Players should see content, all of it

| Wednesday, February 29, 2012
And that means seeing more than just the most recent raid. This was, in my opinion, one of the top ten gigantic screw-ups of the Lich King expansion. This model of "players seeing content" was poorly implemented, resulting in the opposite, with any new players being catapulted over older content and right into the latest raid. Maybe players missing Naxxramas 2.0 wasn't much of a loss, but missing Ulduar and a couple one-off dragon fights, particularly the one where we kill the Aspect of Magic, seems like a bigger problem. That wasn't entirely new. Ever since BC came out, older raid content has been leapfrogged entirely. Maybe there wasn't a good solution to that, so let's say it's not actually a problem. In fact, let's say that the new rolling raid model is shiny and leave it alone.

How would you like to gain 10% experience? No no, this isn't a new piece of heirloom gear. Instead, it's the complete opposite. Stick around in Azeroth at 60 or Outland at 70, maybe Northrend at 80, though I've not tried that yet. Watch your experience. Notice how you can go from 1200 per kill to... 120. 120? Huh? I know mob xp drops a little when you level, but a 90% drop seems a little bit extreme. That's just Blizzard telling you to get the fuck out. It doesn't matter if you're trying to finish a quest chain, get out, now. Go to the next expansion. And don't you dare hang around there either!

Maybe I'm reading it wrong. Maybe they're actually trying to be nice. Maybe they're saying "please, go ahead and finish up, we'll give you some experience for it, but we don't want to push you up so high that you can't enjoy the next zone." The mess of a leveling curve suggests that they do not have "let players finish content" as their goal.

This makes no sense to me. Why would you try to push players out of content, particularly content which the player has not finished?


Dwism said...

sub numbers are dwindling, hurry spread the players out on as much content as possible!!!

Ratshag said...

Say they didn't nerf XP from killing mobs (note what it's only kills that are nerfed, not quests). You ding 70 (or 80) run some quests, mebbe a dungeon or two, (or just go ta the AH) then come back with some ferociously powerful gear, and proceed to gleefully rip through mobs like Grandma with a new rider mower. XP per hour comes rollin' in, and ya levels through the expansion way faster than if'n ya actually went and did the new content. This be why they slash XP per mob.

Umrtvovacz said...

I don't want this post to sound like advertising, but Guild Wars 2 have no such problem. You get downleveled to zone in which you are, but you keep all your skills, traits etc., you are just less powerful. For example when you are lvl 30 and go to lvl 5 area, you get downleveled to about 7. You are still more efficient, but you can't just faceroll mobs, as they fight back and are actually challenging. Downleveling also makes low level skill challenges (small event which give you points you can spend to buy skills) quite ... challenging. You also get upleveled in PvP zones to max level, givving you a fair chance in combat, albeit with less skill diversity.

Klepsacovic said...

@Dwism: Maybe more content would attract more players and it is the narrowing of content that has driven so many away.

@Rashtag: That would justify some nerf, but 10% is quite a lot, particularly when it is activated by a single level.

@Umrtvovacz: Sounds a bit like Skyrim. I like that ability to go anywhere and have content of the right level.

Ephemeron said...

The 90% nerf was implemented shortly before Cataclysm. Without it nerf, the most efficient way to level from 80 to 85 would be to AoE down cultists in Icecrown.

If Cataclysm was 80-90, it wouldn't be necessary.

NetherLands said...

Ephemeron is right, except for the timing: they did it (shortly) after Cata launch, as several people had done exactly that to get Realm Firsts etc.

If someone would say: "if you turn levelling into a race instead of a journey to be enjoyed, of course people are going to adapt to that mindset", I would say that someone is correct.

Never being a fan of TBC (though with the Vanilla content gone, it's the next best thing; still no reason to resub for me) I quite enjoyed being able to push 68 by doing Silithius and Alcaz Isle during WotLK, it's a real shame they changed it.

sam said...

I think something like downranking would help a lot. If your playstyle or playtime changes drastically then you have to find a new group of people to play with, or rely on LFG. For those of us who like to play with our friends it becomes an overpriced chat channel at that point.

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