MMO-Champion - Patch 5.0.5, Season 12 Sets Recap, Reddit Dev AMA, Blue Posts, Weekly Roundup
More In Store for Patch 1.0.5, Followers Might Be Getting a Buff, Magic Find and Environment Object Drops, Blue Posts, Tyrael Tattoo

Patch 5.0.5 Live This Week
Patch 5.0.5 is going live today. It contains mostly tooltip updates, as you can see in the diff here.



World of Warcraft Patch 5.0.5 Notes
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
The latest patch notes can always be found at http://www.worldofwarcraft.com/patchnotes/
Classes
  • Many tooltips have been corrected to account for recent class balance adjustments.
  • Druid (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
    • The 25% speed increase granted by Cat Form should no longer stack with the speed increase of Dash.
  • Hunter (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
    • All hunter aspects have been removed from the global cooldown, and they again share a 1 second category cooldown
  • Paladin (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
    • Holy Shock’s base damage has been reduced, and its spellpower coefficient has been increased.
  • Warlock (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
    • Havoc’s cooldown has been reduced from 45 to 25 seconds.
    • The missile effect of Chaos Wave should no longer display erratically when cast on a moving target.

Bug Fixes
  • Well of Eternity
    • The spell graphic for Arcane Bomb during the Queen Azshara encounter has been reduced to a reasonable size.
  • Ulduar
    • The Silence and Pacify effects from Conservator's Grip are now removed from players once they step within the appropriate area radius of a Healthy Spore mushroom.
  • Dragon Soul
    • Player pets should no longer experience pathing issues when attacking Deathwing's Arm Tentacles.
    • Congealing Bloods now move at slower base speed.

  • Master Looters can again assign loot to players in other groups within a raid.
  • The Refer-A-Friend Summon should again function as expected.
  • Worgen players on pre-Cataclysm accounts should be able to accept and complete all Gilneas quests.
  • Players should again be able to teleport out of the Firelands Hatchery in Hyjal if they have completed Aessina's Miracle.
  • Players should be able to use the new Fishing spell where appropriate.
  • Crossing coalesced zone boundaries should not duplicate profession recipes.
  • Players should no longer inappropriately receive the "Requires master riding skill" or "Requires artisan riding skill" errors when attempting to mount certain mounts.
  • Items in the Auction House UI should no longer display in reverse order when sorted.
  • The PvP node capture bar should be back in expected locations such as Wintergrasp, Tol Barad and Venture Bay.
  • Players should no longer be placed into battlegrounds that they have downvoted while queueing for a Random battleground.
  • Flying over Wintergrasp when no battle is active should no longer cause a forced dismount.
  • Accepting a quest that flags you for PvP combat should no longer prevent you from accepting further quests.
  • Resolved a Mac issue related to CPU usage.
  • As he deserves, Crithto should now be attackable by both Alliance and Horde players.

Season 12 Sets Recap
Now that the Season 12 sets are nearly complete we can take a look at the Druid, Paladin, and Priest sets that were updated or lacked a video. You can find the other classes on the Season 12 Armor Sets page with updated screenshots as well.









Mists of Pandaria Approved in China
Mists of Pandaria was recently approved for launch in China. Netease will continue to operate World of Warcraft there, but they have not announced a release date yet.



WoW Developer Reddit AMA, Sept. 11
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
It’s been two weeks since patch 5.0.4 was released and, with only two weeks to go until Mists of Pandaria takes the world by storm, we feel that this is the perfect time to give you access to the World of Warcraft development team. Tomorrow, Tuesday, September 11 beginning at 5:30 p.m. PDT, we’ll be conducting a live developer “Ask Me Anything” (AMA) on /r/WoW. I’ll be on-hand to host the chat and will have Lead Systems Designer Greg Street, Lead Quest Designer Dave Kosak, Lead Encounter Designer Ion Hazzikostas, and Game Director Tom Chilton available to field your questions.

We’ll spend at least an hour working to answer everything possible. So if you have any questions about patch 5.0.4, Mists of Pandaria, and anything else pertaining to World of Warcraft’s story, content, and systems design, come prepared! We want to cover as many different topics as possible and hope to address a wide array of inquiries from participants. We'll be choosing questions based on the information we can reasonably provide, and what kinds of answers we feel will be the most compelling and informative for the entire audience. Be sure to up-vote the questions you’d like to see addressed the most!

If you haven’t done so already, head to reddit and create your account. It’s easy and completely free. Also, keep in mind that /r/WoW is not owned or operated by Blizzard Entertainment. The folks who maintain that subreddit are kind enough to host us, so please be respectful of the great resource they’ve set up for the community.

We hope to hear from you tomorrow!

In other words if any questions on the CRZ come up theyll most likely be brushed aside
Nope! That's the opposite of what an AMA is about. CRZ questions are expected. We see this as a great opportunity to clarify some things about the system

I understand they've made a lot of changes, but this game is 8 years old and they've been working on this stuff for at LEAST the better part of a year, most likely a lot longer than that. There are no answers they can give for a lot of this stuff other than "We're sorry, we screwed up" and that would make them look stupid, so they're going to avoid those questions, legitimate questions, out of pride.
If you think that's the best answer these guys can muster, even to the issues you listed in your post, you don't know them very well.

An AMA isn't about maintaining good appearances, as it seems you implied in your post. It's about having frank discussions with the community in a less formal setting -- a place that happens to have an excellent system of bringing the most popular questions to the top.

So come ask something. And if you don't want to, at least read along and up-vote the questions you'd like to see answered most. That's the important job of the audience.

We'll worry about the part where these four developers want to answer as many questions as possible, in the best and most informative way possible, within a relatively small time frame. It'll be fun. We hope those reading will find it insightful, and we expect to learn a lot from them as well.

To hell with reddit and twitter and facebook!... all the devs should do a strictly Q&A thread here on the wow forums like once a month.
Sometimes different formats work better for different types of content, or avenues for engaging one's audience. Reddit's system for displaying posts based on reader votes makes it ideal for trying to answer the "most important" questions. That is, it's very transparent to you and us what questions most of the readers want to see answered. We tend to get thousands of questions when we hold developer Q&As, so having a system filter those for us by popularity is useful.

We did one of these for Diablo III a couple of months ago and it went quite well. This is our first time hosting a World of Warcraft chat on reddit, so we're very anxious to get it going!

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Beta Class Balance Analysis
Some updates on other recent changes:

Death Knight (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Blood DK
Blood Boil, at very high AP from Vengeance, was hitting harder than Heart Strike. Blood DK DPS was also on the high side. So, we adjusted Blood Boil damage:
  • Changed the damage of Blood Boil; base damage went up by 388%, AP Coefficient went down by 42.7%.
  • Reduced the damage bonus to Blood Boil from Crimson Scourge from 40% to 10%.

Frost DK
Since buffing Death Strike a few weeks ago, it was actually competitive with Obliterate for DW Frost DKs. Since Death Strike is only intended to be used rotationally for Blood (but should still be useful for the healing, at a DPS loss for Frost / Unholy), we made the following change:
  • Reduced the damage of Death Strike from 280% weapon damage to 200% weapon damage and gave Blood a hidden passive which increases Death Strike damage by 40%. This results in no change for Blood, but a 28.6% nerf for Frost / Unholy.

These changes also have the side effect of making Death Siphon hit harder than Death Strike at 55k AP and Heart Strike at 65k AP with a Tier 14 normal weapon which has an ilvl of 489 (it's the same for heroic weapons as well except the break point goes up but never higher than we will realistically have with Vengeance).
Was this intended?

Yes, we’re fine with Death Siphon being a DPS gain in the situation where you have high vengeance but don’t care as much about your defenses. It should never win on defensive value though.

Also, did you dislike Blood being able to sacrifice survival for more damage by replacing Death Strike with Heart Strike?
Not at all. We intend for Blood DKs to do two Heart Strikes instead of a Death Strike when they don’t care as much about their defenses and would rather do more damage. All tanks can trade defenses for more damage, at a steep cost. DKs’ tradeoff was much MUCH better than the other tanks before, so we reduced it. Two Heart Strikes is still more damage than one Death Strike, just not by as huge a margin as before. It should be similar to the other tanks.

I'm just curious if there's a reason to impliment the buff as a hidden passive. WOuld'nt a passive icon in the spellbook for improved deathstrike help new players understand that a Blood DK's Death strike is not the same as a Unholy or Frost DK's Deathstrike? I'm not sure I see the point in 'hiding' this information from players.
We can add the passive visibly to the spell book or just change the tooltip for Blood.

Druid (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Feral Druid
Rake was potentially able to beat Shred, with high mastery, so we moved some damage from Rake to their direct attacks:
  • Increased the damage of Shred by 25%.
  • Increased the damage of Ravage by 25%.
  • Increased the damage of Mangle by 25%.
  • Reduced the damage of Rake by 17%.

Hunter (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Survival Hunter
We wanted to make Explosive Shot more powerful than other shots, such as Arcane. To do so, we shifted some damage from their DoTs:
  • Increased the damage of Explosive Shot by 20%.
  • Reduced the damage of Black Arrow by 25%.
  • Improved Serpent Sting now increases the damage of Serpent Sting by 50%, down from 100%.

Surely this wasn't the sole reason for deciding to nerf Serpent Sting? Personally, I was quite enjoying hunters having something that actually resembled a dot, rather than what serpent sting was and now continues to be: something you only use once per fight (except when target switching). I'm just curious if that's your design intent, and whether having some form of multidotting utility was seen as overpowered.
No, we actually like Survival getting a bit of the multi-dot style. This change shouldn’t invalidate that.

Was it also intended that this change bring down SV's AoE damage? I'm not sure how we were doing at 90 AoEwise, but this definitely has a significant impact.
There was also a recent bugfix which significantly increased Survival’s AoE damage. The instant damage from Improved Serpent Sting would not be dealt if there was already a Serpent Sting on the target that was greater than 15 sec long. This meant that during AoE, when casting Multishot repeatedly, only some of them would trigger the Improved Serpent Sting damage. We fixed that, which also of course increased their AoE damage significantly. The nerf to Improved Serpent Sting and this bugfix offset each other.

Monk (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Brewmaster Monk
It’s a bug that Keg Smash doesn’t refund energy when it misses. We’ll get that fixed. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Lower-level Class Balance Issues & Solutions
Some things to keep in mind:

  • Since this game was first designed, we've had to deal with a certain degree of non-balance at low levels. This is a result of the fact that every class and spec obtains their abilities one at a time as they level (as opposed to, for instance, getting 8 new abilities at level 20 and then nothing until level 30, when you get another 8 new abilities). This is complicated by the fact that some people will twink and use heirlooms, and some will not.
  • We have to find tweaks that we can make that don't force us to then make wholesale changes at level 90.
  • What we're really focusing on here is abilities that hit too hard or too weak (relative to how they feel at 90.) Again, we hear you loud and clear that overall, melee abilities are running low and healing is running too hot.
  • When the solution is "I need very-high-level ability X at a very low level," we're at an impasse, since we have to hold back some abilities and only make them accessible at a higher level, and we want those abilities to feel well-earned.
(Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

World of Warcraft 2
I really hope they will do it some day, but if they do it, they won't do it sooner than 5 years, at least. The idea is basically the same game, but with way better graphics, new features, new NPCs/Items etc etc. It would be cool, because the skeleton would be the same, but the rest would be new.
But that doesn't sound like something that would require an entirely new game though, but of course that is just my personal opinion. As I see it, these things could just as well be upgrades to the current game through patches and expansions, much like what we have seen already in the game's evolution from its release until today.

I think something more would be required in order to rationalise the end of WoW in favour of WoW II. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Blue Tweets
Don't miss the comment about legendary gems in the Character section!
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
PvE
Do you think that LFR should be a little harder, so players cant see the content without SOME effort? (7 AFK'ed on beta LFR)
Current Dragon Soul LFR isn't a great test. It has been out for months, everyone had run it and most out gear it.

Any chance we see Challenge mode raids? Would throw hardcore raiders a bone while not keeping anyone from seeing content.
Could be fun. We'll see how the dungeons work out.

You basically killed 25 man raiding, I can understand this system has eventually some economical benefits for you.
I don't think we compensate enough for the 25 logistical challenges yet. (I only raid 25s.)

Hey GC, dont want this to sound like a rage, but you guys really did a bad job by giving the same lockout for 10 and 25 raids.
This is an interesting topic that I would love to explore more (prob not here). The ICC model had some definite plusses. At the time, 25s told us they didn't want to split up for 10s and 10s told us they didn't want to pug 25s. Also, twice a week raids can mean twice as fast burnout. I can't imagine DS if I had killed Spine twice as much as I did.
you contradict this with pushing players to do LFR though.....
We don't want to push raiders to LFR. That was a consequence of old loot model plus DW weapons and trinkets. Hopefully fixed.

Don't excuse a bad decision with an example of bad content that lasted to long
It would have been the same in BWD. If you can tolerate farming a boss 12 times, then the raid could last 6 weeks or 12.
You can't deny there's been a pretty large drop in 25's to disperse into 10's.
Yeah I agree and I don't like it. Entropy will cause 25s to break down into 10s without strong counter force.
Is in game rewards for overcoming out of game logistical problems a direction really you want to go?
I don't know. I don't think we can solve the logistical problems. You'd end up with LFR, which isn't the solution to this problem.
25s vs 10s -- incentivize officers, not raiders. Raiders don't care much but officers bear the burden of the extra logistics
There's some truth to that, but the raid is also sitting around waiting for 2 more people to login.
Sure, personal responsibility is high in 10 mans but its offset by logistics of organization and spacial requirements. I still think that you're looking at it fairly biased. Just as many 25 man players look down at 10 mans just the same
10s do have more individual responsibility. 25s have more logistical problems. Overall, I'd say 25s have worked out to be harder. It's subjective for sure. I have seen a lot of 25s scale down to 10 and be able to beat a boss that stumped them.

At least put back in the realm first achievements for 25s to make it challenging and more attractive, I mean whats your loss?
People seem to enjoy it and the rewards aren't that amazing....

Are Challenge Mode dungeons harder than heroics? or are they just the same difficulty with a timer on them?
I'd say a little harder. I expect most players who give it a shot can earn bronze eventually. Beyond that...

Is there a plan to remove the Wrath Mounts for Obsidium Sanc and the like? Rumors are causing alot of strife
We make the drop mounts more rare, but haven't touched achievement mounts since Nax.

I hope there's a fight like faction champs in future mop raids
Very controversial encounter. Players loved or hated it.

World
Hey Greg, at the Cataclysm launch in London. You mentioned to me there was a Silithus update on the cards. Still happening?
Sadly, not in the immediate future. You can probably tell we started on it.

If we haven't discovered Pandaria yet then why are there Pandaren in org?
Why is the LK dead from 1-60 then alive 70-80 then dead again 80-90?
Trick question, LK isn't dead at all! Just trapped under ice in Icecrown. Arthas is dead.
No, the lich king is dead and Bolvar Fordragon died with him. Duh. My LK comment was kinda serious. WoW is always in a time paradox. Even when you discover Pandaria, new level 85s won't have. Seeing the Pandaren in SW/Org also helps to build up excitement. It's coming soon!

I know you don't want to talk crz, but at least give a hint about pve people ending up flagged on pvp crz's? Intended or not?
PvP and PvE zones aren't supposed to be merged together. We'll try and clear everything up.

Classes
Do you guys use 3rd party programs to help evaluate class balance (ie SimC, Rawr, Femaledwarf)?
We have our own tools. Looking at 3rd party ones can help us understand player concerns, but take a ton of effort to debug.

What are the reasons for mogging-restrictions for weapons and do we have any chance of seeing them removed/eased?
We just wanted to start out conservative, since it's much easier to be more lenient over time than the reverse.

So you removed head enchants from the game, but left head items that were previously enchanted untouched? Is this intended?
Yeah. You will replace them in just a couple of weeks.

Death Knight (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
So Killing Machine can generally be ignored without altering number KM OB/FS in Practice and Sims any thoughts on the subject?
I've read that. Not sure I buy it yet. Need to try it out some.

Hunter (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Is the behavior on madness/ultraxion of kill command intended? if it comes up in mop will it be adjusted?
Not intended. KC works well on all the MoP bosses.

Paladin (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
I think pallys are in a good spot, but was there a thought process behind giving us a 3sec SotR when the other AMs are 6sec?
Holy Power comes in really fast for Prot because of J / CS changes. We didn't want 100% SotR uptime.

Priest (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Priests Atonement is being learned at 40 instead of the tooltips lv.60.
We lowered Atonement since Archangel was lower level. Tooltips might need time to catch up.

What're your thoughts on Chakra as a niche limitation in a paradigm that doesn't do niches anymore?
I've struggled with this answer a lot, because Chakra works for me as a design in the way old Tree Form did not.

Rogue (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Is it intended that Burst of Speed unstealths you when the timer runs out (while stealthed)?
BoS should unstealth you. If you have Subterfuge, it could be happening on a delay.

Warlock (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Warlock pets seem to be very week as far as durability goes. Any looking into that?
We buffed armor recently for all pets. I believe Wild Imps in particular are missing AoE avoidance (which we can fix).

Warrior (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Are you happy with doubletime? It's only a double charge at the start of the fight, then you have to wait 20secs between each.
Yes. You don't win PvP by Charging on cooldown. Being able to Charge to a mage who Blinks and Charge again is huge.

Can warriors please have rend back? Not sure why we kept deadly calm, but lost rend. Was good vs stealthers, i loved it.
A lot of warriors hated it. Mixed feedback like this is some of the hardest for us to address. You do have Deep Wounds.
Deep wounds doesn't really help when they dodge mortal strike, and rend ppl hated because of LTTS.. also the new TFB is bad
Disagree that it was all LTTS. Some just hated having to open with a low-damage "maintenance" ability. I get that some liked it.
Who hated Rend, and where was the "strong argument" for it's removal? Colossus Smash is BY FAR more widely hated.
I bet removing CS would be hugely controversial, more so than Rend.

I fear 5 stacks of tfb becoming a problem in pvp even under extremely rare circumstances. tfb benefiting heroic strike paired with the hindering strikes gylph feels very strange. perhaps it would be better to benefit slam instead? Also, Thunderclap rage cost feels too high in arms pvp.
Perhaps, but in general it's hard for extremely rare circumstances to be a big problem. Overall, we didn't add much CC per character. We added options to have say a stun instead of a root (but not both).

Character
Will there be a way to move legendary gem from say raid finder weapon to normal to heroic version as we get them?
No, but you can get more. Needed a solution for that, DW, dual spec etc.
You can get more gems by getting it from the npc or by doing the whole questline (collecting etc) again?
Not the whole quest line. Consider the quest as unlocking the ability, almost like a rep reward.

Did you ever thought about making Justice / Honor points account wide but restricting the number of amount spent per week?
Considered it. At some point though you are spending all your time on your main just to power up your alts.
I don't think that's true. A lot of the currency is wasted on mains once they hit a certain level of progression.
Sure, but if you could just siphon it to your alts, doesn't that mean you just cap out all your characters faster?

Is there any reason behind Strength based fist weapons being non existant? They were always my favorite weaps as a warrior
Usually just loot table space. Same with caster fists and axes.

I haven't gotten my Glory of the Cata Hero yet because you guys put an MoP Achieve in the list.
That's just a bug. If you have all the achievements but the MoP one, you will get credit next time we patch. Apologies.

The Future
Do you think there's a problem with player expectation inflation? At some point you guys simply can't make us happy?
I think that point was 4 expansions ago!

Is it true that there is only gonna be one more expansion for WoW after MoP?
Extremely unlikely. Keep playing and we'll keep expansioning.

What happened to the Proving Grounds? Gone the Path of the Titans? What was your intent for it? Keep up the good work!
We still like Proving Grounds. Hopefully in 5.X. We still like Paths too, but it's a much bigger project.

Just tested the ingame voice com - not very good. Planning on improving?
Wait, we have ingame voice? (JK)

Misc
So when do you have time for all these tweets?
My day is a lot of meetings. When one ends early etc., then I have a lot of downtime and not enough time to start something new.

Tell me that MoP release wont be like D3... I mean a full week of login errors and eternal queues
Well, Pandaria is already there - you just can't visit it. If servers are stable now, they should stay stable. /Crosses fingers.

Pan-dare-ee-yuh or Pan-dahr-ee-yuh? Similar on race pronunciation for our epicurean friends, if you please.
Like bacteria.

After so long, do you find it hard to come up with new ideas to keep the game interesting?
No, the challenge actually is new ideas that don't bloat the game or change it into something that isn't WoW.

Why hasn't wow ever made it to japan? lack of interest?
Without stereotyping, I'll just say that Japanese players have different tastes that are tricky for western developers to grok.

Broke!
Fel orc broken hats is a known bug. Shows how the most random stuff can break.

Any change to maybe get levels a tad easier in guilds with low pops? Starting a new guild is hard, people want perks.
Tried them lately? They are super fast in 5.0.

What's an Inferno Strike team and what do they do!
Blizzard uses strike teams to give focused feedback from other teams. The one I mentioned was for D3's hardest difficulty.

Hey did you ever play Star Wars Galaxies ? If so, Did you find gameplay more compelling during Pre-CU, CU or NGE ?
Would you believe WoW was my first MMO? In before "That explains everything."
IMO that's a good thing. The MMO industry (incl WoW) was really stagnant around the time you came on, fresh ideas = good
Now, I've played a lot since then. First time I played Warcraft 1, I didn't get it. Then designed RTS for 10 years.

Curse Weekly Roundup
Pico updates us on Minecraft, Heart of the Swarm, City of Heroes, Fallout, Angry Birds, Sifl and Olly and more.

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