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Old 02-05-2018, 05:59 PM   #1
Emabulator
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World of WarCraft's New Leveling System And Allied Races Discussed By Blizzard


GameSpot has the story.

Quote:
World of Warcraft, one of the most enduringly successful and engaging MMOs in the history of the genre that it basically defined, is still truckin' along with a new expansion, Battle for Azeroth, coming this summer. GameSpot recently had the opportunity to speak with senior game designer Paul Kubit and producer Shani Edwards about two of the biggest new elements of the game and expansion: level-scaling and Allied Races.

Level-scaling in World of Warcraft was added in the recent 7.3.5 patch for all players. Previously limited to Legion's zones, this sweeping new feature is now available across most of the game. What it means is that the level of creatures and quests scale to the level of the player. In turn, this means you can party up and play together with friends, regardless of your level, all the while earning level-appropriate rewards for your accomplishments.

Kubit told GameSpot that players have responded really well so far to the new level-scaling system, adding that now is an opportune time to release it more widely with the new Allied races out now and the expansion due out soon. Fixed leveling was problematic and could lead to gameplay experiences that were not as fun and engaging as they could be, Kubit acknowledged.

Fixed leveling led to a more scripted experience because you could only play through level-appropriate zones instead of having free reign, Kubit said.

"In the past, what you had to do with fixed levelling was you had to go to one of three zones that was the correct level for you and then go to this one and this one. It was very scripted."

"It didn't offer a lot of choice."

But with level-scaling, you can now freely move through Azeroth and carve your own path instead of being forced down one particular path.
Read on.
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Old 02-05-2018, 07:03 PM   #2
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Been a while since I've played WoW. Such a huge game, and I had a blast for several years with it. I think everyone should try it for at least one expansion.
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Old 02-06-2018, 05:30 AM   #3
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I initially hated the idea of level-scaling but I admittedly hadn't looked into it too deeply and simply balked at the notion because it typically removes the point of leveling in the first place.

I get what they're going for, but this also kills the ability to go back to certain areas and collect stuff more or less hassle-free.
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Old 02-06-2018, 06:55 AM   #4
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Level scaling removes that sense of accomplishment, when you can go back to a previously-difficult area and stomp everything into mulch.

I thought Kingdoms of Amalur did it well, by making it a level range for each area, locking it in when you first visit. That made it easier to wander, but let you go back to an old area to clean up.

Fixed leveling introduces a sense of terror, like the first time I tried to run across the continent in Everquest, but ran into a giant that promptly destroyed me.
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Old 02-06-2018, 07:03 AM   #5
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I think they're definitely losing that 'I'm a badass now' feel to visiting old areas, as well as the ability to rapidly farm for item drops from particular areas/mobs/bosses.

I'm not sure I would like that, but I'd have to play it to find out and I'm not really interested in going back. No, no, no, no...it became work at the end, and I already have a job.
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Old 02-06-2018, 07:30 AM   #6
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Whatever it takes to keep this 14-year-old game afloat, I suppose.
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Old 02-06-2018, 07:40 AM   #7
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I really don't like level scaling. But what bothers me the most is the allied races. They are extremely boring, just recolors of existing races with some slight ability variations.

They have a plethora of cool races to choose from, like nagas, quillboars, tuskar etc. Who was asking for this?

Not that I've played this since cataclysm, but still.
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Old 02-06-2018, 07:49 AM   #8
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I really don't like level scaling. But what bothers me the most is the allied races. They are extremely boring, just recolors of existing races with some slight ability variations.

They have a plethora of cool races to choose from, like nagas, quillboars, tuskar etc. Who was asking for this?

Not that I've played this since cataclysm, but still.
People have been asking for sub races for a long time. But they didn't ask for this big deep story to each with weeks of grinding to unlock them. In true Blizzard fashion, you have to be careful what you ask for because they might just give you their version of it. The same thing happened when people asked for housing and got garrisons instead.
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Old 02-06-2018, 09:04 AM   #9
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They still have servers up on this one?
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Old 02-06-2018, 01:23 PM   #10
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I think what a lot of you are forgetting is that level scaling doesn't mean item scaling. You can out gear and absolutely destroy. So...meh.
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Old 02-06-2018, 01:35 PM   #11
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I think what a lot of you are forgetting is that level scaling doesn't mean item scaling. You can out gear and absolutely destroy. So...meh.
Pretty much. While leveling does factor in a good amount in WoW, item level is pretty important. There are still pugs that will kick you if you aren't at specific item level average.
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Old 02-06-2018, 04:45 PM   #12
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Level scaling removes that sense of accomplishment, when you can go back to a previously-difficult area and stomp everything into mulch.
Actually, there are level caps to the scaling. So the "vanilla" levels cap at level 60, so if you come back to those after you've finished leveling, you WILL still ROFLSTOMP them.
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Old 02-06-2018, 10:49 PM   #13
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I find it interesting how they just steal whatever is popular from the competition but add the Blizzard spin to it.
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Old 02-07-2018, 01:46 AM   #14
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The best and only good level scaling system was introduced in City of Heroes and is used to this day in Final Fantasy XIV. In COH, it only functioned in instances when you decided to ferry a friend along, allowing groups to play together no matter what. In FFXIV, the roulette system sends players to dungeons and trials at the maximum level for the instance, turning off higher level skills and abilities but adjusting a character power up a tick for their better gear. This has the added benefit of keeping old content still in use.

The WoW system described, where the world map is scaled to the local player, is the exact opposite of what I look for in an RPG. I want a character that grows in strength to make the rigors of the past seem minuscule as I strive to take on the next threat. To have the bears in a level 40 zone transformed into a challenge removes that feeling of accomplishment and wreaks heavily of desperation to provide less new content under the excuse you can still play in the world, even though you're just gonna sit in town and queue up anyway.
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Old 02-07-2018, 04:19 AM   #15
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To have the bears in a level 40 zone transformed into a challenge removes that feeling of accomplishment and wreaks heavily of desperation to provide less new content under the excuse you can still play in the world, even though you're just gonna sit in town and queue up anyway.
I had that same concern but from what I understand, that's not really how it works at all. Most of the old areas scale up to level 60 now instead of 20, 30, 40, etc. But the max level is 110. At 110 you're still going to crush anything in those scaled zones just by looking at it sideways. It's not perfect but it's also not going to really affect anyone who wants to go back to old zones and demolish things. When it was first released, word was that some of the raids from the previous two expansions were much harder but I believe that was a bug that was resolved.
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Old 02-07-2018, 12:56 PM   #16
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It had been a while since I had played and so when I'd advanced my main up a bit in the new expansion I went back and soloed all the previous one's dungeons at mythic level one day. The very next day the new patch hit with level scaling, entirely out of the blue for me. Thought that was funny.
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Old 02-08-2018, 04:07 AM   #17
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I've been travelling for a bit and haven't been able to log in since the patch but there is a cap to the level scaling; supposedly +20 levels of the original cap to the content. So vanilla would be level 60-80 (raids), BC 70 - 90 (raids), etc..

EDIT: I went on and on about how this is dumb but decided to compress it a bit.

I can't believe they stuck a knife into the backtracker playstyle. I know a lot of upset people right now.

Then they:
1) They nurfed heirloom gear
2) They didn't introduce any additional scaling heirloom gear slots (feet, wrists, gloves, belt) which makes leveling AGAIN even more painful for returning players and existing players
3) As someone who has played every zone in the game at least twice they give themselves way too much credit for their story
4) This shows they have too little understanding of how many players engage in their game; after an expansion has been out for a month or so open world questing is the filler waiting for the dungeon pops except when forced by Blizzard (ala Legion).
5) This goes counter to the evidence showing the best bang for the buck is to attract OLD players back to the game rather than new players. This system adds hurdles to old players.

I've been farming a few things in older content for example I am farming a mount in Draenor which is from a vendor who requires revered faction and I only have one character with that faction. He's sort of meh at killing. Requires 150,000 crystals and it takes a while for this guy to go through the quests so it's gunna piss me off if my time on the quests doubles or triples because those mobs are now 110 elites instead of 100 elites.

Nothing will be easy to revisit in the high end Cata, Panda, Draenor, or Legion. Achievements, mounts, toys, battle pets, and transmogs will be out of range because they'll all scale to 105 - 120. It is a bad move to invalidate this playstyle.

Having recently leveled two characters from 1 - 110 the old fashioned way I can say without a doubt the solution isn't to make it so people have to be exposed to the boring content for a longer amount of time, after all we know, with few exceptions, the story is mostly contained in the raids. If you want to see the evolution of the game you need to raid. Simple.

I saw invites people getting invites to the Friends and Family alpha for the expansion. Once I have time to settle in I may ping someone and see what their thoughts are.

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Old 02-08-2018, 05:06 AM   #18
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"Invalidate this playstyle" is what drove me away from the damn game in the first place (in addition to it having become like a freaking job rather than something fun). They nerfed my favorite aspects of the game, including crafting, a couple xpacs ago and I just decided the hell with it. They also gatekeep the ability to fly in certain zones behind an ass-rape of a workload to get to it, and I frankly haven't the time to be bothered to get what I really want, which is to FLY AROUND because it's FUN!
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Old 02-08-2018, 07:20 AM   #19
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I do like a lot of what Blizzard does but they definitely have a "No no! You're not enjoying it the right way!" attitude when it comes to WoW.
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