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Horde Paladins and Alliance Shaman in WoW Expansion 153

Posted by Zonk
from the confused-little-dwarf dept.
Gamespot has the news that Blizzard will be allowing 'crossover' classes with the new races promised for the Burning Crusade expansion. The Paladin class, up until now an Alliance class, will be allowed for the Horde race of Blood Elves. Likewise, the Alliance Draenei will be able to choose the Horde Shaman class. From the article: "According to Blizzard, Horde paladins and Alliance shamans will have many of the same talents of their traditional counterparts, though they "will also enjoy some unique abilities to themselves, similar to the priest class' racial specialties." Since this new feature will fundamentally change the asymmetry between the game's two factions, it will presumably have a significant impact on the way the game is played, especially in competitive player-versus-player combat." It's also likely to somewhat balance the preference between the two factions. A pretty race for the Horde, and what is considered (by some) a very powerful class for the Alliance.
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Horde Paladins and Alliance Shaman in WoW Expansion

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  • by GundamFan (848341) on Friday July 21, 2006 @02:36PM (#15758864)
    Perhaps... but then again I know enough people who strongly advocate the game to imply it at least had a soul at some point and heavy handed game balance changes with no respect for the established game world story or "fluff" as some call it is high on my list of ways MMOGs can lose there souls.

    If the game still appeals to you feel free to play it... I will likely never touch it if this is how the developer choses to go about changing there game.
  • WoW forums explode. Incidentally, Blizzard information page [worldofwarcraft.com] containing lore about the announcement.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 21, 2006 @02:45PM (#15758965)
    From Eyonix, a Blizzard employee:

    "Something we have always held to as a core design philosophy is developing classes which are distinct from each other. This means developing a class with it's own abilities that clearly separate it from other classes in terms of how the class plays and operates, both for the player and from a design stand-point.

    Early on in the inception of this game, it was a hot debate as to whether factions should have a specific class, which they alone have access to. Some wanted all classes to be distinct from each other, but accessible by all. Others thought that more flavor could be generated by keeping a class unique to a faction. Obviously, if you have one side with a unique class, you should probably give the other faction a unique class as well. Thus, Shaman and Paladins became those unique classes.

    However, by linking them in a relationship as unique counter-points, options are closed for our main design goal, which is to keep classes distinct. We want factions to be balanced, but don't want to cut and paste abilities from one to the other and homogenize the classes. If we went that road, there would be little difference or need for a distinct class. We want classes to be different in more than just name-only or superficial appearances.

    So, in our desire to keep the classes distinct and open up new possibilities for development of each class, shaman and paladins shall now be a playable class for both factions. This decision comes at a time when we have an opportunity to blend this decision into future development. Namely, with the new races in the upcoming expansion. Prior to the new races, the Paladin and Shaman lent themselves easily to their own factions and not that well to the opposite faction (Tauren Paladin? Gnome Shaman?) With the advent of the two additional races, the choice was made more clear in game design and lore.

    In terms of game design, one of the options it opens up is for specific classes in dungeon encounters. We already have several encounters that highlight the abilities of a single class or make use of a classes specific abilities. Shaman and Paladins in the previous design could not participate in such encounters. If killing a creature required a Shaman, the Alliance could never beat the encounter and vice versa. This change allows the two classes to bring their own abilities into a situation which may highlight their class as an integral part of the encounter."

    This is actually one of the few official responses from Blizz that I see as legit. Hopefully they can give the paladin and the shaman some really cool and distinct new abilities in the expansion.
  • Re:Doesn't Fit.. (Score:3, Informative)

    by MBGMorden (803437) on Friday July 21, 2006 @03:13PM (#15759198)
    Even the undead aren't necessarily all evil. There's even one undead (Forsaken) who's a member of the Argent Dawn (who if you don't play, is a group dedicated to fighting and pushing back the invasion of the Scourge/Burning Legion).
  • by snuf23 (182335) on Friday July 21, 2006 @04:33PM (#15759780)
    "From personal experience I have found that the people who tend to leave WoW are the ones who can't play along with others."

    That's such a hilarious generalization. You know some people leave because they get bored of it. Or don't care for the repetitive nature of the end game.
    I myself just got bored with it and I was a high up guild officer who played nicely with others. It was a bit hard to walk away from the social side of it, but in the end I wasn't enjoying myself much so I left. Saying that people who quit playing are anti-social pricks is just stupid.
  • Re:More of the same (Score:2, Informative)

    by Hikaru79 (832891) on Friday July 21, 2006 @07:26PM (#15760830) Homepage
    As a relatively strong Starcraft player, I have to take issue with your claim that Brood War "screwed up the balance." Ask any strong player, I think they will all agree that Brood War is head and shoulders above vanilla Starcraft, particularly for the Terran who were not very often played before Medics. Now Terran are one of the most prominent races in the professional circles. Blizzard did not make Hellfire. Lord of Destruction is arguably the best expansion pack for a game ever. Two new classes, a huge new act, tons of new game mechanics (charms, runes, etc), lots of improvements, even a new UI, sort of (the larger resolution essentially changes the UI in a few meaningful ways). LoD is practically a new game, there's no turning back to regular D2. And The Frozen Throne COMPLETELY revamped a lot of the internal mechanics of WC3, and made it a much more complex and balanced game. The distinction between the different armor classes, etc, are now key when considering counterplay. If anything, Blizzard makes the best expansions of any game company I've ever seen, essentially doubling the amount of single-player content (always a full new line of campaigns), and improving and adding significantly to the existing multiplayer game. I've never been disappointed in Blizzard before, I see no reason to start now.

"Necessity is the mother of invention" is a silly proverb. "Necessity is the mother of futile dodges" is much nearer the truth. -- Alfred North Whitehead

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