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Voice chat FAQ


We all have questions about the new voice chat features that's coming in patch 2.2. Helpfully, Blizzard has posted a FAQ, answering many of these very questions. Some of them are fairly obvious ("What is the new voice chat feature in World of Warcraft?"), but several answer things I was genuinely curious about:
  • Q: Can I speak in more than one channel at a time?
    A: While you can join multiple chat channels, you can only have voice chat enabled in one channel at a time. You can switch voice chat between channels by using the new chat interface found in the social window, or by clicking on the voice chat options button located near the mini-map.
  • Q: As a parent or guardian, how can I control my children's access to the voice chat feature?
    A: Parents and guardians have the ability to manage voice chat via the parental control system found on the official World of Warcraft website. You can turn voice chat off entirely or allow your children to listen but not speak in voice chat. The voice chat feature defaults to "off." If parental controls are enabled on an account, you will need to turn on voice chat via the parental control system (found in the account-management section of WorldofWarcraft.com) before it can be used in the game.
  • Q: Does voice chat work in guild chat or when using the "/say" command to talk to characters in your immediate vicinity?
    A: At this time, the integrated voice chat feature does not work in guild chat, "/say," global defense, trade, or any public chat channel. However, we may look into offering voice chat functionality for the guild chat channel in the future.
  • Q: Do raid leaders have moderator rights?
    A: Yes, raid leaders have moderator rights and can mute players in the raid voice chat channel for all other players in that channel.
  • Q: Can I mask my voice?
    A: Voice masking is not currently available. This is a feature we are looking into and may consider for the future.
The entire FAQ is posted after the cut. Are you excited about voice chat?

Q: What is the new voice chat feature in World of Warcraft?
A: The voice chat feature is the proprietary in-game voice communication system for World of Warcraft. It allows World of Warcraft players to communicate with each other using a simple-to-use interface that is seamlessly integrated with the game.

Q: Is the voice chat feature free?
A: There is no additional charge to use the voice chat feature; it is included with your monthly subscription fee.

Q: How does the voice chat feature work?
A: The voice chat feature is fully integrated within World of Warcraft. You can enable voice chat by accessing the sound options screen and turning it on. When enabled, it can be configured to transmit your voice either whenever you speak or only while you hold down a button. You can also use it to listen to other players without transmitting your own voice.

Q: Can I speak in more than one channel at a time?
A: While you can join multiple chat channels, you can only have voice chat enabled in one channel at a time. You can switch voice chat between channels by using the new chat interface found in the social window, or by clicking on the voice chat options button located near the mini-map.

Q: Why did you choose to implement voice chat?
A: Since launching World of Warcraft, we have made a number of improvements to the interface to offer players more convenience and ease of use. The voice chat system is another such feature. It is simple to use and fully integrated into World of Warcraft, making it that much easier for players to communicate with each other.

Q: Can I still use third-party voice chat programs with World of Warcraft?
A: Yes, you can still use third-party voice chat programs while the integrated voice chat is disabled. However, World of Warcraft's voice chat feature allows you to use a simple system built into the game's user interface rather than toggling between multiple programs. Additionally, the voice chat feature in World of Warcraft displays who is speaking at any given time directly in the game interface.

Q: Will I be able to customize voice chat through World of Warcraft, or is it accessed via the account management webpage?
A: You can access the voice chat options via the in-game options menu. The parental control options of the voice chat feature are accessible via the parental control system located on the official World of Warcraft website.

Q: As a parent or guardian, how can I control my children's access to the voice chat feature?
A: Parents and guardians have the ability to manage voice chat via the parental control system found on the official World of Warcraft website. You can turn voice chat off entirely or allow your children to listen but not speak in voice chat. The voice chat feature defaults to "off." If parental controls are enabled on an account, you will need to turn on voice chat via the parental control system (found in the account-management section of WorldofWarcraft.com) before it can be used in the game.

https://www.worldofwarcraft.com/login/login?service=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.worldofwarcraft.com%2Faccount%2Fparental-control-schedule.html

Q: Can I speak in custom voice chat channels?
A: Yes, custom voice chat channels seamlessly work with existing custom chat channels such as raid, group, battlegrounds, healing, melee, etc. You can also create custom chat channels and use them to communicate with any other players who are in them.

Q: What are custom channels, how do I use them?
A: With the new chat channel interface you'll see a section labelled "Custom." These are the same channels you can join by typing /join and then a custom channel name. By clicking the New button you can create your own channel, as well as set a password.

Q: Does voice chat work in guild chat or when using the "/say" command to talk to characters in your immediate vicinity?
A: At this time, the integrated voice chat feature does not work in guild chat, "/say," global defense, trade, or any public chat channel. However, we may look into offering voice chat functionality for the guild chat channel in the future.

Q: Are there raid, group, and one-on-one channels?
A: Yes, there are raid, group, and one-on-one voice chat channels. You can select what private channel to speak in via the in-game chat menu system. For example, you can move back and forth among private voice chat channels without leaving the game.

Q: Do raid leaders have moderator rights?
A: Yes, raid leaders have moderator rights and can mute players in the raid voice chat channel for all other players in that channel.

Q: Can I mask my voice?
A: Voice masking is not currently available. This is a feature we are looking into and may consider for the future.

Q: Is there a limit on how many people can talk at one time?
A: Each channel is limited to 40 voice chat-enabled players. While more than 40 players can be present in a channel, only 40 may have that channel as their active voice chat channel. In addition, only four players may speak simultaneously in a voice chat channel.

Q: Can you mute individuals by character name?
A: Yes, you can mute another player by right-clicking on his or her character name. This will prevent you from hearing anything said by that player. Any players already on your ignore list or added to it will also be muted. These two lists together will allow you to mute voice chat for 75 unique players.

Q: How can I deal with someone who's being disruptive in voice chat?
A: While voice chat is not moderated by our in-game support team, we've provided tools to enable players to appropriately block or otherwise avoid voice chat from unwanted sources. At any time, you can right-click a player's name and select the Mute option to avoid receiving voice chat from that player. If you right-click a player's name and select the Ignore option, you will not receive voice chat or text chat from that player. To avoid having uninvited players join your private chat channel, you can set a password for the channel. We also recommend viewing the updated Parental Controls page in account management, which now includes the ability to block or alter the use of voice chat on an account. For more information on how to use the voice chat features and controls, please visit our online voice chat manual. (Parental Controls Page and Voice Chat Manual should be available soon.)

Q: Will voice chat affect my gameplay (performance) or latency?
A: Voice chat does use additional bandwidth, but with a high speed Internet connection such as DSL or cable it shouldn't be noticeable. If you are already experiencing high latency or performance issues, enabling voice chat may increase them.

Q: My voice quality is poor, how can I improve it?
A: As voice chat does run in a separate thread from the game some newer multi-core or multi-threaded processors may help improve voice chat performance, and in some cases quality. We've found that USB headsets can, in most cases, be easier to configure and provide better outgoing audio quality. Other factors can include the quality of your Internet connection and the quality of the microphone being used.

Q: What happens to voice chat while I'm loading into a new zone?
A: Voice chat will continue to function while zoning, and even while Alt-Tabbed out of the game.

Q: When can I try it out?
A: You can help us test the voice chat feature right now by logging in to the Public Test Realm and trying it out. Visit the PTR section of account management (located at WorldofWarcraft.com) to download the PTR client. If you want to play on the PTR using an existing character, instructions for copying a character to the PTR are also available at the page linked to above.

Filed under: Patches

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