The Dungeons & Raid panel as BlizzCon 2010 was full of interesting and exciting information about the upcoming instances in World of Warcraft: Cataclysm. A lot of new information was revealed and a lot of things we already know were fleshed out a bit more with a heavy amount of explanation. ItÂs no joke that there is a lot to dungeons in WoW so letÂs go ahead and dig into the new and cool stuff.
Classic Dungeons & Heroics
As we know, the Deadmines and Shadowfang Keep will be redesigned and now have a heroic mode for level 85 players to go back and revisit the dungeon. There are going to be a lot of new quests for both the normal and heroic versions and most instance quests will be located within the dungeon itself. ThatÂs some pretty helpful things for dungeons where there are quests scattered across two continents causing you to almost never have every quest for the dungeon youÂre about to run.
Dungeons will now also be a lot shorter, less confusing, and more fun as Blizzard moves forward are redesigning instances. Most dungeons will be broken into wings, including older dungeons like Uldaman and Marudon. They will also be trimming out parts of older larger instances to make them shorter so youÂre not stuck getting lost and doing unfun things. Examples include taking the maze out of the Wailing Caverns and removing the bottom floor from the Sunken Temple.
Some dungeons will be cut into differnt wings.
It looks like Blizzard is now making a commitment to make lower level dungeons short, fun, and in bite size chunks so you can hop in, get the dungeon and the quests done, and move on with leveling. ThatÂs some pretty good changes compared to five years ago when doing Wailing Caverns was an all night event.
Graveyards will also be located right outside the instances now so that you wonÂt have a long run back to say the Deadmines.
TheyÂre planning on making sure more raid zones will be in ÂshipÂ (the shipped version of the game) so that there is more endgame content to do. Of course, as we know, raids will now be in small bite-sized chunks so you can complete a full raid in a night, get your rewards, and move on to the next raid on another day.
A big theme though was flexibility and accessibility. As we also know, 25 and 10 man raids will reward the same loot (although 25 man raids will award more justice points) so there is no downside to running either size depending on the amount of players your guild has. Hard mode difficulties will still exist including a new raid lockout system that will allow you to join any raid for any bosses that youÂve yet to kill. Although it seems heroic modes will still use the standard raid lockout system (once you do a boss on heroic, all future heroic attempts must be done with that raid groupÂs raid id vs. hoping in anyoneÂs raid to do a boss).
This is where the good stuff is. Patch 4.1.0 will include the Firelands raid where players will be able to do battle with Ragnaros himself. If youÂve played the beta then you know Ragnaros plays a huge part in the hyjal storyline so itÂll be good to get some closure as you march into the elemental plane and dispense some justice to this fiery beast.
Players will face off against Ragnaros in the center keep.
HeÂll be located in Sulferion Keep which includes a large outdoor area where various raid bosses are and an interior where youÂll do battle with Ragnaros himself. There will be a total of seven bosses and most of them will be located outside.
One other dungeon will make it into 4.1.0 which is the Abyssal Maw (and the promise that Blizzard will always try to include 5-man dungeons with each patch). ItÂll be a mix of platforms and various underwater segments. Nothing much more was said about it.
The Abyssal Maw will have different underwater and above water areas.
Every dungeon in the game will be getting 2d maps in Cataclysm but enhanced maps wonÂt make it until 4.1.0. The enhanced maps will include boss info, 3d models, lore, boss abilities, and loot so that youÂll have a lot more information about an encounter before you start it.
Question & Answer
There were not a lot of groundbreaking questions or answers. The biggest news was that there will be teleporters in older dungeons like Blackrock Depths where itÂs too complicated to break up but they still want to make sure you can run back to where you were without a huge walk.
Well thatÂs the Blizzcon 2010 Raid & Dungeon panel. Come to the Ten Ton Hammer forums to discuss your thoughts on this yearÂs raid panel.