I'm a new player (EU) that started one month ago, I play on Draenor, and I've had a blast with this game. It's so much fun that I don't want to play anything else, and for a long time, I didn't get what everyone was talking about. Why were people complaining, I thought? what's the issue? The combat is great, the world — just wow!, the art, soundtrack.. it's a masterpiece of a game. It really is. All the things the YouTubers have been talking about are true!, I thought. This really is the best MMORPG ever!, I said. But something feels missing. It's like eating your Grandma's best ever homemade cookies.. on Wall Street. Everyday. And that's when it hit me.
I absolutely get what the problem is.
It's the community. The legendary sense of community everyone reminisces about is not there, it just doesn't exist anymore, and it's not hard to see why. I don't have to have played this game since vanilla to know the road it's been down because I've seen this happen with games before.
The players become selfish, they become disinterested in helping others, they hyperfocus on their own needs and goals and people are treated like NPCs there to help them as opposed to real genuine people. It's all about me, me, me. I have this mount I need to farm, so I don't care about helping you with…. (enter here). Oh, you're not doing exactly what I expect right now at this very second? I'm on a tight schedule and my time is extremely important, I'll just leave this group and abandon what we've worked on, goodbye. Guys come join my ( ) to help me with ( ) !! oh, you have something you want help with first? it'll take 20 seconds? that's 20 seconds of my time you're asking for, no, you're kicked. Loot system and levelling experience revamps be damned if the Community doesn't entirely shift.
I tried joining a guild or two, and they just weren't guilds. They were groups of players looking to exploit everyone else around them for their own gain, there wasn't any joint effort to do anything at all. There wasn't any pride, or Guild history, or introductory measure. It was more like being in General Chat, only the asks were more frequent. Oh you're here now? ok cool.. never spoken to again, unless you speak first. You're likely kicked if you wait for them to assume their role of, you know, Guild Officer. Being in charge? actually making things happen? Trying to get groups together, and even getting help yourself was all but impossible, people just ignore you 98% of the time. I gave up on all that and just went back to using Group Finder / LFR for joint-effort stuff because the alternative was getting me nowhere. It's the same song and dance there, though at least people are in agreement. There's no talking, there's no making friends, everyone's in a rush, everyone has to go, go, go, get things done, and then leave. No stopping, or you're out. Every second must be absolutely effective and efficient.
I had a conversation with one player, a returning vet going in mostly blind, the first week I started the game, on a separate new player server. We met because we and a few others happened to be in Brill when a Dwarf swooped down on his mount and started murdering everything. Being confused and amazed new players in that joint-experience created about 10 minutes of chit chat between us, and then we went our separate ways. I met that one aforementioned player later on in a separate location whilst questing, and they recognised me from earlier. They told me about some of the history of the game, about the giant raids on Orgrimmar and how angry people would get over wipes back in Vanilla, and that the community aspect didn't really exist anymore. That was cool, man. I really looked forward to having more stuff like that happen, but I haven't had anything like that since. We didn't care about rushing to the next big thing because we were ignorant of the next big thing, we just liked the fucking game, and that was enough. After hitting level cap, that all changes forever.
Any groups I come across either barely speak English, are overtly passive aggressive for no reason (presumably teenagers), or entirely disinterested in socialising because they have better things to do than talk to some random guy holding them up while they're heading to (their next really important objective that's on a timer and they must get to right now!!).
WoW is like a high-maintenance job for most players I come across, and it saddens me.
I can tell this is not at all how it used to be, the world doesn't reflect the current playerbase. I can only imagine what great adventures everyone used to have on this game, back when most people had to work much harder to get what they wanted and superiority complexes weren't so prevalent. If I just pretend I'm playing a solo offline RPG I have a blast, but the forced online elements are ironically the anchor to this game's experience. I'm considering that Classic might be my best bet, though a lot of people maintain that it sucks or isn't what Vanilla was due to the many of the reasons I've listed here. I did try a new character on it for a few hours and had a ton of fun, but I had things to do on retail. It's likely I'll switch at some point soon, I have hopes I'll get something similar to the experience some of you guys had if I put in the effort. I imagine less angsty kids, elitists and what have you will be drawn to the 'uglier' game with a much slower pace. There's also the fact that I love the lore that's keeping me here, especially all the Lovecraftian shit about the Old Gods.I've been reading the Warcraft chronicles, watching lore videos, paying attention to the characters in game and their motives. All of that is 10/10, fantastic, stellar.
I'm in love with the world itself, the gameplay, the RPG, but not the MMO.
I'll keep playing Retail for Shadowlands for the time being, but to the Veterans of this series that have been complaining for so long, I just want to let you know that I now entirely get what you've been talking about. I feel you. This game is not currently the World of Warcraft many people hear about today. Glad to get this off my chest, and thank you for reading if you've made it this far.
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