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WoW Meets League of Legends: Transmogrify your hunter into an AD carry

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As a raider, I've come to hate the MOBA genre over time. My guild was raiding Icecrown Citadel when Heroes of Newerth first came out, and within a few weeks, I quickly noticed the effect it had. Being in a progression guild, my guildmates were usually patient, focused, and committed when putting in the long hours needed to secure not just server firsts but the highest possible world rankings we could.

After HoN came out, however, it all changed. Core members of the raid were frequently dodging raid nights, and a few times the raid leader even called the night early when progression on a boss fight wasn't up to his satisfaction. The reason? He and half the guild were more interested in playing HoN than raiding.

In the past six months, I've noticed the same thing happening again with League of Legends -- only it's a hundred times worse, because it seems like everyone and their mother is playing this game. As such, I have developed a potential solution to dodgy guildmates. Using transmogrification, your guildies can now transform themselves into two of the most popular League of Legends characters, Graves and Ashe. Who knows? In doing so, maybe they'll actually work on last hitting the damned boss for a change.

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Filed under: Transmogrification

Rumble Between the Junglers: Questions about the DotA name

Pop law abounds in The Lawbringer, your weekly dose of WoW, the law, video games and the MMO genre. Mathew McCurley takes you through the world running parallel to the games we love and enjoy, full of rules, regulations, and esoteroic topics that slip through the cracks.

Behind the scenes, people are moving about, reading papers and commenting on filings and jockeying around the words of a paragraph to make it "feel" nicer. We don't like using the word "community," one might say, because it is a sympathetic word, and we do not need sympathy at this hearing. Thousands of dollars an hour are thrown at the problem for however long the team needs to work on it. I bet there were a few nice late-night sushi orders.

These are the stars of the show -- two copyright and trademark filing teams, potentially backed up by a litigation team, positioning over the DotA trademark ownership issue. Last week on The Lawbringer, I gave a summary of what is happening between Valve, Blizzard, Riot Games, and the DotA community, concluding that the fight over who owns the DotA name has to be fought now because of a fight brewing for years as the genre grew.

In order to expand our minds just a bit and start thinking like we want to understand the problem, we need to build a framework around the DotA issue with questions about what this is all about. Let's boil the issues down to simple questions.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Lawbringer

Jokes and songs decorate the WoW community

We get a lot of musical submissions and comedy bits sent to WoW Moviewatch. For better or for worse, we can't always run them. Moviewatch usually needs an animated movie or live-action narration to really work. It's a rough guideline, but it's been a consistent one for years.

Of course, we see some awesome stuff that deserves its own spotlight. These are songs, comedy routines, and moments of sheer awesome that you shouldn't miss. It's up to you to decide whether they're good, of course, but that's what makes it a community effort.

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Filed under: WoW Moviewatch

Rumble Between the Junglers: How the DotA fight began

Pop law abounds in The Lawbringer, your weekly dose of WoW, the law, video games and the MMO genre. Mathew McCurley takes you through the world running parallel to the games we love and enjoy, full of rules, regulations, and esoteroic topics that slip through the cracks.

Defense of the Ancients is a genre all unique to itself. Sure, the concepts are not brand new and the bulk of the original game was created using the Warcraft III World Editor, but the lasting appeal and standing reverence of the DotA genre continues today and shows no sign of slowing down. Part tower defense, part real-time strategy unit movement, this game type has experienced astounding growth all over the world over the last decade. As the genre grows, Defense of the Ancients-style games, or MOBAs (multiplayer online battle arenas), or ARTS (action real-time strategy), or... wait... what are we calling this genre?

My initial reaction to the entire naming fiasco was wonderfully summed up by Joystiq's own JC Fletcher: "Which giant company has the rights to the fan-created, community-promoted word 'Dota?'" He's right to be cynical -- justice will be meted out over a word that was born in the Blizzard maps community because of the actions of two super-huge gaming companies. That's not all there is to the story, however.

Therein lies the crux of the hot topic of the day -- Blizzard has finally thrown in its opposition of Valve's attempt to trademark the name Dota for its upcoming release of DOTA 2, a literal successor to the original DotA throne. The problem is that there are a whole bunch more facts, people, and anecdotes in this story than most people know.

I wrote a short post on the Dota trademark issue a few days ago that served as the basic of basics, what the news was about. Here's the short version: Valve is attempting to trademark a name that many gamers (and companies) consider to be a general term for the genre rather than the proper name for the game that spawned the genre. Hell, it could be both.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Lawbringer

Why you might like Blizzard DOTA

Fans of Defense of the Ancients, the immensely popular Warcraft III mod that spawned an entirely new genre of gaming, are already conditioned to love Blizzard DOTA. I got to play it this week at BlizzCon 2011 and had a great time getting into the very familiar world. However, many Blizzard fans are not DOTA enthusiasts or even privy to the genre itself. WoW players may not really understand what this Blizzard offering is about or even why they should be interested. Warcraft fan-favorite characters Thrall and Arthas are making appearance in Blizzard DOTA, which means gamers who have ever wanted to pit these monolithic figures against other Blizzard staple characters will get the chance. Here's what you need to know about Blizzard DOTA and why you just might like playing as one of your favorite WoW personalities.

Defense of the Ancients was originally a Warcraft III mod that became so incredibly popular that it spawned the genre know known as MOBA (multiplayer online battle arena) or ARTS (action real-time strategy), depending on who you ask. The game consists of three paths that connect two bases with destructible buildings and towers along the path routes. Waves of minions or creeps, NPC characters that spawn endlessly from both bases, meet in the middle of these lanes to do battle. You control a powerful hero who levels up, gains skills and abilities, and can purchase items from a shop. Your goal is to fight these minions and enemy players, destroy the enemy towers and buildings, and win the game.

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Filed under: Blizzard, BlizzCon

The Lawbringer: What WoW can learn from other microtransaction models, part 2

Pop law abounds in The Lawbringer, your weekly dose of WoW, the law, video games and the MMO genre. Mathew McCurley takes you through the world running parallel to the games we love and enjoy, full of rules, regulations, pitfalls and traps. How about you hang out with us as we discuss some of the more esoteric aspects of the games we love to play?

Two weeks ago, The Lawbringer took a look at the EVE Online currency model, what happens when value is dictated by the players, and the successes and failures that Blizzard can learn from when moving forward the revenue model for WoW or any other secret MMOs in the pipe. This week, part 2 discusses the batch currency model, where players purchase one set of currency and earn another. While WoW is not likely to move to this type of currency in the near future, Diablo 3 has already embraced it with the real-money transaction auction house, which eschews a purchased currency for, well, currency.

The prime example in recent gaming history of the successful batch currency model is Riot Game's wonderful League of Legends. I've been a Defense of the Ancients fan since the early days of the mod, and the fact that such a simple concept has evolved to a genre in and of itself is remarkable. Combined with the fact that there are 15 million accounts, millions playing all over the world, and a ridiculously successful microtransaction model for customization and convenience items, League of Legends has got the world captivated. But why is World of Warcraft not something that could benefit from selling its own currency, or, rather, why would Blizzard never let it happen? Let's find out.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Lawbringer

The Daily Quest: Lulz are the best medicine

Sylvanas the puppy has no time for games
Here at WoW.com, we're on a Daily Quest (which we try to do every day, honest) to bring you interesting, informative and entertaining WoW-related links from around the blogosphere. Is there a story out there we ought to link or a blog we should be following? Just leave us a comment and you may see it here tomorrow! Take a look at the links below, and be sure to check out our WoW Resources Guide for more WoW-related sites.

It's midnight on a Tuesday and, for many of us, servers are still offline. The woe! The agony! The never-ending boredom! So what's the cure? I propose a steady diet of interesting WoW blogs (back issues of The Daily Quest and the forums on Blog Azeroth are a great place to find them) -- today we'll specifically look at a selection from the lighter side of the blogosphere. They do say laughter is the best medicine, and when you're trying to treat boredom, that's probably right. (And before you have a chance to comment -- yes, some of these links are old. I know! But we haven't linked them before and I happen to think they're rather good.)
Still in need of a good laugh? You might try some lolcats or loldogs -- or share your favorite downtime lulz in the comments.

Filed under: The Daily Quest

Drama Mamas: When the game is no laughing matter

Drama Mamas Lisa Poisso and Robin Torres are experienced WoW players 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 checkout lane next to the candy, neither do we want you to become known as That Guy on your server. We're taking your questions at DramaMamas (at) WoW (dot) com.

Text communication is a touchy creature. The simplest of situations can spiral out of control in the space of a single chat pane, when players blunder along without considering the disparity between the words they've actually typed versus the message they intended to communicate. We all know how easily humor (and especially sarcasm) can fall flat on the internet. Emotes and the oh-so-snappy "LOL" seem especially prone to offending others who aren't on the same wavelength. Disaster strikes when players stop reading and start reading into what others say.

This week, we'll help several players who find themselves caught up in a web of pride, honor and misrepresented intentions -- all over a loot situation that would have been simple to resolve with clear communication.

Dear Drama Mamas, As a priestess who is devoted to the Light, I follow a flock where I make sure that everyone is happy and content. A few moons ago, I had gone on an adventure with several of the flock to the Halls of Stone, where we faced off against the Titan's creations and helped Brann Bronzebeard find out about the mystery of the dwarves. When we had finally retaken the Forge of Wills, we had found a weapon in possession of Sjonnir the Ironshaper, The Fleshshaper. Oh, what joy our rogue companion felt when we had finally gotten the weapon for him. Alas, that joy was suddenly shattered, as the other priest of our troupe had rolled his need dice accidentally. Our companion rogue burst into a fury like Ragnaros the Firelord, spewing out his frustration upon our dear priest, who had simply laughed off the whole affair.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Drama Mamas

The Daily Quest: Finally the weekend!

Here at WoW.com we're on a Daily Quest (which we try to do every day, honest) to bring you interesting, informative and entertaining WoW-related links from around the blogosphere. Is there a story out there we ought to link or a blog we should be following? Just leave us a comment and you may see it here tomorrow! Take a look at the links below, and be sure to check out our WoW Resources Guide for more WoW related sites.

It's the weekend! That time when we aren't shackled by workday worries and can kick back, relax, and half some fun. To further this purpose, some posts from the WoW blogosphere in the past week (or so) that have made me laugh -- and perhaps they'll make you laugh, too.

Filed under: The Daily Quest

The Daily Quest: More lulz



We here at WoW.com are on a Daily Quest to bring you interesting, informative and entertaining WoW-related links from around the blogosphere. Is there a story out there we ought to link or a blog we ought to follow? Just leave us a comment and you may see it here tomorrow!

Though not technically WoW-related, before we start today's TDQ, I'd like to be sure that all of the Blizzard-philes in the audience are aware that the StarCraft II beta test has begun. That's exciting, right? Right?

Well, fine -- let's migrate away from scifi and back to fantasy. We're half-way through the week and though I can't speak for everyone, to me it feels like a good time for some lulz to push the doldrums away. Never fear, everyone -- we're on the downhill portion of the week and the weekend will be here before you know it. In the meantime, let's enjoy a laugh or two provided by some of our favorite blogs. Too much silly, not enough content? Don't worry -- we'll be back tomorrow with links to some of the latest thoughts and comments on ICC.

Filed under: The Daily Quest

TurpsterVision: Happy Birthday.net


We can't believe it either – Turpster has been let loose on WoW.com to bring you videos from in and around the World of Warcraft! You've heard him on the WoW Insider Show, and now see him on TurpsterVision right here on WoW.com.


Happy Labor Day everyone! But more importantly, Happy Birthday to me! Today is my favorite day of the year for obvious reasons but it could also be your favorite day of the year too thanks to my super-awesome-grunty-birthday-giveaway! All you have to do is to follow me on Twitter and sending me a 'Happy Birthday' tweet (Or anything you like, but it's my birthday - Did I mention it's my birthday?) The winner will be selected after 12am Wednesday and notified via a Direct Message on Twitter so make sure to get your tweet in before then.

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Filed under: How-tos, Contests, TurpsterVision

TurpsterVision: Northrend Children's Week

We can't believe it either – Turpster has been let loose on WoW.com to bring you videos from in and around the World of Warcraft! You've heard him on the WoW Insider Show, and now see him on TurpsterVision right here on WoW.com.

First up a bit of housekeeping; thanks to all of you who took part in last week's contest -- over 500 of you! A winner has been chosen via the highly technical method of a /random in-game roll. Sorry to the others of you who didn't win this time, but who knows, maybe in the future we'll have another giveaway on TurpsterVision!

This week we take a trip on the PTR and experience the new Northrend Children's Week, doing the impossible and completing both sides of the event to show you what is on offer. Lesley Smith posted about the event before and we even put up a handy gallery if you would like to take a closer look at some of the quest text.

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Filed under: Walkthroughs, Humor, Guides, TurpsterVision

TurpsterVision: FigurePrints review

Turpster finds love in a 6 Inch Kungen
We can't believe it either – Turpster has been let loose on WoW.com to bring you videos from in and around the World of Warcraft! You've heard him on The WoW Insider Show now see him on TurpsterVision right here on WoW.com

This past week I undertook an epic unveiling of not so epic proportions in opening up my very own FigurePrint. Fortunately for you, the lucky viewer, I've captured this live on video -- a first encounter of the most awesome kind -- which can be found below the break!

The first thing that struck me upon opening the package was the weight of it all; the dome is real glass and is a fantastic way to display your character, keeping them free from dust and many other household evils that lurk outside of Azeroth. The reason I would want to go for a FigurePrint would be to immortalize my character, preserving the culmination of four and a half years hard gaming, and this extra layer of protection allows that to happen. It does however present a barrier, much like we have when playing the game, where we can't touch our character (This statement takes on a whole different meaning with some of Night Elf female mailbox dancers out there) but obviously it serves the purpose of protecting the FigurePrint so I guess I can let it slide.

Click on past the break to catch the video and check out the gallery getting up close and personal with FigurePrints!

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Filed under: Features, Humor, Guides, TurpsterVision

WoW Moviewatch: World of Warcraft: Lost Within


Warning: Mild cursing at the end.

Do you remember BroncoTV? They're the same guys who created Who's the Tank? Michael Schroeder dropped your intrepid Moviewatch team a note to let us know they've released a new video -- World of Warcraft: Lost Within. To sum up the plot, a WoW player finds himself transported inside the game. He must quest, grow, and ding, all en route to rescue his princess.

It's definitely a WoW vs. reality theme. The gags are suitably funny, and I found the acting to be over-the-top in the right places. (The gag at the end worked for me, I think in part because I knew it was coming. C'mon, who hasn't tried to whack someone with a plastic sword, only to be sorely disappointed with the effect?)

I really liked the WoW interface laying over top of Live Action acting. It gave a neat surreality to the comedy, and kept me firmly rooted in the escapist joke. Of course, if there's a part two, it'd be neat to see some UI Mods and such start making appearance. (Maybe an Omen Kiss meter or something.)

If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

Previously on Moviewatch ..

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Machinima, WoW Moviewatch

WoW Moviewatch: Leeroy 4 - The Wailing Caverns



Some movies are created using machinima -- finely honed in-game graphics, tuned to tell the author's story with sizzling detail. Others are creating using more traditional media, like hand-drawn art. And some, like Leeroy 4 - The Wailing Caverns, are created in Live Action, using nothing more than a pure sense of fun and obvious love of the game. It's the creation of Herculean Productions, and I've rarely had so much fun with a fan film.

The acting is over-the-top, scene chewing goodness. I like to think that even William Shatner would be proud of these boys. The story is simple enough to support this kind of shenanigan performance. In a quick summary, Leeroy is putting together a group to go to the Wailing Caverns. This is the LFG phase of that endeavour.

The costumes hit the right tone, in my opinion. If the clothes had been much fancier, then they'd be calling into the question the genre of the piece. This isn't meant to be high, Shakespearean art. It's supposed to be funny and tongue-in-cheek. You're not supposed to be gauging things like production values; you're supposed to be having the same kind of fun the actors are having.

My hat's off to Leeroy. This was great. Click here to go check it out yourself.

If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

Previously on Moviewatch ..

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, WoW Moviewatch

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