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Ghostcrawler on the future of 5-mans

Snowyfox of the US Vek'nilash server recently brought up a point on the forums which is near and dear to my heart: 5-mans really feel like they've lost their heart. In both Vanilla WoW and Burning Crusade, you could usually count on having the motivation and reward for running a 5 man no matter what your level. In Vanilla WoW, you might do a tribute run for potions and buffs or a Stratholme run for Abomination stitchings for an enchant. In BC, you'd run for badges. In Wrath of the Lich King... not so much. Badges don't stretch so far since most of the good stuff requires badges only obtained in raid dungeons, and even the daily quests aren't even close to as lucrative as just heading up to the Argent Tournament or over to the Sons of Hodir and doing some dailies.

Yet 5-mans, in many ways, are the heart of the game. They're where you cut your teeth on group mechanics and really learning your class. While there are many PuG horror stories, they can also be a place to meet new friends and prospective guild members. They're a nice way to get together and do something with friends in game that's a little less intensive than raiding but can be done with everyone on the same page more easily than trying to synchronize quests. I know I have quite a few great memories of doing 5-man dungeons with friends, myself.

The nice thing is, Ghostcrawler chimed in to say that things may have not fallen completely on deaf ears. They did stuff like making end-game raiding more accessible and segregating badge rewards so that raiders wouldn't feel like they were obligated to run 5-mans, he says, but in the process they may have made 5-mans too easy to graduate from, and thus they may want to strike a balance in the future.

I'd love to see 5-man progression more open-ended and rewarding in the future. Being able to work toward more badge gear and even cool cosmetic rewards like the Argent Tournament mounts and pets would be amazing, as would a wider variety of daily quests with interesting storylines (Something beyond kill me the boss and bring me this drop) and solid rewards that make them more enticing than the soloable dailies. Since it seems Blizzard has this idea in their heads, perhaps we'll see the first fruits of it in patch 3.2. I'd love to see more interesting daily quests or rewards come out of the 5-man Argent Coliseum and even out of other older dungeons that would inspire me to log on and run them again.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Instances

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