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by Published on 2017-02-26 10:36 PM

Top Decks of the Week for February 26

Patch 7.2 - Priest Class Mounts
Today we are taking a look at the Priest class mount.

Priest Class Mount White Priest Class Mount Gold Priest Class Mount Shadow

Patch 7.2 - Class Changes Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Death Knight (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator / Artifact Calculator / PvP Talent Calculator)
Unholy Death Knight Gold Trait Feedback
The gold trait should be changed in an upcoming PTR build to something that doesn't add Festering Wounds (and therefore resources and GCDs) to the rotation, since Unholy is still a bit swamped. (Official Forums)

Druid (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator / Artifact Calculator / PvP Talent Calculator)
Intimidating Roar
While I am somewhat loath to respond to a thread where 23 of 25 posts are by the same person (and I apologize in advance to my colleagues from Community about this), it turns out that this is being changed in 7.2. Intimidating Roar will root targets rather than snaring them by 50%. We felt the current behavior was inconsistent with the tooltip, and also that the talent shouldn't feel like it adds risk to the ability that isn't present in the untalented version. (Official Forums)

Mage (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator / Artifact Calculator / PvP Talent Calculator)
Frost Mage Feedback
Thanks for the detailed look. We agree there could be some cleanup around proc minutiae and Winter's Chill timing, including getting rid of the possibility of the double Ice Lance.

Few other minor notes:
  • Frozen Touch is slightly underpowered, but we likely have to be careful with it until we do something about the possibility of infinite Thermal Void rotations.
  • Glacial Spike is intended to double-dip crit on the Icicle portion of the damage, but it would be better if it didn't double-dip % damage buffs such as the ones you mentioned.
  • Glacial Eruption should be on PTR soon, but it will be able to Shatter.
(Official Forums)

Rogue (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator / Artifact Calculator / PvP Talent Calculator)
Outlaw discussion: RTB and True Bearing
Overall it would be more ideal if the RTB buffs were closer in value. True Bearing has gradually crept up over the course of the expansion (around the time of Legion launch, I believe Shark Infested Waters was considered best, and they haven't changed much since then). I expect True Bearing climbs in value as the rotation gets faster due to stat increases and other bonuses being added over the course of the expansion, which all feed into the True Bearing positive feedback loop. Simply making it baseline would speed up the spec even further and contribute to the energy flood and other issues that it can have. While the similar effect was passive in Warlords, I'm sure (I haven't dug into this closely) that the Legion spec churns combo points much more rapidly. In any case the Legion version of True Bearing has the added synergy with Marked For Death that heaps even more combo points into the rotation during True Bearing.

Point being, while there's not a specific plan yet for balancing out the different RTB buffs, we agree that it would be better they were more even again. Longer-term, there's something to be said for tweaking the rules/probabilities of RTB in a way that would further reduce the value of rerolling frequently. (Official Forums)

Loaded Dice: New Outlaw Gold Trait Feedback
Sigma already said they will make Loaded Dice give Slice and Dice some sort of buff, we have it in writing.
This should be in the next PTR build. (Official Forums)

Warlock (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator / Artifact Calculator / PvP Talent Calculator)
Affliction Feedback
We do agree that Affliction should feel most at home when it is applying DoTs to multiple targets. With specs like this where the basic mechanics and history of the spec lean towards being strong in one area, there's often a fine line to draw on how it should perform in the other areas (here, single-target damage). It shouldn't feel useless, but should feel like other players may have the advantage there. It's fine for a talent like Malefic Grasp to exist, but this logic probably implies it's slightly stronger than would be ideal. It's good feedback on the preliminary T20 set bonuses that they might push Affliction _away_ from feeling good when multi-dotting, which is something we'd want to avoid.

More broadly and looking ahead to the future, we agree that different specs--especially different specs within a pure DPS class--should have better delineated distinct strengths than they currently have in some cases. That doesn't mean the magnitude of the difference has to be very large (see the "useless" comment above). Especially in a context like single-target DPS, which is the subject of intense analysis and scrutiny, even a few % of difference in DPS is more than enough for players to notice and take seriously as a strength or weakness of a spec. Simply that it should be more clear what the scenario is that each spec has to look forward to as the place where it stands out, such as sustained multi-dotting for Affliction, or situations that allow Destruction to leverage Havoc especially well. (Official Forums)

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Can we have HD skins for old Hippogryph colorations and maybe some tamable snowy or ebon gryphons?
There will be tameable black and white gryphons, but you will have to find them. (Muffinus)
Tome of the Hybrid Beast: Would be cool if this unlocked another "page" of stable slots. Or put it on vendor.
Probably worth noting, Feathermanes include: Gryphons, Hippogriffs, Owlcats, Wolfhawks, and Wyverns (most NYI atm) (Muffinus)
any chance the Corrupted Hippogryph model could be added as a tame? would suit the expansion perfectly
If you can find it (Muffinus)

So the paladin class mount is Rivendare's purified mount but the DKs already got that mount for the four horsemen.
Death Knights obtain the saddle of Rivendare’s mount, but not the mount itself (just like Arthas' saddle doesn't mean Invincible) (Muffinus)

Reflecting on Artifact Power so far in Legion, and discussing upcoming changes: (NA), (EU) (WatcherDev)
This is a clever way of saying that you disagree with player's accounts of their psychology; right or wrong there'll be blowback
No one can contradict someone else's emotions or thoughts. People feel what they feel. We're trying to mitigate the impact. (WatcherDev)

Character / Items
Can you confirm that there is no benefit in repeating the "Touch of a Titan" Quest when having all legs upgraded to 940 ?
Correct. These items will never have a use other than upgrading a 910 Legendary to 940. (WarcraftDevs)

Well we be able to equip more then 2 legendarys? In 7.2 or later?
Not in 7.2. Potentially later, but undecided. (WarcraftDevs)

can't find a clear answer on this. I'm currently prestige (and honor) capped. Will my honor gained pre cap be stored up or be lost?
It is not stored (holinka)

Good to see some changes, could you also fix the bottom pillars of Blade's Edge as they currently ignore LoS
7.2 (holinka)

will honor earned before 7.2 adjust retroactively when the patch goes live (e.g. Rank 5 players boost to Rank 10)?
No. This change does not apply to all prestige levels, only the first 50 honor levels (aka Prestige 0). (holinka)

Pets and Pet Battles
One single pet requires a fully-unlocked Artifact? This doesn't bode well for completionists.
The time from empowerment to 51-point completion isn't as long as you think, don't worry (Muffinus)
So it's not unreasonable for a completionist to knock out all 36 specs as a relatively casual player?
For pet collectors, there are only 4 pets. Keep in mind that each alt/alt spec goes faster, too. (Muffinus)
Oh, so there's not a class pet for each class - just the DK and Monk pets? That makes it a bit easier.
Correct. Some classes get pets, some get multiple colors, some get color-changers, DHs get a Pepe, etc. (Muffinus)

So. Just going to put this out there...I sincerely hope these class pets are not Legion exclusive and will NOT be removed come next expac.
No plans to remove them (Muffinus)

Reputation / Questing
Any plans to lower the requirement for raid quests like Essence of Power for Emerald Nightmare to Raid Finder difficulty?
No. The Balance of Power chain is intended to reward organized raiding. (WarcraftDevs)
only downside is it locks out the entire row of artifact appearences to all bar organized raiders. Includes legion hero & M15
Yeah, and it wasn't something that's indicated by the interface at all :\ Really not a fan of this approach.
We agree that it should have been clearer in-game; Patch 7.2 has some changes that make this more apparent. (WarcraftDevs)
But, to be clear, no plans to change the 2nd through 4th tints from being locked behind the 1st?
Not at this time. (WarcraftDevs)

The mount I've always wanted is _______. (Muffinus)

With flying being added in 7.2, will the violent shaking bug that Thal'kiel does when on a flying mount get fixed?
Generally these are dealt with on a mount by mount basis. If you feel this way about a mount, please tell us! (Muffinus)

FinalBossTV #129 - Exorsus World First Nighthold Interview
This week FinalBossTV talked to Exorsus about their world first.

by Published on 2017-02-25 11:17 PM

PTR Patch Item Functionality Changes and Bug Fixes

Things Just Got Real - Ben Brode and the Axe are Ready for Monday

Patch 7.2 - Death Knight Class Mounts
Today we are taking a look at the Death Knight class mount and the quest to obtain it!

Death Knight Class Mount Green Death Knight Class Mount Blue Death Knight Class Mount Red

Legendary System Clarification - Based on Q&A
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
1) How does the above work in regards to Non-spec-based Legendaries (like Shard of Exodaar for mages, who works for all 3 specs. Does it account for ALL specs, or just the one that it was dropped on?
If a Legendary can drop for your spec, it counts. An easy way to check this is to open the Adventure Guide ingame (Shift-J by default) and click the "Loot" tab without having a dungeon or raid selected. That'll show you which Legendaries are counted for your spec.

2) Very similar to the above, how do items like Prydaz/Sephuz/Kil'jaeden DPS/etc work under this system? Does it count for the spec it dropped on, or for all specs?
Same as above.

3) The PTR has had "Unidentified Legendary" items in its database for a while, and it's been speculated that these were a 'failsafe' for people accidentally getting a legendary in the 'wrong spec' and blowing their accrued Bad Luck Protection -- are these unidentified items still going live, are they going to be scrapped in light of the spec-based droprate/BLP ? If they are going live, is it intended behavior that people could play offspecs with low number of legendaries, or none, get these items quickly (since the first 2 legendaries drop faster), and then swap to their 'main spec' as a way to get a few more legendaries 'quickly' (in comparison to the norm) ?
These were part of an experimental concept that we've since decided not to go ahead with, at least for now. The idea wasn't exactly what you're speculating, but our concerns were similar.

4) How does BLP 'acquisition' work under this new spec-based system? Do I 'build up' BLP for all specs as I play, or only for the one currently set as my Loot Specialization? If it builds for all of them, this has possible unintended consequences, where once I get an item in 1 spec, I know I should swap to the others and get items 'relatively fast' since the BLP is built up a fair bit (assuming it wasn't RNGesus giving you an item very very early on)
This one I'm actually not certain on the answer, but I'll look into it.

So basically if you have utility legendaries you are even more screwed than before because you already have that many legendaries for every spec.
I can see where you're coming from, but I'd make the argument that if you have cross-spec Legendaries and play multiple specs, you're already at an advantage in that they're functional for your other specs. I have the Thunder Focus Tea pants and Soothing Mist shoulders on my Mistweaver; neither of them do anything at all when I play Brewmaster.

I feel like this comes back to a lot of the utility legendarys are still just "bad" some like Prydaz and Sephuz are better. But there are other's like Acherus Drapes and Uther's Guard that remain disappointing as ever to receive. I leveled a DK as a fun alt, got Acherus Drapes as its first legendary, i am tempted to just delete the character and try again if I had gotten prydaz i wouldn't have felt this way as it has far more value. Or i have been considering leveling my warrior and just hoping for better luck. You mentioned this in the QA but please take a close look at all the legendarys (including healer ones). To make sure there aren't so many egregious outliers, i should emphasize this is a much larger problem for healers right now than DPS.
Yep, this is the important point to remember: if a legendary just sucks, then that's the problem we need to fix. Similarly, if your spec sucks without a particular legendary, then that legendary also needs to be fixed to not be so impactful.

Regarding Prydaz, specifically: It's maybe not the most exciting legendary right now, but it's certainly strong. The stats make it a solid, reliable throughput upgrade, and in the immortal words of Sebudai: "It's pretty easy to figure out how much DPS you're doing as a corpse on the ground."

As for Sephuz: it has a weird, but temporary, issue. When you only have one or two legendaries, it sucks that it does nothing on the fights where you can't proc it. No argument there. Eventually, though, you'll have a third legendary, and it opens up for some interesting gameplay, where you swap it on for fights with a lot of dispels, interrupts, or controllable targets, and swap it out for the ones that don't. It's not always useful, but it's really good when it is. That's not a bad thing.

Those seem to be the two that most commonly come up as "bad," but we'll keep discussing the other options as well. I know there's a few tweaks planned to some that haven't yet hit the PTR.

Overall, though, I just wanted to drive home the point that if you're upset at how long it might take you to get your next Legendary because the ones you have are bad, we want to fix that by making the ones you have better.

We.Want.A.Way.To.Target.Spec.Specific.Slot.Specific. BEST IN SLOT.
A) I think your spacebar is broken.

B) You'll be able to do exactly that through the Relinquished gear tokens in Patch 7.2.

Wait, was this a confirmation that we can actually target slots?
Correct. The current plan is that if you purchase a Relinquished token for, say, shoulders, and it gives you a legendary, it gives you legendary shoulders.

Massive wall of caveats here just because I don't want to over-promise:
  • This is PTR. Anything can change at any moment. Many things already have.
  • We don't have a solid handle yet on how long it will take to earn these things, or what the chance of them becoming a legendary will be. We need to be confident that the Broken Shore content itself is stabilized before we can start figuring out things like how quickly you earn Nethershards or how much these tokens cost.
  • Their primary purpose is still as catch-up gear, similar to what was available on the Timeless Isle or Hellfire Peninsula. We don't consider this a "silver bullet" solve to all legendary-related issues, and aren't trying to make it be one. Still, if you just desperately want that one specific legendary, this might be an option worth considering.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Healer Changes in Patch 7.2
After continued discussion, as well as player feedback, we've decided not to go ahead with these changes in Patch 7.2. That includes the Healer change I mentioned earlier, as well as the rest of the changes that the OP mentioned.

We recognize that there's a problem with World PvP right now, and we do want to find ways to make some improvements there, but these changes would have been far too disruptive to balance in instanced PvP. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

World Quest and Emissary Cache Reward Item Level
The rewards from the Emissary Cache and World Quests will scale higher in Patch 7.2. However, players who regularly participate in more organised content, such as raiding or higher level Mythic Keystone dungeons, are still likely to reach a point where Emissary Cache/World Quest rewards are no longer compelling. It's okay to outgrow some content as your character grows stronger. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Monk (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator / Artifact Calculator / PvP Talent Calculator)
Mistweaver Talents
Hello Blizz, listen I really like chi wave, but not at the expense of mistwalk. I enjoy the talent it is good in PVP and is good in PVE (certain circumstances) There are other talents that are not ever used at least by me like (rushing Jade wind, Rising thunder, spirit of the crane) there are several PVP talents that are not used that often either that could be removed (refreshing breeze, healing sphere, way of the crane, fast feet.) Mistwalk is an awesome part of the new monk playstyle don't take that away
This was a primarily PvP-focused change. It wasn't getting much use in PvE (and when it was, that was almost always the wrong choice), and it was giving Mistweavers far too much mobility in PvP, especially in RBGs where it was highly problematic.

We're obviously aware that this change has balance implications, and are prepared to make any additional changes necessary for Mistweaver PvP performance. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Live Developer Q&A Answers (23/02/2017)
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Now that the recent Live Dev Q&A with Ion Hazzikostas has concluded, we have compiled a few brief summaries of his answers to some of the main questions that were asked.

Should you wish to view the Q&A, in full you can find the VOD (in English) at:

Q: Are there any plans to make the Balance of Power skins account wide in the future? If not, can we expect to see further alt catch-up mechanisms?
A: It’s intended to be a per-character reward, so we currently do not plan to make Balance of Power account-wide. That said, we’ve recent increased the droprate of Corrupted Essences significantly in Emerald Nightmare, to the point where it no longer takes several months to finish that step, and instead can be completed in just a few weeks. Droprates in Nighthold are already very high, so alts should be able to catch up very quickly. As the expansion continues, we’ll continue to keep an eye on it and make additional changes, should they become necessary.

Q: What's the reason behind making second trait on relics another layer of RNG?
A: It actually opens up a lot of options for relics to be valuable, compared to the alternative of designating two traits for each relic. If the traits were pre-selected, you’d likely only have one or two relic drops you really wanted, and others would be considered sub-optimal. By randomly assigning the second trait, every relic drop has a chance to have your favorite trait. Note that the second trait will always be throughput-oriented (e.g. it will increase your DPS, healing, or survivability depending on your role), and relics cannot have the same trait twice.

Q: Any plans for reducing the large barrier to spec-swapping presented by Legendaries?
A: Currently, in Patch 7.1.5, your chance to receive a Legendary is based on the total number of Legendaries you’ve already gotten. In Patch 7.2, we’re changing that algorithm to only count Legendaries with bonuses that apply to your spec. So, if you’re a Fire Mage with the Pyroblast bracers and Scorch belt, you’ll have a significantly higher chance to receive a Legendary when your loot specialization is set to Frost than you do currently.

Q: Any plans on buffing underperforming legendaries? Enhancement bracers for example do literally nothing right now.
A: Yes. We’ve already made a couple of changes to Legendary balance in the 7.2 PTR, and more are coming. We feel that one of the major frustrations players often mention regarding the Legendary system – that they haven’t gotten the “right” Legendary and wish theirs were better – is largely due to imbalance in Legendary items. We’re continuing to adjust Legendaries by buffing underpowered ones (and nerfing overpowered ones) in Patch 7.2, as well as future updates.

Q: Are there plans to extend the Artifact Knowledge catch-up in 7.2 to follow the same trend as the compendiums added in 7.1.5, or is that something for a later date?
A: Yes, there will be new compendiums in Patch 7.2. The maximum will allow players who have earned Artifact Knowledge level 40 to immediately grant Artifact Knowledge level 35 to alternate characters.

World Boss Testing - February 23
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
To help test the new Broken Shore world bosses, we've temporarily set the PTR to rotate to a new world boss every 30 minutes. There are three bosses in total. If you'd like to check them out and provide feedback (or even just help us stress test the Broken Shore), please do!

HeroStorm Episode #22 - The Last Laugh
Another episode of HeroStorm has been released.

by Published on 2017-02-23 06:49 PM

Developer Q&A - Ion Hazzikostas
Game Director Ion Hazzikostas answered questions today!

Upcoming Q&A
  • There will be another Q&A in a couple of weeks, focused on PvP with Holinka. There will be an eSports in 2017 announcement after that.

Artifact Appearances
  • The Balance of Power skins will not be made account wide. They are weapon and character specific cosmetic rewards that reflect your accomplishments on that character. The team is looking at the steps and how much effort is required.
  • Hidden appearances from raid and dungeon bosses now have bad luck protection as of Patch 7.1.5.
  • Artifact appearances are just a cosmetic unlock, so being as alt friendly isn't as important as things that make it harder to play the current content.

Patch 7.1.5
  • Overall that changes to secondary stats were successful.
  • Arcanocrystal is a special case. Trinkets in previous expansions with no primary stats were seen as awful, so the team made it over the item budget. There isn't really any way to fix this without making an item worse for players that already have it. It should fall out of favor as item levels go up with Tomb of Sargeras.

Patch 7.2 Relics
  • After completing the next step of your Order Hall campaign, two more tiers of research are unlocked. Research adds a second trait to all relics.
  • Relics having two traits creates more possibilities for desirable relics. It also brings the worst and best relics closer together.
  • If you are a Ret Paladin and want Avenging Wrath traits, there is only one relic that will give you that. You have to run one dungeon to get that relic. In Patch 7.2, any relic will have the chance to have that trait, so you will have the possibility of getting an exciting relic from any boss.
  • This adds more possibilities and customization to the relic system.
  • The extra trait that rolls on these relics will always be a throughput trait (primary role enhancing traits).
  • The extra trait will always be different, so you can't get two of the same trait.

Legendary Items
  • Tier sets and some trinkets that change effects based on your spec are somewhat of a concession.
  • Some legendary items have a name and fantasy that make them very distinct, so it wouldn't make sense to have them change based on your spec.
  • In raids you might not have someone that can use an item that only works for a specific spec, so items that change based on spec make sense, but legendary items are personal loot, so you will always be able to use what you get.
  • Patch 7.2 makes legendary drop bad luck protection more spec specific.
  • The system looks at how many legendary items you have that would drop for your spec, so if you switch specs the system will know how many legendary items that work for that spec. If you don't have any for that spec, you will have a higher chance to get one.
  • The legendary Enhancement bracer could probably use a buff. The team continues to look at legendary items that are somewhat underpowered or overpowered to bring them back in line.
  • Frost Death Knight helm is on the high end of the power range and is on the team's radar.
  • Resto Druid shoulders are also on the radar.
  • Getting a legendary item that you think is awful is one of the concerns right now, not as much how they are acquired.
  • The legendary items that are most problematic are the ones that feel like they are universally the best.
  • Sephuz is actually pretty good on some fights, so it is in a better place now.
  • The definition of competitive is subject to debate. You might be a few percent behind, but for most specs that is within the margin of error of your play on most fights.
  • Guilds that are benching players because their theoretical sim output is a few percent lower than someone else are probably not making the right choice.
  • The four crafted legendary items are all that is currently planned. The goal was not targeted legendary items, but instead making something exciting for the crafting professions to produce.
  • At the start of the expansion, crafted gear was exciting and useful. Over time that became less of the case, as other options became available.
  • Other professions remain relevant and strong today, so the crafted legendary items should add something that can be crafted and sold.
  • The crafted legendary items should be solid middle of the road legendary items. They shouldn't be the best.
  • As people get more legendary items, they can swap them out situationally.
  • The crafted legendary items don't count against your legendary bad luck protection.

Artifact Power
  • With Artifact Power, the team wanted to offer a universally desired currency, a way of progressing your character, and providing some choices along the way.
  • Even if you don't get loot from a dungeon, you got something that makes you a little more powerful. This way you never feel like something was a complete waste of time.
  • If this system is working initially, why should it ever stop working. The system initially had an attainable end point originally, so people felt like there was a finish line that they needed to race towards. Once players got there, they no longer get that extra reward of Artifact Power that is useful.
  • The team understands the desire of wanting to feel no obligation to grind and wanting an endpoint.
  • The team doesn't want Artifact Power to be something that you seek out as the only reward. If you are looking to go and farm Artifact Power with no other rewards, tuning wasn't correct.
  • Repeated Mythic+ farming to grind Artifact Power isn't very fun.
  • Patch 7.2 changes how lucrative how different types of content are. A lot of the AP is taken away from end of dungeon chests to reduce the incentive to chain run them.
  • The team is continuing to increase the Artifact Power rewards, including from the weekly chest. If you clear a +20, you might get 2 million AP from your weekly chest at the current AK level.
  • Overall, the team wants to move players away from feeling like they should grind content to get more Artifact Power. They also want to add diminishing returns, so that you eventually get to a point where you feel like it isn't worth the time to get another 0.5% power increase.
  • For the vast majority of players, the current system is working okay, they just take the Artifact Power as it comes.
  • Artifact Power isn't class wide because the system focuses on your individual Artifact. You empower a specific weapon to unlock new choices.
  • It would feel odd to play one spec, switch to another, and have your weapon fully powered.
  • The team is focused on significantly narrowing the gap between the power of weapons for different specs.
  • In Patch 7.2, if you put all of your AP into one weapon, you will only be a few points ahead of someone who was splitting it between two weapons. The reward for focusing on one weapon is a small reward.
  • The final Artifact trait in Patch 7.2 is still being tuned, but you will probably eventually reach that point of diminishing returns where doing something else over farming AP for that trait will make sense.
  • The final trait shouldn't be a mandatory trait, just something to give players to put AP into as they continue to earn it.
  • Artifact Power items acquired with AK 25 or less will not be usable once Patch 7.2 releases and you empower your Artifact and reach AK 26. This was done to prevent you from feeling like you need to farm AP now in preparation for Patch 7.2.
  • Patch 7.2 will add new Artifact Knowledge catch up tomes. If you are at AK 40 you can buy a AK 35 tome.

Tier 20 Set Bonuses
  • These set bonuses are not final and are still being tuned.
  • Tier 19 set bonuses were changed significantly over time before they released.
  • The Tier 20 set bonuses were just added to start collecting feedback.
  • Initially someone may just add some kind of set bonus to Tier 20 gear so that there is a set bonus, eventually someone will come back and take a look at it to tune it or change it.
  • The team doesn't want to hold back the Tier 20 set bonus ideas, they would rather get it out to players to start collecting feedback.
  • Tier sets went to six pieces in Legion to allow you to put legendary items on while keeping your set bonus. It is also cool to have a cloak that matches your set.
  • There aren't plans to make the 2pc from different tier sets exclusive right now, but you will have to make a choice between legendary items, the 4pc bonus, and other 2pc set bonus. This allows for an interesting gearing choice, but if it ends up feeling like there is only one correct choice the team may revisit this.

  • With the way the PTR works, there isn't a lot of filtering on what data is exposed when a new build is pushed out. A designer may just add a placeholder to something, causing it to go out with the next PTR build.
  • Often you will see things that are not right and not finished. Experiments and abandoned designs are in the data.
  • It isn't worth the effort and time it would take to go back and clean up or hide things, that time is better spent making new things.

  • There are existing tank trinkets that are very successful and widely used by tanks. Passive stats and mitigation are most reliable compared to an active ability.
  • The team is still iterating on trinkets that will drop in ToS in Patch 7.2.
  • The team was going to make a pass on tank trinkets, did it, and came to the conclusion that the trinkets aren't undertuned, but most players prefer the stat trinkets and aren't as excited by the active ability trinkets.
  • In the past, active DPS trinkets were used in line with other cooldowns, making them more powerful and requiring a power penalty. Other active trinkets don't work in the same way, especially for tanks, so there doesn't need to be a penalty, it will be a little stronger than the passive option if used correctly.

  • Group buffing traits are just a flavor thing and an experiment.
  • The team doesn't expect altered group compositions or stacking to take advantage of these.

Mythic Raiding
  • The team wants to shift away from players feeling like there is a finish line for Artifact Power.
  • Being in and running a mythic raiding guild is very hard. It is a drain on your time and emotionally.
  • Guilds have risen and fallen throughout the history of World of Warcraft.
  • Guilds leaving tends to reflect the officers and leaders reaching a point where they can't continue, either due to their situation in life or the changes made to the game. They may just walk away, causing the guild to die without the leadership. The remaining players may spread out and join other guilds that are still doing Mythic raiding.
  • The team isn't saying that everything is fine as it is, there is currently a feeling of a grind that the team is trying to address in Patch 7.2.
  • On some level, the game is not meant to be played 80 hours a week. When M'uru was released and guilds raided for 23 hours over a few days to get their world first, players on the forum asked if there should be attempt limits.
  • There is an ongoing arms race to play more and more for a very small advantage in the race.
  • Players used alt raids to learn fights when attempts were limited.
  • Some guild leaders expected raiders to chain run Maw of Souls all week. This was a problem.
  • The team wants to make a game with lots of goals you can progress to if you want to play a lot once in a while.
  • Lots of hard gating on things isn't great, so the team avoids it on most things. You should be able to join your friend for a dungeon Sunday night and still get some kind of a reward. This also means that you can chain run the dungeon for rewards.
  • Playing endless hours for a small advantage is not sustainable.

World Quests
  • The team is aware that some world quests have a static reward that doesn't feel worth it, extra gold or AP sometimes being rewarded might help.
  • Some world quests may be more lucrative up front occasionally, rather than randomly giving you an extra reward.
  • The tech isn't there yet, but the team has talked about it and wants to improve it.

Hatching of the Hippogryphs Micro-holiday Live
Hatching of the Hippogryphs is a micro-holiday that allows players to witness the hatching of hippogryphs in Feralas.

  • This event takes place in the Frayfeather Highlands in Feralas.
  • You can stand near an egg for a short while to keep it warm so that it hatches.
  • Once an egg hatches, you have a baby hippogryph on your shoulder for one day.
  • You can kill Lorthalium to obtain a Spectral Feather, which will keep your hippogryph around for five days.

by Published on 2017-02-23 05:58 AM

Hatching of the Hippogryphs is live today!

Patch 7.2 PTR - Build 23623, Raid Testing Schedule - Feb 23 - 24, Weapon Size Changes

Concordance of the Legionfall
The latest Patch 7.2 PTR build added a new Artifact Trait with 50 ranks, Concordance of the Legionfall
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Ion alluded to some of this in his post last week, but essentially the goal here is to address what we believe to be the core of the issue with the 7.0 final traits: the large gap in player power it created between players who spent a lot of time farming AP and those who spent their time on other endeavors. To that end, there's four key changes:

#1: The individual ranks are less impactful. This was honestly one of the biggest issues with the 7.0 design. Grinding out a couple million Artifact Power for a 0.5% raw damage increase was just too lucrative compared to other methods of endgame progression - even eclipsing gear for some players. The goal for the new 7.2 design is that the next rank is still an increase, and you won't turn it down, but it's not your primary focus.

#2: The rate at which the cost for the next rank increases is higher. In the 7.0 design, someone who farmed twice as much AP as you had roughly twice as many ranks as you. While rewarding the extra effort isn't a bad thing, it doesn't need to be nearly that rewarding. By making each rank's cost increase exponentially, we can help ensure that you're never too far behind even if you aren't spending as much time farming AP. It also means that, as Artifact Knowledge increases, it'll be easier for alts or newer players to catch up.

As a quick aside, to put some extra context on both of those changes: we always want Artifact Power to be of at least some value to you. It's fine to reach a point where you're not going out of your way to earn it, but it's purpose is to be a fairly reliable form of progression. If you spend an evening raiding, or run a few dungeons, or do some PvP, but don't get any gear upgrades, you should still be able to say "at least I earned some Artifact Power" with some level of satisfaction.

Anyway, key change #3: The new trait gives a primary stat bonus instead of a percentage-based increase. With the 7.0 design, as your gear improved, so did the total benefit you were getting from your final trait. Changing to a primary stat bonus means it's giving roughly the same benefit to someone at ilevel 900 as it does to someone at 850. Again, the goal here is to reduce the overall power gap.

And finally, #4: It's a proc. I know anything that involves RNG is often controversial, but this is, in my opinion, a great example of where it's extremely useful. This is for two reasons.

First, it kind of muddies the waters a bit. When you wipe on a boss at 1%, or just barely miss a kill window, it can be easy to say "if Todd was doing 2% more damage we'd have won." But when it's a proc, you can't actually be that sure. Maybe Todd needs more AP, or maybe he just got unlucky with procs. Maybe the wipe wasn't Todd's fault at all. Maybe you should be a little nicer to Todd.

Second (and more importantly), it allows for player skill to play more of a factor. If you're the sort of player who can pay attention to procs and adjust your rotation on the fly (say, a healer who chooses to use cheaper spells while it's active, or a damage-dealer who saves a charge of their hardest-hitting ability), you're going to get more value out of the new trait than someone who ignores it.

I've seen some initial feedback that indicates some specs are likely to benefit from these more than others - to some degree that's expected, but specific feedback on which specs those are and why is very helpful. We're still actively tuning and tweaking things, so please keep that feedback coming.

I haven't been a hardcore progression raider for a few years now, but I can tell you with absolute certainty that wiping at 1% due to poor procs/RNG is INFINITELY worse than simply needing a bit more gear to push you towards that kill.
I understand where you're coming from but personally disagree - for me, knowing we just got unlucky means that it's worth it to try again and hope for a different result, whereas "we just don't have enough gear/AP" means we should give up and come back next week.

Either way, my point wasn't to say "this will make wiping at 1% less painful," but more to say it's harder to pin it on Todd skipping last week's M+ farm. Poor guy.

I rarely gamble because I understand odds and know that the house usually comes out on top. WoW is starting to feel the same way. Obviously you need some random elements to keep everything from being completely methodological, but its really getting overboard.
Sure, I can see that, and to be clear we're intentionally keeping the proc pretty flat; it should still feel somewhat reliable even if it isn't a 100% uptime. Also worth mentioning that most of #4 above is just my opinion as a guy who isn't a developer but plays a lot of WoW and gets to talk to to the devs sometimes.

The issue, Lore, is you're now creating a problem on the flipside of the coin where power gains are so small that they don't seem worth pursuing, and each rank becomes even less valuable compared to the previous. Frankly, just don't do it. Get rid of the "infinite" trait completely. Artifact power tokens now have a gold value, so cut progression off after the 4/4 ranks and the new traits are maxed. Let players transition to getting 1-2% upgrades from gear after they cap their artifacts and vendor the tokens for a little extra gold.
We honestly don't see that as a problem. In fact, it's kind of the goal. If you decide it's not worth grinding a few million AP to get another 200 Agility on your proc... great! We don't want you to feel obligated to.

We do, however, want to make sure you always find the Artifact Power you come across to be valuable. 200 more Agi might not be enough to convince you to farm the AP needed to buy it, but you're not going to turn it down either.

Well, or maybe you would, in which case, sure, feel free to vendor the AP items.

PTR Development Notes - Build 23623
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
This week’s PTR build has a couple new additions. The new Broken Shore World Bosses should be in, and 7.2’s crafted Legendary items are available as well (although they’re not fully completed, so expect to run into some issues with them).

We’re reaching the point of development where nearly all of the new content and features in Patch 7.2 are in-game and testable. From here, we’ll be focusing primarily on bugfixes, stability, tuning, and generally tightening everything up. Please continue to report any bugs you encounter and give us any feedback you have!

To help with stability testing, this week we’re organizing a scheduled stress test of the Broken Shore. We’ve made some behind-the-scenes changes to how our servers operate under heavy load, and so we’d like to get as many people as possible testing World Bosses and the Sentinax assault on the Broken Shore this Thursday at 2 pm PST (11pm CET). If you’re able to come help out, please do!

Thanks, and happy testing!

Azeroth Needs You! - On the Patch 7.2 PTR Thursday
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Brave adventurers—we need you on the PTR this Thursday (2/23) at 2 pm PST for the next phase of testing Patch 7.2: The Tomb of Sargeras. Please join us in the Broken Shore to test World Quests, bosses, and more.

Visit the World of Warcraft PTR Discussion, Bug Report, and Class Development forums to learn more about the ongoing development of the patch.

Read more about the upcoming features in Patch 7.2: The Tomb of Sargeras within our previews:

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Patch 7.2 - Relinquished Armor Tokens
Looks like Timeless Isle/Baleful gear (Tanaan Jungle). My guess is that this is merely another way to get legendaries, not *the* fix.
Yeah, the primary purpose here is similar to the gear vendors from the Timeless Isle or Hellfire Peninsula. Adding the ability for these items to create Legendaries is just an extra bit of functionality that makes sense for Legion.

Note that the actual costs of the tokens are intentionally much higher than their final values will end up being, as they’re not ready for testing. Making them prohibitively expensive was just an easy way for us to make sure they’re inaccessible for now. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Tier 20 Set Bonuses
The currently-datamined Tier 20 set bonuses are indeed mostly placeholder and untuned. Bear in mind that the current Tier 19 bonuses went through several rounds of revisions, and in many cases redesigns, before they went live as well. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Tanks and Magic Damage
Just pinging this thread to say that we're talking about magic damage reduction for all tanks, including Prot Warriors, and how it compares across the board.

It should be noted that Nighthold is highly unusual as raid tiers go - it ended up with a lot more magical effects for tanks to worry about than most, which has taken a couple of tank abilities that normally qualify as "kind of nice to have" and moved them to "extremely useful on many encounters." Not sure re-designing tank mitigation based on one raid is the right way to go, and we certainly don't want to make sweeping changes to Nighthold encounters at this point.

But like I said, we're talking about it. At the absolute minimum we can keep a better handle on it for Tomb of Sargeras. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

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