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All classes now cast spells if you create a new character on the Alpha. The new animations are supposed to showcase how the individual classes look while in combat, and the new feature is especially useful for new players.
Blizzard continues to improve the character creation screen with each build visually. Recently, they made all classes wear different sets and added poses. In the latest Alpha build, they added new animations for all classes, and you check them out below!
Which one is your favorite?
Bellular interviewed Game Director Ion Hazzikostas and we learned more about the philosophy behind Conduits and Soulbinds, mainly, why they get destroyed when replaced.
What Are Conduits?
You can augment Soulbinds in Shadowlands to socket passives that enhance your Class and Covenant Abilities in various ways. You can read the official preview for more details on Soulbinds.
Conduits operate like gems, so if you put one in and would like to replace it later, the original Conduit gets destroyed. Bellular talked to Ion about the philosophy behind the destructibility of Conduits.
The Forge of Bonds also allows you to augment your Soulbinds with Conduits, socketed passives that enhance your Class and Covenant Abilities. Here are examples of Conduits for Warriors.
Warrior (all specs): Execute increases the critical strike chance of subsequent Executes for a moderate amount of time, stacking substantially.
Warrior (Kyrian, all specs): Spear of Bastion’s instant damage and Rage generation are significantly increased.
Warrior (Necrolord, all specs): Brandishing the Conqueror’s Banner (Covenant Ability) immediately grants you a moderate amount of Glory (used to prolong the duration of your banner), and while the banner is planted your Strength is moderately increased.
Warrior (Night Fae, all specs): Ancient Aftershock’s damage and Rage generation are significantly increased against the first target struck.
Warrior (Venthyr, all specs): Condemn’s damage dealt and prevented are moderately increased for each nearby enemy.
Warrior (Arms): Overpower has a chance to apply Colossus Smash for a few seconds.
Warrior (Fury): Recklessness now last moderately longer.
Warrior (Protection): Last Stand significantly increases your Rage generation.
Conduits are bonus drops that you get from dungeons, bosses, some will be on vendors. They want to add Stamina to some Conduits to offset Throughput benefits that are coming from the system. If you could pop Conduits out, the right way to play would be the massive nuisance of inventory management. You would have to carry a lot of Conduits with you and swap them out all the time, which is not what they want you to do. But the bigger philosophical reason is choice. There are a lot of systems that require micromanagement on an encounter by encounter basis. Conduits and Soulbinds offer a lot more customization flexibility than Legion Relics did, you didn't have two Ashbringer loadouts. They are loathed to add another layer of micro-changes that you feel like you have to make, so Conduits are destructible. They don't want you to resocket 5 conduits for every dungeon/raid/encounter, so if Conduits were not destructible, it would not add much but turn into chores that you have to complete in order to be optimal. You can watch the whole interview below.
Blizzard plans to disable the Corruption System in the Shadowlands pre-patch.
Another interesting bit from the PandaTV interview deals with Corruption that will cease to work in the Shadowlands pre-patch that should go live four to six weeks prior to the expansion.
Game Director Ion Hazzikostas said the game is broken right now and there's nothing they can do with someone who has 100% Critical Chance, that's why they are disabling the whole system in the first place, they will preserve a legacy tooltip on Preserved Contaminants that will turn into Spoiled Contaminants, e.g. Spoiled Contaminant.
Azerite gear and Essences won't stop working in the pre-patch.
Shadowlands will have no Warforging, Titanforging, or any similar system.
You can watch the part where Ion discusses Essences in the VoD below.
Game Director Ion Hazzikostas talked to PandaTV and confirmed that we will be able to swap our weapons during Mythic+ runs in the new expansion.
Ion compared Mythic+ dungeons to a long raid encounter in the interview and you can swap weapons there, so it doesn't make sense if you couldn't do so during a Mythic+ run. He also stressed out that gear swapping will be limited to weapons.
They also talked about Seasonal affixes in Shadowlands, the first one will be themed after Castle Nathria and will be easier because players will be learning dungeons at the beginning of the expansion.
Bursting and Volcanic have been changed in Shadowlands to scale with key level instead of health.
You can watch the whole interview below.
The official previews continue with a look at Runecarving, or forging Legendary Items in Shadowlands.
We looked at how we will forge Legendary Items in Shadowlands in Towelliee's preview.
In the Shadowlands, players will meet the Runecarver, a mysterious figure locked away in the very depths of Torghast. To find the Runecarver, players will need to go through the initial Torghast experience and defeat Warden Skoldus in Skoldus Halls, receiving a mysterious key which starts the questline that unlocks the beginning of the Runecarver’s story. Once unlocked, players will be able to call on the power of the Runecarver to carve ancient runes on their armor and imbue them with Legendary power.
For testing, we’re plan to add a teleport NPC inside Torghast that will take testers directly to the Runecarver, so they can begin crafting their own Legendary armor almost immediately.
Memories and Legendary Powers
To craft Legendary armor, you’ll first need to retrieve specific memories that contain Legendary powers. These memories can be found all over Shadowlands – from questing, running dungeons with friends, fighting against the enemy faction, or defeating powerful foes in Castle Nathria and the Maw, there will be plenty of work for the bravest of champions to do in order to collect them all.
Once found, players can take these memories back to the Runecarver in Torghast, who will then be able to imbue specific Profession-crafted armor pieces with this power. Not all powers can be applied to all armor slots. For example, some powers can only be applied to Boots and Pants.
The Legendary powers available to players in Shadowlands have strong ties to the history of Azeroth. As they are memories in their base form, these Legendary powers are new interpretations of Set Bonuses, Legendaries, and other powers that players have had access to in World of Warcraft’s history. In addition to these more historic powers, players will also be able to unlock a few Torghast Anima Powers as possible Legendary powers.
Crafting your Legendary
Before you can craft your Legendary, you’ll need to gather a few materials first:
A Base Item. These items are created by Blacksmiths, Leatherworkers, Tailors and Jewelcrafters and serve as the vessel for Legendary powers. These items are not soulbound, and can be acquired from other players, alts or the Auction House. There’s no requirement that a character has to have a crafting profession to make Legendary armor; crafting Legendaries is open to all players as long as you’ve collected the appropriate reagents. The Legendary power of your choosing. Two Optional Reagents. These optional reagents dictate the secondary stats (Critical Strike, Haste, Mastery and Versatility) of the crafted Legendary. Unlike normal Profession crafted items, these reagents are necessary for the creation of Legendary armor. Carcerus. This raw source of power is used to fuel the Runecarver’s Chamber and is needed to craft Legendary armor. Carcerus is found in Torghast as a reward for completing sections of the Tower. As the item level of the Base Item increases, so does the required fuel to create Legendaries, so players will need more Carcerus as they start crafting higher item level pieces. Somehow, the friendly Runeataur has found himself stuck inside the Runecarver’s chamber. He’ll be able to supply players with the base armor pieces, legendary powers, optional reagents, and Carcerus required to craft Legendary armor. But he’s not a big fan of being trapped inside the chamber with the Runecarver, so he won’t be around for long.
Additional Information and Updates
Players will only be able to wear one piece of Legendary Armor at a time and Legendary powers cannot be applied to Weapons or Trinkets.
To start, there will be an allotment of 4 Legendary powers for each base class and 4 for each spec. In addition to that, there will be a generic pool of Legendary powers available to all classes.
Not all classes currently have Legendary powers implemented. We expect to get all of the class powers in place over the next few weeks.
In the coming weeks, we’re planning on adding a system to allow players to upgrade the item level of their Legendary armor through the Runecarver. If they’ve imbued a lower item level piece, they’ll be able to collect more materials from Torghast and Professions, instead of having to imbue a brand new piece of armor.
Please use this thread to provide your feedback and discuss Runecarving and Legendary powers in Shadowlands.
Thank you very much!