Friday, February 27, 2015

For Love and Hate of the Hot Fix

Warcraft is always evolving, adjusting, making changes as needed to try and keep thing working as intended.  Sometimes that means hot fixing a talent, a mechanic, an achievement, what have you.  This is all done with us, the players, in mind.

Sometimes you love a hot fix.  Say your raid group is having issues with a boss because it was harder than intended and suddenly they reduce the health of the adds, like what they did on horridon on 10 man which helped out many guilds.  It is one of those things where if you beat the fight already it doesn't matter to you, you are already past it and can pass it again easily but if you were one of those guilds stuck behind the wall it is a welcome fix that helps you move along.

That is what hot fixes are for.  To try to keep things moving along, to let players feel as if they are progressing.  After all we all need to keep moving forward or the game becomes stagnant and that is when people start to give up, lose interest, or just flat out quit.  Hot fixing is usually in the best interest of the game.

How we as players react to the hot fixes however is basically what our personal opinions are.  As with the example I gave above.  There were some people that did not like the fix to the horridon fight.  They called it a nerf.  The difference is a hot fix is to fix something that was harder or easier than intended and a nerf is just to make things easier over all.  The dragon soul or icecrown citadel  5% buff/debuff was a nerf, the scaling of adds on horridon in 10 man was a hot fix.  But that would not change the minds of some people who would think otherwise.

Bottom line is with each hot fix you will either love it or hate it.

I've been hating on most of the achievement hot fixes this expansion thus far personally.  I hate them because of when they came mostly, not because they happened.  I can understand why they happened, well, some of them at least.

So that all brings me to the hot fix that is coming that made me think to write about them.  There is going to be a hot fix coming for getting the Harrison Jones follower that I am hating on right now.  Why you might ask?  Glad you did because I was planning on telling you even if you didn't.

To get the follower you had needed to do the 6 new relic hunter quests that come to a garrison near you on a daily basis as well as do all the follower missions associated with them.  The fix is that you no longer need to do the missions, you only need to do the 6 quests to get him now.

While this means it will be easier and faster to get him for many it also means yesterday I wasted a ton of time and resources.  As you might know, I am not a fan of wasting my time.  That means, I hate this hot fix.  See, for me, I only hate hot fixes that make me feel as if I wasted my time.  Things that if I knew they were coming I would have done things differently.  That is why I hate this hot fix.  If I knew it was coming, even more so coming this quickly, I would have done things differently.

What I did was take advantage of the fact you could speed along the missions by buying something from the archeology vendor which would give you a relic hunter mission for 5 restored artifacts.  I used all my stashed restored artifacts for them.  I did not stop there either, I also went through my collection of characters on my server that had motes of harmony and spirits of harmony and sent them all to my hunter.  I had 16 characters on that server that had some, so needless to say I had a lot.

I then went to the shrine and at a rate of 3 spirits of harmony per restored artifact I spent every one I had to get a nice stash of restored artifacts.  I then went back and bought more things to start the missions.  In the end I spent a lot of time, all my spirits, sacrificed turning the crates in for tol'vir fragments which is what I had been doing to try to get the damn mount and pet that still elude me, all in an effort to speed up getting Harrison Jones as a follower.

It required a lot from me to try to get the follower, hopefully, by the 6th day when I do the 6th daily, baring no repeats.  And now I don't need to do the missions!!!

Can you see why I am pissed?  I can somewhat under stand hot fixing some achievements because they need it.  I was upset with the change to the draenor money one going down from 10,000 to 2,500 because I had already done the 10,000 version, but I can deal with it.  I was actually happy with the change to savage friends to only needing 1 exalted reputation instead of 3 because it made more sense even if I already had the 3 at exalted.  I even support the change to the engineer building only needing to test some of the toys and not all even if it does annoy me that they made that change the day after I finally had used all of them and got the achievement, but it was a needed one as I see it.

But this change?  It just came out.  What is it, 2 days old in the UK and 3 days old in the US.  Was it really needed to fix it that quickly?  It did not even have any time to see if it was indeed broken. 

In time everyone would have managed getting all the missions without even trying, the missions would come to them in their garrison.  If they really wanted it they could rush it the way I did.  It was not a hard achievement to get or a big deal to begin with.  You still needed to wait 6 days no matter what because you had to do the six dailies and in those six days you could have easily gotten enough restored artifacts, like I did, to get all the missions you needed if you wanted to speed it up.  Why change it?  There was no need for this, even more so that there was a way already built in game to speed it up and make it even easier than it already is.

That is really a hot fix I am feeling the hate for. 

Do you want to know which achievement I would love to see fixed and made easier like that?  The bigger bags one.  I spent so much time on 20+ characters on the timeless island.  I killed every rare there at least 100 times and most likely much more and the process is account wide and I still do not have that achievement.  Why don't they change that one to only needing 80% of the items collected?  That one makes sense to fix.  Harrison Jones does not.  Bigger bag was hard because it involves RNG, Harrison Jones is not because all it requires is time.  Yet they fix the one that doesn't need it and leave the one that does need it alone.   For the love and hate of hot fixes indeed.

Have there been any hot fixes you hated?

Have there been any hot fixes you loved?

How has blizzards hot fix crazy ways of this expansion been treating you?


  1. Ouch!
    I don't remember being affected by hotfixes much. For example at Megaera I recall doing it week 1 by stacking 4 paladins. Din't bother me in the least the heads had half life next week.
    I'm usually too slow on stuff to actually end up in your situation. Maybe I've bene pissed off on changes to my class (nerfs) because I didn't get the chance to benefit from their OPnesss like others did, but can't say for sure if hotfix or patch. No threat for heals seems pretty crap and uncalled for, though.

    1. Kind of sucks I wasted all those restored artifacts on getting the missions now. Even more so being I have been using them to try and get the mount and pet from tol'vir. I think that is what bothers me most about it. I wasted a limited resource that I was saving for something I really wanted and I did not need too. :(

      You are the opposite of me in that sense, too slow on things like this, but faster on the raid stuff. I rarely get to raid bosses before they have been adjusted. A few here and there, but usually they are smooth by the time I get there.

  2. Well, I'm really sorry you wasted so many mats on something that got hotfixed away so fast. If I was in your place I'd try to get it back via GM, even if the chances are slim. The worst thing that can happen is a stern warning anyways.

    I've not been affected by hotfixes at all, I think. But the way blizzard handles some achievements really leaves me wondering. What was their thought process behind the Jones change? After 10 years you'd think they'd be more........ professional.

    The level 3 building hotfixes also came way too late. It was pretty obvious that some were severely out of line (menagerie) or purely illogical (TP).

    1. I had thought for a second to ask to get them back but decided against it. Not worth it and I can farm up more. All I lost was time really and even if I hate wasting time their will surely be more time to come. And in the long run I do want to get the other achievement anyway. At least I will get it faster now. Trying to look at the bright side.

      I keep saying the same thing with some stuff. You would figure with 10 years of experience that they might have gotten a little better at this stuff.

      TP was illogical. Needed three reps and the reward was increased rep gain that was not account wide? If it were account wide it made sense. But not if it were on one character. On beta it was account wide. Wonder why they changed that part.

  3. My prefered playstyle tends to be affected more by Patches and undocumented changes (like suddenly putting a level requirement on the original Blasted Lands Dark Portal a few years back) than Hotfixes, which used to be pretty much only done regarding Raid content.

    So in that sense the current policy of hotfixing other aspects as well could be seen as positive.

    However, the speed, drasticness (is that a word?) and sheer frequency of hotfixes since WoD launch is rather appaling and underscores what a shoddy piece of crock they asked people to shell out extra for WoD really is. You don't make such drastic changes like you described so quickly if you've actually tested or even thought over the things you churn out.

    As for annoying hotfixes, a recent one would be the severe nerf to Bonus Armor values on more vintage gear.

    Besides the ones that complained about it being predominantly Heirloom-totting Hunters, armed-to-the-teeth 99's and other such 'well-balanced in PvP' characters that, unlike Tanks, add nothing to the LFG queues and what not, the whole BA thing was just a symptom, not the core problem itself.

    The core problem is the current Gear Scaling system in Instanced PvP.

    This allows you to combine pieces of gear that on their own aren't unbalanced (there are e.g. only two pieces of Bonus Armor Gear that would be relevant in 20-29 without the Scaling, and basically none in 90-99) but do create issues when combined.

    While for example Set Bonusses are one of the most-often Hotfixxed problem pieces of Gear even within a single Tier, the silly (and out-of-place in a MMORPG) Gear Scaling currently allows you to pile up a whole bunch of set bonusses from 40-odd levels of content in 90-99, resulting in things like a de-facto 20% constant damage increase in several cases.

    Add it to the inherent inbalance of the Draenor Perks and 670 Gear in a 590 bracket, and it is only the strength of the MoP (now BattleChest) content combined by total lack of communication by Blizzard about Expansion capped characters being shoved into Twink Brackets newcomers really have no place in that keeps for the moment the bracket alive.

    In other, completely unrelated news, I recently did the EverQuest Tutorial on a non-advised server, and I saw all by all twelve other players. Funny how the old bird still seems to attract people.

    1. The amount coming in WoD really shows that the game was not ready for release. There were a lot of changes patched in that we told them needed fixing one beta over and over. Makes me wonder why we have a beta if they do not listen and do not fix anything during it. I am convinced WoD was released in a live beta form.

      They never cared about balance in low level PvP and they have said so much. The sad part is that low level PvP can sometimes be fun. Well, more so if you are on a character like a hunter or a disc priest because at low levels they tend to be OP in the right hands. But they really do not care.

      What you mention about EQ is the same reason WoW will never got anywhere. People keep saying it is dying. Never, it will get smaller in time, but as long as it is still making money they will keep it around and it will keep attracting new players.