Sunday, June 19, 2016

Low Level Notes from the PTR

I took a poke around the public test realm this weekend. Trying to avoid spoilers, I didn't do anything major. I made a few low-level characters and took them through the first few levels. Here are some observations:

  • Classes now start with a specialization. Paladins start as Retribution, Druids start as Feral (and start the game in Cat form, no less), Hunters start as Beastmaster, etc. I think the other specializations unlock at level 10. Overall, I think this is a good idea. There's no forgetting to specialize, and no "generic" abilities which are only used in first 10 levels. You also don't get two abilities that don't synergize, because they are meant for different specializations.
  • Judgment has a new animation. You throw a golden hammer at the enemy, and the hammer returns to you. It also sometimes chains to a nearby enemy, but I can't tell if that's intentional or a bug.
  • I think the Hammer of Justice animation changed. A giant hammer drops from the sky on the enemy's head. I don't really like it. I miss the simplicity of the current spinning rising uppercut animation.
  • The default nameplates have changed. They're cleaner, and enemy health is represented as a thin red line, instead of a fatter bar. There's also small health/mana/resource bars in the center of your screen under your character. These bars only appear in combat, and fade out otherwise. I really like these new nameplates.
  • The quest helper minimap graphic has changed. It's now this transparent outline instead of a shaded area.
  • There's a nice animated flair on the XP bar when you get a large amount of XP. It's snazzy.
  • The initial class quests that send you to your trainer are gone. I guess it makes sense since the abilities have all changed. Still, it makes me a little sad. I liked that little nod to your class right at the start, with the notes expounding the philosophy of the class.
  • Armor starts as the max armor type. Paladins get plate, hunters get mail, etc. The item still looks the same as previous, like mail or leather. This is a bit weird with mail armor that looks like leather (those night elf shorts you always get), but plate that looks like mail looks decent enough.
  • Otherwise quests appear to be all the same as live. For low levels, it looks like only mechanics changes.
I didn't poke around a great deal, but these are some smaller impressions of what you can expect in Legion at low levels.


  1. Any news on the mob TTL front? It's still one-shot land?

    1. I only played from level 1 to 5 or so. At level 1, you could one-shot with a Judgment crit, but otherwise it was Judgment + 2 auto-attacks. At level 3 it was Judgement + 2 Crusader Strikes for most mobs. I think the level 5 boss took 2x Judgments and 3x CS.

      So far I think it is pretty reasonable. I got to use all my abilities in each combat.

  2. At this point, they should just rename the armor classes Heavy, Medium, and Light. They rarely reflect the material anymore.

    1. I think it's only these initial quest items. They probably just made changes in the database, and mass-updated them all to the new type.

  3. What do you think about the hammer of wrath being removed? I for one hate it. It is a very iconic pally ability.

    1. My feelings are mixed. You're right, it's iconic and a great ability. But removing it also adds a weakness to paladins, and it's important for classes to have weaknesses.

      I might end up making a post about it.