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WoWFeb 1, 2021 1:00 pm CT

Adventure Table finally gets a balance pass, but is it too little, too late?

This past Friday, Blizzard announced immediate hotfixes to the Shadowlands version of the Mission Table, rechristened the Adventure Table. Venthyr and Kyrian Covenant Adventurers received significant buffs to hopefully bring them in-line with the Necrolords, while the Night Fae received a nerf in the form of a bug fix, reducing the effectiveness of the Ardenweald Trapper’s damage debuff that had previously given members of that Covenant a laughably easy time with the Adventure Table.

It’s concerning that Blizzard waited this long to fix something that was obviously broken for months — I had been advising people to only run the Campaign missions on Night Fae, and to not bother upgrading the Adventure Table on any character, regardless of Covenant — while failing to address what makes it so unsatisfactory an experience to begin with (although as members of the Kyrian and Venthyr Covenants will tell you, it’s not fun to fail at missions you outlevel by 10).

The first issue is the inability to effectively judge success in advance of sending your Adventurers on a 4-12 hour mission. Sure, if your sword and shield numbers were both higher than the opponent’s, you’re pretty much guaranteed of success. As the missions got harder, though, and the various buffs and debuffs became a more important factor in success, they turned into a crapshoot, although Adventure Table addons are starting to do the math for you. It’s particularly annoying because we’d spent the previous three iterations being able to easily (with the exception of the totally unmissed Shipyard Table) hit 100% on our missions.

Another problem is having to wait to see how you did. With missions it made sense to send them out and wait for them to come back, but it’s now an auto-battler — why would you make us wait to see how the battle comes out? I’m already at the Table and a lot less likely to click the Skip to End button if I can see it unfold while I’m working on it. I understand not wanting us to be able to spam Adventures, but that’s already essentially controlled by the healing and new Adventure generation mechanisms.

Finally, most of the rewards make zero sense for the cost, especially with how tight the Anima supply is. Soul Ash missions don’t add enough Soul Ash to your total to really justify the Anima expense even without the potential for failure. Spending 50 Anima for the chance at a bag of fish? Not worthwhile at all. The Campaign rewards are nice — if you ignore the items suffering the lower ilevel issue that has plagued World Quests through most of the expansion — and should probably be done once for them, but other than that, why bother with spending Anima on Adventures or upgrades to the Table when there are so many better things to spend it on?

All told, the Adventure Table feels like a failure, and outside a gigantic overhaul in 9.1 I don’t see how it can be made viable. Heck, nerfing Night Fae may reduce the usage of the Table far more than buffing Kyrian and Venthyr increases it — particularly since this round of buffs may still not be enough to bring these Covenants up to par. I’m not going to suggest removing the feature at this point, but if Blizzard isn’t going to make the effort to fix the significant issues with it, they may as well abandon development because as it stands right now, bandaids can’t stop the bleeding.

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