Wednesday, June 10, 2015

One Happy Elf

There has not been much that blizzard has done in the recent past that has brought a smile to my face in real life but reading today that flying will return and will be in warlords has done just that.  I am smiling as I write this and I am sure there are some out there that are smiling as they read this.

It looks like they went the path I and many others have suggested since they first mentioned the idea of no flight.  Just link it to loremaster.  Once you have done all that is required for loremaster you have experienced the content on the ground that they were so pushing us to do.  As such we should be allowed to take to the air, at least that is how I always saw it.

Logic seems to have won out for once and I am amazingly happy because of it.  It will be more than loremaster that is needed however, but that is not an issue really.  They want you do have done all the daily apexis quest hubs at least once for the securing draenor achievement which sounds reasonable to me.  They also want you to have the achievement for finding 100 treasures in the world, which also seems very reasonable.  Heck, even if they asked for the find 200 treasure achievement I still would have thought it was reasonable.  Another requirement they ask for also makes absolute perfect sense, that you explore all the zones in their entirety as well while still grounded, no problem there either for me.

The last part is that you need to earn revered with all three of the new factions being added in 6.2, which I intended to do anyway, so I see no problem with that either.

As it turns out the best news of this whole thing is that it will be account wide.  So once you do it on one character all your characters can fly on draenor from the moment they arrive, yes, even as a level 90.  How freaking awesome is that?  Not only did they do the right thing allowing it to be account wide, but they went further, more than anyone asked for, and said we can fly from 90 on.

Way to compromise blizzard, I can honestly say this is one very happy elf right now.

But one note for people, this will not be part of 6.2, it will be later in 6.2.x, whatever that may be.  But at least we know it is coming and that is enough to bring a smile to my face.

Thank you blizzard.  The game needed this.


  1. I'm smiling with you. I really enjoyed going to my account and resubscribing and I like the method of obtaining flight rather than buying it. A good Wednesday for me.

    1. I am guessing there had to be a fair deal of people like yourself that unsubbed with flight as the reason that made for this quick turnaround.

      We all owe you a thank you.

  2. It is interesting to note that as soon as the announcement was made, I couldn't wait to log on and start knocking out some of those achieves. After months of not caring much at all about the game, suddenly I am completely energized about it.

    All I needed was a reason to be out in the world, something to work towards. I am finding the game fun again.

    1. You are not the only one, my guild was a hive of activity for the first time in a long time it seemed. People were logging in to finish lore master, to find treasures, or just to check where they were on the achievements needed.

      Blizzard really needed this. As much as the anti-flying crowd would love to say they are the majority, real actual people and their actions disagree. People wanted flying.

  3. With flying being gated behind apexis dailies, treasure hunting and loremaster achieves, it's a really shitty compromise from Blizz. I have neither the time not the patience for breaking down "Basement Gates" to get content.

    WoW used to be fun, but it seems that "Basements of Draenor" is the new standard.

    I think my sub'll stay shut and I'll spend my money elsewhere.

    1. I don't get it. Is this a reference that only people, including thegrumpyelf, who live in their mother's basements have enough time to do this stuff?

    2. No. No offence intended, it's just a reference that I have no time for mega-grinds as they burn me out really fast.

      If I'm going to play I want to be able to have a path that is equitable for me, not one that is only accessible by the hardcore and fanatics.

      A voyage to burnout city is about as much fun as pile surgery.

    3. Also, I wanted flying to avoid groundpounding through boring content.

      If I have to do that content in order to get flying then I'm quite content to play another game instead.

      My sub expired months ago although I still check this blog as a good source of information and interesting opinions.

    4. This is pretty much my view as well. This is Blizz making us jump through hoops to spite us for forcing them to bring back flight. Its a fantastic PR move. They incentivize players to come back and grind EVERYTHING to get flight, while also coming off like the good guys and without committing to flight for the next xpac. The fundamental issues are still there, I will not be resubbing when this months sub ends.

    5. @Speedy

      Thinking of the other option, no flight, I think it is a more than fair compromise. I can agree making us get the reputations seems like a little much, but I see nothing wrong with tying it to loremaster, treasure finding and exploration. Because if you did the quests, explored the world and found the treasures, their entire argument for the reason to keep you grounded it moot. You already did everything on the ground, there is no reason otherwise to stay there.

      The only thing I could see that might count as a mega grind is the new reputations. Otherwise the rest of the stuff should have been done for months already.


      Hey now, I don't live in my mothers basement, I moved out the second I hit 18, which was like a million years ago, but still. :P

      @Shaman and Hunter

      Which part, outside of the reputations coming, do you see as a grind. Seriously, I do wonder. Looked at my achievements last night and loremaster, exploring and 200 treasures achievement were all dated 11/1314, which as I recall, is the day the expansion came out. So I got every single one of those while leveling my first character to 100. Not exactly a grind if you ask me. Surely something you could do on one lazy sunday if you have not done them already.

      The securing draenor one seems like the only one that would bother me if I did not already have it because you have to wait on RNG to get all the quests done. It is possible you could go a month and never see one of the ones you need. Now THAT is horrible.

      And yes, the reputations in 6.2 is pushing it a little too far, maybe, but everything else I do not see as a grind personally, just these maybe.

    6. Aha! I know your age now, a million eighteen :)

    7. Ssshhhh... don't tell.

      But I look darn good for someone over a million, don't I?

  4. I'm not sure I just feel numb still, I don't know if it's too little to late for me.

    1. I heard that sentiment a lot last night on voice chat. A few people are still leaving the game as soon as their time ends. Their idea was, nice try blizzard, but you already lost me.

  5. I sometimes think that there's a Dev at blizzard that reads the Grumpy Elf and probably goes to the meetings at HQ and says things like "He's at it again. He's never going to shut up about this, we really ought to rethink this one". And then magically things change....

    1. I wish, sometimes. I've had my fair share of bad ideas too and I hate when they copy those.

      The more difficulties for raids, yeah, my idea I posted and it came to life a little over a year later. Sorry, it was a bad idea.

      All kidding aside, I do think sometimes someone there does read my blog. Because it is uncanny how often I suggest something in a post with it all thought out and a little while later, bam, it is in game.

      Maybe I am just a good guesser?

  6. Happy about WoD. Will be content when they officially announce this will be the norm not just for future expansions, but immediately upon reaching max level and meeting exploration requirements. If I have to wait for the final patch of an expansion in the future as well, I see this as only the tiniest step forward.

    1. I hope in future expansions they do not wait so long. Just tie it to loremaster and exploration, maybe even dungeon master so you do all dungeons, and be done with it. None of this making us wait so long.

      I do like this "earn" it approach better than the buy it approach that it had been before. 2K gold in this raining gold expansion means nothing, at least now it feels like we are really earning flight.

    2. I'm totally fine with the "earn it." I'd have left off the reputations this time, but I think that was Blizzard blowing a bit of a raspberry. I have no problem with any of the mini-gates going forward. I just want them to be in at launch and achievable immediately upon reaching max level. If they do that, this is a non-issue. If they delay in any way, shape, or form, this is a short-term hollow victory.

      Apparently, I'm a grumpy worgen.

    3. The think the apexis dailies and reputations are their way of giving in but still playing it off as they did not give in. Slipping us the finger so to speak. But as it is, just to have flying back, I am fine with that for now.

      Nothing wrong with being grumpy, it just means you care enough to complain. If things didn't matter to us, we not be grumpy about them. ;)

  7. Anon, Grumpy's former Guild Leader:

    It is not what I wanted. Nope, not even close, but it will have to do. Until this point, I was going to go the route of a time card for an account that I wanted to play and let the sub go bye bye. I guess now I won't do that as the only thing reasonable about Blizzard's allowance of flight is the fact that it is a do once and done for all 90+ characters there after. That makes it tolerable, but it still isn't what I wanted.

    And yea, that list of things to get done seemed awful long to me, but as I only have to get through it once, I am guessing I will be back to playing my paladin a lot more as he is the one furthest along in the progression chain they laid out.

    But it is not flight at 100 on a payment of a fee which is what I was truly hoping for as a compromise, and it damn sure is not any thing close at all to flight from 60+ with no interruptions which is what I want. The developers can and should design their questing for flight from that level on, but that would seem to be beyond their current teams capabilities.

    But it is a bone to stop the manic slavering attack dogs that have become common place on the MMO-C and Blizzard forums. Is it by itself enough of a bone? I really doubt it is, but time will tell.

    The next patch is likely set in stone more or less, by now. Going forward from there, how Blizzard attempts to answer the problems of guided adventuring as opposed to a more sandbox approach, how they handle PvP content, how they make an effort to explain decisions in a forthright manner with no double-speak; those are the things that are going to matter long term. Basically they blew a lot of trust on this flight debacle. For many players that was the beginning of the end of the addictive play style that financed Blizzard's rise to the pinnacle that it held. This is a start on trying to regain trust but it is only the first baby step.

    1. I think they went above and beyond what people asked for allowing it to be used at 90. Account wide was great, even if it was level 100 only account wide it was great, but 90? Wow, that was unexpected.

      I think they did that to make a big splash, they had to do something after they screwed this decision up so badly to begin with.

      I would love to know how they came to the idea to remove flight in the first place and I am so very glad it exploded and blew up in their faces. It might sound mean, but I hope someone gets fired over this.

  8. I have completed everything I can for now, just need the rep.

    1. Same for me. Most were done on the day the expansion came out like loremaster and 200 treasures, but securing draenor took longer. Don't remember which one it was but one of the quests took over 6 weeks before I saw it.

  9. It's probably accepted as a fact that in the end Blizz does everything to make money. Considering the short amount of time between the original announcement of "no flying at all" and "you get flying after a loooong grind" one can only come to one conclusion - the impact had to be huge.

    Will be interesting to see how many subs WoW has now...

    And it is a stopgap at best - with the question looming - will they prevent flying between 7.0 and 7.3?

    Rauxis, chosen of CAT

    1. I think they're going to be very public in 7.x about a super-grind to unlock flight, groundpounding through reams of yawn in order to achieve it.

      Locking things behind "Basement Gates" will just alienate the more casual sections of the community.

      Normally I wouldn't care that much tbh as I'm more of an altaholic than an "epeen achiever", although I like to collect pets and explore at my own pace. But this expansions shady moves by Blizz, removing flying for "immersion" (less work in the game needed to make dev costs cheaper) really sucked and left me deeply suspicious.

      Blizzard used to be visionaries, breaking new ground in entertainment. Now they're just suits peddling snake oil. A sad day

    2. The time from "there will be no flying now or in future expansions" to "we are adding flying back" could cause whiplash.

      I can only guess that the number of people that unsubbed with the reason being flight was so HUGE they could just not just ignore it any longer.

      If I had to guess the reason this was done is because they are trying to combat FF14. Last I heard blizzard was at 7.1M and dropping and FF14 was at 4M and rising. If FF14 came out with their expansion on the 23rd, which on the rise, and blizzard did nothing, while on the fall, it is possible that blizzard would be the #2 MMORPG on the market for the first time in 10 years.

      So make no mistake, this was about saving their collective butts from the biggest failure in the history of the company. To go from 10M subs and 4 times the next highest, to being the #2 in a matter of 6 months.


      Yes, this change was spurred on by money.


      As long as they are honest they will be fine. They could say, before 7.0 goes on pre order, there will be no flight in 7.0. Then people know before hand and if they buy it they are accepting that fact.

      What bit them in the butt this time around was they kept lying saying they were adding it later and then just changed their mind and said screw it, we are never adding it. That is what blew up in their faces.

      Long grind or no flight. As long as they announce it BEFORE people buy it, then it is perfectly fine in my opinion. But they can not keep lying to people and expect them not to get mad.

  10. I think it's ok, I was happy when I read the announcement. I mean not flying makes no sense once you do all the exploring and terrain related quests. Not sure how long the reps will take though, I'm pretty bad at them haha. I only have a couple of alts left that aren't max level, but I am still happy about it being account-wide.

    1. I agree, it makes no sense to keep us on the ground once we did everything they would want us to be on the ground for. I am glad blizzard finally realized that themselves.

      Being flying is not being added in 6.2 but later on, we can get anywhere from one to three months after, we should have more than ample time to get to exalted, never the less revered with all of them.

      I know my main will have them all exalted pretty quickly. If I can grind for rep, and I can, I usually knock that stuff out rather quickly.

  11. I'm happy as I didn't actually want to quit WoW, but i'm sorta wary, like i still feel a lack of trust toward Blizzard. Like what about the next expansion?
    It's also been interesting reading your thoughts on things. You seem to have the most reasonable opinions, or perhaps it's just that i agree with you ore often than not.

    1. I am with you there. I still love the game but with so many "fun" things being removed it almost felt as if I was going to have to quit.

      I even had a discussion with the guild master that I was looking for a raid leader replacement so I had a back up if and when I quit.

      I was not going to quit because of flying, but having flying might be enough to keep me playing a little longer. Still many issues with warlords however.

      I think it is because you agree with them. I'd like to think I try to be reasonable, but I know my opinions are most definitely tainted at least in part by my own desires.

  12. Just realized: one of the apexis dailies (The Pit) you have to do is group content and doesn't seem to pop often.

    Way to go Blizz!

    Are Blizz considering changing their name to "Basements'R'Us"?

    This is beginning to stink of "Special Snowflake" bullsh*t.

    Forget it.

    Other games out there. I still play SWTOR, occasionally EVE Online and Rifts.

    Basements of Paymore really is a pile of crap. What for the next expansion? Gate flying behind Mythic raid achieves? I wouldn't put it past them tbh.

    1. They are randomized which sucks. I did them as soon as able and did not get that achievement for about 6 weeks because one never spawned. The pit, at that time, was the daily almost every single day. I remember doing it 8 days in a row at one point.

      As far as group content, do not worry about it. If you are a hunter like me, or a tank class, they were easily soloable even as a fresh 100. At current gear levels, even LFR only gear levels, I think most if not all classes can solo it. And worst case, join a group with the group finder. I am sure you will see a lot of people doing them now.

      I think you are misusing your expressions. Special snowflake means something harder to get that people do not want made easy so others get them. There is nothing hard about this achievement for flying, so it can not be a case of special snowflakes. Everyone can do it and most likely do it easily. The only real annoyance is the securing draenor and waiting for the right quests you need to spawn. I would like to see that one removed, even if I have it already, because I do not support any type of game play based on RNG and that is exactly what that achievement is based on.

      Go for FF14, it is a growing game unlike warcraft, and it is adding flying on the 23rd and not in the middle of a fight to remove it.

      I've played a lot of other games and of them FF14 really does take the cake. Right now if I were going to leave wow that is where I would end up, and still might. This expansion, even with them adding flight back, is still really lacking in content.

    2. "Special Snowflake" is a matter of perspective rather than a line in the sand.

      It's something I do not have the time or patience to do, therefore it's "Special Snowflake" stuff, stuck behind a "Basement Gate".

      As it stands I've been playing since vanilla, got heartily sick of grinds during vanilla and TBC and got burnt out several times.

      This is like Blizzard stealing everyones lollipops, then after the outcry saying "you can have them back if you'll stick a red hot poker where the sun don't shine, kk?"

      Blizzard have developed a degree of arrogance and contempt for their customers that is very sad to see, a kind of "stfu scrubb, we know what's really fun, just give me the money and go away so I can suck up to the Basement Cavalry".

      FF14 was ok but I simply cannot make the connection to it that I need to be able to sub. SWTOR was tolerable, I play EVE purely for station trading and the occasional mission fest.

      For me, Wrath was the pinnacle of WoW. Our guild raided regularly for the first time, Wintergrasp rocked, it was great. We didn't have to go hardcore or have grindfests in order to have fun.

      Now fun is reserved for Blizzards special chosen ones. It's like going into a restaurant where the favoured few get steak, the rest get served a plate of dog sh*t and told "just pretend it's steak, stfu and pay me lots".

      Longer post than I expected there, but that's it basically. I still keep in touch with what's happening in wow and read the most thoughtful and inspiring sites and blogs but playing is something I can't bring myself to do anymore.

      *waves his hand* This is not the WoW you're looking for... Move along...

    3. Those grinds were true grinds. That is why I wonder how you can call anything here a grind. There is nothing grind like in anything they asked for the meta outside of reputations and even those you could just go to your local auction house, but 21 medallions, and be done with it. No grind required.

      Special snowflake is not a matter or perspective. It has an actual meaning. It is when someone does not like someone else having something they have, so they can remain a special snowflake. It has no bearing on this.

      Now if you wanted to tie flying to killing the mythic end boss only, then you could complain it was a special snowflake situation. Not this. All these achievements anyone that has been playing since launch already has them, or should already have them.

      I agree, wrath was the perfect balance in the game. It was when the game was in its best state between ease and effort. They have gone down hill since then, I agree.

      As for "fun" being reserved for the special chosen ones, I would like to know who they are because it doesn't seem to be you, it sure as hell is not me, and it seems everywhere I read it is not most other people from the most casual of casual to the most hard core of them all. There has been little to no fun for anyone this expansion. I think adding flying back is the first fun thing that they did today.

      This expansion really killed the game for a great many players. And even flying being brought back is not enough to save it, in my opinion.

    4. Grind now is not as bad as it was in vanilla if you ignore the groundpounding needed to get anywhere and the dull monotony of "pew pew, loot, pew pew, loot".

      I was using the snowflake metaphor subjectively rather than objectively so i'll hold my hands up to that over our varied definitions.

      Fun though...

      What is your idea of fun in WoW?

      I liked Wrath raiding, not too hard and let us have a good chat on TS with the crew while playing.

      Wintergrasp... could get rewards (gear and looms) from playing at a reasonable rate without a mindless grind of weeks to make any progress.

      Heroic 5-mans... Likewise. Could get gear upgrades and improve my pally healing technique for the raiding.

      The Argent Crusade dailies... Not keen as I hate dailies but I did it anyway in between heroics.

      PvP... I loved AV since vanilla, played it until the end of Wrath where Cata just turned WoW into a steaming pile of crap.

      The problem I see is that they seem to be trying to recycle redundant lore and cheesing new lore for cheap ideas.

      There is nothing that is inspiring about the new lore they make. Wrath was the last "Great Lore!!" expansion for me, and they wrote the lore into Wrath perfectly.

      Cata, Mop and WoD have cheesed lore that is being haphazardly slapped onto "rinse and repeat" content.

      If I see this in a series of novels (I'm a fanatical fantasy reader) then I'll bin the book and switch to a new author. Blizz are doing it here. Cheesing cheap lore. They need new progress in the story as it's been matching on the spot without any progress for far too long.

      A New World (Argus? Or a warzone world in the borders of The Twisting Nether where Alliance and Horde clash directly with the vanguard of The Burning Legion?)

      Multiple paths to progression, not treadmill grinds but grinds with regular progress and bonuses, like VP rewards and sets. Regular new 5-mans and a daily hub for players who like them all integrated with a flexible path with regular rewards.

      Thinking out loud what I'd like to see and what I liked in the past there. What do you hunger for in WoW?

    5. I too thought wrath was fun. It worked on many levels. Had some ease to it and some difficulty to it if you wanted that. It had great story telling that kept me interested and involved and the areas where not only beautiful but worth being out in.

      Fun is something that is subjective for sure. I do not find PvP fun most of the time but some people love it. I love to quest but some people hate it. It is a "to each their own" sort of thing. But with this expansion it seems no one is happy. Sure some part of the player base will always feel as if they are being left out, but this expansion seems to make everyone feel as if they are left out.

      And you mention VP at the end here and I can say if I were to quit, it would have never been over this flying issue. It would be over the VP issue. Removing VP is the worst thing they ever did to the game in my opinion. Not as over all damaging as it seems the flying issue became, but to me, I miss VP.

      I would like for blizzard to stop removing content. Like removing the heirlooms off garrosh. Why? I would love to go back and do kills to try to collect them just like I ran sunwell a million times for my bow. And the cape, why remove it. I did not do it on a few character on purpose with the sole intention of going back to do it on them when I am bored. Why remove raids like ZA nd ZG to make 5 mans, why remove scenarios when they had a place in the game. I would stop removing content.

      Then they need to adapt the "if its not broke, don't fix it" mentality. VP was not broke, why did they try to fix it with apexis crystals? Flex was super easy, the new normal is harder than that and not flex as much as they say it is because you can not bring lesser players. My guild used to be a heroic guild, #3 on server, now we can not be because it is 20 players only as mythic, now why even raid? It if ain't broke, don't fix it.

    6. Well I'm finished with WoW for good now.

      I haven't played in months and I'm not doing some shitty crapexis grind in order to get flying.

      It's like Blizz broke our legs and said "crawl over this broken glass and we'll give you some kneecaps!! You'll love it, honest!!"

      A cheap stunt to try to keep players subbed for the Q2 financials by dangling a pretty pathetic carrot gated behind the most dull and shitty content.

      Out of curiosity I wonder how many subs are lost now from this? With FF14 up to 4m then maybe WoW could be toppled from it's throne this year. I would love that.

      Anyway, I'm finished with MMOs now. Back to sims and strategy games for me. Time to fire up Steam and go through the library looking for cheap goodies this weekend.

    7. To each their own.

      I agree I would rather just pay a little gold for it, but this is a very fair compromise when you consider the other option was no flying at all.

      Not to mention, there is absoltely nothing needed for any of the achievement other then a time investment. It is not skill based, so good or bad everyone can get it. It is not price based, so poor or rich everyone can get it. And it is account wide which means you only need to do it once instead of how flying was before where each and every character needs to pay for it.

      FF14 would have (I am sure of it) passed warcraft in active subs if it were not for this flying reversal and releasing 6.2 earlier than intended. If warcraft did not do that, then on the 23rd FF14 would have easily passed them.

    8. Seedy,
      If you are into Fantasy/SciFi/Strategy Games Endless Legend is available on steam. Its basically a 4x with asymmetric game play elements.

      I can't recommend it highly enough, it has a great visuals and sound track and would be a contender for best 4x if Civ 5 was not so well balanced and paced.

    9. Sounds inter sting Rick, I might take a look at that as well.

  13. They copied your idea Grumpy! I think this is a good solution. If you've been playing the expansion then chances are all you need is the final reps for this patch's content. If you've seen all the content you should be able to fly. The fact that the achievements are account wide is actually better than usual. I never had a problem with the concept of having to go through the content once before you unlocked flying. That's how most of the expansions have been in one form or another with the exception of Cata. They've already said this is the plan for the future too that you experience the content once and then flying is unlocked, so I really don't see what everyone is still complaining about. You have to play the game in order to unlock flying in the game.... if you don't want to play the game anyways then why are you complaining about it?

    1. The loremaster idea just makes the most sense. Their best argument for keeping us keeping us grounded was they wanted us to see the content as intended. Once we did all the quests we did all the content as intended. They added treasures and exploring too, which makes sense. The other two things are just them pushing it a little, but I am okay with it. It makes sense this way.

      It is amazing that people are still complaining even after blizzard compromised, but some people are never happy. They do not want to have a give and take, they just want to take. Guess that goes back to my "selfish" post the other day.

  14. I’m still pretty mixed on this.

    On a very simple point, I’m happy to see flight will be coming back. And most of the achievements to get this are done, nearly done, or probably doable for me (I hate the terrible jumping puzzles with a burning passion).

    There are still many things that bother me about this compromise however.

    1) They are still telling players how they must play. While I personally like doing the quests and getting loremaster, there are many players that don’t care about the story or are happy to play their way. PvPers, pet battlers, pacifist players, etc. While the game can’t cater to everyone, these people in particular are going to have to do parts of the game they don’t like to use this convenience. Even though I have occasionally done PvP, I despise when it is mandatory for some PvE achievement (Long Strange Trip or the Legendary Cape). Telling PvP players that they have to do this grindy PvE content to use the flight system is kind of crappy, and it doesn’t really even impact me. And since flight in world PvP can actually be important, that seems like a bad deal.

    2) Optional things becoming pseudo-mandatory. Achievements were just neat things in the beginning and have continued to become more mandatory. Now obviously they aren’t truly required to play the game, but if you want to experience parts of the game, they are. Perhaps the bigger more recent one that really bothers me is how the garrison was not required. However, if you want flying in Draenor, you need to get to Tanaan, which as I understand it, requires that you have the shipyard in your garrison, which can only be built in a level 3 garrison. I have my level 3 garrison and the money to build the shipyard when it comes, but I’m really tired of their constant changing of things like this.

    3) Say one thing but do many other things that undercut it. This may feel like I’m drifting a bit but I’m rolling (/Bluto). I am a slow player. I can level quickly (though nowhere near your speed) when needed but overall, I’m in no rush to do any of the content. That would seem to be ideal for Blizzard, however they often do things that makes it so I have to rush. The most recent example, and one that really made me angry, was the 10th anniversary raid. By making it open to only 100’s with enough gear, it made me rush to 100 on one of my characters, not really pay attention to or enjoy the content at my pace, so that I could get into the raid before they disappeared. Between my limited play time and my just general desire to play at my speed, I wasn’t going to be able to get to that raid and try for the mount and pet and such if I didn’t blow through and skip content. The literal thing they say they don’t want people to do. This is to say nothing of the many XP bonus options and the nerfing of XP needed for leveling in old content. I’m not saying I don’t understand the need for it; it just drives me crazy when they put in numerous ways of skipping and minimizing content and then seem befuddled by people complaining about content.

    4) I don’t feel like they really understand what is wrong or why this really happened. To me, this feels like someone saying “I know you are unhappy and I’ll give I on this, but I’m not going to admit I did anything wrong or try to change my behavior in the future”. I could be being unfair but that is how I feel about Blizzard at this point.

    5) Which brings me to another point. I just don’t really feel like they care about their players. It’s a business, I know, but most companies at least now how to fake it if not genuinely care. It’s been said main times but they’ve really broken the trust of a lot of people myself included.

    The one saving grace on this, and why I’m likely to try to do this, is that it is account wide as are most of the individual achievements for the meta achievement. That was a good choice but it feels like it is barely enough.

    1. Good news, you can reach 100 without ever jumping once. There are close to 300 (that I noticed) treasures and well more than 100 of them require nothing more than picking it up.

      1) I agree, I love to quest too. Have done every quest in the game and if I ever see a quest marker I jump at it because it needs to get done. The date on my draenor loremaster achievement is the date the expansion was released. Yes, I love questing that much. But I do understand others really hate it. So to them it is just a time sink. But it is a fair one I believe because blizzard said they did not want flying because they wanted people to experience the content as intended and this is the only way they can assure that the people did experience all the content as they intended. So they gave in to flyers, but they still held their ground that they want everyone to see things as intended and I can respect that.

      2) I agree. I mentioned on beta I thought it was a bad thing to make achievement mandatory. Linking garrison building patterns behind achievement was the beginning of the end. It will just keep getting worse from now on.

      3) I agree on the 10th anniversary, they should have made it more all inclusive. Seems kind of wrong to have had it for 100s only. Maybe have one thing that is for 100s only, but not everything really.

      4) That is exactly what they did, they gave in but refuse to admit they were wrong. This entire expansion has been about how bad they are at judging what their players want. Because from what it seems, most players do not want anything this expansion has to offer.

  15. Last comment, and apologies for the ramble, but I wonder if they’ve broken their fan base pretty significantly. While there were some fair-minded and reasonable anti-flight people, most of what I saw was more toxic than the usual WoW community, especially after they had felt they had “won”. Many were quite smug and seemed to enjoy the pro-flight crowd being unhappy. With this turn around they are angry and some of the worst pro-flight people are gloating. It doesn’t feel as big but they are still there and are equally vicious (and I may be biased). WoW has never had a great community (pockets of awesome in an ocean of scum and villainy) but I wonder if this will make it worse.

    Unrelated – Thanks for keeping up the blog Grumpy. I’ve been reading you and a few of the people on your side bar (one even commented on this post) and have enjoyed it enough that I’ve been considering starting my own blog. I’m not sure I’m committed enough for it yet, but I’m kicking around the idea and it is mainly due to you and the other bloggers producing good content.

    1. Ramble away, I am rather long winded myself so I can never blame someone for being passionate enough to do the same.

      I do think that they have damaged their relationship with their customers a lot this expansion. It might even be beyond repair for many. The lack of content, the lies, the changes that no one wanted, the not listening to people after they ask for their input. They really put off a lot of their players.

      If you decide to do so let me know and I can link you. I started this for me and me only to rant or complain or what have you without ever having any intention of people actually reading it, never the less commenting on it. I like to write and this is what I did to please that desire to write. One word of advice if you do start. Write for yourself don't write for everyone else. As long as you do that it stays fun and doesn't become a "job".

    2. I think I've seen you give that advice before and not only it is good, but it was my plan. It's just those last few steps of actually doing it.

      I know you always do, but thanks for slogging through my comment. One of the things I enjoy about your blog is you seem to make a concerted effort to read and reply to as many, if not all, of your reader. Big kudos to you.

    3. Only write when you want to write. If you write just to make content, you will burn yourself out.

      I try to read them all, but sometimes can't based on time. Interaction matters to me.

  16. Explore Draenor: completed 12/19/14 (I never went to most of Frostfire until later on so I didn't get this the first week...)
    Grand Treasure Hunter: completed 12/14/14 (that's the 200 achiev, so only need half that) I had the 50 achiev on 11/15/14.
    Loremaster of Draenor: completed 11/22/14
    Securing Draenor: Completed 2/07/15

    I agree that Securing Draenor is too RNG based and only works because many people already have it by now. In the future, I hope they don't pick things like that.

    Getting the Tanaan reps to Revered won't take very long, but that shouldn't be there or it should unlock flying in Tanaan. We should be able to fly elsewhere with just the exploration and quest achievs.

    To appease us even further, we get a Rylak mount for unlocking flying.

    Total 180 by Blizzard.

    I'm concerned about the wait for 6.2.x though.

    I wish things were more objective based though. For example in Draenor, we could unlock flying after establishing our outposts in all the zones. Before that, we're trying to "lay low" while we setup our camps, so we can't be flying through the skies yet. Put some story/lore behind it.

    1. Not only was it a 180 but it has to be the fastest 180 in the history of the company. I can only imagine how many people unsubbed saying flight was the reason to make them make such a drastic change like this so quickly. It has to be substantial.

      I too am concerned about the wait for 6.2.x as well. I personally do not care about 6.2, it offers nothing interesting. I want 6.2.x.

      I too have all the achievement done already and have for a long time. I would think most of the people that have been playing from launch do. If they don't, then I am sure they are not the ones saying there was no content, because those achievement were the only actual content in the game. lol

    2. I just said this over on Fiannor's blog but I wonder if the timing of the announcement has to do with June being the end of the quarter. People have 2 1/2 weeks to resub in June and perhaps that would hide the quarterly drop that might have been coming.

  17. a) to everyone of the mind "no flying in Draenor" is a minor item - look at the size of every forum thread on the subject including this one!
    b) I'm 100% certain they did a 180 degree turnaround after experiencing a wave of canceled subs in the past 2 or 3 weeks.
    c) I'm also certain all they are doing now is "damage control" and "trying not to loose too much face". They have told everyone in the past 1.5 years (since the first announcement about no-flying in Draenor) that everything will be fine. Admitting now they are wrong might make them look like idiots to the player base - but that is irrelevant. People like the forums CMs are PAID to take the heat. Far more important is the internal fallout. Whoever sold this idea to management will take a career hit (with a very very big hammer).
    d) delaying it to a minor 6.2.x patch is IMHO a smart move, because it gives the 80% player group a decent chance to knock everything out without grinding themselves to death.
    e) funny in my opinion - why did they not implement this scheme in the first place? Grumpy said it a hundred times (well, ok, only a dozen times) - once you've experienced the content there is not reason without flying to ever go back.
    f) The main problem with flying as I see it - it is not a CHOICE because there is no drawback. You should have a reason to stay on ground, not be forced into it. A simple example might be: "The earth is strong and supports you. For every minute you are in touch with ground you gain +1% to your main stats up to a maximum of 25%."

    Rauxis, chosen of CAT

    1. I get a kick out of people that say no flying was not a minor thing. As you said, look at the feed back all over the net, even the replies to this thread in one small blog in the middle of no where. Flying is very important to a lot of people.

      There is no doubt that they had to have had substantial cancellations to cause them to change something so quickly that they seemed so sure about just a couple of weeks ago. Money talks, loudly.

      I think the delay makes sense too. I hope it is not that long however. I am guessing anywhere from 1 to 3 months. Hoping for the 1. But delaying it means people don't need to rush to get it. It would be a mad house with people rushing it. Heck, it will anyway because people like me will still want to get it done with as fast as possible.

      Your no draw back to flight is a real thing. The mistake blizzard did was making flying so fast. They should have had ground mounts go faster and flying mounts go slower but with the ease of flying. That way it would equal them out a little. You could travel really really fast on the ground or you can move in a direct route with no interruptions in the air slower. That would make it a choice. It might also keep me on the ground when I travel. But flying and faster, no choice for me, I will fly faster.

  18. securing draenor is easy. you can buy missives with garrison resources to remove the randomness. I think you could do it all in one day if you wanted to.

    I did 2 yesterday and finished off my achievement.


    1. Awesome, it does work? Someone on the PTR said it didn't. That is awesome news.

  19. I have been giving myself a few days to collect thoughts on the return of flight to WoW, and feel a little conflicted. Initially, before the release I was a harsh critic of the decision. Promises of faster-direct flight paths and ease of travel, were met by skepticism and me calling the developers “too lazy to do that kind of work”. For three expansions I had seen world travel poorly done. So I feel a fair amount of guilt in regards to flying, in Dreanor you can get to any raid in 35-40 secs just LFG the word “Mage”. I was wrong and we gained a lot of good design because the development team ended up losing flight as a crutch. I would like to see a focus on travel in the next expansion as well, with well designed flight points, easily accessed raids and hubs ect…

    That said getting flight back is clearly a win, but what I really wanted to see, was the developers learn from this. Since November 2013 they have ceaselessly flaunted their right to artistic license, and have continued to do so all the way up to this weeks announcement. How Blizz thinks restricting the means the game can be experience is a good thing, bothers me. I think it’s a mistake in general to compare video games to movies as forms of art. A camera restricts the view point, free will, environmental interaction in ways relate in no way to a video game. I think developers envy the control director’s have over their medium thinking they have an advantage in story telling. I think video games are closer to books, where the imprecision of words creates possibilities for a reader’s interpretation in the same way a games interactive nature allows players different ways to experience the story.

    No author should attempt to control thier words after they have published, those characters and stories are unique within the minds of the readers. So Blizz’s out right demands related to dreanor seems out of place.

    “We believe this strikes the right balance between ensuring ground-based content lives up to its full potential, while providing players who’ve already fully experienced Draenor’s outdoor world extra freedom to “break the rules.” This also provides a general blueprint going forward for content to come. Players will explore new and undiscovered lands from the ground, and then once they’ve fully mastered those environments—a notion that continues to evolve with each new expansion—they can take to the skies and experience the world from a new vantage point.”

    Yes, this strikes a nice balance, since it grants the ability to fly at 90 account wide. But this strangle hold on the game, and distain for community input is destructive. Also making the ground content that did not satisfy so many mandatory for flight; smacks of ignorance and pride, not humility and self-realization, that hey maybe there is room for two ways to view the world.

    All that said, it looks like this was the real reason the Lore Question session got postponed. Now the devs get something akin to a controlled press conference. They badly needed a win before speaking publicly to the player base. Too bad, they also really needed to face the questions that were asked over the last two weeks. But now I’d wager three out of four questions they answer will pertain to flying, and no one will raise and eyebrow.