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We are very sorry we have been down for so long. Its the longest outage we have ever experienced. Apparently, our web host, while doing some annual maintenance had a firmware upgrade on their router go wrong and it died. So they have had to replace it.

We are extremely sorry about the outage. We have an action packed weekend with 2 tournaments going on, so we should just pick right back up where we left off without any other issues.

Our Apologies. Back to Top

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Arenas

The Ring of Valor - Orgrimmar.
  • Video - http://www.gamerstub...cc4ff8e11234fbf
  • Animated Platforms - Pillars that rise up at timed intervals. Trying to stay away from randomness to let it be skill based. Pillars block line of sight, you can ride up and down on pillars.
  • Dynamic Fire Hazard - Strips on the ground that damages players. On a timer. If you are CC'd on the fire you will not be killed. Designed as a choice.
  • Close Starting Positions - Start on platforms that rise up at the start.
  • New, dynamic feel to the Arenas while keeping it skill based.
  • Pillars on opposite timers as fire to force decision making
  • Landmarks on pillars and around arena to give players more ways to communicate where they are during a game.

Dalaran Sewers - Under Dalaran, the Central City for WotLK
  • Video - http://www.gamerstub...24f63a794a12e35
  • Small, to the point
  • Dynamic Water Feature - Pillar on timer that blocks LOS. If you are standing on water pillar when it turns on it knocks you back so you can't get stuck. Terming this dynamic - "area denial"
  • No mounts allowed. Travel forms will work.
  • Starting areas off-limits: Start in pipes that are elevated from the ground. Jump down into the arena at start. If you stay in at start, you get knocked out by water.

Battlegrounds

Strand of the Ancients
  • Video - http://www.gamerstub...6c3c54a0ab0c641
  • Attack/Defend Map - Destructible Buildings and Vehicles. Play both sides of the teams.
  • Time each attack run, if the other team can't defeat you in the same amount of time that team loses.
  • Increased player limit to 15v15 from 10v10
  • Doubling amount of Siege vehicles from current Beta
  • Siege Combat - Series of walls that lead to capturable objective at the top. Land on beach, get into siege engines and begin moving through the walls. If you aren't in a vehicle, you will be able to pick up and drop mines to do siege damage. 3-4 seconds where the opposite team can disarm mine. Something for everyone to do.
  • Multiple angles for attack viable. All walls have unique icon and color so players can identify and communicate where they are going.

Wintergrasp - Entire Zone PvP in Northrend
  • Huge Numbers of Players - hundreds, with siege vehicles and destructible buildings.
  • Non-Instances PVP
  • Attack/Defend Map. You have a fortress with surrounding walls. Break through walls...choose any of 30 walls to break through. Capture and then sides flip with a cooldown - currently 2.5 hours. Cooldown to allow victor to reap the benefits of winning.
  • Victor gets daily quests, portal from Dalaran to Wintergrasp, opens a unique raid instance. Archivon (raid boss), with wide select of loot - one day cooldown, open for everyone on the winning faction. All bosses around wow drop a shard for the current victor as currency to buy, mounts, gear, gems, wide variety.
  • Victor defends the next round.
  • Ranks to earn vehicles - Ensures players are contributing. Get and HK, get rank. Currently 2 Ranks required to get in a siege vehicle. Different vehicles require different ranks.
  • Vehicles still vulnerable to players. Necessity for players on the ground to defend siege weaponry.
  • Spent majority of design time ensuring servers will handle the load and play smoothly.

Whats Next - Future of PVP with Chilton
  • Revisit PvP itemization, including arena and BG rewards
  • Support all the play styles and balance the rewards from all - BGs, Non-instanced pvp, arena
  • Queue from anywhere in the Azeroth.
  • Competitive battle grounds. Potential rating system to measure individual success in BGs.
  • Potential for Guild Battlegrounds
  • Allow players to level up in Battlegrounds.

Q and A

Q: Why can't Hunter's shoot within melee rang
A: Different than a caster - not wearing mail armor. Don't want Hunter's to be able to blast away while tanking. Disengage gives a more fun mechanic than just standing there.

Q: Why Can't Pets have resilience?
A: Tuning the benefits of a pet. Find the balance to make sure its viable strategy to kill the Hunter's pet, but also costs enough to decide to kill the pet. Lost of new options to customize pets with talent points to increase defense.

Q: Will the old BGs and Arenas get a facelift with the new Dynamics?
A: Does tends to be PVP content burnout. Want to address it by making better effort to introduce new Battlegrounds.

Q: Future changes to help Paladins stay in Melee range? (Loud booing ensues!)
A: No intention to give Paladins Shadowstep or Intercept. Make sure the control that Paladins have are more useful. Glyph that increases HoJ range a lot.

Q: Population imbalance on Wintergrasp? Anything planned to balance with a Buff?
A: Buff called Tenacity. Scales based on imbalance of BG to make the smaller side stronger by scaling damage input and stops incoming damage as a percentage. Still tuning the balance.

Q: How will Ranks reset in Wintergrasp. Still get HKs while idling. How will it be fixed?
A: No forced grouping, so you would have to be in a group that carries you and feeds you the HKs. Rank will reset each battle for Wintergrasp

Q: Ring of Valor. With fire, will range be an immediate benefit.
A: Visual Queues for fire (gears and doors opening). Can certainly shoot through the fire as a ranged class

Q: Balance for Druid PVP. Resto overpowered, how can you lower Restos effectiveness without hurting Balance or Feral
A: Changes with WotLK going to be very different balance. Does not look like Druids will be the dominant force they are now in WotLK, especially in the lower brackets.

Q: Any plans to remove or balance racials in arenas?
A: Make sure they don't change rules of Arena too much or it feels like it isn't part of World of Warcraft. We have already limited consumables, to take that burden off each match. With WotLK arena is going to change a lot and we are certainly watching the role racials play. If it continues to be a problem in WotLK, they will address it in the future.

Q:  As a healer, in a BG that doesn't force grouping you just have to spam target other players on your team to see if they need healing. Is there any way to give healers a way to heal more effectively in that situation?
A: Avoiding that for the time being. Grouping system only supports 40 players ATM. And that would need to be addressed before any mechanic like that is added. Back to Top

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We're sitting at the Diablo III gameplay panel and will be documenting the key features. After sitting down and playing some with Rapture and Frst, I can assure you that it is going to be awesome.

Diablo III Design Goals
Stay true to Diablo experience. Has the same feel of the existing games.
Moment to moment action should feel exciting and important.
Diablo is an Action RPG, and we want to expand the RPG experience.
New rune system for augmenting skills.

Spirit of Diablo
Make it replayable more than just randomness (items, maps, etc.)
Large scale boss battles.
Focus on cooperative play, making it easy for people to jmup in and out.

Replayability
Random Environments.
Random Monster Encounters.
Randomly Generated Items.
Higher Difficulty Levels (Nightmare, Hell, and more?)
New Feature: Random Adventures.

Epics Heroes
Large scale combat putting as many monsters on the screen as possible that you can pile into the dirt.
All classes will be incredibly powerful, unique, and approached in a new way.

Approachable
Easy to play (If you can click a mouse)
Easy to learn, but difficult to master.

Cooperative Play
Battle.NET - New version that should make it easier to play together.
It should be easier to hop in a game with your friends at any time.

Improved Controls
Less Spam, More Depth.
New Type of Monster (Not specified)

New Hotbar
Removed potions as primary health mechanic.
Replaced potions with a skill hotbar.
Better gameplay, less mouse clicking wrist pain.

New Health System
Goal is to remove things from D2 that made it too easy (potion spamming).
Very little downtime.
Monsters drop globes of health that you run over to restore health.
Health globes automatically heal nearby teammates.

Monsters - Force Players to Make Choices
Berserker - Aggressive Creature, Massive Charge up Attack, Vulnerable on a Miss.
Skeletal Shieldbearer - Slow and methodical but tough, Accompanies ranged units, Acts as a health wall for more threatening units, Shield can be destroyed or circumvented.

Better RPG
Improve story without losing the ability to hop into a game easily.
Remove the generic feeling from random dungeons.
Bring the world to life through events, better quests, and npc interactions.

New Adventure System
Solution to the fact that scripted events don't work with random environments.
Smaller scale encounters that randomly occur.
Each play through can feel different as you won't always get the same adventures.

Question and Answers

Q:Will there be a hardcore mode?
A: Yes, definitely.

Q: Will there be talent respecs?
A: Yeah, we definitely want to have talent respecs this time around. Details have not been worked out yet.

Q: How will the economy work in Diablo 3?
A: I think the D2 (SoJs) economy turned out the way it did because of the gold cap and how much gold the mods dropped. We want the gold you have to be meaningful. We want players to be able to use gold as a trade currency, but no details at the moment.

Q: What kind of PvP system will be in place?
A: Diablo II system didn't work. They don't have a solution yet but plan to come up with that satisfies both PvE and PvP focused players.

Q: Are you going to removed the complete immunity system?
A: Class builds are going to have much more variety so that immunity will no longer be a problem. This means immunity will most likely still be in the game to incentivize you to build a more diverse character.

Q: How will the scramble for loot work?
A: Loot is per person specific. If you can see it, only you can loot it. Something drops for everyone. Items can still be traded per characters. Loot dropped can be seen by everyone.

Q: Will we need to stack magic find and run bosses over and over to get loot?
A: Magic find will continue to exist. We want to make it so you can still get good loot without running the same boss over and over.

Q: Will there be special achievements by your name to show you have beaten the game on hell mode?
A: Yes, we will do something.

Q: Will all classes have as much environmental interaction as the wizard?
A: I think the answer is yes. Every class is different, but the wizard does feel a bit more destruction. Later on all classes start getting something for interacting with the environment.

Q: How many players for coop?
A: We are finding that 4 is about the perfect number to prevent the gameplay from becoming too chaotic. Still up in the air though.

Q: Is there going to be a ranger or something?
A: Wirt and the Cow King are the other two classes.

Q: Any way to customize the appearance of your character?
A: We tried hair changes, skin tone, etc. You can't really tell because the character is so small. We don't really have an incentive to keep those systems in. We want to create more permutations in the looks as we aren't really happy with the level of customization in the game.

Q: Diablo I felt more fragile than Diablo II. What will Diablo III feel like?
A: We see Diablo III as a blend of both games as there are things from both that we like. We changed several things such as the health system to help give the "I'm trapped in a dungeon with a lot of monsters around" feeling.

Q: How will Diablo III multiplayer differ from single player?
A: We're not focusing on persistence as a primary goal. It makes the drop in and out coop play harder to achieve. We do want to make the world feel like it is transitioning. There will be big milestone events where the world changes.

Q: Is there a crafting system similar to the Horadric Cube?
A: I'm not going to say yes or no. We are exploring an item creation mechanic. The Horadric Cube was actually kind of annoying of a mechanic. We want to make a mechanic that is better. More space in the inventory and ways to upgrade it.

Q: How do we make sure players diversify what stats they use?
A: I don't think it is possible to make sure every class wants every stats. We want to make sure every stat is useful across all classes.

Q: Are there still super rare items?
A: Yes. Randomly generated items are still at the core of the game.

Q: Will security be ramped up?
A: We will have much better security.

Q: Will there be raid encounters?
A: Goes against what we want. Maybe we could see end game content, but we won't have WoW style raiding where character classes have roles. Raid system really doesn't fit the Diablo style of having all dps classes.

Q: Will there be an auction house?
A: Auction houses are cool, but might make items too accessible. We do want a trading system that is appropriate for Diablo.

Q: Will Battle.NET remain free?
A: We don't have a strong desire to make Battle.NET be a subscription service. We do plan to monetize it somehow. It shouldn't feel like a bad thing to the players.

Q: Will items become soulbound?
A: No there will not be a bind system. We want players to be able to trade items freely. There might be quest items that bind, but we really don't want to.

Q: Are there ways to do damage once you run out of mana?
A: We want the game to be fast paced so that you don't sit around with no mana a lot. We want to have skill based ways to actively get mana back. If you have to step back for mana it is for a couple of seconds, not minutes.

Q: Will there be synergy between spells or combos?
A: We want to make sure no one spell dominates. We want to have a mix between buffs and actives. Example: Witch doctor summons creatures and he can cast plague on them. Back to Top
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