Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Wherein I digress: Tamra Stormpike

Sometimes when I'm trying to come up with a theme for a post about a rarespawn I get distracted. Really, really distracted. Most often this happens with the rarespawns that just don't have anything very original about them. There are a lot of these, mostly in the old world of the classic game. Therefore, this entry will digress quite a bit from the poor rarespawn at hand.

Today's rarespawn is Tamra Stormpike.

Who? Where? What? Why?

Tamra Stormpike is a rare elite mob dwarf found inside Dun Garok in the Hillsbrad Foothills, in Eastern Kingdoms.

I have found Tamra in two different locations in this dwarven fortress. He may spawn in even more spots, but these are the ones I have seen. First, he can by the stairs on the second level inside the keep. This is where I've found him most of the times I have visited the area. Secondly, he can spawn standing right in front of the keep, on the causeway leading up to the entrance.

Tamra Stormpike, like the rest of the dwarves of Dun Garok, is friendly to Alliance players and hostile to Horde players. Since a few horde quests lead here, it is safe to say that when he spawns at the keep entrance he cannot be expected to survive for long. Being hostile to only one faction isn't an entirely uncommon occurence among classic WoW rarespawns. There also seems to be a few more rarespawn affiliated with the Alliance than the Horde, make of that what you will.

Tamra looks exactly like the other dwarves in the keep, but as an elite has quite a bit more health and hits harder. He has no special abilities or drops. However, his surname indicates that he's part of the influential Stormpike Clan who are based in the nearby Alterac Mountains (the Stormpike conflict with the orcs of the Frostwolf Clan is the basis of the Battleground Alterac Valley). Tamra is most likely a lesser member of the clan, watching over his clan's interests in Hillsbrad.


Now, normally there wouldn't be a lot more for me to say about this rarespawn, but when researching for this post I found something quite amusing, which led me off on a tangent. You see, the rest of this post is devoted to my love and hate relationship with the World of Warcraft publication "World of Warcraft Bestiary", published by Bradygames in 2008.

Now for those who don't know, Bradygames are an american publishing house who have made a name for themselves publishing strategy games for various computer and video games. With the release of World of Warcraft, Bradygames began publishing a series of official strategy guides and support books for the game, each of varying accuracy and usefulness. However, the Bestiary is a quite different matter. According to the book itself, it is dedicated to bringing us "Statistical information on the denizens of the World of Warcraft Universe-including HPS, Armor, Damage, Resistances, and Abilities". This could be semi-useful for some situations, even if it isn't something I'd make into a separate book.

Unfortunately, the Bestiary manages to squander even this meagre usefulness with a few quite baffling design decisions.

The biggest weakness of this publication is the fact that it presents the NPC's in alphabetical order with no information on where each NPC can be found. You can look up a mob if you've seen it in an area, but you can't check for what mobs occur in a zone.

This in itself makes the book almost useless.

Secondly, the information presented is in itself shoddy. It does not list creature types for the mobs, does not offer complete stats for the mobs (with a few exceptions boss mobs don't have statistics for their heroic version) and some abilities are just described as a single word.

To further add to the problems with this book, the entries themselves have problems. The selection of creatures seems to be focused on monsters you can be expected to fight, and excludes almost all city mobs and pvp-related NPC's, so you can't find Jaina Proudmoore's abilities in here. Secondly, some mobs are simply missing, against all common sense. Azuregos, the classic outdoor raidboss is just not there, nor are a few other mobs I noticed. In comparison, the book lists some creatures which either have never existed in a live version of World of Warcraft, or been taken out years before the book was completed.

Finally, and the reason I went off on this rant in the first place, some NPC's have the wrong portrait. Maybe you can guess where this is going.

This is Tamra Stormpike.

This is what the World of Warcraft Bestiary claims Tamra Stormpike looks like:

Now, there are some posts claiming that Tamra can spawn as a male or a female dwarf, but I have seen him many times now and only ever seen him as a male dwarf. The image they chose for the Bestiary is actually Haelga Slatefist, the Alterac Valley battlemaster in Shattrah City, kind of an odd mistake to make.

Again, sorry for this departure from the topic at hand, but when I in the future speak of information from the Bestiary, you will now know what to expect. While I do find the extremely obscure information contained in some parts of it (It's the only place I managed to find out the abilities of Overseer Tidewrath, for example. But I may go into this another time), it is still a very badly constructed book of extremely little use to a WoW player. Let this be a lesson if you ever considering writing a strategy guide or similar.

We'll be back to the normal format next entry.

Until next time!

1 comment:

Skulda said...

GET OUT OF MY KEEP, STORMPIKE FILTH!! And you have a girly name too!!