We believe there was a lot of confusion when we originally announced this change and we're certainly at fault for said confusion. The original patch note was very vague to the point of being misleading. It was never our intent to weaken old raid boss encounters to allow anyone to have a chance to solo them, regardless of class, spec, or skill.
What we did change were encounters that were mechanically impossible for one person to accomplish, solely for the purpose of ensuring players have easier access to the hunt for the new rare companion pets -- the drop rates of which are actually set to account for a group of three players, not one.
Moving forward, though, we do not plan to adjust encounters for tougher raid bosses to be solo’able by all classes and specs.
That reminds me, I must mail that 50g to my Guildie.
After that, let's just take a moment to acknowledge the 'we're certainly at fault' in the above statement in relation to the 'Raiding with Leashes' achievement. Battle Pets are very much the solo pursuit, without doubt created with the single player in mind. I don't think therefore it was at all unreasonable to assume that when a bunch of Battle Pets got thrown into the Classic Raid loot tables you'd be able to pick them all up all by yourself. They've fiddled enough to make it a three person task though (unless you're already in a position to solo everything) which is all well and good for all of us lucky enough to be able to call upon some friends to assist us.
So, what about the people who don't?
The last sentence bothers me the most in all of this: It is entirely understandable to expect content to be a) relevant and b) of suitable difficulty for the size of instance that it is attached to. I don't think anyone would realistically expect Blizzard to retool everything to a point where it became academic. However, there are ways around this, and I'm amazed that they weren't considered. For a start, the choice of certain bosses is pretty incredible: The Twin Emperors? REALLY? Of all the other bosses in that instance you deliberately pick the most technically complicated to stick a pet on? There REALLY wasn't a way to make Razorgore simpler than the method you picked? You couldn't have simply reduced the number of adds that spawned or made the time between the Boss MC and the first wave even longer?
Yes, I know I'm not a programmer, and I'm aware of the often unexpected consequences of certain actions. However, I am very well versed with those bosses, and I find myself thinking that whoever picked these particular drop points weren't thinking from a practical viewpoint, they had boss and associated pet looks prioritised above the mechanics. I also suspect that seeding pets into the Trash loot tables wasn't even considered as a possibility, which is sad because it would have made life considerably more interesting. However, I can't help thinking that Blizzzard totally missed a trick here, especially with MC and AQ40 tied up with reputation grinds that have, for the most part, lost most of the quest lines that were initially associated with them.
This could have been a perfect opportunity to give players who haven't been around since Vanilla a chance to earn rep with two (or even more) of the older factions. In AQ40's case there's quest givers already in place inside the Instance, how hard would it have been to shift them to just inside the Entrance so that newer players know they exist and to standardise the places with the rest of the later instances? How difficult would it have been to make the bosses in MC or BWL drop the same type of tokens you get in AQ for rep gain? You could make the Blackrock ones give a choice of either a) giving Hydraxian or b) Thorium Brotherhood rep, thus allowing additional choice of beneficiaries. Surely that won't take any fiddling with bosses for that to happen, save a few additions to loot tables? Oh, and next time you decide that it's cool to stick a pet on a boss that SPECIFICALLY REQUIRES FROST DAMAGE TO KILL, it might be an idea to make that clearer than it is.
If we look at this exercise as a precursor to the inevitable next step, where we'll see pets in other places they weren't before, and we know Blizzard won't be changing the rules on difficulty, it might be time for a bit of a rethink. There are lots of ways to find pets, after all. Just please, PLEASE, don't make any more dependant on weather conditions or CRZ stability.
I really don't want any more grey hairs than I already possess... ^^