This evening Blizzard held a World of Warcraft Legion Q&A stream and the subject of pristine servers was raised. Not to be confused with legacy/vanilla servers, these are what Blizzard mentioned when the whole vanilla petition debate began.
Pristine servers would involve removing character transfers, heirloom gear, character boosts, Recruit-A-Friend bonuses, WoW Token, access to cross-realm zones, and group finder. During today’s Q&A it sounds like the less extreme option pristine servers is not really on the cards. World of Warcraft Assistant Game Director Ion Hazzikostas had this to say:
“The Pristine server idea was one that we floated as a general idea. It’s not aimed at the core legacy audience that wants the specific experience of old talent trees, the pace of the game, and the quest line that sends you across two continents, and all of that stuff. That’s not what pristine server would aimed at. It’s more a question of the social aspects of the game, the need for community, the speed at which you progress through the content.
“Those are things we are actually focusing on the regular game and I don’t know if that’s something that requires its own type of server to capture that. There’s some changes to level up experience we’ve already been making, I think there’s some we can continue to make in the future to improve the quality of that experience for a new player. Philosophically I think we want to make the experience one that lets you take your time and enjoy and have a well-paced experience if that’s what you want, but we can still allow people who want to rush through it the option to do that rather than have it be the default state for everybody.
“We know that dungeon finder, raid finder, all these tools make content super accessible, they also diminish some of the needs to form social ties to engage in cooperative gameplay and things like mythic dungeons and other pieces of content that aren’t necessarily hardcore in terms of challenge, but encourage the cooperation and community play are things that allow us to reintroduce that.
“It’s something we continue to talk about but obviously none of these ideas are dead or discarded. I wouldn’t expect to see anything on pristine servers in the very near future right now our focus is Legion.”
It’s quite clear that moving any focus away from the upcoming Legion expansion is not going to happen which means that should Blizzard say yes to World of Warcraft vanilla servers, they would not be appearing any time soon either.
Watch the full stream below.