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9-16-2011 @ 9:54AM
The raiding population has shrunk along with the player base as a whole, but faster. IMO, this is due to the stiff increase in difficulty of Tier 11 raids over ToC and ICC.WoW is more of a social event than a halo / MW2 competition event for most players, and the fun got sucked out by the difficulty of raiding (and heroic 5-mans at the start of the xpac). My experience is that my guild lost a lot of people who stopped raiding due to the knife-edge character of boss fights (meaning, you are often 1 mistake by 1 person away from a wipe). Raids became far less cooperative and a lot more recriminative (is that a word?).People who blog and are way into raiding for the satisfaction of killing a boss after dozens of wipes will decry this change and may well quit the game. Blizz is betting that successfully bringing back social players will outnumber the losses of those who consider their in-game accomplishments to have been slighted.
9-16-2011 @ 10:19AM
I agree. Our server is dead last for 10 man T12, and 227/241 for 25 T12. (it's not counting our 25 man Alysrazor kill from last night, so these numbers may change.). Our guild, being the only 25 man raiding guild on the server has a WORLD rank of 3333. Compare that to Wrath.....we never dipped below the 10k world rank for 25 man (Except for RS...but that fight was a preview to what was to come in Cata....). I'm not complaining, I just think it's very telling of how the theory of the hard core ramp up that Blizz did this xPac wasn't adjusted for the masses.
9-16-2011 @ 10:29AM
I disagree that the raids are too hard; certainly not the normals. But with incremental gear improvements available every 4-6 months, and post raid-launch nerfs, and 10 mans providing 25 man quality loot...what's the point? "The challenge" works for only the most serious of MMO players...but if i know the content will just be deprecated at some point so that I can breeze through in a night (first time), there's very little incentive for me to actually commit to raiding 5-10hrs a week for months on end. Karazhan/Gruul/Magtheridon were not substantially easier than the current raids IMHO, and raiding exploded with TBC.
9-16-2011 @ 10:51AM
Raids have always been hard. That is the point of them. The problem is that the player base has become of the casual flavor, mainly and has trouble staying out of the fire. Mechanics heavy fights takes paying attention to what is going on around you.That is asking a lot from most.I still don't think the nerf will help as itll still be hard for most.
9-16-2011 @ 10:54AM
I'm not a raider, much less a cutting edge gamer, but I kind of agree with the general idea that this is Too Soon, Executus. At least, it's too soon without having announced this was their intention from the begining, kind of like a reverse of the progressive buff in Icecrown, there could have been a progressive Debuff on the bosses, "Hyjal's Vengance" or some such, to reflect the efforts of the druids on the Molten Front. Instead it seems to be a reaction to some statistic we can't see and they're scrambling to keep interest in the raid up.I can't help but wonder if the system could be helped if they kind of "reversed" the way they did raids and heroic difficulty. Instead of having "Normal" difficulty, which gets trounced by the "cutting edge" anyways, as both the default and a requirement for proceeding to Heroic version, when a raid is Brand Spanking New (IE, Patch Day), the Raid is Heroic ONLY for 2 or 4 weeks.After a set time, THEN Normal mode is released. Something to let the Elitists get some pride, since they (**Incoming Stereotype, Warning!!!**) tend to not really care about non-raid content and would ignore as much the non-raid content as they could, where as the more casual group could work their way through the other stuff, gear up using the nerfed heroic raids of the previous tier they may or may not have had some problem with, and then proceed to the "normal" level raid, advancing to heroic as they can tolerate.This isn't a perfect approach, and I'm sure it's full of weaknesses, but there's got to be a better balance between "tossing a bone" to the Hard Core and "dumbing down the game" for the more casual majority.
9-16-2011 @ 12:20PM
I agree. Many people complained about the general ease of Wrath. Blizz also had 12 million subscribers during that time. Cata comes out, the leveling content is quick, and the end game is quite a bit harder. I think this issue is a time vs fun argument. The truth is that everybody finds fun in different things. What I found fun about raiding wasn't get purples. It was accomplishing a goal on a team and feeling like a valued memember of team play. Many argue that part of that is doing the right thing at the right time and executing mechanics perfectly until the encounter is complete. And THAT is rewarding. It feels great when you down a boss you've been working on. To get there that takes preparation and practice, which costs time.Therein is the problem. During Wrath, if I had an hour of game play, I could log on, hammer out a heroic, do a couple dailies, and feel I've accomplished something AND I also prepped for a raid on the weekends. During Cata, with increased difficulty comes increased prep. You only have an hour of play? Forget about queueing asDPS for a Zul dungeon, you'll be in queue for about 20-30 minutes, and the dungeon will typically run you 40-60. You want good gear, gems, and enchants? You need to pay either a lot of gold or grind out a lot of mats. That part has gotten easier as the game progressed through this expansion due to patching from Blizz. And I could probably keep going. The short is that the prep time to be successful for progression raids in Cata has increased, but the play time available for players hasn't.So Blizz has an issue. They made Ragnaros, and for them, he's like the Lich King. He's from the first progression raid they ever made, they did an epic TON of work into the zone, and they want everybody to see him, marvel for a bit, and kill him. They've made fine art and they want the world to enjoy it, but they're looking at number of kills made, the 4.3 dungeon coming down the pipe, and where Cata has been so far, and they're thinking, "We got to do something if we want the world to experience this guy while he's still relevant. More than that, we got to do something if we want everybody to experience Deathwing. Everybody is running out of time."That's were nerfs start coming in. They tweak the numbers that are easiest, people can see the mechanics, but have some wiggle room to not play through them perfectly, and not feel that they have to spend so much time on the prep required to give them that wiggle room. Then everybody has a chance to jump into the Deathwing raid when it first comes out.
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