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My thoughts on Cataclysm

I haven’t written in a while.. probably because there hasn’t much to write about. We went 6/8 before the holiday break. Yay. No pictures though.. it doesn’t feel like an accomplishment. I think I know why.

Anyway, since we’re in the last major content patch before the next expansion, here are my thoughts on the high lights and low lights of Cataclysm.

Highlights

1. The physical changes to Azeroth

It was like exploring the world all over again. The barrens needed to be cut in half. But the alliance taking over the southern part? Not cool, man. Not cool.

2. Flying in Azeroth

It’s about damn time!!!

3. Goblins!

They’re cute and giggly and I can finally have my pac-man family!

4. Epic lore involving Sylvannas and the battle for Gilneas

I did both sides of the story. I leveled my goblin shaman in Silverpine. I saw Sylvannas’ side of the story, why she did what she did. She was pissed about being forsaken. She couldn’t reproduce. Lordaeron would fall if her people died out.

Then I leveled a baby worgen and saw the plight of the Gilneans. I saw what she did to them. I felt so bad for them. I may bleed horde blood but I sided with the alliance on this one.

5. Guild Leveling/Perks/Achievements

Now this was just fun. Cash Flow ftw! Leveling baby alts is a breeze! Mass summons! Mass rez! Weeeee!!!

6. Challenging content…for a little while

At the onset of Cataclysm, it seemed that the old Wrath model got thrown out the window. ICC was too easy for end game. Ok, let’s make heroic 5-mans super hard!! I wasn’t on board with the “super-hardness” of the 5 mans at the beginning. They made me cry. They made me hate the game. There was no room for error. Forget pugs!

T11 difficulty was right where it was supposed to be. Before the nerfs. Firelands difficulty was right where it was supposed to be. Before the nerfs.

7. LFR – in theory

The premise of LFR is a good one. Allow players who aren’t in guilds or raiding with their guilds the opportunity to raid and improve their character. This is going to also be listed under “low lights” with why I hate LFR and how it ruined end game.

8. Reforging

This is the best feature that Blizzard has added. Don’t like a stat? Reforge it into another one!

9. Transmogrification

I hated my druid’s T12 set. If it’s called a robe, make it a goddamn robe. Ugh. UGLYYY. Her PVP set was pretty. So she looks pretty again. Not to mention my Kynkki priest is rocking her skimpy black mageweave set! Rawr!

10. UI Improvements

The Guild Leader UI, character info window, ability to add world raid markers. Much needed.

Low lights

1. Nerfing content too soon.

Hello, Firelands.

2. Bipolar levels of difficulty

We started with heroic dungeons that made me cry. They got nerfed to hell. T11 became a faceroll. Firelands was ridiculously hard at the beginning, as it should have been. Ragnaros is still a royal pain in the ass. His “nerf” wasn’t significant. But the faceroll of the first 6 bosses sucked the fun and challenge out of it after a while. It was awesome that we killed 6 before the nerfs hit. THAT gave me a sense of accomplishment. However I was pretty much over FL after we kept blowing through it with little effort.

3. End game not challenging enough

Heroic mode is going to be the new norm. One week into T13 and guilds were clearing it. WTF? MT cleared 5 bosses in 5 hours in our first week. For real. Our only challenge was the ping pong boss.

4. Lack of new content

We had a couple of new zones but nothing that really felt new. And haven’t we seen Ragnaros somewhere before? Aren’t some of these mechanics vaguely familiar? Morchok is a re-incarnation of every fight that required you to LOS a special ability (ohai Sapphiron, Sindragosa, first boss in Utgarde Keep, last boss in heroic Sethekk Halls) with a side of Baleroc. Hagara is the Heigan dance on downers. The ooze boss is kinda like Halfus with oozes instead of drakes. Ultraxion is Patchwerk 3.0 with a gimmick. Ohai lootship 2.0! Way to recycle content Blizzard. Why are guilds blowing through T13? Oh yeah… WE’VE DONE THIS BEFORE!

And speaking of doing the same shit over and over…

5. LFR ruined end game

In theory, it’s good. In practice, it fails. Hard. LFR is an EZ mode of the current content, thus trivializing end game. Deathwing is supposed to be this big bad boss. I facerolled LFR not having a clue what the hell was going on. That, to me, isn’t fun.

To make LFR work, Blizzard should either have made it previous content early, and add raids as they become outdated. If I were designing Cataclysm with LFR, this is what I would have done:

T11:
BOT (LFR, 10, 25)
BWD (10, 25 man only)
To4W (10, 25 man only)

T12:
BOT (LFR, 10, 25)
BWD (LFR, 10, 25)
To4W (LFR, 10, 25)
Firelands (10,25 only)

T13:
BOT (LFR, 10, 25)
BWD (LFR, 10, 25)
To4W (LFR, 10, 25)
Firelands (LFR, 10,25)
DS (10,25 only) or LFR’d the first 4 bosses only
Fall of Deathwing  (10,25 only)

The problem with LFR now is everyone’s already seen Deathwing die. I’ll tell you I felt zero sense of accomplishment in that. My alt saw DW before my main. Even though my priest has “finished” Dragon Soul, it felt completely unearned. Even when I see him die on 10 man.. I don’t think I’m going to feel the same way I did about killing the Lich King 2 weeks before Cataclysm hit. It’s more of a… so what?

That pretty much sums up my feelings about this expansion. So what.

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Categories: Raiding
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