2014 has been with us for a short period now but long enough to start expecting Warlords of Draenor news and update. Now this isn’t anything huge but I am happy to just be hearing Blizzard talk about WoD as it means we will see the WoD Iron ball rolling in the near future! So Blizzard recently released a “Warlords of Draenor – Scouting Report” which doesn’t contain any crazy info but I feel the info that they released is very interesting and is definitely sure to spark a discussion! Let’s take a look at the post and break down each segment.

Preparing for Battle

At BlizzCon, we laid out our plans to send you into battle against some of the biggest and baddest enemies in Warcraft history. While the Iron Horde gears up for war on Draenor, back here on earth we’re making preparations for the expansion’s upcoming closed beta test. If you’d like to be considered, now’s a great time to make sure you’re opted in to Warcraft betas and that the hardware specs in your Beta Profile are up to date. (Full instructions can be found here.)

So the first section of the post doesn’t really tell us anything in particular. Reminding us to be opted in for the Warcraft betas if you are interested in testing the beta of WoD (Which if you haven’t done already get clicking the link and get on it!) but unfortunately it doesn’t give us a hint as to when to expect beta as we were told to opt in at Blizzcon, so for now we just assume Soon™. Let’s move to the next section!

Report from the Front Lines

From the outset, players will find themselves hurled into a chaotic conflict with the Iron Horde at a new Dark Portal on Draenor. The situation for Azeroth is grim, and the war effort needs heroes—from new recruits to retired champions to warriors still tending wounds earned at the Siege of Orgrimmar. To get everyone straight to the action, when you buy the expansion, it will come with a boost to level 90 for one character on your WoW account. We’re getting ready to test the functionality for that on the PTR, and we wanted to provide a quick update on how it will work with the upcoming expansion presales.

Warlords of Draenor will be available for pre-purchase digitally Soon™, and we’re once again planning to have standard digital and Digital Deluxe versions (along with a physical Collector’s Edition—more on that at a later date). This time, if you pre-purchase the Digital Deluxe edition you’ll get your exclusive World of Warcraft pet and mount right away, allowing you to bring a little bit of Draenor past into Azeroth present.

In addition, when you pre-purchase either digital version, we’re going to grant you your level-90 boost at the time of pre-purchase. That’s a little different from the plan we laid out at BlizzCon, but based on the feedback, it’s obvious that many of you would like the chance to get acquainted with a new class before heading into the expansion. This will also give more players the opportunity to experience the current end-game content and the events leading up to Garrosh’s exodus to Draenor.  Maybe you’ll get your Legendary cloak from Wrathion and level 90–100 Heirloom weapon in the process.

This is where things start to become interesting, so basically once you pre-purchase the game you will receive the instant level 90 we expected to get on WoD release along with them confirming the Digital and Physical Collectors Editions will contain a Mount and a Pet but we kind of expected that. In terms of the instant level 90 being given on the pre-purchase instead of the launch, I am fine with that, actually pretty happy with that as it allows people to get the character setup with gear, a guild if you plan on starting fresh on a new realm and experience the end of the expansion from a different class PoV! So decently interesting info from that section but it doesn’t end there!

Bolster the Ranks

We’ve also heard feedback from players that they’d be interested in boosting multiple characters to 90, including alts they play with friends on other factions and realms. We’ve been evaluating ways to make that possible without having players go through roundabout methods (such as purchasing multiple boxes and performing multiple character transfers), and in the near future we’ll be testing out a feature that gives you the option to purchase a character upgrade directly. We’ll have more information to share later—including details on our character-upgrade plans for Asian regions where players don’t buy expansion boxes—but you’ll start seeing pieces of the process soon on the PTR, so keep an eye out.

We’re looking forward to the closed beta test, and we’re excited we’re able to give players their character boost immediately upon pre-purchasing—hopefully that will help tide you over while you’re waiting for the epic battle for Draenor to begin. Stay tuned for more information on presales and our beta plans, and we hope you’ll join in and help us test this stuff out when it hits the PTR.

Onto the last section of the Report and this is the part I find to be most interesting. Here they talk about being able to boost more then one character to 90 as intended with the WoD expansion without us having to do awkward methods such as purchasing more than one WoD Expansion pack. The part that catches my eye is they mention testing out a feature that allows you to purchase a character upgrade directly, I’d imagine it would appear on the In Game Store and would be an item you can get that will instantly ding you to 90 and possibly contain some basic green questing gear.

Now I was ok with the ability to purchase an item that allows you to level faster as you still need to go through the content and we have had the ability to Recruit a Friend for the longest time which essentially does the same thing. I feel leveling a toon is a crucial part of learning to play the character before you hit the endgame content. I know this contradicts what I said earlier about being ok with the instant 90 with WoD but that is only one character while having the option to purchase a 90 when ever you feel like it means we will see the FOTM (Flavor of the month) classes appear in force as a lot of people want the FOTM class but can never actually be bothered to level and now they don’t need to! Along with this I feel the general skill level of players will be affected, as I mentioned before leveling gives you a general idea of how the class/spec works and what buttons to press but with instant 90’s everywhere it takes away some of that experience.

Although personally I like the having the choose to purchase an instant 90 as it allows me to  get a character on a friends server much easier as leveling is the biggest thing holding me back from playing something new, somewhere new. I just have concerns for the effect of this overall, will players become to lazy? If they start to get a large chunk of the games content instantly when ever they want, will that cause people to complain about end game mandatory things such as farming valor or general character progression? Will people begin wanting easy options for a lot more of the content? I sure hope not, it won’t make the game pay 2 win but I feel it will affect the general mindset of the current and future generation of WoW Players.

The greatest question is do we really need instant level 90’s as a purchasable option? Personally I feel the answer is “No”, it might not be fun to level a new character but that is a part of the game and it can be made a lot easier with things like RaF, 300% Experience Elixir etc but let me know what you think about all of this!


Blue Post Source – http://us.battle.net/wow/en/blog/12426481/warlords-of-draenor%E2%84%A2-scouting-report-1-16-2014