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Posts with tag hellfire-peninsula

WoW Archivist: Bottlenecks

Gyrocopter jam
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?

Wherever thousands of players try to complete on-rails content, bottlenecks are inevitable. For Warlords of Draenor, Blizzard is trying to be proactive about eliminating them. Back in July, CM Zorbrix posted a "targeted feedback request" about bottlenecks in the beta. Given that the introductory experience is completely on rails before the expansion unleashes players into its less structured zones, this is a real concern.

WoW hasn't had the best track record when it comes to bottlenecks. As we help Blizzard loosen the bottlenecks of the future, let's revisit those of the past.

The great gyrocopter jam of 2012

Blizzard's server tech has come a long way since the game's launch. Lag and crashes are no longer rampant during expansion launches. But sometimes, other problems can prohibit players from progressing on Day 1. If we're talking bottlenecks, we have to start with the most infamous one in all of WoW, which also happens to be one of the most recent.

This was a problem that people saw coming. I found a thread on MMO Champion from September 2012 where a poster writes, "On Beta - everyone had to funnel through a single vehicle quest to proceed on the Jade Forest quest line. I'm a touch concerned that this is going to be way worse than any other expansion..."

And this guy was totally right. OK, maybe Mists wasn't as bad as The Burning Crusade overall, but the ironically named Unleash Hell was still the biggest -- and most dramatic -- bottleneck ever caused by a single quest.

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Filed under: WoW Archivist

WoW Archivist: Burned by Hellfire Peninsula

The Path of Glory in Hellfire Peninsula
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?

When Mists of Pandaria goes live later this month, players will all begin leveling in the same zone for the first time since 2006. In Cataclysm and Wrath of the Lich King, Blizzard gave us two zones to choose from at the beginning of our adventures. Wrath split players up on either side of Northrend with Borean Tundra and Howling Fjord. Cataclysm's starting zones put players on different sides of the planet with Mount Hyjal and the less popular but unique underwater saga of Vashj'ir.

In contrast, The Burning Crusade's Hellfire Peninsula put us all on opposite sides of the street. That is not a joke. It is literally true -- see the image above! As you can guess, this led to problems. Let's look back at the Hellfire experience and try to gauge what we're in for when we arrive at the Jade Forest shortly after midnight on September 25.

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Filed under: WoW Archivist

Breakfast Topic: Back to Hellfire

Image
So I'm back on Outland, leveling up a blood DK on Hellfire Peninsula. Why? Well, partially because that's how I learn how classes work. I haven't played blood this expansion, and it's easier for me to grasp how the spec has changed by leveling up with it rather than just picking up one of my other DKs and starting at 80 or 85. I even deleted a DK to roll this one.

But another reason is because I really like Hellfire Peninsula, now that I can fly around on it. I enjoy the Hellfire Citadel instances (tanked two today), and I go without heirlooms just so I can actually get upgrades from them. I even like seeking out and finding little quest hubs here and there, scattered about the zone.

Now, I didn't like Hellfire when I first went there in 2007. And I didn't like taking alts there during Wrath of the Lich King. But time has mellowed me on the zone. For one thing, it's some of the oldest questing content left in the game, and nostalgia has painted it with a rosy patina. I like catching up with Arator or seeing what Nazgrel is up to. And also, there's a touch of revenge in there now that I can easily solo Overlord. (I did actually manage to solo Arazzius on a level 63 DK when Wrath first came out, but now it's easy.) Plus, with transmog, you can't tell what a clown suit I'm wearing in that picture. It's awesome, really.

So how about you? Any zone you like against the consensus of the playerbase and perhaps all common sense?

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm has destroyed Azeroth as we know it; nothing is the same! In WoW Insider's Guide to Cataclysm, you can find out everything you need to know about WoW's third expansion, from leveling up a new goblin or worgen to breaking news and strategies on endgame play.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics, The Burning Crusade, Death Knight

Arcane Brilliance: Mage leveling guide, 59-68

It's time once again for Arcane Brilliance, the weekly mage column that would like to thank its readers profusely for the deluge of screenshots it received last week. Arcane Brilliance sent out the call, and you guys responded in droves. There were so many, in fact, that it was an impossible task to select just one for the column. Arcane Brilliance finally went with this one, apparently of an undead pimp of some type, simply because it made Arcane Brilliance chuckle. Also, the column this week is about leveling through Outland, and this is a pretty good representation of how your mage will look throughout that leg of the journey: like the mutant love-child of the entire cast of Saved by the Bell.

Seriously... you guys are awesome. Sooooooo many good pictures to use. I may have to start writing like 12 of these a week, just to have an excuse to use all of them. Thanks again, and keep them coming. Even if I don't get to use them, I just enjoy browsing through them. So many mages, so little time.

Last week, our mage leveling guide hit level 58 and fled vanilla WoW for the alien landscapes of Outland. This week, we'll tackle the 10 levels your mage will be spending there, amongst the hellboars, sporebats, and ravagers.

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Filed under: Mage, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Quests, Expansions, Features, The Burning Crusade, Leveling, Guides, Classes, Talents, (Mage) Arcane Brilliance

The Queue: Of vampires and lances

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

We're going to jump right in today, because we have plenty to talk about this time around!

NarwhalFrenzy asked...


"Referring to the quest Out of Body Experience, we already know what happened to Prince Keleseth and Prince Valanar, but will we ever figure out what happened to the other darkfallen there, like Prince Theraldis or Prince Atherann?"

I have no doubt we'll be seeing them in Patch 3.3, in and around Icecrown. Prince Theraldis (the one on a horse (with an equine-themed pashmina afghan)) seems to have been the overseer of that whole project going on during Out of Body Experience, so I wouldn't be surprised if he turns out to be a raid boss and Prince Atherann is in a 5-man or a group quest elsewhere. Though it would be interesting if they were a side-by-side raid boss, like the Twin Emperors. Hm!

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Queue

Ask a Beta Tester: Starter zones and starter epics

Just a little earlier, Allison Robert posted questions we wish we had been asked on Ask a Beta Tester. Me? I'm still going to answer the questions we have been asked, starting with Jay's question...

In Warcraft III:The Frozen Throne, the Blood Elves and Naga teamed up to wage a massive battle against Arthas right on the slopes of Icecrown. It's already been mentioned that settlements and Ruins from further back, when Arthas's expedition land are still there. Is there any sign of the Belf and Naga ruins from their assault?


In Icecrown it's nothing but Scourge and the Scourge's servants as far as the eye can see. Anything that had been there previously is gone. There are Naga ruins further out, though. Off the coast of the Borean Tundra there are some Naga structures you'll be questing in. For those of you sick of killing Naga like I am, don't worry. There's a twist.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, The Burning Crusade, Wrath of the Lich King

Hellfire Fortifications grants an Insignia


Reader Zanthix of Gul'dan let us know, and I just confirmed, that the Hellfire Fortifications PvP quest in Hellfire Peninsula now grants a little extra welcome gift to Outland when you do it. In addition to the Marks of Thrallmar or Honor Hold that you get as a reward, you also now get an Insignia of the Horde or Alliance, to get you started on PvP.

And yes, it is just a start -- the Insignia removes all movement-impairing effects, but it doesn't have any extra resilience like the epic PvP trinkets you can get from turning in honor, so if you're doing lots of PvP, you'll still want to grind for the other trinkets. It is equivalent to the trinket sold for ~2800 honor (that used to be a class-specific trinket, but is now basically faction-specific), just a little easier to get.

I also checked the Halaa PvP quest in Nagrand, but there's no extra trinket reward there, just the usual daily gold and the extra honor. The Armory shows that this is the only place you can get it, save for the usual honor vendors. So if you haven't nabbed a PvP trinket yet, go take some fortifications in Hellfire.

Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Patches, Items, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, PvP

Lichborne: Gearing up in Outland and beyond

Every week, Daniel Whitcomb brings you analysis, opinions, and advice on the world of the Death Knight in Lichborne.

The Death Knight, as is expected, is still very much a class in flux. This sometimes makes it difficult to pontificate too much about certain aspects of the Death Knight class, because they may be completely different in the next Beta build.

That said, a lot of aspects of the Death Knight class are solidifying nicely at this point. Itemization, or at least the way Death Knights use stats, is pretty solid, and worth discussing so that you have an idea of what gear upgrades to look for you as you exit the Ebon Hold and head out into the wider world.

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Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Expansions, Leveling, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Breakfast Topic: Favorite Outland zone


Wrath is upon us, but who cares? Pssh. Expansions are silly anyhow. No, I don't mean that, but let's talk Burning Crusade for a minute. Everyone has favorite zones from WoW Classic, and I've already decided my favorite zones of Wrath of the Lich King. Not many people really talk about their favorites from The Burning Crusade.

I'll completely agree that a lot of the locations in The Burning Crusade don't match up to our favorites in WoW Classic, but there are places I enjoy. Zangarmarsh is by far my favorite zone. No contest. It's the only zone that really gives me the feeling of "I'm on an alien world." It's something I wouldn't see on Azeroth. The blue tones, the giant mushrooms, the strange marsh creatures. It blew me away my first time running through it. It really was a different world there.

Outland was a bit too heavy on the futuristic sci-fi, but I think Zangarmarsh hit the right tone. What did you all think of Outland? Do you have a favorite zone? We're all eager to move on to Northrend, but is there a zone you'll miss when we're all idling in the frozen north instead of on Draenor? What did you like about it?
Your favorite Outland zone
Hellfire Peninsula501 (6.4%)
Zangarmarsh1449 (18.5%)
Terokar Forest282 (3.6%)
Nagrand4145 (53.0%)
Blade's Edge Mountains177 (2.3%)
Shadowmoon Valley438 (5.6%)
Netherstorm822 (10.5%)

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics, Expansions, The Burning Crusade

Neth hints at getting ready for Wrath

Mookou asks for a "51-point talent preview" before the expansion, and while we probably won't actually get that, what we'll get is likely the same we got with the Burning Crusade release -- about a month before the expansion, there'll be a huge downloadable content patch for everyone (we've heard before that it will be patch 3.0) that will contain all of the updates everyone is getting: all of the talent updates, game mechanic changes, model updates, and so on that we're going to see in the expansion. Blizzard will make all the changes and fixes around that patch, and then when Wrath is actually released, you'll just be installing Northrend content, and the game itself will be (supposedly) ready for all of it to work together. And Neth confirms that this is probably the plan -- it should work much like last time around, though the patch will probably be closer to release day.

Now, Blizzard is much better at this than they used to be, so we'd imagine that (hopefully) things will go a little smoother this time around, and we won't have nearly as many problems or hotfixes as we saw last expansion. But then again, we do know they are planning things a little differently this time around -- they've divided the entry and exit zones up, so we won't see a big mess like we saw in Burning Steppes or Hellfire Peninsula. And there are rumors that we'll see a World Event go down before we actually go to Northrend, and as of right now, we don't know if there is going to be a testing phase for that or how long it might take. Last time around, too, you'll note, everyone got a free respec (and some even got two), and we haven't heard anything about that this time yet.

Of course, as always with Blizzard, time will tell. Given that we're expecting a November release, that would put a big 3.0 patch in October, and we already know Brewfest is going to have some changes then, so 3.0 could come in conjunction with those changes or around them. We'll have to wait and see.

Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Expansions, Talents, Wrath of the Lich King, Inscription

The Light and How to Swing It: Levels 51-60


This used to be the home stretch. In the old days, hitting level 51 was when players got their second wind after tiring out from the usually dreary 41 to 50. Now, however, it's just another bump in the road, with the endgame barely in sight. With Wrath of the Lich King looming over the horizon, the idea is to get through these levels as quickly as possible. Move along now, there's nothing to see here. Well, maybe a little, so we've cooked up this handy guide to see you through this not-quite-home-stretch.

If you've gotten your Paladin to this point, congratulations. Give yourself a pat on the back for sticking through with what is generally considered to be a boring challenging class. I got through my Paladin on a love-hate relationship. I love the class but I hate how slow everything can be. If you've gotten this far, you likely know what I mean. Seal, judge, seal, auto-attack, and alt-tab to read WoW Insider. If you're still deciding on whether to play the class, Elizabeth's guide from 1 to 20 is a good place to look. There's also the stretch from 21-40 for those of you who've decided to see if the free mount is worth it (I like mine a lot, thank you very much).

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Filed under: Paladin, Analysis / Opinion, Leveling, Guides, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

Report Card: Phase 4 daily quests

Phase 4 is now well underway, with about 50 servers having it unlocked according to us.gorgonnash.info at the time of this writing. There's still a few more things to unlock, but for the most part, the Sunwell Isle is complete, and what you see is what you get as far as resources and places to fight. So, once again, it is time to ask the question: How do these quests fit into your busy up-to-25-daily-quests-to-do lifestyle?

They fit pretty well, actually!

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Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Quests, Making money

Insider Trader: Jewelcrafting, the final stretch part 2


Last week, Insider Trader began the journey from 300 to 375 jewelcrafting skill. While we were able to avoid using recipes that required faction reputation or that had to be farmed, the cheapest methods to 375 from about 365 may require a bit more effort to obtain.

If you are like so many other craftsmen, stuck with 375 seeming far away and expensive, then carry on through the break to examine ways to not only maximize your skills, but to attempt to make a profit while doing so, rather than running on a loss.

Featuring several distinct ways to reach 375, you will find that you have many choices to suit your own needs, your guild's needs, and your server's market. In addition, I've put together some links for further reading that you should find helpful.

Each week, Insider Trader takes you behind the scenes of the bustling sub-culture of professional craftsmen, examining the profitable, the tragically lacking, and the methods behind the madness. For more guides to maximizing your chosen profession, check out the final stretches for Leatherworkers and Alchemists alike, as well as part one of Jewelcrafting's final stretch. For a complete list of profession guides, feel free to peruse our directory.

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Filed under: Insider Trader (Professions)

Phase 4 Dailies: Discovering Your Roots

The first daily quest of Phase 4 of the reclaiming of Quel'Danas is Discovering Your Roots. This quest begins at the newly unlocked Alchemy Vendor, Mar'nah. Of course, she has been unlocked, but not her stock. She claims to need a special reagents for that: Razorthorn Root. She says it's fairly difficult to harvest, but this quest shouldn't give anybody too much trouble.

After accepting this quest, fly out to Razorthorn Rise. This region is directly on the border between Terokkar Forest and Hellfire Peninsula, up in the mountains. If you cant find it, just look at the picture above.

This is similar to the quest I Was A Lot Of Things... from Shadowmoon Valley, in that you need to use some local beasts to dig up your plants for you. Luckily, you don't need to rely on the intelligence of some dumb pig that gets massacred by all of the nearby monsters and turns on you if you accidentally hit an AOE. You get to control the Ravager you'll use to dig up your five required Razorthorn Roots.

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Filed under: Patches, Quests, Guides, Making money

Insider Trader: Jewelcrafting, the final stretch part 1


Despite the overwhelming support from our readers during our brief but flower-tastic adventures as HKO-Insider, I will be unable to delve any further into the professions of the Flower Kingdom. That's okay; they were prejudiced against jewelcrafters anyway.

Two weeks ago, I posted Insider Trader's guide to the final stretch of Alchemy, and Runstadrey posted the following comment in response:

Excellent article, very in depth and thorough. I'm eagerly awaiting the same treatment for my stalled JC.

How could I resist a request preceded by flattery? I might have even produced this last week, had patch 2.4 not have dropped; after all, we can't have all of our jewelcrafters stalled mid-level. I am looking forward to reading the comment section for this guide, as the cheapest way on paper always varies because of unique server economies.

For the first part of the guide, which will show you how to reach 355 jewelcrafting in the cheapest manner possible, pass on through the break.

Each week, Insider Trader takes you behind the scenes of the bustling sub-culture of professional craftsmen, examining the profitable, the tragically lacking, and the methods behind the madness. For more guides to maximizing your chosen profession, check out the final stretches for Leatherworkers and Alchemists alike. For a complete list of profession guides, feel free to peruse our directory.

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Filed under: Items, How-tos, Jewelcrafting, Features, The Burning Crusade, Leveling, Guides, Insider Trader (Professions)

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