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Posts with tag fire-lands

Firelands raid changes incoming

With the upcoming release of patch 4.3 and the final fight with Deathwing, Blizzard is reevaluating encounter difficulty in all Firelands normal and heroic mode encounters. Over the next few weeks, Blizzard will be toning down the encounters in Ragnaros' home turf to allow more groups to clear and complete the content before the final raid. It appears that the cuts will be coming to both regular and heroic modes, with about the same effect as the 4.2 changes to the first tier of Cataclysm raiding. The difficulty of Firelands will begin to be hotfixed the week of Sept. 19.

I think that the Icecrown Citadel approach, nerfing raiding content as the tier progresses, is an excellent move by Blizzard to keep raiders playing and trying encounters they may have fallen just short on progression. World firsts have already happened, and that race is long over. Now, groups that weren't working on the content as intensely now have their shot at checking out some of the great encounters in Firelands.

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Filed under: Blizzard, Raiding, Cataclysm

Paragon releases heroic Ragnaros 25-man kill video

Earlier this month, Paragon earned the high honor of world-first heroic Ragnaros kill, downing the Firelord after over 400 attempts on his fight. Heroic mode encounters add something new and difficult to the mix, but it is rare that we see an entirely new phase to an encounter. Paragon's heroic Ragnaros kill video shows the final stage of the heroic fight, in which Ragnaros submerges in his lava pool and emerges at full strength on new legs allowing him movement all over the encounter room.

The final stage of the fight involves Archdruid Hamuul Runetotem, Malfurion Stormrage, and Cenarius assisting players in dealing with the entirely new mechanics this new heroic mode phase presents. If you've been trying Ragnaros or have killed him, you already have experienced the hilarious Living Meteor ability. In that new phase, meteors must be kited over patches of ice on the ground to freeze them, and then players must DPS down meteors to control the number up at any time. At that point, players are also frantically running around extinguishing ground fires and trapping Ragnaros in roots on the ground.

All in all, it looks incredibly fun and challenging, and it's very nice to see Ragnaros putting his new legs to good use kicking the crap out of guilds across the world. My favorite part of the video has to be the end, with the custom death animation for Ragnaros. Watch until the very end -- it's worth it. Congratulations again to DREAM Paragon for their heroic first kill and for this awesome video of the accomplshment.

Filed under: Raiding, Cataclysm

Blizzard Insider #39 goes behind the scenes with the art of the Firelands

Patch 4.2 brought back one of the most iconic WoW villains in the game's history -- Ragnaros, the Firelord. Blizzard Insider interviewed two critical members of the dev team, Lead Level Designer Jonathan Dumont and Lead Environment Artist Gary Platner, to discuss the process and philosophy behind the Firelands' design. Dumont and Platner go into detail about the origins of the Firelands, the design decisions that made the cut and some that didn't, and how the environment animates with the new particle and water effects.

Firelands is one of the most cohesive and engaging locales Blizzard's team has brought to life, in my opinion. Much like Deepholm and Vashj'ir, the Firelands exists to bring the realm of fire to life, when the daunting Sulfuron Keep only existed in our imaginations prior. An interesting piece of info was that Ragnaros' model was rebuilt from scratch, completely overhauling his skeleton, animations, and feel. The new Ragnaros is one of those things, to me, that the Cataclysm did right -- create a new thing with the heart and soul of the original. Ragnaros looks like he belongs.

Check out the full interview after the jump.

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Filed under: Blizzard, Cataclysm

Breakfast Topic: Patch 4.2 is upon us

Finally, patch 4.2 is upon us. Azeroth has undergone many changes since Cataclysm launched, and finally, we are getting the first new "tier" patch for this expansion. Suffice to say, I am very excited. Patch 4.2 represents to me many turning points for World of Warcraft that are putting it back on the path to cohesiveness. Cataclysm's launch was a success, and we were wowed by the features and the set pieces, but patch 4.2 feels like the first time we are getting to see new content that encapsulates the drive and cohesiveness of the Cataclysm motif.

Patch 4.2 brings with it many new features. Players will be able to enter the Firelands, Ragnaros' domain, for a whole slew of new daily quests and player-specific progression. Seven new raid bosses await intrepid raiders, valor point gear will be knocked down to justice level, and the previous tier of content is becoming more accessible to raiders new and old. Loads of new companion pets and mounts await players willing to aid the Avengers of Hyjal's cause. Lucky raiders will also take part in an epic quest to forge the newest legendary item in WoW, Dragonwrath, Tarecgosa's Rest.

I am especially interested and excited for the Molten Front and Regrowth daily hubs that are being introduced for max-level players in Hyjal, as the druids and sentinels break into Ragnaros' home turf, the Firelands, and lay siege for their survival. These dailies and daily hubs represent a philosophy that I love in MMOs -- your personal progression should matter just as much as the progression of the whole. You, individually, will be working with major lore characters and factions to put together the Hyjal offensive, and your decisions get to open up new quest areas and gear vendors in an order that you choose. Putting this type of control back in the players' hands feels like a Burning Crusade move, and I'm a man who loved him some Burning Crusade.

What are you looking forward to when we get to log into patch 4.2? What's your first move in the face of invasion from the Firelands?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

Ask the Devs Round 8 answers your Firelands questions

The Ask the Devs question and answer series continues with Round 8, where Blizzard devs answered user-submitted questions about patch 4.2's raid content, the Firelands. Players are anxiously awaiting the next tier of raid content, and Blizzard has had a lot to answer for due to the changing nature of patches in the months to come.

Blizzard answers some pretty good questions this time around and even addresses the melee DPS problem in many of the tier 11 raid fights. Some answers are a bit cryptic, however. When discussing the planned Abyssal Maw dungeon (we thought it would be a 5-man, but apparently, raid fights would have taken place there as well), Blizzard says that it believes that the Neptulon story is wrapped up fine with Throne of the Tides but doesn't make mention of the Abyssal Maw dungeons making a return. They only mention "for now," so hopefully the complete Neptulon story will be told in the depths of Vashj'ir.

Another interesting point that the devs make is that they don't really understand the complaint that some aspects of the raid game are too easy, when they look at the number of people who have completed the 25-man heroic encounters in relation to the normal content modes. Also, the devs wanted to stress that they were not trying to turn 25-man raiding guilds into 10-man raiding guilds and actively tried to make the 10- and 25-man versions of encounters similar in order to stress that point.

I am very excited for a new Lady Vashj bridge in the Firelands, though. WoW always has the coolest bridges. Read the full Q&A after the jump.

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Filed under: Blizzard, Raiding, Cataclysm

Patch 4.2 PTR: Nozdormu's mortal form, new Sulfuras revealed

Nozdormu, the leader of the Bronze Dragonflight and notable absent aspect, finally has a mortal form in preparation for the legendary quest line to forge Dragonwrath, Tarecgosa's Rest in the upcoming patch 4.2. Nozdormu's model is based on the blood elf and night elf models with modified tier 6 shoulders and some cool tattoos he probably got during one of his time binges out beyond time and space. Let's hope one of them doesn't say "Mom" in Draconic.

In addition to the Nozdormu mortal form, Wowhead News also has models of the new Raven Lord "on fire" version, a more complete version of Majordomo Fandral Staghelm's Druids of the Flame, some 3-D renders of the new "overfiend" enemy from the Firelands (who looks like a baby version of Baleroc), and a human spread out like Bolvar chained up above the Lich King before Tirion bought him that cool new hat.

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Filed under: Cataclysm

Patch 4.2 PTR: Pictures from the Firelands

Firelands is up on the PTR, and official raid encounter beta testing has begun! Beth'tilac, the Red Widow, was the first raid encounter to be tested, and Method has scored the first kill. Lord Rhyolith was the second encounter to be tested (and again, Method got the kill). So far, Firelands is looking like one of the most awesome raid zones yet, and we've got some pictures for you straight from the PTR. Check it out! Patch 4.2 can't come soon enough.

The news is already rolling out for the upcoming WoW Patch 4.2! Preview the new Firelands raid, marvel at the new legendary staff, and get the inside scoop on new quest hubs -- plus new Tier 12 armor!

Filed under: Cataclysm

Patch 4.2: Avengers of Hyjal reputation rings

The Avengers of Hyjal is the new raid reputation being introduced with patch 4.2 for raiders daring enough to enter the Firelands and do battle with Ragnaros' minions. Much like the Ashen Verdict, players will be able to gain rewards with the Avengers as they progress up the reputation tiers. At exalted, ilevel 391 rings will become available in a variety of styles. So far, these rings are available on the PTR:
Blizzard has said that the Avengers of Hyjal faction will work differently from the Ashen Verdict, however, in that it does not want players farming the trash in the Firelands for reputation. Rather, it looks like we will get a system like the Brood of Nozdormu or Hydraxian Waterlords, where after a certain reputation level, the only way to increase your standing with the faction is to kill bosses.

The news is already rolling out for the upcoming WoW Patch 4.2! Preview the new Firelands raid, marvel at the new legendary staff, and get the inside scoop on new quest hubs -- plus new Tier 12 armor!

Filed under: Raiding, Cataclysm

Patch 4.2 preview: The legendary staff, Dragonwrath

Blizzard has released a preview of the legendary staff Dragonwrath awaiting casters in patch 4.2, when players take the fight to Ragnaros' home turf, the Firelands. Players have been clamoring for information about the staff since BlizzCon 2010, when it was announced that the first legendary of Cataclysm would be a DPS staff.

Dragonwrath's story revolves around the Blue Dragonflight's choosing their new leader. Anachronos of the Bronze Dragonflight warns of danger at the Nexus and turns to the players to investigate. Players will take part in an epic quest to reforge the staff that allows the bearer to transform into a blue dragon!

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Filed under: Cataclysm

Patch 4.2: Firelands information features coming soon

Blizzard has released a schedule of patch 4.2 information related to the Firelands, armor tier previews, dungeon journal teaser, and more! Here's what we're expecting in the next couple of days, so stay tuned to WoW Insider for all the information and our commentary.

April 27
April 28
  • "The Firelands" raid preview
  • "A Legendary Engagement" legendary staff preview
  • "The Regrowth and Molten Front Quest Hubs"
  • BlizzCast 16
April 29
  • "Elemental Bonds" quest preview
  • Tier 12 teaser
May 2
  • Dungeon journal teaser
Stay tuned!

WoW Patch 4.1 is live, and WoW Insider has all the latest news for you -- from guides of the revamped Zul'Aman and Zul'Gurub to new valor point mechanics and new archaeology items.

Filed under: Cataclysm

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