MMO-Champion - Warlords of Draenor Dev Interview, Season 15 Begins, Season 14 Titles, Blue Tweets
Diablo III - Patch 2.0.1 Notes

Hearthside Chat - Art with Ben Thompson

Planned Alpha Wipe with Reward for Testing Real Money Purchase, Datamined Facts Behind the Heroes Free to Play Model

Warlords of Draenor Developer Interviews
There were a few developer interviews at the recent press events, so today we are taking a look at interviews with Ion Hazzikostas from Eurogamer and Brian Holinka from PlayersCut.

Eurogamer
  • The Level 90 boost is being sold to allow players that would have purchased multiple copies of WoW to get more Level 90 characters to do so in a more reasonable way.
  • The price point was decided upon to avoid devaluing the accomplishment of leveling a character to 90.
  • If Blizzard's goal was to sell as many boosts as possible, they would have set the price lower.
  • The price point wasn't selected to maximize profit, just to represent the amount of time that it takes to level to 90.

PlayersCut
  • The team has already started planning for the next two expansions.
  • Removing arena teams was an important part of increasing participation in arenas.
  • There is a lot of Garrison content that comes from having followers.
  • Patch 6.0 isn't the end of new content for Garrisons, as more content can be added as the expansion progresses.
  • The devs know that some kind of Garrison PvP sounds really cool, but there aren't any solid plans yet.
  • Ashran has a lot of players taking part in the battle, but they are spread out so that performance doesn't suffer. Ashran has a fortress for each faction, as well as capture points spread around the outside of the zone that are beneficial to hold. There will likely be a larger central battle with other battles going on around the outer part of the zone.
  • There aren't any plans for mobile content for WoW right now.
  • The technology for character model animation was finally at a point where models could updated for this expansion. Character models had also started to look outdated compared to some of the newer art assets in the game. The Pandaren were the test for new character models, and using lessons learned from them the team can update all of the other races.
  • There are so many older armor models that it isn't possible to go back and update them all. The team can use them as inspiration for new armor sets though.


PvP Season 15 Begins
Season 15 gear uses the same models as Season 14, but with different colors available to each faction.
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
With weapons at the ready and armor secured, it’s time to kick off PvP Season 15! The playing field is even once more, and this is your chance to prove that true grit and steely determination are what it takes to become a champion. So grab your most trusted companions and teach your enemies the true definition of fear!

Before you set foot in an Arena or on a Battleground, keep in mind we’ve made a few changes this season:

  • Conquest gear is now Item Level 550
  • The Dampening debuff will be applied in 2v2 matches 5 minutes after the start of an Arena match, and games will reach a draw at 20 minutes. Dampening decreases the effectiveness of healing spells by 1% every 10 seconds.
  • Base Resilience is now 77% (up from 72%).
  • Battle Fatigue is now 65% (up from 55%).

Good luck, champions—may the most bloodthirsty warriors win!

Season 14 Titles
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)
These titles and achievements were indeed given out erroneously, and we're in the process of applying some fixes that will remove them from characters below level 90.

One additional clarification, since we've seen this question come up elsewhere: These titles went out completely separately from the ladder, and thus did not affect the number of titles given to max-level players in any way. No one is missing titles due to this error.

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Classes
I'd like to point out Life Tap, which changes to a passive and maintains its bar position for destruction. I like that.
Seems like there has been much confusion about this tweet. It refers to how 3 active talents share 1 button without macros. (Celestalon)
What if it's a tier where one of the talents is passive? It will be an empty slot then?
Then we likely would not make the other two share a button like that. (Celestalon)
Couldn't talents be adjusted so that they can be made into one skill slot. Tiger's Lust is the only ability 1/2
No, we don't want to constrict our design space to 'only new buttons' or 'no new buttons' for a row. Mixtures are great sometimes (Celestalon)
So stuff like the warrior tier with Bladestorm etc
Yes; we could make Shockwave, Dragon Roar, and Bladestorm all share a button, so you don't have to swap after retalenting. (Celestalon)
Would it be Macro-able? Like "/cast Tier3Talent" or something?
Something like that. Mages already can do /cast Mage Bomb. (Celestalon)

Cool or Uncool: Instead of separate spells, procs like Pyro/MC change upgrade Fireball/Shadowbolt. #ButtonBloatProbz
We think we could do a lot more spell replacement. (holinka)

Personally, maintaining %dmg buffs is not interesting gameplay. There's a reason ISF got cut from Destro.
It depends on *how* you maintain it. If it just happens, it's just rampup. If your rotation molds around it, it can be cool/fun. (Celestalon)
could we rebalance lavalash to not require flame imbue? it doesnt feel like weapon imbues are optional at all
Weapon imbues are not intended to be optional. (Celestalon)
Not saying imbues should necces be passive, but if they are active they need to provide meaningful gameplay.
When you get to the point of complaining about the maintenance upkeep of a 1hr buff, that persists through death... (Celestalon)

What are your thoughts on passive immunities like dematerialize & subterfuge, Holinka? Are they staying for WoD?
Not committed to either staying. (holinka)

Art
Will the new char. models change Tauren male dual weilding's graphic to stop the left hand weapon from slanting to the left?
Yes; the latest in-progress version has the weapon turned around completely and clipping into your crotch. (I'd hope so.) (Dave_Maldo)

Character / Items
Why is there a need for catch up loot? Why are we encouraged to skip old tiers of content in every expac?
Many reasons. A big one is so that the playerbase is centralized; easier for guild recruiting, playing with friends, etc. (Celestalon)

Warlords of Draenor Stats
passive != fun! is math not fun? is altering your fantasy incarnation via the universal language useful?
We're not making stats more/less passive. Math is fun. I don't understand what your issue is. I suspect a misunderstanding. (Celestalon)
excuse my bad jokes. just that balancing stats, building different gear sets for different situations, etc, was a lot of fun. ->
And still will be. We're not getting rid of that, at all. (Celestalon)

Obv, I'm talking about Active Mitigation scaling. If Multistrike provides only dps/threat, it will be a garbage stat for tanks.
All secondary stats will be of defensive value for tanks. Some may be passive mitigation, some may be active mitigation. (Celestalon)

PvP
Can you please clarify the requirements for Hero of the Horde/Alliance?
let's say there's 1000 ppl above 1000, then top 5 get hero. If #5 doesn't have 50 games, then #6 gets hero. (holinka)

Have you guys considered random starting locations and horde v horde, af v af in random bgs? (maybe not all)
many players find the faction swap in RBGs quite jarring. Not something we want to expand on. (holinka)

I dont think you ever commented on what you think the prob is in AV/IOC. Thoughts?
IoC I blame mostly on a bug in 5.3 where Alliance could leave gates early and win most games. (holinka)
This damaged the hivemind view of Horde win chance in the bg and so sophisticated horde avoid it. (holinka)
AV has map problems, but Horde also avoid it, making the situation even worse. (holinka)
Some might think map design is only problem but even on mirrored maps, one faction fares better. (holinka)
Much obliged; very relieved to hear the AV map is suspect. I've said this for awhile. Thanks!
Woah, easy there. I said it has problems, but I'm not sure they are HUGE problems. (holinka)
Not to be rude but if you know AV has problems, why has nothing been done in 8+ years?
AV has gone through a lot of change in 8 years (holinka)

Final win to loss ratio 4 ally in ioc: 100 wins, 2 losses. How do devs look at those stats and call them fair-balanced?
We've been pretty clear on saying there's a problem but it's more complicated to fix than some players think. (holinka)

Heroes of the Storm - Illidan
Illidan is just one of the WoW characters that appear in Heroes of the Storm! (He also comes with a normal skin that we looked at recently)

This article was originally published in forum thread: Warlords of Draenor Dev Interview, Season 15 Begins, Season 14 Titles, Blue Tweets started by chaud View original post
Comments 101 Comments
  1. Terminal Lance's Avatar
    How is buying a fresh 90 char "Pay to Win"? Go play a fresh 90 with iLv483 gear and see how much you contribute to a raid/bg.
  1. arcaneshot's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Evisiling View Post
    Then they should only make the 90 boost available to people that own all the expansions including WoD and which the account already holds a level 90
    I think you probably forgot the fact that you have to buy MoP to get that Lv.90 in the first place.
  1. ace94's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by zombiekiller2223 View Post
    because levelling sucks and it takes forever and I never want to do it again after 5 ults and I want all classes so eventually I will buy the 90s
    You suck. Don't say it as if everyone hates it.
  1. Terminal Lance's Avatar
    I remember when race and faction change were announced and the same "P2W" crap was tossed around. I swear, crybaby whiners everywhere.
    THIS IS WHY ALIENS WON'T VISIT US
  1. Amnix's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Keosen View Post
    Do you understand how much time consuming 1-100 will be?
    Stop with the P2W bullshit, it's just a very expensive shortcut for someone who got money and not enough time, being max level doesn't wins you anything if you are incapable of end gaming PvP or PvE.
    In the end I agree with not being P2W. But leveling should still be part of your character's journey. I learned so much from my first time leveling, it took me almost two months to go from 1-80, and I don't regret 1 minute of this time I spent with my character getting stronger and stronger, and meeting people across the way. I made good friends that helped me while the Alliance was ganking lowbies in Eastern Plaguelands.

    All the knowledge I acquired the first time I leveled my Troll Mage, helped me on leveling my second toon, and my third, and my fourth, and so on.
  1. papajohn4's Avatar
    The Level 90 boost is being sold to allow players that would have purchased multiple copies of WoW to get more Level 90 characters to do so in a more reasonable way
    can they just stop using this retarded argument? It is insulting at least. They could easily flag the boosted character unable for transfer. Sell whatever you want, it is your game, your right, just stop insulting our intelligence with retarded arguments for 8 years old kids

    Quote Originally Posted by Keosen View Post
    Do you understand how much time consuming 1-100 will be?
    Stop with the P2W bullshit, it's just a very expensive shortcut for someone who got money and not enough time, being max level doesn't wins you anything if you are incapable of end gaming PvP or PvE.
    This is another "stupid" argument that most f2p games use(now sub games too). What about people who got the money plus lot of free time? Who stops them to use their money in addition to their abundant free time? Shops are not for the people who don't have time and want to "catch up" with those that have. Shops are for everyone.

    Again, I am not saying shops are bad or good. It is what it is. I just got bored of all the excuses and arguments companies give to justify their shops. It is just pure capitalism and is fine.
  1. rewn's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Evisiling View Post
    Then they should only make the 90 boost available to people that own all the expansions including WoD and which the account already holds a level 90
    This is where the price also partly comes from, as all the expansions up to Cataclysm are now part of the "Battlechest" meaning you would need to buy the chest, mists and then Warlords which altogether would probably cost about $60-$80. Doing that would have changed nothing.

    Quote Originally Posted by papajohn4 View Post
    can they just stop using this retarded argument? It is insulting at least. They could easily flag the boosted character unable for transfer. Sell whatever you want, it is your game, your right, just stop insulting our intelligence with retarded arguments for 8 years old kids.
    And what about the people who came back to the game and legitimately used the boost to just catch up? Or the people who made a new account for coming back then later regained control of their old account? It would screw over so many people to flag like that, it's even more insulting of you to suggest that.

    As for the second part, how is that a bullshit excuse? Once Warlords launches, 1-90 levelling will just be another tedious task that quite frankly is an outdated mechanic from another era. These days a large portion of players just want to dive right into a game without having to spend hours upon hours "levelling" just to do what they want to do. Offering people the opportunity to skip 90% of it at a cost is a fine service. If you can't afford it or think it's a waste of money, well it's not really hurting you now, is it?
  1. Keosen's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by papajohn4 View Post
    Again, I am not saying shops are bad or good. It is what it is. I just got bored of all the excuses and arguments companies give to justify their shops. It is just pure capitalism and is fine.
    Really?Why they don't make boost costs 10 dollars then?
    I can assure you than the sales would be much more than the x6 needed to compensate the 50$ loss.
  1. papajohn4's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by rewn View Post
    And what about the people who came back to the game and legitimately used the boost to just catch up? Or the people who made a new account for coming back then later regained control of their old account? It would screw over so many people to flag like that, it's even more insulting of you to suggest that.
    What about them? Those who come back will get the level 90 boost. Those that will regain their account and chose to play that account instead they will also get a level 90 (since they will buy the expansion). They will just not be able to transfer the level 90 of the first account to the other account. What you don't understand? People will get one 90 to their account they will chose to play, they will just be unable to transfer a second one from another account. What people they will screw up? People with multiply accounts that suddenly decide they want to play just one account with all their 90s? Seriously? They can still transfer the characters they normally played, they just cannot transfer the 1 character who took the boost.

    Quote Originally Posted by Keosen View Post
    Really?Why they don't make boost costs 10 dollars then?
    I can assure you than the sales would be much more than the x6 needed to compensate the 50$ loss.
    This is just a marketing decision. If the boost was 10 dollar then no one would level a char, the world would be empty and then maybe lose lot of subs from people who like leveling chars or new players. I am not in their marketing team to know why they chose that price, but sure they did that for the overall money they can get from their game.
  1. ComicRC's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Keosen View Post
    Really?Why they don't make boost costs 10 dollars then?
    I can assure you than the sales would be much more than the x6 needed to compensate the 50$ loss.
    This so much.

    IMO: The boost will do good and hopefully lower people from being angry/drama when leveling, since there's a way to skip that. I hope low-leveling will be better with this feature
  1. Nozuka's Avatar
    60$ is actually cheap if i compare it to the money i would make at work in the same amount of time.
  1. Dairios's Avatar
    5 90's, several 85 and ups, I still need a druid though, but I can't be arsed to level.. again. So yeah! One boost for me will make me a happy person. It's not like I'm missing out on content or something, I've seen it so bloody much I lost my desire to redo it. I dunno about others but I hit roadblocks in Hellfire Peninsula (RAAAGH! BOARS!) and Borean Tundra. I don't mind hitting up Vashj'ir though! Something about that zone is nice.
  1. Quilzar's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Vovohard View Post
    In the end I agree with not being P2W. But leveling should still be part of your character's journey. I learned so much from my first time leveling, it took me almost two months to go from 1-80, and I don't regret 1 minute of this time I spent with my character getting stronger and stronger, and meeting people across the way. I made good friends that helped me while the Alliance was ganking lowbies in Eastern Plaguelands.

    All the knowledge I acquired the first time I leveled my Troll Mage, helped me on leveling my second toon, and my third, and my fourth, and so on.
    What part do you not understand?

    Some people like leveling.

    Some do not.

    Why is that so hard to understand?

    Some people want to get to end game and have fun with their friends there.

    It is a CHOICE, no one is forcing anyone to do anything.

    It is an OPTION.
  1. zeuseason's Avatar
    The Level 90 boost is being sold to allow players that would have purchased multiple copies of WoW to get more Level 90 characters to do so in a more reasonable way.
    The $60 price point was decided upon to avoid devaluing the accomplishment of leveling a character to 90.
    If Blizzard's goal was to sell as many boosts as possible, they would have set the price lower.
    The $60 price point wasn't selected to maximize profit, just to represent the amount of time that it takes to level to 90.
    This is none of the biggest piles of pigeon dung I've read in a long time. This is a pure money grab and devaluates everyone's characters that are 90 already.
  1. Sinister Knight's Avatar
    The $60 price point wasn't selected to maximize profit, just to represent the amount of time that it takes to level to 90.

    I call bullshit. They're saying that the time it takes to level to 90 is worth more than an entire xpac. Not a chance in hell. If I looked at the amount of time I spent leveling my druid from 1 to 90 after taking a break from WoW and coming back around 5.2, and the time I spent playing after I hit 90 so far in MoP, the difference would be ridiculous. Time spent leveling (at worst 5-6 days of actual playtime), with heirlooms, xp elixirs, hell friends running you through dungeons, is a drop in the bucket, and in my oh so humble opinion, worth maybe $10, compared to what buying an expansion buys you: multiple raids, months of content, and any other time consumer you can think of. I don't know who they're trying to kid by saying it isn't for the profit.
  1. Trengor's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by papajohn4 View Post
    can they just stop using this retarded argument? It is insulting at least. They could easily flag the boosted character unable for transfer. Sell whatever you want, it is your game, your right, just stop insulting our intelligence with retarded arguments for 8 years old kids
    What is so retarded or insulting about this? It's a perfectly good argument. The thing thay want to avoid is not a ton of people transfering characters. They want to avoid having people buying multiple accounts to get the boost. Restricting the transfer service for boosted characters wouldn't really solve anything as there is no doubt in my mind that the people who would buy a new account and expansions to get the boost would just play their new 90s on the separate accounts instead. The only difference between that and offering the boost in the store would be that these people woudn't have to switch accounts all the time.
  1. DrakeWurrum's Avatar
    They buy multiple copies of WoW so that they can multi-box 5-man arena teams entirely controlled by one player, not so they can have more level 90s. =\
  1. Toiran's Avatar
    I totally agree and believe them about $60 not being maxed for profit.

    Convert to Raid's latest episode touches exactly on a great point for this, for a lot of people and somewhat mentally, $100 is a cut off point, it's "too much" for the general person, so, buying 2x90's would go over this cut off point, but if they had put the price at say, $30, it's immensely more likely that people would use it multiple times, they would buy 3x90's and still be under the mental barrier of $100, and Blizzard would of made $90 instead of $60.

    It really is no where close to being maximised for pure profit, it will make them a nice little profit, but it's not tailored for mass consumption by the general gamer.

    Will I buy one? I don't know, depends if they screw the UK and EU over with it being £60 vs $60 and crap like that, I also enjoy levelling, and would rather be cheap and RaF or something, but that's me, if another guy wants to buy an account full of 90's, go for it.
  1. VanishO2's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by rewn View Post
    This is where the price also partly comes from, as all the expansions up to Cataclysm are now part of the "Battlechest" meaning you would need to buy the chest, mists and then Warlords which altogether would probably cost about $60-$80. Doing that would have changed nothing.



    And what about the people who came back to the game and legitimately used the boost to just catch up? Or the people who made a new account for coming back then later regained control of their old account? It would screw over so many people to flag like that, it's even more insulting of you to suggest that.

    As for the second part, how is that a bullshit excuse? Once Warlords launches, 1-90 levelling will just be another tedious task that quite frankly is an outdated mechanic from another era. These days a large portion of players just want to dive right into a game without having to spend hours upon hours "levelling" just to do what they want to do. Offering people the opportunity to skip 90% of it at a cost is a fine service. If you can't afford it or think it's a waste of money, well it's not really hurting you now, is it?
    That's why there are plenty of "arcade" games. Ppl forgot wich kind of game WoW is exactly... it's not an outdated mechanic from another era because WoW mmorpgs didn't evolve to arcade/fps games. They're distinct types of game.

    Giving the excuse that "it's for those who can't play" is stupid. With this argument, there is no reason at all to not sell gear for example. I don't have time to play, just give me an expensive shortcut to grab the top gear so I can dive right into the faceroll in pve/pvp for a few minutes.

    Actually, why someone who pays a sub and go trought the "tedious and outdated mechanic from another era" dings 90 without a decent ilvl while someone who pays go right to 480+? It doesn't matter that you have timeless tokens (but not for 2 trinkets and weapons) if you're getting your 1st 90. Even if you alread have one 90 that isn't roflstomped by the mobs at the isle, not necessarily you do have the correct token to use.

    In a sense, it's actually a small P2W since you're making the other guy go trough all the leveling + the gearing to even get the 480+ ilvl that someone who payed for the boost got. The insta 90 guy (if you consider him a new player) doesn't know how to play at all, why put him right into ToT LFR and harder places like isle instead of doing normal scenarios, dungeons, heroics, old (and now easier) maps... the boost should give the questing ilvl you would have after dinging 90 at dread wastes.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Quilzar View Post
    What part do you not understand?

    Some people like leveling.

    Some do not.

    Why is that so hard to understand?

    Some people want to get to end game and have fun with their friends there.

    It is a CHOICE, no one is forcing anyone to do anything.

    It is an OPTION.
    Guess it's hard because it's part of this kind of game genre.

    One can understand someone who alread have a few 90s not wanting to level AGAIN. But it's kinda hard to understand why a arcade player would want all the other genres of game to become arcade games and not accepting that others don't understand it.

    And they actually screwed the boost service when they decided that the character would also skip part of the post-90 stuff, giving 480+ gear instead of the usual ilvl you finish the leveling. You're actually paying for some advantage over someone who just "pays the sub" and level it to 90 and will have to do dungeons, craft gear, get stomped in timeless isle looking for tokens (but not weapons and a 2nd trinket), etc.

    If it's just for the "noble goal of joining your friends" at 90, they can't help you trough this small "tedious and outdated mechanic of gearing at max level" instead of screwing those who do not/can't pay for the character/gear boost. Everyone would love to finish leveling to 90 (without the character/gear boost) and receive a nice set of 480+ gear in my mail (weapon included) so I could skip dungeons, farming for the correct tokens, etc.

    And yes, altough it doesn't look like, since boosting players will have to go trough 10 levels after WoD, this advantage will increase a little since you'll get there with better gear than someone who is leveling the normal way (if they don't do things right, you could even be locked out of LFG until reaching the minimum ilvl for the leveling dungeons, be it trough questing rewards or wasting gold with adventure gear from vendors a few quest hubs later into the map). Not to mention that they'll probably upgrade the service to 100 + higher lvl gear after sometime into WoD...
  1. Tarkol's Avatar
    Wond if they will add more stuff to the black market AH for WoD

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