Lead Combat Designer Brian Holinka is responsible for everything in WoW where we punch, heal, or build threat with our characters. In addition to class design, he is also responsible for PvP. Patch 9.1 is all about PvP and will be one of the biggest PvP updates in a long time.

So it makes sense to ask the developers about the PvP changes with 9.1. Recently, Holinka spent about an hour answering questions from PvP veteran Venruki. The most interesting statements from the conversation can be found below.

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PvP Talents

  • PvP is a completely different kind of game compared to PvE. In PvP there is a lot to watch out for, for example Area Denial.
  • With all the changes, PvP always feels fresh at the beginning of an expansion.
  • PvP talents were introduced to bring some change back into PvP (new toys that players have to use to piece together the meta puzzle).
  • The upcoming patch will change talents that performed too well or were considered mandatory talents. Patch 9.1 changes many PvP talents in general.

More healing debuffs with patch 9.1

  • The point behind this is to make the game more offensive and less defensive (keyword dampening).
  • In 3v3, a kill is supposed to feel hard, but get easier as time goes on. This is the purpose behind the additional healing debuffs with patch 9.1
  • For a 3v3 match, aim for around three to five minutes.


  • The developers see the problem that some DpS spec heals more than the healer himself. For some classes, off-healing is cool, and for some it's part of the spec's defensive toolkit.
  • Over the next few weeks, the developers plan to take a closer look at this problem.
  • Characters are supposed to die in PvP ... They want to make the game more deadly rather than more defensive.

Passive Healing

  • The devs can always mitigate Slime's Frictionless Coating or Sharpened Instincts later, but currently that's not the plan.

Equipping in PvP

  • The developers are happy with the PvP trader.
  • The item level imbalance in PvP gear is not yet addressed in patch 9.1, but will likely be addressed in patch 9.1.5.
  • People are aware of the item level difference betweenArena ratings. Maybe an item level difference of three instead of six item levels won't feel so bad.
  • The developers see this as a problem that comes up mostly between the middle and end of the Season.

Catch-Up for Conquest Points

  • Twinks should not accumulate points significantly slower than the main.
  • Weekly events for more conquest points could be a good idea, possibly implemented in patch 9.1.5 if the problem gets bigger.
  • Regardless, try to introduce the conquest points catch-up as naturally as possible instead of players having to hope for RBG or said events.

Solo Queue

  • The biggest concern about a solo queue is group composition. Say two rogues sign up and one gets into an RMP comp (with mage and priest) and the other with another rogue as well as a tank druid, that's not good.
  • They're definitely thinking about it though, maybe as a PvP brawl first.
  • The developers understand that players just want to queer for Arena in between.
  • An upgrade to the LFG tool would be a solution to this problem.

Cross-player cues

  • The developers know that players want this. However, they want to find a way to balance Horde and Alliance and still play with your friends.

3v3 and rewards

  • 2v2 is by far the most popular bracket.
  • They don't want to give out special gladiator titles for 2v2, but maybe something else. This problem is not a high priority at the moment though.
  • For RBGs, there is a problem with the number of players and titles.
  • RBGs are a very efficient way to get conquest and honor.
  • The developers have already thought about a 6v6 RBG. But for that, a separate game mode would have to be developed. Holinka would rather give the 10v10 mode the 6v6 variant in this case.

PvP Season 1

  • The inflation of ratings is of course due to the length of Season 1.
  • The developers don't like the idea of rating reduction over time. People shouldn't be penalized for taking a vacation or taking care of a family member.
  • The problem with having two PvP seasons per raid tier was that the gear in the first PvP season was worse than the raid gear, but the gear in the second season was better than the raid gear.


  • One solution to the problem of excessive cooldowns would be to remove those "cooldown-like" buttons.
  • Filler spell attacks should then be buffed rather than cooldowns.

Mind Control Bugs

  • The developers are spending a lot of time trying to fix this bug.
  • They know it's a problem and are unhappy with it.
  • It turns out to be very difficult to reproduce and fix the bug.


  • You look closely at feedback on the official forums and on Twitter (@warcraftdevs).

Source: wowhead.comSupport

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