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Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Patch 4.3 World Map and Minimap Improvements

The world map and mini-map got a couple of upgrades on test realms and they should be slightly more useful after the patch, hopefully we will see it on live servers soon.

  • The minimap has an improved menu and will let you track a couple more things, including archaeology and questing areas.
  • You can now track areas on your minimap, archaeology sites and quest objectives areas will now be displayed directly on the minimap!
  • The world map now (finally) shows the level of regions on mouseover.

Friday, October 28, 2011

[WoW Parody] H.O.Y.T, CryKoda, PvPSiennah & EmberIsolte - Morning After Hallow's End

Patch 4.3 - PTR Build 14899

A minor build is being deployed on test realms, the main change is the addition of the Tyrael's Charger from the WoW annual pass.

Tyrael's Charger
The model of the Tyrael's Charger from the World of Warcraft 1 Year Annual Pass/Free Diablo Offer is now in the game files.

This is a PTR model and it might be updated/changed in the future. A video will be up within the hour

Spell Changes
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
Legendary Daggers Bonus Wording Clarified
  • Item - Dragon Soul Legendary Daggers Your melee attacks have a chance to grant Shadows of the Destroyer, increasing your Agility by 17, stacking up to 50 times. Each application past 30 grants an increasing chance to trigger Fury of the Destroyer. When triggered, this consumes all applications of Shadows of the Destroyer, immediately granting 5 combo points and cause your finishing moves to generate 5 combo points. Lasts 6 sec.

Hunter (Forums / Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • Froststorm Breath (Chimaera) now deals [205 + 11.52% of Ranged AP] Froststorm damage, up from [170 + 9.6% of RAP]. Now affects all enemies within 12 yards, up from 7 yards.
  • Burrow Attack (Worm) now deals [1640 + 92.16% of Ranged AP] Nature damage, up from [1432 + 76.8% of RAP].

Paladin (Forums / Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)

Warlock (Forums / Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
  • Cataclysm now increases Fire spell damage by 25%, down from 30%.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Live Mists of Pandaria Developer Q&A

Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Q: How will one get to the continent of Pandaria?
A: Players will get to Pandaria via new quests from Orgrimmar and Stormwind. We have tried to make these quests short and sweet to make sure players can into the new continent as fast as possible.

Q: Any plans to fix pet stats being too low for a few seconds after spawning?
A: We are fixing pets so stats won't lag several seconds after logging in or dismounting in 5.0.

Q: Currently, it was announced that Monks might not have an auto-attack feature. With the lack of auto-attacks, are there plans on balancing the values for Hit Rating and Haste Rating for a DPS-spec'ed Monk, since one would only need to reach the "soft" hit cap (8%) for specials and Haste Rating will only be affecting their power regeneration and reducing their GCD?
A: Monks will have the same hit cap as e.g. an Arms warrior and their energy regen drives everything they do, so their regen will scale the same as rogues and haste in general will scale their damage by the same percentages.

Q: At Blizzcon Tom Chilton mentioned possible incentives for raiding enemy towns to encourage world PVP in mists, can Greg or Cory elaborate on this at all?
A: In regards to extra rewards for world pvp, we are contemplating the idea of increasing players conquest point caps by an extra 10-15%.

Q: With the new talent system, will you start to follow the model in place with Collosus Smash, where a move functions completely differently in PVE and PVP?
A: We don't have a problem with specific mechanics working differently in PvP and PvE. Curse of Doom worked that way for years. Same with PvP durations on debuffs. What we don't want to do is just launch into having different coefficients and talents and everything for PvP and PvE. That just doubles the size of the game which makes it more complex to balance and harder for players to understand.

Q: Currently in 4.2 as a Balance Druid I have to kill critters before every boss fight so that I start in Solar Eclipse. Is there going to be more critters in MoP or even better, a cooldown that puts us straight into an eclipse?
A: We don't think the answer is more critter spawning in instances. We don't have a specific solution we're ready to announce, but we plan to address the problem.

Q: Where do we level from 85 to 90?
A: You'll leveling on the new continent of Pandaria, of course!

Q: Hey there. Will Pandaria have a new Dalaran like city or will we be using the ones already existing ingame?
A: We will have separate player hubs for both the Horde and Alliance on Pandaria. Separate hubs means we do not have to make them sanctuary and will encourage world PVP. These hubs will have access to an AH, Bank and general vendors. Valor, conquest, profession and faction vendors will be scattered around the world to encourage travel.

Q: Will there be more guild levels in MoP, if so how far will the cap go and do you have any examples of new perks?
A: We will be adding new levels to the guild leveling system for Mists of Pandaria. These new levels will come with new perks too! An example of a couple perks we are thinking about are reduced cost on void storage and transmogrification.

Q: Are you still considering expanding the proposed talent system or is the general form already set? As in, is there still the possibility of get more choice from the new system? (Six overall specializing skills seems quite limiting)
A: We tried a lot of tiers. We were worried at more than 6 that the combinatorial complexity of >729 different variations of talents would be challenging to balance or for players to even comprehend. We want to focus on having fewer awesome talents than many tiers that will force us to dilute individual abilities in the name of balance (for example, if you ended up with 6 forms of crowd control, then all of them need to be pretty weak).

Q: Where exactly is Pandaria located on Azeroth? many speculate that it is in the south, but I have always assumed it was to the west of Kalimdor.
A: You'll be leveling on the new continent of Pandaria, of course!

Q: Hey there. Will Pandaria have a new Dalaran like city or will we be using the ones already existing ingame?
A: We will have separate player hubs for both the Horde and Alliance on Pandaria. Separate hubs means we do not have to make them sanctuary and will encourage world PVP. These hubs will have access to an AH, Bank and general vendors. Valor, conquest, profession and faction vendors will be scattered around the world to encourage travel.

Q: Will there be more guild levels in MoP, if so how far will the cap go and do you have any examples of new perks?
A: We will be adding new levels to the guild leveling system for Mists of Pandaria. These new levels will come with new perks too! An example of a couple perks we are thinking about are reduced cost on void storage and transmogrification.

Q: Are you still considering expanding the proposed talent system or is the general form already set? As in, is there still the possibility of get more choice from the new system? (Six overall specializing skills seems quite limiting)
A: We tried a lot of tiers. We were worried at more than 6 that the combinatorial complexity of >729 different variations of talents would be challenging to balance or for players to even comprehend. We want to focus on having fewer awesome talents than many tiers that will force us to dilute individual abilities in the name of balance (for example, if you ended up with 6 forms of crowd control, then all of them need to be pretty weak).

Q: Since we're getting an account wide "pet library" so to speak, do you have any plans to extend this functionality to the mount page? Many players are hanging onto exclusive mounts on older/unplayed characters.
A: We will be testing out account wide features with pet battles and if it proves successful there, we would certainly want to the same thing with mounts.

Q: Often as an enhancement shaman, I find that weapon drops, specifically agility one handers, are always rare or not made to be slow (I know slow daggers seem pretty odd, but stay with me here). Is there any chance we would be able to reforge swing speeds?
A: We don't want minute differences in weapon speed to have a non-obvious, massive effect. We like daggers being fast and other weapons being slow and will make shaman etc. mechanics work around that.

Q: During the first discussion on talents, you revealed that Druids would be receiving a fourth talent tree to differentiate between bears and cats. I think this has been mostly received as a positive change by the community. You also stated that the notion of a hybrid tax is an antiquated view on class structure. Are there any plans to provide unique buffs to the four pure DPS classes to compensate for their lack of diversity, or maybe, creating a 4th spec in their areas that would allow for another role, such as a tanking Warlock?
A: We don't want to have unique buffs per DPS spec within a class, but we do want to make sure the DPS specs do offer utility that the tanks and healers can't bring alone. We also want to have greater variety and richness among specs for those classes with multiple DPS specs (e.g. hunter, warrior). We definitely want for there to be a reason to bring pures to a group as well.

Q: In regards to the Challenge Mode dungeons, how many of the dungeons will offer these modes and will our entire level/stats be reduced to a level equal to lower level dungeons if applicable?
A: We are hoping to have challenge mode dungeons enabled for all 9 of the new Mists of Pandaria dungeons. Assuming we like how it pans out, we would certainly be excited to extend the feature to more classic dungeons or raids.

Q: With shadow orbs becoming a new resource, do you have any plans to improve the interface to make tracking shadows orbs easier, like what was done with paladins?
A: If you saw the way we handled the monk resource bar at Blizzcon, we are experimenting with doing that for various classes and specs who have resources like that. So we could move shadow orbs down in the middle of the screen for Shadow priests if that paradigm works out.

Q: Will you consider giving glyphs the same treatment as the talent trees? Glyphs are also somewhat cookie cutter, as passive damage increases are not fun and are mandatory for any player wishing to compete
A: We aren't happy at all with Prime glyphs because they are no-brainers (but often mathy to figure that out). We want to expand the Major glyphs because that is where the real decisions lie. Not sure of the future of Primes quite yet. They *might* go away. (Don't freak, scribes!)

Q: With MoP you're introducing the pet battles. Will that be a new way of earning XP and/or valor points ?
A: We are hoping to implement XP gain for pet battles in a similar way to what players see with gathering professions now. You would not want to level your entire character just on pet battles, but we do think you should be rewarded for participating in it.

Q: So with the removal of talent points it seems like players leveling lose their "awesome I just got zealotry" feeling. Though the new talent system seems interesting and unique the gap between each 15 levels makes a dullish feeling in between each gap. Any word on how this will play out?
A: Couple of points. With Ret specifically, we wanted to try and address some of the feedback from players about the rotation. Divine Purpose and Zealotry add too much complication or RNG for some players, which is why we think they make good optional mechanics. Overall, when you see the rate at which you get new spells, you are still rewarded about every other character level (much like today). There are just a lot of core or spec spells that used to be no-brainer talents.

Q: I think I read somewhere that resilience is becoming a base stat in MoP -- if this is the case, what does that mean for PvP gear and/or does this mean that end game guilds will be top in PvP.
A: Resilience will still be an important stat for competitive PvP. Likewise, PvE gear will still be the best gear for PvE. The hope is to lower the barrier of entry by making the gap smaller (but not trivial).

Q: One of the current issues discouraging World pvp is the presence of highly overpowered guards around cities and hubs, 1-shotting anyone who engages in PvP. How will this be in MoP?
A: We know this is an issue in the current game and we plan to address it in Mists. We want to encourage world PVP, not make it a one-shot game for NPC guards. This is one of the main reasons we decided to make two separate player hubs instead of a shared sanctuary.

Q: Will pet battles be created the same way as duals?
A: We will let players duel other players that are near them in the world, but we will also have a queuing system you can join to fight against other pet trainers of similar level.

Q: I see two new poisons given to rogues in the new talent system, does this indicate we'll be seeing poisons reworked for MoP? As it is the Assassination spec relies so heavily on the instant/deadly combo for damage it's not viable to use anything else.
A: We are reworking poisons. For starters, rogue damage is balanced around the expectation of two damage poisons, which makes it really brutal to use a utility poision instead. In MoP, you will have one damage poison and one utility poison so you can choose which utility poison to use (and not IF you want a utility poison). We also want to reduce the amount of ramping that rogue DPS requires, such as removing the need for Deadly Poison to stack. (And likewise we want to make Bandit's Guile less punitive when swapping targets.)

Q: Will the pandarian racial that benefits XP bonus give them twice the blue bar for the same amount rested, or will it give you a larger multiplier when receiving XP?
A: Their blue bar (rested XP) will last longer before running out.

Q: The island of Pandaria is set to be located on the back of a giant turtle, will this turtle go under water?
A: The starting zone for new Pandaren is located on The Wandering Isle (the turtle). The continent of Pandaria itself is not a turtle, its a piece of land.

Q: Is there any chance of a new spell for paladins to fill the role of Holy Wrath for single target fights?
A: Holy Wrath becomes a nuke for Holy. Ret and Prot will generate Holy Power from Judgment, Exorcism procs, Hammer of Wrath and other abilities that make sense. We still want there to be some small gaps in rhe rotation, but smooth over some of the frustration of today.

Q: How does the new death knight talent Asphyxiate work at this point? Does it last until the target takes damage, like Repentance or Hex, or is it channeled like the succubus minion's Seduction?
A: Asphyxiate lasts 5 sec. There was a typo in the Blizzcon presentation. Asphyxiate is the same duration as Strangulate, which it replaces.

Q: What's going to happen to the currently existing Relics once the MoP arrives? will they be turned into gold/grey trash/off-hands/trinkets?
A: Relics will turn into gray items that you can vendor.

Q: My questions concerns the limits to Pandaren faction chat. How do you intend to deal with if you meet someone at the starting pandaren area and friend each other (not RealID) yet choose seperate factions?
A: Much like the worgen and goblins cannot leave their starting areas, you cannot friend a fellow pandaren until she has chosen her faction.

Q: At Blizzcon you stated that mage's primary nukes will be spec specific ( Fireball for Fire, Arcane Blast for Arcane, and Frostbolt for Frost). However, what will happen to Frostfire bolt? Currently it is only used by Frost Mages and only when a talent procs. Is this spell going to be reworked or simply removed from the game?
A: Frostfire Bolt is the starting spell at level 1. You get Frostbolt, Fireball or Arcane Blast at level 10. Fire or Arcane can still use Frostfire if they want a snare, or when Brain Freeze procs for Frost.

Q: I have a question about dungeons... many people have complained that there were not very many dungeons this expansion (compared to the number of dungeons in 1-60 Azeroth, Outland, and even Northrend). In Cataclysm endgame, there were very few normal dungeons for a casual player to easily PuG, and the rest are perhaps a dozen or so heroics (which do get boring after doing the same ones over and over!). Do you plan to have more dungeons come MoP? Will there be more choices for both regular AND heroic versions to have a little something for everyone?
A: We will have 9 normal mode dungeons at launch for Mists of Pandaria. 6 of those will be on Pandaria and 3 will be classic heroics (Scholomance and Scarlet Monastery). All of these dungeons will have a normal, heroic and challenge mode version. We are currently planning to not have any max level, non-heroic dungeons. Most players never found a good niche for dungeons at that tuning level.

Q: With MoP featuring the battle between the alliance and the horde, can we expect to see more prominent roles or appearances from famous NPCs?
A: Yes, we certainly are.

Q: Is drain life ,death coil and soul harvest being removed since there are similar talents in it's place?
A: Harvest of Life upgrades Drain Life (Drain Life turns into Harvest, which is a mechanic we use for several spells such as Strangulate -> Asphyxiate and HoJ -> Fist of Justice). Soul Harvest is being removed, but shards passively regen outside of combat or can Drain Soul in combat to replace them. Mortal Coil is the new Death Coil.

Q: Will there be a system where you can turn pet battles on/off at will? Sometimes I don't want to be pestered by obnoxious pet owners that constantly want to duel. Or perhaps I don't want to get a random encountet while trying to get anywhere. Anyways, will there be an option to switch pet battles off temporarily?
A: We will have an option to disable invites to pet battles. Similar to what we have for player duels.

Q: The new Cold Snap talent resets Ice Block, Frost Nova, and Water Elemental. I realize that the talents are early, but given that the first two are baseline, might this mean that the Elemental (like Living Bomb) is becoming a core mage spell?
A: Water Elemental is a Frost spec spell.

Q: How does the new warlock talent that allows you to move while casting, but doubles cast time affect channeled spells?
A: Channeled spells take twice as long to tick after you have started moving with that talent.

Q: One of the issues with the Outland expansion was that it felt too 'off-worldly'. Northrend resolved this a bit by actually taking place -on- Azeroth, and Cataclysm brought back that wholesome Azerothian nostalgia. How does Pandaria handle this issue, considering how foreign the land (and indeed, the entire Pandaren lore) is to the world? When you're playtesting MoP, how do -you- feel about the land?
A: We are actually working very hard on this specific concept. Pandaria is based on Asian landscapes but its important to remember that these landscapes need to feel like they fit in Azeroth, not the real world. So far, we feel really great about how we are doing on this. Hopefully that was clear to players at BlizzCon as well!

Q: What place will the World Bosses have in the scheme of raid difficulty and the item level of gear they drop? Will they be a mandatory part of the raiding cycle?
A: We want the world bosses to be optional, kind of like Baradin Hold.

Q: Are we going to require items to change talents like changing the glyphs?
A: Yes. Our goal (which is more important than the mechanism) is that we don't want swapping talents to be a huge pain, but don't want it to be so easy that making the choice isn't interesting. We don't want players to feel the need to swap talents in 5-player dungeons or for every trash pull in a raid.

Q: How big are the MoP areas going to be in comparison to say Outlands or Northrend?
A: The zones themselves are quite large, even bigger when you take into consideration that you will not be able to use your flying mount until level 90. If I was to guess, I would say you could imagine the entire continent feeling like all 5 of the Cataclysm 80-85 zones combined.

Q: Will their be any raid size PvE scenarios?
A: One step at a time, grasshopper. ;D

Q: Will there be a way for pandaran to switch factions (once) after they choose alliance/horde? Can they defect?
A: We are currently planning for this to be a permanent choice.

Q: I play Enhance - with 4.3 the cooldown for Wind Shear is going to 26 seconds untalented, with Talents back to 5 Seconds, when MoP comes out those talents are gone. Are there plans to give the 5 second Wind Shear to Enhance as a base skill, or can I kiss my reputation as my Guild's top interrupter goodbye?
A: We want Enhance to still have a frequent interrupt that locks out for less time than other interrupts. However, overall we want to reduce the frequency of interrupts and increase their duration so that when you use them is more of a decision. We want them to be more impactful for both the interrupter and target rather than a spammy nuisance.

Q: Any plans to rework the crowd control system? Currently fear is not a reliable form of CC unless a glyph is used so they won't move others, like warriors have no real CC at all. Speaking of which, how much CC will be needed in the new dungeons?
A: We're currently exploring ways for Fear to behave more consistently without the glyph, but don't have a precise answer yet.

Q: Regarding the talent trees, will there be trees as we know them at all? I like the way you guys are moving with talents, but I wasn't sure if combat/assassination/subtlety would exist anymore at all? Using a rogue as an example, will all three trees be merged into 'Rogue' now? It's hard to tell from the examples given.
A: Specs as you know them will still exist. At level 10 you can choose Assassination and get Mutilate. We want the specs (especially for the pure classes) to be more distinct than they are today since some of the signature utility is now available to all members of that class. Specs will contain core rotational mechanics and the tools needed to perform your role. Talents complement that with various forms of utility.

Q: I don't like PvP, I play on a PvP server, because my friends on a PvP server and most people from my country is playing on that particular server. I have to face world PvP every time I am doing my business in the new hubs in Pandaria? I love the new zone, but I don't want to be backstabbed by a rogue while I am selling my stuff, or buying equipment. Can non-interested players avoid the world PvP
A: Yes, we certainly don't want you to always be back-stabbed while you are setting up your auctions. However, if a group of the opposing faction wants to form a raid and attack your city, we want them to have a chance to be successful. So yes and no. =)

Q: There seemed to be a bit of a backlash at BlizzCon against the idea of counters in the Pet Battle System. An example would be a water-based pet (Murloc) vs. a fire-based pet (Lil' Ragnaros). This makes the fighting seem a bit more intricate, but I can understand the desire to have Pet Battles be easier to approach. Is there any thought to more than one skill level?
A: We intend to create a simple combat system with some engaging depth. We're still in the process hashing out the details. Suggestions are certainly welcome!

Q: So far everything I have heard about the expansion sounds too good to be true! I was wondering however - I had heard that Cooking will become a primary skill, but others say I have misheard/read this. But wouldn't it make the Pandaren racial moot if that were the case? Can you clarify?
A: Cooking will remain a secondary skill. We do have some cool stuff planned to match the Pandaren love of cooking. For example, you can choose to specialize in different styles of cooking. For example, grilling may create Strength food. You can choose the specialization that makes the most sense for your character and still unlock feasts at the end, or you can try and learn all specializations.

Q: What will be the new cap for professions? Do you plan to create any new professions?
A: The new cap for professions is 600 and we are currently not planning to add a new profession. We are hoping that pet battles will offer a fun, new type of activity for players to do that offers an alternative to player power progression.

Q: Will there be any grasshoppers?
A: Yes! It actually just got checked into the game by the artists today! Going to be awesome to use in pet battles!

Q: Do you plan on making talent options for each class spec or only 1 set per class. In the preview it seemed that each tier complimented a specific spec rather the class. Also if you believe that talents should be fun choices why put damage dealing spells in the talent options rather then make them only things that increase movement speed, change rotation (ie makes 1 spell faster to cast),.This new system will not kill off cookie cutter builds if things people view as optional are mixed in with abilities. Make abilities base line with spec/leveling and make talents optional increases in power not through damage like the disc priest talent soul warding or rogues improved slice and dice....they both increases possible damage without a direct damage increase. Any comments?
A: The damage-dealing talents aren't core rotational abilities, but situational or utility abilities. When there is a damage option, it should compete against other damage options. The idea is to get away from cookie cutter builds. We don't think there is always a right answer for whether you'd choose to run for longer or more often. Even today, guides will say "choose what you want" for those options. Some talents will probably be better situationally (if the boss can't be interrupted, then your interrupt talent isn't so sexy for that fight), but every e.g. shaman should not have the same talent set at the same time, or our design has failed.

Q: What will happen to passive abilities like trueshot aura, arcane tactics, improved icy talons and unleashed rage? Where will they go in the new talent system?
A: Many of those become passive abilities you get for your spec. We are removing some of the less interesting buffs and debuffs (+bleed damage, armor, 3% damage, resists are all on the chopping block at the moment).

Q: At Blizzcon it was mentioned that PvE Scenarios will be something that we will queue for...Will we be required to be in the area that the PvE Scenario will take place in order to queue, or will we be able to queue for them from the cities like we do for the Dungeon Finder. If they are instanced events how will this "get the players out into the world" other than standing around a specific area waiting for the queue to pop, or am I missing the idea?
A: We are planning to only let players queue for scenarios from specific spots in the world (where the scenario is located), not in the cities. We want players out in the world, not spamming the queue button in cities.

Q: Is there any chance we'll be seeing more weapons with procs? Something akin to thunderfury, sulfuras, or even the Revenge of Kalimdor?
A: Yes, proc weapons are fun. There are several in the 4.3 raid. We will add more.

Q: What will the pandas ride? non anthropomorphic pandas?
A: We are still working on ideas for their mount. An epic turtle is certainly one of the most popular options around the office right now!

Q: At Blizzcon you said that demolocks will create demonic fury and turn into a demon when it is maxed out. will this be automatically or will we be able to choose when we use our full demonic fury?
A: You have control over when you transform. The amount of Demonic Fury you have determines the duration of the Metamorphosis.

Q: Can other people watch the pets battle?
A: We are working really, really hard to have spectating for the pet battles. Trust me, we want it just as bad as you guys. Stay tuned.

Q: With the world PvP that is being talked about, are there any plans to add any Quest Hubs in Mists of Pandaria which functions like a smaller scale of Baradin Hold/Wintergrasp that will change faction when it is assaulted? Maybe even ones with actual leveling quests instead of just more dailies to add a dynamic questing experience like the ones that were talked about at Blizzcon?
A: Yes, this is exactly the kind of thing we are thinking about. We will share more info on our ideas for this soon. The idea is that we want to give players more options and not just always have one place to go or one thing to do.

Q: What exactly is a PvE scenario?
A: It's a short, instanced 2-3 player experience without the need for a tank/healer. Think of them as a short series of group quests with a queuing option available.

Q: It's clear from the consideration and thought you give your answers that you all have a deep understanding of the theory behind MMOs. Is this all knowledge learned on-the-job, or did you have any guidance such as school or peers when making these design decisions?
A: There isn't a lot of formal training that goes into it (though that seems to be improving over time). A lot of it is playing a lot of games, but it helps to have a bunch of really smart dudes on the WoW team (and throughout the company) who can poke holes in what you were certain is a brilliant idea. The guys behind the scenes don't get enough credit for the success of our games.

Q: Will there be any new underwater zones in MoP? I personally loved Vashj' and would hope that there's at least some mini-zone in the starting area or something.
A: Nope, we are not making another Vashj'ir. Glad you liked it though! =)

Q: I'm in a high end raiding guild and if the racials for Panderan stay as is, we are almost all going to have to race change. Do you plan to have the Panderan racials (specifically the double food buff) nearly balanced with the other races on release or do you want them to be the best to start with so more people play them?
A: The food buff is the equivalent of racials like the haste or crit buffs of the goblin and worgen. We are still evaluating the power of our primary vs. secondary stats. Primary stats (Agi etc.) are a bit good right now, but that also helps ensure that new tiers of gear are nearly always upgrades.

Q: Will Arms Warriors do an equal amount of damage when using Bladestorm (lvl 90 talent) as Fury warriors, who have double weapons over arms?
A: We don't want there to be obvious talent decisions. We can make Bladestorm do more damage with two weapons or let Arms do more damage to keep Arms vs. Fury equivalent.

Q: When do we except this x-pack to come out? (hopefully not late 2012)
A: Based on what we showed at Blizzcon, hopefully sooner rather than later. =)

Q: Just have to say Blizzard are doing a wicked job with this expansion. It is very hard to hype up an expansion without some epic badass villain. The idea of the raging war between the two factions and the Pandaren being stuck in the middle (somehow trying to find peace?) looks to be so cleverly laid out. So very well done for that. New talent system is one of your best ideas yet. Just one question. How will the story be planned out with no villain, will there be a consecutive story eg every patch will release a raid focusing onto the main raid in the last patch. Or will every patch be unique in terms of story?
A: There are definitely villains in Mists of Pandaria. We just didn't want to put one on the "box cover" so to speak (we don't know what the box looks like yet of course). You have seen some of them, like the mogu. We know who the final boss is. Seriously. It's just too epic to share. Yet.

Curse of the Worgen Hardcover Available!

Blizzard Entertainment and DC Comics are proud to announce the release of the hardcover collection of the hit comic series World of Warcraft: Curse of the Worgen!
The once-mighty kingdom of Gilneas now finds itself under siege from outside and within. While Forsaken armies amass along its great wall, a rash of brutal murders in the capital hints at an even more sinister threat hidden amongst the populace.
Enter Halford Ramsey, famed investigator to the king, who will stop at nothing to catch the elusive killer. Unraveling the clues, Halford soon discovers that he has been targeted by the true menace behind the killings: worgen, cursed wolf-men spoken of only in legend, and the mysterious "Wolf Cult" that worships them. Ramsey is quickly drawn into a 10,000-year-old epic of love, tragedy, and betrayal set amid the ancient night elves' war against the demonic Burning Legion. Now infected by the curse of the worgen, Halford must contain the beast seething within him and put an end once and for all to the diabolical plot that threatens to ruin Gilneas.
Look for the hardcover collection of World of Warcraft: Curse of the Worgen at local and online comic book retailers!

Local Comic Retailers

raidCD reset - twice a week on taiwan realms. (Coming To Other Regions In The Future)

On taiwan realms, CDs of all raids released in 4.0 and 4.2 will be reseted on Thu 9:00 and Sun 21:00 twice a week, VP is still 980/week.

you can try google translate.

 From Vaneras (Blue Poster) (Source)
This is correct :-)

Our goal is indeed to expand this change to other regions in the future, however thorough testing is required. We will of course let you know once we are ready, but at this point in time we have nothing further to announce.

From Zarhym (Blue Poster) (Source)

The new raid lockout changes for Taiwan and Korea adjust the lockout timers for the patch 4.0 and 4.2 raids. The lockout timers for these raids will now reset twice weekly instead of once. These raid lockout changes are being made to allow players to raid more often and get more chances at epic loot drops. Players will be able to down current Cataclysm raid bosses twice a week, accelerating players’ progression.

We are testing these new raid lockout changes in Taiwan and Korea first. Our goal is to expand this change to other regions in the future, but we don’t have anything further to announce at this time with regard to North American implementation.

New Features for the World of Warcraft Mobile Armory for Android!

The World of Warcraft Mobile Armory has just been updated! Check out all the improvements we’ve included in the latest version:
  • Automatic price undercutting: Set the default buyout price of your auctions to match or undercut the current lowest buyout price for an item
  • Aggregated buyout search results: Multiple auctions posted at the same buyout price can now be viewed as a single group
  • Support for the following Guild features: Level, Perks, Rewards, Achievements, News, Events, and MotD
  • Realm Status
  • Search now suggests terms based on previous searches and matching items
  • Talent Calculator
  • Various bug fixes
If you aren’t already connected with the World of Warcraft Mobile Armory, you can download it now from the Android Market.
Android is a trademark of Google Inc. Portions of this page are reproduced from work created and shared by Google and used according to terms described in the Creative Commons 3.0 Attribution License.

Pet Battles and Development Time

This is what Zarhym shared with the community on the US boards:

He discusses our plans for Mists of Pandaria’s Pet Battle System and our philosophy about adding features to the game.

"We do add features to the game often based on concepts players have expressed interest in. But in order to dedicate ourselves to making epic games, we also need to spend a lot of time and resources anticipating what gamers of all walks of life will find fun. That's how all of our games thus far have been created. While our design decisions for any game will always be met with mixed reactions, we couldn't be respected in our industry if our approach to game design is always reactive.

As was said multiple times by Game Director Tom Chilton at BlizzCon, we want more content systems and forms of progression in the game so our extremely diverse playerbase has a lot of choices over what to spend time doing for fun, accomplishment, socializing, a challenge, etc.

A lot of players are really going to love this feature. It's going to be an engaging mini-game that actually has quite a bit of depth and progression, just not in the traditional sense of increasing your character's power. That shouldn't always have to be a driving factor in our content. As the Old Guard players have said countless time before, Southshore and Tarren Mill world PvP battles didn't become popular because there was a tangible reward incentive. The majority of World of Warcraft systems and content, particularly at level 85, are currently directed at enhancing a character's power. While that won't fully change, we want to continue creating new avenues to make that happen as well, such as is the case with adding a third, more accessible raid tier with the Raid Finder, or adding PvE Scenarios to facilitate the quick formation of smaller groups to take on a series of event-driven quests.

But Pet Battles and Dungeon Challenges are very different. With one, you're actually getting a use out of the pets you've collected over the years, in order to progress them in a fun mini-game, unlock countless more pets, and just generally give your character a new depth of style and flavor. Similarly, Dungeon Challenges are difficult 5-player dungeons which really allow you to push your skills and PvE small group coordination to the limits. They'll scale, so the better you do, the better you're rewarded and ranked. That gives your character a new measurement of PvE progression prowess and bragging rights. Plus, you can earn exclusive set designs which are purely aesthetic — to be used with Transmogrification — which, again, give your character a new depth of style and flavor.

It's about giving people options in the game to play it how they want to. We have a lot of people playing, so with almost seven years of World of Warcraft on the market, we want to continue innovating features we believe people will enjoy experiencing in this game. And a hell of a lot of thought, discussion, debate, and iteration at Blizzard goes into this stuff :)

The way various development resources are expended on creating features for the game is extremely complicated and very unique to each project. That can't be explained in a way that will be fully understood by the community at all times, in all situations. While we understand your point is that no resources should be spent on pet battles, you're really not in a place to make a well-referenced argument about what features in development are taking time away from others you feel are more pertinent."

Free Character Migration (FCM)

The below FCM is available until November 2 2011. The migrations are open to both factions:

From: Outland
To: Chromaggus
To: Dragonmaw
To: Executus
To: Karazhan
To: Laughing Skull

Discussion on this particular migration can be found in this thread on the Outland realm forum:

Please note: FCM is opened based on realm population tracking and analysis, not by request. If you're looking for a specific migration (from realm A to realm B), you are in most cases better off using Paid Character Transfer, or you could end up waiting for a very long time.

Paid Character Transfers (PCT)
All English realms follow the regular PCT rules, found here:

Patch 4.3 - PTR Patch 14890

Death Knight Tier 13

New Models - Chromatic Dragon and Chromatic Dragon Mount

A new PTR build is being deployed on test realms.

Item Sets Changes
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
Druid (Forums / Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)

Shaman (Forums / Talent Calculator / Skills/Talents)
Client Strings
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
  • ERR_LFG_JOINED_RF_QUEUE = "You are now queued in the Raid Finder.";
  • ERR_PARTY_LFG_BOOT_VOTE_REGISTERED = "Your request to kick %s has been successfully received.";
  • ERR_SOR_STARTING_EXPERIENCE_INCOMPLETE = "You must complete your starting experience before you can redeem your Scroll of Resurrection rewards.";
  • INELIGIBLE_BOSSES = "You will not be eligible to loot the following: %s";
  • LFG_MUST_SELECT_ROLE = "You must select one role.";
  • LFG_ROLE_UNAVAILABLE = "The group does not need players for this role.";
  • PLAYER_DIFFICULTY3 = "Raid Finder";
  • RF_COOLDOWN_ADDITIONAL_PEOPLE = "and %d other |4player:players;.";
  • RF_COOLDOWN_OTHER = "The following players in your group have recently queued for a Raid and may not yet queue again:";
  • RF_COOLDOWN_YOU = "You recently queued for a Raid.\nYou may queue for another in:";
  • SPELL_FAILED_CUSTOM_ERROR_149 = "You cannot deconstruct Elementium Gem Clusters while collecting them!";
Achievements Changes
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion
Dungeons & Raids

Cataclysm Raid
  • Heroic: Madness of Deathwing now rewards the "Savior of Azeroth" title instead of "Avenger of the Five Flights"
  • Destroyer's End Defeat Deathwing on Normal or Heroic Difficulty in the Dragon Soul raid. Title: Destroyer's End
  • Don't Stand So Close to Me Defeat Morchok in Dragon Soul on Normal or Heroic Difficulty without any two players (three players on 25-player mode) ever being within 5 yards of each other while Morchok is channeling Black Blood of the Earth.
  • Holding Hands Destroy the final Crystal Conductor during Hagara's lightning phase on Normal or Heroic Difficulty, while all raid members are part of the final Lightning Conduit.
  • Chromatic Champion Destroy Deathwing in Dragon Soul on Normal or Heroic Difficulty after beginning the encounter on each Aspect's platform:
  • Minutes to Midnight wording clarified to "on Normal and Heroic difficulty"
  • Deck Defender wording clarified to "on Normal and Heroic difficulty"
  • Ping Pong Champion wording clarified to "on Normal and Heroic difficulty"
  • Taste the Rainbow! wording clarified to "on Normal and Heroic difficulty"
  • Maybe He'll Get Dizzy... wording clarified to "on Normal and Heroic difficulty"

Feats of Strength

Guild - Feats of Strength
Spell Changes
Originally Posted by MMO-Champion

Companion Pets

  • Experiment 12-B Summons and dismisses a rideable Experiment 12-B. This is a flying mount. 1.5 sec cast
  • Heart of the Aspects Summons and dismisses the Heart of the Aspects. This mount changes depending on your Riding skill and location. 1.5 sec cast
  • Blazing Drake Summons and dismisses a rideable Blazing Drake. This is a flying mount. 1.5 sec cast

  • Blood Presence now increases armor contribution from cloth, leather, mail and plate items by 55%. Up from 30%.

  • Bear Form now increases Stamina by 20%, up from 10%.



  • Explosive Shot now scales from 27.3% of Ranged Attack Power, up from 23.2%.

  • Seal of Truth now scales from 13.5% of Attack Power, up from 9.65%.

  • Beacon of Light now affects your Word of Glory, Holy Shock, Flash of Light, Divine Light and Light of Dawn. (And I have no idea if it's a change or a wording change)

  • Earthquake now scales from 11% of Spell Power (Going to assume it's just a tooltip fix to actually reflect spell power changes in-game)

  • Master Demonologist now increases damage done by demon servants and damage dealt while transformed by 18.4%, down from 20%. Each point of Mastery increases damage by an additional 2.3%, down from 2.5%.


Sunday, October 23, 2011

Theramore to be destroyed by the Horde in 5.0?

It seems that Theramore will be destroyed by the Horde in the pre-Mists of Pandaria world events, the info was revealed to a couple of taiwanese websites attending a press event with Tom Chilton.

Translation from Curll on ScrollsOfLore.

整個戰爭會從潘達利亞的迷霧資料片上市前會啟動世界事件,來強化 聯盟根部落的戰鬥,塞拉摩這城市摧毀讓聯盟 高層非常暴怒,也會以此為契機強化這兩方的戰鬥,未來整個戰鬥會 蔓延在潘達利亞大陸上,部落與聯盟也會在上 面發動許多的戰鬥以及與熊貓人的互動。

Here's the original quote. Let me translate:
The whole war will be ignited during the world event which leading the game into Mist of Pandaria. Theramore will be destroyed and the leaders of Alliance were outrageous at this matter and completely devote themselves into the war, which reach its peak on the continent of Pandaria. The Horde and the Alliance literally fought on the homeland of Pandaria, which pissed the pandarens off.

在潘達利亞大陸上的 npc 多是中立角色,一部分的熊貓人覺得部落跟聯盟帶來厄運,並對它們 帶有敵意,玩家玩的熊貓人是早已脫離潘達利 亞的熊貓人,在等級達到之後選擇加入陣營,所以是沒有首領可以去 扁的。
Most of the pandarens are neutral characters. And some of them thought the Horde and the Alliance only brought doom to their beloved homeland, and have enmity against both factions. The players pandarens are in a different group. They departed Pandaria long ago and choose their own path. They choose their own faction when level 10, so they don't have a faction leader.

Blizzcon 2011 - Pandaren Gameplay

Friday, October 21, 2011

World of Warcraft - Mists of Pandaria B-roll Clip + Dungeons and Raids Panel

WoW Dungeons and Raids Panel

While much of the World of Warcraft buzz around BlizzCon has thus far been focused on the pandaren race, monk class, and talent system overhaul, there remains the question: what are you going to do with all of it?

The World of Warcraft Dungeons and Raids panel recently kicked off to answer that very question. Who are the big bad guys you need to kill, and where can you kill them?

Three new dungeons were shown out of the nine total planned in the initial release of the expansion, starting with Temple of the Jade Serpent, the first dungeon you’ll encounter while leveling from 85 to 90. In this dungeon you’ll be tasked with defeating the Sha of Doubt, one of the elemental enemies threatening the shrouded continent and sacred pandaren ways.

The second dungeon previewed was the Stormstout Brewery. Chen Stormstout of WarCraft III fame is a revered figure within pandaren culture, and his brewery has been overrun by the Verming and Hozu, a couple of the less-than-savory races that also inhabit Pandaria. You’re tasked with reclaiming his family heritage… and his beer.

The third dungeon previewed at BlizzCon was the Shado-pan Monastery. Located in Kun-Lai Summit, this mountain retreat serves as the home and training grounds of the mysterious Shado-pan Clan, a ninja-like pandaren faction dedicated to protecting Pandaria. Again, the Sha have been set free and threaten the Shado-pan’s base of operations, and you’re tasked with dispatching them.

In addition to the three new dungeons that were shown, two classic dungeon crawls are getting the Deadmines treatment and will return in level-90 Heroic fashion. While they'll still be accessible in their lower-level form for those leveling their new pandaren, both Scarlet Monastery and Scholomance will be buffed up, spit-shined, and made relevant to max-level characters with new, challenging encounters and equally high-level drops. Scholomance is returning with a more streamlined layout and the Scarlet Monastery, too big to return as one dungeon, is being split up into two wings. The Graveyard and Cathedral are being combined into one level-90 Heroic dungeon, and the Library and Armory into another. Whitemane's Chapeau for everyone!

Are you yawning at the idea of more five-player dungeons? You may be interested in Challenges. This is a new time trial system coming in Mists of Pandaria for level-90 dungeons. The challenge itself may not always be difficult, but ranking will be. Do well and you'll earn a bronze, silver, or gold medal. Completing the Challenge on gold will incur a stacking debuff on future attempts: it’ll start with a 5% debuff, but if you manage to finish with a gold medal time on that run you’ll receive a 10% debuff on your next run, and so on.

In addition to realm-wide bragging rights, completing Challenges will award you with unique Transmogrification items and other vanity rewards. Oh, did we forget to mention that your gear will be normalized? Sorry, no gearing up or stacking items to get the best times -- your item level will be normalized so that even when the next raid encounter comes out and new gear drops, your world-record will stand until some other group of chumps actually has the skill to beat it.

Challenges will be enabled during any dungeon run that supports them, including those joined through the Dungeon Finder. To help get people together that are looking to achieve the same goals, a special flag will be available to only match you with others looking to do Challenges if you do use the Dungeon Finder.

One of the three new raids launching with Mists of Pandaria was also unveiled: Mogu’Shan Palace. This six-boss raid is located in the Vale of Eternal Blossoms, and invites you to explore the hidden secrets of the elusive Mogu empire, one of the new indigenous Pandarian races.

In Cataclysm, Heroic dungeons were intentionally designed as gear and difficulty checks on the progression to raiding. In Mists of Pandaria, the Raid Finder will be the appropriate transition from running dungeons to Normal raids. Heroic dungeons will largely be tuned to be about as difficult as they were in Wrath of the Lich King, allowing players to fairly quickly down bosses in PUGs and hit their Valor Point caps. Valor Points will follow a new philosophy with 4.3, as a parallel way to gear up alongside the Raid Finder, but not as a fill-in for boss drops.

The overall goal for this expansion is that any time you log in, you should be able to make some kind of progress on your character. Whether that's through Normal or Heroic raiding, queuing for a Raid Finder run, hitting dailies for rewards and VP, busting out a scenario with some strangers, or joining some buddies for a dungeon Challenge, we want you to be making meaningful progression on your character. Some ways will be faster than others, but no matter what you choose to do, you'll be making progress.

The goals for dungeons and raids in Mists of Pandaria are to create epic and challenging experiences, but Cataclysm also helped us learn where we can improve with the new expansion. The Raid Finder will help with taking that first step into endgame content, and it will be available for all Mists of Pandaria raids. Beyond that, we want to create more easily understandable encounters and move away from mechanics that simply set up groups to fail, while still keeping them challenging.

We’re also looking to address some of the issues that came with how the zones and locations were spread out in Cataclysm. While that’s largely addressed with Pandaria simply being one continent, it also includes giving dungeons and raids more of a presence in the world. All of the dungeons and raids in Pandaria exist as actual locations you can walk up to and fly over, and aren’t just encapsulated experiences hidden behind a portal.

Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment

Shado-pan Monastery
  • Located in Kun-Lai Summit
  • Mountain retreat of the mysterious Shado-pan Clan
  • The Shado-pan protect Pandaria from hidden evil
  • The Sha have escaped! (Shado pan keep Sha caged in the monastery, but it's escaped and you're trying to help figure this out)
  • A great idea for layout..Changes into something more epic!
  • Like to do outdoor dungeons because there are so many indoor already. They jump at opportunity to make outdoor.

  • Level 90 Heroic
  • New layout with familiar rooms (shuffle rooms around to make a remix out of it)
  • Easier to navigate
  • Concentrate on the coolness (of Scholo and take away everything that didn't quite make the cut)

Scarlet Monastery
  • Level 90 Heroic
  • Too much awesome for one dungeon (Remixed and keep all the coolest rooms)
  • Split Monastery in two!
  • Graveyard + Cathedral
  • Armory + Library
  • Update all boss mechanics

Challenge Modes
  • For players looking for a greater challenge
  • Timed dungeons runs to earn medals. The concept of Zul'Aman timed runs and similar things is now turned into a brand new game mode!
  • It will work only on Pandaria dungeons at the beginning.
  • It will work with the Dungeon Finder tool.
  • Gear will be normalized, everyone is going to have the exact same item level on their gear. This is a skill based exercise and your gear doesn't matter.
  • Rewards will be very awesome looking gear for Transmogrification purposes (no stats). You will also get valor points since the new goal is to let you progress your characters no matter what you do.
  • Leaderboards will be available, you will be able to compare your performances with your guildies or even your entire realm!

  • The raids are going to feature the Mogu and the Mantids
  • All the new raids will work in Raid Finder, Normal, and Heroic difficulties.

Mogu'Shan Palace
  • Located atop Kun-Lai Summit at the center of Pandaria
  • Six boss raid
  • It will let you explore the hidden secrets of the ancien Mogu empire. Even the Pandarians pretty much never went to this place.

Raid Finder (Patch 4.3)
  • The concept came up when developers realized how succesful the dungeon finder is.
  • They want the raid content to be available to a wider audience, everyone should have a chance to see that new content. They wanted most players to be able to experience the fight against Deathwing, etc ...
  • The Raid Finder will have a Lower difficulty and rewards than Normal Difficulty. It won't be just a damage or health point reduction, mechanics will be reworked to make fights easier.
  • This is only in Dragon Soul in Patch 4.3, but it will be available in all raids in patch 5.0
  • Works for 25-Player and not with 10-Players, makes queue times much faster.

Goals for Mists of Pandaria
  • Keep the experience short and focused. Dungeons should be short enough to let you run a couple of dungeons when you feel like it, not just one.
  • Make encounters understandable and do not set up groups to fail. The dungeon journal has been added to the game to make sure that people don't die and wonder what the hell happened.
  • Fights will be made clearer and more understandable, the Dungeon Journal was a first step and the goal is to make fights even clearer. It also means that you shouldn't be able to just tank and spank and wonder what happened but still win.
  • Flex our creative Kung-fu. This expansion offers a lot of creative freedom and a lot of new stuff, developers tried to make sure that you'll get dragon punches and all kind of crazy and fun moves.

How is gear going to scale in the challenge mode?
We are currently planning for it to scale down. An alternative to scaling the gear would be to scale the monsters up, to make sure that players do not feel less powerful.

Regarding the dungeon finder and raid finder, are we going to be able to enter a random queue for possibly TBC raids, or WOTLK?
Currently weve talked about it a little bit, one of the things we are concerned about is that if there are actually people to fill that queue. We are not sure if raid finder is a fit for those cases. In the future we could do it.

Dungeons are now visible in outside world, but in BC there were also lots of these. Why did you not do this in Cata?
Over time we have dungeons that existed in outside world, and theres a secondary thing to it. for example the stormbrew brewery where quests actually go inside/around the dungeon. Historically we have had to scale them to be smaller, here they are 1:1 scale so they have awesome impact to the zones.

Can we do quests in a raid group?
Maybe, it has been talked about.

Why are kick wait timers so long?
It depends on how often that person has been kicked, as well as how often you kick people. It is modified dynamically.

Why did you start Cataclysm with so many bosses and raids, and then add so few in the later patches?
Plans aren't finalized for the first tier yet. It might be two or three different raids, loot distribution also needs to be worked out.

In Cataclysm, there is a very steep difficulty jump between normals and heroics, how are you going to handle that in MoP? Will there be more Level 90 normals?
We are currently not planning to have 90 normal dungeons in MoP.

Previous hard modes required internet research to figure out how to toggle them, now it is just a switch. Can we go back to the old way with multiple difficulites?
It was hard to come up with this kind of mechanic for all the bosses, it worked with bosses that had order or additional minibosses, but not most others. We are all for fun toggles, but most bosses don't need multiple difficulty modes.

Right now you currently randomly choose legendary to a class that hasnt got one for a while cant you make a quest chain where guilds can give the legendary to their most deserving raid member?
The questlines we are currently making have really class specific features, we could open it up but it would lose some of that exclusivity. Do you want unique and awesome or generic and boring?

The 10/25 man lockout is frustrating because I have nothing to do on my alt. Will Raid Finder let us join as a group with our guild?
You can queue with a group, there are no lockouts, and normal/heroic raids do not share any lockout with Raid Finder difficulty. (You only get loot once from Raid Finder)

For Cata, there are 3 raids that came in right from the expansion. Have you guys thought about a way to not make it so overwhelming? Is there going to be like a middle ground?
Essentially the number of bosses comes down to make sure we can spread the loot around. It mostly comes down to the number of bosses we can get down for a patch.

Are any more old classic WoW dungeons going to be remade, maybe Hogger?
Everyone loves them, but it is a matter of time. We made sure to get some in for Cataclysm launch, we want to add them whenever we have time to do so.

So when you guys announced 4.3 you said there were only going to be 7 bosses. You said you were going to focus on epicness and putting more work into them. Firelands only felt like half a raid. Is this omsething we can expect to see in the next raid tiering in MoP?
We want as many people as possible to experience that content. We were looking at the number of people getting kills on the raid bosses and there were not a lot. We immediately put out hotfixes to make sure more people can experience the content.

Is there any plan to seperate 10 and 25 man achievements again, especially server firsts?
There were some difficulty differences, it is something we have talked about but we aren't making any promises right now. Maybe in the future!

You were talking how challenge modes can be done for dungeons, are they also for raids and will they be unlocked immediatly or will they unlock gradually?
There is a chance we could do them for raids, we want to start out with dungeons and see if it feels right. There is one thing we didnt really mention, but say when you get the gold medal, your gear would get nerfed so you can run it again. We havent really finalised this to be honest.

Two raids on the same tier gives players choice in progression. Single raids make it hard to get to the end and make progress. Will you add raids that have multiple paths to get to the last boss?
This is something we are talking about, especially with Raid Finder. It breaks up Dragon Soul in 4.3 into two parts, giving you the big reward for beating either part. This might be something we can do if we figure out the logistics in the future.

Last years BlizzCon and during cata you hinted at an Abyssal Maw raid, what happened to it?
We do not have any plans to release the Abyssal Maw raid, it was going to fit in the end of this year. The story line we were telling didnt fit with the patch cycle. It just ended up not fitting. The concept was as far as we got on it. From the story perspective we have moved on so we probably wont use it again.

For the new dungeon challenges, how are you going to handle lower stats like hit. Will it put you below your hit cap?
Good point, there are lots of details like that to work out. We have Top Men working on this. Top Men.

In Ulduar and Icecrown you could get the Mimiron's Head or Invincible for completing the hard modes, but in Firelands you gave the Fire hawk mounts to people completing normal mode as well. And it's a bummer to see people who don't deserve it running around with the awesome mounts.
In normal mode you had a small chance to get them, and in Heroic mode you had a 100% drop rate, you were rewarded more. That's part of the reason why we will separate the Raid finder difficulty now, mounts will only come from Normal and Heroic modes since the Raid Finder is an intro to raiding. All the prestige items will stay in normal and heroic mode.\

Press Kit Screenshots

Press Kit Concept Arts