Getting right to the point. I have a few concerns about some of the common, and not so common, responses that I've been seeing. Though, this isn't the first time that I held similar thoughts in mind. This feeling has been ever present since I became more accustomed with the game. My concern is - Homogenisation.
In simpler English, this means to "make the same as" and/or "make uniform". In relation to this post, I am speaking of the the Homogenisation of classes.
When I first arrived at the character creation screen, of the game we have grown to love, or hate, a feeling of choice was given straight off the bat. Yes, I was one to sit there for a good time and really consider my options. Reading through each of the class descriptions, taking in the initial look of your 'character to be' and generally asking, "What can I see myself playing".
It was this, the whole feeling of choice, after passing the character creation screen, which drew me so easily to the game. Being able to pick and choose the way you would like to play.
How would you like to kill your enemies? Decapitate them with the brutality of a Rogue. Overpower them with the holy might of a Paladin. Pin them back from afar, accompanied by a savage beast of your liking, as the eagle eyed Hunter. How would you like to play as a team? Be the one which shields your comrades with the power of light, or the one who wants to excel at keeping a constant 'tick' going, while bringing the benefits that nature can provide. What about protecting your group with the hardened force of the sword and board, or maybe you'd prefer to exploit the death and decaying powers behind your two handed axe.
Now, you may say, I have been speaking, especially for the last section above, in the past tense. I am not saying that the game has come away from this concept which attracted myself, and so many more, to begin with. However, over time, I have noticed changes which depict an impression that says so.
The intentions of such changes are sometimes blatantly obvious, and sometimes not so. However, they may occur for a number of reasons. Whether for PVP balance of PVE. But sometimes, they simply copy, while adjusting slightly, features/skills from another class and placing them into another (e.g. Mortal Strike and Widow Venom). I'm not going to say this hasn't worked by any stretch. But at the same time, I don't like the idea of making a lot of skills 'standard' across multiple classes, each with slight variances.
"But [Insert Class] has this [Insert Ability] and we have nothing to match that"
"It's unfair that [Insert Class] can do this and we can't"
"Every other DPS class has this kind of [ability/feature] and we don't"
I am not for one minute saying that any of these points, in there rightful context, are false or not indeed a real problem. However, from a fair few responses, I have picked up a strong vibe. One which calls out to "Homogenize" the classes. A vibe which really can't sit well with me.
Blizzard has made such a brilliant design in which all the classes are, and have the potential to be, different in their own way, while being able to integrate with each other so well at the same time. Why would you want to have it any other way?
Could you imagine every class, in their respectful roles, having the exact same skills, but with altered animations and names etc. What would be the point of different classes to specialise in? It would ruin everything the game stood for. At least in my opinion.
I've always heard that one class or another is overpowered in PVP (focusing on this section of the game for a moment). At times, many, this has been true and cannot be denied. Though, I see/hear players saying that they need the skill to be on the same level as them. I don't see this as being the way to 'fix' an imbalance. I see a class having it's own unique set of counter abilities being the way forward. Not getting rid of one classes 'ultra' ability because it's too good, and no other class has anything like it, or giving everyone something similar,
So, if it isn't obvious by now, I am strongly against the method of homogenizing of classes. The truth is, at least in my view, that a perfect balance between classes is impossible. Mean, if it was, it would be seriously boring. Not to say that balance should be thrown out of the window, as it is a strong factor which holds this game together. Of course that's not what I am saying at all.
I feel that having a slight advantage/disadvantage in certain situations is a perfectly acceptable sacrifice. It allows you to feel that uncertainty in PVP, and keeps you fighting for those top spots, and ways to achieve them, in raids. It creates an ever changing environment. Allows room for classes to be diverse and different. Keeps the edge on the game.
Most of all, it blesses us with choice.
We come to value our classes for what they are, and what they can offer a team. It makes that moment you click 'create character' all the more important. Imagine two football teams having the exact same players? Basketball teams having height restrictions?! You just find ways to work around them and adapt. Though there are times in which it is appropriate for Blizzard to intervene, yes.
Just because your class can't act exactly the same way it's counter parts can, doesn't mean that it is drawn-back. That's just a part of what your class is. What makes your class unique. You have some things that they haven't! For example, Hunters have a minimum range, which many feel is inappropriate (though I won't start a debate here). Of which, I have come to accept and put down to a way that my class plays. A Mage or Warlock doesn't get to wear mail armor do they?
What is your take on this?
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