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Posts with tag twilight-highlands

Know Your Lore: NPC evolution from Wrath to Cataclysm and beyond

The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how -- but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.

Wrath of the Lich King saw the introduction of several elements that furthered the incorporation of lore into the game. Phased quest chains allowed players to actually see their effect on the zones. Cinematic cutscenes made it feel like you were playing through a movie. The faction leaders of the world were suddenly far more active than they'd ever been before. But those were the major, blowout moments that made the storytelling work. What most didn't quite recognize were the subtle efforts of the lowly NPC.

In classic WoW, players literally had to walk up to NPCs and speak to them to engage them in conversation. In The Burning Crusade, that changed slightly -- NPCs now recognized players as they walked by, according to their reputation. In Wrath, suddenly NPCs were not only recognizing players, but they were whispering players, recognizing players. Prior efforts by a player were acknowledged, even if it was just a simple "I remember you."

What Wrath of the Lich King began was a revolution in WoW gameplay that would spin into full-out overdrive with the launch of Cataclysm. The lowly NPC was no longer an unimportant figure; he was a comrade in arms, a fellow hero, or a taskmaster -- and he made certain to let you know it.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Does Cataclysm have too much potential content?

I was running around Uldum recently, doing the Ramkahen quests on yet another new 85, when it occurred to me that Uldum itself feels like the story has barely been told. Sure, we run around doing odd jobs for Harrison Jones, then we infiltrate the Halls of Origination and turn off the big doomsday device Algalon was going to use on us. And sure, we eventually crash into the Vortex Pinnacle and Throne of the Four Winds to stop Al'Akir and his minions. But what about the connection between Silithus and Uldum?

We know that Ahn'Qiraj was a lost titan city and that the Tol'vir were assigned to it, that entities like Ossirian were once watchers like Setesh. (Setesh's model is nearly identical to the Anubisath that patrol AQ today.) It just feels like, with C'thun obviously driving Cho'gall around even after his "death," that there's room for a whole raid just dealing with the lost connections between AQ and Uldum. The lost passages of the titan research facility that the Qiraji took over? (We know from Uldaman and Ulduar that titan constructions tend to go on for miles and miles.)

And that's hardly even the top of the list of raid instances we could see. A lot of us hoped for and expected an Abyssal Maw raid of some kind. There's a lot of talk about another Caverns of Time instance or raid with Nozdorumu's return. And I can't be the only one who keeps thinking that Grim Batol has entire layers we haven't seen yet. Heck, there are whole terraces in Deepholm we visit once and never go back to, and that whole zone is massive and cries out for more.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Lore, Cataclysm

The Queue: Fused with infinity

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

Mike Sacco was raving about Terraria so much all weekend that I was pretty excited to get to log on and rock some multiplayer with him and Mat McCurley. I log onto their server with my character, wearing some pretty sweet sweatpants and a hooded sweatshirt. I flee through the night from zombies, flying eyeballs, and soul devourers to find Mike's character leaping carelessly around his godstone-hewn mountain fortress with his rocket shoes, wearing crimson crystalline battle armor that makes him look like a shinier version of that guy from Viewtiful Joe. I think his name was Viewtiful Joe.

Is that what it's like to be a newbie in WoW again?

mgall726 asked:

Do you think current Archaeology epics will scale to still be as good as raid drops in 4.2? Like having Zin'rokh become a 378 epic? If not, do you think they'll be adding more epics that are on par with the new raids to make archy still be worth it for end-game?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Queue

Gold Capped: Goodbye, level 84 crafting alts

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Gold Capped, in which Basil "Euripides" Berntsen aims to show you how to make money on the auction house. Email Basil with your questions, comments, or hate mail!

When Cataclysm launched, it brought with it a new design for low-level crafting alts. In order to progress to the most desirable items, players had to get access to a "trader" NPC located in a phased area of the Twilight Highlands. This could not be done until level 84. A lot of auctioneers leveled a lot of alts they otherwise wouldn't have just so they could max out professions. I, however, was not one of them. And my laziness (or prescience?) seems to have paid off, because as of patch 4.1, all the previously locked profession content is now available from your friendly local profession trainers!

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Filed under: Economy, Cataclysm, Gold Capped

Know Your Lore: Garona: A study on stealth and treachery, part 2

The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how -- but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.
Human or orc... An orc would say that it's a human hand -- too slender to be really useful, not enough muscle to hold an ax or bash a skull in properly -- too pale, too weak, and too ugly. You see the parts of me that are orcish. My orcish superiors, and all other orcs, see the parts of me that are human. I am both, and neither, and considered an inferior being by both sides.
-- The Last Guardian

Garona spent the first half of her life unaware of her true bloodline -- and unaware of the mental controls placed in her mind by the Shadow Council. After escaping Doomhammer's forces, she fled, gave birth to her son Med'an, and then handed him over to an old friend for safekeeping. It wasn't that she didn't want to raise the boy; it was that she thought she was a danger to the child.

There were two moments that stuck with Garona the most. The first was that moment in Karazhan's tower, in which she witnessed herself killing King Llane. The second was the moment in which that horrifying vision came to pass -- and there was nothing she could do to stop it. The combination of these two events made Garona realize, in terror, that she seemed to be destined to play the part of the villain, no matter what she had to say to the contrary.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

WoW Rookie: A primer on Cataclysm reputations

There are eight new reputation factions in Cataclysm. Six of those reputations are available to the Alliance or Horde, respectively. Each of those factions offers different items or gear to adventurers who work their way through the reputations. Many offer epic gear to players who have achieved exalted reputation.

You can pick up well over 1,000 reputation by wearing each faction's tabard into a level 85 dungeon; heroic dungeons grant a little more, of course. Some factions have daily quests that will help you fly through the ranks even faster. But the tough part can be deciding which reputations to work on first.

Let's take a tour of those factions and see what kind of epics or notable gear is offered by each. If you see something that's especially appropriate to your class or role, that's probably a good hint that you should start there.

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Cataclysm Daily Quests, Part 5: Uldum, Twilight Highlands and daily priorities

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

Welcome to part 5 of the epic guide to Cataclysm daily quests! Previously, we discussed profession dailies, Therazane dailies, Tol Barad permanent dailies, and Tol Barad dailies received by the faction in control of Tol Barad. Today, we'll wrap up the last few dailies in Uldum and Twilight Highlands and then discuss getting the most out of your Cataclysm daily limit.

Uldum dailies There are only two dailies in Uldum, one infinitely preferable to the other. The first is a short, sweet, entertaining quest called Thieving Little Pluckers. It's fast, fun to do, located near the center of Uldum where you port in, and awards 150 reputation with Ramkahen, otherwise known as the guys who'll sell you a camel when you hit exalted.

The other, Fire From the Sky, is the daily version of the quest by the same name that is part of the Harrison Jones quest line. This was hands down the most broken, miserable quest I had to do on my way to 85. It involves using a cannon vehicle to shoot slow-moving bombs at tiny, moving soldiers on a large map. Initially, all players shared the available mobs; grouped players' kills did not count for other group members; and worst, you couldn't see any bombs except your own. The group you'd been oh so carefully targeting would blow up seconds before your bomb hit, leading to massive nerd rage.

Luckily, this has been hotfixed. Mobs are still shared, but group kills count for everyone, and all players' bomb targets are visible on the map. I still advise skipping it as soon as you get the associated achievement.

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Filed under: Cataclysm, Guest Posts

Spiritual Guidance: Levels 80 to 85 as a priest, plus recent beta changes


Every week, WoW Insider brings you Spiritual Guidance for discipline, holy and shadow priests. Dawn Moore covers healing for discipline and holy priests and makes the occasional StarCraft 2 reference. If you ask her, she'll tell you disc priests are like sentries and holy priests are medevacs.

There is a lot to cover in Spiritual Guidance this week, so I'll be diving right in to the content. I was going to outsource my creative introduction to Mr. Fox Van Allen, but he wanted to be paid entirely in red M&Ms, so we'll just have to do without.

We'll be covering two topics today. The first will be to cover the latest build released on the Cataclysm beta earlier this week. There were some large changes made to AoE healing that affect both holy and discipline priests in different ways. Second, I've written up my advice on leveling from 80 to 85 as a healing priest.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

Cataclysm Beta: Testing Halfus Wyrmbreaker in Bastion of Twilight

Sunday afternoon, a couple of raid encounters in the Cataclysm beta were activated so they could be tested. I managed to get in on both of them, and I'll cover my experience and initial thoughts regarding Halfus Wyrmbreaker. He is the first boss that can be found in the Bastion of Twlight. The entrance can be found in the southwest corner of Twilight Highlands at the top of an extremely high pillar.

I don't have much in regards to the lore and stuff, but something about this boss tells me that he controls and restrains drakes (or wyrms).

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding

The OverAchiever: Reputation factions in Cataclysm


Every Thursday, The Overachiever shows you how to work toward those sweet achievement points. This week, we find ourselves the designated butt-monkey of several new factions.

Hello again, fellow achievement-hunters. This week we're going to finish up with a look at the new reputation factions available in Cataclysm and a quick look at new world events.

"There aren't any new world events," you point out.

That's what makes it so quick. Although this goes without saying in any article discussing new achievements, there are a few spoilers in here discussing how you meet and work with various Cataclysm factions. If you'd rather stay unspoiled about upcoming quests, don't go past the cut.

45 Exalted Reputations
This is now the highest reputation-related achievement in the game. Interestingly, there is not a new title associated with it; you'll still receive The Exalted at 40 Exalted Reputations, although it's possible that it's just a placeholder. Then again, if you already have 40 exalted reputations, getting 45 should be very simple during Cataclysm, as there'll be at least six new reputation factions available. I'm not sure a new title's going to be in the cards as a result.

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Filed under: Achievements, The Overachiever

Lichborne: Death knight beta diaries, part 4: Two-handed frost and other beta minutae


Welcome to Lichborne, your weekly source for news, guides, tips and opinions on the death knight class.

In the latest beta patch, Blizzard was so kind as to bump the level cap up to 85, in addition to opening Uldum and Twilight Highlands, the last two major leveling zones in the expansion. Unfortunately, neither zone is itemized, but more on that later. In my testing this past week, I've delved in the long-dead, dormant spec of two-handed frost. The spec was officially killed off (at least in the sense of having competitive DPS) in the latter part of Wrath, when Blizzard decided to make frost the official spec of dual wielding. However, with the advent of Cataclysm, that is changing. With blood becoming a dedicated tanking tree, it left unholy as the only two-handed weapon tree. Recognizing that some players might dislike the pet-tending aspect of unholy, Blizzard decided to support two-handed weaponry in the frost tree once again.

That said, deciding to support it and succeeding at it are two different things, and in addition, there seems to be a lot of people who are still confused as to whether or not Blizzard plans to support it. You can put your mind at ease now though. Very recently, Ghostcrawler (lead systems designer) confirmed that, yes, Blizzard is supporting the two-handed weapon playstyle for the frost tree.

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Filed under: Death Knight, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Cataclysm Beta: Twilight Highlands and Uldum galleries

Twilight Highlands and Uldum aren't technically open yet in the Cataclysm beta, but when have invisible walls ever stopped someone who really wanted to get into a zone? Resourceful tester Lemon King sends us these monster galleries of questing through both zones, although both are unfinished (especially Uldum). Even so, they look beautiful, and there are some nice surprises in the quests. Obviously, spoilers abound!

Check out the galleries by clicking below.

Filed under: Cataclysm

Official Cataclysm site update: The Twilight Highlands

Those of you watching the live stream last night may have noticed a fly-by of the Twilight Highlands zone, including some strange rock formations, and the frustrations of that ever-present invisible wall. Thankfully, we now know a little more about what's behind that invisible wall in the Twilight Highlands zone courtesy of an update to the official Cataclysm website posted today. Some highlights from the post:
  • The Dragonmaw orcs have a presence in the Highlands, and "their knowledge of dragons and warfare is of unquestionable importance, especially amidst the chaos of the Cataclysm." This explains a little of why they would join up with the Horde, though I'm still wondering how Alexstrasza feels about the whole situation.
  • The Wildhammer dwarves also make an appearance here, and have begun to consider allying with Stormwind and Ironforge "thanks to the entreaties of their cousins, the Bronzebeard clan."
  • It looks like the red dragonflight's days of haunting Grim Batol and the surrounding areas are numbered -- the black dragonflight are taking over.
  • The Twilight's Hammer cult has relocated here due to the presence of an Old God.
For more information, highlights and screenshots, check out the post on the official Cataclysm website.

Filed under: Cataclysm

Blizzard releases information on new Cataclysm Twin Peaks battleground


PvP fans can rejoice -- Blizzard released information today regarding the new Twin Peaks battleground today, located inside the Eastern Kingdoms' new Twilight Highlands zone. Twin Peaks is described as a "10 vs. 10, capture-the-flag style battleground" reminiscent of Warsong Gulch.

Alliance players will be called to the defense of the Wildhammer Dwarves, who are fighting to regain control of their home territory of Grim Batol. The Horde will be forging a new coalition with the Dragonmaw Clan, who seek to take hold on the territory as well.

More details are beyond the break.

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Filed under: PvP, Cataclysm

BlizzCon 2009: Entering a brave new world

Chris Metzen, speaking during the World of Warcraft preview panel, revealed that Cataclysm will introduce seven new zones, on top of revamping the old world. This revamp changes both the game mechanics (adding the ability to fly anywhere) and the lore, as old zones are forever changed, both geographically and territorially. These new zones are:
  • Gilneas
  • Twilight Highlands
  • Deepholm
  • The Lost Isles
  • Sunken City of Vashj'ir
  • Mount Hyjal
  • Uldum

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Filed under: Blizzard, News items, Lore, BlizzCon, Cataclysm

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