MMO-Champion - Next New Model Preview ETA, WoD Flex Cap, Toybox, CC, Hotfixes, Connected Realms
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Upcoming Character Model Preview - Update
It looks like the next new character model preview is about two weeks out.



Warlords of Draenor Flex Cap
Ion Hazzikostas (Lead Encounter Designer) finally joined Twitter today, letting us know about a larger potential Flex cap in Warlords of Draenor.



Warlords of Draenor Toybox
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Here's the information I was able to gather. Keep in mind that the Toybox feature is still early in development. Some of the questions may not have an answer yet and functionality may be subject to change as development continues on the feature.

What happens to items that need to be equipped? Such as: Orb of Deception, Super Simian Sphere, Burgy Blackheart's Handsome Hat, Time-Lost Figurine
Currently, the idea is to have fun item effects be converted into something similar to a spell. You'll be able to activate the effect without equipping the item.

I have a disco ball and picnic basket loot card sitting beside me. Wonder if I should hold onto them.
You should hold onto your items.

This means that all of those archaeology toys will be included too?
Yes, fun items obtained through the Archeology profession will be included in the Toybox tab. But please continue hanging onto those items while details are still being worked out.

What about my Haunted Memento?... please!!!
We don't know how that item will interact with the Toybox tab yet as it has a number of special qualities (can be thrown, its effect is activated by simply having it in your inventory). The important thing is none of the items are being removed. If an item doesn't make it into the Toybox tab, the item will remain as it always has.

The net effect will still be more inventory space for you.

I have Sylvanas' Music Box sitting in the bank unused, i need it account wide.
Some items may be character specific if we find a need for it. Still, a vast majority of the items in the Toybox will be account-wide.

3. Please don't remove quest items like Archmage Vargoth's staff (can't link it for some reason)! I heard quest items won't be placed in your inventory anymore. Please make the exception for these types of items!
We'll be keeping an eye out for quest items that players have been holding onto for fun and won't convert it into a quest item so it wouldn't go away.

Been wanting to know: what about gear with fun effects, like Jade Raccoon? My main's inventory is full of this kind of stuff.
We haven't determined what will or won't be considered a toy and recommend that you don't vendor or delete anything just yet.

You should create a new post with all the items that can go in both the "Toy" and "Heirloom" tabs. That way players could discuss any items they believe should be added or removed from either tab.
Feasibility for the creation of such a list can be looked at later in the testing process once more information is available.

I have Sylvanas Music Box on two toons.... does that get condensed into one item with a shared cooldown between all my toons or can it be made to have two "charges" before setting the cooldown? Or even two separate "toy entries" in the new book or whatever it is?
We're still undecided on how the cooldowns will work at this time.

A final disclaimer. This feature is still early in development. Depending on how it works out once we're able to test it, some things may change. The goal of the Toybox is to free up inventory space. Items that don't make it into the Toybox because of technical or other reasons should still be left alone with no change.

Warlords of Draenor Crowd Control
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
I think most CC needs to be removed from the talent trees. CC should be what makes a spec unique. Like wyvern sting, howl of a terror, shock wave, etc. If they are going to put CC on the trees, then it should weighted against other cc abilities, not damage or utility buffs.

Of just keep it how it is now and just tone things down a tad.

Our current plans are to do a little of both. We do like CC in talent trees, particularly when they're put up against other CC's in the tier (as you mentioned). You still can only have one of the three, but you get to choose exactly which, and can tailor that choice to your comp, playstyle, raid encounter, etc. Choosing between a CC and a DPS cooldown doesn't always feel as meaningful, so part of our plans for talents in WoD include making those choices make more sense where we can.

Still, we think there's more needed than just shaking talent trees around a bit, so we're going through baseline CC's as well. Some will be left alone. Some will be nerfed. Some will be outright removed. Note that some CC breaks are likely to be nerfed as well in the process, as when there's less CC overall, the ability to remove whatever's left over becomes exponentially more powerful.

Please remember that the expansion is still very much in development, so anything could change at any time. But that's our current thinking.

Are you considering spell locks and interrupts as ccs?
Yes.

One other thing I just mentioned on Twitter that I'd like to bring up here as well -- we're also planning on having fewer DR categories (and thus, more shared DR's) in WoD. Again, still in development, anything can change, but that's what we're looking at.

How far are you toning down damage? Is it burst you're toning or is it sustained, or a mix?
Numbers are hard for us to discuss right now, really. Between the item squish, base health/resil changes, spell/ability scaling changes, and probably some other stuff that doesn't come to mind right now, it's kind of an apples to oranges comparison. Once we're further along in development, we'll take a look at where all of that puts us, and adjust accordingly.

Patch 5.4.2 Hotfixes: January 8
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Classes
  • Druid (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
    • Balance
      • Astral Communion is now immune to interrupts. The ability still cannot be cast while Silenced, this will be corrected in a future patch.
      • Moonkin Form now increases the Druid's armor by 100% (up from 60%).
  • Priest (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
    • Shadow
      • Shadowform now increases the Priest's armor by 100% (up from 60%).

Raids, Dungeons, and Scenarios
  • Dragon Soul
    • Resolved a situation where the Claw of Go'rath was causing players to fall underneath the world.

US Connected Realms Update 1/6
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
As previously announced, we’ve been working toward connecting realms to increase the number of players on low-population realms, and since then have completed several connections. As a part of our ongoing communication, we wanted to provide you with an update that contains a list of completed realm connections, currently planned connections, and any additional future plans in one convenient location.

*Please note this list does not encompass all potential future connections. Please check back for further updates.

We will be connecting the realms listed below on Thursday, January 16th during a scheduled maintenance beginning at 5 a.m. PST through approximately1:00 p.m. PST. Once maintenance is finished, these realm connections will be complete.

  • Antonidas and Uldum
  • Blade's Edge and Thunderhorn
  • Bonechewer and Aegwynn/Daggerspine/Gurubashi/Hakkar
  • Destromath and Azgalor/Azshara
  • Jaedenar and Agamaggan
  • Shu'halo and Eitrigg

We do not have a date for the following realm connections, but will update this post when we do.

  • Alleria and Khadgar
  • Altar of Storms and Anetheron/Magtheridon/Ysondre
  • Misha and Rexxar
  • Ner'zhul and Frostmane/Tortheldrin
  • The Underbog and Agamaggan/Jaedenar

*​Plans for these connections may change at any time, but we’ll provide additional updates on specific dates for future connections here as we can. Please note that as a part of the connection process realm times may change to match each other.

FAQ
Q. My realm needs connecting, why isn’t it listed?
A. The connections listed are the phases we’ve currently finalized and have planned connection dates or estimates available for. Additional connections are possible, but they just haven’t reached that stage yet. We’ll be updating the realm connection list as phases complete and new phases are planned.

Q. When will my realm be connected?
A. We'll update this thread with the latest information on currently planned phases.

Q. My realm has a lower population than those on the list, why isn’t mine being connected first?
A. Realm connections are based on a number of factors including population, faction balance, the realm’s physical location in the world compared to other realms it may be connected to, among others. It’s also worth noting that websites which attempt to track population, while helpful in many ways, are estimates based on public data which may not provide the clearest picture of actual population.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Connected Realms
If your realm has a low population overall it will be connected, as I said in the FAQ. Where possible, we took faction balance into consideration when choosing which realms to connect, with the aim of balancing things out a little better. However, overall EU PvP realms have more Horde players, and EU PvE realms have more Alliance, so achieving perfect balance won't be possible. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Connected Realms and Realm Forums
It's something we've talked about, and there are pros and cons to either way; not the least of which is we aren't finished connecting realms, or have any current solution to an elegant way to name a single forum with a likely-very-long-title-with-all-the-realm-names.

We'd be curious to hear people's thoughts. Considering these are still separate realms in some ways, but a single a realm in others, would you find a single forum helpful as opposed to separate forums? (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Classes
Please, in what way do hunters benefit from haste ? haste i gain 1FPS...
Steady, Cobra, Aimed, and Power Shots all cast faster, and the auto attacks of you and your pet are faster. (Source)
so 5% of my damage through CS, 50% of my pets damage for another 10% overall ? Rough numbers. Wont even go into Power Shot...
CS's benefit to you isn't primarily its damage; it's its focus generation. You're getting more Arcane Shots the more haste you have (Source)

damage-heal smart heals make me feel i can play dumb and provides less control. is this the new healing model come WoD?
No, the opposite, as we've said repeatedly. We strongly feel that smart heals are too prevalent, and will be toning them down. (Source)

Paladin (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Quick question. What if I cast beacon of light on someone else with duel BOL talent in WOD? Will the first gone or i may choose?
If you BoL when you already have 2 out, it'll remove it from the older existing one. Somewhat awkward; alternative is two buttons. (Source)

Question about the level 100 Paladin talent seal of faith, for ret it says reduce damage dealt by 30% is this intentional? if so do we have to risk dps for healing?
Yes, not a 'risk' though; it's an active choice. You trade away a large part of your DPS for a huge gain in healing. (Source)
Ah okay thanks for answering, quick question before I go, How huge is this gain in healing, enough to be a efficient off-healer?
Very much so. I've seen theorycrafters find it to be something in the ballpark of 40-50% of a true healer. (Source)

Shouldn't paladins with CS (and pre-5.4 Seal of Insight) have been given the same treatment?
No, that was not intended to be a primary gameplay style for raiding. (Source)

Priest (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
My primary concern in WoD is if Multi-DoTing will be the excuse for abysmal SPriest single target DPS again.
Most other dps classes can swap specs for different pros/cons like that. Considering ways for Shadow/Balance to specialize. (Source)
Like... will there be a "DoTless" shadow spec?
At BlizzCon, we showed a talent for Shadow that does just that. (Source)
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!
Perhaps a misunderstanding? Not sure what you're "NOOOO!!!"ing about. It's a talent choice. Just makes DoTs unused single-target. (Source)
As talent rather than baseline stance, it will either be optimal or ignored. If optimal, forces freq talent switches.
That's an extremely limiting point of view, and not accurate (or not bad) based on many of our other talent rows. (Source)
Taking a step back, that would work in a tier where the 2 alternative talents have no significant DPS impact, single or AE.
Why do you say that? As long as the whole row is balanced, it works fine, right? (Source)
140chars... B/c balancing 1-target only option that also offers a perf adv with 2 other alts (also w/perf) seems super difficult
Perhaps a misunderstanding of Clarity; it doesn't remove DoTs, you can still multidot. Just not used on your primary target. (Source)

Rogue (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Will Crimson Tempest be looked at again? Its a Trap for newer Rogue Players at the moment, even Sub Mastery only helps a little.
I think it's only a trap in terms of single-GCD burst. It's just not as useful as it could be. We're considering changes. (Source)
Good candidate for button bloat removal imo. Just keep fan of knives, make it cause bleeds for sub or something.
So in a sustained AoE situation, what would you spend combo points on, without Crimson Tempest? (Source)
Are sustained AoE situations common enough to need a special button for them?
I think it's safe to say, "Yes". While not every tool needs to be equal, we expect all DPS to have some tool for that job. (Source)

Free Character Migrations (FCM) 08/01
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
The following Free Character Migrations are scheduled to be available until 14 January, 2014. They are all open for both factions:

PvE Realms
Draenor
-> Magtheridon, Wildhammer, Kilrogg
Silvermoon -> Magtheridon, Wildhammer, Kilrogg

PvP Realms
Kazzak
-> The Maelstrom, Grim Batol, Tarren Mill*, Ravencrest*
Outland -> The Maelstrom, Grim Batol, Tarren Mill*, Ravencrest*
Ragnaros -> The Maelstrom, Grim Batol, Tarren Mill* Ravencrest*
Stormscale -> The Maelstrom, Grim Batol, Tarren Mill* Ravencrest*
Sylvanas -> The Maelstrom, Grim Batol, Tarren Mill* Ravencrest*
Twisting Nether -> The Maelstrom, Grim Batol, Tarren Mill* Ravencrest*, Frostmane*

*FCMs to Tarren Mill, Ravencrest, and Frostmane are unlikely to be available after 14 January, 2014.

If you wish to discuss an FCM for a specific realm, the dedicated discussion threads are linked above.

Please note that FCMs are opened based on realm population tracking and analysis, not by request. If you’re looking for a specific migration (from realm A to realm B), you should in most cases use the Character Transfer service. Although we will try to avoid doing so without giving notice in advance, these FCMs may be closed before the scheduled date.

Character Transfers (CT)
All realms follow the regular CT rules, found here:
http://eu.blizzard.com/support/artic...rticleId=20416

Guild Transfers
Although Free Guild Master Realm Transfers are not possible at this time, the Free Character Migration will allow you to retain your guild membership and reputation, provided that the guild master completes a Guild Master Realm Transfer first and the faction remains the same as that of the source realm.
This article was originally published in forum thread: Next New Model Preview ETA, WoD Flex Cap, Toybox, CC, Hotfixes, Connected Realms started by chaud View original post
Comments 29 Comments
  1. Taiknee's Avatar
    Those WoD CC changes sound good. I am very much looking forward to that!
  1. Theil's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Kektonic View Post
    Every time they announce realm merges I chuckle when 2 of the previous servers I played on, two of the biggest ghost towns ever, are never on the list.

    It's even funnier when you think back to when server transfers were first implemented and there was a line from Blizz saying that they would monitor transfers and server populations and cut them off if things got too out of control.

    Riiiiight.
    As they've said repeatedly, they aren't going in order of lowest population or for which servers need it most. Realms are being selected for technical reasons and the process is ongoing. Clearly that's true as new mergers are happening on a pretty frequent basis. I think that's pretty understandable.
  1. markdall's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Theil View Post
    As they've said repeatedly, they aren't going in order of lowest population or for which servers need it most. Realms are being selected for technical reasons and the process is ongoing. Clearly that's true as new mergers are happening on a pretty frequent basis. I think that's pretty understandable.
    Not only that, while I too have watched and sort of shook my head each time my old (super dead) server isn't mentioned... it was finally mentioned! So there's hope, it's just a slow process apparently. You'd think they'd have scripted it all out now. *Arnold voice*: I would.
  1. segoplout's Avatar
    Every time i see a thread on EU connected realms or anything, I get amazed. Drop all. Look closer, then nothing on Zenedar. A legendary realm which needs snookers if it is to survive. it's a mess. It's labelled as medium pop but in reality its about 100 horde guys running around wondering why they sub and on the other side there are about 6 alliance.
  1. Laylriana's Avatar
    I just hope that when they are nerfing cc that they leave freezing trap alone for pve.
  1. Exploitbat's Avatar
    Still hoping they won't turn female night elves to hookers like they did to Tyrande...
  1. Sensa's Avatar
    [QUOTE=How far are you toning down damage? Is it burst you're toning or is it sustained, or a mix?
    Numbers are hard for us to discuss right now, really. Between the item squish, base health/resil changes, spell/ability scaling changes, and probably some other stuff that doesn't come to mind right now, it's kind of an apples to oranges comparison. Once we're further along in development, we'll take a look at where all of that puts us, and adjust accordingly.[/QUOTE]

    That's a very scary statement…the odds of them getting class balance remotely right when WoD launches, when you consider all the variables they are adjusting plus the potential overhaul of racials, is slim to none.
  1. Spazzer's Avatar
    I would cry with joy if I saw they went to 20 and 40 man structure for Flex... but at the same time I would cry because there would be 40 mans again...

    ~Spazzer
  1. Tarfik's Avatar
    looking forward to the new models!

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