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Blizzard are moving into the next phase of same-faction battleground testing in the Burning Crusade Classic, and also went ito a lot of detail into theit thinking behind it all, as well as the changes and features coming in thise second wave of testing.
Same-Faction BGs (Source)
Over the last few days, we’ve read thousands of pieces of feedback on the same-faction Battleground test, and we’ve been working through what we can do in Burning Crusade Classic to meet as many of our goals as possible.
Some players literally asked for more understanding of our goals, so we’d like to list out the goals we think are most pertinent to the Battleground queue situation:
Emulate the design pillars and intentions of original Burning Crusade game systems. Leverage modern tech and design to address modern issues. Make surgical changes to the game to improve the player experience. Address player concerns in ways that capture the spirit of the original design of the game. We’ve heard a clear majority of players telling us that they preferred same-faction Battlegrounds after our first test. During that test, we saw the benefits of drastically lowered queue times and less unavoidable ganking in the outdoor world. However, there were a significant number of concerns registered on other related topics.
We noticed that players were dismayed when the system occasionally launched an Alliance vs. Alliance Battleground. We reduced the likelihood of that a couple of hours into the test, and we think we can do a little more there.
The quick queues revealed that a noticeable number of players were doing BGs in organized raids. This makes sense; the time it takes to form a premade is time well-invested for those players. But for the large number of players who choose to queue alone, there’s essentially no hope of winning the BG. There are a couple of ways we can try addressing this, and in this next test, we’d like to try restricting groups to a maximum of 5 players in all Battlegrounds. This should have the added benefit of allowing players who are in groups to quest while waiting in queue for Battlegrounds.
A major point of discussion was the perception that the faction a majority of players chose for their main character would see all players switch to it, unless we change the game to either reward the minority faction, punish the majority faction, or prevent players from choosing to play on the majority faction in the first place. As you can see (and has been discussed at great length here and elsewhere), most such changes that might come to mind would conflict with our stated goals above. Still, we’d like to see what happens when we place a reward for the minority faction into the game. Globally, the faction imbalance is small, but the trend over the last few months has been towards a lower BG participation rate among Alliance players.
We’ll plan to run the next test for a week, starting with weekly maintenance (Wednesday 21 July in this region), by enabling all of the following:
Same-faction Battlegrounds will be allowed by the matchmaker. The matchmaker will take a little more time to find an opposite-faction match than it did during the first test. Groups will be restricted to a maximum of 5 players when joining the queue. We’re adding an enlistment bonus for Alliance players who participate. The enlistment bonus will be a repeatable Level 70 quest offered by the Alliance Brigadier General in any Alliance capital city or Shattrath. The quest rewards a Battleground win with a box of loot that includes an appropriate amount of consumables, crafting materials, and currencies/tokens.
We’re planning to end this test with scheduled weekly maintenance next week (28 July). We prefer having a clear beginning and end to it so that we can do more comparative analysis and take care as we decide what would be best for the game and players going forward.
We think it’s worth noting upfront that the most impactful part of this test should be the restriction on premades, and we’re going to be highly sensitive to how Battleground PvP feels for both players who usually queue up alone and players who would have otherwise formed raids before queueing. As before, we’re going to open a new thread here when the test begins, and we’ll be looking there for your thoughts on how the test went after you’ve experienced it.
And as always, thank you very much for all of your valuable feedback on the game!
Bots have been around for a long time and will be here after we're all dead and gone. Ok that turned dark really fast, but my point is bots = many. Today we're taking a look at one truly funny video of a player dealing with this ever present infestation, perhaps not in the most original or incredible way, but the video and execution of it was just top level, so I thought it was worth a look.
First things first, a little backstory as a few days ago a post trended on the WoW Classic reddit, as a player spotted a stuck level 58 boosted bot near the Maraudon entrance:
Apparently this gave (the honestly completely appropriately named) Sick_Nerd_Baller an idea, and it was executed brilliantly, so I won't spoil it (there's also a BIT of a message at the end). Make sure to enable the sound and play the video from the start (as it unfortunately autoplays).
Today's giant set of hotfixes included some for BCC as well, so we separate them out for better visibility.
July 6 (Source)
Burning Crusade Classic
“Tear of the Earthmother”, “The Lexicon Demonica”, and “Underworld Loam” quests can now be completed on Heroic dungeon difficulty. The Shattered Halls Fixed an issue where Warchief Kargath Bladefist would not cast Blade Dance in certain situations.
Blizzard are looking to alleviate some long battleground queues in BCC by testing out regular queue same-faction conflicts! Tests begin tomorrow and Alterac Valley will not be included.
Hello, Battleground enthusiasts!
As soon as we saw Battleground queue times go way up a few weeks ago, we got to work on our options for addressing the situation. They’ve all been discussed here and elsewhere, as you know, and in addition to following your discussions closely, we looked at game history and data. What was most evident from all of your feedback was: players want to continue to play on their chosen side of the faction conflict, players don’t want to wait in long queues for BGs, and players don’t want a highly convoluted mechanism for getting into a BG.
To solve those issues as best we can, we’ve been internally testing a configuration where the War Games system is used to bring about Horde vs. Horde or Alliance vs. Alliance Battlegrounds from the regular queue, and we’re ready to test it in the live game. Here’s the plan:
Starting tomorrow (Friday, July 2), we’re going to enable same-faction Battlegrounds. You’ll queue for BGs as usual, and the matchmaker will first try to make an opposite-faction match for you. If an opposite-faction match cannot be quickly made, you’ll be matched against a team from your faction. Rewards such as Honor and Reputation will be assigned as usual. We’ve been thinking of these like military training exercises, and to help get that feeling across in-game, we’re testing putting masks and tabards on the team playing out of the enemy faction’s base.
Please note that same-faction play won’t be available for Alterac Valley, which was never hooked up for War Games and would be particularly awkward for the team that found themselves fighting alongside a great number of enemy NPCs.
We’ll follow the action closely throughout the weekend, and with scheduled maintenance next week (July 6 in this region), we’re going to return the matchmaker to its regular configuration and analyze what happened.
When same-faction play goes live tomorrow, we’ll open a new feedback thread in this forum. After you’ve played some BGs, please come to that new thread and let us know how it went.
This is another very weird one, coming from Burning Crusade Classic this time, as a GM seemingly took the word of one player over another and removed an equipped and enchanted BiS weapon while the character was offline due to "ninjalooting". The story showcases the worst and best of Blizzard support.
Pxara has had a rough few days, as a PUG Karazhan run ended with the best news possible, was followed by the worst news possible and then, finally, good news again at the very end. The tale involves a falsely reserved BiS weapon, a won roll for it, some arena fun, a GM taking it away as the player was offline, a "we took the weapon because you ninjalooted it and the case is closed" message, and then finally a senior GM returning it with a 30 day game time apology! This story has everything!
So, short story: PUG Karazhan run, BiS Light's Justice drops, Pxara wants it but another player says it's reserved. Turns out it isn't, raid leader says just roll for it, Pxara wins the roll and gets the mace. Other player then insults Pxara, as well as the following day but all seems fine, the mace is great, Pxara borrows 500G to get an expensive enchant put on it and heals well in the arena. The day after that Pxara logs in and is suddenly healing a LOT less in the arena, only to realize the mace is gone. GM took the mace due to a report of "ninjalooting" and "considered the matter closed" and even closed the ticket. Pxara turned to reddit and the official forums for help, and soon thereafter a higher level GM/Blizzard employee fixed the matter, apologized and gave Pxara 30 days of free playtime.
And the original GM that made the mistake also apologized!
In a long list of bizarre details here, the fact that a GM would get involved in a (false, in this case) ninjalooting incident is perhaps the most puzzling, as this hasn't been policy for a long time now - perhaps the GM was confused and thought it was actual BC and not Classic?
In any case this is both an example of huge GM overreach but also some solid accountability, as the issue was resolved very quickly and there was even a bonus to be had! The lesson here would probably be to share when something like this happens in public, as despite the fact that we're can't be sure if the official forum and reddit posts were the reason it got fixed, it seems very likely.
Here's the full post with all the bizarre details: