There are many different people who play WoW for many different reasons. That’s one of the draws to WoW, the many options in how you play. There is one seasoned player who’s done everything, from leveling multiple level sixties on different servers to facing the hardest possible end-game content. His name is DarkFact and he currently resides on the Blackhand server.
DarkFact has played since day one, when the game originally launched. He’s gone from slaying Murlocs with his demonic power to exploring the depths of the dread citadel Naxxramas. He’s experienced it all and he shares with Ten Ton Hammer his opinion on the upcoming expansion, The Burning Crusade, based on his near endless experience with the game.
Xerin: How did you get started with World of Warcraft?
DarkFact: I could never get into DAOC [Dark Age of Camelot], FFXI [Final Fantasy XI], or similar games. I wanted a MMORPG to play and knew from the start Blizzard would provide a good showing of what I wanted at the time.
Xerin: Why did you stick with World of Warcraft while other games were being released? What kept you playing WoW all this time and have you taken any breaks?
DarkFact: I'm a one-MMORPG player. I couldn't possibly play more than one at a time and I'd feel it would be a waste to not make other characters reach their max level to enjoy them. I did take a break temporarily thanks to some guild drama once but it wasn't for more than a month. I came back and got into a new raiding guild, and continued playing.
I came back because there was nothing else to play at that point in time, consoles or online. Nothing that caught my attention anyway.
Xerin: What do you think about The Burning Crusade? Do you think more levels, smaller instances, and even more extreme items is a good or bad idea.
DarkFact: I think it is a rather odd way of Blizzard to hit a 'soft reset' button for everyone. They're hurting every single raiding guild with the expansion, and making drama even now between them, just by trying to cater to the people who can't field 40 mans. Why change the mechanics of the raiding game almost 2 years in? New items and such follow the traditional course every MMORPG does, old ones become obsolete, new ones are the ones to have. I'm not too excited about the expansion, but we'll see.
Xerin: Do you think guilds will find an answer to filling out 25 man raids outside of massive spliting? As it stands now, most raiding guilds barely can field 40 players, there is no way to field two raids (50 people) without massive amounts of effort, rational people, and organization.
DarkFact: Honestly, no. There's always talks of 'Team A' and 'Team B' but there's no way to have things be the same once the expansion comes out, and drama is expected in huge quantities if guilds try to stick together. Why be a 'guild' if you can field 2 instances? The purpose is to do things together, so it's best if they just split and avoid headaches of 'I wanted 'X' as the MT or as DPS this week, screw you guys'.
Likewise, if you struggle with 40, you will find you have 10 more people in line waiting, upset, anyway, and they will likely split the second they are able to.
Xerin: Do you think the lower raiding cap will help or hurt guilds in learning content. With less numbers there will be less people required to learn it, but at the same time there will be less "fudge" room for mistakes.
DarkFact: It will make it so it remains the same, honestly. There's always 'dead' weight in many guilds but those who are able to progress in places like Naxxramas right now will likely cut those first, and advance further. There's very little room for error in Naxxramas for key people in each fight, so if you've been in the raiding game this far, you pretty much have the abilities and coordination to learn many things quicker than most. At the same time, people expecting easy epics in the expansion since the cap is lower I believe will be sorely disappointed when they find themselves wiping for hours and not knowing why. At least, I hope so, no one likes easy content.
Xerin: Blood Elves, Draenei, Shaman/Paladin mixup, etc. How do you think the new skills and classes for the two factions will help or hurt raiding?
DarkFact: I think it'll make the raiding game more balanced overall and make content easier to make since they don't have to balance it for both Horde and Alliance. They will make the raids that much powerful but you will need to decide how many of each you're bringing and why, what buffs to apply, etc, so in a way, you'll have to think more.
Xerin: Do you think fighting people from the lore, like the upcoming epic battle with Prince Kael'thas Sunstridre or battles with the infamous lich Kel'Thuzad are a good or bad idea? They provide epic battles, but many feel they ruin the lore of the game.
DarkFact: I personally find it fun to fight people mentioned in the previous games or main characters, I always went to fight the other faction leaders just for fun. However, I do not agree that players should be able to KILL said leaders / lore characters permanently. What they did with Kel'thuzad ensuring his revival is a good way to do these types of battles, but knowing Xorcwarriorx killed Kael'thas in the storyline, or hearing Dwarfyboy say "let's go farm Illidan for his blade" would really ruin immersion for me.
Xerin: What feature would you like to add to the expansion if you could.
DarkFact: That's simple, really, make 40-man raids an option even if it means harder bosses and content for those who already have long established guilds for 40man raiding. This is the main reason I'm not really looking forward to in the expansion, just throwing 15 people out atleast for good and saying thanks for your company for a year or two, now good luck. Many are already quitting or throwing drama fits over who stays or who leaves in the endgame guilds. Why not just bump the difficulty a tad? It's already done in games like Diablo 2 when more join the games, and it'd ease a lot of the environments around naxxramas raiding guilds.
We’d like to thank DarkFact for taking time out of his studies to participate in our interview.
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