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Role Playing (Games) Entertainment Games

Second World of Warcraft Expansion Launched, Conquered 386

The much-anticipated second expansion to World of Warcraft, entitled Wrath of the Lich King, launched on Thursday, introducing a new continent, raising the level cap to 80, and bringing a wealth of new items, spells, dungeons, and monsters to the popular MMO. Crowds gathered and lines formed outside stores around the world leading up to the release. Massively has put together a series of articles for players wishing to familiarize themselves with the expansion, and CVG has a piece discussing the basics as well. It didn't take long for the first person to reach level 80; a French player called "Nymh" reached the level cap on his Warlock only 27 hours after the expansion went live. Not to be outdone, a guild named "TwentyFifthNovember" managed to get at least 25 raiders to 80 and then cleared all of the current expansion raid content less than three days after the launch. Fortunately for them, the next three content patches are each expected to contain new, more difficult raids.
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Second World of Warcraft Expansion Launched, Conquered

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  • by Idimmu Xul ( 204345 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @01:50PM (#25778517) Homepage Journal

    whenever anyone else makes it to level 80, I really don't want to miss any of their important in game breakthroughs.

    Stuff that matters, indeed.

  • Addicts indeed (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Uglypug ( 1309973 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @01:59PM (#25778581)
    It's always comforting to be reminded that there are people out there with even less of a life than you.
  • Rush to completion (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Dutch Gun ( 899105 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @02:01PM (#25778593)

    I've never understood people who feel the need to rush to complete game content. After paying for a game, I like to take my time and enjoy it. I guess maybe people see it as another way of competing with each other? Or is it just obsession?

    Maybe I have a slightly different perspective than most. I'm a game developer, so I guess I'm slightly more aware than most of how much work goes into every single game. It's slightly depressing sometimes, because you've put a year or more of work into a product, and you've still only produced enough content to last a long weekend.

  • Re:Addicts indeed (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 16, 2008 @02:02PM (#25778597)

    Amen. To all you wow players: Shut that computer down and go out get some fresh air. Life is much too short to waste it on playing a bloody game.

    And this comes from someone who made quite a bit of money writing games.

  • So much for... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by NinthAgendaDotCom ( 1401899 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @02:02PM (#25778603) Homepage
    ...savoring long-awaited new content. Seems like a rather ephemeral achievement.
  • Re:Athene (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 16, 2008 @02:09PM (#25778641)

    He got banned though (completely unfairly, considering Nymh was using virtually the same method, just outside of an instance.)

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 16, 2008 @02:09PM (#25778645)

    ...and I really enjoyed BC when it launched, but not as much as I first enjoyed the launch. I thought about getting The Frozen Throne, but this kind of behavior on my server, which I'm expected to emulate in order to enjoy 80% of Blizzard's 'Content', has made me realize this generation of MMOs is not for me.

    MMO developers cite limited budgets as their reason for not being able to make "better MMOs." Blizzard, however makes approx $15 a month from each of its 10 Million players. Effectively, their revenues are higher than most MMO's entire budget, every month. The truth is, MMO publishers *cough vivendi cough* have come to realize that MMOs make the most money when they emulate casinos. A pleasant, polished atmosphere with lots of slot machines where someone is "winning" every second, and there's constant reminders of that. Who'd ever want to leave?

    So please, if you ever meet me, and I say that I don't think WoW is a "good game," please keep in mind that Jackpot machines are also "good games."

  • by wild_quinine ( 998562 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @02:16PM (#25778687) Homepage

    I've never understood people who feel the need to rush to complete game content. After paying for a game, I like to take my time and enjoy it. I guess maybe people see it as another way of competing with each other? Or is it just obsession?

    If you're this good at warcraft, lording your level above more casual plays is all you've got. You're going to want to reach the top fast!

  • by nschubach ( 922175 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @02:22PM (#25778723) Journal

    It's a sad day when maxing out your character is considered "conquering" the game.

  • by hansamurai ( 907719 ) <> on Sunday November 16, 2008 @02:27PM (#25778761) Homepage Journal

    Well, if they cleared all the new expansion content, then what is left to conquer?

  • by myrdos2 ( 989497 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @02:36PM (#25778829)
    I find the Penny Arcade comic sums up my feelings on the expansion: clicky []

    Seriously - how many areas are just the same area over and over again with different graphics? The towns and mountains and such are in different places, but by level 10 you've pretty much seen all the gameplay there is to see.

    I predict Northrend will have individual monsters slowly roaming back and forth over small areas of ground. Occasionally there will be a few monsters standing together. Virtually every quest will involve killing X of them. To step things up, you can kill difficult elite monsters while in a group. The combat will be so simple that an 8-line perl script can do it.

    When you try to imagine the game without the graphics, you realize how little gameplay there actually is. It might be feasible to make a nethack-style game that captures every element of WoW gameplay, but that would be a very dull game indeed.
  • by Lulfas ( 1140109 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @02:43PM (#25778885)
    Umm.. There's been 2 expansions. The first increased the size of the world by about 40%, this one increased the size by 25% or so (of that bigger area). There was HUGE amounts of new content. Go whine about Everquest if you want to whine about "pay for crap" extortion.
  • Re:Athene (Score:5, Insightful)

    by wild_quinine ( 998562 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @02:49PM (#25778917) Homepage

    He went into instances with friends, left group, tagged all the mobs, then let them do all the damage. since those mobs were designed to be taken down by a group, they gave lots of experience. And he got all of it. Anyone who doesn't call it cheating has a pretty conservative definition of the term.

    I know what he did, and what he did not do. He did not hack the game. He DID ask permission to play in that way, and was granted it.

    That's why it's not cheating. Call it something else - gaming the system, powerlevelling, exploiting even. But since it's not against the rules of the game, as set out in software, and it's not against the rules of the game as set out by the GMs - remember, he asked! - it's frankly not cheating by any definition, other than possibly a stupid and jealous definition.

  • by BlueCodeWarrior ( 638065 ) <> on Sunday November 16, 2008 @02:50PM (#25778933) Homepage

    Disclaimer: I used to play WoW.

    This is still interesting news to anyone that follows games. World of Warcraft is one of the most popular video games ever. I know several people who don't play video games, but they do play WoW. To hear about how some people absolutely demolished the new content is pretty cool. Blizzard spent how much time making this expansion, and then it all got run through in less than 30 hours? That's nuts.

  • Re:Addicts indeed (Score:4, Insightful)

    by gparent ( 1242548 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @02:58PM (#25778983)
    It's always comforting to be reminded that some people are stupid enough to still think playing WoW somehow prevents you from going outside and having fun with friends.
  • Re:Addicts indeed (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 16, 2008 @03:02PM (#25779005)

    Yes, I'm sure someone who spends 27 hours straight playing an online video game has plenty of time for so many other great "accomplishments".

  • by erroneus ( 253617 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @03:11PM (#25779053) Homepage

    I don't care about you... therefore you aren't anything that matters either. See how I got that twisted around?

    But you did touch on why it does matter -- it's a [sub-]cultural phenomenon. Increasingly, things that exist only in a virtual sense matters more an more. Increasingly, the virtual world and its economy has affects in this real world... at least I think it's the real world.

  • by nick_davison ( 217681 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @03:27PM (#25779169)

    If you look at the speedrun subculture, people can "complete" most classic, deeply loved, games in ridiculously short amounts of time.

    Does it devalue Doom to tens of millions of players, many of whom logged hundreds or thousands of hours in it, knowing that someone's managed a speedrun in an hour or two?

    Besides, modern MMOs are about a huge number of things interacting:

    Have they looted enough of the highest level drops that their players are now fully kitted out in the best gear available? Or did they just scrape by with enough to claim they could do it, only to get slapped down in PvP, next week, by a guild that didn't claim "completion" and is now better equipped?

    Have they collected everything they need for their crafters to make the highest end items they also had opened up to them?

    Have they gained the new mounts?

    How about PvP specific loot? Have they gained the full sets of that stuff that were put there for the huge number of players that don't consider level 80 and a few raids to be the pinacle of the game?

    And that's all before you get in to the broader culture of a game like that... mapping things out, raising interesting alts, side quests, etc.

    A junior high bully gets to claim he's the most awesomest by having no one who can beat him in a fight. Yet the kids who're on dates, getting in to bands, on the sports teams, even nerdier stuff like winning science olympiads or actually understanding their classes so they'll get great grades in highschool, a great college place and be much better off in life... they're probably not all that impressed that, yes, he got to the top on a single axis. Did he really "complete" junior high as he likes to tell himself?

  • Re:Athene (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 16, 2008 @03:29PM (#25779177)

    But who cares? As long as he's not hindering other gamers' experience, what does it matter?

  • Eventually (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Organic Brain Damage ( 863655 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @03:34PM (#25779209)
    the sun will go nova and the earth will cease to be and all human endeavor will vanish forever. Nothing lasts. Nothing is worth doing except enjoying the small bit of time we get on this planet. If you get your joy playing WoW for 27 hours, being first to level 80, good for you.
  • by Lordfly ( 590616 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @03:40PM (#25779263) Homepage Journal

    ...I just gotta say they missed most of the fun of the game.

    Granted, I have one character, a level 36 Warlock, that's taken me something like 3 months to get up to. But you know what? I'm probably having a bit more fun and getting more for my money than the people who have to powerlevel to 80 as fast as possible.

    It makes PvP harder for me (as I can't compete with people who twink their guys out with the best gear), and I generally don't go into the instances/raids (I solo most of the time, and my guild is more social than goal-driven), but I get to actually enjoy the art, the people, the economy, and the experience.

    Getting to 80 as fast as possible is like trying to ride every single ride at Cedar Point as fast and as efficiently as possible, as opposed to a group of friends who go on what they want when they want.

    Which group has more "fun"?

  • by Korin43 ( 881732 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @03:46PM (#25779299) Homepage
    Except with all the role playing removed, and everything dumbed down. The only thing entertaining about DnD is when you think of creative solutions to problems. In WoW, the spells all do something specific (create item in inventory, damage monster, heal party member..). In DnD you can choose how the spells work. Also, in DnD, things stay dead.
  • by xouumalperxe ( 815707 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @03:55PM (#25779347)

    Blizzard spent how much time making this expansion, and then it all got run through in less than 30 hours? That's nuts.

    Nobody "ran it through" in under 30 hours. What some people did was say "we beat what we consider the important bits, so we call the game beat". A good analogy would perhaps be completing the Terran campaign in Starcraft and saying "I beat the game, because what matters to me is the Terran campaign". SK/Nihilum probably skipped much of the "leveling" content, decidedly skipped most instances, and rushed straight into the raid game.

  • Re:Addicts indeed (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Trubadidudei ( 1404187 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @03:58PM (#25779361)


    The expression "life" has gotten some funny co-notations these days.
    Today, it is possible to not have a "life" actually, and being judged to "waste" it by doing something someone infected with clichés and stereotypes doesn't understand.

    I'm not really referring to the OP here, as it looks like his post is something that should have been modded "Funny", but was modded "Insightful" by people who misunderstand what he was saying. But to you who are so stuck up in your romantic ideas that you believe that what you define as "fresh air" holds some sort of magical spell that makes everything so much better and morally "correct", let me tell you something:

    Life is not short, life is not long. Life is life, and everyone, wether they never go out of their basement, or got a nobel price, are equally successful at it. In the end were all corpses, and all the memes and ideas we thought were so meaningful disappear with the rest of your consciousness.
    Now, stop looking down at people, any people, and especially wow players. By many of the ways that you think you can measure success, they are more successful then you. They socialize more then you do, albeit in a different environment, they have more of what you define as "fun" then you do, although some are more or less mentally addicted to some of the notions with the game. Your narrow minded definition of what is good and what is bad is simply wrong, and just because you don't understand that socialization is not something that disappears just because one does not only do it in what you and others paradoxically termed "Real Life", you are not in any measure generally more successful then those who do play an MMORPG. You are as little and as much meaningful as everyone else, and you are by no means justified in judging others as "wasting" what you call "Life".

    *Sigh of relief*

    Now that that is out of the way, let me say that i do not hate you, the person to which i reply. I hate the mindset of which that statement generally belongs. Although what i am saying is somewhat paradoxical as i am actually judging people when expressing my emotions about one type of judgement, i felt that this approach was best to get my feelings about that statement across.

    And for the record, i played WoW since launch, quitting a year ago. When the last of my IRL friends decided to quit i quit as well, and left an avatar to which i had devoted much time, some of the nicest people i had ever met, and an universe in which i had had a much more rewarding experience than i ever would have had if i never would have played at all. During my WoW playing period, i still went out with my friends, i did not fail at school, and i still went to and arranged parties, even though i didn't find them very fun. However I recognized that i wanted to expand my social network, and socializing "IRL" was by no means something that i was bad at.

    Please, abandon the idea that playing WoW equates to the lack of "Life", and that "life" can in fact be lacked. Throw it in a dumpster, smash it with a spade and please set it on fire, and while your at it, throw some of the ideas that that meme brings with as well, especially the idea that fresh air is and has been better then it's opposite (whatever that is).
    Such ideas just make me so angry, and forces me to post long inflammatory and self righteous posts on a comment section that would otherwise be filled with WoW speak, which is really quite embarrassing.

  • Not hard (Score:3, Insightful)

    by burris ( 122191 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @04:02PM (#25779379)

    If the game was too hard, most people would get frustrated and quit. Then Blizzard wouldn't make any money. Instead you get a regular reinforcement schedule that keeps you paying the bills. B. F. Skinner would have loved these things.

  • Re:Addicts indeed (Score:4, Insightful)

    by wbren ( 682133 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @04:17PM (#25779471) Homepage

    In my experience--based solely on the people I know that play WoW, not necessarily on the stories you read online--the likelihood of Wow at least *interfering* with your social life is pretty high. You might decide not to go out with some friends one night because you're just so close to leveling up or completing a quest. That might sound like a really minor problem, but it adds up. The probability of it interfering increasing significantly if you are a member of a raiding guild. Since raiders are the people mentioned in the blurb, I think the OP's point was valid. He didn't even seem to be criticizing all WoW players, just those who rush out to "beat" the expansion quicker than anyone else.

    Remember, there are exceptions to every rule. Some people that use cocaine do so without any noticeable negative side effects on their lives. A lot of the time, however, there are very bad, very noticeable side effects socially, physically, and financially. I know that's an over the top example, but I think the same is true of WoW. You might be an exception, and if so, that's great. But just because you continue to thrive despite playing WoW doesn't mean others are as lucky. Something to keep in mind, that's all...

  • by _Sprocket_ ( 42527 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @05:23PM (#25779893)

    Disclaimer: I used to play WoW.

    I know several people who don't play video games, but they do play WoW. ...

    To hear about how some people absolutely demolished the new content is pretty cool. Blizzard spent how much time making this expansion, and then it all got run through in less than 30 hours? That's nuts.

    Pssst. If your friends are playing WoW, they're playing a video game. Don't tell them though. It might upset some emotional balance and put them in to shock.

    Also - note that WoW is not linear. They did not go the same path as everyone else. They did not do everything that everyone else has done. Blizzard's time spent making the expansion was not wasted on 30hrs of grinding.

    That people will take knowledge gained from Beta and apply it to a streamlined race to hit a particular goal isn't all that new. Its kind of interesting. Sure. But this only impacts others trying to participate in the same race. For most people playing, it doesn't mean much beyond the trivial. After all, life itself isn't defined by the Guinness Book of World Records. And chess remains fairly popular despite the long history of chess masters also playing the game.

  • by Vexorian ( 959249 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @06:01PM (#25780157)
    It may not be stuff that matters, but it does sound like news for nerds.
  • by duckInferno ( 1275100 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @06:31PM (#25780361) Journal
    The difference is that WoW will cost you less per year than a fortnightly trip to the pub for a few drinks.

    Or an A+ game title every couple of months (good luck stretching those out that long).

    Or a monthly trip to the movies with popcorn.
  • by colmore ( 56499 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @07:14PM (#25780639) Journal

    The most popular game of all time is going to get written about. I don't care either, but I'm not bitching that the news isn't exactly tailored to my interests.

  • Re:Boredom (Score:3, Insightful)

    by drsquare ( 530038 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @07:26PM (#25780707)

    Why have you sullied this site with the worst, unfunniest web comic of all time?


  • by duckInferno ( 1275100 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @08:13PM (#25780953) Journal
    WoW has a bad rep from a very small minority of players who can't manage their lives. I'll treat the argument of whether or not this is WoW's fault, or whether any other fun activity would have done it, as out of scope... I'd like to set the record straight on a few things that may be found insightful by some.

    Myth 1. WoW is a diabolical money sink

    Untrue. At its most expensive, factoring in the initial cost and its expansions to date, WoW averages to about US$18 a month (conservative estimate). I'm not too familiar with costs in America but two trips to the movies and you're spending more. A gourmet pie a week and you're spending more. A few drinks with friends once a month and you're spending more. These activites are once-off entertainment and I highly doubt a pie a week is the extent of one's monthly entertainment bill.

    In addition, there are hundreds of servers, each servicing tens of thousands of players and all of the maintainence, hardware and bandwidth costs that come with it. There's a huge development team fixing the most trivial of bugs and developing new content every couple of months. There's a huge support team consisting of the usual helpdesk drones as well as in-game game masters (who aren't just any old gamer off the street; they're veritable WoW gurus). All of this isn't cheap. All of this isn't possible with a standard once-off $40 game. On the side, a once-off $40 game that captures my attention for more than a month is a rare thing these days.

    Myth 2. WoW is a giant grind

    While this is subjective, I have to argue against it. It is true that the first 50-60 levels of WoW are definitely repetative and while I'm sure Blizzard are aware of this, I don't think their steps to fix it are the right ones (they're just making it faster). However, once past this hurdle you are in the clear. BC raised the bar with quests that capture your interest. Wrath has redefined the bar with some extremely fun quests; they appear to have redesigned their whole philosophy on questing for the latest expansion.

    But that's quests. You can grind if you want, nothing is stopping you, but there are all sorts of things you can do -- especially with the new achievements. There are battlegrounds. There is exploration. There are dungeons. In the middle of doing anything, world PvP can erupt - my favourite kind. At end game you don't need to worry about quests if you don't want to. It's an MMO; there's more things to do than you can shake a stick at. But I do agree on the repetativeness of questing pre-50's before your character has a chance to gain most of its class-defining abilities and gear.

    Myth 3. There is not enough content

    This should probably get merged into #2 but whatever. I was standing outside a fort the other day wondering what I should do. It was Hallow's End, a halloween event that adds a swathe of seasonal content to the game, and I was struck by a thought: if I were to roll a brand new character, I would have more things to do than I could fathom. The achievements system ensures that there's an extra layer to everything you do. The dungeons and reputations and achievements and pvp and large number of unique class/talent combinations would keep you busy for years. The true scope of the game, pre-wrath, suddenly hit me like a stapler hitting the balding head of an IT consultant as he enshrined the virtues of domain-centric networking infrastructure to a technical executive in a large services corporation that delivers banking and financial services to leading institutions across the globe.

    Myth 4. If you play WoW you have no life

    A catch-all argument that can encapsulate any game or non-mainstream entertainment activity on the planet. If you watch anime you have no life. If you collect stamps you have no life. If you go tramping you have no life. It's fun. It's social. It's not getting tanked in a bar at 2am. Get over it. As an aside, I'm a
  • by Jack9 ( 11421 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @08:25PM (#25781019)

    See now THAT's insightful.

  • by nleaf ( 953206 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @08:32PM (#25781061)
    You can simplify everything down to a few repetitious tasks.

    "Seriously - how many [FPSes] are just the same [game] over and over again with different graphics? ...but by [the time you've killed something] you've pretty much seen all of the gameplay there is to see."

    "Seriously - how many [versions of Solitaire] are just the same [game] over and over again with different graphics? ...but by [the time you've put one card on top of another] you've pretty much seen all the gameplay there is to see."

    "Seriously - how [much porn is] just the same [thing] over and over again with different graphics? ...but by [the time you've seen one pair of boobs] you've pretty much seen all the gameplay there is to see."

    Ultimately, you can simplify all of human experience down to repetition if you want. The definition of gameplay and fun differs by person. Even though WoW doesn't fit your narrow definition of fun, it seems to work for a lot of people. Look at the Penny Arcade comic you linked--sure, it pokes fun at the expansion, but I think Gabe is still pretty heavily involved in the game.

  • Re:65 hours... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by vux984 ( 928602 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @09:06PM (#25781285)

    That's actually an idea I've been campaigning for. These raiding guilds like to show off how great they are, yet they're just incredibly dedicated. Your average guild can't even get people to log in for scheduled events on time.

    Right. The Raid game is warped... its the only part of wow that isn't a tedious grind, and most of the players can't access it due to the fact that its unrealistic for most people to organize into groups that large, and schedule their lives around hooking up with these guys. Its the same reason most of us can't play organized sports once we 'grow up'. Its not that I don't enjoy soccer/football... but I can't commit to showing up twice a week on schedule with 15 people to join a league. Some people can, but they are a distinct minority. For most of us its simply unrealistic. So I play 'sports' that can be done more ad hoc, solo, or in small groups, and impromptu organized... mountain biking, fencing, squash, golf...

    WoW should similarly focus on the 90%+ that doesn't raid, and the developers should spend their time and development money into turning the small-group game in WoW that most people actually play to the same level of detail and complexity that they put into the raid game and get rid of the tedious grind. Make it freaking hard...that's fine... but target everything to the small group.

    The raiders? Fuck em. They can play something else. In fact, ideally Blizzard spins off a separate WoW game just for them, start everyone who plays at level 80 and and make it "all raids, all the time". If they want to filter noobs or something, they can make them grind to level 80 in regular-wow before they upgrade their account and switch games to raider-wow. (Sort of like you had to beat diablo in normal, befre you can play 'hardcore'.)

    I think this would be awesome. Everyone gets what they want.

    The question I would find most interesting is what the raid-game would cost. Raiders tend to use far more bandwidth than less "hard core players", and consume far more content per hour. Would Blizzard be able to support a raider-mmorpg at $12.95/mo or whatever it is, without the massive 'subsidy' the current raid game is given by the 90% of the players who pay for it now, but never get to see it. Ie... if all the revenue for raider-warcraft came from raiders could it sustain itself?

    Because right now I think most WoWers are getting the shaft, paying 12.95/mo for the developers to spend the bulk of their time subsidizing the bandwidth and content tuning for raiders, and then paying $x for an expansion where clearly the bulk of the effort was again spent on the raiders... sure in terms of total content the single players get more... but its mostly stuff that's just been 'phoned in' repetive fedex/kill quests and other mindless tedium. All the really neat stuff is in the raids.

  • by caitsith01 ( 606117 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @09:37PM (#25781467) Journal

    The most popular game of all time is going to get written about. I don't care either, but I'm not bitching that the news isn't exactly tailored to my interests.

    By that logic we should see a lot more stories about The Sims, which contrary to your suggestion is actually more popular than WoW...

    This story would be fairly pointless no matter which game it was about. "Game player beats expansion pack for game" is not exactly news no matter how you look at it.

  • by unity100 ( 970058 ) on Sunday November 16, 2008 @10:46PM (#25781813) Homepage Journal
    In every game there are people who take it way seriously. i know that a percentage of people have prepared for this launch, planning, plotting, gathering resources to be the first at something, including levels. since wow now has an achievement system, every kind of zit you succeed gets recorded. not only reaching level 80 first. hence the rush.

    these people are powergamers. they do it with an attitude more serious than any job they work in. take turns and do whatnot. and a goodly number of them are beta testers, so already know what to do at what certain point. AND if they didnt get to level 80 in 15 hours, they would get to it in 3 days if it was way tougher, or if they didnt already clear the content in 3 days, they would do it in 3 weeks. it wouldnt matter for them.

    but the thing is, those people are SO in the minority among 18 million wow players that, what they do does not matter. for majority of that 18 million, which are mainly casual gamers, or gamers with scarce time in their hands (as many gamers mature in age, their life responsibilities weigh more).

    wow was WAY too tough for those people. not because they were stupid or lacked the capacity or 'skills' - as many powergamer cunts use in wow jargon - or anything - the casuals would not see WORKING for 4 hours a night for farming some boss in order to get an item that will better their gear with 2.5 %, SO that they will be better equipped to deal with a higher boss in another instance, and the gamers with responsibilities (grown ups) were short of time, being able to put only 4-5 hours a week to the game.

    this 'easiness' of new wow content will make sure that these people, who are actually the bulk of the subscribers, will be able to see end game content. this matters. because these people are the people paying the majority of the funds for this game, and providing for keep up of all those servers, personnel and development costs.

    powergamers are getting the shaft with this expansion. and fortunately so, for the sake of any game, they should indeed get the shaft. its way stupid torturing and alienating millions of players for the sake of satisfying a small percentage of achievement deranged powergamer individuals - that approach has sunk many games in the past.
  • by ildon ( 413912 ) on Monday November 17, 2008 @01:14AM (#25782541)

    Let me wait 5 hours while the other 1200 people on the server take their turns. Yay I walked one square! Oh no! I'm unconscious! Now I have to wait for those 1200 people to take their 10 turns while I sit here unconscious! I'll be back next week.

    Yeah, definitely a WoW-killer.

  • by merreborn ( 853723 ) on Monday November 17, 2008 @03:56AM (#25783323) Journal

    Please keep me informed whenever anyone else makes it to level 80, I really don't want to miss any of their important in game breakthroughs.

    Stuff that matters, indeed.

    This actually represents a very important (albeit not new) lesson to MMO developers: you can spend months designing new content, but players will grind through much of it in hours or days, regardless.

    It's *very* important for fledgling MMO designers to understand that. Many times, single-player and small-scale multiplayer game designers have built elaborate quests that would have taken a week to solve in a single player game, only to find that players solve them in hours. When you design content for an MMO, it's not you, the designer, versus 10,000 individuals, it's you the designer versus a few large and relatively well coordinated mobs.

    Failure to understand that is grounds for major disappointment for all involved.

    Of course, massively multiplayer gaming has been around in one form or another for at least two decades now (if you define "massively" as more than about 100), so this lesson is not a new one [], but it never hurts to reinforce it, especially as the MMO market continues to grow, and this particular lesson continues to prove true for larger and larger games.

  • by KillerBob ( 217953 ) on Monday November 17, 2008 @09:49AM (#25784985)

    Personally, I like the constant reminders that the game doesn't take itself seriously. It's full of humour and pop culture references that I never really saw in other games. I almost fell out of my chair the first time I saw the statue at Janeiro Point, off Booty Bay....

    It's a game that keeps itself light-hearted, while still providing a rich and detailed experience for the roleplayers, and a ton of content for the hardcore gamers.

    Though we got our first level 80 Death Knight on Saturday morning, on my server, and when I see stuff like that, I have to ask whether some of these players are planning on going outside once in a while... For the non-players, DK is the *new* class that came with the expansion. You start at level 55, so unlike the other classes, you had 25 end-game levels to grind out in a day and a half, not just 10... and they did it before some of the other classes hit 80. >.>

  • by tetrisornot ( 1319107 ) on Monday November 17, 2008 @10:34AM (#25785463)
    I actually only play this game because of the auctions and virtual economy. So this game isn't just for people who like to raid or pvp. I don't quest unless I need to level and I don't raid to get gear. I just make money and buy my gear, with the occasional pvp here and there. There are many different ways to have fun in this game but this is by far the least time sinking. WOW is a time sink if you let it, I typically spend 10 hours a week on this game, with auctioning and arena. Just about any raider will have to log 20-30 hours a week to keep up with raiding requirements.

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