Every single design decision that blizzard has had to go back on or regret making can be traced down to a single idea, one wow shares with multiple other MMOs. Wow is designed like a linear game with a fixed conclusion in a game that’s not supposed to end. If you want to know what this looks like compare world of Warcrafts quest lines to RuneScape 2s. RuneScape 2 has quest lines that function similar to gta 5s, although some do connect to the main story of the game most quests don’t relate to any specific grand goal or character arc, they all serve as one off stories about different aspects of the world as a whole and how the player goes about dealing with the problems prosed in them is their own choice. Thus quests in RuneScape 2 rarely ever feel bloated or pointless to the game, because they’re all optional, and serve as content the player can playthrough at any time at any pace they want. Wow on the other hand has a lot of quests that play a lot differently, most are integrated to some major plot point in warcrafts lore, to some grand journey. When the quests go off topic to these stories they feel completely out of place, they feel pointless and serve only to drag out playtime for the player and they don’t have to be but that’s just how they were designed relative to the game. This disparity between how the game is fundamentally set up - an MMO to hop in and play for as long as you want whenever you want - and how blizzard designs new content is what drives out the fun in a lot of expansions, often completely indirectly and this is why so many new decisions put into it get scrapped. Increasing level caps, scrapped due to p2w shit and also just the fact that levelling for that long is boring and hard to balance on the developer end due to bloat. Azerite gear and item leveling, has to be scrapped and completely reworked because it feels out of place and over complicates progression. Heirlooms and the old skill tree, ends up getting reworked or even removed in some places because again it feels out of place, like it’s bloating the game even if the game isn’t meant to be finished without it.
What I’m saying here is that wows fundamental problems game design wise stems from a disconnect between the fact that it’s an MMO meant to be played indefinitely while having content designed to be finished once like in an ordinary game. What ends up happening is all that content ends up getting clogged with system after mechanic after feature and it all feelPost too long. Click here to view the full text.