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The QueueJul 26, 2017 12:00 pm CT

The Queue: A score to settle

Goblins or Gnomes? The ultimate showdown… coming to a Queue near you… right now!

Okay. I admit I don’t exactly have a score to settle and it’s not exactly a showdown. Mostly I just think Gnomes are pretty great, and I hope you do too.


Mythriak asked:

Q4tQ, since tomorrow is Liz day:
– Do you think (a very cute) Gnomish engineer will be able to reverse engineer legion tech and ships for Alliance use in a bid for supremacy over the Horde?

And Cypher asked:

Do you think a (puny) Goblin “engineering” will be able to reverse engineer legion tech and ships for Horde use in a bid for supremacy over the Alliance?

Now, despite my Gnomish pride, I have to admit that both Goblins and Gnomes are very capable engineers. Goblins are a little more likely to blow themselves up and Gnomes are a little more likely to accidentally strand themselves in a parallel dimension, but we all have our failings. Either would be capable of reverse-engineering Legion tech if given the time… but there are a lot of demands on everyone’s time right now. The Legion isn’t waiting around while we disassemble its tech.

As to the supremacy over the Alliance/Horde business, I’m afraid I’m firmly in the can’t we all just get along? camp. We have more important things to do than fight, and aren’t we all just brothers and sisters in engineering, anyway? Our mutual love for the work should bring us together, not tear us apart! Just imagine what Goblins and Gnomes could accomplish, working side by side. We could make some truly spectacular explosions, for one, and wouldn’t that be fun?!

I mean, ahem, useful towards stopping the Legion, of course. So come on, my Gnome and Goblin brethren, let’s get to work and blow the Legion out of the sky with their own weapons. Less bickering, more engineering.

P.s. Gnomes definitely win on cuteness. Sorry, Goblins.

P. p. s. We do need a Tinker class, though I have no opinion on who should found it.


PTR Technical Query for Elemental shamans – please note, that there’s nothing lore spoilery in the following post, just technical spell buffs/debuffs.

From this post: http://blizzardwatch.com/2017/07/25/elemental-shaman-changes-7-3/

Speaking as a not so great elemental player, isn’t chain lightning and earthquake in different categories anyway? As stated, CL is a builder, and Earthquake is a finisher. Why would they cancel each other out exactly? Wouldn’t the challenger to Earthquake be Earth Shock, another “finisher”?

Liz: When I saw this question, I did what I do whenever I have a Shaman question: I flailed my arms at Joe until he answered it.

Joe: It’s not competition so much as damage output. A lot of it has to do with Lightning Rod, which procs off Chain Lightning. Targets that get it take 40% of all of the damage dealt by Chain Lightning.

And Chain Lightning is smart; no targeting required. Earthquake requires you to place it down and HOPE that things stand in it. And the talents / buffs generally aren’t there for Earthquake the way they are for CL. Even most of the artifact traits feed into LB and CL, making it more attractive.

Back in Warlords, if the fight had more than 4 targets you used Earthquake. Four or less, you used Chain Lightning. In Legion you never use EQ because cleave targets seldom stand still. So they’re trying to fix Earthquake, but I think it’s just plain too late.

Blizzard would have to severely nerf CL damage and then encounters would have to have enough “you sit here and the mobs sit here and never move” to make using Earthquake really worthwhile. Or they would have to buff EQ enough that if it hits one or two targets it does comparable damage to CL (plus Lightning Rod) on three or four.

At a cursory glance, that 12% nerf won’t likely be enough. I won’t be surprised if it hits 20%, and then MAYBE we’ll get into the target / encounter usefulness debate again

Anne: Really the only way earthquake could be made viable immediately is if you cast it on a mob instead of the floor. Like it was generated from one of the little angry dudes, and followed said angry dude.

Joe: Or make it moveable, like it was originally as a totem.

Anne: Really long story short, CL vs. EQ is aoe vs aoe, and Earthquake is dumb, the end.

Liz: That does seem to sum it up.


Q4TQ: Blizzard has to intervene with the world boss rotation, right? This is getting ridiculous.

I’m relatively convinced that you solved this problem purely by asking about it, because later that day @WarcraftDevs confirmed that the rotation wouldn’t be random starting in patch 7.3. While that’s still a ways off, it does mean we’re finally going to escape the random rotation that’s just a little too random.

Could you ask for something really good next? Like a cake and ice cream party for all of us?


Q4tQ: Some discussions I’m seeing about Mythic Kil’J have me turning over the following question in my head: Are Blizzard obligated to have their “mythic plus holycrap” level difficulty content be reasonably defeatable within a timeframe of “people will stop their lives for this?”

Let me clear, I think I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve been in a “par” raid above LFR difficulty with fingers left over, I am by no means an expert, or “in the culture,” but I do have a long history in Final Fantasy gaming where there was always the “end of story” boss and the “end of life” boss, a boss so ridiculously above the difficulty of the story as to be seen not only as totally optional, but really only there for those that wanted to make a longtime hobby out the game like until the next one came out. A longtime hobby, not something you put your job/life on hold for and forecast to have done in a week or two tops.

I see mythic raids as the latter of these two kinds of bosses, something to get an inch at a time over months, when the best of the best have a night to set aside, just like other guilds set aside a night for a full clear of the new normal mode. I see these as encoutners that WoW maybe has run a simulation of, but aren’t obligated to have had actual human being defeat. Maybe they know it’s “mathematically possible,” but I don’t see them as being on the hook to have them “reasaonably” possible… one might think that if you want a guaranteed clear, that’s what normal or perhaps heroic are for, so long as no extra story are gated there.

Ion himself essentially said that longterm existence of mythic raiding guilds and initiatives isn’t intended, people can’t and shouldn’t be held to constantly play at that level as a primary definition of their WoW existence… so, like… I kinda saw that as him saying “do this at your own risk,” you know? Does that disclaim them from having these encounters as being “reasonably” difficult and defeatable? I kinda think so, myself.

The high difficulty levels, as they stand now, seem to exist for the thrill of the chase — and that’s especially true for world first kills. It’s not a game for the average player, but it’s a challenge that some guilds exist for. Take Method, which recently snagged world first Mythic Kil’jaeden after 654 wipes.

These are real beat your head against the wall kind of encounters — and they aren’t the sort of thing you’d put yourself through if you didn’t love the challenge of it. But that challenge isn’t for everyone.

And so I think you’re right. While Blizzard creates some punishingly difficult encounters, it also offers easier difficulties for people who aren’t quite that keen. And even the hardest encounters get toned down. The dust has hardly settled on the world first chase, but Blizzard is already nerfing Tomb of Sargeras encounters. That means players who enjoy challenging content but aren’t quite on that bleeding edge have a decent shot at completing that content, too. Mythic modes may be impossible at first… but the difficulty is likely to keep getting dialed down as we get later in the expansion. So Mythic bosses are both that impossible “end of life” boss but eventually they’ll be the defeatable “end of story” boss. (Though they’ll probably never be easily defeatable.)

The end result is that there’s something for everyone. The world firsters have a super tough fight to the finish line. More casual players can see everything through LFR. And Normal and Heroic modes offer a middle ground for everyone else.

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