July 6, 2011

My Review of 4.2 Patch for WoW

It's been a few weeks, and not because I was scared off by some internet bullies, much to their dismay. Actually, I've been trying to think up something to write on and when I would actually start writing on a topic I would either end up losing focus on it, or just sort of hit a wall. In short, I guess I had writer's block and I have at least half a dozen word documents of unfinished thoughts just sitting on my computer probably needing to be finished someday. Who knows, I might actually spend this entire month doing just that.

However, 4.2 has now been out for a week, most of it has settled into the populace at large. Many people have done the content that has already been offered, and I am sure there are opinions on all sides of how they view it. For me, the update changed a few core mechanics and such and I can understand why the changes were made. But that's not really the major discussion here. I am going to talk about the story changes for WoW in 4.2 since story is more of what I am about anyways.

If you haven't done the stories for 4.2, then consider this your spoiler warning. Considering the rewards tied to both of these content updates, I find it hard to believe the majority of people haven't done them, but there is always someone. Regardless, if you don't want the story to be ruined, and want to find out for yourself, then I suggest you stop reading at this point and go have a latte or something.

Now, to get it out of the way from my personal perspective, this patch has created a mild frustration for me. Though it's not a show stopper bug, it's still on my list of bugs that should have been fixed already with the numerous hot patches that have been coming down since the big patch went out. Needless to say, this is a targeting bug. In short, this bug occurs quite frequently for melee specific players, no idea about ranged.

The bug is this, anytime a critter dies, you will, most of the time, automatically retarget that critters corpse. This is regardless if you manually targeted something else or tab targeted, you will automatically highlight and continue to attempt to attack the corpse. And I've ended up doing this retargeting three times on the same corpse before in a fight, and as a tank and melee DPS, this is an extremely frustrating bug to have to deal with. And it's not something you can notice straight away due to visual bugs with it to, such as the highlighted corpses still registers as a red, instead of grey, marker leaving you thinking you are on a new target. This is a result of lost DPS and tank threat for those in melee that are being pummeled by this bug. This should be a priority fix for Blizzard.

Now that that is out of the way, I am sure there are other bugs that concern people, but as melee that certainly is a borderline showstopper and not something that should be lasting already over a week since the patch has gone out. Of course there comes the heart of the other sole issues that have arisen since this patch as well.

Blizzard seems to take everything they have learned from the past and completely ignore it. And it simply amazes and astonishes me at the same time how they just keep repeating the exact same mistakes to. After Cataclysm and Tol Barad became available, Blizzard thought they could get people interested in winning by inflating the honor for winning to phenomenal levels. Oh it caused sides to swap, but people only went to get free honor. And people like me when the proposed change was announced stated, "People aren't even going to fight they are going to just change sides for quick and easy honor," and sure enough they did. So much so that Blizz had to hot fix that update out before the week was out when that change went live.

This time, a new mistake is the new content. Blizz promised there would be tons of quests, that you would never feel like you are repeating them, etc, etc, etc. Problem is, I do feel like I am repeating the same quests, because at least three of them I do every damn day. Eight days in and I've done at least three of the dailies eight times already. Oh there is a shuffle up, but there is only like a difference of two or three quests in the entire playlist, so in all I've repeated the same quests at least three times each now.

This isn't even the half of it either. In this case, the whole Molten Front thing takes twenty tokens to get started. Sounds fair, that's like two or three days worth of work in the grand scheme and the entire start of the storyline for this. But once you get past that and actually assault the Molten Front, you don't have one but two NPCs that require 150 tokens each to unlock and proceed further into this whole thing. Let's be factual about this. At most, currently for me, I get fourteen tokens a day. That's 11 days worth of grinding to get one of these guys unlocked. It is required to get both unlocked to proceed to the part that everyone wants to get involved with, the crafting unlocks. That's twenty-two days, maybe twenty-one if a new quest line opens up with the new contact. And on top of that, to get one of the crafting contacts, that is an additional 125 tokens if I read WoWHead correctly. So all in all, that's something akin to thirty-one days worth of farming just to get one of the contacts to unlock the craftable recipes.

Here's the kicker. People are farming the Firelands raid instance and getting drops of the trash mobs that are far superior than what is offered. This has been going on since day one of the patch. In fact I saw a death knight wielding a sweet two hander from that instance that I was slightly drooling over. And then there is the common complaint from the raiders, the older raids were made easier and such and so forth but that is just something to not really make myself concerned over honestly.

So why is it a craft able unlock required a minimum of thirty-one days worth of work (mind you I didn't do the math or look at the total quests that could be unlocked so I took a guesstimate) of solid grinding? The weapons are only Bastion of Twilight normal raid worthy and the armor requires stuff that only drops in the Firelands raid. This is just plain ridiculous and demonstrates that Blizzard just likes repeating the exact same mistakes. I will have to say whoever completes the near two months worth of grinding for all the stuff for the Molten Front should be committed, which I will probably be reserving my room since I have a compulsion to finish stuff. Don't ask me why, but honestly, Blizzard needs to rethink this, there is no reason this stuff should take nearly two months to complete when people will probably be downing Rag before the month is out.

Now, onto another bit about 4.2 I was somewhat okay with, but mostly disappointed at; Thrall's Story Arc. First and foremost I have nothing against the character. He's just become Blizzard's Mary Sue and I think everyone realizes that. Hell, with Cataclysm they've literally turned Thrall into Jesus, right down to how he is dressed now. He's the most powerful religious figure (shaman) of his people and everyone, he literally held the world together when the Cataclysm hit, damn the rest of those shamans who helped, and if given enough time he would of probably found the cure for at least seven different strains of cancer, HIV, and the common cold. This character has literally come to a point where he can do no wrong and he really doesn't have what a good story character needs; flaws.

And you can tell they are stroking themselves off over at Blizzard over Thrall to. Thrall has received more graphically, animation wise and even lore wise in just two updates than any two characters combined outside of major villains in the entire World of Warcraft storyline. From his Jesus of Nazeroth appearance right down to the fact he has an animation, facial expression and action for everything he says and does throughout his entire question chain. I am dead serious, he has separate facial expressions and mouths his words almost perfectly compared to the sock puppet lip animation every other character has in this game. Way to stay classy Blizz.

But that comes in the form of the second half of the equation. A character that comes out of nowhere, no one knew about, and has no place in this story; Agra. I don't know what Blizzard was thinking with this. It's either they thought interracial stuff was too risqué or their head writer just forgot all the lore that came before, however for whatever reason Agra is now Thrall's love interest and any story, chemistry and plot lines involving Jaina, even within WoW itself, magically vanished. Hell to add salt to a gaping wound to the fans of those two, they had Jaina right there at the wedding just staring, and Thrall didn't even acknowledge her presence and nothing was actually ever said.

I'm sorry, but this is just crappy writing and story. We got a love interest we never knew about being forced into everyone's face, like we were suppose to care. This is like a Michael Bay move here. Blizzard just shuffing a finger at the people who loved the storyline of Thrall and Jaina. Agra has one personality to, and it comes off painfully throughout the entire quest line. The voice talent can't even seemingly express any emotions outside of the typical just sounding like she was reading her lines, cause even when she felt heart broken in her words it just sounded forced. So in short we have a love interest we don't care about being thrust in our faces like she's been there all along, and they even try to say she's been there since The Burning Crusade expansion, and of course Jaina isn't even mentioned, acknowledges or given credit for anything at all during this. To me, and I know to a lot of the fans of the lore, this was just another slap in the face.

Over all, this update was just dismally disappointing. From the half baked statements of claiming there were tons of new quests that were false, to the Michael Bay style plotline with Thrall, to even the obvious they aren't even thinking about it anymore set ups that would take people longer to do the quests than to just wipe several dozen times in PUGs to get the same quality gear. Hell, I've already seen a rapid decline in people participating in the Molten Front, the ones that complete it will probably be very few. It's sad when you think rep grinding would be faster.


  1. Not sure I understands yer complaint. Buggers can get better gear by raiding than they cans by doing a handful of easily soloables dailies fer a few weeks? Well, yeah. How else would ya do it? The Molten Front dailies is so non-raiders (or alts of raiders, or raiders what need off-spec gear) can gets they some 365 gear if'n they wants. Is not meant fer ta be as good as raiding but at 1/10th the effortizations.

  2. Except it takes more effort. It simply amazes me how raiders make it sound like raiding it hard work. It's not. It never has been. It's content that is suppose to open up, the fact it takes so long to open up that content is ridiculous in itself.

    In short, trying to say that geared from two patches ago raid quality from craftables that don't compare to teh new raid that people have been farming and getting gear on already just off of trash is a bit short sited when the effort to put in takes much longer. It's simply short sighted.