The pendulum swings: Is Warhammer about to crash?

A week ago, the gaming blog-o-sphere was rife with posts talking about how much fun Warhammer Online is. Everyone (I’m speaking figuratively here) was RvRing and questing and PQing and having a grand old time. Now, not so much. Blogger after blogger are putting up posts expressing concern with the leveling rate or the leveling style or the lack of depth in the game.

These are people who have played the game for a few weeks and are basing their posts on real and significant experience, so I’m not going to disagree with them one bit; we all come at these games with our own expectations and desires. A lot of people seem to be just killing time for the new WoW Expansion as much as anything, and there’s much doom and gloom about how Warhammer will be a ghost town when Lich King launches.

I can’t deny this makes me sad, because they may be right.

I also have to admit I was feeling a wee bit of burnout/excess grindiness earlier this week, after I spent Monday and Tuesday nights playing all evening (and having fun, I might add). My personal poison is PQ Grinding. Like everyone else, I’m finding it harder and harder to find groups to do PQs with; and I don’t feel comfortable skipping them since my character is so dependent on the gear we get as Influence Rewards. Killing Easy rated mobs over and over for 100 Influence each gets kind of dull. And as soon as you finish one, you literally are directed to the next one and have to start all over again. It feels endless.

I’m bored with Scenarios as well, but those I can safely ignore since I can get Renown via open world RvR (which is wicked fun); the only way to get influence rewards is to do PQs.

But a funny thing happened on the way to the weekend. I barely played at all Wednesday, and Thursday I didn’t log in until after 10. Not having a lot of time before bed, I figured I’d just grind some Influence and hit the hay. It felt good to step back into the shoes of my Witch Hunter, and I just started running around, knocking the dust off my gear and making sure I hadn’t forgotten any skills or anything. And instead of grinding Influence, I got caught up in a quest to find a stolen chest. This ended up being the first step of a “treasure map” kind of quest. Each step gave a clue as to where to find the next step. And it was a lot of fun.

I had to log soon after, but now I find myself counting down the minutes until I can get out of here and start the weekend. I don’t know how long this will last…I might be starting to feel the burnout again by the end of the night. I can never predict these things. It was just weird to almost grudgingly log in last night, and then end up being really happy to be in-game.

Some small part of me *wants* to get burned out on Warhammer, to be honest. There’re a bunch of single player games incoming that I really want to play, and there’s the Mines of Moria expansion for LOTRO set to arrive on Nov. 18th. Will I contribute to the ghost town-ification of Warhammer Online?

I just don’t know. I’m going to play while I’m having fun, and stop playing when I’m not. These are games, after all. If they aren’t fun, there’s no point in playing them.

To the bloggers who’re leaving, I sincerely hope you find a game that you find enjoyable, and thanks for helping to make Warhammer enjoyable during the time you were in-world with the rest of us.

8 thoughts on “The pendulum swings: Is Warhammer about to crash?

  1. I think it’s obvious that many WAR players are also WoW players, and WotLK will take them back. How long a stay will that be though? WoW will still be all about the raids. WAR will still be all about the RvR. Two entirely different games, if you ask me.

    Same with LOTRO, that’s primarily a PvE game. The people who were hardcore PvMPers in LOTRO have gone to WAR, possibly permanently. Others will be back for Moria.

    Some might just play their favorite PvE game *and* WAR for RvR to get the best of both worlds.

  2. I’m more of an RvR guy I’m finding out, so WAR it is for me for a while now. The only AAA MMOG that’s a possible diversion for me will be Champions Online if it hits next spring. But even then, I’m not sure I’ll be “done” in WAR. CoW’s running great, and there’s still so much to do in WAR. I can’t imagine leaving it anytime soon.

  3. I think if my sister and I had hooked up with a great guild, we would have lasted longer in Warhammer. Being just she and I for the most part though, our enjoyment is waning and we’re talking about heading back to WoW to dust off our hunters and get back in the groove for Lich King. It’s not that we don’t like Warhammer; we do. There just aren’t enough hours in the day and to really have awesome fun with the RvR, it seems a great guild is a must. In WoW, we can be a duo and enjoy ourselves more readily (we aren’t raiders, there definitely aren’t enough hours in the day for those high end phat l00t fests) and worry less about being unguilded.

  4. @JoBildo

    I think that those who are enjoying the game the most are those who are doing alot of RvR. I have a friend that was not into the PvP in WoW, but just loves the RvR in WAR and hooked in the game.

    I myself do enjoy the RvR as well, but I prefer PvE content, and I think that WAR is thin in the area, at least so far.

  5. I agree WAR is thin on the PvE side, although it does have some real gems out there and even some of the PQs can turn from what you expect to be the normal grind to be a totally awesome fight. For me though it is really about the RvR. It is what I was waiting for and what I spend most of my time doing, be it week nights grouped with one regular friend or a weekend in a guild Warband. We are always queued for scenarios or in the Open RvR areas.

    Its not something I want to do all the time though so for when I want casual laid back PvE time, exploring, questing or raiding then I have LOTRO. The lifetime subscription there lets me continue to have my well crafted PvE World environment for when I burn out of too much War. Then when I do get home from work some nights and feel the need for carnage I have WAR ๐Ÿ™‚ It kind of fills that FPS type of slot. You can get in and for a short session and have a blast , then leave just as easily.

  6. There really *was* a snowstorm of posts about all that this week, wasn’t there — I’m guilty myself. I wonder how much of that is the blog-gestalt mind? Interesting phenomenon.

    Anyway, I did finally realise that my irritation with WAR this week wasn’t an irritation with WAR — I was just having a bad week all round. The Black Dog snuck in while I wasn’t looking I guess, and kept mocking me for getting old(er). Having figured that out, I went back in just to play (as opposed to playing to feel better, which I *know* doesn’t work) and… had a great time.

    C’est la vie. Take time off, go away, come back, play other stuff. Nobody will outlevel you — well everyone will, but we all have alts ๐Ÿ˜€

  7. I’ve noticed that the longer players are into the MMO scene, the easier it is for them to get burned out and become increasingly flip-floppy between titles. It’s the “grass is greener on the other side” phenomenon, where they can’t settle down because they’re growing quick to judge a game and hold it to ever-higher standards that eventually no game can satiate. I guess there’s a junkie metaphor in there ๐Ÿ˜€

    It’s cool if you feel this way. I don’t get the same sense from the blogosphere about WAR; I see as many excited, happy posts as I do critical ones, and many of the critical ones are of the “we like this game but this needs to be fixed/tweaked/added so it can be even better?” variety. The honeymoon period is over, and now we’re settling down into the ups-and-downs of the daily operations of a MMO.

    Personally, I’m really please with how fast Mythic has been responding to some of these criticisms and suggestions, especially their recent note of upping XP on the PvE side.

    But hey, no judgments here. If you’re happier playing something else, then more power to you — it’s your gaming dollar! But “ghost town”? I can’t see that happening, not even close.

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