Tobold's Blog
Friday, February 27, 2015
WoW "final" status

My World of Warcraft subscription runs out this weekend, so I thought I should give a final status. "Final" as in "final for this episode of me playing WoW". It is possible that I will resubscribe at some point in time, but judging on past form that might well take until the next expansion.

Overall I liked Warlords of Draenor. I know some people disagree with me calling the garrison "player housing", but in my opinion this is one of the best player housing systems that I have seen in a MMORPG. I'm not much of a decorator, so not being able to place the furniture where I want isn't of any concern to me; I much prefer gameplay functionality and world integration, and I think WoD did that very well. I don't think perfect player housing is possible, due to conflicting demands, so I consider the garrison to be a very well balanced compromise.

I'm ending the expansion with two characters at level 100, and two at level 96, thus short of my initial goal of three characters at 100. The reason I decided to cancel instead of playing another month and getting there is that ultimately I wasn't all that happy with the warlock I created and paid €50 to boost to level 90. He was a lot better than the priest in terms of power, in fact he might be my most powerful character overall. But I found him somewhat boring to play, as most of the time I was just spamming very slow spells with long casting times. I pull with Soul Fire, cast an instant Corruption, and then most mobs are dead before I even manage to pull off a second Soul Fire. The whole "I turn into a demon and become more powerful" thing is nice in theory, but in practice I only ever used it on boss mobs. Between my demon and the imps that spawn automatically I feel I already have too many pets before I even got to the point where I could hire a bodyguard. I'm not a big fan of pet classes, even if they are powerful.

On the positive side the Alliance warlock gave me the opportunity to play through all the Shadowmoon Valley quests, which I couldn't do on my Horde characters. On the negative side, once I came to Gorgrond I discovered that half of the quests, including the grand finale, were just carbon copies of Horde quests and I didn't experience anything new. That didn't motivate me to keep playing to 100.

What was exceptional about these two months of World of Warcraft was that I only visited one single dungeon (on normal, for a quest for an epic ring). I basically opted out of PvE or PvP group content, being disillusioned about playing with others. Of course if I don't want to group, I'm excluding myself from tons of content, which explains how I can "finish" Warlords of Draenor in two months. I fully recognize that there are a bunch of other possible activities where I could grind this reputation or that currency to advance my character further. But why should I? Why gear up for a content that I have no interest in? So in the end beyond experiencing the story of the expansion through quests I ran out of goals to pursue. Time to put the game aside again.

WoD became extremely casual-player and single-player friendly. The garrison is a clear example of how much Blizzard intended to focus on the solo experience. I liked it, a lot. I guess this was my personal best experience since I started playing the game in 2008.

6.1 added a little more to the social aspect, with people visiting your garrison every day (if you open a game for them) and chatting here and there while doing their business. Something I've rarely experienced pre-6.1

I wish I was a new player. I wish I could go back in 2008 and play the game again. I will miss those times, the first emotions, the feelings, the "oooohhhh!" moments. I tried rerolling but I hate playing the same stuff twice, I've never been able to do so (even in other games). I guess I am (was) one of the few players with just one toon for 7 years.

See you in patch 6.2 maybe?
I don't think the new WoW would suit me. I loved the challenging dungeons back in BC - probably got over half of my experience levelling from 60-70 in dungeons, and then I played a ton of heroics until I joined a raiding guild.
"I don't think the new WoW would suit me. I loved the challenging dungeons back in BC - probably got over half of my experience levelling from 60-70 in dungeons, and then I played a ton of heroics until I joined a raiding guild."

Then it seems you'd like Challenge Mode dungeons and Heroic/Mythic raids?

I mean, it takes the best guilds in the world over 300 attempts to kill some bosses on Mythic difficulty. Plenty of very hard stuff in game -- and that's legitimately hard based on skill.
Really late to the party but sounds like we wound up in roughly the same place on WoD. Liked the expansion, skipped the group stuff, maybe will come back for a month or two when the next one drops. We'll see!
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