Yesterday was Myrki the Warlock’s highlight evening – she completed attunement for the Eternal Palace raid, did her Heart of Forge number of quests, and conveniently her Circle of Stars queue popped up. We’ve killed both bosses on our first try – apparently people are learning. Queues are sensible as well – one hour if one wing is queued is fine. So yes, if you’re interested – people do play retail, and actively so.
It was close to 11 p.m., so before going to bed I’ve presumed that most schoolbois already went to sleep, and I might as well try Classic. Naturally there were queues. My realm with saved characters was full. The queue was first 2250 people, then in 10 minutes it dropped to 130… and stopped there. 20 minutes more, nothing happened. As I have absolutely no strings attached to this realm, I’ve tried another realm which said “High” instead of “Full”. Not without a queue also, but I got in in 5 minutes.
I’ve tinkered a gnome rogue named Joyhickey (back in time this was my first ever character in WoW) and went off. Naturally I’ve experienced the excitement of learning a new spell or acquiring a new piece of gear, but this is way not enough to love the game – in fact, we experience that in every expansion when more powerful items or simply new transmogs come, and our artifacts start gaining traits.
Gameplay is not exciting at all. A rogue starts with 3 battle spells already which is much better than a mage, for example, who is supposed to fireball foes until 10 or even longer. By level four I also get a stealth and a backstab to start the fight with. I cope with the enemies easily, granted I don’t pick two or three at once. But the battle seems to go on forever. You stab something once and wait for cooldowns/energy like forever. It’s a yawn
fiesta siesta, and I have a strong feeling that it will stay so no matter how many spells or gear I will have. Cherry on top, animations are very clumsy and uninspiring. Casting Sinister Strike has this cool sound, but it’s the only thing cool about it, because it doesn’t differ from auto-attacks – neither are other spells.
I’ve managed to complete maybe four quests in total? Competition and all, it was fine. I got stuck at killing troggs. You need 6 Burly Rockjaws and 6 simple Rockjaws. There are dozens of Burly Rockjaws walking unattended, but I managed to find only 3 simple Rockjaws. I’ve dedicated 15 minutes to trogg hunting, and still didn’t find enough simple Rockjaws, so I quit for the time being. It was 15 minutes of running in circles around the very same spot where I knew the mobs are in theory spawned. Oh well. I’m looking forward to delivering a piece of wood across the continents by foot, and that makes me wanna cry.
When playing a game, you need to set your own goals. I don’t plan to join guilds (I even don’t have one in retail), I don’t plan to do raids, even dungeons, or god forbid PvP. I’ve seen all the story already, and I’m a multiple times explorer of the whole Azeroth, so discovering new spots is not the point. Yes, I’m talking about endgame, because the journeyTM will take you how long? a month? two months? three months with baby steps?
I think I just want to have an access to the pre-Cataclysm version of Azeroth. For that I would very much like to have level 60 and a mount, and that’s it. It’s not gonna be a speed leveling – in fact, I’d never play Classic in favor of retail. And only in case of a lull or after a day’s worth of raiding I’d launch it to have a braindead, relaxed gameplay. Clumsy, ugly, tedious gameplay :) Exactly a tourist mode – nothing more, nothing less.