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WoW Insider Show Episode 85: Appeasing the Ret Monkey

A good time was had as always on last weekend's WoW Insider Show -- Adam Holisky kindly stepped into the broadcasting booth with Turpster and I, and we answered some emails (including whether it's OK to give cloth drops to leather wearers, as long as it's an upgrade, and more on which tanking class is the best to take with you), and talked turkey on the biggest stories in the World of Warcraft. We chatted about what might be in store for the next content patch and expansion, what's up with WoW's numbers still going up, and what's new with Wintergrasp in 3.1. We also had a straight-from-the-scene report about the PETA event -- stay tuned for more about that later today.

And we got some interesting Ret Monkey pictures -- the one to the right is by Hydralol of EU Magtheridon, and the other one in the gallery below is by Abbort from Hellscream. Both of these, and any other pictures that you can come up with of the Ret Monkey or any of us who work on the show can be eligible for our Fan Art contest, so enter that if you'd like.

Finally, we have rounded 6,000 followers on our Twitter account, and we're headed to 9,000 -- as we say on the show, it would be great if we could hit that by our 100th show, and combine everything into one big party-down spectacular. So tell your twitterfriends, especially those interested in WoW, to give us a follow. They (and you) won't regret it.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Podcasts, Podcasting, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Lore, Wrath of the Lich King, Fan art, WoW Insider Show

A WoW gift bag for Valentine's Day

How great is this? Reader angrypanda a.k.a. Joshua links us to this update on his Livejournal, in which he shows off the awesome set of gifts his wife got him for Valentine's Day. It's a romantic gift basket, with everything, from the chocolates to the Linen Bag itself, marked out with WoW-style tooltips. Everything looks authentic, too -- there's a Bag of Candies, Dark Desire (looks like the hit rating bonus got nerfed for the RL version, though), and even a Moonberry Juice. And there's a "Jox (Horde) Shou" handmade craft in there, too -- those are their character names, Jox and Lykishou.

Joshua says he and his wife have been married nearly 15 years, and they weren't planning to do much this year (or so he thought -- here's hoping they had a very nice dinner and movie later that evening). Very awesome. Because the Livejournal seems to be hidden behind a content filter of some kind, we've put all of Joshua's pics in a gallery below so you can see everything all in one place. What a terrific Valentine's Day gift.

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Events, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Blizzard


This is brilliant -- after Anna jokingly asked for pictures of Snowshaman, she actually got one. Niyahti and her husband built this snowshaman, complete with two totems (though we're not sure which ones they are -- Wrath of Air and Frost Resist maybe?). Sure, it loses a little something in the translation from polygons to frozen water, but remember the medium. Considering it's handmade with snow, that's a pretty good snowshaman. The horns on the head must mean it's a Draenei, right? Though I have no idea what the sticks are coming out of the front.

And hey, if you happen to get a nice bit of snowfall this month and feel like you can make a better one, feel free. We'd love to see it.

Filed under: Shaman, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Humor, Fan art

Reader Halloween costumes 2008

Readers have already started sending in a few costumes for Halloween this year -- if you're dressing up as something from the World of Warcraft, don't forget to take a picture and send it through our tipline. Reader Taytayflann of Frostmane assembled this great Bloodfang costume from a Horde hoodie that he bought -- the shoulders, which took the longest to make, he says, are made out of shin pads, cardboard, wire, red and black cloth, and staples. They turned out really well, and even though it was probably tough putting them together, it was probably still easier and faster than traipsing around Blackwing Lair with 40 people trying to get the virtual set.

There are only a few pictures in the gallery below, but we'll be adding in your entries from the tipline throughout the weekend (both of real-life and ingame costumes), so check back to see more. And don't forget to have a safe and happy Halloween tonight from all of us here at WoW Insider.

Filed under: Tailoring, Fan stuff, WoW Insider Business, Odds and ends, Raiding, NPCs

BlizzCon 2008: The costumes

The best part of coming to a convention like BlizzCon? Sure, the news is great, and it's fun to meet the devs and fellow WoW players, but let's be serious: everyone comes to see the costumes.

If you didn't make it to Anaheim, here's the best part of the convention for you. We'll be updating this gallery all weekend long with all of the costumes we see on the floor, so make sure to check back throughout the next two days to see all of the people that showed up looking silly awesome. Ok, so yes, some of these are more awesome than others. But you have to give it up for anyone who has the courage to go out in public dressed like a Blizzard character.

Filed under: Fan stuff, Virtual selves, RP, BlizzCon

A sneak peek at the BlizzCon floor

Our good friends at the Orange County Register were lucky enough to be let into BlizzCon yesterday (we'll be on the floor in just a few hours here), and they've got a preview gallery of what it's like in there up on their site right now. There's nothing super revealing in there, but there are lots of pictures of vendors setting up, and the various stages they'll have at the event. The Illidan statue from last year is making a re-appearance, and he's joined by someone Starcraft fans will want to see.

We can't wait to get in there -- Diablo 3 will be playable, and of course we'll have coverage from all the panels, tournaments, and booths inside the convention center all day today and tomorrow. The Opening Ceremony starts at 11am PST, so stay tuned here to watch our coverage as it goes down live.

Filed under: Events, Fan stuff, WoW Social Conventions, Galleries, BlizzCon

World of WarCrafts: Raid art

Every Thursday, Shelbi Roach of The Bronze Kettle guides you in creating WoW-inspired crafts using real world mats with World of WarCrafts.

With Wrath looming over the horizon, the instances we currently spend all of our time inwill become obsolete. The dusty halls of Karazhan will be forgotten and we will never have another chance at obtaining an Amani War Bear.

So, here's your chance to commemorate the good times with your fellow guildies and spruce up your WoWspace.

Here is what you will need:
  • White Cardstock
  • Color Printer
  • Scissors
  • Paper Cutter
  • Xacto Knife
  • Double Sided Tape
  • Photo Frames (8x10)
  • Matboard (3 for 8x10 frames)
Click on the images below to view a gallery of step-by-step instructions.

Filed under: How-tos, World of WarCrafts

A Fire-specced Chevy Grand Prix

Miamoryax, an undead Mage from Blood Furnace, sent us these pictures of her new car and license plate -- she took along her Carrot-on-a-stick and Horde keychain (we'd like to see pictures of that) to the DMV and decided to pick up a vanity plate that was fitting of her Mage mentality (and car's red color). Looks great, but the car's probably got to worry about pulling aggro with all that visual DPS.

We've added her pics to our WoW license plate gallery, where you can see players of all specs and classes sharing their love for the World of Warcraft through their favorite mode of transportation. It's touching, really, although it does provide an interesting insight into the kinds of cars we drive around: cheap ones, by the look of it. Blizzard's got all of our car money, apparently.

Update: Wish granted. Here's the (official!) Carrot on a Stick keychain, seen elsewhere in Mia's Flickr stream.

Filed under: Mage, Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Mounts

WoW Insider webclip and galleries

Two new improvements to announce on this, your favorite site about World of Warcraft. First of all, iPhone and iPod touch users will likely be happy to see that this site, along with all the others in the Joystiq network, are now equipped with Webclip icons (these are epic icons with a +15 to stamina, which any iPhone user will appreciate). Just make a Webclip with the browser on your iPhone or iPod touch, and our shiny icon will automatically appear on your home screen.

Also, we are extremely proud to announce that we have some shiny new galleries here on the site -- our design team has implemented an awesome (and slick black) interface for browsing all of the pics we've ever posted so far, so if you've never browsed our patch 2.4, BlizzCon costumes, Around Azeroth or Tales from the Lion's Pride Inn galleries, now's the time to do so.

More design updates are still on the way here at WoW Insider -- stay tuned!

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, WoW Insider Business, Galleries

Guildwatch: Wish you were here

I like it when people spend a little time to gussy up their guild's raiding pictures. A good, detailed guild kill picture (like the one from Order of the Raven on Aggramar above), is like a nice little postcard, a souvenir for everyone on the raid. If your guild has a particularly nice or well designed kill shot, send it to (along with your drama, downed, and recruiting tips as always) and we might have a whole gallery of them to show off next week.

In the meantime, click the link below to get your weekly dose of drama, downed, and recruiting news. It's all the guild action you'd want, without ever signing a charter!

Read more →

Filed under: Guilds, Instances, Raiding, Guildwatch

WoW Insider at Dragon*Con - Wrap-up

This year, Elizabeth and I headed off to Atlanta, GA to cover Dragon*Con. In its 20th year, Dragon*Con is the United States' largest Pop Culture themed 4-day geek-fest, to put it mildly. While you won't get official numbers from the organizers past 20,000 participants, we heard whispers of numbers well over 40k in attendance if you counted each membership separately as opposed to combining the single-day passes like they do.

For our first year, we primarily set out to spread the WoW Insider love and get to know the community. That said, the reception and excitement we got from the Dragon*Con community at seeing us there overwhelmed both Elizabeth and I. It has ensured that we'll both be back in 2008 to cover all the myriad World of Warcraft goings on for WoW Insider! (As well as ensuring that we'll be back to help run the First Annual Dragon*Con MMO Costume Contest, slated for 2008!)

To check out a condensed recap of this year's various events, as well as the two (enormous) photo galleries chock full of various sights from D*C 2007, join me after the jump!

Gallery: DragonCon WoW

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, WoW Social Conventions, Odds and ends, Galleries

Even more pictures from the BlizzCon floor

Here are even more pictures from the floor of the BlizzCon exhibition hall, including tournament action, pictures from the various exhibitor booths (Richard A. Knaak is in here, as well as the artists hanging out and creating artwork at the Upper Deck booth, and even one shot of the Nvidia girl.

Additionally, I'll be adding pictures to this gallery throughout day 2, so keep checking back to see what else there is to see in BlizzCon's main exhibition hall.

Filed under: Events, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, BlizzCon, Wrath of the Lich King

CM chaos on the PTR

The community managers showed up on the PTR on Friday, and as you might imagine, chaos ensued. Eyonix appeared as a level one gnome, and he and Tseric both got invited to a player guild, where they chatted with players for a couple of hours. I don't know if any actually battleground matching systems got tested (that was originally their reason for showing up), but apparently lots and lots of people got killed by Gruul, Baron Rivendare, and even Nefarian appearing in Lower City Shattrath.

Hopefully a CM event like this (as has happened before, when the expansion beta ended) signals that the end of the PTR (and the patch going live) is right around the corner.

Gallery: CMs ingame

Filed under: Patches, Odds and ends, Blizzard, NPCs

The Draw Your Favorite NPC Contest

I don't think I've ever seen a forum thread that has promised so much, and yet delivered so little-- so far. Then again, if ths above image of Hogger is all that ever comes out of this thread, it'll all be worth it.

Caela on Earthen Ring has kicked off a "Draw Your Favorite NPC" contest, and it has the potential to be legendary. So far, there are only two pictures submitted-- the one above is amazing, and it's by Arity of ER. The other one is of Cookie McWeaksauce, and it's drawn by Umilluer, also of ER.

Now, the contest (though, as Caela says, it's really more of an exercise) doesn't end until Saturday the 21st, so I'd expect that people might still be working on their pictures-- hopefully we'll see a lot more of these. In the meantime, if you've got pictures for the contest, throw them in the comments below, or put them on that forum post. It'll be tough to beat that Hogger picture, I know, but if you've got any interest in drawing your favorite NPC (I'd draw High Overlord Saurfang if I had any artistic skillz whatsoever), please, please do so.

Filed under: Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Humor, NPCs

Exclusive Pics: WoW TCG at GenCon

Personally, I can't say that I'm real thrilled about the upcoming WoW TCG, partly because I've never really caught on to the whole CCG thing, and partly because I'm confused and frightened by any interaction with human beings that doesn't exist in a purely virtual world. Nope, it's just plain ol' online WoW for me!

But I'm sure that a number of you are interested in the game, and that's why I got in touch with my friend Chris, who attended last weekend's GenCon in Indianapolis. He doesn't play WoW, or know much about the game, but he did send this along:

"So yesterday I had a chance to check out the WoW TCG booth (or at least the Upper Deck booth? My mind is still spinning from the sensory overload). Anyway, they had demos going on, but only 4 at a time. I didn't try to get in, but quizzed a worker standing there. What he would tell me, is that the game comes out in October, there will be a starter pack, and boosters, they hadn't worked out the cost yet, and if I wanted to know more I should try a demo. I watched one for a bit, but being a total noob regarding WoW, and most TCG/CCGs in general, it didn't really tell me how the game was. The cards looked nice, and the people seemed to be soaking it in. One guy in another gaming session told me he had tried it and thought it was quite intuitive."

Not exactly a groundbreaking preview, I'll agree, but a valiant try for someone simply doing me a favor. Maybe it'll whet your already drooling palates for the game when it finally hits store shelves on 10/25.

And speaking of drooling, Chris also sent along a nice set of pics of what he saw at the booth for you all to drool over. Feast your eyes on exclusive pictures of the actual card game itself, right after you click the link below. And don't forget, if you have any impressions of the game at GenCon (or pictures better than these-- unlikely!), drop us a note at the "Send us news tips" link over on the sidebar.

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Filed under: Fan stuff, WoW Social Conventions, Blizzard

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