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Posts with tag hortus

Hunter pet aggro may be fixed in Wrath

The story of Hunter pets and aggro in Burning Crusade, especially since patch 2.4.2 or so, has been a very stormy one. Even deep Beastmastery Hunters have had to learn to kite, as pet aggro grows worse and worse. Growl in 2.4.2 was supposed to scale, but almost every Hunter that tested it said it didn't, despite Hortus' insistence that it did.

Luckily, it looks like there may finally be some real relief coming in Wrath of the Lich King.

Read more →

Filed under: Hunter, Analysis / Opinion, News items, Instances, Expansions, Leveling, Wrath of the Lich King

Premade characters now available for copy on the PTR



Blizzard forum poster Hortus has announced that premade characters are now available for copy to the PTR for patch 2.4.3. The Character Copy page says that the average wait time for copying is five days, but I've never waited as long as the estimates for my copied toons. I copied mine to the PTR tonight and will let you know how long the transfer takes.

The eighteen premades are all Level 70s, two of each class (one Horde, one Alliance). Undead comprise the largest race (5), followed by Dwarves (4), Gnomes (3), and Orcs (2). There is one character each for Tauren (Druid), Night Elves (Druid), Blood Elves (Paladin), and Draenei (Shaman). They are all specced with gear made for PvP, judging by the character names. So what are you waiting for? Maintenance starts soon! Get out there and copy a premade character -- or four -- for yourself.

[Thanks, Josh and Philip Stetson.]

Filed under: Realm News, Patches, Realm Status, News items, Forums

Yes, Virginia, there will be premade characters, and other PTR Tidbits

In case you were wondering, there will be premade characters for the 2.4.3 PTR before all is said and done, according to Hortus. There's no word for sure on why they're needed, what gear they'll have, or when they'll come along, but they'll be here. You'll need an account that had Burning Crusade activated before these PTRs went live, and when the time comes, you'll be able to sandbox it up with a fresh new premade while you help test the patch.

This phase, says Hortus, is also not intended for testing Season 4 gear, since it was already tested on a previous PTR. Besides, with 4 days left until Season 4 goes live, the 2.4.3 patch won't be on live servers until Season 4 is well underway. That said, it looks like most (but not all) of the Season 4 gear is still on the PTR right now, so if you want to go check it out, you can fly up to Area 52 on the PTR and check out Big Zokk Torquewrench's wares. Of course, you can also expect us to give you all the Season 4 news you need in the next few days here at WoW Insider as well, including gear guides.

Also, Mages and Warlocks are reporting that their self-buff armor spells are now no longer dispellable on the PTR servers. That's a nice chunk of mana you won't have to waste recasting after a stray Purge in PvP. We'll be watching the PTRs for more undocumented changes, oddities, and happenings, so be sure to keep it here for the rest of the testing cycle for all the news and analysis you'll need when the patch goes live.

Filed under: Realm News, Patches, Items, News items, PvP, Buffs, Arena

2.4.3 on its way to PTRs

Daniel told you last night that the official PTR boards were up and character copy was live...but no actual PTR servers were active. We've known a 2.4.3 was going to exist for a little while, since Iriel mentioned it in the UI forums. But, the mystery of when seems to be over at least. Hortus announced on the PTR forum that the 2.4.3 PTR is on its way, and the forums just happen to be up a little early. It's coming fairly soon, too -- he's already telling us to delete our old WoWtest folder in preparation.

2.4.3 seems likely to be built of minor bug-fixes. We've not seen any of the doom and gloom that tends to surround class balance. It's definitely feeling to me like Blizzard's taking the time and effort to shore up their services as they prepare for Wrath of the Lich King. Still, let's see what 2.4.3 has for us.

Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, News items

Hunter Growl and Scare Beast changes not so sweet after all

One of the biggest surprises Hunters found when they logged on after this morning's patch was that all was not as it was supposed to be. Although the tool tip for Scare Beast reads as instant cast, the old 1.5 second cast time is still intact. Netheara confirmed that the reversion of the cast time was, in fact, intentional. It was considered too strong and reverted, although the 30 yard range buff is still intact. The instant cast designation in the tool tip is an error that will be fixed.

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Filed under: Druid, Hunter, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, News items

PTR goes up

Usually Blizzard is pretty definitive when they take something down. However today they've decided to take down the PTR (Public Test Realm) in the morning, and then put it back up early tonight. I'm reminded of a recent Simpsons episode I watched where Homer is sitting in his hospital bed awaiting a heart bypass surgery and goes "Bed goes up, bed goes down. Bed goes up, bed goes down." PTR goes down, PTR goes up.

All of these announcements come from the same person, Hortus, so it's not an issue of him being confused or anything (unless the whirly jig in his head has gotten to him). Hortus does tell us that they've put it up for "some additional testing," which really isn't a surprise given it's a test realm.

This probably means that patch 2.4.2 won't go live tomorrow if there is maintenance. Once we know more we'll post and keep you updated.

Filed under: Patches, News items

PTR is closed

Hortus just posted that the PTR server for patch 2.4.2 has been taken down, and that the PTR phase for the patch has ended. This is a strong indicator that patch 2.4.2 is on its way soon, perhaps during some expected maintenance tomorrow.

Take a look at the official and un-official notes for a comprehensive look at what will change. Nothing in the patch is game-breaking, in my opinion, but there are some nice changes. Some of the major highlights include:
  • Changes to the way arena points are calculated.
  • Void Shatter no longer has a cooldown, and other cooldowns have been reduced.
  • If you are sheeped / polymorphed by a mob, you will no longer gain back health (ie: the mass sheep in Aran, which regens your health before he fire blasts the raid).
  • Many main hand weapons are now one hand weapons.
WoW Insider will carry the latest on the patch, including as soon as we know when it's set to go live. Stay tuned!

Edit 3:24 p.m. EDT: It should be noted that the final version of the patch notes have not been released yet, however they are usually close to what the PTR patch notes are.

Filed under: Patches, News items

Rolling Restarts this morning, April 8th, 2008

It's Tuesday, and you know what that means - Maintenance. Luckily, it's a a relatively pain free maintenance day today, as there's nothing but rolling restarts on the menu starting at 5am PDT. Each realm is expected to be down for no more than 15 minutes.

Of course, that still leaves you with 15 minutes of no World of Warcraft if this is your usual play time. And what's the easiest way to pass those 15 minutes than with a bit of WoW Insider?

Make some quick plans for what to do on server up by checking out our Sunwell daily quest guides. Whether you're on Phase 2 or Phase 3, we have all the guides you need to get started when your server comes back up, plus Phase 4 guides for when you get those last few percentage points worth of dead elves turned in to get it unlocked. Speaking of dead elves, we have guides for the new PvP dailies as well.

If you're a little tired of Sunwell stuff, how about a trip back to Zul'aman? Jennie Lees has written an in-depth guide to speed running Zul'aman that'll help you get one of the rarest and coolest looking mounts in game, the Amani War Bear -- if you can convince, cajole, or beat the other 9 people in your raid into giving it up to you, of course.

Been a little off your game since 2.4? Check Hortus' list to see if it's just a nasty little bug that's getting you down.

Hopefully, the rolling restarts go smoothly and we'll see you on the flipside. Either way, thanks for reading, and keep your browser here for all the latest news!

Filed under: Patches, Realm Status, News items

Known bugs in patch 2.4.1, 2.4.2 on the way

Patch 2.4.1 was rushed out the week after 2.4 hit, to fix some game-breaking errors, and we already know 2.4.2 is in the works; the hard-working Mac CM Tigerclaw, for instance, has mentioned that certain bugs are fixed in 2.4.2. It's a good thing they have another patch on the way, because 2.4.1 has its share of bugs. Hortus has posted a list of about 150 known bugs in the bug reports forum. Here are a few of my favorites:
  • "The /clap emote is not emitting sound if performed more than once." This is a feature, not a bug.
  • "Cloak of Shadows do not remove the curse Shrink." Ha! Where's your CloS now? You're little!
  • "Whirlwind has a new sound." This is a bug? Is it a bad new sound?
  • "The death emote voice-over for Kael'thas Sunstrider in the Magister's Terrace continues after he has already died." You just can't kill this one. Kill him in the Eye, and he comes back in MrT. Kill him in MrT, and he still keeps talking! Maybe we have to burn him.
  • "Abilities/trinkets that trigger after killing an opponent that gives experience or honor are being activated after killing mobs during bombing quests" True. I've gotten a heck of a lot of mana from my Power Infused Mushroom, not that it makes much of a difference.
  • "Using a Papa Hummel's Old-Fashioned Pet Biscuit does not initiate a global item cooldown." Biscuit spam!
For more exciting errors, visit Hortus's post.

Filed under: Patches, Bugs

Undocumented 2.4.1 change list

2.4.1's had a chance to settle in, and as usual, people have been finding a few extra changes that didn't get in the patch notes.

There's nothing too earth shattering, though any Shamans out there who have been trying a dual-wield elemental hybrid build might be feeling a bit set back, since quite a few +spell damage one handers have been changed to main hand only, namely Sedai's Blade, Terokk's Gavel, Archmage's Guile, Seeker's Gavel, K'iru's Presage, and the Battle-mace of the High Priestess. Those of you jewelcrafters who have been feeling guilty about killing your poor Nightseye Panther will be happy to know that it now only fades away instead of dying when its buff ends.

In addition, Normal and Heroic Magisters' Terrace mobs have had thier reputation gain adjusted, and you should now be getting about 2k Shattered Sun Offensive rep per a normal clear. For raiders, they'll find that Brutallus' Meteor Slash is now an unlimited range frontal cone attack, apparently to fix a problem with paladin taunting, accord to World of Raids. In case you missed our previous report on it, the Distraction at the Dead Scar bombing run is also a bit easier to finish.

Finally, one documented non-change: The chat filtering problems that the notes claim were fixed are still present on live servers. Hortus confirmed that the fix had some bad side effects and was pulled at the last minute, but will hopefully reappear in a future patch.

We'll keep watching for any other changes to pop up, so keep it tuned here to WoW Insider.

Filed under: Patches, Items, News items, Instances, Quests, Bosses

Drysc on Blizzard customer service

We are all rather critical of Blizzard at times. After all, many of us spend an inordinate amount of time in the game; especially the WoW Insider staff on patch days. We expect things to work in a certain type of way, and we expect that when we encounter a problem, things will be solved ASAP.

Nothing is wrong with these expectations we have, and indeed we should have them. After all, we want this game to be the best game possible. For many folks it's the only one they'll play. The happiness and smooth sailing in game is principally the responsibility of the customer service department at Blizzard. They're the ones to fix our issues when something goes wrong.

Drysc, one of the most visible community managers, made a wonderful post earlier this week on exactly what happens in Blizzard's support services. The full post and response are worth taking a second to read. The bullet points of his posts are as follows:

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Bugs, Blizzard, News items

Does my human female look psycho to you?

Apparently Blizzard spent some time rebuilding all the player models for Patch 2.4 in order to increase performance. What exactly does this mean to us players who loves the way our characters look? Absolutely nothing. You won't notice any differences in the models at all -- except, that is, if you happen to play a human female. Then you might look deep into your characters eyes and notice a certain "Stepford-wife" look, like a "2000-yard stare," as if her "irises are popping out of her head."

Asariah noticed this and posted his concerns in the Bug Report Forum (did you know there was a Bug Report Forum? neat huh?). Hortus spotted this report and informed us that the human female was the only one of the multiple races to receive a minor alteration from this, and that "it was decided that this was an acceptable change." Apparently someone up there at Blizzard is a big fan of 2000-yard, iris-popping, stepford-wife eyes in women!

For my part, though, I have to get up really close to my human female character to notice the difference -- and then when I do it makes me giggle uncontrollably. It's really no worse, in my opinion, than all those glowy reflections you see in anime girls' eyes. And to be honest, human women have always been a bit vacant-looking in WoW; they're better than human men, of course, but still don't usually look like paragons of profound intelligence. At least they don't bounce up and down like night-elf girls do.

[Via World of Raids]

Filed under: Human, Patches, Humor

Undocumented changes so far in patch 2.4

Now we're to my favorite part of a new patch -- sussing out the undocumented changes. Everyone's really known about the patch notes for months, but it seems like every time Blizzard releases an update, there are always plenty of undocumented changes that don't quite make it in.

WorldofWar.net has a good set of changes so far: Troll offhands are small, Gruul's Lair's and Kara's reset display is off, and Shamans' Mental Quickness talent doesn't seem to be working. A few people have already noticed that there is no repair character on the Isle of Quel'danas yet, but that's only because the daily quests haven't moved forward yet -- with a bigger foothold, the Shattered Sun should be able to bring in a blacksmith or two.

Void Reaver seems to have been buffed a bit, the Shaman clearcasting ding is bugged, and I've heard that the Blood Elf mounts (a.k.a. Chocobos) will now squawk on demand (though I'm not sure that's new). Seen any other undocumented changes on the realms yet?

Filed under: Shaman, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Bugs, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Blood Elves

PTR is down, TTR is up

Hortus, the spinning whirly jig wearing gnome, announced on the forms today that the PTR will be closed until further notice. This closure is in order to encourage more people to test out the TTR, which will remain open for the time being.

This is important news. First, it signifies that Blizzard is at least comfortable in stopping the testing of PvE content. This might not be the best news for those that were still engaged in PTR activities; or for those that think there are still serious concerns regarding the content and class changes. We might be seeing the Druid Cyclone nerf stay.

Secondly, we can infer that the two stress tests they've held might not have been everything they wanted. If they're asking for more testing we can make an educated guess that Blizzard either did not see the kind of numbers they were hoping for, or they have made additional server changes that warrant additional tests. Judging from the lack luster stress test that went on Wednesday night, I'm leaning towards the former as being the reason for the change.

Read more →

Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, News items

Chat highlights from the TTR stress test


As horrible as Barrens chat and the trade channel can be by times, one of my favorite parts of Sunday's tournament test realm stress test was reading through the chats. Although I'm sure the guys had some pretty great tells, considering their names were more obvious than mine (Insideradam, Insideralex, and Vehn), I did catch some gems of my own.

One thing that was rampant on Sunday was names that were clearly against the terms of service, and of course nasty language. So if any of the photos have blurred-out names, you'll know why! Before you jump through, keep in mind there are a few photos, so the load might be slow. Don't forget to check out my full coverage of the stress test!

Read more →

Filed under: Horde, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Events, Fan stuff, Blizzard, Humor, Screenshots, Arena

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