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Battle for Azeroth Live Q&A with Ion Hazzikostas

Posted by Suzie Ford on Mar 15, 2018  | Comments

Battle for Azeroth Live Q&A with Ion Hazzikostas - World of Warcraft - MMORPG.com

World of Warcraft Game Director Ion Hazzikostas is on hand for a live Q&A focused on the content that is currently available in the Battle for Azeroth alpha expansion. We've got the answers to the burning questions Hazzikostas is willing to answer.

Character Creation / Allied Races

  • Zandalari Prelates (Paladins) - we'll see later in the expansion
  • Zandalari height - their height has been adjusted to be a bit taller
  • Allied races - allied races will come in pairs at first to keep faction balance, though that could change in the future
  • Allied races in BfA - Highmountain, Nightborne, Dark Iron, Zandalari, Lightforged, Mag'har Orcs, Kul'Tiran - these are a foundattion
  • Current non-Allied race customization additions - not planned on the near horizon, but we'd like to
  • Character creation update - we want to do it, but is not a BfA core feature
  • Heritage armors for older races - no immediate plan, but it's an awesome idea for the long run

Communication

  • Best way to communicate wishes to devs - sincere feedback, data, screenshots to illustrate a point, logs, rational feedback, specificity is often helpful. Make feedback personal over speaking for an entire group.

Classes

  • It's not as much "unpruning",  it's finding the right utility for a class to provide identity and differentiation
  • "Envy is actively healthy" when looking at one class's utility compared to yours as long as it's returned
  • Losing Abilities - in Pandaria it became clear there was too much bloat and too many redundant abilities. Azerite armor will bring that type of feeling without adding more and more mechanically without purpose
  • Focus more on M+ or Raiding - somewhere in the middle to be more diverse and truly balanced the game can be
  • Primary vs Secondary Stats - we need to do this better in BfA - we want iLevel to enable easy and clear upgrades rather than dependence on secondary specs than was present in Legion
  • Some classes with AoE or Single Target Talent Rows - in Legion, too many talent choices were situational - i.e. choosing single target or AoE - that didn't feel good. It wasn't very interesting gameplay. This led to the change.
Artifacts 
  • Talents - Artifact abilities becoming talents - it feels bad, at least in the short term. It's hard to get excited about, but it's a short term decision we're making towards a long-term design goal
  • Legion Legendary Talents + Legion Legendary interaction - will stack until the point where they're underpowered
  • Artifact Replacements - traits will be disabled at 8.0 and you'll use it for awhile before replacing it with a new weapon. Weapon drops are a thing.

PvP

  • CC - it's an ongoing area of change. It's a fine line. If it's too limited, it's a DPS race. If it's too much, it's frustrating. Long cc chains involve multiple players. Players should depend on their teammates to interrupt or help out. 
  • Prestige - is anything going away? We want those rewards to remain and achievable. But we also don't want to keep adding more tiers. We want to keep the cosmetic rewards for PvP to remain.
  • RP / RP-PvP World Defense Channel - we'd like to find a way to bring this back for a small set of servers
Loot
  • there won't be set pieces, personal loot as a universal system makes more sense than "master loot"

Mission Table

  • similar to what we had in Legion, but perhaps a slight bit smaller. 
  • more tied to the war campaign
  • backing away from using them as a time-gating mechanic
  • war resources, world quests
  • tweaks to the mechanics
  • we're happy where the system is in Legion

Mythic +

  • we're happy about how this has turned out in Legion
  • small changes - moving tyrannical and fortified may be moved down to a level 2 keystone where you get one or the other at that level. Higher keys would build on this structure
  • improve the M+ UI with information about progress through a patch or season

Crafting

  • we're not making drastic changes from Legion
  • getting rid of the universal progression system in crafting. We want people to be able to catch up
  • base version of a tradeskill with expansion-specific tradeskills attainable
  • crafted gear on par with raid gear (raid material?) - kind of unclear

Alt Characters

  • BfA more alt friendly? It'll be similar to Legion. It depends on what you're looking to get out of alts.

Social Features

  • communities is a new social function for the circles of people you associate with
  • guilds automatically inherit the new social functions in communities
  • communities are a bit "lighter" than a guild association

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Suzie Ford / Suzie is the Associate Editor and News Manager at MMORPG.com. Follow her on Twitter @MMORPGMom