Thursday, May 18, 2006

World of Warcraft Q&A... disapointed

Gamespot has an interview up with Blizzard lead designer; Jeff Kaplan. It covers the upcoming Burning Crusades expansion, jewel crafting, Naxxramas (new uber dungeon), 1.11 patch tidbits, and even flying mounts!

But again this is where MMORPG developers disappoint me. They just don't focus their "showing off" on the right audience. Perfect example is this question and answer.
GS: The warrior you're showing here has the full tier 3 armor set. Can you tell us when those items will be in the game?

JK: The exact same team building the expansion is also building the live content updates. The big feature of 1.11 is the Scourge invasion, with Scourge unleashed all over Azeroth and Kalimdor. We're going to have a necropolis floating over the invading Scourge. For the raid players, we'll have Naxxramas, where the tier 3 gear drops.

Basically it tells me that there will be another huge world event that everyone will go crazy over, but Blizzard really doesn't care enough to tell us about how it will reward the average player. That's probably because it won't... just like the war effort for the opening of the AQ gates. It really only rewards the raiders in the end. So no fear... as you can tell they were more than eager to hip-check the tidbit about Tier 3 armor in there.

It's bad enough they were showing off a Tier 3 uberfied warrior in the first place. Because we all know that 3.6% of us are hardcore raiders and it's nice that they are paying attention to informing the vast majority of us about content we will be consuming.

Don't get me wrong... WoW is a great game. Blizzard just has a bad habbit of distancing the hardcore raiders from the casual majority. In the end it really just creates two communities and eventually that leads to the complaint that WoW's overall community blows goat nuts. Blizzard could do a lot to satisfy the casual gamer's attitude towards raiders if the world events were better presented and executed.

World events should be about the majority, rewarding the majority, and most of all pleasing the majority. The hardcore raiders are going to be there either way with their nice little raid schedules and farm status instances. Face it... Blizzard sucks at making casual gamers excited to log in. How about a little focus on the casual content that is coming out... enough with showing off the Tier 3 bullshit that only 0.1% of the players will ever actually achieve!
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