Hey Tobold, I'm a WoW addict who has recently starting playing my first free-to-play MMO, Lord of Ultima.
I'm curious if you have checked it out and what you think of it, particularly the micro-transaction side of things.
I'm well and truly hooked on the game, and to me the micro-transactions seem reasonable (judging against what I pay a month on a WoW subscription). So reasonable that I'll be buying some diamonds in the very near future :)
There has been a lot of discussion this week about Guild Wars 2. ArenaNet released their manifesto on game design for GW2, which is what got everyone talking.
I was wondering if you ever played the original Guild Wars - or expansions - and what your take was on the game.
You only have to buy a boxed copy and then there is no subscription fee ever, which I think is really cool. It is actually only 20 bucks on steam for GW plus expansions this week. Maybe you should check it out if you haven't.
You commented on the 10/25 changes to WoW raiding. I may be biased in that the changes are ones I generally like, but it seems to me that the real outcry is a typical reaction to change vs. anything intrinsic.
I'm curious what you think of the following thought experiment:
Assume WoW raiding in Wrath had been set up where 10-mans were tuned harder than 25's. Also, assume that given the difference in diffuculty meant that 10-mans dropped higher ilvl gear. (put another way, 10's were the "hardcore" raids and 25's were useful to "gear up".)
In this environment, Blizzard makes the announcement that 10's and 25's will now drop the same items.
I can't see any reason we wouldn't be seeing the same reactions we are now - just reversed. (e.g. 10-man raiders complaining about the death of hardcore raiding, 10-man raiders talking about how 25-man raiders don't "deserve" the same gear they get, etc.)
Mainly, it just seems that change in general is scary and it's rarely as bad as people think. As an example, I wonder what percentage of people really wish that WoW would go back to 40's?
As an aside, do you (or anyone else), know of a game where the smaller group encounter gives superior rewards?
Have you ever made a blog post about grouping in MMO's? I'd be very interested to hear what you think about it. Especially since the way MMO's handle their grouping and soloing has changed considerably in the recent years.