Bring on the loot pinatas!

I stopped playing WoW actively a few months after Cataclysm because things just got stale.  I did all of the 80-85 leveling content twice.  The dungeons, in my opinion, are not really as good as the ICC ones for replayability and the raids never really grabbed hold of my interest like ICC’s — maybe because of the story.   I made it a personal goal to check the game out again once they add more content and make things easier.

Why easier?  It’s the same thing that happened around the time that ICC 5-mans came out.  Once Blizzard made it so that gear was easy to get and doing just about anything was rewarding then it was more fun to log in and devote time.  If I log in and spend a week and get nothing tangible to show for it, then I feel like I’m wasting my time in a game like WoW.  WoW is all about the gear treadmill, but who would stay on that treadmill without ever seeing results?

The new ZG and ZA have been made into 5-man dungeons that give epic loot akin to the ICC 5’s.  Awesome dungeons, great looking loot and great loot to get people into the raids easier.  There’s also the update to the speed at which you gain Valor Points from dungeons.  It’s no longer a heroic-a-day system.  Instead, you can do up to 7 per week which means that if I miss a day I can make them up later in the week.  This helps someone with a schedule like mine to not feel pressured — when I’m pressured by a game to log in I shut down and move on.

Look, I know I do not prefer the gear grinds and I know that WoW is still the same regardless of making loot easier to get.  I know that I’m done with the raider mentality but if I’m going to be wasting my time in a gear grind game then it might as well be one where the epics come raining out of pinatas rather than a grind that requires a lot of time.

I’ll give it a try since my account was never canceled.  Maybe it will be just like the resurgence I had from April-August last year.  Those were some great times and heck, I have a few months to burn.


  • I’m glad Blizz makes changes like this because they realize what their game is. It’s a 7 year old game that Yo-Yo’s folks back in from time to time.

    As much as I do like their changes it still DUMBFOUNDS me that they can’t come up with some sort of system to get folks ata cities and into the world. Maybe that’s what Archaeology was supposed to be? Just want something to make me go exploring and kill some alliance over. Some of the best world PvP for me was fighting for herb nodes. But now that those prices have dropped there isn’t much fighting for them anymore.

    Just give us something to fight for! Anyone have any suggestions?

    In the meantime still Loving LoL, but am getting the WoW itch again!

  • I actually prefer the 5 man dungeons, and specially the heroic modes, in Cataclysm. They are actually HARD (aka HEROIC) again, like they were in TBC, and not faceroll material like in most of WotLK.

    All the other changes are good, specially the fact that the dailies can be done anytime you want during a week instead of being restricted to a single day. That’s great changes for the more casual gamer. The increase in valor is also not a bad thing.

  • Was that really necessary? Wouldn’t it be more prudent to encourage Blizzard to innovate a bit instead of coming up with some grand idea to increase the epic-bandwidth even more?

  • I have “several” friends that play wow, that I need to be able to “carry” in 5 man heroics. I couldn’t do it in Cataclysm so I quit.

    If it becomes easier, me and my friends can resub.

  • They should really release this patch soon.. I want my Shamans new AoE!

    And of course the new heroics. I loved both ZA and ZG, and they both had cool item designs, mostly ZA tho.


  • @nils: You know it will never happen. I stopped hoping for WoW to change a long time ago. So instead of it being arduous and the same, I’d rather it be easier and the same. It is what it is and since it’s not going to change I’d rather have it be a more rewarding experience in the time I devote to playing.

  • Is this your way of saying that you finally realized Rift is a waste of time and you might as well play WoW instead of a WoW-clone?

    Because that’s how I feel…

  • I realized that and included it in my very first public post about Rift. It’s always been the game to play that is like WoW if you don’t want to play WoW. As soon as you want to play WoW, it’s not worth playing anymore. Lucky for me, I can have both active at the same time.

    Patch 4.1, whenever it comes, will land a huge blow to Rift. I predict server merges when 4.2 arrives.

  • It doesn’t sound to me like you want your MMO ‘easier’, just that you want to be rewarded for the time you put in no matter how small that time commitiment is, rgiht? Don’t give them the idea we want it ‘easier’, we just want the rewards to be more in line with the effort. Maybe WoW won’t change and they’ll continue to make things easier but don’t give all these developers the idea that you want all your future MMOs to be ‘easy’. You want your MMO to be closer to input=output.

  • Let me clarify: I want WoW to be easier in the sense that their model sucks already. If it’s going to be a grind for gear at least make it a rewarding one.

    MMO’s that are -not- the WoW model should not be easier. I like traditional difficulty. If it’s the WoW model though, give it to me straight up.

  • So, if it’s the ‘WoW model’, the ‘successful, 13million subscriber model’ these devs want then make it easy? If you want a niche game failure, make it ‘traditional difficulty’? You’re killing me here.

  • I think the best is yet to come for Rift. The devs are just so on top of customer concerns – heck even my simple suggestion to turn autorun off after you complete a ‘jump to enemy’ ability (like Bullrun) got implemented. And 4.1 introduced more new content so I dont understand your concerns about server merges and customers leavng in droves. There is no way I could go back to plastic sheen environments and lawn gnome NPCs after a game like Rift. Not that WoW isn’t fun, but it doesnt do anything better then Rift so why bother?

  • Keen you are SO hard to understand! You should really try and be more clear! ahahahhaah


  • So, having not played Rift, just wondering – is everyone that is playing Rift someone who has played wow? Given the way they have marketed the game, it’s possible the vast majority are either former or still current wow players.

  • @ILkRehp: I don’t know how I can make it any easier to understand. When it comes to gear grinds, gear treadmills, raiding to get gear to get more gear… I like it when the gear is easier to get. This has nothing to do with anything but gear.

    That does not apply to any other game type or model. I never said niche. DAOC and EQ were not niche, they were industry leaders. Darkfall is niche. Fallen Earth is niche. I do not speak to them.

    @Gnome: Mind you 4.2 is many months away and thus so are possible merges, I believe the population in Rift has already begun to slightly dip and will dip more with 4.1 of WoW.

    @Sleepysam: I would say without a doubt that the majority of Rift players are former or even current WoW players biding time until either WoW improves with 4.1/4.2 (patches) or GW2/SWTOR come out.

  • Sorry to say this but I can’t stand the WoW model which means I’m not going back to WoW and I canceled my Rift sub before spending anything other than buying the game.

    I posted this on the FoH forums, I’m tired of the WoW type treadmill for gear. Every game since WoW has included it and I hate it. MMO’s came out of D&D and in D&D you didn’t grind dungeons for gear, you went out and adventured and if you got a piece of gear or leveled that was great. Gear was always behind your character and their abilities.

    In most of the original MMO’s this was also the case. UO and AC, it was NOT about a gear grind, it was about fleshing out your character and their abilities.

    It was also about adventuring and doing major quests for items and such. I loved my Hunter’s epic quest in WoW way back when and I cannot understand why things like this aren’t still put in their game.

    Finally I want a world to play in, WoW has become nothing more than a gaming lobby. People sit in Org or Stormwind and just que for instances. Once you reach level 10, you never have to leave your city. Me, I want a world that’s constantly changing, that the devs add quests, items, mobs and dungeons too continually and it feels like I’m in a world, not just a gaming lobby.

  • Biggest shame about WoW’s world, is that it is a really sweet world. There just isn’t need to go see it right now.

  • WoW as been out 6 years. rift a month, rift right now as pretty much everything WoW as. what happened to giving a game a chance.

    WoW will do what they have always done, they will hook the ppl back when something like rift comes out. they dont do anything for 2 years then bam they start giving ppl what they want again, just sad hour it works.

    keen i cant help but think you are all but done with mmorpgs, you love the kind of game you just cant let go. you will be saying the samethings about GW2/SWTOR, you will just want something more. nothing wrong with that. games dont work like that now.

    thank you WoW for making mmorpgs what they are now, and the players the way they are.

  • Not even Blizzard makes good on their PvP promises. Why should I ever believe another company saying they can do PvP right using WoW’s same model?

    WoW is better at being WoW than other games. If you don’t want Blizzard to be the game everyone goes back to then stop copying WoW. Make something new, take the industry on a new path, do something intelligent and thoughtful instead of being exact copies.

  • I didn’t mind the difficulty of the new 5-mans, what was a pain in the ass was how LONG it took to do them (I say took because I am no longer actively playing WoW, except to do my weekly arena games). I know there is somewhat of a correlation there, but it’s not completely direct and I think you can make good, albeit challenging, 5-mans that take about 40-60 min on average. This is what I liked about the WotLK heroics. With Cata, when people first started doing them it would take hours… I think my first run at one took about 3.5 hours and we didn’t even finish it. Now most of them run in the 1.5-2 hours range it seems, which is still too long for me most of the time.

    Seriously…7 bosses in a heroic? I don’t care if 3 of them are optional…that’s too damn many…whose idea was that anyway?

    I agree with Damage…how come no one makes games like that anymore?

  • “WoW is better at being WoW than other games. If you don’t want Blizzard to be the game everyone goes back to then stop copying WoW. Make something new, take the industry on a new path, do something intelligent and thoughtful instead of being exact copies.”

    they copy what works and makes money. these games cost so much to make now, no ones going to take the chance on something new. you better get used to it. rift just shows that, they have done it better then anyone else so far.

    we all know WoW is not new, they just took something from every game before it and made it work. i mean just look at the guild quests in the next WoW patch. right out of rift lol.

    blizzard have us by the balls and they know it. when the new game fails, they know we will be back. lets add something shiny in the next patch and we will get some suckers back.

  • Wanting things to be easy is what put WoW where it is now, to be honest. It’s nice to be able to log in for 2 hours and get some results. But the consequence to that type of play is that it’s all you get. A time waster. Something good for spending an hour or two but nothing more. Difficulty in a game is good. Spending a week to get a piece of gear from a very difficult dungeon is more rewarding than spamming random heroic x to get a full set.

    There’s a very nice sense of accomplishment when you finally down a boss you’ve been stuck on for days. The loot you get with it is just a bonus. I guess that’s why I’m always going to be a raider, though. As much as I hate WoW now. It’s because it’s so damn easy that I do. It stops being fun when I stop having to work for what I have.

  • stan: I would say, though, that NOT taking any risk and just copy WoW (right down to even something so trivial like how the first crafting tier is max at 75 etc etc.) or improve a little bit from WoW is not the way to go in the long run.

    I’ll admit I’m quite bored of WoW. People go around suggesting Rift to me. I tried it. Saw how it’s more or less WoW with less content, and felt very upset. I mean, this is what we got out of a company that is actually quite capable and seemed to have potential? This?

    If Blizzard just made WoW a copy of Everquest with “very little improvement” (like what Trions did to WoW), I doubt the game would be as big as it is right now.

  • Is it JUST the model here? I haven’t played WoW in a way, but what I can gather here is that the WOTLK and CATA model is far off that of original and/or TBC that making the game easier is much more effective for the new model.

    Unless you’re saying that the older models were worse because they were harder?
    Which to me is hard to believe since the original and TBC is when WoW had its biggest growth. Either way the models has changed.

    @ stan

    Cannot just compare WoW and Rift like, ‘lol 1 month vs 6 years’. Since Rift has been in development for years already, while WoW has had to keep up both service and development. I guess that is why WoW and Blizzard itself is so different now, it has become a service company and not a development one. Meh, at least they are better then the overrated Valve.
    Either way, Rift has just as much responsibility to the genre as WoW does. And for some odd reason Blizzard does not like going into its past and letting players relive it. Which it should IMO, since they are pretty much throwing away millions of dollars worth of original content (which in itself is of a slightly different design).

  • You can talk about the WoW model and how it’s setup and compare it from xpac to xpac and you’ll see that along every step of the way their model has changed. They made everything easier after Vanilla, as a blanket statement. The over tuned some content to try and make up for it in BC, dumbed it down again, tuned up LK content somewhere in the middle of the xpac. All the while they made things incredibly easy for the casual player to come in and either make their epics, grind them out in dungeons via drops, or purchasable via a currency garnered from said instance grinds. Reducing the grind needed for all players to have the “shiniest” gear that only the top 40 people on any given server would sport in Ironforge/Orgrimmar back in Vanilla.

    In Cata they again changed the model but they tuned EVERYTHING up. DOUG mentioned needing to be “carried” by his friends and that 5-mans were too hard and that was, as admitted by Blizzard, the model for Cataclysm release. They wanted a feel similar to that of the ORIGINAL vanilla 10m dungeons (Stratholme, Scholomance, L/UBRS) where things were very hard and healing was difficult to the point where if every one didn’t play well, they’d get stuck. They wanted to sort the “casuals” out from the “hardcore” crowd. And somewhere in there, PVP had to be balanced.

    It’s hard to come at a game like WoW or EQ from one specific perspective because there are so many ways you can play the game and you’ll never catch every one with a blanket statement but contrary to that, that seems to be the model that Blizzard is following now. Slowly balancing raid content for that 1% that will conquer on heroic mode while dedicating most of their time to making sure that the largest market share can enjoy the game at the pace they want. They’ll never please every one this way and they’ll lose the dedicated market to one aspect of the game when something new comes out.

    A stock market style MMO could probably steal 5% of the WoW subscription base if they could come up with a model that allows you to pocket huge sums of money while virtually screwing some out of their retirement funds.

  • @ Anne

    WoW was in development 5 years before it come out, about the same for rift.

  • @Stan/Anne
    Development time doesn’t matter. Rift isn’t competing with Vanilla WoW, it is against Cata WoW. How Rift compared to WoW at launch doesn’t matter.

    Furthermore nearly every MMO has done as well, or better, at launch than WoW did. WoW at launch should no longer be a discussion… not to mention the amount of people who actually played at launch is alot less than people who claim they did.

  • I don’t have any problem with folks saying to give Rift time. There is nothing wrong with that statement. It is a new game and they may indeed have plans to change things. I understand these games cost a crap load to make and getting some income has to be a good thing.

    BUT…until they do then I’m also not going to treat it like it’s done either. So I will wait and see. Right now it’s a “WoW clone” to me, but if they change it up and add some stuff that interests me then I’ll get into it.

    I guess I never understood why there has to be a war against these games. If you enjoy it, play it, if you don’t, don’t. Not a hard concept to me!

    The other thing is to me it seems that WoW could be beyond EPIC if they could just figure out how to get players to explore in the world. They have so many great pieces, but when sitting around in a city (with nothing to do) is your most common option, something is wrong.

  • @keen But whats the point of going back to wow at all? why not just stick with Kunark monk for example.. I been wow free for years now and really find it hard to understand the draw of it.

  • I’ll continue leveling my EQ Monk but, like I said when I first mentioned him, it takes a ton of time to play EQ that I’m not sure I’m ready to commit to an older game.

    Why go back to WoW? It’s easy, it’s fairly fun, and if I’m going to play a WoW model game it may as well be WoW.

  • Quote – “WoW is all about the gear treadmill” a few months ago when you were gushing about WoW I made the same statement, maybe next time you’ll listen to me and save yourself 3 mos of your life ;-).

  • I’m confused…. you think I didn’t know it was all about the gear grind when I went back and played? I’ve known since 2005. I play until it catches up with me then I stop until there’s a fresh environment to play in again or it becomes easier. It’s a cycle.

  • You really should have a FAQ on your site so you don’t need to answer the same questions 100 times. Ahahahaha.

  • I think A lot more people would enjoy Rift if they stop playing it like WoW.

    When into Rift the last thing on my mind is a gear grind.

    The day it becomes nothing more than sitting in the main cities, queuing up for some cross server group that ends up being nothing more then a DPS race with the kiddies spamming their parsers is the day I’ll happily cancel.

    Well that and when GW2 comes out 😉

  • I hate the parser and I don’t want addons. It always starts small, then you get addons like DBM that tells you exactly what to do.

    A week ago a friend and I were trying to duo a Rift… we got to the final stage. He was on a Bard and I was on a Shaman. We fought this boss 4 or 5 times, each time dying, before we figured out the ‘trick’ to beating him. We had tried changing specs, tactics, etc.

    Addons like DBM would have told us the first time how to beat it. Now I know you can say “well don’t use it then” which isn’t an option. As Gevlon would say, I’m a social gamer. I feel obligated to not be an ignorant shitbag when I play. MMO communities aren’t exactly forgiving of artifical difficulties you place upon yourself when it effects their gameplay.

  • @ Epiny

    Honestly, I think addons like DBM are why it’s been so hard for Blizzard to find that “sweet spot” for difficulty in raids/5-mans. On the one hand people are spoon-fed what they need to do by the addons, on the other the complexity and difficulty of the content is designed with the idea in mind that everyone is using the addons, to the point that the content is almost undoable without them. It forces the developers to come up with these really convoluted mechanics to try and keep the fights interesting or challenging.

  • I think Balthazar’s point is very true. I had not thought of that when I posted a few months ago about convoluted mechanics.

  • @Epiny: I agree, Addons are one of the many banes of WoW’s existence. I think that’s why I currently like Rift. They’re not supporting them, yet. Yet being the key term. When Rift does it, it’ll be in the same place. The players will demand a mommy addon that tells them when to get out of the fire. Something to hold their hands through content. WoW tries to combat it by developing with them in mind, but it only makes it worse.

    It’s also killed the raiding community in WoW. There’s less communication in raids now because of addons that will do it for you. I remember vanilla. Where addons still made it easy, but there was still communication. We spent time before fights to make sure everyone was ready. To give refreshers on what needed to be known. There’s almost none of that now. It’s become a ready-check-go experience.

    However, you can’t do away with addons. People have grown to accustomed to them. It’s always nicest, though, when a patch releases and addons stop working. Then people actually have to think before they act. As short-lived as it may be. It’s our own fault for creating the tools to dumb down content, but it’s also the fault of developers for allowing that much freedom to do so. Do you remember how easy the original Decursive made it in raids? Do you remember what it was like without it? I know I do.

  • Not all addons are bad, actually the vast majority are good and don’t impact anyone else’s gameplay.

    Even DBM is not totally bad… the part of it that displays when a mob casts a specific spell in big on the screen, with an audio warning, is a boon for people like me who are color blind and don’t always see every little details that happens during a raid fight where nukes and spell effects fly all over the screen. And I don’t think it dumbs down a fight, since that info is already available, albeit just displayed in small in the combat log and/or by a visual effect.

    What is bad in DBM in my opinion are the timers. Addons being able to use timers dumb down encounters and indeed force the developers to add harder mechanics to compensate.

  • I would say this regarding the addons, though: It’s partly what makes WoW as big as it is right now.

    Think about it: the addon aspect of the game creates a VERY big sub-community for the game; the addon developer community. I can’t think of any other game that has such strong sub-community. Well, not counting those indy games like Minecraft and stuff though as I’m clueless about them. Let’s just focus on the mainstream here.

    Imagine if one day Blizz removes the addon system from the game, do you think the game would remain as big? I’m not talking about the users who depend on the addons here but more on the developer community itself.

  • I really fail to see how anyone continues to play WoW. You may not care for the alternatives, and that’s fine, but there’s plenty of other games out there to pass the time.

    So, rehashing the same dungeons again, adding more items, big whoop. WoW has a lot to like about it, or better yet, did, it’s really long in the tooth, and I don’t believe I could bring myself to log in again, I fail to see how anyone else can.

  • The main difference between WoW and Rift to me, is that playing WoW felt like a job, and Rift feels more like a game. In Wow i would feel cheated if i didn’t complete all my dailies, dungeon runs, etc. Maybe it was my personality but falling behind was not an option.
    In Rift im never sure what im going to do when i login. Questing, crafting, warfronts, etc. I am finding it more enjoyable, and less addicting. Is Rift ground breaking, no. But i already have a full time job, don’t need another one just so i can afford enough shinies to be ready for the next grind.
    Waiting for Guild Wars 2 and hoping they can build a bridge between DAOC and WoW, keeping my fingers crossed.

  • @Cacheelma
    It sucks that you are color blind, I’m sure that makes playing games harder… (i.e. Red=bad green=good type encounters). However on my Tanking Druid in WoW I would queue up for most dungeons without ever reading about them. I had faith in DBM to tell me what to do and when to do it in order to complete the run. I would say 90% of the time that worked. If the majority of the gaming community played without DBM the game would be harder. DBM takes all the encounter information that could get missed in a chat log and displays it as big as possible in the center of your screen. Having to look at your chat window during a fight takes more skill then not having to… by skill I mean multi tasking abilities.

    However there are certain addons I like. WoW and Rift have very convoluted UIs. There is simply too much on the screen. Sometimes you know what I like to do… I like to actually see the game I’m playing and not my UI/HUD. The addons that consolidate your party/raid frames into smaller less intrusive designs I enjoy and the addons that let me alter the layout of my bars I enjoy. Now I know this is subjective, everyone probably has an addon they like and some they hate. I’m not 100% against addons, however if losing the addons I like is the price of not having to deal with the ones I don’t I’ll live with that.

    That’s why I like Rift. That is also why I enjoyed AoC and Aion at launch. There is less pressure placed on you to be amazing right out of the gate because the games haven’t been datamined to death and you don’t have 15 ‘required’ addons the community expects you to use.

  • @Crackbone For me it’s all about the PvP. Sure there is no world PvP, but I’m also in the minority when I feel the big battles of Tauren Mill got old. I do enjoy the E-Sport side of WoW. That’s really what WoW PvP is so I treat the PvP side like MMO counterstrike. PvE stuff is fine and entertaining but I just can’t complete to many dungeons more then a couple times before I get the shivers…. but wrecking folks in Battlegrounds never gets old for me.

    I also think Blizz does a really nice job constantly working on pvp balance, which is another huge plus.

    I just need to spend more time working towards Arena and Rated BG’s. I never treat it as a grind…I just like destroying folks and winning, ahahha.

  • “I also think Blizz does a really nice job constantly working on pvp balance, which is another huge plus.”
    Oh yeah, they do a nice job constantly nerfing all the other aspects of the game by balancing it for the ridiculous mini-game that are Arenas. Excellent job, Blizzard.

  • ahahahah. I guess it depends how you look at it. I’d call constantly adding “new” instances that are just slightly different/rehashed mechanics with a different color dragon a “mini game”.

  • it’s possible the vast majority are either former or still current wow players.

    Umm I would say 90% of MMO players period are current or former WoW players. honestly what MMO player did not play WoW?

  • @Max: Precisely, although I think the point was meant to convey more than merely playing but having dug one’s heels in and really played the game thoroughly.

  • “The main difference between WoW and Rift to me, is that playing WoW felt like a job, and Rift feels more like a game. In Wow i would feel cheated if i didn’t complete all my dailies, dungeon runs, etc. ”

    I don’t think this is tied to WoW or Rift or anything, but personally, I hate daily quests. They feel like such a chore. I understand completely that they’re basically a little bonus for coming on and grinding a bit at a reasonable pace.

    But there’s just something psychological that makes me both see it as unproductive work, and as a kind of ball-and-chain. ‘Ugh, gotta log in to this game to do the dailies…’ I hate them with a passion. And I never do them beyond the first time. But then I’m missing out on a lot of rewards and long story short I tend to quit any game when I reach an area rich in daily quests.

  • I agree. I wonder how many folks unsubbed right after doing a daily! ahahah.

  • I blame my schedule and it being finals week next week for how little I play Rift, but I have to admit the quest grind and the dailies do -not- give me any incentive to log in. Same with WoW.

  • I actually really like the crafting dailies in Rift. Having that rare chance at getting an epic plaque towards a nice recipe is more fun to me than grinding a boss over and over for it.

    However, yes they have Dungeon dailies, and like others here I’m not fond of regurgitated content made harder (expert dungeons) just to grind out some gear. I’m in no hurry to get those overly exaggerated shoulders that would make me look like a football player anyways.

  • Yeah the daily crafting quests in Rift are rather enjoyable, & it even makes sense when you bring an order of new shoes to a quest hub. While its not epic or anything, they are good for some extra XP & crafting mats. I even encountered some world PVP over a death rift while traveling to deliver some boots.

  • “To me, the reward is overcoming the challenge. No challenge? No reward.” – SmakenDahen

    That’s like saying, I hit myself in the head with a hammer, because when I stop there is no more pain.

    Sometimes the reward is – the reward.

  • “That’s like saying, I hit myself in the head with a hammer, because when I stop there is no more pain.”

    Well, his handle is SmakenDahed…

  • The name was intended to be humorous, I’m happy it wasn’t too challenging for you. 🙂

    No hammers or pain involved unless knowing how to play a game causes you pain (assuming you’re not face rolling?). I don’t mean to sound like one of those L2Play kids, but really.. it’s basic. It’s one of the easiest games out there short of Rift, which I see you don’t like because it’s too easy.

    Use crowd control.
    Don’t stand in the bad.

    So hard.