World of Warcraft: Game Systems Panel

November 7th by Blizzard Entertainment

On the Main Stage at BlizzCon 2015, the World of Warcraft Development Team just completed their Game Systems panel. Lead Quest Designer Craig Amai, Senior Game Designer Jonathan LeCraft, Lead Class Designer Kris Zierhut, Senior Game Designer Paul Kubit, and Lead Game Designer Matt Goss took time to go into more detail about at the new class, items, class design, professions changes, and itemization coming in World of Warcraft: Legion. 

Artifact Facts

Among the many Artifacts coming in Legion, the Affliction Warlock scythe Deadwind Harvester demonstrates how acquiring your artifact weapon will play out. Artifacts will accumulate Artifact Power and have a tree full of Artifact Traits that you can unlock with that resource.  Their traits will have multiple ranks, and progression will continue beyond level 110. A new item type called Relics will also come into play. Relics will be slotted into your Artifacts to increase its item level and give you bonus ranks in various traits. Artifacts also come in many models (and various colors) for you to unlock, lending an enormous amount of variety to the system.

A Classy Place

Class Halls (aka Order Halls) are the place to be in Legion, and from among the twelve locations under development, we delved into the Dreamgrove, the Class Hall for Druids. For all classes, Class Halls are where you’ll empower your Artifacts, unlocking new traits and changing your weapons' appearances. You’ll see your Class Champions there and interact with them unfolding their backstories over time. You'll pick up quests within the halls, and also find a scouting map that informs you about content opportunities elsewhere in the Broken Isles. You'll have a variety of bonus features in you hall that vary from class to class. You'll also have a special method traveling to your class hall quickly, and then returning back to the location you came from directly.

Demon Hunter Details

Considering the variety of character customization available to this new class, many will want to explore a new side of themselves by creating a new Demon Hunter. The DPS spec Havoc Demon Hunter will use the new resource Fury to do damage, while the Vengeance Demon Hunter is a tank and demon inquisitor, using protective spells and inflicting pain to achieve his goals. Through and through, the incredible mobility of the class is a highlight, and unique skills such as Spectral Sight (which allows the Demon Hunter to see enemies through solid barriers) will add depth to the gameplay.

Specs A’plenty

There are many new class changes in Legion, so the development team began the process of updating every spec with the question, “What makes a strong class fantasy?” In Legion, we have a goal of differentiating class specialties (specs) so that Death Knights, or Fury Warriors, or Arcane Mages are distinct from others of their class. Specs such as Survival Hunters, Discipline Priests, and Subtlety Rogues aren’t as different from other class specs today as we’d like them to be, so we wanted to work on making sure they were differentiated more. This also meant improving the immersiveness of the spec such as for Shadow Priest, Demonology Warlock, and Guardian Druid and empowering specs with aspects that didn’t feel powerful such as for Arcane Mages, Fury Warriors, and for Death Knights.. The major talent revision coming in Legion will be focused on new talents that are more spec-specific and provide the player with choices that matter more to them.

Profession Procession

Professions are also getting an overhaul in Legion, from recipe acquisition to recipe ranks to the introduction of Obliterum, a new demonic ash that you’ll use to enhance your items. In Legion, you’ll craft at your own pace and crafted gear will be special because it will often have on-use or on-equip bonuses that cannot be found on gear dropped anywhere else in the game. More changes will also be coming to secondary professions such as Archaeology, Cooking, and Fishing.

Don’t Forget Your Items

Meaningful rare world drops are coming back to World of Warcraft with Legion, and they’re intended to be both relevant and unique. How would  you like an expansion with new Legendary items? How would you like to see a completely overhauled Transmogrification system? That’s right -- a big, new Wardrobe is coming to World of Warcraft, and this is where you’ll store the look of every item you obtain (or have ever obtained). You’re going to be able to save outfits, save different looks per class specialization, and save “hidden” slots which will include shouldersWhat’s more, three new transmoggable slots are being added to the game, including tabards!

If you missed seeing the panel live, you can watch it in its entirety in HD via the BlizzCon Virtual Ticket. Head over to our Virtual Ticket page to get started, and then check out everything BlizzCon has to offer.

What are you most looking forward to in Legion?