The Queue: It’s been a long week
It’s the end of the week… again. And it’s the Friday Queue… again. So let’s get to it.
Q4tQ When do you think we’ll see 9.1.5 on the PTR?
Can’t we go one week without needing to know when the next patch will be released? One week??
The worst thing about this question is that now that it’s in my head, I should probably put it in our to be written post queue for someone to write.
You may think I’m kidding, but I’m going to save this post and add this to the list right now.
Q4tQ: Which of the following categories do you fall into, and why?
1) I’m currently playing, and will remain so for the 9.1 launch.
2) I’m not currently playing, but will return the day 9.1 releases.
3) I’m not currently playing, but will return within a week or two of 9.1’s release.
4) I’m not currently playing, and have no current plans to return for 9.1.
5) Shath’mag vwyq shu et’agthu, Shath’mag sshk ye! Ag’rr hazz ak’yel ksh ga’halahs pahg!
I’m certainly dancing around #2. Lately I log on once a week, or once every other week, to run alt raids and hang out. I’m just bored and waiting for new stuff to show up.
I suppose some days I lean a little towards #5. Life is hard and complicated and sometimes you just hope an Old God is out there listening, ready to help solve your problems. Unfortunately, they tend to solve your problems by devouring your mind (and sometimes the rest of you), which can create all new problems. Still, it’s a nice thought.
Nap complete. What day is it?
Friday, so you are finally freed from another week. Finally, we are all freed from another week!
Q4tQ: are there any elements of modern WoW writing that strike you as lazy or uninspired? Aside from the ubiquitous “evil thing corrupts a hero dude, and he is now a villain dude that will be killed in a raid.”
You’ve already hit on the biggest one. WoW certainly has a thing for heroes who become villains, alternately to defeat or redeem. But that’s far from the only story trope that WoW has used (perhaps overused). The game is full of old fantasy tropes (and the baggage attached to those tropes) and is quite invested in its own lore, so it hasn’t done much to escape some of the old tropes and biases that are laced through the storyline.
Another big one is the factions and the faction war. While conflicting factions can be an interesting storyline, we’ve spent a long time with one presented as good and one presented as evil. The “Humans are goodness and virtue, Orcs are vicious savages” trope is kind of at the heart of this conflict, and it leans into some caricatures that are pretty racist. Practically every media that leans into classic fantasy tropes without analyzing or adapting them has similar problems.
Now, tropes aren’t necessarily a bad thing. Some story elements show up again and again because they’re fun. But every trope is a story we’ve heard before, and they can get old, too. WoW has covered a lot of ground with tropes over the years, and we’ve seen its favorites pop up again and again.
I wouldn’t say this is lazy or blame the writers for doing it. Perhaps they still enjoy tropes we find old and tiring. Storytelling is a subjective thing and what feels tedious to you could be an exciting story beat to someone else. But they are old stories and things we’ve done before. I’m ready to see and do new things, to leave these ropes behind.
Is it just me or does Slands have a LOT of bugs compared to the last several expansions? I admit I wasn’t super engaged in Legion and barely engaged at all in BfA, but the amount of bugs in Shadowlands is noticeably bad.
Like if you’re a Necrolord and you have a calling to bring a trainee to Ardenweald, the trainee just…doesn’t show up? I don’t know if it’s always but a lot of people have complained about it on Wowhead, and it’s been like that for months. Still not fixed.
I would agree with you that Shadowlands feels a little buggy. I personally tend to spot typos, and I see them everywhere.
But I suspect that at least some of this is feeling rather than reality. There are always bugs in software, and having them is inescapable. But I suspect our current perspective may make Shadowlands feel more buggy than it is.
Because Shadowlands is what’s right in front of us. Shadowlands is what we’re playing, experiencing, thinking about. We can see all of the problems right there, plain as day. For older expansions, we don’t see all of those bugs anymore. It’s been years since any of those were new, and the frustrations of bugs can fade with time.
So, really, I’ve gotta say both yes and no here. It feels buggy, but a lot of that could just be our current perspective.
I’m not too read up on Hearthstone these days but is there anything in Hearthstone lore that you would like to see converted into WoW?
100% the Hearthstone version of Gadgazten as a city full of warring criminal factions. But it’s Hearthstone, so things were more about colorful characters and interesting interactions. Hearthstone is full of great art and great voice acting, and the devs really brought Gadgatzen to life. By comparison, WoW’s version feels very small and static.
And that’s all for now, my friends. I hope you’ve had a good week and have a restful weekend ahead of you. I’ll be back here next week for more Queuing — I’ll see you then.
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