Buff cap and hidden auras

Buffs are getting pushed off at well below 32 buffs. My hypothesis is that there are hidden aura buffs from enchants, talents, and gear. From what I’ve read in original patch notes the hidden aura buffs were fixed to no longer count as a buff slot, but in Classic WoW they currently are.

This has major impacts on raiding, specifically high end raiding. Druids are already being told they can’t use their healing over time spells. Hybrid specs that provide a crit aura are far less useful with taking a buff slot. Consuming and world buffing, like it or not, is a reason many people continue to play the end game.

Without knowing what these hidden auras are, it’s impossible to see and plan for what talents/buffs/spells/gear/enchants you should and shouldn’t be using. If Classic WOW decided to use 16 debuff slots instead of the 8, shouldn’t the same line of thinking being applied to removing the hidden auras as counting as buff slots? I believe the reasoning for the 16 debuff slots was that it was just a technical issue that didn’t allow it back in original WOW.


Thank you for the report! Since you posted this, we’ve been investigating, and following the community discussion around buff limits and missing hit chance bonuses, so I wanted to take a few minutes to post about this, and clarify what’s going on. It turns out that there are three related issues here, which made it hard to track down exactly which reports are related to which issue.

To make sense of this, I first want to talk about auras. Auras are the system that tracks persistent effects on your character, such as changes to their stats, health, critical strike chance, etc. Auras are actually divided into three distinct categories: helpful, harmful, and passive. Players are most familiar with the “16 debuff limit” which refers to the 16 available harmful aura slots. There’s a similar bank of 32 “helpful” auras, which includes things like Power Word: Fortitude, Songflower Serenade, or Rallying Cry of the Dragonslayer. And lastly there are passive effects, which include things like racial skill bonuses, or benefits gained from gear.

One confusing distinction is on “benefits from gear.” If a benefit is built into the gear, such as Wyrmhide bracers having “Increases your chance to hit by 2%” then that counts as a Passive aura, and does not consume one of your “buff slots.” However currently gear enchantments like “Greater Stats” count as Helpful auras, and do consume one of your buff slots, even though they have no visible display in your buff frame. Some players have pointed out a suspicious patch note in 1.12.1 referring to making enchantments on gear count as passive, and that clue was incredibly helpful. We found an old entry in our bug-tracking system recording a designer fixing that behavior for Burning Crusade, but the subsequent notes on that bug show that the fix was pushed live in 1.12.1. We followed that lead and did find that change in our data archives, so we’ll develop a fix for that, and mark most of the item enchantments as passive in an upcoming hotfix.

That brings us to the second issue, which is that Passive auras can also reach a limit. The limit is much higher, and we don’t believe it will ever be reached in practice, but while we were investigating these issues, we did find that we were able to reach the Passive aura limit if we did some truly ridiculous behavior, including making the world’s worst talent build. Because of that discovery, and the fact that we’re about to classify item enchantments as passive, we’re going to increase the limit for passive auras. Some of you might be thinking that this limit on passive auras is why you weren’t getting all the +hit bonuses you were entitled to, and at first we thought so too, but the level of ridiculousness needed to actually trip the passive aura limit made us suspicious. It didn’t seem likely enough to explain the number of player reports we were seeing, so we kept digging.

The third issue we found, which actually explains your lost +hit bonuses, is actually a bug in Item Set bonuses. Set bonuses that have the same benefit as item effects are actually overwriting the identical item effect, but only if the set bonus is gained after the matching item is equipped. An example is the Wyrmhide Spaulders, and the Devilsaur Armor Set bonus, which each have an incredible +2% chance to hit. If you equip both pieces of Devilsaur Armor, and then equip the Wyrmhide Spaulders, everything works fine. On the other hand, if you were already wearing the Wyrmhide Spaulders, and then equip the Devilsaur Armor, its set bonus will overwrite the Wyrmhide shoulders bonus. At that point the 2% hit bonus from the Spaulders is gone, and even unequipping the Devilsaur Armor won’t give it back. Only un-equipping and re-equipping the Wyrmhide Spaulders will fix the issue. We think this is actually the source of the +hit bonus issues, and we’re also working on a hotfix for this issue.

I really want to thank everybody who provided detailed examples and evidence because it greatly helped us in tracking these issues down, and we’ll get them all fixed as soon as we can.

Thanks again!


excellent post… I’m excited to hear about the feign death/trap problems :wink:

wink wink nudge nudge


we did find that we were able to reach the Passive aura limit if we did some truly ridiculous behavior, including making the world’s worst talent build

Ok, but, what was this build?

Also thanks, I got word of this yesterday from a guildie and glad to hear it’s already been tracked down and will be resolved soon.


Can we get a response on the Hunter Feign Death + Trap Bug/Druids not getting LotP or Predatory Strikes when shifting using macros?


FINALLY. Also I really suspected this was the case regarding truestrike + devilsaur. Turns out the “buggy” extended character stats addons were right, funnily enough.


Based reply, thanks Bl0zz

I’d also like to add my two cents, with regards to Hunter humanoid tracking of the opposite faction not showing on the mini map in a slightly different color. Right now it’s impossible to differentiate between friendly an unfriendly faction players, and I distinctly remember that this was possible in older versions of wow.

Thanks for clarifying the issue, and commenting on the logic behind the fix! Looks like having a seasoned team investigating can untangle even the worst of spaghetti coding, eh? :d


Thanks for the speedy and well developed response explaining everything! Loving the communication and descriptive updates. Thanks again!


Why is there still no update on the status of feign death?


Love getting to hear about some of the under the hood goings on as well as that things are being worked towards after swift detection.

Thanks team, you rock.


Thank you :blush:

I understand the importance of your post and thank you for following up on this issue, but I, and I’m sure many others, would be extremely interested in this bit of trivial information:

Please, please, do indulge us on what this glorious talent build was. :^)


Great work blizzard!


Wow this is like the best explanation ever.



Is there any way we can get some confirmation as to what versions of these raid bosses we are fighting? Is there ever a chance we can get the unnerfed versions of Vanilla dungeons and bosses released as changes were tracked internally or is the data loss too great?

It’s likely too late for Phase 1 but this is very important to a lot of people for the upcoming raids. I’ve beaten MC and Ony in Classic and there are notable mechanics we noticed were different, missing or de-scaled. The leveling experience is spectacular, the world is gorgeous, the social experience is there but the level high-end 60 portion is worrying a lot of people. If you can provide any info at all that would be wonderful and thank you <3

I just need to say this.

THIS thread has single handedly renewed my faith that Blizzard is one of the greatest game development companies of all time.

No other MMO I have ever played has the talent behind the game to deliver a response to a community on an issue like this like.

You took the time to investigate it, explain the issue in a way we can all understand it, you OWNED up to the the issue, and you gave us faith that you will be fixing it.

This is really incredible work. You guys don’t get enough credit on these forums especially for what you are doing.

Thank you!


The third issue we found, which actually explains your lost +hit bonuses, is actually a bug in Item Set bonuses. Set bonuses that have the same benefit as item effects are actually overwriting the identical item effect, but only if the set bonus is gained after the matching item is equipped.

This is most likely the case, but I don’t believe it’s the ONLY instance of this happening. I’m gnome. For 2nd MC I ran the devilsaur set and was noticing a ton of missed specials, likely from what you described. But half way through that raid I swapped the gloves out to use Edgemasters with 7% hit. I ran the rest of that raid and all of last night’s raid (our 3rd MC clear) with them, and while it was significantly less than using the devilsaur I did still notice a few missed specials throughout the night. PLEASE look into this further! I think you’re on the right track, but there may also be other situations where a similar bug is occurring. Thanks for the update, and I hope everything gets sorted soon!

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I’ve been playing on EverQuest TLP (Classic Style) servers for the last 10 years, and some of you here don’t know how good we have it in WoW. The EverQuest team would have ignored the issues, lied about it, or not even taken the time to investigate it and buried it.

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