It’s Just A Game….Right

Let me preface this post by saying this is directed at no one in particular.

I recently read a post by Jacemora titled “Tired of the Term “Casual”” .  This along with multiple other forum posts has given me reasons to rant from time to time.  So this is my casual-hardcore rant post for the month.

Why are people who take their time seriously and love the challege that instances such as pre-BC Naxxaramas and Sunwell called elitists and everything else under the sun?  I included myself in this group because I take the three nights a week I raid serious and attempt to make the best out of each one of them.   I would love to see a return by Blizzard to the difficulty of Sunwell, but know that it would take a near miracle to see a dungeon as good as Sunwell this expansion.  The cry of “it’s just a game that all should be able to see” has ruined this expansion.  It would be nice to know how you aren’t able to see the content when there is no attunement to open the door.  None of the bosses require you to douse flames or don resistance gear.  The current content is incredibly easy to access.

Wotlk content is also incredibly easy to do.  Flame Levithan has been done with four people in twenty five man already!  No bosses until Yogg-Saron require much more than a tank and spank mentality with adds added.   Oh, but there’s hard modes!  Let me quote a former raider of my guild:

IMO, the introduction of hard modes and easy modes killed raiding. There really isn’t a raiding encounter (with the one exception of algalon, who really only looks hard because you can only attempt him for one hour every week) that is unique from its easy mode. Every encounter is either “this boss does more damage and had more health” or “this boss gains one more ability” or (the absolute worst) “you have to kill this boss in a really short amount of time, so just stack DPS out the ass.”  The introduction of Blizzard’s philosophy of wanting everyone to see raid content, whether or not they’ve put any effort into raiding or know how to play their class at all has made raiding much more boring and has brought so many unneeded nerfs to raid encounters that were previously very well tuned.

This “it’s just a game” mentality  has ruined raiding and made it a glorified loot pinata.  This may be just a game, but I personally play games for a challenge.  It’s like running a marathon or competing in any competition.  I put time and effort into it because I have fun and enjoy the reward that comes with winning.  I look at WoW as if it started out with great rewards and amazing challenges, but slowly over time it has deteriorated.  Now we are left with everyone getting cheapened first place trophies.  What happened to the desire for competition and fun?  Yes, fun is still found in game, but the competition is gone.  Will it ever return?  It looks doubtful from blue posts since Wotlk was released, but I won’t give up hope.  Maybe Icecrown will hold a raider’s treasure instead of a simple loot pinata like Ulduar or Naxxaramas.

Do I hate the “casual” majority in WoW? Of course not!  Casuals are some of the nicest people in game.  I have a hard time calling myself hardcore because I don’t raid every night of the week(3 nights actually), but my point of view on the casual-hardcore debate is much more elitist.  I believe Ulduar should’ve been kept the way it was pre-nerfs.  It’s already a joke of a raiding instance and the nerfs just made it even more laughable.   But getting back to the casuals.  Most of you aren’t casual.  I hate to burst your bubble, but many of you play as much as the hardcore raiders.  I know because I have talked to hundreds of players who consider themselves casual, but you will find them on as much if not more than the so called hardcore players.  I realize some people don’t have the time that others have, but I would venture to say the majority of WoW players could have raided all the TBC content.  Why didn’t most of them make it?

  • – Didn’t want to commit to the raid times
  • – Bad players- Yes, there are a lot of bad players in WoW.  Casual =/= Bad

Those are the two reasons most WoW players did not see Sunwell Plateau.  The first one is obviously the most common, but the second one is a bit more common than you would like to think.  So in Wotlk Blizzard decided to do two things to combat these two kinds of people.   Make content clearable in one to two nights and make each fight bring the player not the class.  Neither is a terrible change, but the consequence of these changes was that boss fights had to be dumbed down.  If you want content to be clearable in one to two nights it can’t take weeks to learn.  If you want to allow even the bad players in you can’t make the fights so hard.  This led to Blizzard hearing complaints from the “elitists” that it was too easy.  So what does Blizzard do, but try and toss a bone by adding hard modes.  You can read above what I think of those.

Is being a casual in itself bad? No.  The problem comes with those that believe they deserve everything because they pay $15 a month.  To me that sounds like Terrell Owens in the NFL or a host of other sports atheletes.  I believe raiding should be a reward for working hard to obtain gear through heroics, professions, rep grinds, etc.  It should take time to get ready to do a new raid instance.  I recently did Flame Levithan- 10 man on my death knight who is wearing quest blues and greens!  I think he shouldn’t even be able to set foot into Ulduar until he’s done Naxxaramas at least once, but obviously Blizzard thinks differently.

Okay so I’ll end my rant there.  You can take it for what it is and try and take it apart bit by bit, but we all have our opinions on this subject.  Feel free to say what you like on the issue and I wish you the best of luck with Ulduar.


P.S. If you’d like to see another PoV on this topic read Counter-Rant: Not all hardcore raiders are a$$holes. you know. from Keeva of Tree Bark Jacket!


~ by aleanathem on June 17, 2009.

6 Responses to “It’s Just A Game….Right”

  1. i totally agree! bring back the old days of raids! i remember working my poor bear ass off just to be able to get into a BT raid spot. but sadly any tom dick and harry can do any raid these day no matter what their gear is. it’s sad really >.< but non-the-less we still play wow and still enjoy the raids despite the "hardness" that's gone. i remember when one used to spend 2 night on ONE boss in BT or sunwell. dispite the wiping, it was fun to learn. these day it's fight the boss once or twice and it's easy mode. where is the challenge in that?
    i guess blizzard are trying to find a balance for the hardcore raiders (hardmodes) and the casuals to be able to see the content. as you said, a casual still pays $15 to play but yet he doesn't get to see ulduar or naxx but blizzard made it easier for them to access the content. so to me it see blizzard are thinking more about the casual players than the hardcore players? i better stop…i could go on and on and on about this too…maybe i should blog about the state too 🙂

  2. In this new age of WoTLK, I feel casuals are people who pug raids, who pug heroics, who pug dungeons… I consider any person who took the time to app a raiding guild and adhere to a schedule of any sort – hardcore. There is most definitely a degree or level of hardcore – maybe RC would be a subset: hardcorecasual and ensidia would just be pure hardcore.

    Regardless, WoW is easy/a grind, baddies exist and are in raids, ruining the fun.

  3. […] I just read another post on Current raid content difficulty from AL over on his blog “Of Claws and […]

  4. If you really want hard raiding don’t ever try the normal fights before you do the hardmodes and don’t read the strats. There ya go.

    It’s not about raiding being hard for most “hardcore” players (note this isn’t aimed at you personally) it’s about being “first” and above the “casuals”

    That said I think a number of the nerfs that went in to Ulduar went in too soon.

    I also wonder if maybe more than one real raid zone had beein in at launch would the nerfs have been held off longer. I think Blizzard is trying to get in as many people in to Ulduar as possible before the next patch with a raid in it so they feel pressured to nerf Uld.

    • Even going without strats the fights are still relatively simple. I mean look at XT. You start beating on the boss and soon his heart come out. Oh crap adds! It’s a very easy fight to understand. Most of the fights are this way. Hard raiding would’ve been Blizzard actually thinking more in-depth about each fight than they did. Most of the hard modes aren’t any thing new either.
      It’s not really the “casuals” complaining about it being too hard. It’s mainly the bad players complaining. And the nerfs to Ulduar were pointless. Most of the players that will cry about bosses being too hard haven’t even hit Yogg yet.

  5. I had this long comment, but then accidentally closed the browser and lost it.

    ‘Tired of the term casual’ tries to give a different point of view, but I think it might be the exception rather than the rule.

    To summarize what I said was I miss the days when there was such a thing as “crowd control” and even a requirement to enter the dungeon. It seems to weed out the chaff from the wheat.

    The other thing was that I find a strong correlation between those ‘hardcore’ elitist people and their gear/skill level. There is no denying they have the gear and the skills to obtain said gear, but their attitudes are lean strongly towards a-holi-ness.
    There is that saying, ‘birds of a feather flock together’
    I can understand how this came to be, you can’t have a bunch of happy-go-lucky people who don’t know what they are doing expect to successfully clear the instance within a reasonable amount of time, however well meaning they are. It is about attitude and it comes with the territory.

    So I’m torn between the two. I like the fast military style no-nonsense pace that comes with an ‘elite’ group while detesting the slower than turtle pace of the ‘casual’ group who take fifteen minutes after a wipe to regroup just to wipe again. What I don’t like is the way the elite group condescendingly treats other people. At the same time the carebear method of the casuals can be sickening.

    There’s gotta be a middle ground.

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