News

Rise of the Damned

 

 

Heroes!

 

The Plaguelands stir.

 

Above the fetid air looms a terrible evil, casting its shadow over the corrupted soil. Corpses stir from battles past, ripped from their slumber by necrotic magics. The dead return to life, and the plague that once claimed Lordaeron creeps through Azeroth once again.


The Scourge Invasion begins.

 

It is up to you to drive it back, heroes. From his citadel Naxxramas, Kel’thuzad sends soldiers of the Lich King to every corner of Azeroth. They drift through the sky in Black Necropoli, blistering with undead magic and summoning corpses wherever they fly. You must track down these bastions of undeath and destroy the Necrotic Crystals that power them. Shatter the crystal, slay the Scourge Commander, and destroy the Necropolis.

 

Treasure and glory await you if you succeed.

 

The Scourge Invasion has come to Ascension!

 

Like the Qiraji Invasions before, the Scourge Invasion has been outfitted with several custom Ascension features. To begin, contribution tracking will be returning as a measure of how large your reward is once the final wave and boss is slain. Second, defeating a wave will award all contributing players a scavenged crate based on their contribution, which has a chance to contain all manner of incredible gear. Third, invasion points will appear all throughout the world for all levels: whether you’re leveling up, or already 60, you’ll be able to participate in the Scourge Invasions!

 

Speak to the Argent Emissary in your Capital City to find a Scourge Invasion near you.


Good luck, heroes.

 

 

 

 

 

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Just Can't Resist You (Except Now you Can)

 

 

Resistance is (not) Futile

Resistance Overhaul and New Resistance Calculations

 

Heroes!

 

Resistance is one of those vanilla features that’s strangely esoteric. Is it good to have? Absolutely! How good is it to have? Well, it helps you resist spells! Okay, but what exactly does that mean?

 

Here are the basics:

 

Resistance as a mechanic is capable of two things: for spells that only deal damage (like Fireball or Shadowbolt), resistance can help you partially resist the spell, negating a portion of the damage it deals. For spells that have a debuff (like Frost Nova or Slow), they can be resisted entirely or not at all (these are called ‘binary’ resists).

 

It’s no surprise then that stacking Resistance can be immensely powerful--in PvP to fully resist spells like Death Coil, Shadowfury, and Dragon’s Breath, and in PvE to partially resist high-damage boss spells or AoE. However, just how powerful it can be is a matter of quirky random chance. Although players could stack resistance to get a sort of damage reduction out of it, the method by which the game calculated the effectiveness of their resistance, and the amount of damage resisted,was a strange jumble of damage thresholds and random rolls. If you didn’t understand anything in that last sentence, don’t worry--we’re changing it anyway!

 

Resistances have been overhauled to rely on a new formula, which makes partial resists more reliable, obvious, and consistent. From now on, Resistances will grant flat damage reduction.

 

This change is being applied only to partial resists--binary resists will remain unchanged.

 

This new system makes the damage reduction granted by resistance a lot simpler. Essentially, resistances function similarly to armor now, granting % damage reduction based on how much of a given resistance you have. So, if you switch on Shadow Protection Aura and find yourself with exactly 60 Shadow Resistance, you can rest happily knowing you’ll be taking exactly 12.587% less shadow damage from all sources.

 

We hope this new system will allow players to more accurately predict how much resistance they’ll need for things like elemental raid mechanics (fire damage in Molten Core, and Frost effects in Naxxramas), and how much damage their own elemental spells will deal. Although the mitigation resists apply is lower in the beginning--so that players will have to do more than just switch on their paladin auras--resistance is now set up so that the more of a given resistance you have, the more effective each point of it becomes. Additionally, we hope the change makes resistances more predictable in PvP--players looking to overcome certain spell schools can stack resistance to that school, and casters of that school will be able to rely more on spell penetration and effects such as Curse of Elements to guarantee more damage.   

 

To summarize, the RNG nature of resistances is being substituted for a system that is predictable, consistent, and measurable!

 

Good luck out there, heroes!

 

 

 

 

 

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End of Season Updates to Laughing Skull!

 

Treasure and Temples, Ruins and Rares

Updates to Laughing Skull on the Horizon

 

Heroes of Laughing Skull!

 

With Season 2 Ending, and a slew of new characters on their way to Legacy Realms, it’s time once again for some updates! While this first batch targets Laughing Skull in particular, players on both realms can look forward to more updates for their realm coming soon.

 

Lets jump in!

 

Temple of Ahn’Qiraj Loot added as World Drops!

 

Let the whispers of the Old Gods embrace you, heroes; AQ loot will soon be available as world drops!

 

Soon, loot from the Temple and Ruins of Ahn’Qiraj will be added to the loot templates of world monsters: that means you’ll be able to snag even rarer gear from monsters roaming Azeroth. However, AQ loot drop rates will be based on the ilvl system, so if you’re looking to nab a new cloak, trinket, or ring, you’ll need to head out in your best gear. The risk might be worth it though, heroes; Ahn’Qiraj items are the strongest currently available.

 

Loot from Ouro and C’thun will be added at a later date. Additionally, for set pieces, the actual set piece will drop, rather than the quest item used for turn-in.

 

Rare Spawn Tweaks and Randomization

 

Rare Spawns on Laughing Skull are pretty exciting to spot--they award bonus EXP when slain, have a higher chance to drop epic loot, and because of that, feel really great to find and slay. With the coming update to Laughing Skull, Rare Spawns are changing in a few different ways to make them easier to encounter, and more satisfying to conquer.

 

  1. All Rare Monsters level 50+ have random respawn timers

    1. Rather than leave Rare Spawns on predictable, calculable timers that savvy players can farm, Rare Spawn Timers are getting a bit of chaos added to them. Now, after a Rare Spawn dies, the time before it respawns will be random. That means a higher chance for more players to  see and slay them, and less possibility for a few players to farm them on rotation.

  2. Lowered the Respawn Timer for many high-respawn-timer Rare Monsters

  3. Tweaked some special Rare Monsters

    1. Duke Ragereaver, Baron Bloodbane, and Death Knight Soulbearer have had their levels adjusted to 59, and will drop loot accordingly

    2. Tidelord Rrurgaz is now Rare and will drop loot accordingly

 

Elemental Invasion Overhaul

 

Every so often, Azeroth is attacked by Elemental Invaders. Similar to World Events, these creatures pour in from the nether in specific locations and wreak havoc, until adventurers put them down. These Invasion Points are great places to nab some Mystic Orb Shards, and on High-Risk, a great place to snag some epic loot--each invasion has an associated World Boss, known for dropping tasty treasures. These Elemental Lords can be solo’d by skillful adventurers, and if they go down, they have a very high chance to drop epic dungeon loot.

 

With this update, however, Invasion Bosses will be a bit trickier to lure out into the open: now, in order to coax them out, you’ll need to halt their underlings.

 

Every time you slay an Elemental Invader, the Elemental Lord has a chance to spawn. With each invader you kill, the chance grows, until finally the Lord shows itself. The final battle, then, is up to you.

 

What this means for players is this: if you see an Elemental Invasion announcement ring out, you won’t have to worry that someone will have slain the boss before you even get there. Any player who arrives first will need to slay Invaders, giving other heroes a chance to join the frey. With more people tackling Invaders, forcing the boss to spawn, there’s a higher chance of players running into each other--meaning either more friends, or more enemies. Can you put aside your differences long enough to slay a boss? Or will you arrive a little afterwards and slay those who got there before you, taking the Boss for yourself?


These updates will be arriving to Laughing Skull later this week! We hope you’re excited to delve out into the open world and collect your newest gear set. Don’t forget to ignore those whispers when you’re covered in Ahn’Qiraj epics--they might drive you mad.

 

 

 

 

 

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Would you Like to Save Your Progress?

 

Instance Checkpoints are Live!

Would you Like to Save your Progress?

 

Heroes,

 

Have you ever been close to clearing an instance, only to wipe on a boss a few times and spend just as much time as you did attempting it running back to fight it? Have you ever longed for some kind of ‘save point’ where, if your group wiped, you could start from there instead of running all the way back to the instance and then through the instance? Sure, it’s not so bad if your group wiped on the first boss--but what if it’s the final boss? That’s so much time running! How much time have you got to waste running?

 

Here on Ascension, we believe as much in small, quality of life updates as we do in large, foundation-shattering ones--see our Foundations article for the latter. We also believe that it’s 2019, and while the walk-of-shame back to a boss room might have been a necessity of 2005 era gaming, it isn’t needed now.

 

Introducing Instance Checkpoints.

 

Instance Checkpoints are simple: every time you engage a boss in a raid, you’ll unlock a checkpoint near that boss. If at any point after that members of your group meet an untimely end, they’ll have the choice to revive at the checkpoint instead of the nearest graveyard. That means, if your raid wipes on a boss, you’ll be able to revive at that boss’s checkpoint, buff up, and give it another attempt. Plain and simple!

 

This change is a quick and easy quality of life one. Our hope is that it will give raiders more time to raid, and remove the often disheartening struggle to regroup after wiping on a boss. It’s tough enough to manage 25 people, and we want guilds to be able to progress through raids without the demoralizing addition of 5-10 minute walk-backs. Now, with the Checkpoint system, guilds will be able to rez, buff up, and try again with a lot less downtime.

 

We hope you guys enjoy the Checkpoint system!

 

 

 

 

 

Comments (3)

All Seasons Change!

Rather watch the Article than read it? Check out our newest series, Ascension Archives!

 

 

The Gauntlet Ends

Season 2 Concludes, and New Updates Await!

 

Heroes!

 

Season 2 has come to an end, and with it, the closing of our seasonal realm Bloodscalp! We hope you all had an amazing time throughout Season 2: whether you were completing quests on the new Hero’s Call and Warchief’s Command boards, tackling World Events, wrecking PvP, or Protecting the innocent--whether you were embracing the chaos of Wildcard mode, or perfecting your pristine, preferred build, or even starting on Ascension for the first time, we hope Season 2 was an amazing experience for you.

 

Here are the features we implemented from Season 2 to our Legacy Realms!

 

  • The Hero’s Call and Warchief’s Command Boards are live on Legacy Realms

  • World Events have found their home on both Laughing Skull and Andorhal

  • The Karma System will be coming to Laughing Skull

  • All characters from Bloodscalp will be moving to both Legacy Realms

 

With the closing of Bloodscalp, characters on the realm will be transferring to BOTH Laughing Skull and Andorhal!

 

Rest assured, heroes, that your adventure isn’t over. Bloodscalp might be closing, but your characters will be whisked away safely to their new homes on our Legacy Realms, Laughing Skull and Andorhal. For those of you looking to continue your High Risk adventures, Laughing Skull is the place to go for epic world PvP, FFA PvP, non-soulbound items, the Outlaw and Protector system, and loot drop on death.

 

However, if you’re looking to leave the high (risk) life behind, or you just got some sweet gear and don’t want to lose it, you can continue your quest for power on Andorhal with all of Ascension’s classless features, without the loot drop on death.

 

All of that said, however, the truth is you won’t have to make a choice on which realm to go to--since characters are transferring to both legacy realms, you’ll be able to try each out to find which one is right for you!

 

Character transfers will be happening on [DATE]. You WILL need to manually transfer your character by logging into the Ascension Website, navigating to the store, and selecting LEGACY TRANSFER (which will cost 0DP).

 

Before that happens, there are a few things left you need to do!

 

  1. Make sure you have empty character slots on both Laughing Skull and Andorhal, so that your character is transferred properly. Don’t lose your character just because you needed that 10th Bank Alt!

  2. Spend your Seasonal Points! Seasonal points don’t roll over to next season, and there’s no benefit to saving them. Make sure to spend them all on the stuff you want!

  3. Players intending to play on Andorhal should note that any traditionally soulbound items you have will become soulbound upon transferring.

  4. Guilds and Guild Banks will NOT transfer over to the Legacy Realms, so make sure you make plans with your friends to meet back up on the other side!

  5. Personal banks DO transfer to legacy realms.

  6. MAIL will be subject to arcane nether magic, and may not make it to Legacy Realms. It’s probably wise to empty your mailbox.

 

Finally, don’t hang up your cloaks just yet: Season 2 may be ending, but we have a slew of new updates coming very soon. In fact, the merge will kick off some major updates to Ascension, so once you hit your new home, get ready to explore some brand new changes!

 

If you have any questions, please feel free to hit up our GM’s on Discord. Otherwise, we’ll see you on our Legacy Realms, heroes!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Redefining Foundations

 

Redefining Foundations - Part 1

MAJOR Updates to Ascension Fundamentals, Core Mechanics, Values, Balance Philosophies, and More

 

 

Heroes,

 

Over the past year and a half since Ascension’s official release, the game has seen some intense fluctuation. It’s shifted, transformed, and grown with every update. As it has, the game has become better defined through new mechanics, the tweaking of old ones, and the elimination of unsuccessful ones. The goal of these changes is to bring Ascension to a place where players can explore the world they love in whatever way they imagine; in whatever way is perfect for them: a world where they can play however they want to play.

 

Ascension is evolving, every day, to become closer to that goal. Each update, each balance change, mechanic, new system, custom content, and bug fix is aimed at succeeding in that goal.

 

With this set of updates, we’re taking a look at some foundational system changes coming to Ascension.

 

  1. Massive Respec Cost Reduction and Reset

  2. World Events to Legacy Realms

  3. Armor Overhaul

  4. Mystic Enchantment Stacking Limited to 3

  5. Mystic Enchantment System Changes

  6. Complete Re-Tuning of Raids

 

Massive Respec Cost Overhaul

 

The gold cost of resetting spells and talents, as well as reset the meter that causes each subsequent reset to cost a little more, has been drastically reduced with this update. The baseline cost of resetting spells and talents at level 60 has been cut in half.  

 

Additionally, the “how many times have you respec’d” meter has been reset this update, meaning you’re back to the cheapest possible resets you can have. While the cost will still increase slightly every time you reset your spells or talents, it’s now MUCH cheaper to experiment with builds, meaning you’re one step closer to creating your ideal hero.

 

The cost of resetting Spells/Abilities at 60 is now 50g, increasing slightly with every reset.

The cost of resetting Talents at 60 is now 10g, increasing slightly with every reset.

 

Try a Few Different Builds, it’s Cheap!

 

The implication of this massive change is that new players will have more opportunities to experiment and explore the classless system without severe repercussion. It will cost less, at the beginning, to change specs, which means players can feel free to try new things and discover the spec--and identity--that is right for them. This change is part of our goal of making the early game friendlier to newcomers to encourage growth across all of our realms.

 

World Events

 

The Scarlet Crusade at Tyr’s Hand has Been Infected with the Plague!

 

For those of you looking for a way to stock up on Mystic Orbs, we’re happy to announce that World Events are coming to our Legacy Realms!

 

World Events are randomized, spontaneous events that trigger on occasion out in the world. When they appear, a announcement will ring out to all players, prompting adventurers to come and clear unique challenges while competing against each other for supremacy. The creatures in the World Event area contain bonus loot, and are designed to encourage many players to flock to one specific area. Like the Hero’s Call and Warchief’s Command boards, World Events are another step forward in giving players a reason to go out into the world, encounter others, make friends, and take down enemies.

 

At current, the World Event system has about twelve randomized events, each with their own unique challenge, and their own custom mechanics. As you venture throughout Azeroth, be sure to keep an eye out for events near you: they’re a great way to get your hands on Mystic Orbs, and meet new people.

 

But be careful, Heroes: not everyone you meet is friendly.



Armor Overhaul

 

Re-Designing the Fundamentals of Armor

 

On Ascension, the difference between armor types has been pretty quirky. Cloth and Leather wearers could jump up to Mail and Plate level armor values simply by placing two points into the Improved Barkskin talent, and heroes who chose to equip Mail or Plate had their choice essentially nullified by that one talent alone. To put that into perspective, a single talent was destroying the difference between armor classes. Worse, it only made that difference for the heroes who knew the talent existed and chose it. That meant that if a player--usually a new player--didn’t know about this enigmatic talent, they were at an extreme disadvantage.

 

Having hidden talents that give an immense power boost relative to other talents offers nothing of value to the experience; it punishes less experienced heroes unfairly. But more fundamentally, it’s a balance problem.

 

Armor types are changing to become more distinct. Damage mitigation will be more appropriately based on the type of armor you wear; Plate armor will grant more physical defense than Cloth armor, and so on (without quirky methods to circumvent it.) Additionally, on a classless server, choosing to wear plate armor will mean something, and cloth will no longer be able to become plate simply by picking a talent. The difference between armor values will be apparent, meaningful, and the gap in damage reduction will not be so large that casters are feeling forced to equip Plate. Heroes can choose their armor type based on what they want to accomplish with it.



Changes:

  • The Armor of all Cloth items has been increased by 160%
  • The armor of all Leather items has been increased by 130%
  • The Armor of all Mail items has been increased by 20%
  • Moonkin Form now increases armor contribution from cloth and leather items by 65%.
  • Improved Moonkin Form now increases armor by 10/20/30%, down from 14/27/40%.

  • Survival of the Fittest armor gain changed to 4/8/12%, down from 10/20/30%.

  • Mark of the Wild armor has been decreased by 20%.

  • Inner Fire armor has been decreased by 30%.

  • Devotion Aura armor has been decreased by 30%.

  • Demon Skin and Demon Armor armor has been decreased by 50%.

  • Frost Armor and Ice Armor armor has been decreased by 50%.

  • Thick Hide now gives 4/8/12% armor.

  • Metamorphosis now increases armor contribution from cloth and leather items by 130%.

  • Improved Tree of Life now increases armor contribution from cloth and leather items by 30/60/90%.

 

This will be the beginning of a trend to look at balance as ‘power-per-point’ and relative power. As Ascension moves forward, talents will become more comparable in both their cost and the power they grant: to have all talents comparable in strength, rather than a few that are so good that you MUST pick them, and others that are so bad they never get picked.

 

With talents like Improved Barkskin providing so much value, it’s really not a question of whether you want to pick it: you have to pick it, or you’re at an extreme disadvantage. These “non-choice” talents, and the idea of false choices in general. The balance on Ascension is evolving to a state where rather than being obligated to pick certain strong talents regardless of your build, every choice you make will become just that--a choice; a sacrifice of one valuable perk to obtain another, comparably valuable perk. In that way, your builds can continue to be personal, unique, and meaningful based on your individual preferences.



Mystic Enchants Stacking Limited to 3

 

One of Ascension’s most defining features is the Mystic Enchantment system: by expending Mystic Orbs and Runes, players can see exponential power increases in their character via enchantments that boost certain abilities, talents, and spells. These enchantments allow players precision control of their build, creating meaningful choices and the chance for Heroes to tackle the challenges of Ascension in their own way. They add another layer of customization to character building, and allow players unique, personal choices even inside of more general specs such as ‘Ranged’, ‘Shadow’, or ‘Frost’. They are essential for allowing players create their personal hero, and play the game the way they want to play.

 

Over time, something remarkable has become increasingly clear: balancing Mystic Enchantments is really hard! With over a thousand Mystic Enchantments currently in the game, being able to stack so much exponential power onto one ability makes Ascension fundamentally impossible to balance.

 

Although it had its benefits, the result of a 5 stack enchant system was the inability to make effective balance changes, exponential power gaps between old and new players, and imbalanced PvP. This was a crippling foundational design.

 

To rectify this issue, the stacking limit of Mystic Enchantments is changing from a maximum of 5 to a maximum of 3.

 

Three of the Same Name, and That’s All

 

This change has been phenomenal on our Season 2 realm, Bloodscalp. There, you can see more engaging PvP, a wider variety of player builds, and the ability for effective balance changes.

 

Mystic Enhancements are becoming a modest butmeaningful addition to a player’s build--a method for players to distinguish themselves from others, and cement their identity through their spec. Rather than being the foundation of a player’s power for a build, Mystic Enchantments are shifting to serve as tools to refine your build: the build you want to play. With the Mystic Enchantment Stack Cap down to 3, you'll see a lot fewer builds that just stack Mystic Enchantments that affect one spell, and a lot more specialized, unique, personal builds.

 

The 3 Stacking Enchant overhaul is the first step towards reducing the overall sheer power that Mystic Enchantments provide to builds. While Mystic Enchantments will still play an important role on Ascension, the overall impact they have on player power will be shifting from ‘intense’ to a more moderate level. Moving forward, you’ll see outlier enchantments that are extremely powerful relative to others will be brought more in line. Creating an environment where there is less of a power gap between the newest and the oldest players.

 

Mystic Enchantment General Changes

 

In line with your new found ability to test a variety of builds, there are a myriad of changes coming to the Mystic Enchantment system to allow players more opportunity to find and apply Mystic Enchantments. These changes are intended to encourage active-gameplay, creativity, lessen the time it takes to complete a build, allowing you to experiment with the full capabilities of your fully-realized specs.

 

This one is better explained in list format, so here’s that list:

 

    1. The Drop/Roll Chance of Legendary Mystic Enchantments has been Increased by 200%

    2. The cost of rolling Mystic Enchantments with Gold has been reduced by 15%

    3. Increased Mystic Enchantment experience gain by 200%

    4. Upon reaching level cap, heroes will receive starter Mystic Runes via Mail

    5. Added tutorial systems to assist new heroes in learning the Mystic Enchantment System   

    6. ...and more in the Future!

      1. Changes to Call Boards to include Mystic Runes as a prize

      2. Changing Mystic Rune costs to scale with i-Level



Raid Retuning Overhaul

 

With the above changes coming, there’s no question that Ascension raids will need a bit of re-tuning. As with any change to a core mechanic, the branches of the game will need to adapt to the shift that the trunk has made.

 

An Apt Image

 

As the foundations of Mystic Enchantments and Armor Values change, the basis on which raids are balanced will shift as well. ALL raids will actively be rebalanced, and continually adjusted as needed, in accordance with the other core changes made.

 

That’s all for today, Heroes! We hope you’re excited for the changes, and we’ll see you out on the battlefield.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Comments (9)

Massive Updates to Bloodscalp are Live!

 

A Change in the Wind
Updates and Changes to Bloodscalp!

 

Heroes!

 

We hope you’ve all been having a blast with Ascension’s second season: Gladiator’s Gauntlet. Whether you’ve made it to 60, or are enjoying leveling, whether you’re a Protector or an Outlaw, and whether you’ve leapt into the arena or are still gathering your gear, we hope you’re enjoying Season 2!

 

Over the past few days, we’ve made a few MASSIVE updates to our seasonal realm. Although we’ve announced them individually in tweets, we wanted to compile them here for players who missed them, or who wanted more details. Below you’ll find the slew of changes we’ve made during the past five days to Ascension Season 2! We hope you enjoy them.

 

Mystic Enchants Stack to Three, Down from Five

 

Mystic Enchantments are a huge part of Ascension; they add another layer of customization to heroes, and allow players to mold their characters exactly how they’d like them to be. Through the Mystic Enchantment system, players can acutely decide which of their abilities they’d like to improve--which abilities they favor, and which they want to be the core of their kit. The system is truly one of Ascension’s staples.

 

However, at the moment, it isn’t operating how we’d like it to. Rather than using Mystic Enchantments to improve the abilities they use most often, many players look for the strongest ability that has the most enchantments affecting it, and stack those enchantments to create a sort of ‘one-trick-pony’ hero. Rather than looking at the skills they want, players are looking for the enchantments they want. This leads to players settling into a few strong builds, playing them to death, and seeing other people doing the same. The root of this problem is just how strong stacking Mystic Enchantments can be. So we’re tuning it down.

 

They Stack to 3 Now

 

Now, on Bloodscalp, you can have a maximum of three Mystic Enchantments of the same name on your gear at a time. That’s it: three. With this change in, we expect to see a lot more build diversity; rather than relying on Mystic Enchantments for strength, more potential will come from player’s individual choices--the skills and spells they pick, and which of those abilities they enhance with RE’s. Essentially, enchantments now exist to compliment your build, rather than define it.

 

The Karma System Overhaul

 

Originally, a little bit of Criminal Intent and a few player kills was all it took for a Hero to fall into the ranks of “Outlaw”, and incur the consequences--good and bad--that came with it. This was well known to veterans, however new players to Ascension weren’t entirely aware of just what they were getting themselves into. It only took a few player kills to become Unfriendly with [The Law], and as anyone from Season 1 knows, earning their respect again after a fall from grace is a tough challenge. We recently made a few drastic changes to the Karma system on Bloodscalp to allow players to toy with Free for All PvP without being severely punished for experimenting:

 

First, becoming Unfriendly with The Law from Neutral will now take significantly more kills. If a player is being nasty to you, or if you really, really want that ore node, you’ll be able to flip on Criminal Intent and make a few sneaky kills without [The Law] bringing judgment down too harshly on you.

 

Second, we fixed a lot of Safe Zone issues and Guard behavior with regards to Karma. You should see both working a lot more smoothly now.

 

META Changing Balance Updates

 

Our Balance Team has been working hard on a few changes aimed specifically at Bloodscalp with the intention of limiting high-burst potential--both damage and healing--and the amount of Passive Sustain players can have. Our goal is to get PvP into a smoother ebb and flow--to make combat more reminiscent of a grueling, hard-fought battle, rather than bursty fights with Health Bars bouncing from zero to full and back again.

 

You can see a full list of balance changes, and a greater description, on our Forum thread right here:

 

http://project-ascension.com/forum/index.php?/topic/10522-season-2-balance-specific-changes/

 

First-Class Experimental Teleporters

 

Ever dream of parachuting down into the middle of battle, landing in the fray of combat unexpectedly and decemating your foes? So have we: so we built First-Class Experimental Teleporters.

 

Available in Goblin Cities, these suckers will instantly skydrop you into one of several Zones at the push of a button, letting players skip travel time to remote zones and instead jump straight into the action--or fall, as the case may be. Whether you need to get to Silithus or Winterspring, Gurubashi or the Plaguelands, this is the way to get there.

 

It’s Falling, with Style!

 

First-Class Experimental Teleporters are live on Bloodscalp, so if you need to get somewhere in a hurry, click a button, and prepare for liftoff.

 

Booty Bay Points of Interest

 

With Booty Bay functioning as the capital of the Outlaws, we figured it was high time we make things there easier to find. There are so many levels, boats, and bridges that sometimes the town gets a little confusing. No longer! We’ve given the Booty Bay Guards an overhaul to make them just as useful as guards in the faction capitals. Now, you’ll be able to use the Booty Bay Bruisers as your guides to the city! If you’re ever lost in the riggings, find a guard and ask for some help. They’ll be happy to point you in the right direction.

 

Resurrecting in the Closest Town on Death

 

Nobody likes being camped: whether it’s by a group, or a higher-level player, or an experienced veteran, on High-Risk, dying is too big of a deal to let it happen more than once. Previously, our escape mechanism was a “Teleport to Major City” option that appeared above your character after death. This button allowed you to warp to your faction’s capital while dead, preventing further ganks, and securing your gear, for the low price of a full repair bill: chump change, compared to replacing an epic.

 

However, in the middle of a farming session, teleporting halfway across the world, or to another continent, might be more inconvenient than risking your gear again--or at least it might seem more inconvenient. Which means you might risk it only to be ganked again and lose another piece.

 

You know what doesn’t seem inconvenient? Teleporting to the nearest town instead.

 

Nope on Out of There

 

We recently introduced a change on Bloodscalp that lets players teleport to the nearest safe zone / town upon death, allowing players to get a breath of fresh air from ganks without having to travel all the way back to the zone they were in from a capital city. This way, you can rest, re-buff, and head back out into the action with less travel time, and less delay. Don’t let death keep you down, heroes--stand up, and try again!

 

Zul’Gurub Release and ZG Gear Drop In-World

 

The Blood God rises, heroes, and he’s out for… well, blood. Zul’Gurub has released on Bloodscalp, and with it, ZG gear has been added to world-mob loot tables! Get ready to dive into an updated and re-written Zul’gurub, and face Hakkar like never before.

 

Mildly Historically Accurate

 

You can check out the full article on Bloodscalp’s Zul’Gurub release right here:

 

https://project-ascension.com/news/view/129

 

Sub-Level 55 Quest Item Party Loot

 

Leveling with friends is fun. Making friends while you level, and creating a group is fun. But you know what isn’t fun? Trying to complete a quest when only one item can be looted by a party member at once.

 

We want players to group with each other--make friends, form alliances, and create bonds. Playing with others and meeting new people is one of the core important parts of an MMORPG. When players have to compete for quest items, it discourages that. For that reason, we’ve turned on Party Loot for all quest items under level 55. With this change, we hope to promote grouping--players banning together to fight ambushes, Protectors teaming up to quest and fight Outlaws, Outlaws grouping up to quest and ambush Protectors, and overall encourage more interaction between players. If heroes don’t have to compete for quest loot, there’s a higher chance they’ll group up.

 

We like that. So party-loot is on.

 

Arena NPC’s in Booty Bay

 

With Booty Bay serving as the Outlaw hotspot and major city, and with the season encouraging gladiatorial combat (it is called Gladiator’s Gauntlet, after all) we figured it would be a good idea to add arena NPCs to Booty Bay. Queue up in 2v2’s, 3v3’s, 5v5’s, or even our custom 1v1 Arena Matches and put your gear and spec to the test!

 

Queue with the Big Boys

 

Note as well that players don’t lose gear from Arena matches, making it a great way to test new builds and compete with other players.

 

A Lesser Known Evil

 

By now, heroes, you’ve probably seen and used the Hero’s Call and Warchief’s Command boards: they hand out daily and weekly quests that players can tackle to find other players attempting to do the same.

 

They’re Hard to Miss

 

We’ve added 10 new daily quests to the Call Boards: titled “A Lesser Known Evil”, these quests will appear from time to time alongside familiar dailies for players to challenge themselves with. Get ready for a slew of new quests on the Call Boards!

 

Attention to High Level Intervention Prevention

 

Heroes, you guys are clever. We’re constantly impressed by your craftiness and resourcefulness when it comes to playing on Ascension: but come on! Having your high-level friends help you slaughter players your level is just plain wrong! When you’re level 30, and you’ve got a max level, epic geared ally healing you while you roam Stranglethorn Vale as an unstoppable killing machine, it takes the challenge away from PvP engagements. We think everyone will be happy if we make that not work. So we are.

 

We’ve implemented a system that will prevent high-level players from helping their lower-level friends slaughter lowbies. We’re pretty sure that will make the lowbies happy, and the folks that were doing it say “Yeah, that should probably be that way.”

 

Towns Are Safe

 

Speaking of safe things, towns should probably be on that list. Originally, walking into a town placed you under the protection of guards; if anyone attempted to attack you, guards would rush to your aid. However, this was still a bit lackluster--your PvP flag was still on, so clever grouped players could have a few heroes kite the guards while several others took you out. We made a change to that.

 

Now, entering a town will de-flag you from PvP combat, as long as you are not a criminal or outlaw. When you step into a town, you’ll get a five second buff, marking you as nearly-safe. After five seconds, when the buff expires, your PvP flag will be removed, and you’ll be secure from any threats so long as you stay within the town. Outlaws, of course, are still vulnerable in towns, but this buff should provide neutral players and Protectors a bit of added safety in addition to Guards.

 

Guard Empowerment

 

Speaking of guards, did you know we revamped over 500 guards throughout the world to have enhanced AI when interacting with the Karma System? If you’re an Outlaw, you’d better watch out. You’d better not cry. Why?

 

Guards.


They’ll get you.

 

That’s it for our changes, heroes! We hope you’re enjoying the season, and keep an eye out for more changes to Bloodscalp coming soon.

 

 

 

 

Check out everything you need to know about Season 2 with the Ascension Seasonal Overview video!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Blood for the Blood God!

 

The Blood God Rises

Zul’Gurub Releases on Bloodscalp

 

Heroes,

 

Ancient drums echo in the heart of Stranglethorn Vale. The Gurubashi trolls seek to resurrect a fallen God. From the ruined city of Zul’gurub, a sinister force awakens--it falls to you, heroes,  to stop it.

 

Zul’gurub opens on Bloodscalp at 18:00 server time!

 

Enter the once proud capital of the Gurubashi Empire as you gather new gear, overcome obstacles, and take down bosses in Bloodscalp’s first raid! Zul’gurub will release with both a 10 and 25 man, so gather up your friends and get ready to be welcome’d to the jungle.

 

Additionally, we’ve updated and rewritten Zul’Gurub with this release, so veterans and newcomers alike can expect a more fluid experience than ever before

 

Zul’Gurub will open on Bloodscalp at 18:00 server time. Additionally, with this release, Zul’Gurub gear will become available as drops in the open world on Bloodscalp. We will also be introducing the first set of Legacy PvP Gear!

 

Get ready, heroes, and we’ll see you in Stranglethorn!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Check out everything you need to know about Season 2 with the Seasonal Overview!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Season 2 Begins Next Friday!

 

‘Tis the Season

The Countdown to Season 2 is On!

 

Heroes,

 

The wait for Season 2 is nearly over, and we’re not going to waste any time. Ascension Season 2 begins Friday, December 14th. With it, we’re breaking out some of our biggest changes ever, and we hope you’re ready for an incredible High-Risk experience. This article will get you up to speed on everything you need to know before Season 2 begins, and this is a season you don’t want to miss.

 

  • World Event System

  • Call Boards

  • Wildcard Mode

  • i-level Based World Drop Overhaul

  • The Gurubashi Blood Bowl

  • Seasonal Challenge Overhaul

  • Character Transfers to BOTH Legacy Realms

 

Get ready to embrace your inner gladiator, heroes, because Season 2 is all about claiming glory--making a name for yourself, and decimating the competition. This season, we’ve got a ton of different ways to make yourself known: from unique titles, to the challenge system to world first accomplishments announced in chat. Additionally, it’s worth noting that Season 2 is our opportunity to try out new systems, and we plan on moving them to the Legacy Realms if they work out well.

 

Let’s dive in.




World Event System

 

We’re introducing a brand new World Event system with the release of Season 2. These events range from custom World Bosses, to monsters in an area dropping [Mystic Orb Shards] and bonus loot, to Plagued Undead bursting from the corpses of slain Scarlet Warriors when slain.

 

Essentially, when you’re wandering the world, you may just see a message pop up declaring that an Event is active.That’s your queue to get a move on--world events provide bonus loot and more when completed. You might find yourself rushing to the shores of Azshara to slay Naga, or find that Furbolgs have perfected a new type of Firewater and are running amok with it: we’ve got dozens of completely custom world events, and more than the bonus loot, each one offers its own fun and surprises.

 

World Events create a reason for players to move to the same zone: chasing treasures and bonus rewards, players will have to contend with others as they make friends, take down foes, and fight for their lives and gear to complete epic objectives.

 

Call Boards

 

Quests Call to you, Heroes

 

The Heroes Call and Warchief’s Command boards are two new quest-boards we’re introducing in Season 2. They’re here to make your life amazing. Every single day, these Call Boards rotate quests, sending hoards of players flocking to single zones to complete dailies, dungeons, raids, and even slaying Faction Leaders. Completing these quests will shower you with [Mystic Orbs], and our goal is to make the seasonal Call Boards the best possible way for players to collect them. We’re changing the fundamentals to make sure that the best way to get [Mystic Orbs] is also the most fun and varied. So rather than running a single dungeon to death, head to the Call Boards, and pick yourself up a few quests.

 

The Warchief Requires Aid!

 

But be careful, Heroes: with so many players after the same objectives, expect a treacherous time trying to complete your quests without getting slain by other players. Unless, of course, you’re the hunter.

 

The Hero’s Call and Warchief’s Command Boards will feature the following types of quests:

 

  • Daily Dungeon

  • Daily Battleground

  • Daily World Elite

  • Weekly Siege (Faction Leader Kill Quests)

  • Weekly Raid

  • Weekly World Boss

  • Seasonal Challenge Quests

    • Each bracket [20, 30, 40, 50, 60] will have an optional challenge quest that will factor into your seasonal participation and give you some level appropriate gear.

 

Rewards:

  • Mystic Orbs

  • Spoils of War Chest (Change to Contain Raid Epics)

 

Wildcard Mode

 

Looking for a new way to level a character?

 

Wildcard Mode is a brand new optional way to level your character-- rather than choosing your abilities, every single ability your Hero has will be randomly assigned as you level. It’s Ascension ARAM! Wildcard Heroes will have no choice of what abilities they’re assigned, and no way to reset their spells at all. You get what you roll, and you make it work. Although talents and stat points can be chosen normally, the spells and abilities your Hero has are at the mercy of random chance. So take a deep breath, and turn in that last quest!

 

Wildcard Mode will provide an incredible challenge to players who seek it. We hope it will entice newcomers and veterans alike to really embrace the chaos, and see just how far they can get. Can you conquer your foes with an entirely random set of abilities? Will you make it to 60? Only you can say, and if you succeed, some epic rewards await you!



High-Risk High Reward: i-level World Drop Overhaul

Wearing better gear out in the open world now guarantees you better loot from monsters: the i-level based world drop system is here for Season 2!

 

With the release of this new system, players who take the risk of wearing stronger gear out into the world will be rewarded with guaranteed better loot from monsters. It works like this: the better gear you wear out into the world--that is, the higher the i-level--the better Loot Templates you unlock from monsters. So, for example, if you’re wearing a full set of Blackwing Lair gear while bashing demon face at The Tainted Scar, you’ll be getting drops from a better template than someone doing the same thing in Dungeon Blues.

 

Whether you’re slaying monsters or hunting players, the gear you find in the open world is now better when you wear better gear. If you’re geared to the teeth, you’ll be getting much better loot while tackling challenging monsters. By the same token, if you’re out for blood, the players you’re looking to slay will have better gear on as well. We hope this system encourages players to wear their best out into the world, risking high i-level gear for a chance at incredible treasures.



The Gurubashi Blood Bowl

 

Calling all Gladiators: the Gurubashi Blood Bowl is here!

 

The Event be Startin’, Mon!

 

We’ve got a new event this season for Heroes who really want to test their mettle: the Gurubashi Blood Bowl. Every so often, an announcement will ring out across the land calling competitors to Gurubashi Arena. Once the brawl begins, step into the arena to receive the Gurubashi Gladiator buff. As long as you stay inside the Gurubashi Arena, you’ll get [Mystic Orb Shards] for slaying other players. With each player you slay, you’ll get another stack of the buff. For every stack you have, you net even more orb shards from player kills. Stack it up as high as you can, and receive massive amounts of shards!

 

But be warned, heroes: if you leave the arena for any reason, voluntary or forced, your stacks will be reset to 0. Stay strong, and don’t get slain!

 

Additionally, the Blood Bowl is a competition: the hero inside of the arena with the most stacks of the Gurubashi Gladiator buff will receive a chest that only they can open, filled with loot, gear, and other prizes. It pays to be the champ!

 

As a final note: we’ve outfitted the Gurubashi Arena with banks, Arena Queues, and vendors to make it a hub for players who love combat. Although the inside of the arena is a blood bath, the area around the arena is a Sanctuary, meaning players can’t attack each other as long as they’re outside the ring, so feel free to equip some really great gear before diving into the Blood Bowl!

 

Just be careful on the walk there--the rest of Stranglethorn is fair game!

 

Seasonal Challenge Overhaul

Looking for more challenge in your season? Wish you had some way to stand out in the crowd? Want some epic cosmetics and mounts to deck out your Hero? We’ve got you covered with the Seasonal Challenge Overhaul.

 

The New Seasonal Collection

 

The Seasonal Challenge Overhaul is massive. It’s a brand new system of challenges that will allow players to claim glory, and stand out amongst their peers. The Challenge overhaul introduces aslew of brand new custom achievements and accomplishments for players to undertake as they explore Season 2. Ranging from World Firsts to PvP accomplishments, completing certain challenges throughout the season will grant you an Achievement, along with other possible rewards: for example, being the first player to max out First Aid will net you a fancy title. Similarly, slaying enough players in the Blood Bowl will get you an achievement, as will killing players in World PvP.

 

Complete Challenges, Fill up the Bar, and Claim the Rewards!

 

With each challenge you complete, you’ll fill up the Challenge Bar. Fill it up enough, and you’ll receive Seasonal Points. Seasonal Points can be spent on exclusive cosmetics, mounts, and other items in the Vanity store.

 

For some heroes, however, the biggest reward might be the glory, and if that’s you, we’ve got some good news: world first achievements will be actively announced to the entire server when completed. Many of the World First achievements will be accompanied by exclusive titles, which can be worn throughout the season and taken back to the main realms once the season has ended, so if fame and accolades are your game, step into the ring, and try your hand at World First achievements!

 

Character Transfers to Both Legacy Realms

Finally, rest assured that the adventure doesn’t end with the Season: characters from the Seasonal Realms will find new homes on our legacy ones, Andorhal and Laughing Skull. However, instead of having to choose their new home, characters from Season 2 will transfer to both Legacy Realms when the season ends. Season 2 Heroes will be able to continue their adventure wherever they wish, and even on both realms if they choose to.

 

We hope you’re excited for Season 2, heroes. Mark your calendars for December 14th, and start sharpening those swords: the Gladiator’s Gauntlet is just about on!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Snatch Up NEW PvP Gear!

 

Marshal Yourselves for Battle!
New Marshal and Field Marshal Epic PvP Gear Released!

 

Heroes!

 

As raiders delve deeper into Ahn’Qiraj, collecting ancient treasures and reaching new heights of power, we want to make sure our PvP-focused players aren’t left behind. We know some of you care only for the thrill of the fight, testing your skills and builds against other players in Battlegrounds or in the open world: that’s why we’re happy to announce the next level of PvP gear--the Mashal and Field Marshal epic gear sets.

 

The Marshal and Field Marshal epic PvP sets are now available from vendors in the Champion’s Hall and the Hall of Legends. Available for purchase with honor, players who live for Call to Arms weekends and Battlegrounds now have a way to keep pace with Raiders as they strive for better and better gear. Keep in mind, too, that you can mix and match gear from different sets, allowing you to access multiple set bonuses. Or, if you prefer, collect one complete set for the final 6 piece set bonus.

 

Good luck on the battlefield, heroes!

 

 

 

 

 

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