Tobold's Blog
Friday, October 22, 2010
 
Failure is always an option

As this post is likely to be deliberately misinterpreted by a certain brand of troll, let me start with this statement: I am very much in favor of Cataclysm making World of Warcraft harder. I specifically like the changes that make healing more tactical, where the healer has to make intelligent choices not only who to heal, but also which spell to heal with. But I also welcome the return of crowd control, and the necessity of careful selection of your target, instead of mindless AoE damage.

Having said that, in spite of preferring situation B to situation A, I'm a bit worried about how we will get from A to B. While I don't like blanket statements like "WoW is too easy", it is certainly true that the excessive rewards for heroics in Wrath of the Lich King did lead to groups being generally overgeared for the heroics they were running, which in turn led to extremely careless gameplay habits. Not so much for the tanks and healers, but very much so for the damage dealers. Not only have they forgotten all they ever knew about crowd control, but in many cases they barely know about how to intelligently select which target to attack any more. If you can kill everything with AoE spells, that is what you will do. Furthermore the excessive use of addons like Gearscore and damage meters has led players to believe that the best damage dealer is the one on top of the damage meter. That is likely to cause problems in Cataclysm.

In the overgeared situation of WotLK heroics, the normal situation before patch 4.0.1 was that the tank could hold all aggro, whatever the damage dealers did, and the healer could keep everybody topped up to maximum health whatever happened. That situation where failure wasn't an option is about to change. Patch 4.0.1 already made the aggro holding part much harder, and healing will become harder once people level up and stop being insanely overgeared for the content they are running. What is the typical damage dealer going to think when his group just wiped? Will he think "Oh, I shouldn't have used that AoE spell while the tank was still charging!"? Or will he think "Stupid fail tank didn't hold aggro, stupid fail healer didn't keep me alive!"? My guess is the latter.

Damage dealers need to learn that failure not only is always an option in Cataclysm, but also that they now carry a big part of the responsibility for that failure. Be that from crowd control or from targeting, a good dps is not just the highest number on the damage meter any more. Too bad I doubt that anyone will ever program a good performance meter addon which gives out bonus points for crowd control and big penalties whenever a damage dealer pulls aggro.

Unfortunately the most likely outcome for some time is an endless wailing of dps players about how bad the healers and tanks are. And that leads me to fear another problem: An increased tank shortage. Let's not mince words here: Tanks got shafted by patch 4.0.1, and there is nothing to suggest that Cataclysm will improve their situation. My healing priest is dual spec and his damage output as shadow increased from 3.5k dps to 4.5k dps with the patch while wearing his healing gear!!! My protection warrior deals only half that damage in his tanking gear, because replacing defense by dodge didn't change the need for tanks to carry around two sets of gear. And melee damage took a big hit compared to spell damage in general in patch 4.0.1. As a result I would need to gear up my tank twice as long as my healer, and still not get close to the same damage output in my second spec. And as tanking already has become a whole lot more difficult, playing a tank just isn't fun any more: He is worse off now both in group and solo gameplay, and gets insult added to injury. While druids probably will remain popular, due to more races available to them in Cataclysm, and their now much overpowered moonkin damage output, paladins will certainly drop from the top of the popularity table, and warriors risk falling down to the bottom of it, with only Spinks remaining as protection warrior.

I do hope that with time all this will balance out, in part by Blizzard improving the balance between spell damage and melee damage, in part by people getting used to the new realities and learning how to crowd control and watch aggro. But until we get there, I'm afraid we can expect some unfriendly moments in World of Warcraft.
Comments:
In before Gevlon throws a party relating to this idea.
 
You are taking few things out of account. First - vengeance with the cata tank pools is intended to bring tank dps on par with pure dps classes. And second - it will be perfectly possible to tank non raid content in dps gear - why - well mastery becomes from offensive to very potent defensive stat just by changing spec. So instead of avoidance you will have fun things like hit crit and expertise on gear. Threat will again be a non issue.

And cata heroics being aoe fest - they will be. just a patch slower then wrath. So by June 2011 it will be same old same old
 
I disagree that tanks are in any worse shape now than they were previously or that the community will not adapt to the new paradigm of Cataclysm heroics/raids.

I just got done tanking normal 10 Lich King as a Blood DK for some friends. By the first transition on nearly every attempt, I had a 2k threat lead on the next closest DPS and was doing a sustained 8k dps. While this is admittedly inflated by keeping diseases up on the drudge ghouls and periodic Blood Boils, I wasn't able to sustain those number pre-4.01 nor was I able to generate as much threat as quickly, even if I spammed Icy Touch with Empowered Rune Weapon. I observed a similar example as our guild's main protection warrior easily handled off tanking Lich King 10 while putting up 10k+ AoE dps.

You have an awfully cynical view of the player base that seems to reduce to: WoW players are entitled children, skinner boxes that bitch, whine, and hurl racial epithets the moment the rewards are removed. That is an accurate description of some players, but I would wager a small, vocal minority. If you can't deign to play with such people on occasion, avoid them. Play with guild members you enjoy playing and on your own terms.
 
Very worried about Cata so far...

Unlike WOTLK which is devoured almost non stop as soon as I got my hands on it only to redo it all again with alts, I barely lasted 2 hours into CATA (BETA access couple weeks ago) and logged out totally bored.

While I love various ideas in there (healing revamp, return of CC, etc), I'm quite sure they won't avail to anything and we'll be back to total carnage a week or two after release with couple exceptions mainly to prevent healer mobs from doing their job.

In all videos I've seen for dungeons, AE is not dead, it's just AE everything BUT one big bad healer mobs which you easily CC for a bit then one shot before moving on.

Dumb DPS never went away, the system was just made dumber to hide them. Most DPSers play this kind of characters because they cannot/don't want to put concentration in their play. AE was cool for that, just run a bit and push couple buttons while you watch TV. Patches and whatever revamp won't change them, just frustrate them.

As for tanks getting shafted: GOOD!
That will remove most of moronic tanks that have been popping up since dual spec and dungeon finder. I never understood why Blizzard decided to up the tank damage and blur the lines of archetypes more and more.
Tanks tank, DPS dps and healer heals...period? The more specialized you make a class, the more tactical play you can develop I believe.

Finally, forget all about GS and whatever e-peen tool. Sure people use them but nothing is forcing anyone follow the trend. If a DPS blames you or your healer, let him die...a lot, then kick him.
 
I don't see reasons for tank shortage. The mentioned "problem" do not exist in ANY near-decent guild.

It is quite possible that the tanks and healers will completely disappear from LFD (queuing up with full group does not count). So the LFD-using loldps can run out of tanks. I just can't see why should we care about them.
 
I have seen EXACTLY that. I'm a paladin tank and I have had problems with DPS just pummeling everything with no regard as to their own aggro. I've cryied out oh so many times that aggro generation is no longer enough for DPS to go all out but I got ignored so many times more. I've even bloged about it (http://www.seepyou.net/blog/2010/10/20/wow-patch-401/) so my friends the DPS will see it, but some still just go ahead and DPS all they can. It will be interesting to see what is going to come...
 
I pretty much ran into this issue last night on my reasonably fresh 80 Warrior.
Landed in a Stratholme group where the DPS were all massively overgearing me. [including a hunter who seemed to have forgotten he could have helped the aggro issues]
prior to 4.0.1, I had a chance of being able to grab the aggro back.
However, the DK and balance druid [both typically have high threat output, and I usually wait to see which to put Vigilance on] decided they couldn't wait 2 seconds for me to pull a pack.
I remember that a quick TC would often be enough to pull in mobs hit by healing aggro in these usual cases, but I've not found that to properly work yet.

The loss of Armored to the Teeth can hurt DPS [and subsequently threat]. Sure, we have Vengeance to boost DPS, but if you're not getting hit...

All the healer sees is mobs running around apparently unchecked and everyone taking damage, while all I see is the mobs running towards the various impatient DPS that couldn't wait another couple of seconds for me to charge in and get initial aggro; and since they all pick different mobs...

In these cases, I'm not sure how much blame to put on myself, and how much to put on the others
 
Maybe DPS could receive a -90% damage output debuff with a 60 second duration when they pull aggro? That might burn through their haze.

Or they might still blame the tank. Hey, maybe GC could sort a raid warning style message when DPS pulls aggro. Something like "L2P fail noob! Mind your threat!"
 
I welcome the change. It'll only impact the clueless or extremely casual people. You'll actually have an incentive to fill your group with decent players, such increasing my value as a decent dps/tank/healer.

What i expect thou, is the vast majority of wow players will cry for nerf and blizzard will hear them for financial reasons. Should be going the usual route of nearly challenging, almost challenging and nerfed to death in the usual timespan of a few months (6?).
 
Shuffling around year old gameplay basics, thus enforcing change is a brave and good strategy. Execution in Cataclysm though looks subpar. I'm not playing the beta - but i'm reading the writings on the wall. I really really want to question the change in the pacing of combat and in particular the changes to their healing model. Yes healing in Lich King reached a point of no return, but not having to handle a ressource, being a more pro-active healer was and still is fun to me. Healing 4.0 looks to be more slow, more ressource handling and more praying for co-players not to fuck up. Two of those things just aren't fun in my playbook. Sure ressource handling in theory is fun, but did you ever played it executed well? I did not. Why is that DPS doesn't have to manage ressources on the same level? Cause it isn't fun. That's why.

I don't see tank shortage happen though. Playing a tank will put you in groups and raid instantly, with a focus on 10mans creating a much higher demand for tanks in general. Will 4.0 filter out the bad tank players? Maybe and good so, but it in the long run, people will play tanks, just for their increased demand and just to get into groups instantly.
I want to mention a small detail regarding healing in 4.0 and some minor talents across the healing specs. I'm convinced Blizzard took a very tiny step into the future of the healing role: sidetrack healing to a DPS role. Think about healing being a side effect of or syngergizing with your DPS. To me that's the way to go with the role. Same could be done with tanking and it looks like Guild Wars 2 is doing a similar thing. Make everyone fulfill tank/healer role, within their DPS role if they want or need to. There's limitation in the details (how to handle "mixed" rotations) but nothing Blizzard couldn't solve.
 
At the risk of being accused of nostalgia, do you all recall the way things were when top guilds were running MC and BWL? In those days, every raid was a contest between the tanks, who were trying to pump out as much threat as possible, and the DPS who were trying to pump out as much damage as possible. In the very best guilds, there was a very fine balance between the two groups where the DPS would just ride the edge of pulling aggro.

For me, even though I played a healer, I liked it that way. I found the contest was motivating - especially for the tanks I knew then. They took a lot of pride in never letting aggro go and allowing the DPS to go nuts. In all honesty, those tanks were some of the best WoW players I ever had the pleasure of playing with. So, at least in this regard, I think the change is for the better.
 
I agree very much with this post. I'd just like to add a few thoughts:

During Vanilla you generally felt as if you would be in that dungeon as a group and would somehow need to make it through together. Dps meters were frowned upon, since the real prove of skill was to make it though the dungeon without wipe.

Today, DDs only look at the dps meter, because it is officially supported as a big part of your 'skill' and completing the dungeon is expected. Blizzard made being a good DD relatively hard with last patch. Now, DDs are constantly challenged to use every random proc and not mess their rotation up (e.g. by waiting for the tank).

In Vanilla the actual task to do damage was often trivial. Frost mages, for example just spammed frostbolt. Fire mages spammed fireball and a few AoE abilities when they felt like it. Due to this simplicity of dealing damage, DDs looked out for other challenges and generally had an easier time looking at their surroundings.

Actually, believe it or not, raiding Molten Core as frost mage was not necessarily boring (for the first 20 times..), even though you only spammed frostbolt. You were emotionally invested in the success of the raid and considered it a privilege to raid at all.

Being a good DDs today is not trivial anymore and thus players feel like they have to invest everything to deal top damage. This, however, is in direct contrast to the idea that DDs should hold back and go through the dungeon as a team with the healer and the tank.

Due to the way WotLK has evoled, DDs today are constantly confused what they are supposed to do: Deal top dps (hard enough) or make the life easy for the tank?

Concluding,
the new mechanics for DDs are much more challenging than the old ones. Combined with the dungeon finder anonymity and external grinding incentives (points), this makes the planned system unappropiate for the kind of dungeon, Blizzard tries to implement in Cataclysm.

It's tricky psychology, but essential. My guess is that Blizzard will have to make keeping aggro easyier again. Also, the fast gear progression (bit slower than in WotLK, but still much faster than in TBC/Vanilla) for every(!!) player will soon make heroics braindead again. Since players exspect to complete any dungeon, not matter the group, group-thinking will not prevail.
 
Tobold, when you wrote this post, did you realize that melee dps have indeed been buffed in a hotfix to keep up with casters? In fact, the only reason they were low when the patch hit is because of the removal of armor penetration as a stat on gear.

Right now, most melee characters are very inappropriately geared as armor pen converted to crit or haste. Blizzard buffed the damage output of many melee abilities to make up for this, and plans (I think) to reverse these specific buffs when stats get corrected at 85.

I look forward to (hopefully) a return to what I fondly remember about TBC dungeons; proper kill orders, crowd control, and groups working together. In TBC it wasn't until the days of T6 being common that AoE dungeon runs became standard. We did still pay attention to the damage meters, though. As today, only the worst players - the ones with something to hide - refused to care.

Cataclysm's LFD may see a bit of a crash landing, but I have faith that people will eventually get the picture and learn to work together again. At least, I hope Blizzard sticks to their guns enough to see that happen.

Off-topic (and probably going to get called a troll, please don't waste a response on this random thought:) there are a lot of whiny tanks out there...
 
@AndruX: I think we're whiny because we bear a lot of the flak for wipes, when it's often out of our control due to DPS not adapting to the threat changes.
I think I'm going to try a little speech macro at the start of my next few, to remind them that I need a headstart
 
To the gnashing of teeth of the DPS: I hate to be callous, but the issue, as a whole, puts me in a callous mood. As someone who loves his Prot Warrior, Blood DK, and Feral Druid...I couldn't care less about what damage dealers think. If they want to complain, they can have fun doing so. They sure aren't going to be rolling healers or tanks to compensate.

Due to the capitalistic nature of dungeon finder, as a Tank I have more power. I get instant queues and damage dealers have much longer ones because there is a large demand for my skills and glut of supply of their skills. If they are unhappy with how I, as the tank, tell them to act...well, someone is going to end up unhappy and it isn't me. If it is a single person, they can get the boot. If others don't agree to them getting the boot I can leave myself and get a new instance any time.

It also helps that I am playing with a healer friend and we have been playing together since classic. We know what we can and can't do, we know what DD can and can't do, and as unfair as it might be we are the totalitarian dictators of groups we get into. Thank you capitalism.

Now that I have gotten the gevlon out of my system...as to the second point, are you sure warriors are unpopular? I haven't been reading around, but I've loved my prot warrior after this patch. Mind you, I am maybe a little sad that not much is changed while lots of other classes have new things to try out, but ultimately I can try new things on other characters and enjoy the same old on that warrior. I've had a small amount of threat issues, but nothing that made me feel helpless. I guess I just feel that I am missing how I was shafted. Is it just in the beta at 85?
 
People seem to forget that WoW is a group based game where the role synergies and co-operation. Too many people are too concerned about their DPS output to fulfil their other roles in a group eg crowd control and dispelling/decursing.

I play a priest and therefore cannot decurse or remove poisons. I have asked mages/boomkins to decurse me/the tank and was told that is the healers job not DPS. Even worse I left a disease on a particularly dumb shadow priest who was pulling aggro continuously. He got really angry complained that I should have cured his disease and became abusive when I suggested that as he has the ability to cleanse himself if it was really that bad he could have removed it himself.

I personally welcome the changes that Cata is bringing and only regret is that Blizzard haven't made the DPS classes responsible for decursing/cleansing rather than putting that burden on the healers even more.

With regards to tanks, I think the shoift towards more 10 man raids will bring more tanks out as each raid group will need a minimum of 2 tanks and probably no more than 3 for a 25 man group.
 
There will be enough tanks... in guilds and they will do guild runs only instead of logging into the "DeppenFinder" (German for GimpFinder).

I play a pure DD class as main and have two tank twinks. Both my warrior and paladin were leveled as tank and tanked a lot of random 5man, actually both of them are guildless because I play them just for fun. Putting them into the guild would have meant off-tank duty but I only want to raid with my main.

I stopped playing these tanks quite in the summer because of all the harebrained DD in the DeppenFinder. It just wasn't fun anymore. Looking forward to tanking again in Cataclysm, more CC ftw ;-).

But... with all the Cataclysm guild achievements I think I will finally put one of the tanks into the guild to tank 5mans.

Perhaps random DD will get better in Cata, but I have doubts. We'll see.
 
It's a pity that Blizzard insist on having a tank in every 5-man in Dungeon Finder. The best fun I've had in dungeons is when the tank DCs or AFKs or quits. Then the DDs can actually have some fun!

The fun is the fun of the roller-coaster. You take risk again. Adrenaline flows. Perhaps now that tanks have poorer aggro, we'll get this fun back. Being a DD in the AoE-fest we had before this patch was pure boredom.

I'll let you into a little secret, tanks. Some damage dealers try to steal aggro from the tanks just to generate a little bit of excitement.
 
My problem with tanking, and what I've noticed since patch 4.01, is that tanks seem to do higher damage than the dps. I don't know how it is in heroics because I'm not running heroics anymore but while leveling my mage, tanks consistently out-dps any other dps in the group. Regardless of class: warrior, paladin, druid, they're all the same.

I don't like this. The tank's job should be to generate sufficient threat, to hold aggro and to hold those mobs in place for the dps to do their jobs. But now, the dps are there just to clean up what's left after the tank's initial attack. I mean, a druid/warrior charges an elite mob and its health drops almost to half from that initial attack?

Tanks out-dps-ing the dps is called having your cake and eating it too.

At any rate, I'm gonna try to level both a druid and a warrior tank from scratch in Cata. Just to see what all the fuss is about.
 
@Darth Solo: That was the case even before 4.0.1.
It was very rare for my warrior to be out-DPS'd in normal dungeons while levelling. The only DPS that came close were those in full BoA. [Or something with real skill]

I don't know if it's an actual better DSP issue, the DPS hasn't figured out an optimal rotation [since not many sites explain pre-endgame rotations] or just that there's more slacking on the part of the DPS because they don't have to care, as long as there's no wipes.
Part of it may be that capable tanks are typically hitting their abilities as they become available and not just wanding or auto-hitting, so there's less lost DPS through downtime
 
You worry too much, IMO. DPS will learn to use their abilities once again to a greater or lesser extent And good tanks and healers will have their choice of the better DPS.
 
Tobold, I'm a warrior tank and I LOVE the changes to aggro. I wish they would make them more extreme and really nerf my aoe tanking even more. Actually having to work for aggro control is deeply refreshing and fun. So I don't feel shafted one bit.

Now, I might just start assembling groups of guildies or otherwise known quantities for dungeons if your fears of loose cannon dps are accurate, but hell, that's pretty much how people rolled in old pugs. Which is why people avoided them as much as possible. So you might be right; you'll see a shortage of tanks, but not because people quit as much as they stopped being so promiscuous. Which could enhance the social aspect of the game.
 
Druids seem to have gotten the best deal out of this.

Our raid's newish cat had his dps shoot from below the tanks to 7-8k. Our resto druid is doing 2k dps most fights while healing.

As far as tanking goes, bears are *beasts*. AoE threat took a huge hit, but single-target threat went through the ceiling, as did dps and damage reduction due to vengeance's effect on the savage defense's shields.

On the balance side, they've done a funny thing and made mana reduction buffs/talents additive instead of multiplicative, so the moonfire buff stacks with the 9% cost reduction talent to give 6 mana moonfires.

I fear the impending nerf bat.
 
Also I don't think many people are motivated by que times. Granted, I only play healers and tanks but that's because I find DPS to be boring. But I see a LOT of hybrid classes; pallys, druids, priests, warriors, most of whom are still playing dps in spite of the que penalty for being dps. Some people just don't want to heal or tank, period. Even if it is easy and would speed up their leveling.
 
I am unfashionable to enough to not like the new healing changes. A lot. Partly because I am a major healbot user. So fast/inefficient, spammablely efficient, instant and shield are fine with me. When I have to try to remember whether the refresh for silly-mechanic-#7 heal is shift-alt-click or control-alt-rightclick that I think it is just contrived;

You can make a very interesting game play with 2-4 heals, mana issues, and triage. You can make something far less interesting with Ulduar twitch or more-for-the-sake of more spells.

If seemingly the only mechanic Blizzard has is move out of the fire, I rather do that with a DPS where the downside is not keeping a dot/debuff refreshed rather than deaths. Although the vast repertoire of hots and instant heals of a 3.0 pally in a 5 man PUG could have colored my thinking.

tl;dr: I think healers will also be a bit in short supply.

I assume that is one of the fake Gevlons since the less fake one isn't into guild administration and attendance?
 
I don't think it will be that bad. Groups are already adapting to the changes.

The other night, I saw a rogue booted from a heroic PoS group for constantly pulling aggro. He was #2 on the damage meters, but was choosing targets randomly and not using any of his tools. The reason given for the boot was "dumbass clearly"

/assisting the tank and using aggro dump skills really isn't that hard. I still see the occasional moron, but overall players are adjusting well. I'm interested in what will happen when CC is required.
 
Expanding on @Nils: what "should" DD do?

Say a DD who opens up too soon or doesn't switch to the adds increases the chance of a group wipe by say 15% for minor benefit. And everyone is assuming that they should not do it. But it will increase them on the damage meter. And when its time to select raid or heroic (guild runs more important in Cata) spot, being #2 instead of #3 DD could have an effect on you progression. Which compounds, more invites -> more gear/experience -> more performance -> more invites ...

So just because something is bad for the group, doesn't mean it is not in the DD's best interest. It's like the executives, who set the commion plan up, are surprised/annoyed when salemen sell what pays the most commission, not what is best for the company.

If you reward hyperaggressive (or any) behavior, you will get more of it.

I think the person who posts the damage meter at the end of the last fight can be at least as responsible for the agro pull in the next fight as the DD who did it.

-------

I wonder if Blizzard did this deliberately: tone down tank threat and especially quick initial threat (at least to hear pally tell it) and then design some DPS cylces that want to open up. The arcane mage wants to do their mana burn phase ASAP so they can do an extra burn phase. So the mage would prefer to get started on pumping out those (50-60k in nonheroic gear) crits ASAP and the tanks have their new threat mechanics? /tinfoilhat off
 
Am I the only one here who thinks that most everyone is forgetting that the LFD tool might need to be changed/updated in order to better match players due to the recent changes?

Wait, that's silly..right? of course it is..... >:)

If the upcoming content requires aggro management, crowd control, healing/mana considerations ect...then one has to wonder just what exactly Blizzard is asking its playerbase to do in light of these changes.

Since 4.0 hit I have only been running the ICC heroic versions of the 5-mans, and with my shadowpriest I find that if I do not "assist" the tank and attack his focused target, I can pull aggro quite easily. But hey, guess what? It didnt take me long to realize this and decide to always assist the tank regardless of where I stood on the dps meters.

The goal, as it should have stayed all along, should be the successful completion of the instance while earning whatever reward there is to be had - as a team....-together-.

Why have 5-man group instances with no required coordination or cooperation between the 5 people involved? It just doesnt make sense that those wouldnt be basic requirements in a dungeon.
 
When I first started playing in Vanilla, I learned quickly as a mage that I was supposed to be able to CC targets, and decurse. I was decursing people and CC'ing targets in my 20s in RFK and BFD. And that was without being told that I had to.

TBC was more of the same. Being a good mage meant being aware of what mobs were doing what. Being able to sheep a mob before it ran across and aggro'd another group got you compliments. I also learned that standing near healers was a good thing, as doing a frost nova to snare a mob chasing a healer could be the difference between wiping or moving onto the next pack of trash. Back then, playing a DPS role was more than your DPS numbers. Off-tanking a mob and kiting actually meant something. Only Arena really gave a DPS player a chance to shine in WoTLK. Otherwise, just copy the default talent spec, and follow the rotation until it was time to collect your reward.

In Wrath, it really did become an AoE fest. For someone like me, it was pretty dull running instances, but at least it was quick. Since I had a lot of level 80 alts, I guess I couldn't complain. But then again, I knew how to play all my classes and understand my spells and abilities.

I don't play WoW anymore, but I would love to witness 4.0/Cataclysm with all of the WoTLK players who have no idea of how to play their class because the only thing that was expected of them was aoe'ing or efficient dps rotation.

Although at first you're going to see dps who have no idea of wtf they are doing, sooner or later they are going to quit the game, learn, or be blacklisted...so I wouldn't worry about it too much. Also, tanks are finally going to start getting some respect again. Rather than the DPS and healer yelling at the tank for "losing" a mob, you're going to get the whole group yelling at the idiot DPS who didn't pay attention to his aggro.

Welcome back, Omen. It's been awhile.
 
So basically nooby dps players will remain just that.

The solution is obvious. Only play with people you know.
 
this happens with every new expansion. Regular dungeons are pretty easy, heroic dungeons are decently difficult, and once you're a few tiers in the old stuff becomes trivial, and Tobold will write a blog post or two complaining that old content isn't interesting anymore. The point is to experience content when it's fresh not 6 months later, that is where the thrill and enjoyment lies.
 
Loving the changes to my prot warrior, mmmm hmmmm mmm good
 
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