World of Warcraft News and Raiding Strategies RSS Feed

by Published on 2014-10-13 04:00 AM

Update (10:15 PM EST): Added some class tuning hotfixes.
Update (9:30 PM EST): Added the official notes and changes from the last set of notes.

Patch 6.0.2 Live This Week
The Warlords of Draenor systems patch will be going live this week and it brings a lot of changes! Make sure your Background Downloader has downloaded the files so you aren't stuck waiting on patch day.

This patch will convert your install to using the new CASC format, which can be a time consuming process. Be sure to defrag before and after the install if you are not using a SSD. The free version of Defraggler is a useful tool, as it can defrag just the WoW files if you are in a hurry.

  • New Character Models - Often requested, finally here!
  • Stat Changes - The stat squish is finally here. Yes, you can still solo old raids.
  • Item Changes - Reforging, Hit, Expertise, Dodge, Parry, all gone!
  • Auction House Changes - The Alliance, Horde, and Neutral auction houses have all been merged. The BMAH has moved to Draenor.
  • Currency Changes - Justice and Valor? Gone! You can still buy most items (other than Heirlooms) for gold.
  • Toy Box - The toy box is here to hold your novelty items and free up some bag space.
  • Reagent Bank - More storage space for profession reagents has been added. Most also stack up to 200 now as well.
  • Void Storage Size Increase - Another Void Storage tab has been added. Try not to fill it up in a week.
  • Icy Veins Class Guides - These detailed guides have everything you need to know about Patch 6.0.2.
  • Class Changes - List of class changes and short overview guides.
  • Guild Changes - Guild levels? Gone! Most perks? Gone!
  • Group Finder - The Raid Browser is gone and the much improved Group Finder is here.
  • Siege of Orgrimmar Changes - SoO is giving out Heirloom weapons and now uses the new Warlords raid size system.
  • Level 90 Upper Blackrock Spire - You can grab some item level 550 gear and preview this dungeon for the next month.
  • Blasted Lands Quests - The Iron Horde have invaded the Blasted Lands and have a short quest line for you.
  • New Login Screen - The Dark Portal is back in this new login screen.
  • Arena Skirmishes - Proving that persistence pays off, the ongoing request for skirmishes has been granted. Thank Holinka!
  • UI Improvements - The default UI has received several upgrades, including Raid and Battleground specific graphical settings.
  • Darker Nights - A few areas such as Redridge and and Elwynn Forest are now actually dark at night.
  • Old World Dungeon Revamps - Blackfathom Deeps, Razorfen Downs, and Razorfen Kraul have been updated.
  • Undelete Character Feature - You can now restore characters above level 50 forever.
  • Server Responsiveness Improvements - The sever now processes events much faster, which should make gameplay feel even more responsive.
  • Anti-Aliasing - MSAA had to go away to move the client technology forward, so we only have FXAA and CMAA now.
  • Addons - As always, we need your help collecting data from in game by installing the WoWDB addon. Many other addons are also already updated for Patch 6.0.2.

World of Warcraft Patch 6.0.2: The Iron Tide
The official notes are here! For those of you that have been following along during beta, we summarized the changes from the previous set of notes here. Everyone else should take a look at the full notes!

Class Tuning Hotfixes
Originally Posted by Celestalon (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
As you may have noticed, we don't patch note damage/healing tuning number changes. Normally, datamining catches most of these changes, so theorycrafters know when to retest things. They only are able to do this when we make new builds. However, we've hotfixed some more tuning changes in, since the last beta build. The client should reflect these changes in tooltips, however datamining likely will not. As such, I'm providing that info here. Once we go live tomorrow, we'll use the normal hotfix blog for this sort of thing.

New Character Models
After asking for updated character models for years, they are finally here! (Except for Blood Elves, which are coming in a later patch)

If you don't like your new face, you can change it at the barber. If you don't like the new models, you can switch to the old ones in the options.

Stat Changes
  • The stat squish is finally here. Numbers will be much smaller, but combat should feel the same. Yes, you can still solo old raids.
  • Health was not squished as much for PvP reasons.
  • Spell Haste %, Melee Haste %, and Ranged Haste % have been merged into a universal Haste %.
  • Spell Crit %, Melee Crit %, and Ranged Crit % have been merged into a universal Crit %.
  • Dodge and Parry where changed
    • The amount of Dodge gained per point of Agility has been reduced by 25%.
    • The amount of Parry gained per point of Strength has been reduced by 25%.
  • Attack Power was changed:
    • Agility or Strength now grants 1 Attack Power (down from 2). All other sources of Attack Power now grant half as much as before.
    • Weapon Damage values on all weapons have been reduced by 50%.
    • Attack Power now increases Weapon Damage at a rate of 1 DPS per 3.5 Attack Power (up from 1 DPS per 14 Attack Power).
    • Attack Power, Spell Power, or Weapon Damage now affect the entire healing or damage throughput of player spells.
  • Cirtical Strike was changed:
    • Agility and Intellect no longer provide Critical Strike
    • Every class has a 5% base crit chance.
    • Rogues, all Hunters, Feral and Guardian Druids, Brewmaster and Windwalker Monks, and Enhancement Shaman have an extra 10% chance to crit.
  • Hit and Expertise were removed:
    • Hit and Expertise bonuses on all items and item enhancements (gems, enchants, etc.) have been converted into Critical Strike, Haste, or Mastery.
    • All characters now have a 100% chance to hit, 0% chance to be dodged, 3% chance to be parried, and 0% chance for glancing blows, when fighting creatures up to 3 levels higher (bosses included).
    • Tanking specializations receive an additional 3% reduction in chance to be parried. Tank attacks now have a 0% chance to be parried vs. creatures up to 3 levels higher.
    • Creatures that are 4 or more levels higher than the character still has a chance to avoid attacks in various ways, to discourage fighting enemies that are much stronger.
    • Dual Wielding still imposes a 19% chance to miss, to balance it with two-handed weapon use.

Item Changes
  • Almost all flying mounts are now also ground mounts.
  • Access to Ordos no longer requires a legendary cloak.
  • Season 15 Prideful (Item Level 550) items should be available for honor.
  • The direct benefit to combat perks from professions have been removed, such as the tailoring cloak enchants.
  • Reforging is gone and all items have been reverted to their original state.
  • Hit and Expertise have been removed from items and replaced with Critical Strike, Haste, or Mastery. You no longer have to worry about being hit capped!
  • Dodge and Parry have been replaced with Bonus Armor. If an item had both Dodge and Parry on it, it has been replaced with an additional useful secondary stat.
  • These changes have been applied to gems, enchants, food, and flasks. For example, hit gems are becoming crit gems.
  • New secondary stats have been added and are on a few items:
    • Bonus Armor - Increases Armor and Attack Power for tanking specializations.
    • Multistrike - Grants a chance for spells and abilities to fire up to 2 additional times, at 30% effectiveness (both damage and healing).
    • Versatility - Increases damage, healing, and absorption done. Reduces damage taken.

AskMrRobot Updating
AskMrRobot should be fully updated and ready to go on Tuesday with a new UI. Reforging may be gone, but gear optimization is still a part of the game.

As an added bonus, the Best in Bags feature will be free this week, which should help you figure out which gear that you have is the best after reforges are undone.

Unfortunately it appears that the API team was not as prepared, as they are predicting API troubles with the new patch until Warlords release. If there are API issues, you can import your character with the AMR Addon as a manual import.

Merged Auction House
Players on the less populated faction will no longer have as much trouble finding things on the auction house, as Patch 6.0.2 merges the Alliance, Horde, and Neutral auction houses into one for each realm.

Black Market Auction House
The Black Market Auction House has relocated to Draenor and the Pandaria location has been retired.

Currency Changes

Toy Box
The Toy Box is a collection of most of the toy items on your account. You can find a list of toys on the WoWDB PTR site.

  • The toy box is on the collections tab, next to the mounts and pets tab.
  • Items in the toy box are available account wide.
  • Only one copy of an item can be added to your toy box, so all of the others will have to be deleted.
  • You can set toys as your favorite so that they appear at the start of the list.
  • Toys that you haven't collected yet will list a source.
  • You can filter toys by source and name.
  • Some toys that can no longer be obtained aren't listed under Not Collected, but if you have them you can add them to the toy box.

Name Points Reward Category
Having A Ball Collect 50 toys.
Toy Box
The Toymaster Collect 150 toys.
10Toy Box
Tons of Toys Collect 100 toys.
Toy Box
Toying Around Collect 25 toys.
Toy Box

Reagent Bank
Patch 6.0.2 adds another tab to your regular bank that costs 100 to unlock and has 98 slots to store profession reagents. Keep in mind that profession reagents will now form much larger stacks, with many stacking to 200. You can craft with reagents from the Reagent Bank no matter where you are.

Void Storage Size Increase
Patch 6.0.2 increases the size of Void Storage, adding a second tab with the same number of slots as the first.

Icy Veins Class Guides
Our friends over at Icy Veins are just finishing up the Patch 6.0.2 updates to their excellent class guides.

Class Changes
Several of the forum members and mods have put together brief guides to help ease the transition to the new patch, so a big thanks to them!
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion

Talent Changes
While you won't have access to Level 100 talents, all of the other changes are going live with the patch.

Guild Changes
Guild levels have been removed for Warlords of Draenor, along with some of the perks that they provided. This includes the Cash Flow perk, which was causing players to form guilds and spam invite others to take advantage of the perk.

Every guild now offers the same perks. Many of the perks that were removed are just applied to everyone now, even if they aren't in a guild. A list of the remaining perks is below.

Name Description
Mount Up Increases speed while mounted by 10%. Not active in Battlegrounds or Arenas.
Hasty Hearth Reduces the cooldown on your Hearthstone by 15 minutes.
The Quick and the Dead Increases health gained when resurrected by 50% and increases movement speed while dead by 10%. Does not function in combat or while in a Battleground or Arena.
Guild Mail In-game mail sent between guild members now arrives instantly.
Mobile Banking Summons a Guild Chest that allows access to your guild bank for 5 min. Only guild members with guild reputation of friendly and above are allowed to use a Guild Chest.
Mass Resurrection Brings all dead party and raid members back to life with 35% health and 35% mana. A player may only be resurrected by this spell once every 10 minutes. Cannot be cast in combat or while in a battleground or arena.

Group Finder
This patch also removes the old Raid Browser that got a temporary fix for Patch 5.4 and replaces it with a real Group Finder.

  • Creating a group first requires you to pick a category: Questing, Dungeons, Scenarios, Raids (MoP), Raids (Legacy), Arena Skirmishes, Battlegrounds, or Custom.
    • Questing: Allows you to select the continent and zone
    • Dungeons: Allows you to select random or a specific dungeon, as well as the difficulty.
    • Scenarios: Allows you to select the scenario and difficulty.
    • Raids - Allows you to select the raid and difficulty.
    • Skirmishes - Allows you to select the size (2v2 or 3v3)
  • After selecting the activity, you can add a title, description, minimum item level (your own or lower only), and voice chat.
  • When browsing groups, you can see the number of players of each role in the group.
  • When applying to a group, you can include a note to the leader.
  • When in a group, you can see a list of everyone's role and item level.
  • When someone applies to your group, you can see their Proving Grounds achievements.

Siege of Orgrimmar Changes
Siege of Orgrimmar is giving out Heirloom weapons and has been converted to the new Warlords of Draenor raid size system.

  • Your first heirloom weapon drop per difficulty is now guaranteed. These weapons will scale up while leveling and won't be replaced until at least level 100, so be sure to grab some for yourself and alts!
  • The Warlords of Draenor raid size system will be applied to Siege of Orgrimmar:
    • There are now four difficulties: Raid Finder, Normal (was Flex), Heroic (was Normal), and Mythic (was Heroic).
    • Normal and Heroic will scale from 10 to 30 players. Raid Finder can also scale down if players drop group.
    • Mythic will be a fixed size of 20 players.
    • Each difficulty has its own weekly lockout.
    • Raid Finder, Normal, and Heroic have a loot based lockout, which means you can kill bosses as many times as you would like, but you will only get loot in each difficulty once a week. The amount of loot that drops scales to the number of people eligible for loot, so you can't game the system.
    • Mythic difficulty has an ID based lockout, similar to how Heroic lockouts have worked previously. You are locked to one raid ID for the week.
  • The Ahead of the Curve 10 and 25 achievements for killing Normal Garrosh are no longer be obtainable. These rewarded the Kor'kron War Wolf mount.
  • The Cutting Edge 10 and 25 achievements for killing Heroic Garrosh are also no longer obtainable. These achievement had no reward.
  • The Kor'kron Juggernaut mount that drops from Heroic Garrosh isn't going away, but after Warlords is live it will be a rare drop instead of guaranteed.
  • You can queue for Dragon Soul LFR once again, but there is no matchmaking. You must form your own group and travel to Auridormi in the Caverns of Time to queue.

OpenRaid Updated
If you want to schedule a Siege of Orgrimmar run to get your Garrosh heirlooms, OpenRaid is ready with many groups already listed for Tuesday.

Level 90 Upper Blackrock Spire
There is a special Level 90 version of the revamped Upper Blackrock Spire available for players during Patch 6.0.2. The loot is item level 550, which is better than Flex Siege of Orgrimmar gear that hasn't been upgraded yet. There will be an item level restriction in place, but the dungeon is tuned for players with a few pieces of Raid Finder Siege of Orgrimmar gear, so it shouldn't be too high.

Level Type Spec Slot Name Model Viewer
550FingerFinger Rosewine Loop
550FingerMeleeFinger Painweaver Seal
550FingerSpell SpiritFinger Rune Band of Healing
550FingerPhysical DPSFinger Burning Band
550FingerSpell DPSFinger Band of Desolation
550ClothSpell DPSChest Polychromatic Dreamwrap
550ClothSpell DPSHands Grips of Power
550LeatherChest Nightbrace Chestguard
550LeatherHands Fallbrush Gauntlets
550MailChest Bloodmoon Tunic
550MailHands Trueaim Grips
550PlateChest Plate of Shamanic Fury
550PlateHands Reiver Gauntlets
550Two-handed MaceMeleeTwo Hand Dripping Willow
550One-handed SwordMeleeMain Hand Tharbek's Horrific Posessor
550One-handed SwordPhysical DPSMain Hand Tharbek's Terrible Charge
550DaggerSpell DPSOne Hand Finkle's Shanker

Blasted Lands Quests
The Iron Horde have come through the red Dark Portal and taken over most of the Blasted Lands. Thrall, Khadgar, Vindicator Maraad, and other NPCs have set up small camps near the Dark Portal with a short quest line of standard kill, collect, and interact objectives.

At the end of the quest line, Thrall will assist you in killing the leader of this Iron Horde assault. Turning in the final quest played the incorrect cinematic when we did this preview. You can see the correct cinematic here. Quests were also very slightly tweaked since this preview, but nothing significant was changed.

This quest line rewards the Iron Starlette pet, the The Iron Invasion achievement, and the of the Iron Vanguard title.

New Login Screen
The Warlords of Draenor login screen also comes with Patch 6.0.2! It has been slightly updated since it was initially added in earlier beta.

Updated Character Selection Screens
A few of the races got new character selection screens.

Arena Skirmishes
Players have been asking for skirmishes back for a long time and they finally make their return in Patch 6.0.2!

  • Skirmishes have no visible ratings, unlike regular arenas. There is a hidden rating used for loose matchmaking to keep things a little more balanced.
  • Skirmishes are only offered in 2v2 and 3v3 sizes.
  • You can queue for a skirmish solo or with a group.
  • Skirmishes will reward honor.
  • If you run across someone you enjoyed playing with, you can queue again with them at the end of a match.

UI Improvements
The default UI has received several upgrades:

  • The Dungeon Journal now includes short overviews of the fight for each role, which should help players that don't know the fights.
  • The Key Binding UI has also been improved to a tabbed list rather than a very long list you have to scroll through.
  • You are now able to manage addons in game without having to log out.
  • Bags have several improvements:
    • The default UI now allows you to assign item types to certain bags, search your bags, and auto sort your bags.
    • Junk items in your bags display a gold coin icon when you are at a vendor, letting you know it is safe to vendor them.
    • Items in your bag have a item quality colored border around the icon.
  • The Mount Journal has several improvements:
    • The journal now lists a source and description for mounts.
    • You are now able to set mounts as favorites, putting them at the top of the list.
    • There is a new Summon Random Favorite Mount button, which selects a usable mount at random from your favorites.
    • Mounts that are faction specific now have a different background in the list.
  • The map and quest log have several improvements:
    • The quest log has been integrated into the map.
    • The map now becomes transparent when you are moving.
    • The map is now zoomable and draggable.
    • If you prefer a fullscreen map still, you can make it fullscreen. M will then open the map and L will open the quest log and map combination.
  • You can now scroll through your spellbook with the mouse wheel.
  • Quest objectives, NPCs, your target, and mouseover all can have outlines now. These replace the old sparkles used to show quest objectives.
  • The default action bars can now show cooldown duration in numbers.
  • There is a now screen that gives you a list of a few of the big new things in a patch.
  • The client now tones down or hides some less important spells when things are visually cluttered. This should increase performance in group content and make it easier to see what is going on.
  • Graphics settings can be changed automatically to your presets in raids and battlegrounds.

Orgrimmar Changes
The Kor'kron Guard have been replaced by Troll, Tauren, and Orc guards. The Troll area of the city is now functional again and Xan'tish finally has his snakes back.

Undercity Changes
The Kor'kron are out and the Abominations are back!

Darker Nights
A few areas that were too bright at night now have darker nights, but most areas remain unchanged.

Old World Dungeon Revamps
Patch 6.0.2 brings us updated versions of some lower level dungeons. These include Blackfathom Deeps, Razorfen Downs, and Razorfen Kraul. Tonight we are taking a look at Blackfathom Deeps and Razorfen Downs.

Blackfathom Deeps

Razorfen Kraul

Razorfen Downs

Undelete Character Feature
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
In the upcoming pre-Warlords of Draenor content patch, we’re adding a new feature that allows players to undelete characters. But before you delete that character, there are a few limitations we want you to let you to know about first.

  • Characters under level 10 and Death Knights at level 55 are not eligible to be undeleted.
  • Characters between level 10 and level 29 will no longer recoverable after 90 days.
  • Characters between level 30 and 49 will no longer recoverable after 120 days.
  • All other characters level 50 and above are eligible to be undeleted at any time.
  • Please keep in mind you will only be able to use the undelete option once every 30 days.

Reclaiming Your Name: What About Flugur?
We’ll be holding deleted character names for a limited time, and the original creator can reclaim it for use on a new character during that time. If you create a new character with the same name as one of your deleted characters (let’s say Flugur), the new character must be renamed, transferred, or deleted to complete the restoration of the original Flugur.

Server Responsiveness Improvements
Originally Posted by Celestalon (Blue Tracker)
I don't want to get too deep into the under-the-hood workings of WoW servers, but here's a super short version. Any action that one unit takes on another different unit used to be processed in batches every 400ms. Some very attentive people may have noticed that healing yourself would give you the health instantly (minus client/server latency), whereas healing another unit would incur a delay of between 0ms and 400ms (again, on top of client/server latency). Same with damaging, applying auras, interrupting, knocking back, etc.

That delay can feel bad just due to the somewhat laggy responsiveness feeling, but also because the state of things can change during that time. For example: Holly the Holy Priest is healing Punky the Brewmaster. Punky spikes low, and Holly hits Guardian Spirit in a panic. The server verifies that Holly is able to cast it, and that Punky is alive (great!). The cast goes off, Guardian Spirit goes on cooldown, and a request is placed for the Guardian Spirit aura (that prevents dying) to be placed on Punky. That request will be filled next time the 400ms timer loops, which happens to be 320ms from now. 250ms later, the boss lands another hit on on Punky. Punky dies. Sadface. Another 70ms goes by, and the Guardian Spirit aura request pops up, and goes "Hey guys, I'm here!... Aww... damn, I missed the party. Sadface."

We no longer batch them up like that. We just do it as fast as we can, which usually amounts to between 1ms and 10ms later. It took a considerable amount of work to get it working that way, but we're very pleased with the results so far; the game feels noticeably more responsive.

I can't guarantee that you'll never ever again run into cases where Guardian Spirit went on cooldown and the tank still died... but it'll be literally 40x rarer than before, and the whole game will feel more responsive too.

The old MSAA option is now gone. In its place is FXAA and CMAA options. These offer reduced jaggniess at less of a performance cost than MSAA, but tend to result in somewhat blurrier images. You can find more details in the related tech blog.

Challenge Modes
All of the challenge mode achievements are Legacy and Feat of Strength achievements, with all of the rewards other than the armor sets and teleport spells becoming account wide.

  • Bronze - The Undaunted title is unobtainable and account-wide.
  • Silver - The mounts are unobtainable and account-wide. If you have at least one of the mounts, all four all of the mounts should be unlocked.
    • Modelviewer:
  • Gold - The transmog armor sets and teleport spells are unobtainable and remained character specific. The Gold guild achievement that rewards a pet is unobtainable.

WoWDB Addon Data Collection
Quickly populating the database with 6.0.2 additions is done with the help of many players. The more people that contribute data, the more accurate and quickly we can update the database.

To help out, just click here if you have Curse Client already installed.

When you are playing the addon will gather data and save it. When you are done playing, Curse Client will see the game close and upload the collected data from the addon. You can see the last time data was uploaded by looking in the Plugins tab of the options, as well as making sure the addon is enabled there. Be sure you have Curse Client open before you close WoW so that the data will upload!

The addon now supports Live, Beta, and the PTR, so be sure to add all of your WoW installs to the client.

Updated Addons
Addon authors have been hard at work updating their addons for Patch 6.0.2 and Warlords of Draenor. Now might be a good time to take advantage of the Curse Client to update your addons, and the one click update for Premium users! If you are already using Curse Client, be sure to check this box in the options or click here to help populate WoWDB with data!

by Published on 2014-10-12 09:23 AM

Double Exp and Double Goblin Buffs, Clarsen's Monk Guide, DH BiS Guide

BlizzCon 2014 America Regionals Deck Lists

Skin Spotlight: Master Tyrande, Town Hall: Heroes #34 - The Return of the Alpha

Hazzikostas & Holinka Interview Recap
The interview with ConvertToRaid mostly recapped things that have already been talked about, but the highlights are below:

  • The Blizzcon Live Raid is Method vs Midwinter in Heroic Highmaul.
  • The Simcraft DPS rankings are currently not accurate. (WatcherDev)
  • Warlords boss fights try to integrate the environment more, similar to the Siegecrafter fight in Siege of Orgrimmar.
  • Only the ring legendary is planned right now. Earning legendary items over the course of the expansion is the plan going forward.
  • Later patches may increase the rate at which alts can complete the legendary quest line, as long as one character has already done it.
  • The team is continuing to try and make arenas easier to watch.
  • Updating Moonkin and other shapeshifted player models is still on the list.
  • The Warlords world bosses won't be hard like the early version of Oondasta.

Originally Posted by Watcher
Just chiming in since I know my remark will be controversial. SimCraft itself is a very cool utility, and can definitely be helpful for better understanding and modeling rotations and trying to answer questions about a spec itself, such as "How much of a difference does my 2pc bonus make?" or "What if you tried a different rotation that prioritized X over Y?"

Where it breaks down, is when you try to compare across different classes/specs, which are using different modules. Some are better than others, but they're also making different assumptions along the way. I realize that players really want to understand where their spec falls in the overall rankings, and that in the absence of an up-to-date 6.0 raidbots or equivalent, a visual chart like the SimCraft output looks tremendously appealing. But it really isn't an accurate reflection of the current state of overall spec balance.

And again, this isn't to say that balance is perfect. It isn't. But I'd avoid focusing on these particular numbers.

Accuracy varies a lot from module to module. In general, most of the ones I've looked at are decent about answering questions within a given spec (stat weights, set bonus value, rotation variations, etc., like I said above), which is what the tool was originally (IIRC) designed for. In terms of being an accurate picture of best vs. worst... well... let's take a look at the SimCraft stack rank from a month before 5.4 went live, which I found with some quick Googling: According to that, I guess every warlock should've rerolled before Siege of Orgrimmar, because they were apparently terrible, huh?

Warlords of Draenor - New Character Models
We are finishing up our new character model previews with Gnome, Night Elf, Tauren, Troll, and Draenei. We looked at the other races yesterday. Blood Elves are coming in a future patch.

Gnome Male

Gnome Female
The happy Gnome Female from Blizzcon is gone now.

Night Elf Male

Night Elf Female

Tauren Male

Tauren Female

Troll Male

Troll Female

Draenei Male

Draenei Female

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Mage (Forums / Skills / WoD Talent Calculator)
was giving prismatic crystal a GCD intended?
Yes, and its duration increased to compensate (and then some). (Celestalon)

Monk (Forums / Skills / WoD Talent Calculator)
Are windwalker monks really supposed to have 30+ keybinds in warlords? I just counted the skills and the prunning did nothing to us
They had the lowest number of active buttons in the game. (holinka)

Are the normal 5-mans in the beta supposed to be incredibly difficult to do in heroic raid gear, or is it just me?
Your gear is being scaled to the bare minimum for the zone. Which dungeon(s) did you find to be too challenging? (WatcherDev)

Are the insanely long loot tables for dungeon bosses intended ?
Personal loot in dungeons means every boss needs to have at least something for every spec. (WatcherDev)

Why don't you guys make a PvP talent tree to a whole different one from PvE separated, so they don't interfere for more balance?
We already do so many thing to tune the game separately. A second talent tree sounds like a complexity nightmare. (holinka)

Reputation / Questing
Does WoD have hidden/alternative quests that reveal themselves after having a convo between an npc?
Quests are there to guide you, so we don't generally hide them. WoD has more "discover-able" content than any expac, though. (_DonAdams)

Does WoD give players choices that alter (at least slightly) the story while questing? Makes people pay attention to the story.
The building you choose to construct at your garrison outpost in each zone can lead to different quests in some cases. (_DonAdams)

Do WoD have optional (or interactions) that are morally driven rather than reward driven? (Saving a person in a fire for nothing)
We tend to create interactions that have a mechanical purpose (objective credit, buff) or add flavor. (_DonAdams)
If you save a person from a fire, we feel like we should reward you for that, in addition to you feeling morally good about it. (_DonAdams)

Is there any open-world non-raid reason to group in WoD? Do you think there should be? Is that supported gameplay?
We have some group quests while leveling up, and several of the max-level outdoor areas are group content. (WatcherDev)

In Diablo 2 there are random shrines that spawn to add flavor to the gameplay. I always wondered why WoW doesn't have this...
Timeless Isle had these! (Muffinus)
Will we see any random shrines like these in Warlords?
There are tons of useful buff items scattered around Draenor/endgame POIs, not shrines this round, different/new stuff (Muffinus)

Is the barn supposed to make cooking obsolete or is this an oversight? Garrisons shouldn't be more important than the characters.
Your shipments are limited, and not everyone will have the barn, how many feasts does your raid need? (Muffinus)

Any chance we can Have prisoners of enemy factions in our garrison? i'd love to have gnome slaves and goblin overseers please
This was going to be a feature of the barracks jail at one point, maybe we'll revisit it in the future with some fun questgivers (Muffinus)

some of us would rather have a "collect them all" than "research which follower comes from where in advance"
You can see them in your follower list (uncollected followers show up as grey but searchable), but yes that is a concern. (Muffinus)

What if we want to collect those other followers though!
Considering ways to allow you to gain them in the future. (Muffinus)

Hazzikostas & Holinka Live Sunday, 10/12
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
This Sunday, October 12 at 9:00 a.m. PDT, lead game designer Ion Hazzikostas and senior game designer Brian Holinka will be joining the Convert to Raid show panel live to discuss all things Warlords of Draenor. You can tune in via Convert to Raid's website or on GamebreakerTV's Twitch channel. My colleagues and I will be hanging out in Twitch chat during the show to mingle with you all too.

We'd love to have you tune in!

After live airing, rebroadcasts of the show will be available in MP3 and VOD formats at
by Published on 2014-10-11 11:23 AM

Edriel's End-Game Suggestions, Saturday's Technical Issues

BlizzCon Americas Regional Finalists & Videos

Heroes Alpha Patch 32455 - Promotional Items, Anub'arak & Azmodan, New Mounts, New Skins, Hero Changes

Warlords of Draenor - New Character Models
With Patch 6.0.2 and new character models only days away it is time to take a look at the new character models that go live with the patch. We are starting with Human, Dwarf, Orc, and Undead.

Human Male

Human Female

Dwarf Male

Dwarf Female

Orc Male

Orc Female

Undead Male

Undead Female

CASC Conversion in 6.0.2
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
As previously announced, the Warlords of Draenor 6.0.2 pre-patch marks our transition to the new “Content Addressable Storage Container” (CASC) file format system. This transition is an automatic process that will occur through the desktop app as it installs Patch 6.0.2. While it shouldn’t require any action on your part, we have a few notes on the process that can help ensure a smooth install.

  • By default your desktop app is set to download future patch data automatically. If you’ve turned yours off we recommend re-enabling it to download the 6.0.2 patch data. It’s a pretty big patch, and starting now will save you precious Iron Horde-killing time on Tuesday. Your background download settings are configurable per-game, and you can also adjust things like download speed, among other settings.

  • There will be one small final patch on 6.0.2 release-day that will include the last few files to install the patch. Right now we’re expecting it to be around 100MB.

  • If you’re one to leave your computer on and desktop app running, on the morning of the patch release the install and conversion to CASC will happen automatically.

  • Hard drive fragmentation can slow down just about anything you do on your computer, but especially when a program needs to move around large data files, like this patch and conversion process will need to. If you haven’t defragged your hard drive in a while, we recommend looking into it as a possible install-time saving preparation step. Note that defrags aren't typically necessary or recommended if using an SSD.

  • If you’re coming back to the game and looking to reinstall from scratch, be aware that all game discs out in the world are printed using the old MPQ file format. That means that if you attempt to install from those discs after 6.0.2, the desktop app will instead install by downloading the game. That’s of course not necessarily a bad thing, especially because downloading can actually sometimes be faster than a disc install. Discs being printed for Warlords of Draenor, and for future “Battle Chests”, will be printed in the CASC format and they’ll be able to be used to install from as before.

  • If you encounter any problems with the install or conversion please visit our Technical Support forum. For additional troubleshooting instructions or to speak with Blizzard support please use the Support site.

While we've tried to ensure as speedy a conversion as possible by using most of your existing game data, this is a complex process, and depending on your hardware, hard drive fragmentation and free space, among other factors, this still may take a bit of time to complete. We hope some of these hints help cut that down even further.

Apparently it's not removing the old files, so you're going to use more space.
Not entirely accurate. As the conversion processes each MPQ, it deletes it. At the end of the conversion you should be at or around the same folder size if you've already downloaded all of the 6.0.2 data to this point, and should only need around 4GB free for the conversion itself.

Something people have noted in testing though is a lack of "garbage collection", which would cleanup redundant files after new versions are installed. This is an issue mainly in a beta environment as constant (sometimes daily) updates are released and redundant data builds up very quickly, but it isn't something that will immediately result in a larger install upon release of 6.0.2. Implementing garbage collection is something our engineers are working toward.

Blue Posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Level 90 UBRS
There will be an item level restriction to queue for the limited time level 90 UBRS dungeon, but we're still evaluating exactly what we want that number to be. Note that the dungeon is tuned for players with at least a few pieces of Siege of Orgrimmar LFR gear. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Patch 6.0.2 Changes
All game-wide systems and content changes being introduced with Warlords are implemented with 6.0.2. That's all class changes, new character models, any end-of-seasons for PvP or Challenge Modes or Brawler's Guild, item squish, the new Premade Groups finder, any tuning or balancing, and pretty much every change that affects the game in a holistic way, all happen next Tuesday. So yeah, it's kiiiiiind of a big deal.

Oh also there's the pre-expansion event that happens too, so there's also some new content between now and the actual expansion launch.

What isn't available in 6.0.2, and requires Warlords of Draenor, is walking through the portal and experiencing the actual content of the expansion. Garrisons, dungeons, raids, quests, mounts, etc. etc. (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Hunter (Forums / Skills / WoD Talent Calculator)
No hyperbole, just want to know why its excusable to be low on numbers as a pure dps class. MM is our only dps-strong option.
On what fight? (Celestalon)
On any. Patchwerk specific, it seriously feels like BM/Survival underperforms. Vague but AoE as survival is also not there.
We virtually never make Patchwerk fights; that would be an extremely niche case in practice. Not a fair comparison. (Celestalon)

Monk (Forums / Skills / WoD Talent Calculator)
Which abilities do you define as 'Barrier' and 'Block' for monks?
Block would be like Stagger and Purifying Brew (%-based). Barrier would be like Guard and Expel Harm (AP-based). (Celestalon)

Shaman (Forums / Skills / WoD Talent Calculator)
EQ buffed (through ECL Perk)? Thought we were going to put more dmg into CL and less into EQ per your post forever ago.
Ele AoE DPS w/o EQ is average. With EQ is amazing. The change is to make sure it's amazing. (Celestalon)

Are we going to be seeing skirmishes in the pre-patch? If so, can we play them in-between seasons?
yes and yes (holinka)

Any news on whether xp-on and off brackets will be merged come WoD?
they will not for the same reasons they have never been merged (holinka)

Make PvPers have their rating achieves reset but keep titles. So there is something to look forward to in WoD, I want to again
understand the desire here. We could definitely provide something cool seasonly here. (holinka)

In large scale PvP like Ashran or even AV, ranged seem much better than melee in crossfire scenarios, thoughts/opinons?
Different classes/specs have strengths/weaknesses in different scenarios. We're ok with this. (holinka)

Tank specs used to work well in PvP without being OP, in wrath for example they were perfectly viable.
For every person that says "X was perfectly viable/balanced in expansion Y" there's a person that disagrees (holinka)
Balance is certainly subjective and usually a matter of perspective. (holinka)

Reputation / Questing
Telaar post-Warsong quests should be phased to remove the orcs, no? we beat them out of the town
Phasing divides players and prevents you from helping a friend through content you've already completed. We use it sparingly. (_DonAdams)
There are TONS of places where one could argue for a "problem solved" phase, but we generally don't do them. (_DonAdams)

Could you confirm me that one can only have 1 of Shado pan's daily hubs active in the quest log at a given time?
Yes, only one area is available per day for the Shado Pan dailies. If you have old dailies, try abandoning them. (_DonAdams)

New World of Warcraft Comic: Blackhand
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
A master tactician, Blackhand has never been one to shy away from battle. No matter what enemies the Blackrock orcs face, he has always identified a weakness to take advantage of, and used it to lead his clan to victory. His strength, tenacity, and cunning are legendary among Draenor’s orc warlords.

But even the best strategists can only do so much when outnumbered and overwhelmed. When ogres attack the Blackrock clan's domain, Blackhand exploits every advantage he can think of and finds he’s still unable to turn the tide of battle. With his warriors pitted against impossible odds, Blackhand has to look for aid in truly unexpected places. Will the price of the Blackrock clan’s survival end up being too high?

We invite you to read and download the free comic, “Blackhand,” written by Robert Brooks and illustrated by Alex Horley.

Learn more about Blackhand’s past and future at Characters of Warcraft: Blackhand.
by Published on 2014-10-09 07:16 PM

Patch 6.0.2: The Iron Tide Crashes into Azeroth October 14
Less than a week remains to finish everything that is changing in Patch 6.0.2!
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Patch 6.0.2: The Iron Tide is scheduled to crash into Azeroth on Tuesday, October 14. Featuring new content heralding the Iron Horde incursion, updates to the skills and abilities for every class, and a host of gameplay adjustments, this overture to Warlords of Draenor is coming at you armed to the teeth.

Treacherous Developments
The Dark Portal in the Blasted Lands has turned blood red. Hundreds of strange-looking orcs are violently pouring into Azeroth, killing everything that stands in their path. Nethergarde and Okril’lon have already fallen, and while the Horde and the Alliance moved as quickly as they could to get reinforcements to their people, they are too late. The Iron Horde invasion has begun.

In this desperate hour, King Wrynn and Warchief Vol’jin have called upon their greatest champions to join the front lines in the Blasted Lands and do whatever they can to stop the Iron Horde . . . before the rest of Azeroth falls before them.

Word of this surprise attack sends players rushing to the Blasted Lands to reckon with the barbarous infiltration. After the fall of a high ranking Iron Horde general named Gar’mak Bladetwist, you’ll report what you’ve witnessed in the Blasted Lands to King Wrynn or Warchief Vol’jin. It’s apparent to both the Horde and the Alliance that this is only the first salvo in a much larger conflict, and the only way to win is to take the fight directly to the Iron Horde . . . by journeying through the Dark Portal into Draenor.

The Infiltration of Blackrock Spire
An advance party of Iron Horde forces has barged right out of the Blasted Lands and pushed all the way to Blackrock Mountain, where they found refuge and supplies in Upper Blackrock Spire. There can be only one response: the Alliance and the Horde of Azeroth must face this iron incursion head on.

Available to level-90 characters for a limited time, this specially revamped five-player version of Upper Blackrock Spire sets the stage for the coming counterstrike against the Iron Horde. Here, you will face Orebender Gor'ashan, Kyrak, and Commander Tharbek as you begin to take the fight to the enemy and sharpen the skills—and swords—you’ll need to succeed on an unwelcoming alien world.

Prepare yourself. Draenor is waiting.

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