Tobold's Blog
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Onyxia is back!

Amidst much cries of "more dots!" and "minus 50 DKP" Onyxia made her return to World of Warcraft this week, Tuesday for the US, yesterday for Europe. So yesterday night I went on an impromptu Onyxia raid with my guild. By either great design or great luck the new Onyxia encounter was tuned in difficulty to exactly the perfect level for the raid group I was in. So we wiped a few times while relearning the encounter, and learning the new parts of it, advanced a bit further with subsequent tries, and finally killed her. Besides 3 Emblems of Triumph I also rolled high on a bag containing two epic gems, and the raid group received three rather nice epics in the old T2 design but with iLevel 232 stats, plus a 22-slot bag. Good times, and not only for nostalgia reasons.

Epic Slant is reflecting on Onyxia and asks "can this be considered new content?". No, I don't think this can be considered as being new content, but that doesn't make it a bad idea. In fact I would like to see more old raid dungeons recycled to the level cap, maybe with the next expansion. Old raid content suffers even more than other old content from nobody visiting any more. Well, people run for fun and for the achievement through Molten Core and the like at level 80, but that isn't the same as playing it at an appropriate level. Even if you wanted to, it would pretty much be impossible to get 40 level 60 players together to do Molten Core, and even if you performed that miracle, you'd find that MC isn't retuned for the level 60 characters of today, which are far more powerful than the level 60 characters of 2005.

I'm not saying that Blizzard shouldn't make new raid dungeons any more, but if recycling old raid dungeons is a lot faster than making a new one from scratch, why not do a mix of both? That would result in an overall higher number of raid dungeons to choose from, which would be nice. And while some people might get bored of doing old content again, many others are likely never to have seen BWL in its old glory, and would be delighted. To me that sounds like a better idea than to let the old content rot in obscurity.
That means I can't solo Onyxia with my DeathKnight anymore!

Was a fun thing to do with my DK dressed in a mix of blues and epics. Took quite a few wipes to get that right.

Oh well, in another twenty levels...
And while your at it, I suggest you scrap the whole idea of telling some ongoing story during the expansions.
Just produce a game and add some arbitray dungeons. Scarp the lore as well - nobody needs it, because we have loot now.

When you feel that the game becomes boring, add an expansion that sells 10 more levels and re(u) balances all classes and update all the dungeons for the new content.

A mean it .. that's the way we are walking right now..
It's not even bad, I mean .. I still play this game .. But I would never start to play a game like this.. never ;)
After running the new Onyxia with my guild in 10 man and a PUG in 25 man, 2 shotting both, I feel that it is a huge success.

The gear is good but not overpowered - it still has some of the inefficient itemization quirks of 5 years ago.

The boss is tuned to require pretty high DPS, healing, and a geared tank - while not a push-over, she can still defeat pugs and provide a nice intense fight.

Having raided for 5 years I definitely feel Blizzard should mix in some retuned classic raids along with the new ones.

If you think about it, Onyxia is actually the second case of this - Naxxramas being the first, and also a smashing success.
I have been saying for a long while that they should revamp the old dungeons. As you mentioned, it's faster to revamp an old dungeon (Onyxia was released on a minor content patch which is a first as far as I can recall) and many of us never got to experience the old 40 man raids. I did have a level 60 warlock before BC came out, but I had no idea what to do at endgame since I was in a guild that just ran Wailing Caverns over and over. While I have gone back and solo'd some of the old dungeons just to see them, I applaud Blizzard for not simply letting lod dungeons languish in obscurity, but making them once again relevant. It's fast, it gives us more options and it reminds us just how big the game we play really is. When all you do is confined to Northrend or Outland, you forget that.
Here here! I too would like to see more of the old content recycled, AS LONG AS IT DOESN'T REDUCE THE AMOUNT OF NEW CONTENT. Releasing Naxx by itself was a bad call. Releasing Onyxia as a supplement to a raid tier was a good call.

We could use more 5-mans right about updating some of them before Cataclysm, Blizz?
I logged in yesterday to run the Brewfest dailies and saw that a fellow paladin guildie was wearing what looked like the old tier 2 judgment helm. Man it brought back memories and made me REALLY excited to run this new Ony fight.

This update to Onyxia is all about nostalgia and celebrating WoWs 5th anniversary. Of course this isn't "new" content, but it is a perfect way to remember the old days.
EQ2 has the ability to allow characters to mentor down to a given level to help people.

I wonder why no one has thought of or tried to apply that to suitable dungeon levels? You enter an instance or raid you're too high for and automatically get reduced to levels suitable for that dungeon or maybe you get prompted to see if you want that to happen.
I would also like to say that I sincerely hope that they revamp all the old raids from the original game. Not only would I just die to have a complete set of updated judgement armor, but I never got to see a lot of this content, as I never made it to cap in the original game.

So, yeah, to someone who ran all these raids a bazillion times back in the day this might seem lackluster, but these content revamps have me extremely excited.
'Is it new content?' I was reminded of an ad campaign one of the networks did some years ago -- when I still watched TV -- promoting some of their summer reruns with 'It's new to you!' The idea being, they were targetting people who hadn't watched the first airing.

For people who started WoW in BC or Wrath... or weren't in large guilds back in the day... well, 'it's new to you!' So yeah, it's 'new' content, for a given value of 'new.'
Blizzard is taking up this torch with the new expansion to some extent by offering "heroic" versions of the original 5 man instances Deadmines and Shadowfang Keep. I still fondly remember tackling a lot of the world content with random groups at the appropriate level. Working through the whole of Blackrock Depths with five mid-fifty level characters felt like just as much of an accomplishment as a lot of raid content.
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