MMO-Champion - No Item Upgrades, 5.2 LFR Item Level, PTR Class Balance, Blue Posts, Weekly Roundup
Patch 1.0.7 Preview

Patch 5.2 - No Item Upgrades
Ghostcrawler clarified his previous statement and let us know that no gear will be upgraded at all once Patch 5.2 is released, as the NPC will be removed.



Patch 5.2 - LFR Item Level Requirement
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Just wanted to share some updated info we have with you guys: At this moment our intent is to change Thunder King’s LFR ilvl requirement to 480, we also want to lower the Honor gear in patch 5.2 from 483 to 476, compensating with some bonus PvP stats, so that the gear remains as powerful for PvP but not allow players to use it as a quick shortcut into LFR.

Like always, everything is subject to change, we’re still in PTR stage folks! And we all know that even on live things can still change, while we always strike to avoid doing that (and that’s why we have a PTR), gameplay comes first, so if a change is urgently needed, we do our best to apply it as fast as possible.

PTR Class and Set Bonus Issues
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
PvP Power
  • On live, PvP Power grants 0% healing to Balance, Feral, Windwalker, Retribution, Shadow, Enhancement and Elemental. In the next 5.2 build, this number will be 25% (or half of what a healing spec gets). We agree that PvP healing feels too weak for these hybrid classes. We also don't think Shadow really needs this buff, so we will likely offset it in other ways.
  • We are working on a blog (hopefully next week) to explain some of the other changes to PvP gear in 5.2. We hear your concerns and are trying to address them.

Paladin (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • The Protection 2pc is additive. It's duration is 5sec per Holy Power. We realize there are concerns about this enabling block capping, and are keeping an eye on this, and will adjust if necessary to make sure it doesn’t happen, even later in the expansion.
  • The Protection 4pc does incentivize Unbreakable Spirit. We’re considering possible revisions but want to try it like this for now. It's currently "You gain 1 Holy Power for each 20% of your health taken as damage while Divine Protection is active."
  • The Retribution 2pc is a debuff on the target, and does not stack or roll. With Glyph of Mass Exorcism, the debuff will be applied to all targets hit by the Exorcism. It affects all of your Holy damage. Yes, that includes Seal of Truth, Censure ticks, and Hand of Light. Censure ticks are affected per tick
  • whether it was up when Censure was applied doesn't matter. It functions similar to the increased magic damage taken raid debuff, except is Holy-only and self-only. Clipping some debuffs when you get back to back Art of War procs is expected, and balanced around.
  • The Retribution 4pc does grant a self-buff that is consumed by the next TV, and does not stack. Wasting some procs is expected, and balanced around. Yes it is a single-target benefit that won't increase DPS on AE fights. We don't want to be in such a limited design space (we're talking about the 15th tier here after all) that every set bonus must be super generic and work in every situation. If anything, we'd rather the Ret bonus be even higher for single-target and paladins will just be stronger at single-target and weaker at AE once they have the set bonus than they are in other tiers. Set bonuses are one of the few chances we have to change what your character does (within reason) aside from all of your numbers just getting bigger.
  • We changed the Repentance cast time to make it consistent with other cast time crowd control. A 1.5 sec cast time (reduced by haste) gives little opportunity for interruption.

Rogue (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • During Shuriken Toss, your auto attacks are replaced with throwing Shurikens, which do 80% weapon damage, but are on the 'yellow combat table', meaning they don't glance, and don't suffer the Dual Wield miss penalty. The 80% number was chosen because that approximately offsets those other benefits.
  • In our above description of Blade Flurry, 'normal' means the same as it previously did; that is to say, the damage that the ability would have done had it hit the secondary target.
  • The 2pc does encourage using Rupture as Combat.
  • Burst of Speed saying "movement-reducing" means that it no longer breaks roots, but does break snares.
  • We are experimenting with allowing Smoke Bomb to reduce the damage done to allies by 20%. We agree that rogues are lacking in the group utility department and we'd like to see less use of Smoke Bomb strictly as an offensive ability in PvP.
  • We are going to reduce the PvP set bonus from +50 energy to +30 energy.

Monk (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Storm, Earth, and Fire does not affect Xuen's damage. The spirits benefit from your Tiger Eye Brew. We agree that a spell with "storm, earth and fire" in the name sounds like a shaman spell, but Warcraft 3 established it as a Pandaren monk ability.
  • The Mistweaver 2pc is multiplicative. The first target gets normal healing, the second gets 115% of normal, and the third gets 132.25% of normal.

Hunter (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • The 2pc and 4pc both can crit.
  • Direhorn Stampede are everything you dream them to be.

Druid (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Please note that Restoration Mushrooms are currently incorrectly absorbing 33% of overheal each, instead of 25%.

Shaman (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • The Elemental 4pc does trigger from Overloads.
  • We're still iterating on the cooldown/potency/duration of Elemental Mastery. In the next PTR build, it will likely be a 90 sec cooldown.
  • We are experimenting with removing the attenuation of Chain Lightning. This means Chain Lightning won't do less damage on subsequent targets.

Priest (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • The Shadow 2pc does impact Shadow Word: Insanity, which we're working to resolve. It extends existing effects, preserving their same damage (not recalculating).
  • We are considering making the glyphs of Desperation and Inner Focus passive for Discipline.
  • We are considering giving Focused Will to Holy as well as Discipline.
  • We did not buff PvP Power for healer damage as we did for DPS healing. However, we believe that Discipline specifically might need more damage. One potential solution is to nerf Atonement healing but raise damage so there is no net healing change.

Warlock (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • With the 2pc, an Incinerate crit has an 8% chance to generate 4/10 of an ember. Yes, this will apply to Fire and Brimstone Incinerate.
  • We are strongly considering allowing Dark Intent to provide Stamina so that warlocks don't feel like they must use their imp.

Warrior (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • A Prot Warrior using 2 pieces of the DPS set will get 1.0 RPPM of the Enrage.
  • We agree with concerns that the new Arms rotation doesn't involve much rage management. We are considering a small rage cost for Overpower. Arms will likely need some additional retuning of damage because of the changes to Overpower, Taste for Blood and Slam
  • we haven't completed tuning yet.
  • We made a change to warriors to double the effect of haste for them. This is similar to the shaman Flurry benefit, but is passive and not tied to an ability. We want to make haste a better stat for warriors without it eclipsing stats like crit
  • we aren't trying to force every warrior to reforge.

Promises
We're not making any (except maybe that Direhorn Stampede bit). We're providing you some notes of changes we are currently trying in order to provide you context for some of the other class changes. Many of these may not make it to the live game -- that is the nature of a PTR. As always, we appreciate feedback on any of this.

Monk (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Storm, Earth, and Fire: The spirits will not mirror non-damaging abilities like Leg Sweep or Charging Ox Wave. They will mirror damaging abilities like Chi Wave. In the cases of damaging abilities that also heal (Chi Wave, Zen Sphere, and Chi Burst), their healing and yours is reduced. But for other heals which aren’t mirrored (like Healing Sphere, Blackout Kick from the front, or consuming a Healthstone), it won’t reduce the healing. In the case of Zen Sphere, the spirits will cast it on themselves when you cast it on anyone. Note that many of these things aren’t working yet, but should in the next PTR build, or perhaps the one after that. Also, in the next PTR build, attempting to cast it on a target that already has one of your spirits on it will recall that spirit.

Shaman (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • The Enhancement 4pc triggers each time Windfury procs, not for each attack it generates.

Paladin (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • If you have the Protection 2pc, casting Word of Glory again when you already have the block buff will replace the existing buff, if the new one is longer duration. It won’t extend.
  • The Protection 4pc will not count for Holy Avenger.

Priest (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • The Healing 2pc causes each Prayer of Mending Heal to heal for 10% more than the last; it’s multiplicative. 100%->110%->121%->133%->146%.

Druid (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • The Restoration 4pc causes each Rejuvenation tick to heal for 6% more than the last; it’s multiplicative. 100%->106%->112%->119%->126%->134%->etc.

Warrior (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)

Hunter (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Some have asked why the 2pc procs more often for Survival than Marksmanship. Marksmanship typically has more haste than Survival, such as from Steady Focus. (Remember, RealPPM proc rates scale with your haste).

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Throne of Thunder and Mounts
Finally, I think we need to be able to mount in that instance. I think travel time is just going to be way too much of a problem otherwise.
The fact that you cannot currently mount in the exterior ruins section of the zone is a bug. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

PvP Gear Changes Blog Post
Other than the blog that you have linked from October, is there anything else you can "hint" to us that is more recent that we can possibly expect in the near future?
Not just yet. Soon™. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
World
Incentive to explore has always been a weak point in WoW,Can we expect more achievements like "Lost and Found" to remedy this?
We just have to make exploring really exploring and not download a mod / visit a website. (Source)

just wanted to clarify something r u now or have you ever been completely or partially against flying mounts?
It's not that simple. It would be hard to remove them, yet we don't like how they minimize exploration, travel & sense of danger. (Source)
Isnt minimizing travel the whole point of a mount? Also, they dont minimize exploration, in my case they improve it
The journey is a big (biggest?) part of most fantasy tales. For me, exploration needs a hint of danger to be interesting. (Source)
that doesn't really answer my question
It's not a question with a simple answer. Sorry. If I could go back in time, I would argue for much stricter limits on them. (Source)
I remember reading a PvP blog that flying mounts made escaping too easy, do you think "hardened shell" is enough?
It was just an experiment to see how it felt. (Source)

Do you feel like CRZ takes away the one advantage small pop servers had of less competition for rare spawns?
We don't really want small pop servers to have advantages though. We think larger pop servers are more fun. (Source)

I know u r concerned about the role of guilds in xrealm raiding, but isn't the point of being n a guild 2 b with ppl u like?
There are still benefit in realm community. Queuing features are a necessary evil, not because we don't value community. (Source)

Misc
I have friends who've already tried the expac. They got to 90 and they've already given up, "I have to log in EVERY day....!?"
The opposite extreme is "Why am I playing this game? I log in once a week and then there is nothing else to do." (Source)

Remember, while convenience is nice, accomplishments are rewarding. Accomplishments with too much convenience may not feel rewarding. (Source)
Parapharsing someone I can't recall: "We don't play this game because it is easy, we play it because it is hard."
In China, I hear a lot: I don't play the game because it's fun. I play for prestige. (Source)

Being a casual has nothing to do with what GC is saying.
In fact casual players are probably more likely to opt out of hard content for which rewards will be quickly replaced.
Also i believe the "accomplishment envy" faction is small. And why should a game be catered to envy?
.It's not about that. It's "Why should I bother on this tough boss when the new content will just invalidate all the gear anyway?" (Source)

yes it does. I wish GC would just announce once and for all the game is tailored for the hardcores.
It's not. Not sure there are 10 million hardcore players in the world. (Source)

More and more people are heading to private vanilla servers, why not just make an official one?
We don't want to maintain two versions of the game (and we don't believe that the vanilla crowd would be happy with no support). (Source)

Nobody cares about dummy dps because there is no movement involved and such bosses dont exist in mop.
If only that were true. Players use simulated dummy dps as evidence all the time. (Source)

Diablo III Patch 1.0.7 Preview
The Patch 1.0.7 PTR is coming soon, but Blizzard released a nice preview of what to expect. For the full details, check out the entire post on Diablofans!

  • You are now able to duel other players. There is no scorekeeping system or objectives, just combat in four areas with up to four players.
  • Some minor balancing (buffs) to the Wizard and Monk classes.
  • New rare crafting recipes that are purchased, world drops, or have a chance to drop from certain bosses when you have five stacks of Nephalem Valor.
  • Another new tier of gems, Marquise gems.
  • Monster Power support in public games and increased experience bonuses for all MP levels.
  • Other small monster changes and quality of life improvements.



Curse Weekly Roundup
In this week's roundup: Blizzard announces they've raised 2.3 million dollars for Sandy victims, Curse has an exclusive with the team from God of War, Cyberpunk rocks the world with their debut trailer, and Black Ops 2 wins big this year.

This article was originally published in forum thread: No Item Upgrades, 5.2 LFR Item Level, PTR Class Balance, Blue Posts, Weekly Roundup started by chaud View original post
Comments 114 Comments
  1. malletin's Avatar
    atleast i wont feel like i need to be valor capped each week ( im usually capped by thursday just by doing lfr,mogu'shan vaults normal and usually 3/6 HoF, after those raids all i need is a daily heroic and maybe a daily scenario ) so in reality i can log on wednesday and thursday and then not log on until monday evening if i so desire.
  1. Steamwheedle's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Shampro View Post
    5.2 has a new season, so everything you said doesnt really matter to pvp at all.

    Also is hilarious how many of you pay 0 attention, the Item upgrade is planned to come back in none raid patches (i.e. 5.3) acourding to GC, so it will stilll serve as a good catch up for returning players. Please do research before you make walls to blindly complain.
    I did catch something a while back where they said they would give us plenty of notice if a season was ending. I haven't seen that, maybe I just missed it or something. To give you the benefit of the doubt, I tried googling heaps of combinations of "pvp season 12 ending/end date", etc. Didn't return any results. I even checked the current PTR patch notes to see if there was anything about season 13 starting. Nada. I didn't PvP during Cata, so maybe I've missed some things, but I do know that other content that has been datamined from new builds on the PTR (Heirloom rings besides the Kalu'ak Derby one) haven't always been included in the PTR, let alone made it to live.

    As for the rest of your angry rebuke, I'm not concerned about 5.3. That's going to be released at an indeterminate time in the future, and as others have pointed out, they haven't confirmed that the NPC is returning.

    Quote Originally Posted by chrisisvacant View Post
    Why are you being so dramatic? Far and few between are the times Blizz has ever sold its playerbase down the river, so please cut this apocalyptic talk out.
    "Dramatic"? "Apocalyptic"? I was just pointing out a pattern of neglect for PvP. You're putting words in my mouth, I never said anything about them "[selling their] playerbase down the river", all I said was that if they're looking at making a change to balance something in PvE, and it inadvertently imbalances something in PvP, that they are either unaware of the imbalance or unconcerned about it.

    There's a lot of QQ about how players were "forced" to valor cap. That's absolutely ridiculous. You're not forced to do anything in WoW, but if you want to have better things, you have to be willing to put the time in. Some days I think of doing dailies, and the idea just repulses me so much that I don't bother with them. Other times, I'll do them because I want something from them (not because I enjoy them).

    Nobody's forcing you to cap points to upgrade your gear, you just want better gear - or, alternatively, for other people who are willing to put more time into it, to have that advantage denied of them. You don't want to cap your points, but you don't want anybody else to be able to either so they can't do more damage than you, or take your precious raid spot. It's pure envy, and it's really, really pathetic.
  1. Nathiest's Avatar
    Expect long lines in front of the Item Upgrade guy before he goes on spring break.
  1. Kaeth's Avatar
    So, the upgrade system is on its way out in 5.2. Such a great change for all of you claiming to be "forced" to cap valor every week. Have no fear, in 5.2 you'll instead be back to having absolutely no incentive whatsoever to farm valor after a few weeks of raiding. Get used to seeing one-hour queue times on 5-mans on your alts per early-to-mid Cata when only alts have any reason to care about them.

    Odd how it's the "hardcore" crowd -- some of whose members frequently denounce the "casuals" for not wanting to put in any effort for anything -- who are complaining about being "forced" to do something to aid in their progression. And those "casuals" (and alts, as well) be damned if removing this system just happens to hinder their progression. A few thousand people don't like it.

    Good design move, dev team. A vocal minority complains about "having" to do something in a game, so you break the entire system to compensate. Bravo.
  1. Zhenne's Avatar
    I'm confused as to why the ability to upgrade gear is going to be removed in 5.2 when it was just introduced. I thought this was supposed to be a way to use Justice and Valor points when we have all of the gear that we need.

    Why is it going to be removed?
  1. theturn's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Paisti View Post
    Thank you for removing item upgrades. Felt as a necessity. And endless grind.

    -Heroic raider-
    How so? If you truly are a raider then you would know that raiding gets you about 65% of the way to cap if you do dailies you easily hit cap and since tokens are near required you are doing dailies. As for the upgrade, its anything but required. Besides weapons its such a tiny upgrade, about 2% dps gain, and even less valuable for tanks and healers. And if you really thought you were going to upgrade every piece of gear then you're clearly not good at math. If you want a necessary grind then dailies for tokens are still in play.

    I'm happy they aren't allowing you to upgrade new gear in 5.2 but not letting you upgrade you old gear is dumb.
  1. Zace's Avatar
    For those of you saying "upgrade your gear while you can" they already said the upgrades are being removed from gear once 5.2 hits so there's no point of rushing to upgrade your gear since it will be gone anyway (even from gear you already upgraded).
  1. Venant's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Zace View Post
    For those of you saying "upgrade your gear while you can" they already said the upgrades are being removed from gear once 5.2 hits so there's no point of rushing to upgrade your gear since it will be gone anyway (even from gear you already upgraded).
    It seems like in the 3rd tweet they explicitly stated that items that have been upgraded already will not be reverted
  1. nekobaka's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Kaeth View Post
    So, the upgrade system is on its way out in 5.2. Such a great change for all of you claiming to be "forced" to cap valor every week. Have no fear, in 5.2 you'll instead be back to having absolutely no incentive whatsoever to farm valor after a few weeks of raiding. Get used to seeing one-hour queue times on 5-mans on your alts per early-to-mid Cata when only alts have any reason to care about them.

    Odd how it's the "hardcore" crowd -- some of whose members frequently denounce the "casuals" for not wanting to put in any effort for anything -- who are complaining about being "forced" to do something to aid in their progression. And those "casuals" (and alts, as well) be damned if removing this system just happens to hinder their progression. A few thousand people don't like it.

    Good design move, dev team. A vocal minority complains about "having" to do something in a game, so you break the entire system to compensate. Bravo.
    GC made mentions about having to make choices between the VP gear and gear upgrades which is something that affects those who dont do raids more than those who are hard core progression raiders. He also tweeted that players shouldnt feel like it is mandatory to VP cap every week. This change and your rant points more towards the system not being friendly for "casual" players who have other things to do with their time while the "no lifers" ether hard core raiders or not, dont have an issues with hitting VP cap and are the ones who are loosing out.

    Sounds more like you are one of those no lifers who have a hatred against those with a life and are making raiders your scapegoat.
  1. Captiosus's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Kaeth View Post
    A few thousand people don't like it.

    Good design move, dev team. A vocal minority complains about "having" to do something in a game, so you break the entire system to compensate. Bravo.
    I don't believe they're responding to a vocal minority at all.

    I'm willing to bet, though I don't have any way to prove it, that they have actual statistics that show the exact opposite of what you've written. I'm betting their data shows that only a very small percentage of people are actually using the upgrade option. Anecdotally, I know very few people, outside of my core raider friends, who have bothered with the upgrade process. It seems meaningless for JP gear, seeing as there are a myriad of different ways to replace 463 gear with 476 or better gear including heroics and scenarios, LFR, and dailies for rep gear. By the time someone upgrades a bunch of 463 to 471, they could have had mostly 476 gear or better. If you're a raider, it seems like a chore rather than an optional part of the game.

    GC is right about the fact that this adds another layer of burden on everyone. As previously mentioned, we already have gemming, enchanting, and reforging to do per gear item. An upgrade process is overkill. GC has already tweeted that there will be more VP gear which also implies a shifting of the current tier of gear so the gearing path for alts should be fine.

    Upgrading felt like a band aid and the system itself a was a mess. I'm glad it'll be gone and hope it stays gone. That said, Bliz didn't do such a stellar job with the JP/VP currency values this time around and, hopefully, they can learn from their mistake and fix it with subsequent tiers.
  1. grexly75's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Zace View Post
    For those of you saying "upgrade your gear while you can" they already said the upgrades are being removed from gear once 5.2 hits so there's no point of rushing to upgrade your gear since it will be gone anyway (even from gear you already upgraded).
    You obviously did not read or understand what was written in that tweet.. https://twitter.com/Ghostcrawler/sta...21071555846144

    Greg Street @Ghostcrawler

    @perculia Upgraded gear will not lose its upgrades. Upgrading will likely return after 5.2, but we'll evaluate all the feedback and see.

    As you can see current gear that you have upgraded keeps it's upgrade status. It is that new gear acquired in 5.2 will not be able to be upgraded.

    Not sure where you got the idea of currently upgraded gear would lose it's upgraded status and you may want to post links next time.
  1. Freia's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Inahu View Post
    I did catch something a while back where they said they would give us plenty of notice if a season was ending. I haven't seen that, maybe I just missed it or something. To give you the benefit of the doubt, I tried googling heaps of combinations of "pvp season 12 ending/end date", etc. Didn't return any results. I even checked the current PTR patch notes to see if there was anything about season 13 starting. Nada. I didn't PvP during Cata, so maybe I've missed some things, but I do know that other content that has been datamined from new builds on the PTR (Heirloom rings besides the Kalu'ak Derby one) haven't always been included in the PTR, let alone made it to live.
    5.2 is when the new season is starting. New tier also brings a new season. They wouldn't be posting the pvp gear if there was not a new season. They will give notice but it will probably only be like 2 weeks.
  1. Idletime's Avatar
    I quite enjoyed the upgrade system. I upgraded an item whenever I got within cap of valor points. Through LFR, dailies, dungeons, and scenarios I was capping 2-3 characters per week with relative ease since mid-November. My priorities were weapons, trinkets, then everything else. Dominance Offensive has my best upgrades at this time so I'm unfortunately saving points for the belts and boots from them across these characters, and I don't think I'll make it in time for patch to upgrade those slots to 502.

    I haven't seen the ilvl offering for LFR 5.2, which all of my characters will easily qualify for immediately (provided it's 480-483 minimum), but I'm relatively certain LFR will be granted 489/496 drops simply because we've been following the +13 model with regular raid gear since Wrath.

    I'm not a hardcore raider anymore (I prefer to play on my own time schedule) but I still like pushing my characters as far as I can with what I have access to.

    I think the message right now for casuals is less ominous than people make it out to be. There's no new annual pass offering (wonder why? although I saw through that last year), linear progression is back, if you worked at it long enough in 5.0-5.1 you would be in in full BIS+6, and they are going to continue to gate certain gains only casual players would need behind reputation. PvP gear will never reach ilvl requirements for the next tier, too. If you unsub for a few months, you're going to start almost where you left off when you return. The real answer is Keep You Logged In. You know what? When I started playing back in Classic, this was the message up until T7. I don't understand the business model at this point however.

    They've long since destroyed the playerbase that was around in Classic and TBC (those people moved on to other games or other endeavors) who would relish such a system, today's players cannot be asked to do anything beyond current raid tier. Adding flavor to the game is looked at as nothing more than "required content" among the new hardcore group - who yesteryear would be nothing more than serious players. I do hope their decision to do this works out for the best given very few people today are like me who enjoy being given new things to do in the game, only to have a very vocal group of people come down with the "NOT FUN" hammer.
  1. Ponkie's Avatar
    Why don't they just keep the upgrade NPC but have the new tier items not be able to be upgraded. It's basically the same.

    And how are we supposed to spend our JP on 5.2?

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