Wednesday, September 27, 2023

A Side-Eye at 4Chan Rumors

I'm not exactly a fan of 4Chan.

Okay, that's not news; the few times I've ever been over there I've come out of that place and felt like I needed a shower, not to mention a full AV system scan of my PC*.

That being said, someone claiming to be a Blizzard insider posted some "leaks", and it was quickly picked up and distributed via Reddit:

You'll have to click on this and get to the original
if you want to be able to read it.
From Reddit (and, you know, that place).

Some of this appears to me to be blatantly false.

I mean, the whole "Cataclysm Classic is not in the works" is not the case. The surveys that Blizz put out --and I'm one of the recipients about 9 months ago-- all indicated that Cataclysm Classic was a done deal. There were no options in the survey I received to say "I'm not playing Cata Classic". It was all about "what features did you like in Cataclysm that you're looking forward to in Cata Classic". One of the items, interestingly enough, that wasn't even an option was "the World revamp". I kind of expected that to at least be there, but I was surprised when that wasn't even on the list of items to look forward to.

Another item that I consider to be false is the interest that Microsoft has in "breaking up Blizzard". Now, I would totally agree with Microsoft deciding to move toward a more work-from-home environment and selling off some of Blizzard's high cost property in California, but breaking them up completely? I don't think we're at that point yet. I could see Diablo Immortal (or is that Immoral?) being moved over to King, because it's a mobile title and it should go to the mobile studio, but Blizzard's classic properties will, for the near future, stay within the Blizzard house. Judging by how Microsoft has handled Zenimax, as in "they didn't touch it at all", I presume they'll do the same for Activision Blizzard. At least at first.

That being said, some of these assertions do ring true. 

The most obvious one to me, and probably drives certain Retail purists nuts**, is that "WoW Classic has moder [sp] players than Retail World of Warcraft right now."

I mean, duh. Between Hardcore Challenge servers --which are always full-- and the steady play of people in Era and Wrath Classic, Retail's appeal is to a smaller slice of the overall WoW pie. 

Another item I find to be (mostly) true is the assertion that "Dragonflight is the remains of a cancelled mobile game co produced with chinese [sp] partners that was bolted onto World of Warcraft to pad a massive gap after the catastrophic response to patch 9.1. This lead to a ship [sp?] in tone that the players have noticed and found off putting." Oh, not that all of Dragonflight is from a mobile game, but that the Dragonriding portion is. Given how much promotion that Dragonriding has gotten --and continues to get-- it's pretty obvious it's a core part of Retail's experience right now. If you told me that the Crafting Orders system is also from a WoW themed mobile game, I'd believe that one as well. I could easily see a WoW Dragonriding mobile game, with Crafting Orders being a way to "improve" your dragon and provide an impetus for microtransactions. As for the change in tone, well... people have been complaining about the ever increasing power of the "big bads" in Retail WoW, and Dragonflight (at least at first) seemed like a bit of a soft reset in that area. If the Retail community in general is conditioned to fight "the big bad that the previous big bad was scared of", then Dragonflight definitely can be off-putting. 

But hey, if nothing else, this little kernel of.... something.... from 4Chan got me interested enough to post about it.

*I would set it up and let it run overnight and check in the morning.

**I'm pretty sure that if I say his name three times, like Beetlejuice, he'll appear and tell me that I'm an idiot for liking an old version of the game. So, I'm going to keep my mouth shut in that regard. At least Gevlon won't suddenly appear and rain on everybody's parade, since we're all slackers to him.


  1. Interesting set of rumors for sure. I'm kind of waiting for Blizzard to stop being awful to it's employees before I sub up and check things out again (perhaps a fool's criteria). I hope that maybe the MS acquisition will help with that. England was the last major barrier, and it looks like they are willing to sign off on it soon.

    I wouldn't be all that surprised to see the Wrath Era be at least as popular as retail on it's own merits. Add the hardcore servers to that, and I find it easy to believe that classic has more players than retail. I hope there are at least a few permanent Wrath servers going forward.

    I was actually most active in WoW during Cataclysm and liked it quite a bit at the time. However, with years of hindsight I can see that Wrath was probably the overall peak of the game, before they started sanding, then later hacking, off all the depth that made the game really sticky.

    Modern retail plays more like a lobby dungeon runner than anything else. I have next to zero interest in it. I might stick my head in once in a while because it comes for free with classic, but it's not a game I would ever get heavily invested in.

    1. You're not the only person I've known who mentioned that Retail is more of a lobby dungeon runner these days. I can't disagree with that contention, especially the way instances are designed: both Mythic+ and dungeon queues emphasize a cadence of a few trash packs -> boss -> a few trash packs -> boss -> a few trash packs -> optional boss/event -> few trash packs -> final boss. The days of a gigantic, sprawling instance that mimics a city or a haunted keep/mansion or even an underground city are long gone. Speed, gear, and badges/rewards are what's emphasized in an instance, not exploration, wonder, or story.

      My questing buddy and I, operating as a party of two (Mage/Hunter), have been able to do a lot of exploration in 5-person dungeons at level in Classic Era, and we've had a blast merely taking our time and working our way through instances such as Maraudon, Scarlet Monastery, Gnomeregan, and Zul'Farrak. We typically hit a hard wall in several of them that end up needing a healer to make it to the end, but it's still been great fun just being an explorer again in all of these older instances.