Thursday, December 11, 2014

Do You Like Change?

When this expansion was first announced we all knew we would be in for a fair deal of changes.  The stat squish meaning different numbers, ability pruning meaning less abilities, stats like hit, expertise, dodge and parry being removed, stats like multistrike, versatility, and tertiary being added, there were a lot of changes happening and the ones I mentioned were only the tip of the iceburg.

Some people hated it, some people welcomed it, most people had a "lets wait and see" feeling about it.  But that is a lot of change to throw down our throats at one time.  There is no doubt about that.  Even if you were the type of person that was open and welcoming to change you would be willing to say it was going to be a lot to take in.

As people got to experience things they noticed a lot of other changes.  Changes in professions were huge and sweeping.  Changes in what we have to do at level 100 where huge as the focus switched.  Changes to the end game raiding system from flex for all except for a single sized max difficulty.  No matter where you went or where you looked there was something about the game that changed and did not change just a little, did not update like what we knew from change in previous expansions, it was full on change, everywhere.

Some people look at it, in part, as warcraft reborn and I guess you could think of it that way.  We had fewer stats, fewer abilities, smaller numbers and craftable items that only needed a skill level of 1 to make.  Almost as if we really were starting over.  That is a pretty big change.

Personally I will be the first to admit I am not a huge fan of change, even more so change that I do not personally feel needed.  But that of course is based on personal opinion.  I would have been fine with larger numbers, I liked that I was only able to craft things with my professions because I put in the work to level them, and I sure as hell would love to have scatter shot back.

However I would also like to believe I am somewhat reasonable when I believe there is reason to be so.  While I would have been fine with larger numbers I can surely see why the game needed a squish.  Things like that.  So even if I am against change normally I am open to it when I feel it is being done for the greater good.

It was easy, even when they were unwelcome, to accept the changes that were going on with the game because they were all on beta.  We had advanced knowledge of them.  They were all part of a game that wasn't yet out.  It was a large chunk of information to take in, sure, but it was one big book of changes we had to read.

But now that warlords is out we are still seeing changes left and right.  Seemingly more each week.  Some within reason, some that leave you scratching your head.  And no I am not talking about balancing the classes, but some of those changes too might have you wondering what blizzard is thinking, but that is another story.

Someone posted a comment here last week I believe it was that I must say I agree with 100%.  They said that we are effectively playing an open beta.  Warlords was released in a beta state and blizzard is using the full force of ten million players to beta test it.

He / She made that comment well before this recent influx of changes and I agreed with them then.  Now, after a series of changes seemingly daily, I believe it more strongly.  We really are playing an open beta.

Even if I am the type that generally dislikes changes I was able to accept them before the game was released but this recent influx of changes almost every day to what is supposed to be a basically finished release and things I think did not need changing is really starting to get to me.  No, not bothering me in the sense that I would quit or rage or what have you about it.  But bother me to the point of, "if it is not broke don't fix it".  It is getting frustrating to keep seeing a live game changed in ways that are rather hard to understand.  What is even more frustrating is the fact that all these things they are changing should have been changed on beta.

Funny part is, if they were changed on beta it would have not bothered me at all, not even in the slightest.   But once you have a game go live you expect that game to be what that game is.  If I have been farming talbuk meat for potions, or stockpiling it, it is wrong for it to be removed from the materials needed for the potions.  If they wanted it changed it should have been changed on the beta.  Mind you, I was not stockpiling, just asking, if I were, it is wrong for blizzard to make changes just for the sake of making changes on a live game.

I can accept some changes, mostly with a game in development because that is when changes are supposed to be happening.  But I am really starting to get tired of blizzard changing a live game for absolutely no reason what so ever.

Was the fact people actually needed to go out in the world and fish and kill animals for fish and meat really such a huge game breaking issue that they needed those items to be removed from things?  I would think blizzard would be more open to the idea, in this extremely content light expansion, of having something that made people want to go out in the world.  Farming fish and meat would serve that purpose wouldn't it?

In the end, when myself, and I am sure hundreds or maybe even thousands of others, mentioned on beta "shouldn't alchemy use more herbs and not meat and fish and ore" they should have done something about it then.  Not now.  Now it is live and there is no reason to change it.  People have notice what they need and they will go get it if they want it.  As I said, and if this gets them out in the world playing instead of sitting in their garrison, isn't that a good thing?

Changing it in beta I could accept, changing it now is change for changes sake.

So do I like all these changes coming down the pipes almost daily?


  1. I saw that change and it completely baffled me. It wasn't an adjustment to numbers, meaning people had to grind more or less, it was a complete change of item which is not done in a live game for precisely the reason you just gave. People might have been grinding and stockpiling mats, to just change it is strange and strange.

    I think that's about the word of the day - strange. It makes no logical sense. Sure I get changing it on beta, trying out different things and all but the decision had been made. It should have been irreversible. I don't get it.

    I'm not a fan of the changes. I accept that for quality of life and all the numbers squish had to happen. I suppose I don't mind the loss of hit/expertise as all I did was hard cap it. I don't mind the loss of dodge/parry as they were dump stats. I hate the new stats, I miss reforging. I loathe the profession changes. I'm troubled by the direction blizz is taking, thinking that these kind of changes on a live game is ok. Numbers tweaking I get but those mats changes were a step too far IMO.

    I do like garrisons, I just hate what it did to professions. I miss flying. Mists brought some good things, I absolutely love active mitigation, my pally was all but perfect in Mists. However, if I had designed Warlords I would have reverted some changes. I would have brought back the Wrath/Cata gearing model of points and dungeons. LFR would be tuned how you said it was yesterday and would award the same sort of stuff it is now, but on the same ilevel as dungeons. Let people choose what they want, if LFR is tuned appropriately then it would actually be a choice.

    So no I don't like all these changes coming daily. Some I get but a lot seem unnecessary and even more seem like they really should have been caught and dealt with by now. They had a full beta cycle, they had a full expansion cycle which caused a 14 month gap between patches. There is no excuse.

    1. Yeah, I don't think I have ever seen a complete change like that in any live game before. Adjustments, sure, but not a complete change in the materials needed. That was an odd one.

      I agree that they had no excuse. I know there was a lot of talk on beta about the materials needed. People did not like it and they mentioned it, I mentioned it, it is not like they did not have people telling them things did not seem right.

      It seems odd that they would change something that much after it went live. They could have tweaked it so you got more potions per meat or something like that, but why completely change something after it came out.

      More so if we really only have 11 months left of this expansion like they promised. (oh please only 11 months left of it)

  2. Not necessarily a change since going live, but fits on the "strange" category.
    Why did we lose valor and justice points? The model may change in later tiers but haven't we just swapped them out for apexis crystals?

    We get the daily quest instead of the dungeon; and we still have gear purchases. The only difference is that you cant chain heroics and apexis has slighly more (not many) uses

    1. In a way, yes, valor and justice became apexis, but apexis gear can not hold a candle to valor and justice gear in item level comparison or cost comparison. Not to mention valor and justice could be (at one point) used for other things like converting to honor and conquest, which is usually how I started to gear for PvP once I was done with gearing for PvE and I really miss that.

      As it turns out, it is more strange than anything else. And it seems an effort to slow us down, yet all the other changes of recent seem to be to speed us up. Which is what the idea of my mixed messages post the other day. Makes no sense.

  3. ooooooh dammit. I was planning to buy some talbuk meat for GR just now, lucky I read your post first.

    What's that kind of change, anyway? Sure the meat requirement was crap, but on the other hand, now meat doesn't serve any purpose. Also, I've spent thousands of gold on meat to build a stockpile of pots.

    Yeah changes like this leave me completely baffled.

    1. Not sure when the changes are going live, but they did say they are changes they are going to make.

      See, changes like this are what I am talking about. Most people will not know, and it is going to really screw them over big time.

      They should leave it as is. If they wanted to "adjust" it they could have had it make an extra pot or two per meat. That would have been find in terms of adjustment. Leave the meat, add a few herbs, make it give you more than it gives now. Say 5 more. Done.

    2. yeah, right? the way they changed it is nonsene. on top of it I don't like when they meddle with economics. i'd like to know that the mats I invest in now will still be worth anything in two weeks.

      but in any case the meat prices have already plummeted, maybe I'll buy the stuff up and produce a few stacks of pots if it's cheaper.

    3. The economic factor is huge. I know a few people that were making money hand over fist because they were willing to grind the food. It created a market that is now gone.

      If ever there were a reason for blizzard to not make a huge change like that this is it. You can not mess with the economy like that.

      It would be like a vendor popping up in ashran that sold the 665 BoEs for 1K gold screwing everyone that was selling them or buying and selling to flip for profit. Same with meat and fish. They did the equivalent of selling the 665 BoEs for pocket change.

      Food still sold well on my server. To the point where at least 2 people I know of in guild were pull over 100K a week just of boar meat and talbuk meat sales.

  4. Ha! Don't tell upper management you don't like change you will be labeled as a bad worker bee :P

    The reaction in my guild was openly excitement about the fish and meat change.

    So I thought you would enjoy this tale as a lover of all RNG. Last night in our Highmaul raid I finally spent some of my EPGP on a neck item that dropped this is the only Item I've spent points on I have one other slot that has a highmaul item in it from a free roll. at the end of the night I got back to my garrison and oh my rare raid mission had popped I easily 100% it and go to bed with dreams of a new item. This morning they are back and they have a shiny item for me lo and behold the fuckers troll me and bring me the same god damn neck item. I can see my followers going thru their raid grabbing up tons of loot and then remembering oh yeah need to get something for the commander lets give him the same thing he has hahaha. I can't wait for the latrine mission to pop up again I know who I'm sending out on it.

    1. I am a horrible worker bee. I like things that work, not changing things for the sake of changing. And I am not afraid to bark about it.

      That sucks big time. I got the same neck from mine, but at least I needed it. Seems like of all the people I know that got that mission they all got a neck thus far.

      Sounds like you have been hanging out with me too much lately. My luck is rubbing off on you now. But I did manage to get a bow last night, so that is better luck than I am used to.

      Sorry about infecting you with my luck. It was not intended. lol

    2. haha we we're actually joking about this in guild it's not you tho it's a guildie we've had a player that no matter what class he picks since wotlk he's always screwed on loot. He never gets drops and he's always the last to get items. Well the same thing was happening in WoD so i spent a lot of time with him grinding out heroics to get him ready to raid and all the sudden he started getting loot about that time my loot missions dried up and my bonus rolls are for only gold. meanwhile he's decked out and is one of the best geared players in the raid. Oh I know who stole my luck and if I could send him on a mission to clean the bathroom I would!

    3. Looks like he is the one that stole your luck. Hopefully you get it back soon, or can at least share. I must say of all the things in game nothing is more frustrating in game than the RNG of gear when you need gear to get things done most of the time.

  5. Anon, Grumpy's former Guild Leader:

    Blizzard changes things, warranted or not, desired or not. They have no conception of "it ain't broke, so don't fix it" and "leave well enough alone" is a foreign concept altogether, one that was never heard of inside their office walls. Tinkering with minor changes always becomes drastic re-hauls. That was the problem with Cata, in that they got overly enthusiastic about redrawing the old world and forgot to remember that what they did will be in game for a long long while--hence two expansions later rescuing folks from the aftermath of Auberdine's destruction is still an on-going affair.

    Blizzard makes a new game every time an expansion is released. Every class undergoes fundamental change, based on an existing template of spec to be sure but still dramatically different every time for every class from one expansion to the next.

    The world rules change. Flight appears and then disappears behind cost barriers or artificial class level limits or just isn't available as is currently the case in Draenor. Creatures that could be skinned suddenly can't be because now they are a player character race instead of the more logical minus five Gilnean rep per NPC worgen skinned for alliance players, with Player Characters being unskinnable just for the player's sake.

    I won't go into the long list of things changed for the sake of change. It is well known enough by any player with familiarity for the game. But just for illustration, let me ask this: how has your class changed since you began playing and was there not an iteration of your favored class and spec that you liked better than any other? Why could Blizzard not try to stabilize what a class can and can't do, so that my shadow priest or my whirlwind monk or retribution paladin could have a consistent set of abilities?

    In other news, last night I purchased my first copy of WoD so my 90s can began playing again on a more regular basis. Level 100 here I come (but oh so slowly as I don't believe Blizzard will have a new expansion out in less than one year and 9 months at best). And unless flight is restored to its proper place and made available and accounted for, this may well be my last expansion. Getting to old to keep up with the changes I guess...

    1. See you draenor then. Enjoy the trip and if you decide to quest it out, there is a good story there even if it doesn't quite make sense. I loved the story in the spires.

      The redesigning of the world for cataclysm was probably the single worst decision they have ever made in the history of the game in my opinion. Updating was needed, yes, but what they did was a waste of resources and completely uncalled for.

      My class has probably gone through the most changes since I started playing. All classes say they have changed, but hunters have really changed in ways other classes could never even comprehend. Just the chance of resources is enough to make most heads spin thinking about it and that was one of many changes hunters had to deal with. Some worked, like focus for example, some others didn't. But yes, they have changed my class more than I wish to think about it.

      I am getting old there with you my friend. Too many changes, most not for the betterment of the game, and I am getting tired of this "change for change sake" attitude that blizzard keeps throwing at us.

  6. My view on change... is probably like most people, which means I don't mind change if it doesn't affect me in a bad way. If it affects me in a good way, I like it. If I don't see how it will affect me, I don't care. Though usually people try to guess how it will affect them in a bad way when they don't see the effects.
    Oh. And new stuff I usually like.

    So - herb change - don't care. Because I don't do pots. I have an Alchemist lvl 91 who doesn't have an Alchemy building yet so I was only doing the daily cooldowns. And they are ore and some plants which suits me just fine as my main is a miner. I'll see if I miss it.

    1. You don't do pots??? They are twice as powerful as flasks (1000 agi for 25 sec out of 60 is 416 agi avg, flask is 200 agi, greater flask is 250 agi) - and that's before we count in lining them up for burst...

    2. I actually like the change from a personal perspective. Even if I do use pots. Saves me a lot of time farming, and makes sure I never need to waste gold on over priced meats if I do not have to the time to do so.

      Even if I like the change, and I do, I still think it is a stupid change that should not have happened. Even if it was a good change for me, I have to look at the bigger picture and that is one that shows how it really hurts many people who were making gold from it, and it really hurts a content light expansion but, effectively, removing content.

      @PvP Anon

      I believe James is a tank. Tanks usually use pots for defensive reasons. Some tanks that like to push for DPS might prepot but otherwise prepoting is useless for a tank.

      Unless you are using the rage potion on a druid or warrior, which I am surely going to do.

  7. I generally hate mechanics changes in MMORPG's,

    This probably stems from the fact that I am what Beau Hindman called 'core gamer' and others (in non-computer gaming) a 'hobby gamer', the group of players who like investing time in the games they play (unlike the 'ForFun' player some call 'extreme casuals') but not to the point it becomes their 'sole calling' (unlike the hardcore types who e.g. live in Beta so they can find exploitable gaps so they can plonk down a World First etc.) .

    In other words, I don't have unlimited resources but do want to expend effort and see that effort have results. That means my in-game actions are based upon justifiable expectations, and a mechanics change can completely negate the effort I expended (good examples would be titles going accountwide, profession changes, and the wiping of Acrheology progress).
    That blows, and makes me want to play MMORPG's less.

    1. Guess that makes me a core gamer too because I agree with how you explained it.

    2. Most bloggers (and their readers) are, things only go amiss the moment these more invested players think they actually 'belong' to the 'hardcore' (e.g. complaining that a certain aspect to gain more in-game power isn't fun while at the same beating their chests that they are the 'elite' - hardcores don't complain, they just bite their lips - which gets especially silly once you compare current gameplay with e.g the Vanilla GM grind, or early EQ raiding with it's un-Instanced, tag-switching, random-pop progression bosses)

    3. I am the total opposite of that. I wish gear were more available, let everyone have a way to get it, from the quest only person, to the dabble in it all but not really focused on one thing person, to the dungeon person to the LFR, normal, heroic or mythic person.

      I've always said that gear progression is what keeps people playing. If they keep the gear behind walls, some that people can not get past, they will stop playing. They need to keep gear flowing for everyone, not just the raider that can keep pushing it further.

      The whole concept of being "upset" because someone else got something months after I did baffles me. Why should I care if they did? Why should anyone care?

  8. its not the changes I am against, it's not telling us about the changes or of the changes. I have put in tickets daily, adding on to them 3 or 4 things about crap that was one way, then suddenly, appear not to be so - for example - revive pet icon disappearing. turns out blizzard combine it. The damned GM had the audacity to tell me, go look it up on Wowhead. Fuck that. If I wanted to use wowhead, I would subscribe to it. More like it should have been mentioned in a readme file. But there has been other things like that and unlike some who read here, I like to bitch to the gms by putting in tickets. My money, my time to play, my enjoyment and my inner self not being fulfilled. :Þ

    -roo "the grouchy old cuss"

    1. I've noticed a lot of changes they do not tell us about. All over the place. There have been changes to mobs in the world, changes to mechanics, changes to regents, changes to tons of things they never even mentioned. While many of the changes they made I like, such a follower items stacking, they should tell us they are making these changes.

      I have a guild mate that had an issue and put in a ticket and the GM told him the same thing, look it up on wowhead. He was writing about a bug in a quest. What the hell does that have to do with looking it up on wowhead? The GMs are usually somewhere between clueless and braindead with the occasional one that has a clue. When you put in a ticket it is like hitting the lotto to get one that has a clue. Have to love those GM replies that have nothing to do with what you asked. It leaves you wondering did they even read the ticket before replying to it?