First and foremost, I’d like to commend you on making a very, very pretty expansion. It’s delightful to look at with its bright colors and lush greenery. I don’t even mind how racially insensitive it is, but then, I’m not Asian. I’ll let them take you task for that. Anyway, the pandas aren’t really my cup of tea as a race, but they’re cute with their paunchy bellies and — yeah, I’ll admit it — AWESOME DANCES. You also did a kick-ass job on the soundtrack; the score is SERIOUSLY astounding. From the infectious tavern music to the sweeping, moody tracks out in Vale, Mists is a feast for the ears.
Aesthetically speaking, Blizzard, you have knocked it out of the park here. High five.
For the most part, leveling improved this expansion, too. It wasn’t the awful depth perception problem of Vashj’ir from Cata, nor was it the dredges of wherever the hell Stonecore was. (That zone sucked. For serious.) I loved Jade Forest, Krasarang, Kun-Lai, and Vale. They’re all great fun even if I think some of the early mobs are overtuned for characters that aren’t epically geared (some alts may get creamed in the early goings of JF.) However, the last two zones — Townlong Steppes and Dread Wastes — were a miss for me. Big time. TS is massively overtuned in parts, especially the bug quests that give you your initial Shadowpan rep. The NPCs you bring along to do the quests? More a hindrance than a help with how much they aggro and the damage they don’t do. Also, the mobs hit ridiculously hard, to the point my level 90 cat druid had a hard time surviving level 88 quests without all her cooldowns. Dread Wastes is guilty of a lot of that same stuff, plus it’s ugly as sin, so I found I enjoyed it even less than TS if that was even possible.
What else? OH, RIGHT. THE POST 90 EXPERIENCE.
I dunno where it was said or who said it, but I recall some dev somewhere promising that this expansion would be less grindy than Cata. Whoever you are, dev, you should be drawn and quartered for making a promise you couldn’t keep. Holy crap, Blizzard. Seriously? So let me get this straight. To get good gear, I have to grind dungeons. If I don’t get the drops I need in the dungeons, I can accrue justice and valor points to purchase those upgrades. BUT. BUT! In order to spend those points, I have to grind up the rep with various factions for the pieces. (And they’re not fun grinds like the Tillers grind – they’re just boring kill and collect quests.) In order to even be allowed to grind that rep, I have to grind this Golden Lotus rep to revered first, which is a congested quest zone with people fighting for mobs. On a bad day during peak hours? Those fifteen or so quests can take me an hour. And I have to do that every day for almost a month just to be allowed to do more dailies to get a single piece of gear. I have to repeat this process for, like, four or five factions once said piece of gear is acquired to get the rest of my stuff.
No. Screw you, no. Screw you twice because if I want to gear my alts, you’re going to make me do it /all over again/ because the rep doesn’t transfer on account. (Let’s not even get into professions. I can’t have nice things without doing these dailies, so that means I’m stuck with generic, crappy trade skills unless I give into a lazy, grindy design. Mind, I already had to invest time and resources to get said professions to 600, but I guess that doesn’t matter. What matters is slowing down my progression, right?)
The ONLY THING keeping me around at this point is a great community, Raid Finder, and pvp. I can’t find much reason to do the dungeon challenges because (SORRY) transmog epeen gear doesn’t lure me, nor do scenarios that are mostly lootless and pointless. Sooner or later (and at this rate I’m predicting sooner) I’m going to grow bored with the limited draws I do have and move on. When that happens, Blizzard, you can give your grindy design to someone else. I’m sure some other player will be more than happy to hand you fifteen bucks a month to come home from work to log on . . . to go back to work.
A Disappointed Player