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The Problem of Over Correcting

Anduin is in a powerful place. Before the Big One, the priest’s options for fighting were weak and clumsy. Velen had few uses, Fade was mostly useless, Greater Heal was entirely useless. But some redesign and new cards swooped in to bolster Azeroth’s priestly princeling into a powerful Hero.

hearthstone-anduin

But there might be a bit of a problem with him now. The priest has, perhaps, the best removals in the game. Holy Nova doesn’t hit as hard as Flamestike but it does heal your minions. Shadow Words Pain and Death are leagues better than Corruption or Naturalize. There are a host of powerful 4 attack minions, Ysera and the Auctioneer for example, but those can still be countered by silences or even a +1 buff from your end. That leaves the priest with Mind Control. Yes, the controlled minion has summoning sickness. Yes, it costs 8 mana, putting it behind Flamestrike by 1 turn and it’s twice the cost of Polymorph. Despite the high cost and delay in its effect, Mind Control is devastating. It’s at minimum a 2 card counter: you steal a card from a player, and force them to deal with the threat.

The Masters of Hearthstone’s mechanics aren’t unaware of Mind Control’s potency and the priest’s recent empowerment. In a post by Takralus, the community rep said:

We are talking about the issue here and looking at the power of Mind Control at different skill levels and in different modes so we can make any adjustments that may be needed. We’re still deliberating the right course of action, but we have heard you guys and we understand your concerns.

 

I’ve got some ideas for how to bring Mind Control under control.

  • Make the cost 10. A longer delay that allows you to rush the priest a little faster.  This is the least elegant option, I think.
  • Limit the targets. Maybe only 6 attack, or undamaged units.
  • The Mind Controlled target is weakened – a penalty to attack and health or is automatically silenced, since Anduin seems to enjoy that mechanic anyway.
  • The Mind Control effect can be silenced and the creature returns to its original owner.

Obviously, Mind Control is being examined by Blizzard’s team and they’re testing and watching it closely. Keep submitting suggestions to them and posting comments on the Hearthstone forums. The priest may have been over corrected but that’s how design works: a tweak this way, a twist that way, and eventually things are balanced out.

Blizzard Customer Service Twitter Diablo III Beta Key Giveaway

The Blizzard Customer Service Twitter announced a Diablo III Beta Key giveaway. That’s 500 keys folks. Chances to win are pretty high. Check out the official rules.

@BlizzardCS is giving away 500 keys for the exclusive Diablo III beta test over the next five weeks. If you want to lead the charge against the minions of the Burning Hells before the game’s official release – follow the instructions below and enter the drawing for your chance to win.

Starting December 20, 2011, we’ll be randomly selecting 100 winners each week to receive a key to our exclusive Diablo III beta test. Drawings will occur at the end of every Tuesday for five (5) weeks for the total 500 keys.

What you need to know:

    How to Enter:
        1. Have an active Battle.net® account
        2. Be a registered user of Twitter®
        4. Use the hashtag #DiabloBeta and @BlizzardCS in a Tweet,
        5. Send an email of the tweet to cstwitterfeedback@blizzard.com. With a link to your tweet.

    If you have not registered a Battle.net account, visit http://www.battle.net to register for a Battle.net account at no cost to you; and if you are not a registered user of Twitter®, simply visit http://twitter.com/signup to register at no cost to you.

      Sweepstakes Starts
        December 20, 2011 @ 1:00 pm (PST)

      Sweepstakes Ends

        January 23, 2012 @ 11:59 pm (PST)

      Partial transcript of rules:

      1. Eligibility. BLIZZARD ENTERTAINMENT, INC., A DELAWARE CORPORATION (referred to herein as “SPONSOR”) IS THE SPONSOR OF THIS CONTEST. THIS CONTEST IS OPEN ONLY TO RESIDENTS OF THE UNITED STATES, CANADA, MEXICO, CHILE, COSTA RICA, ARGENTINA, PANAMA, VENEZUELA, PERU FRANCE, BELGIUM, UNITED KINGDOM, LUXEMBOURG, GERMANY, AUSTRIA, SWEDEN, FINLAND, DENMARK, NORWAY, SPAIN, ITALY, TAIWAN AND SOUTH KOREA WHICH ARE OF THE AGE OF MAJORITY IN THEIR COUNTRY OF RESIDENCE. If you are under the legal age of majority in your country of residence, but are (i) over the age of 13 years of age and a resident of the United States of America, or a member country of the European Union other than Spain, or the United Kingdom; (ii) who is least 14 years of age and a resident of Spain or the United Kingdom; or (iii) who is at least 15 years of age and is a resident of the Republic of Korea; and one of your parents or legal guardians must submit a signed, written statement that they have read, understood and agree to these Contest rules to be eligible to win a prize, and that such agreement constitutes acceptance of these Contest rules on behalf of you and themselves. If you reside in the Province of Quebec in Canada, you are not eligible to participate in this Contest. To be eligible to win a prize, entries must be completed and received by Sponsor in the format designated below. Directors, officers and employees of Sponsor, its parent, and any of their respective affiliate companies, subsidiaries, agents, professional advisors, advertising and promotional agencies, and immediate families of each are not eligible to win any prizes. All applicable federal, state and local laws and regulations apply. There is no cost to enter or win. Entries limited to one entry per Battle.net Account per week during the Sweepstakes. Offer void where prohibited. In the event of any dispute, entries will be deemed to have been submitted by the owner of the e-mail address associated with the entry.

      2. Contest Period. The Contest shall commence at 12:01 AM Pacific Daylight Savings Time on December 20, 2011 (the “Start Date”), and shall continue in duration until 11:59 PM Pacific Daylight Savings Time, January 23, 2012 (the “Deadline”). All entries must be received by the Deadline and in accordance with these official rules to be eligible to win a prize.

2011 Christmas Promo: Blizzard T-shirts, Hoodies, Peripherals & Drinkware up to 20% off

2011-holiday-diablo-3-t-shirts

Don’t have a clue what to gift your best friends, or family members for Christmas? Are they Blizzard gamers? J!NX announced a new Christmas promotion that covers all Blizzard T-shirts, Hoodies, Hats, the new SteelSeries peripherals and Drinkware from Taverncraft.

This is definitely cool and I don’t think you will get that kind of a discount on peripherals elsewhere. Take a look. There are two promo offers. Choose only one. Can’t be combined with other offers:

Promo # 1

Save 5% off your order of $30 or more
Save 10% off your order of $50 or more
Save 15% off your order of $75 or more
Save 20% off your order of $100 or more

Don’t forget to type this Promotion Code during checkout to activate the discount: SAVINGTHROW

This offer expires Saturday, December 24, 2011 at 11:59PM PDT, so don’t wait!
*can’t be combined with any other offers, sale prices, or discounts

Promo # 2

Buy any 3 T-Shirts, Hoodies, or Hats and get FREE Shipping!

At checkout type the promo code: FREESHIP2011

*Good for US and international shipping. Can’t be combined with any other offers, sales or discounts.

Blizzard Licensed T-shirts, Hoodies, Hats

Check out each link to browse through all the newest T-shirts, hoodies, and hats based on StarCraft II, World of Warcraft: Cataclysm and Diablo III.

Peripherals & Drinkware




Undercity Mug




Orgrimmar Mug



Stormwind Mug




Ironforge Mug




SteelSeries QcK Goblin Edition




SteelSeries QcK Worgen Edition



SteelSeries QcK Deathwing Edition


SteelSeries World of Warcraft Cataclysm MMO Gaming Mouse



SteelSeries Siberia v2 Full-size USB Headset


SteelSeries 7H headset for iPod iPhone and iPad



SteelSeries Siberia V2 for iPod, iPhone and iPad




SteelSeries Siberia Neckband for iPod iPhone and iPad


SteelSeries Siberia v2 Full-size Headset (Red)


Murloc Stein

WoW PTR 3.1.3 Patch Notes Preview

Blizzard has revealed some of the changes pending on the upcoming PTR 3.1.3—a patch preceding the content patch 3.2.  In this new minor patch, we can see a lot of class changes either buffing or nerfing certain spells and abilities.  Another nerf on the Mimiron encounter will probably be welcomed by some casual guilds, or irritate the hardcore guilds. To each their own poison. A few items will get their stats tweaked some. You can read the patch notes after the break.

Death Knights

  • Frost Presence: Armor bonus is now 60% down from 80%.

Druids

  • Improved Barkskin: This talent now also grants 80/160% additional armor while in Travel Form or not shapeshifted.
  • Improved Tree of Life: The armor bonus to Tree of Life Form from this talent has been reduced to 67/133/200% bonus armor.

Hunters

  • Hunter’s Mark: The ranged attack power bonus from this ability has been increased from 300 to 500.
  • Master Marksman: This talent now also decreases the cost of Aimed Shot and Chimera Shot by 5/10/15/20/25%.

Paladins

  • Eye For An Eye: This talent now deals 5/10% of the critical strike damage taken by the paladin back at the attacker.
  • Hand of Freedom: The base duration of this buff has been reduced from 10 seconds to 6 seconds.

Rogues

  • Overkill: Talent redesigned. Now increases energy regeneration by 30% while stealthed, and for 20 seconds after breaking stealth.

Warlocks

  • Chaos Bolt: This spell no longer ignores damage reduction effects of the target.

Warriors

  • Blood Frenzy: This talent now provides 5/10% haste instead of 3/6%.
  • Bloodthirst: Cooldown reduced from 5 seconds to 4 seconds, and rage cost reduced from 30 rage to 20 rage.
  • Juggernaut: This talent now also increases the cooldown on Charge by 510 seconds.

Items

  • Death Knight PvP Gauntlets: The chance to refresh a Frost Rune when casting Chains of Ice has been removed. When equipped, these gloves now generate

    5 additional runic power whenever Chains of Ice is used.

Dungeons

  • Ulduar
    • Mimiron
      • The flight time of Rocket Strikes has been increased, and Rocket Strikes will try to prefer players at range.
      • The Leviathan Mk II component of the V-07-TR-0N will become stunned during Phase 4 when the VX-001 component begins to cast the P3Wx2 Laser Barrage

        ability.

      • Proximity mines now deal less damage and have a lower duration. A small arming time has also been added so proximity mines will not immediately

        detonate on creation.

Bug Fixes

  • Druid Tier 8 Balance Set: The 4-piece bonus no longer has its effect consumed by Starfire casts in progress when it triggers. The chance for the

    effect to be triggered has been reduced down to 8%, as it was originally inflated to compensate.

  • Ice Layered Barrier: Upgraded to item level 232. In addition, the stats in the tooltip have been correctly adjusted to 78 spell power, 48 haste rating, 16 mana per 5 seconds, 52 Intellect, and 50 Stamina.
  • Pulsing Spellshield: The stats listed in the tooltip for this item were incorrect and have been adjusted. This item provides 69 spell power, 34 haste rating, 42 critical strike rating, 45 intellect, and 45 stamina.

Patch 3.1.2: Class Q&A Series

The developers want your feedback about each class and questions for the developers.  Read first the patch notes to identify the changes introduced in patch 3.1.2. Play around your class once the live servers come back online, specially tonight when you go to Ulduar. Any bugs or suggestions should be posted at the following forum threads.  Try not to create new threads about this topic. The developers will be reading all your feedback in these class specific threads.

More threads will be appearing in upcoming days and weeks. For now these are the class threads available:

USA

Europe

 

Blizzard Quote:
We are looking for community class questions and topics for a class Question & Answer series. Over the next few weeks, we will be posting in each of the class forums and discussing the latest high priority questions and topics the community has. We will then be compiling these questions and topics into a larger Question & Answer post to address as many of questions as possible. While we will be creating one post in each of the class forums to solicit questions and topics of interest, we will also be keeping a close eye on additional posts and discussions.

It is important to keep in mind that we have a schedule of classes we will be addressing and will be getting to each class individually over this period of time. Please note, this list is subject to change.

Shaman
Mage
Warlock
Death Knight
Paladin
Warrior
Hunter
Druid
Rogue
Priest

Best Costume to win a free trip to Blizzcon 2009

Blizzard is preparing to announce a new contest that starts on May 20.  The winners of this contest will get free trip for two to BlizzCon 2009 and some phat lootz.  The catch?  You better be good at sewing costumes … or a blacksmith or leatherworker in real life.

Blizzard Quote:
Warm up your sewing machines and start selecting the best fabrics you can; the Blizzard Costume Contest is coming soon! The best costume-maker will receive a grand prize package filled with great loot from our partners Panini, SteelSeries, and Upper Deck as well as an a trip for two to BlizzCon 2009! Check out our contest information page for details.

http://www.wow-europe.com/en/contests/costume09/

This contest will launch on May 20 so get your costumes ready!

What World of Warcraft Music is Missing on CD?

Blizzard started a new poll asking for fan feedback. It is not openly implied, but it might be possible they are preparing a stand-alone soundtrack CD for sale or iTunes goodies. I recommend all our visitors to participate in the poll, regardless.  The World of Warcraft music is very rich and enjoyable.  Those who have the Collector’s Edtions know what I am talking about. Sometimes I listen to the soundtracks on a daily basis while working on the website, or doing other stuff other than gaming.

The Music of Blizzard Entertainment by EMINENCE is also a good product to listen to. Who knows, maybe this poll is about some interesting project.  It would be good to share your feelings on which music in-game you love the most that didn’t make it into the Collector’s Edition or the EMINENCE CDs. The poll has the following options:

  • Black Temple

  • Ulduar
  • Zul’Aman
  • Kharazhan
  • Sunwell
  • Other (Write In)
Blizzard Quote:
The World of Warcraft is full of music, but not all of it makes it onto the CDs. What music do you think is missing and what ones would you like to have most? If your favorite isn’t on the list, feel free to write it in!

Secrets of Ulduar Compensation Day

Blizzard is giving all World of Warcraft subscribers a One-Day Exempt Compensation due to the exceeded maintenance schedule and afterward-downtime caused by instability. This compensation will be reflected in your WoW Account page in the official website.

Blizzard Quote:
World of Warcraft saw many new features and additions added to the game with the launch of our latest content patch, Secrets of Ulduar. While we anticipated extended downtime for this patch, the actual downtime exceeded our expectations and after the realms came online players have experienced long petition wait times. At this time, many of the issues that caused these problems have been addressed and resolved.

In light of these circumstances, all European and Russian accounts that are active and in good standing will receive one free day of play time. This day of compensation should be applied and viewable in your account management page (http://www.wow-europe.com/account) within the next 7 days. We thank you for your continued support of World of Warcraft and we

Patch 3.1.1 - Non-Fixed Ulduar Known Issues

Blizzard is sharing with fans a list of known Ulduar [specific

] bugs they are aware of, but no hotfixes or solutions have been found at this moment to address them, which means these are on queue for a upcoming patch.

Blizzard Quote:
Here’s the current issues with Ulduar we’re currently investigating or are known and have no current fix.

Siege Engines that use Steam Rush while on a ramp sometimes fall through the world.
We currently have no fix for this, the workaround is simply to not cast Steam Rush on the ramps. The ability works fine in the Flame Leviathan fight and other flat ground.

Ignis sometimes will slag pot the offtank dealing with constructs.
The protections in place work most of the time, but we’re still investigating reports on this. Note that the protection is only granted if the tank is actively being melee’d by the construct. If players immobilize the construct and the tank backs away, the tank will not have the slag pot protection.

Kologarn can Stone Grip someone at the exact same time his right arm dies, leaving the player gripped for an extended time.
This is really rare, we located the issue, but a fix will have to wait for a future patch.

Kologarn can sometimes not respawn after a wipe.
UPDATE: We’re investigating this, but the current workaround is to soft reset the zone.

Mimiron will sometimes spray the room with his P3W X2 ability in phase 4.
UPDATE: We’re checking into this currently, and we’re combing through reports to try and nail down the specifics can trigger this.

Mimiron’s Aerial Command Unit can sometimes switch targets from the normal ranged tank to a different target in phase 4.
UPDATE: This behavior can be caused by the ranged tank moving outside the range of the Plasma Ball ability, which is 30 yards. We’ll update this in a future patch to create a phase 4 version of the spell with a longer range. The current spell has the shorter range to allow the ranged tank to move the Command Unit more easily in Phase 3.

Mimiron’s Assault Bots corpses don’t despawn after phase 3 ends, and they can hide mines with their bodies.
UPDATE: We’re going to have them vaporize after phase 3 in a future patch.

Some of the XT-002 Deconstructor adds can evade.
UPDATE: We’re investigating these reports.

The above isn’t the total list of all issues we’re checking out and fixing, some are visual only or are very rare.

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