Monday, June 22, 2009

[3.2]Thoughts on the new emblem system

Copey asked this a couple days ago:

I think the biggest deal in the current patch notes is that they stepping away from the different tiers of emblems that are offered, and making emblems of conquest drop from heroics and T7 10 man raids. This will be a huge boon to people that don’t or can’t run Uld 25 man because they can now purchase iLvL 226 gear and never step into Uld 25.

It’s like back in BC where you could get Black Temple level gear just by farming Kara for 22 badges a week. What are your thoughts on this?
Lots of other bloggers have chimed in here and there. I wasn't going to bother because it didn't seem that big of a deal, but what the heck.

First off, the basics: everything that did drop valor or heroism will now drop conquest. Daily normal and heroic runs will drop triumph emblems. The 10 and 25-man versions of the new raid will also drop triumph. The new 5-man dungeon will also reward triumph badges.

That's the new rules.

What this means, practically, is that anyone will be able to get ilvl 226 gear fairly quickly. It also means things like older WotLK content will be valuable to run, in a similar way to how Kara was before.

It means that 10-man Naxx and 25-man Naxx will drop the exact same badges if you care, so the only real advantage to running 25-man is to get a couple pieces of loot and do 25 people at the same time instead of 10.

Heroics will be fairly valuable, but more importantly the dailies will be very valuable and sought out after; 2-3 triumph emblems a day is (at current tier prices) a piece of tier 9 (or equivalent) gear in a month, assuming you do no other raiding.

For the record: this is a good thing.

I have never had a problem with folks getting geared up at a faster pace as an expansion goes along. Point of fact I think it's pretty stupid to think otherwise. Why should anyone care how fast someone else gears up? Why should that matter? If you're worried about achievements, it still doesn't mean that they'll have cleared the places you have. Giving a bunch of people 226 or 239 gear doesn't mean they'll be able to faceroll Sarth3D, much less much of Ulduar. And even if they do clear it later - how does that reduce your accomplishment?

The notion that other people can somehow reduce what you did by doing it thanks to easier times or easier loot seems...weird to me.

Furthermore, gearing people up faster is crucial to the success of the game. You can't have people go through long slogs to get to the point where you're at as an expansion moves on; otherwise, you'll never be able to get new players in. They'll see this progression path of months and months and simply say fuck it. Or you'll try and recruit but they'll never be able to participate in progression with you, or at least not for significant amounts of time.

Furthermore, heroics had to be buffed. Heroic content was being utilized at an all-time low, and one of the reasons was simply that raiders had absolutely no need to run heroics. Not even laughable, quick ones. They didn't need emblems. They didn't need drops. They didn't need anything; it was just a waste of their time. This is a great boost to the heroic system, and that's good; as I've said in the past, heroics are where you meet future guildies, it's where you try out new specs, it's where you learn to raid. It's important for this to be a vibrant part of the world, and the only way to do that is to actually reward it.

So almost entirely I think it's a good idea.

Where do I think they went wrong? Well, I don't like that both 10 and 25-man drop the same thing. Why? Because I think (at least early on) this can put too much pressure on raiders to have to raid both if they can. In the same way that Kara being a heroism pinata last expansion was somewhat annoying, I think that this could be problematic. I'm not sure what I'd do here; I'd probably have some kind of quest or reward system that had a 1-week lockout and rewarded badges on the first boss killed of a certain name, but didn't after. That way no matter what flavor you choose you'd get the badges, but you couldn't double up on them. You could still run the 10 for loot or whatever, but it wouldn't be as needed.

But really, that's about all I feel is a flaw. If nothing else, raiders know that they completed things months before other people. That alone is achievement enough.


Felkan said...

The other thing this allows us to do is NOT PvP in order to get "caught up" quickly with our guild's current progress level.

That, to me, was the biggest black-eye in the BC days. Once your guild was well past T4 content, you were left with no choice but to PvP for your PvE gear. That was just stupid.

Now, any noob guild member, or an alt, can "solo" (aka PuG) their way into PvE gear. That is great if you ask me.

Looking at the other changes to leveling, etc. I really think Blizzard has something in the works to bring along new players, not sure what, but it certainly seems like they are doing their best to break down those ugly barriers that preset themselves to new players.

Copey said...

Wow. Copey on the front page, what is this world coming to? Anyway, I think it’s a good thing, but was curious about somebody that is much farther in the game then my guild mates and I. I can’t wait, because it will be so much easier to gear people up, and at the same time farm heroics for enchanting mats for the guild. I doubt we will have Ulduar 10 cleared by then, and if we don’t, it will be a nice shot in the arm to help us get over the hump.

I can see what you mean by making people feel forced to run both Naxx 10 and then 25 in the same week, but I look at it like a kind of bonus. My guild, when we really buckle down can one shot Naxx 10 in one evening. Should be no problem later when the patch drops, as we are 5 bosses into Ulduar 10 now. So we can do Naxx one night, then on my own time I can run in a pug of 25 for some extra tokens. Or I can go do heroics, or whatever. I’m pretty happy with the change. And when my hunter hits 80 he may even have a chance to get nice gear too, which would be nice for farming or just playing.

Phil Jackson said...

It's a smart move on Blizzard's part. This point in the expansion, if they didn't make it easier to get new players/characters up to date gear wise, they will most likely just lose those accounts. Blizzard is pretty good at keeping that carrot on a stick just in front of you at all times during this expansion I feel.

Anonymous said...

I completely agree with the post and would like to add that giving emblems for heroics may actually improve the playing of some players. I know of some that geared in Nax without ever having to lrn2play by earning their gear through instances and pvp.
As a casual but serious bear tank, I was just able to tank ZA and Gruhl before the expansion hit,and never ended up tanking the BC end game due to the impossibly slow gear progression.
Enjoying pvp as well is is nice to see that I will be able to get the deadly set with the emblems as well. Dabbling in 3v3 lately has proven that getting the furious weapons would be a pipe dream. Having the opportunity to get gear within 1 tier of previous season players will help level thing out alot.

Jacemora said...

I am all for people getting rewarded for the time they put into playing and these badge changes will actually have me logging on raid off nights where previously I was not even logging in.

Now I have a reason to run 5 mans on my main.

Derrick said...

I'm very happy as well. It provides something to do that's productive when not raiding, it allows potential recruits to gear themselves to a reasonable progression guild leevel reasonably quickly so we can actually replace people when needed without a huge "gear up the newbie" hassle.

Also, I've got so much more to do with my alts!!

Oh, also... Less instance farming! I love beating new content, but I loathe gear farming runs. Now as each new tier comes out, we can drop the old instance like a hot potato, and people can still get that gear. Great!!

Morten said...

Okay guess I need to be the sour grape then..

I think of this as a bad change. I do this because now people will get in days or weeks what I worked months to get. Honestly, I dont care about Blizzard needing to have new players be able to "catch up", with this change, a newly dinged 80 can get in weeks what I worked my arse off in Ulduar to get. Gear is one way of showing how good or how commited you are to the game, just like achivement mounts are.

In other words, I see this as I've bought a car 2 weeks ago for x amount of money. I drive it around happily showing it off and being proud of owning it, mostly because i needed to work hard to get it. Now, one day, lets say its a hot summer day, I drive to the beach. At this beach I suddenly see all kinds of people driving around in exactly the same car as I do, and suddenly, I dont feel very speciel...

Kheldar said...

i have to agree Kalon. its a briliant and much needed overhaul of the emblem system.

as has been said, it will now get some raiders etc back into heroics...we ask people to come and they cba - they are too above heroics...the do not want badges nor loot.

this will get them back into finding them worth running to supplement their raiding.

and it will help guilds who seem to be strugging to recruit and make progress get people upto a higher gear level quicker.

this seems to be a great idea to help just about everyone.

the only naysayers will be those who can raid everything and have raided everything and feel that others who cannot raid for whatever reasons should not be able to get loot etc.

sorry Morten but you are a classic case of someone who apears to look down on other people cant raid or cant raid much. If you have done a raid instance when it was at its hardest and at the appropriate level cap then that should be all that matters, and you know the achievements you got.

And i have to disagree about gear being an indicator of how good you are or how committed. Yes it hopefully means you are not a total numpty but we always seemed to carr a couple of people who were not really 'good' - but we needed numbers so they came along and got loot.

As for committed....lets turn that around and say 'no lifers' ?

It happens all the time in WoW - you still see people at lvl 80 going to BWL or MC or AQ40 to get the achievement? To me its not even close to an achievement to go back to lvl 60 content, and no i've not gone back to any of the raids I did not do - i raided in original wow 40 man but nothing at all in BC.

But if that is what they wish to spend their gaming time on then its upto them.

Blizzard need a continuing, infact expanding player base. They wont get that if people leave due to frustration at the lack of gear or the time it takes to gear up to see raid instances.

On my server there seems to be a real lack of progress in Uldaur. Not enough people spread too thinly around guilds.

This will help speed up the gearing process and stop people burning out, leaving Wow, or maybe moving server making the whole problem even worse.

Good job Blizz.

Please hurry up with thi patch and changes :)

sacrovir said...

A quick reply to the sour grapes.

This isnt really any different to the situation with PVP - there is a rolling progression of gear - but with the added PVE benefit that newer, or slower, players get to see new content quicker or at all.

Those who are elite enough to have the latest gear will move on to have even better gear and still look ├╝ber compared to all else.

Ultimately the game is about having fun and what you can achieve as a team, neither of which this update will change. Saying "it's not fair" really does sound like... well, sour grapes.

Very said...

I had exactly the same thought about this when I first read the PTR notes.

Things like this and world events are what keep those who don't raid Ulduar playing the game... and not WG or Sarth at every time it resets (which I believe they are already tired of). To those who raid this will surely be helpful since it represents a chance to be able fill some offspecc slots.

What needs to be added to this new token system in order to be perfect are some mounts and people will run old content with an extra motivation.

Anonymous said...

being a so called casual player (10-15 hrs a week) it's pretty hard for me to have more than one night a week for raiding (never seen ulduar) because it takes at least 3-4 hrs without being disturbed (family or job reasons).
i'm really looking forward to the new emblem system.
but i also suggest redoing the heroics: why not install a progression path within the heroic instances. utgard keep for item level 170-200 players up to utgard pinnacle for 213-219 players. tuning the hp and damage of the mobs / bosses shouldn't be that much work. so itemlvl 200 player may have to skipp a utgard pinnacle daily due to their equip. no worries in my eyes!
i hated times back in TBC where i never came to see anything further kara and gruul.
(sry for bad english i'm german)

javier said...

Personally i think that this is a too drastic move on Blizz Part.

Let me make 1 thing clear first, Im only Naxx geared and the New heroic gearing will mean i get some shiny new purples too.

I still think that by doing this Blizz aren't really rewarding effort or skill. Why not Make Valorous Drop in Heroics and Naxx 10. The Conquest in Naxx 25 etc.. So basically move everything down 1 step. It gives people access to new gear but still makes you go through the progression of having to do raids and not skipping content. I hope im not right but i just feel that you are going to pug with more "Huntards & DeathNoobs" who think they are great because they have some high tear gear.

On the other hand i cant wait for some T8.5 gear 8)

Clownevil07 said...

This is a great change. The smaller newer guilds, or those peeps dedicated to a guild that just doesnt grow enough, or those peeps with busier lives can still get what they work for. Now for you "Sour Grapes" out there. You managed to get into a large enough raiding gear, peeps who are dedicated or just dont have nothing to do but play WoW in there lives at this time in there life. You still have the satisfaction "been there, done that". And this takes nothing away from you. Everybody wins, on different levels.

Anonymous said...

@ Clownevil07: precisely.

To anyone who feels they are somehow being robbed of their previous effort, I feel like focusing on the gear is going to be a mindset that will almost certainly lead to jealous disappointment if one keeps playing this game.

I enjoy running dungeons. I like to try to learn fights, and do a good job, and see my (small, casual) guild improve its coordination and ability.

If you're in one of those top guilds, then you can continue to keep feeling elite, because you managed to beat the content without having gear made more easily available to you, or because the fights were harder, or whatever. Go right ahead and feel smug; you've earned the chance to.

The rest of us will take our new easier-earned loot, and then go on to beat the challenges that we couldn't before (or in some cases, people still won't manage it without help or severely overgearing), while we keep trying to improve so hopefully we can try beating the next new content before it gets nerfed too hard. But at least we'll get to see it, even if we needed help.

Bulamis said...

From my understanding Triumph badges would only be from the Daily quests and 25 man modes for Colliseum. (And possibly 10 Hard)
But not from 10 Normal or anything else?

(I.e. that's a lot of dailies to gear up?)

Taran said...

To those who DON'T like this change: there is virtually zero logic to that point of view. Certainly you're entitled to your opinion, but take a closer look at it:

1. This is a game. Playing it is supposed to be fun. Whether you agree with that or not, Blizzard has meant for this to be entertainment, not a job. By saying you're upset that other players can get the same gear you got without doing the "work," you're saying that the process of getting the gear was not fun. Is that true?

2. Since this is a game, your "accomplishments" (and those of anyone else who plays WoW) are essentially meaningless in real life terms. But if you must attach meaning to them, you can take pride in the fact that you accomplished these things when it was a lot harder to accomplish them. This change does nothing to diminish your status as a good player in a good guild.

The hours and hours you spent learning Ulduar content were fun, right? And you beat the content without the consolation prizes, right? So be happy, keep playing, and don't begrudge other players experiencing the same things you did.

Anonymous said...

I agree almost entirely. I've only been playing wow for six months, and hit 80 two months ago. In that time, I have completely geared through heroics and most 10-man Naxx. At this point I do heroics for fun, but there is no gear I can buy with any currency I have(except honor for pvp gear) that is better than what I have. This is incredibly frustrating. The change will allow me to gear up and keep up so I can continue to perform respectably even though I can't raid every night until the wee hours.

Where I disagree is that I can see the point of view that the entire 3.2 patch just makes the game so much easier, yet again, for all those evil noobs to have the game handed to them. As you say though, they may have the gear, but still be lousy players. I also think the patch further marginalizes content through Outland except as a leveling playground.

The flip side is that if/when I decide to level an alt, these new changes, plus a couple of heirloom pieces, will make it far less odious.