WoW: Cataclysm - SPOILERS WITHIN

Farscry wrote:
Your other points have been discussed in this thread both pros and cons Mord, but I wanted to respond in particular to one point you raised on your blog post (yes, I read it, and while I disagree with most of your conclusions it was well-written and interesting to read :)):

Mordiceius wrote:
The notes talk about a “100 cap” as if level 100 would be a level ceiling that you cannot go past. Since when has that existed?

It's purely a psychological thing. Crossing the 100 barrier in an mmo is uncommon so far, and I suspect that many people view 100 as a natural point of conclusion. You know, 100%, for example. 100C to reach the boiling point of water. And so on.

There's no reason that levelling should stop at 100, it's just the mental perception of going past 100 as being "silly". But really, any arbitrary number is just as good as another IMO. *shrug*

Well then that is a very western idea for MMOs I guess. Many many many many many Asian MMOs have levels past 100. A large amount of MUDs (granted, mostly DIKUs) have high levels many going to level 400 or beyond.

I thought Blizzard had actually stated that 100 was going to be the final cap in WoW?

They havent. And of course there is no such cap.

Mordiceius wrote:
Well then that is a very western idea for MMOs I guess. Many many many many many Asian MMOs have levels past 100. A large amount of MUDs (granted, mostly DIKUs) have high levels many going to level 400 or beyond.

Oh, I definitely agree with you. But it just seems to be a mentality that's been at work in a lot of western commercial rpg's. Or maybe I just perceive it that way.

Mordiceius wrote:
A large amount of MUDs (granted, mostly DIKUs) have high levels many going to level 400 or beyond.

Which comes first: My hunter hits level 400 in WoW, or my 90th birthday?

This is a non-existent issue, and kind of frustrating to me. What do we call level 80 right now? The level cap. That rumor is potentially poorly worded (and is 3rd hand, so even if the level 85 cap is accurate, the reason for it could be wrong or again, poorly worded). Is it possible Blizz doesn't want a level cap higher than 100? Yes, and if so, I believe the wording as-is fits that meaning. The idea of some absolute limit of level 100 that is being discussed is a red herring at best, possibly a straw man.

I think that those who wish to provide reasoned, useful skepticism (not referring to Mord btw, haven't read his post yet) need to understand that they must criticize the most reasonable interpretation of a rumor, not some outlandish straw man. Additionally, a lot of the criticism I have seen has been a snap judgment, and disappointingly poorly thought out.

For example, Tobold gave 4 or 5 reasons for dismissing the rumors, none of which stand scrutiny - some were entirely pathetic, really. He said that Troll Druids cast great doubt on the whole thing, because then the Horde would have two Druid races to the Alliance's one. I honestly can't say enough about how ridiculous that statement was:

1) The Alliance already has 3 Paladin races to the Horde's one. This alone demolishes his entire point, but also:

2) The Worgen could very well have Druids as a class; they already shape-shift. Lore purists would do well to consider the existance of Draenei Shaman and (formerly) evil Belf Paladins. Also the article from the Before They Were Famous thread, where Blizz discusses how free and easy they are with what can "fit" in the WoW world.

I'm not saying criticism is bad, but I am saying that skepticism is a time-honored intellectual position, and Tobold and friends should be a bit more intellectual about it.

I dunno, Fed -- the Cataclysm post on MMO Champ reads exactly like every "fake patch notes" ever released -- some guy perused the forums for a week, took up the 10 ideas that he saw most "OMFG PLEEEAZZZEE BLIZZZAARDD DOOOOOO THIS" posts on, and wrote them down -- and the majority of it is in hideous, engrish-style grammar with typos all over it.

I think in this case even *bothering* to throw reasoned skepticism at it is a waste of time neccessitated by the same fanboys who probably carry automatic rifles to Obama's speeches.

Whether the rumors are true or not, they are unequivacobly a fanboy's wet dream, much, much moreso than TBC or WotLK was when it was leaked, and that simple fact alone should make people assume they are false until proven true.

Fedaykin98 wrote:
2) The Worgen could very well have Druids as a class; they already shape-shift.

I was actually already thinking that the mere existence of the Troll Druid and lack of a second Alliance Druid race implies this very fact, assuming these rumors are true of course.

Edit:

Seth wrote:
I dunno, Fed -- the Cataclysm post on MMO Champ reads exactly like every "fake patch notes" ever released -- some guy perused the forums for a week, took up the 10 ideas that he saw most "OMFG PLEEEAZZZEE BLIZZZAARDD DOOOOOO THIS" posts on, and wrote them down -- and the majority of it is in hideous, engrish-style grammar with typos all over it.

I'd have to go back and look things over again extremely carefully, but I seem to recall a fair number of grammatical and typo errors in things that seemed like they were his text, as opposed to something he copied from somewhere else. Even if it's copied from somewhere else, it's presented as reporting on the rumors and information he's received from elsewhere, so I would tend to expect grammatical corrections by the editor. Not sure how much to stake on the grammar, at least.

I tend to agree with it largely being an "OMFG" type list though, aside from the 85 level cap. That seems to be somewhat of an outlier. I would tend to assume that most people would take 10 levels for granted (i.e., it wouldn't even cross their mind it would be otherwise), so that's the oddball that makes me wonder about how much of this might be true, or at least partially true if not clearly understood (like the confusion around the Guardian).

I honestly don't see what the grammar and spelling of Boubille have to do with the rumor's authenticity in any way. Did I read that he was a non-native English speaker? And again, his record is very strong. That doesn't make this true, it just keeps me from dismissing it.

Also again, I don't understand how this being what players want takes away from its likelihood. In any smart business, you'd want to give your customers what they want.

Did baboille manually re write all that? he's french, so if he manually typed all that out, that would explain it. I thought he said he got it from multiple sources, and I just assumed he copy n pasted then mucked with the formatting like a normal web master.

In any smart business, you'd want to give your customers what they want.

I would say that you surprise them with new and original ideas, and kick back maybe 1 or 2 gimmies to make them happy. Typically customers don't even know what will make them happy, and even if they do, devs are notoriously bad for screwing it up.

The change to 10/25 man raids was a HUGE surprise that I don't think anyone saw coming. Throwing in more Chromie lore was clearly a kickback to beggars on the forums.

I see a whole lot of Chromie in that post. Such a gigantic amount of fanboy service in one place without an iota of originality just reeks of non Blizzard involvement. It's seriously like someone read the WoW speculation thread and cut n pasted most of it.

Btw I have now read Mord's post, some of which I agree with, including the Thrall story. Other parts, I disagreed with. Seth should be warned that I found several grammatical errors.

I also re-read Tobold's criticism, which I continue to find very poorly thought out.

Btw Wow.com now has an article with some interesting thoughts on the rumored class/race combinations.

If they do drag out getting to 100, and even state that 100 will be the "final end, end game," can you imagine how big the expansion that inevitably goes past 100 will be? That would be the Mother of all Level Cap increases!

My take on speculation/leaks/changelog/etc is that until it's coming from an official blizzard source, it's not official. Maybe it's right, maybe it's wrong. Getting stressed about the details and trying to 'prove' one way or the other isn't worth it. Blizzard are happy to occasionally rewrite their own rules in their games, so you can never entire rule out any change. Until blizzard announce it themselves I'm happy playing the 'what if' game.

If anything though, I'm a bit tired with what seems to me to be over analysis of everything WoW related. Theorycrafters are only to be expected in a RPG where you get numbers for stats and not "this looks sharp", but the amount of effort that goes into the ecology around WoW. I suppose it feeds off the sheer number of people involved with it, I can't think of another game to compare.

You're right Fed -- Tobold complaining about troll druids is a load of baloney. I also don't buy his logic that flying is impossible in Azeroth, because it's "too hard" to remake all of Azeroth. I mean really, what's harder -- redoing Azeroth or creating / inventing an entire new continent?

My honest opinion? The MMO Champion leaked announcements are all fake, but done by a very insightful person, and very many of them turn out to be true. I've seen faked patch notes that ended up being 80% correct, I don't see why this won't turn out the same way.

Fedaykin98 wrote:
... He said that Troll Druids cast great doubt on the whole thing, because then the Horde would have two Druid races to the Alliance's one. I honestly can't say enough about how ridiculous that statement was:

1) The Alliance already has 3 Paladin races to the Horde's one. This alone demolishes his entire point...

The horde have 3 shaman races to the alliance's one. What's your point?

Fedaykin98 wrote:

2) The Worgen could very well have Druids as a class; they already shape-shift. Lore purists would do well to consider the existance of Draenei Shaman and (formerly) evil Belf Paladins.

This is a good point. I can't see Blizzard giving horde a second druid class without balancing it with the alliance. Paladins and shaman were always a bit askew, but they're balanced invertedly on both sides.

My biggest issue was that gnomes never had a healing class, and they were the only one that didn't. I like healing, and my preferred races to play are gnomes and tauren. If they do introduce the gnome priest, I'll be a happy gnome.

I don't know that I can say it better than I already did; the 3:1 pally or shaman ratio disproves Tobold's point.

Fedaykin98 wrote:
2) The Worgen could very well have Druids as a class; they already shape-shift. Lore purists would do well to consider the existance of Draenei Shaman and (formerly) evil Belf Paladins.

If Worgen Druids are true, there better damn well be a way for me to change Baylie's race. I'd reroll a new character in a second if I had to, but she's been my main for the better part of 3 years...

Not sure if anyone browsed through the sneak peek at the comic or not (posted on mmo-champion, and probably elsewhere), but that content would seem to be pointing in the same direction of some of the rumors...

Yeah, that really makes that particular rumor more reliable. Still there is a long way from Thrall being in the council, while remaining leader of the Horde, to becoming Guardian, but it makes it more trustworthy for sure, as it explains why a shaman would even be a candidate in the first place.

Yep, it's not much more than pointing in the same direction. It's not all the way there, but the concept of expanding the council beyond mages is. They also express confusion over who might represent the druids, which is where Malfurion could come in (though that's quite a jump from what they're discussing).

Gametrailers has a good video showing some of the possible places in Azeroth that could be included in an expansion. It's not directly related to the Cataclysm rumors, but this seemed like the best thread for it anyway.

http://www.gametrailers.com/video/wo...

Kosars wrote:
Gametrailers has a good video showing some of the possible places in Azeroth that could be included in an expansion. It's not directly related to the Cataclysm rumors, but this seemed like the best thread for it anyway.

http://www.gametrailers.com/video/wo...

Oh, stuff like this drives me INSANE. I don't even care about new raid content or quests or whatever, I just want to hear and experience the story of these places.

Gametrailers is great at this stuff too. I nearly had a geekgasm when they did their whole speculative twisting and turning effort to connect every Zelda game in a logical chronology.

With the whole level cap thing, when I was running a private server back in the TBC days, the in-game level cap for a character was 255. So BLizz could go pretty far if they wanted to. I could have sworn MMO-C just said that the whole Cataclysm thing is rumor mill and that if you choose to believe that is on you because SA can not be taken as a reliable source.

Demonicmaster wrote:
With the whole level cap thing, when I was running a private server back in the TBC days, the in-game level cap for a character was 255.

Honestly, the level cap can literally be whatever amount they want it to as long as it fits within a long integer value. Or who knows, maybe there's a larger variable range they have to work with. Level ranges are purely arbitrary.

Farscry wrote:
Demonicmaster wrote:
With the whole level cap thing, when I was running a private server back in the TBC days, the in-game level cap for a character was 255.

Honestly, the level cap can literally be whatever amount they want it to as long as it fits within a long integer value. Or who knows, maybe there's a larger variable range they have to work with. Level ranges are purely arbitrary.

Oh, don't worry your pretty head about that, pretty much every language these days has some sort of arbitrary precision integer object.

As one of my developers once told a business analyst in response to whether or not we could accomplish some totally ridiculous set of requirements, "We can put a submarine on the bottom of the ocean, it's just a question of time and money." I still laugh about that, though I admit that it's primarily funny given the developer and analyst in question.

Edit: I guess the question would be database, but then Oracle stores numbers by number of digits, as opposed to number of bytes being used (not sure exactly how it translates it on the backend). Can you tell my brain is in coding mode right now?

Demonic - No, on the first set of rumors, he said he has a very good source. He's put his record on the line, definitely.

robkid wrote:
Edit: I guess the question would be database, but then Oracle stores numbers by number of digits, as opposed to number of bytes being used (not sure exactly how it translates it on the backend). Can you tell my brain is in coding mode right now?

Good for you, my brain hurts!

Fedaykin98 wrote:
Demonic - No, on the first set of rumors, he said he has a very good source. He's put his record on the line, definitely.

Well damn, if they phase Azeroth I think that would be a welcome change. I mean they already changed Onyxia for the 80 crowd, no they just need to add an epic quest chain again to make the encounter not just an encounter.

Farscry wrote:
zeroKFE wrote:
robkid wrote:
Farscry wrote:
Undead Hunters make absolutely no sense whatsoever.

Not sure about this. You could make a fair argument for anything undead, since they're raised people from other race, unless you wanted to make undead raised humans only, but then what about Sylvanas herself?

Yeah, aren't they sort of lead by an undead hunter?

Yeah, but she's Survival spec and doesn't bother with a pet. ;)

You're forgetting about Nathanos Blightcaller. Clearly BM spec, with 3 undead wolves.

AnimeJ wrote:
You're forgetting about Nathanos Blightcaller. Clearly BM spec, with 3 undead wolves.

I actually don't remember that one. That from WoW or Warcraft III?