World of Warcraft begins to retire artifact weapons in preparation for Battle for Azeroth

Players who have logged into World of Warcraft since yesterday have discovered that doomsday has finally arrived for their artifact weapons. Yes, these weapons that they have spent so much time leveling up in Legion are on their way out for Battle for Azeroth, and the questline has kicked off to retire these powerful artifacts.

There’s “Heed the Speaker’s Call” quest right now that begins this process, fully powering any artifact weapons that haven’t reached their full potential as part of an effort to counter this giant sword that’s hurting the planet. In so doing, players’ artifact weapons will start to become unstable. The good news is that players won’t have to give up their artifact’s traits just yet — that happens with Patch 8.0. It should also be noted that players will get to keep their artifact weapon appearances to transmog now and in the future.

Time is running out to finish a couple of Argus achievements as well as the Mage’s Tower, as these will be disabled with the expansion pre-patch goes live.

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Valen Sinclair
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Valen Sinclair

Soooooo glad I didn’t waste time grinding these useless things out. Ugh. I quit every xpac after I finish questing and do a few LFR raids of the first raid. Then I’m out.

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angrakhan

That’s pretty funny. Although I’ve logged more hours in WoW than any other MMO I’ve played (which is a lot), I quit several xpacs ago when I came to the realization that literally everything you do in WoW is totally meaningless because it will all be invalidated as soon as the next xpac comes out. It’s all just a colossal waste of time. This is just another case in point.

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Lily Cheng

You have perfectly articulated exactly why I quit mid-WOTLK, there is no real progression in WoW, it is all temporary. For those who like to play MMOs with xpac by xpac progression systems (which obviously millions still like) then it’s great you still enjoy it. However for the rest of us who want the many years of time we like to play MMOs consistently progressing then WoW is indeed a colossal waste of time.

notimpotent
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notimpotent

What would you have them do? Stop releasing new content? Should we still be hanging out in our garrisons 3 years later? The artifact system was cool, but now it’s time to move on to the next cool thing. That’s the nature of an MMO.

It’s not a colossal waste of time if you enjoyed the journey.

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Danny Smith

Like 2 years ago i told friends screaming “OMG ASHBRINGER, HYPE!” to cool their jets since logically they would end up depowered/destroyed and replaced in the next expansion and was promptly called some blend of fool, hater and troll.

Now the same people are going nuclear on the forums saying “FU BLIZZ ALL THAT HARD WORK FOR NOTHING?!?!?!?!?!?”. Hype is only good for the businessman and cringe connoisseur in the longrun.

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Roger Melly

Tried playing this during the last free weekend . I must admit its a hell of a lot better than it used to be while questing . I wasn’t killing everything with one shot anymore and it was actually challenging and fun again . I was seriously tempted to resubscribe but the community is what puts me off .

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cerement

Color me confused … Post Battle for Azeroth, what happens with players leveling through Legion? No more artifact (considering that was a big selling point for Legion)? Or is it an artifact in Legion zones and a normal weapon outside? With retirement of the related quests, will new players / returning players get a chance at unlocking artifact weapons and appearances?

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TheDonDude

You get the artifact but I think it’s just a kickass weapon that lasts you from 100 to 110. No putting in traits or anything like that.

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Leiloni

Not quite. You need to do this quest in order to have your artifact change. And you need to do several story quests for this quest to even open up. So for a fresh 100, they won’t encounter this for a while, and will likely go through the same process everyone else did leveling to 110.

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Zora

Correct me if I am wrong but wasn’t it mentioned a month or so ago that the mage tower appearances wouldn’t actually be retired and they were planning on allowing them to be obtained in the future?

I remember that quite distinctly as I had -just- gotten my mage tower achievement and told myself what a waste it had been as I was in all actuality in no rush… oh well

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TheDonDude

Mage tower has always been a Legion thing only.

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Mikey's Bored

Mage Tower is Legion’s challenge mode, it will be retired. All of the other artifact skins will still be acquirable forever.

gelfred
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gelfred

No, its going, but you will be able to unlock the alternate colours for any mage tower skin you have unlocked after it closes.

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Weilan

Are they improving the appearance and giving importance to the old zones (Elwynn Forest, Westfall, Durotar, The Barrens, etc.)? Or those aren’t part of Azeroth anymore?

Blizzard makes me sick with how they are handling WoW – they only push new content and force players to focus on it and nothing else, there is no replay value to the game anymore and the old content isn’t given the credit it deserves.

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Mikey's Bored

Actually, Blizzard periodically updates WoW’s graphics with each expansion, something not many companies do, also leaks from the expansion show that they did in fact go back to some old zones for some updates, but they will probably only do that for zones that will be relevant in some way to the expansion. Leaks have shown that at least some of the plaguelands got an overhaul, so we will probably be returning there for some reason.

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Weilan

The only changes that happened for Elwynn Forest are that most of the quests are different, in Northshire Valley instead of Defias bandits, you have Blackrock Orcs and Goblins and the texture of some trees were changes and also the BGM.

But the most prominent aspect of every zone are the ground texture and occasionally skybox, simply, because most players usually tilt their camera a bit downwards so it shows mostly the ground when they are fighting. They changes the zone a bit and the quests too, but it really feels outdated compared to the new zones. When you go to some unchanged part of Westfall, probably Dagger Hills, then you teleport to, say, Stormheim, it’s like you’re traveling from 2004 to 2018. That’s not right. I would expect this from some cheap Asian MMO whose developers are too lazy to even be bothered to keep the game on the same visual standards, but not Blizzard.

I’m losing hope they will change the old zones any time soon, I’m curious about Duskwood, Eastern Plaguelands, Felwood and Sratholme. Hopefully this expansion will shed some light on those areas.

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Dug From The Earth

I know that in a past expansion, many of the Elwynn Forest trees were replaced with the newer higher polygon count trees.

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Weilan

Probably, but I know in CATA it was just textures, the thing is, if they replace one asset with another, the trees everywhere in Elwynn Forest should automatically change, same with ground texture, so I don’t see the big deal. Not even high polygon models can do the old zone much justice as higher resolution textures.

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Koshelkin

WoW looks a decade old up to Pandaria. Kalimdor, the Eastern Kingdoms, Northend and Outland pretty much look like they’ve done a decade ago, with a tad higher resolution. This doesn’t help with the uniformity nor the bland textures of the landscape. You can still see the work of very old terraforming tools and texturebrushes from back then. Look at the mountains in the old zones and the transition between textures, take a look at how versatile a texture is and how much of it looks the same. From Pandaria onwards WoW can manage to look beautiful, with it’s full comic vibe but before that… not worth seeing. Blizzard should let people skip the first 70-80 levels by now.

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TheDonDude

I dunno, Blizzard routinely updates old stuff. They’re probably one of the best MMO companies for it.

gelfred
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gelfred

They may be doing this throughout this expansion, though just for max level. The Arathi zone is being phased for players at max level during the expansion to have some pvp objectives and world bosses.

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Kickstarter Donor
thalendor

Of course, the last time they focused significant effort on revamping the old zones in an expansion, it didn’t turn out quite so well for them. Cataclysm is generally not remembered by most as one of the better expansions. You could argue that they “did it wrong” with the Cata revamp, which I think is a fair enough argument to make, but I can definitely see understand if Blizz is a bit hesistant to go through that again. And from my own personal point of view, I’d rather see more new content than spending too much time redoing old world stuff — heck, there are days I wish I could experience the original, pre-Cata Eastern Kingdoms and Kalimdor zones again, but that will need to wait a couple more years it seems.

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Utakata

That because the players where asking for a Shirley Temple, and we where given Frankenstein’s monster instead. /le sigh