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Live Developer Q&A Roundup: Jun 14

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Game Director Ion Hazzikostas answered your Battle for Azeroth questions over on Twitch in a Live Developer Q&A earlier today. Check out the highlights!

Battle for Azeroth 8.0 Pre-Patch

  • PTR realms have been updated and the pre-expansion patch is now available for playtesting.
  • When 8.0 pre-patch goes live, Legion Artifacts will be disabled, but the player power will be brought up to compensate for the power loss.
  • The BfA pre-expansion patch contains all systems updates and features, aside from BfA content. No exact release date has been announced yet.
  • The pre-patch also comes with the new War Mode and an updated Honor Talent system.

Allied Races

  • Ion again confirmed that Blood Trolls are not going to be an Allied Race in Battle for Azeroth
  • Allied Races are not only exclusive to Battle for Azeroth. We will come across new Allied Races in future expansions.

Class Buffs

  • At BlizzCon, we saw the return of many class buffs. Mark of the Wild was removed on BfA, because Druids already bring enough utility to the table (Battle rez, Innervate).

Class Changes

  • The window for major changes is rapidly closing. Talent tweaks are ongoing. They're going to target sweeping changes for Patch 8.1 and no major changes (e.g. significant rotation overhauls) are planned for the pre-patch.
  • Tiger's FuryTiger's Fury will be off global cooldown in the next Beta build.

Environmental Changes

  • In pre-patch, the sword in Silithus will be visible to everyone.

Flying

  • No plans to remove Draenor PathfinderDraenor Pathfinder right now, as it decreases the value of Pathfinder achievements.

Gearing

  • End-game sources of Azerite armor are going to be time-gated by raid lockout, Mythic cache, etc..
  • Heart of Azeroth catchup mechanisms will be implemented later on in the expansion, but as opposed to Artifact Power in Legion, they're going to reduce the Artifact Power requirement by ~25-30%.

Patch Cycles

  • We'll have exactly the same patch cycle in BfA as in Legion.

PvP

  • War Mode and the new Honor Talent system will be available in the pre-patch as well.
  • RP/RPPVP realms and War Mode: By default, you will only see players from YOUR server on these realms, unless you specifically opt in cross-realm invites.
  • PvP Seasons in BfA will last longer than they did in Legion.
  • They plan to launch a Legion post-Season in 8.0 pre-patch.
  • The goal of PvP loot distribution in Battle for Azeroth is to complement random-ish end-of-match rewards with something more reliable.
    • Three parallel systems that reward are coming:
      • End-of-match rewards with a chance to get an item.
      • Fixed weekly rewards:
        • Filling the bar with conquest point will reward a piece of loot. You will get a new set item every week.
      • Powerful weekly rewards based on your skill and rating: Higher tier pieces that are proportional to your ranking, based on the highest bracket.

Raids

  • In BfA, there are Hall of Fame achievements that award top 100 guilds to kill the final raid boss on Mythic difficulty.
    • Once 100 guilds of both factions complete the achievement and defeat G'huun on Mythic difficulty in Uldir, cross-realm Mythic raiding will become accessible. 

Mythic+

  • In Battle for Azeroth, gear switching is not possible in Mythic+ runs and the change is intended.
  • Mythic+ Changes: 
    • Tyrannical/Fortified are now level 2 affixes, effectively getting rid of the ridiculous 9>10 spike in difficulty.
  • Seasonal Affixes are coming in Battle for Azeroth.  The first Seasonal level 10 affix is called Infested:
    • A parasite of G'huun will infest non-boss units, making them more powerful, changing the way how you approach pulls. As you kill trash, a parasite will appear and jump to another host. You have a short time frame to kill it.
  • Mythic quality Uldir items will be available in the weekly chest. One month after BfA, rewards from M+10 will be equivalent to Heroic Uldir gear.

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16 minutes ago, Stan said:

We will come across new Allied Races in future expansions.

Bring Tuskarr and Earthen Dwarves for the next expansion!

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1 hour ago, Stan said:

No plans to remove Draenor PathfinderDraenor Pathfinder right now, as it decreases the value of Pathfinder achievements.

Why would they want to remove it ever? I really don't see a point with removing something players have been working hard to get and that helps with leveling alts (wich is now a pain). :p

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8 minutes ago, Jozee said:

Why would they want to remove it ever? I really don't see a point with removing something players have been working hard to get and that helps with leveling alts (wich is now a pain). 😛

Because leveling becomes tedious when you come to Draenor and the content is far from relevant. Imagine having no access to flying in Outland, Northrend or Pandaria right now. WoD is two expansions old and the decision to keep Pathfinder in place is really odd to me. I know that you get a mount reward and everything, but they should have made a FoS out of it.

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Mythic+

  • In Battle for Azeroth, gear switching is not possible in Mythic+ runs and the change is intended.

This is terrible and caters to casuals. They remove the Diablo-esque legendaries, but OH NO now there's an empty spot for a Diablo III mechanic that makes zero sense in WoW. So what do we do? not being able to swap gear in m+ (just like you can't in Greater Rifts) ofc.

This makes even less sense if you think about Azerite gear. I guess they think that because of the trait swapping, it's as versatile as gear swapping. However, this just leads people to have separate Azerite gear sets for all BfA dungeons.

I get that they don't like cheesing stuff with gear swapping but this change will have the directly opposite effect from what intended. Why? Because in higher keys you are shoehorned into wearing a defensive trinket for the entirety of the dungeon. Currently in the Beta, defensive trinkets are VERY broken, for example that trinket from Aggramar absorbs the same amount as in live and it hasn't been fixed like other OP Beta bullshit. I am not sure how this promotes a healthy playstyle.

Between this, the GCD and the tank threat changes I don't understand why they are moving backwards and they don't listen to the community at all. BfA is 2 months away and the game is far from ready. They have really rushed this expansion from fear of content draught accusations just like it happened with previous expansion (1 year SOO and HFC).

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6 minutes ago, Stan said:

Because leveling becomes tedious when you come to Draenor and the content is far from relevant. Imagine having no access to flying in Outland, Northrend or Pandaria right now. WoD is two expansions old and the decision to keep Pathfinder in place is really odd to me.

I think I might have missunderstod the text then. I thought since they wrote that they wont remove the pathfinder right now they might remove it in the future. 

I don't relly understand your answer though (english is not my first language, could be why). I said "why would they want to remove it ever?" and you replied "Because leveling becomes tedious." I don't understand how that would be a reason to remove it. It would be even more tedious if they removed it. 

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I find it interesting that on the topic of Allied Races, the only ones of the suspsected races to be ruled out were Blood Trolls. The San'layn and Vulpera on the other hand, who is looking increasingly likely to seek out the Alliance and Horde so far through in-game interactions, have not been mentioned.

A little reading between the lines, but it does give some credence to these being added, or at least Blizzard not having decided yet.

I know the snake people are interesting too to a good chunk, but that'd make three races, so unless a new one pops up, I doubt those the most.

But hey, I'd love to be proven wrong on that race.

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2 minutes ago, Jozee said:

I think I might have missunderstod the text then. I thought since they wrote that they wont remove the pathfinder right now they might remove it in the future. 

I don't relly understand your answer though (english is not my first language, could be why). I said "why would they want to remove it ever?" and you replied "Because leveling becomes tedious." I don't understand how that would be a reason to remove it. It would be even more tedious if they removed it. 

i think he means if they remove the pathfinder, they would give everyone access to flying or at least sell it for gold.

as my opinion in one hand i think we should be rewarded for a rather long to farm achievement on the other hand i dont it is reasonable to ask someone new (or returning) to do basiclly do the whole expac all over to get the flying. also we had to level alts back in wod whitout flying but again it is an outdated expac. so i think they should put a penalty for getting the dreanor flight. i would of siad making that mount unobtainable with achieve but its an ugly mount :D. i think best thing is to sell the flying for people whitout achieve and make achieve (and mount) FOS.

as for allied races i dont know why the hell no one is talking about dark rangers !!! they could add them as either a new allied race or class ( i prefer class) :). since they were a part of hunter campaign during legion they could be a race with few classes (hunter and myabe 1 or 2 more) or a dark hunter class (kind of like old sv hunter but darker) 

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6 minutes ago, blackstar128 said:

i think he means if they remove the pathfinder, they would give everyone access to flying or at least sell it for gold.

as my opinion in one hand i think we should be rewarded for a rather long to farm achievement on the other hand i dont it is reasonable to ask someone new (or returning) to do basiclly do the whole expac all over to get the flying. also we had to level alts back in wod whitout flying but again it is an outdated expac. so i think they should put a penalty for getting the dreanor flight. i would of siad making that mount unobtainable with achieve but its an ugly mount :D. i think best thing is to sell the flying for people whitout achieve and make achieve (and mount) FOS.

as for allied races i dont know why the hell no one is talking about dark rangers !!! they could add them as either a new allied race or class ( i prefer class) :). since they were a part of hunter campaign during legion they could be a race with few classes (hunter and myabe 1 or 2 more) or a dark hunter class (kind of like old sv hunter but darker) 

Yes ofc, that makes sense! Thank you. And i agree with you aswell :p

Edited by Jozee

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Allied Races are not only exclusive to Battle for Azeroth. We will come across new Allied Races in future expansions.

As I expected Allied Races are now just a cop out for Blizz to fool people into thinking they're adding new content when really they're just reskinning models and using the same animations. Hell the Allied Races don't even have decent customizations. I can count the Nightborne faces on one hand. We will never get ogres. Or Hozen. Or anything outlandish or new. Just different coloured elves or dwarves or orcs.

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11 hours ago, Stan said:

Because leveling becomes tedious when you come to Draenor and the content is far from relevant. Imagine having no access to flying in Outland, Northrend or Pandaria right now. WoD is two expansions old and the decision to keep Pathfinder in place is really odd to me. I know that you get a mount reward and everything, but they should have made a FoS out of it.

I didn't play during WoD and I went back and did the Draenor Pathfinder around NH release, it honestly wasn't that bad. I personally hope they keep it, if you don't put in the work, you don't get the reward, simple as that.

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This is the least excited I've ever been for a WoW expansion. I disagree with so many of the changes. We'll just be playing the same rotation for the next 2-3 years as well, except that we lose an ability here and there. A lot of the "polishing" usually revolves around lowering the skill ceiling on top of that by removing secondary resources and just "let's put it in a recharge mechanic"

 

This expansion feels soulless and uninspirational. I'm bummed out by it. This was my baby. It isn't getting the love it deserves.

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21 hours ago, Stan said:

Mythic+

  • Mythic+ Changes: 
    • Tyrannical/Fortified are now level 2 affixes, effectively getting rid of the ridiculous 9>10 spike in difficulty.
  • Mythic quality Uldir items will be available in the weekly chest. One month after BfA, rewards from M+10 will be equivalent to Heroic Uldir gear.

First: I read statements of many players it would be very appreciated to delete Tyrannical/Fortified and just make a scale with each keystone-level and cap some inc.-dmg at a certain point. And yes, this is my opinion too. It's just horrible how certain dungeons scale in difficulty with either Tyrannical or Fortified. Furthermore it seems pretty difficult to balance around this two affixes, otherwise we wouldn't have some oneshot-mechanics even if you play a proper tactic.

Now, as they are level 2 affixes, certain combos aren't possible. This makes it a bit better...but yeah, seems they have reason to keep this unbalanced affixes in rotation.

Second: I hope they wont cap it at this level, otherwise it's the same problem it is right now: no motivation to play more than 1 max. cap-key per week.

Edited by Allseye
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Oh, okay so classes aren't actually done until the NEXT major patch, AFTER the release? Bang up job, Blizzard, release half baked products.

Not sure why they even bother having Alphas or Betas at this point. Most feedback went ignored for Legion, and this time around they clearly didn't start soon enough.

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On 6/14/2018 at 3:34 PM, Stan said:

Because leveling becomes tedious when you come to Draenor and the content is far from relevant. Imagine having no access to flying in Outland, Northrend or Pandaria right now. WoD is two expansions old and the decision to keep Pathfinder in place is really odd to me. I know that you get a mount reward and everything, but they should have made a FoS out of it.

If I had to suffer through WoD to get the pathfinder achievement then so will everyone who doesn't have it!

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