MMO-Champion - Interview with Greg Street (Ghostcrawler), Winter Veil, EU Blizzard Sale, Fan Art
Diablo 3 - Beta Patch 8 - Quest Selection Screens and Unofficial class changes

Post 4.3 Interview with Greg Street (Ghostcrawler)
Blizzard was nice enough to let us talk to Ghostcrawler about his thoughts on Patch 4.3 now that it has been released and what the future has in store. We were even able to sneak in a few Mists of Pandaria questions for you!



Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
In general, how well do you think Patch 4.3 went?
We are pretty happy with it, as it was a huge patch for us. Large patches like this always come with a risk that we will screw something up, but it was a pretty smooth launch for as much content as we had in there.

Are you happy with the difficulty of the Dragon Soul heroic encounters, or do you think the bosses are dying too fast?
We are pretty happy with the current difficulty, the first boss is designed to be pretty easy, and the next tier of hardcore raiders are at the second or third boss, which is pretty much where we want them to be. The top tier guilds are going through it quickly, as they always do, but they make hundreds of attempts on each boss. Everyone is about where they should be right now.

Recently you made it so that casters with shields can no longer roll on offhand items, but in previous tiers those items have been very competitive for those specs. Why was this changed?
That's only in Raid Finder, and we made the change to restrict certain items to certain classes to prevent things like hunters needing on strength swords. We debated the offhand change a lot and we knew that some of the shaman might be unhappy with the fact that we are making them use the shield when they might want to use an offhand, but we also thought the mages, priests, and druids would be upset that the shaman got to roll on the offhand and the shield when they could only roll on the offhand. It could have gone either way and we understand that some players are upset at the way it went. Once players progress to normal mode, they can still use the offhands, so it is only a Raid Finder issue.

You can easily max out Justice and Valor points right now, so do you plan on adding anything like pets, mounts, or vanity gear to provide some use for the points?
We talked about it in the past, but we like the way it works now where players hit the cap quickly by doing whatever content they want. We don't want players to feel like they have to log in every night to earn as many Valor points as possible.

Some guilds are doing up to 20 LFR runs in a week to maximize the amount of gear they can get...
Yeah, fortunately that isn't very widespread. It is hard to discourage, and if they are enjoying it and it doesn't hurt game balance, we are okay with that.

Is LFR going to remain a current raid only tool, or will we be able to use it from Dragon Soul onwards?
Nope, we want to use it from Dragon Soul onwards. We would have loved to turn on LFR for all of the old content in the game, but Raid Finder was actually going to be a Patch 5.0+ feature. Fairly late we thought that it would be great to get into Patch 4.3, but up until the very end it wasn't clear if it would be ready for Patch 4.3. However, we were able to finish it in time with Dragon Soul functionality. If there is time in the future, we would like to go back and get at least some of the older content into it.

Will there be another patch before Mists of Pandaria?
We said that we are not going to do another tier of raiding content and PvP season, but we will do the normal pre expansion launch patch. This would include things like the new talents and the other big mechanics changes coming in the expansion, along with the launch event that deals with the Horde vs Alliance story and the introduction of the new continent. The launch event will be similar in magnitude to what we did for Wrath of the Lich King and Burning Crusade.

Cataclysm brought us guild perks to make raiding easier like Mass Resurrection, Mass Summoning, and lower durability reduction on death. How high do you think the guild level is going to increase to in Mists of Pandaria and what kind of new guild perks do you think we will see?
We aren't going to double the number of guild levels or anything like that. We had to make up for the lack of it in previous expansions this time around. Players can expect a few more levels, nothing like thirty or forty more. We haven't talked much about the perks guilds will receive yet, but they will be similar to the existing perks. One idea was cheaper transmogrification, which could be fun for players.

Has there been any progress made on making items account bound and not server bound since you last commented on it?
We would still love to do it, it isn't a design problem as much as a technical one. We are doing a lot of work to get achievements to be account wide, and it is possible that some of the work we do there will let us do the same thing for items. We can't promise anything though, because it could be the case that the first 90% of the work is really easy, and the last 10% is more difficult. Catching all of the exploits and bugs are part of what makes this something that is hard to do.

Will the under construction parts of the Darkmoon Faire get filled out before Mists of Pandaria, or is this something that won't be done until later?
We have vague plans, along the lines of "Hey, we could add a haunted house here", but nothing solid. I would be surprised if it was expanded upon anytime soon, we might add something for the launch event. This depends on the players' reactions to the current one, if they feel like they are running out of things to do, or if there is a lot of love for certain minigames or parts of the Faire, we might be able to add something else. It is hard to provide enough content so that people never run out of things to do, so we are pacing ourselves with the Faire, expanding on it over time.

Items from Archaeology have low item levels compared to the new and easy to access gear added in Patch 4.3, Are there any plans to scale or add new Archaeology items that will be relevant to the current content?
We will likely add new items, we didn't want to compete with heirlooms and give alt characters more gear than they could possibly use, allowing them to level without caring at all about loot gained while leveling. We like the idea of artifacts remaining something that you can trade between characters on your account. If you get a healer trinket that you can't use right now because you don't have a healer, it could be something you use one day, rather than solving your healer trinket problems forever.

With the advent of LFR, casual players can see all of the content, while Heroic raids seem to be harder now. Is this type of difficulty something you want to move forward doing?
The advantage of having three difficulty levels is that we can tailor each one to the audience. Before LFR we could target Normal difficulty raids at organized guilds, which left nothing for PuGs to do, or we could target them at PuGs, making them too easy for organized guilds. This would leave normal guilds only Heroic difficulty for a challenging encounter, leaving nothing for the more hardcore guilds to do. The three difficulty levels let us tailor each difficulty so that everyone has something to do.

Are there any plans to promote Voice Chat use?
The Voice Chat we included is not a good feature. We tried, we made some mistakes, and we accept that it isn't something used by a lot of players. It is on the wishlist of things we would eventually like to improve. A big thing it is missing now that we would like to fix is the ability to communicate with people before you get into the game, having to be logged in to use it makes it less useful than something like Ventrilo or Mumble.

Are you planning on adding chat channels for healing, DPS, and tanking in LFR?
We haven't thought about it, but it wouldn't be hard to do. We would just add people to the channel based on their role.

Okay, great. Thank you so much for your time!

Winter Veil Changes
Blizzard has made a few changes to Winter Veil this year, including making You're a Mean One... into a group quest.

He would be difficult to defeat on your own, but anyone in the area is allowed to loot the Stolen Treats after he is dead and free Metzen. Doing so will reward you with a Stolen Present, which can contain a number of things, including previous year's gifts, Lump of Coal, and a Miniature Winter Veil Tree.





EU Celestial Steed and Pandaren Monk 50% Off
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Need to complete your pet collection? Want to travel Azeroth in style? Now is the perfect time, because during this holiday season you can trade up to an epic Celestial Steed mount or get the noble Pandaren Monk companion at half price! Click here to take advantage of this great offer.

But don´t wait too long, because this promotion ends on January 2!

MMO-Champion T-Shirts from J!NX
For a limited time at J!NX, get $10 off when you spend $35 or more on Curse merchandise! Simply use code MILKANDCOOKIES at checkout. There’s still time left to order for the Holidays, but the deal ends on December 18th at midnight, so don’t wait! Please note that this offer can’t be combined with any other offers or discounts.





New Warcraft Fan Art
The World of Warcraft Fan Art Section has been updated with fourteen new pieces of fan artwork.



This article was originally published in forum thread: Interview with Greg Street (Ghostcrawler), Winter Veil, EU Blizzard Sale, Fan Art started by chaud View original post
Comments 127 Comments
  1. Grimbold21's Avatar
    Voice chat....really? Did you run out of imagination or what?
  1. phai's Avatar
    Most awesome Q&A ever. Really. *yawn*
  1. Tomsboll's Avatar
    why does 3 holiday events in a row have weapons for rogues? brewfest hallowen and chrstmans, 2 daggers one mace and one sword all agility. stop this bloody rogue favoritism.. even dragon soul have way to much weapon loots only usable by rogues (daggers and swords)
  1. Ghihom's Avatar
    One question she should have asked is why they decided to make a rouge only legendary when in ghostcrawler's previous statements he stated that they would never have a rouge only legendary because only one class would be able to use it(he was asked this specific question on the q&a in blizzcon at one point I think).but no 4.3 introduced what he said they would "never" do. Dual daggers would have been fine, if enh shams, confused fury warriors, and hunters would be able to use as well as rouges, especialy with the difference in time and dificulty to obtain these daggers to all previous legendaries first forms. in 4.2 you needed 25 embers and a raid fight, in ICC u needed 25 primordial seranite, in ulduar u needed 25 legendary shards, in BC u needed a tiny ass drop chance, in naxx u needed shards to make the staff, a number i do not know of. but this one only requies to pickpocket a boss and do a bunch of solo quests and 24 hrs of wiaitng i guess the 24 hrs is the colletion quest on this legendary.
  1. Masternewt's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Nekosom View Post
    You entitled children really expect everything. "Grr, this completely free site I contribute nothing to didn't ask questions I approve of! Grumble grumble I want cookie!" Here's a lesson in etiquette kids. You say, "Thank you Boubouille for going through the effort of getting this interview entirely for the sake of your viewers." And then, you shut up.
    You want to teach us "kids", as you call those you want to demeen due to not sharing your fanboy view with you, by quoting etiquette, while at the same time your attempt at a conversation starts off by trying to insult me? Well done, big guy, you sure showed me. Perhaps mmochamp will give you a special forum title if you suck enough of their orificies, seeing as how this forums is obviously your alpha and omega of self ego stroking.

    Anyway, if you claim these interviews are nothing but promotion - done by a fan site - then I suppose mmochamp got paid for doing this and publishing it? The magazine I work for also has some promotional interviews which are part of this or that marketing campaign, but those aren't done by our journalists, but by their PR people and they pay us to publish them. In turn, by law, we must include a disclaimer with those interviews, saying it's a promotional text - hence, biased.

    Well, I suppose your come back will include more randomized yappering about imaginary friends and knowledge of PR, so I just wasted 2 minutes writing a reply to some social troglodyte. Eh, the joke's on me.

    Anyway, to follow your etiquette advice: Thanks MMO Champ. Thanks for nothing. Now I'll kindly shut up and let the real think tanks here praise zero value production as a gift from their digital gods.
  1. Dee-Jay Delicious's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Thundertom View Post
    I'm sorry to disagree with you Boub, but people are playing 4.3 now, apparently there is class imbalance now, and not in MoP. I can imagine people being upset about it not being fixed. If it's always going to be fixed in a future patch, it's not getting fixed. If you're going to do a 4.3 interview and not an MoP interview, I'd say Korgoth has a very valid point.

    I honestly didn't find the interview too exciting either. Questions were asked, and the answers given were always confirmed, never questioned.
    But Boub is right.

    Class balance questions are pointless because they are rarely objective. Class balance also tends to change from patch to patch so each phase of OPness is of limited duration. Ghostcrawler really can't say anything beyond that any imbalance will be addressed in the coming patch.

    In any case, 4.3 class balance issues would be prostponed until 5.0 anyway.

    And let's be honest here for a second. Overall class balance has been pretty solid in Cataclysm.
  1. wiIdi's Avatar
    Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
    Before LFR we could target Normal difficulty raids at organized guilds, which left nothing for PuGs to do, or we could target them at PuGs, making them too easy for organized guilds.
    before LFR you were searching for the right decision, should normal difficulty be for pugs or organized raids? and somehow completely ignored the fact that there is already hard mode for people who want challenge and decided that the normal difficulty should be for organized guilds as well. What made you think that leaving both, hard and normal mode for organized guilds and nothing for the rest is the right decision?

    Wouldn't it have make more sense to leave normal mode to pugs and causals, and hard mode for guilds who like challenge?
  1. DissPanda's Avatar
    Ooh look. Another dagger from a world event.....
  1. Lumpi's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Korgoth View Post
    Yeah well F%&^ that. 4.3 is the current patch, 4.3 is a terrible patch as it did nothing to fix the hugely obvious pvp imbalances, and in fact made them worse then before. A real Q and A should have asked about it. But this is just another PR department garbage Q and A that MMO-C puts up to get page views, and wouldnt dare to ask a real question because then they might get cut off from Blizzard's favor.
    Well it seems like someone lost a bit too often there... I don't know in witch time the pvp in wow was balanced as you would consider that all classes have legimate counters and the same value in arena or bgs... I think the answer is never here, the only thing you want is some piece of the op-cake if people cry about imbalance then they want to say "my class sucks because i can't faceroll it, plz give me the fun back which only op-ness can provide". Try to balance that many speccs and you will find it impossible without making every specc nearly the same or without taking something from one specc which is considered op but without it they might miss a counter against another class which is then op, you see your rage is useless until you provide some magical fun way of making every class playable, not boring, but also balanced...
  1. dotSeed's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by wiIdi View Post
    Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
    Before LFR we could target Normal difficulty raids at organized guilds, which left nothing for PuGs to do, or we could target them at PuGs, making them too easy for organized guilds.
    before LFR you were searching for the right decision, should normal difficulty be for pugs or organized raids? and somehow completely ignored the fact that there is already hard mode for people who want challenge and decided that the normal difficulty should be for organized guilds as well. What made you think that leaving both, hard and normal mode for organized guilds and nothing for the rest is the right decision?

    Wouldn't it have make more sense to leave normal mode to pugs and causals, and hard mode for guilds who like challenge?
    Are you nuts? There’s a huge gap between Normal mode clearing guilds and Heroic mode clearing guilds. You can’t lump them in to one difficulty and expect both to be happy. The whole point of LFR is now you can clear a raid with little effort in a PUG without watering down Normals, which should be balanced for the mere mortal raiding guilds. Instead of funnelling them in to the first ⅓ or ½ of Heroics and hitting a brick wall.

    Quote Originally Posted by Masternewt View Post
    You want to teach us "kids", as you call those you want to demeen due to not sharing your fanboy view with you [...]
    Yes, it’s such a fanboy view that developer interviews are PR motivated. It’s not like that’s the expected behaviour of the whole goddamn industry. What do you expect to do? Shame the developers in to making 180° turns on game design decisions they’ve discussed internally for months?
  1. Borzo's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Tikaru View Post
    "My class is nerfed to the ground and that class is overpowered."

    News at 11.
    Just because you've gotten used to being treated like crap doesn't make it any more okay.

    Class imbalances have like the one between mage/warrior have no real reason to exist. It's just that Blizzard doesn't care enough to fix it. And they hope that the players have gotten so used to it that they won't mind. But it's still not okay.
  1. JestersShadow's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by zrankfappa View Post
    Hey Greg! Why Does LFR always show 0 of 8 bosses down when the queue pops, regardless of the actual number of bosses down? Are you trying to break our spirits?
    I always get the correct number unless I join madness in which it will say 0/8 even though you can only defeat 4.
  1. Redblade's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by dotSeed View Post
    Yes, it’s such a fanboy view that developer interviews are PR motivated. It’s not like that’s the expected behaviour of the whole goddamn industry. What do you expect to do? Shame the developers in to making 180° turns on game design decisions they’ve discussed internally for months?
    Perhaps ask some questions from a critical standpoint without being disrespectful, a simple one would be regarding loot distribution in raids.

    DS are missing heroic cloaks, heroic non spirit caster neck, no way to obtain heroic relics, no heroic non spirit off hand, an ever decreasing amount of off set pieces, off set pieces that where supposed to be more valuable due to reforging.

    LFR loot system was a disaster before it was implemented and anyone that played the game through LFD could point out the flaws of it, yet it was released.

    These issues could have been questioned in a respectful way with ease, even if just to get a general explanation on how they reason on decisions like those, we as customers still pay them over 1 billion dollars a year, I'd say that gives us some right to at least be some what critical when it comes to there design.
  1. Solidusbr's Avatar
    Some freaking cool fan arts this time.
  1. Suedomsa's Avatar
    Very nice fanart, some of you complain about every little thing dont you?
  1. Tokas's Avatar
    what? no mage buffs!?
    OT - rogue weapon again....
  1. garion55's Avatar
    im just shocked this guy still has a job.
  1. Asseymcgee's Avatar
    I noticed this on that Q&A

    "Some guilds are doing up to 20 LFR runs in a week to maximize the amount of gear they can get...
    Yeah, fortunately that isn't very widespread. It is hard to discourage, and if they are enjoying it and it doesn't hurt game balance, we are okay with that."

    Does that mean they changed how the loot system in LFR works? You can keep getting loot from bosses now? Sorry for the noobish question, been away from the game for a while.
  1. Sammonoske's Avatar
    I stopped hoping for a good Q&A years ago. I just wait and see what is in store for. Right now protection warriors and paladins have set sail to disaster island called MoP and we wont get any answers until beta. If that.

    As far as they are concerned, nothing will be fixed unless it is completely broken.
    Hmm.. Level 70 s1-3 gear costs more honor than s4.. strange. That wont be fixed anytime soon.
  1. Bane101's Avatar
    You entitled children really expect everything. "Grr, this completely free site I contribute nothing to didn't ask questions I approve of! Grumble grumble I want cookie!" Here's a lesson in etiquette kids. You say, "Thank you Boubouille for going through the effort of getting this interview entirely for the sake of your viewers." And then, you shut up.[/QUOTE]

    Just for your information, this completely free site generates its revenue from advertising...the advertisers pay money because they know that this site has a large amount of visitors. So in my opinion the readers are entitled to voice an opinion about the quality of the articles on the site. If this seems crazy feel free to correct me someone.
    Also how in gods name did you not get infracted for your comments, but I did for asking someone to proof-read their title. if I had my tinfoil hat around I might form the opinion that wow fans are a lot less likely to recieve an infraction then people who are critical of it.

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