January 22, 2010

WoW PvP Resilience Changes

It was announced today that there will be a major change to resilience, which is being hotfixed into the game as we approach the new arena season. The change is expected to be in place for the duration of the Wrath of the Lich King expansion; which we take to mean it will not carry over into Cataclysm.

This change will "double the value of resilience in reducing damage done by players," according to Bornakk. Players will see a 10% to 20% reduction in damage taken. However, this change will not affect critical strike chances or critical strike damage. If healing becomes too over powered with this change, Blizzard has a "PvP only solution" ready to go, however they're not rolling out that part of the changes just yet.

The full details after the break.
From Bornakk:
We are currently in the process of applying a hotfix to buff resilience. While some modifications may be made, we intend to have this buff in effect for the remainder of the Wrath of the Lich King expansion.The change will double the value of resilience in reducing damage done by players. So depending on their current amount of resilience, characters might experience a 10 to 20% decrease in damage taken from other players. The critical strike chance and critical strike damage reduction components of resilience will remain unaffected by this change.We are also aware of the possibility that this change will make healing in PvP too difficult to counter. While we are not making any immediate changes to address this issue, we have prepared some further changes that will allow us to quickly deploy a PvP-only healing adjustment if we feel it is warranted.We will be applying this change very soon while we are between Arena seasons so we can evaluate how it works in multiple PvP scenarios for the upcoming Arena season, and as we continue to prepare for Cataclysm. As we have mentioned previously, one of the goals for Cataclysm is to have a PvP environment where it is harder to regularly achieve so much damage and healing in relatively few global cooldowns compared to what we currently have in the game.

Russian commercial rips off Lich King trailer

As if it weren't enough that we have to tolerate protection warrior dominance in PvP as the first sign of the impending apocalypse, we started getting tips about a somewhat...odd-looking Russian commercial two days ago featuring Evgeni Plushenko, an Olympic gold medalist and three-time World Champion. By now, YouTube's gotten in on the joke with the Related Videos sidebar as well.

Finished watching it? Yep -- what you're seeing above is a riff on Blizzard's Wrath of the Lich King trailer as envisioned by Oriflame, a cosmetics company advertising their Glacier Ice cologne. If they're not actually riffing on the trailer, then apparently their marketing department shares a hive mind with Blizzard's cinematics team, which may become troublesome around the time the latter starts storyboarding the Cataclysm trailer.

I am stricken by a sudden vision of Burma-Shave advertisements in Gilneas: This cooling shave / Will never fail / To stamp its user / Alpha male / Burma-Shave.


January 17, 2010

Warlocks to get a new pet in Cataclysm?

Coming out of the Twitter developer chat tonight was this question and following answer, given by Ghostcrawler and J. Allen Brack:

Q. With the new skins for druid forms, what is the chance that warlocks might see race/faction specific demon skins or maybe a new one?

A. When you look around, there are a lot of say imp or voidwalkers we could use. It's something we talk about quite a bit. As for new demons, I hear warlocks are going to be getting some new spells for the next expansion...

While it's not a direct confirmation that warlocks will be getting a new pet in Cataclysm, I think it's safe to read into this and maybe get a bit excited about this one. I doubt they'd mention warlocks getting "new spells" in relation to getting a new demon if such an addition to the warlock class wasn't planned.So, new demons for warlocks? Probably. My guess is that it'll be a pet lava monster or something related to the elemental plane. Just the perfect kind of thing to pop up into the evil hands of warlocks from the sundered land in Cataclysm.

Reminder: Battleground Bonanza II today

Reminder: Battleground Bonanza II today

When: Saturday, January 16th, 4:30pm EST (1:30pm PST, 2:30pm Server time)
Where: The Hall of the Brave (where the Battlemasters are), Orgrimmar, Zangarmarsh U.S.
Who: Any level 10 or above Horde character.
How: Ask any It came from the Blog Lurker or Robinator for a guild invite.
What: Battleground premades

We will be forming groups and hitting as many level/group-size appropriate BGs as we can for an hour or so. If you can't make it to the Hall of the Brave in time for the event, you will miss out on the first screenshot, but will still be able to participate. We will also be doing some BG related quests, so there will be some traveling for certain level ranges.

If you are unfamiliar with Battleground play, please do some homework so that it will be more fun for both you and your teammates. Also, if you have any questions about the WoW.com guild, please read our FAQ.Come join the fun!

Possible changes to tabards, backpacks, and banks

In the recent Blizzard developer chat there were several questions pertaining to player storage. They spoke about the issue with storing tabards from all of your various factions, the default backpack falling behind other bags, and being able to access the bank slots of your alts without the need to use the mail.

All three of these are long standing issues that have usually been avoided when direct questions came up, usually invoking the safe and often used "we'll see" remark. I would love to be able to replace my backpack with a Glacial Bag and gain six storage slots or clear out the bank space I'm using to store specialty tabards. Let's take a look at their responses after the break.

Tabard Storage

Q. For those of us who collect tabards and armor sets, do you see a way for us to store and not use our very limited inventory?
A. Yes. We'd like to store them the same way you do titles. In general, we don't want to punish the pack-rats out there who just like to collect stuff. We will have to wait and see what we can do about it though.

This would probably be the best way to address this. The problem you run into is do you end up having a tab on your character sheet similar to the mount and pet tabs where you can see and select your various mounts or do you just have the drop-down like the titles. Being as some tabards have special abilities, the former solution would probably be the best. This would give you a way to swap them in and out easily as well as possibly a way to activate these special properties.

Shirts also fall into this same issue. While most shirts are just for looks, there are some that do technically give buffs and there is even a specific one that you have to wear while doing part of the gunship battle portion of Icecrown Citadel. If tabards are reworked to require less storage, we'll have to see if shirts get the same treatment.

Personal banks act like guild banks across alts...

Q. Would you be willing to make personal bank storage look more like guild storage and available to all characters on a realm?
A. This is something we discuss a lot. It actually helps with keeping mail volume down as well as a player convenience.

OMG, YES PLZ!... err... That would be nice as well. For those of us with a server full of alts (most of which leveled up to their mid-60s or higher just for professions) this would be an awesome change. I've got an alchemist, scribe, leatherworker, engineer, and enchanter who are constantly sending mails back and forth. It would be a lot easier to just toss the raw materials in the bank, hop on the alt, get them out of that character's bank tab and then make whatever it is I wanted to make. No more mail lag or alt hopping to grab the needed items from each and every character. For those of you with personal guild banks already, I'm sure you can see further ways to expand on this.

Increased backpack size...
Q. Any plans to increase the size of the backpack?
A. Yeah, it's something we discuss a lot. On the other hand, the madness has to end somewhere. I'm not sure I want a 100 slot bag with that much stuff to manage. We'd need to make sure you could easily upgrade the existing backpack; we wouldn't want anyone to manage to just be without any bags.

I imagine this will be done similar to the riding system or any of the other things that require money and a certain level to obtain. You'd likely have an NPC in each of the major city banks offering the option to upgrade your backpack or offering a quest to do so. This would keep the upgrade process gated and allow for players to only get larger backpacks at points the developers believe players will need them. It's a sad day when what started out as your 'big' backpack is now your 'I really wish I could replace this' backpack.

We still have no idea if we'll see these changes in Cataclysm or even the expansion after it. However, storage is a concern to us pack-rats out there and being able to manage it a little easier is always appreciated.