I’ve been mulling about with this thought for months now, since BFA started showing us the seemingly unfinished and counter intuitive replacement for our Legion artifacts, Azerite.
Or, How to fix Azerite. if you need a more clickbait thread name. Onward to the meat of this.
All traits on azerite gear would be unlocked and selectable. Treated as if all current Azerite reqs where met from the current system.
Heart of azeroth levels influenced the traits effectiveness.
For instance, we take 8.0’s average level and consider that the 75% mark for power from traits(100% of their current effectiveness ideally in the standard system). In turn we then gain an additional set % for however many levels we reach beyond that establish baseline from 8.0’s average.
I feel this would revert the Azerite apathy that people currently have in regards to engaging with the systems as a whole, while also allowing blizzard to create a positive reward loop for their new system.
This could lead to advantages for both hardcore and casual players:
This system also means that the need for AK simply vanishes, you could easily just let the people who want to be on the bleeding edge of damage and potential keep grinding away at it.
This removes the failure condition (higher item level but lower dps gear) that current azerite gear creates by restricting previously open traits from older gear due to the heart level requirements.
Eases the burden of players who want to fully realize their class and its various specs by making the seemingly desired multiple sets solution far less stressful. In some cases allowing players to look at duplicate ilvl gear as a potential for alternative playstyles rather than garbage to be scrapped.
It seems clear to me that the developers have no plans to reinvent their wheel here for the systems, like putting the traits on the heart instead of the gear. So while there are far more amazing things you could do in the place of azerite, I wanted to humor thoughts on how to fix it.
If we can’t have a fully realized replacement system, the best choice is to simply try to improve what we currently have. So far, humble opinion here, it feels like most of the azerite system changes have been very reactionary to the backlash, and still don’t address most of the core issues with the system.
Legion was a wonderful expansion, too wonderful in regards to class functionality. It felt like at the end of 7.2 they finally realized what they could do with the game by allowing characters to be fully realized without much effort, but reward those that put in more effort with the stacking damage bonus for each artifact level they gained. Combined with the variance of legendary items (and the much needed acquisition vector they added) it felt like in some cases you could really play a different way and still contribute. It wasn’t perfect, but it felt better than what we currently have.