Skill Calculator Updated – New FeaturesSkill Calculator Updated – New Features


There’s a distinction between group quests and content and actual grouping.

I play all the aforementioned games, including Star Wars: The Old Republic, with my friends. While people were raging about SW:TOR the “singleplayer RPG”, my experience couldn’t have been further from that description. Every quest in Star Wars: The Old Republic was a group quest for me. Why? Because I played with a group! I don’t need the game to force me to group by gating my progress with group content and if you truly are such a social butterfly and play MMOs to interact with other players, there’s absolutely nothing stopping you from doing so. You have a group finder and you have general chat – use it!

On one of my first nights playing The Secret World, another game that doesn’t force grouping, I ran into some random fellow doing the police station zombie defense quest outside of the Kingsmouth police station. He randomly invited me to a group. We finished that mission and proceeded to play through the rest of the night together doing all manner of quests and solving puzzles together. None of the quests we did required a group, yet we had a great time.  

AAA MMOs are never going to go back to forced grouping. It’s time to let it go. And you should be OK with that, because if the crux of the issue is you want to play with others, you don’t need the game to force you to do that. If you’re as social as you would seemingly claim, you’ll naturally group with other players you meet in the game. I met some of my best friends through my adventures in the ultimate sandbox (to me) that was Star Wars Galaxies, but guess what? SWG didn’t force me to group. Sure, there were dangerous areas of the game you weren’t likely to survive without a group, but I made most of these friends even before seeking out these challenges.

Heck, one of the very first things I did in Star Wars Galaxies was get together with over 40 other random newbies and try to survive running amok on Endor during the first week or so of launch. 

Developers have been trying to tackle this issue in creative ways over the past couple of years, going all the way back to the prototype of dynamic group content in Warhammer Online’s Public Quests, to Trion’s RIFT, and now to Guild Wars 2. ArenaNet in particular has, I feel, best identified (and dealt with) this social interaction deficit in MMOs. Guild Wars 2 has been designed around allowing for seamless, scaling group play any time you want it. I feel this is the right approach. Instead of designating group content and/or forcing groups upon players, Guild Wars 2 simply makes grouping and cooperating  simple, hassle-free, accessible, and more importantly, integrated into the core experience of playing the game. We’ll have to see how it ultimately plays out later this summer.

The fact of the matter is this: Gamers who want to play with each other will simply do so. It doesn’t matter if the game is a sandbox game or a themepark game. It doesn’t matter if you can solo to level cap or not. The beauty is that we now have options to experience these games how we want. Could MMOs use more group centric content to give those so inclined more challenges to tackle? Maybe. But complaints that an MMO that clearly has group content (whether it has enough of it is subjective) is a singleplayer game because it doesn’t explicitly force you to play with others is just ridiculous.



Flashpoints Beta PreviewFlashpoints Beta Preview


As part of our continuing beta coverage, Community Manager Mike Bitton has the inside scoop on Star Wars: The Old Republic’s flashpoints. The article contains a few minor spoilers to reader beware! Check out Mike’s preview of the SWTOR flashpoints and then leave us a comment or two

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Flashpoints are Star Wars: The Old Republic’s version of instanced dungeons you might find in other MMO games – with a twist. Flashpoints, like just about everything else in Star Wars: The Old Republic, reflect BioWare’s story-focused approach to the game as a whole, offering players a cinematic group-centric experience loaded with storyline. Well, most of the time anyway.

The starter Flashpoints, The Esseles (Republic) and the Black Talon (Imperial) strongly focus on story in the way BioWare has described, but the developer has added new Flashpoints to the game that are more akin to your typical dungeon run. These additional Flashpoints were mentioned during the main Star Wars: The Old Republic panel at this year’s New York Comic-Con as a way of giving a choice to players who are more interested in a straightforward experience focused on gameplay or puzzles. The additional Flashpoints, story focused and otherwise (a total of 15!), will allow players to basically level up via Flashpoints at any juncture in the game if they so choose. Everyone loves variety, right 

Physical utility skills are like warriors have a kick

This is the minor trait in the adept trait that you cannot change. The major trait is in the adept column of the strength trait line. You click and you get a pool of 12 traits. You can pick one of these traits. These things do a myriad of stuff, were just going pick the first one that pops up just to show you how the system works. You have flex, you gain three stacks of might for 15 seconds whenever you use a physical utility skill. Physical utility skills are like warriors have a kick, we can kick people away from us, or we can jump in the air and stomp, and guys go flying back. It’s a physical thing, so when we put more points in, we got this so the minor trait in the master column in the strength trait line is building momentum. Using a burst skill restores endurance.

The burst skill for the guild wars 2 thief guide to the initiative. Where you fill up your initiative and use your burst skills. You can’t change this, building momentum, but we put 5 more in now we unlock the master and major trait. Now we can open this up and you will see out of this pool of different traits we can select from, flex, which is another 10 points in is gone. Now we’ll just go short when you are blocked. Now the minor trait in the grandmaster column of the strength trait line is stick and move. Damage bonus when initiative is not full. Again you can’t change this but, if we put 5 more in or you can just click here, it puts all 30 in for you. Now you get the pool, subtract 2.

Restoration strength. Using a heel skill will remove weakness, cripple, freeze, and immobilization. World of Warcraft players are starting to see how this traits system in Guild Wars 2 works and it’s in your brains now. And you’re thinking to yourself, How am I going to use the trait system to my advantage and murder my enemies. I know that’s what you’re thinking because that’s what I was thinking. And remember I was crazy cynical about Guild Wars 2. 

Guild Wars Nightfall PVP Preview EventGuild Wars Nightfall PVP Preview Event


On the weekend of July 28th to July 30th, players will be able to experience a special sneak preview of the newly announced Guild Wars Nightfall campaign through our Guild Wars Nightfall PVP Preview Event!

During this time, both Guild Wars Prophecies and Guild Wars Factions owners will be able to:

  • Create new PVP characters using the upcoming Dervish and Paragon professions.
  • Test out both classes’ exciting new skills in both beta-exclusive preview arenas and current battle arenas.
  • Compete against other players in special PvP tasks to gain items that will be exchangeable for a variety of rewards throughout the weekend event.

To make testing of the new professions even simpler, secondary profession changers will be available throughout the duration of the event. These special characters will allow existing players to change their pvp character’s secondary profession without having to re-create them if they so choose.

Come and join us for the festivities, and get a chance to test out the exciting new professions and skills during this special weekend event! 

A fallen angel is an angel that has been exiled or banished

Inarius, a renegade Angel and the creator of Sanctuary, wanted its inhabitants to worship him and fuel his ego, although he appears to be the only known Angel to desire this. While some are sympathetic to humans and truly believe in their potential for good, such as Auriel, freely offer advice and guidance to them even the bowels of Hell itself, such as Hadriel, and even go as far as continually aiding them in their struggles with the Evils and their many mortal and demonic servants, such as Tyrael, the forces of Heaven have thus far largely ceased to interact with Sanctuary and with humanity or interfere with the affairs of mortals, allowing each to choose their own path, for good or ill.

Even so, in battle, Angels can strike as much fear in mortal hearts as demons. They wield the elemental powers of Ice and Lightning and Light, and are expert melee fighters. The Seraphim division of the Angelic Army has been known to sweep entire legions of Demons in a single day. All angels have the power to fly, excluding Fallen Angels. A fallen angel is an angel that has been exiled or banished from the High Heavens. This can come to be because of corruption, or more often such banishment is a punishment for disobeying or rebelling against the Angiris Council. Another way is for deliberate betrayal by an angel.

Izual was a great lieutenant and friend to the Archangel Tyrael. He once led a fierce attack upon the Hellforge as the creation of the dark demonblade Shadowfang was nearing completion. During the battle that ensued, Izual was overcome by legions of Chaos and was lost to the Darkness. His body was corrupted by the Prime Evils as they forced his soul into the body of a demon, turning him into a demonic monstrosity. They forced him to betray his own kind and give up Heaven’s most guarded secrets. Izual became a corrupt shadow of his former self; a fallen angel trusted neither by Heaven nor Hell. 

The Jade ForestThe Jade Forest

                After a naval battle between the Horde and the Alliance leaves the survivors stranded on the beaches of Pandaria, rescue parties of those factions’ elite soldiers set out explore the mysterious, fog-shrouded island. You are among them.
                As one of the first explorers to set foot on Pandaria, you’ll begin your investigation in the midst of the emerald bamboo and coastal marsh of the Jade Forest, where two of Pandaria’s most prominent races make their homes. The monkey-like Hozen and the Jinyu fish-people thrive near the rivers of the Jade Forest, and your first encounters with them are likely to be hostile. Yet, ultimately, your lack of allies and guidance in this unfamiliar land will make befriending the natives your only option.

on the eastern heart of the Jade Forest, the races of Pandaria maintain a temple to the Jade Serpent, a venerable spirit of wisdom and foresight. Here, overlooking Pandaria’s coast, the myriad races of the continent come to meditate for insight or peruse the living archives of the temple’s library, where Pandaria’s history is literally brought to life. The temple is particularly sacred to the fish-like Jinyu, who use its scrying pool to serve as their eyes and ears throughout the continent. 

What about crossing over into real-life cosplay? Any interest?


I do usually dress up for the World of Warcraft release parties as my troll. For Cataclysm, I dressed up in Gamemaster’s Robes (still as my troll), while my girlfriend went as Sylvanas to theStockholmrelease party, and for Wrath, we just went as a generic troll/blood elf couple in random fantasy clothes/armor. We’ll see what we can cook up for Pandaria, but I sadly have less time to get a suit together than I used to. Chances are high that I’ll show up as a troll, however!And when you’re not playing WoW, what are you doing?

I work, dreary as that sounds! I’ve got a master of science in business/economy and do that for a living. In my spare time, I enjoy hanging out with friends, play games, etc. I also enjoy cooking and often have friends over for dinner followed by some gaming or going out somewhere. I live with my girlfriend, and we usually end up doing whatever the other one is doing if we have nothing to do, so our days can be a touch “unplanned” like that, but it’s all good. I do enjoy taking it easy and just enjoying my time off for what it is instead of filling up every ounce of free time I have with activities.

“I never thought of playing WoW like that!” — and neither did we, until we talked with Game of Thrones’ Hodor (Kristian Nairn) … a blind ex-serviceman and the guildmates who keep him raiding as a regular … and a 70-year-old grandma who tops her raid’s DPS charts as its legendary-wielding GM. We appreciate the enthusiasm of everyone who signed up for the World of Warcraft Annual Pass, and we’re working hard to get you into the beta. We know you’re excited to explore Pandaria and test the new content, and we’ll keep you posted here in the forums when we’re ready to send out another wave. If  you habe any interesting story, welcome to share them with us. We offer the whole day service to provide the gold and the service.



BlizzCon Costumes — Deathwing BlizzCon Costumes — Deathwing


BlizzCon presents an incentive for real-life tailors and engineers to take up their needle and thread and their cardboard and spray paint, in order to fashion amazingly realistic recreations of their favorite Blizzard characters and creatures. After this year’s costume contest, we invited the winners to write articles on the art of costume-craft for us to share with the community. Here’s the third entry in the series, written by Justin, who won third place for his take on Deathwing.



My name is Justin Floyd, and I am Deathwing. Rather, I was Deathwing. This costume started at the insistence of my wife, who decided I would fit the character of the deranged former Earth Warder quite well, which I’m not sure is a compliment. Without her help, this costume would not have been possible (mainly because my artistic ability is confined to stick figures and shadow puppets).

Let me start off by saying that I have a deep fondness for the Blizzard community. I met my wife at BlizzCon 2005 and many guildies at other BlizzCons along the way, some of whom I consider close friends. I’ve played Blizzard games since Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness was released, and it is the community and storytelling that always brings me back. Getting to be a Warcraft character for a day was awesome and the support from fellow BlizzCon attendees was amazing.

We started planning and working on the costume in April and literally finished it an hour before I had to be backstage. Of course this means I missed a lot of the cosplay meet-ups, but considering some of the mishaps we had, we’re lucky we got it finished!


Angels are beings of pure light and sound

The Angelic host believes in strict discipline and order and wages a constant battle for the sake of all creation against the demonic hordes of the Burning Hells who seek to turn existence into pure chaos and enslave humanity for their own ends. Angels are beings of pure light and sound, as they are born when all of the High Heavens are in perfect harmony. Angels cannot be directly looked at, or the viewer will risk permanent eye damage. Angels appear as humanoid figures in shining armour. They wear either helmets or hoods and, as seen during Tyrael’s transformation into a human, actually possess no true head or face, only a black featureless shape where a head would be.

All angels also bear wings in the form of streaming tendrils of light flowing from their backs. In the Wrath animation they are shown being able to merge these tendrils into actual wings of light, but this may be more a part of the animation’s style than a canon aspect of the race. The armour of angels seems to serve to help them contain the light and harmony of their beings into a single place and form. When their amour is damaged the light within drips out like blood. However they also possess great healing abilities, able to recover from impalement and to coalesce if their forms are dispersed. Their wings seem to be a portion of their true forms beneath the armour and they can be torn out which will cause the angel to take on a fleshy form, as happened to Inarius and Tyrael.

In the Diablo universe, Angels are somewhat different from their Judeo-Christian counterparts. While most Angels strive to bring discipline into the world and oppose chaos, and they are said to fight to protect mankind against demonic oppression, they will go through any means to accomplish it. Angels are sometimes described as being very rigid or (arguably) overzealous – for instance, when they discovered the world of Sanctuary, the Angiris Council first contemplated destroying the hidden realm along with all life because of its partly demonic origins. We specialize in providing customers with cheap Diablo 3 gold and with fast delivery. 

the First 2 Structured PvP Map


Niflhel, one of structured pvp map in Guild Wars 2,has two PVE MOBs that give a nice buff to whichever team gets the killing blow on it. And they aren’t that easily soloable. If you’ve played League of Legends or Dota, you will know all about this. My problem though, this isn’t a MOBA-type game. It should be pure player-versus-player. And in my opinion, I wouldn’t have those mobs in the map.I also found that with so much line of sight, it can sometimes be kind of hard to find the enemy. The map is like a maze in some ways, and the capture points themselves are almost hidden behind obstructions. Making it difficult to see who is there or who is coming. And this kind of makes fights boil down to the center or central map area, which mostly comes from AOE professions like guild wars 2 elementalist and guild wars 2 necromancer, and the fight is also far away from any capture points.


 The other map, Battle of Kyhlo, is much better in my opinion. For one, there are no PVE MOBs. Instead, there are two trebuchets that can pretty much hit everywhere on the map. And they can be broken by the enemy team. Which makes the map gimmick require more active player participation. The trebuchets can be used to break the cover off the middle point.This is old hat by now. This is information that’s been available since they first announced PvP being in Guild Wars 2. I didn’t mess with the trebuchets anyway. I was playing as guild wars 2 mesmer guide and to busy stabbing people in the face with a pair of daggers from my illusions.


 Battle of Kyhlo feels less like a maze than Niflhel. Fights will primarily be near the actual control point, which, by the way, can be easily seen from across the map. And because of the central clock tower, navigation on this much is so much easier. The map is not nearly as vertical, although it does have its ups and downs, not anywhere near as much as all the other map. Both maps may come as a shock to anyone who has played any other BG and any other MMO.Let’s take World of Warcraft for instance, which had very open, very large maps. In Guild Wars 2, they are very enclosed. At times almost claustrophobic. This isn’t a bad thing if handled correctly, like Kyhlo, but incorrectly, can make the whole match one big cluster. By launch, there should be two more maps. So only time will tell if the fairly enclosed map design trend will continue.