MMO-Champion - Catching Up to 5.3, Battleground With the Blues, Blue Posts
Patch 5.3 PTR - Build 16911, PvP Gem Changes

Catching Up to 5.3
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
There’s a ton of content worth experiencing in Mists of Pandaria—but if you’re leveling alts or just looking to get to the highest gear levels to see the newest content, the “best” route is not always clear. We get a lot of questions on what to focus on, so hopefully this article can provide some helpful guidance.

Back in the Day
In the initial months after Mists of Pandaria launched, the primary method to gear up a new level 90 was to run Scenarios and Heroic dungeons, and then do daily quests (beginning with Golden Lotus and Klaxxi, and then progressing to Shado-Pan and August Celestials) to earn reputation to unlock the vendors that sold higher-level epics. Along the way, players would qualify for the Raid Finder version of Mogu’shan Vaults, and then eventually the Raid Finder versions of Heart of Fear and Terrace of Endless Spring, supplementing the gear they unlocked and purchased with Valor Points.

While all of that content, along with the original reputation vendors and associated progression, remains in the game, patch 5.2 introduced several new, more efficient ways to get a fresh level 90 caught up and ready to jump right into the Throne of Thunder raid.

Get to ‘da Island!
The core of the current gearing system revolves around the new Isle of Thunder, and the vastly accelerated rate at which Elder Charms of Good Fortune can be obtained on the Isle. Elder Charms are used for bonus rolls when defeating raid bosses from the expansion’s first set of raids—Mogu’shan Vaults, Heart of Fear, Terrace of Endless Spring—as well as Mists of Pandaria’s original world bosses, Sha of Anger and Galleon. By obtaining Elder Charms, defeating bosses, and using bonus rolls, you’ll receive more chances to acquire upgrades, helping you gear up at a faster pace.

The Isle of Thunder also offers other ways to acquire Elder Charms. By defeating rare-spawn enemies on the Isle of Thunder, looting a Trove of the Thunder King, or defeating common enemies, players can receive a Key to the Palace of Lei Shen (one per week, with a small chance at extras from the coffers awarded at the conclusion of daily quest arcs). Players can take the key to Taoshi in the Shado-Pan encampment located in the swamp at the center of the Isle for a chance to do a Treasure Room run. In these runs, players have 5 minutes to open as many chests as possible and make it as far as they can through a dangerous, trap-laden vault. These runs are not only a ton of fun, but can be extremely lucrative in providing gold and Elder Charms. Foregoing a race to the finish line and instead systematically opening every chest you can get your hands on will likely yield a significant number of Elder Charms—it’s not uncommon to emerge from a single run with over a dozen. Additional Elder Charms can be obtained by using Incantations that also drop from creatures on the Isle and taking them to the graveyard in the mogu ruins on the west side of the Isle.

In 5.2, we significantly increased drop rates in the Raid Finder versions of Mogu’shan Vaults, Heart of Fear, and Terrace of Endless Spring, so it’s quite possible to walk into the Raid Finder and have enough Elder Charms to use a bonus roll on every boss you kill (with greatly increased drop chances) for a tremendous loot yield. You can also run Raid Finder more than once per week if you have more Elder Charms. You won’t receive normal drops from the boss, but your bonus rolls will have a chance of rewarding an item.

Misc. Stuff We Couldn’t Think of a Title For
If you’re into PvP, recent changes have made PvE gear pretty decent in PvP, and vice-versa. Outside of sockets and set bonuses, you can get a bunch of Honor (or Justice Points, and covert them to Honor at the Justice Trade Good vendors in Orgrimmar and Stormwind) and buy Item Level (ilvl) 476 PvP gear to help fill in any gaps and help you get into the higher rungs of PvE content.

Like Sha of Anger, the world boss Galleon now respawns much more frequently. The world boss Nalak is also now accessible on the Isle of Thunder, and the Shado-Pan Assault vendor is selling a neckpiece for Valor Points with no additional reputation requirements. In addition, the Isle of Thunder factions sell an ilvl 476 belt for gold at Honored reputation, which makes doing their dailies pretty enticing.

What the Future Holds
In Patch 5.3: Escalation, you’ll head to the Barrens and participate in an uprising that will lead to the ultimate challenges in 5.4, and a variety of patch 5.3 content will award ilvl 476 to ilvl 489 items for participating in and completing quests. It’s important to note that the 5.3 world event will only be available for a limited time, as the story continues in 5.4. In addition, the XP required to level from 85 to 90 is being reduced by 33% in patch 5.3. If you’re looking to level and gear up alts, patch 5.3 may be a good time to do so with these additional options.

Between all of these sources, an adventurous player should be should be able to walk right into the Raid Finder Throne of Thunder within a week or two of hitting level 90, even without touching any of the mainland reputations.

Content ilvl Requirements
  • ilvl 440 required for Heroic dungeons
  • ilvl 460 required for Mogu’shan Vaults
  • ilvl 470 required for Heart of Fear and Terrace of Endless Spring
  • ilvl 480 required for Throne of Thunder

Gearing for Throne of Thunder
  • XP required to level from 85-90 reduced by 33% in patch 5.3
  • ilvl 440 required for Heroic dungeons. Quest rewards from Townlong Steppes as well as Dread Wastes will bring you up to 440. It may be worthwhile to begin these zones earlier in the leveling process
  • At 90 head to the Isle of Thunder and progress through the quests each day and hunt for a Key to the Palace of Lei Shen each week. The portal to the Isle can be found at the Shado-Pan Garrison in western Townlong Steppes
  • The Arena of Annihilation scenario has a mini-quest inside that rewards an ilvl 450 weapon
  • Key to the Palace of Lei Shen looted once per week from rare spawns, Trove of Thunder King chests, or by defeating common enemies on the Isle of Thunder
    • There’s a small chance for Throne of Thunder LFR gear to come from the chests after you’ve completed your run
    • Loot run provides Elder Charms of Good Fortune
    • Elder Charms provide bonus rolls when defeating bosses in Mogu’shan Vaults, Heart of Fear, Terrace of Endless Spring, as well as the 5.0 world bosses Sha of Anger and Galleon
    • You can run LFR more than once per week if you have more Elder Charms. You won’t receive normal drops from the boss but your bonus rolls still do have a chance of rewarding an item
  • With Elder Charms of Good Fortune acquired, and an average ilvl of 460, head into Mogu’shan Vaults, you can queue using the Raid Finder (default shortcut key: i)
  • Crafted PvP items (ilvl 458) can help get you over the hump into Heroic dungeons
  • Crafted ilvl 476 items (Gloves/Chest/Weapons/etc.) can help jumpstart you into LFR
  • 5.3 Battlefield Barrens quests will award ilvl 476 and 489 items
  • 476 belt is purchasable from the Isle of Thunder Kirin Tor Offensive (A) or Sunreaver Onslaught (H) for gold
  • 476 Epic boots available from a quest received by killing Sha of Anger (loot Claw of Anger)
  • 476 PvP items purchased with Honor can help fill in any gaps and raise your average ilvl with little negative effect to your overall ability in raids
  • Shado-Pan Assault ilvl 522 neck available at Neutral for 1250 Valor Points
  • Lesser Charms of Good Fortune can be exchanged at your faction’s shrine in the Vale of Eternal Blossoms for Mogu Runes of Fate. Mogu Runes provide bonus rolls for 5.2 bosses including those in the Throne of Thunder, and world bosses Oondasta and Nalak

Battlegrounds With The Blues! 5/03/13
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Greetings Champions!

Once again the song of battle calls we Blizzard employees forth to the fields of honor! Who will accept the challenge and test their might against ours!? (/rp)

Tomorrow (5/3/13) from 4pm-6pm PST we'll be logging onto the PTR realms and queuing for 5.3's new battleground Deepwind Gorge.

We'll be identified by the guilds [Blizzard Horde] & [Blizzard Alliance]. So come on to the PTRs, queue up for Deepwind Gorge, and be hungry for a fight.

Hope to see you there!

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Scenarios and Dungeons
Why is Blizzard pushing scenarios so much? Think of the amount of dungeons they could have made in this time.
Scenarios are far quicker to create than dungeons. They don't just rely on specific class balance among other things. So, the time it would have taken to create a single new dungeon is much greater than most realize. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Death Match Battleground
Battle grounds have always been missing an important part of world pvp.... PvP. Make it like a big arena but not so big that people can't hide. 10 to 15 players forced into all out pvp. First to so many kills or 10 minutes, whichever comes first, wins the round.

No need to even create an area for it. Just make a copy of Blackrock mountain in an instance.

What you're asking for is a straight Death Match type of Battleground. I'm not sure it would be compelling as you think. I'm a big fan of DM as well, at least in FPS', but for an MMO like World of Warcraft, I question how enjoyable it would be in the long run for people. I think for players who feel very comfortable with their abilities, straight head on PvP like that would be fun for them, but for others, I'm not sure it would have the same appeal.

That said, I'm not killing the discussion. I'm just interested in how you feel this would work or appeal to a wide enough audience for it to be worth creating.

I think Southshore/Tarren Mill speak to it being desired. But that's gone now.
People forget that Southshore/Tarren Mill occurred because there were no battlegrounds at the time. It was "the place to go" if you wanted mass amounts of faction vs. faction PvP. I remember, I was there. I also remember hoping a spell would go off in time.

As much as I'd love to believe everyone loves PvP, it's not true. That said though, I think World of Warcraft has managed to introduce PvP to more people who may have never tried it before. This is a good thing. Creating interesting PvP encounters is important for continuing to keep people interested in it though. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Spectral Guise Side Effect
Coming back to this one quickly; Spectral Guise removing a player from combat is not entirely a bug, but more of an unfortunate side-effect that's caused by the way the spell functions in order to accomplish particular tasks. We are fine that this perk is available through Spectral Guise and have no plans at this time to change the way the spell works.

We're aware that the tooltip is currently incorrect in its current state and are looking to update it in an upcoming patch, however this will not be until patch 5.4 at the soonest. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
This article was originally published in forum thread: Catching Up to 5.3, Battleground With the Blues, Blue Posts started by chaud View original post
Comments 47 Comments
  1. risingforce's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Soeroah View Post
    I'm a little disappointed in hearing that the 5.3 story is going to be time-limited. It makes sense, but it seems to run contrary to what they said about developing content that only gets 'played once' and then disappears, not to mention newer players missing out.
    Me too, it makes me sad too because my girlfriend may miss out on 5.3.

    The argument, I suppose, is that events are made precious by time-limitation... but still I'd prefer an option, or a hint from Blizzard, that they'd let players revisit these events via the Caverns of Time (for example).
  1. Pebrocks The Warlock's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by warcraftmew View Post
    battlegrounds with blues be funny if they faced a bot team and blizzard as normal do feck all about it lol
    Yeah because people would bot on the PTR.
  1. Dackzor's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by MarkHighwind View Post
    Too bad hardcore or even semi-hc guilds will not rcruit you unless you're fully decked to begin with... That's what got me out of WoW anyway, leave for a few months and your gear is useless without another couple months of time investment...
    Been part of a hardcore / semi-hc (depends where you draw the line, we usually kill the end boss on HC before a new tier starts. 4x 3 hour raids/week) guild for ages now.. we have taken in alot of low geared people, it isnt as hard as you think. They are usually ready for some progression fights after 2-3 weeks.
  1. Granyala's Avatar
    Too bad hardcore or even semi-hc guilds will not rcruit you unless you're fully decked to begin with... That's what got me out of WoW anyway, leave for a few months and your gear is useless without another couple months of time investment...
    BS. Gear can be acquired in alt runs. What's important is that you know how to play your class, pull adequate numbers for your gear and how not to die due to stupid stuff.
  1. Nerraw's Avatar
    I thought heroic dungeons required ilvl 435?
  1. Schprotznog's Avatar
    I don't think it's cool that MMO-Champion is removing all the Wowhead links from blue posts now. Blue links a Wowhead rare spawn guide? Replace it with a simple wowdb-link... :-/
  1. Schaapa's Avatar
    They do. They lowered some time ago. The rest is correct.
  1. lsmf5's Avatar
    Due to US WOW site needing a us sub, and I'm EU I'll post here. While this guide is very good, I applaud them on it, I have two major concerns.

    1. At least get your facts straight, hc dungeons require 435 not 440, it hasn't been 440 for over 5 months now, surely someone got the memo.
    2. Gear means very little in terms of performance unless you are skilled, i've seen plenty of people lesser geared outperforming those with better gear because the better geared was just lucky with rolls or got carried. Rather than just telling people to get gear for lfr and do hcs, why not also emphasise the importance of sites such as icy-veins and ask mr robot as well as other specialist sites for certain classes and specs, there is no point rushing people through content, if you are essentially forcing other player to have to pick up their game moreso for their ignorance.

    The reason so many players are not hit capped exp capped or geared correctly and playing poorly in dungeons and lfr etc, is Blizzard's fault, the community can only offer so much, but so many players will only listen to Blizzard's divine given word, that unless Blizzard recommends it they will just continue. Another welcome change (as I hear too many players complaining about the cost of reforging) is just remove the cost of reforging completely, while for richer players it does help get rid of some gold, for the new players who know very little about making gold, that is at least a small help.
  1. risingforce's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Schprotznog View Post
    I don't think it's cool that MMO-Champion is removing all the Wowhead links from blue posts now. Blue links a Wowhead rare spawn guide? Replace it with a simple wowdb-link... :-/
    Urh, yeah I really don't like wowdb, either, but I suppose MMO-Champion have to promote their own system. Every time I 'have to' visit a wowdb link I only do it so I can click the link to wowhead from wowdb... I'd imagine wowdb gets a lot of people making similar 'bounces', no doubt.
  1. Aesahaettr's Avatar
    I hate the Isle of Thunder on my low level priest. Running around mounted on my decently geared Warlock, I dont have to pay much attention to what mobs I pull because even if I get dismounted I'm fairly sure I can kill them.

    Try the same thing with my priest it's quite easy to die. I could go slower and clear the mobs before just running through, but that takes far too long for a daily grind: I can appreciate the argument that things shouldnt be too easy, but honestly, when it comes to the chore of dailies, and they are a chore, I want to get them over and done ASAP so I can go and do something fun, like play another game until the raid starts.

    I'm quite happy to run heroics, but I'm bored of them already. I know the argument that having new 5 mans would mean smaller raids, I'd actually be fine with that.
  1. lanerios's Avatar
    Seriously.. Wowdb links? When will Curse realise they cannot, and will not replace wowhead. It's a pathetic dream that will just never work.

    While Throne is fun, the whole "dailies in 1 part, so every phase the same damn dailies" gets boring fast
  1. Wayne25uk's Avatar
    I am seriously pissed off about 5.3 being limited,i mean talk about only catering for the fucking level 90s,jesus!!!

    I dont get much time to play WoW and i've missed so much due to these stupid arse events that serve a purpose then never get seen again,as somebody said earlier the newer players are gonna miss out on the fun just like i did with that troll and gnome event,all because my laptop was broke i never saw the light of day of it,not gonna bother playing anymore if i cant revisit all the stuff i've missed. Not paying a subscription fee to get content walk right past me without even trying it. Make it a scenario or some shit.
  1. Assumi's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by nekobaka View Post
    Its like players have completely blocked out the existence of PuG raiding.
    One the fly PUG raiding completely died on my server once they removed separate raid lockouts. Those runs were always headed by played raiders who were going for their other lockout their guild didn't normally run.

    Openraid, ect all require scheduling so they aren't relevant to the point you're trying to refute.

    ---------- Post added 2013-05-03 at 02:24 PM ----------

    What I find very amusing about this post is that they made valour gearing a shadow of what it used to be, and made it much slower. They stopped making mid expansion dungeons with high ilvl loot to catch up past old tiers and people kept saying it would just backfire into people using PvP gear. They lower the old season gear ilvl so it's lower than the current ToT requirement and what happens?

    They write an official guide that tells you to fill gaps by using PvP gear.
  1. Faithshield's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Assumi View Post
    One the fly PUG raiding completely died on my server once they removed separate raid lockouts. Those runs were always headed by played raiders who were going for their other lockout their guild didn't normally run.

    Openraid, ect all require scheduling so they aren't relevant to the point you're trying to refute.

    ---------- Post added 2013-05-03 at 02:24 PM ----------

    What I find very amusing about this post is that they made valour gearing a shadow of what it used to be, and made it much slower. They stopped making mid expansion dungeons with high ilvl loot to catch up past old tiers and people kept saying it would just backfire into people using PvP gear. They lower the old season gear ilvl so it's lower than the current ToT requirement and what happens?

    They write an official guide that tells you to fill gaps by using PvP gear.
    To be honest running easy dungeons for high ilevel items might be great and efficient for players, but my god is it boring to run the same dungeons throughout an entire expansion. Plus, in Cata half the raiding content was obsolete before the expansion even ended. Its just very bad design no matter how much you enjoy it.
  1. quras's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Rukh View Post
    Man, they're really shoving the upgrades down your throat these days...
    So right. Can't have you feeling disappointed about the game and grind. You might leave.
  1. nekobaka's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Assumi View Post
    One the fly PUG raiding completely died on my server once they removed separate raid lockouts. Those runs were always headed by played raiders who were going for their other lockout their guild didn't normally run.

    Openraid, ect all require scheduling so they aren't relevant to the point you're trying to refute.
    Yes a lot of the PuGs now revolve around scheduling using 3rd party methods. I left some context out in my post. I mean that PuG raiding had been around for years. There are still PuGs just not many left after the introduction of LFR on my server. PuG raiding was alive and kicking on my realm after the removal of separate raid lockouts. I was able to find a "newb" PuG for Firelands before the nerf for my two week old lvl 85. The big hit to PuG raiding on my realm happened when LFR hit. PuG raiding did exist that was accessible for those who did not want to play around a schedule. Even then players liked to ignore that fact because it makes it easier for their argument that casuals could not raid despite the existence of casuals raiding.
  1. Farabee's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Faithshield View Post
    To be honest running easy dungeons for high ilevel items might be great and efficient for players, but my god is it boring to run the same dungeons throughout an entire expansion. Plus, in Cata half the raiding content was obsolete before the expansion even ended. Its just very bad design no matter how much you enjoy it.
    The real problem is they haven't even bothered to add a single new 5-man since launch. They've put all their time and effort for small group play into Scenarios, which are possibly the worst time investment past running the first one per day in the game.

    I get that they're trying to force people to do the old content first ala BC, but holy hell is it annoying for alts. At least give us a single new dungeon that drops 476 gear. Having to use PVP gear to get into LFR is annoying and dealing with people who whine about it is even moreso. Crafted gear is not a solution at 600g per living steel bar and 250 per blood spirit.
  1. Glorious Leader's Avatar
    Here's what that blog should read:

    1) Run dungeons (with tabards and valor)
    2) Buy gear (from rep and from valor)

    Instead I have to print an excell spreadsheed and then sit in my chair with a lab coat and check off every little thing for an alt. Hell they are telling you to cheat the ilvl as much as possible even using pvp gear. This can't be the intended method going forward. They can't want gearing to be this convoluted and inelegant. I expect we will see some changes in the next expac.
  1. Ventris's Avatar
    the obvious solution of making intro rep gear cost JP the way intro epic pvp gear costs honor seems to have escaped them.

    removing the gating was a good step, letting august celestial, shado-pan, golden lotus, klaxxi epics go for JP would solve a lot of the issues. and I'm surprised it hasn't been done since thats how its been since wrath. reason being, and its not free epics, its to meet ilvl requirements. especially with ToT out. people would have an enticement to run 5 mans, people with excess JP would be able to aquire off spec stuff if need be.

    in the past there was always pieces that were BoE, like bracers etc, where you could use your stuff to gear alts. this whole "grinding" of things really does take a lot of the fun out of things. I haven't been in a 5man for ages since gearing alts you spend more time just trying to get rep and run LFR.

    I dunno, just the obvious easy fix seems to have escaped them.
  1. Glorious Leader's Avatar
    That brings up another point to. Should we consider any steps listed on that blog required? ergo forced? or is it all still optional?

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