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Friday, October 21, 2011

Mists of Pandaria is the next WoW Expansion - Will Be Updated Through The Weekend Stay Tuned

World of Warcraft - Mists of Pandaria Preview Panel

This post is being updated constantly, check back regularly

Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
What is Mists of Pandaria?

The goal is to combine new gameplay with most fun parts of the past.
The plan is to get people back into the world, instead of having players roam around Stormwind and Orgrimmar all the time once they reach max level.
Developers want you to do what you want to do to progress your character. They really want you to feel like you have a menu of content where you can pick whatever you want to do, and you shouldn't feel forced to do something to progress your character. For example, daily quests will reward you with valor points but it will still be faster if you raid of course.
Character builds are going to be entirely revamped. Talents were still too cookie cutter, so the developers want to give players more choices in their talents.


5 New leveling zones to explore
Single, unified continent
Influenced by Asian landscapes
AH, Bank, and Central Questing Hub
No flying until max level
There's 5 leveling zones but they are very large zones, and you won't have your flying mount.

Lore of Pandaria

A long, storied history.
Magically hidden since The Sundering
A new land to explore....
Pandaria was discovered during the cataclysm, a naval battle between horde and alliance was taking place close to it.

Pandaren starting zone

It's a turtle! It left Pandaria 10 000 years ago and never came back. Pandarens who wanted to discover the world left on that turtle.
Story focused with simple mechanics
Cross faction, choose Horde/Alliance at level 10.

Creatures of Pandaria

The Jinyu are fish-like creatures and will be in a wide number of zones.
The Hozu are a monkey-like race, they stand up on their legs and can walk around. They play tons of pranks on the local pandarens and are also in a lot of zones.
Verming are ... new kobolds, they kinda look like evil bunnies.
Mantid: Whole raids and dungeons around this race. Insect race that has been there since the beginning of ages. They have been seperated by a giant wall. They are starting to go crazy and are going through the wall
Mogu: Ancient race, original race on pandaria. The mogu want the island back from the pandaren, they are really mad. You will see them in dungeons.
Sha: Manifestation of the evil energies that flow through the earth. If there is any sort of battle these guys pop up.

The Jade Forest

This is where Alliance and Horde will be landing. The horde is washing up on the north side, the alliance on the south side. There will be one unified start zone and Alliance/Horde will end up meeting up in the middle.
Lush rainforests and stone spires
The Alliance will try to become friend with the Hozu, and the Horde with the Jinyu and will try to turn them against each other.
Temple of the Jade Serpent will be the dungeon of this zone. It will be your 85-86 Dungeon, it has been taken over by Sha

Valley of the Four Winds

Two zones for the price of one! This zone is huge, the whole north side of the zone is pandaren farmlands, the south is a coastal jungle.
You will get to choose between the north side and the south side when you arrive. You can go back and switch side if you want the other quests.
The dungeon of this zone is Stormstout Brewery.
This is where you will have your first interaction with the Mantids, they broke through the wall and are now attacking pandarens villages.
This is a level 86-87 zone

New Features

The pandarens are the new race.
The female model isn't done yet.
At level 10, you will get to choose between horde and alliance.
Pandaren Classes: Hunter, Mage, Monk, Priest, Rogue, Shaman, Warrior
Racial - Epicurean - Increase the stat benefits from food by 100%
Racial - Gourmand - Cooking skill increased by 15.
Racial - Inner Peace - Your rested experience bonus lasts twice as long.
Racial - Bouncy - You take 50% less falling damage.
Racial - Quaking Palm - You touch a secret pressure point on an enemy target, putting it to sleep for 3 sec.

Monk New Class

Brewmaster - Tank spec
Mistweaver - Healer, a healer who can stand up in melee and will let players experience a "new healing style"
Windwalker - Melee DPS
This is not a hero class, and it will start at level 1
The class is very martial-arts based
Lots of monk-only animations, the healer and tanks will have different stances they can stand in, etc ...
Monk Races - All of them except Goblin and Worgens

Monk Equipment

Leather Armor (Agility or Intellect)
They hit a lot with hands and feet
They will need weapons for some finishers: Staves, Fist Weapons
They will also be able to use 1H Axe and maces, swords
Healers will get off-hands, they don't want healers to use shields.

Monk Resources

Chi (energy) slowly regenerates and is only used for your Jab and Roll abilities.
Jab generates Light and Dark force, which are used for everything else. Some finishing move uses dark force, some use the light force.
No auto attack! Devs want you to have this street fighter feel where you punch a lot

Cataclysm Talents

Pro - The level 10 specs were really nice and gave you a role early in the game, definitely a keeper.
Pro - Removing junk from the talent trees was also a very good move.
Pro - Having some kind of choices for optional skills/subspecs worked out pretty well.
Con - You had a risk of "skipping" important talents
Con - There wasn't enough junk removed
Con - There wasn't enough choices, you might have a different final talent point than another combat rogue but it just wasn't enough. The cookie cutter build still persists.
Con - No enough customization, no true hybridization (Using a little bit of 2 different trees)
Con - Players got grumpy

Talent System 2.0

The talent system is gone! Ok, not really, but it's greatly changed.
You now have your class abilities, your spec abilities, and your talents.
You still choose your spec at level 10, and you get a spec ability at level 10. You will get additional spec abilities later. There are anything that you really need to function, they will just be given to you to make sure you have all the tools you need to have.

Example - Prot Paladin

LVL 10 - Avenger's Shield
LVL 20 - Hammer of the Righteous (Prot and Ret)
LVL 30 - Judgement of the Just (Passive)


There is not talent points or ranks.
There is one talent pree per class.
You earn talents every 15 levels.
You get to choose 1 out of 3 every time you get a new point, you can only pick one of them and can't go back to get the other ones.
There will be no mandatory talent. There won't be any cookie cutter build or anything, it will depend on what kind of optional ability you want.
You can now change talents as easily as you change glyphs.
More info in the Talent Tree Panel at 2:15

PvE Scenarios

PvE Scenarios are a way to give new interesting content that doesn't make sense in a dungeon content.
Scenarios are more about reusing parts of the world in interesting new ways, and introducing new types of PvE gameplay that we've never seen before like PvE battlegrounds.
They are short instances for a few players, the amount of players can vary depending on the scenario, some of them can be for 3 players.
You don't need the typical tank/heal/dps setup, you will just be able to enter and play your role no matter what it is.
It will be a staged experience where you will try to accomplish some greater goal
For example, a scenario might require you to kill 25 kobolds in stage 1, then find and return 4 goldshire children, and then kill the boss.
Developers would like to do PvE battlegrounds, where you will have to slay 50 alliance/horde soldiers, destroy 6 towers and the barracks, and then defeat the enemy General.
They could replace group quests.
It uses the same queue system as the dungeon finder
Since there is no role requirements, queues should be instant.

Challenge Mode Dungeons

Complete a dungeon in x minutes
To earn Bronze, Silver, Gold medals.
Gear levels are normalized, all your gear will be brought to the same level to make the competition even.
You can't just get better gear to overpower it.
It will reward sweet looking gear with no stats, and valor points!
Challenge Mode will reward you with very unique looking gear to show off how awesome you are to your friends
A new challenge dungeons UI will be added, you will be able to check your medals, your ranking, show what rewards you can unlock, etc ....

Pet Battle System

You will be able to collect, level, and battle with companion pets.
It will be accessible to all players.
Works with almost every pet
Pet Customization, you will be able to name your pet, give them visual abilities, etc ...
There will be "Wild pets", you can find them in the world and engage in battle with them. You will then be able to get that pet and add it to your Pet Journal.
Pets have random stats, some of them will be very good at tanking, some will have a CC ability, etc ...
Some pets will only be found during a specific season, while it's raining, or during the day or the night. Some of them will only spawn in the spring, when it's raining, in elwynn forest at night!
Most pets will become tradable, even after it's leveled, etc ...
Pets will be account wide
Your pet journal will display info on all your pets, including stats, skills, and also drop locations and lore info for the pets you don't have yet!
Winning battles earns you experience, and levels your pets.
You will learn new abilities. Every pet can use 3 abilities in a battle at one time.
Every time you level you will also increase the stats of your pet.
You will level multiple pets to build your team.
You have 3 battle slots, one for each pet in your team.

Pet Battle System - Battle

PvE and PvP Battles
It will be turn based.
A simple combat system.
Fight with a team of 3 pets
Queuing system, you will be able to find a fight pretty fast depending on the level of your pets.

Pet Battle System - Customization

You will finally be able to name your pets, and see that name in battle.
Items for your pets, you will have an item slot for your pet and might be able to socket gems in those items, etc ...
Individual builds of abilities and different teams.
Masters and Masters abilities, there will be different NPC pet masters in the world who will let you earn abilities when you beat them. For example, beating the master of mechanical pets will get you a new ability for your pet!


9 new dungeons in the new expansion
6 dungeons will be on Pandaria
Scholomance and Scarlet Monastery (Wings 1 and 2) will be back in Heroic Mode

3 new Epic raids!

They will feature two enemy races, the Mogu and the Mantid.
Raid Finder, Normal, and Heroic difficulties will be available for all raids from day 1.
World raid bosses will return!
More info will be available at the Raids & Dungeons Panel today.


Increased focus on max level content, it will reward you with Valor Points.
Incentives for dungeons/raiders to run quests and do outdoor/daily kind of stuff. For example finishing a quest might give you a buff for the day, and maybe that buff will let you roll on a loot that only appears to people with that buff.
More quest choices, and a lot less linear
No flying until max level, it's much easier to keep people on the ground and create interesting quests when you know people won't just fly away and drop on the boss.
Faction improvements, there will be group of factions and they will let you work for all factions from that group to get your rewards. This way you don't have to grind a single faction anymore.

New Battlegrounds (Not final yet)

Stranglethorn Diamond Mines - Payload style gameplay.
Valley of Power - Murderball
Azshara Crater - DOTA
New Arena - Tol'vir Proving Grounds

STV Diamond Mine

Goblin Mine below northern STV
Payload style gameplay
Escort mine cars to depot
Multiple tracks, you will get a lot of options and you will be able to decide which way you want the cart to go.
First to x resources wins

Valley of Power

Located in the Vale of Eternal Blossoms
Murderball style gameplay
Holding the object earns points
Multiple point zones, depending on where you're hiding you will earn more/less points
Object deals damage to holder
Damage increases over time.

Tol'vir Proving Grounds - Arena

Located in Uldum
Simple layout based on Nagrand arena
Sense of place in the world
Just a simple square with 4 pillars/statues, etc ...


Allow achievements to be shared among all characters on the same account, things such as the raid achievements and the ones which are difficult to get.
Allows to include new achievements such as "get all the professions to the maximum level"

Major Class Changes

Devs like the way Resilience works in PvP, and how it gives a nice goal for players looking to progress/upgrade their gear in PvP
Resilience is a pretty huge barrier for people who want to start PvPing.
Resilience will become a base stat, and will increase a little every time you level.

Ranged Weapons

Hunter minimum range is gone!
Hunter melee weapon is gone!
Ranged slot for all other characters are gone.
Relics are gone.
Rogues and warriors can now throw their melee weapon
Wands become main hand weapons


Unique resource for each spec.
Affliction will keep Soul Shards, they are currently not interesting enough but devs have cool ideas for them.
Demonology will get Demonic Fury, you build up Demonic Fury and you metamorphosize when you max your Demonic Fury. More skills will be added to Demon Form, etc ...
Destruction will get Infernal Embers. The destruction warlock who keeps getting casting fire spells get hotter and hotter and will eventually deal insane amount of damage, you can build it up pretty quickly and unleash your big spell.


Buff totems are gone. It just wasn't very interesting to be the buff bitch of the group.
All totems are now utility
New totem examples:
Earthgrab totem - roots
Repulsion totem - repels
Bulwark Totem - absorbs


They always felt like they had 4 specs, so now they do.
Feral - Cat (melee dps)
Guardian - bear (tanking)
Some overlap between the two
All druids can still go cat or bear form.

All classes

Spell books cleaned up, got rid of more junk, the goal is to clean up action bars a little more without removing the fun things.
Rotations will be improved
Spells will be automatically learned, you won't have to go to your trainer anymore.
You will get a new spell at level 87, level 90 new talent point.
Talent trees should be fun, and you should have more choice than just a cookie cutter build.

World of Warcraft Class Talent System

World of Warcraft Game Director Tom Chilton, and Lead Systems Designer Greg Street took to the stage this morning to discuss the direction of class balance for World of Warcraft, as well as the new talent system coming in Mists of Pandaria. Their panel focused on the philosophies and goals of this new system, what’s changing, and what expectations players should have as they level up in Pandaria and beyond.

Philosophies and Goals
In Cataclysm, we made some pretty radical adjustments to the talent trees. Some of those changes worked out really well, while others didn't really help us achieve the goals we set out to reach. We really liked offering players a choice of class specialization at level 10, for example, and how streamlining each of the talent trees made room for meaningful choices and greater character customization. We didn't like that there was still a lot of "bulk" left in the talent trees despite our clean-up efforts, though, and that it remained possible for players to "miss" really important performance talents. Looking back, we feel that the Cataclysm talent trees are roughly 80% composed of class role-defining talents that are crucial to rotations and performance, while the other 20% are interesting utility talents, and that's where the real choices were happening.
For Mists of Pandaria, we want to move toward something that feels more flexible, yet eliminates many of the flaws of the old system at the same time. More importantly, we want players to gain access to important class performance abilities easily while ensuring that the more engaging utility abilities, where all the choices a player makes are meaningful, are front and center. Getting there will take some major changes.

The New Class Talent System
Perhaps the most exciting of these changes is the removal of the old talent tree system. Rather than each class having three separate trees, one for each specialization, players will now choose talents from individual sets which are awarded every 15 levels. Each class will have its own selection of talents, and the entire list will be available to all characters of that class regardless of  specialization.
Each talent set is comprised of three talents which fall into a clear "theme." Some sets will offer utility such as movement speed increases and boosts to survivability, while others will reduce the costs of certain situational abilities. Currently, the goal is to avoid making any particular talent mandatory or to have them play a role in ability rotations directly. Instead, they're intended to give players interesting ways to customize their characters according to their preferred playstyle.
In total, there will be six talent sets, with players unlocking a new set every 15 levels. This means that there will be fewer talents overall, but each talent you choose has the potential to have a much more dramatic effect on your gameplay.

Examples of possible talents for paladins in Mists of Pandaria

Another big change being made is how talents are selected. Instead of "purchasing" talents with a predetermined number of points (earned as you level), talent selection will be toggle-based. For each set of three talents players unlock, they will get to choose one talent to activate, for a total of six active talents at level 90. (Talent ranks have been completely removed.)
Similar to current functionality, talents selections will be finalized by clicking "Learn" at the bottom of the talent pane; however, a big benefit of removing talent points is that it allows us to let players "re-talent" with more flexibility. Even after players have activated their talents, they won't be completely locked into their choices as they are now. If at any point a player feels that another talent may be more appropriate or fun, he or she can simply select that talent from their tree and click "Learn" again. This can be done on a talent-by-talent basis or, if the situation demands it, all talents can be changed out at once.
As a result, talents can be changed out when switching specs, as well as when running dungeons, raids, and battlegrounds. While re-talenting will most likely be disabled during combat and will incur a small fee (either in the form of gold or a reagent), it will still give players more opportunities to adapt their characters to better meet the challenges they expect to face while playing.

Examples of possible talents for rogues in Mists of Pandaria

Class Talents vs. Specialization Abilities
So what does this mean for important spec-based spells and abilities like Hammer of the Righteous and Circle of Healing?
At level 10, players will still select a specialization and unlock an iconic class specialization ability. As players level up, they will then automatically learn both class-based and specialization-specific abilities at set intervals. The specialization abilities you learn will be largely comprised of old talents we feel players should have, as well as core class abilities that not every spec needs.
For example, for a level 25 Protection paladin, his or her training list may look a little something like this:

Level 10: Avenger's Shield (Protection ability)
Judgments of the Wise (Protection ability)
Level 12: Rightous Fury (Class ability)
Level 13: Redemption (Class ability)
Level 14: Flash of Light (Class ability)
Level 15: Hand of Reckoning (Class ability)
Level 16: Lay on Hands (Class ability)
Level 18: Divine Shield (Class ability)
Level 20: Hammer of the Righteous (Protection ability)
Level 22: Supplication (Class ability)
Level 24: Consecration (Class ability)

These spells and abilities will be trained in the field, appearing immediately in players' spellbooks once they reach the appropriate level. As a result, there will no longer be a need to visit class trainers save to re-spec or purchase Dual Specialization, keeping players engaged and doing what they enjoy.
With this new method of distributing abilities, we can ensure that players are receiving role-defining talents at levels that make sense and will benefit them the most as well as deliver fun and meaningful choices along the way.


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