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World of Warcraft Editorial: Patch 2.0.1: Before the Storm

By Hasani Davis on December 18, 2006

World of Warcraft: Patch 2.0.2, Before the Storm

Editorial by Hasani Davis

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of MMORPG.com, its staff or management.

With only a little more than a month to go before The Burning Crusade hits stores Blizzard has put out one of the few last patches to Warcraft before the expansion changes the game forever. Patch 2.0.1 finally went live with some dramatic changes to the PvP system that Warcraft had to offer, do not worry, we will discuss those changes shortly. Players were given a Talent refresh to their characters because the talent trees were updated to reflect the upcoming levels in the expansion. So with several new spells, abilities, and pets, the game looked a little different, but it was the same old Warcraft.

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Gear, gear, gear, and more gear is what really matters in Before the Storm. Now PvP rewards can be gotten without the ridiculous grind it took players to gain the rank in order to purchase the items. No Wait! For those who did not hear, one week into the new Honor system and Blizzard has changed their minds again. Now there has been a 30% reduction to the honor you gain from PvP. Sound crazy, this was posted on the Blizzard forums Tuesday by Blizzard employee Nethaera:

Now that the Before the Storm content patch has been live for the past week, we’ve had a better opportunity to track the rate at which players are accumulating honor, and subsequently how easy it's been to obtain honor rewards. In gauging these elements, we've determined that the effort required to obtain honor rewards is more trivial than we had intended. As a result, during today's maintenance we’ve applied a hotfix that reduced the amount of honor gained by approximately 30%. This change allows the honor rewards to be obtained at rate that better reflects the item’s in-game value.

The reason that we decided to reduce the rate of honor gain rather than simply raise the honor cost of each item, is to ensure that everyone’s time and effort participating in PvP since the patch is not diminished. As this change will only affect future honor accumulation.

So I guess the only comment we have here is congratulations to players who grinded out the week and exploited the system that Blizzard put in place for seven days. I personally was very excited to get some neat new gear only to have my hopes extended by 30% of my play time.

This is very frustrating to players. I know Blizzard sits atop its seven million player hill but really who makes the decisions over there? It seemed like players who enjoy PvP finally got a chance to catch up to all of the Tier 2-3 armor raid groups and actually compete on an equal playing field. Nope sorry, your play time will be extended. On the edge of Burning Crusade why make this type of switch to players? I guess my question is has Blizzard become to high and mighty on their player base to adjust things that quickly on them? I hate to mention that there are dozens of MMOs coming out in the next year or so, will WoW remain on top of that hill forever? Not with decisions like this one.

With The Burning Crusade delayed and patches and hot fixes galore it makes you wonder what is going on over there. I know that development is not easy for video games, especially MMOs. However, Blizzard has had two full years to set up a team to work on this expansion. Two Full Years! I cannot stress that enough. There are many different theories on what is going on over there. One is that making the PvP rewards a little easier to get will give players the items they needs to survive in the level 60-70 dungeons. Another is that, with the expansions and the boost to level seventy, all level sixty epics will be worthless soon because players will be grinding and fighting over the level seventy epics. This theory is upsetting because some players have been trying for months to get High Warlord gear only to have it taken away and made easier. Then once again to have it changed in one week’s time to make it harder again. If those last two sentences made sense to you be glad, maybe you can get a job at Blizzard. It just seems like a lot of jumping around right before the first major expansion of the game.

The point of this editorial and many others about World of Warcraft is to try and figure out what is going on with the biggest MMO in the world. No matter how many people play the game and how many people love it, there is always room for opinion and a reason to question the design choices made by developers. As for PvP in WoW, I know they are trying to make it more fun, but this whole switch on the player base just flat out pisses us off. Let us know your thoughts on the forums. We are very curious if people feel slighted in any way.

Hasani Davis / Gaming online since 1993! yes Neverwinter nights was that long ago. Formerly of Bloomberg Markets magazine and Schwab magazine now putting my journalism degree to work in gaming industry.

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