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Posts with tag patch-3.3

Better pet scaling promised in Cataclysm

Hunters and warlocks were given something to look forward to during the Blizzard developer chat on twitter this evening. The question was asked: "You mentioned pet scaling being added for patch 3.3 but due to time constraints, was delayed. Will this be in the next patch?" This is something that has been mentioned throughout the course of the Wrath of the Lich King expansion and hasn't been implemented yet. The reason? It is a fairly complicated procedure.
We'll try to do what we can. Technically it's just more challenging than you might think. For Cataclysm, we have on our list that 100% of stats scale. If they don't then certain stats just won't be as valuable for pet classes. At the very least, we can do stuff like convert your X into damage for the pet so every stat is valuable. Getting everyone to scale with every stat better is a major goal for the class team for Cataclysm.
With hunters, warlocks, and unholy death knights, there are a lot of talents and glyphs that affect the scaling of stats to your pet. If you allow certain stats to scale too well, you suddenly unbalance the class. If the stat scales poorly, then the class falls in the other direction. Every talent and ability that taps into these has to be checked to make sure it doesn't throw things out of whack. Considerations on diminishing returns on certain stats scaling would also need to be checked.

Overall, there is a lot of number crunching and statistical analysis involved in trying to find the right balance between all of the knobs that they need to adjust. However, the frustration of out-gearing your pet will hopefully be behind us either in an upcoming patch or
(more realistically) when Cataclysm hits.

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm will destroy Azeroth as we know it. Nothing will be the same. In's Guide to Cataclysm you can find out everything you need to know about WoW's third expansion. From Goblins and Worgens to Mastery and Guild changes, it's all there for your cataclysmic enjoyment.

Filed under: Hunter, Warlock, Death Knight, Cataclysm

Developer Twitter chat transcript for January 15th, organized by category

After the break is the complete transcript of the developer Twitter chat with Lead Systems Designer Greg "Ghostcrawler" Street and J. Allen Brack. They talked a lot about Cataclysm and upcoming class changes, and reflect on some of the inner workings of patch 3.3. Unlike the last twitter developer chat, this chat was much more substantial and actually provided useful information for us all.

We've broken up all the answers into the following hyperlinked categories for your browsing pleasure.

Table of Contents Look for more analysis and updates on these answers in the coming days on

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Filed under: News items, Cataclysm

The Care and Feeding of Warriors: Destroyer

The Care and Feeding of Warriors is's weekly column for all things angry and clanky. Matthew Rossi writes it, when he's not busy being angry and clanky.

Dev Chat Update: While today's post is about fury, it's worth mentioning that in addition to nerfing Shield Block's contribution to Shield Slam, we will supposedly see a threat buff to the ability. Hopefully it's a scaling, and not a static, threat buff, something that adds X threat for every Y block value or something. They'd also supposedly like to add sustained damage to prot for PvE without PvP burstiness, which would be nice if it happened..

Lately I get plenty of tanking action in raids, to the point where I honestly don't want to do it in PuG's. When musing about it the other day I realized that I'm too used to hard modes and progression when tanking: I demand perfection of myself to such a degree that I get tense and stressed over the smallest error in execution. This is possibly admirable (when not taken too far) in a raid setting on a new boss where strategies are being tested and modified constantly and everything's on the razor's edge between being able to pass the checks inherent to the content.

It's not when you're PuGging Halls of Lightning for a couple of extra Emblems of Frost.

In fact, what can help you get past Rotface is downright madness causing when heading down to Loken. At this point, Loken holds no surprises, and neither does the trash. Being a tanking perfectionist just leads you to tend towards freaking the heck out over stupid crap bored people do, and that's turning the game from fun to a drag for yourself. (It probably does for them, too, but they can look out for themselves.) Lately, I've taken to running the random daily and any 10 mans I PuG on my own as DPS, just to get a break from my own self-imposed desire to try for flawless execution. (I'm not saying I ever accomplish that, by the way, just that I want to.)

And I have to say: fury got good again when I wasn't looking.

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Filed under: Warrior, Instances, Raiding, (Warrior) The Care and Feeding of Warriors

Totem Talk: Fire Nova

Totem Talk is the column for shamans. This week, Matthew Rossi talks about Fire Nova, his absolute favorite new ability in quite some time. Boom!

The hastily cobbled together screenshot above really only gives you a small taste of the awesome that is Fire Nova. The old Fire Nova totem was okay... you'd drop it on big AoE packs if you could do so, but for a lot of shamans, sacrificing their active fire totem to so so was a lot to ask. The genius of Fire Nova, the new ability, is of course that it works with any fire totem you have. You're a restoration shaman with a Frost Resist totem down up close to the melee on Sapphiron? Well, our first question could be "Why are you still running Sapphiron?" but we'll assume it's a weekly raid thing. Anyway, even that Frost Resistance totem can now provide some damage! I'm not saying waste your mana on DPS if it's a tight thing, mind you, I'm just saying that if you found yourself healing a fight you way overgeared you can pop a couple of FN's in there to liven things up.

Yeah, okay, this happened to me. It was boring!

Where Fire Nova has really shined for me, though, is running a modified Enhancement set-up. Now, granted, some of the DPS I'm seeing from this has also come from getting a few upgrades to my gear set, but in tight AoE situations I'm seeing Fire Nova as a solid 2nd on the DPS chart, just behind melee attacks.

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Filed under: Shaman, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, (Shaman) Totem Talk, Wrath of the Lich King

The Daily Quest: Mack rows

We here at are on a Daily Quest to bring you interesting, informative and entertaining WoW-related links from around the blogosphere.

Filed under: The Daily Quest

Breakfast Topic: The all-DPS Group

Oh, you know what I mean. There's five folks in your Dungeon Finder random group. One is signed up as a tank, one is signed up as a healer. Only, the 'tank' is in full DPS plate with nary a shield nor a ghoul in sight (nope, that there's a ret pally/arms warrior, sure enough) or the 'healer' is in full PvP gear and has Flametongue on his healing weapon. You all stand around, waiting for someone to equip gear that would allow them to tank the instance (preferably the tank) but he seems as content to wait it out as everyone else.

Often in these situations I'm unfortunate enough to have decided to DPS on a character that can tank, but luckily (or unluckily as the case may be) yesterday I was on my shaman and so could simply sit back and wait. It was mentioned to the 'tank' that, as the person who had signed up to tank the instance it might behoove him (or possibly her, hard to tell who's behind the keyboard) to slap on a shield and some tanking gear, but only the grim silence of the truly disinterested was our reply. Was he even at the keys? Hard to say. The wait extended to the point where we could safely kick him, and kick him we did. but that's ten minutes or so of my life I'll never get back. (And no, my shaman couldn't tank HHoR, I didn't even try).

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics, Instances, Wrath of the Lich King

Recent in-game fixes

Two minor in-game fixes that were applied last night to the game. These fixes should be active once the servers come back up later this morning/afternoon. They're modifying the Professor Putricide encounter just a tad, and should make a couple annoyances with the fight go away.

The fixes as enumerated by Bornakk are:
  • Professor Putricide's Tear Gas will no longer remove player auras.
  • The Growing Ooze Puddles in the Professor Putricide encounter will no longer continue to grow while players are stunned.
That's all, and if there's any more in-game fixes we'll be sure to let you know.

Filed under: News items

Prot Warrior nerf details

Protection spec warriors, did you enjoy being able to charge out of roots and snares to get back to the boss fast? Well, thanks to PvP, you won't be able to do that anymore. What else won't you be able to do? Well, if you've been stacking block value in PvE content, first off, I kind of don't get you. Seriously, except for very specific gimmicky fights, why would you stack block value? (I said value, not rating, and I also said gimmicky fights so don't bring up Heroic Anub) But if you have been... perhaps you have a block value set for totally destroying adds or something... then get ready for a Shield Slam nerf. They're 'testing that one internally' which, if you remember how horrible the Rage Normalization changes went in early BC, always works.

Honestly, neither of these are huge gamebreakers. I liked that Warbringer cleared roots and snares for me when I was tanking, and I barely even noticed it in PvP: it was like a free self-cast Hand of Freedom. As for nerfing Shield Slam, well, like I said I don't stack block value so a lower block value cap on the ability wouldn't really affect me. Irritate me? Yes, it will do that. But it isn't a game breaker either. Of course, since as the commenters mentioned yesterday prot PvP warriors don't stack shield block value at all (I know you guys don't read my posts, Blizzard, but if for some reason someone is, look at all that ArP. Look at all that lack of block value. It is ArP that drives the prot PvP damage machine. ArP, not block value. Just thought I'd mention that) then I fail to see any point to the change either.

So there we have it: Warbringer gets changed and Shield Slam might get changed which is like taking a club away from a guy who is shooting people.

Filed under: Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, News items, PvP, Talents, Wrath of the Lich King, Arena

The Care and Feeding of Warriors: I deserved that

Every week, Matthew Rossi writes The Care and Feeding of Warriors. Every week, he claws at his feeble brain to come up with a header paragraph, which really is kind of unfair. Warriors shouldn't have to think. Do you have any idea how many blows to the head we take?

So yeah, turns out I should probably have shut up and not told you guys that prot was actually good at PvP. Sorry about that. I'm not going to actually freak out until I see how they plan to balance prot so we're not good at PvP anymore, since I barely even PvP and am far more concerned with prot as a PvE spec, that is to say, tanking with it. If they make a bunch of changes and my threat stays the same and my survivability stays the same and I'm not seeing any major hits to my tanking, then whatever, I'm sure there will be enraged prot warriors still but I won't be one. If, however, I see a 2k threat loss and I'm dying like a chicken trying to tank a bloody heroic, then yeah, I'm gonna be upset.

I'll probably skip 'fevered pet' and move straight into 'enraged mouth breathing' territory. I can think of all sorts of ways to tweak prot in PvP that wouldn't have much of an effect in PvE, and I know the folks at Blizzard are better at class design than I am, so waiting and seeing is the order of the day. That being said I do find it irritating when we get told over and over again that we're fine until suddenly we're not. Just saying, some consistency would be nice.

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Filed under: Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, (Warrior) The Care and Feeding of Warriors, Wrath of the Lich King, Cataclysm

Breakfast Topic: Effective Communication

One of the good things about running more PuG's than ever before is that it's forced me to learn how to communicate what I intend on a pull to a group of people I don't really know. This, in turn, has made me better at communicating with my guildies and friends when we raid, in part because now I'm finally thinking about how to express what I intend to do in a more organized way.

One example is the pulls directly after Krick and Ick in Pit of Saron: even in raiding gear, these pulls can be fairly difficult if steps aren't taken to ensure that the caster mobs are controlled properly from the start and the diseases aren't allowed to run rampant. The Flamebearers in particular with their Tactical Blink and Hellfire abilities can wreak havoc. It's not that these pulls are super difficult, especially not if you make use of abilities like Hex or Polymorph (on the Deathbringers), Shackle, Repentance and so on to ensure that a couple of the mobs are taken out of the equation for a few seconds. I've had these pulls go extremely poorly in groups that were extremely chatty, mind, if what they're chatting about isn't really exchanging any meaningful information.

In our new age of grouping with complete strangers, do you find yourself just hoping your group knows what it is doing? Do you take a leadership role, or have one foisted upon you, and if so how do you go about making sure everyone knows what they should?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Instances

Upcoming class and item balance changes

There has been a lot of good discussion lately concerning various aspects of the DPS status quo. Some classes are putting out too much compared to their cloth counterparts, and others have suddenly found themselves too powerful in certain areas of the game. Blizzard recognizes this, and this evening the Lead System Designer, Ghostcrawler, came out and enumerated a few things Blizzard believes are true.

Ghostcrawler has left the door open to these class and item balance issues being fixed (if Blizzard decides to pursue such fixes) in either a hotfix or through an upcoming patch. Chief among these changes are an increase in warlock DPS, a decrease in rogue DPS, a change in protection warriors to limit their utility in PvP, and refinements to Icecrown Citadel weapon procs.

When looking over this laundry list of areas to change, it's important to remember that Ghostcrawler is not promising a fix, and that he and his team are not ready to share specifics. He has not promised you the pony, so don't be mad if some of these changes don't happen.

Ghostcrawler's full statement after the break.

Read more →

Filed under: Patches, News items

Patch 3.3: Updated Icecrown Citadel raid information

The Icecrown Citadel raid overview here on has been updated with even more information on the bosses contained in the Plagueworks, which has opened this week. You'll find summaries on the new bosses along with links to other resources like loot, videos and detailed strategy for Rotface, Festergut, and Professor Putricide. If you're just setting foot in the instance now, don't worry as there are resources for the first bosses in the Lower Spire.

Enjoy and good luck!

Patch 3.3 is the last major patch of Wrath of the Lich King. With the new Icecrown Citadel 5-man dungeons and 10/25-man raid arriving soon, patch 3.3 will deal the final blow to Arthas.'s Guide to Patch 3.3 will keep you updated with all the latest patch news.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding

In-game changes for January 5th, 2010

There is a new round of in-game fixes that have just been released. Chief among these is a nerf to Lady Deathwhisper in Icecrown Citadel and the ghost waves in normal and heroic Halls of Reflection.

Lady Deathwhisper is having her 25-man normal version changed (not the 10-man) to decrease her mana pool and to decrease the health on all the adds. This means that the shield will go down much faster for guilds currently struggling with that aspect of the encounter. Additionally, tanks get a bit of a buff here in that the Adherents will wait a little bit longer before casting, which means there will be more wiggle room in picking them up. We have a feeling the necessity of these changes will be hotly debated.

The ghost waves in Halls of Reflection have also been changed to allow for easier combinations of mobs (no more two mages in one group). The AoE the mage does will also do less damage and be more interruptable, which should make for an easier time staying grouped up.

The complete list of fixes after the break.

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Filed under: Patches, News items, Instances

In Game fixes for January 4th, 2010

Bornakk recently posted a nice short but sweet list of fixes for the new year. There's a couple gear fixes and one little dungeon tweak that should make a lot of frustrated dungeon finder runners happy:
  • The mail Bloodsunder Bracers have had their appropriate socket bonus added.
  • The proc on Zod's Repeating Longbow should no longer reset auto shots.
  • The gear requirement for heroic Halls of Reflection has been increased.
Like I said, short but sweet. Of course, we do have an extended downtime coming up tonight, and there's a few of us here at the secret headquarters who are thinking (and it's just a gut feeling, mind you) that we'll see a few more patched in bug fixes in the morning. Regardless of what comes though, we will, of course, have all the news right here.

Filed under: Items, Blizzard, News items, Instances

You wouldn't like me when I'm hungry

When writing this Breakfast Topic I noticed in the comments a certain disconnect between how I approach running heroics and how other people seem to. So I thought I'd try and encapsulate the differences and try and help explain why sometimes tanks seem a little touchy or off in runs. It's not just the blows to the head, guys.

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Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Warrior, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Instances, Bosses, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King

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