Despite a domestic issue last night, I made the time to sit down and listen to the 7.1.5 Developer Q&A. I have to be honest, as I always am, it wasn’t really what I’d hoped for.
I lost interest quite early in, because I’m not that fussed about which class will be nerfed and/or buffed. I switched off somewhere around Emerald Dreamcatcher, I’m sorry. This will be very disappointing to those of you who enjoy this stuff but really, truthfully, it was all a bunch of numbers and discussion about mechanics… and then I started staring at the Twitch chat instead, which was remarkably sedate by previous transmission standards. In fact, I probably learnt more about the state of the game from a general perspective from other people’s individual reactions to the questions than I did from the responses themselves.
What was obvious however was contrition. Ret Pallies are broken and won’t get fixed for a while (where have we heard that before?) But it’s not just them, lots of classes aren’t working and have issue that need addressing, and that in many cases will take more than a couple of weeks to correct. In fact, if you read a certain third party site’s recap, you could be forgiven for thinking they’re a set of April Fools Patch notes from a few years past:
No idea about the other two Hunter specs, but hey, at least we’re not Warlocks, right?
At this point I will happily accept that balancing is hard, painful and I’m not qualified to comment on how difficult it is, because I don’t have a fucking clue. However, what I can tell you is that the Q&A did very little to make this process sound anything other than mind-numbingly boring, and that perhaps dedicating an entire hour to breaking down maths is going to end up being a fair deal dryer and less compelling than dealing in big, shiny specifics. Honestly, I think the Q&A would have been better served in not trying to appease every class that’s swamped the Forums with questions, but in making people understand HOW THIS PROCESS WORKS. Maybe there could also have been advice on how to better present issues you have with classes to Blizzard. Next time, it might also be a good idea to be clear that your Q&A will only be about class tuning (except for 3 questions at the end) so those of us who
don’t give a fuck aren’t interested can go back to dealing with domestic drama.
If it had been me, for what it’s worth, I would simply have listed all the specs I know are broken, without going into details. I would have explained that now so much isn’t working there’s a targeted plan to address the most pressing issues, and attempt to provide people some tentative timescales around what is being worked on (we’ll be spending X weeks on the Warlock issues before sending them to the PTR, followed by Retri Paladins, and so on) However, hidden inside these details there were some really telling admissions, the biggest one of which was wrapped around the Orange Gear that everybody wants but if they don’t get the right one?
This again was a WTF moment roughly akin to the admission that Devs never expected people to obsessively grind AP. It was mentioned in passing, almost a throwaway comment, but knowing just how much drama and discussion this game change has created? There was a pretty universal response once it became apparent what these things would do: ‘this will be divisive, there will be prejudice’ and yet 7.1.5 introduces more of the same. Honestly, if you think these things are an issue, why are you putting more of them into the game? Some days, I really do not understand these people’s thought processes at all, and an hour of discussion like this goes no way towards making that process any clearer.
I think I’ll be better served just pretending yesterday didn’t happen and instead going back to fishing up the last 100 Darkmoon fishies for my Skate. If I spent my life obsessing about that level of detail around my character, this game would lose interest pretty damn fast. I’ll just keep playing at my speed, and everything else undoubtedly will take care of itself. This is also the moment I’m really glad I stopped raiding, don’t care about being top of anything, and would simply like to play casually for the rest of my days, because this is a mugs game and I’m more than happy being a scrub.