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Posts with tag draztal

Community Manager Draztal leaves Blizzard

It's always a sad day when a member of the community moves on, and especially so when they're a well-liked and respected Community Manager. Draztal departs Blizzard today, as he told the world via Twitter.

Draztal has been a regular and an interesting poster on the EU forums for a long time. Clearly passionate and heavily involved in WoW, he posted on everything from minor fixes to major complaints, but what we knew him best for was his long, impassioned posts on player misconceptions. Never afraid to address the big issues, to wade into a heated discussion and impart some firm words, Draztal was a great force for level-headedness and good in the community.

WoW Insider wishes him all the best in his new adventure.

Filed under: Blizzard

Draztal ends the "WoW is too easy now" argument in a long and beautiful post

It began with this "even though there is normal and heroic mode i dont see the challange there if it gets beaten in 48 hours" on a forum post. It ended with this: "In the end, what's important is what you experience. If someone else beats Throne of Thunder Normal in 48 hours... good for them, your experience is still intact. TLDR: Don't be lazy. Read the post."

If you are going to read one blue post this year, make it this one. Forget about the eventual blue posts concerning the next expansion, forget about the wit and sass that Ghostcrawler and Zarhym can throw out. Yes, even forget about the amazing sweaters Bashiok and Nethaera wear for Christmas and makes a blog post about. This is the blue post you want to read.

It's an argument we all hear way too often. "WoW is so much easier now, the content is cleared in 48 hours." While the facts behind statements like these are usually entirely wrong (it is here too -- Throne of Thunder hasn't been cleared on Heroic yet, despite guilds working around the clock to do so), the sentiment and perception remains somewhat true in the eyes of the beholder. WoW used to be more difficult, more challenging; but now it's just a joke because of the QQCasuals.

Draztal makes a great long reply to this, outlining just what's changed in the past eight years to lead to this perception, and why things actually are not harder than they are. It's possible to sum it up by just saying that there are a vastly large number of resources for players now, and that the difficulty of raids and progression has been switched into three tiers instead of one. It's now possible to enjoy the game however you want, not just being stuck into one (what ended up to be) insanely difficult progression path.

But really, we agree with Draztal. Don't go for the TL;DR version. Don't be lazy. Read the post.

After the break.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

Breakfast Topic: Looking forward to Mists of Pandaria, back on the past

Breakfast Topic Looking forward to MoP, and looking back on the past
In my experience, the time between expansions tends to be a time of anticipation and reflection. We all wonder what the next expansion will hold and whether it will be as good as something from the past that we hold in very high esteem. Browsing the latest blue posts yesterday, I saw a forum thread on the EU forums that poses a question along those lines: What are your best memories of your time playing WoW?

The original poster describes how they felt when they first arrived in Shattrath City, explaining that they had only just started playing around the release of The Burning Crusade and made reaching the city their goal. As for why this quaint little forum post showed up while searching for blue posts, it seems Draztal had some warm, fuzzy memories to share about playing a night elf and seeing Hellfire Peninsula.

For me, my fondest memories involve completely owning the Alliance in Alterac Valley during The Burning Crusade. My then boyfriend and our best friend would grind honor together when we weren't doing 3v3 arena, and working together in a battleground, even a large one like AV, had a tremendous impact on the course of the game. As a disc priest, I've never had as much fun playing WoW as I did when I was PvPing with my friends.

Of course, looking back on it now, it's hard to ignore that even in those good times, there were bad times. My boyfriend and I were going through a long, drawn-out break-up, the best friend was constantly whining about wanting to quit, and resto druids were really stupidly overpowered. It sort of makes me think that even our fondest memories sometimes have downsides that we let ourselves forget.

That in turn makes me wonder why we as a playerbase get so worked up over things we don't like, when reading about the features of the next expansion. Does it really matter that everything in Mists of Pandaria isn't absolutely perfect? Maybe it doesn't ... Maybe I'll still have lots of good memories in this expansion (even if resto druids are still overpowered).

What do you think?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

The danger of assuming personal experiences to be universal

The danger of making personal experience universal
Whether or not you can believe it, there are players right now who have not finished regular Dragon Soul. Some of them raid less often, some of them started later, some of them lost players, and some of them just raid more slowly than you.

And yes, you may be a better raider or have a better raid group than they do, a more skilled collection of people. You also might have a better class comp or have gotten lucky on a few occasions when they didn't. Some groups lost key players at the worst possible time, had real-life issues to contend with, or simply started later than everyone else.

Why do I bring this up? This forum thread on the EU forums, where Draztal ( who is rapidly becoming one of my favorite CMs) is constantly forced to deal with a mindset that does not seem to understand that each raiding group's experience is personal to that group and cannot always be extended to the game or all its players as a whole. Now, not every poster in that thread has that issue; there are some good ones in there, and you should read it. But it's a mindset I see over and over again.

The game is large, and no two raid groups have the same experience playing it. Some raid groups loved tier 11; others were bored or hated the fights. Some raids had fun in Firelands; others found it repetitive or disliked the zone's tendency to be all one color. (I still say Bastion of Twilight had exactly the same problem, but that was alleviated by its being one of three raids at launch.) Some folks have enjoyed Dragon Soul; others dislike the mechanics or the use of Wyrmrest art assets.

Having these differences of opinion is a fine thing and can be good for the game and its community -- when you acknowledge that they exist, and when you realize that your own strongly held opinion about the raid finder, heroic modes in raiding, or the superiority of this fight or that fight is rooted in personal experience to some extent and that experience will never be shared with everyone. That goes for things you love and things you hate equally.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Cataclysm

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