Daily Archives: September 13, 2011

So, about Class Feedback and Firelands nerfs ^^

WARNING: I include this at the start of writing this post as I am rather narked atm and honestly have no idea how ranty this will get. it may end up not too bad, or it may be pretty bad. However, this particular post isn’t actually aimed at my readers, it’s more a way of me venting my spleen >< If you read it and don’t like it, sorry but you were warned.

The last 24 hours have seen the arrival of a couple of bits of news via forums and the like. One of them is pretty cool and I was rather pleased with, the second was rather less pleasing.

Class Feedback
Firstly, Blizzard opened up their class feedback yesterday and invited us, the players, to comment within a structured post about we felt regarding our classes, their abilities, current playability and so on. As I like to see myself as a active player with good experience regarding my class and roles, I took the time to respond without waffling and to put down my thoughts about how I feel the druid class is and what I dislike (no permanent ToL 😦 ) and what I like (the general feel of my healing). I mentioned a few other things I would like to see (better choices for last few talent points, ability to have SM refresh LB with tying it to NB and ofc – A PERMANENT TREE FORM 😀 ). Hopefully, within my few sentences I have fulfilled my little obligation to further the refinement of the druid class, while also making a couple of my own suggestions of what I would like personally.

I then sat back and flicked through some of the other responses on both the EUa nd the US forums. This is where the angsty emo side started to emerge. On the whole most people have done what I have done, and responded sensibly and with (hopefully) constructive comments (both positive and negative) as well offering their personal suggestions. However, on both forums a small minority seem intent on screwing up the class I love as well as giving seriously mixed messages to the developers. The primary way of doing this seems to be a wish of some people for homogenisation of the classes. This has ranged from people wanting more direct heals or more reliance on direct heals (i.e. make them way more powerful), to wanting particular abilities or CDs – I have people crying out for a raid wide damage reduction spell (like disc priests get), an ability by which our heals also heal the current LB roller (kinda like a paladin beacon) and various other copies of other class spells.

Currently we have 4 different class (and 5 specs) that can all be used as healers. They are all good in their own way, and they all have their disadvantages as well as perks. The main thing here is that we have the CHOICE of what to take. Either in the sense of what to play or level, or as a raid leader the choice of what to take to help out the team most. This choice is down to fact that while all the different specs and classes can heal, they do it in their own unique way, and each plays differently to the others. Personally I particularly enjoy my druid and shaman, quite like my priest holy spec and the holy paladin, but really don’t like my priests discipline spec. This is because they all work in different ways and as they say “different strokes for different folks”.

Now as raid leader and so on, there are plenty of times I would have been glad of a priests uber-bubble or similar and there are times when something like a non-self Barkskin may have saved the day and stopped a wipe. However, sometimes you just take the hit and move on. Cataclysm already saw the blurring of some of the lines between classes (Timewarp? DK Battle rez? etc) and as a result 10 man teams can now go into battle with a more complete collection of buffs, which is no bad thing – but if you keep down that road too far you end up with only 4 classes; tank, healer, ranged dps and melee dps. As with everything, once you start then it is a slippery slope down and it is too easy to metaphorically bang your foot onto the accelerator and laugh manically as you careen wildly down the hill with no idea of where you will stop or what state you will be in.

This becomes especially frustrating when switching forums and see a lot of general whining about loss of uniqueness between classes and the rampant homogenisation! :O Does anyone realise how stupid it is to say “I want a bubble like a priest! OMG! Blizzard! Stop making everyone the same! ><“

So please, will all the druids out there begging for abilities that other classes and specs have, just quit it. Instead of greedily coveting a discs bubble, or the shield the shaman has, focus on what new stuff would enhance us and how our current abilities could be tweaked and improved. Just whatever you do, for the love of Elune QUIT BEGGING FOR OTHER CLASSES ABILITIES!

Firelands Nerfs – Including Hardmodes.
So on to my next issue I have atm – the incoming nerfs to Firelands. Now before I start I will clarify one thing – I am not a hardcore player or raider or anything, sure I spend a lot of time in the game but for actual raiding, we are lucky to get 2x  1/2 hours a week. Thats about 3 hours per week of raid time, which in Firelands with all the trash soon disappears. So even if I play a lot, I am definitely casual when it comes to raiding – and yes it shows. I just managed to down Arthas the week of the 4.0 patch (damn, we were soooo close the previous week as well ><), I only managed to get all of T11 content finished after the last waves of nerfs and currently I am sitting at 2/7 for normal Firelands.

This lack of speedy progression and such would surely have me crying out for nerfs you would think? Well, some of them maybe. I understand perfectly that Blizzard wishes everyone to see the content and that is a very cool idea. Everyone pays the same monthly subscription and so everyone should see the game. This is fine and thats why there are normal modes, these allow everyone to clear out a raid and see the cutscenes, kill the final boss etc. However, some people prefer more of a challenge and this is where Heroic modes come in.

It is argued that these are simply normal fights with extra damage, mechanics etc; that is not the issue here – the point they are above and beyond the level of focus/commitment/whatever required for normal mode. Personally I don’t mind the nerfs to normals as it gives me more chance to be able to see the end of the raid tier while it is still current content rather than finishing it when there is a new challenge out there. However, these nerfs to heroics seem to a little excessive – surely the normal modes and subsequent nerfs are plenty to allow whose who want to see the endgame have the chance.

As I said above regarding the class changes; it’s a slippery slope, where do you stop? What’s the goal? Soloable raids so 100% of the players at the level can see it if they wish? That sounds silly, but if the line isn’t drawn somewhere then where does it all stop? At the moment, the blue post regarding these nerfs says that the changes will be comparable to those made to the T11 normals when T12 came out. These changes were an approx 20% nerf across the board (boss had 20% less hp, their damage was reduced by 20% etc). This was a sweeping change at the end of a tier to normal modes and was still considered generally badly thought out. Now it looks like they are applying a similar change MID TIER to both modes.

As with many things regarding WoW, there are a few camps of people. Broadly speaking there are the top XXX% of raiders, who don’t care because they have seen it, done it, go the t-shirt and who don’t care if other people have the gear, cheesemint or whatever. You then have what is probably the majority of WoW players who either don’t raid or who are happy with there raiding as it is currently, sure a few tweaks might be nice but it is quite fun anyway (this i my catergory, I am currently happy with MY raiding).

Then you have a vocal, but probably quite small minority – these usually seem to be wannabe HC raiders who feel they are special and entitled to something because they want it. They cry out when “casuals” can buy gear with emblems – “but I spent 6 months grinding for that and now they can just buy it! WAAAA!”, they dislike “lower” players having access to similar raids, gear etc – but at the same time complain because they are not good/dedicated enough etc to finish hardmodes, and so want them brought down to a level where they can complete them and then sit there stroking their epeen while linking a Heroic Raggy cheesemint in trade. Similarly, are the players who think they are good enough and therefore entitled to complete the normal modes but can’t for whatever reason. Again, these people like to vocally complain that XXX is too hard, that they deserve XXXXX or whatever. There is a pervading attitude that everyone is entitled to everything NOW with as little effort as possible just because they want it.

I would like to do hard modes, I would like to be sure of a Ragnaros kill while it is current, I would like some rather  nice gear from Firelands. However, everything is a choice and a balance – I choose to play with my friends and my guild and progress  at whatever speed we progress at. With that in mind I have refused offers from other guilds looking for a resto druid but who could offer me the chance at faster progression. I choose to only raid the times I do, I have other commitments and IRL stuff. The difference is though, I accept that for whatever reason some of my in-game wished wil not be granted yet. I may not see Raggy until he is nerfed to the ground and we can 3 man him at level 90,95,100 or whenever. I feel no entitlement though that I should have it NOW, there is no QQ to Blizzard about how they have to cater for ME because I want something.

If you can do hardmodes then cool, well done 🙂 If you can’t then get better, move guilds etc, do whatever it takes to be able to do it – but realise it’s always a choice; YOUR choice. You cannot make your choices and then cry to Blizzard because your choices didn’t get you what you want. Sometimes the choices are hard; liking ditching your mate because frankly his dps sucks compared to the other guildie who will help you progress OR not ditching the mate but possibly being stuck at a certain boss for a while. Sometimes though, people just are not good enough for certain things – I have sod all co-ordination for sports. So when I played basketball or whatever with my mates I had fun playing with friends even though they were way better at it than me. Also, no amount of teaching, practise or anything would make me good at it, and I accepted that. WoW is the same – sometimes you have skills, sometimes you don’t. Sometimes they can be improved, sometimes they can’t. You just have to realise where you fall and what you have to do to improve or accept that you can’t. You cannot whine and want stuff changed to be easier for you just so that you can feel good about yourself.

Whats even worse is that while I have bitched on now for 2014 words, my gripes are with attitudes – the attitudes I am raging about are from people who need to feel good about themselves and have a sense of accomplishment in a computer game, and that is truly bad.

 *gets off soapbox and puts the megaphone away*

Oh, and before anyone gets the wrong idea – this is not directed at anyone currently clearing HM content who welcomes the nerfs, or thinks they are good, needed or whatever. It is aimed at those who have been crying for them because they think they should be able to clear HM just because they want to regardless of commitment, skill etc. I am not tarring anyone with any brush. If you read this and know you have posted up crying that stuff is too hard and you want it easier so you can feel special then I am talking to you 🙂