The Pre-Cataclysm world event phase 1 introduced new quests to discover the Twilight’s Hammer plot to sway Alliance and Horde citizens to join their cult through doomsayers spreading propaganda about the end of the world of Azeroth.
You may find here screenshots of the entire Alliance questline and video (available in 720p HD, 1080p HD, and lower resolutions).
During the Hallow’s End celebration, Blizzard Entertainment enabled the pre-Cataclysm world event which consists of elemental invasions and a Twilight’s Hammer questline. The cult has agents within the Horde and the Alliance, inciting the people with prophecies of doom and the end of the world of Azeroth.
Doomsayers located at the Drag in Orgrimmar announce an incoming cataclysm, where only those devout will ascend among the elementals and be eternal. All this talk will make more sense when you do the quests of Vash’jir when the Cataclysm expansion is launched.
The Twilight’s Hammer Cult is using the lifeforce of the demigod L’ghorek to transform cultists into Elemental Ascendants. This is what they mean with “ascending into a new way of life beyond death and been reborn” during the world event quests: “Cast off your lives of war and drudgery, be reborn in elements and claim your rightful place in this new world!”
The questline starts with Earthmender Norsala (The Earthen Ring) with the quest titled: The Situation So Far. Make sure to talk to Blood Guard Torek too. Both NPCs stand in front of the Orgrimmar Bank.
We have screenshots of each step through the entire Horde questline, and video (available in 720p HD, 1080p HD and lower resolutions).
The Allliance version will be posted tomorrow.
Therazane the Stonemother got a new model in World of Warcraft: Cataclysm beta v126.96.36.19902. She was a lieutenant of the Old gods until the Titans imprisoned her in the Elemental Plane of Earth: Deepholm.
Before this beta build, Therazane’s model was the same as her daughter Theradras from the Maraudon dungeon. Now she has a very unique and interesting new model. While Theradras stands on her feet over wooden slippers, her mother Therazane gravitates magically over the ground like a massive planet. You can find her at Therazane’s Throne (northern Deepholm). Check out our screenshots and video below. Note: Video available in 1080p HD and 720p HD.
The Cataclysm Beta build 13189 introduced the Kor’Kron Annihilator. Once players reach Guild level 25 and obtain Guild reputation: Exalted, the special mount will be available from the Guild Vendor for 1125 gold.
Take a look at the screenshots and the video.
Oh Shinies! Don’t you love the smell of easy loot? Setesh is one of the four constructs at the Four Seats section of the Halls of Origination in the second floor. His appearance is that of the egyptian deity of chaos: Set (greyhound face).
Setesh can’t be tanked. He is a caster and has a weird aggro table. He will cast up to three Chaos bolts to random players dealing approximately 10,000 chaos damage to each. His hands will glow green while he channels the 3 sec spell.
Within the first ten seconds, Setesh will walk to a corner of the room to cast Chaos Portal. A portal opens up and three type of mobs will spawn: Void Sentinel, Void Seeker and Void Wurms. Don’t panic. Ignore the adds. Some players recommend to kill the Void Seekers, but you will do fine ignoring them and simply focusing DPS on Setesh.
Setesh will open a second portal approximately 30-40 seconds later.
Setesh will often cast a spell that leaves a massive black and green lava spot on the ground. It is easy to detect it. You will see a large purple missile going your way before it lands. Similar to the purple missile cast by Faceless Ones in the Ahkahet: the Old Kingdom. Players standing on this green+black lava spot will get 10,000 damage per tick. Simply run away from it.
Setesh will sometimes stand still to channel a spell that creates several green bubbles within 20 yards around Setesh. It would be smart for melee dps to run away from Setesh while he channels that spell.
This boss is so easy it doesn’t require much of a strategy other than the obvious. The Tank only needs to aggro each mob that comes from the Chaos Portals on each corner Setesh moves up to open them. The healer should conserve mana and just to focus all heals on the tank in my opinion. All DPS players got to burn down Setesh and blow all trinkets and cooldowns. The boss dies within a 1:30 minutes range.
Oh, about the shinies … take a look at the heroic loot item lvl 346 after the video.
Chaos Bolt: a 3 sec spell cast on a random player dealing 8838 – 12547 Chaos damage.
Unknown: A massive green and black spot appears on the ground. Players standing on it will get over 10,000 damage over time.
Unknown: several green bubbles appear around Setesh while he channels the spell.
Chaos Portal: opens a portal which summons in void sentinel, void seeker and void wurm mobs.
Charged Fists: Increases physical damage.
Melee Swing: hits for 8654 – 12487 Physical damage.
Melee Swing: hits for 1710 – 2715 Physical damage.
Ammunae the Construct of Life is one of the four bosses in the Four Seats chamber located in the second floor of the Halls of Origination.
It is a very easy fight if DPS players pay attention. The battle lasts approximately a minute, or a bit longer.
For the whole duration of the fight, Seedling Pods will start spawning at Ammunae’s feet. The Seedling Pods do not have a nameplate, thus the safe way to do this is for two DPS players to press TAB on their keyboard to shift focus from Ammunae to any adds showing up. Kill those pods asap. Taking a look at the combat log, you will notice these Seedling Pods actually heal Ammunae for over 16,000 health. Three pods can potentially heal him for 45,000 health a second.
Therefore, DPS players should constantly attack the boss blowing their trinkets, and pressing TAB to get rid of the pods. If a pod is left unchecked for too long, it will transform into an Elite Bloodpetal flower. Things get really nasty if many of these start showing up and aggro the healer. If many show up, it means the boss have been getting healed by the pods at heart’s desire and will take longer than usual to kill.
There are two spells Ammunae casts often at players every few seconds: Wither and Consume Life Energy. It’s a visible green lightning targeted at a random player. He will look in that player’s direction and the player will levitate above the ground with the strangle animation. The player won’t be able to move or cast for three seconds. I haven’t tried if it can be dispelled. While the combat log doesn’t describe what Wither is, the Consume Life Energy makes Ammunae gain 10 energy per sec for three seconds, and does damage to the afflicted player for that duration.
Safe thing to do is to ignore these, and focus on the true menace: the Seedling Pods.
At some point during the fight, the healer will have to pump AOE heals, or cast Divine Hymn. You will see a huge green shockwave causing around 30,000 damage to all players.
One tip for tanks: dead spores leave a big radius on the ground covered by Noxious Spores which deal nature damage to anyone standing on them including to Ammunae and the Bloodpetals. If you see more than one Bloodpetal, the spores might be a good way to get rid of them. You can try to kite the boss on top of these noxious spores to cause him extra damage (it is an orange stain on the ground).
Energizing Growth: Heals Ammunae for 16598 health.
Noxious Spores: hits all players in range for 11654 Nature damage. It can also damage Ammunae and the Bloodpetal Sprout for 4649 Nature according to the combat log.
Melee Swing: hits for 10328 – 34086 Physical damage.
Consume Life Energy: Ammunae will face in the direction of a random player and cast a green beam from his hand draining life and power. Ammunae gains 10 energy per sec. The player gets a 3 sec debuff causing 3060 – 3667 Nature damage per sec. The player won’t be able to move or cast.
Rampant Growth: a huge green expansion wave that hits all players in 100 yards. Hits for 23705 – 32988 Nature damage.
Wither: No data shows in the combat log. It’s cast often and looks like a blue lightning aimed at a random player. I noticed it is cast on players with mana. Since there’s no combat log description it might mean it doesn’t do damage, but might affect mana, or damage dealt somehow, or increase damage taken.
After defeating Temple Guardian Anhuur, Isiset is my favorite boss to tackle afterwards. She’s the easiest of the four bosses at the Keepers’ Seat section of Halls of Origination.
The strategy to beat this boss is very simple. She has two identical phases. The first phase starts when you get a warning onscreen that Isiset is casting Supernova, she will split into three smaller other-selves named: Celestial Call (summons adds), Veil of the Sky (shield), and Astral Rain (AOE).
All players must turn away their character’s face from Isiset to avoid Supernova. It’s a blinding light that will damage the player affected by 16 – 20k arcane damage and disorient for 3 sec. I purposely take the Supernova a couple of times in our video to demonstrate what happens. You can’t control your character while disoriented. Would be good to pop Bloodlust or Time Stop in phase one.
With Supernova dodged, your next step to be successful in this boss fight is to kill Isiset’s other-self named Astral Rain. All DPS players must assist tank to kill her. She casts a rain of stars which does an AOE damage to all players. Getting rid of her will be less damage to the group in phase two, and giving the healer the chance to save mana management.
After she casts Supernova again, phase two starts. This time she splits into two other-selves. You already killed Astral Rain in phase one. In phase two, focus all your DPS on Celestial Call. Isiset will die very fast once she reincorporates her default body.
One random damage dealer ability that all players most be aware of, including the tank, is the blue beam that chases a random player. Stop what you are doing and simply run around and away from other players. It deals a bit over 10k arcane damage a tick. So the safe thing to do is to be mobile. If you have instant damage abilities use it on your target while running from the blue beam that comes from a portal.
The Veil of the Sky self-duplicate is left for last. One would wonder, why leave the boss with a shield? The answer is simple. Veil of the Sky can be purged by a shaman, or dispelled by a priest or paladin. I haven’t heard yet if a mage can spell-steal (who knows).
Isiset drops a nice healing trinket (item lvl 346) named Blood of Isiset: On equip increases your mastery rating by 285. Your healing spells have a chance to grant 1710 Spirit for 20 sec.
Melee Swing: Hits a player for 10061 (absorbed) – 30697 Physical damage.
Veil of the Sky: hits for 701 Arcane damage.
Astral Rain: hits for 5273 – 6066 Arcane damage.
Supernova: A message onscreen says: “Isiset begins to channel a Supernova. Look away!” A flash of white light blinds the player afflicting for 16671 – 21574 Arcane damage, and disorienting for 3 sec.
Veil of the Sky (self): 10707 – 13607 melee damage.
Astral Rain (self): 12470 – 13607 melee damage. She also casts an AOE named Astral Rain which does 2709 – 5460 Arcane damage. Star missiles fall down from the sky three times in a row.
Arcane Barrage: hits a player for 8774 – 9749 Arcane damage. Run away from the blue beam that chases a random player.
The Heroic Halls of Origination (HOO) can be a challenging place for unprepared players. The very first boss, Temple Guardian Anhuur, is a test of fire for players who enter the Chamber of Prophecy. If each player can’t coordinate and learn their task to beat this boss, the group is destined for failure.
People will come up with the most absurd strategies which end up right on in a wipe, while other players just don’t get which is right and left and jump down on the wrong side of the stairs; or will panic and won’t do the task assigned. I have seen tanks pull the boss before I even finish explaining the event and assigning tasks. This article is aimed to all those players out there who wish to beat this boss in heroic mode to move forward to the other bosses which have the phat lootz.
Bad way to do it
I have seen tanks pull all the snakes in the pit to allow two players to pull both levers. This is a terrible mistake because all those snakes will do a lot of damage, and the healer will be hard-pressed to keep the tank and bystanders alive. The healer will quickly run out of mana in the first phase, and that’s no good because there are two duplicate phases to this boss.
By observation, one strategy in particular has worked very well when I explain it to the group, and they execute it.
Watch for the beams coming from the statues on the ceiling, which leave a blue fire on the ground. Get out of it or you get over 9000 damage a tic while standing in them. Tanks should be always aware of watching not to stand on it. The boss likes to cast it on the tank sometimes.
Around 75% health, Anhuur will say: “Beacons of Light, bestow upon me your aegis.”
Temple Guardian Anhuur becomes protected by his defense beacons. You must disable them by pulling the levers in the pit below.
In Heroic mode, these levers aren’t automatic. They have a 10 sec cast bar, which will be interrupted by snakes.
The way to go in this strategy is to have the tank and a dps jump on the stairs on the left side, instead of directly into the pit. Go downstairs, and pull the three closest snakes between the stairs and the defense beacon’s lever. Another dps player must copy the same pull on three snakes, while the other dps player triggers the other defense beacon’s lever. Note: Some dps classes can pull the three snakes from the bridge (mage, warlock, hunter). Other variation would be for a dps player sending a pet to aggro the three snakes.
Both players on the snakes shouldn’t fight the snakes downstairs. Their only task is to aggro as a distraction while the player who is at the beacon’s lever does his job unmolested. The player on the snakes should run back upstairs immediately after pulling the snakes, and meet on the bridge.
The players at the beacon’s lever should sorta hug the wall along the stairs to prevent aggro from other nearby snakes when going in and out of the pit.
The healer should stand above on the bridge healing the snake pullers on each side to keep them alive until they reach the bridge, and until the other two dps players return from deactivating the levers. No reason to worry about those two players as they only will get damage from Anhuur’s hymn at a slow pace of 2400-4000 damage a tick.
It would be very useful if one of the dps players with an interrupt ability is assigned to interrupt Anhuur’s hymn, because the tank will be slowed down by the snakes to reach the boss in time.
Once everyone is upstairs, start AOE. The boss will come join the party, and that AOE is gonna hit the boss as well. In this strategy, you are only fighting, at most, six snakes (Three from each side). Very good for the healer to handle. At that moment, it wouldn’t hurt to have druid’s tranquility, or a shadow priest’s healing hymn to help the healer.
At around 25% health, Anhuur will go into phase two. Rinse and repeat the previous steps and the boss will bite the dust in defeat.
Congratulations. You owned the first boss in Heroic Halls of Origination.
I recommend going for the bosses on the second floor afterward to get some good loot from Ammunae, Isiset, Rahj and Setesh at the Seats of the Keepers; and to prevent your group from disbanding in either optional bosses from the Vault of Light or the Tomb of the Enrager. The gauntlet boss Anraphet at the Vault of Lights takes a long while fighting four elemental mini-bosses (with no loot) and several groups of troggs.
The Earthrager Ptah hits for 30000 damage, and has a lot of things going on like adds coming in at phase two. You don’t want to risk having people leave without loot.
That can be frustrating to some players and you will rather get secured loot with the main bosses than to risk a group disband against optional bosses. So leave those two for the end, and focus your initial time into the Seat of the Keepers area (second floor).
Temple Guardian Anhuur
Melee Swing: 18949 – 27070 Physical damage. (When blocked: 7105 – 14492 Physical damage).
Divine Reckoning: Anhuur casts this spell at a random player. After around 10 sec, Divine Reckoning dissipates from the target player causing 15420 Divine damage and healing Temple Guardian Anhuur for 57825.
Shield of Light: Anhuur casts this spell every 30% health (phase 1 and 2). Few seconds later, he gains Shield of Light making him immune. A message onscreen will say: “Temple Guardian Anhuur becomes protected by his defense beacons! Disable them by pulling the levers below.” Anhuur will yell: “Beacons of light, bestow upon me your aegis!”.
Reverberating Hymn: All players suffer 1000 – 9000 Holy damage while the hymn is cast. Note: The moment Hymn starts you get a yellow debuff on your right screen which stacks. Each stack increases Holy damage. By the 16th Hymn stack, a player suffers up to 9000 Holy damage per tick.
Burning Light: Anhuur will throw a yellow fire blossom at a random player. A few seconds later, the statue heads on the ceiling will shoot a blue searing light beam at the location where the target player stands. You will see a blue fire on the ground. The player is affected by up to 10228 Divine damage per tick until the player moves away from that spot.
Melee Swing: Hit player for 1016 – 2585 Physical damage.
Poison-tipped Fangs: player suffers 3377 – 4238 Nature damage.
The Alliance and Horde guilds are getting their very own special guild mount rewards, but it requires a lot of effort from all members. The Guild needs to reach Guild level 25 to unlock access to the mount reward from the Guild vendor. However, there is just another roadblock separating each individual member of the guild from acquiring access to the mount reward … you must be exalted with your Guild.
Each time you complete a quest, daily quest, achievements, dungeons and other content in the game you gain guild experience that accumulates to make you friendly, honored, revered or exalted with your guild. You can view this reputation bar under the guild window at the Rewards tab. On the bottom left of the Rewards tab is a short bar indicating how many reputation points you have with the guild.
Once you reach exalted, the guild mount will become available to you for purchase at the guild vendor.
REINS OF THE GOLDEN KING (ALLIANCE)
REINS OF THE KOR’KRON ANNIHILATOR (Horde)
World of Warcraft: Cataclysm introduces Guild Heirloom Rewards obtained through collective completion of achievements, guild reputation and individual increase of guild experience.
Once unlocked globally for all guild members, these heirlooms can be purchased from the Guild Vendor outside Grommash Hold (Goram) or at the Stormwind Visitor Center (Becca Radler) near the Trias’ Cheese store.
Depending on your faction reputation prices may vary drastically as seen in the two price examples below.
|Worn Stoneskin Gargoyle Cape||
900 / 1200g
|Inherited Cape of the Black Baron||
900 / 1200g
|Ancient Bloodmoon Cloak||
900 / 1200g
|Tattered Dreadmist Mask (Cloth)||
1125 / 1500g
|Preened Tribal War Feathers (Leather)||
1125 / 1500g
|Stained Shadowcraft Cap (Leather)||
1125 / 1500g
|Mystical Coif of Elements (Mail)||
1125 / 1500g
|Tarnished Raging Berserker’s Helm (Mail)||
1125 / 1500g
|Polished Helm of Valor (Mail)||
1125 / 1500g
The new Guild System to be introduced in World of Warcraft: Cataclysm offers guildmates several benefits by completing achievements, gaining guild experience, and increasing guild reputation. Once guild members unlock some achievements, the guild gets access to special rewards that may be purchased from the Guild Vendor who may be found outside Grommash Hold (Goram) or at the Stormwind Visitor Center (Becca Radler) near the Trias’ Cheese store.
|Shroud of Cooperation: Teleports the caster to Orgrimmar / Stormwind. (8 Hr cooldown) — Item lvl 35. Requires lvl 35. (Back)||
|Wrap of Unity: Teleports the caster to Orgrimmar / Stormwind. (4 Hr cooldown) — Item lvl 35. Requires lvl 35. (Back)||
|Cloak of Coordination: Teleports the caster to Orgrimmar / Stormwind. (2 Hr cooldown) item lvl 359. Requires level 35 and Master Crafter Guild Achievement (Craft 1,500 Epic items with an item level of at least 359).||
|Guild Page: Teaches you how to summon this companion. (Rare)||
|Guild Herald: Teaches you how to summon this companion. — requires guild achievement Profit Sharing (Loot 50,000 gold from creatures).||
|Dark Phoenix Hatchling: Teaches you how to summon this companion. — requires guild achievement United Nations (Raise 55 reputations to Exalted).||
|Armadillo Pup: Teaches you how to summon this companion. — requires Guild reputation: Exalted.||
|Banner of Cooperation: Place a Guild Battle Standard that increases the experience and honor gain of all guild members that stay within 45 yards of the Battle Standard by 2%. Last 2 min. (15 min cooldown). Requires Guild Reputation: Friendly. Guild Achievement Working as a Team: Obtain 525 skill points in all professions and secondary professions.||
|Standard of Unity: Place a Guild Battle Standard that increases the experience and honor gain of all guild members that stay within 45 yards of the Battle Standard by 4%. Lasts 2 min (15 min cooldown). (Rare)||
|Battle Standard of Coordination: Place a Guild Battle Standard that increases the experience and honor gain of all guild members that stay within 45 yards of the Battle Standard by 6%. Lasts 2 min (15 min cooldown) (Epic).||
|Recipe: Seafood Magnifique Feast: Set out a seafood feast to feed your entire raid or party. Restores 92307 health and 72000 mana over 30 sec. If you spend at least 10 sec eating you will become well fed and gain 90 Stamina and 90 in another useful stat for 1 hour. Requires Cooking 525. Requires Mountain Trout (4), Blood Shrimp (6). Guild Achievement: That’s a Lot of Bait (Catch 10,000 fish from fishing pools). (Rare)||
|Recipe: Broiled Dragon Feast: Set out a dragon feast to feed your entire raid or party. Restores 64903 health and 127500 mana over 30 sec. If you spend at least 10 sec eating you will become well fed and gain 60 Stamina and 60 in another useful stat for 1 hour. Requires Cooking 500. Requires Dragon Flank (6), Delicate Serpent Wing (4). (Rare)||
|Recipe: Cauldron of Battle: Creates a cauldron that raid members can use to gain the benefit of a flask appropriate to their class and talents. Cauldron has 10 uses and lasts for 5 min. Requires Alchemy 525. Guild Reputation: Friendly. Guild Achievement: Mix Master (Create 10,000 Cataclysm flasks).||
|Recipe: Big Cauldron of Battle: Creates a cauldron that raid members can use to gain the benefit of a flask appropriate to their class and talents. Cauldron has 25 uses and lasts for 5 min. Requires Alchemy 525. Requires Flask of Steelskin (3), Flask of the Draconic Mind (3), Flask of the Winds (3), Flask of Titanic Strength (3). Guild Reputation: Friendly. Guild Achievement: Better Leveling Through Chemistry (Create 25,000 Cataclysm flasks).||
|Guild Vault Voucher (7th Slot): Right click to unlock a 7th guild vault tab and allow purchase.||
|Guild Vault Voucher (8th Slot): Right click to unlock a 8th guild tab and allow purchase.||
|Reins of the Golden King (Alliance Only): Teaches you how to summon this mount. Requires Guild level 25. Guild Reputation: Exalted. — epic mount binds to account. Requires Riding 75 and level 20.||
|Reins of the Kor’kron Annihilator (Horde only): Teaches you how to summon this mount. Requires Guild level 25. Guild Reputation: Exalted. — epic mount binds to account. Requires Riding 75 and level 20.||
|Reins of the Dark Phoenix: Teaches you how to summon this mount. Requires guild achievement: Guild Glory of the Cataclysm Raider (Complete the Cataclysm raid achievements listed below while in a guild group. Requires Riding 300 and lvl 70.||
Blizzard Entertainment has rebuilt the world of Azeroth from scratch, added two races, and rebooted low level quests, but that’s not the only thing the house of ideas came up with to keep old customers home, and to bring back goners.
The Guild Perks are a powerful feature to charm players. These are obtained by leveling your Guild Reputation. As your guild levels, all members get a new spell reward which can be found in the spellbook. To the right edge of the spellbook, the last button is the Guild spell list. Most are passive spells, but some can be dragged into your spell bar.
As a beta tester, I have explored and tested some of these features. They are lovely. Personally, I love those you use constantly in dungeons: Mass Resurrection and Have Group, Will Travel.
Paladins no longer have Divine Intervention (Ouch!). Thus you need other ways to recover from a wipe. Let’s say everyone wipes and a warlock failed to renew a soulstone on a priest, druid or paladin. There’s no shaman in your 5-man dungeon. You are all the way at the end of Grim Batol — which is a lengthy dungeon. However, your Hunter, or Mage used their ability to get out of combat. Be it Feign Death, or Invisibility. His guild is gosu and leveled up enough to get Mass Resurrection. Lo and behold, a mage or hunter mass resurrecting the group.
What about those groups or raids without a Warlock to summon people? Or too far away to walk back to the Summoning Stone. No problem. Any guild member of any class with the guild perk Have Group, Will Travel can click the spell button to summon everyone in the raid group to where he stands with a single click.
Remember those annoyi– err tedious — walks from the graveyard to Deadmines’ zone in plus the long walk within the dungeon itself to the point where your group wiped? There are some similar dungeons like Maraudon and Blackrock Depths with long, long tunnels before you reach the zone in. That’s a thing of the past for those who help their guilds level up. One hell of a nice guild perk is The Quick and the Dead. It allows players to run at 100% speed in ghost form. You have never experienced running and jumping the tunnels of Deadmines at blazing speeds.
Other perks help your guild members increase reputation, experience, tradeskill items per attempt, mount speed, vendor prices, and oh my, so much more. Aren’t you already salivating to get your hands on the Cataclysm expansion? Take a look at the list of Guild Perks below:
|Bartering: Reduces the price of items from all vendors by 5%. (Obtained at guild lvl 24)|
|Bountiful Bags: Increases the quantity of materials gained from Mining, Skinning, Herbalism, and Disenchanting. (Obtained at guild lvl 23)|
|Cash Flow (Rank 1 / 2): Each time you loot money from an enemy, an extra 5% / 10% money is generated and deposited directly into your guild bank. (Obtained at guild lvl 10 / 16)|
|Chug-A-Lug (Rank 1 / 2): The duration of buffs from all guild cauldrons is increased by 50% / 100%. (Obtained at guild lvl 10/22)|
|Fast Track (Rank 1 / 2): Experience gained from killing monsters and completing quests increased by 5% / 10%. (Obtained at guild lvl 2/6)|
|For Great Justice: Increases Justice points gained by 10%. (Obtained at guild lvl 18)|
|G-Mail: In-game mail sent between guild members now arrives instantly. (Obtained at guild lvl 17)|
|Happy Hour: Increases the number of flasks gained from using a flask cauldron by 100%. (Obtained at guild lvl 20)|
|Hasty Hearth: Reduces the cooldown on your Hearthstone by -15 minutes. (Obtained at guild lvl 8 )|
|Have Group, Will Travel: Summons all raid or party members to the caster’s current location. 5.24 sec cast. 2 hour cooldown. (Obtained at guild lvl 21)|
|Honorable Mention (Rank 1 / 2): Increases Honor points gained by 5% / 10%. (Obtained at guild lvl 13 / 19)|
|Mass Resurrection: Brings all dead party and raid members back to life with 35 health and 35 mana. Cannot be cast when in combat. (Obtained at guild lvl 25)|
|Mobile Banking: Summons a Guild Crest that allows access to your guild bank for 5 min. Only guildmembers with guild faction of friendly and above are allowed to use a Guild Crest. 2.62 sec cast. 1 hour cooldown. (Obtained at guild lvl 11)|
|Mount Up: Increases speed while mounted by 10%. Not active in Battlegrounds or Arenas. (Obtained at guild lvl 3)|
|Mr. Popularity (Rank 1 / 2): Reputation gained from killing monsters and completing quests increased by 5 / 10%. (Obtained at guild lvl 4/12)|
|Reinforce (Rank 1 / 2): Items take 10% / 20% less durability loss when you die. (Obtained at guild lvl 7/9)|
|The Quick and the Dead: Increases health and mana gained when resurrected by a guild member by 50% and increases movement speed while dead by 100%. Does not function in combat or while in a Battleground or Arena.|
|Working Overtime: Increases the chance to gain a skill increase on tradeskills by 10%.|
TOKYOPOP Editor Troy Lewter sent my way an early copy of WORLD OF WARCRAFT: SHADOW WING, in terms you can remember from an early interview of mine with Richard A. Knaak, it is the first volume of a trilogy titled DRAGONS OF OUTLAND, in which we learn the lore that led toward Malygos’s return to his senses from his milennia insanity and the Nexus War against the Kirin Tor and the Wyrmrest Accord.
The manga will be at a bookstore near you on June 1, 2010; but if you need a little jumpstart to get your engines going, I have written a lengthy article that mentions a few key moments of this story, without necessarily spoiling it too much. Just enough for you to get a grasp of what the first installment of this manga trilogy is about.
Without further ado, and minding a few spoilers here and there, feast my lore-hungered boys. Tip: Jorad Mace, Tyrigosa, the Nether Dragons, Deathwing and an original second war Death Knight on the loose in Outland.
If you loved the stories within Warcraft Legends, be prepared to get bewitched by World of Warcraft: Shadow Wing.
This manga trilogy is based on the two characters from the pages of WarCraft: The Sunwell Trilogy. The very same manga that spawned the likes of Kalecgos, and Anveena (known in-game at the Sunwell Plateau dungeon), Trag Highmountain (known in-game at the Argent Tournament Grounds in Icecrown) and Dar’Khan Darthir (found in-game at Deatholme in the Ghostlands, Quel’Thalas).
Like all of these characters who first were born in the TOKYOPOP manga, and appeared in-game time later during the Burning Crusade expansion, both protagonists of WORLD OF WARCRAFT: SHADOW WING were born in THE SUNWELL TRILOGY and became quest NPCs in the Burning Crusade.
You can find both, Jorad Mace and Tyrigosa, at the Celestial Ridge in the region known as Netherstorm in Outland. To refresh your memory, Tyri (or Tyrigosa the blue dragon) gives you the quest to kill Veraku — the leader of the Nether Drakes in Netherstorm.
Her quests: A Promising Start, Securing the Celestial Ridge, and Troublesome Distractions. Ok, you got the idea. This manga gives you a prologue to their adventures in Outland, before those quests. How they got into Outland, and how they happen to learn about the Nether Drakes. That’s all in WORLD OF WARCRAFT: SHADOW WING.
The story by Richard A. Knaak is very fluid and packed with action in all fronts between the Burning Legion and the Alliance forces at the Dark Portal’s Stair of Destiny in Hellfire Peninsula, dragon against dragon, Gronn versus dragon, Ragnok’s forces against our heroes, and much more.
All brought to awesome detail by artist Jae-Hwan Kim: face expressions, body details, background details. The inker and texture makes this entire manga be a yummy sight. I’m not sure if the artist inked it, or Marco Paolilli, but it looks astounding. Jae-Hwam Kim’s art style and Richard A. Knaak’s writing are a perfect match for World of Warcraft: Shadow Wing. No wonder this manga took so long in the making.
Storywise, Jorad Mace comes to Outland with the Alliance forces to fend off the Burning Legion’s advancement into the Stair of Destiny in Hellfire Peninsula under the vigilance of Lord Irulon Trueblade of the Argent Crusade.
Jorad Mace continues his quest to make himself worthy and redeem his past transgressions against the former Silver Hand. The Light abandoned him long ago before the events of Warcraft: The Sunwell Trilogy, and he seeks to be worth of the return of the Light into his being.
On a separate quest, Tyrigossa has come into Outland hunting down a disturbance too familiar for her taste. She can’t pinpoint what it is, or how it relates to her hunches but she has come to seek it. It turns out to be the Nether Dragons. Are they friend or foe? Sadly both. Zzeraku sees her as a foe, but Valoku wishes to befriend the blue dragon.
“Wait hold it there, Medievaldragon — that name rings a bell.” — hah, I read your mind, eh? Yes, the same Zzeraku that became a prisoner of Lady Sinestra at Grim Batol in the novel World of Warcraft: Night of the Dragon by Richard A. Knaak. Except, we get to see the recent past before he was captured by her. Remember Dragons of Outlands was delayed for a few years before the release of the former.
We get to see an image of Deathwing as shown in the World of Warcraft: Cataclysm concept art when Tyrigosa senses the familiar magical signature in one of the black dragon skeletons found in the Nether Dragons’ lair in Blade’s Edge Mountains.
We see the interaction of Jorad Mace and Tyrigosa with the Draenei Broken tribe of Hellfire Peninsula as allies. The first encounter between the Alliance and the draenei of the Temple of Telhamat, and the introduction of Ragnok Bloodreaver — one of the original Death Knights created by Gul’dan, still in his decaying human host.
That bears some explaining for those who missed Warcraft II. During the final throes of the Second War, Warchief Orgrimm Doomhammer ordered the Horde to slay the Shadow Council. Only Gul’dan survived because he was catatonic after his mind-melding (so-to-speak) with Medivh at the moment of his death.
Gul’dan pleaded Orgrimm for his life, and offered an army of dead risen human knights holding magics to counter the Alliance’s mages. What Gul’dan didn’t tell Orgrimm was that these human corpses would be risen as hosts for the spirits of the slain Shadow Council — thus creating the original Death Knights, of which Teron Gorefiend was the first, and Ragnok Bloodreaver one of them.
It is wildly rumored by lore fans that this Ragnok might be the same mentioned in the novel World of Warcraft: Beyond the Dark Portal by Aaron Rosenberg and Christie Golden. So far, I can’t confirm if that’s true yet.
Ragnok Bloodreaver wishes to become the new master of Outland, and plans to conquer Azeroth as well. Obviously, he is not aligned with Illidan nor the Dragonmaw Clan. He seeks to destroy Illidan and all his forces in the Black Temple with the use of the Nether Dragons, employing the services of Kadavan, a mercenary Ethereal who uses his magical technology to hunt down and capture the behemoths. Ragnok is even assaulting the Dragonmaw Clan to steal the Nether Drakes controlled by them.
Ragnok has his own cadre of Fel Orcs, probably stolen from Hellfire Citadel’s surroundings and some of the Dragonmaw are threatened to be killed by the Death Knight if they disobey or fail his orders, following him unquestionably.
Comparing both MAGE and SHADOW WING, I feel more inclined for the latter. It’s well executed with a lot of action, mystery and drama. The pacing resembles much what some of us are accustomed with comic books from panel to panel interweaving plot after plot from different points of view.
I can’t wait for volume two to come out. Expect World of Warcraft: Shadow Wing Volume 2: The Nexus Point on November 2010. And the third part somewhere in 2011.
Don’t go thinking “Meh, this is a wannabe non-canon story” because you are wrong. Most of what Knaak writes is outlined to him by Blizzard Creative Team, and he fleshes out, then the developers add the story and characters into being in the MMO. It’s canon. The TOKYOPOP editor Troy Lewter, who sent me a copy of this manga a month before it goes into bookstores (on June 1) wrote an afterword located near the final pages of this manga.
There Paul Morrissey and Troy Lewter thank the people behind this story, including Richard A. Knaak, Jae-Hwan Kim, and the Blizzard Entertainment’s Creative Development Team: Jason Bischoff, Joshua Horst, James Waugh, Micky Neilson, Evelyn Fredericksen, Samwise Didier, Tommy Newcomer, Cameron Dayton and the thundergod, bourbon cowboy, father of Warcraft lore hmself — Chris Metzen. Did I miss any title? (chuckles) Ok. All-seeing and loved VP of Creative Design too, but that be the lesser of his titles before his loyal fanboys — myself included. He’s up there along with the legends: Stan Lee, H.P. Lovecraft, J. R. R. Tolkien, Gene Roddenberry, George Lucas, and many others loved by fans of Fantasy and Sci-fi genres. Ok. Enough boot-licking. Koff.
Get your copy of WORLD OF WARCRAFT: SHADOW WING. You won’t regret collecting the trilogy. It looks very promising, and dare I say rival previous WarCraft manga in lore and awe.
This is the missing story that gaps World of Warcraft: Night of the Dragon and the Nexus War. From this trilogy comes the truth behind Malygos’ cure and decision to start an all-out war against the Kirin Tor and the Wrymrest Accord.
And from the picture of Deathwing as seen in World of Warcraft: Cataclysm’s concept art, dare I say we will learn more than we could possibly guess as a tie-in with the upcoming expansion? You bet.
Check out the preview images of WORLD OF WARCRAFT: SHADOW WING.
The first volume of the manga takes us to Hellfire Peninsula, Dragonmaw areas in Shadowmoon Valley, and Blade’s Edge Mountains.
Lord Irulon Trueblade – is one of the characters who led the incursion into Outland to fend off the demons from accessing Azeroth during the Burning Crusade in this manga. You can find him in the Howling Fjord at Valgarde currently in Wrath of the Lich King.
Lord Trueblade oversaw Jorad Mace’s progress to redemption, but initially gave him more humbling tasks to do such as helping with the construction of their outpost.
Amaan the Wise – from the Temple of Telhamat in Hellfire Peninsula appears in the manga with a convoy of Draenei to introduce his people to Lord Duron, Commander of the Alliance Forces at the Stair of Destiny in the Dark Portal, Hellfire Peninsula.
The Broken – (Krokul in draenei old tongue)
Warrith – leader of the Broken in Hellfire Peninsula, and father of Valwar.
There is reference to how Gruul and the Gronn killed the black dragons at Blade’s Edge Mountains as revealed in World of Warcraft: Beyond the Dark Portal.
Some of the creatures we see in the manga are:
Shivan (six-armed demoness)
After reading World of Warcraft: Mage (read my review, I discovered an interview held by Tokyopop editors with Paul Benjamin in the last pages.
The interview is about his upcoming manga titled World of Warcraft: Shaman.
I am going to post that interview in this article, but before that I just want to kick the Beehive to shake lore fans and fill them with interest. Check it out on October 2010 folks, because that’s when you will learn more about that mysterious character revealed in the pages of White Wolf’s World of Warcraft RPG: Dark Factions … High Shaman Muln Earthfury, leader of the Earthen Ring.
All hope rests with the shaman, who are able to commune with the elements. Muln Earthfury, the shaman leader of the secretive Earthen Ring, attempts to pacify the elements — but his pleas fall on deaf ears. The elements are unresponsive, full of confusion and chaos. The Earthen Ring is riddled with doubt. Have the shaman lost their ability to corral and guide the elements?
Mysteriously, Shotoa arrives. This Tauren shaman doesn’t just merely tend to the elements — he forces them to do his bidding. Shotoa promises to lead the Earthen Ring into a new era of Shamanism … As the world crumbles around them, Muln and the Earthen Ring must decide if Shotoa is a hero or a heretic …
Written by Paul Benjamin (StarCraft: Frontline) and drawn by Roccio Zucchi (World of Warcraft: Death Knight), WORLD OF WARCRAFT: SHAMAN ties into the upcoming World of Warcraft: Cataclysm expansion in stunning ways!
Available October 2010.
Is it safe to assume that you’ve played a fair amount of WARCRAFT? Do you have a favorite class to play?
Benjamin: My main is a pally retadin. That’s a paladin built to do lots of damage for any noobs reading this (Hi, Mom!). I tend to do a fair amount of solo play because if I play with a group I’m on for too long and wouldn’t make any of my Warcraft writing deadlines! The pally is great for soloing because I can heal myself and do plenty of damage. That said, I do have a lot of fun playing with guildies or doing random heroics when I’ve got the time. ANd, of course, since writing SHAMAN I’ve really been digging my new shammy character as well.
Give the fans the inside scoop on WORLD OF WARCRAFT: SHAMAN. What’s the story about? Is it true that it will tie into the upcoming CATACLYSM expansion?
Benjamin: SHAMAN is the tale of a group many players have seen around Azeroth and beyond: the Earthen Ring. The main characters are Muln, the tauren High Shaman of the Earthen Ring, and his orc apprentice, Kettara Bloodthirst. The focus is on them and the elder council of the Earthen Ring, so I’ve gotten to write dranei and trolls as well as a few very important (and well known) orcs from Orgrimmar. The secrets of CATACLYSM are quite closely guarded at the time of this writting, but there’s a lot of connection between this book and the upcoming expansion. I can tell you that the elements are in upheaval adn that’s wreaking chaos with the powers of Muln and the Earthen Ring.
SHAMAN is a story about tradition versus change and choosing which one is more important. It’s also full of shaman calling down lightning, summoning elementals and manifesting totems to help them smack down any monsters stupid enough to threaten the shaman way of life. And it’s all beautifully illustrated by DEATH KNIGHT artist Roccio Zucchi, so I imagine fans will be as excited to read the book as I have been to see those pages coming in as she works!
Richard A. Knaak receives a lot of good feedback, which translates in the success and sale of World of Warcraft and Diablo novels, and some bad feedback from the minority.
The way I see it, there is room for every type of writer, and each has their own technique and style. There’s room for everyone. And Richard A. Knaak has a tall condo, not just a room.
The artwork by Ryo Kawakami is not very detailed when it comes to backgrounds, like Jae-Hwan Kim or my favorite, Hector Sevilla; but Troy Lewter — the editor — does mention in the back of the manga that they were on a deadline, and the artist was pretty swift in making things happen within that deadline. So, let’s be forgiving, and see other work of Ryo.
I either like a style or dislike it. I like the artwork in World of Warcraft: Mage. Some people may think otherwise.
There’s a difference between manga and comic books, and while I am new to the manga world, I welcome the style.
I have always said I am not really into manga, but there are many styles and I do dig my first incursion into reading manga: Starcraft: Frontline, Warcraft Legends, and World of Warcraft: Death Knight are pretty cool art-wise.
I am more a comic book reader having a large collection of all kind of X-men titles, and some Avengers and West Coast Avengers. I also check out the latest previews of all kind of Marvel Comics titles (not just X-men) at Newsarama.
There’s a lot of new artists with great styles, but from my early incursions into comic books back in 1996, I like Joe Madureira, Ian Churchill, Chris Bachalo, Alex Ross, and others. Their styles are very different from one another.
If anything, I welcome different styles, and open-minded to taste other people’s work — in both fields actually: writers and artists.
I do hate some artists’s styles more than others, nevertheless, but rarely. Coughs-José Ladrönn. Sorry dude, you ruined it for me in CABLE.
Decade-old-rant aside, I read an advance review copy of World of WarCraft: Mage, thanks to Troy Lewter [TOKYOPOP editor].
The very-short description of the book released last April 2, and its front cover could barely offer fans any grasp at info to form a guess.
Reading the manga, I am surprised at how Knaak weaved the story behind the Nexus War’s assault on Dalaran.
We see how the Azure Ley Dragon Cyanigosa, dragonkin and drakonids got access into the Violet Hold, bypassing and weakening Dalaran’s outer magical-shield.
It all came from within. From the cover, you might think Rhonin and this mysterious kid Aodhan work together all along from beginning to end of the story, but that’s clearly not true for most of the first half of the manga.
Aodhan is a reckless kid who tries hard to demonstrate his abilities, who wishes to prove worthy to his father and to himself by one day becoming part of Dalaran’s defenses.
He is taught by Master Simeon, a Dalaran mage trainer, who keeps Aodhan pressed to the limit because he considers the kid needs to learn to be patient and focused before leveling up in rank even when he surpasses any other student in skill for those at the same level. The kid simply rushes recklessly without measuring the possible consequences.
There is a bit of lore thrown in into the mix about the Book of Argaleus the Crafter who lived centuries ago. Myth says he learned the spell language written on this special book from Malygos. Among the marks on the book can be seen the All-seeing Eye of the Kirin Tor.
The opening of rifts within the Violet Hold was not the first attempt. It had been breached before, with help of Aothan and his uncle Crevan. This explains why some of the cells in the Violet Hold prison are empty. Some of the lesser beings such as a fire revenant, ogre magi, and a void terror (like Immol’thar in Dire Maul west) were locked within, and freed to cause a distraction from the true target that would destroy Dalaran.
We get to see Archmage Modera, Rhonin and Archmage Aethas Sunreaver in action fending off the Azure Ley dragons from bypassing the outer shield of Dalaran, but no real background or lore about these three Kirin Tor council members.
The story focuses on Aodhan the mage apprentice, his attunement to magic which promises to see him one day as a powerful mage.
Richard A. Knaak shifts his story-telling back and forth between the present to the past to explore the origins of Aodhan, his family, and his motives to become a great mage.
However, we learn the true meaning of being a mage is not about controlling magic, but to humbly learn to wield magic for the benefit of everyone, not oneself.
World of Warcraft: Mage contains an interview about World of Warcraft: Shaman — revealed to be written by Paul Benjamin and art by Roccio Zucchi.
It also contains a preview of WORLD OF WARCRAFT: SHADOW WING, VOL. 1: THE DRAGONS OF OUTLAND. The same exclusive preview TOKYOPOP and Blizzard granted Blizzplanet a few weeks ago.
Check out our recently-released exclusive preview of World of Warcraft: Mage.
Don’t forget to participate on our giveaway of World of Warcraft: Mage while it lasts.
World of Warcraft: Mage hits bookstores on June 1, 2010. Pre-order it here.
Starcraft: Heaven’s Devils by William C. Dietz will be on sale April 6, 2010 — but I got an early copy some time ago to show you a preview. This is the first StarCraft novel published as a Hardcover. The artwork in the front cover shows Jim Raynor on his Marine suit. You can see the visor matches that of the Jim Raynor Noobz given away at last BlizzCon 2009′s swag bag.
The book comes with a detachable dustjacket which contains the front cover’s artwork. All the latest Warcraft hardcovers from Gallery Books (a division of Simon & Schuster) and even DC Comics’ Starcraft Hardcover come with a dustjacket design. The one thing I love about that is that it gives you the option to frame the dustjacket as your own piece of art — pretty good for those who wish to collect them, and hang the frames on the Office or bedroom’s wall. Those wondering, the artwork on the dustjacket was drawn by Glenn Rane. The dustjacket was designed by Alan Dingman.
When you open the book, you can see the flaps of the dustjacket wrapped around the Hardcover. On the left flap is a short excerpt of the novel, and on the other side is the photo of William C. Dietz and his bios. The first and last page have the Heaven’s Devils insignia
In the StarCraft: Heaven’s Devils‘s interior you can find four full-color artworks by the Starcraft II Art Team. The first artwork shows the Heaven’s Devils squad led by Jim Raynor. This is the photo that you will be able to view in-game in the Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty single-player at the Joe Ray’s Bar in Mar Sara, after Tychus Findlay enters the Bar. The photo can be found at the interactive bulletin board.
The second image is the Fight for Freedom poster featuring Jim Raynor in his Marine suit, which has the Raynor’s Raiders insignia on the right shoulder. We saw both posters at the computer room during our visit to the Blizzard’s studios in Irvine.
The third artwork describes a scene within the novel’s story where Kydd, Harnack and Jim Raynor flee a local police car aboard Jim Raynor’s Vulture hovercraft. The final artwork shows Jim Raynor on his Marine suit and Tychus Findlay back in the old days.
The four artwork samples were illustrated by Wei Wang, Steve Hui, and Luke Mancini from Blizzard Entertainment.
One thing that caught my eye and that truly makes me love this novel is its StarCraft Timeline in the back. It spans 13 pages in length, not only telling you what happened since the 16th Century, but also showing you book references. Every single StarCraft book since 2001 is referenced in the StarCraft Timeline, in case you wish to buy that book from a local or online bookstore.
Order online here:
DC Comics recently sent me a copy of the Starcraft Hardcover Vol. 1 which compiles issue # 1-7. This product will be available on sale this upcoming April 13, 2010 for those who missed the comic book ongoing series.
Although the ongoing series has been canceled with issue # 7, Wildstorm recently announced they will change format to Graphic Novel. There is no ETA yet when, but we will keep you updated when anything new gets announced.
In the meantime, here you have a video of the unpacking of the Starcraft Hardcover, and what’s inside as a sneak peek for those who might be interested in purchasing the trade paperback in hardcover format. The street price is $19.99, but some bookstores online have it priced for $13.49.
Order online here:
J!NX has a new San Valentine’s Day or “Love is in the Air” T-shirt on sale! It is the Kwee Q. Peedlefeet T-Shirt for World of Warcraft players. Cute gift for a girlfriend, and friends.
Use the code: ZOMBIELOVE at check out to get a 20% discount on any purchase greater than $40 or more. Valid until 02/14/2010. Not valid with any other offer.