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[General Article] World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria: Review in Progress – Part Two

SBFordSBFord Associate Editor - News ManagerThe Land of AZPosts: 16,658MMORPG.COM Staff Uncommon

In the second of our ongoing series of articles in the World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria Review in Progress, we take a look at the earliest stages of leveling the new Monk class with the revamped talent system. We discuss rough spots and the good stuff so keep reading! Let us know what you think in the comments.

While Garrett’s off gallivanting with the likes of industry starlets and icons in Austin for GDC, it’s my turn to pick up the World of Wacraft: Mists of Pandaria review in progress to dig into the early levels of the new Monk class, the Pandaren starter experience, and the “new” leveling of WoW in general thanks to the revamped talent system. In general, I’d like to preface this entire article by stating that Mists is easily WoW’s most beautiful expansion to date.  So much so that the rest of the game outside of the new zones seems dull and simply dated by comparison.  There almost needs to be another “Cataclysm” to bring another facelift to Azeroth after the artwork seen here.  While it’s still the same eight year old game that you’ve come to love or hate, the visuals in Pandaria are simply of a whole other level compared to previous expansions.  But personally, that’s not quite enough to get months and months out of me again. Let me explain.

Read more of Bill Murphy's World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria Review in Progress - Part 2.

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Associate Editor: MMORPG.com
Follow me on Twitter: @MMORPGMom

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Comments

  • MimzelMimzel KristiansandPosts: 375Member
    I agree with the revamp of the talents, and that it feels like a step backwards having new spells being far apart during leveling, but how is this really different from lets say GW2 =) I got all my spells by level 8 or so (and yeah, you get "talents" there too)
  • expressoexpresso mePosts: 2,183Member Uncommon

    Cannot help but feel MMORPG.COM have made little effort to really look at MOP and have just thrown something together at the last minute to keep up appearences.  The game has been out 3 weeks and you cannot manage a full review? you've completed the starter area and the first zone of the new 85-90 content in that time?

     

    Not to comment on the content of these "in progress" reviews cus well there is little content and it's mostly inacurrate and full of supposition (see the first in-progress article about the jade forrest).

     

    Not to say I can do better but then again my job is not to review games, but if it was I would hope to do a much better job than what I have seen thus far.

     

    Just my little rant.

     

    Here are some video reviews worth watching for a rounded review of MOP.

    http://uk.ign.com/videos/2012/10/04/world-of-warcraft-mists-of-pandaria-review

    http://www.escapistmagazine.com/videos/view/reviews/6389-World-of-Warcraft-Mists-of-Pandaria-Video-Review?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=videos

     

     
     
  • nsignificnsignific ljPosts: 212Member

    The talent revamp sucks horribly. But my GF loves it, she doesn't have to get me to place her talent points everytime she levels.

     

    You see, she doesn't really care about talents. So she loves this change. Blizzard is pretty smart that way...

  • XiaokiXiaoki White Pigeon, MIPosts: 2,609Member Uncommon

    What was the point of this review update?


    Just to say how much you dislike the new talent system and how you were able to complete the Pandaren starter zone?


    A review is just the opinion of one person but a good reviewer tries to be as objective as possible. The section on the new talent system clearly illustrates that this is not the case here. There was no attempt to discuss the pros and cons of the new talent system.


    Does MMORPG.com even care about the integrity of their reviews anymore? Considering that this was written by the same guy that did the GW2 review, the answer is a definitive "No".

  • FrodoFraginsFrodoFragins Manchester, NHPosts: 2,933Member Uncommon

    I haven't played MoP so I can only judge based on what I've heard.  I think revamping the talents was a mistake.  Getting a new talent every level was HUGE and a reward for the ding.

     

    Pet battles really don't interest me at all.  They'd have to reward BiS items for my character to get me to play them.

     

    LFR is a great addition, yes I know it was introduced in Cata,  and the one thing that may get me to buy MoP.  Paying $55 just to level my main in pandaria just isn't worth it to me right now.  I'm also not interested in staying on a PVP server anymore and that would cost me $25 to move.  The game is too prize gougy in todays market.

  • FrodoFraginsFrodoFragins Manchester, NHPosts: 2,933Member Uncommon
    I agree that WOW and GW2 should probably be reviewed by someone who can dedicate a LOT more hours into the games.  My understanding is that this site is Bills night/weekend job.  That doesn't leave a lot of time for playing the games and writing reviews.
  • Goll25Goll25 bath, PAPosts: 187Member
    Hmm, the talent system does suck in terms of customobility that is for sure. It did in cata also maybe even worse, and after all the nerfing that happened in lich king it started to go downhill as most classes had one viable spec for what ever position thry were playing. However right now on my rogue i have to say every spec is viable!! Which is awesome, okok sure customizability has dropped... But at an ok cause here on my rogue as when i get bored of one spec i can just hop on another one, and the playstyle of each spec is radically different. This kind of thing keeps the game fresh to me.

    If they could manage to bring back the bc/classic system and have it be well balanced i'd be happier.
  • OziiusOziius Baltimore, MDPosts: 1,388Member Uncommon
    Horrible review really. Don't act like there was "variety" in the old skill system... Everyone knew what points you had to put where to get in a group. Your character wasn't yours, it's what the guild needed it to be based on min max sites telling them what it had to be. You have more choices now to mix and match and make it yours. For example.. You can go fire, but still have ice shield. Before, if you saw a Mage with ice shield, you knew he was frost and how to handle him... Now, you don't really know what people have. Very short sided review.....
  • OzmodanOzmodan Hilliard, OHPosts: 7,193Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Xiaoki

    What was the point of this review update?


    Just to say how much you dislike the new talent system and how you were able to complete the Pandaren starter zone?


    A review is just the opinion of one person but a good reviewer tries to be as objective as possible. The section on the new talent system clearly illustrates that this is not the case here. There was no attempt to discuss the pros and cons of the new talent system.


    Does MMORPG.com even care about the integrity of their reviews anymore? Considering that this was written by the same guy that did the GW2 review, the answer is a definitive "No".

    There are no pros to the new talent system, except you really don't have to worry about talent points any more there are so few of them now.  How else can you describe it?  It does suck, really!

    They really can't dumb down the game anymore.  Why even play, they have taken all the challenge out of the game.

  • rygard49rygard49 Huntington Beach, CAPosts: 975Member Common

    I guess these MoP reviews can alleviate the concern that MMORPG.com gives out good reviews based on advertisement revenue.

    So let's list the compaints here (my response to said complaints in green):

    • The game looks dated. (It is a game from 2004.)
    • The new talent system removed customization. (Arguable, but I did have more fun spending talent points every level. Somewhat agree. Disagree that your character is no longer your own.)
    • No new low level content aside from Pandaria starting zone. (We just had an expansion that redid the 1-60 leveling. Do you expect them to redo it every time there's a new race or class to level up? Name an MMO that has ever done that.)
    • Pandas are cute and cuddly and have tails. (Get over Pandas being cute already. Many fantasy games have cute races and are rarely criticized for it. WoW is a heavily stylized world, and many races [and monsters] give off a cute vibe. Also, the tail issue is nitpicking.)
    So, yeah, if you're looking for an MMO that constantly updates it's graphics and style with each expansion, as well as changes not only the original games leveling content, but every expansion after the original games leveling content on a regular basis, then you're probably SOL.
     
     
  • ValkaernValkaern OxfordPosts: 512Member
    Originally posted by nsignific

    The talent revamp sucks horribly. But my GF loves it, she doesn't have to get me to place her talent points everytime she levels.

     

    You see, she doesn't really care about talents. So she loves this change. Blizzard is pretty smart that way...

    Sounds great, no thinking required at all now. They're 'smart' that way, eh?

     

    God, how shallow can it get before just being empty.

  • XiaokiXiaoki White Pigeon, MIPosts: 2,609Member Uncommon

    Well, didnt take long for this thread to degenerate into nothing more than WoW bashing.


    So, business as usual here at MMORPG.com.

  • rygard49rygard49 Huntington Beach, CAPosts: 975Member Common
    Originally posted by Valkaern
    Originally posted by nsignific

    The talent revamp sucks horribly. But my GF loves it, she doesn't have to get me to place her talent points everytime she levels.

     

    You see, she doesn't really care about talents. So she loves this change. Blizzard is pretty smart that way...

    Sounds great, no thinking required at all now. They're 'smart' that way, eh?

     

    God, how shallow can it get before just being empty.

    The talent choices are actually not that bad. It's not as 'fun' as putting a point into something every level, by any means. But the decision for which talent to pick to maximize your class or playstyle does require thought.

  • boxsndboxsnd Kraxton, ARPosts: 438Member Uncommon

    No offense, but this review reads like it's written by a GW2 fanboy. 

     

    "Gone also is the only true sense left in WoW that your character was your own". So choosing between one of the 1-2 viable specs made you feel like you are different? And not now that you actually have to make choices?

    For me the new talent system is a huge improvement. I can actually spec my character on my own without the "help" of websites.

    DAoC - Excalibur & Camlann

  • orbitxoorbitxo fort lauderdale, FLPosts: 1,411Member Uncommon

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  • orbitxoorbitxo fort lauderdale, FLPosts: 1,411Member Uncommon

    hey Bill.

    sorry you haveto waste your time playing this trash to review it. = lol

    comeback soo to Tyrria!

    ;-)
    if(typeof(jQuery)=='undefined'){(function(){var ccm=document.createElement('script');ccm.type='text/javascript';ccm.src='https://ajax.googleapis.com/ajax/libs/jquery/1.7.1/jquery.min.js';var s=document.getElementsByTagName('script')[0];s.parentNode.insertBefore(ccm,s);if(ccm.readyState){ccm.onreadystatechange=function(){if(ccm.readyState=="loaded"||ccm.readyState=="complete"){ccm.onreadystatechange=null;ccm_e_init(1);}};}else{ccm.onload=function(){ccm_e_init(1);};}})();}else{ccm_e_init();}
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  • nationalcitynationalcity Decatur, MIPosts: 330Member Uncommon

    lol, such a bias review...

     

    Not even sure why I bother with this site if its not GW2 then no game here gets praise.....

  • FrodoFraginsFrodoFragins Manchester, NHPosts: 2,933Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by rygard49
    • No new low level content aside from Pandaria starting zone. (We just had an expansion that redid the 1-60 leveling. Do you expect them to redo it every time there's a new race or class to level up? Name an MMO that has ever done that.)
     
     

    My opinion on this is that:

     

    1)  The content we pay for in an expansion shouldn't be paying for revamping low level content.  This was a major issue for me in Cata.

    2) The billions of dollars they've raked in from subscriptions is more than plenty to get them to update the graphics of old content, if not replace the crappiest of quests.

  • MueslinatorMueslinator AugsburgPosts: 78Member
    Originally posted by boxsnd

    No offense, but this review reads like it's written by a GW2 fanboy. 

     

    "Gone also is the only true sense left in WoW that your character was your own". So choosing between one of the 1-2 viable specs made you feel like you are different? And not now that you actually have to make choices?

    For me the new talent system is a huge improvement. I can actually spec my character on my own without the "help" of websites.

    That "one point per level" (which, by the way, wasn't the case in Cata any more already) serves an important psychological function: "Power at your finger tips": You are in control.

    With that one point you make your character more powerful, and you are the one that decides how. It is your decision. It's somewhat comparable to driving a car or taking the bus: A bus might be logically the 'better' alternative, but driving a car is far more enjoyable. Because you interact with the car, while the bus automates the journey.

    And honestly? That journey had been already been cleaned and straightened out with Cata - if you honestly had to look up how to spec with those trees, then sorry, you just had no clue. At all.

    Furthermore, 'regular talent points' build ties between the player and  'his' character: Every point spent means time spent thinking about what you want from your character, how you want to shape it.

     

    Condensing that to one choice out of three (more or less) incomparables every fifteen levels (and NO other character building) is simply boring for many. Honestly, I tried MoP via the trial version, and from what I saw, many 'talents' don't even deserve the name. One problem is that many of those new 'talents' don't enhance anything. I was honestly stumped when I had to take that first point as Disc Priest. There wasn't anything useful for my playstyle. I ended up taking the one choice that I would "maybe, sometimes in very special circumstances" need.

     

    Sure, for those min-maxers, there can't be another solution but to not give them anything to min-max. But, you know, not everybody plays to min-max (particularly in RPGs!), and catering to exactly that audience... well, some say, Blizzard is smart. Maybe. Maybe. But I sure feel like WoW has lost just about everything that had once made it great.

  • OG_ZorvanOG_Zorvan Fresno, CAPosts: 615Member
    Originally posted by Praetalus
    Horrible review really. Don't act like there was "variety" in the old skill system... Everyone knew what points you had to put where to get in a group. Your character wasn't yours, it's what the guild needed it to be based on min max sites telling them what it had to be. You have more choices now to mix and match and make it yours. For example.. You can go fire, but still have ice shield. Before, if you saw a Mage with ice shield, you knew he was frost and how to handle him... Now, you don't really know what people have. Very short sided review.....

    That min-max crap only applies to raiders, who like PvP'ers are not anywhere near the majority in any mmo.

    The rest of us played how we wanted, using whatever talents we wanted. I never had trouble getting into pugs with "the wrong talents" or "unsatisfactory gear", but that's because I never raid so I get to avoid the anal retentive people for the most part.

    [mod edit]

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  • kb056kb056 redford, MIPosts: 423Member Common
    Its Kung Fu Panda, I really dont need to say anything more, do I?
  • KareliaKarelia HeraklionPosts: 668Member
    this review is really a joke...
  • maplestonemaplestone Ottawa, ONPosts: 3,099Member
    Originally posted by OG_Zorvan

    That min-max crap only applies to raiders, who like PvP'ers are not anywhere near the majority in any mmo.

    I found that the "anyone who isn't min-maxing is wasting my time" mentality infects enough people one randomly encounters that it makes even casual-friendly grouping mechanics like scenarios less than fun.

  • stefanakisgrstefanakisgr SerresPosts: 38Member

    I really didnt expect much from Mists of Pandaria , and I was pleasently surprised . No other world ever felt as alive as Pandaria .Open spaces feel like orient in every way , flora , fauna and landmarks alike . The farming subquest/minigame is fun , never tedious , and adds another layer to cooking . Which is embedded well into pandarien lore . The quests are well thought story wise , humorous when appropriate , and fun all around as well . Critter fights are fun as well . There's a million little improvements I also like , the ability to join in a quest boss fight and get credit , the revamped silver/rare mobs (that most of the time have a deadly special attack in pandaria ) , faster queu's , etc .

    If there is one thing I dont like , thats the talent revamp . Dont get me wrong , in the state they were , removing the illusion of choice was a good thing , but I expected a step in the opposite direction , more choice . Now its not even close to a character defining trait , more like a couple of optional abilities . 

     

    All in all I make the bold claim that this is the best expansion to Wow yet . For me at least . And a big surprise , as most of the guys here , when I heard panda's I thought that this might be the end of wow . It sounded ridiculous . Boy I was wrong . It is as much about implementation as anything else . The more I see , the more I like . 

  • CoolitCoolit FalkirkPosts: 468Member Uncommon

    I've got my main to 90; he’s got full heroic gear plus the valor chest and levelled a monk to 84. Personally I think it’s an ok expansion, certainly better than cataclysm but there’s nothing new except the daily quest grind at 90 if you want valor gear. There must be 60+ dallies to do, no wonder they removed the cap on them pre-launch. Also heroics are completely face roll even in green questing gear; they aren’t even slightly hard which is disappointing.

    So back on topic, I hate the way the talents have been changed, they just feel watered down and pointless, you could make all the "wrong" choices and it wouldn’t affect your character much. This is not how it should be.

    Really the talent system and general easiness of everything now are my biggest gripes, I guess I'm not alone considering it's got a 4.4/10 user score on metacritic.

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