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by Published on 2013-06-23 05:11 PM

Blossoming Ancient Giveaway: PMs have gone out to the winners. You have 72 hours to reply if you won.

Update: Dave Kosak confirmed that we get some kind of legendary before we kill Garrosh for the quest line.

Archon on Demon Hunters and Powerful Builds, The Art of TeknoKyo Customs, Curse Weekly Roundup

Patch 5.4 - Legendary Quest Line Update
Wrathion is back again in Patch 5.4, first asking you to meet him at the Tavern. He has learned of the new Timeless Isle added in Patch 5.4 and wants to further augment your cloak by "time-locking" it.

You will have to head to Timeless Isle and collect 50 x Timeless Coin for one step in the quest. While you are doing that, you also have to defeat the four August Celestials of Pandaria in combat, which likely requires a group.

Once you have completed both steps, you head to the Seat of Knowledge so that Wrathion can augment your cloak once more. This will likely use the upgraded cloak models added a few patches ago.

After having your cloak upgraded, there is one final quest to kill Garrosh. Wrathion reveals to you that this was his plan all along, but he has no more rewards for you. The Golden Lotus may have a reward for you though, but the current rewards on the quest are just placeholders and it isn't part of the legendary quest line.

Wrathion's audio isn't in yet, but the audio for the Celestials is!

Raid Testing Schedule - June 24-25
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
On Monday, June 24, and Tuesday, June 25, we will begin our testing of raid encounters in the Siege of Orgrimmar raid. We'll begin with 10-player Normal testing, and then move on to Heroic and then 25-player mode as the PTR cycle progresses.

Each encounter should be available at approximately the listed times below for all Public Test Realms.

Monday, June 24
Fallen Protectors - 10 Player Normal - 10:30 PDT (13:30 EDT, 19:30 CEST)
Kor'kron Dark Shaman - 10 Player Normal - 16:00 PDT (19:00 EDT, 01:00 CEST)

Tuesday, June 25
Immerseus - 10 Player Normal - 10:30 PDT (13:30 EDT, 19:30 CEST)
General Nazgrim - 10 Player Normal 16:00 PDT (19:00 EDT, 01:00 CEST)

As this is our first testing session of many to come, there is probably a slightly higher than usual risk of bugs or other issues interfering with the planned testing, so thank you in advance for your patience. If you're unable to participate in this session, don't worry, there will be plenty of other opportunities to check out these bosses. Also note that several of the art assets and sound associated with the encounters being tested are non-final, but we'd like to get started testing and gathering data and feedback on the mechanics as early as possible in the process.

As always, this testing schedule is very fluid and subject to the realities of a beta environment. We might have to change the time of a testing session, change the boss being tested, or cancel a test entirely, due to bugs, server hardware issues, etc. Keep an eye on this forum for the latest information, and thank you in advance for testing and providing feedback.

Important Testing Notes
Q: How do I get into the raid zone?
A: In northeastern Vale of Eternal Blossoms, in the exposed foundations of the Mogu'shan Palace, there is a staircase descending towards an instance portal. That is the entrance to the Siege of Orgrimmar raid.

Q: What gear do I use to test the raid?
A: Whatever gear you have. As we did for Throne of Thunder raid testing, we will be scaling players' gear inside the raid in order to facilitate testing. Gear will be scaled (up or down, as appropriate) for the purposes of testing the encounters, depending on difficulty and their location within the zone.

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Character / Items
Can you say anything about new character models? I'm sure you get asked this a lot. But even a maybe will make my day!
There is no maybe. It's happening. We just haven't announced when it will be done. The Pandaren model alone took months. (Source)

Need a non-RNG "salaried" character advancement. RNG should only be used for "bonus" advancement.
The non RNG element is supposed to be Valor. (Source)

2hand to polearm transmog will be on 5.4?
Hopefully. I can't promise. (Source)

Is there any reason why the legendary cloak is unique? As ms healer I would love to buy one for my ret os for brawlers guild.
Do you mean the epic cloaks? (Source)
yeah i havent encountered this yet but that does seem odd. i can get tank/dps meta but only one cape?
No promises, but I could see changing that rule. It is a little harsh for hybrids. (Source)

Can u elaborate what you mean by end-game gearing direction? It was pretty stream-lined in the past
In the past it was so streamlined that WoW ceased to feel like an MMO. It was an instance-based game, in our opinion. (Source)
It's hard to see how you can make the gearing process take a variety of actions but also make it streamlined at the same time
MoP fixed that by offering a lot of outdoor content and other options but it was a crazy quilt that was hard to navigate. (Source)
in MoP, it was hard for some players to navigate the end game gearing options. We didn't provide enough direction at 90. (Source)
Particularly when e.g. 5.2 came out and it wasn't clear if you were supposed to run older 5.0 content or newer 5.2 stuff. (Source)

is there any chance to avoid drops at 10man that doesnt fit to anybody in raid? Like: "no rogues" then "no dagger(agi)"
What if you then stacked 8 rogues to make sure your real rogue had a good chance at a dagger? (Source)
We don't want you to feel obligated to game your comp to try to force different loot options. (Source)

LFR does not count as increasing raid participation, this flawed assumption is hurting the game (+participation=durable subs)
Why is it hurting the game? It gives many players something fun to do that they didn't have access to before. (Source)

His main point about LFR is "2 days played time at 90 and i've killed Lei Shen already. what's left in the game?"
How about content that actually challenges you? If that's not your thing, then stick to LFR. Everyone's happy? (Source)

It's the fact that so many players are now simply content to do LFR, and it's harder to find normal raiders.
Most of the players doing LFR just didn't raid at all before. They were never really eligible for recruitment. (Source)

and the trivial nature of seeing completing content /no difficulty curve in general is negatively impacting that.
In my experience, most players complaining about LFR aren't doing so with the noble goal of the new player experience. (Source)
They didn't claim to be noble. Just that they believe LFR reduces interest in tier quickly & hurts raid recruiting.
Maybe, though I suspect some of it is they feel LFR devalues their raiding accomplishments or it just offends them. (Source)

do you feel that LFR has limited the mechanics we can see in bosses? I doubt we'll ever see a Chimaeron or Atramedes again
Or normal and heroic can just have different mechanics.... (Source)

It is definitly worth the cost cause it's way more fun. No one talks now. What was wrong with the LFG tool in TBC?
It wasn't fun to spend your night of WoW hoping an Arcatraz group would form. Could literally be your whole night. (Source)

Heroic Raids
Those who want challenges have heroic raids; you held this view in WotLK, and now it's changed. Worth the cost?
Challenges are very personal. Normal raiding may be challenging for me but gold challenge modes are for you. (Source)
But that felt bad both for players who had accomplished a lot and those who never got to finish. (Source)
This gets back to progression - as long as everyone has some, players tend to be happy. Everyone need not be at the same place. (Source)

Only 1% of players are playing in hardmodes: are you absolutely sure, game needs them?
Yes. I don't think your arguments here work. You are equating popularity with whether something is good for the game. (Source)
For example, an invulnerability toggle in the outdoor world would, I bet, be very popular. It's hard to argue the game needs it. (Source)

I was always a fan of "hardmode via approach (Ulduar)" Not sure if I love or hate flexraids yet...Only one way to find out...
Ulduar, was cool, but we could only do the "interesting approach" so many different ways. We even copped out on Mimiron. (Source)
I dont know, being the guy that pushed the big red button that said "dont push" was kinda fun.
No doubt. But don't you think it would lose its charm if Horridon and Durumu and Iron Qon all had big red buttons too? (Source)

Not being able to do any scenarios until I've gotten some friends together to do a heroic scenario that day really bites
We are reconsidering that design. We were trying to give players less to do, but the problem you describe may be worse. (Source)

How about we skip 3-4 months over widespread debate and just make the H Scenario's "random-able"?
Because then everyone will demand we nerf the difficulty or let them kick the players that offend them. (Source)

I do want to debunk the myth that hard content (with no other options) will force socialization. (Source)
We are experimenting with that idea a bit with heroic scenarios. We'll see what the response is. (Source)

Re: Cataclysm heroic dungeons. As a player, I liked them. I like strategy > gogogo. (Source)
But, Cat dungeon difficulty did not play well with random matchmaking, and those players felt like we offered them no alternatives. (Source)
One strategy is to hope players stick with the tough dungeons but bail on the random matchmaking and find friends and guilds to run them. (Source)
But that's not what happened. A lot of players just gave up on heroic dungeons and then had no other PvE endgame. (Source)

Fast food since cata, MoP did a great change, but still lacks enough non-raiding content outside of leveling.
We haven't yet found anything else that provides the longevity of raiding. Possibly completing PvP Conquest gear. (Source)

why is it that we see this attitude of "more difficulties = more content" when it really doesn't? it seems to cause less
I could see that argument in the ToC era, but ToT is a big raid (and so is the next one). (Source)

In old days you were able to get tier sets and good nonsets via VP. Isn't is what players want now?
We wanted looting the boss itself to be more exciting. Valor eclipsed the dragon horde. (Source)

What's the reasoning behind CDs resetting after kill/wipe if >5 min, but not if >3 min?
We felt by the time you recovered and rebuffed that 3 min wasn't long to wait. (Source)

Id have to say that this expansion's dungeons are the least unique of any expansion to date. Rehashed plus reused.
Gate, Brewery and Jade were dungeons first that were inserted into the outside world for consistency. (Source)
Siege IIRC was added after the outside world was done. (Source)

Imperfect, but a quick and dirty analysis of what you're doing to raiding.
We appreciate the effort, but it's comparing raids at very different points in their life cycles. (Source)
Totally - it's the inference from T14 and on that people seem dramatically more willing to give up than before.
Your data (I assume that's you) doesn't show player willingness to give up though. It shows boss kills. (Source)
Then how do you explain the dramatic drop off in raiders starting the expansion with a boss kill and not moving to Jin'rokh?
Part of it is that the new tier requires higher ilevel (literally in the case of LFR) and not everyone is there yet. (Source)
No, thats not part of it. Jinrohk started with 20k kills and has 23k ones now. You wont see a flux of ppl doing it
I don't understand where the 20K number is coming from. Is that a theoretical example? (Source)
http://t.co/TjFIpnls8b 20k was what Jinrohk had after 4 weeks and its both 10 and 25 man.
I should add that I am excluding LFR and I am talking about accounts not alts in those examples. (Source)
So, slower gear catch up, less alts and linear raids are the cause of the drop, not difficulty? That seems your implication.
Not sure how alts figures into it. Our data suggests difficulty is about where it has been for some time. (Source)
You guys can debate whether finishing an old tier first or jumping right to a new tier is more fun. Not cut and dried IMO. (Source)
But faster patches and no instant catch up means guilds can't switch on a dime to a new raid tier, which they could in Cat. (Source)
I prefer the cata way. I really wonder if you just listened to an echo chamber those days.
The problem we had then was players would give up quickly on a tough boss because they knew a new patch would bring tons of gear. (Source)
It was if they were just gearing from patches and not from killing bosses. That's an effective but not very fun way to play. (Source)

In the (recent) past we would have immediately invalidated all previous content when a new patch hit. (Source)
ToT LFR felt like it invalidated T14N, was that the intention or should they have been efficient catch-up raids?
LFR makes it very complicated to have traditional normal tier progression. (Source)
Even if you ignore the gear, it's a little weird to be fighting N Sha of Fear in and killing LFR Lei Shen at the same time. (Source)

In MoP we tried for a slightly more vanilla feel where you finish 5.0 before going to 5.2. We provide more catch up than vanilla. (Source)
The problem with MoP catch up is that it's entirely random; there's literally no guarantee a player will ever get gear up.
Most of our rewards are random. As long as the income rate is okay, it works out. (Source)

I thought the new coin system was in to prevent bad streaks, I used 3 coins last week and 2 so far this week and still nothing
Our concern is that player expectation is to get loot frequently, but epics are just about the best reward we have in the game. (Source)
That's the biggest problem of raiding - casuals want to get loot at 5ppl's rate. That's why LFR can't replace 5ppls.
There is some truth to that. To earn a new boss kill in normal might take hours, maybe days. In LFR you burn through it all fast. (Source)

Are you happy with world bosses? Or wont we see many more in the next expacs?
We're happy with the "easy" Sha / Nalak verion. Still iterating on the "harder" version: Galleon / Oondasta. There will be more. (Source)

Weekly News Recap
Lots of news this week, so here is your chance to catch up!

by Published on 2013-06-22 09:04 AM

White Items on PC, Community Commentary: Post-1.0.8 Farming Routes, Blizzcon Art Contest Rules

Patch 5.4 - Tier 16 Mage and Season 14 Paladin Sets
Keep in mind that this is just a preview and the final sets may be different!

Patch 5.4 Raid Finder Item Level Requirement
Currently on the PTR the Siege of Orgrimmar raid requires item level 496 to queue. Keep in mind this can and will likely change, as it started at 500 in a previous build.

Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
  • Vale of Eternal Sorrows - Venture through the scarred Vale of Eternal Blossoms, exploring unearthed mogu ruins to discover the source of the destruction.
  • Gates of Retribution - War has come to the gates of Orgrimmar, as Alliance forces and the Darkspear Rebellion seek revenge against Garrosh Hellscream.
  • The Underhold - Within a secret Kor'kron base carved into the sweltering caverns beneath Orgrimmar, Garrosh is assembling his ultimate army.
  • Downfall - Wielding the dark power that lay dormant beneath Pandaria, Garrosh seeks to bring a new order to Azeroth. He must be stopped!

Patch 5.3 Hotfixes - June 21
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Raids, Dungeons, and Scenarios
  • Throne of Thunder
    • Ji-Kun
      • The Golden Egg can now only be passed to other players.
      • The Soft Hands achievement should now be properly awarded to Priests in Spirit of Redemption form as well as players that are dead.
  • Dungeons
    • Resetting a Challenge Mode will now reset the cooldowns for Invisibility and Lesser Invisibility Potions.

  • Xan'tish's Flute now should properly only able to be used once every 5 minutes and cannot be used while the character is dead.

Isle of Thunder
  • Fixed an issue where players were sometimes unable to use incantations to summon bosses.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Qiraji Guardling Spawn Rate
Increase the spawn rate of the pet that spawns only in summer in Silithus please, with CRZ, there are just too many ninjars so there's no point even trying.
It's supposed to be fairly rare. The spawn rate is determined while factoring in things like zone population (including how many people are coalesced cross-realm). Competition is to be expected.

These are things to consider when frustrated by not catching a rare spawn within the first few hours it starts spawning for the season.

There's a difference between "supposed to be rare" and frustrating game design. Frustrating game design is saying we're ok with having 100's of people farming the same location for hours, days, months, years...etc...because...we want it to be rare. Not frustrating game design is when its rare but you're only competing with a few people because you chose a server to begin with that is not high pop - just medium.
You make a good point in your first couple of sentences, and that's something we're evaluating. That said, I don't agree with your conclusion that the "good game design" option is the one where the world is just under populated to the point that competition isn't much of a factor. Having low-pop realms wasn't a design decision -- it's a symptom of numerous variables. It's not acceptable for us to say that game design should be such that players can decide how rare something actually is by choosing the most accommodating realm to play on.

What we want to do is continue to ensure the world feels populated, but that seeing people around you doesn't always feel like a negative thing. You've seen some of this in the way we've been experimenting with mob tapping the last couple of patches. Seeing people from your own faction in the world, especially, should be more of a positive thing. It's part of the fiction that you're supposed to be allies, not nuisances to each other.

We don't have any specific plans to share for how we might change the way rare pet spawns work, though competition is likely to remain an inherent factor. But we'll continue to look for ways we can mitigate some of the annoyances of competing for some types of rare spawns with large numbers of players.

It's important to note, however, that tinkering with these types of design decisions requires a metaphorical scalpel, when most of the feedback we get is akin to demanding the use of a butcher knife. No, we're not going to hastily redesign entire systems in the game because people are interested in catching a rare spawn, and can't all seem to succeed within less than 24 hours out of the (approximately) 2160 hours it has a chance to spawn this year.

Why? What benefit is served by having open world pets be so difficult to find?
There are hundreds of pets out in the world, most of which are easily caught. Rarity is a big part of what makes some pets more valued and desirable than others.

Follow-up questions:

Do you need this one? Should everyone be entitled to obtain any pet in the world with ease?

If it's a pet that spawns during a 3-month window, what percentage of people who try to get it in the first 24 hours should succeed? Even if it's 99%, would this thread not still be filled with complaints from the 1% who keep failing? (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Raid Mount Drops
There is a difference between removing a reward without advance notice, which is something we do indeed want to avoid doing, and introducing rewards that are stated up-front as being limited-time-availability (e.g., Gladiator mounts, the Kor'kron War Wolf, WoW Anniversary companion pets, etc.).

We want to strike a balance between permanently available rewards that encourage players to go back and revisit content at a later date, and carving out some things that signify an accomplishment in a particular time and place. Years from now, when people see you riding a Kor'kron War Wolf, they'll know that you defeated Garrosh when he was the biggest threat to the safety of Azeroth. There's something to be said for that.

There will be two other mounts from the Siege of Orgrimmar raid that will be available via more conventional means: First, there's the Reins of Galakras from the "Glory of the Orgrimmar Raider" achievement, which will no longer require Heroic boss kills, and thus be available to any interested players who can pass the various skill checks involved, on Flexible mode or above. (This also lets Heroic raiders who want the achievements or associated mount pursue those goals without compromising their Heroic progression or gear needs, as many of our "kill the boss in an unusual way" achievements have unfortunately tended to be nearly impossible to do on Heroic while the content is relevant.)

Second, there will be a separate 100% drop mount from Heroic Garrosh, which will eventually be reduced to ~2% once the fight can be overpowered, in the same vein as Invincible or Mimiron's Head.

Not a fan of removing the heroic kill requirement from the Glory meta. The glory metas have been a nice reward for heroic raiders in previous tiers when there wasn't a 100% heroic drop mount.
But there is a 100% Heroic drop mount (yes, more than one will drop on 25-player kills). And we'd like to offer those more consistently going forward. I'd say it was a misstep on our part that Heroic Sha of Fear and Heroic Lei Shen did not offer one.

The "Glory of the ____ Raider" achievements honestly have not made much sense or worked out particularly well for quite a while now. That structure was designed in a world with a single difficulty (3.0 Naxxramas), where guilds that had the zone on farm could make things harder and more interesting for themselves as they pursued those supplementary goals for a cosmetic reward.

But nowadays we have Heroic mode, and as I mentioned above, a good number of achievements aren't really compatible with Heroic mode when done at the intended gear level (I'd like to meet the group that did "Like an Arrow to the Face" on Heroic mode during 5.0/5.1). The result is that the people who get Glory of the Raider achievements are a subset of those who finish the entire zone on Heroic while it is relevant. And often those people don't even get the achievement during that tier. Guilds will either take a week off from Heroic clearing after completing the zone and do an achievement run (often to the chagrin of raid members who don't particularly care about achievement points or mounts and would much rather have a chance at a Heroic Thunderforged weapon upgrade), or wait until the next tier entirely, and then go back with a smaller group and get the achievements on Normal. That really isn't what the "Glory of the Raider" achievements were intended to be.

Without the need to worry at all about even the pretense of making them fair or completable on Heroic mode, we can also make sure that the achievements generally require a certain baseline level of execution (a la "Show Me Your Moves!" or "The Mind-Killer") that will keep them feeling challenging and rewarding. The original Wrath of the Lich King 5-player dungeons were not terribly challenging, yet many of the original Glory of the Hero achievements certainly were in their time. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Hunter (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Patch 5.4 Hunter Changes
So what do you guys think of the readiness change? I personally think they are finally tackling the problem and readiness and other class equivalents makes balancing the game extra messy, but I'd like to hear your views!
Having 3 “trinkets” was definitely messy; I think hunters really needed this change. We just need to make sure that this isn’t one of those cases where something was so overpowered that its removal means we have to buff it somewhere else to keep everything in balance.
Feedback from the PTR will be very important at this stage, if you have the time please do tell us what you think, is there a need to compensate for this nerf somewhere else, or is there any other class/ability that you think might be flying under our radar? (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Hearthstone Beta Patch
Hearthstone was patched today, adding some achievements and making many changes to the cards, including the new class card backgrounds!

by Published on 2013-06-21 08:29 AM

Saving Games on Different Consoles, Dodging with a Controller, E3 Interview with Josh Mosqueira

In Dust We Trust - Crafting in Hearthstone

Patch 5.4 World Changes
This build brought a few more changes to Orgrimmar and Razor Hill. There are some new NPCs in Orgrimmar, as well as increase amounts of troops. Garrosh has abandoned his throne and is nowhere to be found. Vol'jin and Baine now also have a conversation in Razor Hill.

Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
Vol'jin: Almost all of da troops be here now.
Baine Bloodhoof: I am uneasy, old firend.
Vol'jin: An me as well. We dun know what Garrosh been plannin this whole time. What he's got in store for us.
Baine Bloodhoof: I fear for the safety of our people.
Vol'jin: Not everyone gonna come out of this alive.
Baine Bloodhoof: And for what? What did the Horde gain from such actions? Garrosh is a fool, and a betrayer. I should have killed him long ago, when he betrayed my father.
Vol'jin: You gonna get your chance mon. But first we gotta take da city.
Baine Bloodhoof: Have you been communicating with the humans?
Vol'jin: Both da alliance and da horde got ships sailin for da harbor. We gonna split der forces an assault da front gate.
Baine Bloodhoof: A bold plan. Let us hope we do not run into any surprises.
Vol'jin: I don't think we got a choice, mon.

Midsummer Fire Festival 2013
Don't forget that the Midsummer Fire Festival begins this morning! This year offers updated item level 480 loot. You can find a nice guide over on Icy Veins, and a list of coordinates in Aliok's guide on WoWDB.

Level Type Spec Slot Name
480BackTankBack Icebound Cloak
480BackMeleeBack The Frost Lord's Battle Shroud
480BackSpell SpiritBack Cloak of the Frigid Winds
480BackPhysical DPSBack The Frost Lord's War Cloak
480BackSpell DPSBack Shroud of Winter's Chill
480StaffSpell DPSTwo Hand Frostscythe of Lord Ahune

Patch 5.4 PTR Notes Update - June 20
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
  • All taunt type abilities now increase all threat generated against the target while the taunt is active by 200%.

  • The Strength of One's Foes: For players on this step of the legendary quest; all Throne of Thunder bosses now have a chance to drop a Sigil of Power or Sigil of Wisdom in addition to their normal loot. Players should no longer be receiving excess Sigils of Power or Sigils of Wisdom.

Pet Battles
  • Round timers in PvP Pet Battles will now get progressively shorter for a player who takes more than 15 seconds to issue a command during their turn.

Battle Pets
  • Any Battle Pet that could be awarded from a Throne of Thunder boss on Raid Finder difficulty can now be won from a bonus roll, in addition to the standard bonus roll reward.

Battle Pet Abilities
  • Trihorn Charge damage has been reduced by 11.5% and now has a 1-round cooldown.

  • [PTR]: For testing purposes, the item level scaling of gear in Arenas, Battlegrounds and Rated Battlegrounds has been increased to 512 during the 5.4 PTR. Season 14 Grievous Conquest gear is exempt from this item level ceiling.

Battlegrounds and Arenas
  • For Arena matches lasting longer than 15 minutes, one of the teams will receive a buff called "The Crowd Chose You" that increases damage, critical strike chance, stealth detection, and reduces damage taken. The buff is awarded based on the following criteria.
    • Team with the largest number of players alive.
    • Team that brought an enemy player closest to death (lowest health).
  • Arena Rating scaling in the 2v2 bracket has been tuned to be consistent with the 3v3 bracket.

  • [PTR]: For testing purposes, Flaskataur, Esq. will be available near the Niuzao Temple selling normal Tier-16 armor for gold.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Casting While Moving
I think the concept largely stems from the idea that casting a spell takes an extreme amount of concentration. Imagine, for example, a chef preparing a meal and chopping up a bunch of potatoes or something. Now imagine him doing it at a brisk jog. Somehow that seems... unsafe, at best.

Obviously there are gameplay reasons why a spell would be castable while moving, but even then, one could argue that part of the "strength" of that spell is the ability to do so. Maybe a Lightning Bolt is fairly easy for a Shaman to cast while standing still, but it takes a lot of focus to be able to fire one off while running. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

PTR Realm Maintenance - 6/20/13
are proving grounds going to be in this build?
Proving Grounds testing is going to come a bit later in the test phase. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Paladin (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Patch 5.4 Holy Paladin Changes
Hi there Jmax, I'm here with more information from our developers to provide more context behind some of the recent changes to Holy Paladins on the 5.4 PTR.

Intent behind the Eternal Flame change

We’ve made some changes to Eternal Flame because we feel the talent was being overrepresented within the Holy Paladin population.

Our intent for was for Holy Paladins to pick Selfless Healer if they like to Judge, Eternal Flame if they like heal-over-time spells, and Sacred Shield if they liked damage absorb shields. As it worked out, most every Holy paladin chose Eternal Flame, and we don’t want every Holy paladin to be a heal-over-time machine. (That’s a niche best served by Restoration Druids and Holy Priests.)

We don’t think Holy Paladin’s healing throughput is too high overall (though we’ll gather more information from testing on the 5.4 PTR), so our intent is not to nerf but to reduce reliance on Eternal Flame. One of the biggest problem with Eternal Flame is the way it interacts with the Illuminated Healing mastery, which turns the heal-over-time spell into a potent shield as well. If needed, we will compensate by buffing healing elsewhere.

Our plans for now, are to revert the nerf that was done to the initial healing component of Eternal Flame, but we are unlikely to change the Illuminated Healing back to the way it was.

Sacred Shield

Regarding Sacred Shield, we tried giving the talent as a baseline ability to Protection, but we’re unhappy with that experiment and are likely to revert the change. We agree that the current (old) version of Sacred Shield is more attractive to Holy than the (new) version. We also would likely have to nerf Protection to compensate for getting Holy Shield in addition to another talent. Overall, we think the current (old) version of Sacred Shield is a better design. Perhaps we can still make Sacred Shield more attractive for Holy and Retribution, and make the other two talents (Selfless Healer, Eternal Flame) more attractive to Protection.

Our goal

We understand that Selfless Healer requires a certain playstyle that not every Holy paladin will find attractive. So we want to make Eternal Flame and Sacred Shield feel like viable talent choices as well.

Mastery not benefiting from Execution Sentence or Light’s Hammer isn’t intended and probably just got caught in the change to make Eternal Flame’s heal-over-time not benefit with mastery. We will correct that.

Remember, at this early stage in the PTR, our designers’ focus are on implementation changes (mechanics) first, and tuning changes (numbers) later. Your feedback at this stage will be more helpful to be focusing on the mechanics (e.g. “I liked using hots” or “I like to Judge and wish I could use Selfless Healer more”) and less on “OMG 30% nerf.” (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Warlock (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Patch 5.4 Kil'Jaeden's Cunning Update
There's been a lot of discussion on the topic of Kil'Jaeden's Cunning in 5.4 but we've got some new info, and since that thread is growing rather large I think it's best to start up a new one.

We've been following all of your feedback very closely, and we're going to try a different approach to Kil'Jaeden's Cunning in 5.4.

In a future PTR build, Kil'Jaeden's Cunning will once again be a passive effect. Selecting it will allow the Warlock to cast Malefic Grasp, Shadow Bolt, and Incinerate while moving. There is no penalty, so you'll be able to move at full speed.

We still feel that the 5.3 version of Kil'Jaeden's Cunning isn't working out, but we don't want to "nerf fun" either. It's clear that many Warlocks simply enjoy the feel of being able to cast on the move, and we'd like to be able to preserve as much of that feeling if possible.

With this change, we can make the "penalty" of taking KJC that you don't have Mannoroth's Fury or Archimonde's Vengeance, which should result in more damage output in cases where movement is less critical (and we're working on some changes to Archimonde's Vengeance that should help with that). We're also still planning on buffing Fel Flame in a way that helps lower the impact to mobility caused by choosing one of those talents over Kil'Jaeden's Cunning, without nerfing it for PvP purposes.

Remember, we're still extremely early in the PTR process. There will be many more changes to the game before the patch goes live.

Thanks for the update. So just to be clear, Mannoroth's Fury is still on track to be 10 secs up, 60 sec CD with the increase to range and damage?
Yes. Again, PTR is PTR and anything can change, but we do like how the new Mannoroth's Fury makes it a clear DPS boost in AoE situations. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Patch 5.4 Pet Battle PvP Timer Changes
Originally Posted by Blizzard China (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
We have received feedback where players said that their opponent ran out the whole 30 seconds every turn, which made him wait too long in the battle. Therefore, we are ready to add a new feature in Patch 5.4: In a PvP pet battle, if one side doesn't take action within 15 seconds, the system will reduce the time that player can use in the next turn as a penalty. This change is intended to accelerate the pet battle and make it more compact.

Currently, the system works as follows (numbers below are subject to change):

Each side has 30 seconds for each turn in the initial state, but if one side doesn't do anything in one turn within 15 seconds, then the time that player can use in the next turn will be reduced by (time used in the last turn - 15) / 2 seconds and the total time that player can use in all turns will be reduced by (time used in the last turn - 15) / 10 seconds.

For example:

If one player uses 25 seconds in one turn, then the time that player can use in the next turn will be reduced by (25 - 15) / 2 = 5 seconds, which only affects the next turn. The total time that player can use in all turns will be reduced by (25 - 15) / 10 = 1 second, which affects the whole battle and stacks, but it will reduce the time that can be used in one turn by 15 seconds at most. Therefore, he has 29 - 5 = 24 seconds to decide in the next turn.

Dark Legacy Comics #394
DLC #394 is here, taking a look at how much fun leading a raid is.

by Published on 2013-06-19 10:58 PM

Update (11:30 PM EST): Cleaned up class notes.
Update (8:30 PM EST): Added sound files.
Update (7:30 PM EST): Cleaned up set bonuses, added note about rep requirements and Elite PvP gear.
Update (7:20 PM EST): Added new icons.
Update (7:15 PM EST): Added new models, maps, and client strings.

Patch 5.4 PTR - Build 17093
Build 17093 will be deployed to the PTR realms soon.

This patch appears to have removed all of the rep requirements from the Patch 5.0 and Patch 5.1 Mists of Pandaria armor. Keep in mind that nothing is final, and we won't know for sure until the PTR is online.

The patch also removed stats from Season 14 Elite PvP gear.

New Audio

New Models

New Maps

New Strings
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
  • BEST - Best
  • FLEX_RAID_INFO - Flexible Raid Info
  • FLEX_RAID_LOCKOUT_TEXT - Flexible raids feature a seperate lockout from all other raid lockouts.
  • FLEX_RAID_LOOT_TEXT - Flexible raids use the personal loot system and drop item level 536 loot.
  • FLEX_RAID_SIZE_TEXT - You need to have a raid of 10 to 25 players to start a flexible raid. The difficulty will scale based on the number of players in the raid.
  • SAVED_VARIABLES_TOO_LARGE - Your computer does not have enough memory to load settings from the following AddOn. Please disable some AddOns.\n\n|cffffd200%s|r

New Icons

New Items
You can see all of the new items on the WoWDB PTR site, including the new item level 536 Flexible Tier 16 sets.

Level Type Slot Name
25Priest Glyph Glyph of Feathers
1Companion Pets Essence of Chi-Ji
1Companion Pets Essence of Niuzao
1Companion Pets Essence of Yu'lon
1Key Kor'kron Cage Key
522ClothWaist Grievous Gladiator's Satin Cord
522ClothFeet Grievous Gladiator's Satin Treads
522LeatherWaist Grievous Gladiator's Copperskin Waistband
522LeatherWaist Grievous Gladiator's Dragonhide Belt
522LeatherFeet Grievous Gladiator's Dragonhide Footguards
522LeatherFeet Grievous Gladiator's Copperskin Boots

Achievement Changes
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
Cataclysm Raid
Dungeons & Raids
  • Holding Hands Destroy the final Crystal Conductor during Hagara's lightning phase on Normal or Heroic Difficulty, while all raid members players present are part of the final Lightning Conduit. 10 points.

Dungeons & Raids

Feats of Strength

Pandaria Raid
Dungeons & Raids

Player vs. Player

Proving Grounds

Spell Changes
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
  • Aspect of Chi-Ji (New) Right-Click to summon and dismiss the cute and cuddly version of Chi-Ji. Instant.
  • Aspect of Niuzao (New) Right-Click to summon and dismiss the cute and cuddly version of Niuzao. Instant.
  • Aspect of Xuen (New) Right-Click to summon and dismiss the cute and cuddly version of Xuen. Instant.
  • Aspect of Yu'lon (New) Right-Click to summon and dismiss the cute and cuddly version of Yu'lon. Instant.
  • Rascal-Bot Right Click to summon and dismiss Pierre. If you give him a moment to heat up, he makes an excellent cooking fire. Battle Pet. Instant. Rascal-Bot. Battle Pet. Instant.

Item Set Bonuses

Death Knight (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)

Druid (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Item - Druid T16 Balance 2P Bonus Arcane spells cast while in Lunar Eclipse will shoot a single Starfall Lunar bolt at the target. Nature spells cast while in a Solar Eclipse will shoot a single Sun bolt at the target. Solar bolt at the target.
  • Item - Druid T16 Feral 2P Bonus Omen of Clarity increases damage of Shred, Mangle, and Ravage by 20% for 6 sec. 50% for 6 sec.
  • Item - Druid T16 Guardian 4P Bonus Activating Frenzied Regeneration and Savage Defense will cause a heal over time on yourself for 10% of your maximum health over 8 sec. based on 25% of your Attack Power over 8 sec.
  • Item - Druid T16 Restoration 2P Bonus Ironbark increases your critical chance by 20% for 12 sec. Rejuvenation ticks have a 5% chance to grant a Sage Mender, reducing the mana cost and cast time of your next Healing Touch by 20%, stacking up to 5 times.
  • Item - Druid T16 Restoration 4P Bonus Rejuvenation, Lifebloom, and Wild Growth critical heals have a chance to cause all cast time heals for Casting Ironbark grants you Spark of Life, causing all cast time spells within the next 12 sec to cause grant a Living Seed on the target for 80% of the amount healed.

Hunter (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Item - Hunter T16 2P Bonus Arcane Shot and Multi-shot reduce the cooldown of Rapid Fire by 2 seconds per cast. 12 seconds per cast.
  • Item - Hunter T16 4P Bonus Explosive Shot casts have a 40% chance to increase the number of charges your next Lock and Load effect has not consume a charge of Lock and Load. Instant Aimed shots reduce the cast time of your next Aimed Shot by 50%. Offensive abilities used during Bestial Wrath increase all damage dealt by 2% you deal by 2% and all damage dealt by your pet by, stacking up to 15 times.

Monk (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Item - Monk T16 Windwalker 2P Bonus Combo Breaker: Tiger Palm now generates 1 Chi. Combo Breaker: Blackout Kick now generates 2 Chi. increases the damage of Tiger Palm by 5%. Combo Breaker: Blackout Kick increases the damage of Blackout Kick by 5%.

Paladin (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)

Priest (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Item - Priest T16 4P Bonus Circle of Healing and Prayer of Mending casts increase the effect of your next Holy Word spell by 50% 15%, stacking up to 10 times. While Spirit Shell is active, you gain 10% haste and 3,500 mastery. 15% haste and 3,500 mastery.

Shaman (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Item - Shaman T16 Elemental 2P Bonus Fulmination increases all Fire and Nature damage dealt to that target from the Shaman by 4% 10% for 2 sec per Lightning Shield charge consumed.

Warlock (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Item - Warlock T16 2P Bonus Conflagrate has Conflagrate critical strikes have a 20% chance to increase the critical strike chance of Immolate and Incinerate by 15%. Unstable Affliction critical hits have a 40% chance to increase all damaging effects of Malefic Grasp and Drain Soul by 30% for 10 sec. Soul Fire has a 20% chance to increase you and your pet's damage dealt by 20%.
  • Item - Warlock T16 4P Bonus When a Burning Ember fills up, your critical strike chance is increased by 15% for 5 sec. Haunt has a 20% 8% chance to refund its shard when expiring. Shadow Bolt and Touch of Chaos have a 20% 8% chance to also cast Hand of Gul'dan at the target.

Death Knight (Forums, Talent Calculator)

  • Anti-Magic Zone no longer has spec specific tooltips. Now reduces spell damage done to party or raid members inside it by 40%, down from 75%. Now lasts 3 sec, down from 10 sec / until damage absorbed. (There may be some changes not in the tooltip coming)
  • Death Siphon damage and AP scaling increased by 10%.

  • Dark Command now also increases threat that you generate against the target by 200% for 3 sec
  • Riposte (New) When you dodge or parry any attack, you gain 50% of your Parry and Dodge as additional Critical Strike for 20 sec. Death Knight - Blood Spec.
  • Sanguine Fortitude no longer makes Icebound Fortitude free.

Druid (Forums, Talent Calculator)
  • Growl now also increases threat that you generate against the target by 200% for 3 sec.

  • Dream of Cenarius now causes Healing Touch to cause your next Rip to deal 30% additional damage for Feral, up from 15%. Guardian perk tweaked as well, see tooltip.
  • Soul of the Forest Balance proc now grants 100 Lunar or Solar Power instead of advancing you to the next Eclipse. Guardian proc causes Mangle to generate 30% more Rage, up from 8%.

Hunter (Forums, Talent Calculator)
  • Distracting Shot now increases threat that you generate against the target by 200% for 6 sec.


  • Growl now increases threat that you generate against the target by 200% for 6 sec.

Mage (Forums, Talent Calculator)
  • Frost Bomb is now strongest when it can hit 5 or more targets with the explosion.
  • Living Bomb is now strongest when applied to 1 or 2 targets.
  • Nether Tempest is now strongest when applied to 3 or 4 targets.

  • Frost Bomb is now strongest when it can hit 5 or more targets with the explosion.
  • Living Bomb is now strongest when applied to 1 or 2 targets.
  • Nether Tempest is now strongest when applied to 3 or 4 targets.
  • Temporal Shield now also reduces all damage taken by 15%.

  • Mastery: Frostburn no longer gives bonus damage to all spells against frozen targets. Now Fingers of Frost now increases the damage of Ice Lance by an additional 16%, and Brain Freeze increases the damage of the instant Frostfire Bolt by 16%.

Monk (Forums, Talent Calculator)
  • Healing Elixirs now also heals the next time a damaging attack brings you below 35% of your maximum health.

  • Chi Brew now has spec specific tooltips and grants 3 Brew or Tea for your spec.
  • Healing Elixirs now also heals the next time a damaging attack brings you below 35% of your maximum health.
  • Power Strikes now also allows your next Spinning Crane Kick, Expel Harm, or Keg Smash to generate 1 Chi.
  • Ring of Peace now disarms and silences for 4 sec, up from 3.

Paladin (Forums, Talent Calculator)
  • Reckoning now increases threat that you generate against the target by 200% for 3 sec.

  • Eternal Flame initial healing reduced by 30%.
  • Sacred Shield (New) Holy: When you or your Beacon of Light target falls below 30% health, that target gains Sacred Shield, absorbing 30% of their maximum health. Sacred Shield can only occur once every 2 minutes. Protection, Retribution: When you fall below 30% health, you gain Sacred Shield, absorbing 30% of your maximum health. Sacred Shield can only occur once every 2 minutes. Paladin - LvL 45 Talent. 40 yd range. 6 sec cooldown.
  • Sanctified Wrath now has an extra perk for Holy, increasing the critical strike chance of Holy Shock by 20%. Prot perk is now a reduction of the cooldown of Judgment by 100%, up from 50%.
  • Selfless Healer now also works with Divine Light for Holy Paladins.



Major Glyphs

Priest (Forums, Talent Calculator)

Minor Glyphs

Shaman (Forums, Talent Calculator)
  • Far Sight now has a 1,000 yd range, up from 500.

  • Conductivity now also works with Chain Heal. Now increases Healing Rain duration by 1 sec rather than granting more healing. DPS spells have a chance to proc this on cast now as well, including Stormstrike.
  • Healing Tide Totem healing increased by 50%.
  • Stone Bulwark Totem absorb increased by 33%.

  • Purification now only increases healing by your Healing Stream Totem, not all Water Totems.

Warlock (Forums, Talent Calculator)
  • Fel Flame now costs 3% of base mana, down from 5%. Damage increased by 13%. No longer increases DoT duration.
  • Voidwalker: Suffering now also increases threat that it generates against the target by 200% for 5 sec.

  • Mannoroth's Fury now has a 60 sec cooldown, down from 1.5 min. Now also increases damage by 100% of your Seed of Corruption, Hellfire, Immolation Aura and Rain of Fire for 10 sec.


Warrior (Forums, Talent Calculator)
  • Impending Victory now always heals you for 20% of your maximum health.
  • Taunt now increases threat that you generate against the target by 200% for 3 sec.


  • Riposte (New) When you dodge or parry any attack, you gain 50% of your Parry and Dodge as additional Critical Strike for 20 sec. Warrior - Protection Spec.

Raid & Dungeon Abilities
  • Corrupted Brew (New) Calls forth a great Calamity, striking all players for 0% of their maximum health as Shadow damage. This also removes Shadow Word: Bane from all targets. Unlimited range. Instant.
  • Shared Torment (New) Embodied Misery, Sorrow, and Gloom share health. Unlimited range. Instant.
by Published on 2013-06-19 06:59 AM

D3 - Console or PC Game, Town Portals on the PS3, Targeting With a Controller, Details on Xbox 360 Co-Op

Hearthpwn Updates - Heroes, Hero Powers, Forge Updates

Patch 5.4 - Season 14 Hunter and Monk Armor Sets
Keep in mind that this is just a preview and the final sets may be different!

Arena Pass 2013 - Registration Now Open
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Registration for the 2013 World of Warcraft Arena Pass is now open!

Now is the time to get your teammates together and get registered for the biggest online Arena competition World of Warcraft has to offer.

Participants will be battling up the ladder to test their mettle against the best arena players World of Warcraft has to offer. Players that register for the Arena Pass will also be eligible to earn "Murkimus", the Armored Murloc in-game pet simply by playing! Also, the top 1000 teams will be given an exclusive title for their live characters as well.

If you have any questions or would like more details, please read the FAQ, and remember to check back here for more updates.

Patch 5.4 Warlock Changes Update
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
We're going to try keeping Fel Flame as an instant, slightly buffed, with no DoT refeshing. Intent wasn't to nerf Fel Flame on top of nerfing Kil'Jaeden's Cunning. As long as locks don't become backpedaling Fel Flame spamming machines, we think this change should work.

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
From strictly a design perspective, why does every class need a viable dps spec?
It doesn't. You could design the game without. Overall we reacted to feedback from the community that they want viable DPS specs. (Source)
But you could say e.g. priests are just healers or you could have buffer or support classes with low DPS. Just a different design. (Source)
Interesting, thanks! Followup: could you see WoW as ever having a class with a role other than tank/heal/dps in the future?
Yes, but it would be a big change. Another challenge for the blogs and forums out there to discuss. (Source)

I think GC has hinted previously that he thinks hunter specs should be more different
Yup. Hunter and rogue specs play too similarly in our opinions. (Don't expect massive overhauls.) (Source)

what would make a raid leader chose a rogue over all those classes? not mentioning they are the only melee single role
I don't know that you *need* a rogue or any class. We don't see rogues being sat though. Plenty of every class raiding. (Source)

WW monks need healing to be less of a dps loss?!? How about spriests? (just read icy veins interview)
Our thought was that Shadow has a lot of other utility for a group. Healing is one of Windwalker's main contributions. (Source)
Healing WAS shadow's main contribution. Nerfed to the ground for the sake of PvP.
It's not fair for them to have healing, mana, dispels and things like life grip on top of great damage and survivability. (Source)

I think Homogenization is good for core things like interrupts, but is bad for more iconic abilities.
That's actually what we aim for. We don't always nail it 100%. (Source)

(I will mail you one of my summer reading recommendations if you address that one and clarify the Icy Veins response.)Neina was right. It was energy capping during AR. Low GCD helps burn energy, but not a solution we will use often. (Source)
We are a bit defensive about GCD. Players always want less, because fast, responsive combat is fun. (Source)
And while WoW combat is responsive (hint one of the secrets of our success) we are a server game and can't do Street Fighter. (Source)

How do you balance CC that breaks on DMG when moves such as Howling Blast AE's everything and is apart of main rotation
Don't use HB if you absolutely can't afford to break the CC? (Source)

Reputation / Questing
Questing is designed for dps specs?
That was more true in Vanilla or BC. You can quest with just about any spec these days. (Source)
Even if you can't kill things as fast as DPS, you don't spend 100% of your time in combat and Ts and Hs have other perks. (Source)

I guess the officers in your guild don't mind if someone doesn't gem, enchant and reforge their gear as well?
That is expected because it is much less work and meaningfully impacts performance. Getting a belt slower does not. (Source)

Problem with caps: They make it feel like you need to meet them. If I get 500 VP one week, that's 500 VP gone forever.
Totally. And they aren't there as a target. They are there to discourage dude with too much time from grinding 10k a week. (Source)
Because the next thing we'd hear is: How am *I* supposed to grind 10K a week?! (Source)
do you find lesser->elder charm system worked well? And have you thought making Valor similar? (i.e limit SPENT, not GAIN)
Yes and yes. (Source)

Really enjoying the 5.3 Barrens questing. Weekly VP quest, random escorts, commanders, epic item drops are all fun!
Cool! If feedback is good, we'll certainly do more of it. Not all outdoor adventuring needs to be blue bangs. (Source)

Many players hate dailies - are you absolutely sure, game needs them?
No, but the game does need something to get players out of queuing for instances from Org /SW. (Source)

I'm tired of doing dailies?We are all tired of doing this.we play game to have fun,not tired.
So don't do them? What is the specific reward that you feel requires you to run so many dailies? (Source)
Honestly dailies are the quickest way to get lesser charms, I know there are other ways, but rng on those, dailies are boring
I'm not sure that's true. Last week I got my charms by making a group and farming Barrens bosses. (Source)
GC seems to be missing the point, what is the difference between farming barrens and dailies? Same thing.
If you never want to leave instances, just understand you're going to have a lot less content than other players. (Source)

There was nothing wrong with the rep tabard system. You changed it to dailies and dont like the fallout. GG
I've explained before why we didn't like the tabard rep system, but once again: (Source)
1) It removed the world from WoW by letting instances provide all rewards in the most efficient way. (Source)
2) It made you manage a bunch of tabards in your UI. "Oops. Left the one I wanted in my bank." (Source)
The champion system lets you get some rep from dungeons without item management. We like it better. (Source)

Also making you get rep with GL before SP was silly. If you didnt want ppl to be overwhelmed. Make GL have 5 not 12 a day.
It hasn't been that way in some time though. If you're still worried about GL rep, you might be missing out on a lot of content. (Source)
We're gonna be in 7.0 and people will still be crying about GL/dailies being mandatory
Just remember this tweet in a couple of weeks. (Source)

I don't find dailies fun and don't find coming in lower on the DPS chart than I should because I didn't do them fun either.
How is your DPS lower because you didn't do dailies? (Source)

This Week Only - Epic Summer Sale
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)
Tensions between the Horde and Alliance are heating up just in time for the summer, and now’s the perfect time to get in the fight. This week only, the prices on select World of Warcraft products are getting slashed up to 75%. World of Warcraft®: Battle Chest® and Cataclysm® are just $5, and Mists of Pandaria™ is $19.99, meaning you and your friends can join the battle for Pandaria for half the regular price. Hurry, though—the sale ends June 24, 2013 at 11:59 p.m. PDT.

We Are The World Of Warcraft
Blizzard and WoW fans made an appearance on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon tonight to sing "We Are The World Of Warcraft".

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