The sixth World of Warcraft expansion is in its final months, so lets review the past year. I’m going to cover the various new mechanics of the game, the goals I have planned before Battle for Azeroth, as well as my thoughts on the raiding and the storyline. To start off my Legion expansion final thoughts, I’ll simply say I really enjoyed this expansion. I think the story is just as interesting as it was for Wrath of the Lich King. The Legion has been an indefatigable foe for Azeroth for decades. It’s really cool to be apart of the final chapter (“if” it’s the final chapter).
The raiding content, I felt, was pretty epic. I really had fun taking down Xavius, Gul’dan, Kil’Jaeden and ultimately Argus himself. Blizzard devs deserve some mad props for some pretty fun and challenging new fight mechanics. This is also my first expansion participating in Heroic raid content. I have never gotten an Ahead of the Curve achievement before! The Humpday Heroes CTR raid team on Aerie Peak are a fantastic group of guys and gals! I’d say, with the exception of the Coven of Shivarra fight **, the heroic content was just the right amount of challenging.
** Next time Blizzard, let’s tweak that RNG algorithm on fights like Heroic Coven of Shivarra to be a little less random and a little more deliberate.
My Legion Expansion Goals
Beyond achieving Ahead of the Curve (which my raid team is 1 boss away from accomplishing) I have quite an ambitious list of goals to try to finish before Battle for Azeroth goes live. I feel like there is more I want to do at the end of this expansion that any other expansion. After hitting max level, the list of things to do are seemingly endless. Every class has a mount to unlock and an Order Hall campaign which awards titles and gear. Every spec has an artifact weapon campaign and 75 points to unlock in artifact power.
Of course, that makes leveling alts quite a daunting task, especially for an “alt-aholic” like myself. I have been working to complete the Order Hall quests, unlock all Class mounts for every class and acquire at least one hidden artifact weapon appearance. I am keeping track of my progress:
|Class||Order Hall||Hidden Appearance||Class Mount|
Unlocking the Class mount is probably the most arduous of the tasks, especially trying to grind out the 50 Marks of the Sentinax. It borders on insanity and masochistic. There are still a few exploration and collection achievements I’m trying to finish, as well a few more mounts to farm. It should be enough to keep me busy until the release of Battle for Azeroth.
Review of Order Halls
I know I was in the minority when I said I liked the Garrison from Warlords of Draenor. In fact I wasn’t even convinced that I was going to like Order Halls because I felt they were a step back from Garrisons. Blizzard successfully proved to me that Order Halls are fun; the quest campaign really improved my impression of Order Halls. I have unlocked the Order Hall for every class and I think my favorite is the Shaman Order Hall. I do really like the locations of the Paladin and Rogue Order Hall; the Warlock Order Hall seems to be the most confusing.
I’m glad they continued with the followers/champions. Having a pocket tank to level with is very helpful. I believe they are continuing this mechanic in Battle for Azeroth.
Review of Demon Hunters
Demon Hunters are the second hero class added to the game (Death Knights in Wrath of the Lich King were the first). This expansion was the perfect expansion to introduce the Demon Hunter class. I think we all knew this was coming eventually because the classes in Diablo 3 seemed to start mirroring in WoW. Also, the integral part Illidan plays in the story of the Legion gives credence to the introduction of the Demon Hunter class.
Of course I created a Demon Hunter. Just like everyone else, I was really looking forward to this class. I have leveled every class to a max level at some point and I do prefer melee classes. The Demon Hunter is a fun class to play. I really enjoy the mobility. I have not tried to tank yet but the various abilities and animations are really well done, though they do seem a little over powered. While I know a lot of folks were immediately jumping ship to make the Demon Hunter their new main, I wasn’t that sold on the class. I think it’s going to take something quite extraordinary to convince me to leave my paladin.
Other Game Mechanics
One of the biggest changes to the game, and probably the one everyone became obsessed over, were artifact weapons. Basically these are weapons that you obtained as part of your Class campaign. You empower your artifact weapon by acquiring artifact power which is awarded from missions, world quests and chests. Every class specialization has a unique artifact weapon; and some were very well-known (ex: Retribution Paladins can acquire Ashbringer, Enchancement Shaman can get Doomhammer). The more you do in-game the stronger the weapon becomes and the more appearances you can unlock.
Artifact weapons are one of my absolute favorite features of the expansion. Of course I obtained Ashbringer and I had to level a shaman for Doomhammer. (A quick side note, I really enjoy playing a shaman). The Shadow Priest artifact weapon is brilliant. It is possessed by an Old God and she whispers to you at random points during dungeons, raids and even killing random mobs. The whole mechanic was very well done and I’m looking forward to see how the story ends (as artifact weapons will not be part of Battle for Azeroth).
One final comment about a game mechanic introduced in this expansion: profession quests. In the beginning they made sense, but after trying to level several alts, each with a different profession, it was awful. Alchemy is probably the worst. If you want to advance the profession at all you have to complete a dungeon with an optional boss; good luck getting that quest done using the “Looking for Group” tool. Professions Should Not Be Gated!!
Outlook for Battle for Azeroth
I am cautiously optimistic about the next expansion. I’m not a big fan of the name; granted I also wasn’t a fan of “Mists of Pandaria” but it grew on me eventually. Just like Cataclysm after Wrath of the Lich King, the Battle for Azeroth expansion has a tough act to follow. I find it very odd that the unveiling of the expansion seemed lacking in new content and mechanics. I wonder if Blizzard is taking a new approach to unveiling content. Instead of “tipping their hand” too much, perhaps they are trying to bluff us all a little to surprise us more later. After subscriptions were bolstered by Legion, I would hate to see them decline again with another weak expansion.
Again, I’m remaining optimistic. Besides, these days I play to hang out with friends more than playing to win. I’m looking forward to another expansion of raiding with the Humpday Heroes!
If zombies attack the world, everyone will run and hide. Except for us gamers, of course. We’ve been waiting for this all our lives!