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  #276  
Old 10-24-2019, 03:47 AM
Krainz Krainz is offline

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Originally Posted by Kyalin V. Raintree View Post
I have recently encountered an argument that holds the following:

Not a single person wanted Teldrassil. It is therefore ridiculous to claim that even a subset of Horde players for wanted, received, or basked in the War of the Thorns.
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  #277  
Old 10-24-2019, 08:01 AM
Kyalin V. Raintree Kyalin V. Raintree is offline

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I didn't include you on the list, Krainz, because from the very beginning you've struck me as someone who has wanted to see more destructive conflict in general, as opposed to simply advocating that one side should curbstomp the other.
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  #278  
Old 11-03-2019, 11:06 PM
Insane Guy of Doom Insane Guy of Doom is offline

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Some night elf stuff brought up throughout Blizzcon:

-All the night elves who died at Teldrassil were sent to the Maw, the Warcraft equivalent of the deepest layer of hell, to be tortured for eternity. This was Sylvanas' plan all along as every soul sent to the Maw makes her more powerful (they gave this plus the additional deaths caused by the ensuing fourth war as the explanation for why she could defeat Bolvar so easily). The death toll for Teldrassil + the Fourth War was in the "millions" (though it may have included Legion, its not really clear). For comparison, the death toll from Wrath of the Lich King was given as being in the tens of thousands, maybe 100,000 at the most. They just can't catch a break.

-In better news, the Alliance canonically won the Darkshore warfront. This won't be reflected in-game however, as they would have to remove the Warfront content to do so.

-Tyrande is a main character in Shadowlands: “We’re gonna learn more about Tyrande’s story. Obviously, she is still very upset about what happened to her people. That’s going to lead her to Ardenweald. She’s gonna get some answers to some questions, and there’s gonna be some stuff coming with her that’s too spoiler-y to talk about but there’s more Tyrande…. All I can say is she has a pretty big story moment in Ardenweald. Very big role also.”

Last edited by Insane Guy of Doom; 11-04-2019 at 01:09 AM..
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  #279  
Old 11-04-2019, 07:09 AM
Kyalin V. Raintree Kyalin V. Raintree is offline

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Insane Guy of Doom View Post
Some night elf stuff brought up throughout Blizzcon:

-All the night elves who died at Teldrassil were sent to the Maw, the Warcraft equivalent of the deepest layer of hell, to be tortured for eternity. This was Sylvanas' plan all along as every soul sent to the Maw makes her more powerful (they gave this plus the additional deaths caused by the ensuing fourth war as the explanation for why she could defeat Bolvar so easily). The death toll for Teldrassil + the Fourth War was in the "millions" (though it may have included Legion, its not really clear). For comparison, the death toll from Wrath of the Lich King was given as being in the tens of thousands, maybe 100,000 at the most. They just can't catch a break.

-In better news, the Alliance canonically won the Darkshore warfront. This won't be reflected in-game however, as they would have to remove the Warfront content to do so.

-Tyrande is a main character in Shadowlands: “We’re gonna learn more about Tyrande’s story. Obviously, she is still very upset about what happened to her people. That’s going to lead her to Ardenweald. She’s gonna get some answers to some questions, and there’s gonna be some stuff coming with her that’s too spoiler-y to talk about but there’s more Tyrande…. All I can say is she has a pretty big story moment in Ardenweald. Very big role also.”
Well, I guess it's time for the hot take.

Thank you for mentioning that, and I'd like to thank Krainz as well for mentioning some of the recent developments over Discord. I'd been sort of following Blizzcon, and I've been having to go back and forth over some of the developments mentioned above. I don't think I'm quite done arguing with myself about them, but here's where I am at the moment.

----------------

"It Matters"

This is one of the few things that Blizzard got right when they were marketing Battle for Azeroth. The Horde and the Alliance matter, competitive rivalries matter. Anyone with even a passing interest in any activity that involves two groups of people gathering under different identities knows this - and Blizzard knew this. I was never on board with the people who just thought the faction war was bad as a concept. I would have loved the chance to participate in one - but I like a race that the devs don't, so my option for participation is to lose horrifically and not have anything I can do about it, never be respected as a threat on the basis of the race I want to play, and know that nothing I would want to work for will amount to anything because while Blizzard does have the resources for a full court press designed to showcase the depths and tragedy of the Night Elves' failure to defend Teldrassil, those resources don't exist to rehabilitate the player race to the point where they deserve to be regarded as a serious option anymore - and they never will.

Darkshore was a victory? That's nice but it didn't feel that way at the time. Ashenvale is still a giant question mark (one that's already been used to claim that the Horde kept the territory), and I still never saw that victory make it onscreen. Even the cinematic that I had other, more optimistic Night Elf fans trying to point me to in order to resolve that we 'won' was cut. So, we're still left with a nice pile of ashes, really, one that Blizzcon attendees can cheer about for eight uninterrupted seconds in celebration of the Horde's total defeat and humiliation of the Night Elves as I stand in the corner and whimper: "b-but, Danuser said we won in this one place, guys... s-see? Here's the timestamp".

As I said to Krainz last night, Blizzard doesn't get to just declare the faction war over and move on. They've rendered a lot of damage to peoples' ability to feel good about playing what they want to play. It's not limited to me, it's not limited to Night Elves, and it's not all about humiliation - but it's there and it needs to be fixed. For Night Elf fans, it's not acceptable to once again deny catharsis over the big hit we were forced to endure because Blizzard wants to shift the focus again.

"Oh, but they said that Tyrande is getting a big story in Shadowlands!"

I'll believe that this is going to exist and that it's going to be satisfying when I see it. When Cataclysm dropped, I was 20. I'll be turning 30 next year and I still haven't seen any sort of redemption for that - but I did see a lot of hopeful speculation, promises, and hints that always turned out to be either nothing, or something that made the situation worse. I don't feel like waiting until I'm collecting Social Security benefits to expect some level of redress, and the time I have spent waiting have certainly soured me on any excitement I'd otherwise get in hearing Blizzard's statements.

I probably will not be following Shadowlands to the extent that I followed BfA. The moment has passed, there will be no remediation for this, it appears. I expect that these posts will get less frequent, and I will draw back my participation in any WoW related discord channels over time. I take a certain enjoyment from the research and argumentation that I put into things like this, but the source material isn't worth my time.
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  #280  
Old 11-04-2019, 08:52 AM
Krainz Krainz is offline

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Wow, well, you know, the Night Elves have taken some shots on the chin, for sure. In the Battle for Azeroth and Tyrande is one of the most beloved characters and in all of Warcraft canon, and, you know, I don't want to speak to datamined broadcasts and things like that, but we will see Tyrande have some conversations with some of our other characters as we kind of wrap up the Battle for Azeroth. And you know it's that's a storyline that we definitely want to pay off and we have some interesting things in the coming expansion that I don't want to spoil but I hope that Night Elf players get to see a new side of her and their culture in a way.
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  #281  
Old 11-04-2019, 10:18 AM
Kyalin V. Raintree Kyalin V. Raintree is offline

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@Krainz

As noted above:

Quote:
I'll believe that this is going to exist and that it's going to be satisfying when I see it.
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  #282  
Old 11-04-2019, 10:48 AM
Krainz Krainz is offline

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I wasn't really sure whether compressing the Night Elves all under Tyrande's portrayal was a good thing or not for their fans.
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  #283  
Old 11-04-2019, 01:39 PM
Kyalin V. Raintree Kyalin V. Raintree is offline

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Originally Posted by Krainz View Post
I wasn't really sure whether compressing the Night Elves all under Tyrande's portrayal was a good thing or not for their fans.
I don't think it was, but that's not the argument I'm trying to convey. My point here is that I will believe in something that Blizzard said onstage when I see evidence that it will be in the game.
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  #284  
Old 11-07-2019, 07:20 PM
Krainz Krainz is offline

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https://www.wowhead.com/news=296142/...ancial-results
  • World of Warcraft Classic drove the biggest quarterly increase to subscription plans in franchise history, in both the West and East.
  • Reach in October remained well above pre-Classic levels, with deep engagement across Classic and Modern World of Warcraft.
  • Lower Y/Y against a comparable that included BFA

Apparently BFA's launch was indeed huge.
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  #285  
Old 11-11-2019, 08:49 PM
Mutterscrawl Mutterscrawl is offline

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Whenever they talk about 'a new side to their culture' I wince.

Whatever they have planned is going to be a mess.
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  #286  
Old 11-13-2019, 10:27 PM
Kyalin V. Raintree Kyalin V. Raintree is offline

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So, I've looked at the third quarter 10Q. Here are my thoughts:

3Q 10Q: https://www.sec.gov/ix?doc=/Archives...02019x10xq.htm
2Q 10Q: https://www.sec.gov/ix?doc=/Archives...02019x10xq.htm

Note 13 provides us with some of the most useful information for our purposes in the 10-Q. Not only does it break out results by segment, thereby isolating Blizzard, it also shows us what net income looks like before and after changes in deferred revenue. (See my prior conversations on deferred revenue for that.)

What I've done below is compare the third quarter with the second quarter to try and pick out any significant changes. This data consists only of Blizzard-specific data, and doesn't include Activision or King.:

By Distribution Channel by Kyalin Raintree, on Flickr
By Region by Kyalin Raintree, on Flickr
By Platform by Kyalin Raintree, on Flickr

I think the platform data is the most interesting, because whereas there are only very slight changes in most of the data, we see that PC segment net revenues are a little under 10% higher than they were last quarter, while console and mobile (read: Where Overwatch and Hearthstone live) are down. Console net revenues are down pretty heavily in fact (although this is partially cushioned by 'other', which includes distribution and esports). Given all of this, while I hesitate to use platform data as a proxy for whether we're talking about World of Warcraft or not, it's a pretty good indicator here of just what impact Classic is having.

Another notable, but easy-to-miss fluctuation is the positive change in retail channels over the quarter, which means that people are going to the store and picking boxes up from the shelf as opposed to a previously unsubscribed player reupping their subscription so that they can play classic. Warcraft is of course not the only product available for boxed sales, and there still are people who buy game time from physical packs and cards, but on balance, this is probably positive news for WoW.

I wanted to lead with that because I've been focusing a lot on MAUs recently. As a reminder, as of March 31, 2018, Blizzard had 38 million of them (this being within the BfA preorder season). As of June and September 30, 2018, this figure was 37. Then in the fourth quarter, primarily due to WoW, the figure dropped to 35. In the first quarter of 2019, it dipped again to 32 - this time due to Hearthstone and Overwatch, and held steady at 32 in the second quarter.

I want to again remind people that these narrative descriptions are concerned with material movements, and we see an example of what it means when one moves up and the other one moves down. This quarter, MAUs increased to 33 million, as noted in the 10Q on page 43:

"The slight increase in Blizzard’s average MAUs is due to an increase in average MAUs for World of Warcraft, largely offset by lower average MAUs for Hearthstone."

This would seem to support the idea that yes, Classic spurred the largest increase in subscriber counts in franchise history. That being said, I do want to point out to the continued existence of deferred revenue as an item that needs to be subtracted FROM net revenues per GAAP in order to get to segment net revenues. That means that money is still being amortized out of deferred revenues, net, rather than being added to it - which is a bit of a grey lining to this particular white cloud.
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