World of Warcraft News and Raiding Strategies RSS Feed

by Published on 2017-02-15 02:35 AM

PTR Patch Primal Ancient, Greater Rift Changes

Vote For Your Favourite Community Created New Reno Cards!

Patch 7.1.5 Hotfixes - February 14
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Dungeons and Raids
  • The Nighthold
    • Nighthold bosses should always drop Artifact Power.

Player versus Player
  • Dalaran Underbelly
    • The number of players who can be targeted by Screek’s Focused Gust has been reduced.
    • The number of players who can be targeted by Crazed Mage's Playing With Fire has been reduced.
  • Priest (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator / Artifact Calculator / PvP Talent Calculator)
    • Ray of Hope should now continue to affect the target even if the Priest becomes crowd-controlled or is killed during its duration.

PTR Build Deploy 2/14/2017
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Deploy Update:
We ran into an issue and are going to have to put the deploy on-hold for tonight. Gunna work some things out and hopefully get servers back online sometime tomorrow. I'll provide a more accurate window when I have one. Thanks for your patience everyone!

PTR Development Notes - Build 23578
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
We’ve got another heavy content push to the PTR this week, so here’s a quick rundown of the biggest things you’ll see available for testing:

We’re ready to start testing flying on the Broken Isles, as well as the quest chains to earn your Class Mounts. The actual processes to unlock these features are still in development, so for testing purposes, we’ve added a temporary NPC in front of the Menagerie in Dalaran that will grant you both parts of the Pathfinder achievement and start you on the quest to earn your Class Mount. Please let us know if you encounter any areas around the Broken Isles where flying isn’t working properly (e.g., getting dismounted in midair), or if you have any issues with the Class Mount quests.

7.2’s new 5-player dungeon – the Cathedral of Eternal Night – is open, and should be available for testing in its entirety. Please let us know what you think!

This build also has a significant number of changes and improvements to the Mythic+ system:
  • Mythic Keystones can now direct you to three new dungeons: the Cathedral of Eternal Night, Upper Karazhan, and Lower Karazhan.
  • Several new affixes have been added to the mix: Bursting, Fel Explosives, Quaking, and Grievous.
  • Bolstering, Necrotic, Skittish, Fortified, Tyrannical, and Sanguine have been adjusted, and Overflowing has been removed.
  • Some boss and trash mechanics have been adjusted (for example, Seagulls will now grant Enemy Forces credit in Eye of Aszhara).
  • For PTR testing, Flaskataur in Dalaran will sell a Keystone Container, and affixes will be on a 4-hour rotation (instead of weekly).

On top of those changes, we’ve re-adjusted the way that Artifact Power is awarded from running Keystone dungeons, with the goal of better rewarding you for the time it takes to complete each dungeon. Longer dungeons such as Halls of Valor will now award a proportionately higher amount of AP, and shorter dungeons such as Maw of Souls will award proportionately less.

In addition, we’ve added an Artifact Power bonus to your weekly chest, which increases based on the highest level Keystone you completed. You’ll earn the largest AP bonus for completing a Level 10 or higher Mythic Keystone. Our goal here is to shift the AP rewards from Mythic+ slightly more in favor of completing higher-level Keystones, and less toward endlessly farming lower-level ones. This should also greatly increase the amount of Artifact Power you can earn on alts without requiring as much direct time investment.

Notably absent from this build are the new Broken Shore World Bosses, as well as a few improvements to the process of acquiring Legendaries. We’ll have more details on those changes as they get closer to implementation.

Happy testing!

Hotfix - Nighthold Bosses Now Guarenteed to Drop AP Items
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
This is a step in the right direction. Next step is for Blizzard to adjust AP rewards from Mythic raids. If I full clear Nighthold on mythic difficulty in 4-5 hours, I should be getting the most AP/hour possible. A +10 is nowhere near as difficult and is usually much more efficient than the hardest PvE content that the game has to offer.
We agree that Nighthold in particular needs to be a better source of Artifact Power than it has been, but that change won't be happening with Patch 7.2.

Because it'll be in 7.1.5.

And it went live via hotfix this morning.


(Nighthold bosses are now guaranteed to drop AP items)

Artifact Power
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Just a quick note: the 7.2 Artifact Knowledge and Artifact Power curves that have been datamined are not final - what you're seeing is just temporary values. With those temporary values, the increase from Artifact Knowledge scales linearly, while the Artifact Power required to purchase the next trait increases exponentially. This makes it seem as though the new traits are intended to require far more effort to earn than was the case in 7.0, which is not the case.

The PTR build coming today doesn't yet have the correct numbers, but next week's build should. At that point, you should see a much lower expectation for how much effort will be required to unlock the new traits.

It's important to remember that the PTR is very much a part of our development environment. When we pull a build to push for public testing, it's basically just a snapshot of wherever we happened to be at that moment in development. This means you're going to see a lot of placeholder and unfinished work. This is one such case.

Feedback is certainly helpful for us in determining exactly what the final state should be, but please remember that there's a very reasonable chance for anything on the PTR - especially datamined content that's not yet fully available for testing - to simply be unfinished and/or temporary.

Transmog Set Feedback
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Well met! The upcoming PTR build that will be deployed this week will contain an almost-data-complete version of the Transmog Sets feature. We're still ironing out a good number of bugs (mostly relating to which items are displayed in any particular set), but by and large we feel like it's feature complete for 7.2. We're not going to add any more sets right now but we can always add more in the future.

There is some time to do small modifications based on feedback, so we'd like to hear what you think about it in this thread! Log on to the PTR and visit the Sets tab in the upper left of the Appearances tab (Shift+P). You will see many sets for your class that you can collect! All of this data is based on what is in your transmog library, and the usual rules about what you can and can't collect apply here too. We also added some achievements and a title!

Any bugs (especially those related to specific sets) should be reported in the bug report forum, but thoughts and feelings should be posted here.

Any updates on missing set pieces from previous raids (e.g. Firelands plate waists, ICC Death Knight boots/waists, etc?)
We are adding them for PVP sets, but only because 1) the total number missing is much smaller than PVE, 2) the item names are consistent and predictable, and 3) the rest of the items are all on vendors already, and we're using the new items to fill out ensembles.

We are not adding any items for PVE sets at this time. The scope of items that we need to add is far too large for us to take on in the time we have allotted to finish 7.2 -- it is much more than a full raid tier's worth of items on its own. This has been a great chance to thoroughly audit what is missing from the game, and we'll be adding these items in small chunks in future content releases to complete various sets.

Feedback - 7.2 Mythic Keystone Dungeons
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Hi all,

As mentioned in this week's PTR Development Notes, there are several changes to Mythic Keystone Dungeons now available for testing. We'd love to see any feedback you can give us regarding these changes, including the new dungeons, new and updated affixes, Artifact Power redistribution, and anything else you encounter that you feel is worth sharing.

Note: There is currently a known issue with Upper Karazhan Keystones which is causing you to start the run in the wrong location. We'll get that fixed in an upcoming build, but for now, we're going to hotfix the door that requires Moroes' Keys to be open by default, so you can progress through the dungeon that way.


SNF Ends Progression Raiding
SNF is also calling it quits with progression raiding.

by Published on 2017-02-14 08:39 PM

Blizzard Confirms Changes to Primal Ancients Design

Small-Time Buccaneer & Spirit Claws Are Being Nerfed, Ranked Changes Incoming

Earn a Primal Flamesaber Mount - For Azeroth!
The Heroes of the Storm mount promotion for Primal Flamesaber is here!

Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Gather your friends together and play any Warcraft Hero in Heroes of the Storm as a team and you can earn the new Primal Flamesaber Mount in World of Warcraft.

Beginning February 14 through March 13, a new quest called For Azeroth! will be available in Heroes of the Storm. Play 15 Heroes of the Storm matches with a friend from your® friends list, and you’ll be burning a new trail through Azeroth in style.

When: February 14 – March 13, 2017
Where: Play Heroes of the Storm Free
What: Play 15 matches of Heroes of the Storm using a Warcraft Hero while teamed up with a friend from your friends list.

Don’t have a Warcraft hero in Heroes of the Storm already? Don’t worry—each week a new set of heroes will become available to play for free. See the hero rotation schedule and begin planning your path to victory within the Nexus!

World Boss - Withered J'im
DEADLY: Withered J'im is up again this week, rewarding players with Artifact Power and a chance at item level 860 loot.

Bonus Event - Cataclysm Timewalking
Cataclysm Timewalking is back this week.

PTR Build Deploy 2/14/2017
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Greetings all,

PTR realms have begun to spin down in order to deploy a new 7.2.0 build this afternoon. No ETA for today's push but I'll ping this thread if things look like they're going to take longer than usual (~4-6 hours).

I'll leave this thread open for discussion so long as conversations remain civil and adhere to forum guidelines.

Thanks everyone!

Midwinter Ends Progression Raiding
Midwinter is also calling it quits with progression raiding.

by Published on 2017-02-14 06:54 AM

For Honor Launches Today! Check out the Wiki on Gamepedia

Hearthstone Valentine's Day Cards

Patch 7.2 - Death Knight Spell Animations
Death Knights also get a few new animations in Patch 7.2.

Patch 7.1.5 Hotfixes - February 13
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Player versus Player

  • (Hotfix in testing) Corrupted Essence drop rates have been increased for "Essence of Power".

From Scratch Switches to Casual Raiding
From Scratch managed to get world 4th in the recent race, but are dropping to more casual raiding for Tomb of Sargeras.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
PvP Feedback
To give some more context on the comment I made earlier about Rogue/Mage: we think it's fine if RMx comps work well. We don't think it's fine if RMx comps are the only ones that work well. To put it another way: we wouldn't want to nerf Rogue/Mage to the point that no one wants to play it any more, but we wouldn't want to let it be grossly overpowered, either.

I don't have any specific changes to share at this time but wanted to let you all know that we're actively discussing it, and that the feedback we've gotten through this thread (and other areas as well) has been very helpful in isolating exactly what your concerns are. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Class Balance and Player Perception
It really sucks that Blizzard left feral terrible for aoe, and weak overall, and hence bad for mythics for so long. It both makes for regular unpleasant interactions based entirely on preconceived notions rather than performance. It also makes it really hard to get into groups for challenging content as a feral.
I mean sure, but I find it's best to distance yourself from those folks if you have issue with it.

You're a part of this community, too. You have you say in these things as much as they do. Show them what you're worth and make them talk.

If it's a recurring problem, find a casual group of friends or guild to play with. That will help your experience a ton.

I expect this kind of response form a small minority of ignorant players but not from a blue.

The point is that its not about what you can do ... its about spec's being poor enough for long enough that a reputation precludes opportunities for performance ... and just playing with good friends isn't a solution and you should know it. SO 90% of the community can just queue up for content with strangers, but because your spec sucks you can only play with close friends?

For a lark I just checked the 90th % for my ilvl for normal nighthold - feral is dead last.

I can do what I can as an individual to competently play, and flask, and food buff, and pot, but its a small ripple in the ocean when Bliz doesn't bother to properly balance things.

I understand what you're trying to say... but then the top and bottom of the log you are showing me are ~10 points apart. That seems rather normal, and not much of a swing to really try to claim that those players deserve to be sidelined or kicked (especially when talking about the 90th percentile).

I get that balance will always be a concern (and we're still working on it!), and, yes, there will always be a class in "last", but a lot of the response to these things are community constructions around players treating other players as if nothing but DPS meters and "flavor of the month" specs matter. It's our job as members of the community to correct that kind of attitude when we see it, as it seems we generally agree it's not constructive.

If OP finds a group of people who don't focus on the minutia (ie., non-hardcore/elite/etc players), he'll have an easier time avoiding "insults" over his spec choice, and that's what he seems to want.

Is your argument to underpreforming specs seriously "join a casual guild" since no top guild would want one? lol
Nope! My argument is that the community has poorly built, ingrained expectations based on perceptions of class balance that should be reformed.

Joining a casual guild is an easy one-off solution, I guess. The bigger solution is us continuing work on class balance while engaging in conversations like these.

Edit: For clarification, it's fine for high expectations to exist for harder content, just as it is for expectations to exist that content should be able to be cleared with any spec/class in tow. I just disagree that the scrutiny placed on folks who aim to be more casual or just going about their day is well-placed.

Joining a casual guild is an easy one-off solution, I guess. The bigger solution is us continuing work on class balance while engaging in conversations like these.
I'm not trying to hardball or anything, but the truth is there's zero reason to bring a feral druid or an unholy dk right now.

Sure people can have fun and play the spec they want, but the reality is when unholy is literally behind frost by 150k, no one in their right mind would recruit an unholy dk when frost is just preforming so much better.

As for Feral, the game has 4 classes, 7 specs that all wear leather. Feral Druid brings nothing extra to the table. Windwalker brings raid wide move speed aura. Rogues and Demon Hunters bring huge damage, Boomkins bring versatility of being a strong cleave ranged with decent single target. Feral has no single target and low AoE and no utility worth mentioning.[/i]Like I said, and it was a bit vague there, but I agree insofar that balance isn't necessarily where it needs to be - and again, because these things run off numbers, there /will/ always be a "bottom" of the barrel. In that note, if you are running an operation based off that alone, then sure - but the vast, vast majority of our playerbase would never be in a situation where that is warranted, and is instead a community machination.

I personally always thought the better solution was diversification, with classes bringing more than just DPS to the table, and their DPS adjusted because of that. But I'm not a class designer.

Like . . . you guys can't change human nature. Some of your responses Ornyx are asking for the entire community to up and change their behavior in a pretty significant way.

It's one thing to work towards less toxic behavior in terms of aggression/name calling and such, but expecting people to fundamentally change ingrained human behavior is kind of a bit much don't you think?

Also, just to point out, 10% difference between top and bottom isn't bad per se, but when you're measuring dps by the hundreds of thousands that 10% is pretty alarming when you see it in game.

And not to put too fine a point on it, but you (blizzard) are the ones who design the content. If you eliminated any and all dps checks, then you would see the playerbase soften their attitudes. You guys are the ones putting stuff like Krosus, Tichondrius, enrage timers, immediate threat adds, etc in the game. As long as these exist, people will default to "only top performing specs are good" mentality.
I don't really think that's true. The behavior here is very much learned, and didn't exist before folks were staring at damage meters and 'gear score' to try to gain leverage over others. It's a bit much to ask that we divulge from that entire path, as its very much a part of WoW these days, but I don't think its much to understand that low DPS may not be the players fault, and that they don't necessarily deserve the blame or treatment they may get.

But yes, we (Blizzard) as designers also have an obligation and a hand in on the bargain here. Again, feedback is being sent along relative to this. Most of the watched discussion on balance topics now it happening on the Class Development forum so I suggest chiming in there if you get a chance. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Fan Art - Stormwind in Planet Coaster
Steeldragon has managed to recreate Stormwind in Planet Coaster. You can find the map here and some screenshots here.

by Published on 2017-02-13 06:42 AM

Top 5 Witch Doctor Builds for Season 9

Hearthstone Championship Tour: Europe Winter Playoffs - Results, Decklists

Patch 7.2 - Assault on Broken Shore
Khadgar will have a new quest for you once Patch 7.2 is live, sending you to the Broken Shore to fight the new Legion presence. This quest sends you into the Assault on Broken Shore scenario, where you head down to the Broken Shore, fighting your way through the Legion presence on the beach, island, and up to their ships.

Familiar faces such as Velen and Illidan will fight alongside you. Completing the scenario unlocks the outdoor Broken Shore area and rewards an item level 855 helm and item level 860 Order Hall Armor Set upgrade item.

Exorsus Nighthold Interview
Method has a nice interview with Exorsus about the recent race and more!

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
We're planning to make the Vicious and Prestigious mounts account-wide! Hoping for 7.2, but it might have to wait a bit longer. (WarcraftDevs)

Can you guys make all of these engineering mats crafting reagents so they'll go in the reagent bank?
This should be fixed in Patch 7.2. Thanks! (WarcraftDevs)

Ghostcrawler - Reaction to Players Unsubscribing
Ghostcrawler still occasionally talks about WoW. Remember that he no longer works for or speaks for Blizzard.
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
Unsubbing is often seen as the only ‘real’ way by players to express their displeasure in a way that affects the devs. However, one thing I’ve never known is how devs themselves react to this. Do you double down? Scrap plans? Abandon the game?
There are a couple of different ways to answer this.

Developers do care if you stop playing their game and they want to know why. However, for games like WoW and LoL, the answers are almost always “I have less time to play now (job/school/family” and “My friends don’t play anymore.” (I’m basing that on having seen a lot of data - it’s not super open to debate.)

Dropping a game because of a specific design change (despite what you might read on forums / Reddit) is actually pretty rare. I know it happens, but if you’re stack ranking the reasons why people quit, those specific responses end up being so far down the list that it is hard for a development team to take actionable feedback. It’s really rare you see “Wow, that change we made cost us 10,000 players. Let’s revert it!” So overall, I would not advocate boycotting a game as a way to make a statement, especially if deep down you still love the game. You’re just not likely to drive change as a result.

(As an aside, the best way to drive change is still to try and clearly articulate your concerns in some public forum and hope that the developers take it seriously. I have talked to plenty of players to know how frustrating that answer might be, because at the end of the day, there just isn’t some kind of magic key that you can use to 100% guarantee that you will unlock that lock. Nevertheless, it’s still the best hope you have.)

Now, there are long term trends in the lifespan of a game. At the end of the day, I have really only worked on three games (Age of Empires, World of Warcraft, and League of Legends). All three are games that have lasted for many years, but there are macro trends of engagement, meaning sometimes you’re gaining players and sometimes you’re losing players over the course of a few months or a few years.

And it’s interesting. When you see a lot of players leave over the course of say half a year, it usually spurs two diametrically opposed views on the development team. You will get one faction of “Players are getting bored - we must be bold and innovate!” You get another faction of “We are changing the game so much that we’re losing our soul! We need to get back to basics!”

Like with so many things, it’s rarely so cut and dried that you must pick one of those directions over the other. Often the answer ends up being that you need to innovate in one direction, while still making sure the game is easy to return to, and perhaps even getting back to something familiar or even nostalgic in yet other designs.

My perception has been that the players and developers in the “We’ve changed too much!” camp tend to be those who are less engaged with the game than they once were. Losing track of change usually happens to players who once played every day and are now playing once a week or once a month. They remember being super engaged with the game and knowing everything that was going on, and so the dissonance of that no longer being the case for them is really striking, perhaps even alienating. On the other hand, players who are still really engaged are the ones most likely to need something fresh and new so that they don’t run out of stuff to do.

Overall as a developer, I tend to advocate being bold and innovating. This depends a lot on your business model. Some games really want to create new players as a fast as they can because they can’t hold on to current players for very long. (That’s not a holistic criticism - it’s just a different model.) But a game like League tends to be more reliant on keeping current players than it is on attracting new ones. (Example: if you’re a young man in Korea, chances are you either play LoL or have decided it’s not for you. There probably isn’t a young man in Korea who has just heard of this new LoL thing and wants to try it out.) For League, we weigh most of our decisions on resonance with active players. Yes, it is entirely possible to change so much that you drive players away, but we think the risk of stagnation is greater. So for League, the answer is usually double down. YMMV. (Source)

Mythic +25 Vault of the Wardens
A group recently managed to clear +25 Vault of the Wardens in time!

UnderWatched - Ep 5 Valentine's Day Special
Another episode of UnderWatched has been released.

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