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Posts with tag gnoll

Bringing the "game" back into an MMORPG


One of the big pushes in Mists of Pandaria has been to get the player out interacting with the environment again, doing a lot more than just sitting around a city or a few key spots. Having to interact with your farm, head out to highly popular quests hubs, and going to killing ancient beasts for their bones, it's all part of the same goal: actually do something.

Exactly what this doing is tends to be important though, and hits at a primary aspect of MMORPGs that many people shout whenever titles like World of Warcraft are mentioned: it's a job, not a game. But is that really true, and if it is (hint: it used to be) then how does the game get forced back into it?

So the hint above pretty much gave the premise away: WoW used to not be a game. It was, for a while, a second job (primary for some folks). You'd have to log in, do your material grinding, and then head out to raid. If you had some dailies that you needed to do still you went and did them, but they were mainly for unimportant stuff. Not a lot of raiding gear past a certain point was tied to daily reps.

That was the job. I'm not even going to use the term game there, because a game implies, according to Webster, "activity engaged in for diversion or amusement." Finding mats and doing everything you possibly can just so you can raid isn't exactly diversion or amusement. It's a necessity to get to the amusement; WoW was, I contend, only a half-game for a time; it was the Tyrion Lannister of MMORPGs.

Then came Looking for Raid.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

Frolicking merrily with Martar the Not-So-Smart

Frolicking merrily with Martar the NotSoSmart
Have you ever wondered, while you were wandering the lush forest of Pandaria, what it would be like to have a constant companion at your side? A friend to share the scenery with, someone to reassure you that in the end, everything will be all right? Someone who looks up to you as the triumphant hero that you are, impressed by your various exploits across Azeroth and beyond? Someone to snuggle with on those particularly cold nights at the heights of Kun-Lai Summit?

I'm terribly sorry, but you're out of luck. But we do have a different sort of companion for you -- the kind that interjects with silly catchphrases while he's merrily pulling half the hostile wildlife to your side. The kind that stares down the face of danger without fear, only the empty eyes of one who has taken one too many blows to the head, tongue dangling wildly from the corner of his mouth as a gobbet of drool lazily grazes his cheek.

His name is Martar. He's not-so-smart. But he'll tag along with you if you know where to find him.

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Filed under: Mists of Pandaria

DC Unlimited unveils Series 4 Action Figures

Mike Schramm showed us the first hint of DC Unlimited's Series 4 WoW figures back during ComicCon, but now the DC Direct website gives us a view of the new statues.

The first female "deluxe" collector's figure is being released as part of the new series: Lady Vashj. "Deluxe" mostly means that she's bigger -- she's being hailed as standing as tall as Illidan's sculpt. But, yeah. She looks cool.

Your lineup for Series 4 inclues:

  • Succubus Demon: Amberlash • 8.5"
  • Tuskarr: Tavru Akua • 7"
  • Gnoll Warlord: Gangris Riverpaw • 7.75"
  • Murloc 2-pack: Fish-eye and Gibbergill • 6.5"

Uh huh. It's got a Murloc 2-pack. I suspect that's going to become my premier Christmas gift for friends and foes alike. The Tuskarr also looks pretty cool, and confirms this Series lives in the world of Wrath.

You've still got a little while to wait on these new figures, though. The advance solicits advertise that they won't go on sale until April 2009. That's about eight months out. So maybe they'll be the premiere Christmas gift next time around.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, Expansions

DC shows off what look like Series 4 Figures at ComicCon


Empire magazine is already posting pictures from this weekend's ComicCon out in San Diego (WoW Insider also has correspondents there on site), and though they have no idea what they've stumbled across, it sure looks to us like what might be DC Unlimited's Series 4 WoW figurines. And rather than just the standard player characters, Blizzard and DC are going a little NPC for this series -- as you can see above, they've included everyone's favorite elite gnoll, Hogger himself. Also included in the series are a Succubus of some sort (with what looks like a Tauren with a polearm in the back there), and a gun-wielding Tauren Hunter.

The figures all have signs that say "Worldwide Debut Friday 4pm" on them, so it looks like we're getting to see them a little early. And Blizzard is excited, too -- Slorkuz has even written a poetic ode to Hogger in honor of his likeness being immortalized.

We'll keep an eye out for more info -- looks like DC is expanding their action figure line to include a few more less traditional character types. Who else should they honor with a figure in the future?

Filed under: Items, Fan stuff, Blizzard, NPCs

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