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Posts with tag mists-of-pandaria

Did you miss in Pandaria?: The (other) Butcher

Transformed into Krastinov
The Diablo series has a boss called The Butcher who's been more prominent lately with his appearance in Diablo III. But let's not forget that WoW has its own. Doctor Theolen "The Butcher" Krastinov was a boss in the original version of Scholomance. Upon engaging him, he would let you know that "The doctor is in!" You had to kill him to summon the optional boss Kirtonos. Like many other bosses, he was removed from Scholomance during its revamp.

Or was he?

Now, Krastinov is actually a rare spawn that has a small chance to replace one of the trash packs following Rattlegore. He only spawns in the level 90 heroic version of Scholomance. Krastinov has the same abilities as his first incarnation: a bleed, a stun, and a self-Bloodlust effect.

He only has one item on his loot table, with a 100% chance to drop. Krastinov's Bag of Horrors is a transformation item that lets you sport the doctor's fashion, including his trademark bloody cleavers, for 10 minutes. It's a tribute to the quest item of the same name from classic WoW's Ghosts of Caer Darrow chain. We never knew exactly what was in that bag, and we never wanted to.

For you collectors out there, the bag has already been flagged as a toy in Warlords of Draenor.


Filed under: Mists of Pandaria

Warcraft wallpaper, costume, art, fan art and comic updates

It's been a while since we've seen any updates to the various galleries Blizzard has featured on the World of Warcraft site. Blizzard has just updated its costume and fan art galleries with a handful of new photos from various artists. The costumes are pretty clever, but my personal favorites have to be a really clever training dummy costume, and a checkered box that should be very familiar to anyone who has played on any of the beta servers over the years.

In addition to the costume and fan art galleries, there is a new community comic available in the comic gallery, as well as a new wallpaper featuring the Jade Forest rare, Martar the Not-So-Smart. And if that weren't enough, several new images of Mists of Pandaria concept art have also been added to the Blizzard art gallery. I do love the early hozen concept art, but I hope we get to see more of the concept art from Warlords, too. Check out Blizzard's official post for links to all of the new additions.


Filed under: Blizzard, Arts and Crafts

Did you miss in Pandaria?: Shado-Pan Geyser Gun

Geyser gun in action
The latest build of the Warlords beta shows a number of achievements for toy collecting. You can earn a "Robo-Gnomebulator" (whatever that is) when you amass 150 of them. For those dedicated collectors, one of the most obscure toys in Mists is the Shado-Pan Geyser Gun.

To earn it, you must return to the Throne of Thunder raid. You can queue for the Forgotten Depths section of ToT's LFR if you can't convince your guild to clear to Tortos. Once your LFR group has defeated Ji-Kun, you can return to the Tortos area by clicking on a feather and flying into the red portal above. Make sure you don't aggro any leftover trash on the way back!

The geysers in ToT have a hidden minigame. Standing on top of one gives you a stacking debuff called Spray Water. Continue riding the geysers until the debuff stacks to 250, which takes both practice and patience. There's no achievement for this, so look for the "new mail" icon instead. You'll receive a message in your mailbox from Taoshi of the Shado-Pan congratulating you on your "ninja-like geyser-jumping abilities." She includes the geyser gun as a reward. Now you can douse friend and foe alike in lukewarm water that smells strongly of Tortos.

If you want to be a really awesome person, you can earn the gun for several friends at once by allowing them to ride on your mount while you deal with those fickle geysers. Good luck!


Filed under: Mists of Pandaria

Did you miss in Pandaria?: Carefully packaged rodents

Deployed rodent crate
As we approach the end of Mists, you may have characters with a vast pile of Lion's Landing/Domination Point Commissions from patch 5.1's Krasarang war clogging up your bags. Temporary world PvP boosts probably aren't of much interest these days, so here is a great way to spend them that will give you a more permanent reward.

The Rodent Crate costs 2000 commissions. But what does it actually do? The tooltip doesn't specify.

Using it will spawn Sumprush Rodents for one hour that can be battled and captured by anyone wandering by. Like other battle pets, they have a chance to be rare when you engage them.

The crate is the only way to get this particular pet. If you haven't heard of these beaver-like rats, that may be because they are not part of the Pandaria Safari achievement. They have different abilities and colors than the similar Bucktooth Flapper from Jade Forest.

Be sure to tell your friends when you're releasing the rodents so everyone can get one. The actual crate is so cute and weird when you place it down, I hope it becomes a Toybox item someday.


Filed under: Mists of Pandaria

Did you miss in Pandaria?: Lost treasure of Old Man Thistle

Fighting Toxiclaw
As we reach the end of the Mists era, it's a great time to finish up some of the achievements and questlines we may have missed. Like the Pinch King, this questline is hidden. No marker indicates it. But you are given clues.

Once Fish Fellreed gets to know you better, she will tell you the story of Old Man Thistle, a farmer who found a secret cave full of treasure. It collapsed behind him after his mushan Bobo smashed through a wall, but he drew a map to its location. Unfortunately, the location of the map, like the cave, has been forgotten.

In order to start the questline, you need to be exalted with the Tillers faction and Best Friends with all of the Halfhill Market characters. You'll know you're done when the Friends on the Farm achievement pops up.

There's no quest for this, but you should head to Cattail Lake and hunt the Enormous Cattail Grouper. Be careful, though -- he's big enough to swallow you whole. (These groupers are also the target of the Gift for Haohan daily.) If you meet the requirements, the grouper will drop an Old Map and launch you on a brief but lucrative adventure.

Read more →

Filed under: Mists of Pandaria

Warlords of Draenor: Dog may be in our garrisons after all

It's no secret that I love Dog, the farm puppy I rescued from the fields of Halfhill in Mists of Pandaria. I've written about Dog on a couple of different occasions, because he was just a really cool and unique perk to leveling reputation with the Tillers. Does Dog do anything? No, not really -- he just hangs around on the farm, responds to a few different emotes, but he doesn't actively do anything to further the game. He's just Dog, defender of the farm house, digger of holes, and overall good boy.

It was with some concern that I wondered what Dog's fate would be when Warlords of Draenor hit -- I didn't like the idea of leaving the poor little guy behind. According to a recent tweet by Cory Stockton, that may not be a worry after all.


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Filed under: Warlords of Draenor

The End Comes At Last

So, with the news that we're finally going to get to see the cinematic and find out the release date for Warlords of Draenor one thing is clear. Mists of Pandaria finally has an ending.

It's been a long ride, this expansion. Longer than it should have been. I think that's an irrefutable statement, but for everyone there's a different threshold. Personally, I hit my fill of Mists of Pandaria a few months back. It wasn't due to a lack of quality, or any kind of discontent with the expansion's storyline, or some sort of knee jerk reaction to pandas. I liked the pandaren, I liked Pandaria, I liked the raids we got. No, for me it was simply long past its shelf life, a victim of its own success in pushing out patches faster during the expansion. I've felt for a while now that it would have been better for the game if they'd actually been a little slower with each patch - an extra month or so for each one to come out would have made this less a content drought and more a mere dry spell.

But at last, it's over. I'm not angry with Mists, exactly - it did a lot of really great things and accomplished what it set out to do. It gave us whole new places to go and explore and a new story that incorporated the new land we were exploring and the places we'd come from. I had fun playing it. I'm glad we'll soon get to go somewhere else, though. It's time to move on.

Filed under: Mists of Pandaria

WoW Archivist: More beta surprises

Sylvanas models through the years
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?

As the Warlords of Draenor beta rolls onward, Blizzard keeps managing to surprise us. Recently we've learned about a huge overhaul to guild systems, random upgrades for quest rewards, and an extra-awesome core hound mount.

In the last WoW Archivist column, we looked at the surprises from the original beta and the betas of The Burning Crusade and Wrath of the Lich King expansions. This time, we continue with Wrath and also look at the surprises during the Cataclysm and Mists of Pandaria betas.

(As before, I won't go into storyline surprises here. And I won't cover surprises announced at BlizzCon outside of a beta. BlizzCon already has its own feature for controversial surprises.)

Beta of the Lich King (continued)

Goodbye, night elf Sylvanas. Through vanilla and TBC, the Sylvanas model looked like a night elf rather than an undead high elf. With Sylvanas poised to play a big role in Northrend, Blizzard clearly needed to revamp her model. Players worried that they would have to look at the old night elf model through all her lore moments in Wrath.

A build in August 2008 gave her an initial makeover (middle image above) and lore-focused players breathed a sigh of relief. Clearly she still needed some work, but at least she wasn't a night elf anymore.

A later build in September gave her the fantastic model we see today. The same build also updated the models for Varian Wrynn and Alexstraza.

Read more →

Filed under: WoW Archivist

Bottom's Up for the continued tale of the Mists cinematic

Blizzard decided to post the above video, titled Bottom's Up, to their official Youtube account yesterday, stating that they found some extra footage shot just moments after the Mists of Pandaria cinematic had come to an end. The video features the return of the human and orc featured duking it out in the original cinematic -- only slightly less keen on tearing out each other's throats.

Personally, I could watch these two all day. I kind of want to see a series of cinematic shorts about their adventures, now. My only minor complaint is that they didn't use the kazoo music from Pandaria's inns for the backing track. I mean, I understand why, it would have been far too distracting, but man I love that music, and I'm going to miss it when we leave Pandaria's shores for good.

Filed under: Blizzard, Humor, Mists of Pandaria

New faction short story: The Jade Hunters

While the August Celestials weren't my favorite reputation grind in Pandaria -- not by a long shot -- I spent most of the expansion fascinated by the Celestials themselves. Where did they come from? What was their purpose in Pandaria? What was up with that statue of the Jade Serpent in the Jade Forest, why was Yu'lon's life bound to it, and were the other Celestials similarly bound?

Blizzard's latest and last offering in the faction short story releases we've seen all expansion is the one I was looking forward to most of all, because of those questions. The Jade Hunters by Matt Burns touches on the story of the August Celestials -- not the creatures themselves, but the organization, and how it came to be. But that's all a backdrop to the far larger story being told, one that finally highlights and talks about the three dwarf clans brought together in Cataclysm.

Oh, and it also talks about that statue that we completely destroyed in the Jade Forest.

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Filed under: Lore, Mists of Pandaria

WoW Archivist: Expansion gaps

Gap in the bridge on the Timeless Isle
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?

Expansion gaps are the most reviled of all content gaps. It's not just because they are the longest -- it's because at the other end of the gap lies so much to look forward to. Expansions change WoW from top to bottom. They usher in brand new worlds to explore and bring us new ways to play the game. That's part of why it takes Blizzard so long to release them.

In the meantime, we wait, mired in the old, but excited about the new.

We are experiencing what is likely to be the longest expansion gap so far in WoW's 10-year history. But what about the expansion gaps of the past? How do they stack up? What did Blizzard offer and what were players' reactions to them? Read on to find out!

Classic WoW to The Burning Crusade

Dates: August 22, 2006 to January 16, 2007
Duration: 4 months, 25 days
Subscriptions: Rising
Mood: Excited

The first expansion gap was also the shortest. It felt like a long time to players back then, since classic WoW offered patches and content at a blistering pace for the first two years of the game. Players were impatient, yes. That never changes. But we knew WoW was a hit and we were thrilled that the success of the game had made an expansion possible. We couldn't wait to roll a blood elf or a draenei, or take to the skies and fly for the first time. Plus, most raiding guilds hadn't conquered every boss (or even close), so they had plenty to keep them busy.

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Filed under: WoW Archivist

Censer of Eternal Agony and Bloody Coin hotfix and changes

A very brief list of hotfixes for patch 5.4.8 were introduced on Friday, brief enough that they likely escaped the attention of most players. However, if you are one of the players currently farming Bloody Coins on the Timeless Isle via the Censer of Eternal Agony, you may have noticed a few changes in the way the Censer works, and in the manner that Bloody Coins are farmed. The cooldown for the Censer of Eternal Agony has been increased from ten minutes to one hour.

In addition, Fire-Watcher's Oath now has a cooldown of ten minutes, down from the one hour mark it was set at previously. Its cost is now 100 Timeless Coins, rather than 50 Bloody Coins, and the transformation now allows both mount usage and druid shape-shifting. In addition to that, the internal cooldown on earning Bloody Coins has been significantly reduced.

Community Manager Lore hopped on the official forums to discuss the changes in detail.

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Filed under: PvP, Mists of Pandaria

WoW Archivist: Flight

Sparkle Pony
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?

Flying is second nature to WoW players. We've been doing it for almost eight years now. Sure, we've adventured in a few flightless places, like the Isle of Thunder, the Isle of Giants, and the Timeless Isle. Even The Burning Crusade, where flying originated, had a no-fly zone on the Isle of Quel'Danas. (What is it with these isles anyway?) But almost always, since 2006, we've flown. And we always expected to, for the vast majority of our in-game time.

Now, because of Blizzard's impassioned arguments against flight on Draenor, flying is suddenly controversial. If you look back, you can see why: flying has changed the game like no other feature before or since. Let's start where it all began, however, with classic WoW's humble flight paths.

They used to be cool

I'm about to express something that you may not believe. Once upon a time, flight paths were cool. Yep, I said it. Before flying mounts, when you couldn't even get a ground mount until level 40 and epic ground mounts were just a dream for most due to the steep cost, in that early version of the game where you spent most of your travel time walking or riding at the pace of a Throne of Thunder gastropod, flight paths were cool.

Not only did they get you around the continent at the fastest possible speed, they gave you a cinematic view of Azeroth from the skies. It was the only time you could get that view from above. The first time most classic WoW players rode a gryphon or wyvern from A to B, we loved it.

No other MMO at the time had anything like it. We felt like masters of the world -- at least, when we could afford to take the trip. Most players were broke in the early days, and using flight paths too liberally often meant forgoing buying a new skill when you leveled. Taking a flight path was an indulgence, a treat, instead of the annoying hassle we see them as today.

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Filed under: WoW Archivist

Heart of the Valorous now live

So, in case you were wondering where that Heart of the Valorous buff was, here it is.

From today (May 30th) till Tuesday, June 10th at 9:00 AM PDT, the Heart of the Valorous buff will be active. It increases all valor points gained by 100%, meaning that (as an example) a daily quest that grants five valor points will now grant ten - it's essentially double your normal valor point acquisition.

All you have to do to earn valor at this rate is log on and do what you would normally do to gain it - there's no special item or requirement. So if you're trying to gear up a series of alts, now's basically the time to get on and play them. You have until June 10th, so get started.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, Mists of Pandaria

Know Your Lore: What we know of Warlords of Draenor

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.

There's been a lot of discussion about Warlords of Draenor ever since the expansion was announced at BlizzCon last year. The new content focuses around the world of Draenor -- an alternate version of the world we explored in Burning Crusade, one in which the Burning Legion never sank its claws into the orcish race and instead, the Iron Horde rose to take the world by force, then move in on Azeroth. It's a different kind of concept, one that might seem a little far-fetched even, until you realize we're playing in a universe where dragons, goblins, and the even the walking dead exist -- not to mention the giant humanoid talking cows.

But what seems to be concerning people the most is that the story of Warlords, despite being described as "the Alliance's finest hour," seems to be focused almost entirely on orcs. Orc warlords, orc clans, orc attacks, with little left to interest the player other than the potential of Garrisons, which aren't a story element so much as an active part of gameplay. So what gives? Are we jumping the gun on judging the expansion's lore? What do we really know about what's coming in Warlords, story-wise?

Read more →

Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore, Warlords of Draenor

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