Yojamba Isle: Guardians of Blizzard Unleashed!

Tseric informed that Blizzard unleashed the Guardians of Blizzard to stop player from accessing the turn in of reputation with Zandalar Faction.  It seems there is an exploit in Zul’Gurub.  For those who do not know what a Guardian of Blizzard is, back on Closed Beta, Blizzard would place a massive Infernal of over 20 feet tall with the name Guardian of Blizzard.  As soon as you got near a radius of 20 feet you would insta-die.  Death aura.  This would prevent players from accessing unreleased content like Silithus, Felwood and Winterspring were at one time during Closed Beta.  A sight to behold and fear.

Tonight, we found an exploit that people were using to gain faction with the Zandalar Trolls with little to no effort at all. As such, we unleashed the Guardians of Blizzard from their cages to ensure that people were not getting too friendly with the Zandalar trolls without putting in their proper dues first.

We certainly apologize for the inconvenience this might have caused to our players but we felt it was in the best interest of our newest residents of Azeroth, the Zandalar Trolls, to do so.

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Patch 1.8 downloadable at US Test Servers

Stay tuned for an official announcement of Patch 1.8 in World of Warcraft US Test Servers. If you have the Test Server client, go login. Servers are live. After you install the patch, go to your account and copy your character onto the Test Server.  Login and you are ready to go.  Please, be aware that this patch notes are from Test Servers—which means this is not the final patch notes for the Retail Live servers as things will change due to bug fixes, balancing and new additions of content during the development of the final version.  Emerald Dream instance may be very close on a upcoming patch after 1.9 based on what can be read.  Check out the patch notes below:

All Servers Restart: Exploit Detected

Exploiters busted and ready for a Smackdown.  Blizzard announced all servers will be restarted on Wednesday as a measure to stop a new discovered exploit.  No further details about the exploit was mentioned, but promised to offer details at a later time after they have dealt with coding to counter it.  All offenders will be suspended or banned from using
World of Warcraft.  It is interesting how fast Blizzard detected the exploit and
acts quickly just after today’s Maintenance Schedule.

Tseric: “We will be issuing rolling restarts to all realms beginning at
4:00 AM PDT on 9/28/05. This will be done to close an exploit which we will
provide more information on at a later time.

In the meantime, our current GM policy, in terms of intended exploitation,
still stands and those in breach of said policy will be handled accordingly.”

Update: On Wednesday, Eyonix revealed the exploit was happening within Blackwing Lair:

“This morning we issued rolling restarts for all realms in order to apply a hotfix which closed an exploit in the Nefarian encounter located in Blackwing Lair. Each of the realms has been brought back up, and the hotfix successfully applied. We thank you for your patience and understanding in this matter.

To clarify from previous posts, Last night we hotfixed part of the Nefarian encounter. Specifically, you should no longer be able to stand on various parts of the geometry and cause the Drakonids, Nefarian or the skeletons to go into evade mode.  Forcibly trying to put creatures into evade mode is considered an exploit, on any encounter.  As for crediting serverwide first kills as legitimate or not, that’s not something that we’ve ever done. If we felt a specific guild was exploiting an encounter or had exploited an encounter to defeat it, our GM staff would contact them and take appropriate measures.”

Nefarian Was Defeated!!!

We got word from a fan that Nefarian—black dragon from Blackwing Lair has been defeated for first time by Drama Guild from Shatterhand Realm(US Server).  The item drops were very juicy as you can see below.  Mcfizz, a level 60 Hunter Elf from Drama Guild said the following:

“One thing is for sure.  We are a much stronger guild than we were when we first stepped foot into Blackwing Lair. The zone was difficult enough to make us better players by conquering it.  As for the itemization, I know a lot of items were made with the hope of future improvements, and just me personally, don’t feel that the item loot reflects the difficulty of the mobs.

Compared to the Molten Core, only real point of reference, the zone and the boss fights are very creative and unique. It was not the old fashioned “tank it ‘n spank it” of Molten Core.  All in all, I feel that Blizzard did a good job on the zone and have faith that Ah’Qiraj will release a lot smoother when Blizzard releases patch 1.9. Looking forward to it and Good Luck all in Blackwing Lair!”

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Warcraft III Ladder Reset

The Warcraft III Battle.net ladders have been reset. Along with the reset, Blizzard has introduced upgrades to the Automated Matchmaking (AMM) system and updated the ladder-map pools for all formats. For more information about Season III and the AMM changes, please visit their preview here.

Silithus Preview: Patch 1.8

Blizzard released a new preview for Silithus, promised to be a major quest hub on patch 1.8—this looks promising. Ah’Quiraj instance will open on the next release in patch 1.9.  Based on the World of Warcraft storyline from Blackfathom Deeps down to Molten Core, everything points toward the Expansion having something to do with the awakening of the Old gods. Patch 1.8 finally introduces the long lost Explorer’s League Prospector Brann Bronzebeard as an NPC near the Scarabl Wall of Ah’Quiraj leading an expedition to study relics.

“Since the beginning of recorded history, Azeroth has seen the most terrible conflicts imaginable. The War of the Ancients and the Sundering of the World. The coming of the Tides of Darkness. The return of the Burning Legion, the Scourge of Lordaeron and the rise of the Lich King. Yet all this time, deep beneath the shifting sands of Silithus, an unspeakable horror has been lying in wait, ever patient, and ever enduring. Mortal hands are at work awakening an ancient menace that, once set lose, will shake the very foundations of this world. Evil is stirring where mortals were never meant to tread. The world is waiting for a champion to step forward and stop the coming darkness before it is too late.

The time has finally come for the hero to assume the role fate has bestowed upon him.

To learn more about the changes coming to Silithus, take a moment to read the Introduction to Silithus…”

Ancient forces stir in the heart of the Silithus desert – forces that have not been seen or felt for thousands of years. When the next content patch releases, adventurers will take note of a foulness that has seeped into the land of Silithus. This zone has been overhauled and is now major quest hub with episodic storylines that will send adventurers into its depths and past its borders. The redesign of this zone includes high-end outdoor quest areas for solo players, 5-man groups and mini-raids. Silithus is loaded with repeatable quests and bosses, providing a more casual alternative to dungeon raiding. Will you uncover the secrets of Silithus?

  • Advance the story of Silithus through a brand new and exciting quest chain!
  • Engage in solo, group and raid-level content as you fight the Twilight’s Hammer cult and their elemental masters in the Abyssal Council!
  • Cenarion Hold – a brand new quest hub for both Horde and Alliance!
  • All new triggered outdoor raid content!
  • Repeatable quests which allow players to build their faction with the Cenarion Circle!
  • Brand new Graveyard and Flight point for both factions!

BlizzCon Concert Band Revealed!

Blizzard revealed the mystery band to play at the closing of BlizzCon Event through October 28-29 in Anaheim, California; where Starcraft: Ghost and World of Warcraft expansion will be features. The Offspring Band is gonna rock your socks off!

Blizzard announced that the closing-night concert at BlizzCon will feature multi-platinum recording artists The Offspring! The band established itself internationally with the hit singles “Come Out and Play (Keep ‘Em Separated),” “Self Esteem,” and “Gotta Get Away” from their 1994 album Smash, which went on to become the most successful independent release of all time. Most recently, The Offspring released Greatest Hits, a career-spanning compilation of their most memorable songs.

Visit the BlizzCon site to learn more about the event, scheduled for October 28 and 29 in Anaheim, CA, and check out the press release for more information about the closing-night The Offspring concert

Press Release
TheOffspring Homepage

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Instance Limit

… and on the last day, he clapped and all farmers sobbed as their economy lowered down

Wow-Europe announced some changes made in the last Maintenance schedule that will limit the amount of instances per hour that a player can enter to.  This move by Blizzard seems to serve as a smackdown to certain players.  This will affect cheaters, multi-instance resetters and farmers most likely, since it doesn’t represent a big deal to normal players.  Here is what Thundgot said:

“During this Wednesday?s weekly maintenance, we will be implementing code into the game that will limit the amount of unique instances a player can enter. This new code should relieve the realm wide instance instability issues for legitimate players that were caused by players trying to exploit the instances.

Since many have questions about how the new system works, and why it was implemented. The new system works like this; You can enter up to 5 unique instances per hour. If you try to enter a 6th instance in less than an hour after you entered the first, you will be blocked from doing so. You must wait 1 hour from the time you enter the first instance before you will be able to enter any others. This does not apply to PvP instances, nor do PvP instances count towards your total. The same goes for the Tram and officers’ barracks (which aren’t instances).”

Blizzplanet Update: News Headlines

After almost two months of procrastina—Coughs!—hard work, DarkNemesis finished Blizzplanet’s News Headlines coding.  We hope that you find it useful.  The Headlines above are divided by Game type:  World of Warcraft, Starcraft: Ghost, Starcraft, Diablo II, Warcraft III.  Soon, or hopefully sooner than later, Blizzplanet will have sub-sites for each game where we can provide content per game, from Lore, features, to files.  Special thanks to Darknemesis, chief programmer and to Draco—Server Manager for fixing some technical issues with how Mysql databases were slowing down the site.  Apologies for the downtime it caused while under maintenance.

RP-PvP: Summer’s End Event

Shadowed Tribe is holding a celebration in honor of the Goddess Elune. The celebration will be held on Sunday the 2nd of October in Darnassus, in the Temple of the Moon, at 6pm server time. Anyone is welcome to attend, but we ask you to please respect the intent of the event, as being role-play and a celebration. Disruptions will be dealt with swiftly. If you wish to participate in the celebration by addressing those gathered, please contact Melisse, Thalassa, or Swan, or visit this thread (http://bottribe.net/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=71) and post your request.  Read more details at the RP-PvP Community

Event: Tela en Laire (Summer’s End)
Date: Sunday, October 2
Time: 6pm server time
Location: Darnassus, Temple of the Moon
Sponsor: Shadowed Tribe

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Weather Effects in the Works

A new weather system soon to be tested. Get ready for the rains and storms!  Eyonix shared with the community the progress of the Developing Team on Weather Effects.  Three new Weather types are been tested at this point.  However, there is no ETA for the release of this new feature.

Eyonix: “The development progress for weather effects continues to move forward, and before long we hope to offer additional information on the subject. I will offer up one exciting bit of information – currently, three types of weather are “in the works”, each one designed to bring Azeroth to life in a unique fashion.

I’ll wait for a more appropriate time to unveil the specifics.”

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Warlock Class Changes by Patch 1.8

Patch 1.8 will introduce many significant changes for the Warlock Class.  Death Coil,  Pyroclasm and Damage over Time(DOT) have been tweaked around in the internal build for patch 1.8—and the new talent Bane reduces casting time for Shadowbolt, Soul fire and Immolation spells.  For patch 1.9, end-game pets now will have higher DPS and are being tested by the QA Department.  However, Talent Ruin has been nerfed slightly to balance the new improvements, but not by much as commented by Eyonix.  For Shard bag details read here

  • Death Coil – The cooldown on this spell has been reduced to two minutes and there will now be a short duration (3 sec), non-diminishing fear effect applied to the target. The mana cost has been increased so the spell is less efficient for purposes of DPS.
  • Pyroclasm ? Now gives a chance to stun when Rain of Fire, Hellfire and Soul Fire hit the target.
  • Damage over Time – in patch 1.8 we?ve lowered the duration of Corruption and Curse of Agony, increasing the damage per tick.
  • Bane Talent – will now reduce the casting time of Soul Fire and Immolation spells in addition to Shadow Bolt. The second improvement affects Intensity, which will now reduce the chance to be interrupted while casting Rain of Fire, Hellfire and Soul Fire spells.
  • Ruin – next patch we’ve also slightly reduced the critical damage bonus of Ruin. This change is very small and shouldn’t impact overall Warlock DPS to a noticeable degree.
  • End-Game Pets – overall creature power has increased for Doomguard and Infernal.  Changes scheduled for Patch 1.9
  • Soul shard bag –  The Shard Bag is pending programmer time, which is divided amongst many tasks and projects. The designers are pushing for its production, however. All that I do know at this point in time has been stated before – the bag will be able to hold more Soul Shards than the normal bags which are available, easing the burden of shard management.

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Warcraft III Bonus Map - Deadfall

For years the mages of Moonbrook have debated, “If a brave warrior falls in a forest with no one to hear it, then does it make a sound?” Download Deadfall a new Bonus map for Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne.

Wow-Europe:  5-days Credit by Morhaime

Wow-Europe gets a 5-days credit for latency and hardware issues during August 31-September 12.  Blizzard President Mike Morhaime expressed his apologies and shared with the fans all the technical issues the Blizzard Europe team went through.  A good precedent, where fans are openly explained the problems that caused the lag spike and login issues.  Fans expressed they wish this type of communication more often:

On September 12th we detected a dramatic increase in temperature at different data centers. We then brought down the servers to avoid any damage to the hardware. Our ISP quickly identified and rectified a failure in the air-conditioning system; however, before re-opening the servers, we brought our hardware manufacturer on-site to check for any damage.

Upcoming Instant Melee Attack Change

The mechanics of most instant melee attacks will be modified to improve item balance upon the release of patch version 1.8. Currently, instant melee attacks do damage based on the damage range of the weapon, plus a bonus for the player?s attack power. This bonus is then multiplied by the speed of the weapon. As a result, slow weapons do more damage than is intended, and fast weapons are considered inferior by most players. We are changing the way the attack power bonus is calculated for instant attacks. This change will NOT affect attack power calculations for normal melee attacks. Instead of multiplying by the speed of the weapon, the attack power bonus will be multiplied by a fixed number pulled from the following table:

Two-handed weapons: 3.3
Daggers: 1.7
All other one-handed weapons: 2.4

As a direct result of this, many weapons will shift position in their relative power. In particular, many epic (purple) quality items will now be more powerful than slower superior (blue) weapons. For the purpose of instant attacks, the Arcanite Reaper and the Barman Shanker will drop slightly in relative power, while Typhoon and Alcor?s Sunrazor will increase in power.

We expect to see the total damage output of a Mortal Strike warrior go down about 4% with the Arcanite Reaper, and up about 4% with Typhoon. We expect the total damage output of a Backstab rogue to go down about 2% with the Barman Shanker and up about 2% with Alcor?s Sunrazor.

This change was not made to reduce the power of instant attacks, but to correct the relative imbalance of weapon itemization. At a given level requirement, epic quality weapons should always be more powerful than superior quality weapons.

Please also note that all normal weapon swings will be completely unaffected by this change. The following abilities are affected by the design change: Sinister Strike, Ambush, Backstab, Whirlwind, Mortal Strike, and Overpower—Eyonix.

Druid Talent in Patch 1.8: Moonkin

Blizzard released a new preview for the new Druid Talent Tree to be released in the upcoming patch 1.8—where druids will now be able to shapeshift into a Moonkin, adding 3% spell crit to all the party as an aura.  For more details head to the Druid preview

Ladder Season Three Soon

Warcraft III has been updated in recent days with the 1.19 patch and many of the maps available for ladder play have received a fresh coat of polish. Blizzard invites you to their first in-depth look at Ladder Season III and the new ladder implementation.

Blizzard Original Song Contest

Blizzard announced their official BlizzCon Original Song Contest, sponsored by Creative Labs and FilePlanet! Blizzard is looking for some talented musicians to create an original song based on Diablo, Starcraft, or Warcraft. The five most-talented bards will receive a Soundblaster Platinum X-Fi Sound Card, a free year of World of Warcraft, and much more. Interested? Click the link below for more details:
http://www.blizzcon.com/song-contest-rules.shtml

Wow plague at Yahoo! Buzz

World of Warcraft gets buzz.yahoo-ed with a small article reporting the Zul’Gurub plague that has been expanding through Azeroth, and makes a joke that hopefully the monthly $15 players get a virtual healthl plan attached.

“News from gaming circles tells of a highly contagious disease spreading through the dungeons of Azeroth. It seems that World of Warcraft (aka WoW), a massively multiplayer online role playing game (otherwise known as an MMORPG), has its own version of the plague, and it’s got people buzzing. “

Penny-Arcade & GUComics at BlizzCon

Caydiem: “Blizzard invites you to come out and meet Tycho and Gabe, Scott, and Woody—the respective creators of Penny Arcade, PvP, and GUComics—as they discuss their experiences on their own BlizzCon panel. For a complete list of the panel topics that will be presented at BlizzCon, please visit the BlizzCon Q&A Panels page”: http://www.blizzcon.com/panel.shtml

XFire Version 1.45 Released!

Our peer-to-peer software partners, XFire updated now to version 1.45—XFire now includes a very highly requested feature Blocking usernames, more download sources, improved voice activation in voice chat, and much more. Read the Release Notes.  If you have XFire, just launch it and it will auto-update.  If you have never used XFire, and wish to give it a try download it.  You may chat with your friends and keep track of what game they are playing.  With a button click you can join their game server, and use voice chat.  You can toggle XFire Chat window within World of Warcraft without going to desktop.

Warcraft 3 Patch 1.19 Released!

The Warcraft universe continues to expand, as Blizzard announces the latest patch for Warcraft 3: Reign of Chaos and its expansion set: The Frozen Throne. Patch 1.19 contains new and updated maps, unit and item balance changes, and some new features in the World Editor! Simply connect to Battle.net to download the patch. For more information on this exciting new patch, please click here.

Updating Site News Atop

Please bear with us while we customize the news headlines—new feature of Blizzplanet.  Thanks to DarkNemesis—Chief Programmer.

Blizzplanet Update: The Titans Lore

Ever wanted to find out some lore about the Titans and the members of the Pantheon High Council?  We have added an article with the excerpt from Warcraft RPG: Shadow & Light describing the Titans Race and mentioning some background info of each Pantheon member. Enjoy the great read!  Browse our new Titans Lore Section

RP-PvP: Sunday Mass - Maelstrom Event

Meara—Community Manager of Blizzplanet/RP-PvP Forums has announced a server-wide event on Maelstrom RP-PvP Server:

“Sunday Mass – a ceremony of worship of the Holy Light, the faith shared by those of the human, dwarven, and high elven societies. Granted from the collected spirits of every sentient inhabiting the realm of Azeroth and empowered through the happiness a followerer envokes, the Holy Light is a philosophy of good and kind.

On Sunday, September 18th at 7PM CST/-6 GMT, the first Sunday Mass of the RP-PvP server, Maelstrom, will occur. Hosted by the chaplains of the Kul Tiras Marines, the ceremony will be conducted by Khor, Head Chaplain of the Marines.

Located within the halls of the Northshire Abbey, the event will take place at 7:00 PM Central (server time) and should last approximately one hour. Everyone within the Alliance faction is welcome to visit and enjoy some roleplay.

Light keep you…”

Richard A. Knaak Exclusive Q&A

We had a small Q&A with Richard A. Knaak concerning few details of War of the Ancients: The Sundering—which fans found confusing, from Hakkar the Soulflayer and Hakkar the Houndmaster to Ysera/Elune/Cenarius-relation topics.  We also have the release date for Warcraft: The Sunwell trilogy: Shadows of Ice and release date for Diablo: Moon of the Spider.  Read the Q&A interview

Blizzard: Wow Wanted Posters Contest

Blizzard is seeking talented artists to create Wanted posters for a very Cool Contest.  This contest is sponsored by The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and five winners will receive a fantastic prize package. Read more.

Prize Package includes:

  • 1 2GB iPod nano ($199)
  • 1 Apple iPod nano Lanyard Headphones
  • 1 Apple iPod nano Tubes
  • 2 iTunes Music Store Card $50

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FantasyFlightGames: Wow Board Game

Fantasy Flight Games announced the release of World of Warcraft: The Board Game.  You can read the rules and full details at the official homepage.

“Are you ready to explore the misty eaves of the Silverpine Forest, the hills of the Hinterlands, or the rotten corruption of the Plaguelands? Are you ready to set forth on a great adventure, building your skills and prowess while collecting equipment and artifacts of legend and power? Are you ready to set yourself against the overwhelming will of a great enemy such as Kel?Thuzad or the mighty Nefarian? Above all, are you ready to lead your faction to honor and dominance of Azeroth?  Voyage through Lordaeron, vanquish monsters, complete quests, and battle for the glory of the Horde! … or the honor of the Alliance.”

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Blizzplanet Update: Warcraft Timeline

We have added an excerpt from Warcraft RPG: Lands of Conflict—written by Chris Metzen—gathering the Warcraft Timeline since the Titans arrived to year 25 where World of Warcraft the MMORPG begins.  The Timeline format is somewhat different to the one in the Official Site. Summarized.  Check it out in our Warcraft Timeline section.

Wow 1.7 Hotfixes

A few hotfixes will be implemented by Blizzard today to address some issues with Zul’Gurub, Arathi Basin and Blackwing Lair.

Beginning at 4:00 AM PDT on 9/17 we will be issuing rolling restarts to all realms to apply a hotfix. We expect this to resolve several issues:

-Fixed an exploit with drakonids where players could get a head start.
-Nefarian’s drakonids have reduced damaging abilities
-The wild polymorph cast by Nefarius in Blackwing Lair, can no longer be canceled early by clicking it off.
-Arathi Basin holiday honor should now be awarding the bonus properly.
-Hakkar’s spell Corrupted Blood can no longer exist outside of Zul’Gurub

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