Jul 14th 2009 6:45PM Very useful. However, one of the most interesting feature of the ej spreadsheet is the gear planner, which allows you to figure out how to optimize your dps based on new pieces of loot. It is the one thing that I use the most, and keep open when raiding Uld-25 or doing hard mode fights in Uld-10.
May 8th 2009 2:03AM I would bet that Blizzard continues to acquire users at a decent clip. They advertise, spend money on marketing, which leads to the acquisition of new users. The real question is churn: how many users have actually abandoned the game? Just figure out amongst your guildies or people you have played with consistently over the past 12 months, or more. How many of these have quit, stating that they were bored with the game, and would let their subscription lapse? That's the number Blizzard has to worry about.
If the numbers are the same as they were 4 months ago, that would mean that the churn is equal to the new subscribers number. Since Blizzard does not re-imburse people for the time left on their subscription when they cancel, the full effect of the churn will kick in in a few months, with Q2 and Q3 results essentially - assuming that people decided to stop playing a few months intro WotLK.
May 3rd 2009 3:33PM There are two sets of issues leading to serious players being bored out of their skulls a few weeks into new content:
- Whereas the initial tuning of an Ulduar-25 was hard, as in really fun and enjoyable hard, it gets nerfed down to oblivion so that even the more careless players - the ones who don't pay attention to AOE damage or boss abilities - can down bosses and get loot.
- This whole business of 10 and 25-man instances means that you always run the same content. Over and over. You run 25-man content on raid days on your main, and the same in 10-man content on your alts. Why? Because you have run Naxx, EoE, and OS so much in the past 6 months that you don't want to get in there ever again.
The solution: bring back a Karazhan or a Zul'aman, a solid 10-man instance that is fun to run, and delivers quality loot to players. And then tune your 25-man raids so they are genuinely challenging but not impossible.
I have seen many friends quit wow in the past 6 months, just bored by the lack of challenges and variety. And they were not hard core, just serious players who enjoyed this game. If Blizz was making a "customer lifetime value" assessment of these guys, I am certain that they played for years. I don't think that the casual players who can now get in Naxx, ninja some lewt and quit the pug as soon as a bit of challenge pops up (Ohai Thaddius) will be anywhere close in terms of total dollars earned.
I really hope that Blizzard's new MMO is going to solve that issue. If not, they'll only go in one direction in the long run - 3 to 5 years - to the ground baby.
Apr 27th 2009 6:12PM Finding dwarf, orc and tauren females in Dalaran is a real challenge, especially if the few who are available do not promptly remove the bunny ears when they get tagged. I spent a good chunk of my playtime to warp through that world event. No fun to be had at all - makes you wonder why I did it - besides the meta-achievement.
Apr 6th 2009 1:02PM Definitely agree, I spent a couple of days as a fresh 58 DK leveling my herbalism and alchemy to 300, so I can jump into Outland and progress both as part of the 58 to 68 journey. Herbalism is incredibly quick to level, and so is basic alchemy to 350.
Blizz has really made it easy on us by setting the profession bar for Northrend to 350 as opposed to 375. These last 25 points were often the most challenging and costly to get.
Apr 3rd 2009 4:07PM I saw last night that the preliminary download had been completed on my machine (555 MB). This last minute triage means that the patch may be dropping imminently.
Mar 10th 2009 1:52PM The content is easier and the game more tolerant to players' mistakes. There is barely any challenge when leveling, even 2 or 3-man group quests can mostly be solo'ed - at least by the classes I have played (hunter, prot paly, death knight).
I just hope that Ulduar will be tuned harder than it is on the PTR today.
Feb 23rd 2009 6:48PM The point has been made over and again: the goggles and the gun are really powerful when leveling, but they don't scale beyond Naxx. In a raid situation, engineering has nothing to offer in terms of unique buffs or features. That's why I dropped Engineering for Blacksmithing on my paladin, and will most likely drop Engineering for Jewelcrafting - still relying on my maxed out mining - after 3.1 is live. Just to see whether Engineering will get some love or not.
Feb 10th 2009 1:07PM Sounds like I'll finally give up engineering to take up jewelcrafting. I don't mind the fact that it is hard to make money with engineering, but there is just no bonus you get out of the profession once you have geared up - except the ever useful mote extractor. One way of changing that trend would be to create ammos with a specific feature: mana drain, poison, etc. that only engineers could craft and equip. Once ammos are no longer consummed, that would become feasible.