Archive for the ‘PTR’ Category

PTR Patch Available

The new PTR patch is on the download now. I just wish I could tell you what was in it! The PTR downloader is showing everyone the beta patch notes which aren’t the same as the PTR patch notes.  I’ll try and get the real PTR notes for you when I can.

New PTR Patch En Route

According to Zarhym, it looks like there will be a huge new patch on the PTR in the near future. What will it contain? No one knows just yet.

[bluepost]We plan to apply a new build to the 4.0.1 public test realms soon. In order to accomplish our development goals while pushing this next patch, testers will be required to re-patch and re-download all of the PTR client data. This should happen automatically and you can verify this by checking the Launcher when it begins downloading new data. The progress bar should be empty and in the red (Setup) section. (source) [/bluepost]

Paladin DPS on PTR 4.0.1

I finally got a DPS meter onto the PTR to check Gav’s damage dealing capabilities, and the results were surprising. I had the exact same gear on both Gavs, and both had their main damage seals up (Seal of Command on live, Seal of Righteousness on the PTR) and Blessing of Kings on.  One difference is that on live BoK gives 10% stat boosts, but on PTR it’s 8%. Slight difference. The testing procedure was simply rampaging around the Cult of the Damned camp above the Argent Tournament grounds. Here’s what I found out.

It seems that the downtime on PTR spent waiting for holy power to gather so you can cast Templar’s Verdict or Divine Storm does hurt your DPS. You need to wait for Crusader’s Strike’s cooldown to end twice before you can get to your bread-and-butter attacks. Sure, you judge as well (which is helpful for ret pallys to close gaps), and ret pallys can occasionally mix in an exorcism but it still takes a while to gather full holy power, all the while the mob is pounding on you. You also need to judge when to use said holy power to heal. It’s an interesting dynamic, but it does hurt your DPS – but by how much?

Personally, in the above scenario, it hurt me to the tune of 8%. Eight percent less damage per second on the PTR. That hurts allot. I don’t know if other classes are suffering the same fate, but if they aren’t paladins are going to fall by the wayside as viable DPS.

I do want to point out that Blessing of Kings was buffing my strength and agility by 2% less the usual, so that accounts for some of it. Also, Seal of Righteousness just feels weaker then Seal of Command to me. It may just be me, but I’m worried. Despite any excuses, paladin DPS is down, and I don’t see an immediate cure.

Glyph Management on 4.0.1 PTR


Today I decided to test the new glyph mechanic on the PTR. First up Gav bought a new glyph (Templar’s Verdict) and some Vanishing Powder for erasing old glyphs. I opened the glyph screen as seen above.


Step one was erasing an old glyph. I no longer needed the Glyph of Consecration now that the changes to it’s cost have made it prohibitive for me to cast. So, I  shift-right clicked on the glyph.


Do I wish to erase it? Yes, yes I do. Of course, I can reapply it at any time in the future because it stays in my glyph spell book. Handy!


And there we go. A blank major glyph slot to put my Templar’s Verdict glyph into.

The system, as it stands, isn’t quite working. For example; I have the Glyph of Judgement as a major glyph from live, but here it’s  a prime glyph. I was able to leave my judgment glyph in it’s major slot and place a new one in a prime slot, effectively doubling it’s potency. This will obviously be fixed before the patch goes live, so I’m not too worried. This will make glyph management much easier in the future but I fear for those whose lively hood is based around glyph sales. Without the need to repurchase glyphs their sales will drop. Not that big a deal, I guess, but it’s something that’s I’ve thought about (mostly because of the money I – as a buyer – am  going to save in the deal). This seems to be a change for the better. Good going, Blizz!

Druids Hate Me


This was supposed to be a post where I discussed the changes to druids in patch 4.0.1. I was supposed to discuss the changes to balance and the addition of the new solar/lunar power bar. I was going to talk about how I liked the change of bear form to cat at level 10. But it’s not going to be. Old grudges have resurfaced, and old wounds reopened. I’m going to vent instead.

I hate druids. I always have. Now, I even hate my own druid, Wrain. Wrain is my level 16 night elf balance druid who I popped onto the PTR to test low-level druidic play. I specced him balance and came to enjoy the spell that came with it, Starsurge. I didn’t really understand the solar/lunar power bar, and I still don’t. It’s not explained to a low-level druid what the changes do, so I kinda ignored it. I also played with cat form, and found it to be a better aid at my level then bear form.

Here’s where it all went to hell. After an hour or so rampaging through Darkshore I wanted to hearthstone home. But what’s this? No hearthstone?! WTF?? I checked everything in my little bags, and no hearthstone. Now that doesn’t make sense. Oh well, I thought; I’ll teleport to Moonglade and fly home. I was grumpy to find that the druid flight point wasn’t working (or missing, one of the two – I’m not sure where it’s supposed to be but there wasn’t one anywhere to be seen) so I had to hike it to the Alliance flight point just like Gav did back years ago. Once there I found that I didn’t have the money to fly home. Dammit! It’s just one thing after another!! Grumbling all the way back to town about having to run around for nothing, I played with my graphics settings, resetting my interface in the process. I don’t know whether it happened from that or during the loading screen, but I saw that my hearthstone had returned once I got to town and tried to sell things. What the hell?! Now thoroughly irritated, I hearthed back to Auberdine and logged off.

What is it with me and druids? Why do I always run into trouble with them and their stupid Moonglade?

I think druids hate me.

Budman Tries out Mage Changes on 4.0.1 PTR


I popped Budman onto the PTR today, and you can see the results above. Budman specced as a Frost mage upon arriving, earning a Water Elemental in the process. They no longer have a time limit to them, and seem to have monster range on their Water Bolt. I started having RandomPetName (my Water Elemental’s actual name, and no I didn’t name him) pull while I moved and stood some 30 yards from him.  That allowed me space to work when I would eventually pull the mob off of him. It was an odd mechanic, but it worked.

Arcane Missiles were a fun and dynamic mechanic whereupon I would get the above eye catch to let me know I could cast the spell. When it proc’d I could then work the spell into my rotation.

Two changes I wasn’t so fond of were the increased level requirement for summoning refreshments. Level 38?! I never carried food or drinks with Budman and I was out in the field when it occurred to me that I didn’t have my food conjuring spells, leaving me with nothing to easily return my health. The second thing I wasn’t as happy with, also pertaining to increased level requirements, were the teleport spells. I was unable to teleport back to town because the spells – as I found out – required level 24 (and Budman’s level 22).  Dammit.

So the Mage changes are looking good, for leveling frost mages at least. I  can’t say for end-game or fire or arcane mages, so I’ll leave that to the dedicated mage blogs – I don’t want to step on any squishy toes with my heavy plate-wearing paladin’s boots.

Dead Death Knight


‘Gleeve’,  actually my death knight Gleave from live, is  the most recent of my transfers to the PTR I trained him up in Unholy and Frost specs. I found that even against Howling Fjord baddies, the frost spec seemed weak. I died in no time flat which was a turn-off. When I switched to unholy, I was fine. Why? I ‘m not sure.It may have had something to do with my lack of dual-wielding weapons (frost’s specialty) but more importantly I was hardly getting any healing from Death Strike. Of course, that didn’t change from frost to unholy, so credit my ghoul as well. Dark Transformation was fun too, but hard to track for me. I had to select my ghoul to see how many stacks he had which was a pain.

The net result of my testing on the PTR is five good spec changes (ret and prot for pallys, demonology warlocks, beast master hunters and unholy death knights) and one not so good one (frost DKs). The testing continues!

PTR Servers Down?

All of the PTR servers went down completely at about 6:19 AM EDT. Good omen? Bad omen? Glitch? We’ll see. I’ll keep everyone posted.

(6:26 AM) Update: It appears that the character copy feature has been re-enabled. Copy while you can!

(6:29 AM) Servers back up. It appears that the down time was to fix the character copy feature. Problem solved!

Klug and Krayne hit the PTR


Here’s ‘Klug,’ Lug’s PTR alter-ego. I found that I love the new Focus mechanic over mana for Lug. I also picked him up a decent bow to replace his gun now that weapon skills are gone, meaning that I didn’t have to train Lug’s bow skill. Pig was in rare form and we killed random mobs even easier then we do on live, but Stridy was MIA. I had a button that said, ‘Call Stridy,’ but it didn’t work. Stridy’s button under the new ‘Summon Pet’ button didn’t work. I’ll have to submit a ticket on that.


Here’s ‘Krayne,’ Crane’s doppelganger.  He trained up as a demonology warlock and promptly got a Doomguard. Wow. Kirashak is powerful, and the new tricks (like the new soul stone/soul burn mechanic) were cool, but what amazed me was my ability to nearly ignore my mana bar.  Normally Crane has to watch his mana bar closely because I’m almost always short but here I just cast away with impunity.

To this point, I really like the patch’s changes, and I can’t find serious a fault so far.

PTR 4.0.1 is Active


For those not yet privy, the 4.0.1 PTR servers are up and active. This means that you can go try out the new Cataclysm powers, specs and interface (yay!) but not the new beta-centric world changes, races and zones (boo!). In short, it’s the WoW you’re playing now but with new powers and a modified interface. I popped Gavelier in (known on the PTR as ‘Gavalier’ due to a naming conflict) and trained his ret spec as I’d decided I would while toying with Wowhead’s talent calculator. Or, I tried. You see, this PTR makes use of the new streaming feature. That, combined with the 16 GB download time meant that I hopped in before everything was loaded (I ought to be done downloading sometime in October, by the way). This meant that I didn’t actually have all the data I should have and the game glitched. Restart.

Back in, I got my spec set and was ready to test my powers on some hapless mobs in Storm Peaks when I realized I was missing some of my key new abilities. Stuff like my new main damage seal for one (that’s kinda important) and the new Word of Glory heal. Off to Dalaran, and then to Stormwind. Once in Dal I stood for about three minutes waiting for the portal to show up. Once it did I popped through and hopped on my Albino Drake atop the Mage’s Tower… and promptly fell about forty feet straight down. Ok, so no flying in the old world yet (yes, I know there’s a new ability that needs trained, but it wasn’t at the Dalaran flight trainer). It’s actually funny to see folks running around on their flying mounts, hopping up and down with them, vainly trying to get airborne. Anyway I got my new abilities and ‘ported back to the Argent Tournament grounds. Or I tried to. The game froze and I was back at the character select screen. I reselected Gav and sat at the finished loading screen for a few minutes before giving up. Restart.

I finally loaded up at the Tournament grounds and took a few dailies to practice my pummeling on the Cult of the Damned dudes. My first thought was that the game does an awesome job letting you know when a proc’d ability is available. For example, with Art of War my exorcism spell glows so I know to hit it. Very nice. Also, the new holy power mechanic kept my eyes off the battle more then I would have liked, keeping an eye on my new bar so I could know when to hit Divine Storm, Word of Glory or Templar’s Verdict. In all though, I seemed to be doing more damage then before. Of course, without a DPS meter it’s hard to tell for sure.

I hearthed back to Dalaran and took the portal back to Stormwind. Here’s a few more random pics I took while  n Goldshire.


The new stat window is great at telling you what you need to know without you having to do on-the-fly math or looking things up online. It will tell if you’re hit-capped for your level (and levels above you) for example.


Here’s the talent spec window. Nothing fancy but very functional.

I’ll have more tidbits as I continue to play.

Alazar Archives