Upcoming Azerite Armor Improvements

Battle for Azeroth Items and Classes
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Something else I didn't touch on - the broad scope and lack of targetability in the weekly cache is frustrating at best. Azerite still winds up being entirely random outside of raids, and there can be better design. I really, really suggest allowing a second piece to drop from the cache that does typical cache titanforging from your highest dungeon completed in time.

E.G. you complete a +10 King's Rest past the time limit, so you'll get a 370+15 piece of gear. But you also completed a +7 Siege of Boralus in time, so you'll also get a 355+15 piece of gear specific to Siege. And in cases for multiple same-level times, maybe you can broaden the scope to both or put an in-game option to choose.
In terms of 340+ Azerite gear we are currently pulling the slot machine lever every time we have a chance at Azerite Gear. The only exception is raid.

By only adding scaling to Emissary rewards you are just adding another slot machine lever. This is fine, as it will overall increase the availability of Azerite. However, you can not expect players to run on this RNG loot treadmill forever.

It's only going to take so many weeks of Mythic+ Chests and Emissary Rewards not dropping THE piece that a player wants before they throw in the towel. Let players put forth high amounts of effort to earn something they actually want, rather than only giving us the option to put forth a minimal amount of effort for a shot in 100 at what we actually want.
Make Mythic+ drop Azerite Armor

There is no downside to letting M+ dungeons drop Azerite Armor. You can scale it however you see fit and it is still very RNG as that one piece most folks would be looking for is part of a loot table that is 4+ bosses of loot potential.

Make the max azerite armor piece a M+ dungeon could drop be heroic level (currently 370). Keep the mythic level azerite armor locked behind weekly cache.

Also keep in mind, when next raid tier lands you will also be changing M+ drop iLevels, meaning the person who has "ideal" item from current tier will now want to get that same item at the future level. Aka the life span of a current 370 is limited to this tier.

At any given point in time any given toon can only equip three pieces of gear, so what the hell are the devs afraid of?

Under Master Loot, I'd probably have no issues, Personal Loot creates vacuums where a few people have no drops. Having the ability to run M+7's and say pick up a 360 azerite armor piece would go a long way to helping smooth out horrid RNG that Personal Loot lottery can lead to in raids.
10/03/2018 04:11 PMPosted by Shauleynna
10/03/2018 03:56 PMPosted by Lore
The plan is to make Azerite Armor rewards from Emissary quests scale all the way up to 370


.............................WHY? Stop giving casuals free loot. Of all the solutions possible this IS NOT one of them. PLEASE JUST PUT THEM IN MYTHIC PLUS.


BECAUSE some of us loathe Mythic.
It's a nice change, especially if I'm interpreting the "spec circle" - (Can we select traits based on the spec, and does it allow me to select one trait *per spec?* , I assume that's how it's going to be based on "... two spec-specific trait options for each spec")

However the problem still lays with a pull of the slot machine of the traits you do get.

It was hard enough to grind out raids and to cross your fingers and get a chance of tier gear (which I actually don't mind doing this for a specific piece of gear, I played in vanilla in 40 man raids, so It's cool :) ) , but now we're grinding out raid bosses or doing emissaries in HOPES that the stars align and we get the best traits

So while we may get an ilvl upgrade, we're again left with the RNG of traits being the best or not

Unless you 100% balance out all traits (or even just make the difference marginal between them) , then unfortunate there will always be disappointment.

Right now if I got a 370 piece of Azerite gear with my ideal traits I'd be pumped.

Ask me in 3-6 months from now when I'm doing new content and scrapping 385+ gear I'm getting because the traits suck.

I just need to know, wasn't the point of getting rid of tier sets to avoid all this BS?

I actually *LIKED* The idea of getting rid of tier sets (again, coming from a Vanilla player!) because it made it feel like i needed to keep a 2p or a 4p of old raids armor , while hodge poding new raid gear in in order to keep "Best in slot" , which was dumb

If anything, you should have kept tier sets, but as soon as a new raid came out, then the effects of all old tier sets deplete / no longer work after the Mythic version of the new raid releases. *THAT* could have been the "Azerite armor" (like the power diminishes with the awakening of an old god, or some other verbage you could use as a lore reason).

I just feel like you're trying to fix problems by making more problems. Should have just given the neck piece it's own talent tree that shared the azerite power you pick up across/shared through all specs, that way when I change spec I can just allocate talent points into the neck piece accordingly.

Or make it so you could target specific traits to unlock them (dungeon/world achievements, killing raid bosses, etc)
10/03/2018 04:02 PMPosted by Izanna
10/03/2018 03:56 PMPosted by Lore
Thanks for all of the continued feedback and discussion around the Azerite Armor system. We’ve been following the community discussions closely, and the systems team has been focusing on making some improvements as their top priority. I’ve got some updates to share on our current thoughts, as well as some upcoming changes.

To start, here’s some of the bigger issues we’ve been seeing brought up:
  • Overall Availability: While there’s plenty of Azerite Armor in the 295-340 item level range, further sources are heavily limited and susceptible to bad luck. Even players who are doing a wide range of high-end content are still wearing at least one Item Level 340 piece, despite having replaced all their other gear several times over. Everything else about the system is basically irrelevant if you can’t get your hands on the gear in the first place.
  • Lack of Agency: When items do drop, it can feel like you’re not really given much in the way of options. You can choose whether you want this to be a Fire or a Frost piece, or a versatile one with a generic trait, but that isn’t necessarily an interesting choice. And when you look at the complete package, those choices don’t often feel like they’re having a meaningful impact on how you play your character.
  • Trait Depth: Several of the traits that are considered the “best” mathematically turn out to be some of the simplest mechanically, which reinforces the sense that the system isn’t really affecting gameplay.

We agree that those issues need to be resolved. So, here’s a few changes we’re working on:
  • 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.

Some of those changes won’t be coming until Tides of Vengeance (and you’ll see them on the PTR soon), but the overall availability of Azerite Armor is a much more pressing concern, so we’re investigating ways of hotfixing that directly into the live game. I don’t have a solid timeline on when that might be yet, but we’ll definitely have more information to share as soon as we can confirm when that can happen.


Thats really great to read. Thanks Lore, if I may ask, do you have any word on the class design state/mindset?


A lot of great ideas the only thing that worry's me is the 870 azerite from emissarys, while with the right trait a 870 will most likely be a upgrade from some 885 pieces down grading your ilvl for a upgrade always feels bad and just isn't fun. is there anyway to make it scale to 885 for now based on ilvl and then keep it up to date with each new patch so we are never less likely to be in the situation where we use a lower ilvl piece as a upgrade?
10/03/2018 05:26 PMPosted by Lore
Got a couple additional notes from the development team based on your initial responses:

  • When Siege of Zuldazar opens, loot from other sources will also increase in quality. So BfA Season 2 PvP rewards will have 5 rings, as well as M+ drops from existing dungeons, etc. Those rewards will be higher ilvl to reflect the new season. The change isn’t retroactive (items you already have won't be upgraded), but basically all endgame loot will have 5 rings once we’re in Season 2.
  • Emissary Azerite armor still scales with your item level - it's not just a flat increase. The goal is to make sure that if you have a high item level, regardless of the source of that gear (raiding, PvP, M+, etc.), you have a reliable source of comparable Azerite rewards.
  • The reason we chose Emissaries for this is that it's an issue affecting a wide range of players, not just those who are clearing Mythic+ dungeons. Adding them to Mythic+ would indeed be a great solution if you're a player who's already focused on completing high-level keystones, but doesn't really help people who just want to stick to raiding or PvP. Emissaries are accessible to everyone.
  • 370 is just the current Azerite cap for the hotfix we're working on. When Season 2 begins and the overall quality of rewards goes up, that cap will increase.


- I dont understand how saying Emissaries are available to all precludes you from also having them drop in M+ keys.

- Capping at 370 is fine and make sense for emissaries. It does NOT make sense for high key M+ where I am getting 380s all the time. It should just be both.

- This does not address the targetable traits issue until 8.1 drops, whenever that ends up being.

I want to play the game and be rewarded NOW as I am paying, not when you get around to fixing this.
Thank you for putting them in the emissaries. Never have been able to enjoy M+ with the time limit and the schedule makes anything but jumping into a PUG for a boss or two difficult. Pretty excited about this.
10/04/2018 06:54 AMPosted by Lorith
10/03/2018 04:11 PMPosted by Shauleynna
...

.............................WHY? Stop giving casuals free loot. Of all the solutions possible this IS NOT one of them. PLEASE JUST PUT THEM IN MYTHIC PLUS.


BECAUSE some of us loathe Mythic.


Allowing Azerite Gear to drop from Mythic+ takes nothing away from the folks who don't enjoy the system. You would still be able to obtain 370 Azerite from Emissaries.

Mythic+ is a challenging activity at least on par with heroic raiding, and deserves to be rewarded as such. If they are worried about the unlimited nature of the rewards then they can put a cap on Azerite drops from Mythic Dungeon chests to prevent incessant farming.

Why not create some infusion or token that can be used on a Keystone or the Pedestal that will allow the dungeon to drop Azerite gear for you, and you alone. They could limit the amount of infusions available to prevent unending Mythic+ farming for Azerite, but still allow us to target the gear we want.
Lol, bad fixes, dodging the real issues. More RNG is not a fix. Reaffirms my decision to cancel my sub.
10/04/2018 06:37 AMPosted by Vonkara
10/03/2018 04:11 PMPosted by Shauleynna
...

.............................WHY? Stop giving casuals free loot. Of all the solutions possible this IS NOT one of them. PLEASE JUST PUT THEM IN MYTHIC PLUS.


So everyone should be forced to do Mythic+ for gear?
I really like the idea thrown around here and in other threads to let the Weekly Cache drop three items BUT you can only choose one of them. If every other week one of those was guaranteed to be an Azerite piece, but it would make the weekly chest feel a whole lot better. Sure you might still get 3 worthless items, but you have a much better chance of at least getting something you can use out of the choice of 3 and if Azerite was commonly a choice you could most likely at least get a cool upgrade for your offspec if nothing else.

I also agree that Emissary was probably the right choice here. Azerite is meant for everyone. You still get plenty of rewards from M+ imo /shrug. Especially if they would implement an idea like the one I just mentioned.
10/04/2018 07:10 AMPosted by Failedwizard
10/04/2018 06:37 AMPosted by Vonkara
...


So everyone should be forced to do Mythic+ for gear?


Or raid, yes. If you aren't doing either of those, you don't need better gear.
10/03/2018 03:56 PMPosted by Lore
[ul]
  • 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.


  • Others have said it already -- plenty of others -- but in this case, I feel that the more that speak out the better:

    First of all, it is nice to see a greater frequency in communication between us and the dev team. So, thank you for that.

    I do however have to question whether there is a... lack of understanding when it comes to our issues, or perhaps something gets lost in translation, because your "solutions" feel like you didn't really listen to us at all.

    You speak about making Azerite Armor more available for all kinds of players, through a method everyone can utilize, and yet the method you choose is one that remains completely random and out of our control, and (on top of that) offers only a limited choice of Azerite Armor pieces (and thus Azerite powers as well).

    Not only that, you limit the level of those items to 370, on a scaling model that is mostly useless, as it will not offer the highest tier of gear until we're already at (or above) it anyway. It also doesn't address the concerns of people who strive for, and hunt for, the higher level items, and who target specific traits to round out their characters. People who already spend countless hours doing the M+ or raid runs will find little to no benefit to yet another random Emissary drop, especially if that drop would take them down 15 ilevels.

    But, above of all this, is your obsession with randomness. World of Warcraft has become a casino of loot and we're just forced to spend our days pulling the lever mindlessly and hoping that we'll end up with something decent.

    You could easily fix this issue by giving us actual control and allowing us to work towards our goal gear, rather than have to cross our fingers every day and pray that we get lucky.

    Other people have mentioned tokens to level up items. That's definitely a solution, and it already exists for PvP items, so you'd not have to work hard to make something similar for PvE.

    You could add quests -- whether daily or weekly -- that we can work towards for specific items (similar to the Conquest weekly quest, for example).

    You could -- gasp -- make professions meaningful by actually letting us gather items from dungeons or quests or even emissary boxes (or ALL of the above, so you'd not let anyone out) and allow us to craft the pieces we need, trade them or sell them or, a novel idea for WoW though it has existed in other games for decades (see EQ2 for example) add a commission system to tradeskills so that we can provide a crafter with the requisite materials and have them directly craft the item and place it in our bags, even if the end result is no-trade.

    Yet still you persist with your randomness and remove any choice or option from us.

    So... thanks for being more communicative, I guess, but you really, really need to listen and comprehend better -- or at least the dev team needs to when you take our concerns over to them, because your solutions are almost more disheartening that the issues we have already been complaining about for months now.

    D.
    More rng on top of rng. There is no way to target traits and there will be no way to target traits. I'm tired of this !@#$ing slot machine! Put the gear in m+ like it should have been from the beginning! Your world quests are boring af an this isn't going to fix that. WE DON'T WANT MORE RNG! IS THIS CLEAR ENOUGH FEEDBACK FOR YOU!
    Why does this feel like the school yard ....

    Blizzard just tripple dog dared us .... They went beyond doubling down....

    I don't see how adding a 5th ring is going to simplify our need to carry more gear for more specs.

    So for DPS we'll have AOE gear ... ST gear .... Then you'll have tanking gear ... healing gear .... That's 4 sets of gear for Monk....

    Or the fact that Mythic + gear has different traits prioritized for more utility. .... Add anouther set of gear.

    Where is blizzard with the reforging costs... They have no intention on us not having an entire bag devoted to gear.
    I think this is a step in the right direction. Having to grind warfronts for 3 or 4 days straight for a single trait and having to wait for it to roll around was frustrating.

    P.S. can you make it so that more then 1 hunter can stack steady aim?
    How is having 15 pieces of Azerite gear worse than having to carry around 22 legendaries?
    10/03/2018 05:26 PMPosted by Lore
    Got a couple additional notes from the development team based on your initial responses:

    • When Siege of Zuldazar opens, loot from other sources will also increase in quality. So BfA Season 2 PvP rewards will have 5 rings, as well as M+ drops from existing dungeons, etc. Those rewards will be higher ilvl to reflect the new season. The change isn’t retroactive (items you already have won't be upgraded), but basically all endgame loot will have 5 rings once we’re in Season 2.
    • Emissary Azerite armor still scales with your item level - it's not just a flat increase. The goal is to make sure that if you have a high item level, regardless of the source of that gear (raiding, PvP, M+, etc.), you have a reliable source of comparable Azerite rewards.
    • The reason we chose Emissaries for this is that it's an issue affecting a wide range of players, not just those who are clearing Mythic+ dungeons. Adding them to Mythic+ would indeed be a great solution if you're a player who's already focused on completing high-level keystones, but doesn't really help people who just want to stick to raiding or PvP. Emissaries are accessible to everyone.
    • 370 is just the current Azerite cap for the hotfix we're working on. When Season 2 begins and the overall quality of rewards goes up, that cap will increase.


    I don't get it. Our complaints are all about how there is no way to target specific gear, and how pretty much every source of equipment is now basically just a slot machine. Mythic+ is the thing that's furthest from a slot machine (or at least gives the greatest certainty regarding loot), because it lets us roll on the loot table of a single dungeon. So, to alleviate the difficulties behind getting Azerite gear, you're just going to put it inside another slot machine? You're going to make us roll on the entirety of available Azerite pieces every day?

    I'll also point out that though everyone has access to world quests and emissaries, not everyone enjoys them. I would even argue that most people really dislike them. Adding "good" Azerite gear to the Emissary quests is a bandaid fix and a small start AT BEST.

    I'll also point out that you're already forcing people who "only want to raid" to participate in Mythic Plus - there is NO way to be competitive in a raid environment unless you've geared your character out primarily from Mythic Plus.

    You guys are completely ignoring the actual core of the agency complaint. We want to be able to pick a goal, and push towards it. We don't want a way to endlessly "roll for success" on that goal - we want a reliable, trackable, and specific way to push for certain pieces of gear.

    What was wrong with the token system? I don't remember having any issues with that. You could easily give us tokens for all forms of content (raid bosses can drop them, M+ chests can drop them, PvP chests can drop them, WQ's can give them out), and let us trade them to Magni for whatever Azerite piece we want. Make them crazy expensive, put a weekly cap on how many tokens you can get - whatever makes you happy and feel like the players aren't winning. Just let us pick the Azerite traits we want. This is no different than the absurdity of not being able to select Legendaries, which I think you fixed by LETTING US PICK OUR LEGENDARIES.
    10/04/2018 06:54 AMPosted by Lorith
    10/03/2018 04:11 PMPosted by Shauleynna
    ...

    .............................WHY? Stop giving casuals free loot. Of all the solutions possible this IS NOT one of them. PLEASE JUST PUT THEM IN MYTHIC PLUS.


    BECAUSE some of us loathe Mythic.


    Then there is the fact that some of us CANT GET INTO M+ Cause we play classes that are blanket denied access to anything above +2...

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