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#52 Sep 05 2013 at 12:17 AM Rating: Good
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
I really, really hate the new talents system. Putting that out there.

As in I loathe it. For one, it's obviously a PVP system. And while this could have changed since I last looked at it closer to MoP's launch, it was definitely a cookie cutter style system.


it was just as cookie cutter when we had trees. yes, sometimes that cookie cutter spec was hybrid, tri-spec dk in early wrath, VARP rogue in bc(?), frostfire bolt in wrath(?), feral charge PvP resto in bc, etc etc

maybe there was 3-4 choices per class but still you had a few different styles of play if you failed to figure it out or google it you were failing hard. the actual meaningful choices where minimal.

now you pick a spec, the spec picks your talents for you. yes, much of the new talents are PvP types, survival and CC with a few damage tiers. but those are things that can vary without crippling a specs ability to do its job. do you really want to meet the tank that thinks the 6% crit reduction talent isn't as good as 5% crit he can grab in the second tier of the fury tree?

granted the damage tiers do end being if x take y unless plenty adds then take z but still for many cases the difference for the average player, ie you, is non-existent.

tl;dr - talents have always been cookie cutter, you are wearing rose colored glasses

side note - i do miss getting a new talent point every level to some degree but getting 1% crit from a talent isn't as cool as getting a new ability. which are far better spaced and paced these days. of course getting to level 50 and getting mangle was awesome but getting at level 6 and not having to suffer for 44 levels is far better


It's not that simple.

For one, changes to content are pretty important here. In Vanilla, and even into BC, dungeon-running was the main source of content for most players. Raiding wasn't even remotely as common as it was in Wrath (and vastly less common than in MoP). On top of that, you weren't dual-speccing, you weren't respeccing at the drop of the hat.

You had to make actual decisions about AoE/CC vs. single target and support vs. personal performance. That first part survived into Wrath.

Sure, there were talents every single player was going to take, because they were signature talents of that spec. But at the dungeon-and-below and PVP levels of content, which is where the vast majority of players were actually playing, there was a lot you did to customize your build.

Yes, if we limit this to raiding, it hasn't changed a ton. But limiting it to raiding isn't telling of the actual player experience of content through those versions.


the talents you get to pick from now are all the bolded stuff digg.

those talents you bemoan the loss of have been baked into the classes or if not the whole class then a spec. that your blah lasts 5 seconds longer crap was rolled into baseline abilities.
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#53 Sep 05 2013 at 12:24 AM Rating: Good
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
TherealLogros wrote:
idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
Sure, there were talents every single player was going to take, because they were signature talents of that spec. But at the dungeon-and-below and PVP levels of content, which is where the vast majority of players were actually playing, there was a lot you did to customize your build.


And most of the people who actually did this and chose not the talents that were optimal were made fun of by elitist a*holes.
Furthermore if the old system breaks down to "either google the best spec and copy it or play suboptimally but hey! at least YOU decide to do so" that's not as great as you paint it.

While much of the critic in this thread is valid, I think most it can be attributed to playing the same game for too long and finally having enough of it. The game I played the most in my life (aside from WoW) is Diablo 2. There are literally dozens of things about that game that drive me crazy now. But when I played it when it was new and fresh (even without the refinements Lord of Destruction brought) they did not faze me in the slightest.


Yes, there were definitely cases of being blatantly sub-optimal. Aside from gear options, of course. Someone who didn't take the strongest talents in their tree, for some crazy desire to be unique, were mocked.

But the point is that the nature of the game at the time allowed for quite a bit of customization. Was there a point where you were just an idiot? Sure. And if you raided, your choices were largely made for you, and your guild probably made the decisions about what talents you were bringing to the table. But most people weren't raiding.

Most people were running dungeons or doing PVP. And in those arenas, you had a fair number of decisions to make.

I remember days when dungeon Mages were making actual decisions about how far they were willing to go into hybridization to boost their AoE vs. their ST vs. their mana efficiency. In dungeons, there was no right answer there. There were some wrong answers, sure. But there were plenty of right ones. I remember Mages having to decide if they wanted Ice Block or Combustion, if they wanted to spread their 20-21 extra points between trees to balance their support, or go all the way for abilities.

And all these options had actual pros/cons in a dungeon-running context. There was no right answer there. Because you had 51 points to spend, but talent trees only had 31 point tiers, the sheer extent to which you could spread points around was huge.

I'm not interested in comparing raid experience against raid experience, because that's not indicative of overall player experience at the time.


you are talking about using a hybrid approach while leveling, which vastly different then a hybrid approach near or at the cap. when there was the X1 point talent trees i did that sort of thing often. respeccing when you could grab a new skill in a different tree was cool but maybe you are one of those people who view the larger part of the game as the leveling experience and not the end game.

the end game working better will always win as it last longer for all most all of the player base.
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#54 Sep 05 2013 at 6:52 AM Rating: Decent
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the talents you get to pick from now are all the bolded stuff digg.

those talents you bemoan the loss of have been baked into the classes or if not the whole class then a spec. that your blah lasts 5 seconds longer crap was rolled into baseline abilities.


No. It's an entirely different setup.

WoW typically gives you three talents with similar end results and tells you to choose between them.

Vanilla WoW offered you Ice Block, Combustion, and Presence of Mind, and made you choose. They were all fundamentally different talents with different uses and their own sets of pros/cons.

Now?

Mage Tier 1 - 3 movement-related talents, two of which are noteworthy in PVE. All PVE Mages are taking PoM or Ice Floes. And it's 100% encounter specific which would be better. Most dungeon Mages will likely default to Ice Floes, as (assuming movement is still a thing), it would probably be far superior in PUGs.

Tier 2 - Pick your shield talent. PVP selection - just having one is sufficient for PVE. I imagine most Mages would take Flameglow, just because it's passive.

Tier 3 - You're taking Frostjaw. Either way, this is clearly a PVP tier - two AoE roots and a silence/root.

Tier 4 - Oh look, another suvivability tier. How interesting. Do I want a threat drop, which I should never need with the changes to tanking, Cauterize, or Cold Snap. Every PVE mage, unless facing specific encounters they'd need Ice Block or a DoT-dropper for, is going to take Cauterize. Which is passive.

Tier 5 - Oh look! Actual PVE talents! Sort of. These are actually three talents that do the same thing, slightly differently. And each has a clear hierarchy based on number of opponents, so it's encounter specific. And because AoE with groups over 6 mobs is less common now, the third one is almost never taken. So you actually decide between Living Bomb or Nether Tempest... and both of them have specific coding quirks that means your secondary stats ultimately decides which you'd take, regardless of number of mobs.

And your stats, of course, are linked to your spec. So it's almost like... you don't have a choice at all.

Tier 6 - You're taking Evocation. Very, VERY specific encounters can allow for the others to perform better than Evocation can, but in the vast majority of situations, no.




I'm sorry, I don't see choice here. I can't decide to build myself more towards the glass cannon end, and go full damage with low survivability. I can't decide that that's a bad idea, with dungeon-running being my main content, and sacrifice some of my AoE and ST damage for a higher chance to survive. Or maybe I like being more strategic with my play and I maximize my CC, instead of my AoE, and keep the ST damage. Or maybe I understand that our highest chance for death in dungeons actually comes from trash, since there's a heavy skew towards glass cannons with DPS, and I counter that by building for trash.


ALL of these were decisions you actually made, on most classes at least. These are no longer decisions you make. Blizzard gives you a set of talents that are largely similar, or contain no real PVE benefit, and then you "choose" one. Even the talent trees where there are legitimate options, they're all options that do the same thing.

On Mage Tier 6, you're not choosing whether or not you'd like to buff your mana regeneration, your AoE damage, or choose the ability to cast while moving. You're choosing three different forms of mana regeneration, two of which are highly situational, and one of which isn't.

That's not a choice.
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#55 Sep 05 2013 at 7:09 AM Rating: Good
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The new talent system didn't really add anything, though. At end-game, I mean. People still roll with min/max builds. There's no innovation, no imagination or customization left. You maybe switch one of two talents depending on your spec and the encounter (carrying around respec tokens is a pain in the *** - completely negates the removal of buff reagents). As a Druid, I'd honestly rather they hadn't removed half my abilities in the various shapeshifting forms.

Bear when Guardian spec'd has two or three abilities more than Bear as Feral spec'd. Same with Cat form in the two specs. I have empty buttons sitting there, because 1, 2, 3 etc. need to be bound to the same abilities across specs (otherwise muscle memory doesn't work).

And I know that large talent trees resulted in baddies making a terrible mess of it all (hello, Melee Hunter), but once in a while, you came across a player who used the mixing and matching to his or her advantage.

I'm rolling with a Harbinger/Chloromancer/Necromancer build in Rift (I keep using Rift as an example, because it's got insane level customization). I haven't met one person who hasn't ridiculed me for using a pet spec with a pseudo tank spec. I still outperform everyone in groups, though, both in healing done and damage done - at the same time.

While some builds are just downright terrible, sometimes you can make it work, and work well. This tinkering and testing is what makes leveling fun for me. There's no customization left, though. The glyphs were supposed to change how the class plays, but tell that to Feral/Guardian Druids. And the talents aren't exactly mind-blowing, either. Do you want +15% speed or the ability to charge stuff (both used to be baseline, but @#%^ you)? Do you want an AOE disorient, an AOE slow or a hard stun (that was previously a baseline ability)? Gee, let me put some serious thought into whether or not I give a sh*t.

WoW talent calculator: http://www.wowhead.com/talent
SWTOR talent calculator: http://www.torhead.com/skill-calc
Rift talent calculator: http://www.rifthead.com/stc

You tell me which of the three talent systems has the most customization. I'll give you a hint: it's not the first one.

Edited, Sep 5th 2013 3:12pm by Mazra
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#56 Sep 05 2013 at 7:31 AM Rating: Good
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To be entirely fair to the new system, I'm not opposed to it in principle (beyond the leveling issue, which would be nonexistant if they had replaced it with something else).

I'm opposed to it in its implementation.

I think it's problematic that so many of the talent tiers are essentially serving a single purpose, with a pick your poison kind of choice.

It's like Tier 3 is going to be a damage shield. So you can choose true shield, passive shield, or healing-based shield.

That is a legitimately interesting choice in PVP. And it's not an awful choice for tanks (granted, the tank is probably going to choose any talent that has a "saves from death" effect). But for most players, that's just not interesting.

But if they had given me truly different options there, it could have been.

That said, the other thing it is seriously lacking is progression. Having requirements for talents beyond the base points was interesting. I wish they had structured the talent trees more like tournament maps or whatever that shape system would be called.

That would have created a system where you actually needed to make decisions.

Of course, the other side of that equation is that content design and player philosophy has changed to the point where mostly people just care about damaging talents, outside of PVP. Back in Vanilla, people LOVED bringing Mages to dungeons, because Mages brought Polymorph. A strong CC was something worth sacrificing damage over.

Nowadays? People would probably dump half their Stamina if it meant 100 more in their core stat...
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#57 Sep 05 2013 at 7:44 AM Rating: Decent
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Warcraft is an amazing game, i like turtles and bears. Also i can fly and it's a "plus" in my book.
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#58 Sep 05 2013 at 9:17 AM Rating: Excellent
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
Of course, the other side of that equation is that content design and player philosophy has changed to the point where mostly people just care about damaging talents, outside of PVP. Back in Vanilla, people LOVED bringing Mages to dungeons, because Mages brought Polymorph. A strong CC was something worth sacrificing damage over.


You really can't fault Blizzard for that. They tried to bring back CC in dungeons in Cata and look what that did to them. I wish they just would have said "***** you! Adapt or leave." to all the whiners but since they are a company that wants to make a profit I can totally understand why they caved in.
I blame the playerbase and their desire for easy AND instant gratification. Yes, there are still people that like to grind sh*t out or do harder things. And Blizzard even gives those people content too. In form of the White Raptor for 9999 dino bones or the Challenge Modes. But I don't think they will ever put emphasize again on one of those two things in the main PvE endgame, i. e. maxlevel dungeons, LFR, normal mode raiding. Because too many players would cry and leave.

I think many of the things criticized in this thread (or other WoW threads) can be traced back to the enormous amount of tears players shed when the game gets harder.
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#59 Sep 05 2013 at 9:46 AM Rating: Excellent
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Mazra wrote:
You tell me which of the three talent systems has the most customization. I'll give you a hint: it's not the first one.


idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
That would have created a system where you actually needed to make decisions.


How many useful talents did you have to pass up for the ones you have? (Without changing your role, of course (tank/heals/etc)).

That's the question in my mind at least. Choosing between 3 different AoE spells with slightly different affects is only interesting if there's a reason in the game to choose one over the other. If they all simply kill stuff, or if you're never in a situation where the choice makes a difference, you're not missing anything useful. If you can respec before each fight, then you're never without a talent you may need anyway. In my mind it's not that the talent trees are bad in the present form, it's just the game doesn't present enough situations where the choices matter.

Not that something like the linked SWTOR talent trees aren't any better, they're like WoW's once they started dumbing them down. They make the top tier talents pretty important and you're taking like 80%+ of the tree to get there in the process. There usually aren't any low level talents in the other trees that make things interesting either, so it's pretty much a no-brainer. Well I guess on my healy sorcerer I picked up the extra +100 force early instead of waiting until later, but other than that there's very little compelling enough to make you wonder if you can pass up the top talent.

Part of me wonders why some games even have talent trees. Other than because all the other games do, so they do as well... There's really no point in having them if you aren't going to make them useful.

TherealLogros wrote:
You really can't fault Blizzard for that. They tried to bring back CC in dungeons in Cata and look what that did to them. I wish they just would have said "***** you! Adapt or leave." to all the whiners but since they are a company that wants to make a profit I can totally understand why they caved in.
I can't see them going that route again either. I'd like to think that most people who really enjoyed the CC/interupt/stun/whatever style of combat left WoW for games that offer it. Anyone left behind at this point probably likes WoW more than that style of combat, given how long it's been since it was a thing.


Edited, Sep 5th 2013 8:48am by someproteinguy
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#60 Sep 05 2013 at 9:51 AM Rating: Decent
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TherealLogros wrote:
idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
Of course, the other side of that equation is that content design and player philosophy has changed to the point where mostly people just care about damaging talents, outside of PVP. Back in Vanilla, people LOVED bringing Mages to dungeons, because Mages brought Polymorph. A strong CC was something worth sacrificing damage over.


You really can't fault Blizzard for that. They tried to bring back CC in dungeons in Cata and look what that did to them. I wish they just would have said "***** you! Adapt or leave." to all the whiners but since they are a company that wants to make a profit I can totally understand why they caved in.
I blame the playerbase and their desire for easy AND instant gratification. Yes, there are still people that like to grind sh*t out or do harder things. And Blizzard even gives those people content too. In form of the White Raptor for 9999 dino bones or the Challenge Modes. But I don't think they will ever put emphasize again on one of those two things in the main PvE endgame, i. e. maxlevel dungeons, LFR, normal mode raiding. Because too many players would cry and leave.

I think many of the things criticized in this thread (or other WoW threads) can be traced back to the enormous amount of tears players shed when the game gets harder.


I don't agree with your logic there. At all.

"Blame the players" is a terrible position. Its the job of the company to provide a quality experience for the players. The players are paying for that service.

The players want to have fun. It's Blizzard's job to make things fun.

Back in Vanilla/BC, killing the trash mobs was still fun. Because they could actually kill you and you had to pay attention. Plus, they actually had drops you cared about. Items to turn in for rep (which was the main way to actually gain rep), random drops that were a really nice addition to your gearset, item scaling that meant the green or GASP blue or GASP purple drops you could get from them would all be great. Plus, you didn't get 3 upgrades for every slot every week, so getting gear was actually exciting.

Blizzard is the ones that changed those things. They not only got rid of the need to CC mobs, they got rid of any realistic value to killing those mobs. What a SHOCK that a half-assed reintroduction of CC without making those fights fun or challenging, or bringing back value to killing trash mobs, was unpopular.

In Cata, the ability to AOE down a pack was pretty much JUST out of reach for players at the start. And gear progression to the point you could do it anyway happened pretty quickly.

Essentially, they arbitrarily introduced a mechanic without reintroducing anything that once gave that mechanic actual value. Players are willing to work for something when the reward is worth working for. They aren't happy about doing pointless crap just because the developer tells them to.

It's Blizzard's job to give the players those experiences, not the players' job to be happy with whatever Blizzard lands at.

[EDIT]

The three identical talents thing is what really kills me.

You know, even if it was rare to have damage talents, if each of them were actually different, it would be so much better. But they're not going to do that, because it's too much for them to balance the player who took all movement and CC break talents against a player who took all damage reduction/shield talents and an emergency heal.

If they can reduce everyone down to controlled numbers of each ability type, it's easier for them to balance.

But it's not going to please the part of me that remembers having to seriously decide between very, very different talents. The number of discussions we've had on these boards weighing utility against utility for 31/21 point talents (and those leading up to them) is pretty immense.

Edited, Sep 5th 2013 12:05pm by idiggory
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#61 Sep 05 2013 at 5:15 PM Rating: Good
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Sorry but no. No, no and no.
There is so much whining on the forums any time anything in game is not totally easy to get with a minimum of time invested. Of course I blame the players! Blizzard is only giving the game a very vocal crowd demands. For many people they ARE providing a quality experience. And while Blizzard had the opportunity to keep WoW hardcore (lol it never was but you know what I mean) doing so would likely have cost them more subs than this way. The start of Cataclysm is a clear indicator of that. So yes, blame the players. Because obviously so many of them want a game where you only have to press the button once to receive your bacon.

I personally still enjoy WoW but I would love to have HC dungeons back that deserve this name. I would love to have elite mobs in the questing zones with extremely long and unpredictable paths and damage/health values no single player could ever hope to withstand, no matter the class. I would love to once again only have real raids reward raidquality gear. But those times are gone and won't come back. And while Blizzard did play a role in that evolution I really don't see the majority of the blame on their side. And it is beyond me how you or anyone could.
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#62 Sep 05 2013 at 10:02 PM Rating: Good
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it is the players. once blizz showed them that they would design content that could be AoE'd down most of the player base decided they loved that play style.

when blizz tried to revert, early cata heroics, there was huge push back. a combination of nerfs and gear inflation made them easy again. which then caused other players, probably some of the same ones honestly, to complain the game was too easy.

blizz is also at fault as they keep waffling on the difficulty level of content, especially heroic 5 mans and normal raiding.

ideally i'd like them to have level 90 regular and heroic 5 mans. with the heroics closer to BC or early cata difficulty and acting as the stepping stone to normal raiding and beyond. let the regular version be for people who will mainly do LFR.

or anything just something defined. of course that wont work as it is too close to telling some people they suck and cant hack it in heroic 5 man content.
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#63 Sep 06 2013 at 2:53 AM Rating: Excellent
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Horsemouth wrote:
blizz is also at fault as they keep waffling on the difficulty level of content, especially heroic 5 mans and normal raiding.


I would not say normal mode raiding is easy now. There are of course encounters that are laughable but overall these bosses are rather unfogiving when it comes to making mistakes. t11, t14 and t15 had some pretty nasty fights even in normal.
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#64 Sep 06 2013 at 8:02 AM Rating: Good
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Sorry but no. No, no and no.
There is so much whining on the forums any time anything in game is not totally easy to get with a minimum of time invested. Of course I blame the players! Blizzard is only giving the game a very vocal crowd demands. For many people they ARE providing a quality experience. And while Blizzard had the opportunity to keep WoW hardcore (lol it never was but you know what I mean) doing so would likely have cost them more subs than this way. The start of Cataclysm is a clear indicator of that. So yes, blame the players. Because obviously so many of them want a game where you only have to press the button once to receive your bacon.

I personally still enjoy WoW but I would love to have HC dungeons back that deserve this name. I would love to have elite mobs in the questing zones with extremely long and unpredictable paths and damage/health values no single player could ever hope to withstand, no matter the class. I would love to once again only have real raids reward raidquality gear. But those times are gone and won't come back. And while Blizzard did play a role in that evolution I really don't see the majority of the blame on their side. And it is beyond me how you or anyone could.


That argument is way too simplistic. It would be like me saying that WoW grew the most during Vanilla and BC, when CC was necessary, so therefore people really liked CC and that's why the game expanded.

You're attributing causation to something which could be simple correlation. Even worse, I might be no more than coincidence, considering the AoE-style dungeon combat is still in the game and subs are still falling.


The reality is that this has everything to do with the evolution of the desires of players, the design philosophies, and the implementation over time.

Warning: Really, REALLY long post ahead. And that's coming from me. The TL;DR is that it was the effect of unbalanced implementation of design features combined with a consistent failure, until recently, to establish the necessary infrastructure to make Blizzard's design philosophies work together. The nature of CC's demise, and failure of its revival, are directly linked to the incompatible design directions being followed at the time.

You make absolutely no attempt to look at the actual picture, how things changed, why they changed, and why players would care about those changes. You don't bother to trace the gear levels of players relative the kind of content they could do or were doing. You don't bother to look at how gear levels and stat inflation impacted the game at large.

The reality is that the current state of dungeons was never intended by Blizzard. They screwed up, and stacked stats so high that dungeon running didn't require thought (particularly with the elimination of triage healing).

Then they forced raid-geared players to go back into dungeons, to keep that content utilized, even though those players so laughably outgeared it that it was like a level 80 character running a level 70 dungeon. But they did nothing to scale anything but the rewards.

Add to that the fact that they implemented a gear scaling system that meant approximately the same amount of gear gathering was necessary to get into the current raid content at any time, so you never needed to revisit the old raids (except for your weekly bonus).

Is it any surprise that players who were always going to become rapidly geared for raid content multiple patches passed the implementation of those dungeons weren't going to take them seriously? Any at all?

That's not a situation you blame the players for. Blizzard vastly over-geared them and then forced them to run content not suited for their gear level just because they didn't like that content going to waste.

Now, it IS worth pointing out that I don't think this is the design philosophy Blizzard went into the expansion with. Stat levels skyrocket far beyond what they initially intended due to the implementation of half tiers. And I think they underestimated the effect that making raids more accessible would have on dungeon running (the irony, of course, being that the implementation of the group finder rendered the need for a huge population to run those dungeons relatively irrelevant). But, again, that's something they implemented without having properly planned for it.

Then comes Cata, and Blizzard again didn't do their due diligence with the system. And this time, I'm willing to really blame them for it. First, Cata shipped at least 6 months too early. I remember how shocked I was as a beta tester that Blizzard, of all companies, was going to launch the game at the state it was (having always been known for keeping content until it was ready for launch). There was nothing even resembling balance for MONTHS after that launch.

That soured their new system from the start. When you had such a gross distinction between class capability for so long into the expansion, of course it wasn't working. You had dps classes with disparities as high as 33% dps (comparing the top spec of one class to the worst spec of another). And CC had changed a lot in Wrath, to balance PVP around the new, ridiculous stat numbers. But those changes weren't necessarily well-balanced for PVE... And of course not. With no semblence of balance in PVE, how could you possibly balance CC?

So, yeah, players complained. Some of them were complaining that content was stupidly hard even with CC, because they were playing horribly underpowered classes. Some of them were complaining that the gimmicks used to force CC were annoying, because they were still powerful enough to plow through it (and no one likes being FORCED to do something, just because). Healers were annoyed, because healing was in such a bad place to begin with that why wouldn't they? Tanks were annoyed because they kept dying due to content that wasn't balanced at all. They had to contend with unhealable damage spikes at some points, with pitifully easy-to-handle damage numbers at others.

In short, you can't blame the return of CC on the mess that was early Cata, because without anything remotely balanced between the classes, it just isn't remotely possible to implement a balanced, acceptable approach to CC. And by the time they balanced the classes, the damage was already LONG since done.

Why?

Because they were still using dungeons as odd stepping stones to raid content. Once you started getting raid geared, you still needed to run dungeons. And running dungeons in raid-level gear was faceroll easy. So requiring CC, which is directly linked to a healer's ability to keep the group alive, very quickly stopped mattering by the time Blizz was in a position to actually implement it in a balanced way.

And by then, they had completely ****** off such a large portion of the player base, who had been having such bad experiences with the CC in dungeons, that it made no sense to continue with it. If they were going to allow for gear progression to negate the mechanic, there was no reason to implement it in the first place.

Which is really what this comes down to. It's one thing to make content loleasy for the raiders, it's another to make it loleasy for raiders and then PUT THE RAIDERS IN WITH EVERYONE ELSE.

That kind of disparity was never going to work.

It's really simple. This isn't about player mindsets becoming inconsolable in the wake of evil CC. It's about them having to deal with really, really poor implementations of the system, getting fed up, and Blizzard abandoning their half-assed attempt at it because it was easier than actually bothering to fix things, because they hadn't done any of the necessary infrastructure work at the start of development to actually support that sort of system.

I had a discussion with Fishy in the BDT recently about the difficulty scaling system they're implementing. I said they should have implemented it long ago, and he countered that it was the infrastructure they laid in MoP that made it possible.

I'm going to hold that both of those are correct.


Blizzard is, in a way, finally getting their act together and taking a look at their content as part of a cohesive picture. They're finally addressing the reality that, if you're going to try and put all players of a huge ranges of skill and gear types into the same content, that content needs to scale.

I'm holding to the opinion that they should have implemented that scaling system long ago. It should have happened in Cataclysm; the lessons learned from Wrath should have been more than enough to make it clear it was necessary.

Because Cata's design was never going to work. But, frankly, just about everything in Cata's design was so disjointed it's not actually surprising.

But it's also not my job, as the consumer, to be blamed for their decisions, or to just be happy with what they give me, etc. Blizzard's job is to make me happy enough with the product that I'll give them $15 a month. They lost massive numbers of subscriptions because their game was messy. That's the sad, sad truth.

It's not so simple to boil this down to one mechanic and say "SEE! This is proof the players are the problem!"

Sure, players are generally immovable on things they don't want. But it's the game company's job to make them want it, if they think it will be good for the game, not the job of the gamer to be happy with whatever Blizzard deigns to give them. Blizzard had good intentions, but really poor implementation.

Edited, Sep 6th 2013 10:04am by idiggory
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#65 Sep 06 2013 at 8:47 AM Rating: Good
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Sometimes I wonder what the game must be like for you guys. I'm "that guy" who doesn't speak the primary language of my server and I suspect the play style here is a good bit different.
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#66 Sep 06 2013 at 9:07 AM Rating: Excellent
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After I expanded your spoilertag I almost collapsed. Smiley: lol

We'll just have to agree to disagree on this one. Maybe I'm jaded, maybe my opinion of the WoW playerbase is too negative or the impact the vocal a$$hats have on Blizzards design decisions is not as big as I think (no, exceptions like CRZ have not eluded me). But I seriously doubt that.

Edit:

Rhodekylle wrote:
Sometimes I wonder what the game must be like for you guys. I'm "that guy" who doesn't speak the primary language of my server and I suspect the play style here is a good bit different.


Be thankful. I usually stay in /1 and /2 because there's always this one group forming for FL/Ulduar/whatever that I don't wanna miss. But reading those channels can also kill much enjoyment. Maybe that's the reason I think the overwhelming majority that plays this game consists of the scum of the earth. Or rather the scum of the internet population.

Edited, Sep 6th 2013 11:12am by TherealLogros
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#67 Sep 06 2013 at 9:31 AM Rating: Excellent
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
But it's also not my job, as the consumer, to be blamed for their decisions, or to just be happy with what they give me, etc. Blizzard's job is to make me happy enough with the product that I'll give them $15 a month. They lost massive numbers of subscriptions because their game was messy. That's the sad, sad truth.
I still blame the WoW is old and new stuff is free thing.
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#68 Sep 06 2013 at 12:41 PM Rating: Decent
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Quote:
Maybe I'm jaded, maybe my opinion of the WoW playerbase is too negative or the impact the vocal a$$hats have on Blizzards design decisions is not as big as I think (no, exceptions like CRZ have not eluded me). But I seriously doubt that.


Blizzard, like literally ever other company in the world, is going to make the decisions that they think will bring them the most cash. Sometimes those will line up with the very vocal demands of the people screaming on their forums, sometimes they will not. They will always be bound by what they can get approval for from their funding sources.

That's the absolute truth of the matter.

Now, the other side of that is that market research is a part of this process. A part of that is conducted on their forums.

But it's not like they just take whatever is being posted about the most and make that change. They'll use metrics. One person posting about the same thing 600x isn't going to have their opinion valued at 600x the value of someone who posted once. And Blizzard's market research team is going to be very active in trying to find exactly how the public sentiment of their X million users is mirrored in the sentiment on the forums.

Is the value of opinion of someone on the forum probably valued higher than the opinion of someone not on the forum? Could be, if they think those users are flight risks. Or they could be undervalued, if Blizzard finds that people who care enough to post on the forums are less likely to unsub.

If you actually think Blizzard just blindly follows what the masses demand, then I can't take you seriously.
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#69 Sep 07 2013 at 3:55 AM Rating: Decent
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
If you actually think Blizzard just blindly follows what the masses demand, then I can't take you seriously.


I did not say that. They don't do it blindly. They do it when they think it will gain/sustain subscriptions.
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#70 Sep 07 2013 at 5:20 AM Rating: Good
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TherealLogros wrote:
idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
If you actually think Blizzard just blindly follows what the masses demand, then I can't take you seriously.


I did not say that. They don't do it blindly. They do it when they think it will gain/sustain subscriptions.


And... you'd have them do something else?
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#71 Sep 07 2013 at 5:33 AM Rating: Decent
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No. But it's exactly in line with what I wrote before. These changes you bemourn are, to a large degree, the result of the playerbase wanting them. Because many people want an easier game, with access to everything, especially highend gear. But without big hurdles to overcome.
At this point I've grown really tired of this discussion. It serves no real purpose so I won't take part in it anymore...
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#72 Sep 07 2013 at 8:18 AM Rating: Good
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As I pointed out, that's absurdly reductive of the situation here.

The content wasn't reduced to the current state because that's what players wanted, it was reduced to the current state because Blizz messed up with the implementation of the content.

They created a situation in which CC was useless, then created a situation in which CC was fairly worthless and everything was painful. And instead of attempting to fix that, with all the additional infrastructure work it required, they decided not to bother.

This wasn't about them succumbing to player demand. The implementation of their early Cata dungeons was terrible. It didn't matter if you liked CC or not - it was just awful. But properly implementing CC required a level of infrastructure work they hadn't done, and were not willing to do (having just spent 6 months playing catch-up with their launch). They needed a quick fix to keep the game going, and the only quick fix available was to return to the simpler AOE model.

It was never about player demand. Player demand is what made Blizzard think that they should be reimplementing CC in the first place, in Cata. But the same BS that led to a good half the features of that expansion being slashed from the cutting board and the remainder being released 6 months early rendered that impossible.

The ROI of implementing CC, once they hit that point, was lower than the ROI of not doing so. Far, far more.

They predicted that their maximum profits would come from re-implementing CC in dungeons. But they failed to actually do so properly, in essence skyrocketing their investment costs relative to the predicted earnings. That's what destroyed the plan.
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#73 Sep 07 2013 at 8:28 AM Rating: Default
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Wow is fun, let it go girl. It's hard to please everyone.

Edited, Sep 7th 2013 10:29am by RAWDEAL
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#74 Sep 07 2013 at 3:14 PM Rating: Decent
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I'd be thrilled if certain systems in WoW were far more consistent between expansions (gear/loot system, talents to name a couple) but i hate that's too much to hope for.

I know many folks are hoping for next WoW exp details from Blizzcon, but I'm dreading it. Cata spoiled me with so many LFR raiding alts that I dont even have to 90 yet, and hearing the endless debates of whats coming next I'd rather push back for awhile.
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#75 Sep 09 2013 at 2:00 PM Rating: Good
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iddigory, I think one very important aspect is missing from your analysis:

Arenas.

In my opinion, the introduction of arenas really snow-balled the problems with balance. They've been dealing with the aftermath of it ever since. Everything from CC to healing, to dps, to tanking...you name it. The rock-paper-scissor balance of larger scale battlegrounds just didn't work with the small-scale arenas. It forced Blizzard to make compromises on one side or the other (i.e., PvE or PvP) that usually made no one happy (well, except for the flavor-of-the-month crowd). A change to PvE made something OP in PvP, or vice versa...and the crying would begin again. I think between the homogenization of classes and the latest talent system, Blizz has just thrown up their arms and given up.

At this point, I'm only dabbling with leveling. Raiding just doesn't have much appeal anymore. From a leveler's perspective, the new talent system is really disappointing. Even it was only a psuedo-choice in the past, I liked the idea that I would get to pick something regularly...now, not so much.
#76 Sep 09 2013 at 3:12 PM Rating: Good
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I agree with azwing.

And I ran some more Panda dungeons. Still not a fan. I don't think I've met a single boss that didn't have some gimmicky mechanic that would wipe you if you didn't do something when lights start to flash. It's like they're trying to turn 5-mans into mini-raids. I can appreciate them wanting to make 5-mans more exciting, but it's not working. It's just so confusing, the effect is the opposite.

Less is more, Blizzard.
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#77 Sep 09 2013 at 3:18 PM Rating: Excellent
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azwing wrote:
snow-balled the problems with balance.

34 class/specs, across:

3 levels of raid difficulty
5-man dungeons + heroics, 3-man scenarios, & various solo encounters
Regular and rated battlegrounds
5v5, 3v3, 2v2 arena

Now balance it!

Smiley: eek

I don't see how they even do as good as they have honestly. Even with the degree of homogenization that's there it doesn't seem humanly possible. Especially with how far different PvE and PvP are in WoW.

Part of me wonders why they even balance to that degree. The amount of resources it must take can't be that small can it?I mean most other MMOs just respond with a "yeah we know it's not balanced, deal with it," kind of attitude once they reach the point all the classes can reach the level cap solo. Smiley: rolleyes

Edited, Sep 9th 2013 2:18pm by someproteinguy
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#78 Sep 09 2013 at 3:32 PM Rating: Good
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someproteinguy wrote:
Now balance it!


They never should have tried.

The RSP model wasn't perfect, but how much has really been improved over the last nine years? And how much has been sacrificed? I'd trade the current "balance" for the ability to go melee Huntard and hybrid Druid again. Why? Because **** yeah, choices!
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#79 Sep 09 2013 at 3:55 PM Rating: Excellent
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Mazra wrote:
someproteinguy wrote:
Now balance it!


They never should have tried.

The RSP model wasn't perfect, but how much has really been improved over the last nine years? And how much has been sacrificed? I'd trade the current "balance" for the ability to go melee Huntard and hybrid Druid again. Why? Because @#%^ yeah, choices!

I'm sure there'd be plenty of QQ (to answer my own question as to why not I guess...), but you'd have to think their job would be a lot easier going forward. Mages: Frost has good survival, fire has the highest sustained DPS, Arcane has the most burst. Warriors: you get 1 tank spec, one DPS spec and one PvP spec. Hunters, please choose: do you want a strong pet, good DPS, or good survivability? Then so on and so forth. You'd think with dual spec it'd be less of an issue now then it was back in the day.

I mean no one really enjoying coming along just "because we needed that buff" or "someone has to innervate the real healers" but maybe that's the price you have to pay if you want varied gameplay?

I dunno.
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#80 Sep 10 2013 at 12:58 AM Rating: Good
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my main beef with blizz and balance is their hesitance to have spells function differently in pvp and pve.

having that as a tool could making solving balance issues a lot easier.
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#81 Sep 10 2013 at 5:02 AM Rating: Good
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someproteinguy wrote:
I'm sure there'd be plenty of QQ (to answer my own question as to why not I guess...), but you'd have to think their job would be a lot easier going forward.


For PvE, sure. For PvP, not so sure.

Instead of having to balance a class to hard-counter another class, they now have to balance every class to counter any other class, provided one player possesses superior skill. I can't even imagine how many variables they have to handle now. And whenever they get something wrong, it results in a class being grossly overpowered/underpowered for half an expansion.
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#82 Sep 10 2013 at 9:13 AM Rating: Good
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azwing wrote:
iddigory, I think one very important aspect is missing from your analysis:

Arenas.

In my opinion, the introduction of arenas really snow-balled the problems with balance. They've been dealing with the aftermath of it ever since. Everything from CC to healing, to dps, to tanking...you name it. The rock-paper-scissor balance of larger scale battlegrounds just didn't work with the small-scale arenas. It forced Blizzard to make compromises on one side or the other (i.e., PvE or PvP) that usually made no one happy (well, except for the flavor-of-the-month crowd). A change to PvE made something OP in PvP, or vice versa...and the crying would begin again. I think between the homogenization of classes and the latest talent system, Blizz has just thrown up their arms and given up.

At this point, I'm only dabbling with leveling. Raiding just doesn't have much appeal anymore. From a leveler's perspective, the new talent system is really disappointing. Even it was only a psuedo-choice in the past, I liked the idea that I would get to pick something regularly...now, not so much.

azwing wrote:
iddigory, I think one very important aspect is missing from your analysis:

Arenas.

In my opinion, the introduction of arenas really snow-balled the problems with balance. They've been dealing with the aftermath of it ever since. Everything from CC to healing, to dps, to tanking...you name it. The rock-paper-scissor balance of larger scale battlegrounds just didn't work with the small-scale arenas. It forced Blizzard to make compromises on one side or the other (i.e., PvE or PvP) that usually made no one happy (well, except for the flavor-of-the-month crowd). A change to PvE made something OP in PvP, or vice versa...and the crying would begin again. I think between the homogenization of classes and the latest talent system, Blizz has just thrown up their arms and given up.

At this point, I'm only dabbling with leveling. Raiding just doesn't have much appeal anymore. From a leveler's perspective, the new talent system is really disappointing. Even it was only a psuedo-choice in the past, I liked the idea that I would get to pick something regularly...now, not so much.


Oh I completely agree with you. I was just trying to discuss the state of the game from player perspective and experience. The idea that Blizzard failed to give PVE players the PVE experience they wanted them to have and this being due to arena balance issues are not at all incompatible. But I don't think it's realistic to pardon Blizz on that part (which certainly hasn't been the policy of posters on this board in patch note threads, ever).

At the end of the day, someone who is bored or frustrated with a dungeon isn't going to rationalize their experience in terms of Blizzard's struggle to balance content. If they're thinking about it at all, it's just going to **** them off more.

And at the end of the day, they're bored/frustrated with the content, and that's Blizzard's fault. It's not required of the player to pay for something that bores/frustrates them. And since Blizzard is the one who wants them paying, it's Blizzard's job to give them an experience to pay for.

In some ways, I do feel bad for Blizz's position. Well, I feel bad for the DEVS' position. The game grew really quickly, and then Blizzard was bought out by Activision. That adds a LOT of corporate pressure on them to make decisions from a business perspective. If it was up to the Devs, Cata would never have launched in that unfinished state, and I'm perfectly willing to believe they could have pulled off the transition back to a CC model quite well.

But business decisions forced them to release the game before it was finished, something directly contrary to Blizzard's approach to pretty much everything for most of their history, and the entire game.

And, honestly, that's probably the same thing that happened with arenas. The devs wanted them to be dungeon-level content. But esports were getting big, and business-side pressure forced them to gain more of the spotlight. And I'm sure that did make Blizzard a LOT of money.
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#83 Sep 10 2013 at 10:12 AM Rating: Good
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More importantly, they changed Wrath to be yellow instead of green.

ABOMINATION!

Seriously, though, Night Elves casting sun spells is just hilarious from a lore POV. And it was only done to justify Tauren Paladins... ABOMINATION!
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#84 Sep 10 2013 at 10:16 AM Rating: Excellent
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I liked being a tree, but they didn't want me to be one. Smiley: glare
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#85 Sep 10 2013 at 10:56 AM Rating: Good
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Mazra wrote:
More importantly, they changed Wrath to be yellow instead of green.

ABOMINATION!

Seriously, though, Night Elves casting sun spells is just hilarious from a lore POV. And it was only done to justify Tauren Paladins... ABOMINATION!


someproteinguy wrote:
I liked being a tree, but they didn't want me to be one. Smiley: glare


Not going to lie... Both of these changes helped diminish my interest in my Worgen Druid. That, and hitting Outland. /shudder.
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#86 Sep 10 2013 at 1:47 PM Rating: Good
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
Not going to lie... Both of these changes helped diminish my interest in my Worgen Druid. That, and hitting Outland. /shudder.


I took my first Pandaren through the starting zone today.

Never again.

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Despite it being one of the most detailed and visually enhanced places in the entire game, The Wandering Isle has to be one of the most sickly and slow experiences I've ever felt in the game. Even the first time round I was forcing money into my computer screen in the faint hope that it would let me skip it. I'm sorry but despite it being one of the few good things of the art teams I like in this expansion, it just doesn't have any replayability factor for me. Yet there are people who could play it over and over without a single care in the world.

Heirlooms would help you kill things faster, but it's still a very, very slow experience regardless. The distances between quests are dragged out on purpose, because when every second gets you money, you'd do the same thing. The quests themselves aren't all that meaningful and have nothing in relation to questchains as soon as you get to Orgrimmar or Stormwind.

As much as I'd like to give kudos to the devs for their work, I think it'd be better for them if they just gave me the option to start elsewhere in another faction's starter zone (after I've done it once, to be fair). Believe me, the more times I think of this zone, the greater the urge to kill becomes.

http://eu.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/7617461861#13

I thought the Death Knight and Goblin/Worgen starting areas were bad, but they at least had a pretty decent pacing and an interesting story (well, the Death Knights and Worgen did). The Pandaren story is just some random "go save spirits, then save mega-spirit!" plot with a "I am one with the Force now, padawan" twist. It only picks up during the last fifteen minutes or so, when you are introduced to the Horde and Alliance, and that's two hours into it!

I have done each race's starting zone maybe four times - the Undead and Human zones 10+ times. This is the first time I've actually been tempted to quit a character due to the starting zone alone. I don't know if it took longer than Elwynn Forest or Tirisfal Glades, but it felt like it. Every hour felt like three. And I was leveling a Shaman, so my rotation consisted of this.

Never again.

Edited, Sep 10th 2013 9:53pm by Mazra
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#87 Sep 10 2013 at 1:49 PM Rating: Excellent
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I canceled my sub last week after not logging in for a month and seeing nothing of 5.4. Smiley: frown But not because I think WoW sucks or I don't want to play. I've just got, like, work and stuff. That's the downside of a sub game versus one you can just come to and go from as you please. (Because the extra three minutes it takes to turn a sub on or off is prohibitive? I guess so.)

As for the argument about WoW's glory days, my 2 cents is, I like a lot of the features and mechanics of the game as it is now, and I think they got a lot right with the last expansion, but it's still an eight (for me) year old game. I'd love if I could magically get the game as it is now, viewed through the eyes of me then. If I was new and it was exciting and I'd never seen Darkshire (I still remember the first time I saw Darkshire, it was awesome), and there were still a ton of fun people to play with and the community was as lively as it used to be, but it looked like how it does now plus farming and pet battles? That would be super cool. But no matter how good a job Blizzard does with this or that feature or overhauling certain mechanics, they can't recapture the shiny for me.

Doesn't mean I don't want to play though. I look forward to having things calm down toward the end of fall so I can go try all the new 5.4 pet features.
#88 Sep 10 2013 at 4:24 PM Rating: Good
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I like the Pandaren starting zone, but the pacing definitely needs to be upped. And no heirlooms is just nonsense at this point.

In some ways, the Pandaren zone suffers from anachronism. The experience is a lot like old-school WoW's starting experience was, where it was really all about your race's immediate needs, and far less about the world beyond, war, etc.

But that feels really off when you phase into Cata-level WoW right afterwards.

And it suffers from the timeline issue, badly. Your starting zone is kinda-sorta during the Cataclysm... but then you level straight through Cataclysm... and never resolve Cataclysm... and suddenly MoP?

That's definitely a major issue with leveling alts in WoW (and one they should have addressed with Cata's revamp). It's not timeline-appropriate on later characters.

What they really needed to do on top of revamping the world was:

1. Create "transition" quests that serve the purpose of raid cutscenes and give the finality to leveling characters.
2. Do... something... to make the BC timeline less insane. Frankly, it should have been revisited - BC was far more like Vanilla than like Wrath, content-wise. But even if that wasn't possible, they should have edited quest text where necessary to make it work.

The absolute worst case scenario should have meant making Outland and Wrath "Cavern of Time" worlds, with quest chains explaining the plot hole as sending you back in time to assist. Add some eternal dragonflight mobs, and move on.

But I loathed the timeline gap moving into BC. Couldn't stand it.
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#89 Sep 10 2013 at 5:00 PM Rating: Decent
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Every hour felt like three. And I was leveling a Shaman, so my rotation consisted of this.

Never again.
I laugh so hard on this video.
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#90 Sep 11 2013 at 9:00 AM Rating: Good
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
And it suffers from the timeline issue, badly. Your starting zone is kinda-sorta during the Cataclysm... but then you level straight through Cataclysm... and never resolve Cataclysm... and suddenly MoP?


I've given up on trying to understand the writers' vision of the timeline. It's completely messed up.

If they were so ****-bent on revamping the "main continents" leveling experience, they should have come up with a time travel excuse for Outland and Northrend. Caverns of Time would have been an excellent choice. While the Aspects gave up their power, I'm sure they could come up with something less ridiculous than the current content jumping.

Even the main continents are messed up now. You're doing quests that are set in a time before the Cataclysm has been resolved, yet Pandaren are running around everywhere. Is the Cataclysm and Pandaria stuff happening at the same time, chronologically, or what?
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#91 Sep 11 2013 at 9:04 AM Rating: Good
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Just repeat to yourself "It's just a show game, I should really just relax."
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#92 Sep 11 2013 at 9:12 AM Rating: Good
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Mazra wrote:
idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
And it suffers from the timeline issue, badly. Your starting zone is kinda-sorta during the Cataclysm... but then you level straight through Cataclysm... and never resolve Cataclysm... and suddenly MoP?


I've given up on trying to understand the writers' vision of the timeline. It's completely messed up.

If they were so ****-bent on revamping the "main continents" leveling experience, they should have come up with a time travel excuse for Outland and Northrend. Caverns of Time would have been an excellent choice. While the Aspects gave up their power, I'm sure they could come up with something less ridiculous than the current content jumping.

Even the main continents are messed up now. You're doing quests that are set in a time before the Cataclysm has been resolved, yet Pandaren are running around everywhere. Is the Cataclysm and Pandaria stuff happening at the same time, chronologically, or what?


The Pandaran starting zone experience is all about the effects of the Cataclysm on the Wandering Isle. My understanding is that the starting experience is set shortly after the Cataclysm occurs, roughly the same point in the timeline as the rest of the leveling content in Cata. They've actually just retconned the Pandaran back into that content.

Once that issue is dealt with, they have the time to focus on this new continent. After all, none of the zones in Cata are, strictly speaking, "new." They're all close to home, and just ones we haven't really been able to access before now. Only the Titan zone was actually new. But because there were already outposts near it, ignoring it wasn't really an option.

The moment Deathwing fell was the moment the race for Pandaria began.

At least, that's my understanding of it.

I'd suppose the best way to put it is that the Goblin, Worgen, and Pandaren starting experiences are all roughly in the same period, but the Pandaren starting zone starts towards the end of those other two (who actually experience the Cataclysm, and months following it).

[EDIT]

I haven't been through the DK starting experience since Cata. They retconned those races into it, I know. But it's timeline hasn't changed, right? Editing the LK out of it would be a big task.

Edited, Sep 11th 2013 11:13am by idiggory
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IDrownFish wrote:
Anyways, you all are horrible, @#%^ed up people

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#93 Sep 11 2013 at 11:57 AM Rating: Default
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lolgaxe wrote:
Just repeat to yourself "It's just a show game, I should really just relax."
Is this real life?http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N618fLxQP6w
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#94 Sep 11 2013 at 1:17 PM Rating: Good
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idiggory wrote:
The Pandaran starting zone experience is all about the effects of the Cataclysm on the Wandering Isle.


I didn't notice any Cataclysm references on Turtle Island. I may have missed the reference to Deathwing, but as far as I can remember, the quests on the island deal with the turtle's increasing discomfort, which is threatening to sink the island.

You kill a bunch of the local fauna as part of your class training (way boring on a Shaman, by the way), and then you go fetch the four elemental spirits that have gone missing. Maybe the spirits left because of the Cataclysm, but as far as I can recall, one simply fell asleep (earth), one was being chased around by an onyx serpent dragon (air), one was angry for some reason (fire), and one wanted to play geyser trampoline (water).

After fetching the spirits, Obi-Wan Kenobi does his thing, and then you talk with the giant turtle, who reveals the reason for the discomfort: a giant airship crashed into its shell. That's when you encounter the Horde and Alliance. There are some angry tigers and monsters from the sea there, but I don't remember there being any explanation as to why they're there. I simply assumed they were drawn/aggravated by the turtle's discomfort.

Once you leave the island, you enter Stormwind/Orgrimmar and are immediately involved in the conquest of Pandaria and the Horde-Alliance conflict, which seems to indicate that you arrive in Stormwind/Orgrimmar well into the Pandaria content.

Edit: The DK starting area hasn't been revamped. Same ol' thing.

Edited, Sep 11th 2013 9:19pm by Mazra
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#95 Sep 11 2013 at 1:39 PM Rating: Good
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Mazra wrote:
idiggory wrote:
The Pandaran starting zone experience is all about the effects of the Cataclysm on the Wandering Isle.


I didn't notice any Cataclysm references on Turtle Island. I may have missed the reference to Deathwing, but as far as I can remember, the quests on the island deal with the turtle's increasing discomfort, which is threatening to sink the island.

You kill a bunch of the local fauna as part of your class training (way boring on a Shaman, by the way), and then you go fetch the four elemental spirits that have gone missing. Maybe the spirits left because of the Cataclysm, but as far as I can recall, one simply fell asleep (earth), one was being chased around by an onyx serpent dragon (air), one was angry for some reason (fire), and one wanted to play geyser trampoline (water).

After fetching the spirits, Obi-Wan Kenobi does his thing, and then you talk with the giant turtle, who reveals the reason for the discomfort: a giant airship crashed into its shell. That's when you encounter the Horde and Alliance. There are some angry tigers and monsters from the sea there, but I don't remember there being any explanation as to why they're there. I simply assumed they were drawn/aggravated by the turtle's discomfort.

Once you leave the island, you enter Stormwind/Orgrimmar and are immediately involved in the conquest of Pandaria and the Horde-Alliance conflict, which seems to indicate that you arrive in Stormwind/Orgrimmar well into the Pandaria content.

Edit: The DK starting area hasn't been revamped. Same ol' thing.

Edited, Sep 11th 2013 9:19pm by Mazra


IIRC, the first part of the quest line was that the magics cloaking the Wandering Island in its mist were failing due to the severe upset that the Cataclysm caused. Wowpedia says it had something to do with the Maelstrom.

And my understanding is that the Wandering Isle bit and Pandaria aren't really related in the timeline, since no one on the Isle had any clue where Pandaria was. Both sides already knew Pandaria was out there, anyway.

But it's also possible that they got the timeline screwy over that period of time. The original Pandaren blurb talked about you joining a conflict close to boiling over into outright war, which more accurately describes Cata than it does MoP, from what I can tell.
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IDrownFish wrote:
Anyways, you all are horrible, @#%^ed up people

lolgaxe wrote:
Never underestimate the healing power of a massive dong.
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