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WOW's dual talent specs explained

Max level only, comes with gear manager.

In a Q&A on the official World of Warcraft website, Blizzard's senior game designer Greg Street (better known to players as Ghostcrawler) has explained how the dual talent spec system coming in the next game update will work.

Dual specs will allow players to more easily switch their characters between two character customisation setups - one for raiding and one for player-versus-player, perhaps, or one for healing and one for doing damage.

The option will only be available to players at the maximum level of 80 at first. "We didn't want to burden lower-level players with extra complexity as they're working to level up and learn their class. But if the feature proves popular we might consider expanding it," said Street.

You'll pay a one-time fee to your in-game class trainer to access dual specs; after that, switching between them will be free at any Lexicon of Power in any city.

Alternatively, players with the Inscription profession will be able to create and sell a portable Lexicon of Power that will require a group of players to summon and use anywhere - except during combat, or in Arenas. So, switching roles in the middle of a dungeon is viable, but it might be expensive.

Along with the specs themselves, you'll get dual set-ups for your action bars and Glyphs (spell-modifying customisations) that will switch automatically when you switch spec.

Since switching role often means changing your gear, Blizzard will also add a Gear Manager to the game that will allow easy switching between equippable items - weapons, trinkets, outfits or entire equipment sets.

"We will be launching the feature with just two specs, but depending on how we feel it works out, we might consider additional specs in the future," Street said.

Dual specs will be coming to WOW's public test servers soon, but Blizzard warned that it might not be "immediately available" there with the rest of the next content patch, and the Gear Manager might lag a little behind it.

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Oli Welsh

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Oli was Eurogamer's MMO Editor before a seven-year stint as Editor. He worked here for a colossal 14 years, shaping the website and leading it.

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