Login with Patreon
The QueueDec 21, 2021 12:00 pm CT

The Queue: The Longest Dark

In a bit of an ironic twist, as we begin the kids’ holiday week off school — where the days stretch into nights, both stretching into infinity — it’s also the longest night of the year in my hemisphere. I hope The Queue stays warm tonight. It’s gonna be a long one.

This is The Queue, where you ask us questions and we answer them between sips of cocoa — or herbal tea.


QftQ: If the speculation that the next expansion will be the Dragon Isles is correct, who should the villain of that expansion be?

As it stands there’s not really any Dragon villains anymore. Murozond is pretty much the only notable candidate, but I think him being a centerpiece would make the expansion more timey whimy and higher concept then what I think the WoW community is looking for next. Plus the fact we already killed him might undercut his potential threat.

That means the best option might be to have a villain that’s wholly external to the Dragon Isles, and perhaps their invasion is part of the impetus for us to go there ourselves. Dare I say Azshara?

I’m not fully sold on Dragon Isles as the next expansion in terms of foreshadowing and prediction, but in terms of personal preference? Heck yeah. Dragons are cool, and the way each flight is constructed in WoW could lead us to another fun setup similar to Covenants, where we pledge help to each one in turn. But you’re right on the big question marks.

A Dragon-based expansion would probably have a lot of courtly-style intrigue — especially when we’re dealing in time travel, which would be a necessity if we were to finally take it to the Infinites. You can’t tell me there’s some kind of long-standing beef between the greens and the blues, but they’re outwardly friendly, but a push from a friendly adventurer would finally let them bury the hatchet in favor of sharing information.

Maybe I’ve been watching too much Wheel of Time.

Also, the wrinkle with the Infinites is that we can’t possibly avoid them being created in total. If we did, then events from previous expansions would be changed to the point that the story now would be completely altered. I’m not talking butterfly effect style, where one tiny change leads to bigger and bigger ones, but preventing the Infinite from every being created would cause great big ripples throughout major events as we experienced them. Heck, maybe we end up playing both sides, ensuring they’ll be created so we can truly defeat them. Courtly intrigue, indeed.

However, that said, I feel like a big weakness of designing stories around an MMO is that need for a big bad. A Dragon Isles expansion would be a great candidate for no central villain — or maybe the player is the semi-villain — but if there’s no big bad, there’s nobody to take down at the end of of a raid, so that really complicates things. It’s obviously a bit of a chicken-and-egg situation between narrative and raid design, and I’m obviously biased since raiding isn’t really my thing anymore. Maybe it would end up being a council fight, where we have to defeat-but-not-kill our former allies in order to get the job done.


Arrrgh now what.
My brother in law just sent me a game as a christmas present, is it still okay if my gift to him and my sister is cookies and pretzel turtles?

Like I don’t know why food doesn’t feel like a “real gift” but it’s not like pretzel turtles are even cheap to make lol.


I’m getting to the age where I prefer gifts which are consumables, just because dear god do we have a lot of clutter, and dear god is it tough to get rid of it sometimes. I don’t just mean eatables per se, but also stuff like childrens’ museum memberships are also fantastic, something we’d get a lot of use out of, and have the side benefit of not adding more clutter to my house.

Can you tell I’m in the middle of a bit of a clutter purge right now? Just in time to add even more crap to my house? I love this for me. At least both my kids are going through a growth spurt so all the clothes I just bought them won’t fit.

And, for what it’s worth, one year I made homemade truffles for everyone and people still ask me when I’m doing that again.


Q4TEsportsQueen: Blizzard announced the new format for 2022 Hearthstone Circuit. Big changes including phasing out the current Grandmaster’s system which seriously limits outward progression and places a higher emphasis on the open circuit. It also double the amount of competitors at world’s but keeps the same prize pool making it harder to make a living as a competitive player. Seems like people are divided on what this means for the health of the ecosystem long term. Also their creating a Battlegrounds official pro circuit which seems fun since it appears the be the more popular game mode to watch. Thoughts?

There seems to be a really big push-pull between the effort for longer-term financial viability of esports as a career for players contrasted against the ability to get fresh blood in the scene. The way most tournaments are structured, you can’t bring in new players without excluding older ones, making it a dicey proposition in both cases.

I don’t really know what the answer is. I do know that with the advent of things like Twitch it’s easier than ever to follow specific personalities you might enjoy that are associated with esports, which does make it seem more viable in a longer-term sense, since — for some — there are a number of robust revenue streams to pursue as opposed to just the big prize pool furnished by Game Company Inc. If you bust out of the pro scene, you can fall back on streaming or affiliate revenue while you lick your wounds, and the ability to get back into the new circuit seems a lot more viable as opposed to the, what, two or three relegation spots from the previous iteration.

I’m also excited to see how Battlegrounds shakes out. Though it does seem perhaps even more subject to RNG than Constructed, having those random power swings is always entertaining to watch. My favorite Overwatch League games, by far, are the All-Star Mystery Heroes games. Maybe I just like chaos.

I am a little leery though, because Battlegrounds is really the only Hearthstone mode I enjoy playing, and I’m a little concerned about how adding an esports framework to it may affect the way they balance the game in the months to come.

Blizzard Watch is made possible by people like you.
Please consider supporting our Patreon!

Join the Discussion

Blizzard Watch is a safe space for all readers. By leaving comments on this site you agree to follow our  commenting and community guidelines.

Toggle Dark Mode: