WoW: First BfA, now Shadowlands

From my point of view, Legion was a great WoW expansion that I will remember fondly for several reasons. I really liked many of the new zones as well as the story told in the course of the expansion, which came to a worthy end with the wonderfully staged finale in Antorus. A highlight for me were also the order halls with their own quest series, the artifact weapons and the chic class mounts. Let's add the fast timing of the patches as well as motivating endgame challenges such as the magician tower or the Mythic Plus dungeons and we have the material for perhaps the best WoW expansion of the last ten years.

However, there is also a development that began in Legion in this form, which was then adopted and even expanded in Battle for Azeroth and now in Shadowlands, and which I view very skeptically: In the fight against the Burning Legion stood – with Look at the character progression in the endgame – for the first time systems and mechanics in focus that were only "borrowed" and that were removed in the following chapter. The upgraded artifact weapon as well as the collected Legendarys made up a large part of the strength of an Azeroth hero in Legion. In Battle for Azeroth these factors disappeared and were replaced by Azerite items, essences, corruption effects and the legendary cloak. Sebastian had already dedicated his own special to Rental Power in April:

WoW: Artifact weapons of the Druids in Legion

With artifact weapons, Blizzard's focus increased on endgame systems that revolve around "borrowed power".

Source: Buffed

More is not always better

Already Battle for Azeroth shows very nicely that the system of "borrowed power" has its pitfalls. Instead of balancing the classes better, the designers struggled to bring the systems around the Azerite objects and Co. to a functioning level. You only need to be on our side look for Rextroy and gets various examples of how broken the BfA systems are even now.

And if we look at the previous beta of Shadowlands, the developers will fare no better with the new "borrowed power" systems. We get various pact skills, which have to work reasonably well for all roles, the umpteen soul bond skill trees and legendary effects. Balancing all of this alongside the actual class design is an impossibility. In beta, we currently have specializations that deal twice as much damage as other play styles. We have Pact skills that are so powerful they had to be toned down by 200 percent and class skills that haven't worked properly since Alpha. The developers know that they could never have released the game like this without causing a shit storm. The Postponement of the release date of WoW: Shadowlands proves that from my point of view.

The only stupid thing is that a few weeks of extra time won't solve this problem. You have too many interlocking systems, too many classes, too many levers. They created a complexity monster that nobody asked for, and now the only way to tame this monster is to cut off its head – which they won't.

WoW: Shadowlands – Feature Trailer Introduces New Expansion

Missed time to restart

I find it particularly sad that we are dealing with a) a dilemma with an announcement (thanks to our experience with Battle for Azeroth and the constant feedback from the alpha and beta testers) and b) with a view to the values ​​and Level Squish, which will be available with Shadowlands, just now is actually the perfect opportunity to take all systems back a bit, get back to the roots and design a character progression that is optimally designed for level 60 characters . Rumor has it that WoW (buy now ) Classic aktuell nice shows how such a simple system, which relies on talent trees, loot and item improvements via enchantments, can be extremely motivating (despite the catastrophic balance from back then).

The developers have now missed this point in time. In the expansion to Shadowlands, the level levels, item levels as well as damage and healing numbers will increase again, and the jump will probably be much too big again, because all of the systems introduced in the new add-on that have an enormous impact on the To have an impact on the strength of a hero. Will the designers then dare to step back? I strongly doubt it. I also doubt that we will ever get a new class as long as Blizzard relies on such complex, extremely laboriously balancing progression systems that have a lifetime of just one expansion. WoW could use fresh blood in the form of a new archetype.

how do you see it? Do you like the systems that give you enormous power to expand and then fall away? Or do you see similar problems as Karsten? Let us know in the comments!

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