The fact that Battle for Azeroth’s reception could be going better is well known, so World of Warcraft game director Ion Hazzikostas announcing a content patch with a bunch of shiny new features probably shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise to everybody. Still, the features are pretty exciting.
People have been clamouring for account-wide reputations for a while now, and while Blizzard isn’t quite ready for that yet, they are ready to get rid of some of the more annoying aspects of character-specific reputations. For a start, a bunch of reputation locks will be removed, like the locks on some reputation-specific transmogs. Unlocking Champions of Azeroth on one character will unlock that particular reputation on all. And if you’ve been farming reputations for that achievement that rewards the Pureheart Courser – which I bet you are, because who among us doesn’t want a pure white unicorn made of starlight and innocence? – your life just got easier. Progress towards any achievement that requires unlocking a certain amount of exalted reputations is now account-wide.
Dat content tho
New Warfront! New Island Expeditions! New raids!
One problem with Warfronts is the way it leaves one faction constantly feeling at least slightly ignored. When the Alliance is occupying an area, there’s not a lot that the Horde feel like we can do. The Battle for Darkshore promises to at least make the whole system feel a little more balanced, as this hopefully means when Horde occupy Arathi Highlands, Alliance can focus on Darkshore, and vice versa.
People have complained that the Island Expeditions in beta were a lot more fun. Apparently, we got the watered down version. Tides of Vengeance seems to be intended to change that, not only bringing us two new islands to explore, but also a bunch of new features as well, including new enemies and events.
Finally (and most exciting for me), the new raids. The first is called Siege of Zuldazar (because why not? Sieging Horde capitals can become a thing, like burning Alliance ones) and the second, Crucible of Storms. The Zuldazar raid is the first we’ve seen where the “big bad” is actually the other faction, and it will be experienced differently by each separate faction and it sounds like Horde have to fight Jaina which, you know, has me half-intending to call in sick that day. Crucible of Storms will come later, and this one is a two-boss raid about the “dark secrets beneath Stormsong” – so, you know, old gods.
Dat other content
Tides of Vengeance will bring us new world quests. It will also bring us Incursions, which apparently are going to be like Legion’s Invasions, only instead of an area being assaulted by the Legion, it’ll be assaulted by the Alliance or the Horde. Invasions were great ways to quickly level up and gear alts, so here’s hoping Incursions will be as well.
The War Campaign is going to continue, which means more quests and more content, but I’m really hoping means a better mission table as well. I realise it’s not for everyone, but I really enjoyed choosing and gearing up specific champions in Legion, as well as the rewards that came with that. Battle for Azeroth’s mission table has not offered us anything particularly compelling so far, but maybe that’s about to change.
There’s also going to be a new pet battle dungeon, this one set in Gnomeregan.
Yes, Azerite armour, classes, and professions are all going to be improved
This is probably the least surprising update. Azerite armour is feeling a little lacklustre at the moment, so I want to believe the new Azerite traits will be pretty exciting. Professions are getting new recipes, and classes will be updated. Honestly, we’ll have to wait and see exactly what these new traits, recipes and updates are going to be before I can really get too excited about it here.
Non-Allied races are getting heritage armour. First in line to get this armour are Dwarves and Blood Elves, and the whole thing sounds pretty great, with race-specific questlines exploring what it means to be a part of the race you play, how your character fits into the greater lore.
But I don’t even care about all of that. All I want to know is does this mean Night Elf players might get those battle bikini mogs?
Please, oh please, Blizzard say yes. And then make Heritage armour account wide so that I can wear it on my Nightborne or… ooh, my Goblin. Yes, I need this on my Goblin, kthanksbai.
New story-driven content
Okay, so this probably mostly means the stuff I’ve already mentioned like the new Warfronts and raids, but Battle for Azeroth’s story has been the one thing it’s gotten near perfectly right so far, so the fact that they mentioned the new content is “story-driven” is so exciting. Will Horde finally get a questline that compares even a little to the Pride of Kul Tiras – Jaina’s incredible story-driven questline? With Ion specifically mentioning both Vol’jin and Saurfang, it sounds very promising indeed.