Thanks to Fans, You Can Fly Through WoW's New Area, But Only if You Earn It
Patch 6.2 introduces a set of goals you'll have to meet before taking to the skies in Draenor.
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In response to player feedback, Blizzard will bring the ability to fly to World of Warcraft's Draenor areas, including the new Tanaan Jungle. Before you can do so, however, you'll need to fulfill certain requirements.
The upcoming 6.2 patch--a major update that brings with it ship-building, a new raid, and a new area called Tanaan Jungle (pictured below)--also adds an achievement called Draenor Pathfinder. By earning this, you'll earn a new mount (a rylak, the Soaring Skyterror) and, once a subsequent patch is released, unlock the ability to fly in Draenor.
Unlocking this achievement will not be an easy task, however. You'll need to explore all of Draenor's zones, collect 100 treasure in Draenor, reach revered status with the three new Tanaan Jungle reputations, and earn two other achievements: Draenor Loremaster and Securing Draenor. In other words, you'll have to extensively play through Draenor's content before earning the right to fly through it.
Flying has been the standard way of navigating WoW's world for years now, ever since it was added in the Burning Crusade expansion in 2007. At the time, players weren't able to fly through the game's two original continents, but that ability was added in Cataclysm, making it so that nearly the entire game could be flown through until Draenor.
Blizzard has talked in the past about how it decided to prevent players from flying in the new areas because of the way it impacted players' experience with the game. "While there was certainly convenience in being able to completely explore the world in three dimensions, that also came at the expense of gameplay like targeted exploration, like trying to figure out what's in that cave on top of a hill and how do I get up there," lead designer Ion Hazzikostas recently told Polygon.
He also said that flying "made the world feel in many ways much smaller" before stating that it wouldn't be added to Draenor and wasn't a given for future expansions.
This didn't sit well with many fans, prompting today's blog post from Hazzikostas announcing the new achievement prerequisite for flying in Draenor.
"We believe this strikes the right balance between ensuring ground-based content lives up to its full potential, while providing players who've already fully experienced Draenor's outdoor world extra freedom to 'break the rules,'" he said. "This also provides a general blueprint going forward for content to come. Players will explore new and undiscovered lands from the ground, and then once they've fully mastered those environments--a notion that continues to evolve with each new expansion--they can take to the skies and experience the world from a new vantage point."
Patch 6.2 does not yet have an exact release date, but it's currently on public test realms and is expected to go live in the coming weeks.