Monday, February 14, 2011

My Cataclysm raid plans

I don't have any.

Let me explain my view of how raiding has changed with an analogy: As a healer, raiding in Vanilla was like solving a Rubik's Cube. You had to *think* to succeed, and you had to think fast.

Raiding got faster in Burning Crusade. By the time Wrath of the Lich King arrived, the Rubik's Cube had become much simpler.Only now you had to solve that 2x2 Rubik's Cube while racing downhill on a skateboard through a complicated obstacle course. Thus the actual healing was extremely easy, and all the problem was to do it while constantly having to move and to react, jump through hoops, keep a distance of exactly 8.7 yards to all your neighbors, while keeping hopping on one leg.

Cataclysm promised to bring the 3x3 Rubik's Cube back for healing, and to a certain extent they did. I am having fun in dungeons because I have a meaningful choice what spells to cast, how to preserve mana, and when to blow my emergency healing. Unfortunately they didn't remove the skateboard downhill obstacle course. I am still supposed to be constantly moving in many heroics encounters and all raid encounters, and keeping prescribed scripted distances not just from various bad stuff but also from everybody else in the raid. Raiding still is mainly Super Mario Simon Says. It is now "harder", but only because you need to keep up the movement and simultaneously make meaningful choices about what spells to cast. The main difficulty is still the jumping around, and not the tactical choices. The main raid gameplay is still wiping with the same group of people until everybody knows all the scripted moves of that specific encounter; and then move to the next encounter where you wipe again until you have all the moves for that encounter in your muscle memory.

Sorry, but that isn't my sort of game. I don't disrespect the kind of people who like highspeed skateboard obstacle courses, but I just want to solve complicated Rubik's Cubes. I have nothing against having to react a few times during a fight to some boss special ability, at a Molten Core kind of level for example, but once the reacting and moving becomes practically the whole game, I'm simply not interested any more. I am looking for a tactical dungeon strategy game, not an action arcade dungeon jump-and-run.

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