Today is normally a day that I’m climbing the walls waiting for Blizzard to finish maintenance, and let me jump into the new pre-expansion patch. But for the first time in twelve years, I’m not. I’ve mentioned before, back in March that WoW has left me feeling “Oh I’m max level, now what?” bored in long intervals. Usually I’d return with the next big content patch. But, now having something to compare, I realize what WoW has been trying to tell me for the last several years. This game isn’t meant for you.
Now, I don’t mean that as a dig at Blizzard, or other players. Rather, it is just what it is for me. I don’t have the hours upon hours required for gearing up, farming, and raiding. I did once, but it required sacrificing quality couch time with the Mister, and I’m not doing that anymore. I haven’t for years. But if you don’t raid, or PvP, there’s a hard limit on what you can do to keep active and happy. Pet collecting and Transmog used to fill that void, but with the pets there was no challenge left. Once you have 500+ there ceases to be a real point unless you enjoy the pet battles, which I never really did. And I had all the transmogs I cared about.
Back to raiding, it began to feel like Blizzard just kept piling on mechanics to each boss. Going beyond challenge and gear check, and into territory that required more precision gameplay and memory than I have. Due to things beyond my control, my memory for mechanics and such is swiss cheese. On top of that, raid night requires a minimum of two to three hours and two nights/week to make progress, so there’s that time factor. Group finder helped that, by letting me run one wing at a time during my daytime playing hours, however it also limited how much gearing up you could do that way. You were restricted from using group finder to do certain levels of raiding and dungeons, and the gear you could get from the content you could do was restricted as well. Mounts, or appearances that only came from levels above the group finder levels began the loudest shouting of “This game isn’t for you” to my ears, and that’s what finally got through.
When I tried FFXIV and realized their group finder allowed me to go into ANY level of dungeon or raid, and allowed access to everything that came from them I was floored. Gear, pets, mounts, nothing was out of my reach anymore. The content itself is challenging and mechanics are still a thing, but they do a far better job of marking them out to avoid them, which saves me countless headaches with my memory the way it is. And the best part, even in 24 man raids, you can complete the entire raid in maybe an hour. Which I can do during my prime playtime, in the afternoons.
Now let’s bring Story into it. Storytelling isn’t WoW’s priority, I know that. And that’s fine. But what always bothered me about the story they did tell, was that I seldom got to see how it ended, because it ended in raids. I got further in Legion than I had in expansions past, and I could again in Battle for Azeroth. But what’s the story? Horde vs Alliance. Again. Repackaged, and with a fresh coat of red and blue paint, and bonus races and a new generation of faction leaders. No thanks.
I hope all my friends still playing have a blast, and that the loot Gods smile upon them. And I’m not going to rule out popping back into Azeroth at some point, because I know me, I’ll likely give it another shot eventually. But for now, it’s so long.
And Thanks for all the fish!