Datamining and alpha testing has started, and Wowhead is bursting with all possible posts. I will skip each and every story spoiler until release, yet I’ve been admiring the new models, and they look awesome! Just watch them, they’re so great.
So far my favorite Covenant (by visuals) is surprisingly Maldraxxus. I’ve never expected that, and yet they are so charming and engaging. But of course we will need to travel there, see all the quests, deal with natives to make our decision.
There is already a strongest criticism considering the initiate Covenant idea. Thing is, it is impossible to achieve balance between their different perks/talents, and it is very likely that 80% players will pick the Covenant with the one perk that provides most benefits – by guide, advice or otherwise, leaving the others unattended.
Moreover, swapping Covenants is nigh impossible: they have their own campaign, reputation and a life-long work to do, so it doesn’t happen at a fingersnap, and the price of mistake is very high. Also Blizzard may tweak perks in power output as they receive feedback, and suddenly your great choice becomes shit.
Two solutions have been proposed here. One, attunement to Covenant grants only lore and cosmetic rewards. Perks and talents are not a subject of attunement. Two, players acquire ALL perks for all Covenants into one interface as they progress through the leveling stories – and they can pick one out of them which they like most. I wonder if Blizzard listens, but both options seem great.
As for me, I’ll be in that 20% (or 5%?) that totally ignore perk and talent aspect. I have max-leveled toons for every Covenant and armor type, and I will assign them according to the character’s philosophy – as druid will dwell amongst night fae in Ardenweald, and rogue would very likely walk with vampires of Venthyr. Whatever bonuses they get – it makes them more powerful, not less, and I’ll be thankful for that.
BfA and Visions of N’Zoth rolls on though as we talk. Yesterday was a day of my triumph:
It’s the final weapon model from Ny’alotha LFR, and it effectively finalizes any obligatory raiding in the current expansion. I may have a farewell tour for every raid just for fun sakes, but my job here is done!
I’ve upgraded cloak to level 15:
Horrific Visions have become quite casual. I’m doing a 5-goal run in a very relaxed way, and if I’m concentrated enough, I can do it without using a single orb now. My ultimate goal is maximizing the mementos income to complete titan research, so I clear them in full, with every small mob in a corner and finding all chests.
Now that it’s a grind, it’s become not inspiring enough, yet I had my thrill in the end of all. My maximum per one sit is doing two runs, so I have no shortage of vessels and attempts.
I need about 11k rep for both Rajani and Uldum Accord, and I’m hating them. Assaults by the end of 3 months have grown very stale and uninspiring (I’ve seen all they could offer), there are no achievements to hunt except for Mechagon-style grinds (no way I’m doing them), and there are no rewards at Exalted to crave for except for a couple of tabards. So even this hour per week is a chore.
Oh, and all the rep/assault/HV routine is done only on my main and my main alone. Alts don’t need that, and they actually deleted their HV vessels straight into the trash – they could live and kill N’Zoth with cloak level 1-4 for all I care.
This all sounds pessimistic, but it’s actually not a sentence to the patch. I consider Ny’alotha the best and the most dangerous manifestation of the Old Gods in Azeroth so far – even if Blizzard clearly transfered open world developer resources to Shadowlands by 8.3. What happens now is finalizing my goals and preparing for the next patch. And a lot of transmog farming :)
Actually 95% of my playtime is now spent in old raids. I tend to complete about 2 full sets every day, and I’m on fire! Now excuse me, but I’m off to my rogue’s Outland raid tour…
P.S. Crucible of Flame azerite essence is your best perk to complete Valithria encounter in Icecrown if your class can’t heal ;)