Datamining for WoW 9.2. is happening at full speed, with Wowhead publishing tons of new patch material everyday.
As always, I’m ignoring basically every piece of news – and for the sake of I love the game, not because I don’t. People are already designing power progression guides and discussing lore chapters. I’m staying out of all this stuff, because if I knew everything beforehand, what will be left upon release? I want to see the new raid mogs in game, I want to experience new lore and systems in game, so datamining to me is out of question.
Two things I’d like to know though beforehand. One, the catch-up anima mechanism in 9.2. Of course, Korthia remains to sustain a valid anima income to progress through my final goal of Fae sets, and yet today it’s a grind for grind sakes, the sole goal without collateral power progression, exploration and stuff, which makes me a bit reluctant to login. If, like always, the final patch will offer valid anima income during the new content – as they usually do to help the latecomers – then maybe I don’t have to do it now and rush to complete the anima farm?
Out of my 250k left I’ve collected about 40k, it was relatively quick, and yet I’d prefer other progress to happen simultaneously. For example, if story chapters will offer big chunks of anima like they did in 9.1. and the new world quests in new zone will boost the income from 9.1. even more, I’d better be calm and put the whole business safely on hold.
What I’m trying to say is I have all the tools for my final goal today, and yet not that excited to use them, because its not your usual multi-tasking, but a grind, period, however variable that grind may be. The only thing today that is motivating my logins is my fresh Fae Conservatory level 5 where I can plant seeds for a mount chance once in 3 days. Still, WoW remains to be a viable option for the evenings if I’m mad enough to logout from FFXIV – when with all its queues and login issues it would mean the end of the day for Square Enix’s child. Or if I simply miss my toons, I always have stuff to do.
But yes, it’s a lull in all its prime, nothing unusual is happening. Mark you, I will rush into 9.2. as fast as it launches. Mark you, I’m not a WoW-“refugee” or something, it’s the very same situation when I played Assassin’s Creed, Star Wars Fallen Order, Horizon Zero Dawn and other titles during previous WoW lulls – only this time it’s another MMO. You can enjoy many games when content is scarce in the ones you like.
The second thing that is worth discussing was a fresh non-crypted Sylvanas cinematic. Questionable visual solutions aside (I mean, why ranger general’s hair looks like… clay model?), the cinematic was not really surprising to me. Blizzard clearly planned this “redemption” arc, and in that vein, it develops kinda “logically”, no wonders here. Of course, the trope of “I was possessed and I was cheated” is done too bad, no question here – because, like with the Shadowlands major story arc, Jailer and such, it came out of the blue. It’s not a character development, it’s bland character rewriting and retconning, and it is done explicitly awful. No matter your attitude towards Sylvanas, good or bad, her loyalists and haters alike are in agreement that the writers destroyed one of the WoW’s key icons.
Personally, I’m observing the finale of Shadowlands lore with an interest of an entomologist, magnifying glass and all. I already made peace with that this expansion will not offer me anything good at all lorewise. The best they could do now is to waddle on crutches to the end, and proceed to – hopefully – better stories and writing of 10.0. The worst they could do in 9.2. is to try more twists and retcons, because shaking and tornadoes is what it needs least of all. So – yeah, walk through this redemption arc, and let’s leave it past us.
Although, if I’m candid and impartial to whatever Sylvanas development at this point, I’m genuinely interested in her story in terms of: how the writers will paint themselves out of the corner now? Let me remind you that she’s still alive, and to proceed to Shadowlands to find peace or whatever she yet has to die. Cold-blooded execution for her war crimes is of course the most logical idea by any human measure, but of course, it cannot be done within any game (executions are a baddie prerogative), and definitely not when she helps us now and has a piece of her soul back, expressing remorse – it’s like killing a good part of her soul too.
At the same time, it’s impossible to let her live – as Horde and Alliance both hate her, so she cannot live in peace on Azeroth. So I’m betting a heroic sacrifice in raid… whatever that maybe, in her prison rags and no weapon allowed, as no one in their sane mind would trust her with gear, blue eyes or not.
The case of Sylvanas and the expansion finale is weird for myself today: I’m very interested in 9.2. lore, yet not in the lore itself, but how the Danuser-led team of failures would cope with the current mess they have no one to blame for but themselves.