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The Queue: Nonlinear raiding

Matthew Rossi

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Matthew Rossi will be your host today.

For at least the first tier of raiding in Warlords of Draenor we're looking at nonlinear raid formats, raids where you have some choice or decision about which boss to do next. Some of my favorite raids - Tempest Keep, Black Temple, Ulduar, Blackwing Descent, Firelands - had this design element, and I love how it allows you to pick and choose which boss or wing you wanted to work on next. Even ICC had it, and I remember a very long and intense discussion about whether it would be best to do Plague or Blood wing first.

We went with Blood. We had a strong healing core, so we considered doing Frost first, but in the end we did Blood, then Frost, and finally Plague, while almost every other guild on our server seemed to prefer Plague, Blood and then Frost. And that's what I like about this kind of raiding - it lets you progress based on your strengths and what you're feeling is the best way to proceed, and if a boss turns out to be a block for you, you can move to another and give it a try.

So yay for nonlinear raiding.

Arthonos asks:
Hypothetical question: The main focus of WoD is Garrosh going back in time to prevent the orcs from drinking the Blood of Mannoroth. If your character could go back in time to change one event in Azeroth's history, what would it be and how would this change alter history?

Well, putting the cart before the horse here, it's now pretty definitively established that with Nozdormu depowered and the Bronzes much diminished, attempts to do that would just make an alternate timeline like the one we're about to go adventuring in. The question then becomes why is that bad and why did the Titans empower Nozdormu to prevent it from happening, and why was defeating Deathwing more important than continuing to stop alternate timelines?

As for my my character would do, do you just mean Azerothian history? Because I'm pretty sure my draenei would go back to Draenor and stop Grom from drinking the blood of Mannoroth... hey, wait a minute...

jacobbelmore asks:
Lore Q4TQ: I was flying out to the Isle of Thunder on a new alt last night, and Vareesa said that the mogu empire had risen to power 12,000 years ago. I thought, until the shattering (10,000 YA) that pandaria was part of the unified continent. Why didnt the night elves know about the Mogu and Pandaren? Why arent there Mogu on other continents?

If you look at Pandaria as a continent, the mountainous regions to the north would have provided an effective barrier between what became the island continent and the rest of the world - both Kun-Lai and the Jade Forest are made up of uneven terrain. Combine this with the fact that the mogu were Titan constructs like the tol'vir or vrykul with a specific task to perform (and they only rebelled after the Curse of Flesh began to afflict them) and you have a race of beings who have no compelling reason to go anywhere (the vrykul didn't go very far from Northrend either) and a fairly effective barrier as to where to go. They expanded south instead of north, ran into the mantid that had served their ancient enemy and settled down. As for why the night elves didn't remember them, we don't know that they didn't - night elf society as we know it was rebuilt after Azshara and her servants were defeated and the Legion halted, at the cost of Kalimdor's destruction. A lot was lost, and the people who rebuilt said society were not the ones who had been in charge of diplomacy before it. The naga in the Pearl of Pandaria certainly seem to know about the continent, so perhaps the ones who knew about the mogu simply ended up on the losing side.

JordanPhillips asks:
q4tq: The orc architectural structures in Azeroth (before Garrosh war machine craziness) that I'm familiar with were usually primitive and tribalistic, meaning structures of wood, cloth, and leather. In Outland though, we see Hellfire Citadel and many old structures of iron and stone made by the Orcs (during Blackhand's reign?). I've never quite understood this; were the Orcs of Draenor more advanced, and had their own iron age and boost of technology, while those who went to Azeroth remained kind of backwards?

Hellfire Citadel was built by the Old Horde after they became demonically corrupted. That means it's entirely likely that Gul'dan gleaned the ideas on how to construct it from a combination of studying draenei settlements and structures after conquering and inhabiting them (both the Black Temple and Fortress Auchindoun were draenei built) and ideas from the demons of the Burning Legion. The orcs we meet in places like Nagrand live in much simpler clay structures. When the orcs threw off the blood curse from Mannoroth's blood, they rejected these ideas. Garrosh's adoption of them was the first red flag that he was going to be far more militaristic than his predecessor.

It wasn't a lack of understanding, it was an attempt to embrace a different way of life.

nathanyel asks:

As someone who rarely does BGs/PvP anymore, does the "Honor earned this season" requirement for the weapons get fulfilled by JP converted to Honor?

Yes, it does.

gazaa07 asks:

Q4tQ: Do you think blizzard will (in some form) get rid of the concept of "Pure DPS"?

No. They might eventually give in and let warlocks tank, although I don't expect that, but I really do not believe Blizzard will simply make everyone a hybrid.

paul.morales91 asks:

Here's a question for ya: where the heck is Orgrim Doomhammer? As warchief of the Horde after Blackhand and the one who killed Lothar, wouldn't he be one of the stars of the expansion? Now he was a friend of Durotan, so its possible he's just a member of the Frostwolves and doesn't qualify as a 'Warlord', but certainly we should have heard something about him shouldn't we?

Well, Doomhammer was the second in command of the Blackrock before he decided enough was enough and killed Blackhand. Since Blackhand is still alive and still in charge of the Blackrock on Draenor, we don't know for sure where Doomhammer is - remember, although he didn't drink the blood, he wasn't opposed to the violent military conquest of other worlds in our timeline, so this Doomhammer might be an enthusiastic member of the Iron Horde. He was never a member of the Frostwolves, but he could have rebelled against the Iron Horde as well - we won't know until Warlords comes out (or at least until its beta).

And that's the Queue for today.

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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