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  1. #1

    If Burning Legion is invading Azeroth ... what Zones will we be fighting them in?

    (For purposes of this discussion, two things are stipulated:
    one: Wrathion is telling the truth; the Burning Legion are coming, and we will be fighting them in the next XPac
    two: Instead of creating new zones to fight them, Blizzard will use phasing similar to what's going on in 5.3 to transform zones on Azeroth into areas where we'll be fighting the Legion and any associated baddies they pick up
    If you disagree with either of these stipulations, please don't participate in this thread as you will not be able to do so constructively)
    ADDED FOR CLARITY:
    I want to talk about candidate zones. I don't want to talk about phasing or new continents or subscriptions lost. The point of the comment was to keep discussion solely focused on candidate zones, but obviously the need for people to express their opinion on matters that aren't being discussed is too strong to stop.

    So I've been thinking about stuff and after reaching the above conclusions, I'm wondering what zones would be best suited for fighting the Burning Legion. My guess is that in most cases the BL will have already landed and possibly even conquered and we'll be fighting back.

    I'm also thinking that Blizzard will do this for 10 zones in the game; 2 zones a level. Two reasons for this: qq about having to do the same zones over and over in MoP and to a lesser extent Cata (although the Deepholm requirement was worse than anything in MoP as far as I'm concerned), and also because the zones on Azeroth are smaller than the ones we see in Outland, Northrend, and Pandaria.

    A few of the zones I'm favoring I'm doing so because of how they're currently developed (or not developed as the case may be). I'm also trying to decide if Blizzard is going to opt for Cata-style non-contiguous zones. I believe the lack of cohesion in story between the zones was a huge criticism in Cata, but I feel like that'll be tolerated because I think people will like seeing zones they know transformed. That said, I'm going to pair zones as best I can so that there are no zones way off by themselves.

    ---

    Eastern Kingdoms: Arathi Highlands, Preceded by Wetlands and Hillsbrad Foothills.

    Arathi Highlands seems like a no-brainer to me. The zone is already pretty empty since the Cata revamp. But there are two other key aspects of Arathi that appeal to me as a choice:
    1) Horde vs Alliance friction - yes, even after the uneasy cooperation to overthrow Garrosh, there are still flashpoints in the Alliance vs Horde conflict. The Forsaken already have a small foothold. The Dwarves are trying to secure the Thandol Span and take back Dun Modr, and the Wildhammer may come down to help. The dwarf farmer on the coast. And someone has to cap the flag on Stables in the Basin. So if Blizzard wanted to keep the friction in game, here's a good place to do it.
    2) The existing architecture: I already mentioned Thandol Span, but Thoradin's Wall and Stromgarde also provide already existing in-game elements that could be leveraged by either side in the conflict.

    Arathi Highlands would be the second zone of the pair. The first zone would be Wetlands for Alliance and Hillsbrad for Horde. (So yes, my "pair" of zones actually encompasses three zones) I originally considered Wetlands alone as the paired zone, but I can't imagine Blizzard letting the Horde across the Thandol Span at this time (the original concept had Arathi as the first zone for Horde and the second zone for Alliance, so they'd be questing in different directions).

    Wetlands would be good because it's wide-open and there's a lot of space for Blizzard to work with. Hillsbrad is less "ideal" from that standpoint, but it works similar in concept. And who knows, maybe Orkus will get a mention.

    I love this area as because I feel it works on every level for the fight against the Burning Legion: they land in Arathi and push out West and South threatening Sylvanas and Khaz Modan.

    I wanted to duplicate this effect in Kalimdor, but I feel Northern Barrens is out of consideration due to 5.3. Besides, we already have three zones nearby with Burning Legion concerns …

    But we’ll save Mt Hyjal for a raid tier because everyone is probably sick of leveling in it. Instead, we’ll fight the Burning Legion in:

    ---

    Northern Kalimdor: Felwood and Ashenvale
    (Note: From here on out I’m going to go into less detail for time reasons and also because my developed explanation for the EK zones should give the gist of what I’m thinking)
    If you’ve ever quested or camped the Minfernal in Felwood then you already know that traces of the Burning Legion remain. Ashenvale also some elements. In addition, these zones threaten Mt Hyjal, Moonglade, and Orgrimmar, ensuring all sides get involved.

    ---

    Southern Kalimdor: Silithus and Ahn’Qiraj

    Honestly, I’m not very happy with this choice except I love the idea of the big open empty Ahn’Qiraj area turned into an outdoor questing zone. But the area could really use a revamp to bring it up to the current time and here’s a nice way for Blizzard to do it. If the two zones aren’t large enough, Feralas could be added to the mix, although I like that even less because of the zone similarity with Ashenvale (plus they’d have to fix the geography to allow transit). I’m not considering Un’goro because of the next zone pair. It’s a shame that Desolace isn’t swapped with Feralas on the map.

    This area does give Blizzard the opportunity to give us other non-demon mobs to fight as it could simply be AQ has “awoken” at the Burning Legion’s behest and the Cenarion Front (look! A new faction!) needs our help.

    ---

    Northrend: Sholozar Basin and Northeast Borean Tundra

    Since the Northrend zones are so large, the need for pairing is diminished. That said, I don’t think Blizzard wants to rephase all of Sholozar Basin (they’ll probably ignore the northeast corner of SB), so we’ll pair it with the Borean Tundra.

    I’ll be honest here: I just want to fight alongside the Wolvar again.

    But besides that, the zone is actually pretty unoccupied – even the scourge are absent except at the border with Icecrown. I can easily see the BL landing here. We’d start in Borean Tundra from the already existing Alliance and Horde quest hubs, and we need to fight the Burning Legion and stop them from digging up whatever is at the bottom of River’s Heart that absorbs all the water rushing into it.

    Bonus: Wintergrasp could be reused as a world pvp bg.

    There are a couple problems with this zone, however.

    First off, what sort of presence is even left in Northrend? Is Fizzcrank Airstrip still in operation? Are the keeps still occupied?

    Also, does Blizzard want to take the war to another map, or do they want to keep it all in EK and Kalim?

    If Blizzard does want to present this as an incursion that threatens all of Azeroth, I see them having no choice but to bring Northrend into play. But doesn’t that mean Pandaria should come into play as well?

    … you thought this was a segue into a paired set of Pandaria zones, didn’t you? Well you’re wrong!

    ---

    The Final Pairing: Unknown – Or Not A Pairing?

    I don’t think it’ll be Outland, but I definitely could be wrong there.

    I don’t think it’ll be Pandaria, but like Mt Hyjal maybe they’ll save it for a raid tier.

    The one thing we’re missing is a capital city truly threatened, but I have another idea for that which includes the words “world boss”, “random capital” and “shared loot lockout”.

    So what other possibilities are there?

    Well let’s consider what we’ve mapped out so far as to what zones you’ll do at a certain level:

    90 – Hillsbrad/Wetlands or Ashenvale
    91 – Arathi or Feralas
    92 – Silithus or Borean Tundra
    93 – Ahn’Qiraj or Sholozar Basin

    The numbering may be confusing, but there’s only one more level left, 94. So really, we don’t need a pairing, just a choice of two zones. (Also, it doesn’t have to be 94; it could 90 or 92)

    If we go with a non-pairing, these zones seem best suited to me:

    Kalimdor: Desolace

    Already a small Burning Legion presence. Nice wide open map. And more rep with the Cenarion Front (I’m totally riding my Cenarion Hippogryph the entire time to mock them since I’ve already got exalted with them twice)!

    Eastern Kingdoms: Blasted Lands

    Makes a lot of sense, doesn’t it?

    ---
    So those are my ideas. Let me know what you think or what other zones you’d consider as good places to fight the Burning Legion in.
    Last edited by chrth; 2013-05-03 at 03:18 PM.

  2. #2
    I don't think as much they would put revamped zones into wrath areas, seeing as they are fairly recent in terms of the game, and if I had to think of some zones it would probably come down to the ones that are already housing/have housed any traces of the legion. Blasted lands makes perfect sense with the dark portal, Desolace does have the burning legion so possibly, Ashenvale maybe? Ahn'Qiraj doesn't really seem fitting(Did you mean Silithus?), Feralas possibly. I would like to see Blasted Lands and Ashenvale, maybe Desolace. Maybe they could add a new zone to outlands or update it and phase it to higher than 90, since that was the first major encounter with the Legion in WoW. Thinking, maybe toss in some stuff into Orc/Night Elf and Draenei/Blood Elf zones as some bonus little stuff and maybe updating Isle of Quel'danas.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Myrandron View Post
    Ahn'Qiraj doesn't really seem fitting(Did you mean Silithus?)
    Both zones. The open area of AQ is actually as large as some zones, although the heavy presence of walls makes there less room than is typical in a zone.

    Outland feels like a final raid tier or a next X-Pac solution (say, the defeated remainder of the Burning Legion escape back through the Dark Portal and we pursue them). It's certainly possible it'll be a leveling zone, but I'd think we wouldn't get there until after we cleaned up Azeroth.

    Regarding the Draenei/Blood Elf/Isle of QD - I guess the last is an option for a "standalone" zone at 94. The problem with the other two is that they're starting zones. But I guess technically Northern Barrens is a starting zone too (since it's not considered "neutral" for pvp reasons). If it's going to be either of them, I imagine it'd be Ghostlands and Eversong Woods revamped. But I can't imagine an Alliance army presence there.

    I guess the starting zone for Draenei and Blood Elves could be revamped to be updated (yay! Exodar is fixed!). But that seems like a lot of programming energy that could be better used elsewhere (altho I guess the same logic applies to the Pandaren/Worgen/Goblin starting zones).

  4. #4
    Herald of the Titans
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    90 - Darkshore or Duskwood
    91 - Un'goro Crater or Western Plaguelands
    92 - Dustwallow Marsh or Zul'Drak
    93 - Loch Modan or Storm Peaks
    94 - Hinterlands or Thousand Needles

  5. #5
    No, I want new zones.

    What if low level people would like to do quests there?

  6. #6
    Herald of the Titans
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eazy View Post
    What if low level people would like to do quests there?
    "Blizzard will use phasing similar to what's going on in 5.3"

  7. #7
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    people prefer brand new zones rather than "re-hashed" content
    We have faced trials and danger, threats to our world and our way of life. And yet, we persevere. We are the Horde. We will not let anything break our spirits!"

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Eazy View Post
    No, I want new zones.

    What if low level people would like to do quests there?
    Phasing. Just like the 5.3 quests and mobs will not interact with the Northern Barrens questing of low level hordes. I actually think part of the motivation in 5.3 is to test the technology before making an x-pac that is heavily dependent on it. I know they want to fix the issues that plagued Icecrown with players being out-of-phase and unable to group up, this points to a staged phasing in the zones (e.g., take back Menethil Harbor, defeat an encampment, etc.)

    ---------- Post added 2013-05-03 at 10:22 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Dreknar20 View Post
    people prefer brand new zones rather than "re-hashed" content
    Your theory is that the Burning Legion is going to invade and not go anywhere in the known world?

  9. #9
    Field Marshal SynthesisSurge's Avatar
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    I would actually think that while the BL might not land in Quel'Thalas, they will certainly make it a goal to take down Quel'Danas - or more precisely the Sunwell.

    Why, you ask? Because, maybe besides Vale of Eternal Blossom, it is one of the most concentrated points of power/magic in Azeroth at the moment. More than that, it is partly a fount of holy magic - holy magic that certain people can use to fight back the BL

  10. #10
    Not gonna happen. They won't rehash old zones again.. It will hurt on Subscriptions.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Elves4everr View Post
    I would actually think that while the BL might not land in Quel'Thalas, they will certainly make it a goal to take down Quel'Danas - or more precisely the Sunwell.

    Why, you ask? Because, maybe besides Vale of Eternal Blossom, it is one of the most concentrated points of power/magic in Azeroth at the moment. More than that, it is partly a fount of holy magic - holy magic that certain people can use to fight back the BL
    The problem with Quel'danas is one of repetition; how do you differentiate what you're doing in the current xpac from what you did back in TBC?

    That said, it may be best suited to use as a Scenario.

  12. #12
    hm, if they flee through the dark portal that means outland would have changed too as currently there is no burning legion on the other side.
    so if they want to do some burning legion invasion based on outland again they have to do some phasing there too which means a lot of the x-pack could take also place in outland.

    I remember some blue said one time in the future they want to revisit outland to give it an overhaul and also revisit the draenei story.
    this would fit perfectly in a burning legion x-pac

    also gc posted some time ago that one of the bad decision of cataclysm was to split up the zones and place them all over the old world.
    it made sense for a global cataclysm but it was something people disliked.
    so I don't think they will do it again.
    however some event like burning legion invasion all over azeroth would fit better. it is short and not permanent and similar to the naxx events in the end of classic when you had to fight against undead in the plaguelands and it would be like what we get in 5.3 with the stuff going on in the barrens.

  13. #13
    I think Blizzard would rather simply invent a new continent and let that be the staging grounds for the Burning Legion. And then they'll have a world event that goes along perhaps a few very small changes to 1 or 2 existing zones, but nothing major.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Dotmore View Post
    Not gonna happen. They won't rehash old zones again.. It will hurt on Subscriptions.
    No one is rehashing old zones. It's just the terrain being reused.

    Also "Yes, Blizzard finally gave me a Burning Legion xpac, but since they didn't add any new zones to level in I'm quitting the game" doesn't seem like a likely response from the gaming population, but that's just me.

  15. #15
    High Overlord kidgamer's Avatar
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    If the Burning Legion is the theme for the next expac, maybe they could invade zones in Azeroth as a world event leading to the launch (like the scourge invasion). But I definitely want new zones to explore while I level to 95.

  16. #16
    High Overlord Mshadowz's Avatar
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    Also "Yes, Blizzard finally gave me a Burning Legion xpac, but since they didn't add any new zones to level in I'm quitting the game" doesn't seem like a likely response from the gaming population, but that's just me.
    It seems like a VERY likely response.

  17. #17
    Stood in the Fire Kivana's Avatar
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    While i like the idea of the Burning Legion invading/attacking Azeroth (and i bet we will see it sometime before we head to their home planet) i just can't see Blizzard doing something so large. They would have to make it available for all character levels so that nobody is left out due to being a 'lowbie' or new player.

    This would mean phasing, or re doing any zone the BL invaded. After the massive re-vamp of the 1-60 questing zones i just can't see it happening.
    Don't forget that Blizz got a lot of stick for the 'unwanted' revamp and doing it again would be bonkers.

    What we are likely to see is the BL invading in waves that we have to defeat before their commander turns up and we get to slap it back through whatever portal it came from. Where these waves show up would most likely be the Capital cities and the surrounding area.

    You know the drill, we get a quest to see WTF is going on in X area of the map, kill mobs/sabotage portal/gather items from mobs and return to base for more quests.
    We do this for a week/month before we kill the 'commander' boss and get to pick a raid quality item for our help.

  18. #18
    Field Marshal SynthesisSurge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kidgamer View Post
    If the Burning Legion is the theme for the next expac, maybe they could invade zones in Azeroth as a world event leading to the launch (like the scourge invasion). But I definitely want new zones to explore while I level to 95.
    I could actually see it happen as a world event. I remember in a blue post quite recently they said that they were surprise how 'angry' people were with no world even leading up to MoP. So it's quite possible they will have a Burning Legion invasion as a taste of what to come, and then us going to them to fight. *Shrug*

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Mshadowz View Post
    It seems like a VERY likely response.
    We'll have to disagree on the matter. Most people just level to max as fast as they can. As long as the endgame takes place in "new" areas I don't foresee people dropping the game because they have to spend time in Arathi to ding a level.

    EDIT: Because it's come up:
    My view for the pre-xpac event is the arrival of the invasion itself. In the event we fight off the forward forces attacking the capitals and major areas while the BL consolidates its position in the areas we end up questing in. So essentially the xpac leveling experience is fighting back to retake the portions of Azeroth that is under BL control from the pre-xpac event.

    I'm honestly surprised people are against the idea of an immersive experience. The concept of the BL coming from space, establishing a foothold on a new continent, and then us going to fight them there just seems boring. Why wouldn't someone want to take back Hillsbrad from the Burning Legion in the name of Orkus?
    Last edited by chrth; 2013-05-03 at 02:41 PM.

  20. #20
    that idea would be a disaster, Cata already proved that rehashed content is a failure, and there were at least new zones scattered around Azeroth, what you suggest would be even more stupid.
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