Latest in Gaming

Image credit:

[1.Local]: An Ensidia-free zone


Reader comments -- ahh, yes, the juicy goodness following a meaty post. [1.Local] ducks past the swinging doors to see what readers have been chatting about in the back room over the past week.

Grab a cushion, flop down and give your weary dogs (puppies?) a rest. The photo above notwithstanding, rest assured that the rest of [1.Local] this week is an Ensidia-free zone. (So is the world-first 25-man Lich King kill, for that matter.) Can you imagine having to hash that out yet again? What a relief that [1.Local] isn't merely a tally sheet for comments from stories with the most views -- or even the stories with the most comments, or the most positive comments, or (as comment trolls hold fast to believing) the most negative comments ... We can follow our own little quirky path through the conversation of the past week.

Let's bite into the rest of this week's goodies just like we all like it: nice and meaty, with a little bit of hot, runny juices from the odd little beasts we discovered just down yonder, off the beaten track...

Incentives for appropriate gear types coming in Cataclysm
Plate classes in plate, cloth classes in cloth, mail and leather classes in mail and leather ... Cataclysm will make us all toe the line with the "correct" armor type.

: I find it perplexing that there should be incentives to wear your own armor ... Any kind of stat boosts, etc., would just inflate the already inflated stats further. It would be far more reasonable (and easier) to just add some negative effect to all armor classes below your own (like an automatic downscaling of stats or something). No need to over-complicate things.

Draelan: Actually, it's kind of amazing how well people will agree to something if it is worded positively, even if it provides no additional benefits. Take, for example, the rest bonus system. In beta, there were additional levels of "rest," which included one where you would only gain 50% XP from monsters. This was very unpopular, because it felt like a penalty for playing. So, Blizzard got rid of it and adjusted the rest bonus system to what we have today. However, when doing this, they had to slow down the speed at which a character levels to match the intended speed ... So they doubled the amount of XP needed to reach the next level. The overall effect was that characters leveled at the same rate as previously, but the system was popular now that it no longer SEEMED to penalize players.

It's a rather common phenomenon, actually. It's simply the way people are wired. If Blizzard were to, say, give you a bonus to stats based on what armor level you were wearing but simultaneously nerfed the benefit you get from stats in general, the effect would be that the "proper" armor would give no additional benefits than normal (and lower armor would provide a decrease in stats, essentially, a punishment for wearing them). However, the change would still SEEM positive because of an emphasis on the "bonus" and the use of positive language.

snowleopard233: Hey, leather chaps don't necessarily need to have anything to do with stats. Some paladins just want a look that says "Daddy likes leather."

Maiku: If only my priest could wear leather, then he'd be a true discipline daddy.

Hal: There's a reason they call him "Edward the Odd."
Paying the hybrid tax
The semi-accepted, unofficial value of the hybrid tax is supposed to be 5%, and shadow priests seem to be just fine -- but what about those poor, poor paladins?

luuuunatic: My question to you is, what about paladins? They can tank, DPS and heal. Yet what tax do they pay? They can even wear plate!

Tom: BC is calling -- they want their "Paladins can't tank bosses" back. Get with the times.

clundgren: Oh good ... The paladins are OPed meme comes up again. I find it fascinating that the original poster raises this point after reading an article that cites specific DPS numbers but apparently didn't even bother to read that data before the whining about paladins begins.

So let's look at that data: the only pure melee DPS in ICC, rogues, average 11.53k DPS. Ret paladins Average 10.09 DPS. That's a difference of 8.8%. What, you say, a higher tax than spriests pay? Yes, yes it is. It's also a higher tax than warriors and DKs pay. In fact, paladins are doing better DPS than exactly one class (I feel for ya, shamans). But don't take my word for it: look it up. So there's that claim debunked.

I'm in a progression guild. The assertion that prot paladins are the "preferred" tank is ludicrous. They are, for most fights, the preferred OFF-tank. We almost always have a druid/or warrior eating the big shots to the face. Look at the top guilds in the world, and you'll find a similar pattern. So there's that.

Paladin healers are AWESOME ... for single targets, and if the paladin doesn't have to move a lot. We always bring exactly one, and no more. We typically have a minimum of two priests.

In PvP, spriests are the flavour du jour, or didn't you get the memo? Ret paladins have been languishing since the monster nerfs, but check out Arena rankings if you don't believe me. Holy paladins are great, to be sure. Prot paladins used to be. Not anymore -- they all rerolled prot warriors.

Why does every article have to immediately spark a "Waaaaaah, paladins are so OPed" thread? There is no basis for it in the DATA, and coming from priests, who are reallly, really strong in all of their roles right now, it's a little ludicrous.
Fire and brimstone
What's the proper term for a gathering of warlocks? A conclave? A summoning? A coven? Ah, yes -- a hellraising. Readers suspected the worst from staffers who might've gotten wind of this particular event.

Sumanai: I bet one of the crashers was Christian Belt! He heard about the event and was trying to drop a little present: a huge fireball of burning warlock-y flesh! ^^

xoxotl: Really? I heard that Archmage Pants had been hired to provide catering services. "Would you like some water? How about some strudel?"
Blizzard launches Facebook Armory app
Will you link up your Facebook page to your Armory feed?

: Letting all my friends know I play WoW? No thanks ...

Ringo Flinthammer: Get a little bit older and you'll decide: 1) you don't need 500 "friends"; 2) there's no shame in playing -- the fantasy football guys are just as geeky.

Almoderate: Oddly enough, I mentioned in passing on my FB page that I was playing WoW only to get more than a few old high school and college friends respond that they played, too. Then we all started linking Armory pages and talking about what we were doing in game. It eventually led to all of us playing together and reconnecting in that way. So no ... I don't mind so much that they know I play. :)

danawhitaker: This would be nice payback to all the people on my friend's list who spam me with Farmville and Mafia Wars updates. Unfortunately, I lost my interest at the five-character limit. I have seven characters I'm actively working on (one 80 and six 35s), and I really can't choose two to leave out.

Ed: I wasn't going to get the app until I saw this post. Now it's fully set up to spam my friends every time I so much as pick up a green.
Blizzard announces upcoming premium AH through Armory feature
Accessing the Auction House from outside the game? Say what?!

Mr. Crow: Clearly the game-breaking component of the auction house being accessible outside the game is how much capability players have.

If players can browse the AH but can't purchase anything or post new auctions, then it'll encourage people to get more involved in their server economy and give people chances to get access to items they might not normally see. This is a positive change because it encourages players logging in to work with the economy. If players can both browse the AH AND performs buyouts AND post new auctions, then we run into the doom condition of bots controlling EVERYTHING.

Ozzard: As a programmer, can I do a slight "it depends" here? Playing the real-world stock market, especially as a day trader, is all about getting information faster than anyone else, making decisions faster than anyone else and acting on them faster than anyone else. Speed of information is king. Live feeds of share information from Reuters cost tens of thousands of dollars per seat per year. Fifteen-minute-old feeds are available for free on Yahoo! The information is that time-sensitive.

Parts of the WoW economy are also time-critical. When some newcomer to the AH lists that epic at 10% of its normal price ... You want to know as soon as possible so that you can buy it. The faster you can get AH information, the faster you can react to such opportunities. Bottom Scanner in Auctioneer does exactly this: continually scans for bargains and tries to get you to buy them before anyone else does.

An external AH feed -- *if* it is real-time -- could be much more efficient and much faster than Auctioneer's approach of reading a page at a time. This gives some really fun opportunities for linking the bot that's handling the external data feed to a second monitor (if you want to be low-tech) or some screen-reading and mouse-clicking application (if you want to be higher-tech). Fastest feed wins. None of this is new technology, by the way. Bots capable of reading screens and clicking mice are old hat in the online poker world, and they can be made utterly undetectable if you throw a little (relatively cheap) hardware at the problem.

So. Even a read-only AH feed *can* give an advantage, if it gives information earlier and/or more efficiently than the in-game system, or if it gives that information in a form that can more easily be crunched by more powerful systems than Auctioneer.
Is Arthas redeemable?
This week, guest writer Richard Powell debates the matter of Arthas: not whether he will be redeemed, but whether he should. Provoking food for thought -- but not every reader was able to take the topic seriously.

Hoggersbud: He's only redeemable in NY, MI and CT.

Locktart: Bah, that's just a small percentage. In CA, you get a full refund.

ben: 5 cents, I believe, but it depends if we are talking about Dasani Lich King or Aquafina Lich King. Don't even get me started on Poland Spring and Deer Park Lich King.

The infamous Gnomeregan princess scam

The screenshot to your right comes to us courtesy of's Brian Wood. It's a screenshot of an actual in-game mail sent from an unfamiliar, random character to one of Brian's characters.

In other news, Nigerian princes are coming together to picket the burgeoning non-unionized Gnomish industry.

Of Miley Cyrus and WoW

And hot from the tips line ...

Name: [redacted]
Subject: Attention Heads Up

The reason why Miley Cyrus is spending her time in Hazard Kentucky, because she found someone who she like, and he is a very special guy, his name is [redacted], and he lives in Hazard Kentucky, and spends alot of time with Miley Cyrus.. I know this is really true because i am his ex girlfriend. If you don't believe than go to his myspace at[redacted]/ and look at his photos..

Eliah Hecht: Uh?

Fox Van Allen: Claiming for Spiritual Guidance!

Michael Gray: NO WAY. That's a Ready Check, you rapscallion!

Daniel Whitcomb: Oh please, Miley Cyrus is obviously a Banshee, which makes this Lichborne territory. We have Banshees in the Ebon Blade! Well, one Banshee. But she's pretty awesome.

Lisa Poisso: Hazard, Kentucky? Bah, that's [1.Local].

Michael Gray: Fine. I'll up the ante and say that makes her professional. Insider Trader.

Adam Holisky: I already posted it, guys. Calm down. I'm the Miley lead.

Matthew Rossi: Is it possible someone could tell me who Miley Cyrus is?

Ha, caughtcha looking! Hey, don't scroll away ... Come join the conversation on these and other posts around the community. We'll see you around in [1.Local]!

From around the web

ear iconeye icontext filevr