Throw your dog in a hat and take it to the opera, this dog is a dandy! Dandy dog in a costume.
"I read a while back that the ability to have your Real-ID visible only to friends and not "friends of friends" was going to be available after SCII was released. While I understand that this probably requires some down time, and they didn't want to take the servers down on SCII launch day, will we be seeing this soon? Or is it implemented and I just missed it?"
This was just over a week ago, last I checked, so it's apparently still in the pipe. We haven't heard about any delays or cancellations.
"With being able to fly in old world Azeroth, will there be a reason to use your non-flying mounts? Are new cities like Dalaran so you cant fly in them?"
Well, there aren't really any new cities, per se, but no, none of the cities have flight limitations at this point. You'll be using a ground mount if you don't have a flying mount available, and other than that, it's just a matter of personal taste. Interestingly, all of the current 80+ instances in the Cataclysm beta allow ground mounts to be used.
"What will happen to my red gems come Cataclysm?"
Commenter Cataca gives us the full list of single-stat Cataclysm gems and what their colors will be:
Stormy: Spell Penetration
Smooth: Critical Strike
"Has anyone gone through all of the old 5-mans to see if they have been changed at all?"
Nearly every low-level dungeon has been changed in some way. It ranges from boss changes (Deadmines, Shadowfang Keep, Stockades, Stratholme) to new quests (Dire Maul, Scholomance, Scarlet Monastery) to level changes (a whole bunch of them).
The newest change I've seen is a certain infamous gnoll being the end boss of Stormwind Stockades. Other changes include some scheming elementals within Dire Maul, new events in Scarlet Monastery, and replacements for Rivendare and Dathrohan in Stratholme.
"What new ports will mages receive in Cataclysm?"
Very likely none. All of the new zones are reachable from Stormwind or Orgrimmar, and with a flying mount, you can get to the portal area from the center of town in seconds.
"So what exactly is happening in the new Deadmines? Who exactly are these new residents? Any word on bosses?"
Helix Gearbreaker (a goblin rogue), Glubtok (an ogre), and Admiral Ripsnarl (a worgen) are the figures that Vanessa Van Cleef recruits for the new Defias Brotherhood. It's likely that they'll be the new bosses in the instance, with Vanessa as the final boss.
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