Warhammer’s major problem, the players.

Warhammer is plagued by some rather terrible flaws, flaws that should have been tested in beta. The flaws have nothing to do with coding errors or graphical problems, but rather center around player actions and motivation. Warhammer Online’s biggest problem is the players are simply not playing it correctly.

Now before you go and post a “don’t blame the players” comment, relax and keep reading. On paper, everything in WAR works. In execution, each piece also works on its own. Scenarios are a noticeable improvement over WoW battlegrounds, PQs are a clever new way to implement PvE, and RvR is a ton of fun when players are battling over keeps or objectives, and truly does separate WAR from other MMOs in that regard. The engine supports PvP above and beyond what previous MMOs have done, and the balance is remarkable for a new MMO with so many class options and abilities.

The problem occurs when you put everything together, and then let MMO players enter the world and decide what they do next. Who could have predicted that contrary to the massive Alliance/Horde imbalance, WAR would feature the exact opposite? What happened to everyone wanting to be the knight in shining armor? Who could have predicted that in a game that starts at level one, rather than at the cap, players would STILL race towards the end regardless of anything around them, and do so in the most grind-like manner? (one scenario per tier)

Mythic coded an amazing game. They nailed the look and feel of the Warhammer IP, they had a great launch, and they continue to support the game at a rapid pace. What Mythic failed to do is provide enough motivation to herd players in the right direction, to guide them towards the great content they have provided. In today’s MMO market, it’s no longer enough just to provide quality content; you also have to guide your players to it. Take for instance open groups. Open groups make finding players for PQs or RvR rather simple, yet many players still don’t know about the /join command, or that you can look at all the open groups around you by clicking an icon. The best way to gather players is still to advertise in regional chat, and this clearly shows the general lack of awareness by players. Lairs are another example of wasted content. Instead of being explored and discovered by players, lairs go largely ignore, not because they are not entertaining (they are), but because the players are not guided to them. (Which is the design point of lairs, to be found by explorers, but clearly catering to the explorer means you exclude the masses)

It’s safe to say Mythic is now aware of this rather dire problem, as the last two events have been a virtual hand-holding to guide players into content. The Witching Night brought RvR lakes to life, and now Heavy Metal directs players on a daily basis, be it towards a scenario, some PQs, or whatever else Mythic has planned. It’s a good first step, but it makes you wonder why it’s a step being taken a month after release, rather than something fleshed out and ready to go on day one. What would Mythic’s retention rate look like if more players have experienced a great keep battle before bolting towards more neon pastures?

Blizzard, masters of hand-holding, gave the MMO market an innovative step forward with daily instances (was Blizzard the first MMO to do this? It’s always dangerous saying Blizzard was the first to do anything…), but Mythic should ‘borrow’ the idea and take it a step further. As others have commented in the past, we need daily RvR lakes, or daily keeps, or even daily scenarios. Each day a new focus, something that drives the majority towards a single point. Fluff rewards are enough to drive players, so create an overall influence bar that runs for a month or so of time, and at each influence level hand out trophies, titles, whatever. Each month reset the bar, mix up the rewards, and continue to guide players. Save the major events for really game-changing stuff like new classes or major content updates.

Who would have guessed that the biggest problem facing WAR would not be content, bugs, or stability, but rather player motivation? Clearly not Mythic, but now lets just hope they move quickly to provide that motivation, and get players into the great content they already created.

And just for the record, I myself have not really experience the majority of the problems listed above. I’ve never had an issue finding a group for a PQ, I’ve seen plenty of RvR, and I’ve never been at a lack for content or something new. That said, Monolith seems to be a very well balanced server, and playing with Forsaken and CoW really helps, so I understand that my situation is somewhat different from the majority. I also understand how /join works, but that’s just elitist old me…

About SynCaine

Former hardcore raider turned casual gamer.
This entry was posted in MMO design, Rant, RvR, Warhammer Online, World of Warcraft. Bookmark the permalink.

48 Responses to Warhammer’s major problem, the players.

  1. Thallian says:

    City of Heroes had repeatable quests and instances you could do daily.. I dunno fi that counts. I’ve yet to see Blizzard innovate in anything other than polish.

  2. syncaine says:

    Yea I don’t mean daily quests (which I find beyond pointless), I mean daily instances that changed each day, motivating players to visit them.

  3. Hudson says:

    Most of the problem was that the beta was very focused. They forced us to use templates and login to certain content and only rarely were people allowed to level from 1 to whatever so that we could see what the population would do.

    The numbers WERE off balance in beta. Destruction ALWAYS outnumbered Order, but Mythic wrote it off. When I got the chance and they let us, I always re rolled at level 1 to see what was happening. It would be empty because people would use templates sure, but even the template areas were dead to open RVR and PVE questers. I should have taken notes right then and there but I was too caught up in the fact that it was a beta and only a certain amount of people would be let into it. I blamed a small beta crowd for the issue. Even then chat channels were silent and the countryside oddly still.

  4. sid67 says:

    As I wrote in my blog entry today, i am leaving WAR for a bit. The game actually peaked for me back in Tier 3 and I am finding that lack of purpose in Tier 4 to be the main reason for my lack of motivation. It’s not really a “can’t find people” thing as much as it is a “what’s the point” thing.

  5. Ravious says:

    Well first I don’t believe the imbalance is game breaking… I heard some statistic a month or so after launch that it was like 1.3 Destro : 1 Order. I do agree it is a funneling problem. There should have been 1 great PQ per Chapter instead of 2 alright PQs and 1 good one. There should have been solo content in RvR lakes.

    And, I agree with having daily objectives. Right now it seems like people are in grind mode. Grind to T4, Grind to 40, then Grind your RR. The game is great as a “journey” but Mythic has not lead that culture to that point…

    If 1.10 is their magic snake oil they really need to get it out sooner… the events are at least showing the right steps.

  6. coppertopper says:

    DAOC has better keep battles the the successor. That still blows me away. In DAOC you CAN blow holes in keep walls with ballista then enter thru that hole! The vanillaness of keep battles confounds me considering mythic has a 5 year old IP with better RvR content then. ‘new hotness’.

    Come to think of it, 5 year old DAOC has better content/pve/motive to rvr then WAR. WAR has collision detection and way way way more logical class balance then DAOC…but that’s it. What hapened Mythic? Any other ex daoc players agree on these points?

  7. Grimjakk says:

    You mean Trebuchet… ;)

    Ballistae are mostly used to take down the enemies Trebs.

    I’d argue that T3 and T4 sieges are a lot better designed than DAOC sieges. In DAOC it usually boiled down to trebbing so many holes in the walls that there wasn’t any point to defending them and people holed up in the Lord Room. In WAR, the walls are still chokepoints that the defenders can win back… without muling out tons of wood and standing around for hours /repair-ing the walls.

  8. Shmeep says:

    Why is the solution always MORE handholding, more guidance?

    • anon says:

      I blame wow for this it brought 10mil new players to the mmo scene and they all need their hands held. Simple as that really wow has set back mmo development 10-20 years since mow all the big companies that own everything want “the next wow” imo real mmo players been waiting for the next UO and we still are. This is how ccp has kept in business lol

  9. Neil says:

    I would absolutely agree. In the early stages there isn’t enough guidance. The problem is and I am sure would have been reported, was that the help as added very late in the BETA, which is understandable, however isn’t not good enough. Especially if you have some real innovation. Open groups is a real crowd pleaser.

  10. Bonedead says:

    It is the WoW generation. Even if you’re not apart of it, go play WoW, make a level 1, right now. Tell me you don’t feel pressured to level as fast as possible, skipping everything you can to earn just a little bit more exp/hour. Tell me I’m wrong.

    I mean let’s face it, people who played MMOs before WoW are extremely outnumbered.

    On my server it seems like there are maybe 200 total people, ever. It is disgusting considering we are a destination server in the transfers. There are maybe 5 people in Tier 1 Empire v Chaos. 5 people at prime time, are you kidding me?

    Someone said here in another post that the Scenarios should be taken out and DAoC like BGs implemented and I couldn’t agree more. Just make like 3 per tier, shit, that would rule so much!

    Make 40s unable to join Scenarios/BGs, which forces them to RvR.

    Most importantly, MERGE SERVERS/CLUSTER. I am probably going to quit this game simply because of the population problems. Every server had Low pop for both Order/Destruction yesterday and it was the saddest thing I’ve seen in an MMO in a while. Especially since WAR is such an enjoyable game for me. But, if I can’t play it the way I want and I’m forced to PvE so often because no one is on, then I don’t know if I want to play that.

    If I do quit, funny thing, I’m going to DAoC. It is always fun for a while, I can usually get to 50 before I’m bored.

  11. Yitu says:

    Well written. Also well written the DAoC-comment from coppertopper!

  12. coppertopper says:

    Thanks for the correction Grim. And yeah there was a lot of just ‘screw the battering rams – bring out the trebuchets’ in daoc. I didn’t make it to tier 3 to see the large keep battles in war, so I’ll take your word that it works on a tactical level. It just looked so cool to see the wear on the keep walls as the trebs went to work.

  13. Snafzg says:

    The keeps weren’t designed to be destructable or dynamic (getting bigger and stronger over time) because they were added into the game for the first time around February 2008 and there was no way Mythic could release the game on time if they made them any better. Before then, keeps weren’t even going to appear in this game, however, beta testers begged for them, so Mythic added them in.

    If they seem tacked on and less interesting than what you’ll find in DAOC it’s because they were never part of the original design plan.

    The original design was much more scenario/instance based. Ironic, isn’t it? Don’t get me wrong, what they have managed to do with this game since early 2008 compared to what it is today is absolutely astounding. Too bad it just isn’t jiving.

    I agree with most of what is said up top. The players aren’t playing WAR as it is meant to be played. Then again, Mythic isn’t really providing much guidance either. Should they? In a perfect world, the players would figure it out for themselves naturally. Unfortunately, they aren’t – so yes, I believe guidance and hand-holding IS the answer.

    If left to its own devices, this game is going to tank in comparison to its potential. Oh, I’m sure it will will be more successful than DAOC and LOTRO. But not by much and imho, that would be a complete failure of reaching its potential.

  14. syncaine says:

    Yea as much as I hate to admit it, WAR does need a certain level of hand-holding, at least to get players INTO the correct content. What we don’t need is the ‘cookies for everyone’ system WoW uses for PvP.

    As for DAoC keeps, remember originally they were rather plain too. It took a few years for Mythic to revise them and really fine-tune what they had. As Snafzg points out, keeps were included somewhat late in beta, and I have no doubt Mythic is going to do more with them, perhaps as soon as 1.2.

    WAR is 2 months old, and making direct comparisons to DAoC or WoW, with all their patching, is a bit skewed. The core of the game is very solid, with the main problem being players have to work too hard to get to the good stuff. I’m always the one putting together RvR warbands, or starting up PQ groups, which is fine for me, but I could see how less aggressive players would not, and just run around with little to do. Making some tweaks so those groups are even more readily available is needed.

  15. Bonedead says:

    Let us also not forget that DAoC had to completely revise the whole RvR scene with New Frontiers, changing absolutely everything about the frontiers except the names.

    The reason I try to compare WAR to DAoC is because it is Mythic. I thought that they learned lessons from DAoC and that they would use those lessons while creating Warhammer. What works, what doesn’t, what people like, etc. I guess I was hoping for DAoC 2.0, which I feel the masses could enjoy, masses like me anyways. But, they had to be cool guys with fucking sunglasses, trying to come off as a WoW competitor with hopes of getting the big bucks and a big market share. Look at what that gets you.

    Stick to what you know imo.

  16. Twanni says:

    “Who could have predicted that contrary to the massive Alliance/Horde imbalance, WAR would feature the exact opposite? What happened to everyone wanting to be the knight in shining armor? Who could have predicted that in a game that starts at level one, rather than at the cap, players would STILL race towards the end regardless of anything around them, and do so in the most grind-like manner? (one scenario per tier)”

    The answer to each question here happens to be the beta testers. Despite that Mythic never tested the game in Beta ‘as a whole’, these are precisely the issues raised by beta testers (atleast on the EU side of things) time and time again.

  17. syncaine says:

    Yea but in WoW’s beta, Horde outnumbered Alliance. The theory all along was that beta players are the more hardcore types, and prefer to play the ‘different’ sides. For whatever reason, the hardcore AND casuals picked Destruction in WAR, which is rare in an MMO. Humans and the ‘good’ side have always been more popular in the past.

  18. Dracon says:

    Well, overpromoting the “bad” side may have something to do with Destro dominance, so Mythic should not be surprised, but human beings are unpredictable in their choices of “bad” and “good.” Why do you think we have such a hard time figuring out ourselves? Why do you think video games are designed with no moral values, except two opposing factions that are neither truly bad or good? I think of myself as hardcore and casual, and I picked Order. Go figure.

  19. syncaine says:

    I was just thinking more from a historic MMO perspective. Alliance/Horde, DAoC Albion/Mid/Hib, EVE Caldari, etc.

    It’s true Mythic really hyped Destro, but maybe they did it because the THOUGH Order would be more popular, and so tried to even it up by promoting Destro. Maybe they just did too good of a promotion job?

  20. Bonedead says:

    I didn’t realize that PvEers were attracted to Destro.

    As Syncaine acknowledges, I just assumed PvEers would go Order (Alliance/Albion) and the PvPers would go Destro (Horde/Midgard).

    I am usually the PvPer that plays on the PvEer side for more PvP competition.

  21. brainclutter says:

    It wasn’t just people in beta though. People on the forums were heavily slanted toward Destruction for the longest time by at least a 60/40 split.

    You can argue that the best testers were the most hardcore of the hardcore, however, people following your game via forums represents a more interested general crowd. The crowd you were making your game for.

    Currently, it’s about 1.13:1 (dest:order) on my server. It isn’t too bad in oRvR but scenarios rarely pop for Destruction.

  22. Saylah says:

    Oh gosh, anything that seems like WOW Dailies gives me a tummy ache. It was the icing on the cake for me that said, “I really have to go now, if this is what becomes of an MMO.” Dailies are the treadmill of treadmills. Oh Lawd, please don’t do that to WAR.

    My other concern is what is the “right content”? Today the focus is some Open RVR but you don’t actually have the couple of hours it can take for such an event. Which is all well and good but now the Scenarios which you might have wanted to do are empty because people are off doing the “right stuff.” All of the content should be viable at all times. I don’t want a game where it’s, “today is PVP day, tomorrow is Open RVR day and the next is PVE.”

    I’d rather see them collapse the servers and I’ll wait in a queue to get into a high populated game. But that’s because I’m used to queues. The WOW server I was on usually had queues and even with free xfers people didn’t leave so clearly, some of us would rather have queues in order to have a heavily populated environment.

  23. Joyelel says:

    Part of the problem IS with the mentality of some of the players. In particular, I would say the min-maxers of the game population do the most to suck the fun and life out of any good game. Typically they are also the same ones who rush to the highest level. Anything for the edge, the advantage. It’s really just a maturity issue. Min-maxers seem to be looking for the next thing rather than just enjoying the here and now. Get enough min-maxers playing and voila, no other scenario pops but the one that provides the “optimal” gains. Certain quests are avoided or certain PQ’s are being “grinded” due to the payoffs. Fortunately many of those players left the game once they rushed to 40 and discovered (to their surprise?) there was nothing going on in the RvR part of the game.

  24. Hades says:

    War’s problems are that RVR and PVE gameplay is fundamentally broken. When players attempted to bring this up in beta they squashed any view that dissented from their own. There are too many RVR lakes, they are too big, too cumbersome to get around, too unrewarding even with the recent adjustments, defenders are not rewarded at all, there’s no incentive to take BFO’s, and War’s RVR is inferior to DAOC’s and DAOC is a 6+ year old game.

    In DAOC the new frontiers created one end game RVR lake, efficient travel, and siges were more than just bashing down a couple of doors. Warhammer’s zone locking scheme and mandatory PVE ward gear grinding aren’t popular either, so many players are simply sour on the game in T4.

    The PVE itself is terribly boring, you get less exp for grouping so many people just solo quest/grind, and PQ’s are unused because there are too many per tier and stages II/III/etc generally need a real group to complete. Overall PVE is a total snorefest and you feel like you are playing a very boring solo game. Exp’ing to level 40 should be about 50% faster than it is if T4 is supposed to be the end game.

    MMO gamers, especially PVP gamers, are not as forgiving of being lied to by gaming companies. This isn’t 1999 where your choices are UO, EQ, or AC1. PVP gamers can hop right into some free and very fun FPS games that are much less grindy, and not have to pay a monthly fee to be tortured with grind. MMORPG’s have traditionally held an edge over FPS’s due to them feeling more like a virtual world, but as more companies get on the failboat by launching misleading products the big beneficent are those semi-persistent FPS games.

    Games that cater to PVP audiences have between 60-90 days to get it right or suffer 50% or more for a cancellation rate. Its not like the old days where you skill hundreds of thousands of copies, and then gamers put up with a lot of crap for 12 months while the company patches in what they promised at release. AOC is estimated to be down to 100k or so subs from 800k, and Warhammer is following a very similar trend. Players are leaving, servers are dying, more players leave because they can’t advance via PVP, etc.

    Mythic is simply too slow with the big changes that everyone knows need to happen, and they are trying to use little mini-patches to experiment with PVE and PVP rewards. They are going to lose a lot more players with that approach, and the analyst who predicted they’d be around 200k subs worldwide is probably more correct than any of us could have imagined.

  25. Porter says:

    Why the rush to 40 and the “End Game”? How I loath that term as applied to MMOs. Apparently that is the “start game” for some people. It’s as though the rest of the game the preceding 39 levels are just some sort of unlock key they’re being forced to engage in.

    Go play an FPS then. No, really – go.

    Typically I’m more of a fan of FPSes my self – the team based ones like COD, QW:ET, etc. There’s a modest amount of leveling in the course of a campaign – and then bam – you’re done. But you’ve essentially started with the “end game” that everyone seems to be seeking in WAR.

    Essentially you’re looking to remove the R (as in role) in MMORPG. RPGs aren’t just about the stats – they’re about the story, and exploring, and role playing.

  26. Pwning says:

    On Azazel all we do on order is make sure the entire T4 zones are always blue and attempt to encourage Destruction to attempt to lock zones, and que more. Mostly order is just bored waiting for destruction to come play.

  27. Forkhead says:

    I would say for them to increase the rewards to missioning and dungeons, like loot and XP. That would bring players out.

  28. Pingback: What's Wrong With Warhammer Online? Could It Be You? | MMO Explorer

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  30. Andrew says:

    When I first got into the mmo scence, Final Fantasy XI was my first mmo. Still to this day, that is one of the most hard core and challenging mmo’s. SquareEnix refuses to hold hands when they release content, but for some reason us players always find the content. A lot of armor/equipment/food have hidden effects, which we have also discovered. We’ve always had a way of looking for people for groups, and have been able to use it successfully over the years.

    I would just venture to say the difference between WAR and FFXI are the communites. FFXI has a very friendly community (although some bickering between HNMLS)…we help each other, we teach each other about the game. In my first week of playing, I knew how to join a group…look for members….use all the different chat commands….find my way to the xp camp locations…etc.

    Most people who went to WAR are from WoW, where…lets face it…the community is pretty crappy. If I were Mythic, I wouldn’t do any hand holding..I would just let the players play the game the way they see fit. Eventually, as word spreads on some of the content, and if that content is good, people will do it.

  31. Dave says:

    Do we really want to blame over a million people for playing the game wrong? Is that what we have reduced ourselves to these days in order to avoid accepting another failed MMO launch? I understand Warhammer was the last great hope of many gamers, but if this game was as great as the author of the article claims it to be, people would engage it.

    Not everyone is rushing, not everything is the fault of the WoW generation. Warhammer plays like one long boring single player game and Mythic took great strides to eliminate the tools that players are used to having in order to build a healthy community from economy to forums to chat to lfg tool. Everything they did seems to push people to vows of silence since there is either no need to communicate or when there is a need, there isn’t a functional tool to get the job done.

    If the pve quests were engaging there would be a large portions of people attracted to them, but there are not. Public quests are boring after the novelty wears off which is why they go empty almost the entire day. They are a very poor substitute for real group based activities that challenge and require team work. Even the pvp lakes are sterile and for the most part pointless. There is no sense of ownership, they seem to exist for no other reason that to be there.

    I think people played this game exactly as it was designed and found it boring. People can put up with a lot of crap from an MMO at release as long as it is entertaining. It doesn’t matter what else happens, sounds good in practice or is possible in the near future if the game lacks entertainment value people will just go somewhere else.

  32. Bricktop says:

    Everything works on Paper is exactly it. The application does not. Take for example collision: This is the one mechanic I have been waitng for in a fantasy based MMO forever since DAoC really. In Warhammer, whats the point? in ORVR there is a 150 billion acre field if the 3 tanks on the server happen to be playing and if they decide to work together, whats to stop the enemy advance from going around them? The terrain could have been made to accomodate the mechaincs better. ie: more mountain passes, bridges ect. While keeps are an impotant feature? Why genaricly in every zone? They could have done some wonderfull variety in the rvr lakes like controllable towns.. town battles could employ the use of collision on a grand scale in narrow streets and alleyways and stairs ect.

    Leveling guild: Awsome Idea! But another failure. I was so tired of chat channels with the benefit of a tag over a person’s head. What Mythic created was just that a lvling chat channel. All people of like level all over the world doing their own thing gaining xp helps the guild level. Ok great… How about guild presence in RVR or at a PQ or quests whathave you.. this would lead to comraderie and closness and allowing folks to realy see how they work together for RVR. also a good way to practice tactics.

    The WOW generation does have alot to do with it. People in DAOC worked together. Why? WoW wasnt out yet. Wow is a game of personal gain, and as such so is Warhammer now. The only thing DAoC had missing was collision, IMHO they should add it and scrap Warhammer.

    Scenarios.. Are you kidding me? get rid of them. They empty the world, you cant employ tactics too much because you can only go in with one group of guildies. Not saying it cant be done, but its not easy to only have 1/2 a team. WoW players run rampant doing their own thing in there and have found the way to max THEIR personal xp and renown gains at the expense of losing every one they play, thus hurting their team.
    No wonder PQs and ORVR are dead.

    There is no reward for the realm other than a step closer to the main city. Oh I forgot I get 5 more influence at PQs..

    You cant have a team based game that as it turns out requires no team, in order for you to be successfull. Then its the single player game I keep hearing about. People are not interested in teamwork, or tactics, as there isnt any really other than zerg, due to the clusterfrack I mentioned about collision.

    So it shoud be evident that WoW is largley responsible for the destruction of Warhammer. Without working twords the greater good wherin the rewards will come it has turned into another personal gain grind fest, and group when you HAVE to situation. Kind of silly really.

  33. Reggs says:

    The problem for me with WAR is different, I play on a high pop server, players all around, not a problem finding folks to do PQs, keep def/attack, etc but what killed for me and for the majority of my guild was the GFX engine/art/animation.

    First of all, the textures and art are very bland, dull and boring, the ground, trees and the general environment looks very lacking, especially when you compare it to other games, that require LESS PC specs but looks and plays better.

    I have a high end gaming PC, being able to run Fallout 3, Far Cry 2, etc on max settings, hell, even WoTLKs new areas are beautiful, well done, the music and atmosphere are very well done.

    I honestly think Mythic made a mistake when they decided to work of the existing code base for WAR, they should have re-written it to be up to speed with current technology, intead, in my opinion, WAR runs like a good quality Korean free MMO.

  34. Auntie says:

    I can understand why ppl rush to max level.

    Ppl believe that orvr begins @ endgame…this point is true, if u r not max level, how can u help in conquering the capital city of your enemy?

    That’s why everyone rush to lv 40 ASAP. EA should have expected this result.

  35. MaNiaGG says:

    Thats what you get, when you want to be the new WoW… WoWplayers, heh

  36. Concur with Dave and Bricktop. Everything in WAR does not work. And if you blame player’s because it’s “their” motivation, not sure we’d agree on how game design is supposed to work. I mean it would be like hiring a marketing firm to create a multi-million dollar marketing campaign that totally flops and say to the client, “It’s the people’s fault. They just didn’t get it.”

    On specifics, just look at Open RVR. I can’t believe people are saying Open RVR is working great because they’ve been in Open RVR combat that’s lasted “5 hours” with tons of people. Well I can guarantee that a month of that, without any changes to the gameplay dynamics, and you will be bored. Don’t get me wrong, the excitement of large scale battles is definitely exhilarating but it will only take you so far without some added depth and meaning to it. And right now, keep combat is simplistic and boring because of the single choke point. They need to add some variety to it so it’s more than like chess than tic tac toe.

    Anyways this subject has been talked to death, just go to the Warhammer Alliance RVR forums to take your pick of posts that are created daily. You’ll find more than enough people concurring on the things that are lacking from the game.

  37. Raithe says:

    Completely wrong.

    Gameplay is horribly balanced, it just seems people don’t fully understand it yet. I’ve been playing pretty much continuously (while awake) for the last month or so, but other players are still saying things like “wow, we’re underpowered, 2 of us couldn’t take down that shaman (or zealot).” I roll my eyes and correct their misunderstanding – healing is horribly overpowered (Don’t believe me? Check the scenario statistics, healers often have double the highest DPS output). Tanks are next in line in stupid design, with snares, roots, ranged attacks and 360 degree “razes” that do more damage than DPS classes can muster using a rank 4 morale “skill.” The best ranged attacks of all are given to the Marauder/White Lion (melee DPS), with their ability to lasso people into a waiting group of death. Let’s not forget about the annoying and ridiculous magnet skills that suck every enemy (magnetics somehow know who is friend and who is foe?) into a nice little unmoving clump of easy killing. To cap all the bad design off, range itself has serious issues, especially with client/server latencies involved. I have screenshots of getting hit with melee attacks (because the server says its valid) while my client is refusing to act on my commands because I’m too far away from the melee attacker/target.

    RvR is horribly designed. There should be very little reward for taking a keep, all the benefits should arise from maintaining control over an area. Access to renown merchants would have been one of the better ideas for such benefits, but anyone can simply fly to their capital city to access the same merchants. The rest of the so-called benefits of controlling a zone are usually useless to the characters most directly involved in maintaining zone control. To sum it up, their is more value in letting a keep be taken by the enemy and then retaking it later yourself, than there is in maintaining control in a zone. Those of us who like to defend find ourselves on the short end of the stick, every time.

    Basically, Warhammer boils down to being pretty much the opposite of what has been suggested in this blog. The playerbase is surprisingly skillful at playing the game and capitalizing on bad design when necessary. Allies could be more helpful, but most of the time seem to be only unconsciously self-centered. It’s actually one of the better playerbases to which I’ve been exposed. It’s the bugs, lag, poor design, and developer biases that have ruined the game and will shortly lead to its downfall. The recent server consolidations are only the beginning.

  38. menf says:

    A couple thoughts – the player guidance sucks. Compared to COD4 it is lame. There are the tips in the center bottom and half the time they don’t make sense. It took me a long time to figure out crafting and open parties etc… would it be so hard to make the open parties icon flash until you click on it like other FPS tutorials do?

    Also, I have had terrible luck lately finding groups for PQs or RvR on the Azalea server. It seems like everyone left when the new WoW launched. Every time I log in now I hope for ANOTHER server transfer cause there is hardly anyone there.

    Too bad. The game was really fun for a few weeks and it still has potential. I think they would do better to use a match.com approach to putting people on servers. Find out when people play, how often and what style.. then pick a server for them.

  39. anon says:

    The whole system is flawed. Nothing jives together. People talk about players being in the “correct” content. That term is entirely meaningless. First off because correct is solely determined by the guidance of the game. Second because as far as Ican tell Mythic wants the players to do everything all at once.

    The facts is that that the players know the game better than Mythic. Not the other way around. People figured out very early on that scenarios are the most rewarding and they enumerated the way it was working out and would continue to work out within the first week of release.

    All you need to do is look at the Victory Point system. There is no “correct” content, because the game is just plain flawed. If you do waht the game guides you to do the game itself actually becomes non-strategic.

    The game itself is a mish-mash of stuff just smashed together and then it has a bunch of incentives to get everyone to do everything all at once.

    And when the players point out that this does not work and that people are gaming the system like they always have since CRPGs were invented, Mythic goes well what if we up this reward?

    How about you actually make it so abandoning a zone actually does what it should rather than upping the keep rewards?

    Players are not the problem. Not in general. The game contrsdicts itself on many levels. When people say that players are not doing the right or correct content they are making an assumption about purpose and design.

    However that assumption does not fit the reality of the game. The reality is there is no “correct” content. None what so ever. It is like the dining philosophers problem where each philsopher winds up taking the other guy’s fork and you get deadlock. You can’t PvP because you haven’t PvEed, you can’t take a zone because no one is there, etc. etc.

    The whole game is a house of cards and usually its in the process of falling down. This whole idea of people not playing the correct content is backwards.

    The reason no one is playing that “correct” content is not because they do not understand the game or are stupid or whatever reason. It is because it is not there. You can never play the correct content because it does not exist.

    Give any situation in T4 and I can come up with a valid reason that fits that situation for why you should be doing something else to achieve the golas of that other situation. Its tied into knots.

  40. anonymous says:

    I think the sheep understand that the PvE is utterly boring, and the ORvR is barely any better.

    ORvR: Ok, this is fun if you like 1. riding around on a fake horse over the river and through the woods forever and a day to 2. find out you rode around for 10 minutes just to miss out on the action 3. get there in time to actually fight a door or 4. die in seconds so you can repeat 1.

    The sheep play scenarios because despite the nice rendering and large sizes of the maps, the world feels utterly static and devoid of life, which leaves the exploration of a “new” area feeling even more redundant than playing Serpent’s Passage for the millionth time.

    Scenarios are not killing the game. They ARE the game. Concentrate on making them better. As for whether they should remove some of the PvE content and reduce the size of the map: how many people would actually notice?!? “OMG, Griffon Warmaster #28 is no longer here?” “Where’d crafting merchant #55 go? I really need some arid soil, and where else could I possibly find that??””Where’d that PQ go to? You know, the one that has 3 stages? The first stage is the one where you kill 200 meaninglessly low level mobs by hitting the same three buttons again and again, and after you kill the main boss you might get a glass vial for that insanely rewarding crafting portion of the game? Oh, shucks. At least we can still do that other one – you know, that one with the 3 stages where you…”

  41. Levi says:

    Reading the comments for this post was highly entertaining, the number of people who contradict each other on what is wrong with the game and what should be done to fix it was amusing.

    Also I love people who use exaggeration to try and prove a point when they obviously haven’t really thought about what they are saying.

    Frankly, the problem with WAR is the players and all you have to do to find the evidence is read the comments posted above.

    Thanks guys.

  42. someguye says:

    “more handholding is the solution?” ya right, wrath is fun, but its disneyland where anyone can get everything really easily and wow is more of a “movie” then an MMO then ever, is it a good thing? meh, sort of, if you like pve. original wow pvp was what MADE world of warcraft what it is today, do you think it was anything else? MC? BWL? it was all about real pvp, you know armies vs. armies, just look at original AV, and any real world PvP. these events were almost totally pointless in regards to decent rewards and were these events being handed to us on a silver plater? NO! we all just did it for fun, there was no honor system or anything.

    so obviously “more handholding” is not a real solution. look at arena, the ultimate in handing out amazing epics for minimal work, is this what “saved” world of warcraft? im pretty sure most people avoid arena like the plague because generally it isn’t very fun.

  43. WoEyE says:

    Lots of great comments. I’d like to add my random thoughts, too :)
    Personally what I really hate is the rush-to-endgame thing. For most players levels 1 to (max-1) just means mindless grind and has no purpose besides pushing their XP bar. The exploring is gone. The journey is gone. I feel that one of the major reasons for this is Blizzard. Because they trained players for years to care only about endgame. But what does endgame mean in WoW? It menas endless grind for better gear that will never ever stop. It’s the endgame where your character will either pwn or be pwned, depending on how much time you spent. It’s the neverending lure for getting access to the ultimate gear of doom and pwn everyone else to feel good.

  44. Bricktop says:

    Levi Mostly this is opinions you fucking retard, and some of us have been gaming for yewars, and we know what deal breakers are.. when the Devs fail to deliver what they put on paper and they deliver it to the wow generation, the failure of warhammer is the end result.

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  46. 1stCalamity says:

    lol, im leveling slow, like 10 days and at level 10.

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