BlizzCon 2016 World of Warcraft: What’s Next Panel Transcript

Class Updates

So not content, but also 7.1.5 gives us a first chance to really dig into a lot of the class changes that we made in Legion. Up until this point, we’ve mostly focused on fixing bugs. We focused on a lot of hotfix tuning, and balancing, and tweaking numbers; but 7.1.5 gives us a chance to look more deeply into the substance of class abilities, rotations, talents, things along those lines; and so there are a few things that are going to guide us as we approach those efforts.

So first off, we have a lot of data, lot of feedback, we can look at all of the talent roles across all 36 specs, and we definitely have heard and seen there are many situations where it feels like there’s a mandatory talent in a given row, or another rows there are talents that don’t really have a clear purpose, they never seem like they’re worth taking. You go to a website like Icyvein,s and it has a big red X through it like… this is never worth considering. That’s unfortunate. We would like to work on improving that diversity, and some of that’s going to be a matter of numbers changes. Sometimes the talent is perfectly well designed. It’s just undertuned or it’s overpowered.

In other cases, however, we need to rework the fundamental concept of that talent. or perhaps the thing that 98% of players take as a talent should just be a base part of the spec, and we should come up with something new. Let’s going to flesh out that row, and make it an interesting choice. That’s the type of thing that will happen in 7.1.5.

It’s of course an ongoing effort. But you will see some of it here. Next: Secondary Stats. Obviously, when we build our items, our level isn’t strictly keen, but the way the rewards are structured, when you go into a new tier, you are going into a new zone and you see something that is 15-20 item levels higher that anything you have seen before, the way this game has been designed that should be an exciting moment to should be a reward moment, and too often due to large disparities between the value of secondary stats, that’s not the case.

So this patch is also giving us the chance to take a look at secondary stats balance, trying to narrow that gap a little bit. It is great that if you are a fire mage, you love crit. It’s less great that you look at items without it or items with other stats that’s completely worthless.

There is a middle ground there. You can have value and excitement about some stats, while still keeping interest in all of them.

Next. This is kinda one of one of the most vague points here, but we have also heard a lot of feedback about just the feel of the flow of your rotations. Abilities that often come into conflict, abilities that are unclear, and 7.1.5 offers to us one of the first chances to try to address a lot of that feedback in the aftermath of launch, and they are pure mechanical improvements that we can make that aren’t about balance, but just about making playing your class a smoother, more pleasant experience all around.

And finally, definitely I have heard a lot about it, and seen a lot about this, and in the name of streamlining, in the name of focusing spec and class identity in the run up to Legion, we pruned, we got rid of a number of abilities (They are certainly ruined now after that pruning) to have structural growth. To maybe return some of those abilities. To maybe add some new ones. To flesh out toolkits.

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So for example, if you are a Hunter, and you are a Marksman, or a Beastmaster Hunter, you don’t quite feel like a Hunter because you don’t have any traps. We agree. It was a mistake to say that only Survival Hunter has traps. Survival can be the masters of traps, without being the only ones who have them.

There are times where we elevated spec identity at the expense of Class identity, and there are places where we can walk that back in the interest of everyone.

Or for example, if you are Rogue, and you have been running a lot of Mythic Keystone dungeons, and you still wish you had the ability of Shroud of Concealment so that you could sneak your team past some packs, and your group is really happy and excited to have a Rogue in the group. That could also be happening in 7.1.5. And by could, I mean is.

So that is Patch 7.1.5. A small, humble patch in the world of Legion. Featuring Season 3 of the Brawler’s Guild, Mists of Pandaria Timewalking, Micro Holidays, an art update to Blade’s Edge Arena, Class updates, and more; bug fixes, item rewards, all kinds of little things. That is the 7.1.5 package. Now, of course, the next question. When? When is this going to be on your hands? When will you learn more?… S-O-O-N!

(audience laughs)

Hazzikostas: No, actually… really soon. The second we get back from BlizzCon, we are going to work on taking down the 7.1 PTR, working to put 7.1.5 PTR up, you will see a ton of these changes there. Can’t wait to have people jump on, start giving us their feedback, and helping to find bugs, so that we can get it into your hands as quickly as possible, as all part of the steady stream of content.

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So 7.1.5. Small patch. What comes after 7.1.5? 7.2. Now, what possibly could Patch 7.2 be? What could that bring? Where might we be going?

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Next: Patch 7.2: Tomb of Sargeras

BlizzCon 2016: World of Warcraft: Legion -- What's Next Panel Transcript
PATCH 7.1.5
IntroTimewalkingBrawler's GuildMicro HolidaysBlade's Edge ArenaClass Updates
PATCH 7.2
Tomb of SargerasFlyingRaid ZoneDungeonPvP BrawlsArtifact Updates: Mechanics
Dungeon Updates & Patch 7.3 Argus

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