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Posts with tag twinking

Twinking for my own sanity

I have a lot of alts. Not as many as some, but more than most. I have five level 70s, two characters over 50, and two others that sort of float around depending on what I feel like playing that week. Needless to say, I'm pretty sick of the lower level content. I've done it so many times by now that I'll be very, very happy when I never need to see it again.

Until Blizzard decides to let us take a character straight from level 1 to level 70, I'm pretty much stuck going through that content. I enjoy learning to play new characters, but I don't think just grinding out quests does that for you. I would really like a 70 of each class so I can learn how to play them in dungeons and eventually the lower tier raids like Karazhan. Since I can't skip all of that content I've done endlessly already, I try to make my trip to 70 as easy as possible.

It was when I started levelling my Frost Mage that I realized just how far I will go to speed up those early levels. About 5 minutes after I rolled that Mage, I equipped her with a set of pre-enchanted gear that gave her just under 100 Frost Damage, and roughly an extra 400 hit points. I was basically invincible, and I loved it. It was expensive, but so worth it to blaze through those first few levels. Taking out moonkin in two Frostbolts was strangely soothing.

That's the most money I've put into a brand new character so far, but I would probably do it again in the future just to bypass that really early stuff. My question for all of you is: What's the most you've put into a twink that fresh, just for levelling and not stomping WSG?

Filed under: Mage, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Leveling

15 Minutes of Fame: Inside PvP twinking

15 Minutes of Fame is our look at World of Warcraft players of all shapes and sizes – both the renowned and the relatively anonymous. Tip us off to players you'd like to hear more about at 15minutesoffame (at) wowinsider (dot) com.

Despite grumbles from some players, PvP twinking – playing at max level of a particular PvP battlegrounds bracket, with the best available gear and enchants for that level – has been legitimized by Blizzard as a valid meta-game within WoW. While most players I've spoken with don't seem to have strong feelings about twinking one way or the other, neither do they seem to understand why someone would be interested in getting into it. What's the attraction?

We at 15 Minutes of Fame have an undeniable curiosity when it comes to meta-gamers and players who've carved out their own niches in the immense world that is World of Warcraft. That's how we came across Angrenous of Shadow Council, a PvP-aholic who runs warriors in almost every PvP bracket. Here's a player with his eyes wide open to all the various restrictions and limitations of WoW's PvP experience – and having a blast careening around in it.

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Filed under: Features, Interviews, 15 Minutes of Fame

The Art of War(craft): Twinkage part II

Last week, we discussed the matter of twinks and PvP. In many occasions, twinks exist purely to PvP, dominating lower-bracket Battlegrounds with their über-gear. In fact, there is no shortage of twink complaint threads on the World of Warcraft forums. Whatever one might feel about twinks, it's an ongoing phenomenon that shows no signs of letting up. I'm not a big fan of twinkage myself, but it's such a distinct subset of the PvP crowd that I feel compelled to write about it. Twice. Oh, and for the record, I am quite aware that 'twink' is a homosexual slang term. I prefer to think of the Hostess snack, though.

So here we go, the second part of our look at twink PvP. Last week we discussed an overview of the potential items that twinks can obtain... I didn't make a comprehensive list since that's a considerable task. I did, however, give some pointers in the right direction. Considering that Resilience does not exist in lower level PvP, the key stat is Stamina, so get gear with loads of it. There are also ways to improve on gear, particularly using permanent item enchants. The most notorious of these is probably the Nethercleft Leg Armor, which requires Level 60 to apply, but has no item restriction. It might cost a bit of gold because it requires Primal Nether to craft, but the +40 Stamina is well worth it for twinks. Patch 2.4 also promises removing binding on nethers, which may or may not lower prices. For casters, the tailoring equivalents of Golden and Runic Spellthreads are also good investments, despite the 20 stamina hit.

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Filed under: Druid, Hunter, Mage, Paladin, Priest, Rogue, Shaman, Warlock, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, The Art of War(craft) (PvP)

The Art of War(craft): Twinkage Part I

In the wild and wooly world of WoW PvP, there's one interesting subcategory that deserves mention -- the twinks. Defined as characters who are disproportionately powerful for their level, twinks are either loved or hated. On one hand, if you have a Level 70 character (or a few max-level friends), it's rather easy to 'twink up' another toon. On the other hand, many players who are leveling for the first time may find their Battlegrounds experience diminish when they encounter (and consequently have their faces smashed in by) ridiculously-geared and enchanted opponents on the field. In fact, twinks are a subculture of their own, with more than a few guilds set up exclusively for twink PvP.

Love them or hate them, twinks are here to stay. In fact, in response to a question at last year's Blizzcon, Blizzard responded that they were actually considering Arenas for characters Levels 19 and 29 (the common twink level limits). The problem, they said, was designing rewards for them and if there was sufficient player demand. Designing rewards for twinks seems to be a hyperbolic response considering that it's likely that the only characters that will excel in those low levels are already well-geared. That said, there is a small subculture of players who enjoy PvP at low levels to the point of wanting an experience toggle to keep their toons at a comfortably low level.

The reasons why people twink up toons varies, although most of these players have one or more Level 70 toons and want to have a little fun being overpowered in the Battlegrounds. Personally, I enjoy PvP at max level because it affords me the greatest challenge and gives me the most skills to work with. At lower levels, all classes have a limited number of skills and -- here's the important part -- not all classes will be good to PvP with because not all classes have access to key PvP skills yet. However, I'm sure a lot of people find twink PvP a lot of fun, even if they eventually plan to level past the twink stage. For purposes of this article, we'll take a look at Level 29 twinkage... it's not too low to have extremely limited skills, yet not too high so as to have too much of a skill discrepancy between classes.

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Filed under: Druid, Hunter, Mage, Paladin, Priest, Rogue, Shaman, Warlock, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, The Art of War(craft) (PvP), Battlegrounds

What is the definition of cheating in WoW?

Michael Zenke, the blogger behind MMOG Nation and regular contributor to our sister site Massively, has posted an article covering the latest dust up over gold selling.

The interesting part about this latest debate is that it has become a larger discussion about what is considered cheating. Most people would probably say that cheating is breaking the rules. Paying someone else to level your character or to give you gold for RL money is currently viewed as "unfair."

But if receiving money you didn't earn is in-game is cheating, does that extend to farming for gold with your main to give to your alt? What about having your higher level friends run you through a loweer level dungeon quicker? Isn't that powerleveling? What about twinking? Did your alt "earn" those items?

For many, I think the distinction is whether RL money is involved. It's acceptable to send gold to your alt because you main earned it, but it's not fair to buy gold because you are using your RL cash to get ahead in a game.

So if using RL resources to get ahead is cheating, what about people who are rich with time? After all, the principal mechanic for MMO progression is time spent playing the game. Aren't people with enormous amounts of free time using their RL resources to gain an unfair advantage of those who have limited play time?

Where is the line between cheating and working within the game rules to get the most out of your game time? And how much RL can developers expect to keep out of their games in the interest of "fairness"?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Cheats, Leveling, Alts

The twink experience (and toggling XP)

If you listened to the latest episode of Titan over on WoW Radio (and did you hear that we're teaming up with them to do a new show, starting Saturday? You did? Good), you heard Totalbiscuit and Eriyanna talk all about twinks-- alts who are created just to rule a certain battleground bracket. Most players aren't real big on twinks, and Jonaleth straight out wonders why people do it. Is it just for fun, or do the people who stay at that level just want to deal with simpler strategies and less abilities (since lower level characters don't have as many tools to play around with as higher level characters)?

The bad answer is, of course, that people just like spending gold and time to rule the battlegrounds with an enchanted, blue-geared fist. But the "good" answer is probably that yes, there's a lot of strategy in squeezing as much power you can out of a lower level character. Totalbiscuit, in the podcast, actually says that what twinks do at 19 and 29 is really what all players do at 70-- work hard on gear and enchants to get every little drop out of a character with a limited level, and that's very true.

So here's an interested idea from Brook on Garithos: how about an XP toggle, where players can actually switch off XP gain if they so choose. That would bring twinking to a whole new level, and allow players who twink to go into instances and run groups over and over again just to get the gear they want.

Predictably, players aren't thrilled with that idea-- most people have enough trouble with twinks in the BGs already for Blizzard to more or less officially sanction the practice with an official feature like that. Sure, it would definitely bring a whole new aspect to twinking. But most players, it seems, think twinking has too many aspects in the game already.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Tricks, Virtual selves, PvP, Buffs

The Dirtybishop hotfix

Well, that's not what Blizzard is calling this hotfix, but it's what everyone who's heard the story of rogue twink Dirtybishop would call it. While I have to admire the dedication of a level 19 who acquired Brooch of the Immortal King and Skyguard Silver Cross, I'd never want to run into such a player in the battlegrounds. And neither, apparently, does Blizzard. A hotfix applied today has made several Outland items require level 70 to equip:
Well, I'm sure it was fun while it lasted! And equally important to some, players should find their frame rates around the Blade's Edge Forge Camps to be greatly increased.

[Via MMO Champion]

Filed under: Patches, Blizzard, PvP

Beware of supertwink

We've had people try to get exalted with every faction. We've had people try to get every pet in the game. We've even had people who want to five-box every class to 70. But today, I think we may have met the person who has put the most time and effort into non-endgame WOW -- Dirtybishop.

Dirtybishop is a level 19 human twink on the Blackrock realm. At first glance, his profile looks pretty normal. Engineering goggles, WSG rep rewards, Meadow Rings of Eluding, ridiculously high-end leg armor and enchants. It's well-known that low-level rogues can get amazingly high dodge chance by stacking agility, so he's got a lot of agi enchants. But ... wait, what's that in the trinket slot? Brooch of the Immortal King? Skyguard Silver Cross?

Yes, this 19 twink is exalted with Sha'tari Skyguard. I don't know how he did it, although the prevailing guess is that he was summoned to Skettis and stood out of range of the experience and in range of the reputation gains. One of his guildmates said it took their mains four and a half weeks to farm Bishop the trinkte. I have no comprehension of the amount of effort this person has put in just to do WSG over and over and over again -- nevertheless, you sort of have to admire that single-mindedness. Plus, if he ever decides to level, he'll have a nice flying mount waiting for him.

Filed under: PvP, Factions

Level one twink is "an existential WoW exercise"

Ratherbrute sent this to us (he saw it in a signature on the forums), and I love his description of it. It's a profile of a level one twink, and Ratherbrute calls it "an existential WoW exercise." Basically someone out there, either in this profile or in the game (this character doesn't show up on the Armory, but the only character with this name shows that characters under level 10 aren't profiled on Blizzard's database), has pimped out a level one character.

It's definitely a fascinating idea, though. What's here mostly consists of enchants-- health and stamina chants on the armor give this level one paladin 453 health. For comparison, I went and rolled a level 1 myself-- an unplayed level one blood elf paladin starts with about 38 health. There's also a bit of extra damage on the weapon (untouched paladins hit for 7-10, and the twink hits for 13-17) and a little extra armor.

The Unadorned set used here is from a vendor in the Ghostlands-- it does seem to be the highest armor set available from a drop or a vendor. There is better level one armor out there (note that the armor is level 10, but level 10 is not required to wear it) from quests, but I'd imagine that actually completing any quest that pushes you past level one would defeat the purpose. Same deal with the weapon-- there are better swords around, but they're all quest swords, so it'd be tough to find something better while still remaining level one.

Of course, while Ratherbrute says this is all just existentialism, I'll still ask the central question here: just why would you want to twink a level 1? What is this pally planning on fighting, anyway?

Filed under: Paladin, Items, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Buffs, Enchants

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