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Toy Box and UI Changes
Zones, Quests, and Exploration
Concerned the new Piccolo is going to be another annoying item that interrupts eating/drinking, confirm it won't?
9 hr 59 min ago
We've changed the way the item works specifically to avoid that. It will not interrupt eating or drinking.
9 hr 51 min ago
Have y’all made any official announcement about raid finder testing this weekend? Specifically timeframe/available encounters
10 hr 27 min ago
"...we will open up the Slagworks wing in Raid Finder over the weekend."
10 hr 7 min ago
, Lead Game Designer
I'm a raid leader, and I built a Mage Tower to help my raid team get to raid. Did I just waste my gold? They can't use it?
10 hr 35 min ago
Your friends will be able to use your Mage Tower / Spirit Lodge portals in patch 6.1!
10 hr 32 min ago
Coming in Patch 6.1: Elemental Runes collected for the 'Might of the Elemental Lords' quest will stack to 999.
1 day ago
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New Site Feature: Garrison Follower Tracking and Mission Recommendations
6.1 PTR: Build 19551 - Spell Changes, Twitter Integration Live, New Toys
6.1 PTR Patch Notes: Updated January 29th
Shapeshifting Improvements for Cosmetic Effects Coming in 6.1, BRF and Mythic Highmaul Guides
Method's Mythic Butcher Guide: Video and Written Strategy
Warlords of Draenor Follower Guide
Warlords of Draenor Legendary Ring Guide
Comprehensive Ashran Guide
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News by Tags
6.1 PTR: Build 19551
6.1 PTR Patch Notes
6.1 PTR: Build 19533
Blackrock Foundry Loot Preview
Method's Guide to Mythic Tectus
Patch 6.0 Blizzard Tweets on Datamined Class Changes
2014/05/22 at 11:46 AM
Blue Tweets on Datamined Class Changes
We know it's hard to keep up with tweet traffic, especially at busy times like this, so we've put together a post sorting all the tweets about the patch 6.0 Datamining into class and spell conversations. We'll keep adding to this as the day progresses, so do check back if you need an update, and of course there's the
Wowhead Blue Tweet Tracker
Don't forget we've also got posts on
Item Highlights, Garrisons, Icons and more
, and all the
from the most recent build!
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>PSA: We're currently in the middle of implementing many changes. Damage values that you see in data mining are not nerfs.</p>— Celestalon (@Celestalon) <a href="
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News Roundup: Patch 5.4.7 Hotfixes, Blizzard Interviews, Significant Tweets
2014/04/07 at 7:59 PM
Patch 5.4.7 Hotfixes
Resolved an issue where the visual effect for Healing Rain was able to persist indefinately.
Guerrillas in our Midst: Resolved an issue where General Nazgrim can lose his quest giver status, preventing players from being able to complete the quest.
The Lesson of the Burning Scroll: Players now receive the Master's Flame automatically upon accepting the quest.
All world bosses in Mists of Pandaria are no longer tap-to-faction. Players from both factions that engage the world boss at the same time are now eligible for loot.
Raids, Dungeons, and Scenarios
Each World of Warcraft account can now create a maximum of 10 instances per hour (up from 5).
Siege of Orgrimmar
Amalgam of Corruption's Unleashed Anger can now reach players that are greater than 10 yards away.
Siege of Niuzao Temple: A Challenge Gong has been added, allowing players the option to trigger waves of attackers more quickly during the Commander Vo'jak encounter.
Technical Game Designer Chadd "Celestalon" Nervig has been very busy over the weekend, sitting down with us on Friday afternoon to talk about Warlords of Draenor, then attended both Convert To Raid and Final Boss on Sunday! You can read our
head over to WoW Insider for the full transcript
Convert to Raid Interview
Pat Krane, Koltrane and Dairies were joined by Celestalon and Zarhym for an interview on everything Warlords! You can
listen to the audio
video is available on YouTube
, but for now it's summarized below - hit the toggle to read it in full!
Click to read the Convert To Raid Interview Summary
Timeline, Alpha and Delays
The information has been around for a while, ready to release, but they didn't want to step on other franchises
There have been some minor delays with technical hitches in the alpha builds
The game has been in Alpha for quite a while prior to this, and is just now going into take-home Alpha
The new CASC file system needed to be ready
There are a lot more blogs coming!
BlizzCon 2014 is something they would love to do, more information will be coming at some point
CASC File System and Other Technology
Makes it a lot better than MoPaQ as the data is organized in a much better way
It's much faster for the game to read, load and hotfix
More can be hotfixed, fewer client side patches will be required, so less downtime
Players should hopefully see loading speed and patching speed increased
Garrisons require a lot of new technology -- a series of blogs will be coming soon on these, hopefully withing the next 2-3 weeks
Garrison NPCs use new AI technology to make them seem more alive and respond to you
They have found a way to potentially make the game more responsive in play
Garrisons will play a big natural role in the leveling experience
There will be quest lines and "Choose Your Own Adventure" style chains that add to your Garrison
Your Garrison choices will alter your quest flow for different zones as you level
It'll be a natural part of the questing, not a grind like the 5.0 dailies
You'll get your garrison as soon as you land on Draenor
Datamined Content - Maps, Encounters, Models
The devs are pretty happy with Challenge Modes and Scenarios, there are no huge changes coming
A total of 17 encounters will launch
It's a split tier, so there's different ilvls within the tier
The Velen model is not the male draenei model
Partly to address the downside of leveling up not feeling quite so rewarding
Mixture of throughput buffs and rotation changes, allow players to ease into their changes
They are not removed at max level
They are not something to plan around, they should not be seen as character customization
Class Change Philosophy
Vengeance was great defensively, but not great offensively. It made tank damage very variable.
Resolve will be Vengeance but only for self-healing or self-absorption
Tanks will gain 1% increased attack power per mastery - mastery has offensive value
Offensive value will also be added to bonus armor
Tank DPS will also come from stats like Crit giving Parry
Tank damage needs to be increased dramatically to bring them in line with somewhere-below-DPS as they lost Vengeance
The "Swap at 3 Stacks" tanking model is being removed as much as possible
"Saber lash" style mechanics can ensure both tanks are engaged in the fight
Mana Cooldowns were largely button bloat as they were usually used in the same places, and then on cooldown
Baseline mana regen is massively increased
The idea of active mana regen is being considered
Thok and Durumu fights won't exist - heavy damage is not good
Damage will be far less spiky
DPS should be focused on DPS - the lines got very blurred between roles in Mists
Cooldowns are being redistributed over spec and class
The raid shouldn't feel like they need to bring a warlock
Specific Class Changes
Hunters were too similar across specs so they are trying to create more diversity
The rotations are being changed across spec to make them more different
Army of the Dead is something the devs are looking at bringing back
Army of the Dead could be made instant instead of a channel
Blood DKs will be getting more interesting active mitigation, with things like Rune Tap being an absorb, and Rune Strikes will offer small shields
Dual Wield will remain limited to Frost
Runeforges will be made more variable
Symbiosis created so much button bloat and was overcomplicated, hence its removal
Hybrid Talents mean that there is more healing throughput for all specs from L90 talents
More specialization is being added so each spec has one key skill
Marksmanship will feel like they are lining up focus cast time big nuke spells
Survival will be more about DoTs and multidotting and traps
Beast Mastery will continue to be about pets
Prismatic Crystal will be auto-targeted when it's summoned. All damage dealt to it is replicated to nearby enemies but stronger, but the devs recognize useability problems
The new Brain Freeze effect makes it do more damage - Frost needed more cast times.
Fire has scaling issues. Inferno Blast helped, but they are also going to bring up the base crit at lower levels of gear. Basically bad luck prevention on crit - the less you crit the more crit chance you get
New Mistweaver Stance, to allow fistweaving to be a middle ground between DPS and healing. It's not like Atonement, it's not a way to do max healing.
Offers some healing and high DPS for a healer
Renewing Mist and Expel Harm will generate significant baseline chi. As you get more Spirit, Surging Mist and Spinning Crane Kick will get you more chi.
Surging Mist will be improved
Rushing Jade Wind will not work with the Empowered Spinning Crane Kick perk
Touch of Death is more like an execute now, it hits really hard but with a 1.5 minute cooldown and you'll have more opportunity to use it.
Mistweavers are getting some significant changes in Warlords in their stat values. Mistweavers value DPS stats too much
Mistweavers will need to value Spirit far more, fewer of their spells generate chi
Paladins are fine mechanically, but weak on numbers
Execution Sentence is being reworked for healing, so you get a burst of healing at the start
Protection is having defensive value added to multistrike in the form of Shining Protector, which heals you for +30% on incoming heals
Shadow Priests shouldn't need gear which is different stat-wise for different fights.
Shadow will have the option to gear towards more single target damage or not. It should mean a couple of pieces of gear, not a full set
Rogues aren't as indistinct as hunters, so less is being done. For example Rupture is removed from combat.
The positional requirements are simply to mitigate always having to be behind the boss. You can still be parried from the front (3% chance) so being behind is still beneficial
Leeching poison is not planned as a lethal poison, but they are working on poisons
Mana regen is being drastically increased to account for Healing Wave's removal
AoE for Enhance should have ramp-up, but be very strong when you achieve that
T16 4-piece worked very well
Previously tuning hasn't been right but the devs will fix it. Enhancement AoE should be really strong
Removing the cast-while-moving element of Lightning Bolt is a huge change. The devs are watching it, and think it will force Elemental to do more with their other cast while moving spells. They won't be turrets.
Gateway effective range and how often they can be used is being decreased - anyone can only use it every 90 seconds
They are considering changing the enrage removal on Berserker Rage, and re-examining Berserker Stance
They tried cutting Overpower from Arms, but didn't like it. Arms' rotation is still open to alteration but there was a sentence left in the notes by accident!
Guild levels and rewards
There are no plans to add guild levels or rewards
There are no specific plans to add banners
Zarhym and Celestalon both have characters in Convert to Raid's guilds!
Final Boss Interview
Celestalon and Zarhym also joined Final Boss for an interview! Megan "Poneria" O'Neill has already written
a fantastic summary
, which you can see on
On Class Quests:
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p><a href="
Ah, this was a question that we had hoped to get to, but didn't have time for in either interview... Class questlines are...</p>— Celestalon (@Celestalon) <a href="
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Technical Game Designer Chadd "Celestalon" Nervig Talks Warlords of Draenor
2014/04/05 at 1:10 PM
Update! 3:30 EST, the
Warlords of Draenor talent calculator
is now updated with datamined talent changes.
I was fortunate enough to be invited to Blizzard Campus to interview Technical Game Designer Chadd "Celestalon" Nervig on Warlords of Draenor. You can
read the full interview over at WoW Insider
, but I've created a summary for Wowhead which you can read below. Please note that while the WoW Insider transcript is just that, I have used my own phrasing here.
Timeline and the "Alpha" term
Celestalon wanted to be very clear that this was not the final set of patch notes. There's already another 5,000+ word set being created by Rygarius, as well as blogs. It's definitely not the case that these are set in stone.
Players shouldn't take the "Alpha" as meaning that Blizzard is not that far along in content, and not assume that there's a certain time period of Beta to follow.
"Alpha" more relates to how many people are being invited. Mists had a lot of people, thanks to the Annual Pass, and it wasn't necessarily the best for testing. In this Alpha, invitations are going to go a little more slowly, and ramp up steadily.
It also has to do with the new CASC file system and wanting to test certain aspects of that.
As we suspected,
will be learned randomly between 91 and 100. The reason for their randomness is to provide variety, and also to remove the problem of choice, and the pressure of making the wrong choice.
Draenor Perks also serve as a way for players to adapt to their new rotation in Warlords in manageable steps rather than trying to completely re-learn their class at level 100. These small changes alter the rotation as they come in, meaning players can learn as they level.
They should be considered a fun perk rather than a complete reworking of an ability, it's fun to see your character grow stronger with every level.
Battleground Balance and Ability Pruning
There is a single Battleground bracket from 90-99 and a new one starts at 100, so there shouldn't be any issues with balance from the perks.
It's not detailed in the patch notes at this point, but thanks to the ability pruning they're going to re-examine when specs get abilities and look to balance at the same time.
It will result in a much better experience, especially at low levels.
They're also adjusting the damage and healing of certain abilities, removing base damage and healing, which will massively improve scaling at low levels.
Raid Cooldown Removal from Tanks and DPS
Several of the raid cooldowns being removed from tanks are also being removed from DPS - such as Devotion Aura
The next version of the patch notes will include a section on "Stackable Raid Utility". It covers survival cooldowns for the raid.
The general philosophy is that the healers signed up for keeping the raid alive so should do most of that.
It's good for other specs to contribute to it, but some were doing too much and infringing on healers' jobs
They're lowering these raid-wide defensive cooldowns for all tanks, as it's not going to lose them their spot, but they have to be more careful for DPS
They want to balance stackable raid utility at a lower level than it is now, so everyone brings a little
Windwalkers' Stance of the Fierce Tiger's 10% movement increase will become a 10-yard radius aura for all melee to move faster
Mages will bring Amplify Magic as a raid cooldown, which increases all healing received by the raid by 20% for a short duration
Ret Paladins lose Devotion Aura, but keep all their hands apart from Salvation
Smoke Bomb's damage mitigation is reduced
Gateway is being nerfed, and Healthstones are basically just replacement health potions
Potions and Pre-Potting
Health Potions and Healthstones now heal for the same amount and share a cooldown
Health Potions and Healthstones do not put mana potions, nor agility potions, crit potions, any other potions on cooldown
Blizzard was considering removing pre-potting, but decided that players would all just use potions at the start of a fight unless there were very specific mechanics that demanded them later, so pre-potting will remain as it adds gameplay
Tanking, Vengeance and Resolve
There were various issues with Vengeance and how it altered tank behavior and damage. Tank damage varied wildly depending on the fight, with tanks either doing a lot or very little. Tanks would do counter-intuitive things like take a lot of damage to get more Vengeance.
The defensive aspect of Vengeance worked well, though, so that has been renamed Resolve and will affect only active mitigation
Tank damage is being increased, so tanks will do good damage regardless of whether they're being hit. They can expect to be a little behind a similarly skilled DPS
Different tanks will rank higher on healing meters depending on whether their active mitigation counts as healing. DKs will rank very high, Warriors won't appear, just thanks to their different ways to prevent damage. This isn't something Blizzard is concerned about.
Profession Changes in Raiding
Profession bonuses that provide a direct combat benefit are largely removed, so Blacksmithing's extra sockets, Enchanting's extra enchants and so on.
For items such as Engineering's Rocket Boots, where they provide a considerable benefit despite not being a direct throughput buff, the current plan is to let Rocket Boots and other things like Invisibility belts be something engineers can make and sell so everyone can have them.
Things like Life Spirits and Water Spirits are currently staying in, but they are something the devs are monitoring
There is a blog coming up on how professions are being made appealing following the removal of combat bonuses
Combo Points, poisons and Agility versus other stats
The change is coming thanks to the big rework
The devs are looking to create a more dynamic gameplay experience with fewer inherent downsides to target swapping
Rogues and Ferals shouldn't expect a complete rework with this change, but it is something that requires a lot of tweaking
The impact is likely to be on their target-swapping and ramp-up, so the devs are watching this closely
Agility classes are getting a crit bonus over other classes like Strength ones because of thematic reasons, and also because that's how it always was
There is no longer an increase in crit from agility itself, just the flat 10% bonus to crit
Blizzard wanted to bring the preference for primary and secondary stats to a more level standing -- Agility always loved agility, Strength always loved secondary stats, Intellect was somewhere in between. They are looking to balance that.
More poisons are coming for rogues!
The low throughput low cost heals were removed as, in most cases, they're something you want to gear out of ever using
The devs do recognize that this has lowered certain healers' toolbox and are monitoring it
They want mana to matter, but they don't want that to mean you're OOM all the tome.
The equivalent of Greater Heal or Greater Healing Wave will be castable at very low mana levels as your mana regen will be far higher
Base mana regen will be like starting Mists in Throne of Thunder gear. There will be less spirit on gear, so the change from the start to the end of the expansion will be less
It will become worth the mana to cast a multi-target heal when around 2.5 players are injured, as a general rule
They want to get back to overhealing being something that players care about
Melee vs. Ranged, Casting While Moving
Melee vs. Ranged balance is an ongoing task. While it wasn't perfect, if you ignore some outliers melee vs ranged balance was pretty good in Siege of Orgrimmar.
They recognize the need to tune both encounters and classes to ensure that you need to do less DPS while moving, and also do less DPS while moving!
when you're casting-while-moving less, you care about movement more and it becomes a gameplay element you want to consider, and it also means different spells become more valuable.
Elemental Shaman were the hardest hit and are being closely monitored
If someone has an ability that obsoletes the need to worry about something they stop remembering their other abilities that they have to deal with that thing. That's the case with casting while moving for a lot of characters.
More spell- and class-specific details are available in the
WoW Insider transcript
Crowd Control and CC breaks
It's OK if some classes have more CC than others. They just want to reduce the difference between the classes with the most and the classes with the least.
They want to have less CC, so if they remove too many CC breaks they'll end up where we were, so they still need most of those CC breaks. A couple will go but the majority will stay.
Ability Removal and the Problem of Iconic Abilties
There will not likely be many more abilties removed, but some may be swapped.
They're currently discussing Army of the Dead, as it's something DKs feel is iconic
Abilties which have been in the game longer or have more "Affordance" - visual impact - are less likely to be cut
A good example is the merge of Skull Banner into Recklessness as opposed to the reverse - more information over at
Paladin wings are another great example of an iconic visual that the devs see the merit of and are working to retain
If people have feedback on how they love this ability and it felt awesome, that is very valuable feedback to the devs, let them know. There is still flexibility in what they're pruning and they might change it.
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