Through the Mist is a regular column from Luke Le Page covering everything World of Warcraft. If you’d like something covered in a future column, drop us a line!
With patch 5.04 just around the corner, I thought it would be good time to take a look at some of the changes that are taking place before the launch of Mists of Pandaria. The patch notes can be seen below and as you can see there are some major changes coming.
Perhaps the most exciting part is the pre expansion world event involving Theramore. This looks to be an exceptional event. Personally I have elected not to go on the PTR to test it so that I can fully enjoy it when it goes live.
The change that will have the greatest impact on gameplay is obviously the changes to talents and I encourage everyone who intends to play to check it out beforehand so you can get an idea on what talents you want to take.
I have also included the update, which can be found below the patch notes, that details how currency is going to be dealt with.
Apart from the major gameplay changes such as talents, there are a number of excellent Interface changes. The queuing system has undergone a much needed overhaul and all queue types can now be accessed from a single menu.
The removal of ranged and relic slots has been a fairly contentious issue throughout the beta and for hunters it means that their ranged weapon will now fill the “weapon” slot and no other weapons are usable. As a Rogue I am obviously a fan of any change that stops Hunters rolling on Agility-based weapons!
It is also important to note that with this patch, all of the races in World of Warcraft will be available to players no matter what level of access they have. The Pandaren however will remain locked until the official launch of Mists of Pandaria and then become available to all players. The Monk class will only be available to people with access to the expansion. I have yet to find any details on whether this will be the same for Death Knights (with Wrath of the Lich King access) or not.
My personal favourite in regards to the changes is account-wide achievements. I played extensively in classic and the Burning Crusade on my Paladin, it was not until very late in the Burning Crusade that I elected to change mains for guild purposes and so I do not have any classic raiding reputations at exalted. With this change all of the work I did on my Paladin can be transported across to my Rogue and I will be rewarded with a huge increase in Achievement points to display on my main. While this by no means affects gameplay in any way it is a nice gesture from Blizzard and enables people who have changed mains for whatever reasons, or simply altoholics to have all of their work displayed in one place. (An interruption from the Editor here: WOOT!!)
We also see an increase in the number of character slots. You can find the details in this interview with Tom Chilton. The character slot response is at about 1:20 mark of the video.
The patch notes:
Welcome to the World of Warcraft Patch 5.0.4 Public Test Realm. We thank you for testing Patch 5.0.4 with us, and ask that you participate in our PTR Feedback forum and our PTR Bug Report forum.
Your feedback is greatly appreciated.
Please note that PTR testing is restricted to World of Warcraft game accounts that do not have access to the Mists of Pandaria beta test. You can find more information on this here.
- Account-wide Achievements, pets, and mounts
- In Patch 5.0.4 and beyond, the majority of your character’s Achievements, pets, and mounts will be shared with your other characters. Please read: Bringing Achievements to the Account Level, by Greg “Ghostcrawler” Street
- World Event: Attack on Theramore Isle
- Warchief Garrosh, obsessed with assuring the Horde’s supremacy over Kalimdor, launches an all-out attack against Jaina’s island home of Theramore. Though valiant Alliance defenders rush to repel the sudden onslaught, they’ll soon find themselves unprepared for the terrible scope of Garrosh’s true plans…
- In the Public Test Realm, we will be testing this event at specified intervals. Keep an eye on our PTR Feedback forum for more details as they become available.
- AOE Looting
- Area of effect looting comes to World of Warcraft with this patch. After killing a group of enemies in close proximity, when you loot one of their corpses, the loot window will include items from all of the nearby corpses for which you have loot rights.
- BattleTagsupport in World of Warcraft
- Players who have enabled their BattleTagwill now be able to:
- See BattleTag friends in your friends list.
- Add and remove BattleTag friends.
- Send BattleTag invites to other players via right-click.
- All classes have been updated with a new talent system, improved abilities, and spells (accessible throughout levels 1-85). Your character’s talents have been reset.
- Many old talents have been converted to specialization abilities.
- Druids now have access to a fourth class specialization: Guardian.
- New spells are now learned automatically. Class trainers are only needed to change talents, glyphs, class specialization, or to utilize the dual specialization feature.
- All characters now take 30% less damage from other players.
- Coming soon.
- Spell Penetration has been replaced by PvP Power on existing items.
- Head enchants removed
- Enchants that modify the gear in your head slot have been removed from the game. This includes older head enchants of every type.
- Relics, ranged, and thrown items
- The slot in which ranged, relics, and thrown items were previously equipped has been removed. All weapons should now be equipped in the weapon slot.
- Ranged weapons, including wands, have been adjusted to be more powerful.
- Ranged weapons no longer have a minimum range.
- The glyph system has been updated. Many class glyphs have been added, altered, or moved to different glyph types.
- Prime glyphs have been removed.
- There is a new user interface for your mounts and pets.
- Character creation screens have been updated.
- Buffs have been consolidated in the UI.
- New roll results frame added. This new feature can be accessed by clicking the word “[Loot]” in chat, or by typing “/loot”.
- The PvE queue frames have been unified. You can now queue for dungeons, raids, and other queue-able content in one handy place.
- Vendors now offer item filtering.
- Spellbooks have been updated to reflect changes to core abilities, and now include a brief overview of specializations.
- The Dungeon Journal has been expanded with information on all pre-Cataclysm encounters.
- A new help system has been added to many frames. You can toggle this on and off by clicking the “i” button in the upper left corner of the frame.
The currency conversion coming with Mists of Pandaria is going to happen in three stages, and this is how we plan for it to progress:
With Patch 5.0.4 on August 28
- Valor points will be converted to Justice points, and Conquest points will be converted to Honor points.
- Neither of the resultant currencies (Justice and Honor) will have an enforced hard-cap at this time.
- The current Arena season will end.
- Players will no longer be able to earn Valor or Conquest points (bosses will drop Justice, Arenas will be closed).
- Items formerly purchasable for Valor/Conquest will be available for Justice/Honor.
With Mists of Pandaria on September 25
- Valor can be earned again.
- Characters can earn up to 1000 Valor per week, and carry a maximum of 3000 Valor.
- Daily quests, random Scenarios, random Heroic dungeons, and all levels of raiding will reward Valor.
- Valor will be used to purchase ilvl 489 gear in Mists of Pandaria.
- The Klaxxi, Golden Lotus, Shado-Pan, and August Celestials factions will sell this gear.
- Revered reputation with each faction will be required.
- Conquest will become earnable.
- There is a cap of 4000 Conquest points.
- Arenas and Rated Battlegrounds reward Conquest.
- It will be used to purchase ilvl 483 gear from Pandaren battlemasters on the Great Wall.
With Mists of Pandaria, Patch 5.1
- We currently plan to upgrade the Valor system as Ghostcrawler described in Mists of Pandaria Looting Explained in the 5.1 patch, allowing you to upgrade your gear using Valor points. We’ll have additional information once Mists of Pandaria launches and we get closer to the 5.1 patch release.
Do you have questions or comments about currencies in World of Warcraft? Please let us know in this discussion thread.