Tuesday, March 29, 2016

A Night Out on the Town: Marleybone's Real History

Marleybone is a unique world. It was a traumatic world if you fell victim to battles you didn't mean to fight. Big Ben felt like forever. But I think we all secretly enjoyed Marleybone for the scenery: It was refreshing. It was nice to see something modern. The clothing was fancy enough to be stitched even today. There's more to Marleybone's real life history than meets the eye!

Wolfminster Abbey

London in the Time of the Late Victorian Era
London, in the time of the late Victorian Era, was divided by the rich and the poor. Slums were overly crowded and crawling with diseases. The wealthy had little idea of the state of the poor. The use of coal burning stoves clogged the air. Street Gangs cast a looming shadow, striking fear into the hearts of many.  Police Officers were known as "Bobbies."

Food for Thought:
The name Marleybone is clearly derived from Marylebone, an inner-city area in London, England. This simple fact points us in the right direction. 

Locations, Locations
  • Kensington, Chelsea, and Hyde Park are all real places in London. They all happen to be near each other, just like how they are located near each other at Digmoore Station.
  • Located not to far from Hyde Park is Buckingham Palace. Barkingham Palace is near Digmoore Station and Hyde Park. 
  • Scotland Yard, which is police headquarters in-game, is also the name of the Metropolitan Police Service headquarters. The real Scotland Yard is located near Westminster Abbey. 
  • Wolfminster Abbey could be derived from Westminster Abbey. Wolfminster Abbey is located near the in-game Scotland Yard.
  • Newgate Prison is real. The in-game version is aligned with the real version. The real prison was located in London.
  • The Royal Museum is loosely based off of The British Museum. Both display artifacts of the same culture: Ancient Egypt (Krokotopia.)
  • Halley's Observatory maybe referencing Edmund Halley, the English astronomer who calculated the times when Halley's Comet appears.

Marleybone is indeed London, England.

More Real Life Connections
One of the easiest evidence to recognize is Sherlock Bones and his fearless assistant Watson.  
  • The stories of Sherlock Holmes were written in Victorian-Era England by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
  • Something even less obvious is our sinister villain Meowiarty. Meowiarty happens to be the adaptation of the criminal mastermind Professor Moriarty in the Sherlock Holmes series. 
  • 221B Barker St. is a direct adaptation of 221B Baker St, which is the address of Sherlock Holmes.

Katzenstein is clearly based off Frakenstein by English Author Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley in 1818. Both are crazy scientists. 

Something less obvious is the plot of the Four Dungeons series instance of Barkingham Palace. Some of the characters and part of the plot follows closely with a well-known story. That story is The Strange Case of Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson.

Interestingly, the name of the State Wing quest is"A Strange Case," referencing the title of the story. Margherita Vizzini even calls Dr, Jackall "two-faced," further prooving the inspiration of the plot. At the end of the Rooftop dungeon, Dr. Jackall mentions a duality of self, unbound by rules and conscience. He even talks about research and alchemy. 

In the Wizard101 version, Dr. Jackall is trying to permanently become his evil alternate, Mister Hound. At the end of the instance, Dr. Jackall realizes what he did and asks us to leave him to his doom. In the real story, Dr. Jeckyll tries to prevent himself from becoming his evil alternate Mr. Hyde. In the end, his evil form completely takes over. Both end the same way.
  • Dr. Jackall = Dr. Jeckyll/Mr. Hyde -- Two-Faced/Double Personality
  • Enfield Trickster = Richard Enfield
  • Lanyon Scratcher = Dr. Hastie Lanyon
  • Mister Poole = Mr. Poole
  • Mister Utterson = Gabriel John Utterson
Even though this is obvious, this needs to be included. Marleybone has a queen, which is a monarch. England was also a monarchy. The queen of Marleybone resides in Barkingham Palace, just like the queen of England resides in Buckingham Palace.

As mentioned earlier, street gangs were very much a part of everyday life. So much so that people were fearful of their lives, This is why there are so many street gangs in Marleybone, such as the O'Leary and the McTavish. Generally speaking, Dogs, Cats, and Rats are also gangs. The Marleybone gangs fight, rob, and cause trouble wherever they go. The London gangs did that and far worse. 

The rise of the use of coal plagued London with horribly dangerous air. Often, the smoke from the burning coal would mix with fog, creating the toxic "smog." The smog was so thick that it was near impossible to see things. Many respiratory diseases where contracted because of it. This is why there are so many references to smog, (i.e. Smogger) coal, (i.e. Stoker) and industry. (i.e. The Ironworks) Also, to clean the soot-covered chimneys, chimney sweeps would travel rooftop to rooftop to do their jobs. This is why we see Chimney Sweep mobs AND that most or Marleybone takes place on the roofs of the city.

Closing Time
As the pubs in Marleybone begin to close for the night, I hope you've enjoyed learning a little bit about this elegant city and London. We can firmly conclude that Marleybone is London and heavily based on England.

What other connections can you make?


Sources

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Official Nordic Champion Accounts

Since I am growing, I want to take the time to list out all of my accounts from around the web. Anything else not listed that is claiming to be me IS NOT me. If you are ever unsure of an account being me, please contact me and I will clarify it for you.


Emails:
Primary: amaranthinefog@gmail.com (if you have a question, please use the email below)
Secondary: nordicchampion1@gmail.com (Contact Form & Contests only)

Google+
Nordic Champion Blog
Community: Nordic Champion Blog

Twitter:
Cheyenne Caster: @NordicChampion1
Blog Twitter: @Nordic_Champion

Instagram:
@nordicchampion

Facebook: 
Cheyenne Caster
Nordic Champion Blog

Tumblr
cheyennecaster101

Disqus
Nordic Champion

RealWorld Cursor Design
giovanna

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Gear Vault Crafting Guide

The Gear Vault is easily one of the best parts of the update. Holding 100 items, this gem can be placed both inside and outside your house... but you can only have 2. One inside, the other outside. You can easily move things from the vault to your bank. The Gear Vault is No Trade, No Auction, and Crowns Only. If you don't want to craft, simply buy it from the Crowns Shop for 1995 crowns.


You can buy the recipe from Toshio in Moo Shu for 15000 Gold.

Cool Down Timer: 18:20:00
Crafting Station: Housing


  • 1 Reinforced Crate
    • Bought from: Aubert Quickhammer, Furniture Shop, Shopping District, Wizard City
  • 30 Stone Blocks
    • Bought from: Bazaar
    • Found: Mainly in Krokotopia
  • 20 Sandstone
    • Bought from: Bazaar
    • Found: Krokotopia, Dragonspyre, and Celestia
  • 10 Mist Wood
    • Bought from:Bazaar
    • Found: Wizard City
  • 25 Flawless Sapphire
    • Bought from: Archytas, Celestia Basecamp, Celestia
  • 25 Reshuffle Treasure Cards
    • Bought from: Harold Argleston, Library, Wizard City; Bazaar
  • 10 Fairy Treasure Cards
    • Bought from: Harold Argleston, Library, Wizard City; Bazaar

Friday, March 18, 2016

Spring 2016 Test Realm

Spring is here in the Spiral, bringing much more than flowers! The Test Realm is open (not at this precise moment, though.) This small, yet amazing update adds more quality to the game. Remember, you must have a membership or have made a purchase of $6 or more to have access to the Test Realm. Read on to learn more about what's new in the Test Realm, it's schedule, and new data.

Daily Assignments

If you play Wizard101 on a daily basis, you can now earn great rewards. Just visit Aegon Statz in Ravenwood to get a certain task. When you complete the task, simply turn it in to earn your reward. If you're unable to complete the task, you can pick up where you left off. Every day you complete the task, you earn a better reward tier. Eventually, after day 15, you will return down to day 1 rewards.

The Daily Assignment Rewards Screen

Skeleton Key Bosses

As revealed by KingsIsle and Fansites alike, the 3 hinted creatures are indeed Skeleton Key Bosses. You can read my post here.
  • Ra: Rank 4 Boss, Located in the Krokotopian Library, use a Wooden Skeleton Key
  • Ixcax Cursed Wing: Rank 13 Boss, Located in the Black Sun Pyramid, Azteca,  use a Stone Skeleton Key
  • Omen Stribog: Rank 17 Boss, Located in the River of Frozen Tears, Polaris, use a Gold Skeleton Key
Spells

Life wizards, rejoice! Now there is a Level 84 Star School Aura that boosts your damage! Make sure you completed the Level 84 quest to unlock the trainer. The Star School trainer is located in Azteca.


Wizards Level 100 and up now have access to train some higher rank off-school spells from the Arcanum Scholars. 
  • Zander: Nature's Wrath, Forest Lord
  • Baba Yaga: Orthrus
  • Qismah Shasa: Death Trap, Skeletal Dragon
  • Jaki Whisperwind: Power Nova
  • Tarrak Hadfield: Ice Trap, Frost Giant
  • Ignus Ferric: Fire Dragon
  • Ione Virga: Triton, Storm Lord
Fishing in Zafaria

Fish have entered Baobab! You can now fish all over Zafaria, and work towards your Prodigious Level 20 fishing badge. There are brand new fish species protected by the pesky Sentinels. The Zafarian chests are known to drop excellent items, such as never before seen wands and promotional wands.

Gear Vault

Much like the Seed Vault, the gear vault is like a second bank. You can fit 100 items! That's more than a Free-to-Play member's backpack space. Easily the most innovative part of the update, the gear vault is both available in the Crown Shop AND as recipe from Toshio in Moo Shu. 

You can put hats, robes, boots, wands, athames, rings, and amulets in the bank. You may only place two vaults in a house, one inside and the other outside. 

Crafting

When the Test Realm goes live, every time you complete a crafting quest, you will receive an additional crafting slot. This will not happen until test goes live. Recipes that are involved in crafting quests have had the cool down timer reduced to 20 minutes. 

Test Realm Schedule

Please note that it the schedule is subject to change.

ON
Thursday Morning, March 17th
OFF
Friday Afternoon, March 18th
ON
Monday Morning, March 21st
OFF
Thursday Afternoon, March 24th
ON
Monday Morning, March 28th
OFF
Friday Afternoon, April 1st



Miscellaneous Twitter Data

This is data collected from Twitter. Each was reported with accompanying proof. I will update this regularly.

  • Zafarian chests are dropping:
    • New wands that look amazing!
    • Promotional Wands (reportedly caught in Elephant Graveyard)
    • Spider furniture (Incredibly Rare!)
    • KIFreeGames/FreeKI Games Furniture Items
  • Omen Stribog dropped Wings Mount?

What do you think about this Test Realm?

Saturday, March 12, 2016

New Road Warrior's Hoard Pack


Wizard101 just won't stop with the new content! First Polaris, then the Witch's Hoard Pack, and now a new pack! This truly unique and interesting pack comes packed with some amazing first-of-its-kind items. 
  • Road Warrior's Chopper Mount (+50% Speed Boost making it the FASTEST mount available)
  • Road Hog Pet
  • Road Warrior's Biker Gear
  • Legend Skull Weapon
  • Khyrsalis & Azteca Housing Guests
  • Numerous Furniture
  • More!
Where the Witch's Hoard Pack lacked, this pack exceeds! The stats on the gear are fairly good and are clearly geared towards a specific school. The wand even has a JEWEL SLOT. The pack includes treasure card minions that are No PvP. It also includes some good jewels worth checking out.

The furniture in this pack seems to have a few things from a few different worlds. The worlds of focus appear to be Khyrsalis, Azteca, Avalon, Marleybone, and Grizzleheim. The furniture includes "House Guests." which are moving NPC-like items, just like in the Witch's Hoard Pack.

I just about died when I saw that you could get these classic Grizzleheim shields: Austrilund Shield, Hrundle Fjord Shield, and Northguard Shield.

Most of the furniture is auctionable.

Overall, this pack is pretty cool! It seems to offer something for everyone. In my sole opinion, the design seems to move away from wizardry. It is, however, a good-looking pack. Good luck on drops!

Check out this amazing guide from Stars of the Spiral here.

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Three New Teasers

Within the first week of March, Wizard101 released three new teasers! Some were exclusively sent to fansites, others were posted directly to the public. As soon as they were released, wizards instantly began theorizing. But at this point, everyone  has come to a general consensus that each is a Skeleton Key Boss.

A Mysterious Omen


This first teaser was revealed in the March Newsletter. It appears to be in Polaris. Accompanying the boss is three Shadow Minions. Most wizards agree that this boss is meant for Prodigious, Exalted, and possibly Promethean wizards. It is very possible that this boss will drop (a) new spell(s), whether it be trained, treasure car, jewel, or item card.

Ra and Krokopatra


This second teaser was sent  to official fansites, Ra, Krokopatra, and two Krokotopians will be joining this battle. Apparently Krokopatra is related to Malistaire because they never seem to die. They thing I don't understand is why we fight Ra. According ti Alhazred, he was once a great "flesh" wizard, known as the "Balancer." His studies turned him to a magical being of pure magic and light. So if wizards are summoning him to deal justice to enemies, why is he (in theory) corrupt or now evil? 

This battle may be aimed at lower level wizards. He could also drop a new spell, probably being a Balance spell. 

Aztecosaurs in the Black Sun Pyramid 

Credit to Frostcaller for the image (couldn't paste in the Vine) 
The third and final teaser was posted publicly. An Aztecosaur has taken up residence in the Black Sun Pyramid in Azteca. This is probably an upper level boss, which means that mid-level wizards may not be getting anything new soon. Because this boss is in a known location, it confirms that it and the others are a Skeleton Key Bosses. This boss could also drop some new spells. But I think the real question is: Aren't they supposed to be dead?


So if these are Skeleton Key Bosses, I think I know which type of key each is.

Wooden Skeleton Key: Ra & Krokopatra
Stone Skeleton Key: Aztecosaurs in the Black Sun Pyramid
Gold Skeleton Key: A Mysterious Omen

Looking for a Skeleton Key? Check out Swordroll's Wizard101 Skeleton Keys Guide for all your Skeleton Key needs. Find out where keys are dropped, how to use them, and where to use them! Plus learn tips, tricks, and other helpful information. Whether you are stocking up for these possible bosses or for a known one, Swordroll's guide has it all!

Do you think these bosses are Skeleton Key bosses? What do you think will be dropped?