Global Chat: WoW Classic impressions mega-compilation

    
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Very mature.

When World of Warcraft launches, the world stops to pay attention.

The recent release of WoW Classic didn’t just pull in hundreds of thousands of players onto ever-expanding servers — it also became the talking point of the MMO blogosphere. Everyone seemed to either be playing it or sporting an opinion of it. We’ve done three opinion pieces ourselves – a top 10 list, an impressions piece, and even a roleplay piece.

Now we’ve compiled a mega-compilation of thoughts, first impressions, last deaths, nostalgia goggles, directions to Mankrik’s wife, complaints, exclamations, joys, and trials for you to digest here. So let’s dig into it!

Aternus Gaming

“For now, Classic is a nice distraction. It has its flaws but, for the time being, a very active community and tons of people playing. I will probably keep you updated as I keep playing this game but I’m not sure if I have the patience to get all the way to level 60. I guess time will tell.”

Kaylriene 

“To current WoW fans, blissfully unaware of progression servers or the experience of relived expansion servers in other MMOs, the idea of rolling out TBC/Wrath is a binary question – do they or don’t they? However, in the decision tree of that process, it is the first step of many.”

WoW Adventurer

“Perhaps the better question is, am I having fun? It’s the oddest conundrum, because yes, and no. I’ve been trying to put my finger on it and just when I think I’ve figured it out, I find new things about both versions to love and hate. You see there are things I like about Classic WoW that I LOATHE about live WoW. So why would I enjoy the mechanic in one game and not the other?”

Tales of the Aggronaut

“However if you have to tell a story about how you weaved your way through a camp carefully body pulling enemies, and then getting completely overwhelmed right before you got to the final boss. That is a tale of defeat but it is an interesting tale nonetheless, and I have already had several versions of this tale in my memory.”

Watching Snow Fall

“So what do I remember that is still awesome? The world is huge! I mean just the thought of running from place to place, scares me. The starting area has the best music, the quests are still fun. Very basic gameplay here, but it’s been 15 years, not to mention none of us wanted it to change at all. We got the exact carbon copy of what the game was like then.”

Brave Tank

“It started raining in the game yesterday and someone said in chat, “It’s so beautiful” – I couldn’t have agreed more. And that’s the other thing – the starter zone chat has been amazing. It’s  clear people are excited about being back.  For some people of course it’s their first time. Many were asking how to do such and such and experienced folk were being helpful in return –  actually answering questions!”

Hardcore Casual

“There is beauty in the simplicity of those quests, and how while doing them you can focus more of your attention on the tiny details of the world you are playing in. This is all especially true in a themepark MMO like WoW, where the core gameplay loop is simple and enjoyable, but the real ‘meat’ of the game is the social aspect and doing all of your activities in a virtual world.”

Battle Stance

WoW Classic launched… and I was there. Stayed up until midnight, logged in without problems 3 minutes late and managed to get to Level 6 after 2:30 hours. Today I also mostly played WoW Classic and finished Mulgore.”

Nerdy Bookahs

“I am mostly playing with the old graphics. Not sure which settings I’ve tweaked. But the shadows are original WoW Classic. Just one blob under the character! I remember that around that time back then, games appeared that had more realistic shadows and I always thought: I don’t need them. The blob is fine!”

SparkoMarkoGaming

“After logging on, I spent a couple of hours questing, I had no problem in the staring area but I did learn not to take on more than 1 mob at a time, occasionally a second mob would join in and while manageable, I did need to be careful and heal myself.”

Syrco Owl

WoW now is very different from what it was in vanilla and also very different from what it was when I started. I look forward to seeing the old Azeroth again, how it was pre-Cataclysm, leveling and gearing like it used to be. Everything is so easy in WoW now, you can level up so fast, it is easy to earn gold, the map will tell you where the quests are and you don’t have to do much to get good gear.”

Gnomecore

“I’d never play Classic in favor of retail. And only in case of a lull or after a day’s worth of raiding I’d launch it to have a braindead, relaxed gameplay. Clumsy, ugly, tedious gameplay. Exactly a tourist mode – nothing more, nothing less.”

Nomadic Gamers Eh?

“It’s great seeing so many people, but general chat is already getting annoying. It seems like there is a huge swath of people who dislike the retail version of the game and are very vocal that no one should still be playing it because it’s absolutely horrid.”

Stabbed Up

“Perhaps I’m the ideal audience. I both like the gameplay and would play it and enjoy it had I never experienced it before. And I also get very strong nostalgia vibes. I suppose I acquired a mastery 14 years ago that wouldn’t have otherwise had any relevance and certainly doesn’t carry over into the modern retail game.”

Coffee Cakes and Crits

“Let us all hope that our designers take an interest in Classic and pick up some ideas on what made the original so exciting to play. Then you’d come home eager to log in because you had a plan of things to get done!”

Dragon Chasers

“Going back to WoW, visiting those zones… it would just be sad for me. Those friends are gone and even if I could find them, it’d be like that awkwardness you feel at a school reunion. People change over time.”

Inventory Full

“Other than that, a lot of things were fun. Animations were excellent and I couldn’t help thinking the spell effects were bigger and more impressive than I was used to on Live. That can’t be true, surely? I also spent five minutes or more watching a rabbit. It had unpredictable and non-repetitive pathing, sprayed snow as it hopped and left a varying trail of paw prints. That seems incredibly sophisticated for 2005. Anyone know if it’s authentic Vanilla bunny behavior?”

Blessing of Kings

“It’s possible that I was one of the first to be assigned to a fresh layer, as it seemed like there were more people as time went on, and chat became livelier. One positive about the chat is that people seemed disinclined to talk about current WoW. Another amusing thing about Mulgore chat is that people keep losing the ghost wolf for the Rite of Vision escort quest, and have to be directed by chat to the cave with the quest.”

The Ancient Gaming Noob

“I don’t know if this was simply RP server behavior… lots of people in line had set themselves to walk rather than run, so we did so as well…or if this was a manifestation of what I have observed in other retro server experiences, where everybody is simply so happy to be there that they feel cooperative, but we were willing to go along with that.”

Endgame Variable

“I saw the seething masses of people in the starter zone. I recorded some video. I took some screenshots. I saw the ‘launch day spectacle.’ I’ve sated my curiosity. But mostly I wasted 15 bucks. I’ll log in from time to time but I can’t even imagine playing this game long-term.”

Galumphing

“One thing I noticed far more was the sound design. Along with the fantastically spooky music and muffled screams of the the intro, the entire zone pulses with a super low heartbeat which you don’t notice until you stop and listen for a few moments. The subtle tension that adds is terrific.”

GamingSF

“My memory of WoW’s game systems kicked in at some point and I remembered how much more of a thing weapon speed was back then. My poor Paladin’s two-handed hammer was very, very slow at 2.98 seconds per swing. So his chance of a mob remaining untapped while he wound up to swing at the thing was very poor indeed.”

I’m Not Squishy

“I don’t know what I was expecting but it certainly wasn’t to burst our laughing. There was something just so funny about the sheer amount of characters running around. I joined the crowds for wolf slaying. Fighting for each spawn to collect a meager 8 meat. After 20 minutes I returned with my hard-won prize and settled in to do some more.”

ECTmmo.com

“I was in a queue of over 6k people and somehow got in within the first five minutes. I had to log out for a few and hopped on later to try to play but the lag is so terrible that I couldn’t even play. Things will settle down in time. My son has gotten quite a bit ahead of me but maybe I can catch up tomorrow! It is quite annoying not to be able to really play but it is nice to see classic WoW so well received. ”

Parallel Context

“Finally, the last question: am I enjoying myself? Yes. Absolutely yes. Active –and chatty– zones, old school finding of quests, difficult combat, and random kindness of strangers is a wonderful thing to see. Active guild recruitment is another thing that’s nice as well, even though I haven’t exactly pulled the trigger on anything yet.”

Every day there are tons of terrific, insightful, and unusual articles posted across the MMO gaming blogosphere — and every day, Justin reads as many as he can. Global Chat is a sampling of noteworthy essays, rants, and guides from the past few weeks of MMO discourse.

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styopa

It’s funny how mixed emotions are about this, when you consider the paroxysms of joy that met the CoH retro “release” and the overwhelming positive public reaction (I mean c’mon, CoH didn’t fill what, 20 servers with queues of 150,000+ on opening week?)

Why are people so hesitant on this one?
Is it because they got their nostalgia fix in CoH?
Is it because they have issues with Blizzard?
Is it side-taking in the weird “with us or against us” Classic vs Retail binary crap?

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Aluminum Man

I’d say the key difference here is that CoH has been gone since late 2012 while WoW has been going all that time.

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TherecDaMage .

I have realized what I missed about classic that no longer exists in retail WoW. It’s the stories.

No I don’t mean the lore. I mean the adventures that you would form with a group because the quests were too hard or confusing to complete alone. The new friends you’d make as a part of talking to players as you spammed trade chat looking for that tank for the dungeon run.

Retail WoW has become so easy and automated for the sake of convenience that there is no interaction anymore. Leveling requires no communication. LFG and LFR make raids and dungeons automated. Any hard quest is nullified by the group quest system. Nobody says a word to each other during these interactions unless people die and then it’s negative. People go in, get their loot, and leave. It’s basically become a solo game unless you’re part of a raid team. The MMORPG of WoW has turned into an RPG with other people around. Classic still feels like I’m part of a huge group of people trying to complete epic goals.

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Hirku

Curiosity finally got me to buy a month and see for myself what all the fuss is about. So far it’s fine, not even close to replacing my regular game but still a fun MMO vacation and history lesson.

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Mallus

Got my hunter to 30 and quit playing. The game is boring, my hunters rotation: send pet, sting, auto shot. There’s so much grinding, so much walking and the lack of quality of life fixes (for example group finder) is just too much for me. I wish everyone the best of luck in pursuit of their classic goals but it’s just not for me.

hurbster
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hurbster

Top quality gaming, ’nuff said.

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Utakata

Goodness some of those comments are sporting rose tinted glasses, lol. No, Classic isn’t any or more less social than it is now. The current retail world is much, much bigger. As for “easier” leveling, if they are planning to do all 120 levels like that currently, I strongly suspect this quaint notion will wear thin quickly.

So let’s allow the pigtails myth bust some of those first time experience on Classic WoW for the long moment…

1) This isn’t really Vanilla, but a pasted together facsimile of. As it seems a combination of several different patch releases. You’ll notice that all major cities have AH’s, when I started playing it was only one AH per faction. At the same time, there is no hidden quest option in the UI, yet when I was first playing it there was. Etc…

2) Players are there for entirely different reasons in Classic than they where in Vanilla. And I strongly suspect mainly for the nostalgia. Different vibes for different times.

3) My memory of Vanilla wasn’t one of community, Kumbaya and socialization. It was many times more toxic, mean spirited and self interested. With many LFG barkers on every channel looking for tanks and healers that didn’t want to tank or heal. You can’t wash that history away by pretending we’re all one big happy Classic family today.

4) Fourthly, the current economy of retail has had 15 years to accumulate wealth, even without all the incentives and removal of spell cost upgrades. Is that really the fault of retail?

5) Do players really want some of those asinine aspects of Vanilla to creep back into retail? I’ll bet dollars to donuts players will be rioting with pitch folks in Irvine if they did that. So no…

…let’s enjoy Classic for what it is, without the embracing very bad ideas of wanting the entire game to go back there.

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Don Nascimento

Classic wow is based off of patch 1.12 when the auction houses were linked (Stormwind, Ironforge). The one auction house per faction was when it was first released. This is not 2004 WoW, it is 2006 WoW, right before the TBC launch.

Say what you want but the facts are facts, people have been much nicer in Classic. I think everyone is just happy they are playing it! I have made 4 Battlenet friends in one week. I made one Battlenet friend in one year on retail.

Name an asinine aspect of vanilla that people would want in retail?

hurbster
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hurbster

Aye, chat has been good on the most part.

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Utakata

“Say what you want but the facts are facts…”

#FactualFacts

“Name an asinine aspect of vanilla that people would want in retail?”

Hunter dead zones. Your point?

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Utakata

“I know those who are painting an overly rosy view of Vanilla bother you…but let them have their fun in Classic. No need go on about it like a broken record at times. That’s just cramping style, Uta.”

Oh okays…I’ll let the pigtails chill a bit on this. Sorry about that. :(

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Don Nascimento

Actually really its more like whats your point? You are overstating the obvious. Of course there are many small aspects of vanilla that are not wanted in retail.

But I will tell you this, if having a dead zone means I get to be both ranged and melee as a hunter at the same time, then bring it on.

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G0dl355

What more can be said that hasn’t already? The game remains top viewed in streams, queues are still high on most servers, nobody seems to be quitting. Slowed down by queues and real life? sure. But how many “i quit, retail is better” posts have you really seen? I’ve seen zero.

IMHO the success of Classic could and should change retail.

mystwen
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mystwen

I’ve been back to the starting zone twice to give away decent low-level gear I picked up farming linen or leather. Also gave each one a silver. I have over 40 silver now…I’m rich!

Pretty soon I’ll make some linen bags to give away. I remember the kindness of strangers back when I played the original. Pay it forward!

Polyanna
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Polyanna

Monday at the end of the long weekend, I wound up in a five-man random group farming gnolls in the ass end of Redridge Mountains, and then well decided to do the quest to kill a boss at the top of this tower.

Made it almost to the top and got overwhelmed by adds we didn’t see hiding on the top floor. Rest of the team went down after a valiant struggle, and as they’re all laying there waiting for me to die, I see “this pally is going to die,” in party chat, and right after a /w from the bear druid, “You got this, don’t listen to them.” Finally killed it before getting wrecked by respawns.

We all ghost back to the top floor, but the druid rezzed accidently outside and had to run back again. Finally back in position we all RP sit on the chairs handily placed. Kill adds one at a time, and then the boss spawns with two minions. Buff up and the druid just says, “Ima bear heal me please.” Spamming Holy Light on the bear until I’m almost OOM, BOP to buy one more solid heal. Mana’s all gone, so it’s time to Hail Mary with Lay on Hands. One add is down. No mana. Time to do what Pally does best and Auto Attack to Victory.

Boss goes down just before the bear runs out of health and we manage to finish off the adds. EVERYONE STILL ALIVE. Holy shit we did it. “Epic Quest” someone pipes up in chat. We run back down slaughtering everything in our way. “WE DID IT. YOU IN OUR HOUSE NOW.”

I’ve led heroic raiding guilds from zero to AOTC in retail over two expansions and eight tiers, and I was proud of what we did, but none of our kills felt like as much of a win as that bastard at the top of the tower in a piss ant level 20 zone.

Best time I’ve had in this game — in any game — in absolute ages. That’s what Classic is to me.

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Loopy

It’s been a week now, and so far none of my friends have quit – which is promising, especially given the fact that most of them are not WoW fans (both past and current).

As for myself, i’m still having a blast. If there is one thing to gripe about it’s that i’m currently in the main leveling wave – majority of people on my server are in my level range resulting in annoyingly long hunts for quest mobs and items. So i can either speed up and get ahead of the curve, or slow down and let the main wave pass so i can quest in peace. The former will piss off my casual friends and the latter will cause me to have much longer wait times for group quests and dungeons. Sounds like a first world problem..

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johnwillo

Yeah, I’m thinking of leveling an alt for a little bit, to let the crest of the wave move on, before returning to my first character. I generally don’t bother with instances, so less of a problem there.