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by Published on 2010-09-15 04:23 PM

Cataclysm Currency and Honor Calculator

Emblems and Badges




Honor points!







Cataclysm Currency Changes Formula
Originally Posted by Vaneras (Blue Tracker)
Here's some information on how each of the currencies will be converted in the next content patch. Keep in mind these values may change, and they can get a bit math heavy. Just know that our intent is to appropriately value each mark and provide a conversion we feel is fair.

The following items are immediately converted to gold:


  • Emblem of Heroism = 5.5 gold each
  • Emblem of Valor = 5.5 gold each
  • Emblem of Conquest = 5.5 gold each
  • Badge of Justice = 1.833 gold each

Your New Honor Points total will be the sum of the following amounts:


  • Old Honor * 0.024
  • Old Arena Points * 0.85
  • Battleground Mark of Honor * 2.976
  • Wintergrasp Mark of Honor * 19.08
  • Stone Keeper Shard * 1.6
  • Venture Coin * 3
  • Spirit Shard * 1

Your Justice Points total will be equal to (Emblems of Triumph + Emblems of Frost ) * 2.75

Again, the softcap for both Honor and Justice conversions is 4000 points. This means that if a character converts to above 4,000 points, it will not be possible for them to earn more until they fall below the 4,000 cap.

A hardcap will be implemented in a following patch before Cataclysm's release. At that time, any excess points above 4,000 will be converted as follows:


  • Honor points above 4,000 are converted to gold at a rate of 35 silver per point of Honor.
  • Justice points above 4,000 are converted to gold at a rate of 2 gold per point of Justice.
by Published on 2010-09-14 04:07 PM

Update - Added today's Blue posts.

Cataclysm Currency Changes Explained
In a nutshell:
  • Emblems of Triumph and Emblems of Frost will be converted into Justice Points.
  • All PvE emblems and badges below Frost and Triumph will be converted into gold. This even includes legacy badges, like Badges of Justice.
  • Arena Points, Honor Points, any leftover Battleground Marks of Honor, Stone Keeper's Shards, Venture Coins, and Spirit Shards will be converted into the new Honor Points.
  • Rated Arenas and Rated Battlegrounds won't be available again until Season 9 (shortly after the release of Cataclysm), when they can be entered to win the higher-tier PvP Conquest Points.

Originally Posted by Bashiok (Blue Tracker)
As we discussed in our previous announcement (http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/th...Id=24401796793), we're refining the currency systems used for purchasing PvE and PvP items in World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, and the transition to this new system will take place in two stages. Today, we're going into more detail on how these changes will be rolled out, so if you haven't yet, make sure to check out the prior article to get up to speed on the currency names.

One change of note since that original announcement is that we've changed the name of the low-tier PvE currency from Hero Points to Justice Points. The original announcement post has been updated to reflect this.

Out With the Old

In the upcoming 4.0 patch we'll begin the first stage of the conversion to the new currencies. Emblems of Triumph and Emblems of Frost will be converted into Justice Points. For this initial conversion there will be a soft cap of points you can have, with a hard cap enforced later as detailed below. All PvE emblems and badges below Frost and Triumph will be converted into gold. This even includes legacy badges, like Badges of Justice. If any of these older currencies are converted into gold, the player will receive it through an in-game letter.

At this time any bosses a player defeats that are level-appropriate to them (and previously awarded badges or emblems upon defeat) will award them with the new Justice Points. Similarly, any items that previously cost emblems or badges of any type will now cost Justice Points instead.

On the PvP side, Season 8 will end with the release of patch 4.0, and all Arena Points, Honor Points, any leftover Battleground Marks of Honor, Stone Keeper's Shards, Venture Coins, and Spirit Shards will be converted into the new Honor Points. The new Honor Point pool will also have a soft cap for these conversions, but a hard cap will be enforced later. At the time of conversion, items that previously cost Honor or Arena Points will be sold in exchange for the new Honor Points. Rated Arenas and Rated Battlegrounds won't be available again until Season 9 (shortly after the release of Cataclysm), when they can be entered to win the higher-tier PvP Conquest Points.

In addition, purchasing any item with these secondary currencies (Honor Points and Justice Points) will now require that the purchaser meet the item's minimum level requirement.

It's important to note that these conversions are not 1:1, but are indicative of the level and relative worth of each before the conversion to the new point systems. For example, Stone Keeper's Shards will convert into more Honor Points than Spirit Shards.

Tip of the Cap

While we previously announced that there's a limit to the amount of these new currencies you can stockpile, we're providing a grace period in the form of a soft cap. This soft cap will allow the initial conversion to push the amount owned over the cap, but will not allow any further points to be earned (or returned through item refunds) until enough points are spent to put you below the hard cap.

For instance, a player has 3000 Emblems of Triumph, and 1200 Emblems of Frost; at the time of conversion they'll be given 4200 Justice Points. The hard cap for Justice Points is 4000, so that player won't be able to earn any more Justice Points until he or she spends enough points to reduce the total to under 4000. This also applies to the new PvP Honor Points, which also have a cap of 4000.

Shortly before Cataclysm is released, another patch will enforce the hard cap, marking the second stage of the currency conversion. Any Justice or Honor Points above the hard cap will be converted to gold, and just like in the first stage of the conversion, the player will receive an in-game letter explaining that some of their currencies were converted into gold as well as delivering the gold itself.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment

Cataclysm Dungeons Difficulty
We want dungeons to be challenging. Not brutal, but challenging. Yes, trying to get us to change our minds on that is going to take some pretty spectacular debate skills on your part given just how much feedback we've received on it over the past year or so. But you can try to explain to us what it is about more challenging 5-player dungeons that threatens you, or what you dislike, and we can try to accommodate you. For example, the dungeons aren't going to be four hour trash-clearing fests like Heroic Shadow Labyrinth. Likewise, we're not going to ask healers to sit on their hands for long stretches of time for fear of wasting mana, because everyone has an efficient spell they can use when nobody is in imminent danger. On the other hand, if you just hate the idea of healers having a resource at all, well that goes against the design of the game. (Source)

Archaeology
There is definitely a large component of Archaeology which should be very attractive to completionists. It's quite awesome though. I think it'll add a lot of flavor to the game without necessarily being one of those "must have X" professions/skills/abilities.

Allowing you to explore some ruins in Azeroth you may have otherwise overlooked and learn more about this world's rich history is something we're very excited about. It has elements that feel a bit like questing, but you have much more freedom to choose how and when you want to explore the world for new artifacts. It's been set up to allow for a fairly simple expansion of content over time as well, so we look forward to giving digging deeper into Archaeology in the future. (Source)

PvP Balancing in 4.0.1 and Arena Season
When the class changes go live, damage is going to be very high relative to health for level 80 characters. We are spending most our PvP balancing effort at level 85, since that by far is what matters most to players. The health pools at 85, decaying combat ratings (because you'll be going from tier 3 gear to tier 0 gear), extra talent points and the 3 new abilities make a huge difference overall.

Since the current PvP season will end when these changes go live, they shouldn't have a lasting impact on ratings, titles and the like. We are prepared to just drop a temporary player damage nerf on all BGs and Arenas if necessary just so things don't feel too silly until everyone can level up to 85.

How things feel at 85 is of far more importance to us. We fully expect to see a lot of posts from freaked out players who imagine 85 will feel just like 80, but it won't. The gain in survivability is substantial. (Source)

Resilience Rating in 4.0.1
20% less damage taken overall by players, pets, minions.
For now, just imagine that it's N less damage taken. The salient point is that resilience will no longer affect crit chance. We don't like the crit (and talents based on crits, etc.) are devalued in high resilience environments.

Health pools grow enormously going from level 80 to 85. Resilience needs to be strong enough that it's still an attractive stat for PvP gear, but you won't blow up in one or two globals* even with low resilience.

* - If you let someone build up towards one of their very powerful attacks, then you deserve what you get. But you shouldn't need to worry about dying the second combat starts unless you're decently outnumbered. (Source)

Shaman (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Enhancement Changes
In our current Cataclysm build, we have cut the Primal Wisdom talent (and give it as part of the Enhancement passive) and reduced Unleashed Rage from 3 to 2 ranks, but with the same overall effect. That should take care of the extra talent points that the tree seemed to have.

We are still working on making the Searing Totem a little smarter. (Source)
by Published on 2010-09-14 07:41 AM

Archaeology Preview
It's time for a small preview of Archaeology, the profession was added to the game in the latest beta build and most of the features are already implemented.

Archaeology Rewards
Let's directly jump to rewards, that's the only thing most people care about! As explained in an earlier blue posts, Blizzard changed their mind and decided to reward people with a few epic weapons/armors along with the cosmetic items.

1. Bind on Account Epic Items
Archaeology gives you epics! Of course, these artefacts will be fairly rare but with enough work you should be able to acquire a nice set of epic weapons and armors, including lvl 85 ones. This list of rewards might not be complete at this point

All these items will Bind on Account.

lvlTypeSpecSlotItem
359SwordMelee.DPS2-HandZin'rokh, Destroyer of Worlds
359SwordMelee.DPS1-HandScimitar of the Sirocco
359StaffSpell Spirit2-HandStaff of Ammunae
359StaffSpell2-HandStaff of Sorceror Thane Thaurissan
359FingerSpellFingerRing of the Boy Emperor
359TrinketSpellTrinketPendant of the Scarab Storm
359TrinketHealerTrinketTyrande's Favorite Doll
105MailPhys.DPSHeadHeadress of the First Shaman
67ClothSpellChestQueen Azshara's Dressing Gown



2. Mounts
The Scepter of Az'Aqir got a lot of attention when I first posted about it but isn't the only mount you can find.



The Scepter of Az'Aqir currently uses the model of the Blue AQ40 mount.


3. Companion Pets
3 Companion pets are available from Archaeology.



So far it looks like the Crawling Hand will be the most interesting one, especially for alliance players who already have an endless supply of gnomes slaves and won't be interested in a mechanical version. Below is a small preview of the animations of the Crawling Hand / Mummified Monkey Paw





4. Miscellaneous Items
Archaeology also rewards you with a lot of lore-oriented items, they're not really useful and are just here for fun. A lot of them aren't implemented yet and the only thing I can really get out of this is the model of the transformations.





Archaeology - How it works
Ghostcrawler wrote an awesome post about how Archaeology works and I don't think there is much more to add, maybe a couple of screenshots.
Originally Posted by Ghostcrawler (Blue Tracker)
Archaeology just went in this build for the first time and we don't yet have any of the support around it to teach players what to do. It has been informative to watch players learn to swim by drowning, but we thought it was time to offer a little more direction.

Digsites
Once you train archaeology, you can see digsites on your map (not your minimap - your map). There are always 4 digsites per continent. These will not change until you dig one out. Most of the time, you're probably only going to be concerned with the 4 sites on your current continent, but at higher character and archaeology skill levels, there will be 16 sites active at one time (4 each in Eastern Kingdoms, Kalimdor, Outland and Northrend.)

You will only find sites in zones of your level or lower. A level 25 player will have all 4 sites per continent in level 25 zones. (This means Outland and Northrend will have no sites at this time.) A level 80 player will have all 4 sites in any zone. A low level Kalimdor player might have sites in Ashenvale and Stonetalon, while a level 82 might have Uldum, Ashenvale, Stonetalon and Silithus.

Sites are race specific. You can usually guess the race by the location. Kalimdor tends to have a lot of night elf ruins. Eastern Kingdoms tends to have a lot of dwarf ruins.

Some races are only available on some continents (such as orc and draenei on Outland). You need to have a minimum character level and a minimum archaeology level to use these. Currently you can see them if you are a certain character level but can't gather from them until your archaeology skill is higher. For Outland, the skill is 300. While somewhat consistent with other gathering skills, we think this is confusing and we will change it so that you don't even see the digsites until your archaeology skill is sufficiently high. Tol'vir artifacts are the most rewarding, but also require near max archaeology skill to recover.

Some players are reporting some issues with digsites not showing up correctly. We'll look into these bugs.

Unlike other gathering skills, digsites are player-specific. Other players will be searching in different locations. There is no competition for digsites.

Fragments
Each digsite can be searched 3 times before it despawns and a new site spawns. If there is a digsite somewhere too far away from you or otherwise inconvenient, just ignore it and hit the closer ones. You won't run out.

To search a digsite, use the Survey ability. The survey tool will spawn and point in the approximate direction of the artifact. Red means you're far away. Yellow means you're close. Green means you may be within 40 yards or so. When you discover your find, you'll get fragments specific to a particular race.

There are two main strategies to surveying. You can attempt to triangulate by moving around the outer edge of a digsite. (Like quest blobs, the digsites are not necessarily circular.) Other players just keep surveying, heading in the direction the tool points until they strike paydirt.

Remember, the thing you uncover is yours. There is no competition with other players and nobody can gank your node.

Artifacts
Whenever you get a new fragment for a race, you'll start a research project. You can only work on one artifact per race at a time. When you have enough fragments, click Solve to complete that artifact. You won't waste excess fragments -- they will just start the next project. You can be working on one project for each race at a time.

Most artifacts are common. These give you a little bit of lore or flavor text and an item you can sell for a small profit (presumably to a museum!) The profit increases as the value of the artifact increases. You can estimate this by the number of fragments needed to finish the artifact. You will only find cheaper artifacts at low level, but you can find cheap and valuable artifacts at higher level (the reason for this is we want players to be able to find all the artifacts if they want to). You won't find a second copy of a common object until you have found all the artifacts of that race. If you get stuck at a certain skill level of archaeology or character level, you may find an artifact more than once until you reach the next tier.

Some artifacts are rare. These always make a blue or purple item. Many of these have no in-game power and are toys or for flavor. Some of them are actual weapons and armor. The latter items are all bound to account. They aren't heirlooms in that they don't scale, but you can pass them around. So if you are level 80 and you find a level 60 axe, you can always have another character use it when they are level 60. You will never get a rare artifact more than once.

The future
We designed archaeology to be easily expandable, so we plan to add much more content in future patches, including new races to research (though to be fair, there's a sizable amount of content already). We also have a feature that is not available on beta yet, that allows you to use your archaeology skill for a slight (think Fish Feast-level) bonus in the Cataclysm dungeons.

Training

Spellbook

Continent Map

Zone Map

Survey

Survey (Details)

Artifact!



Archaeology Video
As usual, TotalBiscuit released a nice video preview of Archaeology.



Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment

AQ20 is a 10-player raid in Cataclysm
ZG is being removed as a L60 raid. Havent heard anything about AQ20 though.
AQ20 has been converted to a 10 player raid. (Source)

Reforging on 4.0.1 PTRs
We've been creating a lot of builds lately for 4.0.1 and Cataclysm beta, so Reforging NPCs may not yet be available. As with all PTR processes, the patch notes are not comprehensive. Some changes may not be reflected in the notes, while others may not yet be available in the current build.

If Reforging is not yet active, it should be in an upcoming build. We want to give players a chance to try out the new feature. With all of the class changes going in, Reforging will allow players the opportunity to customize their gear a bit more before Cataclysm actually ships. It will also allow you to add Mastery to existing items if you so choose. (Source)

World Changes / New Race and Class combinations in Patch 4.0.1
The world will not be changing in patch 4.0.1. We are planning to apply those changes in patch 4.0.3 shortly before Cataclysm launch. (Source)

[...] New race/class combinations and changes to the old world (including quests) should be patch 4.0.3. I know it's kind of confusing since we typically release one major patch right before the release of the next expansion. In this case, many of the systems changes will be added in 4.0.1, while a lot of content changes will be added in 4.0.3.

The expansion will then provide players with access to the new races, new zones, level 85 cap, flight in Azeroth, Archaeology, etc. (Source)

Reduced XP from 70 to 80
This is still a possibility, but it's probably not something we're going to do immediately with the release of Cataclysm. (Source)

Guild XP for boss kills
Guild xp for boss kills is scaled on a few factors.

- Boss level
- Normal / Heroic
- Amount of guild members present (more xp for raids, since they are limited to once a week)

Hope this helps. (Source)

Spamming cheap heals in Cataclysm
Right now on the Beta videos a lot of the healers seem to be spamming the weak "Heal" for 90% of the time. So spamming is ok and we are expected to spam for most of the fight as long as what we're spamming is a weak spell? is this truly what is intended for Cata healers?
No, that's not the intent. We made those heals very cheap so that healers wouldn't be in constant terror of running out of mana. We also are making the normal modes easier than the heroic modes. You'll have to pair the right heal for the right situation to a greater degree in heroic modes. I think part of what you're seeing is that healers are using the base heal because they can get away with it. It's also possible that in our effort to distinguish them from the more expensive heals that we made the base heals too cheap or efficient. (Source)

Mage (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Arcane Mastery
According to Kavan on EJ, this theory of aiming to maintain your mana above some percentage is wrong anyways. If there was a magical percentage, it would be 40% because the idea is to gradually ramp up your cycle's mps as you get closer and closer to using evocation. What matters is the time at which your evocation comes off cooldown, not some magical percentage point at which mastery becomes more or less effective.
I think that's more accurate. Generally speaking, the approach is something along the lines of...

Evocation and mana gem are available at the start so you burn some mana quickly, use gem and dps cooldowns, burn more down to 40%, evoc back to 100%, play conservatively until mana cooldowns are available, burn more, then come back up and play conservatively, then nearing the end of the fight you try to time your burn down once again to match the end of the fight.

I like arcane mastery because it adds some depth to an otherwise shallow spec. It changes the way I play mid encounter in a controlled way as opposed to stupid stuff like hot streak where I just hope for the best. I will be making some mistakes (none as dumb as waiting until 20% mana to evocate or using arcane missiles every time it's up LULZ), gradually over time I'll get bored and look into / math out minor details and make fewer/smaller mistakes.
Yeah, that. My gut says it'll be very hard for players to perfectly optimize their fights since optimal behavior will be different from fight to fight and further vary based on mastery level, but most players will (hopefully) be able to use general guidelines to get reasonable results from the spec. (Source)

Warrior (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Slam Scaling
It's not important to keep Slam scaling with haste so long as Arms scales with haste. It's only a problem if you'd get to the point of dropping Slam from your rotation or something, which we think is unlikely. We'll make sure Heroic Strike never eclipses Slam. Heroic Strike isn't supposed to be a button you're ever excited about pushing at the expense of something else. It's just there so the rage doesn't go to waste. (Source)

Blood Frenzy
That Blood Frenzy changes lets us give Arms as much rage as needed from haste to make sure that haste is valuable from the resource-generation side. It's already valuable from the damage side -- it is not the case that increasing haste is a dps loss for Arms. I realize you might have made this post before mine in the beta forum. The challenge of communicating in two places at once. (Source)

Arms Rotation
The Arms rotation is Rend, Colossus Smash, Mortal Strike and Slam, with Overpower and additional Colossus Smash procs, and Heroic Strike as a rage dump. (Source)
by Published on 2010-09-13 08:11 AM

So, when is the release of Cataclysm?
Now that Patch 4.0.1 is on PTR, I get a lot of mails asking for a release date and I guess I can answer that without too much risk now.

Keep in mind that Blizzard didn't announce it because the release can still be postponed, but as far as I know the target release date for Cataclysm is the first week of November (that would be November 2, if you like numbers). The first part of the Cataclysm prologue started exactly 8 weeks before that and the next part of the pre-Cataclysm event will probably happen in 2 or 4 weeks depending on their schedule.

You got your answer, and hopefully people won't yell at me if something goes wrong.


Gathering professions now give XP
Originally Posted by Daeleht (Blue Tracker)
This is an intentional change, however the values may not be final. Tradeskill nodes are intended to give you experience when you loot them.

Bastion of Twilight - Twilight Ascendant Council
The last member of the Twilight Ascendant Council had its model updated in the latest build. This encounter definitely looks promising.



Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment

Mimiron's Head/Invincible in 4.0
Ghostcrawler's stated idea to make such things really low drop rates is still a real possibility. Whether or not this change will take effect with patch 4.0.1 is to be determined. (Source)

Flying in Azeroth
Flying in Azeroth will not be possible until your account is upgraded to Cataclysm. Patch 4.0.1 is slated to be released prior to Cataclysm and will not include the changes to the old world or any content exclusive to Cataclysm. This patch will apply many systems, class, and user interface changes. It's very similar in nature to the major patches which preceded the releases of The Burning Crusade and Wrath of the Lich King. (Source)

Raid/Dungeons Content Difficulty
You are correct that a lot of players moan about things being too easy without having seen the content personally. We definitely place less emphasis on their feedback than on people who have actually tried those encounters.

The hardest encounters of LK were harder than anything we've offered before. And honestly, that point isn't often in contention. I think what surprised players is say how far they got in Naxxramas on their very first night, without a lot of planning or gearing, or how they managed to kill 2-3 heroic bosses on their first night of a new heroic wing being opened in Icecrown (though to be honest, fighting a boss for weeks on normal mode first definitely exacerbates that phenomenon).

We'll continue to offer some content for the cutting-edge progression raider. There is an encounter in Bastion of Twilight for them. But we also think true pugs shouldn't be stumbling their way through encounters they've never seen before, at least without a very strong or experienced leader.

To use my own guild as an example, in say the Serpentshrine days, we'd take a few weeks to master a new boss. I could probably count the number of time we got two new bosses on one night. I think a progression rate like that feels better to a lot of players. You spend time in between raid nights discussing what you could do differently on a tough boss, but then celebrate each victory.

A heroic dungeon doesn't need to be quite so brutal, but it still doesn't seem bad if you wipe on a new boss 2-3 times before you figure out a solid stragegy and everything falls into place. A lot of players love that puzzle-solving aspect of the encounters. It lets them exercise their mind, creativity and knowledge of game mechanics. When you can just overpower the boss and ignore the encounter mechanics, then a lot of that is lost. (Source)

Class balance on PTRs
Most likely not. We'll be evaluating the way players are performing in content on the 4.0.1 test realms, but keep in mind the class changes are balanced around level 85 gameplay. It's almost more likely we'd end up taking away the Icecrown Citadel buff (I'm only saying this is a possibility), as in many cases healing, tanking, and damage dealing may stand to benefit a lot from these changes at level 80.

Things will be a little bit interesting since these changes are being applied while players are still actively working through the current Wrath of the Lich King content. Bear with us and provide as much feedback as you can about your experiences with these changes under the current content, but keep in perspective that the new class design is meant to be balanced around the upcoming Cataclysm content. We're more interested in ironing out bugs and polishing the systems than attempting to balance them intricately for level 80 gameplay. (Source)

Using all your healing spells
This is a very common line of argument we see from players, especially healers. It runs something like "I use all my heals. I seem to be a pretty good healer. Therefore only using a few heals makes you a bad healer." It should make you a bad healer (if our numbers are appropriate) but often it does not. Often those 1-2 spells can take you 90% of the way there and the additional heals used my more savvy players only adds 10% or so optimization on top of that. You might have been a better paladin for using all of your toolbox, but the fact is that even very mediocre paladins could heal just fine using only those two buttons. That's not what we are going for. If you're used to using a variety of spells, then this change won't affect you much. (Source)

Making healing more challenging
We see the sentiment expressed often that making healing more challenging might drive players away. That is a risk, but the flip side is that making healing more engaging might attract some players who find it boring today.

While it has always been a goal to make World of Warcraft approachable to a lot of different kinds of players, including those who found traditional MMOs too hardcore, we'd rather retain players because the gameplay is fun than because the gameplay is easy.

Taking your argument to a probably illogical conclusion, if we made healing even easier, we might get even more players to heal. Is that really good for the game as a whole though? (Source)

Lack of healers in the Dungeon Finder in Cataclysm?
Players played WoW for six years without Dungeon Finder though. Dungeon Finder is awesome, don't get me wrong, and I spent a lot of time personally working on it. But the intent is not to be able farm dungeons as fast as you possibly can.

Healing (and tanking as well) isn't for everyone. It takes the right kind of mindset. I know there are players who want to make healing and tanking super easy in an attempt to adjust the ratios of dps to tanking and healing. There are also some who just want to get rid of the healing role completely.

None of those are our goals though. We want to make healing fun for healers, not make healing so easy that anyone can jump in without any fear of failure.

I remember looking for Scholomance or Shadow Labs pugs for literally 2-3 hours. There is almost no chance of that ever happening again now that we have Dungeon Finder, even if tanking and healing require a little more finesse.

So to answer your question, I think having more healers available at any cost is bad for the game. We want healing to be fun for people who like healing. If that means the mages and rouges have to wait 15 minutes for Dungeon Finder instead of 5 minutes, I think we can live with that. If nothing else, fast Dungeon Finder queues (or ease in finding a raid slot, etc.) remain attractive benefits of tanking and healing. (Source)

Paladin (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
70% spell pushback
Hopefully they just make the 70% baseline for everyone with no pushback with earth shield or concentration aura type spells. Spell pushback is one of those things that can really drive you crazy in both PvP and PvE.
We did. We just changed the base pushback resistance so that we didn't have to duplicate the same passive bonus in every tree.

Tanking / Crusader Strike
If CS and HotR are meant to be single/multi-target counterparts, then they should both hit as the same type of damage. Since CS is stuck as physical due to Ret using it, HotR should probably be switched to physical as well. Mana cost of HotR seems lower than it should be, compared to CS.
We want Prot paladins to be able to swap between Shield of the Righteous and Inquisition when going from single-target to AE tanking. One of the mechanics that lets that work is Hammer of the Righteous being improved by Holy damage.

Crusader Strike should win handily against single targets. If it's not doing that yet it's just a numbers adjustment, so you'd be better off testing as if it were the case rather than trying to build a rotation based around something that you know we're likely to change. (Source)

MMO Report
It's time for your monday's MMO Report, Casey is back!



Comics
Teh Gladiators #166 + #167 and Dark Legacy Comics #255 is out. Sometimes a nice smile goes a long way.

by Published on 2010-09-12 04:01 AM

Patch 4.0.1 now on Test Realms
Patch 4.0.1 is now available on test realms (=not beta, the regular test realms). People who aren't in the Cataclysm beta yet can now test most of the Cataclysm features, aside from anything requiring leveling.



This is basically the exact same build as Cataclysm Beta, just without all the Cataclysm-only stuff. Old world changes, new quests, etc ... are NOT AVAILABLE, but will be available on live realms for people without the expansion after it's deployed.

Basically, on the test realms:


  • Classes changes are up, new talent builds, new glyphs (not fully implemented yet), etc ...
  • Revamped old zones are NOT available
  • New graphics (textures, water effects) are NOT available
  • Archaeology is NOT available
  • Guild leveling is NOT available
  • Flying in Azeroth is NOT available
  • New content is NOT available

I think that's enough to answer 95% of the questions about this.


PTR 4.0.1 Patch Notes
Originally Posted by Zarhym (Blue Tracker)
World of Warcraft PTR Patch 4.0.1

The latest patch notes can always be found at http://www.worldofwarcraft.com/patchnotes/
The latest test realm patch notes can always be found at http://www.worldofwarcraft.com/patch...atchnotes.html

General
  • Copied Test Realm characters are not copied with their achievement history in order to better facilitate the character copy process.

Classes: General
  • Many class talents, spells, and abilities have been overhauled, added, or removed.
  • All spell and ability tooltips will now display damage averages rather than minimum and maximum damage potential. This feature is on by default but can be changed via the Display settings under User Interface options.
  • Ammo has been removed from the game.
  • The character levels at which classes gain new spells and abilities have changed.
  • Many item and class stats have been changed or removed.
  • Rage has been normalized.
  • Spells and abilities no longer have multiple ranks and now scale with character level.
  • Talent trees have been altered. All player talent specializations have been reset, allowing for free re-specialization.
    • Each specialization has been reduced to a 31-point talent tree.
    • Players will now get a total of 41 talent points to spend.
    • Players will be asked to choose a specialization at level 10. Doing so will result in the unlocking of a spell or ability unique to that specialization, as well as one or more passive bonuses.
    • Once a talent specialization has been chosen, players may only place points in the primary tree until at least 31 points have been spent there.
    • The initial announcement regarding these talent tree changes can be found on our Cataclysm forum: http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/th...26290449&sid=1



Death Knight (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
  • A dedicated tanking tree (Blood) has been implemented.
  • The effects of Blood Presence and Frost Presence have been exchanged.
  • The way in which runes recharge has changed.

Druid (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
  • A new Eclipse mechanic has been added for druids.

Hunter (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
  • Five pets can now be stored with the hunter at all times. Any one of these five pets can be summoned via the Call Pet ability.
  • Focus has replaced mana as a new resource.
  • Hunters now start with a pet at level 1.
  • The Stable will now store 20 pets. If a pet is moved into the Stable, its talents are wiped.

Mage (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
  • There is now a new spell fly-out UI feature for mage portals. Clicking on the Teleport or Portal buttons will expand the list of choices available.

Paladin (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
  • Paladins now have a new resource bar.

Warlock (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
  • There is now a new spell fly-out UI feature for warlock pets. Clicking on this single button will open up the list of available pets to summon.
  • Soul Shards have been removed from the game as items. Instead, they now exist as a resource system necessary for using, or altering the mechanics of certain spells.

Items
  • Resilience no longer reduces the chance a player will be critically hit by an opponent.
  • Durability: cloth, leather, and mail now have as many points of durability as plate, making the repair cost on death much closer to equal for all classes.

Professions
  • The glyph system has been updated to now feature three different types of glyphs. Many class glyphs have been added, altered, or moved to different glyph types.

User Interface
  • Spell Alerts have been added to notify players when procs on select spells and abilities occur. A visual notification will display around the character and the activated ability will be highlighted on the action bar.
  • The Arena Teams pane has been improved.
  • The Character pane has been redesigned. Character stats can now be shown or hidden via the Show All Details/Hide All Details button on the bottom left. When shown, all character stats will be visible in a window to the right of the pane. Stat sections can be reorganized by clicking and dragging them up or down the pane.
  • The Professions panes now have more filtering and search functionality, as well as buttons to easily link recipes in the chat frame.
  • A Professions screen has been added to the Spellbook to better display the details of a character’s primary and secondary professions.
  • Many of the yellow System Messages that would display in the chat frame when leveling up have been removed.
  • New text animations now alert players as they level up, also providing information on when new talents, spells and abilities are available.
  • Professions and Class Trainers windows have been altered to more clearly display available and upcoming purchases.
  • New Raid frames are now. They can also be used in place of the standard 5-player party interface via the User Interface options.
  • The Spellbook interface has been improved for greater ease-of-use and visual appeal.
  • For additional notes on Lua and XML changes please visit the UI & Macros Forum: http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/bo...&forumId=11114
by Published on 2010-09-11 08:51 AM

Cataclysm Beta - Build 12942 Hunter Pet Changes
This build revamped most of the pets abilities with a very simple goal, make pets useful. The result is a more active pet for Death Knight, and an insane amount of possible raid buffs for hunters depending on what pet they have. Yes, they also have Heroism/Bloodlust if they're specced in Beast Mastery.

If you ever dreamed about your pet having tons of possible abilities, your dream probably looked a lot like this list.
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Hunter (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Utility Abilities
(Pets with a - E are exotic pets tameable only by Beast Mastery Hunters)

Bloodlust / Heroism
  • Ancient Hysteria (Core Hound - E) - Increases melee, ranged, and spell casting speed by 30% for all party and raid members. Lasts 40 sec.
    Allies receiving this effect will become Sated and be unable to benefit from Bloodlust or Time Warp again for 10 min. / Instant, 6 min cooldown

Healing
  • Spirit Mend (Spirit Beast - E) - The Spirit Beast heals the currently friendly target for {1237.75+((RAP*0.35)*0.5)} plus an additional {475.97+((RAP*0.35)*0.335)} over 10 sec. / 25 yd range, Instant, 40 sec cooldown

Stat Boost (BoK)
  • Embrace of the Shale Spider - Fills all friendly party and raid members with the Shale Spider's embrace, increasing Strength, Agility, Stamina, and Intellect by %. / Instant

Stamina Buff

Critical Strike Buff
  • Furious Howl (Wolf / Dog) - The wolf lets out a furious howl, increasing the critical strike chance of all party and raid members by 5%. / Instant, 45 sec cooldown
  • Terrifying Roar (Devilsaur - E) - The devilsaur lets out a terrifying roar, increasing the critical strike chance of all party and raid members by 5%. / Instant, 45 sec cooldown

Casting Speed Reduction
  • Lava Breath (Core Hound - E) - Your pet breathes a double gout of molten lava at the target, reducing the target's casting speed by 25% for 10 sec. / 30 yd range, Instant, 8 sec cooldown (No longer deals damage)
  • Spore Cloud (Sporebat) - Dusts nearby enemies with spores, reducing all enemy targets within 6 yards casting speed by 25% for 9 sec. / 6 yd range, Instant, 12 sec cooldown

Attack Speed Reduction
  • Dust Cloud (Tallstrider) - Your tallstrider kicks up an obscuring cloud of dust, causing all enemies within 10 yards to have their melee and ranged attack speed reduced by 20% for 8 sec. / 5 yd range, Instant, 40 sec cooldown
  • Tailspin - Your fox twirls its tail around, kicking up an obscuring cloud of dust, causing all enemies within 10 yards to have their melee and ranged attack speed reduced by 20% for 8 sec. / 5 yd range, Instant, 40 sec cooldown

Movement Speed Reduction
  • Ankle Crack (Crocolisk) - Snap at the target's feet, reducing movement speed by 50% for 6 sec. / 5 yd range, Instant, 10 sec cooldown (Replaces Bad Attitude)
  • Frost Breath (Chimaera - E) - Your pet simultaneously breathes frost and lightning at an enemy target, slowing the target for 5 sec. / 30 yd range, Instant, 10 sec cooldown (No longer deals damage)
  • Time Warp (Warp Stalker) - Slows time around the enemy, reducing their movement speed by 50% for 6 sec. / 25 yd range, Instant, 15 sec cooldown

Healing Debuff
  • Monstrous Bite (Devilsaur - E) - Your devilsaur ferociously bites the enemy, reducing the effectiveness of any healing received by 25% for 8 sec. / 5 yd range, Instant, 8 sec cooldown

Root
  • Venom Web Spray (Silithid - E) - Sprays toxic webs at the target, preventing movement for 5 sec. / 30 yd range, Instant, 40 sec cooldown (Up from 4 sec, no longer deals damage)
  • Web (Spider) - Encases the target in sticky webs, preventing movement for 5 sec. / 30 yd range, Instant, 40 sec cooldown

Silence / Interrupt
  • Serenity Dust (Moth) - The moth's wings produce a cloud of dust that interrupts the enemies spellcasting and preventing any spell in that school from being cast for 2 sec. / 25 yd range, Instant, 1 min cooldown

Armor Reduction (Sunder Armor)
  • Tear Armor (Raptor) - Tears at the enemies armor with the raptor's talons, reducing it by 4%. Stacks up to 5 times. Lasts 30 sec. / 5 yd range, Instant, 6 sec cooldown
  • Corrosive Spit (Serpent) - Spits poison at an enemy, corroding their armor, reducing it by 4%. Stacks up to 5 times. Lasts 30 sec. / 30 yd range, Instant, 6 sec cooldown

Increased Bleed Damage
  • Gore (Boar) - Your boar gores the enemy, causing it to take 30% additional damage from bleed effects for 15 sec. / 5 yd range, Instant, 10 sec cooldown
  • Tendon Rip (Hyena) - Tears at an enemy's legs, increasing damage taken from bleed effects by 30% for 15 sec. / 5 yd range, Instant, 10 sec cooldown

Increased Magic Damage
  • Fire Breath (Dragonhawk) - Breathes Fire on the target, increasing magic damage taken by 8% for 45 sec. / 40 yd range, Channeled, 30 sec cooldown
  • Lightning Breath (Wind Serpent) - Breathes lightning, increasing magic damage taken by 8% for 45 sec. / 40 yd range, Channeled, 30 sec cooldown

Increased Physical Damage
  • Acid Spit (Worm - E) - Your worm spits acid, causing the enemy target to take an increased 4% physical damage for 25 sec. / 20 Focus, 30 yd range, Instant, 10 sec cooldown
  • Ravage (Ravager) - Violently attacks an enemy, causing the enemy target to take 4% increased physical damage for 25 sec. / 5 yd range, Instant, 15 sec cooldown

Stun
  • Sonic Blast - Emits a piercing shriek, stunning the target for 2 sec. / 20 yd range, Instant, 1 min cooldown (No longer deals damage)
  • Sting (Wasp) - Your wasp stings the target, stunning them for 2 sec. / 5 yd range, Instant, 45 sec cooldown

Physical Damage Reduction
  • Demoralizing Roar (Bear) - The bear roars, reducing the physical damage caused by all enemies within yards by 10% for 15 sec. / 5 yd range, Instant, 10 sec cooldown

Disarm
  • Clench (Scorpid) - The scorpid clenches the enemy's weapon with its talons, and disarming their main hand and ranged weapons for 10 sec. / 5 yd range, Instant, 1 min cooldown

DPS Abilities
  • Bite - Bite the enemy, causing {187.74+((RAP*0.35)*0.40)} damage. / 25 Focus, 5 yd range, Instant, 3 sec cooldown
  • Claw - Claw the enemy, causing {187.74+((RAP*0.35)*0.40)} damage. / 25 Focus, 5 yd range, Instant, 3 sec cooldown
  • Smack - Smack the enemy, causing {187.74+((RAP*0.35)*0.40)} damage. / 25 Focus, 5 yd range, Instant, 3 sec cooldown

Cataclysm Beta - Build 12942 Death Knight Pet Changes
I already mentioned that the Death Knight's ghoul is already getting an overhaul in this patch. Unholy Death Knights can pick the Shadow Infusion and Dark Transformation talents.

If the Death Knight uses Death Coil 5 times and activates Dark Transformation, the ghoul gains a 100% damage buff and a new set of skills for 30 seconds.
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
  • Gnaw becomes - Strike an enemy with a smashing attack, dealing 125% of normal melee damage and stunning for 4 sec.
  • Huddle becomes - Unleash a fortifying roar, reducing all damage taken by 50% for 10 sec.
  • Claw becomes - Rakes an enemy with deformed claws, dealing 150% of normal damage to the target and up to 2 additional targets.
  • Leap becomes - Charge an enemy, interrupting spellcasting and immobilizing them for 2 sec.




Golden King Video Preview
Kody released a short video preview of the Golden King, the Alliance lion guild mount. It currently costs 200 gold and require your guild to have the Dungeon Diplomat achievement. The blank spot on the lion is supposed to display your guild tabard but it is currently bugged on beta realms.



How Archaeology works
Ghostcrawler explained how Archaeology works on official forums, there is also a very nice post from MortalWombat on our forums with a couple of extra information and tons of screenshots.

Originally Posted by Ghostcrawler (Blue Tracker)
Archaeology just went in this build for the first time and we don't yet have any of the support around it to teach players what to do. It has been informative to watch players learn to swim by drowning, but we thought it was time to offer a little more direction.

Digsites
Once you train archaeology, you can see digsites on your map (not your minimap - your map). There are always 4 digsites per continent. These will not change until you dig one out. Most of the time, you're probably only going to be concerned with the 4 sites on your current continent, but at higher character and archaeology skill levels, there will be 16 sites active at one time (4 each in Eastern Kingdoms, Kalimdor, Outland and Northrend.)

You will only find sites in zones of your level or lower. A level 25 player will have all 4 sites per continent in level 25 zones. (This means Outland and Northrend will have no sites at this time.) A level 80 player will have all 4 sites in any zone. A low level Kalimdor player might have sites in Ashenvale and Stonetalon, while a level 82 might have Uldum, Ashenvale, Stonetalon and Silithus.

Sites are race specific. You can usually guess the race by the location. Kalimdor tends to have a lot of night elf ruins. Eastern Kingdoms tends to have a lot of dwarf ruins.

Some races are only available on some continents (such as orc and draenei on Outland). You need to have a minimum character level and a minimum archaeology level to use these. Currently you can see them if you are a certain character level but can't gather from them until your archaeology skill is higher. For Outland, the skill is 300. While somewhat consistent with other gathering skills, we think this is confusing and we will change it so that you don't even see the digsites until your archaeology skill is sufficiently high. Tol'vir artifacts are the most rewarding, but also require near max archaeology skill to recover.

Some players are reporting some issues with digsites not showing up correctly. We'll look into these bugs.

Unlike other gathering skills, digsites are player-specific. Other players will be searching in different locations. There is no competition for digsites.

Fragments
Each digsite can be searched 3 times before it despawns and a new site spawns. If there is a digsite somewhere too far away from you or otherwise inconvenient, just ignore it and hit the closer ones. You won't run out.

To search a digsite, use the Survey ability. The survey tool will spawn and point in the approximate direction of the artifact. Red means you're far away. Yellow means you're close. Green means you may be within 40 yards or so. When you discover your find, you'll get fragments specific to a particular race.

There are two main strategies to surveying. You can attempt to triangulate by moving around the outer edge of a digsite. (Like quest blobs, the digsites are not necessarily circular.) Other players just keep surveying, heading in the direction the tool points until they strike paydirt.

Remember, the thing you uncover is yours. There is no competition with other players and nobody can gank your node.

Artifacts
Whenever you get a new fragment for a race, you'll start a research project. You can only work on one artifact per race at a time. When you have enough fragments, click Solve to complete that artifact. You won't waste excess fragments -- they will just start the next project. You can be working on one project for each race at a time.

Most artifacts are common. These give you a little bit of lore or flavor text and an item you can sell for a small profit (presumably to a museum!) The profit increases as the value of the artifact increases. You can estimate this by the number of fragments needed to finish the artifact. You will only find cheaper artifacts at low level, but you can find cheap and valuable artifacts at higher level (the reason for this is we want players to be able to find all the artifacts if they want to). You won't find a second copy of a common object until you have found all the artifacts of that race. If you get stuck at a certain skill level of archaeology or character level, you may find an artifact more than once until you reach the next tier.

Some artifacts are rare. These always make a blue or purple item. Many of these have no in-game power and are toys or for flavor. Some of them are actual weapons and armor. The latter items are all bound to account. They aren't heirlooms in that they don't scale, but you can pass them around. So if you are level 80 and you find a level 60 axe, you can always have another character use it when they are level 60. You will never get a rare artifact more than once.

The future
We designed archaeology to be easily expandable, so we plan to add much more content in future patches, including new races to research (though to be fair, there's a sizable amount of content already). We also have a feature that is not available on beta yet, that allows you to use your archaeology skill for a slight (think Fish Feast-level) bonus in the Cataclysm dungeons.
Random Character Services Buttons
Originally Posted by Zarhym (Blue Tracker)
In the latest build players will notice paid character services buttons appear next to characters at random on the Character Selection screen. These are the buttons you would normally see after purchasing any service, such as race, realm, or faction changes, or character customization. If a character service button shows up next to one of your characters, you can click it to make use of a free race change or character customization (faction change coming soon). You can make use of these buttons as often as you like, but the services for which you’re selected are randomly chosen for you and will update every hour. So, say if you don’t want to change your race but would like to customize your appearance on a specific character, you will need to wait for the right button to appear.

Please note that these buttons are only for beta testing purposes and are not intended to be released for free on live realms. We want beta testers to stress test our paid services so we can ensure they are operating smoothly when World of Warcraft: Cataclysm is released.

New Flight Skill
Just in case you missed it.
Originally Posted by Zarhym (Blue Tracker)
We’ve added a new flying skill called Flight Master's License. When World of Warcraft: Cataclysm is released, players who purchase the expansion will see this skill available from flight trainers for 250 gold once they reach level 60. This new skill is required for flying around all Kalimdor and Eastern Kingdoms zones, including the new level 80-85 zones.

Battleground Titles and Achievements
Originally Posted by Zarhym (Blue Tracker)
Honor titles have been added into World of Warcraft: Cataclysm. These titles are earned when specific Battleground Achievements are completed, and are triggered when specific Battleground rating milestones are met. The titles remain the same as the original PvP titles, however, players who obtained these titles from the original Battleground ranking system will not lose them. The Feats of Strength associated with the original titles have been altered slightly to denote that they were earned under the old system, although the titles themselves remain the same.

As of now, the first ranks -- Private for Alliance and Scout for Horde -- are earned when a player reaches a Battleground rating of 1100. The ranks increase every 100 rating points, up to Grand Marshal/High Warlord at 2400 rating. Titles earned through the new system are yours to keep and will not be wiped with each season.

In addition, all-new titles and Achievements will be added for top performers. Hero of the Alliance and Hero of the Horde will be awarded to players who finish a season in the top .5% of the rated Battleground ladder. These titles will be wiped at the end of each new season, however, a new Achievement will be awarded to players who earn this title each season. Let’s see how many seasons in a row you can stay in the top .5%!

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment

Player vs. Player
Rated Battlegrounds Min Level
It's limited to 85's. (Source)

"Old" Battleground Titles back in Cataclysm
As you noted in your edit, the original titles are not going to be taken away from players who already have them. The Feats of Strength associated with the old titles will be changed slightly to more clearly distinguish them from the Achievements associated with the returning titles.

Here's a brief rundown of how the rated Battleground titles will function in Cataclysm, and how the original titles can be earned by players who did not have a chance to participate in the original ranking system:

As of now, the first ranks -- Private for Alliance and Scout for Horde -- are earned when a player reaches a Battleground rating of 1100. The ranks increase every 100 rating points, up to Grand Marshal/High Warlord at 2400 rating. Titles earned through the new system are yours to keep and will not be wiped with each season.

In addition, all-new titles and Achievements will be added for top performers. Hero of the Alliance and Hero of the Horde will be awarded to players who finish a season in the top .5% of the rated Battleground ladder. These titles will be wiped at the end of each new season, however, a new Achievement will be awarded to players who earn this title each season.

Let’s see how many seasons in a row you can stay in the top .5%! (Source)

Guild Leveling / Perks
Guild Perks on Beta
All guild perks should be working as of today's build except for Happy Hour and Chug-A-Lug. These will both be active in our next build. (Source)

Mobile Guild Bank requirements
You need Friendly guild faction to use the mobile guild bank. That is updated in the tooltip for the next build. There is currently a bug where it is set to friendly. (Source)

Guild Raids & Dungeons Achievements
In general we require 80% of the group to be comprised of guild members. There are exceptions to this case though like 40 man raids and arenas. All the gritty details below are below.
4/5 - dungeons
8/10 - 10 player raid, 10 player BG
20/25 - 25 player raid, 25 player BG
10/40 - 40 player raid
12/15 - 15 player BG
2/2, 3/3, 5/5 - Arenas (Source)

Guild leveling on beta
This feedback is extremely useful guys, please keep it coming. A few things to note:

-XP is currently not being earned for all the dungeons, only Throne of the Tides, Blackrock Caverns and The Stonecore are giving XP. In our next build, ALL dungeons going back to classic will give guild XP. Guild XP gained from bosses is based on the bosses level and is modified by things like the number of players in your party/raid and if the encounter is heroic or not.

-XP is currently not being given out for rated BG's. (obviously, since they are not on beta)

-XP is currently not being given out for Achievements. This will also be implemented in our next build. Note that guild achievements give large amounts of XP at a time and for this reason, they will not respect the daily cap.

-XP for quests if working correctly and most of your leveling has been based off of this alone so far.

-As far as rep gain goes, you need to remember that rep gain is based on your guild xp contribution. As you can see from my notes above, you currently only have one way to contribute, quests. Once our next build goes live and you can earn guild XP from boss kills, this rate should increase. You can expect a similar increase from rated BGs. Before you ask, guild achievements do not grant guild rep since they are earned by the entire guild.

Hope this helps and keep that feedback coming! (Source)

Mage (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Arcane Blast changes in Build 12942
It goes a little beyond that, as the arcane blast debuff only affects arcane blast. Essentially, arcane blast is the highest sustained dps (but unsustainable in terms of mana), followed by arcane barrage, followed by arcane missiles (which is very close to arc barrage in dps, and free of course).

So, from the standpoint of a boss fight arcane is less about a constant rotation, and more about optimizing your mana bar to the fight you're involved in (with a little rng in the mix). (Source)

Combustion
In the next beta build combustion's instant damage is guaranteed to crit. Not only does this mean ignite is guaranteed to be instantly re-applied but also that you have a shot at a hot streak to re-apply pyro. (Source)

Paladin (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Selfless Healer
The damage buff to Selfless Healer is intended to make using Word of Glory less of a dps loss. It's just giving you back some change. It isn't intended to be a mandatory talent, and it would be hard to keep the buff duration up all the time time anyway. (Source)

[...] If you had read a little more before running to the forums (armed with only data-mined information I might add), you would have seen that using Selfless Healer will still be a dps loss. That is the intent. The change is just to make it less of a dps loss than it was previously. Giving up a Templar's Verdict is a lot for a paladin. (Source)

Inquisition
You should use Inquisition when you need to AE tank, since it will boost the damage on Consecrate and the Holy portion of Hammer of the Righteous. You should use Shield of the Righteous on single targets. If you get a proc, you might decide to use Shield of the Righteous even on larger groups. (Source)

Holy Paladin "nerf"
What you call nerfs (and buffs) I call class balancing that is being done during beta. End result will be a working class that can fulfill it's role.
Yeah, pretty much this. Since you don't really have anything to compare it to (in that you aren't seeing your character on live suddenly healing for less than she did the day before), it's hard to get too upset over seeing numbers go down. Some of the numbers are just too high right now. It will all even out before we're done. (Source)

[...] We wanted going to melee to benefit from Seal of Insight to be an option you might consider on some fights. With the previous numbers, you would be stupid to play any other way, which was not our intent.

We were seeing too many paladins use nothing but Holy Shock -> Word of Glory and be effective at doing so. The intent was to give paladins more healing spells to use in Cataclysm, and this mechanic was dominating too much. It will still be quite effective.

The other concerns seem to be about mana and throughput number changes. It's too early to worry about those yet. It will be some time before we feel like the numbers are stable enough. We'll make sure paladins have about the same mana regen as the other healers. (Source)

Does Haste affects Judgement of the Wise/Bold?
Yes. (Source)

Sanctified Wrath (Yep, I screwed up. Rank 3 didn't change = didn't show up on my side. You can call me stupid)
* Sanctified Wrath is now a Tier 4 talent, down from Tier 5. Now increases the critical chance of Hammer of Wrath by 20/40%, down from 25/50% and reduces the cooldown of Avenging Wrath by 20/40 secs, down from 30/60 secs.
I *think* this is a data-mining error. This implies we removed rank 3, which we have not done. It's still 60% / 60 sec at max ranks. (Source)

Seal of Command
It improves the damage of these 3 Seals. The cleave only applies to Righteousness. (Source)

Art of War Change
The overall damage is lower than TV now, which was the goal. (Source)

Retribution Mana management
Ret doesn't need a lot of mana to do the basic rotation. They were getting so much mana that they were doing things like casting Exorcism a lot, using Consecrate on cooldown and using expensive heals. A little of that is okay, but it should be a bonus when you get a lot of mana, not something you do all the time. (Source)

Warrior (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Shield Slam Damage
We need to shift some of the damage from Shield Slam to Devastate and Revenge. It's fine that it hits like a monster, but it shouldn't totally dwarf everything else. (Source)

Heroic Strike in SMF on Beta = Bug
Heroic Strike doesn't interact with either Bloodsurge or Single Minded Fury.

Bloodsurge can only be proc'd by Bloodthirst. SMF only affects Slam (and damage). The latter just has some goofy tooltip bug in your build. (Source)

Haste scaling
Not everything needs to scale with haste (or crit for that matter). They just need to scale well enough that A) the stat isn't viewed as garbage on gear, or B) that Fury (in this case) doesn't blow past Arms at high gear levels.

[...] Haste does not affect Rend ticks. Our general philosophy is that melee dots do not need to be sped up. Melee benefits from haste by generating more resources. Thus, there should be no Taste for Blood losses with haste. Rend can crit however.

Since I can probably guess the question that will get asked next, Slam also won't scale with haste. However, we have changed Blood Frenzy from being passive haste to a chance that your autoattacks will generate extra rage. This should help Arms scale with haste a little better, as well as give Arms a slightly less predictable rage income (in the way that crit used to deliver, but without the crit scaling problems).

We're not worried about Heroic Strike ever beating Slam. If that happens, it's just a tuning problem easily solved.

[...] We want haste to apply to as close to 100% of your damage as possible. For casters it always applied to cast time spells. Now it also applies to dots. For melee, it improves your auto attack damage but also grants you more resources, therefore improving your special attacks as well. (Source)

Cataclysm Zone Q&A: Ashenvale
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)

Q. What was the original concept for the zone?
A. The concept for Ashenvale was to show the effects of the Cataclysm while taking the opportunity to streamline the zone's level design. There were areas of Ashenvale that were pretty unfriendly in terms of accessibility and quest flow. The level designers and quest designers worked together to alleviate the problem areas and highlight the big changes.

Q. Who will be using this zone (what levels/factions)?
A. Both Horde and Alliance players, roughly from levels 20–25. We anticipate that this will be a well-traveled zone in terms of general player flow.

Q. Without giving up any spoilers, what's the general storyline for this zone? How has it changed from the original design?
A. Among other catastrophes, an enormous volcano has erupted in central Ashenvale. As the night elves struggle to deal with the chaos caused by the Cataclysm, the Horde is seizing what it perceives to be a golden opportunity. Garrosh Hellscream's forces are now bearing down upon the night elves and have overtaken several key positions that once served as Alliance strongholds. There is a definite feeling that the balance of power in this region now teeters on a goblin tripwire….

These changes also mean that Horde players will have much more to do in Ashenvale.

Q. What do you think is the most exciting new feature of the zone?
A. Visually, it has to be the volcano. It's stunning, and it provides a great landmark in a place otherwise known for its dense forest. Thematically, the tension present in the zone gives it a whole new feel. The Horde is barricaded inside the walls of Splintertree Post under a massive assault by the night elves and their allies. Meanwhile, Astranaar is desperately fighting off waves of Hellscream's forces. Practically everywhere you go in Ashenvale, it's impossible to escape the fact that it has become a warzone.

Q.What goes into redesigning a zone like this?
A. A bit more than meets the eye, we think. Ashenvale is deceptively large, and previously there were many issues in terms of quest flow and Horde/Alliance content balance. Soon after we rolled up our sleeves and broke ground, we realized that our work was cut out for us. There were numerous quests we wanted to keep, but there were also a great many that no longer fit or didn't play out efficiently. We also needed to create a variety of new quests, especially ones "For the Horde"™.

Q. What was the most challenging aspect about implementing these changes?
A. It can actually be a bit tougher to come in and "do surgery" to an existing zone than it is to completely gut it and start from scratch. Given our ambitious time constraints, trying to determine what stays, what goes, and what other changes to make is certainly a challenge.

Q. What should players do or go see first?
A. Horde players should visit the Mor'shan Rampart first. There's a new Horde contingent there who is fighting hard to make sure that no night elves escape Hellscream's onslaught -- not that they'd make it far into the Northern Barrens! Alliance players who come down from Darkshore will want to help defend Maestra's Post and Astranaar as both settlements struggle to keep from falling under Hellscream's control.

Q. Who seems to have the upper hand in the zone: the Horde, the Alliance, or the elementals?
A. The Horde and the Alliance are throwing themselves at each other on many fronts; neither has a clear upper hand here. The elementals in Ashenvale are a minor nuisance in comparison to the faction struggle.

Q. Should we expect any changes within Blackfathom Deeps?
A. There are no significant changes planned for Blackfathom Deeps at this time.

Q.What has happened to Silverwind Refuge?
A. The Horde has happened!

Q. What has changed the most: the storyline or the terrain?
A. The amount of change has been pretty equal between storyline and terrain. The terrain is much less frustrating than before, and the visual results of the Cataclysm tell the story as much as the quests do. Story-wise, the theme hasn't changed so much as its intensity has.

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