Friday, September 5, 2008

My biggest problem I have with Death Knights:

The fact that after I get done going through all that super cool new DK content, I have to go trudge off to outland, almost arbitrarily, all by myself.

If the main fight has shifted to northrend, why am I going to outland, other than to "just level"? There seems to be this huge disconnect of purpose there. I just broke free of the Lich King's will, so my first order of business is to... go to outland? Wait, what? At first I was too excited to start playing and testing the class, I didn't even notice or care. But from a design standpoint, it just doesn't make sense, and it just doesn't feel right.

I know it's too late, but If I had to make any recommendations right now, it would be that you start at 68 or 70 instead of 55. Is this some sort of way to just keep outland somewhat alive and not totally forgotten?

I'm not really sure I'm going to be super psyched about this aspect of the expansion when it does go live, simply because as all my friends and guildies are going to be off going to fight the fight in northrend, here I go trudging my way through outland by myself, for no apparent reason other than to gain levels, so I can get to the rest of the new content.

Leveling up new races I can understand. But this particular aspect of playing the death knight certainly does not feel very "heroic". It feels very out of place and disconnected from the theme and focus of wrath of the lich king.

I'm certainly not the only one that feels this way, am I?

Right now I feel like there just has to be some sort of super compelling quest/reason/purpose that would explain why we were started at a level that would make us have a desire to go to outland, other than to simply gain levels.

There is one thing I overlooked, though.

Remember, there are going to be hundreds of thousands of newbie death knights running around for the first few days/weeks/months.

If they could jump into northrend immediately, would you really want all these characters who might have been made with the intention of never even reaching level 71 competing with you for your quest mobs in the new northrend zones?

Eh, anyways, that being the case... I feel like there should probably be a pretty big final quest to send you to your faction or racial leader where you pledge your allegiance to them, get a big super fat XP bonus (since you still currently fall about 15% short of dinging 58 going through the starter quest line). Then, have them tell you to grow more powerful while bolstering the now abandoned forces in outland where you will hone your skills against Arthas's minions.

Something. There just needs to be something to fill that disconnect. A new player that may have had a 55, but never anything beyond still might not know to head to outland. I don't really seem to recall a quest line leading you from the major cities to blasted lands to clue people in, since it was the major focal point of the last expansion anyway. There didn't need to be one.


Bagarn71 said...

IMO a perfectly valid point. Why not atleast add some deathknight specific quests along the way until youre ready for Northrend. To sorta give you some reason for not going after the Lich King immediately.

Maybe even have some of the key spells quested , instead of trained at the respective level ? So that when you are going to Outland it is to piece together the last parts of your power or something?

Oscabo said...

I agree, and the only thing I can think of would be that Blizzard assumed people needed more time to familiarize themselves with a complete new class, rather than jumping in the fray and doing the 70-80 grind with people who know their class inside and out.

NaeBliz said...

i been reading your blog for some time now and i do really enjoy it since you come up with really good points and all.

i just feel that sometimes you just dont feel satisfied/never happy and i dont like that you say that Dw dont feel at all as a Dk thing,let ppl dw if they want to since you can choose if you want to dw too or not.

also arent you pushing it a bit now?
they dont need to make you start at lvl 55, none of the other classes are lvl 55 on start so be happy they decided to let you start as 55 for Dk and stop pushing it since 55 is fine.

Mike said...

I think it would be very simple to integrate a quest. Like;
You can't face the lich king alone, join up with your fraction from your passed life and fight with them against the lich king. With all the heroes venturing into northrend, they still need help with holding back the remaining burning legion in outland.

pretty simple IMO, rather then just get us into northrend right after ebon hold... there would be way to many deathknights who level to 80 then, instead of their mains. Most people I think will make a deathknight and go back to their main around level 61-63.

LePeR said...

Yea i never really thought about that till now.. i myself was just able to hit northrend and its pretty amazing so far. maybe instead of starting dk's off at 55 they could bump it to 65 and up the starting zone along with the content so it allows us level till 68 and off we go to northrend

Monte said...

As far as the reason why you start at level 55 goes: The lore is there. You died during the original raid of Naxxramas. IMO that's a perfectly valid explanation for the level. From a design standpoint, starting at level 55 is perfect. You have outlands to learn your class and get accustomed to it. If I were to choose to level my main first, I sure as hell wouldn't want some scrub DK who started at level 68 running any instance with me. I really liked leveling in Outlands on my DK, it gave me a lot of time to learn all the tricks of my class and so on. Outlands only took 24 hours played to get through. I don't know about you guys, but I plan to do a little 24 hour WoW session to hit 68. Heck, I imagine a good DK can hit level 80 before most peoples mains do.

Dreadhawk said...

I'm pretty sure they didn't make DKs start at 68 to stop the creation of the World of Deathknightcraft. There has to be something to stop 28931293812 Deathknights from being created day one. I tend to take the opposite few when it comes to DK starting level. I'm glad they didn't make the Deathknight start at 68. While I in no way want to level from level one, a part of me would be happy if they did. For those of you who are switching to DKs as your main it’s a good thing. It gives you a chance to prove your dedication (speed at which you level) to whatever guild you may want to join. For those who already have a guild/raid spot it’s a bit of chore. I know speed at which you level does not equal skill, but the first DK to 80 will be the first DK that guilds will accept into recruitment because they are the only ones to choose from. 8-)

Now for players with limited time this can really hurt them. This is why I don’t think DKs start at level one. Casual player would hit Northrend and no one would be doing any of the content. It would be like leveling a new alt now. Fifty-eight is probably right where it needs to be.

Brian said...

I agree with you Leiah, I will be "maining" a DK come expansion time, and I'm really not looking forward to grinding through Outland again after having done so 5 times already.

I would like to see an extra experience bonus for DKs in Outland, or a handful of DK-only quests that grant huge experience (like 30% of a level each) in the Outland zones to speed up the process.

Somehow Blizzard does need to account for the fact that brand new players can create a DK after hitting level 55, so I'm not sure "skipping ahead" 10 levels or more would flow very well.

It would be nice to attach an "extra" Outland-only leveling speed bonus to accounts with an existing level 70+ character.

DevilsAlias said...

Hey man,
Really love the blog and I've been reading and subscribed for around 3 or 4 weeks now. Good stuff, love the videos...
Anyway, not to be a jerk here, but I it was originally set at 70 but since they decided that they would lose out on a bunch of folks if they made it that you HAD to have a level 70 character to get a Death Knight. So they set it at 55. I think that is too low as well but as Blizzard seems committed to keeping old areas alive. I would assume this is part of that. Also with the new faster leveling from 60-70. I think those levels might be more fun now than it used to be. Besides maybe they will eventually create a Death Knight quest chain in Outland to get some cool item. Not that, that will help you or me. But I think having a WHOLE NEW CLASS really threw them for a loop and they have been scrambling to balance it and make it right. Hopefully everything will come out in the end. As my Death Knight will probably be my new Main.
See you in Northrend... :)

Leiah said...


You have a totally valid point. I sometimes seem to forget that I'm looking at the upcoming situation with a completely different perspective than, say, a newer player or even one that's still just excited to get their hands on the death knight class.

I imagine that 99% of the people that are really really wanting to make a DK their mains, aren't going to give a rat's ass about having to go through outland again. They'll be way too busy trying things out as they level, learning the class, revisiting old content and seeing how it compares with their new toy, much in the same way that I did.

Raj said...

I totally agree. The one thing I'm dreading with the xpac is having to catch up to my guild that will all be level 80 when I'm barely in my 70s. I understand trying to space out players in zones to keep mob availability up, but it's just a downside of the DK.

As mentioned, there needs to be a reason DKs are in Outland. Other than to grind out levels to catch up with your friends and guildmates.

Anonymous said...

i guess i can see your point from an RP point of view, but other than that it really doesn't seem very fair for everyone else. they gave us 55 levels for free, a free epic ground mount, a nice set of blues to start out in outlands, and a nice weapon.

i think that most people who have played the game before will be able to get through outlands content extremely quickly and reach northrend before most people get too far into the new content.

plus, they are going to reduce the amount of xp needed per level for outlands questing as shown here:

Anonymous said...

They just added a few new quests in to the DK starting area with this latest build. Now, after Light's Hope, you port yourself back to the Ebon Hold and fight a bunch of Scourge to clear it out. Then, Mograine gives you a letter and says "Go see Thrall" and you walk through a port to Orgrimmar. Everyone in the city spits on you and throws rotten fruit and threatens you. It's great. There is a really good connect between the intro and going out into the rest of the world now.

Ferenczys said...

Putting on my lore-nerd hat, here's the best I can come up with.

There is no question that, as a newly freed Death Knight, off-ing Arthas has got to be at the tippy-top of your to-do list. But hold, stay thy bloodthirsty hand a moment o' fallen one, and stay a while. Listen.

You can't beat him.

Arthas will destroy you. Worse, he will take what's left, and if there are enough pieces, string you together to fight once more for the Scourge, and your vaunted sense of ID will be like so much snow on a glacier -- unimpressive, and quickly forgotten.

But do not despair. In all of Azeroth there was only one who came close to beating him, but to find HIM, you'll have to venture to Outland. Perhaps if you can best Illidan and his lot, you'll stand a chance. Maybe even learn
something. Perhaps then, where Illidan fell to Frostmourne, you will prevail...

...and get to live out the rest of your undead existence reveling in the chilled remnants of your humanity.

Justin said...

Rumor speculates that pre-orders of wotlk will be able to create a death knight several weeks before the actual release. Thus giving new DK's time to catch up and gain the final 10 levels with everyone else.

Mintea said...

Justin, the fact is they are jsut rumours with no other reason for being in existance other than the rumour of another hopeful, hoping for something unlikely to happen and basing their non fact on nothing.

Michel said...

Good point, I have a lv 70 druid but I want to reroll DK. My 3 IRL buddy's have 70's and going to northrend right away, with me still lvling in outlands...
Maybe it's an idea to convert one of your characters to a DK, so my lv 70 druid will become a lv 70 DK.. That way you have to sacrifice something to gain insta lv 70.

Anonymous said...

This guy is just a whiner. He must have some kind of chemical imbalance in his brain that makes him have to dwell on the imperfections in this game and then ruin it for himself and other people. You have to lvl your DK just like everyones else has to lvl the other classes. I say stfu stop whining and play the damn game. :)If you keep yourself in whine mode, you can find enough things to whine about to become a very annoying person and ppl wont like you. :) peace. no offense :P