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Posts with tag race-class-combo

Totem Talk: Choosing your enhancement shaman's race as of 4.0.6


Every week, WoW Insider brings you Totem Talk for elemental, enhancement, and restoration shaman. Do your likes include bladed weapons, the elements, and fights with little to no movement or target switching? So does Josh Myers, new kid on the block and now host of Totem Talk: Enhancement!

Few things in Azeroth spawn more debate than racial choices. Some sides argue that if you don't min-max your racial choices, you're the reason your guild hasn't downed heroic Lich King, while the other side maintains that if you're playing a character for three hours a day, it should at least look appealing to you. Personally, my view is that everyone should be a tauren, but I'm an outlier in the great race debates. This issue of Totem Talk will be focusing on racials as used by enhancement shaman, using the redesigned racials in patch 4.0.6. This is purely for information purposes; I don't want anyone loading in to Azeroth feeling ashamed at their racial choice. Unless they chose male draenei.

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Filed under: Shaman

What's happening with those new race/class combos, anyway?

You might remember that, a while back, we got two quests that introduced three of Cataclysm's new race-class combinations -- tauren priests, tauren paladins, and night elf mages. Tauren paladins even got their own flavor name: Sunwalkers. Seems like things were really rolling along at full steam to integrate these new combos into the game seamlessly.

The weird part is that we haven't heard anything else about the subject for ... quite a while now, actually. Kisirani hasn't made any posts about the new combos since her comment about Sunwalkers, and we haven't seen any new quests or in-game events that acted as introductions, either. This makes me a little worried. Was this plan abandoned?

I'm trying not to be too hasty. We won't be able to play them before Cataclysm anyway, so some of the new combos may be introduced over time via the long pre-Cataclysm world event. especially those that require explanation no matter what. Case in point: I couldn't see them adding dwarf shaman without tying in the Wildhammer clan somehow (Zarhym just popped up today saying that the Alliance would be supporting the Wildhammers in one of Cataclysm's new battlegrounds, so that must mean something).

But what about the other poor slobs, the combinations that just "kind of make sense" at first glance? Are they doomed to just show up and act as if they were always there? No, Archdruid Tuj'uku, you were not always a member of the Cenarion Circle. And you, Archmage Skullmaul over there. Are you digging through my trash? I'm calling the cops.

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm will destroy Azeroth as we know it. Nothing will be the same. In WoW.com's Guide to Cataclysm you can find out everything you need to know about WoW's third expansion. From Goblins and Worgens to Mastery and Guild changes, it's all there for your cataclysmic enjoyment.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Cataclysm

Arcane Brilliance: The Mage of 2009

The internet's magiest weekly mage column, Arcane Brilliance would like to wish you and yours a very magetastic holiday season. Unless you and yours are warlocks. In which case Arcane Brilliance hopes the holiday season comes to your Christmas party and punches you in the face.

Every year, as the end of that twelve-month block draws near, Arcane Brilliance likes to take an unbiased look back at the events that captured our collective imagination. Heh. Get it? "I-MAGE-ination?" Holy crap Arcane Brilliance is clever. And indefensibly fond of bad puns.

So what did the year of our lord 2009 hold for those of us who prefer the scent of barbecued sheep to pretty much any odor ever and think strudel is a perfectly acceptable meal choice for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and a meal I like to call the "Evocation's-on-cooldown-snack?"

Join me after the break for all the highlights, presented in vaguely chronological order.

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Filed under: Mage, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Features, Classes, (Mage) Arcane Brilliance

Breakfast topic: Who inspired you to play what?


When they first come to the game, many players instinctively know what they want to play. For me, my first love was, and ever shall be, my female tauren druid, the lollopy-gaited, bemused-emote, hoarse-voiced heifer. I can't even explain why she appeals to me so much, because her casting animations are relatively boring, and the female tauren voice actress sounds like she's nursing a 40-pack-a-day habit. It matters not. She is loved.

When it comes to other characters, though, I can usually point to someone or something else that inspired me to roll that alt. Big Red Kitty made me want to play a dwarf hunter (now level 67) with a Frostsaber Pride Watcher. This video made a tauren shaman look awesome, so now I've got one at 71. And it was World of Roguecraft, oddly enough, that made a male undead warlock (as opposed to rogue) look like it could be fun; the scene with the warlock and rogue taking a stroll around the Lordaeron ruins with the warlock's imp toddling beside him, for whatever reason, sold it for me. When I look around my list of alts, for each I can name something or someone who just made that particular race/class combination look cool. Who or what inspired you to play the races and classes you're playing right now?

Filed under: Odds and ends, Breakfast Topics

WoW Insider Show Episode 107: Fighting the fanboy


Here's our podcast from last weekend, when both Amanda Dean and Adam Holisky tuned in to join Turpster and I and talk about the biggest stories of the past week in Warcraft. Unfortunately, it was a bad day for Skype, so we had some rough tumbles with lag and audio problems, but we did manage to get in some good insight about Matt Low's thoughts on why you probably shouldn't play a Priest, the incoming lore reasons on why those new race/class combos are possible, Adam's challenge to Blizzard and their veiled release information, and what our faction transfer survey came up with in terms of conclusions. Despite the technical issues, I'm told it was still a pretty good show, so tune in below to hear it for yourself.

This week, we're going live at a special time (and yes, apologies to the guy who last week that we were switching around times constantly -- this is only because I'm embarking on a cross-country move later in the week, and the rest of the year we should always be found on Saturdays). We'll be live this Wednesday evening, September 16th, 2009 6:00 PM EDT right over on our Ustream page. I know that's probably a little late for you EU folks, but the last few shows have been earlier than usual, so this one's for the Americans getting home from work. And of course if you can't make that time, we'll definitely have the show on the iTunes feed later on for your listening enjoyment. See you then.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Podcasts, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Humor, WoW Insider Show, Cataclysm

WoW Insider Show this afternoon at 3:30pm Eastern


Our podcast is back on the air yet again this afternoon -- Turpster will join Amanda Dean, Adam Holisky and I to talk about the biggest posts of the past week, including (but not limited to) why even Priests dislike being Priests, the new race/class combos and how they'll be explained, why Blizzard is so secretive (and why they probably shouldn't be), and what kinds of things we learned from that faction transfer survey. And of course we'll answer your emails -- you can send those along to theshow@wow.com anytime.

It all starts up tomorrow at September 12th, 2009 3:30 PM EDT right over on our Ustream page (or you can tune in on the embedded feed right after the break), so do be sure to join us if you're available. And of course, as usual, we'll probably have a little music during the preshow, and a little fun during the aftershow (where we turn off the recording and just chat with the kind folks in the chat channel about whatever comes up. See you there!

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Filed under: Priest, Analysis / Opinion, Podcasting, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, WoW Insider Show

All the World's a Stage: The new character experience in Cataclysm


All the World's a Stage, and all the orcs and humans merely players. They have their stories and their characters; and one player in his time plays many roles.

As you know, the Cataclysm is going to bring major changes to the whole world of Azeroth. There will only be 5 new zones for leveling above 80 and one new zone for each new race -- the rest of the work they're doing involves changing the old zones, bringing them up to the standards of zones in The Burning Crusade and Wrath of the Lich King, adding new quests that are more appropriate to the current timeline, and completely rebuilding the areas that just didn't work so well.

You are also probably aware that this is a much-needed improvement. The 1 - 60 leveling process (except for the draenei or blood elf starting areas) has long been fraught with serious flaws. Going through it the first time wasn't so bad, since exploring everything felt so new, but doing it the third and fourth times meant sheer boredom. I remember many times going to a zone, completing many or all of the quests there, and leaving without ever feeling as though I had really "been" there. Except for a few real gems, quests mostly involved spending a lot of time running long distances in order to kill more nameless bad guys -- they felt more like pest control than adventure. Just being there seemed to remove me from the story of Azeroth, and dump me in some other world where there was nothing important happening. Vast stretches of land on the Azeroth map meant absolutely nothing to me as a roleplayer: no character, no story, no meaning.

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Filed under: Quests, Expansions, The Burning Crusade, Leveling, RP, Alts, Wrath of the Lich King, All the World's a Stage (Roleplaying), Cataclysm

Why your (race) can't be a (class)

Kisirani is tearing it up on the forums recently -- ever since she dropped that Tauren Paladins would be called Sunwalkers, she has kicked off a round of speculation and excitement about all of the new race/class combinations soon to be available to us in Cataclysm. But the number one question on everyone's lips seems to be: "If (race) can be a (class), why can't my (race) be a (class)?"

For that, Kisirani has an answer: because Blizzard doesn't want it to be. I have to say, I'm impressed so far with how Blizzard has tied these new class and race combinations into the lore of the world. We've only seen a little bit of how they'll do it, but while these new class/race combos could have easily just fallen into fan service (and that's definitely what I thought they were when Blizzard introduced them -- they'd abandoned all semblance of lore just to give players more options to play), it definitely doesn't seem that's the case. According to Kisirani, Blizzard is still thinking seriously about what races and classes fit together, and presumably all of the new combinations (yes, even Human Hunters, can't wait to see that one) will be explained in the end.

Good to hear. Of course, the reason they're including these combinations is partly fan service, and it's likely also meant to help folks rerolling to see all the new Cataclysm content. But knowing that there'll be lore behind all of the new combos is pretty darn exciting.


World of Warcraft: Cataclysm will destroy Azeroth as we know it. Nothing will be the same. In WoW.com's Guide to Cataclysm you can find out everything you need to know about WoW's third expansion. From Goblins and Worgens to Mastery and Guild changes, it's all there for your cataclysmic enjoyment.

Filed under: Human, Gnomes, Tauren, Hunter, Paladin, Priest, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Lore, Classes, Cataclysm

Flavor names for new race/class combos

Unsurprisingly, the hottest forum topic upon the announcement of new race/class combinations in Cataclysm isn't an analytical discussion of their racial strengths and weaknesses -- it's pun names for Tauren Paladins. Well, Kisirani, illustrious World Event Designer and Mistress of Flavor, popped into one such thread to give the actual name that Tauren Paladins will be given, a la Blood Knights -- "Sunwalkers."

A great name, and somehow less menacing than "Blood Knights." One has to wonder if this sets a precedent for the other new combinations, too. Could we be seeing Forsaken Hunters phased in via quests as Dark Rangers? Dwarf Shamans as Wildhammers? Blood Elf Warriors as Sunreavers? Dwarf Mages as Runeweavers?

Kisirani indicated that the new combos would be phased in gradually and with ample explanation for each one via new quests and NPCs, and we've already seen the start of those with the An Injured Colleague and A Cautious Return quests added on the PTRs. There are lots of great flavor opportunities here, and I hope that Blizzard takes the time to introduce each and every new combo in their own unique way. Then again, with Kisirani at the helm of the whole thing, I doubt we have much to worry about.


World of Warcraft: Cataclysm will destroy Azeroth as we know it. Nothing will be the same. In WoW.com's Guide to Cataclysm you can find out everything you need to know about WoW's third expansion. From Goblins and Worgens to Mastery and Guild changes, it's all there for your cataclysmic enjoyment.

Filed under: Cataclysm

Breakfast Topic: What do you think of new race and class combos?

One of the big things announced at BlizzCon were the new class and race combinations. These were originally datamined from patch 3.2.2 and include everything from Gnome Priests and Goblin Rogues to Worgen Druids. I'm especially excited about the last one.

For years, the race you played has been indelibly linked with the class and defined how you play the game. Say, for example, you like playing Night Elves, you're limited class-wise to rolling Druid, Priests, Hunters, Rogues and Warriors. On the other hand, if it's a specific class then you are sometimes limited to a particular race. So Draenei are the only Alliance race which can current become Shamans while the same is true, Horde-side, for Blood Elves becoming Paladins.

From a lore perspective, there is little preventing any of these combos. This is especially true as Azeroth expands and the game evolves. But readers, this is new territory for us, as WoW becomes more open. What do you think of the possibility of lore-centric or even playable class and race combinations?

Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Shaman, Patches, Blizzard, Breakfast Topics, Expansions, Draenei, Blood Elves, Lore, Classes, Wrath of the Lich King, Cataclysm

BlizzCon 2009: Cataclysm race-class combo matrix online

With official word that there will be new race-class combinations in World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, Blizzard has posted the official matrix of what races will have what classes available to them. Big surprises so far include Worgen Druid and Goblin Shaman!

The full matrix is above, and the text list below. All of our previous speculation was correct, so this should give rerollers plenty of opportunity to experience the new, shattered realm of Azeroth!

  • Human Hunter
  • Orc Mage
  • Night Elf Mage
  • Blood Elf Warrior
  • Dwarf Shaman
  • Dwarf Mage
  • Undead Hunter
  • Tauren Paladin
  • Tauren Priest
  • Gnome Priest
  • Troll Druid

BlizzCon 2009 is here! WoW.com has continuing coverage, bringing you the latest in Cataclysm news, live blogs, galleries, and reports right from the convention floor. Check out WoW.com's Guide to BlizzCon for the latest!

Filed under: Human, Night Elves, Dwarves, Gnomes, Orcs, Tauren, Undead, Trolls, Draenei, Blood Elves, BlizzCon, Cataclysm, Worgen, Goblin

A discussion in defense of new race/class combinations

There's been a lot of news about possible new features arriving with the upcoming Cataclysm expansion. I covered one of those recently, that being the possibility of new race/class combinations, ones that were previously unavailable to player characters.

Now, this feature would actually make a ton of sense, especially taking the following into consideration:

- We've had the same 9 classes available for going on 5 years now.
- With new races being added in Cataclysm, there's almost certainly no hero class.
- It's quite likely that the new races will be unable to be Death Knights, at least at first.
- The leaked information from MMO-Champion suggests that Azeroth is getting a makeover, graphically and design-wise.
- The Paid Faction Switch service is coming soon, and adding these new combinations would bring almost 100% parity between factions in terms of classes available.
- Blizzard has been tossing quests that hint at these new combinations into the past few patches and onto the PTR.

But of course, the WoW community is a fickle beast, and what they seem to be focusing on here tends not to be the gameplay benefits of adding new race/class combinations, but the "lore-breaking" aspects of said combinations.

Well, I don't think any of these are unreasonable, and in fact many of them have precedents in lore. To make the discussion more interesting, I've brought in my lore-hound colleague Daniel Whitcomb, and we'll expound on each new possible option to give you clear reasons why they're not only plausible, but likely. On top of that, I'm bringing in our class columnists to give their insight on the new choices and explain their pros and cons in terms of gameplay!

Let's start, shall we?

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Filed under: Druid, Hunter, Mage, Paladin, Priest, Shaman, Warrior, Expansions, Lore, Cataclysm

Possible new race/class combinations datamined

Here's another whopper from Handclaw at Scrolls of Lore, who first uncovered the goblin and worgen masks a month ago.

You may remember the quest added to Thunder Bluff recently, where two druids talk about the merits of following the Sun instead of the Moon. Well, on the 3.2.2 PTR, another new quest has been added, this time to Darnassus, where a Highborne mage asks for an audience with Tyrande to offer his services as a mage.

While many speculated that the Thunder Bluff quest indicated a new class, they may be more correct than they think.

In the Patch 3.2.2 PTR files, a number of new race/class combination NPCs were discovered. The data mined from MMO-Champion seems to indicate that several races will have the ability to roll classes previously unavailable to them. Unlike our confirmed addition of the new races, it is only speculation that these combinations will be playable, but with the addition of the class-related quests with each additional patch, it seems quite likely.

The current list of these combinations is after the jump. Several races should prepare to jump for joy.

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Filed under: News items, Expansions, Cataclysm

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