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Posts with tag nethaera

Realm connections on hold until further notice


Realm connections have been put on hold until further backend work can be completed. Community Manager Nethaera let everyone know about this in a post on the official forms yesterday. This represents a deviation from what it has been like over most of the past year, with new realm connections happening every week or so.

However, recently the connections have ground to a halt as Blizzard works out various issues. While there has been little said about the issues by Blizzard, there have been numerous and credible reports of problems arising because of the connections -- everything from players not showing up in the zone correctly, to Auction Houses not working. For the most part Blizzard has been able to take care of these issues after a connection has been made, however the bumpy roll out still remains.

There is no indication as to when the connections will resume. Nethaera's full statement after the break.

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Filed under: News items

Next wave of Connected Realms announced

Next set of Connected Realms announced
Following Monday's successful connections, the next wave of realms to be added to the Connected Realms feature have just been announced. While Community Manager Nethaera had the names of the realms available for players, as of yet there still isn't a fixed date for the realm connections to take place. However, given the faster turnaround that we've been experiencing, players may see these connections happen sooner than one would think.

Nethaera
As a part of our ongoing Connected Realms implementation, we will be connecting additional realms as listed below. We don't have a specific date yet on when these connections will occur, but we'll provide another update once we do. Please be aware that as a part of the connection process realm times may change to match each other.

Next Realm Connections:

Dethecus and Detheroc
Auchindoun and Laughing Skull
Hakkar and Aegwynn
Rivendare and Firetree
Dunemaul and Bloodscalp/ Maiev/Boulderfist

We're currently evaluating further realm connections and will provide updates as they're available. For more information on Connected Realms, please read the preview blog post here.


It looks like the Maiev/Bloodscalp/Boulderfist triad can expect another addition to their happy little family with Dunemaul. In addition, Hakkar will join Aegwynn, which was connected to Gurubashi last week. If you're a player on one of the realms slated for connection, you might want to keep an eye on the official thread for future updates.

Filed under: Realm Status, Blizzard, News items

Latest round of Connected Realms coming Monday

Latest round of Connected Realms coming Tuesday
The latest sizable batch of realms slated for the Connected Realms feature will be going under maintenance on Monday, October 21 from 5:00 a.m. PDT until approximately 11:00 a.m. PDT, according to the official thread on the feature. Community Manager Bashiok also added that once these realms return from maintenance, the realm connections should be complete. The realms scheduled for this round of connection are as follows.
  • Balnazzar and Warsong
  • Gurubashi and Aegwynn
  • Dalvengyr and Dark Iron
  • Garithos and Chromaggus
  • Onyxia and Burning Blade
  • Maiev and Bloodscalp/Boulderfist
If you happen to be calling any of these realms home, be prepared for a brief bout of maintenance come Monday. However, Tuesday's regular maintenance should simply be a set of rolling restarts for everyone, so realms that are in the process of being connected should be hit with double downtime. This seems to be a pretty quick turnaround -- will we be seeing more realm connection announcements next week? For more information and updates on the process, keep an eye on the official forum thread.


Filed under: Realm Status, Blizzard, News items

New wave of Connected Realms announced

New wave of Connected Realms announced
After the connection of the Skullcrusher and Black Dragonflight realms earlier this week, Blizzard has announced the next set of realms to be connected -- and this time, there's quite a list of them. Twelve realms total are slated to be connected, although a specific date for the connection has yet to be announced. However, Community Manager Bashiok provided the full list, noting that these are all US realms -- no EU realms have been slated for connection at this time.

Bashiok
As a part of our ongoing Connected Realms implementation, we will be connecting additional pairs of realms as listed below. We don't have a specific date yet on when these connections will occur, but we'll provide another update once we do. Please be aware that as a part of the connection process realm times may change to match each other.

Next Realm Connection Pairs:
  • Balnazzar and Warsong
  • Gurubashi and Aegwynn
  • Dalvengyr and Dark Iron
  • Garithos and Chromaggus
  • Onyxia and Burning Blade
  • Maiev and Bloodscalp/Boulderfist
We're currently evaluating further realm connections and will provide updates as they're available. For more information on Connected Realms, please read the preview blog post here.


Note that the Maiev realm will be connected with the Bloodscalp/Boulderfist connection that was the first to be made in this process. Although an exact date for the connection has not been set, given the connection that took place during this week's maintenance, we can hope that these connections will also take place during regularly scheduled downtime. Players on these realms should continue to check back with the official thread on the forums for more updates as they become available.

Filed under: Realm Status, Blizzard, News items

Black Dragonflight, Skullcrusher realms to be connected tomorrow

Black Dragonflight, Skullcrusher realms to be connected tomorrow
Black Dragonflight and Skullcrusher, the two latest realms to be announced as slated for the Connected Realms feature will be connected tomorrow, October 15, during standard maintenance. The two realms were next in line after the success of the Bloodscalp and Boulderfist realm connection. Given that the realm connection will take place during regular server maintenance, one would hope that this means that the wrinkles have been ironed out of implementation -- but just in case, Blizzard will be providing updates on any potential delays.

The rollout for Connected Realms has been considerably slower than most players were expecting. However, it's nice to see that Blizzard is taking its time with this one, making sure that everything is functioning correctly and all potential issues have been addressed. Of course the question on everyone's minds now is which realms will be slated for connection next, and when will it occur? Are you hoping for the connected realm feature on your server?

Filed under: Realm Status, Blizzard, News items

Black Dragonflight, Skullcrusher realms to be connected

Connected realms implementation continues
After the successful integration of the Bloodscalp and Boulderfist realms, Blizzard is continuing with the slow rollout of connected realms. Although no date has been finalized, CM Nethaera has announced that Black Dragonflight and Skullcrusher will be the next two realms to be connected.

Nethaera
As a part of our ongoing Connected Realms implementation, we will be working toward connecting our next pair of realms, Black Dragonflight and Skullcrusher – we'll provide another update once we've finalized the date. We will also update this thread with any additional information that becomes available. Please be aware that as a part of the process, realm times may change to align better with each other.

We are currently evaluating additional realm connections and plan to provide a more complete schedule at a future point in time.

For more information on Connected Realms, please read the preview blog post here.


CM Bashiok stepped in later in the thread to clarify some details on the connected realms process. While many are eager to see this new feature give a boost to realms with lower than optimal populations, the process is far more complicated than you'd think. Blizzard is taking its time with each connection in order to evaluate possible issues with the process -- and the choice of realms was specifically to help identify potential issues. In other words, at this point in the process it's not so much a matter of how much a realm would benefit from a connection, as it is how much that connection will help clarify any potential issues with the process itself. Check out the full forum thread for more information and updates on the process as it continues.

Filed under: Realm Status, Blizzard, News items

Connected realms start September 25

Connected realms start September 25
Blizzard Community Manager Nethaera has updated the world today, as we wait anxiously for Connected Realms to revitalize our low population homes. We've known for a while that Boulderfist and Bloodscalp would be the guinea pigs, but we now have a timeframe, and Blizzard are sticking to the redefinition of Soon(tm). The connected realms will launch tomorrow, as Nethaera clarifies:

Nethaera
Update: In order to implement our first Connected Realms, Boulderfist and Bloodscalp will be taken down for an extended maintenance beginning Wednesday, September 25, at 3:00 a.m. PDT until approximately 11:00 a.m. PDT. During this time these realms will be unavailable for play. Additional realm connections are planned for the near future, and we'll be posting a full list at WorldofWarcraft.com as soon as we've finalized the details.

So, if you're on either of those realms, be aware of the additional downtime, and do keep an eye out for the folk from the other realm. If you are on Boulderfist or Bloodscalp, let us know how the Connected Realms are working out!

As Neth mentions, there are more Connected Realms planned for the future, probably depending on how this works out, so keep an eye on the official site for that list, and of course we'll keep you up to speed as best we can.

Filed under: News items, Mists of Pandaria

Nethaera fills in the blanks on Connected Realms

Nethaera fills in the blanks on Connected Realms
With patch 5.4 up and running, many players have been wondering about the status of the new Connected Realms feature. Questions have run the gamut from wanting to know the exact criteria of putting two realms together, to wanting a list of the realms that are scheduled to be connected. Most importantly, players have been wondering if the Connected Realms feature has actually been enabled, or if we have yet to see if the process has taken place.

Community Manager Nethaera filled in some of those blanks in a series of updates posted on the official forums. The first two realms that have been scheduled for connection are Boulderfist and Bloodscalp. The system will be rolled out over time, much like what we saw with the Cross-Realm Zones feature -- players won't suddenly see all realms introduced to the Connected Realms feature all at once. Blizzard intends to keep realm types together as much as it possibly can -- for those on RP realms, this means if your realm is connected to another, it will likely be another RP realm.

Nethaera went on to note that faction balance, something that has caused many players to struggle on incredibly lopsided realms, may not be the ultimate reason for a connection. But perhaps most importantly -- as of Friday, no realms have been connected. Any server restarts or messages about Connected Realm restarts in game are absolutely not an indicator that your realm has been connected to another -- it's simply some of the work that needs to be done in order to enable the connecting process, should it need to be utilized. For now, it seems that players are still isolated on their own realms -- but there should be further updates to the thread if that changes. For more information on the implementation of this new feature, check out the thread on the official forums.


Filed under: Realm Status, Blizzard, News items

Patch 5.3: Known issue with pet licenses

Community manager Nethaera hit the official forums this afternoon to notify players of a known display issue with pet collections. The notice reads as follows:
Known Pet License Issue
We are currently aware of an issue in which upon logging into the game, it may appear that some pets are missing. A fix has been applied to address this issue, though it may take a few hours before pets appear on the pet list again properly.

In other words, while your pet pane may display that you're missing some pets you've previously acquired, they haven't actually been lost. By the time you read this, the issue may even have been resolved already. In either case, don't panic: your pets will return soon.

Filed under: News items, Mists of Pandaria

Should WoW add a Deathmatch Battleground?

I was reading twitter as I often do... no, really, it's for work, I'm not just wasting time posting jokes about wearing a crown roast as a helmet... when I saw Nethaera post this tweet, which led me to this forum thread. While perusing the thread I eventually found Neth's response to it, and that got me thinking about the concept.
Nethaera - Could we get a PvP battleground?
Battle grounds have always been missing an important part of world pvp.... PvP. Make it like a big arena but not so big that people can't hide. 10 to 15 players forced into all out pvp. First to so many kills or 10 minutes, whichever comes first, wins the round.

No need to even create an area for it. Just make a copy of Blackrock mountain in an instance.

That is PvP I would actually like... its the reason I liked AV so much back before it was turned into race where pvp sometimes breaks out.

What you're asking for is a straight Death Match type of Battleground. I'm not sure it would be compelling as you think. I'm a big fan of DM as well, at least in FPS', but for an MMO like World of Warcraft, I question how enjoyable it would be in the long run for people. I think for players who feel very comfortable with their abilities, straight head on PvP like that would be fun for them, but for others, I'm not sure it would have the same appeal.

That said, I'm not killing the discussion. I'm just interested in how you feel this would work or appeal to a wide enough audience for it to be worth creating.


I have in the past advocated a deathmatch style BG because I do understand the original poster's point. But let's really take a look at what a deathmatch BG would have to entail.

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

Blizzard's official look at patch 5.3

Blizzard Blogs on patch 53
Blizzard has been blogging up a storm about patch 5.3, and there have recently been 2 more articles added to their arsenal. The first is a run-down of the new scenarios available, posted by Community Manager Nethaera, which runs players down the four new three-player scenarios coming in patch 5.3. Neth gives us a quick summary of the stories behind the scenarios, while doing a great job of not being too spoiler-heavy. She runs down the background of Blood in the Snow, Dark Heart of Pandaria, Secrets of Ragefire and Battle on the High Seas. You can also check out WoW Insider's own articles on Blood in the Snow and Dark Heart of Pandaria, but beware the light spoilers that lurk within!

Nethaera also briefly discusses the new difficulty level that will be added with patch 5.3, heroic scenarios. She clarifies that they are intended for pre-made groups of three players, and will award a hefty 120 valor, as well as bonus valor for completing the objectives.

What's more, Blizzard has recently published a guide to getting geared for 5.3, aimed at players with alts, and players who are returning to the game. They've got some great tips in there, even going so far as to acknowledge some neat tricks that'll have you running the Raid Finder in no time.

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Filed under: Blizzard, News items

What makes a compelling character?

Faction Leaders
I don't know how many of you frequent the official Story Forum. It can be an intimidating place. Beware, all ye who may mention the words "Lordaeron," "Sylvanas," or "Southshore;" and these days add "Sunreaver" and "Dalaran" to the list of ten-foot-pole topics. I still visit the Story Forum regularly and if you're a lore buff its often a good source for varied discussion and debate. The amount of detail folks are able to recite at a moment's notice never fails to impress me, and has more than once sent me scurrying to my personal Warcraft library to fact-check or reread something with an eye for a new interpretation.

Recently, Nethaera has paid a visit to the story forum, and she asks you all directly: What makes a compelling character? What makes a character strong or weak or interesting or boring? What makes a character your favorite? What are the things that draw you to a fictional personality, what are the things that repulse you? As for me personally, well, I'm pretty sure the WoW community is more than familiar with some of my favorites (shameless self promotion). The reasons why I find those characters compelling are varied, but mostly boil down to the situation of being between a rock and a hard place. I like stories where there aren't good answers, where every way you look, you lose. Maybe I'm a Debbie-downer, but if the path to victory is obvious, I am bored to tears. Don't give me that, I don't want to read it. Give me someone who has struggled and fought and who will never be sure if they did the right thing. Give me something, and someone, that will haunt me.

What makes a character compelling to you? What fuels your imagination? If you've ever wanted the chance to talk with a blue about your favorite WoW personalities and share your personal idea of what you'd like to see out of WoW's canon characters, now is your opportunity!

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, Lore

Nethaera wants to know your most coveted and unusual items

nelf map emote
Over at the official forums Community Manager Nethaera has a bit of an unusual question for everyone: do you dream of electric sheep? Well, okay, it's not exactly that question. She wants to know what unusual or unique items you hoard, keep, or carry and the reason why. Do you hang onto Pamela Redpath's tea for courage when you face the undead? Do you keep Archmage Vargoth's Staff for some company on those long, Netherstorm nights? Or is it a practical item that you prefer - a repair bot or the Direbrew Remote for when you simply must have some of that Dark Iron brew?

This question is actually a tough one for me to answer. Not because I don't have an answer but because I have entirely too many answers. My bags and bank are stuffed full of random items that I refuse to get rid of, even now-useless stuff like Shard of the Fallen Star. I guess if I had to choose, I'd say it'd be a tie for two: my Orb of Deception and Orb of the Sin'dorei. I love turning my night elf into an undead or blood elf, respectively, though unfortunately the Orb of Deception requires being equipped in a trinket slot to work, so it's not very practical for raiding. The Orb of the Sin'dorei you can just click to use. True story: once upon a time back in Wrath I was hanging out, transformed into a blood elf, at the Ulduar summoning stone helping bring my guildmates to the raid. Another Alliance player walked up and /spit on me. When I whispered him with a frowny face emote, he freaked out and thought I was a hacker. Helpful tip, my friend: a blood elf in full tier 7 druid gear is not actually a blood elf! Also, you shouldn't /spit on people, it's really rude!

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, Humor

Nethaera puts the Knaak hate in perspective

Some of the people who follow the WoW books are not very big fans of Richard A. Knaak. They don't feel that his characters are developed, that the plots connect well, and that his stories themselves are well done. Basically, they don't like his writing.

Now in an academic or one-on-one discussion, this wouldn't get nasty. But this is the internet after all, and people have a tendency to go nuts about stuff. One of the favorite targets of some is Knaak. Nethaera lends her voice:

Nethaera
I think this is the beauty of reading books written by different authors. Their style is going to appeal differently to one person than it does another. There are many times my friends and colleagues will absolutely rave about a particular author, but when I go to read, I find I'm turned off by them and can't agree.

Likewise, there are many people that prefer the way I relate information over one of my colleagues or vice versa. Hopefully, overall, we manage to convey the information that's most important/relevant and that more people enjoy it than not. We can't please all the people all of the time, but hopefully, those that may not be happy about the author selection will be pleasantly surprised with the outcome. As always, the Creative Development team is working very closely with Mr. Knaak as well as the other authors to make sure that we're delivering the best stories we can.


Personally, I don't mind his writing at all. I'm not saying it's on the level of China Mieville, Ed Greenwood, or R. A. Salvatore; but I still enjoy what he writes. Some might even argue with me about the merits of those authors, but then again, that's Neth's entire point: to each their own.


Filed under: News items

The balance between new and old content

The balance between new and old content
In some ways, the development team on World of Warcraft has to constantly pay for their own successes. Nostalgia is a potent force, and players often look back fondly on their favorite experiences and want to experience them again. The recent patch 5.1 changes allowing max level players to enter and solo older raid content is a testament to how much goodwill there is towards these older experiences. In both Cataclysm and Mists of Pandaria, older dungeons were revamped and raised to the then-level cap as heroics, and two older raids (Zul'Gurub and Zul'Aman) were brought into Cataclysm as five man dungeons to tie into a further storyline.

Today, while reading the forums I came across a post by Nethaera that really sums up the difficulty in this kind of balance between player nostalgia and new experiences. One of the things I think Cataclysm showed us was that there are limits to how much time players will accept spent on revamping old content and that Blizzard really has to focus on what's new in order to keep the game moving forward. As much as we all love a good soak in nostalgia, it's never as good to actually eat the leftovers as we convinced ourselves it was.

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

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