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Legion Developer Update
Beta starts Thursday at 2 PM PST / 5 PM EST!


Alpha and Beta
  • At Blizzcon, the team said that beta would start in a couple of weeks, but then they realized that players expect beta to be a polished demo. The current state of Legion then was more like an old-school WoW beta, with 2/3rd of specs unplayable and lots of content and features that weren't implemented. It didn't feel right calling that a beta, so the team called it an alpha and still invited a decent number of people.
  • Legion isn't finished, but the team is polishing, tuning, refining, and listening to feedback right now. All of the big pieces are there, so it is time for beta!
  • The current plan is to take the alpha down over the next day, wipe all of the existing characters, send out a large beta invite wave, and then on Thursday at 2 PM PST / 5 PM EST start beta!
  • Players will be able to do the intro to the Broken Shore and faction specific events in the weeks leading up to Legion's release. After Legion releases, you head to Dalaran and pick up things there.
  • There won't be any character copies in Beta initially.

Order Halls
  • The Garrison was a personal space that involved raising an army and building a base.
  • The Class Order Hall is a shared social space where all players of your class can hang out.
  • You are one of the leaders of your class, helping to guide the Order. You can use the Research Tree to shape the direction you want your Order to follow.
  • The Order Hall exists to serve the other world content in Legion, whereas the Garrison was a standalone feature.
  • Most of the stuff you do in your Order Hall will send you out into the world, coming back to get more things to do.
  • The most common reason you will visit your Order Hall while leveling is to upgrade your Artifact.
  • There are custom class campaign quests that will pop up while you are leveling, giving you a class specific storyline.
  • There is a mission system in the Order Hall, but it is a much smaller system than it was in Warlords.
  • Garrisons had dozens of followers that you could collect, but here you have a handful of champions that you can send out on missions.
  • Order Hall missions are less frequent and have a greater impact than Garrison missions did.
  • Garrison missions became a way to easily get almost anything you wanted to get, competing with actually doing content. Crafting materials, armor, currencies, gold, and other things could be earned by playing the game or by pressing mission buttons. Pushing that button was a really compelling option.
  • Order Hall missions will send your champions out to scout dungeons and raids, having them return with a quest that sends you into the dungeon or raid to defeat a target to get a loot reward.
  • Early on you will be spending your Order Hall Resources on customizing your Class Order tech tree. After that you can spend excess resources on missions.
  • The Order Hall doesn't have a lot of customization like Garrisons. You can customize through your research tree and your artifact.
  • The locations used for Order Halls existed before you came along, the aren't yours to decorate!
  • Each Order has a fixed one time epic story arc with multiple chapters that will unfold over the course of leveling. This is unlocked at your own pace, so everyone won't be hitting the same step at the same time.
  • You may be tracking down a traitor within your own ranks if you are a Mage or trying to raise a new set of Four Horsemen to fight the Legion with as a Death Knight.

World Quests
  • At max level, there is a World Quest system with a fixed state for everyone in your region so that you can quest together.
  • World quests are almost like Garrison Missions for players, giving you a choice of things to go and do rather than a list of things for your followers to do.
  • World quests are not daily quests, they can be available for a few hours up to a few days depending on the reward.
  • The most rewarding World Quests will be around for a few days, so players will have time to complete them.
  • There is a daily Emissary that allows you to earn some reputation and a reward chest if you complete four of their quests.
  • In Mists of Pandaria, there were lots of daily quests that gave you a reason to go out into the world, but the reward structure and daily requirement wasn't great. If you missed a day of quests, you would be behind everyone else.
  • There was also lots of repetition in the Mists of Pandaria daily quests, with players rescuing Lao Softfoot from his cage constantly.
  • World quests provide lots of variety with the hundreds of world quests have been created, so you shouldn't see the same quests constantly.
  • The game shouldn't feel like a daily chore. The Emissary system lets you stack up three days of quests so that you don't fall behind if you miss a day.
  • The Legion reputation rewards are also structured better, nothing like Mists of Pandaria.
  • The outdoor questing areas in Warlords ended up having no real context to why you were there doing things.
  • In Legion, all of the World Quests have a little bit of lore and story that go with them, giving you some context as to why you are there and why you are doing what you are doing.

Leveling
  • The level up experience in class zones is pretty broken right now. It is too easy and not paced well.
  • Leveling has been a little bit neglected over the years, becoming worse in part due to balance changes made to the max level game.
  • If you are doing a Level 3 quest right now, you are one or two shotting things, killing them before they can engage with you. This means you are spending more time running around between objectives than you are actually fighting.
  • The team wants to fix the leveling experience and they have done some via hotfixes already.
  • In Vanilla at lower levels combat times were a little bit too long.
  • The team aims for a 12-15 second combat time against a single enemy, which makes sense at max levels.
  • At lower levels when you literally have one skill, 12 - 15 seconds is too long, but the current few second combat time is too short.
  • The team wants to keep the barrier to entry for new and returning players that want to play with their friends reasonably low. This led to them making leveling through previous expansions faster and faster so that you could catch up to friends quickly.
  • Today the barrier to entry is solved by the Character Boost system. If someone buys the latest expansion, they can boost past all of the older expansions and finish leveling.
  • There isn't a need to rush players through leveling anymore. If you are leveling from 1 to 100 it should be a satisfying and well paced experience.
  • The goal isn't to go back to 13 days played or hundreds of hours of leveling, but you shouldn't be outleveling zones before you finish their story. You shouldn't go and do one dungeon and find that the zone you were leveling in before is no longer relevant to you at all.
  • There is a chance that the flexible zone scaling tech might help solve the leveling problem, expanding the level range of zones, giving you a chance to finish the zone before outleveling it.
  • The game should be a fun and epic experience at every level, but it isn't always that kind of an experience right now.

Ion
  • Ion picked Shaman when he stared playing because he wanted to be a hybrid tank. His friends went Horde, so he couldn't be a Paladin.
  • Looking at the Shaman abilities (Shields, Rockbiter, Earth Shock, Toughness, Improved Shield Block), it made sense to a brand new player at the time! He was able to tank up until Level 30 or so and then Warriors had plate.
  • Suramar and Mythic+ Dungeons are the features Ion is most excited about in Legion.

Demon Hunters and Class / Race Combos
  • There are three awesome cinematics during the Demon Hunter leveling experience that you won't be able to see until the content is live.
  • If the team was ever going to do Demon Hunter during World of Warcraft, this was the perfect expansion for it.
  • In the future Demon Hunters might be able to go out in the world and instruct other races to allow them to become Demon Hunters, but for now it is only elves.
  • There are some race and class combinations that don't make a lot of sense, like a Tauren Rogue.

Artifacts
  • Artifacts are weapons of incredible power with rich history and lore behind them.
  • The team started with well known weapons for Artifacts, doing Ashbringer first.
  • A world where everyone had an identical weapon wouldn't work, so they added color and model variants of the weapons. These models had to feel like the original weapon while being visually distinct.
  • After Ashbringer the team looked at other existing weapons in the lore, as well as coming up with new weapons.
  • Some variations are easy to unlock, but others are from doing well in a certain part of gameplay.
  • If you really want to, you can transmog your Artifact to look like other weapons.

Dungeons
  • Previously, dungeons were exciting and rewarding at the start of an expansion for a month or so, but after that the loot wasn't as good as what you could get from Raid Finder.
  • If you beat a Mythic Dungeon, you get a Keystone that allows you to run the Mythic Dungeon at a higher level.
  • The difficulty and rewards scale up with the level of the Mythic dungeon.
  • The team wanted players to be able to run dungeons for the entire expansion, which means dungeons needed some variation in the gameplay beyond health and damage increases to keep them interesting.
  • Affix modifiers for the keystones change up your experience in the dungeon from week to week.
  • There are 8-10 different Affixes that do things to change the dungeon gameplay, like massively reducing tank threat generation (wait for 3 stacks of Sunder!).
  • Another Affix causes non-boss NPCs to explode and empower nearby enemies when they die.
  • Affixes are fixed for the entire world each week, so there won't be any need to find people with "easier" keystones.
  • The higher level your keystone, the more affixes will be on your keystone and the better your loot will be.
  • This will keep dungeons rewarding for the entire expansion.
  • Mythic+ Dungeons are also an alternative progression path to raiding or even a complement to raiding.
  • Right now in Warlords, there isn't much you can do to progress your character on nights when you aren't raiding, but in Legion you can do Mythic+ dungeons on non-raid nights.
  • There isn't any reachable limit for the keystone level.
  • Keystones are leveled by clearing the dungeon within a time limit. The limit is looser than Challenge Mode dungeons, as the point isn't to race through the dungeons, just complete it at a reasonable rate.
  • Each week you will have a chest in your Order Hall with a reward based on the highest level you cleared last week.
  • This chest also contains a new keystone that is around 70% of the level of your previous best, allowing you to get started at a reasonable level rather than starting from Level 1 again every week.
This article was originally published in forum thread: Legion Developer Update started by chaud View original post
Comments 311 Comments
  1. mmoc59b5827c7e's Avatar
    Chat will be flooded by legacy server shit. Hopefully they just perma ban everyone who mentions them.
  1. jmcoo7's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by UcanDoSht View Post
    Chat will be flooded by legacy server shit. Hopefully they just perma ban everyone who mentions them.
    Yeah acting like children will certainly not help their cause, more likely have the opposite effect.
  1. mmocc955237267's Avatar
    It is time mmo-c moves away from the Adobe Flash Player
  1. TheEaterofSouls's Avatar
    Praying for a longer prepatch and an explanation on the 14 months of hfc
  1. apelsinjuice's Avatar
    the legacy server spam in chat lol
  1. TheEaterofSouls's Avatar
    The legacy spam being ignored is pure gold
  1. mmocf93185380c's Avatar
    Best to turn twitch chat off, I think
  1. Scroolooseuk's Avatar
    Its quite bad how 80% of the people in the chat is more interested about legacy servers than Legion itself
  1. Amerissis's Avatar
    I want a beta invite! *willing to sacrifice kitties, doggies, small children, cookies and sanity to any deity that will get me one*
  1. TheEaterofSouls's Avatar
    Beet they'll either restate what was said a few weeks ago or just say no current plans to but we're keeping an eye on feedback
  1. mmoce529c0c189's Avatar
    You hear that boys, coh ain't garrison 2.0.
  1. coprax's Avatar
    has anybody ever managed to actually read the twitch chat? It's so fast...I've always wondered what the purpose of an unreadable chat is.
  1. Teebone's Avatar
    Beta was going to start in November Wiggity-whatnow??
  1. Meat Rubbing Specialist's Avatar
    Uggh. The amount of fuckwits spamming LEGACY! in chat is just boresome.
  1. apelsinjuice's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Teebone View Post
    Beta was going to start in November Wiggity-whatnow??
    they obviously wanted to get legion out alot sooner to not have another 14 month drought but didnt manage it.
  1. Kryos's Avatar
    How many months of playing the game (doing missions and quests) will be needed in Legion to get 2 million Gold?
  1. TheEaterofSouls's Avatar
    I wonder if mobs will scale with Ilvl so raiders don't 2 shot everything.
  1. mmoc587996818c's Avatar
    ion just said there won't be any legacy servers.
  1. Scroolooseuk's Avatar
    I think he has missed the point of the whole question. At least he has admitted "that topic is above my paygrade", in other words its up to Activision and Mike Morhime.
  1. TheEaterofSouls's Avatar
    Until legion releases? So early access demon hunters miss out on cutscenes?

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