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Posts with tag valor-points

Heart of the Valorous now live

So, in case you were wondering where that Heart of the Valorous buff was, here it is.

From today (May 30th) till Tuesday, June 10th at 9:00 AM PDT, the Heart of the Valorous buff will be active. It increases all valor points gained by 100%, meaning that (as an example) a daily quest that grants five valor points will now grant ten - it's essentially double your normal valor point acquisition.

All you have to do to earn valor at this rate is log on and do what you would normally do to gain it - there's no special item or requirement. So if you're trying to gear up a series of alts, now's basically the time to get on and play them. You have until June 10th, so get started.

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

Patch 5.4.8 and the wait for Patch 6.0

With patch 5.4.8 we're seeing a new way to achieve an old goal - allow players to get further in established content while it remains the most recent content available. In essence, with this patch, we will be able to buy slightly increased ability to progress with valor points. This isn't new - it's what the item upgrade system has always been.

I've been thinking about the new item upgrades and the Deeds of Valor since they were announced. I haven't been able to play WoW as I'd like lately (health reasons) but one of the things that immediately came to mind when they announced Deeds of Valor was that this was an entirely new way to nerf raid content at the end of an expansion. Instead of a progressive buff to the players, or a progressive nerf to the bosses, we're seeing a mechanical way to spend valor points to gain the same ultimate aim. Making it possible to trade in your Timeless Coins for valor points is a good way for players who are flush from constant Timeless Isle grinding to convert them to something useful, and allowing players to upgrade items an additional 2 times (for a total of four upgrades) serves to nerf content without nerfing it. Everyone will be stronger, will hit harder, will have more mana for heals.

I have some opinions about this, of course. Others have already expressed theirs - and to be fair I accept the basic premise that these are quality of life changes that will cease to matter in patch 6.0. And I'm okay with that, because again, I see this primarily as a way to nerf Siege of Orgrimmar without actually doing so. It gives us another valor dump, of course. But with changes like Heart of the Valorous (which won't be live when 5.4.8 drops) it feels as if valor itself is being made into a progression mechanic.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Raiding, Mists of Pandaria, Warlords of Draenor

Patch 5.4.8 introduces Heart of the Valorous

In addition to the Valor Point changes mentioned earlier this week, the patch 5.4.8 PTR has enabled a passive buff called Heart of the Valorous. Heart of the Valorous appears to be baseline, applied to all players upon login, and increases Valor Point accrual by 100%. Every point of valor you earn will be doubled. That includes the new Deeds of Valor, increasing its value to 200 Valor Point per 3,000 Timeless Coins.

Wowhead reports that Heart of the Valorous stacks with Valor of the Ancients. With both buffs active, a daily quest that normally awards 5 Valor Points yields 12 Valor Points instead.

Filed under: News items

Loot, points, bonus rolls, and other options

Before The Burning Crusade, there simply wasn't any other way to get gear for your character but for it to drop past a certain point. Sometimes you could buy a BoE piece on the auction house - my first epic was a Brain Hacker my wife bought me on the AH. But in general, if you wanted a piece of gear, you farmed for it. You ran dungeons over and over again, hoping a piece would drop, and hoping you would win the roll - and if neither of those things happened, you just kept running. It was possible to run the same dungeon every day, over and over again, and never get that drop you wanted - one friend of mine never completed his dungeon set, even when he was working on raiding Ahn'Qiraj, because the shoulders simply would not drop.

But during BC the Badges of Justice were devised, and for the first time players had a way to get around the luck of the draw. Over the course of the expansion, new gear was placed on vendors, gear that could be purchased for Badges, and this meant that players kept running as much content that dropped those badges as possible. It's fair to say that the badge system kept Karazhan going as a desired raiding location - people would bring their geared mains, even, just to get the extra badges. When the Isle of Quel'Danas vendor opened, all of my friends and guildmates (who were raiding TK and SSC and moving up into Hyjal and the Black Temple) picked up gear from the IoQD vendor, because it was easily as good if not slightly better as the drops we already had. It filled weak spots (those pants or boots or belt that never dropped) or provided us with weapons absolutely as good as drops we hadn't even seen yet.

The badge system got ever more complex in Wrath, with each new raid tier also seeing the debut of a new type of badge and new gear that badge could be spent on. As a result, the two tiered point system (justice and valor points, honor and conquest points for PvP) was introduced in Cataclysm (technically, during the tail end of Wrath) to simplify everything. It worked, to a point. Now, in Mists of Pandaria, we've seen justice and valor points be superseded by the bonus roll mechanic, one that will be revamped in Warlords of Draenor. One could argue that the bonus roll system puts the emphasis back on whether or not an item drops as opposed to simply collecting points to buy an item - it removes the certainty of reaching enough points to make a purchase, as well.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, The Burning Crusade, Wrath of the Lich King, Cataclysm, Mists of Pandaria, Warlords of Draenor

Wowhead interviews Lead Game Designer Ion Hazzikostas

Warlords of Draenor is bringing some big changes to the table -- and Wowhead recently interviewed Lead Game Designer Ion "Watcher" Hazzikostas about many of the changes we'll be seeing in regards to raiding, valor, and more. Item upgrades will be going away entirely, and with them, the valor point system seems to be attracting a shift in purpose, although that shift hasn't quite been decided just yet. However, the incentive mentioned during last year's BlizzCon that rewarded players with extra valor for grouping is undergoing a revamp, as valor currently isn't as useful as it has been in the past.

Also interesting to note are the design changes for gear rewards. For the past several expansions, gear obtained from varying levels of difficulty in raids has always been the same model, simply different colors. In Warlords, this will be changed to be similar to what we saw in Burning Crusade -- PvP and PvE gear will share similar models, and the color shift will denote whether the armor was obtained in PvE, or PvP. Raid gear will go back to having different artwork, depending on the difficulty of the content completed -- so players that have defeated the most difficult content will have the snazzy gear to show for it.

While Garrisons are going to be a huge piece of playable content, Hazzikostas pointed out that the feature is in no way mandatory -- the feature is not meant to feel like dailies in any way, and there won't be any sense of obligation to work on them on a daily basis. For those that have waded their way through the daily system introduced in Mists, that should be a relief to hear. Check out the full interview above for more from Hazzikostas -- and keep an eye on Wowhead for a full transcript of the interview soon.

Filed under: Interviews, Warlords of Draenor

Item upgrading disabled in Patch 6.0

If you have items you haven't upgraded yet, you should know that item upgrading is going away as of patch 6.0 - any items you have already upgraded will remain so, but you won't be able to upgrade any new items once the patch drops. So if you've been lax, like I have lately, it's time to get serious about your valor points and get everything upgraded before that time.

Honestly, I'm not really all that sad about losing valor upgrading - it lately felt like that was all you could do with the points anyway. So I won't miss it that much. It would be nice if they added something to do with valor points once 6.0 drops - I'm always a sucker for cosmetic items, hint hint.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Mists of Pandaria, Warlords of Draenor

WoW Archivist: Warlords of Draenor hates The Burning Crusade

Draining a naaru
WoW Archivist explores the secrets of World of Warcraft's past. What did the game look like years ago? Who is etched into WoW's history? What secrets does the game still hold?

In many ways, The Burning Crusade was the birth of modern WoW. Most of TBC's innovations are still going strong in WoW today and have been ever since their introduction. Looking back, it's striking how many key features of WoW were absent in classic, only unveiled during the game's first expansion.

Even more striking, however, is how many of these innovations Warlords of Draenor seems poised to undo. Just as Garrosh will undo the transformation of Draenor into Outland, Warlords seeks to unravel most of what Blizzard innovated during TBC. The next expansion will take us through a portal into a very different WoW.

Archivist has now covered all the major patches of The Burning Crusade: patch 2.0.1, patch 2.0.3, patch 2.1, patch 2.2, patch 2.3, and patch 2.4. Now it's time to review the expansion as a whole -- and explore how Warlords will make most of TBC's innovations disappear into the nether.

Dawn of the quest hub

The idea seems so obvious it's hard to imagine that classic WoW actually didn't have quest hubs, at least not in the strict sense. WoW was the first MMO to promote the idea of leveling mainly through quests rather than grinding mobs. So Blizzard had no model to look at when they were designing the original quests.

In classic WoW, quests were put into the game wherever the developers thought they made sense, mostly from a lore perspective. Quests didn't necessarily guide you through a zone area by area. Quests were scattered, and their objectives were, too. They weren't breadcrumbs -- they were meant to be discovered. They didn't hold your hand -- they sent you on an adventure, like it or not.

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Filed under: WoW Archivist

Poll: RNG gearing or points-based gearing?

There seems to have been something of a shift of late in Blizzard's gearing philosophy. We've moved from a heavily points-based system, where players had to earn currency -- specifically valor -- to buy items. They also had to earn reputation, which was another thing we can compare to points, although they're not a currency you can spend. Now, we've got Valor only used as an upgrade system, players are reliant on drops for the initial item to upgrade. The Timeless Isle does award currency, but you're more likely to rely on RNG-based drops to get gear from there. Not to mention the RNG nature of Warforged gear.

And it looks like this is only going to move more towards RNG with Warlords' removal of currencies, removal of reforging, and the addition of sockets and tertiaries as RNG elements on top of the Warforged system. PvP gear remains mercifully points-based, and in a play system where gear equality is so important, we can only hope it remains the case. But in PvE, what's the good and bad of each?

Well, points-based gearing is predictable. It gives you certainty and goals to work towards. Just so long as you keep grinding points, you know categorically that you will get that piece of gear. You can see your points build up, and it's satisfying. On the downside that predictability makes it less exciting. In PvP, that's no bad thing -- you certainly don't want the opposition to get their weapon and 4-set first while you get 2 rings, a neck and some bracers!

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Warlords of Draenor

The struggle between gear disparity and good play

Okay, truth time - I can solo any five player heroic dungeon in Mists of Pandaria, as long as it doesn't have mechanics that prevent me. If I'm even concerned that I'll take too much damage and die, I'll pop on my tank set and go prot, but many times it isn't even a concern. Blow all my DPS cooldowns, blow my defensive cooldowns when I'm at about half health, boss falls over. Done it in Mogu'shan Palace and Scarlet Monastery. And I'm hardly the exception here - the fact is, the Mists of Pandaria dungeons were introduced at the beginning of the expansion and tuned so that players in ilevel 450 gear could complete them.

I'm at around ilevel 576.

Even players who are just in flex or LFR gear out gear these instances immensely. If a DPS player in full SoO LFR gear goes into Mogu'shan Palace and decides to pull more mobs than the tank was ready or waiting for, he or she can probably DPS them all down before dying themselves, especially if they get a few heals. Meanwhile, even the tanks can often put out enough damage (while taking so very little and having various means to heal it up) that they can basically solo the whole place if they want to, leaving absolutely everyone in the group feeling very little need to actually play as a group. As many, many people point out to me on twitter, it's just assumed that everyone is going to pull like crazy, so even undergeared players in a specific role often assume it's going to happen and react. Maybe your tank doesn't want to pull like a fiend, but they saw your gear and thought they had to in order to keep control of the dungeon. The lines of group communication have broken down into a silence that masks intent - runs are zoned into and pulled with grim efficiency.

Into this veil of silence enters you, the player. So what can be done about it?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Wrath of the Lich King, Cataclysm, Mists of Pandaria

Proving Grounds will not solve the real problem

Olivia Grace wrote an excellent post last week about the upcoming change that will link a silver performance in Proving Grounds to the ability to queue for heroic dungeons. You should definitely go read it, because I cheerfully cede to her points. It's not hard to get silver in proving grounds. Linking a silver performance to heroic dungeons will allow them to make heroics more challenging. These are all good things.

Now I'm going to say something - the biggest problem in heroics isn't players who don't know what they're doing. It's players who do. Specifically, it's skilled and geared players who massively, massively out-gear said heroics and want to ignore the mechanics and chain pull every mob in the place, players who are completely inconsiderate of the other players in their group. Players who are skilled, but who let their fevered egocentric natures run wild, hurling insults at lesser geared players for 'not keeping up.' Players who make the dungeon an unpleasant festival of wipes because they refuse to understand that some of the people in the dungeon are only just geared enough to be there, and can't heal through thirty mobs hitting them at once or kill those thirty mobs fast enough.

It's players who have a really well geared main, but come to the Scarlet Monastery Cathedral on their brand new monk and refuse to understand that they're not nearly as powerful now. It's not skill, it's attitude.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, Warlords of Draenor

Simplify point-based currencies in Warlords

We've covered in the past how the best way to gear for PvP is to grind justice points, and I have recently experienced this - since I wanted to get some pieces of Season 14 for transmog (and to do some PvP on the side, since I like running random BG's) I spent the past couple of days capping honor so that I could pick up several pieces as soon as possible. This led to running dungeons for justice points. Lots of dungeons. And this led me to realize that justice points themselves have a lot of uses - picking up older gear to catch up, converting to honor for PvP gear - but they feel strange and antiquated.

There's literally two ways to get them in the current endgame - run scenarios or dungeons - and they only upgrade blue dungeon gear, so their use as an upgrade currency is fairly limited. While you can in fact also buy them with honor, that would have been self defeating in my case.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Raiding, Warlords of Draenor

The Queue: Features, deletions, achievements, and Skittles

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Alex Ziebart will be your host today.

Today's Queue kicks off with a question all of you might enjoy answering, too. While you're answering that, listen to William Close play his earth harp.

Joe32 asked:

What's your favorite expansion in terms of added features, not game play? For example, WoTLK - dungeon finder, dual spec; Cata - transmog, reforging, LFR; MoP - flex, scenarios. I probably got a few of those wrong but you get the idea.

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Filed under: The Queue

Patch 5.4 will not reset valor points

Patch 54 will not reset valor points
The good news about patch 5.4 just keeps on coming! Not only are we getting a plethora of new content and exciting changes, as well as a new raid which also comes in a whole new difficulty, but on top of all of that there is no valor reset coming!

That's right, just like in patch 5.2, you will get to keep hold of your hard-earned valor despite the fact that there is a new raid coming. While there's no valor gear coming in patch 5.4 as such, you can use the valor to upgrade existing or new gear drops, so as Ghostcrawler said in his recent interview with Twizzcast, "Players who want to stockpile their 3,000 Valor before Patch 5.4 hits will be able to do that, and probably should start thinking about that".

It will be interesting to see how the absence of valor gear works out. Of course, there was a time when badge gear didn't exist at all, and players were at the mercy of the RNG gods, but we have become accustomed to it, and it's all well and good being able to upgrade gear, as long as you can get that gear in the first place.

Filed under: Mists of Pandaria

The Queue: I am the one who rings

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Alex Ziebart will be your host today.

Raise your hand if you've spent the last few years being woken up in the middle of the night by phantom doorbell noises.

Anybody? No? Just me? Crap.

HerrKlokbok asked:

I'm seeing a lot of Emerald Dream hopes now, with the breaking news of "the Dark Below". I'm curious - just why do so many want a Emerald Dream expansion? I can't find anyhing remotely interesting with such a surreal thing, but I guess that's me- But is it a veteran- or vanilla-players dream expansion, or what? I started WoW late BC, maybe that's why I can't find the kick in it.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Queue

Valor-capping a realm's worth of 90s every single week

Altaholic valorcaps realmful of level 90s every single week
And you thought the guy with 50 level 85+ characters was crazy.

Last week, we met a player who's packed his entire account (five realms and 50 character slots, all told) with level 85+ characters. This week, we visit yet another plane of insanity: a player who's valor-capped every character on a realm (11 level 90 characters) in a single week -– more specifically, every single week, because Bluespartan of Lightbringer (US) has been valor-capping his entire crew like clockwork every week for the last four weeks in a row.

"Didn't really set out to do it, but with the changes to patch 5.3, it became viable despite working full time," he muses. "Under the pre-5.3 options for capping valor on the first toon, I would have run one heroic dungeon and one normal scenario for 80 + 50 valor. But now, a single heroic scenario gives about the same valor as both of those, plus better gear rewards."

Is this the dawning of the Age of the Altaholic? Maybe it's the fact that both of these altaholic players play characters named with forms of the word "blue." Or maybe it's just that Bluespartan is a college math teacher and enjoys figuring out a formula for success. Whatever it is, let's take a look inside the week of the player who just might be WoW's reigning King of Valor.

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Filed under: Interviews, 15 Minutes of Fame

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