PTR 3.1 Ulduar Exploration Video

On Thursday, US players attempted to test Hodir in the middle of crashes outside dungeons, and 3200 Queues to even login. In my case, half of our 10-man couldn’t zone in. And we couldn’t zone out. Since we couldn’t even get to start a single fight with Hodir, I decided to explore Ulduar. Not all of it, only the first floor.

The dungeon is simply awesome to behold with a lot of care to details in its interior architecture. It takes over 20 minutes to explore every corner of the place. As said earlier, Ulduar seems to be the prison of Yogg-Saron. That’s what I speculate based on visuals. The dome at the center of Ulduar is broken with pieces of crystal floating in a swirl of magic residual. Within the dome is a huge crater in the icy floor and a few broken chains hanging from the walls. What makes me think that Loken somehow broke the dome once he fell to the whispers of the old god. Hopefully we get to read some lore in the quests to confirm or debunk this.

Update: Confirmed. The big chamber with chains at the center of the dungeon is named: The Prison of Yogg-Saron.

In this video you will see the Ulduar tram. If you get to fall off the tram, just walk back to where the tram was and climb the stairs. There are ramps to get you back above. Watch the lengthy video. If you are on a slow connection, start the video and press pause to allow it to download while you browse other pages or websites. (20 minutes video)

View our 38 screenshots

Arthas Carries A Burden Deep In His Soul …

The Balnir Farmstead has a past mystery … a place that holds a dark secret that no one but Prince Arthas Menethil knows. A secret that would be dragged within for years. A secret that would forever damn his soul.

  • Read our preview of World of Warcraft: Arthas, Rise of the Lich King.
  • Watch our video interview with Chris Metzen & Micky Neilson about Arthas, Rise of the Lich King and WoW: Stormrage
  • Participate on the World of Warcraft: Arthas Galley Giveaway.

PTR 3.1 Ulduar Testing Schedule

Ok, we’re going to attempt to have some playtest sessions for Ulduar starting tonight and through this weekend.

The following is the tentative schedule for this weekend:

On the North American test realms

Hodir – Thursday night, February 26, starting at 7pm EST/4pm PST.

    To get to Hodir from the front of Ulduar, travel all the way through the exterior section headed straight until you teleport into the interior section. Go up the stairs, over the temporary bridge, then Hodir’s wing is to your right. The walls of his wing are ice covered and he’s at the end. Both 10 and 25 player modes are active. Post Hodir Feedback here.

Iron Council – Friday night, February 27, starting at 7pm EST/4pm PST

On the European test realms

Thorim – Friday night, February 27, starting at 7pm CET.
Freya – Friday night, February 28, starting at 7pm CET.

This schedule could change at a moment’s notice due to server, bug, or patch status. I’ll try to keep everyone informed as much as possible. Ulduar and the bosses to be tested will remain also open a variable length of time. How long they stay open depends upon a host of factors including designer availability, bug status, etc.

We also hope to have the zone open on Sunday for each respective realm for a longer period of time. We have a couple special versions of Patchwerk setup. One of them is called Patchwerk (DPS Test) and is essentially a massive training dummy for your raids. The other is Patchwerk (Tank Test), and he does not have a Hateful Strike, but his melee damage increases over time.

We’re very interested in seeing combat logs and parses for all raid testing on the PTR.

Quick Ulduar FAQ:

Q) Will there be testing available on Oceanic, Korean, or other time zones?
A) There will be some testing available. We do plan on allowing for extended testing on Flame Leviathan, and possibly other bosses. We want encounter designers to be present during testing, which makes testing during some time zones difficult.

Q) Where’s all the trash?
A) We don’t have everything turned on for these tests, and this sometimes includes trash creatures before each boss encounter.

Q) Where’s the loot?
A) We don’t have this attached to bosses yet, but we’ll have loot hooked up soon.

Q) What about achievements?
A) These aren’t implemented yet.

Plague Proto-Drake and Black Proto-Drake Rewards Removal

Players who wish to get the Plagued Proto-Drake or the Black Proto-Drake rewards from the Glory of the Raider or Heroic: Glory of the Raider Achievements—you have a last chance to completing these achievements.

Rally your guildmates or get a very efficient PUG from known guilds to work together exclusively to get this done. Otherwise, you won’t see these rewards anymore. Ghostcrawler just announced these rewards will be removed from the game once Patch 3.1 goes live.

Blizzard Quote:
Ghostcrawler: Upcoming Glory of the Raider Reward Changes When 3.1 goes live, the rewards for

PTR 3.1 Equipment Manager Interface

The Gear Management System is the most awesome feature in the game besides the Dual Talent Spec.  Very simple and user-friendly. Once you set up your gear choices you can change gear with a single click. However, you need to switch gear manually. It won’t automatically change when you switch specs. Not a big deal.

The first thing you should do is to press (ESCAPE) to open the menu window.  Go to Interface, select Controls and look at the bottom to click the following checkbox: “Use Equipment Manager—Enables access to the Equipment Manager interface from the character frame.”

Close the Menu. Now press (C) to open the Character window.  At the top-right, above the glove slot you will now see a new icon that recembles a chestplate. When you click the chestplate icon, the Equipment Manager window pops up to the top-right of the Character window.

It contains 10 slots. Don’t attempt to drag items in there. That’s not its function. Instead, make sure you have all the gear worn you wish for your primary talent spec.  All you need to do is to click the red save button within the Equipment Manager window. You will get familiar from there forward—it looks exactly like the Macro window buttons.  After pressing the save button, you will see a textbox to type the title of your macro.  In my case, I named it Holy Spec.

Then you select any of the macro buttons.  Press ok. Voila.  That button will automatically choose all the gear you had at the moment you saved.  Now make sure to pick all the gear you want to use for your second spec.  Once you have all the gear, trinkets, rings, cloak, weapons and neck that you would use for your secondary talent spec—click the breastplate icon at the top-right to open the Equipment Manager. Now repeat the process by pressing the save button. All the new gear you have is automatically saved.  A new textbox shows up. Name it whatever secondary talent spec you chose. In my case, I named it Retribution. I selected a button for it.

Now you have two out of ten Equipment sets.  Play around by pressing the first button. I automatically wore all the gear I saved for my Holy spec.  A sound is played to alert you of the gear change. Press the second button, and all your gear changes to the second spec. In my case, all the retribution gear.  The video is only a test to show you the mechanics of how it works. I don’t have a retribution set, besides the Scourge Invasion set. Hope you like this new feature the developers have no doubt worked on and polished for a long time.. Watch the video below.

PTR 3.1 New LFG Tool Features

A very nice touch for those who complained about the LFG tool. This time the Blizzard developers have added new criterias to ease up the search of groups. The new option checkboxes ask you to specify if you are a:

  • Healer
  • DPS
  • Tank
  • Leader

Pretty options if you ask me. Let’s see how it evolves during the testing process. All fans are welcome to use the LFG feature instead of channels. This will help test and debug before it reaches the live realms.

Unless I have been living under a rock the past few patches, I noticed something I had not seen before, and which the developers had mentioned at some point they would add to the game. You can now access the battlegrounds from anywhere by pressing (H) key. That will open up the PvP window. Press the Battlegrounds tab. You will see the same window you usually do when talking to a Battlemaster. From there you can select Alterac Valley, Warsong Gulch, Arathi Basin, Eye of the Storm, and Strand of the Ancients.

 

PTR 3.1 LFG Tool New Feature

A very nice touch for those who complained about the LFG tool. This time the Blizzard developers have added new criterias to ease up the search of groups. The new option checkboxes ask you to specify if you are a:

  • Healer
  • DPS
  • Tank
  • Leader

Pretty options if you ask me. Let’s see how it evolves during the testing process. All fans are welcome to use the LFG feature instead of channels. This will help test and debug before it reaches the live realms.

 

PTR 3.1 Dual Talent Spec Feature

For those who haven’t had access to the PTR 3.1, we got screenshots and video of the Dual Talent Spec Feature. In order to benefit from this feature, you must go to a class trainer.  The trainer now has a new option below the unlearn talents option.  Select the Dual-spec option. You will be prompted to pay 1000 gold to learn this new feature.

   

Once done, you will automatically gain a new achievement. Open your Talent Tree window by pressing (N).  Nothing changes within the Talent Tree Window, except now you see a second button tab on the top-right of the window. The first button is your primary talent spec. The button below is your secondary talent spec.  Each has its own set of three talent trees and a glyph window.  Each glyph window is associated with any of the specs. So you can have two sets of glyphs.

   

 

Assign points to your talent trees for your primary spec.  Press the second button at the top-right to access the secondary spec window. You need to activate it before you can assign points.  Press the large red button at the top titled: “Activate these talents”. You will see a spellbar casting “Activate Secondary Spec”. Your mana pool will be completely depleted. Now you can set talent points to any of your secondary spec’s three talent trees.

Watch the video below to see all these steps and how it works.

PTR 3.1 Patch Notes

I just logged in into Broxigar PvE server to bring you coverage, screenshots and video of PTR 3.1—so stay tuned for any updates. In the meantime, below are the full patch notes. Remember, Blizzard hasn’t added all the Class changes to this patch. It will be added in upcoming PTR patches.

The latest test realm patch notes can always be found at
http://www.worldofwarcraft.com/patchnotes/test-realm-patchnotes.html

The latest patch notes can always be found at
http://www.worldofwarcraft.com/patchnotes/

General

  • All Ground Mounts may now swim without dismounting the rider. Flying
      Mounts still may NOT, and will dismount the rider upon entering water.

  • Ulduar is now available for limited testing.  Please visit the Public
      Test Realms for more details.
      http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/board.html?forumId=11572

  • Players at maximum level will now be able to visit their trainer to
      pay a one-time fee and access the dual talent spec feature.

  • A new Gear Manager feature has been added.  Players will now be able
      to save gear sets for easy gear switching.

PvP

  • Battlegrounds
      Players will now be able to queue for battlegrounds from any
      location.
      Seaforium Barrels can be looted while mounted, can now be seen from
      anywhere in the zone, and can now be found at the Central Graveyard.
      Teleporters can now be used while mounted and can now be seen from
      anywhere in the zone

Read the Class Changes below …

Classes: General

  • Hysteria, Tricks of the Trade, Enrage, Wrecking Crew, Death Wish,
      Arcane Power, Owlkin Frenzy, Beast Within, Avenging Wrath and
      Hysteria damage bonuses no longer stack together.

Death Knights

PTR 3.1 Installer Available

Around 3am EST, waves of fans started downloading the PTR 3.1 You can download it at the following link once you have logged in to your WoW Account. First, you needed to download the old PTR designated:

WoW-3.0.1.8874-PTR-US-Installer-downloader (old PTR installer)

Once you installed it, you would be prompted to download an updated Launcher. That’s when you actually download the PTR 3.1 which takes an approximate download time of 30 minutes on DSL/Cable.