Login with Patreon
The War Within > WoWMay 22, 2024 6:30 pm CT

The War Within is getting a new Story difficulty

A cadre of crab-legged nerub'ar stand upon a stone ledge, ready to fight.

A new “Story” difficulty has been added to Nerub’ar Palace — and only Nerub’ar Palace — in The War Within. This difficulty, which is designed for 1-10 players, immediately sparked discussion of whether this mode was similar to the follower dungeons added in Dragonflight. Follower mode seems to have been a big hit, allowing players with social anxiety, or who want to take it slow and explore, to enjoy the dungeon experience without having to be high enough level to one-shot everything.

This is what Blizzard has this to say about the new mode:

Originally Posted by Limestone (Official Post)

Throughout World of Warcraft’s history, many of the most epic moments in our stories have been told in dungeons and raids. With the recent introduction of Follower Dungeons, we’ve been experimenting with new ways for players to see those stories, especially for those who may not feel comfortable playing within the social expectations of group environments.

With Story difficulty in Nerub-ar Palace, our goal is to offer players a way to see the epic conclusion of Azj-Kahet’s story who may not see the end to that story otherwise…. This encounter features reduced combat complexity and difficulty, instead focusing on the narrative elements of the encounter. Story difficulty is intended to be experienced as a one-time chapter in the game’s story, but is repeatable for players who want to revisit that part of the adventure.

We currently plan to release this experience alongside the final wing of Looking For Raid difficulty, for players who’ve reached the appropriate point in the questing experience of The War Within. We’d love to hear your feedback on this feature once it’s released.

So what does all of this mean?

First of all, players will be able to make their way through the Nerub’ar Palace raid at their own pace, either solo or with a small group of friends. The reduced complexity means much lower chance of a wipe, and you probably won’t need to watch an hour of instructional videos just to stay alive. Both the lower difficulty and the smaller group size will reduce the possibility of toxic interactions between players. (Ever had a raid-wiping mechanic you didn’t recognize land on you two pulls in a row? It isn’t pretty.)

Story difficulty does not appear to be a place to collect transmog or other traditional raid rewards, and there is no mechanical value in playing it more than once. It will probably not be a place to learn the mechanics you’ll need to step up to higher difficulties; you’ll still need to queue for LFR to do that.

It is also not a faster way to complete the (allegedly required) raid quest and skip ahead of the hardcore raiders to the end of the story — at least unless we can convince the devs not to wait to release it until the last wing of LFR. (Hey, I can dream, can’t I?) It might be a good place to learn the layout of the raid, which is great for tactile learners like me, who have to walk around a little before I connect what I’m seeing to what the map shows.

Here’s hoping Story difficulty is successful, and that it eventually rolls out to all raids!

Originally published May 22, 2024; updated June 5, 2024

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: