Patch 6.0.2, the pre-expansion patch, is just weeks away and is already available for testing on the private test realm. This week we look at five new features that will drastically improve the game.
Read more of Reza Lackey's All Things Warcraft: 5 Improvements Coming in Patch 6.0.2.
It is no secret that any article about Blizzard's World of Warcraft will garner a lot of attention and, often, a long list of forum pages of debate. It is obvious then, that World of Warcraft has become a polarizing game over its decade of existence. Millions of players have streamed through its virtual doors during those ten years. Some have stayed for the duration. Others have left and returned with each expansion. Still others have waved goodbye to WoW and never returned. No matter what, however, anyone who has had the chance to play the game, arguably the MMO of this young century, are never the same and in a very real sense, will always be a WoW player.
Read more of Suzie Ford's World of Warcraft: Wow Players Never Die. They Resurrect.
A few years ago, rumors and some pixelated images of an amusement park based on Blizzard's World of Warcraft surfaced during its construction. Fast forward to 2014. Thanks in large part to a couple from England, we can now see that the WoW themed amusement park has indeed opened, illegally for the record (copyright infringement and all that), and can be viewed in a series of images the couple posted to Imgur.com.
World of Warcraft accounts that have not been accessed since 2008 and before will see the names reclaimed by Blizzard to free them up for other players to use. Those wishing to hold on to legacy account names will want to log into each character in order to preserve the name.
Our goal with this great name liberation is to make sure new and returning players have a large and varied pool of names available to choose from—so log in now if you wish to preserve your unused characters’ names for your journey intro Draenor.
Source: World of Warcraft Community Site
Blizzard has released the latest in a series of videos designed to introduce World of Warcraft players to the leaders of the Iron Horde who will arrive in game with the Warlords of Draenor expansion. In this episode, players are introduced to Durotan, leader of the Frost Wolf clan.
Warlords of Draenor will be released on November 13, 2014.
Check it out and let us know what you think.
Wowhead has a report and several screens that have been datamined from the World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor beta that shows the Robin Williams memorial. The information was datamined by beta players. After Williams' death last month, Blizzard confirmed that it would memorialize him in WoW and it has kept its word.
You can summon Robin by rubbing the Ever-Burning Lamp. When first summoned, he exclaims "INFINITE COSMIC POWER" and then shrinks and waves goodbye, saying "itty bitty living space."
Nearby is a large broken egg, a tribute to the character Mork. We have datamined an alternate version of Robin dressed like Mork with overalls, so perhaps he will make an appearance here as well.
There are also some stuffed animals and tanks, hinting at a potential tribute to Toys. Our third datamined Robin NPC is also dressed like Mrs. Doubtfire.
Finally, we have datamined a Comedian title--it currently has no source, but it would be fitting if it was tied to this tribute in some way.
Check out all of the screens at Wowhead.com.
Blizzard is sporting an interesting splash page that invites new World of Warcraft players to take on the game for free from now through September 26th, likely right before the release of the v6.0 patch that will lead to the Warlords of Draenor expansion. How this differs from the endless free 1-20 game play remains to be seen. We'll keep you posted.
The media link to our site is a graphic used from some promotions we were running for select players of our other games that haven't tried WoW yet. It's part of an email sent to them.
The free time it's referring too is the 30 day month that all new subscribers get.
Check it out on the World of Warcraft site.
Perhaps signaling the imminent arrival of the pre-expansion v6.0 patch, Blizzard has announced that the Gaze of the Black Prince buff for World of Warcraft will be in effect from September 2-14. The Gaze of the Black Prince assists players with obtaining the necessary resources to create their legendary Pandaria cloaks, a lengthy process that is shortened measurably with the buff.
Blizzard's post specifically states that this is the final time players will have an opportunity to take advantage of the buff, a likely portent to the arrival of the pre-Warlords of Draenor patch, v6.0 that will bring significant changes to all classes and introduce the "bridging" lore preparatory to November's release of the expansion.
Beginning Tuesday, September 2 at 10:00 a.m. PDT, through Tuesday, September 16 at 9:00 a.m. PDT, we’ll be applying the Gaze of the Black Prince buff for the final time before the Warlords of Draenor expansion. This buff will increase the reputation gained with the Black Prince by 100%. It will also increase the chance of obtaining items from his foes needed as a part of the Legendary Cloak quest line including: the Secrets of the Empire, Sigil of Wisdom, Sigil of Power, or Titan Runestones.
Read more on the World of Warcraft community site.
This week I geek out over the new Warlords cinematic, we check out the new Lords of War animated series and inspect the goodies in the Warlords Collector’s edition.
Read more of Reza Lackey's All things Warcraft: The Ramp Up to Warlords.
With the launch for the World of Warcraft expansion, Warlords of Draenor, a scant three months away, Blizzard is beginning to foment excitement as it begins the bridging lore from where the game is now to where it is going with Warlords. To that end, a new short story called "Hellscream" has been published on the community site that can be read there or downloaded into a PDF file.
Garrosh surveyed the Nagrand landscape carefully. No Warsong scouts had come into sight for days. Why would they? This hilltop was on the edge of the clan's territory, and in peacetime, there was little reason to patrol here. Raiding ogres would come from the west. Other orc clans would approach from the east. Even the hunting here was poor during this season, Garrosh remembered.
He had been very young the last time he had sat on this hilltop, and—
No. Garrosh had never sat on this hilltop or climbed these trees or run his fingers through these patches of grass as a child. This was a different world.
Read the rest on the World of Warcraft site.
Since its announcement in November last year, World of Warcraft’s latest expansion has come under a fair share of criticism. Have players been left waiting too long for new content? Does Blizzard’s MMO still hold up after ten years at the top? Can it still hope to bring in new players as it once did?
Read more of Gareth Harmer's World of Warcraft: Addressing the Criticism.
“I don’t know how Blizzard does it every time, but they do it every time,” said GameSpot’s Chris Watters after the cinematic for Warlords of Draenor premiered at the Ace Theatre. The emphasis Watters had in that statement resonated with more than a thousand attendees who watched with bated breath as the event took place. I also watched breathless as the cinematic debuted. Blizzard’s cinematics have always been state-of-the-art examples to the premium quality this company strives to achieve for each of their games.
Read more of Genese Davis's World of Warcraft: It Continues to Surprise Us Year After Year.
After four years in production and the creation of hundreds, if not thousands, of new game-based models, the team finally, on Saturday, August 16th, released War of the Ancients – The Well of Eternity, a nearly two-hour tour de force. We managed to find the doubtless exhausted leads from the project Norbert “Keytal” Szilagyi and A.W.A. “Vaanel” Oemraw to talk about the film.
Read more of Suzie Ford's World of Warcraft: War of the Ancients - The Well of Eternity Brought to Life.
As part of today's World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor release date announcement, Blizzard also released the first two pieces of the bridging series to introduce some of the major clans and personalities from the expansion. The first video introduces the series, the second profiles The Shattered Hand. Check them out below!
In addition, Blizzard has revealed the contents of the physical Warlords of Draenor Collector's Editon:
The Warlords of Draenor Collector’s Edition includes:
- World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor — Get the full version of Warlords of Draenor on DVD-ROM.
- Behind-the-Scenes DVD and Blu-ray Two-Disc Set — Meet the development team behind the creation of Draenor and its savage warlords. This two-disc set includes over an hour of creators’ commentary, insider interviews, and developer roundtables.
- Collector’s Edition Soundtrack — Immerse yourself in the sounds of war with the complete Warlords of Draenor orchestral soundtrack on CD.
- The Art of Warlords of Draenor — Witness the visual evolution of the expansion in this beautifully bound tome of exclusive Warlord of Draenor art. Through 160 pages of concept pieces, finished illustrations, and CG images, you'll delve into the art team’s vision for a Draenor under siege by the apocalyptic threat of the Iron Horde.
- Blackhand Mouse Pad — Arm yourself with a special-edition mouse pad emblazoned with the deadly warlord Blackhand.
Epic In-Game Content
- World of Warcraft Dread Raven Mount and Dread Hatchling Pet — Descend from the skies on the back of a black-winged Dread Raven mount, a mortal progeny of Anzu. Then devour your prey in your next pet battle with the adorably ferocious Dread Hatchling.
- StarCraft II Portraits — Summon the strength of two deadly Iron Horde war chiefs—Grommash Hellscream and Blackhand—as you take on the Dominion with these two StarCraft II portraits.
- Diablo III Warsong Pennant — Don this battle-worn pennant and channel the rage of the Warsong Clan against the demonic forces of Sanctuary.
- Hearthstone Card Back — Your adventures in Draenor will be the talk of the tavern after outfitting your champion’s deck with this custom card back forged in the fires of Blackrock.
Today's World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor opening cinematic event featured the news that the expansion will officially be released on November 13th. You can check the stream log below to find out more about WoD's features, as well as get a look at the opening cinematic.
The first part of the cinematic will also be released as the event kicks off on the World of Warcraft YouTube channel.
Check out the opening cinematic below:
After a passionate petition drive from World of Warcraft players to see Robin Williams immortalized in the game with a special memorial, Blizzard has responded that it is "taking care of it", potentially with a Robin Williams NPC. Robin Williams played WoW for several years and was an avid gamer. Mr. Williams died on Monday, August 11th.
Aug 12, 2014 — An amazing development has just happened, Celestalon has seen the petition and has been quoted as saying "We're taking care of it." Does this mean that in less than one day our goal has been met? Here's hoping! When more information is presented you can be sure it will be shared here. Great job guys.
Read more on the World of Warcraft "Robin Williams NPC" petition page.
The latest Artcraft developer diary for World of Warcraft has been posted. This week's entry features a look at the new Troll character models that will arrive with Warlords of Draenor. Both male and female models are included!
One of the unique challenges for the Troll models were their tusks. In the character customization options, you have the ability to select from a number of tusk “styles.” While other race models (like the Tauren) have similar customization options, the additional modeling, texturing, and animation articulation of the Troll face—and mouth especially—made this a distinctive challenge. We actually had to model the Troll with a flat lower lip; then, for each facial customization option, we went in and posed their lips to naturally wrap around each tusk option.
Check out the entire entry on the World of Warcraft site.
For me, my 2004 game was World of Warcraft. I eagerly awaited both EQ2 and WoW, but after getting into the Closed Beta for the latter, my fate was sealed. Everything about those early Azerothian days seems great in hindsight… until I remember why I quit the first time (lack of level 60 content). But today, I thought I’d pull out one of my fondest Azerothian memories from the fall and winter of 2004, when we were all noobs slinging Chuck Norris jokes in General Chat.
Read more of Bill Murphy's Fond Memories of World of Warcraft's Early Days.
Blizzard Entertainment has taken the wraps off of the first events that will usher in World of Warcraft's 10th anniversary this November. Players will be able to take part in a new PvP experience built around the classic Southshore vs Tarren Mill struggle, gain a new Core Hound mount and snag a Molten Corgi pet simply for logging into these first events.
This November marks the 10-year anniversary of World of Warcraft, and we’re cooking up a few in-game plans to commemorate the occasion. Here’s a quick preview of what’s in store:
Tarren Mill vs. Southshore: The Rematch
If you engaged in PvP early on in WoW, you might have fond memories of—and perhaps a few scars from—the endless tug-of-war between Horde and Alliance players at Tarren Mill and Southshore. To recapture that feeling, we’ll be opening a Team Deathmatch–style Battleground based on that timeless struggle. However, unlike the old days of Tarren Mill vs. Southshore, there will be a clearly defined victor, so you’ll need to work as a team or face crushing defeat.
Molten Core Gets Boosted
Molten Core provided many WoW players with their first taste of WoW raiding. For the anniversary celebration, max-level players will be able to participate in a special 40-player Raid Finder version to relive the experience of hunting down Ragnaros and his minions within his fiery lair. Downing the Firelord will earn you an Achievement and a special Core Hound mount reward (fireproof leg armor not included).
Anyone who logs in during the 10-year anniversary event will also be able to claim a feisty, fiery new pet: the Molten Corgi! Just think of the corgi-parade potential when you and your friends summon these wee waddling balls of fire for a walk.
These events and rewards will only be available for a limited time, so make sure to check back with us later for more information on when you can expect to see all of these events and goodies in-game. ‘Til then, we’re looking forward to celebrating 10 epic years with you!
Source: World of Warcraft community site
The latest Activision Blizzard financial report has been released. The report indicates that profits are up generally but that World of Warcraft has seen a precipitous, if typical, subscription drop off, now numbering 6.8M, down from 7.6M in Quarter 1. Blizzard has attributed the reduction to a typical end of expansion lifecycle. The new report also indicates that over 1.5M copies of the Warlords of Draenor expansion have been preordered and that Diablo 3 has sold over 20M copies.
- As of June 30, 2014, Blizzard Entertainment’s Diablo III: Reaper of Souls remained the #1 PC game in dollars in both North America and Europe and, including its expansion and digital sales, Diablo III has sold more than 20 million copies worldwide across all platforms since its release in 2012.³ Activision Announces Q2 2014 Earnings Results Page 3 of 7
- As of June 30, 2014 , Blizzard Entertainment’s World of Warcraft remains the #1 subscription - based MMORPG , with approximately 6. 8 million subscribers . There was a decline in subscribers quarter over quarter, which was disproportionately concentrated in the East and was similar to the seasonal decline experienced during the second quarter of 2012, prior to the launch of the most recent expansion later that year.
Check out the full financial report for Activision-Blizzard.