Play WoW without WoW?

Its Tuesday and I was thinking that its odd sometimes to have a free night and actually have time to play a bit. Run a few dailies, maybe start some prospecting, or even just be silly in Stormwind. I know the downtime could be used for WoW downtime too, but I like the odd casual game experience; playing when you don’t have to can be fun after all.

It has me thinking that Blizzard could publish a side game which can be played without the entire game files which advances your toon in some way. A mini-game for the patch period.

Now this could:

  • Advance a skill, such as Archeology, Fishing, or other secondary profession, perhaps with the limitation that you keep the skill-ups, but don’t get the drops?
  • Would probably need to be restricted to an activity which does not generate or consume a game world asset like gold or ore.
  • Perhaps the activity does not interact with the WoW characters at all, but is a side game, a mini-game?
  • Could also grant another meta reward, such as an odd title or some achievement points relating to the degree of dedication the player has.
  • Would the offering of something trivial but entertaining be seen as a time waste, a good PR tool, an e-peen leaderboard?
  • Would the same little form of entertainment be viewed differently if it required an additional fee? Like Farmville for WoW… But then applying a fee almost declares that the assets or stuff gained should translate into the game.

I can see why it won’t happen – cost prohibitive, would need to be billable, etc; and the opportunity for a small dev to offer a mini-game to Blizzard is probably bantered around the web every month in some form or another.

To me though it still has merit, and the opportunity for a link up is there. Create a link between the Warcraft franchise in the WoW game with the other forms of Warcraft; the cards, books, etc. Use the otherwise captive attention span of the millions of subscribers to consolidate the brand and experience even further.

Overall as an alternative for tonight perhaps I’ll just go browse for a few good games that are silly and entertaining to muck about with, or go get one of my books and curl up in bed. Not like the housework was going to get finished anyway (wink).

Lastly for all those folks and partners of gamers who look forward to Tuesday as a special break from the everyday addiction, have you seen the WoW Widow t-shirts? Take a look..

Happy Gaming.

wow widow tshirt

A good shirt for all those wow widows out there. Tuesday is attention day?

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3 thoughts on “Play WoW without WoW?

  1. My wife refuses to play WoW because she hates games where you have to run around killing things (but she loves Plants V Zombies).
    Often I have thought of a WoW spin-off in Facebook or possibly a new profession where you can level a toon without the need of dungeons and combat. Such professions could be chef- producing recipes for cooking; or animal farming – produce pets and mounts to sell to other players. The professions could work in a similar fashion to the Sims, where the player has to micro-manage the animal’s needs.

  2. heya ShaggyD, my wife is a non-gamer but loved playing games many years ago. I’ve been pondering what type of game would be casual enough for her to play on and off, and also interesting. Hard sell for that, and for some folks finding the right gateway-game (ala a gateway drug) is a mini-game in itself.

    The wow mini concept is a huge opportunity. The more I think about it, the more I think there is a large range of peripheral options that could help bring more people to blizzard’s services. Even if they do not end up subscribing to wow, there is benefit in having them looking at other products they could make. Specialising is good for the dev team, but how is an alternate Android/iOS game not a viable plugin?

    Thanks for commenting. :)

  3. Funny as it is, I downloaded AngryBirds PC edition for the wife last night. The result? I had to cook myself and the little un our own meals… She was instantly addicted. What strikes me is how Blizzard have been slow to pick up the potential Warcraft could have with mini games which could be linked as achievements to the main game. The mini games could be played within the main game or as a browser. Warcraft already has the unique cartoon look, so it shouldn’t be too difficult. Additionally, the idea of mini-games (winnable pets?) could open the market to younger players (9-12 yrs) and also older generations who do not have the time to raid in the early hours of the morning (like myself).

    A missed opportunity I’d say.

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