen: Why didn't he warn the world about the Cataclysm?

Hutcheson did a masterful job with Velen's character, shedding a little light (no pun intended) on what exactly the draenei have been up to during Cataclysm. You can read the full story on Blizzard's newly revamped Expanded Universe site.

Filed under: Lore, Cataclysm

WoW Archivist: The Emerald Dream, Outland, and other Z-axis secrets

The 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?

This week's edition of the Archivist will be a little different than what you may be used to seeing. Rather than exploring a specific event in World of Warcraft's history, we're going to look at a bit of antiquated game design. Specifically, we will be looking at one of Blizzard's old development practices: trying to hide content development in progress on live realms.

Before I begin, I want to note that to my knowledge, none of the hidden locations outlined in this article are accessible anymore. If there are still ways of accessing them on live realms, I want to request that none of you discuss the methods of entering these places on our site. Blizzard hid these places for a reason, even if it didn't do it very well.

Follow along for a look at the Emerald Dream, an early Outland testing ground, and other Z-axis shortcuts and secrets.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, WoW Archivist

WoW Moviewatch: Exodar Disco

Gray let me do Moviewatch today for some reason. Delirium, most likely. It happens to the best of us. The space fever.

Let me tell you a story. The date is Oct. 21, 2010. Draenei enthusiast Mike Sacco, liquor enthusiast Adam Holisky, ImmaTree enthusiast Michael Gray, and Mat McCurley enthusiast Mat McCurley were all busy getting the pre-Blizzcon reader meetup ready to roll at the Anabella hotel. Gray and I began to discuss some of the more ... esoteric WoW machinimas out there. I then proceeded to show Mike Sacco Exodar Disco, because he is a draenei enthusiast and if draenei were real, he'd probably buy one of those Japanese body pillows of one.

But I digress. Exodar Disco is a rerun of Greyfoo's amazingly catchy and fun draenei dance-fest that does a better job with draenei lore than anything in the last four years. This video single-handedly made me appreciate Velen and the draenei race, if only because the visuals were fun and the quality is top-notch Greyfoo polish. Go forth and watch, and remember, many lives were lost to bring you these tab collars.

Interested in the wide world of machinima? We have new movies every weekday here on WoW Moviewatch! Have suggestions for machinima we ought to feature? Toss us an email at moviewatch@wowinsider.com.

Filed under: WoW Moviewatch

The Queue: Normal view

Welcome back to The Queue, WoW.com's daily Q&A column where the WoW.com team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Mike Sacco be your host today.

Happy fifth anniversary, everyone! In honor of such a prestigious age for our young upstart MMO, this edition of the Queue ... has ... well, basically nothing to do with the anniversary at all. I mean, it's not as if you guys asked any anniversary-related questions. So, we're just setting today's Queue to "normal view" and takin' care of business.

Shall we?

Pemberton asked...

How come we can't fly from Darkshore to the Exodar?

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Filed under: The Burning Crusade, Wrath of the Lich King, The Queue, Cataclysm

Ask a Faction Leader: Prophet Velen

WoW.com's prestige in the community has afforded us the opportunity to speak to major Azerothian leadership figures on any subject, and we're letting you, the reader, Ask A Faction Leader!

We recently spoke to Garrosh Hellscream, leader of the Horde's Warsong Offensive, and he shed light on several key issues, including moral dilemmas, basic campfires, faction changes, draenei donk, and the merits of getting eaten by sharks. In this installment of Ask A Faction Leader, we'll be sitting with venerable draenei leader Prophet Velen.

Dear Velen,

Being a prophet, you are probably aware of forthcoming cataclysm. With Thunder Bluff built on 4 mesas, I am worried about safety of the city and its citizens. Since you guys possess some kind of expertise in crashing things (specifically capital cities) I was wondering if you could lend some advice for case it gets struck down.

Best Regards,
Baine Bloodhoof

Velen replies:

Ah, it's good to see Horde leaders initiating a rapport. While I'm certainly not an architect or artificer -- trades better left to younger and stronger draenei -- I have been around for quite a while, so I can give some advice regarding the construction of your city.

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Filed under: The Burning Crusade, Lore, Interviews, Cataclysm, Ask a Faction Leader

Breakfast Topic: The best city for shopping


This discussion site we linked the other day, Epic Advice, is humming with activity, and full of interesting queries and answers about the World of Warcraft. Like this one: which city is the best for running to and from the bank and the AH (the question-asker also wants to get the mage portal in that circuit, but for the purposes of our discussion, we'll assume you're on a bank alt, so no portal necessary)? In terms of speed and ease, which is the best capital city to set up shop in?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics

Retaliation battlegroup down again

For the second Tuesday in a row around the same time (9:00-9:30 pm EST-ish), the US Retaliation battlegroup has crashed. Blizzard has confirmed that it's performing urgent maintenance on the hardware of the affected realms, and they'll provide an update at 11:00 PM EST/8:00 PM PST. Hmmm. Makes you wonder if whatever caused last week's crash was accidentally rolled back during server maintenance earlier today.

The following are the affected realms:


Area 52, Auchindoun, Azuremyst, Blade's Edge, Blood Furnace, Coilfang, Dawnbringer, Exodar, Fizzcrank, Galakrond, Ghostlands, Grizzly Hills, Shattered Halls, Terokkar, The Scryers, The Underbog, Velen, and Zangarmarsh.
My guild's on Retaliation and has consequently found itself without something to raid for the second Tuesday running. Last week their solution was to take off to Mug'thol and do a level 1 Hogger raid, complete with designated tanks and healers, damage meters, and -- to top things off -- a bonafide ninja looter of the Malachite drop. Our server might be down, but our hallowed traditions remain.

Filed under: Realm News, Realm Status, News items

10 things I learned from a destitute alt on an RP realm

I have a few alts on an RP realm that I visit from time to time, and I remember thinking to myself at one point: "These characters are a bunch of deadbeats." I'd gotten too used to the alts on my main realm being a bunch of pampered brats, spoiled rotten by the presence of a hardworking main, so financial discipline had grown to be a thing of the past.

Not so on another realm where you don't have a main, and I realized that unless I went back to a few monetary basics, my alts would wind up dancing naked on mailboxes in pursuit of gold. This is a fine tactic with a long and storied history, but when your most promising alt is a level 16 Undead Mage, you're up the proverbial creek. No one wants to see a rotting, naked corpse.

So I started not being a deadbeat, and it was with surprise and delight that I logged on to find the little tyke sitting on a pretty respectable pile of gold by level 21 -- as in, he can afford to pay for his level 30 mount and training several times over, and still have enough left over to train himself all the way to 45 even if he doesn't make another penny.

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Filed under: Herbalism, Mining, Skinning, Cooking, How-tos, Economy, Humor, Making money, Mounts, Alts

Breakfast Topic: What you call home

One of the more amusing things that polarizes WoW players is the various capital cities. Everyone has a favorite, very few people are ever neutral. Some of my friends like Ironforge for its simplicity, it's all laid out in a circle. Some like Stormwind for the truly city-like appearance. Some even like Darnassus because they have a thing for purple. Some of my friends wish we played Horde so we could have Orgrimmar, because I guess they need more spikes in their life or something. Me? I'm a Stormwind (and Silvermoon City) kind of guy, but Dalaran has stole my heart. Plenty of people hate Dalaran too, though.

Everyone just wants different things out of their cities. I like cities with tons of flavor, with a very city feel. Stormwind feels like people really live there, despite how small it is. Dalaran most definitely feels like a city of mages, and there's a ton of flavor and neat stuff to look at there. The fact that every single person who gives you directions in Dalaran has a name is crazy neat. The little daily event at 9 PM where you get to help turn on the lights is amazingly cool for how simple it is.

How about all of you, what's your favorite? What do you like about it, or dislike about the others? What would your ideal capital have, if you're not very fond of any of them?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics

All the World's a Stage: So you want to be a draenei

This installment of All the World's a Stage is the eighth in a series of roleplaying guides in which we find out all the background information you need to roleplay a particular race or class well, without embarrassing yourself.

The draenei are one of Warcraft's more unique contributions to the realm of fantasy fiction, the one player race without no real precedent in earlier fantasy worlds. These are not your typical elves, orcs and dwarves borrowed from Tolkien or Dungeons and Dragons; the draenei are tall, with hooves, tails, horns and even face-tendrils -- but they are noble and spiritual people, the last remnants of an ancient civilization of magic and beauty.

To begin thinking about what it must be like to live as a draenei, imagine how the human race might be many thousands of years into the future, maybe a quarter of a million years from now. Whatever technology those people might have would probably seem like magic to us. Our descendants might unravel the mysteries of biology to such a degree that they can halt the aging process and live as long as they want to. They may be able to tap on sources of power we haven't even imagined, and act with motivations and purposes we could scarcely understand.

The draenei as a people were once like this, 25,000 years before the setting of World of Warcraft. Even at that time, they were already ancient in their history and advanced far beyond what you and I might understand. Their world, called Argus, was a prosperous society full of great achievements and magical wonders, quite unlike anything we see today. They had a different name then, however -- they were called, the "eredar" -- a name which now upsets the draenei as a painful reminder of everything they have lost, the corruption, the betrayal and the near extermination of everything they have ever known and loved.

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Filed under: Alliance, Draenei, Lore, Guides, RP, All the World's a Stage (Roleplaying)

BlizzCon ticket fiasco sparks fan-created game


If you've been one of the many frustrated players attempting to purchase BlizzCon tickets online since yesterday, then you'll really get a kick out of BlizzCon 08, a mini-game created by Belneiros of Moon Guard (or Toneslice of Exodar).

It's extremely simple to learn how to play, and follows a classic arcade pattern. The premise is that, as a Failbot aka Blizzard employee, you arrive at work only to learn that (gasp) Blizzard forgot that the BlizzCon tickets are going on sale that day! In order to save face, you're going to have to start shooting as many down as possible. After all, there's no superior diversionary tactic.

Armed with your gun, you must do everything possible to prevent the sale of BlizzCon tickets. The more customers that get tickets, the closer you are to death.

It's actually a fun little pass-time that doesn't use much processing power at all. It's a quick play, and its inspiration came from the same refreshing, Failoc ordeal that we've all had to endure. If you sift through our live coverage yesterday, you'll notice that Belneiros wasn't the only bored player that got creative!

Stay tuned to our live blog today for news on ticket sales and our luck (or lack thereof) with acquiring some of the elusive tickets.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Humor, BlizzCon

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