World of Warcraft News and Raiding Strategies RSS Feed

by Published on 2010-08-28 08:13 AM

Bastion of Twilight - Build 12803 Preview
Bastion of Twilight will be one of the first raid instances of the expansion.

Encounters
There are 4 encounters in Bastion of Twilight, plus an additional Heroic-Only encounter.

  • Valiona and Theralion
  • Halfus Wyrmbreaker
  • Twilight Ascendant Council (Ignacious, Feludius, Arion, and Terrastra)
  • Cho'gall
  • Lady Sinestra (Heroic Only)




Zone Screenshots
The screenshots of the zones are without NPCs or doodads, this isn't representative of the final instance, just a preview of the architecture. Obviously a subzone like the Throne of Apocalypse is more impressive when Cho'gall is here sitting on his huge throne.

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MLG Raleigh Tournaments This Weekend
Originally Posted by Bashiok (Blue Tracker)
Tune in this weekend to the MLG Raleigh Starcraft II and World of Warcraft tournaments!

The live streams for North America's first major StarCraft II event start at 2:00 PM PDT, today, Friday August 27 with the Pre-Game Show featuring Day9, JP, HD/Husky, Vhell and Vansilli. The matches culminate in the championship finals held tomorrow, Saturday August 28 at 2:30 PM PDT. All matches feature live commentary by Day9, JP, and Husky.

The MLG World of Warcraft games begin at 4:00 PM PDT on Saturday with the championship match running at 2:30PM PDT on Sunday.

For more information about the teams attending, tournament schedule and how to watch the streams, visit www.mlgpro.com
Live Streams



WoW Schedule
Saturday August 28th
8:00 AM - 3:00 PM - Check-In / Account Setup
3:00 PM - 7:00 PM - Check-In / Account Setup / Warm-Up
7:00 PM - 7:40 PM - Dinner Break
7:40 PM - 10:00 PM - Winners Round 1

Sunday August 29th
8:00 AM - 10:00 AM - Warm-Up
10:00 AM - 11:10 AM - Losers Round 1
11:10 AM - 12:20 PM - Winners Round 2
12:20 PM - 1:30 PM - Losers Round 2
1:30 PM - 2:00 PM - Lunch Break
2:00 PM - 2:35 PM - Losers Round 3
2:35 PM - 3:10 PM - Winners Round 3
3:10 PM - 3:45 PM - Losers Round 4
3:45 PM - 4:20 PM - Losers Round 5
4:20 PM - 4:55 PM - Winners Finals
4:55 PM - 5:40 PM - Losers Finals
5:40 PM - 6:25 PM - Finals

Starcraft 2 Schedule
Friday August 27th
10:30 AM - 1:30 PM - Early Check-In
1:30 PM - 5:00 PM - Check-In / Warm-Up / Account Setup
5:00 PM - 5:30 PM - Welcome
5:30 PM - 7:30 PM - Winners Round 1
7:30 PM - 8:30 PM - Losers Round 1
8:30 PM - 9:30 PM - Winners Round 2
9:30 PM - 10:30 PM - Losers Round 2
10:30 PM - 11:30 PM - Winners Round 3 / Losers Round 3

Saturday August 28th-
8:00 AM - 10:00 AM - Warm-Up
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM - Losers Round 4
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM - Winners Round 4 / Losers Round 5
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM - Losers Round 6
1:00 PM - 2:00 PM - Winners Round 5 / Losers Round 7
2:00 PM - 3:00 PM - Losers Round 8
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM - Winners Finals / Losers Round 9
4:00 PM - 5:30 PM - Losers Finals
5:30 PM - 7:00 PM - Finals


UI Addon Functionality Returning
Originally Posted by Zarhym (Blue Tracker)
With the release of the next beta patch, we plan to re-enable the ability for players to use third-party addons. Many of the core user interface features are now implemented in the beta test and functional, so we feel it’s a good time to open up the field for developing and testing UI modifications.

Be sure to continue leaving us feedback about all of the new user interface features here: http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/th...66722&sid=2000

Feedback about the new guild interface can be provided to us here: http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/th...66721&sid=2000

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment

We Are Legendary - Retroactive!
We are making a exception for this guild achievement. Any legendary items you have already earned will count. (Source)

New content for the next Beta Patch
We do not plan to patch today, though we plan to have a great deal of new content in the upcoming patch. You'll get access to new zones and dungeons, and potentially an increase in level cap to 85. (Source)

Druid (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Feral Q&A
Can you make savage roar undispellable?
This is something we're discussing, but haven't made a decision yet.

Will Shred ever have no positional? : \
We like Shred and Backstab with positional requirements. We haven't changed our stance on this. If you find Shred too difficult to use in PvE, then Mangle. If you're not happy in PvE with the damage you can do while Mangling, and can't manage to stay in a position where you can Shred, then I hate to say it but this probably isn't the spec for you. In PvP we think it's more of an issue, but we've also buffed Mangle to where you can do credible damage with it.

Will dash be given the same treatment as sprint? (lower CD lower dura)
We think Dash is fine.

Is the new version of innervate intended to be worth less to specs with small mana pools like Feral?
Yes, exactly. In Cataclysm, healer mana matters a great deal. In that environment, having some dps who can prop up healer mana so well is quite overpowered. It's okay to have utility in providing the healers extra mana, but it can't get out of control. Balance and Resto druids will have bigger Innervates, but then they are also balanced around needing to use those on themselves most of the time.

Can you change the new version of survival instincts to have less of an effect but a shorter CD?, 60% is great, but at a 5 min cd, id rather have 40% on a 3 minute cd or something to that effect ya know?
This is the kind of thing we're still messing with. There are situations where the short cooldown weaker version is more useful and others where it isn't.

Is Bear form damage going to be a little bit higher then it currently is for Cata? can pulverize and mangle at least hit harder then maul? its kinda lame that our talented abilities hit much weaker then maul in bear atm
I wouldn't worry too much about numbers yet. We haven't made much of an effort to adjust them and won't until we're happy with the basic mechanics.

What is the purpose of thorns? you've been consolidating weird buffs so, i figure this is on the list of weird buffs with no real purpose
We think it has more of a purpose with more damage packed into a smaller window than weak damage available 100% of the time. In the latter case you'd never think twice about attacking someone with Thorns because it's never not there. It also asks a little more of the druid to use Thorns at the right time rather than just whenever the buff drops off. Thorns isn't a raid buff on the scale of something like Fortitude or Bloodlust so we see no reason to consolidate it.

Paladin (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Crusader Strike
I see this comment a lot, but I don't understand it. Can you explain to me why a 4.4 Crusader Strike is not strictly better than a 4.5 Crusader Strike? That might be the case if your rotation was so jam packed that you can't fit in another Crusader Strike until its cooldown drops by an entire 1.5 global cooldown, but we've gone on record saying that the rotation won't work that way. Hitting Crusader Strike even a fraction of a second sooner means a Templar's Verdict comes that sooner, letting you start the rotation again. That's a dps increase.

Haste is valuable above and beyond the Sanctity of Battle talent of course. Swinging more often is a dps increase alone, and can also lead to more frequent Art of War procs or Seal ticks.

Templar's Verdict at less than 3 stacks will almost never make sense unless you're in a situation where perhaps someone is running away (and for whatever reason you can't stun them etc.) so you might as well hit them now. (Source)

Priest (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Lightwell Feedback Needed
While any kind of feedback is helpful to a degree, we are much more interested in the feedback of players who have tried Lightwell in the most recent beta builds than those who just never cared for the talent. We are actively making changes to the spell to see how it plays, so it's important for us to know if the changes are noticeable and fun without that feedback getting buried under the cruft of bad reputation that Lightwell has built up over time. If it's still not cutting it, we're prepared to try something different, but we need a chance to see if that is in fact the case. (Source)
by Published on 2010-08-27 06:18 AM

If you can read this news post, you're on the new servers!
As mentioned yesterday, we finally started moving the servers to Curse's infrastructure this week. We're still moving a lot of stuff and some pages might be down for a little while but ... we're there! It means we can finally start planning funny updates to the site, and, well, a lot of bug fixes. We also have a couple of shiny pictures, thanks to Xtek.

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Dual-Specialization Price Reduced
The price of Dual-Specialization has been lowered in a recent beta build, it now costs 100 gold and new players who reach level 40 should be able to afford it without too much problem.



Character Selection Screen - Built-In Theorycraft
In Cataclysm, the character screen will let you check easily how much of stat you need to be capped, calculations for Expertise, Hit Rating, and a few other stats are available. This will probably save you a lot of time when you try to figure out if you really need that extra hit on your shiny new epic.



Build 12804 - Mount Hyjal Update
Mount Hyjal received a very interesting update in the latest beta build. If you visited the zone or looked at screenshots during early beta, you probably remember the huge crater called Archimonde's Vengeance. Well, this subzone is gone and has been replaced with a greatly improved version! The crater is no longer there but the key NPCs of the questlines are still around.

Before

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After

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Concept Arts
The Blizzard Art gallery has been updated with 2 pieces representing the Warcraft universe.

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by Published on 2010-08-26 09:16 AM

Baradin Hold Preview
Baradin Hold is the new PvP Raid Instance in Tol Barad. Just like the Vault of Archavon in Wintergrasp, the instance will only be available to the faction controlling the zone and according to the current layout of the map, Blizzard will most likely add more wings over time.






Cataclysm Zone Q&A: Azshara
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)
Delve into the mysteries of Azshara with game designers Craig Amai and Dave Kosak, who talked with us about the Horde's northward expansion and the rise of the Bilgewater Cartel as part of our ongoing coverage of World of Warcraft: Cataclysm. Adventure, conflict, and, of course, profit await those who enter the newly re-imagined Azshara!

Q. What was the original concept for the zone?

A. Azshara has always been somewhat barren in terms of content, so our original plan was simply to fill in most of the unused space and then take some of the quests that spanned multiple zones and move them completely over to Azshara. The zone itself was a bit of a blank slate, so this approach seemed obvious from the very beginning.

While discussing our goals for the overall flow for Kalimdor, we started to heavily consider when, where, and how goblins would be introduced to questing on the continent. We realized that we were in sort of a dilemma because, at that point, four out of six Horde races were being routed through the same 10–20 leveling experience in the Northern Barrens. It was only then that we decided to retrofit Azshara as an alternative zone for level 10 through 20 Horde characters and make it a goblin hub.

Naturally, once goblins got involved, things sort of exploded.

Q. Who will be using this zone (what levels/factions)?

A. Azshara is designed for level 10 through 20 Horde characters. Goblins will be encouraged to level in this particular zone because it expands on their story and sheds some additional light on already established characters. Orcs, trolls, and tauren will be able to choose between Azshara and the Northern Barrens, based on their personal preference. (Hint: Pick Azshara!)

Q. Without giving up any spoilers, what's the general storyline for this zone? How has it changed from the original design?

A. Having recently gained the mantle of warchief, Garrosh Hellscream is preparing for war to claim all of Kalimdor for the Horde. The goblins of the Bilgewater Cartel, headquartered in Bilgewater Harbor, are playing their part by building war machines, constructing weapons, and establishing a massive naval harbor within sight of Orgrimmar. Meanwhile, the night elves aren't content to sit idly by; they fully intend to challenge this unwelcome occupation in Azshara and hopefully stymie a conflict that would otherwise be carried deep into their forests.

Amid all this tension, the Bilgewater Cartel is also out to make a name for itself in true goblin fashion. What is the best way to show solidarity? Reshape the Bay of Storms into a giant Horde symbol! From there, a secret lab, an extensive rocketway, and a "pleasure palace" with its own golf course are just natural leaps in goblin logic.

Overall, players will find that very little remains of the Azshara of old. The Hydraxian Warlords have departed. Azuregos is missing. Xylem's tower still stands, but Xylem himself seems to have stumbled upon something that has quickly driven him insane. And while clumsy explorers continue to be eaten by the local giant-life, the goblins have developed a method to make such an unfortunate circumstance practical and, yes, profitable.

Q. How has Orgrimmar's relentless expansion altered the lands of Azshara?

A. Orgrimmar now has a massive gate leading north into Azshara, and the canyon that winds into this gate will give players a brief look at the war machines being wrought from goblin ingenuity and technology. The rest of the zone expands further on this promise of destruction. The middle of Azshara includes the new Bilgewater Harbor, which acts as a naval port for the entire Orgrimmar fleet, launching boats and zeppelins to carry out Garrosh's vision for the future of Kalimdor and beyond.

Q. What have the goblins of the Bilgewater Cartel, now aligned with the Horde, done to reshape Azshara in their (or Trade Prince Gallywix's) image?

A. A quick glance at recent cartographical surveys of the region will show that the goblin commitment to the Horde cause is strong. Azshara is now the largest terraforming project on Azeroth! Whether it's sculpting the terrain to promote Horde propaganda, moving an entire mountain to pillage the minerals underneath, or slapping the face of the trade prince on a nearby crag, there's no question who wears the pants in Azshara these days.

Q. What do you think is the most exciting new addition to the zone?

A. Well, there are super-intelligent raptors, a haunted bulldozer, a crack squad of goblin commandos, a hunt for Azuregos, an insane mage with countless apprentices, rat riding, parachuting from an exploding tower...

What if we just say that the most exciting new addition to Azshara is the entire zone?

Q. You mentioned earlier that Azuregos is missing, but now he's being hunted. What's going on there?

A. Strangely, Azuregos has disappeared, and no one seems to know where he flew off to. After that last group of bloodthirsty adventurers came through on some sort of quest to make a now-useless quiver, he's just been... well, he's gone, and there have been whisperings of someone in Bilgewater Harbor who will pay handsomely for information on his whereabouts.

Q. What goes into redesigning a zone like this?

A. We wanted to maintain the original color palette and fall-foliage theme for Azshara, but beyond that, it was a complete rework from the ground up. Artists began the process by creating some incredible landmarks, including a giant cannon centerpiece for the new city and an entire "pleasure palace" complete with the goblin equivalent of Mount Rushmore, which just oozed goblin flavor. Level designers then reshaped the environment, literally moving mountains, parting waters, and erecting a colossal, zone-encompassing rocket freeway. We then worked to complement the new scenery by adding a bizarre array of quests befitting the unique and crazy capitalistic culture of the Bilgewater Cartel.

Q. What was the most challenging aspect about implementing all of these changes?

A. Not using our new terrain phasing technology to blow up everything. Self-restraint doesn't come easy.

Q. What should players do or go see first?

A. Players should ideally start at the beginning, near the rear gate of Orgrimmar, and then follow the quest series from there; it'll lead you on a nice, smooth ride of awesome. Or, if you're the impatient type, head straight to Bilgewater Harbor, take a stroll through town, and grab some lunch at the local crustacean shack.

Q. So, last question. Bilgewater Harbor: great port town or the greatest port town?

A. From its roots as a humble "city-in-a-box" to the bustling metropolis it is today, Bilgewater Harbor straddles the line between myth and legend. At least, that's what the brochure says.

The orc commanders might argue differently, though. It isn't exactly easy to maintain discipline in an otherwise lawless city where every vice you can imagine is available for just a handful of silver and debauchery is half off.

Thank you, Craig and Dave, for taking the time to sit down and speak with us about the work you've done to revitalize Azshara as an epic leveling zone in World of Warcraft: Cataclysm!
As usual, here is a bunch of screenshots from the current build of the beta!

by Published on 2010-08-25 09:11 PM

BlizzCon 2010 World of Warcraft & StarCraft II In-Game Items
The Blizzcon 2010 Pet is another Murloc to add to your collection! Will try to get a better picture when the shiny little murloc appears in my game files.
Originally Posted by http://www.worldofwarcraft.com/index.xml
"Death will rise from the tide!" Level 80 Elite Tauren Chieftain once warned -- and at BlizzCon 2010, the band's dire musical prophecy will finally come to pass. Everyone who attends this year's BlizzCon or purchases the BlizzCon Virtual Ticket will receive an exclusive set of murlocalyptic in-game items for World of Warcraft and StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. World of Warcraft players will be joined by Deathy, a murloc companion decked out as Deathwing and doing his best to strike fear into the hearts of Azeroth's crustacean population. You'll also be able to display your tidal pride in StarCraft II with a Murloc Marine character portrait and a pair of deep-sea decals to emblazon on your units, each with a different terran, protoss, and zerg design.

BlizzCon 2010 takes place on October 22 and 23 at the Anaheim Convention Center. For further details or to order the BlizzCon Virtual Ticket, visit www.BlizzCon.com.
by Published on 2010-08-25 08:17 AM

Throne of the Four Winds - Skywall Raid Instance
Let's post something new today! The Throne of the Four Winds is the raid instance in Skywall, the elemental plane of Air. It will feature 2 encounters:


  • A fight against the "Conclave of Wind", a Djinn council. (The Djinn model in the game files is the one used by Siamat)
  • A fight against Al'akir, the Elemental Lord of Air. (No models yet)

The instance looks similar to the Vortex Pinnacle, the 5-man dungeon of Skywall and players will move between platforms with their flying mounts.




Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Hunter (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Volley removed
I know I'm going to regret posting in this thread again, but I think it's the right thing to do so I'll take one for the team.

We think Multi-Shot is a more interesting ability and can fill the hunter AE niche (along with Explosive Trap). We'll have to change Multi-Shot from the current version to get it there. I'm very sorry if for some unusual reason Volley was your favorite spell as a hunter. We've been trying to consolidate abilities and free up some bar space and having multiple AEs that competed with each other seems like a good area to hit up. The Volley and Multi-Shot niches were very similar, which resulted in the latter being dead. We wanted to pick one and we though Multi-Shot felt more huntery and less "clunky" (to use a favorite Wow forums term).

Do consider that you won't be AE'ing yourselves through Cataclysm content the way you do currently. When you do need to AE, hunters will have the tools to do so. In situations where you do have to AE, you are probably not also trying to CC. When you're back to the level of trivializing lower level content, nobody is going to say "Don't bring a hunter. Their AE spam isn't spammy enough." We don't consider easily breaking rogues out of stealth a good reason to keep Volley around.

I think that hits most of the reasonable concerns. I care much less about addressing the unreasonable ones.

As always, those of you whose sole contribution is to post very inane or derogatory things will be banned.

Man, have we come a long way from "AE is only for trash." (Source)

Paladin (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
One Man Army
Yes. Many of the problems we've had with Ret are of the "one man army" category, where a paladin can do a lot of damage, then go defensive and heal themselves up. We love the kit of the paladin who can heal as well as do damage, but it needs to be tightly controlled. Word of Glory gives us that control. We have the room to make the spell really powerful because we know its on a tight cooldown and you sacrifice dps to use it. We can't do that today with say Flash of Light, because once you can cast one strong FoL, you can cast a bunch of them until you go OOM (at which point you Judge or Divine Plea, and you're going again). Similarly, we can make Selfless Healer nearly overpowered because you can't use it on yourself and because even with it you're not going to out compete a Holy paladin in healing. If you can occasionally contribute to group healing in tight spots, then that's great. That's some utility you can provide. (Note: Don't oversell this as "I'll get brought to raids because of my healing.") (Source)

Class balance and RNG
That's the wrong view to take though. The equivalent would be "I'm balanced around getting a crit every swing, so when that doesn't happen, RNG screws me." You get a Templar's Verdict every 3 Crusader Strikes. Sometimes you get lucky and need fewer. You of course need to pay attention for when that happens and be able to react to it and alter your immediate plans. That right there is the element we think is most missing from today's Ret paladin. (Source)

Words of Glory
The amount it heals is most definitely balanced around how good it will be for Holy.
Those numbers don't have to be the same though. The new talent tree design affords us a lot more flexibility in that regard. Part of the reason Word of Glory is so useful to Holy is because it costs no mana. Ret doesn't really care about mana, because it comes and goes easily, but a Ret generally won't be able to sit there and queue up several Holy Lights in a row. They will be able to sometimes use a Word of Glory though. (Source)

New World of Warcraft Fan Wallpaper
The World of Warcraft Fan Wallpapers have been updated with a new wallpaper titled "Cataclysm" by Kenvd.


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