With all the guesses going around on what the new expansion will bring, be it more legion, azshara, or what have you, I have found myself being much less interested in where the story will lead us than I am on what we are going to do when we get there.
I've always liked to quest, I've always liked to follow the story, and one of the reasons I believe that wrath was the best expansion was because of the extremely well done story telling and how they tied everything together from the questing experience into the raids as one fluid story. Even when we did a side step into Ulduar, story wise it made sense. Sure there was that argent tournament blip in the story line that made little to no sense, but otherwise wrath was well told and the story is a big part of why I remember it fondly.
So it would be easy to say that the story of the next expansion is going to be important to me but when I think about it, surprisingly, it is not. I really do not care where we are going next expansion. Back to azeroth, to take the fight to the legion, to argus, to the south seas, I really do not care. I've lost all faith in blizzard to present a fantastic story, so I will settle for a decent one no matter were we go.
So with all that said, even if I would like a well written expansion, it is the game play I am placing over the story and as such my list of things I want to see have nothing to do with new story, new races new classes, new anything. What I want from the next expansion is to fix the game. To make it more playable. So here is my list, in no particular order, of what I would like to see next expansion.
Lets start at the beginning. When you hit max level you should be able to fly. Tie lore master and explorer to it if you must, that is no big deal. But as soon as I hit max level I should be able to fly. I should never have to wait for months and months to do something that is a staple part of the game, no thank you.
Oh, and if they are going to tie an achievement to it, it must be account wide. I am not doing all the quests on all my alts, no thank you. And this is coming from someone that loves to quest and I am not going to do it, so I am sure most others wouldn't want to either.
This is going to be long, hold on to your hats. Valor gear needs to return. Call it valor points, valor badges or even valor jellybeans for all I care, but some sort of currency for gear that helps make content repeatable is required.
How many of you did the dungeons for your legendary and / or achievements and basically never went back to do them again unless you were helping someone else out? ~raises hand~
Dungeons have always been a far bit of content, except for this expansion. The reason for that is that before there was a reason to keep running them, valor and the badges that came before them. Now there is no reason to keep running them. Make no mistake about it, if it were not for some sort of points you received from them, dungeons wear out their welcome within a couple of weeks, at best, after hitting max level. Points you can collect to buy better gear is what kept them so popular and kept people doing them. Valor helped keep people busy, lack of valor helps keep people bored.
I suggest using some sort of PvP type system when it comes to what you can buy where you need to do X to buy Y. Something along the lines of if you kill 20 raid finder bosses you unlock the normal mode raid gear for sale, if you kill 20 normal raid bosses you unlock heroic raid gear and if you kill 20 heroic raid bosses you unlock mythic raid gear.
A system like this works on the simple basis of people can always see a substantial reward at the end of the journey. If I am raiding heroic normally, having me kill heroic bosses to unlock buying heroic gear does not seem like a bonus, "woohoo I opened up the ability to buy something I can get for free from what I am already doing every week", not really a compelling reward. You will get the heroic gear eventually, in theory, if you are raiding heroic. Yet offering that person mythic keeps them playing, keeps them collecting points, keeps them seeing that substantial reward at the end of the line. And if they use the old pricing system that means someone can only get one new piece every 2 or 3 weeks anyway, so it is not like someone is going to gear up super quickly this way, it keeps them active, it keeps them logging in, and it keeps them playing. If you only offer rewards equal to what you are currently doing the motivation, while it might still be there, is not as much as offering you something better would.
In the end, valor is a great motivator. It keeps people logging in, it keeps people capping, it keeps people playing and most importantly for blizzard, it keeps people subscribed. They stay subscribed longer because it takes them longer to get everything they want, and offering people gear in a higher difficulty means that most definitely the only way people will get it is by logging in each week and capping, which means more weeks they are paid subscribers.
Removing valor gear, and by process removing the desire to keep logging in, was a huge mistake in my opinion. I am not sure why they did it and I really wish to see it return, in this better system I just outlined, for the next expansion.
Having many options to do things is a good thing. Blizzard seems to have forgotten that with warlords. They need to add scenarios back into the game. They need to add daily hubs back into the game. They need to make them rewarding, like offering above mentioned valor, and they need to keep those options there.
Having options works to benefit everyone. If people do not feel like "I have to raid" they will enjoy raiding a lot more. Once people feel as if they have to do something it starts to lose its fun as it begin to feel more like a job. It is the number one reason for the dislike we hear often for garrisons from people, it felt like a job.
With options, and valor as their rewards, they take away the feeling of "I have to raid" to get gear and it lets people do what they want to do instead of feeling they are pigeonholed into doing one thing and one thing only.
If people like doing one thing, they can feel they are moving forward doing the one thing they like. If they are a regular raider they can cap their valor from raiding, if they like small groups, they can cap their valor from dungeons, if they do not like group content they can cap their valor from questing, if they like tight groups they can cap their valor from scenarios. You get the idea, everyone can play the way they want to play because they would have the option to do so. Now this my friends, is good design.
And it is not just valor that needs options when it comes back, it is everything. Like reputations. Have dungeons offer reputation, dailies that offer reputation, mob kills that offer reputation, etc. They do not need to make the reputation grind faster, they can keep it at whatever pace they wish to do, but by giving people various options to gain reputation people will not feel like "I have to grind a million mobs for this" like I have heard so many times this expansion.
Options are good, in every aspect of the game. I'd like to see more options in the game, but with that comes the need for more content end game, which leads us too...
Can someone explain why daily hubs were remove? Can someone explain why scenarios were removed? Now, even if you can come up with the text book blizzard response I will say you are wrong. There was no actual justification for removing content from the game.
Did everyone do them? Of course not. Did everyone like them? Of course not. But some people did and those things need to be in the game. I like to raid, always have, it is the focus of the game for me, but from the company standpoint, it should not be the entire focus of the game. The game can not be a one trick pony because, Does everyone like to raid? Of course not.
There needs to be more content end game that does not require a raid to do it. Sure I like T2 as much as the next guy but that is just a little bit of what should be a much bigger picture.
The original rares in the world that were one and done when you kill them should be like the T2 rares, once per day, not once ever. The pop up quests in different zones should be weekly, and also offer reputation like they do fitting in with the desire I mentioned in the above header. The items you find in the world that once you found them they were gone did not all need to stay gone, there could have been a few that were weekly treasures with a chance at something decent in them to make it worth going around and collecting them each week. The garrison, and then tanaan, weeklies were nice, but once you do them they are done, they could have easily just randomized them that once you did them all you still had another each week even if at that point it was now a repeat. Why does everything this expansion need to be one and done?
So much this expansion was either missing (like scenarios) or one and done content (like treasures) that you, if you were an active person, could find yourself with nothing to do really fast. They need to assure that there is content to do at max level.
Would someone go collect treasures every week? Would they continue to do the weekly quests after they finished the quest line? Would they keep killing rares they already killed? Would they do these things? Maybe, maybe not, but having them there would give people more content to do, even if they did not do it.
They could add baggies to the rares like they did with the warbringers and scouts, to be added motivation, the reputation from the pop up quests might be motivation enough, if we had some sort of resource like garrison resources again, finding those treasures each week could be motivation.
We just need more content at the end game level that isn't inside a raid. I love to raid, but I do not raid every waking second I am in game and having lots of other content would be a nice thing, at least I think so.
I would like to see the random number generator shot, multiple times, have its skin ripped from its bones and then dip it in lemon juice. Then just for fun I would set it of fire and watch it scream as it was burned alive. Then just for fun I would cast revive on it just so I could do it again. And again. And again.
Seriously, I wish more than any other wish I could wish that the reliance on RNG was reduced to a minimum next expansion. With that being done there would need to be a new, smarter system, put in place that notices when people are not lucky to try and smooth it out.
Doing a run and winning on early every bonus roll you do it just as bad as doing a dozen and winning none. Both show there is something not right here. They need to smooth out the RNG for things so they are not as randomized, or controlled randomized if you will.
I am just about as sick and tired of RNG as any person can be about any thing and I would like to see it removed if at all possible, but I know that isn't possible, so I would like to see it smoothed out.
Oh hell, I get so frustrated about RNG lately I do not even know what to say about it. I just want it gone, or at least fixed to not be so hot and cold streaky.
What do you hope to see in the next expansion?