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BlizzCon 2011 coverage (content day two)

Raylan13 October 22, 2011 User blog:Raylan13
MistsofPandariaLogo

The Mists of Pandaria

Q&A Panels

Class, items, professions

Classes

General info
  • Increasing base resources, like runic power, energy, etc., via talents like we can now: possibly, but it will be on a class-by-class basis
  • No decision yet on new slots - one idea is to keep the total character number cap (50), but allowing players to spread them across servers as they want
  • New spell at 87, but don't want to start cluttering things up
IconSmall Priest  Priests (Shadow)
  • Shadow orbs may function more akin to Holy Power. [Mind Blast], for instance, wouldn't require mana to use, but shadow orbs. How often you can use the ability depends on how many shadow orbs you have.
  • May have a glyph that reduces the alpha levels with [Shadowform] so players can better see their own armor.
IconSmall Druid  Druids
  • [Demoralizing Roar] removed in its current incarnation.
  • No plans for dual-wielding
  • As far as eclipse goes: [Hurricane] will have an arcane version for players that find themselves on the other side of the bar
  • Druids will lose their ability to pump out DPS, then pop into bear form and tank; this change is intended to bring druids more in line with other tank classes, as their is now the Feral (cat) and Guardian (bear) specs.
  • To that end:
IconSmall Warrior  Warriors
IconSmall Deathknight  Death Knights
  • Looking at survivability for tanks; the armor bonus from [Blood Presence] will be increased to 55% in the 4.3PTR
  • Examining minions inheriting secondary stats, such as Crit and Mastery; need some love there
IconSmall Mage  Mage (Arcane)
IconSmall Hunter  Hunters
  • Looking at returning the legendary weapon, but has to live up to standards and quality inherent in today's legendaries
  • No plans to allow equipping of melee weapons
  • Hopefully will be able to see quivers now on back
Monks
  • Healing "stance" will change the resource bar, similarly to how druid forms change their bars
  • Trying to pair healing with some DPS
  • Remove some need to target players with healing, looking at proximity single/multiple target healing
  • Statue placement plays into this, pre-placed during fights that will emit healing while the monk pours out some DPS
IconSmall Shaman  Shamans
  • New ability, Elemental Harmony, allows the shaman to place multiple totems from the same element - not intended to work in a way that will result in outpouring of DPS, so no three fire totems
IconSmall Warlock  Warlocks
  • Renaming minions - looking at something that would cost gold, perhaps being able to go to a particular NPC who would slay your minion, allowing you to summon another with a different name

Items

Transmogrification
  • Hopefully going to include as many of the "old and treasured" items we're all familiar with
  • Noggenfogger Elixir and mounting: not going to happen, it seems; has to do with bugs issues
  • Aware tanks want a legendary - want to make sure if it is included, fits in with story
  • Possible inclusion of Strength polearms

Professions

IconSmall Archaeology  [Archaeology]
  • Looking at ways to tweak the professions. Some examples:
    • maybe fire a flare gun that will drop a ladder, then take you to another dig site
    • possibility of random encounters with mobs while you dig, such as mummies
    • possible daily quests
IconSmall Engineering  [Engineering]
  • Looking at updating items, but concerned about balancing; perhaps restrict where items can be used

Open Q&A

Accounts

  • Seeing as how achievements and companions are going to become account-bound, there's a "good chance" things like mounts will take the same route down the line.
  • Blizzard Authenticator will have an option to require use at every log in, though when wasn't nailed down.
  • For characters that use transfer services, often the quests they have are wiped. This includes legendary quest lines. It "would be nice" to have a "white-list" of quests that are excluded from this. Good idea, but not in development right now.
  • With companion pets having a shared page across all characters, the same might be done down the line for things like mounts and heirlooms, to avoid the need of sending them in the mail

Guilds

  • Guild services, such as the promised name change feature, will be delivered in two weeks.
  • Options right now that are only designated for Guild masters may be able to be delegated sometime in the future, but the concern is players abusing those powers and hurting the guild, which Blizzard would then have to deal with.

Raids and battlegrounds

  • Still love the idea of having a spectator mode, but nothing on the table right now
  • Despite the addition of a new healing class, there are no plans to change the number of healers required for raids
  • If Challenge Modes work well for dungeons, it may be applied to raids in the future

Classes

  • Looking at updating [Moonkin Form] still; no ETA
  • Just as they're planning on provided cosmetic upgrades to Hunters with the showing of quivers and ammo pouches, they're looking at doing this for all classes in some form or another. An example was for paladins: even though relics are being removed, they want to still provide the visual component of librams.

Professions

  • Now that wands are being moved to the main hand slot, enchanters will finally be able to make more powerful wands.
  • A possible new craftable mount is on the horizon. Possibly for jewelcrafting.

Transmogrification

  • Blizzard understand how hard it was to obtain certain items (example was Inv staff 30  [Benediction]) when they were relevant. Want to reward players who worked hard for the items, so thinking about introducing the same models, but with different textures to differentiate between the "newer" version and the old version.

Pandaren

  • No plans to make Alliance and Horde pandaren stand out from each other.

Lore Q&A

Characters

  • Illidan Stormrage seemed to be a popular character that Blizz was willing to look into bringing back, but not necessarily for this expansion; when it fits.
  • Arthas Menethil: no word on where his body is after he was killed. No confirmation whether the tomb in the Stormwind City Cemetery is his or not. Others of Arthas's family whose whereabouts/disposition are unknown: Arthas's sister and mother. Chris Metzen likes the idea of his mother having died before his corruption at some point, but nothing is for certain.
  • Tyrande Whisperwind and Jaina Proudmoore are going to have their days, soon. Just as Horde characters have recently had their stories fleshed out, Tyrande and Jaina are on the block.
  • Varian Wrynn: to that end, Varian is also going to have his story fleshed out, so that there's little question as to why the Alliance races should follow him. Metzen envisions something along the lines of the labors of Labours of Hercules, where Varian has to complete monumental tasks for each of the Alliance races to prove himself. Players might get the chance to come along as something like his squire ("Trials of the High King"). It seems there's a desire to put Varian at least somewhere near the same level as Thrall.
  • Is Baine Bloodhoof a Sunwalker? Unlikely, as the vision of Baine is that he's an earthy Tauren, just like his father, and magical abilities and such would get in the way of that.
  • It seems that Bolvar Fordragon might be doing nothing in Northrend with the Scourge, but we're assured that isn't the case. Of course it seems that way in the game, as players need to progress through and complete those quests. Metzen, if he were novelizing it, suggested that the Scourge would actually become dormant in Northrend after Bolvar's ascension; however, he also said that the Scourge in the Plaguelands should be considered autonomous to some extent, maybe driven by something other than the Lich King at this point.
  • Sylvanas Windrunner has a limited amount of Val'kyr-based resurrections left at her disposal. Four, it seems, if the numbers are correct. This is because there aren't many of the Val'kyr that remain, and she cannot make any more of them. On another note, it was said that the number of Val'kyr required for a resurrection is based on the age of the participating Val'kyr: the older they are, the less of them that are needed to sacrifice themselves.

Races

  • Pandaren:
    • The pandaren in the beginning zone, the Wandering Isle, are considered to be a little different culturally than their brethren away in Pandaria due to the thousands of years that have passed since their split. This is why these particular pandaren can choose between the factions, whereas those on the Pandaren continent wouldn't be as likely.
    • Even so, there's no true hatred or animosity between pandaren after they choose their faction.
    • There's no true ruler of Pandaria, despite having an emperor in the past. The leadership is more described as venerated figures, of which Chen Stormstout may be a part of.
  • Trolls:
    • The Zandalar make a return in the expansion and play a role in Pandaria. Their mission is still the same: the reunification of the troll empires, and it seems they're "driven by something"
  • Gilneas:
    • A possible return at some point, but it has to fit in the story.

Items

  • The Demon Soul: they are aware of the time-line repercussions, and promise they have things figured out
  • The Shards of Frostmourne: whereabouts unknown, but likely someone has them somewhere
  • The crown of Terenas Menethil II, after Arthas slew his father: also unknown; as a joke, audience was told it would be a legendary loot drop

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