The Glory of the Molten Core Raider Achievement is Live
We know competition is fierce on Ascension: from World PvP to Battlegrounds, from Realm Firsts to raid clears, the thought of climbing higher than your peers is exciting. With Ahn’qiraj around the corner, there’ll be plenty of guild competition to see who can overcome bosses, and their custom mechanics, the quickest. However, we also wanted to introduce a little something extra in the meantime for the players who just really like to tackle challenges.
Introducing the Glory of the Molten Core Raider Achievements!
Thanks to one of our newest developers, we’ve got a brand new set of unique, custom achievements reminiscent of "Glory of the Ulduar Raider"! These achievements were crafted entirely from the ground up, designed to give raiders a bit of optional, extra fun and challenge should they desire it.
Some of these Look Tough...
Of course, it’s not just for the sake of proving how great you are that makes these worth completing. Satisfy all the requirements of “Glory of the Molten Core Raider”, and you’ll receive a mount worthy of your commitment!
Look at my Horse, my Horse is Amazin’
We hope you’re excited to try out these new challenges, heroes! Our goal with them is to give you a bit of extra fun, and a few more things to do, as we creep closer to bigger updates. We hope you have a blast with them, and if you do, we’d love to give the same treatment to Blackwing Lair, Zul’Gurub, and other classic dungeons and raids; with fitting rewards, of course.
Good luck completing these new achievements, heroes!
The silithid retreat to their fortress. The first battle against the Qiraji is yours. The Horde and Alliance have nearly finished their War Effort, and the time to strike has come. The Ruins and Temple will soon be open: now you must destroy the hive. Take your fight to Ahn’Qiraj, and put a final end to the minions of C’thun.
But be warned--the Void will stop at nothing to lure you into its tendrils.
The Ruins of Ahn’Qiraj and Temple of Ahn’Qiraj Open Soon!
With the release of AQ, we’d like to try something new in the form of staggered bosses. Our goal with this is to make sure each boss is finely tuned, and to ensure that AQ lives up to the challenge it presented so long ago. The schedule is as follows:
Conditions to Open Ahn'Qiraj
(1) The War Effort Complete
(Note: Laughing Skull’s War Effort will automatically complete once they assemble their first Scepter of the Shifting Sands)
(2) Horde and Alliance Troops Moved to Silithus
(5 Days After War Effort is Completed)
Week 1: The Ruins of Ahn’Qiraj Open
Week 1: Kurinaxx & General Rajaxx
Week 2: Moam, Buru the Gorger, and Ayamiss the Hunter
Week 3: Ossiran the Unscarred
Week 4: The Temple of Ahn’Qiraj Opens
Week 4: The Prophet Skeram, Vem, Yauj, and Kri (Bug Trio), and Battleguard Sartura
Week 5: Fankriss the Unyielding, Viscidus, and Princess Huhuran
Week 6: The Twin Emperors, Ouro the Sandworm
Week 7: C’thun
By focusing on only a few bosses per week, our AI devs can REALLY focus on each and every boss, making sure they’re tuned and offering the best possible raiding experience to our players. We’ve learned a lot from past raids, and think this is the absolute best way to proceed forward. In addition, by staggering the bosses in this way, guilds will have a real competition on their hands: with new bosses released each week, the glory of Realm Firsts will go to the guilds that master the fight quickest, rather than the guild that stayed up for days and missed sleep to get all the boss kills.
We hope you’re excited for the release of Ahn’Qiraj, heroes. Our goal is to make it a true raiding challenge, and we hope you don’t mind us taking a little bit more time to really polish up each and every encounter.
The Scepter of the Shifting Sands Questline is Open
Once, long ago, a war erupted between the Night Elves of Teldrassil and the insectoid Qiraji of Silithus. Lead by Fandral Staghelm, the Night Elf forces pushed back the swarm, determined to end their threat. However, after the savage death of Fandral’s son, the Night Elf forces suffered a tragic defeat, and the Qiraji spread from Silithus through Un’goro Crater, all the way to the Caverns of Time. In desperation, Fandral turned to the Bronze Dragonflight for aid.
The Dragons of Time answered.
Gathering their brethren, the green, blue, and red dragonflight, the Brood of Nozdormu aided Fandral’s forces in their fight against the Qiraji, descemating the silithid forces and again driving the insects back to their hive in Ahn’Qiraj. Once contained, Fandral and the dragonflights used their magic to create an impenetrable wall around the ancient temple. Sealed by the Scarab Gong and the Scepter of the Shifting Sands, the dragonflights asked Fandral to watch over the Scepter, lest their armies need to enter Ahn’Qiraj and eliminate it’s denizens once and for all. Fandral, enraged by the death of his son, shattered the Scepter, determined that Ahn’Qiraj would never be opened again.
Dormant for hundreds of years, the Qiraji now stir beyond the Scarab Wall. Their prison has become their fortress, and inside, their numbers swell. As the dragonflights feared centuries ago, Ahn’Qiraj must be opened.
The Scepter of the Shifting Sands must be reforged.
Heroes! The Scepter of the Shifting Sands questline has been released! Once shattered by Fandral Staghelm, it now falls to you to re-assemble the scepter and enter Ahn’Qiraj!
This intensive questline has been fully scripted to work exactly as it did in Vanilla, with a few quality of life exceptions: the boss items, once limited to a single player, are now lootable by everyone in the raid! The race for the Scepter is on!
As always, please report any bugs with the quest chain to our bug-tracker so we can get them functioning properly. Additionally, please note that the Scarab Gong will lay dormant until the War Effort has been completed, and Alliance and Horde troops have gathered in Silithus. Good luck befriending the Brood of Nozdormu, heroes!
Season 1 is drawing to a close. We hope you’ve had a blast with Ravenholdt’s unique features--from the Karma System to 1v1 PvP Zones, from the staggered level cap to unique world PvP quests; whether you fought as a Protector or an Outlaw, Horde or Alliance, we truly hope you had fun.
As we wind down Ascension’s first seasonal realm, we want to bring you up to speed with our plans moving forward: what we’ve learned from the season, and how Ascension’s legacy realms will benefit because of it:
1v1 Zones and the Karma System are coming to Laughing Skull--The Karma system really did it’s job on Ravenholdt: it encouraged players to band together and make friends, team up against foes, and group in the open world while still allowing the dangerous Free-For-All-PvP atmosphere of our High-Risk realms. In fact, the Karma system went a long way towards fixing High-Risk’s biggest problem: the inability of players to form social bonds. This problem, while seemingly small, was one of the biggest reasons why new players left High-Risk. Without allies-- without a group--enemies seem much more overwhelming, especially to new players. When gear is lost, a few good allies can be the difference between wanting to quit the game entirely, or wanting to stay and plot revenge. Thanks to the Karma system, we had an overwhelming number of players choose the latter.
Meanwhile, 1v1 PvP zones massively encouraged better and more dynamic world PvP. By locking some zones to single combat, we saw more players than ever before venture out of cities with better gear to really test their skills and builds in combat. Without the threat of gank squads or unfair fights in these areas, we hope 1v1 PvP zones will continue to promote intense world PvP experiences on High-Risk.
We’re thrilled to announce that we’re moving both the Karma System and 1v1 Zones to Laughing Skull. We’re bringing jump pad’s too!
Characters on Ravenholdt will be transferring to Legacy Realms--With Season 1 ending soon, it’s just about time for characters on Ravenholdt to choose their new homes. On Friday, September 14th, players will be able to chose which of the two legacy realms they would like to transfer to--Andorhal or Laughing Skull. Choose wisely--it’s a one way trip!
The Seasonal Points Cosmetic Vendor will be added with the release of Season 2--Over the course of Season 1, players earned a number of Seasonal Points. With the release of Season 2, a vendor will be added where you can pick up cosmetic items with your seasonal points.
Season 1 was an amazing experience for both Ascension and the Ascension team. We’ve learned a LOT over the past few months, and moving forward, we’ll be able to use that knowledge to improve not only our Legacy realms, but future seasonal realms as well (for example, we learned that level caps were a bit too long). Additionally, we’ll be opening up a feedback thread within the coming days togather input from you guys about Ascension Season 1.
We hope you had a blast with Ascension Season 1. Prep your characters for transfer, and we’ll see you on the Legacy Realms!
Characters will transfer from Ravenholdt on Friday, September 14th.
Getting to world PvP zones is tough; you have to walk to the flight master, open the map, and click once on your destination. Then you have to wait a whole five minutes to get there; it’s really just too much. If only there were some sort of pad, we thought, scratching our collective developer heads, that players could step on to be beamed up by a zeppelin and air dropped into the PvP zone of their choice.
Then we made a pad that allowed players to be beamed up by a zeppelin and air dropped into the PvP zone of their choice. Introducing Jump Pads!
Ready for Pickup
Jump pads are a brand new feature exclusive (at the moment) to our Seasonal Realm, Ravenholdt. A whole new way to travel, jump pads allow you to instantly be air dropped to one of several PvP zones.
Of Course, It’s Up to You to Figure Out Where You’re Going
Once you press a button, you’ll be zapped up and air dropped into the zone you chose. With a mobile parachute and control of your character, you can steer your way to anywhere you want.
Drop into PvP with Style
Our goal with jump pads is to implement quicker, less tedious travel for all heroes--especially outlaws. Now, for a cheap fair, you can jump right into your preferred PvP zone and start fighting. We hope you PvPers will be able to use jump pads to do more of what you love.
You can find Jump Pads in both Booty Bay and Ratchet.
Take it easy out there, heroes!
Note that zeppelins, like busses, have a schedule: they’ll only pick you up once every 30 minutes.
Season 1 begins in less than an hour, and with it comes another balance patch! Though not quite as large as our July balance pack, the August balance pack has still got around 50 changes to the abilities you love. Some of these changes are general tweaks to things we thought were getting a little out of hand (we’re looking at you, % Damage Reduction), while others were made with the upcoming level cap system in mind to make sure plenty of builds were viable as you compete on Ravenholdt. You can view the full list on our changelog, but below we’ve included a few that should really whet your appetite.
Good luck on the seasonal, Heroes--whether you’re Defender of the Pure, or a salty dog Outlaw!
Fixed a bug where Hunter pets and Warlock demons wouldn’t gain hit and expertise based on their owner’s hit.
Wands now deal damage according to their school, and scale slightly with spell power (Bring back Wand Specialization!)
Soul Link now shares 6% of your damage taken with your demon, down from 10%, and the Demonic Embrace talent now increases the shared Soul Link damage by 2/4/6%, down from 4/7/10%.
Improved Shadowform now gives 3/6% damage reduction, down from 5/10%.
Travel Form base mana increased from 26%, up from 13%.
The ‘Helper’ Rank is being Added to our Public Discord
There are those among you who would seek to aid the naive, the innocent, the fledgling--the new player. There are those of you who would dedicate your time and energy to assisting fresh adventurers find their place on Ascension. Whether by answering questions, helping with specs, or just lending friendly advice, certain veterans go above and beyond when it comes to helping new players on our server.
We notice time and again certain individuals who continually and consistently help new players on Ascension’s official discord. These players reach out to lend a helping hand when they see someone in need, and we see it every single day. As gamers ourselves, we recognize what an incredibly important gesture that is; community is everything in a game like ours, and when a new player’s first experience with others is a powerful veteran caring enough about them to help--well, that speaks volumes. With toxicity the norm online these days, and with negative and hostile interactions becoming a standard part of multiplayer games, getting a happy “Hello!” and a bit of help can COMPLETELY shift a new player’s opinion of the game they’re playing. We mean it, and we can’t stress it enough: the positivity that these helpful individuals on our Discord lend the community is one of the greatest gifts that players could contribute to Ascension--it’s one of the greatest gifts they could contribute to gaming.
We would like, in some small way, to acknowledge and promote their actions.
We are adding a new Rank to our public discord: the ‘Helper’ rank.
This is not a rank players can ask to be promoted to. Rather, it is a rank that our Game Masters and Community Managers will promote players to if they demonstrate a true devotion to helping others. If our GM’s and CM’s notice players consistently engaging in positive and helpful interactions on Discord, they’ll be promoted to the Helper rank as both an acknowledgement of their actions, and as a way to better help them accomplish what they’re already doing. This is our way of Knighting you, helpful players, and showing just how important your kindness is.
By granting players the Helper rank, new players will instantly know where to go if they are ever in need of advice or assistance. No matter where you are on our quest through Ascension, Helpers have got your back.
Thank you, heroes, for being a positive light on Ascension.
We hope you’re enjoying the slew of changes we released on July 15th in what was our largest balance update ever! There were buffs (mostly buffs), there were nerfs (mostly % stat nerfs), and there were more changes than ever before. In addition to some Mystic Enchantment, individual item, and general changes, we took a look at over 90 different talents and abilities and made changes, big and small, to how they work, what they accomplished, and how they affected players overall.
In the wake of this update, we wanted to take a moment to share with you a few of our reasons for these changes, as well as our vision moving forward:
Reduction of Five Point Talents:
Although players have a good amount of Talent Essences on Ascension, when it comes to classless, it doesn’t feel like a lot to play around with. Many builds have severely tight talent requirements, leaving players with very little wiggle room to make interesting choices. To combat this, one of our goals moving forward is to transform many five-point talents into three-point talents; by which we mean, we want to change a good deal of five-point talents into three-point talents and adjust them accordingly. You’ve seen it with cast speed talents: now you’ll see it with Maelstrom Weapon, Mind Mastery, Arcane Mind, Flurry, and more--and you can expect it on additional talents as we move forward. The reason for this is to free up talent points for players to play with, providing some wiggle room for certain specs that would otherwise be too talent-intensive. We hope to see more interesting builds with these extra points.
Keep an eye open for more five-point reductions in the future!
Limitation of Percent Stat Increases:
We’re not huge fans of raw stat stacking on Ascension. It’s boring, it’s simple, and it’s not very dynamic play--you stack one stat and watch your numbers increase. We don’t like it! We’re working to limit the power and effectiveness of pure stat stacking, and instead move towards interesting and dynamic talent and ability synergies. This one is a work in progress, but please keep in mind that we’re not out to destroy player’s raw power builds. However, we would like player strength to come from their own skill, and the interaction and synergy between abilities and talents that they choose, not because they’ve stacked and converted egregiously high stats.
De-Class Masking, Opening Up Synergies, and Buffs
As a follow up to that, a HUGE focus for this patch and future changes will be de-class masking talents and abilities, and opening up new synergies between classes. Basically, we want more things working together. Why? Because synergy means cross-class specs, which means more viable builds, which means more ways for you to customize and play, which means more fun. We made several changes this patch that focus on opening up new builds to players, including:
Maelstrom Weapon: Now additionally effects both Fireball and Frostbolt, potentially opening up Fire Hybrid and Frost Hybrid classes.
Missile Barrage: Can now proc from both Moonfire and Starfire, encouraging full Arcane specs and allowing Arcane Missiles to benefit from the effects of Starfire and the Earth and Moon talent.
Serendipity: Increased to 5/10/15% reduced cast time on Greater Heal and Prayer of Healing spells per stack, up from 4/8/12%, and can now also be triggered by Smite, potentially opening up holy hybrid damage/healing casters.
Additionally, this balance pack was filled with individual buffs to spells and talents that increase the effectiveness of 2h Melee Builds, Shadow spec synergy, 1h weapon specs, and Restoration Druid specs. We hope that a bit of love in their direction will encourage players to try them out, and increase the number of competitive builds on Ascension. With regards to PvP
The importance of PvP combat on Ascension can’t be stressed enough; both on High Risk and Low Risk, competition between players in battlegrounds, in arenas, and in the world, is one of our greatest focuses. Our eternal aim is to have as many viable specs as possible for players to build into, experience, and enjoy, so that when a player has a class fantasy they want to explore, they can make it happen.
With that in mind, a few of our changes this patch were aimed at tuning down builds we thought were doing exceptionally well--too exceptionally well. Although we realize this negatively impacts players who have strived to perfect these builds, we make these changes for the overall health of PvP on Ascension: when a handful of specs are performing too amazingly, it limits the creativity that is the hallmark of what Ascension should be.
We have a good grasp of what is strong on both Laughing Skull and Andorhal, and we’ll continue to make adjustments there to prevent the Meta from becoming stale--both by keeping the power levels of specs in line with each other, and by adding new viable specs into the mix.
Finally, as is always the case with big updates, its often hard to predict the consequences of changes: we’ll be keeping an eye on the tweaks we’ve made, and on PvP as a whole, and making adjustments accordingly.
We hope you’re enjoying the changes, heroes. Keep your eyes open for more updates coming soon, and start getting hyped for our first Seasonal Realm, coming late July / early August!
Players Gain Mystic Extracts Faster, and with Less Runes.
Gathering Mystic Enchantments is one of the most effective ways to skyrocket your build’s power. Few things on Ascension feel better than finally extracting and applying the enchantment you’ve been searching for.
However, few things feel worse than harvesting several Mystic Enchantments, applying them, and finding out that the build you were working towards isn’t super effective. With Mystic Extracts difficult to come by, knowing that one was wasted on a spec that isn’t going to be played can be absolutely heartbreaking. We recognized this, and we made a change.
We’ve re-assessed the rate at which players acquire [Mystic Extracts]. The cost has been lowered by more than 50%, and there will no longer be such a harsh scaling.
Basically, we’ve lowered the EXP required to get to the next level of Mystic Enchanting by half, and reduced the scaling difficulty between levels--meaning it will require less [Mystic Runes] to get to the next level of enchanting.
The TL;DR version is that it’s now easier than ever to get [Mystic Extracts].
We realized that with the old system, players were being punished for trying new specs and experimenting with Mystic Enchantment extractions. With Mystic Extracts being so rare, players were hesitant to spend them on anything other than exactly what they were looking for. We hope with this new scaling system, players won’t feel shoehorned into only spending extracts on meta enchantments, and will be free to play and experiment with any build they’d like to try.
We hope you really get creative out there, Heroes!
Check out our answers to the community's top questions on the Ascension Q&A!
The Firestarter is an AoE damage dealer designed to burn down as many foes as possible, as quickly as possible. Though weaker than other specs in dungeons and boss fights, he excels at clearing massive numbers of monsters that other builds can't manage. The Firestarter doesn't rely on gear or RE's to get the job done; however, once he gets them, he becomes blazingly efficient.
When playing the Firestarter on High Risk, be sure to pick up Stealth, Vanish, and the Master of Deception talent: these will ensure that you can escape a situation before becoming a veritable loot pinata.
We hope you find plenty of places to incinerate, heroes!