Rearranging and Removing Portals


(Kaivax) #1

As we read most everything posted here (and elsewhere) about next week’s content update, we can’t help but be impacted by the subject of transportation portal removal. It’s a subject that’s approaching 5000 replies in one thread alone, and the question raised there, repeatedly, has been, “why?” Here’s the answer to that question.

From the beginnings of World of Warcraft, game designers have had a number of guiding principles. Sometimes these notions change quickly, and sometimes they evolve slowly, but a few guiding principles have remained more or less the same throughout WoW’s history. One such lodestar has been “don’t overuse portals between locations in the world”. Too many eliminations of the distances between places can diminish a sense of the world having a meaningful size.

Of course there’s an equal and opposite design consideration—“don’t make it too inconvenient to get from most places to most other places”. Some amount of convenience is vital. Not every visit to a wondrous landscape is your first. We know when it’s your 100th visit, you don’t want the flight over to be the bulk of your time spent. And of course, some players have chosen to play as Warlocks or Mages specifically because those classes offer unique means of transport.

With new expansions, we’ve made a tradition of removing some of the portals from the previous expansion’s cities. The goal with that is to encourage transportation flow through newer places where players are more likely to interact with other players. We neglected to do that initially following Legion (and we never did that following Mists of Pandaria for various reasons), but we feel that we should have. We’re correcting that now.

Boralus and Dazar’alor will continue to offer portals to a full range of capital cities, as well as to Silithus. The portals to Cataclysm zones will remain intact, and many other modes of transportation, such as Dalaran Signet Rings, Karazhan’s ring, the Timeless Isle trinket, Coordination Cloaks, and boats and zeppelins between many regions, will all be retained and functional.

However, we’ve seen how updates to the game can leave the means of accessing different areas feeling increasingly chaotic. For example— today if you go to the Cleft of Shadows in Orgrimmar, you’ll find it dotted with portals in a way that almost looks sporadic. We’re cleaning that up, and we see this as an opportunity to consolidate a lot of travel into a consistent venue with a consistent look and feel, and room for future growth when needed.

We’ve processed a lot of feedback on this, especially feedback about specific locations that feel like they’re going to become disproportionately inconvenient to reach, and we’ve followed that feedback through to the conclusion that you’re seeing on the PTR. We believe that the numerous remaining means of quick access in the game make most locations quite reachable.

If there are any specific locations that feel as though they’re about to become unreasonably inaccessible, we’re certainly open to adding additional means of travel in the future.


Stop removing portals
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Classes with unique mode of transport! A request to return Aspect of the Cheetah and Pack
Stop removing portals
With the loss of portals
Please fix past expansions
List of features in WoW that make the world feel smaller (Reddit xPost)
Classic communities opinion on retails Portal situation?
Stop removing portals
Professions, Portals, and Player Agency
Stop removing portals
New patch yet we're losing things
Stop removing portals
Portals? Where did they go?
Classic Content Plan
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Stop removing portals
Whats the first thing you're gonna do once 8.1.5 launches?
Does anyone actually like the portal room honestly?
They're adding more portals
Seriously, put the portals back
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General Consensus on 8.1.5?
General Consensus on 8.1.5?
#2

I just hope that one day Blizzard can stop making random changes that aren’t needed. Many of us have a hard time believing most of you even play your own game as changes like this, the bugs, and the overall quality of the stuff that goes live.

These changes make no sense.


#3

Worst decision ever. Unsubbed.

To everyone: vote with your wallets!


(Lothain) #4

He just… explained why they make sense.

You may not agree, and you are entitled to that (I myself disagree with the removal), but the argument exists.


(Soulprison) #5

What makes no sense to me is the idea of making us travel though areas that are no longer being supported. Anything beyond the current expansions areas are useless outside of leveling.

You guys want to make the world feel large again, but give us zero reason to explore and visit that world. So what’s your answer? Just make traveling through it painful. Yea, I’m just not buying this. This fits right into the making people stay logged in longer for your shareholder metric.


(Kiwî) #6

The major one I think should be addressed is Caverns of TIme. There isn’t even an Inn there that you can set your hearthstone to. Farming Dragon Soul for the 3 mounts that drop there can have 10s of hours of travel time added from its portal being removed.


#7

Now we have people threatening to unsub over portals?

Please unsub and leave already. We’re tired of hearing it.


#8

Thank you for the update. However, myself and others are curious on why Blizzard focuses on random changes like this, when there are much more important matters such as class design/balance, M+ dungeon imbalance, etc. that need attention.


(Crosse) #10

Given the current crap state of the game, it was a bad choice to make it crappier.


#11

Different teams handle class balance, class design, M+, yadda yadda yadda. These portal rooms have probably been being worked on in the background for months. Don’t go to the dishwashers to complain about how the food tastes …derp.


#12

I get that you might want to funnel people through specific zones. but seriously removing the legion portals under dalaran altogether is just silly especially when you look at the current state of M+ keys and dungeon balance. The portals under the zones make sense. what doesn’t make sense is the portal to pandaria being jade forest and legion being boralus. Why??


(Bobbydígital) #13

i don’t think the complaint is that the locations were unreachable without the portals, just inconvenient

your post suggests that you’ve heard that people do not like the change, and are convinced that these places are still “quite reachable”

so what kind of feedback would you like? the kind this forum has given was that the portals were fine as, blizzard decided it wasn’t.

what kind of middle ground can be expected? what guarantee do we have that this is in good faith?

for portal locations: how about one to the docks because someone decided it was fun to fly down there. was it the same guy who decided to give us a mission table but no way to purchase troops?

that type of thing really makes me question if you guys play this game.


(Aehl) #14

Too many eliminations of the distances between places can diminish a sense of the world having a meaningful size.

This is absolutely false. Im sorry but NO. Not true at all.

I am in an MMO right now that uses portals extensively, FAR FAR more than WOW does, and it is both workeable and useful. The devs have no intention of removing any of it.

It works in a massive scale…and they ALSO dont approach flight as a problem, but part of a solution. They design content around flight, and the portals. It all works seamlessly…so I dont see this conclusion as real at all.

I disagree with all of it…and what i am seeing here is the same kind of “rationale” used to gate flight. Kaivax, please…LISTEN…this is not a good idea.

This is not what people want. You have a 5000 post thread as proof.

With new expansions, we’ve made a tradition of removing some of the portals from the previous expansion’s cities.

And gated flight along with it, making travel tedious and long.

The goal with that is to encourage transportation flow through newer places where players are more likely to interact with other players

Again, not so. I dont interact with people when I travel the same way I dont stop to wave at every car that passes me on a road.

Boralus and Dazar’alor will continue to offer portals to a full range of capital cities, as well as to Silithus.

Wheres the one to the docks?

We’re cleaning that up

And removing portals that dont need to be removed.

If there are any specific locations that feel as though they’re about to become unreasonably inaccessible, we’re certainly open to adding additional means of travel in the future.

In a phrase? Best solution?

Relocate, dont remove.

P.S What Karazhans ring??? Ive never heard of this.

Edit: oh yeah I see, you have to do an entire Nightbane run to get it


(Bashcutter) #15

So goodbye Dalaran Portals?


#16

My entire gripe with this change is that you’re removing convenience without actual reason and trying to justify it with “oh the world needs to be viewed as bigger”. The reality is nobody cares about Mists of Pandaria when you’re not leveling there anymore because it isn’t current zones and for people like myself who dumped over 100 days /played into Mists of Pandaria and not counting the time post MoP to hunt world bosses and get to Throne of Thunder, this change feels like and basically is an attempt to make my travel time longer to move around these locations which is your new “measurable success metric”, the reality is forcing people to do this kind of stuff causes people to quit sooner and not stay subbed longer. The same goes for Legion, there is ZERO reason that the portal for ‘Legion’ is set in Azsuna, there is no reason for this absolutely obscure location. The reality is NO ONE CARES ABOUT THE SIZE OF THE WORLD IN OLD ZONES, people care about how small the world feels in CURRENT ZONES, NOT OLD ONES.


(Verdre) #17

Who did you talk to? Certainly not the folks in the mega thread.

The 5000 post thread had a CM speak up for a short time then shut up. Where is the communication? Where are blues talking WITH us and not talking AT us?

We’re waiting for genuine discussion. We haven’t seen it. Just “this is the way it is.” Nothing more.


(Spanko) #18

Holy crap, you guys are so out of touch with this change. Why are you so stubborn? This thread is going to get 5,000 more posts and you’ll have to address it again with another poor excuse? The players vocally said that they don’t like this change. Why do you insist on making us angry?


(Knollix) #19

So in other words, “Screw you guys, you’re whining about nothing.”

Really glad you folks are listening to the community. I feel really respected and appreciated as a customer.

BfA is rough and I’ve been on the cusp of unsubbing, but I do mount runs and transmog runs every week and it gives me something to do so I’ve stuck around. Congratulations finding one of the few ways to suddenly make that a worse proposition, make me spend more time doing the little content you’ve kept me interested in.

I hope down the line you guys can stop tripping over your own feet and actually start making changes that help me enjoy this game again. It’s been a long time.


(Portergauge) #20

This doesn’t explain why the portals removed weren’t added to Stormwind and Orgrimmar. What is the reason for why there is no Caverns of Time portal in either?


#21

We don’t care they were sporadic in location. It was fine the way it was. All you literally had to do was add portal locations to either the map or the guard help dialogue. No one wanted this crap change and there were plenty of easy work arounds that required less time and effort.