Blizzard deployed WoW Patch 5.3 after server maintenance this week. Patch 5.3, dubbed as “Escalation” is a major patch and it contains a lot of new content and fixes.
Image Credit: Blizzard and us.battle.net
Quoting the official battle dot net website:
The battle for Pandaria is approaching a fever pitch. Her resources are plundered. Her earth is scoured. The Alliance and the Horde are at each other’s throats – but great dangers lurk within their own ranks.
While Warchief Garrosh Hellscream’s excavation squads bore deep into Pandaria’s Vale of Eternal Blossoms in search of chthonic power, Taran Zhu, lord of the Shado-Pan, grows increasingly concerned about the presence of outsiders in his homeland. Meanwhile, in search of new soldiers to shore up his war in Pandaria, King Varian Wrynn has been forced to turn to the Dark Iron Dwarf Princess Moira for aid.
The struggle for Pandaria threatens to engulf all Azeroth, and you’re at the forefront of the conflict.
I am also excited about the following wow content/lore updates:
Battlefield:Barrens (I won’t give spoilers but this will be the staging point for the Darkspear rebellion)
Cool new character title “Darkspear Revolutionary” for the Horde (sorry I have no active alliance toon to get the counterpart title “Hordebreaker”)
Level 85-90 XP requirements reduced by 33% in this patch. (Yo! Time to max the alts!)
I really love the Warcraft lore so I’m glad that finally Vol’jin and the Darkspears are now leading some revolt against Garrosh. I have just finished reading the Tides of War novel several weeks ago, and every time I see Garrosh in-game I make it a point to “/rude” him whichever toon I’m logged in 🙂 . I also remember doing some wow scenario last year (the one where Garrosh ordered Vol’jin killed but the troll shadow hunter mon survived) and I’m loving how this “oust Garrosh” plot is turning out.
Cant wait til my wow weekend!!!
You can read more about WoW Escalation: Patch 5.3 here and here
Like WoW and warcraft? Kindly visit my other wow posts here
Some good news to those who want to try out World of Warcraft MMORPG or those who have toons stuck at level 20 with their World of Warcraft Free Starter Edition.
Blizzard is having a World of Warcraft sale at Blizzard Store this week. The World of Warcraft Battle Chest (originally priced at US$19.99) is now on sale a US$5!!!
Image Credit: blizzard.com
So what does this Battle Chest includes? WoW Battle chest includes the ff:
World of Warcraft (Vanilla) complete game
The Burning Crusade Expansion (Outland)
The Wrath of the Lich King Expansion (Northrend)
First month (30 days) WoW game time
Brady Games’ 256-Page beginner’s guide
5 Dollars? Yes that’s 75% off! WoW Battle Chest Sale FTW!!! This is really a good WoW bargain if you will ask my personal opinion.
Battle.Net, Blizzard Store and WoW Game Launcher is blasting this info since the weekend (I noticed it last saturday night) and they say its this week only so hurry if you want to grab it.
This is also great news to those asking about World of Warcraft Philippines, because those who will avail this WoW Battle Chest Sale get the vanilla + 2 expansions, and take note this is official game server (retail server).
WOW! Just wow! WoW Mist of Pandaria sold 2.7 million copies in its release week (September 25 to October 1). And if we include the other Asian Mist of Pandaria sales, I would guess it will also be over 3 million copies sold worldwide.
Another good news is that WoW global subscriber base surpassed the 10-millionth mark. I know this is less than the 11 million peak several years ago but I believe this is still a great figure for MMORPGs.
Quoting official Blizzard Press Release
ALLIANCE AND HORDE ARMIES GROW WITH LAUNCH OF MISTS OF PANDARIA™
New World of Warcraft® expansion sells 2.7 million copies in first week — global subscriber base passes 10 million
IRVINE, Calif. — October 4, 2012 — Following the September 25 global rollout of World of Warcraft®: Mists of Pandaria™, the new expansion to the world’s #1 subscription-based massively multiplayer online role-playing game, Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. today announced that millions of players have already joined the fight for Pandaria. During the first week of launch, prior to the release in China on October 2, the expansion had already sold through approximately 2.7 million copies and the game’s global player base passed 10 million subscribers, with growth across all major regions.*
“With Mists of Pandaria, we set out to expand on the sense of fun and discovery that’s always been at the heart of World of Warcraft — in addition to adding a huge variety of new content and features to the game,” said Mike Morhaime, CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment. “It’s been gratifying to see the results of all of the work we put into this expansion and to hear all of the positive feedback from players so far.”
The World of Warcraft development team is already hard at work on the first major post-launch content update. Further details, including features and release timing, will be provided in the weeks ahead.
Gratz to Blizzard!!! and Gratz to the WoW Gamers too! Enjoy Mist of Pandaria!
As promised in my previous WoW Patch 5.04 post I will do an update post if my Mist of Pandaria Patch 5.04 was successful.
I am glad to tell you that the World of Warcraft optimization for patch 5.04 was a success in my machine. Running the launcher for the first time will play the World of Warcraft Mist of Pandaria Opening Cinematic, then users will have the traditional EULA agree blah blah blah.
Lots of changes just like the patch update for WoW Cataclysm launch in 2010. I’m glad there is not much architectural remake/major changes for the main cities (Ogrimmar, not sure about Stormwind) like in Cata.
Let me give the highlights (or my favorites), quote official explanation from Blizzard, and give some personal comments (warning: may be noob comments so please bear with me).
Mounts, Pets and Achievement Galore
Account-wide mounts, pets, and achievements! It’s finally here, and you’ll be able to enjoy just about every mount and pet you own on any character, and any license, under a single Battle.net account. You can also work on a wide variety of Achievements from multiple characters.
I love this change as my other toons can share the other toons (in the same account) achievement and pets. This includes achievement, achievement points, mounts, plethora of pets and even achievement title (e.g Jenkins)
We had difficulty finding the mounts and pets tab, so if you are having the same problem, just look for the horse head icon in the main toolbar (or press Shift-P)
Bye Bye Relics, Ranged and Thrown weapons
The ranged/relic/thrown item slot has been removed. All weapons should now be equipped in the weapon slot, and ranged weapons, including wands, have been adjusted to be more powerful.
Relics are useless. Sad patch day for the Inscription professionals. But they (Inscription profession) can create good weapons (staff), maybe I will try that out soon.
Bye Bye Conquest points
PvP Season 11 ends. As usual, we’ll be determining who is getting end-of-season awards, so stay put and don’t change realm if you think you’re eligible. Conquest points will also automatically convert to Honor points at this time.
Eligible? I wish!!! Got some extra honor points from the conversion and honor caps are gone now (maybe temporarily) so its good.
Unli Daily Quest
The Daily Quest cap is removed. While this will truly shine in Mists of Pandaria with far more robust daily quests, you can certainly take advantage of it before then.
I believe I never used up the (25) limit, I’m a casual player 🙂 but I guess this is a good change for those who like to lots of dailies.
AoE loot Galore
AoE looting! Round up a ton of enemies, nuke ‘em, and then pick up all of their loot with a single right click – bag space permitting.
I have not tried but this is promising for farming (ok for cloth farm, not sure for skinning/etc.)
Wow patch 5.04 Character Abilities Changes
Blizzard did some massive changes on the abilities. Too many to mention, and some are too difficult to understand, better read the full release notes for Wow patch 5.04.
But Blizzard WoW Team also highlighted the changes in each of the character class’ Spellbook and Abilities (press P) ( What has changed Tab) as well as give some quick guide on the key changes (affecting abilities, spells, rotations) (Core Abilities Tab)
Some of top of my mind classes and changes:
Wow patch 5.04 Druid Changes
The Feral specialization has been split into Feral (for Cat-focused druids) and Guardian (for Bear-focused druids) specializations. Each of the four specializations has a more distinct and different set of tools, but all of the spells available to the specialization are now useful. For example, Feral and Guardian druids can cast Healing Touch for a useful amount of healing, and Balance and Restoration druids can make better use of the Cat Form and Bear Form abilities they have
I’m curious to know more about the Guardian specialization. I noted some considerable changes on my feral druid action bar (some missing icon meaning the spell, and abilities are gone). But what is really interesting that Druids have a lot of specialization available Resto, Balance, Feral and Guardian).
Wow patch 5.04 Druid Travel Form Change
It seems that Druid Travel Form have some changes. Previously it was a cheetah but now it looks like a deer or reindeer? (will look for this one in the official patch release notes).
Wow patch 5.04 Priest Changes
Mana pools are fixed for all casters (more on this below). Chakras are now more similar to warrior stances. Changes have been made to Discipline to further support the damage absorption playstyle. Shadow priests now have Shadow Orbs as a resource, which can be generated by some of their basic spells, and spent on either strong damage or crowd control.
The use of shadow orb as resource may be similar to paladin and death knight resource usage, but getting used to this one may be a challenge (at least for me imho). I noted few changes on my shadow priest action bar abilities and spells (missing 1 or 2 only). For Healing, sorry I don’t like healing much so I haven’t check changes with the holy spec.
Noted on my priestess gear: PVP power – new terminology
Spell Penetration has been replaced by PvP Power, and Resilience is now PvP Resilience
More descriptive now. Makes more sense to me.
Wow patch 5.04 Hunter Changes
There is no longer a minimum range for the class. The ranged weapon slot has been removed from the game; hunters now equip their ranged weapon in the main hand weapon slot. Hunters now benefit from Expertise as their ranged attacks can be dodged. Any type of pet can now choose any specialization (Ferocity, Tenacity, or Cunning).
Huntard Rule No. 1: Equip that bow or gun to main hand slot.
The removal of hunter minimum range will be a great changer for the huntard gameplay. Wow patch 5.04 Hunter Pet changes are kinda powerful and it looks very promising, but I am worried that it will be “nerfed to the ground” come next patch 🙂
That’s all for the Wow patch 5.04 class changes. Maybe I can try and post other classes changes over the weekend.
Some personal notes: Seriously, I think I’m getting too old now because I cannot understand all the changes in one sitting. Maybe I’ll try out with one toon first and focus on it. Then when I’m comfortable with the changes I will move on to the next toon/class combo changes.
Special thanks to Bashiok (and to Blizzard and WoW Dev Team) for coming up with the Wow patch 5.0.4 Survival Guide, it’s my source for the quoted text above.
In preparation for Mist of Pandaria Go Live date (September 25, 2012), Blizzard is updating the WoW content to include Mist of Pandaria in today’s weekly server maintenance!
Known as the Patch 5.04 (hashtag #patch504) today’s maintenance will be a full 8 hours as announced by Blizzard Customer Support via Twitter
Image Credit: Twitter.com
When World of Warcraft players will click on the World of Warcraft launcher, they will be prompted about the game update:
Confirming the update, WoW users will see that the World of Warcraft launcher now has the Mist of Pandaria logo instead on the previous Cataclysm.
The launcher explains that it is doing a World of Warcraft install optimization, a process that usually takes some 15-60 minutes. The text in the launcher explains that WoW runs this from time to time to improve game performance and reduce the WoW install files in user HDD. I understand that this means Blizzard will clean up those old huge MPQ files that are not needed by the new patch (good move if you ask my personal opinion).
Important note: The update/optimization process may be memory intensive; in my machine (a low end one) this one took half of my available CPU:
Process Explorer Image showing average of 50% CPU loading for Agent.exe, the Battle.net update agent
Image Credit: sysinternals.com
So take note of this if ever you are also have other CPU intensive progs and apps in the background.
Because most of Blizzard’s World of Warcraft official resource websites and services are down in synch with the maintenance, Blizzard’s Battle.Net WoW page have the usual “We’ll be back soon!Contact Blizzard Customer Support via Twitter“… maybe 🙂
Aside from MoP content updates, I remember that Patch 5.04 will make all races available to all types of account (paid and free wow account) so this means Free WoW starter accounts can roll/choosee for Goblin and Worgen even if they got the free starter edition only (previous pre-req was Cata).
Another patch change that I remember was this Patch 5.04 will do the conversion of unused Valor and Conquest points… so bye bye bye Valor and Conquest (Not 100% sure of this one, but its ok for me personally as I don’t have much of these points anyway hehehe!)
So stay patient my fellow WoW Fans out there: Don’t panic if you see the Mist of Pandaria logo in the launcher, but don’t get too excited either OK? :-p While waiting I suggest you watch the World of Warcraft Mist of Pandaria Opening Cinematic first or read my other wow posts 🙂
Will try to create another blog post if the MoP content update will be successful in my machine….
Again: Be safe people, in WoW game and outside the game, online and offline!
Now that the WoW Mist of Pandaria near its Go Live date (September 25, 2012) Blizz is all out fueling the excitement for Pandaria’s release. They recently released the Mist of Pandaria Opening Cinematic video:
Video credits: Youtube.com and Blizzard
Official Blizzard and Youtube video description intro:
You’ve ended Deathwing’s destructive rampage and saved the dragonflights from extinction. Now you must unlock the mysteries of the lost continent and discover the dark secrets of Pandaria’s past. Explore ancient kingdoms hidden since before the Sundering, plunder vast treasures from the depths of the forgotten vaults, and rise to defend Pandaria from the shadow of a long buried evil – before it’s too late.
The opening cinematic video reminds me of WoW Vanilla opening cinematic (as well as TBC opening cinematic too), where an Orc and a Human are fighting one-on-one and the additional new-featured race barges in and joins in the fun!!!
I really find the video cool, funny and cute. I’m smirking when the Orc and Human fighters in the cinematic seems to so clumsy against the Pandaren monk (maybe an encouragement to WoW peeps to roll out for a Pandaren Monk toon hehehe!).
The video ends with a good question from the Pandaren “What is worth fighting for?” and I am very hopeful that behind all these Pandarian excitement going around is a real and genuine depth for this WoW expansion.
For more World of Warcraft related post kindly visit my other WoW Posts.
World of Warcraft Mist of Pandaria will go live on September 25, 2012. Mist of Pandaria is also pre-selling at the Blizzard website as I write this post.
Image Credit: us.blizzard.com
Quoting the official Blizzard website:
Heroes of Azeroth, prepare to embark for an exotic new frontier! World of Warcraft®: Mists of Pandaria™ is launching on September 25, 2012 and you can be ready to play when the servers go live by pre-purchasing the game digitally. Plus, for the first time ever, players will have the option to upgrade a pre-purchase to the all-new Digital Deluxe Edition which comes with all of the in-game items from the retail Collector’s Edition, including a World of Warcraft pet and mount, banner sigil and accent for Diablo® III, and Battle.net® portraits for StarCraft® II.
Honestly this is a sweet surprise for me because my wild wild guess is that MoP will be available during (or at least near) the holiday season (December 2012) just like WoW Cataclysm way back in December 2010. But this is welcome news for all the World of Warcraft fans out there!
Some timeline for Mists of Pandaria:
August 2011 – Blizz Filed Trademark for the Mists of Pandaria fueling speculations that it will be the next WoW Expansion
October 2011 – Blizz confirmed Mists of Pandaria as the next WoW Expansion during the Blizzcon 2011
March 2012 – Mists of Pandaria Closed Beta Starts
July 2012 – September 25, 2012 Go Live Launch Announced
No wonder cyber crooks have intensified their Phishing campaigns for World of Warcraft recently. Want more details for the World of Warcraft Phishing activities? Please visit this menardconnect.com and Malware Blog.
World of Warcraft Mist of Pandaria pricing info: USD 39.99 for the Standard Edition, USD 59.99 for the Digital Deluxe Edition and USD 79.99 for the Collectors Edition.
I’m always excited when I encounter some #security meets #gaming issue. So I’m eagerly re-posting my blog article published in the TrendLabs Malware Blog entitled World of Warcraft Scams: Mist of Pandaria, Free Mounts and Phishing Galore.
World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria is the fourth expansion for the massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) World of Warcraft. It was first unveiled to the public last October 2011 during the BlizzCon 2011 conference in Anaheim, California.
TrendLabs researchers started seeing increased phishing activity inside World of Warcraft after Blizzard started the closed beta testing for Mists of Pandaria last March 2012.
In these new rounds of phishing attempts, scammers are trying to abuse the WoW’s in-game mail system. In this phishing attempt, the malicious URLs are sent via in-game mail and are received by players in their in-game mailboxes.
In this phishing try, the scammer entices would-be victims to join the Mist of Pandaria beta testing and win an exclusive in-game item, the Dragon Turtle Mount, by visiting and registering in their website. The Dragon Turtle Mount was previously announced by Blizzard as the racial mount for the Pandarens, the new additional playable character race available in the Mist of Pandaria expansion.
The phishing URL in the in-game email goes to a phishing website that closely resembles the actual Battle.net website. The phishing URL tried to add some credibility by adding the string Mist of Pandaria abbreviation (MOP) to the domain name.
If unsuspecting users input their Battle.net credentials it will definitely result to Battle.net account theft. Battle.net is the central account management for all Blizzard games like World of Warcraft, Starcraft 2, and Diablo III.
In contrast to what we discussed in our previous World of Warcraft post, we observed that recent scamming attempts seem to be targeted at low level characters and not high level or level-capped (Level 85) ones. This may be part of the scam detection avoidance strategy of the bad guys, as high level characters may have more awareness to this security issue as they have spent more time in the game.
We analyzed the malicious domain further and found some great discovery: The same server also hosts other phishing sites targeting World of Warcraft players:
The newly discovered malicious websites are using Mist of Pandaria, World of Warcraft, and their corresponding abbreviations in their URLs.
Trend Micro users need not worry about these threats, as they are protected from these World of Warcraft phishing attacks via the Trend Micro™ Smart Protection Network™, which blocks access to the phishing websites.
It is interesting to note that some of the phishing websites were registered just days after Blizzard announced that Mist of Pandaria will be the next World of Warcraft expansion. This clearly shows that the bad guys are up to date and are always in the lookout for events and opportunities to expand their nefarious schemes.
Blizzard on their part have stepped up their security measures. They have published a dedicated security page to help users understand their security commitment; raise awareness on different types of account thefts, highlight a gamer’s security checklist, and a step by step guide on what to do when users suspect that their account is being compromised.
Blizzard also promoted their authenticator (available as an app for iOS and Android devices, and as a keychain fob) by giving away an exclusive World of Warcraft Corehound pet to users availing the authentication services.
We also advice our readers, casual and hardcore gamers alike to view our latest Security and Gaming e-Guide to get helpful tips to help secure their online game experience.
Thanks to Paul Pajares for additional technical details.
World of Warcraft game and expansion packs are on sale this week!!!
Image Credit: Blizzard.com
You can now play World of Warcraft for free (up to level 20), and get World of Warcraft Battle Chest for only USD 10 (WoW Battle Chest provides access to vanilla and Outland contents, previously at USD 19.99), upgrade to World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King for USD 10 (previously USD 19.99), and upgrade to the latest expansion World of Warcraft: Cataclysm for USD 10 (previously at USD 39.99)
Offer is good until July 9, 2012 only (Most probably Pacific Standard Time so hurry)
Do you want some FREE World of Warcraft mount? If yes then you are lucky and you should read my whole post below:
Blizzard is having another free wow mount promo. Rewards for the player will be the following free wow mounts:
Spectral Wind Rider for a Horde character
Spectral Gryphon for an Alliance Character
Blizzard is reviving the Scroll of Resurrection free mounts promo. If you have a friend (or family member) who got an inactive World of Warcraft account, bring them back to WoW and you will get the cool rewards above.
And your returning friend will have some free cool stuffs too like: