With the launch of WoW: Shadowlands just around the corner, in this video David Caballero, editor-in-chief of Gamereactor Spain, interviews Patrick Dawson, Production Manager, and Sarah Verrall, Senior Level Designer, about the many new features of the MMORPG eternal. Here is the full transcript of the conversation.
★ Gamereactor: Today we will talk about one of the most important launches of the Christmas campaign for PC that is already around the corner, and I am referring to Shadowlands, obviously, the new Blizzard expansion for World of Warcraft that comes to the market on November 24, after having suffered a slight delay. Many thanks to both Patrick and Sara for being here today; our first question is for you, Patrick: Since you’ve had a little more time due to the delay, what can players expect? Have you been finishing it up or fixing some last minute bugs?
Patrick: Yeah sure, let’s talk about it. You already know that delaying a title is not an easy decision to make, we always like that players can enjoy new content as soon as possible. However, when we tested the final version and after having listened to the opinions of the community we realized that there were a few things that were not exactly as we wanted, and it is very important that we solve this issue, because in the case of the Pacts , for example, these are very important decisions and we want to make sure that the four options are well balanced and that they end up rewarding you and putting you fully into the game so that nobody will think that we have not made an effort to they. We have been working very hard in these Pacts and also in the Maw area so that it is dangerous but also attracts attention so that the players jump to conquer it. We have also been working hard on the new areas for the final version of the title, and I think that when you can enjoy the new stories from November 24, you will have no doubt that the wait will be worth it.
★ You mentioned a couple of things that we also wanted to ask you about, the Pacts and the feedback you have received from the community to date. With Patch 9.0 you completely redesigned the level system of the title, how did players take this change?
Patrick: The level system issue is something that we already had in mind, especially so that new players would not be overwhelmed by seeing that there are 120 levels added to the 16 years that the title has been on the market, so we wanted to give them For these players, a different and new experience, the End of Exile, where you learn the basic mechanics of World of Warcraft and, at the end of it, instead of having to play small pieces of all the expansions, we wanted them to only focus on one, in Battle for Azeroth, in which they will go up to level 50. Also, having fewer levels to play makes them more marked, and so they can also discover more about the classes and how they work in order to be prepared for launch from Shadowlands on the 24th.
★ And what can you tell us about the Pacts? Maybe Sarah can tell us more in depth about how they will work.
Sarah: The Pacts are basically a representation of the four cultures of the Shadowlands, so we have the Kyrian, who are the citizens of Bastion, then the Venthyr of Revendreth, the Pact of Maldraxxus and finally the Pact of Ardenweald. Each of them is part of the plot and you learn more about them as you visit their areas, you also discover what is cooked in these places and who are the members of each of the Pacts, and in the process you are shown the skills that you offer each of the four by choosing one to join. So, finally, you will have to choose which Pact you join, and it is a choice that we want players to think well, since it is something that you are a part of and that identifies your character, and this choice will be based on what that you learn about the area and its culture, the skills that you have been testing, the modifications of pieces of each Pact, also the plots for the maximum level players who want to know more about the Pacts or the individuals with whom you come across by the path that will help you improve your character. There are also very cool events in each of the four elections, for example, if you choose Ardenweald you can work at the Queen’s Conservatory and grow your own plants, they are little things of this style. On the other hand, if you choose the one in Venthyr, you can throw a party and immerse yourself in that gothic and romantic world so typical of vampires and invite other characters from this culture to the party. I think players are going to really enjoy the experience as it is very broad and allows them to make a lot of important decisions that are different from anyone else.
★ It seems something very broad, yes. Since you have talked about the plot and the universe of the saga, let’s talk a little about Sylvanas. Are we at the end of his narrative arc? Who are your allies?
Sarah: Sylvanas is a character that some people like more and others less, she has that gray tone that divides people’s opinions, and everyone is impatient to see what happens to her. What do you expect? Why have you made some decisions and not others? Who are your allies? Finding out what plot in Shadowlands and how their decisions influence the title is an adventure in which we are looking forward to embarking with the players, and the truth is that I am biting my nails to see what the reaction of the community will be when they discover everything.
★ If it turns bad it would be a terrible thing, go. Do you think we can see the Alliance being the bad guys in the story not long from now?
Patrick: Are you sure it gets bad? Or is it that it has been from the beginning? What motivates you or what are your reasons for doing what you do? It’s hard to answer all of this without knowing what’s on your mind, but we’ll find out in Shadowlands. What Sylvanas has done is bring us to this area that, although it is a sinister place that we do not know, also gives us the opportunity to explore it and meet other characters and their stories to discover what it is that it intends and who are the good guys and the bad. But things do not have to be so polarized, maybe there is a space in the middle of both ends, that gray hue that we talk about, and we may see more on this topic throughout history.
★ What kinds of objects will players be able to find while exploring this new world? Will there be new legendary items just like in the other expansions?
Sarah: Yes, of course. One of the most important novelties is Torghast, the new experience that maximum level players can enjoy as many times as they want alone or in a group of five, and, while they are inside the tower, they will find materials that will allow them to make their own own legendary items. This is where the mysterious figure of the Rune Engraver appears, to which if you bring pieces created by the players themselves, such as armor or jewelry, it gives you the option to choose the kind of legendary object you want to make through what it discovers about your shares in Torghast. I think the players will love this, because it will be something very personal to each one, plus they will be able to enjoy Torghast as they explore it from top to bottom and find these materials that will make the experience of each one different from each other. In the end, they will leave the area with items that will improve their gaming experience in raids, in pvp, etc.
★ You mentioned the raids, so I have to ask you about Nathria Castle. What kinds of challenges will players face in it?
Patrick: Nathria Castle is an incursion that, personally, makes me very excited, since I really like the Gothic world, its art and that atmosphere typical of castles, in addition to the fact that the history of the incursion will allow us to discover what Sire Denathrius intends and why we have to fight him and the minions that protect him. There are many more things about the raid that we have been testing in the Public Test Realm, such as destroyed areas or battles that start in one area and end in another, we have tried to add very new things so that players feel that when it comes to raiding These are very varied and different from each other. The truth is that we are hoping that everyone can see it once the season begins.
★ Many thanks to both of you for the interview, we can’t wait to enjoy Shadowlands from November 24th. All good!
Patrick & Sarah: anyway! Thanks to you too!