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War Mode Faction Balance Hotfix

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War Mode has been improved recently, with a hotfix that will force a more even ratio of both factions present in each shard. While it's unclear when "some time ago" was exactly, this should help with the faction imbalance players have been encountering. It won't, however, be an instant nor absolute fix for the issue, as it still takes some time for the shard to balance itself out. There will also be more improvements coming with 8.1, including better rewards for the underrepresented faction in the shard.

Blizzard LogoWar Mode Faction Balance (source)

Some time ago we made a hotfix to War Mode which enforces all War Mode shards that have both Alliance and Horde in them to have a stricter, more even ratio. We’ve been monitoring the results and so far we’ve noticed a significant improvement in “fair and balanced” shards. So much so that it’s safe to say that if you are Alliance, and you see Horde in the outdoor world in War Mode, you are a relatively even horde to alliance ratio shard. There are some rare exceptions, such as when a raid of 40 players enter a zone. It may take a bit for the “shard manager” to compensate and balance the shard.

We do have some plans in store in Tides of Vengeance (Patch 8.1) to entice the underrepresented faction with greater rewards to increase participation and create more active Horde/Allianced mixed War Mode shards. The intent of those rewards is not to give the underrepresented faction some “compensation” for being outnumbered in a War Mode shard (since that really can’t happen anymore).

We're also looking forward to what you all think about the Incursions in War Mode for 8.1, since it brings Horde and Alliance to the same location which should create some pretty fun skirmishes.
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play horde? turn on WM. play alliance? turn it off and never, EVER think about turning it back on again. i hate what they have done to servers with sharding and cross realm BS.

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What annoys me is how often it's portrayed as "HORDE OUTNUMBERS!!!!onEONEONE!" when it differs greatly by region and time-zone. If I turn War-mode on as OCE Horde I'm begging for 50 alliance to come stab me. Getting the balance is good and important, no matter which faction is outnumbered.

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2 hours ago, Demonpuke said:

play horde? turn on WM. play alliance? turn it off and never, EVER think about turning it back on again. i hate what they have done to servers with sharding and cross realm BS.

I learned this lesson very quickly, i was level 30 in duskwood with warmode on and there was a level ?? ganking everyone for the fun of it and to prevent us from escaping, he killed the gryphon master and just kept killing everyone in war mode, this type of behavior in my opinion should be against the rules, i mean i can understand getting jumped by a couple of players around my level and thats fine, atleast i have a chance to fight back, but level 30 vs 120........sorry, but that is not fair and should be against the rules, with the punishment of perm-ban......i love challenge and competition, but when its unfair, even if its entirely in my favor is just not fun, since there is no chance for me to lose....you know?

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1 hour ago, Lithari said:

I learned this lesson very quickly, i was level 30 in duskwood with warmode on and there was a level ?? ganking everyone for the fun of it and to prevent us from escaping, he killed the gryphon master and just kept killing everyone in war mode, this type of behavior in my opinion should be against the rules, i mean i can understand getting jumped by a couple of players around my level and thats fine, atleast i have a chance to fight back, but level 30 vs 120........sorry, but that is not fair and should be against the rules, with the punishment of perm-ban......i love challenge and competition, but when its unfair, even if its entirely in my favor is just not fun, since there is no chance for me to lose....you know?

A better solution would be to make players unattackable if their level is a lot lower than yours. 

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1 hour ago, Lithari said:

I learned this lesson very quickly, i was level 30 in duskwood with warmode on and there was a level ?? ganking everyone for the fun of it and to prevent us from escaping, he killed the gryphon master and just kept killing everyone in war mode, this type of behavior in my opinion should be against the rules, i mean i can understand getting jumped by a couple of players around my level and thats fine, atleast i have a chance to fight back, but level 30 vs 120........sorry, but that is not fair and should be against the rules, with the punishment of perm-ban......i love challenge and competition, but when its unfair, even if its entirely in my favor is just not fun, since there is no chance for me to lose....you know?

 

11 minutes ago, VictorVakaras said:

A better solution would be to make players unattackable if their level is a lot lower than yours. 

The solution is to turn off warmode.

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1 minute ago, PaasHaaS said:

 

The solution is to turn off warmode.

Not the same at all.  Just makes it so you face players of the same level/ilvl. Blizzard is supposedly all about things being fair and balanced,  not sure what's fair about a lvl 120 slaughtering lowbies.

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52 minutes ago, VictorVakaras said:

A better solution would be to make players unattackable if their level is a lot lower than yours. 

Or you know turn off warmode because war is in the name and if you want balanced pvp go do a bg.

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6 hours ago, Demonpuke said:

play horde? turn on WM. play alliance? turn it off and never, EVER think about turning it back on again. i hate what they have done to servers with sharding and cross realm BS.

Would not make this better at all if you want things to change just make group or atleast keep WM on may be more challenging sometimes but if you love PVP it shouldn't be a problem. In an other hand if you are making this to get better reward and are not happy by getting killed on objectives then i can't help (talking for level 110-120 only ofc)

Edited by MetalMallard
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Guys, you do know that just saying 'turn off war mode' is not solving the problem, its like sticking your head in the sand and ignoring the problem, i am guessing you guys take part in this 120 vs 30 type of tihng? that is the only logical conclusion, unless you are telling me that you are really that dumb? Please tell me its the first option and not the second, cause i would really feel pity for ya. 🙂

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1 hour ago, Lithari said:

Guys, you do know that just saying 'turn off war mode' is not solving the problem, its like sticking your head in the sand and ignoring the problem, i am guessing you guys take part in this 120 vs 30 type of tihng? that is the only logical conclusion, unless you are telling me that you are really that dumb? Please tell me its the first option and not the second, cause i would really feel pity for ya. 🙂

How is turning off warmode not a solution? And if you say the XP buff, that's reward for the risk you are taking.

Blizzard will never punish PvP griefing because there is always a solution, and if that means getting a high level char from your own faction to help, then that's what Blizzard wants you to do. From the Support Site:

"All players can actively choose when they wish to engage in PvP combat by enabling or disabling War Mode in the talents interface while in Stormwind or Orgrimmar. If you do not wish to engage in PvP combat, do not activate War Mode.

War Mode allows open combat between players of opposing factions that have opted in to PvP (Player versus Player). Players that activate War Mode are encouraged to resolve cross-faction disputes on their own. The Game Master staff will not intervene in PvP disputes.

The following actions may be considered dishonorable but are considered legitimate PvP tactics and will not be addressed by our Game Master staff:

  • - Corpse camping
  • - Killing players well below your level"
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1 hour ago, jinsu2301 said:

How is turning off warmode not a solution? And if you say the XP buff, that's reward for the risk you are taking.

Blizzard will never punish PvP griefing because there is always a solution, and if that means getting a high level char from your own faction to help, then that's what Blizzard wants you to do. From the Support Site:

"All players can actively choose when they wish to engage in PvP combat by enabling or disabling War Mode in the talents interface while in Stormwind or Orgrimmar. If you do not wish to engage in PvP combat, do not activate War Mode.

War Mode allows open combat between players of opposing factions that have opted in to PvP (Player versus Player). Players that activate War Mode are encouraged to resolve cross-faction disputes on their own. The Game Master staff will not intervene in PvP disputes.

The following actions may be considered dishonorable but are considered legitimate PvP tactics and will not be addressed by our Game Master staff:

  • - Corpse camping
  • - Killing players well below your level"

So, in other words they endorse ganking and pretty much unfair combat?? oh, so i guess they might as well allow trainers to be used in all their games with no penalty, since they clearly don't give a **** about fair play.....unless they only care about fair play when it suits their benefit.

Also, when it comes to the XP buff, sorry, but having the war mode on from stormwind to duskwood (taxi ride) and for 5 minutes after that getting killed by a player that is clearly level 120 over 30 times......sorry, but for it to be worth it, the xp bonus needs to be 100% xp bonus and 100% rep bonus.

Edited by Lithari

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5 hours ago, MetalMallard said:

Would not make this better at all if you want things to change just make group or atleast keep WM on may be more challenging sometimes but if you love PVP it shouldn't be a problem. In an other hand if you are making this to get better reward and are not happy by getting killed on objectives then i can't help (talking for level 110-120 only ofc)

Depends on luck, if you encounter shard that is new and still being filled, you will see huge disproportions in numbers, although Horde is more likely to have more players in there. Top communities, along with those who want to be in those guilds or just want bigger recruitment pools, have switched to Horde, if they used to be Alliance previously, so War Mode often ends as "default passive bonus" for Horde, since there is no risk involved as they won't see many members from other faction. Right now, on EU Alliance is only about 43%, and this number will continue to drop if nothing is done, as "snowball effect" continues, when more people switch to simply be on the more populated side and with larger playerbase for recruitment. The only way to stop it, is probably to introduce some crossfaction play, however this likely won't fix difference in numbers, only slow the process down.

Edited by Arcling
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Isn't there a cap to the % of xp bonus or did that change? like 50% or something which is easily done via heirlooms. so warmode wouldn't really benefit the lowbies that complain about being wrecked by 120 rogues. If heirlooms cant be purchased by lowbies the reduction to exp thats coming will help entice lowbies to leave it off. Now warmode may be harsh for the 110-119 range due to the amount of 120's running around, but I had a blast with friends leveling from 110 to 120 on main and alts and continue to run warmode as 120 while rarely running into issue, even by myself. If i do run into a group that bends me over, im not going to complain. The problem I have with Warmode is it feels no different at 120 whether its on or off. I haven't been ganked or gangraped once at 120 with WM on.

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8 hours ago, PatrickHenry said:

Thankfully you can shut it off since it is not worth it!

I really don't think blizzard knows what rewarding means....i think they lost the meaning of that word when activision took over.

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So can someone clarify something for me, what exactly is the complaint about when a max level is killing NPCs and players in low level areas?

 

I remember playing on Darkspear back in Wrath for the better part of six months and as it was a PvP only server this stuff happened all the time in both the Horde and Alliance areas. Was always a pain when quest givers and flight masters got killed while you were out doing quests. I then got tired of dealing with that as I'd only joined that server when some friends wanted me to join their group and went and joined a different PvE server where if I wanted to PvP then I would intentionally do so but wasn't an always on thing.

 

Now that this is just literally a toggle option in the main cities and not a server choice, not even for a 100% xp and rep buff do I intend to have that on for either faction unless I'm willing to deal with stuff that has been happening probably since launch.

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17 hours ago, Lithari said:

Guys, you do know that just saying 'turn off war mode' is not solving the problem, its like sticking your head in the sand and ignoring the problem, i am guessing you guys take part in this 120 vs 30 type of tihng? that is the only logical conclusion, unless you are telling me that you are really that dumb? Please tell me its the first option and not the second, cause i would really feel pity for ya. 🙂

Please stop whining. 

When on a PvP server, PvP happens and ganking happens. End of story.

When turning WM on, PvP happens, and ganking happens. End of story.

If you get ganked, call on world defense, or general for help or in your guild. That is what we are doing. Very often we get a: "There is a group of xx alliances ganking us here, please help", and then we come and help and get honor and that's it.

If you can't take it, turn WM off and go in BG to catch up with the missing XP and do some PvP. You can get almost one level for each bg won, and you get a chance to get gear.

But whatever you do, stop whining and insulting other. That's not a very bright thing to do.

Regards,

Lehiya

 

 

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2 hours ago, Lehiya said:

Please stop whining. 

When on a PvP server, PvP happens and ganking happens. End of story.

When turning WM on, PvP happens, and ganking happens. End of story.

If you get ganked, call on world defense, or general for help or in your guild. That is what we are doing. Very often we get a: "There is a group of xx alliances ganking us here, please help", and then we come and help and get honor and that's it.

If you can't take it, turn WM off and go in BG to catch up with the missing XP and do some PvP. You can get almost one level for each bg won, and you get a chance to get gear.

But whatever you do, stop whining and insulting other. That's not a very bright thing to do.

Regards,

Lehiya

 

 

Yeah - great post.

War Mode isn't about fair play. It's about faction warfare. That isn't always fair. This is not a "problem" for Blizzard to fix. Complaining and saying "if you're Alliance, turn it off and NEVER turn it back on" is EXACTLY why the player made problem exists. I encounter more Alliance players that turn on War Mode solely for the 10% buff and then complain in /1 "Horde can't fight 1v1 cuz they bad lul".

No. There seems to be a greater number of Horde that group up to go have fun in War Mode by participating in world pvp - faction warfare.

When they Alliance players actually group up, in this multiplayer game, and fight back, as you should if you have turned War Mode on, big fun battles commence.

If you don't want to PvP. Turn it off. If you want to PvP and constantly complain that the Horde gang up and grief - actually talk to your fellow players and group up.

Thanks.

Edited by slypenguin0
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Its quite simple remove the +10% bonus in warmode...and i dont think there is a reason to rage....

I mean why after many years playing in a pve server you are required to go pvp now for the bonus xp....

Now for players that played bofero in pvp servers nothing changes.... You are used to get ganked in lvling... ok:)

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20 hours ago, Arcling said:

Depends on luck, if you encounter shard that is new and still being filled, you will see huge disproportions in numbers, although Horde is more likely to have more players in there. Top communities, along with those who want to be in those guilds or just want bigger recruitment pools, have switched to Horde, if they used to be Alliance previously, so War Mode often ends as "default passive bonus" for Horde, since there is no risk involved as they won't see many members from other faction. Right now, on EU Alliance is only about 43%, and this number will continue to drop if nothing is done, as "snowball effect" continues, when more people switch to simply be on the more populated side and with larger playerbase for recruitment. The only way to stop it, is probably to introduce some crossfaction play, however this likely won't fix difference in numbers, only slow the process down.

You are correct and this is sad that it is dropping like that i'm from EU and particularly HYJAL (32% alliance) but i just never toggled off my WarMode at all from level 110 and never get involved in such disproportions that it would make me desactivate it or even leave the game and wait them to leave. Whenever i see a location with way more horde i either attack them anyway cause as this is not a huge threat for us more "low skills" player are there and easy to kill or i create group using LFG tools and start a "war" because this is what i like in the game now. I everyday see people whining on the /1 channel but this is not my experience of the game. I would like to see something done to bring back more balance in faction count but i can't think of a way to correct for the moment unfortunately as for example a majority of French streamer are horde and new player wants to follow them so the only way would be to unite and create big event like TromaFR did.
Anyway i'm glad you answer me, have a nice day.

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9 hours ago, Lehiya said:

If you can't take it, turn WM off and go in BG to catch up with the missing XP and do some PvP. You can get almost one level for each bg won, and you get a chance to get gear.

This is not the solution. Ganking isn't an issue, as much as disproportions in numbers. Less players in total, means less potential players interested in forming a group, more and more people turning it off, as there are less players on that side. This results in more and more transferring to dominant faction. 

6 hours ago, slypenguin0 said:

If you don't want to PvP. Turn it off. If you want to PvP and constantly complain that the Horde gang up and grief - actually talk to your fellow players and group up.

If nothing is done, like the mentioned crossfaction play, at one point, as a Horde, you simply aren't going to see any players to fight against or some rare instances. And it's going to affect more things, enjoy your 2 hour bg queues, I guess... As most expansions favored racials on the Horde, top pve and pvp communities and their followers have moved over, even if racials don't mean as much now, these people are going to stay now, as there is no point coming back for smaller playerbase and recruitment options. Racials should have been made into completely cosmetic or out of combat things years ago, it's late to do this now, so some other solutions are needed as well.

Edited by Arcling

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      Difficulty or Tedium?
      The main topic for Classic at the moment would be whether the game is actually harder or just has more redundant activities you have to do before doing the stuff that's really fun. This is actually a good discussion to have, and not just for WoW, but gaming in general. The main sticking point for now, as most people are on (relatively) low levels is the breaks between killing mobs, especially for mana users. In the beginning it's actually refreshing having to think about what you can and can't pull, not just running into a bunch of mobs and killing them in *insert current optimal time to kill Blizzard determined is the most fun*. The food/drink breaks after a few (or even one) mobs provide time to actually look around the scenery and the mobs you're facing, and while there isn't much strategy involved at these levels, you still at least pretend to plan out how you're going to get to that quest mob without being killed by the 4 random ones surrounding them. Not being able to pull whatever mob you want, and actually having to check what mobs are there when you don't have interrupts yet (casters tend to be a nightmare) is definitely more difficult in a real way than what we have today. As a caster, having to actually think about which spells to use based on mana cost (and perhaps even using lower ranked ones) is definitely more difficult and requires more engagement with your character than we have in modern WoW.

      Me after 1 plainstrider
      However, after a while the novelty of it wears off and you do start getting a little bored of all the eating and drinking (and wondering why your character isn't getting to Kul Tiran levels of fat), especially if you hop on to BfA for a bit in between. The difference is huge and once you're used to just slamming into 5 mobs and downing them quickly it can get a bit boring to just pull 1 mob at a time and then wait and wait. The really low levels aren't that different between live and Classic in terms of gameplay however, as the small amount of abilities means combat isn't exactly the most exciting thing in either. On live you get past that pretty quickly, but it takes a while longer in Classic (especially if you're playing solo).
      In Classic, playing different classes actually feels different in more ways than just their abilities, at least if you think about it a little. Playing a priest, you really want to find a group because that's what the class was designed for, which is both good and bad - you're stuck very slowly leveling if you're solo, emphasizing the frustration of the slow pulling, but having different classes require different gameplay can be good. If you want to play a priest you're going to have to be more social by default, just whisper the guy you see killing stuff next to you and go level together, you'll immediately have a better time of it (this part is particularly exacerbated in the beta, as there are fewer players).
      In the end, while it may be a huge cop-out, it really does come down to personal preference. Some people will simply not be able to handle the huge downtime between pulls, not being able to buy a new skill rank because you spent all your money on food and drinks (mages were popular for a reason back then), the very slow pace of leveling, and a whole lot more frustrations and not user-friendly features. On the other hand, the experience really is significantly different enough from modern WoW that it does feel enough like a "new" game, or at least a new and different expansion. An expansion that has many more differences than the last 3 or so, something that's both new and old and familiar. And, yes, it also offers massive quantities of nostalgia for those of us that played Vanilla, but what's so wrong about that?

      After the first 2, I actually forgot to take more screenshots, so here's Stan barely being able to afford skills because of his nasty water addiction.
      A simple truth
      The simple truth behind all of this bickering and squabbling is that there really isn't a bad way to enjoy a game. You like the feeling of Classic taking you back to your young(er) days and that rush of falling in love with WoW for the first time? You like the slower pace of both combat and leveling? You like that the social aspects of the game take a front seat? Good, enjoy it! You prefer modern WoW and BfA with it's tons of improvements, smoother design and more player-friendly features? Great, enjoy it! It doesn't matter whether you prefer modern WoW or Classic or WotLK or whichever your personal high-point was (it was Burning Crusade and Legion for me), you're not wrong. You literally can't be. No matter what anyone says in all these heated discussions, they care about WoW, in whatever form they prefer it. So why can't this be enough of a commonality for us to have a civil discourse?
      I wanted to talk more about Classic here and my experience with it, especially relating to my Vanilla days, but somehow I kept writing about this rift that's forming in the WoW community. I can't seem to shake it, and for all the many, MANY times WoW was diagnosed as "dying" (and never did/never will), this one actually worries me. Some people have worried that Classic servers will split the community because BfA and Classic can't play together and few people will have the time to play both, but I'm worried it will REALLY split the community on a more philosophical level. At the moment WoW is back to being the most watched game on Twitch, beating out Fortnite and the rest, so shouldn't this be a happy moment for all of us that care about the game? Regardless of whether you enjoy BfA, or are holding on for the next expansion to fix things, or can't wait for Classic, can we at least TRY to keep things civil? We can disagree all day long, and I'm the first to put my opinions out there, but just don't accuse people of being... whatever it is you think they are. Argue facts, discuss calmly (or well, at least try to), and if you see the other person isn't doing the same, just politely stop talking to them. It's that simple.
      Next time I'll hopefully be talking more about the game itself than the narrative around it, but until then: enjoy what you enjoy and don't get sucked in to discussions about how you're wrong to do so.
      What is Classic really like and why is it causing such a rift in the WoW community?
    • By Stan
      Venturebeat interviewed J. Allen Brack and he talked about Classic WoW, Diablo Immortal, and Blizzard games in general.
      You can read the full interview here.
      Interview Highlights
      Brack played every Blizzard game, but World of Warcraft will always be closest to his heart. World of Warcraft changed Blizzard. When the game launched back in 2004, the company had 300 employees. Currently, they have 4,300 employees. They've got more games that they're working on now than at any other time in the history of Blizzard. Not every game released by Blizzard needs to cater to everyone. It's fine if you don't like a certain game. Mobile is a platform on its own, similar to consoles or PC. The games they're developing for mobile are going to provide an authentic experience, but mobile titles aren't trying to replicate PC experience. Nintendo has been a great partner and they are happy with how the Diablo III panned out. Switch has some unique properties that consoles don't have. From a player perspective, Brack's proud of his guild downing Ragnaros back in Vanilla. Kael'thas was also a hard boss during the Burning Crusade, so defeating him was also considered a feat for the President of Blizzard. Doing the Argus patch in Legion was quite the challenge. Mists of Pandaria was the most misunderstood expansion. They've been experimenting for 15 years with content schedule for the game and figured out that the two-year expansion cycle with 3 major patches is the right thing. They were thinking about making Argus an entire expansion, but ended up not doing so.
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