Have you ever jumped into a shield on Malygos and died anyway?
Jumped into a safe zone on Heigan and still died?
Tried to jump away from Frogger and died?
Well, now I can tell you why!
Simply put, the WoW engine doesn’t update your position until you hit the ground. When you are airborne, as in jumping, the game engine doesn’t know where you are anymore.
Say you walk from point A to point B. Because your feet are always on the ground, the game can accurately map out where you are. But when you jump… it can’t.
So when you jump from point A to point B, the game considers you at point A until you land at point B.
If there is, say, a bunch of green instant death goo that rushes out of the ground at point A, and you’re jumping, the game still thinks you’re at point A. So you get hit with all that damage.
It’s instinct to jumo out of dangerous ground effects. If a large blue circle appears on the ground and starts hurting you, DON’T JUMP! You’ll continue to take damage until you land, so it’s better to just strafe out of harmful effects.
I first got started thinking that there was a mechanic something like this when I first started up my Death Knight.
During my first few forays into solo PvE, I kept getting an error message “Can’t do that while moving.” At the time, I simply thought it an arbitrary restriction to prevent PvP abuse. (Imagine jumping off of LM, then Death Gripping an enemy after you.)
As it turns out, you can use Death Grip while moving, but you cannot use Death Grip while jumping. It was just embarrasing coincidence that I had always tried to use DG while jumping. I like jumping. WEE!
Again, I thought it an arbitrary restriction (see LM example above).
But… well, have you seen this video?
What’s happening there is deceptively simple. The boat at Booty Bay doesn’t have a coordinate position. It’s “in between” area servers, if you will. When a Death Knight attempts to move an enemy onto the boat, the game engine can’t. It simply can’t.
The boat, you see, doesn’t (or rather, didn’t) have positional coordinates. Death grip works by moving a player from one set of coordinates to a new set of coordinates.
But when attempting to move a player from, say, 78:91:33 to ??:??:??, it can’t as the second set of coordinates doesn’t exist. What it does instead is reset the player’s position to 00:00:00.
Which, as you can see from the video, is a place somewhere under the Alterac Mountains.
Long time alliance players may remember when boats would fail to get to where they were going, and hundreds of players would be stranded inexplicably in the middle of Stonetalon. Same thing.
The game fails to update your position, so it resets you to 00:00:00.
This got me thinking. If Death Grip works by moving a player from X to Y, why doesn’t it work while the DK is jumping?
The only reasonable explanation is that a player doesn’t have a position when jumping. Therefore, Death Grip can’t work because of it’s programming.
Whether Blizzard intentionally disabled DG while jumping or if the game engine just does that, I don’t know.
What I do know, now, is why.
And so do you!