As we eagerly awaited the release of Dragonflight, my friend group discussed the new profession system with a lot of enthusiasm. Every profession got a major rework in the new expansion designed to increase their complexity and usefulness, and we were all excited to find out what kind of new gear we’d have access to. As a life-long engineer, no one was more excited than me. Naively, I thought Dragonflight would finally make engineers feel like a valuable team member. And while I have been able to craft more loot for my friends than ever before, I still feel like the weak link in the group.
Engineers have long been considered the selfish profession in WoW. Blacksmiths, tailors, and leatherworks can make weapons and armor, while enchanters, and jewelcrafters can enhance gear with powerful effects. Alchemists make potions and buffs that are essential for raiding, and everyone loves scribes thanks to their glyphs and powerful Darkmoon decks. Engineers, meanwhile, make little toys and bombs. They can make some gear, but most of it can only be used by engineers. If you want to be a useful teammate, engineering is the one profession you should never pick. And if you want to make money as an engineer, just forget about it.
And yet, it’s the only job I ever want to do. As a Hunter, I love the class fantasy of tinkering to craft my own hi-tech guns and scopes. I also love the engineer mounts, like the helicopter-style Flying Machine and the transforming Mecha-Mogul MK2. I know it’s a selfish profession, but engineers get to do so much cool stuff. I could make a lot more money selling herbs on the auction house, but if you don’t love what you do then what’s the point, right?
I had a lot of hope that Dragonflight was going to make me a more valuable teammate, and in some ways it has. Profession tools are a new equippable gear type that every profession can use in order to enhance their skill, and engineers can create a wide range of profession tools. One of the first things I did at the start of Dragonflight was craft helmets and satchels for all my mining friends, fabric cutters for my tailor, and Draconium Fisherfriends for all of my fisher…friends. This was the first time I got to have the satisfaction of crafting gear for people that actually need it, and I rode that high all week. Unfortunately, I haven’t had many more opportunities to be useful.
While my friends are making jewels, weapons, and potions for each other, I’ve mostly been slamming greasy gears together hoping to discover new cogwheel recipes begging my group to use my optional reagents in their recipes. I check the crafting order menu throughout the day and it's always barren. No one needs fireworks, bombs, or scopes, and the only really useful things – like tinkers and goggles – can only be used by engineers anyway. Until I unlock the high level profession equipment, I don’t have much else to offer anyone but myself.
There are a few cool items engineers get this expansion. The S.A.V.I.O.R bot that raises a raid party from the dead will practically be a requirement for high-level raiding, and the portable crafting benches are definitely useful – though expensive. I’m excited about the little robot duck companion, Quack-E, and the epic gun, Ol’ Smoky, gives me a good reason to farm raids. Still, engineering doesn’t feel as useful as the other professions, and at this point I’m afraid it never will.
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