New accounts or existing accounts without any characters near max level are by design unable to curate their questing experience. If you are recruiting a brand new player, if you are yourself a brand new player, if you are a returning altaholic who has never previously gotten close to endgame, or if you are a veteran player starting over on a new account, you will need to plan ahead of time how you will gain access to Chromie time. The restrictions are non-intuitive and convoluted, so do yourself a favor and search for the in-game support article ahead of time.
TLDR Feedback for Blizzard
- Restrictions on Chromie Time are convoluted, poorly communicated, and frankly mystifying.
- Restrictions for new accounts are not obvious and not clearly communicated. Whatever gains you’re getting in terms of restricting bad actors, are you sure it’s outweighing the bad new player experience?
2/21/23 Original Post
I’m attempting to recruit a friend with zero prior WoW experience. My intent was to introduce her to WoW using a free trial, complete the basic intro campaign together, and then run through a bit of Pandaria until level 20. At that point I felt she would have been able to make an informed decision as to whether she wanted to buy the game and pay for game time to keep playing together. Personally I have fond memories of Pandaria and I feel it is a good representation of some of the best that WoW has to offer.
So off we went on our merry way! We completed Exile’s Reach, a Stormwind city tour, and started getting funneled in to Battle for Azeroth, so I had us hearth back and chat with Chromie to start our Pandaria experience. We immediately hit a wall. Chrome did not offer her any timewalking option. A lot of head-scratching and googling later we determined that she needed a level 60 character to unlock this option. So I asked her to use Class Trial feature to quickly meet that requirement.
That’s when I learned Class Trials are only available to accounts that own the base game and have game time. At this point, we were getting frustrated. We were having fun playing the game together, but I genuinely did not want us to play BfA (she had recently quit Skyrim because the gloomy atmosphere was just not a fun place to spend her gaming time; I worried BfA would be more of the same, and besides I personally greatly prefer Pandaria over BfA).
We decided to start throwing money at the problem. She bought the base game and subscribed. But she still couldn’t use the Class Trial feature.
In desperation, we then decided to have her create an Evoker to quickly meet the level 60 requirement. However, trying to speed a newbie from level 58 to 60 through the Evoker storyline with zero lore context while learning more advanced mechanics is less than fun, so we called it a night just before we hit 59. At this point she was clearly overwhelmed.
I later chatted with another WoW veteran about the experience and they were also flabbergasted and couldn’t offer any better advice on how to accomplish my goal. For an experienced player, Chromie time is just a given and Class Trials though we’ve never used them ourselves are always an option.
I slept on it and decided the game HAD to be bugged, so I started to submit a bug report. Come to find a support article I was only able to access through in-game Support with information that did not surface during all the initial googling and was not intuitive. You can ignore the level 60 requirement if you play through some of BfA. Evidently for new characters BfA has an “abbreviated” intro questline, which I wouldn’t have known as a veteran player since it looked pretty much the same as when I last ran it. To me it legit just seemed like we were being forced to level through the whole of BfA.
This whole experience has been convoluted and terrible and I’m not sure why it had to be this way.
And the saga continues…
We’ve learned that there is - again by design and not clearly communicated - a 24 hour lockout on certain features for new accounts, which is why she couldn’t use the Class Trial feature. So we waited and did that. We then did the BfA questlines up through “A Nation Divided”.
Still no Chromie Time option.
She created a new character, upgraded her Dragonflight game to heroic, and used the free boost on that character.
Still no Chromie Time option.
Are new players simply forced to play through BfA before they can experience any of the other WoW expansions? If so, I’m mystified as to why this would be the case.
We’ve been through 2 support tickets with several back-and-forths of canned responses (“did you try reading this support article?”, “sorry your friend needs to create this support ticket on their account before we can help.”, “did you try reading this support article?”).
It has finally occurred to us that what is most likely happening is that none of the work we’re doing to fulfill the requirements laid out in the support article is applying retroactively to existing characters.
So we rolled brand new characters last night. Fingers crossed when we make it out of our starting zone, in to Stormwind, and skip the tour, Chromie will finally give us the time of day.
No dice. We give up.