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Is Shadowlands a Good Time to Get Back into WoW?
11/2/2021 em 15:18
"Is this a good time to get back into WoW?" asked
mvvraz on Reddit
. Many people seem to be asking this very same question and now seems to be a rather good time to answer it. The Shadowlands expansion brought with it a plethora of new systems, reworked systems, and gameplay opportunities but now we're in a bit of a content lull. Let's look at a small sample of the pros and cons:
Shadowlands is beautiful. The art department outdoes themselves every expansion. From the blue skies and open spaces of Bastion to the crumbling gothic structures of Revendreth to the stark, creepy, malignancy that is the Maw, Shadowlands is a gorgeous place to hang out. If you haven't played since the new character models were introduced, you are in for a real treat. Everyone looks better than ever.
The storytelling has never been stronger. Beyond gameplay, in-game cinematics, out-of-game cinematics, comics, short stories, and full length novels all contribute to the tale that is being told, the story that we get to live.
Shadowlands is fun and engaging. If you just want to escape for a little while, there is plenty to do and plenty to see. Maximum level content offers World Quests, Dungeons, Torghast, World Bosses, challenging zones, and distracting minigames within the game. There is a great deal of repeatable content.
The Group Finder adds unprecedented ease to getting involved in dungeons, raids, battlegrounds, or just world content.
Leveling has never been more fun or more cohesive. Chromie Time allows you to level within the content of the expansion of your choice, giving you a more satisfying and consistant experience. Warning: nostalgia levels can get high.
Alts are in a great place. Once you reach level 50 and unlock the Shadowlands content, with Threads of Fate you can choose whether to stick to the main storyline, or go off and explore, leveling through side quests, rare hunting and treasure finds.
Gearing at maximum level is easy out of the gate, but once you start looking for higher level gear for raiding or M+, it starts to get scarce. Gear drops from group content are quite lean. The weekly Great Vault allows you one item a week depending on what content you have completed during the week. Currently one of the best ways to gear for PvE content is by doing PvP. That seems just...wrong.
Some of the systems are obtuse and unbalanced. Lets take Soulbinds and Conduits, for example. It is hard to figure out what the purpose of these systems is. On the surface, yes, they let you add some customization to your character, but what is the intent? Is it supposed to be set and forget, or tailorable at will depending on the activity you are doing? Is it supposed to allow each spec of your class individuality, or is it designed to discourage spec switching? Some classes seem to have a variety of neat abilities, while others seem to just have abilities for the sake of having something to fill that slot. The system feels unfinished, and undirected. Legendaries are in a similar boat.
Professions are mostly in a very good place, but there are some spots where you might think crafting professions they should be equal in difficulty or convenience, and they are just not. From availability of crucial materials to the hoops that crafters need to jump through, Professions is another system lacking balance and polish. Professions could be well supported by things like World Quests, but the rewards are so stingy as to not even be worthwhile.
Pros/Cons, many of these are pretty subjective so your mileage may vary. Overall, I'd give Shadowlands a thumbs up. Yeah, it's a pretty good time to be playing.
Not all Cons are bad; BlizzConline is on the horizon. This is an odd BlizzCon because of the pandemic, but we still expect some major announcements and hopefully some of those will be quite exciting. If you are at all on the fence, definitely check it out - best of all, it's free!
BlizzConline February 19-20th
major content patch
of Shadowlands has not arrived yet. Might they announce this and what it will bring to the game? Speculation suggests perhaps flying, new raids, system improvements, and maybe even new zones as the storyline unfolds.
A few months ago,
players voted for a Wandering Ancient
to be the promised
. Will we see it? Will we get it? A big hint may be that the mount was
teased in the BlizzConline pre-show
. Many are looking forward to this and an announcement it at BlizzConline would be very welcome.
? Arthas has been a tragic figure hinted at and forshadowed throughout Shadowlands content. Might we learn more about about him, where he is, what he is, and how he's going to affect our lives. Again.
And last but not least, there is quite a bit of speculation that the much anticipated and much demanded
Classic Burning Crusade
may be announced. If you are a TBC aficionado, this may be the news you've been waiting for.
There is a
minor content patch
on the PTR
already. Usually these come after major patches, but with the world being all topsy-turvy and people working from home, who knows what might get turned on its head. This patch seems to be bring some quality of life improvements, including the return of
to upgrade M+ gear. This is an opportunity to add some of the polish this expansion deserves.
You may want to jump back in right now, or you may want to wait and see what BlizzConline brings. Either way, despite a strong design-by-committee feel, I don't think that getting back into the game will be a bad thing. Is this a good time to get back into WoW? Yep. It's not all sunny, but there are some good things and more good things on the horizon.
See you in Azeroth.
Here are a few guides you may want to hit up if you are planning on coming back to WoW:
Chromie Time The Threads of Fate Shadowlands: Covenants Overview
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