By perculia on 2012/05/08 at 2:51 PM Pacific
By Ashelia on 2012/05/08 at 8:59 AM Pacific
We recently added account-level changes to achievements in World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria, and there’s still a lot of work left before we’re done. The plan here is to illustrate the intent behind our design, which should in turn help you figure out the answers to many of your questions.
Overall, we never want you to play Character A instead of Character B because of achievement concerns. If Character A had the Violet Proto-Drake, then you might not play Character B. If Character A was only one holiday away from the Violet Proto-Drake, then you may not play Character B. If Character A had completed most of the raid achievements from Dragon Soul, you may not want to bring Character B for one fight and miss out on the achievement. Having alts is cool and working on achievements is cool, but we don’t want the two systems to work against each other.
This goal is paramount and drives everything else. If we allowed you to earn extra achievement points from completing an achievement on two different characters, then you might only want to play the character with the most points and you’d feel like you had to grind through all the achievements with every alt, thus defeating the purpose of having account-level achievements.
Most achievements are account-wide
This means you only earn the points once. If you have earned an achievement on one character, you can see it on all your characters. However, and this is important, you will still see the achievement toast (the pop-up notification) if a second or subsequent character completes the achievement. We think it’s still important to recognize milestones like reaching level 80, maxing out a profession, or killing a raid boss for the first time. It's fun to have everyone congratulate you when you get the toast. Nonetheless, this will just be a new character of yours completing the achievement that you’ve already earned on your account. You won’t double up on points.
Most criteria are not account-wide
If you start an achievement on one character, you can't then finish the achievement on another (there are exceptions, so please keep reading). We didn't think it made sense for one character to get level 60 and another to get level 20 and then see the "level 80" achievement toast. If you start to explore Thousand Needles on one character, you’ll probably want to finish that achievement on the same character.
Some achievements are "meta achievements."
These are achievements that require you to get other specific achievements. An infamous example is "What a Long, Strange Trip It's Been." These achievements generally ARE account-wide. If one character earned Noble Gardener and another character earned The Flame Warden, then your account would get Long Strange Trip. (Otherwise it would be weird: it would look as if you had the sub-achievements, but you wouldn't have the meta-achievement). Even though you need Explore Thousand Needles on one character, all of your characters can contribute to Explore Kalimdor.
A very few achievements are account-only.
There are two categories of account-only achievements. One is achievements that are not possible to earn on one character. If we made an achievement to level every class to level 90, it would be account-only. (I'm not sure we will, but it's a good example.) The other category are achievements that are just brutal to complete on one character (and you’d never want to do for multiples), such as 2500 daily quests or 250K honorable kills. In these cases, the cumulative work of all your characters on those criteria will count.
We hope that rewards granted from achievements (pets, mounts, titles, and tabards) will be shared at the account level.
I'm not going to promise this yet, because a lot of magic has to happen for that to work, but it's our intent. We have discussed having a character level requirement for some rewards, so that your level-2 gnome couldn’t walk around with the “Defender of a Shattered World” title just because your level-90 shaman earned it. If the gnome made it to level 80, though, you could proudly show off your title. You also won’t be able to use a faction-specific pet, mount, or title on the wrong faction. The achievement wouldn’t go away -- you just wouldn’t be able to show it off on that character. There are probably additional exceptions and details we’ll find as we dig deeper into the system.
This is the kind of system that will evolve over time, and we don’t think this has to be the way achievements work forever. As beta players start experimenting with it and offering feedback, I am certain that we will end up making even more changes.
Greg “Ghostcrawler” Street is Lead Systems Designer for World of Warcraft. He loves you very, very much. Yes, you.
By perculia on 2012/05/07 at 6:21 PM Pacific
“Never take a man’s hand, Son…” King Archibald Greymane said, his strong frame now a muddied silhouette against the fading glow of twilight. “’Tis always better to stand tall on your own. It is what separates the great from the meek.”
The sky above Aerie Peak beckoned Kurdran Wildhammer like the distant glow of a campfire on a frigid winter night. After twenty long years trapped on the hellish world now known as Outland, he was home. Never once had he regretted joining the Alliance expedition to battle the orcish Horde on its homeworld, but over the harsh years there the longing to see this sky had burned in his heart.
"We've done a security sweep of the upper floors in sector 17, sir. The place seems fairly untouched since our, uh, departure. Granted, everything stinks of trogg...." "Mmmm, yes—that delightful mixture of mold, mange, and sour monkey. Puts one off of his lunch, I know."
She could have been asleep. The night elf's features were perfectly relaxed except for her mouth, which frowned slightly as though her dreams were not pleasant ones. Her body was intact and largely unharmed, unlike many of the others they had seen in recent days. Tyrande Whisperwind knelt by the corpse to take a closer look. There was bloody kelp in the dead woman's hair and she reeked of the sea and slow rot. Dead several days. She had probably been one of the first victims of the Cataclysm, swept away by the flood. No priestess of Elune could bring her back now.
Something had awakened King Varian Wrynn from a deep sleep. As he stood motionless in the gloom, the faint patter of a distant dripping sound echoed off the walls of Stormwind Keep. A feeling of dread washed over him, for it was a sound he'd heard before.Varian moved cautiously to the door and pressed his ear against the burnished oak. Nothing. No movement. No footfalls. Then, as if from far away, the dull and muffled hum of a crowd cheering from somewhere outside the castle. Did I oversleep today's ceremonies?
The Seat of the Naaru's soaring energies inspired inner peace from the most bloodthirsty of warrior pilgrims, awe from even the most jaded of Azeroth's inhabitants. The figure floating before the Seat had long taken comfort from this column of Light. Velen looked out from his meditation chamber, seeking insight... in all the connections, great and small, where he might perceive the lines of the future. For the past several months, those lines had increasingly felt fragmented.
You disappoint me, Garrosh.Try as he might, the memory of those words just would not die. It did not matter how many times he heard the proud shouts of “Welcome, Overlord!” as he passed through Agmar’s Hammer, or how long he stood in the ruins before the Wrath Gate and stared into the enchanted flames that still burned there. Even the strike of his blades against the beasts or Scourge that dared oppose him only provided temporary respite. All the hot, sharp splatter of blood against his face could not drown out that voice. The moment he returned to the road, he heard each word spoken in his head with every fall of his great wolf’s paws against the snow.
Hey, pal. Trade Prince Gallywix here. You’re holding this book in your hands because you wanna be like me. Who wouldn’t? There ain’t a goblin alive more powerful and dangerous than me. I can give you everything you need to succeed.But first, a friendly legally binding warning just for you.
The young troll crouched in the rain, staring ahead to where the path faltered in the face of the jungle’s dense undergrowth. The sunlight could not penetrate that foliage, nor could the breeze. That part of the island was called First Home, and nobody went there besides shadow hunters and fools.Vol’jin was no shadow hunter.
A rickety old cart trundled down the path toward the Great Gate, where a small patrol waited to guard it on its way to the distant zeppelin tower. There, the water it carried would be distributed to the orc settlements around Durotar, the land hit hardest by the recent drought. The young kodo pulling the cart moved with the languid pace of a well-traveled routine, cresting the hill before disappearing from sight.
Sylvanas Windrunner drifts in a sea of comfort, physical sensations replaced by the purity of emotion. She can grasp bliss, see joy, hear peace. This is the afterlife, her destiny. The eternal sea in which she found herself after she fell defending Silvermoon. She belongs here. With each recollection, her memory of this place palls. The sound grows distant; the warmth, cooler. The vision takes on the pallor of a half-remembered dream. But with horrific clarity, the memory always ends the same: Sylvanas's spirit is wrenched away. The pain is so intense it leaves her soul forever torn. The grinning face of Arthas Menethil, with his lopsided smile and dead eyes, leers at her as he pulls her back into the world. Violates her. His laughter—that hollow laugh—the memory of it makes her skin crawl!
The surface of Lor'themar's desk had ceased to be visible underneath all the paper piled on top of it. Reports, missives, orders, and inventories teetered precariously in stacks he had long since stopped trying to organize. All of them were related to the short yet brutal war over Quel'Danas and the Sunwell. None of them was currently on his mind.
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