The developers at Blizzard have apparently decided to suspend their own Q&A livestreams, which have been held regularly for a long time, and instead now answer questions from well-known Youtubers and streamers more frequently. After the Zoltan interview with Ion Hazzikostas, Preach now had the opportunity to talk to Lead Encounter Designer Morgan Day about WoW: Shadowlands and all sorts of areas of the new expansion. Of course Torghast is an important topic, but also the new raids as well as dungeons or even single classes. At the end of the message you can find the whole stream of Preach, but first we have summarized the most important things for you:
Morgan Day about Torghast
- With Torghast, the developers want to create a game mode that hasn't existed in WoW before, but at the same time fits well with the tower design and can be played over and over again. Since they themselves enjoy playing representatives of the roguelike genre, they drew inspiration from this.
- The mode is also still evolving, some things are not set in stone, various things are discussed and player feedback is included. However, Torghast is definitely intended to be a mode that can be tackled solo, but also with a group of up to five players.
- Disturbing Visions from BfA has been a sort of test balloon for Torghast.
- Based on player feedback, the developers are currently considering a second Torghast mode that you can visit infinitely to earn awesome cosmetic prestige rewards, similar to the Mage Tower. However, the components for the legendary items will only be available in the "normal" mode, for which you'll need some sort of key.
- The fact that the anima bonuses are often designed for a class rather than a specialization is due to the general design philosophy for Shadowlands: Blizzard wants to put more emphasis back on the classes and the fantasy behind them. Nevertheless, there will of course be many class-specific animaboni that are particularly interesting for one of the specializations. Equally, though, your choice of animaboni may depend on your party composition, your role within the party, or other factors.
- Some animaboni may become effects of legendary items based on experience and testing in the alpha.
Morgan Day on Dungeons
- The playable dungeons so far are comparatively short. However, this is by no means a new design philosophy that will apply to all Shadowlands dungeons. It's more likely due to the fact that these are two dungeons that are also part of the leveling phase. In addition, the instances in the alpha could also still be balanced quite easily, so that you fight your way through the groups of enemies very quickly.
- The next dungeon that will be playable in the alpha is Tirna Scithe and it is also quite short. It has three bosses, but also an interesting new trash mechanic with puzzles. Later dungeons should be quite longer.
- The goal of the affix rotation is for the dungeons to always feel a little different, for there to be variety. It is also okay if a dungeon is a bit more difficult in one week than in another because of the affixes. However, this difference should not be so blatant that frustration arises and you suddenly fail a keystone that is four or five levels below the keystones you normally master.
- With Shadowlands, the developers want to have the Mythic Plus area tested earlier to have enough time for fine-tuning. So there will be no waiting until all the affixes are ready.
Morgan Day about Raids
- The developers like to include the environment in boss fights, at least when it makes sense. Besides, you can't always do that either, because then it wouldn't be anything special anymore.
- Among other things, Count Denathrius is waiting for us in Nathria Castle, and this fight will take place on several levels at once.
- The developers always have a lot of fun incorporating special mythic phases into a fight. However, this will still only be used selectively, when it's appropriate and makes sense in terms of the story. We want it to continue to feel exciting and not become standard.
Morgan Day on Pacts, Soul Bonds and Conduits
- Pacts, Soulbonds, Legendary Powers - all of these systems are still being worked on a lot at the moment. But the team wants to get them into alpha as soon as possible.
- Conduits have turned out to be a great way to tweak the balance. For example, if the developers find that Warlocks do fantastic single-target damage but can't keep up in battles against multiple targets, the designers can create a conduit that addresses that very weakness.
- Of course, feedback from testers will also ensure that pacts and the like are adjusted or even redesigned in the coming weeks.
- At the maximum level, players decide which pact they want to join and which pact abilities they want to permanently unlock. You also decide on the soul bond of a member of your pact. Over time, you'll unlock more tier levels of that soul bond. In Torghast, you'll be able to get your first legendary item before the start of Shadowlands Season 1. With all of this, you can then head to Castle Nathria or the Mythic Plus dungeons.
- In the near future, almost all pact abilities should be testable in Torghast, with a daily rotation for pacts. This includes pacts whose zones are not yet playable in the alpha.
- With all the new effects and abilities coming into play with the pacts and such, it's obviously challenging to balance boss fights well so that these cool new player tools don't trivialize the challenges. Rather, the goal now is to present players with challenges and problems that can be solved with the new abilities. These challenges will need to cover different areas, otherwise raid groups will just pack in certain classes to make the fight easier.
Morgan Day on classes
- After Legion, many players felt that their character lost something to the loss of the artifact weapon that couldn't be mitigated by the Azerite system. With Shadowlands, there should be enough to fill the void immediately thanks to Legendarys, Soulbonds, Conduits, and more system.
- Pact abilities are designed with the entire class in mind, rather than for individual playstyles. As such, some abilities are designed to heal and deal damage so they can be used by all playstyles.
- Also, the developers see it as a problem if you have to manually use several abilities in a row, even though they actually have the same effect: briefly increase damage or healing. However, removing them from the global cooldown cannot be the solution.
- Maybe the developers will change some abilities that are pure DpS cooldowns to survival abilities. An example given is Mirror Images from the Mage, which could become a talent in a revised form.
- Currently, there is no update for Shadow Priest. However, the specialization is still on the developers' to-do list.
As promised, here is the full stream of Preach now:
Watch Interview with Morgan Day of Blizzard by Preachlfw at www.twitch.tv What
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05:55WoW Shadowlands: First look at Torghast - Video
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Karsten has been writing about his favorite hobby since 2009 - it all started back then as a rogue class spokesman at buffed.
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