Selective Gaming

“Sometimes, we are literally watching. Sometimes, you could be fighting a dragon, and there could be an invisible gnome flying in mid-air, overhead, looking down at you. … Gnomes. Specifically – only gnomes, actually. No other races, just gnomes … watching your every move, and laughing at you when you wipe.”
Ion Hazzikostas

Selective Gaming

I am alarmed at how many players are getting very selective about how they spend their game time in WoW. The reasons must be many and varied but it appears to me that there are way too many systems to play with not enough reward and, mostly, it isn’t fun to do.

Even more worrying is the bloggers, the super fans of WoW, are not happy and playing other games or quitting or; again, being very selective of their game time.

Let me describe something:

You are in a dungeon or raid with other people. You see a pack of trash and attack it. You will kill this trash. Now, imagine that you are a class that has an AoE stun and use it. A-ha, now everyone can unload with no fear of mechanics. The next pack, someone notices that the caster mob did not move and traps it or polymorphs it. Woot. That class can sparkle and be admired.

Now, imagine the same thing but now you HAVE to use that special spell or everyone will die or struggle. Over and over again, you feel like you are surviving the fights. You don’t feel like a bad ass or hero, you are playing a game that is so screwed tightly that there is only one way to win. You want to be strong enough to win without the tricks.

There is no “game” part where there are many ways to solve the problem and win.

The “bring the class” philosophy has been taken to extremes and it has added pressure on the player. Where once is was a time to shine but surely optional, it is now crucial and critical to the point of everyone simply dying.

Ion did a Q&A in Greece and said, “Heroic is for more organized groups that value performance and class composition.” That added “class composition” is kinda new and very strict in our current game. There may have been designs back in Vanilla that needed a certain class with a spell but not since WotLK have I seen that burden on the player.

I would suggest that the fun of playing a class is using your special spells. I would also suggest that it is not fun when you have to use your special spell or die.

My Guild Master would tell you that Pandaria was the best expansion because we played that expansion. We did it all; pets, toys, mounts, challenge runs, achievement runs, you name it.

With BfA we are over-whelmed with stuff. Emissary vs Incursion vs Warfront vs Island; what will you spend your time on? It has to be fun AND rewarding: pick.

I know I’m getting cynical when I begin to think that the Mythic Plus guys grew up with controllers in their hands. Well accustomed to failure, they try again until they know the sequence: AABdowndownAupCC or however those things work. While that is fine in an arcade or on your couch; it is these guys who look at M+ and recognize it. And that is way too strict and tight for an MMO.

The designers must have grown up with controllers in their hands. We see horse jumping games as quests or spinning electric fences in dungeons; things that need precise timing that echo the controller experience. Trust me, I get exasperated!

Against the above, classes are more balanced and fun than ever. I can try a new Warlock and see what I’m looking for: single target, aoe, interrupt, self protection and then the flavor.

The zones are beautiful and if it was not for non-stop WQs and non-stop picking flowers, I’d be happy to (don’t believe it) not have flying. I hope that they open some new areas or islands to explore.

Much of the problem is likely from the stat squish. We see food that gives 55 haste as meaningless and are offended that that tuning is offered. Same with potions, flasks, enchants; might as well skip it.

I am convinced that Ion believes that bring the class is the most fun and will continue to design our encounters that way. That is, until he realizes that for the bulk of the players it is not that fun to survive. Players want to be heroes and strong.


3 thoughts on “Selective Gaming

  1. I didn’t consider the balance between being a hero and simply doing what one has to. When described like that, it really highlights why it is not fun at all. Did you put that text into the Suggestions in game? It’s spot on.

    Hm, I wonder, in a game like Wow, is it a good thing having to pick? I guess so? Yet when I think about it, it for some reason does not sit well with me.
    I returned to blogging, a plethora of screenshots taken care of ❤

    Liked by 1 person

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