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Posts with tag kael-thas

I won't cry for you, Garrosh Hellscream

Garrosh Hellscream
We stand on the edge of patch 5.4 -- Orgrimmar is about to be invaded, and Garrosh Hellscream is about to be dethroned and likely killed. The decision to make a playable faction's leader the end boss of an expansion is a pretty surprising one, and as is to be expected, has been met with mixed feelings from many among the player base, myself included. I admit, Garrosh holds a very special place in my heart. Back at the end of 2009, Blizzard called me up and asked if I would be willing to write his leader story, to hopefully give some more depth to a character who was at the time much maligned. The prospect was incredibly daunting, and I was terrified, but keen for a challenge, I agreed.

As often happens when you spend enough time getting into the head of a character or two (or more), that fictional person begins to grow on you. When I started Heart of War I will admit I had little love for the younger Hellscream. I thought him brash, full of himself, and woefully ignorant of Azeroth. But I went into the story production armed with the following philosophy: everyone is the protagonist of their own story. As such, I was determined to give Garrosh, as my Australian husband sometimes quips, a fair shake of the sauce bottle.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Burning Crusade, Lore, Mists of Pandaria

Lor'themar Theron: In the Shadow of the Sun chronicles blood elven leader's troubles

While it's not a brand new leader short story, Lor'themar Theron, Regent Lord of Quel'thalas, gets the new-to-you treatment with Sarah Pine's wonderful story, In the Shadow of the Sun. In the Shadow of the Sun was the 2008 winner in the Blizzard Global Creative Writing Contest and chronicles the leadership of Lor'themar after The Burning Crusade, the rejuvenation of the Sunwell, and the preparations for war against Arthas in Northrend. After fighting a devastating battle at the Sunwell Plateau, Lor'themar must meet the challenges of peace time and war, leading his people immediately after their great leader has been corrupted and lost.

Check out the full story over at the Blizzard community website. If you haven't yet read this one, it's definitely one of the best.

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Know Your Lore: Current Alliance politics -- the Draenei

The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how, but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.

Well, after last weeks extensive look into dwarven politics we're closing in on finishing off the Alliance. So far we've seen the night elves, the gnomes, and the dwarves – today we'll take a brief look at the Alliance race that hasn't had much to say since Burning Crusade: the Draenei.

Luckily Matthew Rossi has already written up an excellent post on the history of the draenei and their otherworldly origins. This post explains the corruption of the eredar at the hands of Sargeras, and the lone faction of eredar that escaped to become what we know as the draenei today. It's only been a couple of years at best from a timeline standpoint since the blue-skinned aliens made a smashing debut on Azeroth, yet they've been largely absent from the war efforts in Northrend -- what's left for the draenei, and what does their future with the Alliance hold?

The draenei race is quite possibly the most peaceful race the Alliance has on their side. While the other races of the Alliance are prone to conflicts and struggles over petty disagreements, the draenei only seem to strike out in defense. Their arrival on Azeroth wasn't pretty -- they ended up tearing up the landscape over on Azuremyst and Bloodmyst isles. While they were of course concerned about their fellow survivors, they were just as concerned with what they'd done to the land and the creatures on it -- as a society concerned with not only the Light of the naaru, but the elements of shamanism, the last thing they wanted to do was wreak havoc on a new world, especially since they'd just left a dying world behind.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

WoW Moviewatch: Salad Elf

Salads are good, especially with Hawaiian Pizzas. I prefer a caesar salad, but a strange number of people in my family are into the blue cheese junk. Yuck.

Today's movie, Salad Elf by Irdeen, is about a Night Elf with a gentler side to himself.

I enjoyed the voice over in it, it had a certain children's tale quality to it. Mother goose and all that. The actual machinima was done well enough. Irdeen mentions that this was a BlizzCon submission that didn't make it, and I suspect that the only reason it didn't get shown at BlizzCon was that the competition was quite good this year - the bar is getting set higher and higher for WoW machinima.

Now... off to make a salad for lunch. Eat that Kael'thas.

Interested in the wide world of machinima? We have new movies every weekday here on WoW Moviewatch! Have suggestions for machinima we ought to feature? Toss us an e-mail at machinima AT wow DOT com.


Filed under: WoW Moviewatch

Blizzard announces new Dance Battle System (that isn't real)

Blizzard never fails to exceed expectations on April Fool's Day -- in the EU, they reported on a brand new Pimp My Mount option (featuring tiger-mounted gatling guns), over on the forums, they RP'd the place up a bit, and now on the North American page, they've announced the game's newest feature: a Dance Battle system. They say that sometime soon in the game (that is, if this wasn't April 1st), players will be able to have dance-offs around the world, culminating in a huge dance tournament to take place in Kael'thas quarters in Tempest Keep. Wait, isn't that guy dead? Players will be able to form crews, which can then battle each other using player controlled dance moves and a vehicle-like interface.

Of course, none of it is true, which is an extra poke in the heart to fans who really are waiting for the new dance system. We doubt it'll have a battle component, but the interface and the rewards are pretty intriguing -- so close to what we're really hoping for, and yet so far. And yes Blizzard, nice Lonely Island joke hidden in there. It was, in fact, a horror film.

There's even a trailer for "Azeroth's Best Dance Crew (hosted by Acy Slater)," though we looked closely and didn't see any really new dance moves in there, either. But it's cute, and (maybe this is what Blizzard intended) only whets our appetite for the real new dances, supposedly still coming soon.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Blizzard, PvP, Humor, Screenshots

A world without Varimathras

It was probably the least exciting thing to go down during the Wrathgate questline (Wrynn FTW, no?), and I've only played Alliance during Wrath, so I haven't really realized it until now: Varimathras is no longer in the game. He was always my favorite faction leader (even though he wasn't actually the Undead faction leader, so to speak) -- I loved his "You think you can match the might of a dreadlord?" taunt, his story (he always hinted that the Forsaken, a threat within the ranks of the Horde, might have a threat within their own ranks), and his demonic look. And now, after the Battle for the Undercity, he's gone.

Fortunately, this is World of Warcraft, and no one in Warcraft really ever stays completely dead -- just ask Kael'thas. But as a more pressing concern, players are currently wondering how they'll be able to do Varimathras' quests (for the Loremaster achievement) with him no longer hanging around the Undercity. New Blue poster Ancilorn says not to worry -- they'll come up with a way for those who can't see Varimathras to do the quests associated with him. Or, and probably more likely, they'll just take them out of the Loremaster requirements.

But a moment of silence, please, for one of my favorite lore figures, Varimathras. He was always on the winning side. Except for, you know, that one time right at the end.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Blizzard, Quests, Lore, NPCs

Kael'thas dropped with just 12 people


Personally, I think we've already seen proof of just how easy the endgame is now, but I've never done the Kael fight, so maybe this is even more of a feat. Dissonance on Alleria finished off Kael'thas Sunstrider (the 25-man version, not the 5-man fight in Magisters' Terrace) with just twelve people. Looks like kiting was a big technique, but otherwise, just seems like they were able to overpower everything else in the fight. They actually tried it with 10, they say (they dropped Al'ar, Void Reaver, and Solarian with 10 the week before), but the MCs in Phase 4 were a bit much, so they pulled in two more.

This is a Sunwell guild, so they've got pretty much the best gear you can walk around with in the game, and as we've said here before, these instances really got nerfed twice: once when Blizzard nerfed the actual bosses' HP and damage, and a second time when Blizz gave us all the 51-point talents before the expansion.

But it's definitely an achievement, toppling a 25-man boss with less than half the required group. Oh, how the mighty have fallen, sure, but don't fret, raiders seeking a real challenge -- we're sure Blizzard will make up the difficulty when we all step into the new endgame in Northrend.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Instances, Raiding, Bosses

Christie Golden talks about Arthas, Rise of the Lich King

Our friend Medievaldragon (of Blizzplanet, who's now posting occasionally over on World of War) got a chance to talk to author Christie Golden at BlizzCon last weekend. She's working on a book about Arthas (which has a title now: "Rise of the Lich King"), and she chatted with MD about what kind of lore fun is going to be in those pages.

The book starts with Arthas as a ten-year-old prince, and then obviously follows his path through what we saw in Warcraft III, including all of that bad business at Quel'Thalas, and Arthas' past with Jaina and Kael'thas (you don't think Blizzard would bring KT back again in WotLK, do you?). Golden promises some good looks as the High Elves, too -- "two very pivotal characters are elven," she says. Including Sylvanas? We can only hope.

The book's due out in April, sounds like it'll be a good read, for Arthas fans especially.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Lore, BlizzCon, Wrath of the Lich King

Guildwatch: Going too far


The short version of the tells above: Renzor tried to start some drama by posting a vent recording on the forums, and when Avasa (who took the screenshot) posted against him, Renzor threatens to kick him (and, as you can see, claims Avasa "likes to create drama" when Renzor was the one who posted the vent recording). Click the image above to see the uncut convo (with some not so SFW language), and click the link below to check out the whole story, along with all of the other drama (including a bit of bank drama that will surprise you) from this week's GW.

And if you've got drama, downed, or recruiting news from your own guild or someone else's, send it along to wowguildwatch@gmail.com. Your tips keep this thing running, so thanks in advance.

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Filed under: Guilds, Humor, Raiding, Guildwatch, Alts

Why PvE has been, and always will be, the only real game


World of Warcraft has two distinctly different types of play: Player versus Environment and Player versus Player. The styles of play are dramatically different and there are few, if any, skills that cross over from one style to the other. WoW started out as a PvE game, adding in PvP content as the player base expanded. And despite the numerous PvP fanbois out there, the real game in WoW will always remain the PvE game.

There are a few reasons why I think this. First and foremost, you cannot progress in PvP without first completing a large potion of the PvE content. You start out at level 1 and progress up to level 70. You don't level up by PvPing against one another. You level up by fighting against the environment. Put simply, without the PvE there would be no PvP.

Secondly, PvP is an addition to the game. If you remove PvP from the game entirely, the game itself would not fundamentally change. However if you remove the PvE elements, the game would be nothing like it is. Everything would just exist like the Arena Tournament server. That might be fine for some people, and this is evident in the success of the Arena Tournament server. Even I enjoy spending a couple hours a week on there, but by no means would I want to just exist on a server where the only thing to do is kill one another.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, PvP

Why Mount Hyjal and Black Temple attunements still matter

The dust has settled on most of the servers, and the Fury of the Sunwell has been a success across the board. One of the lingering issues however is attunement. It has been noted before that Onyxia is now the hardest attunement in the game. This has occurred with the removal of the Karazhan, Black Temple, and Mount Hyjal attunements. However this creates a false impression that these instances are no longer worthy of attunements, and thus these quests are no longer worthy of the care and time that's necessary to push forward into them.

You want to get your Vashj and Kael vials, you want to complete your Mount Hyjal attunement, and you want to complete your Black Temple attunement. If you're in a guild that isn't running those instances anymore and is focusing squarely on the Tier 6 content, then you still want to go back and get the attunements.

Why?

I'm glad you asked.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Instances, Raiding

Kael'thas in two places at once

This thread over on the forums starts off a little silly (it's a complaint about Kael'thas being both in Tempest Keep and Magisters' Terrace at the same time), but later on gets into some really interesting commentary and thinking about just how the lore and story in this game works. Obviously, there are no problems with having Kael in two places at once (as Bornakk says with an epic burn, a character can be alive on page 1 and dead on page 10 at the same time), but it's interesting that that's not always what happens in the game. Griftah, for example, was never in two places at once, and neither was Hemet Nesingwary -- both of those characters had progressive lore storylines. But Kael, like Thrall, has a storyline that evolves as a character moves forward in their own storyline, and so Blizzard has placed him in two different places at once, and asked players to move their own characters to see the storyline in order.

Interesting stuff. Scuzz makes a particularly interesting point in the thread -- the World of Warcraft really does revolve around player characters, not NPCs. If you discover through quests that Onyxia is actually pretending to be a woman in Stormwind, all of the NPCs your character meets will be shocked. It's a sign of Blizzard's talent at game creation that something can be both known by most players and discovered by one player almost every single day.

Of course there's no problem with Kael being in two places -- I would rather have my character move through a changing world than have Blizzard worry about making sure "reality" was kept correctly. But it's an interesting line being walked very well -- if you do the two instances in order, you get a much better story than if we were simply fighting a generic third boss in Magisters' Terrace.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Blizzard, Quests, Lore, Bosses, NPCs

How many outfits do you have?


Alex recently talked about the lack of bag space for the hybrid class. This is quite true for them, as they have a hard time with the near infinite amount of bag space that is demanded of them. However looking at the non-hybrid classes, in particular a warrior, it can be seen that they too have their own issue of sorts. For an end game tank, it becomes less of an issue of actual bag space, and more of an issue of the limitless combinations of gear.

Most tanks swear by outfitter – a tool that allows you to quickly change around pre-saved outfits. For instance, say I'm going to be tanking the nature phase of Hydross. Before even setting foot in SSC, I would have spent an hour or so making sure I had all the necessary gear, stats, and configurations that Hydross requires. A good part of this time would be spent getting all those gearing changes into an easy to use outfitter profile – so I would just have to click one button to wear the gear.

Of course, that's resistant gear and it's expected that there'll have to be a bunch of switching of it. However, the gear switching doesn't end there.

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Filed under: Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Add-Ons

Around Azeroth: Pass the marshmallows


Kitara of the Kudzu guild on Underbog has a great story behind this campfire shot:

This is from our first kill of Kael'thas last night. One of the advisors, Capernian, basically can't be melee'd; it is up to the ranged DPS classes to bring her down. So while this advisor is up in phase one, the melee group had a little pow-wow off in the corner.

Do you have any unusual World of Warcraft images that are just collecting dust in your screenshots folder? Because we'd love to see it on Around Azeroth! Sharing your screenshot is as simple as e-mailing aroundazeroth@wow.com with a copy of your shot and a brief explanation of the scene. You could be featured here next!

Remember to include your player name, server and/or guild if you want it mentioned. We prefer full screen shots without the UI showing. And please, no more sunsets. This means you. I'm not kidding, yours is not the exception. No, really. Sigh.

Filed under: Screenshots, Raiding, Around Azeroth, Galleries

Guildwatch: No drama here


Isn't it ironic that the guilds who always brag they don't have drama... seem to have drama? Today we've got a great story of drama, and the best thing about it is that the guild who went through it.. actually called themselves No Drama. Trust us -- Murphy wasn't kidding around.

For more stories of drama, downed and recruiting news from guilds all over the realms, just click the link below. We've got a nice full slate of news this week, so jump right in and start pulling trash, even if you don't have a full raid yet. Enjoy.

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Filed under: Guilds, Raiding, Guildwatch, Bosses

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