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Patch 5.4 PTR: Proving Grounds Preview


Ever since the Proving Grounds feature was announced back at the very start of Mists of Pandaria, players have been desperate to get their hands on this new feature. We all thought Brawler's Guild was Proving Grounds, we all felt a little sad when it wasn't (although Brawler's Guild is amazing), and we've all been waiting so long. But the wait is finally over, and Blizzard Community Manager Nethaera has posted a blog detailing just exactly what we can expect from this new content.

She starts off by giving the reader a bit of background on the idea, before launching into what we really want to know: just exactly how it will work for each role.
Tank: You will be tasked with protecting an NPC from oncoming waves of enemies, which will test your tanking skills in various ways. Fear not, though a friendly NPC will assist, by healing you, and damaging the enemies.

Damage: Sometimes you just have to go it alone. You'll melt the usual faces, while handling a variety of mechanics including interrupting heals, chasing down runners, timing cooldowns, avoiding harmful mechanics, and more.

Healer: Four NPCs will join you to form a full party. It will take a special healing touch to keep your friends alive, as you work together to face the challenges of attacking enemies.

What do you think of the role-specific descriptions? I personally hope that the NPC in the harder difficulties will do all the stupid things that players do in-game, to ensure that your tank training is as thorough and realistic as possible. For example, if it could unleash all its burst cooldowns on an add just the very second it appears, while also standing in fire, that would be great.

It's excellent that the DPS version isn't just a target dummy, but requires a little active movement, dodging fire, interrupting, that sort of thing. The healing one requires similar actions to the tanking one to make the AIs as realistic as possible, and if they could possibly be programmed to say "omg no heals" when they die to big purple puddles on the floor, that would certainly add to my immersion.

Altogether, I'm really looking forward to trying out this feature, and you can rest assured that WoW Insider will keep you informed on how they all play out.

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