The Queue: Min-maxing archaeology

Alex Ziebart
A. Ziebart|12.13.10

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The Queue: Min-maxing archaeology
Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Alex Ziebart will be your host today.

What does one do after hitting level 85? Spend three straight days digging up rocks, of course. Zin'rokh, you will be mine. Even if your model is upside down now.

MoarHeroisms asked:

What's a good time to use the green archaeology fragments to solve artifacts? Is it a good idea to use a handful at once?

I think it's a matter of personal preference. If you save it for when a rare discovery pops up on your archaeology panel, you'll be able to learn that rare discovery faster. If you use them as fast as you can and as early as you can, it will get you through the commons faster for a chance at a rare. Which is better? I'm not sure yet. Personally, I use my greens right away, but that might not be the best way.

Vorenos asked:

Quick poll: What's your favorite Cataclysm instance so far?

Vortex Pinnacle. I think WoW's djinn are somewhat silly, but Vortex Pinnacle is absolutely beautiful, and Altairus has very cool mechanics. It's even more exciting on heroic.

Grim Batol is fun, but I'm not a big fan of the drake bombing run. Screwing that up can add a good extra 30 minutes on a run, and at that point, you might as well start the instance over and try again. It's just too punishing if you screw it up. It's not like wiping, running back, and reassessing a boss. It makes the entire instance significantly longer. Don't get me wrong, I love the instance and think the mechanic is really neat; it's just too punishing if you do poorly.

The bosses in Grim Batol are great too. The ettin, Forgemaster Throngus, is basically just a redo of Pit of Saron's Forgemaster Garfrost wherein the weapon swap mechanic actually matters. I think that's cool. Plus I've always wanted more bosses that make use of their shields.

Enigma asked:

In the beta, worgen had an awesome animation when switching to human form (not from). First one arm changed, then the other, then in a back-arched howl the rest would go. Now we just have a *poof-you're-a-worgen* thing.

What happened?!

Nothing happened. It's still there. The only time it doesn't happen is when you transform in combat, because you probably don't want to be stunned and stuck in a long transformation sequence when you're getting ganked and/or trying to fight something. If you transform manually, it will play the transformation animation in full.

Henrah asked:

One of the first few quests in Hyjal has you transport Fandral Staghelm from his prison to the Emerald Dream. Why exactly was Fandral imprisoned in the first place? Is there any in-game lore or event that I missed to explain this?

Unfortunately, no. That entire scenario is explained in the recent Stormrage novel. Blizzard hasn't put much effort into keeping players that haven't read the novels in the loop. I'd hoped they wouldn't have repeated the Obsidian Sanctum error, but they sure as heck did.

If you don't want to be spoiled on the end of the Stormrage novel, stop reading now.

Fandral was keeping Malfurion stuck in the Emerald Dream and was in league with the powers behind the Nightmare. At the end of Stormrage, Malfurion goes Super Saiyan and saves the world from darkness. Personally, I would rather have Fandral around than Malfurion. He was way more interesting.

Have questions about the World of Warcraft? The WoW Insider crew is here with The Queue, our daily Q&A column. Leave your questions in the comments, and we'll do our best to answer 'em!
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