Saturday, May 2, 2009

Children's Week & Hearthstones

The title of this post is to reflect that I'm going to bring up two very different subjects, but they actually have something incommon (except for both being part of WoW), so read along and you'll see where it'll lead ya!
First of all, Children's Week is upon us. One might think it odd that I bring this up and not any other world event. Well the simple reason is that I don't care for the world events much, and I don't think I have done any of the achis included, except for the Winterveil one where you get to open presents! But there is something special about Children's Week and you've surely heard about it alot already - School of Hard Knocks achi. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not planning to do this achi either (I am however planning to get the third children's week companion for the "Nanny" achi) but I'm still affected since Love do all these achievements. When something bothers him, he makes sure I know about it. And when something bothers him extra much I might take an extra look at it to form my own opinion - is he being oversensitive or is there something really bothersome about what he is doing?
And for this achievement I concluded that he actually has some reason to QQ. The real cry isn't really from him tho, it's on the forums all over the internet and people state different reason for this achi having to be one of the worst so far. Some say they, as pve'rs, shouldn't have to do pvp-things for an achievement or that they don't stand a fair chance due to their lack of pvp-skill and gear.
I don't agree with this. The achievement being about pvp isn't what bothers me about it. Remember the Love Fool meta achi? You had to get some candies from a bag and it was all about luck. You could farm those bag the entire event through and still not get it. Blizzard said they wanted to remove the luck factor from the achievements and removed that candy-achievement from the meta-achievement requirements. And now they implement this. Some people on the forums say "oh it was so easy, I got it on my third try" and some say "I have done this for hours and still not completed it". No one has a good idea on how to accomplish it, even the "guide" at only says "run and take the flag". Wow, I don't think anyone would've thought of that.
Yes, you only need to go get the flag, and it sounds simple enough. But everyone else doing the achi also "only needs to take it" and they're facing a bunch of people who think they're getting free HK's from players who're not even there to pvp. Whether you're gonna be the one getting the flag or not is not due to skill, but luck. The skill involved disappears in so many luck factors that they won't do much difference.
And all the pvpers get cranky because no one cares about defending bases in the BG's anymore and "noob!" is thrown all around for no benefit. Who is supposed to enjoy this achi? It is born from bad planning and ruins gameplay.

So where does the hearthstone fit into all this?
Well, some patches ago Blizzard decided to fix the "ghetto hsing" that people were doing. People went haywire since alot of game content takes place in totally different areas and travelling hither and dither is not what people are paying for. So Blizzard agreed to lower the cooldown on the HS from 60 min to 30 min and people were a little happier. But I thought to myself, why do Hearthstones even have cooldowns? It can only take you to one designated place in the world anyway, how imba can it be? Ghostcrawler said we should be happy with 30 min, but why? Why can't we have no cd? Would it make the game too simple? Would it make some aspects too easy? The only good reason I could see was that Blizzard simply don't want things to be time effective. We would be able to move "too fast" through the world if we could HS at any time. Much travel time aka wasted money for the players aka gained money for Blizzard would be gone. Think about it? This game might not cost much per hour, but how many of them hours have you spent not doing anything but trying to get from place A to B and back again?

Both these things stand to show that Blizzard often and in ways more obvious than other game developers actively work against the players. The time sink-holes in this game are sometimes so obvious it makes me laugh. Some are optional, like grinding exalted with some faction, but most aren't.

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