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Posts with tag in-game-pets

Wind Rider Cub and Gryphon Hatchling image gallery

Though it took longer than expected to receive them and FedEx decided it was a wise idea to throw them into the mound of snow next to my well-shoveled porch rather than placing them on the porch or (gasp!) ringing the doorbell so I could accept them myself, my house now has two new guests. The Gryphon Hatchling and Winder Rider plushies now have resting places atop my significant other's desk, where they stand vigilant to inflict cuteness on whoever may need it. In the gallery at the bottom of this post, you'll find a number of pictures of them, held by my little sister because there simply wasn't enough cute in the plushies alone.

Like most licensed Blizzard products, these plushies are very high quality. I was almost surprised by the amount of work put into the little details. The necklaces (bibs? zoo-tabards?) worn by the plushies are embroidered. They're not screen-printed felt or anything like that, so I don't expect they'll come apart anytime soon. The plushies also shipped in individual drawstring bags to carry and store them in, so they're not exposed to the elements when you inevitably shove them in your closet because really, are you going to keep these on display forever? Probably not!

I do still think that $25 price tag for a stuffed animal is incredibly steep, but considering what people were willing to pay for in-game pets alone, it's not anymore expensive than what you would usually pay for a Blizzard product. Keep an eye on the site, because we might have a pair of these to give away in the coming weeks.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

Blizzard pet store now regional

In a short (but not necessarily sweet) announcement, Zarhym announced on the official forums that the recently opened Blizzard pet store are now regional. This means that pets purchased from, say, the European store can only be redeemed on European World of Warcraft accounts. He doesn't go into detail other than to say that pets that have already been purchased from one region and redeemed in another region are not affected by this change.

While it's a curious move on the surface, it effectively restricts players from Europe purchasing their Pandaren Monk and Lil' K.T. from the US store where the pets are cheaper at $10 compared to €10 or £10 in the EU (roughly $15). Interestingly enough, the pets are priced at ₩12,000 in the Korean version of the store, which is about the same price as in the US ($10.3). It's unclear why the European version of the pets -- along with a few other Blizzard store items -- are more expensive, a fact that makes Turpster huff and puff and blow Azerothian houses down.

Obvious business reasons aside, it also creates a minor inconvenience for people who would like to give the pets as gifts to players in other regions. However, considering that many vanity pet codes have been regional in the past, such as those given away during Blizzard special events, it's not a surprising move. Then again, this whole foray into microtransactions was a bit of a surprise, so we've learned to never underestimate those folks from Irvine.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Europe

A WoW player's guide to microtransactions

Well Blizzard has finally done it. After charging only for out-of-game services like faction changes and character customization, with the release of in-game pets on the Blizzard store, they've finally moved on to selling virtual items for real money. And there's a word, dirty in the mouths of some, that's floating around that some of you may not have heard or understood before: microtransactions. We wouldn't blame you -- some of our own staff didn't even know what they were just a little while ago. But with the decision to sell in-game items for straight cash, Blizzard has entered the fascinating and treacherous world of microtransactions. And if you're going to follow them off into this world, you might as well at least know what they're all about.

And so, we're here to help. Whether you've never heard of microtransactions before, you're convinced that they're the devil and that Blizzard has grown too greedy for their own good, or you can't wait to open up your wallet and get a Pandaren Monk to follow you around, let's take a second and look at the history of the microtransaction model, what it means that Blizzard made this decision, and what might happen to the game in the future.

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Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Economy, Making money

Hands on with the Dell XPS WoW laptop

A week ago, Dell shipped me one of their special edition World of Warcraft XPS M1730 Notebooks. The very same notebook that is going on sale today to the public. They asked me to take it for a spin and let you, gentle readers, know what I think. Then they asked me to send it back to them when I was done. Buahahaha! Send it back? That's rich. Oh, there's lawyers? Ah, damn.

First, I should let you know that I'm not a tech head, so I leave the number-crunching analysis to Engadget. But I do love me some World of Warcraft. And I can tell you my impressions of the new system and the goodies that came with it.

So join me on a magical, mystery tour that started with a box on my doorstep.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, News items

Two more big announcements from Dell and WoW Insider

You've probably already read the big news. Dell has the ultimate WoW gaming laptop up for sale next week (earlier for those who signed up through their banner campaign.) Dell has two more surprises up their sleeve.

First, they sent us one for review. I received my Dell XPS 1730 World of Warcraft Edition laptop and goodie bundle yesterday. I will be putting it through the paces this week and reporting on it here on WoW Insider.

Second, Dell is providing us with one of these bad boys with all the WoW extras that go with it to give away to you, faithful readers. That's right: Dell and WoW Insider are giving away a $5k+ gaming laptop. Details will be announced soon.

Until then, check out the gallery below and read more details on the special edition laptop after the jump!

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Filed under: Blizzard, News items

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