Here at Now Loading, we're pretty big Blizzard fans. But some of us, like you, haven't graced Azeroth with our presence in a while. Thankfully, World of Warcraft's new Legion expansion is coming out August 30th, just over a month from now, and last week's maintenance launched the ceremonial pre-patch.
Patch 7.0 and Legion itself are exciting for long-time players, but they may arguably be more exciting for players who have been away from the game for several years, because they include some amazingly enticing updates that are totally worth checking out.
If you've been looking for any excuse to fall off the World of Warcraft wagon, we have seven great reasons below why you should return for Legion.
1. The Wardrobe turns everyone into a collector (and frees up your poor, space-starved bags).
Okay, hear me out on this one, because it's legitimately one of the features that's had players stupidly excited ever since it was announced at BlizzCon almost a year ago.
A little background: The transmogrification system was introduced several years back, and it allowed players to change their armor's appearance to a piece of armor that they owned. Transmog put an end to the "clown suit" era of WoW — no longer did players have to suffer through whatever look the best-in-slot gear offered them.
This was a bigger hit than anyone could have expected, and players' bags have filled and filled and filled over the years as more and more potential transmog pieces are collected. The Wardrobe has changed all that.
What the Wardrobe does is allow players to collect appearances from items they own. Once the appearance is collected, it goes in the player's Wardrobe — forever. This means players can farm every appearance from every item in the game and then use those appearances to mix and match different pieces to create the perfect (or hilariously hideous) outfit.
If that weren't enough, Blizzard added functionality so that gear earned from previously completed quests would automatically be added to the Wardrobe. There's no need to re-do every quest on a new character, and there's no worrying about missing out on special appearances from quests that have been removed.
Oh, and did I mention that the Wardrobe is account-wide? Yeah. It's amazing, it's addicting, and it's reason enough all by itself to come back to the game.
2. You not only get a free level-100 character boost, you can test and choose each class before using it!
Okay, so maybe you haven't played in a long time and are worried about catching up and doing a long grind before getting to play with your friends. Well, good news, everyone! Purchasing Legion means you get a free level-100 character boost to use on any class of your choice.
"That's not helpful if I don't know how it feels to play each class!" some of you are surely thinking. Well, guess what! Blizzard is adding in a "try before you buy" feature with Legion to help you get a feel for each class. This will allow you to not only ease your way into a character but also get a feel for how it plays. At the end of the tutorial, you can choose to use the level-100 boost on this character or decline and test out another class.
And in case you were worried, your trial character doesn't lose any progress if you decline the boost — it's simply locked until you've made your final decision!
3. Demon Hunters are being added as a playable class. Oh, and they brought Illidan back with them.
Hey, you. Yeah, you! The veteran player who's still angry the Burning Crusade didn't introduce Demon Hunters. Guess what? They're finally coming to WoW. And they. Are. Awesome.
Much like Wrath of the Lich King's Death Knights, Demon Hunters start at a higher level — specifically, 98 — and get their very own starting zone. Without spoiling much, this starting zone begins in the past and helps bridge the gap between Burning Crusade and Legion. Plus, it sets the stage for Illidan's return/ It's an amazing experience all on its own, and I haven't even begun to talk about the crux of the class: playstyle.
Demon Hunters have one tank spec and one damage spec, and both are a blast to play. The class is incredibly mobile and the mix of dual-wielding glaives plus demonically infused abilities gives Demon Hunters a unique flavor that you can't help but love.
4. The game now has individual stories for each spec.
It's possible I've buried the lede a bit here, but if any of you remember class-specific quests (Benediction for Priests, Rhok'delar for Hunters, green fire for Warlocks), then oh man, is this one going to sell you on Legion.
See, Blizzard is adding in these things called Artifact weapons at the beginning of the expansion. Each and every spec in the game has a corresponding Artifact, and acquiring that Artifact requires doing a quest chain that is unique to your spec — that means there are 36 entirely unique quest chains that not only test your knowledge of your spec, but also expand the game's lore in ways never seen before.
Those class quests I mentioned earlier? Think of the Artifact chains like those, except more in-depth and for everyone. Even better, the Artifacts can be powered up throughout the expansion, which means even more unique questing (and fancy new appearances to add to your Wardrobe).
Blizzard has seriously outdone itself on this one!
5. Class Order Halls are exclusive locations to hang out with all of your same-class friends.
As if Artifact weapons weren't enough, Blizzard decided to take things one step further and add a central hub to the game — actually, make that 12 hubs.
At the end of your initial Artifact chain, you'll be taken to your class hall, which is essentially a private location for everyone of your class to hang out. No other class can come to your hall, and the hall itself serves as a launching point for many of the expansion's content. It's a great place to retire to at the end of a day, and perfect for seeing other players of your class and comparing gear, talents, and more.
6. You can quest from 100 to 110 in whichever order you please — everything scales to you.
Each expansion prior to Legion has had a relatively linear progression through the new continent. In some cases, there were two separate zones for the first level or two but after that, players were pretty much all close to the same level if they were in the same zone.
Not anymore! Thanks to new scaling tech, Blizz has made it so players have freedom of choice in where they want to level. There are four zones to choose from, as well as an initial max-level zone which will feature level-110 mobs.
And if you're worried about gear or questing with different-level friends at all, don't be. Gear from both drops and quests will scale to your level, and enemies that share the screen with you and someone else will appear level appropriate for each other you.
For example, let's say you're level 104 and see a level-105 mob. A level 108 character who walks by will see the same mob as level 109. If you kill it together, you might get the same piece of gear, except yours will be item level 729 and the other player's will be item level 769. Keeping in mind the fact that zones scale to your character level (as opposed to item level), this makes it so you can still return to the zones later in the expansion and plow through enemies. It's a great quality of life change that, frankly, many are hoping gets expanded to the rest of the game.
7. The soundtrack. Oh my god, the soundtrack.
Look, if none of the above reasons piqued your curiosity, just give this small sampling of the Legion soundtrack a listen:
...Does anyone else have chills?
And this is all just the start. Blizzard has a lot more planned for Legion and it's shaping up to be one amazing expansion. Plus, if you've never experienced what it's like to have an online family, the release of a new expansion is the perfect time for it! (And you may just run into someone famous in Azeroth!)
So whaddaya say? I'll see you on the Broken Shore!