Holy Paladin columnist at Blizzard Watch!

So in case you missed the news on Twitter, I'm the new Holy Paladin columnist over at Blizzard Watch! I'll be writing every other Monday, starting...today! The first column just went live today - it's about the 6.2 PTR changes (so far) for Holy Pallies.

I know a lot of people on Twitter were calling for Weak Aura or UI posts, which I'm a little nervous about...but I'm sure I'll get to those eventually! Same with the tips for RP walking fights, for taking selfies during boss encounters...

Anyway, if you've got any questions about Holy Paladins, head on over to Blizzard Watch and let me know in the comments!

Transmog Spotlight: White & Gold or Blue & Black?

guys please help me

is this transmog white and gold?

or blue and black?

me and my friends can’t agree

and we are freaking the fuck out

So I just looked at this like, it’s blue and black obviously
and all my friends were like no it’s blue and gold.

Now I’m super confused, what is eyesight?

I see it as white and gold. My friend right here sees it as blue and black.

if that’s not gold my entire life has been a lie

I am seeing Blue and Black, how are people seeing it different?

Is there some sort of mind sorcery happening here?! :o

* * * * *

Gold & White
Head: Warbringer's Crown
Shoulders: Strengthened Stockade Pauldrons
Cloak: Embersilk Cloak
Chest: Sunscale Chestguard
Shirt: White Linen Shirt
Hands: Conqueror's Gauntlets
Waist: Girdle of Uther
Legs: Wall Legplates
Feet: Spike-Soled Stompers

Blue & Black
Head: Symbolic Crown
Shoulders: Heroic Pauldrons
Cloak: Devilshark Cape
Chest: Darkrune Breastplate
Shirt: Blue Workman's Shirt
Hands: Ornate Mithril Gloves
Waist: Girdle of the Penitent
Legs: Korjan Legguards
Feet: Stonestep Boots

Plague of Undeath outbreak ravages Stormwind, blamed on Anti-Naxxers

(Screenshot source: AJAlkaline40)

A recent outbreak of the Plague of Undeath in Stormwind City has resulted in dozens of civilian deaths and the entire Trade District being placed under heavy quarantine, bringing a familiar debate to the surface once more: Should Naxxination be mandatory?

Naxxination, the Light-based magical inoculation process developed from studying toxins found in Naxxramas, effectively renders the recipient completely immune to the virulent and highly contagious plague. In the decade since the Lich King's demise, worldwide Naxxination practices have all but eradicated the dreaded "undead curse" - until last week, that is.

For the first time in years, Stormwind witnessed an outbreak of one of the most dreaded diseases in all of Azeroth's history. How did this terrible pestilence, largely thought eliminated, find a foothold in what should be one of humanity's most protected, sanctified cities?

The answer: The Anti-Naxxination movement, or Anti-Naxxers, a collection of people who consciously choose not to inoculate their children and families against the Lich King's most powerful necromantic weapon.

Anti-Naxxers place their faith in a study that surfaced a few years ago stating that Naxxination was "unhealthy, unnecessary, and unethical," and that catching and surviving "common household illnesses" such as the flu, strep throat, and the Plague of Undeath, was "simply one of life's little rites of passage."

The author of the mysterious study, along with their medical credentials, remains unknown to this day, though a footnote written on the last page states that the author "totally isn't Kel'Thuzad".

Since the study's appearance, the Church of the Holy Light has pointed out dozens of inaccuracies, fallacies, and outright, bold-faced lies within its contents. Yet despite these arguments, as well as overwhelming evidence that it tends to be a good idea to immunize your child against a literal death plague that can turn them into a ravenous flesh-eating monster, there are some out there who remain skeptical.

"I just don't buy what they're sellin' about this stuff!" said Morbil Rubella, a dwarf shaman. "I mean, we don't really know what's all in it, right? Wasn't it made with the Light? I'm a proud Wildhammer shaman, just like me father and his father before him. And I heard from a friend who heard from his sister who heard from her tailor that her boy got Naxxinated and then became a priest! I just can't take that risk for me boy!"

When asked how he planned to ensure his child would not fall victim to the disease, Rubella shrugged. "I'll continue the family tradition of what me father did for me, which is a healthy serving of tree bark with every meal. Tried and true!"

Meanwhile, others insisted there was "hard evidence" that linked Naxxinations to a variety of unpleasant afflictions. "Just look at Prince Anduin!" said Dunning, a miserable drunkard from Old Town. "He was perfectly fine, until King Varian made him get Naxxinated. And what happened to the Prince then? HE GOT CRUSHED BY A BELL!"

"If that's not a clear enough link for you, then I just don't know what to tell you," he added, before passing out in a puddle of his own filth.

"Them fancy church fellas can say whatever they like, but in the end it's freedom of choice, ain't it?" said Westfall resident Sheila Kruger. "Besides, it's magic! That stuff ain't natural! Ain't no way I'm putting that crap in my kids. They gonna grow up nice and wholesome like me, all-natural, just like the supper on our plates."

Prince Anduin Wrynn expressed concerns that the Anti-Naxxination movement was, given the recent plague outbreak and subsequent rampage of infected civilians-turned-Scourge, "a dangerous and foolish step backward in magical healing advancement."

"The magic protection is, you know, pretty indisputable."

Wrynn also firmly denounced the belief that getting Naxxinated might cause one to get crushed by a large, heavy object.

"That's the dumbest thing I've ever heard, and I hang out with a megalomaniac two-year-old black dragon," said Wrynn. "Getting Naxxinated didn't make the Divine Bell fall on me. Garrosh Hellscream did that. You can't inoculate against Garrosh Hellscream."

Unfortunately, it seems Prince Anduin and the Church of the Holy Light may be fighting a losing battle. More and more civilians are choosing to opt out of their Naxxinations every year, according to a recent study. The Anti-Naxxers are here to stay, and they don't care what anyone else thinks.

"I'm glad you stopped by and got me thinking about it," said Rubella, shoveling a spoonful of bark stew into his mouth. "I think I'll sneak into the Trade District and let Little Morbie run around and play. After all, what doesn't kill ya makes ya stronger!"

"And hey, it's my boy, my risks. If I don't want to Naxxinate my kid against the Plague of Undeath, it's my call. It's not like my choice could ever possibly hurt anyone else."

WoW Insider announces partnership with Iron Horde

Disclaimer: This is a work of fiction.

Mere hours after learning that their AOL overlords were shutting them down, community fansite WoW Insider has announced a brand new corporate partner: the Iron Horde.

"It was really a no-brainer," said Grommash Hellscream, Warchief of the Iron Horde. "The Iron Horde is all about integrity, hard work and undying loyalty, and if anyone has those qualities in spades, it's that crew."

"FEBRUARY 3. Mark your calendar," tweeted Editor-in-Chief Alex Ziebart this morning, a few hours after AOL's proclamation.

Eagle-eyed readers may have noticed that February 3rd is also the day Blackrock Foundry, the massive forge and smithy that is the center of the Iron Horde's military might, is scheduled to open its doors.

Sure enough, this was no coincidence. Moments ago, Hellscream and Ziebart held a press conference confirming the new alliance between the two powerful communities. The website will now be known as Iron Insider to reflect the new partnership, and the staff headquarters will be relocated to Gorgrond, within the fiery depths of Blackrock Foundry itself.

However, both 'Chiefs promised that the website's honest editorial coverage would not be affected, and that the community and spaces for discussion would retain the integrity and safety Insider readers have come to know and love.

"I don't really understand it," said Hellscream, shaking his head. "You've got a squad of skilled, tenacious people, the best around, and even when things looked grim, they continued to churn out top-notch, unfaltering work. And they have a dedicated, huge group of followers that love them. You're sitting on an untapped True Iron mine! And you're just going to toss it away? It just doesn't make any sense, but I suppose their stupid, bizarre decision is our gain."

Asked about the moral implications of aligning with the Iron Horde, Ziebart nodded, as if expecting the question. "As Editor-in-Chief, it's my job to ensure that my team not be forced to work with cruel, evil tyrants who don't care about the rest of the world, who savagely turn on their own loyal members, and who only care about their own personal gain and profit. And that's why we're no longer with AOL."

"We've got some big editorial plans in the works," said Hellscream, grinning. "The first thing we're going to do is get Matthew Rossi down in the Pit to start training the new grunts. Have you read that guy's stuff? Dude really knows how to be a warrior."

When asked if this indicated that the much-beloved Class Columns could possibly be returning, Hellscream nodded emphatically. "Ner'zhul's jewels, yes! Some of our soldiers have absolutely no idea what they're doing, so we could really use some experts to help them out. I mean, just the other day I heard that one of our scouts carries around thirteen axes. Thirteen! How many axes does one orc really need?"

The two 'Chiefs concluded the press conference with the confirmation that longtime Insider features would continue unabated, with only minor modifications. Some of the features mentioned included WRUP (What Are You Pillaging), Around Draenor, Know Your Gore, and Sunday Funnies.

"You will never again be slaves to AOL!" shouted Hellscream and Ziebart together, raising axe and pen skyward, to deafening cheers from the assembled crowd.

(Thanks for all the great work, coverage, community exposure,
and memories over the years, WoW Insider. You will be sorely missed!)

Transmog Spotlight: Thranduilor (aka LEE PACE)

Thranduil from the recent Hobbit movies is an utterly perfect character to emulate for a Fabulor transmog. Haughty, arrogant, confident...and above all else, an overwhelming sense of superiority. Does a more appropriate character inspiration for Fabmog even exist? I think not.

Something funny about this transmog - even though it's absolutely based off Thranduil, I actually didn't try to match either of his two iconic movie outfits (his shimmering metallic robes and his gleaming silvery battle plate). Instead, I tried to capture his personality. Ornate, elegant white steel with soft, regal gold highlights. Streamlined, nothing too bulky. Sleek and round lines - no spikes or skulls here!

I DID try to capture some of the feel from his battle armor, though, which is why Fabulor's shoulders, chestpiece and legs all have the same style of overlapping metal plates that Thranduil wears when he's going into battle.

Thranduil doesn't use a shield, but Fabulor does, so an appropriately decorative, shiny selection was required. As for his weapon, you may be surprised I went with such a simple model, but after careful consideration I decided that the blade's gentle curve and lack of a handguard were the most important features to emphasize.

Head: Rhinestone Sunglasses (Blingtron 4000 or Auction House)
Shoulders: Justicar Pauldrons (Gruul's Lair)
Cloak: Icy Cloak (Tailoring)
Chest: Chestplate of Arcane Volatility (Twin Ogrons, Normal difficulty)
Tabard: Golden Lotus Tabard (Exalted with Golden Lotus)
Hands: Gauntlets of the Heavy Hand (The Butcher, Normal difficulty)
Waist: Sunsoul Girdle (Salvage Yard)
Legs: Ravenskar Legplates (BoE)
Feet: Mosscrusher Sabatons (Brackenspore, Normal difficulty)

Weapon: Viking Sword (BoE)
Shield: Protective Barricade of the Light (Vendor)

Finally, why the Rhinestone Sunglasses? Well, the movie fans have really latched onto Thranduil, and there is COUNTLESS fanart and cosplay of Thranduil sporting pink shutter shades and being called "Party King Thranduil". And honestly, this is way too funny not to run with.

Now yes, TECHNICALLY you can't actually transmog into the Sunglasses. Which is a shame! But that's okay. I just wear them whenever I can, including during ready checks, so my entire raid team gets to see Party King Fabulor.

I've only accidentally done a fight while wearing them once (so far). But hey. That's the price of looking good.