Rise of Azshara Preview: Heart of Azeroth Updates

Rise of Azshara Content Preview Live Stream

Patch 8.2 - Water Strider Changes
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
A small clarification to our plans with Mount Equipment–
Hitting level 100 on one character will unlock this system. Once unlocked, the system will be available to all characters, and the equipment pieces themselves will require level 20. If your goal is to have waterwalking while leveling, you can just enable the waterwalking Mount Equipment (there will be one available via Anglers reputation that will be bind-on-account), and it’ll work exactly as before, with the benefit of making all of that character’s mounts walk on water

Taliesin and Evitel Patch 8.2 Information
The popular Youtubers Taliesin and Evitel got to visit Blizzard headquarters to play Rise of Azshara and have a lot of new information not seen in the livestream!


  • Heart of Azeroth
    • The Heart of Azeroth UI shown in the live stream is unfinished and will have a lot more as BfA progresses.
    • In between the major and minor abilities are smaller traits to unlock similar to the Legion artifact.
    • There are unique essences for each type of content, such as one for reputation grinds, raiding, dungeons, etc.
    • You get a new rank for each of these as you progress in the content relevant to it. Example - Rank 1 for honored, Rank 2 for revered, etc for reputation essence.
    • Each essence has a major and minor effect. If you place an essence into the major slot, it will get both benefits. In a minor slot, it will only get the minor benefit.
    • The visual effect for max rank will be impressive.
    • All essences will work in PvP according to Holinka.
    • Some of the essence effects affect a spec/class specific spell.
    • Blizzard expects people to have about 6 different essences unlocked by the end of the first week.
    • Essences work exactly like talents, meaning they can be freely swapped in a rested zone or with a tome.
    • There are new raid and dungeon specific Azerite Traits, dungeon ones being from Mechagon.
    • By the end of 8.3 you will probably have 4 minor essence slots and possibly 2 major.
  • Mechagon
    • Mechagon is bigger than the Timeless Isle, but not as vertical. Nazjatar is HUGE.
    • Mechagon and Nazjatar will be fully open on day 1, while the dungeon and raid will launch either the second or third week.
    • The Mecha-wheel mount special has the wheel spin around while you do a backflip with fire effects.
    • The Mecha-wheel is the reward for completing the meta achievement for Mechagon.
    • Mechagon is a grinding island, with the potential to be an endless grind if you want.
    • The Prince of Mechagon is the leader of the resistance you do quests for on the island.
    • Constructions pop up all over the island that you need to donate resources to build up.
    • Almost all mobs on the island drop relevant resources for the constructions.
    • Mechagon is a big "collect stuff for rewards" island.
    • Mechagon is not timegated, but it is impossible to complete it in one day.
    • Mechagon has the most secrets per square inch than any other place in the game.
    • The gameplay affecting systems like customizing your trinket will not take too long. Collecting all the rewards, however, will take some time.
    • Resources are not just used for building, but for progressing in the island's secrets.
    • War Mode is enabled in Mechagon, but the central hub is neutral and you will be attacked by guards if you initiate combat with the opposite faction. The turrets are not PvP enabled, but it seems like Ion wanted them to be now that Taliesin mentioned it.
    • The trinket has slots like gem slots, and you collect schematics and recipes to build punch cards, or the cards themselves to slot into the trinket.
    • They start by just giving stat boosts, but eventually will also give you effects as you find better ones.
    • There will be the return of "actual" rares that don't pop up often.
    • You can paint and customize your mechano-cat mount by earning resources.
  • Operation: Mechagon Dungeon
    • The Mechagon dungeon starts outside and eventually you move into the heart of the city.
    • There is a stealth portion of the dungeon where you have to stand on vents to keep hidden.
    • The loot in Mechagon will be similar item level compared to Karazhan/Emerald Nightmare, however, there will be unique schematics for punch cards in the dungeon that mythic raiders will want.
    • Some of the punch cards for the trinket interact with the Azerite traits from Mechagon.
  • Nazjatar
    • Nazjatar is the big story focused island.
    • The Nazjatar zone is not really time gated, but the story will progress over weeks.
  • Flying
    • Pathfinder Part II will take as long as it did in Legion, involving rep from both Nazjatar and Mechagon.
  • Mount Equipment
    • The Mount Equipment that prevents being dazed is created by blacksmiths.
    • These equipment slots are like gems. They last until you replace them with another one.
    • If you have the Water Strider mount, you receive the water walking mount equipment for free in the mail on patch day.
    • Furthermore, if you already have the strider you can buy the water walking mount equipment for a substantially reduced price from the vendor who sold you the mount.
    • The Water Strider will no longer be able to walk on water without the equipment slot.
    • The Sky Golem will still be able to harvest herbs, but it will not benefit from mount equipment.
    • Natural abilities like tanks not getting dazed or Death Knights water walking will stack with equipment.
    • More mount equipment items will be added in the future.
    • Lvl 100 is the current requirement to equip mount equipment, but it will likely be changed. (confirmed that you need to have a level 100 character and then the equipment can be used from level 20 on all other toons, with the equipment being BoA.)
  • Azshara's Eternal Palace
    • The underwater boss is the second boss in Azshara's Eternal Palace. There is no mechanic that requires 3D mechanic knowledge. The boss has platforms that you fight on and you basically swim through a gauntlet to get to him on other platforms.
    • Swim speed is actually the same as run speed without a mount.
    • Breath is not an issue in the fight.
    • Druids will have a speed advantage in the fight during platform transitions with aquatic form.
    • We will know who the final boss of Battle for Azeroth is after the events of this raid.
    • Taliesin will reveal who they think the final boss of the expansion is in their weekly video.
    • Lady Priscilla Ashvane is a boss in Azshara's Eternal Palace and her model is a sea giant.
    • At one point in the fight, Ashvane comes out of this form, but her new form is a secret.
  • Miscellaneous
    • They both felt that the developers really do feel like making the best game possible for players and care about player feedback.


4FanSites Patch 8.2 Information
German fansite 4FanSites also has some new information form their time at Blizzard for the 8.2 announcements.


  • Blizzcon will happen this year.
  • Housing is a big topic at Blizzard. The developers are still thinking about how to implement it so that it does not feel so clumsy.
  • Blizzard wants to change warforged and titanforged items, but they don't have a solution in place for it. Without this system, some players would have their maximum gear after only a few weeks and thus have nothing left to aim for gear wise.
  • The team has discussed having only 1 reroll per week, but have it be an 100% chance to get an item.
  • There will be new pets to fight as well as a new Pet Battle Dungeon.


Method Patch 8.2 Information
Method also went to Blizzard and have some information from their visit.


  • The new resource gathering system at various points around the island provides small goals to work towards by yourself or with friends.
  • The new Heart of Azeroth traits are mostly shared between everyone, with a few spec specific traits.
  • The system is similar to glyphs, with one Major and two Minor slots. You start with just the one Major slot, then level up the Heart of Azeroth to unlock the Minor slots.
  • You fill the slots with essences, which can be found from world quests, reputations, PvP, raids, or various other sources.
  • Essences have ranks, with the top rank being a cosmetic effect.
  • Essences have a Major and Minor power. You get both powers when an essence is in a Major slot.
  • Essences are unique, so you can't stack 3 of the same essence.
  • Essences can be respeced at no cost in a rested area.
  • Mount equipment items work similar to gems, they can be swapped but the old one will be consumed in the process.
  • Stormwall Blockade to Jaina had too much of an increase in difficulty, but this was due to the bosses before Jaina being too easy rather than Jaina being too hard.
  • Crucible of Storms starts at middle of Battle of Dazar'alor difficulty, with the last boss being similar to Jaina in difficulty


Forbes Developer Interview
Forbes released another article with a bit of information prior to the live stream today.


  • Crucible of Storms begins to set the stage for what is going on beneath the waves
  • Pathfinder Part 2 allows players to fly in Nazjatar, Mechagon, Kul Tiras, and Zandalar
  • The world is more intimidating when you can't just fly over everything. You also get a better sense of place when exploring from the ground.
  • There may be restrictions on flying if you have recently been in War Mode combat, or some other restrictions that aren't overly punishing.
  • War Mode has been successful. In the past you may have quested next to someone of the opposite faction and not fought, but now both people have opted in to War Mode and fights are more common.
  • Tortollan quests had a few more quests added to the pool so that you have a choice and can avoid a heavily camped quest if you don't want to fight.
  • War Mode participation has increased over the last couple months.
  • The team doesn't have a solution to the raid faction imbalance right now, but there may be something to learn from with the War Mode incentives. Any incentives would need to be balanced to avoid encouraging massive faction migration.
  • It's a question of, how can we build a healthier high-end Mythic Plus scene, or a healthier high-end raid scene on the Alliance side, among the Alliance population. Horde and Alliance populations are actually well balanced across the world, there is just less of a raiding community on the Alliance side.
  • War Mode offers bonus rewards for the outnumbered faction proportional to how outnumbered you are, which is because they face a greater challenge. An Alliance Mythic Plus group and a Horde Mythic Plus group are doing the exact same dungeon with the exact same difficulty once they're in it, so giving one more rewards than the other doesn't make sense.
  • It's very unlikely we'll see a mercenary system for PvE, as the divide is such a core part of the story and game. It also does more to help queue times, as it switches a player from one side of the queue to another. Mercenary mode doesn't let you make social connections, so it wouldn't help the long term health of the PvE community on a faction.
  • The Heart of Azeroth, Islands, and Island Expedition rewards were some of the challenging new systems. The team made the short term changes that they could make with Tides of Vengeance.
  • From just a few weeks in, the team has been planning to shift the Heart of Azeroth to a more Legion artifact style. This gives a longer-term progression system that offers a lot more choice, a lot more customization, goals to work towards, and choose from.
  • The team heard the frustration at the lack of agency and progression with the Heart of Azeroth.
  • The team wants to lessen the negative feeling of bad RNG when it comes to Mythic Plus rewards, but they are sufficiently rewarding already, so they can't make the system more generous.
  • Your helm, shoulders and chest will still be Azerite gear, they will have their rings. But the level requirements will not continue to increase, so you'll have access to all of them.
  • There aren't any plans to set the new NPC AI loose into the world, as people expect mobs to behave a certain way and the team wants to be careful about changing that.
  • We could see the AI in other battlegrounds in the future, such as a Warsong brawl.
This article was originally published in forum thread: Patch 8.2 Rise of Azshara - Information Roundup from Content Creators started by Stoy View original post
Comments 120 Comments
  1. Amerissis's Avatar
    War Mode is enabled in Mechagon (...)
    Does this mean it’s mandatory? Is it a PvP place? If so, everyone who just wants to PvE will miss a shitload of content. I’m not going there if I’m forced to PvP.
  1. Skorpionss's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Sykol View Post
    "You said you didn't like flying being gated, so now water walking is too. Thanks for your feedback!"
    It says in the same fucking line that people that already have the water strider gets this in the mail for free so u can use it for ALL mounts, not just the water striders. Jesus christ man, read the whole thing before you outrage.
  1. thilicen's Avatar
    Have they mentioned wether or not flying will be enabled with War Mode? God I hope not.
  1. Roar-Powah's Avatar
    Mercenary mode doesn't let you make social connections, so it wouldn't help the long term health of the PvE community on a faction.

    What about forcing CRZ and sharding down peoples throat in non warmode areas, bloody idiots. That affects community health and has since Legion.

    Nothing about this patch seems to fix the core issues with BfA and WoW in general. Time to see if they will pull their fingers out of their ass for the new expansion come Blizzcon.

    Now my only hope is classic, to play a version of WoW that isn't infested with piss and shit that is in retail WoW.
  1. Biggles Worth's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Odinfrost View Post
    Ah, yes! Let us talk about stuff that will obviously happen instead of all the new stuff that will appear! Cause clearly, when people want info on new big content patches, what they want to know is that Shaman's Lightning Bolt is getting a 5% buff! It's not like the PTR will come soon and show more specifics such as class changes/balance OH WAIT!

    Also if Fire Mage doesn't get better I will flip tables all day!
    Cries in sword and board and single minded fury. I just want options man.
  1. Nnyco's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Sykol View Post
    "You said you didn't like flying being gated, so now water walking is too. Thanks for your feedback!"
    Lets see, you obtain water walking mount by owning a water strider. How the fuck is it time gated when you obtain it literally the same way. Oh right were on mmo-c where people dont read and hyperbole like crazy.
  1. Wangming's Avatar
    "Mechagon and Nazjatar will be fully open on day 1, while the dungeon and raid will launch either the second or third week."

    Hmmm. Sounds interesting. 8.1 was staggered over several months. We still don't have all te 8.15 content. Can they really keep this promise? That would be pretty cool actually.
  1. eel's Avatar
    It's very unlikely we'll see a mercenary system for PvE, as the divide is such a core part of the story and game. It also does more to help queue times, as it switches a player from one side of the queue to another. Mercenary mode doesn't let you make social connections, so it wouldn't help the long term health of the PvE community on a faction.
    This has to be the stupidest point. How would mercenary mode prevent you from making social connections when the current PUG culture is already devoid of any social connections... You find a group, so one or more dungeons/raids and then leave and never see the other players again...

    Also finally merging the factions and getting rid of this nonsense of splitting the player base would help
  1. Redecle's Avatar
    Sounds like solid plans. Hopefully it resolves whatever problems people have.
    And future brings more stuff, like housing solved and brought in.
    Only thing that rubbed me the wrong way is the fact that spawn timer camping rares are back in and this statement:
    "There aren't any plans to set the new NPC AI loose into the world, as people expect mobs to behave a certain way and the team wants to be careful about changing that."
    Who expects that? People are so afraid of change.. Just give us map roaming rares who wander the whole world until killed and then another one spawns somewhere and runs around until found and killed and a faction + currency (for rewards) + rep to hunt them for.
  1. Noradin's Avatar
    So they are trying to force world pvp on us again?

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by thilicen View Post
    Have they mentioned wether or not flying will be enabled with War Mode? God I hope not.
    They kind of did:

    Flying will be enabled in Mechagon + Warmode will be enabled in Mechagon.
  1. coprax's Avatar
    The Water Strider will no longer be able to walk on water without the equipment slot.

    LOLWUT? Joke?
  1. TristanTaylor's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Amerissis View Post
    Does this mean it’s mandatory? Is it a PvP place? If so, everyone who just wants to PvE will miss a shitload of content. I’m not going there if I’m forced to PvP.

    On WoW Head it says Mechagon is War Mode compatible, and mentions should be fun if people opt into it.
  1. cuafpr's Avatar
    The world is more intimidating when you can't just fly over everything. You also get a better sense of place when exploring from the ground.

    ^such a cop-out then make the skies interesting there so many ways to do it, mobs in the sky, ground mobs that shoot you, ground mobs that can pull you down, turrents that can shot you etc.... heck they have done these things in small areas before... just expand it.
  1. justandulas's Avatar
    They are afraid of removing tf/wf because, and i quote, they are afraid people will be fully geared within a week?

    Why don't they, oh i don't know, make EPIC GEAR EPIC AGAIN. Quit guaranteeing drops, and let people work for it.

    Problem is they can't do that without neutering M+ and it's weekly chest too, because raiding is already near dead in favor of M+ for a lot of the remaining players.

    Shame they don't just make raid gear drastically better, but rare to find.
  1. MrLachyG's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Amerissis View Post
    Does this mean it’s mandatory? Is it a PvP place? If so, everyone who just wants to PvE will miss a shitload of content. I’m not going there if I’m forced to PvP.
    ok I don't know where you got that quote from...... but no, PvP has NEVER been mandatory unless you want to do PvP content. which Mechagon is definitely not a part of
  1. coprax's Avatar
    To get this straight: The equipment for mounts is not on a per-mount basis but rather affects all of them at once?
    So if I choose to have the no-daze effect active and come by a river I want to cross, I cannot swap to my strider anymore, I would have to insert a different mount item and afterwards switch back to the no-daze effect?

    How is that a good system?
  1. justandulas's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by MrLachyG View Post
    ok I don't know where you got that quote from...... but no, PvP has NEVER been mandatory unless you want to do PvP content. which Mechagon is definitely not a part of
    they openly say mechagon will be war mode on mandatory. you go to mechagon, you're in the danger zone
  1. MrLachyG's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Sigxy the Lemming View Post
    As long as it doesn't end up "Human housing for Alliance, Orc housing for Horde" nor adding in important NPCs (AH, Bank, Professions) that gives you no reason to ever leave the place (AKA Garrisons), this is the only thing I am interested in seeing. I only want it to be for customization, trophies and cosmetics, nothing else.
    i agree. kind of like a little house - you can choose which capital city you want to be in and in it you can have trophies for the various achievements you have done etc. that would be cool. no vendors, no mission table - it is a home away from home basically.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by justandulas View Post
    they openly say mechagon will be war mode on mandatory. you go to mechagon, you're in the danger zone
    "War Mode is enabled in Mechagon, but the central hub is neutral and you will be attacked by guards if you initiate combat with the opposite faction. The turrets are not PvP enabled, but it seems like Ion wanted them to be now that Taliesin mentioned it."

    you CAN enable it in Mechagon if you CHOOSE to. just like every other zone currently in the game.....

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Rogalicus View Post
    1) I have two water striders, that never stopped me from using random favourite mount button.
    2) They should have unlocked water walking on all mounts without equipment and do the same with non-PvP daze. There's no reason for these mechanics existance, they are nothing but annoyance.
    yeah but you never use the random favourite mount button if you knew you were going to need to go over water. now, you can with any mount.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by dhru2 View Post
    "Horde and Alliance populations are actually well balanced across the world, there is just less of a raiding community on the Alliance side." Sure kido, sure... How about these devs install this game one day?
    um..... you are aware that 200 Horde guilds downed mythic Jaina before 100 Alliance guilds did right? I mean just going off that alone seems to suggest that Horde have more of a raiding community. also, they can literally see which guilds have downed bosses. so I am pretty sure that they know exactly how many Horde raiding guilds there are and how many Alliance ones there are as well.
  1. dranlord's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Roar-Powah View Post
    Mercenary mode doesn't let you make social connections, so it wouldn't help the long term health of the PvE community on a faction.

    What about forcing CRZ and sharding down peoples throat in non warmode areas, bloody idiots. That affects community health and has since Legion.

    Nothing about this patch seems to fix the core issues with BfA and WoW in general. Time to see if they will pull their fingers out of their ass for the new expansion come Blizzcon.

    Now my only hope is classic, to play a version of WoW that isn't infested with piss and shit that is in retail WoW.
    hahahaha post like this make me laugh so hard. Claiming that clsasic will fix the community issue.

    Community is base on ppl, and since the add CRZ if you are a social person the community is huge, the issue is that bring alot of rubbish too. Back on Vanilla community was a joke and elitist jerks.

    Sorry to bring it to you but the issue isnt CRZ is the time and age, any mmo suffer this days for a non healthy community, check FF or ESO there are worst jerks there.
  1. Vargulf the Happy Husky's Avatar
    so the new mount is the "It" machine Mr Garrison makes in South Park.

    hard pass

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