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Ol' Grumpy and the Mists of Pandaria

Matthew Rossi

First off, howdy. You may remember me from such posts as this Firelands one, or this post decrying pointless elitism, or this one calling for the return of class based quests. As the loveable old codger that I am, I'm here to hike up my waist (note the kicky plate skirt I have on for the purpose) and gripe about things in World of Warcraft that I think could be improved. In some cases these things really bother me. Some of this stuff is on Blizzard, but some of it is based on player behavior, which means we have to fix it.

Before I do, though, I wanted to mention a couple of places where they did improve things. Cooking and archaeology, two of my least favorite things to do in the game are much less painful, and so kudos to that. I'm told fishing is better as well, but since I'll never ever fish, I'll just have to take your word for that. And now, onto the firestorm of complaints!

1 - Daily Quest Randomization

As much as I personally hate daily quests (it rhymes with 'Pike Ire') I will admit that the implementation on most of the new daily questing for factions in Mists of Pandaria is probably about as well implemented as it could possibly be, and as such I've chosen to focus on an aspect of the implementation that I think is more hit or miss than the rest. That is to say, the way it's determined which dailies you get in a specific day.

This is something I notice with every faction but I'm going to pick on the August Celestials because they're the worst about this. I have two level 90 characters working on rep. I have now defended the Temple of the Jade Serpent for four days. I don't want to defend them anymore. Please, for the love of Zod, put in something that checks to see what quests you've done over the past five days and doesn't give the exact same ones to you again, I'm begging you here. How about Niuzao Temple? I'd happily go defend that for a change of pace.

Ol' Grumpy's faults with Mists of Pandaria

2 - Player Entitlement and Behavior

Frankly, people, you do not own those nodes. No, you don't. You own the node when you tap the node and get the ore out of it. You own that flower when you pick it. I've seen some egregious behavior from players lately. I was doing dailies in Vale of Eternal Blossoms, fighting my way to a node surrounded by crocodiles, when a DK dropped from the sky onto the node and mined it while I was fighting. Okay, I said to myself, kind of a jerk move but I'll move on to the next node. I do so, and mister DK is now fighting his way to that node, so I mine it since I figure we've established that's okay to do. As you can no doubt guess, spitting and profanity followed.

You do not own the node. It doesn't matter if you saw it first. You cannot call dibs on nodes. It's the same with quest mobs, the same with quest items, the same with everything in the game and it always has been for eight years now. I realize that the leveling experience as World of Warcraft has aged has concentrated players at level cap, which moves forever further and further away from those lower level zones, and this may give players a false sense of ownership of nodes and resources and mobs, but in point of fact you're expected to compete with other players for them. They're designed for this.

Unrelated but just as awful is the sudden scourge of flagged players parking themselves directly on top of quest givers. On a PvP server, anything goes, I get that. Otherwise, knock it off.

3 - Some Scenario Improvements

I'm not talking about being able to kick players and get replacements, because that's coming. What I want to see are some improvements to the scenario experience. I already really love these things, don't mistake me, I just want to see some things get better. Yes, I'm the kind of guy who dumps hot caramel sauce all over my sundae.

First off, the Arena of Annihilation was a good move, and more scenarios should have quests with rewards at the end, and not necessarily gear rewards either. The Theramore scenario would be greatly improved by getting a shot at the tabard/bombling via a quest. The brew at the end of Unga Ingoo should be something you can get a small supply for use outside of the scenario, ala Noggenfogger back in the day.

Secondly, that thing I said before about daily quests and not getting the same ones too often? Definitely use that here, too. I am beyond tired of Theramore, guys.

4 - Faction Implementation

I get that they wanted to throttle what factions we do, so they put August Celestials and Shaqdo Pan behind the Golden Lotus. I get that we're helping the Golden Lotus in order to impress those two factions so that they work with us. That being the case, I have some troubles with how this was implemented.

First off, if I'm working with the Golden Lotus to impress these guys, shouldn't they be impressed? I'm not a fan of tying reputations to reputations in this fashion. I'd have rather have seen a system where there were three or four reputations and you could only work on two of them each day, so that you could choose which one to level instead of needing to work on Golden Lotus in order to unlock the ones who had the recipes you were actually trying to get. But if they're going to tether them, shouldn't every 10 points of Golden Lotus rep give me 1 point of AC or Shado Pan rep or something?

Secondly, at least at first, the August Celestials rep grind is extremely truncated. the Shado Pan give a fair amount of quests in Kun-Lai and Townlong to boost your rep with them, but the August Celestials just feels short and in two cases, pointless. At least the Jade Serpent and Niuzao quests feel like I'm doing something worthwhile. Red Crane and White Tiger have me engaging in pointless brawling. Oh, and that 'run up the mountain with this torch and dodge tornadoes' quest cannot die painfully enough. Yes, I know you can run around the edge for most of the way, it's still bloody awful.

Ol' Grumpy's faults with Mists of Pandaria

5 - The creeping return of bad dungeon ettiquette

This has gotten so bad that when I was leveling my worgen and the tank dropped in a hailstorm of blaming the healer and profanities (when in fact it was mostly his own fault for trying to chain pull like he was in epics from the last tier of Mists raiding instead of greens from Krasarang) I ended up tanking as fury and the healer thanked me for it because I understood the concepts of CC and stopping to let the healer get mana.

Look, I'm not telling you that each dungeon needs to start with a group hug. I'm not demanding a running commentary explaining how your day was and telling me what kind of dog is your favorite (I'm partial to large breeds, but I'm fairly willing to hug up on any breed of dog, really) but I do think certain things are fairly common sense by this point in time. Don't pull when the healer is forty yards behind you drinking. Don't berate the DPS constantly for their low DPS when you won't move the adds out of death on the ground. Don't complain when the DPS pulls aggro when you were just griping about how low their DPS is. Don't go on some kind of weird obscene tear spewing forth profanities, racial and/or sexual based epithets, things like this.

When an undergeared fury warrior can tank a dungeon better than the original tank, not because of class mechanics but because he's aware of things like healer mana, CC, and how not to be a frothing, unpleasant parody of a person, there's room for improvement is what I'm saying. This one's squarely on us as players.

Mists of Pandaria is here! The level cap has been raised to 90, many players have returned to Azeroth, and pet battles are taking the world by storm. Keep an eye out for all of the latest news, and check out our comprehensive guide to Mists of Pandaria for everything you'll ever need to know.

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