He couldve tuned in, tuned in
But he tuned out
A bad time, nothing could save him
Alone in a corridor, waiting, locked out
He got up outta there, ran for hundreds of miles
He made it to the ocean, had a smoke in a tree
The wind rose up, set him down on his knee
A wave came crashing like a fist to the jaw
Delivered him wings, hey, look at me now
Arms wide open with the sea as his floor
Oh, power, oh
-Pearl Jam, Given to Fly
Wait, the title of my post is “It’s a given to fly.”
Yes, another new post about how Blizzard is giving away the farm. I know they’re dumbing down content that is previous to the current expansion, but now they’re contemplating dumbing down the current content.
That’s right, dumbing down all of it’s content, before a next expansion is even announced.
The recent announcement that’s gotten my feather’s ruffled? Flight in Northrend, for anyone level 68+, provided you have a level 80 character on your account buy them the Cold Weather Flying book to do so. (And seriously, do a “/who 1-80” sometime and the vast majority of players are level 80 nowadays anyway.
Here’s the Blue post to the effect. Scroll down to post 18.
If you follow the logical footsteps leading from this one, given where we’ve been coming from, soon they’ll be announcing books you can buy that grant the reader the level of book buyer. I.e. your level 80 character buys a book in Dalaran, and then mails the book to any low level characters of his. A level 12 Druid alt say. The Druid alt reads the book and is given level 80. You just buy the books you want to elevate any characters you want. See? It’s your choice, and nobody is making you do this. If you want to skip all intervening content, and jump right into raiding with your guild in Ulduar, that’s your option, and no complaining.
Voila! Four-five years later WoW has become Guild Wars with instant max-level characters.
Nothing I’ve seen would suggest Blizzard would not do this, and do this soon. They appear to be running scared, otherwise why are they giving the farm away in this fashion? What’s on the horizon that’s got them panicked? Runes of Magic? Wizard 101? The new “Free to Play!!! (but keep the credit card handy, because we’ve got drugs for you too!)” MMO’s coming out? Is that the trend? The iPhone generation wants all life delivered as an app? Inject the experience straight to the brain? Virtual Heroin and that good old “You win!” feeling? Bury those conservative thoughts out back in a coffin, we’ve got a new world to live in now.
With these moves I’d not at all be surprised the next expansion will be the last. Perhaps they’ve realized they’re out of ideas. That the Emerald Dream isn’t enough for a full expansion of it’s own. Offer Maelstrom/Emerald Dream together, give the masses another 20 levels to knock out in a few days (You owe it to your raiding guild, afterall), and then have folks posed to jump ship to their next MMORPG.
But you know what? If the next MMORPG is going to be as Hello Kitty: Fantasy Island as this WoW has become, is becoming, are they going to be able to maintain their all important numbers? If I can simply buy the ability to scroll the “Game Over” credits on screen at will, what’s the point?
Remember the good old days? When we walked up hill, in the snow, both ways, to raid in Molten Core? I did that on a PvP server. A younger PvP server that was given an influx of way better geared enemy faction players from an older pvp server (where Paladins were the original Death Knights).
I put in my time. I didn’t need the content dumbed down for me to succeed. I didn’t need it dumbed down for my alts. I still don’t. I don’t need it mailed to me in my mailbox.
And, why yes, I do have the options to make it as tough on myself as I want, so why do I care that it’s being handed out like candy to others? Part of being in a MMO is the other people. Even if I don’t interact with them directly, I know we occupy the same world, and, most importantly, we’re abiding by the same rules and limits. This way I can relate the hard work I put into my characters by comparing them with others around me. But if those others around you are given Government bailouts, to have today what you planned on working real hard on getting tomorrow, it’s kind of unfair, and it makes my hard work pointless.
Maybe a third title for everyone that takes the easy ways out. This 3rd title won’t be user selectable. It will always show. It will read, below the name and guild name, “I took the bailout.” Let the hard workers earn the right NOT to be so branded.