A month of Legion

Are you sick of me talking about Legion all the time? I’ll be honest I’m a little tired of writing about it, but I’m nowhere near sick of playing it. Now that we’re a full month in I wanted to do a little analysis of what’s working and what’s not in this expansion.

Scaling tech: I was super nervous about how this would work but the reality of it is that it’s seamless. It worked great for leveling and it meant I could run dungeons with friends and not care about everyone’s level at all.

World Quests: I love pretty much everything about this system. They’re varied and usually quick, you can do as few as 4 a day and still get your emissary quest done for rep and loot, and the rewards for individual quests feel more meaningful than the tiny gold and rep you’d normally get from dailies. The fact that you can have up to 3 stored emissary quests also helps you get things accomplished on your own schedule without feeling like you’re missing anything important.

Titanforged Gear: Related to world quests, the fact that any piece of gear can potentially upgrade makes lots of tasks feel more worthwhile. Sure, that quest reward gear might not be that great, but I’ll do almost any quest that rewards gear because there’s that chance it could titanforge and be amazing. I got a sweet pair of i865 boots this way the other day and I’m still excited about it.

Suramar: Suramar as a zone is huge, full of nooks and crannies that I still feel like I haven’t completely explored. Doing all the quests there, I kept finding subzones with long quest lines and tons more content than I expected. On top of that you have Suramar City and the nightfallen. Multiple times questing in the city I got the feeling that I was not even playing WoW anymore, and I mean that in the best possible way. It felt like a completely different, story driven RPG and I loved it.

Mixed feelings:
Legendaries: Random legendaries that change the way you play your class like in Diablo 3 seem pretty neat. The fact that they are a random drop is less neat. For something this powerful, I prefer a way to work towards it. At least they put in a bit of RNG protection behind the scenes. Only a couple of my friends have gotten one yet. I’m sure I’ll get one eventually, but I’m mentally preparing myself for inevitably getting one that is the least helpful for my spec and being sad about it.

Artifact Weapons: Getting artifact traits has been pretty neat, and does a decent job of replacing the fun of getting talents as you level up. The way the gains speed up with artifact knowledge seems to scale pretty well. It still feels a bit bad when you either make a new character and have a long road to catch up, or if you’re trying to split points between multiple specs.

Dungeon Difficulty: I’m mixed on this because while I enjoy the more difficult settings, the system feels a bit cumbersome. Normal, heroic, mythic, and mythic+ feels like a lot of options, but then you realize that the game really wants you to play on mythic or m+. Mythic difficulty has been the most fun by far, and some of the dungeons (I’m looking at you, Darkheart Thicket) feel incomplete or boring at lower settings. Many quests and dungeon meta achievements require mythic difficulty, yet there’s no random group finder for that setting. I really wish they had either allowed quest completion in heroic, or added mythic to LFD. That said, mythic and M+ have been really fun, and I’m hoping I can keep a coherent 5-person group together long enough to progress.

Not so Great:
Professions: Blizz did their usual swing here. Profs went from almost completely meaningless in WoD to complicated quest-locked monstrosities in Legion. For example I need to run around to 6 different old world zones and run a bunch of different dungeons to unlock some things on my jewelcrafter, and the gear I’ll be able to craft after this will still be ilvl 815 and fairly useless.

Meaningless Faction Bullshit: There’s really two items in this category. First is the stupidity of the faction story in Stormheim. It is bad and it should feel bad. I love my chosen faction and will wear my Horde t-shirt with pride like any other nerd but the faction conflict in the story feels incredibly weak and forced. I am so over it. The other item is tagging. Making normal mobs be multi-tag is amazing, but faction locking them is annoying. This doesn’t enhance my faction pride or desire to pvp, it just makes me angry at the designer who thought this was a good idea.

Odd Content Gating: This includes mythic-only dungeons, locking story behind mythics and out of the reach of LFR, and the fact that there’s no LFD for mythics. I am lucky I have a group of friends playing right now but lots of people don’t. Why is so much of the story gated behind more difficult content with no easy grouping option? Related- this contributes to my feeling that LFR is almost entirely useless. You can get better gear from world quests, and it doesn’t work to progress story. Why on earth would anyone go in more than once just to see the fights?

Overall I’m still in love with this expansion a month in. I would currently rank it as my 2nd favorite, after WotLK, and if it keeps going well it might even move up to first place. How do you feel about Legion after the first month?

A month of Legion

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