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Ask a Beta Tester: Wintergrasp and caster stats


Let's start out with the PvP zone that's on everyone's mind: Lake Wintergrasp. Added in the last beta patch, Wintergrasp doesn't seem all there, but Alex has boldly ventured into the zone in an attempt to tell the rest of us about the zone.

Boowat asked....

How does Lake Wintergrasp PvP actually work in regards to siege weapons etc. do i just go round running people over or driving into the side of buildings?

Alex: Very little of Lake Wintergrasp is actually implemented. Right now it is more or less a sandbox with tonka trucks in it, except you can climb in the trucks and they can shoot missiles and throw rocks. Each of the vehicles has a set of abilities that come up like if you mind controlled something. Your action bar changes to their action bar. They have anywhere from 1 to 4 abilities. Some of them can cause Siege Damage to structures, some can't. The tanks are heavy siege damage, the planes have some light siege damage, and the shredders are mostly for wtfpwning players.

For more of your questions -- and our answers! -- read on! But if you're the sort who wants to avoid spoilers, turn back now. We're aiming to avoid major story spoilers, but this feature is all about beta content and we can't talk about the beta without giving a few things away.

For those of you with additional questions on the blacksmithing sockets, we have some additional answers courtesy of commenters ninjasuperspy and Eldacar.

Eldacar lets us know that the Titanium Belt Buckle pattern is now working perfectly since the latest beta patch last night. It adds an uncolored socket slot and a note stating, "Requires UNKNOWN." And ninjasuperspy points us towards this professions thread at Elitist Jerks (scroll down -- blacksmithing is at the bottom) which clarifies (with screenshot!) that you can both add a socket and enchant an item. (Except for belts, of course, for which there are no existing enchants.)

Whiplashmtb asked....

With the new hunter pet changes, are there still going to be Hunter Pets with "caster" stats?

I asked Daniel, one of our resident Hunter experts, about this one. He informed me that caster stats should be gone from pets. Mania informs us that there are still pets with caster stats in the beta right now, Blizzard has indicated that these will be fixed (presumably removed) at some point in the future.

wrez asked....

Have they made any changes the way fishing is leveled? Every other profession, be it primary or secondary, requires you to level it by performing more "difficult" tasks as you progress; be it the skinning of higher level mobs, cooking more fulfilling dishes, etc. It doesn't make any sense to become a Bassmaster by repeatedly plucking minnows out of the wading pool.

I'm afraid I don't have a complete answer for you. Up until last night's beta patch, you couldn't fish anywhere in Northrend or catch any new fish. However, there does not seem to be a Grand Master level trainer or book in the game at this point to raise people's skill level in the game yet. (A maxxed out fisherman... fisherperson?... has to toss on all of their +fishing gear and use some good bait to fish in the ponds in Dalaran.) This doesn't answer your question, but it is all we know about fishing from the beta realms. No changes have been announced or made, but right now fishing is only half-implemented, at best.

Updated: to make this answer make some sort of sense.

Ponnicus asked....
One question I have been wondering is in regards to bonus healing -> spell power. Can we get some real world numbers of what your bonus healing was compared to what your spell power is now?

I have a couple of healing characters on the live and beta realms. On the live realms, my Priest has 2012 healing. On the beta realms, 1078 healing. On the live realms, my Paladin has 1883 healing. On the beta realms, 1096 healing. (I'm as puzzled as you over how my Paladin has managed to overtake my Priest in the healing department. With the new spell power stat, some of my gear has been shuffled, but not that much.)

Spell damage converts to spell power on about a one to one ratio, but spell healing converts to spell power on closer to a 2 to 1 ratio -- but don't get too worked up over the lower numbers

Just looking at the itemization it seems like it will be roughly half. If that's the case, my bonus damage is roughly 1/3 of that today (around 700). Could this mean my lowly priest might be doing more damage when soloing?

For healers collecting a set of healing gear (for instances) and damage gear (for soloing), this will almost certainly result in an improvement of your damage -- without the need to carry around an extra set of gear.

We had a couple of questions about AoE grinding spots from muxecoid and Evan, which basically amounted to....

Are there any good spots for AoE leveling between 70 and 77?

Zach recommends Zul'drak as an awesome place to farm, AoE-style. "The Undead are all so clumped together, especially east of Ebon Watch." Alex suggests that in the Howling Fjord at Valgarde and the Horde outpost above Vengeance Landing, they're under siege from an endlessly respawning stream of Valkyr. They award XP and they're pretty weak. As for level 80 money-grinding stuff, that'll probaby be something in Icecrown or Storm Peaks- level 78-80 mobs, but those zones aren't in the game yet.

andyjay220 asked....

Is there any indication that Protection Paladins will be more effective offtanks?

Paladins are in a tough spot for off-tanking because so much of their damage (and thus threat) is reflective (i.e. they generate threat by having things smack them over the head). Not to mention the mana issues a Paladin runs into when they aren't main tanking (they get mana back from being healed via Spiritual Attunement, but limited healing happens when ou're off-tanking, which means limited mana which means limited threat). Alex and Zach both suggest that Shield of Righteousness will help in the threat department (depending on itemization and the ability to stack shield block to make Shield of Righteousness hit harder), but Alex says, "I don't think it will be enough." There's nothing that currently addresses a Protection Paladin's mana problems when they aren't main tanking -- other than the ability to swig mana potions constantly. (And depending on what happens to Potion Sickness, that may not be an option.

However, with Blizzard's recent announcement that all tanking classes should be viable in all tanking situations, perhaps Shield of Righteousness is the beginning of more changes that will help Paladins function better as off-tanks.

The Wrath of the Lich King beta is in full swing, and the WoW Insider crew is here to sate your curiosity with Ask a Beta Tester! Leave your beta questions in the comments and we'll do our best to answer 'em! And if you can't get enough Wrath, don't forget to check WoW Insider's Wrath Roundup page for anything we haven't answered here!

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