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Whatever happened to challenge?

QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 19,718
My recollection of Vanilla is that in most situations, if you pulled one group at a time, it was easy.  Pull two groups at a time and it's hard.  The latter may force you to burn some long cooldowns or lead to people dying, but wasn't necessarily a wipe.

Now, people pull three groups at a time intentionally, and it usually doesn't get anyone killed.  Sometimes they pull three groups at a time, one of which has a boss, even.  It means the healer has less time to heal before people die, but so long as he can play whack-a-mole effectively, no one dies.  Unlike in Vanilla, now everyone has infinite mana, at least apart from arcane mages, so a lengthy battle doesn't lead to people dying after the healer runs out of mana.

In some games, it's beneficial to pull a lot of mobs at once so you can AoE them down quickly.  But WoW has little AoE, and so pulling multiple groups simultaneously doesn't even make it go faster.  If anything, it makes it go slower because people have to stop to heal a lot more in combat, and time spent healing is time spent not dealing damage.  In some cases, it also means that mobs heal each other a lot more, which also slows things down.

And it still seems like most groups pull multiple groups of mobs at once intentionally.  It's not just accidents, either; I've seen tanks go intentionally pull three groups successively that were spread out considerably, to the extent that it would have been easier to pull one group at a time.  And if the tank doesn't go off and pull several groups at once, someone else probably will.

You might think it's just because I'm low level.  But I'm skeptical of that.  The other day, I saw someone in Orgrimmar complaining about how awful the random people in PUGs were for mythic dungeons.  His complaint wasn't that the groups were unable to finish.  It wasn't even that they wiped occasionally.  No, it's just assumed that if you throw random people who don't know what they're doing into a mythic dungeon, of course they'll complete it and get their loot.

Rather, his complaint was that they didn't rush through it to beat some timer, and it's unfair that they still got their loot for having cleared the dungeon.  Perhaps he didn't realize that that's the point of WoW:  you get an epic, and you get an epic, and you get an epic, and everyone gets an epic.  It's all about time spent playing; actually knowing how to play is only marginally relevant.

In Vanilla, it was at least possible to make given content arbitrarily easy or difficult by attempting it at a higher or lower level.  This had the enormous drawback that nearly all of the game's content was the wrong level for you.  On paper, level scaling should fix it.  The problem is that the level scaling scales things such that everything is way too easy for you.
t0nyd
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Comments

  • t0nydt0nyd Member UncommonPosts: 459
    edited November 27
    Not or sure if this is fact but if I had to guess most developers believe that challenge and player base are inversely proportional. When I look at a game like Eve, it's actually more difficult to learn than to play. There are a lot of people out there that want simple. Whether that be simple combat or simple design.

    With wow it seems they did everything in their power to simplify the game to appeal to the largest market. They tried to make looking for group easier, removed raiding for the most part, mostly all important gear is in instances so you don't have to compete with other players, and they even removed PVP servers. Blizzard seems to aim their games for the lowest common denominator player. I get it, they want to sell games. I think this is why their games aren't challenging.
    Post edited by t0nyd on
  • MechanismMechanism Member UncommonPosts: 124
    Speaking as someone who has played back in the golden age of vanilla and does mythic + dungeons and mythic raids today I much prefer the more perception based challenges today to the endurance based ones of a decade ago.
    Beezerbeez
  • XiaokiXiaoki Member RarePosts: 3,092
    Your observations of WoWs current state of difficulty is unsurprisingly wrong.

    So, you heard someone complaining about a PUG Mythic+ and now you think it's easy? And that Vanilla was harder?

    Do a Mythic+15. There is nothing in Vanilla WoW that comes close to being as difficult.
    You have to use CC, kiting, and every cooldown you have almost every group. And you can't outgear like the time Baron run.

    Some trash mobs in Mythic+ have more mechanics and strategy needed than early raid bosses in Vanilla.
    Nepheth
  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 19,718
    Xiaoki said:

    Do a Mythic+15. There is nothing in Vanilla WoW that comes close to being as difficult.
    You have to use CC, kiting, and every cooldown you have almost every group. And you can't outgear like the time Baron run.
    Fine then, I'll bite.  How do I do a Mythic+15 at low levels?  Where's the difficulty switch?  I don't see it.

    If a game is stupidly easy except for some tiny sliver of content that is buried behind a mountain of grinding so that hardly anyone will ever see it, then it's stupidly easy, period.

    I'm not claiming that the game was challenging in Vanilla.  Only that it wasn't this stupidly easy unless you actively tried to make it so.  Which most players did, and it annoyed me back then, too.  They'd take a level 60 to a level 40 dungeon.  At the level cap, they couldn't do that anymore, so they'd bring 10 players to a 5-man group dungeon.  The problems it that the level scaling seems to force you into that level of stupidly easy content, rather than it being optional as it was in Vanilla.

    For now, I've gone back to Kritika Online, where the challenging content starts at level 5.  Sure, it's a low budget game, and it shows in a lot of places.  But at least I'm not bored of going through the motions doing something completely stupid where people who actively try to wipe a group usually fail at it.
    MadFrenchieborghive49
  • parrotpholkparrotpholk Member RarePosts: 3,587
    Xiaoki said:
    Your observations of WoWs current state of difficulty is unsurprisingly wrong.

    So, you heard someone complaining about a PUG Mythic+ and now you think it's easy? And that Vanilla was harder?

    Do a Mythic+15. There is nothing in Vanilla WoW that comes close to being as difficult.
    You have to use CC, kiting, and every cooldown you have almost every group. And you can't outgear like the time Baron run.

    Some trash mobs in Mythic+ have more mechanics and strategy needed than early raid bosses in Vanilla.
    Mythic is a small part of the overall content and 90% of that content is just smashing 1,2,3 and it dies.  Vanilla was more challenging in that you had elite quests and overworld content that you could not do solo.

    If you have to make a mythic+ to make something challenging then you are doing it wrong.
  • VorthanionVorthanion Member RarePosts: 2,619
    Hasn't this been the tradition of MMORPG's?  The level grind is relatively easy until level cap, then all of the challenge and rewards are locked into the raiding content?  Even current action oriented MMOs follow this paradigm.  If they made all of the content challenging, they'd have to actually reward players accordingly and I'm sure to the utter dismay of raiders and power gamers.

    image
  • parrotpholkparrotpholk Member RarePosts: 3,587
    Hasn't this been the tradition of MMORPG's?  The level grind is relatively easy until level cap, then all of the challenge and rewards are locked into the raiding content?  Even current action oriented MMOs follow this paradigm.  If they made all of the content challenging, they'd have to actually reward players accordingly and I'm sure to the utter dismay of raiders and power gamers.
    Lately yes this is the case.  EQ, AC1, DAoC, FFXI, and others like them were not that easy of a level grind and the journey was better than the end game in some cases.  There are others where the level grind took a very long time as well but todays MMO is not that way.
    ZoeMcCloskey
  • TheocritusTheocritus Member EpicPosts: 6,410
    I always thought WoW was too easy from the get go....Especially compared to the MMOs that came before it.....It was the start of the "I want to be entertained and not challenged" player.
  • XiaokiXiaoki Member RarePosts: 3,092
    This thread started as a complaint about the difficulty in dungeons and now it's about difficulty while leveling in lower levels.

    Whatever you have to do to keep that hate boner strong I guess.
  • parrotpholkparrotpholk Member RarePosts: 3,587
    Xiaoki said:
    This thread started as a complaint about the difficulty in dungeons and now it's about difficulty while leveling in lower levels.

    Whatever you have to do to keep that hate boner strong I guess.
    Nope it is super easy the whole ride up.  No challenge in leveling in any content.  Regular dungeons and raids also are zero challenge.  Only the mythic +10 and up pose any real challenge to a organized group and that again is a small percentage of overall content in the game.  

    No hate involved just fact of the matter.  A 5 year old with no basic understanding of MMOs could level to 120 in current form.
  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 19,718
    Xiaoki said:
    This thread started as a complaint about the difficulty in dungeons and now it's about difficulty while leveling in lower levels.

    Whatever you have to do to keep that hate boner strong I guess.
    It's primarily about the difficulty or lack thereof when doing lower level dungeons.  Which is to say, nearly all of the dungeons in the entire game.

    I'm not necessarily asking for something super difficult.  But I am saying that if you screw up royally by, say, pulling three times as many mobs at once as you should have, there should be at least a significant chance of something negative happening as a result.  Right now, there really isn't unless the healer happens to disconnect or go AFK.
  • VorthanionVorthanion Member RarePosts: 2,619
    Hasn't this been the tradition of MMORPG's?  The level grind is relatively easy until level cap, then all of the challenge and rewards are locked into the raiding content?  Even current action oriented MMOs follow this paradigm.  If they made all of the content challenging, they'd have to actually reward players accordingly and I'm sure to the utter dismay of raiders and power gamers.
    Lately yes this is the case.  EQ, AC1, DAoC, FFXI, and others like them were not that easy of a level grind and the journey was better than the end game in some cases.  There are others where the level grind took a very long time as well but todays MMO is not that way.
    I don't consider the length of the grind as a qualifier for challenging content.

    image
  • AlbatroesAlbatroes Member EpicPosts: 5,376
    edited November 29
    OP, I dont think what you are looking for is challenge but more along the lines of exclusivity, which probably is something a step further than challenge. Using your example of Vanilla, things were more so tedious than 'challenging' but it forced you to be prepared. Potions/food/etc were valuable and could get expensive over time. Couple that with needing money for skills since they weren't just given every time you leveled up as well as being aware of which skill levels you needed right away more so than others. Older games forced most people that played them (you can never say all) to constantly think how to become more efficient/conserve/or even look for help if they wanted things to go smoother. Then you get to endgame where you are with people who more-than-likely knew how to play their class given how tedious it was to reach cap.

    Grinding existed heavily in old games for sure but the tedium added an element of worth to the grind which usually made it rememberable for most people. Now games just have 'grinds' for the sake of having grinds with fleeting rewards that you wont even remember. I played FFXI for nearly 10 years and I can still remember clearly when I got my RDM AF2 hat from dynamis-xarcabard 8 years ago. Most people you talk to who play wow today can't even remember a drop they got from Argus-Mythic if they got the clear, that's the state of gaming we live in today.

    One important thing is human nature. Humans never want things more difficult for the sake of being more difficult. Its like those people who QQ about wanting no flight when they could simply just not fly, right? But that goes back to my first thing of exclusivity. If you can get through that tedium, it does feel worth it and you can share moments that felt like they were just yesterday with people who are at the same level as you. Right now in wow, people aren't going to care if you can clear a M+15 on time because the ilvl will go up by January/Febraury and warfronts/M0/incursions etc will give the same ilvl as current heroic uldir. Then you're left with the 70% of the people that might care about gearing just buying a M10 clear, do their emissary and log off until the following day or do the same thing on an alt.
    Post edited by Albatroes on
  • BeansnBreadBeansnBread Member RarePosts: 6,657
    Instead of pulling three groups, pull four groups.
  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 19,718
    Albatroes said:
    OP, I dont think what you are looking for is challenge but more along the lines of exclusivity, which probably is something a step further than challenge. Using your example of Vanilla, things were more so tedious than 'challenging' but it forced you to be prepared. Potions/food/etc were valuable and could get expensive over time. Couple that with needing money for skills since they weren't just given every time you leveled up as well as being aware of which skill levels you needed right away more so than others. Older games forced most people that played them (you can never say all) to constantly think how to become more efficient/conserve/or even look for help if they wanted things to go smoother. Then you get to endgame where you are with people who more-than-likely knew how to play their class given how tedious it was to reach cap.

    Grinding existed heavily in old games for sure but the tedium added an element of worth to the grind which usually made it rememberable for most people. Now games just have 'grinds' for the sake of having grinds with fleeting rewards that you wont even remember. I played FFXI for nearly 10 years and I can still remember clearly when I got my RDM AF2 hat from dynamis-xarcabard 8 years ago. Most people you talk to who play wow today can't even remember a drop they got from Argus-Mythic if they got the clear, that's the state of gaming we live in today.

    One important thing is human nature. Humans never want things more difficult for the sake of being more difficult. Its like those people who QQ about wanting no flight when they could simply just not fly, right? But that goes back to my first thing of exclusivity. If you can get through that tedium, it does feel worth it and you can share moments that felt like they were just yesterday with people who are at the same level as you. Right now in wow, people aren't going to care if you can clear a M+15 on time because the ilvl will go up by January/Febraury and warfronts/M0/incursions etc will give the same ilvl as current heroic uldir. Then you're left with the 70% of the people that might care about gearing just buying a M10 clear, do their emissary and log off until the following day or do the same thing on an alt.
    No, exclusivity is not what I'm after here.  What I'd like is for it to be difficult enough that people have to adjust their tactics, pull more carefully, use some crowd control sometimes, and things like that.  And then for most groups to make that adjustment and still clear the dungeon.
    TEKK3N
  • NevereverlandNevereverland Member UncommonPosts: 114
    thats exactly why me and almost 10k people right now plays in the same wow vanilla private server :)
    TEKK3Ndeniter
  • deniterdeniter Member RarePosts: 1,264
    Challenge is still there. They are just better players now. ;)
  • TEKK3NTEKK3N Member RarePosts: 456
    deniter said:
    Challenge is still there. They are just better players now. ;)
    Nope.
    Play Vanilla WoW on private servers., it's a totally different gameplay.
    A WoW live player would struggle to keep the discipline and methodical preparation you need to play the Vanilla content efficiently.
    You can't pull more than a group at a time, even if you are Jesus Christ.
    Same for solo play, 2 mobs top, more than that and you are dead or almost.
    Kyleran
  • deniterdeniter Member RarePosts: 1,264
    TEKK3N said:
    deniter said:
    Challenge is still there. They are just better players now. ;)
    Nope.
    Play Vanilla WoW on private servers., it's a totally different gameplay.
    A WoW live player would struggle to keep the discipline and methodical preparation you need to play the Vanilla content efficiently.
    You can't pull more than a group at a time, even if you are Jesus Christ.
    Same for solo play, 2 mobs top, more than that and you are dead or almost.
    Yep, currently playing warlock on the 10k player server and i have to cast fear on third mob i pull. On retail they pull 7-8 mobs at once, but they are - as being said - better players now. ;)
  • alkarionlogalkarionlog Member RarePosts: 1,871
    strange, wow was never hard, or challeging to begin with
    FOR HONOR, FOR FREEDOM.... and for some money.
  • TEKK3NTEKK3N Member RarePosts: 456
    strange, wow was never hard, or challeging to begin with
    I think we need to stop using terms such as 'hard' or 'challenging', because that causes some misconception.
    Let's say that Vanilla WoW was more 'intense' and required more preparation and focus than the current version.
    That's probably a better definition everyone should agree on.
  • DerrosDerros Member UncommonPosts: 1,196
    edited November 29
    TEKK3N said:
    strange, wow was never hard, or challeging to begin with
    I think we need to stop using terms such as 'hard' or 'challenging', because that causes some misconception.
    Let's say that Vanilla WoW was more 'intense' and required more preparation and focus than the current version.
    That's probably a better definition everyone should agree on.
    I would disagree with that, it simply felt slower. Then again I leveled as a resto druid in Vanilla. I couldn't die, but everything took forever to kill.
    Post edited by Derros on
  • ThaneThane Member RarePosts: 3,021
    edited November 29
    Xiaoki said:
    Your observations of WoWs current state of difficulty is unsurprisingly wrong.

    So, you heard someone complaining about a PUG Mythic+ and now you think it's easy? And that Vanilla was harder?

    Do a Mythic+15. There is nothing in Vanilla WoW that comes close to being as difficult.
    You have to use CC, kiting, and every cooldown you have almost every group. And you can't outgear like the time Baron run.

    Some trash mobs in Mythic+ have more mechanics and strategy needed than early raid bosses in Vanilla.
    well, you obviously didn't play classic wow, did you?

    a) if you use eeeevery cool down on every group, quite frankly, your mythic times suck.
    b) "You have to use CC, kiting, and every cooldown you have almost every group." that actually was very close to normal instance runs back then

    the prob nowadays? to actually find people who won't leave your fucking raid or guild after 1 whipe and jump to another random guild who just fucking formed.
    Post edited by Thane on
    MadFrenchie

    "I'll never grow up, never grow up, never grow up! Not me!"

  • NephethNepheth Member RarePosts: 350
    I don't like a lot of things about BfA at the moment and that's why I quit playing WoW. But challenge is not one of them. The game has plenty of content towards hardcore playerbase and like Xiaoki said, right now game has much more complicated and challenging content than Vanilla ever had.

    Vanilla was a lot more time consuming with annoying farm aspects and game mechanics and most importantly the game was complately fresh back than. You didn't have enough information on what to do and you didn't now the mechanics and your class well enough to put out your real performance in the game. Right now you have all of these but fighs are much more complicated and challenging.
  • TEKK3NTEKK3N Member RarePosts: 456
    Derros said:
    TEKK3N said:
    strange, wow was never hard, or challeging to begin with
    I think we need to stop using terms such as 'hard' or 'challenging', because that causes some misconception.
    Let's say that Vanilla WoW was more 'intense' and required more preparation and focus than the current version.
    That's probably a better definition everyone should agree on.
    I would disagree with that, it simply felt slower. Then again I leveled as a resto druid in Vanilla. I couldn't die, but everything took forever to kill.
    I agree, it was slower, but there was a reason for it.
    It wasn't just a matter of HP and DPS.

    And if you pulled 3 mobs instead of 2, you would probably die with your Druid.
    If you do the same with a Live Druid though, it's like you are not even trying.
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