VUGames President talks about Wow

VUGames President Phil O’Neill claims that the business growth and recovery of Vivendi Universal, after the uncertainty in the past few years,  is due to the success of Blizzard and World of Warcraft.  Read more details at the following GamesIndustry.Biz Article

I think the results of that recovery are now really moving into what in ‘05 can be characterised as a growth year – and I would tell you that the real engine behind that growth is Blizzard Entertainment and World of Warcraft.

Well, two things. One is that I would politely disagree with your assessment – I’m not sure Blizzard is the jewel in the crown. I would suggest that it’s the crown. Blizzard is the crown; we have some nice rings and bracelets and other pieces of jewellery inherent in the company, but Blizzard, without a doubt, from a commercial standpoint and a creative standpoint, is the crown of Vivendi-Universal Games and from a go-forward standpoint, will clearly be the engine that drives Vivendi-Universal Games’ success.

Blackwing Lair Video

Chaknor —from Elite Chaos Guild—submitted a video of his adventures inside Blackwing Lair as a preview of things to face in this new dungeon.  Recommended for Fans who haven’t yet entered the dungeon.

“Elite Chaos invaded the long awaited Blackwing Lair on the patch day. What did we find? A whole slew of bugs to play around with. Despite running into seemingly impossible to overcome, encounter breaking bugs, we refused to succumb to them. After carefully analyzing the bugged boss fights, paying attention to every little detail, we were able to develop strategies to deal with the bugs. We then proceeded to defile the place, defeating Razorgore the Untamed and Vaelastrasz the Corrupt for the first time on Bleeding Hollow.” – Video submitted by Chaknor the Paladin President (Jonathan Witek)

Blizzard announced recently a hotfix

Watch the Video (Requires Windows Player 10 / WMV 60.9MB)

Blackwing Lair Hotfixed

Tigole has announced a temporary hotfix implemented on Blackwing Lair until a more permanent solution can be created for next patch:

I thought I’d take a few minutes to clarify some issues with Blackwing Lair.

First, in regards to the Vaelanstrasz the Corrupted encounter, the way that it currently works is that once you begin the encounter (click through his gossip, watch the scene play out and aggro him) you have 1 hour to make as many attempts on him as you like, but if you fail, he plays his script, despawns and you cannot progress. This has always been the design behind this encounter and is very much intended. We will, however, be making a change in the near future to the encounter that will allow you to get a 1 hour attempt on him per day. Currently, you get a 1 hour attempt per instance reset. I’ll offer an explanation although I’m not sure it will make much sense. When the encounter went live and an issue with the door arose, we found a way to hotfix it. A hotfix is a change that we can make immediately to live realms without patching customers or bringing the servers down. However, the hotfix we were able to apply made it so that Vaelanstrasz would only be available once per instance reset. Without understanding how these events are scripted, it’s difficult to see how the two are related but they are. We already have it changed internally so that players will get 1 hour per day (rather than reset) but this change cannot go live without patching our players and restarting the servers. Hopefully, this patch will go out soon. In the meantime, it will be considered “working as intended” that the dragon is available for 1 hour per reset.

Regarding the lag that some are experiencing in Blackwing Lair, our Live Operations team is aware of these issues and analyzing them. Hopefully, we can make some fixes soon to help alleviate the lag.

Jason Hayes interview on video

Jason Hayes—Blizzard Music Composer and creator of Warcraft 3 and World of Warcraft Music—was interviewed by Gametrailers.com, and you can watch him on a video talking about his music played by the Philharmonic Orchestra at the Hollywood Bowl last week.  The Video Games Live event was produced by Tommy Tallarico and Jack Wall from Mystical Stone Entertainment, LLC.  In the interview video you can listen to Elijah Wood, from Lord of the Rings; Stan Lee(Marvel Comics); Gary Coleman; Marty O’Donnel(Halo); Laura Karpman(Everquest II) and many others.  If you ever wanted to see Jason Hayes watch the video interview …

Warcraft III Bonus Map - Duststorm

These barren wastes hold nothing for the living, harboring only the bones of those who have fallen to the sun bleached land. The dusty earth thus serves as a savage battleground where armies can unleash their full might unhindered.

Download Duststorm a new Bonus map for Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne

World of Warcraft Cinematic Poster

The World of Warcraft Cinematics are captured in stunning, glossy stills on this 40” x 27” poster complete with signatures from the World of Warcraft dev team. Order this poster exclusively at Blizzard Store.

Blizzplanet Store: Warcraft RPG Books

Blizzplanet opens a store with discounts on PDF electronic Warcraft RPG Books. You can download the books into your computer and pay either with credit card or Paypal. The Warcraft RPG Books available in PDF are:
  • WarCraft: Lands of Conflict
  • World of Warcraft the Roleplaying Game
  • Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game
  • Warcraft: Manual of Monsters
  • Warcraft: Shadows & Light
  • WarCraft: Alliance & Horde
  • WarCraft: Magic & Mayhem

Patch 1.60 Released!

Today, Tuesday during the Server Maintenance, Blizzard will release patch 1.60 and we will be able to play Blackwing Lair.  Warriors and Warlocks will have to reset their talent points.  Read the patch notes here

BlizzCon? Gaming Festival Web Site

Blizzard today unveiled the BlizzCon? Web site, presenting many new details about the upcoming gaming convention. Set to take place on October 28 and 29 at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, California, BlizzCon is open to gamers of all ages.

Tickets will go on sale at a special BlizzCon ticketing Web site at 8:00 am PDT on July 21, 2005. 4,400 tickets will be made available at $120 per ticket, with a limit of four (4) tickets per customer. Highlights of BlizzCon include:

  • Q&A panels with the World of Warcraft and StarCraft: Ghost developers

  • Playing World of Warcraft Battlegrounds live with friends
  • 1st public hands-on gameplay of Blizzard’s StarCraft: Ghost, Blizzard’s highly anticipated tactical-action console title
  • BlizzCon Invitational Tournament, featuring top Warcraft III and StarCraft professional gamers from around the world
  • Contests for die-hard gamers to compete in for great loot
  • Custom BlizzCon merchandise in the BlizzCon store
  • A special closing-night concert featuring a to-be-announced band

Please see the BlizzCon Web site for further details on the event, including hotel and travel information, an extensive FAQ, and more.

Diablo: Greatest Game of All Time

Diablo was chosen by Gamespot as the Greatest Game of All Time with a review of how Diablo has influenced other games:
Gamespot: The game birthed the action-RPG genre as we know it, spawning dozens of copycats on the PC in the years following its release. Consoles even began to get into the act with Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance, which was very heavily influenced by Diablo. To this day, Diablo is used as a point of comparison for any game that involves simple point-and-click combat, character development, hordes of monsters, massive levels, and collectible loot and equipment.

Argent Dawn New Recipes

Although we are still working on the subdomains, we wanted to show you a preview of Argent Dawn Recipes to be available in Patch 1.60.  If you haven’t been able to copy your character upon the Public Test Servers, then you can view the recipes for Honored and Revered Players at the following Page.  Make sure to click the links of the recipes to browse through the images.

Upcoming Patch 1.60 Changes

Tigole revealed that Maraudon Orange zone will be hotfixed soon or will be fixed for Patch 1.60.  The Larva spewer should be interactive allowing players to destroy the spewer to stop the spawning of Larvas.  This is not the case, and the bug is affecting gameplay to all players:

Tigole:
I checked this out today. The Larva Spewer should be interactable so that players can turn off the spawned Larva. This is not currently working on the live servers. We identified and fixed the bug today internally. Hopefully we can hotfix this in the next few days or fix it for patch 1.6.0 which is just around the corner.

Apologies for inconvenience.

Another change to be included in Patch 1.60 is the availability of Blood of Innocents at the beginning area of Scholomance.  This is going to be a great change for those who need Kirtonos:

Tigole:
There is a change coming in Patch 1.6.0 (live on the test server right now).  There will be a mob in the first room in Scholomance who drops the Blood and allows you to summon Kirtonos.  Kirtonos will be the first named NPC you encounter now.

Gnome Wallpaper

Gnomes got some love this week with their own Wallpaper revealing the Shield theme for the Gnomish Kingdom.  Download it here

AhQuiraj on Patch 1.90

Tigole was kind to set a time-frame for both Ahquiraj and Zulgurub.

Tigole:
Zul’Gurub will be in content Patch 1.7.0.

Ahn’Qiraj is a *massive* zone with both interior and exterior elements. It will be instanced.

The zone will most likely go live in Patch 1.9.0 although things are always subject to change.

We’ll provide more information on this zone as it gets closer to release

Server Upgrade

Our apologies for the downtime through last couple of days.  Our server was upgraded to keep optimal conditions.  Note that whenever PHP, MySQL or Apache release new updates, the server is upgraded.  Thanks for your patience.

Engineers’ Explosive Extravaganza!

Another Real-life holiday has been included within World of Warcraft, celebrating the Independence Day on July 4th.  Although the Goblins are far from celebrating any independence day, the Goblins are out to go Kaboom-palooza!

Deep within the cavernous halls of Undermine, goblins labor and toil over their strange and fanciful engineering creations. When they are not constructing powerful devices of destruction, they find making fireworks a diverting pasttime. They work tirelessly over strange chemical concoctions used to produce precisely the right color and, of course, spectacular explosion. It is an artform that comes naturally to those who find great pleasure in making things explode in a variety of ways. Competition is fierce among the engineers as they strive for perfection within their pyrotechnics.

Since holding an exhibition indoors—particularly within range of a goblin engineer’s workshop—is completely out of the question, it was decided by the Tinker’s Union that a day would be chosen wherein the pyrotechnists would go out into the world and share their creations with the world (for a modest fee, of course). For one glorious day, the sky would be alight with the fantastic creations of engineers throughout Azeroth.

Whether Alliance or Horde, these pyrotechnists are more than happy to help you set the sky on fire during the Engineers’ Explosive Extravaganza! (Just remember, point all incendiaries away from the face.)

Hellgate: London Article at CVG

Computer and Video Games has an article about Hellgate: London and few screenshots describing the storyline and the weaponry.

Black Lotus will be BOE on patch 1.70

According to Eyonix, Black Lotus will be finally made Bind on Equipped in Patch 1.70—the next future patch after Blackwing Lair is released, which means Black Lotus will be now available on Auction House for profit.  It will allow Alchemists to make more Flasks.  If only the Scholomance Lab requirement was removed, sighs!

Eyonix While I’m not sure of the original reasoning behind the Black Lotus herb being made bind-on-pickup, I do know that this is going to be changed for patch 1.7, which is the patch scheduled to release sometime after the next content patch. If your desire is to sell them for profit, feel free to hang onto them until that time.

Source: Official Forums