TIMEWALKER SPECIAL – New way to fight Content Droughts…

news-Aug-20

Today I’ll talk about something that apparently blind-sided me completely – the mysterious Timewalker content.

I remember hearing theories and predictions of various more or less educated people on MMO-Champion forums before WoD was even announced at the last years Blizzcon, where people even shared allegedly screenshots of the new WoW class – the Timewalker.

All of that ended up being kinda bullshit, people laughed, and forgotten about it. Ever since then, when I saw something that had word “Timewalker” in it, I just glazed over it and ignored it.

Now, MMO-Champion folks reported highlights of an interview that German gaming website – Buffed.de – had with Tom Chilton (you were busy at GamesCom, haven’t you, Tom?), and to my surprise I saw a vague-ish reference to Timewalker Content…

WTF is that now?!” – I thought. As MMO-Champ’s summary of the interview was pretty brief, I decided to go to the German source and dug out a bit more info on what ACTUALLY was said, to clarify any confusion, excitement, and doubts of players similar to myself – who missed any mention of the future of Timewalkers in WoD.

So here you go, let’s refresh our memory with the help of our German friends:

Tom Chilton compares WoD to WotlK in it’s premise – it’s not about Horde or Alliance, it’s about us once again uniting in the face of the common enemy

I.e. to those who were concerned about WoD trailer looking a bit “Horde”-ish, Tom tries to bring back memories of WotlK trailer which could be looked at as being all about history and characters originating from Alliance.

Well… I personally don’t care. I’m just sick of orc faces everywhere. But the trailer was awesome regardless.

What are Timewalker Dungeons?
It’s the dungeons that have been down-scaled in level to the level of your character

Apparently once again those dungeons – while sounding like an awesome idea (that’s what RIFT does, for example), Blizzard “doesn’t know for sure” how to implement and introduce those dungeons yet, as apparently the concern is how those dungeons would fit with the existing (present time?) content.

They like the idea of players downscaling in level and playing old dungeons. Yep, who wouldn’t? You don’t need to do any more art, design, coding work – you just update Excel spreadsheet numbers, plus put a level scaling formula/system around it.

SOME work and testing for you, Blizzard folks, no doubt, but nowhere near introducing something actually NEW into the game. So I’d personally push for it as your Delivery Manager very strongly, and reap the benefits.

Biggest challenge in introducing Timewalker Dungeons is…
The appropriate rewards system, believe it or not.

Yes, no shit, people want to be rewarded, as well as ABSTRACTLY have fun re-running content they’ve actually seen a million times already, you got that right, Tom, I’m becoming a big fan of yours….

So, the main thing that I sort of understood from German-to-English translation of the interview is that Blizzard is waiting for some sort of a CONTENT GAP, when they’ll feel like they need to press the cheap and cheerful button that would enable “Timewalker content”, and therefore reward the players.

I could be wrong here, but it sounds to me like they HAVE the feature technically ready behind the scenes (perhaps without detailed rewards, but that would take them 1 week to finalize, not longer than that…) but are waiting till we run out of things to do, basically.

Then they’d invest A BIT of time into finalising rewards (whatever those might be – drops, transmog items, some tokens/valor points, etc), and enable that feature as a content gap-filler, quite cheaply for themselves.

It’s certainly not the “we just don’t know how to reward you at this point” case. Nope. They are way too smart and calculated for that.

Blizzard doesn’t want Timewalker Dungeons to “compete” with Heroic dungeons of WoD

Expanding this further, they are clearly budgeting content in terms of releasing it to the public and letting it run concurrently.

I.e. they don’t want us to have too much food on the table at the same time. They’d rather us get Normals, Heroics, Mythics, LFR, etc, first, and THEEEEN maybe they’ll throw something new (or something that feels new) in the mix.

They keep talking about rewards and their appropriateness for various character levels, but in fact I’m more than certain right now that it’s all about smart management of future content droughts. Very smart, in fact.

Timewalker content – theoretically possible to apply the same system to the old raids

A reference was also made to applying the same “Timewalker system” to the old raids, not just dungeons.

That was indicated as next step for them though, so if you and I are not getting Timewalker dungeons any time soon in WoD – looks like raids are even further down the pipeline.

Semi-related: the upscaled Molten Core LFR for 10 year Anniversary
Apparently it shouldn’t take a new level 100 character too long to gear up and be ready to run that limited-time LFR…

Blues are saying they didn’t do too much fine-tuning and balancing around the upscaled MC. Primary purpose of the run is to satisfy your nostalgic feelings and get one-time rewards (i.e. the Core Hound mount). Not reusable content, that would make sense making challenging for them.

So probably is going to be piss-easy and successfully PUGgable in questing greens, I’d say.

………..

That’s all for today in this Timewalker Content special, folks. I’ll have a bit more dissected news and interview contents for you tomorrow.