Icecrown Citadel is going to be broken up into four distinct sections: The Lower Spire, Plagueworks, Crimson Hall, and Frostwing Halls. We plan on releasing these four sections of Icecrown Citadel over time and not all immediately when patch 3.3.0 goes live.
The first section that opens will include the Lord Marrowgar, Lady Deathwhisper, Icecrown Gunship Battle, and Deathbringer Saurfang encounters. Progress beyond that point will be prevented for several weeks. Then the Plagueworks will open with Rotface, Festergut, and Professor Putricide becoming available. After another period of time, the Crimson Hall will open and you can then fight the Blood Princes and Blood-Queen Lana'thel. The final Frostwing Halls unlock then occurs after that, making Valithria Dreamwalker, Sindragosa, and the Lich King available. We believe a staggered release of the content will allow players to experience Icecrown Citadel at a sustainable, measured, and ultimately more enjoyable pace.
I agree, I think staggering the release will make the content more enjoy able. Hopefully by the time ICC is released we will have killed Anub, and it will only take us an hour to clear ToGC. This way we can work on achievements like Mad Skill and Insanity while still getting to work on some new bosses.
I know the hardcore racers won't like it, but that is not me. It suits my playstyle and my guilds playstyle perfectly.
The Ashen Verdict provides reinforcements and material for players to assault Icecrown Citadel, but this support is not endless. Raids will have a limited number of attempts total each week to defeat the four most difficult encounters in Icecrown Citadel: Professor Putricide, Blood-Queen Lana'thel, Sindragosa, and the Lich King. As these boss encounters are unlocked, the number of attempts available per week will increase. The initial number of attempts provided for defeating Professor Putricide is only five. When Blood-Queen Lana'thel unlocks, the amount of total attempts remaining will increase to 10. Then when Sindragosa and the Lich King unlock, 15 total attempts will be available to defeat all four bosses. After a raid has exhausted their attempts for the week, the Ashen Verdict must withdraw their support and the four most difficult bosses all
despawn and become unavailable for the week. The limited attempt system is a feature of both Normal and Heroic difficulty.
In the weeks and months after all twelve encounters are unlocked, additional attempts against the final four boss encounters become available. This represents the Ashen Verdict growing more powerful and gaining a stronger foothold in Icecrown Citadel.
As a general concept I don't have a problem with Blizzard limiting the number of attempts a guild can make on a boss each week. I do think it makes it easier to compare guilds who spend 30 hours a week raiding with guild that spend 10-15 hours a week. However, I don't think the ToGC model of limited attempts had any real impact on most guilds. Fifty attempts was to much, and it ended up giving most guilds 45-50 attempts on Anub when they first started working on him. I think the new model is trying to fix that issue, but I think it fails miserably for a couple of reasons.
- First, 5 attempts is just to low unless the boss is relatively easy. It also doesn't fix the problem that by the time we get to Arthas we will have a lot more attempts because we should be killing the earlier bosses with ease at this point. In my opinion they should increase the number of attempts you start with, and decrease the rate at which you gain more. For example, the first week you should have 10 attempts on the first boss. When the second boss is released you gain an additional 3 attempts. When Arthas is released you gain another 3. This way you don't walk up to Arthas with a thousand attempts, but you also have enough attempts for the first boss to put some real work into him.
- Second, this system favors PTR guilds. Some guilds already have dozens of attempts on these bosses. I know we benefit from the guides they write but that is not the same as doing the actual encounter. It just seems unfair to me that they can start these encounters with unlimited attempts and we only start with 5 because we didn't have the time to help test.
Third this system discourages us from doing some of the bosses on hard mode. Unless I'm reading it wrong the limited attempts are tied to the normal and Heroic versions of the bosses. If I was a raid leader and wanted to work on Arthas, why would I risk wasting an attempt on Hard Mode Blood-Queen when I can do it on normal with less risk. Therefore, a lot of guild are going to get their first kills and not do it again for several weeks because they want to work on something else.I misread the post.
To further help raids, Varian Wrynn and Garrosh Hellscream will begin to provide
assistance by inspiring the armies attacking Icecrown Citadel. This is represented as an additional zone wide spell effect applied to all players that will increase their hit points, damage dealt, and healing done. This effect will also increase in effectiveness over time. Players may opt out of the spell's effect if they so wish.
Obviously, little is know about this spell, but my first reaction is that I hate it. I realize you can click it off, but a gradual built in nerf is not the way Blizzard should be tuning encounters. It just feels cheap to me. This way you never know if you just downed that boss because you improved or if the the fight was finally nerfed enough.
Picking up additional gear from one week to the next is already an indirect nerf to the content, why do then need to provide this charity. Blizzard should design the encounters to be as though as they think they should be. If it's decided that the encounter is to hard then nerf it, but I want to kill the boss on the intended difficulty. This just feels like the MMO equivalent of having your mommy stand over you and give you a participation ribbon at a swim meet.