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World of Warcraft: Patch 8.1 Overview

The Tides of Vengeance will soon be upon us, as World of Warcraft developer Ion Hazzikostas update us on the future content of the next patch coming to Battle for Azeroth.

Tides of Vengeance will be stepping up the faction war going on right now, with the continuation of the war campaign for both the Horde and Alliance, with it being time for the Alliance to finally strike back. Incursions will be introduced as both factions begin to invade and try to conquer parts of the factions respective zones; these will play out much like Legion invasions which were a great way to level up your new characters and hopefully will also be the case once again. Also coming, with the faction wars escalating, is the continuation of the story to Varok Saurfang currently sitting out the war in the Stockades (an Alliance prison); more story for Tyrande and how she is dealing with the events of the burning of Teldrassil and finally more story of Vol’jin and his favourite urn. So pick up your banner and ride out for vengeance in the upcoming patch.

As the faction war continues, we will also see a new war front introduced – The Battle for Darkshore, which will focus on the Night Elves and Forsaken as they continue to battle it out after the Forsaken invaded Darkshore in the Battle for Azeroth pre-patch. We will be seeing new buildings that I hope will be Night Elf and Forsaken themed and also new equipment that does not feature in the current war campaign. This time around, the Horde will own the zone, and it will be the Alliance that build up contribution to invade and attempt to retake Darkshore from the Horde. Once again, the zone will be updated to accommodate max level characters and so will have max level rares and other features added to reflect this and I personally, would love to see the War front armour for our characters to represent the Night Elves’ armour for the Alliance and Forsaken themed armour for the Horde.

For those of you who enjoy the life of an explorer, then you are in luck with an update to island expeditions with two whole new island’s to explore: Jorundall – a Vykrul settlement, and a lost Gilnean city of Havenswood. New features will be added to island expeditions such as holdouts and azerite extractions so you can have a constant trickle of azerite income as you explore deeper. You can also find enemies sticking together in clusters rather than spreading out over the whole island because as they say… safety in numbers.

As you all know, the Horde and Alliance are really at each other’s throats at the moment and with the war campaign reaching new heights, it is only fitting the Alliance dare to try to finish this by launching an ‘all out attack’ on the city of Zuldazar to capture (or kill) King Rastakhan in the upcoming raid ‘Siege of Zuldazar’ (the name may yet change). This is a nine boss encounter that will be unique in that each faction will have a different experience inside the raid. The Alliance, as they are invading, will start at the docks and fight their way up to the pyramid in the middle of the city and break into it to face off against King Rastakhan. Whereas those who play the Horde will start of the north of the city and work their way over to come to King Rastakhan’s defense which will be the midpoint of the raid, then those of the Horde will push back to the docks and take the fight to the sea in a deadly battle with the Jaina Proudmoore. Once completed each faction may to talk to scouts that have been sent out to gather information on each other to gain access to the other 3 unique bosses you didn’t get a chance to fight before.

Following up on the Siege of Zuldazar will be a much shorter two boss raid named ‘Crucible of the Storms’, which will take place under Stormsong and try to uncover many dark secrets and maybe even sneak peek into the future showing that rising tensions between the Alliance and Horde are being fostered by something much more sinister. This raid will also come with extra supporting content to explain why you have chosen now to come, and to also help Horde players out who are not familiar with the story that Alliance players go through.

For me personally, a really nice feature that will be coming is the addition of heritage armour for the old races and not just the allied races. I always love details which define the different races, so first up to get these new armour sets will be Dwarf and Blood Elf players, and fear not you won’t have to level one of these races up (unless you don’t have one). As long as you already have a max level of the two you can start to obtain them as you explore your race and really get into what makes them the way they are.

As it’s a new patch there will also be many system improvements that are set out to improve game play and quality of life, such as the Champions of Azeroth reputation becoming account bound so once the reputation is unlocked on one character, it will be unlocked across all the rest of your characters to help catch you up with those. We can also expect to see a lot of faction restricted transmogs be lifted so you will be free to use those transmog items on characters without the reputation. Speaking of reputation, all character reputations gained will count towards the collect x amount of reputations achievement making it a bit easier to hit the big achievement exalted with 100 factions. Finally the new allied races will be coming! Zandalari Trolls and Kul Tiran humans are the next two to be added but not quite yet as you play through the events leading up to unlocking these allied races. Within the Siege of Zuldazar, your bonds with the two races will grow so we can expect to see them sometime after the raid is over, but on the reputation front they will not be adding in a new one, so all you will need to be is exalted with Zandalari Empire and Proudmoore Admirality. And finally, coming in the patch will be the very much expected class balancing, and new Azerite traits, a new pet battle dungeon taking place in Gnomeregan and new trade skill recipe for you to learn. We anticipate a lot more coming as well so keep an eye on our blog!

All this will be making its way to the PTR soon, so you will get a chance to test it out, see how it works, to see what you like and don’t like, and to get an early feel for the patch if you so want to. I am really looking forward to the new patch as I have enjoyed most of the Battle for Azeroth content so far, and I am set to enjoy what is coming in the future.

Photo & Video Credit: Blizzard Entertainment

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