Tuesday, January 29, 2013

World of Warcraft Newbie Guide 19: Glyphs - Yet Another Way To Gain Or Modify Abilities

Before talents got reworked to their current state, there was a talent tree with numerous effects that modified existing abilities and special learned abilities that a player could choose from. While this has been cut down significantly to the current implementation where a player can choose up to six passive or active abilities and additional abilities are learned through leveling based on your specialization choice, players also have an additional option implemented a couple expansions ago. This implementation is known as a glyph, which, after many changes, can grant new abilities or modify existing ones, usually with some benefit at a cost.

Acquiring Glyphs

Glyphs are an item crafted by characters with the Inscription profession. Each is specific in what sort of effect it has and can only be used by a certain class. When you use a glyph, you permanently learn it and do not have to purchase another glyph of that specific name for the character.

Glyphs tend to be very expensive because they are permanently learned despite the fact that the materials are quite common. It may be difficult to buy glyphs off the Auction House or through other methods of trade when starting off because of this. Therefore, when starting out, I recommend giving at least one of your characters (it does not, and probably should not, be your first character) Herbalism (to gather materials for Inscription) and Inscription, as a single scribe can make glyphs for anyone.

Using Glyphs (The Glyph Window)

Once you've learned a glyph, you have to make it your active glyph by going into the glyph window. To do this, press N to open up your Talents and Specializations. At level 25 you will be able to see another tab to access glyphs (this is also the minimum level to learn glyphs). In this tab you will see something like this:
This window displays your glyph slots, which are shown to the left, and all the glyphs your class can learn on the right, with glyphs you have yet to learn greyed out.

For glyph slots, you can have up to three major and minor glyphs active at once. You may notice that at level 25, you only have one major and one minor glyph slot open (larger circles indicate major glyphs and smaller circles indicate minor glyphs). As you can see from the window above, two more sets of glyphs will unlock, one at level 50 and one at level 75.

Now for the most important part of this feature: activating and deactivating glyphs. To activate a glyph, click on a glyph you have learned that isn't already active that you want to use and click an available glyph slot to set it as the active glyph. You can deactivate glyphs by either shift-right clicking an active glyph or attempting to overwrite an active glyph with another glyph. Like with unlearning talents, you need the appropriate materials.

That's all you really need to know about glyphs. Go try them out when you get your hands on some - there's generally no "wrong" glyph to use.

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