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Discussion > WoWMay 14, 2024 8:00 am CT

What would real encumbrance look like in World of Warcraft?

Bag space has been an issue in World of Warcraft since way back in the days of Classic, when you sometimes had to make the choice between dumping that neat healing potion you just found or the stack of Zhevra Hooves you spent an hour collecting 10 levels ago. (Were you ever really walking all the way back to the Barrens to finish it? No, I didn’t think so.) Who else was excited to find Haris Pilton selling Portable Holes in Shattrath City, or heaved a huge sigh of relief when quest items got their own storage? I know I was.

For the most part, encumbrance in World of Warcraft has been handwaved, allowing people to store hundreds or even thousands of oversized animal hides on their person without affecting movement speed in the slightest. Occasionally a quest item will be too big to fit in the adventurer’s bags and slow you down for a minute, but there’s rarely an explanation given as to why my tiny little goblin engineer can fit two dozen stacks of ore and stone into the same sack as this week’s quota of fishing poles and not break anything, let alone carry the whole thing around. In fact, until a recent short story mentioned Alleria tucking an entire suit of armor into an enchanted bag, most of the canonical references to magical storage have involved powerful archmages. Perhaps that’s the reason the Azureweave Expedition Pack takes a total of eighty-one pieces of scavenged Wildercloth to craft, as well as several rather expensive magical reagents. Have we been dealing with extra-dimensional storage this whole time?

So what do you think WoW would look like if real encumbrance rules were applied? Would quest givers be a little more sparing in their collection requests? Would we employ our vast army of mounts in hauling all of it around? Or are champions of Azeroth just that strong after killing so many ancient dragons and death gods?

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