MMO-Champion - World of Warcraft News and Raiding Strategies

World of Warcraft News and Raiding Strategies RSS Feed

by Published on 2011-02-15 02:45 AM

Arcane Hotfixes
Originally Posted by Bashiok (Blue Tracker)
As previously discussed ( http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/2065568025 ) we're currently planning to put out a couple hotfixes specifically for Arcane mages. Likely today.



However, with the above change in mind we are also going to nerf the Shard of Woe trinket to halve the mana savings for Arcane spells only. It's still a fantastic trinket for Arcane mages even with the reduction.

Patch 4.0.6 Hotfixes - February 14
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)
February 14
General
  • Players who are exalted with 40 factions are again awarded The Exalted title. Note that the associated achievement does not state that this title will be awarded when it's earned. This will be corrected in a future patch. More information can be found here.

Druid (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • Starfall will now hit any target in range which is in combat or not at full health (including the Exposed Head of Magmaw, which was causing issues with Starfall).

Paladin (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • The hotfix to Beacon of Light and Light of Dawn on February 11 did not produce the intended results and has been reverted. Light of Dawn should still trigger Beacon of Light.

Raids & Dungeons
Blackwing Descent
  • The Atramedes achievement Silence is Golden was incorrectly failing when any raid member's sound bar went over 30%. The achievement now requires no one's sound bar to go over 50% as advertised.

Professions
Alchemy
  • The Mysterious Potion was restoring the wrong amount of mana. It now restores 1 to 15,000 mana, instead of 1 to 30,000.

Fishing
  • The Bone and Jeweled Fishing Pole quest rewards are now item level 15, down from 200.

Herbalism
  • Whiptail was spawning too quickly in Uldum after patch 4.0.6. The spawn time has been reduced.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Whiptail respawn rates way too high?
We're aware of this and taking a look at the respawn rates. (Source)

Twilight Jasmine spawn rate
There was no nerf after release, but there (I believe) was an issue with herbs being in different phases than you so thus the sparseness. I also believe that this was corrected. But, I can definitely ask about Twilight Jasmine. (Source)

Zul'aman and Amani Bear Mount
One never knows what might happen with Zul'Aman and the treasures of old found therein... (Source)

Warlock (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
Warlock damage "changes" in 4.0.6
We're aware of the concerns that the damage of Immolate and Corruption may have gone down unintentionally as part of 4.0.6 or a bug fix shortly thereafter. This was not an intentional change and so far we’ve been unable to determine if such a change occurred or what could have caused it. We have, for example, looked at several Destruction warlocks whose DoT damage went up, which would be the expected outcome of the Improved Soul Fire talent. If you have additional new information, especially if it's empirical and reproducible, please share it with us as we continue to investigate. (Source)

Warrior (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
Fury in 4.0.6
After 4.0.6 went in, Fury was doing more damage than projected, and higher dps than we wanted for the spec. Essentially, the 4.0.6 changes for Fury weren't intended to be a damage buff to begin with - we just wanted to make the mastery more appealing and de-emphasize Heroic Strike. Instead, we saw Fury damage jump up more than could be accounted for from factors like the metagem change. It also seems that Raging Blow had become very strong after the mastery change. So, we made the decision to reduce Fury damage, and Raging Blow became a good place to make that adjustment, since that allowed us to address both the PvE damage issues and the PvP burst concerns at the same time.

We think the verdict is still out over whether Single-Minded Fury has become a clear choice over Titan's Grip. All the evidence available right now is theory crafted, but we still want to see how performance shakes out in actual play. If the theory crafting turns out to be correct, then we'll consider adjusting Single-Minded Fury then, probably a reduction. In the meantime, it's probably best to stick with whichever play style you find the most fun, or at least, have the most appropriate weapons for. It's good to keep in mind that there are more two-handed weapons with strength on them than there are strength heavy one-handed weapons, though there's also probably more competition for those two-handers as well.

No offense... but how did you not account for this?
No offense taken. World of Warcraft is a complex game, and due to all the factors involved, predicting performance changes over the whole playing population and in every feasible scenario can be challenging. We run the numbers to predict dps under several different conditions and then compare those estimates to empirical data (generated in house and collected from live games). Most of the time, that data gives us a pretty accurate picture. Still, there are a lot of Fury warriors out there with various mixes of gear, talent specs and skill levels, and despite the projections, damage went up for a lot of those players more than we expected. (Source)

Fury AoE
Some of you have expressed some concerns regarding Fury AoE, so this is a good time to mention that we're looking at area of effect damage for a lot of specs, Fury included. So, it's on the radar. (Source)

Warrior DPS
We feel that warrior dps is about where it should be, and that the class continues to bring valuable output to a raid and will scale well in the future as well. (Source)

SMF vs. Titan's Grip
Single-Minded Fury and Titan's Grip were really close in the wake of 4.0.6, which was a good place. Now it's possible that SMF is doing better than TG by a wider margin than we're comfortable with. We don't want to eliminate choices and see a rush on SMF, and we'd rather see players choosing the weapons they'd prefer. If that means bringing SMF back into line with TG, then that might be the course of action we take. Nothing is necessarily guaranteed or imminent though. (Source)

Class balance / PTR Testing and Fury Nerf
A lot of players on the PTR correctly predicted the problem, yes. But players always predict problems, many of which never materialize. The feedback from the PTRs is valuable, but we don't expect it to result in a perfect assessment, and we've learned that we can’t and shouldn’t just accept everything at face value. Players that post concisely, objectively and provide a lot of verifiable evidence of their claims tend to provide the most valuable information, and the kind of feedback that we're far more likely to heed. When concerns are raised, we discuss them and run tests of our own, and decide whether a change is warranted or not.

In this case, we were aware of the concerns being raised about Raging Blow burst damage in PvP. We agreed with the arguments that it required a lot of cooldowns and stacked mastery to get going, and even then enrage could easily be removed by several classes. We didn't believe that this would lead to Fury dominating PvP, and we didn't change it at the time because we didn’t want to nerf Fury’s PvE damage over a (possibly overstated) PvP concern. We also didn't want to risk making mastery a poor stat again, which was the most significant issue we were trying to fix. When Fury’s PvE dps proved higher than our target, then Raging Blow was the obvious candidate to decrease since a reduction there was likely to solve all the issues that we were hoping to address. (Source)

Love Is in the Air... and in This New Blizzard Comic
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)
We've just added a special treat to our Blizzard Art gallery: a heartwarming piece from our own Samwise Didier, just in time for Valentine's Day. Be sure to check the Blizzard Art section regularly, as we plan to release more webcomics from Blizzard artists in the months ahead.
by Published on 2011-02-14 06:24 AM

Home/World latency in Patch 4.0.6
Patch 4.0.6 changed how latency is displayed to the client, we now have a "Home" latency and a "World" latency, BrianI on the Tech Support forums posted a long explanation of what it means exactly and how latency works in WoW.


Originally Posted by BrianI (Blue Tracker)
We have been seeing a lot of confusion regarding some of our recent changes to the User Interface, specifically in regard to the new in-game latency meters. With 4.0.6, we have split the two separate connections the client forms to our game servers into two different ratings, labeled 'Home' and 'World'.

The speculation regarding what these ratings mean has been very interesting and some of the guesses as to what the numbers actually refer to have been pretty imaginative. Some have speculated that 'Home' referred to your personal latency and 'World' was Blizzard's latency. This is incorrect.

In essence, 'Home' refers to your connection to your realm server. This connection sends chat data, auction house stuff, guild chat and info, some addon data, and various other data. It is a pretty slim connection in terms of bandwidth requirements.

'World' is a reference to the connection to our servers that transmits all the other data... combat, data from the people around you (specs, gear, enchants, etc.), NPCs, mobs, casting, professions, etc. Going into a highly populated zone (like a capital city) will drastically increase the amount of data being sent over this connection and will raise the reported latency.

Prior to 4.0.6, the in-game latency monitor only showed 'World' latency, which caused a lot of confusion for people who had no lag while chatting, but couldn't cast or interact with NPCs and ended up getting kicked offline. We hoped that including the latency meters for both connections would assist in clarifying this for everyone.

As is probably obvious based upon this information, the two connections are not used equally. There is a much larger amount of data being sent over the World connection, which is a good reason you may see disparities between the two times. If there is a large chunk of data 'queued' up on the server and waiting to be sent to your client, that 'ping' to the server is going to have to wait its turn in line, and the actual number returned will be much higher than the 'Home' connection.

"Well, great," you may say, "but what does that mean to me?!"

Not much, maybe, but I wanted to focus on how local (or network) factors can (and will!) affect these numbers.

Here are the most common causes of high pings/latency (on both Home and World):

  • 1) Wireless
  • 2) Packet loss
  • 3) Almost-but-not-quite-broadband*
  • 4) Addons (yes, those wonderful UI modifications)
  • 5) Firewalls (some firewalls do interesting things to latency... try playing without it to see if it helps!)
  • 5) Mis-configured or defective home routers (please temporarily bypass before anything else)
  • 6) Quality of Service and Traffic Management Systems performing packet queuing of some sort.
  • 7) Net link saturation (not necessarily your ISP, but somewhere between you and Blizzard)

*As of July 2010, the 'official' definition of Broadband Internet (per the FCC) is '4Mbps downstream and 1Mbps upstream'. Anything lower than this is not 'officially' broadband.

Lowering video settings (especially view distance) has the added benefit of lowering the amount of data your connection is asked to convey, as well, so even that can be a valid troubleshooting step.

If your 'Home' connection latency is low and your 'World' connection latency is high, that frequently indicates that there is some sort of QoS congestion controls being applied to your internet connection, at either the micro (LAN) or macro (WAN) level. A common symptom would be that you would be able to chat, but not to cast.

If both connections report high latency, that means your connection to our servers, in general, is almost completely saturated, or 'overflowing'. Without making any claims where that saturation lies, that seems to have been the most common case to date.

Please refer to our support pages (such as http://us.blizzard.com/support/artic...ategoryId=2329) or contact a technical support representative directly for further information and troubleshooting.

Patch 4.0.6 Latency Changes
BrianI also explained why some people saw their latency improve dramatically in 4.0.6, and how they had to revert the changes for the moment to keep everyone happy. The good news is: tons of improvements are coming!
Originally Posted by BrianI (Blue Tracker)
With 4.0.6 we made a couple changes to our instance servers in an attempt to lower latency. Unfortunately, with those changes came increased bandwidth requirements. Due to the nature of the feedback we received, we have temporarily reverted those changes, as of around ~6pm PST last night. Are you still experiencing issues?

Could you go into a little more detail on this? You said the change done with 4.0.6 caused a bandwidth problem but was said problem on my end, your end, or somewhere in between? If this change did cause a problem on my end how can I prepare for when it has been reimplemented?

In a nutshell? That's a bit hard to explain clearly, but I'll try. Some people have an ISP whose peering link to their tier 1 backbone provider is oversaturated. Some people have ISPs that are throttling their connection in some way. Some people are on wireless connections, or are using old routers that are causing issues. Some people simply have a misconfigured or malfunctioning LAN device. Some people just have lower bandwidth connections. I’ll explain further below.

Unequivocally, the bandwidth problems were not internal to our network. We never came close to capacity. The actual total peak transfer data rate was around 1/5th of our maximum capacity.

When we performed maintenance the day we released 4.0.6 we made a couple modifications to our instance (BG/arena/dungeon/raid) servers. One of these changes had the effect of lowering latency for a very high percentage of our users... around 99% or so. The numbers were pretty staggering, to be honest. My personal ‘instance server’ experience was a drop from 120-150ms average ping down to 12ms. No, really, 12 ms. From my home residential connection. It was amazing. Raiding was glorious. The vast majority of our users saw similar improvements.

Then again, I have a very stable high bandwidth cable connection with a well designed internal LAN, and I had no problems handling the requisite increases in bandwidth. You see, part of that reason the latency went down is that a lot more packets were being sent. In some cases, the bandwidth almost tripled. For those who don't (or can't) meet all of our minimum system requirements (e.g. broadband internet*) or who are having issues with their connection or are on a flaky wireless connection... things weren't so pretty. We ended up rolling back that change until a later date when we will be able to selectively turn on that performance enhancement on a ‘per client’ basis. Unfortunately, that will require another patch, so we’ll just have to wait a bit.

Yes, we really did roll back that change for something that negatively affected less than 1% of total users. We really do care about providing the best environment we can. We do things like this frequently.

We do understand that some people do not have the options available to them that others do. We know that people are playing on 6 to 8 year old computers (in some cases, even older) with a flaky 3G or satellite connection, even though this does not meet our minimum system requirements. Not everyone can afford newer or better and not all areas have a faster connection available, currently. We do see people connecting from all over the world from backbones that are throttling their connections due to the cost of transmitting data over transoceanic cables. We see all these things… and we feel some of the same frustrations these people do when trying to have a smooth gaming experience. It is actually difficult to be unable to help someone due to situations outside your control.

To be honest, World of Warcraft was not designed for these types of setups. That is why we are very clear with our ‘minimum system requirements’ and what, exactly, is supported. Will we still try to help you connect and do our best to help you out, anyway? Absolutely. We just can’t make any promises or guarantees, as much as we would like to. The actual bandwidth requirements are not that high. In ordinary play, WoW shouldn’t end up taking more than a few hundred megabytes a month. What is important, however, is the stability of the connection and width of the ‘pipe’, due to the bursts of data that need to be transmitted at times. While total bandwidth may not be high, there will be short periods where a ton of data is being sent simultaneously (like, you know, raid boss fights or even when first logging on to a server when your toon is in a capital city).

We may wish it were otherwise, but if we tried to send and receive less data we wouldn’t be able to provide the immersive, complex, top-notch gaming experience (most people) have come to know, love, and expect from Blizzard Entertainment. I wish there were some way to do both, but there really isn’t, at least with today’s technologies. Either we can provide an intense environment that over 98% of people who play WoW have no problems with, or we can lower our standards to unacceptable levels and try to get that extra ~2% in, as well.

Anyway, I apologize for the lengthy post, and I’m sure this will be lost in the thread, but I’ve been meaning to post some thoughts on this for awhile. I hope you’ve enjoyed the read… it was fun to type, at least.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Getting a GM Survey without a ticket response
This is a known issue and from what I understand, has to do with the limitations of the in-game mail system. We are, of course, working with our developers to find a solution. >^.^<

In the mean time, I do apologize for any confusion or inconvenience this may cause. We are definitely aware of the frustration an individual might feel if they see their petition disappear and receive a survey with seemingly no response. Remember that Game Masters will respond to each and every petition submitted, and be sure to always check your in-game mail before filling out a survey. (Source)

Paladin (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
Light of Dawn/Beacon of Light Bugfix
The hotfix note correctly describes what an attempt to fix a bug ended up changing, which was not actually the original intent. We're reverting the hotfix until we can fix the bug without causing Light of Dawn to no longer trigger Beacon. (Source)

The MMO Report
Let's start the week with a nice and warm MMO Report.



Comics
Dark Legacy Comics #275 and Teh Gladiators #210 + #211 are now available!

by Published on 2011-02-12 06:06 AM

Today has been a little crazy with blue announcements, more changes have been updated and I tried to make sure that you don't miss anything important!

Patch 4.0.6 Hotfixes and 4.0.6a Changes - Feb. 11 (Updated)
The list of hotfixes for today has been updated once again, new changes are in light blue.
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)
Here you'll find a list of hotfixes that address various issues related to the recently released World of Warcraft: Cataclysm patch 4.0.6. Hotfixes are updates we make on our end without requiring you to download a new patch. Some of the hotfixes below will go live the moment they are implemented, while others may require your realm to be restarted to go into effect. Please keep in mind that some issues cannot be addressed without a client-side patch update. We will continue to update this thread in the days ahead as additional hotfixes are applied. Visit our Bug Report forum for a list of 4.0.6 known issues.

February 11 (Patch 4.0.6a)

General
  • Players are no longer encountering errors when having their items bid on in the Auction House. The Auctions tab also updates appropriately reflecting the bid.
  • The South Island Iced Tea recipe no longer awards credit toward the Set the Oven to "Cataclysmic" or Time To Open A Restaurant guild achievements.
  • Players can now Ignore other characters from different realms or battlegroups when queuing for Battlegrounds or dungeons using the command: /ignore playername-servername(region). Note that the user interface Ignore function and "/ignore playername" command still do not work correctly for players on different battlegroups and will require a future patch to correct.
  • Releasing one's spirit after dying while on a transport or in a vehicle should no longer cause the player to disconnect.

Classes

Death Knight (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • Death's Advance may now not allow movement-impairing effects to reduce the death knight below 60/75% of normal movement speed, down from 75/100%.
  • Death and Decay no longer damages the death knight's currently selected friendly target when it does damage to nearby target dummies.

Druid (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • Starfall no longer exceeds 20 stars within its duration.
  • Moonfury (Balance druid passive) now increases Arcane and Nature damage by 10%, down from 15%. More information can be found here.
  • Mangle (Bear) and Maul (Bear) damage has been increased by approximately 10%.
  • Frost Nova, Tranquility, War Stomp, and Starfire are all properly scaled when used by or on a druid in Tree of Life form. The previous temporary hotfix which removed the ability to use War Stomp while in Tree of Life form has been reverted.

Hunter (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • Auto Shot was not firing while the hunter was moving under certain conditions. Auto Shot should now always function correctly while the hunter is moving.
  • Having a melee weapon equipped no longer causes the tooltips for Cobra Shot and Steady Shot to incorrectly display extra benefit from haste.
  • The cooldown for Master's Call has been increased to 45 seconds, up from 35. In addition, it can now be dispelled.
  • The Warp Stalker ability Time Warp can no longer be used on paladins with the Divine Shield buff active.

Mage (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • The Quad Core buff provided by the Sanctified Bloodmage 4-piece set bonus is now properly removed as soon as a spell is cast if the mage does not have 4 pieces of the set equipped.

Paladin (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • Beacon of Light no longer triggers from Light of Dawn.
  • Glyph of Dazing Shield correctly causes Avenger's Shield to daze the target, and only allows Avenger's Shield to trigger the dazed effect.
  • The area-of-effect attack of Hammer of the Righteous no longer has a chance to miss secondary targets when the primary attack hits the paladin's target. If the primary attack of Hammer of the Righteous fails to hit the target due to miss/dodge/parry/block, no enemies will be affected by the area-of-effect attack. Rogues who are under Cloak of Shadows, however, are able to resist this damage.
  • The Warp Stalker ability Time Warp can no longer be used on paladins with the Divine Shield buff active.

Priest (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • Inner Focus can no longer be cast before the effect of its preceding spell completes (Inner Focus will only be applied to spells that are cast after it).
  • Shadow Power (Shadow priest passive) now increases Shadow damage by 15%, down from 25%. More information can be found here.
  • Sin and Punishment now works properly when two players of the same faction are fighting each other (including in Arenas). A string error may appear when the opponent is feared even though the talent functions correctly.

Rogue (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • Combat Readiness now triggers from all ranged attacks.
  • Gouge is now breaking properly from spell and ability damage.


Warlock (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • All raid bosses are now properly immune to Suffering (Voidwalker taunt ability).

Warrior (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • Raging Blow has been reduced from 120% to 100% weapon damage at max level. More information can be found here.

Dungeons & Raids
Bastion of Twilight
  • The Elementium Monstrosity's health now more accurately reflects the state of the individual Ascendants.

Blackwing Descent
  • Drakeadon Mongrels can now be taunted.
  • The debuff from Pyreclaw's Flame Buffet now only lasts 8 seconds.
  • The Golem Sentry's Flash Bomb damage has been reduced in the 25-player version.
  • The health of Drakeadon Mongrels and Drakonid Slayers has been reduced in 10- and 25-player versions.
  • Nefarian's Blazing Inferno damage and knockdown radius has been reduced to match the spell effect graphic.

Items
  • Some Vicious Gladiator's weapons (item level 359) incorrectly had their costs increased. This has been corrected. Two-hand and ranged weapons now cost 3400 Conquest Points, while one-hand and caster weapons now cost 2450 Conquest Points.
  • All Vicious Gladiator's weapons (item level 372) have been temporarily removed from the Glorious Conquest Quartermasters until the time is right to officially introduce them into Azerothian society.

PvP
  • Many items incorrectly rendered unusable in rated Battlegrounds and Arenas have been made usable again.

Battlegrounds
  • Players should no longer sometimes gets stuck in the world and unable to login upon completing a rated Battleground.
  • Under certain conditions after queuing for Battlegrounds, players were still able to enter the Dungeon Finder queue. While this made it appear as though players were not actually queued properly for Battlegrounds, that wasn't the case. This issue has been fixed so that players cannot queue for both Battlegrounds and via the Dungeon Finder under these select circumstances.

Battle for Gilneas
  • The banners at each capture point now take 8 seconds to capture, up from 5. Note that when the banners are neutral and have not yet been captured by either faction at the start of a battle, they will display the wrong location names (Mine says Farm, Waterworks says Blacksmith, and Lighthouse says Stables).

Races
  • Gift of the Naaru now has a maximum limit to the amount healed when used on friendly NPCs with large amounts of health.

The Exalted Title
Originally Posted by Bashiok (Blue Tracker)
Recently we changed 'the Exalted' title to require 50 exalted titles up from 40, which meant those that had achieved it were now asked to get 10 more reputations to gain the title back. We felt this kept the title as a difficult reward given the additional reputations introduced with Cataclysm, and also avoided the problem of achievement inflation as the game continues to grow, devaluing the reward.

We didn’t let people know beforehand that we were making this change. A pretty cut and dry error on our part. We take full responsibility for not communicating the change properly, and apologize for the frustration it added to the situation. Unfortunately, that frustration in some people’s cases went to an extreme. Over the past couple days we’ve handed out innumerable suspensions to people who were unable to stay within the forum code of conduct while posting about this change. We of course understand passions can run hot, but some of the violations were extreme enough to remove people’s posting privileges permanently. It’s unfortunate because rational, calm, and constructive posting is the type of feedback that’s taken, discussed, and can help encourage real change. For those that were able to adhere to those posting ideals, we truly thank you for your efforts in keeping your cool.

We took your constructive posts and points, and after discussing the change for quite a while with the designers, the decision has been made to move ‘the Exalted’ title back to require 40 exalted reputations. We’re going to attempt this change with a hotfix, but are unsure at this time if it will be able to be applied through a hotfix. It’s possible that a client patch will be required. (We’ll let you know if it does.)

The 45 and 50 exalted reputation achievements will continue to exist, but for the time being won’t provide anything beyond achievement points. As some have questioned why the title isn’t grandfathered like ‘the Loremaster’ or ‘the Explorer’ titles, these function differently mechanically. While their requirements have changed, the actual achievement is the same. There’s no tech currently that allows us to give a title for an achievement and then move that title to a different achievement altogether and have people keep them. We are however working on such a technology that will allow players to keep items or titles associated with achievements even if we decide to change that criteria. So, say if we eventually decide to move ‘the Exalted’ title to an achievement which requires 60 reputations in the next expansion (just as an example), players who already earned the title at 40 reputations will get to keep the title when the criteria changes. This technology would allow us to let players keep titles or items they’ve already earned, while ensuring we don’t get stuck in a position where we have to continually generate new rewards just so those who earned them originally don’t lose them.

Thanks again for your feedback.

Incoming Hotfixes (Updated)
Originally Posted by Bashiok (Blue Tracker)
We’re in the process of planning for a number of hotfixes that are intended to be implemented within the next day or two. To help give some heads up notice we’re currently looking to make the following changes:


  • Shadow Power (Shadow priest passive) is being changed from 25% to 15% of Shadow damage.

  • Moonfury (Balance druid passive) is being changed from 15% to 6% Arcane and Nature damage.

  • Raging Blow reduced from 120% to 100% weapon damage at max level.

In all three cases we’ve been closely monitoring performance since the patch and all 3 specs are currently doing too much damage in PvE. In the case of Shadow and Fury we were also worried about their PvP burst potential, but didn’t want to risk affecting them in PvE. Now that we have concluded they are too high in PvE, both aspects of the game should feel more balanced.

We are also looking at nerfing Aimed Shot, but compensating hunters through Aspect of the Hawk. We are also likely to lower Arcane mage mana cost in some way, which will in turn buff their dps. These don’t have those specifics just yet, but do keep an eye on the 4.0.6 hotfix blog for these and other changes as they come through.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Death Knight (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
Chillbains & Diminishing Returns / Frost Spec
The root from the Chilblains talent being exempt from diminishing returns was a bug, which was resolved. In situations where shared diminishing returns are an issue, there are other tools available to Frost specced death knights to apply snares or otherwise close the gap. We think that death knight PvP mobility is in a good place now, but we're paying close attention.

We're also keeping a close eye on Frost single target dps at the moment. On a related note, it looks like Frost area of effect output is competitive, despite the changes to Howling Blast. We're also pretty happy with the layout of the Frost tree in general. (Source)
by Published on 2011-02-12 01:31 AM

Update - Balance nerf changed.
Originally Posted by Bashiok (Blue Tracker)
We think we overnerfed Balance. Some smart players have pointed out that Balance’s dps was inflated by a bug with Starfall that we have since fixed. With that in mind, we are changing the Moonfury nerf from 15% to 10% instead of 6%. This will be hotfixed soon™.

Incoming Hotfixes
Originally Posted by Bashiok (Blue Tracker)
We’re in the process of planning for a number of hotfixes that are intended to be implemented within the next day or two. To help give some heads up notice we’re currently looking to make the following changes:


  • Shadow Power (Shadow priest passive) is being changed from 25% to 15% of Shadow damage.

  • Moonfury (Balance druid passive) is being changed from 10% to 6% Arcane and Nature damage.

  • Raging Blow reduced from 120% to 100% weapon damage at max level.

In all three cases we’ve been closely monitoring performance since the patch and all 3 specs are currently doing too much damage in PvE. In the case of Shadow and Fury we were also worried about their PvP burst potential, but didn’t want to risk affecting them in PvE. Now that we have concluded they are too high in PvE, both aspects of the game should feel more balanced.

We are also looking at nerfing Aimed Shot, but compensating hunters through Aspect of the Hawk. We are also likely to lower Arcane mage mana cost in some way, which will in turn buff their dps. These don’t have those specifics just yet, but do keep an eye on the 4.0.6 hotfix blog for these and other changes as they come through.

http://us.battle.net/wow/en/blog/2259389#blog (the blog does not currently account for these intended hotfixes as they have not yet been applied)

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Death Knight (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
Recent DK changes
Going from 4.0.3 to 4.0.6, our goal was to lower Unholy death knight damage and raise mobility. Our 4.0.6 changes didn’t quite hit the mark (we undershot on damage and overshot on mobility), so we had to make additional adjustments. The nerfs to Death Coil and pet damage in 4.0.6 were never intended to compensate for the addition of Death's Advance, but were completely separate and PvE motivated. We felt that Unholy damage was too high in most PvE encounters, and it was necessary to reduce their dps output as a result. The mastery buff compensated for the intended adjustments a bit too much, so it was necessary to tune down those abilities again. An additional bug fix was also applied to Death and Decay that should not affect damage and was not a part of these balance adjustments.

Death's Advance was included to help address Unholy death knight mobility issues in PvP, but it turned out to be too effective, and so it was toned down. It should still help increase up-time on PvP targets though.

While these changes were up on PTR, we tend to get limited testing - particularly when there isn't new raid content to test - and the PTR is often of limited value for PvP testing. While we appreciate the efforts of the players who participated and sent us feedback, it’s still a relatively small sample size compared to the millions of players who experience the changes when they actually go live. Deploying quick fixes, especially nerfs, isn’t always popular among players, but when they're possible, we think it’s a better course of action in the long run than letting balance problems persist. We’ll continue to monitor these and other class issues and periodically step in as necessary. (Source)

Paladin (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
Hammer of the Righteous bug fix
This change to Hammer of the Righteous was a bug fix. Before the change, if the main attack missed the area attack also missed. If the main attack hit, the area attack could still miss.

Now, if the main attack misses the area attack also misses, but if the main attack hits, the area attack also hits. This means there is only one hit/miss roll for the attack, as opposed to two before.

We like that the design of this ability is different from other AoE attacks which have individual attack rolls. Hammer of the Righteous is a single attack with splash damage and we don't see a reason to change its design at this time. We just wanted to fix the consistency issue.(Source)
by Published on 2011-02-11 01:19 PM

Update - Blizzard slightly updated these notes with more changes, the new lines have been highlighted in green.

Patch 4.0.6 Hotfixes and 4.0.6a Changes - Feb. 11
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)
Here you'll find a list of hotfixes that address various issues related to the recently released World of Warcraft: Cataclysm patch 4.0.6. Hotfixes are updates we make on our end without requiring you to download a new patch. Some of the hotfixes below will go live the moment they are implemented, while others may require your realm to be restarted to go into effect. Please keep in mind that some issues cannot be addressed without a client-side patch update. We will continue to update this thread in the days ahead as additional hotfixes are applied. Visit our Bug Report forum for a list of 4.0.6 known issues.

February 11 (Patch 4.0.6a)

General
  • Players are no longer encountering errors when having their items bid on in the Auction House. The Auctions tab also updates appropriately reflecting the bid.

Classes

Death Knight (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • Death's Advance may now not allow movement-impairing effects to reduce the death knight below 60/75% of normal movement speed, down from 75/100%.
  • Death and Decay no longer damages the death knight's currently selected friendly target when it does damage to nearby target dummies.

Druid (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)

Hunter (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • Auto Shot was not firing while the hunter was moving under certain conditions. Auto Shot should now always function correctly while the hunter is moving.
  • Having a melee weapon equipped no longer causes the tooltips for Cobra Shot and Steady Shot to incorrectly display extra benefit from haste.
  • The cooldown for Master's Call has been increased to 45 seconds, up from 35. In addition, it can now be dispelled.
  • The Warp Stalker ability Time Warp can no longer be used on paladins with the Divine Shield buff active.

Mage (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • The Quad Core buff provided by the Sanctified Bloodmage 4-piece set bonus is now properly removed as soon as a spell is cast if the mage does not have 4 pieces of the set equipped.

Paladin (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • Glyph of Dazing Shield correctly causes Avenger's Shield to daze the target, and only allows Avenger's Shield to trigger the dazed effect.
  • The area-of-effect attack of Hammer of the Righteous no longer has a chance to miss secondary targets when the primary attack hits the paladin's target. If the primary attack of Hammer of the Righteous fails to hit the target due to miss/dodge/parry/block, no enemies will be affected by the area-of-effect attack. Rogues who are under Cloak of Shadows, however, are able to resist this damage.
  • The Warp Stalker ability Time Warp can no longer be used on paladins with the Divine Shield buff active.

Priest (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • Inner Focus can no longer be cast before the effect of its preceding spell completes (Inner Focus will only be applied to spells that are cast after it).
  • Sin and Punishment now works properly when two players of the same faction are fighting each other (including in Arenas). A string error may appear when the opponent is feared even though the talent functions correctly.

Rogue (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • Gouge is now breaking properly from spell and ability damage.


Warlock (Forums / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • All raid bosses are now properly immune to Suffering (Voidwalker taunt ability).

Dungeons & Raids
Blackwing Descent
  • Drakeadon Mongrels can now be taunted.
  • The debuff from Pyreclaw's Flame Buffet now only lasts 8 seconds.
  • The Golem Sentry's Flash Bomb damage has been reduced in the 25-player version.
  • The health of Drakeadon Mongrels and Drakonid Slayers has been reduced in 10- and 25-player versions.
  • Nefarian's Blazing Inferno damage and knockdown radius has been reduced to match the spell effect graphic.

Items
  • Some Vicious Gladiator's weapons (item level 359) incorrectly had their costs increased. This has been corrected. Two-hand and ranged weapons now cost 3400 Conquest Points, while one-hand and caster weapons now cost 2450 Conquest Points.
  • All Vicious Gladiator's weapons (item level 372) have been temporarily removed from the Glorious Conquest Quartermasters until the time is right to officially introduce them into Azerothian society.

PvP
  • Many items incorrectly rendered unusable in rated Battlegrounds and Arenas have been made usable again.

Battlegrounds
Battle for Gilneas
  • The banners at each capture point now take 8 seconds to capture, up from 5. Note that when the banners are neutral and have not yet been captured by either faction at the start of a battle, they will display the wrong location names (Mine says Farm, Waterworks says Blacksmith, and Lighthouse says Stables).

Races
  • Gift of the Naaru now has a maximum limit to the amount healed when used on friendly NPCs with large amounts of health.
by Published on 2011-02-11 09:06 AM

Archaeology Dig Sites - New Dig Sites and Updated Table
Patch 4.0.6 increased the amount of dig sites in-game and made the farming of Tol'vir artifacts a little easier! A couple of Nerubian dig sites have also been added in Eastern Kingdoms and Northrend.

Tol'vir Sites added in 4.0.6 (Uldum)
  • River Delta Digsite
  • Cursed Landing Digsite
  • Keset Pass Digsite
  • Akhenet Fields Digsite
  • Obelisk of the Stars Digsite
  • Sahket Wastes Digsite
  • Schnottz's Landing

Nerubian Sites added in 4.0.6 (Northrend)
  • Pit of Fiends Digsite (Icecrown)
  • Sands of Nasam (Borean Tundra)

Nerubian Sites added in 4.0.6 (Eastern Plaguelands)
  • Terrorweb Tunnel Digsit
  • Plaguewood Digsite


The new Archaeology spawn rates are as follow, thanks to Simca for that wonderful table:

RacesEastern Kingdoms (Pre-450)Eastern Kingdoms (Post-450)Kalimdor (Pre-450)Kalimdor (Post-450)OutlandNorthrend
Dwarf28.57%32.73%2.08%1.45%N/AN/A
Fossil26.53%23.64%27.08%18.84%N/AN/A
Night Elf4.08%3.64%62.50%50.72%N/A13.79%
Troll40.82%36.36%8.33%5.80%N/A17.24%
DraeneiN/AN/AN/AN/A53.57%N/A
OrcN/AN/AN/AN/A46.43%N/A
NerubianN/A3.64%N/AN/AN/A24.14%
VrykulN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A44.83%
Tol'virN/AN/AN/A23.19%N/AN/A



"New" changes!
Originally Posted by Bashiok (Blue Tracker)
I found an old notebook in a box and so I wanted to share some changes we're expecting to come through.

In patch 1.10 we're going to make it so that when you're at level cap completing quests will turn XP into gold. So that should be a good change, there will still be a reason to complete quests at max level. We're also going to update some items. In BRD almost all items are going to become blue quality, so that should be a nice upgrade for people. Also all bracers, belts, and gloves will be BoE. Which should help get more people geared up through the AH to tackle this difficult dungeon.

We'll keep you updated should we find any other old notes that are no longer new or exciting.

[...] To expand on Bashiok's feedback, we'd also like to note that we're happy right now with priests feeling unique via their racial abilities. It's compelling gameplay for dwarf priests to get to keep Fear Ward to themselves.

These are some good changes, but can we get a better way to manage keys? I hate having to cripple my inventory space by making room for keys, there should really be a keychain or keyring of some kind...
We like the physical nature of holding keys in your bags and bank. That said we are trying to reduce the number of keys given by attunements and required to enter dungeons and the like. In the future we hope that keys will be mostly temporary items, although that is subject to change. We're also trying to keep better tabs on the number of equippable items we're creating that dual-purpose as keys.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Item Level Requirements in Instances
The item level requirement was added to help players better gauge whether or not they might be ready to take on that content. We were seeing a lot of issues before where people were upset that someone was in a group that just didn't have the gear to take on the encounters. Or conversely they (personally) were upset that they didn't seem to be able to overcome an instance despite thinking they were ready for it. So, we've sort of baked in a system to better identify "readiness". It's merely a tool to indicate possible preparedness, not an indicator of skill or lack of skill.

We've mentioned it before, but it doesn't hurt to repeat, that we have been putting some thought into easing the requirement for premade or guild groups in the dungeon finder since those groups may want to help carry a lesser geared player through the encounter and generally have better overall coordination for achieving the completion of the dungeon. (Source)

Low level balance
The designers are actually actively looking over some of the lower level balance to try to ensure that those who either actively play those brackets or level up through them are having a good, balanced time. Most of the changes made were to serve the questing experience and introduction of abilities to new players, but certainly there's a possibility for some changes to be made and still keep that goal. (Source)

Heroic gear should drop randomly!
That's kind of the point of ... points (justice/valor). Even if you're not getting what you want you're eventually getting what you want. More or less. You'd also be blowing out drop tables to a pretty insane degree. Not too bad for a game like Diablo. Pretty bad for a game like WoW.

Also that system of allowing any boss to drop any item in Diablo II really encouraged some very bad forms of gameplay. It devolved into doing 'runs' of the easiest or most efficient bosses. Not exactly interesting. It's something we're actively trying to avoid repeating with Diablo III, and not something we'd want to encourage in World of Warcraft. (Source)

Bug - Treants sharing the same texture
The issue where all treant models share the same texture (including Withers and the Teldrassil Sproutling) is something we're aware of and we're hoping to resolve soon. (Source)

White Talbuk "bug" in 4.0.6
Correct! We discovered that the wrong texture had been applied to the White War Talbuks horns n hooves, but since we liked it, and you guys liked it, and it felt like a good fit for the art design in Outland, we decided to keep it.

[...] As it happens, you'll get to enjoy the new textures for a bit longer. Since this issue isn't something that can be hotfixed, we currently expect the talbuk to return to its former state with a future patch. (Source)

Nerfnow - Holy Cows
Nerfnow.com posted an interesting WoW-related comic earlier this week.


Site Navigation