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Will Battle for Azeroth Expansion Affect WoW Esports?

Date Posted: November 15, 2017

Blizzard just announced a new Battle for Azeroth Expansion for its World of Warcraft game. The expansion adds new playable races and Heart of Azeroth artifact.

Another interesting feature of the expansion is the Warfront PvE mode. Does this mode have the potential to be a new esports event that Bitcoin sportsbook sites such as Arcanebet and Bet365 will cover? While the future of the expansion in the esports arena is yet to be seen, here are the details the World of Warcraft community can expect from Battle for Azeroth.

Expansion brings in new races and Heart of Azeroth

There are two noticeable features of the new expansion that can affect the WoW Arena esports matches:

  • New sub races
  • Heart of Azeroth

New Sub Races

Six new playable races are making its way to both the Alliance and Horde players.

  1. High Mountain Tauren
  2. Lightforged Draenei
  3. Void Elves
  4. Nightborne Elves
  5. Zandalari Trolls
  6. Dark Iron Dwarves

Players can access the new races by playing through quests. Once unlocked, they start out at level 20 and can reach the new level cap of 120. While players can buy a boost to instantly get to level 110, those who increase these races’ level from 20 to 110 will get a unique armor set called Heritage Armor.

The sub-races will have new cosmetic features such as the HM Taurens having new horn shapes and tribal tattoos. Apart from facial features, the new races have unique racial passives and abilities that are not found in the main races.

World of Warcraft introduces Battle for Azeroth expansion

Heart of Azeroth

An element of the Artifact Weapons from the Legion expansion is making its way to Battle of Azeroth. The Heart of Azeroth is a new system that unlocks the latent properties of a player’s armor.

The Heart of Azeroth is an amulet piece that can collect Azerite. Azerite is a new resource that players can collect from raids and dungeons. Collecting enough Azerite will unlock a bonus on a player’s armor.

The abilities that players can unlock are not randomized per armor. These are based on the rarity or power of the equipment. Essentially, powerful armors allow players to unlock powerful abilities with the Heart of Azeroth.  The armor abilities and new racial abilities can add a new dimension to Arena matches.

Warfront relives RTS vibes from Warcraft III

Battle for Azeroth is bringing back the same RTS experience as Warcraft III with its Warfront event. Warfront is a 20-player event, wherein players must gather resources, build buildings to train troops, take over enemy territory, and kill the commander of the opposing side.

Warfront is currently a PvE event. There are plans for a PvP version to come out in the future. At this time, it is still early to confirm if Warfront will become an esport event, let alone one that will have the same spotlight as Arena. Developers will be looking at balancing the event before releasing a PvP version.

Another major challenge is the 20-player cap. This will make Warfront an expensive investment for esports sponsors in which they need to have 20 pro players for the matches.

Regardless, there is still a chance that a Warfront World Champion will become a reality in the feature. This includes a large demand for the sport and a low minimum player count of at least five to participate in the event.