Please bring back whoever designed Ulduar

100 Human Paladin
17210
I wish the design goals of pre-Ulduar were still the goals today.

I'm seeing huge burnouts in everyone I come across to raid with, and that's including myself. And the problem is an easy one to diagnose.

Hard modes are fun, and cool, and I understand how they make it so that one group of people can see some content while another group of people can then do it on a challenging difficulty. LFR further expands on this so that pretty much everyone can see the content now. That's neat... on paper.

In practice, most people are content - even unknowingly so - just seeing the content. They blow through it on LFR or normal mode, they had a blast and beat the game, and then they get into Heroic mode... and the elephant in the room that no one talks about becomes, "Why am I completely relearning this fight and driving my head against the wall because he has one or two extra mechanics, just to get literally identical loot that just has a few extra stat points?" Everyone gives it their best, but after a month or so, people start trickling away. They don't really care about killing hard modes now that even the loot is a cheap carbon copy of gear they already have. The incentive is too small.

It's like spending two weeks beating your favorite single player game, and then immediately turning around and replaying it a second time on a harder difficulty mode. Yeah, I think just about everyone tries it, but only a very small percentage of those people actually continue on and finish the game again - once you know what you're getting into, for most people I've encountered, that's enough excitement to feel okay with putting it back on the shelf.

Which doesn't sound that bad... again, on paper. So everyone had some fun, and the people who really wanted that challenge got it.

In practice, particularly in the World of Warcraft, the content is blown through ridiculously fast and it is assumed that heroic mode is where the actual "pacing" will occur. So I play with all of my friends for a week (and by a week, I mean 3 raid nights total), and then they disappear again, content that they have finished the latest chapter of the book. In fact, now they don't even have to play with me - instead of our MMO group experience, they can now queue up to read that book solo, and get most of the same enjoyment.

We then spend the next few months sadly seeing friends dripping away back to other games, the small percent of players who want to see the challenge through to the end drip away to other guilds, and we worry for another content patch whether the guild will continue to pull through. The next patch will see everyone coming back for a week, although a few have decided to permanently leave World of Warcraft altogether, and the cycle continues... again, and again, and again.

World of Warcraft raiding has become utterly depressing and not fun, at least as an MMO experience.
Edited by Applemask on 1/26/2012 12:41 PM PST
90 Blood Elf Priest
12170
01/26/2012 12:37 PMPosted by Ashva
Not in one toon.

Remember when alts were just that? Alts. Not every character needs to be main geared. Priorities.

01/26/2012 12:37 PMPosted by Ashva
I mean multiple. The greatest thing I liked about TOC was accessibility and it fit the theme. No thrash...just straight to bosses.

And that is the thing that most people hated about ToC. It lacked any sort of depth and was basically a tank and spank with a chest to loot at the end, literally.

01/26/2012 12:37 PMPosted by Ashva
I'm not saying Ulduar was bad but the time was huge. Also not everyone had a great raid group. Its like DS right now...

Which is why we have LFR now and will have it in the future.
63 Night Elf Warrior
0
01/26/2012 12:11 PMPosted by Kaivax
Yes, the same designers and artists who worked on Ulduar are still working on raids.


Then why was Dragon soul (outside of boss mechanics.) just rehashed models, including the map (Being it's dragonblight and EoE..) None of the boss models where new in content, Haggra had tier 2(?) Shaman gear...

Can you just tell us Dragonsoul was rushed please?

Or, are you actually paying them to do a copy paste job?
Edited by Clide on 1/26/2012 12:51 PM PST
85 Goblin Shaman
7150
01/26/2012 12:45 PMPosted by Ishko
Pushing a big red button for Mimiron was very cool, and again is fondly remembered. We have created something like 40 raid bosses since the creation of those encounters however, and we cant help but think that it would start to feel really gimmicky and forced if every raid encounter had its difficulty set by pushing a button, (or not killing adds, or changing the order you kill the bosses, or the other mechanics we used in Ulduar).


The OP only thinks it's special because he only did it once. If they had kepted up with the ulduar design, you'd complain that design is to over used.

Tell me again that I only did the fight once.

I am waiting...

~Arianenna
90 Human Priest
15575
01/26/2012 12:11 PMPosted by Kaivax
We have created something like 40 raid bosses since the creation of those encounters however, and we cant help but think that it would start to feel really gimmicky and forced if every raid encounter had its difficulty set by pushing a button, (or not killing adds, or changing the order you kill the bosses, or the other mechanics we used in Ulduar).


I understand by "pushing a button" you're directly referencing Mimiron's. However, now consider the method in which difficulty is set.. it *has* been the same for 40 bosses, pushing a button, flipping a switch. I agree: it really has become gimmicky.

I'd offer a suggestion for improvement, but, honestly, I don't have one. Perhaps it is time to do a tier without normal/hard switches (lfr would remain) and instead introduce mechanics within the fights which, once again, increase the difficulty but are entirely optional.
90 Draenei Death Knight
16200
Long raids mean longer development time


Then why did Firelands and Dragon Soul take sooo long? How is it we ended up with less than half the amount of bosses in this expansion, and what happened to the philosophy of having more content and fewer lockouts with Cataclysm? We were supposed to be getting more dungeons since 10 and 25-man shared a lockout, but instead we got fewer lockouts AND fewer dungeons AND dungeons that were much shorter than anything in wrath. (Counting ToC twice since it was 4 lockouts instead of 2)
100 Troll Druid
17485
Super excited to see a blue post that wasn't mainly an act of forum moderation! :D Go Go blue!
61 Dwarf Death Knight
160
Ulduar was cool but its not cool for someone who has an army of alts. You can only clear that place once or maybe twice a week. Not everybody has over 20 hours to clear the whole thing and its just like the blue said...

Most saw the first wing, maybe second but killing Yogg or Algalon was very long.


I think what you have is an army of mains, not alts. Designing raids for people to raid with multiple characters should not be a goal. But if you have the time then more power to ya.
90 Undead Priest
8945
I like Ulduar a lot, but personally I liked Karazhan so much more.
90 Blood Elf Priest
12170
01/26/2012 12:48 PMPosted by Ashva
Not really. It fit the theme perfectly. What did you expect from a tournament? What I find annoying is that sort of attitude because people miss the theme of the raid. What did you expect? Waves and waves of thrash? 20 rounds of bosses? Really?

The whole concept of ToC is what left people scratching their head going, "Really? *This* is a tier raid?" It had no depth, no "epicness" to it, and it was the biggest flop of a raid hands down. Had they made ToC a side raid like how ZA was, rather than making it a Tier Raid that made Ulduar obsolete, I don't think as many people would have had issues with it.

01/26/2012 12:48 PMPosted by Ashva
Just as you have your point on that a lot of people have alts they want geared. That road goes both ways and if Ulduar was like DS right now it simply wasn't possible. Not to mention that the sheer amount of bosses not every guild could and did blaze through Ulduar when it was out. Its the same thing with every raiding tier. Doesn't make Ulduar bad but a rather unique design only.

LFR. Wings. Extended Lock Outs. There are MANY ways to work around a raid being "too long" for the console generation.
90 Undead Priest
16610
Everybody that I know that has experienced Ulduar has said that it is the best raid every crafted by Blizzard, with a combination of unique hard modes, great environment and atmosphere, a whole lot of bosses (with some optional ones) and just an awesome story. The Flame Leviathan vehicle run was awesome, too.

With extended raid lockouts, there really is no reason to continue to give players small, singular raids. We don't want another content patch with 6-7 bosses in them. Big raids with different sections and quarters are the best, and Ulduar and Icecrown proved it. They made/make ToC and Dragon Soul look like jokes.
90 Blood Elf Priest
0
01/26/2012 12:11 PMPosted by Kaivax
Here's the thing -- Ulduar is an example of a raid where lots of players got to enjoy the first few bosses, and very few players ever saw the last few. Yogg Saron and Algalon were among the least-killed bosses ever, and not because they were exceedingly difficult. Rather, clearing the dungeon all the way to Yogg took up a big chunk of a raiding week (and you only had an hour to kill Algalon), and the ability to extend raid lockouts came later in 3.2.0 (but extending raid lockouts means getting less loot overall). Raid Finder partially resolves the length-of-raid problem, so we can consider designing longer raids, but that's not always an easy call. Long raids mean longer development time, and while some players might be willing to wait, we understand why others might get impatient.



Wings yo. ala ICC.

01/26/2012 12:11 PMPosted by Kaivax
Of course, having multiple raids in a tier (like the combination of Bastion of Twilight and Blackwing Descent) has the advantage of giving players different environments to play in while potentially making scheduling and logistics easier.



It doesn't have to be one raid. You can do multiples again, as long as you don't use it as a way to skimp on design when you guys are on the burner. :P
(RIP abyssal maw)

If we saw the same level of quality, and sheer amount of content that ulduar brought, we'd be fine. We haven't.

01/26/2012 12:11 PMPosted by Kaivax
Yogg Saron and Algalon were among the least-killed bosses ever, and not because they were exceedingly difficult.


You say that like it was a bad thing. ;) (as someone who didn't kill yogg till after TOC released).


I don't want to clear the teir in a week. I want to enjoy it, especially since it's going to take you atleast 6months for the next one, no matter how fast you go. :<

Hell, i don't even necesarily need to kill everything in a teir, with the possible exception of end of expac bosses.

01/26/2012 12:11 PMPosted by Kaivax
Nonetheless, because there are so many requests for those style mechanics, we are considering doing a few bosses with optional modes (in the same way Mimiron, Freya or Sartharion had them) in Mists of Pandaria.


<33333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333
85 Worgen Druid
9480
01/26/2012 12:28 PMPosted by Syrella
We waited 8 months for Firelands to come out with 7 bosses but we only waited 5 for Ulduar to come out with 14. I'm not sure how more raid bosses means longer wait time.


Ulduar was partially done already when WotLK was released and was actually originally meant to be in at release. Firelands to an extent also was but Cataclysm had it's own share of problems of them changing their minds fifty times and even going as far as scrapping an entire raid they announced and turning it into a 5 man. Cataclysm definitely isn't the best moment in WoW's history when it comes to things we were told about and what actually came when it came to the WotA raid and the Abyssal Maw. At least with WotLK we never actually were told we were going to get a Utgarde raid, for example, and it was brought up in later interviews as something they thought about (instead we had a entire zone dropped with Azjol-Nerub). TBC probably was Blizzards best moment when it came to what they announced and what we actually got and it'd be really nice if they worried less about over doing their marketing for an expansion and just announced what they know for sure will make it like they did back then.
Edited by Lupira on 1/26/2012 1:00 PM PST
90 Blood Elf Death Knight
7595
I wish the design goals of pre-Ulduar were still the goals today.

I'm seeing huge burnouts in everyone I come across to raid with, and that's including myself. And the problem is an easy one to diagnose.

Hard modes are fun, and cool, and I understand how they make it so that one group of people can see some content while another group of people can then do it on a challenging difficulty. LFR further expands on this so that pretty much everyone can see the content now. That's neat... on paper.

In practice, most people are content - even unknowingly so - just seeing the content. They blow through it on LFR or normal mode, they had a blast and beat the game, and then they get into Heroic mode... and the elephant in the room that no one talks about becomes, "Why am I completely relearning this fight and driving my head against the wall because he has one or two extra mechanics, just to get literally identical loot that just has a few extra stat points?" Everyone gives it their best, but after a month or so, people start trickling away. They don't really care about killing hard modes now that even the loot is a cheap carbon copy of gear they already have. The incentive is too small.

It's like spending two weeks beating your favorite single player game, and then immediately turning around and replaying it a second time on a harder difficulty mode. Yeah, I think just about everyone tries it, but only a very small percentage of those people actually continue on and finish the game again - once you know what you're getting into, for most people I've encountered, that's enough excitement to feel okay with putting it back on the shelf.

Which doesn't sound that bad... again, on paper. So everyone had some fun, and the people who really wanted that challenge got it.

In practice, particularly in the World of Warcraft, the content is blown through ridiculously fast and it is assumed that heroic mode is where the actual "pacing" will occur. So I play with all of my friends for a week (and by a week, I mean 3 raid nights total), and then they disappear again, content that they have finished the latest chapter of the book. In fact, now they don't even have to play with me - instead of our MMO group experience, they can now queue up to read that book solo, and get most of the same enjoyment.

We then spend the next few months sadly seeing friends dripping away back to other games, the small percent of players who want to see the challenge through to the end drip away to other guilds, and we worry for another content patch whether the guild will continue to pull through. The next patch will see everyone coming back for a week, although a few have decided to permanently leave World of Warcraft altogether, and the cycle continues... again, and again, and again.

World of Warcraft raiding has become utterly depressing and not fun, at least as an MMO experience.


QFE. I said basically the same thing in the Nerfs thread. Although not as elegantly, and with more cursing.
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