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Posts with tag item-upgrade

Patch 5.4.8: Deeds of Valor, Valor upgrades, and Garrosh heirlooms

It's interesting to me how valor point upgrades have replaced raid wide player buffs or debuffs to the fights, as we saw in Icecrown Citadel and Dragon Soul respectively. Perhaps it's because valor upgrades can serve a variety of functions beyond just making one raid easier. At any rate, in patch 5.4.8 (undergoing PTR testing right now) we'll see the valor upgrade system get a bump.

But it's not just the valor upgrades that will be changing. Players who spend a lot of time on the Timeless Isle and have a lot of coins they can't do anything will now be able to exchange the coins for Deeds of Valor, which will be a straightforward swap of 3000 timeless coins for 100 valor points. You'll still have your weekly and monthly valor caps to contend with, but now, you can at least do something with all those timeless coins on your currency tab.

Finally, because we'll be able to upgrade our items twice more (up to the 4/4 upgrade level) the special heirloom weapons from Garrosh Hellscream will also be automatically upgraded, gaining an additional 8 ilevels. This is to make sure that players using those heirlooms as their main weapon don't have to abandon them for an item which can be upgraded.

Head to the official site's forums for more details.


Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, Mists of Pandaria

Patch 5.3: Item upgrades to return for PvE, not for PvP

The future of Item Upgrades Returning for PvE, but not for PvP
Blizzard posted a blog today on the much-discussed return of the item upgrades to the game in patch 5.3. Lead Systems Designer Greg "Ghostcrawler" Street had commented in recent interviews that the system would be very unlikely to return for PvP, so there's no great surprise in that statement. There will still be upgrades available in patch 5.3 for season 12 gear, which was always upgradeable, at its original cost, so 750 Conquest for four item levels, useable twice. As the blog states, "no other PvP items are upgradable, and no new PvP items for the foreseeable future will use the upgrade system."

This is a good thing. There are already potential issues emerging thanks to the item levels of the new gear, where the gaps in between the lower tiers and the upper tiers look to be too great, and adding item upgrades into the mix would only cause more problems.

For PvE, as expected, the item upgrade system will be reappearing in patch 5.3. However, some changes have been made that iron out some issues the Blizzard team was unhappy with.

Read more →

Filed under: News items, Raiding, Mists of Pandaria

25-man raids have harder challenges and better rewards on Asian realms

Difficulty level Asian

The European raiding team Method had a chance to interview Ion Hazzikostas, World of Warcraft's Lead Encounter Designer. Most of the discussion centered around the recently released item upgrade system that came in patch 5.1. One of the more interesting tidbits is how item rewards and raids are slightly different in Asia compared to the European and North American regions.

Ion Hazzikostas

How does the upgrading system work on the Asian servers? From what I have seen their items are upgradable not 2, but 4 times. Won't this result in a problem while tuning the bosses of the next content?

Ion: The way it works in Asia, we actually use the upgrade system to create the distinction between 10 player and 25 player that we previously announced for 5.1. So in Korea, Taiwan and China, when you kill a boss in 25 player mode, it drops an item that is already 2/4. So instead of 496, it drops as 504 but can be upgraded 2 more times, so effectively they are 8 ilvls higher but you are still only upgrading any item twice. The other thing that is changed in 5.1, is actually that all 25 player bosses have 8% more health and do 8% more damage, than they do in the US or Europe. It is a bit more like the Wrath of the Lich King system, where 25man is just harder and drops higher item level loot but in theory doing 25 player with 25 player loot in Asia should be the same as doing 25 with 25 loot in Europe/US.

Items that drop in 10-man raids have 0/2 upgrades. Items that drop in 25 man raids have 2/4 upgrades. This is similar to the Wrath of the Lich King model of rewards. Blizzard has already stressed that Asian realms aren't used as "experimental realms" for possible system changes in other regions around the world. In other words, it isn't likely that we'll see these types of reward systems in place anytime soon. But it's an interesting solution to the whole 10 man vs 25 man raiding issue and logistics incentives.

The interview dove into other topics such as:

  • Brawler's Guild
  • Dominance Offensive
  • Current raiding discussion

To those of you who play on Asian realms, we'd love to hear from you regarding your raiding experiences and this reward structure. 25-man raids seems to be the dominant raiding format compared to 10-man raids in that region.


Mists of Pandaria is here! The level cap has been raised to 90, many players have returned to Azeroth, and pet battles are taking the world by storm. Keep an eye out for all of the latest news, and check out our comprehensive guide to Mists of Pandaria for everything you'll ever need to know.

Filed under: News items

Patch 5.1 changes item tooltip displays

Patch 51 changes item tooltip displays
As part of the Patch 5.1 item upgrade system it seems our item tooltips got a redesign as well. Instead of having the sockets and enchants appear above the green text, as they do in this old screenshot of patch 4.3 valor purchases, the information is now broken up so that the item's base statistics are displayed first, and any enchants or item upgrades are displayed after.

At first I had a typical 'eww, why'd they change that' visceral reaction of distaste for the change, but going back and looking at the older item screenshots, I think the new format is easier to read and puts the information in a more coherent and organized way. Having the item's basic stat information and reforges up top makes it clear what's basic to the item and what's an enchant or gem. It makes knowing what the item's upgrade level and reforges are easier, in my opinion. I'm still not used to the change, but I expect I'll grow accustomed to it.


Mists of Pandaria is here! The level cap has been raised to 90, many players have returned to Azeroth, and pet battles are taking the world by storm. Keep an eye out for all of the latest news, and check out our comprehensive guide to Mists of Pandaria for everything you'll ever need to know.


Filed under: News items, Mists of Pandaria

Gear that's used as a currency will keep its upgraded status

Gear that's used as a currency will keep upgraded status
If the title confused, you, fear not, you're not alone. WoW Insider had to read Bashiok's post a few times to wrap our collective heads around it, too.

Bashiok
Quote:

So here is my question.. If you upgrade the Regular Season 12 Malevolent gear twice and then say you get 2200 and upgrade to the elite, does your upgrades you already made to the previous gear remain or do you now have to spend additional conquest to upgrade the 2200 gear twice now?

They remain. If a piece of gear is used as currency for a new piece of gear, upgrades are preserved.


Say, for example, you have a piece of the standard-issue Malevolent set, the current conquest set. You achieve a rating of 2200, and in order to upgrade your piece to the Elite equivalent, you have to hand in the original piece. It's a straight swap.

And players can now upgrade the standard-issue Malevolent pieces with conquest points, so what Bashiok's saying is that those upgrades will remain in place on the Elite equivalent. The Elite equivalent can, of course, also be upgraded with conquest points. This is only currently relevant for conquest gear changes, as this is the only situation where gear items are used to purchase other gear items. It would not apply to raid finder tokens, as it's the token that is redeemed, rather than the item itself. That is not to say that other applications of this rule will not arise in future, as they have in the past. Wrath heroic raid upgrades used a similar system, and, of course, both Cataclysm legendary weapons. With the minimum item level for upgrades set at 458, these items will not be applicable for the upgrade system.

However, it will be interesting to see if it applies with the Elite conquest weapons. These, unlike the armor, are a substantial upgrade in item level, going from 470 to 490. If the upgrades are passed on with these items, it could result in an even more problematic gear escalation situation than currently exists in PvP.

Mists of Pandaria is here! The level cap has been raised to 90, many players have returned to Azeroth, and pet battles are taking the world by storm. Keep an eye out for all of the latest news, and check out our comprehensive guide to Mists of Pandaria for everything you'll ever need to know.

Filed under: PvP, Mists of Pandaria

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