why i love(d) the game

I feel like i might have come across as way too passionate last night bordering on scary.  I had been thinking about what i wanted to write (and even started writing it) the night and day before i was able to post it.  Somehow it turned into one of those rants where people were probably asking themselves why i even play World of Warcraft at all.  I mean, if i feel so slighted as a Hunter, why even bother?  Well it wasn’t always this way.  Things were never perfect, but i once had hope that TPTB wanted to give me a better gameplay experience.  And in WotLK i actually felt like there were steps taken in the right direction.  I didn’t feel OP, but mana was in a good place, and pet problems were being improved upon, and once the kinks were worked out Camo really was helpful.  It was a really good expansion overall, i felt like things were finally going the right way, and then that was all ripped away in Cata.

I actually liked the Cataclysm expansion in a lot of ways.  The heroics were amazing.  I felt like i was actually achieving something on the Molten Front.  And there were really exciting changes, even if i was upset to lose some of my favorite things to the cataclysm.  But this is where Luinel was gutted, body and soul.  They took away her great mana and gave her subpar focus.  And somehow they made the class feel even more like a caster.  The AoE with improved SS/Multi-Shot hybriding is unbelievable but if you spam it you’re constantly oof.  So i went from feeling capable and fearless to feeling cut down and destroyed.  I healed a lot in Cata, in fact i loved Shaman healing in heroics and was trying to break into healing in raids, but i guess it wasn’t meant to be.  My true love has always been my hunter, i keep coming back to her because logging into her is like coming home.  We’ve come so far, with my ghost saber there with me nearly every step of the way, so i kept hoping that they would fix things.

And then MoP came out and made things even worse.  Pets are in an okay place, and Stampede is wonderful, but most of the new things in the even-newer talent trees feel like a complete waste.  Focus has improved slightly, but everything about playing my Hunter no longer feels natural, in fact it feels slightly forced.  I am not confident of my playing abilities anymore.  It’s not just me, it’s what i’ve lost, what i’ve been forced to leave behind.  Maybe i gave up too soon, maybe things have gotten better farther into the xpac, but there’s this weird dichotomy with Pandaria where it feels cartoonish, and i can’t take it seriously, but it’s absolutely deadly.  And i feel like the only way i have the slightest chance of staying alive is to play BM so my pet is actually strong enough to help me.  And i’ve always disliked BM in a way, idk, it just doesn’t feel like home, i prefer Surv.  Just let me trap some guys and blow up the other guys.  K, thanks.

I thought i would love Pandaria, but it makes me feel claustrophobic.  I just don’t feel it, most of it annoys me.  The stuff i do like, i want more of, and then some of it i don’t even want to touch.  And my reputation…i’m usually a reputation whore, but in this xpac i just have barely bothered.  Dailies were too time consuming and didn’t sufficiently cover my repair costs or have any appreciable reward.  The stuff i want to do is too hard.  The burning questions that i’ve had were tabled in favor of new ideas that annoy me.  I guess Vol’jin has paid off, and Hellscream is finally semi-dealt with two xpacs later, but i haven’t gotten to see it, not really.  I’ve been meaning to try out the Proving Grounds but never gotten around to it.  Idk, i just can’t even quite give words to how disappointed i am by what i have gotten to do, so i’m not pushing to do more disappointing stuff.  There was so much focus on the anger/hatred shade aspects, and pulling the Pandaren into the conflict, when i didn’t want to pull them in.  I wanted them to be neutral, i wanted to be neutral for once.  I didn’t want to be doing Hellscream’s bidding or cleaning up after Nazgrim yet again.  The subterfuge made me uncomfortable, the absence of Sylvanas is distressing, the about face that Jaina made is perplexing and worrying and still not explained (unless i shell out more cash for a book maybe).  Oh, and i’m still not sure what’s so great about rolling a monk.

I feel completely disconnected and lost now.  Has it really come down to running around, looking under rocks for free gear?  What are we hoping to achieve at the Timeless Isle?  Is it just a more contained Tournie ground? Is the Black Prince truly trustworthy?  When will Anduin finally come into his own?  I guess i’ve just spent the entire xpac not knowing why i was being sent from place to place, doing assigned tasks, etc.  I feel like something in the game has been lost.  Where in the past i met challenges head on and felt like i was fighting for the good of Azeroth i now feel like i’m participating in damage control, and not very efficient damage control, at that.

I meant for this post to be about what i love about WoW, and atm i don’t have the heart to go into it because i think i’m going to make myself sad.  I was talking about it with my sister earlier, about how everything felt amazing, and i couldn’t wait to explore the next zone, and how afraid i was to go to UC the first time i stepped through the portal from SMC.  We had to run so far, actually talk to strangers to form dungeon groups, wait forever for a land mount, let alone a flying one!  We had to go on epic attunement and class specific quests.  They were a pain in the neck, but you felt like you earned your totem, you felt like that pet you had tamed was making you a stronger player, you felt like you were actually achieving something, and no one but you really knew about that, you and the people you fought for it with.  And now everything is “play it on fast forward.”  Get to the end as soon as possible, don’t smell the roses, don’t enjoy the journey, and you don’t actually have to fight for anything meaningful.  I don’t know why MoP feels too hard and too easy at the same time, but it does.  I feel like we’ve lost something along the way.  I feel like we’re on the wrong path.  I don’t hate the game, i want to get back what i loved so much.  But i don’t know how to.  I don’t know how.

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