Normally, Wednesday would be a regularly scheduled post on Warcraft history, but today we’re going off script for a reason. I’ve been thinking about how content is currently deployed by ActiBlizz, in particular cases without any indicator it is in fact that to begin with.
Yeah, you heard me correctly.
This tweet refers to a bunch of stones that spawn in Dalaran, and that’s all I’m going to say on the matter. The answer is already known, I am told to a bunch of people on a Discord server who discovered it and (presumably by now) on at least one data mining website. Mr Feasel it appears also gave some other clues in his Twitter feed, so if you’d like to go and try make the discovery for yourself… that’s a good place to start. I find myself wondering at the merit of having to ‘hide’ content like this so that it is a surprise, when everything can be just be that if you never use the Internet to look up how to do stuff in game to begin with. In fact, part of me is now beginning to wonder exactly what the point of content is if Designers push you to discover it remotely to begin with.
Where’s the real ‘surprise’ if somebody else is prompting the discovery?
Yeah, I know how miserable this makes me sound, but hear me out for a second. I understand that, as a designer, it might be a tad annoying that you got to stick all this cool shiz in Azeroth and then, ONLY THREE WEEKS INTO THE PATCH, nobody worked out where it is. If it matters that much that it is found, presumably, you’d put the data mining markers in to begin with so it could be picked up in PTR testing. If it is so obscure that you have to hand hold people through every stage to the end, or the clues don’t exist in game for players to pick up and they need Twitter as a prompt to solve your puzzles? You’re not doing it right. You’ve effectively made Discord and Twitter part of the game’s UI, and if players don’t have either, you’re disadvantaging them from taking part.
I don’t want to be this person, but part of me wishes that if someone wanted to make great, immersive treasure hunts or cool ‘vanity’ projects for ALL players, not just the lucky ones with English as their first language and access to a designer’s Twitter account, it could be accomplished without the need to flag every step of the journey. What this makes for, of course, is great news site content, and just shows how wonderful it is that players and designers are working so well together. That’s a designer and a very select group of players: no, I don’t hate anyone, and I certainly am not jealous I don’t get to ‘announce’ the cool stuff before you decide that’s why I’m whining. This game needs to be accessible to everybody, and right now things like this make me feel that’s not the case.
Mostly, on days like today, I feel that perhaps there’s something fundamentally missing here that I’m not grasping. Maybe I’ve just lost the ‘vibe’ of the game, I don’t know. Perhaps this was just a straw on a back that’s tired of being told that I need to play this game with so much baggage attached that it becomes impossible to cope with the basics to maintain my presence. Needless to say, if you want to make a game ‘fun’ for someone like me, stop holding my hand and give me enough clues to be able to work the damn thing out for myself.
Otherwise this stops being fun and simply becomes another grind.