Friday, July 6, 2012

Eighth Edition - July 2012

RE-RUN: WoD Herald - Who wants to participate?

If anyone is interested in writing an article for the Herald, message me with your topic, and if it sounds fun, I'll invite you to wow me with your compositional competence!

Simply message me, Jasvyr, in WoD on Caledonii or Aberon to give it a shot! (No guarantee an article will be run, of course...the big guys upstairs have to approve and all...)

As always, happy dungeoneering!

Haiku and Banner Competitions - Winners Decided!

Finally, after a long and arduous judging process (and maybe a, uh, "dropped ball"...or two), the winners for the Haiku and Banner competition have been decided and are ready for your review, fine readers!

Also, this means all those nifty (see: useless) blank haiku in your treasure vaults and cellars are now enchanted!  Go see what you've found!

In the Haiku Competition, we were treated to over forty unique and inspired entries from twenty fine poets, the best of which were singled out below.  All participants will receive a Sha-Jin Haiku.  Those who had their haiku chosen will receive a copy of their haiku, plus 5x Rice Wine and 5x Chop Suey.  The top three haikus selected by our panel will further receive an additional haiku of their choice and a free greater emblem!

Jinxed - First Place - by weekend player
Line Dot Block - Second Place - by Dogtagz
Blood on the Sand - Third Place - by Jasmine
Resolute - by Tacheron
Words Words Words - by Squalor
True Cold - by 137ben
Scholar's Prayer - by Nexxi
Pirate's Vocabulary - by iknowwhoiam
Lamb to the Slaughter - by Edwin
Juggler's Gambol - by SamIAm8
Healer's Banquet - by Captaincritical
Hard as Nails - by Shao`Sa`Vire
Glass Cannon - by shadowice
Divine Protection - by Janaya
Ambush Risks - by Lazarony

The banner competition saw four great submissions by two aspiring artists, with the following three banners being chosen.  Cerise has been awarded a full three months of free premium account time (the equivalent of 150 sapphires)!  Both artists will receive copies of the banners they designed, and the same 5x Rice Wine and 5x Chop Suey as the haiku competition.

Sha-Jin Banner of the Spirits (artwork by cerise)
Sha-Jin Banner of the White Rhino (artwork by Lazarony)
Sha-Jin Banner of the Red Monkey (artwork by cerise)

All winners and contributors should open a trade with Aphelion to claim their prizes.  Please be patient, it may take a week to get the prizes handed out.

Congratulations to all our participants!

RE-RUN: Intra-Clan Leagues

What better way to show the close bond you've developed with your clan-mates than to brutally assault them on a semi-regular basis?

Sign up for a clan-league now with Jasmine!

Caledonii League Run-Down - Groups - 2000

With the world winding down, more teams from the so-called "middle of the pack" have started to emerge in the the famed Groups League to take their shot at the reigning champions.  This time around, in the upper division, The Body Snatchers and Lucky XIII traded rounds, with the former lower division winner bringing their "A" game to the first round, and the long-time upper division powerhouse taking the second match.  Strong performances from Jels and Kymara against a shorthanded Lucky XIII sealed an undefeated first round for TBS, but a full-strength Lucky XIII were not to be denied in round two.

Old Friends solidly won the lower division, with Suicidal Thinking and Mercury Falls taking second and third, respectively.

New World Features New Classes!

WH: So, we're all waiting with bated breath for more information on the new world, especially classes. Anything you'd care to share with us about what the newly introduced classes are going to be?

D: Currently, we are working on the spellcasting block of the classes: Mages Apprentice, Mage, and Seer.  All of these 3 will have the basic ability to cast ice, fire and energy based spells, with each having its own specialized role:

The Seer will be the true "Elementalist" type class that can cast more types of those spells, and will have sub-classes that pertain directly to their element of choice.

The Mage will be a reagent and book spellcaster type similar to old-school D&D gaming, with spells such as: firefly, hold trap, hold person, shocking grasp, burning hands, and vampiric touch.  The sub-classes here vary between control, support, and raw damage.

The Mages Apprentice will be free to play, but will not have access to sub-classes or any of the new Mage or Seer spells. They will be adequate for free play and are still beneficial to their groups.

WH: Last issue, you mentioned that the knife combat rogue will replace the iconic knife combat juggler build. What's the goal with separating that build out from the class? What will the juggler's new third option be?

D: The days of the traditional Juggler as an "all in one" hero are drawing to an end. With clearly defined roles within a group for the classes, the Jugglers will remain a powerful group hero as far as buffing goes. They are not having "all" of their attack skills removed, but they are being led into a definite place within the group.

The rogue will hopefully be much more of a challenge to the old juggler players, but will not be geared towards direct group play, but a "greed" type of player. Do not misunderstand though, they are still beneficial to a group in terms of attacking powerful enemies with stealth. Just don't expect any supreme group buffs from them.

We will still be able to provide a valuable third sub-class for these heroes.

WH: Is the addition of a fourth non-premium class going to affect group balance? How will non-premium groups fare in dungeons in the new world?

D: The fourth non-premium class is long overdue. It is an acolyte class that is capable of feats such as "administer healing potion" and "administer mana potion" as well as an array of healing skills and techniques. Healing has been an issue for quite a long time with the non-premium groups. Generally, it has been accepted that if you are in a full group of non premiums, you were doomed to fail certain levels and would not have access to the same type of gameplay as the premium players.
While this is true in regards to the sub-classes (in the future), the introduction of a non-premium healing class should make a visible impact on the games appeal to non-premium groups.

WH: So, lots of awesome changes in the class area alone. When can we mark our calendars for the reset?

D:  So far, we have all been a bit behind on the design team due to some real life issues and what we saw as a great opportunity to expand WoD in the new world.  Trust us, though, it will be worth the wait, and the stuff that is done so far is probably the coolest you have seen yet in WoD.

RE-RUN: The Herald Wants YOU!

Got an interesting build you'd like to share?  An idea you want to get out there?  Too much bundled up creativity and no outlet?  The Herald is looking for interviewees.  To sign up, send a message to Jasvyr and shout your glorious information to the world (figuratively...there's no yelling allowed in journalism...)!!!  Seriously, message me in game, I want to interview you (assuming you have something even REMOTELY interesting to say)!

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