We'll be blogging the Raids and Dungeons panel live from the floor of BlizzCon, which should prove to be awesome. Full updates will be behind the break, so make sure you keep up! It will be starting in just a moment.
12:59PM Panel is over! Thanks for reading!
12:58PM Q: "Can you mix teir bonuses from old sets, like tier 2 and 3?" A: "I don't like to see that. If you feel compelled to actually wear gear that is 5 years old, that's a sign something is messed up."
12:57PM Q: "Is there a story line for Ashbringer? What is happening to the old Naxx legendary items?" A: "Get your old naxx items within the next two days, because then they're gone." Lots of boos at that.
12:56PM Q: "Will there be a Sunwell version of Wrath where only the top end guilds defeat the encounters?" A: "Naxx is going to be blown through by the top end guilds. Will there be a raid at the end that only the top of 1% will be able to beat? No, I hope not. I want a raid that is more accessible than SWP was."
12:55PM Q: "When do you think top ends guild will have beaten the xpac?" Crowd yells "Two weeks!" Real answer: "Less than that. The expansion won't be done until you take your sword out of Arthas' Chest."
12:54PM Q: "Are you going to keep dropping tokens? Any way to help when one token won't drop?" A: "We're dropping more loot from bosses, so that should help. We're not looking at dropping one of each token. What we did do to help this is allow the purchase of tokens with badges. I think you can buy the shoulders and chest [with tokens]."
12:52PM Additional answer: "We want to create an epic five-man eventually. [Creating larger dungeons] is definitely something we're looking at doing in the future." Crowd applauds at that. It appears this crowd is filled with some "hard core" raiders.
12:51PM Q: "The dungeon design in BC was different from classic because there are no super dungeons like BRS. Going to do anything like in DM where you could go from wing to wing via passages and not have to go outside the instance?" A: "Great question, that's something we think of often."
12:49PM The crowd appreciated the presentation. But they're not enjoying the answers coming out of the Q&A session. A lot of grumbling around me about "not having a raid as difficult as SWP." A guy just told the devs: "I think you're wrong, btw." Next guy up says "Kil'Jaden is a wonderful encounter, thanks for that by the way." Lots of applause.
12:47PM Q: "UBRS was truly puggable. If you were a new player it helped bridge the gap. Kara really missed that. Is there a plan for 10-man raids that have no lockout or a shorter lockout?" A: "The issue of a lockout is due to items. If there is no lockout, we can't give as good of rewards in the dungeon. It's something we've discussed and we might do in the future. But for right now, no."
12:46PM More A: "We don't want to push the players too far. We don't want to push them to things that are negative to their guild."
12:45PM Q: "In BC after HKM and Mag was fixed, things wrapped up in SWP which is hard. Naxx is easy. Going to be a SWP difficulty level raid in WotLk?" A: "You'll see more difficult encounters as you go on. We won't get to the level of difficulty of SWP."
12:43PM Q: "Can hunters tank a 5 man with my pet?" LOTS of boos. A: "Goal is for any defense specd pet to be able to OT, not MT."
12:42PM Q: "What are you planning to do with keys in WotLK?" A: "You have to be level 80." Pause. Boos. Crowd wants keys. Additional answer: "But with Malygos you have to get a thing from Naxx, so that's like a key."
12:41PM Additional note: Badges can be used to purchase additional set pieces to help fill out sets.
12:40PM Q: "As a moonkin you solved a lot of gear problems, but now 70% of the raid is going to be rolling on my caster weapon. Going to solve this so we don't have to see the same weapon drop 30 times?" A: "You should see the same proportions of caster and melee weapons drop." They didn't really answer the question in my opinion.
12:39PM Q: "Going to open up Uldum and the other dungeons?" A: "They haven't falled off the map. They just need to fit with the story we're telling. We've got this huge queue of dungeons we can choose from." More answers: "The plan right now is no."
12:37PM Q: "Whats going to happen with legendaries?" A: "Time for caster legendaries again...don't want to do random drops. Like the old Naxx way of doing legendaries."
12:36PM Q: "People fall asleep at night while raiding. We're screwed until they DC completely and are forced to zone out. Any way raid leaders can force people out?" Crowd ERUPTS in applause. A: "It's something we've looekd at." Doesn't look like they're going to do it, despite the fan approval.
12:35PM All done with the main part. Now Q&A.
12:35PM Any ratio of 10-man sets and 25-man sets will allow the set of gear to be completed, and you'll get the set bonus. Ie: 2 pieces from 10-man naxx and 2 pieces from 25-man naxx will give you a 4 piece bonus.
12:34PM They also wanted to address the way the badges play out in WotLK. They wanted to give incentives to get better rewards - hence the multiple new badge types. We already knew this, but nice to hear the thought process.
12:32PM We'll see loot that is "flat out better" than what normal 80 dungeons give. More applause.
12:32PM "In WotLK we decided to take the heroic dungeons up a tier from the level 80 dungeons." Lots of applause at that.
12:32PM "One of the things we didn't really like the feel of was the way heroic dungeons played out as far as itemization is concerned."
12:31PM Next up is itemization in WotLK.
12:31PM All done with EoE. Even though the demo messed up, some good footage we'll get you soon.
12:31PM Demo is bugged. Apparently being a GM in the raid instance made it not work right.
12:30PM They had a "Design Menu" that they pulled down and made themselves no longer invincible.
12:29PM We just got a look at the developer view of WoW!
12:29PM EoE is a great looking space area. You're on a platform in space. Looks a lot like StarCraft, in some ways. Nothing new here either, we've seen all these screenshots before.
12:28PM Eye of Eternity is the home of Malygos, Aspect of Magic.
12:27PM All done with CoA. Next up is Eye of Eternity.
12:27PM They're not expecting people to get the twilight drake mount from the hard version of this until a patch or so after release. "But you guys are smart, so I'm sure you'll find a way."
12:26PM The hard way is to not kill the twilight drake (the sub-bosses), and just kill the main dragon. Nothing new again, but nice to see this.
12:26PM Main boss is a black dragon, and the sub-bosses are also there. The sub-bosses will drop a badge only, no other loot. Kill the main dragon for all the loot.
12:25PM Lots of great red and black lava going around.
12:25PM Looking at CoA now. It's a huge outdoor area with the feel of MC and Blasted Lands.
12:24PM Learned a lot from ZA too - they want to continue to keep that challenge format where both low-geared raiders and high-geared raiders want to run it.
12:24PM CoA is an intro to raiding. They made a mistake in that Grull and Mag was really really hard when they came out. "You went into these rooms and you got your ass kicked."
12:23PM First raid dungeon up is Chamber of the Aspects.
12:23PM Going over already known material... 10 & 25 person versions, everyone can raid depending on your social situation you have (ie: how many people you can get to raid with you).
12:22PM All done with Ak. Next up - raid zones. Everyone is applauding. Getting loud.
12:22PM If you're an elemental shaman, you'll fight a elemental shaman in the mirror world.
12:21PM Think of this mechanic as a modified version of Leotharas the Blind in SSC.
12:21PM This boss send you eventually into the shadow world - where mirror images of your party kill you for a time.
12:20PM The final boss of Ak is in a big room near the top - grand on the scale of the dwarves in LotR. The final boss is a faseless one.
12:19PM "Vampire lore with the Blood Prince boss in Ak."
12:17PM Lots of great looking buildings. The buildings are heavily influenced by original naxx art style, since KT pulled Naxx out of these buildings. Interesting.
12:16PM Back to the live gameplay in GM view of Ak. For those of you that haven't been to the dungeon yet, think of the imagery given to us by Salvatore in his Dark Elf series of books.
12:16PM The goal of Ak will be to help tell part of the story of Northrend.
12:15PM Ak is underground, and is using new technology that makes the dungeon itself be completely in a cave. It mixes both indoor and outdoor spaces in a way that hasn't been done before.
12:15PM Ak will re-introduce the faceless ones.
12:14PM Old gods will be an ongoing story in Northrend. First old god was C'Thun, and there will be more.
12:14PM Next up. Ahn'kahet: The Old Kingdom.
12:14PM Done with HoL. Crowd starts clapping and really likes the instance.
12:13PM They're able to do very custom mini-cinematics, like those near Loken in Halls of Lightening. Check it out in the beta if you haven't already - very cool and very deep in lore. Lots of moving lights and patterns, and lots of characters.
12:12PM And BWL.
12:12PM They also want to allow people to see the outdoors from dungeons. He's talking like it's new... but we've seen this since Kara...
12:11PM They were pushing tons of custom models for WotLK. Ie: things that look unique. Crowd is happy and applauds. Lots of agreement from the people around me.
12:11PM Now they're talking about the constellations in the Halls of Lightning. "Crazy constellation statues." They have them there to help breakup the dungeon and make it unique.
12:10PM They want to give the impression that everything is very scary and show the bosses before you hit them. They want to give you a sense that this is an epic place.
12:09PM Yup, a GM view. They're moving the in-game camera around the entire dungeon at will, looking at everything.
12:09PM They'll be running us through the Halls of Lightning now, showing gameplay footage. Very neat view. Perhaps a special GM mode?
12:08PM Moved up and sitting right next to the stage now. Audio problem solved.
12:06PM Talking about Halls of Lightning now. It's a five player dungeon located in the Storm Peaks. Still can't really hear them talk. People beside me are frowning.
12:04PM They need to fix the audio. People can't hear!
12:03PM Okay. Live blog is setup! And the panel is starting. Lots of applause.
12:01PM Test live blog entry. This is only a test.