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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Will we make it to the next WoW Expansion?

Cataclysm was depending on who you ask a complete success or an utter failure of magnificent levels. I personally am about half way between the two camps. On the one hand I found certain aspects of the game enjoyable, but I also can’t stand some of the fundamental game changes that have been made. My question is with Blizzards time frame of one and a half to two year cycle of coming out with a new expansion, how many of us WoWers will actually make it to this release? I am almost amazed myself to state that I highly doubt I will be one of them.
          World of Warcraft has meant a lot to me over the past six years. That statement alone seems odd when you consider it’s a game I am referring to. However when you take into account all the good memories, good people and entertainment I have met or experienced in that time, one can see how this game has retained a special place with me.
            I was there in the games infancy and marveled at the openness of the world. I was there to ding level 60 for the first time, then 70, 80 and 85. I have enjoyed this game for a very long time and hold no regrets, but I am almost 100 percent certain I will not make it to see 90.

The End of an ERA
            As much fun as I have had in playing this game, I have come to the conclusion that this game is not the game I started playing years ago. In some ways it has improved, but in others sadly it has become less enjoyable. As I look at the next two years of cataclysm content ahead of me, I am already wondering when my final log in will take place.
            Now I have had breaks in the past, one such break was for several months even, but I believe the next time I cancel my subscription it will be final. I cannot imagine even coming back for a new expansion because two years from now I will probably be over Azeroth and the world it has become. I will more than likely be on some distant planet with a deadly light stick or a fold out blaster instead of a sword and shield (Fingers crossed that this game wont suck) and will not have the time or energy to make a return trip to the lands of Stormwind, Ironforge and Orgrimmar.
Fundamental Changes and Diminishing Returns
            Blizzard in an attempt to improve and move their game into a more mainstream appeal, has instituted some changes to the games overall playability and design concept. These changes, including smaller talent trees, Linear Questing, and changes to the way we group, have altered this game in ways that have removed it from a game of mysterious lands to one of quick journeys and rapid ascension.
            I dinged 85 rather early in Cataclysm on my main toon and still was far behind others in the race. I had also completed every quest available close to the same time. I don’t believe that raiding, PVP and if I choose to do so, a new character is going to hold my interest until the next expansion is released. Replaying content in Dungeons and raids time and time again to obtain better gear no longer holds the same appeal to me and seems more tedious than anything else. PVP although still an enjoyable excursion, is also losing some of its luster for me as basically the newest battlegrounds to be released are reimaged clones of Warsong Gulch and Arathai Basin. Every Expansion is able to hold my interest in this game less and less with each release date.
             The purpose of this post is not to cry foul for the changes that my beloved game has undergone or to shout out its ultimate demise, but to ask myself and you the quintessential question of whether or not this will be your last run or do you plan to be here for the next installment? For me I almost hate to admit that I believe my time is coming to an end. I have so enjoyed my time in this game, but like all things good its day in the spotlight must diminish. I still log onto this game regularly, but the times in between are growing in duration every day. I am only left to ponder when the final curtain on this great game will close for good for me.  

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