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Patch 3.0.2 is out; a patch that will let us transition from The Burning Crusade to Wrath of the Lich King. A lot of changes have gone into effect, from achievements, to how mounts work, spells, new talents, and let's not forget one of the most important aspects: PvP.
PvP has evolved a lot in this latest patch, and we'll cover every single change that's happened now that the patch is live.
Orgrimmar's Arena Map, as shown in the WWI
It won't be uncommon to hear the cries for nerfs when the new Battlegrounds and Arenas come in - the Talent changes, along with the spell changes, are gigantic. Paladins with the Retribution spec will be dealing a LOT of damage and possibly dominating some matches they couldn't before, and your favorite class may not be performing as favorably as the others.
The main reason this is all happening is the fact that this is all balanced for level 80, and has been stated repeatedly by Blue posters all of today while people came to mention how 'broken' the new PvP encounters have been behaving.
While it's not much consolation to hear everything is "working as intended" for now, do remember that there's only a 1-month timeframe left before Wrath of the Lich King launches. At which point we will be able to level up, and get everyone back on equal grounds. Many classes won't shine until they get their new expansion abilities, so it's suggested to take a waiting attitude if you can't stand the current changes.
New 20,000 Honor items appeared
New PvP Epic Rewards
You may have noticed that there are new items available for those who have been saving up their honor points. These items are some great options for those who have been on the fence of buying upgrades so they can level better, and come in the form of Trinkets and Capes for different Melee and Spellcasters.
Ontop of that, all gems that could be purchased via Honor Points in the Hall of Legends / Hall of Heroes are now Bind on Equip, meaning that you can trade, sell, and mail these around, even put them up at the Auction House if you're so inclined to make a few extra gold pieces before the expansion hits. It's worth noting that these are no longer Unique-Equipped, either.
Remember, your Honor Points will NOT be reset once Wrath of the Lich King goes live, so you could still keep on saving them in hopes of securing level 80 PvP items faster.
Two new arenas are now available - Orgrimmar Arena and Dalaran Arena.
Orgrimmar Arena - Features a stadium-like arena where you will be using elevators to gain height distance between you and the opposing team. Not only that, fire will come out from the sides and damage you should you get too close to it! New mechanics such as controlling height and watching your position are introduced here.
Find out more about the Orgrimmar Arena by visiting our Orgrimmar Arena WWI Preview!
Dalaran's Arena Map, as seen in the WWI
Dalaran Arena - Features the Dalaran Sewers, you will be pushed into the battleground through some pipes and get right into the battle without being able to stay at the ready area, so you better have a good plan fast. In addition, a pillar of water will come from the center of the platform periodically and knockback anyone near it, or anyone who touches it.
Find out more about the Dalaran Arena by visiting our Dalaran Arena WWI Preview!
End of Season 4
Nethaera announced that Season 4 will also be ending with Patch 3.0.2, allowing them to compute the season's winners for the last titles and Netherdrake mounts.
WeÂre currently planning to end the fourth Arena season on October 14, 2008, and as always -- this date could easily change. This Arena Season is only ending in respect to the ladder, meaning we'll be taking a snapshot of the season's ladder and then go through our normal process to determine who is eligible for the end-of-season rewards. This process should take approximately one week. It's very important for players who feel that they may be eligible for the arena-specific title and/or Armored Nether Drake to refrain from transferring their character to another realm between the date outlined above, and when the end-of-season rewards are physically awarded. Upon the end of this Arena Season, teams and ratings will not be wiped, and will carry forward allowing players to earn points each week and purchase gear until the launch of the expansion (November 13, 2008).
There you have it - these are all the changes happening in the PvP environment for this patch, with more on the way with Wrath of the Lich King's release. Make sure to check back for the latest news and changes at TenTonHammer!