Worlds of Warcraft
World of Warcraft (commonly abbreviated as WoW) is a race/class-based massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) developed by Blizzard Entertainment. It is the 4th game in the Warcraft series, excluding expansion packs and the cancelled Warcraft Adventures: Lord of the Clans. more...
The Warcraft games are set in the eponymous Warcraft Universe, a fantasy setting introduced by Warcraft: Orcs & Humans in 1994. World of Warcraft is set four years after the events at the conclusion of Blizzard's previous release, Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne. As of November 2005, World of Warcraft is one of the most popular MMORPGs in the world, with more than 4.5 million active subscriptions.
Characters in the World of Warcraft are tied to specific user accounts. Users can choose from a variety of races and classes. Players can create nine characters per server with a total limit of 50 characters on all realms per account.
Races and classes
Players create characters which serve as their avatar in the online world of Azeroth. When creating a character in World of Warcraft, the player can choose from eight different races and nine different character classes. The races are split into two equally sized factions, the Alliance and the Horde:
- The Alliance currently consists of Humans, Night Elves, Dwarves and Gnomes. An unknown race will be added in the upcoming Burning Crusade expansion.
- The Horde currently consists of Orcs, Tauren, Undead (a.k.a. Forsaken) and Trolls. Blood Elves will be added in the upcoming Burning Crusade expansion.
- Additionally, there are many NPC races such as Goblins, Ogres, High Elves and Murlocs.
- See also: Races in the Warcraft universe.
The nine available classes are Druid, Hunter, Mage, Paladin, Priest, Rogue, Shaman, Warlock and Warrior. Two of the classes are faction-specific: Paladins for the Alliance, and Shamans for the Horde. Classes are also limited by race. There are 20 possible combinations of race and class for each faction, for a total of 40 combinations across both factions.
In addition to the character classes, a player may choose two primary professions and as many secondary professions as they wish. The professions consist of two types: gathering and item creation/service. Many players choose to pair two related professions, thus allowing the character to gather the required materials for the crafting skill. The most commonly paired skills are as follows: Mining and Blacksmithing or engineering, Skinning and Leatherworking, Herbalism and Alchemy, and to a lesser extent, tailoring and enchanting. Some players choose to select only "gathering" professions, opting to simply supply resources to players with item creation skills. This type of player will typically offer gathered items for sale on the game's auction houses. In the upcoming expansion there will be two new professions, jewelcrafting and another profession to be named later.
Attributes are referred to as "stats" within the game.
Strength (STR), Intellect (INT), Spirit (SPI), Agility (AGIL/AGI) and Stamina (STA/STAM) are the attributes of World of Warcraft. These attributes hold a key role in determining a character's health (hit points), mana (mana is what is used up by casting spells) attack power (each point of attack power increases a character's damage per second by 1/14), armor (reduces the amount of damage you take), dodge, and critical strike chances (a default of double damage with ranged and melee weapons) health regeneration, mana regeneration, and critical strike chance with spells (a default of one and a half damage with spells). For each class, different attributes are more important. Classes that rely on melee combat, strength is more important than spirit and benefit more from an increase in that particular area.
Agility increases armor by 2 points, and ranged attack power by 2 points for each level of agility a character has. Druids, Hunters and Rogues also gain 1 point of melee attack power per point of Agility. Agility is also linked to a character's chance to dodge and critical strike with a weapon (although the degree of effect varies for each class). Hunters and Rogues generally need as much agility as possible from gear (in game equipment).
The amount of the increase is dependant on both class and level. For most level 60 character classes, approximately 20 points of AGI will increase your critical hit chance by approximately 1%. As with all attributes, some classes benefit differently from high attribute statistics. Rogues require 29 AGI for an additional 1% critical hit chance, and Hunters require 53 AGI for an additional 1% critical hit chance, but both of these classes also gain attack power from agility and the items available to them typically have much higher amounts of AGI.
Every 1 point of strength increases attack power by 2 points for most classes and is linked to the amount of damage prevented when blocking with a shield. This attribute is generally important for all melee classes (Warriors, Shamans, and Paladins,) although Rogues, Feral Druids and Hunters also benefit from strength. Rogues and Hunters gain 1 attack power for every Strength point they get.
Intellect increases the maximum amount of mana a character can attain by 15 points per level. It is also linked to the chance to critical strike with spells (roughly 60 points of intellect equals a 1% chance to critical strike with spells). This attribute is very important for casting classes (Mages, Warlocks, Priests, Druids, Shamans), and is also used by Paladins and Hunters, although it is not of the highest priority. Intellect is also used to determine the rate at which weapon skill increases.
Stamina increases the amount of hit points a character has by 10 per point of stamina. Stamina is important for all classes but especially important for Warriors, Warlocks, Shamans, and Paladins.
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