Developer Q&A - Ion Hazzikostas
Ion Hazzikostas answered questions today about Patch 7.2. Next month there will be a Patch 7.2.5 Q&A.
Tomb of Sargeras
- Tomb will release sometime in mid to late June.
Broken Isles Pathfinder
- Gear mattering is the default in WoW.
- Timewalking is there to normalize people of all levels so that they can do content together.
- The challenges not scaling means that they will become accessible over time to the entire audience.
- Green fire started off being challenging and eventually became easier.
- The challenges aren't made for a few percent of players. Over the long run more people will be able to enjoy them.
- Early on there is a lot of prestige being able to complete the challenge so early.
- There will be a large number of people that won't be able to do it with Tomb or Argus gear.
- The team didn't have the capacity to make 36 challenges, so they are happy with the ones they created.
- Overall the team is pretty satisfied with how things worked out.
- The team would have wanted to add another couple light requirements to Part 2, such as donate to buildings or kill elites, something that you would have gotten over time.
- Anyone who you see flying right now has done the outdoor content of Legion. Now you can enjoy the perks of flight.
Broken Shore Buildings
- The team doesn't have any plans to turn off the invasions right now, even way down the road.
- It is content for people to do, there isn't really any reason to turn it off.
- The team isn't thinking about changing the frequency of invasions.
- Unlike the pre-expansion patch invasions, these are taking place in zones players are actively using, shutting down other activity in that zone.
- The invasion achievement being required for flying would have been annoying, no one wants to get up at 3 AM for an invasion.
- Timewalking being up all of the time would result in people always or never wanting to do it.
- Contribution rates haven't declined so far. The team was expecting them to, but it hasn't happened yet.
- If contribution rates decline, the team will adjust the amount of supplies needed for the buildings.
Patch 7.2 Content Size
- Part of the reason is storytelling. The team is trying to create a global narrative, the forces of the Alliance, Horde, Legionfall, all building towards an event.
- Tomb will open when it opens for gameplay reasons. It was far too early to open it when Patch 7.2 released.
- The world story builds up towards Tomb opening.
- One option is everyone playing through the content leading up to Tomb opening in a few days, followed by a long wait with nothing.
- The other option is some weekly steps, alternating between meaty quests and filler. The team is aware they are giving us filler as a pacing step.
- Eventually the team realized (late in the PTR cycle) that the zone felt pretty empty with not a lot to do. They accelerated the release of the weekly steps, only leaving filler for the rest of progression.
- They didn't plan out the release of content as well as they should have.
- There are Artifact unlock challenge lines, class mount quests, artifact challenges, which took lots development resources. If you are only playing one character, you may only see 1/12th of the content.
- The team learned from this and will improve in the future.
Tomb Raid Testing
- In terms of the number of quests, creatures, text, and other things added, Patch 7.2 was a very big patch.
- More VO lines were recorded for Patch 7.2 than any previous expansion.
- The team completed a massive amount of content, but that doesn't mean anything to players if they feel like they don't have anything to do.
- What more would you like to see?
- If there were more traditional things like Isle of Thunder story questing, that would only add a few more hours of content. Is that enough?
- What do you expect in a big named patch?
- The right thing for you to do in Patch 7.2 was to go to Broken Shore and do the Artifact things.
- If you log in and see an invasion of a zone, you might want to go there first. The more things there are for you to do on Day 1, the less clear it is what you should do.
- The team could have done a better job of communicating how the content rollout was going to work.
- The class specific content probably won't continue going forward to Patch 7.3.
- More raid testing will take place over the coming weeks: LFR, Heroic, and Mythic.
- Originally the requirement to unlock your class mount was Exalted with Armies of Legionfall, but that requirement has been removed.
- As soon as you complete the Legionfall campaign, you can unlock your class mount!
- It is easier to remove requirements later than it is to add additional requirements.
- Patch 7.2 is what was announced at BlizzCon. It is a patch with a dungeon, zone, raid, PvP brawls, assaults, and more.
- Patch 7.2.5 is micro-holidays, a Timewalking raid, and new legendary items.
- The plan is similar to what happened when Mythic Nighthold opened.
- Week 2 the Mythic Keystone loot cap will go to 15, end of run loot Heroic, end of week Mythic.
- The lag and latency issues are on the team's radar and they want to fix it.
- In Legion, sharding tech was added. This is why the release was so smooth.
- There are some addons that are causing behaviors that don't play well with sharding tech.
- The team doesn't want to break up groups, having people that can't see each other in a group
- The team wants to minimize the number of times you move from one shard to another. In previous expansions you would switch around when filling up a group, which felt bad.
- Addons that are automatically creating groups are causing performance issues.
- Heirloom upgrades are planned for Patch 7.2.5.
- You will see upgrades in an upcoming build.
- In Patch 7.2.5, if you have all of the legendary items for a spec and a legendary drops, it will randomly be for one of your off specs.
- You can still change your loot spec if you want to target a specific spec.
- If the team answers questions about one spec or class, they are answering a question that isn't relevant to 11/12 players watching.
- Getting class information out there is something the team wants to do, maybe AMAs on the WoW subreddit would work.
- Specs feeling like different classes with baseline abilities changing per spec.
- There was a lot of focus on spec identity at the cost of some class identity.
- Having a Fire mage never cast a frost spell might be too much, they are still a mage.
- In some places the team went too far towards spec identity at the cost of class identity.
- Tomb isn't the last raid in Legion. Patch 7.3 takes us to Argus with a new raid zone.
- It doesn't feel great when you need an external buff to be effective or viable.
- Making Disc priests less Innervate reliant is important.
- Some of the classes are still hybrids, with a history and identity that is rooted in offering support to others. There is some value in recognizing this.
- The team wants you to look at your raid composition and be happy that there is a certain class there. There are only a couple of examples of this right now, but the team could add some more.
- If you want to work as a team to maximize effectiveness, this is a nice way to do it. If you goal is to top the meter that is probably less important to you.
- If you are looking to fill a PuG, it would be awesome if you wanted to look for a specific class rather than just grabbing the highest item level player.
- The team may have gone too far with bring the player, not the class. Sunwell was a long time ago and a different world. Not being viable without multiple group buffs is bad, but we are in a different place now.
- The team would rather you take a slightly less geared Warlock rather than a third Hunter.
Mythic+ Dungeon Balance
- The team would like to make these challenges something you can go back and do again if you want.
- The team has nerfed the new ones a lot. They are keeping an eye on statistics, completion rates, times, chest count.
- Things are mostly in a good space right now when it comes to balance.
- Any time a new dungeon is introduced, you are learning a new dungeon. You have already been running the old dungeons many times and know them well, so they are easier even if the new ones are balanced well.
- The new affixes are comparable in difficulty to the old affixes and the team is happy with them.
- Overall the team is happy with the difficulty of Mythic Nighthold.
- There is pretty smooth progression through Nighthold.
- Gul'dan and Elisande might be the targets of a few nerfs.
Order Hall Resources
- There are no plans to add Armies of Legionfall reputation to the invasions.
- If you don't enjoy them, don't do them.
- The team doesn't want to give every activity every reward.
- Invasions give Nethershards, Artifact Power, emissary credit, and reputation. They are already rewarding.
Legendary Item Upgrades
- There isn't anything planned for spending your excess Order Hall Resources on.
- Bonus Rolls are a big sink for resources.
- The team may offer something to spend them on in the future.
- They don't want players to regret not earning more if they add a substantial thing to spend them on in the future.
- Some players are always running low on Order Hall Resources
Black Temple Timewalking
- When Tomb unlocks, the item level ceiling on everything shifts up by 30.
- New legendary items will drop at 970, and there will be a quest to upgrade again.
- Legendary upgrade items will drop right away, you won't need to pick up the quest.
- Once all of your legendary items are upgraded, hopefully the team will be able to hide the quest.
- The upgrade item will take you from 910 to 970 if you haven't upgraded yet.
Paragon Emissary Chests
- This will be tied to the Burning Crusade timewalking event.
- In the future the team would love to have a timewalking raid for every event.
- What raid would you like to see for each expansion's timewalking event.
Artifact Challenge CC
- These chests still mostly reward the same thing, which is underwhelming. The team will discuss this.
- There is a ruleset for some creatures that uses a PvP style CC rule, with diminishing returns.
- You shouldn't be able to CC some of these mobs endlessly, as this would make content trivial.
- Diminishing returns and limited duration are both used to accomplish this.
- Cripple being a four second duration is something the team looked at, but Affliction Warlocks found other ways to do the challenge, even without a specific legendary item.
- Vol'jin is dead, what update do you want?
- Stories are told in a way that makes sense for the narrative.
- This felt like the right time to finish the Alliance story arc.
- The team doesn't want to force symmetry and tell a story where it doesn't feel right.
- Going back to the initial Broken Shore experience, the Horde did have an extra cinematic.
US Realms - World Boss - Si'vash
- You won't be able to use weapon illusions on your Artifacts.
- This was an artistic decision made early on.
- Visual effects have to attach to certain places on weapons, which would constrain their design.
- Most of the weapons aren't designed to have weapon enchant visuals attached.
is up now, so you can head to the Broken Shore for a chance at item level 900 loot, a Frost Relic, or Storm Relic.
US Realms - Nether Disruptor
The Nether Disruptor is active on US realms!