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Reader Comments (91)

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 2:43AM (Unverified) said

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Blizzard has 2 main problems.

One, they essentially disenfranchised the Warcraft fan. WoW has always been bad about leaving hanging storyline (Missing Diplomat being just one example that was started in game, but finished in the comics instead of in game as promised), retconning just for the sake of retcons, not showing the story in game, and repeating the same plot points (Cataclysm gets Southshore destroyed to further the Alliance/Horde conflict, that doesn't happen in the game, so do the same with Theramore for MoP) and generally just not caring.

In Wrath and Cataclysm less than half the content discussed during the respective betas were actually implemented. Cataclysm was much worse than Wrath on this. No Kul Tiras. No resolution to the Andorhol situation. No Danath returning to confront Sylvanas over what she did to his nephew. No confrontation between Sylvanas and the Argent Crusade over the Forsaken replaguing what the Crusade has been cleansing. Let's also not forget the whole Neptulon storyline and the cancellation of the Abyssal Maw raid with the worse excuse possible.

There was also the glaring hypocrisy when they announced the delay of Firelands from being in patch 4.1 to patch 4.2 because they told the players that content was not being gotten through as fast as they thought, then a couple of weeks later in the Q1 investor call they say the exact opposite, that players are going through content faster than ever.

The second problem they have was them trying to make the game appeal to what I think of as Farmville-style casuals. Let me clarify, I do not mean time limited casuals who still want an immersive, lore driven experience. I mean people who are used to playing a game for 5 minutes and seeing instant rewards and not have to deal with any sort of storyline.

Ever since they started appealing to that crowd in Wrath, the game has not grown. It was stagnant subscriber wise in Wrath and we all know how much of a major slide Cataclysm has seen. The Q4 conference call soon will be very interesting.

And as for them going out in the world, the player base Blizz has cultivated hates that. They want to sit in Orgrimmar or Stormwind and queue up. Any travel is seen as awful. I have seen many people complain simply because it takes about 6 minutes to fly across the continent. If spending just 6 minutes traveling in an MMO is too much for someone, an MMO is not for that person.

Until Blizzard realizes they need to put the Warcraft story back in WoW, nothing will turn around for them.

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 9:16AM Irem said

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@(Unverified)
This comment deserves a standing ovation.
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Posted: Jan 15th 2012 2:53AM Amlin said

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I think Blizzard has simply lost touch with the community. They never rise up to the challenge of making the game and genre better. Instead they were comfortable sitting on their laurels until there was a suitable threat in the waiting in the wings and then and only then do they get a fire lit up on their feet.

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 7:02PM Borick said

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@Amlin They got distracted by the blitz and marketing of Blizzcon.

Blizzcon has become a beast that ought to be slain.
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Posted: Jan 15th 2012 3:55AM (Unverified) said

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It's always amusing how any post on Massively that includes the letters 'W.O.W.' brings all the haters and trolls swarming all over it.

Cataclysm was a great expansion marred by some oversights in the design process, and I agree that less-linearity in Mists of Pandaria would be much appreciated. Looking forward to it...not as much as Guild Wars 2 mind, but still looking forward!

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 5:44AM (Unverified) said

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@(Unverified)
I see some use the words haters and trolls applied to people when they criticize Cataclysm. If you think it's so good, please, explain in what way.

Was it the schizophrenic redesign of the old world zones with their mix of pre and post Cataclysm quests? Was it all the content, and story, they talked about in beta but left out?

I mean of Cataclysm was so good, why did 1.7 million leave it in the first 9 months after it's release? It certainly had nothing to do with the economy, that's been bad since 2008. Not to mention 2011 was a good year for games overall.
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Posted: Jan 15th 2012 4:10AM Zuljundwumn said

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@Every massively posters
Or...
OR...
Wow is just getting old, and like all old games, loses players to the other games.
I played Cataclysm, and although it has it's problems, let's be honest :You can't revolutionize anything about wow now.
Wow is Wow.
If they try to NGE their game, they'll definetly loose.

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 12:03PM Typhron said

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@Zuljundwumn

They already DID NGE their game. It was called "Cataclysm".

You saw how that went.
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Posted: Jan 15th 2012 4:58AM Miffy said

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I don't know any one who has played WoW since TBC, whenever I ask anyone they all say it ruined WoW.

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 9:18AM Irem said

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@Miffy
I love TBC. If I could be guaranteed the choice to remain in Outland forever, I might even go back to WoW.
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Posted: Jan 15th 2012 7:20PM Chareth Cutestory said

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@Miffy

TBC was great. I had a really hard time with WoW in vanilla (leveling a Rogue was a true pain, alone at 50+), so TBC reset and cemented a lot of my expectations from the game.

There was an insane quantity of soloable quest content. Every zone had a handful of cool group quests (all of which are solo quests, now). There were over a dozen dungeons, plus heroics. What stuck with me the most was the quest chains, though. Before Attunements were thrown under the bus, there were a few awesome quest chains for attuning to the various raids. Were they a pain to complete on alts? Sure, but that seems like a poor justification for doing away with them entirely.
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Posted: Jan 15th 2012 5:05AM dudes said

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End game was definitely linear. But leveling upto 58 had numerous pathways in different areas. I hope they can offer more choices in end game during MoP and beyond.

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 5:53AM Feathers said

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Blizzard is absolutley right and I am delighted they have seen it. While levelling my first char was a joy, subsequent alts have been horrible, and there's this slow build up of lvl80s waiting for the inevitable speed boost that should happen before MoP.

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 7:32AM Joaquin Crowe said

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But... linearity is innovation! A press release told me so!

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 10:29AM Nepentheia said

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@Joaquin Crowe

Hah, yeah exactly! x-D

And now, according to Blizzard, 'not being linear' is the Next Big Profound Innovation in MMOs. *rolls eyes*
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Posted: Jan 15th 2012 9:14AM AlienFanatic said

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WOW feels a lot like a high-speed motorcycle whose handlebar has begun to shimmy. The cyclist must attempt to correct the wobbling, or the bike will crash and throw the rider. Either Blizzard will correct the wobbling properly, or they'll make it worse than ever. The smart cyclist will try to moderate their correction so as not to over-compensate, but at some point no matter how delicate they think they're being, the wobble will fly out of control and a crash is inevitable.

The question in my mind is whether or not we've reached the point where WOW has wobbled so much, it's going to throw the rider. (Personally, I think it's been a great, long ride but WOW is definitely entering a phase where the best parts of the ride are behind them.)

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 10:28AM Greyhame said

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WoW was fun, but now it's really just boring for me. The linearity of the questing doesn't bother me (I like the contained stories you go through, I just wish more connected between zones sometimes) but at the same time it was too linear in that you absolutely needed to do X to see Y with phasing cutting things off that you need at max level if you want to effectively raid.

The other problem (which started in Wrath) was the overall story of the entire game. Their story is all kinds of messed up right now due to wanting to try to do two things:
1) Have the factions at war with one another to the point where they need to work together
2) Have big bad villians that really need both factions to work together to take down.
Those two things do not work terribly well together when trying to the types of stories they have been, which leads to either the player factions being entirely irrelevant (which really is what happened) or the big bad guy not being much of a threat in the first place. This has made me loose interest in the story because it's starting to really make no sense. I doubt MoP will fix that hugely without the big bad, but who knows. Add the chains that really are nothing more than blatant pop culture references that take up a significant portion of a zone's story, and you get a group of people who seem to not really care at all about their game world.

The other problem for me is that the things they do to try and make questing more interesting (the vehicles, bombing runs, etc.) really don't. What makes questing interesting for me is the story that goes along with it. What makes it repeatable for me is the story that goes with it, not the various different ways I can do kill or collect quests.

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 12:16PM Sorithal said

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@Greyhame

Also, story-wise, there are so many cliches -.- Starcraft 2: Wings of Liberty was also full of them to where I'm thinking Blizzard's writers are trying too hard to deliver twists or such.

I mean, Muradin was pretty much dismissed as dead up until Wrath of the Lich King, where it turns out he wasn't impaled by ice. He was just knocked over the head with it. So he becomes an amnesiac. The Lich King's whole thing makes me wonder if Chris Metzen watched Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End repeatedly. Y'know, the whole "There will always need to be a Davy Jones!" stuff. Only replace it with Lich King.

Also, every good villain in the game seemed to devolve into some sort of overly crazed madness. I guess villains in Azeroth have a hard time keeping their sanity or something. Heck, it seems even Nozdormu is going to eventually become a boss due to falling to some form of corruption ( http://www.wowwiki.com/Murozond ).

Oh, and that one boss level Archbishop in Stormwind? SURPRISE HE'S AN AGENT OF DEATHWING ALL THIS TIME! So you get to kill him too. Sigh.

Oh, and apparently the Old Gods can't really "die" without destroying Azeroth in the process or something like that. Plus Thrall suddenly turned into some sort of "chosen one" who is now so powerful that he apparently ascended to the level of a Super Shaman. After, y'know, tossing aside his leadership over the Horde that he had helped build up.

Then, the most cliche thing (which they already did once with the Night Elves at the end of Warcraft 3, which... was just copied from the fate of the Elves in the Lord of the Rings and such) happens with the Dragon Aspects after the Deathwing encounter (which from what I watched, was basically just "DPS DEATHWING'S TENTACLES DOWN BEFORE HE DESTROYS THE WORLD!") - Aka they lose their immortality and they say the whole "the age of mortals has begun" thing.

And Thrall apparently is going to have a child. Who I'm guessing will grow up to be Luke Skywalker 2.0 (or maybe he'll just join Arthas and several other Blizzard lore characters on the Anakin train).
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Posted: Jan 15th 2012 7:09PM Chareth Cutestory said

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@Sorithal

I think my issues with how "story" is treated in WoW started in Wrath.

Before Wrath, it felt like every dungeon was its own little story. Some of them would tie in to the overall plot, but they didn't need to smack you in the face with it at the start of every boss encounter.

Having everything so immediately tied to Arthas or Deathwing can make environments with wildly disparate appearances feel all too similar.

It would be nice to get the impression (as I did in Vanilla and BC) that some of the areas, characters and bosses exist for reasons more diverse than to serve the expansions "big bad."
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Posted: Jan 15th 2012 12:01PM Wispur said

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WoW could never be as linear as SWTOR. SWTOR was like playing a really simple single player game. Like old school NES Mario Bros where you have one direction only and that's that.

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