Skip to Content

WoW Insider has the latest on the Mists of Pandaria!

Posts with tag settings

Warlords of Draenor: Nights may get darker

Night time comparison
Once upon a time, nightfall in Azeroth meant that things got truly dark--sometimes spookily so. For whatever reason, at some point Blizzard scaled back on the in-game lack of night lights, and brightened our nocturnal adventuring. Plenty of players have been clamoring for a good long while for a return to the dark and eerie Azerothian nights, and it seems as though their wishes may soon be coming true. In the following tweet, Lead Game Designer Cory Stockton indicates that some kind of darker night-time atmosphere is on its way potentially as soon as patch 6.0.
My personal hope is for some sort of toggle or slider in the graphics options, so individual players can choose how dark and foreboding they want their in-game landscapes to be. This has been a solution proposed by many, and I truly hope that's what's coming our way. Nonetheless, I'm eager to see whatever solution Blizzard has come up with.

Filed under: News items, Warlords of Draenor

Warcraft as the anything-goes fantasy

I was playing Diablo III last night after playing WoW, because I hate it when days happen and I see the sun, when it occurred to me that the two settings are very different in a variety of ways, and one of the big ones is this - you could (and have) basically fit the entire thematic kit of the Diablo setting inside WoW, but you couldn't do the same in reverse. There's not enough room, for lack of a better word, for all of Warcraft inside Sanctuary. What do I mean by that? Well, Diablo as a setting has specific themes - the war between Heaven and Hell, Sanctuary created by dissidents from both sides, the creation of humanity by said defectors, and Diablo's plans to enlist or subvert humans to fight in said war between these polar opposites.

Warcraft has a host of demons that seek to destroy all reality that can easily stand-in for the hosts of Hell from Diablo, and the risen dead we see in places like Tristram is if anything small potatoes compared to the plague of undeath we see in the Plaguelands. But WoW contains multitudes that have little to nothing to do with them - the Old Gods are a completely different kind of menace and one that there's no place for in Diablo. Similarly, the many races of the Warcraft setting have no place in the cosmology of the Diablo setting.

Part of the reason for this is the origin of each game - while both have Dungeons and Dragons in their DNA, Diablo has always been a more straightforward dungeon crawl while Warcraft was originally an RTS with deep roots in the orc vs. human gameplay element. As an RTS, and one with two competing factions, new units helped create diversity and gameplay, and as a result having these new units be of different races gave flavor to the setting. Diablo has always been about you, alone in a vast dunegon complex or infested region, destroying waves of foes by yourself or with a small group - the variety came in terms of different kinds of foes to destroy and the ways you did so.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard

Breakfast Topic: Bringing back the night

Stormwind at night
Have you ever thought it odd that when night falls in Azeroth, the stars appear, the sky darkens, but the landscape itself remains as bright as it was in broad daylight? Once upon a time, the nights in WoW looked something like the above screenshot. I can't pinpoint the source since it was so many years ago, but the original reasoning was it changed so people who could only play during the night wouldn't have to always play in the dark. The current official line is that it was purely an art decision.

There have been innumerable threads on the official forums pleading for the return of dark nights. Blizzard has been listening and in patch 5.4 they added a "test case" for darker nights, but only in Stormwind, Orgrimmar, and Vale of Eternal Blossoms. The difference is there, but you need to compare before and after screenshots to really notice it. It still doesn't scream "night has fallen."

Read more →

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

Video of Christie Golden's Long Island reading

I wasn't anywhere near Huntington, NY on Saturday, but our friend Medievaldragon from BlizzPlanet was, and he did stop by the Christie Golden reading at the Book Revue bookstore. He even brought videos back with him, and so if you're a Golden fan (she is a New York Times-bestselling author, after all) and want to see her reading from Arthas, there you go.

Apparently the reading was a pretty full house, too, and you can see from the video that there were all kinds of people there. Golden also says early in the video that Arthas is Blizzard's first big bestseller, and she repeats what we've heard before: that Blizzard loves having her write for them and she loves coming up with stories from their settings. The only big bit of news for fans from the reading is that while Blizzard is producing three different Warcraft books (of which Arthas is the first), they won't be a trilogy at all, just stand-alone stories. Big thanks to Medievaldragon once again for stopping by the event and grabbing video for those of us who couldn't go.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Lore

The limits of Video Mode Ultra


I think I've found the limits of Video Mode Ultra -- when we first hard in the 3.1 patch notes that Blizzard was adding in a superspecial video mode for high-end computers to use, I was excited. I just recently "updated" my PC (read: "it broke and I had to spend a lot of time and money to fix it"), and it's been running like butter, so I was interested in putting it to the test. The day after the patch dropped, I flipped the switch to Ultra, and had no problems -- until this past Saturday. While wandering around Dalaran, I noticed my framerate had dropped quite a bit. I lowered a couple of the environmental settings just a bit and I was fine again, but apparently even with a 2.5 GHz quad core CPU, 4gb of RAM, and a GeForce 9600GT, Video Mode Ultra is still just a little too hardcore for me.

What's interesting is that I ran Wintergrasp a few times before having those slowdowns in Dalaran, and never had a problem. But then again, Blizzard did say that they had spent a lot of time making sure Wintergrasp was streamlined enough to run huge battles with minimal slowdown, so maybe Dalaran didn't get that same makeover. And I should say as well that I had no issues anywhere else in the world -- even my Naxx run the other evening looked perfect with Ultra flipped on.

Having a "future" graphics mode on PC games is nothing new -- for most games, the highest graphics setting is usually "experimental," so there's a little leeway in terms of release time (the game looks good with current hardware, but even better with next year's gear). And Video Mode Ultra is just that -- Blizzard trying to send a shot across the bow at those who are already saying the graphics look a little dated.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Blizzard, Hardware

How to turn off Achievement Spam


I love everything about Achievements. I love getting them, striving for them, perusing them, hearing about them and watching other people get them. (And, obviously, I love writing about them.) They have really added more enjoyment to my gameplay. I loved hearing "Grats noob" in guildchat when I hit 30 on my Mage. I even love it when I get spammed by a bunch of guildies achieving a Jenkins title at the same time. But not everybody does.

Some are turning off their Achievement Announcements. Whether it is Achievement envy or an aversion to fun (yes, I'm not objective), they have figured out how to turn off being notified every time someone in the vicinity loads up their pets and Tricks or Treats for the first time. It's easy to do:
  1. Right click on the chat tab that you want to remove the notifications from.
  2. Select Settings.
  3. Select Other.
  4. Uncheck Achievement Announce.
  5. For turning off Guildchat announcements, select Chat and then uncheck Guild Announce -- but this turns off all Guild announcements.
(Edit: Updated for accuracy. Will update for guildchat when the servers come back up.)
Once Hallow's End is over and the flurry of easy Achievements have been conquered, the spam will die down. The messages will definitely not be a constant throughout Wrath. But, even if it were, I'd still be happily reading about my guildies and the people around me achieving things. But maybe that's because I'm a casual player in a guild full of hardcore raiders -- I get to read about the Achievements I will probably never earn. I admit it. Sometimes I play vicariously.

How do you feel about the Achievement Spam?

Filed under: Tips, How-tos, Achievements

How to increase your camera distance


It seems to me like we've covered this before, but I can't find it, so it must have been a while. The standard camera distance in World of Warcraft isn't bad, especially if your computer is right at the system requirements-- you can usually see most of what's happening and yet it's close enough to keep you focused on your character.

But if you've got a really nice PC and, like me, want to see a little farther than normal (or as in the picture above, a lot farther than normal), there are a few easy ways to increase your camera distance, as Dr. Laxative found over on LJ.

ImprovedCamera is probably the easiest-- it's an addon that will give you a slider to increase camera distance up to the max allowed range. You can also see, in the description on that site, that there are ways to edit your WoW files and increase the max range even farther. By editing the "SET cameraDistanceD" number in your config.wtf file, you can change one of the preset lengths for the camera, and then cycle through them with Home and End. You don't even really need an addon to tweak your settings-- type "/script SetCVar("cameraDistanceMax",30)" (or whatever distance you want) into the chat console, and then you should be able to scroll out to the max distance that you just set.

If your computer's not that great, doing this stuff will definitely introduce slowdown and pop-in to your graphics, so run these commands with care. But if you've got the gear for it, you can see Azeroth at a whole new distance.

Filed under: Tricks, How-tos, Odds and ends, Add-Ons

Around Azeroth

Around Azeroth

Featured Galleries

It came from the Blog: Occupy Orgrimmar
Midsummer Flamefest 2013
Running of the Orphans 2013
World of Warcraft Tattoos
HearthStone Sample Cards
HearthStone Concept Art
Yaks
It came from the Blog: Lunar Lunacy 2013
Art of Blizzard Gallery Opening

 

Categories

Joystiq

Massively

Engadget