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3-21-2011 @ 9:36AM
I think the main problem with this expansion is the 5 level increase. I leveled my main and she is the raider. I'm in mostly 359 and other than showing up for raids 3 times a week there isn't much for me to do on her. I have another 85 that is heroic geared to the max and I've done a couple of alt raids on her. Still another 85 that isn't very well geared, and an 84 that I have leveled mainly through farming herbs. I have 5 maxed crafting professions and 2 maxed gathering professions, 52 exalted reps on my main, all Cata reps at exalted on my second... I think that's enough work for now. In the middle of my third 85 gear grind was when Dragon Age 2 was released and I completely dove into that. It was actually a relief to escape in another game for a while. I'm definitely starting to feel the burnout. There is a lot less leveling content than in previous expansions, leaving limited options for people who don't pvp and mainly work on alts.
3-21-2011 @ 9:58AM
You said it differently than I would have Gerbera, but I think this is the single biggest reason for the burnout that has affected my guild and most of the raiding guilds on my server (at least it seems that way, based on forum chatter). We've lost half of our ten-man team over the past three weeks - all of them quitting the game outright, not just taking a break, and to a person, the reason is boredom - there is nothing to do other than log in three nights a week for progression content. There are only so many alts you can level, and so many times you can do the same five zones with the same five levels and the same five faction reps.While I love the 1-60 content, I really feel Blizzard fell down on 80+, where their principal strategy was to make earning raid-ready gear a longer (although not necessarily harder) slog in place of creating more content. I think a lot of raiders were used to the process in Wrath, where initially the ramp to Naxx took longer to get to, then patch content provided enough value-added rep grinds and other stuff (including easy raid-ready of alts) to keep you busy.I don't really see anything in 4.1 fixing this, so I guess it's not something Blizzard is that concerned about.
3-21-2011 @ 11:07AM
Rock- Dealing with the mess that was old-world, 1-60, leveling. No one can seriously argue that the 1-60 experience wasn't a relic and wasn't the worst part of the game by the end of Wrath.Hard Place- Taking the time to revamp 60 levels of content, while also providing significant endgame content, all in a realistic amount of time.I'm going to go out and say that this "early burnout" was, for the most part, unavoidable in a lot of respects. There simply isn't nearly as much endgame (80+) content in this expansion, and that's because the majority of the time spent was on the 1-60. Not counting the 4 new low lvl zones that came with two new races in BC, endgame players have received 99% of the new content in the last two expansions, and that system was simply not sustainable.As far as the difficulty goes, I honestly think a lot of people are overreacting, I know I sure did.Sure, those first couple heroics were brutal, but it really didn't take long for people to get the hang of them, I pug heroics all the time and I would say I'm 85-90% successful. Really my only gripe with them is that they are too bloody long.Raids were the same way, my very casual (1 night a week, didn't even kill LK) guild spent two weeks on Magmaw beating our heads against a wall, convinced that Cata raiding wasn't for us, yet here we are a month later 5/12, a handful of us still with below 346 gear in some slots.
3-21-2011 @ 11:34AM
I would blame the linearity more than the 5 levels.Cataclysm is akin to a movie. Fantastic storytelling, but from the second time onwards it becomes too repetitive. You can't even skip a single squirrel fetching quest else the game won't let you progress.Whereas in BC and WotLK you had a nucleus of essential quests each character needed to complete, with the other ones being truly optional, in cataclysm almost every single quest is mandatory. Whereas in the previous expansions completing all quests in a zone felt like an achievement, in Cataclysm it's a milestone.The difficulty is another factor. Too much head banging leads to frustration, which leads to very quick burn out. It's what happened to me even before getting to raids; I only ran heroics in PUGs, and pugging heroics was simply not viable in the first month.BTW, while it can't be completely trusted, if WarcraftRealms' data is correct, burnout levels after just 3 months of Cataclysm should be already on par with burnout after 18 months of WotLK. Not a good sign.
3-21-2011 @ 12:57PM
"squirrel-fetching quest" - i lol'd
3-21-2011 @ 1:37PM
I think there are a lot of factors that are leading to burn out, and it should get some serious discussion.I have 10 things I can think of:1. Tol Barad. It sucks, especially compared to wintergrasp. Wintergrasp was so epic and fun, even the most PvE-centric people would join and enjoy it.2. 80-85 being a lot shorter than 60-70, or 70-80, along with just not as many zones to explore, farm in, and have fun in. Everyone had their favorite zone in wrath; with less added in cata, there are less to fall in love with.3. Less horde-alliance intensity. Despite the fact that we are back in our faction cities, it feels as though the alliance and horde are more separate, and you don't get as much intensity in player interactions. While blizz wanted to move away from the neutral city thing, I really feel that having horde and alliance in dalaran created a certain tension and rivalry. In vanilla, there was a natural rivalry battleground in hillsbrad, and that has also been removed, so open-world pvp has also been nerfed.4. Linearity of quests, and the lack of a wrathgate/battle for the undercity type of line. Being on rails in a game can be fine, but in an open world like an MMO, there should at least be an illusion of choice; or at least, not doing a certain quest or quests shouldn't limit you. And when you do complete the on-rails quests, have at least one that is as epic as the best questline in the game, the Wrathgate.5. Raid content being too hard. I'm not saying it should be easy, what I am saying is sort of what GC was talking about, if people get stuck on progression, they lose interest. Blizzard needs to find a way to nerf raids more quickly, or find a way to have them be done with higher success rates for raiders at a faster rate than currently given.6. Battlegrounds. The 2 new battlegrounds show absolutely no ingenuity as carbon copies of previous bg's. Also, I'm not sure how much rated bg's take away from the non-rated bg's, but I really feel that the system should be re-done. Every bg should count towards rating, and everyone can queue individually for any BG. Not having AV or IOC as part of the rating system stinks, and 10-man AB's seem like a really, really bad idea. Nerf the requirement for PvP rewards (reduce rating requirements) as an offset to this change, and then reward more people with gladiator titles. Make it the top 5% or even 10%, instead of the top 1% or .1% or whatevs.7. The removal of portals from shattrath and dalaran were a bad idea, and still are a bad idea. Return those portals, and then put portals in every major city to every other major city of that faction. One of the things people enjoy doing in wow is farming for old achievements and reps, and the removal of these portals has made that unnecessarily difficult. (Crocolisks in the city, for example, or grinding argent tourney rep, or netherwing rep.)Those are just off the top of my head, and many other complaints have been registered elsewhere. Overall, I have to guess that the shortened 80-85 content as well as decreased raid accessibility has really caused the biggest issue. Blizzard should have at least thrown "casuals" a bone with a Patchwerk, Flame Leviathan, or Gunship type "free loot" encounter. Doesn't seem like there is anything like that so far in cata.
3-21-2011 @ 2:43PM
That darned squirrel-fetching quest! I followed someone's pet mechanical pet squirrel around for 5+ minutes frustrated I couldn't click on it before reality dawned on me!
3-21-2011 @ 3:44PM
Amen to all of this, including the escape to Dragon Age 2--which, even as maddeningly awful as it was for the first half, still managed to suck me in and felt like a much-needed vacation. I mean, everyone suffers from burn out, lord knows I have in the past and came back invigorated and wanting to play again. But when you start thinking of a game as a job to that degree, it's time to step back and assess.I'm also kind of feeling if Bioware suddenly came out with Dragon Age Online, I'm not sure I'd come back to WoW. That's kind of depressing to think about after 4 years of playing this game. But between the apathy of current endgame, the lazy, terrible writing (too much overreliance on pop culture memes past their expiration date, too much misogyny and thinly veiled homophobia, not to mention continuous character derailment), the perpetual railroading of the player experience to kill any sort of unapproved fun or creativity (see: Faded Wizard Hat nerf among other thing), my honeymoon period with Cataclysm was over before it really started. Even the sort-of return of Zul'Aman, my favorite raid of all time next to Kara? The excitement for that wore off pretty quick. I don't know what it'll take for WoW to get the magic back for me.
3-21-2011 @ 3:46PM
I agree with the "being on rails" criticism, but I'm starting to think that the reason why there aren't any side quests isn't just because of the new linear nature, but because they didn't have the time to add side quests to any of the zones. They had a leveling chain that worked so they ran with it, and then went back to finish redoing 1-60. I also agree that the two new BGs, especially Gilneas which is like AB without any strategy, aren't all that. But I think the main problem with the endgame is that it's too grindy without having enough interesting quests or other stuff to compensate. I like the TB dailies, especially the ones you get when your faction holds onto it, but it's still a huge rep grind that can only be shortened somewhat by winning a BG that no one seems to enjoy as the strat is frustrating and the battle area is much less "epic sized" than wintergrasp. With Wintergrasp you could at least tell when you were close to breaking through by the fact that the big f-ing walls and towers now had big f-ing holes in them, with TB the field looks exactly the same at 2 flags with one almost capped as it does with 0 flags.
3-21-2011 @ 7:06PM
I'm ambivalent on the strengths and weaknesses of linearity. On one hand, I do miss the impression of a wide world and complex struggle that Northrend gave. The immersion from plumbing quest-lines in Dragonblight and Icecrown was startling — it was labyrinthine, suggesting that a player might have gotten in over his head, and I loved it.But I also loved Storm Peaks' odyssey, playing out the same for character after character but drawing me in each time.So I simply think pressure and time compromised Blizzard's ability to present compelling stories this time, especially on a small scale. Even though Twilight Highlands is knotted with quests, it was terribly boring for me, ferried from one two-dimensional quest-giver to the next, charged with another drop quest along a pedestrian landscape.Raid-instance lore that borders on the parodical (that Nefarian's such a card!) certainly hasn't helped matters, especially when — echoing Pyro — unforgiving, soul-crushing levels of difficulty has halted a large majority of guilds at end bosses.Two solutions, Blizzard. First, wait until WoW has ended before getting carried away with self-deprecation and in-jokes. Second, make use of the terms "normal" and "heroic."
3-21-2011 @ 8:13PM
"...make use of the terms "normal" and "heroic.""quoted for truth.
3-21-2011 @ 10:54PM
"But I also loved Storm Peaks' odyssey, playing out the same for character after character but drawing me in each time."Amen. I think the quality of the new zones in Cataclysm is just fine, but I can't say I've encountered a single quest chain in the 80-85 zones that really draws me in from a lore/story perspective like Storm Peaks did, even after leveling a dozen characters through it, I kept coming back. It was my impression that Wrath was filled with these kind of lines, and I miss them. I don't care about on rails or off rails, but I very much care about the quality of the story.
3-22-2011 @ 2:03AM
I can see a number of points that I believe have contributed to the sad state of the game at the moment, some of which have already been mentioned.I've played consistently since halfway through Vanilla WoW and can say without doubt that the most fun I've had in the game was during TBC. Some of the things that have changed since this time that are negatively affecting my experience of the game and, in my opinion, other people's experience, are:1. LFD. The LFD tool has hurt the server community. People don't know, nor have a reason to get to know, the other players on their servers as much as they used to. Previously, each server had to work with its own population of players in order to form groups and accomplish dungeon runs. This contributed greatly to the sense of being part of the WoW community on our servers. If the LFD tool worked within servers, rather than across servers, I think this would be a better mechanism from a server community point of view. Keep in mind, it was the early WoW community that contributed this game becoming awesome. 2. This is closely related to the point above... instant ports to dungeons are kinda convenient, but they definitely take away from the number of world encounters that we may potentially get involved in. As an example, travelling to dungeon entrances opened up opportunities for pvp - remember all the fun/frustration (strangely, frustration can lead to both fun and a sense of accomplishment) of pwning members (or being pwned lol) of the opposite faction around the summoning stones, or the random events that occurred whilst travelling to and from the dungeons? This is a fantasy mmo afterall. Travel and exploration are essential componenst that worked just fine during the early iterations of this game. Taking them out to appease the lazy is resulting in everyone becoming lazy and contributing to us all not having enough to do.3. Flying Mounts. This has been commented on somewhere else here and also relates to point 2. above, but flying absolutely everywhere also reduces the chances of random interactions with the world, its environment, and other players.4. Attunements. Yes, sooo many people have complained about not liking doing attunements. To the point that the game no longer has them. Strangely, now everyone is complaining about not having anything to do at endgame!? Attunements were awesome, whether you realised it or not. They expanded the lore of the endgame world, provided challenges and goals to be achieved, and they provided a considerable amount of content for players to work through. Now that they are gone, we have no real goals to work towards, apart from downing random bosses for no apparent reason other than loot. Which brings me to my next point...5. Raid Quests. Where are they? Why am I going into these raids in Cataclysm? I'm sure somewhere during my levelling quests something pointed me to them, but now that I'm here I can't remember what it was and my reason for entering these dangerous dungeons eludes me. What made Karazhan the most loved raid instance of all time in WoW? The whole instance told an epic story. Everything from the attunement quests, through to the design of the instance, and especially the quests that were gradually achieved as we completed our way through the raid. All of which contributed to rep gain and awesome quest rewards - it was worth doing and felt rewarding! Cata has none of this.6. PvP!? Rated battlegrounds are a failed idea. Back in Vanilla and TBC a much larger proportion of the player population PvPed. Why? Because it was worth doing. The gear rewards were simply awesome, and everyone could have access to them if they contributed time to that aspect of the game. As a result, people played.. a lot! PvP (BGs) was fun because everyone was involved, the elites and the noobs. More than this, it provided a tangible goal for people to work towards, which gave them a reason to log in and play even if it wasn't a raid night.7. It's not the difficulty. The difficulty of the game isn't the issue. Challenge is a good thing in a game, especially a fantasy mmo that encourages strategy and team work. It's the little things mentioned above that have drastically, and perhaps subconsciously, changed how we feel about being within the world of Azeroth. The game has previously been much harder than it was in Wrath and is now, yet it was still the most popular game of its kind in the world... something to think about perhaps...I'll conclude by pointing out that for all of the people who I have played with since the Vanilla days, we all share the sentimentality that the game was at its best in both vanilla and especially TBC. What's the one major thing that has changed between Vanilla-TBC, and Wrath-Cata?... the blizzard development team. The orginal team were the A team, hence their removal from WoW for the purpose of developing its successor, "Titan". As much as many faboys out their love their Ghostcrawler, I personally believe the new development team have concentrated too much on appeasing an audience who aren't intelligent/aware enough to know what they really want, rather than continueing to make a game awesome because of its community, its challenge and the rewards gained.
3-22-2011 @ 8:05AM
@ Pyromelter2 few things that you mentioned really hit the nail on the head for me . . .PLEASE put ports back in Dalaran and Shattrath. While Blizzard might think that people will neglect the "central cities" of SW and Org., and that they've solved all problems by putting access to the AH in Dal and Shatt, there is more to it than that. I don't know how many times I've ported people to or from Dalaran so that they could quest out there in their 70s but come back to SW for the cooking and fishing quests. OR so that higher level people could farm out in Northrend. Those areas should be easy to get to. And really, people WILL see the beautiful and improved world with or without the portals. It just makes certain content less accessible and thus, lead to less things to do. PLUS it'd be nice to have an alternative place to rest if SW or Org causes so much lag that you can barely move. Not to mention that some of the holiday achievement are so much harder now without a neutral city. I don't see ANY reason NOT to have the portals back.I miss Wintergrasp. And I remember how easy it was go get into. SOO many people participated until near the end of Wrath. I'd see pvp people and pve people there. I'm not particularly much of a pvper but I queue for WG even when I didn't need the honor or the quests because it was so much fun. I'd run into friends and guildies and we'd work together. Those of us with less pvp skills could still contribute by manning the guns on the keep or using the siege engines or pew-pewing the enemy's vehicles. There was much more to do there, I think.I'd also like to add that resource gathering seems more of a chore now than it previously was. I'm a patient farmer. I can farm for cloth, elemental items, do herbalism and fishing for hours, not only for myself but for my friends. But it seems like the resources are harder to come by. So often, I'd go to Twilight Highlands for the Jasmine only to find about 5 nodes in all while circling for half an hour - and two of those are BUGGED. I need the Int. fish but those are caught only on open waters (which btw. won't count towards the guild achievement), where more than half of the fish I catch are stupid murglesnouts. (I fare better when fishing in Uldam for tanking friends). Also, the rather low drop rates of volatiles make farming a long process, just to get my cloth cooldowns each week. If a patient farmer like me can get this frustrated, then something is off. I don't mind gathering . . . but not if there is so little to gather. I remember the path I used to take from Dalaran to the Argent Tournament to Shadow Vaults and how much herbs I'd get each day, just doing the dailies (even a fair amount of Frost Lotuses). Or for the good fish, even in the open waters of WG, you could only get GOOD FISH!! (Clams were not as useful for high levels, but they were rare and often came with pearls as a nice bonus). If farming is your thing and you get frustrated by even that . . . that could be another source of player (though not necessarily GL) burnout.
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