Heart of Azeroth
Ion: Now an all-new feature. It wasn’t mentioned in the features trailer. The Battle for Azeroth is a battle between the Alliance and the Horde for control of our world; but it is also a battle in which we will all be asked to stand up to safeguard our world. We need to fight for it. For its survival. And in the aftermath of the Legion’s attack, our world is actually direly wounded; and Magni (the speaker for Azeroth), speaker for her Worldsoul, will reach out to us as some of its greatest champions, and summon us. Where we will commune with the Worldsoul. The very beginning of her journey, and we will receive a gift. A gift from Azeroth, herself.
An artifact-quality medallion called the Heart of Azeroth. Now the artifact weapons that you currently wield, those will be conceded to history. They will receive a proper send off. The story is yet to be told, but… we will get there. But your companion in your journeys throughout the Battle for Azeroth will be this medallion known as the Heart of Azeroth; and as Azeroth herself suffers, she bleeds. Her life essence actually seeps out throughout the world.
It is incredibly powerful. The substance known as Azerite; and the unique property of this medallion is that when you encounter Azerite, when you come across it, a portion of that power will be re-absorbed, reconstituted into this medallion — into this Heart of Azeroth.
Unlike the Artifact weapons that you wielded in Legion, this artifact isn’t something that you are going to customize, doesn’t have a huge tech tree to it; but what it does do is that it serves as an incredibly potent power source that will unlock latent properties in many of the pieces of armor that you are going to come across, and acquire throughout your journeys.
We are going to talk a lot more about this system in detail right back here at 4pm in our Gameplay and Systems Deep Dive panel, but let me give you a quick overview, and then Russ Petersen and others from the team will dive much more deeply at that point.
This is an early UI concept art for how this might play out. Here you see a helmet, and this concentric circles, each reflect tiers of powers, where you can choose one tier from each ring (One power from each ring); and your ability to access these tiers — to unlock them — would depend on how strong your amulet is. A stronger helmet would require more levels in your amulet to equip, to access, but basically when we looked at the artifact system, there were a lot of elements of progression that worked very well.
There were others such as making hard choices between empowering one spec weapon versus another. That wasn’t so great. Or lots of the inventory clutter. Things like that. We are looking to improve a lot of the aspects of the system. We also want to give ongoing options for choice and customization. Rather than the artifact weapon systems, we made tons of choices back in September when you were first filling out the tree; but it is been largely linear progression since then.
In this world, each piece of armor — in a handful of slots that we selected, we currently have 3 in mind — we will offer potential for customization and choice in a handcrafted way. These are not random traits, unlike the Netherlight Crucible. A helm is a helm, is a helm, and you can pick what you want to suit your playstyle, to suit your needs as you progress through the world.
Again, more about this later.
NEXT: ISLAND EXPEDITIONS
|WORLD OF WARCRAFT: BATTLE FOR AZEROTH PANEL TRANSCRIPT|
|1. Battle for Azeroth||2. Zones of Kul'Tiras||3. Zones of Zandalar||4. Zone Flow|
|5. Allied Races||6. Leveling Improvements||7. Heart of Azeroth||8. Island Expeditions|
|9. Warfronts||10. Battlegrounds & Arenas||11. World PvP||12. Dungeons & Raids|