wow build 15961 has DK changes. Yay!

Well the Beta build 15961 has DK changes coming to a server near us all very soon; well a change. Yippee. Cough. Now this is not assured, so perhaps this is the beginning of something beautiful. Oh hell, I’ll just cut to the chase, here is the change which will benefit so many Death Knights:

Now I think they’re just screwing with me. Continue reading

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Interesting security alert for Blizzard

Logo of Blizzard Entertainment

Not the first, and not the last account security alert for a game company came yesterday from Blizzard. In short – their systems were significantly compromised sometime around Aug 4 2012, and while no credit card information, billing addresses, or real names were exposed, the basic message is that everyone needs to change their passwords and account information. Details here.

Honestly I think that this is a mess, and a mess that demonstrates a few points worth noting for organisations which have either a vocal population or sensitive information (yes, everyone):

  • Anyone is vulnerable to a hack, even the monolithic software devs. Consider that the larger the company, the larger the revenue, and the larger the honeypot of information is that could be obtained. That makes Blizzard an exceedingly juicy target.
  • Good tools and development principals can assist in protecting customers. The authenticator makes a big difference. The password storage mechanism inside the system/DB makes a huge difference.
  • Telling customers the open truth will garner the best reaction. Following up with extra news and responses to questions will save the share price.
  • Telling customers quickly is critical. If a customer finds out late then the vendor is on the hook for every poor experience in the customers mind from that point forward, however illogical they are.
  • Always provide a plan of what to do next, and what is happening next.

It is not that companies need good security (they do), but they also need excellent protocols for security events. A gaff in dealing with a breach in security will hurt a long after the actual systems are restored. The public has a long memory.

This means that while trying to patch the issue Blizzard are also considering the PR damage control. It appears from my first review that Blizzard took the honest path – they spoke clearly about what happened. I think I read elsewhere that they also have involved external consultants to help. Even bloody better. Nothing makes a systems or a dev person stand up like having another techie review how you do things. In spite of the hack, its good to see.

So go update your passwords, I’m not sharing a “password reset” link as I distrust any links like this that I don’t type out myself. Continue reading

Pandaren with Orb of Deception?

Aside

What does a panda turn into when it uses an Orb of Deception? It’s not known, but it is a great question which already had a few posts in place (the orbs change your race into a member of the opposite faction, essentially making you appear as an enemy).

So far I’ve suggestions for gender change, murlocks, sagaeras, fur colour twists, no change at all, and even server crashes. My suggestion is to re-do the assignment of what race switches to what, so that every orb user now gets a different switch. I’d really like it to be a new race switch each time, but would think that a switch in this expac is not the end of the world.

If anyone whines, then they should be asked how reliable an Orb of Deception should really be. Turns out its a shamefully unoriginal thought too. Blarg.