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8-22-2008 @ 2:40PM
The major flaw about Recruit-a-Friend is that it's giving people gameplay rewards for actions performed outside of the gameplay. This is breaking an important principle in MMO gaming. It should never happen. Only what players do in the game, should affect what happens to your character in the game. Especially when it comes to basic gameplay mechanics like xp and leveling. Blizzard knows this very well, and that's some of the reason they have taken an aggressive stance against various forms of cheating, like hacks, account trading, gold and item trading (RMT), botting, powerleveling and so on.Not only is R-a-F a powerleveling service provided by Blizzard, but it's also additionally flawed by having various strings attached to it that makes it unusable by a lot of the players.The most obvious problem is that if you do not have anyone to recruit, you're left out. If you don't have the hardware or money to multibox, you're left out. If you come from a country like Denmark, where this kind of scheme is illegal, you're left out.This is the second basic MMO gaming principle that Blizzard violates by using the R-a-F ploy. They are effectively discriminating players by doling out xp and levels for only a select part of their customer base.Some of you are saying, "Yeah, but it's for a greater good. They are facilitating players, so that they can catch up with the other players". Well, I agree with you. There should be an option to skip leveling, since there's not enough players in the starting areas to make our time there enjoyable. And with those who are able to use R-a-F leveling up in a jiffy, it will be even more empty and boring.Some seem to totally disregard the fact that R-a-F is an extremely poor solution to the problem. There's a lot of other options that could facilitate *everybody* in the same way, instead of just catering to those who provide Blizzard with extra income.Now, some of you might say "Well, Blizzard are all about making money. If you don't like it, you can play something else". That's true. They are free to do whatever they want with their own game. They're free to degrade the game, sell out and disgrace themselves if they want to. But, remember that a large part of Blizzard's success and henceforth a large part of what makes them so great is that they always have been all about putting *good and fair gameplay* in front of gaining monetary wealth. This has always been Blizzards official development strategy. They have been proud about it, and not afraid to use it as a selling point. A standpoint that has gained them a lot of respect amongst their fans.US CM Belfaire posted on the subject before R-a-F came in effect, i.e. Blizzard's official stance on the subject:"We want all players to be on equal footing, regardless of income and livelihood. You say that because it's open to everybody, that it won't give one player an advantage, but this is patently false. While we do offer paid services, these are technical or vanity services as opposed to services which offer a real and true advantage in the game, like RMT gold buying would."http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/thread.html?topicId=4822544200&pageNo=1&sid=1#6Recent interview with Paul Sams, the "Chief Operating Officer" of Blizzard Entertainment. In it, he explained a bit about Blizzard's way of dealing with business models:"At Blizzard, the business model doesn't come until late in the game. We focus on what the experience is, what the gameplay is and what the overall kind of feature set is before we start talking about what the business model is. I know there is a lot of speculation, but candidly, we just don't know yet.I think a lot of businesspeople would say "oh well, the important stuff is how we generate profit and revenue". But, our feeling is that's secondary. We need to focus on what the experience is, make sure that the gameplay is right, and then we wrap a business model around that."Source: http://warcraft.moviechronicles.com/So, why have Blizzard launched R-a-F? Honestly, I don't know. But I do know that there is dissent amongst the people at Blizzard about this. Unfortunately, they are bound to silence as employees. Some bullheaded businesspeople have probably forced this decision, and now they are testing the water while at the same time stealing potential customers from the new MMOs like WAR. How do you think that will affect the evolution of MMORPG gaming for us as gamers?So, yeah... Before you start blindly defending R-a-F, just remember that it *could* have been fashioned in a way that would facilitate *all* players and without breaking these fundamental principles. There's no need to go into tunnel-vision mode.What will be next?
8-22-2008 @ 3:02PM
Your supposition falls apart pretty much immediately. "Only what players do in the game, should affect what happens to your character in the game." So you've never used wowhead, read boss strategies, looked at the forums, used an addon, or used a profession leveling guide? Heck, how are you even on wowinsider?
8-22-2008 @ 3:09PM
You just posted this ridiculous rant over at mmo champion. Get over yourself. "important principle in MMO gaming". Princinple's in a video game? Good lord. And, putting crap like this out there "If you don't have the hardware or money to multibox, you're left out." I can run two wow's on my old 2000 dell with it'joke of a 4x agp card. And if 14.99 a month is breaking you, you have more problems than just playing wow. Someone's always gotta complain about something and you're just raging over small stuff.
8-22-2008 @ 3:12PM
They did not break or did anything wrong, Blizzard knows ever increasing level caps makes getting your friends in the game and leveling a daunting task.
8-22-2008 @ 4:30PM
@Bitter: Information gathering doesn't alter the game mechanics directly, like R-a-F does. Neither does Blizzard set any limitations on who's able to access information.@Chuddy: Blizzard already established these principles, I happen to agree with them. R-a-F goes against Blizzards own philosophy.If Blizzard provided something similar to all players without any strings attached, it would be an excellent feature imo.
8-22-2008 @ 7:45PM
haha. You really dont see how much of a stink you're making out of nothing. Man, if you're so beefed up about this, gosh...hahahahahaha...there's SO much more to be concerned about. Yet you're so pissed of by this you write that ridiculous rant and now are try to pass it off as totally legit..haha. Man this is 10/10.
8-22-2008 @ 9:55PM
Clearly, RAF discriminates against the friendless. Glad you're here to set things right, Captain Awesome.
8-23-2008 @ 4:27AM
I leave it to the readers of WoW Insider to make their own decisions based on the arguments presented here =)
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