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Breakfast Topic: Do you play WoW together with your significant other?

Breakfast Topic Do you play WoW together with your significant other
The good news: Success! You've managed to recruit your significant other into World of Warcraft!

The bad news: He thinks your raiding guild is boring and he's off to dive back into retro content and enter transmog contests with a guild you consider suspiciously silly.

From the sound of your comments earlier this week, many of you who've successfully recruited friends or family members into Azeroth are feeling lonely once again. It seems that many of the new recruits simply move on, move up, move over ... Less moving, more partnering, please!

Today's Breakfast Topic is designed for those of you whose significant others also play World of Warcraft. You play the same game -– but do you play together in the same content? Do you play as a team or in the same guild or raid?

Do you play WoW together with your significant other?
Yes, we do everything in game together.492 (31.9%)
No, we prefer different parts of the game.199 (12.9%)
Sometimes, if one of us needs help or for special events.438 (28.4%)
Yes, but only with certain characters.412 (26.7%)

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

Drama Mamas: Roommate vs. family

Drama Mamas Lisa Poisso and Robin Torres are experienced gamers and real-life mamas -- and just as we don't want our precious babies to be the ones kicking and wailing on the floor of the checkout lane next to the candy, neither do we want you to become known as That Guy on your realm.

Ah, college. Good times. The music was fun, too.

On to the drama.
Hey drama mamas!

So, I'm going to try and keep this short. I have played on the same realm for three years (since I started). My dad and brother have both recently started playing and joined me on this realm. My dad has two 85s, and my brother is still working on his first. I've also developed great relationships with my guild, but its starting to dwindle down.

Here's my problem. I'm starting college next month, and my roommate (who played nor only on a different server, but the opposite faction) wants me to join her. I have no problem with this, but she really wants me to just server transfer as opposed to just starting a new alt.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Drama Mamas

X-53 Recruit-a-Friend mount being retired soon

Image
If you've ever wanted to get your hands on Recruit-A-Friend mount #2, the X-53 Touring Rocket two-seater, then you had better get moving. Blizzard has announced that the X-53 rocket will be retired soon to make way for the new Recruit-A-Friend mount and (presumably) program for the launch of Mists of Pandaria. One might even take this as a clue that a new Recruit-A-Friend is coming soon, which means expansion time could be right around the corner.

As for what the new mount is going to be, we have no idea just yet. However, MMO-Champion and Wowhead have datamined achievements, items, mounts, and some other clues that have shown a Recruit-A-Friend 3 mount in the files but no associated mount yet. Hit the jump for the full announcement about the X-53 rocket and speculate about what the next RAF mount is going to be.

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Filed under: Blizzard, News items

Veteran WoW players given free copies of the game to gift to new players

Many WoW players were shocked and confused to learn that they had a free copy of World of Warcraft Classic (it's the new "official" vanilla) sitting in their inbox starting last week. In a push for more subscribers before the big patch 4.2 push, tons of free copies of the game were distributed out to veterans to give to friends to introduce them to World of Warcraft. Not only is the game free, but these veteran reward accounts come with 30 day subscriptions for your buddies.

Nethaera commented on the veteran emails being sent out -- they are not scams and are being sent to players who selected to receive news and offers from Blizzard. If you haven't gotten an veteran rewards email, check your spam folder or contact Blizzard support. I postulated on a recent Lawbringer what the world would look like with free WoW, and this seems like a good first step to getting more WoW into more hands.

WoW Veteran Reward free copies
The veteran award email and offer are legitimate and are being sent out to veterans who have previously opted in to receiving news and special offers from Blizzard Entertainment. We may run more of these types of promotions in the future, so if this is something you are interested in, we suggest opting in as soon as possible so you don't miss out.



The news is already rolling out for the upcoming WoW Patch 4.2! Preview the new Firelands raid, marvel at the new legendary staff, and get the inside scoop on new quest hubs -- plus new Tier 12 armor!

Filed under: Blizzard, Cataclysm

Recruit-a-friend now grants bonus experience, levels to 80

Big news coming for those of you getting friends into the game -- Recruit-a-friend bonus experience and "granted" levels now goes all the way up to 80. Players have been asking for this feature and have been wondering when Blizzard would raise the Recruit-a-friend cap from level 60. Now, Outlands and Northrend content should be quicker than ever for players to complete with their friends and leveling partners.

The Recruit-a-friend change was noted in the newest version of the patch 4.2 Rage of the Firelands patch notes found on Blizzard's community site.

Patch 4.2 Patch Notes
Recruit-A-Friend now awards bonus experience and free level grants to level 80, up from level 60.

Check out the Recruit-a-friend FAQ for more information on the program and how to level characters together and the benefits received.


The news is already rolling out for the upcoming WoW Patch 4.2! Preview the new Firelands raid, marvel at the new legendary staff, and get the inside scoop on new quest hubs -- plus new Tier 12 armor!

Filed under: Cataclysm

Breakfast Topic: Strange habits

As I write this, I am dreading the week to come. After many months of going back and forth on the matter, I have decided to leave my guild for greener pastures. I'm reluctant to leave, though, since I do like my current guild; the people are nice, the raids are fun and we have a raiding philosophy of "work with what you've got" that I have always enjoyed. Still, for everything that I love, there are shortcomings and I am willing to risk losing what I have to see if my perfect guild exists somewhere out there.

So off I go to a new guild and server where I know no one. I'm scared -- scared I won't be good enough, scared they won't like me even if I am and scared I might be making a huge mistake in leaving my friends. You just have to swallow those kinds of thoughts, though. As a raider, I'm no stranger to moving around, and I've come up with many ways to deal with it.

One thing I do to cope is heading up to the spot you see in the picture before I transfer. This is my favorite hiding spot in the game, only accessible by players meticulous enough to complete the Higher Learning achievement. Up here, I will sit and eat some cake, then after I've had my fill, set out my little green rag doll on the bed and /sleep. The reason for this is so that when I log back in after my transfer has gone through, I know exactly where I'll be and I can pretend I'm waking up from a dream (or nightmare) to a new, promising day. I'm not sure why I do this; maybe the familiarity? It's really all quite silly, but I've been doing it for well over a year now and it seems natural.

Do you have any strange habits or rituals you do in game?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

The 10 people you need to know in WoW


One of my favorite people to read online is a fellow by the name of Pjammer on Livejournal. He's smart, funny, and a gifted writer, and if you are not sobbing by the end of "King of Masochists" then you are pretty much a terrible person. But another great entry is "The 16 Essential People In Your Life," which lists such valuable acquaintances as the Computer Security Guru, the Wolf, the Consigliere, and (most importantly) the Best Friend. Pjammer, quoting Harvey Mackay, correctly notes that 2 am is a bad time to make new friends. These are the kind of people you want in your life as early as possible, and to exercise a positive influence on its course.

My realm's seen a number of guild instability issues of late, which is something most of us have come to expect with an upcoming expansion. I've found reason to mull over how the virtual world differs from the real world with respect to friendship, backstabbing, greed, betrayal, honor, and how people choose to handle their problems. In my considered opinion it doesn't differ at all, and your experience ingame is largely determined by the network of players assembled around you, whether that alliance is a recognized one in the form of a guild or simply a more informal group of friends.

So, from my own experience and with a hat tip to Pjammer, these are the people you want in your posse for the best possible experience in the game:

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Filed under: Druid, Hunter, Mage, Paladin, Priest, Rogue, Shaman, Warlock, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Guilds, Expansions, Features, Guides, Death Knight

Alt Text just short of the real bribe

Lore Sjöberg at Wired's Alt Text talked yesterday about the Zhevra mount you get as part of the Recruit-a-Friend program. It's a pretty fun read. He talks about the myriad of vanity items, and how these items can be such a motivator for WoW players, even though they don't really affect your gameplay at all.

I do want to add a point to his article, though. The new Recruit-a-Friend benefit isn't just the Zhevra. For me, the ability to gain triple-XP is the huge motivator. I'm involved in a Guild that's doing it's best to truck through Zul'Aman content. I can't wait to get a good friend of mine involved in the fun, but getting from 0 to 70 is going to take a while.

Even with the speed levelling records out there, going from zip to end-game isn't going to happen overnight. So, while my friend will be starting after Labor Day weekend, there's a little bit of delay before she's rocking out to left-handed Nalorakk. The triple-XP bonus -- and the ability to teleport me to her when she needs help -- overcomes the big hurdle to getting a friend started.

This is the real power of the new Recruit-a-Friend benefit, in my opinion. The Zhevra's cool and all, but the XP bonus and teleportation feature makes getting my friend involved three times faster. The benefit doesn't just reward getting friends involved, it empowers us to get our friends involved.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, News items, Leveling, Mounts

Study says social games make people more social

Our good friends at Joystiq reported on a study earlier from Nottingham Trent University (it's in England) about MMO gamers and their social behaviors. And supposedly-- are you sitting for this one?-- massively multiplayer online games actually help people meet others and make friends. Go figure!

They surveyed 1,000 gamers (which is not a huge sample, actually), and found that almost half had actually met another player in real life, and one in ten developed "physical relationships" with someone they'd met in a game. 40% of people discussed sensitive issues with online friends rather than real-life ones, and 30% of players were attracted to another player. 80% of players also played not only with online friends, but with real-life friends and family as well. And according to the study, women were more likely to both be attracted to other players, and to eventually date them, and while women play for "therapeutic refreshment," men play for "curiosity, astonishment, and interest."

50% of respondents said World of Warcraft was their game of choice, so while the study was actually about MMO players, it's not a stretch to say it's just about WoW players (and pretty hardcore players, too-- average play time per week was 22.85 hours!). Like I said, 1,000 people is a pretty small sample, but apparently a journal approved it-- the study will be published in CyberPsychology and Behavior.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Odds and ends

Breakfast Topic: Recruiting regrets

I've never recruited anyone to the game (I have helped convince a friend to play, actually, but the truth is that he didn't need much convincing), so I've never imagined a situation like the one that faces Aerna: she and another friend recruited a third friend to play WoW with them, but now he's become nothing but an annoyance. He begs for powerleveling, doesn't know how to play his class, and generally makes a mess of things, forcing her to run away from him to play Horde (so it's not a complete loss..).

So what can she do? I'm trying to figure out why they're friends in the first place-- can it really be true that someone you like hanging out with in RL can turn into a menace inside Azeroth? It could be that he just needs some guidance on ingame etiquette and strategy. On the other hand, I can definitely see how two people who don't have much in common (co-workers, maybe) might find their relationship pushed to the limit when brought to the world of Azeroth. Have you ever recruited someone to play the game that actually ruined the experience for you?

Filed under: Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Breakfast Topics

WoW Insider Best of 2006: Friend, Enemy, and Instance

All this week, we're announcing our picks (from your nominations) for the best of the year in Azeroth. Lots of great stuff happened in the World of Warcraft this year, and we've sifted through all of it to come up with the stuff we'll remember for a long time.

Yesterday, we announced the awards for Server, Class, and Guild of the Year, and today we're proud to tell you our picks for Friend of the Year, Enemy of the Year, and Instance of the Year. Next year, we'll have all new foes (are you prepared?) and friends, not to mention tons of new instances. But before all the changes come, we're looking back at two NPCs that helped and hurt us this year, and the swirly portal we most enjoyed walking through. The winners are right after the break below.

And don't forget to come back all this week-- we've still got Player of the Year and Best and Worst Blizzard Move of the Year to announce, so stay tuned.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, WoW Insider Business, Virtual selves, Blizzard, Instances

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