MMO-Champion - Battleground Roles, Loot Spec Menu, LFR Difficulty, Blue Tweets, HS Interview, Comic
Patch 1.0.8 Known Issues List

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Patch 5.3 - Battleground Roles
Patch 5.3 finally adds roles to queuing for random battlegrounds. Things don't appear to be working completely yet, as everyone is accepted as a healer, no matter what they queue as.



Patch 5.3 - Loot Specialization Menu
The new Loot Specialization menu is in, allowing you to choose what spec you want loot for when getting bonus rolls, Raid Finder gear, and Pandarian quest rewards.



Warcraft April Fools
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Based on all the interesting replies I've been receiving on Twitter, I just want to specify here that I was primarily referring to website content and the priorities of our Web and Community teams. These are the teams that tend to put the most focus on April Fools jokes on our websites. People are extrapolating a lot of strange conclusions out of what I said... or, I guess more accurately, what I didn't even say.

And, as I said in the first of those tweets listed on MMO-C, we DID work on ideas for this year's April 1, but they didn't really pan out. We decided we couldn't justify spending MORE time on it this year with everything else going on. This doesn't mean we had more time to kill in previous years, or that we'll never do gags on our website again. It was a matter of priorities and time investment.

It's awesome that people enjoy when we do fun stuff. We like fun too. I'm sure we can all continue to have fun together, even if we didn't fool people on the day everyone not only expects it, but apparently demands it.

Zarhym, I hope you remember that tweet the next time you're inclined to give the canned "Doing X doesn't take away resources from Y, we have independent teams" response we've been treated to for years. I'm glad you guys are finally admitting something we all knew and decried for many, many years now.
This is the problem with pulling things we say out of context and using them as blanket statements to justify why we didn't meet your expectations.

Here's an example:

Very rarely does website development interfere with game development. There's communication between the teams so that we have a shared vision, obviously, but each team has its own resources specific to their respective design focuses.

Here's a counter example:

The Web & Mobile team, unlike the WoW development team, is a shared-resource team. Not only does the scope of the projects they work on extend far beyond what most people are assuming in this thread, they support all Blizzard websites.

The point:

Context matters. We can say that developing April 1 jokes doesn't require pulling resources from game design, while it CAN ALSO be true that Blizzard's continued expansion in the web, mobile and social media spaces to support increasingly more games DOES put more strain on our Web & Mobile and Communications departments.

I've experienced it first-hand during my six years with Blizzard Community Development. The way I work with WoW's game designers hasn't changed all that much over the years (although we've evolved our relationship with them and try to be as efficient as possible when we ask for their time). That said, the scope of my job, as well as the functions of the Blizzard Communications department as a whole, have grown and changed quite dramatically.

Sometimes I'm still surprised by how difficult it is to maintain a rational public dialog about anything we're doing or saying. April 1 is what it is, and perhaps we'll have cool things to share on future occasions. But, the fact that this is even a part of the WoW discussion beyond 12:00 am April 2 seems like folly to me. I don't intend to spend anymore time on it.

New Raid Finder Wing Difficulty
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
I'm personally ok with it if I'm not able to roll over every fight the first day it's available on the LFR. I personally think a sense of progression can be had, even in a group of 25 strangers. There have been some hotfixes already for the fight in LFR, I'm not sure if it needs more, but I'm sure if the designers feel it does they will make them.

Personally I appreciate that some fights require more knowledge and coordination, and aren't surefire gimmies. The fight has been available for 1 day to most of the people attempting it. I'm not sure that's enough information to claim that it's too hard for LFR. My group last night wiped a good number of times and then got it down with about 15 people that did understand the mechanics and were able to pull it off. That felt good to overcome the challenge finally, even if I was one of the dead.

There were a group of people in my guild back in the day that just could not do the Naxxramas Safety Dance on Heigan no matter what. Ever. No matter where you go people will make mistakes, or lack the coordination to overcome some mechanics. Considering the fight was able to done by 15 people in my LFR group last night though, I feel like it's a surmountable challenge even if a large portion of the raid is laying there. And hey, I can get better and maybe won't die next time, right?

One thing to keep in mind was "how many stacks of determination" did you have before you were able to kill the boss. Was the increased dps/health/healing help in determining that only 15 people were needed to kill him?
Maybe? But that's what that mechanic is there for. It helps make up for low damage, or healing, or coordination, or understanding/ability to overcome a fight. The intent was to not make LFR completely different, but help give people boosters when they need them. It's still more efficient to not wipe, and so logically that's what people should still be striving to do.

No offense, but you're not really engaging the substance of his post, which is that the "maze" mechanic is incredibly difficult to distinguish. You have a dark floor with a dark purple overlay, with a dark purple fog over that overlay. I had to TURN DOWN my settings to distinguish the maze in normal.

The problem isn't the cones or the other mechanics. The problem is the maze portion of the fight which is difficult to see and distinguish. I think when you have a mechanic where you have to DECREASE your settings to be able to play. You ought to reconsider or fix those settings.

Quite right, most are not saying it's too hard as a mechanic, just that visual effect needs alteration to make it more... attemptable even. I don't think that's something we'd disagree with. The effect went through a number of changes on the PTR, including very late in the testing cycle to try to resolve some performance issues it was causing. It's certainly a doable fight, but I think it's safe to say we don't think it's perfect as-is.

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Classes
Mage (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
do you see mage bomb buff as a permanent change or just temporary solution until some new changes to mage class balance?
Ideally we'd shift DPS back to casted nukes, but we didn't want to force players to respec or create PvP burst risk via a hotfix. (Source)

Venruki said on his stream Flameglow was the most OP mage ability. Why did you give it to them in a supposed nerf patch?
Anything weaker and mages would just stick with Ice Barrier. Now it's a choice (and Ice Barrier still wins vs a lot of classes). (Source)

Priest (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
disc has nice dps and good absorption shield. what make holy priest different from disc and the other healers?
Holy's heals are bigger and has more AE tools. Divine Hymn still works in situations when you can't group for Barrier. (Source)
Holy offers nothing other than fun gameplay. We are not taken to raids, we are useless in 10s.
We're not seeing that. The number of Holy priests has jumped up a lot in 5.2 (though there are still more Disc). (Source)
Seems pretty close on Megaera: [cherrypick] 90-95 percentile even has Holy higher w/ lower Std. Dev.
Also trends don't change overnight. Someone used to playing Disc might not change unless Disc was dreadful for some fight. (Source)

It makes Chakra about the mechanics useful to situation, not the numbers. Becomes fun again.
So Sanctuary would say: Reduces the CD of your CoH spell by 2 sec, and transforms your HW: Chastise spell into HW: Sanctuary? (Source)
I feel it keeps core functionality, and incr flexibility, but how do you interpret such an implementation of Chakra?
We think new tools would be more fun than passive bonuses. (CoH CD is kinda a new tool.) (Source)

Could You pls tell us reason of removing divine hymn from discipline priests?
We wanted to differentiate Discipline and Holy more. (Source)

Holy Priests are rare imo. Just because Atonement works so well for this tier.
A ton of Disc in 5.0 so not everyone will switch ASAP. Also, Disc is even more attractive in 10s. Holy pop growing though. (Source)

Shaman (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Other than that do our mechanics not work well with the current content which is somewhat I do understand. 2/2
We want to make sure Resto does well in situations where HR and CH can be used in full. If we buff them, would likely be there. (Source)
Resto seems to be average even when HR/CH/HTT/Ascendance can be used to full effect - i.e Megaera, etc.
We agree. Megaera *should* be a good fight for Resto shaman since it lets them use abilities that they can't use on e.g. Tortos. (Source)

Warlock (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Any changes in the making for warlocks that you wouldnt mind sharing?
Nothing concrete, but we're not happy with the way Soulburn Soul Swap is working out. More of a fun concern than a balance one. (Source)
Are you happy with what a warlock brings compared to other caster counterparts? In arenas.
Generally, but we're concerned Affliction doesn't bring the dot pressure it could (and they don't need a dot buff in PvE). (Source)

Will the Dreadstead ever be made to match our green fire?
Hopefully. (Source)

If Blizzard is moving towards homogenizing all abilities/buffs then why do Warlocks still have a unique ability; Healthstones?
We only share mandatory ones. Stones are a nice to have, not a must bring. Bloodlust, brez are a must. (Source)

Will there ever be a Feat of Strength for beating Kanrethad?
Traditionally, we haven't liked doing achievements (or feats) that are only obtainable by one class. (Source)

- GoSac nerfed so that we get to deal with buggy pets that randomly despawn. Sweet deal. Fixing?
Warlocks are a pet class. That talent was never intended to let them not be a pet class. (Source)
Make pets viable and we'll stop bitching. Until then, make GoSac a dps equivalent. Don't make players pay for devs fail coding
Unless you rolled your warlock very recently, you signed up for a pet class. We will continually try to improve pets though. (Source)
for me the prob is pet's don't feel important. felhunter was buffed by affli dots for example. imp with destruction etc.
We have gone back and forth on whether specific pets should have strong spec synergies. Each design has pros and cons. (Source)

- Acknowledged, but missing the point. Nerf GoSac to stick us with bugs in order to min max? That's my issue, not the pets.
Imagine GoSac becomes a cooldown, not a way to have a petless spec. That is more in keeping with our design. (Source)

Warrior (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
so u buffed def stance back up to 25% it seems. Why?
We like the skill of stance swapping. Previous problem was dudes never left Def. With rage changes, we think that is less of a risk. (Source)
thing is this isn't a great solution for warriors. def stance = no damage cuz no rage = trained 24/7 = gg cata style.
That's kind of the point though. One stance won't solve every problem. (Source)

The removal of the Enraged text from Raging Blow is just a weird PTR tooltip issue, yes?
Correct. The only actual change in 5.3 for warriors so far is Vigilance resetting Taunt. (Source)

Character
Regarding the Loot Specialization in 5.3, will this be able to be switched per boss or per instance?
Per boss. (Source)

i loved the diff horde/ally armor sets from ToC personally.
Yeah that was cool. The tradeoff was all plate dudes looked alike. (Source)

I understand that it might be difficult to impossible with the technology at present, but I wanted to at least ask.
We don't know if it will happen in time for 5.3 but we do have an engineering task to make TG work with polearms. (Source)

Is there any plan in the future for your account wide achievement score to be displayed in guild? I would love for this chang
We would like to. The whole point was to let players not feel obligated to repeat achievements on alts. (Source)

For 5.3 could old pvp armor that's flagged as "Rogue, Druid" have Monk added to it for transmog purposes?
Seems like a reasonable request. (Source)

Hearthstone Interview
The Instance recently had a chance to interview the Hearthstone devs!

  • Nothing is set in stone yet, but the devs are looking at tying WoW and Hearthstone together with some kind of promotions.
  • Players that are playing other Blizzard games will be able to see that people are playing Hearthstone through Battle.net.
  • Classes will operate in a way that captures the important parts of the class from WoW, with similar spell effects to WoW and the older Warcraft games.
  • Limiting the deck to 30 cards, down from 60, was done to make it more accessible to work with a deck.
  • Asynchronous play may come in the future, closer to the tablet version release.
  • Other classes may be added in the future, but the devs are focusing on the original classes for release.
  • The game should be easy to pick up, even for people that have never played any card games or WoW. There is a good amount of strategic depth as well, so it should be interesting even for expert players.


Dark Legacy Comics #383
DLC #380 has been released.

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