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The QueueFeb 5, 2018 12:41 pm CT

The Queue: It’s Wednesday again?

Oh. It’s not Wednesday? Are you sure? Completely sure? Absolutely, completely sure?

Hm. Then I really do wonder why I’m here. But as I am here, I suppose I should answer your questions.


KALCHEUS ASKED:

I may ask this again when the new Q posts, but do you think the Artifacts will retain their special abilities post-Legion? The thought of a Zandalari Warrior wielding Strom’kar in Throne of Thunder fills me with glee.

I think these fun bonus abilities will stick around. They’re mostly cosmetic things that are related to the weapon itself, and aren’t a game power thing at all. (Trolls’ reaction to Strom’kar being an exception… though at this level does it really matter if you can go to Throne of Thunder and make NPCs run around in fear? If they had any sense, they’d do that whether you had Strom’kar or not.)

However, I do wonder about the long-term fate of Artifacts overall. It sounds like some of their abilities are going to be rolled up into the class itself, so… will we wind up with these Artifacts collecting dust in our bags, without any abilities at all? (And will we even be able to keep them in our bags, or are they going to be dramatically destroyed in the fires of Mount Doom to explain why we aren’t using them anymore?) Will they be just another weapon for alts leveling through Legion? (Because, honestly, who wants to do that grind again?)

The fun stuff is definitely the most likely to stick around. And, really, why would you throw Strom’kar into Mount Doom when it’s so funny to watch the Trolls in Throne of Thunder freak out about it? I say you keep that sucker, no matter what the game says you’re supposed to do with it.


GALDWYNN SAID:

I really want to replace Garrosh with Magni in Hearthstone. I would pay $5 for a hero, but not $10. It feels kind of silly to be quibbling over an extra $5, but in my mind it feels too expensive. I’d buy Alleria too if it were $5.

At least I have Nemsy.

I have Alleria, and I both enjoy having the skin and regret the purchase. I agree that $10 feels like a lot for a cosmetic skin and a couple of voice lines and I wish I hadn’t thrown that money at, essentially, nothing. But at the same time, your hero becomes your identity in a Hearthstone game and… ugh, more Orcs? There are just so many Orcs in every game Warcraft touches. Hearthstone doesn’t even market itself as “Heroes of Warcraft” anymore. It’s just Hearthstone. With Orcs.

If you want to pick who you play, whose voice lines you hear drone over and over, whose face you have to stare down each game… there just aren’t a lot of options. Some classes have no alternate portraits at all. (Sorry, Druids, it’s Malfurion or bust.) And in fairness, there are as many free heroes as pay-for heroes. Maiev, Nemsy, and Liadrin are all free if you do certain things, while Alleria, Magni, and Medivh are $10 each. (Tyrande and Khadgar are both unavailable right now, but both cost cash.)

Honestly, I think the mix of pay for and freebie options has been okay, but I’d like to see more new heroes in general. Each class should have one alternate at least and, please, enough with the Orcs. And there’s still a split of around 50/50 for free/pay for heroes, then we all get some options even if we don’t want to spend. (Or even if we regret spending later, but that hero skin was just too cool to ignore.)


ENO SAID:

73 attempts now, no luck.
12 more days!

I see what your problem is here. You still have hope for rare drops. I, who have given up hope and no longer bother farming these holiday events, live in freedom and joy. I don’t have to keep count of dungeon runs to track which alts have and haven’t been. I don’t need a spreadsheet. I can just play the game, cheerful and oblivious to this current grind.

All you have to do is give up! It’s great!


SPENCER MORGAN ASKED:

Q4tMitch: what would you think of a pvp-mode that tasked players on both teams with painting the battleground either blue (Alliance) or red (Horde)? The goal being to cover a greater percent of surface area compared to the other team (original idea please don’t steal).

I pointed this question out to Mitch, who replied, “Okay, well, kudos for the Splatoon reference, but also I specifically said last week I won’t see questions that aren’t posted in Monday’s Queue.” So my advice is try again for tomorrow.


SHIALAWOOF SAID:

Really hoping we’ll see Wrathion again in BfA. The Legion was a sideshow, his beef is with the Old Gods.

Wrathion was such a fascinating character in Mists, and it feels like all of his potential was squandered. I could see him sitting out Warlords because it’s our little time travel adventure that has no real impact on the world, and we saw a couple of hints he was keeping an eye on us… but then? Then?

Then nothing. He was warning us of dire threats all the way back in Mists, but when the Legion shows up on our doorstep, there’s not a single whisper of his presence. He was at least mentioned in Warlords, but now he’s completely gone. Perhaps there’s some elaborate backstory that explains his absence, but it’s now been five years since we’ve seen him in game. He’s been left alone so long that by now a lot of players have probably even forgotten him. (I know, I know, you Queuvians are dedicated players and lore nerds and know all about Wrathion. But I don’t think the average player is in the same boat.)

Here’s to hoping he re-emerges, but I do wonder if Blizzard has ignored this storyline too long.


TAUREN IT UP ASKED:

Q4tQ: In the spirit of enough never being enough, I’ve already seen some folks asking what the next allied races will be. We know Zandalari and Dark Iron Dwarves are next, but interview drops about Draenor Orcs as well as fan speculation about Differently Shaped Humans seem to be just as rampant as the furry community’s hopes, prayers, and assumptions that Vulpera and Sethrak will be added.

Really, my question is this: what should an allied race release schedule be? Should players expect something new with every patch? Given that they’re mostly just recycled skeletons and retextured characters already in-game I’ve seen people claim it’s “not a big deal to do that”. Personally I’d rather anticipate something like the next expansion bringing another 6 at most because that feels more realistic. Even if we do get 2 more races per patch, players will just run out of empty character slots and get burned out on leveling alts that much quicker.

I definitely think there’s a lot of potential for Allied Race burnout. There was a conversation in the comments about what class to play as an Allied Race if you’ve played them all (or played the ones you’re interested), and that’s the boat I’m already in, with only four races available. How many alts can one really play? How many times do we want to go through the same old content and gear up new characters? (Or pay $60 to level boost them?)

However, I suspect the real enthusiasm about new Allied Races is due to people waiting for the race they really want to play to show up. We have tons of Nightborne and Void Elves and Highmountain Tauren now because they’re there and they’re new and, really, this late in the expansion what else are you going to do but level a new alt? But when it comes to regularly adding new Allied Races, I think there’s a huge burnout factor here. Woo! I just leveled a Void Elf, but now Blizzard added High Elves and I really want a High Elf... There’s only so long that cycle can continue before all enthusiasm about leveling (or paying to race change or paying to boost) is gone. WoW’s leveling and gearing up process is fun the first time. And maybe the second time. But by the third time you’re really starting to think “ugh, this scenario again?”

I suspect this early enthusiasm will die out (only to be rekindled by the next round of races that seem due to launch with the expansion). But if Blizzard pushes an aggressive ongoing Allied Race rollout? I think that’s just a recipe for burnout, and the more races released, the more likely the burnout. (Or, for those gotta catch ’em all players, lack of character slots.)

We’re set to get at least some more Allied Races regardless… but even if we just get an Alliance and a Horde option with each major patch, that’s a lot of new races. I’m getting burned out on the thought of leveling just thinking about that many new races.

And that’s all for today, folks. Come back tomorrow to catch Mitch in action and I will return to answer your questions on Wednesday. (So don’t let Mitch sidetrack you tomorrow — remember to leave me some answerable questions, okay?) I’ll see you in the far-flung future of Wednesday!

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