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My Afternoon in Conference Hall B.

Posted by Cob on October 28, 2005, 07:00 PM
I just got back from sitting in the front row of the developer discussion groups in Hall B, and boy is my ass sore. I missed lunch to play Starcraft Ghost (the expansion line was way too long, and it's just the blood elf newbie areas). I'll be hitting that tommorrow morning first thing I think, while everyone else sleeps in.

Sorry to keep everyone waiting on news, but there is literally only a 5min period between the discussion panels. I've got 22 pages of handwritten notes (not including the intro ceremony that I already went over) on everything I could write down. I'm really stoked for the expansion, and for Ahn'Quiraj in 1.7. I'm just gonna try and quickly touch over some key points and get back to the con (it closes at 10pm) so I'll be back in the Chez Goblin and try and organize the day a little better.

The 4pm discussion panel (Class Issues) seemed to be the most populated of all the sessions, and I assume people are the most interested in what is going to be going on with their classes. They discussed the origins of each class. "Paladins were intended to be the EASY CLASS TO PLAY." Yes, I have a photo of this. ;)

The future of class mechanics.
They are NOT adding a new class in the expansion. They want to finish the classes they have. They are working on hero classes, but they have no details for us at this point. They will NOT be in the expansion.

They are going to add 4 or 5 NEW spells for levels 50 to 60 for each class to fill the 'gap' at the upper levels. There will be MORE tiers in the talent tree, and we will be getting talent points for level 70.

This session was the most 'carnival' of them all, with people openly booing shamans and paladins when they were talking about them, and the Q&A session was generally wasted with the kind of gripes you can find on the forums. I.e., souls shard bags, soul shard farming, mages are too weak, guilds only want dwarf priests.

Paladins will be revamped in the next patch 1.9. They are specifically going to address issues where the paladin has to bless everybody.

Mages will get some sort of invisibility back, post lvl 60. It was removed because they were being used to easily bypass content in dungeons.

Lore
I really want to go over this, as this was my favorite section, but the next part of the con is starting up right now. They talked about the mistake that led to the 'two hakkars', and an indepth background to the Blood Elves, and where they are in the world. Why they are allied with the Horde. This section was mainly about the Outlands. In a nutshell, the citizens of Azeroth have turned back the burning legion from destroying their world not once but twice. Illidan has taken over the outlands (it is like a fragment of chunks hanging in the twisting nether) and made it into his fortress home. The five heroes in stormwind will be in the outlands KICKING ASS ALONGSIDE YOU.

The outlands are a dimensional nexus of dark portals that the orcs used to flee. Illidan sealed them, and they will be our gateway to other worlds overrun by the Burning Legion. So, for the first time in the warcraft history, we will be taking the fight directly to the burning legion.

They are going to be pushin the horde and alliance into more and more conflict. Specifically this will be in the 1.9 patch. There will be a HUGE scripted war that breaks loose when each server finishes the monumental tasks ahead of them to open the Scarab Wall.

So much more, but I gotta get back to the con. I'll be back after 10pm PST and get to work on another post. Hopefully there will still be some of the hotel bandwidth left... Both the Lore and Raid lectures were great stuff. I got pics of the design maps for a couple of dungeons. They joked that they'd be up on spoiler sites by 2pm. (Sorry guys, I'm a little late.)

Did I mention that the floating necropolis over Strat will be open????

Special thanks to my girlfriend Ceigie who is at home loading screenies into the gallery for me. I <3 you much! =)