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1-30-2012 @ 5:10PM
I LOVE sporting analogies for WoW. Whenever some of my less-geeky friends look down on my hobby, I point out that it's basically like participating in a rec-sports league but on computers over long-distances.I agree that raids have gotten harder- just look at some of the Molten Core bosses and marvel at encounters with the complexity of a modern five-man boss. However at the same time players have gotten proportionally more skilled: the resources which a player has to improve himself has increased exponentially, whether its addons, elitist jerks, spreadsheets or fight videos. So I don't think its so much that the game has progressed from IM-level to minor league play, it's that players have gotten a lot better so the game had to react accordingly. Just as Naismith had no way of expecting that someday we'd have players capable of dunking, or the NFL could never anticipate that a team could field Ticonderoga-class linemen with the agility of a ballerina, WoW has had to adjust its rules on-the-fly for a playerbase that is increasingly skilled. But it's a good thing! Fight mechanics are increasingly creative and challenging. The downside is that yes, if you chose not to use the resources at your disposal, you fall increasingly behind the curve. But to continue the sporting analogy, in the old days players could eat fried foods, smoke before games, and party all night afterwards. Nowadays players at all levels of competition know that to win they need to take care of their body, eat right, do drills, lift weights, and attend camps because if they don't they'll get surpassed by someone willing to do so. Yes, it sucks for the more casual player, but look at how much more entertaining a modern basketball game is than say, a game in the pre-shot clock era. So sadly this means that in today's game, a player has to to step up their game or get left behind. If they're unwilling to do so*, don't blame the game, blame the player for failing to keep up.*I am of course, leaving out an entire segment of the population which either isn't internet savvy enough or not fortunate enough to have friends to guide them. This is something that needs to be addressed by the game, and to their credit the developers have acknowledged that WoW doesn't do a very good job of teaching their players how to play. However, I don't think the solution is to dumb down the content to Wrath-faceroll levels.
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