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Posts with tag zarhym

Will spectral flying be added to Pandaria?

It's a contentious issue for some - at present, there are various places in Pandaria that, once you're flying, you can end up dead that you can't get back to as a ghost. This means having no choice but to accept the repair cost and ten minutes of downtime that resurrecting at the spirit healer costs you. But now Zarhym comes to tell us that this might not always be the case.

Zarhym - No ghost flying in pandaria?
You're right. I just spoke to Ghostcrawler about it a bit and am going to clarify my original post. I explained why we didn't initially include flight while in ghost form on Pandaria, but it's important to note that the developers are discussing the issue and might well add ghost flying to the new continent. We do recognize that it's possible to die in some very inconvenient places, and much more frequently than in vanilla WoW due to flying mounts.



So if somehow you managed to die on top of a really inconvenient mountain peak in Kun-Lai just before raid (not that I know anyone like that) perhaps you won't have to eat ten minutes of "I can't tank yet" in the future. Not that I would know. Cause I don't.


Mists of Pandaria is here! The level cap has been raised to 90, many players have returned to Azeroth, and pet battles are taking the world by storm. Keep an eye out for all of the latest news, and check out our comprehensive guide to Mists of Pandaria for everything you'll ever need to know.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Mists of Pandaria

Are pet battles too inaccessible for new WoW players?

Are pet battles too inaccessible for new WoW players
Recently there were some complaints on the official forums (shocking, right?) about how expensive pet battles are. The argument by many is that new players should have easier access to this feature.

In the Pet Battle Q&A from about a week ago, Cory Stockton explained:

Cory Stockton
[ ... ] the 100g training cost is going to make it difficult for a new player to get caught up in Pet Battles super-early, and that's by design, because everyone should learn how to play World of Warcraft first. Having said that, a new alt that can get 100g from another character can start the Pet Battle system at level 5.


In answer to the more recent forum post, Zarhym reiterated:

Zarhym
The cost is there, in part, because pet battles are intended to be a fun mini-game, particularly for players who've been around a while and want some new ways to spend their time while logged in -- it's not a profession. The system isn't really targeted toward new players while they're focused on leveling and character progression.

This is why there is a low level cap, but a buy-in barrier. It allows players with high-level characters and/or lots of alts easy access to the system, while reducing the risk of it being distracting or confusing for people just learning the core gameplay systems/mechanics.


More from Zarhym after the break.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

Pet and Mount pane searchable in patch 5.1

Pet and Mount pane searchable in 51
The new mount panel is fantastic, and avoids many a noob moment like I had back when my paladin was brand new and had just learned to summon the class mount -- I couldn't find it, not realising that there was a "Mounts" tab in my spellbook. However, it has its downsides.

I don't suffer from this that much, as I'm not a huge collector of mounts, pets, or anything for that matter. I only have about 70 mounts, and that's a very ambitious estimate indeed! For those of us who are serious collectors, pet and mount panes new and old suffered from a serious problem: a lack of searchability!

Last night, in a Twitter conversation with Community Manager Zarhym, Lead Encounter Designer Cory "Mumper" Stockton said that a search function for mounts is "en-route for 5.1". Even with my measly 70 mounts and even fewer pets, I'm rejoicing. And, of course, glaring at the Abyssal Seahorse that mocks me from the top of my mount list.

What else could Blizzard do to improve the basic UI? I'd love to see a similar search added to the spellbook. My shaman was very confused indeed at the loss of Earth Shield, and eventually discovered that it had been taken away from her until level 26. A search could have made it far easier to find that! And I'd love to see a favorites section in the mount and pet journals. Mostly to get rid of that pesky seahorse.

[Edit: Thanks to all readers who pointed out that the pet pane is searchable already! I must write pieces immediately after titles so I don't forget key details!]

Filed under: Mists of Pandaria

Zarhym shares Mists of Pandaria midnight activation details

If you preordered a digital Mists of Pandaria and were wondering how it will switch over from Cataclysm to the new expansion, Zarhym has the details you thirst for, my friends. I myself got the digital deluxe this year (I love not having to go out and pick up a copy, I'm fearful of this thing you call outside) and so, I was curious. Zarhym, what do I need to know?

Zarhym - Mists of Pandaria Midnight Activation Details
The time is nearly upon us as the mists begin to part and a new age of discovery amidst turmoil begins! For those of you prepared to begin your adventures the moment Mists of Pandaria is launched in your region, we've put together some important details that should get your expedition underway.

As soon as we activate the new expansion content on launch, players who already have a Mists of Pandaria license with the data installed will gain instant access. If you're in the game when the clock strikes midnight, you don't even have to logout!

So, what happens at midnight for those of us with Mists ready to go?
  • A yellow System Message will appear in your Chat Log telling you to visit Orgrimmar or Stormwind to start your travels.
  • Level-85 characters will receive a new quest, no matter where they are in the world, which will guide them to Varian or Garrosh for further orders. If you're online at midnight you will receive the quest even if your Quest Log is full -- or you can visit Varian or Garrosh to get started on your journey to Pandaria.
  • Level-85 players will notice their experience bars automatically change so that experience can once again be earned.
  • Players who are at the Character Creation screen at midnight will notice the button to create a pandaren character will be enabled. (Reminder: This also applies to players who don't have a Mists of Pandaria license, as all races are now included with a base copy of World of Warcraft.)
  • Players who are at the Character Creation screen at midnight will notice the button to create a monk character will be enabled.
We've been very hard at work on this new technology with the goal of ensuring that players can enjoy a more stable and seamless transition into the next expansion than ever before. Our staff will be monitoring realm stability and gameplay issues around the clock, as we want to provide you with the best experience possible.

We'll see you on Pandaria!



Sounds like a fairly painless process all around. I suspect I'll find out first hand, as I'll doubtlessly be sitting there logged on waiting for it to happen.


It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: News items, Mists of Pandaria

Blizzard Video: Everything that awaits you in Mists of Pandaria

Zarhym posted this video up on Twitter last night, and it's worth sharing across the interwebs -- a great look at (nearly; well, sorta) everything coming in Mists of Pandaria. All the big zones, the dungeons, scenarios, raids, etc... Even some farming is in the video.

Zarhym notes in his tweet below that it was made for internal purposes, and we're glad they're sharing. Of course it's not as polished as something we'd see at BlizzCon or as a trailer, but it's still pretty good.

Have a look! And this just reinforces my happiness over the revamp of Scarlet Monastery.



It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: Mists of Pandaria

No nerfs, no lockouts, no consumable restrictions for Challenge Mode dungeons

No nerfs for Challenge Mode dungeons

Blizzard's Lead Encounter Designer Ion Hazzikostas, a.k.a. Watcher, has taken to the forums a few times lately, along with Community Manager Zarhym, to provide clarification on Challenge Modes.

With all the bad air swirling around Blizzard from certain minority groups within the WoW community about catering to casuals, challenge modes are something they seem very keen to stand firm on. When asked if challenge modes would ever be nerfed, Ion replied as follows:


Watcher
If at all feasible, we're not going to be adjusting the content itself. Persistent leaderboards are the backbone of the system, and if we make the dungeon easier, then your 14:13 time last week might actually be more impressive than my 14:05 clear today, but there would be no way of knowing that. It's conceivable that we might adjust the actual Gold/Silver/Bronze cutoff times slightly if it turns out we were badly off the mark with the tuning, but we're pretty confident in our numbers.


Zarhym also weighed in with his own input on the nerf question.

Read more →

Best Buy hosting Mists of Pandaria Developer chat on Tuesday, Sep. 18

Best Buy hosting Mists of Pandaria Developer chat on Tuesday, Sep 18
Best Buy Unboxed, the forum community for Best Buy stores, will be holding a Mists of Pandaria developer chat on Tuesday, September 18 beginning at 6pm CST. Included on the developer panel are a few familiar faces from the recent Reddit AMA -- Lead Systems Designer Greg Street, Lead Content Designer Ion Hazzikostas, and Lead Quest Designer Dave Kosak. Also included on the panel is Lead Content Designer Cory Stockton and Community Managers Zarhym and Crithto.

To participate in the chat, all you need do is visit the official page on Best Buy's forums when the chat itself goes live. If your question wasn't addressed in the Reddit AMA, or if you simply missed the opportunity to ask, this is an excellent chance to get all your questions answered. It's nice to see the developer community so active, particularly on the eve of a new expansion's launch. Be sure to hit up Best Buy Unboxed on September 18 whether you've got a question to ask, or you just want to watch the show.


It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: Blizzard, News items, Mists of Pandaria

Reddit AMA transcript now available

Reddit AMA transcript now available
Yesterday, several members of the Warcraft development team had a massive AMA on Reddit. AMA stands for Ask Me Anything -- and players responded with a deluge of questions on everything from Cross-Realm zones to story and lore. For the sake of convenience, Blizzard put together a transcript of the entire post on their website earlier today.

The questions and answers are separated by the designer who answered them. Game Director Tom Chilton focused on PvP, gameplay systems, cross-realm zones, character models and development timelines. Lead Quest Designer Dave Kosak focused on lore, novels, characters, and quest and zone design. Lead Encounter Designer Ion Hazzikostas focused on dungeons and raids as well as loot and talent systems and endgame progression. And of course Lead Systems Designer Greg Street focused on classes, as well as gameplay systems, cross-realm zones, and dungeons and raids.

There is a ton of information contained in the AMA, including some clarification on the purpose and mechanics of Cross-Realm zones, something that a lot of people have been wondering about. Check out the full transcript for an information overload of Warcraft goodies.


It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: Blizzard, News items

Reddit AMA with WoW developers today

Mists of Pandaria
Community Manager Zarhym will be hosting an AMA (or Ask Me Anything) in /r/WoW on Reddit this evening at 5:30 p.m. PDT (8:30 p.m. EDT). Joining him will be Greg "Ghostcrawler" Street, Dave Kosak, Tom Chilton, and Ion Hazzikostas.

For those who don't know, an AMA is where you post questions for the people participating and they are supposed to answer them all -- or as many as possible in the time allotted. Because this will be a heavily attended session, they will be answering the questions that are upvoted the most.

WoW Insider will be monitoring the AMA, so we'll keep you posted on any important news items that arise.

Zarhym's post with all the details is after the break.

Read more →

Filed under: Blizzard, News items

Zarhym wins Community Manager of the Year at Dragon*Con 2012

Jonathan Brown, a.k.a. Zarhym, a.k.a. that lovable floating skull at Blizzard HQ, won Community Manager of the Year at the Dragon Slayer Awards at Dragon*Con 2012. This was the inaugural edition of the awards, presented by Guild Launch, and had over 250,000 votes cast.

Zarhym was unable to accept the award himself, since he was on the other side of the country at PAX, but Game Designer Jonathan LeCraft was able to accept on his behalf. You can read what Zarhym had to say about winning the award over at his Tumblr, and The Daily Blink weights in on the award as well.

We here at WoW Insider extend our congrats to Zarhym, and hope you'll join us in doing so. He's been a great part of the community for a long time, and is wonderful to work with. Cheers!

Filed under: Blizzard, News items

Visit Blizzard CMs at PAX Prime

No, Blizzard doesn't have a booth of its own at PAX Prime in Seattle, but that doesn't mean you can't catch up with some of our favorite CMs there. There will be four -- count them, four -- Blizzard CMs making an appearance at the con. Nethaera and Vaeflare will be at the NVIDIA booth, and Zarhym and Bashiok are hanging out at the Intel booth.

So if you're at the con, there is absolutely no reason you shouldn't head over and say hi. Just check out the testimonials. You don't get that kind of floating skull satisfaction without doing something right, people. With there being no BlizzCon this year, how many chances are you going to have to meet cool folks who work on the game?

It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: Blizzard, News items

World of Warcraft Facebook takes 12-day journey into Mists of Pandaria

World of Warcraft Facebook takes TwelveDay Journey into Mists of Pandaria
If you're on Facebook, for 12 days starting Sept. 12, you can catch exclusive content for the upcoming Mists of Pandaria expansion. And if you're an artist, you could even see a piece of your art win one of 12 slots as an exclusive cover image. If you're interested, submit your art to promotions@blizzard.com by Sept. 7.

Zarhym has the scoop for those of us interested in getting our art included, and also what we'll be able to find on the World of Warcraft Facebook page for those 12 days.

Zarhym - Twelve-Day Journey into the Mists of Pandaria
It won't be long until the adventure through the exotic land of Pandaria begins. To count down the moments before you arrive at this new frontier, we'll be sharing exclusive content on our World of Warcraft Facebook page every day for 12 days until Mists of Pandaria launches. Beginning September 14, visit our Facebook timeline for exclusive music, videos, behind-the-scenes interviews, Warcraft hero bios, desktop wallpapers, and more.

To give our Facebook timeline a little extra flavor during the 12-day countdown, we'll be featuring exclusive cover images from the artists among you! Just follow the formatting instructions below and submit your artwork to promotions@blizzard.com by September 7 for a chance to be featured as one of the twelve World of Warcraft cover images of the day.

Cover Image Guidelines: Artists should submit pieces in the optimal cover image resolution (851 x 315 pixels), place the World of Warcraft logo in the top right corner, and preferably sign their name in the bottom right corner. Use our current cover image as a reference for logo placement. Our standard fan art terms apply to all submissions we receive. We look forward to seeing what you create!

Prepare yourselves... the journey begins soon.



It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: Blizzard, News items, Mists of Pandaria

Vote for the community in the Dragon Slayer awards at Dragon*Con

World of Warcraft has a large presence in the online gaming community, and that presence is you guys, the people playing the game, reading about it and discussing it. Now, our friend Zarhym the floating, burning skull reminds us all that we can vote for WoW in the Dragon Slayer awards. You can even vote for yourselves in the Most Passionate Fan Base category.

As someone who writes about this game and has spent years interacting with you, I think you guys definitely count as passionate. You should totally vote for yourselves. Also, vote for Zarhym for Community Manager of the Year, since he asked nicely and he reminds me of Morte from Planescape: Torment.

Community spirit isn't something WoW players lack, in my opinion. With the Dragon Slayer awards being aimed directly at community, here's a chance to show it off. The awards will be presented Sept. 2 at this year's Dragon*Con, which runs from Aug. 31 to Sept. 3.

It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Blizzard lists external resources for WoW players

If you're just getting back into WoW or are looking at the patch 5.0.4 tsunami heading our way next week and wondering what to do, our friend Zarhym has a list of popular resources, fansites and other websites for you to peruse. None of these are run by Blizzard, but they are all sites that focus on the World of Warcraft in one way or another, be they databases like Wowhead or helpful strategy guide sites like Learn to Raid.

If you're looking for a site, the complete list is below so you can see if it matches your needs. I especially like that WoW Insider site. They're so dreamy.

Zarhym - World of Warcraft Fansites & Other Resources
For those of you seeking to enhance your World of Warcraft experience, connect with your peers; quickly search vast quest, item, and achievement databases; and much more, we've put together a list below of popular external resources operated by your fellow members of the community. These are quality content-driven sites that we feel are very beneficial to you as a player.

Keep in mind that these websites are not owned or operated by Blizzard Entertainment, and we don't control or endorse all information found on them. This list is also not exhaustive. We'll be expanding on this list as necessary over time to provide you with the best, most up-to-date community resources.

/r/WoW - official reddit community
Arena Junkies - PvP gameplay & strategy
BlizzPlanet - news; editorial
Curse - news; UI addon database
GuildOx - guild ranks & stats
How to Priest - priest gameplay & strategy
Learn to Raid - news; strategy
MMO Champion - news; database
TankSpot - news; strategy
Ten Ton Hammer - news; editorial
WarCraft Pets - pets & companions database
Wow Achievements - achievements database & ranks
WoW insider - news; editorial
WoW Interface - UI addon database
Wowhead - news; database
Wowpedia - wiki database




It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, News items, Mists of Pandaria

No Spirit of Competition reward this year

Zarhym broke the news to us via his usual gentle tweeting: There's no Spirit of Competition for this year's Olympics. It's understandable that pretty much all companion pet development time has gone into things like Mists of Pandaria's pet battles, a whole host of new tameable pets for said system, and so on. It's understandable that people would be bummed, as the Gold Medallion is no longer available within the game -- and thus, if you don't have the Spirit of Competition, you won't be getting one.

Perhaps the Spirit of Competition can be brought back as a prize for being the very best, which up to this point no one ever was.

It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Events, News items, Cataclysm, Mists of Pandaria

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