WoW: Battle for Azeroth (8.2 is en route)

fangblackbone wrote:

I mean, how can you call it fine if the bulk of it needed to be reduced by 25-40%. 1-5% is fine tuning and heck I'll grant you even up to 10%. But 40%? Jeebus.

That sounds like somebody made the case that if they want people to actually use these Allied Races they keep making then they need more variety in the level-up game. With level scaling it's easy to create more leveling paths by speeding up the leveling.

They also did slow leveling way down as part of the BFA overhaul. My guess is they weren't 100% sure that level scaling would fix their issues. For the longest time the level-up game was flat-out broken, as there was zero reason to ever do the second half of any zone. Now that they can see how people are progressing under scaling they probably have some room to tune it.

jdzappa wrote:

Can anyone weigh in about the Alliance storyline? I’m still having fun but all the best of 2018 threads make me realize how few other games I played this year.

The Alliance Side's War Campaign is pretty good. Somewhat stereotypically, it tends to be about undoing the Horde's mistakes, but the Alliance is not also necessarily the most honorable in the fight either like they have been prior either.

To wit, part of our invasion of Zuldazar will include a surprise attack that was set up months ago.

But, they're also still taking prisoners where they can. The 7th Legion's forces are led by a combination of Alleria, Mathias Shaw (the pragmatic spymaster), and a Paladin who generally fights to do the right thing... but isn't necessarily totally above dirty hands at the end of the day if it'll save more lives down the line.

That said, there is a specific miss in terms of setting up the raid, for me... or maybe less of a miss and more of a tragic event (though it doesn't come close to the choice for Hordies on killing or not killing a person specifically tied to a class identity like that... which is really f*cking stupid...).

On Grong:

Spoiler:

So, Grong is hyper-intelligent ape. He and his pack have been exposed to Kajemite, which is basically what gave goblins their intelligence. That particular pack is worried about the Horde's influence on Zuldazar and what that means for the island as a whole. So they ally themselves with the Alliance. The gnomes, meanwhile, have apparently been working on their "masterpiece" to overcome their physical limitations on height... a device that proportionally increases the wearer's size and strength based on their intellect.

You can probably see where this is going. Grong is the one who helped the gnomes FINISH the device that was a prototype and turn it into something actually testable. He decides, as the most intelligent of the manufacturers of this device, to be it's original user.

All well and good... until you start to realize that the enlargement seems to come at the COST OF intellect rather than as a result of intellect. By the time the gnomes put a stop to the test, Grong is basically a mindless brute that would make King Kong look a little small and weak by comparison. He's tranquilized and basically prepped to be a drop-in on Zuldazar during the attack. For what it's worth, the gnomes clearly aren't EXCITED about the results. They have a weapon, they'll use it, but they also clearly feel kind of sh*t about what happened to the being they grew to know and appreciate for his intellect.

It's tragic and I felt like sh*t by the end of that.

That said, having done the original Darkshore storyline on both factions... the Horde's stuff is immeasurably worse. I really do hope this expansion ends with Sylvanas and Nathanos dead dead. I miss the Horde prior to her. They were great foils to the Alliance. There was idealism versus pragmatism. There was measured responses versus brutality. And between them both, there was still a value of honor shared where they frequently were at each other's throats or hurting each other, but they still valued the other side when the other side did something for everyone.

Now? Like I know Saurfang is out there, it sounds like Baine's basically already on his side, Rohkan probably would be too, Gallywix may or may not be realizing this was NOT his best idea, and I can't imagine Lothamar not saying "wow, ummm... yeah bye" on her and saving his people by siding with everyone else against her if it came down to it.

But... god damn, like... just... bleeeeeeeeeh, every time I have a new quest from Sylvanas on my Horde alt, I have to psych myself up to do it and just try to do it as quickly as possible to be done with it.

Meanwhile, for Alliance side... Tyrande is a badass again... Malfurion is also kind of a super badass again... and amusingly, we have Maiev and Tyrande working together and kind of reconciling their past disagreements for the betterment of their people.

My only real complaint about the Warfront storyline is Tyrande has literally been without her home for like months. Who's that helping the Night Elves AGAIN? Oh look, the Worgen... who've been waiting to retake and cleanse Gilneas for years... who already put their home on the back burner (no pun intended) to help Teldrassil during the initial attack... but who now have to wait, again, to retake it because other "more important" people need their stuff first.

I've not played any of the Alliance side stuff yet. Is it me...or is Tyrande looking a bit like Sylvanas these days?

astralplaydoh wrote:

I've not played any of the Alliance side stuff yet. Is it me...or is Tyrande looking a bit like Sylvanas these days?

I noticed that too. Is she drinking the same cool-aid?

Dumb question - how does the new storyline play out? If I’ve unlocked WQs can I just start the new missions? Or do I need to complete the old raids? The reason I’m asking is the realization that for me the alliance storyline has been super disjointed. I’m much more up on the individual zone stories vs the entire war story.

So far the breakdown for me has been the following:

Darkshore story and world quests - have to be 120 and completed war campaign (my 120 DH was the only one who could see/do both of these. Every time my 116 rogue tried, she got dropped onto a beach near Darkshore with 120-122 monsters and elites with no flight points, quests or WQ's)
Faction incursions - are tricky but they are available to my level 112 DK and 116 rogue. They just aren't as visible on the map as Broken Isle Invasions. If you stumble into an area designated as an incursion, you will automatically be assigned the quests and the hotspot markers will appear on the map
warfronts - it looks like it is active but the horde are in the build up/gathering phase

The xp for these activities is noticeable but I wouldn't call it great. My 116 rogue was getting 25K (rested) for killing named elites or world bosses which is 1/6th a level. It still takes quite a while to level as there is a lot of running around to find them and most take a while to kill.

There is enough to keep me interested for a while (aside from the Horde story). But I feel like Blizzard followed up promising mechanics at BFA's launch with... more promising mechanics. They needed to refine and expand upon them this patch and they did little of that. And TBH even the thrown bone of reduced XP reqs to level is only good with rested XP. For me, even with all my alts, that will only last a week or two and then what?

fangblackbone wrote:

Faction incursions - are tricky but they are available to my level 112 DK and 116 rogue. They just aren't as visible on the map as Broken Isle Invasions. If you stumble into an area designated as an incursion, you will automatically be assigned the quests and the hotspot markers will appear on the map
warfronts - it looks like it is active but the horde are in the build up/gathering phase

There's one up now in Zuldazar. One catch, tho: If you're Alliance, you have to have done the quest lines (not sure if it's some or all) to open up the zone. Same goes for Horde for incursions on Ally turf.

The quest lines are pretty short and available on the mission table on the boat in Boralus.

The incursions will be the good way to get the new 7th Legion currency, which is going to be a hellacious grind (for a completionist such as me; ymmv).

So, no one else jumped back in other than 2-3 gwjers?
Some of it I feel is like the Cataclysm revamp 2.0
But hear me out. The set pieces are much more palatable when they are near the level cap. They are far less frequent and much less in number. They typically have stages and they integrate more combat into them. They break up the grind for gear and rep.

By contrast the Cataclysm revamp was level 1-60 which made it matter nothing what class you played and you never developed the skills to play that class. Cataclysm was also everywhere and always on which combined with lack of level scaling made questing a hodgepodge of incomplete lore and left you with no idea where to go next. And lastly, the staging has greatly matured now. Not only do you get more layers to the quests than in Cataclysm, but each layer has more depth by including multiple objectives. They are actually their own little narratives and they are coherent, which made Cataclysm feel gimmicky.

So I did not really care about the story anyways. Burning Teldrassil was bold. But what made me upset is I care about the characters. So they can do whatever they want with recycled big bads and destroying landmarks, just don't f*ck with the characters. And well, they have f*cked with the characters, almost all of them: Jaina, Malfurion, Tyrande, Sylvannas, Sira Moonwarden, where the hell is Thrall?, etc.
I think they want to be Game of Thrones. Sorry, there is only one Game of Thrones and when it is over, I will be glad and hope that this "kill off everyone you might root for because its edgy" writing trend will die off.

fangblackbone wrote:

where the hell is Thrall?

Chris Metzen retired from Blizzard.

Actually I think he had some health issues or something that interfered with his ability to do voice work, so they haven't been using his character.

Could be the reason. But they have replaced other voice actors so it would be a silly reason. Lore wise it makes zero sense that he is completely gone.
On the other hand the horde isn’t the faction in lack of decent characters right now.

Shadout wrote:

Could be the reason. But they have replaced other voice actors so it would be a silly reason. Lore wise it makes zero sense that he is completely gone.
On the other hand the horde isn’t the faction in lack of decent characters right now.

Replacing a hired actor is one thing. Replacing somebody who was at the company for decades in a very senior role, who is personally invested in the character, and who wants to come back to voice them again, all while you have plenty of other Horde characters that can drive the story for now? That'd be a pretty dick move.

Vargen wrote:
Shadout wrote:

Could be the reason. But they have replaced other voice actors so it would be a silly reason. Lore wise it makes zero sense that he is completely gone.
On the other hand the horde isn’t the faction in lack of decent characters right now.

Replacing a hired actor is one thing. Replacing somebody who was at the company for decades in a very senior role, who is personally invested in the character, and who wants to come back to voice them again, all while you have plenty of other Horde characters that can drive the story for now? That'd be a pretty dick move.

But they could at least throw in something about how Thrall is busy changing diapers or something. This bugs me across any large universe (like MCU) where it would be obvious some important character should be involved, but due to non-story reasons they are not (i.e. not having any Avengers in Winter Soldier or not inviting Thor to their little airport fight).

Sure, if Metzen wants to come back they shouldn't replace him.
But yeah, even without a voice actor Thrall could show up, silently staring at Sylvanas or whatever, or throw in some reason for not showing up.

Theres also the part where Thrall is completely Antithetical to the whole faction conflict, to the point of no longer really being a Horde character. It makes sense for him to not be in the foreground while faction conflict is driving the story.

thrawn82 wrote:

Theres also the part where Thrall is completely Antithetical to the whole faction conflict

Which is the direction they should have gone and should go. There is plenty of conflict coexisting with the different approaches that the factions don't need to be warring and annihilating landmarks.

thrawn82 wrote:

Theres also the part where Thrall is completely Antithetical to the whole faction conflict, to the point of no longer really being a Horde character. It makes sense for him to not be in the foreground while faction conflict is driving the story.

He could be speaking against conflict. Maybe some interaction with Jaina - who herself has lacked interesting interactions so far. Anyway, I dont think Thrall in particular needed to be in the foreground. Just weird that he is nowhere at all. Have him sit in Orgrimmar teaching orc kids or something - at least that would seem fairly appropriate, having given up on the current generation, trying to save the next.
Characters disappearing makes the world seem more like a themepark, this year we have this handful of story characters in the world, next year it will these other characters. It has been true for plenty of other major characters before as well, they magically pop back in when relevant for some cutscene.

Not a fan of the war storyline either way, but that is another matter.

Well the rational for continuing the conflict after legion is so flimsy, I don'y think it could stand up to any sort of speaking against it. That's why he's left the scene. They can't have him around because he couldn't not speak against it and still be Thrall, and their current plot can't handle any spotlighting of the lack of rationale.

For reference, officially in canon, per the Doomhammer acquisition questline, Thrall is off somewhere trying to reestablish his connection to the elements... which he apparently has been losing since his confrontation with Garrosh in Alt Draenor. He wanders off to find something to help him regain that connection (note, connection, not his former power as World Shaman)... and... yeah, he seems to have wandered pretty f*cking far to have ignored all of this... but at the same time, I could kind of see him feeling, as NOT the world shaman as not good enough anymore to deal with something potentially of this magnitude... especially if one of those spirits he's tried talking to is... say... Vol'jin's? I dunno if THAT questline has gone active yet, but... yeah, there's some serious questions to be asking there.

Still surprised he hasn't done more though, like I still don't get why he wasn't Warchief again and just found peace with THAT role again after Vol'jin's death.

fangblackbone wrote:

So, no one else jumped back in other than 2-3 gwjers?
Some of it I feel is like the Cataclysm revamp 2.0

I really feel like this is Legion 2.0: Same Gameplay, Different World.

Legion was fine (and probably my favorite expansion since Wrath in terms of gameplay). I just want something, I dunno, different.

That's not much of a specific criticism. It's more of a vague feeling.

As for the emphasis on different main characters ... that's not so different than a TV show with an ensemble cast. Main difference here is that WoW no longer has a Leslie Knope or Eleanor Shellstrop or Jake Peralta - i.e., that one character around which the rest of the show orbits. It did with Arthas, but no king rules forever!

The other yin-yang seems to be Ally/Horde cooperation. One expansion we're working together to save Azeroth and surrounding planets; the next we're trying to push the other faction into the sea. MAKE UP YOUR MIND BLIZZARD

Enix wrote:
fangblackbone wrote:

So, no one else jumped back in other than 2-3 gwjers?
Some of it I feel is like the Cataclysm revamp 2.0

I really feel like this is Legion 2.0: Same Gameplay, Different World.

Legion was fine (and probably my favorite expansion since Wrath in terms of gameplay). I just want something, I dunno, different.

That's not much of a specific criticism. It's more of a vague feeling.

As for the emphasis on different main characters ... that's not so different than a TV show with an ensemble cast. Main difference here is that WoW no longer has a Leslie Knope or Eleanor Shellstrop or Jake Peralta - i.e., that one character around which the rest of the show orbits. It did with Arthas, but no king rules forever!

The other yin-yang seems to be Ally/Horde cooperation. One expansion we're working together to save Azeroth and surrounding planets; the next we're trying to push the other faction into the sea. MAKE UP YOUR MIND BLIZZARD

Given that we've been fighting actual existential threats of nihilistic rage, potentially all-consuming monsters on the horizon... and we're still like "But that land should be mine not yours" rather than "Hey, how about we just stop killing each other because they're already trying to kill us both" is the greatest plot hole of this game for basically over a decade now. It really hasn't made sense since the Burning Legion.

Well I officially let my subscription lapse and deleted the client off my machine. It was fun leveling again in 7.3 and I really enjoyed early questing in BFA. But now that I'm 120 I realize the game doesn't really respect my time. I also realized that I haven't played any of the new hot games I bought because I was spending all my time in WOW.

I had a weird thing where I was having fun but only logging in when there was Faction Assaults and then when the Horde lost Darkshore, I was worried I wouldn't be able to stomach the final few thousand rep grind to get Maghar Orks. I managed to do it and managed to do the unnecessarily long and meandering intro quest.

Then, my taste for WoW plummeted. I created a Maghar warrior and played for about 15 minutes (most of which was the travel time from Orgrimmar to Hillsbrad Foothills). I played a newb blood elf priest for 40 minutes (I want that heritage armor). Then I started a Maghar monk and played for the exact same 15 minutes as the warrior.

I don't feel jaded towards WoW but the will is apparently gone.

I was planning to jump in again with the new patch, but has only done the new war campaign. It really feels like a disjointed expansion with few elements that works well.

I am so hot and cold with WoW these days, I just don't get it.
I fired up my Dranei shaman. I have made so many shaman alts whether allied race or not and it just hasn't stuck so I went back to my highest level. I had fun blowing through the rested xp and hit level 57 (6.5 levels)

I also fired up my old NE druid main hit level 77.7 and had lots of fun doing so. It is strange now that the 50-80 game is giving the 20-50 game a run for its money in fun. You trade off leveling speed and better quest flow for flying, better sense of scale in fighting and environments, and more mature abilities and more talents. I may just be able to level my oldest main to 120.

Lastly, I leveled my rogue to spitting within spitting distance of 118. I will tell you right now to experience BFA with a demon hunter. Questing and leveling from 110-120 is a trudge that is made infinitely better with the accessibility that gliding provides. It is easier to navigate everything from the hidden world chests, to countering the numerous missteps, to staving off falling damage, to basically getting half flying grind free (travel over water 3 times as fast, gliding in many cases can outrun indirect flight paths, Drustvar gliding is amazing) Of course this is for people that don't already have a 120 main or a 120 DH and are struggling or gave up when leveling 110-120.

Leveling is fun and easy this time around. I've gotten a rogue up to 55 already. I like being able to complete a zone without outleveling it, even with XP nerfs, full heirlooms and the rest bonus. Even better is being able to pick the zone, more or less.

DH is on the list. I never got around to rolling one in Legion. I'm not sure I want to level another toon in BfA. Once was plenty, and the two other toons I've brought over are mostly just haunting the bars of Boralus. I think the smart play is to level a Horde toon just to see how the other side lives.

Where is GWJ Alliance these days? I resubbed for the first time since Cataclysm and have been on for the better part of the last week. Having a great time questing, can't believe how fast the gold comes in now (at least at level 110+)

I likely won't be doing any raiding or anything, just curious if there is still a presence on Blackhand?

I'm now level 111. If someone wanna play with me, add me up !

I don't want to just dump on the new raid, but it sounds so underwhelming.
I keep hoping (only partially since I really have no time to play WoW) something will drag me back in, but nothing yet.

lunchbox12682 wrote:

I don't want to just dump on the new raid, but it sounds so underwhelming.
I keep hoping (only partially since I really have no time to play WoW) something will drag me back in, but nothing yet.

I think it sounds neat, what with how we'll play a third of it transmog'd into members of the opposite faction. And making a raid about the Alliance v. Horde side of things is unusual. If they can pull it off then this'll be a good way to get that part of the story in front of people in new ways.

Really though, it's going to come down to the encounter design and whether or not the bosses are fun to fight. That's really really hard to tell from previews.

Fatbosstv (the guys who do the wowhead guides) have put up vidoes for the the first couple of bosses on youtube. They look pretty promising I think - first boss is a bit vanilla maybe, but the other fights seem fun.