"It's Legion's fault": Asmongold realizes why he didn't like Battle for Azeroth and Shadowlands expansions for World of Warcraft

Asmongold weighs in on Blizzard
Asmongold weighs in on Blizzard's development strategy for WoW expansions (Image via Sportskeeda)

Veteran MMORPG Twitch streamer Zack "Asmongold" reacted to Preach Gaming's in-depth video at Blizzard's World of Warcraft headquarters with a one-on-one interview with game director Ion Hazzikostas, who revealed parts of how features for the new expansions are developed.

Over the course of the video, Asmongold gradually realized the reason content expansions Shadowlands and Battle of Azeroth were "sh*t" was because Blizzard was basically working with feedback from players who liked some of Legion's new mechanics back in the day:

"So it's Legion's fault that BfA and Shadowlands had that sh*t in it? Oh f*ck."

Asmongold gives his two cents about Blizzard's development strategy for World of Warcraft expansions

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While watching the 72-minute-long video from Preach Gaming titled A NEW Era for WoW - Inside Blizzard HQ, Asmongold had some important realizations about the development processes of the expansions. Following is the portion from the interview with the game's director that ultimately led the OTK Founder to criticize the developers.

While discussing new features in the Legion expansion, Hazzikostas had this to say:

"As you mentioned, there were definitely some missteps with the garrisons. But, I think, moving ahead into Legion, it was like, 'Okay, obviously we don't want something that pulls you out of the world.' The Class Haul and some lose ways with its Mission Table with some of its trappings and..."

Asmongold interjected the video at this point to praise Blizzard for these features:

"Oh, that was great. Everything they did about that was good."

He then unpaused the video:

"... customizations was a little bit of a successor to the garrison system... And it's important to bear in mind that we are planning a couple of expansions in advance. You know, we knew what the feature set for Shadowlands' going to be well before Battle for Azeroth came out."

Explaining further, the World of Warcraft director further revealed that the subsequent features that came in Shadowlands and Battle for Azeroth were a direct continuation of the features that were supposedly well-received by fans during the Legion expansion:

"A lot of that (features added to expansions after Legion) was the ongoing outgrowth of what seemed to be a very successful experiment in Legion. Legion was very well-received overall, very popular overall, people had nothing but praise for its systems... "

Asmongold clearly did not agree with the statement about people liking these things in particular and paused the video to give a long, incredulous stare at the chat window. He kept up that mocking smile as Ion Hazzikostas continued to say how that seemingly "positive" feedback made them go down a specific development path:

"Okay, so this is a great formula for modern expansions that we..."

This is where Asmongold realized that the features that came in with the Legion expansion were the root cause of the issue that, in the eyes of the veteran World of Warcraft player, ultimately led to the creation of two bad expansions.

However, the game director did admit that fans had gotten fed up with that very mechanic towards the end of the expansion cycle, but it was too late to remove it from the next update. Preach Gaming gave a very good example to showcase how this worked in real life by comparing the two different systems implemented in separate expansions in the past that were quite similar.

"The best example here would be Artifact Power and Azerite Power. Ion mentioned that during Legion, they took a risk with Artifact Power, and it was met very, very well by the players. Battle for Azeroth is already in production, this system is going to be implemented."

He further went on to say:

"It is not until the end of Legion that people start getting annoyed with Artifact Power, 'Oh no, our next expansion has exactly the same system in place. With more twists and turns involved in it."

Asmongold expressed serious concern over a production pipeline that forces the makers of World of Warcraft to do such a thing:

"I dislike the idea that because of a production pipeline, it's okay to have obvious problems like this that continue. I think this is a problem in design. You can't say things like, 'Oh, because of our production pipeline, we're not able to make changes on things for like three years.' This is ridiculous."

Fan reactions to the clip

Here's how the streamer's community reacted to the clip:

Fan reactions under the YouTube video (Image via Asmongold Clips/YouTube)
Fan reactions under the YouTube video (Image via Asmongold Clips/YouTube)
Fan reactions under the YouTube video (Image via Asmongold Clips/YouTube)
Fan reactions under the YouTube video (Image via Asmongold Clips/YouTube)

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For those interested in watching the original video, they may find it on Preach Gaming's official YouTube channel.