So we've seen parts 1 and 2 of the Garrison Preview, and now it's time for part 3, which should feature ewoks if my memory serves me. This time, however, instead of ewoks we get followers - they fulfill many of the same functions as ewoks but they're mostly less cute. Mostly. I think Lantresor of the Blade is adorable, myself.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to have Leeroy Jenkins, Milhouse Manastorm or Archmage Vargoth as your companions and friends? Well, wonder no more! It's like pet battles, only with NPC's! You can collect as many followers as you like for your garrison, but there's a limit on how many you can have active at a time - think of it as a 'too many cooks' situation. Each follower has specific abilities that make them better or worse for specific missions (some have crowd control, for example) and some followers will even be your bodyguard, accompanying you on missions and protecting you as you (and they) level up.
One of the largest and most highly-discussed features of Warlords of Draenor is the garrison -- a stronghold on Draenor that you get to construct and customize to your heart's content. Hand in hand with the garrison are a multitude of other things to look forward to -- missions, quests, blueprints, profession buildings, building bonuses, followers, and more. You aren't going to necessarily be spending a lot of time sitting around in your garrison, but you'll be ducking back to it periodically in between everything else there is to do on Draenor.
You can kind of think of your garrison as your own, personalized capital city in a way -- you can customize it with whatever buildings you want, and you can switch those buildings out if you decide you're better off with a different kind of building. As for your followers, they are the citizens of your garrison, the NPCs that wander around doing various tasks and spitting out conversations with passers-by. But followers are far more than just eye-candy for your garrison -- they are useful tools to help you get the most out of what the expansion has to offer.
Ah, the Barov family. If you've been playing WoW for any length of time, you're likely well acquainted with the brothers Barov. The last two heirs to the Barov family fortune, Alexi and Weldon Barov used to send players both Alliance and Horde to the opposite faction's camps in order to murder each other. Once the head of the offending brother was returned, players were rewarded with the Barov Peasant Caller, a trinket that summoned Barov servants. In Cataclysm, the Barov brothers seemed to have come to an accord, each no longer intent on the murder of the other, and instead focused on assaulting Scholomance.
But in Mists, both Weldon and Alexi disappeared without a trace. The Barov Peasant Caller was no longer able to be obtained, Scholomance was revamped, and the brothers Barov vanished. Some players idly wondered if this meant the end of the Barov line -- we can officially say no, it did not. Why? Because it looks like Weldon and Alexi decided to team up and band together to enter the lumber industry, and you can find them both on Draenor. In fact, you can recruit either Weldon for the Alliance, or Alexi for the Horde, as a follower for your garrison.
And that Peasant Caller? It's back, and it's gotten a substantial upgrade along the way.
Sometimes, death knights aren't all about death, destruction, and cold. Sometimes they really just want to kick back and reflect on what's important in the world -- fishing. Well, at least one death knight would rather be fishing, and his name is Abu'gar. Abu'gar was never exactly thrilled with the idea of serving the Lich King, he just wanted to spend his undeath relaxing by the side of a warm lake. You can find Abu'gar out in a lovely secluded glade in Nagrand, contemplating the water, the scenery, and the fishing conditions, all of which seem to be pretty idyllic as far as the death knight is concerned.
But unfortunately, he's missing a few key items to take advantage of the awesome fishing spot he just found -- and that's where you come in. Scattered around the zone are the various tools Abu'gar needs to get a fantastic day of fishing in under the warm skies of Nagrand. Apparently Abu'gar is the forgetful sort, or simply neglects to pick up his things when he's moving on.
One of the most prized, beloved items from the Burning Crusade expansion had nothing to do with your armor or your prowess in slaying endless dungeon and raid bosses. In fact, it wasn't even a quest reward -- it was simply a quest item, Archmage Vargoth's Staff, which was used to summon an image of Archmage Vargoth himself. Many players didn't bother handing in the quest in which the staff was obtained, because there was something appealing about having Vargoth on call. Players were so pleased with Vargoth that the image was eventually changed to respond to player emotes -- when you danced, Vargoth would chuckle at your absurdity.
In Warlords of Draenor, where you go, Vargoth will follow -- or at least he will if you can find him. A rare level 100 follower with a whopping 550 ilvl, Vargoth, or rather, his image, is a solid addition to any garrison. But Vargoth isn't the easiest mage in the world to track down, and requires a little legwork and exploration if you want to add him to your army. Vargoth may be a powerful mage ... but he's not so good at getting to Draenor.
The folks over at El's Extreme Anglin' have provided a comprehensive step-by-step guide on how to obtain legendary fisherman Nat Pagle as a follower for your garrison in Warlords of Draenor. Over the years Nat Pagle has become somewhat of a beloved figure in World of Warcraft, and has been the focus of numerous fishing quests -- some obscure, some mundane. In Warlords, you're going to have to have him as a follower if you want a shot at fishing up the rarest and most difficult fish in the expansion: Lunkers.
To get Nat, you'll first have to unlock the garrison Fishing Shack, which becomes available at level 96. From their, your garrison fishing vendor will send you on a quest to catch a specific type of fish from a specific place. Once you turn that in you'll get a quest to go find Nat Pagle, and from there begins his recruitment questline. Once you complete all his requirements -- to fish up various Lunkers throughout Draenor using special bait -- you'll be rewarded with Nat as a level 100 rare-quality garrison follower. You'll also be able to start catching Lunkers throughout Draenor without using bait. No word yet on what Lunkers do, but my guess is that they'll be required for certain high-level cooking recipes, so devoted raiders or guild suppliers probably want to make sure to schmooze Nat into their garrisons! Happy fishing!
Broken things are one of my guilty pleasures. Not completely broken, mind you -- something that doesn't work at all isn't much fun. But things that are just broken enough that they function incorrectly are wonderful. A household animatronic with low batteries, for example. Or when game physics go bad. This guilty pleasure means I love alpha and beta test phases of games. Sometimes the stories that result from a glitch in a game tickle me more than the actual stories.
Daleera Moonfang, pictured above, is the subject of one such story. While playing the latest Warlords of Draenor alpha build, I'd just recruited Daleera as a follower in my garrison. She'd been with my crew for no more than five minutes before I noticed her over by a keg of ale, drinking away. I wandered over there just for the sake of saying hello and noticed her actions were looping a whole lot faster than they should. Only a few seconds passed between each refill of her mug and she never stopped. She'd fill, drink it down in one go, then immediately refill. While refilling, she'd comment on how much she enjoyed the drink before it. "That'll get you there, son," she said. "Just like Mom used to make. It's like a little piece of Ironforge."
It doesn't matter that the NPC that loiters by the keg is randomized. It could have been any of my followers. But Daleera was the first, and now, in my heart, it will always be her. Daleera Moonfang is my hard-drinking priestess of Elune. She could drink dwarves and pandaren under the table. She's honed her boozy craft for an entire elven lifetime. It isn't canon, but it's my canon.
Tell me: do you love broken things? I want your stories!
We've been waiting very impatiently, almost salivating really, for more details on Grrisons and how they're going to work. Well, at last, our wait is over. Blizzard has finally dropped some of that sweet, sweet structure-creating science on us.
In this post, part one of a four series, we get the basics for how Garrisons will work -- how your Garrison is part of the leveling process, how followers will work and how you can recruit them, the missions you can send them on and how that will benefit the Garrison, how we'll expand the Garrison with new building and use each zone to expand their role in the expansion.
As the story unfolds, you'll find that Garrisons are intimately integrated into every zone-whether you choose to follow the main quest path or just head off into the hills to explore, you will meet allies (and enemies) in every corner of the world. While your main fortress will always be in Shadowmoon Valley (Alliance) or Frostfire Ridge (Horde), you will establish Garrison outposts in Gorgrond, Talador, Nagrand, and Spires of Arak, all customized based on your building choices. Eventually, your forces will span the continent, and you will have an army capable of assaulting the fortified Iron Horde Foundry. Will your troops succeed? That's entirely up to you, commander.
This in particular is of interest - you apparently won't just have the one Garrison, but a linked series of fortifications throughout Draenor to serve as your means of recruiting and defending your followers for the push against the Iron Horde.
PAX East 2014 has come and gone, but we at WoW Insider have come away from the weekend with juicy new information to share with you about Warlords of Draenor. During the expo, I sat down for a chat with senior game designers Steve Burke and Brian Holinka, lead class designer Kris Zierhut, and other developers.
In our brief time together, they told me some exciting info about garrisons, raiding, transmog, and the expansion's starting experience. They also provided insight into what a boosted level 90 will experience after the expansion launches.
Please note that mild spoilers about the early story of Warlords of Draenor will follow. Join me after the break for all the new info!
People have wanted it forever and now, it's finally here: World of Warcraft is implementing its own unique form of player housing, the Garrison feature. Quite frankly, if you ever played really old school Dungeons and Dragons, the Garrison feels a lot like the old dominions that players could get in the Companion rules. Based on the way building a settlement felt in the original Warcraft RTS games, building your Garrison gives you benefits including epic gear, access to professions you don't normally have in a limited fashion, and customize the buildings in the Garrison for specific customizable benefits.
The Garrison system includes NPC followers who can go on missions for you while you're offline for various benefits as well. This ends up nearly being a complete minigame - my first impression is that you can almost play an entirely new RTS minigame while playing WoW.
Gonna be a good one (but is it ever not?) on our podcast today -- Contributing Editors Lesley Smith and Alex Ziebart will both be in the virtual broadcast booth with Turpster and I, and we'll be talking about the biggest stories in World of Warcraft over the past week, including patch 3.1.1 and all of the fixes that have been dropping lately, server outages and how bad they've been, what things are like in Ulduar so far, what the new 5-man might be, and the crack-in-a-twinkie that is Peggle in WoW. That's actually a lot of stuff -- we better talk fast.
The show starts up at April 25, 2009 3:30 PM EST over on our Ustream page, or you can just click below to find the embedded Ustream feed in the second half of this post. And of course if you can't make it to listen live today, don't worry, because the show will be recorded and available in its entirety (well, minus the preshow and aftershow that we usually do for the live listeners) on Monday as usual.
Oh, and we owe you readers a big thank-you: our Twitter page did in fact hit 9000 followers this week (actually, over 9000), so it looks like Turpster and I will have to gussy up and turn on the cameras for a video show. Stay tuned to the show today for more information on that, and keep an eye on the site here for when we'll be doing it. It'll definitely be something to see. Get it? "See"? Video?
Good times as always on the podcast last Saturday -- we welcomed blogger Nick Whelan on, of his own Curse of Senility and the newest writer on our own Blood Pact column, all about Warlocks. Turpster and Michael "Belfaire" Sacco also joined us, and we answered your emails (including some follow-up on just how loyal you should be to your guild, even when they're not really progressing), as well as talked about the most popular WoW insider posts for the past week: why 25-man gear should be better than 10-man gear, new news out of patch 3.1 (which, if you listen to Turpster, is right around the corner), and all of the April Fools jokes that went around last Wednesday.
You can download the show at any of the links below, or pick it up by subscribing in iTunes (and it's been a while since we asked you to leave some reviews over there, so if you haven't ever done that and really enjoy the show, please do tell people what you think). Also, don't forget that we're in the middle of a bit Twitter-drive: we're aiming for over 9000 followers on Twitter, and if we can pull that off, we'll be doing a video version of the weekly podcast, so you'll get to see our ugly mugs as we talk (and you could probably even convince us to dress up for it -- you haven't lived until you've seen The T in a tuxedo). And I don't want to put any pressure on you, but we're nearing our 100th show, and how cool would it be if we hit our goal by then and did the special show on the anniversary? Just sayin'.
Enjoy this show this week -- we'll be back live next Saturday as usual.
Get the podcast: [iTunes] Subscribe to the WoW Insider Show directly in iTunes. [RSS] Add the WoW Insider Show to your RSS aggregator. [MP3] Download the MP3 directly.
The recording of the show is now out on the feed and at the links below, so download away. Huge thanks yet again to Alex Albrecht for stopping by the show, and congrats go out to him on his Streamys win on Saturday. We'll be back as usual next week, kicking off the show as always just a little bit before 3:30pm Eastern.
And don't forget: we met our Facebook goal of 4,000 fans, and the song that came out of that turned out pretty darn epic, if we say so ourselves. But we've got another goal: we're aiming for over 9,000 followers on Twitter, and if we can pull that off, we'll do a live video version of the podcast. And who knows what kind of hilarity will ensue from that one. If you're on Twitter (or even if you're not) and haven't started following us, please do! And hey, we tweet all kinds of things that never show up on the site, so it's even more WoW Insider for your efforts. See you next week.
Get the podcast: [iTunes] Subscribe to the WoW Insider Show directly in iTunes. [RSS] Add the WoW Insider Show to your RSS aggregator. [MP3] Download the MP3 directly.
We had a great time as usual last weekend on the podcast -- Dan O'Halloran and BigRedKitty joined me on the WoW Insider Show, and we chatted about the most popular stories in WoW from the last week. We answered your emails, including how to fill up your guild with quality raiders and what kinds of things you can do to make leveling an alt easier (including not leveling an alt at all).
Get the podcast: [iTunes] Subscribe to the WoW Insider Show directly in iTunes. [Ustream] Listen to the unedited recording in Ustream. [RSS] Add the WoW Insider Show to your RSS aggregator. [MP3] Download the MP3 directly.
Whew. If you guessed it would be a busy show, you're probably right. Plus, if all goes according to plan (I know Turpster is having some issues with some of the musicians he's hired), we will hopefully have the new song all ready to play for you, as the reward for hitting 4,000 fans on our Facebook page. And don't forget that our Twitter challenge is still ongoing -- if we can get "over 9000" followers on our Twitter account, we'll do a video version of the podcast. So join Twitter (if you haven't yet) and get all of your friends to follow us as well!
Should be a good time. We'll see you tomorrow afternoon at 3:30pm Eastern, or 20:30 GMT, or whatever time that is in your neck of the woods, either over on the Ustream page or right here on the feed after the break. Talk to you then.