Proposed 3.2 gear token changes

v3.1

More on my current ‘project’, the proposed changes to gear tokens in 3.2.  Previously, after first learning of the change I wrote my knee jerk reaction to them.  My reaction was quite similar to a number of others if you read the comments in the wow.com link.

This change is pretty significant.  The first thing I noticed when coming to WoW is how gear-centric it is.  A large chunk of the game is all about getting better loot for whatever reason.  So any significant change to gearing concepts is going to have ramifications and attract the interest of many players.


Now i’ve had a bit more thought about it, and read a large number of other peoples opinions on it I thought I might write about it.

Firsly let me say I have no issue with other people having good gear.  I never see another player and have thoughts like, “that bastard doesn’t deserve that because…” Good gear for all I say! 🙂  However where it does effect me is my incentive to play.

Why am I playing WoW?  I enjoy the challenge of hard content, I like playing with friends and I like ‘advancing my toons’ along the journey towards the ultimate end point of WoW (whatever that may be).  Part of the journey is accumulating good gear to allow me to … what?  Get even better gear?  Get achievements? Continue raiding with friends?  So the question for is, is there still an incentive for me to raid for a some gear (less than before but still some (a lot?)) and achievements?

Some ideas/thoughts about this change:

  • Reduces difficulty for anyone to raid at top tier as they can easily get some top tier gear.
  • Reduces incentive to raid, even at the top tier, except for those interested in achievements.  i.e. gear incentive partially removed.
  • The mere rumour of this change is causing issues within some raiding guilds as players start to divide along “I mainly raid for gear” and “I mainly raid for achievements” lines (I know many also raid for “the fun of it”, no change there).
  • This change will give more players the gear to raid in the higher tier content.  It will not grant them the skill/experience to do so.  Despite its nerfs, Ulduar is harder than Naxx (so far).
  • Many play to have fun and one way they have fun is by excelling at something.  Part of this excelling at something is having both the skill and the tools to do something well.  What happens when you level the playing field for gear?
  • Does this emblems change significantly level the playing field?  There is only so much tier gear you can buy with emblems. (I can feel a, “How to gear your 80 with emblems” post coming on.)
  • Is raiding with a reduced gear incentive like doing a RL job you enjoy but for little pay?  Probably not.
  • I’ve put significant time into other games (e.g. Guildwars) where gear has very little effect on you ability to fulfil your role. In that game I did high end content for personal satisfaction and to play with friends.  So is the issue the change itself?  Am I resisting this change because its natural to resist change?
  • If gear becomes less important why would I bother running heroics for emblems?  I’ve seen them all and ‘beaten’ them all.  I suppose I could go for the achievements.  Will this change become self defeating from the point-of-view of getting more people into heroics?
  • Is there even a problem with getting enough players into heroics?  The must be if Blizzard says so I guess.  I’ve never really had an issue getting into them.
  • Will epics you can purchase with tokens become socially less acceptable than epics won by good honest raiding?

Part of me is disappointed by the change.  Probably because there is a part of my toons identity which will die with this change.  Turkelife is a tier 8 geared toon.  She’s not some fresh 80 who just got off the quest train (<insert elitist sneer here>).  Her gear proclaims her as having done stuff, it has a kind of history or significance to it, to those that look at it.  I guess this must be similar to how some of the tier 6 raiders must have felt just about the time the started raiding in Wrath.  All the hundreds of hours of play time and skil l which was expressed in their tier 6 gear was about to be erased and forgotten by ‘the server’.  Hmm, I guess I’ll survive, but it will take a bit for the pain to fade. 😦

So, on rethink, i’m ok with this change. 🙂  It is a significant change to the game, but experience tells me its not actually the end of the world. WoW where gear is less important, is still going to be worth playing.

Gobble gobble.

Edit: Honor’ Code has a similar thought process going on.

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5 Responses to Proposed 3.2 gear token changes

  1. feebis says:

    I think one important thing to note is that these changes are not coming out today or tomorrow but in the next content patch. By then (presumably), people will have been raiding ulduar for 6 mothns and will be starting to get sick of the place. This change opens up other options for gear, so that you’re not stuck in an old instance so that you may gain acceptable gear for the new instance. I guess I just feel that players should fail based on a lack of skill rather than a lack of gear. A new player no matter how skilled they may be can find it extremely tough to gear up to an acceptable level.

    This patch will deliver a new tier of content and gear and I assume that this will provide enough incentive to keep most players going.

    My 2 cents…

  2. leneliesvoice says:

    I think it is actually more akin to the feeling people had with the badges of Justice and sunwell. What you mean you can get better gear to take you into BT from a vendor?!?!

    Overall I think it is able gearing your alts. When I look at the raiding organization I am in there are very few Naxx being run to help gear alts. Also very few people will run heroics unless it is the daily. I think this is incentive to continue using this content.

  3. This is a good and bad change for those who strive to work the hardest for the best loot.

    However.

    While the badge change allows some folks to grab gear that some people get, we can’t forget that there are many other pieces you can’t grab without actually going into those instances. Also, this will maybe force people to look at achievements instead of gear in order to make some sort of assessment for “smarts”. Top tier gear makes you look good, but without the achievements, it’ll be super obvious.

    Rock on, Bob!

  4. Abi says:

    I think this is both good at bad, it just depends on how you look at it. Outside of maybe the 2 tier 8 pieces you can purchase, nothing you can buy with Conquest badges is BIS for my class. I’m not sure if that’s the same with other classes. This might be good if someone in your guild has to swap mains to fill guild needs (i.e. me having to swap from priest to warlock or maybe warrior tank or moonkin in the future) it would be much easier to gear them up aside from carrying them through naxx. Run 7 or 8 heroics a day, profit, repeat.

    It’s the Sunwell all over again though. People were able to farm Kara and heroics for badges to acquire T5-T6 level gear and sometimes completely bypass that level of raiding to get right in to BT and Sunwell.

    I see it as another way of making the game more marketable to casual players but those people will always be just that.. casual players. Having a couple of pieces of conquest loot won’t make them play anymore and earn raid spots.

    On the other end of things, I look forward to gearing my future 80’s much much easier =X

    /selfish

  5. BobTurkey says:

    Yeah i’ve pretty much come full circle now. I think this change is pretty good.

    One, this change won’t land for a few months I imagine, so raiders will generally be further along than they currently are.

    Two, this will make it easier to gear alts and new players, which is a good thing.

    In hindsight something like this is inevitable to allow access to the top couple of tiers of raiding.

    Gobble gobble.

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