PTR 8.1 Island Expeditions: Jorundall

The Battle for Azeroth PTR 8.1 (28366) introduced testing of the new Island Expeditions map: Jorundall. The isle features a Vrykul village and Storm Drakes. I also encountered Taunka & Tauren, Gorillas, Hydras, Crocs, a Pandaria elemental boss, Ice elementals, Pirates and Tol’vir invasions.

The second run, I encountered an injured Drogbar named Brunold who started a quest to administer a cure for him.

BUG: The current build has a substantial bug. When you get near a steam vent of Azerite, your graphics card goes bonkers with 2FPS. Sometimes you crash or freeze. In that case, hold down ALT+CTRL+DELETE to force quit WoW. Launch the game again. Sometimes you get spawned in the Island Expedition. Now move away toward the area you came from. That will default you back to normal FPS. Avoid that area, and move to another destination.

Here are some screenshots I was able to take when my two teammates crashed and didn’t return. Gave me a chance to explore solo.

BlizzCon 2018: Support Blizzplanet’s Panel Transcripts. Hear my story

Greetings to all our Blizzard games fans visitors.

It is difficult for me to write these words, and set aside shyness and sort-of pride; but I need to share the story. Pride in the sense that we shy people tend to be protective of ourselves, and build a barrier to not be affected emotionally by bullies and trolls. I do get those from time to time, still, but I cope.

Blizzplanet is nigh 16 years old, thanks to Blizzard Entertainment and to the community. I was there as the website was born, and ever since.

Those who have visited Blizzplanet for many years are aware of some of the thoughest moments of my life. From 2010-2015, I ended up living in a shelter for the homeless. I had no income other than food basics (probably under $100 a month). I have been disabled physically since 2001, but hadn’t gone to doctors to properly diagnose it.

Without going into details about my disability, a simple trip to the city or to visit my sister, knocks me in bed for a week or two unable to walk during that period. I battle through pain and poor sleep due to this. Legs, muscles, and body in general need to recover and heal to the best possible, which isn’t much, after a trip. Summers increase the pain, as my body doesn’t know how to sweat to cool down. Just so you know, simple tasks as going to the supermarket or anywhere within 1-10 miles I do on a Mobility scooter. I’m 47.

It was around early 2013 that through a couple of doctors I was diagnosed. With their evaluation and tests, I was able to apply for disability. With the help of a legal aid, I got approved. This helped me eventually to fill the requirements to get low-cost housing assistance, and finally move out from the shelter into an apartment.

I have been a Blizzard fan and gamer since my first Apple Mac G4 in 1999, and later an HP computer in 2003 where I played Warcraft III and World of Warcraft beta. I know what it is to be in the low end after suffering through those 5 years as a homeless. I know what it feels to be a disabled person. And to not have a steady income to afford things beyond food or my favorite games.

That’s what made me decide to do something unique here at Blizzplanet these many years ago since 2013 — when I was still living in the shelter.

That was the first time I started transcribing the BlizzCon panels. I have done so in 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and now in 2018.

From a humbled position where I have gone through so much, I know some of you. You… the one who is maybe underage and obviously go to school, maybe don’t have a job yet. Or maybe you do but still can’t afford to buy a BlizzCon Virtual Ticket, far less a normal ticket, flight and hotel.

I know You… the one who probably is disabled. Whether hearing impaired, or otherwise. Sometimes you might not be able to afford the Virtual Ticket. Even if you do, most of the time the camera is not showing the person speaking. You can’t read lips that are not shown onscreen (especially when the screenshot slides are shown full screen, or the audience is shown). During Q&As, the fan asking a question is not always shown onscreen. So a hearing impaired fan can’t read lips most of the time to learn what’s been revealed or discussed during the panel. Or simply, you can’t afford the Virtual Ticket to begin with.

A couple years ago, in 2016, as I posted several of the BlizzCon panel transcripts, and got a lot of visibility in the internetz things changed drastically. I don’t know how it started, but fans started to share my transcripts on Reddit. All heck broke loose. The servers got hammered hard knocking Blizzplanet offline for several days. Back then, I paid $15 a month from the ads. The website self paid itself without me.

When Reddit, MMO-Champion, WoWhead and WoWpedia started opening the flood gates of traffic for fans to read the transcripts, I had to take a decision that affected and hit my pocket directly. Upgrading to a better server plan to prevent the site from going under. Blizzplanet costs $85 a month nowadays. The transcripts take me too long all by myself, so I am now outsourcing to professional transcribers who charge $5-10 per 15-20 minutes of transcription.

So you see, when I put my pride aside and ask our visitors via Twitter to support Blizzplanet via Patreon or PayPal, I am not a greedy fella. Most of it goes to these transcripts each year, or the website hosting. Sometimes I get a hit to the pocket when there is not enough from the ads or the YouTube partnership program.

These BlizzCon panel transcripts are useful to those who can’t afford traveling to BlizzCon, or the Virtual Ticket — whether you are underage, unemployed, or even homeless. The disabled, including the hearing impaired. It is useful to all fans who attended or watched the livestream as well.

The Virtual Ticket VODs are there for a limited period of time, and then they are gone.

The transcripts help so many fans. These are also shared in forums and social media to estimulate discussion. These are shared by fellow writers as a resource of information to publish articles based on straight quotes from the developers, or even an archive of information for those who love to contribute in WoWpedia.

Special thanks to those who currently or in the past have supported us, and to those who share our transcripts and interviews throughout the community.

This year, I already posted the World of Warcraft: What’s Next panel; and the Diablo Immortal panel transcript.

For $37 — Velma, a professional transcriber, is right now working on the Heroes of the Storm: What’s Next panel transcript and the Warcraft III: Reforged panel. Another transcriber should be almost done with the Hearthstone: What’s Next panel for $12.

Once they deliver the transcripts, I have to proofread. While they are professionals, they aren’t infallible to video gaming terms, names, and locations they never heard before. So I spend hours reading and listening to the panel VODs to correct the typos, format, and add images as needed. I do that for free, for our community. However, I can’t cost everything on my own. Not all panels in past years have gotten transcribed for a reason, but I try to cover the basic ones.

Please, support Blizzplanet via Patreon: http://www.patreon.com/blizzplanet — or one-time donation via Paypal: http://www.paypal.me/blizzplanet

Many thanks for your unconditional support over the years,

– Tom / Medievaldragon

 

BlizzCon 2018 World of Warcraft: What’s Next Panel Transcript

The World of Warcraft: What’s Next panel focuses on Patch 8.1 Tides of Vengeance, and Patch 8.1.5. New model/skins for the Worgen and Goblins. Kul Tiran and Zandalari Allied Races. Micro-Holidays, Timewalking: Warlords of Draenor. Portal Rooms in Orgrimmar and Stormwind. Profession Questlines. Brawler’s Guild new bosses, Transmog sets, and mounts.

Arathi Basin and Warsong Gulch have been remastered with updated graphics ( buildings, trees, etc). Patch 8.2: Rise of Azshara will introduce Nazjatar, new Story quests, new Allies, and replayable content. Azshara’s Eternal Palace (Raid) with 8 bosses, and an underwater Boss. Culminating with Queen Azshara herself as the last boss of the 8.2 Raid.

In addition, a new 8-boss Mythic dungeon in Tiragarde Sound known as the Mechagon Megadungeon, the ancient lost city of the mechagnomes.

Among the speakers were:

  • Ion Hazzikostas (game director)
  • Ryan Shwayder (senior game designer)
  • Jeremy Feasel (senior game designer)

BlizzCon 2018 World of Warcraft panel transcript

BlizzCon 2018 Interview: Warcraft III: Reforged

Blizzplanet members Danny Perschononok and Handclaw had the opportunity to interview Robert Bridenbecker (VP of Technology and Strategy Planning) to discuss details of Warcraft III: Reforged. The interview focuses on the engine overhaul and assets, and Battle.net Launcher transition, as well as the World Editor and mapmaking’s capabilities side.

 

BlizzCon 2018: World of Warcraft Classic Hands-On Review

Those with a BlizzCon Ticket or Virtual Ticket have access to download and play the World of Warcraft Classic demo at home or at the computer stations. Only Westfall is available for testing at the moment.

When creating a new character, you are automatically level 15 in the demo. The character creation screen looks exactly like it did back in 2004; and you can only obtain the old models.

After login, my character spawned at Sentinel Hill. I gathered two quests, and the first thing I noticed with dread is that the quest tracker isn’t interactive, and you can only track what you shift-click in the Quest Log. Opening the map doesn’t show any markers to inform you where the quest objectives are located at.

world of warcraft classic

Patch 8.1 Incursions: Blood Elves Harnessed Thunder King Technology

Patch 8.1 Incursions are revealing the Evolution of the Alliance and the Horde in ways Blizzard hasn’t expanded upon before. In Mists of Pandaria, you might remember The Throne of Thunder. The Horde Blood Elves have taken serious their namesake. They have harnessed the Dark Animus technology to… siphon G’huun/Torga blood?

Playing as Alliance, the Incursion world quest Cleansing Tide have you assist the Kul Tiran Tidesages. You transform into a Tidesurger to erradicate the Blood Elves invading Torga’s Rest in Nazmir. The objective is to slay 100 Sin’dorei forces.

BlizzCon Virtual Ticket can be watched via BlizzCon TV App and Battle.net Launcher

Blizzard Entertainment issued a press release to announce new ways to watch the BlizzCon Virtual Ticket livestream. You can watch the event through the BlizzCon TV app for mobile devices, or on your PC via the Battle.net Launcher.

A bigger spectacle for more spectators–Blizzard adds more entertainment with content in more languages, interactive features and, for the first time, a game demo debuting at the show that’s accessible by viewers around the world

BlizzCon 2018 is a celebration of Blizzard’s game community, with announcements, new game demos, panels, contests, and world-class esports competitions; this year’s closing festivities features three popularmusical acts

IRVINE, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Oct. 25, 2018– Blizzard Entertainment today released major details about BlizzCon® 2018, its epic celebration of gaming and community taking place next week. On Friday, November 2, and Saturday, November 3, an expected 40,000+ people, and millions more tuning in online from around the world, will come together to see what has become a spectacle of video game culture. Every BlizzCon is an epic moment in Blizzard history, and this one promises to be another one to remember—from announcements at the opening ceremony to the dozens of stage events, community activities, and esports tournaments taking place across more than 1 million square feet at the Anaheim Convention Center in California.

BlizzCon 2018 is sold out, with record attendance expected this year, but Blizzard wants to make sure as many people as possible from around the world can be part of the show. This year, Blizzard is adding to its slate of free livestreams, which include the show’s opening ceremony and all esports tournaments. Last year, over 10 million viewers from more than 180 countries tuned in to BlizzCon.

Blizzard is also enhancing the BlizzCon Virtual Ticket with more features and ways to be part of the show. The BlizzCon Virtual Ticket is a paid service providing the deepest access available to live content, with access to events from every major stage and field reports from the BlizzCon show floor. It includes the same in-game virtual item bonuses for Blizzard franchises that show attendees receive and comes with access to dozens of videos on demand (VODs) featuring original programming. As a first in Blizzard’s history, this year’s Virtual Ticket also brings home one of the demos being debuted at the show, with the World of Warcraft® Classic demo available to players around the world around the same time it goes live on the show floor.

“BlizzCon is simply the best part of the year for Blizzard and our player community, as we come together for an epic celebration of games and gamer culture,” said Saralyn Smith, executive producer of BlizzCon at Blizzard Entertainment. “This is a welcoming home for our global community. We co-create the show with our players, and we want to involve as much of our community as possible in forming the next epic moments that become Blizzard history.”

Never Miss a Moment

BlizzCon’s biggest news and announcements begin with the opening ceremony at 11:00 a.m. PDT on Friday, November 2. Like last year, online viewers can tune in for free to see the pre-show and opening ceremony on the BlizzCon All-Access Channel starting at 10:30 a.m. This year, there are more ways to catch BlizzCon live. Livestreams are available via BlizzCon.com and the BlizzCon mobile app for Android and iOS. For the first time, viewers can watch livestreams using the BlizzCon TV app and the Blizzard Battle.net® desktop app, and they can cast to their favorite devices using Google Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, and Airplay. They can also watch in more languages than ever, with content available in English, Spanish, German, Korean, French, Chinese, Russian, and Portuguese.

For the first time, the BlizzCon All-Access Channel is airing two additional free livestream previews, from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. PDT on Friday, and again from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. PDT on Saturday. To access the show programming available during these times, check out the BlizzCon 2018 Schedule.

Along with the opening ceremony and All-Access Channel previews, all esports programming at BlizzCon is livestreamed for free.

Show Events and Closing Festivities

BlizzCon spans nearly every part of the Anaheim Convention Center (with more onsite broadcast equipment than many major league sports events). Blizzard is again featuring a multi-stage opening ceremony that will be simulcast throughout the convention center. Panels and presentations featuring developers and special guests—and plenty of memorable moments—take place both days of the show across three stages: Mythic Stage, located in Hall D, and the Epic and Legendary Stages, both located in North Hall Level 2.

BlizzCon has traditionally ended with a closing headline band. BlizzCon 2018 is transforming that tradition into a closing music festival featuring three distinct entertainment experiences: the iconic American rock band Train, violinist and performance artist Lindsey Stirling, and DJ and popular actor Kristian Nairn. All three concerts will be streamed live in HD to online viewers via the Virtual Ticket.

Community Night returns with the legendary Costume Contest, Talent Contest, Movie Contest, and Art Contest. Featuring popular VO actors Darin De Paul as host and Matthew Mercer joining the judge’s panel, Blizzard’s biggest annual community stage show starts at 7:00 p.m. PDT on Friday, November 2, and is available to online viewers via the Virtual Ticket.

BlizzCon 2018 is also the site for Blizzard esports, gathering elite players from around the world to make history in the Overwatch® World Cup Finals, Hearthstone® Global Games Finals, StarCraft® II WCS Global Finals, World of Warcraft Arena World Championship Global Finals, World of Warcraft Mythic Dungeon Invitational All-Stars, and Heroes of the Storm® Global Championship Finals.

Other show highlights include:

  • Hands-on Gaming—Once the news is out at the opening ceremony, attendees can enjoy hands-on demos featuring new and just-announced content for our games and franchises.
  • BlizzCon Gear Store—Every BlizzCon brings exclusive Blizzard gear that’s available onsite at the show and online through the Blizzard Gear Store.
  • Inclusion Nexus—Blizzard’s diversity and inclusion (D&I) space returns, located on Level 2 above Hall A, featuring special activities, guest speakers and representatives from Blizzard’s Women’s Advisory Council, LGBTQ Council, and Veterans Group.

For a full breakdown of BlizzCon 2018 activities, programming schedule, and other details about the show, check out our BlizzCon guide or visit www.blizzcon.com.

BlizzCon 2018 Sponsors

BlizzCon is made possible in part by the generosity of our partners, who help provide equipment and other support for the show. This year’s partners include Cisco,Intel, and Samsung SSD, along with the following sponsors who will be hosting various activities at the show:

  • CORSAIR—Check out a custom PC, test your luck for prizes at the CORSAIR Claw machine, and choose your side in the CORSAIR World of Warcraft photo booth.
  • Facebook—Watch participating livestreams on Facebook for a chance to earn special In-Stream Rewards. Learn more: blizz.ly/BC18FBRewards.
  • Nintendo Switch— Join the Diablo III: Eternal Collection development team live on the show floor at the Horadric Retreat, a great place to relax and run Rifts with friends.
  • NVIDIA—Enter to win prizes including the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, hop into a photobooth with special guests, and obtain an exclusive collectible patch.
  • NZXT—Drop by the NZXT booth where experts can answer your questions about building gaming PCs and take a spin on the NZXT prize wheel for a chance to win a BLD gaming PC.
  • Republic of Gamers—Enter to win amazing prizes and demo the latest hardware from ROG including the cutting-edge new ROG Phone and a variety of powerful gaming hardware.
  • T-Mobile—Vote for the Overwatch World Cup MVP on Twitter using #TMobileMVP and your choice’s BattleTag™, take a photo with the MVP trophy, create your own custom poster at the Un-carrier Lounge, and stay connected throughout BlizzCon with complimentary Wi-Fi courtesy of T-Mobile.

Battle for Azeroth PTR 28202

Blizzard Entertainment deployed the Battle for Azeroth PTR 8.1 build 28202 today in the afternoon. The patch was 978MB+ in size. WoWHead has a bulk of new text strings composed of new Achievements, Professions, and Class changes.

What’s New in this build?

Zuldazar Incursion World quests and probably another in Kul Tiras. Before this new patch, testers could only complete Tiragarde Sound, Stormsong Valley, and Vol’dun.

 

These are some of the Horde incursion world quests in Zuldazar. Follow the links below to watch the videos:

| Zuldazar
1. Shores of Zuldazar (Complete 4 Incursion WQ)6. They Love Iron
2. Dinohunter Wildbeard7. Portal Keeper Ramuul
3. Crate n' Barrel8. Receding Treeline
4. Get on the Payload
5. Short for an Orc

 

These are from the Alliance incursion in Zuldazar:

| Zuldazar
1. Ritual Rampage (Complete 4 Incursion WQ)6. Dino Time!
2. Crater n' Barrel
3. No Bridge Too Dire
4. Scout Captain Grizzleknob
5. Gravity Matters

 

I can’t say this is common, but in this new build as I prepared to engage some of the incursions, I saw a star moving on the map. I went to it, and it was a raptor rare elite named N’Chala the Egg Thief, which dropped a pet named Dasher. Seems Blizzard has heard feedback and marking special targets not only in the mini-map, but straight in the main map as well.

 

I am working on recording the Zuldazar Incursions. I’ll scout for more content. Stay tuned.

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