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  • Veteran players, I salute you …

    2010 - 02.24

    … but for the love of Alexstrasza, stop going on about how easy everything is.

    On my way to work this morning I listened to the Twisted Nether Blogcast, specifically episode 77 with Starman. I’m a newcomer to TN and what I’ve found with the ‘casts so far is that my enjoyment is totally dependent on that week’s guest. That’s not to say that the hosts (Fimlys and Nibuca) are in any way inconsequential, but as the guest appears to stay for the full duration of the show, and is the major portion of the first half, they effectively determine how much I enjoy listening.

    And if I’m honest, I’m not enjoying ep77 and that seems primarily down to the conversation with Starman. I’m sure he’s a very nice guy and I’m probably reading too much into certain statements but almost every answer seemed suffused with “it was much better back in the old days — even when it was worse”, and “it’s totally easy-mode now”. And I keep encountering this sort of thing and want to fire off a rant of my own. At the general concept, not at Starman (just to be clear).

    Newbie alert

    Now, in the interests of full disclosure, I’m still a new player. I installed the battle chest on the day before 3.2 rolled out — a masterpiece of timing which meant that I spent most of the evening installing and patching the battlechest before going to bed, and returned home the following evening to another >1Gb patch download. Which sucked. I have a single, solitary lvl 80, a 56 mage, a 30-ish hunter and a bunch of storage alts. I’m most certainly not an authority on the game.

    It’s still pretty new and exciting for me though — there’s *loads* I haven’t done. I’ve never completed a raid — any raid — other than the big outdoor one in Stranglethorn Vale. Which I did as an 80 with a group of 80s . I’ve not done arenas, or battlegrounds. There are loads of pre-Northrend instances that I’ve never seen. And that’s probably why I find the world-weary, “ah, but back in the day…” shit so painful.

    I get that there are probably things which you enjoyed which have changed. And I don’t think there’s anything controversial in suggesting that Blizzard have made significant changes to gameplay to ensure more of the playerbase sees more of the content. Hell, I’ve read the original manual for vanilla WoW (and the awfully-produced Brady guides that come with the battlechest — more on that later) and half of the systems and mechanics in there just don’t exist any more. So yes, it’s easier.

    About this lawn of yours

    Here’s the thing though: if nearly everything you can talk about was better in some mythical time before Blizzard smacked everything with the tardbat (/nod to Tam), perhaps you might reconsider your position as a player? Note that I’m not saying everyone with a grievance should shut up or get out. That’s not how it works. What I am saying is that if your favourite thing in the game is complaining about things in the game then you’re now playing a metagame and you probably don’t need to pay the subscription fee any more — you can just read the patch notes and start venting.

    Conclusion: the famous Monty Python “you were lucky” sketch with the old men talking about how much tougher things were in the old days and how much happier they were IS A JOKE. A commentary on nostalgia and the distortions inherent in it. It’s not a role model.

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