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The QueueNov 3, 2015 11:00 am CT

The Queue: Slouching Towards Anaheim

I’m listening to Brainsaw by Therapy? and writing The Queue. BlizzCon is in a few days.

Let’s talk about Blizzard games, shall we?


QftQ — For the new promo poster for the Warcraft movie, why does Lothar have the skin of a dead Draenei smeared across his face??  Ew.

Assuming you’re not just making a joke, which seems likely to me, it’s just meant to be Alliance Blue. You know, Horde Red, Alliance Blue, that’s all. I don’t even know if we’ll see all that many Draenei in the movie.


Q4tQ: I was talking to my brother last night and we both thought up a question that we can’t find a definitive answer too, so here goes!

How exactly does Stealth work lorewise in WoW? As a Druid you’d think I’d know but it’s actually a seemingly very tricky question to answer!

Stealth in game is literally just being sneaky. That’s it. You’re not Invisible here — which is why Mages who go Invisible are not as easily detectable as Rogues or kitty cats in Stealth. That’s correct, when a Rogue stealths and walks through a dungeon to the very end, skipping all the mobs along the way, that’s just how sneaky she is, and the same goes for anyone else using stealth. This is why any mob has a small chance (depending on comparative level) to detect a stealthed character or mob. That’s also why your chance of being detected in stealth goes up if you’re anywhere in a 180 degree cone in front of someone you’re trying to stealth around.

So really, the lore is very simple. You’re sneaky. That’s it. There’s nothing magical about it, you’ve just mastered the art of not being seen. Yes, I’m aware that you can stealth in broad daylight and thread the needle to ridiculous extremes, but that’s still just due to your ability to just be that sneaky.


Question for the Queue:  From yesterday’s Tavern post, I have to ask “Bob Ross” or “Mr. Rogers” for a surprise boss fight in WoW: Legion?

And … what game mechanic would they use?

Fred Rogers was one of the most genuinely kind human beings I’ve ever heard of. If he existed in WoW, he could talk the Scourge into disbanding. He was actual friends with George Romero.

Bob Ross spent twenty years in the Air Force before deciding to become the gentle painter we’re all familiar with. Frankly, I think if these two were boss fights, they’d be nigh-unbeatable. Rogers would simply befriend the raid, and Ross would distract us with happy little trees.

Rogers would have a mechanic similar to Sanity called “Won’t you be my neighbor?” and yes, you would be his neighbor. Ross would constantly summon Happy Accidents to overwhelm the raid.


Will the opening ceremony of Blizcon be viewable online by everyone even if they haven’t bought a ticket? I seem to remember that being the case last year.


Dinosaurs are pretty awesome. (I felt like you weren’t getting your answer’s worth.)



Legion needs to let people do everything except PvP on their own. Dungeons and Raids should scale from 1-40. Old raids should be added to timewalking. Crafting professions should come with all necessary gathering professions so people can enjoy more than one per character. (Enchanting and Tailoring are good examples, you don’t need to mine cloth or Enchanting Mats.) If you’re a JCer and a Leatherworker, then Skinning and Mining should be complementary with those.

Also, they need to drop Ashbringer and Doomhammer and give every spec a NEW weapon with which to build a legacy. Forget Tirion and Thrall… give their weapons to someone else (Turalyon/Orc2) if they need to give up or die.

Okay, in order:

I don’t agree that Legion should let us do everything solo. It’s an MMO. I’m fine with max level content actually requiring group play, and I think WoW has gone out of its way over the years to make it easier for solo players to at least get into a good chunk of that group content (Dungeon Finder, LFR, the expanded Group Finder) without actually making everything soloable. Frankly, I’m find with it being so that once you’re strong enough you can solo older content, but max level should require you to play with other people.

I think you may have a decent idea about professions. At the least, let Blacksmithing/Engineering/Leatherworking have an ability similar to Disenchanting to gather mats from items that drop. So if you have a piece of armor that dropped from a boss, you could Scavenge it and get usable leather or metal depending on what kind of armor it was.

I’m fine with Pallies and Shamans getting Ashbringer/The Doomhammer. I don’t see why they need to take those out of the Artifact roster.


Everyone always says that Wrath was the best xpack, but they always forget to say why.

New dryad models.

It’s not a coincidence, people!  Dryads = success!

Wrath is a wholly overrated expansion and the more everyone goes on and on about how it was he best expansion ever the less I believe it.

Did I enjoy Wrath? Yeah, but I also suffered through some real BS that expansion. Armor Pen was an intensely annoying stat to balance. Trial of the Crusader was the worst raid they have ever designed, hands down. A round room! And when we blow up the floor, we still end up in another giant room. No hallways, no trash, nothing. There were problems with the storyline, Yogg-Saron is set up as this big rival to Arthas and then he just stops when we go to Ulduar (despite absolutely no one being fooled that the God of Death is dead. He’s not.) and in general, while it was very good, it wasn’t without flaws. I’d legitimately argue that, if not for the content drought after patch 5.4, people today would be talking about Mists of Pandaria as the best expansion.

I would absolutely put it ahead of Wrath.

But that’s just me. At any rate, I’m sure they were very nice Dryad models.


Do you think that the devs can sustain 12 distinctive classes and keep them all interesting or special to play?

I’ve enjoyed the heck out of playing a rogue this expansion, but I’m already feeling the pull toward the DH – being able to tank, have access to lots of cool abilities, and generally still feel somewhat roguish has its appeal. At the same time, I look at other classes that have sort of been allowed to stagnate while others have been introduced or revamped, and wonder how they will weather. To be sure, there are stalwart players of rogues, mages, and warriors, but those classes in particular seem to me to need some help to add interest.

What do you think?


Here’s another picture of a dino… wait, you want more? Oh. Okay.

Look, I’ll be honest with you. If Titan’s Grip is supported by Artifact weapons, then there’s only one interesting, special to play class in WoW for me. If it isn’t, then things get murkier and I’ll probably play a Demon Hunter. That’s just how it is. I love Warriors, I absolutely love Titan’s Grip, and I don’t really care at all about other classes, not even the ones I play like Death Knights or Shaman.

So, when you ask me about if Blizzard’s devs can sustain 12 distinctive classes, well, I have to turn off my player mind and look at it purely as an analytical thinker. And the answer there is yes, they can do so. But there’s always going to be those classes that appeal to you and those that you think need work, and what you think on this subject is not only subjective but bound to disagree with what others think. I wouldn’t agree that Warriors are stagnant at all, but that’s the danger of trying to keep millions of players happy with twelve separate classes.

Nothing is ever perfect. For every player who likes a redesign there will be players who hate it. I’ve had to relearn the Warrior class every expansion for eleven years now. Sometimes I’m afraid that my remembering how Warriors used to play in such detail hampers me from seeing the class as it is now, but I soldier on. We’ll see if Legion manages to hit the mark.


Honestly, WoW is my job, or at least my job requires me to play it, so it’s lost some of that potential to serve as an escape for me. But there have been times over the past eleven years that WoW has served that role for me. Ultimately I generally chose to try and talk to my friends (the few that can tolerate me, anyway) and my wife when I’m feeling that upset. For me it was less Azeroth and my friends in game that served as the refuge.


Okay, that’s the Queue for today. Have another dinosaur.

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Filed Under: Blizzcon, Dinosaurs, Legion

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