Last night, on the first night of play in a brand new expansion, I was in Deadmines on a level 80 character. Not heroic Deadmines – regular Deadmines.
One of the amazing things about WoW is the way it can appeal to many different playstyles. When a person logs on they can do so with the intent of:
- playing the auction house for gold
- leveling professions
- leveling alts
- getting achievements
- being social
And, until yesterday, there was one more option…
- leveling your guild
Of all the things that excited me about Cataclysm, the guild leveling was the big star. I had every intention of doing anything I could to get my guild to level and start getting perks for my guildmates. The daily cap on Guild XP was reached by about 6 AM, so the other option (I thought) was to get guild achievements which (until yesterday) were supposed to be able to exceed the daily cap.
With that in mind, one of the first things I did in the game was to get a group of four officers to start blitzing old instances and get some “Guild Run” achievements.
We sprinted through Deadmines and got the achievement splash for it. After all the “grats” I checked the guild XP meter and it hadn’t changed. We did Shadowfang Keep and got the achievement, and again no change.
I turned to the internet and found the blue post about guild achievements.
We have decided to remove the added bonus of gaining Guild Experience from Guild Achievements earned. This change will realign Guild Achievements with our philosophy held for normal Achievements, which are intended to be predominantly their own reward (barring the rare exception of special achievements that grant an additional reward.) Previously, the experience reward had been seen as an additional side bonus and not something that should have been significantly skewing the advancement of guilds. During the beta, we greatly increased leveling speed across the board and since most characters were copied from templates, guild experience from Achievements didn’t seem imbalanced. It has become clear that an imbalance does exist and should be addressed to ensure that guilds progress at the rates expected within the daily Guild Experience limits.
The reason this hits me so hard is that it actually took away an entire mode of gameplay. It actually removes one of the options from the list I made above. Chasing guild achievements was about the most exciting thing about the expansion for me, and was going to be my primary activity for the first week of the expansion. Now I can only help my guild by questing and instancing, which is back to the same-old-WoW.
As far as I can tell, any sizable guild will level at the same rate as all the other sizable guilds, because we’ll reach our daily cap every day. Will that mean that my guild and, say, Premonition will be at the same level? That makes no sense. It doesn’t hurt anyone for some guilds to level faster than others.
Blizzard gets a big thumbs-down from me on that one.