One thing players love to do in MMOs is create a unique look for their characters to set themselves apart or stand out in a crowd. Sometimes we do this with a combination of our armor and our mounts. As of now, there are many choices to what characters can wear but less choices for which mounts they can use. I always thought it would be neat if there was a way to customize our mounts as well. A simple example would be being able to choose what sort of saddle your mount has or accessories that it wears.
Other features I hope to see in 6.0 are a unified bank between characters that share an account and some sort of legacy system between alts. Allow alts to gain certain benefits from your other characters. For example if you have a max level character, your alts gain a five percent XP boost. I anticipate we will see more quality of life additions to the game as well. Perhaps we will get level or item level scaling, similar to what we see in Challenge Mode dungeons, based on who we’re grouped with and in what zones. Often times there is a barrier to entry for new players who also don’t have friends starting new characters. If I could invite new players to the game and then join them with my max level main but have my level and skills reduced to match theirs, I wouldn’t need start a new character to play with them. SImilarly, this could be used to make old raids and dungeons viable to players who have out leveled them. The question remains though, what benefit is there to replay older content other than for transmog gear and achievements? Maybe new high level quests can send us back to older content or it could be used as an alternate means to earn Valor or Justice Points. Or how about this crazy idea: If I take my max level character questing in low level zones with my level 20 friend, the XP I would otherwise earn can be offloaded to an alt. I might be dreaming big for that one, but that’s ok!
Will we finally see an item squish? I think it’ll happen this time around. Item squishing is essentially lowering item levels and their respective numbers across the board - this includes damage output and enemy health pools. This makes the numbers that users see easier to read while maintaining the percentage of damage being dealt. Recently Blizzard introduced commas to numbers large enough to need them to help the readability. With item squishing, my damaging spell would deal 1,000 damage to an enemy instead of 1,934,232. Even though the damage value is lower, the percent of damage done would remain the same as the enemies health pool is also reduced to match the squish. The downside to this though is that players coming back to the game or unaware of an item squish will be very confused when numbers have lowered instead of increasing with a new expansion.
The other large question about the next expansion is what new playable races and/or classes will there be, if any? To date, each expansion has offered at least one of the two, if not both. If they were to introduce a new class, I have no idea what sort of roll it would fill in the game. Perhaps a light healer and utility class? Or simply another take on a tank/dps/healer class like the Monk, although adding a similar class two expansions in row seems unlikely.
If you’ll be attending this year, Blizzard has release an official app for iOS and Android with the full schedule, map, updates and even the ability to watch live streams. So while you’re waiting in line at the demo stations, you’ll be to keep up with all of the esports offerings. The app also has social network integration so it will pull in all relevant tweets and Instagram photos. The app is completely free. Learn more and grab it here.
If you’re unable to attend in person, grab yourself a Virtual Ticket if you want to watch all of the events live from home.
I’ll be there as of Thursday evening and plan on tweeting the heck out of everything I see so if you want info from boots on the ground, give me a follow @rezalackey.
What do you hope to see in the next expansion? Let us know in the comments below!
This week’s throwback item: Murky’s Little Soulstone
Reza Lackey / Reza is a giant nerd who loves video games, board games, film and way too many other things. Works in the film industry, on some startups and thinks science is cool. Also launches rockets.