The Good Points of Warlords of Draenor

How many months has it been since I first saw the sort of a let-down teaser trailer to the announcement of our latest expansion? For whatever reason I was not as excited for WoD, Draenor, as I had been for Pandaria.

*Warning: Pandaria Nostalgia incoming in 3, 2, 1..*

I signed up for MoP Beta and the moment I got my confirmation I hopped in was amazed at this new world for us to explore. I rode straight across the new continent and my best memory would have been impeding upon the farms of the Valley of the Four Winds and being assaulted by giant mushan.

So you say: “But Draenor is a new world!”. Yes, but it is within a different time-line, it isn’t “our” Draenor. Pandaria was a true “expansion” of the known world which our actions had an impact on.

When I saw the Draenor trailer with Garrosh’s annoying face I thought “Oh god, I hope we get to kill him this time”.

6.2 gives me hope that there will be some sort of demonic influence? My warlock would be completely thrilled. Except all I read was related to some stupid shipyard aka more missions.

Anyways, back to topic. There’s been a lot of…disdain and bitter after-taste upon the tongues of many since the release of WoD. I haven’t really heard of anyone ENJOYING any of the new “content”, or raving about what floats their boat.

So I shall attempt to. This won’t be pretty. And the list probably won’t be long. And the good points won’t be definitive.

1. Pet Menagerie: This was actually sort of a letdown. I thought we would be able to breed pets as a side-thing that we do. Then again, I thought ALL the activities of the garrison would have been a “side” thing to do rather than the ONLY thing there is to do.

I AM a fan of how a select group of our favorite wow-Pokémon will wander through our garrison and follow us around. Bonus to immersion points.

2. Removal of flying. Sort of. I am a proponent of exploration but I believe being land-locked is just a conspiracy of “forcing” players to socialize to camp and track those annoying rare mount spawns that pop up throughout the world. Being ground-bound enables players to actually look around and find paths and actual routes up to locations. Good and bad.

3. Our own mine and herb garden. Actually don’t even get me started on the Pandarian farm. I remember saying back in MoP, how cool would it be if our farm would be just a slightly more immersive mobile type game WITHIN the current game. It doesn’t have to be super in depth, just like how we had a plants vs zombies mini-game in EK.

Garrisons SHOULD have been like that. A small mini-version of the greater game, not the ENTIRE game itself. One could argue that it is, but if you look at it, our followers do MORE exploration, dungeons, raiding, treasure hunting, you name it than we do!

And don’t even get me started on how WRECKED professions are. Who even needs gathering professions anymore unless you’re leveling from 0-600? Once you hit the dreaded WoD gating it’s just boring and feels like you have no control of your own progress.

I am still keeping my gathering professions in hopes of WoD ending very soon.

Ok Truny, stop. Keep things positive!

No! Go away!

It is HANDY to have our own gardens and mines but you’ve pretty much killed of a core component of the game no? I personally enjoy flying around herbing in my off-time (Taurens FTW). Wouldn’t it be cool if we could find rare or interesting reagents or materials through gathering and augment our mines and gardens with the cool stuff that we found?

Mines and gardens should complement the profession that it supports, not outright replace it and make it more or less redundant?

Ok I’ll stop with that here.

4. They tried to implement housing?

Ok this all depends on the intent of garrisons. If they had originally designed it as a cool place for us to reside on this strange land that we could customize and share, then yes. At least they tried.

Most likely the decision was: let’s make it a horrible version of a phone game, where players will want to log in x hours later.

See, even THAT I would have accepted if it wasn’t such a large component of how we acquire pretty much anything in game. Treasure hunting missions = all the gold we obtained via dailies before.

Sure, MoP had a bit TOO many dailies but it got us out and about and god forbid, sometimes we’d just skip some factions.

Should I save this for another post? See, MoP dailies sometimes took so long that it would have consumed our entire evening to be able to run heroics for valor, or do fun extraneous things. I do see why the lack of dailies is tolerable but…there’s gotta be a fine balance right? Yes, let’s talk about this next time.

5. Ok I am sure I can think of 5 things.

Let’s see, did gameplay get more fun? Not really, hunters are still fun to play, warlocks are a bit gimped but I make do. Healing is just healing (though I am a resto druid luckily).

The raid encounters are fun I guess? But seriously THREE tiers (not including fake LFR and I almost want to exclude the “fake” normal aka old flex. Yeah no can’t count those unfortunately.

Ummm, the new dungeons are actually very detailed and fun, but with the lack of VP or an interesting “daily incentive” to run a heroic other than the inn quests, there’s very little reason to revisit them. See, there isn’t even sense of progression for the things we don’t need to do.

Hear me out. Back in Cataclysm and MoP we would run the same dungeons over and over because of VP. VP was a viable incentive, but there’s also a bit of psychological and actual progression going on in that the first time you stepped foot in Grim Batol vs the last time you stepped foot, you were face-rolling and half-solo’ing the bosses like no tomorrow.

There we see a sense of progression for something we don’t really care for but can easily be seen throughout the entire expansion just because we’re running it over and over. Also seeing the community evolve (some people don’t and still sucked).

So no, dungeons don’t make the cut unfortunately.

When I think of #5 I’ll get back to you.

Truny the Rantful

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