Developer Interview - Ion Hazzikostas
WowChakra is sitting down with Ion Hazzikostas to discuss World of Warcraft.



Torghast
  • The long term goal for Torghast is not for it to become extremely easy the higher you rise in floors. It is still very much in development and the team doesn't want runs to take forever.
  • There will be a range of achievements to complete in Torghast.
  • The team is building Torghast with including events in mind to change up the experience, such as different creatures invading the tower.
  • They are hoping to have legendary crafting testable in a few weeks. Collecting parts for legendary creation will unlock a door just outside of Torghast where a mysterious smith (the one who crafted Frostmourne) will help you use the materials to craft your items.
  • You should be able to unlock the door to the rune smith during the first week of the expansion, but material gathering will take longer.

Shadowlands
  • Time is different in Shadowlands. It is a construct or order and structure, which isn't a focus in the Shadowlands.
  • We will have to see how this difference in time will effect our characters when we come out the other end.

Covenants
  • Choices with consequences tied into the mechanics of the game are core aspects of an RPG. They fully understand modern community mentality, however, and do not want people to feel like there is a wrong choice. They want to iterate on the covenants during the alpha to expand past just the abilities, such as with the soulbinds. They want these to showcase strengths and weaknesses for different content.

Class Trainers
  • Class trainers will teach new players about their different specializations in Shadowlands.
  • When you make a new character in Shadowlands, you will simply be a class with no specialization until you reach level 10.
  • There are no plans to have players learn spells from class trainers again.

Burning of Teldrassil
  • Tyrande's story will continue a piece of the burning of Teldrassil in Shadowlands. The war started in BfA is not over in her eyes.
  • We may encounter many who fell during Battle for Azeroth in the Shadowlands.
  • The team knows there is an unresolved story with Teldrassil and plan to continue it in future stories, not necisarrily in Shadowlands.

Heritage Armor
  • Races will continue to receive their heritage armor throughout Shadowlands. There is nothing to announce regarding who gets it next, however.

Adventure System - Mission Table
  • The team is hoping to have the adventure system up on the Alpha in a month.
  • The team is looking to shift the mission table to something that matches the fantasy of encounters in WoW. They don't want it to be simply a coin flip or automated by add-ons.

Professions
  • Armor crafters will be able to craft items to help with legendary crafting. They want item crafting professions to feel important throughout Shadowlands.
  • The optional crafting materials might be added to previous expansion professions in the future.
  • You can still craft items without optional items and get random stats, but the team wanted to introduce a way for the player to have some control of what they create.

Legendaries and Catch-Up Mechanics
  • There will likely be some sort of catch-up mechanic for legendaries throughout Shadowlands.
  • The system is designed so a fresh alt can start aiming towards a legendary right away, unlike Legion.
  • The team is experimenting with making legendary recipes account-wide for alts.

Technical
  • The team always wants to take advantage of the latest technology, such as with the options for ray tracing support.
  • They also want to maintain a totally accessible minimum specs.

Tier Sets
  • Tier sets will make a return later in Shadowlands, but the team is still deciding what to do with set bonuses.
  • Set bonuses are one of the reasons they pulled back on tier sets originally. They limited item diversity because certain slots were locked to tier sets.

PvP Gear
  • PvP stats are not returning. Itemization will remain like it is in Battle for Azeroth, with the inclusion of a PvP vendor to give players more choice of gear acquisition.

Transmog
  • Current thinking is that transmog from each covenant is locked to players that belong to that covenant.
  • If you have multiple characters in a covenant, however, the transmogs will be account-wide for characters of the same covenant.

Pre-Expansion Event
  • The pre-patch can only release when all of Shadowlands is done.
  • The team is monitoring BfA and thinking of additions that will give players rewards and goals to pursue while they wait for the pre-patch.

War Mode
  • The team is continuing to build upon War mode in Shadowlands. There might be more free-for-all events instead of faction events, including the possibility of challenges between covenants.

Current Reputation Buff
  • The reputation buff is still ending, but the team is planning to add new permanent bonuses that will help alts catch up for the rest of the expansion, such as the with the legendary cloak progression or getting corruption that you want.

Legendary Progression
  • Legendary acquisition won't necessarily get faster as you progress in the tower, but you will likely get more options for different scenarios as you accumulate more.

CGI Cinematics
  • The team will continue to use all of the expected media seen in Battle for Azeroth throughout Shadowlands.

Characters in Shadowlands
  • Many important characters from Azeroth will be in Shadowlands in some form, and the team is excited for everyone to see where different characters end up.
  • Arthas is obviously SOMEWHERE in the Shadowlands, but they want to be respectful with the character. We will learn more about him and his true nature, but we most likely won't be adventuring or interacting much with him.

Oribos
  • Oribos will be available in the alpha in the next week.
  • Oribos will function much like Dalaran did in Legion while the Covenant sanctums will function much like order halls.

Loading Screens in Torghast
  • The loading screens between floors is a technical limitation. The team might experiment with using a visual effect to transition instead of a blue-bar loading screen.

Shadowlands Lore
  • The ability to travel between Azeroth and the Shadowlands is possible for your characters in lore. It also allows us to take characters from Azeroth into the Shadowlands.
  • Bolvar will be involved in the pre-expansion events and the story of Shadowlands. Sylvanas left him alive at the end of their encounter.
This article was originally published in forum thread: Developer Interview - Ion Hazzikostas started by Stoy View original post
Comments 100 Comments
  1. Mazzic518's Avatar
    Time jump after Shadowlands confirmed!!!
  1. davidcryix's Avatar
    • Class trainers will teach new players about their different specializations in Shadowlands.

    Man i am so ready for this. I picked up my 31 lightforged paladin after almost 2 years of playing it and i do not remember ANYTHIIIING about how it works. I mostly figured it out after an hour of killing stuff but if i could just go back to a trainer and have them explain me some stuff, that would be so great. I almost logged out and did a paladin class trial just to get some help.
  1. Restors's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Mazzic518 View Post
    Time jump after Shadowlands confirmed!!!
    "We will have to see how this difference in time will effect our characters when we come out the other end."

    Pretty much... Part of me is kind of excited over this idea. Cant wait to see what Blizzard has in store for us. But knowing Blizzard lately, I will probably end up disappointed.
  1. Harbour's Avatar
    They want to iterate on the covenants during the alpha to expand past just the abilities, such as with the soulbinds. They want these to showcase strengths and weaknesses for different content.
    Basically want players to create multiple characters, each for different activities, to sell more level boosters. Obvious answer is obvious.
  1. Saltysquidoon's Avatar
    Tier sets returning, that's potentially raising my hype-o-meter from -50 to -45.

    Nothing about actual base spec work again that's a worry though.

    EDIT
    Set bonuses are one of the reasons they pulled back on tier sets originally. They limited item diversity because certain slots were locked to tier sets.
    Not like legionaries, artefact weapons and azerite gear (legit though, azerite + neck is the same number of slots as tier).
    What an absolute pumpkin...
  1. Unholyground's Avatar
    Time jump, I called it way back before we found out about SL, I am betting this is setting up the second old world revamp.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by davidcryix View Post
    • Class trainers will teach new players about their different specializations in Shadowlands.

    Man i am so ready for this. I picked up my 31 lightforged paladin after almost 2 years of playing it and i do not remember ANYTHIIIING about how it works. I mostly figured it out after an hour of killing stuff but if i could just go back to a trainer and have them explain me some stuff, that would be so great. I almost logged out and did a paladin class trial just to get some help.
    The specs are very easy to learn, the rotational abilities for every spec/class are pretty obvious. Though I have been playing the game since 2005 so that might be why lmao.
  1. Gasparde's Avatar
    Set bonuses are one of the reasons they pulled back on tier sets originally. They limited item diversity because certain slots were locked to tier sets.
    Man, it sure is a good fucking thing that expansion-long stuff like Artifact Weapons and the Heart of Azeroth have totally circumvented that problem. Same with this new legendary Cloak, or all of the Azerite slots.

    Like, what a fucking bullshit answer. Can't wait for the next slot that turns out to be locked for the entirety of Shadowlands.
  1. damonskye's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Mazzic518 View Post
    Time jump after Shadowlands confirmed!!!
    I agree, and it would be perfect... we all come out, say, 200 years later to a dramatically changed Azeroth.

    They can update the open world again and make it work within the story.

    They can ditch Horde vs. Alliance as we suddenly come back after 200 years of the peace that progressed from BFA.

    A time jump would be amazing.
  1. Hugnomo's Avatar
    Old Man Anduin from the comic incoming
  1. McNeil's Avatar
    Same answer whether Arthas is in Shadowlands or not. I’d still be surprised if we don’t see him anywhere.
  1. Mrbleedinggums's Avatar
    I wish they would just make tier sets like Classic where you had an 8 piece set, but they could make it so that you can customize, say, 4 or 5 of those items to make an interchangable set. Even give a trinket or weapon a special effect that basically reads something as "This item counts towards your total set bonus count". or make it similar to 8.3's "Add a socket to this item" effect that you can give a non-set piece that effect. Boom, now you can still customize and swap out items.
  1. Mstone7781's Avatar
    I am calling a time jump as well, and have been for awhile. I am 100% on board with a revamp of the world but my only wish is if that is the case and where we are headed please let us return to the old world via Zidormi or something, Cataclysm getting rid of so much old content and taking it away completely sucked.
  1. Djaye's Avatar
    sounds like the same ole song and dance. only solid i got out of it was the time jump confirmation. really hoping they take the opportunity to do a drastic ship correction, fix the world and and make azeroth relevant again. why they cant figure out a way to use the whole world for content is beyond me. they just keep adding more fucking islands and stupid excuses why no one has noticed them before...
    pandaland should have been the last new land mass on azeroth.
  1. Sentynel's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Harbour View Post
    Basically want players to create multiple characters, each for different activities, to sell more level boosters. Obvious answer is obvious.
    With the leveling revamp coming in Shadowlands I don't see why anyone would ever buy a boost...
  1. Onikaroshi's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Djaye View Post
    sounds like the same ole song and dance. only solid i got out of it was the time jump confirmation. really hoping they take the opportunity to do a drastic ship correction, fix the world and and make azeroth relevant again. why they cant figure out a way to use the whole world for content is beyond me. they just keep adding more fucking islands and stupid excuses why no one has noticed them before...
    pandaland should have been the last new land mass on azeroth.
    Because that's boring as fuck, would rather they just leave each expansion zone to rot and create new ones. Who wants to spend years in freaking EK/Kal or Northrend?
  1. apelsinjuice's Avatar
    alt catchups with cloak/neck/corruptions, maybe I will play again
  1. awadh's Avatar
    Legendaries and Catch-Up Mechanics
    The team is experimenting with making legendary recipes account-wide for alts.
    What the fuck is there to experiment with? Make it account wide and everybody will be happy. There is nothing to experiment, just make it account-wide, holy shit.

    Tier Sets
    Set bonuses are one of the reasons they pulled back on tier sets originally. They limited item diversity because certain slots were locked to tier sets.
    Right, because instead of having 4 pieces locked to tier pieces, we now have 3 pieces locked to bis azerite trait combos.. *clap clap clap* big success!
  1. Shadowmatrix's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Harbour View Post
    Basically want players to create multiple characters, each for different activities, to sell more level boosters. Obvious answer is obvious.
    Exactly, that is why they keep making leveling so easy.
  1. Harbour's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by shadowmatrix View Post
    Exactly, that is why they keep making leveling so easy.
    This doesnt fix the problem, duh.
    Leveling four characters to be competitive in M+, Raiding, RBG and Arena alone would be pain in the ass, and people have way more classes they want to play in all areas.
  1. crusadernero's Avatar
    So they actually makes a point out of "We will have to see how this difference in time will effect our characters when we come out the other end."

    Means two things. Either we go back in time with 10.0(yeah wont happen) or we are many years in the future from when we first step into SL. A sign that they are pushing for a total revamp of EK/K?

    With them putting every xpac into the category "pick where you want to lvl" almost from start in SL, its not difficult to imagine they are working on a world revamp for 10.0.

    ooooor maybe all heroes(characters) gets turned very old on the other end lol

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