A Balanced Look at Warlords of Draenor
Here’s what I thought of Warlords of Draenor.
I feel like people are so quick to go to twitter with their rage and disappointment, and what happens as a result is that we get a severely skewed image of this game that we all love, and its latest expansion.
What you should know, is that this is not a ‘oh but Warlords was truly great’ post, but rather my attempt at trying to break down the parts that I enjoyed vs the parts that I did not enjoy, in an attempt to give a more balanced and therefor fair view.
Good: The awesome draw that was launch night. Hundreds of players filling the skies. The all nighter that we had fun doing, despite all the:
Bad: Launch night server crashes. Not fun. Being unable to use the garrison for the first week, without fear of disconnecting.
Good: The Garrison once it was sorted out technically, and the sense of *home* that it provided much like Sunsong Ranch had in mid-late Mists of Pandaria. The garrison was a much better take on ‘player housing’ than Sunsong Ranch was, and it also improved on the usability factor – in that they removed the annoying vermin/hawks/weeds/tentacles that would slow down your farming, and instead gave us the podlings, who drop *more* mats and who we are thus happier to see!
Bad: Once you were home, you felt compelled to stay there. I have to say though – that I felt this was more down to the fact that there was no flying at max level. The two issues compounded one another, and had they introduced flying at max level with launch, we would have less ‘rage against the garrison’.
Good: Garrisons allowed us to collect herbs and minerals from garrison buildings, on characters with neither of these professions. This was incredibly good! However:
Bad: This meant that we felt compelled to do this everyday on all our alts, and locked up the professions with daily cooldowns making it impossible for those of us that like to hoard mats and dominate the market with professions. This compulsion, isn’t due to bad design in my opinion, but the players choice.
Good: They eased up on the profession lock-downs with rush orders for garrison profession buildings, and with the introduction of Primal Spirit based crafting.
Bad: The fact that we could now speed up garrison work orders with ‘rush orders’ meant that we had to keep returning to the garrison to maximise on materials for end-game crafting.
Good: The introduction of the bag sorting tool, as well as the reagent bank, AND the extra tab in void storage! I feel like Blizzard really addressed our problem with bag space here. The reagent bank in particular is really helpful for storing raw materials that a particular character needs for their manufacturing professions.
Bad: For me personally, a second void storage tab, is still insufficient on characters that I play frequently. However:
Good: We know that the long awaited transmogrification wardrobe is coming in Legion! I really hope it lives up to expectations. Remember to prepare for the transmogpocalypse!
Good: New raids! New flexibility for Normal and Heroic modes! 10-30 players is ideal for most guilds!
Bad: 20 man raid size, was very difficult to maintain for many guilds, and we’ve even seen the likes of Paragon decide to stop raiding in a world first race capacity. Whether this is in part due to them choosing not to go with an EU-wide as opposed to Finns-only approach, the limitation of that magical number 20 has affected many. If there was a way to tune Mythic Raids to allow for flexibility, I know that this would be appreciated by many.
Bad: The raid tiers were too close together. High Maul and Blackrock Foundry, followed by *nothing* then followed by Hellfire Citadel…had they spaced these out more efficiently, I just feel our enjoyment levels of Warlords of Draenor could have been sustained better, rather than this *long downtime*.
Good: I’m not against down time to be perfectly honest, because I’m finally making decent progress on What a long strange trip it’s been. Pet collecting, Auction House PVP and Archaeology are all sources of enjoyment for me, that I don’t get to focus on when raiding is red hot. I even managed to score the Fossilized Raptor, as well as the Bone White Raptor…and you guys…I’ve actually dipped my toe into the Argent Tournament. Downtime – can be rewarding!
TLDR: I’m still here, still subbed, and still finding ways to enjoy the game. Having said that though…I am *so* ready for the announcement of Legions release date…come on Blizzard! /cheer