Sunday, 1 March 2015

So "Patch" 6.1 is here.......

As promised last week, this week up I am going to attempt to look at patch 6.1 without being uber negative. Suffice to say there is a fair amount of negative feedback floating around the net at the moment. In all honesty while some of it is warranted, 6.1 is not as bad as people make out.

So to jump in what is 6.1? Well the numbering denotes that this is the first major patch of the WoD (6.0) era. Unfortunately compared to previous patches in the prior expansions, 6.1 has no meaningful content. It does provide a lot of features and quality of life changes, I like pretty much all of the features except maybe the selfie camera. The heirloom tab is fantastic the mount u get is rubbish though.... Twitter integration while a bit odd is still useful and it may get me to post more screenshots so win there. A lot of the Garrison changes are nice but not spectacular; being able to press one button to create all work orders is a massive boost.

Yet however I choose to talk up these features, I can't hide the elephant in the room. The lack of any meaningful end game content, this is not helped when certain Blizzard CMs happen to tweet about content that didn't make it in. This only serves to irratate the community more, having a daily quest hub akin to the isle of thunder would have been fantastic. It could have tied into the Raid and provided a wealth of story based content. (More on raid tie ins at the end) But alas no it got it got cut.

More worryingly here though is that we have heard talk and rumours for a while since Blizzconn about how there could only be two tiers of raids with this being a "short" expansion. But if that is so far we have our first tier of raids, we are still have no idea how Tannan Jungle, Faralon and the Iron Docks zones/areas will fit into the equation. Or if there will be any room for them all, if next content is Quest hub >> Raid Tier >> Quest hub can they all fit into that pattern. Also with the defeat of Backhand, there are only two warlords left of which one Guldan is hardly a threat, though if I am being honest Grommash isn't really either. Why are we delaying surely the next step is Tannan Jungle and the end of Expac.

Now this next bit will be a bit cynical, so apologies in advance I just can't help myself. So around Blizzconn we heard about how they had taken on board that we did not enjoy the massive wait for content at the end of MoP. So they were increasing teams' size and hiring more artists as art assets were a major hold up. Here we are 4 months or so into the expansion and we aren't really seeing the any benefit of this. To me it feels like they are feeding content in drips and drabs and spreading it out over the span of the expac. For example of the iron docks quest hub wasn't ready for 6.1, could they not have left 6.1 for a month of so? To me there isn't any feature in the patch that waiting another month or so would have mattered. (Obviously I have no idea how much work it would take to complete the daily hub) If feels odd to release a patch with a major piece of content being delayed, almost just to hit a regular release cycle for patches.

Ok so summing up here and ending on positives because there are some, many somes in fact. Colour-blind Mode amazing, it's a massive step up from the previous iteration. As someone who is colour-blind being able to tweak the settings so I can actually differentiate between different shades of colours is fantastic. It's a huge win and something more games I wish would offer, though considering the cost and time to create for a lot of single release triple a title don't have the lifespan to warrant such efforts. Also the Jukebox is awesome, not just because of Convert to raids sounders. But there is a lot of Wow music now most of it awesome, it's nice to be able to pick and choose what we like. Though if I am being honest I want this for the whole game not just in my garrison.

One thing that occurs to me with patch 6.1, Blizz could have solved this entire issue if they had just chucked Blackrock Foundry in with 6.1 and called it the Blackrock foundry raid patch. Would we be complaining if this was the case? Well probably not as much some other end game content would be nice but you can't have your cake and eat it. Then we could have had a really cool raid patch trailer that Blizz normally do, I miss those.

So next week Friday again because for now it works, possible subject matters could be. As gamers are we being ripped off, the lack of cohesion and continuity in Wods Story compared to MoP, or something else maybe.

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