World of Warcraft News and Raiding Strategies RSS Feed

by Published on 2016-05-13 02:46 PM

Firebird Infinite Archon Speed Guide & Gameplay Tips

Notable Player Decks for the Europe Spring Preliminary 2016

May 12th PTR Balance Update

Overwatch Beta - 9.7 Million Players!

Warcraft Movie Clips
Movie clips were released yesterday, but NBC has been blocking them in most countries.



Warcraft Movie - Press Set Tour
Duncan Jones gave a tour of the area created for press events today.



Legion - Quest Parchment
The Horde version of the updated quest parchment (see Alliance here) was added in a recent build.



Poll - Beta Access
Are you playing the Legion Beta?



Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Character Copy is Disabled
Please note that Character Copy is currently disabled in Beta builds. The button is currently not grayed out, but trying to copy account data will fail.

We'll announce when Character Copy is enabled. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Premade Characters in Legion Beta
Right now the initial focus of the Beta test will be on stress testing the Legion starting experience, as well as collecting feedback regarding the levelling experience as a whole, so there will no level 110 premades to begin with. That is to say, a very real part of this test is how our content and servers handle this surge of people in a few locations. Even if there are issues, know that highlighting those issues now is very important and useful to Legion's development!

So if you crash the servers or break content in new and unique ways please take pride in that and we'll fix the issues as fast as we can.

Once the scope of testing shifts to other aspects of the expansion, then additional types of premades might be introduced to allow further focused testing. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

PvP Realm and Beta
I like this a lot. Consider forcing 3s too when skirms come about, I think 2v2 double dps battles give a bad impression of the pacing and excluded a lot of specs from real testing (games are almost always over right after or during offensive & defensive CDs).
This is simply due to the number of healers queuing. If there were enough healers, the matches would be all 3s. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Priest (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator / Artifact Calculator / PvP Talent Calculator)
Shadow Priest -- Legion Beta Feedback
In an upcoming build, Shadow Word: Death will generate 10 Insanity always. Also, it will have a hidden 1 second grace period during which it will grant the added 20 if the target dies. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Legion Beta Known Issues - 5/12/2016
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Greetings friends!

Welcome to the Legion Beta. Please find below, a list of issues that we're aware of and plan to have fixed in future patches. Please note that this list is not a complete snapshot of issues that we're aware of and working on, but issues that we believe will most impact players at this point in time. Thank you for helping us make Legion a positive and entertaining experience for all!

General:
  • Players are unable to send mail.
  • Players may be kicked off of the Zeppelin from Grom'gol Base Camp to Orgrimmar and re-spawned in Kalimdor.

Player Character Models:
  • The tattoo color for demon hunters can be changed at the barber shop to green but it can't be changed back.
  • Pistols will remain holstered during shoot animations for Pandaren Male and Female player character models.

Creatures and Spawning:
  • Lighting is not being applied uniformly on NPCs in certain locations causing some creatures or parts of the creature to appear grey.
  • Demon Hunter faces can experience texture issues when cycling through tattoo customization options.
  • Standing from a sleeping position with an Orc Female will cause your client to crash.
  • Rothoof Defiler is not visible on the Low Shadow Quality setting due to the shader cosmetic effect present.
  • Aquaos the Unleashed is using player spells.

Battlegrounds, Arenas, PvP and Abilities:
  • Battlegrounds and Arenas can fail to load assets.
  • Hunter - The area trigger created by Windburst cannot be seen when the player's Graphics settings are set to 3 or less.
  • Shaman - Sundering has display issues when cast against walled terrain or building WMOs.
  • Druid - Barkskin is causing graphical issues with all the different Bear Models.
  • Rogue - Grappling Hook lacks a spell visual when cast.
  • Paladin - The Lawful Words buff from the Item - T17 Holy 2P Bonus isn't consumed when casting Flash of Light despite the tooltip information.
  • Bursting Sores lacks a spell graphic when triggered from Festering Wound.

Artifacts and Artifact Questlines:
  • Shaman - Players who pursue the restoration artifact after the elemental artifact will be roadblocked at the end of the quest "Azshara's Power".
  • Monk - Players may be unable to loot Fu Zan, the Wanderer's Companion at the end of the Brewmaster Artifact Scenario "The Trial of the Jade Serpent".
  • Lore books are not interactable once a player earns their first Artifact Knowledge point unless they relog.

Quests:
  • Two versions of Jace Darkweaver are visible in Stormwind Keep after turning in the quest "Demons Among Us".
  • The transport never arrives during the Alliance side version of "Call of Duty", preventing completion of the quest.
  • Abandoning the quest "Blood of Our Enemy" after completing any of the associated missions "Blood of Our Enemy" prevents future quest completion.
  • Quest bangs that display on multiple submaps do not display a z-axis indicator.
  • Champion acquisition quest bangs do not properly clean up after associated quest completion.
  • During the quest "The Cycle Continues", party members do not share quest credit when they use Dream Seeds.
  • The Nightmare Creep does not properly display a visual effect during the quest "Cleaning Up"
  • Abandoning the quest "When There's a Will, There's a Way" after completing an associated mission prevents future quest completion.
  • Abandoning the quest "Following In His Footsteps" after completing the associated missions "Archmage Vargoth's Travels: The Nightborne Vault" prevents future quest completion.
  • A "You don't meet the requirements for that quest" error occurs after turning in "The Return of Twilight"
  • Abandoning the quest "Ancient Magic" after completing the associated mission "Ancient Magic" prevents future quest completion.
  • The quest "Unseen Protection" cannot be completed if abandoned and reacquired after it reaches the "Ready to Turn in State".
  • Baron Scaldius does not reset after abandoning the quest "The Firelord's Command" forcing players to reset the instance.
  • The quest "Return to the Firelands" cannot be completed if abandoned and reacquired after it reaches the "Ready to Turn in State".
  • Abandoning the quest "Mission: Investigating Deepholm" after completing the associated mission "Investigating Deepholm" prevents future quest completion.
  • The Deepholm Portal despawns after completing "A Promise of Earth".
  • Interacting with the Earth Giant NPCs for the "Unleashing the Elements" quest does not share quest credit with party members.
  • Abandoning the quest "Enemies of Air" after completing any of the associated missions "Thunderaan's Enemies" prevents future quest completion.
  • The 'Farseer' title isn't rewarded after completing "The Brand of Damnation"
  • The quest "Rise, Champions" does not have a quest beacon poi indicating it is available.
  • Abandoning the quest "Mission: Elemental Diplomacy" after completing the associated mission "Elemental Diplomacy" prevents future quest completion.
  • "A Summons From Moonglade" lacks a quest bang on the world map.

Technical:
  • Mac - Logging into the world can cause a lua error to occur.
  • Game tooltips sometimes get stuck in a state where they only remain on screen for a fraction of a second.
  • Mac - There is a rendering issue while Outline Mode is enabled in Outland Areas.

Beta Test Information
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
We've put together a handy infographic to highlight many of the Legion beta features and flow of content starting with the experience in the Broken Shore and running through the Emerald Nightmare Raid dungeon.


Where will your journey take you?

Overwatch - Animated Short Incoming: "Dragons"
Another Overwatch animated short is on the way!
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)
With every death comes honor. With honor, redemption.

Discover the story behind one of Overwatch’s biggest rivalries in our third animated short: Dragons.

"Dragons" explores the history of conflict between the scions of the Shimada clan: Hanzo and Genji. In this episode, we follow Hanzo as he returns to the siblings' family home in Hanamura once again to seek redemption . . . only this time, he finds himself confronted by the ghosts of the past.


Ready your blade: "Dragons" premieres right here on PlayOverwatch.com on May 16 at 10:00 a.m. PT!

Overwatch Comic - Symmetra
Another Overwatch comic has been released.



Overwatch is Blizzard’s Biggest Open Beta Ever with 9.7 Million Global Players
Lots of players gave Overwatch a try during the open beta, with almost 10 million signing up to play 37 million matches over 81 million hours.
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Blizzard Entertainment today announced that more than 9.7 million players around the world played its upcoming team-based shooter Overwatch® during the Open Beta for PlayStation®4 computer entertainment system, Xbox One, and Windows® PC, making it Blizzard’s biggest open beta ever. By the time the Open Beta came to a close on May 10, participants had joined forces for more than 4.9 billion minutes (over 81 million hours) across more than 37 million matches of intense competitive action, incredible teamwork, and all-out fun.

“We're thrilled that such an incredible number of players from around the globe got a chance to check out Overwatch during the Open Beta,” said Mike Morhaime, CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment. “Our mission was to make sure as many console and PC gamers as possible could experience the full game ahead of its launch—the response was overwhelming, and we hope that everyone had a blast.”

In Overwatch, players choose from a diverse cast of 21 heroes—each with their own unique arsenal of extraordinary weapons and incredible abilities—and team up to complete objectives on battlefields set in locations around the globe. Blizzard’s first-person shooter will arrive in stores on Windows PC, PlayStation 4 computer entertainment system, and Xbox One starting May 24. Heroes from around the world can join the coming conflict by pre-purchasing Overwatch today at www.playoverwatch.com/buy.

Overwatch will be available in English, Latin American Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, German, European Spanish, French, Italian, Polish, Russian, Korean (PC only), Japanese (PC and PS4™ system only), and traditional and simplified Chinese (PC only). Overwatch has been rated T for Teen by the ESRB.

Activision Blizzard Media Networks Announces Esports Broadcast Network
You may remember that Activision Blizzard acquired MLG earlier this year. Now we know a little bit more about what they are doing with it.
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)
Today at the IAB Digital Content NewFronts 2016, Activision Blizzard Media Networks (ABMN), a division of Activision Blizzard, Inc. (Nasdaq: ATVI), announced the launch of new content, broadcast experiences and distribution partnerships for its MLG.tv streaming platform.

MLG.tv debuted its Enhanced Viewing Experience (EVE) at the event, a High-Definition video stream with a built-in algorithmic system that provides viewers with match statistics, up-to-the-minute leaderboards and situational insights based on the competition they are watching.

Steve Bornstein, Chairman of ABMN and former CEO of ESPN, took the stage to introduce the network’s host, veteran broadcaster and retired professional gamer Chris Puckett. As host of MLG.tv’s daily ESR broadcast, Puckett will produce up-to-the-minute premium highlights, interviews and news segments for a new generation of sports fans.

“We’re building a network dedicated to the thrill of competition and the passion of the fans,” said Bornstein. “MLG.tv will play a defining role in realizing the full potential of this audience by creating meaningful, memorable and shareable content.”

“Esports is a cultural phenomenon at its tipping point, and we’re excited to work with the IAB to bring this message directly to advertisers as part of the 2016 Digital Content NewFronts,” said Mike Sepso, Senior Vice President of ABMN. “The size of our digital network, coupled with our insights into this audience’s viewing habits, put us in a unique position to educate the advertising industry on how to safely target these viewers and reach them on their platform of choice.”

ABMN will launch this content and more during the MLG Anaheim Open, a two-day Call of Duty®: Black Ops III tournament set to kick off on June 10, 2016. The MLG Anaheim Open will also be the inaugural event as part of a deeper collaboration with Facebook. The collaboration will allow MLG.tv to broadcast live competitions and deliver ESR content to the 1.6 billion people on Facebook.

“Esports is an exciting space and continues to be a growing priority for us,” said Dan Reed, Head of Global Sports Partnerships for Facebook. “With over 1.6 billion people on the platform and a growing suite of VOD and live streaming products that partners can use to increase engagement, Facebook is uniquely positioned to help esports fans connect around exciting moments and great esports content. We’re thrilled to be working with Activision Blizzard Media Networks, a leader in esports, to help fans enjoy and share a variety of exciting new formats and programming on our platform.”

ABMN’s NewFronts presentation opened with a video showcasing the division’s record-breaking live championship held last month at Nationwide Arena. Sepso and Puckett were joined by Josh Cella, ABMN’s Head of Sales, to present the new content and advertising opportunities to a packed house at the PlayStation Theater in Times Square.

Final Boss - Restoration Druid Spec Preview
Final Boss is back with a second round of spec previews.

by Published on 2016-05-12 01:30 AM

Update (2:10 PM EDT): All of the beta invites for this wave have been sent out!

Suramar Preview, Movie Review, PvP Realm and Beta, Expensive Items, Guardian Preview

Legion Beta Patch Notes
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Welcome to the World of Warcraft Legion Beta! This is an early look at the patch notes for the upcoming World of Warcraft expansion: Legion. If you’d like to participate in the testing process, be sure to opt-in to future beta tests from our Beta Profile page; check the box next to the games you're interested in testing.

Beta Reminder: Content in the Legion Beta Test are still in-development and details may be subject to change before release of the live game. Not all of the content listed may be available for testing or may only be available during a limited testing windows during the Beta. Keep an eye on the Beta forums for more information when specific tests may be taking place.

New Hero Class: Demon Hunter
Dominate your foes as a Demon Hunter, an elven outcast shunned for daring to wield the terrible powers of demons in order to combat the Legion. Exhibiting superior mobility, great martial prowess, and a preternatural ability to detect demons. Demon Hunters can tap into forbidden powers at times of dire need, metamorphosing into terrifying demonic forms. Demon Hunters may choose between two specializations:

  • Havoc: This damage-dealing specialization allows you to demolish any who stand in your way with fiery demonic attacks that emphasize rapid melee strikes and battlefield mobility.
  • Vengeance: This tanking specialization allows you to go toe-to-toe with even the most powerful demons, withstanding massive punishment by channeling the pain of battle and the souls of your enemies.

New Starting Experience for Demon Hunters
  • Start your journey as a member of Illidan’s most elite disciples, an Illidari. Venture out from the Black Temple to lead an assault on the Legion world of Mardum in a desperate attempt to recover the key to defeating the Legion, even as the heroes of Azeroth march against the Black Temple and Illidan.

Level Cap Increased to 110
  • Level cap for characters has been increased to 110.

New Continent: The Broken Isles
Brave the epicenter of the demon invasion—the Broken Isles, a land rich with ancient wonders. Explore lush forests, colossal mountain ranges, storm swept cliffs, and night elven cities older than human civilization. But beyond the Legion’s marauding army, native dangers lurk here too: twisted satyrs, savage drogbar, and cursed Kvaldir are but a few of the danger’s awoken by the return of the Burning Legion.
Explore the Broken Isles with areas such as:
  • Azsuna
  • Val’sharah
  • Highmountain
  • Stormheim
  • Suramar

Wield Powerful Artifacts
Wield weapons of legend against the Burning Legion. Set out on quests to claim the myth-forged artifact weapons for your class, then grow their power as you continue their legend. Your choices will change their abilities, appearances, and carry them to new heights of power. Fashion your artifacts into the perfect instrument of battle for your specialization, and guide your faction in its most desperate hour.


Class Halls and Champions
Claim a Class Hall unique to your class. Recruit champions and armies into your order to send on missions and fight along your side on the Broken Isles.

Missions and Champions
  • Class Campaigns: Unlock an epic class-specific story that takes your character through a variety of content in the expansion as you seek out new champions to join your order in the fight against the Legion.
  • Combat Allies: Call upon mighty champions to assist you in combat either as bodyguards or through powerful call-down abilities.
  • Order Advancement: Research improvements to your armies and champions as well as personal, class-themed perks.

New Dungeons
Ten new dungeons are available in Normal, Heroic, and Mythic difficulties.

New Raids
Two new raids to challenge the mightiest heroes of Azeroth as you try to combat the Legion invasion and the effects it’s had on the native inhabitants of the Broken Isles.
  • The Emerald Nightmare
  • The Nighthold

New World Bosses
  • Challenge yourself against ten new deadly world bosses located throughout the Broken Isles.

World Scaling
  • Forge your own path through The Broken Isles. Level-up zones no longer have level ranges and instead creatures, foes, and rewards scale to your character level allowing you to play through those zones and their dungeons at any level. Zone and dungeon content will still be both challenging and rewarding at any level and allows you to play with friends seamlessly even if your levels are far apart. The max-level zone of Suramar awaits adventurers at the end of their journey.

World Quests
  • World Quests send players out on a variety of quests such as defeating world bosses, world PvP, special dungeon activities, crafting for a profession, story-driven content and more.
  • World Quests become available for characters that reach level 110 and are displayed on the map to see what's available in each zone.
  • World Quests rotate throughout the day and over longer periods of time as well.
  • Emissary quests become available upon reaching level 110 as well. Emissary quests are a daily call for help from a specific faction in Legion.
  • Completing missions in support of a faction from which you have an emissary quest awards a lucrative cache of loot.

Revamped PvP Progression and Honor System
  • Honor Points and Conquest Points have been removed as a currency. At level 110 players now receive Honor for completing PvP objectives or scoring Honorable Kills. Additionally, players at all levels who complete PvP battlegrounds are awarded a cache that can contain equipment, gold, and transmogrification tokens appropriate for their level along with artifact experience once they’ve obtained their artifact weapon.
  • Earning Honor increases your Honor Level. Increasing your Honor level unlocks Honor Talents which can provide passive bonuses and new abilities that are enabled whenever players engage in PvP combat (including out in the world).
  • Players at Honor Level 50 can receive a special reward (a mount, a title, a pet, or a toy) and can Prestige. Electing to Prestige will increase the player's Prestige Level by 1, unlock a special PvP badge, and reset their Honor Level.
  • Items that were purchased using Honor or Conquest are now available for purchase with Marks of Honor that can be earned from Battlegrounds, Arenas, and Skirmishes.
  • Learn more about upcoming PvP changes in our Legion PvP Preview.

Equalized PvP Gear
  • Gear has been normalized in PvP combat. Characters entering a Skirmish Arena, Battleground, Rated Arena, Rated Battleground, or Ashran now receive an aura called Principles of War.
  • Principles of War removes all stats gained from gear (Strength, Stamina, Haste, etc.), disables gear related bonuses (like trinket effects and set bonuses), and gives the character stats based on their specializations, and increases based on overall item level. The goal is to provide a much more finely tuned and balanced PvP experience.

Arenas
  • The pennant attached to the back of characters now changes its appearance based on the player’s best rating in the Arena bracket.

Battlegrounds
  • Characters below level 110 winning a Battleground are now awarded Crates of Battlefield Goods. The crate contains a piece of armor appropriate for the character’s level and specialization with a chance for the crate to contain additional rewards such as weapons or relics.

New Transmogrification Collections System: Appearances
  • New Collection tab: Appearances
  • Unlock new appearances by collecting Soulbound weapons and armor your character can equip.
  • Unlocked appearances are account-wide and usable for transmogrification by other characters that can equip the item.
  • When first logging into a character after Patch 7.0, the appearances of appropriate items in your bags, bank, and Void Storage are learned automatically. Additional appearances will be unlocked based on previously-completed quests.
  • Transmogrifiers located in most major cities have been improved with additional features.
    • Got a look that you like? Save the entire transmogrification set as an outfit. Create and swap between outfits at the Transmogrifier.
    • Additionally, transmogrifications can now be associated with your current specialization. Your outfit automatically changes when switching specializations if you so desire.
    • Added a new option to hide shoulders.
    • The option to hide helmets, cloaks, and shoulders has been moved into the transmogrification system.

New Boosted Character Experience

New Hero Class: Demon Hunter
  • Newly boosted characters will receive a lesson on the basics of how to play their new class, as they embark on an airship heading towards the Broken Shore.

Class Trials
  • Try out a new level 100 character before consuming a Boost with the new Class Trials! Class Trials allows a player to create a new level 100 character, learn how to play the class, and get to experience what it feels like to play the class and their artifact weapon.
  • At the end of the trial experience the character is saved but locked. Players can use a character Boost to unlock the character and keep the character permanently.

Raids and Dungeons

Mythic Dungeons and Keystones
  • Mythic difficulty is available for all Legion dungeons. Players who complete a Mythic dungeon may earn a Mythic Keystone pointing to a random Legion dungeon, enabling access to progressively more challenging levels of difficulty, with commensurate rewards.
  • Completing a Mythic Keystone dungeon within the specified time limit awards a higher-level Keystone, pointing to a new random Legion dungeon, and allowing its holder to access an even higher difficulty and reward level.
  • At higher Mythic levels, random modifiers are introduced, transforming the rules of the dungeon and the way you play to provide a dynamic experience.
  • At the beginning of each weekly instance reset period, players receive a special reward based on the highest Mythic level completed in the prior week.

Legacy
  • Ruins of Ahn’Qiraj now resets daily instead of every 3 days.

Items and Itemization

Itemization
  • In an effort to reduce the amount of gear swapping between specializations, the following changes have been made.
  • Multistrike has been removed. Items that had multistrike have had it replaced with another secondary stat.
  • Trinkets obtained from Raids, PvP, and world drops in Warlords were overtuned and have been brought back to intended power levels.
  • Set bonuses for item sets from expansions prior to Warlords of Draenor have been deactivated, though the text describing their former function still remains.

Legendary Items
  • Legendary items drop from places all throughout Legion. In addition to stats, these items confer powerful effects and modify abilities. Only a limited number of them can be equipped at a time.
  • Check out the new Loot tab in the Dungeon Journal to see which Legendary items are out there for you!

Character Changes

Specialization System Changes
  • Characters can now change between any of their specializations at most any time for a progressive gold cost. Action bar configurations are saved for each specialization. As a result, Dual Specialization has been removed.
  • Characters can queue up as any role that is available to their class and will automatically switch to the suitable specialization when entering the Dungeon, Raid, Battleground, or Arena without any gold cost. For example, a paladin might be questing as Retribution but queue up in Dungeon Finder as a Tank. When the paladin enters the dungeon, they will automatically switch to Protection.

Updates to Combat Visuals and Audio
  • Updated and improved on the animations, visual effects, and audio on core combat interactions like auto-attacks as well as many melee class abilities.

Talent System Changes
  • Players are now able to switch talents while out of combat without the need for reagents.

Glyph System Changes
  • The Glyph panel has been removed from the game. Some minor glyphs that had a cosmetic effect that does not apply to a specific spell have been converted into cosmetic items that provide the same effects as before.
  • Some minor glyphs that made cosmetic alterations to a specific spell have been added to the spell itself in the spellbook.

Draenor Perks Removed
  • Draenor Perks have been removed from the game.

Armor Changes
  • Hunters and Shaman can now equip Mail armor from level 1 (down from level 40).
  • Warriors and Paladins can now equip Plate armor from level 1 (down from level 40).
  • New Mail and Plate reward options have been added to low level quests.

Racial Abilities
Human
  • Every Man for Himself now removes all Stun effects and shares a 30-second cooldown with other items or abilities that have a similar effect.

Class Changes
All classes and specializations have undergone changes to abilities and mechanics. Check out our class preview logs for a better understanding on the thought process behind these changes.

  • Overview
  • Death Knight
  • Druid
  • Hunter
  • Mage
  • Monk
  • Paladin
  • Priest
  • Rogue
  • Shaman
  • Warlock
  • Warrior

Collections

Toy Box
  • A number of items with novel effects have been converted for inclusion in the Toy Box.
  • Orb of Deception now lets the character retain features like armor that’s worn when transforming.
  • New toy: Soft Foam Sword, sold by Jepetto Joybuzz. The toy mortally wounds (but does not kill) an enemy of trivial difficulty.

Professions
  • Increase profession skills to an increased cap of 800.
  • Hundreds of new recipes and patterns have been added.
  • Profession content is more closely tied to the world. Many of recipes will be learned by completing quests, finding hidden trainers, and going on adventures out in the Broken Isles.
  • Recipes can now have multiple ranks. As you become more skilled in your profession, you will learn to craft or gather more efficiently.
  • Equipment limits on the amount of crafted gear that can be worn have been removed.
  • The Obliterum Forge, unlocked with a questline at level 110, will allow players to destroy their crafted gear and obtain Obliterum. Obliterum, in turn, can be used to make crafted gear more powerful.

Inscription
  • Major glyphs, along with many minor glyphs, have been converted or removed from the game.
  • Scribes can now craft Vantus Runes, a consumable item that allows a player to perform more effectively against one particular raid boss each week.

UI
  • Character nameplates have been reworked and have been upgraded to show class resources. Players may select a larger version of these nameplates from within the Interface Options menu.
  • Enemy nameplates now provide additional information on status effects.
  • Added class resource bars that display directly underneath your character.
  • The character sheet has been trimmed down, though fully verbose stats are still available via the API.
  • Interface options have changed and been further streamlined.
  • Tab targeting logic has been reworked, and should now behave in a more consistent and predictable manner.
  • A buff icon has been added to make it easier to tell when a character has XP gain disabled.

Account
  • The maximum amount of gold that can be held at once has been increased to 9,999,999 gold. Guild bank maximum has also been increased to 9,999,999 gold.
  • Maximum number of characters on a realm has increased to 12.

Graphics Engine
  • Maximum draw distance has been extended greatly for Legion content.
  • 5 additional levels of graphics presets have been added with 3 above the previous ‘Ultra’ setting.
  • More advanced rendering techniques for fog have been added.
  • Modern techniques for rendering color and other post-effects have been added.

World of Warcraft: Legion Beta Testing Begins Soon!
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
The World of Warcraft: Legion beta test begins soon! Over the course of the test, we’ll be inviting opt-in beta testers, community veterans, press, fansites, and friends and family to check out the upcoming expansion and give us feedback.

The Legion beta test includes the new Demon Hunter class, the starting experience for the Broken Isles, the new level-up and max-level zones, the new Artifact system, and much more. Beta testers will be able to create characters using level 100 templates, so they’ll be primed and ready to explore the newest content. Be sure to check out the beta patch notes for more details on what to expect.

There’s no NDA (non-disclosure agreement) for the Legion beta test, so those invited to play are free to discuss their experiences as well as take screenshots, share videos, and stream game content. Please keep in mind that the expansion is still in development—we’ll be making changes to the game as the beta evolves, and what you’ll see during the beta test is not necessarily representative of the final game.

Players selected to participate in the beta test will receive an email invitation directing them to download the beta client directly from the Battle.net desktop app. As always, please be aware of phishing attempts—if you’re unsure whether your invitation is legitimate, please log in to your Battle.net account to verify that there is a Legion beta license attached (under Your Game Accounts).

Getting Started
  1. If you’ve been selected to participate in the beta test, your Battle.net account will already be flagged for access.
  2. Make sure your graphics drivers are up to date.
  3. Run the Battle.net desktop app—it may need to update itself if you haven’t run it recently. If you don’t have the app installed, get started here.
  4. Once Battle.net is installed and updated, select World of Warcraft from the list of games on the left.
  5. In the Region/Account drop-down menu above the Play button, choose Beta: Legion (listed under In Development), then click Install.
  6. Allow installation to complete, and click Play.

Once you’ve launched the game, you can start your adventure in Legion by creating a new character using the built-in level 100 templates. Note that the game may automatically bring you to the standard character-creation process—you’ll need to cancel that and use the Legion Beta template option to create a character instead, located near the Enter World button.

Providing Feedback
We’d love to hear about your experiences in Legion, so once you’ve had a chance to play, please send us your feedback.

  • To submit a bug or offer a suggestion from within the game, go to Game Menu (Escape) > Help > Submit Bug or Submit Suggestion.
  • For crashes, please use the Crash Reporter feature that appears when the client crashes.
  • If you’re getting a wrong version error, please uninstall and reinstall the client.

You can also participate in discussions on the forums by going to http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/ and scrolling down to the beta forums.

How do I opt in?

Once you’ve set up a Battle.net account and have attached at least one Blizzard game, you can choose to opt in to our beta tests from the Beta Profile Settings page. You’ll need to select which games you’d be interested in helping test—make sure the Warcraft option is checked, then click Update Preferences.

Once that’s complete, it’s simply a matter of waiting for an invite.
by Published on 2016-05-11 11:08 PM

Update (9:00 PM EDT): Added behind the scenes footage.

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Chromie Hero Profile, Builds & Talent Calculator, Brawl with the Blues - Chromie Edition

Legion - Suramar Preview
Suramar is the max level zone in the Broken Isle. It was unlocked in recent builds but it still doesn't appear to be complete just yet.





Warcraft Movie Screening and Reviews
Some members of the press saw the Warcraft movie last night, but they are not allowed to talk about it until May 30, several days after the EU release. Thankfully two people on Reddit have already shared their thoughts on the movie!



Warcraft Movie - Behind The Scenes
A little bit of behind the scenes footage from filming was released today!



Warcraft Movie Stills
Another batch of stills went out recently and Collider has them all.







PvP Realm and Beta Launch
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Hello everyone, we recently announced that Legion Beta will be starting later this week. We wanted to give you a heads up that the PvP realm will not be available for the first day of the Beta.

We want to learn as much as we can from the first day of Beta to help improve the launch experience for Legion. So it's important that we focus as many people as we can on that launch content.

Also, when the PvP realm does come up the next day, only battlegrounds will be available. Battlegrounds will only start if a lot of people queue for them, so we're going to focus the PvP queues on them for the beginning of beta.

We'll monitor the queues and bring back Skirmishes once we feel we've gotten some solid testing on battlegrounds.

Thanks again for all of your participation and feedback. We'll see you in Beta!

Legion - Expensive Items on Vendors
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
There are, as people have noticed, a small handful of very expensive items on vendors in Legion. This isn't anything fundamentally new - the original Kirin Tor Signet Ring cost a small fortune in relative terms when it first came out in Wrath, as did the Grand Expedition Yak in Mists.

When it comes to cosmetic items and convenience perks, they vary tremendously by source, both in terms of playstyle and degree of difficulty. Some are widely-earned rewards, some were simply a matter of being around at the right time (e.g. the Onyxian Whelpling), others require tremendous skill (Gladiator mounts, Mythic raid mounts from current content), while others require a combination of persistence and luck (Time-Lost Proto Drake, Elegon's mount, etc.). Some require you to engage in PvP, others require raiding, others require extensive outdoor gameplay, or profession use. And some require a sustained and concerted effort to accumulate a ton of gold.

Besides, think of it as a favor to all the arachnophobes out there - do you really want massive spiders skittering around everywhere?

Just to be clear, I agree that the Mad Merchant isn't going to serve as a very effective gold sink. But that's because he isn't intended to be one in any meaningful sense. Gold sinks, in an MMO economic sense, are primarily things like repair costs, the Auction House tariff, and a range of useful expensive items that still fall within the price range of many guild banks and gold-rich players. In this case, a handful of very wealthy players may dump a large portion of their gold reserves into this one vendor, but that's ultimately a blip in the grand scheme of the WoW economy.

If we wanted to drain as much gold as possible out of the economy using these items, we'd be pricing them differently. If the Blackfang Widow cost 200k, I'd wager that far more than 10x as many would be sold. Inflation is a concern, but that's a battle that will be waged on many other fronts. This is just a crazy merchant. The point of the items is to be ludicrously expensive, just as the point of something like the Time-Lost Proto Drake is to be ludicrously rare (if you think about it, a multi-day respawn that shares a spawn point with a more common variant and has a zone-wide patrol is pretty insane...). Some of the vendor's details may be tweaked, and there's been very good feedback in the thread on the relative attractiveness of the different items, but the 2mil price tag for the mount is not likely to change.

This is starting to sum up the Legion expansion feedback in general. "We appreciate the feedback given, but not a damn thing's gonna change. We're totally listening to you guys though!"
I'm sorry it feels that way. This is going to be a lengthy post that will stray far afield from the topic of expensive vendor items, but there there are at least two major underlying issues here:

First off, there are multiple viewpoints on nearly any topic, as you can see in this thread. If I'd instead posted that we were going to reconsider and massively reduce the prices of the cosmetic items on this vendor, there would be other people feeling like their feedback was ignored. It's exceptionally rare that everyone wants the same thing (despite frequent framing of "no one likes X" or "we want X" when giving feedback). And even then, there is a large silent majority that does not post on forums. If there were actual unanimity regarding a certain issue, we would change our design: For example, early on in Warlords, we changed Group Finder loot from Personal back to Need/Greed until we could iterate on Personal loot further, and the community overwhelmingly told us that was a dumb idea. The change was reverted within 2 days.

Second, almost every facet of WoW is an activity that caters to a minority of the playerbase. That may sound odd at first blush, but it's true. In a sense, that's part of the magic of WoW. It is not a narrow game, but rather one that can be enjoyed in numerous different ways, by people with hugely diverse playstyles. A minority of players raid. A minority of players participate in PvP. A tiny minority touch Mythic raiding. A tiny minority of players do rated PvP. A minority of players have several max-level alts. A minority of players do pet battles, roleplay, list things for sale on the auction house, do Challenge Mode dungeons, and the list goes on. Virtually the only activity that a clear majority of players participate in is questing and level-up dungeons, but even then there's a sizeable group that views those activities as a nuisance that they have to get through in order to reach their preferred endgame.

And yet, taken together, that collection of minority groups literally IS the World of Warcraft.

Perceptions of feedback are further complicated by the fact that, due to the cooperative nature of the game, players tend to make connections with others who favor a similar playstyle. I'm generalizing a bit here, and there are certainly exceptions, but I'd guess that a typical Gladiator-level player probably doesn't have a WoW social group that consists of people who mostly solo-level alts and explore the world. And most small friends-and-family guilds don't spend a lot of time talking to competitive Mythic raiders. So when there's a change, or a feature, that is aimed at a portion of the game that isn't your personal playstyle, it's easy and in fact natural to have the sense that "everyone" dislikes it.

If we decided to focus on a specific playstyle and elevate that portion of audience above the rest, then we could certainly visibly and consistently address clear feedback from that group, but WoW would become a far smaller game in the process.

Another major consequence of this structure is that if we have some special reward (be it a unique mount, a powerful item, a title, etc.) and we choose to associate it with a particular playstyle, almost by definition a majority of player feedback will be against that decision. For example, if an awesome mount comes exclusively from PvP, the majority of players who don't participate in PvP yet desire the mount would prefer that it were otherwise. If our goal were to please a majority, we would likely have to make a version of that mount also available through raiding, and one also available through outdoor questing and reputation, at the very least. But doing that would dilute the reward itself. Ultimately, the approach we take is usually to tailor different content and rewards that can feel special to different groups, rather than trying to come up with a lowest common denominator that isn't special to anyone.

In closing, I know it often can seem like we don't listen. We are - just to many, many different voices. And it may be that a given change, feature, or reward is simply aimed at a different portion of the playerbase. Or we could be wrong and we haven't realized it yet. So please, keep talking.

Just a simple question that they won't answer: Will the mount be unique or will it show up reskinned elsewhere? If it's unique, I'll buy it. If it's not, I won't. What conceivable reason could they have to not answer something so simple? So frustrating.
The only reason is that it's difficult to make absolute "never"-type statements with confidence. We have no plans to offer a recolor or highly-similar version of the Widow, as we agree that it would undermine the value of the mount (highly debatable though it may be) if there were easily-obtainable variants.

But in the distant future? Who knows. Maybe some day we make a spider expansion, all about spiders, complete with a playable arachnid race (this is where I alienate all the arachnophobes who were grateful for my first post in this thread), and there are spider mounts everywhere. So I can't say "never."

But in general, we feel that we've diluted the impact of some of our mounts by offering numerous variants of the same base creature. It's appropriate for some creatures, especially where it feels like a prominent part of the natural fauna of a new continent (e.g. all the various Proto-Drakes in Wrath, or Cloud Serpents in Mists), but when something is unusual we should try to keep it that way. A mount like the Ratstallion should also remain unique for the foreseeable future.

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Classes
Brewmasters: Wall of text crits you for 9001.But you Ironskinned, then Purified it, so you survive. (Celestalon)
I really wish you'd post things like this for every spec, but that's unreasonable. But it would probably stop shadow priests >
Aye, I wish we had time to give more attention and have more discussion with every spec, but it's not really feasible. (Celestalon)
now you are telling people (mythic raiders at that) how to play the class they have been maining for years? Icing on the cake.
When we make significant changes to, there's a new learning process for even the most experienced players to go through. (Celestalon)

Or maybe more to the point; as healers, should we be letting BMs drop low instead of trying to obsessively keep them above 80%?
We're aiming for a world where ALL tanks, regardless of class, who are at 80% are viewed as not an emergency. (Celestalon)
If your tank is at 80%, I'd hope that you look at that as "Sweet, I'll let HoTs cover that", not "Time to Flash Heal them!" (Celestalon)

Paladin (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator / Artifact Calculator / PvP Talent Calculator)
Good morning! Will judgement of light heal players at full health? Will be a lot better if only players at less than full hp
No; we will change this to not spend charges on players with full health. (WarcraftDevs)

PvP
Could you bring back rated arenas to 70/80/85/90 to make the brackets active again?Take out achievements I don't care.
We have no plans to return rating to these brackets. (WarcraftDevs)

Will crit return to do 200% DMG in PvP instead of 150% now that multistrike is gone?
Critical Damage and Critical Heals in PvP combat will continue to deal 150% of normal spell and ability effects. (WarcraftDevs)

Are Tol Barad and Wintergrasp battlegrounds being removed with Legion?
Both Tol Barad and Wintergrasp will remain active in #Legion. (WarcraftDevs)

Misc
Eric turns to the room of quest designers and says he's going to put us in-game. I say "Please don't." (craig_amai)
He puts us in as incompetent NPCs who got captured. And makes a quest to find us and kill us. Such love. (craig_amai)

Starcraft II Sale
The Starcraft II games are on sale!



Final Boss - Guardian Druid Spec Preview
Final Boss is back with a second round of spec previews.

by Published on 2016-05-10 03:54 PM

Update (1:30 PM EDT): SC2 games went on sale this morning.
Update (12:15 AM EDT): Some beta invites are going out. Check your launcher.
Update (4:00 PM EDT): An email went out letting players with Alpha access know why it is disappearing for a few days.
Update: Battletag friend requests went out to the winners of our recent giveaway.

Legion Developer Update
Beta starts Thursday at 2 PM PST / 5 PM EST!


Alpha and Beta
  • At Blizzcon, the team said that beta would start in a couple of weeks, but then they realized that players expect beta to be a polished demo. The current state of Legion then was more like an old-school WoW beta, with 2/3rd of specs unplayable and lots of content and features that weren't implemented. It didn't feel right calling that a beta, so the team called it an alpha and still invited a decent number of people.
  • Legion isn't finished, but the team is polishing, tuning, refining, and listening to feedback right now. All of the big pieces are there, so it is time for beta!
  • The current plan is to take the alpha down over the next day, wipe all of the existing characters, send out a large beta invite wave, and then on Thursday at 2 PM PST / 5 PM EST start beta!
  • Players will be able to do the intro to the Broken Shore and faction specific events in the weeks leading up to Legion's release. After Legion releases, you head to Dalaran and pick up things there.
  • There won't be any character copies in Beta initially.

Order Halls
  • The Garrison was a personal space that involved raising an army and building a base.
  • The Class Order Hall is a shared social space where all players of your class can hang out.
  • You are one of the leaders of your class, helping to guide the Order. You can use the Research Tree to shape the direction you want your Order to follow.
  • The Order Hall exists to serve the other world content in Legion, whereas the Garrison was a standalone feature.
  • Most of the stuff you do in your Order Hall will send you out into the world, coming back to get more things to do.
  • The most common reason you will visit your Order Hall while leveling is to upgrade your Artifact.
  • There are custom class campaign quests that will pop up while you are leveling, giving you a class specific storyline.
  • There is a mission system in the Order Hall, but it is a much smaller system than it was in Warlords.
  • Garrisons had dozens of followers that you could collect, but here you have a handful of champions that you can send out on missions.
  • Order Hall missions are less frequent and have a greater impact than Garrison missions did.
  • Garrison missions became a way to easily get almost anything you wanted to get, competing with actually doing content. Crafting materials, armor, currencies, gold, and other things could be earned by playing the game or by pressing mission buttons. Pushing that button was a really compelling option.
  • Order Hall missions will send your champions out to scout dungeons and raids, having them return with a quest that sends you into the dungeon or raid to defeat a target to get a loot reward.
  • Early on you will be spending your Order Hall Resources on customizing your Class Order tech tree. After that you can spend excess resources on missions.
  • The Order Hall doesn't have a lot of customization like Garrisons. You can customize through your research tree and your artifact.
  • The locations used for Order Halls existed before you came along, the aren't yours to decorate!
  • Each Order has a fixed one time epic story arc with multiple chapters that will unfold over the course of leveling. This is unlocked at your own pace, so everyone won't be hitting the same step at the same time.
  • You may be tracking down a traitor within your own ranks if you are a Mage or trying to raise a new set of Four Horsemen to fight the Legion with as a Death Knight.

World Quests
  • At max level, there is a World Quest system with a fixed state for everyone in your region so that you can quest together.
  • World quests are almost like Garrison Missions for players, giving you a choice of things to go and do rather than a list of things for your followers to do.
  • World quests are not daily quests, they can be available for a few hours up to a few days depending on the reward.
  • The most rewarding World Quests will be around for a few days, so players will have time to complete them.
  • There is a daily Emissary that allows you to earn some reputation and a reward chest if you complete four of their quests.
  • In Mists of Pandaria, there were lots of daily quests that gave you a reason to go out into the world, but the reward structure and daily requirement wasn't great. If you missed a day of quests, you would be behind everyone else.
  • There was also lots of repetition in the Mists of Pandaria daily quests, with players rescuing Lao Softfoot from his cage constantly.
  • World quests provide lots of variety with the hundreds of world quests have been created, so you shouldn't see the same quests constantly.
  • The game shouldn't feel like a daily chore. The Emissary system lets you stack up three days of quests so that you don't fall behind if you miss a day.
  • The Legion reputation rewards are also structured better, nothing like Mists of Pandaria.
  • The outdoor questing areas in Warlords ended up having no real context to why you were there doing things.
  • In Legion, all of the World Quests have a little bit of lore and story that go with them, giving you some context as to why you are there and why you are doing what you are doing.

Leveling
  • The level up experience in class zones is pretty broken right now. It is too easy and not paced well.
  • Leveling has been a little bit neglected over the years, becoming worse in part due to balance changes made to the max level game.
  • If you are doing a Level 3 quest right now, you are one or two shotting things, killing them before they can engage with you. This means you are spending more time running around between objectives than you are actually fighting.
  • The team wants to fix the leveling experience and they have done some via hotfixes already.
  • In Vanilla at lower levels combat times were a little bit too long.
  • The team aims for a 12-15 second combat time against a single enemy, which makes sense at max levels.
  • At lower levels when you literally have one skill, 12 - 15 seconds is too long, but the current few second combat time is too short.
  • The team wants to keep the barrier to entry for new and returning players that want to play with their friends reasonably low. This led to them making leveling through previous expansions faster and faster so that you could catch up to friends quickly.
  • Today the barrier to entry is solved by the Character Boost system. If someone buys the latest expansion, they can boost past all of the older expansions and finish leveling.
  • There isn't a need to rush players through leveling anymore. If you are leveling from 1 to 100 it should be a satisfying and well paced experience.
  • The goal isn't to go back to 13 days played or hundreds of hours of leveling, but you shouldn't be outleveling zones before you finish their story. You shouldn't go and do one dungeon and find that the zone you were leveling in before is no longer relevant to you at all.
  • There is a chance that the flexible zone scaling tech might help solve the leveling problem, expanding the level range of zones, giving you a chance to finish the zone before outleveling it.
  • The game should be a fun and epic experience at every level, but it isn't always that kind of an experience right now.

Ion
  • Ion picked Shaman when he stared playing because he wanted to be a hybrid tank. His friends went Horde, so he couldn't be a Paladin.
  • Looking at the Shaman abilities (Shields, Rockbiter, Earth Shock, Toughness, Improved Shield Block), it made sense to a brand new player at the time! He was able to tank up until Level 30 or so and then Warriors had plate.
  • Suramar and Mythic+ Dungeons are the features Ion is most excited about in Legion.

Demon Hunters and Class / Race Combos
  • There are three awesome cinematics during the Demon Hunter leveling experience that you won't be able to see until the content is live.
  • If the team was ever going to do Demon Hunter during World of Warcraft, this was the perfect expansion for it.
  • In the future Demon Hunters might be able to go out in the world and instruct other races to allow them to become Demon Hunters, but for now it is only elves.
  • There are some race and class combinations that don't make a lot of sense, like a Tauren Rogue.

Artifacts
  • Artifacts are weapons of incredible power with rich history and lore behind them.
  • The team started with well known weapons for Artifacts, doing Ashbringer first.
  • A world where everyone had an identical weapon wouldn't work, so they added color and model variants of the weapons. These models had to feel like the original weapon while being visually distinct.
  • After Ashbringer the team looked at other existing weapons in the lore, as well as coming up with new weapons.
  • Some variations are easy to unlock, but others are from doing well in a certain part of gameplay.
  • If you really want to, you can transmog your Artifact to look like other weapons.

Dungeons
  • Previously, dungeons were exciting and rewarding at the start of an expansion for a month or so, but after that the loot wasn't as good as what you could get from Raid Finder.
  • If you beat a Mythic Dungeon, you get a Keystone that allows you to run the Mythic Dungeon at a higher level.
  • The difficulty and rewards scale up with the level of the Mythic dungeon.
  • The team wanted players to be able to run dungeons for the entire expansion, which means dungeons needed some variation in the gameplay beyond health and damage increases to keep them interesting.
  • Affix modifiers for the keystones change up your experience in the dungeon from week to week.
  • There are 8-10 different Affixes that do things to change the dungeon gameplay, like massively reducing tank threat generation (wait for 3 stacks of Sunder!).
  • Another Affix causes non-boss NPCs to explode and empower nearby enemies when they die.
  • Affixes are fixed for the entire world each week, so there won't be any need to find people with "easier" keystones.
  • The higher level your keystone, the more affixes will be on your keystone and the better your loot will be.
  • This will keep dungeons rewarding for the entire expansion.
  • Mythic+ Dungeons are also an alternative progression path to raiding or even a complement to raiding.
  • Right now in Warlords, there isn't much you can do to progress your character on nights when you aren't raiding, but in Legion you can do Mythic+ dungeons on non-raid nights.
  • There isn't any reachable limit for the keystone level.
  • Keystones are leveled by clearing the dungeon within a time limit. The limit is looser than Challenge Mode dungeons, as the point isn't to race through the dungeons, just complete it at a reasonable rate.
  • Each week you will have a chest in your Order Hall with a reward based on the highest level you cleared last week.
  • This chest also contains a new keystone that is around 70% of the level of your previous best, allowing you to get started at a reasonable level rather than starting from Level 1 again every week.

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