Category Archives: Computer Games

Gilneas – The City That Blizzard Forgot

Back in the long long ago, the before time (ok, December 2010), Blizzard released World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, and everyone got all excited as they usually do. Then people got upset that their favourite race/class got downpowered, then they became happy that they could fly in the old lands for the first time, and that kept them busy for a while.

Alliance fanboys played rolled up Worgen characters and played their way through the new dedicated starting area.  They were amazed to see an amazing cod Victorian-Gothic land with some fantastic architecture and landscape, and of course, big fucking werewolves.

From the brooding darkness of Gilneas City, to the grandeur of Greymane Manor, the Gilneas starting zone is wonderful. It is a series of well thought out quest chains, stunning cutscenes, and… well then it ends. The character getting shuffled off to Rut’theran Village on Teldrassil, and Gilneas is never spoken of again.

Unlike the Goblin (and later Pandaren) starting areas, which are off on separate islands that can’t be returned to, Gilneas is on the Eastern Kingdoms mainland. You can go back there, but it most will have no reason to. There are no quests, no NPCs, no… anything, except a stunning and forgotten zone.

This makes is idea for roleplaying in, and, if you are in to such things, modifying to add quests and NPCs (but that is a subject for another day).

So… onward…

Get to Gilneas!

Well, to put it bluntly, one does not simply fly in to Gilneas.

Horde characters have a flightpoint at The Forsaken Front in Silverpine Forest, which is just north of the wall. (You might be lucky enough to have the Forsaken Forward Command flightpoint in Gilneas itself, but its not guaranteed).

The closest that Alliance players have to offer is Chillwind Camp in the Western Plaguelands, which is a long flight/run over/though Hillsbrad away.

Because of this faffery, if I were to be modding Cata WoW to add new content in Gilneas, I’d make it suitable for Level 60, as by that level the characters can fly in to it. Or, I’d make portals to get there. But I’m clearly not doing that as it is Against The Rules.

No matter how you get there, get there if you can.

Gilneas City

For now I’m just going to look at Gilneas City itself. The surrounding zone is the subject of another time.

So I suppose we should start with a map.


The city, as you can see, is roughly circular and split in to five areas, which I’ll look at in turn, highlighting all the usable buildings and other features of note.

Merchant Square


  • 1-10 denote open doors leading to small single room areas, large enough to hold maybe one NPC and some clutter.
  • 11 is a small graveyard.
  • 12 is the ruined market square.

If I were doing anything here, I’d put traders in the buildings and the square, and maybe a mourner at the graveyard.

Military District


  • 1  leads to a cellar full of cannons and cannonballs.
  • 2 and 3 lead to stair up and over the the roof, connecting to each other.

Greymane Court


  • 1 leads to a tunnel that exits out in the main zone.
  • 2 & 3 are entrances to a small inn like building with a bedroom upstairs.

Cathedral Quarter


This area is a bit dull. There are no buildings to enter, just two large areas full of tents with Alliance banners by them.

Light’s Dawn Cathedral


The Cathedral is just one large room. Maybe you could stage a rock festival in here, or even a wedding.

The End

So there’s your quick tour of Gilneas City. I’m sorry there are no actual screen shots, but if you want to see it go visit it yourself.





A Minor Gripe With World of Warcraft

While Blizzard’s World of Warcraft is for the most part a well thought out and utterly brilliant game, I have two minor gripes with it. Neither are really concerned with the gameplay, and neither really affect the world. They just annoy me.

So, I’ll start with the first one, as is traditional in this sort of thing…

Technology is not consistant within the world. You can handwave all you like about Gnomes and Goblins being insane and providing lasers, bombs and all that kind of stuff, but as far as I’m concern it doesn’t matter.

Let us look at what the World has to offer:

We have motorcycles:



planeAn underground mass-transit system:


rocketWe also have Airships, Submarines, Airbourne aircraft carriers, Speedboats, Tunnelling machines, Tanks, Exo-skeletons, and semi-sentient Robots.

What we dont have is trains. Yes, trains. Good, old-fashioned, steam trains.

But, you might be thinking, why should there be steam trains on Azeroth? Well, because there is a toy one you can buy in Dalaran:

toytrainAnd if there is a toy one to annoy other people with, why shouldn’t there be a real usable one? Maybe from Stormwind to Redridge?

And as for annoying people with a toy… well, this really used to upset people:

But now they just seem to join in and play:

I said two irritations didn’t I? Well the other one is this. There is an item called the Cooking School Bell, which summons your student (Nomi – no relation to the goth comic character Nemi):

cookingbellAs you will see in the following video, it isn’t a fucking bell!

Ranting over. For now

This how I start World of Warcraft

First of all I have to make sure that anything like Dropbox, Google Drive et al isn’t running, as for some reason Warcraft has a shit-fit and refuses to load if they are running.

Next, I fire up WoW Launcher and wait for five minutes.

Before clicking on “Play”, I have to make sure that Task Manager is up and running.

After that, I wait another five minutes to get through the loading screen and log in procedure.

Then I log in and wait for the character selection screen. After selecting a character and clicking “Enter World”, I wait until the progress bar hits about 7/8 then tab to Task Manager and wait until Wow.exe stops taking up 99% of resources.

Then I tab back, see a scene that my character should be in, but isn’t. I hear a “Bong!” and everything freezes.

I can’t tab back to Task Manager, or do anything else. So I but the PC into Hibernate mode.

Once everything is down, I bring the PC back up from Hibernation. Task Manager is visible, and I kill WowBrowserProxy.exe.

Seven times out of ten this results in my World of Warcraft client working fine and running really fast.

As for the remaining thirty percent of the time: the PC immediately reboots and I’m back to stage one.



First attempt at writing a World of Warcraft AddOn

I’ve finally decided to have a crack at writing an AddOn for WoW. Clearly it is going to be rubbish, and therefore neither use nor ornament, I’ve decided to do something utterly pointless, just as a test.

So, how about something that listens for the word “chicken” and performs the chicken dance in response?

First, I’ll need a name for this piece of nonesense, which shouldn’t conflict with any other AddOn. So, WABZNASM it is then!

An AddOn needs at least 2 files, the first of which is the .TOC file which defines what the AddOn is and what other files it needs.

Mine is called Wabznasm.toc, and looks like this:

## Interface: 50300
## Title: Wabznasm
## Notes: Stupid Test AddOn
## Author: Tony Blews
## Version: 1.0

The lines refer to the current interface version of WoW, the title of the AddOn, some waffle, who is responsible, and what the version is. The last line refers to the .LUA file which will contain the programming bits.

So, to the .LUA file, which is called Wabznasm.lua:

local f=CreateFrame("frame")   
f:SetScript("OnEvent", function(self,event,message,sender) 
     if message:match("chicken") then   
          print( sender .. " said Chicken!")

These files should go in the World of WarcraftInterfaceAddOnsWabznasm directory, and all should be well. And indeed, it is.