Category: WoW News

The official PTR notes for the upcoming World of Warcraft patch 5.1 have been posted by Blizzard. I commented on patch 5.1’s changes in a previous post, but wanted to highlight a few other announcements now that we have confirmed details.

Scenarios

In a semi-hidden announcement, there will be a “Black Temple” Scenario. This is one of the things that I have wanted in the game for so long: the ability to experience raid content with a smaller group. I spent weeks farming old world raids and dungeons before my hiatus. I was completing tier sets left and right, getting achievements, and valuable loot for folks leveling up or stashing away Transmog gear.

There are no written details yet about this particular Scenario, but an image was put up on MMO Champion, along with other Scenario maps.

Black Temple Scenario Image from MMO Champion

General

Two new factions will be added for the Pandaren Campaign: “Operation: Shieldwall” for Alliance and “Dominance Offensive” for Horde. Players will be able to slay opposing faction NPCs to earn commissions that will upgrade their own faction’s base. This reminds me a lot of Halaa in Nagrand, which became abandoned fairly early on during The Burning Crusade.

Pet Battles

Battle Stones will be introduced to the game. These are bind-on-equip tokens that can be used to upgrade the quality of pets by individual pet or pet class. Battle Stones will be obtainable as a “drop” from a pet battle and from completing quests from pet trainers.

The in-game Pet Journal also gets a decent overhaul, allowing for the viewing of pet rarity level, the addition of advanced filtering options, and the ability to show where various pets are from. For example, you’ll be able to filter by a particular zone, and view all the pets you have and, more importantly, don’t have.

A couple of other interesting changes regarding pets and the Darkmoon Faire were announced. Pet Battle daily quests will be added to the Dark Moon Faire, rewarding players with a new pet, the Darkmoon Eye. Additionally, two new battle pets will be added to Darkmoon Island and can be captured and added to your Pet Journal.

Brawler’s Guild

More details about this super secret, underground brawling society have been revealed. Kind of. What we know is you will be able to fight NPCs in some way in some kind of PvE environment. To me, this is Pet Battles for folks that don’t want to play Pet Battles, or admit that they play and enjoy Pet Battles. As with most features in the game, rewards and achievements will be yours as you “level up” through the Brawler’s Guild. Most importantly, “If this is your first night at Brawler’s Guild, you have to fight.”

 

The first major content update for the World of Warcraft expansion Mists of Pandaria will be available in the upcoming patch 5.1. According to Blizzard, patch 5.1 will be available on the test realms “soon” (as in “Blizzard Soon™”).

Here is an outline of the content features that will be made available in MoP 5.1:

Pandaria and the War of Conquest

New quest hubs will be placed throughout Pandaria, giving Horde and Alliance new faction-based daily quests. These quests will further engage players in the potential battle over who will ultimately control Pandaria.

While members of the Horde and the Alliance have been busy exploring the exotic continent of Pandaria, Garrosh and Varian have been gathering their forces in preparation for the struggle to exert the influence of the Horde and the Alliance over these long-lost lands. Players who have quested through Pandaria will find Horde and Alliance expeditions arriving in force on the shores of the unspoiled continent, bringing the tensions between these factions to the fore. New daily quest hubs and faction reputations will be available to adventurers eager to do their part in the brewing conflict.

Brawler’s Guild

WoW Fight Club!! This appears to be a hybrid PvE/PvP experience, offering players a chance to fight non-player “creatures” one-on-one. It could also be similar to what pet battles are for your pets… except this time you join the skirmish yourself.

Underground fighting rings have sprung up in Stormwind and Orgrimmar that will give brawlers a chance to earn bragging rights by testing their solo PvE mettle against some of the toughest creatures found in World of Warcraft. The first rule of brawls is you don’t talk about brawls. The second rule…

Pet Battles Improvements

The Pet Battle interface will see some changes in the upcoming 5.1 patch. One of the more interesting feature enhancements will be an option to upgrade the “rarity” of pets that you’ve captured.

Several UI and other improvements will be added to the Pet Battles system, including a way to upgrade the rarity of pets that you’ve captured.

Item Upgrades

Blizzard continues to try and find ways to reduce the number of items in the game. One new way will be providing players the option to “improve” their current gear using Valor Points. Similar to Enchanting, players will be able to permanently upgrade the item level and stats on their gear.

You will be able to spend Valor Points to improve the item level and quality of gear you already own.

The Quest Continues

Did someone say Legendaries? Yes, that’s right, additional quests and content will be added to the game that will grant players opportunities to experience epic storylines that end with Legendary-level rewards.

Wrathion is keenly interested in the conflict exploding between the factions on Pandaria’s southern shore. He’s sure to have additional tasks for players to complete as they continue their quest for Legendary gear.

Source: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/blog/7481208

Originally posted on May 9, 2008.

News about the next expansion to World of Warcraft (titled “Wrath of the Lich King”) broke last night: Details on Death Knightsvideos of the new zones, and the continuation of the token reward system. One particular item has my appetite for the expansion completely wet though: all raids in the expansion will be tuned and made available to both groups of 10 and 25 playersWorldofwar.net reported about this after their presentation at Blizzard headquarters with Blizzard’s Jeff Kaplan:

At this point, Kaplan revealed the massive news that Blizzard are changing the way raids are done in Northrend, and making them similar to the 5 man instances, whereby they can be played on two levels of difficulty. All 25 man raids will also be available as 10 man raids. The loot tables will be completely different, the 25 man raids will have better and/or more loot, but this means that most players will get to see the end game content in the 10 man version, if not the 25 man one. He went on to explain the reasons behind this; Karazhan, the 10 man instance in the Burning Crusade, was the most popular instance in the game by far. The 10 man dungeons are obviously popular due to the fewer amount of players needed, and the easier difficulty level. Secondly, a lot of 25 man raiding guilds did not like to have to go through the 10 man raids to get access to the 25 man raids. This new system should please everybody (but I’m certain there will be the usual QQers!). Another interesting fact is that the 10 man raids and the 25 man raids will be on totally separate cool downs. This means that once a guild has completed the 25 man Naxxramas for example, they could go back and complete the 10 man version of it on the same day if they wish.

Hearing this has totally enhanced my anticipation for the expansion! How cool will it be to be able to experience all the game has to offer with groups of 5 (quests/dungeons/heroics) and 10 people (raids)? I’ve been reading about the arguments for “epic” raids, where certain bosses (like the Lich King) shouldn’t be made available for only 10 people. My thoughts are just the opposite: defeating a boss or completing a difficult quest chain with a smaller group feels more epic to me.

In a group of 25 (or think back to 40-person groups), your role and class is one of many. There are typically 2-4 tanks, 5-6 healers, many DPSers, etc. Yes, what you are attempting to defeat has a higher number of HPs, but it doesn’t feel more difficult or epic than a challenging objective with fewer people.

I’m so excited after reading this! It’s a great solution that caters to people that want to group up in large numbers or small. Great job, Blizzard!