Archive for the ‘Blizzard’ Category

Quickie

Thursday, January 4th, 2007

burning crusadeWell, it looks like Burning Crusade will be out on the 15th of this month. I’ve heard that you should max out your skills before you hit the expansion. They also suggest that you stock up on snacks, frozen dinners, and maybe a bedpan.

I heard one beta tester say, don’t hit auto-run and then take your eyes off the screen. It seems there are gapping holes that will drop you in to an abyss. My question(s): how long do you fall, before the game decides that you are dead? How do you get your corpse?

Happy New Year!

Movie time: check out the BC intro

Thursday, December 14th, 2006

Picture 18.png

Blizzard has released the video into for the Burning Crusade – it’s pretty cool. Check it out.

What do you think of Patch 2.0.1?

Wednesday, December 6th, 2006

Eillebill
I only had about 40 minutes to mess with it, so I concentrated on my level 39 druid. I was surprised to see that I had 30 talent points to use, which would put me just shy of any really cool talents like Moonkin form. I put most of the points into the Balance tree.

The new talents bumped up my damage from thorns and entangle, which was nice. Lunar Guidance (when maxed) increased my spell damage and healing by 35% of my Intelligence (which was nice).

My Sense is that they tried to make each talent tree more distinct with less cross over. I’m a little disappointed since the Restoration talent tree pretty much locks you into being a healer for a raid – not recommended for solo play.

Other patch notes:
When I fired up the game, I was standing in the Badlands. I shouldn’t have been surprised to see that two of my abilities were missing from the button bar. When they reset my talents, they deleted my talent based spells. That’s money down the drain (sigh).

Oddly, the game felt like it ran a little faster on my old G4 PowerBook. This may be due to the fact that the patch killed all my addons. As soon as I compile a list of compatible addons, that I like, I’ll post links.

One final note: Blizzards web jockeys have the wrong talent tree calculator on the main site. Here is a link to the current one.

Just grabbed World of Warcraft Test Patch 2.0.1

Wednesday, November 15th, 2006

Picture 1.pngJust stumbled on to the test patch 2.0.1: I doubt i will be able to get into the test server, but I did grab a huge install note doc to share with you. I presume that this is what everyone will get once the expansion ships.

Hi-lights include:
1. Everyone get’s to respec their talents for free.
2. Heal over time spells can now stack from multiple casters (sounds like raids will get tougher)
3. Professions get a let up on making cools stuff.
4. Autoloot is finally a feature.

Here’s the goods:

World of Warcraft Test Patch 2.0.1
The latest patch notes can always be found at http://www.worldofwarcraft.com/info/underdev/
General
• All players will have talent points reimbursed and will have access to new talents throughout their trees; this includes the 41-point talents. Several new abilities have also been added for all classes.
• All pets now receive a percentage of their master’s armor, spell damage, spell resistances, attack power, and stamina.
• Low-level spells cast by high-level players will receive smaller bonuses from +healing and +spell damage.
• HoTs, DoTs, and channeled spells have been re balanced to receive a more appropriate (higher) percentage of +spell damage and +healing.
• HoTs from different sources will now stack (i.e. multiple druids can cast the Rejuvenation spell on 1 target).
• New item property “Resilience” has been introduced. Resilience reduces your chance to be the victim of a critical strike, and reduces the amount of damage critical strikes do to you.
• Weapon Skill now does the following:
• Weapon skill will no longer reduce the percentage damage lost due to glancing.
• The player will gain 0.1% to their critical strike rating per weapon skill against monsters above their level.
• When casting a buff on a low level target, the appropriate rank of the buff will be automatically be applied.
• Crowd Control effects in PvP will last no longer than 12 seconds instead of the full duration, with a chance of a heartbeat resist.
• Players will no longer lose faction when under the influence of “Mind Control” or the Gnomish Mind Control Cap.
PvP
• Honor System Revamp
• Current honor totals have been reset.
• Players may display their highest lifetime rank title (accessible from character sheet).
• Honor points earned each day may now be spent as a form of currency. Check the PvP tab of your character sheet to see your honor information.
• PvP rewards are no longer unique.
• Marks of Honor earned from battlegrounds are no longer turned in for reputation or honor. They are now used in addition to honor points in order to purchase rewards.
• Two New Arenas are now available in three different modes.
• 2v2, 3v3, and 5v5 matches
• Players may queue up at Goblin NPC’s in Stormwind, Ironforge, Orgrimmar, Undercity, and Gadgetzan
Druids
• The talent “Swiftmend” will now include bonus healing from the talents “Improved Rejuvenation” and “Empowered Rejuvenation”.
Hunters
• Traps can be set while in combat, but require a 2 second arming time.
• Auto shot will be automatically enabled if the Hunter steps out of melee range while in combat with target.
• 1 agility will now grant 1 ranged attack power.
• Auto shot is now reset when casting Aimed Shot.
Shaman
• Shaman with the appropriate talent spec are now able to dual-wield. Both main and off-hand weapons can be affected by self-weapon buffs such as Windfury.
• Rockbiter’s weapon functionality has been changed. It is now a damage proc instead of a flat attack power bonus.
• Windfury Weapon and Rockbiter Weapon enchantments will only benefit the weapon with the enchantment on it.
Warlocks
• Range of “Drain Life” and “Drain Mana” spells have been increased.
Warriors
• Rage generation from dealing damage has been normalized.
• All Rage awards are averaged with our expected rage per swing (adjusted for weapon speed).
Items
• The “Far Sight” effect has changed so that the camera now zooms in to a distant location, rather than instantly showing the distant view. This also affects the items: Ultra-Spectropic Vision Goggles, the Ornate Spyglass, and the Hunter ability “Eagle Eye.”
• Spells can now require either a totem item or a totem category item to cast a spell. This means that the Enchanting Rods now count as all of the lower level enchanting rods as well, so you only need a single enchanting rod instead of all six. This also means that “Finkel’s Skinner” now counts as a Skinning Knife. Several weapons that are picks have been flagged as counting as a Mining pick as well.
• Items that give bonuses, such as + to crit, have been modified to adhere to a combat rating system.
• All current items will provide the exact same benefit from ratings at level 60 as they provided before the ratings system.
• Thrown weapon items no longer stack, but use durability instead. One unit of durability is lost per throw, and these items can be repaired.
• The tool tip for the Great Staff of the Guardian now shows the proper increase of 28 to the party spell critical rating.
• Items that are useable from player inventory with a cooldown will now update the cooldown in real-time.
• Players will no longer be able to sell the “Blue Skeletal Horse” to vendors.
• The damage Proc from the item “Misplaced Servo Arm” will no longer break the Rogue ability “Gouge”.
• The “Skull of Impending Doom” has been changed and will now increase run speed by 60% for 10 seconds, but deals damage equal to 60% of your maximum health and drains 60% of your maximum mana for over 10 seconds.
• The Backfire effect on the “Net-O-Matic” will no longer break on damage.
Professions
• All of the profession-made items that have been created up to now have been given proper stats based on the current expansion item level progression table.
• Most of the items made by Tailoring/Leatherworking/Blacksmithing have had their creation time reduced. Now the cap on time required to make an item in those professions is based on quality and level.
• New Max times required.
• Level 31+ Green Items at least 8 sec
• Level 31+ Blue Items at least 15 sec
• Level 31+ Purple Items at least 25 sec
• Skill level now determines what items you can disenchant.
• Skill 1= Level 1-20
• Skill 25= Level 20-25
• Skill 50= Level 25-30
• Skill 75= Level 30-35
• Skill 100= Level 35-40
• Skill 125= Level 40-45
• Skill 150= Level 45-50
• Skill 175= Level 50-55
• Skill 200= Level 55-60
• Skill 225= Level 60-65
• Players will no longer lose an item when attempting to disenchant on a boat when the loading screen appears.
User Interface
• Meeting Stone gossip options have been removed from Innkeepers in preparation for the new LFG system.
• LFG/LFM UI
• Tips have been added to Loading Screen tips and new player tips
• Meeting Stones now function similar to a Warlock Summon spell.
• Player’s select party member to be summoned and right click the stone.
• A second party member then clicks the portal to summon.
• Enchanting UI has been vastly improved.
• Raid UI now supports frame for Main Tank.
• Spell Alert (Enemy Cast bar)
• Defaults to off
• Enabled through Interface Options
• Displays targeted enemy’s cast bar when they are casting.
• May also be displayed with “V” key functionality.
• Auto-loot may be enabled with just one click in the Interface Options.
• Character sheet UI now displays more precise melee, ranged, and spell stats.
• Players can now cast item targetable spells on items that are in your action bar. For instance you can cast feed pet and have the food you want the pet to be fed in one of your action bars.
• Semi-charged items can no longer be placed in the Auction House.
• A knowledge base has been added to the in-game UI.
• Searchable database of FAQ’s and common support issues.
• Keyrings have been expanded to hold more key-type items and will now size dynamically for the number of keys in possession.
• The Hunter ability “Mend Pet” will now turn red when a pet is out of range.
• Players will now be able to disable ability messages in the floating combat text.
• Players will now be able to scroll down their ignore list if it extends beyond one page.
• The tooltips for the Show Dispellable Debuffs and Show Castable Buffs options will now specify they only apply to raid pullout groups.
• Significant changes have been made to User Interface customization. For specific details, please visit http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/thread.html?topicId=36975623&sid=1 .
Bugs
• The Rend Blackhand arena event in Upper Blackrock Spire will now properly reset after a wipe.
• Players will no longer resurrect with low mana and health if they died and released on a Zeppelin or Ship.
• Fixed an issue where effects with 100% chance to be applied were being resisted.
• Fixed an issue where high level players were not being properly credited the right amount of faction reputation.
• Party members will now be properly credited for completing the “Dead Man’s Plea” quest when a totem or pet gets the killing blow on Baron Rivendare.
• Slowing abilities and spells will no longer decrease the speed of a player when traveling by Gryphon.
• Fixed an issue where players were re-taining talent based abilities even after re-training.
• Fixed an issue where the Warlock spell “Shadowburn” was improperly consuming two Soul Shards.
• Fixed an issue where players were unable to click on anything if they had any add-ons installed.
• Fixed an issue where players were able to use “Mana Burn” on mobs and players without mana.
• Fixed an issue where spells that proc while a player was standing would not proc if they were sitting or lying down.
• Fixed many interface overlapping graphic issues.
• Fixed an issue where Seal of Justice (Rank 2) will now refresh with melee strikes.
• Blood Elf mobs in Azshara will now have the correct model.
• Fixed an issue where a spell with two procs would be reflected and one of the procs would still hit the player that reflected the spell.
• Fixed an issue that was putting Hunters back into combat when they have the “Spirit Bond” Talent or have the Cryptstalker set bonus.
• Fixed an issue where players were being awarded the wrong item when double looting a corpse under the master loot option.
• Fixed an issue where players interrupted while casting would have a longer cast time than normal.
• Fixed an issue where players could not see enchants when inspecting another player.
• Fixed an issue where extra attacks from “Windfury Weapon” would not proc “Flurry” when they crit.
• Fixed an issue where players that were killed in freezing traps would be stuck there until releasing.
• Fixed an issue where Warlocks were able to despawn a pet to gain a free “Soul Shard”in the Battlegrounds.
• Warrior “Shield Slam” and “Shield Bash” will no longer trigger a proc from an equipped weapon.
• Fixed an issue where players were able to consume a Mana Emerald at full mana.
• The totem, “Wrath of Air,” will no longer be useable in “Ghost Wolf” form.
• Fixed an issue where Warrior “Battle Shout” was causing too much threat.
• Fixed an issue where computers with ATi video cards were sometimes having problems when displaying a certain texture.
• Fixed an issue where the Warlock spell “Death Coil” gained double the benefit from the talent “Shadow Mastery”.
• Player pets will no longer attack CC’ed targets while in Passive mode.
• “Prayer of Spirit” will no longer cast on the user if there is no other target selected.
• “Lightning Shield” will now have the appropriate cool-down time between uses.
• Fixed an issue where materials were being consumed if a player logged out before an enchantment had finished being applied.
• The Hunter, “Auto Shot,” ability will no longer activate on resurrection.
• Fixed a bug where “Inner Focus” was not being consumed when using “Mind Soothe.”
• Fixed a bug where Rogues were able to use the ability “Ghostly Strike” when not facing their target.
• Warlock pet dismiss sounds will now play properly.
• Fixed an issue where Fist weapons were sheathing improperly.
• Bags will no longer overlap the Bank UI when the game window is resized.
• Players will no longer be able to whisper to enemy players in Battlegrounds.
• The Skeletal Gryphon ride for the Eastern Plaguelands PvP event will now fly at its correct speed.
• Players will no longer be able to whisper to enemy players in Battlegrounds.
• Players will no longer be able to jump onto the top of the Dun Baldur Fortress in Alterac Valley and get behind the terrain to attack other players.
• Shapeshifting will now break “Nogginfogger Elixir” effect.
• You will no longer die when Feign Death is finished channeling.
• “Scatter Shot” will now properly do damage even if the target is immune to the confuse effect.
• “Aspect of the Cheetah” will now properly trigger with absorbed damage.
• Casting a lower rank polymorph on a target that is already under the effect of a higher rank will cause an error message and not consume mana.
• The talent, “Master of Elements,” will now properly proc off of totems.
• Players will no longer be attacked by same faction guards when using mind control on an enemy player to attack.
• “Vanish” will now properly un-target the Rogue from the attacker when the attacker is in the same party.
• The talent, “Improved Chain Heal,” will now properly add to the base healing done.
• “Healing Wave” Ranks 11 and 12 will now benefit from the Shaman talent, “Healing Way.”
• “Improved Curse of Agony” will now properly increase the base and spell power.
• Warlocks will now be properly credited a Soul Shard from their pet when they take a flight path.
• Warlocks will now be properly credited a Soul Shard from their pet when they are dead at the end of a Battleground match.
• Warlocks will now be properly credited a Soul Shard from their pet when they enter an Arena.
• Casting “Dark Pact” after exiting combat will no longer put you back in combat.
• The tool tip for the “Great Staff of the Guardian” now shows the proper increase of 28 to the party spell critical rating.
• Several Chest spawns in Dustwallow Marsh will now properly spawn above ground.
• Items that can give +Stamina/Intellect from random suffixes will now properly apply while dead.
• “Beastmaster’s Gloves” will now give the proper 2% crit chance for Hunter pets.
• Various graphical errors will be noticeable while viewing maps.

Slate calls WOW Lame

Wednesday, November 15th, 2006

16965472.pngI’m pretty tired of people who whine about things and then put their hands on their hips and stroll off acting like their work is done.

Well Chris Dahlen at Slate has written a decent article about the grind of World of Warcraft. He makes some very good points about how limited the variety of quests are. Kill this. Get that. Blah blah blah. He also points out that you don’t get a strong sense of being part of a story.

Mr. Dahlen wants to see the world evolve. He wants cities to rise and fall. He wants to see more events like the gates of Silthilus. He wants player profiles like MySpace. He wants people to be able to own land like in Second Life.

All this sounds fantastic, but in terms of development its really World of Warcraft 2.0. If you think about it this is quite a compliment to Blizzard. They made a game that was so compelling that people are asking for features that have never been well implemented in MMORG’s. While I would like to see many of these features, I would be happy to get more quest variety and to fly around some of Azeroth on a flying mount.

Kurn

Under the radar: the official Warcraft Encyclopedia

Friday, November 10th, 2006

Blizzard Encyclopedia

The nice people at Blizzard have started posting articles to their official Warcraft Encyclopedia.  The main link is located at the top of the ‘Workshop’  section of the main WOW community site.

While it far from complete and lacks much of the depth found in the wowwiki, it is the official source and it has some noteworthy features. The official encyclopedia takes a very dry authoritative tone and focuses on rather abstract concepts such as immortals and demigods (with liberal doses of Burning Crusade references).

Speculation: It seems that either Blizzards creative writers want to flesh out their back-story for the upcoming expansion, or they have nothing to do right now (seems unlikely) and they are emptying all their notebooks onto the website (also seems unlikely).

The “Picard Maneuver” for rogues

Tuesday, November 7th, 2006

Now this is how you treat a rogues.

Fan art by
Something in the title of this tactic really amuses my inner geek. Never watched Star Trek: The Next Generation? Well, I’ll enlighten you — the Picard Maneuver was a technique that involved moving a ship at extremely high speeds in order to appear to be in two places at once. And Gweedo (a rogue after my own heart) has put in long hours perfecting a similar technique for rogues to use when attempting to pull annoying caster mobs that don’t like moving (because they can cast!) and might have friends (so we can’t run in and ambush them). Gweedo breaks the strategy down into three/four simple steps

  • Step 1: Take your gun, bow, throwing knife, dynamite, whatever… make sure nothing is behind you, and get the mob’s attention. One at a time, please. [Elizabeth's note: I assume he means to do this from maximum range]
  • Step 2: Immediately begin backing up. If it’s a caster mob, the first thing it will try and do is cast. If you’re fast enough backing up you will be out of casting range before their spell is finished casting and this will force them to abort this line-of-attack and give chase.
  • Step 3: As they move forward watch where they are, and when they are out of range of the rest of their friends, hit Sprint immediately. This should get you back into melee range before the mob has a chance to get a shot off. This would be an excellent time for the ‘ole Gouge/Backstab combination.
  • Optional Step 4: If you’re crafty and can get a kidney punch in fast enough they won’t have a chance to get a shot off. Most casters are stupid. They won’t resort to melee or hand-to-hand unless they’re out of mana.

[Fan art by Astrid Hansen]

(Via WOW Insider.)

New Classes -Not!

Monday, November 6th, 2006

BC.jpgRelmstein has a post about new classes they would like to see. While the descriptions are interesting (pirates, ninjas, and monks), the classes lack the finesse that Blizzard strives for.

Think about it. Blizzard spent nearly a year cleaning up their talents and spells for each existing class. When they where evaluating new features for Burning Crusade, Blizzard stated that they would not add any classes because they felt it would be too difficult to develop.

So as my favorite detective says, “here’s the thing:” After spending a year getting the classes ‘right,’ Blizzard has been making sweeping changes to all the classes to accommodate level 70 as a viable goal. I think this is the reason the BC has been delayed till January. Blizzard saw how much work it took to tweak the classes and now they want to aggressively test the new changes BEFORE wrecking havoc on all its players.

what do you think?

Kurn, where have you been?

Wednesday, November 1st, 2006

Kurn Sadly, I’ve been sick and I’ve had a ton of work to do. The fact that Burning Crusade has been postponed till January or something doesn’t help.

I’ve been leveling my new Druid. He’s lvl 37. According to the program I’ve logged like 4+ days playing him, so I guess he’s making good progress.

I’ve been exploring all the quests on the western continent. Most of the Desolace stuff, is straight forward with lots of grinding experience.

On Sunday, I took Kurn to the fishing derby and we rudely reminded that 2 o’clock means 2 0′clock. I may never get to try that. sigh.

1 final oddball note. I use Mac os 10.4.x and I’ve been playing with holding the control key down while moving the mouse scroll wheel. It’s a great little zoom feature. Try it.

BC pushed back? Of Course…

Thursday, October 26th, 2006

Pandarens use Moto Rzr??Sometimes, a picture says it all. Check this out at GU comics