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Three Under-The-Hood Improvements In WoW Patch 6.1

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Along with the previously noted Twitter integration and in-game content additions ranging from Garrison changes and DMF updates to permanent Pepes, the Warcraft development team has included three brilliant system/interface improvements that you may not fully appreciate - yet.

 

1. Improved Anti-Aliasing

 

Anti-aliasing is the technology that is used when rendering in three dimensions in games to limit or eliminate the jagged edges you see, smoothing them into the expected clean lines or rounded corners they're supposed to represent.

 

Prior to Warlords being released, Blizzard dropped support for Multisample Anti-Aliasing (MSAA), instead choosing to use the less resource-intensive Conservative Morphological Anti-Aliasing (CMAA). In 6.1, in addition to bringing MSAA back, they're also adding two even more powerful anti-aliasing options - Supersample Anti-Aliasing (SSAA), and a combination SSAA + CMAA high-end choice.

 

Some of the most visible effects of anti-aliasing are only visible when you're in-game and moving around, and can't be adequately shown off any other way, but Bendak over at Eyes of the Beast has put together a set of screenshots at every level of anti-aliasing to give you a little bit of an impression.

 

If you have a higher end graphics card, you'll be able to try out these new options in 6.1 and see what level of performance you can optimize to.

 

2. Death Log

 

Although previously easily possible in a variety of ways - combat logs, existing addons, external log analysis, etc. - the development team has included a Death Log that you can bring up to understand what killed you. This will be very helpful for players who are struggling to identify damage combinations that are killing them in raids or PvP.

 

MMO-Champion provided an excellent example screenshot:

 

deathRecap.jpg

 

3. Colorblind Mode

 

Blizzard has not always been known for the accessibility of their games, but has made some very strong improvements in this space over the last five years. Patch 6.1 is bringing a much more robust set of colorblind filters and adjustments to WoW.

 

For a quick look at the new colorblind filter menu, check out perculia's post on Wowhead with a look at the interface. There are also some sample screenshots from Pandaria on MMO-Champion.

 

If you didn't already know, Icy Veins also provides colorblind markers on our guides! Simply click the + show color blind markers link (e.g. under Talent Choices on this Arcane Mage Talent Choices guide).

 

 

 

If you haven't already, go test the WoW 6.1 PTR out! You can see all of these features for yourself.

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Pretty underwhelming patch if I'm honest, disappointing considering it's the flagship patch, after what has been a big improvement with the launch of WoD.

 

Obviously we have seen the comments today that 6.1 should spark some discussion, unfortunately unless something new or a big change is coming they havn't announced yet, this seems a pretty underwhelming patch. 

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