|Possibly the best Austin rip-off in the History of, like EVER.|
I got a bit of a slap yesterday about a comment in my Podcast, that things are quiet in game-land right now. There is still a great deal going on around these parts, and for many there are a new set of problems quite apart from dealing with the business of playing the game. In fact, people are having to queue to even get online, especially during busy periods, which is odd when I keep being told by the
The thing is, this game's always dared to be different.
I read Mr Syp's Bio Break Blog this week and couldn't help but smile at the following:
Granted that the expansion is coming along fast enough, I could totally see Blizzard dropping a Warlords of Draenor bomb just before ESO to rob that launch of some of its thunder. Blizzard is notorious for doing this, of course, but it’s entirely possible that WoD just won’t be ready and might angle more to a fall release when folks disillusioned with the new games will be ready to return to Mother Warcraft’s comforting embrace.
Quite apart from the fact he illustrates this post with a still from Stripes (10 points!), the concept of 'Mother Warcraft' threw up a number of interesting visual metaphors, and the understanding that I don't think Syp grasps just how important it is for Blizzard not to wait until the Autumn. With a flurry of renewed interest on the #warlordsreleasedate contest this week I know people are looking forward, and it's clear Blizzard's attempt to alleviate the issue of Server Queues (even down to opening free character transfers here in the EU as alleviation) There's a reason I dedicated a third of a podcast to this subject too, this is the break-point in a lot of ways for Warcraft, the Expansion that has everything to prove and very little room to be wrong. There are also potentially an awful lot of people standing by waiting to light their flammable light-sources and to pull out a sharp three-pronged implement on this release: I really cannot believe Blizzard have the luxury of playing the Soon (TM) Card. If there were a Hearthstone 'Make Your Own Card' Creator, [*] this is where I'd make one to illustrate the point :D
The fact that Blizzard's put everything up for sale, pre-Christmas, is also significant: in fact, this is possibly the single biggest push I've seen to get people into the game from scratch, or to encourage existing players to maybe get that second account, which is odd considering that if you end up server merging with someone else there's the possibility two server's worth of players could end up on the same Account anyway. Frankly, at the end of the day I'm guessing what happens is largely irrelevant on that score to Blizzard unless someone finds an exploit. This is, and always has been, a way for a gaming company to make money, and most franchises coming up for their tenth year I'd suspect would be quite happy just being able to bring in the coins on a regular basis. Success isn't relative in this sphere, it's that number on the page that says 'Monthly Subs' and there are very few people still able to tick that box on their Dev MMO Checklist to begin with.
Of COURSE it's not about being a cool kid, or having all the cash. However, I think we can safely say Blizzard's never been Clueless (SEE WHAT I DID THAR) when it comes to understanding how the land lies on these things. As Mr Oscar Wilde once said: 'There is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.' As long as we're all still here, there's no worry the game's going anywhere. Give the guys time to sort everything, because it's in their best interests to do just that because without us, there IS no game. Just don't forget that, in the end, what you think is important might not be what the majority believes is. With the server queues however, I think we can safely say this is one issue that they'll want fixed well before the Expansion launches...
[*] This should be a thing, it would make so many people happy.