BlizzCon 2011: Pandaren Race Features

Written by Medievaldragon on . Posted in BlizzCon 2011, World of Warcraft News

During the World of Warcraft: Intro to Mists of Pandaria, Wow Lead Systems Designer Greg Street — known as Ghostcrawler — led the discussion about the Pandaren Race Features.

Pandaren Classes

Ghostcrawler: We have a new race: The Pandaren. One of our early concepts here.

The hair and facial style options and the female pandaren are not available yet when you go play here at BlizzCon. Those are still in development. So far they’ll look like this in this build.

The playable Pandaren race is neutral, and at level 10 you’ll kinda choose which faction to belong to: Horde or Alliance.

These are Pandaren Classes: Hunter, Mage, Monk, Priest, Rogue, Shaman, Warrior.

We can talk a lot about the Monk, but you can see we have a lot of other classes to choose from. Some of these we saw didn’t make as much sense. There was a lot of discussion among developers about which classes fit the Pandaren. For example, does a druid bear turn into a bear? (crowd laughter)

Pandaren races are embedded into those seven stones and will never change. There won’t be a Pandaren Death Knight, Druid, Paladin nor Warlock.

Racials

These I’m sure are set in stone and will never ever change.

  • Epicurean: You get increase stat benefits from food by 100%.

They also like to cook. In fact we are thinking about a whole lot of interesting things with cooking because that’s such a key element to the Pandaren culture.

    <
  • strong>Gourmand: Cooking skill increased by 15.

Inner Peace feels like a so much of a powerful racial, and probably isn’t, but that’s one we’d want in a racial. (Crowd breaks into laughter).

  • Inner Peace: Your rested experience bonus lasts twice as long.

(Crowd breaks into laughter again seeing the Bouncy Racial)

  • Bouncy: You take 50% less falling damage.

And finally, we had to do an active racial, and this is it. Little bit of a crowd control.

  • Quaking Palm: You touch a secret pressure point on an enemy target, putting it to sleep for 3 sec.

Pandaren Weapons

Here are some of the awesome weapons that the artists have put together for the Pandaren starting zone. You’ll see a lot of stuff like this.

We really want it to feel like you aren’t in Azeroth. You’re in this new place, an entirely different culture.

New Class: Monk

We have a Monk. We’re going to start with some concept art. They have really excellent animations, and we’ll show you some of those in a second here.

If you ever wanted to play a Drunkenmaster, this is your chance.

There are three Monk specs:

  • Brewmaster – Tank
  • Mistweaver – Healer
  • Windwalker – Melee DPS

What we want to do with the Pandaren Monk healer is to try to have a healer that can stand up in melee.

We don’t expect Monk healers to be doing tons and tons of damage, but we wanted to experiment with a different type of healing style. Maybe players that are burned-out on healing to try something different here. Some can probably guess what the last one is? Punch someone in the face (he refers to Windwalker: melee DPS).

We do have this epic start zone so we want our players to experience this. With the Death Knight we thought the story made sense if you were brought back by the Lich King, here you’re starting out on the turtle and will eventually make it to Pandaria, so you start at the first level.

Very martial arts-based, but we’re really trying to embrace this, even like I said, the healer and the tank will do a lot of Kung-Fu things, and our animation team really delivered on this on a crazy level, there are a lot of new unique animations for the Monk.

The tank, healer and melee DPS monk all have different stances. They stand in so even their basic idle animations look different too.

You’ll see all their weapon animation is unique, and this for the non-Pandaren races too. Ohh! You thought that it was only Monks and Pandaria only?

Races that can choose a Monk Class

  • Draenei
  • Dwarf
  • Gnome
  • Human
  • Night Elf
  • Pandaren
  • Blood Elf
  • Orc
  • Tauren
  • Troll
  • Undead

The Worgen and the Goblin are excluded from choosing a Monk class.

Pandaria has been rediscovered almost like a stay-at-home types. There are adventurous ones and they are spreading around the Eastern Kingdoms, and Kalimdor — and starting to train some of the other races in the secret art of Monkery or whatever you call it. I think Tom Chilton said, if we don’t do no Monks, Monks aren’t worth doing. I also can’t wait to see a Tauren doing the Monk roll ability.

Monk Equipment

Monks hit a lot with hands and feet. We wanted to deliver on that fantasy of punching and kicking the krap out of those little bunny guys (the Verming), but we still want them to have weapons.

We want to see your weapons as you use them — so you can imagine a typical fight — you build up Shi with your hand and feet, and then you pull out your staff or your other weapon for some kind of finisher (finishing move).

We’ve made a lot of Staves and Fist Weapons. These are the very signature for the monk, and we think it will allow us to put more fist weapons in the game.

They don’t have enough users yet, so expect to see a lot more. They use One-Handed Axes, Maces and Swords. We are trying to figure out the difference between the dual-wielding and the two-handed. We might let anyone do anything. Dual-wield might be DPS. That’s the thing we’re looking at.

That’s the sort of thing we will need to iterate some. I’m sure you guys will let us know the right way to do it, and healers use off-hands. We don’t want Monks using shields.

Monk Armor Type

They are a leather armor class, sorta like the druids, agility for monk tank and dps, and intellect for the monk healer.

Monk Resources

One of the fun things about making a new class is the new resource system. We want to make them kinda different and capitalize with what we already know works, and try to mix it up a little bit.

The monks have an energy-like resource and it slowly regenerates and you use this primarily for two attacks: your jab which is primarily an energy builder, and then the roll attack which you saw in the opening trailer where the monk is running along. A lot of fun if you go check it out in all the computers around the corner there.

Jab generates light and dark force which you then use for anything else. You have some finisher moves which use light force, and some finisher moves that use the dark force.

We have talk about that. It’s controversial, but it’s been a lot of fun. We wanted to deliver on this Street Fighter-feel that you are punching a lot, and we thought the auto-attack would get in the way of that. When you punch a button you see an animation.

We wanted it to be visceral. We thought it feels pretty good, but try it out and let us know.

This is the current Monk Resource Bar. Again, if you were with us with the Death Knight, we had to iterate with it a lot, but you can see for the monk we have four Light force balls and four Dark force balls on the other side.

You fill those and consume them to do finishers. At the moment, in the play test area around there, this bar is down in the middle of your screen, something we haven’t done before. Something players have asked us a lot, so we’ll try it. Again, let us know how it works.

This is what a Monk animation should actually look like when you are in combat.

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