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Category: Warcraft

Heart of the Valorous Buff, Character Models On WoD Website

Starting the end of this week until June 10th the Heart of the Valorous buff, which increases your valor point gain by 100%, will be active!

Update: For the EU it will be up until Tuesday, June 10 at 18:00 CEST.

Quote from: Blizzard
Heart of the Valorous Buff

A heroes’ journey is long and fraught with danger, but our goblin engineers have managed to cobble a little something special together for you to help make the path to power just a little bit easier.

 

Beginning Friday, May 30 at 9:00 a.m. realm-time, through Tuesday, June 10 at 9:00 a.m. realm-time, we’ll be applying the Heart of the Valorous buff which will increase the rate of Valor Point gains an additional 100%. Don’t wait to get in on the action!

The female gnome and male tauren character models have been updated on the official Warlords of Draenor website!

Quote from: Blizzard
Character Viewer Updated: Female Gnome & Male Tauren!
We’ve updated the viewer on our website with two of the revised character models you’ll see in Azeroth and beyond with Warlords of Draenor. Meet the new and improved Tauren Male and Gnome Female!Our character artists strived to recapture the charm of the classic models while taking advantage of the expressiveness of their fluid new animations to bring new life to these beloved characters. We hope you like the new looks as much as we enjoyed making them.

We’ll continue to unearth more of Draenor and the shiny visuals coming to World of Warcraft around the release of Warlords. Keep your magnifiers and spectacles ready!

Azeroth Choppers Episode 7—Vote Now!

The newest Azeroth Chopper is up and with it the voting has begun! Voting is open until Monday, and the winner will be put in the game as a free mount for everyone on that faction.

Quote from: Blizzard
Azeroth Choppers Episode 7—Vote Now!

Prepare for battle! Armor has been polished and blades sharpened—the bikes are finally revealed for the first time and ready for your votes! Back at Blizzard HQ, team Horde and team Alliance eagerly await seeing their completed bikes fired up for the first time.


Head over to www.AzerothChoppers.com NOW to cast your vote for your favorite bike and let your faction’s war cry be heard with #AzerothChoppers.

Garrison Preview Part 1—Your Base on Draenor

The first Garrison preview blog has just been released!

Quote from: Blizzard

At BlizzCon 2013, we shared a lot of our ideas for Warlords of Draenor’s Garrisons. We knew early on in development that this feature would strike a chord with long-time Warcraft players going back to the RTS days, as well as set the tone for the conflict with the Iron Horde. Since BlizzCon, we’ve been experimenting and iterating on Garrison concepts in our design laboratories, and we wanted to give you an updated preview of what’s to come.

In this 4-part series, we’ll be giving you a much closer look at how Garrisons are shaping up and how you can expect to interact with them in Warlords of Draenor. For this first installment, we’re going to start off by painting a picture of Garrisons in relatively broad strokes, setting the stage to delve into the functional depth over the coming weeks in parts 2 through 4.

Establish Your Garrison While You Level

We want the process of staking your claim on Draenor to fundamentally shape your gameplay experience. Over the course of building your Garrison, we want you to face exciting decisions that will meaningfully impact how you interact with the world around you, fulfilling that fantasy of building and operating your own Warcraft base.

The story you weave in Draenor is one of personal heroism, but your actions have a wider impact—part of your mission is to raise an army capable of toppling the Iron Horde, and the Garrison is integral to that experience. In terms of gameplay, that means you’ll be creating and strengthening your Garrison as you journey to level 100. While questing through Draenor, you’ll encounter opportunities to choose between different types of buildings to add to your Garrison. Each choice will have an impact on your leveling experience, influencing the quests you’ll have available and the zone-specific benefits you’ll unlock upon completion of your chosen structure.

As an example, you can choose either the Lumber Mill or the Sparring Arena while questing in Gorgrond. Not only does this choice unlock the design blueprints that allow you to add the building to your Garrison, it also lets you construct a military outpost centered around that building in Gorgrond. This plays an integral role in how you experience the zone, as you’ll be sent on quests specific to the building you’ve chosen and will receive a permanent benefit whenever you’re in Gorgrond.

When you’ve completed constructing a building in a zone—and subsequently unlocked it for your Garrison—we want you to feel duly rewarded for helping to strengthen the forces in the area against the Iron Horde. To give you more of a feeling for the ideas we have for zone benefits, imagine summoning a brutish ogre bodyguard from your Sparring Arena when in Gorgrond, or calling down artillery strikes from your Armory while in Talador. Our goal is for each zone to offer equally compelling alternatives from which to choose, and to provide you with plenty of powerful creatures to vanquish with your newfound powers.

Enlist Followers to Join Your Garrison

Your Garrison wouldn’t be much of a base without some citizens to populate it—we call these brave souls Followers. You’ll be able to recruit Followers through a wide variety of methods—you can think of it sort of like collecting mounts or battle pets. And, like battle pets, different Followers will have varying skill sets, including their own strengths and weaknesses. Some Followers are unique and might even have names already familiar to you, while others will make for fine grunts to operate the saws of your Lumber Mill, brew potions in your Alchemy Lab, or craft magical components in your Enchanter’s Study. You can maximize the productivity of your Garrison by assigning specific Followers to the posts where which they’re most proficient, such as Johnny Blacksmith, who will increase the output of materials from—you guessed it—your Blacksmith when assigned to work it. Similarly, Followers more suited to combat would be ideal to send on missions, from which you can acquire an assortment of useful bounty.

Missions will have variable difficulties, durations, and group size requirements, and some will play better to the strengths of particular Followers over others. A wise commander will create the ideal team for a mission and send them off to reap the maximum rewards. Complete enough missions and your Followers will level up, and once they’ve reached level 100, they can continue to improve their item levels, abilities, and traits. After you’ve sent a group on a mission, progress will continue whether you’re hanging out in your Garrison, battling through Blackrock Foundry, or even sleeping soundly logged out of the game.

The buildings you create, NPCs you meet, and Followers you recruit will ultimately determine who inhabits your Garrison, and you’ll see them going about their business each time you visit. You’re in charge of your own base and citizens, and you’ll even host leaders and other notable heroes from your faction to talk war strategy—among other things.

We’ve also improved NPC AI (artificial intelligence) to further reinforce that “bustling town” feeling as you expand your Garrison. While Azeroth’s NPCs have traditionally been manually scripted to move along set paths for predetermined amounts of time, stopping at certain locations and then heading in new directions only as commanded, this behavior wouldn’t have sufficed for Followers. A particular Follower might need to know on which plot within your Garrison you’ve built your Trading Post, for example, so he or she can make the trek to and from that specific location while doing your bidding. This improved AI also allows us to create more dynamic behavior, where NPCs can react to your commands or other situations happening around them. Want to have your subjects join you in a conga line around town? Thanks to improved AI and a new player emote, you can . . . and they will!

Fortify Your Fortress

Questing during the leveling process on Draenor will be the primary means by which you establish and grow your base, but the blueprints that allow you to construct different buildings can be obtained in a variety of ways. For example, you can find Followers who will teach you blueprints, obtain them via drops from creatures out in the world or in dungeons, or earn them via faction reputation. At level 100, you can also purchase blueprints from a vendor for the buildings from each zone you originally didn’t choose. So, if you decide to build a Mage Tower instead of an Armory in Talador, you’ll still be able to purchase the blueprints that allow you to build an Armory in your Garrison later on. From there you may decide you want an Armory instead of a Mage Tower in your Garrison—or maybe you’ll find room for both!

You’ll have access to 21 unique building types in all, each of which can be upgraded through 3 levels and then assigned specializations to maximize their effectiveness, and your Garrison can be expanded from its initial 4 building plots to a maximum of 10. If this sounds like too many big choices to make as you go along, don’t fret! You’ll be able to alter your building choices to suit your needs—and the needs of the war effort.

The Garrison also grants you other powerful benefits. It will play an integral role in your professions on Draenor, giving your character access to more than just the normal two primary professions (we’ll cover that in more depth in part 2 of this preview series). In addition, amassing a powerful army of Followers will maximize your chances of earning mission rewards like dungeon and entry-level raid loot for your character—but these will be tuned to feel more like bonuses rather than eclipsing your character’s direct accomplishments. We want there to be a ton of depth to the gameplay and customization of the Garrison, but we also don’t want to make players feel like they’re required to spend more time than they’d like laboring away on it after they’ve reached level 100. We recognize that there’s a fine line between introducing a system that provides cool bonuses and adding “chores” that feel necessary for cutting-edge endgame progression. To this end, players who prefer to level up mostly through dungeons or Battlegrounds will still be able to purchase the building blueprints that would otherwise be obtained through questing on Draenor.

The Last Line of Defense

Draenor is a savage and dangerous land. From the moment you set foot onto its soil, you will be hounded at every turn by the united clans of the Iron Horde. With few allies at your side, establishing a well-defended base will be one of the first orders of business. As the story unfolds, you’ll find that Garrisons are intimately integrated into every zone—whether you choose to follow the main quest path or just head off into the hills to explore, you will meet allies (and enemies) in every corner of the world. While your main fortress will always be in Shadowmoon Valley (Alliance) or Frostfire Ridge (Horde), you will establish Garrison outposts in Gorgrond, Talador, Nagrand, and Spires of Arak, all customized based on your building choices. Eventually, your forces will span the continent, and you will have an army capable of assaulting the fortified Iron Horde Foundry. Will your troops succeed? That’s entirely up to you, commander.

More to Come!

Thank you for joining us on this quick tour of your Garrison, and we hope you’ll come back for the rest—we’ve only just scratched the surface of this exciting new feature. In Part 2, we’ll take a much closer look at the buildings, including all 21 unique building types and their perks and specializations, as well as how professions are integrated. Stay tuned!

Artcraft – Cosmetic Class Accessories

A surprising new artcraft was just released about cosmetic class accessories! Keep in mind they’re just in a concept phase!

Quote from: Blizzard
Artcraft—Concept: Class Accessories

Hi, I’m Chris Robinson, senior art director of World of Warcraft, and welcome to a special edition of Artcraft focused on an idea that’s still quite early in the inception phase: class accessories. For a long time now, we’ve felt that our character classes could use some more visual customization options, and we’ve heard you might be thinking the same thing. When I play WoW, I see Hunters pulling arrows from thin air, firing shot after shot with no visible clue as to where that ammo is coming from. I’ve heard Druids speak fondly of mystical objects called Idols, and listened to Shamans talk of Totems. And my Paladin seems to have developed a strange hitch in his gait due to the lack of a Libram at his side.

 

While some of those items once existed in-game as gear for the now-retired “Relic” slot, you’ve never been able to actually see those items on your character. We’ve been cooking up some concepts for how we might be able to bring that sort of class-specific visual customization back in the form of purely cosmetic class accessories—and while we’re not here to herald their imminent arrival, we thought it would be fun to give you a sneak peek at what we’re conceptualizing from an art perspective, and have our item-design guru Owen Landgren give you some insight into how they might work.

 

Before we show you the goods, keep in mind these are still way early in the design process, and getting them into the game will likely need to wait until after you’ve faced off against the Iron Horde. But this is something that’s been requested so frequently, we thought you might appreciate knowing we’re working to make it happen (eventually). So without further delay, here are a few concepts for you to take a look at!

Artcraft_AC_AmmoPouch.jpg

 

As you can see, these concepts are all somewhat Alliance focused, at least for now. We’re thinking we’ll have Horde and Alliance color schemes for accessories whenever it makes sense. And while we’re planning on creating the “obvious” accessories for the classes that once had Relics, we have a lot of ideas for accessories we think would be awesome for all of the classes. Don’t let that stop you from sharing your own ideas with us, though!

Artcraft_AC_Quiver.jpg

 

 

Now that you’ve gotten a glimpse at what we’re working on in the art realm, here’s Owen to explain the designers’ early thinking on how these might be worked into the game:

 

“Back in ye olden days of Cataclysm and earlier, the Relic gear slot provided some classes with an additional item that would impart character stat bonuses. We always thought it would have been cool to show these Relics on your character, but aside from the generic quiver for Hunters wielding a bow, the artists just didn’t have time to do the concept justice. We were also faced with some unique design challenges, including questions about how much additional unique artwork would have been required for each new tier of raid and PvP gear. However, once the Relic slot was retired and the visuals could be divorced from gearing mechanics, the idea of bringing these back as a character customization feature became something we talked about more and more.

Our goal with these class accessories is to offer players a whole new path to customizing the look of their character. While you might decide to wear the same armor as your friend, choosing different accessories allows you to communicate something extra about your character. As a Rogue, are you the swashbuckling buccaneer with daggers on a bandolier and stashed up every sleeve? Or are you the poisoner, carrying bubbling, smoking vials filled with terrible concoctions? Perhaps you’re the shadowy figure that lurks in the dark, replete with darts and throwing stars to fell your enemies from a distance? As you obtain new looks, you’ll be able to mix and match thematically—if a particular Hunter gear set looks better with a longbow and quiver than a blunderbuss and ammo pouch, the option is yours. Mix in Transmogrification, and the visual combinations are nearly endless.

Artcraft_AC_Libram.jpg

 

We envision that class accessories will be rewarded from a variety of accomplishments in World of Warcraft. These could be as simple as attaining a new level, or as monumental as conquering a vicious raid boss. We want each player to have access to multiple accessories, but have some rarer accessories that take more effort to obtain.
          —Owen Landgren, Game Designer

 

Hey there—Chris again. As we mentioned, these are still just some early ideas and concepts, and we hope you enjoyed getting a glimpse behind the scenes. We know a lot of you are excited about the idea of having new ways to customize the look of your characters, and we look forward to sharing more as we continue to make progress. Thanks for reading!

 

You can follow Chris Robinson and Owen Landgren, as well as World of Warcraft game director Tom Chilton on Twitter.

Patch 5.4.8 Coming To Live Servers This Week!

Patch 5.4.8 is coming to the live servers this week and it seems that the double valor point buff and increased quest item droprate buff for the legendary quest chain will not be released with it! Rygarius tweeted that more information will follow on them at a later date! Be sure to cap out your valor points this week if you still can, as we will be getting the 4x item upgrades this week!

Quote from: Blizzard
World of Warcraft Patch 5.4.8 

Updated May 19

Classes

  • Druid
    • Resolved an issue where Cat Form’s movement speed bonus was stacking incorrectly with Warrior’s version of Stampeding Shout granted via Symbiosis.
  • Rogue
    • Burst of Speed can now be activated to remove movement-slowing effects even if another movement speed bonus such as Sprint is already present (the speed bonuses will still not stack).

Raids, Dungeons, and Scenarios

  • Siege of Orgrimmar
    • General Nazgrim
      • General Nazgrim no longer calls in an additional wave of forces at 10% health on Raid Finder difficulty.
    • Garrosh Hellscream
      • Increased berserk timer for Garrosh Hellscream to 25 minutes (up from 18 minutes) on Raid Finder difficulty.

Items

  • All upgradable epic quality items introduced in Patch 5.4 (items found in Siege of Orgrimmar and Timeless Isle) are now eligible to be upgraded an additional 2 times for a total increase of 16 item levels.
  • Heirloom weapons awarded by Garrosh Hellscream have been increased by 8 item levels to keep them competitive with the additional 2 upgrade levels given to other items.
  • Mistweaver Ai on the Timeless Isle next to the Celestial Court now sells a token called Deeds of Valor for 3000 Timeless Coins. When used, Deeds of Valor grants 100 Valor Points to the character, up to the 1000 Valor Point maximum per week.
  • For additional details behind this change, please check out the forum thread titled: Gear Changes in Patch 5.4.8.

UI

  • UI Add-Ons are no longer able to update a number of CVars while the player is in combat. A complete listing of CVars affected by this change can be found in the forum thread titled: 5.4.8 Changes to CVars While In-Combat.

Achievements

  • Going to Need a Bigger Bag is now an account-wide achievement and items obtained by all characters on the account now contribute credit towards completion. This means the achievement can be completed by obtaining all the required items across multiple characters instead of having a single character obtain all the items needed.

WoD Alpha Delay Reasoning

warlords banner small
Zarhym explained on twitter why the Alpha is taking so long to start.

So it seems that the Alpha related blog posts have been mostly to explain what’s going on, to not leave players in the dark when sites like MMO-Champion datamined the information from the Alpha servers.

At the same time the Alpha still hasn’t begun because there’s still work to be done in the zones as the developers weren’t have with how some quest chains were working out. So for now we will just have to continue being patient!