We're carefully observing the players' doings during the active content. With both Naxxramas and Eye of Eternity releases we have tried to satisfy all the players and we've often took your needs into consideration. That's why we have decided for Naxxramas to be harder than the original one - or Malygos that was boosted a lot, but finally was nerfed a bit. We know that we'll never find the golden mean and won't satisfy everyone with our changes, but we have always wanted for each encounter to be difficult, but attractive to both hardcore raiders and possible for more casual guilds. It was really hard with Tier 7 content. The bosses had only one version and it was not possible to make the boost perfect for everybody. The situation is getting better at each next content, where we have Heroic versions (in case of ToGC and ICC) and Hard Mode bosses (Ulduar).
1. Ulduar Difficulty
Summarizing the last sentence - increasing boss' difficulty for hardcore PvE players is way easier on Ulduar, because it doesn't affect the "normal" gameplay. We can boost Hard Modes if proven necessary, but the whole encounter in its normal version will stay unmodified. Ulduar is quite difficult raid tech-wise, it's a success to have it scripted properly: then, it'll be a challenge even without boosts. The goal of this content is satisfaction of all groups of raiders that'll find their best difficulty. Hardcore raiders will have challenging Hard Mode bosses, more casual players will face completely working Normal version encounters with values of the first weeks of Ulduar on retail. These are the final terms regarding Ulduar boost:
Ulduar 10-Man is going to be pre-nerf*. No custom changes whatsoever, the same goes for 10-Man Hard Modes.
Ulduar 25 Normal
Just like 10-Man, Ulduar 25-Man is going to be pre-nerf. No changes in mechanics or timers whatsoever, everything is in pre-nerf state. Some encounters, such as Razorscale, will have their HP boosted accordingly, because some bosses didn't have pre-nerf state. Value of HP boost for bosses without pre-nerf state will be analogical to difference between other bosses' pre-nerf and post-nerf state.
Example to make it more clear:
IGNIS THE FURNACE MASTER (has pre-nerf version):
- Post-nerf 25 - 19,5m HP
- Post nerf version has 25,12% HP less than pre-nerf.
- Pre-nerf version 25 - 24,4m HP
- Post-nerf 25 - 12,6m HP
- Boost: 25% HP value (just like Ignis) - 15,75m HP.
- Pre-nerf version 25 - none.
Not every boss is going to have his HP increased that way.
Ulduar 25 Hard Mode
Hard Mode encounters are going to be pre-nerf. Some bosses will have their HP boosted or timers reduced, however we will not change the mechanics.
*Pre-nerf; we should tell you something more it. Pre-nerf values are the values which were implemented by Blizzard and were either pushed to live servers or PTR, but were changed after time (most of them were nerfs). We have a lot of sources regarding these values and we want to use a lot of them to re-create Ulduar.
2. Deadly Boss Mods
It's most likely that we won't announce every change to Ulduar. I can tell you now that we will create our own version of Deadly Boss Mods (DBM) which will contain all changes made by us. The addon will be available for download before 3.1 content launch.
3. Previous content
Eye of Eternity will be reverted back to blizzlike state, such as Obsidian Sanctum. Naxxramas is going to stay as it is. Considering Naxxramas being boosted, we've decided that Reins of the Black Proto-Drake as a reward for Glory of the Raider (25 player) is going to be available at the next content.
4. Wrath of the Lich King Attunements
We have been asked about this a lot of times - so often that I've decided to talk about it here. What's this about? A lot of you asked if it's needed to complete Naxxramas 10/25 in order to enter Ulduar 10/25. In short: do you need achievement for Kel'thuzad 10/25 in order to enter Ulduar 10/25? The answer is NO. You don't need to have any achievement in order to access Ulduar. The attunements would make more sense if we wouldn't buff raids, but with some big changes to Naxxramas (and the fact the boost stays) we have decided not to introduce this system.
5. Ulduar Open Beta Tests
When we finish works on Ulduar, we obviously want to test it through and through, counting crash tests and open tests. We'll open third realm with characters copied from Angrathar and guilds that apply to test Ulduar (test it to help us, not to help their progress) will have access to the Test Realm. The Test Realm will be closed by default and will be open two times a week at evenings (GMT+2). Every guild with access to the tests will have a Game Master present during tests. We'll add vendors with BiS items from 3.0 content. Guilds that are eager to help us can apply to Graal. The date of open tests will be announced in the following days/weeks and all the info will be available on forum and Discord.
6. Ulduar & Furious Gladiator release date
The exact date of new content's release is going to be announced in the promo material (trailer) which we will show you at May 2nd, 2018. Before the promo, we'll post some short presentations regarding changes to Ulduar encounters.
All we can say now is that Ulduar and Furious Gladiator are going to be longer than the current content. We think it's going to be around 6 months, so Call of the Crusade season would be launched in November/December of 2018.