WoW Patch 5.2 Is Out Now, Raid Designer Talks Thunder King

| 5 Mar 2013 17:00

Killing World Bosses Softly

Greg Tito: Did you also work on the world bosses that Blizzard is adding for Patch 5.2?

Ion Hazzikostas: Yes. We have Nalak and Oondasta, two outdoor raid bosses that are in the 5.2 patch.

Greg Tito: I saw the big changes that it's going to be faction tapping, in which everyone who helps to kill a boss from the same faction (Horde or Alliance) will be able to loot from the corpse once it's killed. How do you think that will change the psychology of how taking down these bosses goes?

Ion Hazzikostas: I think mainly, it's just going to hopefully remove some of the more obnoxious elements currently where, particularly early on in the patch when they're very competitive sought after kill targets you have people actively trying really hard to get the tap. I think the idea of tapping is something that makes a lot of sense when you have individual mobs in a quest area and there's a couple of people trying to kill mobs for their quest, "Oh okay I hit this one first, this is mine. You hit that one first, it's yours." That's how claiming it works. But when you have some of the situations we saw early in Mists of Pandaria this past October where you have sixty players standing on a spot on the ground spamming AOE spells hoping that if the boss bombs they'll be the one to tap it first. That's just clunky and cumbersome so we'd like to focus on combat against the boss itself and have it feel more co-operative. On PvP servers certainly you're not going to be co-operating with the opposite faction. If they have the tap and you wipe out the AllIonce group that has the tap, well now your Horde group has the tap because that's just how it works. We don't want you to feel like players of the same faction are your enemies.

Greg Tito: That makes sense. Do you think that that will lead to more calls to arms in the major cities to try and take down a boss once it's spawned?

Ion Hazzikostas: It's potentially. Nalak respawns fairly frequently so in that sense I think players who want to fight him and want to defeat him will be able to. I think you'll just generally see people want to fight him going to the area where he spawns and you won't necessarily have the case where you have people that aren't in the group but are kind of begging for an invite because they can't quite fit into the group, they'll just join in and participate in the encounter. The other world boss Oondasta is a bit more off the beaten path, he's on a new island off the North coast of Kun-Lai Summit and he's much more challenging. His surrounding are actually full of elite mobs in something that's more of a throwback to some of the vanilla days, like Lord Kazak and green dragons. So we don't expect quite as much player traffic in those areas. That's really intended to be more for the organized group, the first guild on the server that notices the boss is up and gets the raid group there and less for casuals.

Greg Tito: How will the cross-server mechanics work with the world bosses?

Ion Hazzikostas: In order to fight Nalak you have to have fully unlocked the outdoor progression on the Isle of Thunder. That's sort of a server wide progression. You can't loot Nalak if you're travelling to a different server. Specifically out of the concern that as soon as one server opens up this boss we don't want to see players from all the other servers congregating, flocking this one server and overwhelming it just to get the loot from the boss that isn't accessible on their home server. Once your home server's unlocked him fight him there, we don't expect him to be super competed over just because he respawns fairly frequently like Sha of Anger, if you missed him wait fifteen minutes, twenty minutes, it'll respawn you can fight him again.

Greg Tito: Oondasta is going to be something similar?

Ion Hazzikostas: Potentially, currently there isn't any cross server restriction there. You can only loot the boss once a week and we don't necessary foreclose the possibility of, you have a real ID or a Battletag friend on your friend's list and you're looking to fill out the last few spots in your raid you invite him in to come help you. That's good, that's fun gameplay. If we see it being abused at all in the sense of guilds intentionally going to other servers to snipe their Oondasta kills we may take some action there but hopefully we think that won't necessarily play out so we're going to keep an eye on it.

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I've heard that LFR won't be brought in for these raids until weeks afterwords which must be really annoying for those stuck on the numerous empty servers.

I agree with Doomsdaylee's comments on the pets.

Doomsdaylee:
I'm surprised anyone cares anymore, since they bastardized WoW so bad.
Fucking Activison, Spyro wasn't enough, you have to turn WoW into baby's first handholding adventure?

I could deal with removal of branching spec trees.
I could deal with the gutting of the hunter system, and GIVING Warlock's their pets.
I could deal with the quest helper.
I could deal with being able to hit lv 30 in under a week.
I could even deal with the fucking pandas.
But when they started giving Druids cat at lv 6, and Warlocks FUCKING METAMORPH at lv 10, not to mention COMPLETELY gutting the talent trees?
Fuck you, call me when you stop pandering (Pun unintended) to the lil bitches who can't do a damn thing without you doing all the work for them.

TL;dr:
Fuck activision.

Spoken like someone who hasn't Raided or RankBG'd/Arena'd in this expansion. I used my glyphs and talent changing abilities on close to every boss to see what works. It was hella fun. I'm just burnt at the moment and unlike SOME I can manage to tell when the problem is my waning interest and not 'ERMERGERD dis game SUX is so eezee mode now for babies'.
You may get your skills earlier and easier, but clearly mastering them is a chore for many since LFR still experiences wipes and tards aplenty.

It's not any easier. It's CONVENIENCE. It's taking out what doesn't need to exist and replacing it with actual challenge. Hard Mode raiding is still hard. Challenge modes are impossible for your average player. PvP needs balancing but when does it not. Content is still fresh and interesting. The stories on Pandaria are up there with some of the best of BC and Wrath and beyond. You lost interest or your friends lost interest and you and moved on.
Thats. O.K.A.Y. You don't have to have a little temper tantrum and justification session about it.

Anyway this patch had amazing build up but the Heroics in 5.0-5.1 were SO Draining (Sha of Fear can go hump a rusty pike). I need a break. So I'll be rejoining the flock much later in 5.2 or even 5.3.

anthony87:
And my crappy guild still hasn't even tried to do Mogu'shan Vaults on Normal......

You're probably better off for it, my guild is just constantly smashing our faces against Heart of Fear now and making no progress (We did manage to clear Terrace of Endless Spring though, so yay), and now with this patch released we get to spend the next five weeks or so wiping endlessly against the first two bosses in a new raid. And then six weeks or so after that slowly making progress until we can blow through the whole thing in an hour and it all gets really boring and monotonous because there's no point in going back to the previous tier of raids.

I love WoW, but I'm really burnt out on how they've been releasing content since Wrath. I get that creating and balancing new raids is probably a ton of work, but when they've only got an average of about five-seven bosses, there's only one raid that gets released for content patches, and there's months and months in between content patches, it gets really tiring.

EDIT: Ulduar is still probably one of my favorite raids, because it actually had variety and the hard-modes were naturally implemented along with the boss fights rather than just being a switch toggle (except Mimiron). Even Icecrown Citadel, as nerfed as it got and as boring as the layout was, still had a decent number of different encounters.

I'm wondering how many subs WOW has now. Really I lost interest after WTLK, but did pop back for Cata. I never picked up Pandaria. But even hardcore WOWers I know have stopped playing (most seemed annoyed by Pandaria's new mechanics) and moved onto Guildwars2.
When even the hardcore fans start dropping, it has to dent WOWs subscriptions.

Doomsdaylee:
I'm surprised anyone cares anymore, since they bastardized WoW so bad.
Fucking Activison, Spyro wasn't enough, you have to turn WoW into baby's first handholding adventure?

I could deal with removal of branching spec trees.
I could deal with the gutting of the hunter system, and GIVING Warlock's their pets.
I could deal with the quest helper.
I could deal with being able to hit lv 30 in under a week.
I could even deal with the fucking pandas.
But when they started giving Druids cat at lv 6, and Warlocks FUCKING METAMORPH at lv 10, not to mention COMPLETELY gutting the talent trees?
Fuck you, call me when you stop pandering (Pun unintended) to the lil bitches who can't do a damn thing without you doing all the work for them.

TL;dr:
Fuck activision.

What does "giving warlocks their pets" even mean? And I'm glad lvling is easier. The entire game is based around end game. And gutting the talent trees? You mean actually giving useful talents that DO something other than just "increase X stat by 5%"?

So tired of hearing the talent argument. I change my talents multiple times in a day depending on the situation whether it's dungeons, raids or arenas. Unlike back in the day where I had a cookie cutter spec I got off EJ. Only people who ever changed their talents on the old system were min/max junkies.

But please, don't return to the game. It's better off without people raging over nothing.

I like this expansion its up there with TBC. Although i've gone a little off the boil of late, maybe this patch will get me back in the game. Shame we(my guild) only cleared one of the three dungeons fully on heroic oh my feats of strength QQ.

I may return when they go entirely free to play, my wallet can't handle the subscription fee right now.

also, I'm still kinda bitter about what they did to Illidan and Arthas, and Cataclysm looked kinda boring, but still, the game pulls on my Warcraft 3 and early WoW strings, and that's probably enough to keep my attention for a little while.

Doomsdaylee:
I'm surprised anyone cares anymore, since they bastardized WoW so bad.
Fucking Activison, Spyro wasn't enough, you have to turn WoW into baby's first handholding adventure?

I could deal with removal of branching spec trees.
I could deal with the gutting of the hunter system, and GIVING Warlock's their pets.
I could deal with the quest helper.
I could deal with being able to hit lv 30 in under a week.
I could even deal with the fucking pandas.
But when they started giving Druids cat at lv 6, and Warlocks FUCKING METAMORPH at lv 10, not to mention COMPLETELY gutting the talent trees?
Fuck you, call me when you stop pandering (Pun unintended) to the lil bitches who can't do a damn thing without you doing all the work for them.

TL;dr:
Fuck activision.

Nothing you mention their was fun or challenging, you seem to think that leveling was the be all and end all of WoW, WoW is based 100% around its end game, leveling is just story to build. I leveled up in classic on 5 chars, it was not hard, it was long, even on a class like balance (no Moonkin form for a while back then) was not a challenge to level with, it was just time consuming, the only difficulty lay in not over pulling and killing creeps one by one, Time is not difficult.

But if i must dissect your argument, Leveling up to level 20 as a druid with none of you main damage ability's was not a difficult or FUN (that odd word again) thing, it was a pointless time wall set their just to slow you down. Making you wait 80 levels for a cool down (the old Metamorth for 'Locks is in no way shape or form related to the new one, If you can wipe the tears of rage away from you face and look into it, its now a main mechanic of the spec and not just a damage cooldown), the "gutting" of hunters, as compared to the one button macro mashing of TBC, back then hunters were so hard i finished a BT, Hyjal and 3/6 Sunwell with only the use of my mouse with 3 extra buttons and still came out on top of DPS. Hunters have never been better to play. You can disable the quest helper. The branching trees was fun until EJ or AJ created a cookie cutter build, then "yay" get to spec the same as everyone else.

I have no idea what you mean by gave Warlocks their pets.

Outside of Raiding WoW, even back in classic WOW was never hard (ok I'll give you v1 TBC heroics but that was 100% a gear check and not at all skill based), it was grind, a faux difficulty used to trick people into thinking they were doing something hard, It was not hard to kill 50 merlocks without an overpull. Demon souls is not hard because it takes a while, Waiting for the Render bar is not the hard part of film making. Complaining about the difficulty of end game raids (Wrath had this issue with T7 and 9) or the laziness of design (Dragon Soul can burn in a pit) or even PVP balance is a Fair point, but you are just barking at the moon about 5% of the total time you'll spend playing the game, Sorry this game is not Everquest, other Everquest like games are available, I'd suggest EverQuest.

But still no, sorry you were mad at the people that made Call of Duty, Ill let you rant, I hate kill streak bonuses too.

Is it just me, or does this guy look like Mumm-Ra, the Ever-Living from the old thundercats cartoon?

I'm surprised anyone cares anymore, since they bastardized WoW so bad.
Fucking Activison, Spyro wasn't enough, you have to turn WoW into baby's first handholding adventure?

I could deal with removal of branching spec trees.
I could deal with the gutting of the hunter system, and GIVING Warlock's their pets.
I could deal with the quest helper.
I could deal with being able to hit lv 30 in under a week.
I could even deal with the fucking pandas.
But when they started giving Druids cat at lv 6, and Warlocks FUCKING METAMORPH at lv 10, not to mention COMPLETELY gutting the talent trees?
Fuck you, call me when you stop pandering (Pun unintended) to the lil bitches who can't do a damn thing without you doing all the work for them.

TL;dr:
Fuck activision.

And my crappy guild still hasn't even tried to do Mogu'shan Vaults on Normal......

Fat_Hippo:
I don't actually care about WoW, but just wanted to say: Ion Hazzikostas is an awesome name. He sounds like he could be one the raid bosses himself.

I know right, Greek names are pretty awesome sometimes! I can't wait to sink my teeth in the new region tomorrow, the dailies seem to be very story driven and interesting, and the raid design from what I've read seems to put a full emphasis on original complex mechanics rather than gear checks. I'm excited and a bit scared, since the first tier content of MoP kicked my guild's ass and we didn't manage to complete it in time (nowhere near).

DVS BSTrD:
With a name like Ion, HE should be the Thunder King.

It's pronounced "ee-on" :P

Fat_Hippo:
I don't actually care about WoW, but just wanted to say: Ion Hazzikostas is an awesome name. He sounds like he could be one the raid bosses himself.

With a name like Ion, HE should be the Thunder King.

And to think, my old guild was getting pissed because we weren't raiding fast enough to get gear for 5.2 then it only goes live 3 months later. Funny thing is a few months ago, this would've excited me, new content to go smash my face against with people who can't master basic mechanics, huzzah! But now it's more a "Huh...so they finally released it...I thought I'd care more."

I don't actually care about WoW, but just wanted to say: Ion Hazzikostas is an awesome name. He sounds like he could be one the raid bosses himself.

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