Tobold's Blog
Wednesday, August 28, 2019
WoW Classic and watchability

One of the few streamers I watch on Twitch is Quickybaby. He is an excellent World of Tanks player, and I found that watching a live stream (or recorded video of that live stream) of a World of Tanks game in which sometimes things just go wrong teaches me more than watching an edited video of that one perfect game on YouTube. But sometimes QB plays other games, and recently he has started playing WoW Classic. Let's say that it isn't going well.

But apart from server disconnects and waiting queues perfectly replicating the World of Warcraft classic experience of 2004, I noticed something when watching that stream on Twitch: Not every game is equally watchable. Even if on a relative scale WoW Classic is more "hardcore" than modern WoW, on an absolute scale the leveling up gameplay of World of Warcraft through "kill 10 boars" quests is utterly trivial. When I watch QB in World of Tanks I learn something, like which positions he takes in what type of tank on which map. Watching him play World of Warcraft leveling up a low-level Tauren warrior in Mulgore teaches me absolutely nothing. I can already do that in my sleep. There isn't much visible difference in performance of that task between a great WoW player and an average WoW player.

The second problem is that if I watch QB doing some quest, I know in advance how it will go and what the outcome is going to be. There is no "will he win?" excitement of an uncertain outcome. The only entertaining part of the stream is the display of emotions when he gets disconnected and finds himself in a 3-hour queue. World of Warcraft is a scripted game, much of which is running on rails. Once you know what rail somebody has chosen, you can accurately predict what will happen next. If you played the same quest yourself, the experience would be nearly identical. I can assure you than in World of Tanks my experience with the same tank on the same map is far from identical from the experience QB has on his stream. It isn't even the same experience if I myself happen to play the same map with the same tank twice.

In short, watching a Twitch stream of WoW Classic is about as exciting as watching a stream of somebody washing the dishes. Maybe a raid would be more interesting to watch, but the leveling experience sure isn't.

I think Classic is going to be better for smaller streamers that like to chat and interact with their audience. In a more involved game that means that they constantly have to take breaks from playing, but I figure that you'd be able to keep up with chat pretty well while grinding boars...
Maybe it's ASMR.
Or maybe it's how the streamer is lacking in his portrayal of the social aspects of finding groups, meeting new people, and completing quests/content. QB might be good with his streams of WoT, but after watching some of his WoW Classic content, I would advise he stick to WoT, because his streaming style isn't suited for a re-visit of Vanilla. I agree. Watching his streams of WoW Classic is like watching someone wash dishes. But I don't fault WoW Classic for that. It's up to the streamer to make his/her content worth watching.
Yeah you better be real goddamn charismatic to make leveling worth watching because it it's super boring to play it much less watch it. Also the main challenge in leveling was knowing what to do without reading the quest text (because WOW is super boring). What was that website everyone used? Alakhazam?

I'll be real interested in where WoW Classic is in 6 months. I'm guessing it'll be where most MMOs are after six months--- more or less dead once the excitement and nostalgia wears off.
Forbes has reported that Activision stock is up over 3% since Classic was released. Tech Radar reported that over 2 million people have created characters on servers. A majority of gaming websites are reporting that it's an impressive showing.

Even with the grind of leveling and all the imperfections that came with Vanilla, people are telling Blizzard to "Just shut up and take our money" in regards to Classic.

Who knows where Classic will be in 6 months, but even if it loses 50% of it's players over those 6 months, Blizzard will still be making plenty of money from a subscription revenue model that was supposed to have died out a long time ago.

And to keep this post on topic: There are quite a few streamers out there who are having great success with Classic WoW. New memes are already being established and they know how to present Classic content in ways that have attracted over 1 million twitch viewers in the recent week. Some streamers are merely jumping on the popularity bandwagon of Classic in order to make a buck, but the hidden gems will be like cream and rise to the top because they are interesting to watch.
Yeah guff, that's cool. Per the standard MMO drop-off that will be down 50% in three months and trend down from there. Everybody is always over the moon with excitement in the first days. Then in a month they start complaining. Probably not a bad profit from dusting off some old server backup and writing some compatibility code but this time next year there will be a small rump of hardcore people. Which is fine. But it is what it is.
I think you're comparing apples to oranges. Watching a "leveling session" of WoW (as well as almost any other MMO, I bet) doesn't make any sense in my opinion: everyone is doing exactly the same stuff (kill 10 boars, deliver a letter, collect 10 berries, ...).

If you want to learn new tricks, feel the adrenaline rush, have some excitement and get into the action then watch a good PvP arena/whatever stream. You will now see skilled players versus average/beginner players and you will have a nice opportunity to learn new techniques and be better at your class.

That's what I did back when I used to play some PvP. I've been a full-PvE player with a single toon (hunter=) and my PvP skills where an absolute crap. By watching some streams, learning how to rotate/use skills and spells, master some other movement/positioning tricks I eventually became a lot better and started to win here and there.
Post a Comment

<< Home
Newer›  ‹Older

  Powered by Blogger   Free Page Rank Tool