Skip to Content

WoW Insider has the latest on the Mists of Pandaria!

Posts with tag zulaman

WoW Archivist: Patch 2.3 -- Azeroth iterated

Patch 2.3: The Gods of Zul'Aman
WoW Archivist explores the secrets of World of Warcraft's past. What did the game look like years ago? Who is etched into WoW's history? What secrets does the game still hold?

Blizzard likes to talk about their "iterative" process, meaning they make many small improvements over time to produce the best possible result. In the case of the lackluster patch 2.2, players were disappointed that more was not done. With the game's subscriptions still skyrocketing, Blizzard felt pressure to deliver a major dose of new content and improvements.

In November 2007, Blizzard answered the bell and unleashed an iteration that reshaped the game from top to bottom. Players of every level experienced sweeping changes to their play experience -- many of which are so integral now that it's hard to believe we played without them for so long. If you ask players about patch 2.3, they'll call it the "ZA patch." Zul'Aman was a great raid, but 2.3 offered so much more than that.

Read more →

Filed under: WoW Archivist

Patch 5.2 PTR - The return of Zul'Gurub in transmog form

Patch 52 PTR  The return of Zul'Gurub in transmog form
If you're old enough a World of Warcraft hand to remember the original Zul'Gurub raid, then you probably remember the gear introduced in that raid as well. It served many a player who hadn't gotten lucky yet in MC, as well as filled gaps in itemization which were fairly common at the time (I tanked for a long time with the Bloodsoaked Legplates and Zandalar Vindicator's Breastplate) - but of course, as the years progressed it became harder to justify holding on to this set, and once Zul'Gurub was removed as a raid at the beginning of Cataclysm, so too was the ability to gather the unique gear from the raid. Similarly, when Zul'Aman was converted to a 5 man some of the unique skins from that dungeon were also made unavailable.

Now the folks at Wowhead have data-mined up these sets, 429 greens with skins matching the old ZG and ZA pieces. What does this mean? Well, for starters it means plate wearers can look like Spider-Man again. Some of the pieces still have class restrictions on them like this paladin breastplate - whether or not that will change before these pieces make it live (if they do) it's still very interesting. Now all we need is a green polearm with the Halberd of Smiting model.


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, Transmogrification, Mists of Pandaria

The balance between new and old content

The balance between new and old content
In some ways, the development team on World of Warcraft has to constantly pay for their own successes. Nostalgia is a potent force, and players often look back fondly on their favorite experiences and want to experience them again. The recent patch 5.1 changes allowing max level players to enter and solo older raid content is a testament to how much goodwill there is towards these older experiences. In both Cataclysm and Mists of Pandaria, older dungeons were revamped and raised to the then-level cap as heroics, and two older raids (Zul'Gurub and Zul'Aman) were brought into Cataclysm as five man dungeons to tie into a further storyline.

Today, while reading the forums I came across a post by Nethaera that really sums up the difficulty in this kind of balance between player nostalgia and new experiences. One of the things I think Cataclysm showed us was that there are limits to how much time players will accept spent on revamping old content and that Blizzard really has to focus on what's new in order to keep the game moving forward. As much as we all love a good soak in nostalgia, it's never as good to actually eat the leftovers as we convinced ourselves it was.

Read more →

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

Know Your Lore: The Troll Wars

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.

The past is prologue.
Melodramatic, perhaps, but it bears stating. The world of Azeroth, known to us for the three most recent wars, has in fact seen many -- the War of the Ancients, the War of the Shifting Sands, the war between the ancient troll empires and the aqir. One of these wars went far to set the stage for the First and Second Wars by creating, in effect, three of the major players in those conflicts. Without the Troll Wars, there would today be no Silvermoon, no human nations (and thus no Forsaken), and the troll nation of Zul'Aman would rule all of northern Lordaeron, perhaps all the way south to Khaz Modan.

The Troll Wars were named by their victors. To the trolls of Zul'Aman, they never really ended. Pushed back by the elves of Quel'Thalas and their human allies, the once-great northern troll empire receded but never actually died. Technically, even after repeated raids by outsiders, the Amani still hold onto their ancestral home. But all around it, the direct descendants (barely two elven generations) of their conquerors hold the Ghostlands, forests scarred by the Scourge during the Third War. War seems to never leave the gates of the troll kingdoms.

However, to be fair, it's not as if the trolls are shy about warring on others, either.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Lore, Know your Lore

The missed opportunity of 20-man raiding

With the release of the Raid Finder and the recent changes to valor points, the debate about 10- vs. 25-man raiding, which is harder to run, and which is harder to balance rages on. I have friends on both sides of the 10/25 debate. I understand both points of view, and I think both are utterly wrong. Completely, absolutely wrong. The issue to me is when we went from 40-man raids down to the current raid sizes, the decision to offer 25-man raids didn't really work. I think we should have gone to 10- and 20-man raiding at the dawn of The Burning Crusade, and I still think we should.

We had 20-man raids back in classic WoW -- two of them, in fact, Zul'Gurub and Ruins of Ahn'Qiraj. Neither exists as a 20-man raid any more, so this may seem odd to players who didn't raid then, but these were considered the small raids. People who had just spent hours raiding in Molten Core, Blackwing Lair or AQ40 would put together these runs on the fly to gear their alts or get a shot at off-spec loot, while other guilds that didn't have the numbers for 40-man raids would spend their time raiding these while trying to build up their numbers.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, The Burning Crusade, Wrath of the Lich King

Patch 4.3 PTR: Streamlining changes for Zul'Gurub and Zul'Aman

The latest patch 4.3 PTR notes have a significant change in them for those of us running heroics for valor points (that is to say, everyone running them). When patch 4.3 drops and the Zandalari heroics are dropped down into the common pool of heroics, it'll be easier to complete the dungeons. Why is that, you ask? Well, I'll tell you.

Patch 4.3.0 PTR Notes
Zul'Gurub
  • Players now only have to kill two of the four initial dungeon bosses (High Priest Venoxis, Broodlord Mandokir, High Priestess Kilnara, and Zanzil) to face Jin'do the Godbreaker.

Zul'Aman
  • Players now only have to kill two of the four Troll avatars before they may face Hex Lord Malacrass.

This means you'll only need to kill two of the bosses to get to the end in the case of ZG, and two plus Hex Lord to get to the end of ZA. The good news is, this will make these dungeons go a lot faster. The bad news is, good luck convincing a group to kill Dragonhawk or Kilnara. This is a fairly big sign that Blizz expects us to be saying goodbye to these instances as soon as we can get into the new Twilight 5-mans.

I'm all for it, myself. I hate running ZG now; it takes forever. But I can definitely see people objecting to the way this will force them to miss out on mount changes or loot from bosses no one wants to do.

Brace yourselves for what could be some of most exciting updates to the game recently with patch 4.3. Review the official patch notes, and then dig into what's ahead: new item storage options, cross-realm raiding, cosmetic armor skinning and your chance to battle the mighty Deathwing -- from astride his back!

Filed under: News items, Cataclysm

Two Bosses Enter: Jan'alai vs. Corborus

In Two Bosses Enter, WoW Insider's series of fantasy death matches, the bosses of World of Warcraft face off in the squared circle. Your vote determines who wins and claims the season title.

Temple Guardian Anhuur's sweet, dulcet tones could not stand up to the might of Daakara, Zul'Aman's new leader sitting atop the Amani throne, once reserved for the one-armed Zul'jin. I guess Anhuur just wasn't ready for the bear/eagle combination that just annoys PUGs as much as it does the might of the Two Bosses Enter arena competitors.

This week, Zul'Aman favorite Jan'alai, avatar of the dragonhawk, goes up against PUG-stomper Corborus, the colossal gyreworm. Who will come out on top this week?

Who wins?
Jan'alai1672 (50.1%)
Corborus1668 (49.9%)


Follow along for the details of this week's matchup, as well as discussion on last week's match.

Read more →

Filed under: Two Bosses Enter

Two Bosses Enter: Temple Guardian Anhuur vs. Daakara

zuldarak
In Two Bosses Enter, WoW Insider's series of fantasy death matches, the bosses of World of Warcraft face off in the squared circle. Your vote determines who wins and claims the season title.

Another Troll boss bit the dust last week when Hex Lord Malacrass fell to Vanessa VanCleef. This week, the Troll who inherited Zu'Aman in Cataclysm is up to bat: Daakara. Can Daakara pull out a win against Titan construct Anhuur?

Who wins?
Temple Guardian Anhuur1143 (32.6%)
Daakara2362 (67.4%)


Follow along for the details of this week's matchup, as well as discussion on last week's match.

Read more →

Filed under: Two Bosses Enter

Does the Rise of the Zandalari dungeon tier serve a purpose?

Perhaps what I should be asking is, "Does the Rise of the Zandalari dungeon tier still serve a purpose?" When patch 4.1 launched, the two Zandalari dungeons, Zul'Gurub and Zul'Aman, served as a "more advanced" level of heroic dungeon, with better gear (epic ilevel 353 gear almost as good as what drops in tier 11 raiding's normal modes) and more reward. Running just heroic dungeons before patch 4.1, it was possible to accumulate 70 valor points per day per heroic, for a grand total of 490 points in a week if you weren't raiding.

Patch 4.1 shook things up, and although patch 4.2 introduced a new raid, the same basic system that debuted in 4.1 is still with us. The Zandalari heroics not only dropped epic gear, they allowed non-raiders to collect twice as many valor points, a grand total of 980 valor points. It also allowed players to run heroics in a less limited fashion; you had up to seven in a week and you could run them once a day, all seven at once, or at any other rate you liked until you'd run your seven in a week's time. This was, overall, a positive change and one that allowed non-raiders to collect the tier gear available on vendors faster. Patch 4.2's change to the valor cap (reducing it to 980 in a week) meant that the Zandalari heroics could supply non-raiders with as many VPs as raiders got from raiding.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding

The OverAchiever: New achievements in patch 4.2

Every Thursday, The OverAchiever shows you how to work toward those sweet achievement points. This week, pet biscuits make us happy ... for a little while, at least.

We're going to take another break from our Mountain O' Mounts series to examine upcoming achievements in patch 4.2. We got an avalanche of news on these last Friday via MMO-Champion's datamining efforts on PTR build 14117, and they all look pretty nifty.

There are 16 achievements associated with the new Firelands/Mount Hyjal daily quest area, on which I have very little information right now, so we're going to examine those later. However, that still leaves us with new pet, legendary, dungeon, and anniversary achievements.

Read more →

Filed under: Achievements, The Overachiever

Know Your Lore: Vol'jin vs. the Zandalar

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.

I was going to do the Dark Trolls this week (seriously, whatever happened to these guys?), but then those darn Zandalari went and recruited the Gurubashi and Amani for a world-spanning plan to restore troll hegemony and bring back the empires of the past. Amazingly, the primary opponent of King Rastakhan's plan to unite all the troll tribes on Azeroth is, in fact, a troll himself.

Vol'jin, leader of the Darkspear tribe and long-standing ally to Thrall, is no stranger to confronting the mighty. He flat out threatened to kill Garrosh Hellscream, the new warchief, right to his face. He took part in the military operations against Daelin Proudmoore, spearheaded the reclamation of the Echo Isles against his old friend Zalazane, and has worked tirelessly to unify and bolster the Darkspear ranks, going so far as to ultimately defeat and destroy the Sea Witch that killed his father Sen'jin.

Since his people have joined the Horde, Vol'jin has balanced on the knife's edge between ancient troll customs and the demands of the Horde. Despite those who mistook his caution for weakness, Vol'jin has in recent days proven that he simply acts exactly when he believes the time is right, with precisely calculated choices that give maximum effect for minimum cost. Vol'jin has mastered the economy of action. Why, therefore, would he refuse the Zandalari offer? Is it merely because of his loyalty to Thrall and the Horde he himself helped create? Or is there more?

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Lore, Know your Lore, Cataclysm

Ol' Grumpy's first week with Patch 4.1

Hi, kids. It's me, Ol' Grumpy. You may remember me from my guide to Cataclysm instance protocols or perhaps from when I explained that you'd have to relearn some old bad habits from the previous expansion.

This time, I'm here to explain how to adjust to the new realities of patch 4.1, our two new heroic instances Zul'Gurub and Zul'Aman, and our Call to Arms feature in the dungeon finder. I've noticed some weeping, some wailing, and some gnashing of teeth over these new introductions with the passing of our first week with patch 4.1, and I'm here to help.

First off, calm down already. The Call to Arms feature didn't trap you in a deserted old house outside of town and murder everyone from the camp but you and that cute guy you've always liked from the other camp. It didn't steal your dog, kick your car, or write nasty things about your ma and pa on the back of the barn, either. And while both ZA and ZG provide more challenge than the previous tier of heroics, they didn't steal your cattle or set your grave on fire, either. In short, the level of consternation and yes, even whining about this has been entirely over the top. These instances are puggable with a little luck and some work, and CTA has shortened queue times, which was its only real goal.

So what should you do? Well, being an irascible old curmudgeon, I will happily tell you what to do. Especially if it keeps you off of my lawn. My wife just planted roses! Stay off!

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Cataclysm

WRUP: Those damnable hats

Every week, just at the start of the weekend, we catch up with the WoW Insider staff and ask them, "What are you playing this week?" -- otherwise known as: WRUP. Join us to see what we're up to in and out of game, and catch us in the comments to let us know what you're playing, too!

Hats! Fun, frilly hats! What a great week for colorful, whimsical, frilly hats! Not since the show Blossom went off the air have I seen so many hats in so many various shapes and sizes!

If you've been following the news this week, well then ... you know all about fun, frilly hats. You know who was wearing them and when. You have well-formed opinions on whose hat was the frilliest. And, of course, you're all too aware of what a terrible show of disrespect it is to not wear a fun, frilly hat. Hats!

What's that you say? Hats are boring and uninteresting? Well, I guess there was other news this week. Like Patch 4.1, some major content release for that World of Warcraft game. Something about trolls and a re-release of Zul'Aman and a Zul'Gurub as 5-man heroics.

In honor of the occasion, I thought it appropriate to tack on a bonus question to this week's WRUP: "What are your thoughts on the new five-mans, Zul'Gurub and Zul'Aman?"

Read more →

Filed under: WoW Insider Business

Lichborne: A quick patch 4.1 primer for death knights

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done.

By the time you read this, there is a very good chance that patch 4.1 will be live, or the servers will be down while patch 4.1 is being implemented. If it's not this week, chances are that we'll see it next week. With that in mind, today seems like the perfect chance to get in one more quick rundown of patch 4.1's features for death knights. We'll discuss all the latest class changes, as well as look at a couple of other general changes that will affect death knights.

Read more →

Filed under: Death Knight, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Patch 4.1: Guide to the new Zul'Aman

Of the two "new" troll dungeons introduced in patch 4.1, Zul'Aman was the more difficult on the PTR, to the point that it actually felt a little overtuned for folks trying to do it solely in heroic blues. I'd compare it to heroic Magisters' Terrace of The Burning Crusade or heroic Halls of Reflection in Wrath of the Lich King, at least in the sense that it can be a pretty unforgiving place if you're not sitting on any raid-quality gear. I only ever pugged ZA while on the PTR, so estimates of the content's difficulty are necessarily colored by that. If you're going to do this place with a competent set of guildies, you probably won't need to worry as much.

If you're familiar with ZA's pre-4.1 incarnation, you'll recognize a lot of the same mechanics, mobs, and bosses at 85. I used to organize "bear runs" for my guild back in BC and would go so far as to say that, in marked contrast to Zul'Gurub, about 90% of the dungeon's raid mechanics have survived in one form or another.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raid Guides

WoW Insider Show 

Subscribe via  iTunes for our latest show.

Hot Topics


 

Upcoming Events

Event Date
WoW's 10th Anniversary 11/21 - 1/5
Pilgrim's Bounty 11/24 - 12/1
Darkmoon Faire 12/7 - 12/14
Feast of Winter Veil 12/16 - 1/2

Around Azeroth

Around Azeroth

Featured Galleries

It came from the Blog: Occupy Orgrimmar
Midsummer Flamefest 2013
Running of the Orphans 2013
World of Warcraft Tattoos
HearthStone Sample Cards
HearthStone Concept Art
Yaks
It came from the Blog: Lunar Lunacy 2013
Art of Blizzard Gallery Opening

 

Categories