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Posts with tag perculia

Hamlet talks raid awareness

Lei Shen encounter
If you're at all interested in the world of WoW blogging, there's a good chance that you're already familiar with the one run by the inimitable Perculia and Hamlet. If you're not, Hamlet's most recent post is a very good reason to change that. One thing I've always enjoyed about Hamlet's writing is that he has a very good grasp of perspective, and this latest entry is par for the course. This is a post about how to be a better raider, and it's not about DPS or meters. It's about correcting personal errors, specifically the kind that kill you, and in particular, about not standing in the fire.

Hamlet's principle thesis is that raid awareness is a skill that can be learned and practiced. That sounds simple enough in plain terms, but awareness and how to improve it isn't something I've seen often discussed seriously in WoW circles. Sure, I've heard many complaints (and made plenty myself) about people who die to easily preventable things such as fire, or void zones, or whatever, but it's usually talked about as if it's a done deal--"so-and-so pisses us off because they always die in the fire." Not "what measurable steps can so-and-so take to stop dying in the fire?"

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Raid Guides

Wowhead catalogs pop culture in WoW

Ever wondered about all the references to pop culture that permeate the World of Warcraft universe? Well, you're in luck. Perculia from Wowhead is putting together a comprehensive guide to all things pop culture in WoW. And she's just getting started, this first instalment covers items that relate to general culture, food and drink, movies, television and other video games.

And it's really interesting reading. I'm kind of terrible at pop culture, but even I've heard of P.E.T.A. What I didn't know was just how many in-game items reference the charity. G.E.H.T.A., for example, is a gun that reduces your attack power against beasts, found in the D.E.H.T.A.'s little P.I.T.A. achievement chain. It's accompanied by various other ethical items.

That's just the tip of the iceberg. Perculia has a truly encyclopaedic knowledge of WoW items, and it's great to read as she delves into that expertise with guides like these! Read through it, I'll bet you learn something new.

Filed under: News items

BlizzCon 2013 Impressions: CCed in the BlizzCon experience

The woman who approached our lunch table seemed friendly but slightly uncomfortable. "Excuse me, but do you work for Blizzard?" she asked with a tentative smile. Her brother, she went on to explain, had once known somebody who supposedly went on to the work there, but she didn't know the first thing about the game and had no idea if that was true or what he did there. We exchanged a quick glance -– incoming story about someone who once tested a Blizzard game, am I right? -– and continued to munch on our salads while nodding and making polite noises.

"So what's your friend's name?" inquired the ever-personable Michael Gray. "Chris Metzen," she replied almost apologetically. "Is he ... somebody?"

Our friendly local storyteller (who preferred to remain anonymous –- but my report here on the BlizzCon experience wouldn't be complete if I didn't share her story with you) went on to share a tale of growing up across the street from the Metzen family here in Southern California, where her brother played T-ball with the pint-sized future rock star of Blizzard. The thing she remembered most about "little Chris," as she called him, was the game in which he executed his task as catcher so enthusiastically that he found himself caught in the netting behind the plate -– CCed so completely, in fact, that the team's parents had to come cut him out with scissors.

Everybody all together now: Awwww ... (/grin)

All these years later, we find ourselves happily CCed in the net cast by Little Chris himself, the World of Warcraft of his imagination. And back at BlizzCon, our lunchtime encounter with a friendly SoCal native encapsulates the spirit of the BlizzCon weekend -- people brought together by Blizzard's games. You won't find any reveals about the expansion in this BlizzCon roundup, but if you're interested in some of the faces and places seen around the convention all weekend, read on!

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Filed under: BlizzCon

The ongoing mystery of the Unborn Val'kyr

The ongoing mystery of the Unborn Val'kyr
Earlier in patch 5.3's PTR cycle, developer Cory "Mumper" Stockton revealed the Unborn Val'kyr, a new wild pet coming to Northrend. That very night, players began scouring the PTR for any trace of it -- to no avail. A few days later, Stockton asked users on Twitter whether or not they'd found it yet. They hadn't, but as it turns out, at the time of those tweets, the pet had not yet been activated on the PTR at all. Whoops!

However, it has been active for quite some time now, and the community at large is still not entirely sure how it works. According to the information we've been given, the Unborn Val'kyr is not a pet that is randomly spawned, but rather only spawns under specific, unique conditions. The pet has now been found and caught, but the conditions under which it spawns to begin with are still unknown.

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Filed under: News items, Mists of Pandaria

Wowhead interviews Lead Encounter Designer Ion "Watcher" Hazzikostas

Wowhead interviews Lead Encounter Designer Ion 'Watcher' Hazzikostas
The slew of developer interviews continues! Wowhead guru Perculia interviewed Lead Encounter Designer Ion "Watcher" Hazzikostas earlier this week, quizzing him about all things patch 5.2. Included in the discussion was the Ra'den encounter, which is not only hidden behind a heroic kill of the final boss of the raid, but also features limited attempts. Also included were plenty of questions about Tier 14 content and how the developers felt it worked out, as well as the question of just what kinds of progression paths are in store for raiders that have yet to complete Tier 14 content.

Perhaps most interesting to me, however, was a discussion regarding Challenge Modes and the lack of new 5-man content. So far we're at the second patch for Mists of Pandaria, and while we've gotten plenty of scenarios, we have yet to see any new dungeons added to the game. While Hazzikostas stated that no details were set in stone as of yet, there were plenty of dungeons that Blizzard has done in the past that would be fun to revisit.

The idea of suddenly making old dungeons relevant to players is honestly something I think could be really fun. There have been plenty of dungeons over the years that I've completely fallen in love with -- but as the game wends on and new expansions are launched, there's little reason to visit any of those prior dungeons. And while transmogrification usually leads me back, the dungeons themselves are easily soloed at this point in the game. What would it look like if the dungeons of old were suddenly a challenge all over again?

Check out Wowhead for more from Hazzikostas, including discussion on Feats of Strength, legendary weapons, those intriguing new Thunderforged items and much more.

Filed under: News items, Interviews, Mists of Pandaria

Where Are They Now? 2012 personalities, including the blind player and his 'guide dog'

Where Are They Now The last year in WoW personalities
At last, our look back at five years of WoW personality interviews rolls around to the duo everyone's been asking about: Hexu and Davidian, the British soldier blinded in Iraq and his redoubtable "guide dog" guildmate who steered him through full participation in current raid content. Their story exploded across the internet after we interviewed Davidian here on WoW Insider, and Blizzard recognized the dynamic duo with in-game helms with flavor text alluding to their inspiring bond of friendship.

Hexu and Davidian are both still playing World of Warcraft -- but the duo is together no more. As of the new year, the ever-energetic Hexu has been raiding on a new rogue, Dirtypawz, in Unqualified on Stormrage (EU). "I know!" he replies to my unspoken exclamation of surprise and sadness. "It was just that people were only raid logging, and it got boring -- but it was all amicable and cool. I still speak to people in Die Safe. I just wanted to do more than raid three nights a week." Hexu/Dirtypawz says a "very nice bloke" named Vatic is serving as his current raiding "guide dog" helper. "The people in the guild are all nice people," he adds, "and there [are] always things going on."

We'll visit with Hexu/Dirtypawz next month about how he's settling in and dig into his tips for the many sight-disabled players who've written to us during the past year trying to reach him for advice.

Meanwhile, Davidian reports that the year since we interviewed him has been packed with recognition and encouragement. "The publicity was just unreal," he says. "Even to this day, I get people coming to our server just to say how much the story inspired them and restored their faith in the gaming community. The biggest thing of all, though, was the fact that it made its way to Blizzard, and myself and Ben got signed copies of the collectors edition of Cataclysm signed by at least 50 members of the Blizzard team, and [we] received in-game pets also. Then to top it off, having in-game items with our names on them was just outstanding -- I mean, to be immortal in a game that we love to play is just, well words couldn't possibly describe it."

All good people connecting to play a game that's close to our hearts ... Keep reading for more updates about people who love World of Warcraft, from our interviews during 2012.

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Filed under: Interviews, 15 Minutes of Fame

Discover wealth and achievements with the Riches of Pandaria

Image
Who doesn't like free gold? You'd be silly not to nab what's out there for the taking -- and there's far more for the taking in Pandaria than you'd think. Wowhead just finished up a guide for the Riches of Pandaria, which explores free gold and the achievements associated with said bounty with easy to follow maps and instructions for discovering all that Pandaria has to offer.

Scattered throughout Pandaria are objects called Treasure of Pandaria. Collecting these items will nab you a progressive series of achievements ultimately ending with the Riches of Pandaria. These Treasures of Pandaria are small, clickable items that you can find hiding in various places around each zone. Each object vendors for free gold -- up to 100g, free and waiting for you to just grab it and sell it.

Lest you think this is a task best saved for level 90, you should also note that these items grant a chunk of experience when they are found as well. Whether you're leveling through Pandaria for the first time, or simply on the lookout for free gold and more achievement points, Wowhead's guide is an excellent starting point to hunting down all the precious items that have been scattered across the continent.


Mists of Pandaria is here! The level cap has been raised to 90, many players have returned to Azeroth, and pet battles are taking the world by storm. Keep an eye out for all of the latest news, and check out our comprehensive guide to Mists of Pandaria for everything you'll ever need to know.

Filed under: Achievements, Mists of Pandaria

Behind Wowhead's Data: Perculia's peculiar talent for curation

Behind Wowhead's Data Perculia's peculiar talent for curation
I've always imagined the content manager of Wowhead as WoW's version of Star Trek's Majel Barrett, the iconic voice of the stream of data we can't help but consult like an oracle. Like Barrett, she sometimes appears in character, here in the game or there among the community blogosphere, but Perculia's primarily known for her steady grip on the fire hose of data represented by the Wowhead database.

No mere data junkie, Perculia brings a trained art historian's sensibilities to curating the game she loves. Ironically, when Blizzard commemorated her devotion to WoW's data earlier this year by naming an item after her, it was a guildmate who discovered its existence and tweeted the link -- yes, a Wowhead link -- to her.

WoW Insider: Perculia's Peculiar Signet -- congratulations! Tell us how Twitter managed to uncover this news before you did!

Perculia: Thanks! I had just finished posting a daily blog to Wowhead News and was settling down to write about new archaeology changes when one of my friends and guildmates, Esoth, sent me a tweet with the Wowhead link. Half-expecting it to be a broken page that required coding, I was pleasantly surprised to see my name on it! To the best of my knowledge, the item had a different name when we first datamined it, which explains why I didn't notice it at first.

I was super-excited and humbled when I clicked on the link; the following outpouring of congratulations on Twitter was similarly heartwarming. It's a fan's dream come true, one of those things everyone secretly thinks about but it's too abstract to think about practically shooting for. It's a lovely cycle where I was recognized for my contributions to the community, and my work in turn was shaped by my pre-Wowhead experiences in Azeroth.

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Filed under: Interviews, 15 Minutes of Fame

Famous poetry responsible for Cataclysm item names?

The incredible Perculia (content manager over at Wowhead) has just put up one of my favorite posts about World of Warcraft ever -- Cataclysm starter epics, justice point gear, blue drops from instances, and more are all named after or refer to famous lines and fragments from poetry by T.S. Eliot and John Keats.

Truth be told, I want to know the story of the moment when all of this snapped into place for Perculia and it became about finding an item for almost every stanza from these poems. It's a spectacular effort. As I read her post and clicked on items, it became abundantly clear that this is far from coincidence.

For instance, from the blog, Perculia has analyzed this particular stanza from Keat's Ode to a Nightingale:
'Tis not through envy of thy happy lot,
But being too happy in thine happiness,
That thou, light-wingèd Dryad of the trees,
In some melodious plot
Of beechen green, and shadows numberless,
Singest of summer in full-throated ease.
From Perculia's finding, we see that Keats' poems are used mostly for justice point gear at ilevel 359, with most of the dungeon 346 blues owing their monikers to his work. Eliot's poems are the source of many reputation rewards. Check out the full post on the Flavor Text blog.

Filed under: Lore, Cataclysm

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