World of Warcraft

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World of Warcraft
World of Warcraft cover
Developers
Blizzard Entertainment
Release dates
Windows November 23, 2004
OS X November 23, 2004
Warcraft
Warcraft: Orcs & Humans 1994
Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness 1995
Warcraft II: Battle.net Edition 2000
Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos 2002
World of Warcraft 2004
Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft 2014

Key points

Mod friendly (Mods pertains to UI addons)
Very active community
One of the largest MMORPGs around
Updated frequently
Runs well on low end machines
Expansions must be bought to play in active endgame areas and activities
Game requires $15 per month subscription fee

General information

Official Blizzard community site for US
Official Blizzard community site for EU
Blizzard Watch "WoW" Category - A news site dedicated to all Blizzard Entertainment news.
Wowpedia - A huge wiki for everything World of Warcraft related. Also handles anything Warcraft universe related.
Thottbot - A old but expansive database on anything that can be found or used in-game. Same database as Wowhead currently.
Wowhead - An expansive database on anything that can be found or used in-game. Has a clean interface.
Statista - A ranking on the distribution of characters across EU and U.S. realms. Other statistics on World of Warcraft accessible.
Curse and WoWInterface are both great addon sources.

Availability[edit]

Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Official website First 20 levels are free to play. Base game purchase includes the Burning Crusade, Wrath of the Lich King, Cataclysm and Mists of Pandaria expansions.
The playable characters from all expansions are available, even if the player has not bought any expansion packs.

Downloadable content (DLC) and expansions

Name Notes
The Burning Crusade Available for free. Included with all full versions of the game.
Wrath of the Lich King Available for free. Included with all full versions of the game.
Cataclysm Available for free. Included with all full versions of the game.
Mists of Pandaria Available for free. Included with all full versions of the game.
Warlords of Draenor Can be bought from the Battle.net store.

Version differences[edit]

Starter Edition[edit]

The World of Warcraft Starter Edition is a free but limited version of World of Warcraft.

  • Characters can be created and leveled up to 20, and professions to 100.
  • Each character can earn up to 10 Gold.
  • Cannot access expansion zones or quests, join guilds, hold Pet Battles, or use the Auction House.
  • All achievements and progress carry over to the full version.

Game data[edit]

Configuration file(s) location[edit]

System Location
Windows <path-to-game>\WTF\Config.wtf
OS X <path-to-game>\WTF\Config.wtf

Save game cloud syncing[edit]

Progress and stats are saved automatically by Battle.net

Video settings[edit]

In-game general graphics settings.
In-game general graphics settings.
In-game advanced graphics settings.
In-game advanced graphics settings.
Graphics option Option WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution
Multi-monitor
Ultra-widescreen
4K Ultra HD
Field of view (FOV)
Zoom can be increased beyond the default. See Field of view (FOV).
Windowed
Borderless fullscreen windowed
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
Anti-aliasing (AA)
FXAA, CMAA, MSAA and SSAA.
Vertical sync (Vsync)
60 FPS
120+ FPS
Frame rate is capped at 200 FPS.[1]
Color blind mode
Set in Accessibility settings.[2] See Color blind mode for further options.

Field of view (FOV)[edit]

Change field of view
  • The maximum distance you can zoom out the camera can be increased using the command /console cameraDistanceMaxFactor 40.

Color blind mode[edit]

Enable color blind mode[3]
  1. Go to Menu, then Interface.
  2. Choose Help, then enable color blind mode.
  3. Set the mode with the chat command /console colorblindshader X where X is one of these numbers:
0 - Disabled (Default)
1 - Protanopia
2 - Protanomaly
3 - Deuteranopia
4 - Deuteranomaly
5 - Tritanopia
6 - Tritanomaly
7 - Achromatopsia
8 - Achromatomaly

Input settings[edit]

Audio settings[edit]

In-game audio settings.
In-game audio settings.
Audio options Native Notes
Separate volume controls
Master, sound, music, ambience, dialog.
A selected number of optional sounds can also be fully disabled
Surround sound
5.1 and 7.1[4]
Subtitles
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
EAX support
EAX 3. XP compatiblity mode is also required from Vista onwards (besides DirectSound3D restoration).[5]
64-bit build is unsupported.

Localizations

Language UI Audio CC Notes
English
French
Russian
Brazilian Portuguese
Spanish
Both Spanish and Latin American.

Network[edit]

Multiplayer types

Type Native Notes
Online play

Connection types

Ports

Protocol Port(s) and/or port range(s)
TCP (outbound) 3724, 1119, 1120, 4000, 6112, 6113, 6114, 80, 6881-6999
UDP (outbound) 3724, 1119, 1120, 4000, 6112, 6113, 6114, 80, 6881-6999
UPNP support status is unknown.

Issues fixed[edit]

Windowed mode (OS X)[edit]

OS X - Windowed mode
The window size can sometimes not be changed by dragging after entering windowed mode.
  1. Open World of Warcraft
  2. Disable all add-ons at the character screen
  3. Enter the game
  4. Enter windowed mode (command+m or command+enter)
  5. Force quit the game
  6. Relaunch it as normal

FPS performance issues (OS X)[edit]

OS X - FPS performance issues
World of Warcraft might run sluggishly on older-model Macs despite having the required specs.
  • Install a Windows partition using Boot Camp.

Sound issue (OS X)[edit]

OS X - Sound issue
If the machine overheats during gameplay, the sound can become distorted, which causes the framerate to fall dramatically.
This issue only seems to occur on older MacBooks (PowerBook series, early MacBook series).
  • Shut off the sound by going into the settings and removing Master volume.

Mature Filter Options Not Saving[edit]

Force a save to the server side
  1. Open the options menu.
  2. Change the setting (whether on or off).
  3. Use Alt+F4 to forcibly close the game.
  4. Re-open the game and the new setting should be saved properly.

Other Information[edit]

Visual enhancements[edit]

Increase graphical settings further than the sliders allow
  • /console farclip 1300
  • /console horizonfarclip 2112
  • /console groundeffectdensity 256
  • /console groundeffectdist 140
  • /console smallcull 0
  • /console skycloudlod 3
A comparison of each setting is shown in this video.

DirectX 11 Rendering[edit]

DirectX 11 can significantly boost performance in some scenarios
Enable DirectX 11[6]

Requirements:

  • A DirectX 10, 10.1, or 11-compliant graphics card
  • Windows Vista SP2 or Windows 7/8
Windows Vista without Service Pack 2 will be able to run the API, but it will only use shader model 4.0.
  1. Right-click on the shortcut you use to start WoW and select "Properties".
  2. You should see a target line in the new window that is already highlighted.
  3. Add -d3d11 to the end of the Target.

gxTextureCacheSize[edit]

gxTextureCacheSize [7]
This tweak seems to improve peformance for some. Only works when running d3d9ex.
The default value of '0' lets the game handle the cache size. ~70-75% of your VRAM tends to be the best value
  1. Ingame type /console gxTextureCacheSize <VALUE in MB>
  2. Restart the game for change to take affect.

Alternatively,

  1. Edit World of Warcraft\WTF\Config.wtf
  2. Add SET gxTextureCacheSize <VALUE in MB>

Addons[edit]

World of Warcraft's UI is developed via LUA scripting, and XML data.
AddOns are essentially mods, files to add to the installation folder that can improve interaction with the game.
AddOns are generally self-contained User Interface (UI) modification components. However, some AddOns can be dependent on other AddOns to work, and some AddOns are actually collections of other AddOns. Some are built on libraries such as Sea or Ace. There is no size restriction on AddOns; some can grow to be quite massive.

Blizzard's AddOn Policy[edit]

With the release of Patch 3.1, Blizzard Entertainment introduced a new UI AddOn development policy.[8]
According to the policy, "failure to abide by them [these rules] may result in measures up to and including taking formal legal action."[8]
AddOn Policy
  1. AddOns must be free of charge.
  2. AddOn code must be completely visible.
  3. AddOns must not negatively impact World of Warcraft realms or other players.
  4. AddOns may not include advertisements.
  5. AddOns may not solicit donations.
  6. AddOns must not contain offensive or objectionable material.
  7. AddOns must abide by World of Warcraft ToU and EULA.
  8. Blizzard Entertainment has the right to disable AddOn functionality as it sees fit.

Creating an AddOn[edit]

Creating an AddOn
  1. Create a new directory in Interface\AddOns. The name of this directory is important, as it is what other AddOns use to refer to this AddOn in dependencies. Using version numbers in this directory name is not recommended, as other AddOns may "break" when the version is changed.
  2. Create a .toc file. .toc is short for "table of contents". A functioning AddOn will need a file named <YourAddOnDirectoryName>.toc in "Interface\AddOns\YourAddOnDirectoryName\".
  3. Add the following required elements to the file: an interface keyword with a correct interface number and the name(s) of one or more files to load.
Blizzard requests that at least these five client-recognized tag lines must be included.
## Interface: <API_LatestInterface>
## Title: My Add On
## Version: 1.0.0
## Notes: A short description of my AddOn
## Author: Your name or memorable descriptor (e.g. LuckyLuke)
<API_LatestInterface> is the current interface number.
Do not have any extra spaces at the end of the line with the filename specified. The extra space is taken as part of the filename and will cause the AddOn to fail to load silently.
The .toc file is not reloaded when the UI is reloaded; if changes are made to it, the game must be closed to the desktop before those changes can take effect.
The interface number in the .toc file must match the current build or the AddOn will not be loaded/active, unless the user has explicitly told the game to load out-of-date Addons. If the .toc file declares an interface number prior to 2.0.0 (i.e. pre-The Burning Crusade), the AddOn can not be loaded, regardless of the load-out-of-date AddOns setting.
If a Bindings.xml file is included, it does not have to be included in the .toc list of files to load, as the game loads this file automatically. This file is used to set key bindings specific to the AddOn.
Please check out The TOC Format for a more detailed list of other keywords in the .toc file.

Troubleshooting an AddOn[edit]

"Interface action failed" error
As of Patch 2.3, if the message "Interface action failed because of an AddOn" appears, an AddOn interfered with the Blizzard UI in some way.
  1. Enter the following into chat: /console taintLog 1.
  2. Restart the game and try to reproduce it.
  3. If the issue is reproduced, quit the game and search through the file Logs\taint.log for the word blocked and mail the log to the author of the AddOn listed there.
  4. Turn off logging by entering the following into chat: /console taintLog 0.

System requirements[edit]

Windows
Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) Windows XP / Windows Vista with the latest service pack 7 / 8 / 10 64-bit with latest service pack
Processor (CPU) Intel Core 2 Duo E6600
AMD Phenom X3 8750
Intel Core i5 2400
AMD FX 4100
System memory (RAM) 1 GB (XP)
2 GB (Vista, 7, 8, 8.1, 10)
4 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 35 GB
Video card (GPU) Nvidia GeForce 8800 GT
ATI Radeon HD 4850
Intel HD Graphics 3000
512 MB of VRAM
Nvidia GeForce GTX 470
ATI Radeon HD 5870
1 GB of VRAM
OS X
Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 10.8.x 10.9
Processor (CPU) Intel Core 2 Duo Intel Core i5
System memory (RAM) 2 GB 4 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 35 GB
Video card (GPU) Nvidia GeForce 9600M GT
ATI Radeon HD 4850
Nvidia GeForce GT 750M
AMD Radeon HD 6750M

References

  1. http://www.wowwiki.com/CVar_maxFPS
  2. New Colorblind Support in Patch 6.1 - World of Warcraft
  3. Color Blind Mode - Battle.net Support
  4. 5.1 surround sound not working in 64-bit - World of Warcraft forums
  5. Creative EAX Help - World of Warcraft forums
  6. Reference
  7. http://www.wowwiki.com/CVar_gxTextureCacheSize
  8. 8.0 8.1 http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/1021053914