MMO-Champion - World of Warcraft News and Raiding Strategies

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by Published on 2012-05-12 07:11 AM

Diablo 3 - Achievements, Item Affixes, Boss Info, Legendary Item Information, Set Items, and Monster Affixes

Priest and Monk Arena Set Videos
The new video preview should be fairly representative of the set you will see in the final version of the game!









Pet Battle System Update
Since we last covered the Pet Battle system, there have been a few changes and things we didn't mention last time. The table below shows the new pet abilities added in the recent patches.

  • You are now able to rename pets as many times as you would like.
  • You are unable to use your character to attack the critters that you can do pet battles with.
  • When doing a pet battle, only the pets you fight with will gain experience, which is granted relative to the amount of damage they do.
  • During a battle, the mobs that are very close will disappear, leaving only the farther away mobs. They will not interact with you until the battle is over.
  • Pets now have a quality similar to items which is not based on the pet itself, as the same pet can have different quality levels for different people.
  • When your pet dies in battle, you can switch to the next one. The damage persists between battles now, requiring healing using a Battle Pet Bandage or Revive Pets.
  • The auction house now has a section for the different types of pets. You can sell almost every pet after using the cage function in the pet journal.


Name Type Power Cooldown Duration Accuracy
BleatCritter154 rounds100%
ChewCritter01 round100%
DevourBeast301 round100%
PounceBeast1590%
ProwlBeast05 rounds100%



Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Low Population Server Issues
We do realize that this system does not address all of the issues affecting low population and faction imbalanced realms, but we do feel that it will improve things quite a bit. This is a brand new technology being developed for World of Warcraft, with the purpose of bringing life back to the more barren parts of the world, so this is only the start. What needs to be understood with the cross-realm zones technology is that it opens more doors to future systems that could help with those other matters as well.

There is still no solution how can guilds on our realm find new people for PvE or PvP. What a shame...
This system will actually assist you in finding players to PvP and PvE with, not to join your guild, but they can join you through the cross-server groups and raids features. While leveling up you will once again have more players in the world to interact with. With friendly players, you will be able to interact with them and maybe end up on each other’s friends’ lists, and grouping up again later for either PvP or PvE. With more players of the opposite faction running about, you will also have more world PvP too

This technology and the systems surrounding it are still in development and as such your feedback on them is greatly appreciated. We hope to have more innovative technologies and systems coming in the future that will keep improving the World of Warcraft experience for everyone! (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Healer Leveling Feedback
1) Spirit doesn't mean "this is for healers" the same way Strength means "this is for plate-wearers." We assume healers will have some pieces with Spirit and some without, depending on their regen needs. If a boss drops cloth with haste and mastery, and you say "there is no healer gear on this boss" we are going to respectfully disagree. That was my point.

2) On the other hand, if you just can't find any Spirit gear anywhere, that would be a problem.

3) It's likewise a problem if say mail, leather or plate-wearers can find Spirit much easier than cloth. That shouldn't be the case, but bugs happen so we'll take a look at it.

4) All healers should have about the same longevity, but that includes all of their sources of mana and the cost of their spells. This isn't an easy thing to compare just by looking at e.g. Meditation.

5) You should have plenty of mana to heal level up dungeons and even heroics. You might need to reforge or be on the look out for a few more Spirit pieces, but overall you shouldn't feel that every pull and boss fight is a nail-biting mana battle. (Mana will matter a lot more for raiding and challenge modes.) We want level 90 in blues to feel a little easier than level 85 in blues, so please let us know if that's not the case.

6) It's possible there are bad points in progression before level 90, because we haven't looked at that as much yet. If you have just hit say level 88 and haven't gotten any new level 88 gear yet and run a dungeon, it's possible mana return is lower than intended. Feedback on that is also useful. Do keep in mind that at this stage you might run into a boss that is horribly overtuned or just bugged. Just because you can't keep a tank alive doesn't necessarily mean that your mana needs to be massively buffed. It could mean we need to adjust the encounter. That said, the intent is not that you sit around idle much of the time, waiting for mana or too scared to waste a heal that isn't 100% critical.

Beta is going to be buggy and unpolished- very buggy and unpolished. It may not be a very enjoyable experience. It's not for everyone, and if you don't enjoy content in a half-implemented state, you might have a better experience waiting until the final product, which we will try our hardest to be as bug-free and polished as possible.

If you enjoy offering feedback before things are set in stone (insofar as they ever are in this game) and you don't mind seeing the inner workings of the sausage factory that is game development, then beta may be more fun for you.

P.S. I like to think I am less smug than snarky. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Death Knight (Forums)
Death Knights and Number of Class Changes
I'm not losing too much sleep, but for Warlocks they've had a huge set of changes and information and it's clear that they haven't been forgotten. It's not even hyperbole that Blizzard isn't listening to us, look at the notes. Look at the changes. Warlocks know they're being taken care of. We don't.
This is a tough issue for us to solve as far as forum discussions go, because we think some classes need larger changes than others. There will be some DK changes, but overall we don't think they have the spec identity problems that the warlock changes were largely intended to address.

It may not seem fair to classes or specs that aren't undergoing as many changes, but we try very hard not to monkey around with things just for the sake of changing systems that we think work. I'd agree that every class needs a little bit of newness in an expansion, but there is a lot of that from the talents and glyphs. That said, I will try to carve off some time to address some DK concerns. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Hunter (Forums)
Silkworm and Porcupine Pets
Just read a forum on petopia that said the silkworms and porcupines that are part of the "boar" family weren't meant to be tameable pets, but they forgot to change that part when they got rid of the boar placeholder models. Please don't take away my porcupine.
We decided these animals shouldn't be boars anymore, but they will be tameable. Silkworms can be worms. Porcupines can be their own family. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Warrior (Forums)
Warrior Feedback
For Arms, we're trying a new Taste for Blood right now, where the Overpower procs buff your next Slam instead of Overpower. The effect lasts longer than the buff in your build, and can stack up several times, but the general intent is you Slam when Overpower stops proc'ing. The decision point can come about whether to Slam or CS or MS if those are all available, and how much Rage you can afford to bleed off to Heroic Strikes and still have enough left for the big Slam. This is a pretty new change, so it's entirely possible we'll change it again before you see it. I just din't want anyone spending too much effort modeling the Overpower buffs Overpower design. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Dragon Soul Challenge
Join Athene once again as he leads another Dragon Soul Challenge. This time around there will be four guilds participating! Stars, Paragon, Blood Legion, and Exorsus will all be racing for first place to raise money for the Save the Children charity!

The event starts at 4PM GMT on May 12th with $3,500 in prizes up for grabs for the winners. A countdown timer for when the event will start can be found here.



Arena Junkies Invitational Tournament
Arena Junkies, together with help from Curse and Alienware, is going to be running the first ever Arena Junkies Invitational Tournament, featuring eight of the best 3v3 teams. These players will battle it out for glory and yet to be announced, but surely impressive prizes.

The eight teams will be broken into two groups of four and will play in a Round Robin format. The top two teams from each group will advance to face each other and vie for the spot in the Finals. The Round Robin matches will take place on May 19th & 20th at 3 PM EST. The Finals will take place on May 26th at 3 PM EST.



by Published on 2012-05-10 08:36 PM

Update: Clarification about realm grouping, initial zones, and zone splitting added.

Cross-Realm Zones Coming to Beta
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
In the World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria beta, we’re introducing a new technology that will enable players to meet up and group with other players in under populated areas of the world such as low level zones or areas that other players may have outleveled or moved on from. This technology will allow players to form a group with other players from within a select pool of realms in order to quest just like they normally would while still allowing the social structures of their home realms to remain intact.

During the initial phase of testing we will be sharing the following zones between the available beta realms: Northern Barrens, Ashenvale, Azshara, Darkshore, Westfall, and Silithus. We are also able to split over-populated zones and will be testing this new technology on the Pandaren starting area (turtle zone).

For beta testing purposes, we will be matching up all realm types whether they are PvP or PvE. This is different than what we plan to do for the live realms, however. For the live realms we will be matching realm types: PvP with PvP, PvE with PvE, RP-PvP with RP-PvP, and RP-PvE with RP-PvE. As always, we plan to keep an eye on constructive feedback while in testing of this new technology.

F.A.Q.

Q. Why cross-realm zones?
For many years now, the significant majority of the player population online at any given time has consisted mostly of characters at or near the level cap. This has resulted in an environment where characters that are leveling up experience a world that has fewer other players to interact with than what the world was designed for. Cross-realm zones give us the capability to ensure that level-up zones retain a population size that feels more like the high level areas of the game, leading to a more fun play experience for characters of all levels.

Q. How do cross-realm zones work?
When you’re in a zone that is set as a ‘cross-realm zone’ you’ll notice that in addition to the players you’d ordinarily see from your realm, you’ll also see (and be able to play with) players from other realms. This will happen seamlessly, and players will be able to group and quest as they normally would with players from their own realm.

Q. How will this work on boats or zeppelins?

Usually transitions will occur on area boundaries (think moving from Darkshore to Ashenvale).

Q. Can I form groups with the people I meet in the zone?
Yes! You can group and talk to others within the cross-server zone normally though trading will be restricted much as it is within raids, dungeons, or battlegrounds.

Q. Will my cross-realm group be disbanded if we move on to an adjacent zone together, like from Goldshire to Westfall or from Thousand Needles to Feralas?
Much like how cross-realm groups currently work, your party won’t be disbanded when you move through different zones, though if you’re not in the same home realm, you won’t be able to see each other if you’re in separate zone instances.

Q. Will I be able to group with my friends?
Yes, you will be able to group with your Real ID friends, provided they are within the same faction. The functionality works the same as it does for cross-realm dungeons, raids, or Battlegrounds.

Q. What level range do my friends and I have to be within in order to group?
There is no restriction on level ranges. You’ll be able to group with anyone you would normally be able to.

Q. Can I go into main capital cities while grouped with others?
Capital cities and areas with regularly high populations will not be set as cross-server areas/zones so you will not be able to enter into the same instance of a city as someone who is from a different realm.

Q. Will I be able to trade with others I meet?
Trading restrictions are in place much the same as they are in cross-realm dungeons, raids, and battlegrounds.

Q. How is group loot handled?
Group looting will function the same as it would with any group you would create through normal play.

Q. Who will I be playing with?
You’ll be able to interact with players from within a select pool of realms which will make it possible to run into a player in Redridge that you already ran into within Westfall.

Q. What areas will be shared?
This can vary from realm to realm and relies on how densely populated (or underpopulated) an area is. Capital cities and areas with regularly high populations will not be eligible for area sharing.

Q. What about resources or gathering nodes, will those be shared too?
Resources and nodes will be available to all parties within the shared area the same as always. We will be keeping a close eye on the impact of area sharing and should an area become too populated, we are capable of adjusting how many realms are able to connect to a shared area.

Q. Does this mean that Auction Houses will be merged?

No, when any player access an Auction House, they will be only able to access their home realm’s Auction House.

Q. What about zones that are already overpopulated, like new race starting zones?

With this technology, we can also flag zones to allow for more than one copy of that zone per realm. Players on that realm will be split among those copies in order to alleviate problems due to overpopulation. Players won’t normally see or interact with those on a different instance of their zone, although joining a party will relocate all party members to a single instance of that zone.

Q. How will this work for PvP vs. PvE realms? Will these realm types be shared?
No. Realm types will be matched with like realm types. So if you’re on a PvE realm, you’ll only be matched with other PvE realms. The same rules will apply for matching RP realm types and will be restricted to matching RP-PvP with RP-PvP and RP-PvE with RP-PvE. We plan to keep an eye on constructive feedback while testing this new technology.

Q. How will RID groups work? Which realm type would we play on?
If you group up with somebody from a different rule type (via RealID for example) and go into a cross-realm zone you’ll be on the ruleset for that player’s realm type. So, if you’re on a PvP realm and a friend joins your group from a PvE realm and enters a cross-realm zone, the group will be in one of the PvP realm clusters and will use the PvP realm ruleset.

Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Q: I really don't see any reason to group with others when everything is so easy to do at the lower levels. All these other people will be doing is killing my mobs and taking my resources.
The game is specifically designed with variable respawns, and huge influxes of players on launches. Having very few people in a zone is actually not what the game is supposed to be.

Q: Will be have to zone to every zone from now on then?
No, it's as seamless as it is today.
by Published on 2012-05-10 09:56 AM

Mists of Pandaria Beta - Build 15677
A new build will be deployed on beta realms soon'ish.

Item Upgrades
You can find the list of new client strings at the end of the post, but you might want to take a look at those two.
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
ITEM
  • ITEM_UPGRADE - Item Upgrade
ITEM_UPGRADE
  • ITEM_UPGRADE_DESCRIPTION - Use your valor points to upgrade a weapon or piece of armor that is level 375 or higher.



Arena Armor Sets - Priest



Arena Armor Sets - Monk



Druid Cat Form Armors
Druid cat forms now seems to have an armor, probably in relation with this blue post. There is an Alliance and a Horde version.



Achievement Changes
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
Pet Battles

Pandaria Raid
  • Candle in the Wind New: Defeat Blade Lord Ta'yak while all four braziers are lit, in Heart of Fear on Normal or Heroic difficulty.
  • Gara'jal Stub New: Do a thing and then defeat Gara'jal the Spiritbinder in Mogu'shan Vaults on Normal or Heroic difficulty.
  • Overzealous New: Defeat Imperial Vizier Zor'lok while every member of the raid is afflicted with the Zealous Parasite debuff.
  • Timing is Everything New: Defeat two Empyreal Generals within 10 seconds of each other, and then defeat Grand Empress Shek'zeer in Heart of Fear on Normal or Heroic difficulty.
  • Who's Got Two Green Thumbs? New: Win the Tsulong encounter while keeping the Enchanted Plant alive.

Feats of Strength

Dungeon Challenges

Dungeons & Raids

Exploration

Pandaria

Temple of Kotmogu
  • Blackout New: Kill 100 enemies that are holding an Orb of Power.
  • Can't Stop Won't Stop New: Kill 100 enemies while holding an Orb of Power.
  • Four Square New: Hold all four Orbs of Power at least once in a single Temple of Kotmogu battle.
  • I've Got the Power New: Win Temple of Kotmogu while controlling all 4 Orbs of Power.
  • Master of Temple of Kotmogu New: Complete the Temple of Kotmogu achievements listed below.
  • Powerball New: Hold an Orb of Power in the center of the Temple of Kotmogu for 90 seconds.
  • Temple of Kotmogu All-Star New: Hold four Orbs of Power and kill four enemies who are holding an Orb of Power in a single Temple of Kotmogu match.
  • Victory is Mine! New: Earn 8,000 Victory Points for your team in Temple of Kotmogu.

Pandaria Dungeon
  • And Stay Dead! New: Allow High Inquisitor Whitemane to cast Mass Resurrection, defeat all revived Scarlet Judicators, and then defeat Whitemane in Scarlet Monastery on Heroic Difficulty.
  • Burning Man New: Cause Brother Korloff to light nearby training dummies on fire in Scarlet Monastery on Heroic Difficulty. [NYI/PH]
  • Empowered Spiritualneur New: Defeat Thalnos the Soulrender while three Empowered Zombies are alive.
  • Mantid Swarm New: Defeat Raigonn without killing any of the Mantid reinforcements.

Scenarios

Rated Battleground



Spell Changes
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
Cooking Specializations

Tailoring
  • Darkglow Embroidery - Embroiders a magical pattern into your cloak, giving you a chance to increase your Spirit by 250 for 15 sec when you cast a spell.
    • This recipe automatically improves when you reach 500 skill in Tailoring.
  • Darkglow Embroidery - Embroiders a magical pattern into your cloak, giving you a chance to increase your Spirit by 580 for 15 sec when you cast a spell.
    • This recipe automatically improves when you reach 550 skill in Tailoring.
  • Darkglow Embroidery - Embroiders a magical pattern into your cloak, giving you a chance to increase your Spirit by 2,500 for 15 sec when you cast a spell.
  • Lightweave Embroidery - Embroiders a subtle pattern of light into your cloak, giving you a chance to increase your Intellect by 295 for 15 sec when casting a spell.
    • This recipe automatically improves when you reach 500 skill in Tailoring.
  • Lightweave Embroidery - Embroiders a subtle pattern of light into your cloak, giving you a chance to increase your Intellect by 580 for 15 sec when casting a spell.
    • This recipe automatically improves when you reach 550 skill in Tailoring.
  • Lightweave Embroidery - Embroiders a subtle pattern of light into your cloak, giving you a chance to increase your Intellect by 2,500 for 15 sec when casting a spell.
  • Master's Spellthread - Permanently embroiders your pants with master's spellthread, increasing spell power by 50 and Stamina by 30.
    • This recipe automatically improves when you reach 500 skill in Tailoring.
  • Master's Spellthread - Permanently embroiders your pants with master's spellthread, increasing Intellect by 95 and Stamina by 80.
    • This recipe automatically improves when you reach 550 skill in Tailoring.
  • Master's Spellthread - Permanently embroiders your pants with master's spellthread, increasing Intellect by 285 and critical strike by 165.
  • Sanctified Spellthread - Permanently embroiders your pants with sanctified spellthread, increasing spell power by 50 and Spirit by 20.
    • This recipe automatically improves when you reach 500 skill in Tailoring.
  • Sanctified Spellthread - Permanently embroiders your pants with sanctified spellthread, increasing Intellect by 95 and Spirit by 55.
    • This recipe automatically improves when you reach 550 skill in Tailoring.
  • Sanctified Spellthread - Permanently embroiders your pants with sanctified spellthread, increasing Intellect by 285 and Spirit by 165.
  • Swordguard Embroidery - Embroiders a magical pattern into your cloak, causing your damaging melee and ranged attacks to sometimes increase your attack power by 400 for 15 sec.
    • This recipe automatically improves when you reach 500 skill in Tailoring.
  • Swordguard Embroidery - Embroiders a magical pattern into your cloak, causing your damaging melee and ranged attacks to sometimes increase your attack power by 1,000 for 15 sec.
    • This recipe automatically improves when you reach 550 skill in Tailoring.
  • Swordguard Embroidery - Embroiders a magical pattern into your cloak, causing your damaging melee and ranged attacks to sometimes increase your attack power by 8,000 for 15 sec.

Druid (Forums)
  • Faerie Fire can no longer be cast in Travel Form or Aquatic Form.
  • Hurricane now costs 50.3% of Base Mana, down from 75.5% of Base Mana.
  • Moonfire base damage has been increased by 11%.
  • Symbiosis can no longer be cast in Travel Form or Aquatic Form.
  • Ursol's Vortex now has a 20 yards range. (Bug Fix)

Talents
  • Heart of the Wild can no longer be cast in Travel Form or Aquatic Form. Wording clarified, the 6% Agility and Intellect bonus applies at all times.
  • Nature's Vigil now only affect single-target healing and damage spells.

Balance

Restoration
  • Ironbark now can't be cast in Travel Form, Aquatic Form, Flight Form, Epic, Flight Form
  • Nature's Cure can no longer be cast in Travel Form or Aquatic Form.

Hunter (Forums)
  • Fetch now has a 50 yards range, up from 20 yards.

Mage (Forums)

Talents
  • Incanter's Ward now restores up to 18% of your maximum mana, up from 15%. Now grants you 36% increased spell power when the effect ends, up from 30%. Now passively increases spell power by 10%, up from 8%. Now increases mana regeneration by 65% instead of regenerating 1% mana every 2 sec.

Fire
  • Combustion - When cast, resets the cooldown of your Inferno Blast ability.

Minor Glyph

Monk (Forums)

Mistweaver
  • Life Cocoon now lasts 12 sec. (Tooltip clarification)
  • Summon Jade Serpent Statue Serpent's Salve (On-Click Effect) is now Serpent's Accord (Passive) - When you cast Soothing Mist, the Jade Serpent Statue will also cast Soothing Mist on an injured ally within 40 yards.

Major Glyphs
  • Glyph of Afterlife - Increases the chance to summon a Healing Sphere when you kill an enemy while gaining experience or honor by 25%.
  • Glyph of Crackling Jade Lightning - Your Crackling Jade Lightning knocks the target back a further distance, and after being knocked back increases the damage the target takes from your Crackling Jade Lightning by 25% for 8 sec.
  • Glyph of Fists of Fury - When channeling Fists of Fury, you parry all attacks.
  • Glyph of Sparring - While Sparring, you also have a 5% chance to also Deflect spells from attackers in front of you, stacking up 3 times.
  • Glyph of Touch of Karma - Your Touch of Karma now has a 20 yard range.
  • Glyph of Uplift - Your Uplift no longer increases the duration of your Renewing Mist on targets, but heals for 50% more.

Minor Glyphs

Paladin (Forums)
  • Crusader's Zeal now has a chance to increase your critical strike chance by 3% for 9 secs instead of increasing your attack speed. Stacks up to 3 times.
  • Divine Storm now deals 120% weapon damage, up from 60%.

Priest (Forums)

Talents
  • Divine Insight shadow effect modified - Periodic damage from your Shadow Word: Pain has a 15% chance to reset the cooldown on Mind Blast and cause your next Mind Blast within 12 sec to be instant cast.
  • From Darkness, Comes Light Surge of Darkness has been reworked - Periodic damage from your Vampiric Touch has a 15% chance to cause your next Mind Spike to not consume your damage-over-time effects.

Shadow
  • Devouring Plague now scales from 16.6% of Spell Power, down from 50% of spell power.
  • Mind Surge (NNF) has been reworked - Reduces the cooldown of your Mind Blast based on your Haste.

Major Glyphs
  • Glyph of Devouring Plague might be increased to 33%, up from 10%. The change isn't in the tooltip but is in the spell effect.

Warlock (Forums)
Demonology

Affliction
  • Seed of Corruption now costs 6% of Base mana, down from 8% of base mana. Damage has been increased by 100%. Now scales from 120% of Spell Power, up from 60% of Spell Power.

Destruction
  • Shadowburn now restores 15% of your total mana after 5 sec if the target doesn't die.

Warrior (Forums)
  • Battle Stance - Generates high Rage from normal melee attacks.
  • Berserker Rage - wording changed to "increasing the rage you generate from attacks" instead of "normal melee attacks".
  • Berserker Stance - Generates some Rage from normal melee attacks and some Rage from damage taken.
  • Disarm - Disarmed creatures deal significantly reduced damage.
  • Enrage - Area attacks have a smaller chance to cause Enrage.

Talents
  • Piercing Howl now has a 15 yards radius, up from 10 yards.
  • Second Wind life regeneration effect now procs whenever you are below 35% health.

Protection
  • Revenge can no longer be used after a block. Generates 10 Rage.
  • Shield Barrier base cost is now 20 Rage, down from 60 Rage. Consumes up to 60 Rage to increase the amount absorbed. Now scales from 3300% of Attack Power, down from 10000% of Attack Power.
  • Shield Block can now be used twice within 15 sec.
  • Sword and Board now procs from Devastate instead of Revenge. Now increases the Rage that Shield Slam generates by 5, down from 10.
  • Unwavering Sentinel no longer grants you 1 Rage every 3 seconds while in combat.

Arms

Fury
  • Bloodthirst now has a 4.5 sec cooldown, down from 6 sec. The chance for Bloodthirst to be a critical strike noz increases by 10% until it achieves a critical strike. Now generates 5 Rage, down from 10 Rage.

Major Glyphs



Client Strings
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
  • BATTLENET_BROADCAST - Broadcast
  • BATTLE_PET_CAPTURED - You have captured
  • BATTLE_PET_CAPTURED_ICON_LINK - You have captured |T%s:0|t|Hbattlepet|h[%s]|h!
  • BATTLE_PET_CAPTURED_LINK - You have captured |Hbattlepet|h[%s]|h!
  • BATTLE_TAG_ID_PROMPT - 0000
  • BATTLE_TAG_PROMPT - BattleTag
  • BATTLE_TAG_REQUEST - Send a |cff82c5ffBattleTag|r Request to:
  • BATTLE_TAG_REQUEST_INFO - They will be added to your friends list when they accept your friend request
  • BATTLE_TAG_SYMBOL - #
  • CHARACTER_NAME_PROMPT - Character Name
  • ERR_PVP_MAP_NOT_SET - Failed to blacklist PvP map.
  • ITEM_UPGRADE - Item Upgrade
  • ITEM_UPGRADE_DESCRIPTION - Use your valor points to upgrade a weapon or piece of armor that is level 375 or higher.
  • OPTION_TOOLTIP_SSAO - Controls the rendering quality of the ambient occlusion effect. Decreasing this may greatly improve performance.
  • PALADIN_PROT_CORE_ABILITY_6 - Use when you have 3 Holy Power for damage and defense and to improve your Word of Glory.
  • PET_BATTLE_RESULT_LOSE - Battle finished
  • PET_BATTLE_RESULT_WIN - You Won!
  • PET_BATTLE_START - Battle!
  • TALENT_FRAME_HELP_2 - You willl unlock more talent rows as you gain levels. You can always unlearn them at your class trainer.
  • UNLEARN_AT_YOUR_TRAINER - You can always unlearn at your trainer.
  • UPGRADE - Upgrade
  • UPGRADE_MISSING_ITEM - Drag an item here to upgrade it.
  • WHAT_HAS_CHANGED_HELP_1 - This is a quick overview of what has changed for your class.
  • WHC_DK_2 - Death Knights are now less overpowered.
  • WHC_DRUID_2 - A fourth, tanking specialization exists called Guardian.
  • WHC_HUNTER_2 - Ranged weapons no longer have a minimum range.
  • WHC_HUNTER_3 - You now equip either a ranged weapon or a melee weapon. As a hunter, you usually want the ranged weapon.
  • WHC_HUNTER_4 - You can now choose the specialization of your pet: Ferocity, Tenacity or Cunning.
  • WHC_MAGE_2 - Arcane has a new resource, [Arcane Charges]
  • WHC_MAGE_3 - Mage specializations no longer get a bonus to Arcane, Fire or Frost damage. Use whatever spell is appropriate.
  • WHC_MAGE_4 - Wands are now held in the main hand as alternative to weapons such as daggers.
  • WHC_MONK_1 - The monk is a new class. Monks can fill tanking, healing or melee damage roles. Most races can be monks.
  • WHC_PALADIN_2 - Auras no longer exist. Seals are now on the aura bar.
  • WHC_PRIEST_2 - [Chakra] can be cast directly and no longer requires a triggering spell.
  • WHC_PRIEST_3 - [Shadow Orbs] are now consumed by [Devouring Plague]
  • WHC_PRIEST_4 - Wands are now held in the main hand as alternative to weapons such as daggers.
  • WHC_ROGUE_2 - Poisons are now in the Spell Book. You can have one damage and one utility poison.
  • WHC_SHAMAN_2 - Totems no longer provide long-term buffs. All totems have short-term, situational benefits.
  • WHC_TITLE_DK_2 - QQ
  • WHC_TITLE_DRUID_2 - Bears
  • WHC_TITLE_HUNTER_2 - Range
  • WHC_TITLE_HUNTER_3 - Weapons
  • WHC_TITLE_HUNTER_4 - Pets
  • WHC_TITLE_MAGE_2 - Arcane
  • WHC_TITLE_MAGE_3 - Magic Damage
  • WHC_TITLE_MAGE_4 - Wands
  • WHC_TITLE_MONK_1 - New Hotness
  • WHC_TITLE_PALADIN_2 - Auras
  • WHC_TITLE_PRIEST_2 - Chakra
  • WHC_TITLE_PRIEST_3 - Shadow
  • WHC_TITLE_PRIEST_4 - Wands
  • WHC_TITLE_ROGUE_2 - Poisons
  • WHC_TITLE_SHAMAN_2 - Totems
  • WHC_TITLE_WARLOCK_2 - Demonology
  • WHC_TITLE_WARLOCK_3 - Destruction
  • WHC_TITLE_WARLOCK_4 - Wands
  • WHC_TITLE_WARRIOR_1 - Talents
  • WHC_TITLE_WARRIOR_2 - Stances
  • WHC_TITLE_WARRIOR_3 - Rage
  • WHC_TITLE_WARRIOR_4 - Rend
  • WHC_WARLOCK_2 - Demonology has a new resource, [Demonic Fury]
  • WHC_WARLOCK_3 - Destruction has a new resource, [Burning Embers]
  • WHC_WARLOCK_4 - Wands are now held in the main hand as alternative to weapons such as daggers.
  • WHC_WARRIOR_3 - Rage generation has changed. Rage is generated by some special attacks and consumed by others. Only use [Heroic Strike]|h|r when you have more Rage than you can spend.
  • WHC_WARRIOR_4 - Rend is now called [Deep Wounds]. It is automatically applied so it won't appear in your spell book.
by Published on 2012-05-10 05:49 AM

Diablo 3 - Diablo III Cinematic Screenshots, Results Conference Call, "One of the Chosen", Blue Posts

Mage Tier 14
The new video preview should be fairly representative of the set you will see in the final version of the game!





Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Account-Wide Reputation
We don’t want to make reputation account-wide. We think that removes too much of the gameplay of having an alt. Harkening back to the blog, the goal is for players to feel free to play their alts. If you have a cool mount on character A, then that might be an issue. Being exalted on character A so that enchants are easier to buy doesn’t seem like the same issue. (What I mean is, it’s a short step from there to saying character A has better gear so you aren’t going to play B).

We can understand where the desire to have reputations function in this way stems from, however. For this reason faction rep is going to work a little differently in Mists of Pandaria and, we think, will feel better for players with multiple characters.

For all intents and purposes, assume that the game doesn't really understand the concept of a WoW license. The account-level achievement system will all be based on the Battle.net account and not each individual WoW license attached to it.

Will this affect reputations associated with mounts?
The best answer right now is we're not sure. We're still discussing some of these details and honestly haven't drawn final conclusions as of yet. So just keep that in mind as you read on.

For Ramkahen, you'll probably just need to buy the mount once by gaining the necessary reputation on one character, in order to unlock it for all characters on your Battle.net account. The challenge comes with the city mounts. If I have a dwarf today, I have to get Exalted Darnassus to buy a nightsaber. But if the nightsabers become account level, then I should probably just make a night elf rather than grind exalted on the dwarf. If that doesn't feel right, we could "fix it" by making the city mounts non-account level. Or we could let them be account level, but make you require the appropriate reputation to use them. If we did THAT, then it might make sense for all faction mounts to require a rep.

But again, the simple answer is we’re not sure yet. I left out your question about reputation-based titles because we don't have an answer as of yet. I guess you could say that also falls within the "we're not sure" category at this stage.(Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Account-Wide Achievements
Let’s consider Loremaster of Kalimdor.

  • Character A completes Ashenvale Quests for a toast and 10 points.
  • If Character B then completes Ashenvale Quests, they will get the toast, but not 10 more points. (It is NOT a new achievement for the account.)
  • If Character B then completes Felwood Quests, he gets a toast and 10 points. (It is a new achievement for the account.)
  • If Character A never completes Felwood Quests, he will not get a toast, but the achievement will show that the account has the achievement. (It is NOT a new achievement for the account.)
  • Loremaster of Kalimdor is a meta achievement, so it is account only. If we assume that Character A complete half of the Kalimdor quest achievements and Character B completes the other half, then Loremaster of Kalimdor will give a toast for whichever character is logged on at the time. The account will get 10 points.
  • Any new characters will continue to get toasts (but not points) for doing Felwood Quests or whatever, but . No character on that account will ever see a toast for Loremaster of Kalimdor again.

This sounds more confusing than it is. In the Achiement UI, you will see normal achievements (which are now shared) and account-only achievements, which use a different color and symbol to indicate that you can only get them once. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Mage (Forums)
Wizardry Missing
I looked through my spellbook for this guy and a premade and neither have the 5% int bonus, but my priest and lock still have theirs.
Just a bug. It will be back. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Priest (Forums)
Priest Feedback
Heals cast during Spirit Shell should benefit from Grace. Mastery affects the bubbles. We built Divine Aegis into the effect by making the bubbles scale with your crit chance.

It sounds like your PoH Spirit Shells are low, but you are often operating a few builds behind us.

Shields are generally smaller than equivalent heals, since there is much less risk of overhealing and the absorbs always go away first. That's just a general tuning philosophy and not a die-hard rule. Shields have disadvantages too (such as at some point you need to get targets back up to a safe health level).

Again, don't focus on the numbers. It's fine to bring up the numbers if they seem off, but don't let simple balance adjustments get in the way of evaluating whether or not you think the mechanic is fun. I know that is hard sometimes with healing, since efficiency and throughput dictate so many decisions.

The beginning of MoP Beta: "We want Discipline to feel different, so we're removing several of the heals you have become accustomed to using over the years and replacing them with absorb mechanics."

Currently in the MoP Beta: "We don't want Discipline feeling TOO different so here's all your old heals back. Oh, and Spirit Shell is now a semi-useful-in-certain-situations cooldown. Enjoy."

We usually start out more bold and refine things as we go along, which often means going to a known fallback position. That direction makes more sense than starting off cautiously and getting more reckless as we get closer to ship.

...what does "making the bubbles scale with your crit chance" mean?
If your chance to crit is 20%, your bubbles are 20% stronger. If your chance to crit is 100%, you get double bubbles.

For Divine Aegis, the heals are 30% times your crit chance, except for PoH which is just +30%.

Logically, I understand this, but in practice... it's a bit more difficult since sometimes the numbers DO define the fun, or at least what some people think of as fun.
Yep, we get that. When understanding the target numbers is key to understanding how you'd use the spell, we try to get things in the ballpark. On the other hand, it's not a good use of development time to balance a mechanic if we ultimately (and sometimes quickly) remove it. We could have spent many more hours balancing the previous version of Spirit Shell, which we ended up scrapping. Everyone in this business very quickly gets used to "wasted" design time like that, but it's better for the project as a whole if we spend our polish time once everything has stabilized a bit more.

If the numbers go up to something reasonable, then it becomes intensely fun again because it gives a choice. Is there about to be a ton of aoe coming in? Pre-shield. Is there only some aoe coming in? PoH. If I chcoose wrong.. if I pre-shield and it is a little damage.. I wasted absorbs. If I choose not to shield and it is a lot of damage, then I tax myself (and the other healer) trying to get everyone back up. Having options and needing to know when each particular option is the right thing to do is what is fun for me.
That's the intent. Also, because it's not a very long cooldown, you're not overly punished for making the wrong call. It will be back soon enough.

That said, GC, can we get more clarity to the dev team's vision of the mechanic-- specifically how it's meant to stack on itself and refresh?
We're not sure yet. Stacking sometimes leads to behavior where you feel like you have to spam something over and over to the max stack. We wouldn't want Spirit Shell to only be used on a tank for instance. That may not happen, but the mechanic is still in it's toddler stages, so we need to evaluate it some more. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Rogue (Forums)
Rogue feedback/explanation
As I stated this thread is NOT meant to rant on about things I find wrong. I am merely asking for an explanation as to WHY some of these changes have happened. Usually when they make this types of changes I can get a sense as to what caused it/the reasoning behind them even if I think they are wrong.
Totally fair and reasonable. I'll handle some of these. Please be understanding that I am one guy and I have a day job. It's not realistic for me spend equal amounts of time on every class thread every day. We read all of these posts though, because reading is much faster than responding.

1) Sang Vein change to exclude hemo: Currently this SUB ONLY buff excluded hemo….which is SUB's REPLACEMENT for SS. I find it very odd that a spec specific buff would exclude the only spec specific bleed it has.
Honor Among Thieves generates a lot of combo points, so we think having multiple finishers is appropriate, so we want Rupture to be used in the rotation. Sang Vein being used only on Hemo, while convenient, meant Rupture could be skipped over easily. We understand that this has PvP ramifications and we're prepared to buff if necessary, which in this case I think is likely. Note that it is much harder for us to predict PvP damage compared to PvE damage, so it requires a lot more testing and player feedback. (Also note that most classes do have a significant gap between PvE and PvP damage, and that's fine.) We agree that Rupture would feel better as a button to push if it rewarded you with better damage. That's something we're looking at.

2) Hemo DoT buffed: Now don’t get me wrong, I welcome any damage buff….but buffing a DoT (on a skill you recently excluded from SV no less)?
We buffed all of Hemo, not just the DoT. This is partial compensation for the above change, but as I said above, probably not enough compensation for PvP yet.

Hemo is like Mangle -- it's the button you're supposed to use in PvE when you can't get behind the target. It's a dps loss, but not a huge one. It's a minor DPS increase in PvE to use both Backstab and Hemo at the same time, but we'd prefer that to be a niche strategy.

Venomous Wounds not procing on both Garrote and Rupt when both are up.
This was all part of a suite of changes to discourage the use of Vanish (and Prep) as DPS cooldowns. We generally want utility / survival cooldowns to get used for that. It sort of sucks when you are asked to give up your survivability button in order to max DPS. (Yes Shadow Focus still gives a slight DPS increase for using Vanish, but we can live with that.)

Para/Leeching poison mutually exclusive.
It will probably be unlikely for very optimized players to take both poisons. We think they are appropriate in each of their talent tiers though and you have other choices to take in both cases. This seems like it’s on the level of someone who chooses an AE talent for a single target fight.

Versatility: This talent..well has some issues I think.
We don’t want cps on the rogue. That’s not the design. The rogue builds up attacks against a target. We understand though that sometimes the build up can be overly restrictive, which is why we have cooldowns like Redirect, and we understand some players love rogues but just can’t stand the cp target switching limitation. Versatility is for them.

The level 90 tier for rogues is supposed to feel like it breaks the rules (you know, within reason). Shuriken gives a ranged attack to a melee class. Versatility overcomes the rule that cps are on the target. Anticipation overcomes the rule that there are 5 cps.

HaT not proccing unless in combat: First it was not proccing in stealth, then you change it to not proccing out of combat at all. Again I ask…why? What was the purpose here?
First, we don't like players to have to live with burden of building up something before a fight starts. It may be a DPS increase, but it's not a fun one. More specifically though, we didn't want Anticipation and HaT to build up 10 cps before the fight even begins. Obviously, I hope, that just couldn't fly.

And what of Find Weakness? And Find Weakness's synergy with Preparation? Those alone, at least for Subtlety, introduces the concept of a mandatory talent.
It's fair to say that Prep is going to be more of a dps increase for Sub than the other two specs. Still, there are also fights (in PvE) where the other two talents are just as useful. We're still considering ways to solve that issue though without nerfing the cool aspects of Prep.

To speak nothing of the Shadow Walk glyph in PvP, which will be another forced requirement, since all Rogues will be working under the competitive expectation of squaring off like that.
We understand the concern, but we're not convinced -- yet -- that it will be a problem. Shadow Walk is up such a brief period of time, and you're giving up a whole glyph slot for that brief theoretical "double stealth" encounter against another rogue. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Rogue Feedback
It's a wording change, because the dodge chance now applies to shots as well as melee attacks. If anything, it's a buff, now you have 50% against range attacks.
This is correct. I will say that I am totally in favor of complete hyposcrisy from one day to the next (the thread title), just so you can quote me on it from now on. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Warlock (Forums)
Glyph of Fel Regeneration
We were a little worried about whether we could balance the glyph for both Destro and Demo with models that supported both mana and fel energy. Can you elaborate on what you liked about it? (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Glyph of Lifetap Stealth Nerf
"Stealth nerf" typically refers to changes we deploy on live without telling anyone. To be honest, we don't really do these any longer because players quickly figure them out anyway. Since we barely document any of the thousands of changes going into each beta build, I'm not sure the term applies here.

Regardless, the intent of the glyph was never to let you opt out of the cost of Life Tap. It was intended to let you stay at full health and defer the cost. If you used 4 Life Taps without the glyph, it would cost 4x the health cost. It stands to reason that if you used 4 Life Taps with the glyph that paying 1x the health cost would make the glyph very good. It was just a bug fix to do what the glyph always claimed it did. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Warrior (Forums)
Warrior Feedback
For Arms, I want Rend back. And Taste for Blood using Rend. And both of those scaling from Haste.

As a PvPer I don't want rend back. That move was a waste of a GCD and i'm glad its gone.

Right. That's the problem with Rend. We removed it because so many players didn't like it. Some players might like it's return, but for others, we'd be moving backwards. The same is true of cast-time Slam. Plenty of warriors are happy to see it gone.

Enrage would matter more if RB didn't cost rage, but generated it. The ability would be different from BT in that it would still have a cd and still hit hard. Now enrage would grant increased rage gen AND an ability that increased rage/did lots of damage. Frenzied Berserker achieved.
The risk there is you become *even more* dependent on Enrage. Now not only does it provide more autoattack rage, and is your mastery and Raging Blow enabler, but you get extra rage from using Raging Blow.

If you can let Bloodthirst have a decent base bonus to crit it would help with giving us a decent amount of up time on enrage and the use of raging blow for lower levels.
We had that in for a short time, but thought that the newer implementation (where an Enrage becomes increasing more likely) made things smoother overall. Even a high crit chance can still not crit.

Not generating rage in Defensive Stance hurts DPS warriors as well.
That doesn't have to be the case. Defensive Stance has always been a last resort for DPS warriors because it lowers your DPS. It's just a matter of degree. In other words, we're not trying to make Defensive Stance something Arms and Fury want to spend much time in.

I'm not sure if Ultimatum is gone, or if Devastate procs SnB and Ultimatum.
At the moment Ultimatum is from Shield Slam, because Devasate lighting up two buttons was too much.

Before I forget: a parried Rend is an annoyance. Under the new Taste for Blood, a parried Mortal strike means you're SoL for six seconds.
Taste for Blood is applied from using Mortal Strike, not landing a Mortal Strike. This may be a recent change.

On the other hand, there's a lot of damage that won't be affected by this, assuming that it puts a debuff on the target. For instance, the damage from Grasping Tendrils on spine wouldn't be affected. Most of the adds on Zon'ozz would be out of range. If you messed up Alysrazor, it wouldn't reduce Lava Spew.
It's only 20% damage reduction. If you're concerned about missing some adds on Zon'ozz, use Rallying Cry or Shield Wall or have a healer blow a cooldown or all three. It's not critical that all tank cooldowns work the same way, as long as nobody is at a terrible disadvantage. Applying the right cooldown to the right situation is one of the marks of a skilled tank.

They both have a 10 rage generating attack on a 6 sec CD, which sets the timeframe everything falls in.
Yeah, I agree the 6 sec cooldown makes them feel similar. I don't think we'd be excited about a 3 sec Bloodthirst again, but a 4.5 might be worth trying.

Fury currently needs obscene levels of Crit, Hit, and of course Expertise just to function normally. This leaves no room for Haste or Mastery. We have far less choice in our gear due to this problem.
You are defining "normally" differently than we do. Fury isn't balanced around 100% uptime of Raging Blow. Swinging two weapons is a huge dps increase that is offset partially by missing more, which means having to dedicate more stats to hit and expertise. I don't see the fundamental flaw there as long as Fury's damage is about the same as Arms. You may not like the randomness personally, but we do give you ways to mitigate it (including just playing Arms).

If you try to fix this by increasing Enrage up-time, where does it stop? 70%? 80%? 90%? 100%? If we become capable of 100% up-time, what's the point of Enrage as it currently is?
Off the top of my head, Enrage uptime of 40% in starting gear and 80% in endgame gear is probably a good target. Once something approaches 100%, then whenever you don't get it, it feels like a penalty rather than it feeling like a bonus when you do.

Does anyone actually notice when Flurry is up? Anyone? It's completely random, and with how low Haste is in terms of stats we're capable of valuing, we'll never have any discernible control over it through gearing.
The intent of Flurry is to break up the steady swings of autoattacks, particulary to make Rage income less predictable (which then in turn asks you to manage that situation by deciding when to Wild Strike and / or Heroic Strike). If the effect is too subtle to notice or Fury has enough mechanics going on without it, then we could consider removing it. It has just always been one of those iconic Fury mechanics. (Iconic is in the eye of the beholder of course, because we did kill Rend.)

Later in the thread, there were some suggestions to make Flurry a more meaningful proc that you react to. I'm not sure Fury needs more procs though since it already has Raging Blow and Bloodsurge. Something like Deadly Clam (see below) breaks up the rotation in a more predictable way.

Bring back Deadly Calm in some way for both Fury and Arms.
The class designers have discussed Deadly Calm quite a bit. It's an interesting ability and it changes the rotation in a way Recklessness does not. The problem is that with Recklessness and a cooldown on the level 90 tier (especially Avatar), that's a lot of burst buttons for warriors to use. We could prevent them from being stacked, but that often doesn't feel good. We could give Deadly Calm to Arms and Recklessness to Fury, but I don't think that would go over well.

Strength needs to provide Crit. I've already went over why your argument against this fails - Intellect and Agility are already pretty much the same thing (SP = AP, both provide Crit). Regardless, it's just not fun to not Crit.
I did address this. We just disagree. If you like crit, stack crit. If you like a lot of passive crit, play a rogue. Apologies if that sounds cut and dried, but I'm not sure where else to take that discussion.

I'm going to go ahead and strongly disagree with Fury's design being so attached to this idea of being "random" or "uncontrolled" (which is the synonym you're using for random). As I've said frequently, a little RNG is fine, but you have to know when it's too much.
Randomness is also in the eye of the beholder. We like to have a pretty high amount of randomness in class rotations because handling that randomness presents an opportunity for reactive players to perform better than those who try to play their class with a 1,2,3 cadence. You seem to have a different vision in mind for Fury than we do. I'm not sure how to resolve that. And no, it's not going to be a poll.

We did find a bug just now where the combat tables were not exporting correctly. Among other things, this means that warriors, paladins and DKs were lacking 5% of base crit. I was trying to figure out why the crit numbers being reported were so low. (They still may not be as high as you'd like with the +5%, but they should be where we want them.)

Here are some upcoming changes to Arms and Fury:

  • Bloodthirst has a 4.5 sec cooldown and generates 5 rage to distance the Fury rotation more from Arms. Bloodthirst’s crit mechanic was redesigned so that you can see the crit chance of your next BT and predict the crit / Enrage a little more.
  • Colossus Smash is free. We hope this lets warriors time their rage pooling a bit more instead of spending so much rage on CS that there is nothing left to benefit from CS. Since Arms uses CS more, this will throw more kinks (the good kind) in their rotation than Fury.
  • Deadly Calm reinstated as a 60 sec cooldown. It allows the next 3 Heroic Strike or Cleaves to cost 10 less rage, so again you’ll want to time this a bit depending on current rage mechanics. Ten less rage should be the sweet spot to encourage HS use, but it may need to be 20. We don't want it to be free, because then you would just hit Deadly Calm on cooldown rather than timing it.
  • Enrage now also increases the rage generated by MS, BT, SS and Revenge. This should make the rage income more noticeable when it’s up.
  • Overpower now does more damage with subsequent procs. It was already a high priority button, but this will give warriors an opportunity to time the bigger hits with Colossus Smash or Deadly Calm..

As always, let us know how these feel in beta. These are very much experiments (as are many of our beta changes) so we may decide not all of these changes are good or necessary. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

TCG Art Update
The Trading Card Game art gallery has been updated to feature ten new pieces.


by Published on 2012-05-09 08:36 PM

WoW Stable at 10.2 Million Subscribers
Activision Blizzard's press release states that World of Warcraft is still at 10.2 million subscribers as of 3/31/12. This is the same amount of subscribers from Q4 2011. A few other interesting points:

  • Battle.Net has 10 million users.
  • 1.2 million people bought the Annual Pass.
  • 2 million people played the Diablo 3 open beta.
  • Pre-orders for Diablo 3 have set a new record for Blizzard. This number includes units pre-ordered as part of the Annual Pass promotion, as well as retail and digital pre-orders.
  • Blizzard renewed their license with NetEase for the distribution of World of Warcraft in mainland China, and it will continue for an additional three years following the expiration of the current license agreement.

by Published on 2012-05-09 03:29 AM

Pandaren Dances
Tonight's beta patch finally brought us the Pandaren dances!




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