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Time truly is a flat circle: Friedrich Nietzsche was right, and the Christian Church is one of many institutions to blame for the belief in cyclical time-frames falling into disrepute. You only have to look at how we’re yet again fighting demons as Legion approaches to grasp that, like it or not, you never get a happy ending in a world where everything gets recycled, and where two sides are always the default.

Everybody is pushing you, day in and day out, to accept that you’re either Horde or Alliance, and if you’re not? The factions are critical, or you can’t have winners. You need two sides or there’s nothing to balance. My first question when I find out someone plays Warcraft is to ask about their class, Mr Holinka, not their affiliation (for the record.) One could argue this is allowing an interest in PvP to colour a world view, just as others allow class balance or raiding/casual outlook to do the same. None of them are right or correct, but all of them happen, over and over again, and will continue to do so until players grasp that they are the ones who cause their own woes, engineering a path to demise for themselves. It has happened with the concept of ‘Class Fantasy’ too: I had a mild Twitter rant this morning about the state of Hunters, and I’m not going to continue that here, save to mention that when you’re designing a product, the First Generation iteration is normally buggy as fuck and largely unpopular.

This then gives your product longevity as you spend the next X years using brand loyalty as the means to keep people interested whilst you try to fix a problem, that only existed to begin with because new employees had to tinker to place their individual stamp on proceedings. But I digress from my point, which this morning is the understanding that with (counts fingers) six days to go until Legion, you have better things to worry about than Nietzsche being right and the timing of key design and feedback decisions. You should be prepping for Legion, unless (like my Husband) you get that there’s no point in that either. You were done months ago. There’s no stress or concern when you’re aware your iLevel won’t get any higher, and you get the rotation changes. Achievement points matter not one jot. For you, it’s all about turning up on Tuesday and doing the work again.

He is a reminder that players like me cause all of their own problems to begin with.

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It is the extremes that colour the water for everybody else: these glasses aren’t just half full or empty: the lighting means they look the same but the truth is they’re not. Together they make a whole glass and what’s the problem? Maybe if I stopped looking for a reason to be so fucking critical and just drank the water? It is a symptom of the me-centric society we now inhabit that everyone, from the Senior Designers downwards, need to make it about them for this to be relevant. Of course it makes sense, but when you’re designing for millions and not a handful? Then there’s a problem. When the player base continue to self-perpetuate the fallacy, things only get worse. There is no clear distinction between your formless ranting about how woeful these new specs or abilities are and the reiteration of the designers that they’re simply trying to ‘create solid class fantasy.’ Where does one argument begin and end? Why must there be an insistence that ‘right’ is the most popular spec?

Holinka didn’t ruin PvP, players did by insisting it was broken. Celestalon didn’t destroy Hunter utility, he just made the three specs separate and distinct as players asked him to. Activision Blizzard haven’t done anything for over a decade except cater to those who tell them that all this shit matters: players who are planning to stay up all night and level to make other players feel inadequate that they can’t? Well, clearly that’s the non-committed scrubs at fault for not having their priorities straight. You only have to take a simple step back and listen to the stupidity, narrow-mindedness and pure entitled wankstainery on any given day to understand that yes, I’m absolutely to blame the moment I jump on a bandwagon and decry a design decision. I’m making things worse by promoting organisation and obsession with detail. I’m utterly at fault for making this game as much of a cesspit as the next person because when enough payers decide there’s an issue, one can magically appear out of fucking nowhere as if by magic.

A while back, someone suggested I’d catch more flies with honey than I ever will with vinegar, when it comes to how I approach making people care and listen. I often wonder whether the point of Community here is to even consider the quality of insect being attracted: just as long as everyone gets to eat, drink and max level, what else really matters for Activison Blizzard, and people like me who ultimately earn a wage from a carriage on the gravy train? When there are so many disparate ways to ‘have fun’ with an MMO, should you even bother with the process of definition or segregation? Just let everyone exist and as long as everybody hands over the cash, it is a good day in the neighbourhood. I know how hard the guys who design the games work, and how my friends crave to be a part of this. I’m ‘watching’ one right now drive across the USA to start a job in Irvine, and when you can inspire those levels of aspiration? That’s never a bad thing. So, really, however much you want to bash Activision Blizzard for their timing, design choices or ability to keep making this a faction war? It’s never going to stick. They do a fucking unbelievable task, and you pay them. I tried to pay them earlier for a US account but my bank considered the amount of money that’s come off my credit card to them as fraudulent, and declined the transaction.

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I am to blame for my own woes. I will be, over and over again. If I want real and effective change? I should stop playing the game, and find something better to do with my time. Activison Blizzard know what they’re doing. I should be like my husband who did the work months ago, and will appear Tuesday evening and ask me to give him a 10 minute primer on how it all works. That’s the way to approach change, not spending months and years worrying and fiddling and obsessing about pixels. Mr Alt has it right, because for him time’s rotation is of little relevance.

What matters in the end is long-term happiness.

4 thoughts on “Cough Cough

  1. I know there is not a hope in hell this will ever get posted, but you should really examine your mental state. Seems like every other post is you launching into a spit-foam screaming tirade at the community because they dare to criticize Holy Blizzard. There is always the same tired message, in screaming caps: IF YOU DONT LIKE IT, QUIT PLAYING, YOU WANKERS!! As if anyone who does not love the exact same parts of the game you do is not deemed worthy to play. Does it not occur to you that many of us love the game so much that we actually care to make our concerns known?

    I think you have a lot of interesting things to say about the game, and I read you regularly, but honestly there is an unsettling change to your tone over the past couple of months, focusing on mean-spirited lecturing rather than on providing insights or stimulating discussion.

    Like

    • Not sure what you’re reading. I think the tone and style of writing is very supportive right now and Alt makes strong and valid points.

      There was a time when this blog criticised the game and its creators in a way I did not fully endorse and while there were problems with some aspects of the game, and much more with communication from Blizzard, much of the ‘problem’ was being amplified to a frenzied state by toxic parts of the community.

      And in this post Alt explains her journey to her current view point in a transparent and honest way.

      Calling into questions someone’s mental state I think belittles any legitimate argument you may make – and goes someway to prove her point.

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  2. My first question is usually, “Which server are you on?” which stems out of my frustration from the early years of the game when almost everybody I knew or met was on a different server than I.

    Blizz has done much to address that over the years, but the scars remain. “Are you on my server? Can I actually see you, play with you, interact with you in the game?” remains embedded in my view of WoW. (All the more so, as my other favored game, EVE Online, is something an anti-WoW, right down to everybody playing on the same server.)

    After that, questions usually goes to class, faction, how long they have been playing, and anecdotes about the game. I’ve never been on the “For the Horde/Alliance!” bandwagon.

    But in my experience, the idea that there is any sort of tangible, all encompassing WoW, or faction, or class, or even server community is largely an illusion. Instead there are just these little accidental communities of people who end up bumping into each other and exchanging tales.

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