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World of Warcraft is one of Activision Blizzard Entertainment's gaming franchises among others in the world next to hit games also produced by Activision Blizzard Entertainment Starcraft, Diablo and Guitar Hero.
Blizzard Entertainment is owned by Vivendi Games which recently merged with Activision creating the world's largest gaming company followed by EA Games. Blizzard Entertainment is also known as Activision Blizzard. World of Warcraft is a highly notable game for many things and it is a popular and highly praised conclusion to the Warcraft I, II and III trilogy.
The Game Environment
There are various classes a person can play in the exciting world of World of Warcraft!
The Death Knight class is the first hero class to be released in World of Warcraft. It came out with the best selling expansion, Wrath of the Lich King. This class unlike others uses a rune system and wears plate armors. A Death Knight can tank without a shield. All Death Knights unlike other classes start at level fifty five.
Druids are a hybrid class. They can perform different roles and shapeshift forms. They can tank (much like a warrior) in a bear form; stealth and fight like a rogue in cat form; a caster in moonkin form; or even be a healer in tree form. Druids are also known for their resurrection ability in combat, Rebirth, once every twenty minutes. A druid is a successful tank as a feral talent tree same for cat form damage-dealing. Ranged casting is best as a balance talent tree and healer as restoration talents.
Hunters are a ranged damage dealer class. They used ranged weapons such as bows, guns and crossbows as a primary damage-dealing source. Hunters also have the ability to tame a beast in the game to be their pet and be their companion (and fight along) during the hunter's adventures in World of Warcraft.
A mage is a ranged magic damage-dealer. They can also have powerful AoE (Area of Effect) abilities as well. A mage can choose to be a Frost, Arcane or Fire caster. A known mage ability is the ability to conjure water (used to regain mana) and food (used to regain health). Mages can specialize in Frost, Arcane or Fire through talents.
Paladins are a hybrid class in World of Warcraft. They can be a damage-dealer through the retribution talent tree, tank through the protection talent tree or even heal through the holy talent tree. Paladins can wear heavy plate armor and carry shields. Paladins are known or being one of the best healers for a single target. Paladins are also one of the classes to have the best ‘buffs’ in the game. (Buffs are combat improvements spells that can be put on self and others).
Priests are powerful healers, healing a single target or even several at once. The main talent trees seen in priests are Holy and Shadow. Being a shadowpriest (Shadow specced priest) allows the ability to turn into a darker avatar, which can aid in a fast mana recovery even while in combat through some abilities.
Rogues are the most known melee (swords, maces, daggers) damage-dealers. Rogues usually are nearby the tank attacking the hostile npc from behind (for the npc cannot block the attacks). Rogues have the ability to open several locked doors or boxes in the game. Rogues are a master of stealth, they can move around with a low chance of the enemy sighting them. Rogues are powerful poison dealers as well.
Shamans are a hybrid class. They can specialize in healing by restoration talents; ranged damage dealing by elemental talents or melee (up-close) damage dealing by enhancement talents. Shamans have the ability to bring forth totems using the power of Air, Water, Earth or Fire. These totems in turn can improve combat various ways.
A warlock enslaves demons. Like hunters a warlock can have a combat pet. Warlocks can get demons known as imps, voidwalkers, succubus, felguard, felhunter, and inferno. They can also enslave a pet for up to five minutes. Warlocks are ranged damage dealers with several DoTs (Damage over Time spells).
A warrior is a melee combat class. They can tank or be a damage-dealer. Warriors use rage instead of mana or energy as other classes do. The warrior class is known for being a highly gear dependent class. They can carry shields, plate armor and any weapon in the game (except wands).
There are several exciting professions in World of Warcraft. To the World of Warcraft community there are three types of professions, Secondary, Gathering and Crafting. Characters are allowed only a total of two professions in World of Warcraft. On top of the two professions they’re allowed all four secondary professions.
Crafting professions can craft useful items such as necklaces, armor, or even potions to use in combat.
Hostile humanoids around World of Warcraft can drop cloth. Tailors in turn use this cloth to craft armor in the quality of cloth items. Mostly mages, priests and warlocks use cloth armor. Tailors are also known for being able to craft bags with six, eight, twelve, fourteen, sixteen, eighteen or twenty slots for characters can store items in. Tailoring is not dependent on any gathering profession.
Leatherworking is a popular profession for druids, rogues and hunters. Leatherworking is dependent on leather that the gathering profession skinning provides off of beasts around World of Warcraft. The grade of armor a leatherworker usually makes is leather or mail quality. A leatherworker can also make armor kits to improve gear.
Alchemy is a profession dependent on the gathering profession of herbalism. An alchemist can use herbs to brew elixirs, potions and flasks to improve combat. For example they can create a flask to allow somebody to attack faster for a short period of time or increasing the damage dealt.
Jewelcrafting is a new profession in World of Warcraft added with the Burning Crusade expansion. A jewelcrafter is usually dependent on the gathering profession mining to ‘prospect’ ore for gems. In turn a jewelcrafter can cut gems and make rings, necklaces or even certain quality gems to improve gear.
An engineer is dependent on the gathering profession mining to collect ore to smelt into bars. An engineer in turn uses this metal to craft mechanical devices to aid in combat or just for fun as in game ‘toys’. Most engineer made items can only be used by engineers.
A blacksmith is dependent on the gathering profession mining to collect ore and smelt into bars. A blacksmith uses and combines the bars to craft mail or plate quality of armor or weapons.
Enchanting is also called a service profession. There are pieces of armor and weapons around World of Warcraft that has magical energy inside of it. An enchanter extracts this magical energy into dust or shards. In turn they can make current armor or weapons more powerful permanently.
InscriptionInscription is a new profession to be released in the 3.0 patch of World of Warcraft which opened up new things in preparation for the best selling expansion, Wrath of the Lich King. Inscription is the source of glyphs.
There are three gathering professions in World of Warcraft. A gathering profession allows a character to gather resources around World of Warcraft that is used by a crafting profession.
A miner collects ore found in veins around World of Warcraft. Sometimes gems can be found while mining. Miners provide mainly for Blacksmithing, Jewelcrafting and Engineering.
A skinner can skin beasts around World of Warcraft for leather and hides. These in turn are used mainly by leatherworkers to create armor or armor kits.
HerbalismHerbalists harvest herbs around the game world of World of Warcraft. These are primarily used by Alchemists in their brews.
The Fishing ability allows a character to fish in streams, rivers, lakes, canals, oceans and ponds in the game world. These fish are useful with the Cooking profession as well as some parts of the Alchemy profession.
Cooking allows a character to cook meat found off of beasts in the game world or fish fished by the fishing profession. Some food is known to improve combat abilities for a short period of time.
First aid allows a character to use cloth collected around the game world to craft bandages.
Riding is listed as a secondary profession. It doesn’t actually require a player to do anything in game. Riding is a skill ‘purchasable’ by riding trainers in game which in turns allows a player to use a mount. The costs are:
- +35 gold; appetence riding at level 30. Mounts are 60% faster of regular travel speed.
- +600 gold; journeyman riding at level 60. Mounts are 100% faster of regular travel speed.
- +800 gold; expert riding at level 70 (68 for druids at no cost). Riding is 60% of regular travel speed. However this one you have the ability to use a flying mount to fly.
- +1000 gold; cold weather flying. You must have regular flying, this allows you to fly in Nortrend.
- +5000 gold; artisan riding at level 70. Riding is 280% of regular travel speed. This ability requires a flying mount to fly.
There are several factions in the game world of World of Warcraft a person can ally himself or herself to. However since there are two main factions (Horde and Alliance) a character may never become an ally of that faction (always be an enemy).
PvP (Player versus Player)
World of Warcraft has some very popular Player versus Players options in the game. Some realms even allow open attacking of players of the opposite faction. There are battlegrounds in the game where a character can go to ‘war’ with the opposing faction over a disputed territory. There is also an arena system where players fight other players competing for the title of Gladiator and prizes.
There are six battlegrounds in World of Warcraft to date and they are Isle of Conquest, Warsong Gulch, Arathi Basin, Alterac Valley, Eye of the Storm and Strand of the Ancients.
Wintergrasp is a world PvP zone in Northrend. Every so often both factions fight for control of Wintergrasp. If your faction controls Wintergrasp access to the Vault of Archonan is unlocked that houses two bosses that drop tier 7, 7.5, 8 and 8.5 pieces.
Instances / Dungeons
In World of Warcraft a dungeon is often called an instance. This is another ‘zone’ of the game. For example the dungeon Ragefire Chasm is inside a popular Horde city which is a zone called Orgrimmar. In lore retrospect the dungeon Ragefire Chasm is in Orgrimmar, but in dynamics you are zoned to be alone in the dungeon with your group.
There are currently thirty five dungeons in the game that are made for a five person group. Sixteen raids that are made for ten, twenty, twenty five or forty player groups (with Burning Crusade expansion twenty and forty player groups for raids are less common).
There are several class roles in World of Warcraft!
Tanks in World of Warcraft are the damage takers; the hostile npc (non playing character) will usually fight the tank. The tank should always have the highest aggro. Aggro means ‘aggression’; better known as the largest threat to the hostile attacker. A healer usually sustains the tank while the dps (damage dealer) kill the hostile npc.
The job of the tank is to absorb as much damage they can and prevent others in the group from coming under attack. The most common tank classes in World of Warcraft are Warriors (Protection talent specced), Druids (Feral talent specced) and Paladins (Protection talent specced).
A healer has magical energy, which allows them to mend and ease injury in combat. A healer’s main focus is to keep the tank alive throughout the fight(s). Common classes that heal are priests (Holy specced), Paladins (Holy specced), Druids (Restoration specced), Shamans (Restoration specced).
A dps class is also known as a damage dealer. DPS stands for Damage Per Second; but it is referenced to dps as a short common term in the game. All classes in World of Warcraft have an ability to be a damage dealer.
CC stands for Crowd Control. In World of Warcraft sometimes a group has to fight multiple targets. Crowd Control can eliminate the force of the attackers by taking a few npcs out of combat for a short amount of time. Common forms of CC are as follows:
There are other minor forms of Crowd Control as well; many are stuns for a few short seconds.
- +Sap, Incapacitates a target from twenty five to forty five seconds. This ability has to be used before combat starts. This is an ability used by rogues.
- +Polymorph, Transforms a target from twenty seconds to fifty seconds. Polymorph is always a transform to an animal. Sheep are the most common form, followed by pig and turtle. This can be used in combat. This is an ability reserved to mages.
- +Banish, Banishes an enemy target. Prevents the target from all action for twenty through thirty seconds, during this time it will not take damage. Only works on demons and elemental targets. This is an ability reserved to warlocks. This ability is usable in combat.
- +Enslave, Enslaves a demon target up to five minutes. The enslaved target will do the bidding of the warlock until the effect is cancelled. This is an ability reserved to warlocks. This ability is usable in combat.
- +Freezing Trap, this traps a target for twenty to twenty-six seconds. This is an ability used by hunters. This ability is usable in combat.
- +Shackle Undead, a powerful ability used by priests allows an undead target to be taken out of hostile action for thirty to fifty seconds. This ability is usable in combat.
- +Fear, forces an hostile target to flee in fear for a short amount of time (depending on class that uses the ability); usually used by warlocks and priests.
- +Frost Nova, all targets nearby a mage frozen in place for eight to twelve seconds. This ability can be used in combat.
World of Warcraft has a highly developed questing layout. Usually one zone will lead you to the next laying out your leveling and growth experience in the game. Questing is perhaps the best way to level a character from level one to the current level cap of seventy. Quests are known as ‘tasks’ like a mini job, hunting down an item, taking out an enemy or running an errand.
Most quests in World of Warcraft are ‘soloable’ which means you can do it alone without help. Others are group quests that may require you to go to an ‘instance’ also known as a ‘dungeon’ or may just be a group quest to take down a bigger enemy then usual. Some quests are raid quests which requires ten or twenty five people to take down a boss in an ‘instance’/‘dungeon’
Blizzard Entertainment has been awarded a number of awards regarding it’s franchises; the following list are the awards awarded to their hit game, the world’s most popular subscription based game with over ten million players:
- +59th Engineering and Scientific Emmy Awards
- +Massively Multiplayer Game of the Year - Academy of Interactive Arts
- +Visual Effects Society Award
- +Design Award: Best Mac OS X Game
- +Expansion Pack of the Year
- +Expansion Pack of the Year
- +Game Informer's Top 50 of 2007
And many, many others! Click here to view more awards! Also you may click here to view the awards to Blizzard Entertainment from all award winning franchises!
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