Raid and Dungeon Live Q&A
A recap can be found below:

Dungeons
  • Heroic dungeons could use some improvement, but the current problems with them aren't all new in Warlords. In previous expansions there would be catch-up content that rewarded better gear than the heroic dungeons. Even in Mists of Pandaria, Timeless Isle removed any need to step inside Heroic dungeons.
  • Heroic dungeons aren't very useful right now in terms of gearing up.
  • Valor or badges were a reason to run dungeons in the past, but that wasn't a satisfying use of the dungeons. You would run a dungeon that you were far too strong for, which doesn't always feel great.
  • Challenge modes are now a timed run, but can also be used as challenging content for gear progression. Patch 6.1 updated the rewards to item level 660 to keep them relevant. You can't queue for them randomly and can only do one a day, but it is something.
  • A Mythic version of dungeons is something that has been talked about internally, but nothing to announce right now. It would be nice for dungeons to remain relevant later in the expansion. Would increased numbers and item levels be enough, or would the dungeon need new mechanics to really be Mythic?

Loot
  • Getting one random item from a garrison mission every two weeks from a difficulty higher than the one you are doing now is fine.
  • Older Raid Finder content had another color variation of the gear to add some differentiation between difficulties. It wasn't reasonable to expect players to know which color variation was from which difficulty when looking at people around town. In Warlords the Raid Finder set has different art and this is likely to continue going forward.
  • Raid Finder being easier than heroic dungeons and giving better loot is partially due to it having a weekly lockout. You can run heroic dungeons repeatedly to quickly gear up. Raid Finder is a way for players to experience the content and story, as well as a way to earn some meaningful upgrades. If Raid Finder gave worse loot than Heroic dungeons, participation would be lower, players would only run it a few times, and queue times would go up.
  • There is no reason to not use personal loot right now, but players may not want to trust a seemingly random system, even if it is mathematically the same.
  • The way personal loot feels will be improved in future patches, avoiding situations where everyone wins loot or no one wins loot.
  • The raid leader chooses the loot system and they have an incentive to choose Master Loot to be the master looter. If you don't like Master Loot, find another group or make your own that uses personal loot.
  • Personal loot has worked out very well. The short period of time when personal loot was disabled at the start of Warlords showed the benefits of personal loot. Competing with players in the group for loot wasn't fun, it was nicer to work together to kill bosses.
  • Warforged gear was initially used to make the larger raid size more attractive. It is now used as another bonus property to give players a little bit of excitement when killing a boss repeatedly. It also gives groups a power increase over time, even when clearing content on farm.
  • Raid Finder will be better itemized in the future.
  • Spirit could be changed in the future to also do something like increase your spellpower. Items that are Best in Slot for half the raid due to itemization aren't ideal.

Classes
  • Normal and Heroic difficulty tank representation is currently fairly balanced across the different classes. The goal was to make sure all tanks are in the same ballpark in terms of their overall ability to perform in a raid zone as a whole, which was achieved.
  • Some of the perceived tank representation imbalance at the highest end is due to how tank mechanics interact with specific fights and the availability of alts to switch to. Brewmaster being popular in Mythic BRF is partially due to how their mechanics interact with the fights. They can Stagger a lot of the physical damage spikes, giving them an advantage on some of the fights.
  • Raid cooldowns aren't too strong right now, especially those available to non healers. Guilds aren't stacking classes for things like more Smoke Bombs. Some of the healer cooldowns could use a little balancing. Using a big healer cooldown to stabilize the raid after something happens is important for teamwork and cooperation, giving an organized group an advantage over a random PuG where there is no coordination.

Raids
  • Watcher enjoyed Operator Thogar, but in general most fights were well received. Trains make everything cooler, raid bosses included!
  • Itemization in terms of which stats are available don't really affect a group's performance as a whole. It can affect the relative power of specs, as some specs got stronger when Blackrock Foundry came out and gear starved specs got better gear. That situation is something the team will try to minimize going forward, but that affects the individual. In terms of the entire raid group it will average out.
  • Normal and Heroic Blackrock Foundry are no longer too hard for smaller raid sizes. The team has made some changes and is keeping an eye on it though.
  • Raids shouldn't get harder as you add more players, such as they did with the breakpoints in Siege of Orgrimmar. You shouldn't ever have to tell someone they can't come to the raid because it would make the encounter too hard.
  • The Patch 6.0 raids had a smooth progression curve. There weren't any huge brick walls that guilds ran in to. Almost everyone who finished or got through most of Normal Highmaul started on Heroic and people were able to continue progressing there.
  • Having multiple difficulties also has worked out pretty well, as most players and guilds aren't feeling obligated to go back and keep doing easier difficulties.
  • Mythic Kromog originally had pillars spawn far from the boss, but a hotfix moved them closer to Kromog so that melee DPS could damage them too. The encounter is back in a good place now, with a healthy number of melee DPS being in many kills now.
  • The team is keeping an eye on success rates in BRF, with tweaks to the earlier bosses to make them a better entry point. BRF is a continuation of Highmaul so it is tuned around you having normal Highmaul gear or BRF Raid Finder gear. BRF should be accessible if your group is going in in the 650s.

Raid Design
  • Two tanks will be the baseline for raids, with maybe occasional slots for a third. Going over two would make it necessary for guilds to find another tank to continue raiding. Tanks can generally find groups fairly easily or make their own groups.
  • Sometimes needing a third tank is by design, especially in Mythic, but it is sometimes emergent.
  • When designing raid bosses, the team starts with designing a Heroic fight and then changes it to make it harder and different for Mythic and easier for Normal.
  • Sometimes the team designs a fight and was aiming for Heroic, but after testing they realize it is really a Mythic fight. Some abilities are then removed to create the Heroic fight.
  • Over 90% of guilds that raid have a roster of people that normally raid with them. They don't have a ton of players on the bench or lots of alts to swap out.
  • Mythic progression guilds that are pushing hard will likely take advantage of situations where a certain spec or class is better, but the vast majority of guilds aren't doing that and don't need to. The goal is for everyone to have a situation where they can feel awesome.
  • Elevators are a convenient way of going up and down, but the team can explore other means of conveyance. Throne of the Tides was a dungeon where movement force would have been more fun than an elevator.
  • The goal isn't for everyone to have exactly the same capabilities and performance on every fight. The goal is to have different fights where different classes or specs will shine. Some classes or specs will do better on some fights than others and it will average out for the overall majority of players.
  • If a fight can't be completed with a reasonably balanced group and stacking of a class or spec is almost necessary, that is a problem and it will be fixed by tweaking mechanics or narrowing the gap with class and spec niches.

Titles
  • Realm first titles like Obsidian Slayer aren't likely to return.
  • Some of these titles just were awarded to whichever guild leveled to the cap fastest or what players in the guild got to participate in the kill. Realm first guild achievements work better, as they reflect that the entire guild worked towards the achievement.
  • Titles like Death's Demise weren't earned by any guild with just 25 people involved. There were players that were involved in many wipes who may have been swapped out on that particular attempt or day who didn't get the title, which wasn't ideal.
  • Personal titles for defeating bosses on the hardest difficulty become more attainable over time, but they retain prestige in the moment.

Misc
  • There is no Troll dungeon in the next patch because there are no Trolls in Draenor.
  • The shortcuts in challenge modes were a bug that got fixed in Patch 6.1. Normally it would be a bug that should have been fixed, but in this case it will affect challenge mode leaderboards and could have gone without being fixed. The team could bring back the old terrain with a client patch or wipe the leaderboards, which is the direction they are leaning.
  • The internal bug tracking system has 400,000+ bugs that have been fixed over time.
  • The Group Finder tool has worked out really well. Filtering options and the UI will continue to be improved. Initially the filtering was limited as the usage of the group finder grew, but now that it is very popular more filtering might be helpful.
  • The rules for kicking people could use another pass and it is something the team is looking at very closely. Most of the rules are from Patch 3.3 and the game is very different today. Now that loot is personal and guaranteed to be sent to you even if you are kicked from the group, there isn't any reason for players to kick other players to abuse loot rolls. Some of the restrictions could be removed.
  • The team's focus is on reducing the gap between the final content patch and the next expansion. Siege of Orgrimmar was way way too long. This expansion will have whatever number of raid tiers is necessary to avoid that long gap. Six or seven months is long enough for most big raid tiers. Thirteen months is way too long.
  • Timewalker is still something being worked on and maybe there will be something to talk about in the near future.
  • The current way the World First race works (community driven) is fine. There are too many variables to ensure perfect fairness for an official World First.
  • Community created raids aren't likely to happen, but the team takes into account feedback when designing raids.


New Cindermane Charger Rides into Recruit-A-Friend
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
We’ve just added a new reward to the Recruit-A-Friend (RAF) reward stables—the incendiary Cindermane Charger. Found on the remote fragmented islands of the Firelands, these smoldering steeds run with the fury of Ragnaros—perfect for blazing a trail across Azeroth and Draenor.

The Cindermane Charger is only available through the RAF program, so get to recruiting now to earn your new mount!


Learn more about the Recruit-A-Friend program here.

Blue Tweets
A nice tweet from the official World of Warcraft account today:

This article was originally published in forum thread: Raid and Dungeon Q&A, New Cindermane Charger Recruit-A-Friend Mount started by chaud View original post
Comments 61 Comments
  1. arcaneshot's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by papajohn4 View Post
    So dungeons will never be a progression path again, like TBC and WotLK because of LFR...Is this how your next expansions will roll as well? This is your casual content? Run LFR once a week and pay us the sub? pf... and I was confident about WoD.
    They weren't a progression path, it was purely used as catch-up. So was the dungeons in Cata and the Timeless Isle in MoP.

    Anyone who was raiding at the time couldn't find a use for any of the loot in those late-stage dungeons.
  1. kamuimac's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Majesco View Post
    "Normal / Heroic BRF are no longer too hard for smaller raid sizes"

    What exactly does this mean? What did they change that I missed?

    We run with a raid of 12 people and BRF seems very unforgiving. When we add a few pugs and get up to 17+ it seems the fights are cake.

    I spoke to an old friend and his guild is feeling the same way.

    Is this just us? Am I missing something?
    its most probably due to how healing work atm - you feel it much more in smaller groups cause u have less healers to ease up dmg - adding extra healer make most of those fights really easy - for example if u run with 12-14 people run with 4 healers no 3 - encounters will take a bit longer but dmg income will be smoother. its boring but effective.
  1. Gadzooks's Avatar
    Meh, just more rationalization for their changes, and showing they don't have a clear vision of the game, or how their customers see it, and play it. No word on what might be coming next. Nothing definite, it's all more vague "we hope" and "we plan on" and "soon™" smoke and mirrors. What was the point of this Q&A? I don't really see that anyone learned anything, other than their washing their hands of Method cheating to get World First. Oh, and a new pony, for cash.

    Now, for the hilarious part - and Blizzard should fucking know better by now:

    Mythic Dungeons will be expected now, and every patch, there will be howls and screaming if they're not included.

    Timewalkers are now expected, same result.

    They've just guaranteed butthurt, if they're not included in the following patches.

    Seriously, do they never learn?

    And, nobody will pay attention to the personal loot comments. That meme is being spread to cover up for the people who are abusing ML. Period.

    And, finally - make up your fucking mind what LFR is. Either it's meaningless content to just see it, or it's part of the progression. Why does it have to have "meaningful" rewards, when it's dumbed down so hard right now that the fights are meaningless? Make up your fucking mind! Give LFR a definition, and stick to it!

    This whole expansion is just one big lack of vision of what the game is, and how it's played. It's like they throw darts at the wall to decide what to "fix" next, and by "fix", I mean destroy. This Q&A does not strike me as a team who has a clear vision of how it all works, that's it's all part of a shared vision and goals, and they're confident in it. It's all wishy washy cop outs and dithering and tweaking endlessly. You know why dungeons are pointless and no fun and need improvement? YOU DESIGNED THEM THAT WAY. That's all on YOU, devs! You had no idea, even though people were shouting at you in beta over it, that the lack of valor or meaningful rewards after a week or two would be a problem? Seriously? It's your game! You purposely made it like it is now, you made all of the decisions to release those dungeons in their current state, and NOW you're concerned over it? The only way that could happen is if they were designed and put into the final build and released with no oversight or review by YOU!

    Seriously. Someone needs to sit these guys down and put the fear of the pink slip in them. These are not professionals, this is amateur hour. They've been doing this for over 14 years now, including the dev time before vanilla. They should be a well-oiled machine now for pumping out good, solid, reliable content on a regular basis, setting up dungeons should be easy by now. What the FUCK is wrong in Irvine?
  1. mmoc26074bb54a's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by IIamaKing View Post
    I do not raid LFR, I do think the lazy design of gear there is bullshit. Most raiding is done in LFR. Why should the majority have to look like shit just to make some special snowflakes happy?
    So....LFR is easier than heroic dungeons,gives better loot ( basically free loot),they even gave you an LFR TIER,and now you want to add looks to all those as well?Next thing we know you will demand mount drops also....

    ANd you said it yourself,majority does LFR.Its absolutely nothing special.So those who do normal-heroic-mythic will get better rewards as the difficulty increases.What would be the point if we get awesome rewards on all difficulties?
  1. Sanguinerd's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Eace View Post
    Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
    The team's focus is on reducing the gap between the final content patch and the next expansion. Siege of Orgrimmar was way way too long. This expansion will have whatever number of raid tiers is necessary to avoid that situation. Six or seven months is long enough for most big raid tiers.
    Did anyone else feel relieved and happy to hear this? I mean, they straight up admit that they fucked up bad with the end of MoP, and they're not trying to make any excuses about it. Plus that's almost a promise that it's not going to happen in WoD.

    I think this is why 6.1 is so content-light, if you will. I think they're holding on to some content in case they need to churn out something really quick to avoid the now typical end of the xpac situation.
    I felt happy about it when they said it after ICC.. I sighed when they said it after DS.. and got annoyed when they said it about SoO so now I aint even gonna believe it anymore.

    But if this makes you feel better who am I to take that from you :P
  1. Irian's Avatar
    "Valor or badges were a reason to run dungeons in the past, but that wasn't a satisfying use of the dungeons. You would run a dungeon that you were far too strong for, which doesn't always feel great."

    Again with this whole "we're going to tell you how you enjoy playing this game and you're going to like it" mentality. It's not even an attempt to fix what isn't, it's taking what isn't broken and just destroying it.
    What are the developers smoking?
  1. asphyx5's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Eace View Post
    Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
    The team's focus is on reducing the gap between the final content patch and the next expansion. Siege of Orgrimmar was way way too long. This expansion will have whatever number of raid tiers is necessary to avoid that situation. Six or seven months is long enough for most big raid tiers.
    Did anyone else feel relieved and happy to hear this? I mean, they straight up admit that they fucked up bad with the end of MoP, and they're not trying to make any excuses about it. Plus that's almost a promise that it's not going to happen in WoD.

    I think this is why 6.1 is so content-light, if you will. I think they're holding on to some content in case they need to churn out something really quick to avoid the now typical end of the xpac situation.
    Blizzard has said this many times and at the end it's all BS imo, hard to believe what they say or not.
  1. Nexsa's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by kajeet18 View Post
    Fantastic, LFR is going to continue to have shittier/crappier looking sets then the real raids. Kudos blizzard
    Notice how you called LFR gear "Shittier/crappier" then "Real Raids"

    That right there is one of the biggest reasons LFR is a joke and only a catch up/to see content.

    Want the "real" nice looking gear, then pug or join a raiding guild. It doesn't require much time. I myself only raid about 6 hours a week, split into two days. Thursday and Monday.
  1. dproject's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Aakarshan View Post
    "Valor or badges were a reason to run dungeons in the past, but that wasn't a satisfying use of the dungeons. You would run a dungeon that you were far too strong for, which doesn't always feel great."

    Again with this whole "we're going to tell you how you enjoy playing this game and you're going to like it" mentality. It's not even an attempt to fix what isn't, it's taking what isn't broken and just destroying it.
    What are the developers smoking?
    Agreed with this. The majority of my friends playing this game are enjoying with dungeons in the past, where we can group together, chit chat and still got reward like badges to upgrade our gears. Thus, the community is still alive.
    Compared to the situation right now, where most of them just stay inside the garrison for couple minutes and log off, most of them already retired too. Mainly because the game itself becomes really boring right now. Why the developers don't realize this?
  1. sykoex's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by dproject View Post
    Agreed with this. The majority of my friends playing this game are enjoying with dungeons in the past, where we can group together, chit chat and still got reward like badges to upgrade our gears. Thus, the community is still alive.
    Compared to the situation right now, where most of them just stay inside the garrison for couple minutes and log off, most of them already retired too. Mainly because the game itself becomes really boring right now. Why the developers don't realize this?
    When they first said they were removing badges I thought if they're making a change this drastic it must mean they're replacing it something great and came up with a cool new way to make dungeons useful to players. But they basically just replaced it with nothing and made dungeons even more useless.
  1. Archmage Alodi's Avatar
    Live Long and prosper mr spock
  1. The Fresh Prince's Avatar
    The Fact that Blizz used "Peace and Long Life" instead of the more well known "Live Long And Prosper" just makes me all the more happier to see that(its my fave of the 2 salutes).

    RIP Mr.Nimoy

    & a Flight of Vulcans, sing thee to thy rest. :')
  1. Raeliron's Avatar
    I'm sorry, but people questioning why they get crappier looking sets in LFR and not in Normal, Heroic and Mythic difficulty -- ASK YOURSELF THIS: If I don't do my homework but I attend class and get perhaps a B on my exams, I get a C for my final grade; now because I got a C, I complain... does that make any sense?

    You want something more, yet you don't really wanna work for it... perhaps put in the time to do Normal Raids, deal with the groups that take it little more serious and get personal loot. You should value the idea of earning what you deserve. If I'm doing mythic difficulty, you damn right know that I deserve some Mythic loot, especially since I've worked hard for it. Why should you get a Mythic style look when you haven't done any of the other difficulties? GTFO of here with that crap.
  1. Baneleaf's Avatar
    I sent a RAF invite to myself, loaded a game key I had and 2 months game time and no mount. Thanks for another WoD dissapointment.
  1. mmoca9d0c481a5's Avatar
    This is reminiscent of the Diablo 3 dev talk they did earlier this month: the same we are happy with how things are, we won't change much, we don't think what you see as a problem is a problem and the things that are wrong we will fix them next expansion or months from now.
  1. Kolvarg's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by papajohn4 View Post
    So dungeons will never be a progression path again, like TBC and WotLK because of LFR...Is this how your next expansions will roll as well? This is your casual content? Run LFR once a week and pay us the sub? pf... and I was confident about WoD..Back to FFXIV I guess
    You can do CMs dialies (don't need to win medal, just complete the dungeon) to get better loot than LFR. You do have progression with dungeons.

    I'm hoping they further improve on it in the future tho. Maybe a weekly CM quest to get a bronze or silver medal, that awards Normal to Heroic raid gear (with proper itemization).

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Gadzooks View Post
    Mythic Dungeons will be expected now, and every patch, there will be howls and screaming if they're not included.

    Timewalkers are now expected, same result.

    They've just guaranteed butthurt, if they're not included in the following patches.

    Seriously, do they never learn?
    Quote Originally Posted by Gadzooks View Post
    Nothing definite, it's all more vague "we hope" and "we plan on" and "soon™" smoke and mirrors.
    I think you've answered your own question there.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Baneleaf View Post
    I sent a RAF invite to myself, loaded a game key I had and 2 months game time and no mount. Thanks for another WoD dissapointment.
    It takes about 1 week after you pay for the 2 months to get the mount. If you don't get it then, make a ticket.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by IIamaKing View Post
    I do not raid LFR, I do think the lazy design of gear there is bullshit. Most raiding is done in LFR. Why should the majority have to look like shit just to make some special snowflakes happy?
    Actually, from SoO statistics, LFR numbers were only bolstered because people who ran higher difficulties also completed LFR for gear or on alts. The data points towards the ammount of people that only raid LFR being inferior to the ammount of people that raids Normal or harder. The inclusion of Group Finder in WoD, and the changes to LFR rewards, will probably only increase the numbers for Normal and Harder.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by kamuimac View Post
    its most probably due to how healing work atm - you feel it much more in smaller groups cause u have less healers to ease up dmg - adding extra healer make most of those fights really easy - for example if u run with 12-14 people run with 4 healers no 3 - encounters will take a bit longer but dmg income will be smoother. its boring but effective.
    Yeap, it's about percentages. If you go with 10 people, 20% will be tanks, another 20% or 30% will be healers. If ONE person dies, you lose 10% of your raid. And most mechanics are fixed numbers and not really scaleable, so on smaller groups you also have a higher percentage of people handling specific mechanics.

    The only advantage of a smaller group, mechanically wise, is there are fewer people to screw up/not know what to do. Like stepping on Imperator mines =P
  1. mmoc0c7d3b21bb's Avatar
    The mount is looking awesome!
  1. Arvandor's Avatar
    i see only negative shit on this wall of bullshit!

    i hope the sub numbers on the q1 day reflect this..
  1. Frozen Death Knight's Avatar
    Peace and long life, mr. Spock. =(
  1. jangkun's Avatar
    Let me change that: "The team's focus is on reducing the gap between the final content patch and the next expansion. ICC/Dragon Soul/Siege of Orgrimmar were way way too long. This expansion will have whatever number of raid tiers is necessary to avoid that long gap. Six or seven months is long enough for most big raid tiers. Thirteen months is way too long." Yes, they said the same things for the 3 last expensions ^^

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