Video :: Tank For Me Matteaus

I picked this one up over at WoW Insider today, so all credit goes to them for discovering it. Tank for Me Matteaus was originally supposed to be a simple celebration of Matteaus’ birthday and a thank you from his guild, Defenders of the Horde on Kilrogg [H] but it turned into something special. Something different. Something truly epic.

Watch, I think you’ll agree with me.


Video :: Blizzard Sucks

You’ve likely heard all of the complaining about the state of Cataclysm raiding and dungeons. You’ve also likely heard enough from either side of the debate that you’ve come to your own conclusions. Personally, I think that a number of people are asking a little too much of Blizzard when it comes to nerfing the game – and that when some of the more hardcore players are mad that the game is too easy and some of the most casual players are mad that the game is entirely too hard, then you’ve got the perfect balance for most players who don’t complain either way.

To that point, this video is another Cataclysm Heroics are Hard-style skewering of the mentality that Blizzard should ratchet the difficulty of the game down to the point where it’s pretty easy, especially for players who want to put in even less effort than those who willingly call themselves casual. Click play, and enjoy.

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What’s Your Favorite WoW Weapon?

Each week over at The Blog Azeroth Forums, the community comes together around a shared blog topic – interested WoW bloggers can pick up the topic and make posts on their own sites to respond to it, and all of the responses are collected and linked at TwistedNether.net. “What Is Your Favorite Weapon?” is this week’s topic!

This week’s shared topic over at Blog Azeroth was a particularly fun one to think about. Kallixta asked the group:

I was comparing a new upgrade to my older item when it struck me how much I liked my old item. Like is wonderfully subjective and I hope others will explain their measure.

Is your favorite weapon something with strong memories for you? Is it something that just works well for RP purposes? Or maybe the balance of abilities meshes better than normal to your spec and play style?

Admittedly, I don’t do much RP, and I’m not exactly an endgame high-end raider who doesn’t have time to think about the looks and story behind a weapon because he’s too busy min/maxing to care, so I think I’m right there in the middle with those players who have fallen in love enough with a couple of his items that they simply won’t ever leave the bank. Here are a couple of them.

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Azeroth Metblogs Call for Writers

Have you been sitting on the sidelines, reading and enjoying the Azeroth Metblogs but wishing you could make your own voice heard? Maybe you’re an avid World of Warcraft player and you’re looking to speak your mind about the game, your favorite class, your RP antics, or the WoW community in general, but you don’t really want to start your own blog?

Well, the Azeroth Metblogs could always use more dedicated writers who are willing to talk about any and all things WoW-related! Your personal experiences, your guild, your opinions, you name it!

To apply, either leave a comment here or drop me a line at phoenix [at] novawerks [dot] net and let me know what you think you can bring to the site, whether it’s a really cool column idea, or just some readers in the form of your WoW-playing buddies and friends. The only thing we ask is that you have some solid proficiency in English, play World of Warcraft enough that you can speak to it confidently, and be committed enough to at least 1-3 posts per week.

So, interested? Drop us a line!

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Discussion :: What Are Your Favorite Warcraft Webcomics?


(image above from Ding! by Scott Kurtz, of PVPOnline!)

So there’s no question that our love of World of Warcraft extends beyond the realm of the game…for a lot of us it’s a lifestyle, one that we enjoy even when we’re not in-game, or when we’re bored at the office. Thankfully, there’s a wealth of ways for us to stay on top of what’s going on in the WoW community, but there’s also lots of ways for us to entertain ourselves as well: webcomics!

There’s no shortage of World of Warcraft-themed webcomics on the Web, but we want to know what some of your favorites are. Let us know in the comments and we’ll post a roundup of them – including some of our favorites – next week!

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Video :: What Happens During Server Maintenance

WoWCrendor is back again with a fantastic video that – I really hope – will silence the people who just can’t stop whining about server maintenance and wondering what’s happening behind the scenes during maintenance periods.

I mean seriously – it happens every single week, people. Aside from that? Just watch.

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What to do when Good Guildies Go Bad

Each week over at The Blog Azeroth Forums, the community comes together around a shared blog topic – interested WoW bloggers can pick up the topic and make posts on their own sites to respond to it, and all of the responses are collected and linked at TwistedNether.net. “What to do when Good Guildies Go Bad” is this week’s topic!

This week’s shared topic at Blog Azeroth resonated with me specifically:

What do you do when a normally good guildmate performs poorly or behaves badly? Your rock solid tank comes to raid ungemmed, your master mage dips down into pre-cata dps numbers several nights in a row or your best healer can’t seem to keep from going oom 2 minutes into any fight. What do you do? The obvious answer is shoot the hostage but…

It’s been a while since I’ve been in the kind of position to really gripe about this, but I’m going to take a different approach – not just one around DPS or poor performance in raids and instances, but also when it comes to behavior in general. I definitely have experience with guildies who generally behave badly and can’t bring themselves to either just be considerate to their guildmates or who are just so obnoxious in general that they’re difficult to deal with.

First thing’s first – let’s talk about the kind of guild member I’m thinking of here. Sure, there are plenty who mean well but do poorly in raids and instances because of one thing or another – bad gear, improperly gemmed, using the wrong weapon, poorly spec’d. You know those folks. Some of them may be a bit defensive when called out on their errors (after all, no one wants to be told they’re wrong) but more often than not they’re willing to learn from their mistakes and improve their game if you bring it up to them in a police and reasonable way. These people aren’t the ones I’m talking about.

I’m talking about the kind that constantly link their items in guild chat just to show off what they’ve seen/picked up/looted lately, the kind that use guild chat as their personal trade chat or use it largely to talk to one other person, (the kind that use guild chat for the types of conversations that should happen in whispers, for example) the kind that can’t stop saying wonderful things about themselves and generally clog up guild chat or raid chat with their own self-aggrandizing banter.

They’re the type who are the most defensive when you call them out on their errors, because they simply can’t believe themselves capable of any wrong. They’re the type who will start whining about you when you bring up a way they can improve – no matter how nicely you do it – or build a massive conspiracy theory against them on behalf of you and your whole guild if they perform poorly in raids and find themselves benched.

Oh yes, I know this type of person very well. And admittedly, they’re not always the type who was “good” before they “went bad,” usually this type has always been bad, but they made friends somehow, right? So what do you do about them? Click the jump, let me offer some suggestions.

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Blizzard Unveils New Account Security Guide

Blizzard took the wraps off of a new account security guide yesterday, designed to give players both new and veteran a simple place to go to see all of Blizzard’s reccomendations on how to keep your account safe from the people who would – and they very much would – exploit it and snag your characters right out from under you.

The basics are clear: you know, use a strong password, make sure you don’t give out your account information, don’t use shady gold selling services, things like that. Then of course, the guide goes into exactly how badly you really do need an authenticator bound to your account, even if it’s the new free phone-in version. There’s absolutely no excuse not to have an authenticator at this point.

The guide goes the extra mile too, with a few handy tips on keeping your computer safe in general by making sure your operating system is up to date and all patched up, that you have some solid anti-malware utility installed and that it’s up to date.

Blizzard’s tips are good, and well worth reading even if you already know what you’re doing when it comes to account security. At the same time though, it takes more than reading them to make sure you’re safe – make sure you apply them. Use a solid password and get an authenticator for your account. Make sure you keep your computer safe from threats as well as your game, and make sure you never give out your account information, no matter who emails you asking for it.

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Blizzard Talks Next-Gen MMO with Ars Technica

Blizzard is keeping its lips sealed on the nature and content of the project it only publicly refers to as its “next generation MMO,” but CEO Mike Morhaime had a few choice words for an audience in Las Vegas last week, according to Ars Technica. He said:

“Without giving away any details, we have some of our most experienced MMO developers, people who spent years working on the World of WarCraft team, working on this project,” Morhaime said. “We’re really trying to leverage all the lessons we learned through the years. Some of which we were able to address in World of WarCraft and others that maybe because of the design decisions we’ve made, you just can’t address. So we’re kind of taking a step back with all that knowledge to make something that’s completely new and fresh. We’re not trying to make a WoW sequel.” In fact, he explained that the two titles will co-exist in the future.

He went on to talk a little bit about the social aspects of the game before clamming up entirely over it, but what he has confirmed is that some of the people who made World of Warcraft such a success are working on the project. He also pointed out that the game will be entirely new – meaning it won’t play off of one of the company’s existing properties. Sorry fans, no World of StarCraft or World of Diablo game for you.

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Raid Ready Wants Your Videos, Will Award Skittles to the Best

The fine folks at Raid Ready (who we spoke to a while back) have taken a break from making hilarious internet videos and ar eback to working on the Raid Ready service. In the interim though, they need some new videos, preferably from folks like you and I for whom sometimes World of Warcraft can be a little close to reality for some people’s comfort.

So, they’re looking for your videos! That’s right, YOU.

The video above outlines what they’re looking for and what’s at stake, namely a bag of delicious delicious skittles. And 6 months of pre-paid WoW game time, a 2009 Blizzcon Authenticator, and a Starcraft II poker set! But seriously, skittles!

Head over to the Raid Ready: Do It Yourself page for the full contest details and to find out how to enter!

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MMO Champion’s Raiding Tactics Flowchart Makes Knowing Your Role Easy

Click the image above to embiggen and get a nice large version of the flowchart that you can, you know, bookmark or print out and put up next to your monitor, whatever it takes to remember your role in a raid or an instance.

The chart, which comes to us by way the fine folks at MMO Champion and was originally created by Aear, from guild Fierce Creatures of Bloodhoof-EU, does a really great job of boiling down raid responsibilities and roles into something that’s easy to follow and understand, regardless of the class you play – it’s really about the role that you play, and there are more than a few specific tips for people who play specific classes along the way.

Admittedly, these aren’t specific raid strats for specific instances or events or bosses – they’re general tips that, if you follow them 99% of the time, you’ll make out just fine in just about every dungeon or raid you join.

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Video :: Paladin Caramelldansen

The beauty of all of the whole caramelldansen meme is that regardless of what you’re a fan of, there’s likely a video of it. This can’t possibly be the first one related to World of Warcraft – heck, it’s not even the first one I’ve seen, but it’s definitely one of the most adorable. Maybe it helps that I play a Paladin.

Regardless, enjoy!

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Blizzard’s Guild Advancement Guide Helps Guilds Master the Basics

I had meant to share this when it was a little newer, but Blizzard recently posted a Guild Advancement Guide to the new Community Site that explains the basics of guild leveling, achievements, reputation, and some general tips to help your guild do well in all of its endeavors, whether it involves raiding, instances, or just being social and trying to keep a motley crew of friends together and on speaking terms.

Of course the post really focuses on things like the Guild UI, perks and achievements, and the technical side of being in a guild or running a guild, but the tips are great for people who are confused about all of the changes to the guild system in Cataclysm and are looking for some more information about it.

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Video :: Alliance v. Horde – Sex Change

Okay, now I admit that I have just as many female characters as male characters, but the reason for that is because I just prefer some of their character models – not because I base my gender identity on the gender of the virtual character in a game I play. There’s nothing wrong with that, right? I mean really!

I’m not looking for loot, or looking for anyone to treat me differently because my character is female or anything….although I have noticed it a couple of times…but that’s not the point!

In this hilarious video, we have someone who just recently switched factions, and decided – what the hey, they may as well switch genders too while they’re at it. The results? Hilarious.

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Visualize Raid Strategy with BossBlueprint

If you have a difficult time explaining to your raid or your guild exactly how they should move and where they should stand in a given raid encounter, or if you have people in your raid or guild that are be far visual learners and just don’t seem to be getting the hang of what you’re saying, Boss Blueprint might be a handy tool to help you build those raid strategies and share them with your raid members before the encounter so there’s no confusion.

The site only has support at the moment for Blackwing Descent, Throne of the Four Winds, and Bastion of Twilight, and the boss encounters therein – it would be really useful if the tool added more encounters and raids, even older ones that some people still run as practice or for fun – but it makes sense that the most recent content would be of primary interest to the people using Boss Blueprint.

The app then lets you add raid icons, raid roles, and directional arrows and zones to the map to indicate where players with ranged DPS should stand, where the healers should be, and where the tanks should be in relation to the boss, and other mobs and elements of the encounter that players should be aware of are located. You can drop big red circles on the ground to indicate places where you shouldn’t stand, arrows to tell players where they should move, and more.

Once you’re all finished, you can save your blueprint and share it with your raid either by downloading the JPG and posting it somewhere yourself, or by embedding the blueprint in another Web site.

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