Patch 3.1 is no different, and as such I’ve had a couple of days to mull over the notes. The obvious big features like Void Ark and the exploratory missions are things to be discussed as the patch is actually played, and you know that’s going to be the subject of the column over the next few weeks. But some things can be analyzed just from the notes, and so I’m going to examine the notes, consider what we know, and rant about a colossally dumb decision that has been made.
Eliot Lefebvre has been writing on Massively Overpowered since it was created after a long and illustrious career of writing about video games for half a decade on some other site that you might have heard about. He currently pens Wisdom of Nym for Final Fantasy XIV, WoW Factor for World of Warcraft, and the rotating adventures of Choose My Adventure. He also shares writing duties on Perfect Ten and writes some nonsense for What Are You Playing. No photos of him standing next to Abraham Lincoln have surfaced, coincidentally.
Personal blog: Eliot-Lefebvre.com
One of the facts repeated throughout BlizzCon was that classes and class fantasies will be getting overhauled in World of Warcraft‘s next expansion. So what does that mean? Well, there wasn’t time during the panels for the developers to talk about it in depth. Instead, a series of blogs are being posted, starting with a look at how Hunters are changing and how Priests roles are getting better differentiation.
The blog argues that Hunters have a strong class identity but that the lines between the three specs have always been blurry. By revamping the design to have Marksmanship with no pet, Beast Masters at range with a pet, and Survival in melee with a pet, Blizzard will make all three variants far more distinct.
It’s not exactly a stretch to say that Blizzard Entertainment casts a long shadow over the field of online gaming. World of Warcraft remains an absolute juggernaut of the MMO field despite its recent history of shedding subscriptions with zeal. Hearthstone seems to be everyone’s favorite as-long-as-I-have-five-minutes card game. Overwatch has the interest of many people who otherwise ignore team-based shooters; Diablo III is heir to a long legacy of not-quite-MMO item farming. Odds are that whatever your flavor of game may be, you have a Blizzard game somewhere on your hard drive.
This year’s BlizzCon addressed all of the company’s games, and that meant covering a lot of ground. Whether you were watching for Legion news, new Hearthstone cards, or more details on Heroes of the Storm, it’s probable that you caught at least bits and pieces out of the event. So did it live up to your expectations? Did it leave you excited, disappointed, or somewhere in between? Were our liveblogs awesome, or too awesome?
You don’t need to actually answer that last one.
It’s the tail end of BlizzCon, and World of Warcraft players have Legion questions. Players probably had questions at the start of the convention, too, but now were’ to the point that those questions can actually get answered. Yes, tonight we’ll get the final panel for the game during the convention, and once again, we’re bringing you the results live and unfiltered.
Like our previous liveblogs, the live updates will be down in the comments, with the main body of the post updated as we go. Join us down in the comments while the panel is running to take part in the back-and-forth, or just catch up on all of the big revelations. What will they be about? We don’t know; they’re questions and answers. It’s hard to be sure yet.
How is transmogrifying items going to change with World of Warcraft‘s Legion expansion? What are the restrictions on transmogrifying artifacts? How do the artifacts work? What changes are being brought to abilities in order to balance PvP with a new progression system? What sort of crazy tech is involved in making all zones scale to your level? What rewards will we have access to with the new challenge keystones? Can we queue for them properly? Does the Grand Magistrix have power over time?
These questions and more are what we go into this BlizzCon panel with. What we will take away from it, hopefully, are an array of answers and fine details so that we can step into the fast-approaching beta with knowledge rather than dumbfounded stares. So jump on into the comments to take part in our liveblogging once again as we find out how World of Warcraft‘s new systems will work. You can also check below for a recap of what’s happened.
How do you represent a boss who has power over time? Because the Grand Magistrix has power over time. The obvious answer is that you will be traveling back and forth in time during the fight. Playing a Paladin? Enjoy trying to deal damage with your abilities from the base game. Playing a Monk? Congratulations, now you don’t exist because it’s Cataclysm. Warlock? Well, that seems fine, but it’s going to be less fun when she turns the clock ahead to the twelfth expansion when your class is constantly on fire.
Or maybe it’ll just be slowdown fields and stuff, I don’t know.
Anyway, this week’s installment of What Are You Playing is here, and while I’ll be watching a bunch of BlizzCon streams for your edification, the rest of the overpowered crew has other plans! Check them out just below, and let us know what you’re going to be up to down in the comments.
It’s been about a year since we first heard of Overwatch at last year’s BlizzCon. Since then, the beta has kicked off, and as of Tuesday, 82,000 matches had been played with an average length of about 7 minutes. But you don’t have to be limited to playing on your PC, as today’s panel and opening ceremonies confirmed that the game is coming to consoles. Developers have stated that Xbox, PlayStation, and PC players will be on separate servers rather than being stuck in the same pool.
Players can now purchase the game’s Origin Edition, which includes five special skins for existing heroes from earlier in their histories and an assortment of bonuses for other titles. Diablo III players will gain a pair of Mercy-style wings, StarCraft II players gain portraits, Hearthstone gets a new cardback, and World of Warcraft players get a baby Winston pet. Meanwhile, Heroes of the Storm players can look forward to Tracer joining the game’s lineup, although she’s very early in development.
Three new heroes were also on display. Mei is a climatologist wielding an ice gun and armored in a heavy parka, serving as a defensive character. Genji is Hanzo’s brother, an offense-oriented character with high mobility and lethal sword strikes in melee range. D. Va is a former pro gamer, piloting a mech and able to jump out of her mech when necessary. You can check out videos and screenshots below.
It’s interesting to watch the progress of Asta as a title. The game shut down rather quickly in its native country, but it has entered its first closed beta in the US and is hoping to do better this time around. That’s a bit of an odd pedigree, yes.
Hey, we’re deep in the throes of a convention this weekend, but there hasn’t been a whole lot of hard dates for betas. But there’s still new beta stuff going on this past week.
- World of Warcraft is running its beta for Legion in the near future. We’ve been told it’ll be in the weeks following BlizzCon with no further details. Hooray for beta?
- Tree of Savior is sending out more beta keys, although they’re purely via the lottery system.
- Engines and licensing fees have forced a slowdown to The Repopulation‘s testing schedule. Not due to the studio behind the game, just due to the company behind the engine. It’s kind of a mess.
- Lineage Eternal will enter closed beta next year.
- Want to dive into a World of Fishing? Because that’s in open beta now.
- Last but not least, Elite: Dangerous will enter its beta testing for the Horizon expansion on November 9th.
Oh, yes, and there is that whole long list just past the break for those who want even more stuff to watch for. Let us know if something skipped phases, launched, or… well, in one case, unexpectedly changed its name without us noticing. Seriously, who does that?
Check them out, and let us know if something has changed without us noticing. It happens from time to time.
How would you like to team up with another player to play a hero in Heroes of the Storm? That’s the central idea behind Cho’Gall, one of the new heroes being added to the game. Cho’Gall requires one player to take control of the physical “Cho” head to move the character around and punch things, while the other player takes control of “Gall” to cast spells and serve as a ranged assassin. He’s playable even if both players aren’t well coordinated, but he definitely becomes much stronger when both players are working together.
He’s also impossible to buy – Cho’Gall is being offered to a select group of players (including BlizzCon attendees) and can subsequently be unlocked by playing him in matches with players who do not yet have him (or purchased later, says Blizzard’s official site — thanks to Dengar for that tip!). Play two matches with Cho’Gall with someone who lacks Cho’Gall and Cho’Gall is unlocked.
The development team also showed off Genn Greymane and Lunara the Dryad, two new heroes playing around with ranged characters who move in and out of range. There’s also the new Arena gameplay mode, offering a choice of three random heroes to play in a 5v5 format, and the new Towers of Doom map with a different approach to area control. Check out preview screenshots and video just below.
There’s an expansion in the works for World of Warcraft. That’s not news. It’s the details of that expansion that fans have been anxiously awaiting ever since the expansion was first announced in August. Now that BlizzCon is here, we’re finally getting more details, and just for the heck of it we thought we’d go ahead and liveblog the revelations for y’all. A couple people are probably interested in that, right?
Update: The liveblog is over, but you can still backtrack through the comments and take a look at our recap in the post below. While everyone could watch the opening ceremony, this one is exclusive to virtual ticket holders, so cast your eyes down below and get a look at what Legion has to offer.
Good news, Path of Exile fans: The next expansion for the game hasn’t been announced, but it has been announced that it’s going to be announced. Soon, anyhow; the expansion announcement is currently planned for the end of the month, while details of the next major content patch is planned for the end of next week. So if you’ve chewed through everything the game has to offer and have been biting your nails waiting for more, you can take heart that you’ll soon know what you’ve been waiting for.
According to Grinding Gear, the expansion is planned to launch within the first quarter of 2016. A new race season has also kicked off if you need a bit of extra gameplay to carry you through to the announcement date. But don’t worry – new stuff is coming, and it’s coming soon.
Roads can deteriorate, statues crumble, castles collapse, and books are lost. But legacies persist. A redesign for Crowfall‘s website plays up the idea that each player of the game will need to choose a legacy, not in the sense of a mechanical decision but in pursuit of the game’s major design goals. The idea is explained in more depth in a news post on the official site outlining the three categories of glory, wealth, and power.
Glory is all about defeating enemies, taking control of territory, and making use of the fact that the non-eternal part of the game can be won before things reset once again. Wealth, of course, is about acquiring items, driving the economy, and hoarding resources. Power, last but not least, is all about acquiring allies over time, being feared and respected, and having oaths of fealty allowing you to direct armies in the game. Major design revelations are promised in December, but that doesn’t mean it’s too early to give some thought to your own legacy before you start playing the game.
As always, these notes serve only as a preliminary outline, with certain information intentionally omitted such as the new item recipes. However, it’s more than enough for players to have a clearer picture of how all of the new content will play with what’s already in-game, along with uplifting promises like more readily accessible upgrade tokens for level 50 gear. Check out the full set of patch notes and get ready for the patch on November 10th.