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3-30-2012 @ 4:36PM
My feelings for Dragon Soul are pretty much just....meh. I think some parts of it are cool of course, But I've never gotten an overwhelming feeling "wow this is epic and awesome!" in the raid. I get that reusing art assets makes sense from a story perspective, I really do. But I also feel a little cheated that the raid doesn't offer some amazing new place to explore. I love Ulduar and ICC for the surprises and little details found along the way. In general, I haven't enjoyed the raids as much this expansion, but even Firelands and BoT were something new that felt like it needed to be explored and conquered. Throne of the Four Winds is hands down my favorite art asset for a setting in Cata, and it still kinda breaks my heart that it was used for a throw away raid. (I'd have rather spent time killing seven bosses in there than in BWD). I mean....Dragon Soul's ship fight uses the same music from the Lootship fight in ICC. I know these are little details, but these are the things that bother me about the raid. I guess it's just not the kind of raid I enjoy. I like big, sprawling raids with lots of different enemies. I love the idea of winged raids, where you can kind of go and choose what you want to work on for the night, and those wings have a distinctly different flavor. I love little details that add to the awesomeness of moments. I like fighting my way through creepy corridors or giant rooms that feel like greenhouses or a place that feels like it could be a city. I don't like hopping on a dragon's back and having it drop me off at a hole in the ground, then taking a portal to get back again. This is just my opinion. I know other people feel differently. I'm glad that there are people who love this raid and have enjoyed it. But this raid, to me, just feels lazy and forgettable. I've never quoted any memorable emotes from the bosses in it. I've never stopped to point out how amazing a piece of music in it is. I never once felt awed during it, not even after we killed Deathwing. This is probably just all my problem, but it's the way I feel. Honestly, Dragon Soul pretty much just sums up how I feel about Cataclysm in general. I've gotten some enjoyment out of it, and I still love WoW as a whole, but I'm ready for this expansion to be over.
3-30-2012 @ 4:57PM
Couldn't agree more. Cataclysm did an absolutely awesome job of revamping the 1-60 experience, but everything else about it was just so...meh. Maybe that's just because I didn't connect with DW as a villain much...he felt like one of those James Bond style bosses that sends endless waves at mooks at us as he watches from afar, cackling about how eeeeevil he is. Yeah, I know he has some interesting lore behind him and that he was in WC2 or whatever...but I just didn't feel a strong connection with him as a character the way I did with Arthas and, to a lesser extent, Illidan.I know some people thought it was cheesy, but I actually preferred the Lich King popping up constantly in Wrath, since every time I saw him randomly appear in a zone or quest, it just made me want to kill him even more. I think that's why my first thought after defeating the Lich King the summer before Cata came out was, "Wow, that was epic! I'm gonna remember this one for a long time!" For DW, it was just, "Thank goodness, Cataclysm is over...hurry up and get here, MoP." Here's to hoping Blizz can bring that magic back in MoP. Even as a Hordie, I'm looking forward to schooling Garrosh. =)
3-30-2012 @ 6:27PM
Well said. I still love this game, and I'll be the first to defend it against baseless critiques, but Dragon Soul felt underdeveloped and thrown together (at least encounter-wise.) I can't help but feel that there were originally other intentions for a lot of the raid, including some new art assets, but they had to shift gears and work with what they had to get it out on time. I think this could have been a very memorable raid, but the bosses themselves are kind of forgettable for a few reasons, not the least of which being that we've been looking at all of these models for the whole expansion. Take Ultraxion. I get it, he's Deathwing's "ultimate creation" (I thought that was Chromatus?) but he's just a big Twilight dragon. Personally, the whole "Twilight dragons are horrifying abominations" loses a little of its impact for me when they're just purple. A resurrected Theralion and Valiona, both heads stitched onto the same body, would have been much more memorable, and would be a fitting end for their bickering dynamic (which were some of Cataclysm's more memorable raid quotes for me.) Hagara is another example. I'm okay with another evil shaman, but for an orc boss in a raid where Thrall features so heavily, I feel like they could have set her backstory up a little better. Maybe she's former Earthen Ring, or lost her family to Alliance incursion in the Barrens, and wants revenge on Thrall for leading the orcs to settle in an inhospitable land but not taking a stand against the enemy on their doorstep. Her Tauren lieutenant could even have been a former resident of Taurajo. They set up these far-reaching Horde storylines in the beginning of Cataclysm, why not have them tie in to the final raid? Just examples of things they could have done to make Dragon Soul feel like a culmination of all things Cataclysm. I would have liked to see Goblins and Worgen tie in somehow, too, even in some small way. Blood elves and Draenei were heavily involved in the Sunwell, and the Ebon Blade were instrumental in the attack on Icecrown. Their inclusion in the final raids brought some sense of completion to their respective storylines. Dragon Soul brings closure (hopefully) to Thrall's storyline, but other than putting a villain down, it didn't do much for me story-wise. It didn't help that a lot of folks felt disconnected from Deathwing as a character.Now, if we had gotten a chance to encounter an pre-corruption Neltharion in a Caverns of Time instance...Oh well. I still have faith in this game's story, and I don't mind a few stumbles. Here's to new stories and lore in Mists!
3-31-2012 @ 12:42AM
Actually we had to fight against five-headed Chromatic Dragon, not Ultraxion. The last raid place was clearly staged in Twighlight of the Aspects, but I think Blizzard had to dedicate their forces to MoP so all we got was a lot of reused models.
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