World of Warcraft News and Raiding Strategies RSS Feed

by Published on 2013-05-26 10:44 PM

The Murlocket is Back, ZeroNine's Dashing Strike Monk Build, Imperius Fan Art, Curse's Weekly Roundup

A Look at the Warrior vs Paladin Duel

Patch 5.3 Dev Interview
Today we are taking a look at an interview over on Icy Veins with the WoW dev team.

Death Knight
  • Blood has some raid utility with Raise Ally, Death Grip, Blood Worms, and Anti-Magic Zone (which will be buffed in 5.4). Other than the AMZ change, there aren't any plans for improving their raid utility at this time.
  • They are the second most popular tanks, after Prot Paladins.

  • Resto Druids got some small buffs in Patch 5.3, but HoTs were a healing cushion in the past, and they have now been replaced somewhat by absorbs. Patch 5.3 also nerfed Discipline Priests and Holy Paladins, but absorbs are still likely too potent.
  • Patch 5.4 will emphasize HoT spells even more, especially for AoE healing in raids.

  • Silencing Shot feels mandatory for Hunters, but giving it to all hunters would just let them choose another CC talent from that tier.
  • Aspect of the Iron Hawk is the strongest talent in that tier, but a passive talent. This goes against the idea that passive talents should be slightly worse than active talents, because active talents require attention and skill to use.
  • Blink Strikes may also be too good compared to other talents in that tier, as it is also a passive talent.
  • Hunters bring somewhat less raid utility compared to other classes, but they have good representation in raiding and are universal buffers.

  • Mages bring somewhat less raid utility compared to other classes, but they have good representation in raiding and many tools to escape fatal damage.
  • The Level 90 talent tier for Mages is too heavily tied to mana management overall, but the solution may be too large of a change for Patch 5.4.

  • Tanks are reluctant to use Avert Harm because it can result in death, but Brewmaster already has a lot of raid utility so it may just be removed in the future.
  • In the future, Windwalker may see healing become less of a personal DPS loss or Tigereye Brew benefit healing.

  • There are no plans to nerf Solace and Insanity, but a buff for the other two talents in that tier is possible.

  • We are unlikely to see a set bonus that lowers the GCD often, but this tier it was an experiment. There were server lag problems during this tier that made it hard to tell how well it worked this time.

  • Enhancement could see shorter ramp up times for AoE damage in the future.
  • The Patch 5.4 tier set bonus will increase both single target and AoE damage.
  • Resto is a little less attractive in 10 player raids due to weaker healing when players are not grouped up or movement is required. Totemic Restoration may be replaced in Patch 5.4, which could provide an opportunity to address range issues.
  • One Elemental change being considered is making Flame Shock tick crits cause Lava Surge instead of just a chance on a tick.

  • Warlocks do great damage in most situations, mitigate a lot of damage, and provide a lot of utility, making them almost too attractive in raids. Damage mitigation may be the thing to be nerfed, but we will know more when Patch 5.4 hits the PTR.

Class Balance
  • Patch 5.4 will make another pass of talents that are unappealing or mandatory to move back towards having a choice on each tier.
  • Melee and ranged play styles were balanced fairly well this tier, with melee being good on some fights and ranged being good on others.
  • Melee used to be far better than ranged at doing damage while moving, but that has changed over time. Rather then going back to making ranged stand still while doing damage, the devs are looking at giving melee another niche that they can be good at.
  • There aren't any classes that are excluded from Heroic raiding due to a lack of utility. Underrepresented specs usually have another spec that plays similarly that is doing fine.
  • Healer representation is much better in 25 player raids compared to 10 player raids.

Tri Spec
  • When testing tri spec during the 5.3 PTR, the developers realized that it was mostly useful to avoid having to set up action bars again after changing specs.
  • Before adding tri spec, the developers want to be absolutely sure the game needs it, as it is very difficult to go back on that kind of decision. Currently the better solution is adding a system for saving action bars and having players visit their class trainer to change to a third spec.
  • If the Mists of Pandaria talent system had been in place before dual spec, it is possible that dual spec would have not been added. Instead, a system for remembering action bar setups may have done the job.
  • Adding a fourth spec would be very expensive in terms of the amount of learning that players would have to do. Both learning an entirely new spec for their class, as well as learning about every other classes new spec. It would also involve adding new spells, set bonuses, and a lot of changes to these new spells as they were iterated on to be tweaked just right.

Brawler's Guild
  • The Brawler's Guild was about as popular as expected, considering invites are throttled and that there is no power gain to be had from participating.
  • Players that aren't able to defeat all of the bosses can keep coming back as their gear improves to progress further.

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Character / Items
Have you got any ideas on return to fixed ICD stuff or at least adding some active trinkets back? More degrees of freedom.
We kind of prefer RPPM overall. Actives tend to just get macro'd into CDs. ICDs end up feeling passive esp. with low ICDs. (Source)
RPPMs on the other hand can sometimes give you many procs in a row, which is exciting and lets smart players capitalize on them. (Source)

Are heirlooms no longer being supported for purchase through Argent Tournament? I see updates for JP, HP, and DMF but not AT.
We thought it was weird to get high level heirlooms from lower level content that you can do at lower level. (Source)

any plans on bringing points back to points back to Talents for leveling? Maybe taking two talents per tier by points?
We'd like some tangible reward for gaining a level, but it can't be 90 new spells to clutter your action bar. (Source)

As a warrior, I really miss ArP(armor penetration). Any chance we will ever see it back?
Doubtful. Can you explain why you found it fun other than just RAWR DAMAGE? (Source)
ArP scaled in an interesting way with most of your abilities. The current system is boring and RAWR damage.
Not sure how it was that interesting. Just got better the more you had. (Source)

Horrible response GC. So punish the people who have figured out what to do with your game for 8+ years?
If you have 1 character and I have 5, then either you won't have enough to do or I will have too much. (Source)
Unless we make 1 and 5 characters require the same time investment, which means when you're done with 1 you have little to do. (Source)
Instead we try to make 2-5 take less time than the first, but still more time than if you only had 1 character. (Source)

Forget trispec, just make ActionBarSaver like function to default UI. I'd be more willing to pvp if I could reconfig for it
We think there is a lot of sense in something like this. (Source)

Here is an interesting read from Korea about how separate lockouts affected them
We have seen this story of course, but I think you are overestimating the role separate lockouts had to play. (Source)
The dual lock out was attempting to support existing Asian play styles, not drive them. (Source)

Our 10M guild is one of these having major issues. Down Jinrohk easy. Been on Horridon for at least 8 wks.
We think in retrospect that Horridon had a lot going on for a second boss. We'd prefer a smoother difficulty curve. (Source)
Trekkie said it last night in Legendary. Normals are too difficult (when an entire heroic diff level exists).
We don't agree. If N is too easy, those guilds plow through N and then get stuck on the much harder H bosses. (Source)
The key, which is hard, is that everyone should always have a new boss to look forward to. (Source)

easy does not equal compelling, and will not guarantee more people doing at. Especially not for long.
Totally. *Progression* is fun. Too hard or finished too quickly both yield a lack of progression. (Source)

The theme of this xpac for 10N is roadblocks without detours. which cannot happen with faster supply of content.
We felt the first tier was fine in 10 overall. Dogs, Elegon and Garalon required some hotfixes. ToT was a little too hard on 10. (Source)
It's tough because our stated goal is to make 10 and 25 equal difficulty since they provide same ilevel. (Source)
But the majority of 25 guilds are heroic guilds. That means 25s overall tend to be more skilled than 10s. (Source)
So even if the difficulty is the same, 10s end up feeling harder to their actual audiences. (Source)
Yet nerfing 10s adds to the pressure of having 25s just give up and run 10s since effort per reward is easier. (Source)
Tough problem to solve, which is why I sometimes opine if the ICC model of lower ilevel for 10s worked better. (Source)

I figure internal studies corroborate this -- and not unlike the government of California, you're caving to unfounded whining.
Not sure I'm following you. I think 25s are more fun and probably better for the game. But. (Source)
So many players play 10 that we risk huge backlash by forcing them to change. (Source)
We'll risk backlash when we think it's the right call for the game. Not sure that changing the 10 v 25 model is a clear win. (Source)

Have you noticed if the intro of the Thunderforge system has had an impact on 25s raiding at all? (increase/decrease/no diff)
Hard to say. 25s are rarely created so it's more a question of how many didn't break up that might have. (Source)
~ I know the higher drop in 25s was a bonus for them, but not sure it was intended to increase the numbers.
You're right. The bonus was more to send a signal to 25s that we still value them and aren't trying to phase them out. (Source)

So Ion admitted 10N is too hard in MoP - I feel like you don't need to wait to solve this problem...
He mentioned some fights in ToT were too hard on 10. They have been fixed for the most part. (Source)
Separately, he speculated that there is an audience that might use LFR level difficulty without random matchmaking. (Source)

Have you considered using stuns/silences/disarms to punish failures instead of damage? Less pressure to healers more to DPS.
We do that some; it just gets a little gimmicky if overused. At some point, dragon fire should just burn you. (Source)

Issue: "player cannot be kicked for another 15mins" is unhelpful with afkers in 5mans that only take ~15 minutes to complete.
You can then also kick a true noob or a guy in blue gear or a spec you don't like. (Source)
SWTOR got random groups correct. It is server based. Server based leads to accountability.
Realm based groups would have a very long queue time, especially on off-peak hours. How long are you willing to wait? (Source)

if you can kick and AFK or jerk whenever you want there's a real danger people might stop afking/being a jerk
Would love to see that. But it would also be easy to kick someone who made a talent selection you thought was noobish. (Source)

Maybe we should go back to creating our own groups and making friends, and then we can decide who we play with?
I've always played with large, active guilds and still had to wait for hours to get enough people to run a dungeon. (Source)
I can only imagine the situation is worse for smaller guilds or folks between guilds. (Source)
I get that the group might be more less likely to fall apart once formed, but is that worth the cost overall? Is it fun? (Source)

Do you also feel LFR/ LFD has caused a disconnect betwwen players to just chat creating relationships that transcend content?
We'd like to improve this and have some cool ideas. Stay tuned. (Source)
I hope its an additional raid difficulty for friend and family guilds. And not the removal of lfr/lfd.
We wouldn't remove LFD/R. When I ask about it, I'm trying to get a sense for what those players are really looking for. (Source)
Some want to force socialization. Others want to preserve the prestige of the harder content. (Source)
Both are noble goals, but we think kicking so many players out of raiding would have graver consequences. (Source)

LFR Healer queue. Healer carries dps into instance, then quits: group never gets healers, eternal Lei Shen queue loop.
If you group with a tank or healer who quits (just to get you a fast queue) you get dropped as well. #whyyoucan'thavenicethings (Source)

Why did u opt to have the ILvl difference between LFR and normal 20 for this tier of content instead of 13 like previously???
Couple reasons. Helps LFR feel less important to N raiders. Also keeps some prestige for N gear. (Source)
So pandering to the few again? is this not part of the issue with making select few feel more important
If challenging content doesn't feel rewarding, the risk is players focus on easier content and then get bored. (Source)

Have you guys considered a 10m LFR?
Our concern is that the smaller the raid, the higher the likelihood of getting a weak link. (Source)

The foundation of WoW has become more and more about loot above all else. Social interaction? LFR/low pop realms=no.
Agree that low pop realms are a problem. Disagree about LFR. While no doubt some players transitioned from friends to LFR... (Source)
Overall, those players just didn't participate before. They didn't have the social groups capable of raiding. (Source)

What are your feeling of the fact that LFR has become end game for many players?
Before LFR, getting max level was the end game for many players, and one can only level so many alts. (Source)

LFR means that Normal mode raids provide no unique content. Weakens incentive to gear up or socialize with guilds. A problem?
Potentially. Many players seem to have the attitude that LFR steals players from normal. But. (Source)
Seen/talked to many skilled players that are in my shoes, all were grateful for LFR, wouldn't get to see the content otherwise
Is it the difficulty or having a group that is the barrier? Some players are arguing it's just the former that's an issue. (Source)

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Dark Legacy Comics #391 - Gone Fishin'
DLC #391 has been released!

by Published on 2013-05-25 10:43 AM

What Should an Endless Dungeon Have?, Blue Posts, SakuraFlame and Kotori Cosplay, ErlendOlsen's Barb Guide to Blowing Stuff Up

New Site Updates, Dream Cards, Info on Mission Cards and the Tutorial, Top 10 New Ability Cards

Patch 5.3 - One Death Knight Per Realm Restriction Removed
Ghostcrawler let us know that you can now make multiple Death Knights per realm instead of having to resort to server transfers to get them there.

Patch 5.4 Vengeance Change
Ghostcrawler made a few more comments on the proposed Vengeance change.
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
My original Vengeance tweet wasn't intended as a 5.4 announcement. I was trying to address concerns about the current iteration of Vengeance. Current Vengeance concerns include excessive tank DPS and motivation to do things like solo tank a two-tank boss. (Source)

Isn't that caused by a lack of severe tank swap forcing mechanics? Also agree tank dps too high, other than Warr
Still, a tank should never want to take more damage. He or she should want to avoid it. (Source)

What's considered "excessive"? Equal or higher to a damage dealer? 80%? 50%?
I hesitate to mention numbers because they will get dragged out every time it's not the case, but something like 50-80% is good. (Source)

Solo tanking is honestly the only valid concern, did you not think we were going to try to push our number to the limit?
I included the word "like" indicating that solo tanking was not in fact the only concern. Tanks should never want to increase the damage they take. (Source)
Make Vengeance scale with mitigation instead then. Rewarding tanks for damage taken makes no sense.
The benefit of damage taken is it also scales with content. Lei Shen hits harder than Hogger. (Source)

If vengeance is reaching these levels, why make it cap at health, did you think we weren't going to try to max that out too?
Health scales with gear. (Source)

There's just no way a tank should ever be out damaging a proper dps that is playing well.
In general, yes. The problem comes in say an add fight when the tank has 100% up time and DPS do not. (Source)

Now you think tank DPS is excessive and it wasn't the case 5-6 months ago. Anything in particular changed your mind?
The trend of trying to increase damage taken to increase damage done is a more recent one. (Source)

The proposed vengeance change will stop one tanking, but it won't fix tank dmg overall. even in 25H you rarely hit 50% hp AP.
Yeah, like I said, those numbers might not be right ones or even the right solution. (Source)
In retrospect I should have tweeted the problems we were trying to solve (as I did today) and not a solution in a vacuum. (Source)

What made you go with the Vengeance model instead of replicating the Death Strike model for other tanks? Curious.
The timing of Death Strike (5 sec vs. 20) is really important, which has advantages and disadvantages. (Source)

Make fire effects not trigger vengance and instantly solve everything
I've addressed this on twitter, and no it does not solve everything. Neither does nerfing paladin debuff removal. Any time a tank can increase both DPS and survivability by taking more damage, it's going to be a problem. (Source)

If you like "tank damage to be relevant", then why are the top DPS tanking classes so far from the bottom ones?
Some tank classes have to focus more on doing damage (which doesn't mean sacrificing tanking). Others get it naturally. (Source)

Survival->damage tradeoff has been around for ages, this has just made it really extreme. I like the change tho.
Yeah, survival -> damage done is fine. The problem now is damage taken -> survival + damage done. (Source)

Patch 5.3 Hotfixes - May 23
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

  • Lighting the Way: Minimum level to start the quest has been reduced to level 89.
  • That's a Big Bug: Minimum level to start the quest has been reduced to level 89.

  • Summonable bosses on the Isle of the Thunder King will drop their unique weapons more frequently.

Raids, Dungeons, and Scenarios
  • Karazhan
    • Chess Event: Medivh's buff to damage on chess pieces has been reduced to 100%, down from 200%.
    • Chess Event: Damage from Medivh's fire has been reduced to 4k, down from 10k.

  • Big Zokk Torquewrench should once again be selling their wares to characters that have attained the rank of Legionnaire (Horde), Knight-Captain (Alliance), or above.

Battlegrounds and Arenas
  • Deepwind Gorge has been added back to the map rotation for Rated Battlegrounds.

Pet Battles

  • Quest rewards from Path of the Last Emperor should now be eligible to be upgraded for Valor Points.
  • Fixed an issue where socket bonuses for a number of helmets were incorrectly giving a bonus to Resilience instead of PvP Power.

Battlefield: Barrens
  • Adjusted the pathing for southbound caravans being escorted by players. Those caravans should now stop before crossing into Southern Barrens.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
PvP Power
PvP Power is important because it allows us to make PvP gear better than PvE gear for PvP purposes.

PvP Power doesn’t count towards the ilvl budget, so for example, any Tyrannical piece with PvP Power in it should have around the same amount of stats of an equivalent PvE item converted to 496, PvP Power is a bonus stat that will make that Tyrannical piece have the edge over any PvE item.

It’s ok if players choose not to use PvP Power on gems as that means that we’ve managed to reduce the gap between PvE and PvP gear to a good level. If PvP power gems were a lot better than gems with PvE stats then that would make PvE players feel like they should keep switching all the gems on their gear every time they would enter into any instanced PvP combat situation.

I’m hoping to see many more players jump into Arena after 5.3, this is actually a good thing, even for the most Hardcore PvP players, more teams usually means more stability and by mixing the PvE and PvP population, it will probably become a bit easier to reach higher ratings as well.

There are many players that are skilled in both PvP and PvE but only have time to dedicate themselves to fully equip their characters into one of these roles, this patch means that such players will be able to enjoy much more content without feeling any huge competitive unfairness.

What you said is entirely understandable, except for one thing. Could you explain the purpose of PvP power gems? Because they only seem as a sub-par choice if pvp power is weaker then either pve stat on the whole spectrum, especially considering secondary stat gems are doubled in amount on gems as opposed to primary stat or pvp power. I am wondering what is the point for a sub-par stat to actually exist.
The gems were introduced when PvP Power and Resilience were much more valuable, we'll see what will happen to them, the verdict is still out there if they are or aren't useful in any way, and for any spec/class, players are still figuring out 5.3 stat weights for every combination.

If they really end up having no use other than to cause confusion to players, I’m sure devs will do something about it. For now I believe they’re still here mainly because they were here before, I doubt that they would have been added now if they didn’t exist before 5.3, but I could be wrong. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Druids Shifting and Roots
Druids used to be able to shift out of roots for a very long time, when we changed it during Cataclysm there was a lot of negative feedback about it since it felt like we were removing a druid’s core ability. Shifting out of roots was already seen as part of a druid’s identity, part of what makes them distinctive.

At that time druids just seemed to have way too much mobility as they were able to kite every single class to a point where no one would go for the druid in higher ratings, they would just be left for CC and/or maybe for a quick switch.

But that was back then, classes had fewer and less powerful abilities, in MoP devs decided to bring back root shifting because after taking into account all of the changes that the expansion brought to every other class, it seemed like the added mobility wouldn’t be overpowered anymore, also this ability used to be part of the druid class for such a long time that it felt really nice to be able to return it to them.

Having said that, stuff is being changed all the time, we’re focused on providing a balanced PvP endgame experience, but in a game of this scope, we have to accept that tuning is probably a never-ending process, and your feedback is key to make this work.

I have to admit that I also have issues peeling ferals in Arena, even on my mage. I’m just not sure if it’s my lack of skill, if they counter my classes, or are actually op.

Anyway I’ll let devs know about your feedback. If this proves to be a real issue, rest assured that there are plenty of ways to address it; for example, we could add a CD or make it break snares but not roots, but note that this will never be done lightly, we don’t want to keep adding and removing such core abilities, as that can quickly become frustrating for those who are playing the respective class, we try our best not to make big unexpected changes in the middle of an expansion but sometimes we have to do it. Balance is very important.(Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
do you, collectively, want players to be dependent on other players' professions?
Don't have a strong feeling on that. We don't want players to feel they MUST have an army of alts to support all profs. (Source)

I guess what I mean is Crafting professions should be useful, not an afterthought for the average player
It has been a hard line to walk making them fun without forcing everyone to swap to whatever makes the best stuff at the time. (Source)

Any plans on other professions given a "catch-up" in MoP like BSmithing, Herbing, and Mining?
Yes. It might not be soon. (Source)

that's what I mean. Glyphs used to be a great money maker until you only had to buy them once.
We have to avoid making life annoying for every players just to guarantee some professions are profitable. (Source)

do you have any plans for a 3rd profession slot?
Probably not the way you're thinking. #crypticGCtweets (Source)

In future: starter-weapons could prob have lower mat cost and the end weapon could be higher. More commensurate with gains.
I think that's reasonable feedback. Just trying to avoid specific crafting skills feeling mandatory. (Source)

Any chance the TBC weapons will have a mat reduction? They're not profitable *and* take a month to make.
We think the problem was you couldn't start some of them until the forge opened. (Source)

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

by Published on 2013-05-24 10:21 AM

Diablo III’s One-Year Anniversary Infographic

HearthPwn - Hearthstone Database, Tools, and News

Patch 5.3 Dev Interview
Today we are taking a look at an interview on ArenaJunkies with Ghostcrawler and Holinka.

  • Prior to Patch 5.3, players would often complain about how quickly they died in PvP if they didn't have PvP gear.
  • The idea behind adding PvP Power was to give PvP gear an extra stat that didn't count towards its item level, not making it the only good stat in PvP. The changes made in Patch 5.3 make other stats a good choice as well when gemming your gear.
  • Patch 5.3 also addresses concerns that PvE trinkets would be BiS for PvP by increasing duration of procs and reducing the effect, making them less powerful for bursting players down. Trinkets above item level 496 are also scaled down in Battlegrounds, Rated Battlegrounds, and Arenas, along with your other gear.
  • More cosmetic rewards are coming in the upcoming patches and next expansion, as well as the potential for some rewards that are not just cosmetic.
  • Now that you can't upgrade PvP gear anymore, the developers will try to find something else for players to spend excess Conquest Points on.
  • Spells doing different amounts of damage in PvP and PvE is a rare thing and only used in cases where there will be a large difference because it is a lot to keep track of for less hardcore players that don't keep up with all of the changes.
  • Making a Warlocks gateway able to be killed was done to make sure there was a way to counter it, and make matches less binary. If a Warlock got a gateway then the match played differently than if the Warlock was unable to make one initially.
  • Patch 5.2 tried to give Rogues more survivability and more attractive talents, such as Shuriken Toss, Mark for Death, and Cloak and Dagger. These were a little bit too much, and Patch 5.3 brought them more in line with other talents while keeping the survivability changes.
  • The changes to Hunter pet CC were caused by Hunters having a little bit too much CC, especially Beast Mastery Hunters.
  • Warriors were too good in the beginning of the season and saw some hotfixes to address the issue. However, these hotfixes weren't enough, so in Patch 5.2 some larger nerfs were made. These ended up being a little bit too strong.
  • The devs end up with burst being dominant because they don't want a match that goes on forever with no one able to kill anyone until the healers run out of mana. They often err on the side of too much burst, but try hard not to overcompensate.

Patch 5.3 Hotfixes - May 23
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

  • Elite versions of Quivering Filth should now have a chance to drop Half-Empty Food Container.

Pet Battles
  • Pet Abilities
    • Blackout Kick should now correctly have a 100% chance to hit.
    • Deep Freeze should now only stun 100% of the time when target is chilled.
    • Fury of 1,000 Fists should now only stun 100% of the time when target is blinded.
    • Surge of Light should now only stun 100% of the time when the weather is darkness.

Raids, Dungeons, and Scenarios
  • Throne of Thunder
    • Dark Animus
      • Anima Golems now generate more threat when attacking their current target.
    • Durumu the Forgotten
      • Crimson Fog and Azure Fog should now properly remain visible after being revealed by cones of light.

Battlegrounds and Arenas
  • Deepwind Gorge capture points will now properly use the faction you have been assigned to when capturing mines.


Battlefield: Barrens
  • Goblin Kor'kron Commanders' Throw Dynamite ability now deals 40% less damage.
  • Shaman Kor'kron Commanders' Crackling Fury will now only increase in damage by 50% each jump, down from 200%.
  • Warrior Kor'kron Commanders will now only cast Titanic Thunderclap when there are enemies within 10 yards.
  • Some Kor'kron Commander abilities will no longer target or affect pets and totems.
  • Fixed an issue where Overturned Caravans were despawning earlier than intended.

Brawler's Guild
  • Challenge Card quests can now be completed while in a raid. Note that credit for defeating a boss will not be shared amongst party or raid members.
  • Anthracite will now reset properly when a player dies or leaves the arena and can no longer be attacked by players spectating the fight.

Bug Fixes
  • Achievement: Waste Not, Want Not should now be properly awarded to players that satisfied all but the Cooldown Power-Up requirement.
  • Sound effects should no longer be cut out in areas with a large number of ambient sounds.
  • Fixed an issue where some sounds were not playing correctly during boss fights.
  • Fixed an issue where the raid warning sound was not playing correctly.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Valor Points Catch Up
That’s a reasonable and logical argument but I kind of agree with Máz here, in the sense that we can’t compare Conquest to Valor as if they were exactly in the same league, they’re quite different.

The conquest catch up lets you get some extra points in order to buy some initial Tyrannical pieces of gear in the middle of the season, the only other alternative would be to farm honor and get Malevolent or craft some blue gear.

In PvE, there are already plenty of other alternatives for “catching up” in terms of gear without having to waste any Valor Points, there are Heroic Scenarios, LFR, Challenge Modes, and even Arenas and RBGs… because PvP gear is actually decent to step into PvE since PvP stats like PvP Power are out of the ilvl budget.

Even though the ilvl of all of this gear will be lower than normal mode raiding gear or valor gear, they provide great upgrades at zero cost to those who’ve been away for some time, allowing them to quickly catch up with the current PvE content a bit faster.

But, like I said, I still find it a perfectly reasonable argument, and maybe devs can consider it for future updates, first let’s see how the PvP catch up works out for everyone and we’ll build upon and think about other possibilities from there.

I think this is more a question of how fast do we want PvE players to catch up with current content, and not if we want them to catch up at all, because there are already plenty of ways for them to do that. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Reputation / Questing
Or look at dailies. Blizz removed 25 daily limit, people burned out on it, doing ALL dailies every day.
Agreed that removing daily limit was a mistake. Not sure we made the right call with 10 vs. 25. (Source)
Why restrict people from running 100 dailies every day if they want to just because others don't want to?
Huge challenge for us. "Don't nanny me" vs. "Don't make me do all of this content." Very hard to solve. (Source)
But you're not 'making' anyone do anything. People who invest more time and effort get more rewards. Why is that a problem?
That's certainly one side of it. The other is players who feel like the game asks so much of them that they can't compete at all. (Source)

if you bring back limits on dailies, make them weekly limits, not daily limits, some of us like to grind out stuff in one day
I don't know that we need quest limits. Overall when we try to "save players from themselves" it can backfire. (Source)

so only one option that devs think is best > multiple options for players? You do realize that players can choose for themself
That's not what I said. I said if there are multiple ways to earn the same reward, players will take the most efficient. (Source)
We try to discourage that because it's not fun to do the same thing over and over. (Source)
And we try to discourage it by putting different rewards in different activities. (Source)
Then why the dailies? The essence of doing the same thing over and over.
The hope was that you would not do the same dailies over and over, but the reward system didn't reinforce that behavior. (Source)
E.g. you could have chosen GL one day and Klaxxi the next, but since GL unlocked other factions, it felt mandatory. (Source)
If your goal is valor or lesser charms, you honestly have a lot of options (as it should be). (Source)
"Which dailies will I do?" isn't options. It's dailies. No matter how appealing you try to make them. They're dailies.
Very few players cap valor and charms every single week. They still make progress over time. (Source)
Very dedicated and / or hardcore players might, but they are also the ones who want more and more stuff to do. (Source)
If you hate them that much, just don't do them. Yes, you might be a few ilevels behind your friends. Maybe it's worth it. (Source)
crap answer. Maybe Mr. Heroic raider doesn't need valor gear, but some of us lesser fools do.
But why do you *need* valor gear? And even if you do, you can still earn it even if you skip dailies completely. (Source)

With respect, by that logic, you shouldn't add new classes and races. They take time away from the older ones.
Some truth to that, but ultimately I think there is also a player expectation that we will add news ones from time to time. (Source)

Fan Art
Over on Reddit, ngk08 shared some nice panorama screenshots with a Photoshop filter applied.

by Published on 2013-05-23 08:09 PM

Patch 5.4 Vengeance Change, BG Healer Balancing Disabled, May 22 Hotfixes, Blue Posts

Reminder: Hearthstone is still under development and constantly changing, including card details. All of this is information is from an early game client and WILL change before release.

HearthPwn - Hearthstone Database, Tools, and News
As we get closer to the Hearthstone Beta and news happen more frequently, now is a good time to announce HearthPwn, our sister site for Hearthstone news! You will find much more frequent Hearthstone news updates there, along with the cards database, deck builder, and decks database.

You can participate in the discussion on the HearthPwn Forums or on our Hearthstone forum!

Card Database
Take a look at all of the previously unseen cards in the Card Database!

  • Every Card - Every Hearthstone card found in the game as of the current build is listed, except for the placeholder cards that we have hidden and two that will be revealed by Blizzard next week.
  • Many Views - There are three different ways to browse cards:
    • Visual - View both the picture and all the card information in text form. Gives all the information you could need about the card (including if it can be gold).
    • Images - View every card in picture form (Great for looking at all the art)
    • Listing - Simply lists the name, and basic stats. Great for quick browsing.
  • Filters - We have a filter for every class, type, and attribute there is. We also list the set names and more that you will only find on HearthPwn.
  • Artist Names - The database also has the name of the artist for each and every card.
  • Card Flavor Text - Many cards have flavor text, such as "Alexstrasza was enslaved by the orc Nekros Skullcrusher just before the Second War. When she was freed, she swallowed him whole. Yum!"
  • See Decks That Include Your Favorite Cards - Every card page has both a graph showing how many decks hold that card, along with links to every deck that has that card in it. Find a new fun card, and instantly find decks based off it!

Deck Builder
Build your deck using the current cards available in Hearthstone!

  • Every Card - Hearthpwn's deck builder is the only deck builder around with EVERY card that Hearthstone has!
  • Save, Share, and Vote - Once you have finished your deck, you can save it with a name and description. Players can now browse over decks on our deck database, vote on them, and even copy the deck over and work on their own version.
  • Easy to Share on Forums - HearthPwn makes it easy for you to share your deck on the HearthPwn forums. Simply copy the Deck BBcode and your deck will automatically be outputted for easy viewing.
  • More to Come - Keep in mind this is only the first version. There are many tweaks and additions in the works, such as sharing your decks on Facebook, info graphs, and more!

New and Updated Cards
You can see a full list of the new and updated cards on HearthPwn!

Foil / Gold Card List
Some cards will have a chance to have a gold border that improves the visual, but doesn't make the card more powerful.

Card Tooltips On Your Site
HearthPwn also supports card tooltips! Check out the Tooltips page for information on how to setup these tooltips on your site.

Hearthstone Wiki
The Hearthstone Wiki is also in the process of being updated with all of the new cards, so be sure to check it out later today!

by Published on 2013-05-23 04:59 AM

A Few Hours Left of the Anniversary Buff, Matching System for Public Games, Sword of Justice Trade Paperback, ChromeOnRust: How Magic Find Works

Patch 5.4 Vengeance Change
Ghostcrawler talked about a potential change to how Vengeance works in Patch 5.4 last week, as well as answering a few questions about it.

Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Please don't do this. I do not wish to be made back into a simple meatshield. Staying alive and doing good damage is fun.
Your damage will still be fine and higher than pre Vengeance. Tanks don't need to win meters IMO. (Source)

Who benefits from this change? dps who like topping metres?
Healers who don't have to contend with tanks sitting in fires? (Source)

If all that loot didn't get people running 25 mans why do you think vengeance will? I don't get it man honestly.
It's not intended as a 25 perk. The environments are different in terms of DPS and require different numbers. (Source)

I think it's in addition to the PvP nerf tanks are getting theyre working hard to balance PvP and it's PvE
It's not a PvP issue. It's some protection against tanks doing unusual or goofy things to increase their AP to unintended levels. (Source)

Why do you want to make tanking more difficult? I would think with few tanks and healers you would want to make it easier.
Do some quick calculations. Do your tanks hit those numbers regularly without doing things like solo tanking? (Source)
If that's your reasoning I guess I understand it. If your goal is to make solo tanking harder this will do it.
We do want to make solo tanking harder on fights intended for 2 tanks. Solo tanking is fun to a degree, but it shouldn't be the right answer to increase DPS or mitigation. (Source)
Just want to point out that this change would hurt 10m far more than 25m though, compounding factors involved. I really don't understand why you think the cap in 25m should be higher than 10m even with higher tank damage.
Tanks are a greater percent of damage done in 10s. 1 per 4 DPS rather than 1 per 7 or so in 25s. Which means tanks should care more about their damage in 10s than in 25s which is odd. And because tanks do get hit harder in 25s they need more Vengeance to translate to higher active mitigation. So we think the pitch is sound on those fronts. Where it runs into trouble is that tanks don't have the same health. When the cap is lower, high health tanks will just have higher Vengeance. Furthermore, mitigation not based on Vengeance, such as Death Strike, just become more powerful at the cap. These are problems we'd have to solve if we go through with it, but there should be lots of PTR testing for 5.4. (Source)

Seems like a 180 from what you preached awhile ago, awhen you were fine with it. Why the change in philosophy?
Tank DPS will still be quite high even with this change. Wait for some players to estimate numbers. (Source)

I can't understand, why tanks dps was affected by this feature, if you could have just buffed threat directly.
We like for tank damage to be relevant, and for active mitigation to scale. Vengeance provides all of that in addition to threat. Having huge threat modifiers on low damage abilities was also something tank complained about constantly. It may bug DPS players to get out DPSd by a tank, which is understandable, but that happened in dungeons way before Vengeance. Overall Vengeance still solves a lot more problems than it creates. (Source)

Perhaps the source of vengeance needs to be looked at. Im not sure the complexity but can ground aoe not give it
Yes. We are going to start flagging certain ground mechanics to not give Venegance. (Source)

Random Battleground Healer Balancing Disabled
It looks like the long queue times were being caused by the new balancing system.

Patch 5.3 Hotfixes - May 22
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
  • Players that die and release around the Seat of Knowledge area will now be provided with a Spectral Gryphon (Wisp for Night Elves) or a Spectral Wyvern; allowing them to fly back to their bodies.


Druid (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Talents
    • Force of Nature: Balance Treant should be more responsive while chain casting. The global cooldown on their version of Wrath has been reduced to 0.5 seconds, down from 1.5 seconds.
    • Force of Nature: Restoration Treant should no longer cause their target to Taunt enemies.

Priest (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • Shadow
    • Vampiric Embrace should now split healing amongst multiple allied targets by the proper amount.

Shaman (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • General
    • Healing Rain area-of-effect now should cap properly at 6 targets.
  • Talents

Warlock (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
  • General
    • Demonic Gateway now should correctly gain charges while the Warlock is mounted or on a passenger mount.
    • Siphon Life should now heal for the proper amount for Warlocks that have the Fel Armor passive ability.
  • Glyphs

  • Enemy at the Gates: Fixed an issue where players were unable to ride the War Serpent.

Pet Battles
  • Fabled Pandaren Pet Supplies should now always contain a Lesser Pet Treat.

Pet Battles
  • Scenarios
    • Secrets of Ragefire: Fixed an issue where certain situations could cause the Scenario to get stuck on Stage 3.

  • Enchant Weapon - Spirit of Conquest is now soulbound.
  • Enchant Weapon - Bloody Dancing Steel is now soulbound.

Battlefield: Barrens
  • Kor'kron Commanders are now non-faction specific multi-tap for all characters that attack them.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Elite Gear and Rating Requirements
Don't worry, elite gear tied to rating is coming back next season.
As I understand it, this is indeed the current plan. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Talent Choice Simplicity
Well. To be fair, a lot of people never look up how to spec their characters, and so in those cases the old system probably felt slightly more dynamic. Unfortunately what they didn't know is that their choices were probably wrong. But maybe they don't care that their choices were wrong and their character was suboptimal - that's an honest way to play a game. Not everyone wants to ensure their character is maximizing its output, and it's the look and feel of the system that's more important than its actual effect.

That said, the new trees are still superior in offering competing options and each one can change up how your character plays, and differentiate it from someone else. If you look at build guides these days the suggestions for talents are usually just breakdowns on how each one works and which ones work better in what situations. There generally aren't any clear cut builds because most choices are viable depending on what you're doing. Obviously everyone is going to have favorites, but the fact that talent builds are a discussion instead of a map on how to place points, I think it's worked out quite well.

I'll add in the caveat that it's not perfect, some trees don't offer great options, some options aren't taken very often, and those are things we'll continue to tweak. Overall though we're quite happy with how the new trees have hit the goals we set forth. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Conquest Point Catch Up
I've not even done arena on this char in this season, and my cap is only 10k.
This is because the catch up system doesn't function as is explained in the opening post of this thread. The cap you mentioned in your post is actually correct if you have not earnt any Conquest points yet this season, because we are in week 10. The formula is as follows (As Russlad said):

(Week of season x 1000) - Conquest already earned. = Conquest cap

If the result of this equation is a negative or below your normal weekly cap, this means that your Conquest cap will be calculated as it would any other normal week.

If you weren't 90 during those weeks you missed don't get any extra points from what I understand. Seems kinda buggy, my SP that has missed loads of weeks didn't get a bigger cap either but granted it has full gear.
This is incorrect. If a character dinged level 90 this week, their cap would be the same as a character that has been level 90 since patch 5.2 but has not earned any Conquest points this season. You do not miss out on cap for weeks of the season that you were not level 90 for. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Please dont nerf flying because of a small minority sport like world pvp.
We like the MoP solution for now - no flying while leveling with some no fly zones on top of that. (Source)

Consider adding a LFD-style bag system to LFR. Dps get shorter queues, tanks and healers get occasional rewards. Everyone wins
We might. (Source)

How long do you think your expansion design methodology (new continent, new class/race, 3 new herbs/ores/cloth) can last?
I think players want to see some new gameplay too and not just new iterations of the things they've seen before. (Source)
Even if they aren't for you, challenge modes, pet battles, the farm, scenarios were all new types of ways to spend time. (Source)

Not saying it’s bad, I like it…just feels totally different.
The 5.0 talent design will stick around for awhile. We agree that leveling is missing frequent rewards though. (Source)
The *current* talent design feels pretty solid to us. We'll iterate but no overhaul plans. #famouslastwords (Source)

Why not spend time optimizing existing game systems like crafting instead of adding new systems that eat up developer time?
Ideally we try to do a little of both. Some players get bored of the old systems even if they are very well polished. (Source)

A patch used to include dungeons and raids, not a patch is just balance and dailies.
Dragon Soul came with few new boss models and virtually no new architecture because of the 3 dungeons included in that patch. (Source)
By contrast, Throne of Thunder has a lot of new boss models and a lot of architecture. It came at the expense of no dungeons. (Source)
Is there a happy medium? Can we do both? Perhaps. It's something we will work on in the future. (Source)
Now granted many players enjoyed the heck out of those dungeons. But others were quite candid about the raid. (Source)
This makes me believe that dungeons take a lot more effort than many peeps realize. oO Loved the Eternity one.
The architecture (the physical dungeon) takes a very long time. The encounters take time too, but usually less. (Source)
You can mitigate that by doing outdoor dungeons, but it's easy to overdo those. (Source)
Why can't the scenario team work on dungeons instead? Can't stand scenarios as healer; even in guild as disc.
Good dungeons require a lot of art. (Source)

ICC had new boss models, a lot of arche AND dungs. And you were going to hire more people since 4 years ago
We could only do that because the previous tier had a rather small raid and dungeon (that are not universally loved). (Source)
We could delay patches more in order to have more content per patch. Not sure that's the right answer either. (Source)
Could also hire more, which we are trying to do. That's a slow solution though unless you're willing to sacrifice quality. (Source)
Couldn't you combine Scenarios with 5 man logic and use existing environment? Same for raids?
We could, yes. Concern would be that players may view that as rehashed content and not the "real" dungeons they were looking for. (Source)

I hope you guys understand the no new 5 mans announcement, non-queueing for heroic scenarios, etc. drive away casual players.
We're not sure that just 1-3 new dungeons provides content for players for very long. Even Magister's I didn't run 30-40 times. (Source)

tri-spec won't happen, fine... Where are the proving grounds? A whisper in the wind.
Working on them. But when we talk about unannounced features too much they tend to become "promises." Just the way it goes. (Source)

Why not use scenario to show progress in the stories in EK/Kalimdor? Like scenario showing the war in Ashenvale/Gilneas?
That would be cool. Currently our scenarios are focused on recent events, but the possibility certainly exists. (Source)

Will an item level squish affect our ability to solo older content? If it doesn't, I have no problem with it.
The goal is it will not affect your ability to solo older content. (Source)
Squish is useless, because it just delays the inevitable. Numbers will get out of hand again. Regular squishs inc?
Maybe? With the squish we had planned for MoP, we wouldn't need to do it again for 2-3 expansions. Every 1 might feel weird. (Source)

Any plans to impelement an in game voice communication? You need other software to play any serious pve/pvp. Isn't that weird?
Would love to do it, but it's one of those solutions that you have to get right and we certainly did not with our first attempt. (Source)

Icy Veins Class Guides 5.3 Update
Icy Veins has updated their class guides for Patch 5.3, as well as having them reviewed by top players of each class.

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