WoW PTR 4.1 – New Zul’Gurub and Zul’Aman 5-man lvl 85 Dungeons

Written by Medievaldragon on . Posted in World of Warcraft News

Blizzard Entertainment released the patch notes for the PTR 4.1 which re-introduces Zul’Gurub and Zul’Aman, both as level 85 dungeons for 5-players instead of 20 (Zul’Gurub) and the former 10 (Zul’Aman).

Right now, players get items lvl 346 from heroic dungeons, and the only way to get lvl 359 quality items is doing the daily heroic dungeon through the LFG tool — unless you are in a hardcore guild able to beat the first raid boss, or beyond (or kill trash mobs). It’s a really tedious and long process to get just one item off the valor points quartermaster (usually 10 days worth or more).

By now, most players have done so many heroic dungeon runs they might have most of their 346 gear, or nigh there. Some feel it’s a bit rough to do Cataclysm raids (i.e. Four Winds, Blackwing Descent, or Bastion of Twilight).

Zul’Aman and Zul’Gurub will be the equivalent, in a sense, to the role the Grand Crusader Argent Tournament dungeon played in the Wrath of the Lich King expansion. They will help narrow the gap between heroic dungeons and raid dungeons with better quality items lvl 353 items, on top of the valor point quartermaster items (lvl 359). These new items will help players boost that extra dps, strength, mana or armor required to get through those cataclysm raid bosses at a better pace, helping those unable yet to defeat the first bosses transition and succeed — especially those guilds who aren’t exactly hardcore, or those who prefer PUGs.

Some elitists might think this breaks their game, but the fact is this is a continuously evolving game. At some point, the Deathwing dungeon will open up. Players better have cataclysm raid quality gear by then.

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That’s right, folks. Development on the first major content patch for World of Warcraft: Cataclysm is well underway! We’re currently making preparations to bring some of the initial content and updates we’ve been working on for this patch to the Public Test Realms. So you ask, “what will we find in the first 4.1 test client?” (You did ask that, right?) Well, let me tell you!

The Gurubashi Tribe Persists

Originally a 20-player dungeon released in patch 1.7, Zul’Gurub will once again open its gates, featuring updated lore, all-new encounters, achievements, and improved loot! Zul’Gurub is now a level-85 five-player Heroic difficulty dungeon. To provide a new tier above the current Cataclysm dungeons, players can expect to find epic-quality item level 353 loot. The minimum average item level to enter this Heroic dungeon is 346.

The Return of Zul’Aman

Ever a player favorite, the level-70 ten-player dungeon of Zul’Aman is being reintroduced as a level-85 Heroic five-player dungeon. Zul’Aman will join Zul’Gurub in a new Dungeon Finder tier of Heroic dungeons, providing epic-quality item level 353 loot. The minimum average item level to enter this Heroic dungeon is also 346. While Zul’Aman will be more of a throwback to the original dungeon featuring many of the same encounters, players can expect to find some updated gameplay mechanics, as well as new environment textures and lighting.

With the Zuls returning, you may be wondering about the unique mounts that were once contained therein. We’re pleased to announce that new versions of the rare raptor, tiger, and bear mounts will be available, while the old versions of these mounts will remain unique to those who already have them. We’ll reveal more about how these updated mounts can be obtained in the future.

Class Design

While we do intend to make fewer balance changes in patch 4.1, you can still expect to find a fair number of updates. Below are just a few we’d like to share with you right now. Keep in mind these changes don’t encompass the entirety of the 4.1 changes, nor do the initial Public Test Realm patch notes.

To start, we want to do a better job of balancing the AoE power of the different damage-dealing specs. You can expect to see some changes to this end made throughout the testing process.

Inner Rage is now available at level 56. It was intended to solve an excess rage problem that largely isn’t affecting warriors anymore. We’ve added a replacement ability for warriors at level 83: Rallying Cry.

Colossus Smash now ignores 70% of an opponent’s armor, down from 100%. We are compensating Fury and Arms warriors by increasing the damage of other attacks.

Word of Glory: We want Retribution and Protection paladins to have reasonable healing on themselves or others, but we know paladins sometimes feel like they can’t use their Holy Power on anything but their heals in some situations. We’d rather these two specs spend most of their Holy Power on damage-dealing abilities, with occasional healing.

More To Come

We’re still hard at work on additional features, balance updates, and bug fixes for patch 4.1. We look forward to sharing more information with you in the days and weeks ahead as we release new content on the Public Test Realms. Until then, have a look at the patch notes we’ve prepared thus far. As always, these notes are not final and will continue to change as we go through the iterative development and testing processes.

World of Warcraft PTR Patch 4.1

The latest retail patch notes can be found here.

Table of Contents

  • Classes
  • Dungeons & Raids
  • Guilds
  • Items
  • Professions
  • PvP
  • Races
  • User Interface

Important: These patch notes are not final. Additional updates will be made, and all existing changes are subject to revision during the course of the testing process. More information regarding patch 4.1 can be found here. Visit our Public Test Realm forum for more information about the testing process.

Classes: General

  • All non-damaging interrupts off the global cooldown will now always hit the target. This includes Pummel, Shield Bash, Kick, Mind Freeze, Rebuke, Skull Bash, Counterspell, Wind Shear, Solar Beam, Silencing Shot, and related player pet abilities.

Death Knights

  • Dark Simulacrum now works on numerous additional spells in dungeon encounters.
  • Talent Specializations
    • Blood
      • Death Strike self-healing no longer generates threat.
    • Frost
      • Blood of the North (passive) now permanently converts both Blood Runes into Death Runes. There is no longer any proc interaction with Blood Strike required to activate Death Runes.

Druids

  • Efflorescence has a new spell effect.
  • Talent Specializations
    • Balance
      • Solar Beam is now more responsive when enemies move into or out of it.

Hunters

  • Explosive Trap now has a new spell effect.
  • Master’s Call now has a new spell effect.
  • Tame Beast now tames pets to match the hunter’s level, rather than 5 levels below.

Mages

  • Talent Specializations
    • Fire
      • Ignite is no longer triggered from periodic critical effects.

Paladins

  • Word of Glory now has a 20-second cooldown.
  • Talent Specializations
    • Holy
      • Walk in the Light (passive) removes the cooldown of Word of Glory.
    • Protection
      • Divine Guardian cooldown is now 3 minutes, up from 2.
    • Retribution
      • Divine Storm now generates 1 point of Holy Power if it hits (i.e. successfully lands on) 4 or more targets.
      • Sacred Shield’s internal cooldown has been increased to 60 seconds, up from 30.

Priests

  • Divine Aegis duration has been increased to 15 seconds, up from 12.
  • Dispel Magic can only be used on the casting priest as a baseline effect.
  • Holy Word: Sanctuary has a new spell effect.
  • Power Word: Shield duration has been reduced to 15 seconds, down from 30.
  • Talent Specializations
    • Discipline
      • Absolution (new passive) enables priests to use Dispel Magic on up to 2 harmful effects on friendly targets.
    • Holy
      • Absolution (new passive) enables priests to use Dispel Magic on up to 2 harmful effects on friendly targets.

Rogues

  • Recuperate base effect now heals 3% per tick, up from 2%.
  • Stealth base cooldown has been reduced to 4 seconds, down from 10, and the movement penalty from being in Stealth has been removed.
  • Tricks of the Trade now has a 100-yard range, up from 20.
  • Talent Specializations
    • Combat
      • Improved Recuperate now adds 0.5%/1% to the health restoration effect of Recuperate, down from 1%/2%.
    • Subtlety
      • Nightstalker now reduces the cooldown of Stealth by 2/4 seconds, and instead of negating the movement penalty from Stealth, it adds a 5/10% movement speed bonus (stacking with other effects) while Stealthed.

Shaman

  • Fire Nova has been redesigned and decoupled from shaman Fire totems. Instead, it now pulses that same area-of-effect from each target that is afflicted by the shaman’s own Flame Shock debuff. It now damages all enemies except the target hit by Flame Shock. The ability’s cooldown has been reduced from 4 seconds, down from 10.
  • Magma Totem now lasts for 60 seconds, up from 21.
  • Stoneclaw Totem’s area-of-effect threat pulse no longer affects critters.
  • Talent Specializations
    • Elemental Combat
      • Earthquake is no longer a channeled spell. It now has a 2-second cast time, lasts for 10 seconds, and has a 10-second cooldown. Its damage has been reduced by 40% from its channeled version.
    • Enhancement
      • Improved Fire Nova has been redesigned and replaced by a talent called Seasoned Winds. When an enemy spell cast is successfully prevented with Wind Shear or Grounding Totem, the shaman gains magical resistance (in an amount equal to what a protection totem/aura would grant, stacking with such buffs) to the spell school(s) of the interrupted spell (except for Holy spells), lasting 10 seconds.

Warriors

  • Charge and Intercept no longer have diminishing returns on their stun effects.
  • Colossus Smash now ignores 70% of an opponent’s armor, down from 100%.
  • Inner Rage is now available at level 56.
  • Intercept now has a 1.5-second stun, down from 3 seconds.
  • Overpower damage has been increased to 140% weapon damage, up from 125%.
  • Rallying Cry (new ability) is available from trainers at level 83. It temporarily grants the warrior and all party or raid members within 30 yards 20% of maximum health for 10 seconds. After the effect expires, the health is lost. It has no cost, no stance requirements, and is not on the global cooldown. It has a 3-minute cooldown, but also shares a cooldown with Last Stand.
  • Whirlwind now has its cooldown reduced by 6 seconds when it deals damage to 4 or more targets. The Whirlwind effect caused by Bladestorm remains unchanged.
  • Talent Specializations
    • Arms
      • Improved Hamstring now reduces the global cooldown on Hamstring by 0.5/1 seconds in addition to its current effects.
      • Improved Slam increases Slam damage by 20/40%, up from 10/20%.
      • Juggernaut no longer adds 2 seconds to the Charge stun, but instead lowers the cooldown of Charge by 3 seconds (to 12 seconds total).
      • Mortal Strike damage has been increased to 175% weapon damage, up from 150%.
    • Fury
      • Raging Blow damage has been increased back up to 120% weapon damage (up from 100%).

Dungeons & Raids

  • New dungeons available for partial testing.
    • Zul’Aman has returned as a level-85 5-player Heroic dungeon featuring a revamp of the original dungeon and improved loot!
    • Zul’Gurub has returned as a level-85 5-player Heroic dungeon featuring all-new encounters, achievements, and improved loot!
    • Both dungeons will be in a new Dungeon Finder difficulty tier above the current level-85 Heroic dungeons and offer epic-quality item level 353 loot.
    • These dungeons may only partially be available for testing at this time. Stay tuned for additional updates.
  • Blackwing Descent
    • Flash Bomb (Golem Sentry ability) now has a more clear warning visual.
    • Magmaw now triggers a raid emote when summoning Lava Parasites.
    • Further improvements have been made in the Maloriak encounter to avoid Flash Freeze targeting the tanks.

Guilds

  • The Guild Perk, Cash Flow, no longer prints out text to the Chat Log. Instead, the daily amount deposited is shown in the Guild Vault Money Log. In addition, players can view the weekly contribution in a new window at the bottom of the Money Log.
  • We have added two new custom guild tabards as Guild Rewards. The tabards are account bound and offer a bonus to gaining guild reputation.

Items

  • The PvP Horde and Alliance trinkets have a new spell effect.

Professions

  • All major cities will now have every type of profession trainer and their associated trade supply vendors.

PvP

  • Battlegrounds
    • Twin Peaks
      • Graveyard Changes
        • Players will now only spawn at their base graveyard when they die in the enemy base.
        • Defending players will respawn at the middle graveyard.
        • Midfield players will respawn at the middle graveyard.
        • Attacking players will respawn at their base graveyard.

Races

  • The gnomish racial ability, Escape Artist, is no longer affected by the global cooldowns triggered by other abilities.
  • The human racial ability, Every Man for Himself, has a new spell effect.

User Interface

  • Work has begun on a new Looking for Guild system. Further details will be provided when we are ready for feedback.
  • Spells bound to a key now start to be cast when the button is pressed down by default, instead of waiting for the key to go up. This is an option that can be turned off in the Interface menu under Combat. Mouse clicking has not changed and operates on mouse click up.
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