Patch 5.4.2 is live this week. I know you all are slackers when it comes to reading patch notes, so here’s the major changes: You can now mail account bound items cross-realm. There’s also a raid browser that’s updated with additional Mists content (it’s meh, honestly).
Players are now able to place raid markers in the world even while dead.
I guess I can safely soak Malkorok puddles now.
Changes to Flex
At BlizzCon, we'd discussed some improvements to our Flexible scaling system that would minimize the existence and impact of any real or perceived "breakpoints." Our design goal has always been for the system to be neutral with respect to group size. Specifically, you should never feel encouraged to turn away interested players whose skill/gear level matches the rest of the group's, basic role composition constraints notwithstanding. But at the same time, you shouldn't feel like you need to go out and grab warm bodies if you have a perfectly serviceable raid already assembled. Clearly we have not yet fully realized those goals.
In general, the existing healing/damage scaling slightly favors larger groups, since boss health and damage scale up more slowly than does raid throughput. To use a specific example, an 18-player raid with 12 damage-dealers will kill a boss slightly faster than a 10-player raid with 6 damage-dealers (assuming equal skill/gear between the two groups). But it is true that currently some specific abilities exhibit breakpoints, where adding an extra player causes an extra add to spawn, or an ability to strike an additional target.
To help smooth out difficulty scaling as you add or remove players from your Flexible raid, we will be implementing one of our planned Warlords changes to the scaling system ahead of schedule. In the near future, several boss abilities that target more players as the size of a Flex raid increases will use weighted randomization rather than strict breakpoints.
An example to illustrate what I mean:
Today, Sun Tenderheart's Shadow Word: Bane ability afflicts 2 targets if your raid size is between 10 and 14, but begins to hit a third target at 15.
Once our upcoming change is in place, if you have a 13-player raid, there will be a 60% chance for each cast of the ability to hit 3 targets, and a 40% chance for it to hit 2. If you add an extra player, and thus have 14, there will now be an 80% chance for 3 debuffs to go out, and a 20% chance for only 2.
In short, with respect to this particular ability, adding an extra player will always give you an average of 0.2 extra Bane debuffs. No more breakpoints!
There will be a handful of exceptions where breakpoints remain necessary. Imprison on Sha of Pride is probably the most notable such example, where you really want to pre-plan who will cover which prisons, and having a random number of targets each cast would cause frustrating unpredictability.
There's nothing wrong with 14-player groups -- 14 players is a great size for a raid. But so is 15. And 19. And 12. And 22. We just want to help make sure that good players aren't being turned away from groups because of the notion that their presence will make things harder for everyone.
A pity, Sha prisons are one of the biggest reasons people go for 14. I want to know how Malkorok void zone spawning area expands as people add, currently that seems to be 10-15 you get half the room, 16-25 the whole room.
That's interesting, since currently the "magic number" for getting a third Imprison target is 18 players.
The way Malkorok Implosions should work is that with 14+ players (yes, 14) you get a fourth spawning, and then an additional one for each 3 players past that. If you're seeing a huge jump in the number of Implosions spawning based on a small change in raid size, that sounds like a bug, and I'd love to hear more so that we can investigate the issue.
(Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
- Temporal Shield's healing should now correctly modified by effects that affect healing (Battle Fatigue, Mortal Strike, Dampening).
Warrior (Forums / Skills / Talent Calculator)
- Intervene no longer removes movement-impairing effects on use. The talent Safeguard will continue to remove movement-impairing effects.
- Improved checks on pathing for Intervene and Safeguard to address situations where Warriors may wind up under the terrain.
- Catch and Carry: Druids can no longer attempt to catch Sacks of Grain while in flight form.
- Lost Treasure: Resolved an issue where players may be unable to open Cache of the Legion.
Raids, Dungeons, and Scenarios
- Cross-Realm raid browser now has new categories for Mists of Pandaria World
Bosses (Celestials and Ordos) and Flexible raid difficulty for Siege of
- The cross-realm raid browser is accessed through the 'Social Pane' (bound to the O key by default) and look for the 'Raid' tab on the bottom right.
- From there you can set the character as looking to join a raid or browse players that are forming up for a raid.
- For more information on this change, please see the thread titled Cross-Realm Raid Browser on the PTR Discussion forum.
- Players are now able to place raid markers in the world even while dead.
- Siege of Orgrimmar
- Resolved a situation where Quarantine Measures may sometimes fail to destroy all life within the Quarantine Zone.
- Resolved a situation that may cause demolition NPCs to stop opening the door to one of the towers.
- Paragons of the Klaxxi
- Resolved an issue where players may fail to gain Hisek the Swarmkeeper's special ability if they were in the middle of casting a spell while interacting with his corpse.
- Players are now able to mail account-bound items to other characters that
reside on a different realm on the same account. To send cross-realm mail: enter
the character's name, followed by a hyphen "-", followed by the realm name. Note
that cross-realm mail can only send account-bound items, not other items or
- Additional information and testing discussion for this cross-realm mail can be found in this thread on the PTR Discussion forum.
- Crashin' Thrashin' Flyers should now be able to damage each other while in a sanctuary area.
- MiniZeps should now be able to damage each other while in a sanctuary area.
- The Customer Support button has moved. Customer support can now be reached in-game by selecting Help option through the Game Menu (Game Menu is bound to the Escape key by default).
- Resolved an issue that caused players to not receive credit towards the Drop It! and Drop It Now! achievements.