World of Warcraft previews its clever new party sync system

This shindig is going to be a rager

    
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By all indications, World of Warcraft’s Patch 8.2.5 is on the horizon, and when it arrives on the servers, it’s going to bring one of the most group-friendly tools that the game has ever seen: party sync.

Basically, party sync takes an entire group and arranges it so that every member is put in the same quest state. This way friends can go on quests together, even if one has already finished a mission before. Want to go back and re-do a mission for laughs or a specific reward? If you have a pal who hasn’t done it yet, now you can.

Even better, the party sync system has the ability to temporarily lower high-level characters to their comrades’ level. Blizzard’s also tossing in a new recruit-a-friend panel that handles the party sync system. If this is something you’ll want to do when the patch goes live in a few weeks, you should probably read up on the instructions to get a feel for how all of this works.

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strangesands

Now, if only they could devise a dungeon finder that allows people with the same interests to group: looting, rp, casual, speed run, social.

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Baemir

Looks like Retail wins again.

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Vinnie travi

Said no one ever

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Baemir

Idk, plenty of people on other sites are begging for this to be implemented in Classic lol. Looks like the vanilla experience wasn’t so great after all.

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Utakata

Err…to each their own here! As some are still very much enjoying Classic. While there’s still plenty of love for Retail. And I strongly suspect there are many, like a friend of mine…who are enjoying both versions. So let’s cart that dead horse off to which version is better to the glue factory where it should belong! Just saying.

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Loopy

This is a really neat feature and I honestly wish the original game had this from the get-go. The only thing is that retail WoW doesn’t really need grouping for most of its leveling content. I guess the rewards for the higher level characters are incentive enough.

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Roger Melly

oh you retailers , you just have to have it all handed to you without doing any work :P

lol .

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Utakata

Dat Poe’s Law…

…lol. o.O

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Vinnie travi

This would be a great thing if you actually had group quests or any need at all to be in a group while questing. I hope they learn from classic and add group only quests and areas with packs of mobs that would be very difficult to solo. Group quests are one of my best memories form Lotro, those old book quests were a blast, now everything in every game is a solo borefest. Thats why Classic is so refreshing, it at least brings back some group content to MMO’s

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Richard de Leon III

For a few of us it wasnt, especially when we were trying to catch up to the main population. Group quests are great when everyone is on a level footing. I couldnt find anyone to do group quests when i was leveling most mmos since I took my time. I’d rather all content be solo and have some minor scaling against groups like Retail WoW has currently.

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Vinnie travi

I understand your frustration but it is that mindset that has destroyed MMO’s. I know in Lotro the group quests were hard to get done, especially during daytime. My general rule was solo during day and do group stuff in primetime. Sometimes it might take a few days to get a group, doesn’t mean you can do other things until you get a group going.

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Jeremy Barnes

What a dumb idea. I’m glad MMOs have advanced. Some people don’t have an option to play in prime time.

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Vinnie travi

They haven’t advanced. They have become single player games. I work nights as well so I had 1 night a week that I could play. So I made sure to get those quests done on that day. There are only a few Group quests so it isn’t like you have nothing to do while waiting for a group.

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Lily Cheng

So much this, this is exactly what MMO’s have become. I don’t understand why all the people who want to play single player games don’t just…um…play single player games?

What the heck is the point of jamming thousands of people into the same server if nobody actually wants to play with each other? Makes no sense.

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Richard de Leon III

Because MMOs tend to have a ton of content that people want to enjoy, tho not necessarily be reliant on waiting for another warm body to do it. If blizzard releases WoW as a single player game, with ALL the same content, I’ll bet people would buy it and never come online.

Thats part of the magic of old lan-based rpg games, fully soloable, but you can bring friends (aka NWN 1 and 2 for example).

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Bruno Brito

My general rule was solo during day and do group stuff in primetime. Sometimes it might take a few days to get a group, doesn’t mean you can do other things until you get a group going.

So, you don’t have anything better to do with that time? Like…Work?

Got it.

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Richard de Leon III

Thats the mindset that saved MMOs, people seem to forget before casual changes mmos were a niche product that never exceeded a quarter of a mil population with EQ1. If wow didnt happen there’s a good chance the whole mmo industry wouldve either stagnated or wasted away.

The trick is finding the right balance and knowing where to stop. For me, Retail WoW is about as good as it gets sharing the spotlight between casual and hardcore play.

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Lily Cheng

And the initial version of WoW wasn’t built with the single player mindset that it is today and look how many people it attracted… You seem to just be contradicting yourself there.

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Richard de Leon III

It had more casual content than all of its competitors at the time and just got more accessible as time went on. My point is perfectly valid. By being easier to get into, its population exploded beyond the 250k mmo players than EQ1 attracted at the time.

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Utakata

They maybe your former “good memories”, they’re not mine. So speak for yourself. Thnkx!

Also keep in mind, the current set up in Retail encourages players to co-operate more without having to go through any formality of finding a group. While in Classic currently, there are enough players levelling is not difficult to find a group even when forced to go through the formalities. Plus players in Classic can level somewhere else and come back to do the group content without grouping if they so wish. Can’t easily do that in Retail with level scaling. So there’s that. /shrug

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Joey

So removing all the out door group content for leveling was the solution? So glad they gave players options. Pretty much all MMOs followed WoW in this regard too.

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Utakata

They’ve never removed all group content, forced or otherwise. Nor the ability to group, which is still very much optional. And they have no plans to change this as far as the pigtails and myself are aware.

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Richard de Leon III

Personally I’d rather all MMOs made everyone soloable, but scale difficulty the larger the group and increase the rewards appropriately. But thats just me.

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Utakata

To be fair though, there’s lots to be solo’d in Classic. And more so in Retail…well, because there’s way more content. :)

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Randy Savage

Blizzard has never been all that innovative. They’ve always taken ideas they didn’t come up with and either improved on them or just gave them more polish. But I’m not sure their version of party sync qualifies as either more improved or more polished. And as usual, they’re late to the party… no pun intended

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Malcolm Swoboda

To be fair, its coming not to a 8.0, nor 8.2, but a 8.2.5, merely as accompaniment to Recruit-A-Friend overhaul. More innovative/improved/polished changes could come later on.

What I can say is improved here, is that sync to whatever status another player is on. I can’t say there is no other game with this, but certainly none that I’ve played.

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Hikari Kenzaki

So… like GW2, but with more enforced rules that are likely not going to please anyone.
But hey, that whole level scaling and sidekicking is super innovative. Guess it took making WoW Classic to learn from 2004.

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thalendor

I will be glad to see this in the game. Right now, I feel the questing system in WoW is downright hostile to grouping, with the need to keep two characters in lockstep in order for them to both benefit or, in some cases, even see each other due to phasing. While I still feel something like GW2 solves this problem better, without making a massive change to how world content works in WoW, this seems like a good solution.