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About Ptoleman

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  • Birthday 08/18/88

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  • Character Name Valsorn
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  • Realm Whisperwind
  • Realm Location United States
  • Guild Something Wicked
  • Guild URL www.somethingwickedguild.com
  1. Veteran Adventures Guide

    Basic Adventure Guide. War of the Wilds (WotW) This instance is no longer broken (finally). All the objectives seen to work and populate without bugs. The concept is that of a mini-MOBA. Your objective is to destroy the totem at the other end of the map. To do this, you have 13-14 totems you can capture to enhance and grow the mobs at your base. The more totems you have, the more of your mobs you get. Then there are the shrines in the north, middle, and south of the map. These are guarded by mini-bosses with about 1.2 million HP and simple abilities, but capturing a shrine greatly enhances the power of your mobs.  Then there are PVP mobs, i.e., faux player characters with lots of health, crazy speed, and very loose aggro tables. They're generally easy to handle on their own, but a huge pain nonetheless. They have very simplistic AI: if they see you, they tend to hang back and try to summon their other PVP mobs. When they engage you, they pretty much bounce from player to player until one of them gets low, at which point they try to burst you down. CC/interrupts make them behave. The other mechanic with the PVP mobs is that you have to maintain a certain kill-death ratio to get medals. From what I've seen, you have to maintain at least a 5-kill lead on them. You run into them many times during the match, so as long as you don't die, this is easy to accomplish. Tied to this is the instance's "level" mechanic which definitely goes up when you are involved in a PVP mob's death (especially if you get the killing blow) and randomly goes up for accomplishing other things. You need to be at least Level 1 to get Silver, I believe. To win the instance itself, all you have to do is keep capturing totems, ignoring all other objectives. The established route on the map is to capture the first node in front of your base, then sweep north really quickly to grab that totem nearby, then head due south and capture all the totems there, then head west and make a loop to the center of the map. If you do this, eventually you'll run into the PVP mobs and probably a large pack of the enemy minions. Most of the time the PVP mobs are scattered around the map; it's rare you fight all 5 at the same time. Regardless, deal with the PVP mobs and the minions and you can push the match into the enemy base and win (often with incredible amounts of framerate lag due to the city-mob of your own minions that accompanies you.) The instance is ultimately simple--if all you care about is finishing. The medal objectives are dumb. At a certain point in time in the match, you'll be given a secondary objective by an NPC you'll soon grow to hate. There are two of these objectives total; you have to complete one to get silver and both of them to get gold. Therefore, you have to cap enough totems to keep your base from being overrun, then sit on your butt and wait for the game to let you "do better." These seem to take about 5-10 minutes to populate and take any number of forms: -Kill a particular PVP mob. This will be marked on your map. You have 90 seconds to do this. It's annoying, yes. -Kill 3 PVP mobs. These are not marked on your map. -Capture a shrine. The most obnoxious. As I said before, the mini-bosses guarding the shrines have 1.2 million health. You have about 5 minutes to do this. Capturing the shrine before the objective is given to you will not count. -Capture 3 flags. This will not be your second objective ever. -Don't die. For 2 minutes. -Kill 20 moodies. Tl; DR:  Bronze: complete the instance, as far as I can tell. Silver: complete one secondary objective, maintain the proper kill-death ratio, and get everyone in your party to Level 1. Gold: all of the above + complete both secondary objectives. ----- The Malgrave Trail The longest, most exasperating escort quest ever. Prepare for 45-60 minutes of walking and wondering what just killed that caravan member. Malgrave Trail is the Oregon Trail ruined. You have 30 Caravan Members. 20 of them have to survive to get silver; all 30 have to survive to get gold (because shut up). You have three resources: food, water, and feed. Food and water keep your caravan from building up Fatigue, which is a separate, global meter that builds up over time as the Caravan progresses. If you run out of Food and Water, the fatigue bar will fill up incredibly rapidly. Feed keeps the caravan moving; if you run out, it slows down drastically, expending more time and more food and water than you have to. You replenish resources by picking up items that spawn at fixed places in the world. You will want to have 2 of your DPS fanning out and finding resources consistently. If the fatigue bar reaches 100%, your caravan members will start dropping like flies: I think I counted one every 15-20 seconds. Regardless, it's bad. Don't let it happen, as it never should. You will get opportunities to camp along the way; camping restores your fatigue bar back to 0 eventually. Always take it. Use the time to forage the area, but have members stay near the caravan in case mobs spawn. When you break camp, you will "spook" animals in the immediate area, so just be alert and clear any wandering mobs around the caravan ahead of time.  While you are walking along, random things can happen to your caravan: -Chompacabras spawn directly under the caravan (usually near the first and second pack animals) and attack your caravan/eat your supplies. These merely need to be picked up immediately. They die in 2-3 hits. -Mobs will spawn very close to the caravan and directly attack your caravan members. These *will* 1-2 shot them, so that's why you must keep 1 DPS near the caravan at all times to aggro them without delay. None of the other mobs found on the way do any real damage, nor is there ever a dire need to DPS them down. There are 3 of these waves in this event. -A caravan member will go missing. Ignore the direction bar: it's bugged and useless. Rather, look for the speech bubble they throw out. This mechanic seems to simply teleport a caravan member to a fixed spot, not at random. You have a minute to find them or they will die. This doesn't happen too often, but you must always be prepared. -A random resource will fall off the caravan. Easiest of all these mechanics: the items appear right next to the caravan. Just click on them all to recover them. -Flies spawn around your pack animals and eat your food. You will find bug bombs along the way. When you find them and this random event happens, all you have to do is use your quest-item ability to cleanse the pack animals of the flies. I have noticed the telegraph for this is deceptive: every time you press it on the ground, it will recenter it on yourself before casting. Therefore, stand next to the pack animals to cleanse. As far as I can tell, only one person need pick up the grenades and the rest of the party will have them. There's no limit to how many you can cast. -Your caravan members get the flu. No, really. Exact same mechanic (and re-centering issue) as the flies, except you pick up medical grenades along the way. The bug bombs and medical grenades spawn in the same general area, so this should never be a problem. You spend the instance trekking across the desert going to various points. You have many choices, but I'm not going to go into detail for every one of them, as there's a particular path that's been found to be optimal. Zey posted it in the other thread:  Greenleaf Ridge Winged Fury Crest Sandy Hive Blisterbone Staging Grounds Uboshwa Village This route is quick, avoids major bosses or doubling back, gives you very good resources, and avoids many mechanics that can end up killing your caravan members. To ensure your caravan members survive, you have to keep mobs off of them. I can't say for certain, but it seems mob abilities only hit caravan members if they are cast directly on a targeted caravan member; if they aggro onto you, their resulting telegraphs will not hit the caravan members. Therefore, the tank needs to be ahead of the caravan picking up mobs. The two DPS foraging for supplies--which is less and less needed as you progress down this route--should DPS these down at a normal pace. Notes on the route: Greenleaf Ridge: this is a DPS check. You go there and find a bunch of friendly stemdragons sitting in the ground. You'll be next to a water well and there will be thumpers around you. Your caravan will pump water from the well, which will almost completely fill your water resource bar. Start the event, trigger as many thumpers as you can, and stay wary near the caravan. The stemdragons will freak out and spawn 2 at a time, often on opposite sides of the caravan. DPS need to break off and aggro these mobs so they don't target the caravan members. Then bring them back to the tank. The thumpers draw initial aggro off the stemdragons, so that's why you want to trigger them. However, the stemdragons will eventually kill the thumpers, so aggro is important. Overall: mob control. DPS the stemdragons down as you get them so you don't get overwhelmed. Avoid their simple telegraphs. Win.  Winged Fury Crest: you get here without much adventure. However, near the event itself there are two groups of Dreg mobs you MUST pick up before hand. They have a leap ability they will use from very far away to jump into the caravan and 1-2 shot people in it. Simple to deal with, but discovered through trial and error, really. The objective hear is to repair a transporter within a set time limit (I believe it's five minutes). It's a simple ratio puzzle whose solution is determined randomly at the start of the instance. There are three items in scrap piles that spawn around: fuel sources, converters, and focusers. Your caravan guide will give you speech bubbles telling you which mix of components you need. You have 3 tries to do this, and you need at least one of each component in the puzzle. In my experience, it is best to let one person handle this objective entirely. The rest of the group stays with the caravan, as mobs do spawn and try to kill members. Ironically, once you've finished this, the best idea is to not use the teleporter, but go on to Sandy Hive. In fact, you really don't have to worry about completing the teleporter quest at all. Sandy Hive: BEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEES. Actually, this event is awesome and easy. You get tons of food and feed off the mobs, and the mechanics don't really threaten the caravan. Your job is to kill 6 Torchers scattered around the area that are setting fire to bushes and enraging the Children of Oprah. Run around killing them and DPS'ing. Nothing threatens the caravan here. There are also some water spots you pick up with a douser around here. They're pretty easy to find, but typically not crucial by this point. By this point, your resources should be very full and take you the rest of the way there. Always get new supplies, but it's typically not as urgent as at the beginning of the instance. Blisterbone Staging Grounds: you get here after camping a second time, I believe. Along the way there are evil rose-flowers that shoot fire along the trail. You click on them to disable them. The fire telegraphs they cast will kill your caravan members almost instantly if they walk into it, but that should never ever happen. The actual event is very similar to Sandy Hive, sans insects, free cars, or resource smorgasbord. You run around clearing the camp of mobs while setting off explosives caches. Easy. Nothing threatens the caravan either here (see why we took this path?). Uboshwa Village: it's time to once again encounter your favorite almost-racist rabbit caricatures. Luckily, this route is also easy. You walk up to the village and a boss and his minions spawn. They come at you 2-3 at a time. DPS them down. Then you have a twin-boss encounter with big brutes who do basically nothing. Giant easy tank and spank. Win. Nothing threatens the caravan here too. If you managed to avoid any bugs or stupid things not working, you should get gold and two epics. Hooray.   Notes from Zey, another SW guildmate:  1) avoid picking up meat and cheese you find laying around. They give the npcs food poisoning. If you do pick them up then you'll notice the npcs start complaining about funny smelling food, and they get a stacking debuf. Each stack of food poisoning reduces hp by 1%. 2) when you get to greenleaf, if you are at all close to full on water then search around for more before starting the event. If you have full water then you auto skip the event.   3) if you get the teleporter working at winged fury then can go to rumbling fields. On the way to rumbling fields, players will set of mines, so you stay away from the caravan. The tank walks in front, two players on each side. The goal is to step on rumbling patches that make their way towards the caravan. If you miss any, they don't harm the caravan but they do steal food. This is basically a 5 minute stroll with no mobs, so no chance of losing npc hp. From there go to seaview (boss) and then uboshwa. This route was more pressed for resources, as it camps only one, but the caravan felt safer. I basically stayed with the caravan most of the time while the group ran far ahead and cleared.   Siege of Tempest Refuge Tempest Refuge is straightforward: protect the McGuffin Generator in the center of the map. If it goes down, you move over to Skywatch and try again. This should never happen, as defending said McGuffinator is very easy if you know what you're doing. If. There are three entrances to the place: north, west, and south. The McGuffinator is closest to the west entrance, so this is the obvious "center" I'll be referring to. Enemies come from each entrance. You have five allied mobs you can place at various flagged points across the map. As time goes on, you can promote them into different specialties: vanguard/tanky types, sniper/demolitionist, pyro/engineer, etc. It doesn't matter how you promote them, really, so long as you have at least one of each general type on the field. The more effective ones are the tanks/engineers, while the snipers are good because they buff your offensive stats.  The best way to use these minions of yours is to put them in the center near the McGuffinator, guarding the west entrance. Have at least one posted more to the north and the south so they can help distract mobs. All the minor mobs that come through prioritize players if you hit them and do very little damage. Drag them to the center and DPS them down. As in other instances, their telegraphs do not harm the McGuffinator unless the mobs directly cast it against the McGuffinator. If they target you and cast a telegraph, who cares. The other (really annoying) mechanic of this instance is morale. It's a bar that goes down with each wave little by little. It does nothing until about it drops to around 50, at which point your damage and healing will be reduced by 10% and your dash regeneration and such will be reduced heavily as well. As it goes down further, the debuff increases to 20% and eventually 30% at 0 Morale. Whereas before you could reset this meter simply by leaving the instance in some way (house recall, alt-F4, etc.), they fixed that. So you have to live with it. There are five waves of enemies, each mildly themed after something that doesn't seem to affect the content too much. Each wave has four sub-waves in which various things can happen. Each wave ends with a boss. Each of the following counts as a sub-wave: -Mines that fall from the sky. These blow up if you walk over them and do about 4-5k damage and knock you down. Very easy to set off safely while sprinting. You should set off as many as you can between sub-waves. -Artillery fire. Red Telegraphs. Dodge them. Yawn. -Mob spawns: infantry, rifleman, specialists, snipers, whatever. These biped magpies all come from the different entrances and will attempt to shoot the McGuffinator if not distracted by anything and everything that moves. Your job is to distract them, and it's easy. Just send one DPS to pick up the mobs at the north/south entrances and drag them to the center. Then they all die like the trillions of mobs you've already killed before. -Saboteurs. Chua idiots spawn near the McGuffinator and try to plant bombs on it that you have 10 seconds to disable. Disabling them takes 3-4 seconds. Apart from that, Saboteurs are just like the mobs mentioned above, so it's very easy to prevent them from ever planting the bombs ever. Just gather round the McGuffinator when this event happens. -Tanks. Yes, tanks. They spawn at one of the entrances at random and move toward the generator quickly. There are two types. One is a Hellfire tank that spawns fire (duh) and the other is an Assault tank knocks you back. Whatever: they have about 350k health and have to be DPS'd down or their AoE will start hitting the McGuffinator. Your anti-tank weapon here is snares and roots. Having at least one person specc'd into a reliable snare makes these a joke. Having two people with snares/roots is insurance against the next possible event: -Bunker Busters. These slow moving things are just like tanks, except they have close to a million health and move much slower. They do no damage and are also completely vulnerable to snares and roots. If they reach the McGuffinator, however, it's a one-shot. DPS'ing these is not an issue with snares and roots. HOWEVER, a tank and a buster can spawn in consecutive waves. When this happens, one person needs to stick on the buster and snare/root it consistently while everyone else goes and deals with the tank. One person having snares/roots will not cut it. Now for the bosses: There are five bosses, and the instance seems to pick them at random. They are pretty easy over all. Here are the ones I can remember: -The Siren. This failed pop-star spawns mobs that travel in a straight line and knock you back and annoy you if you don't move out of the way within 30 seconds. She hits somewhat hard and has this annoying scream ability that constantly knocks you down if you get caught in it. She casts this on the tank, so it's up to the tank to avoid it, which requires attentiveness but little else. She also has an AoE telegraph that's easy to avoid. Boring. -The Rogue. This guy runs around teleporting and does little damage to anyone. The only gimmick he has is some random shadow trap he spawns on a person that stuns them for a while and his Shadow Mine ability, which spawns DPS'able mines on everyone that blow up after about 5-7 seconds or something. These mines tether you, so you cannot get out of range of the one that spawns on you, but you can avoid the ones on everyone else. Just spread out beforehand and DPS them down when they spawn. Exciting. -The Tank. Yes, another tank. It spawns robots that blind you but hit you for nothing, along with another AoE knockback telegraph. Her only really dangerous ability is her Lawnmower ability. No, that's not its real name, but that's what it is: she'll face a certain direction with a really obvious telegraph and after about 3-4 seconds will sloooowly run down that area with a LAZER between her treads. If you get caught in the LAZER, you can't escape it and you'll most likely die. A drunk monkey could avoid this, so...avoid it. Amazing. -The Esper. He spawns copies of himself that disappear after a while and does some boring telegraph stuff. He's a Chua too. Kill him. Exhilarating. -The Elementalist. This wanna-be Fire Mage has two gimmicks: an aura he casts that does crazy damage, so the tank just has to kite him around while it's up, and a bomb ability that he spawns on everyone. It either doesn't do much damage or doesn't hit the person it spawns on, so spread out and wait for it to go off. Fascinating. -The Sniper. He does telegraph stuff, teleports around, and rips off an ability from Guild Wars 2 (Ride the Lightning). He does fairly decent damage, but nothing a competent group can't handle. Plagiarizing. -The Robot. He does telegraph stuff. Think of it as a Fel Reaver that can't sneak up on you. Outstanding. -The Engineer. He spawns bots. Move away from them and kill him. I don't remember anything else that he does, probably because he's just as remarkable as all these other guys. Thrilling. -The Warrior. Also known as Vizrek. Also known as That Fucker . This is the worst boss of the instance by far. He does stupid telegraph stuff, but his ridiculous gimmick is that he will target and cast The Big One (not kidding) on a random player/friendly minion. This must be interrupted if it is used on anybody but the tank (if he's geared decently) or the friendly minions you have. Why? Because it does lots of damage, reduces healing received by 99%, and incapacitates the targeted member. Therefore, if you see this guy spawn, the group should wait and spec into heavy interrupts before engaging. He has 3 Interrupt Armor and casts The Big One (sigh) around every 30 seconds or so. Coordinate as needed. The minions can take him for a while if you die, though, so if you wipe to him, respawn immediately and run to get back to him before he kills them all and starts hitting the McGuffinator. This applies to all the other bosses too, but you really shouldn't wipe to them anyway. Exasperating. Uh, yeah. That's it. Survive all that without letting them hit the McGuffinator once and you get gold. At the end, a bunch of mobs will spawn that you should ignore. Just crowd around the McGuffinator. They will all die in 30 seconds. Crimelords of Whitevale It's back to Whitefail, my lovelies, only with less bugged quests and more choices that you never take. This is more or less an RP cakewalk that gives you two epics if you pick the right path and don't die. So, long story short: you're some gang in Thermock Hold that got killed and you have to find out who killed your fellow members and torched your clubhouse by picking a rival gang at random and beating the crap out of them. Yes, that's the story. And you always end up picking the right one. Whichever gang you pick determines which bosses you will fight. Pick Redmoon Marauders as the gang you want to target, then do as many Alliance missions as you can. Always pick Rocktown Rollers, as their missions are the most straightforward and don't bug out. There are five stops along the way or so and you get a choice of missions to do. You want to avoid the War in the Streets and Criminal Enterprise missions, prioritizing the Alliance missions over all others, then picking Vengeance as your backup. On very rare occasions, the game will not let you do any Alliance/Vengeance missions, but 9/10 it will, so my advice to you is to abandon the instance if that happens. Anyway, your goal is to max out your notoriety as a gang by doing these missions. So after you start the instance, just follow the RP to the clubhouse, where Ric Longshanks, the most interesting character in Wildstar, will let you choose which gang to get revenge on based on no evidence whatsoever. Then do this: Step 1: Pick Redmoon Marauders. Do the mission. Go back to the clubhouse. Step 2: Pick Alliance. Then pick Rocktown Rollers. Go kill the mobs. Go back to the clubhouse. Step 3: Pick either Alliance again or Vengeance. Don't pick War in the Streets. Keep doing the Rocktown Roller missions until you max out. Step 4: At some point you'll do a side mission to rescue either some First Mate guy or a Rocktown Roller leader. Easy stuff. A note here, though, about rescuing the First Mate: after you've freed him, don't pull any adds. Let him start walking and pulling on his own. Then you should be good. If you don't do this, he may bug out and you'll have to leave the instance without any good loot. Step 5: Boss. By rolling with the Rollers.....................................................................................................................................................   you'll end up boarding the Void's Fury and face the Captain. I don't know who he is, but he's easy, even after the latest buffs. Go through the ship and clear the mobs to the Captain. Pull him to the one of the side paths away from where you find him, making sure you leave the center gap between you and where you found him. Why? Because every so often he'll run back, stun everyone, and Death Grip them into a telegraph that will one-shot people if you don't get out in time. While this is doable regardless, if you pull him to the sides, he cannot actually Death Grip you over the gap into his telegraph, rendering the whole thing pointless. Other than that, manage the adds with 25k health (i.e., kill them) and win. Step 6: Go back to your original clubhouse and face the First Mate, who is now the New Captain. New Captain brings with him a bunch mobs that come at you in waves and are really, really boring. Then the New Captain attacks you and you kill him. Avoid his telegraph stuff, especially his wanna-be Illidan Beams. When you finish gearing up from these, you get to do dungeons. Finally. And then you die horribly for hours, just like you've always wanted.
  2. Like I said, there's nothing illegitimate with those kind of theories in the WoW Universe. They can and do happen. However, they do require us to assume something unnecessary in the face of all evidence, and they can't be verified until after it's happened. That's not the same as speculating, say, how Garrosh will become leader of the Horde. We know he will, and we know its possible in the crazy world of politics, and it doesn't require us to believe that his current man is possessed. Even inside the imagination theories are subject to the scrutiny of simplicity. --- Varian's actions in the Undercity were myopic, not stupid. It's rather hard for outsiders in the Alliance to distinguish between Putress/Varimathras' Forsaken and Sylvanas' Forsaken. Not even Sylvanas' knew of the plots against her, and the issue becomes worse when you consider that Varimathras' and Sylvanas' long-term agendas only differed in loyalty and execution. The Forsaken as a whole still want to wipe everyone out--or at least eliminate anyone who is a serious threat to them--and that qualifies pretty much the entire Alliance, given them every reason to be suspicious and fearful. Yes, Varian should have been more thoughtful about it and chose a more pragmatic route--fighting Thrall and Sylvanas in those sewers would have caused great harm to both factions regardless of the outcome--but both his and Thrall's actions in the Undercity are totally understandable given what they've been through as individuals and what political/social/cultural contexts they exist in. The factions in the Horde have a bad history of rampaging over planets and killing people. Varian myopically sees what's happened in the Undercity as one in a long, simplistic line of atrocities on the part of the Horde. He's emotionally simplifying a complex issue. Myopic and foolish, but not stupid.
  3. Mal'Garrosh or Garfarian theories are kind of pointless to speculate about since they can only be verified ex post facto. They also violate Occam's Razor, which is why they tend to be used very sparingly in lore. Not to say that such lore is automatically illegitimate: it's certainly possible in the WoW universe. We've got the Cosmic Windchime Gods floating in Shatt. But still: "So instead of this guy actually being a jerk as all signs indicate, he's REALLY a Nathrezim/Dragon/Crazed Gnome impersonating him and the REAL guy is actually very reasonable and tolerable and...." Garrosh <-> Garithos is a pretty good comparison, but I like to put Garithos on his own pedestal of idiocy, as he was responsible for throwing away one of the best allies the Alliance has ever had. The wrong man in the wrong place at the wrong time, no? We shall have to wait and see if Garrosh proves as equally disastrous for the Horde. I doubt it. -- Anyway, back on the nature of Garrosh. I think it also should be said that it's hard to view the in-game presentation of the Thrall/Garrosh duel as being anything but lame, which might be a minor factor in why Garrosh is disliked. Perhaps the comic had more to say about it due to the flexibility of the medium compared to a small world event, but Thrall's "loss" to Garrosh in game seemed very contrived, given how powerful Thrall has been stated to be. I think some speculated at the time that Thrall intentionally lost to Garrosh so as to prevent more inner conflict, yet the point stands. The duel probably ticked some Horde players off: it was their first impression of Garrosh v. Thrall and subsequent exchanges have failed to paint Garrosh in any better of a light. [Edited for spelling]
  4. Something like that has already been confirmed in Cataclysm. If I recall, Sylvanas invades Gilneas to try to improve her standing with the other Horde leaders and gain new territory, causing the Worgen to join the Alliance. But don't forget that the Forsaken pretty much hate everyone. :) Garrosh's actions might be tolerable were the Lich King or other more pressing threats not around. Unfortunately, they are. With Garrosh going around kicking everybody's buttons, he's proving a huge detriment to an effective front against Arthas for no discernible reason. He hasn't had much contact with the Alliance to explain his hatred of it, and he seems to lack even a basic understanding of logistics and tactics. How he got so much power or influence in the Horde is perplexing. I think most people dislike him because he just comes across as a mindless Horde fanboy who got where he is through blood instead of merit. (And because Metzen said so.) Horde players would rather have a strong-willed, intelligent Thrall or Saurfang Sr. compared to someone so bratty and foolish.
  5. Simply put, a Scourge without some leadership or logical vision just goes about rampaging across Azeroth without any sort of purpose. It wouldn't just be all the ghouls being unleashed a la Army of the Dead, though. You'd have the Cult of the Damned, the San'layn, the Frostbrood, etc., all bereft of their leader, and they split off and go around trying to further their own myopic agendas without regard to the bigger picture, causing mass devastation. Devastation with a purpose > devastation without a purpose, all things being equal. Who wouldn't rather the Scourge be easily eliminated when Arthas is killed? After spending a lot of time in the depths of Frostmourne, Uther has probably gained some keen (if horrific) insight into how the Scourge works as an Intellect. He knows what would probably happen if we just cut off Arthas' head and left Frostmourne there to rot, i.e., nothing good in the long-run. His statements to Jaina are rather calculated: better that someone noble and fundamentally uncorrupted to hold and bind the Scourge together so it can disintegrate or be dismantled without causing great harm to all Azeroth.
  6. I always thought the Sindorei joined the Horde because of political convenience and their ties to the Forsaken. The Blood Elves don't want anything to do with the Alliance, for justified and unjustified reasons, so they turn to the other major power on Azeroth for protection as it were. As a culture and society, however, the Blood Elves have far more in common with the Alliance than the Horde, even if they have bad feelings towards each other. They only remain in the Horde, again, for convenience--and because their own actions ruined any chance for reconciliation with the Alliance for quite some time, although given the events at the Sunwell they would seem to have a rather chummy relationship with the Draenei now, don't you think? The Horde is truly a horde: a mixed bag of races with little societal or cultural similarity coming together through the personal actions of a few leaders and all measures of political and military convenience. Like others have said, the trouble is it's becoming difficult to continue justifying the Horde's continued coherence as time goes on. Were the lore not bound by the needs of gameplay, the Horde would be gravely unstable and probably fragment in Cataclysm, if it hadn't fragmented already by now due to the disaster at the Wrathgate and other incidents in Wrath. We even see this pattern continue in Cataclysm. The only reason the Goblins join the Horde is because Thrall saves/aids them. Again. This is, what, the third or fourth race the Warchief has single-handedly saved? It's official: Thrall will never, ever die. The Worgen, on the other hand, join the Alliance for a myriad of political, social, cultural, military, and historical reasons.
  7. The Covenant and the Sunreavers are two small orders based in Dalaran with little-to-no power outside of areas under Dalaran's influence. They mostly serve as a sort of "hedge" that allows Dalaran to include both factions while maintaining order and segregation. Their in-game purpose has always been to separate the factions. There might have been some underlying plot planned for them at the beginning of Wrath (see: the encampments in Crystalsong), but that was never followed through. In essence, they have very little real power of their own. I would hesitate to call the Covenant representative of an entire race for those reasons alone. Allieria said what I was going to say about Quel'dorei demographics.
  8. Garithos holds much of the blame for ruining the Blood Elves' relationship with the Alliance and the state of Humanity as is, but we must keep blame in its place. After leaving Azeroth all of Kael's decisions and choices were his own, nothing more. The Alliance and the Horde have their own sins and accomplishments. It's silly to try to pigeonhole them into black and white roles. I don't deem them "equals" in the pro/cons department--I believe the Alliance to be a superior faction to the Horde for many reasons--but the moral argument will always be fundamentally subjective and thus pointless. Neither the game nor the lore declares either faction to be good or bad. Even the Forsaken, as dubious and conspicuously malevolent as they are, have some good members--though fewer than some apologists would like. I agree that the Horde as a darker past than the Alliance overall, but bickering about it accomplishes little.
  9. @Wyldthang: Sylvanas' forces were quite hostile to all others around her the moment from the very beginning. She immediately ordered her banshees to possess many factions who had nothing to do with their enslavement (ogres, gnolls, bandits, murlocs, etc.) and used them to subdue Varimathras. Then she shamelessly lied to Garithos and his forces, promising them she'd relinquish Lordaeron when the Scourge had been driven from the land. After Garithos' forces aided her in winning her independence, she quickly disposed of them without a second thought. I'm not saying Garithos was innocent--he got far, far less than he deserved--but he had little to do with the actions of the Forsaken apart from being the puppet of Detheroc. They've always been a dubious faction in word and deed.
  10. "Sideshow" was written in the context of Mal'ganis' WC3 role. As shown by his unexpected non-demise at the hands of a newly Frostmourne'd Arthas, Mal'ganis was a sideshow even then, a random Nathrezim who underestimated Ner'zhul. He served no purpose in the Legion or the plot other than to facilitate Arthas' contact with Frostmourne. Once he served his purpose, he was immediately offed and we never see or hear of him again until he randomly pops up at New Hearthglen. We don't even know it's Mal'ganis until Onslaught Harbor, where his appearance is pointless. He just proudly pronounces that we "need" him somehow and then non-dies. Again. Showing up in the Halls of Reflection would make a certain amount of sense, but with Jaina/Sylvanas already being set up there as the main plot figures, I'd say it's unlikely. Of course, we have no way to know for sure until Halls of Reflection is up on the PTR. Speculation is fun in the meantime. ;) Still, it wouldn't be surprising if this remains just another unresolved thread at the end of Wrath.
  11. Hmm, I can see it now: Mal'garrosh. I like it. But on topic, how would Mal'ganis legitimately show up without causing a general "Lolwut?" moment? As an NPC in an encounter? A separate encounter? I highly doubt he'd show up in the Arthas Fight. I'm pretty sure Blizzard wants it to be a final, climactic battle involving all the major players. Mal'ganis just seems to be a sideshow, certainly not as relevant as Sylvanas, Darion, or Tirion.
  12. Are we sure that the Ebon Blade's raising capabilities extend beyond raising mindless zombies? I don't remember what happens in that quest Kaejin linked. (There are so many quests in Northrend...) I can imagine that raising a ghoul requires much less effort and power than tearing a full-fledged soul--sentience, consciousness, and all--back from the dead, considering concoctions and tinctures alone can raise zombies like the plague. Ha ha, puns. To Arthas, raising a banshee or Lich might not seem like much, since he does it all the time, but the Ebon Blade has its limits. I don't think they can do anything beyond making a few ghouls and such, but I could be wrong.
  13. Well, the Ebon Blade may reek of death, but it's not like they're a bunch of crazed, psychopathic lunatics. Darion's Ebon Blade is probably the most lucid and effectual of all the factions out there. They're pretty much the only force, Horde or Alliance, who see the situation clearly and understand what they're up against without regards to politics, the finer points of morality, and personal feelings. They let logic and a cold desire for vengeance dictate their actions, which ironically pits them against the idea of unnecessary bloodbaths. I imagine they view such things as a waste of time and resources, causing a whole bunch of headaches and wasting otherwise valuable resources and men that could have been put to use against the Lich King. And let's not forget how useful the dead are to Arthas. Had the Ebon Blade gone on an unreserved rampage in Northrend, I think the uniqueness of their faction would be sorely lost. An Orc commander might order a village in the way of his army to be burned, but the Ebon Blade would certainly try to find a way around the village, not only to save time and resources, but to deprive the Lich King of potential soldiers.
  14. I counted twelve from the description. The Blues have there will be no vehicle battles in Icecrown, so the Gunship battle is probably a scripted Akama-style event (although hopefully not a pushover) with a faction-specific endboss. Make the two abominations separate encounters and you get twelve. You could also have twelve bosses if you omitted the Gunship battle as an encounter and separated the Three Princes into separate encounters, but I doubt it. The Blizzcon pictures and the description itself gainsay that theory.
  15. Well, to be fair, we won't know the exact extent of the content revamp (or even if the leaks are all true, despite MMO-C's historical trustworthiness) until Friday-ish, so patience is key. :) But it might not be as much work as we think. They work on expansions years in advance; it's far easier to revamp old content than to create new. Some zones might not get much of a revamp anyway. If we presume the Cataclysm emanates from the Maelstrom, we can assume that the most affected areas would be the eastern coasts of Kalimdor and the western coast of the Kingdoms. That leaves us with a list areas more likely to get a revamp: (I am not betting anything on this list, btw. It's utter speculation and I fully expect Blizzcon to prove it wrong on many accounts.) Azshara - major revamp Durotar - major Barrens -> split into two zones, supposedly Dustwallow Marsh - unsure Tanaris - unsure Thousand Needles - major Tirisfal Glades - minor Silverpine Forest - major revamp due to Gilneas Hillsbrad Foothills - major Arathi Highlands - minor Wetlands - major Badlands/Searing Gorge - included because a "new" Blackrock mountain was mentioned in MMO's notes Dun Morogh - Gnomeregan; more of an instance revamp than anything else Elwynn Forest/Westfall - major Stranglethorn - major Darkshire - I assume Darkshire would be addressed somewhat because of the Worgen storyline The rest of the zones would get small, minor revisions: quest changes and clean-ups, small terrain modifications and improvements for flying, NPC changes, etc. So that's, what, 17 zones up for revamp, with about half of those being true overhauls? We also have to consider that Azeroth zones are about half the size of Northrend zones on average, so that comes to about 6-8 Northrend Zones in content. This doesn't include the "new" zones like Gilneas and the Goblin Starting zones, so add about 3 new zones there (I presume Silverpine will count as the Worgen 10-20 zone), so it's about 11 new Northrend zones overall. Then you add in some of the "underwater" zones and it goes higher. It's more work than Northrend, but if you also consider that even major revamps are less work than completely new zones, it's about the same work as a new expansion. --- The timeline issue stands only if you assume the content and leveling path stays the same. Players will be offered "a greater narrative and sense of progression" according to MMO-C, so I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that the leveling curve we're all be used to be will be cleaned up and heavily modified. However, I don't think the problem will be resolved entirely unless they phase all Azeroth. Players in Outland are still urged to go into SSC and TK even though those places and bosses are dead lore-wise. There will be always be anachronisms in WoW.