When we talk about MMOs very often we make the mistake of judging them too quickly, both positively and negatively, but especially when we talk about a giant like World of Warcraft it is easy to get carried away by enthusiasm and memories of a joyful past. It is for this reason that we have taken some time to thoroughly test the new expansion. And after the months spent in beta, the enthusiasm has practically remained the initial one despite the fact that Legion is not without flaws.
Among the various objectives of Blizzard for this expansion there was certainly to stop the bleeding of players who were slowly abandoning the title after the not too beloved Warlords of Dreanor, which started optimally and then soon ended up buried by tons of dust and boredom. And according to what was declared during the last PAX West, it seems that the company has been a success with numbers very similar to those of the times of Cataclysm.
It must be said that this time Blizzard knew which buttons to touch, perhaps thanks to the numerous feedback received from the community during the WoD period, and managed to awaken the interest of fans by churning out an expansion that made us exclaim “damn, really well done! “.
Well done because the hours spent between the beta realms and then later on the official ones have pleasantly slipped away, well done because such a clean and practically smooth launch has not been seen since time immemorial, but above all well done because finally the story that Blizzard us he wanted to tell not only he brought us back to memory events of the past but he knew how to involve us as it had not happened with Pandaria or WoD.
With Legion we will discover many details about Illidan’s past.
But well done also for the new class introduced, the Demon Hunter, which will not only allow anyone with at least one level 70 character to start at level 98 and immediately enjoy the new content, but which will allow us to discover some details in more on the Illidari.
The first steps we take in the new expansion will lead us to Dalaran under attack from a more determined Burning Legion than ever, and which for the third time in Warcraft history will make its appearance on Azeroth. Thanks to a powerful spell, Archmage Khagdar, aided by other members of the Kirin Tor, will be able to steal the flying citadel from attacks by moving it into the skies of Broken Isle.
From this moment on we will be able to freely explore the new region and its lands, discover its secrets and of course try to stop the Legion. The story will be extremely compelling and full of twists, we will meet many well-known names linked to the past of Warcraft, and tragic losses will jeopardize the agreements between the Alliance and the Horde in a mix of events capable of keeping us glued to the screen eager to know how and what could happen again.
This time Blizzard has really given its best by superbly characterizing each area with amazing landscapes that we will visit accompanied by numerous missions apparently unrelated to each other but which will instead weigh on the main plot. Unlike what happened with past expansions, where the plot also followed the progressive exploration of the zones, for Legion things will work a little differently. In fact, we will choose in which order to visit the various areas simply by sending an exploratory expedition thanks to the map in the Class Hall, and once the new area is reached the difficulty will be adjusted to the level of our character.
Legion will give us the opportunity to take on the role of a Demon Hunter, becoming all little Illidan!
Class Halls are the revised and corrected version of Warlords of Draenor’s Garrisons but without the hassle of running craft shops or other amenities. We will have the only similarities in the exploration map and in the assignments for the followers, significantly reduced compared to the past but with a greater impact on the progression of our class and artifacts.
The Class Halls will be crucial points for the growth of the character and for this reason Blizzard wanted to develop the WoW Legion Companion App, available for both iOS and Android smartphones, thanks to which we will be able to remotely manage the vast majority of our followers’ activities. send them on missions, research upgrades, and monitor the status of World Quests to plan which ones to play once online.
The Class Hall, or Enclave for those who prefer localization in Italian, will not only provide us with some bonuses and useful items such as scrolls to increase the amount of points that can be earned from artifact fragments that we will collect during our adventures but will give us access also to missions to retrieve the specific weapons of each class.
For each of the thirty-six specializations available, a unique story has been created that will lead us to visit historical places of Warcraft and, as if that were not enough, many of the artifacts will be characteristic objects of the various classes. Just to give a couple of examples, the Retribution paladins will be able to wield the Ashbringer while the Enhancement shamans the Doomhammer that belonged to Thrall.
While this obviously excited us, on the other it aroused some perplexity because many of these particular weapons in the Warcraft universe have always belonged to leading figures or forefathers of the classes. The aforementioned Ashbringer belonged to the paladin Alexandros Mograine and seeing a myriad of copies of such a particular weapon, despite the possibility of customizing it, leaves in the end some doubts even if in terms of marketing it is a winning move.
Another detail that hasn’t entirely convinced us about the artifacts is their progression. As previously mentioned, each specialization will have its own dedicated weapon and this could prove to be a severe limitation for all those players used to switching from one specialization to another according to personal needs or guild requests.
Accumulating the necessary points to unlock the various skills of the artifact takes a long time and less “hardcore” players will risk being tied to a single choice or, alternatively, will have to settle and use a weapon of much lower power than the main one. Despite everything, however, the artifacts are truly amazing weapons and their development tree system is very reminiscent of that of the old talents of the characters.
Each point spent not only increases the power of a certain skill, whether it is passive or active, but also increases the damage of the weapon and its power in general. We will also be given the option to re-allocate spent points but it will be a really expensive choice that will require a lot of artifact points, so you need to carefully think about how to spend them.
Who among you has never dreamed of meeting Odyn?
Another detail that has not completely convinced us, and like us much of the community, is the restyling of the classes. If on the one hand the elimination of various skills, some of which are not particularly useful, has lightened the quickbars and, according to some, greatly simplified the roles, on the other hand it has made some specializations not exactly performing. The Death Knight Frost, for example, know what we are talking about, since they ended up at the bottom of the dps ranking.
The problem that at first was not much felt has turned into a growing discontent especially after the advent of the first of the new Legion raids, where many players have seen themselves “left at home” by their groups because they did not own the role. adequate. Balancing as we have learned over the years has never been Blizzard’s strength but in any case the Blizzard team is aware of the problem and is already working to restore lost dignity to the ‘marginalized’.
Unfortunately, rejuvenating a title that is twelve years old, really quite a lot for an MMO, is not an easy task and we remember this every time we analyze the graphics of WoW, with its relatively simple and light style, bordering on cartoonish that however succeeds. always to make us change our minds and that never as this time will make it a pleasure for the eyes to visit the areas of the new expansion.
The attention to detail in the various areas is really surprising and often during normal missions or World Quests (a new type of assignments that will be unlocked once the level cap is reached and which will replace the daily), we stopped to look at the panorama . From the peaks of Highmountain to the green woods of Val’sharah, getting lost in exploring the environments will be a truly interesting and unique experience, as well as visiting the new dungeons.
World Quests won’t always be trivial.
In addition to the remake of the famous Violet Hold prison, Legion introduces nine new dungeons each with different environments and characteristics of the areas where they are located. Many mechanics within them will be the classics to which Blizzard has accustomed us over the years but we can assure you, thanks to the many hours spent facing them, that there will certainly be surprises. Our honorable mention goes to the Halls of Valor, located in the lands of Stormheim, a dungeon that finds its setting in Norse mythology.
In it we will have to fight against the wolf Fenryr and cross a bridge of light that shouts loudly “Bifrost”, at the end of which we will find ourselves in the presence of Odyn. A perfect place for anyone who is a Viking at heart. Of the ten dungeons available, only eight can be tackled in the three known difficulties while the last two remaining, The Arcway and Court of the Stars, will only be available on Mythic difficulty. In addition, access to these last two instances will have to be gained through a series of missions and by increasing the reputation with the Nightfallen, the population of the enchanting Suramar fallen into the hands of the Burning Legion.
Like any self-respecting expansion, Legion does not come without Incursions and this is also another reason why we have delayed the publication of these lines. The first raid introduced by Warlords of Draenor was sloppy to say the least and with bosses that were anything but memorable while this is exactly the opposite. And if you too, during the mission in Val’sharah, have grown the desire to test that dude of Xavius, this will be the right place to do it because Blizzard, finally, has given us the possibility to access the Emerald Dream or at least the its corrupted version, the Emerald Nightmare.
In the history of Warcraft the Emerald Dream is an enchanted and peaceful place at the limit of the imagination, where spirits live in harmony in the midst of unspoiled nature, in short, a destination dreamed of by many fans of the series. The raid made up of seven bosses winds through a dark maze overflowing with corruption to culminate in the presence of a beefy Lord Xavius ready to attack us without many pleasantries.
The battles with the various bosses are interesting and complex at the same time. A well-knit and above all well-equipped group will not find many difficulties but even a small distraction (or a few strokes of lag) will be enough to turn the battle against us. Faced with the first six bosses, we will then be able to try to bring home the head of Lord Xavius thanks also to the unexpected help of Ysera, the green dragon who was supposed to protect the Emerald Dream and who will prevent players from falling victim to the same corruption that grips the whole dream.
Summing up, Legion is a fun expansion, well structured and with a lot of material to dissect. The new level cap at 110 will allow us to become familiar with the changes made to the classes in complete tranquility and if we want we can have fun with the Demon Hunter, thanks to which we can visit the Mar’dum, the world where the titan Sargeras imprisoned the demons before his fall .
Legion brings with it a mix of story and content that will keep you busy for quite some time, and our hope is that Blizzard has learned from the mistakes made with Warlords of Draenor and that the good work done with Legion is not undermined. But for the moment we can only renew our “well done” to the boys of Irvine: see you on Azeroth!