Sunday, March 1, 2009

Slowing it down

There is a huge excitement at the moment about the various features and changes that will come to World of Warcraft with the patch 3.1. Personally I think that is a bad sign: People are more excited about what they will have than about what they have. Don't get me wrong, I like many of the things I hear about the patch. But I'll wait until the patch is actually here, and I guess that will still take around two months. And I'm not going to report too much about various announced or seen-on-PTR class changes, like the big druid nerf: Over the coming week many of the things that are in the patch notes or on the PTR now will still change, and nobody knows how the final version will look like.

So personally I decided to slow down playing World of Warcraft a bit. Leveling the third character to 80 is still fun, but not quite as much as the first two, because the third one necessarily has to repeat quests I already did. And of course leveling the low-level druid is full of repeats. My raiding priest practically doesn't get any upgrades any more on Naxx10, and we're still having problems getting 25 people for Naxx25 together regularly. So I think I'll reduce raiding to twice per week, unless the recent tank shortage repeats itself and I can go raiding with my warrior. I don't mind going raiding with my priest even if I don't get any loot any more, but only if it helps other guild mates. And at the skill / gear level we are now, our 10-man Naxxramas raids would frankly be better off if we just took 2 healers and one more dps.

Another reason I'd like to slow down with WoW a bit is that there are so many other great games I'd like to play some more. Empire: Total War is coming out, and I still have Mass Effect, Call of Duty 4, King's Bounty, and Fallout 3 unplayed on my shelf. I also want to have a closer look at some Free2Try MMO's, like Chronicles of Spellborn, Runes of Magic, Atlantica Online, and Bounty Bay Online. Or maybe revisit some old favorites like Puzzle Pirates or A Tale in the Desert. So much to do, so little time! :)

I decided against taking a complete break from WoW. I'm still having fun. And the incentive structure of WoW favors a slowdown (which implies continuing to pay monthly fees) over a clean break: I can gain a lot of reputation and gold by just doing a few selected daily quests and AH deals every day, and using my long-cooldown crafting recipes. So I'll play a bit of WoW every day, and then play a bit something else. Probably the healthier option anyway. At least until patch 3.1 comes out. ;)

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