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Blue Posts: 48 more Blizzard responses to MoP issues


Join us every weekday evening as Today in WoW runs down all the WoW news that you could possibly want. From comments from Blizzard's blues to the latest datamining info -- we've got you covered.

Zarhym is just taking over everything lately. Where is the floating skull going to end up next? Thanks to Mat McCurley for pointing out Zarhym's One Life to Live usurping.

Don't forget to check out The Daily Quest and our Weekly Podcast Roundup to find out what else is going on in the WoW community. And if you have a news tip, feel free to drop us a line and let us know.

Blue posts

Zarhym -- Responses to MoP QQ

talking with allot of fellow Pver's and there has been allot of talk that blizz is going to reduce the amount of pve in the next expansion...

We've never quantified the amount of content coming in Mists of Pandaria, much less stated we plan to produce less content in the next expansion than we have in previous expansions. We've mentioned adding a few PvE gameplay elements in Mists.


wow gear with no stats to make players equal

No, the point of gear with no stats is not to make players equal. IN ADDITION to the PvE gear progression you typically see in dungeon and raid tiers, in Mists we're adding PvE Challenges to award cosmetic-only sets. These sets aren't meant to replace items/sets from dungeons and raids that increase your character's power. They're meant to be hard to get, entirely optional, and another way for characters to distinguish themselves from others through their accomplishments.


a tree that my kids could pick out

I'm sure your kid could press buttons and make a talent build under the current system too. That doesn't mean it's going to be optimal, or even viable. This type of feedback isn't very interesting or useful.


cant we all agree that its the strive to be the best and or to be better is what Really keeps us playing this game? if it comes to be and i bust my a** and at the end of the day im not any better then the 8 year old that started playing yesterday, i will Stop playing this game! along with many other people...

My primary goal when logging into World of Warcraft isn't to be the best. If by better, you mean acquiring more powerful items or higher character levels, I guess that's part of the drive. That's not being stripped from PvE in Mists of Pandaria, contrary to the talks in which you've been involved.


on that note there has also been talk of a world of warcraft 2, hmm now this sounds like a good idea with a great focus on PvE wouldnt this help solve everyones PvP / PvE problems?

I'm not sure I understand how the solution to the fabricated problem of a lack of PvE content -- in an expansion you haven't played yet -- is to make a completely new game. We're focused on developing additional expansion content for World of Warcraft, not designing a sequel to the first title.


there has been so much lore that has been skipped the possibilites for this could be endless

We don't really see it as much of a problem that we have a lot of story at our disposal to use in developing new content. But we also don't need to reinvent the game to explore that lore.



Nonetheless, Zarhym, isn't the entire point of the MoP talent system that, for most practical purposes, optimal or viable specs will no longer exist? Shouldn't this hypothetical "kid" be ideally able to randomly press buttons and come up with a viable talent load-out which only differs from others in subjective "fun value"?

Sort of. I wasn't really interested in entertaining the OP's argument though, because the kid* who blindly chooses a potentially viable build isn't going to blindly know how to play the class well.

*Referring to the usage of the word in the OP's post, which I presume is defined as someone who should be too young to figure out how a WoW class is successfully played.



So the idea behind players being rewarded based on the efforts is basically being tossed to the side now? It at least appears that way with features like LFR which allows players to go afk and intentionally leach off of other players and collect rewards that improve their "power", while the new challenge modes which require effort from each individual player working together as a team just rewards cosmetic rewards.

You make this claim as though the Raid Finder is synonymous with Heroic raids, in terms of providing the highest quality gear in the game. That's not the case. Even with Raid Finder and PvE Challenges in Mists of Pandaria, the best sets in the game (stat-wise) will still be rather difficult to obtain.


Just one of the factors that has players dismayed at the direction the developers are taking the game.

You'd have a really hard time arguing your last sentence on behalf of the entire playerbase. I could argue there are players who are dismayed right now that Peddlefeet's butt isn't as firm as it should be. Is that a larger argument about "the direction the developers are taking the game"?



If you weren't interested in his argument, maybe responding to it was a bad idea? Just sayin.

I took eight of his words and said they didn't make for an interesting argument. No, I don't think it was a bad idea to address the other points of the OP just because I didn't find his "my kid could do it" argument interesting.

And you're not saying, you're asking (though surely I'm to assume it's rhetorical). And why does everyone need to follow up saying something with "just sayin" these days? I know you're just sayin'. You just said it!

^ I just typed and posted those words right up there.



I dunno, I think squelching far out rumors is a reasonable use of time. I think people put too much stock into what blues do or do not respond to. A response in one thread doesn't mean no one's paying attention in another.


Your reason overwhelms my heart.



You are correct that the sarcasm in the original post doesnt help. Still that doesnt negate the fact developers have cut down the creative and fun part of the talent trees. A lot of player enjoyed having a lot of talents (which could be put in ANY tree). I liked to spend time on the talent calculator knit picking each talent to see what i could build. There should be nothing wrong with having a "best spec". What should be the goal is to create a system where there could be multiple best specs for each of the three trees.

I like the idea of selecting one of three abilities. Why not just make that an option within the old system. For example, reaching to the 3rd tier and have to select 1 of three abilities.

It's a fair argument and we do appreciate the feedback. Our hope, however, is that you'll get a better feel for why we're going the direction we're going once beta is out and a bigger picture of class design is accessible.



It's sad that BLizzard would give a detailed response to this borderline incoherent post, while ignoring many more well thought out and articulated posts regarding more specific parts of the game. Especially when this guy clearly does not represent even a minority of peoples opinions, it's just senseless drivel.

The world would surely be a better place if only I'd perform my job according to the wants and needs you determine. :p



The nice, coherent, well thought out posts are hopefully just send off to HQ with a nice email saying that there's some good info in them. The blues don't post in them to keep the discussion from being derailed.

At least, that's how I think/hope it works.

In many cases it does. We're fairly constantly passing threads around via email with developers, taking questions we see on the forums to developer meetings, etc.

There are some subjects we just can't talk a lot about at certain times, like... say, a month before an expansion's major press tour is going to happen. :)

Kaivax -- MoP buffs
At this point in the development cycle, there hasn't yet been a finish put on buffs. As we've said elsewhere, we wanted to get the talent calculator updated sooner, rather than wait around for more details on related subjects to be fully developed.

We're considering publishing a developer's blog on the subject of buffs as quickly as we can.

Kaivax -- MoP talent clarifications
Mostly taken from --

Question: What is "base mana regeneration"? How does mana regen work for casters (or mages)?
Answer: Healers get a significant amount of mana regeneration from Spirit, even during combat. Additionally, all mana users have a small amount of mana regeneration -- currently about 1% of maximum mana per second. With Invocation, that 1%/sec is removed. Things like Innervate will still allow you to regenerate mana, but you won't passively regenerate any with Invocation.

Question: What is the range for Alter time concerning the "moves too far away" part?
Answer: 100 yards. It's mostly just to indicate that it won't reverse taking a portal to Dalaran or something.

Question: Is AM a proc?
Answer: Yes, Arcane Missiles is still activated via a proc from your other direct damage spells.

Question: Does Arcane Bomb have a target limit?
Answer: Currently, no. We're hoping it won't be needed.



A couple of Tanking concerns I have off the top of my head.

1. AE tanking, with all of our rage being poured into mitigation, this limits the usage of dps rage cost moves (as mentioned).
Cleave has too high of a rage cost and revenge/shockwave have 9/20 second cooldowns respectively. Thunder clap is therefore the go-to move for AE, yet it costs 20 rage (which will heavily impact our survivability if we use it more than maintaining its 30 second debuff). This may very well be by design, but its a concern, traditionally threat is hardest to maintain for warriors, how will this carry forward in MOP?

Thunder Clap is free for Protection warriors, and it applies a dot.

Shield Slam and auto attack to generate rage for Shield Block.

Most other offensive attacks are free (for Protection), except for Heroic Strike and Cleave, which are intended to be used only in times of excess rage (which should be less common than today, but still occur with reasonable frequency).

Improving tanking rotations is always challenging. If tanks have too many abilities to manage, then they are overwhelmed in fights that require a lot of boss positioning or add management. If tanks have too few abilities or a very simplified resource, then they get bored on single-target boss fights with limited movement.

Part of our design intent is to have tank resources tie into survivability instead of threat, since we (and tanks) place more emphasis on the former.



-Spirit shell: How long will it last? No tooltip. this one will be the replacement for PW:S?

The intent of Spirit Shell is to provide a frequent-use absorb that recreates some of the gameplay where Disc priests put absorbs on lots of their teammates. This was a style many Disc priests told us they enjoyed, but was difficult to balance with Power Word: Shield (since PW:S is instant).

At this point, think of Spirit Shell as Heal and Power Word: Shield as Flash Heal.



Does that mean holy priests will be glyphing for evangelism so they can make use of the archangel talent? Current that talent has no purpose for holy priests, and I was under the impression that talents were no longer spec dependent.

Evangelism is a spec spell for both Holy and Disc (at least for the moment – things could still change). The talent calculator appears to be incorrect on this.

Shadow has Dark Evangelism.


Question-that's-actually-an-exclamation: But we loved Corpse Explosion!

Answer: Yes. You do. So do we. Unfortunately, requiring a corpse felt like too steep a requirement for a competitive talent. We would like to still add Corpse Explosion in some form as a glyph. In the meantime, hey presto! - Unholy Blight is back.


Question: Does Holy Insight mean Intellect plate is going away?

Answer: No. That passive (and appropriate classes should have an equivalent) gives casters larger mana pools than non-casters of the same class. Mana no longer increases with Intellect, but we still want to make sure that, for example, a Holy paladin can cast more heals than a Retribution paladin.



If it works like Dark Simulcrum - the new ability will overwrite Symbiosis on your action bar

Here's the process:
  • The Druid will select a raid or party member and cast Symbiosis on them.
  • The target cannot be another Druid.
  • The target gains a buff that tells them what spell they have temporarily learned, and that spell temporarily appears in their spellbook, and they can drag it to an action bar.
  • The Druid's Symbiosis button will become the ability they gained from the target class.
  • The Symbiosis link is cancelled if: the Druid clicks off the Symbiosis buff, or the Druid or the target changes continents or enters or exits an instance, or the Druid or the target changes talent specializations.
  • Symbiosis fails to cast if Symbiosis is already active on that target.
  • Symbiosis cannot be cast in combat.
  • For the non-Druid target, the icon will revert to a placeholder (uncastable) Symbiosis icon when Symbiosis ends, but will become the Symbiosis-granted ability again the next time Symbiosis is cast on that target.
  • The ability gained from Symbiosis is always something chosen to match the Druid's specialization and the target's combat role.
  • The target always gets the same spell unless they change combat roles. A Druid of a given specialization always gets the same spell from each different class. If there is a change of specs, there is a change of spell.
  • Here are some examples of spells gained through Symbiosis. The spells shared focus on utility, cooldowns, and survival. (Adding Fireball to a Moonkin's rotation sounds cool on paper, but wouldn't actually be fun in the long run.)
Balance: Chains of Ice, Mirror Image, Mass Dispel
Feral: Feign Death (Play Dead!), Frost Nova, Soul Swap
Guardian: Ice Trap, Fear Ward, Consecration
Restoration: Ice Block, Hand of Sacrifice, Leap of Faith
Hunter: Dash
Warlock: Rejuvenation
Holy Paladin: Rebirth
Arms/Fury Warrior: Enrage
Enhancement/Elemental Shaman: Solar Beam

There are a lot more coming, but we'll keep some surprises for now, and many are still subject to change after testing.*

*Including all of those just listed.



I just want to say that I'm really really excited about the talent/spec stuff for warlocks. I feel we have gotten such a cool set of updates. My favorite stuff (which I actually wouldn't mind seeing more of) are the talents and spec stuff that requires us to sacrifice health. In a lot of games this type of class or character can be called a "blood mage", taking health from ones self or allies do do serious damage to enemies. Making great sacrifices such as sometimes sacrificing family members (in some very lore heavy games) to wield immense power. I'm not really suggesting that we should be able to walk around org and sacrifice petty citizens for damage upgrades (all though it would make for an interesting game :-p), but I just really like that model of play/class.

So things like the talents that take health to achieve certain things, or like the destro mastery, these are REALLY REALLY cool and are imo the exact thing for warlocks. Life tap is a no brainer. Please do keep these around, and I'm always welcoming of more of these ability flavors.

The only thing I was slightly bummed about was losing the "wild imps" spell as demo. I thought this was going to be a great upgrade to the feel of the demo lock. Even is malady happens to do the same amount of damage, the wild imps just has the right feeling of being able to summon armies of minions to do your bidding. Yes there are still the wild imps from BoD, but like the ebon imp and the t12 2p, they are just nothing conscious, so it doesn't feel as cool. It's just too passive for my taste. If there is any way to bring back this type of summoning pets, I would be greatly happy.

Otherwise though, I'm really really liking everything about the warlock stuff, from 4 dots (5 if you include malfic grasp) in aff, the awesome demo changes, and the stuff happening in destro, I'm more than excited.

Wild Imps has not been cut. The code for it simply wasn't ready in time for this talent calculator update. Here, I'll show it to you!

More warlock stuff for you:

Ember Tap will be received at a later level and will cost Embers.
Conflagrate has a 2.0 spell power coefficient (still working on this; subject to change).
Malady is a level 3 spell that is replaced by Immolate (Destruction) or Corruption (Demonology/Affliction).
Dark Soul is a replacement for Demon Soul based on spec. We're experimenting with the exact mechanics.
Here is what Dark Soul looks like today:




I don't see Teleport and Portal spells anywhere for mages. Should I be concerned or is this an oversight and we actually DO have it but it's not listed?

Fear not! Mages will still have all their Teleports and Portals. At this point, we decided to hide them from the talent calculator to reduce clutter.



Can we get more info regarding Mana Regen for protection paladins? From what I read, it seems the only mana regen source comes from GbtL with a passive 5% mana regen every 2 secs -- and that's it.

There are some incorrect mana costs displayed in the talent calculator for some Protection and Retribution Paladins spells right now. For example, Consecration actually costs 7% of base mana, not 22%.*

They currently are designed such that they are mana positive while doing their damage and going through their tanking rotations, and stay near full mana the whole time. Mana should not be a consideration to their rotation, rather, it will act as a limit on how much off-healing and other utility spells they can cast.

*At the moment; subject to change.



Can you answer this for us: What is being done with spell crit for DPS specs?

I notice that Boomkins and SPriests no longer get the 100% crit damage boost. Ele Shaman get only 50% boost from Elemental Fury.

Is this being done to "tone down" spell damage, or are crits going to be 2x baseline for everybody?

Basically, I want to know if this means that Enhancement Shaman and Rogues are finally getting 2x spell crits.

Our baseline assertion is that all spells and abilities will crit for double damage. There are a few exceptions to this, such as Elemental shaman getting a 2.5x crit multiplier, but the default is 2x for everyone now.

Yes, this means that Enhancement shaman spells and rogue Poisons will crit for double damage.



I don't see Teleport and Portal spells anywhere for mages. Should I be concerned or is this an oversight and we actually DO have it but it's not listed?

I am (very VERY strongly) hoping for the latter.

Don't worry -- mages will still have all their current Teleports and Portals in Mists of Pandaria. I believe we just hid them from the MoP talent calculator to reduce clutter (there's something like 30+ teleport/portal spells at present).


Question: Invisibility and Greater Invisibility say that you're "untargettable". Does that mean that we're not actually invisible anymore?

Answer: No, you still turn invisible, just it has been. It still breaks on damage. You still are completely cleared of threat when you turn invisible (either after 3sec for Invisibility, or instantly for Greater Invisibility).



BTW, Any word on the currently missing Righteous Defense? Are all tanks across the board losing a taunt?

We're currently trying a design where no tanks have AE taunts, other than Mocking Banner (which we intend to be used more as a tool to redirect streams of adds to you).



For Rune of Power if the mage has two already out will we be able to cast another one or do we have to wait till the first one is gone

Casting a third will replace the first. This is similar to how Wild Mushrooms works for druids right now.

By the way, two Runes of Power will not stack.



So does this mean that Poisons will still be on the Spell Crit table? In other words, Agility will still not affect their chance to crit?

No. Poisons crit chance will be based on your melee crit chance.

Daxxarri -- Shiv changes
The new Shiv will apply concentrated effects of the active utility poison. Those effects are not included in the poison tooltips currently available on the calculator, but here are the current versions:
  • Crippling Poison – Reduces the target's speed by 70% for 12 seconds.
  • Mind-Numbing Poison – Increases the casting time of an enemy's next spellcast within 8 seconds by 100%.
  • Wound Poison – Reduces the target's healing received by 50% for 6 seconds.
  • Leeching Poison – Instantly restores 5% of the Rogue's health.
  • Paralytic Poison – Roots the target in place for 4 seconds.
In before "Blues do read this forum"!



Yeah they should take the stun off of the actual poison and swap it with this effect as the stun is really random.

Well, yes. The random part is kind of important though.

An additional controllable stun that's on a different DR would be excessive. On the other hand, if it's on the same DR as CS and KS then that's... not good. By putting the root on Shiv and leaving the stun on the poison stacking we avoid that entirely, and rogues get a sweet stun that's on the random proc DR instead.

Despite the title of the thread (which I will callously change), we're interested in player feedback on the shiv change as a whole, though.

So what do you think?



Question: Why did attacks using % weapon damage drop so much?

Answer: We are in the process of recalculating the way damage is dealt. Individual weapon damage is going up by the same proportion in order to keep DPS at level 85 about the same. This should ensure that, at lower levels, these abilities aren't overpowered.

Also, I'll try to drop back this thread tomorrow with some answers to a few on-topic questions that have already been asked.



We always knew you loved us.

I have to chuckle because I recall the days of entire threads dedicated to the question of why "Blizz" hates rogues and *vanish* OMGSPIDERS /\/\(;..;)/\/\.

But yes, we really always did. We love all our adventuring childrens and we have no favorites (this means you, reader who plays another class who is currently considering re-posting this thread in another class forum while claiming that Blizzard loves rogues best because they got a blue post here.)

Now then, to business!


Q. Will the thrown weapon talents have a chance to apply one or both active poisons?
We're not sure about this yet. It's more likely that we'll apply damage poisons than the non-lethal ones, especially in the case of Shuriken, because a fairly spammable ranged snare is probably too good.

Sorry, guys. You can still use Shuriken + Deadly Throw though!

Q. If I have Deadly Brew, will Shiv amplify that Crippling Poison effect in addition to my active poisons?
No. Deadly Brew isn't the same as having Crippling actually active.

Q. For clarification, how exactly do active poisons work? One lethal, one utility, both with potential to proc from both weapons?
One Lethal, one Non-Lethal, and both poisons are effectively on both weapons. Whenever you land either a mainhand or off-hand strike, you have a chance to apply both your Lethal and Non-Lethal poison.

Q. How does poison proccing work now, and what does that mean for weapon speed.
Poison procs are largely unchanged, except, y'know, for all poisons being percentage-based in the future. We're looking to get rid of the "fast 1.4 speed dagger" thing. The plan is for offhand daggers to just be daggers and interchangeable with main hand daggers. So we're anticipating Assassination and Subtlety rogues will use 1.8/1.8 daggers for the most part, while Combat will use a 2.6 main hand and a 1.8 offhand dagger. I know some of you noticed a Main Gauche change, and the intention isn't a nerf. If it needs adjustment, it's important to remember that numbers are still in flux.

On a separate note, while we don't have an elegant system in place for it, we do know that a lot of Combat rogues want to at least have the appearance of dual wielding swords/axes/maces. There are a lot of hurdles, but maybe we'll find a good way to deliver on that. No promises though! So, again, don't get your hopes up too high.

Q. So, how about an offensive dispel using the shiv system (perhaps as an alternative to Mind Numbing)?
It's something we might consider, but if too many people have access to an effect like that, then magic buffs are increasingly devalued, and that causes all kinds of problems. For example, something like Hand of Protection is cool, but significantly less meaningful if too many classes out there can remove it with a button press. So, we'll think about it, but don't get your hopes up.

Q. Is Mind Numbing nerfed, now that it won't affect all casts for the duration?
That's a bit of a misunderstanding. Base Mind-Numbing is unchanged and works as it does now. The new Shiv effect stacks on top of the base Mind-Numbing, and is more than triply effective on the single next spellcast.

Q. Any chance of a sweet UI element warning the rogue that he's approaching 5 stacks of paralytic poison, or letting him know that it went off?
Making it easier to track buffs and debuffs in the UI, including using the Spell Alert system, is something we're always looking at.

Sadly, because it was too good -- which is pretty much the same reason anything ever gets nerfed. Basically, we're looking to chill out some of the passive, automatically-applied snares on some classes get because there's no real gameplay to them beyond just I touch you and you're snared.

Crippling is an important tool though, and we didn't want to take it away entirely. By lowering the base snare and allowing Shiv to still apply the -70% form, snaring opponents or kiting other melee classes that also have snares becomes something you'll need to think about and manage.

Is Crippling going to last 12 seconds in PVP now, instead of 8 seconds?
Nay. PvP durations are capped at 8 (and nothing should break that rule), but PvP durations aren't shown in the tooltips.

Q. Under the proposed system, it looks like it won't be possible to take both Paralytic and Leeching Poison. Will we have to have to choose between Paralytic and Crippling?
You can take both Paralytic and Leeching, but you'll be able to actively make use of one at a time. That said, switching poisons isn't necessarily impossible in the heat of combat -- the cast time on swapping will be fairly short.

That said, we're taking a look at the decision involved in the current placement of the different Poison-related talents, and that's something we may reevaluate. Still early days yet – and that applies to everything in this list.

Q. But Daxx! RAWR RAIDING! What's this PvP nonsense?
We'd like Shiv to be useful when raiding too, and increasing the availability of such effects makes it easier to design encounters that permit them to shine. It bears mentioning that, even now, the various Shiv effects could be useful in existing raid encounters. There's no reason to expect that they couldn't be useful in Mists raid design too.

Also, there's more to PvE than raiding. Just because a talent isn't useful when you're fighting Ultraxion doesn't mean it isn't useful in PvE at large. There's still leveling (remember, tier 1 talents should ideally be relevant and useful to a level 15 player!), outdoor dailies, the upcoming challenge modes, and more to consider.

Sooooo... Does this mean that rogue damage might go up if we lose some control/mobility/survivability?
We want rogue PvE damage to remain top-tier. But yes, if rogues end up with less control or mobility or survivability, and they have to choose among those areas, then that allows us to safely improve their damage potential in PvP while keeping the class balanced overall.



Any chance you guys will consider making Wound a lethal poison?

There's a chance, we'll have a look.



I think I see, in the Shiv tool-tip. It says 25% weapon damage (far less than 200!), dis-enrage, and a concentrated form of your active non-lethal poison.

It's still a weapon strike, you'd think it'd still have a chance to apply a poison, even if it isn't guaranteed.

Yep, Shiv can still proc poison normally when it's triggered.

Also, for those who were curious, it's looking like it will be about a 3 second cast time to swap poisons in combat. So, you won't be flip flopping between poisons on a whim, but if it's really clutch to swap to a different poison, then it's not totally out of the question.

Orlyia -- Selling the new mount in game? Not allowed.

["Can I sell the new mount in game?"]

There is zero 'gray' area here.

It's NOT allowed - period.

Anything claimed out of game cannot have ingame currency applied. You claim this out of game and it binds to an account, therefore ingame currency for it is off limits.

Have a code you can actually turn in - ingame? That's fine. Have an item you can trade to someone - ingame? That's fine. Something that you cannot trade ingame and is claimed through the website, absolutely not.

Folks - these are 99.9999999% of the time scams. Purchased with stolen or fraudulent funds.

What you'll end up with is a whole lotta nuttin. No mount, no gold and potentially - no account.

Don't do it and please report anyone you see advertising. Chances are VERY good it's a stolen account being pressed into service.

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