Fresh off the heels of yesterday's beta patch, which included a massive list of undocumented changes, we have quite a few blue posts for you of particular interest. Read on for the full details on everything, and don't forget to stay up-to-date with the latest beta news both here and on World of Raids.
Tigole on gold spammer exploit potential with the new calendar (src)
We have anti-gold spam measures in the works for the calendar. Please continue to post feedback or if you find anything that you believe will be exploitable or abusive.
The Zul'Aman Bear Mount will no longer drop after Lich King goes live (src)
The Zul'Aman bear will no longer be available. But the other mounts you mentioned will remain unchanged.
The reasoning behind this is that the Zul'Aman bear is obtained during an event which requires precision and skill at level 70. The accomplishment for those who have legitimately earned the mount would be diminished if we continued to allow players to obtain the mount once the level cap is raised to 80.
Death Knight: The new Frost Strike (src)
There is a bug right now preventing normalized attacks from doing non-physical damage. Frost Strike will be normalized when that bug is fixed. (Obliterate will also be normalized.)
But, sadly, instant attacks do less damage than next-swing attacks, since an instant attack also lets you get the full benefit from the normal melee swing. That's why Frost Strike does less damage now. The freezing part wasn't even factored into the damage calculation because we want to mess with that some more... as well as get feedback. :)
Death Knight: Tanking impressions (src)
Useful feedback. Thanks. :)
I don't know if this was true in your situation, but one thing I have noticed is that the death knights who have leveled quickly tend to be grouping with veteran characters in epic gear. It's tough to test threat generation of a death knight in Shadowmoon quest blues against dps classes in T4 or better gear.
If you're getting trounced by Ingvar, that is probably a problem with the dungeon and not the guys you're running with. The earlier instances need to be reasonably easy, especially since a lot of players will be running them in Borean Tundra greens.
We haven't made a big pass comparing threat, dps and mitigation among all the classes yet, frankly because the abilities haven't stabilized enough yet. Fortunately with the death knight in particular, there are a lot of knobs to turn.
Druid: Maim no longer stops auto-attacks (src)
Maim will break from the same amount of damage that Fear, Entangling Roots etc. breaks with now.
Hunter: Master's Call to be usable while stunned (src)
Able to use while stunned? Consider it done.
Hunter: Ghostcrawler on exotic pets versus normal pets (src)
The exotic pets will be different from normal pets. Ideally they might even be a little bit better, but we're very hesitant to make them too good lest we see every hunter stampede over to the BM tree. Pets are supposed to be something important to all kinds of hunters, and the BM tree already offers some amazing pet buffs and synergy. We just don't want to overdo it with this talent. :)
At the very least, the exotic pets will have a new family ability that will ideally be really useful in some situations. I'm making this one up, but imagine that since normal crabs have Pin, an exotic pet might have a Pin-like ability that did fire damage. Or imagine that you could tame a drake (you can't, because they aren't beasts) and that instead of lightning or fire breath, it had frost breath that could freeze an enemy, death knight style. Would this be useful? Probably. Does it make the 51-point talent mandatory? Ideally not. Though those 5 talent points aren't bad....
As far as what happens if you have an exotic pet and respec, most likely the pet's talents will just reset. Yeah you get a free pet respec out of the deal, but it's not as if it's free since the hunter has to respec. Any exotic pets in the stable won't be lost, but you wouldn't be able to get them out of the stable either. If you have an exotic pet at the moment you respec, then it will probably be dismissed (but not abandoned) and you won't be able to summon it again, forcing you to go swap it into the stable. (Or abandon it if you're THAT kind of hunter.)
Hunter: Ghostcrawler comments on Pet Talent feedback (src)
Great thread. Because the pet talents are such a new feature, all of this feedback is really useful.
A couple of things to keep in mind:
The bottom talents in particular need to have some pretty stringent pre-reqs so that hunters can't just cherry pick all of the active abilities. We can and will iterate on what those pre-req talents are though.
Active pet abilities in general represent some interesting design challenges. On the one hand, if the hunter just programs the pet and puts it on autopilot, then having unique abilities just sort of blends into a generic +dps for the pet. On the other hand, it would be sad if hunters never took the active abilities because the pet has trouble using the expensive ones and the hunter feels like he already has too many of his own abilities to hit.
This is something on which we'll try to hit a reasonable balance. Warlocks seem to have a pretty decent mix of demon abilities that can be used by the demon AI and some that the warlock specifically needs to use.
Mage: Arcane Blast receiving a revamp (src)
From our internal patch notes:
Arcane Blast effect duration reduced to 3 seconds, now increases damage by 15/30/45% instead of reducing cast time.
Shaman: Paralysis being replaced soon (src)
Being replaced with something soon, along with a few other changes to deep Elemental.
Shaman: Retroactive changes to "some" gear coming (src)
We hope to retroactively change some of the gear on live so the transition is less painful for classes whose core mechanics are changing.
Shaman: Lightning Bolt coefficient nerfed (src)
Lightning Bolt always had a higher coefficient than similar bolt spells. This was because there weren't as much/any nature damage debuffs. Now that they exist, we're restoring Lightning Bolt to it's intended coefficient. Your DPS in a raid setting will if anything be higher with these changes.
Warlock: Master Conjuror changes coming (src)
Master Conjurer will soon be a good investment ;)