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Addon Spotlight: Adding on to the Blizzard Raid Frames

Each week, WoW Insider's Mathew McCurley brings you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which focuses on the backbone of the WoW gameplay experience: the user interface. Everything from bags to bars, buttons to DPS meters and beyond -- your addons folder will never be the same.

One of the great joys of writing Addon Spotlight is watching the evolution of addons and their relationship to World of Warcraft over time and how the effectiveness and usefulness of certain addons wanes and waxes like the phases of the moon. Blizzard's new raid frames have not replaced my own custom job, but they have been getting progressively closer to a complete package, as I discussed only a few weeks ago. But there are ways, friends, of adding on to even the Blizzard default raid frame setup to give them just a bit more substance.

Today, I've got three little additions to the default Blizzard raid frames that can help you with targets, marks, and debuffs. If you like options, these addons will add a ton of them to the Blizzard standard setup, making the entire package look a little more like Grid. So sit back, relax, and check out these new additions to the Blizzard default raid frames.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, AddOn Spotlight

Ask WoW Insider: Is PvP gear still worth it?

Here's a good question from our email (it's ask at, if you've got a question for Ask WoW Insider). It's about PvP gear, and what to do about it in the few weeks left until the Wrath launch. We know now that Honor and marks are not getting wiped for sure, so Treecow wants to know what to do:

My question is this, now that Wrath will be out in 6 weeks or so, does it really pay to get the S2 gear? Is it worth getting, even if it's going to be replaced within the first couple levels in Northrend, just to make those couple of levels easier? Or should I keep running quests and dailies? Or is there something else I should be doing that I haven't even thought about?

70 Druid on Thrall

If you ask me, dailies are the way to go at this point (and if you haven't gotten your rep up in some factions, dailies should help there, too), simply because gear will get quickly replaced and gold will always be useful. Not to mention that there are battleground dailies to do every day if BGs are what you'd rather play.

But on the other hand, I'm mostly a PvE-er, and who knows -- doing the PvP to buy PvP gear could be worth it in the long run. You might even get more gold out of selling items you'd normally be equipping in Wrath. Readers, what do you say to Treecow?

Previously on Ask WoW Insider...

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, PvP, Ask WoW Insider, Making money, Battlegrounds

Breakfast Topic: Honorary wipe

Well so much for the honor wipe. As you can already see from the comments on that post, players have all kinds of opinions about this -- some believe that Blizzard should have gone through with the wipe, giving everyone a clean slate as the expansion started. Some players disagree, saying that honor is honor -- if you earned it, you should keep it. Some players are unhappy that the prices for level 80 items are going to be raised as part of the non-wipe, leaving new players in the dust. And even other players are just angry because they listened to Blizzard, and already spent the honor they thought they were losing anyway.

So the question this morning isn't how you feel about the Honor non-wipe, since odds are you've already expressed that. But it is: where do we go from here? Are you going to step up Honor farming in the hopes of picking up new, expensive items right away at level 80? Or are you just done with the system completely, and planning to worry about what's available at level 80 when you get there?

You should keep in mind that for all of the gnashing of teeth, we still don't know for sure how rewards will worth in Wrath -- Tigole has even said that tuning is still happening, and so any tweaks Blizzard may make might actually turn out to make the whole thing easier on everyone. But now that you know the Honor isn't going anywhere, what's your plan before the expansion?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, PvP, Breakfast Topics, Battlegrounds, Arena

WoW Insider Show back live tomorrow

Ok, people, it's time to get back on track. After a short vacation last week (we had to go prerecorded), the show is back live tomorrow afternoon at 3:30pm Eastern, and after a few week's absence, the inimitable Turpster is returning to the virtual airwaves with us. Amanda Dean will also be on, and planned topics of discussion include that whole Honor wipe deal (which some players aren't happy about), the ongoing Brewfest holiday (how are your tickets coming), and anything else new in the beta we'd like to talk about.

Additionally, thanks to listener Spacenerd, we'll have a giveaway -- if you want to pick up some extra special loot, make sure to tune into WoW Radio tomorrow afternoon at 3:30pm Eastern to listen to how it all will go down. And we'll be in IRC live as well, at in the #wowradio channel. Finally, if you'd like to email us questions, concerns, words or praise or just something silly, feel free: the email address is

Should be a great show tomorrow -- it'll be nice to get back into the vibe of things (and finally talk to Turpster again after so long), not to mention have a nice chat with all the IRC folks as well. Even if you've never heard the show live before, tomorrow would be a great day to listen in.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Podcasting, WoW Insider Business, Blizzard, Quests, WoW Insider Show

New items for old Honor

Vaneras on the EU forums has posted those "special" items we heard about yesterday -- the bad news of the Honor wipe before the expansion is tempered by the fact that Blizzard is giving us some more ways to spend that honor before it all goes away.

I've put all the items after the jump in case you can't reach the forums here during the day, but these items are about what you'd expect -- cloaks and trinkets, at or maybe slightly better than the gear you'll be picking up early on into Wrath of the Lich King. If you haven't ground out PvP gear yet (or grabbed some epics from the high-end raids), you may get a level or two out of these, but you'll definitely have replaced them by the time we all hit 80. There are no prices or timelines on when these items will be released, either -- we'd imagine that they'll come out with patch 3.0.2 (Vaneras says "the next content patch") and that the actual wipe will come with the Wrath release patch.

Additionally, gems obtained through Honor will go BoE (or at least not BoP) and will no longer be "Unique-equipped" after the patch, so you can nab some gems as well before the wipe shows up for your alts or other guildies. Nice of Blizzard to give us a few more ways to get rid of the honor (and personally, I think there are good reasons for the wipe anyway), but those who are really steaming about losing the honor they built up probably won't be completely satisfied by these items.

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Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, PvP, Wrath of the Lich King, Battlegrounds

Forum post of the day: Winning isn't everything

I love most of the battlegrounds. Oddly enough, even as Horde, Alterac Valley is my favorite. Warsong Gulch is the exception. Maybe because of it's small team size, it seems really difficult to get organized and the games drag out. Now I don't necessarily need honor from WSG, but I do need marks for some of my gear. Should I just go in with the intention of getting a single mark, offer no resistance to the opposing team, and collect my singular mark. That's not my style. I'm in it to win it like Yzerman.

Aparently not every feels the same as I do. Pigskin of Medivh is unimpressed with mark farming. Even if it's a premade losing team, there are still often folks who get pugged into their groups who can't do much alone when they lack the support of their team. She's hoping for a response from Blizzard.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Forums, Battlegrounds, Forum Post of the Day

Season 1 Prices revisited as items go on sale tomorrow

We heard a long time ago that Arena 1 sets would be purchaseable with battleground honor and marks, and it looks like tomorrow's the day-- all those marks and honor you've been saving up will be able to get you some Arena PvP gear.

We posted prices a while back as well, but just in case you missed them, here they are again, at Curse's website. The full list of prices is after the jump-- lots of people will probably be headed for the weapons, but make sure to bring lots of honor and marks. While the offhand weapons are the least pricey (at 9k honor), the marks are probably what will break people-- you need 20 Eye of the Storm marks for all the one-hand weapons, and 40 AB marks for the two handers. Librams, relics and totems are the cheapest-- only 8k honor and 10 EotS marks.

The full list is printed for your convenience after the break. Got honor? If you want to grab some of that season 1 gear tomorrow, you're gonna need it.

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Filed under: Patches, Items, Economy, PvP

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