MMO-Games recently published a Legion interview they did with Tom Chilton and Ion Hazzikostas. It’s a bit unclear when the interview took place — it seems like it happened at or shortly after Gamescom — but it is just being published now. At any rate, it’s short enough to take a look at if you have a couple of minutes.
The news for hunters is that probably the Hunter Class Hall will be located in the Highmountain zone in the Broken Isles, “because they have a hunters lodge up there”, according to Hazzikostas.
Ummm, okay. But I am a tad confused. What difference should it make whether there is an existing structure or not? The halls will be basically instances, no? Like garrisons? So the player experience should be, you get to the general area, you see the portal to the instance (like you see the garrison gate and structural outlines now), then you enter the instance when you get close enough, assuming you meet the class requirement. It seems like it would be trivial to plunk down a hunter lodge type structure pretty much anywhere?
I don’t really have any strong feelings about where a Hunter Class Hall should be located, but it strikes me that this entire expansion is going to be about traditional lore, and in general will be very heavy on history. The artifact weapons, for example, will be the weapons used by WoW historical heroes. So why would you place a Hunter Class Hall in an area that holds no real player significance, no historical pull, for hunters?
And not for nothin’, Ion, but after the discussions about the great significance of the warlock class hall location, and all the debate back and forth about the appropriateness of locating the rogue class hall in the Dalaran underground, your sole reason for choosing a location for hunters is “because they have a hunters lodge up there”?
That’s like saying the location for the mage class hall will be Theramore “because they have a mage tower there”.
It is hard to escape the notion that Blizz has completely written off the hunter class for the game and is bent on ignoring it as much as possible. Having destroyed the very foundation of hunter play with the Legion spec changes, why bother to put any thought into the class hall location? Just stick them somewhere and move on to important things, like coming up with a few more melee classes or figuring out how long we can delay flying in Legion.
Just before this illuminating disclosure of the hunter class hall location, Chilton was asked to comment on the possibility of the changes to hunter specs playing out across all classes. The exchange:
MMOGames: Demon Hunters have only two specs, and your presentation points to Hunters having one of their specs evolving into a role similar to Amazons in Diablo: is this going to play out across all Class Specs?
Tom Chilton: Almost right but not quite. Just because the survival hunters weapon is a spear, it’s a melee weapon not a bow, that’s because we’re evolving that particular spec to be a melee hunter. It will be the hunter in melee with their pet. The marksmanship hunter will be a ranged hunter with no pet and the beastmaster hunter will be a ranged hunter with a pet. That’s how we’re evolving the distinction between those and that’s why the survival hunters artifact is a spear. that’s different from the Amazon in Diablo III, she was a ranged javelin thrower.
Well, thank you, Tom. In answer to the question, will all class specs get the same treatment hunter class specs are getting, you explained what changes hunters will get. Oh, and apparently the hunter spear cannot be thrown. Very enlightening. And while we are at it, thank you, MMO Games interviewer, for allowing him to skate by deliberately misinterpreting your question as “Will all hunter class specs resemble the Amazon in Diablo III?”
Journalism at its best.
While we are at it, I wonder why exactly Chilton was even in that interview. He contributed nothing of interest, in fact sometimes he contributed nothing even coherent. Example:
MMOGames: What lessons have you learned from Draenor in managing player expectations in terms of lore and storyline?
Tom Chilton: I’m not sure that I agree [with the question] on a fundamental level. It’s the assumption of a statement of fact that there is less story in Draenor than there is previous expansions. When we made the announcement, and right before the announcement we ran the story that has happened so far trailer.
If you take that and combine it with the Lords of War series that we did, you know things that led up to the expansion and all that kind of stuff… and you compare it against any other expansion, except maybe Mists of Pandaria, it comes out overwhelmingly favorable. So I don’t know that it’s something I agree with.
It says something about the current state of affairs at Blizz when two of its key game project managers have no clear concept of their message, when they cannot state fundamental goals for an expansion. Blizz would be better off hiring a couple U.S. Presidential candidates as spokespersons — at least they are skilled at giving non-answers to questions, and they are a darned sight more entertaining than the act of Chilton and Hazzikostas.
I need alcohol and a weekend.