Skip to Content

WoW Insider has the latest on the Mists of Pandaria!

Posts with tag mists-of-pandaria

Know Your Lore: Pandaria's mark on Warcraft lore

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.

A little over two years ago, Mists of Pandaria was officially announced as the next expansion at BlizzCon to the puzzlement of many players. The idea of an expansion built around the pandaren race was a polarizing one -- some people loved the idea, and some were less than enthused. Although the pandaren were included in game lore as early as Warcraft III, there were those that scoffed at the idea of an expansion built around a race of giant talking bears, saying that they had no place in Warcraft at all. A year later, Mists was officially launched, and a little over a year after that, the events of Mists of Pandaria are wrapping up in a suitably dramatic conclusion.

And to the delight of many, myself included, this expansion has been anything but lighthearted and silly. Mists of Pandaria wasn't just a random expansion about giant talking bears, it was a revolution in the way that story and gameplay intertwine. While it may have had its faltering moments -- the inclusion of enough daily quests to make players dizzy among them -- the story took a life of its own, and the tale it told has definitely left its mark on future lore to come. Let's be clear, here: For a continent left cloaked in Mists for thousands of years, Pandaria has managed to work its way into the face of Warcraft lore in a manner that won't be forgotten, and has given us enough material to spur the story of the game for quite some time.

Read more →

Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Warlords of Draenor and the absence of Aggra

Let me tell you a little about my sister. My sister is married, in her thirties, and has four children -- all boys -- ranging from four to sixteen. Her house is a wild cacophony of boys being boys and the calls of various animals that she's acquired. It's a mini-farm, if you will, full of chickens, goats, pigs, dogs, cats, a couple of snakes, and possibly a species or two that I've missed. In addition to raising four boys with her husband, she also owns her own business. She runs her own grooming company here in town, and is both the sole employee and owner, successful enough that she's usually booked for at least a month out, if not more.

In addition to that, she runs two Renaissance festivals a year, hauls her family to regular camp-outs with the faire crew, regularly plays D&D with the gang, and knows how to shoot a longbow and a black powder rifle (and is a pretty good shot with both of them), along with cannons and trebuchets. She's a dab hand at cooking at home and over a campfire out in the wild, knows how to kill, gut and butcher just about anything, and how to tan and stretch a hide. On top of all that, I've heard she's a marvel at breaking up fights, reading bedtime stories, wiping tears from faces, kissing boo-boo's away, and snuggling in the mornings when little ones are sleepy and grumpy about getting up for school.

And god help anyone that comes between her and her family.

I'm telling you this story not to brag about my sister, although I love her very dearly, but to make a point that seems to have been sorely missed somewhere in the story of Warcraft. My sister isn't just a wife and mother. She's a warrior. She's a fighter. She's a spark of ferocity that will not be quenched. Where is her counterpart in Warcraft? That's a really good question.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, BlizzCon

A history of BlizzCon WoW reveals

It all started at BlizzCon 2005 with the above video revealing The Burning Crusade expansion. Some of you may only remember the cinematic trailers, but there has always been an announcement trailer comprised entirely of in-game footage. When Blizzard announced The Burning Crusade, they only revealed the new Horde race of Blood Elves. The Draenei were not revealed until about 6 months later.

Flying mounts, socketed items, a new race, and a new continent. It was an exciting time to be a WoW player. There were just 8,000 attendees that first year, which makes the Murky pet everyone received extremely rare. On the rare occasion when an unscratched card appears on the market, it can go for thousands of dollars. Also interesting to note that the canceled Starcraft: Ghosts game for PS2 and XBOX was playable on the convention floor that year. The Offspring performed in concert at the closing ceremony. The following year was one of the only two years since then to not have a convention, but BlizzCon returned in 2007 and was set to announce the most popular expansion yet.

Read more →

Filed under: BlizzCon

Faction short story Over Water now available

New Faction Short Story Over Water
It's only appropriate that the faction short story for the Anglers involve one of the biggest fish tales ever. Just released on the official site, Over Water by Ryan Quinn isn't quite as Anglers-centric as one would initially think. In fact, the faction isn't even mentioned by name. But, as it's becoming clear with these faction stories, the tales universally have less to do with the factions, and more to do with the characters in the stories learning lessons about themselves. Over Water illustrates this in a big way.

Tarlo Mondan is not a happy man. A member of the Alliance, he looks at the outcome of the war -- the Siege of Orgrimmar and new Warchief firmly included -- with bitter disdain. Oddly enough, he seems to share a lot in common with many Alliance players, dissatisfied with conclusion of the Pandaren campaign and wondering exactly what he'd gotten out of the whole mess while traveling home by sea. Unfortunately, a heavy storm knocks Tarlo overboard, and the ship sails off without him -- which is really where the story begins.

Left adrift, Tarlo is rescued by a trio of pandaren fisherman with a tale unlike any other -- and hidden within that tale, and the journey, is a lesson for Tarlo to learn. Taking place after Garrosh's defeat, Over Water feels a lot more introspective and subtle than prior short stories. It offers a glimpse into the heart of the Alliance through the eyes of a lone soldier, something we really haven't seen much of lately. I don't know exactly what I expected out of an Anglers story, but Over Water left me pleasantly surprised -- it's an incredibly well-written tale. You can read Over Water over on the official site, and while you're there, be sure to check out the other fine tales in the Destination: Pandaria section.

Filed under: Lore, Mists of Pandaria

Breakfast Topic: Do you want another 'people's legendary'?

Wrathion
The legendary cloak, often dubbed as the people's legendary, is a drastic departure from the legendary items of the past. As long as you put in the time there is literally no barrier to entry. It's the most powerful item you will equip this expansion -- sometimes the proc alone is over 10% of my damage on a boss fight, and that's not counting its enormous stat budget or the metagem.

I've had some friends express frustration with the quest chain because they're the type of player who takes frequent breaks from the game. If you sit out for a few months it's very easy to fall behind, and then you're stuck running old content to play catch up. Quest item RNG was a cruel mistress to some as well. I was lucky to get 10 of each sigil at roughly the same time, but I know guildies who had 50+ of one type before getting 10 of the other. There was also the PvP portion of the quest which was not popular. I'm afraid to admit how many attempts it took me to get that Silvershard Mines win.

I enjoyed the cookies along the way: the sha-touched gem, the weapon socket, the metagem, the epic cloak, and then finally the legendary. It was definitely worth the time investment for me. What about you?
Do you want another 'people's legendary'?
Yes, I'm happy with Wrathion's quest.3303 (61.6%)
I didn't like the quest, but I would still do it again for the legendary item.840 (15.7%)
No.1222 (22.8%)

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

Casual content convenience

As someone who writes about World of Warcraft for a living, something I do a lot is read the Blue Trackers. These systems watch every blue post, and collect them all into one place for your convenience. Just occasionally, there'll be funny ones that catch my eye, like this one from Senior Community Rep Jonathan "Zarhym" Brown:

Zarhym
I disagree with everything you didn't say.

And on this occasion, the thread he was responding to actually got me thinking. You see, the OP was jokingly taking one of the arguments that people make, the predictable ones about how everything was better back in the day, and isolating a key component of that argument: convenience and time spent.

The TL;DR on the post is that the game is now too easy, because everything's too convenient. It's worth noting, again, that the OP is entirely joking. He specifically spells out that one "issue" with the game as it stands is that you no longer need to sit in Trade for 30 minutes to an hour or more to get tanks and healers for your dungeon runs. You can now sit in capital cities, or even quest, while you wait for the LFG tool to do all the work for you. Terrible, right?

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

Looking for Raid must not be destroyed

Every so often, a new forum thread comes up saying that LFR is awful and should be removed from the game. This is one, but it's hardly new or unique (as the post closing the thread makes clear, there are already several forum posts on the topic) - the argument has existed in one form or another since LFR debuted at the end of Cataclysm.

It's no secret that I neither like LFR nor run it at all anymore. I am not the audience for LFR. And yet, I not only do not believe it should be removed, I believe it must not be removed. Why do I believe this? Well, multiple reasons.
  • LFR is the friendliest raiding option available to people with limited schedules or who are unable/unwilling to commit to overly structured play time.
  • LFR allows for access to content that would otherwise be unavailable for the majority of the player base.
  • LFR fills a niche - it is neither necessary nor forced upon players who have the time or ability to progress in flex, normal or heroic raiding.
One of the things I argued at the beginning of Mists of Pandaria was that content that wasn't necessarily content I personally cared about (pet battles, the Tillers, scenarios) was still good for the game. Options are good - it's better to have more of them, even if they don't suit everyone's playstyles. In many cases, I've only grown to believe this more strongly as LFR has moved from 'content I occasionally run' to 'content I never run' - my ability to completely disregard LFR as unimportant to my game only means that it proves that the developers have successfully balanced raiding.

I'm not blind to some of the problems that have hit LFR in the process, however. I've watched my wife (an excellent player hampered by the fact that her day job doesn't allow the kind of time we used to spend raiding together) struggle with bad LFR groups, and I do think there have been some changes to LFR that need to be addressed. Gutting the entire feature, however, is absolutely not the way to go.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Mists of Pandaria

Know Your Lore: Which side is Wrathion on, anyway?

Know Your Lore Which side is Wrathion on, anyway
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.

Once upon a time, an egg from a corrupted flight of dragons was purified. Even before he hatched, the dragon in that egg began to plot and plan. His first step was freedom -- both from those who sought to contain him, and those who sought to kill him. The second, far larger step was born of a vision ... a terrifying vision of a precious, fragile world abruptly coming to a devastating end. Wrathion is one of the stranger characters to have been introduced in Warcraft. While his plans in Cataclysm were fairly straight forward, Mists has proven to be a far more complicated gambit.

And through all of the quests and all of the plans, Wrathion has remained as enigmatic as he was the first time rogues set eyes on him. He can be cruel, he can be downright merciless if the need calls for it. Yet at the same time, he seems to possess an altruistic capacity that we've simply never seen before from a black dragon. He'll promise the world to you, and then turn around and promise the same to your enemy. Is he bad? Is he good? Is he siding with the Alliance or Horde? What makes Wrathion tick, and just whose side is he on?

Read more →

Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Mists of Pandaria on sale for $19.99 at Amazon, Gamestop

Get Mists of Pandaria on sale for $1999
Could you use a second copy of Mists of Pandaria? Do you know a friend who can? Right now, the latest World of Warcraft expansion is on sale at both Amazon and Gamestop for $19.99 -- not a bad price at all for the newest iteration of the game. And if you pick up the latest version of World of Warcraft on the Blizzard Store, the $20 program now includes the Cataclysm expansion. That nets you all expansions for $40, which is a pretty good deal as far as holiday gifts for gamer friends go.

Speaking of which, this is also a really opportune and inexpensive way to get yourself set up for the newly revamped Recruit-A-Friend program that should be starting at some point hopefully in the near future. Remember, the new system will be rewarding tokens that can be traded in for a variety of different rewards, so it might just be worth snapping up the game now while it's still on sale. You can head to either Amazon or Gamestop to pick up your copy.

Filed under: News items, Mists of Pandaria

Drowning in Timeless Coins

Drowning in Timeless Coins
I've been happily completing the daily over on the Timeless Isle every day -- it's an easy 50 valor points, after all. And while farming the 20 elite mobs needed for the quest, of course I've been hopping from rare mob to rare mob in search of pets or interesting toys. In the meantime, I've piled up a lot of Timeless Coins. I mean, a ridiculous number. I'd noticed people complaining that they had all these Timeless Coins, but I didn't really understand the problem. I mean, they aren't sitting in your bags taking up space in your inventory, they're just ... there. Incorporeal currency.

But it's slowly begun to sink in that there's a legitimate problem with the Timeless Isle and its bizarre form of currency -- namely that the only place you can spend that currency is on the Timeless Isle itself. Now don't get me wrong, I do enjoy buying trinkets and unusual things, but at the same time, if all those Timeless Coins pictured above were actually gold in my bank, I'd be ecstatic. Instead, I'm slightly nonplussed and wondering what the heck to do with all these incorporeal things I've gathered.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Mists of Pandaria

Recruit-A-Friend updates on the way

RecruitAFriend updates on the way
Updates to the Recruit-A-Friend system are coming at some point in the future, and perhaps sooner than we'd expected. According to an announcement on the official blog, as of today the Recruit-A-Friend program has been temporarily shut down while Blizzard works on updating the program with new features and new rewards. At this point in time, there's no time frame for when the program will return other than somewhere in the future.

Those players that are currently linked via the Recruit-A-Friend system can rest easy -- although the ability to sign up for the program is temporarily unavailable, players that are currently using the program will be unaffected, and any rewards that have not been claimed will still be available when Recruit-A-Friend goes live again. As an additional note, the official announcement suggested that players participating in the upcoming program will have more rewards available to them.

The exact details on this tantalizing bit of information have yet to be released, but this is likely referencing the points made in the patch 5.4 Developer Round Table released last week. Along with multiple rewards, the new system will be accessible via in game interface, and reward a token instead of a mount. The token can then be redeemed for a variety of different rewards, and those reward might possibly include retired Recruit-A-Friend mounts as well, although that hasn't yet been confirmed. For now, we'll have to wait and see what the new system entails, and exactly when implementation will take place.

Filed under: News items, Mists of Pandaria

Reputation in review: Pandaria

Reputation in review Pandaria
Mists of Pandaria represents a dynamic change to how we look at reputation in World of Warcraft. While Cataclysm's reputations were all by and large flat dungeon grinds aided by the use of reputation tabards, reputation in Mists took a much different approach. In fact, it took many, many different approaches -- each reputation grind in Mists of Pandaria was slightly different from the next, with no two taking the exact same process to get to the end of the climb.

On the WoW Insider show, we've talked before about how this is likely a grand experiment on Blizzard's part -- one to see which aspects of grinding reputation players tend to take really well, and which could be happily left behind. I've reviewed quite a few of the reputation grinds in Pandaria myself over the course of the expansion, largely because I'm obsessed with filling all those green bars. But what about the big picture? What really worked with reputation grinding in Mists, and what deserves to be left in the dust?

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Mists of Pandaria

Know Your Lore: The fate of Garrosh Hellscream

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.

In a recent edition of The Queue, one of our readers asked a question regarding the fate of Garrosh Hellscream in patch 5.4. It was a question that many players have actually been asking ever since Garrosh's fate was revealed. In the interests of avoiding spoilers, I won't mention that fate here, but be forewarned that this edition of Know Your Lore is chock full of spoilers for patch 5.4 that discuss the situation in full.

Garrosh Hellscream's journey began as leader-in-training for a remote, tiny village in Outland. Clouded with shame over his father's misdeeds, Garrosh was listless, depressed, and convinced that he was destined to lead his people down the same dark path that his father had. In the years following his introduction, Garrosh has discovered his father's heroic sacrifice, strove to live up to his name, eagerly sought to strengthen the Horde, and then promptly fulfilled his own sad vision of the future, leading his "True Horde" down a path of darkness that eerily echoed the familiar refrain of the Old Horde from so long ago.

Please note: There are spoilers for patch 5.4 immediately following the break. If you are avoiding spoiler content for the Siege of Orgrimmar, run away!

Read more →

Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Breakfast Topic: Bringing back the night

Stormwind at night
Have you ever thought it odd that when night falls in Azeroth, the stars appear, the sky darkens, but the landscape itself remains as bright as it was in broad daylight? Once upon a time, the nights in WoW looked something like the above screenshot. I can't pinpoint the source since it was so many years ago, but the original reasoning was it changed so people who could only play during the night wouldn't have to always play in the dark. The current official line is that it was purely an art decision.

There have been innumerable threads on the official forums pleading for the return of dark nights. Blizzard has been listening and in patch 5.4 they added a "test case" for darker nights, but only in Stormwind, Orgrimmar, and Vale of Eternal Blossoms. The difference is there, but you need to compare before and after screenshots to really notice it. It still doesn't scream "night has fallen."

Read more →

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

BlizzCon Online Sale is now live

The 2013 BlizzCon Online Sale is now live
If you're a BlizzCon attendee or Virtual Ticket holder, you can now start buying all the Blizzard goodies at the 2013 BlizzCon Sale. If you don't have a ticket, you will have to wait until November 9th for access to new merchandise such as the adorable Lil' Chen Plush (pictured above), or the $250 limited edition World of Warcraft Mahjong Set.

Unlike previous BlizzCon sales, all orders are shipped upon receipt. You won't be picking up your merchandise at BlizzCon. Blizzard promises additional surprises as the sale continues.

Filed under: BlizzCon

Around Azeroth

Around Azeroth

Featured Galleries

Patch 4.2: Regrowth and Molten Front quest hubs
It came from the Blog: Pilgrim's Bounty 2010
Cataclysm Elemental Invasion
Around Azeroth 3
It came from the Blog: Hallow's End 2010
WoW TCG Icecrown Epic Collection
BlizzCon 2010: Booths and show floor
BlizzCon 2010 official store
BlizzCon 2010: Retro Arcade

 

Categories

Joystiq

Massively

Engadget