Posts Tagged ‘World of Warcraft’

Wife or Orc? Man forced to choose.

Monday, January 11th, 2010

Orc breakups are messy.

Robert Cushnie, 42, had some big decision making to make last week when his spouse forced him to choose between his geekyness over her ladyness. Canadian wife Dee, 42, asked him to please get rid of his 6 foot tall World of Warcraft-ish ‘Orc’ statue that had shared a home with him for 6 years, or she was high tailing it back to her homelands without him.

The late night telecommunications manager explained “It came down to the wife or the Orc, she said there wasn’t any room for him in our life. I’ve had him for six years but Dee means more to me, so he had to go.”

Dee says: “I just don’t like it. I’m only 5ft 3in, so it towers over me, which is quite creepy.”

So now distraught Robert, of Aberdeen, has been forced to have his giant toy that he acquired from a Falkirk toy shop adopted.

Dee and Robert married last February and will move to Canada later this month, without the Orc statue. The Orc was able to find a good home with Aberdeen’s Michael Thomson, 61, and GOOD wife Patricia, 55 (we named her that).

Robert quotes: “I’ll miss him – but I’m glad he’s gone to a good home.”

We at strongly discourage this type of radical behavior and should be avoided at all costs. In the event that you run across this hurdle, please mail us all of your wife/husband hated nerd paraphernalia. We will honorably put them to use at our partys, events and social drinking engagements.


WoW gets BG friendy with Dungeon Finder queue!

Friday, December 18th, 2009
WoW Random Dungeon Queue gives badges!

WoW Random Dungeon Queue gives badges!

World of Warcraft just got more Busy Gamer friendly. Now that the new dungeon finder has been in use for a little while, I think it’s safe to say that it has made playing WoW with a busy schedule much more productive.

Basically, the Dungeon Finder puts players together in automatic groups across server lines. This means, of course, that there are now exponentially more players looking for the dungeon you are looking for. Unlike the previous incarnation of the automatic group maker, the Dungeon Finder has you select the role you will fill and it only forms groups with all roles filled. You can also select the random dungeon option, (which most of the time means you will be in a group nearly instantaneously) and gain bonus perks such as Emblems of Frost, gold, and a chance at getting a special non-combat pet. And forget about flying to dungeons or summoning. When you use the Dungeon Finder, you will be ported there automatically once your group is ready.

The full details of the Dungeon Finder can be found here, but the highlights of the new system for those of us playing on a time crunch are as follows:

º Less time spent trying to put together a group because there is a greater pool of potential players, and no need to spend a lot of time pst-ing back and forth with would be group members.

º No travel time to dungeons.

º The added bonus of being able to run a dungeon and make some money at the same time instead of having to chose one or the other.

º You and a friend can join as a group if you choose- you get to run with your buddy without having to spend a lot of time putting together the rest of the group.

º In my experience, most of the time you are in a group within three minutes of getting in the Dungeon Finder queue.

º My unscientific estimate is that I can now run three PUG dungeons in the time it took me to put together and complete one. (This is assuming no use of guildies or friends in my group assembly.) This makes my time far more productive which in turn makes my gear far more respectable.

Author Rika Stead by Jim Brown

Author Rika Stead by Jim Brown

One thing that has been getting some complaints in the forums is that you don’t get to check gear on your group members. Personally, this doesn’t concern me much. To be a truly good player you need to have some experience making up for weaker players. And a lot of the time, people checking gear for dungeons seem to be inordinately fixated on that. I can heal heroics with Shard of the Virtuous on (and thats experience talking, sadly, not hypothetical) but a player who no one will give a chance to can’t run anything. If you are a “non-hardcore” player with not as good gear this is advantageous to you because you won’t be turned down to take someone with better gear. I have seen some horror stories about parties heavy on grossly undergeared players, but personally I haven’t yet encountered a situation that the other players were unable to compensate for.

The only major concern I have is that dungeoning across servers may effect how players find and form guilds in the long term. Meeting other players by running pug dungeons has always been the basic way to meet other people you enjoy playing with. Now we are running most of the time with people who we can’t stay in contact with and what that means remains to be seen.

What does your gaming Avatar say about you?

Monday, November 30th, 2009
Black/White robed avatars exhibited more aggressive behaviors..

Black/White robed avatars exhibited more aggressive behaviors..

( – The characters that video-game users choose for themselves, their avatars, can affect their thoughts and emotions in those virtual environments, whether it’s Mario or Luigi or the colors of a football uniform, according to research by a University of Texas communication-studies professor.

In two similar experiments, assistant professor Jorge Pena found that gamers using negative avatars, such as those wearing black cloaks, exhibited aggressive and antisocial behaviors in team exercises. The study, “The Priming Effects of Avatars in Virtual Settings,” will be published in the December issue of Communication Research, a national publication.

The first experiment randomly assigned either black- or white-robed avatars to gamers playing “Jedi Knight II.” The second experiment assigned gamers roles as Ku Klux Klan members or physicians in a virtual museum. The control group was assigned transparent figures.

Participants in both experiments were asked to write a story about an ambiguous picture or were asked to make decisions with virtual team members dealing with problems that arose during the game.

Subjects using the black-robed and KKK avatars consistently exhibited negative, aggressive and antisocial behaviors, Pena said.

“What’s interesting here is not only did using the avatar in the dark uniform affect a negative attitude and point to individual problems, but also showed less group cohesion,” he said.

Pena said that when the participants using the KKK and black-robed avatars were asked to describe an ambiguous picture, their stories dealt with murder, revenge and scorn and did not incorporate any relationships, as opposed to those who used the doctor-like or white-robed avatars.

The effects were automatic and usually unconscious to the user, Pena said.

“Situations queue people’s behaviors, and they go with the flow,” he said.

“It’s more than just in video games,” he said, adding that people can be primed negatively in a variety of environments.

Pena said similar studies of the effects of video-game avatars have found that primed behaviors can be carried beyond the virtual environment into the user’s daily life.

He said some games, such as “EverQuest” and “World of Warcraft,” depend on the dynamics of communication and said his research may help game designers be aware of the effects of avatars on those dynamics.

Nicholas Merola, a communication-studies graduate student who co-wrote the study with Pena, said it’s important for game designers to have the knowledge from the study, especially when designing games for younger players, who can build on their cooperation skills through such games.

Coleman Stewart, a UT sophomore majoring in linguistics, said he has been a gamer for 12 years. He plays online multiplayer games, such as “Counter-Strike,” up to four hours a day.

Avatars ,and what they may say about a gamer’s real-world character, are a common talking point in the gaming world, said Stewart, who did not participate in Pena’s study.

Stewart said that in “Counter-Strike,” which is a first-person shooter game, there are terrorist and counterterrorist avatars. Stewart said gamers in both groups tend to be equally negative in their communication with other players.

“Mostly, it’s just people being negative about almost everything, people who mess up in the slightest, people who do things wrong, people that get in other people’s way, etcetera,” he said.

Stewart said that in “World of Warcraft,” which he also plays, there are obvious distinctions between good guys, the Alliance, and bad guys, the Horde.

The trash talk involves calling gamers who side with the Horde “antisocial, mouth-breathing rejects that live in their mom’s basement,” Stewart said. “But some people, myself included, are of the opinion that it really doesn’t matter what faction you are” because everyone can be a jerk.

“The choice of avatar is not the only way you can judge someone,” Stewart said. “I’ve met some really nice undead rogues and some really annoying Draeni mages.”

[Original Article Here at]

WoW Movie: The Rise of the Lich King

Wednesday, October 14th, 2009
We vote Kristen Bell should be cast as the Blood Elf...WoW!

We vote Kristen Bell should cast as the Blood Elf...WoW!

Sam Raimi’s project Warcraft that’s making recent headlines and due for release in 2011, has now been subtitled “The Rise of the Lich King.” The title somewhat indicates that the film would chronicle the Lord of the Rings-ish story of Arthas Menethil, a benevolent paladin prince corrupted by the runeblade Frostmourne and turned into an undead lord.

Blizzard Entertainment had not commented on the Warcraft movie’s storyline. However, Raimi was all too happy to talk to MTV News about his vision for the film’s plot, which he says will be true to the game franchise’s spirit.

Raimi says:
“We want to be really faithful to the game…to the Horde and the Alliance and the mythology that takes place in the game, and the archetypes that the game presents,” Raimi said. “I think we would try and find touchstones within the game to make it accurate and true and choose one or some of the lands that are portrayed in the game with as much accuracy and authenticity as possible.”

Raimi also revealed that the Warcraft movie will have the same screenwriter who won an Oscar nomination for 1997′s Saving Private Ryan. “We would have our writer, Robert Rodat, really craft an original story within that world that feels like a World of Warcraft adventure,” said Raimi. “Only obviously it’s very different ’cause it’s expanded and translated into the world of a motion picture.” Rodat also penned the screenplays for Fly Away Home (1996) and The Patriot (2000).

We still have no casting clues leads, were hoping for hot blood elves that look like Kristen Bell and please stay away from anything that acts like Dolph Lundgren.


-BG Crew

PAX ’09 Coverage: WoW Cataclysm, Azeroth gets a makeover

Wednesday, September 9th, 2009
You won't make fun of us for much longer. Goblin Crotch Punch, Activate!

You won't make fun of us for much longer. Goblin Crotch Punch, Activate!

One of the highlights of the Penny Arcade Expo this year was the playable demo of World of Warcraft: Cataclysm. At least it was for the Reckon Crew since we’re big WoW nerds. We were able to play with both of the new playable races a bit and sat through the video Blizzard has put together showcasing some of the new features that will come with the expansion.




Two new playable races will be available with Cataclysm, the Goblins, who will join the Horde, and the Worgen who have decided to join with the Alliance. The Goblins you already know if you’ve been to the majority of the neutral cities scattered throughout the world of Azeroth. Engineering gurus, the Goblins racial abilities will be based on the technology they create. The first item, a rocket belt, will allow you to leap forward a great distance, similar to a warrior’s charge or more closely resembling the pounce ability of druids in cat form. They are also able to summon an assistant of sorts which allows them to access their bank slots.

The Worgen may be perhaps a little less known, having languished in the southern portion of Silverpine, the Greymane Wall, for some time since Burning Crusades became available. The Worgen are a group of humans with a terrible curse, that of lycanthropy. The quest for their humanity is foremost for the player when beginning in their starting area, eventually leading to the control of the curse. Able to take human form at will, the Worgen are unable to overcome their animal side when angered, changing into their wolf-like form when attacked or when initiating combat. Most notable of their racial abilities is a Sprint ability that is accessible in the wolf form.

Look, we're a couple, get over it. We have our differences but flea powder will always bring us together.

Look, we're a couple, get over it. We have our differences but flea powder will always bring us together.

The story behind the events leading to the Cataclysm is that an ancient evil has risen from the depths of the Maelstrom. That’s the hurricane looking thing in the center of the map of Azeroth you’ve been staring at for the past five years if you weren’t sure. The ancient evil is none other than Deathwing himself, the most fearsome of the Aspects, the Dragonflights charged with protecting Azeroth. Somewhere along the line, Deathwing went mad and sought to conquer the other flights and has been hiding, or perhaps slumbering, for several hundred years.

As Deathwing is unleashed on the world, the face of Azeroth is changed by the destructive energy of his escape. The Barrens has been ripped in two by a fiery chasm, entire forests have been burned to the ground, and the islands near the Maelstrom have become unsafe. While much of the land is visited by destruction, some areas appear to have become fertile. Desolate areas such as… Desolace have become lush forests, life returning in force to those places that barely sustained it before the event.

The level cap will be raised to 85, a move sure to disappoint some players who feel they’ve barely had time to experience the Wrath of the Lich King content. Yeah, all that purple gear you’ve been collecting? There’s going to be some new greens that make your gear look like the attire of a country bumpkin.

Flying mounts will be able to take advantage of the new landscape, allowing players who have flying mounts to view the destruction and regrowth of Kalimdor and the Eastern Kingdoms from on high. And apparently the event will inspire the existing races of Azeroth to take up new professions. Human Hunters, Blood Elf Warriors, Dwarf Shaman, Tauren Paladins, the list goes on. Don’t get your hopes up too much though. Rogues still don’t allow anything with hooves to join the guild.

There’s a new profession in the works, archaeology. While there is little information in regards to the new profession, it apparently allows players to discover and use ancient devices and technologies that have been dormant until the recent events. Overhauls are in the works for the existing crafting professions, providing a much needed boost to the lower level items they create rather than just grinding through for skill points.

It’s been stated by Blizzard that there will be a minor upgrade to the graphics engine, however, if it was in place for the playable demo, I couldn’t see any major differences. There is an announced underwater area which was unavailable in the content we played through so perhaps that is where we will be seeing the upgrades.

Announced on the WoW site is overhauls for existing dungeons including level 85 heroic versions of Shadowfang Keep and the Deadmines. Hopefully, the overhaul will include upgraded content for some of the older dungeons as well.

While we had to manage our time and only saw a portion of what was offered by Blizzard at PAX ’09, we were impressed with what we saw. There are currently only rumors of a launch date for the new expansion but we’re hoping for just a bit longer with Wrath of the Lich King before Blizzard swallows our souls all over again.


Gritskrieg – End of Line

The Top 5 Games Gritskrieg shouldn’t be allowed to play… Ever.

Monday, August 31st, 2009

It’s an understatement to say that I love games. It would be more to the point to say that I *live* games. I love the storylines, the graphics, the gameplay and each game comes with its own unique “flavor” which may or may not keep me coming back for more. And then there are those games which appeal to some portion of my psyche and latch onto me, refusing to release me from its diabolical grip. These are the games I love to play but shouldn’t be allowed to play.

The list below comprises some of the most insidious games I’ve played in the recent past. Each one has its own draw and while I am not telling anyone to avoid these games, I am advising caution… Because if you’re anything like me, they’ll consume large portions of your free time without you realizing it until you glance up at the clock and realize you’ve been playing for the last four hours straight. Which may explain why your bladder is hurting and you’re starving.

When I play these games, I find myself bargaining with the clock. I only need three hours of sleep, right? I can catch a later movie. My friends won’t be that mad if I show up a little late. I can always get a haircut tomorrow. And that’s why I avoid some games like the plague. Not because I don’t like them but because I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that once I play that first little bit, I’m going to be in for the long haul.

So, for better or worse, here is my list of five games which I should not be allowed to play in reverse order.

What do you do after you collect all the bobbleheads in Fallout 3?

What do you do after you collect all the bobbleheads in Fallout 3?

#5 Fallout 3 – I’ve beat this game. I’ve bought and played through every expansion. I’ve even collected every single bobblehead. There shouldn’t be anything left to do and yet somehow, magically, I find things to do. Most recently I have begun decorating my home in the Wastelands. And no, I don’t mean buying one of the schemes. I’m talking about wandering the wastes looking for things that will look good on my bookshelf. I have become a post-apocalyptic interior designer. I find something I like, I take it home, I drop it from my inventory and then meticulously place it somewhere in my home. And because I have to have things set up a certain way, I may decide I need another of whatever it is I just used in my home and so back out into the wastelands I go. And every time I head out for more decorations, I find another portion of the map I haven’t fully explored, another quest I haven’t done, another *something* to keep me playing “just another 30 minutes”. (more…)

New World of Warcraft Expansion “Cataclysm”

Monday, August 24th, 2009
We're ready to goblin dance all over your dead gnome.

We're ready to goblin dance all over your dead gnome.

Blizzard Entertainment’s annual “BlizzCon” event was in full swing this past weekend, and the first major announcement is the revelation of a new expansion pack for World of Warcraft called “Cataclysm”.

“Soon, Deathwing the Destroyer will return to Azeroth, and his eruption from Deepholm will sunder the world, leaving a festering wound across the continents,” reads the press release. Deathwing is a mighty dragon hidden in a secluded sanctuary.

The expansion is to feature two new races: the werewolf-like worgen, a new race aligned with the Alliance, and the goblins, playing with the Horde. The level cap has been raised to 85 and the “classic zones” have been altered and updated with new content. More raid content will be added, along with new race and class combinations, such as gnome priests, blood elf warriors and more. Guilds can also progress to earn advancements, levels and achievements. New Player vs Player (PvP) objectives and new rated Battleground areas are also on the roster along with a new secondary profession “archeology” that lets you unearth artifacts and earn unique rewards.

We’ll also see the the ability to explore Kalimdor and the Eastern Kingdoms using flying mounts.

Blizzard notes that there will be “incremental tweaks and updates” to the graphics engine in Cataclysm that will require some increases to the game’s minimum system requirements, but it refrained from identifying what those requirements will be.

No release date has been noted yet for the new expansion.

-BG Crew

Check out more about Cataclysm at World of Warcraft’s Web site.

Warcraft, yeah we read the articles

Thursday, August 20th, 2009


Publisher Future has teamed up with WoW developer Blizzard Entertainment for quarterly title World of Warcraft: The Magazine.

Available in English, French, German and Spanish, the publication is sold via subscription only through World of Warcraft Account Management or from the mag’s official site.

The magazine is available as a one or two-year subscription, pricing for one year is US$39.95, 34.95 EUR or 29.95 GBP depending on your region — two year subscription packages cost $69.95 in the US, 61.25 EUR or 52.50 GBP.

“Future produces some of the most respected gaming magazines in the industry, and we’re pleased to be working closely with them to make World of Warcraft: The Magazine a true standout product,” says Blizzard COO Paul Sams. “Together, we look forward to offering World of Warcraft players a great mix of entertaining and insightful content in every issue.”

The 148-page first issue will cover the fifth anniversary of World of Warcraft.

Ozzy to headline Blizzcon!

Tuesday, August 11th, 2009
Blizzcon is getting on the Crazy Train!

Blizzcon is getting on the Crazy Train!

( – The Prince of Darkness, and World of Warcraft spokesman, Ozzy Osbourne will be headlining the closing concert at this year’s BlizzCon, Activision announced today.

“Our goal with BlizzCon is to deliver an unforgettable weekend of entertainment, and we can’t think of a better way to close out this year’s show than having Ozzy rock the house,” said Mike Morhaime, CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment. “Many of us at Blizzard are lifelong fans of Ozzy’s music, and we’re thrilled that he’ll be performing for all of our BlizzCon attendees as well as those joining us via DIRECTV and the live Internet stream.”

The performance will kick off on Aug. 22, the last of the two day convention about all things Blizzard, but most things World of Warcraft.

Tickets to the event sold out in minutes, but if you’re hard pressed to catch some live coverage of the event and see Ozzy’s performance, it will be streamed both on DIRECTV and online for a price.

[Full article at]

Warcraft new add-on, ‘In Game Therapy’

Wednesday, July 29th, 2009
Warcraft addict as depicted by South Park (lols)

Warcraft addict as depicted by South Park (lols)

London based psychiatrist Dr. Richard Graham is so concerned about MMO addiction that he plans to provide some “in-game therapy” for those who spend a large portion of their lives “lost in the virtual world of World of Warcraft”. And by “lost” we mean suffering from what he believes is ‘excessive online gaming’. Plus he’d like Blizzard to give up some free logins.

London’s ‘The Telegraph’ talked to Dr. Graham, who is planning by the end of the year to linger around Azeroth and provide counseling to at-risk distraught elves, orcs, and taurens (oh my). “I think it’s already clear that psychiatrists will have to stay within the parameters of the game. They certainly wouldn’t be wandering around the game in white coats and would have to use the same characters available to other players,” the Doc says.

Graham also quotes, “One problem we’re going to have to overcome is that while a psychiatrist may excel in what they do in the real world, they’re probably not going to be very good at playing World of Warcraft. We may have to work at that if we are going to get through to those who play this game for hours at end.”

How effective could this be? I dunno, if the docs are gamers they will probably love immersing themselves in Azeroth. If not they will not really understand, nor be able to make connections to gamers that are highly active. WoW players are on because they want to be, not because they are chained to their computers. Whether this is healthy or not, I think their are bigger therapy sessions to propagate.

I’d like to see em survive ‘Barrens Chat’. That’s a good place to start.


-BG Crew