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by Published on 2013-10-15 05:00 AM

Giveaway Conclusion, Gamepedia Beta Key Giveaway, Blue Posts

Patch 5.4.1 - Emerald Hippogryph
Emerald Hippogryph is the new Recruit a Friend reward and grants the Friends In Places Even Higher Than That achievement.

Recruit-A-Friend Updates Coming Soon
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
It’s been a while since we’ve updated the Recruit-A-Friend program, but the time has come once again to close the doors for a bit and do a little remodeling. On Tuesday, October 15, we’ll be temporarily shutting down new Recruit-a-Friend sign-ups. Don’t worry though—the program will be back (and better than ever) before you know it.

While we don’t have an official date to share regarding the release of the updated Recruit-A-Friend (RAF) program, those whose accounts are already linked are not affected by this, and any unclaimed rewards will be redeemable once the program starts up again. You’ll also be happy to learn that the current reward will still be available when the Recruit-A-Friend program returns—in fact, players who participate in the upcoming program will have even more reward options available to them. We’ll have more details for you at a future point in time.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Crowd Control List
So I just read the current CC List and noticed that the Demonology Warlock's Carrion Swarm is not on the knockbacks list. I don't know if this was left out intentionally.
Carrion Swarm does not DR, so it wasn't included on the list. There's actually a handful of CC effects like that.

Also, why is the Succubus/Shivarra Mesmerize a fear, and not a mesmerize cc?
This is for balance purposes. That said, we are looking at Seduction/Mesmerize for some potential changes in the future.

If at all possible, could you add a list of all CCs that don't DR?
I'd love to, but pulling that data is a lot trickier. To get technical for a second, the stickied list was pulled from the section of our database that stores info about diminishing returns. Effects that don't DR don't have an entry there, so the name never comes up.

That does mean, however, that if something isn't listed anywhere in that thread, it's either not affected by diminishing returns, or simply doesn't work on players at all. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

CC and Diminishing Returns
As our senior PvP designer Brian Holinka tweeted over the weekend, we've got some pretty solid goals for the future regarding crowd control. We do think it needs to be toned back a bit, both in the amount of CC effects available and in how frequently they can be used.

That said, CC is still an integral part of World of Warcraft PvP. Dealing with it intelligently, both in choosing when to use your own CC as well as reacting to opponent CC's, does have strong gameplay value.

Honestly going to guess they're getting the exact opposite of what they planned from it.
Our only "plans" were to try to make an admittedly confusing system less so. Confusion about which CC effects share DR's doesn't help anyone.

Regardless, you may want to take another look at that list. Not all of that information is correct.
What do you feel is incorrect? The info in that thread is taken directly from our database. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Dampening Effect
As a heads up to those that have raised concerns for the Dampening effect in regards to the affect it will have on Necrotic Strike and double Rogue; we're going to be taking another look at the way in which Necrotic Strike's healing absorb is affected by Dampening. We get that the absorb is the bulk of the ability's "damage", but there is still some concern that it would be too strong. We're also currently discussing the concerns that have been raised for double Rogue.

What about reflective shield? The glyph is supposed to reflect 70% of the damage absorbed. Since dampening should affect healing/absorb only, would it reflect the correct amount of damage?
The damage that's reflected won't change, it will still reflect 70% of the damage that's absorbed. The only difference is that the shield will reflect less overall damage due to the amount that can be absorbed being decreased. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Darker Nights
Darker nights aren’t simply pure aesthetics, they have a huge potential to affect real gameplay, it affects players’ reaction time, mood/emotions, and accessibility… and probably a few other things that we don’t even consciously take notice.
We know how everyone here feels about this, and while in theory “darker nights” sounds like a great idea, it all comes down to design.

Here’s a fresh quote from Mr. Crab himself:
The artists are aware of this feedback and want to try and address it in the future. Too dark is hard to play of course.” (source) (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Next Connected Realms- Updated 10/14
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
As a part of the ongoing realm connection process, we are currently planning to connect Black Dragonflight and Skullcrusher during the maintenance on Tuesday, October 15. We will provide an update should there be any delays or issues in implementing this connection.

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
What is the intended difference between Major Glyphs and Talents? It feels like one toon customization interface with 2 UIs.
It's often the degree. Many of the major glyphs are interesting but would feel too lame claiming a precious talent spot. (Source)

f.ex I love in SWTOR that you MUST weave ST heals in even during AoE bc of CD; "spam AE" literally cannot be a solution.
We agree at a high level. Forcing that without being big jerks is trickier. For example CDs on all AE spells works, but ugh. (Source)

GC why don't you provide more insight into your method of balancing healers?
I don't really like to do this as a rule. The insight is interesting to some. I get that. (Source)
But my experience is some players just use any info for how we balance to lobby for buffs. (Source)
So we try to share philosophy more than specific heuristics or targets. (Source)

We still have input lag! This has not fixed it!
Fixing the input lag is extremely important and is a high priority right now. (Source)

I think players need smart heals because you designed encounters that way. Maybe if there was more single target damage...
Encounters are designed around class capabilities, not the reverse. (Source)

I've been playing since BC, but have yet to see hunters at the top of any sim dps...any chance of that ever happening?
Sims are generally bad at comparing class DPS since different authors of varying skills work on different components. (Source)
They are better when a good author can predict gear choices or rotations for your particular class. (Source)

Hunter (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
So you can show a shield model for warriors during shield wall and spell reflect but you can't show quivers for hunters again?
It's not that simple. Our animation system isn't built that way. (Source)
Small idea for Hunters: while under Deterrence, we wield a random 2h melee weapon (or dual wield a 1-h weapon) from our bags.
Minor glyph idea maybe? (Source)

Paladin (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Just look at WoL for 25 man and then say Paladins are fine.
Are we caught in a time loop here? My original reply was "meters are a terrible way to assess healer potency." (Source)

Priest (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Disc have too many advantages, again, yes. And Chakra.. dont want to get started on that one.
Actually, I'd like to. What would you ultimately want to see in Chakra? (Source)

CoH is even weaker than PoH in hps/hpm? The only benefit is its smart/rarely overhealing. So definitly agree here to.
If PoH is a better heal than CoH than how can you account for Holy using CoH nearly on cooldown? (Source)
Not hard. CoH is a smart heal and has no cast time. Not rocket science?
Then PoH isn't in fact a better use of a click than CoH, which was the conjecture. (Source)

5% nerf to my Mastery. Why? Do HPriests -really- need a nerf? And we still have input lag! This has not fixed it!
It's too early to declare (especially from the outside) that any specific change did or did not do anything. (Source)
But if we decide the Echo change stays, we can consider buffing in other ways since we agree there isn't a balance need for it. (Source)

Do you think Discipline might be easier to get a handle on balance-wise if Spirit Shell was axed and auto-Aegis POH returned?
I think it's the flexibility of Atonement plus the penchant for sniping heals. I think they look better on meters than they are. (Source)

Warrior (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
thougts on raging blow doing more damage then execute atm? 4p is not viable as a fury warrior, and execute is just not used.
You spam Raging Blow? Or you just don't want to use any rage on Execute? (Source)
Looking at some parses, I see Execute as 6-7% of damage for heroic Fury warriors. Seems like they are using it? (Source)

Fan Art Update
The World of Warcraft Fan Art Section has been updated with new fan artwork.

by Published on 2013-10-13 09:21 PM

Pre-Order Bonuses Now For Sale on Xbox LIVE, The Papercraft of TaeHyeon Hong, Curse Weekly Roundup

Hearthstone Beta Key Giveaway - Thrall's Trial & Finkle's Fight

Patch 5.4.1 - Murkalot
Murkalot's Flail is the Blizzcon Reward pet added in Patch 5.4.1, and grants the Murkalot achievement. If you aren't going to Blizzcon, you can still get him by purchasing the Virtual Ticket.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Upcoming "The Crowd Chose You" Hotfix
We're going to take another look at Necrotic Strike's healing absorb and whether or not we feel it should be affected by Dampening. We get that the absorb is the bulk of the ability's "damage", but there is still some concern that it would be too strong. We're also discussing double Rogue. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Cata dungeons and heroics were not difficult... I don't understand this idea that they were.
For matchmade groups, some like Stonecore and Grim Batol were deadly. Very low success rates. That's data, not an opinion. (Source)
It's funny. Early Cata heroics are why me and my whole guild came back. Catas launch raids and heroics were so much fun!
There is a place for hard content for organized groups of friends. The Cata problem was that was the only content. (Source)

World Firsts aren't accurate representations of avg. play experience; better to look at more breadth.
In fact world firsts are specifically fights while severely undergeared, which nobody else will be. (Source)

people who come out saying they are clearing raids too fast/easy. whats your thoughts on dbm helping push through faster?
I'm sure it helps, but so do videos and strategy guides in general. Overall, we're happy with SoO balance at the moment. (Source)

Game used to avoid caling "damage" role silly illetirate "DPS", but it crept in in Norushen DJ and Wrathion's challenge. How?
It's tough. At some point you're using different terminology than most players actually use, so it gets awkward. (Source)
I think about this problem a lot. (Source)

Tank queue abuse is getting bad, can people queued with tanks who leave immediately be kicked automatically?
That should happen today overall. If you don't abuse it often, the system is more forgiving. (Source)

I know people are looking forward to character models, but I just wish night time was actually night
The artists are aware of this feedback and want to try and address it in the future. Too dark is hard to play of course. (Source)

Timeless Isle
It's funny you say this. I am not participating in Shaohao rep grinding because the return for the effort invested is horrible
It is intended to be optional. (Source)

Crowd Control & Diminishing Returns
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
We've seen some confusion recently about exactly which crowd control effects share diminishing returns. To hopefully clear that up, we're providing the following, categorized lists of all of the CC effects in the game.

For those who may be unaware of how the Diminishing Returns system works, here's a brief explanation: After you've been affected by a crowd control effect in PvP, there's a 15 second window for diminishing returns. The second effect of the same category (as listed below) that is used on you will only last for 50% of its normal duration, and the 15 second window will be restarted. Should you be affected by a third effect from the same category inside that window, it will only last for 25% of its initial duration. The 15 second window will once again be restarted, and you will be immune to any further effects of that category for the duration.

The lists below have been separated out into their specific diminishing returns categories. Each ability shares diminishing returns with the other abilities it has been listed with, and no others.

Hearthstone Beta Key Giveaways
Our friends over at Hearthpwn finally have more beta keys to give away! Both contests end in a little over 24 hours, so be sure to enter soon if you want a chance to win.

To enter the Twitter contest, follow Hearthpwn and retweet the beta key giveaway tweet. To enter the Facebook contest, like the Hearthpwn Facebook page and reply to this post giving Finkle Einhorn an idea of how he can escape The Beast.

You have 24 hours to respond on Facebook or Twitter if you are selected for a key, so be sure to check your messages!

by Published on 2013-10-12 02:18 AM

Patch 5.4.1 PTR - Build 17841
Build 17481 will be deployed to the PTR realms soon.

New Models

New Icons

New Strings
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
  • BLIZZARD_STORE_ERROR_PARENTAL_CONTROLS - Feature has been disabled by Parental Controls.
  • CHOOSE_ONE_REWARD - Choose 1 Reward
  • CLAIM_REWARD - Claim Reward
  • ERR_RECRUIT_A_FRIEND_ACCOUNT_LIMIT - You have submitted the maximum number of recruits for this time period. Please try again later.
  • ERR_RECRUIT_A_FRIEND_FAILED - Failed to send Recruit A Friend request. Please try again later.
  • PREVIEW - Preview
  • PRODUCT_CHOICE_NO_TAKE_BACKSIES - Are you sure? You can't change your selection after this step.
  • PRODUCT_CLAIMING_FAILED - Error claiming product. Please try again.
  • QUEUED_STATUS_LOCKED - |cffff2020Locked|r
  • QUEUED_STATUS_LOCKED_EXPLANATION - You are locked to this rated battleground until it finishes.
  • RAF_BENEFIT1 - Level Faster
  • RAF_BENEFIT2 - Grantable Levels
  • RAF_BENEFIT3 - Summon your friend
  • RAF_BENEFIT4 - 30 days of free game time
  • RAF_BENEFIT5 - In-Game Mount
  • RAF_BENEFITS - Benefits
  • RAF_BUTTON_DISABLED_FACTION - You cannot use Recruit A Friend while playing a neutral character.
  • RAF_BUTTON_REWARD_TOOLTIP_DESCRIPTION - You have earned a reward from Recruit A Friend! Click here to claim it!
  • RAF_BUTTON_TOOLTIP_DESCRIPTION - You can recruit a friend and earn fantastic rewards!
  • RAF_DESCRIPTION - Earn game time, in-game rewards,\nand more by recruiting your friends
  • RAF_ENTER_EMAIL - Enter your friend's email address
  • RAF_ENTER_NOTE - Write a note to your friend
  • RAF_ENTER_NOTE_PROMPT - Enter a note...
  • RAF_FAQ - Recruit a Friend FAQ
  • RAF_INVITATION_SENT - Your invitation has been sent!\n\nYour friend will receive an email with instructions on creating a new account and downloading the game. You will be notified in-game when they have created a new character and you can begin your adventure together.
  • RAF_INVITEE_FRIEND_ADDED_EXPLANATION - You are now friends with the person who invited you to play World of Warcraft.\n\n|cffffd200Right-click|r their name to whisper them when they are online.\n\nYou can now join up and enjoy Azeroth together!
  • RAF_INVITEE_FRIEND_ADDED_NOTICE - Open your friends list to find your friend that invited you to play World of Warcraft
  • RAF_INVITER_FRIEND_ADDED - Your recruited friend is now your Battletag Friend: |cff88C5ff[%s]|r
  • RAF_MORE_DETAILS - [Click here for more details on how it works.]
  • RAF_PRODUCT_CHOICE_CLAIM - Click to choose your reward
  • RAF_PRODUCT_CHOICE_EARNED - You have earned a Recruit A Friend Reward
  • RAF_REALM_INFO - Your friend will be directed to join:\n|cffffd200%1$s|r on |W|cffffd200%2$s|r|w
  • RAF_SEND_INVITATION - Send Invitation
  • RECRUIT_A_FRIEND - Recruit A Friend
  • RECRUIT_A_FRIEND_FACTION_SUGGESTION_ALLIANCE - Your friend plays for the Alliance faction. Pick one of these races if you want to play together.\n\nHuman, Dwarf, Night Elf, Gnome, Draenei, Worgen, or Pandaren
  • RECRUIT_A_FRIEND_FACTION_SUGGESTION_HORDE - Your friend plays for the Horde faction. Pick one of these races if you want to play together.\n\nOrc, Undead, Tauren, Troll, Blood Elf, Goblin, or Pandaren.
  • RECRUIT_A_FRIEND_REWARDS - Recruit A Friend Rewards

Misc Additions
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
Automated In-game Mail
  • Automated In-game Mail #399 - Emerald Hippogryph: Some feel that the Emerald Hippogryph is the most majestic of these noble creatures.

    Even if one does not agree, they are certainly a striking sight nonetheless!

    --Mei Francis - Exotic Mounts

  • HolidayName #231 - WoW's 10th Anniversary

Achievement Changes
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
Player vs. Player

Feats of Strength

Player vs. Player
  • Fire-Watcher has been updated to reflect the hotfix down to 2,000 coins, down from 10,000.

Proving Grounds

Spell Changes
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
  • Emerald Hippogryph (New) Summons and dismisses a rideable Emerald Hippogryph. The capabilities of this mount depend on your Riding skill and location. Account wide. 1.5 sec cast.

  • Bernard (New) Right Click to summon and dismiss Bernard. Battle Pet. Instant.
  • Murkalot (New) Right Click to summon and dismiss Murkalot. Battle Pet. Instant.

Druid (Forums, Talent Calculator)

  • Swiftmend now heals every 2 sec for 8 sec, rather than every 1 sec for 7 sec. (Likely reflecting a hotfix.)

Major Glyphs

Paladin (Forums, Talent Calculator)

Priest (Forums, Talent Calculator)
  • Cascade can now bounce up to 4 times, up from 3.

  • Cascade can now bounce up to 4 times, up from 3.


Rogue (Forums, Talent Calculator)


Warlock (Forums, Talent Calculator)
  • Agony had a tooltip update to reflect hotfixes.

  • Agony had a tooltip update to reflect hotfixes.

Warrior (Forums, Talent Calculator)

Raid & Dungeon Abilities
  • Bonecracker Crack the target's bones, reducing maximum health by 10% and causing the target to bleed for 40,000 Physical damage every 1 sec. Limited to 2 targets. 100 yd range. 1.5 sec cast. 3 sec cooldown.
  • Bursting Pride A mass of Sha energy forms at an enemy's location that explodes after 3 seconds. The explosion inflicts 300,000 Shadow damage to all players within 5 4 yards. 500 yd range. Instant.
  • Claw of Burning Anger Imbues all players of the damage dealer role in the current quadrant of this warehouse with a boon. Attacks have a chance to damage a target for 99,000 118,000 Fire damage. This effect has a 5-second cooldown. Unlimited range. Instant.
  • Desecrated Inflicts 200,000 Inflicts 150,000 Shadow damage every 1 sec. Unlimited range. Instant.
  • Electrostatic Charge Inflicts 250,000 Nature damage to the current target. Increases damage taken from Electrostatic Charge by 100% and damage inflicted on targets with Reactive Armor by 200% for 60 sec. This ability stacks up to 10 times. 300 yd range. 2 sec cast. 1 sec cast.
  • Empowered Desecrate Inflicts 200,000 Inflicts 150,000 Shadow damage to enemies within 15 yards and creates a Empowered Desecrated Weapon at the location. Unlimited range. Instant.
  • Envenomed Shadowstep Attempts to step through the shadows and reappears behind an enemy, inflicting 250,000 0 Nature damage immediately and applying a poison to the target for 30 sec. 45 yd range. Instant. 4 sec cooldown.
  • Explosive Ring Inflicts 150,000 Inflicts 200,000 Fire damage to all victims caught in the blast every second. Unlimited range. Instant.
  • Healing Spray Applies a magic spray to the target, healing it for 750,000 125,000 every 1 sec. for 10 sec. 40 yd range. 10 sec cast (Channeled).30 sec cooldown.
  • Injection Inflicts 0 Nature damage every second for 20 12 sec. When this effect fades it causes a reaction. The injection reacts upon leaving the victim's bloodstream, spawning several Amber Parasites. 100 yd range. 3 sec cast.
  • Iron Star Impact Inflicts 0 Physical damage, knocking them back. Unlimited range. 3 sec cast.5 sec cooldown.
  • Mutate Transforms the victim into a mantid scorpion. The process is painful and inflicts 0 Fire damage to all enemies within 10 3 yards and 0 Fire damage every second thereafter to the primary target. 200 yd range. 3 sec cast.
  • Serrated Rampage Deals 50% weapon damage to all targets in a 9 yard 90-degree cone in front of the caster, every 0.25 sec for until cancelled. 6 sec cast (Channeled). Requires One-Handed Axes, Two-Handed Axes, One-Handed Maces, Two-Handed Maces, Polearms, One-Handed Swords, Two-Handed Swords, Staves, One-Handed Exotics, Two-Handed Exotics, Fist Weapons, Daggers. 1 sec cast.
  • Sundering Blow Inflicts 0 Physical damage and sunders the target's armor, reducing armor by 10% for 30 sec. Generates 5 rage per stack of Sundering Blow on the target. Next melee. Melee range. 3 sec cast.2 sec cooldown.
  • War Song A powerful war cry inflicts 50% of enemies' maximum health as damage. 70 Mana. 3 sec cast. 3 sec cooldown.
by Published on 2013-10-11 05:07 AM

New Datamined Patch - Class Changes, Passive Effects, Item Graphics and MUCH more

Hearthstone Innkeeper's Invitational

Upcoming "The Crowd Chose You" Hotfix Feedback
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Will this also lower absorbs?
It affects absorbs as well, yes.

This change HEAVILY favors double DPS.
We disagree. Matches with double DPS comps rarely (if ever) last long enough for either The Crowd Chose You or the new Dampening mechanic to even become a factor. It'll take a full 10 minutes before Dampening even begins to stack.

Necrotic Strike + Dampening = GG...
Necrotic Strike's healing absorption effect will be reduced at the same rate.

How does this address the double Blood DK issue again?
This change isn't targeted specifically at Blood. As I mentioned before, one of our goals with the changes in 5.4 was to avoid heavily influencing player behavior. The Crowd Chose You has a strong affect on Arena gameplay in all brackets, across a wide spectrum of compositions, not just Blood DK in 2v2. We're going to fix Blood (and we're discussing how exactly to do that), but we don't want to balance the entire Arena system around it.

That's why it favors Double DPS.
I'm not sure I follow. Looking specifically at the 2v2 bracket, matches where either team is running double DPS typically end before the 5 minute mark. They sometimes go longer, but almost never to 10 minutes. The games that do involve Blood DK's, which as I mentioned a few moments ago, we're looking to make additional changes to.

So, under normal circumstances, the only matches that will realistically be affected by this are Healer/DPS vs Healer/DPS, in which case both healers are being affected equally. Matches between double DPS and Healer/DPS or another double DPS team are completely unaffected.

How is that fair to Unholy DKS? Necro strikes are their main source of killing in arnea. So you're going to nerf their main source of DMG cause of a healing debuff?
Only the absorption affect will be reduced, not the damage output.

How doesn't this favor classes that already have a MS like warriors?
Mortal Strike (and similar effects) are applied multiplicatively. That means they don't become any more (or less) effective as Dampening begins to stack.

Here's a quick, if mathy, example: Say you cast a heal that, unmodified, would heal for 100k. If Mortal Strike is active, that heal is reduced by 25%, for a final amount of 75k (and a loss of 25k healing).

Now, say Dampening is at 10%. Your 100k heal would then land for 90k. Mortal Strike would only affect the remaining 90k healing, putting the final amount healed at 67.5k. The heal was still 25% less effective than it would have been if Mortal Strike wasn't active, but was only reduced by 22.5K -- which, you may notice, is 10% less than the previous example, keeping it in line with the effects of Dampening.

TL;DR: Mortal Strike (and similar effects) are not made any more or less desirable by Dampening.

How will this effect Warriors and Warlocks? and other dps classes which have some sort of shield or similar damange migration ability, and how about damage reducing ability's like Hand of Sacrifice?
Self-healing, shielding as well as other abilities and spells like Necrotic Strikes absorption effectiveness will also be weakened by Dampening, it will not just affect healing.

At first, as a pure healer, this seems very bad. And very bias towards dps and hybrids.
We don't think that this change will diminish the value of healers or make them less desirable than they already are. Matches that lack healers, or even matches where only one team has a healer rarely last long enough for Dampening to kick in.

The tactic would to be, to have a triple dps combo with powerful enough offhealing, cc's/esacpe abliltys to avoid the majority of the fight for 10 mins, and the just pop all damage cd's and kill off a dps, while the healer is just watching.
That's a legitimate concern, however Dampening will hit the triple DPS team just as hard, if not harder than the opposing team, because their off-healing is already fairly weak and will just get weaker making a double DPS/healer team able to take them out as well. The main point to be made here is that this will affect both teams at an equal rate, so no individual team should be able to gain a greater advantage from it than the other.

Do remember that this feature is still under development and changes may occur to it, so please let us know what you think.

Does that mean that priests who relay on shileds will be incarnation of god itself in arena?
As was mentioned earlier in the thread, shields will also have their effectiveness reduced by Dampening. So things such as "Power Word: Shield" should not give any particular classes an advantage.

Lame, once again we're back to where we started where disc priests can decide to be a douche and take the game to a draw even when their teammate is dead.. great
Why do you feel that Disc priests are going to be so strong? If it's because you think absorbs will not be included, please see my comment above.

Will it affect the health return component of mage food (and bandages)?
That's actually a really good question that I will endeavor to find an answer for.

Well, the new design is certainly better than what we have now at least. Thoguh personally I think it should start affecting damage instead rather than healing.
So you feel it would be better for damage to increase by X% per Y seconds instead of reducing healing? Can you give a little more information as to why you think this would work better than the current Dampening effect?

I'm still extremely worried about Blood DK's. They can easily survive for the first 15 minutes or so and then, with a 25% healing debuff, spam NS with all their cooldowns up and try to finish the healer. This strategy may turn out to be so efficient that Blood DK's are still going to be a huge problem here.
This change isn't intended to address Blood DK's in 2's and we also don't want to be designing the way the Arena system works around an individual spec. We agree that double Blood DK's in Arena are too strong at the moment and we're looking into some other changes in that regard.

Also, while you're here, I'd like to ask why it was decided that Necrotic Strike should be affected by the healing debuff? It means a DK will effectively lose his prime damage component over time.
Because the absorption effect of Necrotic strike effectively becomes more and more powerful as healing gets reduced. This would mean that teams which have this mechanic at their disposal would be at a great advantage once Dampening starts to kick in. The damage component of Necrotic Strike remains the same, however.

How would Polymorph work in conjunction with Dampening?
Another great question that I will look into.

What about teams that will save their major damage cooldowns for after the 10 minute mark?
At that point of the match, you're in just as much danger as the other team. Not only that, it's a gradual increase and not a sudden one; this means that the 10 minute mark is still the same as the 5 minute mark.

How will this effect Anti-Magic Shell? Does it go away once 1 damage is taken?
Absorption effects are affected in the same manner as healing in regards to Dampening. So it should absorb 1% less every 10 seconds after the 10 minute mark.

How would this change effect a DoT cleave, especially in combination with a Gateway. I can see teams kiting for a long amount with almost no risks/downsides.
Can you elaborate further on how you see this style of comp changing its play style to adapt to the new system?

If anyone else sees an issue with this system where particular classes or compositions will change their gameplay to take advantage of this system, please let us know.

And if necrotic is affected, how about mortal strike effects?
Mortal Strike effects are percentage based, while Necrotic Strike is based off of the Death Knights Attack Power. While Mortal Strike effects scale along with the heals because they are based on percentage, the healing shield effect from Necrotic Strike would get exponentially stronger the more Dampening kicks in. This is the reason that Necrotic Strikes healing shield is getting reduced at the same rate as healing, but Mortal Strike effects are not.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Stormwind (City) Denizens – a Query
Hello denizens of Stormwind – jewel of Human civilization. I have a query for you. When you look over the city and think of it ever so fondly, what feature do you think of most? What is your favorite aspect of the city and do you have any favorite NPCs there? (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Region-Wide Arena Queue Times
We're aware players are reporting that they're experiencing longer queues than normal for Arena. We're currently looking into this and when we have more information on the matter, we'll get back to you. For the time being, please discuss this matter in the active thread here: (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Arena Participation
Warrior participation has definitely increased, but the ratings seem to be looking normal right now. We'll be keeping an eye on things though, sometimes it’s hard to tell if there’s really a need for a quick hotfix from the very beginning of a new season and/or patch.

Players are also starting to get new weapons right now, and that can result in players experiencing sudden changes, especially on the apparent damage output of classes that scale particularly well with weapons.

I know that everyone expects devs to always react immediately to everything but sometimes things should be allowed to go on for a while in order to be able to increase the level of confidence before making any changes, if we don’t, we risk having to keep reverting changes all the time or keep making adjustments if the changes are too conservative. In my opinion that’s worse than waiting a bit before a well thought out hotfix is applied, too many changes tend to detach players from the game. It’s true that sometimes this has backfired, but more often than not, time reveals that the changes aren’t actually necessary or that they didn’t need to be as strong as initially thought out. Sometimes there’s just an initial entropy that stabilizes over-time (because WoW is not an isolated system). (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Hearthstone Innkeeper's Invitational
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

BlizzCon draws ever-closer, and we have an exciting Hearthstone announcement to share with you all today!

Some dedicated members of the Hearthstone community have been bestowed the honor of showing you just a taste of what competitive card-slinging is all about in our featured one-time Hearthstone BlizzCon exhibition tournament: The Innkeeper’s Invitational!

The idea behind the Invitational is simple: Take some of Hearthstone’s most passionate players and pit them against each other in a no-holds-barred deathmatch . . . er, pit them against each other live on stage at BlizzCon with three of their best constructed decks at their side. Each player must bring three decks with three different classes and they will battle each other in a set of best-of-five matches. If one of their chosen decks loses, it's out for good! The losing player will then have to choose one of their remaining decks to battle with, and if they run out of decks, that's the end of their run: Time to pay your tab and don't forget to tip the innkeeper.

As our invitees duel down to the last card and bounce each other out the doors of the tavern (more formally called “being eliminated”) in this tournament, only one player will remain standing and be named "Grandmaster of the Hearth", receiving a fitting trophy for their impressive efforts.

Who have we chosen to step into the tavern? Open the doors yourself and take look!

Top Bracket
  • Day[9] Vs. Reckful
  • Hafu Vs. Kripparrian

Bottom Bracket
  • Trump Vs. Husky
  • Noxious Vs. Artosis

This is a great opportunity to see some of your favorite Hearthstone players in action and to watch a few fun, casual, and friendly games of Hearthstone, live at BlizzCon! Not heading to BlizzCon this year? Don't miss any of the action from the comfort of your own home by watching the semi-finals and finals via or our World of Warcraft Twitch channel.

Don't want miss a second of all the exciting BlizzCon action? Watch the full event, which includes exciting Blizzard developer panels and other featurettes, by purchasing a Virtual Ticket today. Sign up now and you’ll also receive a Mystery Minion to add to your Hearthstone collection!

Fan Art
More art for the WoW Tribute book!

by Published on 2013-10-10 06:43 AM

BlizzCon Merchandise Sale Coming on Friday, Blue Posts, What Side Quest Do You Find the Most Interesting?

Blue Posts - BlizzCon Merch Sale, Opt-In Waves, EU Beta Issues

Update - Added the US announcement for the Crowd Chose You!!! Hotfix

Upcoming The Crowd Chose You!!! Hotfix
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
With Patch 5.4, we added a mechanic called "The Crowd Chose You" to Arena gameplay. This mechanic was added to suit two primary goals: keep the game from dragging on too long, and make sure matches always end with one team declared the winner. However, we wanted something that wouldn’t make players feel they needed to change how they played the game. Unfortunately, the implementation of The Crowd Chose You that went live with Patch 5.4 is not filling that last requirement.

So, we’re going to take a different approach. In an upcoming hotfix, we’ll be removing The Crowd Chose You entirely, and replacing it with a new mechanic called Dampening. If a match should last for 10 minutes, all players in the Arena will begin to receive a stacking debuff that reduces healing done by 1% every 10 seconds. This will continue until one team is eventually able to claim the victory. In the extremely unlikely event that neither team has won after 20 minutes, the match will end in a draw.

We feel that this mechanic will have a much smaller impact on playstyle, team composition, and decision making than The Crowd Chose You, and thus result in more fun and exciting matches. We’re currently testing the hotfix internally, and will provide an update when it goes live.

Patch 5.4 Hotfixes: October 9
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
  • Druid (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
    • Restoration
      • To help address issues with input lag, Efflorescence now heals for twice as much every 2 seconds (was once every 1 second). Additional adjustments have been made so the total amount healed by Efflorescence from Swiftmend, Force of Nature Treants, and Wild Mushroom remains unchanged.
  • Warrior (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
    • Talents
      • Corrected an issue that allowed Warriors to cast Storm Bolt while under the effects of a Hex.

  • [Requires a realm restart] Engaging Ordos in combat will no longer cause the Ordon Sanctuary gate to close.
  • Added an upper limit to the number of wolves that could be summoned by Moonfang's Call the Pack ability.
  • Flik and Flik's Frog should no longer incorrectly wind up under the terrain on Darkmoon Island.

Raids, Dungeons, and Scenarios
  • Siege of Orgrimmar
    • Norushen
      • Resolved an issue that could cause the Overconfidence debuff to persist after defeating Zeal.
    • Kor'kron Dark Shaman
      • Reduced the amount of hostile NPCs in the areas leading up to the Dark Shaman encounter on Raid Finder difficulty.
    • General Nazgrim
      • Reduced the amount of hostile NPCs in the areas leading up to General Nazgrim on Raid Finder difficulty.
    • Spoils of Pandaria
      • Blade of the Hundred Steps should now only be applied to one tank per quadrant in Normal and Heroic difficulties.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Faction Restricted Classes
it made raid tuning very hard for blizzard as they pretty much ended up having to have 2 versions to take into account the class differences
Raid tuning was an issue for sure, but PvP balance was also a concern when the decision came to make Shamans and Paladins available to both factions... I believe this decision was made around the same time the first Arenas were being added to the game.

Before then, Shamans and Paladins were often "unknowns" for the opposite factions, meaning that the abilities, strengths, and weaknesses of these classes weren't well known by players of the opposite faction, and that made them harder to fight for many. These "unknowns" also lead to many misconceptions and a lot of confusion, which often manifested in nerf spam campaigns on the forums.

I still shudder from time to time from the memories of having to moderate the forums during the massive "Vin Diesel plays a Shaman" nerf campaign back in 2005/2006. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Season 14 Two Handed Maces
There is no two-handed mace available in season 14, the same as there isn't a Crossbow available in season 14 for Conquest points. It's actually very normal for there not to be every single weapon type available during each season. The same thing has happened in previous seasons but for other weapon types and in season 15, there may be two-handed maces available again.

If your preference is to use a mace as your weapon we can understand your frustration, especially if you happen to play a Dwarf, however if you plan on wielding a two-handed weapon this season then you'll need to decide between a sword and an axe. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Flex Raiding
Greg, any thoughts on making Flex loot tradeable in guild groups? Got a few items I wish had gone elsewhere. Thanks!
Long term it's probably a requirement, but we currently don't have a way to drop more loot for larger groups. (Source)

Can you give us any idea of Flex participation relative to normal? I'm excited to see if it's as highly popular as it seems.
It's as or more popular than normal and growing. It makes sense that flex could grow to be far more popular than normal. (Source)

UI / Addons
Is there any possibility that blizz let us set factions like The Tillers or Horde Expedition to inactive?
It's a known issue with factions that have sub-factions. We'd like to fix it. (Source)

Reputation / Questing
didnt you wrote you want to remove the prerequisite "wind serpent riding" for alts? Its still in the game, unfortunately
I believe I said we could consider it. With all of the catch up mechanisms, it's pretty fast for alts to get there. (Source)

Class Balance Discussion
This may sound backwards, but try using "I" more often and "we" less often in your feedback. (Source)
I use "we" a lot, but I know the values and intentions of my fellow developers in a way you cannot know for all players. (Source)

This will help communicate from the players to the devs. Unlike the forums, it's easier to read.
Surveys don't provide context. I care more about when you feel less mobile more than whether you rank mobility a 2. (Source)

And to be clear, I do think that blues should always be very careful when they decide to post in a class forum.
I don't personally post in class forums anymore (or rarely anywhere). It caused more QQ than it solved IMO. (Source)
If blues won't post in class specific forums why even have them?
They are intended for players to be able to discuss class issues with fellow players that other class might not find interesting. (Source)

BlizzCon® Merchandise Sale Coming Oct. 11—Get a Sneak Peek Now!
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
We know everyone’s anxious to see what will be available to purchase for BlizzCon this year. While we can’t show you everything just yet, we wanted to share a sneak peek at what’s in store (pun intended).

This year’s BlizzCon online sale will begin October 11 at 10 a.m. PT and will be exclusive to BlizzCon attendees* and Virtual Ticket buyers until the end of the show on November 9. Supplies will be limited, so if you’re not going to the show in person or haven’t yet purchased a Virtual Ticket, you might want to order now to get your chance at some cool BlizzCon merchandise.

To access the sale on these dates, log in to the Blizzard Store with the® account associated with your BlizzCon ticket or Virtual Ticket (physical ticket buyers can view this info in their Order History).

In the meantime, check out just a few of this year’s items below

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