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Old 02-15-2018, 10:42 AM
Wreave Wreave is offline

Wisp
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Most of the major weight points are subjective, so there's not that much to argue about on them. We can give some specifics about why we like them (which we've done), but after that it's pretty much "agree to disagree" territiory.
  • What to include as NE relevant material. In the end, the question is what matters to you. Subjective.
  • Whether a particular zone/story experience is good or not: subjective.

"By Blizzard's Usual Standards": This could easily be a whole long thread in itself, but I'll try to keep it short.
  • McDonalds does not have the best food in the world. It is however, quite successful. If a new item goes onto their menu, then it should be judged in contrast to the rest of the menu, and not to the standards of higher cuisine. This is clearly true from a business sense, and its true from the perspective of a regular customer who likes eating there.
  • Granted if you're not a regular customer, then you'll use a different standard. That's fine. But again as business trying to first maintain their existing base, their "usual standard" is the first standard.

Evaluating Blizzes Usual Standards:
  • Low: Pop culture parodies. Lots in Cata (e..g the Indianna Jones thing in Uldum). Thankfully this sort of thing has been largely or entirely dropped.
  • Low: Gross faction favoritism: It's why I left in MoP and why I didn't play WoD until they rolled it into standard. Blizz reversed course on this drastically in Legion. Really looks like a major behind the scenes shakeup to me.
  • Low: Lack of concern with lore consistency. Legion has in contrast (and together with Chronicles) made a massive effort to fit things back together. Yes, they've retconned, but it looks like smart retcons, rather than "Oh we didn't even both to think about it." retcons.
  • Normal: Appealing to different tastes: Definitely part of their sucess is to appeal to different tastes. Forsaken stories have a very different appeal than Draenei stories. Satisfying both is hard to do, and it's probably impossible to make one side very happy without making the other side unhappy. (I'll note incidentally, that one of the advances of Legion is to temper the Alliance, to pull them back from a near parody of do-gooders.)
  • Normal: Melodrama
  • Normal: Quest to end-game, then gear grind through dungeons and raids. Blizz has steadily improved end-game questing over the last several expansions. Legion has clearly incorporated ideas from other games and improved the depth and story of the post-leveling game world.

Reviewing that, I would say that almost all of Legion is A by their usual standards. They've gotten rid of the worst aspects (parodies and faction favoritism), while generally raising the bar.

Suramar is substantially above their usual standards. But business wise, I don't think that it should be setting the new standard for Blizzard. WoW needs to serve a smorgasboard of tastes. Personally, I'm glad to see such stories (its actually what caused me to buy Legion), but other Blizz players have different tastes than mine, and Blizzard needs to maintain its diverse player base.


Anyway, that's getting off topic. On topic, our disagreements on NE story at this point are subjective, so I'm afraid that there's not much more to add.

Businesswise, if I were Blizzard doing the evalution, the main thing I would look for is whether there's been substantial negative feedback from players on the NE content in the game. And from my (erratic, sporadic) skimming of the story forums, I haven't seen much.

Edit: Re Ludonarrative:
Its a general point that things are going to feel different when you're the one taking the action rather than just watching a video. A couple of minor examples:
  • I was doubting that I would make much use of a velf based on what I saw before hand. But once I started making one, I found her more interesting than I thought I would.
  • When escorting Prince Farondis, part of the surprise is that he's not a usual escort. Mobs attack on the path, he says "Help!", you start going over going over to beat them down... and a pillar of fire drops out of the sky and they all drop dead before you have a chance to hit them. At which point, my character blinks, looks back over her shoulder at Farondis, who is now telling me to "hurry up and not wander off" as he continues on his past. Not your usual escort mission. It's a small thing, but pretty cool... and its a feeling you're probably not going to get from watching a Lets Play.

Now I'm not trying to convince you to play again. WoW is just too time consuming.

Last edited by Wreave; 02-15-2018 at 01:11 PM..
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