Break’s over, back on your heads*

I’ve been enjoying a little game down time for a few days, due to a slight case of flu that turned into viral pneumonia, which trust me is absolutely not something you want to get. On the mend now, but it is an excruciatingly slow process.

And speaking of excruciatingly slow ….

One of the things I really liked about LFR in 6.0 was that it didn’t pretend to be a real raid. It was basically the comic book graphic novel version of War and Peace. This was by design. You go in, you see the layout of Highmaul and each boss area, you experience the pre-school version of the major mechanics, you kill the boss, boom you’re done. In and out of each wing in 15-30 minutes. I could easily run my 4 level 100s through it by Wednesday each week.

For raiders, it was a quick way to gather quest tokens if your actual progression team was not at the point of clearing every week. It was a terrific practice arena for those alts you were working on to get raid-ready. In fact, if your real raid team was having some problems with mechanics, you could go into LFR alone or in a group and practice some techniques, because pretty much no matter what you did, you were going to down the boss. Since there were relatively few wipes, the frustration levels were way down and consequently most people were — gasp — patient, helpful, and polite. It was perfect for LFR. Yes, yes, I know there were some who complained it was “too easy,” but really what is the point of making LFR difficult? 25 strangers, who will almost certainly never raid together again, are just never going to be capable of executing even semi-complicated mechanics. I offer as People’s Exhibit 1:  Durumu the (Best) Forgotten.

The whole point of LFR in this expansion — or so Blizz claimed — was to function as tourist mode for introduction to raiding. There is just no upside to making it difficult and frustrating. Anyone who thinks it is too easy and insults their finely tuned sense of l33tness doesn’t have to run it. IF Blizz is going to keep LFR as a raid mode (whether or not they should is a discussion for another day), then I submit that the Highmaul LFR model was pretty close to perfect. (Imperator Mar’gok was borderline but I will give them a pass on that one. I can see making a slight exception for a final boss.)

But, as usual, Blizz could not resist snatching failure from the jaws of success. Along came Black Rock Foundry, and the LFR party was over. It was back to a mind- and soul-numbing grind if you wanted to run LFR. BRF mechanics are complex and boss encounters are far too long. Player frustration is causing some of the traditional toxic LFR atmospheres once again. Worse, the failure point for some bosses — looking at you, Iron Maidens — comes ONLY AT THE END OF AN ALREADY INSANELY LONG ENCOUNTER. I mean for crying out loud Blizz, couldn’t you at least engineer the failure point to come early in the encounter?

It generally takes me an hour or more to run one wing of BRF in LFR. Even without the final boss, which comes out tomorrow, that means 12 hours to run 4 characters through. 12 hours a week just to run LFR??? Not gonna happen. Given all the other worthless but semi-required time sinks in WoD, what this means is that I am giving up on running LFR on my alts. Which in turn means I will have to give up hopes of getting the legendary ring on those alts.

The LFR honeymoon, it seems, is over.

This is yet another example of how Blizz’s development philosophy for WoD has had a huge unintended consequence of really discouraging alt play. (At least I hope it is unintended …) They had it right for HM LFR, why oh why did they have to screw it up for BRF?

Ok, for those of you who have never heard the ancient joke behind this phrase, here it is: A guy dies, and as he had not led a particularly exemplary life, he arrives in Hell for processing. As he is getting the introductory tour, he is shown what appears to be a food service area. The “employees” are all sitting around drinking coffee at nice tables, although the floor is covered in what appears to be about six inches of shit. The new guy is relieved, thinks well maybe this won’t be so bad after all. At this point there is an announcement over the loudspeaker: “Attention! Break’s over, back on your heads.” 

About Fiannor
I have a day job but escape by playing WoW. I love playing a hunter, and my Lake Wobegonian goal is to become "above average" at it.

3 Responses to Break’s over, back on your heads*

  1. I hope you are feeling better and the best soon.
    My first thought, in response, was allowing for at least a week of grace. Blackhand scares me, I fear I’ll be in there one a wipe-fest and see how toxic it can get — but the next week it will be easier.
    Still, your main point is time. Even the first wing in BRF is a long slog.
    If I were the King of Blizzard, I’d delete all of the trash. The run is long enough already.

  2. Fiannor says:

    Getting rid of most of the trash would definitely help. As you say, the run is long enough already. Blizz increased the trash annoyance, imo, when they designed it so no matter which wing you are running, you have to clear the same initial trash. I tend to try and chain BRF runs, and I am mightily sick of that same bunch of entrance trash by the third time I run it.

    • And …. we get what we want! Blackhand had ONE trash mob and a free run down the hallway. We wiped once.
      Now .. if I could just get more elemental stones ….

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