Tuesday, May 31, 2011

War of the Ancients Raid Preview Part 1

With World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, we have known for a while here would be a few raids added that weren’t in with launch. The wealth of knowledge about the Firelands raid, zone and questing around it suggests Blizzard might be taking larger scale approach to each raid tier. Not just a raid instance that hardly tells a story and where most of the people raiding those instances don’t care about or at the very least lose interest after doing the instance the first dozen times. So I thought I would share some of my thoughts based on what information we have on what we are going to get in the War of the Ancients Raid Patch.

This article will focus on out of game sources of information. The War of the Ancients has key ties to the Cataclysm. First and foremost, the War of the Ancients(WotA) was the original time the world changed. The second key point is that was the moment Deathwing broke free and went full evil and third is that the Cataclysm has brought the return of the Ancients. The Ancients, much like the Dragons, tended to work on the edges of mortal societies; yes, they had interactions but on a whole, those interactions were limited. Now like the Dragons, the Ancients return to help mortal races and likely will stay connected even after the current conflict is over.

So enough with back story, there will be enough of that as we go, the key to the WotA raids for us is Deathwing. Something is going back in time to disrupt the creation of the Demon Soul or trying to steal it from the past. We have a few early pieces of art from the World of Warcraft: Collectors Edition DVD which show the Demon soul being a focus.

While the art is very basic, it’s consistent with other early blizzard art. My logic is this: these images are why would they draw new images for the DVD when they no doubt have a bunch of Concept art for the raid already done. These images are the only ones of these unfinished quality in the whole DVD, and no WotA images are in the Art Book which also came with the Collectors Edition.

In any case, this image is of Deathwing holding the Demon Soul. Hard to say where in the timeline this would be but if we are assuming a Richard A. Knaak WotA trilogy timeline, that would most likely put it some where in the first ¾ of the second book. Or right before Malfurion and Rhonin steal the Demon Soul from Deathwing’s lair in the third book. Deathwing’s lair makes a lot of sense for raid instance. This is where his original armoring in adamantium plates took place by Goblins under the Forman Meklo. Much of this art already exists in Deepholm at Deathwing’s Fall. With the finial raid of Cataclysm being Deathwing’s Lair, this would give them a chance to make use of some art assets that can be used in two raids and not just one. From a story point of view, I think when Malfurion and Rhonin makes more sense for a raid.

Our next image is of a very pissed off Deathwing and another Dragon. Now, if we were having a raid focusing around when Malfurion and Rhonin steal the Demon Soul, then this Dragon would most likely be Korialstrasz/Krasus, much like in the way we were forced to kill Archimonde in the Battle for Mount Hyjal Instance, Malfuron and Rhonin never fought Deathwing, but with 10/25 people backing them up they can get away so Illidan can beat them up and steal the Demon soul, just as it happened before, much like how Back Morass ended with the Orcs coming to Azeroth. We the players drive off Deathwing, only to have Illidan come and steal the Demon Soul. It should be noted Metzen has said he is unhappy with the way Illidan story ended.

These two images give us an idea for part of the story but this seems more like an instance quest than full raid. Let’s look at the other key moments Blizzard did art for.

This image is of Deathing draining another dragon of its essence and putting into the Demon Soul. This took place in Wyrmrest Temple, something that is already in the game. I think this moment makes more sense for something that would be in a quest rather than as part of the raid. A trip to Wyrmrest would take a while.

This is an image of a gathering of dragons which hadn’t happened before or since when the Dragons grouped up to drive back the Burning Legion. Which was followed by Deathwings betrayal.

This is when Deathwing turned on all those around him, destroying almost all the Blue Dragonflight. He is killing Legion and mortals with no distinction; from a storytelling point of view this is a key moment in Deathwings story. If there is a WotA raid this moment almost has to be in it.

This image is of Deathwing holding Demon Soul again. Deathwing, in a fit of horrible, sadly uncreative writing has a very One Ring relationship with Demon Soul. Only rather, than being a twisted Hobbit, it’s a giant dragon holding a plain gold disc not much bigger than an orc’s hand.

Anyways, speaking of uncreative writing the end of the WotA Trilogy, the Demon Soul was put in the middle of the Well of Eternity to power the portal that will let Sargaras into Azeroth. Try as they might our Heroes are now a familiar cast: Malfurion, Rhonin, Broxxagar, Alexstrasza,,and Ysera. Lucky for them, Deathwing is fighting the commands of the Old Gods to get his precious, er, Demon Soul, back.

Deathwing flying with everything he has in this picture, to get to something. Yes, you could say it might be related to the earlier pissed off picture, but the blood coming out the eyes suggests a madness more than anger. That fits a moment late in the WotA Trilogy. Where Deathwing is trying to recover the Demon Soul despite the Old Gods telling him not too, and Sargarus needing the Demon Soul as well as the power of the Well of Eternity to enter Azeroth.

The last picture I would like to show you is this. I have no idea what is going on here. I have talked about this a bit before. Clearly that is Frostmorune, and the Dragon in the center is Deathwing from the context of the DVD. Could this be part of the reason we needed to go back in time? The shards of Frostmourne are said to be missing. Due to MANY retcons, Frostmourne’s origins are confusing at best. Maybe Deathwing is tied to the cursed blade in a way we never knew, or maybe Blizzard is setting up future story lines. Heaven forbid.

Monday, May 30, 2011

The end of Tokyopop

Today May 31, 2011 is the last day that Tokyopop will be open. Tokyopop has been having trouble for a few years now but 2011 seen they laying off most of there staff, and losing the Warcraft licenses. We don’t know why Warcraft pulled there licenses but they claimed they weren’t happy with quality and delays. Which if you look at the fact that Dragons of Outland was meant to be put out during the Burning Crusade expansion as a trilogy and second and final book just came out March 1, 2011 you can say that was a bit behind schedule for a book that is set right as Dark Portal was opened.

I want to say I have enjoyed the manga as they have provided the most on the ground view of the Warcraft Universe that has been put. Even more so that playing the game reading stories like The Journey or Blood Runs Thicker you see the world not as heroes but as the NPC’s and common folks would see it.

But there is some good news. Cryptozoic the people that put out the Warcrart Trading Card Game after Upper Deck lost the license has announced they will be putting out all the current mangas in digital format. What this means for new future manga I don’t know. Could mean that while paper manga that Toykopop is done all that was written will be out digitally for anyone that comes on later. Could mean Cryptozoic will be putting out there own manga in a digital formant. Or as I hope is that Cryptozoic will be putting out new digital and paper manga which is would make me the happiest because I like to hold my books because I have huge bookshelf that I build and it needs to be filled.

73’s Tokyopop.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

The joys of ranting

Where have all the Ranters gone.

I love a good rant. Some point of view is differed and delivered with conviction and anger regardless of how right or wrong said option might be. I was thinking about this morning while going through my Warcraft Podcasts. I don’t really have anyone that I feel I a Strong ranter.

I guess what bought this one was Totalbistut blowing up and quitting WoW again. Mind you he has done this many times and was way over due to quit which I understand having quit many times myself.

But then that got me going Jeg of Pugcast/Dregcast is gone a man who could rant about anything from the virtues of Pepsi to the B team he thinks is currently developing Warcraft.

Or Dave of Inside Azeroth Closed that show down because he thought Real ID would have “acceptable losses” allowing madmen to get real names mad men & women to hunt down people and kill them. Granted I think that was his biggest rant going on for well over an hour. But during his time on Inside Azeroth Dave happy to take on any subject he felt was be handled poorly.

UncleThursday of World of Podcast ranted in the middle of the night well before other people would wake up to hear it. Before his show I didn’t know how Jeff Kaplon was but after his show you could bet he had been blamed for something and the and the devastator that was launch of patch 1.9 also know as the AQ patch he roared with much furry.

This is why I enjoy radio like Jim Rome because sometimes the way to make a point is to run over you point with a monster trunk of rhetoric. And best rants the true rants. The rant where everything has been thinking something for ages but no one is willing to say what needs to be said.

So where have all the ranters gone. They quit for one reason or another. So is the cycle because when you have that much passion for something and are so frustrated that you start ranting about at some point you come to a breaking point and just throw up your hands say thanks for the memories and walk off. Its what happens to all ranters even those that are paid to rank like Jim Rome there are days months even when you can tell he doesn’t have it in him. But he is being paid so he shows up with the best game he can.
But the cycle of ranting is there will always be another the starts anew.


Saturday, May 28, 2011

One month

I have hit one month reaching my goal of posting something on the site every day. Seems like I'm just starting to get regular traffic not many comments let but hey these things come with time. I find myself happy with the sites progress I'm happy take suggestions on things that can be improved on. With the Podcast starting up I might cut back post a bit or just get the podcast eat up its own day of the week as far a post goes. Thanks for everyone that comes by. I hope to keep this ball rolling.

~73's Sayomara

Friday, May 27, 2011

Radio Coffee with a Batchelor

Here are some great podcasts which I'm currently listening too and love dearly. Some are political some aren't

Coffee & Markets
Strong conservative podcast done weekdays. But wide free ranging from Modern Opera to accountability of Non-governmental organizations. By far one of the smartest Conservative Podcasts out there. Even if your just looking for a different point of view. These guys don't yell, they don't believe crazy conspiracies just politicos and economist who like talking politics.

The John Batchelor Show
Once again political with conservative lean but guest ranage from places like The Nation, to Hover institute. And everywhere in between. Fridays and Saturdays are normally all about books upcoming books most of which aren't political. Been listening to this show since 2003 or so and I great love it, and who can hate a show that Goes out on Midnight the Stars and You just like The Shining...

Radio Free Skaro

Its Doctor Who time again and if your looking for the best Doctor Who podcast on the internet then your looking for Radio Free Skaro. Which is the greatest title of something from 'Little bugs have lesser bugs" I've been listening to RFS since late 2008 and its just nice to hear the point of view from people that have a background in TV and what they think of Doctor Who.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Grand Old Podcast Episode 0: The Gathering

Episode Zero

Welcome to Grand Old Podcast, a World of Warcraft Story Podcast where our goal is to cover all the published stories in the Warcraft Universe.

Amazing I started thinking about podcasts that I would like to make in July of 2009 and started this blog in August of 2009. Idea has come along way since then. Some Author say the longer an idea has to stew the better it will become, others say art is never finished only abandoned. This podcast falls somewhere between those two points. But I will do my best to make it best it can be.

Today’s Episode Zero is fairly short, but I thought I would add a few resources for those wishing to get started.

Back in 2006, Taverncast did a few segments putting voice to the lore “The History of Warcraft” on the official site.

These can be found in two parts
Part 1 March 12th, 2006 - Collected Lore I
Part 2 November 3rd, 2006 - Collected Lore II

If you know nothing of the lore this a good place to start.

Richard 'Greyseer' Powell of Lorecrafted wrote a nice timeline that shows where in the timeline most of the Novels sit. From there you can figure out ballpark where other items might be.

Warcraft, the Novel Timeline

All that being said, I have plans and news laid out for first few shows but if people would like me to focus on something here early let me know either by Email at Grandoldpodcast@gmail.com

Or via Twitter at Sayomarav or GrandOldPodcast

And of course you can leave a comment in thread.

Welcome, and I hope you enjoy the ride.

RSS, Direct Download


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Thursday Video Game Music for May 26, 2011

I have been giving a lot of love to the NES, and modern games. But we all know there were great games on the SNES as well. For some reason people HATE Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island. But I loved and played the heck out of the game. So I decide to have a few extra music sample today and the end credit video because I bet even those that played the game haven't seen it in years.

Flower Garden

Final Boss Music

The ending, (which is just beautiful)


Tuesday, May 24, 2011


I had planned on a different post tonight but in its place I thought I would share this. You can see it is a follow up email to the first 7 days free offer saying I only have a few days left to take advantage. As I stated in my last post on this issue my plan was to wait until Firelands came out to give it a test run but I guess I only have a limited window. The cynical part of me thinks they are just trying to get there quarter two numbers up so blizzard doesn't have to go in front of there shard holder again in two months and explain why they keep losing people. And if that isn't the case I guess I can expect another one of these emails when the Firelands comes out anyways in effort to bring me back.

I'm tempted not to even use the thing. Take this with the fact the Scroll of Resurrection system only allows Vanilla and Burning Crusade account to be brought back to say nothing of Wrath of the Lich King accounts or Cataclysm account which is just stupid. I just find the way Blizzard is dealing with costumers that have left the World of Warcraft a bit lacking if there goal is to bring me back for the long term.

I guess I only have a day to make up my mind =/

Monday, May 23, 2011


It’s that time again; for people to fall over themselves to go a Con were they will be crammed like fish in a barrel, treated like shit, and given no information they couldn’t have gotten for free from their homes. Yep, its time for Blizzcon ticket sales.

Maybe it is the human need to see holy sites, be it Meeca, Jerusalem, Allahabad, Lumbini or the Vatican. These places have a power over people, even though many would describe them in much the same way I talked about Blizzcon above. I just don’t see the need for the Blizzcon pilgrimage.

From what I can tell there are one of two reasons you speak highly of your time at Blizzcon. First, you have special access. Take TheWych from Bind on Equip Episode 99. He speaks very highly of the whole experience. Contrast, that with Rustee from Slash 2 just raging on the whole event in Ventchat 45. The same trend can also be see with people like Nobunaga of Blistered Thumbs who have special access to really enjoy the event, against the cast of Analog Hole Gaming talking about there time at Blizzcon 2008.

What I take away from all the conflicting accounts is that if you have people to see at Blizzcon, it can be a lot of fun if you want to use Blizzcon as time for a meet up. If you’re being invited inside the Blizzard Headquarters because they like you for some reason, it also can be a lot of fun. But if your just going to the convention, don’t bother. There are Conventions like San Diego ComicCon, or DragonCon, etc… which are bigger, have more panels, and cost less to go to.
I know people already have tickets and if you’re looking forward to it, I hope you enjoy your time, but it honestly seems that even under the best conditions it’s a lot of stress.

If you want some different views, check out these podcasts episodes from people who have been to Blizzcon and aren't just commenting from afar.

1. Slash 2 ep 55 Blizzcon 2010
2. Blue Plz 2005 thoughts Season 1 ep 22 Blizzcon 2005
3. WoW Insider Show 164 Blizzcon 2010
4. World of Warcast 110 Blizzcon 2010
5. Twisted Nether Blogcast 106 Blizzcon 2010
6. Twisted Nether Blogcast 56 Blizzcon 2009
6. WoWcast 29 Blizzcon 2007
7. Rawrcast 93 Blizzcon 2010

Upcoming & Thanks

If you have been following me on twitter you know I have been hitting some writers block I find when I get to a point like this its good just to write until its clears and that often involved rambling.

Here are some of the subject I’m working on. A history of the Raventusk trolls. Thoughts on Couples in Warcraft why are there so few. The Sylvanas tight rope walk for blizzard. My thoughts on what might be coming in the War of the Ancients raid. Other Heroics we are likely to see updated in the future. Episode zero of my Podcast should also be going live this week.

If I can get over this writers block I think I’ll be set, and I’m thankful to all the people that have been coming to the site, and retweeting, also to Fen from Ventchat for mentioning the Blog on the May the 21 2011 Ventchat. Special thanks to my wife Falina, and Marathanes for editing. Of course r9sid9nt9vil of eviscerated.net who has been my sounding board for all my crazy ideas.

Thank you

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Brotherhood of the Horse & Karazhan

One of the Warcraft mysteries I have been trying to track down for sometime was more or less answered a few days ago. If you look at the Warcraft 1 Manual, which you can find as a pdf all over the internet. You notice talk of a group called Brotherhood of the Horse. These were knights of Stormwind which Anduin Lothar was a member.

Now a lot has changed in the World of Warcaft since Warcraft 1. Karazhan not the least of which. So when Karazhan came back at the start of Burning Crusade. A gentlemen named wowBaluki added to the Brotherhood of the Horse page that this they had been based out of Karazhan. If you look at stables of Karazhan and architecture taken with the fact there is a Knight on Horse back there. You would most likely agree that there is quite a bit of circumstantial evidence to point to a group of Horsemen once being based of Karazhan.

But Myself and others didn't buy it 100% because there are other reasons these horse might be there too. And the Wowpedia article is so specific its to a clear source. Reading of Warcraft I & II manuals turned up no new detains nor did a rereading of The Last Guardian.

So I figured I would send a message to wowBaluki and he sent me this message

"@SayomaraV Source of Kara info might be this article: http://nyti.ms/mbRssn Maybe also WC1 manuals. Too bad we weren't sourcing stuff then"

I have to say the New York Times article is by far the clearest evidence so far tying The Brotherhood of the Horse with Karazhan. Its just nice to put out messages to people even five years after to write an article and get help back. Gives you a bit of faith in other people.


Friday, May 20, 2011

List of Non-English Warcraft Podcasts for May

Last month I wrote my first post on non-English World of Warcraft Podcasts. I have since added a few Podcasts to the list. Feel free to check it out. And check the always updating WoWpedia Podcasting Page.
There are also a few listed in the Podfade area there isn't language category yet but If have a tag of (FR) if its french for example.
* Azeroth.FR
* Les Chroniques du Père Bugli
* Le Podcast des Kaluaks
* WoWTaku
* WoW-News
* WoW Titan
* World-News TV new and Updating

* 1 Hit
* Buffedcast
* Ninjacast
* Xass und Vanions Podcast added
* Russian World of Warcraft Radio
* Las Aventuras de Perle added
* Pastando en Mulgore
* wowsfera *new & updating
* Fredagsraiden


Note: The Photo at the top is the work of my buddy Scott and more of his work can be found here.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Podcasting as Art

Everything is art: painting, music, sculpture, and podcasting. However, unlike the first three, the art of podcasting is still somewhat undefined. So like any new art form we use the previous standards to analyze it as it evolves.

The first piece of podcasting art is Warcraft Less Traveled. Akin to art created in the early renaissance there is a focused, peaceful quality to the podcasts that come out of Warcraft Less Traveled. It renders onto the listener perspective about why lost parts of Azeroth matter, why a player in World of Warcraft should venture into these lost areas and why they are remarkable. If I had to draw parallels to pieces of the early renaissance, it’s like the perspective you get in Perugino’s Delivery of the Keys to Saint Peter or Gentile Bellini’s Procession of Relic of the True Cross Before the Church of Saint Mark. These pieces convey wonder and scale in ways which are often missed, even if you’ve visited the places showcased in the podcasts. I think Warcraft Less Traveled creates places that are wholly remarkable, just inside the podcast; even for those who have never played World of Warcraft. That is really a mark of quality art: that you don't even need to know the full context to appreciate the what you’re hearing. Be it a lost Tauren village on the bottom of the world, or the deeps of Karazhan. Their masterful drawing of mental pictures allows for an experience which most listeners can enjoy.

When we look at Ventchat, we are looking at a podcast that takes on themes and the nature of impressionism, from its ever-blurred definition of itself, to the abstract redefining of what it is to be a podcast. It’s not uncommon for podcasts to drift away form what they were originally created to cover. That is, much of the beauty of impressionist is that often focus is not on a single important point but rather small and often over looked points. A Burial at Ornans by Gustave Courbet depicts a large formal funeral but it’s not the man being buried that the center which is the focus of the piece, rather the piece focuses on the dog, the homeless man and the boy who can’t be bothered to pay attention. A Warcraft podcast might become a beer podcast, or a movie podcast might come to focus on one era or director. While many podcasts are unfocused, Ventchat takes the funeral that is Warcraft and adds culture and people around it. Through the hosts, it shows the way in which the world of Azeroth is populated.

What I find remarkable about Ventchat is that it goes over the same themes repeatedly, but they always feel fresh and interesting. It is much like Claude Monet’s Haystack series. I see the hosts, Fen, Turdhat, Sauces and Esta, like the haystacks: always in the picture. Sometimes not all the hosts are visible, but other things come into view.

At the same time, we have impressionist freedom through new songs and segments, which creates change. A song might be used for fifty episodes then it changes, much like the seasons. It’s a combination of slow and fast changes in the show that I think make it art. But like impressionism, you have to work into this style to understand its underlying themes. The desire to create, to be bold and a willingness to fail that is so rare should be celebrated; hosts that are willing to put themselves out there while at same time creating an experience which pushes the mind and makes you look at the world in different ways are a rarity.

There is a moment of art called Dada. This was art born out of World War I, when artists wished to move away from propaganda, profiteering, and the state’s desired reactions to conflict. Bind on Equip is all of these things, much like Marcel Duchamp’s Fountain. They aren't creating art, but rather the hosts are the art. In most podcasts, the hosts are simply a medium for information, music, and jokes. While no podcast would be complete without the hosts talking about themselves for a while, this podcast takes it to another level.

Bind on Equip takes the hosts and elevates them, while doing so in the context of a World of Warcraft Podcast. So where Ventchat is barely a Warcraft podcast anymore, Bind on Equip still is strongly tied to those roots. This strong tie to the medium in which they work and the importance they put on the hosts from an artistic point of view as well as a podcasting point view makes it a fine balancing act, which they do remarkable well. In this state Warcraft becomes not just a topic to be talked about but it is molded like clay into medium. Most podcasts are defined by what they cover from week to week. Here, the idea of Warcraft is changed to show of art that is the hosts.

Dada themes are most relevant as Bind on Equip is making a statement about what a podcast is: more than just an audio file distributed via an RSS Feed. They are changing the conventions of podcasting: how hosts should act, the content of their shows. Just as Fountain is about showing that an every day object can be a remarkable piece of art, I think Bind on Equip in the same way shows that podcast and host are also remarkable art. The statement made by Bind on Equip is "We are a podcast, no matter how much others don't think we fit into what they think a podcast should be." That is a profound statement of art.

The beauty of a podcast as art is that ideas like form and color can change from episode to episode. Form might be the order of the segments or the hosts involved: it’s the structure. The color of a podcast is world they paint. Warcraft Less Traveled creates a world of images: breath taking beauty for the minds eye. Ventchat takes the listener on a journey through music and love of community, which even as passive listener, it’s hard not to be drawn into. Bind on Equip is colored, but the hosts live their stories and their thoughts. To some degree all podcasts do the things I list, but these three take it to a different level.

It’s hard to define art. People have struggled with it for much of the modern era. Since Bird in Space, by Constantin Brâncuşi many have found art increasingly hard to define. I think the best measure of art in this modern world is if it speaks to you. Does say more than just the words that fill your ears, is there a structure, style, and color? Then it’s art. While you don’t have to enjoy it as more than the surface meaning, I encourage anyone to take a moment the next time you listen to one of these shows to go deeper and enjoy them in a new and different way.

Note: The Photo at the top is the work of my buddy Scott and more of his work can be found here.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Thursday Video Game Music for May 19, 2011

This week we are going back to the NES for Snoopy's Silly Sports Spectacular! I had a heck of a time trying to find a single track for this game, but I did find a few play through videos. I think these do a good job of showing the different types of music which are present in the game.

I only ever made the river jump once, after which I retired, never to play the game again.


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

WoW in Real Life: Sisters of Elune

I was going through some pictures from Rio de Janeiro carnival 2011.

And I cam across this image you see on the left. It just struck me as this is what Night Elves in the Temple of the Moon might look like worshiping Elune. Or doesn't that look like they are walking around in a Moonwell. The light, the water, the statues. It just speaks to me as Night elves.

While many of the ladies in the picture don't seem to be wearing much in the pants, that is not really a change for female Night Elves from what what you can see in the second picture.

Maybe its change to try to connect these to things. One could say images like these go back at least as far as the Cult of Dionysus, and most likely much further in our collective history. I have always thought it strange Night elves are drawn is such a strong sexual way, let that doesn't seem be a large part of who they are. Maybe is something few outsiders see. Or maybe age has cooled the passions in the blood to the point where few things other than trees and fighting demons and orcs get Night Elves rolling.

It is interesting that no matter where in the world you are there common themes than bind us all. And parts of the human experience that go beyond media but the very soul of show we are.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Good storytelling in Warcraft

So I wrote post Bad storytelling in Warcraft, going into some detail what I think is wrong with how Blizzard tells many of its stories. That said I would like to talk about what I think looks like to be some of good story telling in World of Warcraft.

Few weeks ago we got Patch 4.2 Preview: A Legendary Engagement. This is a blog post about the new legendary Staff Dragonwrath, Tarecgosa's Rest. This is a good story telling because we are seeing consequences to actions and consistency of characters.

First the consequences. From a story point of view one of the biggest let downs in Wrath of the Lich King was the Malygos story. As with our Troll friends huge wonderful build up(Much of which we have only gotten in the last few months well after it would have been its most timely) but that end with Malygos dying like a punk and only a few token mentions to his death. That death of one of the most powerful beings in Azeroth was little more than side note and short one at that.

So here we are almost three years later and story is moving again. The preview tells us that "Kalecgos, who champions reconciliation with other races; and Arygos a scion of Malygos who believes that his kind should withdraw from the world and forge a new path." Sadly with most stories blizzard tells we have no sapeance because we know that Kalecgos or Kalec is going to be the next Blue Aspect, but the fact that we are seeing the debate and process makes this wonderful.

The again most of the time as readers, and consumers of fictions can piece together a story, but even when we know the ending the journey is often more interesting and powerful than the destination. This also follows one of the most important rules of writing show don't tell. Sadly so often as players we only hear about things after they happen. Even huge events like the Cataclysm we didn't see it simply passed us by with us dealing with a new world.

At this point we know a lot about the Blue Dragon Flight. Through Books like "Day of the Dragon", "Night of the Dragon", "The Sunwell Trilogy", and "Dragons of Outland" Blue Dragons play key roles in all these books.

The other point I really like is the call back to Ahn'Qiraj. Both Arygos and Anachronos played there greatest role to date in Ahn'Qiraj. Arygos was one of Dragons trapped behind the Scarab Wall much like Caelestrasz who has already played a key role in the Cataclysm.

I would make special note of Anachronos heir to Nozdormu, and during the Ahn'Qiraj he helped restore the Scepter of the Shifting Sands, and take the battle back to Ahn'Qiraj. He is one of the most proactive Dragons currently in the game. So when he has a Dream that blue Dragons might be causing some doom and decides to do something about that worth taking note of.

The last call back I would like to talk about is the Two moons of Azeroth, the White Lady and the Blue Child. However since the Burning Crusade you have only been able to see one of the moons of Azeroth in the sky. The fact that blizzard is talking about the two moon and in fact featuring them makes me happy to no end. No matter how unstable two moon systems are.

If your are interested in seeing the first part of quest its in a video below. Or would like to find full quest text they can be seen here. When someone has made a video of the whole line I'll make sure to write a post about it.



So one of thing I noticed a while ago was with the ZA revamp was one of the reasons that the WoW team claimed they used it was because it was "gem."

". The team felt Zul'Aman was one of our best raid dungeons of all time, but that it launched late in the Burning Crusade expansion cycle, so not that many players got a chance to experience it when it first came out. It was really the "hidden jewel" of Burning Crusade raiding." ~Scott Mercer

Now I liked ZA when it first came out I think its still cool now. But this isn't the first time we have heard this Gem talk. When Blizzard said they were going to bring Naxxramas back for Wrath of the Lich King. Many of us that never had a chance to run the Original Naxx were interested in seeing what we had missed. And while Naxx 2.0 felt empty with so much trash having been removed,the Art which made the place remarkable was still entacted and some amazing to walk those evil halls. Yet as we spent 6 months there the place became tired and by the time Uldar had come up most people were ready to move on.

So my mind wonders what other Gems from the past does Blizzard feels that of the most Warcraft players never fully enjoyed. Sunwell Plateau is the first to jump to mind. With its late Burning Crusade Release many people never seen much of the Sunwell in its glory. Also advances in the High Elf, Blood Elf Story suggest the two sides are coming back together, and if that is the case a Sunwell Instance would be a good place to tell that Story. Add to that fact Kalecgos plays a key role in the restoration of the Sunwell has risen to even wider fame. It might be time for him to play some role again in the fate of the Sunwell.

But Let us be clear as much as I love blizzard adding to the story of a place like the Sunwell, ZA, ZG or any other instance they chose to remake. They are doing this first because it takes less time to use the art in an existing instance and to make that instance new again. Than it would take to make a new instance from scratch.

And when all a patch is just old instances made new and little else I don't have much reason to pay for the game , or even take 7 free days. I know all the story before instance is ever live, to fight the people wiping and crying and all the general QQ just isn't worth my time.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

The Warcraft movie?

A friend of mind once said what I know could fill books and what I don't know wouldn't fit into the largest library. One of things I don't know know is why people still expect the Warcraft Movie to be made. We first heard about this project in 2007 at Blizzcon. And there had been talk about going back to 2006. Since then we have heard little more than Rumors of the plot. They added a directer who seems to keep having other things to do. And that is it. Legendary pictures(who has a horrible flash site btw) Isn't even listing it on its webpage anymore. Something it once did, with films like Watchmen, and 10,000 BC both of which are log past.

Maybe it I just don't care for films as much as other people. Some of my friends like to play casting games with each other, an with projects from our childhood. There is no harm in this. But when I see major Warcraft blog still talking about this subject, I can't help but wonder how often this comes up with people playing warcraft.

Out of curiosity I did a quick google search. You can see for yourself not much going on here. I just wonder how much time and effort did blizzard to into this film and are they demanding so much control that its unlikely to come to pass. I want a good film as much as next guy but there is a line between good, and good for the money, and I wonder if blizzard and the studio have different ideas on how good they can make this film for the money they want to spend on it.

Anyways if I'm going to put my heart into a hopeless movie project that is never going to pass then it will be the Babylon 5 movie.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

7 Days Free!

On Friday May 6, 2011 I got the Email about from Blizzard, offering me 7 free days to come and check out the new patch. My wife who had also shut off her account some time ago but has Cataclysm. My Wife had been feeling bad all week about missing children's week but didn't thing a few pets was worth the 15 dollars US.

I'm happy for my wife, but still really have no reason to log in. I got my raid group, I have seen all the new 80-85 zones. My DK tank is exalted with most of the Cata reps so other than leveling alts, and going trying some of the 1-60 content to see both horde and Alliance side. I'm not sure how much gained in this patch for me to log in for 7 days and much less 30.

So lets look at what they are posiming me to come back.
*Two Newly Remastered Dungeons - Venture into the updated Zul'Gurub and Zul'Aman to defeat the Zandalari and earn all-new epic gear, rare mounts, pets and more.

Well I do like trolls and mounts. I have already seen the dungeons in videos, and mounts aren't even flying so they are just going to sit on a tab and not get used my most of my other 80+ mounts.

*PVP / PVE Currency Exchange - Convert your Honor points into Justice points, Justice points into Honor points, and Valor points into Conquest points to get the gear that you want regardless of how you spend your time playing World of Warcraft.

Sounds nice, to bad the only PvP I really can about is Tol Barad who's soul sucking daily quests have made me hate that area. And I don't care what people say the shory of Tol Barad makes little to no sense. So pvp to pve exchage is fine but as someone not playing does nothing for me.

**Weekly Bonus Valor for Dungeons - Can't log in daily? Earn bonus Valor points for the first seven times you use the Dungeon Finder during the week instead of once per day.

Once again sounds useful but you what makes my day more flexible than not running dungeons daily. Not running them ever. Its still the mostly the same old shit dungeons I have run to many time. Not I can run them all at once to encourage more burnout.

*Dungeon Finder: Call to Arms - Additional incentives for tanks and healers to reduce queue times for all players in level 85 Heroics

Nothing beats tanking randoms right...and I can't even bring one person I know it with me...yeah...

*Guild Finder - Can you only play Thursdays at noon? Are you more interested in PvP than raiding? Guild Finder will help find the right guild for you.

*Guild Challenges - Earn additional guild experience, achievements and gold when you complete these weekly tasks with your guildmates.

Once again I don't have a guild that is doing anything. I'm sure I could find a new one but as someone not playing most likely guildless. Stuff this like just move me at all.
What blizzard should have done and might still do, is give out a full month, and at least waited til 4.2 dropped. There is so much more content coming with 4.2 than 4.1 has and its unlikely a month would have been enough time to do it all. Because the issue with 7 days, is its not enough time to put down roots, get in guild, get some gear, find people you want to play or just get used to seeing your online friends again. Summer is coming and in any 7 days nice weather might keep people from WoW for 3 or 4 days alone. I'm glad I didn't have to pay for my wifes children's week pets but then again I also don't plan to take advantage of this for the foreseeable future either. Maybe if I wait long enough they will give me a pony...


Friday, May 13, 2011

Thralls Family Tree

One of the things I find amazing is the fact we don't just know Thralls parents, or his grandparents, and a Great grandparent. That's crazy. So I made a table with some of the pictures we have of this family tree. Lets ignore the fact that Thrall is basically Mosses and give you some links if your interested in any of these people.

Thrall is our head. Here

Next Aggra is his mate.

Thralls Parents
Durotan watched his people fall into darkness killed countless draenei against his better judgement but still he followed his his warchief Blackhand. And when he finally st00d up to be counted his clan was exiled and he and his Draka were assassinated.

Draka story is that of an orc who had to fight to become an warrior. Her Story and be found In Warcraft Legends 4 & 5 in a story called A Warrior Made. After becoming Durotans mate he life runs parallel to his being his adviser, and a warrior at his side.

Duratan Parents

Garad - Leader of the Frostwolf tribe died before the coming of the Horde. The Mag'har Village of Garadar in Nagrand is named for him. Its not clear if the Frost Frostwolves lived in Garadar in the Garad or not. But the style of village is like what Orc Villages looked like before the Horde.

- Mother of Duratan, wife of Garad, and Greatmother of Mag'har. When many orcs started coming coming with the Red Pox. She created a quarantined area in Nagrand. Fear of the Red Pox kept most Orcs out until the last days of the Old Horde when Kargath Bladefist came to Village looking for warriors to fight the Alliance forces that can come through the Dark Portal looking to stop Ner'zhul. When Bladefist seen the weak state orcs he decided to take his chance in the wilds rather than to keep fighting.

After the Third opening of the Dark Portal during the Burning Crusade expantion Thrall learned that Geyah was his Grandmother and came to meet her.

Draka Parents
Zuura-Mother to Draka she cared for Draka deeply even when Draka weakness in-front of Blackhand resulted in the hold family be exiled to the outskirts of the village.

Kelkar- Was Draka Father little is know of him

Kelkar Father
Rhakish- Kelkar Father, little is known of him or his time.

Thursday, May 12, 2011


You'll notice I've updated the side bar quite a bit, it now has more blogs, comics, and podcasts I enjoy this isn't everything. I had a few problems getting the code to work on the URL of some sites. But its a good cross section of what I'm reading, looking at or listening too in a given week.

Thursday Video Game Music for May 12, 2011

Part of my goal with Thursday Video game music is to highlight music people don't always think about when they think of video game music. While just about anyone knows the original Mario theme, how many people know know the key notes of the Halo theme, or even Zelda?

Anyway, one game I spent way to much time playing last year was Dragon Age: Origins, and while I think most of the music is unremarkable I do rather enjoy this track. I Am The One. I know this was used in the ending credits, not 100% sure if it was used anywhere else.


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The effects of Totalbiscuit on the Community

Love him or hate him, Totalbiscuit is a force inside the World of Warcraft community. He is often the loudest and most open about what issues he has with the game. Starting out with a show on WoW Radio, he soon took over the station as owner. After the station folded in early 2010, he has since been running the website Cynical Brit and the related YouTube channel.

Totalbiscuit(TB), or John Bain, has a checkered past. His very public remarks about the low quality of other Warcraft podcasts when he was left out of a random top 10 list on digg. left many angry to the point they never forgave John’s comments then or much later.

The difficulty with WoW Radio and its final closing has no doubt something to do with TB nature being hard to work with. I’m not saying it was all his fault, no doubt there were personality problems, but at least some of it must fall at his feet as the boss.

All that said, John has shown to be a force on YouTube, really starting during the Cataclysm Beta. When MMO Champion started linking TB's video I started taking stock of TB as more than just a blowhard that can’t get along with people but rather someone that has something to add to the Warcraft community such as it is.

Right now, as people are leaving Warcraft, Blizzard is no doubt going to start trying to step up its efforts to hold on to players. People like Totalbiscult are no doubt going to be a force in shaping that direction as much as any single player can.

His constant suggestions that guilds solve everything is a bit redundant and the constant battle against “entitled casuals” (whoever they are) has become a constant cry on the forums.

However, ideas like non-binary hard modes, that daily quests and raids aren’t enough content to keep max level players in the game, are points I agree with and ideas Blizzard should take seriously.

Personally, when taken against the all-consuming fanboyism of the places like the WoW Insider show, and Mat McCurley's squeeeee for every little thing that Blizzard gives him, TotalBiscuit's view, while harsh, is some much needed critical thought in the WoW community. (On here wow show at least). I've talked about how bias give you passion as it clearly does for the WoW Insider crew and other podcasts. But they are often blind or unlikely to criticize all but most blatant mistakes of Blizzard.

Some podcasts will never like TB such as Bind on Equip. They have good reasons, and you will always have people like the Rawrcast crew that worships at his feet. I'm somewhere in the middle. I would rather take a cynical Brit that’s much too hard on the community than fan boys that are much too soft on Blizzard. Not that either is going away, but that is an issue for another time.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The plan... the reallity

Plan for today was to run some of my ideas what is in the War of the Ancients raid sadly its taking longer than expect getting the spelling and grammar to a level I'm happy with so instead I thought I would talk some more about Warcraft Podcasting.

I know your all like no please making the bleeding stop.

The Wowpedia Podcasting page has its overhaul done, and I'm very happy with it. And the feed back has generally been add little things here and there or add this old show which is cool with me.

I'm also fairly sure I have 85-95% of currently updating Warcraft Podcasts. Korea and China make me the most nervous about having missed some vast wealth of podcasts, but due to my very limited understand of those languages right now I don't have the time or energy to go hunting for something I expect to be there. That said I could point you to a few Starcraft podcasts in those languages. But even if you don't take China and Korea into account some podcasts just tends to be a bit below the radar. Its my experience podcasts tend to be in like groups.

Back in the day Epic Dolls and Elunes Grace podcasts had a lot of cross over appeal.

I more current example would how Slash 2, Dregcast, and Ventchat all tend to come together. Fen the founder of Ventchat was looking for middle ground between Slash 2 and Dregcast. Not as free wheeling as Slash 2, but less prepared comedy than Dregcast.

These podcast have gone on to spawn other podcasts like Critical Damage, and Stopcast. If you were listener of any of the five podcasts listed above you most likely know about the others. But would you know about Weekly Random I know I sure as heck didn't until today.

You ask the average fan of one of these shows or Someone that is listening to The Instance to name something outside the frog pants network they most likely can't. A quick search of the instance forum turned up this thread talking about the end of Citizen Azeroth only two people responded which is a crime in and of itself, but goes to my point of groups of podcasts tends to be fairly insular.

This becomes the problem when there is no way to just to go into Itunes under a subject like Warcraft and have it just show podcasts with resent updates. Everything is based on there horrible stars system. Which encourages this high school like "GIVE ME 5 STARS! no matter if you like the show or not..." stuff like that goes on, in far to many podcasts. Then again anything under 80% or 4 out of 5 on Metacritic for a game is also considered a failure. I kinda wonder whats the point. Anyways Itunes doesn't care about how fresh your podcast of if you only update once a year. Its all about are you going to prom this year. Jeg was just talking yesterday about how he has tried to delist Dregcast from Itunes, and had no luck.

So, when I really want to find podcasts I have been going digging. A search of the MMO champion boards turned up three new podcasts this week two which are updating. Much of the luck I have had finding non-english podcasts has been going into the warcraft forum for that language and just searching the keyword podcast. I feel my internet search foo has gotten a lot better through all these effort but then again there are some podcasts where I simply can't find the RSS feed to save my life. The other trick I get once in a while is start chaining suggestions on Itunes. Most podcasts are popular with more than one group there is often the chance that Itunes might not think is popular but people that liked the show your looking at also like another show like it. This has also been very useful when looking for non-english warcraft podcasts since if you only speak German your most likely only interested in German podcasts.

I've rambled long enough about how I do what I Do. Hope to have some news on my podcast later in the week when things quite down for a day or to before they heat up again. We will see.


Monday, May 9, 2011

What it is to be a Night elf

Yesterday when I was young
The taste of life was sweet as rain upon my tongue
I teased at life as if it were a foolish game
The way the evening breeze may tease a candle flame
The thousand dreams I dreamed, the splendid things I planned
I always built, alas, on weak and shifting sand

I lived by night and shunned the naked light of day
And only now I see how the years ran away

When I was young,
So many drinking songs were waiting to be sung,
So many wayward pleasures lay in store for me
And so much pain my dazzled eyes refused to see,
I ran so fast that time and youth at last ran out,
I never stopped to think what life was all about
And every conversation I can now recall concerned itself with me,
and nothing else at all.

Yesterday the moon was blue,
and every crazy day brought something new to do,
I used my magic age as if it were a wand,
and never saw the waste and emptiness beyond;

The game of love I played with arrogance and pride
and every flame I lit too quickly, quickly died;

The friends I made all seemed somehow to drift away
And only I am left on stage to end the play.
There are so many songs in me that won't be sung,
I feel the bitter taste of tears upon my tongue,
The time has come for me to pay
for Yesterday When I was Young.
~ Charles Aznavour

You might be wondering why I’m opening up with a fairly old country music song. This is the story of Azshara, the Night Elves, the War of the Ancients (WotA), their fall, and a mind set have to this day. More than any book, manual, short story, or raid this is the soul of Night Elves captured.


Sunday, May 8, 2011

What does it mean?

I was watching the Collector Edition DvD the other day and I noticed in the section on the history of Deathwing there is a really odd image.

Image comes up right when Metzen starts talking about War of the Ancients and how Deathwing went mad there. Now that sword looks A LOT like Frostmourne and it looks like it has some kind symbolic power over Deathwing. I really have no idea what is going on here. But this is the first and only place were I have seen any connection between Deathwing and Frostmourne.

Heaven knows Frostmourne doesn't need more recons. Maybe this image is drawing on ties to the old gods, we know Blizzard wasn't happy with the story about how the Old Gods and the Lich King were connect. But honestly what did they expect when you don't give out any information its kind of hard to tell a story. And what little information they did give was through the mirror darkly, there is mystery and there is failing create any foreshadowing. To the point that it might as well not have been a plot point, and as far as much player were concerned there was no connection between Ulduar and Lich King, other than Lich King use a lot of Yogg-Saron blood to build stuff, and that drove a few people mad...well madder.

The other Idea i have for this sword is might have been used by some high ranking member of the Burning Legion during the WotA. We know it was made by Nathrezim.

Video below image shows up at the 1:28 mark.


Revenge of the tables!

So I have finished the remaking the Wowpedia Podcasting page. Aside from the Non-english section. Anyways now at glaces you can find the first episode of a podcast, the feed, and the age of a show.. This isn't going to change the world but its my hope it will make someone life easier. Because I can tell you some of these sites are bitch to find there RSS Feeds and a few I just gave up on.

Anyways interested in feed back and suggestions on what else to work on next or what to add from here.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

What I'm listening too

So afters the sad post to podcasts that have left us I figured I would drop in a post of what I'm listening on the Warcraft front.

This might barely be a Warcraft podcast anymore but honestly its come to be my go to podcast when it goes live. With Dregcast gone this is the podcast that I gathers the fun and community that I love so much about Warcraft Podcasting.

Liquid WoW
I come to Liquid WoW from Inside Azeroth, and while Steve and Christy aren't David and Salty. I always felt Steve was the weakest member of the that podcasting team to hear Christy do "Skinning!" in her half mad voice in their ugt ad each week, always makes me smile. That and good good mix of non-Warcraft news makes this a good for general news if your not looking for the life story of the host each week or 15 minutes of filler like All Things Azeroth has become common to do, before getting to any meaningful content.

Essence of RP
This is an over the top show dealing with issues of RP, which sometimes they get to and some times they don't. In all honestly I see AF or All might Farseer as a talking Dinosaur but that might just be me and his fiancee Xai as Hera trying to rein him in. It makes me smile and Council of Six Awol this works for now. In its place. My biggest issue with Essence of late is the the RSS feed doesn't for for crap and I often have to manually down load the episode if I want to listen to them.

New pick ups
I have added The Leetsauce Podcast, Circle of Healing, The Overlores, and Stopcast to my rotation. The only one I have been able to give much time to is the Overlores and its going to get dropped real quick if it doesn't get better soon. Others seems good from the limited times I have spent with them, The Leetsauce Podcast is a bit weak but also can be interesting seems to depend a lot on the guest.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Fading away: Podcasts that are gone

I was working on a article for my non-english Warcraft podcast list and I kept finding podcast in french, in spanish, in german, and Russian that had stopped podcasting. Now that happens nothing last forever but it reminded me that I never made mention on this blog passing of a few podcast which I greatly enjoyed and figured I might add a few that don't have an official end but have stopped updating.

Citizen Azeroth
The first Warcraft Podcast I ever listened to was World of Warcast. Hosted by Starman and Renata. It was a good show and honestly those are best episodes of Warcast. For a time Renata took a break then she came back with her own podcast. Citizen Azeroth hosted with her husband Kokomoko. The show captured what Renta did on Warcast without having to deal with Starman ego. However like so many people Renata has lost her passion for Warcraft and on April 14, 2011 she called it quits. I wish her and her husband the best in what ever they do.

Hearthstone Tavern
One of the few Warcraft podcast to break away from the format of talk about me, talk about news, and sometimes have segment. Rather most shows opened with a skit rp through the characters of the hosts. Hosted by Brent, Richard, Suzanna, and Mox shows would normally deal with some RP subject or which lore works best in role play. While I have no interest in Warcraft role play I always found the way they approached the game fun and entertaining. On April 18, 2011 Suzanna wrote farewell post saying life had just gotten to busy for the podcast. Greatness be with you all.

World of Podcast
This is still my favorite warcraft podcast of all time. The first podcast if felt would say it like it was and didn't hold anything back. Sam/UncleThursday is now doing video game reviews much like he did before his podcast. If nothing else he epic rant at Totalbiscut who in fairness I have come to respect to a some degree if only because he doesn't bag for 5 star reviews. To me Sam felt more honest in his airing of issues with Warcraft where Totalbiscut just enjoying yelling. That is not to say both don't have there problems and there redeeming qualities but World of Podcast for me will always be the best ranting podcast.

Lets be honest there aren't many women in warcraft podcasting and post of them aren't solo hosting a show, whats more most of those shows are breaking the understanding of what is a game and how it affects the lives of the host and players. WoWcast did all those things, and Alachia did an amazing job of it impirerng shows like How I WoW. Alachia has left Warcraft behind but she still podcast on Metatalks if you like to her talk about how this is all more than a game.

Funny thing about these podcasts is how interconnected they are. Starman served as Sam's cohost, as well as Lindyen who was Starman's first and now again current co-host. Alachia was Co-host on World of Warcast as well after Renata and before Lindyen, and it isn't uncommon to hear UncleThursdays name come up int World of Warcast. Sam and Alachia both guest stared in each others shows. To say nothing of there massive Burning Crusade preview show. And there are ties to Analog Hole Gaming, Taverncast, Epic Dolls and so on. Good people and they put out great content and if your feeling wondering what things were like back in the day, or different perspective on the game. Check out any of these podcasts.


Thursday, May 5, 2011

Podfading Tables!

Just got done doing major redo of the Wowpedia podcasting pages podfade section.

If anyone knows any Warcraft Podcasts not on this list either let me know or feel free to add it yourself. Also if you can help fill in any of the missing information that would also be great to have. Help is always welcome.


Thursday Video Game Music for May 5, 2011

My twitter archive doesn't seem to go back overly far, so sorry if you were looking for posts before April 28, 2011.

This week we have the music from the NES Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Game.

It's amazing the hours I spent falling at this game and I always enjoyed the music. This is a good cross section of music of the early levels.

This guy is a lot better than I ever was =)

Update: Added a compete play through video because you know how many of us ever really got past the first two stages without a game genie

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Bias in Warcraft Podcasting

So I wrote this article about bias a few days ago, and I was driving home last night and it hit me. That I'm holding many WoW Podcasters to a double standard.

For example on April 29, 2011 the WoW Insider Show hosted by Mat McCurle really rubbed me the wrong way. Not because he was enthusiastic, but because it seemed like he reading all the new patch information with rose colored glasses on, and had become little more than blizzard PR. But as I drove home I realized it's that bias that drives Mr. McCurle to keep talking about Warcraft and to do a show about it. Sure, he gets paid but to get to the point where you even think about writing for a paid site you have to care about World of Warcraft and Blizzard 99% more than the average gamer.

However, the other half of my article was being honest about biases. I think anyone paid to write about a subject has a nature bias. But why did this over the top enthusiasm seem so wrong? I think it boils down to counter point. I enjoy being contrary. When I hear someone running at full speed in one direction my nature is to turn around and run the other way. The podcasts I enjoy most are those that put critical ideas into well thought out podcasts. Sadly, once you start being critical of something, you stop being as biased and enthusiastic, and then you quit.

Yes I did you say bias = enthusiasm. That is not to say you can't overcome your bias to see both sides. But the more evenhanded you become,the more you slide towards apathy. The slide towards apathy happens anyway the longer you do anything. But long standing podcasters have to be biased otherwise they would just quit.

I'm trying to keep this in mind. Podcasts are done as long as they are enjoyable to the host, and if that bias is what keeps them going and keeps people listening I just let that go. I don't have to listen to it, but that doesn't mean I have to like it either.


Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Satchel of Exotic Mysteries

Something I find kinda odd is that that lack of talk about the fact the contents of Satchel of Exotic Mysteries changed. This is the reward for Call to Arms feature I talked about early this week.

If you look at the original announcement three mounts are mentioned, Reins of the Raven Lord, Swift White Hawkstrider, and the Deathcharger's Reins.

What I find is that other mounts have been added to the bag which is fine. Mounts like Reins of the Blue Drake, Reins of the Blue Proto-Drake, Reins of the Green Proto-Drake, Reins of the White Polar Bear. These come from a mix Random drop bags, and Wrath dungeons.

I like the fact they added Green Proto-Drake, and Reins of the White Polar Bear because it means not having to go to Northred to do daily quests to get them or buy new eggs. And if they are going to keep the original drop rate to the bags the more stuff they put into the bags the more likely you are to get something of value out of them.

What I find really odd is why did they take Deathcharger's Reins out. I have no issue with this per say. There is already quite a lot you can get in the bag and if its choice between flying mounts or land mounts I'm always going to take the flying mount. But still odd they would promote one of the most hunted mounts going back to the Original Warcraft. Then leave it out, heck whats more no one is talking about it. Oh well I really want the Reins of the Blue Proto-Drake, but that would also require me to pay for Warcraft again as well. So yeah that is most likely not happening to 4.2.

The Shattering of the Barrens

I mentioned yesterday the Southern Barrens in my article about faction bias. While much of the in game information goes into what is going on right now in the Barrens Something I find of interest in this eye witness account of the Shattering of the Barrens.

I was in the Southern Barrens when the world broke.

"Azeroth wrenched. Jagged maws of stone and dirt opened all around me. I turned in horror to see that my elder brother, Kor'ak, was falling into one of the gaping fissures. With all my might I struggled to pull him free, but in that moment, when he needed me most... I failed him. The screaming rift snapped shut, rending Kor'ak flesh and bone with a sickening ease. Terrified, I fled to the Great Lift, only to watch as the sea raged through the red canyons of Thousand Needles, consuming all in its path. I then went north until I came upon a fiery chasm that sliced the Barrens in two as if some monstrous demon had cleaved Azeroth's belly with his tainted axe. Despite the chaos, I could not shake Kor'ak's death from my mind...A brother...friend...proud orcish warrior...crushed like an insect under the foot of a traveler.

Many suns have passed since that day, but I fear that the whole of Kalimdor, and even the distant Eastern Kingdoms, will never be the same again. More and more I hear tales of how these lands have suffered from the upheaval's wrath: fire spewing from the heart of Ashenvale, flooding in the formerly parched lands of Tanaris and Durotar, and coastal settlements in Darkshore and the Wetlands claimed by hungry seas. Azeroth is changing, but I must endure to see that Kor'ak received an honorable burial. If it takes a lifetime to find my brother's broken body entombed beneath the scarred earth...then to be it.

-Tharken Bloodspike of the Crossroads"
That is taken from page 38 in the The Art of Cataclysm book which came with the Collector edition of the game.

What I enjoy about this its reflective is like a letter that would be send to tell others of what had happened. So much was lost on that day the world changed, and all to often we forget the pain that comes with that change and what was lost. Sure this game isn't real but the tornadoes, earthquakes, and all other hazards changes people lives forever be thankful they don't happen on world wide scales, but here in this mirror of our world which all fiction is to one degree or other we see the pain that comes these events, and this makes the war that followed all the more tragic.


Monday, May 2, 2011

For the Lore: Faction bias

This weekend's column in WoW Insider: Know your Lore was on the Southern Barrens. Anyone that has played through the Southern Barrens knows its a highly polarizing area. Now, one of my weaknesses in life is that I read internet comments, where as most know people say really stupid things, but they are also unfiltered and often give sense of temperature of the room if you're willing to look at the comments for more than than just the highly biased, poorly written, hate filled bile which is it. There is also the amen chorus, the love you thus love your work comments, and so on. It's amazing how much the comments on WoW Insider or MMO champion look like those at places like Politico.

The thing of it is I have no issue with bias when it's out in the open, and you can tell if writers are honestly putting that bias aside or they are covering it up, lest it keep working its way into their work. Newspapers used to be little more than highly biased pulp which supported one group or another. The idea that anyone is without bias is silly; at best, we all have biases whether we want to admit them or not. The key is, do they get in the way? Personally I find I have a strong Horde bias. That is not to say I don't like the Alliance. There are parts I find interesting like dwarfs, Alterac, and Kul Tiras. I've been writing about trolls these last few days because it's timely and I like trolls.

Bias also normally is a statement of passion. I write about things I care about. Yes, the people at WoW Insider are paid, but it's my hope they have passion for the things they are writing about otherwise the quality suffers.