Now, a side aspect of this discussion is the question, whether Blizzard should spend more money on WoW. Some argue that Blizzard is better off by accepting a declining WoW (maybe not 5% every few months) and hoping that Titan will replace it. I think they shouldn't do this. In fact, I think they don't intend to do this. Otherwise the latest expansion, that was intended to revamp the entire early game, didn't make any sense.
However, some people question whether WoW would even profit from additional investments. That's what this blog post is about. Is it possible to hire additional employees to work on WoW and what would they do?
The answer can be found on the official Blizzard forums: (1) (2) (3)
I am going to quote the best posts from there. That will make this blog entry very long. .. Very, very long!
During Classic there were 11 major content patches after release (release version was 1.1)
Lets compare this what Blizzard did in Classic to what they are working on now:
WoW is released. 1.1
Dire Maul, world bosses Kazzak and Azuregos 1.3
Honor System (1.4)
WSG and AV (1.5)
ZG and Arathi Basin (1.7)
4 more world bosses (1.8)
AQ war effort and AQ20/40 (1.9)
Weather and dungeon 2 set and questline (1.10)
Naxxramas and scourge invasion 1.11
Cross realm battlegrounds 1.12
With the exceptions of 1.8 and 1.10 they all have major content. Even if you discount 1.8 and 1.10 (though they still had class reviews which were major things by themselves) that still leaves 9 major content patches on top of levels 1-60 content release content.
I think everyone who reads these forums (devs/mods included) will freely admit that this is not the "golden age" of World of Warcraft. That something has been lost since shortly after the release of Wrath of the Lich King. A sense of loss that has only been increasing exponentially since 4.01 hit live servers. All we want is someone (or more preferrably a group of someones) in power to stand up and say "Yes, we understand what has happened to the game and we are doing something about it." "Yes,
did not work out as well as we had hoped, this is what we are thinking about how to change it." "Yes, the end game for both casual and raiders alike has gotten stale and is what we are going to add to the game in order to give players more choice in activities."
I know Blizzcon is 4 months away, but quite frankly that is going to be too late for a lot of us. There are multiple MMOs coming out in the next 12 months. Multiple chances for even the loyal WoW players to say goodbye. We are looking for a reason to stay, now is the time to step up to the plate and give us one. (And please do not step up and say "Firelands in 2 weeks with 1 raid and daily quest hubs as that reason.) We are looking for an overall plan to fix things, to give both raiders and casual players alike new and interesting ways to enjoy the game. Right now the game has become a 1 trick pony for a lot of us. We want more tricks.
It does feel like they are slowing down with WoW development.
It feels like cookie cutter patches raid/dungeon new arena season. It's like they are just releasing patches with a formula and not really releasing any kind of dynamic content along with it. It does feels like they are more concerned with making patches more generic, it almost feels like they are using WoW in order to experiment for ideas with their new MMO.
What do we do in this game?
What do you do aside from that? Nothing really, yes we will get daily quests in 4.2 but it's not really immersive, you don't really have fun things to do in game when you don't want to do the three focuses.
I would love to see new things added to the game Mini-games, bounties, town defenses, character customization ANYTHING than you can play around with if you aren't doing one of the three focuses.
The problem is also they are very slow in delivering content, the slowness doesn't even bother me so much but it's the lack of real dynamic changes to the game that should be included with the patches not just Raid A or Dungeon B. Give players something to chew on and stop making patches so cookie cutter.
So far all I've seen from the "Ask the Devs" series was good questions (IE: Playerbase: "___ is broken/bugged/not fun/etc., what will you do about it") Followed by the Devs: "We understand that, [insert comment about what we plan on doing, vaguely touch on how long it will be (between soon, in planning, or not right now), then say that the Firelands dailies will be fantastic and will keep people entertained for an entire 6+ month cycle]"
Something is feeling lost and forgotten since early Wrath. Maybe it's the sense of a world? Almost every re-made zone has about 50 or so quests, with the Cata zones having 100-ish. There is nothing, I repeat NOTHING that is interesting, exciting, and not a grind to do out in the world. Everything that is fun to do is instanced with either a queue or something you can do one version of per week. Anything that Blizzard will add in a content patch that will be fun will either A. be datamined immediately, B. Vaguely hinted at and will be datamined shortly after, or C. not mentioned at all and no one will notice.
Anything Blizzard does will have people complaining. I think Blizzard is just scared. They are afraid that what they will do will upset this section of the players, which will cause them to leave. So they add barely interesting content and nifty vanity pets and mounts and mobile apps and premium services. The game is in constant imbalance, and Blizzard is "fixing" class skills instead of core issues. FIX THE CORE ISSUES! If the computer has no RAM, and a not so good video card, and you can only afford one, which will you choose? The core issue or the small nuisance?
Blizzard, as one of your most loyal customers (Been playing since around 1.11) who has played WoW every week for 6 years, I say this: If you don't fix the big issues now, you're on the path to ultimate downfall. If you continue with the whole "It's not on our priority right now, we'll release it sometime in the expansion after the next" for things players want, and the continued deterioration of the world and community, the game will suffer.
I understand some of these things are quite daunting. But some of these need to happen ASAP.
Neth, I think a large part of the problem is, for the first time in really ever, a lot of content is simply being cut. Now while there have been reasons given for these cuts, the end result is players see a lot of things being cut and not replaced. The reasons, such as the Maw, are that the story is fine as is. That is subjective since popular response seems to be the ending was less than satisfying, unless Neptulon being devoured by the octopus is the intended ending. Given that the Neptulon storyline was written and implemented many months ago before the Abyssal Maw was cut, I think its objectively fair to say that the storyline did not end as planned and now it has been changed to meet with the realities of content creation.
Players first started getting this "the game is slowing down" feeling when ICC hit. Prior to 3.3, the game had had 3 tiers of content from 5 mans to raids in 13 months time, dating back to the launch of Wrath. Uld was 5 months and a few days from Wrath/Naxx launch, ToC came out 4 months later then ICC 4 months after that.
Then we had 3.3 for a year. I know Blizzard has more or less said they made a mistake with the pacing of the prior content, which is subjective since I don't think actually adding big content updates frequently was something most players disagreed with, versus waiting 6-12 months between major content patches/tiers of content as seems to be the new trend.
Uld to ToC might have been slightly short for some players, as has been stated by some players over time, but is it better to have content out faster to where people might not always have had their fill of it and been sick of it, versus now when plenty of people have had their fill and outright stop playing until a future time, be it the next tier or beyond?
Is it fair to say that the growing gap between content tiers and the fairly large cuts and delays needed to even achieve what is and will be implemented in 4.1 and 4.2 is because Blizzard has given up on WoW? No. Is it fair to say its because there's a skeleton crew working on the game because of Titan or whatever it is called? No.
However, surely you can see why the last year and a half of development has created a lot of speculation and concern in the player base. Whether it is justified or not, correct or not, its still a valid matter to ponder. All we can hope for is some honest and informative answers beyond vague soonities that are approved by what I presume is essentially your editor in chief who vets what you decide/are able to divulge on these types of threads.
A suggestion for this 'dead' world. World bosses. You have the Twightlight hammer for crying out loud. You have all sorts of Dragons. Why not have a dragon raid on a zone? Why not disrupt the lovely little script so people can band together, get out of Stormwind or Ogrimmar and go hunt some stuff?
I find myself more than ever before just sitting in the main city queuing for stuff or ziping around through portals to go to the place i need.. never do I need to venture out in the world and so there is barely anyone in the world either. The zones could be in different universes they are so displaced from each other. Its also been over six months and still no new content.
I strongly object to the way the premium services are being introduced to the game on top of the subscription fee and now we have yet another flying monstrosity people can buy, yet it is not available through playing the game.
The heroic mode raid content is extremely poorly tuned (for 10 man mode at least) with some bosses seemingly impossible compared to others. Class balance in PvE seems like a distant memory. I did enjoy the raid content and while I like the idea of heroic modes it seems it was just used to extend the life of the raids.
While I liked the move from easy mode the change has had a very negative effect on the community and made using dungeon finder an unpleasant experience. The guild system has also had a knock on effect that makes recruiting new members much more difficult and a bit of alt pug raiding was made much more of an ordeal as a result.
Blizzard said they wanted to make Cata the most epic of all wow and yet it feels to me like they aren't even close to creating an awesome experience. Lots of people are quitting and for me its looking like Firelands will be released too late.
I want to see Blizzard do better. I want to love this game as much as I did when I started.
But the feeling of MEH, with this expansion is pretty overwhelming. I simply don't care about Deathwing. He flies around cooking people sometimes, but other than that...he's had a mere handful of appearances and has mainly stayed out of sight.
I lend my voice to the opinion that both quality and quantity of content feels as if it's slipping. BC was fantastic, in my eyes. There was a lot that still needed fixing (most of which was at least pushed into a proper direction with WotLK) but it had the most engaging and fun PvE content to date. I didn't mind Kael'thas coming back. Didn't bother me in the least, actually. It's not as if the bad guy coming back from the brink of death to further terrorize the protagonists is a new plot device (Anakin Skywalker comes to mind)
What bothered me was things like this:
Naxxramas 2.0 - Not much new in here. Scaled-up damage/hp levels and encounters slightly modified to handle 10/25 players instead of 40.
Onyxia 2.0 - Same dragon, different day.
Trial of the Crusader - No explanation required. Blatant stall tactic.
ZA/ZG 2.0 - Each with virtually identical encounters to their predecessors with the one exception of Venoxis. Venoxis deserves some praise.
I assert that Tiers 7 and 9 were a combination of rehashed/less than inspired content while Tiers 8 and 10 were both visually impressive and supremely entertaining, especially on hardmode. On the surface, one might look at this and theorize that Tiers 7 and 9 (intentionally or not) functioned as stall content while the vastly superior Tiers 8 and 10 were being developed. We know for a fact that this is the case with Tiers 9 and 10.
That said, I think I'm not alone in stating that WotLK felt like 2 raids wrapped in 4 raids worth of gear.
Skip forward to Cataclysm, we'll have to wait and see how 4.2 goes to be sure, but if I were so bold as to assume the same general model as WotLK is being put in play here, I believe Blizzard started off with a strong tier and Firelands will be a fluff tier. From the looks of the PTR testing, most of the bosses normal modes are fairly underwhelming. Anthricyst (NOT Rhyolith) looks a little interesting, and Baleroc is obviously going to be a fun one for the meter-maids in the group, but I honestly don't see 6 months worth of hard development time.
Even though there is disagreement on the quality of the content, which can be expected, there is an overwhelming consensus with the concern of a lack of content. It is confusing to many of us that back during the days of BC when WoW had a good deal less subscribers and therefore less revenue that there was much more content. BC launched with 24 raid bosses and after only a few months the next major patch gave us another 14. Wrath launched with 18 raid encounters and again was followed a few months later with a content patch of 14 encounters. And that isn't even counting new 5 man dungeons. I've heard in a past developer comment that the new patch philosophy was to release smaller patches more often. However this time around the initial release only had 14 unique raid encounters. The first raid patch is only going to contain 7 raid encounters and this took 2 months longer to come out that Ulduar. I can see how subscribers could be worried that Blizzard is giving up on WoW since even though they have more revenue they are releasing less content.
There was a blue post earlier this year that stated Blizzard didn't feel players were ready for Firelands yet because not a lot of guilds had downed the end bosses and such. A month or so later, Blizzard stated that players were consuming content much faster than anticipated.
You can't have it both ways. When speaking generally about the playerbase, you simply cannot tell us that we're not progressed enough for Firelands and then immediately state that we're burning down content too fast.
This really leaves only three possibilities - you're free to choose whichever you think is accurate:
a. We're killing bosses too fast (so why nerf them further?)
b. We're not killing bosses fast enough (then why are so many people bored with this tier?)
c. We are whatever is the most convenient label at the time
Have to agree here, not much was given to players who were 80 when Cata hit. Sure there is a HEAP of stuff available for new players and those who like to level alts or wanting to try something different. But the journey from 80-85 was over all too quickly the lack of instances available in that journey were also a concern. Then there is the story my biggest complaint out of the whole lot. You did a very poor job in linking instances and raid content to Deathwing and his minions. To that effect while i can see the landscape has changed I do not fear or feel his presence. For someone who plays as often as i do i have seen him once just as he was leaving an area on my main (this guy) and once on an alt. For an angry dragon he is quite sedated.
Does Deathwing seem to be a villain? No not really he breaths fire kills 30 or 40 people a day per server. What has he done that seems so utterly evil and destructive that you can actually grow a hate for him and actually feel like you have to purge him.... there really isn't anything there, unless you hate people killing you and hold large grudges. In Wrath the Lich Kind was obviously a villain, here, we have a dragon who likes to bully people.... where is the evil presence of Deathwing, it lacks that connection.
Wrath is where most of the disconnect began. But there was still considerable lore within the Story. The quests actually contained the lore rather than in-jokes, parody and 'humour'. You helped a young crusader in his final moments, saw the fall of a troll empire, watched the implosion of the Scarlet Crusade, fought through the vile Nax again, witnessed the fracturing of native peoples of Northrend, saw the will of the makers be brought down, fighting the Scourge at every possible point, Became champions of the Crusade, The Wrathgate, as well as the whispers of an Old One leaking out. And the capstone to all of this you fought and kill Arthas, one of the biggest bads who ever big badded. I liked Wrath, I may be one of the few who did, but I enjoyed it because the quests were fun and took themselves serious.
What have we done in Cataclysm? We've poked around several zones, fought Raggy again, helped a battle in Uldum, Indiana Jones parody, fought off Twilight Hammer, Naga and Elemental mooks, lost the Elemental Lord of Water, killed the Elemental Lord of Air, befriended the Elemental Lord of Earth, killed Onyxia and Nefarion again, killed Cho'Gal...and yeah...we're about to fight raggy for the third time, twice in this expansion.
Don't get me wrong, I love a funny quest but there are TOO MANY. I mean literally many of the Alliance quests early and late game become jokes and gimmicks with no substantial lore. The Goblin zones, while just as gimmicky as the Alliance quests, they actually evolve the characters beyond just bad bomb jokes. They actually tell a story. What do we get out a Redridge? Rambo parody, nothing more. Westfall? CSI Parody and set up for an instance. It was really well done, the set up, but the parody wasn't needed.
And I'm sure I didn't do the breakdown of Wrath or Cata currently any justice but...still... it feels as if there was as little effort as possible put into some zones. I mean sure, we get stuff like Stonetalon, but "Hey, lets make a Rambo parody zone!"
Deathwing feels like a forum troll
"Im in your zones starting flame wars" then runs off once the QQ starts "LOLOLOLOLOL"
That is no villain its just a pain in the but.
Anyway, my point is I am having a hard time finding anything on Deathwing. There is some but really nothing that makes me want to travel to his lair and kill him.
When I first heard of "Cataclysm" I thought of pure epic'ness. I thought I was getting a villain that was hell bent on vengeance and wanted nothing more than to kill as much people as possible while destroying the world. Maybe I hyped it up too much in my head. I just expected more.
IMO Deathwing isn't doing too much. I realize now that the reason I waned more quests is because I feel starved of what little story there is. I personally don't care about gaining XP or gear so long as more incidents where Deathwing almost kills Alexstrasza. I want to see him start doing what he erupted from the earth to do and I want to stop him from succeeding.
So I just logged into WoW. Queued up for a Battle ground, but then after five minutes of sitting around Ogrimmar I pulled myself out of the Que. Then I jumped into a wait for a heroic instance. But after few more minutes of wandering pointlessly around Ogrimmar I left that Que as well.
I switched over to one of my alts, currently sitting at Outland. I killed one thing for a quest, then switched again. I kept doing this for a moment before I realized I have literally no will power to play. My maxed out character kicks around Ogrimmar waiting for that little timer to pop up because I don't feel like being lead by the nose through another Cataclysm zone.
And I don't want to play my alts because I don't want to drag myself through BC and Wrath to have them just sitting around Stormwind, twiddling their thumbs waiting for timers to pop up. I just kind of say "what's the point?" I really shouldn't be ever asking this about a game, should I?
And you are exactly right. A lot of things the orginal dev's talked about didn't happen. Look at player housing, guild halls and the dance studio. Cay, Kat and Tigole all came out and said that player housing and guild halls would be in game. When it didn't happen in vanilla, Tigole came out in 07 and addressed the issue and said they still wanted to do it, but that it wouldn't happen during BC. The Dance Studio was also something that, timeline wise, seemed to be something the original dev team was working on, and advertised it for Wrath, but of course as the seeming timeline being the start of Wrath for the move over to Titan, that and the other projects have just been left to hang.
I'm not even so sure the current dev's are calling the shots for WoW. People can say all they want that Blizzard is totally independent of Activision Blizzard, but the corporate structure says different. It was also telling when Kotick came out with his idea of selling Starcraft 2 cinematics seperately.
You know, Deathwing may have the power to destroy the world, but he's a goddamn idiot. The fact that he didn't squash Stowmwind to the ground already makes him a bad villain in my book. He learns that the people of Stormwind is responsible for the death of Onyxia, Deathwing's daughter, and what does he do? Does he murder the people of Stormwind for and destroy the entire city for revenge? nope he just takes the head and leave. Oh sure, he blew up the park, but it sure looks like it didn't take effort for him to destroy it. He just goes, ok I'll blow up the park and go into hiding and wait for them to show at up my top secret lair, they surely can't get stronger by the time they reach me right?
I honestly thought it would be neat if there was a long epic questline that involves rebuilding Stormwind, that would've added a bit of decent epic story to it.
Hell Jaina pulling some crazy magic crap, Varian going berserker with some mad magic. Have Velen do some crazy light spells, have hundreds of SW soldiers charging up to Deathwing as well as mages.
Epic showdown to drive him off.
I wouldn't have minded either something like that.
Heck honestly a cut scene where you see SW soldiers racing up the cities walls by the dozens. As Deathwing arrives mages fire spells and they fire flaming arrows. Deathwing kills them by blasting a whole section of the wall apart. You have people screaming in the streets, running way and so forth as buildings are demolished and terror reigns.
More soldiers arrive as dwarf gryphon riders arrive firing spells as they went. Jaina would arrive empowering the archers to fire explosive arrows. Velen could conjure up a giant avatar of light.
giving us another new raid isn't enough for content they need to revamp animations for starters and character models need updating
they can do so many things but it's up to them on how many players they want to lose which will become substantial enough when SWTOR comes out
maybe then we can see real content delivered but I don't understand why they would develop a new MMO when they keep stating they have all these new ideas for WoW and fresh content when I clearly am seeing recycled content coming out for Cataclysm which is by far the smallest expansion to date
it feels as if WoW is on the last of their to do list with Diablo 3 being up top followed by the next sc2 xpac and Titan closely behind either way this game is at least how I feel going downhill and will continue to do so especially when guild wars 2 and SWTOR come out
A lot of people don't realize what all content we lost in Wrath. During beta it was talked about there being seven chapters to the story. But there was so much we didn't get. Like the other Icecrown zone raid, the Gundrak raid, the Outland raid. Azjul'Nerub was never made into a full zone.
The thing that brought me back to WoW for cataclysm was the talk about how the game would get back to being Warcraft. How we would see Kul Tiras this expansion, was talked about major events in Arathi with many people believing Danath would show back up to deal with Sylvanas which made sense based on what she did to his nephew.
There was the fact that Garrosh has brought Garona and the Dragonmaw back into the Horde. This makes no sense, unless he is actually under Deathwing's control. There's Sylvanas making enemies of the Argent Dawn (Crusade) because of her re-plaguing what they are cleansing.
So much potential that looks like it just won't be realized.
Stromgarde should be recaptured in my opinion. Tulayon should come back as well as well as Danath to whoop ass.
I really see Slyvanas plight on the western plaguelands and other places as direct challenge to the Argent Crusade. Seriously Tiron should do something about it.
Yeah as you said so many stories. Even with the revamped zones there are so many great stories that are left on cliff hangers and I think they will be left there until like 5 patches down the line or new expansion=/.
This SOOOOOO much. I'm really tired of meeting characters or hearing about events that I don't recognize but that are apparently important to the storyline, looking them up on WoWWiki or some similar site, and discovering that the entire backstory for said character or event was done in the comics or books or something.
I understand that there are people out there that are so into Warcraft that they'll gobble up anything with the name on it, but I have no interest in reading comics to understand the backstory behind something in the game. To me, this actually breaks the storyline into weird little fragments, and I lose interest. I shouldn't have to go look up, buy, read, and understand an entire comic book/novel in order to understand the quest arc I'm working on.
I quit WoW after 5 years of solid play shortly after Cata was released, and this week I came back to kind of get another look at where its at. And once again nothing has changed the best time i had in this game was pre BC- BC. Just because wow is a MMO doesn't mean everyone wants to play with each other, the lack of solo content and inability to gear yourself with competitive gear in pvp without the annoying Arena and rated BGs has made me look else where, and where you could lvl a alt in BGs well just hope you have the boa gear to go along with it.
Unfortunately this visit back hasn't gave me any reason to continue my membership and will be canceling once again while I eagerly await something else. fortunatley many choices are comming.
Anyway... I'm not too keen on defending Cataclysm as I did up there, because something has changed. Maybe it's me, but I can almost never remember feeling bored of content in Wrath (with the exception of ToGC, lol crappy filler content). I just remember there was always something to do. Granted, Wrath was my baby, I never got to fully experience TBC's endgame, so I did have things like leveling alts (for the first time) to do.---
But after quite a bit of searching, thinking, and questioning, I can say with certainty that I know what the issue is. The issue is the lack of community. I remember the feeling I had when I got my Death Knight to 80 in Wrath, and having to sit in trade looking for groups to join to run heroics because there was no LFG Tool. Don't get me wrong, the LFG tool is nice, but it creates more boredom and frustration than what it does for convenience.
I could go on and on about queue times like every other dps does, but my point is that with that sense of community, and being able to pick and choose who you group with, was what made the game enjoyable. If someone left because the boss didn't drop their item, you could out them in Trade and diminish their chances of finding a group. Same with ninjas. RealID is another part of this problem, as you don't have to be on the same server as your friends to talk to them, so you have a disconnect there, but that's another issue..
I also think the way the game is currently being designed has something to do with the way the game feels. Leveling from 80 to 85, I only came across quests that I could do by myself, with the exception of CoC. I remember having to actually ask in General chat for groups to do group quests, when you couldn't just solo an elite that's two levels higher and has three times more health because they hit like they have wet noodles for weapons or because 15 NPCs come running in and distract/kill the boss for you. This all contributes to that missing sense of community. I remember knowing who was good and who wasn't. Who was annoying, who's alt was who's and so on. But now I just know the people in my guild and who's the biggest Troll/Idiot in trade.
I'm still on the fence about the Firelands. I'm not too fond of the dailies (honestly, is anyone really? Even the most casual player cannot like dailies), and I think 7 bosses in the only instance of the Tier isn't enough. Idk about anyone else, but even with 12 bosses in one instance, ICC, the content managed to get old quickly and got dragged out for nearly a year which was killer, and Ruby Sanctum didn't really help either.
[..] All of this is because of changes that I really appreciated at the time. Mass summon, the dungeon finder, the BG/pvp queue option, etc. really saves a lot of time and effort. But at the same time, it's created a situation where I have no reason to leave the main city or interact with anyone on the server. I don't think being on a pvp server would really change this when (a) most of those servers have terrible balance after faction and server changing and (b) I don't have much reason to repeat those quests (because the game is trying to be less grindy).
I think the post a few above, that suggested a world pvp zone with objectives of value would go a long way toward changing this atmosphere. The extended time that we have to spend in dungeons and raids (because they aren't as faceroll as wrath) doesn't really make it feel like we have more to do. I'm spending more time to accomplish less (at the start of a tier) or I'm spending the same amount of time but doing less (end of a tier raid farming involves sitting in town, getting mass summoned to the raid, porting back). There isn't even a reason to have summoning stone pvp anymore, because no one hangs out at the summoning stones. Harder content means I'm also unwilling to pug any raids, and at the point that I no longer need to go through 5-mans, it's become less of "I wonder if I'll ever interact with horde again" and more of "I will never interact with anyone but my guild".
All of these quality of life improvements (to make things less grindy and annoying) have actually gone a long way toward destroying the community. I think the only way to fix this is to make an objective in the world (specific to a single server) that has lasting value (instead of a fast rep grind where I get a tabard and I'm finished going to that zone forever).
If something doesn't change, though, I guarantee that more and more players will lose interest. Just look at the sudden popularity of the trivia bot - people have to spend time in the game waiting to build raid groups etc., but end up playing some other mini-game to pass the time because there's nothing to do in the actual game. Eventually you have to assume that players will start to wonder if they're getting a worthwhile value for their subscription fees.
As far as patches go, the start of this expansion got off to a really really good foot as far as raiding and dungeons. nearly half of the expansions content was rehashed in the form of recreating azeroth (that's why its only 5 levels) and to get to max level and see new un rehashed raid content it was very welcome. (if only it was exciting to me, lol) Then patch 4.1 happened, as a vanilla and bc player watching the preview videos made me feel very very very strange. i've seen this stuff before, i got excited about zul aman long long ago and really into it. to see it brought up again made me feel very hallow and "wat.." towards the game in general. i was hoping blizzard was holding out a bit because something really freaking epic (ulduar/icc/bt) EPIC was coming in the future, but with the cancellation of the abysall maw and announcing that firelands will only have 7 bosses i'm extremely skeptical. people are going to be burnt out of that raid, and burnt out really really fast if that's the only raid instance for that teir (and it is)
And then it happened, the realid cross grouping "premium service" was announced, i will leave that out of my post as i feel ive put my input in one of the 17+ page capped threads that never got a response, not even acknowledging the communities utter disgust
Then comes the gladiator mount this season, i've yet been able to achieve it myself and its one of the few goals left in the game that i feel very passionate about.
the mount clearly didn't get the same amount of "resources" as the winged lion did, and considering how hard to obtain it really is its pretty questionable to say the least. they deserve to ride freaking deathwing with lazers and fire trails around, or something very close at the very least for the things they need to pull off to obtain that.
I think the awkward problem with Cataclysm was wanting to do too much and not allowing enough time to do it, so it earned the title "Scrapaclysm". There are entire zones that missed the cataclysm because they ran out of time. Animations/sounds/textures not finished because they ran out of time. Dungeons scrapped, BGs scrapped, stories left hanging because they ran out of time.
Rebuilding an entire world AND adding new parts to it for an expansion is a lot to undertake. On top of it all, they attempted to rework the talent system and added guild leveling.
It's truly a lot, moreso than anything in Wrath or BC. I understand if Devs don't want to admit to maybe taking on too much work all at once for one expansion, but I think it's obvious. I don't hold it against them. The effort is nice and for the most part fantastically executed, but there's a lot of glaring unfinished work out there.
Don't even get me started on the AWFUL "cinematics" in quests now. Some peeps gotta learn how to control a camera in a 3D animation application.
I think that people are forgetting that blizz completely re-di dthe entire lvl1-60 experience. that's a huge amount of content. yes, Cata is lacking in endgame, lvl85 content, but considering how much els ethey did its understandable. I have enjoyed cataclysm quite a bit so far.
I will admit however, that blizz does seem to be using stalling tactics, and there is a good deal of things that seemed like they were half-assed and rushed out. (like worgen) also, the main deathwing plot seems to have stagnated.
Since the launch of cataclysm, Blizzard has absolutely changed it style of communication with the wow community. The Wrath model created a lot of contention on the forums, but it was a give and take that felt like a conversation. It felt like Blizzard was actually communicating. Now the model is to over-calculate and over-formulate everything. Blogs that read like they've been vetted 30 times in company meetings before each one is posted (who wants to bet that this is where the company has tied up so much of the CMs' time over the past 6 months). Canned postings from CMs that used to actually give dialogue and discussion that now only say "we're passionate about this game" or attack the very players who care enough to post by saying "I don't see you giving any suggestions" when Blizzard intentionally destroyed the suggestions forum.
It's like listening to a politician who calculates every word he says. It rings hollow. It's just words with no substance. It makes me wonder how long I'm willing to give this company my money, and absolutely encourages me to seek other alternatives.
Agreed. this feels like the smallest of all the expansions, but I do disagree on some of the points made. I thought the quests this time were far superior to WotLK, and the dungeons felt like mini raids which was nice. I feel blizzard needs to embrace what they are seeing the players enjoy. Most players spend just as much time in the random dungeons as anything else currently.
Only folks who can still stomach the serious raiding experience, gain anything from Abysmal Maw and Firelands in 4.2. I would rather see a random raid finder for folks that have surpassed ZA and ZG. Since the WoW community has taken notice of item level, raiding has not been as fun.
However i feel the item level and progressive dungeons provide players the much needed experience in becoming raid ready. As a raider it seems like a chore to stay on top of the content and maintain the highest item level possible. I would like to see new raid content that has gear with a new look, new abilities, stats, and the same item level. It gets boring seeing every caster, wearing the same looking gear, just because we are coming close to the end of a content patch.
Im trying not to be too negative...but...I returned to the game last night...started out with the quests in STV. I have to say...I am not impressed. A complete rework of what was already there. Zanzil.....redid the quest hub for Nessingwary...two of the quests were bugged...had to drop them and get them back twice just to be able to see the npcs. Sorry but this is not up to the par that Blizzard set for itself.
I will try the other new hub tonight..more of the same and I have to say I think Blizzard is done with Wow.....at least from the standpoint of investing resources into the development and maintenance of the game.
I also agree that players are herded like cattle to end game as fast as possible, then it's raid or bust. Don't get me wrong - raiding is the core of the game, but with the increased difficulty of Cata raids compared to Wrath, players hit 85 within hours of buying the x-pac to just bang their head against raids and stop progressing. I would like to see leveling a bigger part of the game - more zones, bigger zones, more levels, more xp needed to advance levels. I couldn't believe it when I saw an 85 not 5 hours after Cata's launch.
I have no urge to raid. I have no urge to make schedules and plans just to do a large chunk of content that doesn't seem exciting to me. I have no urge to raid, no need to and to be totally honest why should I be expected to?
My issue is that it feels like some of the content is missing, like things were rushed out. I know, they re-did the entire 1-60 world but how many of us went from 80-85 in less than a week? And how many times are you expected to go through 1-60? I have alts, I get them to about 65 and I lose steam on progression because I hit Burning Crusade like a truck hitting a wall.I enjoy the 1-60 content, I really do. I mean I see some things that could be a bit better but over all it's great.
But by show of hands, who would have complained if Edit: Cataclysm (not Wrath, derp) came out in say March but we had a more complete game?
They've ignored substance. They've ignored that it's the WORLD of Warcraft. Other MMO has been able to keep players using things outside of the combat bar. They've had player housing that people can customize and play with for hours and hours and hours on end. They've had quests with stories to, rather than a hundred and one "Hey guys, won't this be cool?" quests? Games have had exploration, they've had events (which WoW has, but they haven't added any new ones in forever, and it's got to the point where most players dont care - they've already done it.
Other MMO have appearance tabs that have people farming up gear for looks, other MMO have all these amazing little addons that are outside of leveling, outside of raiding, outside of PvP, and they are kickass things. They give people a sense of adventure, they give people something outside of combat, they give them something to -do-.
Sadly, blizzard seems to have mostly ignored these aspects, and have gone so far as to make fun of people, (about a year ago, I made a thread about adding an app tab. It got a blue response, where I was told to do arena's in the summer vestments. I've been pissed off at blizzards customers service since) or flat out ignore people who bring it up (we can't make an app tab because the art team will be sad. Well, this game isn't made for the art team, it's made for the players: screw the art team.)
I think part of the reason so many people are unhappy, is that alot of these new quests are incomplete. You do a zone, and it just stops with no resolution.
That, and blizzard is falling behind other MMO in more areas than just looks. They're tunnel visioned on PvE content, and ignoring everything else. They see it as a MMOG, and not a MMORPG.
The Twilight are always there, but you never get much of an idea that their leadership are doing anything. You're just slaughtering abunch of purple robbed loons with no real idea of who they answer to. Deathwing never has much of a pressense in WoW beyond what he did to the world, he's so 2 dimensional that they could have replaced him with anyone and it would have been fine. Ragnaros could have been the main villain and nothing would have changed, a really kickass Mage could have been the villain and nothing would have changed, etc... nothing makes Deathwing special, nothing makes Cho'gall special. The cata zones aren't connected -at all-.
It's hard to provide evidence of what was taked about in beta. They talked about how there was to be seven chapters to Wrath. The Wrathgate was suppose to be the end of Chapter 1, Naxx, Maly and OS the end of Chapter 2, Ulduar Chapter 3, and so on.
There was the other Icecrown zone raid that never got done, the gundrak raid that never got done, the Outland raid which never got done. Azjul'Nerub was not just meant as a dungeon, but there was to be an entire explorable zone of it as well.
So all in all Wrath is just a poor thing to hold up in defense of Cataclysm.
That's because the comics were cancelled due to low sales. I've even read that the 2 follow up novels to The Shattering which were to set up more of what we are doing now MAY have been cancelled because of poor sales of The Shattering. I have been trying to find information but can't find any. However considering there is a lack of information about any possible release of these novels, that does seem to be a good indicator they may not be showing up at all.
And the troubling aspect of poor comic and novel sales may well indicate they are losing their base Warcraft fans. If that's true, that does indeed hurt the game and the franchise.
Up in Jotunheim that big castle had the instance wall that could be seen through the cracks in the gate for that raid. Gundrak's raid was to be the big central building just above the areas where the dungeon is accessed. The Outland raid was never said what it would be, they merely said they didn't want Outland seemingly irrelevant for Wrath the way aplayers felt the old world was for BC. Many people speculated that the Outland raid was to be Deathwing's Lair which would make sense to be a set up raid for Cataclysm.
I try to think of a way that blizzard could introduce these "villians" and realistically speaking there isn't much way to. The reason why Keal'thas and Illidan were such great villians were not because they were spouting end of the world babbling but because we had played a game entirely based on their perspective. His monolog was extensive, but you already knew he was fighting for his life before he got there. This deathwing dude I have no clue where he came from or why he became mad. Cho'gal is in the same boat. That is because realistically there is no mention of them ANYWHERE in world of warcraft. You run into him while leveling alliance but otherwise he is just babbling like he does in Bastion.
Fanghorn staghelm looks like a great villian, however I never even knew malfurion had a brother, I wouldn't have known that unless I had read the books. The people who have the time to read probably think he is the greatest. For everyone else, we are confused beyond measure of how he even joined ragnoros. Therein lies your problem. When a game is just releasing content with zero story it is easy to not feel excited over it. After all, why are we fighting this dude? Who cares he drops epics. If you have that mentality around a player base the game content will not hold very fast.
Agree with the OP. It's actually the reason I cancelled my account.
Vanilla was fun because it was new, albeit terribly unbalanced. Everything was so different than what has been done before in other MMORPGs, that it truly made for an entertaining experience. Albeit raids didn't have many original models or abilities for bosses (I'm looking at you, Blackwing Lair), raids just felt new.
Then Burning Crusade came along. They provided more of the good stuff and either attempted to, sucessfully fixed, or improved the bad. The game surely felt different, but it didn't feel worse, which was great. Well, except for world pvp, because flying mounts kinda ruined that. Overall, it was a positive experience.
Then Wrath of the Lich King came along.
The new maps were beautifully designed, and the quests were much more enjoyable than the prior games. But quests aren't something you WANT TO go through more than a couple times. That's what the endgame is for.
And what did we get for endgame content?
The worst state of PvP balance to date, 2 new raid bosses and a recycled instance from vanilla.
A great tier 2 raid instance, and one of my all-time favorites.
A pathetic filler for a tier 3 raid instance.
Another 1-boss raid filler.
That's why I agree with Tokijin. The game did get better over time, in some areas. Questing and levelling feels much better. Talent design also feel much better. Cross-realm dungeon queue also works much better than trying to find a group on your own realm for lower level dungeons. The game is much more friendly and has a lot of content accessible to newcomers.
But the endgame content has seen nothing short of an impressive downfall since Burning Crusade.
The exciting raid encounters are few and far between. Plenty of encounters use recycled mechanics from old encounters, giving you the feeling that you're fighting the same bosses in a new skin.
PvP is a car riding a huge rollecoaster of buffs and nerfs. It's so frustrating gearing up a class that's gladiator material in one season, only to have them nerfed to bottom tier in the next.
Worst of all, they're advertising dailies as something epic. Please, they're dailies. Nothing epic happens every day.
Seems like all the good quality developers that remain of the original team are busy designing the new expansion's zones and quests. Those guys are definitely getting better at it.
The staff charged with creating endgame content must be either seriously lacking manpower right now, or plain just lost the will to work, and just doing the bare minimum to not get fired by rightful cause.
I am just going to offer my insight to you as a gamer, but content does not feel like content anymore, it feels and plays like something meant to stall players. At this point it is easy to jump to conclusions, even myself, that we are stuck with the B-team and stuff like that. After all, the last truly innovative idea that has come to WOW was Wintergrasp, everything else has been recycled content or systems using recycled content. This is in no way meant to call Blizzard bad, but to show that WOW is lacking substance in many areas with content slowly becoming less innovative and less overall. I don't know, I just miss that WOW aspect that blizzard was and still is capable of delivering on, I just am wondering what is holding you back?
I've been 13/13 heroic for awhile now and I have very similar feelings to you. A lot of hardcore raiders do. This entire expansion feels very rushed. It's obvious that WoW isn't getting the resources it used to get when it comes to development. Just look at the 4.2 ptr. They were attempting to test 3-4+ bosses a day and even testing on a Saturday. They didn't just randomly have people available on a Saturday to do boss testing. They are rushing to get 4.2 out quickly because they lost so many subs.
This whole expansion feels this way. It's like they felll way behind in beta and just never caught up. Everything since has been a stall in hopes they can catch up. Seriously, in 6+ months we've gotten 2 heroics. HEROICS! Not bgs, no new zones, no raids... not even ony sized raids. Just 2 heroics that they didn't even need to design. Just go in and alter the place a bit. It's very boring to a lot of us. But of course there are always lots of people who don't mind this or simply don't care, so it's easy say that it's working for someone.
I still enjoy the game, but it's getting harder and harder to justify my subscription. Hopefully 4.3 isn't too far off. I very much doubt a new daily hub and 7 bosses will keep people busy for another 6-7 months.
The complaint is that whatever people have been assigned to the job aren't producing sufficient content to keep people playing. With a game that supposedly takes in over $150 million each month in subscription fees, the question is why more resources (or new hires) aren't being brought in to keep that number climbing by generating more content.
The first tier of Cataclysm raiding was flat out excellent; most I talk to say it is the best since Sunwell (with a few holding Ulduar as their favorite).
Guilds are far more sophisticated than they used to be in terms of preparing for and conquering raid content. I think Bilzzard has done a good job of keeping up the difficulty level and even the variety of the encounters.
My *only* concern right now is that Firelands raiding brings only 7 bosses to the table.
I agree that the 4.0 raids were excellent.
But sitting on any raid tier for longer than 5 months is a failure in my eyes.
Definitely concerned that the 7 bosses in Firelands (which current heroic-mode raiders are already way too geared for) won't last long at all (and the restricted loot tables already means my class took another flavor hit with 1H agility swords being scrapped). I'm further concerned that the whole 6.5 months between raid content patches will continue.
I really have liked playing WoW for years. It's more than I have ever played any game ever and my guild feels like family. To me, there was a lot more to do in the game when I hadn't been playing so long. The holiday events were new and exciting and really 'events', things were still fun to discover.
I understand that you can never 'beat' an MMO like this, but you can sure run out of things possible for you to do. Expansions come, expansions go and there will never be enough end-game content to please us all, but if you don't give us enough to be happy even some of the time, you are going to start to lose to boredom the player base that has supported WoW for years and years now. You gave us Archeology but it's such a grind that after a while there is no reason to keep doing it unless it's just a time sink while you watch a movie. The game is full of end-game time sinks.
We didn't pay for a game that revamped to bring in more people with a better 1-60 experience. We paid to have more experiences with our mains that we play most of the time. New low level content brings in some new subscribers, but a lot of us old timers feel pretty let-down with what we have available to us. Having the new content for alts is fun but it reminds us of all the stuff lacking for us since we just got 5 levels of 'new' and a raid that normal mode was so ramped up in difficulty from LK and Cata 5-man heroics that it caused a lot of raids to reach breaking point.
And what's the deal with the patches taking so long to roll out? I would rather have lots of smaller patches with a few quest hubs added or a 5-man here and there than one huge one every 4-6 months with a raid and some quests added all at once. Don't make us feel like we can subscribe for a month, let our subscriptions lapse till the next big content push unless we want progression raiding or daily tokens to buy pets and trinkets.
WoW has been on cruise control since Ulduar. Its pretty obvious with all the rehashed content they've released. Not saying the game isnt fun but honestly unless you just like achievements or are a bleeding edge hardcore HM raider, there really is no reason to grind out anything in WoW.
The carrot on the stick model is pretty old and it surprises me how many people still fall for it, when you can wait a couple of months and just get the same gear people ground their finger nails to the bone to get a couple of months earlier.
I just dont have the time to play for hours and hours when with my schedule when the next patch comes and nullifies the grinding I did anyway. I just wait a month or two, take breaks from WoW and play other games in the meantime.
As awesome as WoW has been, people have to realize that with the next gen MMOs coming (ToR, GW2, Tera) Blizzard as the 800 pound gorilla in the room most certainly has plans for their next mmo to knock those other games into the back seat. I'm hoping they make some sort of fps mmo or something scifi based. Getting kinda tired of dragons myself. :P
But ya, WoW is definitely in if it aint broke dont fix it mode, and i wont be surprised when they start selling full geared 85s or legendaries for $25. It'll keep the carrot chasers happy while their heavy lifters are doing bigger things.
One of the things that has always bothered me for years, is that WoW has tried to please everyone and as a result has frustrated everyone. It felt like their was an original vision for the game and that things that were not planned on being included originally ended up being included and because the game wasn't designed for them it has taken up a lot of the development time. It's just impossible to please all people at all times. I think if Blizzard really does care about WoW, perhaps there should be a sit down and a talk about what is WoW about, why it exists and where you want it to go. I know as a long time Warcraft fan, it's frustrating to get into a storyline discussion with someone and have 20 people start laughing about people liking the lore and it seeming that the game pays more attention to those laughing at the lore fans.
Rob Pardo's comment about the inclusion of high end PvP when the game was not designed for it and how it gave the game a schizophrenic feeling I think was spot on. There just seems something lacking.
I can remember doing th Onyxia attunement. Yes, it was long and a bit grindy, but I felt like I was a part of an epic storyline. I never saw Naxx in vanilla. For that matter I never saw past Vael. But I never felt like I missed out. There was a sense of involvement. Now I am not saying vanilla was perfect and I would not want vanilla servers. The reps were WAY to much of a grind and such, but getting rid of things like attunements I feel was a big mistake.
I think losing attunements was about the time the story seemed to stop being part of the game. The attunements were complained about by people who were not true Warcraft fans and saw them as an obstacle to get to the content rather than being the main part of the content. Onyxia's attunement set up all that she had done, it had the huge battle in Stormwind keep. The story played out in game. When we were in BC, the BT attunement showed us Akama and how he was disillusioned with Illidan and what had become of Maive. The bulk of the story was in that attunement quest chain, the raid was merely the climax of the story.
I left after the first nite ICC was open for several months. That first nite when the first four bosses were out, we cleared it in 45 minutes, maybe less, no wipes. No one was excited on vent. People were like "This is it? This is Artha's lair?" It just seemed something was missing, the grandeur. Cataclysm had brought me back more full time because of so much talk about things like the probability of seeing Kul Tiras and how Danath may be seen in Arathi. About how Warcraft might actually come back to WoW. But seeing as how, if Morhaime's comments about not wanting to go more than 2 years between expansions is right, we are 25% done and a lot of things will go unanswered and unseen.
I've been playing since around the middle of The Burning Crusade. Before I was able to actually play the game, I read about it. A lot. I gobbled up lore, read through the classes, and pretty much immersed myself in the game as much as I could. Blizzard was able to construct such a compelling universe, that I was sucked into the game long before I could actually play it. Once I was able, I got my character to cap. I even did a bit of raiding (after the boss nerf, though). Then came Wrath. Wrath was a breath of fresh air. Even after my first character hit 80, I wanted to replay zones in Northrend, because the story and questing was entertaining. I did a bit of Naxx, but never anything beyond that. The Argent Tournament and running heroics (which were insanely fast) kept me occupied throughout the expansion, minus a short stint where I canceled my subscription.
Cataclysm hasn't offered me what the previous expansions (and the original 1-60) offered. There are no zones in Cata leveling that I particularly look forward to going through on my alts. It is now a matter of blazing through those five levels as fast as I can, to get it over with. The zones themselves lack an sense of direction. Vash'jir has you dealing with a Naga threat, which may or may not be tied into the Twilight's Hammer (I honestly can't tell from the quests). Hyjal has you fighting the Twilight's Hammer, and the forces of Ragnaros. Deepholm should generally be a fight with Twilight cultists, but instead you spend most of the time helping Earthen fight off troggs, or the big elementals fighting off their natural threats. The Twilight's Hammer plays a small part in all of it, especially the culmination, but it just feels like they're just there. Uldum apparently has some tie into Deathwing wanting the weapon stored there, but it's not a zone that expresses this very well. It feels very out of place, even when compared to the other Cataclysm zones. And Finally Twilight Highlands, where the main baddies of the expansion are based. This at least ties into the expansion, but you don't get a whole lot of that except near the end. Horde side has you fighting dwarves for the first chunk of questing.
If you compare it to Wrath, I think Wrath was much more focused. Part of that is having a whole continent to itself, true, and the other part is likely from Warcraft 3 defining the Cult of the Damned and the Scourge to such a great degree. We don't really get that with the Twilight's Hammer, even though they've been around (in one form or another) since Warcraft 2. All we know is they want to destroy the world. But that isn't a compelling enough villain. The Scourge certainly wanted to overrun the world, but there was also a sense of horror involved, with one's former allies being raised as undead. This created an interesting hook, which was played very well in the Death Knight starting area, and continued through the expansion.
With Wrath, going into dungeons always felt like it had a very distinct reason, as well. In the Nexus, we disrupted Malygos' plans, in the Utgaarde instances we were stopping the Vrykul from becoming a significant force in the Lich King's army, and in the Ulduar instances we were stopping corrupted Titan facilities from overruning the non-corrupted forces. They each had a bit of a story to them, and usually had questing lead-up. With Cata, I'm not sure I could tell you what was going on in each instance. Blackrock Caverns just feels like you're there because Twilight Hammer cultists are there (same for Grim Batol). I honestly couldn't tell you what we were doing in Vortex Pinnacle, and the reason for Halls of Origination is equally vague. The only place I can think of that had some definite reason was Throne of Tides, but at the end of that, apparently Neptulon gets carried off by Ozumat again, something I didn't find out until someone mentioned it.
My point with this? Cataclysm feels less focused. The villains are vague or two-dimensional, the reasons for the players doing what they're doing are often unclear, and there's little (for me anyway) that really hooks me. The dailies are unexciting and tedious (as compared to the Isle of Quel'Danas), the instances are even moreso, and the first content patch didn't add much. Two rehashed raids which, while fun at first, become a headache to run over and over again. And frankly, the constant gear treadmill is not an exciting end-game. I'm not going to say the developers are lazy, or that they're just taking our money and giving very little back. But I do think there's a lack of inspiration in the current game. The zones that are almost entirely pop culture references (Harrison Jones Uldum and Westfall, I am looking at you) show a lack of imagination. I don't play WoW for pop culture references. I play WoW for Warcraft lore and story. Having constant real-world intrusions breaks that immersion, and it feels like a lackluster job when we could have had a more distinctly Warcraft experience.
I am sorry to say that if 4.2's daily hub does not excite, I'm going to be canceling my subscription. The only way to affect change is to withhold our money from Blizzard. So long as the subscriptions stay up, Blizzard rightly will think the players are happy. If the subscription drop recently is any indication, players may be starting to become unhappy, and they are speaking out with the only way that will truly matter: money.
As an RPer, from one of the biggest RP servers, I can tell you, alot of people on my server play the game as a glorified chatroom now. Staying for friends and nothing else. The game is dead for alot of people, and it's due in large part to blizzard ignoring and belittling their RP base, as well as making no story to work with in Cata.
WotLK, had lots to work with story wise. In Cata, things are so disjointed, we have nothing to work with.
I love that in this tier, I can choose my prefered format (25 or 10) and stick with it, without feeling like I need to run both to get the best rewards.
However, I do agree that many of the fights don't feel as awesome as many of the fights in BC. And the reason is that they have to be designed for both 10 and 25man. The 10man fights in BC were very well designed for 10 players, and the 25man raids were designed around having 25 players, and it showed.
Having a full raid group on Lady Vashj, with groups all over doing their thing, is not possible on the same scale in a 10man group. Neither is it possible to have something like Karazhan on 25man. Part of what made kara cool was the smallness of it. It FELT like a person's home you were invading. Some of it was epic on scale, but because it was designed around 10 people, it made more sense.
While I agree it's necessary, I think having 2 formats of every raid has limited what the developers are capable of doing.
What I also believe is that people are experiencing a form of letdown as they progress, and I believe this is based on what WoW has done better, not what they've done worse. In previous expansions, leveling was a necessary evil. You leveled to reach the cap, to get some preparatory gear, so that you could enjoy the end-game.
In Cataclysm, this philosophy was turned on its head as Blizzard went to untold lengths to make leveling more fun. Such areas as Silverpine and Glineas, Stonetalon, Hyjal, and Uldum... For the first time, leveling was not just a road to a destination, it was a destination in and of itself. Many players found themselves earning Loremaster for the fun of it, with little of the former grindy sensation.
Then we reached the level cap, and we entered dungeons and heroics. Each was unique and immersive, and LFD made it simple to get in and run. There wasn't really anything new, but they were fairly solid experiences, and we felt satisfied with the stepping stone, even (generally) enjoying these hurdles, but seeing them still as nothing more than that - a gateway to raiding.
This is where things started to fall down. The end-game has carried on the successful traditions of yesteryear: daily quest hubs, PvP matches, and raids. But after such a pleasant leveling experience, we were left expecting MORE. This isn't just an addition to WoW, it's NEW. Leveling met and fed that expectation, and we were prepared to be dazzled. And instead of that, we met something that felt like it was a step down. Granted, that's where we just came from, and we enjoyed it, but we expected the climax to be the end-game, not the part that we rushed through months ago.
Many of us have experienced this. We wrested our desired heroic gear from the cold, dead hands of heroic bosses; collected elements to prepare ourselves; repeatedly slaughtered the maddened inhabitants of a ruined keep; and struggled to overcome near-impossible odds in an assault on the impenetrable fortress island. Yet when we finally enter our destination: the keeps of the resurrected masters of the black dragons, the lord of the winds, and the fanatical prophet of doomsday... we find ourselves asking, "That's it?" The phasing, the deeply-charactered NPCs, the engaging mechanics, and the sense that we're accomplishing something of real value were all left out in the real world and aren't to be found. There are no deadlines to press against, no crumbling platforms or collapsing floors to strike fear, no sense of urgency or importance in the death of these beings.
Daily quests are really the bane of my existence. I cannot see the value of having more gold. If I need some, I prefer to play with the AH, or farm an old world instance, or hope i get lucky in a dungeon, and it's always worked out so far.
Making dailies do the equivalent of the Argent Tournament quest series, which sent you all over Icecrown, and had phasing, and all the wonderfull mounts and noncombat pets, and in my opinion was still a huge setback to my enjoyment of the game.
Any time there is a waiting period, that is capped, that means that I need to do something daily or fall behind other people, it loses its fun for me. Usually, I just skip the experience altogether and come back to it sporadically.
At the very least, remove the caps (currency requirements).
When you spoke about the loss of 600k subs, your CEO claimed the way to fix it is push out faster content. Obviously you're not pushing content out faster, instead from what I've seen Firelands has been delayed, and we've some annoying " grinding " dailies. Sure class changes and what not are added, but lets be honest.
Catacylsm compared to TBC content push out...is completely subpar in just about every single element. Either all the content developers have gotten lazy, or they're putting time and effort in something else. *Shrug*
If Project Titan is NOT WoW 2, then Blizzard is in serious trouble. Above and beyond anything else the graphics engine in this game is extremely old and was based off of the one used in Warcraft 3, which was released in 2002 almost 10 years ago. Other games are destroying WoW in this regards, namely Guild Wars 2. This is the time frame where they would HAVE to start working on something like this which leads me to believe that despite what they may say or deny, WoW 2 in some way shape or form is in development at the moment. If not, then WoW will definitely become the next SWG in terms of how fast it will fall off the face of the earth in terms of subscription loss.
With that being said, this is why I believe you are seeing content development the way that it is. It is undeniably easier to modify older content than it is to create newer content. It would be why all current content has been "short and sweet" leaving players with a sense of hunger for more. Less creative minds and time devotion to a product is a tell tale sign of project commitment elsewhere.
However, I simply cannot imagine how I could play this game anymore if I didn't raid. Plain and simple. The world used to be immersive. This immersion is being destroyed in the name of convenience, whether that be the "questing on a rail" paradigm to the new cata zones and old world revamp, the "game lobby" play style of the LFD and BG queuing system, flying, etc...the list goes on.
The most memorable times for me and a lot of other players I know were little things like epic PvP battles that ensued at dungeon/raid meeting stones, raids on opposing faction cities, another faction camping a flightmaster or quest hub, downing a world boss. These things now are either non-existent or exceedingly rare.
Why? Because outside of guildmates, NO ONE knows each other anymore. There are no "server communities" anymore. Just look at realm forums...they used to be extremely active. It was a fun way to communicate with others on your realm. Now they are glorified guild recruitment forums. The reason for this is because a vast majority of end-game outside of guild raids is instanced content done with complete strangers...all in the name of convenience.
Blizzard needs to get back to something where there's a REASON to get out and explore the world and more importantly, a reason for players on each server to do things together. They know how to do this, much better than I, because they've done it before. Somewhere along the way they decided to pander to the instant gratification crowd and lost their mojo.
Was looking at some of the firelands weapon art, I gotta say, if there's a blizzard department that's kicking ass right now, it's the art department for sure.
There is a problem though, I noticed that a lot of the blacksmith made weapons of 4.2 use either models already used for that type of item, or models that we've seen quite a lot of. They may be just placeholder models, but if they aren't, I wonder why they didn't bother to at least use a item model from 4.2, or just make a new model for the weapons.
But I guess time and resources disallowed it if the models stay the same, but a lot of people generally use those weapons, might as well make them like nice and unique, but I understand 100% if that just is not possible.
I personally think that BC and WOTLK were the best xpacks gear wise, it seemed as though there was tons upon tons of effort put into making unique weapons and gear. It felt like much effort was put into making weapons unique and flat out cool. In cata many of the new weapon models dont seem as well thought out. They have lost there shine and beauty that i enjoyed so much. Sure there are definitely a few sweet new models, but if you go back and look at BC and WOTLK, in my opinion, there is no room for comparison. (ESPECIALLY PVP weps)
I've been playing (and paying for) WoW faithfully now since 2006 and presently that game has never been more disappointing to me. I just don't like the path the devs are taking for WoW. It really does feel like they just stopped caring about content and are looking to milk its customer base with a new monthly Blizz store pet/mount or this new upcoming "Premium" account feature.
Anyone remember when Age of Conan was such a threat to WoW? Two days prior to AoC's release Blizz finally caved in and allowed PvE->PvP server transfers. I am looking forward to what kind of trick/ace up the sleeve they try for when Guild Wars 2 or SWTOR comes out. Unlike AoC, GW2/SWTOR will cause a direct impact and people will be jumping the WoW ship left and right.
And I think this is where my biggest problem comes into play...Where is the engaging storyline?! I don't know if I have missed it, but I feel like the epic storyline for this expansion is somewhat lost. Where is the continuing threat of Deathwing? Sure, he torches a zone every couple hours at random, but what are the repercussions of that other than a nice Feat of Strength to show off that, indeed, you stood in the fire.
I feel as though Deathwing is ignoring me while I sit in Stormwind....he torched that, too, but I feel no threat that he will return to end my days. Why isn't he launching more attacks against the Horde/Alliance? I feel as though I should be on high alert that he will return, but instead i just mount up on my Dark Phoenix and fly around in circles until it's time for a raid.
Wrath is over. The Lich King is dead. Deathwing is coming to eat you, and I thought the Horde/Alliance fighting was supposed to escalate this expansion? Why do I feel like I don't hate the horde anymore? Why isn't the new, ruthless leader of the horde trying to purge the Alliance?
Where is the storyline in BWD? I don't remember any quests explaining to me why I am returning there to end (yet again) the threat of Nefarion (please tell me if I missed something!). I just feel like WoW is missing the epicness that Ulduar contained. Who could ever forget that instance?
I feel sorry for anyone who didn't raid during Ulduar, because it is, without a doubt, the best instance that Blizzard has ever created. The storyline? Absolutely fabulous. Boss encounters? Amazing. Varied. Hardmodes actually felt like they fit, rather than just flipping a switch and suddenly being on hard mode.
I know Blizzard has said this before, that they didn't like actual mechanics in a fight turning it into a hardmode, but overall, I think the community vasty prefers this to "flipping the switch." You push the red button? You better watch out. You kill XT's heart? He's going to get mad. You better bet leaving those watchers up is going to make Freya more powerful. There were consequences in Ulduar. Your actions determined how boss fights played out, something that I dearly miss.
So I know I have rambled on a little bit, and I'm sorry about that. I think my main points are:
Cataclysm seems to be missing the story. Whether this is because many storylines have started and been unfinished, I still an emptiness in terms of story that I have never felt from WoW before. Bring back the storytelling that you told in the revamped 1-60 Azeroth.
Engage me to WANT to stop Ragnaros before he burns the world to ashes. Deathwing doesn't feel like a threat anymore. Yep, he basically tore the world apart, but that's about it. With the upcoming death of Ragnaros (for real this time?), will that weaken Deathwing? Will we know that it has weakened Deathwings efforts?
How about losing Sintharia (Sinestra)? What is the long term effect on Deathwing? Why did I care about the possibility of ending her in the first place? Did I miss the storytelling aspect of this in the first place?
PvP: The suggestions above are absolutely fabulous. Most vanilla players lament on the fact that World PvP is basically extinct...some great suggestions from Fibrillation to fix this. Take it a step father. "Oh no, the horde is trying to expand territory further. Here are some alliance mages for a port, now go fight them!" An event taking place a couple times a day, at peak hours.
Get some horde/alliance rivalry. I miss it.
Firelands. So basically the gripe with Firelands is that you promised us more than one raid with 5-6 bosses per raid in every patch. What happened to this model? You have mentioned previously that you decided to push all efforts into making Firelands a single, cohesive patch/storyline, which is fine. 7 bosses, also fine...for now. I have not played any bosses in Firelands, but I am concerned with the "revolutionary" abilities that you have described earlier.
Hrmm. Am I missing something? Sure, Alysrazor seems revolutionary (and quite fun), but I'm not really seeing it from any other boss. I don't see how climbing up ropes to the spider bosses web is "revolutionary" (or whatever word you used to describe it in the 4.2 preview).
Basically what I'm seeing is that players are scared. We're scared that you are forgetting about WoW. "Why only 7 bosses? Do you not care about WoW anymore?" While I don't think this is true at all, I totally understand how many other people can feel this way.
It feels like the raiders are not getting what we were promised. Don't get me wrong. I love that you are adding daily quests for more casual players (let me remind everyone, casual players who don't raid make up probably 60% of WoW's player base, if not much more), but please don't promise more raids than you end up able to produce.
I have not seen Firelands yet...I don't usually play on the PTR. However, I still feel that this response is appropriate. I want a more engaging storyline involving Deathwing.
Remember how much we interacted with the Lich King? Yes, probably too much, but I felt as though I interacted with him and truly understood him and why we needed to bring him down. Deathwing? Yep, he torched my city. Is that reason enough? Where is his storyline other than that he is big, scary, and angry? The big, scary bosses hardly seem that scary this expansion. Where is the old god that is coming to eat me ;)
At little birdie once told me that every graphic art asset you see in WoW was originated by hand. That in itself is pretty impressive. So of course they like to "reuse" art assets because they expend a tremendous amount of resources on them. I don't have a problem with that at all. However, I do believe that they can still leverage a lot of the existing artistic assets into new and original content rather than re-hashing content in the name of development convenience. WoW has a vast array of players that began playing the game at different times.
As an example, ZA *may* be completely new to a certain sub-set of players...however there is another sub-set that has done ZA a countless number of times before that. It used to be on a 3 day reset similar to ZG, mind you. If they're going to do a rehash, ZG is the way to do it. ZA's release was just a complete joke to me, though.
The content release or lackthereof is very troubling to me as a subscriber. They said that they had most of the art assets in place for an Abyssal Maw instance, yet they scrapped that and gave a downright lousy excuse for doing so. Six months into the expansion we're getting a 7 boss raid instance and a daily hub...that's it. In Wrath we got Ulduar which to this day is hailed by many as the pinnacle of WoW's raid development.
It was very obvious that Ulduar was a labor of love and the attention to detail and fun it provided to many made this readily apparent. Its hard to put a finger on it but you could just feel the quality. While I love the game and will continue to subscribe, Blizzard is wittling away at the "goodwill" that they've established with me, and that's because, at least from my perspective, I'm not getting the bang for my buck that I'm accustomed to getting in terms of content amount.
I think the game is as polished as it's ever been, and I'm pretty happy with it, but the lack of new content compared to other releases is starting to get a bit noticeable.
That said, my main issue with the game is the ridiculously overpriced charges we pay for some of the optional services, particularly with server transfers & faction changes for more than 1 toon. It's not fair in my opinion to expect people to pay these ridiculous fees when multiple toons are involved. I can understand some charge, and I'd even be fine with the rates today if they only applied to 1 toon, but to pay well over $100 to transfer multiple toons isn't right.
The fact that Blizzard hasn't relaxed the server transfer & faction change rates when multiple toons are involved, coupled with the reduced content and the diversion of resources to Titan sort of leaves me with the impression that Blizzard's attitude is "let's milk this while we still can".
I'll add my .02 since every voice matters. I'm just unpleasantly surprised that since the population of WoW has doubled since TBC, the amount of content being released has not also increased greatly. I just don't play anymore because there's not that much to do for long-time players who have seen most of it. New players, definitely, will have an astounding amount of content before them, 100s of hours of fun, Lucky them!
Not enough 5mans, not enough quests, ZA/ZG is disappointingly heroic only, The Abyssal Maw 5man and raid are MIA, Tol Barad BG is an embarrassment. Archeology is deeply flawed.
Missing long-promised features, and insisting the default UI designed for MC raiding is adequate for BWL/BOT. It's not and needs a major overhaul, like the rest of the visuals. Graphics often more appropriate for Unreal Tournament from 2000, constant clipping from your own gear, nevermind the environment or others, and in Cata constant cutscenes with no custom animations only enhance the cringing at the ancient engine. When Calen 'delayed' Deathwing? That looked terrible. The visual design is cartoony, which is great. It's still really old and low-poly and low-res.
Blizzard often says that people only post when angry and rarely when content, which I suppose is true; however, I fall into a category in which it takes quite a lot to get me to post on these forums. This is a great game, and a great company, but I am troubled by what I've seen.
I've been playing MMOs for the last 12 years and WoW since day one. The question that the OP posed almost seemed silly to me at first, since it's clear from relics like Ultima Online and Everquest 1 that MMOs are fairly sustainable, even with modest subscription numbers, and that in fact no development team is "done" with their product.
However, many of the replies to this thread make a world of sense to me. We are discussing a behemoth of a game from a company that leads the MMO genre... or at least it ought to. They can pull from talent pools incredibly deep, they have the resources to make this the best darn game in the genre, and yet it is stagnating.
One (or quite a few, I'm sure) poster before me has pointed out that there is little innovation going into this game, and that's exactly what I feel. Why are we sitting around pointing at other games' improved features for months/years, and yet WoW is predictably the same? Where are alternative objectives, new-for-the-genre features or systems (some of which, to WoW's credit, have been implemented here and there in the past), alternative playstyles, ways to customize the experience, ways to build community, etc.?
How about: dance studio (hey, something for FUN), path of the titans, talent trees that add flexibility (you make everyone take 31 points in a talent tree and call that an improvement?), customization of _anything_, engaging lore that is woven through the game, that's just what the Blizzard team suggested. I look at what other games in the genre are adding at every iterative patch, and it blows my mind why WoW isn't keeping pace, or even trying.
The criticism is coming out precisely because the community knows WoW is capable of a lot more, and used to produce a lot more in the way of interesting content and design. My pessimistic hopes that either subscriber atrophy or a competitor's product light a fire under Blizzard. My optimistic side knows that Blizzard has talent and resources at its disposal, and will push the genre and game forward as it has done in the past.
I'm sorry, but I have to seriously disagree with you on the story being in Cataclysm. I mean it started going way in Wrath.
But last we heard of Garona she attacked the peace meeting. Garrosh blamed Varian for her prescence there. Cataclysm comes and she's back with the Horde. Huh? How? Why? What happened? Where is the story for it?
Garrosh also get's us to force the Dragonmaw back into the Horde. Ok, so I suppose he wants the Dragonflight, especially the red, against the Horde to? What is the reason for bringing back this old Orcish Horde clan, the ones who kidnapped and molested Alexstraza forcing her to breed, back into the Horde?
And where is the lingering affects of Onyxia's treatement of Varian being shown in the game? Why is Danath still in Honor Hold after what Sylvanas has done to Arathi and his nephew?
So far all we have gotten is the Zandalari turned evil, thus once more making what players have done before rather irrelevant, and gotten ZG, which seems as though it might have been intended for a return, but it certainly does not push the main plots of the Warcraft story forward, and a retuned ZA which, I'm sorry, has absolutely no place except to as mount run.
We get told Abyssal Maw is cancelled because it's felt like Neptulon's story was told. Say what? How was it finished being told? Is there a novel where the conclusion was done and I haven't seen it?
I think a huge mistake was scrapping Abyssal Maw, as someone who plays this game almost exclusively for the raid content (I do enjoy other aspects, but if they stopped developing new raid content I'd cancel soon after) is the worst possible thing they could do from my perspective.
I hated raiding in wrath, both the raid themselves (even ulduar, which was an amazing raid with great encounters) and the way content was implemented. more that 8 bosses in a raid is too many and at the same time less than 10 bosses in a tier is too few. I feel T5 struck the perfect balance, 6 in SSC, 4 in TK. T11, with the exception of Tot4W, strikes a very similar balance, and it feels good. I don't get as sick of the scenery as I did in ICC, and that's good.
I was really excited at the beginning of Cata, between Blizzards stated intention to release multiple raids per tier and the heroics being challenging and requiring coordination, at least with 330 ilvls.
But then we get to the raids, and as fun and new the encounters are, the raids themselves are very bland, BoT is a long hallway with a pit and BWD is a circle, none of them have the feel of being a living, breathing environment like pretty much any of the BC raids or ulduar, it just feels like an arena to kill bosses in, but at least there are a lot of bosses and different environments.
Now there's T12, we're down to one raid with only seven bosses, that's not much content, and while blizzard may tout they are very original encounters and the heroic modes are quite different than the normals, because of the current raid lockout that doesn't matter, it's still only 7 bosses since once you're through normal modes you'll only be doing heroic modes, and the fact that there's only 7 bosses will be very obvious.
And dailies, sure having a new isle of quel'danas is great, but they're dailies, i don't think too many people really enjoy doing dailies, they do them for the gold, the rep, or the rewards, you could have made every daily quest kill 30 boars and it wouldn't matter, people would still do them for the gold/rep/rewards, sure having the quests be different is nice because it keeps it from being so monotonous, but no questing experience will ever take the place of a raid.
On top of that, no one actually likes daily quests, people like that they can get gold without working the AH or farming, or they like that it concentrated players so there's a chance of world PvP, but the quests themselves are a real pain in the ---, you feel like you have to do them every day till you're exalted or until you have all the useful rewards or else you feel penalized, and after you have your rewards you have no incentive to continue doing them.
I am a loyal customer, but I'd like Blizzard to be honest about where WoW is at right now. Maybe Titan is in the works (and of course it would be industry-breaking), but they are slowly losing my loyalty by making WoW seem stale in there here and now. The Q&A sessions don't help, and suggesting dailies is strong part of 4.2 content is not exactly a selling point.
The best references are those that aren't exactly in your face. Haris Pilton is probably a good example of this. She has no impact on any plot, and is just a funny npc thrown in for the fun of it. The "Fight the Power" references in Felwood were kind of neat, as a Gurren Lagann fan. That's the sort of thing that works.
Harrison Jones, however, is clubbing you over the head with the inept Indiana Jones routine, and it gets tiresome. I was so excited to see Brann pop up, because he's so much more a part of Warcraft.
Foremost, vanilla lasted almost 2 complete years. However, the main point is that major content patches sometimes came out every month, but always at least every 2 months until the end.
And that's the salient point to make here about the pace of content delivery. It was constant in 1.0. Every patch brought far more than fixes; in fact the devs were very loathe to nerf anything back then, let alone every patch. Every patch released something totally new to the world. And they have not done this since then, not even in BC which was the plateau point for the game as far as numbers tell it. That peak subscription number hit in LK was not the peak of development. That happened long before 3.0.
Cata has far less content. Part of where I think they may have erred is in redoing the world all in one fell swoop. Updates to the old world, if they were planning on doing them at all, should have been constant over the years, not dumped into one expansion. Everyone sees how this has ended in less production of new content. If they had been able to manage making small, constant updates to the old world over the years, Cata would have out done Lich King. For an example, see Mudsprocket in Dustwallow Marsh. But they instead spent all their dev time on content players don't care about.
The reason players don't care about the low level stuff is because they can't. They have no reasons to revisit it at max level, making all the time spent redoing the old world for an expansion seems even more bewildering. For older players like me, the idea of redoing the old world was a mixed bag anyway. We can never revisit the places, heroes, and stories which actually shaped our characters. They are gone forever. That feeling is exacerbated by an all in one patch that obliterates the world ..instead of gradually updating it over time. The effect is akin to how peoples faces change over the years. When you look in the mirror you always see the same face. It's only with time that you recognize your appearance has changed. Gradual and steady. Thats how a remake of the old world was supposed to happen.
But we got a cataclysm now. They can't publicly make statements about their disappointments with it, but I think they are smart enough to know Cata has not lived up to the expectations so far as previous expansions have.
I'd ask for an app tab, it'd get people really feeling their character if they can choose what to look like.
I'd ask for some sort of customizable housing for the same reason.
I'd ask for more character customization in general (a simple height and weight slider would be magic)
I'd ask for all those various buildings in the various capitols to be opened up, just because they'd be empty inside (every time I see a closed door in SW, I die a little on the inside)
ABOVE ALL, I'd ask to be able to talk to the other faction in ways beyond giving out personal information.
As someone who mainly RPs, I've had to come to terms with knowing that blizzard will likely never give anything to improve immersion into their game world, but as time went on, and they -got rid- of things that were immersive, I began to worry. When I saw other games adding these things as an after thought, I became frustrated.
WoW is the most lucrative MMO ever BY FAR. There is no reason they shouldn't have a lore team. There is no reason they shouldn't have some people set aside to make stuff outside of combat. There is no reason they had to hire someone who made a slap stick webcomic who's defining moment was firing a small creature out of a cannon, as head of quest development. There is no reason why, let's say LotRO should be able to push out content faster considering they are a far smaller company.
This addresses the simple point I made in the first thread. The CMs are passionate. The devs are passionate. The players are passionate. That word has been used time and again over the last 6 months by one particular CM. We get it. Find a new word to repeat to death. "Transparency" is the new corporate buzzword (and we've seen it used here by players already), just like "synergy" and "paradigm" have been in the past. These words lose their meaning when they are used time after time after time.
I am not trying to be critical of Neth or anyone on the CM or Dev team at blizzard, I'm only using this as a noteworthy example. I do not doubt that they all love and are completely devoted to their jobs. My point is simply that in my opinion the communication has gone downhill significantly in the last 6 months. So much effort is now put into the various blogs, I get that.
But now whatever answers we get come in huge waves at slower intervals. To me, they feel callous, sometimes condescending, highly calculated, and sometimes strategically ambiguous. That's what I expect from the government, who I am legally bound to give my money to. That's not what I expect from an enterprise that I choose to give my money to.
I'm not calling anyone lazy. I just don't care for the new model of communication, and it absolutely could have an impact on whether or not I continue to give Blizzard my money.
How come at the 2007, 2008, 2010 Blizzcons I attended I see on every panel J. Allan Brack sitting there as the Head Producer on every panel of which you are there with a microphone for people to ask questions so I know you know who he is. But how come we never see him mentioned on the forums or in the Q&A's of which I admit to not reading every single one, nor have I seen you reference him recently in answering about other developers.
Isn't Mr. Brack the head guy in charge of World of Warcraft with Ghostcrawler and Mr. Chilton in guiding directly this MMO World of Warcraft. Don't Ghostcrawler and Mr. Chilton report to Mr. Brack?
Why don't we hear Mr. Brack make more comments as the Head Producer.
Why do I keep getting the feeling that Mr. Brack keeps hiding.....yet he comes out of the woodwork on every panel at Blizzcon and sits in on every panel at Blizzcon.
Why at Blizzcon 2010 they answered question about the appearance Tab, and say its something we'd like to do but there hasn't been enough of an outcry by the players of the game to get it pushed up into the we are doing it now coding it now making it for next patch. or the Tabard Closet. Whom does it really take to convince to make it.
If Blizzard keeps saying, "Well, the Appearance System will take too much work." or "Well, a new class takes too much work.", or "Well, the old Talent System takes too much work, so locking it down makes things easier.", then there is no doubt that WoW will become boring and repetitive.
Rated BGs was good in concept, but Blizzard keeps iterating it to the point where it became useless for players. Blizzard seems to follow their own "philosophy" or "vision" and designs an implementation that is useless for the players. Blizzard needs to take the player-type into account -- PvPers are not the type to spend hours waiting for a group -- allow 2s, 3s, and 5s teams to queue for Random BG and Blizzard will see increased participation. Don't force Arena players to do RBGs by giving Arena players less points at the same rating. To support grinds (time-investment) rather than skill is absurd. Such decision-making is idiotic.
Blizzard needs to stop thinking everything takes too much effort, and actually go implement new Features the way the players envisioned, and not follow some restricted Blizzard vision and implements an over-iterated abomination that no one will use -- then proceed to force players to use it (such as nerfing Arena point gains to "promote" RBGs). Again, new Content is no different than old Content with a facelift. New Feature is what will keep WoW interesting.
WoW I truly believe is a victim of its own success but more importantly a victim of its mmo competitors complete failure to deliver a good product, so the on going development content and invocation has taken a back seat to keeping the cash cow running with nothing more that.
Myself and others have seen a very harsh decline of the game, from every aspect including community, customer service, content development, innovation, and a huge lack of anything good for pvp which continually gets proverbial middle finger every patch it seems.
I truly hope the wow development team gets its head screwed on straight before someone releases an actual good mmo, if you don't the bleeding of accounts will turn to an avalanche.
And to answer the OP i do feel that the game has lost some luster due to blizzard not releasing more at launch, but WoW is far from dead. The old adage still stand that "only WoW can kill WoW" if Blizzard begins to put in some more noticable effort into what the community has to say and breaks less promises. Which has cost them some subs because when you tell people that something will be there with Cata launch and then it isnt, people tend to be unhappy. I feel that WoW has around 2-3 more Xpac's before the end could even be contemplated, but thats just 1 belf pally's opinion.
I play World of Warcraft and their expansions because of their story arcs. Each has brought something to the table: A new world, new mechanics, lore that has been revisited for this branch of the Warcraft Universe. Each is rich in lore, and in all honesty, I can't wait to take down Deathwing at the end of all this! I'm a casual player, which means that I cannot get the top tier every single major patch, nor do I strive to do so.
I enjoy myself with what I can do in the time I can do it in. I enjoy going back and doing old Raids, because who said that you have to be up and on top of new content all the time? It's super fun going back because, for lack of a better metaphor, the content is a time capsule. It shows off what was offered. I still become flabberghasted when level 80's wipe in AQ40, it's a testement to the mechanics at the time of that release, and for that I think Blizzard should be proud of themselves for creating such challenging instances.
However, I do think that they've started to hit a Story snag, a 'brain fart' on what they want to tackle next in the story in this expansion. There was so much offered in the Beta for story progression, they might have had to narrow themselves down. I would like to see all the content offered in the Beta on the live servers, eventually. I do agree, though, on how things feel rushed, that they've started to put quantity in front of quality.
I'd like to see the quality be upped a bit more, and if that means we wait as a player base, we wait. Those who can't wait must start to, we've become irrationally impatient with the content coming out for this game, and we've gone on a Varuca Salt rampage, "But daddy, I want it, and I WANT IT NOW!!"
As far as the issue of them being done with World of Warcraft: I don't think so. They will continue making content and patches as long as people are still paying. I don't want the story to end here, with Deathwing. I'd like to explore the Emerald Dream, and the South Sea Islands, and finally take down Sargeras in the FINAL final expansion.
But I'll have to wait and see what they've got in store, as do we all. But, as with some who have written a response to this thread, I too feel like the money that I'm paying for this game isn't going all towards it. That's not a bad thing, but if the new MMO they're working on doesn't succeed, I can't help but wonder if the money that was used to develop it was mine, so what am I really paying for?
I don't know what goes on behind Blizzard's doors, nor do I want to start speculating, because then I'll become disappointed in what wasn't offered, in this game or any other that I might purchase from Blizzard Entertainment in the future.
I'm starting to ramble now, but long story short: I don't think Blizz is done with WoW, but I do think they've started to hit a brain fart when it comes to the progression of the story at this moment. And, as a personal opinion, I don't think they're to blame for that. Inspiration can run out at anytime. They just need to get their gears going again, I think.
4.0's revamp of the old world was great... in some areas. In others, it was, as you say, a coat of paint over rust. The rust is showing through again. Now, I know that at the very least the quest team did a LOT of work in this area, and I don't want to cheapen that effort, but nevertheless there are places that feel like the old world revamp just passed them over.
4.1 was a slap in the face. I know, overused analogy. It's how I feel, after having 'content' like the 'new' Deadmines and Shadowfang being a selling point of Cata.. we get more like it in 4.1. Is this going to become a trend? I hope not.
If you want to see how to revisit a familiar place but put a fresher spin on it, look at Portal and Portal 2. In P2, you spend a lot of time in the same facility as you did in P1, but there are enough differences... physical differences, like architecture and the decay of such... that makes it feel fresher. ZG and ZA needed this. Instead, they got some tweaked bosses and palette swaps. These zones needed to be sacked, in ruins, and being rebuilt to something greater than they were before... but instead we got the same instances with very, very, VERY minor terrain changes, if any at all.
4.2 looks promising... for raiders who hit Firelands. Anyone else? The loads of dailies may have some interesting tech or a neat story, but they're dailies. They're going to be a grind in no time. Just repeatable tasks that you bang out to get your X badges or Y points for Z loot.
And the overall story... it feels disjointed. So do the zones - which is a result of them being scattered across Azeroth rather than more thematically linked. Heck, for most of Uldum we're reliving Indiana Jones movies! Deathwing hasn't done anything to make us want to take him out. The Alextrasza thing in the Highlands? I wasn't in awe. I wasn't fearing him or hating him or anything. The 'cinematic' of their fight was so amateurish, worse than second rate... I've seen machinima authors brand-spanking-new to the craft create more engaging in-game cinematics. Cho'gall... Ragnaros... Nefarian, Onyxia... recycled. Cho'gall 'died' in the comic. But no, he's back! Rags was banished, but no, he's back... and loosely tied to Deathwing! That's story synergy right?! Wrong. It's a limp effort at best.
The best part of the story is what's going on in the Horde. I don't know if that's Metzen or not... I want to think he was behind it, willing to take some bold steps with the story, but I somehow suspect some of the real writers on the team were responsible for the - gasp - political intrigue, and he just OK'd it.
Very, very disappointing all around. I've been a player since it all began in 2004, and my account has never lapsed. I've been a fan of Blizzard for much longer. But lately... I've just been disappointed again and again.
Here we are in Cataclysm. Large patential to have major lore characters and plot lines advanced, and six months in we have seen the Zandalari tribe made evil, thus making what players did in vanilla totally irrelevant. ZG seems to have been intended for release, but the bulk of the work was already in place. However, there is no way ZA was ever intended to be back. It is the exact same raid, except for the final boss, as it was in BC, merely retuned for 5's rather than 10's.
We have seen the cancellation of Abyssal Maw with the explanation that they feel Neptulon's story is complete. Really? How so? Where is the storyline that finished it cause it certainly isn't in game.
Cataclysm also suffers from the fact that for the first six months one raid is all about a boss we killed in vanilla. Once again, what players did then made totally irrelevant. And after players killed Nef in BWL, I guess we were too stupid to go through the doorway where all those waves of contructs came from to see the BWD part just a few feet away. So the first tier's biggest raid has a "been there done that already" feel to it.
BoT was nice, but Cho'gall, a huge lore character doesn't really seem like nothing more than a disconnected figure from the world. Throne, beautifully designed, nice mechanics but extremely small.
Firelands brings back Ragnaros. Now, lore wise that is understandable and expected. It was said in vanilla we didn't kill him, just sent him back to the elemental planes. But still, with the cancellation of a wholy original raid in Abyssal Maw, there is the "been there, done that" feel to it. And sorry, how excited can someone be over Rag having legs?
The old world remake seems half done. So many zones still contain out of place old questlines that make no sense. When I did the Missing Diplomat questline a couple months ago Alliance side, me and a friend were like, umm, ok, why is this here? Haven't people in Azeroth heard by now Varian is back? And the questline ends suddenly with a block of text saying essentially you have been doing useless stuff cause the King has returned and you should go see BOLVAR for your reward. I mean honestly, how lazy is that to see it say go to BOLVAR in Stormwind for your reward? That's a total lack of quality control.
What we have seen however is two new items for sale in the Blizzard store and news that Real ID grouping will be introduced in game...for a premium. When you combine the underwhelming aspects of Cataclysm so far with those things, I am sad to say that yes, it does seem to give some credence to the opinion that Blizzard may be done with WoW as far as keeping it as an innovative game.
I see Cata as yet another attempt at fine tuning which catered to hardcore raiders who had left the game in Wrath because it was too easy. Unfortunately they didn't have anything in place for the scores of players who enjoyed Wrath 10 man difficulty - they were left homeless and adrift. Many casual time limited players could no longer do heroics due to long times spent just getting in followed by failure to accomplish anything by scores of bad players.
This game is no longer fun, it's hard at every turn and stressful and you either hate healing or love it - no more in between it seems. While hardcores keep coming back with each new content release to check it out, I don't think the same will hold true for casuals who get turned off from the game.
With shared lockouts you also elminate running the raid twice a week - which is great in some ways to lessen burnout - but without adding interesting non-raid content then there is nothing else to do but raid or pvp. This makes the game feel more shallow in this expansion than in any other.
It was also very discouraging to hear Blizzard's thoughts about the barber shop that since it was only used by a small number of players it was a waste of time to put in. That means we can never get a feature unless a high number of players will use it?
I feel this is a mistake and that it would be better for the game to have several different smaller features that perhaps each one only appeals to a small number of players but when taken as a whole they are appealing to many people who are looking for something fresh to do besides raiding two nights a week, doing dailies if you can still stomach them, and logging out to watch a movie or play other games.
I really think if you want to keep people playing WoW and not Rift or SWoTOR or whatever other new game comes along then you really need to create fresh new stuff and get over the whole 'get everyone to raid' mentality.
The reason my friends are off playing Rift is not only due to 'game too hard' but also because 'game too boring'. In Rift they can level up characters with interesting combinations of skills. There's nothing new in WoW especially if you can't or don't want to raid.
I think the Blizzard attitude of game is hard, suck it up has driven away players and many of my friends, and now they seem to be backpedalling with nerfs "oh we planned that all along" to try and staunch the bleeding without ever saying they screwed up and apologizing.
This has pissed me off more than anything else this expansion. I don't think tossing nerfed old has-been content to the wolves will work either.
Bottom line - I love WoW and want it to succeed so I can keep playing but I'm very concerned about the lack of development of anything outside of one raid and a daily hub and pretty worried about Blizzard's attitude - Neptulon's story good enough my arse!
Let me say what I think. Blizzard had a decent idea with Cataclysm as a whole, but should have ignored 1-60 and just devoted their energy to 80-85. There never was a problem with 1-60, everything was just fine. They could have just tuned the quests to require killing X less of Monster Type A or making Item B drop more often, and increased the XP yield.
There is no need to have to pilot a fleet of vehicles just to get through the Goblin starting zone for example. There's no need to devote the energy to this un-needed skewering of 1-60 zones by introducing flying and supposedly "better" quest hubs. The energy should be devoted to the quality of dungeons, daily quests, raids and even PvP.
4.2 is pretty much why I've decided to liquidate everything I have on my characters and share the wealth with friends and family.
I've been playing since BC, and for two expansions now daily quests have been shoved into our faces.
There will never be some "awesome quests" this game could ever offer. They will always be "get this" "kill that" or "hey drive this cool machine for 20 seconds, but never again". Not to mention, dailies are -not- alt friendly.
Either way, Blizzard will not be done for a long time. They've only recently started to really milk the game for what it's worth, by adding all the payable services. As long as people are hooked to this game and throwing away money for flying colorful mounts, I see it lasting for a long time - But not in a good way.
Blizz really needs a dedicated lore team, rather than a bunch of heavy metal heads who's idea of lore is "Wouldn't it be awesome if..."
Agree completely with poor story for this expansion.
The zones are very disjointed and stand alone. In wrath, Arthas was there at every turn, in every zone, and his presence was felt in many instances. Similarly, the burning legion's presence was felt throughout Outland, even though Illidan's was only present in select places.
I shouldn't HAVE to do research to find out why I'm fighting the villain of a video game. RPGs are supposed to do that for me. Anyone remember what those last 3 letters in MMORPG stand for?
These types of quests pertaining to Deathwing are not in this expansion like they were in Wrath. Remember Mathias Lehner in Icecrown? I agree with the OP here. Blizz seems to be on autopilot these days. It seems more and more like they are just adhering to a formula and touting it as "new and exciting!"
Cata's real problem IMO is that it was 5 levels not 10. An extra 10 + an extra zone at starting along with 1-2 more dungeons. This would have slowed and spread out peoples leveling and content finishing more than any bonus raids would have managed.
Blizzard was a great company and continued to produce great things even before Vivindi Entertainment acquired them.
There were some great prequels to World of Warcraft that went into the history of what happened. Those were amazing games and had great lore.
On November 23, 2004 World of Warcraft was released. This was the 10th anniversary of the Warcraft Franchise.
It was an incredible game and I still remember how awe inspiring it was the first time I went into Ironforge or Stormwind. We got to play with WoW for 3 years till Burning Crusade came out in January 15, 2007.
This was a great expansion and like the original had awesome quests and incredible armor designs and dungeons. You could get as much or as little out of this game as you wanted as there were so many things to do. It had some great lore and quests.
All this changed in July of 2008 when Activision gobbled up Vivindi.
November 13, 2008 Wrath of the Lich King was released. It made the game more "friendly" by doing away with those "long boring honor grinds" to get access to dungeons and raids. It also made it much easier to level up alts (which is good as I am an alt-a-holic) and to gear them up. The dungeons and raids were fun but soon became obsolete as newer gear in dungeons made the "older" ones obsolete.
Up to this point there were NO PvE to PvP transfers. If you wanted to be "hard core" and level up on a PvP realm you had to deal with the gank fests and pure hell. But if you made it you could continue the cycle of abuse and torment those leveling up as it was done to you. Suddenly for $ you could transfer from a PvE realm to a PvP one.
You could then change races and a wide variety of other things including BOA "leveling" gear that was better then anything else in game at that level.
On December 7, 2010 Cataclysm came out. In this we could buy new mounts and fly in the old zones. This took away a lot of the feel of this world as you no longer had to worry about the NPC's in a certain zone. Just fly over them! It no longer became this mystical world of adventure.
I came over to this game from Star Wars Galaxies when SOE decided to ruin that game to make it more "iconic and Star Warsy". (Those who remember how awesome it was before the New Game Experience know how angry a lot of people were at them for ruining their game.)
I see WoW going down the same path. I feel that Activision is milking this game and basically living off the past awesomeness of this game to keep things going. They are providing what feels like just the bare minimum effort to get by. That troubles me.
Star Wars The Old Republic I think is going to give Activision a much needed kick in the pants to make them either put more emphasis on this game or just watch its subscriber base leave to go to a game that from what I have seen so far has worked very hard to build an immerse feel that this game once had.
What's bugged me about Cataclysm is -
1. the number of places female characters are left out. Many, many types of NPC in Cataclysm zones appear only in male variants for no apparent reason. This is a niggling one but it's bothersome. Maybe Neth can empathise with that! It's a little jarring and alienating. I'm not sure if it was a time-saving measure or what, but it's pretty common in the revamped and new zones.
2. features that don't feel finished being passed off as fine despite glaring flaws. Archaeology and, especially, the Guild XP system are what come to mind. I don't really understand how anyone can say they're proud of the guild progression system - at best it seems like some kind of timed reward dispenser, at worst it's hellish burnout material as your guild tries to keep gaining XP even though you're not having fun grinding heroics anymore, or a lingering sore spot of resentment as other guilds get perks for free for being huge.
THAT is what I'd think of when people say Blizzard is "phoning it in." The worst part is the "we are proud of the such and such feature" responses. If they'd said, well, these systems have really significant shortcomings but we were really pressed for time from biting off more than we could chew with Cata design and world revamps and wanted to ship so people could stop being bored in ICC then okay, sure. That sounds reasonable to me. But proud of those grievously flawed systems?
That said, at the end of the day the big killer for me is not enough stuff to do other than run the same old dungeons over and over, and I don't feel like that has changed much at all over the course of WoW's lifespan. Content updates have always been slower than people would generally like, and I definitely feel Cataclysm has overall the best and most entertaining quest lines and dungeons ever seen in the game. It just could have done with more of them, sooner. :)
Thank-you for reading our posts, Neth! I hope your candle keeps shining bright for many years to come. You are right that at the end of the day all the criticism is because we love the game too.
This...1000 times this....lol but seriously....WTB burning crusade, I may have been middle teir and only did a few bosses in BT, but seriously, the feeling was epic the challenge it was to get raid PUGS together and the 30 minutes it took to make a group made the heroic more worth it, and....lets face is 9/10 times it still takes a 27-30 minute que as dps... so... wtf was the point of the dungeon finder? lol, it helps lowbies, but at 85 it's nigh worthless... not to mention, the community was so much better in BC due to having to build relationships and run heroics with a certain group or not get to run them at all.... WTB the quality of BC again....
The game has never had a single microtransaction until the pets that were introduced in wotlk. I believe when those pets were introduced that blizzard was testing their plan for how they will deal with rapidly declining subscriptions.
I think we are seeing that plan implemented now. Maybe it is working for them, because all I see anymore is tons and tons of pets that people bought from the blizzard store and the recent update that made pets remain out when you summon them was to help out their plan.
It might not be working as well as they thought, or it could be that subscriptions are beginning to decline exponentially.
I know one thing: the community is indeed decline exponentially, you can deny it all you want but take a look at the community from the light and you will see. When a community declines in a community based game, subscriptions are bound to decline as well.
The problem with 4.1, was that it was nothing new.
The problem with 4.2, is that it's tiny, and people don't want another daily quest hub.
Yes. 3.3 was a year long, but don't forget, alot of people were getting really restless, and were generally just waiting for the next expansion.
The game has lost any sense of anything other than raid grind and arena grind. And even then the raids are uninspired lore wise, and the pvp is unbalanced as hell, revolving more around having one of the small handful of optimized teams, more so than real skill.
It's not about difficulty, difficulty is fine. It's about them doing a poor job at maintaining that you're playing a world, that the dungeons are rehashed content, that you don't feel that the bosses are really a threat.
Oh yes, yes. I used to spend countless hours jump-climbing and using noggenfogger to reach places 99% of players never knew existed. I'd send my pet down this or that path with Eyes of the Beast (something else I miss badly) just to see if I could survive and where it might go. What might be on the other side of the steep cliff or beyond that thicket of trees? I loved finding out.
I was very sad when exploration was curtailed. One by one my favorite spots to explore were blocked by subtle terrain edits and word was people were being banned for just wandering; for finding a different kind of pleasure in the world than that intended by the designers.
Five things sum it up.
1. Deathwing where are you? We need a bad guy to kill. You are an absentee bad guy. You came by one day destroyed some stuff and then went into hiding.
2. Shared lockouts. Having a ten man raid roster can be a pain. It was nice running 25 mans, and then being able to do a ten man if time allowed. If the ten man raid didn't happen, oh well.
3. Healing. Some good some bad, a few of the healing specs feel undone, i.e paladin mastery.
Triage lasted the first week of heriocs, not there anymore. This subject would take alot longer to go into.
4. Once you hit 85, the thing to do is sit in the que, Tol Barad dailies are ok, but that whole zone should be a PVP zone.
5. Archaeology. That whole proffesion makes a guy want to drink. And once that mood passes, all four of my dig sights will be on the 4 corners of the map.
Wow isn't done with 2.0, just some really bad judgement calls got made.
With all due respect to the blizzard developers and people working at blizzard: how can we believe promises like this anymore? Time and time again we get excited about relatively minor yet exciting things they announce, from flying combat in wintergrasp, dance studios or even things like instances such as abyssal maw. However when the full priced expansions and patches our subscriptions pay for roll around the promises just feel empty and hallow when they are cut for "more important things" such as daily quests or the content they were planning on releasing anyway
At what point does the bell ring hallow?
There really has to be a change in the way content is being put out each ptach to be honest. It is always class "balance" check, raid(s) check, new gear check, a few new mounts and pets check, achievements check. Its the same thing with a new coat but the same formula. I want Blizzard to come with something more different. I really want to see new features being added to the game to make those moments where an individual isn't raiding they can do that instead of just farm herbs and grind for something. Something unique is what I want. Hell I'd sacrifice a whole raid tier for an entirely aesthetic patch with new features.
The game may be just kill mob X or player Y to you, but it's suppose to support the Warcraft franchise and it's not doing that. The story is not being played out in the game. Many elements of an expansion get talked about like how it will advance the story, and Wrath and now Cataclysm are seeing things that were talked about not come to fruition. This is one of the main reasons a lot of people are becoming discontented.
Yeah, if fighting the same bosses, except for the end boss, means that it's "new", well, somethings wrong. And yes, it does make what we did irrelevant. The entire storyline from the Zandalari was about how peaceful they were. Now they are following the path they hated.
And does this "plot twist" take precedence of Kul Tiras appearing finally? Of Danath coming to confront Sylvanas? Of explaining why Garona and the Dragonmaw are back in the Horde? Sorry if I want to see the story actually advance.
I am NOT having fun anymore. I hate healing, I can't stand tanking, and I'm sick and tired of logging in only to do TB dailies, and wait in a 40+ minute queue.
Like many I've been here since day 1, I've gone through all of the changes and I have NEVER once felt this kind of frustration and dislike towards the game...and there were some doozy changes back in the day (shammies, locks, pallies).
My feeling is this....Blizzard decided to make a choice on the direction they wanted to take the game...and that choice excludes my play style, and because of that I no longer feel this game worth the monthly fee. I like many many others have decided to move on to another game that offers me the ability to feel I'm involved.
I still love Blizz, I will still support their other games (woot Diablo III)...but my time here with my chars in WoW is over. They've made their choice, forcing me to make mine.
Well I like the game but I take time to post because I like enough to care. I know friends who quit and others who simply don't play anymore and moved on. Though while I may not speak for anyone other than myself the impressions I see can be well..
Too many people sit AFK in Ogrimmar. Far too many people in the cities doing nothing. I'm sure they are pretty bored. I see that day after day after day after day. I haven't logged in for 3 days so far. Browsing the forums is of more interest right now.
I have to say that I agree with the OP. I haven't cleared the current raid content, I became much more of a "casual" player than I ever have been before - but that doesn't mean I am not watching and wondering as to what exactly is going on up at HQ.
The release of the expansion was rushed - it was great, I love it, I had a lot of fun going through the quests and feeling involved - and then all of the lore and the changes stopped. Same old same old grind. The release of a horrific female Worgen (my opinion, but many others share it), abysmal character customization even for these new races (Blood Elves and Draenei have far more options than the Worgen do). Holiday quests not being updated to the point where the questgiver is said to be standing in what is now a destroyed part of Stormwind, probably floating face up in the water?
So, I roll an alt and level a few more characters. A few areas have some awesome new questlines - most are either unchanged or very slightly altered in the overall trajectory of the leveling experience. Having fun leveling, sure, but I think I was expecting a little more out of the Shattering, especially with Deathwing flying around and torching the world. With four 85s I can honestly say that I have never seen him, ever. I know some people have, sometimes more than once, but I never have. And at level 85, unless you are lucky enough to be burned alive by him in passing, the story is pretty much done for that character while you grind the same rep on every toon, over and over.
Also, the Horde storyline in Silverpine was especially good, I give huge props to whoever thought all that up - but since my questing in the level 10-20 bracket I haven't seen hide nor hair of either Sylvanas or Garrosh, not to mention Vol'Jin and Lor'Themar being completely left in the dust, and Baine Bloodhoof simply stepping up to lead the mighty Tauren... Into whatever it is they are doing these days. It was so exciting at level 10, but 75 levels later I have no idea what has been going on lore-wise in this regard and it really took away some of the depth of that storyline.
I appreciate that there is a lot going on, and I know that there is a lot being done. However, I see the developers backpedaling and stalling and making excuses. It really isn't up to me if what is being done is "good enough" and seeing as how I am still paying to play it would appear my basic needs are being met - but I wonder if the people who are controlling these changes and decisions are asking themselves, as the imaginative powerhouse that keeps this game alive "Is this good enough for me?"
This next patch is going to be the deal breaker for me. If Fireland's is only going to hold 7 bosses for an entire tier then it better live up to the expectations of previous tiers that were also built around a small number of bosses.
Don't know how much longer I can hold up with the whole cancel-resub 6 months or so later routine. As others have said, this game is really starting to show it's age. The next expansion really needs to offer something new. Whether it a graphical overhaul, or something as simple as player housing.
I too have played since the beginning. Due to the constraints of my schedule, I felt like I was on the outside looking in during the original game. During BC, the game got a bit more inclusive and it felt like a positive trend to me. During Wrath, accessibility peaked for me, and I finally felt like I was getting to play the same game everyone else was. That was a good feeling, I had a lot of fun during Wrath.
And then along came Cataclysm, and the door was slammed in my face. Now I'm back on the outside, looking in, or on as others play the game that I can't.
Except that this time, the game is 6-7 years old, and I've done everything else. The game isn't new anymore, and the stuff that really held my interest during vanilla isn't too exciting this time. I still have some fun leveling alts. A thin, spare, worn out sort of fun, but still some, but it's not what I was hoping for.
I'm not going to cancel my accounts (two), but like Shadoewraith, I really feel that the game has been taken in a direction that is totally at odds with my abilities and desires as a gamer. I share his feelings of frustration and dislike, most especially towards the group content, but the character mechanics changes and the ugly, crude social engineering of the guild perk system haven't endeared me to Cataclysm either.
This isn't really my game any more, and that's disappointing. Disappointing enough that I will be watching the direction of the game closely, and may well choose not to spend money on 5.0, whatever it might be.
I'm not really going to talk much on villain exposure, since honestly, in TBC you never exactly saw Illidian. But at least in TBC the zones had a sense of danger, each zone had their set of instances and the zones tied into their instances amazingly (except Nagrand, which didn't have any instances, but that's ok, it had a well done story).
That is one of the major failures of Cata, there is no sense of story like in TBC or WotLK. Instead you have to rely on one quest in Badlands, one quest in TH, as well as luck on ever even seeing the BBEG in the first place. Nothing really seems like much of a threat, nothing seems all that urgent, especially when you seem to "solve" a zones problems completely all on your own.
Deepholm would have done well with a raid in which you finish fixing the World pillar.
Uldum would have done well with a dungeon where you fight an egyptian themed black dragon with a timer, to prevent the giant doomsday device from going off.
TH would have done well with a smattering of dungeons about, rather than you fixing every single problem aside from Cho'Gall himself. Hell, what would have been amazing is a faction themed dungeon. One where you either fight Wildhammer or Dragonmaw Orcs.
The entire story is one big failure, poorly written, poorly executed, and other parts of the game suffer because of it.
As for myself I do feel this somewhat hollow sense to WoW since Cata has begun. I have played this game since vanilla, I have grown up playing this game. It's come to the point where I think of the game and go, "Hmm dailies, or dungeons?" The content is simply lacking.
Now with four 85's it has become increasingly irritating having to gear them all simply by instancing over and over again. Not to mention the boredom brought on by the extreme amount of linear quest lines, which although probably simplifies the game for new players, makes it boring for veterans leveling up alternatives. It is literally Hyjal or Vashj'ir, from there it goes either Uldum or Deepholm, then concludes with the Twilight Highlands. There are no quests that simply tie the world together like there were in vanilla, where you had to trek across continents in search of the Scythe of Elune for example. The world needs to be sewn together better. Currently the zones feel like their own separate planets with their own problems. I realize the overarching theme is suppose to be the tie between them, but that is simply not enough. The world is homogenized into separate little flavor packets of lore.
As for the instances, we need something fresher. Throwing ZA and ZG back at us seems extremely random in the context of the expansion overall. The aspect of death is trying to rip the world apart and we are going to put that on hold to stop some mojo-crazed trolls from starting some (supposedly) massive uprising? Where is the logic here? This is another area where the ties in the lore need strengthened.
I use to recall when I couldn't go a day without playing WoW. Now, my account can become frozen and I won't realize it till a lame rainy day. There is a spark missing from the game that it use to have, that edge of mystery that needed solved, the puzzle that needed cracked. I believe Blizzard has simply been feeding us the, "Go kill that bad guy," routine too much. We need an intriguing story line to follow, something to keep us guessing. Something new and innovative to hold our interest and subscriptions.
I'm on the fence about this expansion. Cata has left me with a sense of uneasiness. I have come to the point where I realize I don't need this game to entertain me any longer. But all the time I have spent playing it... I certainly feel as though I owe the game something; to hold faith in the thought that it can be pulled from this rut. I probably will never cancel my account. The amount of playtime however simply depends on the changes Blizzard brings with the future patches.
Dailies should never be treated as a priority. They are, by their very nature, a monotonaous grind. They are something you HAVE to do every day for an eventual reward. When they made an Ulduar boss a weekly raid, it demeaned the whole place, and made a fun encounter thoroughly tedious.
I am very disappointed with Cata. My major problem with the expansion is how linear the questing is and how a story is spoon fed to you. In past expansions, when I got to max level, I would level another alt. Now, I don't want to because the leveling experience is exactly the same.
No matter what class you roll, 80-85 is going to be the exact same experience and questing will be done in the exact same order. It also upsets me that it's like that with the new 1-60 questing. If it was only 80-85, I could just put that on the back burner and focus on the lowbie zones. The problem is, Cata is an expansion that hit virtually the whole game, with exception to Outland and Northrend. It's like you can't get away from it.
I'm not saying that some of the new quests aren't awesome. Some of the new quests are great. I just hate the linear formula they used. I miss random quest givers. I miss being able to get the red quest that is 10+ levels higher than your current level, but with the help of a high level toon, you can get that nice quest item.
I miss being able to hop around a zone to quest, instead of having to follow a strict questing path. I really hope Blizzard moves away from this new ultra-linear questing.
The only positive thing I like about Cata is I'm glad they buffed lower level dungeons and cranked up the difficulty of instances, compared to how they were in Wrath.
Now, looking back at my entire time in this game, my experience doing the hunter quest was by far the most satisfying achievement I've made... and its something I still remember like it was yesterday.
Winterspring in particular stands out in my mind. I had attempted Mr. Winterspring (my last demon) at least twelve spawns, though many of those I had to share with other hunters.
My record was 12x dead, dead, dead, etc.
I finally realized one mistake I was making. When I kite, I use the mouse to move and my left hand to jump and shoot. But my Major Mana Potion had always been on the sidebar. To drink it, I have always, without thinking about it, moved my left hand over to the arrow keys to take over movement, allowing me to click the potion icon with the mouse. Then I had to move my hand back to make the next jumpshot.
This explains why I would lose him when drinking mana.
So one night I moved the potion to my number 1 key.
Anyway, he spawned, I cleared my path, I talked to him at the southwest corner. And I'm really proud of myself, I kited him so well, up onto the road, around the bend to the west. I drank my potion without a hitch. We ran by a mounted tauren and I thought "well that's that"....but the tauren just watched us go by, bless him! When Artorius got under 20% health, he slowed down a lot, enough that I had run quite a bit out of range when I finally noticed how far he was. So I panicked and ran back into range and tried to shoot him down.
He dotted me.
I died. Within a second of my death, he died to my sting.
When I returned to my body a minute later, his corpse had disappeared. No head to loot. He did not return to his spot at the base of the hill.
I was a sad girl who was so horribly sick of this demon.
The next morning (Saturday), I got up early to check on the demon. He finally showed up about an hour after I got there, so I quickly cleared the path up to the road and waited for him to swing back around.
My first attempt I was really shocked how fast he gained on me.....I kept him away with concussive shot, but it seemed he was running MUCH faster than ever before!
.......then I noticed I didn't have aspect of the cheetah..... *blushes*
So I feigned and reset, so grateful that I hadn't got dotted. The next attempt turned out to be my last. I got him to the road and kited him down to the fork. I headed west and got him down to under 20% again. For whatever reason, when he slows down like that, it really throws me off, and once again he got me with his dot.
But THIS time, he died a few seconds before I did..... I ran back to my body, rezzed, and WHEEEEEE!!!!! there was the head.
I must have set a record for failures on him. I lost track after awhile, but I think I was up to around 15 spawns.....and probably a third of those I had all to myself. So quite possibly I was up around 40-50 attempts before finally taking him down.
I'd love love love to see something like this come back to the game - a questline that you can only do without help from anyone, that not only trials the full range of your abilities (each demon tested an important facet of class knowledge and skill) but forces you to learn from your mistakes.
It was a truly EPIC all-consuming personal challenge.
That said, failure to start or complete the questline was not a game-breaker for people. There were many hunters who progressed nicely in the game without Rhok'. I never did get Benediction / Anathema on my priest - but I still enjoyed playing her.
But if you did these quests you made a special memory. Very special. I still have that bow, of course, and used it well into Kara even though I could have replaced it with a green that had better stats. It was a bittersweet day when I put it away in favor of Melmorta's Twilight Longbow, even though that was rather pretty in its own right (I did a double-take when I saw the Melmorta bow design again as a temporary legendary on the Kael fight in TK).
Even though I recently acquired Thunderfury, a legendary that cost me untold hours soloing MC waiting for the bindings to drop and hours more on my paladin collecting raw materials for the ingots, the only other weapon in my bank I cherish near as much as Rhok is the Serpent Spine Longbow off Lady Vashj in SSC - a challenging fight that severely tested every hunter that downed her elementals and kited her striders.
While I admit that I'm a completionist who'd rather see content than not, even if I have to go in after its no longer cutting edge (it took me till September 2010 to kill LK in 25's) there's simply just no substitute for knowing I've earned something rather than just got carried, lucky with RNG or benefited from a nerf. When I look at Rhok and the Vashj bow, I'm proud of myself.
Along that line, I have a lot of titles (and getting close to some new ones) but my favorite is Hand of A'dal because it took so long to get and involved so much teamwork and personal investment. I also like that it never depreciated by being left in the game. When I use it (and its the only one I do use routinely) I'm happy with the message it sends... not to other players, necessarily... but to me.
I may be shallow in this, but when I'm proud of my performance in the game, I like my character more, and like spending time in the game more.
So in closing (and thank you for reading this far, if you have) I'm hopeful that one day Blizzard will introduce another personally challenging long-timeline event that'll reward a piece or title I'll cherish for a long while. Events and souvenirs like these take nothing away from the enjoyment of others and add so much to those of us who value them greatly.
Lets do another, Blizzard. Back in 2005 it was the epic Rhok questline that brought me back for more Warcraft. Something like that, a long-term, wide-ranging personal challenge rich in lore, might be just the medicine that so many players appear to need about now.
Blizzard does not even have an excuse this time for the shoddy work and lack of content. Mid wrath when they cut out 3-4 of their 7 chapter content plan, their excuse was that they were spending most of their time developing cataclysm.
What plausible excuse could they have for such lacking content this exspansion?
for those that missed exactly what was planned for wrath.
Here is a little write up of what blizzard went on record of saying would be in the wrath exspansion.
Something to note here is that raids are not the only kind of content we're talking about, it seems. It makes sense for them to have pushed back the Firelands raid because the current raid tier hadn't been cleared by enough people. The problem is, not everyone wants to or can raid, and for those people, there needs to be other end-game content. I think for the longevity of the game, Blizzard is going to need to come up with something for those people, and it's going to have to be something other than a ginormous, grindy time sink like Archaeology. And to be honest, I much prefer Rift's artifact finding over WoW's. Rift's actually seems to promote world exploration.
There really needs to be a variety of content released, not just raid content. I think the Argent Tournament did it right, with various tiers of quests, alongside a 5-man dungeon with different mechanics and a full-blown raid (though I've heard the raid wasn't so good). It provided a great deal of content that they updated over time, and personally, I loved it.
Will the Firelands dailies be like that? Well, we're already out a 5-man, for some inexplicable reason, so I'm guessing not. Given the content they've released before (the Argent Tournament, and the Isle of Quel'danas, which also had dailies, a 5-man, and a raid) it's somewhat worrying to see them scrap content like that when they've shown themselves capable of releasing a good chunk of stuff to do.
I would actually like a more defined reason for scrapping the Abyssal Maw 5-man, because "We think the story's done" when it clearly isn't doesn't cut it. Are there just not enough development resources to justify it?
I agree with a lot of the sentiment on these posts and want to now share some of my thoughts and feelings.
I have been playing WoW since Vanilla like many of you and while I never got to experience high end raid stuff I still loved it. I was only level 40 on this Druid by the time TBC came out. (Yes I leveled up very slowly because I enjoyed exploring the world of Azeroth more than questing and would explore for hours on end). I experienced raiding in TBC and Wrath and it was fun albeit monotonous at times.
One thing that drives me away from Cataclysm is the game is honestly no different than it's previous iterations and to be honest where is the fun in that? As someone mentioned earlier the game is basically, hit end level, PvP or PvE or start a new alt. Maybe do some dailies, work on achievements and thats it. Where is honestly the fun in that? Sure it can be made more fun playing with friends or guild mates but that can only last a little bit.
Another poster mentioned how other MMO's have substance such as player housing or appearance tabs. Heck some MMO's you can build your own towns (Anarchy Online is one of them). Yet time after time Blizzard has said we don't need those things as they don't offer anything to the game, well maybe not to you but to us the players it would.
When you compare WoW back to Vanilla/TBC/early Wrath you know what was vastly different? You actually had to participate in the community of your server if you wanted to do anything, this includes dungeons, raids, battlegrounds (somewhat), and arenas. Now the game is more akin to Call of Duty where you select what "lobby" you want and wait for a game to start.
Sure you can still try and be social in these random dungeons and BGs but who cares? You will most likely not group up with these people again. It's sad in a way that this game is becoming less social in those aspects and I've heard this game described as the Fast Food of MMO's as you can log in, get gear and log out in a relative short time.
I think all in all that WoW is on it's last leg unless the developers can do something different that isn't the same boring grind we've experienced the past 6 years. What that different is I don't know. They've turned this game into a less social game that is more of a single player experience sans raiding.
Tons of people, all of whom have played for varying lengths of time, did not all suddenly become bored at the exact same point for no apparent reason. It is Cata. We paid the same price for half (or less) than the usual expac content, and frankly, the content that is there just doesn't feel epic.
I barely looked at the forums in the past, now, here I am instead of on the game. Yesterday, I walked into the other room to see what my husband was doing in game, debating on whether or not I should bother logging on, and as I entered he got a warning that he was about to afk out. He was sitting at his desk reading a book instead of playing. He would have never afk'd out to boredom in the past. Ever.
Blizzard phoned it in! At a time when subscriptions were at their highest, with more money to play with, blizz chose to give us a rehashed, smaller, poorer expansion with cat.
Where are the new mob forms, for instance? With both BC and WOTLK part of the excitement was encountering new monsters with new abilities you had to figure out how to overcome. Accross the board in all the new zones all the mobs were same old same old.
Where were the vehical bar type quest ala TOC that you had to learn; those were fun, challenging and broke the monotony of habitual playing -- cast A, then B, then C then A again. They were almost nonexistent in CAT. My guess is they're expensive to develope so of course got the ax.
Even the music, something I've found to be epic, inspiring, and adding greatly to the game as you went from zone to zone -- for Cat; MEH...
And whereas I love phasing for dailies and not having to group to do PROBLIM, phasing killed the challenge in really hard quests. Oftimes, you'd show up, got the kill credit without knowing anything about the mob, storyline, etc. It would be just mass confusion.
At a time when cost to content ratio was at it lowest, instead of getting something bigger and better we got a token expansion.
While we do understand that you can not produce an infinite amount of content in a set time frame, please keep in mind that we are not upset about the lack of content or new features. What we (or I) are upset about is content or new features getting scrapped.
I think, going forward, when you guys decide to announce the next raid tier, a new feature, etc. please release it with the intention to not go back on it.
Only getting a small amount of content is bad, but getting less content than what was announced is way worse.
I was starting to think I was the only one that thought blizz giving up on wow. 7 bosses raid is really not enough, doesnt matter how challenging they are, either we will dow them in a few weeks or wipe to the same encounters for months, neither of those is actually desirable. I really hope blizz notices that wow is easy money for them, they just have to maintain it. If they don't I have been thinking about stopping to play wow for a while now, I might as well do it soon.
I think the world is just smaller, and that it is both the playerbase and Blizzard who share a responsibility for that. The playerbase has distilled the entire game down into a series of benchmarks and numerical calculations, and while I see the importance in doing so with regards to progression I also think it tends to take the player out of the immersive parts of the game.
Blizzard has really encouraged this to the point where they're now gating content via ilvl and provide a number of diagnostic tools through the armory. Like I said, I see the importance of these tools and numbers, but I do think they have taken the game in a direction few expected. I think a good example are how paladins and mages level versus how they did in vanilla.
Nowadays, you're like everyone else. One or two mobs at a time and dealing out high damage. Back then, it was possible to AoE level as a frost mage or protection paladin. People wrote entire guides on how to do it, and I know more than a few folks who rolled these particular classes just to experience doing so. I honestly miss that like that.
I also think they overdid the new 1 to 60 experience and the 80 to 85 content. There was a lot of talk about properly utilizing the game's real estate, and I think that was a mistake. I agree the old 1 to 60 lacked in questing and a linear storyline is a good thing, but that linear storyline shouldn't take up the entire zone.
What you ended up with, particularly in the lower levels, is a series of of forgettable, cookie-cutter quest hubs that you did 3 to 5 quests in and then proceeded to the next. The road to 60 is paved, the speed limit is a brisk 65, the highway takes you everywhere of note, and everything you need can be bought without straying from the course laid before you.
I approve of the highway, but it shouldn't go everywhere and Blizzard really needed to add in some pot-hole filled and dirt roads that lead you back into the wilderness that you have the option of exploring.
I won't rehash what has been said here anymore then I have already, but I do agree the game needs to grow out at this point. Up is important, but out is also. Stuff like the appearance tab are quickly becoming important to the longevity of the game, I feel.
In my opinion, Blizzard isn't done with WoW for the forseeable future. I believe they have streamlined and stretched out content with Cata too thinly for most tastes.
For comparsion, I look at Hollywood. They seem to be running low on ideas for movies and TV shows, so they've rehashed favorites from the past for a new generation, or copycat ideas from previously successful ventures. Is it the best of ideas and execution...no. Does it continue to generate sustainable revenue and profitably...yes. Until a new form of mass entertainment comes among and forces a change in thinking, the pattern will continue.
600K leaving is nothing to sneeze at...but compared againest the 11.4 million still playing...it's a drop in the bucket. Whether it's the The Old Republic, or maybe one just now being put on the drawing board, there has to be another MMO on the market that takes a sustainable chunk of revenue from World of Warcraft to really see dramatic change and fresh thinking. Competition brings innovation and progress. I don't doubt Blizzard's capability to face the challenge...they just need a challenger.
I'm a new player, having just started with the release of Cata, but I can honestly say I was blown away by the game, and quickly grew to love it. This was not despite the newer quests and content, but because of them. I realize the population of Outland isn't what it used to be, but 60-70 was by far the most tedious stretch of leveling for me, and I nearly quit playing because of it.
Call it personal preference, but I need to give the game designers their due here; the quests introduced with this latest expansion are snappier and more entertaining than anything that was in the game previously. The veteran players may have had a better time with a previous expansion in a particular time and place, but there's no denying that things are progressing.
I for one am very excited about the fact that Firelands will continue the Hyjal story, as it was a great bit of content from a lore perspective.
The one thing that bugged me with the Firelands content is, where in the hell is Deathwing? Has Blizzard already forgot the reason they made Cataclysm? We want revenge for what he did to Azeroth, don't we?
If you've played a bit of the twilight highlands, you would know that is not entirely true. There are many confrontations with deathwing leading to a epic battle between the dragon queen and deathwing. The problem is that his character has no substance or personality. Why does he want to destroy the world? Well he is mad. But in what way?
I liked what another commenter posted in that you could replace deathwing with a giant
and people wouldn't be able to tell the difference. Arthas was overconfident in his abilities, Illidan was contemplated almost regretful, Ragnoros was chaotic, Deathwing is ...... ?
Cata was not all it could be, compared to Wrath and BC, because the effort was split - half of the effort was rebuilding the world, the other half on new content. If you wanted as much content as Wrath/BC in the beginning, this expansion would have taken twice as long to make, we'd still be waiting. Flying in Azeroth was one of -if not the - the most requested features, and we got it...at a price. Half the levels, half the content. It was a LOT of work.
Will it be what it should be? Dunno. So far, 4.2 has nothing of interest for me, so I'm quitting. Maybe I'll be back, but I'm burned out. I'm sick to the teeth of the current 5 mans, and how long it takes to get any gear, but now it looks like if I try to raid, I have to keep running them for yet more badges. No. Just, no.
Maybe it's the community, or Blizzard, I don't know. Cata feels disjointed, and it's never really come into focus for me. The things I really enjoyed died, like Wintergrasp, and there's nothing new to really get excited about. Wrath was an epic journey, with so much to do, all of the main quests, side quests, pvp zones, professions seemed more fun, people could get a taste of raiding with the raid weeklies, there was more polish everywhere, from obscure things like the books quest in Dal, or the AT. We had epic events, like Wrathgate or Invading Undercity, that everyone talked about. Cata has nothing like that.
Some of the questing is epic, but overall, it just doesnt feel like wow anymore. I don't recall ever having to drop quests leveling, but from Wrath to BC to Vanilla, my quest log was always full. Cata is too "on a rail", and once you've done it, there's no need to return. Before, if I didn't want to do Plaguelands, I could go somewhere else. I could choose. Now, I just show up, and the game does all the thinking and navigation for me.
At least in BC and Wrath we knew where the bad guys were. Deathwing showed up, set a few things on fire, and is nowhere to be found. Oh, he might show up once every couple of months in a zone, so people can get an achievement, but that's it. We have no idea, if we do ever fight him, where the fight will be.
In Wrath, it felt like we were in actual danger of being killed by Arthas, but I've never gotten that feeling about Deathwing. He might as well be Santa Claus, for all of the effect he's had on us. And, at least it seemed like Arthas was reacting to us, as we progressed. I have this feeling, if we fight Deathwing, we'll just go to some unmarked room in Grim Batol, wake him from a nap, and loot him for Epics.
Someone said something recently that resonated with me: through Vanilla, BC, and Wrath, WE were saving the world. Now, it feels like we're sidekicks in prescripted encounters that just help out. We're supposed to be "heroes" who come to town and slay the dragon and save the world, not gofers for lore characters. The current ending of Hyjal is a good case in point. You can finish the quest by doing *nothing*. Not very heroic in my book.
I think why deathwing wasnt injected as well was because Blizzard introduced awarding EXP for doing battlegrounds.
I myself skipped almost all of the quest hubs in cataclysm and lvl'd purely off battlegrounds. So I missed all of the lore and deathwing is just a tooth fairy to me.
I've played WoW since launch, with a few short breaks to try other MMOs. Cataclysm has been a disappointment, so much so that I canceled my account in January. I've reupped for a month so that I can attend my guild's 5th anniversary party this month, but will be canceling again after that.
As a casual player with no interest in raiding, PvP, or gear acquisition, there's really not anything of substance left for me to do. There are basic features that other MMOs have implemented that WoW still doesn't have... an appearance tab, player/guild housing, hobbies, more unique professions, music systems, alternative advancement, etc.
The common thread in all of these features is that they're open-ended and sandboxy, and allow the player to make choices and take a break from combat-related progression. This is what WoW seems to be missing for me: open-ended, sandboxy features that put the "World" in World of Warcraft. As it stands, it feels too much like a dungeon waiting room and gear treadmill, in the worst way.
I read Fargo's Dev Watercooler the other day, and I appreciate the effort to appeal to casual players, I really do! But I think rather than implementing daily quest hubs (which, to be honest, get really grindy and boring, no matter how cool the quests are), I think it would be better to implement more open-ended content that all players can participate in.
Daily hubs aren't really anything new, it's just a remake of past features we've had. Isle of Quel'Danas was great the first time. The Argent Tournament dailies were okay during Wrath. Another daily quest hub really doesn't do much for me the third time around.
Don't get me wrong, there still needs to be raids for the raiders and dungeons for the dungeon-runners and PvP for the PvPers. But I'd like some world-building atmospheric "fluff" systems and community-building content of some sort as well. Azeroth is such an amazing place, and I adore the lore and the story in it. It just feels like there are no truly new features.
The one new and amazing feature that I was really looking forward to (Path of the Titans) was scrapped and we were left with the status-quo.
And yes, I am playing other MMOs at the moment, and am looking forward to GW2. I don't know how I feel about Titan yet. I enjoy Azeroth specifically, and I won't buy another Blizzard MMO just because it's Blizzard. However right now I feel very wary about supporting a new Blizz MMO of any sort.
It's because all they care about is selling mounts in the Blizzard store and cashing in wherever they can on the WoW Community. They don't care about giving us the best product they can, because they have 4-5 other multi-million dollar games they can fall back on if WoW goes down in population.
It's also a customer service thing as well, even though I know that doesn't relate to the game persay, it has alot to do with why alot of people have looked negatively upon this expansion as well, besides the storyline being redundant and boring as hell. Recycling old content is lazy.
Wrath of the Lich King was the plateau of World of Warcraft. People had been waiting years for the chance to finally face Arthas and make him pay for everything he did to the world of Azeroth, and the lore and storyline was fantastic. Also, keep in mind that they don't have everybody working on Cataclysm that they had working on the previous expansions.
I honestly think that they're trying to pinch every penny they can from this community with minimal effort being returned to make this game fun and enjoyable.
Having said that. What is Deathwing's story? I have learned a lot of the lore sisnce I began playing but I can hardly find anything on Deathwing's story. He seems like he could be a really dynamic character and I was VERY suprised to find that Onyxia used to hang out in SW.
So what's the deal with Deathwing? Why was he locked up? Why is he evil and who doeshe work for? Why did the Twilight dudes start following him and all that? Can you shed some light on this for me or at least point me in the right direction?
I want to want to kill this guy but in all honesty I can care less about Deathwing. I feel like Cho'gall would be a more worthwile kill than Deathwing because at least Cho'Gal killed some knights in front of me and thretened my life.
The game is lackluster and dry. Blizzard knows this game is going down the drains, they are fully aware of that. Yes, to the OP, Blizzard is done with WoW. Personally, my ideas on Blizzards intentions are radical, yet shocking evidence believes its true. As the previous poster said, WOTLK was the pinnacle of WoW, it went shockingly downhill from their.
Burning Crusade and Vanilla was probably the best times of World of Warcraft, Blizzard was a smaller company, cared less about money because they never knew how big WoW would get. Now I believe Blizzard is slowly killing WoW, slowly their destroying it and trying to get every last penny they can.
That is why their are these ridicolous mounts you can buy, companions, premium services. I think a big reason is Activision is trying to suck every last penny they can out of WoW. Blizzard knows WoW is dying, they have admitted their "BEST" workers have gone to work on the other MMO. Blizzard also has 2 other games they can always fall back on.
I mean re-hashing content is in itself enough proof, but not only is 99% of the content rehashed. and theirs substantially less content being released. The storylines are also re-hashed, and I believe they promised so much to get interest, only to dissapoint us when they couldnt deliver it. Its really sad, its incredibly sad when you think of it, what WoW was and what their doing to it.
Stabbing it with a sharp dagger and allowing it to slowly bleed to its death. I think its really selfish, and just mean to keep us thinking thier still caring about the game, and for us to still pay our 15 dollars a month. Blizzcon, i believe, will settle a lot of these problems, for now, I reccomend cancelling your subscription, theirs no point in playing.
Blizzard is a big company, they are making many games. Does that mean they have a set amount of people that work on -all- these games? No, they hire more people to handle these bigger workloads. It's not about talent, the things players have been asking for, don't exactly require some mystical magical talent, they require manpower, and blizzard has the money to get -alot- of manpower. You cannot debate this, if you do, then you are the blindest fanboy I've ever seen.
It's like I said before, FTP Korean grindfest, games with a tenth of wow's playerbase -should not- have way more none combat features as WoW. Smaller companies and smaller games should not have lore teams when blizzard does not. Blizzard has the power to set trends, yet they fall behind EVERYONE, and they should be ashamed of this, they really should, but they've yet to show this. They go along like everything is ok, giving crap no one asked for, and then asking us to thank them for giving us what we didn't order.
Gameplay aside, good or bad, the time I enjoyed WoW the most was when I played with my brother, sister & her boyfriend, and some local people we happened to meet in WoW. We'd get on vent and raid kara, I'd always have a raid invite, I was top DPS, and I got loot and capped my professions. The game felt harder in TBC, there was more server community (IMO), and I had pride in being a smart DPSer that could fear & seduce & CoT & banish all at the same time, toss in a deathcoil, reseduce, re-fear, and of course DPS.
Now, when I log in, I don't have time to raid. Nobody I know plays WoW anymore. I'm in a guild on most of my characters, but only for the perks.
I barely have time to do heroics. I made time to get raid-gear ready on several characters, my priest has everything out of ZG/ZA and all of the JP gear you can buy, all of the honor gear you can buy. I *could* go grind out his prof's too, but why?
But I ran out of time, summer hit, and it's just boring.
There's no incentive to log in for short periods of time, especially if I don't want to heal or tank (LFG queues / trying to find a raid wastes 20-45 mins each time).
I BECAME A CASUAL, the things I enjoyed about WoW the most I can no longer do. Grinding heroic dungeons is no fun.
As a guild leader of nearly 200 people (190 accounts/475 toons), one thing that really scares me is (and should completely terrify developers) is with only 1 raid with only 7 bosses in Firelands, with no more bosses in other raids for guilds to compete for server/region rankings for, these 7 normal bosses are gonna be cleared within a couple weeks, and the heroic bosses within a couple months... Then what?
This begs the question: Is it more desirable to pay the wages for another, or a larger development team, or to risk loosing another 600k subs?
Lets look at some numbers:
I used to work in film production on high end, big budget action movies, with massive crews and huge budgets. I remember one movie I did where the Production Manager paid 4 million a month for the shooting/production crews.
Let's say that if Blizz were even to hire so many people as to pay them 4 million a month, at 600k subscribers at $15 a month, paying 4 million in resources is still better than loosing another 9 million a month. And if there were more content, enough to keep people engaged on a steady basis, they would likely gain those numbers and more back.
Activision killed Guitar Hero in the same way. They bought it, and slowly released versions of the game with fewer and fewer songs, then made people pay for DLC songs. The core fans rebelled and said "no more." We're seeing some of that same business model being enacted in WoW, and it scares some of us to death.
Fewer and fewer things being put in the core game, but more and more 'optional' premium services being enacted.
The bottom line is that Blizzard needed to, and desperately needs to shift direction with WoW. It's not a game you can put into maintanence mode. You have to grow up and mature with your players. Right now, it's not doing that. It started to in Wrath a bit, but in a way, all it did was cleverly shadow the same game with more minor bells and whistles.
Part of what scares some of us in the community is the continued feeling of abandonment. WoW keeps moving into a position of being more of a business and only a business. While I know that in the end it is a business, a business like WoW doesn't thrive without a core customer base. In the entertainment world, when you stop feeling like you're being entertained and that you're simply supporting a business, there's a problem.
Honestly, if the game is getting too expensive to operate, bite the bullet and up the sub cost. Stop the excuses for not releasing acceptable content enhancements.
If it's a matter of generating more profit in the face of a global recession and you're worried about profit margins, suck it up. Every one of us who play this game is feeling the same thing. I'd love to get a better computer to run WoW on for my wife and I, but I understand that I can't afford it. However I know this won't happen, because you're being run by one of the reasons the video game industry is failing.
The best companies to produce the best video games have always been games made by gamers for gamers. Screw profit and lets create cool, the money is a bonus after it's done. So many times I read that the video game industry wants to be considered to be an art form. To be equated with Hollywood and movie studios. Well, guess what. One of the greatest artists ever, in fact many of the greatest composers and minds of history.... died poor with only their family, friends, and fans to mourn them.
Making a lot of money doesn't make you great, but it can demonize you in the memory of history.
I really have to disagree with you on this point. Wrath was the expansion where the lore LEFT the game.
With no attunements, there was no story set up as to WHY things were going on. Look at the Ulduar trailer and the things at the coliseum for the ToC raid. No one who had not read the novel and comics knew what was going on. This was because the peace meeting debacle was not seen in the game.
Yes, Arthas did show up a lot, but even he made no sense based on the story. The questline about his heart as well as the novel set it up that whatever was left of Arthas was essentially gone, he had no compassion left. Yet for some reason he was holding back the Scourge? Wanted us as champions? Makes no sense. And the whole "there must always be a Lich King" was awful.
To say that the scourge would be worse would mean Arthas was holding them back, but that had already been demonstrated not to be the case as he had no compassion left. And how could the Scourge be deadlier without a leader? An unorganized, leaderless mass is always less dangerous than an organized one.
We want world continuation, not just HALF a zone. We want dynamic events like the other mmo`s have/are coming out with that will affect the whole zone or even the whole game. What do we have? Crappy holidays that have BARELY been updated since 2007 and the darkmoon fair is UTTER CRAP!
I remember going there for the first time back at lvl 8, back when i thought everything was epic in this game. Even then i thought the place was a snore fest after 4 minutes. Then i got suckered into that cannon and got shot into a nest of murlocks that whooped my ass and camped it....i prefer not to think of that time....
Anyways. There have been a few events that were in fact epic like the isle, the zombie invasion, and the war of the shifting sands. ONE per Xpack? Really (well not even that, isle and ZI both happened in BC)?!?! Thats sad. We should be getting zone continuations with every patch at this point, or at least bigger/improved events.
The darkmoon fair needs to be improved, the zones need to have more frequent updates, and there needs to be much more dynamic events that provide a basis for the community to work together and get out into the world (which is basically dead at 85 and half a zone with extra dailies wont change that).
There is stuff on the horizon that's going to bring innovation and new stuff so out of wow`s current league it wont even be funny. Blizzard has never had major competition, but Bioware+Lucas arts aint no small studio like Trion or some Asian company with only half a foot in the door of north America and Europe.
Their a huge game company, with the resources to rival blizzards, and they know it, and when SWTOR comes its going to hit wow like a damn 350 million$ truck, they have openly said they want to knock wow off the pedastool. Not to mention the plethora of new advances GW2 will bring to the mmo table.
Because of my schedule I can raid once, maybe twice a week. We're nothing special. We are not leet players but we aren't nubs either. We go in, we try stuff out and we learn from our mistakes. We have been making constant progress and are currently trying to down the last bosses in BD and BOT. As far as I know we have made 2 attempts on chogall and 1 on nefarian so we are still learning.
So if we don't clear it before 4.2 there's really no benefit of going back in. The other raiders won't want to go back in and finish if they aren't going to at least be earning some badges for killing bosses. Even 5 vp badges a boss for regular BD and BOT would be better than nothing.
Furthermore, for those of us that want to earn badges outside of raiding our only option is ZA/ZG. I hate those dungeons with a passion. So people who are progressing get new content and the rest of use get to zerg recycled ZA/ZG.
I don't look at Nefarian or Magmaw or Al Akir as lore characters. The first time I'm like,"cool wind lord guy" 2 seconds later I'm thinking about the loot. I'm thinking about wether my damn shield will drop or my ring. Or if people are going to stand in the fire again.
I don't feel so epic taking them down especially once its on farm mode. The biggest one was Nefarian but it was mostly because it took so damn long for me. I want to feel epic when defeating evil minions. Its silly but its what I think MMO fantasy games should make players feel like.
I'd love to see Abyssal Maw. I'd also love to see an Ulduar/Halls of Origination style makers raid.
I missed horribly not being able to do a Vry'kul raid in Wrath when their story was so rich.
I really don't think that asking for a 10-15 boss raid(s) is too much to ask for in a patch. The content we had in this last tier of raiding was quite rewarding and Nefarian was an amazingly fun fight.
Dynamic content and character customization has always been something they've planned on doing and just keep falling short over and over and over again. After 6 years of seeing only gearing progression related content being pushed to release, and even a lot of that never getting done.... You start to wonder what's happening with the development budget in general.
I don't really mind 1 raid patches as long as there are other things too, but.... lately.... the patches have been lacking.
4.1: No raid, 2 rehashed dungeons
4.2: only 7 raid bosses omgwtfbbq, NO other dungeons, MOAR FIRE
Yeah, I know what you mean. In 2007 not long after BC was released Tigole addressed the player housing issue and told us that it was still something they wanted to do but unfortunately it wouldn't happen in BC. He seemed very sorry that it was dragging out so long since it had been something promised during beta and shortly after release.
I would have a lot more respect if they would come out and HONESTLY address the issues and give straight answers about things like that. If they were to come out and say "We know player housing was promised and worked on. However that was the previously development team and we want to do things differently so we won't be implementing it".
While I may not like the decision, I would have great respect for that type of honesty. But instead we get responses that make it sound like, well, what someone else in thread 1 said, corportate speak. And Blizzard pre merger never used to speak in corporate speak. It's why they became such a popular, and profitable, company.
Where is it explained IN GAME why Garona is in the Horde now, when last we saw of her (in the comics, not the game) she was attacking the peace meeting being controlled by the Twilight? Where is it explained IN GAME why Garrosh wanted the old Orcish Horde clan Dragonmaw, the ones who took Alexstraza captive and molested and forced bred her, back into the Horde?
There are many many other examples. The fact is the story takes place in the novels and comics (the comics being cancelled due to low sales) and the charatcers merely placed in the game world based on what happened in the printed material. But the game isn't really advancing the story.
See, you just hit on something I firmly believe. I truly do not believe people like Morhaime, Kaplan, Pardo, Metzen and them like what's going on. Poor Morhaime, he used to speak so honestly and with such conviction. But since the merger he sounds like he is straddling the fence, trying to tow the company line but trying to sort of hint at true things. A friend of mine said about his quotes from the investor call that it sounded as if he had a gun at his head, metaphorically of course.
Let's be honest, it can't have escaped their attention what happened to Infinity Ward. When Infinity Ward stood up for the integrity of the titles they had created after their acquisition, they got fired. I think the Blizzard people do not want to see the franchsises they so lovingly made be in the total control of someone who sees game players not as customers, but who has referred to as "resources".
They have a nice little model setup right now. They can produce content at their leisure and anytime they need a little extra income they can just dump another $25 mount on the wow store and make a few million. Unfortunately, I don't see wow ever having that "fire" in it again as far as innovation and design goes. Blizzard has much bigger plans than WoW (See Titan).
I'd love to offer advice on how blizzard could improve wow, but stellar ideas have been preached *daily* on this forum for the last 3 years and pretty much all of them are ignored for one reason or another.
Blizzard dropping the ball has nothing to do with players not providing proper feedback to improve their product, because players have proclaimed...loudly, what they want and countless stellar ideas and plans go unimplemented.
Blizzard has never been more out of touch with its customers than it is today. It's pretty apparent by the never ending stream of highly debated implementations that this game is no longer designed by gamers for gamers.
I will be honest. I didn't see GC's post as disrespectful or anything. To be honest I thought it was the beginning of something that is sorely needed, the defining of what the game is and what it's for.
Remember, WoW was never meant to be facerollable content. It was designed not to have the huge difficulty curve of EQ, but they still included itemization and stats that they felt was important. The game was meant to have some challenge to it and I felt GC was saying that.
Mmm... well.. somehow, I've managed to miss the boat.
I've played all the way through, and there wasn't ever a point where I felt that the content I was doing needed to be different (except in cases where there was obviously something broken). I felt that the real-world logistical burdens were too great during the original game, but I was comfortable with the difficulty of the content I was able to run with my friends (regardless of my personal abilities to overcome it).
BC was the same, there were things that were challenging, but nothing I felt was insurmountable. Wrath was easier than BC to be sure, but I still felt like there was plenty of content at my level, and content left "above" my level.
In Cataclysm though ... I'm lost. My class has changed, it's much "twitchier". That's not something I enjoy, it's necessary to micro-manage my primary resource system and to watch it very closely for proc like opportunities in order to maximize my damage. The level of attention necessary has increased. Even with extreme familiarity (which I certainly do not feel at this point, despite 6-7 months having passed), a higher level of personal attention to how I execute damage feels necessary to me. Regardless of how familiar I might or might not ultimately become, I just don't find the process enjoyable. The process of playing Tas is no longer fun.
(Nor is Tas the only character I've leveled, I had 9 characters at 80, and I've leveled 5 up to 85, and none of them offer the level of comfort I felt with them, during Wrath).
Group mechanics have also changed. Tanking also requires much more micro-management. That process might be fun for some tanks, but I think it's hard to argue that the group role is less popular now, than it was during Wrath. The Healing model changes also contribute to this.
Which is better for the game? Having a harder, more technical tanking model, that the really good players enjoy, or having a less technical tanking model, that a wider skill range finds approachable?
Beyond that dungeons have also changed a lot. Many boss encounters offer "one-shot" mechanics that allow no chance for recovery. If you screw up, you die. If you die, then the odds that the group wipes (because of you) are very high. Many of these encounters, even when they do not use "one-shot" mechanics, are also more complex than in Wrath (or at least it seems so to me). This also requires more of my already strained attention, even when playing a ranged class like a Hunter.
All these issues contribute to an increased toxicity in the community environment. Failure carries a much larger penalty, censure is swift and harsh. I personally learn by doing. No matter how many videos I watch, no matter how many times I read over the details of an encounter, it never really sinks in until I've personally done it 5 to 10 times.
Learning the dungeons (and raids) in original WoW, in BC and in Wrath was scary, but ... still fun. Dungeons in Cataclysm make me feel useless and incompetent, and that's when I go with friends, who are nice to me about it, and try to be helpful.
I agree, the drastic changes to execution certainly don't make it any easier. In theory, the wide buffs and nerfs have been addressed, but I too "gave up" trying to figure out what I was supposed to be doing since it changed so often. When I'm really sure the dust has settled, I might make an effort again.
My DK (Chitra, also on Stormrage) was the second character I chose to level. She was my second favorite character during Wrath. I knew a few better DK's than me to be sure, but I also knew a lot more who were worse. The mechanics during Wrath made sense to me, they were synergistic, they built on each other, and contributed towards self-healing (at least for Blood DPS, which yes, I know, wasn't as good as Frost or Unholy). This made a class that was very forgiving to play and a lot of fun.
Now... I feel like I'm expected to be constantly doing arcane calculations in my head regarding the speed my runes come off cooldown cross-referenced with the duration of my procs in order to maximize my damage. This, combined in with far more mobile fights which I'm expected to manage using a 2D screen in a 3D environment.
I've only been playing WoW for about a year, now, a little bit before Cata came out. I do everything on this toon, raiding attempts, pvp, mount hunting, and achievement grinding. I'm currently working on Loremaster and seeing a lot of the revamped world, (though that's not saying much since I didn't see much of it before). A few of the zones have been so good that I'll finish out the storyline even after I've got the achievement.
I'm worried what I'm going to do once I finish that, though. Spawn camp Aeonaxx some more, I guess, but that's not exactly playing WoW, is it? There have been some great suggestions for extra content on this thread that I've seen, things that could change every week or give me something else to do. Like that bounty hunting idea, even if it was limited to NPCs. If you make it a goal for both factions to kill, say, that black dragon flying around Wetlands, suddenly you get world PvP again.
I think the appearance tab is a wonderful idea, too. There's some pretty cool looking gear out there that I've never had a reason to wear because it was before my time. If it was a prerequisite to own that gear before being allowed to wear it in the tab, I suddenly have a reason besides achievements to visit old content. Even if it was limited to things I would only be normally able to wear, it'd be an awesome thing to play with.
I'm still fairly new to everything, so I haven't had the chance to become bored with WoW as some, but I can see it coming. Thing is, I don't want it to. I want to be able to come back to this game for years and be entertained. It's simple (in idea, if not implementation) little things like this that could do that. I consider myself a casual player. I don't mind patches being released just for raiders, truly I don't, as long as I have something else I can do.
Right now that's Loremaster, since I've done the rest of the (non-raid) 85 stuff. After that, maybe I'll try and track down those books for that Well Read ach. Farm Strath and Magister's Terrace for their mounts. Fish up the giant sewer rat.
Eventually, though, I'll finish all that. I hope there'll be something besides dailies to do by then.
I am a blood DK and sorta overgeared so the non-troll dungeons are practically soloable, I take the time to talk at the start of the run, ask the healer if she needs mana during the run, blue box = trap and moon = sheep, does anyone need the other captain, the dog boss, etc, etc. Here's the point tho...
To get the bag I have to queue randomly and 99/100 get people from other realms. So despite the smooth and hopefully friendly run there is noone to add to friends (and no way am I going to pay extra for a RealID friends feature) so much of that goodwill is lost to the nether. If blizz does not implement ways to counter the server community malaise the overall attitude of the playerbase will not improve.
More world PvP, world bosses, invasion events, etc would go a long way toward rebuilding the server community, alas I doubt this group of devs will go that direction.
The problem is the game has actually been off track for years. It's just been most noticeable since the begginning of Wrath which, not coincidentally, is when the original development team was sent to Titan.
In the November of 2009 interview Rob Pardo did with Warcry he was asked to name the single biggest mistake they ever made to WoW. His answer, high end PvP. He was very clear to say it wasn't because it was a bad idea, but because the game was never designed for it. They never realized that it would cause so much work and acknowldged that it affects all of the players and has given the game a schizophrenic feeling.
Blizzard's problem with WoW is they never stuck to their vision for the game. They try tried to please everyone. Well, you can't please everyone. In doing so you end up pleasing no one. And when you change a game from it's intended design path you end up working longer on things you didn't intend to ever do and end up not putting in things you did.
That is exactly what has happened with the game. Wrath just gave us a glaring example. They intended to try to correct this with Cataclysm, and I think that in part was what GC was trying to say a few months ago, but unfortunately they seem to have fallen back into the Wrath way.
Ironically something that has hurt WoW the most is the fact that it has had NO competition. Guild Wars which came out about 3 months after WoW and made by former Blizzard people has been extremely successful, but being F2P, and perfecting that model, no one was forced to make a choice they often do between subscription based games. Every other MMO that has been released has been rushed out early and been buggy. And competition creates innovation.
Regardless, as for the end game right now, to me it's getting stale. Raids, BGs, Arenas, Dailies, you can make a case for archeology and achievements but, for the most part they've really haven't added anything new to the end game since BC. There are ideas here being tossed around and some of them ain't too shabby.
Blizzard mentioned in their recent conference that they've lost 600k subscriptions and, acknowledged that players do venture in trying other mmo's and eventually returning to WoW. Well, there's a reason why people are still playing Rift. If Rift is doing a small dent into WoW's player base, I can't imagine what Star Wars and Guild Wars 2 will do to WoW.
Can label these recent and upcoming MMO's a one and done deal all you want but, if I don't see anything new and exciting come Blizzcon, there's going to be more than 600k lost. Even the thought of them adding a "premium" service to WoW which we already pay for has me disgusted. Heck, their latest Call of Duty game will have a premium monthly service for additional stat info. Made my decision to get Battlefield 3 a lot easier.
The developement of 1-60 didn't just come from no where and they may have gotten behind a bit. That's cool, you gotta give a little somewhere to get a little. But now that it's done and time is marching forward I hope to see Blizzard bring the heat with Cataclysm. There is just so much potential with this expansion that it would be silly to waste it.
I mean, we have a huge corrupted dragon that can destroy and remake land at his whim flying around. We killed his son and daughter. alexstrasza is seriously hurt and I'm sure her consort wants vengeance. Thrall is doing his best to help everyone and Garrash is upsetting Jin'do. Not to mention the Nether drakes from outland are technically Deathwings twisted spawn. They could help find their place in the world by joining the fight. And also, there is still the demon soul.
I'm honestly not fluesnt in the Warcraft lore but even I believe that there is so much there to progress the story and make us want to kill Deathwing. Aezeroth is in danger of being destroyed yet I really don't feel like it when I roam around. I feel that there is more that can be doen and if Blizzard really doesn't take advantage of this and only dishes out a few more raids and dailys come 4.3 I will be dissappointed and kinda sad.
There's been a lot of missteps this expansion. Nothing intentional I think though.
They revamped the entire classic world. New quests, zone changes, lots of phasing, heavy emphasis on story quests, and all that. Should be a new player's or altaholic's paradise. Only the made leveling so fast that hardly anyone actually sees enough of it to really appreciate it. Massive waste of time and money that still hasn't been addressed and probably won't be.
Huge difficulty jump from normals to heroics, and then again from heroics to raids. Only established raiding guilds or those connected with one can really raid that effectively, and LFD removed the primary method casual raid guilds recruited. LFD in general shrank the community enormously - the community used to be your server, now it's your guild. Making outside connections is far more difficult than it used to be.
The shift to two tiers of 5-mans and (soon) raids will help a little but doesn't address the root cause. LFD can still be great but it needs to put more power in the hands of the players - friends list, ratings, cross-server chat, etc. Right now LFD in current heroics (ZA/ZG) is the single most vile thing I have experienced in all my years in this game and I refuse to deal with it, which just makes all the DPS queues that much longer.
Archaeology. Just, archeology. It was supposed to be awesome and go with the new Path of Titans. Path of the Titans never happened for some god-only-knows reason and instead we got Fishing 2.0.
People are burned out the whole model. There's no more noobs, that's obvious from the direction Blizzard is taking the game post-cata, which seems to focus more on giving existing players new things to do rather than drawing in new ones, which is a huge departure from their past philosophy. People don't want to play re-skinned WoW, WoW in space, WoW on facebook, or WoW anything else. And this is why I think WoW's inevitable decline has finally set in - I'm sure Titan or whatever they decide to call it will be huge but right now a lot of people are tired of dailies, tired of the endless loot grind, tired of rigidly enforced group sizes and roles, and tired of being lead around by the nose.
600k subscribers lost in a quarter is huge. I know some fanboys dismiss it as nothing, but even if that rate doesn't increase, they'll lose a full 2.4 million subscribers by the end of the year. Potentially losing 2.4 million subs = huge message.
Yet, since that news, they have decided to:
- Create premium subscription in-game content.
- Scrap Abyssal Maw.
- Create a 7-boss raid tier.
- Nerf the VP gain rate to artificially extend that 7-boss tier.
- Force arena players to also do rated BG's to cap.
- Increase the cost of PVP weapons to prolong arena/RBG grinds.
- Promote a 2-month grindfest daily hub as major content.
- And so on....
They're going to get every penny they can from WoW and then dump it. It's sad, but seeing how they handled CoD and GH, we should have seen this coming.
It feels like Blizzard has abandoned the Arena community. While we're getting a revamped Ring of Valor back, we haven't seen any other maps added for about 2 years now. I'm assuming they put Arenas on the back burner because they're afraid of releasing imbalanced maps similar to how RoV was at its release and RBG's are being forced upon us.
Patch 4.2 is a huge slap in the face to Arena players who don't enjoy RBG's or have the time and resources to do enough RBG's to get Conques Point capped. They refer to the relative ease and time requirement of obtaining points 2v2's, using it as an excuse to funnel everyone into RBG's. They even made it so the .05% top RBG Rating mounts were made a RBG Win achievement to entice people into playing them. They're sidestepping the real problem and using invalid justifications.
What about the people who play on non-PvP involved servers where it's hard to find enough competant players to form a RBG team with? Many play on Low Population servers and will have to search in between the cracks to gather enough PvP'rs willing to do RBG's. Most find them boring to begin with, or at the very least, an activity they want to play casually rather than a priority. Blizzard had many other better options to adjust the time/effort vs. Reward ratio, but they decided to use it as an excuse to force people into RBG's.
I first started out excited for RBG's because it gave the player a choice. I cannot say I hold the same opinion now that I see how Blizzard "fixes" broken systems.
What Blizzard needs to do is bring back the sense of a World in World of Warcraft.
They have completely destroyed the sense of a community on a realm, LFG may be a faster way to find a group, but honestly this makes dungeons feel more like a chore for the badges then having people eager and willing to try to down the content.
People can realm switch whenever they want, (More money for Blizz though right..?) But if you had made a bad name for yourself you were stuck with it for months until you could realm switch again.. This encouraged people to be more friendly, not so much a douche, as is now.
This whole Warhammer style of guilds failed misserably, no new guild can start anymore. People are mainly in guilds for perks now, not because they are a group of people who share a common goal in the game ie. Raiding, PvP, RP..
This game should be re-names "Of Warcraft" because including World is a plain lie.
My issue is the lack of content in patches. Delivering a rehashing of old content as a bandaid for the lack of "real" content is a problem. Just speaking from a technical point of view, the developers and designers did not have to "create" anything new. The boss models, dungeons, gears, effects...everything had already been created. That's not new. It doesn't take months and months just to "tune" old content; especially considering that they have released entirely new content (with tuning) in a similar amount of time.
And if we had to wait--or deal with rehashed old content--because something truly spectacular was on the horizon, that would be one thing. But we're getting a new tier of just 7 bosses. And a bunch of dailies. I'm sorry, but doing dailies isn't fun after the first few days. It's just a grindfest. (How many people still grind out TB daily?) And for those of us that play many alts, dailies are an even worse add-on. Many people are already tired of ZA/ZG, and having to look forward to having those as the top heroic dungeons for alts (and bored mains) is just not going to cut it.
Then there's all the artificiality of extending the content. "Oh, we're only doing 7 bosses? Better extend the tier by decreasing the cap on VP gained each week. That ought to extend it by at least a month!" A lot of people say we had to wait a similar amount of time for Ulduar, but Ulduar was spectacular, with everything unique (almost a zone-within-a-zone) with fourteen bosses. Firelands will be fun, to be sure--we can't wait to get in there with everything on farm now--but with only half the content.
Lastly, reimagining the "old world" shouldn't have been part of an expansion. It should have been part of a content patch. Yes, it had to be done. Yes, leveling in the old world is much better now. But we spend so little time there, it hardly matters--even leveling our new toons. Leveling combined with instanced-leveling results in out-gearing/leveling the zones you're in. You can't really experience great storylines (like those in Silverpine, for example) without being 3-4 levels ahead of that zone by the end.
By "including" the old world revamp "in the expansion"--something anyone can get who buys Vanilla--it's just resulted in an expansion that is extremely light on content and is being artificially extended through caps, lockouts and boss difficulties. And where are our small raids like OS? There's tremendous opportunity there to create "entry-level" raids there with loot tables similar to T4W so many casual players could do something more than the same old 2-3 raid bosses or heroic dungeons.
There is opportunity to improve the situation here; Blizzard just has to prove that they want to. CMs coming to the forums and selling-up dailies isn't going to cut it. You can only be delivered the company line so long before you stop believing it.
The game is the least fun it has ever been. All the classes are watered down versions of all the other classes. No role is fun anymore becuz of all the nerfs and worry about balance. Doing everything based on a priority system kills any fun you may have had, always looking for the next thing to activate and worrying about getting it wrong makes every role stressfull and not enjoyable. Rotations weren't perfect, but 100% priority isn't either, a nice happy medium could've been achieved.
I think I agree that this expansion reeks of lazy and is the lowest this game has ever been. At least for me, is that the whole game has become too grey. Classes are barely unique anymore, the factions have become just too similar, atmosphere has just become so plain, I no longer raid, but those I know who do said the raids are the suckiest they have been atmosphere-wise and in uniqueness (Even though they are less easy then Wrath).
Server community is close to dead other then rep in trade chat, the world is mostly only seen by levelers, who out level the zone so quickly they don't even see half of it (And this goes for without using heirlooms or running dungeons, which make it even quicker). The lore has become so political, lore prior to this did have political aspects, but nowhere near this level, things were much more defined in the previous expansions.
What feels like unfinished lore and content, the Worgen have almost no lore, they do nothing outside the starting zone, Goblins fared much better, but still got nothing special, Draenei have been just about wholly ignored, as have several other old races.
I could go on, but simply put. Content has become boring, some might say "Rose tinted goggles", but I was one of the few people who actually enjoyed wrath and wasn't whining about it (Or felt like it), it's not nostalgia, it's the expansion itself.
Bought cata in hopes of complete choas...i havent got any feeling that we are on the brink of annihilation so far.oh look a non-attackable dragon setting fire to everything thats cute
Ya, I don't even know why I'm fighting elementals. Ooo, Deathwing released them....I thought Deathwing wast the real threat? Instead I'm fighting elementals like Ragnaros or Al'Akir. Don't get me wrong, cool stuff, but all the hype was mostly about Deathwing...and we hardly see him unless he's releasing Ragnaros or fighting Alexstraza.
I guess atm I don't really have a reason to get all hyped up over fighting Deathwing or the Twilight Cultists. "ZOMG he attacked SW!"....dude I'm horde. How do you think I feel about that? XD
Even Org, according to the book, The Shattering, was damaged because of fire elementals. Deathwing had nothing to do with that. So again, I find myself fighting elementals instead of Deathwing.
I can say right now that I'm tired of lvling alts too. I've got a shammy, mage and dk at 85, and I've got several lower lvl alts, and i have no desire to play any of them. One: because of the continuous nerfs and buffs, its a friggin teeter totter. Two: Nothing to look forward to but the same stuff I'm playing now, and none of it gets me excited. trust me, I've tried to fing a reason to get hyped up. Mass Effect, SWTOR and even Halo get me more excited than this is, which is why odds are I'll be quitting soon.
I guess I really don't know what to say to Blizz to give them advice as to what to do, other than pay attention to these thread and please please take it under serious consideration at the very least.
One thing I can say about previous expacs that helped get me hyped up for them was the fact that I knew about that lore. Granted, there were retcons, but still, I've played WC2 and 3. So i know about Grom, Kael, Thrall, Jaina, Turalyon, Danath, Sargeras and Kil'Jaeden, Arthas and so on. Deathwing and Cho'gall never had any big parts to play that I recall.
They really feel like they were pulled off some back shelf, dusted off, and handed to us "Here ya go!" So more lore on these villians would be fantastic. And by lore i mean in game, not in a book. I like reading, but I KNOW not everyone reads the books.
People have listed very good, very specific points about why the game seems to be on autopilot and allowed to coast.
Yes, some people do think the complete lack of character customization is one of those signs. But even some of Blizzard's biggest non thinking supporters, Joystiq, has even admitted WoW is severaly lagging behind other games in that area.
But there has also been specific points about the content, and the slow pace it's come out at. The fact that Abyssal Maw has been cancelled because of the ridiculous reason that they say Neptulon's story is finished, when in fact the last thing we saw of Neptulon was Ozumat taking him away at the end of Throne of Tides. So if his story is done, does this mean that once again a storyline gets finished in a novel or comic like The Missing Diplomat did?
I started playing WoW during the summer of 2008. Being new to the game so close to the release of WotLK kept me at a casual level. I leveled very slowly, finally hitting 70 right when WotLK was released. Several weeks I believe after release, I was able to purchase it, and began cruising my way to 80.
Unfortunately, I didn't hit 80 until the day before my sub ended March of 2009, and my mother forced me to stop playing (I was a junior in high school at the time). I had played for 9 months. Then, fall 2010, I saw the commercial for Cataclysm. I was immediately entranced and my desire to play WoW again was revitalized. In November I was able to start playing again (and pre-ordered my copy of Cata).
It is now June 2011. My sub ends in a couple of days, but I had to quit as of 2 weeks ago for several reasons (I will more than likely be returning in August). Even in all that time back, I was unable to really leave the casual gamer status. Sure, I did some old raids, and barely touched Cata raids, but in the end i'm still a casual gamer. I work very slowly in terms of higher tier content.
I would love to raid 2 or 3 days a week on a schedule, but I just can't commit to that. I would love to be in a progression guild with all the bells and whistles, but I can't commit to it. It's not that I don't have time, I just don't have time at the right time. I live a pretty spontaneous life, and will very rarely forego social experiences for WoW. This is why I cannot raid on scheduled days and times. It's also slightly problematic that I play on an eastern server, living in the west.
Anyway, my main concern is that everything is extremely time consuming. Don't get me wrong, I don't mind that things take time, but at some point it becomes too much. It's overwhelming. I find that that is one of the major factors that leads to my continued semi-casual status.
There are many things in the game i'd like to accomplish, and with 3 85's raid ready, I find that I am constantly overwhelmed. Where do I start? What should I do first? How could I multitask in an effective way to achieve all of these things in a timely fashion?
I love this game, and I don't feel I'm experienced enough to really complain about it as some of you that have been around since vanilla. I'm aware this game has grown and changed immensely since it's launch, but as I read into what a lot of you are saying, I can see where you're all coming from. Things need to change.
We all pay to play, but there comes a time when you can no longer shield our eyes from your motives. When a few start to see the lack of effort along with a never changing or increasing cost.. it becomes a domino effect and before you know it subs will start dropping like flies.
I have grown bored of WOW lately, but I have a heap of hours played, a new zone with Raids/Dailies is not getting me excited, it's the same formula Blizzard have used for years, it's getting stale.
Whether Blizzard are prepared to invest Time/Money into the the old girl, too freshen her up, I'm not so sure, I believe WOW will stay on it's current formula, and Blizzard will be putting thier eggs into the new, next Gen MMO.
This is not to say WOW is Dying/Dead, this old girl has many years left in her, before the Accounts Dept say....." Pull the plug on them servers"
Ironically they are actually in this position because the do listen to the community too much.
Some people wanted PvP. So instead of keeping the development on the game on the track they had meant for it to go, they added in high end PvP starting in BC. Well, they didn't realize how much work they had created for themselves since the game was no designed for it and so it has cost us a lot of content.
They also listened to people when they complained about old raids and instances which were going to be removed during the Cataclysm redesign. People also didn't want some old quests, which make no sense in a Catclysm timeline, removed. This has given many old zones a very odd feeling.
Not to mention "casuals" complained about raiding the same instances multiple times a week, 10 and 25. Now people calling themselves "casual" complain about the shared lockout, which was made shared because of complaints of "casuals".
They listened to players who cried "Give us back ZA to get our mounts". So they released ZA for no other reason than for the mount. Now we lose Abyssal Maw. Can't help but wonder if time required to tune an old raid just to put a mount run back into the game didn't in some small way affect the decision to cut this raid because of time not being able to be spent on it.
The fact is WoW broke EQ's subscriber base on day one of the game's release. It was popular because it was Blizzard and it was Warcraft. All they had to do was stick to their vision of the game. Maybe it would have only had 10 million players instead of 12 million, but I doubt it would have the problems it is now having and might not be hitting this apparent decline as quickly as it is.
A lot of people made points I have about the same opinion on, which would be things such as Abyssal Maw not being put into the game, not just for story line sake but for content's sake that doesn't offer itself up as a grind-fest like the fire lands dailies (or a club featuring the cast of Jersey Shore. Just joking, trying to diffuse some tension, that's all.)
But there are two concepts I'd like to take a swing at.
The first being the Guild Talent Tree. Right now, we currently have the Guild Perk system, which gives guilds rewards for advancing in level, which is really awesome. What I was bummed about was that you could no longer pick rewards like Blizzard intended and had shown to us. What separates a 25 Guild from another 25 Guild?
Yes, you could say there are different people in the guild, but no person in Trade will see someone advertising their guild as "Oh we have awesome people join us," and say, "wow I'm going to join them, I sure believe that guy!" They'll notice that they're 25 and go for the Mass Resurrection, and all that jazz. If there were talents, there would be reasons that other guilds were more favorable to certain players.
Cash Flow used to generate more gold for a single guildee per drop. For example, if I killed a boar, and it dropped 10 silver, it might drop 11 with the guild talent. The talent that deposited money into the bank, which is now Cash Flow, is something totally different. Or there used to be a talent that removed reagents for spells for guildees, so people who glyph for things such as slow fall or levitate would have a free glyph space up. I mean look at games like Guild Wars, they allow guilds to build their own towns, which is pretty boss.
And I'm not saying copy Guild Wars, but there's something that sets apart each guild no matter what. Where are Guild Talents? And additionally, does anyone remember the Guild Hall promise? I won't even go there, but Talents and Guild Halls really set apart the
, , , guilds that are 25. It was innovative.
Which brings me to my next point, innovation. I don't get irked because Blizzard isn't doing this and that, or not just because they promised this and we're getting that, or that I don't like daily quests, whatever. It's that they aren't challenging themselves. As someone who freelances in game design, pushing the limit and exploration are the only reasons I can really get a kick out of it.
I don't say, "well I'm going to make this platform side scroll game, and throw in enemies. I've seen it before, I know it works, and people are okay with it." I say "what if it had a tower defense going on in the background and players had to multitask, and that you had three different combat modes, and that you also had to juggle cereal while doing all of this?" Sure, most of that won't ever work, but I could try and I could find a gem.
Nintendo for example, has been running selling the Gameboy series successfully for years. Why? There's innovation, there's reason to keep playing the same thing, because it's not the same. First, it could play Mario, then it was in color, then their were link cables, then backlit screens and smaller designs, then touch screens, and now 3D without glasses and video cameras and Netflix. And sure, that might different because it's a system, you could argue that, and WoW is a video game.
But there are tons of video games that constantly punch their old counterparts in the face and say, "Hey, you could've been so much better. Luckily for everyone else, the newer version of you is better." Rock Band went from a Guitar Hero clone to something where players can not only battle online now, but use an actual guitar to actually play the game. Not to mention new instruments, which you could also actually learn to play.
Hell, you can even make your own tracks and put them up for sale on the Rock Band Network. Or what about Halo? Started out as the Xbox's flagship first person shooter with a nice campaign and fun multiplayer with a few maps, but now it has downloadable content, a map editor, new graphics engines, a saved film option, cooperative campaign, a ranking system, and more.
WoW has been out since 2004, earlier if you played beta. Its been seven years since WoW launched. And I'm not saying everything is the same, because its not. But after having this franchise for so long, you think they would do something more than just put out some excuses to grind and a few bosses and label it "new content."
Too long, didn't read? Blizzard has stopped pushing itself, or at least stopped caring about WoW enough to push themselves to truly keep a game that was great, great.
At this point i dont even really care about lore i just want stuff to do. They could start taking old 5 mans, shattered halls etc, turn them into UBRS like 10 mans no lockout easy raids and not even give us any lore or explanation, just put it out for something to run and I would be totally cool with that.
I never really got the importance of lore anyway. Seemed like vanilla was all over the place. I started raiding stratholme and ubrs, undead and orcs. MC and BWl followed up with more orcs type stuff but then we started raiding ZG and trolls then jumped over to AQ and big bugs then finally ended up in naxx killing undead. Little bit of everything.
Alot of the arguments in the thread have been a lack of new content, and a lack of quality content. The only thing that's changed in WoW, only thing that's been added outside of dungeons, raids, class, and race, is a barbershop, quests lines have been added, most of which have no endings, various systems have been put in which have killed server communities, talents have been made more linear, and so many new skills have been added that no class -can- be balanced for PvP. So much has been lost, so little has been gained.
I'm fine with the go to X kill Y quests, never said I wasn't.
I'm not ok with lore that makes no sense, quest lines that seem to have been made for the sake of being "LOL AWESOME!", with storylines that DON'T FINISH (there are ALOT), races that go ignored (Draenei, Worgen (no race should have a defining racial storyline end in the others factions start zone)), a complete disregard for the story and setting, a complete failure at making an intriguing story that even nears the quality of years ago.
I won't speak much on the raids honestly, I don't raid, I tried it before, I didn't like it. But something can be said how half a year in, we've gotten nothing but a pair of rehashed dungeons that step on what they once were, another set of dailies that NO ONE WANTED PERIOD, and a half a promise of raid content (as in, we were supposed to get 2).
Something can be said of "dev water coolers" which tell us nothing but "shut up and wait", and blue posts which are largely the same.
Long time Blizzard/Bioware fan. I watched as EA took control of what Bioware once was and turn it into a profit machine, producing as little as possible while still charging the same.
Along comes the Blizzard-Activision merger, I knew then and there Blizzard as I knew it was gone and the only outlook was a bleak one.
With the only two companies I looked to for games being "bought out" I've since turned to Indie games for enjoyment. I highly suggest you all do the same.
Yes, I'm still playing WoW and yes I'm new to WoW. That being said there really isn't a lot keeping me here.
Started playing WoW with a purchase of WoW Battlechest which was 2008, since then it has expanded to three accounts up to WoTLK as my two children and myself played together with my oldest and I raiding, two accounts up to Cata.
Currently down to 1 active account and 2 closed due to the for lack of better words "lazyness" of the developers of WoW and it's content.
What do I mean by "lazyness?"
1. Wasted resourses on non essential "goodies" i.e. remote auction house, mounts and pets store, while other items left to go to waste - namely BoA gear which back in the day players farmed their butts of for and probably still have to. Don't give me any excuses about BoA people we all know it was not implemeted do the the cash cow it is for Blizzard.
2. Cata Xpac simply a rehashed world. Don't get me wrong I like it alot, see The Barrens, but you missed 90% of the game in this Xpac! Can we get some flying in Silvermoon and the Exodar? When I was growing up my Grandfather would have called this "half assed".
3. Lack of more hero classes, where are they? DK was the first of many right?
4. Lack of MMORPG in this MMORPG, lets face it folks flying killed this game and if it wasn't for Archeology you probably would never seen an opposing faction member. Outside of Org and SW there is no game community.
5. It's World of Warcraft !! Where is this war? AV or WG is the war?
6. Complete lack of PvP support. PvP queues have been jacked up since 4.1 and I have not attempted PvP in the last 2 months or so due to the random teleport to a graveyard and/or not being able to even enter the BG after the 50 minute queue.
7. Game is simply not fun, nothing new nothing interesting same grind for gear.
We really can't complain too much at this point. Blizzard gave us a good number of years of content. Average life span of an MMO is about 6 years, from past games, when they start on the decline. A kid starts playing WoW at 14 when it comes out and is out living on his own, paying taxes, working for a living when it starts to drop off. That is a long time for a game to be around if you put it that way.
This game will live its remaining days like Everquest, DAoC, CoH and many more, and cater to the truly hard core, institutionalized players that know nothing else and don't care to.
It was a good run and many of us will remember the good times and either move on to the next big thing or grow out of the hobby all together.
We'll miss you WoW ... =(