I'm not sure if WoW could introduce real progression-oriented 5-man content without turning it into a "mandatory" extracurricular activity for raiders, which might be really frustrating for some people. Fundamentally, it's hard for WoW to support parallel gear progression paths at endgame. (Of course we have PvP and PvE paths already, but they've taken a long time to figure out how to make that work and it's still far from perfect.)
The best precedent I can think of is the lower-tier raids in classic and BC (ZG, AQ20, and ZA), which dropped lower-tier gear than current raids. Those worked pretty well in their day, but back then it was more common and more okay to be behind the raiding vanguard. If they were to introduce a Karazhan-5 in patch 5.3 which dropped 496 gear and was tuned for ~485 (so very easy for active tier 15 raiders, very difficult for fresh 90s, about right for people who've done some amount of LFR), I don't know if it would be popular.
There was a spellpower fist weapon in Naxx 25.
It was weird, and even the people who could equip it weren't particularly interested.
Strength polearms are not in the same boat as spell polearms or str/spell fists in terms of only being usable by a few specs. Every strength class is able to equip polearms already, which means that they would be no more restricted than 2h swords, axes or maces. Ok, I guess they'd be slightly more restricted in that TG-Fury warriors wouldn't be able to use polearms, but they'd still be usable by arms warriors, ret pallies, and any 2h DK spec, and honestly I think fury already has enough options with being able to choose between 2h and 1h that it wouldn't be the end of the world if there was a polearm every now and then that they couldn't use.
This is honestly why I still think Blizzard should just get rid of the idea of str and agility on weapons and just put attack power on weapons (similar to how spell power still exists only on caster weapons). This would create a lot more freedom and versatility between weapon choices especially for some of the niche weapon options that tend to be left out due to these types of limitations. For example Warriors could get access to fists without blizzard having to make fists that ONLY warriors can use, combat rogues could get access to 1h swords more often, the plate classes would be able to "share" polearms with druids and monks, etc. It would have the potential downside of creating a lot more competition or drama over weapons, but honestly it probably wouldn't be any more competition than a 25man raid has over a caster staff (ie making melee weapons apply to a larger portion of the raid's melee players wouldn't be any worse than caster weapons already applying to the majority of the raid's casters).
They could just put the same gear level in the "progression" 5-mans as in LFR. Just make sure that the time investment to get the LFR level gear is the same as LFR. The high end raiders will feel compelled to run both LFR and "Progression" 5-mans but only for the first couple of weeks until they start rolling in normal mode gear. Then after that they won't need LFR level gear for any other tiers in the expansion, so it is no longer something that anyone would worry about.
Originally Posted by Marco
Maybe I misunderstood, but I think he is talking about progression, not "progression", therefore the invested time in this dungeons will be higher than in LFR, because to get loot from this dungeons you need to fail a bunch of times before achieve success. Is 5 man raiding and I agree that in WoW where anything that isn't gear related doesn't hold any value for the players make it very hard to create an alternative path of progression. If somehow they could disable the advantages of that gear in raids and the raid gear in this dungeons maybe, like PVP Power is disabled for healers in Raid instances.
Originally Posted by wormspeaker
In that case is more about: is making epic dungeons a better invest of development time than raiding content?; because this is where you have to take time to make this. With the *success* of LFR I doubt it, but Blizzard tries many weird things.
Is LFR really a success?
I really only run them for the gear (and occasionally for the valor, if friends want to run an LFR I haven't ran yet). The way they can be steamrolled like Pandaria HCs can make me lose all interest in the LFR system.
I have some friends who, due to kids and what not, had to step down from Raiding several evenings a week to be casual player, and at first LFR seemed to be their solution. But there's really no challenge. People come there to farm the loot and that's it.
I had a lot more fun setting up pugs during Vanilla/TBC/WotLK and do the real stuff. If you organize them well, you can still clear the place.
Could be just me, though. Are there people that actually enjoy LFR for what it is?
As for Progression 5 man gearing, I think the most decent solution is to do it the same as they did 10 vs 25 during WotLK. Have Progression 5 man instances drop the same items as LFR (not just the same ilvl, but the exact same item, so items don't suddenly become interesting to raiders due to different itemization), and Progression 5 man heroics drop the same items as Normal raids.
If you make the ilvl identical, then Raiders are forced to "farm" progression 5 mans for gear. If you make the ilvl more than one step lower, then you either have to tune the instances so low that people in raid gear will cruise control through, or force people that want to do the progression instances to run raids to get the required gear (like in WotLK where 10manners were required to pug 25 mans to get the gear for 10 man heroics).
Alternatively you make it share a resource cap with something. For example, have each gold bag in LFR also give you 80 Triumph points, and have 5 man progression bosses drop those Triumph points, but like 200 per boss. Then cap the Triumph points at 1000 per week and let people buy LFR gear for around 2500 Triumph points per week, so players can choose if they run LFR or Progression 5 mans for Triumph points, and Raiders that aren't interested in the progression 5 mans don't need to do anything extra.
You could also (instead or in addition to the above idea) up the Greater Charms in progression 5 mans to greatly increase the chance of loot (perhaps so much as 100% even), but keep it at LFR loot. Raiders won't spend their Greater Charms there, because they can use it at a chance to get higher ilvl loot, but people that only do LFR or progression 5 mans could use their Greater Charms to get their loot. Perhaps have the bosses drop some lesser charms, so these players aren't required to farm the full 90 lesser charms a week for their only chance at loot.
Last edited by Thels; 01-04-2013 at 11:57 AM.
Yes, you said yourself.
Originally Posted by Thels
What I was trying to imply with the ** around success, is exactly that is a success in their metrics, not in all possible means of interpretation of success; there is a lot that you can't measure, but what you can is what people is doing, how much are they doing it, what are they getting from doing it (which helps to measure why they are doing it).
Originally Posted by Thels
In that regard, when you can give content to both casuals and hardcore raiders with the same art-assets, my god, really, really is groundbreaking for Blizzard, it may be the reason we will have a 5.2 this fast, the combination of this with scenarios (which is copy-paste assets + scripted event) a powerful "content tool" that helps the story of the game develops, give some reward so people actually do them (even if people is bad at math and many skip the 40VPx15 mins daily while in LFR queue for terrace which means 40 freetime VP). This enhances the *success* label of LFR, because now the perception of *fresh* content is better just because of some tweaks in the development process and this tool.
The most I think about it, most I get that Blizzard can rotate out dungeons in every non-expansion patch from now on, if the BC-esque progression via LFR can hold, which is a very hard mathematical model to solve.
About your progression model, then the patch is like this:
1. Patch lands
2. Group with guildes
3. Farm dungeons until we don't need any more gear.
4. Skip any other alternative gear process.
5. Overgear Normal raids (why you want to do normal anyway?)
6.a) Top100 Guid: Overgear heroic because we usually do this in blues.
6.b) Everybody else: ragequit at first heroic boss because even if we are geared we don't really have the skill and we are dying at 95% boss HP. We call this raid tier done.
7. Complain at forums because there is no more content.
Long story short, what you want is a way to gear faster even if you think that it is not and if you gather the info from Blizzard that is not in the table of any discussion. The gear is what keep the game going they need it to last.
Yeah, I guess in that regard, you could call LFR a success. It gives people that raid something more to do.
If I wasn't raiding, I wouldn't bother with LFR. Sure, I would run it once, but then that's it. Gearing up is not an end goal, despite how satisfying it might be. It's something you do to help you down later bosses. I do LFR to slightly increase my chances during raiding.
What I was thinking of LFR before I experienced it myself, was that it would be something challenging. Perhaps slightly less challenging because your working with people you never met, and it might be a tad unorganized. Something you could queue in on times that suited you, instead of being fixed to certain periods during the week.
Instead we get this stuff that's easier than the normal dungeons were at levels 86-89. LFR ain't in the least exciting. It's just one more way to get gear.
You misunderstood the idea about progression dungeons. They are meant to be like 5 man raids, not something you plow your way through instantly. Naturally, they would be on a weekly lockout.
And if you read my suggestions, it would give nothing that LFR wouldn't also give, so Raiders, who currently run LFR, would either still run LFR or run that, and not come out the wiser. The emblems might need some toying with to balance out properly.
I was mostly toying with the idea of how to make progression dungeons work (which obviously would lead to extra loot problems), not looking for yet another way to earn loot.
Alternatively, they could scale down the ilvl a lot, and provide an extra free bonus stat that doesn't work in Raids, Challenge modes, Arenas or RBGs.
I love the idea of running hard 5-mans instead of LFR! Make them mechanics centric, so that it doesn't punish you for running in blues, but its still hard in epics because you have to know the fight well. I think the smaller group size would let you run less forgiving mechanics because its easy to get people together to keep trying at it in order to learn the fights. THat would make it even more satisfying when they are on "Farm" too.
First week a LFR loot is better than anything else, hardcore raiders want this gear no matter what, even if it is only one piece per boss, if lets say 5 dungeons have 3 bosses, those are 15 LFR pieces before the race start, no freaking hardcore raider is going to skip that, if you put a gating, then it depends on the time, we are almost 4 months in expansion now, but remember how it was during the first week/month, any item level increase is valuable. One of the limitations of raiding is that you can't login at the same time with other 24/10 people to do it, with 5 man raiding this requirement gets lost, a hardcore raiding guild is going to exploit this loot, when the first group of 5 get the dungeon the give the strat to their guildies to get more loot. It is more loot, that is how people play the game.
Originally Posted by Thels
I having toying with something similar too, but the idea of a personal progression, which right now in my mind is either quality of life, cosmetic improvements or what what you suggest: gear that isn't effective in the competitive spectrum of the game.
About the comment from Ithuriol. WoW is about pushing your buttons to get more numbers, this by itself isn't that hard, but following mechanics by itself isn't either (and isn't really wow, is a puzzle game), is doing both at the same time what means to beat bosses. So what a boss need to ask for players is perform your main role while not dying. But in order to do this you need DPS/healing checks, so you need to make bosses for a certain item level (which translate to how much damage/healing we can do as a team). Long story short you cannot have a fight that is challenging for blues and for epics at the same time in WoW without automatic scaling boss HP and damage based on the teams item level and Lore has explained why this is a bad idea in this game (no sense of progression if the fight is harder every time I get loot from it, why do I want the loot in that case?, what if the loot is for healing only but the HP increased?).
I didn't intend the suggestion as "yet another way to increase gearing" for those that look at "progression" 5 mans as just a way to find gear, but I do admit that side effect would be there, hence I proposed a few options to prevent that. The only real solution is having it provide something that could've been gotten elsewhere as well, but doesn't stack.
As I said, one way of doing it is by putting it on a currency that's also available in LFR, and is on a weekly cap, so that people that clear LFR have nothing to gain. (Some raiders might want to do the progression 5 man instead of LFR because it's a more interesting way to get to the weekly cap, but that's fine.)
Another way is to make the loot depending on Lucky Charms, and make it a 100% drop chance when using one. Since the ilvl is still lower than in normal raids, few raiders would burn their Lucky Charms there if they had a chance to get a much more valuable item in the raid, considering they would replace the 5 man drop quickly enough.
Finally, they could do it like arena gear. Provide gear of much lower ilvl (For example, 463 gear), but provide extra stats on them that don't work in Normal Raids/Heroic Raids/Battlegrounds/Arenas.