Saturday, May 18, 2019

WoW Classic Beta!

I got a WoW Classic Beta invite, and it is hilarious!  I remade my paladin, and here she is at level 10.

Classic Coriel in Goldshire
You can see the Seals, Judgement and (5 minute!) Blessing of Might on the bars. I had forgotten just how few buttons the classic paladin uses. (The question mark is a mouseover macro for Holy Light that seems to have a bug with the tooltip. I have reported the bug.)

It feels very much like the vanilla WoW that I remember. It's pretty slow, level 10 took me maybe four or so hours. Lots of running around. Combat is somewhat dangerous. I haven't died yet, but I've had to use bubble and run away four times. Twice from gnolls, and twice from murlocs. I'm wearing a mix of leather and mail, and I've even been wearing greys!

The major difference so far between Classic and retail is how much interaction there is with other people, and how the mechanics push you to interact. For example, tagging is absolute here, there are no shared tags at all. So I've ended up making impromptu groups for almost every named quest mob with the others who are waiting for the mob.

People seem to make liberal use of buffs, randomly buffing people nearby. Priests and Mages give me Stamina and Intellect, and I give them Blessing of Might. Though, this may just be the beta crowd. If you get in over your head (very easy to do!), and someone is nearby, they'll often help out.

I even traded some linen to someone who was leveling tailoring in exchange for two six-slot bags.

It's a very interesting experience to see exactly what you miss, and what you don't miss from retail, and what you wish was in retail.

So far, things I miss from retail:
  • AOE looting. I kill two murlocs and I always forget to loot the second one.
  • The bag clean up button. Apparently I use this constantly in retail. I open my bags, and reach for the button before I remember that it doesn't exist.
Things I don't miss from retail:
  • Quest markers and sparkles. The map and mini-map in Classic are very basic, and don't do very much. The mini-map doesn't even show new quests. After playing Classic, it's clear that I pay more attention to the map in retail rather than the actual world. In Classic, bringing up the map doesn't really add any information, so you pay more attention to the world. I am beginning to think that the balance between map and world in retail has tilted too far towards the map, and the map simply does too much.
Things I want from Classic back in retail:
  • The spinning uppercut animation for Hammer of Justice. It's so much better than the current animation. Every time I use Hammer of Justice in Classic, it annoys me that it got removed from retail.
Overall, WoW Classic has clearly got that vanilla feel, with all the advantages and disadvantages thereof. It's a unique opportunity to compare and contrast the two versions, rather than relying on nostalgia and unreliable memories.


  1. Hi, I'm glad you got in! Looking forward to your adventures in the old/new world. I didn't play until several years in, so the classic version will be like a brand new game for me.

    1. Yeah, it's certainly an experience, especially as it's recognizably WoW.

  2. People seem to make liberal use of buffs, randomly buffing people nearby.

    I remember that in my Wrath Era. That happened a lot, especially on the PvP server I started on. But after Cata dropped, it seemed that was on the decline, and midway through Cata I hardly saw it at all. It might have been the previous WoW players leaving the game for other pastures, and now they're coming back for Classic.

    1. I think it might just be the pace and difficuly. With a slow pace, random buffs are easy to do, and you know that the buff will make a difference to the other player.

  3. Have fun! :) Maybe you'll be surprised by just how good the old gameplay still is. Can't wait for the real thing to launch.

    If you keep playing the beta, I predict that your first death will occur at the hands of a Defias caster in Westfall!

    1. Nope, turns out it was coyotes in Westfall. I shouldn't have tried to fight two when my bubble on cooldown.