World of Warcraft: Arthas - Update

Christie Golden shared recently a bit more info about the upcoming Blizzard novel from Pocket Star Books titled … WORLD OF WARCRAFT: ARTHAS. Due April 2009.

Blizzplanet: What can you tell us about Wow: Arthas? How far back in the timeline will you write about Arthas? He is been portrayed as a child in Day of the Dragon, later one of the judges on Tirion’s trial (Of Blood and Honor), and I recall reading him still a child in WoW: Beyond the Dark Portal when Muradin arrived to talk to Terenas.

Christie Golden: We actually start with Arthas as a ten year old. smile That is one of the things I really love best about this. While it was certainly fun and challenging to depict the famous scenes from the game we all know and love, I loved having the chance to show Arthas as a child and youth before things started going so bad for him. We’ll see his take on some famous scenes, meet some new characters, and my favorite part, get to watch his romance with Jaina unfold.

One fun bit–the scene in Beyond the Dark Portal, where he’s practicing swordplay and Muradin comes across him, was one that I had written. You’ll see the same scene here–from Arthas’s point of view. smile

What makes Arthas so fascinating to me is that, in my opinion in a better time, he would have done just fine as a king and ruler. But he didn’t have the right stuff as it were to handle what he needed too. He was flawed, and under pressure, he cracked. And that, my friends, is meat and drink to a writer. I do hope people will enjoy it!

Wrath of the Lich King Beta 8982 - Lore Fans: Alexstrasza New Model

New Beta patch build 8982 was released. Beta realms are online.  The first shock I got when returning to Wrathgate was to find out something lorefans will love to hear about after watching the videos a few days ago. Queen Alexstrasza has gotten her very unique dragon model. No longer looks generic dragon.

Note: If you don’t wish to see the Wrathgate in-game cinematic (Major Spoiler) turn off the video when I open Alexstrasza’s Quest window. The in-game cinematic is triggered after clicking: “Alexstrasza, what happened here?”.

Wrath of the Lich King Beta Patch

Those of you who are planning to play beta should be aware to start downloading the beta patch. Tigole briefly collected some features to look forward in this new beta patch. It’s incomplete. More details soon. Remember to delete your WTF folder and Cache folder before launching the beta client. It will benefit you to do so to avoid lag and crashes.

I don’t have patch notes. Off the top of my head:

  • Heroics have all been re-tuned. We’d really like feedback on the Heroics this push.
  • 25 person raids have been re-tuned
  • Some tuning changes to 10 person raids
  • Many class changes. You won’t like the ones made to your own class but you’ll think the changes made to the 9 other classes are all overpowered.
  • More Icecrown quests and polish. We’d LOVE more Icecrown quest feedback. Please use the in-game feedback UI or post in the quest forums.
  • More Dalaran polish
  • Performance updates and new performance logging to help get the servers in good condition.
  • We’re working on getting a beta Glyph vendor in the build so you guys will have quick and easy access to all of the glyphs for feedback. That system *might* make this push.

I’m not the patch note guy but that’s my version of the patch notes.

BlizzCon Live Stream !!!

WoW Radio, (https://www.wcradio.com) was able to broadcast from Blizzcon in 2005 and 2007, this year, Blizzcon 2008 falls on WoW Radio’s 4 year anniversary (October 11th) and we plan on celebrating it with style by providing our most complete, live Blizzcon coverage yet. WoW Radio will be broadcasting all of the announcements and panels live via shoutcast audio, free of charge. Our site will feature an interactive schedule with multiple streams being broadcast simultaneously, allowing listeners to tune into any particular event they wish to listen to.

After each panel, announcement and scheduled event has finished, the broadcast will be uploaded as a podcast, and be made available via the site and our RSS feeds. Clicking on an event that has already happened, will direct you straight to the podcast for that event, allowing listeners to download or stream it from our website, whenever they wish. In addition to this coverage, we will be providing live shows, interviews and commentary throughout the day from our convention studio in Anaheim. WoW Radio hosts will be manning the stream all day, providing the World of Warcraft community with up to the minute topical discussion, debate and commentary on the information revealed at Blizzcon, as it happens. Exclusive interviews will also be happening throughout the day with such personalities as the cast of The Guild, as well as members of Blizzard entertainment, prominent machinimators, guilds and community members.

All of these interviews will be provided in both audio and video-format for high definition download and streaming. In addition, we will be inviting special guests such as the crew from WoW Insider and World of Warcast to join us on air in a celebration of WoW podcasting. We cordially invite any World of Warcraft podcasters who are attending the convention to contact the station and come and join us for our live shows.

If you would like to know more we have prepared this short podcast, detailing our plans for the event here.

We at WoW Radio would like to welcome the World of Warcraft community to join us in our Blizzcon IRC channels. Our staff will be on-hand to provide any technical assistance and field any questions you might have, so feel free to join either #blizzcon08 on irc.quakenet.org or #wowradio on irc.mmoirc.com. Those who do not have an IRC client, can use our on-site java application, by clicking on the chat link at the top of our page.

Since the coverage will be live and low-latency, we expect listeners to be the first to hear the announcements, so come and join the rest of the community and share in the excitement. Thank you for taking the time to read this, and we look forward to broadcasting to you guys at Blizzcon in October.

The Battle For The Undercity - Alliance Version Videos

The Four Videos of The Battle For The Undercity (Alliance Version) are now available. I finished all the quests through a pre-made level 80 character on Murmur Server. The server is a bit unstable, and the alliance version is still bugged in beta. Quiet normal. The first mini-boss: a worm, sometimes despawns and the event ends abruptly. If that happens, simply abandon the quest and return to Broll outside Undercity, until Varian respawns at the portal point.

Some screenshots, and transcripts will be up later on. Got my hands full. For now you got the four videos and 23 screenshots of Varian Wrynn (King of Stormwind). His model was redone to look more like Varian / Lo’gosh in the DC Comics. Check out the new updates here.

Fake Blizzard Email Alert

Be very alert about this and other emails that seem to come from Blizzard. They aren’t.  Common sense, place your mouse over the links in the email and make sure they point to Blizzard.com or WorldofWarcraft.com before clicking them. Their aim is to steal your username/password.  One of the emails point to a website hosted at freehostia, and the other one links to a guild website. Both with a fake WoW account page. This is the fake email in question:

Greetings,

An investigation of your World of Warcraft account has found strong evidence that the account in question is being sold or traded. As you may not be aware of, this conflicts with Blizzard’s EULA under section 4 Paragraph B which can be found here: WoW -> Legal -> End User License Agreement
and Section 8 of the Terms of Use found here:
WoW -> Legal -> Terms of Use

The investigation will be continued by Blizzard administration to determine the action to be taken against your account. If your account is found violating the EULA and Terms of Use, your account can, and will be suspended/closed/or terminated.
In order to keep this from occurring, you should immediately verify that you are the original owner of the account.

To verify your identity please visit the following webpage:
https://www.wow-europe.com/login/login?service=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.wow-europe.com%2Faccount%2F
Only Account Administration will be able to assist with account retrieval issues. Thank you for your time and attention to this matter, and your continued interest in World of Warcraft.

Sincerely,

Account Administration
Blizzard Entertainment

UPDATE: Starcraft: I, Mengsk & WoW: Night of the Dragon

New updates for upcoming Blizzard novel from Pocket Star Books. The brief description of StarCraft: I, Mengsk is now available. You can read it at our Starcraft Pocketbook Excerpts section.

The World of Warcraft: Night of the Dragon brief description is also available. This is the backstory to the events leading to the Magic War against Malygos in World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King. You may find the description at our Warcraft Pocketbook Excerpts section.

Blizzplanet - Brewfest WoW Stein Contest

A second contest here at Blizzplanet, courtesy of 3Point Entertainment and Blizzard Entertainment. Another chance to win one of four World of Warcraft Steins. (Only US residents may participate)

1. Simply play the Brewfest Quests in World of Warcraft and submit an original screenshot of your in-game character holding a Brewfest Stein at your local Brewfest Festival. (close-up preferable, .JPG format – 1024×768 72dpi)

2. A second screenshot of your character holding the stein at the bar in the Blackrock Depths Bar.

3. Type your Character name and server in the email.

4. Specify which Stein you would want if you won: Alliance or Horde.

5. Email both submissions here.

This contest ends on November 11th at 11:59pm EST/-5GMT. Only one submission per household. Don’t play World of Warcraft? No problem, you can still participate on our WoW Stein Photo Contest by sending a photo of yourself and friends at a bar—read more.

PlanetDiablo - Diablo III Monsters Breakdown

Acolyte from PlanetDiablo sends heads up about their breakdown on 21 monsters that have already been revealed in Diablo III media. This can be informative to some fans who have missed some of the interviews or media.

Standard Monster Classes
Below you will find a listing of all known monster classes in the game, progressively growing as more information is released, explaining features that offer distinction to other enemies.

Each monster class has a set of types within it, the Dark Cultist class containing types such as the Dark Summoner and Dark Vessel. These different types have distinct statistics in terms of hit points, resistance levels, and special abilities. Additionally, each type is generally found in distinct areas of the game, later varieties naturally becoming better equipped to take down your hero or heroine.

As one might expect, Diablo III comes loaded with a large variety of demonic, undead, and animal-based foes serving the desires of evil. A number of these monster classes return from previous games in the series, while others act as spiritual successors; the Gnarled Walkers are an excellent example following in the root-steps of Thorned Hulks. Of course, the game is host to many new monsters like the Dune Thresher.

Share your comments with other Diablofans.

Dalaran Sewer & Orgrimmar Arena - Wrath of the Lich King

It’s been a tough 48 hours working on new Wrath of the Lich King content. I have been giving you heads up on what I am doing allowing you to keep tabs to check out the Sons of Hodir reputation loot and the awesome Battle for the Undercity videos/transcript.

Next I will be working on is the videos of the new Arenas. The ones the developers talked about at Blizzard WWI Paris. As of beta build 8970, released two nights ago, Dalaran Sewer arena and Orgrimmar arena were opened, and beta testers are checking them out.

I am horrible at PvP, so mind you. Just focus on what is happening in the surroundings and the line of sight mechanics you can use strategically to your advantage, rather than on my noob skills. Fair? Alright, watch out for the videos below.

The Battle For Undercity Videos Update

I experienced the Battle of the Undercity after posting the transcript from a fan’s screenshot.  This time I took my own screenshots and tried not to miss any of the spoken text.  Better yet! I got an hour worth of video for you guys. I edited and split these videos into 10 minute chunks. This is epic in large proportions.  The only setback is that you barely get any damage or risk to die. Once Thrall and Sylvanas start the battle in Undercity, you get two buffs. One from Thrall and the song of Sylvanas. You get crazy agility and about three times your health total. (43,000 health in my case) and replenish health quicker than the damage you get.

Varimathras’ forces are at the Lordaeron Ruins courtyard spreading blight that causes 1,200 damage per tick while you stand on it. Thrall commands the wind to cleanse his path. Tornados can be seen removing the blight.

For around 10 minutes all you do is fight over twenty mobs at a time, and nonstop waves of Apothecaries, and Abominations on the courtyard of Undercity until you kill the first boss: A Plague Spreader like the big Frankestein boss in Naxxramas.

That cleared, Thrall and Sylvanas lead you through the Throne room, and find out the elevators have been blown. At the bottom of the elevator tunnel are spikes heralding death to any who jumps. Thrall commands the wind and you slowly fall to safety.

In the inner sanctum hordes of Burning Legion siege you: Wrathbringers, Doomguards, Dreadlords and four-arm demoness until you reach the Royal Quarter of Undercity where you face Pitlords and all kind of Legion to kill Varimathras. Unbelievably, this is not a dungeon instance. It is phase-technology in action sharing the same space with the real Undercity.

This is the first video showing some of the Wrathgate happenings, and the arrival of Jaina Produmoore to Grommash Hold in Orgrimmar announcing the Fourth War is about to start. Varian Wrynn is pissed for the death of Bolvar Fordragon.

All videos and transcript are finished so go check out Battle for the Undercity and tell all your friends and forum buddies.  This is video# 1 out of six.

Dun Nifflelem - Sons of Hodir Quartermaster

Blizzplanet has added the Sons of Hodir Reputation Quartermaster items obtained at Honored and Revered.  The Sons of Hodir may be found on the eastern area of Storm Peaks by the Dun Niffelem.  This faction is with the Frost Giants of Storm Peaks for which you do at least three daily quests at 250 reputation per quest. Some weapons, shoulder enchants, and other gear can be obtained.  The most expensive item is the Mammoth mount which costs 9,999 gold.

Wrath of the Lich King - Battle For Undercity Spoilers

I have gathered some data from the community concerning the quests after the Icecrown Wrath Gates are opened.  This is a preview. I will keep working on this during the next weeks as I experience this myself and gather data that is missing. Be warned that this is a major spoiler.  If you are hesitant of purchasing the Wrath of the Lich King expansion, this spoiler might really ignite interest in you in hopping in into the expansion for some very cool questlines involving Thrall, Sylvanas, Bolvar Fordragon, Lady Jaina Proudmoore, and King Varian Wrynn.

SPOILERS

Varimathras betrays the Horde. Bolvar Fordragon dies at the Wrath Gate. Varimathras and some Apothecaries coup and dethrone Lady Sylvanas nigh killing her.  She and surviving Forsaken refugees reach Orgrimmar.  Varimathras reigns Undercity. Lady Jaina seeks council with Thrall in Orgrimmar. Lady Sylvanas and Thrall teleport to Undercity where you must help them retake Undercity. Blizzard uses the new phase-technology which shares the same space as the normal Undercity, just when you get there the NPCs are phased out, and all you see is corpses, and environment changes. You fight Varimathras and his forces in the Undercity Royal Quarter. When you defeat Varimathras, things get even more interesting … King Varian Wrynn and many Knights gallop into the Royal Quarter to face Thrall and Sylvanas. Read the partial transcript.  I will add it to the Wrath of the Lich King Story Arcs section (left menu).

Diablo 3 Item Grace Period & Alt Key

Bashiok shared a bit of info about the visuals and mechanics behind looting items. It is a change from the norm in Diablo II.  You will still need to press down the Alt key to see all loot within the screen, but loot title will be displayed the moment it drops and fade after five seconds. If find this quiet helpful. Sometimes in Diablo II, something would drop, and you wouldn’t notice. Specially when using AOE spells that kill mobs far away, while you are still killing mobs closer to you.  It is easy to miss something that drops unless you hit the alt key.

Visually alerting you of items that drop anywhere onscreen, is a very welcome feature.

The way it works now is that when an item drops the name shows for about 5 seconds and then they fade out and disappear. Pressing Alt shows all dropped item names for again about 5 seconds and then the names fade out and disappear.

I actually didn’t like it at first, I liked the on/off state of pressing or not pressing Alt, but with the names showing immediately after drop and having a sort of “grace period” after just tapping Alt, it’s really grown on me and is a lot more intuitive. It’s a lot easier to see what just dropped quickly and decide if you care, and it isn’t necessary to constantly hold down Alt while scavenging after a large fight.

I still want to see -nopickup return but I haven’t really asked anyone what the possibility of that is. I don’t think it would work well with the current system, so options may have to be a possibility.

—source: Battle.net

Share your comments with other Diablofans.

Thanks, Lyquid

Starcraft 2 - AusGamers Interviews Frank Pearce

Gunnar informs AusGamers interviewed Frank Pearce (Blizzard co-founder) to talk about Battle.net 2.0 and eSports. A new bit of info came up in this interview. A Battle.net 2.0 feature is aimed to be like MySpace. By the sounds of that, community interaction and socialization experience will be increased a few notches.

You can watch the video here.

Blizzplanet - Wrath of the Lich King - Inscription Glyphs

Last week, I showed a glimpse (about 40%) of the Inscription Glyphs per Class. I have finished adding all of the 193 glyphs available as of beta patch 8826. Warrior and Death Knight glyphs haven’t been added into beta yet. Each class seems to have between 20-22 Major Glyphs. Minor Glyphs haven’t been added to beta either.

Take a look at all the Glyphs shown thus far in beta by clicking on your class.

Sarah McKerrigan Nominated by New Covey Trailer Awards

Not a StarCraft related news, but I love to do follow ups on Glynnis’ careers: both voice acting and book writing. She is the voice of Kerrigan the Queen of Blades in Starcraft II. On her role as a writer, Glynnis Talken-Campbell, under her book writer pseudonym Sarah McKerrigan, recently announced DANGER KISS (a medieval romance novel). Her DANGER KISS trailer has been nominated as a finalist in the New Covey Trailer Awards contest.

  • Watch the nominated trailer, and Vote (Voting is in the dark box in the upper left. You must disable Firefox noscript addon in order to see it.)

Title: Danger’s Kiss
Author: Sarah McKerrigan
Trailer Producer: Richard Campbell
Genre: Historical Romance

Links
https://www.sarahmckerrigan.com
https://www.accessbackstage.com

Description
Danger’s Kiss is sort of a Sheriff of Nottingham meets The Artful Dodger adventure in which Nicholas Grimshaw, upstanding officer of the law, living happily alone in his thatched cottage, makes the mistake of taking mercy upon a beautiful scam artist by the name of Desiree and, instead of hanging her for her thievery, indentures her as his servant.

Sleight of hand and sleight of heart ensue as the two clash over what’s right versus what’s just, and moral lines become blurred as lawman and outlaw fall recklessly in love.

StarCraft II Discussion Topic: Zerg Creep

Starcraft II Community Manager Karune seeks fan feedback concerning Zerg Creep. Read below the details surrounding the latest new changes for the Zerg, and post your feedback at the following Battle.net forum.

Discussion Topic: Zerg Creep

One of the distinct features of the Zerg is their fast movement, quick reactions and their large numbers. With the newest changes to the StarCraft II build these attributes are bound to reinforced once more.

Here are a couple of changes to the Zerg:

  • Zerg units except Drones can now move 30% faster on creep
  • Creep Tumors are smaller and burrowed

These changes will have a big impact on Zerg strategy, since covering terrain with Creep will now be very important. We will see Overlord rushes with mass spewing of creep and Zerg fast micro on creep. The burrowed Creep Tumors will force the other races to get quick detection to push back the Zerg Creep and take their fast movement.

If you have a StarCraft II fan site and would like to participate, please email me at [email protected]

Questions for Fans:

  • What do you think of the speed increase on Creep?
  • How do you think this change will effect Zerg, Protoss and Terran?
  • Do you like or dislike the change? Why?

Each StarCraft II fansite will be featuring different types of questions, so be sure to also visit those sites. All of this feedback will be compiled and sent to the dev team.

Please structure feedback as follows:

——-
(question you’d like to answer)
(your answer)

(question you’d like to answer)
(your answer)
——-

Were looking forward to seeing great discussions on the Zerg Creep.

Diablo 3 Havok Physics

Bashiok shared some details straing from Lead Tech Artist Julian about what they are doing with the Havok Physics engine. This is a clear sign that Blizzard is listening to fan feedback this early in the Diablo III development. Big kudos to Bashiok and Julian.

Bashiok: Our lead tech artist Julian and I talked a bit yesterday about some of the effects and fading, and he gave me some more insight as to how they’re working and being changed. We also went in to some of the questions you’ve all brought up, and so I’ll hit some specific points too (with quotes!).

Fan: “…or just disconnecting corpses from the physics engine when they come to rest, and have them fade out”

Bashiok: Aside from my previous comment of this not being nearly as fun (it would also look/feel kind of lame), Havok already knows when an object has come to rest and so they already have a lower cost when they’re still. Additionally with the proposed method there is no reliable way to determine when or even if a body will come to rest. In a single player game with a class that maybe doesn’t use a ton of skills that interact with corpses in a significant way this could work, but in a multiplayer game there could potentially be hundreds of corpses piling up as they’ve never come to rest due to all of the player skills firing off.

We’re also taking extra care to minimize the ability of a player to impact the performance of another player, as was sometimes maliciously done in Diablo II.

Fan: I am wondering why you just use an object’s age and don’t specify a complexity and priority attribute for each object. By combining these two with the age method you would be able to fade out highly complex physics and low priority (tiny) objects earlier.

Bashiok: I’m just going to quote Julian from an e-mail at this point so I’m not rewriting his words and acting like I know what I’m talking about here – “Because most objects in the game that use the age method aren’t different enough in anatomical complexity for this to yield significant benefits. The size of objects generally isn’t a factor. It is the number of unseen physics meshes that the technical artists add to these things that matters and they tend to be pretty similar from actor to actor. This is largely due to the anatomical similarity of living things in nature…”

Most things have appendages, a back bone, head, etc.

Julian also made the point that while we have our new system for determining the number and age of a physics actors, we still have the old tried and true “disappear after n seconds” method. We can actually choose which actors use which system, so our intent is to make sure that a destroyed table won’t make a corpse disappear, for instance. The corpse probably being the more important of the two to keep around.

Quite a few of you were discussing options, sliders, ways to control how long something takes to disappear, etc. and that may be a possibility. The current setting, which is around 20, is just our initial implementation. There’s always the possibility for that number to change, or for it to potentially be variable by the player. We do want to keep the game options uncluttered and consistent as much as possible though.—Source: Battle.net

Share your comments with other Diablofans.

Thanks, Djinn_690

Blizzard Authenticator On Sale

The Blizzard Authenticator is now on stock and available for purchase at the small price of $6.50—that’s a good solution to protect your World of Warcraft account from theft. If you are not sure the websites you visit are reliable, or fear you may have gotten a keylogger and your account will be vandalized and your gear and gold stolen, the authenticator is a high-level security to keep your account and WoW characters shielded and protected.

Blizzplanet will soon be giving three of these Blizzard Authenticators to fans courtesy of Blizzard Entertainment. Stay tuned for the contest announcement.

This authenticator was available at the Blizzard WWI in Paris. Now it is available on the Blizzard Store. The big plus? Many countries now have access to purchasing one of these, including Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, New Zealand, Paraguay, Peru, Singapore, and Uruguay.

BLIZZARD AUTHENTICATOR

We’ve just received a new shipment of the Blizzard Authenticator, and they are once again available for purchase in the Blizzard Store. The Blizzard Authenticator is a keychain device that can be linked to a World of Warcraft account to add an extra layer of security; on demand, it generates a one-use alphanumeric code that is required when logging in to the account. For more information on the Blizzard Authenticator, check out the FAQ.

DETAILS

Blizzard Authenticator for use with your World of Warcraft account.

Protect your World of Warcraft account with industry leading account security – introducing the Blizzard Authenticator! The Blizzard Authenticator is designed as a supplemental authentication method for your World of Warcraft account, giving you the security of Two-Factor authentication. Each time you log in using the Blizzard Authenticator you are provided with a unique, one-time use password to use in addition to your regular password. Log in with both and you can rest easy knowing that your account is now even more secure from malicious attacks such as keyloggers and trojans.

  • Simple and easy to use – press one button to display the digital code. Setup of the token is simple and takes only a few minutes.
  • Small and convenient – take your token to wherever you play World of Warcraft and know that your account is secure.
  • Tough and durable – lasts for years and replacement is easy.
  • Provides for the highest account security available in the game industry today.

Once you have purchased the Blizzard Authenticator you can login to World of Warcraft Account Management to associate the token to your account.

This listing can only be used to ship the Blizzard Authenticator to destinations within the United States. If you are a resident of Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, New Zealand, Paraguay, Peru, Singapore, or Uruguay, please click here for ordering information. Players from Europe or Korea can purchase Blizzard Authenticators from the European and Korean Blizzard Stores.

Warcry Interviews Ben Boos

Warcry got a three-pages interview with Ben Boos, ex-Blizzard North artist. He drew some early sketches of Diablo III before departing. It is interesting to those who seek a job opportunity with Blizzard. He reveals he met Max Schaefer at the Blizzard North booth in the Game Developer’s Convention. All it takes is to approach someone from Blizzard with the best of your work. Doors can open. Make sure to bring your work and a resume at BlizzCon on October 10th. From the interview we learn that Michio Okamura was the creator of the original character design of Diablo. Ben Boos published a book full of sword illustrations. Make sure to check it out at your favorite bookstore.

WC: Could you please introduce yourself for the WarCry community?

Ben: Greetings! My name is Ben Boos. I’m an author and illustrator with a past in game development. I spent nearly 8 years in the trenches at Blizzard North during a fabulous time of that company’s history. Then I took the adventure a step further: I leaped and pursued a crazy dream.

For the last several years I’ve been pouring my heart into the crafting of a book that I hope gamers will like. It’s called SWORDS: An Artist’s Devotion, published by Candlewick Press. My crazy dream has now come true; thoughts have turned into things, and now the book has released! I can’t tell you what I’m going through. WooooHooo! It’s a very scary, exciting time. So hello everyone! Sorry I’m freaking out; it’s awesome to be here!

World of Warcraft: Arthas On April 2009

The Pocket Star book titled World of Warcraft: Arthas (by Christie Golden) is shipping on April 2009. You will get a postcard of its cover at BlizzCon 2008 on October 10th in the swag bag. TWILIGHT, The third and last part of the Starcraft: The Dark Templar trilogy, has been pushed to May 2009.

Let’s address ARTHAS first.  Unless something changes, it is indeed a hardback coming out in April of 2009.  While unfortunately there are no plans to put a sample chapter in the goodie bag for Blizzcon, do look for a postcard of the incredible cover.  I met with some folks at Blizzard to discuss the upcoming trilogy, and they showed me the art.  Like everything Blizzard does, this one is fantastic!  More on my trip in a separate post. smile

As for TWILIGHT, the third and final book in the Dark Templar trilogy set in the StarCraft universe, current plans are for that to come out in May of 2009.  The reason for the delay is…well, we can blame that fallen paladin for this too!  Yes, I was hard at work on ARTHAS and so the projects got swapped around a bit.  I am currently on my final edit for TWILIGHT and it’s fun to revisit this series.  I really loved Jake and R.M., and enjoyed the “voice” in which the story is told.  I like to describe the series as Bladerunner meets Indiana Jones.  I’m quite proud of it and I hope you all go out and pick up FIRSTBORN and jump right in, knowing that the third book is indeed on its way!

Source: Christie Golden’s Blog.

Diablo III Expansions ? VideoGamer Interview

Jay Wilson has been quiet popular lately with dozens of Diablo III Interviews. VideoGamer got him this time to talk about the classes.  Everyone knows new classes will be revealed at BlizzCon 2008 on October 10th, but Jay acknowledges fans will hate Blizzard for one class that resembles an old one. Some fans have always an excuse to hate something without even getting to see the full scope anyways.

On other note, he promises that in future expansions they will consider bringing back some of the old classes. Wait … did you hear that? … Diablo III expansions? in plural? I wouldn’t discard that possibility.

Who wouldn’t want two or more expansions for Diablo III?

VideoGamer.com: Have you copped a lot of flack over this?

JW: Yeah and we will! All the barbarian players are delighted and all the necromancers hate us. I understand, I don’t begrudge them that. I would hate me too! But what I would say is that when we announce the next class, which is quite similar to a previous class, then all those players will hate us too. You can’t make everybody happy, but I think when the game finally come out players will find there’s a good class for them, one they will love as much as the ones that came before. And if they don’t, I absolutely promise that in the expansions we’ll consider bringing back old classes. We just don’t want to do it with the first release. We want to establish our identity.

Source: VideoGamer

World of Warcraft: Ashbringer # 4

DC Comics has released solicitations for World of Warcraft: Ashbringer # 4 wrapping up the limited series. Issue# 1 is already on sale. Issue # 4 is coming out on December 31.  This awesome limited series gives extensive lore details of the origin of the Ashbringer and wraps up with Darion Mograine (son of Alexandros) raiding Light’s Hope Chapel and ultimately the Necropolis. This is a Wrath of the Lich King expansion tie-in. Issue# 4 delves into the events that transpire during the Death Knight class quests. I know because I have played it in beta.

On another note, the World of Warcraft Vol. 1 Hardcover that I reviewed a few days ago, has reached # 7 in the global quantity rank list and # 11 in global retail rank by the TOP 100 GRAPHIC NOVELS (Based on Actual Unit Sales of Products Invoiced in August 2008).

That’s surprising considering the World of Warcraft Vol. 1 Hardcover (Graphic Novel) beat the following in sales:
X-MEN TP VOL 03 COMPLETE ONSLAUGHT EPIC
WOLVERINE TP GET MYSTIQUE
X-MEN TP DIVIDED WE STAND
X-MEN LEGACY PREM HC VOL 01 DIVIDED HE STANDS
NEW X-MEN BY MORRISON ULTIMATE COLL TP BOOK 02.

Tokyopop’s Warcraft Legends made a rank # 26 Quantity Rank/ 63 Retail rank. Starcraft: Frontline figured a # 57 Quantity Rank and # 100 Retail rank. (Source: Newsarama)

Cast of The Guild Live at BlizzCon

ZOMG! I am gonna meet one of my real-life actress crushes: Felicia Day … coughs, ahem … as I was saying, Blizzard just announced The Guild cast will be at BlizzCon 2008 in Anaheim, CA. Now I just need to meet Alyssa Milano and Jessica Alba (rolls eyes). Checks list.

The cast of the popular web series The Guild will be making a live appearance at this year’s BlizzCon, participating in a discussion panel and chatting with attendees about all aspects of the show. They’ll also be giving folks a first-ever sneak preview of their upcoming second season.

The Guild is an independent web-based sitcom that depicts the real-life adventures of a group of online gamers. It’s written for gamers, about gamers, and by a gamer, and has won several prestigious awards for Best Web Series. If you’re not yet familiar with The Guild—or just want to get to know its members better—head over to www.watchtheguild.com to catch all 10 episodes of Season 1 right now.

Blizzard Debunks Diablo III Release before Starcraft 2 Rumor

Blizzard Public Relations got a response to the recent rumors that Diablo III would ship before Starcraft 2. The rumor was widespread last week to be a “leak” from a anonymous Blizzard employee. I squashed the rumor by linking to the Ten Ton Hammer interview with Jay Wilson (held two weeks ago) where it is implied Starcraft 2 and Battle.net 2.0 would be launched simultaneously, which makes the rumor very unlikely.

Jay Wilson: Well we have a brand new version of the Battle.net that is in the works. It’s going to come out with Starcraft 2. I cannot really steal their thunder in terms of the specific feature set, because that is their announcement to make. What I can talk about is the philosophy. It is essentially as a company our goal is to provide the best online experience that players will have in gaming.

Fans have been submitting the rumor as a news heads up, but Mockery, Sol_Invictus and I reached a concensus not to post about the rumor unless we had an official statement from Blizzard Entertainment. We wish to post news responsibly.

I was at the Blizzard Worldwide Invitationals and played Starcraft II. All reviews online say it is a very polished game. All it needs is start beta testing process for balancing. Anyone who has played Starcraft II at the public hands-on events will tell you that game is ready to ship.  It is unlikely that Diablo 3 could be released before Starcraft II. That’s my personal view. My recommendation to all forum members is to please refrain from posting alleged leaks or baseless rumors. Moderation is in full swing by our roster of moderators. We do not wish fans to get misinformed or misled.

Diablo III Community Manager Bashiok responded Diablofans.com with an official statement concerning the rumor:

We’re pleased with the development progress on both StarCraft II and Diablo III and are looking forward to sharing more news about both games at next month’s BlizzCon event. Development is proceeding at full speed on both games, but we do not currently have any release dates to announce for either game.

Share your comments with other Diablo Fans.

World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King Collector’s Edition Revealed!


GameStop, Inc.
Pre-order now!

Wrath of the Lich King invades stores November 13th. In the frozen wastes of the north, the Lich King Arthas Menethil rallies his undead army and schemes to bring an end to all life on Azeroth—and in a couple of months, you’ll begin your epic journey into Northrend to confront the Lich King and his minions yourself. Blizzard Entertainment’s second expansion to World of Warcraft—Wrath of the Lich King—will be in stores on November 13 in North America, Europe, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, and Russia, and on November 14 in Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Singapore, and Malaysia. The expansion will be available in Korea and the regions of Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau on November 18, and the launch timing for China will be announced at a later date. For more information, read the press release or visit the Wrath of the Lich King website.

Wrath of the Lich King will be available in both a standard edition and a special Collector’s Edition (in select areas). The Collector’s Edition will contain an art book, behind-the-scenes DVD, exclusive in-game pet, and more. For pictures and a complete list of contents, check out the Collector’s Edition website.

Blizzard Entertainment has announced that World of Warcraft: The Wrath of the Lich King will ship in standard as well as Collector’s Edition packages. The Collector’s Edition will come in a special box that contains many exclusive extras to enhance your adventure into Northrend, including:

  • World of Warcraft: The Wrath of the Lich King on DVD-ROM.
  • The Art of World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King, a 208-page book featuring never-before-seen images from the game.
  • An exclusive in-game pet: Frosty, the baby frost wyrm.
  • A behind-the-scenes DVD containing over an hour of developer interviews, the Wrath of the Lich King intro cinematic with director’s commentary, and more.
  • The official soundtrack CD, containing 21 epic tracks from the game, along with exclusive bonus tracks.
  • A mouse pad featuring a map of the newly opened continent of Northrend.
  • Two World of Warcraft Trading Card Game March of the Legion™ starter decks, along with two exclusive cards available only in the Collector’s Edition.

The behind-the-scenes DVD will offer developer interviews and commentary on all aspects of the creation of Wrath of the Lich King, as well as trailers and cinematics from the game, and even footage of panel discussions from BlizzCon 2007.

Collector’s Edition owners will also be able to take their adventures from the computer to the tabletop with two starter packs for the World of Warcraft Trading Card Game—one for themselves and one to share with a friend. In addition, Collector’s Edition owners will receive two exclusive tournament-legal World of Warcraft Trading Card Game cards to incorporate in their decks or trade with other World of Warcraft TCG players.

With the Collector’s Edition-exclusive in-game pet, Frosty the baby frost wyrm, you’ll be the envy of your guildmates and other players as you roam the expanses of Northrend.

A soundtrack CD with stirring music from the expansion pack, a beautiful coffee table book with exclusive concept art, and a Northrend-themed mouse pad round out the wealth of bonus items available in the Collector’s Edition of World of Warcraft: The Wrath of the Lich King. Head over to our Wrath of the Lich King Pre-Order page now to learn more about pricing and availability of both the Standard and the Collector’s edition.

Pre-Order your regular or Collector’s Edition while supplies last by clicking this image below:

GameStop, Inc.

Wrath of the Lich King - Inscription Glyphs

I have been working the past days on something you would like to visit often as your source for Inscription Glyphs. Whether you are adopting this new profession, or simply seeking which glyphs are available out there in order to go shopping on trade channel (WTB X glyph).

This is only a preview. I haven’t finished all of the classes.  Since Blizzplanet doesn’t data mine, I am doing this manually: cropping and cleaning the tooltip transparency. In total, I have found around 156 recipes available from the Grand Master Inscriber.  What you will view in the following page is barely less than 50% of those. I will be announcing updates during the week. Thus far, Warrior and Death Knight recipes haven’t been added to the beta build 8896. For future reference the Inscription link will be on our Wrath of the Lich King left menu. Spread the word.

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