How hard should it be to play an MMO?

A lot of the on-ramp for WoW is superb. They’ve recently revamped the new player interface, and it’s slick and better than ever. Questing is a breeze, and so is leveling your character. Heck, it’s even easy to find a group to run a dungeon with now. Itemization, however, is crazily out of control.

I downloaded a spreadsheet to help me determine what kinds of items to seek out for my character, and how to improve them with secondary enhancements like enchantments and gems. This spreadsheet is also supposed to help me understand how my character’s talents work and how to maximize their efficiency. Click that image above to see it full size. The image I have included is only a portion of the spreadsheet; it has TEN TIMES that many rows.

On the spectrum that goes from fun to homework, this is WAY too far over to the homework side. I understand that this will be simplified with the next expansion. I hope it’s going to be simplified a lot. Does a top-level MMO have to provide this kind of homework to be successful? Who really has fun figuring this stuff out?

(I feel it my duty to point out that none of these caluculations matter one tinker’s damn when I’m operating one of the “vehicles” from the last expansion that remove my character, her experience, and all her gear from the gameplay. But I digress.)


4 Responses to How hard should it be to play an MMO?

  1. Kindralas says:

    It’s much simpler than that spreadsheet makes it look. Someone went nucking futs.

    Armor Penetration > Strength > All Else. Basically, you maximize those two stats. Make sure your Hit and Expertise are “capped,” in the case of Expertise, all you’re looking to do is push Dodge off of your hit table.

    WoW players seem to think that spreadsheets like this let them do more whatever, and they’re mostly wrong, because it’s not that complicated. The changes in the new expansion are likely to just make it “use the highest iLvl item you have,” which makes gear somewhat pointless.

    The arcane interplay of stats is pretty horrific in WoW (for example, Armor Penetration is worse the less you have, so it may not be worthwhile until you get a lot of it. Also, ask me about how Windfury interacts with haste sometime), but when it comes down to it, there’s only a couple of stats you really care about.

    There are spreadsheets out there for Resto Shaman that explain just how much all of the appropriate stats are worth to me. But when it comes down to it, I don’t need mana regen, since I rarely run out of mana, and I can heal most tanks to full from about half health with one Healing Wave. So all I want is Haste. Everything else is almost useless.

    It’s a lot of confusion that really doesn’t mean anything.

  2. Jason says:

    There are probably some benefits to min-maxing your character using stuff like this, but it’s on the order of “If I grind out another 50 hours for this piece of gear, it’ll improve my DPS by 0.001%!” And some people will do that.

    In other news, I’ll probably be starting up this weekend…when you said you guys played on Uther, do you have lowbie alts you muck around with? Because I won’t be leveling up to 80 anytime soon and my editor is thinking about starting up a new character on another server.

  3. Shocho says:

    We do have lots of alts, yes, but the lowest are probably 50 or so. However, LMK what your plans are and we can at least hook you up with some gold and bags.

  4. Kindralas says:

    WoW in general doesn’t provide for leveling people concurrently. Leveling to 80 is more or less best done solo, which makes it really hard to get friends playing.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: