I haven't been keeping up with the forums recently, but it has been quite clear to me that there is a growing sentiment that WoW is less fun than it used to be. As someone who has played WoW for over eight years, this is something I have also felt as of late. I want to be very clear that I really like World of Warcraft. I have had someone of my fondest experiences and met some of my closest friends on this game. That being said, I am very concerned for the future of WoW. I certainly do not want to see the game I've loved for eight years die in a single expansion. The aim of this post is to try and illuminate what I think are the core problems of World of Warcraft's current design paradigm. By no means are any of these problems original ideas. I'm sure there are plenty of posts that have shared my exact feelings. My hope is that others may share some of these feelings and create conversations with both the developers and the community itself.
I. The lack of 'world' in World of Warcraft
Garrisons were originally an interesting novel addition to the WoW experience. They served the purpose of delivering an individual single player experience. While the intention of adding Garrisons might have been to allow for a more personal solo gameplay, I think the psychological effects of Garrisons have been quite damaging on the community. For one, they removed the need for many laborious activities to be done across Azeroth. Everything from gold farming to transmorgification can be done within the Garrison. While this may seem very convenient, it is also incredibly isolating. It is possible to be entirely self sustainable while never needing to leave your Garrison. A friend of mine has even leveled a character 90-100 by simply completing Garrison missions every day.
Smaller server sub-communities are often created in zones with lots of interaction. Durotar and Elwynn Forest are places where people would meet up with each other. They could duel, chit-chat, banter, gossip, etc. While these zones still exist, it is much more common to see many people on your friends list just sitting in their Garrison. It is the equivalent of locking yourself in your room while there is a wonderful party going on in your house. Stormshield and Warspear don't really feel like main cities. Instead there are just a waypoint between you and your Garrison.
II. Trivialized Rewards
I think this problem has its roots with the introduction of Justice Point gear during the Zul'Aman patch in BC. Rewards are given to players for completing the most trivial of tasks. Queue a BG? Get a reward. Complete a dungeon? Get a reward. Complete a garrison mission? Get a reward. Items and achievements are given for almost everything you do in WoW. These trivial tasks also trivialize the reward you receive. I recently graduated from university. Even though my diploma is a fancy piece of paper, it symbolizes four years of work. Imagine if all it took to receive a college diploma was to complete a ten question survey. Surely it would devalue the worth of the diploma itself. While it does make gearing characters a much faster process, spamming players with rewards is also something that I see as damaging. Giving players meaningful challenges is something that motivates them to play.
The trivializing of rewards is something that has also effected PvP. The prestige of PvP titles has been lost since the removal of Battlegroups. Rank one titles had more meaning when they were only given to a single team (barring the Season 8 fiasco and other ties throughout the arena seasons). Rank one titles seem to be passed out like hotcakes. Once again, this devalues the worth of the achievement and trivializes the effort involved in obtaining it.
III. Scripted PvP
I really appreciate the effort of Blizzard in barring bots from the game. That being said, I think these efforts were made too late and there is definitely more work to be done. Nonetheless, even if there is not a single bot in WoW, PvP seems to be rather scripted. What I mean by this is that every class and composition has its own script that determines the most optimal plays in a particular matchup. The better each player is at performing their script determines the outcome of the matchup. Mages are a class that I think characterize scripted gameplay. Every 30 seconds, Mages will use Blazing Speed, Blink, Deepfreeze, and Polymorph/Ring of Frost. It's a rinse and repeat algorithm.
The scripted feeling of PvP distorts the depth that each class is capable of achieving. Each class and composition is streamlined into playing a certain way. If you do not play by the script, you will fail. If you play by the script, you will succeed.
IV. Cooldowns being too strong or too weak
One of the biggest changes to class design since Vanilla was the increasing number of cooldowns with every expansion. While I do think cooldowns are interesting, there is an incredible imbalance of the strength of different cooldowns and their interactions with other abilities. Simply put, some cooldowns are disproportionately strong compared to others. One example of crazy powerful cooldown/ability interaction that is Bestial Wrath, Focus Fire, A Murder of Crows, and Barrage. These four abilities (all of which are cooldowns) dramatically increase the damage done by the BM hunter. The only class that can completely counter this combination of abilities is Rogue (they can Vanish to remove crows and Stun/Gouge/Blind to interrupt Barrage). Some offensive and defensive cooldowns are incredibly powerful, so much so that matchups revolve around the usage of these cooldowns and how well the other team answers with their own cooldowns. It's another form of the script. The most optimal reply to cooldown usage is often more cooldown usage. This cooldown matching doesn't really seem to add much to the depth of matchups. To me, games are infinitely more exciting when they are not determined by a single ability, but instead the consistent good use of an entire skill set.
V. Passive abilities
Controlling your character involves conscious use of movement keys and abilities. Casting a Chaos Bolt, running around with Sprint, and shifting into Bear Form all involve a physical interaction with you and your peripherals. Moving around and casting spells gives you a sense of robust autonomy and allows you to connect with your character. Another change in class design over the years has been the introduction of many passive abilities and perks. While these may benefit each individual class and spec, they really seem to distort this feeling of "I did that" when it comes to controlling your character. In PvP, one of the most complained about passive abilities is Saved by the Light. This ability, like other passives, does not require the user to perform anything (sure you can make the argument that it requires Beacon of Light on the target but that is beside the point). This trivializes the value of the ability itself. If a matchup is determined by a passive Seal of the Light proc, it is psychologically damaging to both the winning and losing team. The Paladin feels like they haven't really done anything-- their win cannot be attributed to the conscious and careful use of a spell. The team that loses is frustrated, knowing that the enemy team has won the matchup because the game had registered a target at x% HP and prevented the death of that target.
Much of the current design paradigm in WoW has had psychological damage on players, dampening their motivation to play the game. Overall the game feels less immersive, provides too many rewards, reinforces homogenized gameplay strategies, and revolves too much around powerful cooldowns and passive abilities. The game seems to be losing much of its spirit. Having a fun time in WoW involves joining a community, being creative with your spells, and having a sense of achievement.
Small fix Dreoras - WoW's not losing subs because old people are leaving. Life doesn't work that way, otherwise a lot of games would be dead already. WoW's losing subs because Blizzard genuinely doesn't give a fuck.
What you said is like "ow, human race is dying because that dude died" - nah, someone else will replace him. The same way a player who quit will be replaced by a new player, providing the game is actually good.
Before they added all sorts of content to the game. Now they release a new season and a new raid tier and that's it. Old Blizzard would be all like "oh our devs were bored and made a fun little minigame, we're going to release it to public too". New Blizz is all like "oh man, cba fixing this human head clipping issue, and they want me to add a feature? LMAO!"
unfortunately that would result in certain classes/specs being better at doing specific things then other classes/specs
and that would result in the forums being flooded with people complaining that their class cannot tank heal dps kite cc as well as every other class
which leads to the game we have now
I know its so terrible right? Class Diversity!? Classes having a Niche?? having to rely on teammates to achieve a common goal rather then yoloing in there and facerolling?? What the hell kinda game would that be...
joking aside i wish classes would go back to having actual strengths and feeling different. On the topic of warrior self heals, i think Enrage regen is fine, the only thing that needs to be changed is Shield barrier stacking its absorbs with itself rather then overwriting the first absorb. being able to dump 120 rage (with glyph) into a 45-50k absorb would actually feel like a good trade off for trading offensive for defense.
The amount of mindless hate on that thread it's outstanding. And I don't know if people have terrible memory or just remember what fits their arguments.
Saying "it's better than vanilla/tbc" may be right. But do people realize how every other class has changed too?
10s interrupt and 10s reflect vs 15s and 25s current.
Charge out of combat (so usable after every cc pretty much) and intercept on 15s cd, both working as interrupts.
People complaining about berseker rage? 6s every 30s. It was 10s every 30s, and correct me if im wrong, but with old recklessness and deathwish you could be fear immune for like 1 minute straight.
25% extra hp than everyone else and strong passive healing (second wind and blood craze)
Base range buffed to 40y for everyone. Charge went from 5y shorter than casters range to 15y.
Spell pushback capped at 2 delays, everyone has the 70% reduction now.
A shitload of instant cast added.
A shitload of sprints and freedoms added.
A shitload of instant cast cc added.
Multiple schools spells added, so you can cast while interrupted of your main school.
Hunters kit coupled with removal of dead zone.
For sure there are plenty more things, but just of the top of my head.
I'm not complaining. My point it's you need to look at the whole picture (or at least a a wider one)
I think warrior uptime it's fine. We have too little on things like hunters and rdruids (that need to be nerfed) and too much on priest (that need to be buffed). Things like BoS and emancipate are a monstrosity.
20% execute needs a nerf (while SD execute needs a buff). 20% execute should be tunned to be a middle ground between current damage and fury's damage.
The only change I would consider to warrior it's reflect cd reduced to 15s, or just added to anger management.
And mas spell reflect changed to a button that makes you a grounding totem (redirects first spell to you) in a 30-45s cd. If you don't have normal reflect up you would just eat the spell, not reflect it. It would make MSR less powerful as you would have to time it with normal reflect to have current functionality, but also make the warrior be able to choose to use reflect as a self defense.
Oh, and make enrage undispeleable. Fuck hunters. And rogues. And the 2 druids that even know they have soothe.
Bladetwister, on 10 February 2015 - 03:58 PM, said:
"Are warriors fine right now?" - are you fucking kidding me ? The class has insane damage ever since the dawn of the time. Zero respect for shitfaces who play Warriors tbh, I'd rather have kids who play RMD dominate this game until it dies, rather than have warriors win games at all.
"hehe 20% im so fucking good"
Angrypiexx, on 09 February 2015 - 04:41 PM, said:
Warrior damage is out of this world. Bladstorm making them unstoppable every minute is just plain retarded: nobody uses it for doing dmg, it's mostly to be unstopped and/or dodging incoming cc. Fuckin ridicolous mobility and plain dumb ranged phisical stun every 30secs you cant do fuck all about. NERF PLS
Elorxo, on 09 February 2015 - 06:50 PM, said:
mobility cut, still insanely hard to peel off due to reflects, 500 leaps and charges and an extra root breaker if ur gnome
just because combat rogues are more retarded doesn't mean warrior mobility/unpeelableness (dat english) is fine
can deal with the execute shit even though its really fucking annoying in wls as long as warriors are peelable
HeyimJack, on 09 February 2015 - 07:35 PM, said:
Warriors have sick mobility and part of their mobility comes from fucking others mobility with hamdstring
Also TSG is dumb
user_543622, on 09 February 2015 - 07:56 PM, said:
That. Also, why is warrior fear still on 1min 30 sec CD? Better yet, why are they given the ability to be immune to fear vs priests?
Naraga, on 09 February 2015 - 08:03 PM, said:
Charge shouldn't be usable in combat.
Warriors fixed instantly.
I mean apart from the posting pattern, I am really curious as to why keep mentioning mobility. I haven't played in 2 months or so, but correct me if I am wrong in this 2 months period warriors didn't get any mobility buffs right? So all that mob is referring to a shitty charge that roots for 1.5 and a 45 second leap? That's less mobility than WotLK just so you know.