Saturday, 25 April 2015

House Of Wolves Reveal I: The Reef and Upgrade Paths

Hey guys, just wanted to break down the major updates associated with the House of Wolves reveal on 22nd April which focused on the upgrade path for legendaries and exotics, material exchange and the Reef social area! If you guys want to watch the entire stream of the reveal, it's just above, but if you just want a fast run through, read on ahead (remember to click on any pictures to enlarge them).

The Reef

Okay, so first of all the Queen's Bay is open to anyone regardless of whether you bought the DLC. Some of the important NPCs present are as follows:

Petra Venj
Petra Venj: She will hand you quests and story missions, similar to Eris Morn from The Dark Below.  The Wanted bounties will rotate weekly and send you around the world hunting for some of the deadly creatures associated with the expansion. It was also mentioned at this point there is Queen's Wrath armour and that it will drop in the Prison of Elders activity. Some of her rewards upon ranking up include some fairly pink shaders and an awesome mosquito looking ship!

Vault: Shared vault space from the Tower so no need to switch around.

Postmaster: Again, shared postmaster.

Cryptarch: Yes, a new Cryptarch called Master Ives! Hopefully better than Rahool.

Troll 2.0

Dammnn, mechanical arms
Variks the Loyal: The only remaining member of the House of Judgement, and a fallen who still remains loyal to the Queen. This bad-ass dude will be our vendor for the Prison of Elders (PoE). Every week there will be one piece of armour and one weapon. These will change weekly with a set order similar to Iron Banner so it isn't RNG. Also cores obtained within Prison of Elders can be exchanged for a package called the Judgement's Chance which probably functions similar to a Cryptarch package but containing Prison of Elder's associated items. 

The PoE gear displayed so far was: Kellbreaker's gloves and Wolfslayer's Claw, a high-impact low RoF auto-rifle. Some of the perks seem to be new and raid specific. Judging by it, perhaps we're in store for a Shank boss in Prison of Elders. Also there seems to be 2 sets of Prison of Elder associated armour now, one Queens wrath type which will drop within the activity, and then the other which is vendor based from Variks.

Upon ranking, and obtaining other currencies from PoE you can exchange for more shaders and ships based on each of the Fallen Houses. It was also mentioned that PoE will change on a weekly basis and offer a new play style each run through with the focus being on replay value.

Vance: This mysterious hooded dude will be our emissary into the Trials of Osiris (ToO), the new PvP activity associated with HoW. ToO will be available from Friday to reset (Tuesday) every single week! Vance offers consumables which make a single win count as two, forgive one loss, or start with a win during the PvP activity. So it's fairly obvious that ToO will be about racking up as many wins in a row as you can and if you lose you're out. Based on the number of wins you get you'll get access to different tiers of rewards.

Xur: Deej, cryptically, mentioned that Xur may appear in the Reef. Whether that means he will appear twice at once (one in the Tower, one in the Reef) or just once throughout the two locations is yet to be known.

The Tower: Upgrade Paths and Exchange

Probably the bit I, and most other people, were excited about was the method of upgrading gear to maximum attack level (365) or light level (lvl 34).

Okay, so lets start with legendaries. ALL LEGENDARY armour and weapons can be upgraded via the "Ascend" node on the bottom left. Weapons and armour will NOT LOSE XP/PERK PROGRESS!! Now, apart from glimmer and some regular mats, ascension requires a new material called Etheric Light which will drop from Nightfalls, PoE, ToO and Iron Banner.

365 Vex...
Exotic items will require Exotic shards instead of Etheric light but possesses the same Ascend node. So Xur is no longer required for upgrading.

You've probably noticed by now that the new HoW gear possesses no damage or armour upgrade nodes, meaning that weapons will be 365 (raid quality) or 331 (other vendors) attack as soon as you buy them and the respective values for armour, requiring only ascension if the gear isn't end-game quality. So only perks will need to be levelled up, whether this means less XP required in total or the same spread across the perk nodes is yet to be seen. 

Rares and uncommon quality gear cannot be ascended to max level. 

I don't have time to explain why I'll be awesome now.
The Speaker: You can now exchange radiant, ascendant materials for their corresponding counterparts in terms of shards and energies as well as for motes of light and glimmer.  Here are the exchange rates with the desired item on the left, and the items required on the right.

1 Ascendant Energy: 1 Ascendant Shard, 50 glimmer

1 Ascendant Shard: 1 Ascendant Energy, 50 glimmer

1 Mote of Light: 2 Ascendant Shards

1 Mote of Light: 2 Radiant Shards

1 Radiant Energy: 1 Radiant Shard, 50 Glimmer

1 Radiant Shard: 1 Radiant Energy, 50 Glimmer

250 Glimmer: 1 Ascendant Shard

250 Glimmer: 1 Radiant Shard

The Gunsmith: All new HoW (non-raid) weapons have an additional node known as "Reforge Ready" which allows the gunsmith to reforge perks like Iron Banner! It only costs a nominal fee of one mote of light as well which synergises so well with the exchange system!

Thanks guys for reading this long post, the reveal has made me pumped for House of Wolves. I'll definitely be covering the future reveals! Write your views below and be sure to check out my post on all the House of Wolves weapons and armour revealed so far!

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