Cataclysm Post Mortem -- Dungeons and Raids

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90 Draenei Mage
12270
03/05/2012 06:18 PMPosted by Dajakisubo
I also saw no mention of how much NPCs factored into the Dragon Soul progression. As with many of the new old world quests, seeing so much interaction from the NPCs really kills the mood... it stops feeling like we're doing something, and starts to feel like we're just there to watch the NPCs be awesome. Thrall can scream about us being the only hope all he likes, it still feels like we're little kids helping our parents in the kitchen, not really doing anything significant while our parents assure us that we're being very helpful. At best, it's patronizing and unenjoyable, and at worst it's insulting.


A thousand times this.

Personally, the most fun I had with so much npc involvement in the raid was watching thrall channel into the dragon soul before ultraxion trash and /yelling NOM NOM NOM NOM NOM NOM NOM (seriously, look at him, its like a dog with peanut butter stuck in his mouth :) ). In the future I would seriously prefer a more active and personal role in the epic destruction of a end tier boss, MC Rag comes to mind. Also, completely lacking a fight with human form Deathwing was utterly disappointing, I would have taken that over spine 10000x.

And on a personal note, WHAT HAPPENED TO NEPTULON?!?!?!? Fragmented lore is the bane of my existence.

On a positive note, I absolutely loved Baston of Twilight and most of Firelands. Flying around on Alysrazor was quite possibly one of the most genius mechanics I have ever seen in this game, however I can see how normal mode would have made the people on the ground a bit bored.
90 Orc Shaman
12290
03/05/2012 06:52 PMPosted by Mìkas
Considering neither of you got full HM in DS even with a what is it....10% nerf now? I say they are doing a good job. And heroics are for gear and story telling not wiping.


Except we're not talking about raids. The paragraph is talking about 5man dungeons.

I can't always log on and get a full raid going whenever I like. (I used to, but just about everyone I knew quit after Tier 11)

I do know enough people to get 5mans going. Just because its less people doesn't mean it has to be so painstakingly easy compared to raids that dungeons are no longer fun.

I enjoyed hour+ long 5mans.
Q. What didn’t work out as planned or expected?
Initially, we started off the Heroic dungeons at too high of a difficulty. The difficulty level rather abruptly changed when compared to the Heroics players experienced at the end of Wrath of the Lich King. This major change caught many players off guard, and frustrated some of them. The difficulty also increased the effective amount of time required to complete a dungeon to a longer experience than we wanted. With the release of patch 4.3 we’re now in a much better place. We’ve always talked about being able to complete a dungeon over lunch, and the Hour of Twilight dungeons get us back to that goal. End Time, Well of Eternity, and Hour of Twilight all provide epic play experiences to our players, but at the real sweet spot of difficulty, complexity, and time commitment.


What didn't work out as planned, and you skipped over abyssal maw?!
--You forgot to mention as well that in terms of content this latest expansion so the least amount of raid content yet.


The hard content is a good thing for the game... Hard dungeons mean you spend time working hard with other to get through it. In addition the dungeon is a challenge for longer.
I would rather have the bosses automatically scale with the level of gear that the pug brings in, and then the loot tables adjust item level accordingly.

That's probably a lot more work than needed...

There was also the mention of making heroics at a gradient... You have easier heroic and then get harder.

A good template for this would be to model dungeons after BRD. You attune your self to the alter dungeon by completing the previous portion. Have the LFG reward pop after every 3rd or 4th boss and return the epic feel of the old instances.

True, there are those people that want to do a run in their lunch break. But that doesn't mean you have to cut the instance down in size you can make save points where you can quite while still getting the bonus JP.

90 Dwarf Warrior
14765
Blizzard often claims that they are their own biggest critics. This pretty much confirms that that is a lie.
34 Dwarf Shaman
150
Considering neither of you got full HM in DS even with a what is it....10% nerf now? I say they are doing a good job. And heroics are for gear and story telling not wiping.


I really do love this argument. "Nyah nyah, you only beat it with nerfs, so that means you needed the nerfs!" Uh, yeah, maybe if we were six months down the road, but every single raid group I've talked to who was working on Spine pre-nerf (and has killed it now) was progressing on it quite quickly and would have killed it in a few weeks if it hadn't been nerfed.

The hardest encounters on the hardest difficulty of a game aren't meant to be beaten in one raid lockout by anyone who isn't putting in 500 pulls a week. At least, I never thought that was the way it was supposed to be. If it is, maybe they should stop complaining about players rushing through their content too quickly, while they are simultaneously nerfing it so fast that players have no other choice.
Then why didn't you have it done before the nerfs? Still waiting on that kill I guess. And it wasen't fast at all..You have had months after the like what first 100 kills? And the nerf increased after another month just like they told you what would happen. You had your chance but it seems it was too difficult for you. 500 pulls a week? Try not to over exaggerate too much.
34 Dwarf Shaman
150
Considering neither of you got full HM in DS even with a what is it....10% nerf now? I say they are doing a good job. And heroics are for gear and story telling not wiping.


Except we're not talking about raids. The paragraph is talking about 5man dungeons.

I can't always log on and get a full raid going whenever I like. (I used to, but just about everyone I knew quit after Tier 11)

I do know enough people to get 5mans going. Just because its less people doesn't mean it has to be so painstakingly easy compared to raids that dungeons are no longer fun.

I enjoyed hour+ long 5mans.
Ok then I take it back from you, but still heroics aren't suppose to be mini raids..... that's what LFR is kinda is. There are going to be Heroic dungeon challenges for MoP, hopefully by then you can get 5 people together for them.
Edited by Mìkas on 3/5/2012 7:08 PM PST
90 Draenei Shaman
13090
I vehemently disagree with this. I absolutely loved all the NPC interaction in Dragon Soul. It made it feel like a more epic experience; I felt like a true hero, fighting alongside the most important figures from lore, as opposed to just some mercenary fighting for lootz.

Besides, what's the point of having lore figures if they don't do anything?


They didn't do anything anyway.

If this is your main, you clearly don't have a great deal of raid experience this expansion. Nothing against that, your opinion is as valid as mine, but if you haven't seen Sinestra, well, I recommend doing so somehow. That fight did RP right. It did not break up the action, it did not cause you to lose control of your character, it did not force you to stand around doing nothing for 5 minutes at a time while NPCs prattle on about how "it's up to you once again" ... like, really? Are you serious? We already know this. Why do we have to WAIT to go to Hagara? Why do we have to WAIT to start the Ultraxion trash (which is terrible?). The fact that these NPCs say "heroes!" every 5 seconds doesn't make me feel like a hero... it makes me feel like I'm playing a game with embarrasingly low quality design. It makes me feel embarrassed for the kids back in elementary school who get 7th place trophies when there are 7 competitors in track meets. It's bringing the weaknesses of the genre to the forefront and putting it on display. It feels cheap, contrived, forced.

If you want an epic experience, walk into Blackwing Descent for the first time, put your camera in first person mode, and walk up the stairs towards Magmaw. Just look at the outstanding visual design there. That was an epic feeling, and it didn't require any voice acting, it didn't require any NPCs, didn't require any cutscenes, didn't break up your experience or slow you down...

Oh how the mighty have fallen in such a short time.

Here is exactly why Burning Crusade is often considered to have a better raiding experience than Cataclysm has (for those who could get into it) and it's not because it was hard and elitist. The bridge leading to Lady Vashj had a really cool animation that caused it to form that you could see from the angle of the player without interrupting your chat, without interrupting whatever else you might be doing. The bridge leading to Majordomo had the annoyance of forcing a stop to whatever you were doing, making you watch a cutscene of a bridge forming instead of letting you watch it from the angle of the player, and had a way of causing a lot of annoying little UI issues, on top showing laziness with the cursor disappearing not allowing you to easily click "yes" on the skip cinematic confirmation window. Me? I'll pick option 1 any day. The BC version didn't waste people's time, and it wasn't annoying. Cutscenes, aside from having one after the final boss of an expansion, and occasionally during questing for important events, are terrible for the flow of the game. They do nothing but get in the way.


That's not to say DS is completely without its good points, like what Sky Captain Swayze says as he's being thrown off Deathwing's back was awesome, the faceless bosses had a cool, otherworldly, dark, alien feel to them that set a great mood once you got off the drakes. Morchok had a cool voice and heroic had an awesome (though easy) mechanic. Ultraxion's entrance (after the terrible trash) was cool. That's about it though, the rest of the zone had lofty goals and failed utterly at achieving them.
85 Orc Warrior
4995
Can we have heroic heroics in MoP? Because if cata heroics we're too hard in the beginning and we're going to see more HoT 5man difficulties i've lost all faith in the next expansion. My friends and I casually steamrolled cata heroics. Making things even easier is just so disappointing.
34 Dwarf Shaman
150
Probably futile. As soon as Blizzard proved that easy = $, we were all pretty much !@#$ed.

I don't see any developer going against that grain. The most you're going to get is token difficulty modes that have no actual reward but titles/cosmetic fluff, and aren't actual content on their own. (see GW2 dungeon modes)
Except the thing is that I'm not sure they have proved that "easy = $" given that WoW subs plateaued at the precise point that the game's difficulty took a nosedive. Correlation does not equal causation, of course, so we can't conclude anything from that either way unless we can somehow look into an alternate universe where tiers 7 and 9 weren't easier than RFC.

You are correct in that WoW and its players moving towards easier/smaller group content in PvE has influenced the design of all MMOs that came after it, though, most notably SWTOR.

In all honesty, if any MMO has a chance at becoming the game that hardcore WoW raiders want it's probably Blizzard's next MMO. Last I checked Jeff "Tigole" Kaplan was running that show, and if you'll recall he's the guy who everyone like to pin the blame for Vanilla's "raid or quit" endgame on, who left around the time LK launched. Everyone's assuming that Titan will be some ultra-casual Facebook bull!@#$, but I think it'd be more logical to make WoW the "casual" MMO while Titan becomes the "hardcore" MMO.
Pretty sure when heroics got harder, more people quit and it started to go down. And I'm sure somewhere on the vast interwebz is material saying Titan will be more of a casual game (that could mean something you just pick up....might mean no raids? who knows) I saw this said somewhere it was quite awile ago but yes all rumors.
Not nearly as interesting as the Fargo post-mortem as it doesn't really dig into any good stuff. Fargo really got into some good nitty gritty about what they did right & wrong in cata and how they were adjusting their strategies in MoP. this doesn't really help show how the lessons learned from cata will affect MoP. I thought these would provide a detailed analysis on Blizzard's thoughts going forward, instead this guy is just like "meh... cata was fine."

I disagree. Fargo did pretty much the same thing. Both interviews gush about the things that did work, downplay the things that didn't, and conveniently ignore all the major complaints from the playerbase.
90 Draenei Shaman
6405
03/05/2012 07:02 PMPosted by Brandonb
And on a personal note, WHAT HAPPENED TO NEPTULON?!?!?!? Fragmented lore is the bane of my existence.
This X1000000

Oh we're gonna reuse a bunch of models for ds boses and cut out a raid teir trolololol

Honestly one of the most dissapointing things in the expack was the lack of support for vashjir as a zone
90 Goblin Warlock
17060
So they think that overall, the raids and dungeons in cata turned out pretty well and that the major hitch seemed to be difficulty. That conclave and spine were some of their 'better' encounters. That big, impossible to miss text warnings of incoming threats is a good thing.

Anyone else even more worried about the pve content of mists now than they were before? Perhaps encounters in the future will have an associated text warning with every mechanic. I'm almost feeling like raiding this time next year will involve more reading than playing.
90 Orc Shaman
12290
03/05/2012 07:08 PMPosted by Mìkas
Ok then I take it back from you, but still heroics aren't suppose to be mini raids..... that's what LFR is kinda is. There are going to be Heroic dungeon challenges for MoP, hopefully by then you can get 5 people together for them.


I truly hope the challenge modes are actually challenges with CC, complex boss mechanics, require strict positioning, and other elements expected in a heroic raid.

The way they detailed them at blizzcon and on http://us.battle.net/wow/en/game/mists-of-pandaria/feature/challenge-modes makes it seem like they are pure time-trail versions of regular modes. There's no challenge in that; instead it promotes facerolling as fast as possible.
90 Worgen Mage
15160
I'm surprised that no mention about the difference in the 10 v 25 raid formats was brought up. Will this topic be discussed in any Post-Mortem discussion. I still feel that players are migrating way too much and way too quickly to 10 man raiding that 25 man raiding feels harder and harder to find groups that you can work with.


Funny, I was thinking much the same thing. For the first time in ages, there was a direct Blizzard post relating to Raids and Dungeons - and they still won't touch the subject with a 10 foot pole.

I note that even putting aside the above topic there were quite a few other issues and criticism from this expansion that also seemed to have been shoved off into a corner.

It is very concerning when reading an article like that as it appears that nothing was learnt from the Mistakes of Catalcysm which does not bode well for Dungeons and Raids in mists.

I have to say, in relation to Spine - while I can understand from the developers point of view the technicalities of designing the fight, from the players point of view, it does not feel like you are on his back. In fact you have to focus that much on what is happening in the very close range that you never get the opportunity to notice scale on that fight and tbh I didn't even see the roll animation until watching a video of the fight (when you can sit back and not play).

So from a players point of you, you may as well have had it in a small black room for all the feeling of "epicness" you get from the encounter.



34 Dwarf Shaman
150
Then why didn't you have it done before the nerfs? Still waiting on that kill I guess. And it wasen't fast at all..You have had months after the like what first 100 kills? And the nerf increased after another month just like they told you what would happen. You had your chance but it seems it was too difficult for you. 500 pulls a week? Try not to over exaggerate too much.


I'm not exaggerating. That's literally what top guilds do, and it's not like they're bad players either. Paragon did over 500 pulls on H Rag, and that was within the first two weeks as I recall. So that's at least 250 pulls a week, maybe more. The difference between a Top 10 US guild and a Top 100 US guild is typically time invested and organizational skills (multiple raid teams to pull people from for the perfect comp) more than individual skill.

My guess is you're just trolling here, so I'm not going to go into it in much more detail, suffice it to say that the first nerfs coming after there had been like... 6 actual weeks of heroic raiding? That's way too !@#$ing early. I'm not surprised that people who only raid normals think that that's a long time since Blizzard has made that content so easy that most guilds can clear it in the first week, if not the first day, but... well. That about says it all.

I look forward to a brave future where hard modes are cleared in the first week of every tier's heroics unlocking. Sounds fun and challenging!
I'm not talking about Paragon.....Because to be quite honest I assumed your guild is like a flea compared to them. By first kills I meant other guilds, not crazy world firsters. And even then you had more then enough time. It could be your guild had time constraints or needed to gear people up or w/e. Thing is you still had the time before it became too easy. And still goes to the other point you haven't finished it when it is "so easy". You are being hypocritical, you are the guilds that needs these nerfs and some still need a bigger nerf.
85 Draenei Warrior
1325
How about getting rid of this guy and giving us back Nyorloth?






10 Human Mage
20
I actually liked every raiding tier this expansion bar Dragon Soul, but I'm still disappointed that the "multiple smaller instances per tier in the mould of SSC/TK" philosophy never really survived past Tier 11.

One small 8 boss instance per tier isn't the way forward for this game and the thing that really surprises me is that after 7 years you guys still haven't learned that the number one cause of malaise in this game is farming the same things over and over again for extended periods of time :(
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