Update 21:15 CET
Nethaera updated the official WotLK Beta Patch Notes to reflect changes from the latest build (8905). It looks like there is nothing new here and everything was listed in our Build 8905 Changes post.
Reminder - Team Passes for MLG Dallas WoW 3v3 Tournament on October 3rd - 5th are now available ! You can buy them here !
Naxxramas - 10 Man - Loot List Update
Reminder, today we updated the loot list of Naxxramas with 8 more items.
- Weapons - Kel'Thuzad's Reach (K) (Melee - MH Fist), Wand of the Archlich (K) (Wand)
- Plate - Helm of the Unsubmissive (DPS - Head)
- Mail - Retcher's Shoulderpads (Mail - Spell - Shoulder), Bands of Anxiety (DPS - Wrist)
- Leather - Contagion Gloves (Spell - Hands)
- Neck - Caster DPS - Necklace (Spell)
That's a total of 124 items listed in our Naxxramas loot list, all of them sorted by type and specialization !
Protection paladin and warrior item changes
In the last beta build, a lot of protection items were changed to reflect the changes of mechanics in WotLK. A lot of strength was added, some secondary stats removed, you will find below a comparison of most of the items affected by these changes. This should be more than enough to give you an idea of what's going to change for you in the expansion / Patch 3.0.
Originally Posted by Blizzard EntertainmentNaxxramas and raid balancing
We expect Naxx to be the easiest raid dungeon in WotLK. If experienced Sunwell guilds were repeatedly wiping, the dungeon would be overtuned.
The raid game will ramp up over time. There will be many extremely difficult encounters for people to face. But the early bosses in Naxx are intended to be beatable very early on.
The 10's will get hard too. It's not a casual/hardcore thing. It's more about ramping difficulty and progression. (Source)
Naxxramas 25 Itemization
Next major beta patch will have the 25 player loot drop. (Source)
Racials in Arena
There are no plans to remove racials from arenas. To the best of my knowledge, the only racial that actually improved a player's average rating is Perception, which has been changed. Beyond that, it appears that racial imbalance is dramatically overshadowed by other factors. (Source)
Resist chance in WotLK
Also, note that with the wotlk patch you can completely eliminate resist chance through hit chance (you can overcome that final 1% resist chance). (Source)
Beta - Storm Peaks and Icecrown
Those zones were also causing issues. Unfortunately, we can't hotfix those areas so you'll have to wait until the next patch for them to be available. (Source)
Class Balancing - Methodology
We have spreadsheets -- huge ones. We have values for characters in greens and raid buffed with epic gear. We have estimates of mob damage and health, character downtime, the benefits from enchants, gems and glyphs. We have conversion rates of mana to runic power to energy to rage. We look at damage per second, efficiency, button presses per second, typical rotations, movement vs. standing still, mobs vs. players and every other variable we can think of (and there are a LOT of them).
In the end we come up with an estimate for what an attack should do. We come up with a budget for talents and spells just like we have a budget for items at a given level. Sometimes those estimates are wrong because we forgot to take something into account, or because there's a bug in a talent or spell somewhere that messes up the calculation.
And then we do lots of testing, and to get a reality check on our tests, we compare them to the numbers people are reporting from the beta. Repeat as necessary. I've said this in a few posts: that our numbers can sometimes be wrong (as is the case almost any time you deal with numbers), but the methods we use to arrive at them are absolutely not sloppy. (Source)
Very high / low DPS for classes and balancing
There are so many bugs in the data we're seeing right now, that they're good for detecting bugs, but not great yet for figuring out where everyone stands. Give it a couple of weeks and things will start to settle down. Currently we're getting situations where some classes are doing 3 to nearly 4 times the dps of others. Buffing every spec now to make sure they all hit 4000 dps would produce a very crazy game. Buffing anyone's dps until we've had a chance to analyze where each player's dps will derive from is premature.
It's an exciting time for us, because we finally get to see some level 80 characters in action. Getting so much data will finally let us get everyone adjusted. But we're going to need a decent sample size of data sets that we trust first. (Source)
Druid (Skills List / Talent Calc. (8905))
Feral Tanking and DPS in WotLK
We want druids to be able to MT Naxx and Ulduar.
I really don't think they're that far off, but if I'm wrong and bears collapse on Patchwerk, we'll change the numbers until they can stand up. We'll try to change the numbers in intelligent ways so that bears are tanking Arthas too and not standing in the back healing the warrior tank.
Likewise, if cat dps is always near the bottom of the dps damage meters, we'll fix that too.
There isn't any actual armor with bonus armor any longer. It was just too problematic a stat. It does still exist on non armor pieces: the rings, necks and maybe cloaks. The way the game is designed, tanks need a certain amount of armor and we'll make sure you have it without having to resort to PvP gear or Sunwell gear. As I have said before, we can boost the bear intrinsic bonus or Thick Hide or come up with a new scalar off existing stats. This feels like a solvable problem to me.
Personally, I would love to be able to get rid of Feral Attack Power as a stat. It feels a little kludgey and it makes itemization harder because you can't share with anyone else in the game. It's like having a libram for your main weapon. But it's not going to happen for Wrath, at least not initially. (Source)
Hunter (Skills List / Talent Calc. (8905))
Allow pet dismissal in stables
This is in the plan. It may not be available right at release, however. (Source)
We're paying attention to it. How easy or hard it is to kill the pet is a very important dial to get tuned right. We're trying to figure out if pet hit points are high enough, which I referenced in another thread (so post them there, not here). (Source)
Rogue (Skills List / Talent Calc. (8905))
Hit rating and poison
Bear in mind that increasing your hit rating from gear also increases your chance to not miss on your poison delivery (since hit rating works for both melee and spell attacks now). So, if you have +8% hit chance (for example), you'd never fail to apply poison to even a night elf (barring some other additional poison resist that they manage to get somehow). (Source)
Rogue talent trees feedback
Just wanted to make one comment on bloat. Having plenty of talents that you want put can't get is good for the trees. Also, some trees just have a lot of talents in them because they're trying to offer some very different options, while others are quite small.
What we do want to avoid, however, is a situation where there are so many "mandatory" talents that you end up not being able to pick up the fun talents. Mandatory talents are typically those that offer passive buffs to dps or efficiency that nobody in their right mind would skip over. We're fine having some of those, but having too many can tend to push builds more towards being cookie cutters.
We realize your trees are in a big of flux, which makes it hard to comment, but on the other hand, we're in a really good position right now to make adjustments to the trees. (Source)
Shaman (Skills List / Talent Calc. (8905))
Thunderstorm changes in latest build
Not exactly intended. It's still supposed to have relatively the same knock back distance, just we toned down the knock "up" effect. Should be fixed in the next build. (Source)
Wind shock removed from global cooldown
It will be off the GCD. (Source)
Warrior (Skills List / Talent Calc. (8905))
Arms is definitely something on our radar. The other two trees are getting a lot closer. Arms now has some self-healing like Fury, and the Overpower changes are in the right direction. We just need to smooth out some rough spots and try to make the whole thing gel. (Source)
Protection tree changes
I've tried to answer some of these questions in a few other threads, but I'll try and answer how AE tanking will be easier.
Keep in mind that I know my version of the data which is often a week or more out of sync with your build.
1) Defensive Stance generates more threat than on Live. Essentially it has Salv built in.
2) Rank 9 Thunder Clap hits for a base 300 damage with a 12% attack power coefficient.
3) Thunder Clap is also heavily buffed by one old and one new talent that many (but not all) tanks will have.
4) Your AP will be higher because tanking gear has a lot of AP and because of the way Strength boosts Block, you're just going to want more.
5) Because you have more AP, you're hitting harder, so you should be rage starved much less in 5-player instances. So you can use Tclap when it's up.
6) Thunder Clap has a 6 sec cooldown, so you don't need to spam it.
7) There is a glyph to increase Tclap's number of targets, and while I expect many tanks will have it, we also don't want to rely too much on glyphs to fix problems with a class. So consider this a very minor component, but I did want to mention it.
When you pull (with your helpful new pulling ability) and then Thunder Clap, you are going to generate so much treat that you're going to have time to position the mobs, Cleave or Sunder them or otherwise get ready for the next big Thunder Clap. This is a big difference from Live, where Thunder Clap often barely keeps you above the threat of the rest of the group and you're begging for enough rage to use it again.
P.S. If you're Prot, your helpful new pulling ability can pull casters. Yay. (Source)
On the issue of Defensive Stance threat...
Earlier in the beta, we removed the Defiance talent. It was a mandatory talent since encounters were designed around the very safe assumption that all Prot warriors had it. So Defensive Stance ended up generating more threat.
More recently in the beta, we did a similar thing with Salv. We pulled Salv as a blessing some time ago, so we baked even more threat into Defensive Stance (and equivalents for other tanks).
If this makes it easier to understand, imagine that everyone except the tank always has Perma Salv up and every tank has Defiance as a core ability.
On the issue of Thunder Clap threat...
Yes, the damage is 300 now. We wanted to buff damage by 50% to make up for the cooldown increasing. Having to hit it less often for a bigger effect is a good way to remove spam. It does do 75% threat (it was 150% on Live IIRC) and has an AP coefficient of 12%. Talented and glyphed, this makes it a crazy good ability... possibly too good, but we'll see. (Source)
PvP issues / Mortal Strike
We even threw in Charge in Berserker Stance too. Maybe that will help when you aren't tanking.
We still might need to adjust the talent depending on the outcome. When we say we don't want Charge to be part of a tank's rotation, we mean that we don't want to see the normal way to tank a boss to be backup (or Intervene) then Charge back in over and over to proc a stun and get some rage. It's totally cool to use it to get around the battlefield on short notice, but we don't want the backup and Charge thing to be mandatory. It may not be, since mobs tend to follow the tank and the min range is large, but you guys are clever and we just need to see it action some first.
I don't want to totally derail this thread with a discussion of the role of Mortal Strike in PvP (which is ironic, since it would actually be a re-rail). However, the plan for now is not to have an MS-like effect in Prot.
On the one hand, we have given it out to other classes, and perhaps coincidentally, perhaps not, classes lacking the debuff can struggle in Arena. On the other hand, if half or more of the specs in the game get something like MS, you are just going to exist in Arenas in a state of permanent healing debuff, in which case we should just make that an aura on entering Arena and be done with it.
We'll probably continue to evolve our views on the role of Mortal Strike. It's very much a work in progress and I'm almost certain this is not the final word on the subject. (Source)
Death Knight (Skills List / Talent Calc. (8905))
Major Death Knight Quest change
With the new patch, you HAVE to go back and finish your quests in the death knight starting area if you want to be able to interact with vendors or NPCs in Stormwind or Orgrimmar. If any of you have been to those cities, you'll know what I mean.
Eventually, death knights will experience the full quest chain before wandering out into the rest of the world. So for beta, pretend I have a big old ! over my head and I'm telling you to go back to Ebon Hold. (Source)
DPS Balance between trees
Overall, Blood, Frost and Unholy should do the same damage. Because of the kinds of damage they do, it probably won't even out on any single fight, but overall that's the goal. We don't look at numbers and say, oh well Frost is supposed to do 10% less dps. (Source)
Death Knight damage balancing
Death knights shouldn't be able to obliterate rogues (see what I did there?). In fact, many players will tell you that rogues can defeat characters of higher level if they get the drop on them. Death knights should have to rely on all of their tools and not just spam the hardest hitting ones. Death knights should not do the most damage in an instance while tanking. All of those things were happening before. Some were bugs, but some were just very generous numbers or stacking talents.
We think the numbers are a lot closer now. If they are too low, we'll adjust them, but we need to get more data first and finish the balance pass on all the classes to know if that is really the case. (Source)
Death Knight low DPS in current build
To use just one example, Plague Strike was overpowered. Its damage calculations didn't consider how much larger the Blood Plague ticks had become. It may not seem like a big issue since it isn't a hard hitting spell, but it was a very efficient one for the rune cost and it's not above the realm of possibility that some clever player out there would one day discover "Hey, you should never spend a U Rune on ANYTHING but Plague Strike." Spells get used in ways we never intended or predicted all the time. The only protection against that sort of thing happening is to balance all the spells, not just the high damage ones.
I have great confidence in our method of balancing the game. It is scientific and rigorous, and as such it's going to be a lot more robust than a single player who runs around and hits some mobs and says to themselves "Yeah, that feels right."
But at the same time, I'm not naive. I know we can cause or fail to fix balance problems, and some of those have been whoppers. Some were bugs, some were issues we didn't consider, and some were just incorrect assumptions.
When all is said and done, if warriors, warlocks, hunters and druids are hitting for 2500 to 3000 dps, then death knights will be too. I don't think that is happening yet, but it's pretty hard to tell at the moment why that isn't happening. We'll get there. Having most (but not all) talent bugs fixed and players in Naxx is providing a lot more good data than we had a month ago. (Source)
Dual Wielder vS 2-Hander
The design is that the death knight can dual-wield or use a two-hander. I know not everyone agrees with that design, and you are certainly welcome to debate it in this thread. My suspicion is that most DKs will use the larger weapons, since a certain famous rune weapon is a two-hander, and just because it fits the kit for a lot of people. But we aren't trying to specifically punish or promote one-handed weapons either.
The design is that neither wins out and becomes the obvious choice. We are trying to do that in part because it's so rare. All rogues DW, but no paladin does. All Fury warriors DW, but no Arms warrior does. We have sprinkled the trees with talents that benefit one system or the other. Typically, dual wielding eventually wins out, damage-wise, over two-hander use. As such we can't promote DW too much or it will dominate.
Tanking is a special concern. It is NOT the design that all death knights dual-wield when tanking. There is probably a slight motivation to do so because faster swings can be useful for generating early threat, and because you can stack mitigation by choosing two tanking weapons, which are all one-handed. Working against that is the parry counterattack of most bosses, which works against dual-wielding. We do have some knobs to turn here, such as making the parry rune enchant benefit two-handed style more than one-handed style. This is something we are going to keep a very close eye on. Again, the design is that both styles are equally useful. (Source)
Unholy Blight (Rank 2) bug
Unholy Blight Rank 2 was causing the World Server to shut down. We have temporarily disabled the spell in order to restore stability. We'll be looking into other stability issues throughout the weekend. Thanks for being patient with us. (Source)
Blood Boil minimum range
I'm not seeing a min range. Let us know if it's happening for all ranks. It shouldn't have one. (Source)
Upcoming racial ability changes
I already posted a line about this during the week end, but I guess it's a good thing to have the full version on front page.
Changes that should be in the next beta push. Bear in mind that some of these may change somewhat or entirely, and there may also be other changes coming in subsequent pushes.
It's only a list of changes, anything not mentioned didn't change.
- Hardiness now reduces the duration of stun effects by 15%
- Racial Passive "The Voodoo Shuffle": Reduces the duration of all movement impairing effects by 15%. Trolls be flippin' out mon!
- Berserking: no longer has an activation cost of energy/rage/etc
- Gift of the Naaru: The amount healed is increased based on the caster's Spell Power or Attack Power, whichever is higher. This ability does not lose casting time from taking damage.
- Shadow Resistance: reduces the chance to be hit by Shadow spells by 2%
- Frost Resistance: reduces the chance to be hit by Frost spells by 2%
- Racial Passive "Mace Specialization": Expertise with Maces and Two-Handed Maces increased by 5.
- Shadow Resistance: reduces the chance to be hit by Shadow spells by 1% (yes, this is lower than the other resistance racials)
- Will of the Forsaken: removes any fear, sleep, or charm effect (no longer has a lasting immunity).
- Quickness: reduces the chance to be hit by melee or ranged attacks by 2%
- Nature Resistance: reduces the chance to be hit by Nature spells by 3%
- Endurance: now scales based on base health, to be tuned to approximately a 5% heath increase if the player were wearing green quality gear
- Nature Resistance: reduces the chance to be hit by Nature spells by 2%
- Escape Artist: the freeing effect can no longer be resisted
- Arcane Resistance: reduces the chance to be hit by Arcane spells by 2%
- Mana Tap: ability removed (partially integrated into Arcane Torrent)
- Arcane Torrent: restores 15 energy, 15 runic power, or 6% of mana to the Blood Elf (along with the current 2s silence effect)
- Magic Resistance: reduces the chance to be hit by spells by 2%
- Perception: changed to a passive, now grants one character level of passive stealth detection
- Racial "The Fall of Humanity": Feign death which may trick enemies into ignoring you. Any threat is restored versus enemies still in combat upon cancellation of this effect. 5min cooldown
- Racial Passive "Human Supremacy": The dominance of Humanity is evidenced by having one more racial bonus than normal. Actually, make that two counting this one. (just a tooltip, no actual functionality)
- The Human Spirit: spirit bonus lowered to 5%
Note: this is a list of changes/additions, not an exhaustive list of all abilities. Racial abilities not mentioned here haven't changed (or are ones I forgot to put on this list).