Wednesday, 19 October 2011

WoW Blues and Breath of Fresh Air

Let it out...

It's been little over a week since my last post. During this time I have been swinging back and forth on the ropes of uncertainty. Whether 'uncertainty' is the right description is right, I am not sure. Maybe curiosity, burn-out, the sway of interests, time and motives could be in play. Possibly a combination of the lot. Before I go on, this is NOT a half-hearted attempt at a 'farewell to the world (of Warcraft) - bleed your heart out' post.

My uncertainty comes from the future, or at least mine, in World of Warcraft. As of late, I have been reminiscing a lot about past times in the game, which seems to be a regular occurrence now, in and out of game, for many. Whether it be players really expressing their feelings or possibly to spite newer players (which is sometimes the case), it seems to be a reoccurring topic up in discussion. Though this is not a debate about times of old and judging if the present game can touch those golden memories

I've heard uncountable times,  across the past few years, that players are always looking for the next big thing. The alternative to WoW. However many developers have attempted this feat and many have been, to say the least, unsuccessful in taking the number one spot. This being in the subscription numbers mind you. Either way, now it seems that this may be a wavering factor in my 'situation'.

I have pretty much been active within the game for close to four, or so, years. Having taken a substantial break, for whatever reasons, mid-way through wrath, up until the launch of Cataclysm.

I can't describe the buzz that filled me at the very thought of returning to the game, at least after seeing all the big changes lined up for the expansion. Then once jumping in, and of course starting the blog, I made my way to 85 on a brand new character and server etc. Fresh start. Take the game as a whole new experience.

Now, sitting here at 85, reasonably geared and on a steady road of progression, in PVE that is, a feeling has sunk in. I'm not sure if that when I made my come-back and started on a 'clean slate', that I expected the whole experience, including end-game, to be completely different.

Don't catch me taking anything away from Blizzard for the brilliant re-work, mean, I had a blast leveling through all the revitalized zones (maybe excluding the 60-70 Outland period). Heck, even getting stuck in once I hit the level cap proved to be a real treat. Though, now I've quite comfortably become well-established in end-game once again, I've slowly come to a stand-still. Maybe 'comfortable' is part of the issue.

Leper Gnomes and Broomsticks
I have possibly become somewhat 'burnt-out'. Growing at a very fast pace after hitting 85. I feel that it's possibly due to being already accustomed to the way the game works once you get to this point. E.G. Spending time, if not most, preparing for the planned raids. Knowing what to expect and not having that edgy feeling of the unknown. Knowing I'm back in the usual systematic cycle that is WoW.

The main factor which seems to be lingering overhead, is the grind. The grinding. Hours spent leveling professions, gaining reputation, gold and what not, repeatedly running Heroics and all the  necessary involvement, to be able to perform efficiently in the part of the game we want. This being, for the majority, progression raiding, and possibly PVP (which is slightly different, as I will expand on).

Not to be mistaken, it has come a hell of a long way from the amount required, in terms of grinding, since the earlier days. With all the additions and improvements, which I agree with, the grind has been greatly reduced.

Still, I cannot help but feel there is still a lot of focus, for me at least, on the repetitive, boring, and unchallenging 'chores' which seem to take up a considerable amount of time in game. Mean, I don't mind a fair share of repetition, and such, if it allows the game to flow and balance a lot better. But on this extent, just to be able to play your roll effectively. If the tasks were actually a considerable challenge, however, that would make all the difference.

Without a doubt, I am sure that a lot of players do enjoy this element of the design. Say, it is an RPG right? Role-playing being the feeling that you are in a real world, where you have to work, or earn the right, to be able to take a shot at the main objectives. So, I cannot criticise it as a flaw. Although, it now seems to be taking more of a toll, on me, than I thought.

Though, with a in-game crisis (slightly over-dramitic I know) at hand, I have had a breath of fresh air. This has come as I took a dive into the world of PVP. Even though considered a side-game by some, and all the views, I see itas a large enough part alone to prove worthy. Far enough to say it has slightly lifted my gloomy feeling. To an extent it feels like the grind is slightly less, and at least more bearable.  Though, that should wait for another post.

Now, looking on the horizon, there are a number of games to come. Especially in the MMO field. I'm sure I need not to list them. Yes, I can hear you say "they come and go, take a look at the past", but now I see a shift. I see that titles to come are really going to prove strong competitors, and alternatives to the world of Azeroth. Nothing to shy away from. But again, enough for now.

Maybe it may soon just be my time to move on.


Now, I think I have just written my first 'rant'. I could have chosen a number of more interesting, as such, topics, and at least ones with more positivity. Although I wouldn't say I have tried to be negative in any way. I just felt like I should express my thoughts a feelings. It is a blog after all, right.

Anyway, I would really like to hear your responses on this. Do you feel the same? Can't imagine where I picked up this ideology from? Share your view!

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- Jamin


  1. Jamin-

    That is why I stopped playing WoW (well that and I didn't want to pay for it anymore). I had a blast leveling a character to 85, had a good time (the best I could with Pugs) running heroics. Once I realized that once I get my character geared enough to raid, the next patch will be out. I know, most of you are going to say something stupid, so to counter that... REAL LIFE HAPPENED! Anyway, the point is, once you get to a certain point of the game, it is no longer fun and you are constantly having to do the same "Chores" over and over. For some that is great, but I am not one of those people. But then again, there may or may not be another expansion to WoW. If there is your spirits will be high waiting for the next big thing.

  2. @Kosse

    I see what your saying. Mean, don't get me wrong, I have had, and still do, enjoy playing parts of the game. Though those parts require quite a shed-load of work and upkeep to still be able to play efficiently. Such as grinding professions and dailies.

    It's not that I have a problem with having to gear up again and re-optimise myself with each new patch. That's what keeps the game fun and interesting. What puts a downer on that is the side where I need to complete a bundle of unchallenging and boring tasks, which take up so much 'play time', to have any chance to upgrading at any decent rate.

    Glad to see I'm not the only one that this feeling crept up on.

    - Jamin

  3. Think I am there right with you at the moment Jamin. Feels like I'm kinda treading water. You can only do something for so long before it starts to feel a little stale. But I do give credit where credit is due - Wow must be an absolutely amazing game to keep people playing for year on year out. But in the end I think everyone has to move on at some point - but like any relationship that has been good - breaking up is hard to do.

  4. @Dora

    Now, surprisingly I wouldn't expect you to agree. However, on one hand, you have explored every aspect of the game right? So it certainly makes sense.

    I think the word I've been looking for is - Jaded.

    Indeed, the game cannot be down rated for it's player retention rate! Still up there at No.1

    Thanks for dropping by,

    - Jamin


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