World of Warcraft: Legion [official site] won’t launch until August 30th but the demonic hordes are already making their move upon Azeroth. The traditional WoW pre-expansion patch is now live, implementing a fair chunk of the expansion’s big changes. Lots of classes are reworked, draw distances are increased, the transmogrification system is massively improved so you don’t need to stash loads of old items, equalised stats in PvP means you don’t need flash gear, and plenty more is changed.
This blog post gives an overview of the patch notes but do dive down for more info on things like reworked classes.
Many classes are having a talent tree or two revamped, see, to give them more distinct identities. Let’s take a look at my old class, the Rogue (shut up, okay). Assassination is now the only spec with poisons and bleeds, Subtlety goes even harder on stealth attacks, and Combat is… not there. The Combat tree is rebuilt as the Outlaw, more focused on scrapping with a sword and keeping a cheeky pistol at hand. Each tree is more like itself.
“As with Hunters, the three Rogue specializations have long suffered from a lack of distinct identity,” Blizzard explained. “What truly sets an Assassination Rogue apart from Subtlety? And just what is a ‘Combat’ Rogue anyway? Aren’t all three pretty focused on the art of combat? With that in mind, we’re making some bold changes that take each spec in a much more pronounced direction.”
And so it goes for other classes.
As for transmogrification (making items look like other items while keeping their own stats), they’re now unified by ‘Appearances’ in the Collections tab. The appearances of soulbound weapons and armours your characters collect will be unlocked across your whole account, with no more need to hang onto them. I also like Blizzard adding the option for transmog looks to change automatically as you change class specialisation.
Oh, and demons will starting raining from the skies in mid-August.
Are you planning to return to WoW with Legion, by the way? I say that as if you don’t currently play it but, well, the number of people currently playing is far smaller than those who might return. Numbers, man.
Look, I’ll not get into all this as it’s a big patch. Read the blog post and watch this video for the highlights: