Calculators Updated
All of the calculators have been updated with the changes from today's build.



New Models
Lots of new models were added in the latest alpha build!


















1/13 Alpha Build Design Notes
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
There’s a new Alpha build today, which includes a number of new additions and changes. We’d like to provide some additional context and info, and also focus discussion on the topics that will provide the most useful feedback at the moment.

  • Tank and Healer Abilities and Cooldowns - Tanks and Healers will notice significant changes to the tuning on many of their defensive abilities. These may appear to be “nerfs” at first glance, but are actually part of a widespread adjustment to improve overall tank (and tank healer) gameplay, that includes reducing the strength/frequency of defensive cooldowns, and adjusting creature tuning to compensate. We’ve made a separate thread to give full context about these changes here: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/20420493025
  • New Logging Feature - The Advanced Combat Log now includes additional data that will be of use to developers and users of data analysis sites and tools. We’ve made a separate thread to provide the data structure for the new COMBATANT_INFO log event here: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/20419432775
  • New Specializations Unlocked – There are 7 new specializations ready for testing! Several additional specializations have been unlocked for testing. We’d love any and all feedback about their gameplay, artifact quest lines, abilities, etc.
    • Vengeance Demon Hunter – NOTE: Vengeance abilities, talents, and artifact traits are still preliminary and are being heavily iterated on.
    • Guardian Druid
    • Restoration Druid
    • Marksmanship Hunter
    • Discipline Priest
    • Enhancement Shaman
    • Elemental Shaman
  • Honorable Medallion – This build includes our solution for the “CC break trinket” for low level classes. Upon entering a battleground or arena for the first time, players will learn the “Honorable Medallion” (temp name) spell. This spell removes all movement impairing effects and all effects which cause loss of control of your character while in PvP combat and has a 3 minute cooldown. Players can learn this spell at any level and it resides in the General section of your spell book. The first row of PvP talents then modifies the Honorable Medallion. This will provide the “CC break trinket” mechanic for all levels of PvP player. Feedback on this solution would be appreciated!
  • Talent Design Status - We’ve reached a ‘first draft’ level of design for talents for all specializations. There are some that we still have outstanding plans to revise or replace, but the vast majority are ready for feedback. Tuning has not been done, so you’ll have to imagine that numbers are adjusted such that talents are balanced, but we’d love to hear feedback about what talents you like or dislike. Especially useful is feedback on particular talent rows, and whether they feel like interesting choices or not (again, assuming numbers will be balanced).
  • Artifact Trait Design Status - More artifacts are available, and you’ll be able to unlock further traits on existing artifacts. At this time, feedback is welcome on artifact traits, but we still have much work to do on them, and have many revisions planned. Expect significant change to many of the artifact traits in the future.

Thanks, and we look forward to your feedback!

Tank & Healer Ability Tuning
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
In the latest Legion Alpha build, tanks and healers will notice significant changes to the tuning on many of their defensive abilities. These may appear to be “nerfs” at first glance, but are actually part of a widespread adjustment to improve overall tank (and tank healer) gameplay, that includes reducing the strength/frequency of defensive cooldowns, and adjusting creature tuning to compensate.

Over the course of Warlords of Draenor, tanks have been mostly self-sufficient, providing the vast majority of their own survival, with only minor direct assistance required from healers. Encounter design has unfortunately reinforced this, focusing tank damage into more and more bursty moments in an attempt to challenge tanks. This has made long-cooldown defensive ability usage more and more important, while also further trivializing direct healing requirements.

For Legion, we want to return the overall tank gameplay to a more stable environment. In that, we have laid out some specific goals that we aim to hit:

  • Tanks will require more direct healing. This will also improve on healer gameplay, as it’s more engaging when there’s a mixture of the types of healing that need to be used on any single encounter.
  • Active Mitigation abilities for tanks (such as Shield Block or Death Strike) should feel rewarding, allowing an experienced tank to meaningfully reduce damage taken.
  • Healers should care about the time and mana required to heal tanks, so that taking less damage as a tank is considered valuable.
  • Tanks and healers’ long-cooldown defensive abilities (such as Barkskin or Shield Wall) should feel like a valuable resource. These abilities should be strong, but not necessarily available for every danger during a specific encounter.
  • Tanks should have much more survivability than a non-tank. However, they don’t necessarily need to be extremely more sturdy. If the difference in ‘tankiness’ between tanks and non-tanks becomes too much of a gap, we then risk having situations such that if any one add gets loose, it’s likely to instantly kill any poor healer or damage dealer they hit–as the damage that these creatures deal would need to be exponentially higher to offset the sturdiness of the tank. This also brings a risk that tanks would opt to ignore enemy abilities that are designed to be dangerous to non-tanks, just taking those relatively minor blows rather than trying to avoid them as intended.
  • In raid encounters, tanks should spend more time tanking, and less time waiting for their turn to tank.
  • Tanks should be able to handle solo content quite effectively. They need to do less damage than dedicated damage dealers, but that difference can be moderate. It doesn’t have to be a massive difference.

Looking at these goals, we’ve made the following changes for tanking in Legion. We hope that these explanations will help you understand the bigger picture, in that these should be viewed as an overall improvement to the style of tank gameplay, rather than nerfs.

  • In order to ensure that tanks require direct healing from healers, we’re increasing the amount of damage that makes it past a tank’s mitigation. This will include reducing or removing passive defensive abilities, along with the below changes.
  • We’re toning down how frequently you’re able to use Active Mitigation abilities. This change will generally affect the length of their cooldowns, and not necessarily the strength of the ability. We believe these abilities are important to tank survival; but, when the uptime on these abilities gets too high, skill in knowing when to use them strategically matters less.
  • There are many long-cooldown defensive abilities that will be able to be used less frequently, and, in some cases, these abilities may be weaker. Many of these abilities are currently either too numerous or usable too frequently, resulting in a strong cooldown for almost every threatening moment of every encounter.
  • Encounter design will be adjusted to account for these changes. Overwhelming burst damage will be toned down, in favor of more steady and consistent damage on tanks.
  • The damage of creatures that are intended to be tanked in group content will be reduced overall, in order to ensure that tanks can still perform their role just as well as before.
  • Damage output by tanks will be increased, and their scaling with gear will be improved. This is being done so that tanks can stay in-line with damage dealers as a group gears up together.

Please note that many of these changes are preliminary, and we’ll be tweaking our changes based on testing and feedback. We’ll continue making adjustments as the Alpha moves along, until classes are in a more balanced state, and we look forward to hearing your thoughts throughout this process.

For more info on the latest Legion Alpha changes, see our summary thread: (Will edit in a moment!)

New Logging Feature: COMBATANT_INFO
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Today’s Alpha build includes a new logging feature when Advanced Combat Log is turned on. Whenever an ENCOUNTER_START event occurs, a new “COMBATANT_INFO” log line will also be printed for each player in the instance. The current data structure for COMBATANT_INFO is as follows, but is subject to change based on feedback and technical needs:

COMBATANT_INFO,playerGUID,Strength,Agility,Stamina,Intelligence,Dodge,Parry,Block,CritMele e,CritRanged,CritSpell,Speed,Lifesteal,HasteMelee,HasteRanged,HasteSpell,Avoidance,Mastery ,VersatilityDamageDone,VersatilityHealingDone,VersatilityDamageTaken,CurrentSpecID,(Class Talent 1, ...),(PvP Talent 1, ...),[Artifact Trait ID 1, Trait Effective Level 1, ...],[(Equipped Item ID 1,Equipped Item iLvL 1,(Permanent Enchant ID, Temp Enchant ID, On Use Spell Enchant ID),(Gem ID 1, Gem iLvL 1, ...)) ...],[Interesting Aura Caster GUID 1, Interesting Aura Spell ID 1, ...]

Some clarifications about a few of those elements:
  • Stats – Those are the current stat values at the time of the log line. Secondary stats are in terms of the Rating amount, not a %.
  • Talents – A list of the selected talents. Today’s build will print this ID as a TalentID, a record type that is not dataminable. This will be fixed in a future build to be the SpellID of the talent.
  • Artifact Traits – This will be a list of the selected traits for the character’s current specialization’s artifact (even if it’s not equipped). The Artifact Trait ID is an ID to a new record type to 7.0, which should be dataminable already. Trait Effective Level is the number of points placed in that talent. Note that some Relics will allow this to go beyond the max.
  • Equipment – This is a list of all equipped gear on the character. The first ID is the standard Item ID of the item, followed by its ilvl. After that is a list of enchants on the item, one of each of the 3 possible enchantment types (using the ItemEnchantment ID).
  • Interesting Auras – This is a list of interesting auras (buffs/debuffs) that we have manually flagged to be included in this log line. We’ll welcome feedback about what should be included here but currently plan for set bonuses, well fed, flasks, combat potions, and Vantus runes. Nothing has been flagged for this yet, so you won’t see anything here in the current build.

The easiest way to test this is likely via dungeon bosses. Give it a try, and let us know how it works for you, whether there’s any key information that you think is missing, what other interesting auras you’d like to see, etc. There are certainly technical limitations involved here, so we may not be able to fill every request, but we’ll do what we can! Thanks!

The Legion Alpha Test Is Back
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Our gnomish engineers have returned from their adorable little Winter Veil vacation to bring the Legion alpha test back online—and they’ve made a few updates in the process!

In addition to all of the content that was previously included in the alpha, testers can now explore the new Val’Sharah zone and delve into the new Darkheart Thicket dungeon. The Shaman Order Hall is also now available, and the new Demon Hunter Vengeance (tank) spec is ready for testing. The raid boss Ursoc has also made an appearance . . . and he can bearly wait to meet you. Character copy is currently disabled, but testers can create high-level characters using templates we’ve provided.

As a reminder, there’s no NDA (non-disclosure agreement) for the Legion alpha test, so participants are free to stream the game and share screenshots or movies. Please keep in mind that Legion is still in development—we’ll be making changes as we continue to prepare for the upcoming beta test, and what you’ll see during the alpha test is not necessarily representative of the final game.

Players selected to participate in the alpha test will receive an email invitation directing them to download and install the alpha client directly through Battle.net desktop app. As always, please be aware of phishing attempts—if you’re unsure whether your invitation is legitimate, please log in to Battle.net to verify whether you can install and play the Legion alpha.

Getting Started
1.If you’ve been selected to participate in the Legion alpha, your Battle.net account will already be flagged for access.
2.Make sure your graphics drivers are up to date.
3.Run the Battle.net desktop app—it may need to update itself if you haven’t run it recently. If you don’t have it installed, get started here.
4.Once Battle.net is installed and updated, select World of Warcraft from the list of games on the left.
5.In the Region/Account drop-down menu above the Play button, choose Alpha: Legion (listed under In Development), then click Install.
6.Allow installation to complete, and click Play.
Once you’ve launched the game, use the Legion alpha template to create a character. This is located near the Enter World button.

Providing Feedback
We’d love to hear about your experiences on the Broken Isles, so once you’ve had a chance to play, please send us your feedback.
  • For general feedback, use the in-game Feedback interface.
  • For crashes, please use the Crash Reporter feature that appears when the client crashes.
  • For general game bugs, use the in-game Bug Report interface.
  • If you’re getting a wrong version error, please uninstall and reinstall the client.
  • Discuss the alpha with your fellow testers in our Legion alpha General Discussion and Bug Report forums.

How do I opt in?
Once you’ve set up a Battle.net account and have attached at least one Blizzard game, you can choose to opt in to future beta tests from the Beta Profile page—just check the box next to which games you’re interested in testing. Once that’s complete, it’s simply a matter of waiting for an invitation.

Legion Alpha Test Information
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
We're keeping this infographic updated throughout Legion testing to update you on which zones, dungeons, and specs now available for testing.


For Azeroth!
This article was originally published in forum thread: Legion Alpha Design Notes, Tank and Healer Tuning, Logging Feature, New Alpha Content started by chaud View original post
Comments 70 Comments
  1. Irisel's Avatar
    Wow, glad I'm not holding my breathe for Resto Shaman info.
  1. alocer's Avatar
    so looking like the only place this is ready to reply to is US forums (just for a change). jeez Bliz get a grip and open these up worldwide, as apparently there are tanks in the EU and Asia as well, my apologies if there are open threads on those forums, but aint seen any myself
  1. Stellan's Avatar
    "In the latest Legion Alpha build, tanks and healers will notice significant changes to the tuning on many of their defensive abilities."

    Making the game harder on the backs of healer. Cataclysm redux.
  1. Tjur's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Stellan View Post
    "In the latest Legion Alpha build, tanks and healers will notice significant changes to the tuning on many of their defensive abilities."

    Making the game harder on the backs of healer. Cataclysm redux.
    I am reading this as actually being easier overall. It sounds more like they want to make Elite Mobs in instances weaker- note their comment of a 'poor' healer or dps that gets one shotted.

    I am primarily a healer and I loved how hard it was to heal in Cataclysm. It felt like I had accomplished something when it was over.

    The problem with Cataclysm was the impatience of so many newer players who thought dungeons should be hack and slash ala Diablo. CC freaks some people out.

    I am hating the Fisher Price Age 3 skill level that so many players scream for outside of Mythic. Heck- some players want Mythic nerfed.
  1. Colonel SnackyCakes's Avatar
    Ugggh.. Another hit to Tank survivability and requiring much more emphasis on your healers is stupid. I understand that against Bosses we shouldn't be able to go without a healer and live for ages. But inside our CD's we should be able to not need a healer all the time still. It is the entire point of HAVING the CD. Since you usually need to pop them when you've lost your healer for a moment or because a large amount of damage will be coming in.

    They did this at the start of Cata and WoD and quickly learnt that Tanks were getting absolutely crushed and buffed all their defense up. Yet they are going for round 3 in legion?.

    Sometimes Blizz...Sometimes you make the most stupid decisions. Tanks are meant to be Sturdy and able to mitigate damage. Just making them Threat machines with only slightly better survivability than DPS makes me not want to even touch being a Tank after 10 years if I permanently have to rely on the competence(or rather incompetence) of healers 24/7 in group content.
  1. Dontrike's Avatar
    All of those mounts are awesome, especially the fox and fish, and I am loving that possible druid tier. That mechanical wolf better be a mount at some point.

    I am liking the skin update to kodos and corgis. The arcane anomaly should be what void form looks like. I like the new bat model, now they don't look completely crazy for no reason but actual bats now. The nightmare creatures are looking pretty good, especially the dragon and they added enough difference to the roc model to make it stand out.

    Celestial hippo is a bit silly, but I like the celestial rabbit.
  1. babyback's Avatar
    I play neither a tank or a healer but I can see where this is going.

    Tank popping cool downs without knowing when to use them, tank dies, tank blame healer. This will lead to less people wanting to play healers.
  1. Saafe's Avatar
    yay more reskins yass
  1. Ausr's Avatar
    Yeah... last time I remember "We're going to do a steady damage stream instead of burst" was WoD and well, that didn't happen.
  1. grexly75's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Jack Flash View Post
    Ugggh.. Another hit to Tank survivability and requiring much more emphasis on your healers is stupid. I understand that against Bosses we shouldn't be able to go without a healer and live for ages. But inside our CD's we should be able to not need a healer all the time still. It is the entire point of HAVING the CD. Since you usually need to pop them when you've lost your healer for a moment or because a large amount of damage will be coming in.

    They did this at the start of Cata and WoD and quickly learnt that Tanks were getting absolutely crushed and buffed all their defense up. Yet they are going for round 3 in legion?.

    Sometimes Blizz...Sometimes you make the most stupid decisions. Tanks are meant to be Sturdy and able to mitigate damage. Just making them Threat machines with only slightly better survivability than DPS makes me not want to even touch being a Tank after 10 years if I permanently have to rely on the competence(or rather incompetence) of healers 24/7 in group content.
    Will be interesting to see how long this idea of theirs lasts, maybe when there are no tanks and healers left to do dungeons and raids with.. Would have thought they learned their lesson after the early Cata dungeon fiasco and they hurriedly nerfed things left and right.. As before will be interesting to see how long this lasts before they have to backpedal in a timely fashion..

    Because not all people who play tanks can play them that well as it is now and this idea of theirs only serves to have what tanks are left go to other classes and or the people playing those classes leaving the game..
  1. Rude Hero's Avatar
    Luminescence - Whenever you're healed by any source, all nearby allies within 10 yards are also healed for 30% of the amount.
    Ha ha ha ha HA HA HA HA
  1. Ealyssa's Avatar
    Legion -> Back to MoP where DPS could tank heroic dungeon easily...
  1. Triggered Fridgekin's Avatar
    Why do all the quadripeds have fucked up necks and jaws? Looks like they're stretched out.

    They must have given up on Healers and mana though since they've been trying to reinvent that wheel for several expansions so I guess they'll just make everyone take more damage to make up for it by gutting defensive CDs for everyone.

    Encounter design will be adjusted to account for these changes. Overwhelming burst damage will be toned down, in favor of more steady and consistent damage on tanks.

    Ah, I remember when they threw this same kind of thinking towards the removal of movement casting by saying encounters will be tuned to take this in to account and yet we've had the one of the most demanding raid environments in regards to movement.
  1. aeuhe4yxzhds's Avatar
    Oh look, another fucking beta that im not invited to yet being a costumer since launch.
  1. ChaosWolf's Avatar
    Robot wolf. Hell yes.
  1. Tjur's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by aeuhe4yxzhds View Post
    Oh look, another fucking beta that im not invited to yet being a costumer since launch.
    First- it is not beta yet.

    Second, they really are big on proper spelling for communicating easier and searching for common issues via feedback DB searches.

    Cursing at them like an 11 year old who just learned their first bad words will also not place you at the top of the list of people for which to turn to fine tune development.

    Alpha and Betas are not rewards for free playtime nor are any of us owed invites. I used to have a website for my old guild. I got early invites then. Now? Site is gone. Invites are gone for now. I will probably get an invite the first week or two of beta though. If not. Oh well.

    WoD's alpha and early beta started out great. Then they opened the floodgates. Just like every other time they did this, the beta servers were overflowing with raging Eric Cartmans who could not understand why something did not work or some place was not available. These guys would curse endlessly in General Chat.

    Don't be That Guy.
  1. Jakins's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by aeuhe4yxzhds View Post
    Oh look, another fucking beta that im not invited to yet being a costumer since launch.
    Probably because it's ALPHA, not beta.
  1. Midnitte's Avatar
    What the hell happened to you Gul'dan?
  1. Darkhallows's Avatar
    Holy fucking shit, that robot wolf better be tameable. I'm so hard right now.
  1. solarfallz's Avatar
    I don't understand Blizzard's new obsession with "active mitigation". I much prefer passive avoidance.

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