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The Changing Face of World of Warcraft

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 6 years ago | from the lowest-common-denominator dept.

Role Playing (Games) 328

Back in March Blizzard released patch 2.4 and significantly altered a good portion of the overall gameplay and provided a much more casual experience. Since then Blizzard has continued to make the game more approachable through new dungeons and removing attunements and other restrictions throughout the game. While this may open up a lot of new content to the masses and help the game's overall appeal, does this continuing trend promise to alienate the high-end players who thrive on new challenges? Should Blizzard care?

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iIt has done so already. (5, Informative)

SYSS Mouse (694626) | more than 6 years ago | (#23477746)

one of the oldest guild Death and Taxes disbanded today, citing such change as one of the reason. (http://www.worldofwar.net/n/413578/death-and-taxes-disband)

Re:iIt has done so already. (4, Insightful)

GodInHell (258915) | more than 6 years ago | (#23477956)

Yay!

I hate the idea of funding the development of content that only 5% of the player base is intended to enjoy.

Sorry, but I want them to spend their development $$s making content I can get into with my wife and a few friends.

cc

-GiH

Re:iIt has done so already. (0)

servognome (738846) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479664)

That 5% are the ones least likely to get wanderlust and try other games. The casual player will have less invested so will more likely replace WoW with other forms of entertainment.

Re:iIt has done so already. (4, Insightful)

Thyamine (531612) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480100)

I'm a bit split on this, but mostly agree with you. I've been in guilds, but I don't have the time to sit for hours for a raid on a friday or saturday night. So I never get a chance to really play that side of the game. It's hard enough to get 5 people to run an instance, let alone split the loot that you get, let alone 30 or more people, with complex raid counting systems to determine who has what % chance to try and receive the loot (including stats from how many raids you've help in before).

Give me new areas that I can explore on my own or with a friend or two. New quests outside of killing 10 more of those things or gather 20 more flowers.

Re:iIt has done so already. (4, Informative)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 6 years ago | (#23477970)

I suspect the real reason was just member burn-out and disinterest, not any recent changes. No MMO lasts forever, and most guilds are even more short-lived.

Re:iIt has done so already. (1, Interesting)

everphilski (877346) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478040)

We have guilds in EverQuest that are alive and strong, and clocking in at over 8 years old... And there are often guilds that outlive games, jumping from one game to the next.

Re:iIt has done so already. (1)

fitten (521191) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478474)

Yup... my old EQ guild is still going strong and we founded it within a couple weeks of being able to in the game. It's also spawned guilds in most of the other MMOs out there as well (WoW, LotR, EQ2, Eve, etc.)

Re:iIt has done so already. (1)

Seakip18 (1106315) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478218)

So i guess something are not always certain! Guess the IRS won't buy that though...

hmm (5, Insightful)

nomadic (141991) | more than 6 years ago | (#23477772)

does this continuing trend promise to alienate the high-end players who thrive on new challenges?

The high-end players got to be high-end players through thousands of hours of grinding. They don't thrive on new challenges, they thrive on the same old ones.

Re:hmm (0, Flamebait)

Sangui (1128165) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479534)

Mod -1 flamebait
Have you ever done a bleeding edge encounter? No? Then your opinion is completely invalidated. If you played WoW, then I bet, even if you were handed top of the line gear when Naxx came out, you wouldn't have even downed Anub'Arak, which pretty much ALL of the bleeding edge guilds downed their first time, seeing as the Gargoyles in the hallway were sort of harder cuz of the time limit in killing them. Encounters when they first come out are HARD. They're hard and imbalanced. RIght now at level 70, with a guild of 40, you probably couldn't do 4H. Why? Cuz the encounter is fucking hard. When WoW came out, most of the encounters were tank and spank, but after BWL they figured out how to actually do things. Stop being jealous, and l2p.
People like you are the reason Scholo and Strat were allowed to be 10 manable for so long. There's a reason that WoW has instance locks of a week. So you can do a boss or two a night. You have to find a guild that raids when you have time, and one that you can agree with. BUt you probably never spent the time.

Re:hmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23479620)

Obviously you've never heard of reputation or honor grinding. Kill, repeat...

Re:hmm (1)

Duffy13 (1135411) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480392)

Problem is they removed straight up grinding for the most part with the first expansion. There is still rep, but if you actually just play the game normally you will find yourself maxing them out pretty easily. Those few traditional rep grinds still in existence are generally for extra trivial content, like a different mount. You are not forced to do any of the rep grinds to proceed in the game anymore.

That is of course unless you refuse to quest/run instances, in which case you are asking for it and making the process needlessly hard on yourself.

Re:hmm (5, Funny)

nomadic (141991) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479934)

People like you are the reason Scholo and Strat were allowed to be 10 manable for so long.

I've never had an insult leveled at me that I understood so little as this one. It's like you're talking some moon-man gibberish language.

BUt you probably never spent the time.

Since I've never really played WoW your guess is right.

Re:hmm (2, Insightful)

tim_of_war (1256120) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480292)

Why is the parent modded flamebait? It's spot on accurate, and the grandparent is modded +5 insightful, yet he pretty clearly has no idea what he's talking about, but rather seems to be projecting tired stereotypes of MMOs rather than drawing on any actual experiences. Just to reiterate, while it may take thousands of hours of grinding to reach 70 and acquire the gear necessary to attempt end game encounters, what most/all high-end players thrive on is clearing new content. The sentiment that they "thrive on the same old [encounters]" is simply false.

Re:hmm (3, Insightful)

Shiptar (792005) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480716)

Perspective I think. Spending 3 years playing four nights a week 6-11 in a computer game, equates to doing the same thing over and over again. Most won't understand the difference between doing MC four nights years ago a week or doing BT or whatever four nights a week now. I recognize the difference, but if you don't play you won't. The person who doesn't recognize the difference is no less of a person than the one who does. Are you a piece of shit because I drive a Jag and you drive a Hyundai? I would never think so. The flamebaiter seems to.

How does this alienate the high-end? (5, Insightful)

EvolutionsPeak (913411) | more than 6 years ago | (#23477784)

They released the Sunwell at the same time, a 25-man highest end raiding dungeon. I'd hardly call that something for any but the most hardcore pve players.

Re:How does this alienate the high-end? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23478142)

>hardcore pve players
now there's an oxymoron...

Re:How does this alienate the high-end? (4, Interesting)

Llamahand (1275482) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478496)

Ironically, the issue with Death and Taxes disbanding was the huge lag in time between the major updates. From what I've heard, a large number of their higher-ups were disillusioned by the fact that they were having so much trouble beating Sunwell. "But... But... We're uber! Forget it. I quit!" kind of mentality.

Re:How does this alienate the high-end? (2, Interesting)

MeanderingMind (884641) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480460)

My understanding was that it wasn't the higher ups but more recent members who'd joined to fill spots left empty by raiders bored of continually farming Illidan. When faced with actual progression, many of the untested players proved to be undisciplined in dealing with the adversity.

If this is anything like my face... (1, Funny)

AioKits (1235070) | more than 6 years ago | (#23477800)

...it's gotten a lil chubbier... *sigh* Time for some exercise!

Re:If this is anything like my face... (1)

AioKits (1235070) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480266)

Not sure how this can be taken as flamebait, woof, some seriously sensitive people here.

Good changes (5, Insightful)

rune.w (720113) | more than 6 years ago | (#23477838)

The latest patch has been great for me. I'm more of a casual player and now I'm able to level up with just a couple hours of gameplay. Before it would take me a good couple days to increase just one level, which got increasingly frustrating and became the main reason why I canceled my subscription last year. I'm also a big fan of soloing and now I'm able to do that in more areas of the game (I usually do the party quests and dungeons during the weekends when all my friends are able to connect at the same time).

Overall I think it was a good move for players like me. I don't know what the "old-timers" would think about it, though...

Re:Good changes (5, Interesting)

Scoth (879800) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478228)

I'm in a somewhat interesting position of being able to see both sides. My wife-to-be is a fairly hardcore raider with a couple or three 70s (her group has taken down Vashj a few times, and making progress on Kael'thas in BT) while I'm a much more casual player. I've mostly enjoyed the changes because I can experience more content on different character types without nearly as much grinding away on each one. On the other hand, she's gotten a little frustrated because people are getting to 70 and wanting spots in raids well before being sufficiently geared or skilled with their characters. She's now having to deal with people who stormed to 70 in quest reward greens who want into SSC or BT with blue and green gear.

Re:Good changes (2, Funny)

geekoid (135745) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479016)

"My wife-to-be is a fairly hardcore raider ..."

You might want to flee~

Re:Good changes (4, Insightful)

vertinox (846076) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479170)

Before it would take me a good couple days to increase just one level, which got increasingly frustrating and became the main reason why I canceled my subscription last year.

Personally I find grinding the least favorite part of MMO's. Leveling in itself is fun for the first few times but after playing MMO's and plenty of other single player games that are based almost solely around leveling (hell even pokemon is based on leveling your pets), the process has gotten old for most people and the need to come up with some other gameplay is needed.

One thing most people are rumbling about in WAR (Warhammer Online) is that there will be horizontal progression rather than vertical progression with a hard cap at 40 for levels and the end game is the Realm versus Realm (like DAoC).

Most people agree that increasing level caps will alienate casual players who will be at a disadvantage to hardcore players because it is PvP in a sense and even if they separate higher levels from lower, increasing the Cap simply for the sake of keeping the players playing the game will only cause the player base to be separated even further.

The idea of horizontal progression is that once you reach level 40, new content will be added for a second tier of leveling which means any expansions that add new spells, gear, and content will be equal to that already added by on a second scale completely separate from the levels gained from 1 through 40. They will be balanced so that these new features don't actually make the old ones obsolete. They WAR devs haven't really gone into exactly how this will work especially since they haven't released the very first part of the game, but the idea of horizontal progression at a certain point actually makes more sense to me, because you don't have to grind to experience new content but to use some other scale (I think there is something called realm pride etc) to which the end game can be progressed without simply raising the level cap.

The idea is interesting to me because I could care less about leveling another character ever again and would rather focus on another way of advancing a character through a game. I think Ultima Online had it right, but no one seems to want to copy them ;)

Re:Good changes or why cas gamers r001 (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479516)

I would have to agree - I used to start new characters and guilds because the mid-level grind after 20 was just way too boring for someone who:

a. has a full time job
b. has a life
c. has a kid

But now I can frequently just pop on and get a level or two with the few hours I can spare, so I've stopped creating new characters and am leveling my existing ones in preparation for the expansion(s).

Besides, I always wanted to be a runecrafter.

Re:Good changes (2, Interesting)

pezpunk (205653) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479758)

yep these changes have been a major boon for me and my guild. we have been around since the game launched, but always approached it pretty casually and minimally-organized.

however, what with the recent changes, we have been able to go into dungeons and down bosses we never thought we'd ever get to see. we're downing bosses in Tempest Keep, Serpentshrine Cavern, Black Temple, and Mount Hyjal, and we're plowing through Zul'Aman picking up three of the timed chests on the way. it sure beats farming karazhan over and over and over!

anyway, we're having tons of fun seeing all this year-old content for the first time, and countless guilds across countless realms are probably having the same positive experience.

sure the hardcore will grumble, but so what. it makes absolutely perfect sense for Blizzard to allow the majority of its players in to see teh cotnent they spent the majority of their resources developing! doubly so now that the current expansion is reaching the end of its life cycle.

Wrath of the Lich King will be here soon, and tehn the hardcore will once again be on top by a wide margin.

And i am sure that towards the end of THAT expansion's life cycle, Blizzard will again make the highest-end stuff more attainable for the majority of the players, but not after the hardcore have had their fun in form of 6 months worth of lourding their accomplishments over us casuals.

Re:Good changes (1)

pezpunk (205653) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479804)

*not UNTIL after the hardcore have blah blah blah

Re:Good changes (1)

bidule (173941) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480530)

I have (70 70 65 61 49 34 33 + more), and while I like the sparklies around quest items and the ?! on the mini-map, I think they really dumbed it down too far.

There used to be elite mobs that required skill to kill, groups that required to kill adds and run away before dealing with the main mob. None of these were hard, they were puzzles you had to solve and for which you had to prepare. Now it's mindless kills, no finesse at all.

So now you have level 70 who don't understand aggro control, wall-pulls, minimum fear range and many other ways to get the most off their toons. I wish you couldn't get higher than 65 without real skill, I wish the end game was going up a few level doing hard instances. I don't mind playing with average player, I just want to know if I have to play it safe or if I can push hard.

Mega Million (2, Interesting)

hubdawg (1148477) | more than 6 years ago | (#23477886)

game companies.. need to put some real loot in the game.... gas discount cards, fun tickets to go to the movies or discounts on outdoor activities. At least that would give some players a better reason to log on than mindless hours of grinding and crafting. Sure , that would shoot them in the foot. Not really I say, then you get a player wins a gas card.. they are on the road not logged in but stll are paying 14.99 month for something they do not use. Sounds win-win for the game company.

Re:Mega Million (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23477940)

That may possible be the dumbest thing I have ever heard. No really.

Why do they need to do that? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23478174)

Given the very high (and still growing) number of people who play these games, I think game companies are already giving the gamers what they want.

Why do we expect that one game should be everything to everybody? Blizzard should cater WoW specifically to the audience of people who like fantasy grinding MMO's. Nothing more, nothing less.

People who play these games don't seem to mind the "mindless hours of grinding and crafting." I would venture a guess that many of them take solace in the high number of relatively low-stress challenges with a steady stream of rewards that are valuable into the future of their gaming experience. It offers a nice change of pace from the real world, where things get much more hasslesome and the rewards are much less predictable.

Grinding isn't for everyone. It never will be. Why stick extra rewards on it to try and make it be for everyone?

Re:Mega Million (1, Insightful)

LighterShadeOfBlack (1011407) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478202)

game companies.. need to put some real loot in the game.... gas discount cards, fun tickets to go to the movies or discounts on outdoor activities. At least that would give some players a better reason to log on than mindless hours of grinding and crafting. Sure , that would shoot them in the foot. Not really I say, then you get a player wins a gas card.. they are on the road not logged in but stll are paying 14.99 month for something they do not use. Sounds win-win for the game company.
So you want WoW to give discounts on out-of-house things so that people will spend more time playing in order to get the discounts which will then cause them to go outside and spend less time playing while still paying their subscription?

You are a marketing genius. I tip my hat to you sir.

Re:Mega Million (1)

Last_Available_Usern (756093) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478744)

People use MMO's to escape reality. Winning a gas card or movie would just be a reminder of what they're trying to get away from while they're playing. Not to mention, the game caters to a large international audience. It would be tough to provide prizes that had relevence to everyone (I doubt Mahjin in India wants a Barnes and Nobles gift card).

Re:Mega Million (1)

hubdawg (1148477) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479498)

Very true.. it is an escape from reality. But also marketing sucess is measured in small percentages. If .02 percent of the userbase wins a prize that keeps them offline but still paying a subscription... it all adss up in the end.

Re:Mega Million (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23478944)

Yea, let's give the farmers even more incentive.

BTW, If you read the banner before entering the game you would find out about various contests that offer swag and money as prizes...

Re:Mega Million (2, Insightful)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479560)

Why, so some Chinese farmers could grab them all up?

Re:Mega Million (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23480722)

I'm sure that would do a lot for any online game community, to have all of the iWon.com mouth-breathers flood the world to grind for gas cards and free hot wings at TGI Fridays. Why not have the questgivers offer you Discover card applications and chances to join Free Ipod pyramid schemes, too?

No offense but that's just not such a great idea, and would really be the death of any game.

More Money in Casual players (4, Insightful)

neoform (551705) | more than 6 years ago | (#23477984)

It seems to me that they make more money off Casual players since they require less server time and their subscription ends up bringing in the same dollars as hardcore users that are online 24/7.

Re:More Money in Casual players (2, Interesting)

Duffy13 (1135411) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478528)

I've been wondering about that myself. It always comes down to who stays subscribed the longest, and unfortunately we have no way to track such a statistic. If my friend's that play the game are any indication, they make more money on the hardcore group because they never cancel their subscription, where as the casuals will cancel a month here or there, or even a few. Of course there are more casuals then hardcore, so the difference might be made up, but I'd still be curious to the actual numbers. Not to mention there is the hardcore burn out factor to consider. Personally, I believe that making a purely casual MMORPG is asking for failure. The hardcore group, while smaller, probably makes up the largest steady portion of your revenue. Not to mention they are the ones most likely to buy your full priced expansions immediately. Again, we lack the hard numbers, but from the trend in WoWs development, I think it's safe to say that the hardcore make up enough to warrant development time along with the casuals. The nice thing about casuals tho, is you can throw them lots of little bones (development time wise) opposed to having to focus on a whole new raid instance to satisfy your hardcore group, however that instance lasts longer for them. It's an interesting trade off. Ultimately the successful game will balance the two. WoW appears to be getting better and better at this, the expansion will be the immediate decider in whether or not they have achieved this goal.

Achievement (1)

steelclash84 (1129221) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478074)

Similar to xbox's system, an arbitrary system of achievement will keep players playing more for attaining arbitrary goals even beyond the point where they find the game boring and tedious. As the baseline of top tiered items becomes easier, the top-tiered players will simply change what they consider to be the elite. As long as Blizzard maintains the ideology of making things time consuming to attain, regardless of the difficulty of achievement, the "hardcore" players will ultimately continue to attain it and complain about it later.

Re:Achievement (1)

geminidomino (614729) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479238)

Guild Wars already beat them to that punch with almost 4 dozen "titles" that all require massive grinding. Even worse, with Nightfall and EoTN they actually have an effect on gameplay.

R8 Ursan LFG!

It only alienates the whiners (1)

moz13 (673277) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478112)

There was zero negative impact when they removed attunements for Black Temple, Hyjal, etc. End game raiders whined that it cheapened their accomplishments (whatever that means in a videogame anyways), when it didn't change a thing. In fact, that change plus the new badge loot helped "casual" players as much as the end-game raiders, in that it became significantly easier to find quality recruits to help stem membership turnover. In the end, it's the same story you see everywhere. Change happens and those who don't like change will whine to try and keep the status quo -- even if the status quo needs changing.

Sounds like whining (1)

Evro (18923) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478152)

Making things more accessible is bad... how? Ubers feel less uber? It's in Blizzard's interest to have everyone max geared in BC gear before Lich King is released. Maybe they took it a bit too far by removing "all" attunements, e.g. the Karazhan key quest wasn't really that hard to do, so removing it seems a little silly, but in general why shouldn't people have access to all the content they've paid for?

Re:Sounds like whining (1)

WuphonsReach (684551) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480144)

It's in Blizzard's interest to have everyone max geared in BC gear before Lich King is released.

Mmmm, last I heard (rumors only), Blizzard stated that folks in Black Temple gear or beyond will probably be okay with gear through half the expansion. That would indicate (to me) that the gear levels will be similar to what happened at L60 when Burning Crusade came out.

Basically, I fully expect that all of that fancy blue gear from Burning Crusades will probably be made obsolete by quest greens in the new expansion's starting zones. Purple quality gear might last you until low-70s.

So as much as I want to get 75 or 100 badges of justice for those nice pieces of gear, I won't cry if I don't manage it before WotLK comes out.

Morons (5, Insightful)

geekboy642 (799087) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478168)

Full disclosure: I play Warcraft in a raiding guild.

Anybody who cites the removal of attunement from a high-level raid instance as a reason to give up raiding is a complete and total idiot. The fact that you can set foot into a raid does not in any way mean you can beat it. The only thing attunement gives is a way for raiding guilds to weed out the complete and total idiots. Honestly.

For those of you that don't grasp this, here's how it was before the patch:
Level to 70. Replace gear with low-level dungeon loot, and complete a quest while you're doing that. Raid one thing and get better loot. Raid the next thing and get better loot. Raid the next thing and get better loot. Hooray, you beat the game, go outside.

And here's how it is after the patch:
Level to 70. Replace gear with low-level dungeon loot. Raid one thing and get better loot. Raid the next thing and get better loot. Raid the next thing and get better loot. Hooray, you beat the game, go outside.

Guess what. It doesn't matter if there's no attunement. Everybody still had to spend the identical amount of time and effort getting better loot to even survive stepping in the front door of Illidan's house.

Re:Morons (2, Informative)

bugnuts (94678) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478802)

What you said about beating a boss is absolutely true. Gear does make it easier, but a crappy raider is a crappy raider, and you can't expect him to be anything else no matter how much gear you throw at him.

And here's how it is after the patch:
Level to 70. Replace gear with low-level dungeon loot. Raid one thing and get better loot. Raid the next thing and get better loot. Raid the next thing and get better loot. Hooray, you beat the game, go outside.
Crappy example.

It's now Raid one thing and get better loot. TURN IN BADGES to received from raiding or heroics or daily quests for loot as good as that found in the next two raiding zones.

Removing the attunements makes perfect sense. It's called mudflation which was coined to demonstrate that the demand for gear gets higher and higher. There is no purpose for the powergamer to go after crappy gear in an old raid ... they want bigger numbers on anything with a number and more glowies on things without. Keeping obsolete attunements to force a linear progression when your gear already outgears that found in the dungeons makes no sense... thus they went away.

Imagine if it was required to be exalted with Hydraxian Waterlords (old Molten Core) in order to go to Sunwell plateau. That's why the attunements were removed... they stopped performing the purpose of keeping undergeared groups for exploiting low-hanging fruit of dungeons they have no business even looking at. Those groups are now geared up through badge loot.

Not for casual players (3, Informative)

mseeger (40923) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478190)

Hi,

If you want to see new content, you cannot do so as a casual player. I was far beyond a casual player (2 RAIDs a week, several hours of farming) and still noticed, that i was falling behind on the content scale.

New instances were added faster i could complete them. Going through SSC and TK literally took months. The RAID had several crisis meetings, weaker players were encouraged to seek their fortune somewhere else. In the end, we made progress and were inside the black temple, but the fun was left behind. In April i quit after playing my Rogue for more then 2.500 hours.

Quitting hurts... as intended. But there was no choice. You can either do the easy instances again and again or try new content. There you need two things: equip and error-free playing. I loved the game, but it was becoming a second job. No need for that :-(.

The desertion rate is currently high. In the month after i quit, the RAID lost 4 more players with 3+ years under their epic belt. There are still new players coming in (still got 330$ for my Rogue), but WoW is loosing a lot of experienced players currently.

All the things done for casual players considered, the R&D of Bliizzard is still focussed on the power gamer (Nihilum&Co). 90% of all instanced content (SSC and higher) will only be seen by a small minoritry of all players (~15%).

Please don't missunderstand me: The game was fun till the last minute. But to continue and make progress it would have required more time of me, that i was prepared to give. The content for the casual player (daily quests, small isntances, etc) didn't appeal to me.

CU, martin

Re:Not for casual players (3, Informative)

subsoniq (652203) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479104)

All the things done for casual players considered, the R&D of Bliizzard is still focussed on the power gamer (Nihilum&Co). 90% of all instanced content (SSC and higher) will only be seen by a small minoritry of all players (~15%)

Actually, many more people see high end raid content than you might think. Wowjutsu is a site that crawls the Armory and compiles stats and progress for guilds and servers, and it also breaks down the percentage of the population that sees raid instances and even specific bosses (it does this by looking at the gear worn by a player when it goes through the Armory). According to the latest run 57.5% of the WoW population has seen The Eye and 62.65% have seen Serpentshrine Caverns, though much less have seen the end bosses Lady Vashj and Kael'Thas. I've noticed that since Blizz removed attunement the percentage of the population that's set foot into Mount Hyjal and Black Temple has increased quite a bit.

Now, it does take a lot of dedication and effort to be successful at raiding and continually progress, at least 20+ hours per week would need to be spent just on raiding itself, not including time spent getting money and consumables. This is what my guild found out after having problems with the new 25 man raiding format when The Burning Crusade came out. We were a raiding guild that had been through AQ40 and were close to being ready for Naxx when TBC came out, but we had a lot of problems making the transition to a 25 man raid and spent a lot of months banging our head against Gruul and Mags. We then instituted new rules and a new guild rank for raiding and our progress took off shortly after that. We went from struggling with Gruul and Mags to whacking away at Illidan himself in 8 months. It may not be the fastest progression but it's enough to make us one of the top 4 horde raiding guilds on our server. On average our hardcore raiders spend 20+ hours a week on raiding, and probably another few hours getting money and consumables for raiding. We have required attendance for raids (3 times a week, but most people raid 5 times a week) and required stats for the different classes/specs. We aren't as hardcore as most successful raiding guilds, we allow non raiders and casual raiders into the guild, we have some class/specs that the hardcore guilds wouldn't think of bringing to a raid, and our stat requirements are probably lower than the other hardcore raiding guilds, but it's been working for us and we're all having a lot of fun.

Basically, if your guild wants to progress through the 25 man raids at a steady pace then you need to have discipline and dedication from 25+ people, and you need to be able to work as a team and not go at each others throats when you hit some adversity.

Re:Not for casual players (3, Informative)

The High Druid (1098731) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480352)

Actually that's 57.5% of the guilds that the site scans, which is not 100% of the WoW population. If you check the site there are a number of qualifiers a guild has to reach before they are listed. At a rough guess I would say less than one in three guilds on my server are listed on our page on that site.

Re:Not for casual players (1)

CogDissident (951207) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480452)

I absolutely love games that have such focus and dedication that players who want to win a dungeon have to have "required stats and builds". Makes you feel like your character is you, and customized just to fit your playstyle

/sarcasm

WoW has "raids", computers have "RAID". (4, Funny)

PseudoThink (576121) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479228)

I'm a nitpicking bastard for saying this, but I think you're confusing a World of Warcraft "raid" with RAID, the acronym that means "redundant array of inexpensive disks" to the IT industry and computer users. While it's possible for a person to save screenshots of their WoW raid to their RAID volume, saying you can't wait to join your guild's RAID makes it seem like you're just shouting the word "raid" for some strange reason. :)

Re:WoW has "raids", computers have "RAID". (2, Funny)

PotatoFarmer (1250696) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480054)

Redundant Array of Introspective Dilettantes?
Really Athletically Inept Dorks?
Ridiculously Armored Interactive Dissemblances?

Re:WoW has "raids", computers have "RAID". (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23480644)

shhhh

Re:Not for casual players (2, Interesting)

daveywest (937112) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479400)

2.4 Patch was the end for me. The game finally became more tedious than work.

I actually think the downfall was the drop to 25-man raids from 40. In MC, you really only had 25 players who where on their game and contributing to the kill. If you don't believe me, think about the the last time you were in there and how many were alive when a boss was at 75%, 50%, 10%?

Those other 15 "raiders" were the real entertainment. They were the ones who kept the game a game and not just a mindless grind.

In the 25 mans, everyone must bring their "A" game or you wipe. There is no room for goofing around anymore.

Re:Not for casual players (2, Interesting)

MeanderingMind (884641) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480688)

I contest the notion that in order to be entertaining you have to be dead weight. There's plenty of time between wipes and during trash for skilled people to jest, joke, and have a blast.

Besides, most of the dead weight I've seen isn't particulary entertaining.

Re:Not for casual players (1)

sigmabody (1099541) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480142)

I feel for Blizzard; they have a tough job trying to keep adding new and challenging content while preserving the player base of casual players who pay the bills. I canceled just before 2.4 after playing since early closed beta, with 6 70's at the time.

The problem for me was a lack of meaningful progress without "playing" as a full-time job. Grinding is not fun for me, and if you don't play full time, it's very difficult to raid successfully. Blizzard was reluctant to add meaningful character improvement comparable to raiding which was attainable through casual, non-grind gameplay (understandable, since they didn't want to diminish the raiding rewards). They also did not spend any meaningful efforts accommodating people who wanted challenges, but had intermittent schedules (also understandable, as that would have been a significant design challenge). Ultimately, those two decisions cost them my ongoing subscription.

I think MMO's will need to address the "full time playing to progress end-game" problem at some point in order to survive long-term, and WoW has not done so to date. There's no easy solution, though, and it'll probably require a re-thinking of the whole raiding paradigm. But I enjoyed playing WoW while it was fun, I was glad to provide my feedback during the various betas to improve the game as much as I could, and I hope it helps future MMO's solve the end-game problems better.

Wikipedia (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23478280)

This article or section is written like an advertisement.

More importantly... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23478286)

"Should Blizzard care?"

Why should I care?

I thought this was Slashdot, not a gaming site.

Post stuff that matters to nerds like it used to be. This crap can be found elsewhere.
If it was actually something to do with say technology of how WoW operates, great. But I don't care about
the gameplay and I am sure if anyone does, they go to other sites for such news.

Re:More importantly... (0, Flamebait)

wampus (1932) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478808)

Hey dumbfuck, did you notice that you are in the gaming section?

Re:More importantly... (1)

geminidomino (614729) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479276)

In all fairness, this wank-fest is also on the front page.

Re:More importantly... (1)

fitten (521191) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478960)

Gaming has always been nerdy.

Good overall but... (1)

saintory (944644) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478344)

I'm more about the storyline and I can't muster the manpower or the time for raids, so one of the things that my friends and I have been doing is going back to older dungeons and raids. For example, the content in the Scholomance [wowwiki.com] instance hasn't changed much since Burning Crusade, so 3 of us go into it playing as level 70s just to experience the content.

Blizzard probably doesn't have the manpower but what I think would be exciting would be to refresh some of the content in Scholomance and link it back to (new?) quests that occur or overlap in the Outlands. Perhaps a book is on a shelf in Scholomance or a portal to a plane where you have to collect an item of power through a previously inert portion of Dire Maul [wowwiki.com] . This idea would allow them to reuse (and refresh) existing content.

Currently this still sort of happens with class-specific quests, like the Paladin or Warlock epic mounts.

Re:Good overall but... (1)

Hoi Polloi (522990) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480640)

Same here. I hope to visit every preBC instance at least once just because they are there and exploring is a big part of the game's fun. Even low level quests can be entertaining for the odd places they make you go. I've just recently been able to go to Outland for the 1st time but I'm in no rush because there is still so much to see preBC wow.

Does it alienate players ? (0, Troll)

unity100 (970058) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478348)

you bet it does. and not high end players even.

what would you feel ? you get subjected to months of grind to do this, to do that, and you do, because game says so. and you achieve those stuff in the end and catch up with your guildmates so that you can get into stuff.

then what happens ? a faggot in management decides that they should make things more easier to get more subscribers to bring in more bucks, and voila - all new players take less, and on occasion NO time to get access to what you have toiled months for.

how would you feel ? anything less than totally screwed ?

Re:Does it alienate players ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23478668)

Just wait until all those new players with level 80 greens start beating your epic pants off.
The only way to not screw your self is to NOT grind for months. I honestly don't understand how people find jumping through arbitrary man-made hoops to be fun.
There is nothing challenging about waiting until you collect all the right gear to be able to do something, don't delude yourself otherwise.

Re:Does it alienate players ? (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479008)

when you dont grind, you cant join events that happen in the duration leading to the next expansion. you have to wait until then.

Re:Does it alienate players ? (4, Insightful)

The boojum (70419) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478758)

The problem with this is thinking of it in terms of how much time you've spent at it. Did you play the game and have fun during all those hours? If so, great, "mission accomplished." If not, maybe you should reconsider what you're doing.

If you're playing for fun, the memories of the good times you've had shouldn't be diminished just because somebody else now gets to see that content. You still got there first, anyway.

Re:Does it alienate players ? (1)

Krinsath (1048838) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479186)

One of the more intelligent responses I've seen in this thread. I've never understood the mindset that allows the thought that "Blizzard screwed me!" to exist. I find that what WoW really provides is a platform for my friends and I to connect and engage in an activity together that would otherwise be impossible given our geographic separation. In that regard, Blizzard doesn't do anything other than suggest some activities for us to try, screw up creatively and laugh about.

As I remind people about WoW (and other MMOs) regularly, most of our fun comes from playing together and in spite of Blizzard (or other MMO publishers), not because of them. But, maybe I'm just crazy.

Re:Does it alienate players ? (2, Interesting)

unity100 (970058) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479212)

Did you play the game and have fun during all those hours?
not quite. first 15-20% at the start, yes. rest, tedious.

Re:Does it alienate players ? (2, Insightful)

Mongoose Disciple (722373) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480056)

not quite. first 15-20% at the start, yes. rest, tedious.

Why not quit after that first 15-20%?

I think anger at Blizzard for making the part of the game that you admitted wasn't fun for you more fun for other people is misdirected.

Re:Does it alienate players ? (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480444)

Why not quit after that first 15-20%?
you quit, but until you realize you do another 20%.

if what you have invested in stayed with you (ie the set you made got upgraded to new standards automatically - even if a bit lower - with every expansion ), then it wouldnt hurt. but, in every other game you have to do it and see whether they will do that or not. in swg they did, we quit. in wow they did, we quit. god knows in aoc.

Re:Does it alienate players ? (2, Insightful)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480386)

It sounds like you're basically saying that you're upset because you want others to have to suffer as you did; i.e. classic Sophomore Syndrome.

If you're still playing, I'd suggest that you definitely want to quit before the next expansion, since nothing you're doing now will matter in 5 levels.

Re:Does it alienate players ? (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480466)

It sounds like you're basically saying that you're upset because you want others to have to suffer as you did; i.e. classic Sophomore Syndrome.
not quite. i would have no issues if the set i have gathered got upgraded to the same (similar, if not same) standards when they put out an expansion. but no, your 4-5 months' of work goes to total bust.

Re:Does it alienate players ? (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480496)

If you're still playing, I'd suggest that you definitely want to quit before the next expansion, since nothing you're doing now will matter in 5 levels.
i quit around 10 months ago.

Re:Does it alienate players ? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23478782)

how would you feel ? anything less than totally screwed ?

What don't feel you got enough entertainment for your subscription rate?

I say bullshit.

Blizzard had to make these changes. Why? Well I'll tell you.

The PVP servers were turning into crap, since the younger (who have more time and less maturity) players gathered "uber" gear and would spend their free time harrassing low level characters or characters with lesser gear. Our guild spend more time helping out the "lowbies" than we do on serious questing or PvP because of these shenanigans. I don't mind the random attacks (teaches a player not to take the common route in a war zone), but not being able to complete a quest because they hang around the quest giver is a little rough...

While I personally like the "wild west" atmosphere of the PVP server, it is getting a little out-of-hand. So Blizzard had to make it where these lowbies can get better gear and fast so they can defend themselves. I prefer this over some game master interfering with game play.

Now if they can do something about the AFKers in the battlegrounds. Hey Blizzard! How about only award "Marks of honor" to players who actually done damage or healed another player? Set a reasonable minimum value for each, jeez all weekend I had the misfortune to be in a pug in WSG with only 4 active players...

Re:Does it alienate players ? (2, Interesting)

geekoid (135745) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478970)

This has always been Blizzards style with WoW. The grind is what you pay to get to be some of the first to achieve something.

And no, I ahve never felt I was screwed. No more then I feel I am screwed when the people who get to the theater first have to wait longer for the movie then the person who walks in last.

Fortunatly, I only did the initial grind for a few things, not worth my time. OTOH some people find being one of the first with a Dragon mount worth the extra effort. The players I know that got one knew they would become easier to get latter on but got one anyways. Yes, that's a tiny sample size, but I would be surprised if it didn't reflect what all the Hardcore players know.

Too bad they force you to play~

Why should you care? (1)

Petersko (564140) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479466)

"then what happens ? a faggot in management decides that they should make things more easier to get more subscribers to bring in more bucks, and voila - all new players take less, and on occasion NO time to get access to what you have toiled months for."

This would only bother you if too much of your real self-image is invested in your WoW persona.

Re:Why should you care? (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479536)

its not about self image. its about time.

Re:Does it alienate players ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23480382)

Boo hoo! The game wasn't written around you. So, based on your logic, if you used to get around by horse and it took you a day to get into town and now people drive cars and get into town in 1 hour you would demand that everyone ride horses? If the game is such a grind that it feels like a chore, DON'T PLAY IT.

The Future (2, Insightful)

Narpak (961733) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478536)

Blizzard are considering the future and managing their resources based upon that. Some of the profit from WoW goes to maintenance, some to developing new patches and content; and some undoubtedly goes to future projects (World of Starcraft/The New World of Warcraft, or whatever they have up their sleeve). Also they are considering how to keep the larges majority of their players from changing to Age of Conan, Warhammer Online, Generic New RPG/FPS/RTS/BIG-BROTHER-STYLE - MMO. New products will continue to hit the market and as they learn and improve in quality serious challengers to the dominance of Blizzard will arrive.

I think Blizzard are willing to risk alienating one group of their players if it means holding upon another; if indeed those are mutually exclusive. Whatever happens I am sure in the end serious competition will force Blizzard to improve or die.

110 hours on M'uru (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23478552)

That's the amount of time vodka spent on it over the course of 2.5 weeks. Casual-friendly indeed.

Coincidence? I think Not. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23478796)

Anyone else find it amusing that there have been at least two World of Warcraft articles appearing on Slashdot and elswhere today, when today is also (coincidentally) the release date for Age of Conan?

I think it's part of Blizzard's viral marketing campaign to deflect attention away from Age of Conan.

(Didn't work, mind you; I bought my copy today.)

Next Expansion Brings Big Changes (2, Informative)

flattop100 (624647) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478824)

The OP apparently isn't up to date on the latest about the next WoW expansion (Lich King). ALL raid instances will be playable as both a 10-man and 25-man; the differences will be loot and difficulty. I'm a casual player - I haven't been in a 20-man raid since Burning Crusade came out. I would probably have quit the game soon, except for this news. I enjoy all the stories and quest lines woven into the game, and now, FINALLY, I will be able to participate in "the big ones," even with "only" a 10-man raid.

In my opinion, 2.4 sucked a lot of fun out of it.. (3, Insightful)

BobMcD (601576) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478896)

...and I blame the dailies, mostly. The actual content they provided wasn't fun. At all. If not for the competition issues, you had to content with serious burn-out problems from doing the same EXACT thing over and over again, day after day. The problem with skipping this grind lies in the massive gold inflation caused by them. Your gold pieces were getting smaller by the day.

Of course, you didn't have to grind away on dailies. You could always grind badges instead. Or grind PvP by getting your weekly beatings in the arena.

The point was made up above, but I'll reiterate it: Play has changed to a combination of the best gear and a complete mastery of the metagame.

And frankly, if you're lacking in either of those areas, this really sucks the fun right out of it - ESPECIALLY when mindless repetition is your only way out of the deficit you're facing.

Oh, and when that next patch hits, you're now even further behind. Gratz!

Re:In my opinion, 2.4 sucked a lot of fun out of i (1)

flattop100 (624647) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480094)

I'm missing the part where someone is holding a gun to your head, such that you "have to grind out" anything.

Re:In my opinion, 2.4 sucked a lot of fun out of i (2)

idlemind (760102) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480610)

He's saying that in order to do something new or something that you enjoy within the game you are forced to grind first. It would be like if Tetris required you to get 100,000 points in single player everytime you wanted to do multiplayer.

WoWs influence outside of WoW (3, Interesting)

east coast (590680) | more than 6 years ago | (#23478900)

Essentially the surge of WoW players is one of the reasons I think that EQ2 was dumbed down. It's one of the reasons that my interest in EQ2 didn't last long after some changes were made and ultimately the reason that Sony lost a subscriber.

At this point I'm kind of set off by MMORPGs. Just like Hollywood, the gaming industry has a way of creating cookie cutter results. What fun is it going to be for a real gamer if they start to dumb down in order to draw in the casual player? Not that I play 60 hours a week or something but I certainly don't mind a challenge. How many more MMORPGs will be dumbed down to follow WoW's lead?

Also, as a side note; Age of Conan came out today. I took some interest until I found out that it was 50 USD without ever stepping foot in the game and the games website seemed to have little content (not that I spent much time there). Why is it that a gaming company still thinks that we should shell out bucks to buy a game that we need to subscribe to? I'd be much happier and more likely to try it if I could download the content and play for 15 USD a month. I'm a hell of a lot more willing to pay 15 to see if I like a game instead of 50 for a game that I can't play without shelling out another 15 if my interest in it wanes for a few months.

Re:WoWs influence outside of WoW (1)

jjohnson (62583) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480076)

Why is it that a gaming company still thinks that we should shell out bucks to buy a game that we need to subscribe to?
From the game company's perspective, there's a neat division of costs that are nicely met by current way things are priced: Initial development goes on for 3-5 years, and its cost is recouped with the box cost, while subscription fees pay for maintenance and incremental development. From a business perspective, it's pretty crucial to recover the sunk costs of initial development, and if that can be done independently of ongoing subscriptions, so much the better for the investors.

I'm not saying that's the best situation for gamers--that's why I play Eve, for which I've never paid a box cost since initial development was recovered years ago, and it became a useful competitive move to drop it. But it makes a lot of business sense to try to recover initial costs up front, and probably helps the life of the game--if it's slow taking off but the cost of ongoing operations aren't saddled with a tax of paying off three years of dev work, an initially low number of subscribers can be supported, giving the game time to grow.

Why Blizz does it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23478990)

- Hardcore players had high end instances on farm status for many months now and are already regarded as excellent players.

- Less than 10% of the wow population ever tried Naxx, a pre-BC raid due to gear and bad timing of the release date corresponding with the BC expansion. Hence why it's coming back in WoTLK.

- New players: Not many people play in the old world anymore. Hence why most zones were made non-elite and many quests were made solo-able. Between the levels of 20-58 it's hard to find groups larger than 2 people. When they finally reach 70 everyone else is so far ahead of them gear and content wise they need the new badge gear or farmed pvp gear to even get glanced at for raiding. I know a lot of players that are naturally good, yet under-geared therefore given less priority.

- Most people in wow have 2 or more characters, many tasks become monotonous after raising one. My guild raids 4 days a week for 4 hours at a time. For most people that have a life ( few and far between ;) ) you don't have time to mess around getting an entirely new character attuned for this or that. You usually have friends geared enough to run the raid with you and carry you for about a month until you're relatively geared.

- In 6+ months when WoTLK is released high end gear will only determine how slow you swap out your gear for leveling.

- Even though attunment was removed for places like Hyjal, most guilds will only make it past the first boss before they are forced, gear-wise, to do previous content until they're ready to go back and actually accomplish something. A pretty good example are the hyjal rings that are only obtainable by killing the previous tiers end bosses. For one or two people it may not matter but for 25 people it may improve your raid 2-5%. A huge difference between wiping and staying alive. Same with the Medallion of Karabor that is pretty much essential in Black Temple. Both involve past content that mediocre guild will try and skip but will have to come back to.

In the end Blizzard is trying to make the game a bit more casual. But it's most likely a trend they will use to help people see end game content before the next expansion. I would wager that you won't see any easily obtainable pvp or badge gear immediately in the next expansion. The hardcore players will have the edge for about the first 35-50% of the expansions life before Blizz starts to lower the standards like they did. Well.. Hopefully.

Think of the Monkeys (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23479050)

The only that that really bothered me is that there was a giant monkey in STV, that would eat your soul and serve it as left overs the next day to pretty much anyone who would stumble upon him. My guild had much fun killing this monkey and always made a large event of it, but now he is just like any other monkey, but bigger. Nothing special, he is not tough, not elite, and its kind of silly now to ask for help with him. It was a sad day for monkies everywhere and our guild wore black tabards with monkies for a week to mourn the loss of such a powerful foe.

Blizzard should care (2, Insightful)

teflaime (738532) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479114)

about making a game that keeps making them money. The vast majority (something like 86%) of their player populace considers themselves "casual" which basically means that they will play the game as long as it's still fun to them. 8% of players (that's the last number I heard, anyway) are involved in regular runs of end-game raiding. Clearly, they do not represent a significant portion of World of Warcraft income; yet, their voices have had a significantly inordinate impact on game play for much of the life of World of Warcraft. The remain ~6% are "hardcore PvPers" who went through their own (shorter) period of inordinate influence over gameplay; yet, again, we can see that they are not a major source of income for the game. Blizzard is now starting to recognize that they can reduce their overall churn rate by conctrating on that 86% of players who want to play for fun and comradery and do it in the 2-10 hours a week that they wish to set aside to play. And if you play 40 hours a week? Well, you should probably go hit the gym because you are probably raising the rest of our health insurance rates.

Why it hurts (0, Troll)

Jonasx (851520) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479372)

The problem with many players is that wow becomes a source of self-esteem, rather than entertainment. And who can blame the people who invest that much time into an artificial reward system. Gotta justify it somehow.

This is just part of a longer cycle in the game (4, Informative)

icyslush (1162497) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479626)

We saw this with the last expansion, this is just a refinement. At end-game level before the release of first expansion, you had tons of people at level 60 but with wildly different gear levels. Maybe you were still trying to down the first MC boss or maybe you were uber and were clearing Naxx. You were not equal. Then TBC hit, we went to outland and within 3 levels we had all been equalized by green quest rewards that were better than the best we could get in the old world. It was a great big reset button and everyone got to start over. People complained about working so hard to get their Tier 3 stuff only to DE it at level 63. This time, their giving raiders, casuals and PvPers ways to get roughly equal gear in advance of the new expansion, to cushion the shock, I'd guess. It's the reset button again. We'll race to level 80 from roughly equal footing, the 25 man content will be hard, there'll be new raiding guilds and casuals will be locked out of the best gear again. Until the NEXT expansion, at which point they'll nerf things and hand out epics to equalize everyone once more. It's a reset button. Just consider it the start of Season Three. :)

PVP Killed WoW (1)

Nitra (649930) | more than 6 years ago | (#23479986)

PVP and welfare epics killed the game.

New requirements a slap to raiders (0)

TheCabal (215908) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480046)

A lot of people cheered when the complex attunement quests were removed, opening up SSC, TK, Hyjal and Black Temple to anyone with a level 70 toon. Along with this, Blizzard introduced a lot of new badge reward gear that is almost equivalent to Tier6. This is a HUGE slap in the face to raiders. Badges are insanely easy to get, and for a little effort you too can walk around in T6. The attunement quests were a gear and skill check for raiding guild to see if they were capable of handling the upcoming content. The path to the Black Temple was a very long one, requiring killing Vashj (one of the hardest bosses in the game), and Kael'thas (one of the most technical fights in the game). This also meant having to do full clears of SSC and TK. But not anymore. Just badge up and waltz into BT, sail through the easy bosses and say hello to Illidan!

By opening up the game to more casual play, Blizzard has really devalued the amount of effort that the more serious players have put into the game. There is little to no difference between a raider who has worked his way up through the 25-man raids and earned his T6, and someone who has just done lolheroics all day long.

Re:New requirements a slap to raiders (1)

mdarksbane (587589) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480390)

The rough part of this is balancing raider's accomplishments with having anything to do if you aren't in a raiding guild.

I've seen the inside of every heroic in the game, kara, za, etc. But I don't have the time or desire to join a full on raiding guild (a. my schedule isn't reliable enough and b. I have friends in my guild). There needs to be some upgrade path to keep me playing as well.

I disagree completely with badge gear at a tier 6 level - but a 5-10 progression through full tier 5 equivalent makes plenty of sense to me.

The new badge gear is (I expect) a jump start to get new people into a level of gear that they can join a raiding guild and see the rest of BC content before WotLK comes out. Otherwise even if you farm the life out of 10 mans a raiding guild's going to have to stop back in SSC to farm your sorry butt something to wear to their newest illidan kill that their guild actually wants to go do. Nothing rips a guild apart faster than massive disparities in gear - when one group who has been running an instance for ages has to keep going back there to bring up the new recruits if they want to ever have the manpower to take on higher end stuff... eventually it all falls apart. There are now how many levels of gearing that you have to do to get to illidan? Stuck between grinding the new guy through all of ssc to prepare and telling him to go grind forever and come back when he's got his badge gear, I know which one I'd pick.

Re:New requirements a slap to raiders (2)

idlemind (760102) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480744)

No. You cannot get a full set of T6 quality gear from badges. You can get maybe 5 pieces that are sub optimal but near T6 quality. 5 pieces out of the 17 you earned doing 25-man raids.

I'm sorry but if you compare a 'lolheroic' person with all badge gear to a full T6 raider it won't even be close.

very smart on their part (1)

ILuvRamen (1026668) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480230)

I played SRO a while ago and about 90% of the updates were for high level players only cuz they either raised the cap or made new areas with top level monsters available that 95% of the players couldn't step foot in without dying. So pretty much everyone was pissed cuz the top level people run around stomping on everyone most of the time anyway so everyone hated them. Any updates that are good for lower level and mid level characters in any game is way better than cap raises and that sort of thing.

Already lost them... (2, Insightful)

Vrallis (33290) | more than 6 years ago | (#23480404)

The Burning Crusade expansion was already the beginning of the end for the 'serious' raiders. When they decided to not introduce more 40-man instances they killed a lot of raiding guilds, including mine. The day they announced that fact people I knew started leaving in droves. I stuck around for a couple months after TBC came out, but I just couldn't do it.

By forcing smaller groups, they caused both an increase in smaller, tighter cliques of players, alienating many on the outside, as well as limiting the likelyhood of non-cookie-cutter classes and builds from getting into raids. This further alienated even more players.

If they ever release a lot more 40-man content I *might* consider re-subscribing, though a high price for buying the expansion will likely stop that. There's also the whole issue of "I already have a job, I don't want to play like I have two," which was a large factor in me quitting.
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