Monday, September 24, 2012

Some thoughts for the day before the expansion

Call me cynical, but did anyone else read that the the latter two thirds of our next raiding tier would be available four weeks after the first one and think it was a bit too coincidental that this time period is almost exactly one subscription period. And besides, I thought they were trying to get away from that gated content idea...

Lots of people complained about the lack of explanation given for the events of the Theramore scenario, and I'm one of them. I think there's a big difference between the way I play "multiplayer" content versus questing content. In multiplayer content, I'm there for the challenge and flow of the game, so any story bullshit that interrupts it is highly annoying. In questing content, I'm just farting my way through a bunch of crap gameplay-wise anyway, so I prefer to have a narrative to follow on so I don't get bored. The gameplay found in the Theramore scenario was, as expected, much closer to the latter paradigm, but unlike questing I had no idea why any of it was happening, so playing it just felt kind of boring and pointless. I followed the icons on my map, clicked on anything clickable, and killed the things with red bars.

Apparently the new Challenge Gold armour sets have "procs" on them. I'm not sure whether it was MMO Champion guy that first incorrectly called them "procs", but seriously, a proc is something which happens on a random chance; these are just effects-- there is nothing random about them. Why are we reaching for obscure jargon words without needing to? The dumbs of the WoW populace probably are going to call these effects "procs" forever now that the term has been established, like what happened with Warlock summoning "stones".

I've decided to focus on three primary toons for Mists: my Warrior, Syrannia; Warlock, Coreus; and Shaman, Tashraal. Each is a character I'm quite attached to and a class which I really enjoy playing, as well as providing an even spread of group roles: tank, damage and healer respectively.

My only disappointment was not being able to include a Leatherworker in this group, as the new endgame profession model relies significantly on you actually playing the character you're crafting with, and these characters only cover Blacksmithing, Tailoring, Enchanting, Inscription and Engineering [twice]. I very briefly considered dropping Engineering from either Syrannia or Tashraal, but I'm unwilling to give up the Engineering conveniences on my most-played character, and being a master engineer is too central to the character of Tashraal [also I've spent too much time and gold collecting obscure schematics] for me to throw that away.

My Paladin, Judicas was my previous choice to fill the healing role [also with Leatherworking and Jewelcrafting professions], but I actually haven't been enjoying healing with a Paladin much recently. After thinking about it I realised that the reason I started healing with the Paladin class in the first place-- playing a melee healer-- has been completely patched out over the course of the expansion. Now I just feel like the healing rotation [because the Paladin resource system means you have a rotation-- does any other healing class have to deal with this?] is a bit too reactive and just feels clunky overall.

Shaman on the other hand feels very smooth and genuinely hybrid, with such a large proportion of the healing being indirect or smart healing, as well as having some really fun and powerful utility, which I suspect will be a pretty big deal when it comes to Challenge dungeons.

My long term goal is to get a full set of Challenge gear on each of these characters, as a representation of mastery of that class. No idea how viable this goal is, but I think that is what makes it a good goal; achieving something  I already know is possible doesn't prove anything. :)

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