First off, long time no post. I hope everyone that reads here has been well. Sorry for my extended absence, as it was, but I had always said that if I ever really were to quit I would write an I quit post. It does not make sense to do so. I complained here on this blog because I loved the game. If I were truly going to leave that would mean I no longer loved the game, so, why post in a blog about it.
Either way, I never really left the game. I was still playing, even if only on an extremely limited basis, but my love for the game was lost. Lost so much that while things still bothered me about the game I really did not care enough to take the time out of my day to post about it.
Now with the "where the hell have you been" out of the way, I'll get right down to my grumpy thoughts on all the current topics I can think of, in as short a way as possible, if that is even possible for me.
I won't say that there is not one factor about legion that does not scare the hell out of me in terms of game play, there are actually 3, but over all I am cautiously optimistic about it and believe it has the potential to be freaking fantastic.
Blizzard has a track record of swinging the pendulum and this expansion will no doubt be one where it is swinging in the better direction, in my opinion at least. The game started out good with the original release and got better with the burning crusade and reached its peak in wrath, where it has been swinging the pendulum ever since.
Wrath was great, cataclysm sucked so bad I still shiver at the mention of how it destroyed the old world and ripped a gigantic hole in the continuity of the game for absolutely no reason what so ever. Then we had mists which was fantastic from the get go with constant content releases and lots of stuff to do, and it was pretty alt friendly too. The end was a little blah because they left it alone to start working on, believe it or not, warlords, when the pendulum swung back it complete garbage. So much so it even got someone like me that loves to complain about thing to say, this is such garbage it is not even worth taking the time to complain about.
So if all goes according to blizzards track record, Legion should be just this side of awesome, maybe even with a bit of fantastic on top. I have some high hopes rolling into this one.
The Three Things That Worry Me:
I go into this expansion with no class to play. I've been a hunter since I started and I love being a hunter so I will level my hunter first. I will max out my hunters artifact, I will get achievements on my hunter, I will get reputations on my hunter, but I will be doing it just so I do not need to go back later to do it, as I like to complete things, if they ever fix my hunter.
As it is now the hunter is completely unplayable.
Beast Mastery has issues with pets not being able to take a hit, and as you can not do any real damage yourself the fact that your pet constantly dies to almost everything in 2 hits means you are doing no damage at all. There doesn't feel like there is enough hunter part of a beast mastery hunter, it is all about the beast, the tissue paper thin dying all the time beast. No thank you. This is supposed to be the soloing spec, the spec here pets can take raid bosses, not die to elites in 2 hits. The spec is broken from a game play perspective until the fix pets at the very least. I, maybe, could live with there being very little "huntering" to do with this spec, if at least the beast mastery part was better.
Marksman is just flat out unplayable. It is a sit and wait play style now for a class, and spec, that has always been about the rapid fire of abilities. I had to wait 45 seconds for a marking targets proc.... 45.... fucking.... seconds. And this happens all the time. And you know what there is to do between procs? Get up and go make a coffee. Add this annoying luck based proc system to the wait for things to line up system to the god awful 1.5 second global cooldown, and you just crated a borring spec. The sad part if that for leveling I think MM will be the best spec. Just don't take sidewinders, whatever do you. Sidewinders is the best DPS selection, but if you want to ever feel like a hunter should feel, you need that arcane and multi it replaces to allow you to go back to the rapid fire, or as close as you can get to raid fire with that snoozefest 1.5 second global cooldown, type of game play. Too bad not takeing sidewinders gimps your DPS so badly. It was would a good talent if it repleased either arcane or multi, but replacing both, it makes the spec unplayable. At least if you want to actually enjoy it anywhere outside of a raid that is.
And survival, what needs to be said about this. Hunters only have 2 specs now. Survival is no longer a hunter spec. Hunters are a ranged class, even by blizzards definition, survival is melee, this not a hunter spec. In all seriousness, The game did not need an more melee classes before Legion and then they added an unneeded hero melee class, and they swing a perfectly fine ranged spec to melee to add to an over crowded area where no one wants to play to begin with. They should have added more ranged specs because people want ranged. If anything Outlaw Rogues should have been moved to ranged with their pistols, and maybe Arms Warriors should have been switched to range as weapon masters with throwing stuff. It made no sense to make survival melee. I will admit I played it and I really liked it, and it is pretty easy to max out DPS with it, but with all things considered, if I really wanted to play melee, I would have done so a long time ago. I hate melee, and making my class have a melee spec did nothing to change that. So this spec is not even an option to play. Unless it becomes top DPS spec and i am forced to do so. I really dread the idea of that happening.
Add to all that, all 3 of the hunter DPS specs are near the bottom of the pack, 20% less than the top of the pack, which makes them a raid liability, to say the least.
What to play:
With all that said the first worry of mine is what to play.
As stated, hunter is not an option. Outside of the fact that early on MM will be godly as it gets all its powerful abilities before the other classes, once everyone catches up, it too will be left in the dust, but those first few weeks should be fun.
I have tried all specs, doing dungeons raids, invasions, you name it, for every class. I like demonology warlock and it is an option, I guess. I really like shaman healing and melee. Shaman melee was the only melee class I ever really got into, not sure why, but it felt nice playing it again. Rose tinted glasses a bit remembering how much I loved it maybe, but even after playing it I still liked it. It is fast paced, my preferred play style, and it doesn't have that huge gap it used it, but it is still melee, and in a very melee heavy expansion I can't see that really helping any group when they will be in desperate need for more ranged to begin with.
Over all druid looks to be the way to go. Of all the classes they seem to have gotten beaten by the removal bat the least. Balance is better than it has been in ages. Feral is still wait and burst design which I am not fond of, but it does offer very good numbers which is a nice reward for all that waiting. Druid healers are once again kings of the mobile healing ranks and with the exception of shaman on many fights, will be the best healing option. And bears, my beloved bear the mana sponge. They seem to be in a nice place even if they do need a lot more healing than all the other tanks combined, and I love love love that I actually have more buttons for defense than I used to. Add to that I am now a bear that shoots laser beams. How awesome is that.
Put it all together and think that I have been main tanking, on a druid, since BRF released. I tanked all our progression kills since then. I guess I am now a druid tank. Not sure I like it, I want to be a hunter, but blizzard does not want me too be one. So not it is not just the guilds need that will make me tank, but it is blizzard itself that will make me tank.
On the bright side, druids have the BEST artifact weapons in the game. I mean have you seen those awesome bear forms. Yeah, I think I can live with being a bear main and only a bear main for one expansion hoping they fix hunters for the next one.
This is worry #2 because once again blizzard has stopped taking their anti psychotics. They are downright delusional. They say that this will be the most alt friendly expansion ever.
Lets go over the facts.
Fact one: They said, paraphrasing of course, "This will be the most alt friendly expansion ever."
Fact two: They said, their own words paraphrased, that "it should take 3 or 6 months for an active play to max out their artifact weapon."
These two things mean two completely and different things. One says it will be alt friendly the other said it will make playing alts nearly impossible for most of the player base. Get back on your meds blizzard so you can stop taking out of both sides of your head and get things straight.
It all depends on what you consider active. I consider active to be 20 hours a week. I consider myself an active player when I am enjoying the game and 20 hours a week seems about right, in my opinion at least.
Now with that said I would say that puts me in the top 20% of the players in terms of time played each week. Maybe even top 10%, who really knows. If it is going to take me 3 to 6 months to make out one weapon, for one spec, how long do you think it will take the average player? Two years maybe?
Now how exactly is that alt friendly. I'll tell you, it is not. I expect HUGE changes to artifact progression pretty early in legions cycle, because this is most definitely the least alt friendly addition to the game ever made. 100% no doubt.
Yeap, the people at blizzard are off their meds if they think this will be the most alt friendly expansion ever. Not with artifact weapons at least. Not by a long shot.
Now to issue two with the artifact weapons. They give us our weapon so not longer are we stuck behind RNG to choose whether or not we get one. And we power it up by actually playing the game. Oh my god how I love that idea so so so much. No RNG. Being rewarded with power for actually playing the game. Awesome idea blizzard, you had me at hello.
Then as time went on we see three relic slots on our weapon. What are these for inquiring minds want to know. Real gems do not go in them, relics do. Where do we get these relics? As random drops.
Mother F-ers. So you took my one RNG to get a good weapon and turned it into three RNG occurrences now. You dirt sucking bottom feeders you. Took an awesome idea that removed the horrible design of allowing "random" to dictate what gear we have out of the game and then added triple the RNG back into it by making us have to get drops to get out item level up. You people are indeed the scum of the earth. What a bait and switch.
"We removed RNG to add more RNG."
Screw your blizzard.
But it does not end there, no, not at all. Those relics all have secondary abilities on them. So not only do you need to get three relics to level up your weapon through nothing but random luck, but now you need to get the right ones. Not just any +50 item level piece will do, you want the +50 that gives your a bonus to one of the abilities you use.
So you added more RNG to the RNG that you said you were removing from weapons drops by adding artifact weapons.
You know, I am really getting sick and tired of blizzards double talk. And from the looks of it, having lost close to 70% of its subs last expansion, it looks like many others have as well. No real wonders there.
The artifact weapons worry me. We still need weapon drops, but now 3 per weapon instead of just one, and the right three to make it even harder, and not having a leveled weapon will make playing alts, or at least getting them into pugs damn near impossible.
Great idea blizzard, poorly executed. Even before legion is released you can tell this will be the worse addition to the expansion. It will backfire just as garrisons did. People will love it at first and then hate it 6 months down the line when they worked their ass off to level up a weapon and then blizzard does some balancing and that top DPS weapon you worked your ass off for it now sitting on the bottom of the DPS charts and you need to do it all over again for another spec, or worse, another class.
Artifact weapons are DOA as an idea. They failed before they even started. Adding more RNG than we ever had before and making alts unplayable unless you quit your job.
The Third Worry:
Seriously, when I started this post I had three worries in mind and I forgot what the last one was. Perhaps it was not all that important and I was just worried about it for nothing. Maybe when I addressed the pressing matters of classes and artifact weapons option three paled in comparison.
But I guess I will leave some lesser gripes here.
Legendary items. Hate them, they will feel mandatory for any player that wants to perform well. They will be luck based and extremely rare at that. Horrible game design blizzard, there is no other word for it.
Flight. How can they make the same mistake twice in a row. You lost so many people last expansion from this stupidity, so why make the same mistake again. Flight should be included on launch. Sure, make us get an achievement for it, but it should be added on launch. I really hate you for doing this to us again blizzard. More and more I am getting sick and tired of this shit. Maybe next time I leave it will be for good.
Are you loving these or what?
I did not level many alts this expansion despite the one really good thing about warlords was the fantastic leveling of it. I just did not want to put myself in the position of feeling I "had to" maximize my garrison on yet another character. It was my decision not to level most of my 90s, I get that, but it was the garrisons that made me not want to level them. So we can share the blame on this one.
However, I have been leveling like a mad elf these last few weeks. Many of my characters that were sitting at 90 are now 100. A few that were lower are now 100, and of course one horde and one alliance demon hunter are now 100 as well.
I did a refer a friend and he and I leveled from level 1 to 100 in 4 hours. No shitting. But even more important, I will be getting my emerald hippogryph once he pays for some time. I hope he pays for some time. If he doesn't I will give him the money to pay for some time. I love hippogryphs, can't you tell?
As I am typing this I have some of my 100s, yes, I actually activated my extra account just for this and leveled all 5 characters I had on it from 85 where they left off to 100, just flying over invasion spots to get the baggie. No real reason to participate in it on a level 100 other than the gear. Invasions are for lowbies to level. There is nothing a 100 can get from them except gear. And you can not buy the gear with shards, so no reason to participate to get more shards.
Hey, I know I am doing "bad" by just hanging out there, but blame blizzard for poor design. Do not blame me for taking advantage of it.
Speaking of taking advantage of it, have to love how fast you level. Added a few more hunters to my 100 ranks, 2 more druids, another DK, and will surely have at least 3 more at 100 before it goes away, more if I stop writing this novel and get back to playing.
I am not quite sure how I like the new shard tech so far. It is a great idea to keep areas from getting crowded during rushes and to make lesser visited areas seem fuller, but there are still some bugs that need to be worked out.
The other day myself and 2 fiends were in a group together, none of us could see the other. We were in a group, but all three of us were on different shards.
If blizzard wants this to work, and I am sure they do, they need to give this a priority fix. If you are grouped with someone you should always be on the same shard as them. It really is that simple. Fix that and I think this new shard tech will be a winner.
Still really disliking it for hunting rares and stuff, but blizzard screwed that over a long time ago with this CRZ garbage that really should have never been implemented to begin with.
From what I have seen so far it has been pretty damn awesome. Sure I have seen some abilities that did not scale correctly, but that is bound to happen, lets just hope they continue to adjust them, but over all it has been great.
I did an invasion with 4 others and all 5 of us were completely different in level. No two even close, and we managed to go around together, fighting the same things, and all contributing our fair share. It was awesome.
I always said that blizzard is great at taking ideas from other games and making it their own. I liked the scaling down in FF 14 the first time I saw it some time ago and said I would love to see this in warcraft. Well, we now see a better version. Instead of scaling the player down to the lower player, we both retain our own levels and our own skills and play together.
Well done blizzard. I am really liking that we can play together, for this at least.
Makes me wonder, will this ever come for the entire world?
Maybe in WoW 2.0. Coming soon to a gaming console near you. I am sure of it. Why else gut all the specs like that have if they were not trying to port it to a console.
But it does make me wonder. Why did my hunter lose two thirds of their abilities, but most of my other classes did not lose many, if any, and some even have more buttons than before.
I think it is all one big conspiracy because hunters were so awesome. They just do not want anyone playing them any more. They were afraid if they did these class halls and left the hunters as awesome as they were they would have taken over all the other class halls and turned everyone into a hunter. The priest hunters, the druid hunters, the dk hunters, yeah yeah, that's the ticket.
Enjoy release day. Get ready for a great expansion. I am sure it is going to be one, because it has to.
Group Quest S03E13: Telling our own stories
9 hours ago