Daily Blogroll Oct 26: Pandamonium edition

All anyone is talking about these days is Winds of Pandaria. I desperately want to join in, but how? I don’t play WoW any more. I’m feeling a little left out.

But hey, why let that stop me.

I may not play WoW much any more, but I have played another game that was desperately trying to attract new players while keeping old ones — EverQuest. A game that is still going strong. At this stage in its life, where WoW finds itself today, EQ added a race of dragon people, a whole new accelerated leveling path. Later came mercenaries that allowed almost any class to easily solo. All this kind of stuff.

So, World of Warcraft is offering a kid-friendly expansion. This is — and I’m being entirely serious about this — a genius move. Many of the hardcore raiders of today are about to take on responsibilities, get families of their own, take jobs that require their attention and enthusiasm and so on. The kids of today need to be ready to take on the guild leadership and raid management that the previous generation is leaving behind. The Winds of Pandaria is Blizzard reaching out to kids just coming into the hardcore scene.

It doesn’t matter WHAT the new expansion was, people would pan it. Add a kid friendly expansion, then Blizzard is making WoW sillier. Just make another new high end raiding expansion and five extra levels, and Blizzard isn’t reaching out to new players. Completely revamp the leveling path, and Blizzard is ruining everything that was great about WoW in 2004. Everyone is a critic. Everyone could do it better.

Melmoth over at KiaSA thinks the whole “buy a year of WoW, get a new mount and Diablo 3” promotion might be a prelude to introducing some sort of free-to-play plan. That’s a cool idea, but I don’t see Blizzard letting people pay nothing instead of something anytime soon. Maybe when Titan is announced.

Asheron’s Call 2

Stropp has been enjoying the recent series of articles over at Massively about Asheron’s Call 2, the abandoned sequel to the early MMO pioneer Asheron’s Call. Stropp wonders if someone were to bring back AC2, or any other game that had been cancelled (Tabula Rasa, anyone?), would people would really play them? Aside from some hardcore fans, I’d really doubt it. People don’t wax nostalgic about game mechanics or leveling systems or whatever. They remember the community. And the death of a game has a chilling effect on the game’s community. What’s lost can’t be regained. Sure, a NEW community could form — but how likely is that?


TAGN has been keeping an eye on the EverQuest progression server, Fippy Darkpaw. FD is the first server in years and years to get their own dedicated GM. GMs used to be standard equipment for servers; they were an integral part of the server community, running events, mediating between raiding guilds, forming new guilds, officiating at player weddings and so on. When they got outsourced and became little more than call center personnel, something bright and wonderful was lost. Anyway, FD has a GM and the rowdy raid guilds have been forced into a raid target rotation. FD is up to the Velious expansion, and to earn the right to take down a mob, they have to kill Sontikar (the dragon outside the Temple of Veeshan) or Lord Vyemm (the gatekeeper of the North Temple of Veeshan, where all the cool mobs are).

The reason these raid guilds have to have a rotation is because there are no instanced raid mobs in Velious — nor in Luclin and originally, not in the Planes of Power, either. Guilds looking to raid had to race to every raid target, usually with a guild or two on their heels, waiting for them to fail so they could pick up the pieces. Instancing was eventually added to the Plane of Time, and from then on, raid targets were increasingly instanced. Nowadays, no guild progress affects any other guild, so there’s no competition.

Seriously? This is all you got?

Sorry :( Should have done this last night, but it’s morning now and I have to go to work. I’ll do better tomorrow!!!! Promise!

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9 thoughts on “Daily Blogroll Oct 26: Pandamonium edition”

  1. Hey Brenda, it’s Mists of Pandaria 8) ooops heheh

    Also, I am not sure people don’t wax all nostalgic over game mechanics, that’s what everyone is bitching about all the time! I sure do anyway, DAOC’s pvp was the best that’s ever been released, I sure wax nostalgic about it!! :D Maybe it was also the realm pride though. We’re having a small discussion about it on Google+ it’s reminding me, I suppose :)

  2. APB died and was brought back. How is it doing? Hellgate: London too, though it isn’t really an MMO, though I don’t really want to go down the ‘What is an MMO’ rathole.

    I have no idea how well either of these games is doing, though, and in the case of APB its first life was so short I’m not sure it ever developed its own real sense of community.

    But I think we can look at long-running games and see that people generally can’t go home again. How often do we see one of our own deciding to go back and play some older game that they used to love…and giving up after a few weeks.

    Everquest seems to be the one exception, though.

  3. Why would the ‘kids’* suddenly like cute pandas when we, when we were ‘kids’ and started to play WoW in the millions, didn’t like cute pandas – least required that as a reason to play the game ?

    * A kid seems to be someone without any responsibility who just started a MMO. That would be me when I was 20. I wouldn’t have called me a kid back then, however.

  4. “People don’t wax nostalgic about game mechanics or leveling systems or whatever.”

    Sure they do! Like UO’s skill-based system. Or SWG’s crafting and harvesting systems!

  5. Nils, I think you’re going to have to accept that your reaction to pandas in WoW is your issue.

    Not that it isn’t a legitimate, gripe. You are certainly entitled to your likes and dislikes. And you are certainly not alone in your view. But you are starting to look like you are on an anti-panda crusade, which we both know would be a pointless endeavor.

    Seriously, you are asking questions that seem silly at this point. Why would kids suddenly like cute pandas? Lots of kids love cute pandas. Lots of people love them. Always have, always will. Cuteness is in their nature, and many, many people love that. I stood in line at the San Diego Zoo for two hours so my daughter could see the pandas there. On a weekday. And the line never got shorter behind us.

    As I have said in the past, I do not like raspberries. I will avoid them at just about any cost. But I do not feel the need to inject my dislike into any discussion involving raspberries. It is pointless because lots of people love raspberry.

  6. I’m not playing WoW either but I still managed to get a blog post out of the pandaclysm.

    @Wilhelm An anti-panda crusade would hardly be pointless, surely? The whole USP of pandas is that therea re very, very few of them. Wouldn’t take much to wipe them out, would it? It’d probably be a lot easier than, say, a War on Drugs…

  7. You can already play for free up to level 20 now. Its not simply a x number of day trial any longer from what I understand. Just long enough to get you hooked! They did that before the subscription plan that was just announced.

  8. As much as I hated SWG, I still talk about it — miss its crafting and harvesting. Their character generator is still unmatched.

    Stopped playing WoW over 2 years ago. Don’t miss it. Don’t even care about pandas. I loved noncombat pets, but when it got to the point where you could spend real money to get in-game stuff, I lost interest. Although, that moonkin pet and plush are cute.

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