4. Itemization Changes
Many changes are coming to item stats in Warlords and we'll briefly touch on it here. These changes are designed to make gear more interesting and to allow for items to be relevant to a class regardless of specialization. To help achieve this, role-specific stats have been trimmed - Hit and Expertise stats have been removed from the game while Dodge and Parry stats will no longer be found on items. Bonus Armor will serve as a new stat for tanks while Spirit will exist for healers - all other secondary stats will be useful regardless of role or specialization. Three new secondary stats will be added:
- Bonus Armor which will increase Armor and Attack Power for Tanks.
- Multistrike that will allow spells and abilities to periodically fire off two additional times with 30% effectiveness for both damage and healing.
- Versatility will increase damage, healing and absorption done while reducing incoming damage.
Part of the philosophy behind the removal of Hit and Expertise is to eliminate mundane stats that feel mandatory. They made stat managing a sort of mind game by nearly forcing players to maintain a certain cap while also having to adjust and balance with the more useful (and fun) secondary stats. When a useful new item dropped it was time to do a bunch of math and consult out-of-game resources to figure out how to best maintain those caps. From the patch notes, here's a general idea of how the removal of Hit and Expertise will affect the game:
- Hit and Expertise has been removed as a secondary stat.
- Hit and Expertise bonuses on all items and item enhancements (gems, enchants, etc.) have been converted into Critical Strike, Haste, or Mastery.
- All characters now have a 100% chance to hit, 0% chance to be dodged, 3% chance to be parried, and 0% chance for glancing blows, when fighting creatures up to 3 levels higher (bosses included).
- Tanking specializations receive an additional 3% reduction in chance to be parried. Tank attacks now have a 0% chance to be parried vs. creatures up to 3 levels higher.
- Creatures that are 4 or more levels higher than the character still has a chance to avoid attacks in various ways, to discourage fighting enemies that are much stronger.
- Dual Wielding still imposes a 19% chance to miss, to balance it with two-handed weapon use.
For a more in depth explanation and philosphy behind these changes, check out the full patch notes.
5. Group Finder
The group finder is getting a wonderful addition in the form of a new Premade Group Finder. Now players can look for groups that are forming to take on a variety of tasks such as questing and legacy raids.
Players can list their characters as available for specific types of content where group leaders looking to fill their party can find you by. Group leaders can search and find players that match their group requirements and throw them an invite.
More proactively, players who find a group they would like to be a part of who also meet the requirements set by raid or party leaders can apply to join. The group leaders will then have the option of accepting or decline the applicant.
This new feature will work for both PvE and PvP content. It's entirely feasible to start or find a group focused entirely on raiding a capital city. Hopefully this new feature will be used in place of the trade chat channel making things easier and less cluttered for everyone. This tool will also make it easier to find other like-minded players - perhaps you’ll find a new group of friends who enjoy legacy raiding as much as you do!
… And Much More
These five features are only a few of the many that will make their way into the game with Patch 6.0.2 and Warlords. We’ll be talking about many of them in the coming weeks and months. For the full patch notes, click here. Which features are you excited to see? If you’ve experienced any of these changes on the PTR, which is your favorite? Let us know in the comments below!
Further Warcraft reading: