There’s a period after when you return after a long break to an MMO you used to love that I call “Rediscovery.” During this phase, you’re not only trying to remember what the heck you were up to and how the game’s changed during your absence, you also rediscover many of the elements you used to love, became quite accustomed to, and subsequently stopped noticing. It’s why I advocate taking a break from MMOs from time to time, if just to “refresh” that perspective. So over the last week or two, I’ve been going through a nice period of rediscovery for World of Warcraft, and more specifically, Battle for Azeroth. I had left last October after burning out a couple months into the new expansion, feeling both overwhelmed at the grind and underwhelmed by the direction and features. I think I needed that, as I had been playing more or less nonstop for two-and-a-half years before that point. And with a somewhat negative exit alongside of many … [Read more...] about Is World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth really that bad?
Archaeology wow battle for azeroth
One of the complicated challenges of writing about World of Warcraft is sorting out the stuff that’s happening now from the stuff that’s been happening the whole time. To use an obvious example, while the game’s aversion to any sort of planned upgrades is a problem, it’s been a problem since Cataclysm; it’s been getting worse, but if you’re angry about it in Battle for Azeroth but not before, that just means you didn’t notice it before now. And yet there are actual new things that weren’t problems before now that have, subsequently, become problems in the present expansion. So today, I’m kicking off a series of articles talking about why WoW fans are generally saying vociferously negative things about the present expansion. It’s not meant to talk about issues that may have already existed without being noticed or the equivalent; rather, it’s stuff that is distinct and specific to this particular … [Read more...] about WoW Factor: Why people are mad at Battle for Azeroth, part one: Combat
The “when will Battle for Azeroth” speculation train is rolling once again because it looks like patch 7.3.5 is just around the corner. We haven’t actually been told when that’s landing yet, of course, but the World of Warcraft community continues to push forward with the sort of boundless optimism that it’s so well known for. “This time is going to be different!” Here’s a spoiler for the future: It’s not. This time is going to be exactly the same, just like how previous times have been exactly the same, just like each time we’ve talked about this have been exactly the same. Betting on anything before October is optimistic, betting before September is wildly unrealistic. Similarly, betting on 2019 is pessimistic, and later than January is wildly unrealistic just as surely. The funny thing is that while we have a relatively small sample size for World of Warcraft expansions, we have a pretty solid set of data just the same. And … [Read more...] about WoW Factor: Guessing at Battle for Azeroth’s release date using math
Hooray, we have a release date for World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth instead of just a release window! And contrary to what many skeptics (myself included) expected to get, it is actually quite a bit faster than other releases. But as you all have no doubt noticed by now, my love of math means that I’m hardly sore about this. It just means that there’s another data point to consider when we look to the future. So let’s talk about this new piece of information while using the same information from the column in which I made a reasonable estimate, based on this new information. Again, I think it’s important to note how much faster this expansion is actually releasing compared to prior expansions; it’s significant, even if it means that the people predicting things like June were being wildly wrong about “optimistic” predictions. (After all, pessimistic predictions were equally wrong, just in the other direction; my own estimates were off by … [Read more...] about WoW Factor: Updating data in the wake of Battle for Azeroth’s release announcement
Support Massively OP on PatreonWere you too busy gaming this week to pay attention to MMO news? Get caught up every Sunday evening with Massively Overpowered’s Week in Review! Classic-but-still-updated MMORPGs were on fire this week! World of Warcraft kicked off PAX East with a bang by announcing Battle for Azeroth’s launch date of August 14th, and then Ultima Online released its Endless Journey patch, taking the 20-year-old game free-to-play for the first time ever. Stay tuned early this week as we roll out all our PAX coverage! In the meantime, read on for the very best of this week’s MMO news and opinions. THIS WEEK’S TOP STORIES World of Warcraft’s Battle for Azeroth expansion launches August 14 - Who had August in the poll? Anybody have August 14th specifically? Because that, my friends, is precisely when World of Warcraft's Battle for Azeroth expansion is launching. So sayeth Blizzard's official… Ultima Online’s F2P … [Read more...] about MMO Week in Review: WoW picks its Battle for Azeroth launch date, Ultima Online goes free-to-play (April 8, 2018)