Archive for February, 2013

HFL 66 – A Darkmoon Foursome

Posted in Economy, General, HFL, MMO, Podcast, Polls, PvP, Raiding, World of Warcraft with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 25, 2013 by Armada

darkmoon-faire-2Episode 66

“A Darkmoon Fair Foursome”

We break out the ride tickets as Kevin and Apsana from the Darkmoon Fair join us to discuss all matter of Warcraft topics.

From the Cross Realm Zone debate, to casting the Warcraft movie we cover as much as most shows before the break. The Transmog Spotlight takes us down the Druid path with Val Kilmer and the Thunderheart set!

For Blue Sky it is time to make a case for a single currency as we debate and speculate the Pros and Cons.

Stream HFL Episode 66 on EGO Networks HERE

Download HFL Episode 66 from iTunes HERE

Listen to HFL on Stitcher Radio HERE

Join in on the conversation!

HFLTwitter: @HFLPodcast
EGO Twitter: @EGONetworks
HFL Website: http://hordeforlife.com
EGO Podcast Portal: http://egonetworks.com

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HFL 65 – Deja Vu and Deadlines

Posted in General, HFL, MMO, Podcast, Role Playing, World of Warcraft with tags , , , , , , , on February 19, 2013 by Armada

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Episode 65

“Deja Vue and Deadlines”

It was a week of trials and tribulations as the HFL crew were forced to put in double time to get this episode out to you.

Along with some great feedback from our listeners, we also cover some developer comments, subscribers numbers, the soon to be infamous “raid wipe buff” and give you the Transmog goods on the Shaman Tier 3 set; Earthshatter! Alas we ran out of time as we had a deadline to meet and we not able to cover our PvP Blue Sky this week.

Enjoy the 90 minute show and we promise the Blue Sky talk returns next week!

Stream HFL Episode 65 on EGO Networks HERE

Download HFL Episode 65 from iTunes HERE

Listen to HFL on Stitcher Radio HERE

Join in on the conversation!

HFLTwitter: @HFLPodcast
EGO Twitter: @EGONetworks
HFL Website: http://hordeforlife.com
EGO Podcast Portal: http://egonetworks.com

HFL Poll: Do You Want Housing in WoW?

Posted in General, HFL, MMO, Podcast, Polls, Role Playing, World of Warcraft with tags , , , , , on February 18, 2013 by Armada

Simple question with a simple answer, do you support full blown housing in the World of Warcraft? You vote and we will talk about in on an upcoming episode of the Horde for Life podcast!

Blizzard Currency Gate: Repeating History

Posted in Economy, General, Raiding, World of Warcraft with tags , , , , , , , , on February 13, 2013 by Armada

 

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Listen to Episode 66 of the Horde for Life podcast for more audio discussion on the following topic.

Break Out Your Spreadsheets… again

Generally speaking, I feel confident in saying that Blizzard has done an admirable job of admitting, learning from and not repeating previous mistakes. However one area where the fine folks in Irvine have failed in this regard is the repeated use of multiple and varied forms of in game currency.

Recently it was announced that Blizzard will be adding yet another “currency” to The World of Warcraft as part of the 5.2 patch. Following up on the expansion released series of Elder Charms, The Thunder Isle patch will now add Mogu Charms of Fate. For those not in the know, after patch 5.2 Elder Charms will be usable as a new currency for Mogushan Vaults, Terrace of Endless Spring and the Heart of Fear. The new Mogu Charms of Fate will act as a bonus currency to rolls on boss drops… and just when we started to put our spreadsheets away. These in game legal tender, like so many introduced before it serves one and only one primary purpose, to gate gear acquisition and thus game progression.

The “Gating” Game

While it is perfectly understandable that Blizzard wants (and needs) to gate players from the most currently released content and gear in an effort to extend game play life, using multiple currencies to do so is a myopic – and quite bluntly – lazy mechanism in which to do so.

Yes it is easy.
Yes it is low effort.
Yes it will create the desired barrier to progression.

However it does so as a short term fix that while masking the symptoms temporarily, really offers no cure. Adding multiple currencies that are specific to a game that is already so heavy based on tiers will only serve to make that very content less accessible once the next content release is launched. This in effect builds walls of linear game play that discourage a more dynamic play style and that, in the long term, is bad for retention and bad for business.

Not All Tiered Currencies are Created Equal

If you have not guessed this by now, let me go ahead and state for the record that I am, across the board, against anything other than a single currency system in game. This includes the currency wall that exists between PvE and PvP.  However I do understand even in disagreement why those currencies (Valor vs Conquest for example) exist and Blizzard has at least attempted to soften the wall with the ability to exchange the two for a premium.

However there is a chasm of difference between separating PvE and PvP versus creating multiple and often confusing levels and facets of currency with a finite lifespan within PvE depending upon the tier in which you are currently gaming. As a player you should be able to do those things in game that you find enjoyable and not be forced into a bottleneck of game play like a heard of cattle/tauren all for the sake of slowing down progression.

Let me be clear, no you should not be able to get 5.2 gear by picking peace bloom in Durotar and yes the fastest way to acquire said 5.2 gear should be to do the relevant content released without the ability to horde currency (i.e. elder charms) in the pre-launch period. However creating a new never before seen set of currency – once again – specifically for new content is not the answer and is shortsighted.

History Speaks Volumes

To bolster the single currency argument from the level of strictly rant to something more along the lines of an educated opinion, let us turn to history. Since the dawn of Azeroth there are several examples of multiple exchange currencies being used, again strictly for gating purposes with results ranging from flawed and frustrating to completely illogical and unused.

As an example of the former we need to look no further than the last major implementation of tiered currencies in the Wrath of the Lich King expansion. I of course am speaking of the the lost tokens of (insert your favorite cool sounding adjective here). While you could argue that this implementation was an improvement from the many types of confusing badges used in The Burning Legion, most would agree that going from horrendous to bad is not much of an improvement.

To speak to the latter how about we stroll down memory lane to the many various PvP tokens that were ZONE SPECIFIC (Zangramarsh Tower PvP anyone?) to my all time favorite; Battleground specific honor marks! That’s right kids, back in the day PvP gear and mounts required a set number of Warsong Gultch marks coupled with Arathi Basin marks and a sprinkling of Alterac Valley marks.

Oh the memories have scarred me like that of an abused gamer. Indeed history tells us this is a bad idea that has never worked in game, yet down the path we stride again.

Follow the Rules!

In short… a cardinal rule for the introduction of any new currency into the game should be that it NEVER becomes obsolete. Yet so many have. Devalued? Perhaps, but never obsolete. This can be mitigated to some degree with an exchange similar to the Honor for Conquest and Justice for Valor mechanisms. It is not ideal, but it is tenable.

Forgetting for the moment how crazy the world outside of gaming would be if we had to pay for our goods and services with 8 different currencies, of which many were not transferable, Blizzard needs to take a more proactive approach to restricting the progression flow. This could be done by introducing and implementing a new gating system that does not revolve around new and multiple currencies that will be forgotten to time and history.

We have caps on valor points that already serve as a restriction, so why have the charms in the first place? If the answer is because you want people doing specific content for specific gear (which is flawed but that is another discussion for another day) then make the gear non purchasable with Valor until you unlock the areas by completing it in stages.

Calling Warren Buffet!

If you step away for a moment and really think about this, using multiple currencies is actually absurd to the big picture. Multiple tiers of Marks, Tokens, Badges, Points, Charms, Shards have all been introduced to the game and many have been stricken from the Database for their failure, let us learn from that.

Blizzard is an amazing company with exceptional talent and in most facets great vision. However when it comes to in game monetary and financial systems, Blizzard will not be confused with Charles Schwab or Ben Bernanke anytime soon.

HFL Poll: CRZ Verdict – Love or Hate?

Posted in General, HFL, MMO, Podcast, Polls, World of Warcraft with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on February 11, 2013 by Armada

If you listen to the Horde for Life podcast then you know our stance on the Blizzard implementation of Cross Realm Zone server technology in the World of Warcraft. But we want to hear from you… what do you think?

Horde for Life 64 – More Lore!

Posted in General, HFL, MMO, Podcast, World of Warcraft with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 7, 2013 by Armada

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Episode 64 – “More Lore”

We are happy to welcome friend of the show Ron Loupe on this lore heavy episode. We highlight a Blue Sky lore mechanic that we believe will introduce lore to a whole new corps of players while giving lore veterans an ear to ear grin.

When not talking lore we discuss some Blizzard developer comments surrounding PvP, mounted combat and player housing!

All this plus a new Food for the Gods, your feedback and the Transmog spotlight offers a treat for Warlocks!

Stream HFL Episode 64 on EGO Networks HERE

Download HFL Episode 64 from iTunes HERE

Listen to HFL on Stitcher Radio HERE

Join in on the conversation!

HFLTwitter: @HFLPodcast
EGO Twitter: @EGONetworks
HFL Website: http://hordeforlife.com
EGO Podcast Portal: http://egonetworks.com

HFL Poll: Your Favorite Tier 15 Set

Posted in General, HFL, MMO, Podcast, Polls, Raiding, World of Warcraft with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 5, 2013 by Armada

You have seen the models for Tier 15, you have heard our comments and ranking from episode 62. Now it is your turn to chime in, which set do you think is the best? Vote now!