Monthly Archives: March 2012

#45 New achievements, No beta.

One of the aspect of the Mist of Pandaria that I have yet to cover from the press release/beta trial/datamining was the recently added player achievements. I have no excuse for not covering these changes sooner, as my guilds biggest achievement whore I should have talked about the achievements the moment it was revealed (I even brag about my achievement score in my About page).

That's right ladies, it's over TEN thousand

 

As I was reading through the achievement, they had their usual upgraded achievements, the achievement for getting to level 90, the achievement for maxing out your profession skills again, and the whole bunch for exploring new the new lands and completing most of the quests in the new areas. Nothing too shocking, these are just the standard achievements that was in for Wrath and Cataclysm. I’ll have these completed within the first few months of the game going live.

Then there’s the heroic dungeon achievements and even though the dungeons are not on the beta yet, they do offer some hints about upcoming fights.

Bombs while bomb – Trigger 15 explosions within 15 seconds during the Saboteur Kip’tilak encounter on Heroic Difficulty.

Hate Leads to Suffering – Defeat Taran Zhu while every party member is at maximum hatred in Shado-pan Monastery on Heroic Difficulty.

I Am the Hopocalypse! – Smash 100 vermin with a single hammer swing in Stormstout Brewery on Heroic Difficulty.

These only show us glimpse of the Heroic fights that could be, but from the descriptions it looks like these achievement runs will be more ‘fun’ than the heroic fights. sure I might die a few dozen times to make sure that there is a bomb explosion ever second, or that I have to destroy 100 lil’ creatures but it SEEMS the fights will be better from it. No doubt that these achievements are for the heroic dungeon achievement with a reward of a really cool looking flying mount which I will also strive for.

One more thing I need to complete before Mist.

In Mist of Pandaria, Blizzard will also be adding some more non-sequitur achievements. I mentioned somewhere on this blog that one of the best thing I liked about the Molten Front quest hub was not the daily progression, it was the achievements you could to whenever you felt bored and you wanted to do something unimportant. The Gang War, Flawless Victory, and my personal favorite, King of the Spider-Hill achievements were not at all connected to one particular quest or a lore encounter, they were just there to do on the side.

What a View – Visit each of the 10,000 waterfalls of Pandaria.

and

That Rabbit’s Dynamite! – Slay the ferocious Darkmoon Rabbit.

Shows that Blizzard will still be making these achievements which I think is the truest form of achievements, just something to do for 30 minutes at most.

I want this Monty Python achievement to only be done in a 40 man raid, and I want the bunny to be critter sized.

 

Even though Blizzard has just announced they gave out 100,000 more beta invites to Annual Pass owners, sadly I am not one of them.  But at the rate they are giving them out it’s only a matter of time until I get that invite on my Battle account.

By: TwitterButtons.comI’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the lead up to the next World of Warcraft expansion with my own reflections about the last dying moments of the Catalysm’s Twilight Hour as we look into the Mist of the new day. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

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#44 Just like Pokemon

Last night WoWhead released a whole bunch of datamined information that shines more light on the Pet battle system. For those who do not know this is Blizzard’s attempt to stave off burn out of the players, they created a turn based battle system designed to pin your (no longer) noncombat pet against another player’s noncombat pet. Before we go on just to make it perfectly clear it is the Pokemon that Nintendo refuses to make.

You battle with your collection of pocket-sized monsters and you go out and catch wild pets around the world, and you can level the pets to be stronger when you fight against other player’s pets all taking place in an MMO world. Lets look at the new information and see what to expect from these Pokect Sized Monster fights.

Pet Types

Every pet will be categorized into a different type: Beast, Critter, Dragon, Flying, Mechanical, and Water pet types. Just like Pokemon, these pet types will have certain strengths and weaknesses when fighting others pets. Water pets, like the Sea Pony, will deal more damage to Mechanical pets and Mechanical pets will deal more damage to humanoid pets. Each pet will also have their own fighting types, with beast focusing on melee attacks while dragons will be focused on doing single and AoE attack spells, from the information it looks like we might also have a double battle option in the near future.

Wild Pets

In the Mist of Pandaria expansion the players will be able to find  pets that you can find in the wild… and just like Pokemon you will be able to catch these wild Pets to add to your collection. There are some pets that will only be found under certain circumstances like where can they be located, or what time of day it is.  What I like about this concept is that more pets can easily be added in next patches or expansion, and if you are a true Petbattle master you will be off reexploring old parts of the world again.

This rare Balloon pet will only appears on Fridays, near the Valley Windworks....Err I mean the Darkmoon Faire

Movesets

The attacks that were datamined offers nothing too shocking, there are your basic Chomp and Dragon’s Breath, but they also have status inflicting moves too. In both competitive and noncompetitive Pokemon matches the players constantly think about the moves that poison, burns or freezes the enemy Pokemon its as part of strategy of the game and I’m glad that the more indept stretegy will be added to the game,winners of the matches won’t be detrimental by who ever has the hardest hitting spells.

End Game

Although it is not said in the “leaked” information, I am worried about the end game of this Pet Battle system. When WoW players get their hands on this in the beta, you can bet that there will be some people who will find out the best pet combination and moveset for each member of your team. If implemented poorly I fear that we will see players only use a handful of cookie cutter team builds simply because the Prairie Dog has better stats than the Hare, which is against Blizzard’s plan of more character customization.

I am reminded of a question posted on the Warcraft Forums where a person is asking why can’t noncombat pets give out certain buffs to players . A Blue replied that it was a good idea, but they would never implement it because if players found out which is the best pet-buff to have in PVE or PVP then players would always have that pet out, never bringing out any other in fear of losing that one extra bit of edge. With the Pet battle system, there is a fine line that Blizzard is walking on. The mini-game needs to find a balance between the difficult, math busting hardcore turn based strategy and the pointless, unrewarding mind numbing time sink that is on the other side of the spectrum. (like archaeology!)

By: TwitterButtons.comI’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the lead up to the next World of Warcraft expansion with my own reflections about the last dying moments of the Catalysm’s Twilight Hour as we look into the Mist of the new day. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

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#43 A PVEer’s look at the changes done to PVP

One of my goals for this upcoming expansion is to get back into the PVP aspect of the game. I used to do a lot of battlegrounds in late Burning Crusade, that was because the day I dinged level 70, was the same day Blizzard announced the release date for Wrath of the Lich King and I could not find a guild that was still running raids at that time (not to mention the requirements to actually start raiding was ridiculous)

So I spent most of the buildup of Wrath in battlegrounds, grinding tokens to get my Black War Mounts, it was back in the day when you needed 30 tokens of each Warsong gulf, Arathi Basin and Alterac Valley.

In Wrath I swayed towards the PvE side of end gaming and continued into Cataclysm, but as I read the new changes to PVP and the new battlegrounds soon to be added, the more excited I am into getting back into PVP. Lets look at the changes and battleground ideas that Blizzard want to add in Mist of Pandaria.

PVP Stat changes

One of the big headlines of the changes to PVP is the elimination of the resistant stat on PvP gear. Instead of Spell Penetration and Resistance, those stats will be substituted for more simpler stats called Power (PVP) and Defence (PVP). Simply put Power lets you dish additional damage to only other players, while Defence will let you absorb more of the incoming damage. To be frank, I don’t know how this is is different than the current stats, but that can be blamed on my lack of PVP friends.

I will say, the whole resilient stat was one of the barriers to entry that stopped me from playing in Cataclysm, I couldn’t get into the PVP world because I didn’t have the gear for it and I couldn’t get the gear because I was constantly three shotted in PVP fights.

Battlegrounds

No new expansion would be complete without adding a few new battlegrounds, and in Mist of Pandaria players will be able to fight in two new battlegrounds called Silver Shard Mine and Temple of Mogu
In Silver Shard Mine, the objective is to claim and escort a mine cart with some very important minerals from the spawn point to the end of the rails. Whichever faction gains control of the mine cart as it reaches it the end will win points, and looking from the map it looks like the faction needs a few mine carts to win the match. This game seems to be inspired from a Team Fortress 2 game called Push the Kart. My brother who is HUGE fan of TF2 said that the match is “dandy like candy” so I look forward to fighting it on my mage.

Looking at how small the map is there's a good chance that you will need to beat the other team with 3 mine carts. (Thanks to WoWhead for these concept art)

The other battleground, Temple of Mogu focuses on the players not the environment. If Silver Shard Mine is like Push the Kart, then this battleground is like Murderball. The goal of Temple of Mogu will be for the team gain control of an artifact in the middle of battleground and the faction in control of the artifact will win points of their side. The special mechanic about this fight is that the player that gains control of the artifact will have an increase damage dealt AND increase the damage taken from other players. The plan is to have the artifact constantly change hands, resulting in a more exciting fight.

A nice simple field, to easily find the person you are suppose to kill

I’m glad that Blizzard is moving away from their old way of creating battlegrounds where it’s just capturing and controlling bases (AB, AV, IoC, BtG) or Capturing the flag (WSG, EotS, TP) and start looking at what other popular PVP games have made in terms of arenas and matches.

With the Stat changes, and the new battlegrounds I look forward on expanding my gameplay by casting my mighty fireballs and pyroblast at enemy members of the Horde, as well as the enemy monkeys and Shas.

I mentioned at the beginning of this post that PVP was one of my goals going into Mist of Pandaria, so I think it’s time to provide an update on my progress with my goals leaving Cataclysm. So I have gathered all five pieces of the my mage’s tier 13 set, and I have gone above and beyond the 75k gold goal I had in mind. I now have over 80 thousand gold, I have so much gold that I can now spell the word “BOOBS” with all of my gold. I may be 20 year old in college, but I still laugh at the same things I used to laugh at in elementary school.

I'm so rich that I can AFFORD to have this type of humor!

By: TwitterButtons.comI’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the lead up to the next World of Warcraft expansion with my own reflections about the last dying moments of the Catalysm’s Twilight Hour as we look into the Mist of the new day. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

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#42 A few gems of the dataminings.

This is the 42nd post on this site and what kind of geek would I be if I did not talk a little bit about Douglas Adams.

The Late Great Douglas Adams was the writer of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, his work was the first book that actually made me laugh out loud while I was reading his books. He is easily one of my favorite writers of all time.

So in honor of Mr. Adams, lets boot up the Infinite Improbability Drive, see what we get and lets get this blog post going!

How Improbable.

A segway? That’s odd. I guess I could use a segway, so yesterday night Blizzard officially opened its beta servers for Mist of Pandaria. Even though I signed up for the Annual Pass, with a million other players, I sadly was not the first wave of players to get beta access.

While Blizzard has said that everyone who bought the beta key will get receive them, they just can’t justify having a million people trying to log in on the first night that is why they are releasing the beta keys in ‘chunks’. I do understand Blizzard’s stance, I’m still a little sad that I can’t play the new experience while I see everyone else having fun.

So while I and many other people are waiting for that special confirmation email all we can do do is sit back, look at the datamined screen captures and information and predict what might their purpose be.

All thanks to MMO Champion for their work in Datamining these images

I would not be surprised if, in a land that have been cut off from the rest of Azeroth, to have their elementals be completely different from what the rest of the world’s elementals looks like. I don’t know if they are friendly elementals or if I’ll be slaughtering them for the whole expansion, for the new elemental mats.

Pictures does not do this beast justice. Full video HERE

First thought: WANT! Second thought: This looks like the super special, hard to get, mount of this expansion. I do like how the art style of the elementals and dragon are like the Mulan movie, big brod ink brush strokes for  water, wind and fire.

This IS NOT the image you want to see on your phone before you go to bed.

There is no doubt that this expansion will NOT be tailored for children and little kids. These baddies are called the “Ska”, these are the physical manifestation of all negative emotions in Pandaria, the main bad guys for the expansion. And  I don’t want to meet the kid who have these monsters in their picture books.

Glyphs – There are too many to cover, there’s a full list HERE, but I’m happy that Blizzard are adding more glyphs are don’t affect gameplay, but are just there to be a fun and colorful cosmetic change. Like the Glyph of the Stag that makes a druid’s travel form into a stag, that acts as a mount to party members. and Glyph of Mana Gem, which makes a mage’s Maga gem hold TEN charges! This segment is so big that I think I might have to dedicate a full blog post about the new glyphs and my thoughts on them.

I am beyond excited for this expansion. This is the first expansion that I am actively searching through all of beta information, and everyday I will be checking my Battlenet account, for the moment I am accepted into the Beta. Here is the place where you can follow all of my adventures through the beta.

By: TwitterButtons.comI’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the lead up to the next World of Warcraft expansion with my own reflections about the last dying moments of the Catalysm’s Twilight Hour as we look into the Mist of the new day. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

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#41 What to do with Garrosh?

WARNING: This blog post contains Heroic spoilers (To learn about my spoiler system, please read Be MOP #39 “Diablo and Spoilers”). It will cover the events and speculations of Garrosh Hellscream 

Man, I’m excited. Not only is there a whole bunch of new information about Mist of Pandaria expansion, but now this blog can finally develop into what it was alway ment to be when I created back in December, a blog that talks about the recent development this expansion, mixed with my own  predictions. So lets start it off right and proper with discussing what will happen with Garrosh Hellscream.

Blizzard has confirmed that Garrosh is going to be the final boss of Mist of Pandaria, as soon as the information was annouced there was waves of people in the comments already celebrating the fact that Garrosh will be dead soon.

A visual representation of the WoW forums after the players heard that we are fighting Garrosh

As much I would love to break out the champagne I’m hesitant, I don’t think that  Garrosh will be killed by the players, and I would not put it past Blizzard to still keep him as the warchief when the everything is done. I read, and reread every bit of news about the Garrosh lead up and fight and I can not find any bit of information that said that we will be killing him. That’s a warning sign that Garrosh will be alive for the next expansion.
So I would like to propose Be MOP’s official prediction about the Garrosh fight in the siege on Orgrimmar, and once the expansion goes live we can look back and see if this will be correct or not.

So in mist, Garrosh will continue his aggressive campaign  in Pandaria and no doubt that he will push too far, that it will cause the tension of both the Alliance and the members of the Horde  that are unhappy with the current warchief (Thank you Justin) to boil over.

I’m guessing that Garrosh will do something that just makes everyone furious at him. I have no doubt there will be a terrible act that Garrosh will allows like agreeing to destroying an ancient or holy temple ( I mentioned it before, I really want to blow up one of those old temples), but it won’t be evil. What many people need to remember is that Garrosh is war hungry and aggressive but he’s not evil, Blizzard will not make a him try to ally himself with the Burning Legion or the Old Gods in order to gain the upper hand in the war.

He of all people should know the cost of working with the Demons in order to gain a victory.

So the invasion/siege of Orgrimmar takes place and players will fight tooth (fang) and nail (claw) to get to the seat of Garrosh, and after we fight him. I predict that as we wittle down the health of Garrosh at the last possible moment we are stopped by the other leaders of the Horde. The other race leaders then would go through the act of stripping Garrosh’s armor from him, a big thing to an orc, since one’s honor is a big part of their culture. Then the trolls, taurens, undeads, goblins, blood elves, and the other orcs will either elects a new warcheif or keeps Garrosh as the leader but reminds him that his is not unquestionable (this whole raid could be an example of a very aggressive check and balance system for the Horde). At the end of it all, Garrosh still lives, coming out of the experience alot more humility than before

I am so certain on my theory that I have a bet with one of my friends about if Garrosh will die by our hands or not, we have $15 on the line. Why $15, because it’s one month of WoW.

By: TwitterButtons.comI’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the lead up to the next World of Warcraft expansion with my own reflections about the last dying moments of the Catalysm’s Twilight Hour as we look into the Mist of the new day. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

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#40 Blizzard’s Press Release!

WARNING: This blog post contains both Normal and Heroic spoilers (To learn about my spoiler system, please read Be MOP #39 “Diablo and Spoilers”). It will cover most of the information in Blizzard’s press release.

Oh boy, It’s here! After a week of waiting we finally get some much needed information about the Mist of Pandaria expansion.

Because I had an eight o’clock class and that I live on the east coast I, sadly, could not stay up until West coast’s midnight to be some of the first people to read the news and write a blog post withing the hours of the NDA lifting.

So this blog will be my first impressions of reading all the news from my phone in my bed, before I had to go to my two morning classes ((This post will not cover everything thing that is released last night, it will talk about the news I thought was important. I suggest going to WoWhead or WoWinsider for all of the latest news articles.))

Lets start off with some non-important information now, and work our way to the juicier topics.

Female Pandarens.

As Blizzard promised, they reveled what the female Pandarens actually looks like.

Ta Dah!

This is nothing really new, since we saw the silhouette and the image doesn’t have anything contraversal. There is no major comments to be made, except that you can choose a red female pandaren or a black female pandarian.

11th Character slot

Again nothing too important, it’s just a need that needed to be addressed when Blizzard added another class/race option. You have to buy the expansion pack to unlock the 11th slot.

Good for Blizzard for cranking it up to 11!

New Charater UI

Mist of Pandaria will bring forth a new way to customize your character, instead of clicking through the options, It’s not surprising that this old way of character customizing will be getting an upgrade.

The Quests.

In the press release Blizzard wanted to stress the importance that when the players get the Mist of Pandaria expansion, the whole story arc of the Alliance’s and Horde’s interaction in Pandaria will be completed in the first patch (Patch 5.0) and any new patches will act as epilogues of to the major events that had happened.

This is a new game development style for Blizzard, in previous expansions the story arc ended when the major villain dies in the last patch. Now we get the promise that players will see the epic conclusion of the stories now, instead of waiting for months to see the last chapter of the expansion (Black Temple, ICC, and Dragon Soul)

And speaking of epic moments, lets look at one of the story tease that was mentioned a the press release. *AGAIN SPOILERS OF THE LORE/QUEST EVENTS OF THE NEXT EXPANSION UP AHEAD*

Blizzard has said that in Mist of Pandaria, players will participate on a siege on Orgrimmar, with the goal to strip Garrosh Hellscream’s armor from him.

Holy Shit!

That means two possible things, first it seems that a part of the Horde are not happy about their current leader’s recent decisions. More importantly it means that the Alliance will finally fight back in the war. My thoughts on that is : YES! It’s about time.

That was the only bit of news that made my jaw drop when I read that and made me completely support this expansion, if only for that one, potently glorious quest chain.

I could go on for countless more paragraphs, but I need to curb my hunger. To save content for the weeks or months until the next bit of information comes out.

 

By: TwitterButtons.comI’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the lead up to the next World of Warcraft expansion with my own reflections about the last dying moments of the Catalysm’s Twilight Hour as we look into the Mist of the new day. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

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#39 Diablo and Spoilers

Much to the surprise of, well everyone, Blizzard announced on Thursday that Diablo III will be released May 15th.

Soon!

I’m super excited for this news, not only it is a sign that WoW beta team can move in and start their production on Mist of Pandaria. The other reason why I’m excited for the release date is that it’s the week AFTER my college finals, and for that I thank them for that. But back to the topic of the day, spoilers.

Today I want to talk about spoilers, next week Blizzard’s press release information will flood the news sites. I want to make sure to cover the news, and later the beta experience without spoiling the game for my readers.

I’m going to create a spoiler system for every new bit of information that I will be writing about. From now on there will be two different levels of spoilers and keeping with the WoW theme they will be titled the “Normal Spoilers” and the “Heroic Spoilers”

Normal Spoilers will be blog posts that cover the news that Blizzard has already released on their official website. For example: When Blizzard release the Monk Talent system, when I can give my thoughts on the play style of the monk class in the beta, or my first impression on the looks of a new area within the beta. All of those will be prefaced with the “Normal Spoilers”

I have a feeling that I am going to have so much fun with the monk class.

 

Heroic Spoilers are just the heroic raiders wanting the lasted cutting edge development. These blog posts are going to be about the topics that are not on the official website. Plot development, specific dungeon walk-throughs, and the more specific aspects of the game.

When I write a post about the beta, I will make sure that at the top there will be a spoiler warning, depicting the warning level and the topic that the post will be about so that the readers can turn away quickly before I accidentally ruin the suspense and surprise of the game.

Well congratulations everyone, you have made it through the week, all that is stopping us from learning about the expansion is just two more days. I’ll meet you back here on Monday to reflect on all the newest bit of information.

By: TwitterButtons.comI’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the lead up to the next World of Warcraft expansion with my own reflections about the last dying moments of the Catalysm’s Twilight Hour as we look into the Mist of the new day. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

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