Yesterday, having suggested quite a lot of money can be made cleaning up after other people, an interesting discussion arose on the gaming morality of doing just this. It has made me consider that quite a few things have changed since Draenor, and that the attempts Activision Blizzard are making to open this game up for individual players might yet have some unexpected and unpleasant consequences for those players not yet at max level. In fact, using the same areas as World Quests and levelling hubs combined is already showing some potentially interesting flaws.
Multi-tapping mobs, as a Skinner, is probably as good as it could ever get in terms of accessibility to raw materials. In reality however, I’ve never needed this, accessibility not even close to being as big a problem as it was with single tap mining and herbalism nodes. I’ve made a lot of money in starting areas of Expansions past, just standing around and skinning discarded kills. It is all about patience and persistence in my profession, but now it is possible to ‘skin’ mobs that provide ore and flowers? The rules seem to be a little different. There’s a thread here detailing a ban on a player ‘exploiting’ a high level spawn for Mining, and it is probably no wonder that ban was subsequently overturned. It’s a grey area that is only going to become more indistinct as time goes on. However, as the above tweet states, it’s not the mobs that are an issue in zones that are now being shared by high and low level players.
The biggest problem going forward could be the one thing everybody wanted for years.
Scaling in Instances is probably this Expansion’s most impressive triumph, especially when in a Guild group you’re not scrabbling for people to help you when either beginning or ending your levelling journey. However, scaling in the world may well see numbers falling on PvP realms as people find it impossible to quietly do their tasks without being griefed. I know that if I want a quiet ride then there will be no easy skinning at sub 110, and so using World Quests to supplement my ‘income’ becomes increasingly attractive. However, my biggest single problem right now with everyone in the same zones is lag. I’ll do 80 FPS in Pandaria: the exact same graphics settings will see me running sub 20 FPS on the Broken Isles. I shouldn’t have to change what I use because of the place I’m playing in. There are things to consider going forward, especially if the long-term plan is to extend the scaling tech beyond Legion.
I can’t criticise the zone-wide changes, or the improvements to gathering professions. As is often the case, when you bring in sweeping changes, there are undoubtedly consequences. I would expect to see these addressed as is often the case after enough data on usage is properly rationalised by the ActiBlizz Number Crunchers. For now, I think players should be mindful of what they do, how they do it and let their own moral compasses be arbiters of final actions. Of course, the problem is in this game is that a small yet annoying subset of players never turn up with a fair and equitable mindset to begin with. There’s always going to be someone trying to cheat the system, or give you a hard time when all you’d like to do is just quietly play.
In that regard, nothing has changed since Vanilla.