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Blizzard developers discuss patch 5.2 and more

Patch 52 Developer fansite interviews
Last week was a flurry of preparation for patch 5.2's launch, including a whole host of developer interviews. WoW Insider had the opportunity to sit down and chat with Lead Quest Designer Dave Kosak, but there were plenty more interviews to be had as the week progressed. And just in case you happened to miss any of that developer excitement, we've put together a roundup of all the fan site interviews in one handy spot.
While the same developers may have done multiple interviews, each interview offers a different look at what's in store for patch 5.2 and beyond. It's certainly nice to see the developers out and about in the community and talking content -- and one thing's for certain, everyone is pumped for patch 5.2's release. Be sure to check out all of the interviews for the most in-depth look at patch 5.2 you can get.

Filed under: Blizzard, Interviews, Mists of Pandaria

The Instance interviews Chris Metzen, Christie Golden

The Instance interviews Chris Metzen, Christie Golden ANY
Looking forward to Tides of War, the next Warcraft novel slated to release later this month? The Instance, one of the longest-running Warcraft podcasts out there, has just released an interview with author Christie Golden as well as Chris Metzen himself. It's a spoiler-free interview, so those looking for a taste of what's to come in Tides of War can listen without fear of having the book utterly given away before it's even released.

More so than that, however, there is a lot of discussion on the nature of being female -- whether it's being a female writer in the sci-fi and fantasy industry, a female character in WoW, or a female character in the Blizzard universe, period. Given that Jaina sees so much character development in Tides of War, it's only natural that the conversation would turn that direction. And with Metzen in the fray as well as Golden, it's interesting to hear what both have to say about female characters and female character development in the Blizzard universe.

The interview runs about 45 minutes long. As always, The Instance is available to download on iTunes as well as Zune, so those of you looking for some interesting listening material on the drive to work can easily put it on your mobile media devices and listen on the go. All in all, it's a pretty fascinating peek into the minds behinds Tides of War, and while it's not the same as a book in your bag, it should help ease the waiting until Aug. 28 rolls around.

Filed under: Podcasting, News items, Mists of Pandaria

Tom Chilton talks about the in-game pet store

The guys over at The Instance podcast got a chance to talk to Blizzard's Tom Chilton about the recent decision to sell in-game noncombat pets for real money, and the interview is now up in the latest episode on their site. He talks first about the pets' development, and it sounds like they designed the pets thinking they'd be sold on a real-money store eventually. He says the price point was "arrived at by trying to figure out what it would have to be to make sense for us to spend time working on it." And he mentions the TCG and their loot prizes -- he says those were meant to be a bonus, and they ended up being a roundabout way for players to buy pets anyway, so Blizzard decided to go with this more direct plan.

He doesn't say much about the future, but he does say that Blizzard is planning on doing some "pet and plushie" deals, where you'll be able to buy a plushie from the Blizzard store, and get an in-game pet with it. For the game specifically, he mentions the guild transfer service that's coming (we heard about that back at BlizzCon -- you'll be able to server transfer an entire guild rather than do it account-by-account), but otherwise he tells players that the pet store is just a "side project" -- right now, it's not taking away from development at all, and if it does grow, Chilton says Blizzard would hire more people rather than using current developers. We'll have to see what happens in the future.

Filed under: Items, Blizzard, Making money, Interviews

WoW Insider Show live this afternoon at 3:30pm Eastern

Our podcast goes live again today as usual, and it should be a good one. We're going to welcome Rogue blogger Chase Christian back to the show, Turpster should be along for the ride as usual, and we're planning to have an old friend on who we haven't seen in a long time: Duncor may be making his long-awaited return, which should be a lot of fun. Of course we'll be talking all about patch 3.1, including how the dual spec system is working so far, some of the major class changes that made it through, and what's going on with the Argent Tournament. And we can't forget about the Ulduar cinematic -- that was a fun bit of lore that popped up out of nowhere this week.

The show starts at April 18, 2009 3:30 PM EDT over on our Ustream page (or just check the feed right down on the bottom of this post), and we'll be chatting live with you during the show as well as answering emails that you send to theshow@wow.com. We'll see you this afternoon!

And if you've got a little bit of time after the show, be sure to head on over to Rawrcast's Ustream page for their show, directly after ours. Our friend Stompalina is going to have none other than the inimitable Turpster, and apparently he'll be playing a game show that you can participate in. Turpster was also on The Instance earlier this week, too, so give that a listen if you just can't get enough of the T. Man that guy's like the Jaina of podcasts this week -- he's getting it on with everybody!

Update: That Rawrcast show with Turpster is apparently next week, April 25th. So if you thought you missed it on Saturday, no worries -- tune in next week to catch it live.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, WoW Insider Business, Odds and ends, Blizzard, WoW Insider Show

The Queue: Better than Bejeweled


Welcome back to The Queue, WoW Insider's daily Q&A column where the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Alex Ziebart will be your host today.

Good afternoon, ladies and gents! Let's waste no time and jump right in today, shall we?

Horris asked...


"I have a question. What's with the sudden change from red to yellow sockets between T7 and T8 for warrior tanks?"

Sockets have always been notorious for not being the optimal color for certain specs and classes. T7 seemed like the odd duck to me in that case, where the sockets were generally pretty good for most classes. Now they're back to being sort of weird like has almost always been the case.

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Filed under: The Queue

WoW Insider interviews 38 Studios' Brett Close about Azeroth Advisor

Last week we reported that 38 Studios, a company working on its own MMO property, had picked up the Azeroth Advisor, a custom newsletter directed towards players of World of Warcraft. At the time, we were slightly confused -- why would another gaming company want to purchase a guide written to promote and help players of a competitor's game? To get the answer, we went straight to the top, and sat down to talk with Brett Close, CEO of 38 Studios, about the reasons behind his company's purchase of the Azeroth Advisor and the technology behind it.

Last week, Curt Schilling, the company's founder, spoke on The Instance podcast about the buyout (that took place in May of this year), and what Mentor Media's newsletter and technology had to offer 38 Studios, so we asked Close about that, including how they planned to extend the custom newsletters to games that didn't have WoW's Armory and why they want to support players of a competitor's MMO. And we also talked about the fact that the newsletter is going free and why they decided to start giving it away.

The conversation with 38 Studios' CEO starts right after the break.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, Economy, Leveling, Guides, Interviews

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