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Thread: Cataclysm Post Mortem - Dungeons and Raids

  1. #1
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    Cataclysm Post Mortem - Dungeons and Raids

    http://us.battle.net/wow/en/blog/4488898

    Since the one for questing went ok. My only problem with it is Blizzard makes no mention about a lack of content from between Cata Launch and 4.2. Fail to mention raids that were supposed to be expected but clearly scrapped such as Well of Eternity.

    Overall I understood their dilemna with Heroic 5-mans and the new 4.3 Dungeons though not too challenge were at least fun. I also wanted to hear how they felt about the 10-25man split. in essence it nearly cut a raiders content in half compared to WoTLK, though raiding the same place twice sucked I at least it was something to do.

    LFR changed that a bit but I think Blizzard should consider shifting LFR to a 10 man format that way the difficulty can be ramped up just a bit and I can feel like I"m simply pugging without the large wait. Not facerolling (if not simply afking) through in hopes I roll higher then the next sucker.

    But the main thing that kind of bothers me is since I read this on MMO-Champion there is an MMO-Report on Rift right below it. I can't help but feel envious of Rift players on how they have gotten so many more real content updates this year while all we really got were two that go stale faster then ever for us who have been playing since Vanilla.

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    I found this post mortem a bit disappointing. There seems to be no recognition that things could have been done better. While 'the quests guy' recognised that there were some things to do better next time, 'the raids guy' seems to think he did a bang-up job. He could have said something about the decision to recycle assets (for ZA/ZG/Dragon Soul) which I firmly believe was just a pragmatic decision they were forced to make as a result of the other cataclysm art development. They could (as Kahmal said) have acknowledged the issues with the scheduling of content release (big gaps early and probably at the end). They could have said more about the issues of scale/'epicness' in both Deathwing fights, or that maybe they got a bit carried away with the in game movies. They could have acknowledged the issues they had with heroic dungeon tuning, or with the way they nerfed firelands, or overtuned ragnaros.

    I think it's fair to acknowledge that they did good some good and innovative stuff with the raid content in this expansion. I would just have been happier if they acknowledged the room for improvement.

    Edit: actually, seems I missed a paragraph - he did acknowledge the difficulty of heroic dungeons as an issue - nothing about the raid content though...
    Last edited by swelt; 03-06-2012 at 04:47 AM.

  3. #3
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    Actually, I think 'the raid guy' implied they could've done better. After all, the three raid instances he loves the most this xpack are ... T11, T11 and ... T11!
    Quote Originally Posted by Ion
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    I can't see this post mortem talk as anything else than PR before MoP. How else can can this guy be able to avoid to problematize raid and dungeon related topics that we actually have read in blue posts during the Cataclysm expansion?

    For me T11 was the best tier of raiding and dungeoneering since Ulduar. Lots of raid content, a non trivial normal mode with heroic modes that felt like a bonus working on for my 3 day raiding guild, an extra boss content reward for top raiders, three different raids for a change of scenery. Damn i had a really good time and got so pleasantly surprised cause i was honestly expecting less after wotlk.

    On the other hand this raid content along with tougher 5 mans came at the expense of fast and casual content. My more casual minded friends had a hard time with tougher 5 mans being matched with LFD. I think a lesson Blizzard has to learn here is that tough content can NEVER be aimed towards LFD groups that wants fast VP with minimal effort.

    At around end of february 2011 i recall that my more casual friends started to drop off. All 5 man heroics were tried and all VP gear farmed. End game was reached. Then ZA/ZG came out a bit later with even harder 5 man content that didn't really make them feel thrilled altho i tanked them thru it pretty often to help out. The ability to que up for two 5 man dungeons over and over.. and over tho, didn't make them more fun. I think people needs to be saved from themselves. If consuming ZA/ZG over and over was the best way to gear up, the friends i had at least did it until they got sick of it.

    I guess the same thrill i felt about haing T11 with lots of raiding content was on the other side of the spectra equally disappointing for more casual solo players.

    And now reading the PR fluff post mortem it seems Blizzard wants to make an inverted T11 for the T14 content and instead make me the disappinted customer.

    " End Time, Well of Eternity, and Hour of Twilight all provide epic play experiences to our players, but at the real sweet spot of difficulty, complexity, and time commitment."

    Does it really have to be so binary? Are the resources so scarce that one can only please one player type.
    Last edited by Blackcurrant; 03-06-2012 at 01:58 AM.

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    People still play Rift?
    Quote Originally Posted by Tengenstein View Post
    just don't let them melee you up the bum.

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    This post mortem was horrible to the point of worthless, it told me nothing excpet that they have totally lost touch with reality if they think they did great work on this expansion. Don't get me wrong, there are some things I like a great deal about Cata, but on the whole this was not their best work product.

    Spine is far from an "epic" encounter, maybe if you had the camara angle that they show in the picture on the blog, it'd be a bit epic, but before the first plate comes off you can't see shit unless you swing the camera at an off angle - even then it's not an "epic" view. You can't tell the ass from the head, the only way you know he rolls is you see crap fly off him - you're might as well be staning on a reddish bridge with a blue back ground.

    Al Akir was just an annoying fight; I just love getting punished cause I'm actually standing where I'm supposed to be and some random sheet of ice spawns making it impossible to avoid another mechanic that comes hot on its tail; and the whole swim down, swim up crap was again a camera angle nightmare.

    I did like the platform fight on To4W and I thought the artwork was great.

    BoT and BWD were fun, I enjoyed them a great deal - I thought Ascendent Council, Cho'gall and Atramedes were fun fights. Firelands I thought was a fun challenging instance and the Ragnaros fight was a great end fight. The 25% nerf was just waaaayyy too much too fast.

    DS, I've said before, was put together with spit and bubble gum; Blackthorn is the only fight that is remotely interesting - lots to do. I also have this thing against 7/8 fights needing only one tank. Are there that many dps in the game that tanks and healers have to shorted on things to do?

    I agree that the original heroics were just too damaned hard for what the players had come to expect them to be. 15 min VP runs to get you geared for raiding. Blizzard's problem was that they established a paradigm in WoLK, then suddenly blew it out the window.

    I would have been more pleased if Mercer had just said they screwed the pooch on this expansion content-wise. They gave us less content and for the last "epic raid" they put out re-skined, recycled garbage to just be done with it.

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    @Theotherone, I agree with everything you wrote there, but I can't speak to any other raid but DS since I came back in 4.3 and haven't bothered.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tengenstein View Post
    just don't let them melee you up the bum.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dreador View Post
    People still play Rift?
    Thats my point, say what you want about that game but that studio's philosophy is that the only way they could compete in the MMO Market is to provide frequent updates, really great ones at that, new raids etc, not just nerfs or buffs that people will cry about.

    Then you got Blizzard the most wealthy gaming studio that takes over 6 months just to get a new raid out. And this is after subscriptions started to drop and they announced they will try to get content out quicker. That's just pathetic. This isn't just Cataclysm either after a lengthy period of Ulduar we start to wonder where Blizzard will send us next in the amazing vast winters of Northrend, deeper within the fabled Azjol Nerub? Or perhaps Zul'Drak for some more ol' classic Troll genocide....no..they gave us an Arena with 5 bosses that we could run 4 times a week for 4-5months (wasn't a quick way to stall for time I'm sure...).
    The way I see it I dont understand why I'm paying for this game if their going to come up short on content. If it was a Free to Play model I wouldn't care but Trion (Rift) feels that because they are a subscription based MMO it is their job to provide frequent quality content updates.

    Also I just feel like among some of the mistakes they made they should have simply known better with all their experience. I understand Cataclysm was too ambitious and stretched themselves too thin and therefore had to pay for it. But giving us recycled troll dungeons that would become the only 5 man content worth doing for another lengthy period? Like seriously? At least Halls of Reflection was just rounded into the random LFG and if you got it you got it.

    Panda's and Pokemon, who cares I'm looking forward to MoP in hopes to see how well they improve on their mistakes because besides new marketing strategies they never really seemed to attempt to picking the ball back up in Cataclysm in terms of content.
    Last edited by Kahmal; 03-06-2012 at 11:25 AM.

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    The thing I hated the most?

    How this guy talked about how "oh the options are limitless, we have really amazing ideas, I've never not been able to do something I wanted."

    ...

    ...

    ...

    REALLLY?!?!?

    The ideas coming out of your team are virtually UNLIMITED and SUPER AWESOME, and this bag of crap is what you pick? I'll grant T11 was good, and Firelands had its strong points... BUT... WHAT!?!?!?!

    Dragonsoul is the WORST raid in the history of WoW.

    That's right... I said it... the WORST tier. It is worse than ToC. The reason why it's worse than T9 is because the T9 boss fights in-and-of themselves weren't bad, it was the simple fact that you ended up doing ToC 4 times on 4 different difficulties and it was only 5 bosses for 6 months. The instance itself wasn't bad, it was the burnout.

    Dragonsoul is just awful. The only fight that I feel has even remotely interesting mechanics is yor'sahj. Hagara is kind of cool too, but the loot pinata known is morchokk was just dumb, zon'ozz should have been way better implemented, the 1 button guitar hero joke that is ultraxion made me want to stab myself, WHY DID THEY THINK ANOTHER GUNSHIP BATTLE WAS A GOOD IDEA, and the two deathwing fights could have been just... so much better. I just... urgh.

    I agree, this guy needed to come out and flat out admit "ya we f***ed up and we missed deadlines and we're obviously still trying to tweak with the balance between 10s and 25s."

    It seemed like all of this guy's favorite stuff, was the shit that was the MOST gimmicky. "hey *snarff* look at the cool trick I made this boss do guys, he even rolls over, and raiders can train him to play dead too! you know... just incase we run out of ideas and need to ressurect onyxia... AGAIN!"

    God damn, if this is more of the crap that's gonna be in MoP, then I'm glad I quit.
    [Today 09:38 AM] Reev: The older I get, the more I think those Greek philosophers were just annoying hipsters.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aggathon View Post
    Dragonsoul is the WORST raid in the history of WoW.
    Whoa...your over doing it there, ToC was a complete insult to our intelligence that we wouldn't think it was a place holder. I can at least appreciate Blizzard making an effort on what was clearly limited time both raids had reskinned bosses but I feel that ToC could have at least thrown in 3 more bosses...I mean its not like the art department was busy doing anything else but making an Arena.

    Surprisingly I really dont mind recycled models all that much I mean yea I prefer seeing epic models like Kologarn or Morrowgar but you get over it after you see them a couple times and its really all about the encounter (but yea it is a clear display of laziness).

    Dragon Soul wasn't their best but it did have some ambition, doing another gunship battle was fine cause the first one was a joke I expected the original ICC Gunship encounter to be really engaging, it was more of a spam fest. The one Dragon Soul is a great encounter and sadly as good as they get, but the following Deathwing encounters were at least ambitious. Spine of Deathwing didn't go as planned and they simply over did madness of Deathwing, i honestly woulda preferred to actually have to fight Deathwing and not his tentacles (dont know when he respecced Old God) taking on a dragon that size head on woulda been funner imo.

  11. #11
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    See, I loved ToGC because I was doing it when it was bleeding edge heroic25. Beasts was really fun to tank and organize in heroic, even though it was pretty much trivial after the first few weeks, Jaraxass sucked, but whatever. Champions was pretty fun, I really loved the concept and it required a lot of coordination and not derping until the first few died. I REALLY liked twins, my guild got US 67th without using the cheesy door strat. The real strat was actually really fun to execute. Loved it. And H-Anub25 to this day remains one of my favorite fights in the entire game. On any other difficulty the boss is a laughable, boring, snoozefest. But on H-25... DAMN that was a rush, especially going for realm first grand crusader.
    [Today 09:38 AM] Reev: The older I get, the more I think those Greek philosophers were just annoying hipsters.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aggathon View Post
    See, I loved ToGC because I was doing it when it was bleeding edge heroic25. Beasts was really fun to tank and organize in heroic, even though it was pretty much trivial after the first few weeks, Jaraxass sucked, but whatever. Champions was pretty fun, I really loved the concept and it required a lot of coordination and not derping until the first few died. I REALLY liked twins, my guild got US 67th without using the cheesy door strat. The real strat was actually really fun to execute. Loved it. And H-Anub25 to this day remains one of my favorite fights in the entire game. On any other difficulty the boss is a laughable, boring, snoozefest. But on H-25... DAMN that was a rush, especially going for realm first grand crusader.
    Meh, ToGC beast seemed more about how many Legendary Healing Maces you had to keep your tank from getting globaled, Jaraxass was lame, Champions was pretty fun (we abused FoK spec lol) but got annoying to do every week. Twin Valks would have been a great encounter if 75% of it wasn't literally spoon fed to you.

    Either way I see no excuse for it having only 5 bosses...I mean SSC had more then that and it shared a Tier with Tempest Keep. The Art Team didn't design new models or a complex citadel so....

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    BUT IT WAS REALLY 20 BOSSES BECAUSE YOU COULD DO IT FOR TIMES







    </sarcasm>


    I agree, again I think TOGC was better because the individual encounters were better. The fact that it only had 5 bosses and lasted 6 months is what made it bad. The content in a vacuum wasn't. In Dragonsoul, the content in a vacuum is just awful.
    [Today 09:38 AM] Reev: The older I get, the more I think those Greek philosophers were just annoying hipsters.
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    I miss BC. We were just talking about that in DS tonight. I miss BC and I also miss trash mobs. I don't see the point of the trash in DS, it's a joke.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tengenstein View Post
    just don't let them melee you up the bum.

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    I like trash packs to be interesting, rather than numerous. I think TBC's content erred on the latter rather than the former, but most of the time it didn't feel too onerous.

    ToC and DS stand out for me as raids where Blizzard tried to do something different, but didn't get the execution of it quite right. Unfortunately in the "noise" around these raids, I fear Blizz might get the signal that they did everything wrong rather than "right idea, wrong execution."

    Unless, ofc, the majority of the playerbase is so tediously unimaginative as to want nothing more than all raids to be variations on the theme of "storm the bad guys castle/palace/cave/whatever, kill lieutanents in order, fight boss, win." There's only so many times you can do this (approximately once by my reckoning) before the concept looks ridiculously hackneyed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Libellus View Post

    ToC and DS stand out for me as raids where Blizzard tried to do something different
    More like had to do something different to get it out fast enough lol.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kahmal View Post
    More like had to do something different to get it out fast enough lol.
    I disagree. The speed with which something is produced, is no guarantee of quality. Just because blizz spend ages working on another hackneyed variant of "enter bad guy's lair, fight sub bosses, then boss" doesn't make it good or original. Hell, even if the fights are good (as they were in T11) it hardly makes for "good" content, when the setting is so half arsed (as they were in T11). I enjoyed the fights in T11, but did spend most of the time wondering honestly what this toss was all about.

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    As offensively worthless as the Dungeon/Raid post-mortem was (and it was), Ghostcrawler's Cataclysm Post Mortem seems a much more balanced and realistic view of the problems that they created for themselves in cata.

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    GC's Post Mortem is much more of a true post mortem than the fluff piece from Mercer. I can't disagree with any of his observations, except, I think in designing the original Cata heroics they listened to a vocal minority of official forums mouth breathers and got blind sided. GC is a pretty level headed guy and I think he knows what he's doing. If Cata delivers what he claims they want it to, it will be a lot of fun.

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    No, there's a LOT of people that didn't like the difficulty of the Cata heroics, he's right. I even knew very good players that finished the dungeons when they first came out, but with such little gear, it took them an hour+ for some instances, defeating the purpose of "running a heroic over lunch" type of thing.

    It is true, a lot of people wanted really easy grindy heroics to farm up valor gear (welfare gear as it used to be, bu quickly and easily. Hell, even I loved being able to blow through a heroic in 15 minutes. I used to join an LFD and go "keep up I'm not stopping" and just plow through it.

    Honestly, GCs response and his honesty about what worked and what didn't, and talking about challenge modes etc. was the first twinge of anything I've seen from them that made me think "okay, that actually sounds cool, I might actually try MoP"
    [Today 09:38 AM] Reev: The older I get, the more I think those Greek philosophers were just annoying hipsters.
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