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by Published on 2013-08-02 12:46 AM

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Activision Blizzard Q2 Earnings Call
Blizzard had their normal earnings call today, after the announcement last week that WoW was down to 7.7 million subscribers.

  • Titan will not be a subscription based MMO. Blizzard is still working on a new direction and plan for the project.
  • The decline in subscribers in Q2 was more evenly split between Asia and the West.
  • Blizzard will continue to work on making the process of rejoining the game smoother.
  • The subscriber churn rate was very positively impacted by Patch 5.2 and 5.3.
  • Blizzard All-Stars is in wider internal testing and will be talked about more later this year.
  • Diablo 3 has sold over 12 million copies.

Patch 5.4 PTR - Build 17260
Build 17260 will be deployed to the PTR realms soon.

New Bind on Account Epic Weapons
The item level on these items is not final!

Level Type Spec Slot Name
561Off HandSpell DPSOff Hand Hellscream's Tome of Destruction
548Off HandSpell DPSOff Hand Hellscream's Tome of Destruction
574Off HandSpell DPSOff Hand Hellscream's Tome of Destruction
574ShieldTankOff Hand Hellscream's Shield Wall
548ShieldTankOff Hand Hellscream's Shield Wall
561ShieldTankOff Hand Hellscream's Shield Wall
561ShieldSpell SpiritOff Hand Hellscream's Barrier
548ShieldSpell SpiritOff Hand Hellscream's Barrier
574ShieldSpell SpiritOff Hand Hellscream's Barrier
574One-handed AxePhysical DPSOne Hand Hellscream's Cleaver
548One-handed AxePhysical DPSOne Hand Hellscream's Cleaver
561One-handed AxePhysical DPSOne Hand Hellscream's Cleaver
561Two-handed AxeMeleeTwo Hand Hellscream's Decapitator
548Two-handed AxeMeleeTwo Hand Hellscream's Decapitator
574Two-handed AxeMeleeTwo Hand Hellscream's Decapitator
574BowPhysical DPSRanged Hellscream's Warbow
561BowPhysical DPSRanged Hellscream's Warbow
548BowPhysical DPSRanged Hellscream's Warbow
548One-handed MaceSpell SpiritOne Hand Hellscream's Warmace
561One-handed MaceSpell SpiritOne Hand Hellscream's Warmace
574One-handed MaceSpell SpiritOne Hand Hellscream's Warmace
574PolearmPhysical DPSTwo Hand Hellscream's Pig Sticker
561PolearmPhysical DPSTwo Hand Hellscream's Pig Sticker
548PolearmPhysical DPSTwo Hand Hellscream's Pig Sticker
561One-handed SwordMeleeOne Hand Hellscream's Doomblade
548One-handed SwordMeleeOne Hand Hellscream's Doomblade
574One-handed SwordMeleeOne Hand Hellscream's Doomblade
574StaffSpell DPSTwo Hand Hellscream's War Staff
548StaffSpell DPSTwo Hand Hellscream's War Staff
561StaffSpell DPSTwo Hand Hellscream's War Staff
561DaggerPhysical DPSOne Hand Hellscream's Razor
548DaggerPhysical DPSOne Hand Hellscream's Razor
574DaggerPhysical DPSOne Hand Hellscream's Razor

New Icons

New Models

New Strings
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
  • BATTLE_PET_COMBAT_LOG_ABILITY_GAINED - %s %s has gained the ability %s.
  • BLIZZARD_STORE_ERROR_MESSAGE_BATTLEPAY_DISABLED - An error was encountered. Please come back later.
  • BLIZZARD_STORE_ERROR_MESSAGE_PAYMENT - You don't have a valid payment method. Please visit Account Management.
  • BLIZZARD_STORE_NOT_AVAILABLE_SUBTEXT - The Store is temporarily unavailable. Please try again later.
  • CONVERSATION_INCOMPATIBLE_CLIENT - This friend is not using a client capable of conversations.
  • DUNGEON_FLOOR_TIMELESSISLE22 - Cavern of Lost Spirits
  • SPELL_FAILED_CUSTOM_ERROR_202 - You may not change specialization while a trial is in progress.
  • TRANSFER_ABORT_SOLO_PLAYER_SWITCH_DIFFICULTY - This instance is already in progress. You may only switch difficulties from inside the instance.

New Items
Siege of Orgrimmar loot has been added, making for 100s of new items in this build.

Level Type Slot Name
1Junk Twisted Treasures of the Vale
1Junk Coalesced Turmoil
90Other Kor'kron Shaman's Treasure
1Quest Epoch Stone
85Enchanting Sha Crystal Fragment

Achievement Changes
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
Feats of Strength



Player vs. Player
  • Archiereus (New) Obtain 10000 Bloody Coins as an Emissary of Ordos or Ordon Fire-Watcher. 10 points.
  • Candlekeeper (New) Obtain 10 Bloody Coins as an Emissary of Ordos or Ordon Fire-Watcher. 10 points.
  • Emissary of Ordos (New) Use the Censer of Eternal Agony obtained from Speaker Gulan on the Timeless Isle. 10 points.
  • Fire-Watcher (New) Obtain 100 Bloody Coins as an Emissary of Ordos or Ordon Fire-Watcher. 10 points.
  • Kilnmaster (New) Obtain 1000 Bloody Coins as an Emissary of Ordos or Ordon Fire-Watcher. 10 points.
  • Oathguard (New) Obtain 500 Bloody Coins as an Emissary of Ordos or Ordon Fire-Watcher. 10 points.

Spell Changes
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
  • Kor'kron Juggernaut Summons and dismisses the Kor'kron Annihilator Juggernaut. Account wide. 1.5 sec cast.
  • Kor'kron War Wolf Summons and dismisses a rideable Vicious War Wolf. 1.5 sec cast. Kor'kron War Wolf. Account wide. 1.5 sec cast.
  • Spawn of Galakras Summons and dismisses a rideable Rusted Proto-Drake Spawn of Galakras. This is a flying mount. Account wide. 1.5 sec cast.

Item Set Bonuses
  • Item - Death Knight T16 Blood 4P Bonus Dancing Rune Weapon will convert reactivate all Frost and Unholy runes to Death Runes, and make your next Death Strike free. and convert them to Death runes.
  • Item - Druid T16 Restoration 4P Bonus Casting Ironbark grants you Spark of Life, causing all cast time spells within the next 15 sec to grant a Living Seed on the target for 80% of the amount healed. Targets of your Wild Growth spell are instantly healed for [ 25% of Spell Power ].
  • Item - Monk T16 Mistweaver 4P Bonus When your Renewing Mist heals a target, you have a 4% chance to cast a Chi Wave healing bolt that will not bounce Mist Wave healing bolt at a nearby low health friendly target.
  • Item - Paladin T16 Protection 2P Bonus While Guardian of Ancient Kings is active, 200% While Divine Protection is active, 75% of the damage taken is converted into a heal over time that activates when Guardian of Ancient Kings fades. Divine Protection fades.
  • Item - Warrior T16 Protection 4P Bonus For 10 sec after Shield Wall fades Demoralizing Shout falls off your targets, you gain Rage from taking damage.

Death Knight (Forums, Talent Calculator)
  • Unholy Presence now increases haste rather than attack speed and rune regeneration.



Major Glyphs

Hunter (Forums, Talent Calculator)
Major Glyphs

Ferocity & Cunning
  • Dash no longer lists a Focus cost.

  • Charge no longer lists a Focus cost.

Mage (Forums, Talent Calculator)
  • Rune of Power now has a 5 yd buff range, up from standing on it.

Monk (Forums, Talent Calculator)
  • Invoke Xuen, the White Tiger damage now ticks every second, up from every 6 sec. Now lasts until cancelled / 45 sec. No longer lists a base damage.

  • Brewing: Tigereye Brew can now stack 20 times, down from 30. Now allows you to consume 10 stacks at a time, down from 15. Now grants 60% increased damage, down from 90%.
  • Tigereye Brew can now stack 20 times, down from 30. Now allows you to consume 10 stacks at a time, down from 15. Now grants 60% increased damage, down from 90%. Now has a 5 sec cooldown, up from 1 sec.

Major Glyphs

Paladin (Forums, Talent Calculator)


  • Beacon of Light now lists a 0 to 60 yd range on the target.
  • Holy Insight now increases the effectiveness of your Word of Glory, Eternal Flame and Light of Dawn by 50%, up from 35%.

Major Glyphs
  • Glyph of the Battle Healer now causes melee attacks from Seal of Insight to heal the most wounded member of your raid or party for 30% of the normal heal instead of you.

Priest (Forums, Talent Calculator)
  • Holy Nova no longer heals all targets, now heals 5. Healing reduced by 80%, but healing is no longer divided between all targets.

Shaman (Forums, Talent Calculator)
  • Healing Rain no longer has a higher threshold for diminishing returns in 25 man instances.

  • Stormstrike no longer grants extra crit to Elemental Blast.

  • Purification now also increases the healing done by your Healing Rain by an additional 100%.

Major Glyphs

Warlock (Forums, Talent Calculator)

Major Glyphs

Warrior (Forums, Talent Calculator)


Raid & Dungeon Abilities
  • Annihilate Inflicts 2,500,000 Inflicts 3,500,000 Shadow damage to enemies within 0 yards in front of the caster. and 325,000 Shadow damage to all enemies in the Realm of Y'Shaarj. Unlimited range. 2.5 sec cast.
  • Bottomless Pit 500 yd range. Instant. Creates a Bottomless Pit at a random enemy's destination that inflicts 100,000 Shadow damage every 1 sec. 500 yd range. Instant.
  • Bubbling Amber An unstable shard of Bubbling Amber periodically expels Amber at Periodically expels a trail of Encapsulated Pheromones in the direction of nearby foes, inflicting 100,000 Fire damage every second to enemies standing in the Amber pool. Unlimited range. Instant. Encapsulated Pheromone pool. Unlimited range. Instant.
  • Chain Heal Infuses a wounded ally with healing energy that spreads to another nearby ally. The spell affects up to 3 9 targets. 40 yd range. 3 sec cast.
  • Corrosive Blast Inflicts 0 Shadow damage and increases Shadow damage taken by 100% 300% for 45 sec. Stacks. Unlimited range. 3 sec cast.
  • Corrosive Blast Inflicts 600,000 Shadow damage and increases Shadow damage taken by 100% 300% for 30 sec. Stacks. Unlimited range. Instant.
  • Corrosive Blood Inflicts 0 Nature damage initially, and then 0 Nature damage every 2 seconds. Limited to 4 targets 1 target. 300 yd range. 3 sec cast.
  • Demonic Volley Ushers the power of his inner demon Ushers great power of Shadow origin, inflicting 150,000 Shadow damage to all nearby players. Unlimited range. 1.9 sec cast. 3 sec cooldown.
  • Desecrated Inflicts 150,000 Shadow damage ever every 1 sec. Unlimited range. Instant.
  • Detonate! (New) Inflicts 0 Fire damage to nearby units, knocking them back and killing the caster. 3 sec cast.
  • Disheartening Laugh Inflicts Shdaow damage to all enemies over 6 sec 500 yd range. 2 sec cast.
  • 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 1.7 min 60 sec. This ability stacks up to 10 times. 300 yd range. 2 sec cast.
  • Enrage Periodically enrages, increasing damage done dealt by 200% but decreasing movement speed by 75%. While enraged, attacks have a chance to shatter the armor of his target, decreasing their armor by 20% for 60 sec 2 min. This effect stacks. Instant. 5 sec cooldown.
  • Expelled Corruption Inflicts 100,000 Shadow damage to the target every second. 100 yd range. Instant. it remains in the Expelled Corruption's path. 100 yd range. Instant.
  • Faith (New) Reduces damage taken by 10%. Unlimited range. Instant.
  • Flame Vents Inflicts 0 Fire damage in a frontal cone, searing the target's flesh for for 0 damage every 1 second. 45 yd range. 3 sec cast.
  • Gusting Charge Charges a distant target, inflicting 200,000 Nautre damage to enemies within 5 yards of that target and leaves behind a trail of wind, inflicting 150,000 Nature damage every second for 30 sec. Unlimited range. Instant. 45 sec. Unlimited range. Instant.
  • Gusting Charge Charges a distant target, inflicting 200,000 Nautre damage to enemies within 5 yards of that target and leaves behind a trail of wind, inflicting 150,000 Nature damage every second for 30 sec. Unlimited range. Instant. 45 sec. Unlimited range. Instant.
  • Icy Blood Inflicts 120,000 Frost damage to random enemies. After 5 stacks, the target will be frozen in a tomb of ice. This ability respects line-of-sight checks. Limited to 4 3 targets. 45 yd range. Instant.
  • Ignite Armor Melts an enemy's armor, increasing Fire damage taken by 10% for 30 sec. This sears the target's flesh for for 0 damage every 1 second. 30 yd range. 3 sec cast.
  • Lingering Corruption Infects the victim with Lingering Corruption that will erupt violently for 300,000 400,000 Shadow damage after 10 sec. 100 yd range. Instant.
  • Mark of Arrogance Marks an enemy, causing them to suffer 70,000 Shadow damage every second for the remainder of the fight. This effect stacks. Removing this effect gives the dispeller 5 Pride This effect is only removed by single target dispels and gives the dispeller 5 Pride when removed. Limited to 2 targets. Instant.
  • Overload Inflicts 100,000 Inflicts 200,000 Nature damage to all enemies, and increases damage dealt by 10%. Stacks up to 20 times. 300 yd range. Instant.
  • Pheromone Cloud (New) Inflicts 30,000 Nature damage every second while alive. Unlimited range. Instant.
  • Reaction: Red Unlimited range. Instant. The catalyst reacts with the toxin in your veins, causing an explosion for 400,000 Fire damage to you and any friends within 10. Unlimited range. Instant.
  • Reaping Whirlwind Inflicts 30,000 Shadow damage every 1 sec. Instant. Couldn't parse description. Instant.
  • Reave The caster inflicts Physical damage to at all enemies. The damage received lessens the farther away the target is. 10 yd range. Instant.
  • Screeching Howl The pterrordax lets out an ear piercing scream dealing 0 Physical damage. 15 yd range. 3 sec cast. Unlimited range. 3 sec cast.
  • Self Doubt The caster reveals the deepest doubts of the victim, causing them to suffer 40% more damage from the Amalgam's next Unleahsed Unleashed Anger. 100 yd range. Instant.
  • Serrated Slash The sawblade slashes nearby targets, inflicting 250,000 50 Physical damage and knocking them back. Instant. 300 yd range. Instant.
  • Serrated Slash The sawblade slashes nearby targets, inflicting 250,000 50 Physical damage and knocking them back. Instant.
  • Shattered Armor Periodically enrages, increasing damage done dealt by 200% but decreasing movement speed by 75%. While enraged, attacks have a chance to shatter the armor of his target, decreasing their armor by 20% for 60 sec 2 min. This effect stacks. Unlimited range. Instant.
  • Shattering Roar Inflicts 250,000 damage to the raid. 500 100 yd range. Instant. 5 sec cooldown.
  • Shear Inflicts 0 Nature damage and inflicts an additional 0 Nature damage every second for 6 sec. Melee range. 3 sec cast. 5 sec cooldown. 2 sec cooldown.
  • Shredding Blast Fires a Shredder Missile at the enemy's destination that does 150,000 Fire damage on impact. 300 yd range. Instant. Enemies caught in the blast suffer 0 Physical damage every 5 sec. over until cancelled. 300 yd range. Instant.
  • Throw Explosives Tosses specialized mantid bombs at enemies bombs that immediately explode for 0 Physical damage to targets within 2 yards. Unlimited range. 3 sec cast.
  • Unleashed Anger Inflicts Inflicts 400,000 Pysical damage to the target. 100 yd range. Instant.
  • Whirling Spins the victim The sonic forces left by Ka'roz's passage inflict 100,000 Physical damage to the target and spins them around in place very rapidly. All players near the victim suffer 0 Physical damage each second. 200 yd range. Instant.
  • Windstorm Creates a torrent of wind that moves around in a spiral. Colliding with the torrent inflicts 250,000 Nature damage. The torrent lasts for 12 15 sec and increases in speed over time. Unlimited range. Instant.
by Published on 2013-08-01 09:10 AM

Jaetch's Archon Guide, New Affixes Among Future Content, Blue Posts, Gamescom 2013: Stage Activities

Fireside Chat Reminder, Leeroy Jenkins Strategy

Patch 5.4 - In-Game Store
The In-Game Store is live on the PTR with a free test currency, and the Enduring Elixir of Wisdom is finally obtainable.

The buff works from level 1 to 89, lasts one hour, persists through death, and only counts down while you are online. The potion is consumed on use.

Patch 5.4 - Mage Glyphs
Patch 5.4 adds three new minor glyphs for mages, all of which modify the Water Elemental.

Level Type Name
25Mage Glyph Glyph of Unbound Elemental
25Mage Glyph Glyph of Evaporation
25Mage Glyph Glyph of Condensation

US Thursday Maintenance
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)
We will be performing scheduled maintenance beginning on Thursday, August 1, at 02:00 AM PDT and we expect the service to be available again at approximately 08:00 AM PDT. During this time the game will be unavailable for play.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Epic Item Prestige
I don’t think this will change any time soon but I must say that I sympathize with what you’re saying, This isn’t a “special snowflake syndrome”. Sure, there might be a little bit of that involved, but it’s mostly a matter of perception, and perception is a very important factor in driving motivation.

If a colour is associated with rarity, that colour becomes important by itself, and that’s something that only the most old school players probably understand, still feel, or miss.

What I’m saying is, there was a time when having 1 single purple item was something absolutely amazing, they were not only the very best items but they were also incredibly rare.

That rarity was a consequence of a combination of many things:
  • Raids were hard to get into.
  • Only a very small minority was actually able to raid.
  • Players were much less skilled than they are nowadays, so killing raid bosses was done at a much slower pace. Content was also updated much less frequently.
  • Apart from the very first 40man raids (Molten Core, Ony), the chance of getting any epic items at all was incredibly small (world drop BoEs)

So the colour purple meant two things, extreme power and rarity. But the game soon evolved, more raids were introduced, and all these new items that came with it were epic.

Nowadays purple means power, rarity hmm… not so much, maybe at the very beginning of an expansion.

But you see, that’s exactly the same that happened in vanilla, the only difference was that raids were a lot less accessible and less diverse (so, less overall chance of getting raid drops), and the patch turnaround with new raid content was much slower, which means, less availability of epic items. There were also no catch up mechanics set in place, so players had to go through all the clearly defined gearing paths of green-blue-purple (quests, 5man, 10man, 40man), and also follow a progression path with raids ZG/MC, Ony, BwL, Naxx.

We don’t want to restrict raiding again to <1% of the player base, and that’s the only way to go back to purple being rare again. Reducing LFR gear to blue wouldn’t make a big difference, there’s plenty of other sources of high ilvl gear that would need to be changed to blue, and even if we did that and only normal + heroic would drop epics, we would never have the same level of rarity as in the old days, content is just so much more diverse, more regularly updated and players are way more skilled. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Patch 5.4 Arena Changes
With this system, and how the wow community is nowadays, why would I even want to play with my friends I might lose with?
If you’re afraid to play rated games with your friends because you don't want to lose matches or rating, then I'm afraid that there is not a lot that can be done to help you with that. The possible losses caused by playing with lesser skilled friends is the same as now though, if you leave your current team to play with some friends and you end up losing, your MMR will drop, which is the key number that matters and influences the way your personal and team ratings change.

If you want to play with friends without a fear of losing rating in the process, then I would recommend playing wargames. We're also looking into bringing back skirmish arenas which will help in this regard, but sadly we have no date set for when they will return.

how do YOU think that community will act towards a person who got twice as much losses than wins in arena
It won't be much different to how it is now for finding partners. If you’re a 1500 player, then generally you're going to greatly struggle finding a 2400+ team that is likely to take you on. Same goes for in 5.4, with a personal rating of 1500 and low win rate you're going to be looking for people with similar ratings or stats. If you're aiming to get partners above your personal level, it won't be easy, finding partners that are around your level and improving yourself with them is the best way to get teammates.

[i] Just going to address this concern here; for those that queue with people who have a low ratings to fight weaker opponents, the players with higher ratings won't get much, if anything, out of those matches. This is because their own personal ratings are above their teams and opponents average.

Additionally, almost all rating exploits in the past have involved some sort of win trading or a loophole in the system itself. We've plugged up any of the loopholes that we've encountered, and due to the higher volume of players in the Arena pool that will be created from the region-wide matchmaking, there will be significantly less opportunity for win trading. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
The fact that the Alliance gives the Horde Org back with no concessions or reparations suck
It's an important Jaina vs Vyrian moment. Who is to say the High King made the right call? (Source)

We ever going to find out why Taran Zhu has it in for the Alliance? The Horde we can see...but he is so wrong about so much.
His goal is to protect Pandaria. He can be a bit xenophobic since outsiders can empower the Sha. (Source)

Do you feel the LORE of Mists could have been stronger? Don't know why we did HoF and ToT, other than, "lets kill stuff!"
What was your motivation behind killing Illidan or Ragnaros? (Source)
Story in that expansion was very compelling. Arthas had a lot of backstory revealed. Scourge felt threatening.
Maybe, though I find it hard to separate what LK taught us vs. what many of us already knew about Arthas from the RTS games. (Source)

we had a reason to want to fight them. no reason to want to kill lei-shen except blizz saying we should.
Arthas, Illidan and Deathwing are easy because many remember them from the RTS days. Illidan was barely present in BC. (Source)
especially since some get outright ignored like Sabellian. i feel like you all forgot who he is.
That particular case is more that we have a cast of 1000s and can't bring them all out every expansion. (Source)

Will the vale turn back to its original state after the whole siege? Seeing all those big black blobs makes me a bit sad.
To be fair, it's supposed to make you sad. (Source)

I have a feeling that y'shaarj is the true baddie in this expansion amirite?
He is dead. (Source)

I'm so sad that Nazgrim gonna die
It's tough because it's always more emotional when you care about the characters involved. The alternate though is not to care. (Source)

what exclusive is there then? Ra-den isn't story relevant. we've never seen him or heard of him
That you initially don't know who he is or how he fits in is WHY he is story relevant. (Source)
Mogu. Titan. Old god. Sha. Mantid. All these things are connected. (Source)

Sometimes it's too obv how little you care about the story/lore of the game.
We care ENORMOUSLY about the story and lore. But we care about gameplay more. (Source)

Will the Alliance receive compensation lore wise (Doesnt have to be in game) after SoO?
They just conquered their enemy's capital. What compensation are you looking for? (Source)
Do Allies gain NOTHING from this war except tens of 1000s dead and their lands stolen? Not even in lore? Goblins keep Azshara
Garrosh is the real problem, not the trolls and goblins. (Source)
Lore-wise we could say that zones changed hands but wouldn't it be lame once you visited them and saw that was not the case? (Source)
It's always a challenge doing a lot of work just for lore reasons unless it comes with awesome gameplay too. (Source)
shouldn't multi-billionaire devs be relishing a challenge rather than cowering away from it??
Or one can argue WoW has been successful because the developers made the right choices about where to focus.... (Source)

Like making the Horde back out of Gilneas and Ashenvale?

I'm a gameplay designer. So what gameplay is there in losing leveling zones for Horde? (Source)
If Alliance players had some interesting way to spend time there, that would be different. (Source)

1st Dwarfs are on the bubble of MOP release then models may make it during MOP. Now it's "they take months" among others.
We never said that. Players just inferred it and got too excited. It makes us have to be careful with what we say. (Source)

Hi, do you have any thoughts yet about 5.0 Challenge Modes for next x-pac?. Will they still be in-game or replaced with new?
Our thought at the moment is to keep the older ones relevant (they do scale) and add new ones. (Source)

Here's a teaser I understand if you don't answer; do you think avoidance on gear is going to make it to 6.0?
I don't expect it will work the day it does today. (Source)

any public word u can offer up on the future of sunsong farms in future expansions?
We don't want you to feel like you have to go visit it forever. It's a MoP feature. It will still be there for you though. (Source)

OpenRaid Event: Icy Veins vs Midwinter Tier 14 Race
Icy Veins will be leading a Horde team and Midwinter will be leading an Alliance team in a race through Tier 14 content on Saturday. Only a few players will be from the groups, as the rest will be filled with regular players. If you are interested in participating, sign up soon!

Dark Legacy Comics #400
DLC #400 has been released.

by Published on 2013-07-31 07:10 AM

The Comma is Coming, Interview with D1 and D2’s Lead Designer, Feedback Needed for a Ladder-Like System, Clarifications on the Console Version

Arena Deck Building Contest, Daily Blue Wrap-up - EU Beta Access, Turn Timer, Pyroblast Buff

Item Level Squish Feedback
Demonstrating why we warn you about taking translated interviews as fact, Ghostcrawler mentioned today that he did not confirm an upcoming item squish, along with answering a few common concerns. You can take part in the ongoing discussion here.
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
mmo-champion says item squish soon confirmed. Please do not regress my character. I worked hard to get him to where he is.
I didn't confirm it. Still we think there are a lot of good reasons to get numbers down to more parsable levels. (Source)
100m, 100k, and 100 are all equally 'parsable'. It's all about formatting.
We describe automobile speed in miles / kilometers per hour and not inches / cms, because big numbers are awkard. (Source)
Exactly. We use KILOmeters per hour. What's the problem with using KILOdamage per second?
That's the mega damage solution, and we're just worried it will look a little silly. You crit for 200 MEGADAMAGE! (Source)

I now have to find 24 other people to do BT/DS/BWL/ICC and follow mechanics just for pets and mog gear? no ty!
I have said several times that item squish would not affect the ability to solo old content. That's not the intent. (Source)

But can you nerf every player without in anyway effecting soloing low level content? Keep everything the same but the numbers?
"If player enters old instance, then buff all their stats." (Source)

Patch 5.4 - Kor'kron Dark Shaman Preview
The Kor'kron Dark Shaman is the 7th encounter in the Siege of Orgrimmar Raid.

Name Points Category
Heroic: Kor'kron Dark Shaman Defeat the Kor'kron Dark Shaman in Siege of Orgrimmar on Heroic difficulty.
10Pandaria Raid
Rescue Raiders Rescue a set of caged prisoners, a group of unwilling combat participants, and Ji Firepaw before defeating the Kor'kron Dark Shaman in Siege of Org...
10Pandaria Raid

Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
  • Spirit Link - Damage dealt is shared between Earthbreaker Haromm and Wavebinder Kardris.
  • Bloodlust - When the Dark Shaman reach 25% health remaining, they will go into a blood frenzy, increasing all damage dealt by 25% and haste by 25%.
  • Darkfang and Bloodclaw - The riding wolves of the Dark Shaman, Darkfang and Bloodclaw will viciously defend their masters.
    • Swipe - Inflicts 300,000 Physical damage to targets in a 8-yard cone in front of the caster.
    • Rend - Viciously rends a player, causing them to bleed for 16,000 Physical damage every 1 sec. for 15 sec. This effect stacks.
  • Totems - The Dark Shaman will drop Totems during the fight that grant them new abilities.
    • Poisonmist Totem - Poisonmist Totem grants Earthbreaker Haromm the Toxic Mist ability, and grants Wavebinder Kardris the Toxic Storm ability. The Dark Shaman drop Poisonmist Totems upon reaching 85% health.
    • Foulstream Totem - Foulstream Totem grants Earthbreaker Haromm the Foul Stream ability, and grants Wavebinder Kardris the Foul Geyser ability. The Dark Shaman drop Foulstream Totems upon reaching 65% health.
    • Ashflare Totem - Ashflare Totem grants Earthbreaker Haromm the Ashen Wall ability, and grants Wavebinder Kardris the Falling Ash ability. The Dark Shaman drop Ashflare Totems upon reaching 45% health.
    • Rusted Iron Totem - Rusted Iron Totem grants Earthbreaker Haromm the Iron Tomb ability, and grants Wavebinder Kardris the Iron Prison ability. The Dark Shaman drop Rusted Iron Totems upon reaching 95% health.
  • Earthbreaker Haromm
    • Froststorm Strike - Strikes a player with frost-lined weapons, inflicting 325,000 Frost damage and causing the player to take 25% additional damage from Froststorm Strike for 30 sec. This effect stacks.
    • Toxic Mist - Injects several players with a toxic mist, inflicting 50,000 Nature damage every 3 sec. for 30 sec and causing growing Toxicity. Due to the internal nature of the corruption, Toxic Mist pierces all immunities. This ability is granted by Poisonmist Totem.
      • Toxicity - Increases Nature damage taken by 10% per stack.
    • Foul Stream - A stream of foul liquid inflicts 220,000 Nature damage to all enemies on a line. This ability is granted by Foulstream Totem.
    • Ashen Wall - Summons a line of stationary Ash Elementals that will attack any nearby enemies. This ability is granted by Ashflare Totem.
    • Iron Tomb - Inflicts 500,000 Physical damage to players within 3 yards and creates an Iron Tomb. This ability is granted by Rusted Iron Totem.
  • Wavebinder Kardris
    • Froststorm Bolt - Fires a bolt of bitter frost, inflicting 450,000 Frost damage.
    • Toxic Storm - Summons a powerful toxic storm that inflicts 300,000 Nature damage to players within 9 yards every 2 sec. and periodically creates Toxic Tornadoes. The storm will move around and lasts for 60 sec. This ability is granted by Poisonmist Totem.
      • Toxic Tornado - Toxic winds inflict 300,000 Nature damage to players within 5 yards every 1 sec. and knock them up.
    • Foul Geyser - Conjure foul water that inflicts 450,000 Nature damage to players within 4 yards every 0.5 sec. for 8 sec. Each splash creates a Foul Slime. This ability is granted by Foulstream Totem.
      • Foul Slime - Foul Slimes are coated in Foulness.
        • Foulness - Inflicts 150,000 Nature damage to players within 3 yards every 1 sec.
    • Falling Ash - Summons a core of smouldering ash that will fall over 30 sec. Inflicts 999,999 Fire damage to players within 17 yards and 160,000 Fire damage to all players on impact. This ability is granted by Ashflare Totem.
    • Iron Prison - Encases the player in a prison of iron that slowly asphyxiates them, inflicting 100% of maximum health as Physical damage after 60 sec. This ability is granted by Rusted Iron Totem.

Raid Testing Schedule - July 31-Aug 1
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
On Wednesday and Thursday, July 31 and August 1, we will continue testing raid encounters in the Siege of Orgrimmar raid. We're moving on to 10-player Heroic testing at this time and finishing up 10-player Normal, and will 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.

Wednesday, July 31
Galakras - 10 Player Normal - 10:30 PDT (13:30 EDT, 19:30 CEST)
Garrosh Hellscream - 10 Player Normal - 16:00 PDT (19:00 EDT, 01:00 CEST)

Thursday, August 1
Kor'kron Dark Shaman - 10 Player Heroic - 13:30 PDT (16:30 EDT, 22:30 CEST)
General Nazgrim - 10 Player Heroic - 16:00 PDT (19:00 EDT, 01:00 CEST)

Patch 5.4 - Change to RPPM Mechanics
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
We think the cooldown lineup at the start of PvE encounters has gotten out of hand, and it’s having some rather negative effects on gameplay. Particularly with the number of RPPM procs most raiders have these days, the pull has just become way too important. It’s affecting gearing, it’s punishing classes that can’t capitalize on it as well as others, and it’s not how we’d like raiding to work.

To that end, we’re going to make another change to how RPPM mechanics work on the pull. Starting a raid encounter will set every RPPM proc’s “time since last proc” to 90 seconds. That means the more frequent procs will still be more or less guaranteed to go off, but the rarer (and more powerful) procs will just have a high chance. This should hopefully chill things out a little bit, without changing how you play too dramatically.

Can we clarify what 'rarer' RPPM procs are? We talking the meta-gem here?
We're not changing the actual RPPM proc rates at all, just how much time is "banked" before the pull. The underlying math that determines what the actual chances are isn't changing.

So, here's a couple hypothetical examples using very rough napkin math. I don't remember RPPMs for actual trinkets off the top of my head (and they're not particularly necessary for illustration purposes):

Trinket A has an RPPM that allows it to reach a 100% proc chance if it hasn't fired after 60 seconds. This trinket will have a guaranteed proc on the pull.

Trinket B has an RPPM that allows it to reach a 100% proc chance if it hasn't fired after 100 seconds. It will not be guaranteed to proc immediately, but will proc within the first 10 seconds.

Trinket C has an RPPM that allows it to reach a 100% proc chance after 2 minutes. It will not be guaranteed to proc immediately (regardless of how much time you've spent out of combat), but will proc within the first 30 seconds.

Make sense?

My 502 UVLS doesn't have a guaranteed proc chance 2 minutes in though. Lore's example needs a trinket D, which is only guaranteed in excess of 6 minutes of no procs.
This is true -- some trinkets will now be unlikely to proc immediately (which is the point of the change). However, it should be noted that it's extremely unlikely for any RPPM proc to take until it hits a 100% chance to activate anyway.

Guilds are still going to wait. This change is good, but it's not good enough.
Aside from the fact that most groups wouldn't be ready for another pull within 90 seconds anyway, waiting has no effect whatsoever. As soon as a raid encounter is pulled, the time since last proc for all RPPM mechanics in the raid will be set to exactly 90 seconds. Doesn't matter if it's been 10 seconds or 10 minutes since the last pull.

I do want to say, this is distinctly a nerf to fun. It WAS A LOT of fun to open up full force pot, cloak, enchant, 2xtrinkets, meta, stormlash, + elemental + lava burst. I was hitting 75,000 spellpower
I feel like the "nerf to fun" argument gets overstated quite a bit. We're not nerfing it because it was fun, we're nerfing it because it was breaking the game.

I'm sure a lot of players would find it fun to be able to take down Heroic Lei Shen with a single spell. That doesn't make it good gameplay.

I'm skeptical to the idea that not getting a proc in the initial burst will somehow make these trinkets not worth using. After that first proc on the pull, the time since last proc is 0 anyway. It'll tone back the initial burst, definitely, but I'm not convinced that the entire value of a trinket like Unerring Vision of Lei Shen depends on that first proc.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Patch 5.4 Arena Changes
Yeah, i miss the teamnames but the patch is still going to be really good.
We understand that there are some players that will miss the customization and comradeship that came with arena teams. We're looking into ways in which we will be able to retain these particular feelings in arena after these changes occur, but at this time we don't have anything to share in this regard.

I wonder how the ladders will look now. Players with highest ratings etc? I hope they thought this through thoroughly.
The ladders will show individual players and their rankings will be based off of their personal rating. End of season rewards will still be awarded in the same manner as they are now, to the top "X"% of competitors, the percentage of course being different depending on the reward.

So it's all 100% individual? If I play with a team to 2600 and one of my teammates ends on 2560 and cutoff is 2570 he wont get a reward?
Well, while you may play with a few specific players and you consider yourselves a team, you're not actually in a set team. But this is also the case as if he also got the title just for playing with you, because there are no teams in 5.4 you could also feed the title to anyone that you wanted who was just under the cutoff.

Don't encourage wintrading...
I feel that I need to clarify on my last post as there was some misunderstanding of what I meant. I was not promoting win trading, nor was I saying that you will be able to feed your end of season rewards to others. I wanted to point out that if the system worked as Easydragon questioned, then you could feed your rewards to others if they were just under the cut-off because there are no set teams. Don't worry as you won't be able to feed the title to others by playing with them, the rewards are based off of your own personal ratings alone.

I apologize for any confusion my post may have caused, I have now rephrased it to clarify the above points. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Utility and Hunters
So, this isn't solely specific to Hunters, but since it's an issue I see you guys bring up a lot, I want to talk briefly about "utility."

From a top-down perspective, our design philosophy regarding utility goes something like this: everyone brings some sort of benefit to the group, but no one gets an invite based solely on that benefit. We feel that current class mechanics satisfy the first part of that. We're mostly there with the second half, with some exceptions.

Sometimes we just make something too strong to the point that it feels mandatory. That's absolutely true. A current example would be Demonic Gateway, particularly in PvE. It gives a very large benefit in many encounters, and since more Gateways are nearly always a good thing, many raid teams will seek to bring as many Warlocks as they can (though obviously, Warlock DPS has been a factor as well). In that particular case, we're making some changes in 5.4 and, if necessary, may continue to make changes.

The reason I bring that up is that it has the tendency to cast a harsher light than is probably fair on other classes. We feel that, ignoring the extreme outliers like Demonic Gateway, Hunters bring an acceptable amount of utility. Every Hunter has Trueshot Aura and access to an array of buffs and debuffs through their pets (even if not specced Beast Mastery), and abilities like Misdirection and Ice Trap which can be valuable on some encounters. If that's not enough utility to guarantee you a raid invite... then good. We'd rather you get your invite by being a solid raider with good performance.

I'm also slightly confused as to the logic behind some arguments, specifically those along the lines of "our DPS is low, so we need more utility to justify our raid slot." If that's the case, wouldn't you prefer we fix your damage output and/or tone down the overperformers?

I know this doesn't address every concern that's been brought up, and I apologize for that. If and when we have more to share, we will. But I did want to at least shed some light on our thoughts on the "utility" issue overall, for the sake of discussion.

Oh, one thing I can share: we like the idea of removing the focus cost from Dash, so we're going to. That includes Dive and Charge as well.

As has been mentioned in other "utility" threads, part of the problem here is that nobody agrees on what "utility" is. Is the dev definition of the word something you can shed a little light on? (I realize that may raise the "it's a trap!" alarm, so feel free to ignore if you think that would do more harm than good.)

My own working definition for a few years now has been: anything that is beneficial to the group, while in combat, that doesn't pertain directly to my personal performance in my role. Which basically, for a DPS class, would mean anything that doesn't cause me and only me to deal additional damage, and isn't an out-of-combat thing like summoning.

This is probably pretty close to our definition. As you mention, it's the sort of thing that I'd be hesitant to try to define precisely (it's something of a fluid term even internally).

Do you think it's fair that certain abilities (namely Ancient Hysteria and battle rez) are locked to Beast Mastery only? If it's a 25 man situation, probably, but in 10 man you do run the issue of not having either of these. Sometimes that could lead to Hunter's feeling as though they must have Beast Mastery as a spec.
It's something I can bring up again, but we do like these as Beast Mastery perks. Note that, at least in the case of Ancient Hysteria, 5.4 is adding Drums of Rage (a consumable form of Bloodlust/Heroism made by Leatherworkers) that, while not quite as effective as the Beast Mastery buff, should make things at least a little more flexible for 10-mans. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Death Knight (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
RPPM scaling with Runespeed Mechanics
As an update to this, since we've seen some confusion, Improved Unholy Presence is getting the same treatment as Unholy Presence, meaning it will now grant additional haste, not just additional attack speed and rune regen. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

PTR Testing and You
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
From Zul’Gurub and Ahn’Qiraj onward, we have made extensive use of our Public Test Realms in order to help find bugs and improve the tuning of our raid content. We have an extensive team of Quality Assurance testers and an internal raid group, but it’s impossible to replicate the sheer breadth of information we get from having hundreds of real raid groups attempting diverse strategies as they experience encounters for the first time. We learn a tremendous amount from that testing, both in the form of written feedback on these forums, which is carefully read by every encounter designer, and from spectating raids and observing how they fare.

Now, that’s what we get out of the PTR. Speaking pragmatically, we understand that not everyone's motivation in logging on to the PTR is to give us feedback. They want to check out the new content firsthand, see what’s coming to the live servers in a few weeks or months, and, in the case of raiding, get some competitive edge that will help them clear the content faster on the live servers when the patch is released. That’s fine. We thoroughly appreciate everyone who takes the time to give measured feedback, or goes out of their way to methodically test new features and report bugs they find. But at the end of the day, we’d rather have a packed PTR with a small percentage giving direct feedback, than a nearly-empty PTR where everyone gives it. Bugs that require very specific conditions are much more likely to occur with thousands of testers than with hundreds, and it’s clearly beneficial to everyone for us to find and fix those issues before they affect millions in a live environment.

When it comes to raid testing in particular, there’s a symbiotic relationship: The bleeding-edge guild that intentionally wipes to a boss at 5% so they can set up their boss addons, try out unusual strategies, and practice execution is there for competitive reasons. But we gain information even just from silently observing that will help us make our encounters better, and fundamentally, that is the purpose of raid testing on PTR. Our raid testing times are scheduled to coincide with our core work hours, so that designers can observe as much of the testing as possible, with the exception of LFR and Flexible tests which require more open-ended scheduling given their nature and target audience (and even then, if you were doing a PTR Flexible raid this past weekend, odds are decent that I or another developer was spying on your group – creepy, I know). When it comes to Heroic testing, we try to keep the testing windows as brief as possible, in order to minimize the impact of PTR testing on the progression “race.”

But that symbiotic relationship requires that we be around in some capacity to observe. Players who find a way to access bosses (especially Heroic bosses) that aren’t currently being tested should let us know, so we can correct the problem. We discovered that over the weekend a progression raid group accessed the Siege of Orgrimmar raid and spent hours on a Heroic boss in the middle of the night, after copying fresh characters with generic names, presumably with the hope of going unnoticed. Those actions go against the intent of the PTR, the spirit of fair play, and were clearly intended to go against our wishes for specific boss testing periods. PTR testing is a privilege, and we reserve the right to revoke PTR access from those who have shown an intent to abuse it.

If you come across an oversight in our testing protocols, or a serious, abusable bug or exploit in the course of your testing of a boss encounter on PTR, and you want to let us know without alerting everyone, please note that we can read edited or deleted forum posts. (On the live servers, please use the in-game bug reporting interface.) Otherwise, carry on with the fantastic feedback that we’ve been receiving about all facets of 5.4 content thus far, and we look forward to seeing you on the Public Test Realm!

Blizzard Art Update
Blizzard added five pieces to the World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria Art gallery.

by Published on 2013-07-30 11:21 AM

Hotfix: Gold Stack Size Increased on RMAH, Tips on Trading Safely, D2's Official Forums Still Active

Hearthstone Puzzle #5 - Secrets, Captain Greenskin Strategy, TCG Art Gallery Update

Patch 5.4 - Ghostcrawler Interview
Ghostcrawler was in Asia last week and QQ was able to sit down with him for an interview. Keep in mind that things are often lost in translation or mistranslated! Thanks to ngacnlcq for the translation.

  • The item level squish might take place next expansion. (See tweet)
  • There is still no timeline for the DotA battleground release.
  • The Hearthstone board that was added in a PTR build is just for decoration and there is no plan to add Hearthstone to WoW.
  • The Lesser Charms that may be added to the Asian store are there as a convenience item for players that may not have time to do their daily quests that week or players who just want to save time. There are no plans to add items to the store that will increase player stats.
  • Patch 5.4 is the last content (raid?) patch, but there will be bugfix and balance patches after it, as well as a pre-expansion patch.
  • If a fourth class role was ever implemented, it might provide buffs or support, but it would be a big change to the game and is very unlikely to happen.

Patch 5.4 - Timeless Isle Armor
The Timeless Isle will allow players to obtain item level 496 and 535 gear through drops found around the island.

The items used to create the 496 armor are found all over the island in chests and dropped by mobs, similar to the items used to create armor in Battlefield: Barrens. The Burden of Eternity is a rare drop from mobs, found in the Blazing Chest, or in one of Kukuru's chests.

The item level 535 version of the gear is called "Timeless" and is obtained by using a Burden of Eternity on an item that creates armor, such as a Timeless Leather Helm.

Patch 5.4 normal difficulty gear has an item level of 553, while flex gear is 540, and raid finder gear is 528. This makes the 535 Timeless gear a nice upgrade for players that will only raid in Raid Finder difficulty and a temporary upgrade for players who will be raiding Flex difficulty. It is also an upgrade for players who are currently raiding Throne of Thunder Normal, as well as any Heroic raiders still missing a slot.

Type Role Normal (496) Timeless (535)
Plate ArmorStrength TankElder TortoiseshellElder Tortoiseshell
Plate ArmorStrength DPSCliffbreakerCliffbreaker
Plate ArmorIntellect HealerEverbrightEverbright
Mail ArmorAgility DPSCrimsonscaleCrimsonscale
Mail ArmorIntellect DPS/HealerOrdon Legend-KeeperOrdon Legend-Keeper
Leather ArmorAgility Tank/DPSCranefeatherCranefeather
Leather ArmorIntellect DPS/HealerFire-ChanterFire-Chanter
Cloth ArmorPure Intellect DPSCloudscorcherCloudscorcher
Cloth ArmorIntellect DPS/HealerAmaranthineAmaranthine
Timeless LavalliereAllNecklacesNecklaces
Timeless CloakAllCloaksCloaks
Timeless SignetAllRingsRings
Timeless CurioTank
Strength DPS
Agility DPS
Intellect DPS
Resolve of Niuzao
Alacrity of Xuen
Discipline of Xuen
Yu'lon's Bite
Contemplation of Chi-Ji
Resolve of Niuzao
Alacrity of Xuen
Discipline of Xuen
Yu'lon's Bite
Contemplation of Chi-Ji

Patch 5.4 PTR Official Patch Notes Update - July 29
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Death Knight (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • General
    • Unholy Presence now grants a flat 10% Haste to all things, up from Haste for melee (attack speed and Rune regeneration) only. The movement speed buff remains unchanged.
    • Fixed a bug that caused Improved Blood Presence and Runic Corruption to incorrectly increase activation rates of some trinkets and effects.
  • Unholy
    • Ghoul's Leap and Gnaw abilities are no longer on a global cooldown, and no longer cost Energy.

Hunter (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Talents
  • Glyphs
    • New Major Glyphs
      • Glyph of Enduring Deceit: Camouflage also reduces spell damage taken by 10%

Mage (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Talents
    • Rune of Power now has an increased effective range. The Mage can remain up to 8 yards away from their Rune of Power and still receive benefits to mana regeneration and spell damage (up from 3 yards).

Monk (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Brewmaster
    • Fixed a bug that caused the damage of some abilities for Brewmasters with Vengeance to scale incorrectly.

Paladin (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Holy
    • Judgment for Holy Paladins now costs 12% of base mana to cast (up from 5% of base mana).
  • Talents
    • Sacred Shield for Holy Paladins can now be active on more than one target at a time, but the talent now costs mana, and has 3 charges with a 10-second recharge. cooldown.

Priest (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Talents
    • Psyfiend health has been reduced by 75%, but fixed a bug where Psyfiend wasn't being affected by base Resilience.

Shaman (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Talents
    • Totemic Restoration has been replaced with a new talent, Totemic Persistence.
      • New talent: Totemic Persistence. Summoning a second totem of the same element no longer causes the first totem to be destroyed. Only one non-Fire totem can benefit from this effect at a time.

Warlock (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • General
  • Affliction
    • Drain Soul no longer energizes Soul Shards from the pets and guardians of players, and now deals 40% less damage. If other periodic Affliction damage effects are triggered by Drain Soul, they now deal 60% of their normal damage (down from 100%).
    • Haunt now deals 50% more damage, and increases damage done by all of the Warlock's damage-over-time other spells against the target by 45%.
  • Talents
  • Class Armor
    • Warlock Tier-14 4-piece set bonus now reduces the cooldown of Unending Resolve by 20 seconds. increases all damage dealt by the Warlock by 10% while Dark Soul is active.

  • Indomitable Primal Diamond's chance for the meta-gem effect to activate is no longer affected by the wearer’s haste. Additionally, the chance to activate the effect has been increased by 50%.
  • [PTR]: For testing purposes, Glyphataur, Ph.D (He's a doctor!) will be available near the Alliance/Horde shrines in Vale of Eternal Blossoms selling new glyphs.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Past Legendary Items for Patch 5.4
The legendary meta gem will still function, but Sha-touched gems and sockets will not be applicable to new 5.4 items.

No extra sockets in 5.4? Then why the hell did you update the 5.2 weapons from ToT to be able to use them? This is incredibly stupid and seems like a total oversight. 1750g for a new weapon socket is SO not that expensive.
We updated the 5.2 weapons to allow the additional socket (but not the Sha-touched gems) because a very large number of players were getting their extra sockets just in time for the patch to drop (and thus, would only be able to use their reward for a week or two). That's not the case with 5.4. The 5.2 legendary meta gem will continue to function, and the 5.3 epic cloak will upgrade into the 5.4 legendary.

We feel that, at this point, the Sha-Touched gem and socket have had plenty of time to be useful and it's time for them to go. As Lothrik mentioned, we'll be balancing content assuming that they're not present anyway. That said, nothing on the PTR is final, and we are still open to discussion on the topic. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Proving Grounds Feedback
Just a quick note that we're still doing a lot of tuning for Proving Grounds, and your feedback has been (and continues to be) invaluable. There will be a bunch more bug fixes and tweaks in the next build for testing.

In particular, the next build has a lot of work done on the AI for the friendly party members in the Healer trials. Once it hits the PTR, we'd really appreciate any feedback on how they're acting, especially specific examples of things they do that seem "dumb." I don't have an exact timeframe on when that build will go up, but it should be within the next few days (UPDATE: should be today!) (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Death Knight (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
RPPMScaling with Rune Regeneration Mechanics
After some investigation, we found that rune regeneration mechanics were, indeed, giving an unintended increase to RPPM proc rates. Unholy in particular gains a significant performance boost from this bug. We're going to fix the bug, but we'll also be compensating Unholy.

In the next build, Unholy Presence will give pure haste, rather than just attack speed. This will allow it to (legitimately) increase proc rates for RPPM mechanics. Runic Corruption and Improved Blood Presence, however, will no longer have an effect on RPPM proc rates. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

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

by Published on 2013-07-28 06:23 PM

Cosmetic Helm winners have been PMed, so please log in and check your PMs. Winners have 72 hours to reply.

Vote for Diablo III's CMs, Blue Posts, Lion and Pan's Diablo Motorcycle

The Arena Recap, Ben and Eric's Mage Deck, Fireside Chat #6

Patch 5.4 - Stormcrow Mount
The Stormcrow mount may not show up in game with Patch 5.4, just like the Enchanted Fey Dragon.

Ghostcrawler Interview
Ghostcrawler has been in Asia this week and PlayersCut was able to sit down with him for an interview.

  • Patch 5.4 is the final raid patch for Mists of Pandaria and ends with players defeating Garrosh and setting events in motion for a new warchief. Unfortunately, we will have to wait a little bit longer to see who that will be.
  • The devs aren't ready to talk about any WoW 10th anniversary events yet, but they are still working on plans for it.
  • The team takes more of a long term view of when making changes now. They are thinking about not only the next expansion, but the one after that when they make changes.
  • The amount of class spells has continued to rise over the years, so Mists of Pandaria made an attempt to cut down on the excess. Future expansions will make a bigger effort to do so as well.
  • Adding additional spell effects for classes is nice, but it has to be balanced with adding even more visual noise to raid encounters. Bosses and player skills that are used less frequently will likely get the more impressive effects, rather than the filler spells used in rotations.
  • There are a few leveling areas that need stronger guards, such as around the Dark Portal in Blasted Lands.
  • Adding a new classes has to be done cautiously, but adding another hero class in the future is still a possibility.
  • Monks were not a hero class because the low level story of the Wandering Isle fit them very well, but their population is still low due to having to level them up from level 1.
  • WoW won't be going free to play anytime soon, as Blizzard is happy with the current business model. Even if they wanted to make it into a microtransaction based game, it couldn't be done with how gameplay works today.
  • The devs want people to be able to catch up faster so that they can play with friends, which is why they are testing the experience buff and other convenience items in the Blizzard store. There is no desire to move towards a pay to win style game.

Patch 5.3 Hotfixes - July 26
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
  • Spirit of Warlord Teng should now properly give credit towards the It Was Worth Every Ritual Stone achievement when defeated.

Isle of Thunder
  • Additional fixes for situations where players using incantations to summon bosses were receiving the error message "You can't do that right now."

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
FEEDBACK: Vale of Eternal Sorrows (Flexible)
Creature health and damage should scale completely dynamically as people come and go, as well as mechanics interactions such as the number of puddles into which Immerseus splits. The number by your minimap should be an accurate indication of your current instance group size.

For testing purposes (mostly internal convenience on our end), you can currently queue with a fairly small group, but nothing will actually scale below a 10-player size. When we release 5.4, we're intending to require a minimum of 8 players to queue. The thought there is that you might want to begin clearing the instance or at least zone in and get ready while waiting on a latecomer 9th/10th, and if we set the queue limit strictly to 10, that wouldn't be possible. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

DPS Legendary gem no longer procs for tanks
One extra note: we will be buffing the Tank (Indomitable) meta gem in a future build. We'll be removing the haste scaling from its proc chance, but increasing its base chance by 50%. That should make it activate much more regularly, even for tanks who stack haste, than the previous iteration.

We recognize that a lot of tanks are preferring the DPS meta gem at the moment, and we'd like to correct that, but we'd like to do it by making you like the tank gem, not by nerfing the DPS gem. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Legendary Cloacks and Procs Feedback
It's that easy? It doesn't take 3 months of raiding Siege of Orgrimmar to get the legendary cloak? We can get the cloaks the day 5.4 goes live???
Assuming you're all caught up on the quest, yes! You should be able to get your legendary cloak pretty quickly once Patch 5.4 hits.

The reasoning is simple: we want you to be able to use it for progression. Past legendaries (including the earlier bits of the Mists of Pandaria chain) have typically taken a pretty decent amount of time before you're able to get them. That's great for heading into the next tier (or finishing up the current one), but when the next tier is in a new expansion, it can leave them feeling a little... flat. You end up using them mostly for farm, and then you replace them once the next expansion hits and you outlevel them.

It also feels a little strange thematically. "We need to properly gear you for the fight against the Lich King so uh... go kill the Lich King!" Bit awkward, but required for gameplay purposes. A legendary doesn't feel terribly legendary if there's no effort involved in obtaining it.

So, since you've been working so closely with Wrathion over the course of the expansion already, it makes sense that he'd want to equip you properly for the final resolution of the Alliance vs Horde conflict -- before you set foot in Orgrimmar. And since you've put in so much effort up til this point (starting in patch 5.0 and continuing up through patch 5.3), we don't really need to add more.

We've obviously been experimenting a bit with how players earn legendaries in this expansion, so continued feedback (both on how you earn them as well as the actual legendary items themselves) is extremely valuable. Thanks!

Is it possible to examine how the legendary cloak works for Hunters? Having it work as a frontal cone in front of our pets just seems to be working very wonky due to the nature of pet mechanics and AI.
We actually have an alternate proc in the works for Hunters, we just weren't able to get it ready in time for this PTR push. Giving you the melee proc off of your pets was just a temporary measure. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Shaman (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Enhancement Tier 16 Bonus
Indeed! We agree that the 5.3 Enhancement rotation isn't ideal for some AoE situations, and we're keeping a close eye on how the Enhancement Tier 16 4-piece bonus plays out. Depending on how that goes, we may either make it (or something similar) baseline, or try something else entirely. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Please don't take away dodge and parry in the next expac off gear. Please
Why? What is fun about it as a stat on gear? (Source)
Please take away hit/expertise, or in some way fix re-reforging every item for every upgrade!
Reforge didn't work out as we hoped. Became a hassle not a bonus or convenience. (Source)
Why not shift the majority of tank game play to active mitigation? Its far more fun and interesting that way (to me at least).
There's a good chance we will post 5.4. (Source)

Now that we're approaching the end of MoP. What class/classes do you think need a big overhaul in 6.0?
None. We will likely work to make the 3 hunter and rogue specs play a little more differently from each other. (Source)
Keep bomb up, use filler spell, use procs. Which mage spec am I talking about?
Keep up X, Use filler spell and use procs is pretty much every spec in the game. (Source)

Hunter (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
splitting up black arrow and explosive trap cds makes sense. Still trying to understand why LnL won't proc form explosive.
Explosive Trap as part of ST rotation would be annoying. That's why we added Black Arrow in the first place. (Source)

Paladin (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
And AE healing is just too strong. Why cast 4 HL when I can just cast 1 HR and achieve roughly the same in 1/4 time?
The idea is supposed to be the HR is wasted mana if it overheals. If it does not overheal, then it was the appropriate choice. (Source)
But it's hard to make mana not brutal in 5s and still have it be meaningful in the final raid tier. (Source)

may I ask how you feel about ret paladins mechanically at the moment in PVE? I love how they feel right now, hoping no changes
Happy with them for 5.4. Long term want to make sure they have talent choices, make AE more dynamic, and consider Inq some more. (Source)

is change to Illuminated Healing (once again proc'ing from periodic heals) a data mining error, or an actual change?
Stay of Exec is a periodic and is affected. Hot of EF is not. (Source)

Priest (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
I just feel like Blizzard doesn't know what to do with Disc Priests, PoH is still party based (inc next tweet)
You guys overplay the "don't know what to do with" card. Disc is really well designed (and fun) IMO, just a bit too good. (Source)
In what way is it well designed? Two major spells very restricted, and there isn't a cap to go to, just mass go for crit...
I would argue with the contentions that restricted spells are a bad thing or caps to shoot for are a good thing. (Source)

consider random fights like h:iron qon. Spirit Shell is already hard to use there, at 10 sec will be just completely useless.
Worried that Disc has felt like the premiere healer for MoP. They need some limitation somewhere... (Source)

Can you please explain the intention behind decreased duration to ss? Disc seemed balanced in 25 but less so in 10s...
Disc would be balanced with Atonement or good bubbles or good CDs. With all 3, they are too versatile. (Source)
Atonement is fun and we like seeing more PW:S use now than we had in 5.0, so we (gently) hit SS and Rapture. (Source)

Shaman (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
shaman get good talent "Totemic Persistence". Then "Does not affect Fire totems." shaman get crappy talent.
If it's the only DPS increase on a row, then it's the only choice, and therefore a crappy talent in our minds. (Source)

Warlock (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Final tidbit: I do actually REALLY like the Warlock revamp. Why not just give one to all pure classes?
I think the jury is still out on whether the excitement of the change outweighs the magnitude of the change. (Source)
By which I mean, we probably lost some locks who didn't like the change or know how to play their class any longer. (Source)

Warrior (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
Errr.. this whole SS-Slam AoE 2-yards thingymajig seems a little ... peculiar. Could you explain your thinking?
Slam used to have some distinction b/c of the cast time. Wasn't popular overall but kinda generic now. This is an attempt to fix. (Source)

More sub lose, more dead servers, more upset people. Do you get how they relate to each other? Maybe you should address this.
I don't think the connections are as obvious as they seem to you, but we have been sharing a bit of our plan for low pop realms. (Source)

Most players don't care about PTR Isn't it a bit dangerous to get feedback from just the few that join?
Many players send us feedback on changes without logging on. Useful as well, just less so. (Source

GC, IMO you've brought alot of good to the game, but you've also killed it's soul by simplifying it.
I'm not sure a lot of our players are asking for more complexity. Otoh, I see the opposite frequently. (Source)

Do you think some tooltips could be rewritten to sound 'cooler' or to have more flavor?
I think so. I feel like our tooltips have become too "lawyerly," attempting to explain every nuance. (Source)

Are you serious?So the guy who was the nicest should get free loot even if he was carried and was bad?
Maybe the game would be better with more low DPS nice guys and fewer high DPS jerks? (Source)

why do you think people see exclusive content as a bad thing?
ITT it's a velvet rope. Exclusivity works when everyone wants something but only a few get it. (Source)
If everyone gets it, the reward is considered less valuable. (Source)

Oh my god I love you, thanks for all the responses. The people on MMO-Champion will be happy you guys saw the post.
We read those forums all the time. There is good stuff in there (there is a lot of I FEEL NEGLECTED too, which waters it down). (Source)
I'm not trying to dictate what players should post, especially in forums that aren't ours. (Source)
I'm just providing the feedback that a good signal to noise ratio makes it more efficient for players (or devs!) to read. (Source)

Change isnt always good. Having to adapt with every patch should NOT be the overall design.
Totally agree. (Source)

I've always wanted to be an Idea Man in a think tank. And I've been a Blizzard fan since D1. I'd do the fans justice!
To be honest the job is like 1% idea man and 99% getting shit to work. (Source)

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