In case you haven’t heard…
The Armory is up and running on the Blizzard website. The Armory is Blizzard’s online character and guild profiler application. It’s in “beta”, but is worth checking out.
From what I’ve been reading on various blogs, the application is generally be received well. There are various comments that it’s slow, but then again it is in beta and has the curiousity factor going. Honestly, I find the entire wow site to be slow and I’m not convinced it’s due so much to site traffic as much as Blizzard’s technical platform and coding standards.
The other big issue being discussed is that of privacy. I’ve read a couple posts that people are up in arms that there is no option to turn off display of gear or talent builds. The reasoning is that a pvp player could gain an upper hand researching you ahead of an important arena competition.
Now I agree there should probably be a way to turn off display of my character. I don’t know exactly why, but that does seem fair (even though I’d bet you that if you really read the EULA it says that Blizzard owns all character data and can do with it whatever the hell they want to). But let’s get real here: are you really that conceited that you think people are out there looking up your character just to see what gear you have equipped or your talent build because that’s the only way they can get an upper hand on you? Come on. Any player at that level already understands the differences between classes and builds and could probably guess most of what you have equipped jut by how it looks. Plus, IMHO, success in this game comes not from what you wear or your talent build, but your personal skill in playing the game. Put me up against a veteran PvP player, tell me what gear he is wearing and what his talent build is, give me better equipment, and he’ll still clean my clock. Sorry if I’m offending anyone here, but folks it ain’t gear and it ain’t talent builds – it’s good ole hand eye coordination and innate talent.
/climbs off of soapbox
The Armory is pretty basic, compared to alternatives like ctprofiles and rpgoutfitter, but it does have some interesting features. However, given that rpgoutfitter requires an add-on, active participation to generate toon pictures, and doesn’t support multiple outfits, and ctprofiles still hasn’t recovered from The Burning Crusade, maybe Blizzard senses an opening that they can fill.
You can search on character names, guild names, and arena teams. You can also see arena ladder information although I haven’t played around with that any yet.
Here’s a link to the basic display using my main character Amanna. Yea, yea, I know; I need some equipment upgrades, lol. As you can see, it’s a fairly complete display with some neat features. I like the fact that it displays your current buffs on the side, but I wonder what that snapshot is based on. It shows me with Omen of Clarity and Mark of the Wild, and I always also have Thorns up to. So it would appear that all that is displayed is some sort of snapshot in time. My guess is that it’s the last time you logged on or off, or they take a snapshot every x minutes.
Also, it would appear to display just your currently equipped equipment. I have three outfits and there are no links to either view them or set them up for display. I’ll have to play around with this one. I bet if I logged in, switched to my healing outfit, then logged out, my Armory display would change to that outfit. It would be cool if Blizzard allowed us to configure different outfits ala ctprofiles. Maybe there could be a link on the main display to log in with your account credentials, and define alternate outfits based on your online inventory. Since this is a Blizzard application, they should have access to anything you have in-game.
The possibilities are endless – this could become your out-of-game, I’m-at-work-and-bored portal for checking your in-game mail, bank and inventory, auction status, etc. My guess is it will stay pretty much the way it is, but only time will tell on that one.
So, it’s in beta and it’s pretty basic, but it’s also kind of cool. Check it out.
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