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Posts with tag quests

Mists of Pandaria: Dave "Fargo" Kosak interview

Dave "Fargo" Kosak, lead quest designer for World of Warcraft, sat down with us at the Mists of Pandaria press event for an interview. We talked about the Horde/Alliance conflict, voice acting, pop culture references, Mists' accelerated production schedule, and more. Check it out!

WoW Insider: I guess I'm just gonna start off with some basic stuff.

Dave Kosak: Basic stuff is good!

Let's start with your overall philosophy for Mists of Pandaria.

Well, we're constantly experimenting with quests, and in Cataclysm, we created some pretty linear zones, as I'm sure you might've noticed. Some really big story arcs and big finishes. Certainly like in Mount Hyjal, we phased a huge amount of the zone, which worked because it was a pretty linear zone. A couple drawbacks, though: It was a shame that on your second or third time through, you had to play it exactly the same way. You know, you kinda lose some of that open-world feeling, you lose a little bit of that exploration when it's linear like that. But we loved the storytelling, so what we wanted to do with Mists was keep that kind of storytelling but make sure that you have the opportunity to go out and explore and experience the expansion differently, so ... let's see.

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Filed under: Blizzard, Interviews, Mists of Pandaria

Breakfast Topic: What's the best quest zone in the game?

Questing is a vital part of WoW, it really is -- at least until level 15! Those who have rolled healers or tanks can pretty well abandon it from that point forward, which is a shame, really. Blizzard has created an amazing world for us in Azeroth, and yet we're not really seeing it a lot of the time.

The screenshot is a fine example of this. Sure, it looks like Gilneas, but it's actually a little pocket of Blasted Lands southwest of the Dark Portal. Unfortunately, I was on my Horde warlock when I happened upon this little coastal settlement, so its inhabitants were less than friendly to me!

What are your favorite zones to quest in, and what makes a great questing zone? For me, the vital components are atmosphere, looks, convenience of travel and geographical layout, and quality of quests. A zone has to look good -- my preference is for dark, mysterious zones like Duskwood -- and have a great feel to it. I think the feel is some combination of continuity in the looks and the quest content, plus a sense of what's going on in the zone, a bit of a story that I'm part of. Travel has to be convenient -- in long, thin zones, there has to be a way to get around. Obviously, this is tantamount where you can't fly!

And the layout of the quests has to be convenient, too. I hate doing a whole bunch of quests in one area and then moving to another area, only to have to go back to where I started. And having to go back to the same place again and again. That's just me, though. And lastly, the fewer "bring me nine basilisk gizzard" quests, the better. I don't care if they're to make your soup or for a satanic ritual -- it's still dull!

Badlands, since its Cataclysm rework, has some amazing quest lines -- it's now on the list of vital places I'll always level through -- but visually, it doesn't do it for me. My favorite? Duskwood, by a long shot! How about you?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

Choose My Adventure Live: Questing in the Badlands

Choose the adventures of Robin Torres as Roblinator the goblin shamanator, or join in with It came from the Blog on Zangarmarsh (US-PVE-H) every Wednesday at 1 p.m. EDT.

This week, Roblinator is back questing in the Badlands, since she's still not 50 yet. I've got a solution to try for the slow questing problem, partially suggested by Kelius. Join us in game or by watching the stream above and participating in the chat after the break.

Update: The stream is now over. You can watch the replay of punching dragons by clicking on the image above.

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Filed under: It Came from the Blog, Choose My Adventure

Breakfast Topic: Where are the dropped quest lines?

This Breakfast Topic has been brought to you by Seed, the AOL guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider's pages.

I am a reader, and there is nothing I love more than a well-written, intricate plot -- and nothing I hate more than reaching the end of the story, only to find some of those plot strings dangling unresolved, leaving me wondering exactly what happened. I run into the same problem with missing quests in WoW. There are a couple of quests that I desperately wish existed in the game for me to enjoy.

Where is Magatha? There needs to be a quest to find and bring back Magatha Grimtotem to justice, and it would be even better if you had the option of bringing her back dead or alive. My tauren would cut her down where she stood, while my blood elf would shrug and bring her back alive.

The Missing Eggs -- if you have read The Sundering, you know that Krasus rescued Blue Dragonflight eggs and set them outside of time to prevent them from being destroyed. I want to find them, to present them as the resurrection of the Blue Dragonflight and see it change the world.

With the Battlemaid visions of the past, I would love to be involved in things that occurred during the Shattering or the Sundering, to see what happened and be there (in spirit at least) for part of it.

What quests or storyline threads are dangling out there that you want to be involved in resolving? Do they take place in the past or the present? Who do you think escaped from their just desserts a little to easily?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Guest Posts

It came from the Blog: Join our Sunday Love Fest SUNDAY 1 p.m. EST

The <It came from the Blog> family of guilds lovingly invites you to join the Sunday Love Fest for some fun-loving antics and possibly a rocket ride.
  • When: Sunday, Feb. 20 at 1 p.m. EST (10 a.m. PST, 11 a.m. server)
  • Where: In front of the auction house in Orgrimmar on Zangarmarsh (US-PvE-H)
  • Who: Any level Horde character
  • What: Love, quests, achievements, more love
  • How: Ask any member of <Blogling> for an invite, if you are not already a member of one of our guilds.
We will be streaming the event as usual, and there will be a event chat channel for us to not shout in (except for me) and get directions from. Everyone is invited, except for funsuckers, of course. This will be a PG event, as double entendres will be encouraged.

Rumor has it that Robinator is susceptible to being told she would look better as a goblin and will give rides if sufficiently flattered -- rides on her rocket of loooove*. That's what she said.

*Actual rocket may vary.

Please join us on Zangarmarsh (US-PvE-H) in <It came from the Blog>. Guild ranks of Blog Lurker or above can invite, so /whisper Robiness or any online member. You are all welcome as long as you play by our simple rules -- basically, don't be a funsucker! Visit the guild FAQ for more details.

Filed under: Events, It Came from the Blog

Breakfast Topic: Should WoW bring back attunements?

This Breakfast Topic has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider's pages.

Early raiding in World of Warcraft required wide variety of attunements, from "Hey! Go touch that rock!" to "Hey! Go do every almost raid and dungeon in the expansion!" Over time, many of these attunements were eased or lifted as the playerbase grew and more people were interested in experiencing the current endgame. In Wrath of the Lich King, we had just one fairly minor attunement, and that raid was in the initial tier of raiding for the expansion. The only real attunement since The Burning Crusade has been to reach the level cap and learn to perform well enough to not get kicked from the group.

As we look to the future of raiding, maybe we should look to the past as well. While attunements could often be time-consuming, many of them were completed by just playing the game normally, with some added direction beyond "kill mobs to collect phat lewts." Several attunements added much of the epicness that long-time players say that the game has lost over the past two years or so. Attunement quest chains also introduced us to a host of interesting characters and often fleshed out the lore behind the raid we were trying to gain access to at the time.

Given the current state of the game, could attunements return to the World of Warcraft? Better yet, should attunements return?

Should WoW bring back attunements?
Yes5293 (38.2%)
No3608 (26.0%)
Yes, but only for raiding content4954 (35.8%)

Learning your role

One of the things that playing other MMOs can do for your WoW experience is get you to question how the game does things, and more importantly, how you do them. Recently I've been flirting with the latest superhero MMO, and it does tanking differently, to the point that I had to start unlearning my WoW habits to play it.

This has me going back over the past six years and realizing I've had to relearn tanking four times now. I had to learn how to do it originally in order to start working on Molten Core for my then-guild, and then I had to relearn it in The Burning Crusade (and actually, I had to relearn it twice there, thanks to the awful implementation of rage normalization for warriors and our astonishingly bad AoE threat that whole expansion). In Wrath, I didn't so much relearn it as suddenly find it much more efficiently designed and fun. Finally, Cataclysm has me tweaking how I tank, but I can't really argue I've relearned it from the Wrath era so much as simply refined it. Meanwhile, I've also had to relearn the DPS side of my class every expansion, in much the same way.

All of this learning has been done on the fly. To paraphrase a famous quote, World of Warcraft is vast and deep, and I'm swimming forever. Most certainly, there are sources to go to for players who want to learn a new role (one of them being this site), but there's only so much you can be taught before you have to hold your nose and jump in. This makes me wonder two things. First, is there more that the game could do to teach those roles, and two, would it be beneficial or harmful to immersive gameplay if it did?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Cataclysm

Cataclysm Daily Quests, Part 4: Tol Barad proper

This article has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider's pages.

Welcome back to the fourth installment of this comprehensive guide to Cataclysm daily quests! In the first article, we discussed the basics of dailies and the profession dailies in capital cities. In part 2, we covered the Therazane dailies in Deepholm. Then in part 3, we went over the permanently available dailies in Tol Barad Peninsula. Today, we'll pick up where we left off and talk about the dailies obtained when your faction is victorious in the battle for Tol Barad, as well as the rewards available.

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Filed under: Cataclysm, Guest Posts

Cataclysm Daily Quests, Part 3: Tol Barad Peninsula

This article has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider's pages.

Welcome back to the Cataclysm daily quests series! Previously, we looked at daily quest basics and profession dailies and the daily quests in Deepholm. Today, we'll examine the world PvP hub of Cataclysm, Tol Barad, and the first half of its wealth of daily quests.

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Filed under: Cataclysm, Guest Posts

Breakfast Topic: What's the best new quest of the expansion?

This Breakfast Topic has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider's pages.

Bombs! Disguises! Flamethrowers! War! A really big fish! Questing after the shattering is a new experience, and I am loving it. Sure, there are plenty of the same old WoW quests, such as "go kill so many of those guys" or "go collect so many of these things." Those quests are great; however, there are a lot of new quests that seem to have a more console-game feel to them.

For example, in the Southern Barrens, there is a quest from good old Gann Stonespire. The quest is basically the same as it has always been (go kill nasty dwarves), but it's been revamped in an amazing way. Once inside Bael'Dun Fortress, you pick up a quest from a thinly disguised goblin who orders you to blow up the place. Once you activate the charge, you actually have to run out of the fortress, and at the entrance, it cuts to a little video that shows the explosion.

In other words, the quests have actual effects to them now. Back in the day, more often than not when I looted battle plans off an Alliance NPC and turned them in to a Horde commander, I got some sort of response like, "Good job! Now they can't attack us!" Not any more. After turning in some battle plans in Stonetalon, I hopped into a goblin antiaircraft machine and shot gnome pilots out of the sky.

The Stonetalon quest chain is, without a doubt, the best new chain I've encountered so far since the shattering. What do you think is the best new quest? What do you think about the integration of phasing and machines in the old world?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Guest Posts

Cataclysm Daily Quests, Part 1: Daily basics and profession dailies

This article has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider's pages.

Read the entire WoW Insider Cataclysm Daily Quest Guide series!

Since their introduction in the Netherwing quest line in The Burning Crusade, daily quests have become an integral part of World of Warcraft's design. Chances are you're familiar with the concept of dailies themselves and probably did your fair share of them during Wrath of the Lich King, but it's a whole new world out there. In this article, we'll go over the new daily quests in Cataclysm, their rewards, and how to get the most out of them.

To make sure we're all on the same page, let's go over the basics of daily quests. In addition to or instead of normal, one-time-only quests, certain NPCs throughout the world will offer "daily" quests. These quests are repeatable and bear a blue exclamation point rather than a yellow one to indicate their status. In the quest log, they'll be marked (Daily) and once you complete one, there'll be a counter at the top of your quest log showing how many daily quests you have completed that day.

When dailies were originally introduced, it was only possible to complete 10 per day, which meant you had to pick and choose which ones you'd complete. The limit has since been raised to 25, meaning you can spend a far greater amount of time on daily quests and also reap greater rewards. To break up the monotony somewhat, many daily quest givers will change their quests each day, picking from a set table of quests they offer. Generally speaking, the number of dailies offered by a particular quest hub will remain the same from day to day, though the specific quests may rotate.

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Filed under: Cataclysm, Guest Posts

Breakfast Topic: What are your resolutions for the expansion?

This Breakfast Topic has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider's pages.

In the final days of old Azeroth, before the Shattering, my friends were chomping at the bit. They were farming the elemental bosses for JP, taking screenshots of Darkshore and Stormwind Park, and discussing names for their forthcoming gnome priests. Where was I, while all this was going on? Far out in the Bay of Storms in Azshara, fighting a giant "minnow" named Maws. Yes, that's right: in the final hours of Wrath, I was finishing the Blue Shard portion of the Scepter of the Shifting Sands quest line. A little late? Yeah, you could say that. An eternal procrastinator, I started the entire chain with Only One May Rise exactly three days before the Shattering occurred.

As fellow Scepter-chasers will already realize, my efforts were truly epic -- and alas, all for naught. Though I was able to obtain the Blue and Green scepter shards after a mammoth three days of questing, farming, and running all over Azeroth, the Red scepter shard requires a second, fresh lockout of Blackwing Lair, and I did not have one. No Scepter for me. I don't regret doing the quest line, even if I didn't end up with the Feat of Strength; I'm a big quest nerd, and I loved experiencing the lore. I do, however, regret not starting earlier.

Therefore, in Cataclysm, I've made myself a promise: I will do every quest available to me, from Hillsbrad to Mount Hyjal, Darkshore to Deepholm. As I go through the lowbie zones on my Loremaster druid, I won't move on when I get the achievement; I'll complete everything available, just to see what happens.

Is there anything you were unable to finish before the Shattering? What are your resolutions for playing in a post-Cataclysm Azeroth?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Guest Posts

Breakfast Topic: How often do you read quest text?

This Breakfast Topic has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider's pages.

If you have played WoW for more than five minutes, you have done a quest. It is nearly impossible to avoid doing them altogether. Since the option has been implemented to have instant quest text and the options tracked on the map by Blizzard's default UI now, most players see the exclamation mark, click on the NPC, accept the quest, and go get the items -- whether it be someone's head, 10 rocks, or going to kill a certain number of creatures -- without paying attention to the why. We want the gold, experience, achievement, or perhaps a quest reward, but we cannot be bothered with why we need to commit genocide on a population of wild animals. We would rather crit the mobs required for the quest than be crit by a wall of text.

I am as guilty of this as the next person: Oh, bring you murloc eyes ... Sure, why not? Kill a bunch of boars? Whatever. However, when I recently went back and finished off Loremaster, I found myself actually paying attention to some of the quests, and I realized there can be some great stories there. The Burning Crusade, Wrath, and soon Cataclysm have come a long way in terms of making the quests feel like they are leading somewhere, as opposed to killing these random mobs for no apparent reason. While working on Loremaster, I was like, "Wow, that was a neat little storyline in that quest chain!" It made me both impressed and a little sad, wondering about all the possible nuggets of story I had simply ignored just so I could level a couple of minutes sooner.

Do you actually read the quest text? Do you ever want to know why we have to kill the creatures we kill and why the NPCs want these seemingly inane items? Or do you just do it for the XP and money and could not care less?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Guest Posts

Loremaster achievement changes coming with Cataclysm

With the old world changing so drastically come The Shattering, there's been some question of how the Loremaster achievement might change in the wake of Cataclysm. Community Manager Zarhym has clarified this for us in a recent blog post. As he puts it, if you already have either Loremaster of Eastern Kingdoms or Loremaster of Kalimdor, those achievements will stay intact. However, if you're only partially through with those achievements, you may suffer a setback, as any quest that's being removed from the game will no longer count toward those achievements in progress. Therefore, it's a good idea to finish up the achievement if you can.

That said, it will be a little bit easier to get those Loremaster achievements come The Shattering. Instead of having one huge quest counter for each continent, patch 4.0.3a will introduce zone-specific quest achievements to the old world, similar to the ones that already exist for Outland and Northrend zones. Once you finish the zone-specific achievements for every zone on a given continent (minus the new Cataclysm zones, of course), you'll have the achievement. Even old-school Loremasters can get in on the action, as the zone quest achievements will still be available for them to complete.

While Zarhym didn't specifically outline it in his post, Loremaster of Cataclysm will be required for future Loremasters as well, although it's not clear whether that will start to be a requirement in patch 4.0.3a or at the launch of Cataclysm itself.

Filed under: News items, Achievements, Cataclysm

Cataclysm Beta: A walk-through of the all-new Westfall

This article has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider's pages.

Editor's Note: This article contains heavy plot spoilers for the upcoming Cataclysm expansion. Read at your own risk!

In the heart of every player who has leveled a human character lies a special place for the gentle, rolling plains of Westfall. Despite the fallow fields and barren hills, the region has a sort of natural beauty to it that many players have found irresistible, making it a favorite for Alliance players. Given its high popularity and my own nostalgia for the zone, I was a bit worried when Cataclysm was announced. What would happen to the great zone? Would it be so radically changed that it no longer resembled what it once was? Would it go by mostly untouched, leaving it unused in the wake of more polished zones?

Fear not! The zone has retained its raw beauty and has received a number of much needed upgrades. The town of Sentinel Hill is now much more secure, with a large wall and greater defenses. The layout of the zone remains mostly the same, with the exception of the Raging Chasm. Once the Alexston Farmstead, this area is a swirling vortex of wind and dust, a remnant of the cataclysm. It adds a new feature to the skyline of Westfall, as it towers into the air at a distance that can be seen from any corner of the zone.

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Filed under: Cataclysm, Guest Posts

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