Stealing Good Ideas

Blaugust 2015, Day 19

So I guess I’m super late to the “react to the WoW: Legion announcement” party. I’ve been trying to digest how I feel about it, and it is tricky. I don’t even play the game anymore (for now) after all. Why should I even have an opinion? Honestly after pouring years of my life into WoW, and having so many friends still there I have no illusions about how quick I will be to buy the expansion and try it out. Whether I will stick around much after leveling is the question.

This was pretty much peak WoW for me.

This was pretty much peak WoW for me.

With this in mind I’ve been thinking about what features from the MMOs I am currently playing I’d like to see added to WoW, and vice versa.

What WoW should steal:

  • WildStar’s housing: People have wanted player housing in WoW for years. Garrisons did not do the trick. WildStar’s housing has the best customization and depth I’ve seen, and unlike Garrisons you never really feel trapped there or obligated to spend tons of time if you don’t want to. It is a great balance.
  • WildStar’s double jump: WoW partially stole this, but just for the new Demon Hunter class. I worry if they have jumping puzzles like in WoD either they will be super easy for Demon Hunters and there will be an outcry, or people will discover that their version of double jump is more cosmetic than useful and be disappointed. I hope it gets spread around to everyone.
  • Final Fantasy XIV’s content schedule: FFXIV never seems to give me much time to get bored or complacent, there’s always an event or something new being added every few weeks. WoW is infamous for long content droughts, if they could figure out FFXIV’s secret they should steal it.
  • FFXIV’s combat precision: Some folks dislike FFXIV’s combat because of the long GCD that slows everything down, which is fair. One thing their combat does amazingly well though is telegraph very clearly and precisely. If I’m standing 2mm outside of a telegraph I know for a fact I am safe. WoW’s telegraphs are not always well defined, and even when they looked clear I often still took damage when I thought I would not.
  • WildStar’s costume interface: It is still not perfect, but WildStar’s holo-wardrobe is lightyears ahead of WoW’s transmog. I know it is a ridiculous ask since WoW’s system is based on old code that never had these types of vanity options in mind. But who wouldn’t want to be able to clear out all that inventory space, have tons of dyes on multiple channels, and share your outfits across all your characters?
  • FFXIV’s commendation system: I don’t pretend that this one change would transform WoW’s toxic community into FFXIV’s somewhat more appealing one. It would be nice though to occasionally have a chance to reward people for being awesome instead of trying (and usually failing due to WoW’s inadequate vote kick system) to get rid of people who are awful. WoW would be way more enticing for me if I thought the devs were even slightly trying to turn the toxic atmosphere around.

To look from the other direction, there’s also a few things I think these games could steal from WoW:

  • WildStar should steal flexible raid sizes: Yes the population in WildStar should be growing again very soon when F2P happens, but it will probably never be as big as WoW or even FFXIV. Flexible raids will let more people experience their end game content, and let raiding guilds focus on killing raid bosses instead of the roster management boss. Alternately they could just steal the much smaller raid sizes of FFXIV.
  • FFXIV should steal the WoW token: Ok, so WoW stole this from WildStar (and EVE, etc.) first, but still- having a way to buy game time for game currency would encourage people who are on the fence to try the game knowing they wouldn’t always have to commit to a monthly sub.
  • FFXIV should steal WoW’s account management and store: There’s a ton of neat things in the FFXIV store but I will never get them. Even if I had the money to spend, the Mogstation is such a nightmare to deal with it just isn’t worth my time. Blizzard has a streamlined, well-oiled system. No matter what you think of their cash shop items, the fact is everything is accessible and just works.
  • WildStar should steal (and refine) WoW’s legendary item quest chains: Sure, this is probably going to be replaced in Legion by upgrading your artifact weapon, but the original idea was good, if poorly executed at times. Having a long quest chain that takes months to complete and gives you a best-in-slot item is a great way to encourage people to get into content. You just have to be careful that the tasks you set are accessible and reasonable (I’m looking at you, PvP requirements). Both WoW and WildStar could look to FFXIV’s relic weapon quests here I think.

What do you think? What ideas are so good that all MMOs should steal them?

4 thoughts on “Stealing Good Ideas

  1. I’m not sure I want any game to look to Final Fantasy 14’s relic quest as originally implemented for inspiration. As someone who did some of the sillier rep grinds in WoW, it still felt a little extreme. The materia step was particularly bad.

    • It was definitely extreme. It was also almost completely unnecessary. I just love having things like that to chase in a game. High cost, low but still brag-worthy rewards!

  2. Pingback: Link Dead Radio: Story Sensations - Healing the masses

  3. Pingback: Farewell to Blaugust! | Moonshine Mansion

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