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The QueueJun 1, 2015 11:00 am CT

The Queue: Proving Grounds, a darker Warcraft, and Chinese take-out

Welcome back to The Queue, our daily Q&A feature! Have a question for the Blizzard Watch staff? Leave it in the comments and we may choose it for tomorrow’s edition!


What’s the point of making people’s alt toons also prove themselves in the Proving Ground before being able to queue in LFD?

I recently levelled a mage to 100 and wanted to get them into some of the tavern quests – Aviana’s Feather, Oralius’ Whispering Crystal – but because of reasons* I can’t get past Wave 8 of Silver.

I’ve done all the dungeons and most of the achieves on my DPS main already, so what’s the point of making me suffer through Proving Grounds as DPS again before I can join the LFD queue?

* I’m bad at mage-ing, I admit it. Can’t even blame their super squishiness here.

Just because you know how to play one class doesn’t mean you know how to play another. Your skill on a rogue, for example, does not necessarily translate to a priest. In your case, you say you’re bad at playing a mage — that’s a good indicator you ought to learn more about how to play it. Personally, I don’t think the Proving Grounds are a great indicator of skill for all classes; some classes find the Proving Grounds easier than others entirely due to which skills are available to that class/spec. I haven’t done it on a mage, but I know I found it more difficult on a rogue than on a paladin, though I could do it on both — and maybe others found it easy as pie on a rogue, who knows.

The usefulness of the Proving Grounds is also questionable since you don’t need to do it to get into LFR, which provides better gear than dungeons, but it is what it is.


Do you think WoW would be served by taking a turn for a more darker, dramatic theme then us good guys versus those bad guys?  I’m still partial to the idea of losing in this expansion in order to have then next one deal with the ramifications.  AKA: The Burning Legion wins this round and takes the fight to Azeroth.  The Horde and the Alliance have their backs against the wall in a fight or die expansion.

I wouldn’t necessarily describe that as dark — dark is often used as the word to describe really gross stuff. Brutality and nastiness I won’t talk about here. I think what you’re talking about is us simply not stomping across every villain we meet. Ups and downs are both part of a good narrative. If it’s all ups, you stop feeling threatened by the antagonists. If it’s all downs, you eventually hit the point where you feel burnt out, and you either get mad at the narrative or stop caring altogether. I do think Blizzard’s narrative would benefit from a few more of those downs in the central arc. The Alliance-specific narrative seems to be an endless string of downs (resulting in anger in some, apathy in others), but the game’s overall narrative — especially in Warlords of Draenor — seems totally lacking in them. We win, we win, we win, the bad guy taunts us a little bit despite losing over and over again, and then we win some more. When we lose something, it’s off-screen and we never see it.

The warlords in Warlords of Draenor were hilariously ineffective. Eventually, one of the bad guys needs to truly pull one over on us or they’ll continue to be jokes rather than villains.


Any chance we see our flying mounts as a “transmog” for the taxi? This might be a decent compromise for lack of flying.

I doubt anyone would see this as a compromise, but I think it’d be cool nonetheless. Let our own mounts fly us on flight paths, remove the cost of using said flight paths.


Why, since I love Thai and Japanese food, does Chinese food underwhelm me so much?

I assume you’re talking about Chinese take-out in the US. That stuff is made to be bland. The menus usually put enormous, bold warnings on anything that uses spicy, advising you that it’s very spicy. But it’s rarely spicy. That’s because Chinese take-out is essentially fast food, and fast food aims to cater to a wide audience. Fast food never has spicy food because most Americans don’t eat spicy food. The food must be inoffensive for the sake of popularity. Even a little spice is unpleasant to most people. Thai food is more niche, so they can get away with using more spice, and the sort of people who will go for Thai know it’s going to be spicy. There’s a reason Chinese sitdown restaurants often have bottles of sriracha all over the place. They make it bland and you can kick it up if you want to do that.

Even the spiciest thing on a fast food restaurant menu isn’t going to be very spicy. Wendy’s recently added some ghost pepper items to their menu and it’s probably the spiciest fast food you’ll find, but that isn’t saying much.

I love me some  Chinese food, but I often select the things marked spicy and squirt chili sauce into it.


So I just watched the Garrosh/Thrall fight cinematic again, and I have to ask, what the f— was Thrall’s giant balls necklace supposed to be anyway?

I mean, he was wearing that silly necklace for a couple expansions. It couldn’t have been comfortable.

Was there any explanation for this bizarre fashion choice? Is there any model available to the player that looks like that? What’s your headcanon about the giant ball necklace?

They’re prayer beads. Enormous prayer beads. Blizzard’s aesthetic style is to take one or two iconic items and make them enormous. Thrall, Diablo 3’s Monk, and Overwatch’s Zenyatta all have those enormous prayer beads.


Am I the only one around here who doesn’t want a Burning Legion expansion? I mean, I find them interesting and all, but not nearly enough to fill an entire expansion. There’s only so much you can do with “demons in space” and green stuff, y’know?

I’d rather have South Seas.

The Burning Legion, for me, means more than just demons. Much of what I like about them came from The Burning Crusade, I suspect. They have a vibrant and varied color palette, they have a wide range of mob-types, and they have interesting demon technology. The Burning Legion isn’t just imps and eredar. There’s the voidwalkers, succubi, felguards, infernals, demon doggies, beholders, and on and on. That’s more interesting to look at than orcs, orcs, and also orcs. They’re also more interesting to look at than ogres, ogron, goron, gronn, and so on. The Burning Legion is purple, green, red, bright and striking.

They’re the most interesting enemies to look at, and if the developers carry on the Burning Legion standard set by The Burning Crusade, offer a more varied experience than any other villain we’ve dealt with.

And I’d like the South Seas, too. I’d enjoy anything that has an enemy as varied and striking as the Burning Legion was in Burning Crusade.

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