Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

blizzard Mists of Pandaria Raid Preview By Blizzard

3 posts in this topic

Blizzard recently published the 45th issue of Blizzard Insider. Scott Mercer and Ion Hazzikostas are the guests of this issue and share many details about the first tier of raid content. Below, we summarised the interview for you.

  • Mogu'shan Vaults will be the only raid available at first and it will most likely open one week after the release of Mists of Pandaria. There, you will have 6 boss encounters and you will learn more about the Mogu race and the empire they had created. The loot in this raid will have the following item levels: 476 for Raid Finder, 489 for normal mode, and 502 for Heroic. In addition, a Celestial Steed look-alike mount (but in the form of a serpentine dragon) will drop from Elegon, the fifth boss.
  • Along with Mogu'shan Vaults, two outdoor world bosses will be available at the launch of Mists of Pandaria.
  • A few weeks into Mists of Pandaria, two new raid instances will be released: Heart of Fear and Terrace of Endless Spring. They will have 10 bosses in total and will play out as a two-part story, players starting by Heart of Fire before being able to continue to Terrace of Endless Spring.
Posted Image

With the launch fast approaching, Blizzard Insider sat down with Lead Encounter Designers Scott Mercer and Ion Hazzikostas to get an inside look at the expansion’s newest raid instance -- Mogu’shan Vaults — and the ancient secrets and epic encounters that await players inside.

Before we dive into the details, can you give us a quick overview of the lore behind the Mogu’shan Vaults? How does the raid fit into larger story of Mists of Pandaria?

Scott Mercer: The mogu are an ancient race of evil, ogre-like sorcerers who once dominated Pandaria. At some point in the distant past, all of the warring mogu factions were united by a single tyrannical warlord known as the Thunder King. The Thunder King rose to power the “the mogu way,” namely by eliminating his rivals one by one. According to legend he was able to accomplish this with the help of a mysterious artifact that he found in the depths of a mountain. After his rise to power, he built the Mogu’shan Vaults to contain and protect this secret, and converted the surrounding structure into a sort of shrine dedicated to the mogu empire. The complex houses many of the empire’s lost artifacts and is the resting place of the spirits of old mogu kings.

Ion Hazzikostas: At the time Mists of Pandaria begins, the Thunder King is long gone and the mogu empire has crumbled into isolated factions. As great and powerful secrets are wont to do, the Vaults have attracted a number of interested parties, including Zandalari trolls who are trying to enter the Vaults to get at the ancient source of mogu power, which is the key to their tribe’s survival. When the players arrive, they join forces with a pandaren Loremaster who knows of a way into the Vaults. The Loremasters are a new faction dedicated to learning and retelling the oral history of Pandaria, so the Vaults are naturally a place of tremendous interest to them.

Posted Image

What’s in store inside the Vaults from the gameplay side?

Scott Mercer: We’re building an epic new raid that includes 10- and 25-player versions with both normal and Heroic modes, as well as another 25-player version available exclusively via the Raid Finder. The Vaults contain six encounters with a wide variety of mechanics.

What kinds of encounters are planned for the Mogu’shan Vaults?

Ion Hazzikostas: The players’ characters are the first living beings to set foot inside the Mogu’shan Vaults in a few millennia,and the experience plays out as a classic “tomb raid” adventure, with mystical defenders and guardians emerging to protect the place’s secrets. In fact, the first boss encounter involves a pack of giant quilin — magical, lion-like stone constructs — that have stood motionless since the Vaults were sealed but awaken as fierce defenders once the players intrude upon their lair. The four quilin statues have different abilities based on the type of stone from which they were carved, and players will have to experiment to uncover their weaknesses. As players venture deeper into the Vaults, they’ll encounter other protectors, including a celestial dragon and the spirits of the mogu kings from ages past.

Scott Mercer: It’s important to note, too, that the Thunder King doesn’t make a direct appearance in the Vaults, though his presence is certainly felt. His original source of power lies hidden deep within the Vaults, and the mogu have learned to use that power to create most of the guardians that the players fight in the Vaults. Observant players may even notice a certain “titanic” influence in lair’s defenses.

Posted Image

What details can you share about the final boss encounter?

Ion Hazzikostas: The core chamber of the Vaults contains an army of terracotta warriors that are built into recesses within the walls. If players look up, they’ll see these statue-filled niches stretching above them into the distance. When the players enter, the statues begin animating and attacking in huge waves, and the fight quickly turns into a free-for-all. There will be certain heavy-hitting statues that require tanking, and many of the other statues have special abilities to keep the non-tanks busy. It’s going to be a crazy fight that requires lots of crowd control.

Scott Mercer: The encounter as a whole is known as the “Will of the Emperor,” and it represents the Vault’s last line of defense between the players and whatever mysterious power source originally allowed the Thunder King to rise to power. By the time players complete the raid, they should have a clear understanding of how the mogu were able to dominate Pandaria for so long.

Posted Image

What design challenges have you encountered during the development of the raid so far?

Ion Hazzikostas: In past raids, we’ve worked with a lot of the established races from Warcraft lore. For example, when we sit down to design a troll dungeon, we have a pretty clear idea of what that’s going to look like and what kinds of creatures the players are going to find there — you know, besides just trolls. Pandaria offered us a blank slate of sorts, as the continent has been alluded to in Warcraft lore, but we’ve never really fleshed out the details until now.

Scott Mercer: This meant we’ve spent a lot of time and energy on building out what we call the “kit” for each of the expansion’s new races. A kit includes all kinds of things, from the armor and weapons used by the race to the architecture and environmental themes that go with the race. Part of the “kit” includes what kinds of monsters are found together; for example, the mogu are fond of using quilin statues as guardians, so those two monster types are often seen together. Our primary goal was to make sure the mogu felt visually and thematically distinct from the other Warcraft races, while still making sure they fit into the larger world of Azeroth. Establishing the kit for the mogu, and indeed all of Pandaria’s races, has been a fun challenge.

Let’s talk loot! What rewards await players who are strong enough to take on the raid?

Ion Hazzikostas: The raid rewards players with powerful epic items, depending on the difficulty setting: item level 476 for Raid Finder, 489 for normal mode, and 502 for Heroic. There’s also a new mount that can be obtained by defeating Elegon, a celestial dragon found deep within the Vaults. The mount looks a bit like the Celestial Steed, but in the form of a serpentine dragon.

Posted Image

How does Mogu’shan Vaults fit into the larger raiding plan for Mists of Pandaria?

Scott Mercer: There will be two outdoor world bosses, along with the Mogu’shan Vaults raid instance, available when Mists of Pandaria first launches. One idea we’re considering is to delay opening Mogu’shan Vaults until a week or so after the expansion’s release, similar to how we’ve always handled the start of the PvP season, just to give players a little time to reach level 90 along with their friends and get acclimated to Pandaria’s new 5-player dungeons, daily quests, and scenarios. In any case, Mogu’shan Vaults is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the raid content we have lined up for Mists.

Ion Hazzikostas: Mists of Pandaria will also include two other raid zones, which we plan to make available a few weeks after Mogu’shan Vaults: the Heart of the Fear and Terrace of Endless Spring. These two raids feature 10 bosses between the two of them and play out as a two-part story. In the first raid, the Heart of Fear, the players fight the mantid empress who has been possessed by the Sha of Fear. Sha, for those who don’t know, plague Pandaria as physical manifestations of negative emotions, like fear, doubt, and anger, and they tend to have a corrupting influence wherever they take root. When the players defeat the possessed empress, the Sha flees her body and hides elsewhere. In the Terrace of Endless Spring, the next raid instance, the players track down the fleeing Sha and finish it off. Both of these instances are a higher tier than the Mogu’shan Vaults and are designed to be tackled using gear obtained in the Vaults, which is why we plan to make them accessible a few weeks after the Vaults unlock.

Scott Mercer: Yup, and all of this is just the raid content coming before our first major content update. We’ll be announcing even more raiding details in future when we start discussing patch 5.1.

Posted Image

Thanks for your time.Is there anything else you’d like to share before you go?

Ion Hazzikostas: I just wanted to say thanks to all of our beta testers. We’re very proud of our dungeon and raid content so far, and we’re looking forward to getting it all out there when Mists of Pandaria launches.

Scott Mercer: Yeah, we have big plans for Pandaria’s encounters, and it’s great to see it all starting to come together. Keep the feedback coming!

Learn More About Mists of Pandaria


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Just as a bump the following has been confirmed by a blue on the US forums

September 25: MoP launches

October 2: Mogu'shan Vaults (normal) opens

October 7: Mogu'shan Vaults (LFR) opens, those who cleared normal Vaults can access heroic mode

October 30: Heart of Fear and Terrace of Endless Spring (normal) open, with Terrace only accessible by clearing Heart

November 6: Heart of Fear and Terrace of Endless Spring (LFR) open; queuing for Terrace requires clearing Heart. Those who cleared normal Heart can access heroic Heart, same for Terrace.

Or the full link here

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for sharing this Peelyon ;)

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Similar Content

    • By Zadina
      As the release date for the DVD and Blu-ray of Warcraft approaches, let's take a look at the rewards you can get in Hearthstone, Heroes of the Storm and World of Warcraft by purchasing either version.
      Physical copies of Warcraft on DVD and Blu-ray will have some lucrative goodies for fans of the Warcraft universe. The copies will come with digital codes for a Medivh Mage hero in Hearthstone, Gul'dan in Heroes of the Storm and another copy of World of Warcraft with 30 days of game time.
      Warcraft will be available on September 27 in the U.S. and Canada. It is not known when it is going to be released in Europe and the rest of the world, although French sites report that this should happen around the 11th of October. Lastly, it is not sure if there will be a similar offer in the rest of the world, although we find it unlikely that it won't happen.
      Blizzard Entertainment
      From Legendary and Universal Pictures Home Entertainment, WARCRAFT is preparing to invade homes worldwide, and it’s bringing a trio of movie-inspired digital extras from Blizzard Entertainment into battle! Inside select physical editions of WARCRAFT on Blu-ray™ and DVD, movie fans will find digital keys that unlock the following extras for a trio of Blizzard games:
      Medivh Hero in Hearthstone – Unleash your favorite Mage deck as the Guardian of Tirisfal. Gul’dan Hero in Heroes of the Storm – Rain fel fire down upon the Nexus as this twisted orc Assassin. Digital copy of World of Warcraft – Start your own adventure in Azeroth—or ask a friend to join you on your journey. Includes 30 days of game time for new players. These goodies are available inside select physical WARCRAFT Blu-ray™ and DVD editions only while supplies last. Be sure to pick up your copy wherever Blu-ray™ and DVDs are sold.
      WARCRAFT is available September 27 in the U.S. and Canada, and throughout September and October worldwide. Check product and promotion availability with your local retailers, as extras may differ outside the U.S. and Canada.
    • By Zadina
      You can now stream all your favourite Blizzard games via Facebook!
      Last June, Blizzard Entertainment announced that the popular social media platform would be officially integrated in the client, allowing for a variety of new functionalities. After today's update, you can stream Blizzard games on Facebook. Moreover, you can log into the client by using your Facebook info.
      This feature is available in the Americas, Southeast Asia, Australia and New Zealand, and only on Windows PCs. Other regions and Mac will follow soon.
      Here is a video showcasing the new streaming feature:
      And here are the patch notes, as you can see them in the client:
      Blizzard Entertainment
      Go Live on Facebook and share your epic moments!

      • We've added a Streaming button to the top right of the app window. The first time you press the button, you'll be prompted to log in to Facebook and authorize Blizzard Entertainment to post on your behalf. We will never:
      • Post or share anything on your network without your permission.
      • Share your real name with anyone outside your Facebook network
      • After that, you'll access the Streaming Control Panel. where you can customize your stream if you'd like.
      • In Settings, you can access more options for your hotkey, web., and audio preferences.
      • Once you launch the game of your choice. start your stream by clicking the Start Stream button, or by tapping your hotkey (default is Ctrl + F1). You'll see the Live overlay on the top left of your screen.
      • You can end your stream by pressing the hotkey, again, or by clicking the Stop Stream button on the Streaming Control Panel.

      Note: Streaming Is not supported on Windows XP, Additionally, users with low-end systems may hove problems streaming.

      Quality Settings
      • In the Streaming Settings. you can adjust the quality of your stream. The default option is set to Medium (720p. 30 FPS. 3.0 Mbps).
      Note: Higher quality settings are more demanding on your computer and refereed connection.

      In-Game Overlay
      • You can adjust the position of the in-game overlay (or simply disable it) in the Streaming Settings.

      Webcam Settings
      • You can adjust the position of the in-game overlay (or simply disable it) in the Streaming Settings.

      Audience Selection

      • You can manage the audience and visibility of each Stream using the Audience selector in the Streaming Control Panel.
      • You can post your streams to your timeline. If you manage a Facebook Page, you can post streams there, too.
      • You can adjust the maximum Audience level in your Ape Settings on Facebook. To modify the Audience for your stream:
      • Visit 
      • Select Apps.
      • Select the Blizzard Entertainment app.
      • Adjust the App visibility and post audience.
      • Return to the desktop app.
      • Close and reopen your Streaming Control Panel.
      • Your Audience selector will be updated to reflect the available audiences for your Streams.

      Known Issues
      • Streaming Is not yet available for Mac
      • The webcem can't be used for streaming if it's in use by another application.
      • Games may experience a slightly lower frame rate while streaming.
      • Streaming on slower Internet connections may interfere with streams and computer performance
      • Watching your own stream on Facebook with the capture system sounds option selected may create a sound feedback loop unless the live video is muted on Facebook.
      • Links on the Facebook login dialog do not work. If you need to reset your Facebaok password, use a web browser to visit 
    • By Blainie
      Blizzard has been making efforts to represent their various franchises around the world recently. This is no different, as a glow-in-the-dark mural of Illidan has popped up in Taiwan.
      You can check out the video of the process below:
      It looks like Taiwan is enjoying plenty of attention from the Blizzard crews, with a statue of Arthas going up last month. You can watch the video of that below, just in case you missed it:
    • By Blainie
      Blizzard announced a while back that there was going to be a Legion themed café at Gamescom for all attendees to come and enjoy! Our team at Gamescom has managed to collect some pictures of the venue, as well as of the various activities and refreshments available! Check it out!
      When you enter the café itself, there's no doubt that it feels like you're stumbling into a fel-fueled atmosphere; from the lighting to the decorations, Blizzard has done a superb job preparing the venue. It's definitely a bit daunting looking up those stairs into the eyes of Illidan!

      As you enter the venue, you're faced with a huge orb of energy glowing in the centre, as you can see below:

      Blizzard have made sure you're not just standing around and looking at the venue. There are so many things to do in the café, including accepting a quest from a questgiver, marked precisely by the yellow exclamation mark we all know and love:

      In order to complete your quest, you'll need to take a selfie in front of the meeting stone and post it on social media. Once you complete your quest, you can return to collect your reward of an inflatable Illidari blade for everyone in the photo.

      Once you've grabbed your warglaive, you can venture on to one of the many booths around the café, including:
      A make-up booth, where you can have fel-inspired make-up put on. A VR picture booth, which allows you to pose in a certain position and then turns you into a Demon Hunter of either Night Elf or Blood Elf descent and male or female. You can try out the game on one of the stations around the café.
      Once you're done with visiting the booths, why not sit down and relax with one of the many fel-themed items on the menu, as shown below:

      If you're struggling to read what's on there, here's a full list of the named items, as well as their flavour text:
      THE TERROKAR SPECIAL - "Kind of a warp burger, but at least you know what's in it" NOMI'S CURRYWURST - "100% Orgrimmar-raised pork" CHEF OVERHEAT'S LEGION CHILI - "Can you take the heat?" KUN-LAI NOODLES - "We have it, you should eat it" THE TILLERS RICE BOWL - "Cooked with fresh vegetables from my farm" STUFFED DALAPEÑO PEPPER Desserts
      DELICIOUS CHOCOLATE CAKE - "No tawny (alcohol from WoW) in it, sorry. Eeeps." APPLE CAKE - "Baked with shiny red apples" TIRAMISU GRANNY SMITH'S FRUIT SALAD - "No apples were crushed in the process" Drinks
      DOM-Kölsch on tap Coca-Cola / Zero / Fanta / Sprite Apple Juice Orange Juice Mineral / Still water Coffee Tea Cocktails
      LEGION COCKTAIL - Orange juice, blue Curacao, pineapple juice HORDE COCKTAIL - Wodka, cherry juice, lime juice ALLIANCE COCKTAIL - Wodka, blue Curacao, bitter lemon and lime juice Check out some of our highlights of the café!
    • By Zadina
      Once again, German city Cologne is hosting the world's largest gaming expo, Gamescom! Blizzard will be represented there by all of its gaming titles.
      Blizzard fans visiting Gamescom this year are going to be rewarded, since Blizzard will have a massive booth with all of its games. Obviously, visitors will be able to play the games, watch tournaments, meet some of their favourite professionals and community members, participate in contests and witness some surprise events or important announcements.
      What is there to look forward to for each game? Let's start with Heroes of the Storm: with Auriel just released, the next hero to join the Nexus is still unknown. It is quite probable that a new hero - or perhaps the StarCraft battleground event - will be announced in Gamescom. The Europe Fall Regional will also take place, with the winner securing a spot at BlizzCon. As far as Overwatch is concerned, we are expecting a new Bastion animated short! And who knows? Perhaps, we will get another clue about the mysterious Sombra.
      We are not expecting anything major for Hearthstone and World of Warcraft. Big content updates, that will keep us busy for the next couple of months, are currently being rolled out in both of these games. The same can be said for Diablo, although it would be nice to get some news on the future of the game.
      Blizzard Entertainment
      The world’s largest interactive entertainment trade fair is coming back to Cologne, Germany from August 17-21 this year, and Blizzard Entertainment will be there with our biggest presence to date!     Mark your calendar for 18:30 CEST on Tuesday, August 16, when we release a special preview video of what we’ll be showcasing at gamescom 2016, including some new game content. You'll be able to watch it all live on the Blizzard gamescom hub.     Visitors to the Blizzard gamescom booth in Hall 7 of the Koelnmesse will have the chance to play Overwatch, World of Warcraft, Heroes of the Storm, Hearthstone, Diablo, and StarCraft on more than 500 gaming stations. We’ll also have some epic entertainment on the Blizzard stage, and a few surprises in store.   Warcraft From August 18-21, the Legion Café will bring a recreation of The Fel Hammer to central Cologne to celebrate the upcoming launch of World of Warcraft’s latest expansion Visitors to the Blizzard booth will be able to try out the new Demon Hunter class in advance of the August 30 release of World of Warcraft: Legion Two of the top World of Warcraft guilds, Set Sail for Fail and From Scratch, will race against each other in Legion's top tier difficulty dungeons (Mythic+) live on the Blizzard stage WoW streamer Slootbag will be live-streaming directly from the Blizzard booth  
      StarCraft II
      Professional StarCraft II players will face off in exciting live showmatches on the Blizzard stage The following streamers will be live-streaming directly from the Blizzard booth wintergaming LowkoTV RotterdaM  
      In celebration of Diablo’s 20th anniversary, visitors to the Blizzard booth will be able to play all three Diablo games A 3D artist from the Diablo development team will create a piece of artwork live on the Blizzard stage The following streamers will be live-streaming directly from the Blizzard booth MrLlama Quin69  
      Professional card-slingers and community personalities will battle it out in exciting Hearthstone showmatches on the Blizzard stage The following streamers will be live-streaming directly from the Blizzard booth LotharHS ThijsHS Hafu  
      Heroes of the Storm
      Brawlmania will deliver an epic Heroes of the Storm showdown on the Blizzard stage throughout gamescom, as six teams of influencers and pro players face off in themed showmatches The Heroes of the Storm Europe Fall Regional tournament will take place from August 17-19 on the ESL Arena stage, with the winning team moving on to compete for a piece of the $1,000,000 USD prize pool at the Fall Championship at BlizzCon The following streamers will be live-streaming directly from the Blizzard booth Grubby Sohinki Chu8  
      The world premiere of the new Overwatch animated short will be revealed on stage and via live stream on the Blizzard gamescom hub at 18:00 CEST on Thursday, August 18 The Overwatch Atlantic Showdown tournament will take place from August 20-21, pitting the top four teams from both North America and Europe against each other, with a $100,000 USD prize pool on the line The following streamers will be live-streaming directly from the Blizzard booth Muselk UnitLost AnneMunition   In addition to the above activities, we’ll feature our famous dance and costume contests, signing sessions, quizzes, contests, and more—including two performances from Video Games Live on our stage on Friday, August 19 and Saturday, August 20 at 18:00! Attendees at gamescom will also be able to pick up some licensed apparel and collectibles, including some brand-new items, at the Blizzard store in Hall 5.   Daily Live Streams and Recaps
        Those who can’t make it to gamescom 2016 in person will still be able to catch all the excitement via daily live streams of our stage activities each day on the Blizzard gamescom hub as well as on Facebook and YouTube livestreams. Well-known streamers will also be bringing you live action from the Blizzard booth, which you’ll be able to check out directly from the website, along with a daily recap video each evening at 21:00 CEST. Our gamescom site will also be your source for a full schedule of stage activities, a social wall, and more.     Additional details about Blizzard at gamescom will be available soon, so stay tuned! (source)