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Mists of Pandaria Beta: Item upgrade strings surface

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Two interesting new client strings were unearthed early this morning on MMO-Champion related to the elusive item upgrade system that Blizzard has yet to completely flesh out for players. Valor points are changing their focus in Mists of Pandaria, to be used as a way to upgrade existing gear rather than being used to buy all-new pieces. This new system has yet be comprehensively explained, and these new client strings are our first hint at the system's actual implementation.

The basic understanding of the item upgrade system is that justice points will be used to purchase the first pieces of gear from vendors, and valor points will be used to turn that gear into better gear. What this hopefully means is that rather than having two vendors selling the same items with different stats, we can have a justice vendor who sells you items and then upgrades them via some interface dealie with valor points. Hopefully, the number of vendors decreases, because right now it's sort of a pain.
ITEM
  • ITEM_UPGRADE - Item Upgrade
ITEM_UPGRADE
  • ITEM_UPGRADE_DESCRIPTION - Use your valor points to upgrade a weapon or piece of armor that is level 375 or higher.
Honestly, I've been under the impression that Blizzard itself still had the system in flux, so anything being said about just wasn't set in stone. Now, with new client strings and references to upgrading your raid items, it looks like the system is closer to completion.

It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: Raiding, Mists of Pandaria

Counterpoint: Yes, we should track raiding progression

There's been a lot of hemming and hawing lately about how Wrath is too easy. And there's no question that it is: Ensidia cut through the endgame like an epic dagger through the Vykrul, and any guild that steps into the endgame these days, even with low numbers or cheap gear, finds success. Adam suggested this morning that raiding is so easy these days that we shouldn't bother to track progression, and while Adam is a great writer and a terrific player, I'm here to disagree with his opinion: progression is exactly what the new endgame is all about.

While Karazhan was one of the (if not the) most successful instances ever, it had one big problem: it killed guilds. It murdered progression. It was a roadblock after a roadblock, so much so that it took some guilds months to conquer, if they survived at all. Ten man Naxx obviously doesn't have that problem -- anyone with a little raiding experience who wants to beat bosses in there can do so, and Obsidian Sanctum is just as easy. The problem now, however, is that guilds like Ensidia and guilds who pushed through to Sunwell in the old endgame, are finishing the content already, and wondering what's next? They were 80 two weeks ago, and now, barely a month after the expansion's release, they've toppled every dungeon they can find.

And what's wrong with that? Nothing.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Expansions, Raiding, Bosses, Wrath of the Lich King

PTR 3.0.3 Patch Notes

Looking for the Patch Notes that are being pushed to the live servers? We've got that, too.

Blizzard has released the notes for the Patch 3.0.3 on PTR (Public Test Realm). With the PTRs going to patch 3.0.3, I wouldn't be surprised to see 3.0.3 hit the live servers next week. Also, please note that these patch notes appear to be in flux and are being updated. We'll keep you posted with any changes.

While patch 3.0.2 has a lot of great new content, there have been a fair share of bugs in the game. This patch will fix some of those, and change around a few other things. Remember, there will be an ongoing series of changes – the game itself won't seem normal until Wrath of the Lich King.

Some highlights of this patch include:
  • Druid talent points are refunded (only Druids)
  • Hunter aspects are off the global cooldown
  • Vampiric Touch has had its spell power coefficient doubled
  • Warlocks can now use an Infernal indoors
  • Bloodthirst cooldown is now 5 seconds
  • No more level requirement to train gathering skills
Read on after the break for the full PTR patch notes.

Read more →

Filed under: Patches, News items, Wrath of the Lich King

Honor points and marks reset in WotLK

We all had an inkling this was coming, right? I mean, it is Blizzard and they do things that are occasionally "evil." So it should be no surprise to anyone that Eyonix announced today that they will be resetting all the honor points when Wrath of the Lich King is released.

In his post he does mention that they will be putting in a few new items that are purchasable with honor points only. At least those that have piles of points saved up can get something. Let's just hope that it's something you can use. They will be appearing on the PTR shortly.

The reasoning behind this is that Blizzard wants there to be an even playing field when everyone hits 80. If people saved up tons of honor points and marks, they could be used to immediately purchase the newest PvP gear. That would create an imbalance.

Read more →

Filed under: News items, PvP, Wrath of the Lich King

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