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Posts Tagged ‘Gamon’

Ghostcrawler Talks Tanking

Ghostcrawler Talks Vengeance

Ghostcrawler, the Lead Systems Designer on World of Warcraft had some very interesting information and explanations on the new tanking mechanic, Vengeance, in a recent blog post on the new World of Warcraft community website. Vengeance is a new passive ability that all tank specced classes receive. This ability converts damage taken into an attack power bonus to make sure that tanks can cope with the ever-increasing dps of our characters.

During the blog post  admits that as with all new mechanics and additions in Cataclysm there is a lot tweaking still to happen to Vengeance. Blizzard are still desperate trying to walk the line, trying to keep the balance between the difficulty and fun of tanking. Read the full thing below, if you’re a tank I am sure you will enjoy it!

A very nice paladin player asked me recently about Vengeance. She had concerns about the mechanic, which made me realize that we haven’t done the best job of explaining to players exactly what Vengeance is supposed to accomplish.

Vengeance is a new passive ability gained by choosing one of the tanking talent trees: Protection for warriors and paladins, Blood for death knights, or Feral for druids. When a tank with one of these talent specs takes damage, she gains an attack power bonus based on the damage taken. This bonus can’t exceed 10% of her health.

Vengeance was designed for a single purpose, which is to make sure tank threat scales as other players improve their gear. Imagine a raid of reasonably geared level-85 characters. In the absence of Vengeance, the tank might generate about 50% of the damage of a DPS character. With the tank’s threat modifiers this should be sufficient for her to generate enough threat to keep her targets stuck to her (unless something unusual is going on in the encounter). The problem is that in later tiers the mages and rogues in the raid accumulate gear that continues to increase their damage, while the tank chooses gear that increases her survivability. Tanks will pick up some threat stats along the way, but as their survival is almost always a necessary condition for victory, they choose gear accordingly. In later tiers, instead of doing 50% of the damage of a DPS class, the tank might start to slip to 30% or less of a DPS character’s damage. Now threat becomes an issue. Threat needs to be an important part of the game — I’ll try to explain why we think so in a future blog. However, it isn’t our design intent for threat generation to get much harder in the third tier of content relative to the first.

So that’s what Vengeance is supposed to be. Here is what it’s not supposed to be. Vengeance is not supposed to solve the threat problem completely. A tank shouldn’t be able to just auto-attack and let Vengeance do the rest. Vengeance isn’t a replacement for the tank generating enough initial threat to get the targets to stick to her. She shouldn’t need to rely on Vengeance in the first six seconds of combat. It’s there to prevent the warlock from slowly creeping up on her threat in the middle of the fight. (If this has never happened to your raid, it’s possible that the huge threat transfer potential of the rogue Tricks of the Trade and hunter Misdirection masked how dicey threat really was for you, but those abilities were redesigned for Cataclysm.)  In fact, you shouldn’t need Vengeance at all in the first couple of tiers of Cataclysm content. If a lucky dodge streak causes Vengeance to fall off, and that means that you can’t generate enough threat, then either our numbers aren’t tuned correctly, or you need to L2tank.

Vengeance also isn’t supposed to make you scared to attack a tank in PvP. Tanks have enough benefits in PvP, such as being hard to kill and control, especially in Cataclysm when Rated Battlegrounds provide them with a role where they can defend flags or towers. Players generally don’t hit hard enough to trigger the full effect of Vengeance, unless they are all ganging up on one tank, at which point someone in the group should have the ability to dispel it (Vengeance is treated as an Enrage effect for dispel purposes).

Vengeance is a new mechanic, and like many design changes, it may take some tweaking to get right. Maybe it takes too long to stack up or falls off too easily. Maybe it does too much of the tank’s job for her and ends up producing a generation of lazy tanks. Threat is a tricky thing to balance. If it’s too easy to maintain, then the tank isn’t having fun. If it’s too hard to maintain, then nobody is having fun.

Believe it or not, we want tanking to be fun.

-Greg “Ghostcrawler” Street is the Lead Systems Designer for World of Warcraft and once killed a dinosaur with a spreadsheet.
Ghostcrawler, Blizzard Entertainment (Source)

J Allen Brack Interview

The Guardian has quite an extensive interview up with J. Allen Brack, the Chief Project Manager for World of Warcraft. In the interview he discusses the upcoming Cataclysm expansion and all it entails.  Everything from leveling in the expansion to the new guild additions, subscription rates to Barrens chat. It really does cover a lot and is no doubt a must read for anyone that wants as much World of Warcraft as they can get in this time leading up to the launch of Cataclysm.

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm – The Guardian

4.0.3a Hotfixes

Patch 4.0.3a Hotfixes – Gamon & Quest Changes

As I mentioned before the next round of hotfixes have been announced by Blizzard themselves and the November 30 list of hotfixes include a few pretty interesting changes indeed. It seems like Gamon is not done for yet, he has been buffed yet again. He is now immune to all forms of crowd control, uses the abilities Charge and Battle Shout, and wrecks adversaries with his new two-handed axe. Ouch. The other big change that happened here was the reduction to the amount of experience we will be gaining from Classic Dungeons quests. I won’t be posting full patch notes here, I will however just tell you that there were a bunch of general, quest and class fixes and point you in the right direction.

 Patch 4.0.3a Hotfixes – World of Warcraft Community Site

New Battleground Brackets

Following the recent region wide battlegroup announcement it seems like Blizzard is not done just yet. There are a bunch of, in my opinion, pretty big changes that have been made to the battleground queueing. Battleground brackets now match up teams more evenly with the new brackets spanning five levels each, except the final bracket composed of level 85 players. Along with that you can now enter Arathi Basin at level 10 along with Warsong Gulch. Eye of the Storm on level 35 and Alterac Valley on level 45. Strand of the Ancients on level 65 and Isle of Conquest on level 75. Lastly, you can only join Twin Peaks and the Battle for Gilneas on level 85. Great changes if you ask me. Definitely going to make things a lot more fun while leveling and I really think having the brackets smaller will also make the games a lot more fun to play. See the full changes below!

New Battleground Brackets – World of Warcraft Community Site

The uneasy armistice between the Horde and Alliance is steadily cracking beneath the strain of Deathwing’s devastating return and the Shattering of Azeroth, heralding a new era of bloody conflict.

The clash between the factions has also never been so hotly contested:  Battleground brackets now match up teams more evenly.  The new brackets span five levels each, except the final bracket composed of level 85 players:

10-14               30-34               50-54               70-74

15-19               35-39               55-59               75-79

20-24               40-44               60-64               80-84

25-29               45-49               65-69               85

Fighters can also join the battle in Arathi Basin, Eye of the Storm, and Alterac Valley at an earlier level than ever before:

Level 10 – Arathi Basin and Warsong Gulch

Level 35 – Eye of the Storm

Level 45 – Alterac Valley

Level 65 – Strand of the Ancients

Level 75 – Isle of Conquest

Level 85 – Battle for Gilneas and Twin Peaks

These changes should offer players a more consistently competitive experience in the Battlegrounds as their characters level, as well as provide for more exciting PvP conflict than ever before.  Are you eager to try 35-39 Eye of the Storm?  How about 45-49 Alterac Valley?  Perhaps you’d like to cut your teeth on a 10-14 Arathi Basin.

Let us know what you think in the comments!

Classic Dungeon

Classic Dungeon Level Changes

If you haven’t noticed just yet, the levels of the dungeons in the old world have been tweaked a little. It is in fact not a coincidence that you can now do Scholomance on level 38 or Stratholme on level 46. So to help us prepare for leveling those Goblins and Worgen, Blizzard have given us a rundown of all the instances and their respective levels. So you can read about all of that in the official post below.

The Cataclysm has wrought changes to many facets of Azeroth and the dungeons found across the world are no exception. As many of the zones throughout the world now have new level ranges, the dungeons within their borders have been adjusted to match, and the items that drop within those dungeons have had their stats changed accordingly.

Here’s a list of all 1-60 dungeons and the level range at which each should be explored, followed by the minimum level required for entry in parentheses.

In order by minimum level to enter.

  • The Deadmines – Level Range: 15-21 (10)
  • Ragefire Chasm – Level Range: 15-21 (10)
  • Wailing Caverns – Level Range: 15-25 (10)
  • Shadowfang Keep – Level Range: 16-26 (11)
  • Stormwind Stockade – Level Range: 20-30 (15)
  • Blackfathom Deeps – Level Range: 20-30 (15)
  • Gnomeregan – Level Range: 24-34 (19)
  • The Scarlet Monastery – Graveyard – Level Range: 26-36 (21)
  • The Scarlet Monastery – Library – Level Range: 29-39 (21)
  • The Scarlet Monastery – Armory – Level Range: 32-42 (21)
  • The Scarlet Monastery – Cathedral – Level Range: 35-45 (21)
  • Razorfen Kraul – Level Range: 30-40 (25)
  • Maraudon – Purple Crystals – Level Range: 30-40 (25)
  • Maraudon – Orange Crystals – Level Range: 32-42 (25)
  • Maraudon – Pristine Waters – Level Range: 34-44 (25)
  • Uldaman – Level Range: 35-45 (30)
  • Dire Maul – East – Level Range: 36-46 (31)
  • Scholomance – Level Range: 38-48 (33)
  • Dire Maul – West – Level Range: 39-49 (34)
  • Razorfen Downs – Level Range: 40-50 (35)
  • Dire Maul – North – Level Range: 42-52 (37)
  • Stratholme – Main Gate – Level Range: 42-52 (37)
  • Zul’farrak – Level Range: 44-54 (39)
  • Stratholme – Service Entrance – Level Range: 46-56 (41)
  • Blackrock Depths – Prison – Level Range: 47-57 (42)
  • The Sunken Temple – Level Range: 50-60 (45)
  • Blackrock Depths – Upper City – Level Range: 51-61 (46)
  • Lower Blackrock Spire – Level Range: 55-65 (48)
  • Upper Blackrock Spire – Level Range: 55-65 (48)

Daxxarri, Blizzard Entertainment (Source)

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Starcraft Pulse

Here’s Pulse Episode 29! Not much to say right now. I have been really, really busy with these episodes. Not finding much time for anything else. I hope these episodes are worth it, enjoy your Warcraft and Diablo News!

‘Continue reading’ for a full list of episodes and extras!

(more…)

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Elemental Invasion Phase 4

Elemental Invasion – Phase 4

The fourth Phase of the Elenemtal Invasion has hit and things are really heating up now. I actually do mean that literally. The elementals are invading all the capital cities around Azeroth and well, it is pretty clear that we are no longer safe. With this phase we are tasked with defending the cities, evacuating the citizens, driving those elementals out and then taking the fight to the enemy. Players now have access to four bosses that can be queued for via the Dungeon Finder Tool. Grand Ambassador Flamelash, Crown Princess Theradras, Kai’ju Gahz’rilla and Prince Sarsarun are all ready and waiting for our groups. There is some pretty decent gear to be collected and some great, slightly nostalgic fun, to be had too. So, what are you waiting for? Log in now and join the defense. The Shattering is nearly upon us!

Oh, you can read more about all of this craziness below, enjoy! 😀

Panic has seized Orgrimmar, Stormwind City, Thunder Bluff, and Ironforge. In each of these great capitals, guards have ordered citizens to evacuate in preparation for what they believe will be an elemental invasion of catastrophic proportions.

Yet not everyone has chosen to flee.

Several brave heroes have resolved to face the coming storm. Members of the Earthen Ring and leaders from among Azeroth’s noble races have also assembled to protect these Horde and Alliance strongholds from destruction. Exactly how the impending elemental assault will unfold remains unknown… and even the most ardent defenders are on edge as they await the threat of annihilation.

The events leading up to Cataclysm have reached a tipping point. Be sure to take advantage of this one-time opportunity to embark on unique new quests and fight for the survival of your homelands.

Elemental Invasion Part 4 – We’re under attack! – MMO-Champion

The Invasion Has Begun – World of Warcraft Community Site

Elemental Invasion

Elemental Invasion – Phase 3

Phase 3 of the Pre-Cataclysm Elemental Invasion has started up on the live servers and it seems like things are starting to move along quite a bit faster. In this phase we help track down a couple of cultists and botch a few rituals. It is all pretty fun and I suggest you all check it out. A quote from Zarhym below confirms that the next phase will be starting sooner than first expected. My first guess? This week, Tuesday / Wednesday during maintenance. We will probably also be seeing patch 4.0.3 hit the servers, too. (More on that below, though!)

The time between the start of stage 2 and stage 3 was shorter. I can tell you the current plan is to make the time between stage 3 and 4 even shorter. 😉
Zarhym, Blizzard Entertainment (Source)

As usual, if you feel you may well be missing something or just need a bit of help with these new quests, MMO-Champion and Wowhead have you covered!

Elemental Invasion – Part 3 – MMO-Champion

Elemental Invasion Phase 3 Has Opened! – Wowhead

Wrath of the Elements

Wrath Of The Elements

Blizzard has, via their new and impressive World of Warcraft community site, given everyone a little reminder that events leading up to Cataclysm are in full swing and should not be missed. The reminder tied in with the release of the Elemental Invasion Phase 3 and also provides a little summary of what is going on in Azeroth. If you missed any quests, if you have yet to do the quests or if you just don’t quite get or understand any of them, you should probably check the post out below.

Wrath of the Elements – World of Warcraft Community Site

Little progress has been made toward mending Azeroth’s dire condition. Thrall has nonetheless continued forging ahead in search of answers. Most recently, he journeyed to his ancestors’ lands in Nagrand on the shattered world of Outland. At the fabled Throne of the Elements, he has met with other wise shaman, including the venerable dwarf Gavan Grayfeather, hoping to glean even the smallest shred of insight that could help him save Azeroth from ruin.

Meanwhile, Twilight’s Hammer cultists have been caught infiltrating Orgrimmar and Stormwind City, sparking panic and suspicion among the two great cities’ inhabitants. Although the cult’s earlier bid to wreak havoc on these capitals had failed, this new development has raised fears that the Twilight’s Hammer is poised to launch another, far more devastating attack.

The events leading up to Cataclysm are underway and a great disturbance of the elements has erupted. Don’t miss out on the all-new quests featured during this one-time-only series of events.

 World of Warcraft Stories: The Spirit of Sharing

An interesting new initiative has been started up by Blizzard on their new World of Warcraft site. Blizzard has posted a couple of pretty heartwarming stories, because of Pilgrims Bounty that is actually starting up on the live servers soon, of family, epic moments and love, all while playing World of Warcraft. Apparently this new drive of theirs to collect community stories is not a once off thing and I think it is really cool, any community involvement at all is great. You can find the short stories below as well as read more about what’s to come.

World of Warcraft Stories: The Spirit of Sharing – World of Warcraft Community Site

Throughout the years, World of Warcraft players have opened up their hearts to the community and shared with us their inspirational stories of romances found, friendships built , and hardships overcome.

With Pilgrim’s Bounty just on the horizon, we’ve selected three uplifting stories to share, submitted for your reading pleasure. These are personal accounts from your fellow World of Warcraft enthusiasts that touch upon the importance of family, love, and laughter and remind us that there’s so much in our lives for which we should be thankful.

Winter Veil Stories Wanted!

Tied in with these cool new short stories is a request from Blizzard. They are looking to add a couple of interesting Winter Veil stories to their repertoire and well, the rest is up to us! So with Christmas just around the corner you had better either get nostalgic or get out there and experience some new experiences to share! Enjoy and, as usual, you can read the full thing below.

The coming of Greatfather Winter has long been celebrated as a time of change and rebirth. Blanketed in snow, the lands of Azeroth are able to replenish their strength and prepare for the re-awakening of Spring. The Feast of Winter Veil honors this spirit of renewal, encouraging generosity, charity, good cheer — and good eatin’.

For our next edition of World of Warcraft Stories, we want to explore these themes with you and learn how they may have influenced your life. If you’ve been blessed by the tidings of Winter Veil and have your own heartwarming or humorous story to share, head over to our submission page. ‘Tis the season, after all.

Raid Takes Gamon

Oh Gamon, it seems like only yesterday that we were in awe of your new levels, crazy damage and mad health pool. Now, though, it seems like people are back to their old ways, yes, Gamon the tauren is being killed once again. TotalBiscuit recently posted a hilarious video of his own “world first(well, not not really, but for the dramatic effect we will just believe it is.) kill on Gamon. You really have to see this video for yourself. Not because of the actual killing of Gamon but rather because TotalBiscuit makes it so damn entertaining. He really is amazing at what he does. You can find the video embedded above, check it out to see what fun there is to be had in Cataclysm, enjoy!

Patch 4.0.3 – Live This Week?

While it is not official that we will be seeing Patch 4.0.3 on the live servers this week, it is pretty much expected and well, let’s just say there is a large chance of it happening. Quick note – This patch will not be transforming the old world, that would be patch 4.0.3a, not too long off either, if you ask me! So if you are interested in reading more about Patch 4.0.3 you can find the full patch notes below. It is mostly just a bunch of general changes, UI changes / improvements and bug fixes. Enjoy!

World of Warcraft Client Patch 4.0.3 – MMO-Champion

Ghostcrawler Crab

Ghostcrawler – Now In-Game

A pretty interesting rare-elite mob was recently discovered in Cataclysm, in the zone of Vashj’ir. Ghostcrawler, yes, I said Ghostcrawler,  is a level 85 rare elite crab in the Abyssal Depths of Vashj’ir and he will even be tameable by hunters. Now, after this being posted on the front page on MMO-Champion you can probably expect a lot of people camping for this spectral, ghostly crab, come Cataclysm. Who could blame them, though, I mean come on, he has a skill called Nerf-Bat. Read more about Ghostcrawler the crab and see a couple of pictures in the post on MMO-Champion below.

ghostcrawler rareThanks to MMO-Champ for the screenies!

Moderator Recruitment, Ghostcrawler Pet, Blue Posts – MMO-Champion

Cataclysm Raid Markers

I actually mentioned this in my previous Pulse episode but never got around to actually posting about it. Below you can find a video of the cool new Cataclysm raid markers. Thanks MMO-Champion!

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Gamon Cataclysm

Gamon of the Horde

One of the most wailed on members of the Horde, the punching bag of Orgrimmar, yes, you guessed it, Gamon, has gotten some love. It is really interesting, actually, he has suddenly grown a few extra muscles and jumped up to become a level 85 Elite. I just thought I would share this little change with the world. If anyone needed a buff, it was poor old Gamon. He still resides in the Broken Tusk Inn but now pretty much one, or two shots anyone that attacks him and sports a hefty 1937k hp. Don’t mess.

In Other News – Come Back, Please?

It seems like Blizzard is doing all they can to get everyone they can back in World of Warcraft, once Cataclysm launches. Who would blame them? The game is shaping up to be amazing indeed and anyone, even those that aren’t World of Warcraft fans, is missing out by not playing it. But what is Blizzard’s hook this time, you ask? They are providing players with expired accounts with 7 days of free play time which you can claim between now and the 1st of December. Oh Blizzard, you cunning old fox you. That would mean your gametime would expire on the day of release, leaving you high and dry, hot and bothered, ready to throw your money at them.

This does provide some interesting insights into Blizzard schedule of events though. It would not surprise me if we see The Shattering on the 1st of December, just seems to make sense. Anyway, you can read the full thing at Kotako below.

Blizzard Offering A Week Of Free Time To Warcraft Apostates – Kotaku

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