Spell batching in classic

In not here to argue the merit or sins of spell batching in classic wow, however something about it in this classic WoW feels off a bit.

This has lead me down the rabbit hole in a couple of different ideas on what may be happening in classic.

As an outside observer and a student of history we know that vanilla ran in a different kind of server hardware architecture and additionally ran in its own bespoke system.

Classic is not like this; it’s very much likely to be a modular system like Microsoft Azur, a very scalable and robust system that has some great advantage, but all things are not equal.

Many things have changed server hardware and system side; back in actual Vanilla Blizzard potentially had a few things actually run client side because distributed computing was a thing back in those days. (Thank you Microsoft Windows NT servers)

Does not mean they did this but it’s very possible and allegedly this was so until some time early TBC when a certain warrior was hacking his client to alter his auto attack speed to produce more swings and more rage as a result.

It’s such a subtle hack that if he had never been competing in top end arena then odds are would never have been detected.

Needless to say he did get busted and things were altered a bit, but I never noticed any player side effects in TBC as a result of their security changes.

Fast forward to Wrath, here again we were still using “Vanilla batching” and everything was fine; broadband connection was now common place and yet the game mechanically felt exactly as it always had since vanilla.

Point is Vanilla to Wrath felt EXACTLY the same, and always felt good.

By the time wrath was launched internet connection speeds for most players was considered excellent and yet the game felt the same.

Fast forward again to cata, New batching system (more faster channels), and the game played roughly the same.

In all of those years never did I ever observe the kind of behavior displayed by spell batching as I see in classic wow, nor did it behave this way in TBC or Wrath. (Not talking about 2 mages sheeping each other or two rogues sapping each other) Additionally I never observed leeway act as it does in classic wow back in Vanilla, TBC or Wrath.

I strongly believe that ends are what is important here and arbitrary numbers like 400 ms batches are meaningless, and the only thing that really matters is mirroring the original game.

Do you need another reference point? Perhaps a new and reliable source or two?

Start up a new TBC or wrath of the Litch king server and see how it feels and plays.

PLEASE trust your memory of a class you the developer once played. Your muscle memory will not lie too you in the way the numbers and hardware changes can.

Please consider this thought experiment because quality game play is of the highest importance to everyone; including you all at Blizzard.



If you don’t bother reading that post, here’s the screenshots I made.

Vanilla leeway, active combat, which means it’s unlikely to even be max range:


Classic leeway, max range:


They’re nearly identical.

Actually read your post and as we don’t always agree on things I still value your input.

Once I am on a PC later I’ll check out the screen shots.

Do you have more? Post em if you got em.

This post reference is to my own interaction as a hunter vs melee.

I have noticed some things about leeway that are in classic but may not be accurate, but vanilla hunter video is rare because it’s often not that exciting to watch.

Looked at your pictures, and indeed Tuaren hit box reach is a known thing, the “Leeway” photo in "classic 2019 is indeed at a further distance, maybe 2 or 3 yards.

Not a whole lot, but it does make a difference.

Well I’m glad I’m not the only one who noticed things are off. It’s definitely very, very subtly different and having a tough time nailing down exactly what. Thank you for looking into this. Please keep us posted.


I think the difference in play is the back port and spell batching seems to not be ejecting failed attacks from the queue. That may also be attributable to how the Legion engine handles the data.


Yeah this is the worst part of it. Getting off a CC in time to be hit anyways by the CC’d mob is not something that happened all the time in vanillia.


From what I understand it did take place in early vanilla but was fixed in patch 1.10 (actual vanilla) For example:"Creatures will no longer get one hit on a rogue before cheap shot takes effect. "

Some how their Modern wow code does not like all the old bug fixes, or simply never had any of the bug fixes because I will assume some bug fixes were not data side.


Simultaneous CCing happened even through TBC but the window was MUCH tighter (I’m talking ~50MS or less). It was less tight in Vanilla, but nowhere near what is happening right now.


according to Blizzard it was 400 all the way till cata…

Thing is I bet that’s not the whole story. Its highly suspect that the complete cycle was 400ms back in vanilla and then there is the whole thing that we know is likely true, blizzard back then did some stuff client side…

Because of that it’s very possible that with processes taking place client side that the game play was indeed better on a 400 ms loop because the client would just sync every 400 ms.

However, however if that’s the case then Blizzard cant just use a 400 ms batch “artificially” because it’s impossible to make that feel correct, and I don’t think you can doing it in a modern wow kinda way…

Tuning is needed to make the game play correctly.


Yeah I’m inclined to agree with you on all of that. I don’t trust Blizzard’s statements on the game anymore. Personally, I think the decision to emulate 1.12 on Legion, before hastily porting it all to BFA, rather than build a bnet compatible API that works with the true 1.12 patch, was a massive, largely unrectifiable mistake. Blizzard has been in damage control mode ever since the launch.


This would explain alot.

I have been doing my best to reverse engineer the situation in a way that makes sense, unfortunately Blizzard tends to not make sense any more…

Dude I would take a 1.12 client over this mess running on an AUTHENTIC server, not a “modern wow server with classic code” nonsense, because at least with the authentic server I know darn right it works…

Heck I would put up with all the hax that people abuse on the old client; not like they’re stopping the people who’re hacking now any way.


Not only does the artificial spell batching they put in feel awful but its also founded countless numbers of new bugs


Maybe; have a look at the “Vanilla” patch notes.

Think about twiddle a moment, there is no way Blizzard of old made every single patch of the old game data side.

So because many big fixes were fixing the server or the client or net code or some interaction, then when they extracted the data and translated it to “modern wow” the effectively left out a slew of bug fixes that are simply not installed.

I feel it was a long road for them to use the modern engine, and I can understand the desire, but it can only work out if they put in some high quality effort to fix all the bugs that resurfaced due to this modern WoW client and server.

Additionally the engine and artificially implemented batching as you noted are also likely to blame for several problems.


Is this crap why, a rogue was able to gouge me the other day (he had imp gouge talent because it lasted about 6 seconds) and I was stunlocked basically the entire time even though he got off 2 white swings and an eviscerate? I assumed he had got me with kidney shot at first and I tried to trinket but I was confused when it didn’t work. Looked at my debuffs and was surprised to see gouge, which I immediately Berserker Raged out of.

After the fight I confirmed it in my combat logs too. The CC stuff that is supposed to break on damage, not doing so, is really really annoying. I feel for rogues with their vanish being bugged, but I wish we could get all of these issues resolved once and for all so the game can play like it is supposed to.


Yup, and it appears to be all forms of break on damage CC or break early when damaged CC just don’t break like they ought too.

I have also noticed the maximum possible durations appear to be getting clipped by about 1/2 second in some situations, leading me to think the batching system is a real problem.

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Have you tried having this discussion in general, trade or guild chat? The fanboys will come out of the woodwork to defend Blizzards honor and you will be trolled into oblivion for even hypothetically mentioning connecting to a private server.

That being said, I otherwise whole heartedly agree with your post.

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General discussion is for lulz, anything more and we’re expecting too much. =)

Spell batching is what causes bugs like the 2handed hand of justice macro one.

Yup, and execute to be delayed by 400 additional milliseconds.