Change is What Makes the World (of Warcraft) Go Round
My other half is a pretty stubborn butthead sometimes. When it comes to WoW, he’s pretty anti-change. I generally hear these utterances when it comes to every patch, every expansion…
“This makes no sense. WHY WOULD THEY DO THIS??”
“Blizzard f’d everything up.”
“This game isn’t fun anymore because Blizzard keeps changing everything”.
“Blizzard broke PVP”
“Blizzard broke healing”
“Blizzard broke raiding”
“Blizzard broke the game”
He finally did quit WoW after Cataclysm. And no amount of begging, cajoling, or sexual favors seems to entice him to come back to the game. And it got me thinking, are the changes always for the better? This week’s Community Blog Topic asks what we think about persistent change. For example, we can never go back and see what Vale of Eternal Blossoms was at the start of MOP. We’ll never pick a fight in Southshore again.
With the limitations of the game and development, these kinds of changes are permanent and irrevocable. The story keeps moving, regardless as to where and when we start it. The big drawback to this is, for a new player just starting WoW, it’s like he just started reading a book at chapter 15. He can try to start at chapter 1, but it’s chapter 1 of a completely different story.
I know WoW would never be able to make this happen, but maybe in the next version of WoW, or new game entirely… remember back in the old days (for those of you who are my age or older..ahem) when we had “Choose Your Own Adventure” books? Where the decisions you made had a direct affect of the outcome of the story? WoW tried this a bit with phasing, but everyone had to basically choose the same adventure in order to continue on in the story. Imagine if those quests you skipped had dire effects on the outcome of your game world? In this way, you would be in complete control of your gaming experience. Just what would have happened if I didn’t kill 60 quillboars in the Barrens to avenge Mankrik’s wife? Would they have overrun Crossroads and killed him too? If I didn’t take back Undercity at the Wrathgate, would Sylvannas have been murdered? Banished? But much like the old choose your own adventure books, there would have to be a way so that if you didn’t like the outcome, you could go back and make a different decision.
In this type of setup, new players would literally start at the beginning and follow the story. Their world would change around them as they progress. The sundering would happen when they get to that point, and not before. Then the decisions they make or what quests they choose determine just what changes, if anything at all.
I know this is all just a pipe dream. I would have loved to witness the opening of Ahn’Quiraj. But in the end, the change not only is good, but it is necessary to keep the story going and to keep the player base interested.