Weekly Wrap-Up: Sparkle Pony Distraction
There has been a lot of buzz in the WOW community lately about the class change previews that Blizzard has posted in the forums. Mages are getting Heroism/Bloodlust. Resto druids are losing their tree form. Priests are getting some strange ability that allows them to drag a DPS’s sorry ass out of the fire, or grief someone of their own faction in a BG. The initial shocks of Cataclysm are certainly beginning.
I’ve compiled a small list of some of the most entertaining/thought provoking blog posts and news of the past week. There were a ton of posts, and I have to admit that I skimmed through a lot this week rather than reading them all.
Kae from Dreambound Druid commented on the Druid Class Change Preview. The commentary is insightful, and the stick figure drawings are adorable and hilarious.
Pewter from the ‘Mental Shaman (who I need to add to my blogroll) asks us to stop QQing over losing unique abilities. Classes evolve over time and identities and niches change. I agree that we need to step back and remind ourselves that single ability (Heroism/Bloodlust anyone?) does not make up the backbone of our class identity. This is not to say that homogenization is a good thing, but we shouldn’t automatically assume that Blizzard is trying to destroy our class.
I have a strange fascination with reading about guild leadership and structure. Over at the Murloc Parliament there was a post about guild democracy with a bit of Roman History thrown in. I am a closet Roman History geek, so I really connected with this one.
WOW.com’s Allison Roberts gave us a very intelligent post about Blizzard’s design goals past and present, and specifically the Tree of Life changes. It’s difficult to look at this issue without getting emotional. I love that druids have forms for all specs – it is a huge bit of flavor that is highly valued by many druid players. Yes, the concept of Tree form has a lot of flaws from a gameplay standpoint – but taking something away that has many fond memories attached is going to get people very riled up. The hardcore raiders or PVPers aren’t going to care so much – they care about class mechanics. The casuals and RPers on the other hand care a lot about flavor and visuals. The idea of never getting to see the Tree cower or dance again makes my heart ache. It really stings that the cat and bear models got updated (and are adorable), but Trees are going to lose their special form. I’m glad my Druid is going to be a Worgen, because the night elf model makes me cringe. I can only hope that Blizzard will surprise us with some amazing way to please everyone while sticking to their design goal.
The Celestial Steed mount went on sale last week (as well as the annoying XT pet). There was the usual panicked QQ about RMT and how Blizzard is going to start selling Epics in their store next. I have to say, this mount is quite beautiful, but I am struggling with myself at the thought of spending $25 on a virtual item. I would love to have my lowbies ride a beautiful Star Pony rather than some ugly Elekk, and it would make a fine addition to Kaelynn’s mount collection. I understand that Blizzard is trying to capitalize on their player base and earn some additional money, and I don’t begrudge them for it. That mount must have made them a ton of cash. I don’t think they are going to start selling game-changing items unless their philosophy about the game drastically changes. I think its interesting that they released the Sparkle Pony now in the midst of all this other news. It’s almost like a distraction… “QQ Tree of Life, QQ Mage heroism… oh wait… a pony?”
Yet another developer Twitter Chat occurred on Friday, giving us even more to dissect. I’m pleased that they are planning on giving us a 310% upgrade for all flying mounts – my collection is large and I want to be able to see them all without sacrificing mount speed. They gave also gave me a little hope that Resto druids aren’t getting shafted in Cataclysm – they are obviously thinking hard about spells and utility. Yay for Tranquility going raid-wide again!
In the Game and Beyond
It was another week where I didn’t play WOW a ton. We’ve been on a huge Veronica Mars kick – it’s quite addicting.
I did finish up Loremaster this week, so I suppose that is a huge accomplishment. I’m proudly displaying my Loremaster title for a few weeks before going back to the Seeker (which reminds me of one of my favorite book series).
I didn’t raid on Friday, as we went out of town for a wedding. The guild cleared one more boss into ICC, so we are now 6/12, woot! I still can’t believe we’re really raiding.
On Tuesday I ordered a new laptop – a shiny new model Macbook Pro. I had a huge post drafted about my rationalizations for purchasing it, but really it isn’t that interesting. Suffice to say, I am an Apple fangirl and I am obsessed with having new technology. It will be delivered on Wednesday, and I am feeling incredibly impatient. I’m not looking forward to download WOW again, and setting up my UI again, but it will be worth it to play on a machine that can show Azeroth in all its true glory. Jardal gets my current 4-year old Macbook Pro, since his Macbook runs WOW quite terribly. Integrated graphics cards ftl.