Tuesday, April 14, 2015

6.2: Blizzard Keeping Their Promise?

img: battle.net
This post contains information on the new raid tier, the bosses within, and some speculation on what it might signal in terms of remaining content for this expansion. If you're trying to avoid all spoilers, stop reading now. 

It's probably wayyyy too early to speculate about what's all going down in Patch 6.2 based on the tidbits we've seen in the last 24 hours, but that won't stop folks. So I'm going to recklessly toss my two copper into the pot.

In looking at the content we'll be getting in 6.2, I can't help but feel 6.3 isn't long off, and when it arrives, it'll signal the swan song of this expansion. Has the lofty yet ever-elusive promise to deliver shorter, faster expansions finally been realized?

We know we'll be getting Hellfire Citadel, a new raid tier with 13 bosses in Patch 6.2. Whether it's available right away or must be unlocked is yet to be seen. Some of the names of the bosses within should strike you. In the What the Fuck category, we have Mannoroth. In the Totally Saw That Coming category, we meet Archimonde as the tier's final boss.

Just as striking is the absence of a couple of previously anticipated foes, namely Gul'dan and Grommash. Some might speculate this indicates we'll see one more raid tier prior to the expansion's end, but I don't buy it. Instead, players will finish both Gul'dan's and Grommash's story arcs outside of the raid, possibly with the culmination of the legendary quest line. Yes, that's Blizzard reneging on a previous statement. /yawn. Been there, done that.

Speaking of finishing the legendary quest line---yeah! Players will be able to do that in 6.2, just like they were able to do in Patch 5.4 with the release of Siege of Orgrimmar in Mists of Pandaria. Let that sink in: we will be finishing the legendary quest chain come 6.2. Pair that with the bosses we'll be seeing (and not seeing) and it's too much for me to ignore. It signals that 6.2 contains the last significant content in this expansion's life cycle.

That means 6.3 will bring the systems changes we're used to seeing in the lead up to the next expansion, and this'll likely hit the PTR around Blizzcon in November, if not sooner. Whether Blizzard will hold off for an expansion announcement at the convention this year isn't clear, but I personally don't believe they'll be able (or want) to keep that info under wraps for that long given how quickly this expansion is moving.

I'd wager we'll be hearing about a different leveling system and---wait for it---flight in Draenor rather soon. So kudos, Blizzard. The promise you made on delivering short expansions in a more timely manner? You done good.

And gosh, does it feel weird.

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