Touch in the Night

There will not be many words today, just these amazing shots of Schlitzchen in her class order hall.

Schlitzchen2

Schlitzchen

Don’t forget to buy your night potion in the coming Darkmoon Faire!

I’ll be off now for a long weekend – reputations won’t grind themselves :)

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Class Order Hall Followers 7.2.

Weekend was totally devoted to acquiring new Class Order Hall followers for my toons, and I’ve seen them for every class. It was a fun journey!

So, here are the impressions. I would grade the questlines in three groups: Awww, Eh and Meh.

The questlines are very similar: first you are sent to class-specific zone of Azeroth, then every class goes to Broken Shore to solve a tactical task. You get a quest companion / briefing NPC almost immediately, so it’s easy to guess who will be your new follower.

Let’s start with “Meh”

“Meh” Follower Questlines

1/ Warlock: the new follower is Kanrethad Ebonlocke, the former leader of the warlock circle. First we cope with cultists in Azsuna, and then you go to Brokens Shore’s most eastern corner to stop some demon resurrection or whatever. The follower is the least interesting, the questline is dull, and it’s grind, grind, grind. It even involves a grinding fill-the-bar quest which I could do simultaneously with a world quest. You know what? I could have completed THREE of these world quests while I did this campaign fill-the-bar grind.

2/ Warrior: warriors get one of the significant faction figures: Darius Crowley for Alliance players or Eitrigg for Horde players. It’s the worst questline as you never guess what should you do… Yes, you return to Helheim because you need to save Valar’jar from Helya’s realm.

Vikings – are – boring. We are doing one and the same thing with vikings through questing in Stormheim, world quests, warrior order hall campaign, a dungeon, and then a raid. All this pathetic speech about halls of valor and helya. We are not that stupid, we got it the first time, thank you. Please just fucking stop it. I’m not excited by any vrykul stuff, it’s boring by itself, and with every new lore piece there are only more iterations of one and the same shit, throughout the whole expansion. Their story just doesn’t evolve anywhere. At Broken Shore you liberate Horde or Alliance warriors at naga enclave, and raise vrykul from the sea to crush Legion portals. In two words, it’s awful.

I never want to see a single vrykul in my life ever again. Apparently I will at least have to “prove my valor” for a millionth time to get a class mount, and I’m already crying at the perspective. Look, even the guy himself is bored. Get a life, man! Azeroth is a place full of wonders.

Odyn

3/ Paladin: Your new follower is a no-name Nerus Moonfang, a Night Elf ghost. He sold the asses of his people to Legion, so we retrieve his relics in Val’sharah, and then we go to liberate the ghosts near the Broken Shore northern flight point. He didn’t seem any interesting to me, I don’t care if his redemption is successful, so the questline is just “Let it be”. To compensate, paladins may get a second follower: Maximillian of Northshire. Apparently I didn’t do his Un’Goro quests in my pally, so he wasn’t available for me yet. The guy is hilarious, so I definitely want to see the sequel of his story.

“Eh” Follower Questlines

4/ Mage: Aethas Sunreaver, the Horde leader in old Dalaran. He somehow rushes in the Order Hall and says: I’m with you now! Let’s forget how we helped Garrosh to try and destroy the world, and then you slaughtered us! My Micromantica is a close friend of Jaina, and she cannot greet Aethas with her hands open.

So, why couldn’t he at least be there from the very beginning of Legion invasion?

Anyways, we travel to Suramar and retrieve some what’s-its to strengthen Dalaran’s defense. A decent cause, and it wasn’t much boring.

Mages also get another follower: Alazakzaram, the trickster goblin in Dalaran who is also a mission table guy in our order hall. There’s a small and funny travel into his tophat:

Alazakzaram

I secretly hoped that our new follower could be Valtrois. Alas, did not happen.

5/ Rogue: Again it depends on the faction. You receive either Tess Greymane (Alliance follower), daughter of Genn and heir to the Gilneas throne or Lilian Voss (Horde follower), the famous Undead rogue you may know from Scholomance or Tirisfal Glades questline.

Your goal is diversion, so you travel to pirate enclave in Azsuna to steal some black powder, and then you go to Broken Shore to blow up a cave with some serious Legion leaders within.

I liked how the Broken Shore part was designed, but that pirate enclave is depressing, swarming with unnecessary mobs (flight and stealth doesn’t help much), and your briefing guy admiral Tethys is just an idiot. And not a hilarious idiot, but an annoying idiot type. This is why I’d say the Rogue experience is 50/50, so Eh.

6/ Shaman: one more questionable morale questline. You new follower is no less than Magatha Grimtotem who’s responsible for Cairne Bloodhoof’s treacherous death, and who attempted to claim Thunder Bluff to herself. In other words, Grimtotem tribe are evil Tauren. She rushes into our Order Hall, and guards won’t let her in. You go with her to Thousand Needles because Legion is an ultimate enemy, so we must help her. And then she tries to get some Pebble of Doom to herself – well, because she’s evil. We don’t let her, and we go to Broken Shore to stop the demons messing around with elements. Magatha accompanies us.

The whole questline seemed so unnatural. If we don’t trust her, why would we leave her to hang out in our Order Hall? And the Pebble of Doom was something not well explained or introduced, first it’s obtained as some loot like ‘old fingernail’, and then it’s an action button which nearly got me killed. I couldn’t care less. It’s very close to “Meh”, but it’s my favorite elements in action. And I also awarded bonus points for travel to Thousand Needles (could have been Deepholm or Firelands or Vashjir, so blessed be Blizzard).

7/ Hunter: Remember how you “bolstered our ranks” by “seeking out the withered” and suddenly there came a wandering elite rider from behind and killed you in seconds? This is Nighthuntress Syrenne, a new follower in Survival spec of hunters’ order hall.

First you find her injured riding manakitty in Crimson Thicket and cure it, then naturally you make friends with the rider herself. And you go together to Broken Shore to liberate many beasts from fel corruption. It’s a solid good questline, and in true hunter style. I felt affection to the follower, and I’m glad that shal’dorei joined us.

8/ Monk: Your follower is brewmaster Almai, a Pandaren girl. You return to Stormstout Brewery to save it from Legion invasion, and then a terrible treachery happens in your own order hall. It’s one of the two order halls that are attacked by Legion directly. When you clear the mess, you go to the central part of Broken Shore to prevent making poisonous fel alcohol.

You would never think, but the jovial monks tonight are engaged in one of the most grave questlines. There’s not a grain of fun in the questline, it’s very tragic and serious.

9/ Demon Hunter: the follower is Lady S’theno, the leader of your order hall naga. This lady just got bored of sitting on her tail in your order hall, so she wants some action. Trouble comes right to you: Mardum world and your own spaceship are suddenly attacked by Legion, so you fight with the demons right at your order hall and outside.

Mardum

Then you go to Broken Shore, to Tomb of Sargeras grounds to retrieve few mats for repairing your order hall and recover the defenses. The questline is pretty boring, but I liked how Lady S’theno openly despises you, Illidan, your order hall, your illidari, and claims that she’s on her own. She doesn’t obey, she cooperates. She acts because she believes this is right, not because illidari stuff and home are awesome. My Melaris the Demon Hunter has exactly the same thoughts, so I think we could be friends.

“Awww” Follower Questlines

10/ Priest: your follower would be Aelthalyste, a Priest trainer from the Undercity. Not faction specific, because my priest is a Gnome. The questline is awesome. You go to Highmountain swamps in the north to investigate the infestation and help find a cure for Aelthalyste’s apprentice. During the quests you need to use a wide range of priest’s special abilities. Then you go to Broken Shore island to dispatch some plague devices.

The questline is very fun, inventive and awesome, although I was very surprised to find a banshee as a priest follower :)

11/ Death Knight: will be followed by Minerva Ravensorrow, an Undead Death Knight. The goal is to retrieve an item from Pit of Saron – so that you’d be able to rez some dead dragons to your cause. And then you naturally go to Stormheim where you could find the dead dragons graveyard :) You rez some, and then there’s an ice breath bombardment as a climax rather than you common boss fight.

Mindebad_Four_Horsemen_Death_Knights

Minerva, despite being a Death Knight and an Undead, is a very cheerful person. I laughed so hard at her speeches and a comical voice :) So I was just glad she joined me :)

Minerva_Ravensorrow_follower

12/ Druid: the last, but not the least is Thisalee Crow. Druid of the Purr, Thisalee is a hyperactive and fierce Night Elf teenager. We go to Hyjal to cope with demons at Aviana’s sanctuary. Then we learn that Goldrinn, the big white wolf, is in depression because Varian died! So the wolf just slumbers in Moonglade, and demons want to corrupt him, or tickle him to death – either way, we are on errand to wake him. We do, and the most awesome follower Thisalee joins us =^+^=.

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Order Hall campaigns are cool and inventive. I like how they brought us to different corners of Azeroth, showed us that all the world is threated. I liked how Blizzard gave every class a new storyline, and eventually they all took part in striking Legion in Broken Shore: every class in his own area. So when you’ve seen all, you can see the whole picture how order halls work to defeat the Legion at every front.

The Shower of Big Deals

These days it was raining with the long-term goals coming to an end. Here’s what happened one after another:

1. Suramar Portals 

suramar-portals

I knew I must open all of them, and this last gap was bothering me. But I never thought I would find this last portal unexpected. I just came across it on my way to daily quest.

Zing!

2. Upgrading All Followers

defenders

It just came to an end for Micromantica after persistent work. All her followers are now of rare quality and 850 ilvl.

Once I have that achievement, I don’t feel like I’m gonna do the same for other toons. I just need an ultimate team of 5 coolest and most favorite followers in every order hall. Once the team covers all the threats, the rest go to barracks and stay there.

3. My First Legendary Epic Item!

Gardell, my Blood Elf Paladin girl, was the first among my toons to lay her hands on an epic item of 895. She drew a plate belt from daily box in Val’sharah, quite unexpected. I’ve never craved any legendary things as they are a complete random, so why even bother? :) It was a very pleasant surprise, but I was not overexcited.

It’s nice how the belt changed its appearance when you change specs. It would add a holy book if you try to spec into healer. Anyways, I’m a retribution crusader, so it’s spec back and transmog.

4. Timewalking Horse

Lizgun the Hunter found herself at 4875 tokens saved since Spring, so she naturally went for one more dungeon to buy us a ghost horse for 5k. We ran The Nexus, it went smooth and fast, no delays, no deaths, just a fast run.

It was funny how after you kill the Ormorok elemental, you go through a tunnel and jump down to proceed to the last dragon boss. My pet naturally can’t jump, so it went all the way round and aggroed an extra pack we were supposed to miss. When I realized that was about to happen, I dismissed my pet, but it was too late and they ran after me, even if I was in another room from aggro radius and never came close to the mobs myself. Long story short, the mobs came to us, we kicked their asses in a pair of seconds (nothing bad happened), but party members posted in chat: Hunters are so Hunters… and laughed a lot.

Yeah, even if you’re a melee hunter (and I am), it won’t save you from hunter destiny.

Anyways, the horse is mine!

5. Side Effect of Campaigns: Artifact Appearance

Normally I stay with the first tier, it seems like the best for me. But this one:

paitsu-artifact-keg-weapon

It’s opened when you finish class order hall campaign, and I’ve wanted this keg staff ever since it was datamined in Spring or even earlier. OMG, and finally I have it! Not the funny dangling pints, but the KEG!

6. Class Order Hall Campaigns – Feat of Strength

legendary-campaign-feat-of-strength

Yeah!

The journey was exciting. I strongly enjoyed the storytelling, the lore, your strong bonds with your class. In warlock case, you cannot win the final battle until you remember about your rarely-to-never used, a very specific spell of temporarily banishing a demon. The other classes also find some use of their spellbook.

My favorite campaigns were Death Knight, Demon Hunter, Hunter, Monk and Shaman.

I would highly recommend this content – for I find it the best thing in Legion yet.

hexen-110
Rogue Hexen was the last to complete her campaign

So, What’s Next?

My next goals are more or less in vein of the previous expansions: gaining ilvl and AP.

  • I want to run Emerald Nightmare LFR with all the toons at least once – and tank there with my two tanks.
  • I need to gain ilvl and AP for that.
  • I need to complete Suramar questline on Micromantica (14k/21k, come on!) and go for the next chapter.
  • I need to see the missed side questlines in every zone – especially Stormheim and Highmountain
  • I need to remember about my Professions at last, and do some thorough questing and leveling.

Well, the journey is far from over :)

Legion Garrisons aka Class Order Halls

Let’s continue talking about Legion expansion impressions. My next post would be about class order halls.

Having completed artifact weapons for every class, I managed to see all the class order halls.

Of course they couldn’t be equally cool, but Blizzard tried their very best to communicate class fantasy to us. This they achieved. But order halls are not equal in terms of coolness. It’s probably to every person’s liking, but here’s my rating.

Top class order halls for me would be:

  • Druid – the most peaceful lush area ever. It’s all the beauty of Val’sharah enhanced tenfold.
  • Hunter – I fell in love with the lodge. It’s a refuge in the wilds, so cozy and tranquil.
  • Priest – the temple is plain but absolutely majestic.
  • Shaman – the Maelstrom is fun. These caves give a feeling of space, and it’s live as hell.

Nice order halls which lack something nevertheless:

  • Warrior – yes, it’s basically Valhalla, and the viking spirit is there. Still a feast hall is just a hall, I’ve expected more of feast going on there.
  • Monk – it’s the central temple at a floating turtle, the pandaren starting zone. Beautiful and full of colors, but the statue in the center sucks out all the space of the hall.
  • Warlock – the design is not so good. There’s too much fel world stones which draw all the attention from the details.

These order halls are well done according to class fantasy, but failed to deliver the wow-effect:

  • Demon Hunter, Rogue, Death Knight – well, it’s basically just a hideout in Dalaran, just a Felhammer spaceship and just an Acherus. Nothing more, nothing less.

These order halls are plain dull:

  • Paladin
  • Mage

As for how these Order Halls work – well, I’m totally happy. It’s an improved Garrison, a polished one – the one which should have been in Draenor.

Mission table is awesome, and that is why:

  1. You have very few followers, and they all have names and matter. You can learn them, yes. They are not just ‘match a cube with a square hole and cylinder with a round hole’ game. They are persons.
  2. They yell something when you assign them for mission. Again, it reminds you that they are living and acting heroes, not items.
  3. You can send two heroes for a three-people mission. That’s what I lacked in Draenor so much. You could win the mission with 1 follower, but you had to assign another two just to fill the slots.
  4. There is a campaign chained to the missions.
  5. The rewards are significant, and they matter. They are worth sending for.
  6. The number of missions is not overwhelming, and they are exactly as long as you need not to return to Order Hall every hour, but also have these few minutes of peaceful activity to do in the morning and in the evening.
  7. The ‘Santa’s Little Helper’ feature – in the mage hall I’ve explored so far you can hire/summon water elementals and battle mages. These squads act as a significant mission support, and I like that they are not eternal, but vanish after a pair of missions. It’s a nice game.

There’s an Order Hall upgrade option, but it seemed to me a bit dull. You choose one of the options like in Starcraft Terran campaign. The very same tech tree, several tiers, you choose one of two options per tier. I wish that upgrading through tiers would change the looks of the Order Hall, adding some details. Maybe it does, but I didn’t notice it yet? I’ve improved to tier one so far.

Finally, there’s this artifact improvement item. Animations are great, but it annoys a bit that you have to visit it every time you collect enough AP. Still I would vote for this small inconvenience. It adds some class fantasy and meaning into your actions.

There are also class order hall specific things. I’ve noticed one yet: at a shaman hall there is a totem puzzle on the floor, and it was very fun to play. I’ve completed the first round (it was like a daily), and saved the others for later. Maybe there are things like that in other order halls? Please tell me.

All in all Class Order Halls seem like a perfect work on the mistakes made with Warlords of Draenor Garrisons. It’s an important place and to visit it everday, but it doesn’t concentrate all your gameplay around it. It’s social. It enhances your class fantasy. And it’s a refuge where you could hang out and peep at other class champions.

Class Order Halls: 10 points out of 10