Top Ten: Blizzcon Wishlist
We are a mere 4 sleeps from the big day and all talk is of the almost guaranteed announcement of a new World of Warcraft expansion at Blizzcon.
First up I have a confession, whilst Blizzard have a number of high quality games within their portfolio the only one that really excites me is World of Warcraft. Don’t get me wrong Diablo, Hearthstone, Overwatch, HotS and Starcraft are all mighty fine games but I don’t get the same fuzzy warm feeling playing those that I do from WoW. As a result all the entries on my Blizzcon wishlist are World of Warcraft related.
Now if you play WoW you are probably already pretty clued up on the various leaks, rumours and datamined information that has been doing the rounds on the internet over the last few weeks, so I’m not going to repeat those here; well not in their entirety at least. What I am going to do is detail the 10 things I would most like to see in the new expansion, some of these will be based on current rumours, some will have had no speculation at all. I don’t make claim that any of these will happen, just that I would like them to.
That’s not a moon…
1. old world scaling
One of my favourite features in Legion was the ability to go to any of the levelling zones and have mobs scale to your level. It allowed players to work together regardless of level yet without trivialising the content for higher level players.
I’d love to see this rolled out for the entire 1-110 experience. If that would work better restricted by expansion or a total free for all I’m still not sure, all I know is it would be awesome taking a brand new alt to Borean Tundra at level 1 and carving out your story there.
2. Legacy system
As someone that loves playing alts the legacy system in Star Wars: The Old Republic is in my opinion, one of the best features of any MMO. For those unaware this system basically allows you to treat your characters as if they are all part of one dynasty. They can all contribute towards unlocking legacy only goals, they can share resources and they can even earn special legacy gear that can be sent to alts – similar to the account bound tokens in WoW.
Combine this system with player scaling and you have the perfect incentive for people to enjoy the game outside of their main characters.
We’ve not seen a new race in the World of Warcraft since Jack Black and his panda friends came along in Mists. I honestly can’t see Blizzard going three expansions without some kind of new race options being put in the game.
The rumour mill seems to point to us getting at least four new sub-races in the new expansion, namely Highmountain Tauren, Lightforged Draenei, Nightfallen and Void Elves. I would be over the moon if this came true, I think it gives the players some much needed deeper customisation options whilst also giving yet more reasons to level alts!
4. Player Progression
If scaling was one of my favourite features in Legion then my absolute number one feature was the player progression. Artifact weapons, class halls and the Arclight Crucible all provided options to progress and customise your character beyond just level and gear.
I would love to see this taken further in the next expansion, perhaps the light/void mechanic being rolled out in a bigger way; allowing you to choose the path of your character and then them eventually taking on visual aspects of their chosen path. My paladin infused with the purple power of the void would really make my day.
5. no mob tagging
How many times have we heard Khadgar say something like the above over the last few expansions? Yet when you then go out into the world you see mobs tagged by the opposite faction which you don’t get credit for when killing.
This restriction has been lifted for world bosses and elites yet remains in place for regular mobs which feels a bit arbitrary. I can’t see any valid reason for this to remain in the game going forward and unless we end up with a very Horde vs Alliance focussed expansion I can see this going the way of the Twilight Dragons.
6. More Follower Content
I would like followers to be a more integral and interactive part of the game; I want to be able to talk to them, have them contribute to cut scenes and storylines, be able to properly gear them up using the drops I find in the world and have their appearances be customisable.
My top wish for followers though is for me to be able to select a party of NPCs and go complete instanced content with them. That could be in the form of either a souped-up version of Withered training or even real dungeons.
7. New ways to play dungeons
Dungeons have always been a staple of WoW and with the advent of Mythic + and Timewalking there are now more ways to play as a group than ever before. I would like to see that taken even further by mixing some of the roguelike aspects of the Chromie event / Withered Training with traditional dungeons.
Give the players a procedurally generated dungeon where every floor is its own self-contained challenge. Players would need to explore the first level of the dungeon, gear themselves up and defeat the boss before level 2 would be unlocked. Each level of the dungeon would be progressively harder, introducing new enemies and mechanics to overcome.
This feature could be implemented as 5 man content or would mesh perfectly with my hope for better follower content.
8. A new world pvp zone
I miss Wintergrasp.
I’m no fan of PvP, I’d honestly rather not play the game at all than do battlegrounds or arenas. Wintergrasp however has always held a special place in my heart. The siege gameplay, the attacker / defender dynamic and the rewards for holding Wintergrasp really motivated the player base to contribute.
Can you imagine a new style of Wintergrasp where the attackers are in big pirate ships and the defenders are in a sea fort? Stick in some grappling hook like mechanics, destructible walls, even sinkable ships for the attackers and I think world PvP would be back with a vengeance.
9. Expansion of world quests
If Blizzard do pull the trigger on world scaling, then it would be the perfect time to introduce world quests all over Azeroth. The emissary cache system was a great way to keep outdated content relevant. If expanded to the entire of Azeroth this would get players to revisit seldom used zones, build up reputation with the factions that dwell in those zones and generally make the world feel more populated.
Giving each of these factions a vendor with some exclusive rep gated goodies would keep players coming back week after week.
A life on the ocean wave.
Image by Garitt Rocha via Prima Games
10. boats, boats, boats
With all the talk about a South Seas expansion this surely has to be the expansion where we see player boats. As to what form they will take I’m not so sure.
I can’t see the garrison / class hall mechanic going anywhere soon, for all the criticism the garrisons got in WoD they introduced a number of features that are still enjoyed by many players today. I think these features will return in a big way in the next expansion, I can see us getting a Vindicaar style boat that we can shift from zone to zone but it has upgradable sections similar to the Draenor garrison buildings.
What this doesn’t do however is allow the player to really have the kind of sailing experience they are asking for. If you have ever played The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker you will know of the joyous sailing experience I’m referring to, the exploration, the feedback from the waves, the serenity of just you and the sea. Sadly I’m not sure the WoW engine could do this kind of thing justice.
So there we have it, my Top Ten wishlist for Blizzcon 2017, I hope you’ve enjoyed reading and please let me know in the comments what you would like to see announced on the big day.
Until next time folks