Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Outsider look

I've been  cut off of WoW for several days due to work trip: no checking AH's, no second guessing the quests, no killing AI driven mindless mobs.

Just being and working.

It's quite refreshing, really. After reading Dechion's excellent post on answer to Kestrel's as excellent question I've noticed how the game has let off it's hold on me. The competition season for the dogs is looming ahead, the new blog is starting to gain momentum and honestly speaking the weather is working against playing for hours on end. And then I read Oakstout's remarkably interesting rants . Both of them.

The latter really blew my mind.

Is it really so that we're getting bored on WoW because it's dumbed down to the basics and made as easy and available to all so that all other games which try to offer us some different experience feel too hard, unplayable and strange to us? That's the thought that popped up in to my mind after reading and thinking about the latter post Oakstout put out.

And in a sense I agree. All the games that are released nowadays are being compared to the 1k pound gorilla called WoW, which after four years of tweaking and patching with YAP's (yet another patch , term coined by Tobold and very descriptive in WoW) is being compared to the games released with at least as many bugs and twitches as WoW had after it's second expansion. One could ask if that's fair, but then again you always compare the newcomer to the market leader, whether it's jeans, soda or MMO.

Note that I deliberately left the RPG off, because IMO WoW has been turned more into a persistent world arcade game (MMOPWAG) rather than MMORPG. Go figure, I'm not the first one to claim that.

Now I feel like an outsider, after a few days off the hook. I know that when I return back home I will sit by the computer, trying to find reasons to quit playing WoW and I cannot come up with any.

The big question would be, why do I play it then.

I play because I want to see the content, want to play with my brothers and good friends and because WoW is very familiar. The familiarity is the card that plays the biggest role if I take the social connections off the equation.

How about you? Do you play only because you enjoy the pointless and endless gear updates or because you have some social connections to check within the game? Has WoW turned more into a social connectivity tool than a MMORPG?

Friday, April 24, 2009

I'm not the only one

Just leafed through the blog reader this morning and came across an excellent post from Oakstout who's insight I have admired over some time already. Now he writes about an issue I have posted about time and again: how the levelling speed is so rapid that players -involuntary- over level the content and the possibility to learn the game, their class and their character.

I full agree with Oakstout on the fact that Blizzard is clearly neglecting the old content, only focusing on the newest addition to the ever expanding world. It cannot be that the heroes are no more needed in the Old World, because the same threats lurk still around to be killed.

So I'm not the only one who is bothered by that. But is it really so that it bothers only us who are not involved in the endless end game galore?

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Reconsidering current end game

MMO's are considered to be games. WoW is no exception in that, even though most of the content is heavily soloable and the norm is to power level to the level cap with the aid of addons and guides. If we're very strict about it, MMO's lack something that games have typically in common: winning conditions. In that sense they are more akin to the pen and paper roleplaying games, in which the game refers more to the way of interacting with the story and rules than to the winning conditions and actually winning "the game". In addition to all that, games with set winning conditions are usually played for leisure or spur of the moment. They can be taken out for a quick game, as well as the solo computer and console games.

As the MMO's have evolved to the current stage, where the end game is considered to be The Game, and the levelling game, which in roleplaying games is the main interest, is just a tutorial to raiding, the concept of a MMORPG has changed a bit. At least in WoW you cannot learn to play your character, class or the encounters by playing anymore, at least not as effectively as the rest of the population or raid expects you to. You character is scrutinized before you are accepted to a raid team, and usually this is preceded with clear questions on how and what you have raided before: newbies don't bother.

Because of this requirement that you have to master the flavour of the month talent build, know the encounters by heart so you can dance the right dance and have the experience to support the knowledge, the game has lost something of it's fascination to some. It's not a game, casual entertainment or pass time anymore.

It has become a hobby.

To be able to play the game of "End Game Raiding", you have to level your character to the level cap as efficiently as possible. This is so that you don't waste your time in the levelling game and get bored with the repeating quests. Next you have to spend your time in reading the guides and websites describing the most efficient talent builds, the gear and glyphs to support them and in addition to that, learn to play the specifications. You have to train yourself to play the character at the maximum level with the best possible efficiency.

And in raiding the main thing isn't to kill the boss, but to be the best in DPS, TPS, HPS or whatever your class is specified to do. The main thing is to be able to do your character's job better than the last time and preferably better than the guy next to you (in the raid roster).

Isn't this exactly what you do in any other hobby: You gather information, train your skills and try to do your best and improve yourself?

So what makes MMO's more a game than a hobby?

Computers and computer games are not considered to be hobbies for some reason or another. Reading, riding or playing chess are hobbies, however. Playing games is considered equal to watching TV: mindless waste of time while being 'entertained'.

Which it really is in the end.

Stargrace pointed out to me in Twitter the other day, that there is so much creative talent in the people who play MMO's. My response to was that the games actually deprive us from using that creativity, as we are spending our time in using other peoples' creations instead of creating ourself.

The question is: are the MMO's becoming a real hobby or are they just waste of time comparable to cheap TV-serial?

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Dual-Spec glyph honeymoon over?

I was checking my Actioneering Alt, Copramo, yesterday and noticed that the glyph market is cooling down. Fast. At the same glyph you could have the high price of 25g and the lowest selling price at 78s.

I wonder if the 'new' reset of the talents causes any kind of hike in there?

Most probably not. Hope to sell the cheapo glyphs out and go along with the business as usual: vendor, convert, disenchant and resale. That's my Auctioneer Search rotation.

It works, but takes about 45 minutes to complete with a scan. All away from my questing.

What a bliss!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Content devaluation

Like I've stated so many times, I have no characters at level cap. And I sincerely doubt that I will not be having any soon. So my thoughts are very much biased and like I responded just sometime ago in one of my older posts , I'm pretty crossed about playing a MMO as single player game which has all the elements of a great storytelling in game but is very inadequately executed.

Now I noticed something that I haven't seen discussed in anywhere in the net. Not now and from the earlier incident I don't know about: I mean the fact that the new expansion has voided 2 levels of former content. When The Burning Crusade came out, you gained the permission to enter the Outlands at level 58, immediately gaining better gear in green loot than you got from the former end game raiding. If not exactly better, but at least with less effort, as the raiding element was removed. This however voided the 58-60 content effectively, and it's now even more neglected, even though the best stories seem to be confined into those quests (Mind you, I haven't seen Northrend).

Now with The Wrath of the Lich King the same has happened: you can enter Northrend at level 68 (at least that's the level where the entry quests start), and I have noticed in Outlands that there is no interest to even PUG the Netherstorm instances. Let alone The Isle of Quel'Danas, with it's interweaving storylines which were introduced to keep the raiding people happy in the wait for the WotLK: it's all empty and void.

The achievements have made some changes in this, as people are desperately trying to get all the instance and raid boss kills for the achievements. But none of the lower level instances are run by the appropriate level toons anymore, and to offer to join Ahn'Qiraj for example at level 69 is considered more of a joke than anything (based on personal experience: my warrior has been turned down twice from raid forming).

So the more content is voided, the more people are forced to solo up. Like I stated in my former post, I can see the overwhelmed and dumbfounded newcomers at level cap, wondering how, where, why, what and getting responses like "read Elitist Jerks, noob, and learn your specs". The quality of the level capped population will drop, if it already hasn't started to do so.

So the content in levels 58-60 and 68-70 are voided, because the overlapping content of the expansion rewards the player more. This is understandable design feature, because the level capped population has already seen the former end game content for so long time. I see this, however, as a slap to the face on the newcomers or the people playing first time around: there is vast amount of content (and work put in it), which is neglected by the majority of the player population.

My only question is, is this clever? And if it is, what are the reasons?

It really is beyond me.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Even more dumbed down

Ok. Here comes. My first thoughts about 3.1.

The game is even more dumbed down. Granted, the legendary bottleneck's to advance First Aid and Fishing were a drag, both of them, but they served their purpose: the infamous Triage showed how 'easy' it is to heal a crapload of people at once to all, and the Nat Pagle quest chain forced people to visit four zones of which they normally would have neglected at least two.

On the other end of the road, the levelling seems to have speeded up a bit again. What bothers me about this is the fact that the much revered and beloved dual-speccing, which has now saved the level capped people from utter and final boredom and allows them to test and run in different roles in the end game instances, is actually going to dumb down the level capping newcomers even more, if possible. The term "n00b" will get yet another meaning.

Just think about it. Dual specs come available at level 40, and within a very short time we'll see that this -now obligatory thing- will become mandatory to all passing that level. Why? Simply because the level capped people levelling their alts have the knowledge to require versatility in the groups they are forming in Outlands. And even before that. This, however, leads to the situation in which the new player, who has been ushered through the already too fast tutorial of learning to play the character class properly, is forced to learn another, possibly completely different way of playing the same class. Shadowpriest bent on holy healing comes to my mind as the first. Feral druid forced to play restoration. The combinations are limitless.

This will either create a bottleneck, where the complexity of the game becomes too much for the casual gamer and they just rush through the content, grouping even less, or they quit, because the compexity takes the fun out of the game.

I'm not too over joyed about the dual specs, and most probably will just ignore the whole thing. I want to play my tank as a tank and my holy priest as a holy priest till my eyes bleed.

The other thing this dual spec causes is the money sink. Formerly the sink in lv40 was the mount: at the advent of WotLK this was lowered to lv30. This is just a minor thing, costing something around 80-90g to learn the skill and purchase your first mount, but to that level it's a HUGE amount of money. Unless you are playing two games at the same time: levelling and AH flipping. Now, add to that the incredible dual spec cost of 1000g: that hurdle will be next to impossible to overcome at that level. Ok, it's pebbles to the player with nth lv80 toon, but for the newcomer (or casual gamer) that is just enormous amount of money. Combined with the huge cost of lv40 talents... just too much.

The earning rate hasn't increased at the same time as the speed of gaining experience. And that is a vast problem which I believe will increase the churn rate.

There is still one thing hindering the playing which they could remove and make the life easier, especially to those who are levelling: take the level restrictions off from the professions. Make every crafting recipe available to all, creating a situation in which everyone could do everything in the two main professions they have. Cheers and celebrations. And at the same time, they could do something about the usability of the crafted gear altogether.

After all, all other restrictions have been taken off already. Time to dumb the game down to bones, right?

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Blasting through boredom

Laiskajaakko took a different route yesterday: I set his foot upon the Teldrassil lian soil, making the Night-Elf starting area, Shadowglen . In a breeze the beginning area was cleared and he was parked for rest in Dolanaar inn.

What a joy it is to put the lv1 and 2 creatures out of their misery with a nicely placed Thunderclap. Or watch the scurrying little spiders bite themselves dead on this hero's armor.

Reputation run can be fun when you don't anything else to do except curse for the UI that has yet again failed you after the patch, even though each and every AddOn works perfectly.

Oh, yes, and why the heck has Auctioneer been included in updates? It broke immediately after the update.

Shame on you, Curse.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

My current "perfect" MMO game

I promised earlier to write a separate post about my perfect MMO. As it happens, I will combine this with the task posted in the 31 Days to Build a Better Blog and make it a list post. I suppose it will be a long one, so bear with me.

Tobold posted also about the RPG concept in WoW , though from a point of view I haven't noticed yet. That's because I haven't raided yet. But as soon as I read the post, certain things clicked: the dungeons and instance bosses are more videogamey than roleplaying gamey. I agree with him to the point that MMORPG's are more based on general videogame concepts than roleplaying, as I described in my earlier post. The single player experience is not that of immersion, but that of achieving something more in the game. Sure, pen and paper roleplaying was full of anticipation of the next level abilities and the possibility to gain the ultimate weapon/armour/gear to overcome the main villain. But the journey was more important than the destination, and as the commenters in the forementioned Tobold's post stated, the D&D modules that were initially written for sale, the game itself was more of the heroic story of the group or one character in the group.

Great RPG experience was more akin a good fantasy novel than a hack and slash session.

Now to My current view of the "perfect" MMORPG:

1. Intriguing setting. Something that invites you to explore and find out the lore, story and the background. For me the first computer game equivalents of this were Albion and the first Silent Hill. Why, where, what and when. This being said, the genre isn't that important, the setting can be as well fantasy, sci-fi or contemporary.
2. Growing storyline. Character should be involved in a developing story that makes the player feel s/he's accomplishing something great and wondrous. Even though Tigole claims that the players want to see their minimap blinking yellow at the quest hub, I strongly disagree: if the storyline is inviting the player to find out what comes next, it's at least more motivating.
3. Meaningful decision making. Every decision should have an impact in the evolving story. You could even have two or more possibilities to continue the chain, and no possibility to come back to change the current character's story. The faction/people group reactions should reflect your decisions, with appropriate ripple effect from the point the decision is made: with this I mean that the impact of the decision should be less profound the farther you go from the point.
4. No levels, but a reasonable way of gaining expertise. My personal favourite ever in pen and paper games was the Chaosium 's Basic Roleplaying system , in which you had the possibility to gain more expertise every time you used a skill. Possibility got smaller every time you got closer to the maximum, making the maximum almost impossible to reach in normal gaming. Original Call of Cthulhu utilized this system, and it's IMO still the best pen and paper RPG devised.
5. Open storylines. Goes well with points 2 and 3: your decisions open new opportunities and you can drop the line. This means closing that particular line for some indefinite time, maybe even returning you back to the former story after gaining more information and/or experience in the ways of the world.
6. Basically independant of gear. Meaning that there are several different swords, but they basically do the same damage from level to level. It's more of a question of skill, the characters skill, how much damage s/he inflicts. In fantasy setting this leads however to the next point.
7. Unique gear. The unique or named gear should be such. Not like in WoW that you have umpteen Neriak's Supernumerary Stickers in the AH. There would be only one, and until that one is disenchanted, destroyed or discarded, there would be no others. This could lead to the interesting possibility to have someone really collect the unique gear...
8. Collections, shinies and dingies. Fluff and something to keep players interested in the overall world itself. EQ2 did this exceptionally well, I loved it.
9. Player housing and guild housing is a must.
10. Guilds and co-operation should be emphasized and made easy. I'm still wondering how WoW hasn't copied the system EQ2 has for this.
11. One character per server/world. Makes your experience as player unique.
12. Some way to reward for not dying without actually punishing for it. Then again, permadeath would be permissible if the setting would account for it.
13. Open Sandbox to explore and do things in. This was omitted from my first version: freedom to do asa you please, only the stories from quests to guide you on. Freedom to interact, work and do when and what you like to.

That was the initial list, out from the hat. It's not complete and I could define and refine it endlessly. All of the areas are not yet reasonable to expect from the current MMO architecture and technical side, but I can dream.

My dream is a level-less MMORPG set in 1930's, with prohibition, mobs, sinister cults, mad scientists and evil aliens. Call of Cthulhu with permadeath or insanity, in which you could leave a will to leave inheritance to your characters distant relative, with whom you could continue the story, creating her/his OWN story from the remains of your former character.

One thing that I would like to see is something that was introduced in a Finnish novel for young people: in that novel the MMO world was built in chapters. One chapter lasted for one real time year, developing the story to the next chapter, all the while depending on the players activities (like Sunwell Offensive in WoW). The 'story' itself would take three chapters to complete, after which the game would reset completely. Technically still challenging, but possible. A Tale in the Desert does this already, but to see a MMORPG set like this...

That would be something.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The more I play...

The more I play WoW, the more I hate the game. The soloability is excellent, but it's very hollow and empty. Kill ten foozles to get killing ten foozles. Maybe even kill fifty foozles to loot ten dohickles.

Not very interesting, really.

Add to that the fact that the current experience gains are so immense that you outlevel your content faster than ever. Laiskajaakko, my warrior, just dinged lv69 and has only done questing -serious questing- in two areas of the Outlands: Hellfire Peninsula and Netherstorm. All the rest has come from Old World or Hellfire Citadel. Ok, a couple of Mana Tombs and Shethekk Halls, but that's all.

Alone the questing is boring: either it's grinding boredom or running around the world boredom. The only bright spots in the mix are the few and scarce brilliant storylines that span over several quests, like The Battle of Darrowshire (still incomplete!) and Missing Diplomat. In Outlands there are few of those, too, but overall the amount of available quests just blurs the stories and questlines. You get to a quest hub and even though Tigole claims that players love to see their minimaps full of yellow exclamation marks, it really makes the scriptwriters job go down the drain: instead of having a few well thought out and involving stories the player is faced with ten plus separate storylines that cross or don't cross with each other. No wonder people don't take the time to read the quest text...

The only reason I'm playing is my brothers. Just duoing with either of them for a half an hour or a hour gives me more than several hours alone, including the bothersome PUGs.

Why cannot the grouping be easier and more rewarding? Sure it's rewarding already, as the speed to grind through the quests already makes levelling even faster, but...

I don't want to level faster! I want to experience the content, of which I'm depraved because there are no players in the older instances anymore!

Oh, crap. Time to take my medication. Maybe tomorrow I'll continue the 31 day posts.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Public Announcement

Unless anything special happens, I won't be blogging for about a week. First of all, I'm travelling for this week and then the Easter holidays spoil the fun.

Happy Easter, until we meet again.

31 Day Challenge started

As so many other bloggers (over 9500 I think) have taken the Problogger's 31 Day Challenge, I'm hereby admitting of being one of those. I have felt that this blog could use some revamping both on the content and the quality, so I'm trying my best to live up to the course and develop the blog.

Hopefully myself on the side, too.

The first challenge posed is to write an Elevator Pitch: a short introduction about the blog and why it is there. Matticus  and Kestrel have at least revised theirs, so I'm in a good company.

What can I say about this blog. I'm writing about my experiences and thoughts about World of Warcraft. From the viewpoint of a newcomer. From a viewpoint of an ESAK. From a viewpoint of social casual gamer with family.

Now, how to combine the definitions I just mentioned...?

Some taglines to replace the old one:

  • BullCopra: World of Warcraft as seen by a social, casual gamer dad.
  • BullCopra: Much bull about World of Warcraft
  • BullCopra: No horns, but casual gaming in WoW.
How do I explain the blog in less than 150 words (hey, I could use Twitter to check these!):

BullCopra is my personal blog about my experiences and thoughts about World of Warcraft and issues I see and experience while playing as a casual gamer with family.

Wow. Less than 30 words.

My blog is my view of the games I play, especially World of Warcraft and MMO's, and it's emphasis is on the exploration, social community and issues I encounter in the games as a curious and casual gamer dad.

Better. But I just read Kestrel's elevator pitch and find mine inadequate.

BullCopra is a blog about World of Warcraft through the eyes of casual gamer dad, who's interest in the game lies in the social gaming, exploring the content and finding ways to improve the game as whole. I write the blog for the casual gamer from the viewpoint of how the newcomer, viewing the game from my own first timer experience. Occasionally I may write about something else touching my gamer life, like other games or game news in general.

80 words. And I think I got it all in there.


Tagline will be the first one, as it will be easy to change as soon as the game of my choice changes. Not soon, that is.

BullCopra: World of Warcraft as seen by a social, casual gamer dad.

The Elevator Pitch
BullCopra is a blog about World of Warcraft through the eyes of casual gamer dad, who's interest in the game lies in the social gaming, exploring the content and finding ways to improve the game as whole. I write the blog for the casual gamer from the viewpoint of how the newcomer, viewing the game from my own first timer experience. Occasionally I may write about something else touching my gamer life, like other games or game news in general.

Did I get it as you have viewed this blog?

Monday, April 6, 2009

Another weekend, another level

Yup. Played during weekend and like I tweeted earlier, I did manage to get something done ingame. Got Laiskajaakko up to lv68. And got his bs and mining up to decent level: not up to Outlands, yet, but up and coming.

Went on a PUG to Mana Tombs, and noticed this out levelling problem again: within that one run in a beautiful and short instance I gained half a level without noticing. So currently it's quite possible to out level the whole content of Outlands just by pugging with decent people and running the instances in succession. I remember people reporting that Outlands was easy to level, but this is ridiculous. I've already passed almost all areas except Hellfire Peninsula and I'm almost out of the proper level range for the whole Outlands!

Ok, I took the scenic route to Netherstorm: I just love the visuals of the Blade's Edge Mountains and Netherstorm: finally the eye candy I was waiting for Burning Crusade to be! Next time I play -and have some spare time- I'll just run around Blade's Edge and admire the scenery.

Back to the Mana Tombs: I went there as a complete noob, because I really don't remember anything about the place from my initial run. Either I was too tired, too drunk or both (most likely), but the whole Mana Tombs was just a blur. The PUG I was invited to (!) consisted of lv69 warrior, lv66 Pally, lv63 Druid and lv65 Warlock. Pally was the healer and honestly speaking he did great job. First time I have enjoyed the company of a paladin, ever.

But the rest of the group: Warlock was ok, did adequate dps on all mobs. The druid, while in cat form (feral he was I thinks), performed up to the level he could. But the other warrior. The three levels above me, his DPS was lacking from mine, his TPS was several hundreds below mine and overall, his performance was something I kept wondering about. His spec was arms/prot, which should be very viable tanking spec as far as I understand. But his DPS and overall damage were below mine all the time! Even the Druid was better in some battles!

I couldn't help but wondering.

But then again, we did great: two wipes, one because I didn't pay attention to the Pandemonius' void shifting period (well, neiher did anyone else...) and another because of a bad pull from the other warrior. So yes, the tanks ruined the run this time. Everything else were just pushovers for the team.

Would have been nice to run the rest of Auchindoun with this PUG, but alas, the time didn't permit it.

The rest of the level came from sightseeing Shadowmoon Valley (a couple of quests in there, too) and Blade's Edge and Netherstorm. I feel OP in the areas with the tanking capabilities: I haven't met a single normal mob anymore which would cause any trouble by itself. In fact, a couple of normal lv70's mobs feel still pushovers.

My gear isn't that great, mainly from Hellfire Citadel. So I must take it that the mobs are just weak.

Or is it something else?

Friday, April 3, 2009

Missing trade goods

Levelling a profession without the gold to purchase the required materials is a drag. Then again, the grinding is even more of a drag. If the levels were filled equally, there would be enough lower level gatherers and looters to keep the AH stacked with the materials over the level and profession skill levels.

However, this is not the case, at least not in the first generation servers like Thunderhorn-EU. The level range of the toons is very, very top heavy, and the levelling through 20-60 content is ultra fast, even though the 40-50 levels of death are still revered as such. I've noticed, however, that the current speeding up of levelling has in fact taken that hellish grind stage off, and the level range 40-50 has become 50-58, only to speed up at the entry to Outlands.

The result in the materials available is clearly seen in AH: Mageweave is almost non-existing, Runecloth is pretty scarce. Both being the 40-55 range stuff. I also heard the same from my brother who's toon is Leatherworker: certain leathertypes are missing from AH or are extremely overpriced, mostly due to the fact that they are scarce.

Sadly, this leads to the fact that if a new player comes into the game, s/he will face the burdens of outlevelling the content and at the same time outlevelling the 'natural' ways to get the materials needed for the professions. Double burden.

And it's of no use to start training the professions when the toon is capped, if there is no supply of the materials in the market. Add grind to the grind for the raid buffs, repairs and getting the gear to be able to enter the raids...

Ouch. Not a pretty picture.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Three and one again

Despite of the fact that my wife is working in a strange shift and is away about 12 hours a day, and I have to take care of the household (kids and dogs in first priority), I decided to login WoW yesterday. As it happens, I'm trying to level the professions which have been outlevelled by both the Tank and the Healer, so much so that their performance is gimped even in levelling.

When I logged in, I found out that Förgelös was online, so off we went to Winterspring to a)grind some runecloth and b)to grind some reputation for the Timbermaws. And as I was there with Pupunen, the Healer, to gain some exp to get to the groove and Outlands (she's now 53, so there is some work to do, still).

After some time we decided to go to Eastern Plaguelands: granted, it's a bit over the level range for Pupunen, but we thought that one lv65 Rogue could keep her safe and get the high level quests done. And so it was: easy as summer evening.

Whence came Bishopgeorge online. And I switched to the Tank, with whom -after some deliberation- the Three Stooges entered Stratholme. Where Laiskajaakko last time suffered severely from the Cadaver Worms disease, there was a stroll in the park this time with a proper healer to take care of the darn disease. Before we could enter the instance proper, Solaire came online and we had a nice foursome.

Stratholme, though burned down and desolate place, is in fact a very interesting. Too bad we had the high gear on, and we were just running from mob to another without a real plan or even understanding what the instance was about. I guess we downed some minor bosses, but we didn't even take the time to reach for the main bosses, Baron Rivendare and Balnazzar. As I checked the info from WoWwiki, I noticed that we downed almost all minibosses from the Scarlet Crusade side and a couple from the Undead side.

Not too shabby from a group of tourists.

Well, next time we know what to aim for. This time we only cleared the floor.

What I noticed, however, that doing even the unknown instances above their intended level is in fact very, very boring: tank and spank, whatever the mob might be. The concept of speed levelling through instances seems even more interesting, but only in the special case that you can do the instances at their proper level. And at the current state of the game, you really over level the content way too fast. The thought came to me also when I performed the famous Triage: whence it formerly trained you to multitask for the raiding, it's now an annoyance: there is no training for the future instances nor working in groups.

There doesn't seem to be any balance anymore with the levelling game, instances and raiding game. Levelling game is way too easy and soloable, instances are annoyance except for select few and the raiding game requires skills which the earlier part of the game doesn't provide. The raiding game is also pretty much confined currently gearwise, too, as the people who have been running the current end game are looking for the harder Achievements and even the PUG requirements are getting tighter and tighter. I noticed yesterday that there were some achievement runs for which they asked for the earlier achievements...

The gear gap will become even harder to overcome, when the raiding scene moves on to Ulduar with its phat loot.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Fools errand

Today is not a good day to blog. If you're dead serious, you get taken as Aprils Fool. If you're goofing around, you're just doing whatever everyone else is doing.

So I'm not blogging today.

C out