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Big Beast Mastery Changes, Portal Removal Reasoning

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We have some big Beast Mastery Hunter changes coming next week which will be hitting the PTR soon, featuring Barbed and Cobra shots, as well as an in-depth explanation on the recent removal of portals and the negative feedback that's triggered, by Kaivax.

Blizzard LogoBM Changes (source)

There’s a significant set of changes to Beast Mastery coming in the content update next week. These were shipped off toward the PTR yesterday, but haven’t appeared there yet:

For the Heart of Azeroth Heart of Azeroth :

  • Feeding Frenzy Feeding Frenzy ’s tooltip damage displayed has been lowered commensurate with Barbed Shot Barbed Shot now ignoring armor. Its total effective damage remains unchanged.

As always, you’ll see these (and everything else) in the final update notes, which we’ll publish just before the update goes live.

And here's the extended explanation on the portal removal and rearranging:

Blizzard LogoPortal Removal (source)

As we read most everything posted here (and elsewhere) about next week’s content update, we can’t help but be impacted by the subject of transportation portal removal. It’s a subject that’s approaching 5000 replies in one thread alone, and the question raised there, repeatedly, has been, “why?” Here’s the answer to that question.

From the beginnings of World of Warcraft, game designers have had a number of guiding principles. Sometimes these notions change quickly, and sometimes they evolve slowly, but a few guiding principles have remained more or less the same throughout WoW’s history. One such lodestar has been “don’t overuse portals between locations in the world”. Too many eliminations of the distances between places can diminish a sense of the world having a meaningful size.

Of course there’s an equal and opposite design consideration—“don’t make it too inconvenient to get from most places to most other places”. Some amount of convenience is vital. Not every visit to a wondrous landscape is your first. We know when it’s your 100th visit, you don’t want the flight over to be the bulk of your time spent. And of course, some players have chosen to play as Warlocks or Mages specifically because those classes offer unique means of transport.

With new expansions, we’ve made a tradition of removing some of the portals from the previous expansion’s cities. The goal with that is to encourage transportation flow through newer places where players are more likely to interact with other players. We neglected to do that initially following Legion (and we never did that following Mists of Pandaria for various reasons), but we feel that we should have. We’re correcting that now.

Boralus and Dazar’alor will continue to offer portals to a full range of capital cities, as well as to Silithus. The portals to Cataclysm zones will remain intact, and many other modes of transportation, such as Dalaran Signet Rings, Karazhan’s ring, the Timeless Isle trinket, Coordination Cloaks, and boats and zeppelins between many regions, will all be retained and functional.

However, we’ve seen how updates to the game can leave the means of accessing different areas feeling increasingly chaotic. For example— today if you go to the Cleft of Shadows in Orgrimmar, you’ll find it dotted with portals in a way that almost looks sporadic. We’re cleaning that up, and we see this as an opportunity to consolidate a lot of travel into a consistent venue with a consistent look and feel, and room for future growth when needed.

We’ve processed a lot of feedback on this, especially feedback about specific locations that feel like they’re going to become disproportionately inconvenient to reach, and we’ve followed that feedback through to the conclusion that you’re seeing on the PTR. We believe that the numerous remaining means of quick access in the game make most locations quite reachable.

If there are any specific locations that feel as though they’re about to become unreasonably inaccessible, we’re certainly open to adding additional means of travel in the future.

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i got jebaited, title said big beast mastery changes. it's just numbers changes. i was hoping for play style changes or effects added to bm cooldowns. 

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12 minutes ago, cmnights said:

i got jebaited, title said big beast mastery changes. it's just numbers changes. i was hoping for play style changes or effects added to bm cooldowns. 

Nah, BM's play style will remain terrible. 

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11 hours ago, cmnights said:

title said big beast mastery changes

I thought the same.

Its just a buff.  As far as numbers are concerned im not sure what % its going to be, but its just a buff to a few targeted abilities.  |


As to portal removal... I get the disspleasure.  trust me.  I liked having portals to various places in reach of a few other portals..

But I also get their point.  It was a jumble.  Portal-ing everywhere to get to another portal to get to a place youre going didnt make sense.  

Are there other things that dont make sense in this game?  def.  

But I dont think that justifies PURPOSELY keeping something as convoluted and haphazardly laid out as the portal network was.  I was honestly surprised they kept the legion portals around as long as they did, which was addressed in the article also.  Same with pandaland.  

Edited by PatrickHenry
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Kirin Tor Mages laid off by Sylvanas to improve national security. You heard it here first.

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Too bad our Hearthstones can't hold more than one location at a time; would be nice to have 1 specialized Hearthstone that saves up to 3-5 locations and gives us a pop up window allowing us to pick the location we desire.  Similar to Mage portals.  That is just silly wishful thinking on my part.  But after this patch does go live the Dalaran and Draenor Hearthstone are pretty much irrelevant unless those with leveling alts that are trying to catch up to the current xpac I guess.

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