Category Archives: meta-wow

I think it might be about time to cruise control through WoW for a while

Well, Warlords of Draenor certainly kept my attention longer than any expansion has since Wrath of the Lich King, but because I’m not really raiding (due to my work schedule) and because I’ve almost gotten everything I want out of Tanaan dailies, it might be about time to scale back on this game for a bit.

I won’t be quitting – not yet, at least.  I mean, I have WoW tokens lasting at least through the next three months.  But I don’t really see myself doing anything particularly new and exciting in the near future.  That may change, of course.  But for now, I’m content with laying low until Legion comes out.

Meanwhile, there are other video games to play!  I’m considering looking into FFXIV.  Or I can just jump right back into my Steam backlog.  Since I’ve still got, you know, like 300 more games to go.

How My Approach to My WoW Sub Has Changed Over the Years

I remember, many years ago, thinking that if I quit WoW it would be a big deal.  It would be hanging up the hat.  It would be turning around and leaving without looking back. I figured that when I quit, it would be like Forrest Gump.  One day I’d think “I’ve played for three years, two months, fourteen days and sixteen hours” and then I’d stop, turn to my blog readers, and say “I’m pretty tired of playing.  I think I’ll do something else now.”  And that would be it.

forest-gump1To an extent, that’s kind of what happened.  One day back in late Wrath I woke up, realized I was kind of tired of running along the raid treadmill, and I hung up my hat.

What I didn’t anticipate, however, is that I would be back running again.  But this time, only bits at a time.

When I first quit WoW, I had been continuously subbed for about, oh, two and a half years, I think.  Since then I have occasionally returned to WoW, but it’s never been with a subscription.  For a while it was with game cards, because that way I could play for a few months and then quit for a year (or two).  Now that WoW Tokens are a thing, I’m using those instead.  My days of a long-lasting subscription are, I think, over.  As are my days of focusing on one game for years on end.  Instead, I play WoW here and there, sometimes for a few months, but rarely exclusively, and usually with frequent breaks.  According to Blizzard, most people play that way now, which is supposedly one of the reasons for the great subscription number decline of ’15.

So now here I am, just paying month by month, and pretty happy about it.

AmtzGq9What about you guys?  Do you still go the subscription route?

Apparently Blizzard Trademarked a New Thing. Let’s Take a Look.

DISCLAIMER: This could all be fake.  But it looks real to me so for now let’s roll with it.  I can’t think of anything else to write about today anyway.

So yeah, apparently Blizzard trademarked a new thing.  It’s called “Council of Glades” and it’s being trademarked as computer game software, i.e. not a book.

The million dollar question relevant to WoW players is, of course, is it Warcraft related?  My money is on yes, and here’s why:

  • The Council of Tirisfal is a thing in lore.  Tirisfal Glades is a thing in game.  Thus, Council of Glades.
  • StarCraft 2 is already getting its (final, I think) expansion.
  • It doesn’t really sound Diablo related to me.  Councils exist, but I’m not so sure about glades.   But who knows, I guess?

This brings us to four possibilities: A WoW expansion, a Hearthstone expansion, something involving HotS, or something entirely new.  Hearthstone just got a new thing and I don’t really see Blizzard doing anything completely new with the Warcraft universe, since Hearthstone is still pretty young.  It might be HotS, but that’s not nearly as exciting as wild speculation.  (Although I would sell a kidney for a Medivh hero.)

So, let’s see here:

  • Medivh was (is?) in the Council of Tirisfal
  • Medivh is connected to Khadgar
  • We were just reintroduced to Khadgar
  • It’s about time for a WoW expac announcement
  • “Council of Glades”

…….

20110218040846KHADGAR/MEDIVH THEMED EXPANSION WITH KARAZHAN INVOLVED.

MAKE IT HAPPEN, BLIZZARD!

Three Raids, One Expac

In a move reminiscent of that “No flying” announcement we got a while back, Blizzard decided to drop a bombshell via a fan interview again.  Today’s bombshell?  6.2 is it! No more raids after this!

mal-speechless

What are my thoughts on this?  Well, I’m thinking about a couple of things.  Firstly I’m thinking don’t be surprised if Blizz drops a sudden mini-raid like they did at the end of Wrath, because Blizzard.txt.  Secondly, I’m thinking, um… Blizzard… you guys do know you haven’t announced a new expansion yet, right?  Which I’m assuming means it’s not anywhere near alpha or beta yet, right?  So uh… what is everyone going to do until the next expac?

I mean, for me personally, I think I have enough to keep me occupied for a little while.  This is because I was unsubbed for a long time and I like poking around at old content and leveling alts, so I have a lot to catch up on.  So I’m not terribly disappointed myself.  Like, I think I’ll be fine.

But, seriously.  Blizzard.  Maybe throw us a bone here and announce the new expac so we at least know it’s coming?  Eh?

Why Taking a Break Was Good For Me

As all three (or maybe four?) of you long-time readers left know, I quit playing WoW for several years and thus left this blog to unceremoniously sit for just as long.  Sometimes I wonder if I should have kept playing so I could keep blogging, because I do so love blogging.  But, ultimately, I’m glad I took that break.

See, recently I’ve been seeing a lot of people both on Twitter and in blogs talking about how they’re growing tired of, or bored with, the game.  And then here I am, over here in my corner, having a blast and in general being content with my life in Azeroth.

And you know, I think it’s because I walked away for so long.  I walked away and now that I’m back I’m looking at it with fresh eyes.

It’s not the same as it was back when I first started, no.  It will never be quite that magical again.  But sometimes I think it can get pretty close.  (In fairness, I might be biased, because I am very easy to please.)

Even Althalor is easy to please.  In this case he's LUDICROUSLY HAPPY because there's a squid on his head.
Even Althalor is easy to please. In this case he’s LUDICROUSLY HAPPY because there’s a squid on his head.

So yes, I’m glad I took a break.  I’ve sort of… recalibrated my own thought process on the whole thing, if you will.  It used to be that I thought quitting WoW was sort of a huge deal, but now I treat it like any other game.  I can drop it for months – or years – at a time, and then I can come back again later whenever I want.  And you know what?  That’s okay.  Especially now that I can pay for a subscription just by logging in and poking my garrison for twenty minutes a day.

Breaks.  They work for me!

A Super Cool Look at Early World of Warcraft Development

I’ve always been fascinated by things like concept art and early screenshots of my favorite games.  These provide a really neat and often rare glimpse under the hood – a look at the humble beginnings of worlds I’d later spend so much time in.

A couple of us on Twitter got a treat earlier when a Blizzard employee decided to share some fantastic behind-the-scene screenshots with us, and they absolutely 100% made my day.

These are just three selections I picked that I especially liked, but I highly recommend heading over to the Storify I made and checking out all of these. A huge thank you to Dave Wilson for sharing this stuff with us!

[sings] A WHOLE NEW WORLD

Despite – or perhaps because of – my love for video games, I tend to lag behind a bit in the department of technological trends.  I did not get my first smartphone until about two years ago, and I was not using a widescreen monitor until exactly… yesterday.

That’s right.  You know how back in the day everyone’s monitor was a square?  That was mine.  Until about 16 hours ago.

Needless to say my crowded world…

WoWScrnShot_042115_141659

suddenly got a whole lot bigger…

WoWScrnShot_060415_184858It’s actually kind of difficult to enjoy right now, because for whatever reason, my new monitor is hurting my eyes.  I’ve never been one of those people who gets eye strain from staring at monitors (other than from the 3D feature on the Nintendo 3DS), so I’m at a loss as to why this one is giving me fits.  Nothing looks fuzzy or anything; everything is crisp and sharp.  So who knows.  For now I’ve pushed the monitor back (so there’s at least 24 inches between it and me) and also turned down the brightness.  We’ll see if it helps!

There are a couple of things that Blizzard always gets right

One of those things is cinematics.  Because oh, Blizzard has got a flair for those.  Who among us who played Warcraft III doesn’t get chills at Arthas’ betrayal at the end of the Human Campaign?

Next up is music.  There have been too many talented composers at Blizzard over the years to name them all here alongside their contributions, but I feel that Blizzard games have some of the best soundtracks you will find in any video game.  From the infamous Terran theme in Starcraft to the bouncy and jingoistic Warcraft II music (heard today in pet battles), to all the multitude of melodies that you’ll here in World of Warcraft today – I just love it all.

My favorite music, of course, resides in my favorite raid:

Mmm. Just listening to it brings me back.

Tell me of your favorite Blizzard tunes!

An Interesting Thing About the World of Warcraft Experience

I’ve been thinking recently about how with most video games it doesn’t really matter when you first play it – the experience is similar for everyone.  So, for example, you can play Deus Ex or Morrowind today and talk to people who played Deus Ex or Morrowind when they first came out over a decade ago and your experiences with those games will probably have been fairly similar.  You can talk about the story, areas of the game, obnoxious bosses and so on and have a lot of common ground.

But World of Warcraft is always changing, oftentimes a lot, and so you don’t always get that ability.  Imagine someone who played the game ten years ago talking to someone who is just starting out today.  They would have some common ground, of course – but how much?

People who started raiding in Cataclysm or Mists of Pandaria have a largely different view on the game than I would – I, as someone who did her raiding in Burning Crusade and Wrath of the Lich King.  The bosses were different, the mechanics were different, and the memories were different.

look at this adorable Karazhan gear
look at this adorable Karazhan gear

Other than WoW I’ve never really been a huge MMO player so this is all a different and new concept to me.  Other games are constants, but WoW is more like life, where new generations are constantly rising to play an experience that is similar to – but certainly not the same as – what the older generations experienced.

Weird, huh?

Stuck On You

The last time I had a subscription for an entire WoW expansion, with no breaks, was for The Burning Crusade.

I took one or two short breaks towards the end of WotLK, I took a very long break during Cataclysm, and I only played the first couple of months of MoP.  That last break there was the longest, clocking in at two years and some change.  In fact, I’d actually convinced myself that I wouldn’t be coming back.  The game was different now and I’d moved on to plenty of other games – heck, there were plenty of other games I was pouring hundreds of hours into, just as I had with WoW.  My gaming life was good.  WoW was a memory.

And yet, like a loyal dog, WoW waited for me to come back.  And like a sap, I did.

The Warcraft section of my gaming display shelf.  Did I mention I have a gaming display shelf?  I do.  It's big.
The Warcraft section of my gaming display shelf. Did I mention I have a gaming display shelf? I do. It’s big.  Not pictured: Warcraft I, because I have that too.

I think I’m starting to accept now that I’ll never quite go away entirely.  And you know what?  That’s fine.  I’ve reached a comfortable equilibrium knowing that I can play for as long as I want and then drop it for as long as I want, and it’ll still be there.  Different, perhaps – probably a lot different, in fact – but there.

So brace yourselves, Internet – cause this dumb blog is probably never quite going away. >:D