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Reader Comments (91)

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 6:49AM Tatsuk said

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@(Unverified)

What mostly drove away my wife and myself is that we like to duo in a game; but in the case of Cata, it was either race to see who could one-shot the next mob to come along, or else head off in different directions to kill things singly. Having all the quests happening within steps of each quest hub was just the icing on the cake, as it were.
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Posted: Jan 15th 2012 7:13PM MetaReal said

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I totally agree about the lack of optional challenge while leveling. There's even the HIT stat to be sure to discourage you to attack a higher level mobs.

I'm right now leveling in SWTOR and while I probably won't call it "home" I really appreciate the level of challenge there. First there is no HIT stat. Second the world is filled with silver and gold elits and Heroics quests.
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Posted: Jan 18th 2012 7:31AM (Unverified) said

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@The Ogre

All subscription based games lost suubscriptions massively by the end of 2010.

EVE lost 30% of its players in 2011.

All thos others went FREE o play.

The fact WOW lost around 15% (1.7 M out of 12 M), is not a sign of anything in CATA.

it is just a sign subscription based games lose ground on free to play stuff.

Also : just look at Rift: a disaster in retention rate, and SW TOR will just prove this theory by losing 80% by summer time.

The subscription based games are coling to an end.

If WOW would go FREE to play, they would triple their player numbers in 2 months time...

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Posted: Jan 14th 2012 10:32PM Irem said

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It's interesting. Their success was built largely on the accessibility of the game, but it's like they didn't know where to stop, and they weren't able to figure out what was really keeping people. Hopefully they've hit on what they need to do to get the magic back.

Posted: Jan 14th 2012 10:47PM Pingles said

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Cataclysm's Quest system best in any game by far. The variety of Quests and the way they sprinkled Elite mobs in the quests was great game design.

Too linear? Dunno. I kinda played it as an arcade ride anyways.

Posted: Jan 14th 2012 11:20PM rhorle said

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Talk about selective reporting and creative writing. The comment regarding errors had nothing to do with the linear nature of cataclysm but with there being no reason to go out into the world with cataclysm.

How about reporting the truth instead of putting quote around one word to make it seem legit while everything outside of the quotes takes the comment completely out of context.

Writers, and articles, like this are reasons why blue's can rarely discuss anything with the players. Because people take simple and clear comments to mean anything they want which then spread such rumors which leads to disappointment.

Posted: Jan 14th 2012 11:26PM rhorle said

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@rhorle

In fact a simple page search of all blue responses (and posts/points quoted) in that thread (located at http://blue.mmo-champion.com/topic/215805-are-all-mmorpgs-like-this/) shows that the word Linear does not appear.


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Posted: Jan 14th 2012 11:28PM rhorle said

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@rhorle

I should get paid by massively for fact checking...

http://blue.mmo-champion.com/topic/215868-please-dont-make-all-questing-linear-gated/ is the thread you wanted which talks about the linear nature of quests and has a blue poster stating, "As Dave Kosak and others have said before, we think we may have gone a bit too linear with Cataclysm"
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Posted: Jan 14th 2012 11:58PM Dol said

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WOW cloning WOW = millions subs cancelled.

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 12:17AM Titan1 said

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This has always been the problem with MMO design from the start.
As much as I like TOR, the on rails at every point is really annoying.

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 12:35AM Kodiak said

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Way I see it is every expansion WOW is going to just mix the whole bag up as much as possible. Cata was class/talent redesigns and added a linear story mode questing (presumably to get a leg up on SWTOR by doing it "first"). Panda will be more class/talent redesigns and I'm sure some other new way of going about things.

Really it's the only thing to keep people coming back to the same game they've been playing for 7ish years now. Lets people fool themselves that they're playing a "different" WOW for a few months till they realize it's still the same game.

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 9:52AM AlienFanatic said

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@Kodiak

Such truth. WOW's expansions are like makeup. Yes, you can change the colors and the hues, but the underlying shape remains the same. Fast level to max, then raid, make alt, raid, make alt, raid.

----

If real life were like WOW, we'd spend the first twenty years of our lives playing with friends, exploring the back yard, eating bugs, and generally having a great time. At the age 20, we'd be offered a job with the caveat that only one job description (drone) is available. From there, we'd be ushered to a cubicle, where we'd be spending the rest of our career. Buck up, says our new boss, you can get promoted if you just hang with this job for awhile.

Looking in front of you, you'd see a stapler (crafting), a copier with nine sheets of paper (alts), and a pad of notebook paper (raiding). The boss assures you that it's all you'll need to be a happy, competent worker, so you sit down and start scribbling and copying and generally keeping busy.

After about six months, the boss drops by to give you more paper. Delighted that you have more paper, you remind the boss that copier's empty, but he tells you you can't have any more paper unless you pay for it yourself. (Well, he admits, you could always move you to a different desk, it's got the same stapler, copier, and pad of paper and you'd have to leave your paycheck and family photos behind.) Naw, you decide, it's just not worth it. Your remember, too, that you're out of staples, but nah, screw it, nobody even uses staples anyway.

Every so often, you arrive in the morning to find that find that the boss came in overnight and played around with your cubicle. He's changed the height of your chair, or he's messed with your monitor's settings, and one time he even tossed all of your papers in the air after getting drunk at the company Christmas party. Fortunately, he always leaves a note to explain why he did it and that you should just trust him because he knows about ergonomics more than you do. (Admittedly, the one he left at Christmas didn't really make sense, and you suspect that the Jackson Pollock artwork on the note is actually the aftermath of his conversation with the Man on the Big White Telephone.)

After two years, just as you're fed up and about to quit, the boss drops by, blindfolds you, and tells you it's time for your promotion. Hooray! He tells you that he's moved your cubicle to a different part of the building (and boy is the view spectacular!), and he assures you that really great things are ahead. As he grabs you by the hand and leads you through the maze of cubicles, your anticipation grows. At last, you feel your comfortable chair beneath you (hey, isn't it higher than it was yesterday?), and the boss whips the blindfold from your eyes. You beam as you look out at the new view, but the smile quickly fades as you look down at your desk. In front of you sits a brand-new stapler, your (empty) copier, and a brand new pad of paper.

----

I can't wait to see an MMO that finally decides that the end game isn't a job and that not everyone wants to be a hamster running the same maze over and over again for a dried up chunk of kibble.
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Posted: Jan 15th 2012 12:32PM (Unverified) said

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@AlienFanatic
I agree with this post so much, I read it to my spouse.
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Posted: Jan 15th 2012 12:46AM NeverDeath said

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Its talent design was especially linear.

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 1:28AM SgtBaker1234556 said

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You're welcome Eliot :-)

Now the matter itself is a two-sided coin. I believe they might have gone a bit too far in bubbling the zones into huge personal storylines. When a whole zone is "contained" like that, it makes grouping up very hard and you lose the feeling of being in open world, which, over the years, has been one huge advantage WoW has had over the other MMOs on the market.

You can clearly notice the design change when you enter 60-70 content in Outland. It's still using the "vanilla" paradigm of questing - and it's damn boring compared to the 1-60 content. But on the other hand, it feels like one big consistent World (funnily enough, considering the place is floating rock in another dimension).

I'm very much looking forward to Pandaria, and the leveling experience Blizzard can offer, having learned from these past mistakes.

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 2:00AM rhorle said

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@SgtBaker1234556

The problem you describe is less about the linear nature of quests and more about the location. The problem with cataclysm was that it wasn't contained on a continent so every zone wasn't connected through a "flow" of experiences. While each zone was connected through storyline and many referenced events in the next zone you would go to they were located "near each other".

You will always see linear questing because it works. Taking your through the story on a set path that leads to the various hubs and such along the way is a great model. The problem is when you don't have the zones near each other people for some reason feel a disconnect.

There is no difference between the story of the zones with Cata and Wotlk and the way the quests told those stories. Each zone contained its own story for the most part with connections to the over all story and the story of the next zone you would get to.

The difference is Wotlk took place on one continent, Cataclysm took place on several.
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Posted: Jan 15th 2012 5:57AM SgtBaker1234556 said

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@rhorle

I was talking about Outland, not Northrend though.

Phasing is cool, but doing too much of it results to what we have in Cata - the entire storyline within the zone becomes very linear and you hardly ever see anyone around - so the living world around you feels empty.

The difference of coming to Hellfire Peninsula after the new Cata zones is striking.
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Posted: Jan 15th 2012 10:16AM rhorle said

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@SgtBaker1234556

I never said you weren't talking about outlands. My point is people didn't have an issue with Wotlk yet they do with Cata. Bot employed the same "story through quests" that isn't just one big storyline through out all zones. Both employed linear questing.
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Posted: Jan 15th 2012 1:48AM slash beast said

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Haven't touched it since TBC.

The game's been linear ever since...

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 2:10AM scfs123 said

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"Give players reason to go out into the world"
Well they are giving us pokemon and pandas, maybe we'll get world housing o.O

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