We need to make Azerite Armor more available, for all types of players, through a method everyone can utilize. So we’re actually looking at Emissary rewards for that. The plan is to make Azerite Armor rewards from Emissary quests scale all the way up to 370 (based on your item level), which gives everyone a new, reliable source for appropriate gear. Further on, we’re looking at making some further improvements to the ways Emissaries reward gear, but getting more Azerite Armor in your hands is the higher priority for the immediate future.
When we add new Azerite Armor in what we’re calling “BfA Season 2” (starting with Siege of Zuldazar and its corresponding Mythic+ and PvP seasons), we’re going to add another outer ring to those pieces of gear that has two spec-specific trait options for each spec. This effectively means that your favorite traits will be available on a lot more items, while also opening up a lot more options across the scope of all of your Azerite pieces (and thus, we hope, create more interesting decisions).
We’re also going to continue to work on the individual traits themselves. We’ve done some basic tuning so far, but we’re taking the lessons we’ve learned from these first iterations forward, and Tides of Vengeance will bring new traits into the pool that reflect that. Our goal is to make the more generic traits be decent middle-of-the-road options for when you want to use a single piece for multiple situations or specs, but make sure the spec-specific options (which are generally the more interesting traits) win out in their respective environments.The first change is interesting. I had assumed that raiding was giving out enough Azerite pieces, but apparently it isn't. So Azerite gear is getting tied to Emissaries, and getting given out to every one. The downside of using Emissaries, though, is that you can't target specific pieces.
The second change makes it more likely that you'll get your "best" trait, as each piece will have 3 different specialisation traits in total. Though I foresee a lot of complaining from the people who have unlocked only one outer ring.
The final change is a good one as well. I like the general traits for leveling, because you can use one set of Azerite armor and swap specs. But it is kind of a letdown to use a general trait on your spec-specific Azerite gear.
I do wonder how this will interact with the Uldir-specific traits like Archive of the Titans, which enable the stacking Uldir buff. Will the next raid tier not have this catch up mechanism?