Blizzcon post 7 – WoW Dungeons & Raids

The DTV live stream is broadcasting the WoW D&R panel starting “soon”. This is the last panel that is going to feature new information about Cataclysm. The second class panel will likely be a recap of what happened yesterday, like it was last year. With all the new announcements they have talked about today, I’m really excited to see what the new raids & dungeons of the future will look like!

  • WoW Dungeons & Raids Panel starting now
  • Cory Stockton, Scot Mercer
  • 1:01 pm – Background: How do we do it? How do we script them & get them to you?
  • Preview of new content at the end.
  • An Epic Idea: Where is it? Who lives there? What will the players do?
  • Layout – 2D creation on paper. Figure out player flow & how they work through the dungeon (choice or a straight path & story experience?). Points of interest?
  • Example of Grim Batol dungeon layout
  • Icecrown citadel – Four levels in Icecrown raid dungeon.
  • Halls of Origination – One of 2 Uldum dungeons (non-linear progression). Elevator activated to get up to 3rd floor. 7 bosses in that dungeon.
  • Block it out in 3d. Work on scale, so you don’t have to run super far.
  • add things like teleporters – will show up again in Icecrown Citadel
  • Think about doors & elevators – Destructible objects? (ie. the floor falling out from under you). Work closely with art team.
  • Get concept art that add a lot of flavor to the dungeon (things like the Utgarde Keep first area).
  • “if we can do vehicles on vehicles, we can do Voltron – and that turned into mimiron”
  • What makes getting out of the fire different this time than it was every other time?
  • They’re showing us creature editing & other things.
  • “This is how we set up how much she (Onyxia) deep breaths”. Some of it is because there’s a range where it happens, and there are random things built in where sometimes she does it more and sometimes she does it less (based on luck).
  • Play testing – “There are 5 of us. We play it the first time before anyone sees it…” Then, it goes to QA that does more testing, and then they put everything on the PTR & listen to feedback. They love hearing on the PTR (Scott posts on forums under Daylo)

Cataclysm –

  • Want 4 full raids ready to go at ship. Six dungeons with multiple wings. Revamping old-world dungeons.
  • Pulled down to elemental plain of water for the Abyssal Maw 5-player dungeons located in Vash’jir. Will be conflict with Naga involvement with deathwing.
  • Dungeon is under water, where you can see water from the outside where creatures are swimming by outside. There are new water effects for the game.
  • Video preview of Abyssal Maw raid dungeon. It looks awesome.
  • Uldum – Halls of Origination. One of two 5-player dungeon in the lost deserts of Uldum. Similar to Halls of Stone & Halls of Lightning. Was built by titans, but it’s more of an Egyptian feel. Also non-linear.
  • Will interact with Brann Bronzebeard in Halls of Origination
  • Blackrock Caverns – Inside Blackrock Mountain. Wanted to create a new dungeon experience & expand the story with this (occupied by twilight’s hammer – is a supply line). Why are Twilight’s Hammer here & what do they want?
  • This will be a linear dungeon, but have a lot of cool spots. Old feel, but new things.

Sneak peaks:

  • Icecrown 10 & 25-player raid. 12 Epic Bosses (“we all get more sleep this way”).
  • Has waypoints. Sindragosa, Lich King fights.
  • Will race to the top of icecrown on an air ship. You’ll try to destroy the opposing faction’s ship. We’ll be fighting off people coming from the other ship & have to board their ship.
  • On the 3rd floor, there will be bosses in 3 wings. 4th floor just has the frozen throne & LK. When the floor falls off, you might die.
  • 3 seperate wings with 8 bosses in the 5-player dungeon when IC is released. Need to unlock the second & third wing using questline (but then can “farm” them in any order).
  • Cataclysm raids: Nefarion’s room: portal in the back… It’s another raid!
  • Will enter Blackwing Descent from flying up into Nefarion’s room. Nefarion is returning, but it’s a new dungeon inspired by BWL.
  • Fighting Ragnaros in the elemental plain of fire (Fight Ragnaros at his full strength). Sulfuron Keep
  • Onyxia 5th Anniversary – coming out some time around November. Get tier 2 helms with old art and new stats. Weapons updated. Even more deep breath randomization.
  • Onyxia brood mount (in “middle phase”) will be rare mount.
  • New loot to support all the specs, for all the loot, so people can have something that fits their spec. Filled out weapon table from MC loot, with massive upgrades.
  • Onyxia whelpling – anyone who logs into the game during the 5 year anniversary gets the Onyxian whelpling pet. It has some cool & unique animations (trying to deep breath).
  • Cross- Server LFG – 5 player dungeons
  • Battle group all joins the same 5-man dungeon PUG system. There will be a reward system for using this. If you flag yourself as a leader in the LFG, if you complete the dungeon, you get a reward. Likely coming in 3.3.0.

D&R Q&A –

  • Additional Instances can not be launched problem – Why not just have a queue system? -> The cross server LFG will actually help with this problem, too. It will have a form of summoning. Pulling players into dungeon from the various servers.
  • Don’t have plans to go back and re-do anything else.
  • Bringing back reputations in dungeons & raids? Plan to do that, but don’t have details
  • Some adjustments in encounters to have more caster mobs that make it harder to AOE, will have more focus on single-target and crowd control.
  • No plans to bring back AQ. With Nef & Rag – they are brand-new instances, and nothing from the old fights. Want things to feel like brand-new content
  • Tuning & hard-modes: Want things on normal-mode to be more accessible. Want hard modes to be beaten, always looking at feedback and seeing how people think about the encounter. Make small adjustments if things don’t feel right. Still want hard modes to be fun. “Hard modes are still a moving target.”
  • Attunement quests? They’re cool the first time, but not cool the second, third, or 4th time.
  • Lich King defeated – Going to have an epic feel. “It’s going to be awesome. There is no way you guys are going to be disappointed.”
  • QA didn’t defeat Yogg +0. Treat QA as not a top-notch guild. They still do bug testing for everything. “There is a huge spectrum of skill”. Want hard modes to still be a huge leap up from the normal modes.
  • Is Sarth getting lonely in wyrmrest temple? “Maybe, possibly.”

Panel is done for the day!

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