Where do you go to grind Steamwheedle Cartel rep now? Is it just endless farming low level mobs?
I've been asking this question myself, since those factions are some of the last that I have to really grind out. My first instinct was to go to Wowpedia and look up a list of mobs and quests that gave me Steamwheedle Cartel reputation. Check out this list, and get to grinding. I'm sure there will be plenty of answers and tips in the comments, because I'd love to know the answer as well.
Any guesses as to how "stat normalization" will work for challenge modes? Nerfing primary stats seems relatively straightforward, just reduce/increase by a percentage or to a given value. However, secondary stats seem more complicated since people gear to hit caps, haste plateaus, etc. If the the same percent nerf/buff rule is applied to these, we'll end up above/below caps.
I do not know how the exact mechanics work, but currently in game, there is a mechanic to bring relative power levels in line with one another and scale down people's gear. You probably saw the buff (or debuff, in our case) on the test realms, especially during our epic fail Queen Azshara run during testing when she was nigh impossible to kill. Our characters had vastly overgeared the fight, but because of the zone-wide debuff to our item levels and stats, things were at a controlled difficulty.
Challenge modes will most likely work the same way. If you're overgeared for the content, the game will apply a debuff to you much like the one on the public test realm. If you are appropriately geared, nothing should happen. This is all theory, however. We have no idea how these challenge mode dungeons will work yet.
Batleth responded to my answer yesterday:
"I think there will be massive server migrations and merges in the future, but we won't see it. It will all happen behind the scenes."
Maybe I'm not fully understanding this sentence...
Do you mean that one day, in an attempt to balance or populate a server, Blizzard will move toons around without the consent of the paying customer? Please tell me I'm crazy and I'm not understanding.
What I am saying is that I believe the radical move Blizzard will make is that you won't ever leave your realm, but other realms will merge into yours. For example, let's say that three realms, A, B, and C, are all experiencing population problems. My theory is that you would still log in to server A but share the same virtual space with people from realms B and C. Towns would feel fuller, Auction Houses could be merged for low-pop realms, yet you would never know that you actually moved -- because you technically didn't. Does that make a bit more sense? It's a long shot, but it's the least invasive idea I could think of, and it really cuts down on the "WoW is dying, look at all these realms that are closing" rhetoric.
matt responded to my answer yesterday:
Mat said: "Personally, the last thing that I want is to have the old instances and raids to be challenging again in any fathomable way. In fact, I like those places because of how easy and fun it is to farm at my heart's content"
then why do you support the notion of an item level squish? Are you not aware that the impact of that will be to reduce your relative power compared to older raids? From the graph posted in the blue on the topic:
Post-squish @ 85 in DS epics your comparative power vs. Kara would be comparable to a lvl 70 in sunwell gear zoning in today, good luck solo farming that mount.
While I understand that post-squish my relative power will decrease significantly, Blizzard has said that the rest of the game would follow suit. We would have comparable power against level 60 or 70 bosses to we have now, since everything is getting squished, bosses included. I am hopeful that Blizzard can act on an item level and stat revamp successfully with minimal turbulence.
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