Can you sell things on the AH and just not buy things or no AH at all?
Topic Tuesday - Missing the forest for the AV's
PVP, What a Grind
There's a sickness that has spread on the more competitive servers. The quest for honor and ranking has turned one of the best aspects of the game - PVP, into one of the worst. It's a simple problem. With how the system is structured, AV is the most efficient honor grind. And since all servers on each region share queues there can't be a serverwide decision to control how honor is ground out or to cap it. With that situation everyone is stuck firmly inside the prisoner's dilemma. The grind is horrible and I don't see it getting better unless Blizzard changes the structure of the system or the balance of honor gained.
Unfortunately we are working against the player's modern outlook on the game - namely that everyone always will take the most efficient method to their goal, regardless of the fun factor. And the second modern outlook is the extreme quest for optimization, which I will go into here. Hopefully maybe I can try to convince some of you to relax, chill out a little and actually try to enjoy the game before you burn yourself out completely or have actual negative health effects because of how you did the honor grind.
Extreme Server Competition
Some servers, especially the more populated and competitive ones have extreme numbers involved in what is needed to push ranks. Obtaining rank 14 is an insane amount of work that seriously concerns me about what someone needs to do physically to make it happen (presuming they don't bot their way there). But setting 14 aside, ranks 13, 12, 11, or even 10 have crazy competition. It is way more than it ever was in Vanilla on any server. We are talking grinds 7 days a week for over half the day or even more. This isn't casual. It's not even hardcore. It's just nuts. Rank 10 isn't even that high but you still have to do that level of grind to get it? What???
Competition even for Mid Ranks
So let's talk about rank 10. The reason people go for it is because it unlocks the helm and shoulders for the blue pvp items. And well, some of those set bonuses are really good. Higher ranks unlocks different items which then gives more slot options for which pieces to use for optimizing sets. And it is especially true for warriors. Of course warriors are just sliiiightly competitive aren't they.
An optimized set will take advantage of the 2 piece bonus because that is a lot of AP to tap into. But all you need is 2 pieces. Do you really need rank 10 for the helm and shoulder options? For helm you are already going to be wearing Lionheart so rank 10 is only about the shoulders. Well let's compare.
Looking at an example set with PVP or BWL gear specifically for the slots in question, here's a gear set that doesn't use the PVP shoulders.
Up to Rank 8
And now lets see the set with shoulders that requires rank 10.
Requires Rank 10
So effectively because of the shoulders we can now juggle the Drake Talon Pauldrons over to Chromatic Boots. Here's the breakdown for stat difference:
Rank 8 --> Rank 10
- 14 AP
- 0.55% Crit
- 1% Hit
It's definitely an upgrade. How worth it is it to grind to get it? It's a personal question. But just keep in mind the crazy amount of time and mental energy you are going through for it. There's also a large opportunity cost too. You could be leveling alts which means more profession options. You could be grinding for gold for consumables. To me it's not worth it, but I don't do hardcore grinds like that for minimal return. For you it might be different. Don't get blinded by the absolute BIS of a situation and push yourself too far and hate the game and yourself by doing it. Just keep in mind the perspective of what you gain and how much effort it will take to get it. And don't ruin the game for yourself just to do it the absolutely most efficient way!
Paid Server Transfers are now LIVE!
Blizzard has announced that they will now allow paid server transfers for Classic realms.
- 90 day cooldown
- Gold transfer cap based on level
- Level 1-30: 100g
- Level 31-50: 500g
- Level 51-60: 2000g
- Players who are on PvE or RP realms cannot transfer to PvP or RPPvP realms.
To do a transfer you can launch the service by clicking on the Shop button on the Character Select screen.
Topic Tuesday - Blinded by BIS part 2
This is a continuation on the topic Blinded by BIS. See Part 1.
So we know that gear is important and everyone is shooting to get to BIS for each tier. It's a great goal and one that most won't get 100% on. Most people get to half or mostly BIS. Only a few will actually be fully BIS in every single slot. Until you are perfectly BIS you have to worry about adjusting your gear to match the stats that you currently have. Spreadsheets and gear tools are the biggest help here (we have one incoming very soon!).
Why BIS Items are so Important
There is a good reason why BIS is so important. Some slots lend themselves to being more valued than others, and also some items with their very specific stats cause them to be unusually important despite their relative lack of strength throughout the tiers. Often these items are ones with hit stats such as Truestrike Shoulders, Band of Accuria, Drake Fang Talisman, or the Devilsaur Armor set. As you can see these all provide 2% hit. Why is that so special? Well because now instead of trying to shoehorn in 2 items with 1% hit, now you can free up an entire item slot to have no hit instead. There are many many fantastic items that have very good itemization - but they don't have hit and it makes it challenging to utilize them as melee when you are working toward or floating around hit cap.
Some classes are more prone to problems with this than others. Warriors have a bit of an easier time because they have access to Lionheart Helm which just has unbelievable itemization especially for being available at the beginning of the game. Other items are arguably BIS but it is far more about their ranking as such than what they provide to the user's end stats. Hit (both melee and spell) is usually the stat most affecting builds and to a lesser extent crit. Other stats are mostly about the basic concept of more = better. Most items fall in the basic stat increase category which leads to the point of this article.
So here's where my discussion and frustrations come out. People are fixated on what is BIS. Often it is far more about what the piece of gear is than the benefit the gear provides. What am I talking about? How much DKP or convincing would a rogue go through to try to acquire Bloodfang Boots to upgrade from his Nightslayer Boots? Hopefully not a lot. Because the damage dealing stats compared to these two items is virtually identical. It's +6 str, -1 agi swing when looking at the pure dps stats. That is nothing!
Here's another example: every healer is drooling to be able to get Cauterizing Band but lets compare it to the previous BIS ring Fordring's Seal. Now it's better in every way. There's no question there but what exactly does it impart to your character's bottom line? +9 heal, +7 int, and +5 stam. This is pretty similar to having a libram enchant or not. The difference is minor and is hardly a make or break issue for a healer for topping meters. Giving a top healer Caut band is much more about the feel good than to the short term benefit of the raid.
Now of course the whole point of upgrades is that they aren't earth shattering. I get it. And to give lots of loot to lots of people slowly but surely increases the entire raid's strength. That's exactly the point. But my point is that these Best In Slot items generate a lot of drama. Who gets what first and how upgrades are dolled out is serious business that can literally rip guilds apart. and the upgrade value is not even worth squabbling about when looking at the big picture.
Patch 2.5: Battlegrounds, Elemental Invasions, and the Keyring coming Dec 10!
Patch 2.5 on Dec 10
Blizzard has announced more details of their newest Classic patch, set to drop with the reset on December 10. The highlights include:
Warsong Gulch and Alterac Valley
We will be able to queue up for these battlegrounds at their respective BG entrances as well as directly with the battlemasters in capital cities.
The battlegrounds are cross-realm with battlegroups based on your region. How this plays out will still have some questions as Oceanic and South American specific servers lists are very limited. Will these servers get rolled up into simply a West and East server group? Regardless it seems like PvE and PvP servers will commingle together.
We will now have elemental invasions taking place in Azeroth. Hopefully this will help some of the elemental material prices a bit!
Finally! we have our keyring. Bank slots rejoice! The keyring can hold up to 32 unique keys. Lets hope that the keybar addons will already have this working...
Future Paid Transfers?
Paid character transfers client support has been added in game. The feature is not available however Blizzard is hinting that this is coming. More info on that will come down the line.
Full patch notes
With scheduled weekly maintenance in each region, we will update WoW Classic to version 1.13.3, which includes several updates to the game. We will deploy this patch with weekly maintenance starting at 7:00 a.m. PST (10:00 a.m. EST) on Tuesday, December 10.
World of Warcraft Classic Version 1.13.3
The fields of battle are open, and the Alliance and Horde are set to clash over Warsong Gulch and Alterac Valley.
Warsong Gulch is a 10v10 game of capture-the-flag, with each faction attempting to carry their opponents’ flag all the way back to their own base, while preventing the opposition from doing the same. Players fight in level-ranges in Warsong Gulch: 10-19, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, and level 60.
Alterac Valley is a large 40v40 tug-of-war zone, with many quests, objectives, and areas of interest. All players at level 51 and higher are placed into a single level-range in this epic struggle, with rewards via reputation as well as quest rewards. Some Alterac Valley rewards are highly sought, such as Don Julio’s Band, Lei of the Lifegiver, and Ice Threaded Arrows/Bullets.
The Alliance entrance to Warsong Gulch is in Silverwing Grove in Ashenvale Forest, and the Horde entrance is near Mor’shan Base Camp in the northern Barrens. The Alliance and Horde entrances to Alterac Valley are in northern Hillsbrad Foothills. Both Warsong Gulch and Alterac Valley can also be entered by speaking with the appropriate battlemaster in your capital city.
Battlegrounds are cross-realm, which means you’ll fight alongside allies and against opponents from all of the realms in your region.
Across Kalimdor, Blazing, Thundering, Watery, and Whirling Invaders now occasionally appear in Un’goro Crater, Azshara, Winterspring, and Silithus respectively. The elementals appear to be seeing just how far into these territories they can penetrate before being beaten back by the forces of the Horde or the Alliance.
The key button in your micro menu now opens your Keyring, an additional bag for keys only, that scales up to hold 32 keys.
The lua API has been modified 1.7k to prevent some addons from using communications channels in ways that are contrary to the spirit of the game.
This patch includes client support for the Paid Character Transfer service, which may be enabled at a future date.
The World of Warcraft Classic executable file on your PC has been renamed.
RE: Arcane mage playstyle/viability
One thing I saw someone theorize is a mana regeneration technique with arcane. Now that we have classic test it out and fill us in. The idea is that you can pair an arcane missile set with a pyroblast. On private servers mana only ticked at the beginning of arcane missiles, and of course at the end of pyroblast. So the theory went that if you did them together then you actually get outside of the 5 second window for two to three ticks. I think they called it arcane weaving to give it a name. The question with it is: does arcane missiles pull the mana at the beginning or does the channeling have the rule kick in only at the end of the cast like other spells?
Topic Tuesday - Blinded by BIS part 1
This is one of those long lasting issues that was something I had blinders on for too long and it took some hard numbers for me to admit to the truth. With that short caveat let me explain what I'm talking about.
Everyone wants to be BIS
It's no secret that WoW is a game about gear. We might lie to ourselves and say that it's a social game and we do it for the PvP or the dungeons or the raids but the bottom of the line is, if you aren't getting new gear then it's a short path to no longer logging in. Stagnation in the game means people stop playing and the ultimate stagnation is when you have no gear to aspire to. So we all want to get the best gear possible which led to the idea of looking at what is the best item that can be obtained for your class for that slot, aka best in slot (BIS). Once you have that list of items, now you have a list of goals to achieve and people spend endless hours working on that list attempting to get to that point.
I myself have spent countless hours developing said lists and tools (soon tm) because I like to see upgrade options and enjoy exploring the odd items that Classic has in it. If you haven't seen them, here's the two I did for tanking.
Druid Tank BIS
BIS is not static
But in making these BIS lists I didn't and still don't like the idea of "BIS" as an all encompassing thing. There's too much variation in how buffs work and encounters from a basic standpoint to have a fixed list. Also and more importantly, BIS changes depending on what you have in your other slots. People's specific single BIS list is all well and good but it's tailored to itself. If you don't have every. single. piece. then there very well may be and are items that are actually better for you that you should know about. An easy example is hit. If you don't have hit cap or the items on the list that correspond to conveniently be exactly the hit cap you need, then your set isn't performing optimally.
If you want to be performing optimally you should take a smart approach to your gear and always look at how to optimize your set with what you have but also see it for what it is - a constantly moving answer depending on your encounter and setup. Only you can can know how long your guild takes to kill bosses, how much down time between pulls there is and the consumes needed to get the job done. These numbers will help you understand how to value stats like intellect for more burst mana needs vs pure Spell Power or even MP5. See the MP5 Topic Tuesday for more on that.
When you have a handle on your encounter you can start to make sense of the kinds of gear to shoot for. Don't stick with the set BIS list people show you. Explore what else is out there and what options you can look for that can adjust to your play style and your guild's raid style. At that point you will be in control of actually understanding what is BIS for yourself rather than copying what someone else says is best.