3.3.3 Random Dungeons, Blue posts, WoW TCG

Patch 3.3.3 – Random Dungeons Changes
Patch 3.3.3 should be deployed during the next maintenance on live servers and it's time to mention a few interesting changes to the Dungeon Finder that I forgot to report in the past weeks. Tons of minor changes have been made to make your life easier but there are two changes that will probably make you very happy.

First, the patch notes mention a change to "skip" the introduction of Culling of Stratholme. The change doesn't sound really exciting but it's actually a huge improvement over the previous version, you can basically talk to Chromie and skip all the roleplay to jump directly to the first Scourge wave. A couple of other tweaks have also been made to make the dungeon slightly faster and I'm pretty sure you won't skip it anymore. (Especially with a Deserter debuff extended to 30 minutes)

The second major changes to the random dungeon system is the new vote kick system, you can now give a reason when you start a vote to kick someone. At some point it was mentioned in a blue post that the 15 minute limit before you can kick someone was gone, but it doesn't seem to be the case in the current build of the PTR. We will have to wait and see how it works on the live servers.

These changes were in the patch notes but I think they're definitely worth a small dedicated spot on the front page. As a reminder, here is the Dungeon Finder part of the 3.3.3 Notes.

Quote from: Blizzard (Source)
Dungeon Finder

  • The Deserter debuff given to players who leave a dungeon prematurely when queuing via the Random Dungeon option has been increased to 30 minutes, up from 15 minutes. The cooldown for using the Random Dungeon option remains 15 minutes.
  • The Random Dungeon cooldown is no longer displayed as a debuff. Instead, players will see the cooldown time remaining displayed in the Dungeon Finder window when Random Dungeon or Random Heroic Dungeon is selected from the pull-down.
  • If a player in your party has the Deserter debuff, or is on cooldown from the Random Dungeon option, his or her character name will be displayed in the Dungeon Finder window listed as "On Cooldown," preventing the group from queuing.
  • Anyone in a dungeon party can now re-queue their group for a dungeon, as players will still be prompted whether or not to accept their chosen role.
  • Players who use the Vote Kick option will now be prompted to provide a reason for kicking a party member. This reason will be presented to everyone in the party except for the person voted to be kicked.
  • When joining as a group, more generous level requirements will be used instead of Random Dungeon level requirements so that players of different levels joining together will be eligible for a greater number of dungeons.
  • Parties randomly created via the Dungeon Finder will always be arranged in the party interface from top to bottom in the following order: tank, healer, damage, damage, damage.
  • If a random party is created via the Dungeon Finder and a player cannot roll Need on an item, a reason will now be provided.

Cataclysm Tanking Cooldowns: Feedback

Quote from: Nethaera (Source)
We’re currently working on the tanking cooldowns for tanks in Cataclysm. We’re interested in feedback from the community on what makes cooldowns fun and useful. For example, what is the sweet spot in cooldown duration between an ability with such a short cooldown that you must mash it constantly versus an ability with such a long cooldown? Which current abilities are fun? Putting aside any rose-colored glasses, were there cooldowns in Burning Crusade or classic WoW that you miss in Lich King? What, in your minds, should the role be for talents and glyphs. For example, if glyphs shouldn’t reduce cooldowns, what can they do?

We’re less interested for purposes of this specific discussion on class balance. Let’s try to keep the “who is overpowered?” discussions out of this thread. We want to focus on fun and useful with an eye towards the future.

We intend to use this feedback to help make informed decisions when designing Cataclysm talents and abilities, but this is no guarantee that we will be implementing all suggestions or any particular suggestions from this thread. This is merely one of many tools that we plan to use for making the best possible decisions about continuing development.

Thank you for your feedback.

Blue posts

Quote from Blizzard staff
Theorycrafting / Spreedshets and class balance
Spreadsheets and simulations are awesome and some of them have become quite sophisticated. There are still plenty of situations where actual players can't get anywhere close to those theoretical maximums. Now there are other situations where really exceptional players can bump up against those predicted numbers. For most players, their potential dps (in game) is a lot more relevant than what the spreadsheet says their potential dps could be.

As an example, imagine that Survival required a really punishing shot rotation. Very good players (the kind that get insane actions per second on Starcraft maybe) might eek 14,000 dps out of that rotation. Mere mortals might only get 9000 dps though. On the other hand, imagine Marks could pump out 10,000 dps for almost any level of player. If you're going by the spreadsheets alone, you'd be dumb not to play Survival. Going by your logs, you'd be dump not to play Marks (unless you're in the 1% bracket). You could come up with similar examples for one spec only beating the other with best possible gear, or one spec only beating the other on fights with no movement. And so on. (Source)

Survavibility as a DPS
Yeah, this is exactly what I was referring to. Survival does matter in terms of being able to beat the boss, and I think we would be in a better place if more dps players took some responsibility for survival instead of assuming the design was that they focus solely on dps and blame the game (or the healers) when they die. That doesn't have to mean socketing blue Stamina gems in every piece of armor. It could mean "Hey, maybe I can afford the 2 talent points for this survivability talent. That drops by maximum dps by 6%, but I'll do more damage alive than dead." (Source)

Classes homogenization and tanking niches
We try and prevent homogenization among classes when we can. It's actually very important to us and obviously more important to us than many players who would be satisfied with us just smearing critical abilities across all of the tank classes.

Having said that, we don't think well-defined tank niches are very good for the game. We've even backed off of well-defined healing niches and we'll continue to do so even more in Cataclysm. It comes down to a numbers problem. In a 5-player dungeon you get one tank. If the dungeon happens to be an AE tanking dungeon (Shattered Halls comes to mind) then groups want a paladin and not another tank. Likewise if we positioned DKs as the magic tank, they'd be underpowered on any dungeon without a lot of magic damage. Now maybe that's okay for a 5-player run, but it gets a lot trickier when you're talking about a 10-player raid with 2 tanks. When you're up against the most challenging content, you'd likely want to swap out for the best tank for the encounter, which means keeping a stable of 4 tanking classes ready to come in at a moment's notice. Some amount of swapping is hard to discourage, but we definitely don't want to design dungeons around the expectation that your paladin tank doesn't mind sitting out on the single target fights just to shine on the AE ones. She'll miss out on a lot of badges for one. Sad

It is definitely a challenge to keep classes feeling unique while giving players enough flexibility that they don't feel like they constantly have to ask their friends to reroll and / or recruit the missing puzzle pieces into their social circle. (Source)

"Perfect" DPS balance

That's not actually a goal, or a realistic one anyway. I drop that 1% number a lot because it seems sometimes that's what the expectation is. The goal is that you should be able to play what you want and still be able to raid (and ideally PvP, but we're a lot farther from that). We've always said that taking on the most challenging content is going to take away some of your flexibility, and for the most part, players capable of beating that content are okay with that level of min / maxing. In fact, they kind of enjoy it.

There's just no realistic way to have every dps spec in the game anywhere clo…

Игрокам нужно чаще расслабляться

На американских официальных форумах MMORPG World Of Warcraft от компании Blizzard Entertainment не утихают философские споры о сути игры и того, что в ней делают пользователи. Так, один из игроков поднял тему превращения игры в некий «суперспорт»: аддоны говорят, что нужно делать и когда; аддоны подбирают экипировку, камни и эффекты зачаровывания, по сути – доля участия игрока в игровом процессе становится все меньше и меньше. Давайте просто играть, призывает пользователь, а не окружать себя костылями-аддонами, с установкой которых экран WoW выглядит как кокпит современного истребителя.

На справедливое возмущение игрока отозвалась сотрудница по работе с игровым сообществом Nethaera, заметив, что ей понравился «мессадж» этого сообщения. По ее словам, игроки по своей природе обладают соревновательным духом. Очень часто они вдохновляют других следовать за ними и повторять их успехи, вынуждая последних двигаться все быстрее и быстрее – это чем-то напоминает прокладывание лыжни. Поэтому они перестают обращать внимание на декорации вокруг, фокусируясь на как можно более быстром достижении результата и взятии нового рекорда.

Сотрудница Blizzard также считает, что всем игрокам нужно время от времени «жать на тормоз» и «расслабляться». Если вы получаете фан на скорость 150 миль в час – отлично, но если нет – притормозите, откройте окно и впустите в него свежий бриз, а затем слегка нажмите на газ и просто получайте удовольствие от игры, утверждает Nethaera.

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