Plague Proto-Drake and Black Proto-Drake Rewards Removal

Players who wish to get the Plagued Proto-Drake or the Black Proto-Drake rewards from the Glory of the Raider or Heroic: Glory of the Raider Achievements—you have a last chance to completing these achievements.

Rally your guildmates or get a very efficient PUG from known guilds to work together exclusively to get this done. Otherwise, you won’t see these rewards anymore. Ghostcrawler just announced these rewards will be removed from the game once Patch 3.1 goes live.

Blizzard Quote:
Ghostcrawler: Upcoming Glory of the Raider Reward Changes When 3.1 goes live, the rewards for

PTR 3.1 Equipment Manager Interface

The Gear Management System is the most awesome feature in the game besides the Dual Talent Spec.  Very simple and user-friendly. Once you set up your gear choices you can change gear with a single click. However, you need to switch gear manually. It won’t automatically change when you switch specs. Not a big deal.

The first thing you should do is to press (ESCAPE) to open the menu window.  Go to Interface, select Controls and look at the bottom to click the following checkbox: “Use Equipment Manager—Enables access to the Equipment Manager interface from the character frame.”

Close the Menu. Now press (C) to open the Character window.  At the top-right, above the glove slot you will now see a new icon that recembles a chestplate. When you click the chestplate icon, the Equipment Manager window pops up to the top-right of the Character window.

It contains 10 slots. Don’t attempt to drag items in there. That’s not its function. Instead, make sure you have all the gear worn you wish for your primary talent spec.  All you need to do is to click the red save button within the Equipment Manager window. You will get familiar from there forward—it looks exactly like the Macro window buttons.  After pressing the save button, you will see a textbox to type the title of your macro.  In my case, I named it Holy Spec.

Then you select any of the macro buttons.  Press ok. Voila.  That button will automatically choose all the gear you had at the moment you saved.  Now make sure to pick all the gear you want to use for your second spec.  Once you have all the gear, trinkets, rings, cloak, weapons and neck that you would use for your secondary talent spec—click the breastplate icon at the top-right to open the Equipment Manager. Now repeat the process by pressing the save button. All the new gear you have is automatically saved.  A new textbox shows up. Name it whatever secondary talent spec you chose. In my case, I named it Retribution. I selected a button for it.

Now you have two out of ten Equipment sets.  Play around by pressing the first button. I automatically wore all the gear I saved for my Holy spec.  A sound is played to alert you of the gear change. Press the second button, and all your gear changes to the second spec. In my case, all the retribution gear.  The video is only a test to show you the mechanics of how it works. I don’t have a retribution set, besides the Scourge Invasion set. Hope you like this new feature the developers have no doubt worked on and polished for a long time.. Watch the video below.

PTR 3.1 New LFG Tool Features

A very nice touch for those who complained about the LFG tool. This time the Blizzard developers have added new criterias to ease up the search of groups. The new option checkboxes ask you to specify if you are a:

  • Healer
  • DPS
  • Tank
  • Leader

Pretty options if you ask me. Let’s see how it evolves during the testing process. All fans are welcome to use the LFG feature instead of channels. This will help test and debug before it reaches the live realms.

Unless I have been living under a rock the past few patches, I noticed something I had not seen before, and which the developers had mentioned at some point they would add to the game. You can now access the battlegrounds from anywhere by pressing (H) key. That will open up the PvP window. Press the Battlegrounds tab. You will see the same window you usually do when talking to a Battlemaster. From there you can select Alterac Valley, Warsong Gulch, Arathi Basin, Eye of the Storm, and Strand of the Ancients.

 

PTR 3.1 LFG Tool New Feature

A very nice touch for those who complained about the LFG tool. This time the Blizzard developers have added new criterias to ease up the search of groups. The new option checkboxes ask you to specify if you are a:

  • Healer
  • DPS
  • Tank
  • Leader

Pretty options if you ask me. Let’s see how it evolves during the testing process. All fans are welcome to use the LFG feature instead of channels. This will help test and debug before it reaches the live realms.

 

PTR 3.1 Dual Talent Spec Feature

For those who haven’t had access to the PTR 3.1, we got screenshots and video of the Dual Talent Spec Feature. In order to benefit from this feature, you must go to a class trainer.  The trainer now has a new option below the unlearn talents option.  Select the Dual-spec option. You will be prompted to pay 1000 gold to learn this new feature.

   

Once done, you will automatically gain a new achievement. Open your Talent Tree window by pressing (N).  Nothing changes within the Talent Tree Window, except now you see a second button tab on the top-right of the window. The first button is your primary talent spec. The button below is your secondary talent spec.  Each has its own set of three talent trees and a glyph window.  Each glyph window is associated with any of the specs. So you can have two sets of glyphs.

   

 

Assign points to your talent trees for your primary spec.  Press the second button at the top-right to access the secondary spec window. You need to activate it before you can assign points.  Press the large red button at the top titled: “Activate these talents”. You will see a spellbar casting “Activate Secondary Spec”. Your mana pool will be completely depleted. Now you can set talent points to any of your secondary spec’s three talent trees.

Watch the video below to see all these steps and how it works.

PTR 3.1 Patch Notes

I just logged in into Broxigar PvE server to bring you coverage, screenshots and video of PTR 3.1—so stay tuned for any updates. In the meantime, below are the full patch notes. Remember, Blizzard hasn’t added all the Class changes to this patch. It will be added in upcoming PTR patches.

The latest test realm patch notes can always be found at
http://www.worldofwarcraft.com/patchnotes/test-realm-patchnotes.html

The latest patch notes can always be found at
http://www.worldofwarcraft.com/patchnotes/

General

  • All Ground Mounts may now swim without dismounting the rider. Flying
      Mounts still may NOT, and will dismount the rider upon entering water.

  • Ulduar is now available for limited testing.  Please visit the Public
      Test Realms for more details.
      http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/board.html?forumId=11572

  • Players at maximum level will now be able to visit their trainer to
      pay a one-time fee and access the dual talent spec feature.

  • A new Gear Manager feature has been added.  Players will now be able
      to save gear sets for easy gear switching.

PvP

  • Battlegrounds
      Players will now be able to queue for battlegrounds from any
      location.
      Seaforium Barrels can be looted while mounted, can now be seen from
      anywhere in the zone, and can now be found at the Central Graveyard.
      Teleporters can now be used while mounted and can now be seen from
      anywhere in the zone

Read the Class Changes below …

Classes: General

  • Hysteria, Tricks of the Trade, Enrage, Wrecking Crew, Death Wish,
      Arcane Power, Owlkin Frenzy, Beast Within, Avenging Wrath and
      Hysteria damage bonuses no longer stack together.

Death Knights

PTR 3.1 Installer Available

Around 3am EST, waves of fans started downloading the PTR 3.1 You can download it at the following link once you have logged in to your WoW Account. First, you needed to download the old PTR designated:

WoW-3.0.1.8874-PTR-US-Installer-downloader (old PTR installer)

Once you installed it, you would be prompted to download an updated Launcher. That’s when you actually download the PTR 3.1 which takes an approximate download time of 30 minutes on DSL/Cable.

PTR 3.1 US Character Copy Available

PTR 3.1 Character copy is available on US Realms with a queue downed to 4 days. Seems to be available randomly depending on how many people are copying their characters at certain intervals.  I have been checking every few minutes, reloading the page.

I was able to copy two characters on to Broxigar PvE server. The PvP server is named Anasterian. I will report an update once the installer is available. It is not at the moment. Keep trying to copy your character every now and then. Knowing how many people wishes to join, queues will be full often.

 

Review: World of Warcraft: Arthas, Rise of the Lich King

I finished reading the book and I am ready to tell fans my experience without spoiling much. At least nothing you haven’t already seen in Warcraft III. For those catching up, we got some World of Warcraft: Arthas, Rise of the Lich King galleys to giveaway to fans—courtesy of Simon & Schuster and Blizzard Entertainment.  A galley is an uncorrected proof (a special advance reader’s edition not-for-sale).  The advantage is that you get to read the book nearly two months ahead before they hit bookstores.

On to the review, Christie Golden has done an excellent work researching many previous books by other authors, and playing Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos and its Frozen Throne expansion. We get to see Arthas at age 9 and how his life and experiences shaped up what one day would be a Prince sacrificing everything zealously for his people, to be able to claim Frostmourne in order to defeat the dreadlord Mal’Ganis.

We see Sir Anduin Lothar, Khadgar and a young Prince Varian Wrynn arriving at Capital City to inform about the fall of Stormwind—an exact scene from World of Warcraft: Tides of Darkness by Aaron Rosenberg—but from the point of view of a young Arthas hiding on the upper gallery to witness the scene. We see how Varian and Arthas play together, except Varian had been trained since childhood, while Arthas was overprotected from such trainings by his father.

The love triangle between Kael, Jaina and Arthas is explored in-depth throughout two chapters and a half. Christie works her usual magic here developing feelings and passions. We get to briefly see many characters of the Warcraft universe, and various scenes from the point of view of Arthas.  We get to see that scene in Day of the Dragon when Lord Daval Prestor (Deathwing) was chosen to marry Calia Menethil when she was age 16. A scene from World of Warcraft: Beyond the Dark Portal when Muradin walks in into Capital City to find a young Arthas playing make-believe attacking illusory orcs with his training sword. This leads Muradin to volunteer to train him.

Something I found quite refreshing was the use of World of Warcraft festivities throughout the length of the book. Noblegarden, the Midsummer Fire Festival, the Hallow’s End, and the Feast of Winter Veil to develop the relationship between Arthas and Jaina together as years go by. As some people know, Christie Golden has been a World of Warcraft player for the past years on a RP-server. She knows the game with a passion.

Arthas visiting Durnholde Keep on behalf of his father, as he starts taking bigger responsibilities as a Prince. Meeting Thrall fight other adversaries at the Gladiator Arena. His induction ceremony at the Cathedral of Light where he was ordained a Paladin of the Order of the Silver Hand.

You will love how accurately Christie depicts the scenes from Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos word by word as things are said either in the mission briefings or the in-game engine’s cinematics—fleshing out those parts in between to connect with the next campaign maps.

For example, remember that scene where Arthas awaits Jaina? The soldier asks Arthas if they should help Jaina. Enter Jaina …. fleeing from Ogres. She turns around and handles them on her own with the help of a Water Elemental.

That scene when they find the plagued silo, find two elven priests and even a dwarven mortar team.  Then arrive to the granary and find an Abomination.

Jaina: “By the Light—- that creature looks like it was sewn together from different corpses!”

Arthas: “Let’s study it after we kill it, okay?”

The scene where Arthas calls Uther a traitor and disbands the Order of the Silver Hand. The Cunning of Stratholme. The search for Frostmourne and the apparent demise of Mal’Ganis. Walk the halls toward the throne room of Lordaeron Capital City. Find out what went through Arthas’ mind when touching the rose petals with his gloved fingers.

For continuity’s sake, we see Jaina Proudmoore and Magna Aegwynn (Medivh’s mother) in Theramore (from the pages of World of Warcraft: Cycle of Hatred by Keith R.A. DeCandido and the current DC comics / Wildstorm World of Warcraft Comic Book). As well as various scenes from the Wrath of the Lich King expansion with brief cameos of Tuskarr and Taunka races.

The book goes as far as Warcraft III: Frozen Throne’s Undead Campaign from start to end. There is only two major omissions that I have to acknowledge may have been due to space just 25 pages away from the last page. The lapse between fighting Sapphiron to entering the gates to the Inner Kingdom was completely skipped. And the major turn off is that the Forgotten One is not even mentioned as even happening.

The epilogue presents what happened these past four years with Arthas. He is been dreaming. And he awakes leading to the invasion to Orgrimmar and Stormwind and the events of Wrath of the Lich King. But what happened during those four years of dreaming? There has been an inner conflict within Arthas the Lich King’s head … between three minds striving for control: Ner’zhul, Arthas, and … who we are familiar with as Matthias Lehner (the ghost child). The end is shocking to say the least. And unexpected.

Except for those two events omitted, the book is accurate and loyal to the events of Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos and Warcraft III: Frozen Throne. And offers much more with extra spice from Christie Golden. I can only say one thing about this. I (beep) love this book !!!

This book is an overdosed cocktail of lore and continuity that will numb your senses.

If you are a die-hard WarCraft lore fan you can’t miss this book.  If you are a World of Warcraft player who didn’t get to play previous Warcraft games—this book will be your best chance at catching up with Arthas’ past pre-Third War and it covers both: Warcraft III and its expansion accurately. Pre-Order World of Warcraft: Arthas, Rise of the Lich King … on sale: April 21, 2009.

Watch our interview with Blizzard’s Chris Metzen and Micky Neilson at the 2009 New York Comic Con for details of World of Warcraft: Arthas and the World of Warcraft: Stormrage book.

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