I can’t believe it. After what, a year of planning, and a PTR – Public Test Realm – and all the hype about a better leveling experience and the second “Big Squish” and more challenge, they messed it up.
Over the years, Blizzard has made the game easier to level at least at lower levels with Heirlooms, and easier dungeons and Wow Tokens and lots of other things. I came back to WOW in May 2017 and played through December 2017 when all the hype was going strong about the new expansion and how they were going to change the leveling experience. As some of the changes began going up on the PTR, I got over there and tried them out. Turns out I still had a PTR account, which I had signed up for years ago – they keep you signed up if you ever do. Well I found the PTR experience a real drag for reasons that I’ve talked about before. As a quick example, as a level 110, in a level 80-90 area – Pandaria – the mobs were leveled up to my level. So what does level 80-90 mean if the mobs are going to jack up to 110 to follow you? Who knows what changes and tweaks they have been making in the last seven months, but it doesn’t sound good based on these launch results.
Well, maybe now that the population in general is seeing the new leveling / progression design, they are not as psyched as all those folks that Blizzard was listening to a year and a half ago when they started talking about it.
It will be interesting to “Watch from Afar” as this plays out. I have a “Trial” account that I can use to see what things look like from 1-20, but that’s not all that interesting when the cap is 110.
Anyway, I’m having a great time since December 2017 with Final Fantasy XIV.
May you walk in the light of the Crystal,
[I don’t have pictures from the Antorus fight, but here are some pictures from Dungeons I’ve played in Wow. ] I saw this article in PC Gamer today.
It sounds like he must have been wearing a diaper, but never the less, that’s a lot of work.
In World of Warcraft, players are often willing to go to extremes just to say they’ve done it. Some might spend all their time grinding out hard to get achievements while others will run a raid boss hundreds of times in hopes of getting some rare loot. But Rextroy is of a higher caliber. He beat the first raid boss of Antorus, The Burning Throne all by himself—and it only took him a measly eight hours. His reward? I’m not sure exactly. Bragging rights? I guess?
You can watch the whole video here. It’s been compressed to about 13 minutes. You may want to watch the first few minutes and then skip to near the end to see him hiding in the pool to avoid the huge AOE attack that is supposed to challenge a Raid group of 10-15 players.
I’m sick of playing it and sick of hearing about it. Here’s an example of a 97 Mage in the area near Kahdgar’s hangout in Talador. I’ve played through this area with every class, and taken out No’losh, the Elite swamp walker, every time on Live. But in PTR, he’s a 99 – level scaled up above my 97 mage and he can’t be solo’d even with the Mage helper Serena. And another thing. Notice the fight with the Shambler and Bloodpetals.
They almost got me again since they gang up on you outside the cave. But notice the Bloodpetals give the same XP as the Shamblers? Huh? Those little guys were weaker in Live. Supposed to be since there is a gang of them. But not in PTR and likely not in 7.3.5 either. The level scaling has so many issues you would not believe.
I just found a neat feature. /played which is a chat command that displays the time played for the current character since creation and in the current level.
Update: See below.
Since I reupped in May, I’ve been leveling some toons pretty efficiently. I typically used dungeons to level 60, then quests through Outland, Northrend, Vashj’ir and Pandaria. Some dungeons were played after level 60, but primarily quests were used to level. At this point, they continued with Quests and Treasure Hunting through Draenor. Treasure hunting gives about 1.5 times the XP of a quest in the area, so using a Treasure Hunting AddOn can be a very efficient way to level, especially if you can fly through Draenor.
The goal is to get to 101 before going to Legion. All the characters have 4 Heirloom armor pieces, an Heirloom weapon and a necklace. At level 101, there is a jump in Heirloom item level, which will help a lot when starting Legion. Here are the play times for some of these characters leveled this way to about 100:
Leveling to 100ish
Before taking these characters to Draenor, I took a Demon Hunter through the DH starting area, and then directly to Draenor to most efficiently get Draenor Pathfinder. So all other characters could fly in Draenor. As these characters reached Level Cap of Outland, and Northrend they moved on to the next area. Before moving to Draenor, some of the classes were taken to 91 to boost the Heirloom Item Level, but in general this is not that necessary. The Pandaria and Draenor starting areas are quite friendly and reasonable even with green level gear.
I’ve been playing the PTR [ Public Test Realm] to see what Level Scaling looks like. So far I’m not a fan. Update below.
It’s a real drag.
Classes do better that have self heal – Priest, Paladin, Shaman, Druid, Warlock, Demon Hunter obviously. Mages are going to be at a disadvantage with no good tank pet and no self heal. Shaman and Balance Druid are under powered and will do a lot of self healing. With their pet, Hunters are fine in 10-20 areas that I’ve tried.
Priest and Paladin and Warlock do all right, but it’s a real drag. Lots of healing of course. Each major quest gets you 7.5% of a level. And higher repair bills too. Why isn’t repair gone or zero cost? The problem with it taking longer to kill mobs is that they have time to gang up on you.
Here they come
Self Healing Frequently
I have completed the quest chain to obtain the Grand flying faction mounts from Pandaria. Whew. It took a month or so to get Exalted with the Dominance Offensive faction and then a few hours to grind through the quests to finally Ring the Bell and get the mount. Of course you can get the Armored version of the mount for Gold when you reach Exalted, but I prefer the non-armored versions of the mounts. For the non-Armored version, you need to complete the quest chain, the last few of which require Exalted with your faction Rep in Pandaria. The Guides know all.
Ok. So it’s Wow’s 13th Anniversary and we got glasses and a XP Buff with a nice Tabard for the rest of the month.
Last time we talked about how Tera changed the Mystic skills sometime around May 2017 when I wasn’t playing. And they basically messed up leveling by removing the tank pet which used to arrive at level 4 and delayed it until level 50. Update: See at the end
Well let’s take a look at the Wow Warlock, which is essentially the same class as Tera Mystic.
Notice you get a Summon Imp spell – which is a ranged DPS pet that follows you around – at level 5. This is not a totem that is fixed in place for a limited time, but a pet that does not time out, follows you around and attacks what you attack. You get control of it – Move it, Passify it, Sick it on a target, etc. – at level 10. You get the Voidwalker, which is the tank pet, at level 20. There are lots more pets, some of them are higher level talents, which means you get choices about which ones etc.
At the Blizzcon 2017 Q and A this year we got a question about flight in new areas. And again we got the same ole, same ole about how we were supposed to “Experience the New Content from the Ground At Least Once.” Well I’m not buying it actually.
Here’s a description of some changes to leveling coming out of Blizzcon 2017.
I have to say I’m skeptical. At least out of the gate.
Here’s the presentation at Blizzcon 2017.
By the way, let’s not forget how Auto Leveling works – at least in Guild Wars 2 where it was first implemented Game Wide, at least as far as I’m aware. Officially it’s called Dynamic Level Adjustment.
Unlike Wow Legion areas Level Scaling, GW2 Auto Leveling changes your level to match – roughly – the zone or instance where you are working. But there are two key features that Wow Legion didn’t do that GW2 also does:
- Your character is never “Up Leveled” so that you still can’t hunt in areas above your level, at least not without help. And in many cases, you simply can’t go to the higher area anyway. This is what you might expect. Yes, you will be up-leveled to 80 in Fractals of the Mist, one of the instances.
- The XP that you get for killing mobs and doing quests [Hearts and Events in GW2] scaled up to your level. So in GW2, there is no such thing as a “Trivial Quest”. So it’s not a waste of time to hunt in lower level areas. Well actually, if the zone is much lower than you are, your XP is actually reduced enough that you’ll likely move on, unless you would like to explore that area for an achievement. So as an 80, if you want to work all the starting areas [ 1 – 10 ] don’t expect rewards except the Exploring achievement.
- The Loot you get is always appropriate to your actual level. It’s not the best gear. White or Green and rarely Blue. But does make sense to hunt in a 60 area if you are already 80, and you’ll get some nice things. All crafting mats come from Dismantling Found gear, so hunting this way makes a lot of sense. To get explorer achievements you need to do all the Hearts – zone quests – and the loot / gold is appropriate to your level.
- When GW2 started, they got Auto Leveling wrong, and it was a real pain to move to harder areas. They leveled you to exactly the level of the mobs where you were, so it was a pain if you got jumped by more than one mob. Now the down-leveling is more like +3 to the mobs you are fighting and it’s completely reasonable. Here’s a post I did back in Sept 2013 about a year after GW2 released. They fixed this problem. Like I said, you are now working at about +3 to the mobs around you and that’s totally reasonable.
So how is Wow Level Scaling for Legion different?