World of Warcraft News and Raiding Strategies RSS Feed

by Published on 2015-03-09 02:58 AM

Play Your Way Stream Recap, Maintenance Reminder, Alkaizer GR 51

[SPOILER] Blackrock Mountain Grim Guzzler / Coren Direbrew First Look

PAX East 2015 Heroes Recap, Epic Plays of the Week

Mythic Blackhand Kill Videos
Paragon and Midwinter have also released their kill videos.





Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
PvP
I spent an hour and a half in Ashran and got one box, a couple hundred honor, and zero conquest points. It sucked. A lot.
Thanks for the feedback and for presenting it reasonably. (holinka)

I'm not sure how to feel about the Ashran change. When events appear my team is overrun instantly and we have to wait for the next.
now that the queue times are under control, we may lower the player cap in Ashran. It would help the overwhelming force problem. (holinka)
won't use personal account to speak about wow issues...... Unless it's ashran or to promote pvp tournaments cause pvp is fine lol
Yes I will continue to promote WoW and PvP through Twitter. No I won't discuss design issues. Thanks for catching me on that. (holinka)

Garrisons
Love the Garrison Jukebox, but I thought Portable Audiophone would work more like an iPod. I need a jukebox for the mine/town hall
The idea of an in-game music player that picks from any available track is kind of a cool idea, right? (Muffinus)
That would be amazing. I rarely mute the in game music, but I get super nostalgic to hear the old tracks now and then.
The track that plays when you enter the imp area of molten core before the first boss is my jam. (Muffinus)

Misc
Has the hate really even that bad on your end? I know it's wow pvp but you seem more withdrawn on twitter regarding WoW.
We decided to have all WoW discussions from and not our personal twitter accounts. (holinka)

Computers - Setup of the Month
Each month or so we will post a couple of hardware setups for those of you who are thinking of upgrading their computer!

This month
The current SSD prices are trending slightly downward again over the past few months, with most SSDs under $0.50 per gigabyte when on sale.

New GPUs from AMD may be coming in the second half of this year, but no official announcements have been made.

Depending on how much you want to overclock, you may need to spend a bit more for a better CPU cooler like the NH-D14.

Unless you are doing a lot of video rendering or streaming, you do not need the 4790K and should spend that money elsewhere.

Make sure to keep your AMD and Nvidia drivers up to date.

Don't hesitate to post any feedback in the comments of that news post, and don't forget to visit the Computer Forum for any extra questions!


Peripherals/Monitors
ComponentPuppy Dolphin
MonitorASUS VS228H-P 22-Inch Monitor - $120ASUS VS248H-P 24-Inch Monitor - $195
KeyboardKensington Pro Fit Media Keyboard - $21Cyborg V.5 - $53
MouseLogitech G402 - $46Razer DeathAdder - $58
SpeakersCreative A250 2.1 Speaker System - $30Logitech Z313 Speaker System - $34
ComponentNarwhal Unicorn
MonitorDell P2414H Monitor - $256Dell U2412M - $290
KeyboardLogitech G510s - $70CM Storm QuickFire XT - $91
MouseLogitech G502 - $67Razer Naga 2014 - $61
SpeakersLogitech Z323 2.1 Speaker System - $61Logitech Speaker System Z523 - $90


Puppy and Dolphin
All of these parts can be mixed and matched to create a build between Puppy and Dolphin.
ComponentPuppy Dolphin
CaseNZXT Source 220 - $45NZXT Source 220 - $45
Power SupplyEVGA 600B - $55EVGA 600B - $55
CPUAMD FX-6300 - $100AMD FX-8320 - $140
HeatsinkCooler Master Hyper 212 EVO - $35Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO - $35
MotherboardASUS M5A97 R2.0 - $94ASUS M5A99FX PRO - $139
MemoryKingston HyperX Blue 4GB 1600 - $378GB G.Skill DDR3 1600 - $73
Graphics CardXFX R7 260X - $102Gigabyte R9 270X / GTX 960 - $155 / $200
Hard DriveWestern Digital Caviar Blue 500GB - $45Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB - $70
DVDAsus 24X SATA DVD+/-RW - $21Asus 24X SATA DVD+/-RW - $21
Total$534$733 - 778


Narwhal and Unicorn
All of these parts can be mixed and matched to create a build between Narwhal and Unicorn.
ComponentNarwhal Unicorn
CaseCooler Master HAF 912 - $70Corsair Air 540 - $125
Power SupplyXFX Pro 750W - $100XFX Pro 750W - $100
CPUIntel 4690K - $233Intel 4690K - $233
HeatsinkScythe Mugen 4 - $50Noctua 6 NH-D14 - $82
MotherboardASUS Z97-A - $160ASUS Z97-A - $160
Memory8GB G.Skill DDR3 1600 - $7316GB G.Skill DDR3 1600 - $140
Graphics CardXFX R9 280X - $240XFX R9 290X OR MSI GTX 970 - $330
Hard DriveWestern Digital 1TB Caviar Black - $70Western Digital 2TB Caviar Black - $125
SSDCrucial MX100 128GB (Review) - $67
OR
SanDisk Extreme II 120GB (Review) - $90
SAMSUNG 850 EVO 120GB - $76
OR
SAMSUNG 850 Pro 128GB (Review) - $100
DVDAsus 24X SATA DVD+/-RW - $21Asus 24X SATA DVD+/-RW - $21
Total$1017 - 1117$1383 - $1416


Fan Concept - Reign of Azshara Expansion
Golden Yak made a nice post with a fan concept of a Reign of Azshara expansion, complete with a map, logo, and some artwork. He recently added more art for a X.1 patch.



GW2: Heart of Thorns - Closed Beta Coming Soon
If you are interested in the Guild Wars 2 expansion, Heart of Thorns, be sure to sign up for the beta!



Dark Legacy Comics #480 - Home Alone
DLC #480 takes a look at the new social interaction added in Patch 6.1.

by Published on 2015-03-07 05:31 AM

4-Piece Sets to Become 6-Piece, Minor Patch for PTR, Gem Farming Trick

Mythic Blackhand Kill Video
Method has released their Mythic Blackhand kill video!



Patch 6.1 Hotfixes - March 6
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Cosmetic Transformations and Toy Effects
  • Demonology Warlock Metamorphosis should now correctly have priority over cosmetic transformation effects.

Classes
  • Hunter (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
    • General
      • Fixed an issue where Steady Focus could incorrectly trigger without using Cobra Shot twice in a row.
  • Shaman (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
    • Elemental
      • Chain Lightning Multistrikes should no longer be incorrectly triggering Enhanced Chain Lightning twice in a row.

Raids and Dungeons
  • Legacy
    • Dark Heart of Pandaria (Scenario): Creatures in the scenario should no longer incorrectly scale to level 100.

Bug Fixes
  • Fixed an issue where Character Boosting a Protection Paladin was not granting Cold Weather Flying.

Rolling on Spirit and Bonus Armor Gear
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Both Spirit and Bonus Armor are intended to help restrict the number of people in a given raid who may be interested in a particular item. The OP makes a perfect argument as to why we want that distinction: he wanted the Blackiron Micro Crucible, but had resigned himself to only really having a shot at it from a bonus roll or a cache as there were so many others in his raid group who wanted it too. That's a crappy situation.

Bonus Armor is currently working well for creating that distinction. DPS specializations don't get anything from it, but it's far and away the best stat for tanks -- so much so that tanks will nearly always prefer an item that grants Bonus Armor over an item that doesn't, even if the item with no Bonus Armor is much higher in item level.

Prior to 6.1, we were getting a ton of feedback from tanks who were extremely disappointed to receive trinkets, rings, etc. with no Bonus Armor through their bonus rolls. It felt like a waste of a seal or cache to get something that your loot spec would realistically never equip. Plus, it's a bit of a false lead for inexperienced players; if Blizzard gave me a higher item level crit/multistrike amulet via bonus rolls, it must be an upgrade, right?

We got similar feedback from many healers, which caused us to take a look at how Spirit was functioning. Ultimately, we want Spirit to work similarly: a stat that's so good, you want it everywhere you can get it. If that's not the case for you, we'd like to fix that by making Spirit more attractive, not by making you want to equip non-Spirit items (and fight with half your raid over them).

We made some changes along those lines in 6.1 (such as the Mistweaver changes to Mana Tea). We feel that, with those changes, we're now in a position now where healers should always prefer Spirit pieces in the ring, neck, and back slots. The nature of trinkets makes them a little less cut-and-dry: in the vast majority of situations, you should prefer the Spirit trinket, but there could conceivably be a situation in which a DPS trinket would give better performance. We're still discussing what (if any) changes would need to be made to prevent those niche occurrences, but again, our goal is that you don't want the DPS trinkets.

Unfortunately Lore that is not always how stat optimization works. I'll take a dps haste trinket over spirit any day for the purpose it serves me, but removing my ability to bonus roll on said item drastically hurts my gearing process.
If that's the case, then our fix would be to either make the Spirit trinket better or the DPS trinket worse for healers. We don't want DPS and healers fighting over the same trinkets.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Arena Skirmish Healer Spec Bug
There is indeed a bug with skirmish queues at the moment that's causing healers to be forced into DPS specs. We've got a hotfix on the way for it, but it won't take effect until server restarts (which currently aren't planned until normal maintenance time). (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Legendary Follower Abilities
I am not sure if they were trolls but apparently thie "Legendary" follower only has 2 abilities and 3 traits like an epic.
Ultimately, adding another ability didn’t feel Legendary to us especially given that most players have solid ability coverage across their existing group of followers. Instead, we put the extra “Legendary” into a trait that acts like an ability that can counter anything. This felt awesome and like the right direction to take Legendary followers. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Legacy Content Gold Changes
Historically "escort" and "breadcrumb" type quests that just ask you to talk to an NPC have always given little or no gold. There was no intended change here, and I believe that no change occurred. It's possible that there's a subtle bug, but numerous posters in this thread seem to report that gold rewards from quests while leveling are in fact unchanged. If there are specific examples of quests that used to award gold, but which no longer do, we'd be interested in hearing about them here, or on our Bug Report forum.

Gold from questing is an essential source of gold for leveling and max-level players alike, and not something we would suddenly and wordlessly remove or reduce.

If someone could provide screenshots of specific item nerfs, this would be helpful. Since they are saying no nerfs are intentional, it is beneficial to show them the nerfs that are in place so they can reverse them ASAP.
That's a separate issue from quest gold, which was not changed at all to my knowledge. Several legacy items (old epic gems, and crafting reagents like Crusader Orbs, Chaos Orbs, Sulfuron Ingots, etc.) were significantly reduced in vendor value in order to limit the impact of an exploit. These items honestly don't constitute a very large portion of total gold earnings from running old raids and dungeons, compared to boss gold drops and vendored weapons and armor. Because the change was exploit-oriented, it was excluded from our patch notes, but it probably should have been messaged more clearly in order to avoid surprise.

Again, as a matter of philosophy, we find nothing at all wrong with players making a non-trivial amount of gold from something like a weekly Black Temple or Icecrown transmog run at max level. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Overwatch: New Heroes - McCree and Zarya
Blizzard announced two new heroes and a new map today. McCree is a Bounty Hunter with a revolver. Zarya is a Russian, pink-haired soldier with a particle cannon. Gibraltar is a new payload map. You can find more information on Overpwn. Beta is coming during Fall 2015.





Hearthstone: Blackrock Mountain - New Cards, Card Backs, Gameboard, Cinematic
Blizzard announced the next Hearthstone expansion today: Blackrock Mountain. You can find all of the details over on Hearthpwn.

  • There are five wings in the adventure. They are 700 gold / $7 each or $25 for all five.
  • Wings will be released weekly, with no free initial wing.
  • There are 31 new cards, with new card backs for real money pre-orders and Heroic mode, and a new game board.





Heroes of the Storm - New Battleground, Heroes, and Tweaks
Heroes of the Storm also had a few new announcements today. Check out all of the details on Heroes Nexus.

  • Sylvanas Windrunner is a new hero
  • Tomb of the Spider Queen is a new underground compact battleground with a collection mechanic
  • The UI is getting some upgrades
  • No more talent gating after Account Level 30!





FinalBoss #72 - Method Interview
FinalBoss talked to Method about their world first kill this week. Sunday's episode covers Arms Warriors!

by Published on 2015-03-06 08:02 AM

D3's Panel at GDC 2015, PTR Buff May Return, Blizzcon Ring Visuals

Blizzard's Announcements at PAX East 2015, Golden Card Creation

PAX East Heroes Announcements Tomorrow at 10:30 AM EST!

"An Inside Job" - Legendary Quest Line Cinematic
Players that were very lucky with drops have already completed Chapter III: The Foundry Falls, which unlocks this cinematic and the item level 710 ring.



Patch 6.1 - Legendary Quests
Patch 6.1 added several new legendary quests to lead up to the cinematic above. There are several spoilers in the quest text, so check the quest pages to see it.

The Final Assault is the final quest that asks us to wait for Patch 6.2. Click through to the quest for spoilers.


Level Name Rewards Objective
100The Unbroken Circle
Pick one:
Speak with Archmage Khadgar to upgrade your ring.
100Prisoner of the MindSpeak with Khadgar and protect him while he casts his spell on Garona.
100Orb of DominionRetrieve an Orb of Dominion from the Den of Secrets in Shadowmoon Valley.
100The Shadow WarSlay 15 Shadow Council members in the Den of Secrets.
100Breaking BadnessSpeak with Khadgar and assist him as he frees Garona from Gul'dan's mind control.
100To Gul'dan!Speak with Archmage Khadgar outside of Bladefury's Command in Northern Talador.
100An Inside JobInfiltrate Bladefury's Command with Garona's help. Use her talents to eliminate guards without being seen. Locate Iron Horde intelligence and then spy on Gul'dan.
100My Garona
100The Final AssaultPrepare your garrison and await further instructions from Archmage Khadgar. [Coming in Patch 6.2!]


Patch 6.1.2 - WoW Token
The WoW Token went live on the PTR for testing tonight. Keep in mind that prices are just for testing and don't reflect what they will be on live.



Patch 6.1.2 PTR - Build 19728
Build 19728 was deployed to the PTR realms tonight.

Strings Changes
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
  • ACCOUNT_REACTIVATE_GOLD_REMAINING - Gold Remaining: |cffffffff%s|r
  • ACCOUNT_REACTIVATE_LOGOUT_NOTICE - You will be logged out of the game when this transaction completes.
  • TOKEN_COMPLETE_GAME_TIME_DESCRIPTION_MINUTES - 2700 minutes of game time will be added to your World of Warcraft account. You will receive a confirmation email shortly.
  • TOKEN_CONFIRM_GAME_TIME_DESCRIPTION_MINUTES - 2700 minutes of game time will be added to your World of Warcraft account. This game time is nonrefundable.
  • TOKEN_CURRENT_AUCTION_VALUE - Current Auction Value: %s|n(subject to change)
  • TOKEN_REDEEM_GAME_TIME_BUTTON_LABEL_MINUTES - 2700 Minutes of Game Time
  • TOKEN_REDEEM_GAME_TIME_DESCRIPTION_MINUTES - Adds 2700 minutes of game time to this World of Warcraft account.
  • TUTORIAL_TOKEN_GAME_TIME_STEP_2_MINUTES - 2. Redeem it for 2700 minutes of game|n time.



Patch 6.1.2 PTR Patch Notes
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Patch 6.1.2 is now available for testing on the Public Test Realms (PTR)! Participating on the Public Test Realms lets you test patches before it has been released on live realms. If you'd like to help test and provide feedback, you can start by copying your character and downloading the PTR client. Once you've had a chance to try things out, visit our PTR Discussion 6.1.2 forum to discuss the patch. To report issues or errors, use the in-game Submit Bug feature (found under Game Menu -> Help -> Submit Bug) or by visiting the PTR Bug Report 6.1.2 forum.

Introducing the WoW Token
Coming soon to an Azeroth near you: the WoW Token, a new in-game item that allows players to simply and securely exchange gold and game time between each other.

Players will be able to purchase a WoW Token through the in-game Shop for real money, and then sell it on the Auction House for gold at the current market price. When a player buys a WoW Token from the Auction House for gold, the Token becomes Soulbound, and the player can then redeem it for 30 days of game time.

  • The WoW Token feature will be enabled at a future date. Patch 6.1.2 adds in the framework needed for the WoW Token feature in the game client and is not active at this time. In the meantime, check out this FAQ for details on how the feature works.

Patch 6.1 Hotfixes - March 5
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Classes
  • Druid (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
    • General
      • Dash should no longer continue to provide an increase to movement speed if the Druid shapeshifts out of Cat Form.
  • Mage (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
    • Fire
      • Mastery: Ignite modified by Glyph of Ignite should now correctly apply its snare effect when Ignite is spread by Inferno Blast.
  • Monk (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
    • Talents
      • Charging Ox Wave should now be correctly categorized as a Stun effect for diminishing returns.
  • Paladin (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
    • General
      • Fixed an issue where Glyph of Flash of Light's effect could be incorrectly consumed by other Paladin's casting Flash of Light on the target.
    • Talents
      • Saved by the Light (Holy) should now be able to trigger its effect without requiring line-of-sight with the casting Paladin.
  • Rogue (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
    • General
      • Fixed an issue where macros intended to work while Shadow Dance (Subtlety) was active would stop working when the effects of Subterfuge (Talent) ended.
      • [Requires a realm restart] Fixed an issue where Rogues were incorrectly being affected by crowd control abilities while in the middle of Death from Above (Talent).
  • Shaman (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
    • Elemental
      • Ascendance for Elemental Shaman should now correctly have its cooldown reset at the end of a raid encounter.

Garrisons, Followers, and Outposts
  • Garrison Missions
    • Level 95-99 Garrison Missions should now repopulate more quickly.
    • Level 90-99 Treasure Hunter Missions (Inn, Level 3) now award less gold. Gold awarded from Level 100 Treasure Hunter Missions remains unchanged.
    • Level 95 Mission: Shreddercide, Level 97 Mission: Curiosity Killed Them, and Level 99 Mission: Raider Danger now awards Bonus Follower XP instead of Garrison Resources.
    • Completing Patrol Missions should now correctly contribute credit towards completing the "Patrolling Draenor" achievement.

Quests
  • Legendary Ring Quest Line
    • An Inside Job: Resolved an issue that prevented a cinematic from playing upon completion of the quest.
  • Frostfire Ridge
    • The Iron Wolf: Players that have upgraded to a Tier 3 Garrison without completing Thunderlord Invasion! are now able to obtain this quest.

Environment and World Events
  • [Requires a realm restart] Players that have already obtained Voidtalon of the Dark Star are no longer able to interact with or enter Edge of Reality Portals.

Battlegrounds and Arenas
  • Queueing for an Arena Skirmish now allows everyone in the party (instead of only the party leader) to select roles other than Damage Dealing.

New World of Warcraft Comic: Blood and Thunder
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Fenris Wolfbrother’s bravery and strength is matched only by his desire to prove himself a capable warrior at any cost. While his father Garad, chieftain of the Frostwolves, warns Fenris of the perils of putting one’s own whims before the needs of the family, the neighboring Thunderlord clan hunts and slays the dangerous Gronn without restriction or remorse.

Envious of the Thunderlord and dismissive of his father’s teachings, Fenris begins a double life. During the day, he will be a tame, obedient Frostwolf… at night, under a different name, he becomes something else entirely.

But Fenris must still bear responsibility for both his actions and those of the “Iron Wolf.”


We invite you to read and download the free comic, “Blood and Thunder,” written by Raphael Ahad and illustrated by Alex Horley.

Learn more about Fenris’ past and future at Characters of Warcraft: Fenris.
by Published on 2015-03-05 06:54 AM

Changes to Vanilla Sets, PTR Legendary Buff Off, Fire or Ice DH

Hearthstone UI Design, Mobile Start Screens, Deck Spotlight: Spark's Deadly Tactics

Closed Beta Test Friend Invites Incoming, Upcoming Mount Changes

Patch 6.1 Hotfixes - March 4
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Darkmoon Faire
  • Tonk Challenge
    • Players are no longer able to destroy other players' Tonk Targets.
    • Increased the number of Tonk Targets spawned at the start of a Tonk Challenge session to 9 (up from 7). This should make the Ace Tonk Commander achievement more obtainable.

Classes

Raids and Dungeons
  • Blackrock Foundry
    • The Blast Furnace
      • Phase 1: Security Guard's Defense ability now reduces damage taken by most allies by 90% (down from 99%).
  • Grimrail Depot
    • Skylord Tovra: Fixed an issue where Rakun may not placing pools of Diffused Energy correctly while flying overhead.
  • Legacy
    • Icecrown Citadel: Players should now be able to change between Normal and Heroic difficulty after defeating Valithria Dreamwalker.

Pet Battle
  • Battle Pet Abilities
    • Sandstorm should now correctly reduce damage dealt to all pets.

Bug Fixes
  • Fixed a graphical issue that could occur by using Reflecting Prism on a character that's transformed and riding a mount.
  • Fixed an error in calculating the shortest flight path from Ironforge to the Isle of Quel'Danas.

Doubleagent - Level 100 Neutral Pandaren
Doubleagent has finally hit level 100!



Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Character / Items
6.1 and Monk transmog set from the salvage yard is still broken. Gloves and shoulders can't be used for transmog. Frustrating.
This is the intended functionality for those items as they are "invisible". (WarcraftDevs)

Seriously, , why change the way the coffee and mining picks worked? Now I'm getting 0 picks, have coffee coming out of my ears
You can obtain a permanent mining speed bonus from a treasure in Spires, and the coffee buff now stacks! (WarcraftDevs)

Can't use my Chauffeured Chopper on my brand new Panda Monk the tool tip says "you are not the right faction for this mount"
Mounts (code-wise) don't support a non-faction, and these mounts are also visually faction-specific. Unlikely to be changed. (WarcraftDevs)

PvP
why make it so wins in the main event in ashran don't give conquest? alliance can't win side events so now it's impossible
The two factions were avoiding each other in Ashran. We are altering rewards to encourage competition. (WarcraftDevs)
how about making a continent wide buff to encourage PvP in ashran
thanks we're on it (holinka)

Please make a post and explain your intentions in hunter/feral buffs in an pvp environment.The burst is just crazy.
We're monitoring how recent damage increases are affecting PvP and we'll make any adjustments accordingly. (WarcraftDevs)

GDC 2015 - How Blizzard's Warcraft Brought Hearthstone to Life
Gamespot has a nice video of the talk Blizzard gave about creating the Hearthstone UI. Some of the highlights are below:

Early Concepts
  • The initial game that got approved was Warcraft Legends, with a build called Fire and Ice.
  • One concept had players traveling across the world doing single player quests and content.
  • The game was initially created entirely in Flash.
  • The pre-alpha board was complicated and looked boring.
  • Other ideas that came up were an Adventure Book, 3D Cards, Hologram Cards, a board that was a tree stump
  • The initial matchmaking screen had an over the top hero selection animation with sound effects, hero voice emotes, and ending with a "Fight" sound.
  • The next itteration had a box that opened to a map of the world. You then selected your hero, the map ripped in half to reveal a Google Earth like video of Azeorth, zooming in while showing names of players battling. Once your match was found, both player names were displayed and the somewhat familiar Hearthstone board appeared.
  • The box still exists in a more polished form in the live game. Treys and keys are used in the UI to go along with the box theme.
  • The box had to sit somewhere, so the team decided it was sitting on a table in a tavern, which you can see in different loading and other screens.
  • The same idea was fully realized for Blizzcon, with a very nice Hearthstone tavern stage set.

Physical UI
  • The UI started with a flat parchment style UI, then they decided it should be more 3D. Next they made it more physical, added magic, added some charm, and then made it feel valuable and constructed.
  • The current trend is building flat UIs, which didn't fit Hearthstone. The team went for a more physical UI, as it fit the game better.
  • The physical UI made things like keys, card backs, and card packs feel more valuable.
  • Opening a pack of cards is an important part of the experience. The team tried to replicate the physical experience of opening a card pack with the game's sounds and visuals.
  • Many parts of the UI bounce or rotate, giving them a more physical feel.
  • The physical UI worked out well when the team decided to bring the game to mobile devices. The UI already had a lot of nice elements for touch, such as the cards tilting when you moved them around and clicking the board causing dust to fly up.
  • The game has a lot of over the shoulder appeal, which is important for a collectable card game. Someone walking by and seeing you play it will be interested.
  • The physical UI is hard to expand. Currently the screen has nine hero slots, but how can it be rearranged for more.
  • It took a long time and a lot of tries to get the UI right, but it was important because that is a huge part of the game.
  • The physical UI also is designed for flavor over efficiency, to a certain extent.

UI Importance
  • Some games come up with mechanics and gameplay and then treat the UI as an afterthought. The Hearthstone team realized that the UI design was as important as the game design.
  • If the UI was too complicated, it was a signal to design that things may be too complicated.
  • The board could only fit 7 minions as designed, so rather than scaling them down the team capped it at 7.
  • Decks were initially 60 cards, with the list on the right scrolling down over three pages. It was too much for new players to keep in their head.
  • An older concept allowed for chains, where your opponent could play a card, you could play a card in response to that card, and so on. This was a mess visually and complicated to design and play, so it was removed.
  • The team starts with a feature by some simple wireframing, then iterates on it in 2D until it feels right, and then brings in 3D to make sure it will work.

Q&A
  • There are no plans to allow modification of Hearthstone like addons allow in WoW.
  • There is a UI group that meets and the other teams are taking note of how the physical UI worked well.
  • No effects are sacrificed for the mobile versions of Hearthstone, they just optimize them so performance is acceptable.
  • Hearthstone on phones is pretty far along and looks awesome, so expect to hear more in the next couple of months.
  • The need for more deck slots is a known issue that is under discussion.



NerfNow #1503 - Token
NerfNow #1503 takes a look at the impact of the WoW Token.


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