Monthly Archives: August 2009

Blizzcon post 4 – WoW Class, Items, & Professions

Coming soon: My favorite blue poster on the forums (Greg Street, AKA ghostcrawler) should be present in full force for the WoW class panel. I’m really excited about possible druid announcements. I’ll be tracking & live blogging all through the class panel.  I am very excited! The panel will be starting “soon” (at 5 pm PST, which is 8 pm EST).

  • 5:00 PM pm PST: Ghostcrawler introduces WoW cataclysm class panel. “You may know me as that A-hole who nerfed your class”
  • Travis day & John Lecraft. also there
  • Goblin racial – rocket jump (jumps into air) & rocket barrage (does damage) (shared cooldown), 1% increase to attack & casting speed, Discount on things you buy, Call on your personal servant, allowing bank access every 30 min, Better living through chemistry: bonus achemy skills
  • Worgen racial – Darkflight (movement speed), Viciousness, Aberration – reduced curse & disease duration, skinning bonus (can use your claws to skin).
  • In combat Worgen form for all classes. Transform instant in combat. Out of combat – choose human or worgen.
  • Goblin – No paladin or druid.
  • Worgen – No paladins or shaman (have druid!)
  • New Race/class combinations confirmed again.

Classes

  • Warlocks – Soul shard Update. Banished from bags!
  • Warlocks No more soulshards in your bags. New UI, not in inventory. Only used in combat.
  • Three per fight. Regen quickly out of combat. Possible to get more for long fights or mistakes. Etc.
  • New Warlock spell – Soul Burn – Cost 1 shard, 30 sec cooldown, off GCD. Amplifies your next spell. Spells you use may behave differently when empowered. No other spell costs shards.
  • Hunters – Mana gone! Use focus instead.
  • Hunters No longer care about int or mana regen. “GC said hunters are dumb”
  • Hunter focus works like rogue energy. Stead shot comes back faster. Have 100 focus. Shots cost between 30 & 60 focus.
  • Hunters have Fewer cooldowns. No aspect of the viper. Amo becomes an item, not a consumable.

Itemization

  • 5:12 pm – Mana per 5 GONE. Replaced with spirit for everyone. Spirit is mana regen. All healers will get a meditation-like skill. No more spirit on mage & warlock gear (really!).
  • Spell power GONE. Based off Intellect.
  • Attack Power GONE. Based off Agility – Agility 2 AP for rogues, hunters, shaman & druids. No more plate-wearers stealing your gear.
  • Defense – GONE. No more juggling around defense “cap.” Tanks will receive anti-crit from talents (like feral druids),
  • Armor Penetration – GONE. Replaced with “mastery”. Makes you better at what you want to do (Mastery for all classes etc).
  • Haste – Push more buttons. Increases rate of energy, runes, rage, & focus.
  • Block  value goes away. Mitigates % of damage. Now a real mitigation stat.
  • More stamina for all! More Hit Points. No more HP envy & dieing on Thorim ’cause you aren’t a plate wearer.
  • Next Legendary out of Icecrown = Shadowmourne.

Professions

  • Archaeology – Secondary profession (like cooking). collect artifacts throughout the world.
  • Unlock paths of the titans. “It’s very cool!” Gives unique rewards (vanity pets, travel, titles, recepies for other professions).
  • Journal tracks artifacts that don’t go in your bags, they stay in your journal. Like a gathering skill.
  • Reforging – Customizing gear. Relatively cheap. Given to blacksmiths, leatherworkers, tailors, Jewelcrafters, & Engineers. Reduce one stat for more of another (some restrictions apply).
  • Multi-gains. Allows you to “make useful stuff”.
  • Gathering leveling-up will be smoother. Maybe a little more fun & exciting. More flexibility in perks.
  • 5:24 Engineering – More convenience, better utility items, toys, pets, gadgets.

Q&A

  • Racial bonus changes for older races (almost certainly).
  • Professions – Going up by another 75 points. Skill Rank Called Illustrious.
  • Worgen & Goblin DK’s? – Just more fun. May change later.
  • DPS Casters legendary weapon? – Not going to happen this expansion. Probably first in Cataclysm.
  • Mages leveling – Arcane or fire for leveling? Revisiting level at which you get abilities. Getting rid of RANKS for all abilities. They will scale with character level instead.
  • Changing talent trees quite a bit! Want to prune passive talents. Having to change warlock & hunter trees to accommodate big changes.
  • Elemental shaman – Possible totem changes in the future. Don’t want to just to to all instant-cast spells. Want to make longer cast times better in PvP. “When you are a turret, it should pay off better”
  • Reforging details – Still in the works.
  • Is Onyxia going to deep breath more? (Yes).
  • Gathering professions: Could we have 1 gathering & 2 crafting professions? Answer: No. They’re going to make gathering professions better (tracking 2 at the same time).
  • Druid: Dual spec a lot of fun. Can we go 3 or 4 specs? Answer: Still want talents to be a meaningful choice. Don’t want it to be too arbitrary.
  • Backpacks – Revamping level up experience. May look into that.
  • Warrior will stay largely unchanged. Want to simplify other class’ gear to look simplified more like warriors.
  • 5:36 – Mage raid utility? Looking into Scorch & other things.
  • Hunter Amo – Still working on the details.
  • Resto shaman – Specialization & niche? “To be really, really good at AOE healing.” Want to go further with it.
  • Blacksmithing Spell Plate? If it’s a viable leveling spec, maybe….
  • Hybrid caster gear & healing spec problems – Still a topic of conversation. Hard to heal in STR & hit gear. Haven’t found the magic solution.
  • Hit rating through talents – Something they would like to get rid of.
  • 5:44 – Durability mechanic not going away any time soon (“It’s good for the game).  Being able to repair armor – Engineering repair bots are enough. Reforging added to make crafting professions better.
  • Resto shaman & Resto druids – Magic dispel? Giving dispel magic to all healers, and then only one niche otherwise for dispels.
  • Shadow priest & haste – DOTs & cool downs make haste less interesting. May be improved in the future. Shadow priest may get a new direct damage spell not on a cool down.
  • Feral Druid DPS rotation – GC likes the cat rotation & how it plays. Hard to mess with at this point. They can make the default WoW UI better at handling things like combo points to reduce # of required mods.
  • Don’t want classes capable of healing to be able to apply Mortal Strike.
  • Talents that Improve buffs are gone (Improved Mark of the wild GONE)

That is all for today, guys! I’ll be around tomorrow doing mostly the same thing for what I can see using my Live Stream (which my brand new computer plays beautifully).

Posted in Blizzcon

Blizzcon post 3 – Troll & Worgen druids

The live stream schedule has the Diablo 3 & Starcraft 2 panels from Hall D, instead of the WoW art panel & The Guild panel that are in Hall C.  I’ll use this post to fill in announcements & tidbits of WoW-related stuff. Since this isn’t a Starcraft or Diablo blog, I won’t be posting as much info for the next few hours (though I’m not going anywhere!). I’ll do my best to make sure that I have full coverage of the Class, items, & professions panel at 5 pm PST.

It looks like there are Worgen druids and troll druids. NO Goblin druids. I’ll be working hard between now and when the expansion comes out to make sure that leveling the new troll races will come along with the same Druid leveling guide quality that I’ve had for the last few years! We’ll embrace our new druid races with open arms (right guys!). I’m not sure if I really like the idea of more druid races, but I’ll have a lot of fun leveling up new druids to try out the new content once things get rolling!

Diablo III – Heroes & Monsters panel

  • 2:00 pm PST – Diablo 3 panel showing on direct TV instead of the WoW art panel.
  • Discussing about the monk class. Holy magic, speed over toughness, combo moves.
  • 2:20 pm – Barbarian has powerful new whirlwind ability.

Other WoW news

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  • 3:05 pm PST: wow.com’s twitter account says: No plans for new character slots to fit all the new class combos on your server!

—–

  • 3:17 pm – Cory Stockton being interviewed by direct TV live stream.
  • Started working on Cataclysm before WotLK was finished.
  • “Cory – “wanted to go back to Azeroth… but give them something new” and “progress the story forward.” “Give them a really big bad-guy”
  • Cory: It (cataclysm) will effect everyone. Expansion will give you some things (level cap, races), but everyone who has the game now has something that will effect everyone. No one will be able to access the “old” content. The quest guys & the team are rebuilding everything from the ground up (some more than others).
  • Cory: “Wanted to get to the races this time. Hero classes effect raiding dungeons, & everything together. We want to continue the idea, but we thought going back to the classic world… we needed to give you new races…”.
  • Cory: Faction transfers have been in works for a while. Lets you play with friends on the other side, or experience the other side of content. You can choose from any race that is able to play that class (which means that you could choose worgen or goblin, probably? – not totally confirmed).
  • Cory: Using flying as a game play tool, where you may have to wait before you can fly.
  • Cory: 3 new abilities between 80 and 85. You’ll still get more content overall.
  • Cory: Wanted to give people new stuff even if you were rerolling.
  • Cory: Archeology a secondary profession & tie into the Path of the Titans (level 85 advancement & customization). Travel over Azeroth to find artifiacts & then it’s a mini-game to decipher it and you get rewards for it. Different profession plans, items, money, unlocking Glyph Slots that let you work through the path of the titans.

3:30 – Starcraft 2 & Battle.net development

  • History of battle.net: “It’s been a while since we talked about battle.net” First matchmaking service integrated in the game. Evolved a lot over the years.
  • Battle.net has more players than World of Warcraft.
  • Core values: Always connected experience – Battle.net in SC2 are going to have more of a unified experience. Will have battle.net accounts & persistent characters (if you go away for a while, you don’t lose your characters). “Always connected to news, content & friends.”
  • Want to have competitive arena play for everyone (beginners & advanced players alike)
  • Different “leagues” (bronze, silver, gold, and more!). Everyone has a chance to win their division & go to end of season tournaments,
  • Casual play options: Practice league (friendlier, slower for new players), co-op skirmish, random teams, challenges, & custom games.
  • Party system similar to WoW – has easy chat system & you go into teams together (2v2, 3v3, 4v4).
  • Custom games: easier to do. Can have private game lobby for your friends, and then you can publish it to the game list after your friends are in.
  • 3:54pm – Connecting the Blizzard Community – Keep informed about all the games you are involved with. When you go on SC2, you can still keep informed with what is going on in WoW. Want to be able to connect with friends online, offline, & in different games.
  • SC2 chat system more IM-type where it is easy to keep track of multiple conversations.

7:00 pm – Connecting the Blizzard Community

  • Playing with your RL friends, making RL friends in the game – “players want to play with the same group of people in future games”.
  • WoW chatting still has a lot of limitations – especially with different realms & factions & multiple characters.
  • Battlenet Real ID – See and communicate with friends based on how you know them. You can “talk to your friends cross-game and cross-realm.” Keep achievements across games & characters. Your friend network will stay intact for all future battle.net games.
  • Toast & Broadcast – Shows you when people come online. You can be in one game & can talk to people in other games (so if your WoW guild is in SC2, you can tell them when your WoW raid is starting).
  • 7:05pm New character friend’s list will work in all the games. You’ll have to accept friendships for battle.net Real ID. Will have privacy options & parental control options. Choose what info you want to share.
Posted in Blizzcon

Blizzcon post 2 – Cataclysm – WoW preview panel

Panel starting now. I’ll post updates here live.

  • WoW.com is showing Worgen as having druid as a playable race option.
  • 12:32 – preview panel starting. Tom Chilton & Chris Metzen, Alex, & Cory Stockton
  • 12:34 – Cataclysm
  • Chris Metzen: WotLK putting the Lich King in your face & taunting you was a good decision, so by the time we face him, we’ll know who he is and want him dead.
  • Metzen: Deathwing Story & Lore – Deathwing from Warcraft 2. One of 5 dragon aspects of the dragonflights who were supposed to protect Azeroth. “Was the Earth Warder. His charge was to protect the realm of earth.” “Deathwing, given his proximity to the aspect of earth, spent a lot of time in the earth… Heared the whispers of the old gods…. Drove him mad. Unleashed his power… ripped him apart. Have to seal & brand iron plates on his hide to hold him together… over the ages, Deathwing has had a single purpose to subjugate Azeroth…”
  • Metzen: The power of the old Gods has gotten worse & magnified deathwing’s power. To spark the cataclysm, in Deepholm, Deathwing has woken from his slumber & erupted into the world. His explosion into the world has caused the Cataclysm. “No part of the world has been left untouched”.  His agents come out & help him take over the world. “He is the great enemy that has to be dealt with at this time”. “He is indeed the worldbreaker”
  • 12:40 – Reemergence of elemental plains – Plenty of calamity to go around.
  • Worgen: “I think many of us have loved the worgen for many years. When we were talking about the new alliance race…. we kinda liked the idea of having a more monstrous race.” “The goblins… they’re just so cute!” For the Worgen: Graymane closed off the graymaine wall, but as Dalaran fell and the scourge marched ever southward, a Dalaran Wizzard (Arogal) summoned creatures who could fight the scourge for him, it ended up being just as terrifying as the scourge it’s self. The worgen curse made it into Gilmayis (spelling?) and we’ll get to see where the ancient curse came from in the playable starting area. Are the worgen from somewhere else? Or from somewhen else? “The wolverine of the Alliance”
  • 12:45 – Alex: Playable at Blizzcon: Worgen & Goblin starting area (at level 6, not level 1, so they can keep some secrets).
  • 12:45 – Metzen:  Goblin – The ones you play are a specific group of goblins, from off the coast south of Azshara. They meet & befriend the Horde. Have Wrathgate-like cinematic clips in the starting areas for both Goblin & Worgen.
  • 12:48 – “there are some dark days ahead. We thought it got bad in Northrend… It is going to test the alliance and the horde. The horde may need some comic relief, and the goblin just fit that perfectly”
  • 12:49 – Upheaval. Picture of Thrall & Bloodhoof rescuing horde babies.
  • “State of natural upheaval… and a lot of new stress within and between the Horde and Alliance.” “We were pressed to the edge of our seats… Part of us isn’t coming home again”. As the soldiers of the Alliance and Horde come home, nothing is ever going to be the same again. As you come home, the world will be in upheaval. “We wanted to ramp up the drama”.
  • “If you have been playing WoW since the beginning, you’ve probably seen some pretty dramatic changes, especially in the last year with Lich King.”
  • “Put the war back in World of Warcraft”.
  • 3:53: New features – Level cap increased to level 85. “why isn’t it 90?” “This is one of the key decisions we made.” “Redoing the level 1 to 60 zones.” “Have a lot of new level-up content. Want to have more new content”. Thought it would be right to only do a 5 level increase.
  • Two new races. Will talk about racials (dark flight – sprint) in later pannels. “World of worgencraft”
  • Everything for Worgen except paladin & priest. This means there WILL be WORGEN DRUIDS.
  • Goblin – Rocket belt lets them do damage to target. Greg Street to talk more about it in class panel.
  • New zones: Hyjal, Lost Isles, Gilneas, Uldum, Deepholm, Sunken City of Vashj’ir, Twilight Highlands.
  • “We’ll make sure it’s not annoying to play under water”
  • 12:59 – “Classic world revamp of every zone with updated quests, art, and items.”
  • We’ll get to ditch agi/spirit quest rewards (or at least if we don’t, there will be hell to pay).
  • Guild advancement system (level up your guild for new perks). Pvp/game system pannel. Covers more new features than just pvp. Guild talent tree. Mass resurrection ability to res your guild after a wipe.
  • 1:01 – Tauren paladin (“Holy cow”). Gnome priest (“finally self-sufficient). Dwarf shaman (“pound those hammers, create some earthquakes”).
  • 1:02 – Phased terrain in Azeroth. Makes quests & stories more fun & interesting.  Shows before & after (coast line shrinking). World-changing kind of stuff.
  • 1:03 – Archeology – Use runes to make discovery & do some research. Will lead to path of the titans. Get artifacts & take them to world groups that will be talked about more later. Profession helps with path of the titans progression.
  • Paths of the titans – Instead of talent trees being extended, they are allowing paths of the titans (get 5 talent points, but not deepening the trees).
  • 1:07 – Mastery System – Supplement the talent tree to make you more powerful.

The World (new zones)

  • 12:08 “Cataclysm on azeroth reveals new lands and affects old favorites. Five adventure zones for level 78 to 85”
  • Starting zones 1 to 15.
  • Fly everywhere! No restrictions (no more “no flying over wintergrasp”)
  • Alliance lost South shore
  • Leveling up through the zones in cataclysm will be different & have a different “feel”.
  • The Barens: Split in half down the middle!!!! Regrown with trees!
  • Desolace: Shore cracked in and allowed it to regrow.
  • Darkshore: “A zone we always wanted to get back to.” Auberdine destroyed & forced to move northward. Horde took over part of Darkshore.
  • Stonetalon Mountains: Goblins cut it open. “There is even more charred vale”
  • Azshara is new Goblin 10 to 20 zone. They moved the mountain & Turned it into a quarry.
  • Revisions to all the cities. Undercity filled in & looks much more epic. Can fly in all cities.
  • Deepholm is like the new Dalaran.
  • Sunken City of Vashj’ir: “Was the original home of Lady Vashj.  We’re having an underwater zone with combat on the sea floor, that plays like you would on land. When you want to swim, you can swim up into water seamlessly, and when you land, you go back to normal gameplay. Will have some indoor areas.
  • Normal flying speed for underwater mounts to get around in the water.
  • 1:18 – Deepholm: Inside the elemental plain. Temple of Earth – where Deathwing was “nursed” back. Twilight hammer serves Deathwing & now they are scary. Twilight Hammer all around now. Subterranean environment (like a huge cave). Probably the biggest zone, since it’s the “hub of all 5 zones”. Can fly in there. Deathwing’s domain.
  • Portals in Deepholm to the other new zones, and you can travel back to Deepholm from those zones.
  • Uldum – Feels like Egypt (Bran Bronzebeard will make an appearance). Rumored to hold a super weapon. “Everyone wants to find out what it is”. “Uldum’s day weapon”.
  • New creature race in Uldum – “Stone-like cat people” – The Tol’vir.
  • 1:24 – Mount Hyjal – “Hyjal is under siege by Ragnaros.” Wants to burn World Tree. We banished him, but “it was too soon”, and now he’s back and angry. Malfurion Stormrage is back from the Emerald Dream & He’s Pissed, too! “They’re going to get it on!”
  • Hyjal – Quests & phasing related to burning of the world tree.
  • 1:27 – Twilight Highlands – East of Wetlands (replacing Grim Batol). Grim Batol was split in two by Deathwing.  Headquarters of Twilight’s Hammer.
  • “Two new port towns for Horde/Alliance”
  • “Red dragons pushed back, base here.”
  • “New flight, Twilight Dragonflight”

Dungeons & Raids

  • “Many new Dungeons & Raids”: The Firelands, Uldum, Blackrock Caverns (in Blackrock spire), Grim Batol (level-up & raid), Skywall (level-up & raid)
  • Heroic deadmines & Shadowfang Keep Level 85

PvP Preview

  • Tol Barad PvP zone (like a blending of wintergrasp & Isle of Quel’Denas) – PvP during battles & daily quests when battles aren’t on.
  • Battle for Gilneas one of the new Battlegrounds
  • New Arena maps (# of them to be determined)
  • Rated Battlegrounds – More in systems panel.
Posted in Blizzcon

Blizzcon Friday – Post 1 – Opening Ceremonies

Introduction: While I don’t get to attend Blizzcon in person, the live streaming version is the next best thing. The live stream schedule is currently posted: They start coverage at 11:00 am PST (2:00 EST). Opening ceremonies are scheduled to start at 11:30 AM PST, which is 2:30 pm EST. The next interesting event is something called “World of Warcraft Preview Panel”, which starts at 12:30 PST. If they announce a new expansion in the opening ceremonies, I’m expecting this first panel to be one talking about it. The live stream doesn’t have any other scheduled WoW stuff until the WoW class panel is at 5pm, which I may start a new post for if this one gets too long.

DSC00634

Live updates will start here and newer posts will be at the bottom of this thread. Twitter (@restokin) will be making announcements as I update it, so I’ll try not to spam too much.

  • 9:45 am PST: Live streaming feed has already started. They are showing video clips from last year’s Blizzcon as filler while we’re waiting for the event to start, along with the older cinematic clips for Diablo 3, Starcraft 2, and World of Warcraft. Nothing new yet!
  • 10:19 am PST: Even with replaying old clips, I’m already getting some stuttering & freezing in the live internet feed. Lets just hope this doesn’t crash too many times during the event, lol.
  • 10:43 PST: Behind the scenes clips showing on live streaming version. Currently showing us inside Blizzard headquarters. Having technical difficulties & showing them getting makeup instead of the clip, lol, then cut to commercials again. I guess it was a little premature…
  • 10:51 pst: Had to log into vent to talk to my boyfriend who is on the other side of the room, since I had to put on our noise canceling headphones & the sound is up to loud… Even watching Blizzcon from home is hard work!
  • 11:00 PST:  Live streaming version up and running now!!!
  • 11:05 pm – Wow.com twitter announcing Monk as a playable class for Diablo 3.
  • 11:10 pm – On the live stream, during a backstage look at Blizzard headquarters, someone mentioned working on a WoW expansion, but it was pretty vague.
  • 11:23 pm – Live stream is showing us the noob toys that people get to buy at Blizzcon. They look pretty cool. Too bad the viewers at home can’t get them. :(

———————————-

  • 11:30 pm – Opening ceremonies should be starting soon!
  • 11:31 pm – Opening ceremonies have begun!
  • 11:32 pm – Gary Planter: Joking about Blizzcon Pet peeves. Reminding people to be courteous & mindful of other people, lol. More talking & introductions. 1700 computers at Blizzcon.
  • 11:35 pm – Mike Morhaime takes the stage.
  • 11:36 – Mike Makes “cataclysmic” joke (everyone “rooting for something cataclysmic to happen”)
  • 11:39 – Twice as many people watching Blizzcon from home as there are actually attending.
  • 11:40 -Showing memorable moments from Wrath launch & last year’s Blizzcon.
  • 11:44 – Mike tries to make jokes about realm transfers. Talks about current WoW features.
  • 11:45 – Talks about Faction transfers to mixed boos & cheers. Calls it “flip flopping” as it’s called in politics.
  • 11:45 – 5 year launch. Revamping onyxia. First encounter a “setback”
  • 11:46 – shipping SC2 this next year & bnet platform. Bnet enhance how we interact with people. Announcing plans. 3:30pm will announce bnet plans.
  • 11:46 – Sam Rami – Attended last year’s Blizzcon. Directing Warcraft movie.
  • 11:47 – SC2 single player campaign playable at Blizzcon.
  • 11:50 – Mike talks about Noobs figures. Jokes about selling them on ebay for the price of a small car.
  • 11:50 – Saturday night: ETC, Ozzie, etc. Saturday night.
  • 11:52 – /cheer like you mean it
  • 11:52 – Chris Metzen takes the stage.
  • 11:54 – Chris has a t-shirt on the stage that Blizzard employees will be wearing.
  • 11:56 – “Lich king is going to pee his little panties…”
  • 11:57 – Diablo players: Working on Diablo III. Monk player class announced. They showed a new cinematic trailer for Diablo 3.
  • 12:00 – Gameplay sequence for monk, “so you can see it in action”. It looks awesome.
  • 12:03 – New expansion for World of Warcraft announced: “The wait is over”. The first gameplay trailer of the next WoW expansion set. “It’s a doozy.”
  • 12:05 – “Nothing less than earth shattering.” “change the face of world of azeroth as you know it:

World of Warcraft Cataclysm Information!!!

  • Trailer Clip quotes: “but there can be no peace when the world… is devoured by rage” “and the world will never be the same” “as the elements battle for supremacy… transformed” “ancient lands torn…” “newfound life has also awakened” “At the heart of the ocean, the maelstrom…”
  • Goblins become scattered refugees on the lost isles. “In their hour of greatest need, the goblins have found new allies… In the horde”
  • Graymaine wall has been shattered. Worgen playable race announced.
  • Flying mounts in Azeroth. Level cap 85. Troll druid announced. Deadmines heroic dungeon.
  • Archeology secondary skill.
  • Deathwing has returned

————————-

  • 12:15 Mike Morhaime on Direct TV streaming version interview post-opening ceremonies.
  • SC2 Beta will start this year.
  • Cataclysm may be released in 2010.
  • Mike Morhaime borrowed money from his relatives to start the game company that turned into Blizzard (the company was originally called Silicon & Synapse).

—————-

12:29 – This thread is already too long. I’m making a new one for the WoW preview panel.

Posted in Blizzcon

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