Is the End Game that important?

First let me say that I am amazed that I have not seen the critics like I have in years past decrying handing out unearned gear.  Cries of stop handing out unearned Epics, you’re catering to the Casuals.  Perhaps no one has picked up on it, maybe it’s because they are Blue Text items.

So, has the End Game, become so important, that they are now throwing gear at people in order to give them the tools to run the content?  Has the bar to raid been raised so high that it has come to this point?  Was the decision to rely on gear improvements to make fights easier been so wrong in place of a Nerf that it has come to this.

Ok, enough suspense.  Lets get to the gist of the topic.

Timewalker dungeons.  This week we saw patch 6.2.2

I-Believe-I-Can-Fly-Lafline

Yeah, everyone pay attention to being able to fly now.  Don’t look behind the curtain over here where we are in a panic because we see a problem.  Running your first Timewalker Dungeon this weekend will award you a quest turn in for 500 tokens.  Running it twice will award about 50 tokens, 5 times there is a quest reward of a piece of loot, I am guessing at 675 iLvL.  Now a few weeks ago you could get some 650 gear, not bad.  A decent jump to someone catching up or gearing an Alt. But now I see something very disturbing.  At the vendor there is a slew of 675 Blue Gear for 50 Tokens each.  So with 2 dungeon runs you could conceivably purchase 11 pieces of 675 gear.  11.  Pretty much every gear slot in 675 for running 2 Timewalker dungeons.

Wow.  Last month you could run many and get a decent amount of 650 gear, you could do content in Tannan for 650, possibly a rare 675 Epic, and if you farmed enough, upgrade to 695.  So what is next up for the Timewalking dungeons, in 2 months will we see it raised to 695?  4 months from now when the expansion is winding down it raised to 715?  Higher?  Are they so desperate to get people to raid the End Game, that they are now just throwing gear at people for next to no effort.  It says a lot to me as a player that has a limited schedule and tries to improve myself and work for all I have achieved to see how easily they are just handing out gear.  I have not even completed a full set of Hellfire LFR and already out gear Normal gear drops.  I would need to run Heroic content to improve more.  It really shows to at least me, the sad state that raiding has become, the decision that eventually your gear will improve to defeat the content.

Maybe people have gotten tired of the endless fight.  The hundreds of wipes to get a fight down before moving to the next, the weeks of working only to have time run out and a new tier release.  Maybe it is just me.  Maybe I am reading too much into it.  But all I recall is years of complaints about people working for weeks collecting Justice or Valor to buy that one piece of gear, that it was being handed to them, to now an hour and a half to two hours rewarding you with so much 675 gear that I have to wonder,

why-1

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6 thoughts on “Is the End Game that important?

  1. I got really surprised yesterday when I saw that vendor and realized I could upgrade tons of stuff. As I had almost just dinged, and gone to a timewalker dungeon. Straight after I could just stuff my face in new gear. It did feel a bit over the top.

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  2. How is Time Walking gear different to Timeless Isle gear that you didn’t even have to be on your toon to acquire?

    End of expansion catch up gear mechanics have been in the game a long time. Timewalking means you run stuff on your toon and have a chance of getting gear. My priest got ilvl 660 pieces tonight, none of which were upgrades. Mostly I’m running them to use Val’ynar. I did get a 675 chest piece that was an upgrade, but that would be superseded by Tanaan Jungle stuff if I actually did anything with her besides heal.

    Not everyone can raid, not everyone has the option to run raid after raid to get a gear upgrade. Not everyone has time to run raids on every toon they want to gear up for the next expansion. Raiding should never be the sole way for people to gear up their toons. It’s great that you already outgear normal HFC, not everyone is at your gear level.

    What is interesting is that after killing off Valor/Justice as gear currencies, they then replaced them with more gear currencies through out the expac. Why not just keep the old system instead.

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      1. Oh, I should clarify. I am at 698 and I have not raided this current tier. That’s just running around the Jungle an hour a night, and upgrading everything Baleful to 695 with crystals. The 650 token drops were like Timeless ones to mail off. What I saw last night was that you could run 1 Timeless dungeon, turn in a quest for 500 tokens, and buy up 10 pieces of 675 gear. That is not a catch up mechanic. That’s just throwing almost a full set of 675 gear at people for 30 minutes of play.

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  3. I am less concerned about “handing out” gear than I am about your other more disturbing point — that the end game, which consists almost exclusively of raiding, is so gear-dependent. I am not conversant with any class but hunters, but take them as an example. The MM spec really does not reach its full balance until a player has the 4-piece tier set from at least Normal level HFC. And since the tier gear drops using RNG, getting the set pretty much REQUIRES clearing HFC on a farm basis.

    Since such a heavy raid commitment is something only a small percentage of players will ever do, and since the bar to even thinking about such a commitment — even if the player goes the pug route — is so onerously high, Blizz has tried to lower it by handing out “raid starter” gear, increasing the level of the gear as the entry level for end game raiding gets higher. This is just fundamentally wrong, crafting an end game and full class actualization available to only a very few players, then flooding the game with a minimum level admission ticket.

    Blizz has designed a highly restrictive end game and is trying to push more players into it, rather than provide a rich and varied end game that will naturally attract more players. Handing out gear is really the least concerning thing about this.

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    1. I guess that’s what I was driving at. Are they just handing out admission tickets like an Oprah Winfrey episode. You get full 675, you get full 675, now go in there and get raiding

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