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  1. #1
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    chaud's Avatar
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    Warlords of Draenor Dev Interview, Feb 24 Hotfixes, Old AV, Blue Tweets, DLC #429

    Reaper of Souls - Pre-Order Loot Revealed

    EU Swiss Decklists, Jotto's Weekly: Fight Night S04E03 Breakdown

    Valla, the Demon Hunter D3:RoS Pre-Order Unlock Confirmed, Skin Preview: Angelic Valla

    Warlords of Draenor Developer Interviews
    There were a few developer interviews at the recent press events, so today we are taking a look at interviews with Ion Hazzikostas from videogameszone.de.


    Beta / Misc
    • Beta is Soon™
    • The team has been working hard since Blizzcon to make the content. The team has even added another boss to the Highmaul raid since Blizzcon!
    • Gul'dan isn't the threat in Warlords of Draenor, Grommash and the Iron Horde are. Gul'dan might even be an ally against them.

    Classes and Races
    • Casters have slightly too many instant cast spells, especially healers that can keep themselves alive without ever using a spell with a cast time.
    • Melee used to be the masters of damage on the move compared to ranged, but over time ranged got more and more abilities that allowed them to do damage on the move.
    • Many classes will have talents that change depending on your spec. For example, From Darkness, Comes Light is really two talents built into one spell. This results in either talents that are bland or talents that do two separate things.
    • When it makes sense in Warlords of Draenor one spec may have one talent option, while another spec will have access to another. Almost all of the Level 100 talents work this way, and some older talents will also work like this.
    • For example, the Mage Bomb talent row could have all three bomb spells consolidated into one talent, which gives the mage a bomb based on their spec. This would free up two spaces on that row for more talent choices.
    • No brown skin for Orc players is planned right now, but the team has heard all of the player interest in subraces.

    Dungeons and Scenarios
    • Mists of Pandaria Heroic dungeons were too easy for many players, which was somewhat necessary due to not having Normal difficulty dungeons at Level 90. Warlords of Draenor fixes this by having both Normal and Heroic dungeons at Level 100.
    • Normal dungeons will likely be similar to the Mists of Pandaria Heroic dungeon difficulty, while Heroic will be more challenging.
    • Raid Finder will be balanced around players having gear from Normal difficulty dungeons.
    • Gear progression will likely use Normal difficulty dungeons to gear up for Raid Finder and Heroic difficulty dungeons to gear up for Normal difficulty raids.
    • The Challenge Mode daily quest in Warlords of Draenor will give you a piece of epic gear that is on par with or better than Raid Finder loot, even before Raid Finder and maybe even the raids are open. This is awarded to anyone who completes the dungeon, meaning that there is no time requirement.
    • Warlords of Draenor leveling will make use of some solo scenarios at the end of a zone, similar to what we saw on Isle of Thunder.

    Raids
    • Highmaul is very non-linear, with a layout that is similar to Firelands (open outdoor area with some optional bosses before the two final bosses).
    • Blackrock Foundry has a layout that is similar to the second part of Icecrown Citadel, with three wings of three bosses each. You can do the wings in any order you want, gaining access to Blackhand after all three are complete.
    • Less linear structures work better for players and feel better, so that is what will be used going forward.
    • There isn't a separate raid tier for each Warlord, and we may even see two or three in the first raid tier.

    World Bosses
    • Attempts at creating a hard World Boss haven't worked out very well.
    • Sha of Anger may have been the most successful world boss in Mists of Pandaria. It was accessible, felt epic, and you could see him while leveling.
    • Three different world bosses are planned for Patch 6.0. Initially one boss may be available, with Highmaul quality loot. Then a few weeks later, a second world boss could unlock that drops Foundry quality loot. Much later in the tier, a third world boss could unlock that drops some Heroic raid quality gear.
    • If a world boss gives rewards that are better than anything you could get if you aren't a high end raider (Ordos), it diminishes the importance of raid zones. If rewards aren't that good, players will start raiding and the world boss won't be relevant anymore.

    Ion
    • Finally joining Twitter has been nice, as it gives Ion a direct channel of communication with players and a way to share information with players. He doesn't want to share much new information about the expansion there though, as he feels it should come through the official sites.
    • Ion was a practicing lawyer for several years, as well as a hardcore WoW player from Day 1. He got to know some of the devs through playing and offering feedback, applied to Blizzard, and now he is the Lead Encounter Designer.


    Patch 5.4.7 Hotfixes - February 24
    Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
    Classes
    • Priest (Forums / Skills / WoD Talent Calculator)
      • Shadow
        • Resolved an issue where using an instant cast spell while under the effects of Spectral Guise was incorrectly causing the cooldown for Psychic Horror to reset.

    Pet Battle
    • Resolved an issue where players on some Battlegroups were unable to queue for PvP Pet Battles.
    • Elemental pets should now correctly be taking less damage while the Sandstorm effect is active.

    Old Alterac Valley
    Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
    Man, lots of nostalgia thinking about oldschool AV. I spent a LOT of time in there during Classic. Spending hours pushing back and forth until finally we were able to overtake a bunker and just get that minor foothold, and then scrambling to defend it... good times.

    It's a feeling we'd definitely like to bring back to the game in some way. We're not sure that today's AV is really the best place to do that though. When you queue for a random battleground, you generally expect that battle to last maybe 15-20 minutes or so. It wouldn't really feel great to see your queue pop, click to join, and then see the AV loading screen and know you could be in there for hours.

    But like I said, we definitely want to see those huge battles in WoW again. Ashran (our new world PvP zone in Warlords) takes a ton of inspiration from those early Alterac Valley battles. It's designed to be an epic tug-of-war style battle, where you can either take direct part of the battle on the front lines, or work towards various other objectives that will support your faction in the main push. It's not a quick fight that's over in under an hour -- it's something that could take days before either side can claim a real victory, and you're rewarded for just participating even if you're not there for the final push.

    We really want Ashran to hit that same chord that Alterac Valley did when it was first added, and we think we can pull it off. Can't wait for you guys to get your hands on it.

    You could bring back the old AV by simply removing it from the random battleground queue and making a queue system solely for AV. Or you could keep the current fast version in the random BG queue, and bring back the old version as a "Classic Alterac Valley" queue that isn't part of the random BG. I don't honestly think it would be all that hard for you guys to implement, considering you must have the old Alterac Valley files still on hand at Blizz HQ.
    That's something we've talked about. It's still a possibility, but it's not quite as easy to pull off as just restoring some old files. Remember, the game has changed a lot over the past 9 years. We'd rather spend that time working on something brand new.

    Blue Tweets
    Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
    Classes
    Thoughts on Searing Totem with a CD? HST has been a rewarding design. Seems essential for totem to feel meaningful.
    Unlike healing cooldowns, DPS cooldowns, especially short ones, are mostly used on CD. Much less interesting. Even maintenancey. (Celestalon)

    When making new abilities, do you prefer to design around art assets you already have, or to get new ones made up for them?
    Prefer to get new ones, as time allows. Feels more special, impressive, and fun when you get something new, not recycled. (Celestalon)
    We have to recycle art assets sometimes due to the realities of game development, but we try to minimize it, and hide it as we can. (Celestalon)
    IMO recycled art is a good thing if it results in extra dungeons and bigger raids
    Spell FX and dungeons/raids/scenarios/world/etc are *usually* different artists. (Celestalon)

    Are there any combat concepts that you avoid when designing because the engine doesn't handle them well, or at all?
    Hmm... Well, we've learned what limitations to respect (as few as they are). For example, reliance on split second reaction times. (Celestalon)

    What do you think about this idea: Spells that instead of having a set cast time, becomes stronger the longer you cast them?
    It's something we've toyed with. Hard (but not impossible) to design interesting choices of when you want to let it go off. (Celestalon)
    Most spell designs would either be optimal to let loose right away, or after as long as possible. Fun ones would be in between. (Celestalon)
    What about arcane blast stacks on a smart heal? If you spam it, you go oom quickly, but you have that burst option.
    Saving Grace ends up with similar gameplay to that. (Celestalon)

    when designing stuff, what sort of ping do you allow for? eg we average 200-300 from Australia yet usa is sub 100
    We try to make sure the game feels playable for up to 500ms, but fudge it occasionally if we're short on other choices (AR). (Celestalon)

    What is the defensive value of vengeance?
    It does things like increase the healing of Word of Glory, the absorption of Shield Barrier, etc. (Celestalon)
    Why not completely remove vengeance? Why does a tank need to get hit hard to be effective?
    So that things like Shield Block and Shield Barrier can stay competitive with each other. (Celestalon)

    Will the change to vengeance in WoD make it once again extremely painful to level as a tank? -10 internet points if thats a yes.
    No, opposite. A) You have basically no vengeance while questing/soloing. B) Tank damage will be *MUCH* higher without Vengeance. (Celestalon)

    but won't that mean that doing solo content/leveling in tank spec will be a burden again?
    Not at all. Your damage will be *much* higher without Vengeance. (Celestalon)

    Character / Items
    Will there be any difference between a heroic, normal or flex heirloom weapon while leveling a character up to 100?
    While leveling, yes. Higher tier is stronger. The gap narrows as you level, until they're identical at level 100. (Celestalon)
    Do we know how they'll compare to gear available at L100 (ending quest gear, pre-raid blues, etc.)?
    I believe tweeted details on that. I think they were equal to dungeon blues? Not sure, offhand. (Celestalon)

    Art
    Would <3 visible backpacks beltsatchels potions poisons. Check out this custom fan model. http://t.co/sXMWskUego
    I like your ideas man, and that backpack is great. Thanks for taking the time to make these suggestions. (artofcgrobinson)

    Would you happen to know if Moonkin form models are being tweaked in WoD to complement character model updates?
    They are not. (holinka)

    PvP
    Instead of "Rank 1" titles being awarded to the top 0.1% would it not make more sense to just give it to the top 40 in 3s, 65 in 5s
    Different regions have different numbers of players (holinka)

    With the high BF currently, I think it's fine even in arena. Not all that different from Void Shift or UE+NS/GHW.
    They are balanced around not having it. It doesn't make sense to make it usable then make it unusable a patch later. (holinka)

    Will we see any changed in divine shield and lay on hands in arena? In my opinion Lay on hands should be able to use then bob.
    Agree that at current tuning, LoH wouldn't be outrageous, but as soon as Warlords hits we'd have to change it back. (holinka)

    Can you tell me why target marking is disabled in arena groups?
    it's disabled on player targets in general (holinka)
    Is there a gameplay reason for that though? Or better said would it be problem to enable it?
    Yes, visibility mechanics in the game that marking would render moot. Line of sight being the most obvious one. (holinka)

    little Q: What if "swap spec" become an instant ability(CD) usable in combat? i fell would be nice4PvP.
    We don't want people switching specs in combat. (holinka)

    Dark Legacy Comics #429
    DLC #429 has been released!

    Last edited by chaud; 2014-02-25 at 10:25 AM.

  2. #2
    High Overlord
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    ferssst yo

  3. #3
    Over 9000! Kaleredar's Avatar
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    If a world boss gives rewards that are better than anything you could get if you aren't a high end raider (Ordos), it diminishes the importance of raid zones. If rewards aren't that good, players will start raiding and the world boss won't be relevant anymore.
    I can feel some bad stuff coming down the pipes to bite at this one...

    To nip that in the bud as best as possible... I highly doubt that anyone would "be driven to raid" if they didn't raid otherwise, irrespective of whether they got a few shiny Ordos loot tokens.

    Ordos gear tends to have a lot of blue sockets on it anyway...

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Kaleredar View Post
    I can feel some bad stuff coming down the pipes to bite at this one...

    To nip that in the bud as best as possible... I highly doubt that anyone would "be driven to raid" if they didn't raid otherwise, irrespective of whether they got a few shiny Ordos loot tokens.

    Ordos gear tends to have a lot of blue sockets on it anyway...
    i think what he meant is that by having world bosses roll out over time (normal, warforged, then heroic) that they can fix that problem.

    by the time you get all your loot from a world boss and raid theres a new world boss so world bosses remain a thing all throughout a tier
    "I was a normal baby for 30 seconds, then ninjas stole my mamma" - Deadpool
    "so what do we do?" "well jack, you stand there and say 'gee rocket raccoon I'm so glad you brought that Unfeasibly large cannon with you..' and i go like this BRAKKA BRAKKA BRAKKA" - Rocket Raccoon

    FC: 3437-3046-3552

  5. #5
    I hope those world bosses will be better than celestials and ordos which were boring chores from the start.

    I rather have no world bosses than having to choose between doing a boring chore or skipping on ridiculously good loot.

  6. #6
    What about quivers? Are they going to bring them back cosmetically? I want to see arrows on the back of my bow-wielding hunter...

  7. #7
    Pandaren Monk Telaq's Avatar
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    me likey likey!

  8. #8
    Gul' dan ally.... NO!

  9. #9
    Gul'dan Ally yes! Now I have to try to remember my cockamamie theory that accounted for that possibility.

    Also, spelled cockamamie right on the first go!

  10. #10
    Why can't they build a better story?
    Grom the ultimate threat? Baa, One Hellscream was enough..This game has a lot of good characters and they keep using the same ones, over and over again...

    Expecting another "You disapointed me, Hellscream"

  11. #11
    Oh christ, not more solo scenarios forced on the player. This is a MMORPG, stop pretending it is a single player game (and a quite gutted one at that, when it'll always be bottlenecked by its MMO nature). Making you go through a bunch of solo instances just to get to the Isle of Thunder dailies was very obnoxious.

  12. #12
    Epic!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lazy Gecko View Post
    Oh christ, not more solo scenarios forced on the player. This is a MMORPG, stop pretending it is a single player game (and a quite gutted one at that, when it'll always be bottlenecked by its MMO nature). Making you go through a bunch of solo instances just to get to the Isle of Thunder dailies was very obnoxious.
    But the solo scenarios do allow for story that's all they are there for..

  13. #13
    Is this the overhaul they mentioned? Doesnt seem like much we havent already found out.

  14. #14
    Epic! Warlord Booty's Avatar
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    Ooo, can I be the first to say "I quit and no you can't have my stuff"?!?! I'm not fighting against Grom. You could make the argument for us fighting vs Gul'dan or Zer'zhul, depending on when we encounter them, but... no. I'm not fighting Grommash Hellscream.

  15. #15
    haha great DLC

  16. #16
    Well, regarding the World Boss thing, as long as there's certain gear spots you can't get from them (like weapons, trinkets, etc. like all the world bosses in Mists), I don't see what that issue is going to be (unless mor3e people get up in arms about having to raid to get a full set of raid level gear (wait, what?). Want a better [insert item type here that you can't get on a world boss? Gotta raid for it.

  17. #17
    That DLC was a good one!

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Lazy Gecko View Post
    Oh christ, not more solo scenarios forced on the player. This is a MMORPG, stop pretending it is a single player game (and a quite gutted one at that, when it'll always be bottlenecked by its MMO nature). Making you go through a bunch of solo instances just to get to the Isle of Thunder dailies was very obnoxious.
    They've removed the RPG parts of the game over the last 5-6 years so it's more like an MMOG.

  19. #19
    Brewmaster Azahel's Avatar
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    Dark Legacy, bring low quality back!

  20. #20
    Ehm, ... dungeons to easy, to hard, too .... and what about HIPER STRONG TANKS or dps or healers that have no busines being in to low instances that RUIN completely enjoyment to others? What I really hate and is reason why i stop playing any Wow expansion after leveling all my alts to max to have some egomaniac tank with zillion hp and rest, that just rush through instances alone. No need for any sap or alike, no planning, .... for long time now. Blizzard lost me after Wotlk. And with every expansion they do more mistakes. As there is LOW ilvl limit there should also be UPPER ilvl limit or such egomaniac player should be automatically downgraded to be suited for normal or heroic dungeon. So we still leveling players can enjoy again. Or make separate kind of 5mans.

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