….where did it all go wrong.
It all starts all well and good at the beginning, we chose a faction, we choose a race and class we would like to play and we end up in a starting zone. We either work our way through all of the starting quests if it is our first time playing that particular area, or we quickly find out way to the main capital to set our hearths because we know so well where everything is, our banks, our Auction House, the trainers, and the flight plans. From there on, we are faced with choices, do I go north and proceed through that area, do I go south through zones I have completed before and know how to power level through, or do I just do what I need to get to a point where I can use the group finder and race to level cap. Every expansion beyond the original has had added content that we need to complete in order to get to the “End Game” Get to max level, don’t worry about all you missed, you can go back any time to do that. It was a mantra I heard many times when leveling my first character. Get to 80 ASAP, don’t worry about gear, you will replace it so fast it is not worth enchanting or geming. Don’t bother with old raids, you can solo them at max level.
We have brought the current design state upon ourselves, we race to get to the top, then wonder why there is a drought of things to do. Oh look a new raid, Nom Nom Nom, we consume it as fast as they can design it, possibly even faster.
We often hear the catch phrase, well we could probably do something like that at the cost of a raid tier. I am almost wondering if it might not actually be worth the sacrifice to have viable content to work on that is not a raid. Would it be better to have more things to occupy our time out in the world, rather than in an instance for a few hours a week. I am sure there are many that could care less if I had things to do outside of a raid, raiding is their life, why do they need to quest and level, why can’t they just start at max and raid on day 1. Why aren’t there 45 raid bosses an expansion. Just as there are those that want for better PvP options and activities. 10 million people 10 million ideas on what is fun and engaging. I think they have tried their best to give as many people things to do in the game as they can possibly have, and maybe it is too much, considering the lack of depth some things have. Not in the activity itself, but in the directions if you will on what to do with it.
Pet battles, you love em or hate them, at this point it is no longer something you pick up at level 100 and start playing in Draenor, you either need a great deal of gold to buy yourself a decent team in order to power up additional ones, or you need to go back to the start and grind your way through. It is fine to casually collect them, do a Pet Tamer fight here and there, but the more advanced play requires work and strategy that is not for someone to just pick up.
Garrisons. Where do I even start describing the problems that started this whole train of thought. I found out today reading the Alternative Blog that you can level bodyguards. Say what? Ok, yeah, like many, I am sure most of us have clicked on one and seen them follow us around the Garrison, but apparently we can have 1 of 5 potential bodyguards follow us out in the world, our own little army. Now wait a sec, surely there must have been some indication we could do this. I mean in the Garrison interface I see where we could assign followers to buildings, I have sent them out on missions everyday since launch, I have oh about 24 total, probably a dozen around 640-645, even one at 650. So why am I seeing people stocking up on armor upgrades, why aren’t they boosting all the followers they have to get the best equipped to send on missions. Well apparently, I am a true casual in that I do not have a small army maxed at 655 waiting for the next patch to drop so that I can quickly boost them higher for higher level missions. Again, surely this information is in the interface? Well what about on WoW’s site.
Nope. And a quick search shows nothing has been updated there since prior to launch day. Lets look at invasions, we have all seen our friends get them, we have seen trade chat asking for help to get gold, even hints from PTR data mining that there will be a new platinum rank, but how do we get them, I have never personally had an invasion, I have no clue beyond someone telling me I need to do the Apexis dailies, I have done some, not a lot, but maybe half a dozen or possibly more, and have absolutely no idea what I am doing wrong. Did I maybe not complete some quest? Do I need to finish all of the Garrison campaign quest achievements? Maybe I need more followers. I don’t know.
Because apparently I do not WoW Head enough. Yes, I have looked up quests on the site when some portion did not make sense or some item was not where it should be. I did see prior to WoD launch they had a garrison calculator which I played around with but really did not teach me all that much. I do not go looking to other web sites for guides on what I need to do to play the game. My primary source has always been WoW’s web site. Most of the blogs are informative and give you the information you need. On rare occasions I will try looking in General forums. But I never in my wildest dreams thought that I would need to be looking at a site other than Blizzards for basic information about a feature as big as the Garrisons have become.
I think back on the last 4 months of playing, how many times I went to an area and backed away because there were many level 100+ elites ready to chew me up. How many nights have I just sat there all by myself trying to find something to do, some purpose to leave the Garrison and go explore, to do something. The Treasure’s are an exercise in frustration, unless you have an add on program directing you to the spot. Yes, you may find a few here and there, but with the settings on my computer turned all the way down, sometimes I barely can see the purple outline of something.
Don’t get me wrong. I love World of Warcraft, I have played it for more than 5 years, I have raided progression, I did as a brand new player that started 9 months into Wrath, ICC before any buffs all the way to Sindragosa, I have done, PvP, presently I have over 16,100 achievement points. I have played the game. I have not focused on any one aspect. I have tried everything at one point or another in the years I have played. And let me say, these last 3 months have been nothing but frustration with the lack of information about what we need to do. The questing and starting experience was great, it flowed from the start all the way to where we first made our home in Draenor. Beyond that it has been a crap shoot. You can find your way to certain hubs, but more often than not you will find yourself in area you should not be in. With my PC, some times there can be a 2 second lag from entering an area to finding myself right on top of a Silver elite. And lets just say that there are many graveyards that are really poorly located compared to where you may die. Spending 5-10 minutes running around mountain ranges, only to give up and take the rez sickness and repair bill is certainly not a fun evening. Especially when you spend a good 20+ minutes a day just running around your garrison doing work orders. I do not know how anyone can have more than 3-4 alts in a Garrison doing work orders.
Now that I know I will have to go elsewhere to find information I wished I had months ago, I may actually venture out into the world. I don’t know. I have lost all desire to do anything more than log in and hang out. I am sure in the grand scheme it does not matter, I am paying my $15 a month one way or the other, it is not up to them to make me do anything other than keep my subscription. But I am seeing the comments, I am seeing people start to leave. Perhaps for other reasons, but they are. I have always said I would be here until the end. But the reality of being an adult is I have to be able to justify that $15 a month, the couple of hundred dollars I may need to spend in order to try raiding once again, the cost of the high speed Internet connection, and now seeing may sites resorting to Crowdfunding just to stay open. Money is tight everywhere, and if it comes down to it, my subscription will be the first to go, possibly my wifes too. I have always played because she loved the game and the people. I have made so many friends here, have met so many wonderful people, and it would be the most difficult thing I ever did, to leave. But when I am not looking forward to logging in every night, when I have no desire to do anything more than LFR a few times, then there is something major wrong, perhaps with me and my expectations, perhaps with the direction of the game. But there is a problem.
End massive rant. And I apologize if I have offended any.