Hey folks! I’ve got a small update here to help quell some of the rumors and let you know where we are at for WoW Classic. We recently began a phase of internal employee alpha testing. The new build data that many of you have been discussing over the last few days is simply part of this process. Phases like this allow us to test out the game content along with other functionality that will be used in the live game, like logging in through the Blizzard Battle.net 175 App.
 ":"  -  Any time a step ends in a ":" instead of a "." means that the next step is part of the current step you are on.  This generally means the next step should be done while working on the current step.  This means every "start working on" or "continue working on" will end in a ":".  But this is used with other occasions as well, so keep this in mind.

PHASED CONTENT ROLLOUT – Following its launch, World of Warcraft Classic’s content will be released over the course of multiple phases reflecting the game’s original order. Re-experience WoW history unfolding as heroes gear up for Blackwing Lair; players battle for PvP Honor and Rank rewards; and entire realms band together to open the gates of Ahn’Qiraj.
The World of Warcraft is going back to its roots with WoW Classic. Giving players the chance to return to the game as it was around the time of its launch, WoW Classic is set to launch worldwide on August 27. However, ahead of its imminent release, the team at Blizzard are offering a closed beta test for WoW Classic, and we’ve got all the details players need to jump in on the action.
The first—and among the most important—decision we had to make was which version of the game to focus on. As many of you have noted, the classic period was two years long and full of changes. Core features like Battlegrounds were introduced in patches after WoW’s original launch, and class design similarly changed over time. After careful consideration, we decided on Patch 1.12: Drums of War as our foundation, because it represents the most complete version of the classic experience.
There’s the reason why some players used to call the game World of Roguecraft. Rogue was one of the most popular classes in classic WoW and there’s a good reason for it. During vanilla, Rogues topped DPS meters in raids and dungeons, but their main strength was world PvP. Rogues could stealth through enemies avoiding unwanted engagements with the opposing faction. Additionally, a huge variety of crowd control abilities and high burst damage made them the worst nightmare for the cloth-wearing classes. However, Rogues were in a bit of disadvantage regarding end-game gearing since most of their gear pieces were useful to other in-game classes as well.
In the past, if someone accidentally looted something they didn’t mean to in a group, players would have to contact customer support to trade it. In the modern system, players are given a period of time in which they can still exchange loot with others. This is a convenience we felt was worth retaining for Classic rather than making people go through customer support. (Sorry ninja looters!)
“To fill our pool of beta and stress test participants, we’ll be choosing dedicated players who meet select criteria from both the WoW Classic beta opt-in and the standard Warcraft beta opt-in. Participants will also need to have an active subscription or active game time on their Battle.net Account. While opting-in to the beta is the primary way to make sure you’re in the running to join the test it doesn’t guarantee an invitation to the closed beta test. We may also consider additional factors such as how long a player has been subscribed to the game so that we have the right mix of players to ensure great feedback toward making WoW Classic the very best experience for the community.”
Additionally, Blizzard has said that there may be a couple of other factors determining who they allow in the WoW Classic beta sign up. For example, a player who has been subscribed to the game for a long time will likely have an advantage over a new subscriber. While the reasoning behind this may seem unfair, it is so that the team can get valuable feedback from longtime fans of the franchise.
You can opt in for the beta at the official site. When the beta launches on May 15, players who’ve gotten in will be able to play all the way from from level one to 30. WoW game director Ion Hazzikostas tells us that the beta will be “uncharacteristically small compared to our expansions,” in part to ensure that the focus is on the proper launch this August.
The fact that Cookie's Tenderizer from the Deadmines had +3 instead of +2 strength. The fact that the Stormwind south bank had one instead of two mailboxes. The fact that Jaina's Proudmore's name was "Jaina Proudmore" instead of "Jaina Proudless." Stuff like this isn't what mattered. It was arbitrary. If Cookie had dropped a shield instead of a mace and Jaina had been named Susan, nobody would have cared. It wasn't specific details like these that caused us to enjoy the game.
Occasionally it's also been proposed to re-randomize all the gear. We didn't have best in slot lists back then. People weren't starting out as a fresh level 1 character with a complete list of which dungeons to run at 60 in order to gear as quickly and efficiently as possible. Now, all that data is available. If gear were re-randomized then all of those lists would become useless and thing would be close to how they were. Which is a more important part of the "vanilla experience?" the fact that item X from boss Y has exactly Z stats on it, or the voyage of discovery? Personally I think that voyage is way more important. Do you remember how many points of which stat on the ring or whatever that Darkmaster Gandling drops? I don't. Would it kill your experience if the BiS for every class were in a different dungeon so people had to actually play to figure it out rather than simply consult a spreadsheet? I don't think it would. For that matter, it probably wouldn't be a bad idea to handle it intelligently so that the better gear is in later dungeons. I remember there because some weird cases where level 40ish gear was better than anything that dropped in level 60 dungeons.
As it had been executed in Vanilla, Can Blizz launch the PvP rank system? As somebody who was wow classic gold around back then, and without needing to get overly hand-wringy, I feel that the position system itself supported some fairly unhealthy behaviors. That top rank took months of continuous grinding, and I mean constant, 10 to 12 hours each day, to the stage where people weren’t even functioning properly and everything out of that honor grind was excluded. There were things in WoW Classic that you had to forfeit your wellbeing and life outside of WoW Classic to obtain.

Nov 15 C2C interview with Theloras aka ME Hey everyone, Earlier today I spent some time with the Man, the Myth, the Legend who is Countdown to Classic and we spent some time discussing what I and many other Paladins are most looking forward to in the upcoming WoW Classic demo that will be available during Blizzcon: https://www.twitch.tv/videos/325334774 Since it looks like just Elwynn Forest for the Alliance and Durotar for the Horde will be available to play/test during the upcoming demo/beta, only early level gameplay will be possible to test at any length. But even with that limitation, a major core mechanic for Paladins will be able to be tested and theory crafted. I am of course referring to JUDGEMENT STACKING which I outlined in the thread below along with several other mechanics/talents/items that are still lingering and unanswered questions: Proc Items + Spell Dmg + JotC stacking? https://us.battle.net/forums/en/wow/topic/20760205815#post-1 TLDR - I found actual Vanilla era evidence (posted in the thread above) which stated that all ranks of each individual Judgement stacked with one another - Judgement of Light (JoL), Judgement of Wisdom (JoW) and most critically in this case, Judgement of the Crusader (JotC): With pvp gloves, libram and 3/3 imp JotC = +829 holy damage JotC R1 +79 Holy Damage JotC R2 +90 Holy Damage JotC R3 +113 Holy Damage JotC R4 +148 Holy Damage JotC R5 +182 Holy Damage JotC R6 +217 Holy Damage Since rank 1 Seal/Judgement of the Crusader is learned at level 6 and rank 2 is learned at level 12, if Elwynn Forest ends up being the only zone open for testing, then reaching level 12 is definitely doable from quest turnins and XP from mob kills. Which will allow 2 Paladins to join as a group and coordinate each of them putting up rank 1 and rank 2 of Judgement of the Crusader accordingly. If this proves to be correct, then it would forever change the LOLRET Meta with the simple fact that the more Retribution Paladins you have in a group/raid, the more powerful each of them then become and would also allow other class/specs come to the forefront as well namely Discipline Priests spamming Smite. At any rate, the twitch interview link is above - we had some audio technical issues at the start so if you fast forward to the 5:00 mark - you can hear the full interview. PS as a bonus, later on in the interview the Crazy OOMkin named Keftenk makes a special guest appearance :) https://twitter.com/count2classicTheloras111 Nov 15


In the past, if someone accidentally looted something they didn’t mean to in a group, players would have to contact customer support to trade it. In the modern system, players are given a period of time in which they can still exchange loot with others. This is a convenience we felt was worth retaining for Classic rather than making people go through customer support. (Sorry ninja looters!)
One may think that the AH may suffer a reduction of competitivity, leading to higher prices, but in an healthy server the gold farmer's farm will be taken over by actual players. Giving the chance to a more fair gameplay where you can go out and farm the materials that you need, instead to see them always farmed by gold sellers that sell them to you, without letting you many room to make gold in a fair way.
For some weird reason Warlock used to be underrepresented in vanilla WoW. However, the least popular doesn’t mean that they were bad. Warlocks had amazing damage and some truly unique utility abilities allowing them to summon players or create Healthstones for the whole group. Similarly to Hunters, Warlocks were amazing for solo players with the ability to summon various demons to help them.
This is another one that will most likely be a boon rather than a bane to the player base, though time will tell just how 14years of experience will affect the economy of Classic WoW. There has been no concrete word on just how AddOns will work in Classic, but if the infrastructure of the game works the same as it does in retail, there is a good chance that most of the mods that work in retail will work in Classic. This means that quite a few people will be running around with a whole host of gathering, crafting, auctioning, and gold making mods. Now, those mods did exist back in Vanilla, but not in the same way they do now, and not as many people had them back then as will in Classic. This will drastically affect how effective the auction house will be, and hopefully will affect the economy as a whole in a positive way. Another thing that will most likely see a large increase in popularity is carry runs. These have steadily grown in popularity since Vanilla, and rest assured with the old 40 man raid size that there will be quite a few “Molten Core full carry master loot ON PST for prices GOLD ONLY” being spammed in trade chat. Whether tokens will be available in Classic has yet to be discussed, but if so it will have an enormous impact on the economy of Classic. This, in addition to the differences I will cover in the next section, will have a pretty large impact on the endgame of WoW Classic.
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 moder 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?
This is, in my opinion, the largest change that WoW Classic will have over Vanilla, and it’s something that simply can’t be undone. Back in Vanilla, guilds were very secretive over strategies of how to correctly defeat a boss. Videos of boss kills were virtually non-existent,and strategies on how to itemize and play various classes and specs were hard to come by, especially for newer players. This, in addition to the unforgiving raid requirements and difficult content, lead to a lot of the player base never really getting to see a lot of the endgame content. Those that did rarely ever did so efficiently, and it wasn’t uncommon for the best guild on any given server to take months to complete a raid tier. There is absolutely no way that this happens in Classic. The raids in Vanilla are very much a solved system by now. Every raid, and every boss and trash pack inside, has been thoroughly strategized and talked about to death over the last 14 years. Rest assured even if you and your friends never played Vanilla, someone in your raid party will know exactly what to do on every boss, exactly when the trash packs are going to respawn, and exactly what buffs and gear to get to prepare. That certainly doesn’t mean thatClassic raiding will be a cakewalk, but it will be different than how the majority of people stumbled through the content.
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