Yesterday Public Test Realms became available for everybody.
We are able to test new spell and melee animations, new sets of skills and talents, wardrobe and invasion events.
TL;DR: it was an awful experience.
I’ve tried to start the game right after my installation process allowed to do it. The whole PTR weighs circa 35GB, and I’ve spent 5 hours downloading it in full (and I have very fast internet).
I couldn’t login. All the realms sent me to hell for the first 2 hours. Then finally I entered some waiting queue. And here I am, with an empty character list.
You cannot copy your character at once, first you must create a new 1 level toon.
Then when you try to copy your character, PTR won’t let you do it. Blizzard said: we are aware of the issue, so I went to bed. There was no point to run with the first level toon.
In the early morning I was finally able to copy a pair of toons there, and here’s what we have.
- Wardrobe. It looks nice, it showed all of my previously acquired items. Micromantica has naturally got all the Fashionist new achievements on login – I guess so will do everybody except for maybe a tabard one. You need to acquire only 25 items of every slot, and that number was well exceeded through your previous questing. Each armor slot items and weapon charms are conveniently split by groups. You could also use a filter to see only available items, and you could choose your favorite ones to appear on top of the list.
- The big drawback is that your helmet and cape are on by default. I’m wearing neither at any of my toons, and you can’t get them off in the field – you need to go to the mogging guy now. I hope you must do it only once, not with every new cape or helmet you wear.
- That I couldn’t do. Flight taxi, mounts and teleports stopped working right when I decided to go to mogging guys. Nice, so we’re stuck at Garrisons.
- Before that, I have managed to check out in action my Combat – now Outlaw – Rogue Hedersen. I still need to get the grip of her new abilities and rotation, but oh my god, how cool are all of her new moves! It looks absolutely amazing and wild, and bless you Blizzard animators and artists once again. There are three or four cool swordplay moves and a pair of pistol shots (one is a combo-builder, the other is a finisher). I miss my teleporting step through the shadows, but I have an ranged aggro ability now. Outlaw Rogues are not that bound to melee range now – it seems their saber slashing and pistol shots will not require pressing your nose to enemy’s butt the whole time. I didn’t feel myself weak too. I went to Zorammarsh to test her, and ended up in a raptor nest with 4 or 5 beasts attacking me at once. Even if I killed them one by one with no AoE – it was my second fight and I haven’t learned anything about my rotation yet – I wasn’t even close to die.
- Then I logged in with Micromantica, the Ice Mage and my main. That’s when the transportation was broken and I’ve only revised her spells and talents, not being able to go somewhere from the city. She didn’t change that much. The main thing is that Frostfire bolt is gone, which is a good thing, because I don’t want any fire spells at my Ice Mage or ice spells at my Fire Mage. Ice Nova doesn’t replace Frost Nova now. They are both present, the DPS ability has one stack, and stunning ability has two stacks. All AoE abilities are present, and there’s a talent to enhance your Blizzard to cover more territory and be more powerful – that would be my AoE talent choice. Speaking of talents, I’m very excited about tier one – you could dismiss your elemental for 30% power of certain spells!! My joy is explained easily: I hate pets around my toons.
- Obviously there were no invasions for me, as I couldn’t leave town.
- I’m happy with the wardrobe system
- I’m not very happy that I must go to ethereals to turn off my helmet, cape (and now shoulders too). But it maybe a nice restriction.
- I’m very happy about new fighting animations, it brought much life in gameplay compared only to my excitement about race models improvement in WoD.
- I will eventually learn to play all my classes again, probably run one more LFR with them to put the skill test to extremes. Personally I think that class reboots is a good thing. It brings you back the joy of exploration, learning new abilities and everything. Because your previous stale rotation – you could perform it with your eyes closed, one hand holding a pizza slice. Isn’t it discouraging and boring to go for a kill-me-ten quest and know that you must perform this rotation again? It is for me. I have 15 specs to re-learn and I’m not scared about it, I’m excited. It’s new content too :)
- I’m not happy how PTR went off. It’s basically a demo of launch day, and it shows us that Blizzard learned nothing from their mistakes. There will be queues, disconnects and everything. August, 30 is for hardcore players who will grit their teeth for the ‘first kills’ and ‘first to be 110’ through all the bugs and disconnects. I expect the smooth game not earlier than September, 3 or 5 – that’s the actual launch day.