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WoW Patch 5.0.4 Overview

Updated Mon, Aug 27, 2012 by Messiah

The newest huge pre-expansion patch is coming to World of Warcraft.  Patch 5.0.4 should be live on the servers sometime Tuesday morning August 28th, 2012.  This is the Mists of Pandaria pre-patch and as with any other pre-expansion patch there will be a massive number of changes introduced in it. 

What are the biggest and most important changes coming to the game though and how will they affect you?  That’s what we are going to look at in this article as there are just way to many changes to look at all of them in-depth.

You may also want to check out 5 Important MoP Changes, and some of these are in this patch ahead of the release of MoP.


Mana Changes

The amount of mana that casters have available to them will now be capped. The amount varies by class and spec as well as by level. For more information check out the article on Understanding Mana Pools and Mana Efficiency in Mists of Pandaria and the section on mana in 5 Important MoP Changes.

Talent Changes

warrior talent tree
An example of a warriors talent tree with the new system in place.

The talent system is being completely redone for Mists of Pandaria, and this patch releases that system to the players.  Gone are the talent points you earned every few levels and multiple point talents in a tree system.  Now in place is a system that grants you 1 new ability from a choice of 3 every 15 levels.

This is a huge topic though so tune in this week for more information on it, in an article focused on just the new talent system. 

If you can’t wait for that, check out this look at the system from when it was first announced: WoW Talent System Overhaul - Mists of Pandaria and Talent System 2.0.

Update: Check out our guide to all the changes in the talent system here: WoW Talent System 2.0 ( Patch 5.0.4 ).

Glyph Changes

Glyphs have changed yet again with this patch and forthcoming expansion.  Gone are prime glyphs and we are left with just major and minor glyphs.  Major glyphs are now the powerhouse glyphs offering powerful spell changes or utility bonuses.  Minor glyphs are now mainly about fun little changes or cosmetic options like changing the kind of tree you turn into as a druid.

Make sure you check out all your glyphs and grab the ones that make the most sense for your spec in the new patch.  Many of your old ones will still be useful, but many have changed drastically and may no longer be the best you could be using.

Class Changes

This is a huge change and one that could shock many players out there that are not in the Mists of Pandaria beta or have not bothered to jump onto the 5.0.4 PTR to test them out.  Pretty much all the classes have changed dramatically.   There are many changed or completely new spells and abilities which also means that most classes and specs have completely new or heavily revised attack, tanking, or healing rotations.  For most players it may feel like playing a whole new class.  Sure many abilities you know and love will still be there, but the priority of use and interaction with other abilities have changed.

New PVE queue system
Druids will now be even more unique in that they have 4 different specs.

While impossible to go through each and every class here, I will list some examples of drastic change, but in general be prepared to spend a while getting used to your class again and learning your new rotations.

Examples of Changes:

Druid – Druids change more than most simply due to the fact that they now have four different specs instead of the three that everyone else has.  Feral is now just for cat based DPS druids and a new Guardian spec has been created for tanking druids that focus on bear tanking.

Warlocks – Warlocks are another class that sees heavy changes.  Each spec now has a unique secondary resource to boost powers and affect their spells.  Soul Shard remain for damage and utility for Affliction warlocks. Demonic Fury is the new resource for Demonology and Unstable Embers are for Destruction warlocks.  Both are built up by casting normal rotational spells and can then be used to cast huge damage spells.  In addition to a second resource Warlocks can all summon any demon and are not limited by spec.

Scenarios – The Battle of Theramore

With patch 5.0.4 we will get to see the first of the new Scenarios being implemented in the game.  These will be a separate scenario for each of the Horde and the Alliance and will be based around the attack on Theramore by Warchief Garrosh.  This will tie in with the world events leading up to the release of Mists of Pandaria and will not be available until shortly before MoP launches.

Cross Realm Zones

Another feature that is coming with the patch that has some interesting bonuses is the cross realm zone feature.  This will allow certain non-busy zones to be marked by Blizzard as cross-realm enabled.  Once enabled players from multiple realms will all be able to interact in that zone.  This could be a great thing for players leveling new characters as it allows you to actually group up with other players in lower level zones. 

Currently when leveling a new character much of the world feels like a waste land.  You rarely run into anyone other than when you are in a capital city, or in an instance of some sort (PVE dungeon or PVP battleground).  Being a MMO it would be nice to actually see and play with other people in the regular world once in a while, and this change should allow that.

AOE Looting

As a player that likes herding together enemies and AOE’ing them down I really love this change.  AOE looting allows you to click on one enemy and it loots everything in range all at once for you.  This greatly increases loot speed while leveling, even if it will fill your bags with crap faster, since it grabs everything and you may not have.

Head Slot Enchants

Don’t go looking for your head slot enchant anymore when you get a new helm, they are gone from the game.  All past enchants are now cleared from items and the enchants are no longer purchasable.  While I am sad about this change, there is nothing we can do about it.  Just be aware and don’t waste time hunting for that new enchant.

Currency Conversion and Changes

A lot is going on with currenty this coming expansion and to get ready for it all in game currency is being dropped to a lower level. With this patch all valor points will be converted to justice points and all conquest points will be converted to honor points with no hard cap until the expansion. Also no valor or conquest points will be available to be earned until Mists of Pandaria launches. In addition all valor or conquest items will be available for justice or honor instead.

When Mists of Pandaria does launch there will be vendors for valor, justice, conquest, and honor items. However the long term goal for valor points is that it be used to upgrade items rather than buy raid level items. More will be released closer to the 5.1 patch though once MoP is out.

All Races available to play

Pandaren

All races will be available to play for everyone.  This means no longer with players with just the basic game be limited in their choice of races, they can now play goblins, blood elves, worgens, draenei, or pandaren, just like players that own all the expansions.  Most races will be available right away, but the Pandaren will not show up until the Mists of Pandaria expansion is released in September.  This is a nice change though, as players that jump into the game with a free started edition cannot try the races they really want to play, rather than be limited.

Account-wide Changes

This is a change that has been asked for many times over the years.  Players have really wanted their pets, mounts, and achievements to be available to more than just one character.  The pet and mount sharing is very cool so that you don’t have to spend obscene amounts of gold on each character just to get that mount that you like.  The pet part is great too since you can have the vanity pets you like available to all characters all the time.  This becomes important to players that get into the Pokemon based pet battles, which I still shake my head at but whatever…

The biggest part of this change is the achievements.  It has always seemed silly to most of us that you had to earn achievements on each character.  The issue being that achievements obviously never showed your ability or what you had really accomplished in game as a player when someone looks at your current character because you had other characters that could have better achievements.  This change makes it much easier to look at a player’s character and get an idea of what the player as a whole is about.  This makes it easier for guild masters to recruit or players to check each other out when looking for raid, instance, or PvP members.  All in all a much needed change.

You can find more details in Ghostcrawler's blog about it here: Bringing Achievements to the Account Level.

User Interface Changes

New PVE queue system
The new PVE queue system.

There are many different user interface changes being made to the game that will show up with this patch.  There are obvious ones like the new talent screen, but there are many others as well.  Just a few include:

  • The new core abilities tab in your spell book that shows what you should be using for your spec.
  • A new character creation screen with a much more user-friendly layout.
  • A new mount and pet screen
  • Consolidated buffs in the UI
  • Vendors all now have filter options to make finding items easier.
  • A new PVE queue tool that places all PVE queues in one area making it easier (and possible) to queue for multiple things at once.
  • A new help system that has a lot more hints for what things do.  If it annoys you, you can turn it off by clicking on the “I” in the top corner of any of the help screens.

You can find more information here: Mists of Pandaria Beta: UI Changes Preview.

Even more changes in Patch 5.0.4!

As you can see there are a whole slew of changes coming, even if the only ones coming are the ones listed above, which they are not.

You can find out even more by looking at the Patch 5.0.4 PTR patch notes now, or the official notes when they are released Tuesday.

 

Somebody may even love it because of them, but for me, talent changes are the worst thing they ever did to Wow. Period. Regarding rest, in Cata some changes, like to hunter, were to best possible, for the first time I have enjoyed to level my hunter not just for sake of having all classes maxed out. To druid were most hated in general would say.
But changes to talen tree are big no-no. The single most fun thing in any game is to get some candy after every new level. Not after 15, for some this could mean few months of gameplay at higher levels. Pure mess.

I have to completely disagree with the "candy" at every level as reason to level.

First off you are wrong, one only got a new talent point every other level. Only the odd levels gave these starting at eleven( don't know what game you have been playing).

Secondly, lots of these "candy" points were filler points till you had enough to get the spell/power one really wanted. Which now is a major talent every 15 levels which is about what it always was if not more to the good stuff.

Finally, new spells came at one randomly spread out then had to go to trainer and buy them to learn them.
Now built into spec and only need dust of disappearance to change the major talents one gets every 15 levels.
This means on the fly changing as needed in a raid or dungeon is possible instead of going back to trainer and spending good money on. Makes it a lot more flexible and cheaper because dust is pretty cheap.

So I guess what I am saying is you have no idea what you are talking about and haven't even given it a chance yet. You must be a joy to play with in game sound like a trade troll to me.

Not at all.

When you say: "First off you are wrong, one only got a new talent point every other level. Only the odd levels gave these starting at eleven( don't know what game you have been playing).". You forget that you actually get candy. Every OTHER level you get talent point and when not you get some new spell or improved old spell.

So candy after every level is. Once is called "new talent point", other times "spell".

Now at higher levels could mean for many few months of gameplay to get next candy.

You may disagree, but check forums. I think most will hate, many to point to even leave.

I have to agree with the candy man on this one

One great things about getting a talent point every 2nd lvl is there were alot more things that you could do to make your char unique and now that is gone.
Alot of ppl did not complain when they took the choice of putting them in any of the three trees at any lvl to have sub assai specs with out the last points in those trees.
That is wat made wow a great game your char was yours and there was not much chance that you will run into a char like yours.
Now you have A wopping 6 points to use to make your char unique out 18 choices.
great idea blizzard. get those 6 year olds to play a game that your real fans have been playing for 7 years.
You will lose them to this patch and if not about 3 weeks after mist of panda.

Worst idea ever 5.0.4 talent tree

Well then you like to be wrong then one never ever got a new spell every other level up to 85.

As to the originality of the talent system he or she did not argue that point and that might be true.
We don't know for sure how this will play out do let's give it a chance.
Since at least cata everyone put points the same way so not so original anyway.
This is an attempt to key people choose talents again in different specs instead of being forced to build one way.
I am not sure if I will like it but I won't argue for "candy" that didn't exist the way this person is saying though.

Again what are you talking about one doesn't get a spell every even level.
Maybe for the firt few but I guess you never leveled above 60. After 60 their are maybe at best 8 new spells one gets from there on. And even before 60 spells or new powers did not come every level at least know what you are talking about before complaining.

I have to agree with the candy man on this one

One great things about getting a talent point every 2nd lvl is there were alot more things that you could do to make your char unique and now that is gone.
Alot of ppl did not complain when they took the choice of putting them in any of the three trees at any lvl to have sub assai specs with out the last points in those trees.
That is wat made wow a great game your char was yours and there was not much chance that you will run into a char like yours.
Now you have A wopping 6 points to use to make your char unique out 18 choices.
great idea blizzard. get those 6 year olds to play a game that your real fans have been playing for 7 years.
You will lose them to this patch and if not about 3 weeks after mist of panda.

Worst idea ever 5.0.4 talent tree

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