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by Published on 2011-10-22 04:48 PM

Blizzcon Schedule

Note: all times are converted to the timezone your computer is currently in.

Thanks to Thoorium, Dinnerbone and Marlamin for putting these together!

Blizzcon 2011 - Live Raid ... Live!
It seems that this year's live raid is also available through conventional streaming by other players in the raid! vodka and Blood Legion will try to survive whatever Gamemasters decide to throw at them!


  • This is a competition between vodka and Blood Legion.
  • This is a modified version of Firelands with no trash, the first guild to take down Ragnaros wins.
  • The feed below is from Blood Legion, for a stream of both guilds with a nice tracking of the progression you will have to head to the official blizzcon live stream

Live Raid is over, congratulations to Blood Legion for killing Ragnaros first!
by Published on 2011-10-22 05:47 AM

Mists of Pandaria - Blizzcon 2011 Day 1 Recap
It's been a very long day for all of us and I have to admit that this is pretty impressive for a first announcement. Blizzard didn't just come with a bunch of concepts, a lot of that stuff is already done and it's pretty encouraging for a potential beta/release date.

It's time for a recap of what happened yesterday, and a couple of new high resolution screenshots + artworks from the press kit, along with a FAQ!

Official Website

Blizzcon 2011 - Day 1 Panels

Blizzcon 2011 - Day 1 Panels (Official Blue Posts)

Videos

Diablo 3

New Talents Recap (In Development, will change)




Press Kit Screenshots







Press Kit Concept Arts




Mists of Pandaria FAQ
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Q: What is the story of World of Warcraft®: Mists of Pandaria™?

Alliance warships prowl the seas. Horde armies thunder across Kalimdor. Tensions between these factions edge closer to erupting in a savage war that threatens to consume all of Azeroth. Against this backdrop of impending conflict, an uncharted island mysteriously appears....
Shrouded in fog since the world was sundered more than ten thousand years ago, the ancient realm of Pandaria has remained unspoiled by war. Its lush forests and cloud-ringed mountains are home to a complex ecosystem of indigenous races and exotic creatures -- including the enigmatic pandaren.
All but the bravest pandaren explorers have been hidden from the world for thousands of years. Now, in the aftermath of the events of World of Warcraft®: Cataclysm™, Pandaria's heroes are stepping forward to declare their allegiance to either the Alliance or the Horde and share the extraordinary secrets of their ancient martial arts with the world.
Q: Who are the pandaren?

The pandaren are an enigmatic race native to the long-hidden continent of Pandaria. Honorable and filled with a love of good company, good food -- and every now and then, a good friendly brawl -- the pandaren have been content to live in seclusion, allowing their culture to flourish and thrive away from the influence of the outside world. However, every now and then, a pandaren is born with a thirst for adventure that rivals his or her thirst for a strong drink, and he or she strikes out to explore beyond Pandaria’s shores. One of the most famous such wanderers was the brewmaster Chen Stormstout, who set out to look for exotic ingredients for a special ale and wound up assisting the Horde during the events of Warcraft® III: The Frozen Throne®.

While the pandaren are predominantly a peace-loving race, their history is marked with turmoil and strife. After years of living under the oppressive rule of the cruel mogu, who banned the use of weapons as a means of control, the pandaren developed the martial arts that would become the hallmark of their monk caste and used their skills to free themselves from the mogu rule. Terrifying natural forces and strange indigenous enemies -- such as the voracious mantid, who emerge every few years to consume everything in their path -- have also had a hand in shaping pandaren culture over the centuries. Now, the pandaren way of life faces its biggest trial yet, as Horde and Alliance forces make landfall on Pandaria’s pristine shores....

Q: What are the features of World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria?

Some of the new features of World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria include:


  • New Playable Race -- Pandaren: Adventure through Azeroth as World of Warcraft's first neutral race and decide whether to side with the Alliance or the Horde.
  • New Playable Class -- Monk: Unlock the secrets of pandaren martial arts and do battle as a damage dealer, healer, or tank.
  • Level Cap Increased to 90: Learn potent new spells and abilities while exploring uncharted zones and taking on challenging new content.
  • New Zones: Explore the lush Jade Forest, treacherous Kun-Lai Summit, and other exotic areas of Pandaria designed for high-level characters, and uncover the mystery of the Wandering Isle.
  • Scenarios: Join up with some friends to achieve a common goal, such as mounting a defense against invading monsters, in a flexible new type of PvE challenge.
  • Dungeon “Challenge” Modes: Master the ultimate 5-player time trial and earn prestige rewards in a new dungeon mode that will put your resolve and coordination to the test.
  • Pet Battles: Challenge other players’ companion pets with your own collection in a new tactical mini-game, and find out who's king or queen of the pint-sized battlefield.
  • New Talent System: Customize your character to suit your play style with the newly overhauled and improved talent system.

Q: How are the pandaren a “neutral” race? At what point do you choose which faction to side with?

Pandaren who strike out to explore the world outside their homeland begin their journey on the Wandering Isle (a new starting zone for pandaren characters level 1 to 10), where they face a number of trials -- and meet with a number of characters from both the Alliance and the Horde -- before arriving in Kalimdor or the Eastern Kingdoms. Pandaren remain neutral through most of their Wandering Isle quests, but before they leave, players will need to make a decision whether to permanently side with the Alliance or the Horde. After that decision is made, the character will be treated just like any other member of their chosen faction in cities, on quests, and in character interactions. Choose wisely, because once your decision is made, it’s irreversible (except through the Faction Change service).

Q: What is the monk class? How does it differ from other classes in the game?

The monk is a martial arts expert who excels in close-quarters hand-to-hand combat, and can fill the role of a tank, damage-dealer, or healer, depending on a player’s chosen specialization. As with most classes in the game (with the exception of death knights), monks begin their journey at level 1.

Monks have a number of unique mechanics and resources that set them apart from other classes. For example, the class is being designed with a more active approach to combat than other classes; every kick and punch is performed with the press of a key, so they will not have a default auto-attack. In addition, monks build up “chi” through a combination of punches, kicks, and other basic martial arts moves, and then expend it to unleash powerful special moves, such as finishers or potent heals.

Q: Which races can be a monk?

Since coming into contact with members of the Horde and the Alliance, several of Pandaria’s masters have begun to teach their new allies the secrets of their ancient martial arts. Currently, every race except goblin and worgen can learn the ways of the monk.

Q: Which classes are available to a pandaren?

Currently, pandaren can choose to be hunters, mages, priests, rogues, shaman, warriors, and -- of course -- monks. Pandaren are not able to become death knights, druids, paladins, or warlocks.

Q: What end-game content will be available for players at level 90?

With World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, our focus was on rebuilding the old world and improving the level 1 to 60 experience for players -- and as a result, we didn’t end up creating a lot of new types of content for players to tackle once they had reached max level. One of our primary design goals for Mists of Pandaria is to give players a wider variety of content and different types of gameplay to enjoy once they reach level 90, in addition to the Heroic dungeons, raids, and daily quests that they’re used to. To that end, we are introducing three major new features in the new expansion: scenarios, challenge modes for 5-player dungeons, and companion pet battles.

Q: What are Scenarios?

Scenarios are a new type of PvE challenge designed for groups of as few as 3 or as many as 25 players, depending on what is appropriate for the content. Scenarios require players to band together to complete a specific goal, such as defending Goldshire against a gnoll attack or storming a beach near a Horde fortification. Each scenario will have its own set of unique objectives, and in general they will offer a different type of gameplay from the trash-and-boss design of 5-player dungeons.

Scenarios will allow for more flexible group compositions than dungeons do, so parties won’t necessarily need a specific number of tanks, healers, or damage-dealers (though exactly what’s required will vary by scenario). And while a scenario may take place in a familiar location within the game world, each scenario will be instanced. In general, expect a scenario to take anywhere between 10 to 30 minutes to complete.

Q: What are Challenge Modes for 5-player dungeons?

Challenge mode is a new, advanced mode for 5-player dungeons designed for players looking for the ultimate test of coordination and skill. In challenge modes, players are tasked with trying to complete an existing 5-player dungeon as quickly and skillfully as possible. Depending on how well the group does, players will receive recognizable prestige rewards such as mounts, pets, titles, achievements, or special armor artwork that can be used with transmogrification to customize a character’s appearance. The inspiration for challenge modes comes from events such as the 45-minute Baron Rivendare runs in the original Stratholme dungeon, or the timed Zul’Aman dungeon run for the Amani War Bear.

We want challenge modes to be a test of player skill and not of player gear, and so the stats on all players’ armor and equipment will be normalized to a set level upon beginning a challenge. As a result, players will have the same chance at victory whether they are wearing quest rewards or Heroic-raid-level epic items. Regardless of equipment, challenge modes will remain just as challenging at the end of the expansion as they were at the beginning.

Q: What are companion pet battles?

In Mists of Pandaria, we are adding a new tactical mini-game that will give the Snowshoe Rabbits, Mechanical Squirrels, and other cute lil’ companion pets players collect something to do other than stand around looking adorable.

Companion pet battles allow players to pit their pint-sized pals against other players’ pets (or against special critters you come across in the wild) in strategic, turn-based combat. Pets will level up as they earn combat experience, and each companion in the game will have its own set of stats – such as attack and defense rating – along with unique abilities with their own tactical merits. During a pet battle, players will be able to swap companions out strategically depending on which pet they’re facing or what abilities might come in handy against a given foe.

Pet battles are meant to be completely independent from your character’s main progression, and the rewards won’t offer additional advantages in regular PvP or PvE situations such as Battlegrounds or raids -- though they should help pass the time while you’re waiting for your group to recoup from a particularly nasty wipe.

Q: Are any changes in store for dungeons and raids?

As with the upcoming patch 4.3, Mists of Pandaria will include a third difficulty level for raids. Expect one difficulty to be roughly equivalent to the current normal mode, one to be about on par with the current Heroic mode, and one to be much more pick-up-group-friendly. Our goal is to allow more players to be able to experience the content -- especially the climactic boss encounters that are a part of each expansion’s story arc -- while still satisfying players looking for the most epic challenges and rewards.

Q: What’s in store for professions?

While we don’t plan to add any brand-new professions in Mists of Pandaria, the profession skill cap will be extended, and new recipes and content will become available for every existing profession.

Q: What are the new zones?

The continent of Pandaria will consist of five enormous zones for players level 85 and above, and new pandaren players will begin their adventures in a unique starting zone separate from the pandaren homeland. Here’s the breakdown of the zones, along with their current working names:

  • The Jade Forest: High-level adventurers will make landfall in the lush Jade Forest, where they’ll meet some of Pandaria’s indigenous races, such as the fish-like jinyu and monkey-like hozu.
  • Valley of the Four Winds: Playing home to both farms and rainforests, the Valley of the Four Winds is also where travelers will find the legendary Stormstout Brewery.
  • Kun-Lai Summit: Amid this treacherous mountain terrain, players will encounter the Shadowpan, a clandestine sect charged with keeping one of Pandaria’s darkest secrets.
  • Townlong Steppes: Here, a tremendous wall separates Pandaria’s verdant forests and plains from the desolate wasteland left in the wake of the ravenous, all-consuming mantid.
  • Vale of Eternal Blossoms: Adventurers from either faction are welcome to share a drink in the central city of the pandaren. This zone also hosts many daily quests for max-level characters.
  • The Wandering Isle: Pandaren adventurers looking to explore the world outside Pandaria begin their journey here, on a mysterious island that never seems to settle in the same place for too long.

Q: What changes are being made to the talent system?

We are making a couple of major changes to how class specializations and talents work in Mists of Pandaria. First, your specialization is now completely independent from your talent choices. When you reach level 10, you will still choose one of three specs (e.g. Discipline, Holy, or Shadow priest) to determine your role, play style, and which signature abilities your character has access to. In addition, you’ll receive more of your spec’s defining abilities as you level up.

Secondly, the talent system has been redesigned completely. At regular level intervals (at level 15, 30, 45, 60, 75, and 90), players will now be able to choose between one of three very powerful talents. All three specializations will have access to the same three talent options, and our goal is to make sure that these talent choices are appealing to all three specializations with no obvious “must-have” options for any of them. For example, level-15 warriors will be able to choose one of three movement-related talents: Juggernaut, which permanently lowers the cooldown of Charge; Double Time, which lets the warrior Charge twice before incurring a cooldown; or Warbringer, which causes the target to be rooted in place following a Charge. Once you choose a talent in a specific tier, the other two talents are locked out from your talent build, even when you reach the next talent tier. We want players to be able to change their talent build independently of their specialization, and without visiting a class trainer. This new system is designed to provide players with hundreds of distinct and meaningful options for tailoring their character’s gameplay to their specific desires and situation.

Q: Why is the talent system going through an overhaul?

As with the talent-system redesign in Cataclysm, our goal is ultimately to give players more meaningful character-customization options and to eliminate “cookie-cutter” talent builds. We were only partially successful in realizing that goal in Cataclysm, as many talents still felt mandatory to a given specialization, and some talent choices in the trees were still not particularly interesting or exciting. By giving the benefits of the previously “mandatory” talents to players automatically as part of their specialization choice, and allowing any specialization to choose any given talent, we hope to be able to give players much more significant and interesting decisions to make about their character.

Q: Will you be making any changes to how stats work?

Yes. As World of Warcraft has matured and more expansions, content updates, and tiers of equipment have been released, players’ stats have begun to inflate exponentially. At this point, the numbers for health, mana, and so on are threatening to get out of control. In order to combat this and bring statistics back to earth -- or Azeroth, as it were -- in Mists of Pandaria, we will be “flattening” the statistic curve in places where it no longer needs to behave exponentially (primarily at the point of the end game for old expansions). In practice, this means that upon the expansion’s release, the numbers for Strength, Health, Intellect, damage, and so on will be significantly lower than you’re used to seeing across the board, from level 1 to level 85. It’s all relative, of course -- enemies’ and bosses’ stats will be reduced as well, and it should take a level-85 warrior roughly the same number of many sword-whacks and ability uses to kill a level-85 monster as it did before. However, this also means the difference between each level between 1 and 85 will be less significant, so you may find that an enemy 5 or 10 levels below your own will be a little tougher to deal with than it was before.

Q: Will players be allowed to fly in Pandaria?

Upon arrival in Pandaria, players will be restricted from flying until they reach a certain point in their quest progression. While the ability to fly is a great convenience for players once they have completed content, we can provide a much more enjoyable, rewarding, and varied questing experience if players are (mostly) grounded while the story of Pandaria unfolds.

Q: Will there be any updates to the graphics and changes to the minimum system requirements?

Yes, there will be incremental tweaks and updates to the graphics engine in this expansion. For example, we’ve made improvements to the way textures are displayed. We’ll announce the exact system requirements closer to the expansion’s release.
by Published on 2011-10-21 10:51 PM

Update - Added Blizzard's official preview, which has a bunch of nice screenshots and is overall nicer than what we could get.
Update - The panel is now over, I added missing info from before the stream at the beginning of the report.

WoW Dungeons and Raids Panel
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)


While much of the World of Warcraft buzz around BlizzCon has thus far been focused on the pandaren race, monk class, and talent system overhaul, there remains the question: what are you going to do with all of it?

The World of Warcraft Dungeons and Raids panel recently kicked off to answer that very question. Who are the big bad guys you need to kill, and where can you kill them?

Three new dungeons were shown out of the nine total planned in the initial release of the expansion, starting with Temple of the Jade Serpent, the first dungeon you’ll encounter while leveling from 85 to 90. In this dungeon you’ll be tasked with defeating the Sha of Doubt, one of the elemental enemies threatening the shrouded continent and sacred pandaren ways.


The second dungeon previewed was the Stormstout Brewery. Chen Stormstout of WarCraft III fame is a revered figure within pandaren culture, and his brewery has been overrun by the Verming and Hozu, a couple of the less-than-savory races that also inhabit Pandaria. You’re tasked with reclaiming his family heritage… and his beer.


The third dungeon previewed at BlizzCon was the Shado-pan Monastery. Located in Kun-Lai Summit, this mountain retreat serves as the home and training grounds of the mysterious Shado-pan Clan, a ninja-like pandaren faction dedicated to protecting Pandaria. Again, the Sha have been set free and threaten the Shado-pan’s base of operations, and you’re tasked with dispatching them.


In addition to the three new dungeons that were shown, two classic dungeon crawls are getting the Deadmines treatment and will return in level-90 Heroic fashion. While they'll still be accessible in their lower-level form for those leveling their new pandaren, both Scarlet Monastery and Scholomance will be buffed up, spit-shined, and made relevant to max-level characters with new, challenging encounters and equally high-level drops. Scholomance is returning with a more streamlined layout and the Scarlet Monastery, too big to return as one dungeon, is being split up into two wings. The Graveyard and Cathedral are being combined into one level-90 Heroic dungeon, and the Library and Armory into another. Whitemane's Chapeau for everyone!


Are you yawning at the idea of more five-player dungeons? You may be interested in Challenges. This is a new time trial system coming in Mists of Pandaria for level-90 dungeons. The challenge itself may not always be difficult, but ranking will be. Do well and you'll earn a bronze, silver, or gold medal. Completing the Challenge on gold will incur a stacking debuff on future attempts: it’ll start with a 5% debuff, but if you manage to finish with a gold medal time on that run you’ll receive a 10% debuff on your next run, and so on.

In addition to realm-wide bragging rights, completing Challenges will award you with unique Transmogrification items and other vanity rewards. Oh, did we forget to mention that your gear will be normalized? Sorry, no gearing up or stacking items to get the best times -- your item level will be normalized so that even when the next raid encounter comes out and new gear drops, your world-record will stand until some other group of chumps actually has the skill to beat it.

Challenges will be enabled during any dungeon run that supports them, including those joined through the Dungeon Finder. To help get people together that are looking to achieve the same goals, a special flag will be available to only match you with others looking to do Challenges if you do use the Dungeon Finder.


One of the three new raids launching with Mists of Pandaria was also unveiled: Mogu’Shan Palace. This six-boss raid is located in the Vale of Eternal Blossoms, and invites you to explore the hidden secrets of the elusive Mogu empire, one of the new indigenous Pandarian races.


In Cataclysm, Heroic dungeons were intentionally designed as gear and difficulty checks on the progression to raiding. In Mists of Pandaria, the Raid Finder will be the appropriate transition from running dungeons to Normal raids. Heroic dungeons will largely be tuned to be about as difficult as they were in Wrath of the Lich King, allowing players to fairly quickly down bosses in PUGs and hit their Valor Point caps. Valor Points will follow a new philosophy with 4.3, as a parallel way to gear up alongside the Raid Finder, but not as a fill-in for boss drops.

The overall goal for this expansion is that any time you log in, you should be able to make some kind of progress on your character. Whether that's through Normal or Heroic raiding, queuing for a Raid Finder run, hitting dailies for rewards and VP, busting out a scenario with some strangers, or joining some buddies for a dungeon Challenge, we want you to be making meaningful progression on your character. Some ways will be faster than others, but no matter what you choose to do, you'll be making progress.

The goals for dungeons and raids in Mists of Pandaria are to create epic and challenging experiences, but Cataclysm also helped us learn where we can improve with the new expansion. The Raid Finder will help with taking that first step into endgame content, and it will be available for all Mists of Pandaria raids. Beyond that, we want to create more easily understandable encounters and move away from mechanics that simply set up groups to fail, while still keeping them challenging.

We’re also looking to address some of the issues that came with how the zones and locations were spread out in Cataclysm. While that’s largely addressed with Pandaria simply being one continent, it also includes giving dungeons and raids more of a presence in the world. All of the dungeons and raids in Pandaria exist as actual locations you can walk up to and fly over, and aren’t just encapsulated experiences hidden behind a portal.

If you’d like to watch the panel, you can replay the recording in its entirety with a Virtual Ticket.
Mists of Pandaria Raids & Dungeons Panel
The stream got bugged at the beginning, the preview will be completed by notes from people we have on site at the end of the panel.
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment

Shado-pan Monastery
  • Located in Kun-Lai Summit
  • Mountain retreat of the mysterious Shado-pan Clan
  • The Shado-pan protect Pandaria from hidden evil
  • The Sha have escaped! (Shado pan keep Sha caged in the monastery, but it's escaped and you're trying to help figure this out)
  • A great idea for layout..Changes into something more epic!
  • Like to do outdoor dungeons because there are so many indoor already. They jump at opportunity to make outdoor.

Scholomance
  • Level 90 Heroic
  • New layout with familiar rooms (shuffle rooms around to make a remix out of it)
  • Easier to navigate
  • Concentrate on the coolness (of Scholo and take away everything that didn't quite make the cut)

Scarlet Monastery
  • Level 90 Heroic
  • Too much awesome for one dungeon (Remixed and keep all the coolest rooms)
  • Split Monastery in two!
  • Graveyard + Cathedral
  • Armory + Library
  • Update all boss mechanics

Challenge Modes
  • For players looking for a greater challenge
  • Timed dungeons runs to earn medals. The concept of Zul'Aman timed runs and similar things is now turned into a brand new game mode!
  • It will work only on Pandaria dungeons at the beginning.
  • It will work with the Dungeon Finder tool.
  • Gear will be normalized, everyone is going to have the exact same item level on their gear. This is a skill based exercise and your gear doesn't matter.
  • Rewards will be very awesome looking gear for Transmogrification purposes (no stats). You will also get valor points since the new goal is to let you progress your characters no matter what you do.
  • Leaderboards will be available, you will be able to compare your performances with your guildies or even your entire realm!

Raids
  • The raids are going to feature the Mogu and the Mantids
  • All the new raids will work in Raid Finder, Normal, and Heroic difficulties.

Mogu'Shan Palace
  • Located atop Kun-Lai Summit at the center of Pandaria
  • Six boss raid
  • It will let you explore the hidden secrets of the ancien Mogu empire. Even the Pandarians pretty much never went to this place.

Raid Finder (Patch 4.3)
  • The concept came up when developers realized how succesful the dungeon finder is.
  • They want the raid content to be available to a wider audience, everyone should have a chance to see that new content. They wanted most players to be able to experience the fight against Deathwing, etc ...
  • The Raid Finder will have a Lower difficulty and rewards than Normal Difficulty. It won't be just a damage or health point reduction, mechanics will be reworked to make fights easier.
  • This is only in Dragon Soul in Patch 4.3, but it will be available in all raids in patch 5.0
  • Works for 25-Player and not with 10-Players, makes queue times much faster.

Goals for Mists of Pandaria
  • Keep the experience short and focused. Dungeons should be short enough to let you run a couple of dungeons when you feel like it, not just one.
  • Make encounters understandable and do not set up groups to fail. The dungeon journal has been added to the game to make sure that people don't die and wonder what the hell happened.
  • Fights will be made clearer and more understandable, the Dungeon Journal was a first step and the goal is to make fights even clearer. It also means that you shouldn't be able to just tank and spank and wonder what happened but still win.
  • Flex our creative Kung-fu. This expansion offers a lot of creative freedom and a lot of new stuff, developers tried to make sure that you'll get dragon punches and all kind of crazy and fun moves.

Q&A
How is gear going to scale in the challenge mode?
We are currently planning for it to scale down. An alternative to scaling the gear would be to scale the monsters up, to make sure that players do not feel less powerful.

Regarding the dungeon finder and raid finder, are we going to be able to enter a random queue for possibly TBC raids, or WOTLK?
Currently weve talked about it a little bit, one of the things we are concerned about is that if there are actually people to fill that queue. We are not sure if raid finder is a fit for those cases. In the future we could do it.

Dungeons are now visible in outside world, but in BC there were also lots of these. Why did you not do this in Cata?
Over time we have dungeons that existed in outside world, and theres a secondary thing to it. for example the stormbrew brewery where quests actually go inside/around the dungeon. Historically we have had to scale them to be smaller, here they are 1:1 scale so they have awesome impact to the zones.

Can we do quests in a raid group?
Maybe, it has been talked about.

Why are kick wait timers so long?
It depends on how often that person has been kicked, as well as how often you kick people. It is modified dynamically.

Why did you start Cataclysm with so many bosses and raids, and then add so few in the later patches?
Plans aren't finalized for the first tier yet. It might be two or three different raids, loot distribution also needs to be worked out.

In Cataclysm, there is a very steep difficulty jump between normals and heroics, how are you going to handle that in MoP? Will there be more Level 90 normals?
We are currently not planning to have 90 normal dungeons in MoP.

Previous hard modes required internet research to figure out how to toggle them, now it is just a switch. Can we go back to the old way with multiple difficulites?
It was hard to come up with this kind of mechanic for all the bosses, it worked with bosses that had order or additional minibosses, but not most others. We are all for fun toggles, but most bosses don't need multiple difficulty modes.

Right now you currently randomly choose legendary to a class that hasnt got one for a while cant you make a quest chain where guilds can give the legendary to their most deserving raid member?
The questlines we are currently making have really class specific features, we could open it up but it would lose some of that exclusivity. Do you want unique and awesome or generic and boring?

The 10/25 man lockout is frustrating because I have nothing to do on my alt. Will Raid Finder let us join as a group with our guild?
You can queue with a group, there are no lockouts, and normal/heroic raids do not share any lockout with Raid Finder difficulty. (You only get loot once from Raid Finder)

For Cata, there are 3 raids that came in right from the expansion. Have you guys thought about a way to not make it so overwhelming? Is there going to be like a middle ground?
Essentially the number of bosses comes down to make sure we can spread the loot around. It mostly comes down to the number of bosses we can get down for a patch.

Are any more old classic WoW dungeons going to be remade, maybe Hogger?
Everyone loves them, but it is a matter of time. We made sure to get some in for Cataclysm launch, we want to add them whenever we have time to do so.

So when you guys announced 4.3 you said there were only going to be 7 bosses. You said you were going to focus on epicness and putting more work into them. Firelands only felt like half a raid. Is this omsething we can expect to see in the next raid tiering in MoP?
We want as many people as possible to experience that content. We were looking at the number of people getting kills on the raid bosses and there were not a lot. We immediately put out hotfixes to make sure more people can experience the content.

Is there any plan to seperate 10 and 25 man achievements again, especially server firsts?
There were some difficulty differences, it is something we have talked about but we aren't making any promises right now. Maybe in the future!

You were talking how challenge modes can be done for dungeons, are they also for raids and will they be unlocked immediatly or will they unlock gradually?
There is a chance we could do them for raids, we want to start out with dungeons and see if it feels right. There is one thing we didnt really mention, but say when you get the gold medal, your gear would get nerfed so you can run it again. We havent really finalised this to be honest.

Two raids on the same tier gives players choice in progression. Single raids make it hard to get to the end and make progress. Will you add raids that have multiple paths to get to the last boss?
This is something we are talking about, especially with Raid Finder. It breaks up Dragon Soul in 4.3 into two parts, giving you the big reward for beating either part. This might be something we can do if we figure out the logistics in the future.

Last years BlizzCon and during cata you hinted at an Abyssal Maw raid, what happened to it?
We do not have any plans to release the Abyssal Maw raid, it was going to fit in the end of this year. The story line we were telling didnt fit with the patch cycle. It just ended up not fitting. The concept was as far as we got on it. From the story perspective we have moved on so we probably wont use it again.

For the new dungeon challenges, how are you going to handle lower stats like hit. Will it put you below your hit cap?
Good point, there are lots of details like that to work out. We have Top Men working on this. Top Men.

In Ulduar and Icecrown you could get the Mimiron's Head or Invincible for completing the hard modes, but in Firelands you gave the Fire hawk mounts to people completing normal mode as well. And it's a bummer to see people who don't deserve it running around with the awesome mounts.
In normal mode you had a small chance to get them, and in Heroic mode you had a 100% drop rate, you were rewarded more. That's part of the reason why we will separate the Raid finder difficulty now, mounts will only come from Normal and Heroic modes since the Raid Finder is an intro to raiding. All the prestige items will stay in normal and heroic mode.




by Published on 2011-10-21 10:16 PM

Update - Raids & Dungeons Panel isn't being streamed and was replaced by SC2 stuff apparently, we have people on site taking notes and will report shortly.

Update - Blizzard released their own write ups of the last 2 panels, check them out!



World of Warcraft - Mists of Pandaria B-roll
A new video preview of the Mists of Pandaria zone is available on the CurseNetwork Youtube Channel

by Published on 2011-10-21 09:17 PM

World of Warcraft - Class Talent Systems Panel

Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Talents 2.0
  • Major change to class talent trees, and this is a new phase of development for the talent system.
  • The goal is to have you sit to another next to another combat rogue, and this combat rogue will actually have different talents than you do!
  • Character customization was the original point of talents in the first place but overtime cookie cutter builds dominated the scene.

New Model
  • Class Abilities are available to all specs in the class. All warriors learn heroic strike for example.
  • Spec Abilities are available to certain specs. Only Arms warriors learn Slam. Retribution and Protection paladin get Hammer of the Righteous, etc ...
  • Talents are optional skills/bonuses available to all specs. Any warrior can choose Throwdown, and you will have to pick between 3 different crowd control abilities on this level of talent.
  • Level 15 - You pick your first talent. For example, warriors have to pick between Juggernaut / Double Time / Warbringer and players will have to pick which mobility ability they want to pick depending on their playstyle.

Talent Philosophy
  • Access to stuff you never could before. If you were a subtlety rogue you knew you weren't going to get something like Killing Spree. And because talents are going to be all in the same tree, you're going to be able to combine them in a way that you never could before. For example, any rogue can have Shadowstep!
  • Several new, overpowered (feeling) talents will be added to the game.
  • If you don't see a beloved talent in your new talents list, don't worry, it's probably something we gave your spec as a baseline. For example all Holy priests now have Circle of Healing.
  • No mandatory talents anymore.
  • Every choice should be hard but fun!

Talent Preview
  • Design will iterate a lot on individual talents
  • Don't obsess about the numbers

Death Knight
See screenshots of all tiers


Druid
See screenshots of all tiers


Hunter
See screenshots of all tiers


Mage
See screenshots of all tiers


Paladin
See screenshots of all tiers


Priest
See screenshots of all tiers


Rogue
See screenshots of all tiers


Shaman
See screenshots of all tiers


Warlock
See screenshots of all tiers


Warrior
See screenshots of all tiers


Change is scary!!!
  • Talents aren't set in stone yet.
  • Questions will be answered during the Q&As tomorrow.
  • An online developer Q&A will happen on October 27
by Published on 2011-10-21 07:33 PM

Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
What is Mists of Pandaria?
  • The goal is to combine new gameplay with most fun parts of the past.
  • The plan is to get people back into the world, instead of having players roam around Stormwind and Orgrimmar all the time once they reach max level.
  • Developers want you to do what you want to do to progress your character. They really want you to feel like you have a menu of content where you can pick whatever you want to do, and you shouldn't feel forced to do something to progress your character. For example, daily quests will reward you with valor points but it will still be faster if you raid of course.
  • Character builds are going to be entirely revamped. Talents were still too cookie cutter, so the developers want to give players more choices in their talents.

Pandaria
  • 5 New leveling zones to explore
  • Single, unified continent
  • Influenced by Asian landscapes
  • AH, Bank, and Central Questing Hub
  • No flying until max level
  • There's 5 leveling zones but they are very large zones, and you won't have your flying mount.


Lore of Pandaria
  • A long, storied history.
  • Magically hidden since The Sundering
  • A new land to explore....
  • Pandaria was discovered during the cataclysm, a naval battle between horde and alliance was taking place close to it.


Pandaren starting zone
  • It's a turtle! It left Pandaria 10 000 years ago and never came back. Pandarens who wanted to discover the world left on that turtle.
  • Story focused with simple mechanics
  • Cross faction, choose Horde/Alliance at level 10.





Creatures of Pandaria
  • The Jinyu are fish-like creatures and will be in a wide number of zones.
  • The Hozu are a monkey-like race, they stand up on their legs and can walk around. They play tons of pranks on the local pandarens and are also in a lot of zones.
  • Verming are ... new kobolds, they kinda look like evil bunnies.
  • Mantid: Whole raids and dungeons around this race. Insect race that has been there since the beginning of ages. They have been seperated by a giant wall. They are starting to go crazy and are going through the wall
  • Mogu: Ancient race, original race on pandaria. The mogu want the island back from the pandaren, they are really mad. You will see them in dungeons.
  • Sha: Manifestation of the evil energies that flow through the earth. If there is any sort of battle these guys pop up.


The Jade Forest
  • This is where Alliance and Horde will be landing. The horde is washing up on the north side, the alliance on the south side. There will be one unified start zone and Alliance/Horde will end up meeting up in the middle.
  • Lush rainforests and stone spires
  • The Alliance will try to become friend with the Hozu, and the Horde with the Jinyu and will try to turn them against each other.
  • Temple of the Jade Serpent will be the dungeon of this zone. It will be your 85-86 Dungeon, it has been taken over by Sha




Valley of the Four Winds
  • Two zones for the price of one! This zone is huge, the whole north side of the zone is pandaren farmlands, the south is a coastal jungle.
  • You will get to choose between the north side and the south side when you arrive. You can go back and switch side if you want the other quests.
  • The dungeon of this zone is Stormstout Brewery.
  • This is where you will have your first interaction with the Mantids, they broke through the wall and are now attacking pandarens villages.
  • This is a level 86-87 zone




New Features
  • The pandarens are the new race.
  • The female model isn't done yet.
  • At level 10, you will get to choose between horde and alliance.
  • Pandaren Classes: Hunter, Mage, Monk, Priest, Rogue, Shaman, Warrior
  • Racial - Epicurean - Increase the stat benefits from food by 100%
  • Racial - Gourmand - Cooking skill increased by 15.
  • Racial - Inner Peace - Your rested experience bonus lasts twice as long.
  • Racial - Bouncy - You take 50% less falling damage.
  • Racial - Quaking Palm - You touch a secret pressure point on an enemy target, putting it to sleep for 3 sec.




Monk New Class
  • Brewmaster - Tank spec
  • Mistweaver - Healer, a healer who can stand up in melee and will let players experience a "new healing style"
  • Windwalker - Melee DPS
  • This is not a hero class, and it will start at level 1
  • The class is very martial-arts based
  • Lots of monk-only animations, the healer and tanks will have different stances they can stand in, etc ...
  • Monk Races - All of them except Goblin and Worgens



Monk Equipment
  • Leather Armor (Agility or Intellect)
  • They hit a lot with hands and feet
  • They will need weapons for some finishers: Staves, Fist Weapons
  • They will also be able to use 1H Axe and maces, swords
  • Healers will get off-hands, they don't want healers to use shields.

Monk Resources
  • Chi (energy) slowly regenerates and is only used for your Jab and Roll abilities.
  • Jab generates Light and Dark force, which are used for everything else. Some finishing move uses dark force, some use the light force.
  • No auto attack! Devs want you to have this street fighter feel where you punch a lot


Cataclysm Talents
  • Pro - The level 10 specs were really nice and gave you a role early in the game, definitely a keeper.
  • Pro - Removing junk from the talent trees was also a very good move.
  • Pro - Having some kind of choices for optional skills/subspecs worked out pretty well.
  • Con - You had a risk of "skipping" important talents
  • Con - There wasn't enough junk removed
  • Con - There wasn't enough choices, you might have a different final talent point than another combat rogue but it just wasn't enough. The cookie cutter build still persists.
  • Con - No enough customization, no true hybridization (Using a little bit of 2 different trees)
  • Con - Players got grumpy

Talent System 2.0
  • The talent system is gone! Ok, not really, but it's greatly changed.
  • You now have your class abilities, your spec abilities, and your talents.
  • You still choose your spec at level 10, and you get a spec ability at level 10. You will get additional spec abilities later. There are anything that you really need to function, they will just be given to you to make sure you have all the tools you need to have.

Example - Prot Paladin
  • LVL 10 - Avenger's Shield
  • LVL 20 - Hammer of the Righteous (Prot and Ret)
  • LVL 30 - Judgement of the Just (Passive)


Talents
  • There is not talent points or ranks.
  • There is one talent pree per class.
  • You earn talents every 15 levels.
  • You get to choose 1 out of 3 every time you get a new point, you can only pick one of them and can't go back to get the other ones.
  • There will be no mandatory talent. There won't be any cookie cutter build or anything, it will depend on what kind of optional ability you want.
  • You can now change talents as easily as you change glyphs.
  • More info in the Talent Tree Panel at 2:15


PvE Scenarios
  • PvE Scenarios are a way to give new interesting content that doesn't make sense in a dungeon content.
  • Scenarios are more about reusing parts of the world in interesting new ways, and introducing new types of PvE gameplay that we've never seen before like PvE battlegrounds.
  • They are short instances for a few players, the amount of players can vary depending on the scenario, some of them can be for 3 players.
  • You don't need the typical tank/heal/dps setup, you will just be able to enter and play your role no matter what it is.
  • It will be a staged experience where you will try to accomplish some greater goal
  • For example, a scenario might require you to kill 25 kobolds in stage 1, then find and return 4 goldshire children, and then kill the boss.
  • Developers would like to do PvE battlegrounds, where you will have to slay 50 alliance/horde soldiers, destroy 6 towers and the barracks, and then defeat the enemy General.
  • They could replace group quests.
  • It uses the same queue system as the dungeon finder
  • Since there is no role requirements, queues should be instant.



Challenge Mode Dungeons
  • Complete a dungeon in x minutes
  • To earn Bronze, Silver, Gold medals.
  • Gear levels are normalized, all your gear will be brought to the same level to make the competition even.
  • You can't just get better gear to overpower it.
  • It will reward sweet looking gear with no stats, and valor points!
  • Challenge Mode will reward you with very unique looking gear to show off how awesome you are to your friends
  • A new challenge dungeons UI will be added, you will be able to check your medals, your ranking, show what rewards you can unlock, etc ....


Pet Battle System
  • You will be able to collect, level, and battle with companion pets.
  • It will be accessible to all players.
  • Works with almost every pet
  • Pet Customization, you will be able to name your pet, give them visual abilities, etc ...
  • There will be "Wild pets", you can find them in the world and engage in battle with them. You will then be able to get that pet and add it to your Pet Journal.
  • Pets have random stats, some of them will be very good at tanking, some will have a CC ability, etc ...
  • Some pets will only be found during a specific season, while it's raining, or during the day or the night. Some of them will only spawn in the spring, when it's raining, in elwynn forest at night!
  • Most pets will become tradable, even after it's leveled, etc ...
  • Pets will be account wide
  • Your pet journal will display info on all your pets, including stats, skills, and also drop locations and lore info for the pets you don't have yet!
  • Winning battles earns you experience, and levels your pets.
  • You will learn new abilities. Every pet can use 3 abilities in a battle at one time.
  • Every time you level you will also increase the stats of your pet.
  • You will level multiple pets to build your team.
  • You have 3 battle slots, one for each pet in your team.


Pet Battle System - Battle
  • PvE and PvP Battles
  • It will be turn based.
  • A simple combat system.
  • Fight with a team of 3 pets
  • Queuing system, you will be able to find a fight pretty fast depending on the level of your pets.


Pet Battle System - Customization
  • You will finally be able to name your pets, and see that name in battle.
  • Items for your pets, you will have an item slot for your pet and might be able to socket gems in those items, etc ...
  • Individual builds of abilities and different teams.
  • Masters and Masters abilities, there will be different NPC pet masters in the world who will let you earn abilities when you beat them. For example, beating the master of mechanical pets will get you a new ability for your pet!


Dungeons
  • 9 new dungeons in the new expansion
  • 6 dungeons will be on Pandaria
  • Scholomance and Scarlet Monastery (Wings 1 and 2) will be back in Heroic Mode



Raids
3 new Epic raids!
  • They will feature two enemy races, the Mogu and the Mantid.
  • Raid Finder, Normal, and Heroic difficulties will be available for all raids from day 1.
  • World raid bosses will return!
  • More info will be available at the Raids & Dungeons Panel today.

Questing
  • Increased focus on max level content, it will reward you with Valor Points.
  • Incentives for dungeons/raiders to run quests and do outdoor/daily kind of stuff. For example finishing a quest might give you a buff for the day, and maybe that buff will let you roll on a loot that only appears to people with that buff.
  • More quest choices, and a lot less linear
  • No flying until max level, it's much easier to keep people on the ground and create interesting quests when you know people won't just fly away and drop on the boss.
  • Faction improvements, there will be group of factions and they will let you work for all factions from that group to get your rewards. This way you don't have to grind a single faction anymore.


PvP
New Battlegrounds (Not final yet)
  • Stranglethorn Diamond Mines - Payload style gameplay.
  • Valley of Power - Murderball
  • Azshara Crater - DOTA
  • New Arena - Tol'vir Proving Grounds


STV Diamond Mine
  • Goblin Mine below northern STV
  • Payload style gameplay
  • Escort mine cars to depot
  • Multiple tracks, you will get a lot of options and you will be able to decide which way you want the cart to go.
  • First to x resources wins


Valley of Power
  • Located in the Vale of Eternal Blossoms
  • Murderball style gameplay
  • Holding the object earns points
  • Multiple point zones, depending on where you're hiding you will earn more/less points
  • Object deals damage to holder
  • Damage increases over time.


Tol'vir Proving Grounds - Arena
  • Located in Uldum
  • Simple layout based on Nagrand arena
  • Sense of place in the world
  • Just a simple square with 4 pillars/statues, etc ...


Achievements
  • Allow achievements to be shared among all characters on the same Battle.net account, things such as the raid achievements and the ones which are difficult to get.
  • Allows to include new achievements such as "get all the professions to the maximum level"


Major Class Changes
Resilience
  • Devs like the way Resilience works in PvP, and how it gives a nice goal for players looking to progress/upgrade their gear in PvP
  • Resilience is a pretty huge barrier for people who want to start PvPing.
  • Resilience will become a base stat, and will increase a little every time you level.

Ranged Weapons
  • Hunter minimum range is gone!
  • Hunter melee weapon is gone!
  • Ranged slot for all other characters are gone.
  • Relics are gone.
  • Rogues and warriors can now throw their melee weapon
  • Wands become main hand weapons


Warlock
  • Unique resource for each spec.
  • Affliction will keep Soul Shards, they are currently not interesting enough but devs have cool ideas for them.
  • Demonology will get Demonic Fury, you build up Demonic Fury and you metamorphosize when you max your Demonic Fury. More skills will be added to Demon Form, etc ...
  • Destruction will get Infernal Embers. The destruction warlock who keeps getting casting fire spells get hotter and hotter and will eventually deal insane amount of damage, you can build it up pretty quickly and unleash your big spell.

Shaman
  • Buff totems are gone. It just wasn't very interesting to be the buff bitch of the group.
  • All totems are now utility
  • New totem examples:
  • Earthgrab totem - roots
  • Repulsion totem - repels
  • Bulwark Totem - absorbs

Druid
  • They always felt like they had 4 specs, so now they do.
  • Feral - Cat (melee dps)
  • Guardian - bear (tanking)
  • Some overlap between the two
  • All druids can still go cat or bear form.

All classes
  • Spell books cleaned up, got rid of more junk, the goal is to clean up action bars a little more without removing the fun things.
  • Rotations will be improved
  • Spells will be automatically learned, you won't have to go to your trainer anymore.
  • You will get a new spell at level 87, level 90 new talent point.
  • Talent trees should be fun, and you should have more choice than just a cookie cutter build.


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