You’ll be able to turn off War Mode in any rested area in 8.1
It looks like War Mode may be getting a little change in WoW’s patch 8.1, according to a recent update on the PTR. With the update, players will be able to turn off War Mode in any rested area, instead of having to travel to Stormwind or Orgrimmar to do so. You’ll still need to be in either capital city to enable War Mode, however — this change only applies to disabling War Mode while you’re out in the fields of battle. Or, you know, an inn.
This change should help out players that were previously having difficulty getting groups together for dungeons. If a mixed group of War Mode and non-War Mode players tried to get together for a Mythic, they’d often find themselves unable to summon. Being able to simply ride out to the nearest rested settlement and toggle the switch from there should make things a little less complicated.
And it might just help a little bit with low-level players who find themselves camped while trying to complete quests. Lower level players don’t have nearly as many travel options as max-level players — trying to get back to Stormwind or Orgrimmar while being endlessly camped is a genuine challenge at lower levels. With the change, low-level players can simply find a nearby inn to disable War Mode and continue leveling in peace, instead of having to travel all the way back to their respective capitals.
What this change doesn’t do is address the oftentimes lopsided faction imbalances that come with engaging War Mode. There’s nothing that sucks the fun right out of World PVP like realizing you’re hopelessly outnumbered, with little you can do to alleviate the situation. Blizzard is trying to address this in 8.1 as well with the addition of the War Mode Call to Arms buff, but it remains to be seen just how effective that boost is going to be.
On the one hand, War Mode works for its intended purpose — players are now able to actively choose whether or not they’d like to engage in PVP, regardless of server choice. It’s exceptionally helpful for all those players who have been stuck on PVP servers for years because that’s where their friends happened to be, not because they actually enjoyed PVP. And for players that might not have been willing to invest time into creating or leveling a character on a PVP server, War Mode offers them an easy way to check out world PVP and see if it’s something they enjoy.
On the other hand, the introduction of War Mode really hasn’t done anything to address issues that have plagued PVP servers since they were first introduced. Lopsided faction imbalances, low-level ganking, corpse camping — it’s all still there the moment you turn War Mode on. It hasn’t gone anywhere, and it likely won’t be going anywhere anytime soon. Unfortunately, that’s the price of PVP — but at least with the upcoming changes, it’ll be a little easier to opt out if you’re not feeling up to the challenge.
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