World of Warcraft Shot of the Week: Molten Core (Ragnaros’ Lair)

This week I chose to focus on what was the very first raid dungeon in World of Warcraft, other than Onyxia’s Lair. Being a Vanilla veteran myself, I have fond memories of running this dungeon when I reached level 60 way back in 2005. Recently the Molten Core experience was reopened for players at level 100, to celebrate the tenth anniversary of World of Warcraft. It was a very different experience, I had several good laughs watching the players of today trying to figure the place out.

The Molten Core lies at the very bottom of Blackrock Depths. It is the heart of Blackrock Mountain and the exact spot where, long ago in a desperate bid to turn the tide of the dwarven civil war, Emperor Thaurissan summoned the elemental Firelord, Ragnaros, into the world. Though the firelord is incapable of straying far from the blazing Core, it is believed that his elemental minions command the Dark Iron dwarves, who are in the midst of creating armies out of living stone. The burning lake where Ragnaros lies sleeping acts as a rift connecting to the plane of fire, allowing the malicious elementals to pass through. Chief among Ragnaros’ agents is Majordomo Executus – for this cunning elemental is the only one capable of calling the Firelord from his slumber.

The Molten Core consists of rock and lava, with the lava forming rivers, small lakes and “lavafalls”. Other features are small volcano-like smoke vents, molten cracks in the walls and roof, occasional dark iron deposits, and the runes of warding. Most locations do not have specific names, causing the majority of the Molten Core to be called simply “The Molten Core”.

You can download or view this week’s shot here!


Vivace – My official music blog

I wanted to take a moment to promote another blog that I maintain. This one is called Vivace and is the official blog for my music compositions. While I do post music I have written to this blog, I don’t post news and updates on things I am working on. So if you’re interested, I invite you to follow Vivace too!

I have something big in the works for February!

World of Warcraft Shot of the Week: Icecrown Citadel

Icecrown Citadel is the greatest fortress of the Scourge and the last bastion of the dreaded Lich King. Located in the frozen wastes of Icecrown on the continent of Northrend, the Citadel is built around the Frozen Throne that once held the spirit of Ner’zhul until he joined with Arthas Menethil to become the new Lich King. Constructed from saronite, the Citadel is inhabited by some of the strongest and vilest of the Lich King’s minions – a great army of the living dead standing between their dark master and those who seek to destroy him.

The name of Icecrown became infamous when Kil’jaeden hurled the Lich King back into the mortal world. Ner’zhul’s prison slammed into the glacier. Here the Lich King remained until Arthas Menethil freed him and the two merged in Arthas’ body. The merging created such a large explosion that a large portion of the glacier was blown away. It left a gigantic spire of ice: the Frozen Throne, upon which sits the Lich King, ruler of the Scourge.

You can download and/or view this week’s shot in all its high resolution glory here!

A word about under-inflated footballs

First thing I am going to say is, the Patriots did NOT cheat. I am so sick and tired of people jumping the gun and assuming it was the Patriot’s fault for playing with under-inflated footballs. Allow me to explain, based on the NFL’s own rules:

As is stated in the NFL rulebook, each team makes a dozen footballs available for testing by the head of the officiating crew (the referee) two hours and 15 minutes prior to kickoff. In addition, the home team provides an additional dozen footballs (the visiting team can bring 12 backup balls as well, but only for games in indoor stadiums). For kicking plays, eight new footballs, (and I’m quoting here) “sealed in a special box and shipped by the manufacturer to the Referee,” are opened in the officials’ locker room two hours and 15 minutes before kickoff. These footballs are specifically marked by the ref and used as kicking balls only.

The rulebook also states that each ball be inflated between 12.5 and 13.5 pounds, and have certain shape, length, and circumference limits. The referee “shall be the sole judge as to whether all balls offered for play comply with these specifications.” Furthermore, a pump is to be supplied by the home team, and each football shall remain under the supervision of the ref until delivered to the ball attendant just before kickoff.

Again, quoting the rulebook, “In the event a home team ball does not conform to specifications, the Referee shall secure a proper ball from the visitors and, failing that, use the best available ball. Any such circumstances must be reported to the Commissioner.”

So given all that protocol, it’s difficult to imagine that the Patriots equipment staff or anyone else associated with the team was able to tamper in any way with the balls used in the AFC Championship versus the Colts. If Indy had a problem with the footballs being provided by New England, they had their own sufficient stash from which they could have drawn.

So therefore shut up about the Patriots being cheaters.

World of Warcraft Shot of the Week: Throne of the Four Winds

This week’s World of Warcraft Shot of the Week is the Throne of the Four Winds. Pinnacles suspended high above the sea off the coast of the kingdom of Uldum, and home to the Windlord Al’Akir.

When Deathwing returned, Al’Akir was once again free to walk the winds of Azeroth. He became one of the Destroyer’s staunchest and most powerful allies, and called the Conclave of the Four Winds, ancient wind elementals nearly as powerful as Al’Akir himself, to aid in the elemental invasion of his former home.

Al’Akir’s temperament was that of the sky: calm one moment, and furious the next. But some few aspects of the Windlord can be said to have been consistent. He possessed godlike power that would buffet and shake Azeroth if left unchecked – and he would not allow himself to be chained again. The Champions of Azeroth, however, ultimately defeated him.

You can view or download a full resolution version of this week’s shot here.

World of Warcraft Shot of the Week: Talador

After a short holiday break, I resume the World of Warcraft Shot of the Week series with Talador, the new zone in Warlords of Draenor.

Talador is the sanctuary of the draenei people. At its heart rests Shattrath City, the great metropolis, and the spiritual well of Auchindoun, where the souls of departed draenei reside. Bathed in a perpetual autumn hue, it’s covered with beautiful olemba forests, rivers, waterfalls and gardens.

You can view and/or download this week’s shot in full resolution here.