5.3 PTR: Valley of Spirits Shut Down, Pet Battle Accuracy Changes
Today's newspost covers two very different types of battles on the PTR--Battlefield: Barrens and pet battle changes. Since our
post last week on the Horde Rebellion
, we've found a few more signs of strife in the area and it's now been included in the
official 5.3 PTR Patch Notes
. Most notably, the Valley of Spirits has been shut down in 5.3 under Kor'kron surveillance.
And if you prefer lighter combat, pet battles are getting some accuracy changes in 5.3 to keep combat from feeling repetitive.
Valley of Spirits Shut Down
The first time we previewed Orgrimmar on the PTR, Kor'kron guards were keeping the troll section of Orgrimmar on lockdown. But things have gotten even worse--they've terrified the NPCs to the point where the Valley of Spirits has been shut down. Players cannot access the Auction House, Banks, class trainers, profession trainers, and all vendors. (Suddenly, those pet snakes from
may be rare...)
In addition, the portal to Blasted Lands has been removed, and
s now run through the streets shouting "Vol'jin lives! Rise up against Garrosh Hellscream! Today is de new dawn of de Horde!" before being killed by Kor'kron Overseers.
Here's what the Valley of Spirits NPCs have to say to you:
Class Trainer: Ya need trainin'? You picked a real inconvenient time to come pokin' through the Valley of Spirits.
<Your trainer's voice lowers to a whisper>
The Kor'kron watches our every move. Garrosh has the Valley of Spirits under his thumb. I could be killed if they saw me talkin' to you.
Lucky for you, they don't ever see me. Lean in close, <name>. We gotta keep this on the down low.
: My snakes, mon. They took my snakes!
: No auctions today. No auctions for a while, by the look o'things.
: Not now. The bank's been taken over for the time being.
The Kor'kron leader said that they won't be makin' any "unauthorized withdrawls", but...you might wanna check an' make sure.
: <Xon'cha> looks nervously over his shoulder.> You'll have to go elsewhere if you want to get at your pets, rogue. The Kor'kron be watchin'.
: There be no fishin' today. Kor'kron orders.
: Trainin' services are on temporary hiatus. You wanna learn how to cook? You'll have to look somewhere else.
: The portals are shut down. I hear the orcs still have a portal to the Blasted Lands open, down in the Cleft o' Shadow.
: Sorry, rogue. De ink's run dry 'round here.
Pet Battle Accuracy Changes in Patch 5.3
If you've thought that pet battles were getting a little repetitive, accuracy changes in Patch 5.3 should help. Fewer abilities in Patch 5.3 will have a 100% hit chance, and those that have a lower chance to hit will now hit harder--so using that ability will feel like a bit of a gamble. In addition, the base chance to dodge has been removed and the chance to miss high-level opponents will be reduced from 5% per level to 2% per level.
We wanted to take a moment to discuss some of the broad accuracy changes we’re making to Pet Battles in patch 5.3. The overarching goal behind these changes is to provide transparency to reduce the amount of uncontrolled randomness, where one miss often makes or breaks a match. Once patch 5.3 is live, you’ll see “hit chance” listed for all abilities, and this value will update if the pet is affected by abilities that increase or reduce the chance to hit.
In addition, we’ve removed the base 5% chance to dodge, and reduced the chance to miss opponents of higher levels from 5% per level to 2% per level. The end result should be that your attacks that should hit, will hit, and there’s greater incentive to get out there and fight higher-level pets for greater experience rewards.
In a turn-based game, randomness can be a lot of fun if handled correctly. Without a little randomness, the outcome of a match could be predicted to a high degree of certainty before the first swing, and that’s no fun. Randomness often works best when it is opt-in, often in exchange for greater attack power, longer duration, etc. In fact, many higher-damage battle pet abilities already had a reduced chance to hit, which will now be visible.
With the removal of the base dodge chance, we were left with a large number of abilities that now had a 100% hit chance. We’ve made a handful of minor modifications to some of these abilities, giving them greater damage in exchange for a reduced chance to hit. It’s worth noting that every battle pet type (e.g. Dragonkin) have at least one ability that hits 100% of the time, allowing you to opt-out of the randomness if you prefer a less risky strategy. (Check out the full list of basic abilities that have gained additional damage in exchange for reduced accuracy below.)
Finally, we’ve left the base 5% chance to gain a critical strike (for 1.5x damage), and +/- 10% damage variance on all abilities, at least for the time being. We believe that getting a crit generally feels good, and the damage variance is often enough to make a match a bit less predetermined without swinging the match heavily in one player’s favor.
We also wanted to thank the community for the great feedback we’ve gotten so far about Pet Battles. Keep it coming!
As noted earlier, the following basic attacks have had their damage increased by 5-15% and accuracy reduced by 5-15%:
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