06Nov

Post-BlizzCon 2017: The Unknown Mysteries of Battle for Azeroth

Battle for Azeroth End-Game

So the first thing we will do in Battle for Azeroth is to seek allies and resources in Kul’Tiras (Alliance) and Zandalar (Horde).

There are three zones in Zandalar and three zones in Kul’Tiras. We level up from level 110 to 120. Approximately 3 levels per zone. That accounts for 9 levels. There is one level in the air that apparently we might earn while doing scenarios gathering Azerite from Isles; and at some point the Horde will go to Kul’Tiras and assault Alliance PvE objectives there, and the Alliance will also go to Zandalar to do the same against Horde settlements.

So in summary these six zones draw a parallel with the Broken Isles experience from level 100 to 110 (through Azsuna, Val’sharah, Highmountain, and Stormheim).

However, there is a big chunk of content that Blizzard did not mention in both panels at BlizzCon 2017. What is that? End-game content. Where is my Battle for Azeroth’s end-game max level 120 Suramar-content equivalent zone? It doesn’t feel like the Horde will get THAT in Zandalar, nor the Alliance in Kul’Tiras. Unless the elusive end-game is a phased Kul’Tiras with level 120 Alliance targets (for the Horde players), and a phased Zandalar with level 120 Horde PvE targets (for the Alliance players).

Why would Blizzard Entertainment purposely not mention what zone we will go to at level 120? Suspicious? Yes. Of course, we will have to find out either at a later time (i.e. GamesCom), or when Technical Alpha or Beta starts.

Could Kezan be that level 120 end-game content? Well, that doesn’t feel like making much sense. The hook for the leveing up experience through Azsuna, Val’Sharah, Highmountain and Stormheim was really to help each native faction’s problems to then earn their help in securing each Pillar of Creation.

In Battle for Azeroth the hook to going to Zandalar is to gain the trust of the Zandalari so they join the Horde and to contribute their naval fleets. On the Alliance side, to gain the trust of the Kul’Tirans so they join the Alliance and to contribute with their naval fleets. The second hook is collecting Azerite.

So why do we need their fleets? To collect the Azerite from Isles. But these are 3-player scenarios, so that is definitely not the end-game zone Suramar represented; and thus not the purpose of the expansion. Those isle scenarios are the main source of Azerite for your Heart of Azeroth armor synergy.

That means that the Suramar-equivalent for level 120 players is not Zandalar and Kul’Tiras. It is Kalimdor and Eastern Kingdoms (most likely). It is the Battle for Azeroth. Alliance vs Horde. That’s the purpose of the expansion this time around.

So a huge question is lingering there. A missing piece or pieces in a large puzzle. And [Blizzard] did not feature it at BlizzCon. So we are left with a mystery, and what do we do when we are challenged with a mystery? We use our imagination using the pieces Blizzard did give us to fill the blanks, and connect the dots.

Does that mean the old World: Kalimdor and Eastern Kingdoms, are the level 120 end-game zones? Will the old world be revamped using phase technology so that low-level players and level 120 players co-exist in the same region separated by phased versions of each zone?

That would mean new level 120 quests in any of these zones? Tirisfal Glades, Darkshore, Arathi Highlands — or wherever these 2 races move into to progress that story of moving into a new location? Wlll there be more Old world zones included as level 120 end-game content?

I can’t really see the only Warfront being the only and main plate of end-game content for us to feast in half the expansion. Feels like a cooperative 20-player Garrison focused only in Arathi. Could Arathi be phased to be the Suramar of this new expansion?

 

Otherwise, where is the Suramar of 8.1? Where is the Broken Shore of 8.2? Where is the Argus of 8.3? It as heck is not Kul’Tiras or Zandalar.

Legion 7.0 was about collecting the ingredients: Artifact power and the Pillars of Creation. Battle of Azeroth 8.0 is about collecting the ingredients: Azerite and Allies with a naval fleet.

Legion 7.2 took us to the goal of collecting the Pillars of Creation: to seal the Tomb of Sargeras. What is Battle for Azeroth 8.2 raid?

Legion 7.3 took us to Argus to defeat the Burning Legion. Battle for Azeroth 8.3 in theory should bring us to a major conflict between Anduin and Sylvanas — and that means PvE and PvP content in Kalimdor and Eastern Kingdoms.

Maybe the answer lies in these two map (shown below)? Maybe the entire blue-colored portion in the map is the level 120 Horde playground with phased level 120 content where we have multiple PvE quests and targets? Likewise for the Alliance in Kalimdor? If that is the case, and this hasn’t been confirmed in any way, is that entire blue-colored area ripe with Horde-flavored World Quests?

What is proven so far is that the Draenei and Blood Elves are staying in their current city. Will that change beyond Patch 8.0, who knows. The Forsaken and the Night Elves on the other hand remain the only evicted races, but Blizzard hasn’t revealed yet (as of the posting of this article) where they might live from now on.

Alex Afrasiabi: “Well, Silvermoon and Exodar are still Alliance and Horde, respectively. We will have fiction in place. Obviously, those two kinda have become the last bastions of their factions in– maybe a way in for those factions as well, and we will be sure to use them in this battle.”

… Mysterious words.

 

Post-BlizzCon 2017 The Unknown Mysteries of Battle for Azeroth
1. Kalimdor Cities2. Eastern Kingdoms Cities3. Battle for Azeroth: Mysteries4. Battle for Azeroth: End Game

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BlizzCon 2019 Panel Transcripts

 

Tomas Hernandez is owner of Blizzplanet.com since 2003. I post news about World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, Diablo III, Hearthstone, Overwatch, Heroes of the Storm, Blizzard Careers, and the Warcraft film. Blizzplanet is a leading fansite covering news about upcoming Blizzard Entertainment licensed products. I also post previews and reviews. I have interviewed book writers and Blizzard game developers. I was previously an employee of the OGaming Network (2003), and IncGamers (2008-2010). I was a guest newsposter for GosuGamers (World of Warcraft) a few years ago and for Diablofans.com (formerly Diablo3.com) ***Fans who would love to watch Blizzard-related panels and appreciate our efforts can support Blizzplanet's patreon in a monthly-basis, or a one-time basis. Our staff are volunteer fans like you. Your donations will help us travel to all the Blizzard events we attend year-round to bring you the latest interview with the developers, photos, and panel videos (where allowed).

7 thoughts on “Post-BlizzCon 2017: The Unknown Mysteries of Battle for Azeroth

  1. I think that my question is if the “EK for alliance, Kalimdor for Horde” thing is meant to be permanent or just a temporary situation.

    In the same way that it feels really unfair for some races to be uprooted from their ancestral homes, perhaps continental hegemony for each faction would be indeed the best way for a lasting truce, if not peace.

    It would be interesting if this happens to be indeed the long term plan, but are they willing to shake up things so much?

    1. Well, to me it would make sense to move all Horde to Kalimdor, and
      all Alliance to Eastern Kingdoms. they have the phasing technology to
      keep the level 1-110 leveling experience intact, and then switch you
      from level 110-120 and beyond into the new status quo using a phased
      version.

      What would make this radical change
      interesting is the introduction of Allied Races. What if you start a
      level 20 Allied Race starting location and leveling experience in the
      Horde-only Kalimdor phased version instead of the old-school starting
      location? That would feel different in a sense, even creating new
      contemporary quests.

      By that I mean this: the old level
      1-90 quests are not contemporary with a Nightborne storyline. I mean,
      could you imagine a level 20 Nightborne starting in Silvermoon City
      reliving the Cataclysm quests, going through the Dark Portal into
      Outland at level 60, then going to Icecrown to kill Arthas the Lich
      King? Sounds Absurd.

      I say — Allied Races should have
      their own unique level 20-120 leveling experience. Or make them just
      start at the lowest level of the expansion which in this case would be
      level 110.

      Starting at level 20 I think is way too
      exagerated to level to 120 to unlock Heritage Armor. It is a terrible
      idea considering everyone wants to unlock at least 3 Allied Races, and
      future ones.

      1. As good as this sounds, even Blizzard’s resources are limited. I would already be happy if the introduction of the allied races makes us really experience the depth of their lore.

      2. Would be cool, yet highly unlikely with the resources that would be spent. That’s the major issue with adding any new races, the leveling experience will always be outdated for them.

        Even with the scaling leveling being present through all the game, it still means that any character has to go “back on time” when they reach 60 to go to Outland or Northrend.

        So yeah, it won’t make any “in game” sense so you gotta see your leveling experience with these new races as non canon, though I do agree with the idea that it would make more narrative sense for the allied races to start at 110, it would give them a very unfair advantage in terms of investment. People would just make allied races to bypass the leveling haha!

        I think we are stuck with that, at best we can have a disclaimer that, IDK, Chromie is sending you back in time so you can experience this world you have been so cut off from, like your whole leveling experience is a Caverns of time instance. Heck, maybe you have Chromie in the “Adventure Guide” explaining this to you.

    2. While we can’t rule it out, hitting the reset button with us being where we were before the
      expansion started sounds cheap. Then again you are right: Having the two sides seperated by so much distance would rob WoW of much of its potential for tension.

      There might be a plot twist like: The Horde retakes the Blackrock Mountain with the surrounding territory, while the Alliance takes Dire Maul.

      1. Yet in a way, having the continents divided itself is a gridlock that makes the tensions everpresent, yes, but unyielding in results and stagnant.

        With one continent per faction, at least each would be able to truly consolidate their power and advance with more stability, which would benefit Azeroth in the long run. This in turn would make any new territory a new scenario for war, which I think could be a good way of preserving the conflict.

        Personally, I would have preferred if both continents had been split in half rather than a continent each. The divide for EK is easier, on the Thandol Span. North for the horde, south for the Alliance.

        For Kalimdor, I would actually have the horde loose Orgrimmar and Durotar, with the divide happening on the scar in the Barrens, folowing west to give Stonetalon to the alliance, and Desolace to the horde. Thunder Bluff becomes the new Horde capital, the orcs resettle on Dustwallow. Mulgore and the revitalized Desolace serve as food suppliers.

  2. Well I think we miss a simple solution regarding where the Forsaken and Night Elves are going to live now: Silvermoon(one half of the city is free for rent) and Azurmyst Isles(a lot of free space). This would give Blizzard a reason to update these places.

    But speaking of these two races we forget there are a lot of minor Horde powers in the Eastern Kingdoms in peril no one asked about. The Renvantusks are probably save, but what about Okril’lon Hold in the Blasted Lands, with the Dark Portal being a major strategic assess? Stonard, the Blackrock clan, the Dragonmaw clan… I can’t see a bright future for them in an Alliance-controlled continent. Oh and let us not forget the Frostwolves. Could Thrall return with a vengeance story?

    My best guess at how it plays out before the next expansion hits:

    Sylvanas’s rule in Undercity is challenged by the Desolate Council, a group of Forsaken seeking deat since they see no reason to go on. At the same time Stromgarde is retaken by Danath Trollbane, with the Worgen making major moves, maybe taking Southshore. Genn is openly vowing to retake Lordaeron. Meanwhile in Silithus the Alliance manages to take a major load of Azerite from the Horde and ships it to Teldrassil. Sylvanas knows the power of this material and leads a naval attack on Darkshore and Teldrassil(bypassing Ashenvale) to take it back. Something happens and the Azerite explodes, setting Teldrassil on fire.

    The Alliance retaliates…

    This would give both factions a reason to fight for, without making one the big bad. Would Sylvanas order the torching of Teldrassil in cold blood, I can’t see the rest of the Horde standing with her.

    The efforts of Horde and Alliance to have Kul’Tiras/Zandalari join them is pretty logical. Who has controle over the sea has the initiative to attack the other continent. With Azshara appearing I guess we will have a major naval battle between the factions in patch 8.1 or so. Suddenly she and her Nagas appear, sinking the majority of both fleets, ensuring she is the queen of the oceans.

    We deal with this, but I hope we don’t kill her. Kezan being just a dungeon is a heavy blow already.

    As for the endgame: With the Naga defeated both factions resume the war. No distractions and no mercy anymore. Every place of major strategic importance is a battlefield. I don’t know where the last raid starts, but having it being Stormwind would make for a nice tribute to Warcraft 1 and the Siege of Orgrimmar. The Horde would win and major lore figures on both sides would die. Before there can be any victory celebration or even a burial of the death though, we see darkness falling as the forces of N’Zoth make their move, attacking the exhausted Horde/Alliance forces.

    As I said, this is only my best guess.

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