Blizzard Confirms “World of Warcraft” In-Game Store to Include Pay-to-Win Items

Blizzard Confirms "World of Warcraft" In-Game Store to Include Pay-to-Win Items

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Blizzard Entertainment has confirmed that it will launch an in-game store for World of Warcraft responding to rumors by players in WoW test servers last week.

Community manager Bashiok said in the game’s forums that Blizzard is still early in development of the in-game store but that the first tests will take place in the Asian regions before spreading to other countries. Blizzard looks to simplify the purchasing process that already exists on external websites and also add items that allow new players to catch-up quickly.

“For players who are already interested in the in-game items we offer, such as Pet Store pets and mounts, the benefits of an in-game store are pretty clear,” he said. “We think everyone would appreciate the convenience of being able to make such purchases without having to leave the game, and ultimately that’s our long-term goal for the system, though there’s quite a bit of work involved in retrofitting those existing items into the new system.”

Bashiok also said Blizzard was responding to players requests for items of convenience and that players requests and feedback will have a huge impact on what will be available in the store. One possible outcome being the listing of many ‘pay-to-win’ items with experience buffs and ways to acquire lesser charms.

Blizzard has been dealing with falling player counts in World of Warcraft, still the largest subscription based massively multiplayer game out there, but facing serious competition from free-to-play services that offer in-game stores to purchase items and skills.

World of Warcraft still has 8.3 million users and Blizzard says it will be releasing many more expansions and content updates in the near future.

Blizzard Leaps Into the Last Decade With New Launcher

Blizzard Leaps Into the Last Decade With New Launcher (Video)Blizzard is finally getting with the times. Following the lead of Valve’s Steam and EA’s Origin – and just about every other game publisher right now – with a beta test for its new unified franchise launcher. The launcher will replace the individual in-game applications used to update, install, and start Starcraft 2, World of Warcraft, and Diablo 3. Blizzard also says it’s looking into the possibility of supporting older titles in the future as well.

YouTube user HuskyStarcraft has access to the beta and took us on a guided tour of the new features. Features seem to be mostly functional, allowing user to repair broken installs and easily supports updates to multiple games on once. Included is a news flow for each game with announcements about tournaments and promotions.

The big news here is the back-end integration at Blizzard that opens up all sorts of possibilities, like auto-seeded matches and being able to keep in touch with friends out of the game.

Itching to try it out? Head over to Blizzard’s beta sign up page. No word yet on when we’ll get a launcher to launch all these damn launchers.

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New FFXIV: Render Brings Forth Gilgamesh

FFXIV Gilgamesh 670x446 New Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn Render Brings Forth Gilgamesh

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Gilgamesh is one of the most beloved characters in the Final Fantasy series, even more so because he appears in almost every numbered chapter, with varying roles ranging from a villain to a NPC or even a summon.

A few months ago we saw a piece of artwork showing his appearance in Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn, but today we got something a lot more substantial: the actual render of the textured 3D model. You can check him out above.

Looks quite imposing, doesn’t he? Can’t say I’m not eager to cross swords (and gunhalberds, axes and maces, apparently) with him in the game. Luckily, the open beta is going to start soon (on August the 17th for everyone and on August the 16th for those that took part in the closed beta) to ease everyone’s withdrawals.

FFXIV:Open Beta Start

FFXIV CG 3 670x446 FFXIV:Open Beta Start and Early Access Dates Announced

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During the Letter from the Producer Live broadcast that is currently being aired by Square Enix, Producer and Director Naoki Yoshida finally announced the much awaited start date of the open beta of Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn.

The gates of the new and reborn Eorzea will finally reopen on August the 17th and will close again on August the 19th. Everyone will be able to play during those three days, but those that played in the earlier phases of the beta will be able to start on the 16th instead. Turns out the rumor I reported on a few days ago was actually correct.

Early access for those that preordered the game and Legacy members will start on August the 24th.

That’s a later date than many hoped, but at least now we know when we’ll be able to ride chocobos and ogle sexy miqo’te (female or male, depending on your taste) again.

As a quite relevant aside, all progression achieved during the open beta and the following early access will be carried over (short of unforeseeable problems) to the released game, so you can pretty much consider the upcoming beta phase as a soft release in which you can already start leveling your character up. Unfortunately the game will have content only until level 20 during the open beta, so the progression that can be achieved is limited (you wouldn’t be able to go much further in three days anyway). On the other hand early access won’t have limits.

Finally, the new Arcanist class will also be available during the open beta for everyone to try out for the first time.

While you wait for the floodgates to open again, you can check out my hands-on preview of the closed beta, topped with its 723 screenshots.

Details on the class changes for World of Warcraft’s 5.4 patch

It's a patch!  Hide your class abilities quickly!

It’s one of the last patches of World of Warcraft’s Mists of Pandaria expansion, and that means one more set of adjustments to the game’s classes. You could, naturally, assume that all of the changes are being made because Blizzard hates your favorite class and loves your least favorite class. Or you could take a look at the most recent development post detailing why class abilities are being changed for better or worse.

While the changes for each class are different, all of the classes have had several unappealing talents improved and a few overpowered talents toned down a bit. There are also several changes based on situational power — Holy Paladins, for example, had too much mana when able to get into melee and too little mana when forced to stay at range. If you want to see how your class fared in this round of rebalancing, take a look at the full rundown before posting your rant about being horribly nerfed.

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comments

MyPetMonkeyWowadin6969

I think they should do two things, both could help a lot.

1) like the ony raid, make some vanilla and BC raids relevant again with lvl 90 options. Bring back AQ, Karazan, black temple etc. Bring back some of the vanilla feel, and players, as well as new content of course. .

2) Add 1 more class. There will always be what some consider an OP class or two, but not everyone plays them. There’s 11 to choose from now. Make it 12. Spread the playing field. Less people will be playing the OP class. Also, most classes have a weakness to one other class. Spread the playing field and OP won’t be an issue. It’s not hard to find the best or most OP player in the BG or arena and kill it. Kill it’s healer, and outplay that person.

The pvp and pve balance really isn’t an issue. All you do is play a lot, do the right quests, save your points, get the right gear and over time, any class can do 100k + dps. How much more do you need? If you want to be the guy in the raid that bursts 700k dps, then play as much as he does.

On a side note, I really liked the old talent system with all the options and pickin between different specs.

What do you guys think?

RatbaconRatbacon

It staggers me that people still play this. Compared to the frankly obscene amounts of cash they rake in on a monthly basis, the amount of content they offer back in updates is criminal by modern standards.

When they finally get off their lazy backsides and do something then they fuck around with the classes and do precious little else.

You get what you deserve and more and more I have come to the conclusion that the gaming community deserves to get fucked over by Blizzard. Repeatedly.

Blizzard trademark hints at next World of Warcraft or Diablo III expansion

Diablo III

According to the ever-churning rumor mill, Blizzard Entertainment may be on the cusp of announcing a new expansion to World of Warcraft or Diablo III. The studio has just snagged a new trademark for The Dark Below and identified that trademark as “computer game software” and “downloadable electronic game.”

The trademark could be for a new game or unannounced IP, but it’s more likely the title of an upcoming expansion to one of Blizzard’s big existing titles. Smart money is on Diablo III, since Blizz did tease its August 21st Gamescom press conference by saying it would, “capture the attention of the Heavens, Burning Hells, and all the shadowed places that lie between.” We also know that Blizzard plans to show off a brand new cinematic at Gamescom — cinematics tend to come with either new games or new expansions.

Attach:

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New FFXIV:That Men Can Ride Unicorns in Style Too

FFXIV Unicorn 1 New FFXIV:Screenshots Show that Men Can Ride Unicorns in Style Too

During the latest Final Fantasy XIV A Realm Reborn Letter from the Producer Live, Producer and Director Naoki Yoshida introduced the new Unicorn mount that will be available through the conjurer class questline.

Today Square Enix released two screenshots, that you can see above and below, portraying the mounts. Even if in fantasy literature Unicorns can be ridden only by maidens, looks like in Eorzea things are more geared towards gender equality, as men can ride unicorns too, as you can see from the screenie below.

That’s conforting, I guess…

FFXIV Unicorn 2 New FFXIV:Screenshots Show that Men Can Ride Unicorns in Style Too

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Final Fantasy XIV Doesn’t Need A Phoenix Down

Final Fantasy logo 600x250 Final Fantasy Doesn’t Need A Phoenix Down, ‘Fans’ Do.

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It’s getting tiring to hear so-called avid fans dictate how much life a certain video game franchise has left in it, or determine if it has any at all.

Square-Enix is probably getting annoyed about hearing it too, because every time they release a new Final Fantasy installment, thousands of negative and offensive voices are sprawling out on social media and forums, and maybe some individuals within the development team are reluctant to go back to the drawing board and assess issues that will catapult them to make a better game.

Truth be told, director Hironobu Sakaguichi and the rest of the developers of the first Final Fantasy game never had this problem because they went in with an idea that probably would have failed. At the time, the company known as Square were creating a lot of games that just weren’t making hits, so they made Final Fantasy thinking it’d be their last try, but it turns out to be the beginning of the company’s luxurious career.

With an assortment of characters, an interesting take on battling enemies and a storyline to boot, Final Fantasy games sold like hotcakes and ice cream during the ’90s as the game industry made its giant transfer from cartridge to disc-based entertainment. However, each one was different. Final Fantasy VI, VII, VIII, IX, X and so on…all versions of the series had undergone some type of change—something that many feel is the root of the series’ poison.

Final Fantasy XIV A Realm Reborn Walkthrough3 570x320 Final Fantasy Doesn’t Need A Phoenix Down, ‘Fans’ Do.
Like many angry fans, this idea seems to have been advocated by Wired writer Chris Kohler, who asserted that Final Fantasy is dead due to the lack of original creators, the decline in sales and of course a somewhat valid take of ‘the fatal turn’ at Final Fantasy X-2 release.

“The problem with X-2 is that it taught Square-Enix that a Final Fantasy product with all the corners cut away would still sell, and thus began the Great Cheapening,” Kohler wrote.

“Final Fantasy X-2 was the breaking of the seal, a recognition that Square Enix could use the name without doing any of the work. And it was only after years of such beatdowns and the release of Final Fantasy XIII that, upon the appearance of the inevitable Final Fantasy XIII-2, I played it for an hour or so and was just defeated; it was the first major console release of a Final Fantasy game that I just couldn’t bring myself to play.”

While the argument that Final Fantasy X-2 gave Square-Enix the idea to compose something without even trying is plausible, the other half of his argument stating that this further spurred, in his opinion, horrid projects like Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII, the movie Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children and Dirge of Cerebrus: Final Fantasy VII is highly absurd. Aside from the fact that these Final Fantasy VII expansion experiences were well-received by fans and the media, its broadened storyline upheld the qualitative style that Kohler says the series lacks. If anything, Final Fantasy X-2 should be praised for giving Square-Enix the idea to improve on the experience of their titles, hence Final Fantasy XIII-2 and Final Fantasy IV: The After Years.

final fantasy 8 570x427 Final Fantasy Doesn’t Need A Phoenix Down, ‘Fans’ Do.
Kohler is also wrong on the apparent death of Final Fantasy due to the lack of the original creators present through the development of later installments. While I have earlier expressed that the lack of Hiranobu Sakaguchi, Nobuou Uematsu and Yoshitaka Amano may have been a bad business move on their behalf, it should be noted that their visions of Final Fantasy games have since been taken into account and expanded upon long after their unfortunate departure from the company. I would like to think that these three masterminds of role-playing games have not only influenced other developers, programmers and directors within Square-Enix to make better games, but it should also be noted that non-Square role-playing games have bit off from much of their original concepts, thus the Final Fantasy series remains alive to this day as the go-to game for all role-playing gamer’s needs.

Lastly, the argument of the distaste for constant change is what really seems to be causing a lot of stir not only within Kohler, but within many individuals who claim to be so-called fans of the hit series. Forums and YouTube comments are flooded with phrases like “Final Fantasy was dead when they released XIII,” “Final Fantasy IX was the last of this great series. Screw Final Fantasy X!” or my personal favorite “OMG, FF7 is overrated, I want a remake of FF6.”

These ‘die-hard’ fans are in the right in expressing their opinions about which Final Fantasy is their favorite, but stating a huge hate for another edition with or without any real reasoning behind it leads us to the source of why there is this negative stigma surrounding this very topic. The turn based battle system may switch to a Kingdom Heart’s free-roam style, the linear story may not have any side quests and the characters, deviating away from their SNES-sprite counterparts, will more and more resemble members of a K-pop boy band.

original1 570x320 Final Fantasy Doesn’t Need A Phoenix Down, ‘Fans’ Do.
If fans are so set on keeping their nostalgia alive in today’s generation, then they should wholeheartedly share it with the world like they’ve already been doing. However, times have changed and the idea of revamping or reinvigorating a series by using new game structure and today’s technology shouldn’t be the primary reason as to why anyone would think that Final Fantasy has gone to hell and died. If anything, it has improved and will continue to do so—Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn and the newly crowned Final Fantasy XV is proof of that.

The fact that there is a raging decline in annual sales with every release of the franchise is scary. However, fans must remain confident in Square-Enix to take those numbers to heart and reassess some of their core values in order to deliver an even greater project than before—at least that’s what any true fan would do.  They don’t need another developer handling the franchise and they certainly don’t need make the game become something it clearly isn’t. If anything, a simple talk with the creators ought to help SE employees with some inspiration and possibly a new-found drive, but this isn’t to say that they have lost hope.

World of Warcraft film teaser debuts at SDCC

Warcraft Movie

Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures created something of a stir at this year’s San Diego Comic Con by reportedly debuting a teaser trailer for the long-anticipated World of Warcraft movie. The trailer featured a human warrior and an angry orc and apparently was set in Hellfire Peninsula, also known as “that horrible place I dragged my Mage through levels 60-63.”

Actual filming begins in 2014, with director Duncan Jones referring to the teaser as more of a “mood piece.” The film, titled simply Warcraft, will feature a mix of live-action and computer-generated effects.

And no, the trailer doesn’t seem to be available anywhere online. This Mountain Dew commercial is probably close enough, though.   If you chat to learn more about Wow Powerleveling message.

World of Warcraft:The Characters of Warcraft

The heroes and villains of Warcraft stand larger than life, even in a world engulfed by constant conflict. Below, we’ve collected the personal histories and war stories of Azeroth’s paragons. Will you fight beside them, follow them…or topple them?    If you chat to learn more about Wow Power leveling message.

On the Frontline

Varian
WrynnVarian, a one-time gladiator and current leader of the human kingdom of Stormwind, is the military commander of the Alliance.

Garrosh

HellscreamGarrosh Hellscream, Warchief of the Horde, is a living testament to the dangers of unchecked aggression.

Lei

ShenThe primordial Thunder King has returned to fulfill his life’s work: rebuilding the dynasty of his monstrous race on the continent of Pandaria.

Vol’jin

Vol’jin of the Darkspear trolls is a valiant warrior, Shadow Hunter, and, increasingly, a voice of wisdom amongst a Horde in turmoil.

Wrathion

Wrathion is one of the few remaining black dragons on Azeroth, and his perspective on the world’s future is fittingly… unique.

Moira

ThaurissanAs Queen-Regent of the Dark Iron Clan, Moira is determined to prove her worth to the other dwarf clans and the Alliance.