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Posted: Apr 19th 2011 2:02PM Irem said

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@Budukahn
All of this.
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Posted: Apr 19th 2011 2:19PM Germaximus said

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er I always enjoyed tanking in WoW, and healing. If you enjoy tanking you enjoy tanking, its really that simple.

Did i enjoy going for random groups sometimes? No thats why id switch to another toon.

As far as cross realm dungeon ques and all that taking away from the community thats pure bull.
Budukahn mentions he got into groups with some cool people (we all have) and for some reason couldnt group with them again? You do realize that group can que together again right?
And if you really wanted to you could try the simultaneous que using a buddy list that is still used for people queing into BG's.

Anyways nice article.

Posted: Apr 19th 2011 2:44PM Irem said

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@Germaximus
You can queue with those people for another dungeon, but how are you going to find them the next day? That's why people say it's taken away from the community. It used to be that people got to know each other and made friends running dungeons, but you can't really do that any more because you're matched up with people you'll probably never see again once the group breaks. Some of my best friends in WoW were made pre-LFD when we'd end up finding ourselves in the same dungeons day after day and eventually chose to start meeting up specifically to run with each other. That doesn't work with cross-realm groupmates.

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Posted: Apr 19th 2011 2:21PM SkuzBukit said

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I dunno, I find that 90% of groups don't want me as a tank because my gear sucks but they don't want me as a DPS either, for the same reason, at least in the groupings I've been "lucky" enough to get into, lost count of how many votekicks I've had because I wasn't uber enough for the people in the group.

How then do I gear up? Grinding the lowest level stuff for Justice Points, talk about bore yourself out of the game...

Seems like if you aren't already leet you aren't going to be, but that's just my experience so far.

Posted: Apr 19th 2011 2:28PM Dumac said

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Not to mention that DPS roles will probably never be underrepresented, and thus mages, warlocks, hunters etc will never be able to attain those rewards.

But i think rewards in general are the problem across the genre in the sense that they cause you to focus on what you get out of doing something, instead of how much fun you will have doing it. The reward becomes the objective, not gameplay.

Posted: Apr 19th 2011 2:38PM N620AA said

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Tanking in WoW was fun.

Tanking for Dungeon Finder PUGs full of butthats and dolts was not.

The problem is that, as one friend of mine put it, it very often happens that the person tanking (or even healing) your dungeon is sucking it up so that everyone can get their stuff done in a timely manner without waiting nearly an hour for a group. The LFD tool removed the player's ability to integrate good players they picked up in their server's PUG community into their social circle.

The problem with designing for convenience is that, to most people, convenience involves self-sufficiency. And the day an MMOG becomes convenient enough, it's stopped being a multiplayer experience, it's just a single-player RPG with online scoreboards and instanced places to stand and show off your gear and accomplishments.

I'm not of the "EQ was awesome" rose-colored glasses crowd, but I certainly thing that the MMOG of today is a husk of the genre, and not getting better.

Posted: Apr 19th 2011 3:03PM Germaximus said

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@N620AA I think WoW just went the pure casual route. I quit after my first month of Cata just because i had already played the game enough before that expansion came out.
I loved the difficulty of the dungeons but ive read they were nerfed later and i assume have done so again? whatevs.
Loved the game, just done with it.

Blizzard didnt do a good job of balancing the game for the more organized hardcore end gamers, they just went pure casual. Cata was a good sign to me but i just didnt wanna play anymore.
I think its funny how if youd played as long as i did you should have noticed the differences when the company changed. They did so many changes that just reversed and re-reversed all the same crap from the first 2 years of WoW. lol

Dont get me wrong, WoW's content is incredible.

Miss my friends on the game but i see them on facebook. ;p

What were we talking about?
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Posted: Apr 19th 2011 2:44PM Seldra said

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Tanking for the most part requires leadership, a trait that not everyone has. This has been pointed out multiple times already and for someone that was a tank and dps in a progression guild in WoW I know. I met many tanks but the best ones were the ones that can lead and not just display above than average gaming ability.

Game developers can make tanking easier, they can offer players promises of rare treasures to become one, but the fact is like in real life, there's more followers than there are leaders. And like in life when you place a follower in a leadership position things don't end up pretty.

Posted: Apr 19th 2011 3:07PM Germaximus said

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@Seldra lol I thought it was cool when they made it so anybody could place icons on mobs. While tanking id always mark a first and second kill, the rest whenever. That was a good tool they added to make leading easier.

The casual player doesnt want to sit in a camp and grind the same exact creatures for an xp grind, they want to adventure! kill lots of demons! and different kinds at that. They want more raid bosses because they look forward to a challenge.
I guess because of that people think its lost its "social" aspect. I remember grinding the same mobs over and over for xp with a group of friends and as much as id enjoyed the conversations and chillin out i dont want to do that in a video game. I want to play the video game.

Oh sorry ive ranted again.
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Posted: Apr 19th 2011 3:09PM Germaximus said

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@Germaximus Oh and marks for CC too. When youre undergeared you want to use as much CC as possible. lol
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Posted: Apr 19th 2011 2:46PM (Unverified) said

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One of the most fun times I've had in an instance was back in Heroic Slavepens with my brother and a few guildies. Our healing pally decided he wanted to try to tank. So we all jumped in and gave it a shot. While we did finish it, it is safe to say my brother (who was druid healing) died at least 20 times. We were all laughing about it the entire time. It was fun taking on that challenge with a group of friends.

This just doesn't exist with the LFD tool. When grouped with a bunch of strangers, difficult tasks become a pain in the ass rather than the exciting adventure it has potential to be.

Posted: Apr 19th 2011 5:11PM DarkWalker said

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@(Unverified)
I get this too.

When playing alone I can handle extremely punishing difficulty, even if the failure rate reaches 95%+.

When playing with friends it gets to almost the same. I can accept very high difficulties and don't care much about banging our collective heads a lot of times to get things done.

But, when playing with strangers, I don't tolerate much in the way of failure. I will accept (but dislike) inexperience (as long as the player seems willing to learn) or non-stellar gear (as long as it's proper gear for the spec, with proper, even if cheap, gems and enchantments), but displaying ignorance (i.e., not knowing essential facts about the instance that a 2-minutes Google search would bring), lack of basic class skills, improper gear, or sheer incompetence will make me, at best, grumpy.

So, in the end, Cataclysm's difficulty would be fine for me in a full friend group, but was quite unacceptable in a PUG.
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Posted: Apr 19th 2011 2:51PM edgecrusherO0 said

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It won't change anything.

The fundamental problem is twofold in WoW's case (I'm speaking as someone who played for 6+ years and tanked throughout all of BC on my paladin [before it was cool] and most of LK/Cata).

1. The average quality of a player in a PuG is horrible. You deal with people who complain when you ask them to CC (if they can even manage to CC or keep a target CC'd), won't follow kill orders or just generally suck (doing 2k dps in a heroic). That makes your job (and the healers) much more stressful, so tanks and healers generally group within guild (I know I only did randoms if I had to).

2. People just don't enjoy tanking that much. I don't know what it is about it (I personally love it), but it seems that most players just hate it. It might be the responsibility that they are shouldering, it might be the lack of big numbers, or the fact that they don't like being hit in the face. Something about their tanking model (I'm assuming it's mostly the responsibility, tanking is much more involved than DPS in heroics) isn't attractive.

This change doesn't fix anything. Tanks already have a huge incentive to que for groups. They get instant pops and can sell their services to players from their server for a nice price (I've never charged, but I knew tanks that would sell 4-5 groups a day for 1-200g a spot).

Sure, some people may switch to a tanking offspec or have a tanking alt, but that's a band-aid. Many of them will be poor tanks and destroy groups, while you have others who que as a tank with no intention of tanking, trying to get another group member to tank instead (that happens now) or proceed to try and tank in dps gear with a dps spec.

Sadly, the LK mentality of being carried through easy heroics and AoEing everything down is still very dominant. That's what Blizzard gets for picking up a good chunk of players when things were the easiest they have ever been and then throwing in content that is marginally challenging (until you have decent gear) for anyone with half a brain.

Posted: Apr 20th 2011 12:07AM fallwind said

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@edgecrusherO0

Here's the thing, tanking used to have big numbers. In ICC10 I had over 80k hp on my bear, when I poped all my cooldowns I had over 117k and nearly 90% reduced damage for 12 seconds, an effective HP of over a million points. Those are big enough numbers for anyone to get happy about.

Cata? hell the mage was only 5k less than I was, and the only difference between the DPS warrior and me was... what... a couple dozen percent avoidance? Colour me unimpressed.

My favorite tanking moment was my first LK kill. Our last healer got stuck behind a defile and needed time to get out, our OT was already down and we were down to just a few dps. I blew everything I had, and for 12 seconds I WAS A GOD. Elrune herself couldn't take me down. It gave the healer enough time to run around the black goo and we got the kill. Now? ha, I feel like I'm balanced around needing my CDs up all the time just to be a "normal" tank, forget feeling godly.

I left because I no longer felt like a hero, I felt like a schmuck who volunteered to get stabbed in the face and in the back.
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Posted: Apr 20th 2011 12:02PM edgecrusherO0 said

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@fallwind

You started tanking during LK didn't you, because tanking now is MUCH more similar in terms of damage intake ect. compared to BC than LK, the only difference is that Mastery is in the game and that it has become king over avoidance (for pretty much ever tank when I played, not sure now).

Having 80k HP on your bear was with the 30% buff, I wouldn't want or expect things to become that inflated again. Remember how boss fights worked for many hardmodes and even some normal modes? You were frequently in danger of being 2-3 shot (pre ICC buff) and avoidance was worthless because of this (bad RNG and not enough health let you be 2 shot, compared to stacking health and being 3 shot). As far as big numbers go, I'm talking about damage. DPS don't care what their HP or dodge/parry is, they only care how big the numbers flying up on their screen is (since many don't have SCT enabled for incoming damage to confuse them).

If a mage in cata has only 5k less hp than you then either he is bad and stacking stam, or your gear is trash. Even at the very start with trashy leveling tanking gear, I was easily 15k+ ahead of dps, and the gap widens as you get better gear (unless you're talking about a heroic geared tank and a mage with full HM gear, in which case I would expect his HP to be closer since his average ilvl is so much higher).

As for avoidance, it's the first tier so you're not going to have a ton of avoidance stats to bump up the base values (also remember all tanks lost avoidance through talents). They WANT avoidance to be low at the start so that it doesn't reach the insane numbers like it did in LK and force them to implement 20% dodge reduction debuffs to keep content challenging. Back in BC I built my paladin full dodge and had a combined 70%+ avoidance (was still uncrushable) but lowish hp. It worked out beautifully because there was little that could two shot me and I took very little overall damage. Situations like that cause balance problems.

Granted it's been a while since I tanked (tanked the first half of the raid content in Cata before I quit), but you are still much harder to kill when you pop cooldowns and they make you live significantly longer. Cooldowns aren't supposed to make you feel like a god, they're supposed to help you out in situations where either heavy incoming damage is expected (boss ability), or a healer has to run. In your situation, you should have wiped because of the horrid placement of the healer and the fact that your other healer(s) and OT had already died. That's LK balance for you though, making it easy. I'm not trying to smash on your first kill and favorite moment (Because I know I have plenty like that), but cooldowns aren't supposed to make up for very poor play.

I would guess you left because tanking isn't like it was in LK, where tanks were pretty OP for the most part (heroics, ICC, easily accessible gear that outgears you for most content). I will admit that I feel like tanks have lost some of the control over their survivability compared to before. Tanks are that schmuck who volunteers to get stabbed in the face, it's your job. You're not supposed to be an unkillable god of aggro and awesomeness, that's how Blizzard made things for most people in LK and many got used to it.
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Posted: Apr 19th 2011 3:21PM (Unverified) said

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This is a problem Blizzard has completely brought on themselves, they have been consistently removing any responsibility for actions for several years now.
It started with paid name change and paid server transfers, pve to pvp server transfers and then cross server LFR groups.
There is zero repercussions for acting like a spoiled child these days and as a result you have people acting like spoiled children. While it did improve Blizzards bottom line, much like paid mounts, unlike mounts it has a long term impact which is now being noticed. Primarily in tanking, this combined with the tiresome mechanics introduced in Cataclysm is resulting in the shortage.
There once was a time where acting like an idiot had a repercussion, there is no longer.
What was once the exception is now the norm. The worst part of it is it has been exported to other games because Blizzard was so successful. Rift is a perfect example.
The bribe mechanic is a sad state of affairs.

Posted: Apr 19th 2011 3:48PM Heraclea said

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I no longer play WoW, and left the game not too long ago, slightly before the dual build feature went live.

My main was a warrior, whom I specced for DPS and refused to spec for tanking. There was a more or less constant level of social pressure to respec to become a raid tank. The people I played with were struggling to get Karazhan down when Lich King hit, and never got far past heroics and the start of new Naxxramas in the last expansion.

The problem I ran into was that raiding was expensive and required a fairly large income stream of gold for potions and repairs. You got this income stream by playing the markets and by running daily solo quests. And trying to solo as a tank spec was positively painful.

It wouldn't be so bad if being a tank actually made you tough in the game. It didn't. It just meant that it took twice as long to kill anything, and this time factor always put you at greater danger of repops and adds. A single spellcaster mob added while you were beating on the mob you meant to pull caused a repair bill that would wipe out the benefit of running the quest. WoW's gear repair costs were especially burdensome to tanks in the game I left. Not sure if this has changed.

WoW's mechanics made tanking a chore in other ways as well. WoW's threat mechanic essentially made your teammates your real enemies. You were not the armored warrior you roleplayed. You were a Charlie Chaplin assembly line worker, trying desperately to keep your threat level above your teammates. The threat meter was your real foe.

The trinity is bad, m'kay? It turns the character classes needed for teaming and disfavored for soloing into prima donnas.

Posted: Apr 19th 2011 3:57PM nilsmmoblog said

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Great post.

The bribe will work. But it is also a very sad day for the game. As a game designer I'd be ashamed.

Posted: Apr 19th 2011 4:00PM Quarlo said

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My first couple of toons were DPS (hunter and 'lock) but once I made a tank, I was hooked. I loved the challenge of running dungeons and maintaining aggro to bring the dungeon to a successful conclusion.

I always marked the kill order (hot keys ftw), I always made sure the healer had mana before pulls and I always explained the boss fight strategy.

Then, the cross server LFD tool came out. Within a month I was burned out from WoW. It was like all the spite and disrespect of the WoW forums had invaded the game and tanking turned to ashes in my mouth.

Because of that tool, I cancelled my account. Deleted the game from my hard drive and have no intention of ever returning.

Posted: Apr 19th 2011 4:28PM Dracones said

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The game need a karma system. A way to be rewarded for being a "good" social player and a way for turds to be downvoted into obscurity.

Then if you have great karma you should be able to limit yourself to playing with others that have good karma.

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