Thoughts on Instance 190 to 192

A range of thoughts from The Instance shows 190 to 192. Kind of a catch-up bucket post, as I’m listening to them as a batch. I’ll say up front that I really like these guys; and the personal edge and plain language version of the game the present is really valuable. If you don’t listen regularly show #192 is a good one.

Toon Models

From show #192 the Randy and Scott chatted about an improved model creator for Warcraft. The idea being to introduce a toon adjustment option similar to other games where we can customise more of the appearance of our characters. I think most players would like the option to alter more of their appearance; especially over time as they realise what they like.

Damn guys, I would love this  but I can see why it is difficult. C models, with R variations, wearing A gear, with P options adjustable via the barber; well than gets you: CRAP! = a lot of variations to load in real time in Dalaran (Lag-a-ran).

Perhaps the game code could be altered in a future version to only adjust the subtle display of toon models during low traffic areas, or it could be a UI preference – giving the tollerance level for models to be adjustable. eg. In town I don’t care, but in Instances with my mates it would be nice.

Perhaps only useful in the DeepRun Tram?

Account wide Achievements

The boys also read out a letter/suggestion about cross-realm and cross-toon achievements; but basically shot it down. I think it would not be hard, but I hear the argument. What I can suggest is that folks who I link up to in the future BattleNet link-up could also see the sum of all my activity. If you’re already showing the details of who you play with, the values of your achievements is not altogether secret information really.

BlizzCon Tickets

BlizzCon tickets (Instance 190 & 192) were darn rare and I’m not surprised that they all sold; it is insane to say that they sold in 5 seconds, but the story held water. That is demand on a scale which is staggering. Randy came up with a great point; the distance to the server directly impacts your position in the queue. eg. Ping of 15 = chance, ping of 1200 = reading about it later.

The distance to the server having a direct affect on the position in queue is one that I had not pondered, but makes for a very challenging scenario if they wished to provide a more “random selection” within a potential pool of ticket holders. How could it be more fair than straight web purchase? I’m not sure.

What I don’t understand is why there is only two ways the sale could be managed: either tickets locked to a specific purchaser, or tickets fully unfettered which offers total abuse in re-sale. What the guys discussed made sense, but I think there is every opportunity for the purchaser to be allocated tickets, and to feed them back into the blizzard system if they are not required, or be required to go through a process to change the proposed ticket user using a store interface at Blizzard. I mean there must be a way to verify, even if that is making the purchaser the authorised contact for future dealings for that ticket. eg. Mates won’t mind working out details through a contact point, but a re-seller will not want the contact overhead needed. Make it a little work and they’ll do it less?

I think it comes down to any more sophisticated system is more work, and would not 100% prohibit the bulk purchasers from gaining advantage. And perhaps that in itself means that the effort to result is not high enough to make economic sense to the event organisers. Fair, but sheesh, you’d be pissed if you missed tickets. As an Aussie I was never going due to the distance, but I can tell as well that I was never going to get a ticket due to the ping time between Oz and Blizzard’s HQ.

I feel for anyone who was passionate enough to ebay some tickets as a higher fee; go have a blast guys.

Auction House Paid-app

I agree totally with Scott J that a one off payment would be better for me, and no way I’ll be paying monthly for this, so won’t be using it. I get that it is an option, and more power to the folks who are going to pay, but do not like it. Paying for bandwidth use is ok, but it stinks of next the Armory being charged, then something else small, or even the revenue model for wow going to a time based model from a base subscription. What about raiding as micro-transactions?

No end in sight for this, especially when the player base drops away – will the stakeholders accept graciously the decline in players and therefore decline in revenue? Or will pressure from financial parts of the business try to keep the revenue high, charge for more stuff, more pets, more small services? Ya, you bet. I know what I’d want them to do if I had a 0.25% stake in the business.

Distraction value – Hottest female model?

Blood Elf, then Human, then Draenei, then Night Elf. No way in hell Tauren, Goblin, or Undead get a look in. However I think the undead female model looks darn mean, in fact the Undead models in general look the meanest; then Tauren.

Barron Mount in Stratholme

In my humble opinion has to be more than a 1% now, as it took me around 50 odd attempts, but totally agree that it is the same small amount each time. I wish I had not sold the nice runeblade that dropped too, that puppy was some excellent RP style gear. I might go back for it.