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by Published on 2010-09-09 06:39 AM

Cataclysm Credits - Concept Arts and Tier 11
The concept arts included in the Cataclysm Credits have been added to the game files and a couple of interesting concept arts have been added, including the very first preview of Tier 11 Armor. Just keep in mind that they're early concepts, but it's better than nothing!

Tier 11 Hunter

Tier 11 Warrior

Concept Arts

Sneak Peek: Troll & Worgen Druid Forms
It looks like the models I posted a few months ago were the final version. See below the blue post.
Originally Posted by Nethaera (Blue Tracker)
We've applied some finishing touches to the new cat and bear forms available to troll and worgen druids in World of Warcraft: Cataclysm. We’re excited to share them with you today. Have a look here.

The Fight for Gnomeregan & Echo Isles Q&A
Originally Posted by Lylirra (Blue Tracker)
It's great to see that so many of you are excited about these events! The battles for Gnomeregan and Echo Isles are important turning points for both the Gnomeregan Exiles and Darkspear trolls, and we're glad that players across all races and realms have answered the call to arms issued by your esteemed faction leaders, Geblin Mekkatorque and Vol'jin.

Now, onto your questions:

Q. What are the minimum level requirements for the Operation: Gnomeregan and Zalazane's Fall quest lines?
A. Your character will need to be at least level 75 to participate in the final battle. All previous quests in each faction's chain, though, should be open to character's level 5 and up.

Q. What would happen if a player were to complete one faction's quest line (say, Operation: Gnomeregan) on a character, receive the Feat of Strength, and then purchase a faction change? Would that character be able to complete the other faction's quest line and receive double the rewards?
A. Yes and no. To continue with the example provided above, if a character were to complete all the quests associated with Operation: Gnomeregan on an Alliance character, receive the corresponding quest reward and Feat of Strength, and then purchase a faction change, the quest reward and Feat of Strength would translate to their Horde equivalents, but the quests would not. This means that the character would have the opportunity to play through all the quests associated with Zalazane's Fall, if he or she wishes, but would not receive an additional Feat of Strength or be able to own both faction’s costume quest rewards * for doing so.

Faction changes affect characters in multiple ways, though, so be sure to review the full FAQ before getting started:

* Due to the fact that the costume quest reward will translate during a faction change, it’s currently possible for a player to earn two of them. They’d both be same version of the item, though, and would share the same cooldown.

Q. Will these events be available forever?
A. Like other holiday events, Operation: Gnomeregan and Zalazane's Fall will only be available for a limited time, so it's best to complete the quest lines as soon as possible!

Q. Players are standing on top of key quest NPCs and I'm unable to reach them. What can I do?
A. If you're finding it difficult to click on a specific NPC, the best course of action is to enable name plates by pressing Ctrl-V or zoom in your character's camera all the way. This will give you a different in-game perspective and should allow you to click on the NPC's name plate or its model without other characters or their mounts completely blocking access:

If you feel that any players are intentionally attempting to detract from the experience of others, then you may wish to contact in-game support.

Q. Why are these events so short in duration?
A. Both Operation: Gnomeregan and Zalazane's Fall are intended to be fun in-game events that allow players to experience the continuation of the Gnomeregan Exile and Darkspear troll storylines, and we think each quest line achieves just that. As several gnomes would argue, just because something is "short" doesn't mean it's not worthwhile!

[...] Alright, I've got a few more answers to your questions:

Q. Are Operation: Gnomeregan and Zalazane's Fall the only events that lead into the Cataclysm?
A. Not at all. It's only a taste of what's to come.

Q. I've encountered a few issues when completing these events. Are they being looked into?
A. Definitely. Our Quality Assurance department is aware of the reported issues and looking into them currently. In the meantime, our in-game support staff has created a post in the Customer Service forum about the matter ( and will be providing updates on the @BlizzardCS Twitter page.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment

Racial changes in Cataclysm
We're not going to overhaul the racials to the degree that we overhauled the talent trees. We are going to make a pass at them, so if you have specific concerns for Cataclysm now is a fine time to bring them up. In this case, specific feedback is more useful than "I think the way racials should work is a totally different way" designs. (Source)

Zalazane's Fall / Operation Gnomeregan Overcloaks not implemented on live (See Cataclysm Prologue Preview)
It is true that the cloak rewards had overcloak functionality when these events were up on the public test realms some months back. In the end we decided that implementing the cloaks in such a way that players could aesthetically change the cloak they're wearing could set a bad precedent. We like customization and flavor items, but we don't want to start implementing aesthetic items in the game which allow players to look however they want while keeping all the stats they want. We felt the overcloaks were breaking that barrier a little too much.

Can I ask why not? People have been clamoring for this sort of thing for ages, and many thought that this was the first step to allowing that. Now you're telling us it was a first step that you don't want to take?
We've been tossing around some other ideas with regard to gear customization, but we still want to make sure there are appropriate limitations on a system like this. The limited buff timer on the overcloak just wasn't enough considering it would mask any cloak of any level. We'll continue to explore ideas for fun aesthetic gear customization, but we didn't feel this was the proper introduction of this kind of system. (Source)

Dungeons too easy in WotLK
This is fairly accurate. Spell costs were more expensive when LK was in beta but we later backed off of it. That isn't the entire reason that the heroic dungeons and raids ended up a little easier than we intended. It was a combination of a lot of things: we got better at designing talents (fewer wasted points), glyphs offered a lot of additional player power, little things like the gathering skill buffs, most raid buffs going raid wide, every spec had access to mana-efficient AE, more survivability tools, specs that historically didn't raid much suddenly out there contributing their unique abilities, etc. etc. (Source)

Avoidance penalty in Icecrown
We added an avoidance penalty to Icecrown so that we could lower boss spike damage. It was still quite spikey. Now imagine would it would have been without those avoidance penalties. Bosses would have had to hit that much harder in order to compensate for missing so often. I even said at the time that a better long-term solution would be to boost health pools across the board (even for PvP), but that was such a big change that we worried it would take too many patches to get right. (Source)

Blizzcon Soundalike contest
The Soundalike Contest will not be held this year, and potentially in no future years. We have some things planned for the stage show that take up some additional time, and just due to the lukewarm reception of this particular contest, it was removed from this year's lineup. (Source)

Paladin (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Lack of AE Healing in WotLK
On the paladin issue, our LK model was that healers were still pretty specialized. You want a paladin for tank healing and you want a Holy priest or Resto druid for AE healing. We thought that paladins had enough tools to heal when they were the only healer (i.e. in 5 player dungeons), and that was generally true, though paladin players did have trouble with heroic Loken early on. Since paladins didn't need to solo heal raids and since we didn't want to encourage raids to bring 2 paladins for their 2 healers, we thought that was sufficient. In Cataclysm we are backing off of that even more and trying to make all the healers more well rounded. (Source)
by Published on 2010-09-07 05:43 PM

Update - Added today's blue posts (well, blue post) at the end of the post.

Zalazane's Fall and Operation Gnomeregan now on live servers
The first part of the Cataclysm prologue just started on live servers. Alliance player will find the Operation Gnomeregan event in Dun Morogh and Horde players should go to Durotar for Zalazane's fall. See the quest links below for more information.

Important - The events are fairly short and entertaining, I really suggest that you go play them on live servers instead of checking the screenshots.

Zalazane's Fall Screenshots
This is a very fun questline, it's not too long and it's a pretty nice introduction to what will happen in Cataclysm! For more details on the quests please read:

Operation Gnomeregan Screenshots
This is a very fun questline, it's not too long and it's a pretty nice introduction to what will happen in Cataclysm! For more details on the quests please read:

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment

Cataclysm Dungeons difficulty
The normal dungeons require a little more crowd control than many LK players are typically used to, but they aren't intended to be brutal. You shouldn't need to farm a lot of gear before stepping into one. Keep in mind that feedback is going to be all over the place in a beta. Some players are heading into dungeons they know nothing about and getting frustrated when someone can't immediately explain the boss mechanics to them. Some just have no sense in investment since this isn't their "real" character (such irony). Some of the bosses are overtuned and some of the class abilities are undertuned at this stage. Because Uldum and Twilight don't have quest rewards yet, there are also some folks who are just really undergeared. Half your glyphs probably don't work. The new enchants aren't readily available. And so it goes. That sort of thing will all get ironed out over the next several weeks.

You shouldn't have huge mana problems in a normal dungeon. Your middle heal should get you through most of it just fine. You'll have to use more of your emergency heals in the heroics and raids, and you'll also be expected to gear up a little more for the heroics and raids. In Burning Crusade, players went and finished the Shadowmoon quest lines or got their reps to Exalted or maxed out their trade skills in order to have the best gear available for the heroics and raids. That is our model for Cataclysm. (Source)
by Published on 2010-09-07 07:23 AM

The Vortex Pinnacle - Skywall 5-Man Video
TotalBiscuit released a long (28 minutes) video of the new Vortex Pinnacle 5-man instance located in Uldum/Skywall.

Cataclysm Pets - Armadillo and Seagull
2 Companion pets have been added to the game in the latest beta build, the Rutsberg Seagull and the Armadillo. The texture on the armadillo seems to be a little low res but keep in mind that the pet is fairly small.

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Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment

LVL 85 Dungeons too hard?
It's not quite that extreme. The problem currently is that some players are tackling Uldum or Twilight Highlands in level 83 gear, or worse, their LK epics (just had to throw that in there ). You will probably want a good mix of level 84 and 85 gear before doing the level 85 dungeons, and certainly the heroics. Eloderung says that he or she now has a decent mix of dungeon gear so the quest gear issue should be skewing things less. There are still overtuned or undertuned bosses and abilities for us to contend with though. (Source)

6% vs. 10% spellpower in Cataclysm
The 10% spell power isn't offered by a ton of specs (nor are there any other specs that we want to add it to), but the buff makes a really big difference to casters. The 6% buff is there so we could make sure you weren't totally without any kind of buff if you lacked one of the 10% guys. (Source)

Mastery Stat
Well, they are shiny and new and pretty much give you exactly what you want, so that response isn't too surprising. It's good that mastery is attractive and fun. We just don't want non-mastery gear to be viewed as junk the way some classes view some stats on Live. (Source)

Spamming the same spell
Right. It's a skill curve thing. If there is a right time to use something and a big penalty for doing something at the wrong time, then there is a bigger difference between good and less good players. If you can pretty much do something whenever, then there is less to learn about your class, less to perfect and ultimately less reward in investing in understanding the character. (Source)

Paladin (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Holy Light / Flash of Light spamming
We just don't agree that it worked. What generally happened was either the set bonuses, glyphs and librams all aligned to make either Flash of Light the best spell or Holy Light. In rare cases we got lucky and paladins could choose to gear either for a FoL or HL spam, but they were still choosing one spell over the other. They really weren't using a particular spell for a particular job, so the toolbox felt small and they were hitting the same buttons all the time.

I can almost promise you that a Holy paladin in Cataclysm will use Holy Shock, Word of Glory, Flash of Light, Holy Light, Divine Light, Holy Radiance and Light of Dawn on every challenging dungeon or raid run. That sounds a lot more fun than spamming Holy Light with the occasional Holy Shock on cooldown. (Source)

Mana costs
Mana needs to matter more. Ret (and Prot) generally need to be able to hit all of "their" buttons without being resource constrained, but then should only have enough mana to situationally use things like Holy Light, Exorcism or (untalented) Consecrate.

It's fine to cast one Exorcism at range to pull or something, but it's not something we generally want you doing outside of Art of War procs. We're pretty reluctant to put a cooldown back on the spell though. (Source)

AE Healing
We just don't believe the healing situation and the AE healing situation in particular is as dire as many of you are suggesting. We balance the encounters around the class capabilities, so if many groups are struggling on certain ones, those will be adjusted accordingly. We generally don't give classes new abilities because they have trouble on certain fights. If you're finding that you are just constantly behind the curve on every encounter, even the trash, then you are probably doing something wrong (attempting these dungeons undergeared is something we are seeing a lot) or your class has some kind of systemic bug that is affecting all of the healing you do.

Overall, the dungeons probably will end up more challenging than they were in Lich King. Even if we eventually end up with 10 minute chain pulling 5-player dungeons in Deathwing gear, there is no need to start out that way. (Source)

Holy Mastery
Incidentally, we looked at mastery for Holy paladins today and decided we were happy, for now, with the power it offers, so reforge away if you think that makes you more powerful. We might always tweak things in the future. (Source)

Changing Light of Dawn to only use Holy Power
We thought about a similar implementation a lot, but just worried that would make Light of Dawn harder to use. With a long cooldown, you at least can save it until you think you need it. Sitting on 3 Holy Power (and being unable to use Word of Glory during that time) might be brutal. (Source)

Haste/Crit/Overhealing in Cataclysm
That's an interesting perspective. Typically LK paladins tell us that they like haste because it lets them get a heal out *right now* before a tank dies, but don't like crit because it often overheals. To use a tired cliche, it did feel a lot like Whack-a-mole because you needed to heal ASAP but how hard you healed someone wasn't nearly as important. FoL could often bring someone to full and a HL crit would be tons of overhealing. (I am talking only about the stats in how they affect healing per se, not extra effects like Illumination.) In Cataclysm you won't overheal as much (making the free healing from crits more useful) but you won't be in constant fear of the tank dying in one GCD (making haste less useful). (Source)

Warrior (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Secondary effect on Heroic Leap
Adding a secondary effect to Heroic Leap, like a Thunder Clap or letting you get out of roots might be a good role for a glyph. We don't like to glyph new high level abilities immediately because then players don't appreciate what the glyph does for them, since they have never used the ability unglyphed. It's something we could consider for a future patch. (Source)
by Published on 2010-09-06 09:26 AM

Cataclysm Dungeon - Updated Loot List
More loot appeared on beta realms and we now have a good idea of what to expect in level 85 dungeons in normal mode. I'm not an expert in theorycrafting but I'm pretty sure that something like Wild Hammer will make you unequip your Shadowmourne. (Reminder: No screenshots yet, models aren't implemented)

333DaggerMelee DPSOne-HandWindwalker Blade
333DaggerSpellMain HandModgud's Blade
333MaceTankOne-HandMace of Transformed Bone
333MaceMeleeTwo-HandWild Hammer
333Off-HandSpellOff-handBook of Origination
333ShieldTankOff HandBulwark of the Primordial Mound
333StaffHealTwo-HandSoul Releaser
333StaffSpellTwo-HandStaff of Siphoned Essences
333SwordMeleeOne-HandSun Strike
333SwordSpellMain HandBlade of the Burning Sun
333ThrownPhysicalThrownSlashing Thorns
333WandSpell, HealRangedWand of Untainted Power
333PlateTankHandsFingers of Light
333PlateMeleeChestBreastplate of the Risen Land
333PlateTankShoulderEarthshape Pauldrons
333PlateMeleeWaistBelt of the Forgemaster
333PlateTankWristArmguards of Unearthly Light
333PlateHealLegsLegguards of Noon
333PlateHealWristBracers of Umbral Mending
333MailPhysicalFeetRed Scale Boots
333MailPhysicalHeadWildhammer Riding Helm
333MailPhysicalShoulderBloodpetal Mantle
333MailSpell, HealFeetDark Iron Chain Boots
333MailSpell, HealWaistBelt of Petrified Tears
333LeatherPhysicalChestVest of Misshapen Hides
333LeatherPhysicalWaistRed Beam Cord
333LeatherPhysicalWristPoison Fang Bracers
333LeatherSpell, HealChestCursed Skardyn Vest
333LeatherSpell, HealFeetAwakening Footfalls
333LeatherSpell, HealWaistUnderworld Cord
333ClothHealFeetHekatic Slippers
333ClothHealLegsCurse-Tainted Leggings
333ClothHealWristCrimsonborne Bracers
333ClothSpellChestRobes of Rampant Growth
333ClothSpellHeadCrown of Enfeebled Bodies
333ClothSpellLegsLegwraps of Astral Rain
333CloakTankBackShroud of Dark Memories
333CloakHealBackSolar Wind Cloak
333CloakHealBackAzureborne Cloak
333FingerMeleeFingerNova Band
333FingerTankFingerTemple Band
333FingerMeleeFingerUmbriss Band
333FingerMeleeFingerCircle of Bone
333FingerPhysicalFingerRing of Blinding Stars
333FingerPhysicalFingerRing of Dun Algaz
333FingerHealFingerBand of Life Energy
333FingerSpellFingerBand of Rays
333FingerSpellFingerAbandoned Dark Iron Ring
333NeckTankNeckDarkhowl Amulet
333NeckMeleeNeckSeedling Pod
333NeckMeleeNeckMouth of the Earth
333NeckSpellNeckCharm of the Muse
333TrinketTankTrinketThrongus's Finger
333TrinketHealTrinketBlood of Isiset
333TrinketHealTrinketCorrupted Egg Shell
333TrinketMeleeTrinketRight Eye of Rajh
333TrinketMeleeTrinketMark of Khardros
333TrinketPhysicalTrinketLeft Eye of Rajh
333TrinketPhysicalTrinketSkardyn's Grace
333TrinketSpellTrinketAnhuur's Hymnal
333TrinketSpellTrinketGale of Shadows

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment

The problem with downranking that we hated, and the reason we killed it, wasn't because players were being clever by using cheaper heals when they needed a smaller heal. That's good gameplay and the kind of thing the new model should reward. The part of downranking that was broken, was that the coefficients matter so much more than the base points that you could maintain mana forever by casting a heal that was only slightly less effective. That wasn't gaming the numbers. That was breaking them. (Source)

Paladin (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Healing as ... retribution
I said holy gear in a ret spec. And why would the heals be small? In a raid environment, the ret spec could have as much as 2000 more sp than a similarly geared holy paladin because of Sheath of Light and various buffs to AP. This alone would show how little scaling of healing spells the holy tree provides.
We'll look into it and make sure it's not viable. We've certainly had cases in the past where the conversion factors that let Ret not be terrible at healing look really attractive to someone actually wearing healing gear. (Source)

Warrior (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Heroic Leap
This ability has a lot of history because we tried it once before. For the Cataclysm version, we received a lot of feedback originally that Heroic Leap just didn't distinguish itself enough from Charge etc. any more. This is a world with Juggernaut and Warbringer after all. We discussed that feedback and understood where warriors were coming from, so we redesigned it so that players could choose where they would leap to. We think the current implementation has lot of different uses. No, it can't get you over canyons or up to ledges, but how often will those case legitimately arise? The potential exploits were the ability that unfettered would be enormous, and reducing those is what let us offer Heoic Leap as it is in the first place. It's a useful ability now. We can experiment with visual effect and height and that sort of thing. I understand from reading this thread that there are players who would design a different ability were they in our shoes. That's fine. This is a subjective business. (Source)

Slam is a controversial ability for sure, but we know there are Arms warriors who considered the height of skill of their class to be when they had to line up the Slam swing time in between their Mortal Strikes. It's not for everyone, for sure, but with Improved Slam and Bloodsurge and being able to move, it really isn't asking too much of you. Yeah you'll screw it up sometimes, but it won't be a catastrophic dps loss when you do.

We've seen just a ton of feedback in the past few weeks on lots of different abilities for different classes that essentially comes down to "X is too hard to use." We think overall that WoW's combat is pretty forgiving. We really don't think this is the time where we need to be making everything much harder to screw up. Simple is good. Confusing is bad. But abilities or rotations that are challenging are good for the game to a point. (Source)

MMO Report
Someone stole Casey for the week, but the MMO Report is still around!

Dark Legacy Comics #254 and Teh Gladiators #164 + #165 are out.

by Published on 2010-09-05 10:17 AM

Stormwind Improvements - New Textures
Stormwind has been improved once again in the latest beta build and I have to admit, the new textures on the floor look really nice.

Cathedral Square

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Dwarven District

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Trade District

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Old Town

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Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment

Leveling makes you "weaker" in Cataclysm
Your primary stats go up, but your combat ratings go down. The reason for this is that those ratings convert to percentages. If you started with say 50% crit chance, and then gained a level and your new gear had say +4% crit chance instead of +2% crit chance, then you'd quickly get to 100% crit and stay there. This was the reason we implemented combat ratings in the first place. (You can blame Blackhand's Breadth.)

This particularly gets to be a problem when you reach max level. The reason is because you are going to go through several tiers of gear without increasing your character level, so we need to have enough space in the numbers for them to increase. We figure out what the highest say crit and haste chance the game can handle and then work backwards giving each tier a meaningful upgrade (or getting new gear won't be fun) and that determines the combat ratings on the starting gear.

We definitely understand the confusion / weird perception issues this causes and we've talked about some ways to completely revamp the game's combat equations so that we didn't need to use percentage-based stats influenced by ratings with diminishing returns. That is too large a change for Cataclysm, but something we might do in the future (when we aren't also tackling talent and glyph revamps).

Also remember that if you are leveling to 85, you are skipping over a lot of potential quest rewards that you can't get yet. The item leaps among levels are pretty large at level 80-85, which we had to do to make the upgrades feel meaningful. (Imagine the alternatives where you could go to Twilight Highlands directly from Icecrown and do okay.) Once those quest items are in, you'll be more powerful as you level. (Source)

Tuning abilities numbers
A lot of you are focusing on numbers, which are just such easy things to tweak at this stage that we haven't turned our attention to them yet. If a "fun" ability for you is synonymous with "one that hits hard" then what you find fun is liable to be random and switch from build to build.

We have adjusted mob health and damage quite a bit in the beta and we're going to continue to do so. In LK, quest mobs got to be a bit of a joke, such that everyone was used to killing clouds of them with ease. We're trying to return to a world where you can generally handle one, but might want to think about using some of your crowd control or emergency buttons when you get an extra one or two. (Again, that's the intent. We're still adjusting things to get there.) (Source)

Uldum and Twilight Highlands are hard!
Unfortunately, this is the most salient point in the original post. Everything from mana cost to tank damage are designed around having the correct gear. Doing an 85 zone in 83 gear is much, much harder than doing a 75 zone in 73 gear. Why? Because with only 5 levels, we made the level to level jump in item stats really high. That also means mobs also jump up a lot in power from level 73 to 75.

Almost every "Wow, things are hard" thread I have read on this and other forums are a direct result of not having Uldum and Twilight gear yet. We thought long and hard about whether it was a good idea to bump the level cap without that gear in place. In the end, we thought it was worth getting feedback on the quest design and some of the encounter design. But encounter balance is enormously dependent on having the right gear. Just keep that in mind. Things will feel better when you have ugrades available. (Source)

Healing throughput
Throughput won't go up enormously, but it will go up. Regen will go up. Most importantly, tank health and total dps will go up a lot. You won't be able to top anyone off in a GCD, but nobody will die so quickly that you'll need to. In all of our dungeon tests, tanks don't die in 2 or 3 hits unless they are doing something very wrong in the encounter. (Source)

Death Knight (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Dark Simulacrum
There' still some polish needed on Dark Simulacrum. We are going to try and let it affect everything we possibly can, but there have to be some limitations. Copying pets and the like is just something we can't handle really well. We also need to make sure that some effects have a duration. It's probably okay to copy Shadowform, but Shadowform itself has no duration and the DK version needs to. (Source)

Paladin (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Hammer of the Righteous
I think if Hammer of the Righteous went back to its old design of hitting 3 targets, you'd see the forums swarming with paladins in a few weeks demanding some way to AE, such as... removing the cooldown on Consecrate again. There is no way to change the Prot paladin rotation up without changing some core abilities, and we are committed to changing the Prot rotation up.

We have some room to experiment with the proc rates for Grand Crusader, but remember that the more often it procs, the weaker it has to hit. (Source)

Tanking in Cataclysm
Generally, you should use Inquisition when AE tanking, since it will boost the Holy portion of Hammer of the Righteous as well as Consecrate. You should use Shield of the Righteous when fighting single (or perhaps 2-3) targets, because it's going to hit a lot harder.

Beyond that, you have a few options. You can glyph Avenger's Shield to focus on one target if you'd like. You can switch to Shield of the Righteous even on group targets when you get Sacred Duty procs. You can use Grand Crusader procs to focus on the targets you are already in melee with, or use Avenger's Shield on additional targets to help hold threat. Consecrate isn't the "threat glue" is used to be, nor does it have 100% up time, so you're going to have some choices about when and where you use it. (Source)

Words of Glory
The main strength of Word of Glory is its cost. No matter how strained mana might get, you're always going to have ample usage of an instant, free heal. (Source)

Healing Mods Talents
It's difficult to offer talents that mod the other heals. If you have a talent that makes Flash of Light more cost effective or Divine Light faster, then those aren't really filling those niches anymore. We had a lot of problems like this in the past where a combination of talents, glyphs or set bonuses made Flash of Light or Holy Light the obvious heal for paladins, and the other one just died. We want to use all 3 of the cast-time healing spells in Cataclysm, but we're offering the most gameplay around Holy Shock and Word of Glory, because those are what make Holy paladins feel the most different from other healers. (Source)

Beacon of Light
As others have pointed out, Beacon just can't stay as "I heal at 200% effectiveness" in the Cataclysm healing model. It will still give you extra healing, particularly with the Tower of Radiance component. (Source)

AE Healing
We're not worried about the AE healing situation. In Lich King there were situations, especially in raids, where healers were called upon to instantly heal multiple targets at once or someone was going to die. With the larger health pools in Cataclysm, those situations are just going to be very rare. AE damage, and sometimes raid-wide AE auras, will still exist, but your tools are more than adequate to handle them. No, Light of Dawn may not take 5+ targets from 50% damage to 0% damage, but it also doesn't need to. You'll have time to top them off with single target heals, or just wait until the next AE heal is available. We just don't think spammable AE heals are that fun. If we wanted them to be a big part of the game, we'd need to make actual AE healing rotations that did more. The LK scenarios of hitting Wild Growth and Circle of Healing on cooldown are not something we want to go back to (plus, we've increased those cooldowns). (Source)

Healing and Mana management
Right. Another way to think of it is Heal, Holy Light and Healing Wave are essentially your heal autoattacks. They won't do anything too impressive, but you can essentially do them forever. (Source)

Holy Mastery Shield
The paladin mastery should definitely replace a lower shield with a larger one. We're a bit hesitant to just let you continually stack the shield up to its max size. That feels more annoying if anything because then paladins would feel compelled to spam heals on a tank before the pull so they could start with a max strength shield and then drink to restore the mana investment. (Source)

Guardian of Ancient Kings
The Guardian of Ancient Kings shouldn't take damage or die. (Source)

As far as where things are supposed to be, we don't want Exorcism to be the largest source of your damage. There were a couple of bugs with the spell implementation (double dipping on AP for instance) and we also recently decided to change Ret's mastery to no longer affect Holy damage, since it was just propping up Exorcism too much. (Source)

Templar's Verdict/Divine Storm without 3 Holy Power
We think situationally you will want to use TV or Divine Storm with less than 3 stacks. However, if it's very efficient to do so, then players will never wait for 3 stacks because having 3 smaller hits is more valuable than having 1 large hit of the same total damage. (Source)

Priest (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Griefing friendly players with Leap of Faith
Leap of Faith needs to be constrained to your group only. (Source)

Shaman (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
In my experience, every time I read one of these "lack of focus" or "we don't have a role" threads, it's nearly always because the players are looking for something very different in the class than what it offers and are trying to steer things in a different direction. As such, we generally don't get much useful feedback out of these "existential crisis" kinds of discussions.

Think really hard about what it is you're asking for. Are you trying to turn Enhancement into a Fury warrior? Are you trying to make a true hybrid that fills many roles at once? Do you just want to be the superhero that always saves your party? Or are you just busting with spell ideas that you'd like to see get implemented? Try and stick with the details and not the big picture from 10,000 feet high. What is the problem you're trying to solve? The intent of the spec design isn't something you need to solve. Figuring out the rough edge that don't feel right is where you can be more helpful.

Enhancement is a spec designed around combining melee weapons strikes with spells. They also have totems and weapon enchants. Almost all of the talents in the tree support that direction. If half of your talents were trying to turn you into a healer and half of them were trying to turn you into a tank or something, then I'd understand the "no consistent direction" feedback. But that's not what the tree does at all. Stormstrike boosts weapon and spell damage. That is the tree in a nutshell. Other talents boost melee damage or spell damage or both. There are a few survival-oriented talents that should have even more use in PvE in the Cataclysm environment, but are still optional.

Feedback on which abilities you like or dislike or talents you find useful or not useful is totally appropriate and appreciated. The whole "we're adrift at sea without a direction" nearly always comes across as QQ at best or "here is my pet list of talents" at worst (whether it was intended to or not) so my advice is just to avoid it.

I'm not trying to shoot down the feedback. I'm trying to steer it into a format that is more likely to produce the kind of results that I sense you're really looking for. (Source)

Warrior (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator / Beta Skills/Talents)
Icon Highlights
The icon highlights for things like Overpower and Revenge need a little more polish so that they don't stay lit all the time or light up during a cooldown. (Source)

Colossus Smash
Colossus Smash is indeed still bugged and will make targets harder to kill. It required new tech to get this effect working at all, and it's going to take some time before it is working correctly. (Source)

Heroic Leap
The Thunder Clap portion of Heroic Leap was the subject of much derision on this very forum. If you liked it, you should have stuck up for it then. It's gone now.

That sounds harsh, which isn't my intention, but it is really, really common on these forums to see a concerted effort among some players to say "Change X" and then when we do, other players come out of the woodwork to say "But we liked X!" I can't suggest a great solution to that except to pay attention to the kinds of discussions that are happening, and chime in if you disagree with something strongly. (Source)

Damage Tuning
We aren't focused on numbers tuning yet, so comments like "RB doesn't hit very hard" or "SMF doesn't compete with TG" just aren't going to be terribly useful posts at this stage. If your measurement of "fun" is "hits for big numbers" then you aren't going to be able to provide beta feedback that helps the developers much. (Source)

Tooltips not showing "true" damage
We'll make sure the tooltips reflect the actual damage being done. It's hard to know without looking at each spell individually whether the damage is wrong or the description. (Source)

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