Thursday, October 20, 2011

Crazy & Radical BlizzCon Predictions for WoW's Future!

Tomorrow, the faithful gather and learn of what the Olympians have in store for us over the next year and a half, and how our world and lives will change. So of course, I'm going to play the Oracular role for a bit and throw somedarts and see if any of them hit.

I'm trying to think of Blizzard really making a reach for transforming WoW in a blue-sky sort of way, so some of this is super CRAZY-RADICAL. I doubt any of this is what they're actually thinking, but this is the kind of thing  I would be pitching if I were a developer on the WoW team.

  • At least 7 new zones
  • Level cap to 100 (or possibly at achieving Level 100 you gain a title level like "Paragon" or something)
  • Guild Level cap to 50 (new cauldrons, new food buffs, lowering cool-down of the big abilities further (rez, summon, etc.))
  • Either PvP or PvE objectives in every zone related to dailies available to either side. Each type of conflict rewards its particular type of play (Maybe even link head and shoulder enchants to these matches, along with bonus materials (enchanting mats, gems, ore, elementals and herbs))
  • Spectator mode - subscribe to any dungeon, raid, BG or Arena and watch as an invisible member, able to move with the raid while tethered to stay within 10' of the raid lead. Raid lead can set their group as private, invite only, or open
  • BattleNet allows cross-realm grouping for Arena, Raid and BG
  • New class related to the expansion. The new class will be a healer/tank/dps hybird using either leather or mail, start at level 68 ALA the DK zone
  • Tanking becomes more of a DPS role with a few defensive tricks tied to offensive abilities, talents and active mitigation
  • Disc priests Talent Specialization opens up Int Plate for them
  • All classes are now Hybrid. Mages are Heals (Absorbs/Cauterize)/DPS, Warlocks are Heals (Affliction drain-style)/DPS, Rogues are Tank (Mitigation)/DPS, Hunters are Tank (Pet)/DPS
  • Eventual goal to move beyond the Trinity by slowly opening players to widening the scope of their individual specs and classes
Dungeons & Raids:
  • Every dungeons in the game now scales up to Heroic and random dungeon opens up the entire history of WoW in the LFG potluck (with the option to queue specifically for a particular type of dungeon (All, Classic, Outland, Northrend, Cataclysm, Prior Tier(s), Current Tier))
  • No more 10/25 seperation - all Raids scaled to 15 people with a standard composition of  2  tanks, 4 healers and 9 DPS. All Raids have 3 difficulty levels - LFR (Easy), Normal, and Heroic. Possible to queue for Easy as a pre-made
  • Scaled down "Encounters" built into the game - a solo player can, with the help of NPCs play brief skirmish type maps with clearly defined objectives that scale up with difficulty. These can be scaled up to 3 players of any spec with more enemies and higher health for each person added. Rewards are always less powerful than the current tier of dungeons
Other Systems:
  • Archaeology has been rebooted - you can focus on a particular race, you have a chance to unearth horrors, run into competitors and trigger traps requiring some solo play to discover stuff rather than staring at a UI element. Rares aren't just about gathering mats - each Rare has a small quest or two associated with it. Epic Archaeology items have extensive quest lines that take some time to run through and might require grouping up at points to get into dungeons and/or raids
  • Path of the Titans is back in - it can be started once you hit Paragon level and finish a class-specific quest line with a lot of material gathering, dungeon and drop farming, and some other stuff - this will take a while, ALA Legendary quest-lines. Once finished, it will be possible to explore particular class-specific abilities and allow for more specs to open up - a Paragon of her class will master all possibilities open to her over time. Character growth and benefit without a time element tied to it, without affecting balance. Further growth possible in this venue...
As for the actual content? It almost doesn't matter, it could be swimming pandas and flying dolphins for all I care, but I would really love an Outland style Burning Legion expansion, though I doubt this is the one. I think the one after this is where the Legion either comes to us regrouped and in force, or we go to one of their worlds and take the offensive for once. That's what I really want in the end - to invade the Legion worlds.

So, that's what I've got! I'll be watching the live-stream tomorrow afternoon from home hanging out in Vent and in game with a couple of guildies. Stop by, or something! And mock my foolish hopes and dreams for this little game of ours as they're dashed one by one.

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