Wednesday, May 13, 2009

A rant about our fear of temporary changes

I will start this post by throwing the first stone at myself. I’m not better than anyone of those people that I’m about to attack. It happens that I whine too, and I’ve probably bitched a bit myself in the past. But I’m not worse than I can change my mind, OK?

Now with this settled, I just want to let my heart out about a thing that is bothering me: the conservatism of the WoW community, at least the vocal part of it. It’s absolutely astonishing.

Whenever there’s a small temporary change in the game mechanics, people go nuts about it, complaining, bitching, moaning, whining about the cruelness and stupidity of the developers. Eventually they manage to create a negative atmosphere around the whole event, effectively taking the fun out of it for everyone else, even those that from the beginning didn’t have any clear opinion about it of their own.

The scourge invasion
For instance it happened before the launching of WotLK, with those infectious scourge running around in the capitals. Do you remember? I was sulking and bitching myself! Maybe not in this blog, but at least in my head, and probably in whispers to people I know. Now afterwards I just want to apologize. I was dead wrong and I’m sorry about it.

Blizzard gave us a twist, a new sort of challenge, something we had to figure out how to deal with on our own, not by doing what we’re always doing. And how did we react? We tossed the gift away, like spoiled kids. It wasn’t like the game was going to be like that forever. It was a matter of weeks or even a few days, since they were forced to stop it sooner than they had planned (even though they’ll never admit they did). But we couldn’t cope with it because our bank alts were killed. Seriously, our reactions were completely out of proportion.

Children’s week
The outcry about the Children’s week achievement last week is another example of it. I’ve complained about it a bit myself, not aloud, but in my head. I was thinking about writing a post about the stupidity of forcing PvE players to go to the BGs, thus destroying the gameplay altogether for the PvP:ers, since our incentives were completely different to theirs.

I /signed wholeheartedly at the well put rant of Euripides, who suggested that the achievements should rather have been about winning the BG:s. In that way the motives of the regular PvPers and the temporary PvPers chasing achievements wouldn’t interfere. But giving it a second thought I’ve changed my mind.

Yeah, I know it was a pain to get it done. It took me quite a few hours to succeed. Especially I remember a WG that went on and on forever. Both sides refused to attack, just assembling in respectively flag room, orphans up, waiting for someone to come so they could retake the flag. The situation was quite absurd.

On the other hand: was it really so bad? They screwed up the BGs the way they’re normally played, but they gave us something else, a new sort of PvP. I caught myself many times thinking that the true opponents in BG wasn’t horde, but alliance players, competing with you to capture a flag or a tower. You had to invent new strategies on the fly. Was it best to sneak, wait for another alliance player to do something brave and foolish, and then grab the chance? Or should you by emotes and telepathy try to convince the achievement junkies on the horde side to cooperate with you?

You could pick up some strategic advice from bloggers about how to do it, but in the end, there wasn’t just The way to complete this, since the BGs varies a lot, from server to server and battle to battle, depending on the players. You had to think for yourself. It was unpredictable and actually rather fun, if you just didn’t cling so desperately to the idea that everything in Azeroth always should be the same.

A new approach
I’ll end this rant with a promise, which I hope you’ll hold me to.

Read my lips:
Next time there will be a game-mechanics changing temporary event for a week, I’ll refuse to join The Leage of Organized Whiners. I’ll open my eyes, try to see the new and fun in it and adapt to the situation.

Seriously, those things don’t break the game for us. They shake us up a bit, which is exactly what we need sometimes, whether we realize it or not. They break the routine and the grind that we constantly complain about, the repetition that we find so boring.

They’re not a problem. They’re a possibility.


Misneach said...

This is a fantastic post.

When they did the scourge invasion, I complained a bit to my wife and in /gchat. But now, thinking back, it really was kind of fun trying to find ways to deal with it.

Sure, trying to auction something or hit a capital city bank was a nightmare, but it was temporary and it created a new challenge that broke the monotony for a bit.

Again, great post.

Fulguralis said...

/clap. I have steered clear of jumping on that bandwagon myself as far as writing goes, opting instead to just choose what I think is fun about it and try to write about that (hence my string of in-character stuff lately...). Sure I won't get a spiffy mount or very many titles, but that's not why I play the game. Just because it's offerred doesn't mean you need to do it. Personally, I like the challenges even though I may complain at first.

All in all, trying to twist things positive is a good mentality to have and we could all benefit from some of this.

Dw-redux said...

Great post yet again. Even if i do not agree.
And I dont.
I luved the zombie attacks, and the only thing bugging me was the fact that i couldnt stay a zombie for very long.
The lore and story of it was great, you felt part of the game all over again, it was new, it was different and noone knew how the next step would be. It was SUPER.

The holiday events on the other hand. They are just poorly designed, and they shouldnt have given a massive mount in the end for em, for two reasons: now you have people that dont really *want* to do the event and moan about how long it takes, so they can get their fast mount and titles, also by design, all of these events encourage selfishness and individualism. Like your example of the bgs, or the one ive used on my blog about the eggs. God, noblegarden, just the word makes me shivver. Why design an event that encourages lootwhoring, griefing and camping. ive only met one person who thougth it was fun. Our guild grinder. He took a night from around 1am to 7 am and got everything done somewhere in that time. He thought it was fun, easy and smooth... I wonder why.

Eaten by a Grue said...

I am a little out of the loop because I have not played in a while, but what is the point to the achievement? Is there a reward?

I heard it mentioned that usually there is no reward, and so it puzzles me as to why people want to do them. Even from a collector's mindset, it has to be super frustrating. There are thousands of achievements, and since it is not possible to get them all, why even try?

Does this game specifically cater to the OCD in people? If so, I think this is evil.

Anonymous said...

Do you think part of it is that the people who are cool with the temporary changes aren't so outspoken about it?

But now I'm wondering if I'm too resistent to changes in my schedule in RL also. I think I'm now inspired to be more open to changes in game and iRL ... lets see how that goes! :)

Klepsacovic said...

I loved the Scourge invasion. I talked about how much I loved it. But I'm not sure if I had anything worth reading back then, not to claim anything now. :P I was actually a little disappointed that it didn't get even worse, also that since the infection was based on number of hits, regardless of damage taken or CLASS, tanking the goblins was impossible. What you'd have expected to be a paladin event was instead perfect for ranged like mages and warlocks. Warlocks?

Oh hey look, me heaping praise on the zombie event and right after whining about paladin nerfs.

I guess we're all guilty. We must all do our part. My plan is to heap praise on nothing changing.

HP said...

I think people complain just to complain. There are just so many different WoW players with different temperaments that there will always be a complaint about something =X

I'm having fun so far and I loved the Scourge event especially the trinket you got that summoned a pally that would bubble/hearth!! As for the Children's Week PVP Achievements, I don't think they were that difficult and didn't have to go out of my way to get them. Then again, I am one of the few PVE'ers that don't mind doing BGs

Fitz said...

/agree with HP. I am a PvE player who likes to BG from time to time. My only complaint is that the way "School of Hard Knocks" was written warped the BG experience and made everyone unhappy. I still maintain that making you win each BG would have allowed PVP'ers to show off their part of the game and maybe increase interest in BG's. As it was, the PVP'ers fled fromt he scene for a week or did their best to impede the achievement hunters. Capturing a flag in EOTS is not nearly as important as holding towers, Leaivng the zerg to cap a tower in AV is not condusive to team victory, etc etc.

However, I was not complaining personally about it because I enjoy the mix of PVE, travel, and PVP things in these holidays. I'd do them without the drake reward to be honest, but maybe that's because I am relatively new to the game.

Still, I agree wholeheartedly on the zombie event. I'm very happy I logged in multiple times in those 2 days to experience that event because that's the only true wolrd event I've seen in Azeroth and I mourn the loss of storyline and RP that could've led to WOTLK's release when Blizzard cut the event short.

Anonymous said...

With the scourge event...I just KNEW the next step was mass chaos. I was hoping the scourge plague would be flowing forth from the city walls, spreading the disease through the country side. I was hoping that places like Westfall would become a safe haven for those trying to escape the over run city of Stormwind. Then...and only then would we all understand what Arthas went through in making the decisions that led him to become a death knight.

Cutting it short made it an event.

Letting in run could have made it so much more. It could have been an experience.

It just goes to show, it is in our human nature to give the crying child more attention. Unfortunately for those who enjoyed it, we only witnessed an event, left to ponder what could have been.

Barrista said...

I LOVED the scourge invasion. I loved the fact that they intro'd something new. I think people didn't like being changed into scourge in their cities while they had things to get done. But honestly, after running my errand, I would wish someone would come along and infect me (alas, never happened).

People mainly complain about changing their class mechanics. They have to learn something new. It's not unique to this game. If someone came along and changed how your car worked, you might be a bit upset until you learned how to drive again. People like routine in some instances.

As for the holidays, I didn't care for either of the last 2. I didn't bitch. I just decided that if I didn't like them, I could ignore them. That a title wasn't worth being annoyed for 2 weeks.

Green Armadillo said...

I don't believe that the duration of an event alters the importance of it being well-implemented.

DW-redux above comments that he felt the lore of the Scourge invasion was immersive, but I feel that the opposite was true. If the event had actually been real - beat back this invasion or all your characters and cities stay zombies FOR GOOD - it actually would have been immersive, and players actually would have fought the plague until the very end. Instead, we had an event with zero reward for defending your town (the zombies keep coming), non-zero cost for the futile attempt to defend your town (repair bills when killed), and a poorly thought-out interaction with the sanctuary status of Shattrath. The only people who had an actual incentive to participate were the griefers, who could, for one weekend only, grief as they never could before, and so that's exactly what ruled the event.

In short, the complaint is NOT that they shook things up, but that they did so in a way that was poorly throught-out. Unfortunately, temporary events will always run that risk, because you can't spend 100% effort on an event that's going to go away after a week.

Sprink said...

I actually started playing during the scourge invasion. I believe my exact words were "Are things always this crazy?"

And I loved it. Loved every minute of the chaos, the 'what's going on' and everything. I even asked if events like that were a normal thing.

If only more holidays were like that... ^_^

Misneach said...

Let me add that there was nothing more ominously cool than walking out of Ironforge and seeing a huge necropolis floating outside.

Yeah, we need more of that.

Anonymous said...

this is probably going to be the first time I'm going to disagree with you.

I hated scourge invasion. I stopped playing outright after a few days until the zombie part of it was over. being a zombie was fun for a few hours. getting turned into one before your loading screen was finished, being ganked over and over even inside neutral zones was NOT fun. zombie event turned WoW into a warzone with no escape. and unlike in real life, if you hid in a forest, there was really nothing to do there but sit and wait (at least in real life, you can gather plants, build shelter and generally improve your situation with your own actions - in WoW, you were just a sitting duck)

Children's week pvp section was the last straw that turned me off actively trying to get the violet drake. no big deal though as there are other thing that I can do and actually enjoy.

Flexibility is all nice and good and going with a flow is wonderful. trying things out even if they don't seem like something you'd enjoy is a sign of open mind. Doesn't mean you have to end up liking it, or accept everything that's thrown at you like its some sort of wonderful gift.

We have our preferences and our likes and dislikes and I don't think there's anything wrong with it. Children's week doesn't annoy me much because I have a choice NOT to participate in it. what pissed me off about zombie invasion was that you had 2 choices. live with it or stop playing. it was force fed down your throat and god forbid you dared saying anything against it.

QQ moar.

the thing about real life is that all too often our choices are limited and we have to grin and bear it for the sake of our future, our families. we need to deal with unpleasantness, we have to do what must be done regardless of our personal likes or dislikes. I don't know the exact percentage of adults vs children then play WoW, but from personal experience - there are more then plenty. and I don't think we need yet another lesson in inevitability of some things.

some possibilities are not really possibilities but rather a proverbial last straw, something that finally forces you to open your eyes and cut your losses.

the day that Blizzard takes away my playing choices and tells me that I have to play their way or else. I'll stop playing.

Khaelie said...

i loved the scourge invasion. no bank alts killed here (i must be the only person who has not made a bank alt yet...). i enjoyed doing the quests during the invasion and getting my tabard and i still have the necklace in my bag so i have a ghost that follows me everywhere.

i also enjoyed the "school of hard knocks" and it only took me 5 BGs to get them all done. i had to do warsong gulch twice because there was a player that wouldnt let anyone else return the flag... even if we were right there with our orphan. but no worries here, i got it in the next one. of course, i like to do BGs anyways... so it was fun for me.

there is always going to be stuff that doesnt please everyone. and the people who dont like something are always going to be the loudest.

Delbin said...

The scourge invasion was an awesome event. What ruined it were the people too narrow-minded to enjoy it. The reeking negativity and selfishness of these people astounded me.

People were complaining that they couldn't get their /dalies/ turned in. The game hadn't changed for 6 months and they're complaining that they couldn't turn in the daily for the 80th time.

With a group of 3 pepole we snuck into ironforge and infested nearly an entire wing. It was epic, fun, and most importantly, NEW. The deserted Draenor was another fun place to spread the love.

What was so important to the complainers that they coudn't have done it in the last 6 months? What fantasic encounter were they being kept from that a world-wide invasion just got in the way of things?

Noblegarden was mostly just annoying. Eggs just spawned faster with more people hunting, so it was no big deal for me. It was more the lack of inspiring or fun achievements to do. It just wasn't fun to gather 200+ eggs.

Darraxus said...

I agree. If you dont like the new stuff, dont do it. Go hide in a corner and whinge yourself to sleep.

Gevlon said...

I posted it back then ( how much I'm annoyed with people who cannot handle a bit of a change, a challenge or anything unexpected.

They are weak. I'm happy to see that most commenters (and of course Larísa too) are not weak.

Dw-redux said...

Thinking more about this, there is one think that made me wonder. Those of us who can remember the AQ events will remember that that event was very very similar; Tons of adds everywhere. hell entire zones where unplayable due to lag. And all anyone ever worried about back then was: "did i miss out on stuff?". Two things where different though: 1 the big cities where safe-ish, and 2. no players got turned into the enemy (for very long, there was a mob that mc'ed but that isnt really turned, that is more loss of control)

So what has changed? I guess the fact that you had a safe-zone back then helped. But I think that its much more to do with the fact that we as players and as a community has gotten way more cynical about the game. -While leveling up in northrend, how many people read any questlogs (besides the objetive?). We dont get involved in the game, because its no longer a mystery. EJ, Wowhead, questhelper, gatherer, hell even auctioneer has spoiled us. And if something upsets this balance, of us knowing everything and beeing totally in control, gets upset we go beserk.
Same reason why arena is still such a huge issue. Back in the old pvp days, when you failed it was because you wherent in a premade, or the premade sucked. Now a days, if you have less that 1500 teamrating, there is noone to blame but yourself OR class designers!!
I remember back in vanilla to patiently wait for my class review, that was like what every 6 month they returned to the same class? something like that. Nowadays, if someone feels like locks need buffing, they cant even wait a week.
The game has us gotten too complacant and too settled in our ways.
There is no room for suprices, and blizz are not too happy to give us any either. PTR players get walkthroughed bosses, so that every detail is known before it even starts.
Ill stop ranting now :)

Larísa said...

@Minsneach: Yeah, it’s just a pity that I didn’t put on those glasses when it happened. I think I could have enjoyed it more than I did. Or maybe I’m just glorifying it afterwards?

@Fulguralis: yeah, I guess we all have a little whiner inside of us that wants attention. It’s just that it get rather tedious to listen to our own grumblings as well as others. I want to try to become a bit more openminded, not just looking for errors.

@Dw-redux: but who says that those events always should be easy? I mean you bang your head against a raid boss for a while when you’re in raid progress. And it makes the eventual kill so much more sweet. Isn’t part of the fun of trying to get the event-mount that it actually requires a lot of effort, that it’s HARD?

@Eaten by a Grue: some BG achivements were included in the Children’s week.event. If you complete all the event achievements during a year you get a super-epic-flying mount (and a title I guess, I haven’t checked it up). So it’s just “fluff” and vanity, really nothing “necessary” to succeed in other areas like raiding or pvp-ing. Nevertheless a lot of players feel very motivated to do it. But I don’t think it’s evil. Most of all it gives the players who’re spending a lot of time online something to strive for, something fun to do.

@Spinksville: I’m seriously trying to inspire myself too! It’s SO easy to slip into the never-seen-it-before-must-be-evil conservative mindset.

@Klepsacovic: ahh well done! I don’t think I whined loudly, but I know I bitched to friends in game. Shame on me.

@HP: yeah, I guess it’s just the way most of us work. Still I think it would be good for us to try to not focus so much on negative things. If you think negative thoughts all of the time you just make yourself miserable.

@Fitz: well it wouldn’t increase the interest in BG:s the way they’re supposed to be played… But maybe you could try to find incentives to that otherwise?

@Nightzbane: yeah…. I wish I had been more openminded when it happened. And known more about lore. Then I would have enjoyed it. And I agree it’s sad that Blizzard gave in so easily. Sacrificing art for profit… I guess it makes sense ofc, from a goblin perspective…

@Barrista: yeah I guess it’s in our nature to strive for routine. But seriously, couldn’t we use some break from routine stuff at least when we’re playing a game, getting a break from reality? Sometimes I don’t understand people (including myself).

@Green Armadillo: well, I wonder still. If we had spent half as much of our energy on coping with the event, adapting to it, enjoying it, as we spent on whining, wouldn’t the experience had been different? And yeah I think the length of it matters in the aspect that it’s insane to make such much fuss about something that will end in a few days.

@Sprink: Haha, that’s a special moment to start playing! I can imagine you got a pretty strange first impression of WoW…

@Leah: I’m glad to hear that you disagree! Sometimes I think my posts are sort of bleh since hardly anyone argues against me. I don’t need to be Gevlon, but some kind of spark into the discussions makes it more interesting!

@Khaelie: yeah, the people who complain are loudest… I guess it reflects the mechanisms of news media as well. We always report about bad things that happen because that’s interesting to people. Writing stuff like “all flights were on schedule today too” isn’t likely to catch any attention.

@Delbin: it sounds like fun to me. I never took the chance to embrace the event and try to infect anyone else, enjoying that the PvE server for a few days was a PvP server. I can regret it afterwards.

@Gevlon: I must admit that I’m weak too sometimes. As stated in the post. But at least I’m aware of it and try to improve myself.

@Dw-Redux: I think you’re very much on to something there. A very interesting and thought provoking comment! It's more a post than a comment by the way! Why don't you expand it a little and post it on your blog? Someone else may pick up the ideas as well and post about it. I may do it myself... hmm.... You made me think anyway. Thanks!

Shy said...

Hmm..yes, maybe the tone has to be changed, but I do think the critical view towards the game needs to stay.

No matter what a lot of people think, I'm 100% sure that Blizzard does care a lot about the opinion of the player community, and if we stop giving expression to our opinion, it'll make it a lot harder for them.

So yes, I'm guilty as charged, I too complained, but while I agree with having to change the way we complain, we should still voice the opinion.

Alfonsius said...


I myself loved the scourge invasion, too. Sure it wasn't that easy to turn in quests, do the trading and banking, but you could arrange.
Sure it favoured the griefers, which where happy like hell. On the other hand there were not so many griefers in Darnassus and other remote cities.
Unfortunately we will probably never know how the event was meant to finally end. There were necropoles over every major city, the were undead everywhere, the was disease all over azeroth and outland. I guess they wanted people to be glad to be able to move to Northrend, leaving their besieged capitals behind, to go and fight the scourge at its cradle.
This had been WAR, in the World of Warcraft, it's been living versus undead (ok, and kind-of-good-undead vs undead), war isn't nice, in war it isn't easy (to trade, to turn in quests, to chat). Sure it wasn't, but war ain't fair either.
I think Blizz wanted us players to go and fight the scourge, but some/much/a lot of players whinded so hard that they just ended the event, in a not finished state ... it's really too bad.

As for Childrens Week:
The meta achievement originally requestet to kill 10 players of the opposing faction who had their orphan with them. Sure not nice (remember war isn't nice anyway), but doable in a singe AV in five minutes.
Some people where touched, maybe with good reason, mabye without, so they changed it to the way it was. Again whining was the source of whining.
And finally the purple protodrake is the only super fast mount you don't get from raiding or arena, so if you really desire it, you need to take some disadvantages into account, if you don't desire it you should think about waiving those 10 points, and this mostly really stupid titles.

Cassini said...

Haha - the Scourge invasion event. That thing was great! I LOVED going around killing as many players as possible before they got chance to infect others. I think I only managed to get turned myself once, maybe twice. Being a mage and kiting other players whilst taking away their chance to infect others was ace. It sure did generate me a truck-tonne of whispers from people who were mad at me for not letting them spread the infection around before killing them!


Coming from a pvp server originally, all I can say is - if it's red, it's dead. :)

Heh, fun times indeed. :)

Barrista said...

But seriously, couldn’t we use some break from routine stuff at least when we’re playing a game, getting a break from reality? It's all in the wiring. Some people like routine. Surprises make them nervous.

As for the last 2 holidays, my dislike had nothing to do with a fear of changing routine. It was more that doing the holidays and hunting titles and achievements have become what EVERYONE does. So in some ways, it has become routine and the idea of doing yet another holiday turned me off.

Consolea said...

I think I've just fallen in love with this blog. The topics are interesting and it's really well-written. Great inspiration for a fresh blogger :)

Rhidach said...

Great post! I was a huge fan of the Scourge Invasion because it actually made the normally static world much more dynamic and fluid. It was a lot of fun to have to try to beat back the zombie hordes.

Too bad it wasn't allowed to run its full course.

Wizz said...

I find it interesting on the way people are commenting on the BG achievement for children's week. From reading this blog and replys and forum posts, the whinging and whining seems to be all about "people zerging this or that and not playing properly" to get the achieve.

However if people were honest, were they really thinking about the objectives and how to achieve it? Or were they whinging that they and the rest of the raid were running to the first flag/tower like drones and they were missing out and thats what made them unhappy?

For me I found playing the BGs as intended actually helped me get the achieves. It may not be the usual way to play but works.

So everyone in AV is zerging the closest tower to race to get it, how bout trying to recap a tower or running out front to cap the furthest?

How bout trying to 4 cap in EOTS forcing the other side to cap a tower for the zergers? freeing up the middle for you to get the flag?

How bout recapping bases in AB.

Generally in WSG people grab the flag and half the raid sits in the FR or somewhere waiting for a recap anyway so whats the difference?

As I see it, Blizz probably knew ppl will just try the easy method of zerging for the achieves but they probably assumed that eventually ppl might wake up and realise that hey, actually playing the BG as intended would actually benefit the player in getting them.

I mean IRL, if a problem or task comes up and you find that the straight, obvious, lack of effort way isnt working, do you just give up and cry or do you try and find a solution?

Its actually a bit scary to see how people arrive at their conclusions, I know its a game but in a way it does reflect on how people function and perceive things in life.

Big rant I know and its not taking pot shots at people, but rather addressing the general vibe given out when wow changes slightly. And yes I say Zerg alot...Zerg! :)

Anonymous said...

Hey hey, long time reader, constant commenter here...

I have one problem with these big world events.... they don't last long enough (ok, 2 problems, or happen often enough).

I know this would drive most people crazy, but as I am generally playing one night a week, and that's all raid business, I rarely get to enjoy the sideshow.

That said, I can truly appreciate the torment that people go through when these things occur and it is the last thing of their list of to-dos.

I think Blizzard should have a warning posted for a week before hand... don't log on if you you are going to complain... and -click here- to suspend your account for "1 week".

You loose no money, and don't get in the way of people that want to enjoy the event.

Now that Zombie invasion...

What's the story there... they appear for a week or two, then all run back to Northrend?

Isn't it about time Arthas fought back and sent another invasion?

Let's get people motivated again to storm Northrend.. surely he's outraged about the Argent Tournament at his doorstep... how about sending some Zombies back to Stormwind.

Maybe Blizzard could add in some "wintergrasp" like quests, where there is a reward for raiding up to fight back the horde and the zombies... then people wouldn't complain so much.

Belghast said...

Gratz Larisa on getting "slashdotted" :)

It's a fun ride!

eponymous said...

Not everybody was bitching about the Zombie Invasion of Awesome--some of us had a lot of fun with it. That was a very well-planned world event.

To try to fanwank the BG achievement for Children's Week, though, is going way too far. I independently came up with the same idea that you subscribed to--the objective should have been to WIN. This wasn't Blizzard coming up with some new and brilliant idea to mix up the Battlegrounds--this was Blizzard picking a random aspect of each one, probably to make it "easier" for people who don't normally PvP, without a thought in their heads into how this would play out on the live realms.

People who knee-jerk hate everything that changes? Too conservative. But not everybody does that, and sometimes negative reactions to changes are entirely justified.

My main is:
Sleutel, 80 Protection Warrior
Appareo Fatum, Borean Tundra

Nellisynthia said...

First a fantastic post ...

Second, I thought I'd relate something else that happened on Children's Week. I am not a PvP'er ... it has never been able to hold my attention for more than a few days. But that's fine, I've also never begrudged those that enjoy that aspect of the game - it's great that the game can support such diverse playstyles.

But I was a mote worried about getting the Children's Week achievment and completing School of Hard Knocks. Until I logged in and as I prepped for my dailies I get an invite from a fellow guildmate:

"Want to group for battlegrounds and the Orphan achievements?"

Simply put, the PvP'ers in our guild got together and took it upon themselves to help folks who wanted to get that achievement.

And they stuck around until they did.

For us PvP noobs it was a wonderful surprise - they helped, they didn't do it for, us so I learned more about PvP doing so - and that good feeling was worth more than the title or the eventual nifty drake.

Spencer said...

I had soo much fun during the Scourge invasion I caught the boat to Theramore to do some errands and there was a mage there as a ghoul killing the guards so I joined her. We had a blast, the only thing we couldnt kill was Jaina Proudmoore. If one of us turned back into a human wed turn em back into a ghoul. Was great having a ghoul horde running amuck.
We didnt go out of our way to kill players, only if they got in the way of our current NPC targets.
I knew this event was something special so I took tons of screenshots.

DarkWalker said...

I loved the scourge invasion, except the zombie thing. Specifically:

- First and foremost, the fact that it was NOT optional. About every other event has allways been optional, but this specific part of the scourge invasion was forced unto players. Next time they do something like this it would be nice to have an option to cancel my account until the event is done and get a refund for the unplayed time.

- Being turned into a zombie. I loathed the very concept of spreading chaos on your own faction. By the fifth or sixth time I was so angry with it I almost broke my keyboard in frustration. It was worse as a paladin, specially on the last days, since I had precious few ways of handling zombies without being infected and each time I was infected I would have to spend over half my mana to try to cleanse it, not always succesfully.

- Bugs. Zombies in Shat that could not be attacked, being locked out of the game whenever I logged out as a zombie, the zombie habilities bar not appearing when I turned into a zombie, etc. I've spent over half the weekend logged as an alt while trying to get a GM to answer my tickets.

- Overlap with the Hallow's End event. It was already hard to find enough players to have a go at quenching the flames after the first days, and some idiot players though it funny to attack those doing the event. That day, if I were to find someone that had been doing this, I would probabily punch him in the face. Perhaps even twice for good measure.

- Player griefing. They were camping the flight masters, inns, banks, auction houses, staking the starting zones, killing every NPC in Shatt, etc. I mostly didn't care if non essential NPCs got turned, but being barred from using the banks and having to always leave the main cities by mount was a chore, pure and simple.

With some extra care the zombie thing could have been great:

- Either reducing zombie levels in the lowbie zones or making the amount of life recovered dependent on the relative level of zombie and victim, thus making it impossible for the constantly decaying zombies to last on the lower level zones.

- Some way, available to all levels and maybe reversible, of making yourself immune to the infection.

- Making essential NPCs either immune or faster spawning.

- Making honorless targets immune to the infection.

- Making the cities react to the plague spreading. Perhaps making the NPCs, including guards and priests, fall back to a baricaded place where essential NPCs could stay safe while zombies roamed the streets. The way it went, with every NPC doing business as usual until turning into a zombie, really broke the feeling of severity the event might have had.

- Better quality control.

That event is what made me cancel my second account, since that seems to be the most effective way to make my displeasure felt. And I still regret I didn't call them to request a refund for the days of the zombie invasion; it seems some people were able to get a refund, and it would have been an even stronger way to show how much I disliked the event.

As for the children's week event, my complaint is that they've made an achievement that, as long as the rest of your team was playing properly, was way easier to complete if you were willing to completely disregard teamplay. It might have been coincidence, but as soon as I started completely disregarding the battleground teamplay I went from a 75% winning streak to losing each and every game, but at the same time completed in two hours the achievement that had completely eluded me for 4-5 hours before. Battleground achievements should reward good play, not making an ass of yourself.

So, while I do try to look events in a positive way, I see those two (zombie thing and the school of hard knocks) are prime examples of what Blizzard should not do.

Hagen said...

This event was awful. Forcing open world PvP w/no recourse but to logoff is awful. People say "Well why were you still doing dailies OMG loser!", but I had just come back to the game the week before. I took 7 months off after my 2nd daughter was born. I hadn't done ANY of the SSO stuff b/c it wasn't in the game yet when I cxld my account.

My Priest was running along in QD teh first day of the invasion and someone from one of the guilds in my guild alliance turned me into a zombie. I was like "WTF!?". As it got worse it made it harder for me to get anything accomplished. I had a Rogue I was trying to finish getting to 70 and a Warrior I was trying really hard to get geared up.

It wasn't something I considered fun and I won't cry if Blizzard never does as poorly planned an event again. The event ended after 5 days (which at the time speculation was that it would last the entire month until the xpac was released which was not a fun idea for most of my friends and myself.

The event ended after just 5 days and all traces of everything vanished instantly. Some sort of change, maybe if the NPCs in Stormwind would have spent the next month or so talking about slain loved ones or whatever, would have been pretty cool. I would have still disliked that 5 days of the invasion, but showing the scars left behind for awhile would have been nice.

A Zombie Apocalypse style invasion to institute real change on a couple of continents we had played on for 4 years would have been far more interesting than what we actually had, which was just a bunch of griefing and rampant asshattery.

~Psychotic~ said...

I'll just copy and paste what I posted on the WoW Insider article of this (

I personally had no problems with the Children's Week thing. I can avoid Battlegrounds, that's no problem. But the Scourge Invasion was far too much.

Not fun at all. I think peoples rage at that event was highly justified. For the most part, I agree with her. Just not for the Scourge Invasion.

"We tossed the gift away, like spoiled kids."

Anyone who loves to kill or grief would've loved the event and I did for some time, so I had the guilty pleasure of it too. But it lost it's favor really quickly for me and became so fucking boring I stopped doing it.

However, everyone else loved it and I was forced to conform to everyone else's play style because I couldn't do anything else other than conform to people's play style (if I tried, I'd just die from some plagued bastard, if I didn't, I couldn't do anything anyway with everyone dead).

At least with Children's Week it was OPTIONAL. I did not HAVE to be apart of it. I did NOT have to go into Battlegrounds to do the achievements. I don't really like achievements, personally. I HAD A CHOICE TO DO IT. Scourge Invasion? That choice got shot, stabbed, burnt and raped. There was no choice.

Anonymous said...

The zombie event was a total cluster flock. Blizzard not only made this stupid event mandatory, they gave power to the people I hate most in this game = the little punks that have nothing better to do other than to make other players lives miserable in a sanctioned grief fest. These events should always be optional and not force people on a PvE server to participate in this idiocy. I hope the idiot that came up with this event got fired and for all of you Blizzard zombie event fanboys - FU