A rant that seems to be affecting me

I am happy with Warlords.  I did have moderately short queue times due to our low/med population connected server, and after the fixes we seem to be able to get right in.  I am not especially thrilled with what appears to be gating of professions behind the Garrison wall, they did say we would not “Have” to have one, and I guess it is a stretch to say you do not “Have” to have a profession maxed to 700, so call it a raised eyebrow for me on that front.  Missions seem to be fairly simple to grasp and learn, finding followers can be hit and miss depending on if you forget a quest or try to jump ahead, and some hidden ones without a guide may be difficult to find.

The one issue that is causing me grief is flying out of my Garrison to any place.  I have mentioned it a few times to CM’s and have not heard hide nor hair, but my flight plans are slow.  And I mean can watch someone riding on the ground slow.  Perhaps a bit faster than a ground mount but noticeably slow none the less.  A flight from my Garrison to Ashran took over 8 minutes.  My wife left hers a few minutes after I did and I watched her fly past me like I was standing still.  I have had other times where she has a direct flight and mine take me by way of my Garrison.  While I want to like the feature, I will drop it in a heart beat if this continues.  I have a limited amount of time to play in an evening, and having a considerable amount wasted on a flight plan bug is not my idea of an enjoying evening playing a game I love.

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What to do, what to do.

10 days until Warlords, and I do not have a clue what I will do with my main.

I have another blog ready to work on a boosted character, Alt #2, that will venture out of the starting gate and not use a Garrison, just to see how needed it is or how difficult it may be to avoid it.  So there is that.  Alt #1 will head in and get his Garrison up and running, and hang out to see what progress you can make going it Garrison only, and then there is Marathal.

The character I have played near exclusively since August of 2009.  In Wrath I knew nothing, going into Cataclysm I had all sorts of grand idea’s things I would do and try, but never did, in Mists, I had other ideas, and hit the ground running, only to realize the race to keep up was not enjoyable, always feeling like I was weeks behind, catching up, only to have a new tier drop.  One big difference was being able to take a peak into the open beta to see what would I be like at max level, will I be fun to play.  And this time, I have no clue. I do not know if PvP will excite me with Ashran, no idea if I will be able to do well in Challenge modes, or the Proving grounds, no clue if I will want to explore every hidden valley or cave, no idea if I will want to get back up on that raiding horse again.  I know nothing except for what I have read, it all looks great on the surface, but will I like it.  Will I enjoy playing my one main.

PC issues may arise, in Cata I had to invest in a new PC, it has done an admirable job for 4 years, now it may not be enough, many say just go build a new one, or upgrade what you currently have, unfortunately that is not something I can justify financially right now.  So I am faced with spending $50 on a gamble that I will be able to play with a reasonable frame rate.  I will be happy if I can keep my 24 FPS, will dread times when it drops sub 10, and if lower it may exclude me from doing a great deal of content.  The thought that I may have to work my way slower through the expansion than my friends is a somber thought.  They will all take days off from work, get to max level quickly, will be into Heroic Dungeons and eventually Raids long before me.  And that is another of many issues I am faced with looking ahead.  The bonus money from people doing quests and just general content will be gone, will I need to shut off guild repairs, will we burn through limited stock piles of gems and enchant materials as people quickly gear up, will we be faced with having 23 people wanting to raid Mythic and having to tell 3 I am sorry.  So many things clouding my mind, telling me you should just call it.  It was a great 5+ years, time to move on.  And yet, I want to see it all, try it all, be there in 10 years or more when we hit level 150 or higher, when we are as powerful as the Old Gods.

Having early access to a game in Beta testing has made the choice for me in trying new games out, but when it comes to WoW, where I have years invested, not knowing is a strange thing.  I don’t know what I will do in Draenor, but do something I will.

Guess I will see many of you on the other side.

kpJBi88

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Pat I will take 3 achievments for 100 gold please

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What is To the Afterlife?

Normally I would look at a new holiday event as something to just knock out right then to keep current on having all of them done.  But after taking a quick read on it, I have said no.  No thank you, I will keep my 100 gold.  You see, like anything else, it does not take us, as a player base very long to find ways to exploit the game.  Apparently people have found out ways to quickly complete the achievement by forming a raid group and heading into SoO, and letting each other kill ourselves 3 times collect your achievements and go.  Others have found ways to farm Halaa battle tokens, and to me that just feels wrong on so many levels for something just implemented into the game.  Yes, I will go back and complete older raid ones at levels far beyond the original appropriate level.  Yes I will endlessly farm rep for factions long forgotten at max level, but No, I will not buy something that can be completed in less than 5 minutes.  I hope that next year they have given some thought to ways this was exploited and make it at least a tiny bit difficult to achieve.  But for the moment, I am saying no than you.

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When my hobby becomes your job

I am sure some may have seen the guild Method is looking to branch out and become more of a professional E-sports team.  If you are unaware of what I am talking about, link to the fundraiser.

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/method-a-gaming-team-and-community

Not looking at the lower level funding, selling shirts, coaching sessions, etc, they are trying to raise money to branch out into the more competitive games, such as Hearthstone and Heroes of the Storm.  I think it is great that they have the skill and desire to compete at the top levels of games.  I do not have an issue with them seeking out corporate sponsors, or even asking folks to donate.  We see Go Fund Me requests all the time, and if we feel it is a worthwhile cause or reason we donate to it.  I wish them the best of luck in making this happen.  They do not play the same game as I do.  They are at a level of playing only a few could even comprehend.

What had me thinking driving to work today was how does my hobby being your job affect me.  I cannot fault them for asking people to pay to watch what they do, people can play football as a hobby, baseball, any numerous hobby’s that have a corresponding professional level counterpart.  People pay for access to NFL Sunday ticket to watch games, and they even compete professionally at video games.  Look at World Series of Poker, people will watch for hours as people gamble.

One thing I have noticed in recent years is that if there is a chance to make money doing something others enjoy as a hobby, people will try to make money at it.  Just focusing on WoW here, lets look at sites like WoWhead, WoWInsider, etc.  They are not asking you to pay a premium to visit their sites, they make money through advertizing on their web sites, it is enough to pay the bills and keep it going, maybe even pay some staff.  We have newcomer AskMrRobot, who offers much for free, if you want additional functionality you can pay a small fee every year for more.  We have class web sites that run on donations and advertisements.

But the one thing that gets me is that while all of these people may have started playing WoW 1 even 10 years or more ago, they did it because they wanted to play a video game.  But now they are looking to find ways to fund, dare I say justify, their playing video games.  There will always be someone out there with a blog, or their own personal web site just talking about what they love, there is a passion finding that person that has found one aspect of the game that they want to focus on and just talk about.  They will listen to ideas, and entertain theories.  They are doing it not for a paycheck or name recognition, just to talk about something they love.

I think that when you no longer look at playing a game and talking about it because you love to talk about it, and instead you start looking at it as a job you have to do, because you get paid, some of the spark dies. When you think that what you offer is so valuable that you think people should pay for it, you have taken a step across a line.  There are many lines, one you cross when you take that step to put yourself out there and talk about what you have a passion for, when you step up to say, hey, I have written a sort of guide based on what I enjoy in the game, to a point where you say, I want to be paid for talking to you about my hobby, and eventually this is my job, my career, I compete at this and want to earn a living doing it.

Is it wrong to want to be able to play games and earn a living doing it?  Absolutely not.  And I am sure people will find value in contributing to you for the entertainment you provide to them.  Just keep in mind, when you lose the passion, we will know, when we see that you are looking at us as a paycheck, we will find someone new that has the passion you once had.  And offers it for free.

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I’m sorry you did not fit in.

It really pains me to have to write this, but I guess it is necessary.  I know you may never read this, or if you do will misinterpret it into something against you.

I’m sorry you did not fit in.  You use to play alliance but when many of the people you played with left the realm and a few faction changed you switched.  You made your own guild, you wanted to PvP on a predominantly PvE server, one of your friends joined our guild and then so did you.  You would spend time on your character in our guild complaining that growing your guild was hard, that because it was not a level 25 no one would join, I tried explaining that you needed to work at it and be there.  You asked for more PvP events, I explained that we did not have many interested, you felt I was bashing PvP, that was not true, we had a few that were interested, but not many, you placed creating something you were interested in doing in my hands to make happen, and I couldn’t.  Telling me to make ranks for PvP and people will do it.  When I explained that we are, and always have been predominately a PvE guild you wanted to hear none of it.  Myself and others tried to help you with gear, reforging advice, gems, enchants, you never used half of what was sent, would complain other classes were OP, and your DPS was bad because of poor design by Blizzard, you would come into the raid channel in vent when not in the raid to complain about some issue bothering you.  Once we had an officers meeting and were in an officer channel you thought we were there ignoring you, despite telling you otherwise.  You would even come into the guild vent when you were on characters in your own guild to talk to people.  Eventually some could not take the constant talk of things being broken, the server sucked, the game sucked, bring back 40 man raids, original WoW was better than this crap, eventually you felt the guild sucked and that people were in cliques and that some officers were rude, and finally left.  You left the server on some characters to start someplace new.  Yet seem to come back looking for reasons to say it is toxic and continually bash those that at one time tried to help you.

I am sorry you did not fit in, you took a step to find some place to start new, please don’t continue to look back on what was to you a bad experience, and try to move forward.

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This is the dawning of the age…

of the pug group.

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This is just a personal observation mind you.  I have only been involved with World of Warcraft for a bit less than 6 years, I am sure many that will be celebrating 10 soon, or even some going back to prior Warcraft days, will say yes or no, or kind of.

It seems to me that either Blizzard knows something about playing styles, or trends, that we are not privy too, or they are steering the game in a direction, but it appears to me that they are heading more towards a solo involvement in a multi player game.  More an more things to do solo, more ways to see content as a solo player.  For Mists we saw things like Oqueue and Open Raid become very popular, now they have added an in game raid group finding feature, we have had LFR of course, and Dungeon finder.  Now we see a way to find groups cross server, the term “Server Community” is becoming more and more diluted, with connected servers, and less personal responsibility on keeping a name for yourself.

A few years ago, you needed to be in a guild to see end game content, or needed to have a decent reputation for being a good player in order to possibly get into a raid group.  It feels now that to bolster the raiding aspect of the game they are adding more and more ways for people to be involved, but is that just artificially inflating participation numbers.  If we make it easy to get into they will do it.  I don’t know.  We see Mythic is now set at 20.  In 4 more years will we see it drop lower to 15, cross server groups, eventually to a flex size raid for all levels of difficulty.  They have said WoW will be here for at least 10 more years which means if I keep playing I will have 15 years, some will have 20 years playing.  I would not be surprised if they had a fairly decent idea of where the game is heading in terms of overall design, perhaps someone more knowledgeable in game design trends can see a pattern, I am only guessing at what it feels like to me now.

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Going forward

If you are reading this then you are one of the few people I follow or that follow me. I have not hand picked people that agree with all of my opinions. I am choosing to follow people with various opinions, even ones I may disagree with at times, because you present then in a well thought out respectful manner. You are willing to listen to opposing view points and do not demand people bow to your view.

A very wise person pointed out something to me. Yes there are times we can just shake our head and ignore some blow up topic of the week before we are off to fight a new squirrel. But there are times when we need to put on our big boy/girl clothes, equip our armor, and wade out into the river of muck from the over flowing sewage plant of toxicity that has overflowed the banks. When enough of us do, even just standing there in support of each other, yes the muck will cover us all, yes it is unpleasant, but in the end what we save once the waters have subsided will be fertile ground upon which a better land will spring forth. We won’t be remembered for great deeds or honored with fancy titles, but it should not be about that. It should be standing up for something because it is the right thing to do.

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

We should never just allow things to destroy that which gives us enjoyment in life. Never accept that there is nothing we can do. Even if it is to privately message someone that although you may not fully agree that you support that they are trying to be an adult and trying to be reasonable in the manner they are presenting their case.

The comments to the effect that gaming is dead, are half true. It dies with every generation that walks away from it, but is reborn with every new generation that embraces the wonder of trying out new games, expanding their minds to new ideas, new thoughts, new circles of friends. Change is necessary for things to grow and improve, or become stagnant in its inability to grow.

I will continue to voice my thoughts and opinions, will do my best to discuss things with people if I do not fully see their view. I will always try my best to help others. And mostly will do my best to have fun playing games. What is fun for one may differ from others. Accept that not everyone may enjoy things as you do. Do not demean them for doing things differently but encourage them to keep doing so because in the end we are all playing the same games.

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