It’s a good thing that the previous expansion, Legion, was the best in the game’s history because Battle for Azeroth is coasting on its success. The major class redesigns that happened then remain in effect (though some are a little worse, and some a little better), and the combination of World Quests and Mythic+ dungeons means there’s always something to do, no matter your skill level or how long you can play.
Two new raids coming after the initial update differ drastically in size and content, depending on which side of the war you’re on. The Battle of Dazar’alor raid sees Alliance players trying to take over a city, but if you’re part of the horde, your version will see you try to defend it. Once you’ve beaten it once, you can then play the other side. The Crucible of Storms raid, on the other hand, is smaller and only consists of two bosses.
At the end of Legion, the titan Sargeras was imprisoned, but not before he plunged his sword into the planet Azeroth. This not only devastated a massive area (much of the desert zone of Silithus is now cracked and scorched), but badly wounded the gestating titan inside. While the heroes managed to ablate the worst of the damage (at the cost of the majority of their artifact weapons' mythic power), the world is still wounded and bleeding a substance called "Azerite," which has great magical potential. The Horde Warchief, Sylvanas Windrunner, attempts to consolidate Horde power on Kalimdor and gain a monopoly on Azerite (which is primarily found at the southern end of the continent). Her campaign to do so, the War of Thorns, formed a pre-launch event for the expansion and ends with the major Night Elf holdings on the continent seized or (in the case of their capital city of Darnassus) annihilated. The Alliance makes a retaliatory strike against her home base, the Undercity, which was formerly the human capital of Lordaeron. This succeeds in driving the Horde out, but before leaving Sylvanas saturates the area with disease and toxins that render it uninhabitable. With this tit-for-tat military exchange, the Horde has almost complete control over Kalimdor, while the Alliance has near-total dominion over the Eastern Kingdoms. With further conflict inevitable, Battle for Azeroth takes the two factions to the continents of Kul Tiras and Zandalar to recruit new allies in order to turn the tides of war.
War Mode: War Mode can be turned on at level 30 through your talent window, and will give you 10% bonus XP. You will, however, be attackable by players of the opposing faction, but changes have been made so that all players have a fair shot in a fight and even low-level players can kill much higher level players, and at least not get ganked and one shotted. Note: As of patch 8.1, you can get an additional call to arms bonus with war mode on if your faction is underepresented.
You earn a large rested experience bonus when you log out in this rest areas. This gives you a massive 200-percent bonus to experience gain from most actions (though experience from quests isn’t included). The amount of rested experience you earn increases the longer you’re logged off, and your experience bar will be blue (instead of purple) while you have the bonus.
This was a seriously entertaining read. Your unapologetic style of writing about this topic fit so perfectly. Unfortunately, I had to choke back a laugh more than once at work and now a few of my coworkers are looking at me funny. . .Speaking of which, special shout-out to that Fortnite entry. Anyway, I'd personally like to add Hello Neighbor to the list. (I know it technically launched in Dec 2017, but it continued assaulting new consoles in 2018 so I'm arguing it counts.) What started as an unexpectedly fun balance between straight-up goofiness and an intriguingly dark backdrop transformed into an unfinished mess I cannot fathom to this day. Even the betas and alphas added new problems before fixing any of the old ones like it was nobody's business. At least YouTube playthroughs provided ample warning on that one.P.S. I highly recommend videogamedunkey's review of Super Seducer to anyone willing to listen.
jame, addon version or your guide is F$%&ING AWESOME, THANK YOU. there is a part in the first section of the guide where im instructed to take shindrell's not to kayneth stillwind, but there is no instruction to pick up that quest on the way through astranaar, if i find anything else like this ill let you know, love your guide, thanks for taking the time to put it together!!
Dugi and Zygor both had their guides updated before Mist of Pandaria was released and both guides are kept updated with all the patches and changes to the game. Dugi is way faster with updates and has a lot more. Zygor seems to hold out and then do a big update. With new content such as guides etc, Dugi is definitely leading the way with Zygor usually many months behind. Zygor now offers the same number of guides as Dugi but it took them a long time to catch up.
Leveling used to be a treat in WoW. New, unique abilities drove you forward and made getting past the horrible grind worth it to some extent. Now it just feels like everything is set to grind. More than it used to be. Once it was tolerable, rewarding even, but now you grind to unlock an allied race through reputations barely connected to most of these races, only to have to level up that character to get their unique armor set (compelling you to not just boost your character and instead suffer through the slog of ANOTHER group of alts), then you get back to current content and grind some more with a random chance to drop the item you need to get your ilvl up to finally enjoy the single warfront available (as I write this).
There’s a lot of #content in the new expansion. It’s mostly locked behind a variety of gates, some of which players can’t even control. Warfronts are the best example. You might assume joining a Warfront is a simple matter of opening the group finder. Wrong! Warfronts are only accessible for a week at a time. It’s not precisely clear how often that week will come around (it’s based both on a time gate and on the opposing faction gathering resources) but, as of right now, it looks likely to be available just one week out of every four.
I've identified a pesky bug that had me confused for months now. I would get serious slowdowns (from 60fps to as low as 20fps) whenever the dugi waypoint arrow was active and I started moving across the map (especially quickly like flying on mounts/flying masters etc.). I tried everything, and all that could fix it was clicking "Remove all waypoints", so that the arrow turned off. I thought maybe the arrow needed to constantly update locations/routes, and a new game update had perhaps broken that feature a bit.
Once a week, you will be able to open a chest rewarding between one and three items, with the number and quality based on the difficulty of the highest M+ dungeon that you finished the week before. Unlike the end-of-dungeon chest, this chest can contain Azerite items. Gear from the weekly chest starts at 355 and can increase to 380, or 340/385 for Azerite pieces.
Potions serve more utilitarian purposes, and it's up to you to decide whether to make use of them. The most common is the Swiftness Potion, which can provide you a handy boost in speed while going after annoying quest objectives indoors. These are generally MASSIVELY overpriced, because people know how useful they are. I opted not to spend the gold since Warriors are already fairly mobile, but slower classes may benefit greatly from these.
Each of those modes existed long before this latest expansion; raiding is a basic concept in MMOs, and Mythic+ was added in World of Warcraft’s last expansion. The problems with Battle for Azeroth’s endgame come from the systems it adds, which most often artificially gate progress where most of the fun can be found. If raids and Mythic+ are the carrot, we’re about to talk about the stick.
The expansion is set immediately after the events of Legion. Two continents have been added within the Great Sea between the Eastern Kingdoms and Kalimdor: Kul Tiras, one of the major human kingdoms, and Zandalar, the homeland of Azeroth's trolls. While the Alliance and Horde will initially travel to one continent respectively, both continents will be available to both factions at level 120.
Island Expeditions: 3-Player co-op with optional 3v3 gameplay. Players will explore uncharted isles across the Great Sea. There is azerite and other unclaimed resources bubbling to the surface that is highly sought by both factions. Complete varied and dynamic objectives with a large variety of challenges to overcome. Race against advanced AI opponents designed to thwart players using tactical and strategic moves that consistently change. Optionally, players can choose to race against other players, creating a 3v3 PvP environment.
Valid pieces for Azerite empowerment are available for the chest, shoulder, and head slots of all classes. This equipment has multiple tiers of that can be unlocked, represented by a series of concentric wheels with icons representing individual powers; as individual powers are selected, they rotate into slots at the top of the interface, activating the selected benefit and locking out the others unless the player pays to reset their decision. Outer rings offer multiple choices, some based around the character's class and specification, others around the zone or circumstances in which the gear was acquired. The innermost circle offers no such options, instead being a boost to the level of the item itself, and thus providing a flat all-around benefit.
Warfronts are larger, 20-man challenges that take inspiration from the Warcraft strategy games. Players are deployed on the Warfront to collect resources, destroy enemy troops, construct buildings, and eventually launch an assault to take over the enemy base. These battles take 20 to 40 minutes to complete and, unlike Island Expeditions, don’t offer a PvP mode.
Most of the time you spend leveling will involve questing and slaying monsters, but there’s also a lot of travel. Travel earns you little experience (you do gain a bit for discovering new areas), so it’s wise to keep travel to a minimum. The new level scaling system, which scales zones to your level within a preset range, helps with that. You can choose what zones you want to experience and stick with them until you finish their quests.
Mythic+ has some similarity to raiding, but it’s designed for just five players, instead of the 10-to-30 that can make up a raid. This mode tasks players with clearing the game’s dungeons, but with specific changes that make them harder, scaling up until it’s impossible for groups to finish. Players receive a keystone in their inventory that assigns them their dungeon, one of the game’s 10, and gives the dungeon a level. This determines how difficult enemies are and what effects might make them harder. If the group completes the keystone in time, they get a new, higher-level stone; if they, don’t they get a lower-level stone.
The Alliance are able to unlock the void elves (exiled blood elves who can tap into shadow magic, trained by Alleria Windrunner after her experiences on Argus), Lightforged draenei (draenei members of the Army of the Light who fought the Legion on Argus), Dark Iron dwarves (fire-blooded cousins of the in-game dwarves of Ironforge), and Kul Tiran humans (larger, more heavyset versions of the in-game humans of Stormwind).
Set sail for the previously unmapped isles of Azeroth. Battle in groups of three as you race against cunning rival intruders—or enemy players—to collect the island’s resources. Constantly evolving challenges await as you traverse frozen landscapes near Northrend, open the gates of an abandoned Gilnean castle, navigate a war between elementals and more. Tides of Vengeance adds two new Island Expeditions to the mix and two new random events, as well as updated rewards.
The Horde will now control most of Kalimdor, and the Alliance most of the Eastern Kingdoms. For a low-level character the quests and storylines won't change, but for high-level players many zones will see changes via phasing. Teldrassil is burned and Undercity is in ruins as the story progresses by phasing. At max level Arathi Highlands and Darkshore are phased to be updated to reflect their status as locations for Warfronts.
This expansion suffers from the Warlords of Draenor (WoD) effect, initially, players will think this is a great expansion but upon investing some time into the game they'll realize this game is a disaster. The pre-patch should have been our first warning with how poorly designed and executed that fiasco was, but beyond that, let's look at what the expansion itself offers:
Heirlooms: Heirlooms are the best source of bonus XP for leveling. All slots can be gotten pretty easily now, except the rings. The time you need to spend to get the rings if you haven’t gotten a level 3 shipyard in WoW is way too long, so getting the rings is generally not worth it. Having all your heirloom gear will boost XP by 55%. Generally, you want heirloom gear with crit on for leveling as you want to kill mobs in a few hits as possible
Havoc in Battle for Azeroth has gone through somewhat of a maturing process, trying to focus more on the talent tree and allowing for more diverse options in gameplay approaches, alongside tightening up some of the more loose aspects of the original implementation. It still remains a predominantly builder spender style rotation and is largely Global Cooldown locked. The core hook is making the most of your Fury pool and reacting to unpredictable gains, ensuring you use high burst cooldowns and windows to push yourself even further. On top of that, it comes with a variety of mobility and defense tools, creating a versatile toolkit with some unique abilities that can be used in a variety of ways.
The guide should advance to the point where you are in the zone's progression. There are a few steps that can-not autocomplete and they should (hopefully) have comments to the effect of -- you need to manually check this step off. -- For some reason you have to click these steps off 2-3 times to work. (the first time will move the tom-tom arrow, the 2nd time unchecks it and the 3rd click advances the guide).