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Posts with tag zul-gurub

The OverAchiever: Do them now!


Every Thursday, The Overachiever shows you how to work toward those sweet achievement points. This week, it's time to get a move on.

We've had some recent news concerning achievements in categories we've already covered, and my original intent this week was to play catch-up with that in addition to finishing off the new reputation, world event, and feat of strength achievements in Cataclysm. However, given equally recent news concerning achievements that are set to become feats (and may do so as early as patch 4.0.1), I thought it would be more sensible to cover the stuff that you'd want to do as soon as possible before it disappears.

I've cross-checked the list of known Cataclysm feats of strength against the feats already present in game, and as far as I know, this should be a comprehensive set of current Wrath of the Lich King achievements that will become inaccessible as of patch 4.0.1, patch 4.0.3, or Cataclysm's release (or at least, a comprehensive list as of the current beta and PTR builds).

I've written this list assuming the following:
  • Although it hasn't been officially confirmed that all of these will disappear in patch 4.0.1 or 4.0.3 rather than the expansion itself, for the time being, I'm guessing it's one of the two patches you need to worry about.
  • With the recent announcement of arena Season 8 ending on Oct. 12, 4.0.1 may hit in less than two weeks. Zarhym's post just made it clear that the season could end as early as the 12th, not that it definitely would, and there's still a lot of stuff to fix on the PTR and beta -- but every Tuesday from hereon is a potential patch day.
  • Accepting Oct. 5 or 12 as possible patch dates, I've included an opinion on the feasibility of getting the following achievements done as quickly as possible.

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Filed under: Achievements, The Overachiever

Know Your Lore: The Eternals part two -- the Loa gods of the trolls


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.

Last week we took a brief look at the Eternals known as Ancients -- immortal beings that were worshiped largely by the night elves, though other races also paid their respects to these ancient beings. This week we'll be moving from the demigods of the night elves to the gods, demigods and Loa of the trolls. The pantheon of Loa is vast and largely undefined, though we've seen glimpses of gods here and there, and will see at least one more of them during the Echo Isles event that will be coming sometime before Cataclysm's release. Some of the Loa gods referenced in today's article originate from the Warcraft role-playing games, and should not be taken as full-on canon as a result, however there are several other Loa that are featured in game.

To begin, the Loa are essentially primal gods, with each god representing a different animal or domain. Where the Ancients covered various types of creatures, the Loa cover various aspects of creatures -- there's a very subtle different between the two. The Loa tend to be a little darker, and some could be called "evil." In order to make this a bit more organized, I'll be sorting the Loa according to tribe.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

15 Minutes of Fame: Classic raiders keep a different pace

15 Minutes of Fame is WoW.com's look at World of Warcraft personalities of all shapes and sizes -- from the renowned to the relatively anonymous, from the remarkable to the player next door. Tip us off to players you'd like to hear more about.

The old days are long gone, Gramps; take off the rose-colored glasses and play Wrath, where raiding is better than ever.

So goes conventional wisdom in the comments whenever anyone espouses a little nostalgia for the old days of vanilla WoW. Raiding was a far different animal back then. Players who raided were still considered hardcore -- "casual raiding" wasn't on the radar yet -- and devoted week after week of angling for a 40-man raid slot in hopes of earning the chance at a purple drop. Even though strategy sites for WoW raids blossomed sooner rather than later, videos and the trustworthy guides remained relatively sparse, and many early guilds developed their own tactics and jealously guarded alternative strategies. Standing at the mailbox in Ironforge with a massive, raid-sized weapon on your back meant wielding a badge of achievement that attracted a small crowd; bearers would be flooded with awed whispers asking where it was from.

A thoughtful look back at WoW's 40-man past yields both positives and negatives. It wasn't simply the size of the raids that made them feel so different than today's raids ; it was the interplay of raid size, the inexperience of the raiding player base, the scarcity and difficulty of rewards, the lack of universally accepted tactics and strategies ... A whole host of influences that simply can't be replicated today.

But while the era may long cold and dead, the content is still very much alive. Beyond the bored, pre-expansion players who are fending off burnout by sightseeing in vanilla WoW and The Burning Crusade instances lies another layer of players who are attacking old content with level-appropriate characters. These classic raiders aren't fruitlessly attempting to recreate the past; rather, they're enjoying an entirely different pacing for the game.

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Filed under: Interviews, 15 Minutes of Fame

The OverAchiever: 5 lucrative achievements

Last week we discussed a set of achievements likely to drive the average player to the poorhouse. This week, in the spirit of consoling people who may not necessarily have a Traveler's Tundra Mammoth in their immediate future, I'd like to present a series of 5 achievements where at least one of the following is true:
  • They're an unusual means of making gold in a way people wouldn't necessarily expect, or:
  • It would be almost impossible not to make a pile of gold while doing them.
Now, a disclaimer; the most obvious picks here would be achievements like Got My Mind On My Money or The Bread Winner, but they're more a record of your previous looting and questing rather than being something you really have to go for consciously. I'm on the lookout for slightly more interesting ways to grow rich from achievements that are not so directly concerned with moneymaking:

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Filed under: Achievements, The Overachiever

Phat Loot Phriday: Ancient Hakkari Manslayer


We've had some requests for husky loot lately, and so here's an item that isn't quite phat these days (just a little husky), but used to be quite interesting.

Name: Ancient Hakkari Manslayer (Wowhead, Thottbot, WoWDB)
Type: Epic One-hand Axe
Damage/Speed: 69 - 130 / 2.00 (49.8 DPS)
Attributes:
  • This is how you can tell this weapon is old-school: it has just one bit of green text, and that text is "Steals 48-54 life from target enemy."
  • Which doesn't, on its face, sound quite that nice. But at the time this weapon was current (ye olde patch 1.7), that was a hot proc. Because the proc actually scaled along with spell damage -- if you had 150 spell damage, and this proc hit, you wounded the enemy for 150 shadow damage, while healing yourself with same.

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Filed under: Shaman, Items, How-tos, Odds and ends, Instances, Raiding, Phat Loot Phriday, Bosses, NPCs

Insider Trader: Not like it used to be


Insider Trader is your inside line on making, selling, buying and using player-made products.

Lately, there has been a lot of talk about vanilla WoW and the way things used to be. Now that experience gains can be shut off, players can actually move through some of this content the way it was meant to be experienced. Well, it won't be exactly the way it was, but it's as close as we're getting.

Blizzard has also been implementing more elements from the old world. Naxxramas was a vanilla dungeon, and was redone to become the first raid instance of the second expansion, Wrath of the Lich King, set back on Azeroth no less.

In fact, soon we'll all be battling Onyxia once again, deep breaths and all!

Professions used to be different too. Of course, most of the changes to the system have been for the better, but there were some elements that could be recycled for the future.

Last week, Insider Trader discussed a new, more progressive direction for professions, including some of the ways that this could be implemented. This week I'll be shedding new light on one particular vanilla element that has been phased out, exploring ways in which it could be reborn.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Features, Raiding, Insider Trader (Professions)

Breakfast Topic: Soloing your way to a new ride

As Elizabeth observed a few days ago, there are certain pleasures to being 80. Even if you haven't gotten a shiny drop from a raid or a heroic yet, or finished grinding your way to exalted with a Wrath faction, you have one thing that absolutely no one can take away from you: an ever-increasing chance to leave classic and Burning Crusade-level mobs swinging fruitlessly at the air, completely unable to hit you.

Just writing that gives me a disturbingly evil smile, because one of the things I've enjoyed most since hitting 80 is soloing heroic Sethekk in pursuit of the Raven Lord mount. Hi there, Syth. Remember the days when you used to mop the floor with my furry ass? I do, and this dish of revenge is being served to you at the proper temperature, courtesy of the frigid Northrend climate. How does it feel to be killed just because you're on the way to something bigger?

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Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Instances, Expansions, Features, Humor, The Burning Crusade, Wrath of the Lich King

Level 80 Death Knight solos Zul'Gurub


Paladins have been the solo instance kings for a while now, from BRD to Onyxia to Blood Furnace, but there may be a new contender in town. Felblood let us know that his level 80 Death Knight (I believe this is his Armory page) has soloed one of my favorite instances, Zul'Gurub, going from the snake boss all the way to Hakkar with just his character.

The snake boss, he says, was easy, just a nuke. The bat boss Jeklik silences, and a few of his resists failed on her, so she got some healing off, but she still dropped. Panther and spider went down all right, though the spider's webbing apparently kept him from healing as well -- being silenced, he couldn't cast disease, so Death Strike didn't heal. Bloodlord Mandokir was super tough, apparently -- I can imagine that watching would be pretty nuts during that. On Thekal, the tiger boss, his problem was that he was killing too fast: the boss would get ressed when one of the adds died early. Eventually he just brought them down to 50% and then just nuked all out, and the second phase was easy.

And Hakkar was anticlimactic -- he just basically tanked and spanked. He tried to anti-magic the Blood Syphons, but they didn't heal for much, so he just wailed on Hakkar until he was the last one standing. Quite a feat. Of course, at level 80, he was 20 levels above where this 20 man instance was meant to be, so we probably haven't seen the end of the level 60 content being soloed. But it seems that Death Knights are almost more equipped than Paladins to bring down some of the raid content on their own.

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

World of WarCrafts: Night Elf on her mount

night elf on mount
Today I want to show you one of the fan crafts that are being made by other WoW fans. While I love to craft this is something that I doubt I'll ever be able to create. Saturn over on the Craftster forums made this Night Elf lady on her mount. Made entirely of sculpy (craft clay) this lovely Night Elf seems to have gotten herself the Swift Zulian Tiger from Zul'Gurub since this tiger is a little more orange than the typical Frostsabers the Night Elves get.

I think she must be pretty uber leet too because she is hardly wearing anything and from what I have gathered the armor gets less and less....there as the game goes on. She must be a hunter too because it looks like a high end mail set to me. This just goes to show you just how creative you WoWers can get.

Filed under: Night Elves, Hunter, World of WarCrafts

Due for more Polymorph options

Here's a good idea from the forums: more sheep choices! Polymorph was one of the most beloved spells in the Warcraft RTS games, and so players were thrilled to see it come to World of Warcraft, and even more thrilled when two other variations on the spell were learned: instead of sheeping, players can either polymorph pig or turtle with two learned spells from quests or drops in the game.

But since the introduction of Zul'Gurub, we haven't seen any other options for mages in game. And there are plenty to choose from by now-- Polymorph: Ravager, Polymorph: Clefthoof, or Polymorph: Elekk would all work great. Polymorph: Willy would even be lots of fun. Oh, and yes, as players in the thread say, since we're headed to Northrend, Polymorph: Penguin would not be out of order in the next expansion.

Blizzard has done a pretty good job of taking mounts, both flying and ground-based, towards a little horizontal progress-- giving more options on one level instead of setting up a few options over multiple levels. But hopefully Polymorph will get a little love, too-- even though mages are the only ones who benefit directly, my guild has always had fun making sure our mages have all the Polymorph options possible.

Filed under: Mage, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Instances

Breakfast Topic: Best boss fight

Straight from the forums: What's the best boss fight in the game?

Personally, having been up through Gruul, I remain a big fan of Jeklik in Zul'Gurub-- it's got just the right mix of old fashioned tanking, AoE, and (eventually) all-out chaos that a great boss battle should have. People are saying that C'thun is a classic, but like most players, I've never had the chance to see him. In terms of five-man bosses, the quality on those really jumped up in Outland. I'd say Heroic Capacitus is fun, with the positive/negative mechanic borrowed from Thaddius. And Sepethrea's little Tron room in the Mechanar is a good time, too.

But I'm probably forgetting quite a few good ones. What is the best boss fight in the game?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Instances, Bosses

Breakfast Topic: Are you tired of Trolls?

Not the Internet kind, the Zul'Aman kind. I don't know about you, but visiting yet another troll based instance isn't ringing my bell. Maybe it has to do with my 15 level grind from hell in Stranglethorn Vale back in the day. Or some bad wipes in Zul'Gurub.

Either way, I want to experience something new. Not something old with better loot. Plus, as Phaelia at Resto4Life pointed out, the better loot may not be worth the public humiliation.

What do you think? Are you happy to revisit a classic World of Warcraft themed dungeon like Zul'Aman, which, despite its looks, has new mechanics and bosses or are you yearning for something new like Sunwell Plateau?

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Breakfast Topics

Breakfast topic: There is only Zul

Zul'Farrak vs. Zul'Gurub vs. Zul'Aman.

Bronko on the forums says "if the mobs were of equal level... go!" but I can't tell if he means which we like better or which would win in a throwdown (my hunch thinks "throwdown," since that would be so much more interesting to see). So let's answer both.

I haven't played Zul'Aman yet, so it may be amazing, but I think I might have to agree with Bornakk-- the stairs in Zul'Farrak are pretty epic, especially for their level. Then again, Zul'Aman will probably have at least one or two events like that, so I'd be partial to the troll city in the Ghostlands in that case. And ZG is definitely a great 10 man 20 man (boy it's been a while since I've been there), too-- Hakkar's whispers, all the different bosses, the funny little in-jokes ("Ding!" "Grats!" is a classic, as is Nat Pagle's fishing spot), and the different animal areas make it a great instance. Hopefully Zul'Aman will match up.

And in terms of a throwdown, as players note in the thread, the Blood Drinkers in Zul'Gurub make things harder for everyone else. Will the trolls from ZF and ZA know to down the other bosses before Hakkar? Or can anyone, for that matter, stand up to the might of Zul'jin himself? So who wins, ZA, ZF, or ZG?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics, Instances

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