| Mail |
You might also like: WoW Insider, Joystiq, and more

Reader Comments (101)

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 10:35PM Irem said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@(Unverified)
"The way I see it is that if the devs gave us all that we want all the time right from the get go, we'd get bored of the game and demand even more outrageous features... this way the delayed gratification factor keeps people interested... or at least that seems to be the idea."

That really only works when they plan to implement said features at some point, and by "at some point" not mean "years down the line when we have no other choice." Teasing stuff isn't a bad idea in and of itself, but a good company can strike a balance between giving players what they want and ask for and coming up with new content and features further down the line. In Blizzard's case it feels more like they just had a very set idea of how much freedom, control, and customization they wanted players to have, and had no plans to go ahead with anything that would change that.
Reply

Posted: Aug 26th 2011 2:07PM Vandal said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Rayko Agreed 100% there. The current developers really think they are personally responsible for the enormous success of WoW forgetting that they inherited the foundations of the game's popular pre level-cap content from previous Blizz employees who have since left.

They still think the only important thing is to shove their gear-grind, raid-centric, gameplay down the masses throats while ignoring what their customers want. The signs of this are clear with the years it took them to respond to big things (like PvP) and the little things (like appearance tabs) not to mention the continuous flawed attempts to get people to raid with the Dungeon Finder (to gear them up) and the raid guides (to explain what they should do).
Reply

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 8:20AM Kall550 said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Its an obvious need. Im sure a lot of MMO players owned an armour set that they loved the look of but had to move on from it when they outleveled the armour.
What about that amazing looking set apart from that one piece that looks awful? A strange hat or curly shoes that was part of the complete set and needed for the stats. Even for swapping the look of that one odd item out means its definitely worth including in all MMOs.
Id like to see this in SWTOR but I understand why they're going for the chest peice colour match up. I guess they dont want to see jedi in hot pants like in SWG, which wasn't always a bad thing if the person who dressed the character has taste.

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 9:47AM Yellowdancer said

  • 1 heart
  • Report
@Kall550

I think its more that the engine they are using is truely garbage and would take a lot of work to break and build appearance tabs in. Its probably one of those long term projects they have on the wall of crazy.
Reply

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 8:20AM Ehra said

  • 3 hearts
  • Report
"When you think about it, the implementation of an appearance tab is a signal that, on some level, the initial game design has failed to deliver. It's an admission that the best gear often looks like crap -- or is too prevalent -- and many players wouldn't be caught dead wearing it if there were any alternative."

Why would it mean that, and not just the game designers realize that different people will always have their preferences and would like to be able to choose how they look without sacrificing performance?

Blizzard themselves use to argue against having an appearance tab or similar feature because they claimed implementing such a feature would make it pointless to develop further loot art. That only makes sense if you honestly believe that you can't make any future art that players would prefer to use over others, which on one hand is likely false and on the other is extremely sad to hear coming from such a big budget developer.

If anything I'd say implementing appearance tabs shows an understanding that art/taste is subjective, instead of "forcing" players to wear the "better" gear/art on their characters.

More and more this is becoming an important feature to me. Even if it's not through actual appearance tabs, just some way to customize how players look without losing functionality (even the original Guild Wars' model where you can find max level versions of all of the weapon art is acceptable to me).

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 8:35AM Irem said

  • 3 hearts
  • Report
@Ehra
All of this. I may absolutely love the newest tier of whatever-gear, but that doesn't mean I want to wear it all the time, or that it suits all of my characters. I always thought Blizzard's stance on cosmetic armor was pretty ridiculous, because all it accomplished was making their art team's hard work obsolete as soon as the next tier of gear came out.

I don't think anything that adds more options for individual character customization can really be a failure of game design. When I first started playing WoW, I was drawn to Hunter because I could name my pet and choose which type and skin I wanted. Just that little edge of ability to show some individuality was a big enough deal to keep me coming back to the class on almost every other character I rolled.
Reply

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 12:22PM Utakata said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Irem

It seems appearance tabs that new and newer MMO's offer are exposing Blizz's many strawmen they have built up over the years about this. The ideas that appearance tabs would be exploited in PvP, diminish the art assets of gear designs and/or devalue the meaning of "hard earned" epic gear seem to evaporate...when held up to other games who do not appear to have any these issues with personalized character customizations.
Reply

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 6:44PM Irem said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Utakata
Not trying to rip too hard on WoW, but I imagine this isn't going to be the only case of that going forward. There's a lot of stuff the playerbase has argued with them over for years that they gave flimsy or nonsensical reasons for avoiding, and now there are more and more games that people can point to and say, "But look, they did it, and it's fine" (RIFT having cross-faction communication in /say is another example, and something WoW RPers have asked for the option to do for a long time).
Reply

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 10:05PM Utakata said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Irem

Oh I completely agree. Again, Blizz has made lots of *strawmen arguements on various aspect of their game that is now other games are doing without the issue Blizz claims it would cause.

Being the biggest game in town for awhile, made it very difficult to argue against some of their more dubios decisions and explanations. They could get away with it. But they're not the only big game in town anymore. And more will be had on the horizon. All potentially shining the light on Blizz's demon haunted reasonings...as those games will advance and evolve in dynamic gameplay and democracy, that will put Blizz's retentive development likely to shame.

*Note: The money sinks being another example of this, which has never preveted or curbed any inflation on AH as Blizz has claimed. Buy a stack of Copper Ore now and compare that buying the same stack back in Vanilla. On some servers this has increased 10 fold if not more in gold. Hense the strawman. Trion in RIFT has done away with most money sinks, as in there's really no money issue...and as far as I am aware, there is really no infaltion issue as well. /shrug
Reply

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 12:45AM Celtar said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Utakata

They needed to allow cross faction communication in WoW as soon as they allowed "both faction play" on pvp servers. Because once they did allow that, you had players just logging in their alt cross faction character to whine at you about your killing them. (Personally I was always against allowing both faction play on the same pvp server but that is another topic)

Reply

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 8:20AM Nandini said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
What in the world are "appearance tabs"? I assume from the article that it has something to do with cosmetic equipment that doesn't affect combat. Is there some popular game where this is implemented as "appearance tabs"?

In any case, whatever they are or however they are implemented, I think they're a welcome addition to any game.

If players didn't care how their characters looked, they'd always accept the default choices during character creation, and wouldn't whine when those options are limited.

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 8:26AM Ehra said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Nandini

I'm not sure if you're being serious or not, especially considering your avatar is from LOTRO :p
Reply

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 8:53AM Nandini said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Ehra In LOTRO, gear can be equipped cosmetically in "outfits". I've just never heard of anything specifically called "appearance tabs" before, which is mentioned 3 times in this article. It's not how WoW's transmogrification feature will be implemented either.

When I first saw the words "appearance tabs" in the headline, I thought they referred to some kind of UI customization feature. The article goes on to make it clear that it has to do with gear. I'm just curious what the original source is for this term the author seems to use so generically.
Reply

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 9:05AM Ehra said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Nandini

They've since changed how the character screen UI is layed out, but different "outfits" use to be separate tabs on your character screen that you would click on to switch between.

http://mmohuts.com/wp-content/gallery/lotro-overview/the-lord-of-the-rings-online-character-journal.jpg

You can see the tabs on the right side. I'd imagine this is where the terminology came from.
Reply

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 9:11AM Jef Reahard said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Nandini

Tabs/slots/custom outfits/etc.

My fault on the terminology there, that's just what I've been calling them for years now. I meant any method of customizing your avatar via clothing/armor.
Reply

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 9:13AM chauncy said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Ehra That's where I first picked up the term, definitely.
Reply

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 8:24AM Dunraven said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I think the whole point is not to have 95% of your Armor look like a Bob Macke "Fabulous" acid trip in the first place. It's almost like the designers went out of their way for it to be so.

"Hey you just reached level 60 and have successfully obtained you Teir set... congratulations here is the Chiquita outfit from pride day."

That is the main reason people want appearance tabs in WoW at least.. My personal opinion is most players want to look cool or badass, and Blizzard never bought that to the table.

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 8:41AM Irem said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Dunraven
Yeah, I -do- think Jef probably has a point about customizable armor being necessary because of flawed design where WoW, specifically, is concerned. Some of their tier sets are very nice, but as time goes on they've become more and more ridiculous. Back during Wrath one of the devs was commenting about starting low-key with PvP set designs, because if they didn't, by the third set or so people would be "wearing Thrall on their heads," and I was kind of like, can't you just curb the urge to put massive cups of flame and crap all over everything? There's a reason I wanted to just wear a lot of the high-end BC armor forever, and that's because while it looked impressive, it also still bore some resemblance to -clothes-.
Reply

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 8:52AM j1083 said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Irem Still, I'd really enjoy Jef Reahard showing me his singular armor design that pleases everyone.
Reply

Posted: Aug 23rd 2011 9:07AM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Irem Still, I'd really enjoy Jef Reahard showing me his singular armor design that pleases everyone.

For years the Wow forums have been filled with "please make the armor more basic comments". As a former Wow player I loved my tier 1 set for hunter from pvp. EVERY set I have had since that point has been ugly and even the tier 1 pvp set was too over the top. Blizzard has been adamant about not giving people options that they could implement regarding the look of their armor. If they had simply done what a large portion of their players have asked for in the last 7 years they could have saved a great deal of trouble having sets created that people Hated. You can't tell me that this current system is that hard to put into usage. And you can't possibly say that allowing people to alter the color of their armor was difficult either. Blizzard has simply executed a "we know better than you" policy for almost everything they have done since inception. And hell they have an 11 million subscriber base (which is finally dissolving since people can see there are much better games coming out now) so maybe they _were_ right.
Reply

Featured Stories

Engadget

Engadget

Joystiq

Joystiq

WoW Insider

WoW

TUAW

TUAW