Will the new approach to the 3.2 raid dungeon satisfy the hard-core raiders?

Okay, so more details about the next raid instance were recently released. If you missed the announcement:

  • New epic 10- and 25-player raid dungeon with five encounters, with each encounter being unlocked one week at a time
  • A more intuitive structure for harder encounters. This raid dungeon will have four different versions: 10-player, 25-player, 10-player Heroic, and 25-player Heroic, with each one using a separate lockout.
  • Introduction of the Crusaders’ Tribute! Each of the Heroic mode instances has a new tribute system that will limit players on the number of attempts they get in the Coliseum each week to present a greater challenge for the most battle-hardened heroes. Additional rewards can be earned depending on the number of attempts left in the tribute run each week when the final boss is defeated

Okay, so there is a total of 5 bosses, and you can kill bosses up to 4 times a week (ie. the 4 different “modes”). So, if a guild wants, they could (in theory) start with just the hard-mode encounters. The flaw with this is that it’s likely the same bosses that they would be killing multiple times, increasing the likelihood of getting bored with those bosses. I mean, there were a lot more than 5 bosses in Ulduar, and some people have already quit the game due to boredom with the high-end raiding content.

The new raid dungeon does bring one thing that may help the hard-core raiders: One boss is being unlocked at week intervals. This has the benefit of pacing guilds a little better, and guarantees that it will take at least 5 weeks before all the bosses are downed. However, with only 5 bosses, this may only hold people’s attentions for a short amount of time if the bosses are easy to kill and get turned into farming-mode in a matter of hours, instead of taking days & weeks to learn the bosses.

Crusader tribute will limit how many times you can attempt the boss… okay, this is more on track. However, if it’s the same boss as the normal-mode instance, you can just master the normal-mode one, and then they can probably just go into the Hard-mode one without having to really learn a whole new strategy. So, time will tell if this fills the need for newer & harder content.

Now, for the more casual raiders, the regular mode encounters won’t have the Crusader Tribute effect, so you can go in and take as many tries as you need to get the boss down. The normal mode encounters will still have the phasing, where bosses are unlocked at weekly intervals.

Time will tell if this fills the appetite of the hard-core raiders, or if this will just be an appetizer on their way back into farming Ulduar…

7 Comments

  1. Posted June 18, 2009 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    I HEART the new structures of the raids the devs seem to be moving towards. I mean, 5, 10, 25, 10H and 25H seems to really cater to both large AND small guilds as well as PUGers, which is great.

  2. Moohtree
    Posted June 18, 2009 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    To talk a bit more about WotlK raiding from a relatively new WoW raider point of view …

    I’m not a hardcore gamer and didnt even play during BC. My main is a warrior tank, who got to 80 just as WotlK came out… So my main got through the 5-man –> Naxx 25, OS 25 —> Malygos 25 progression path and it actually took a few months because i was new to the game and needed to learn to actually play and raid. I didnt really feel the content was that easy at first.

    For my druid tree alt however, who just hit 80 last saturday, no need for any 5 man. Questing items and NR greens got our alt naxx 10 run to 1 shot every boss including KT. Even Malygos was killed easily right after (still with alt run and no super geared toon in the raid). Now less than 1 week after hitting 80, i’m almost to my 4 pc T7 bonus, which i probably won’t get, since i’m starting on ulduar 10 tonight …

    Now what i’ve heard from the people who actually raided in BC is that you had to get attuned and run through previous tier content for a few weeks before being ready for new content. The fact that i may get Tier 8 less than a week after hitting 80 really made me wonder about the game difficulty … and especially knowing that these were my first times healing in raids ever.

    The new 10 – 25 – 10H and 25H modes for newer tier can be a good thing if it’s done properly, but could also be just as bad or even make things worse and push some raiders away from the game for good if it’s not at least a bit more challenging than what we’ve seen so far.

  3. Facepaints
    Posted June 18, 2009 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

    heck yes this sounds sick might actually add some excitement to raids again cause as of now they are super droll after like a full clear at least this will require a 5 week progression and keep me in there and wanting more for a while :D

  4. Taliindor
    Posted June 18, 2009 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

    I’m in a 10 man guild that is top 50+ on guild ox’s strict 10 man world rankings. As a guild we still find Ulduar presents plenty of challenges. I guess the key being we didn’t rush through to clear. We tried a lot of different achievments and hard modes every week. Those people that already have Ulduar on farm or have quit out of borden are beyond hard-core and are the tiniest fraction of any server population. Most servers have only a handfull of guilds that have cleared or less. I think blizz got Ulduar down pretty good as far as challenge. I also think the ultra hard-core that clear everything instantly are a low priority for blizzard when it comes to raid design. They are more worried about pleasing the millions, not the thousands.

  5. Posted June 18, 2009 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    I have always been of the opinion especially with the Hard Modes, it is up to the individual player and guild to set the goals. If you think the content is too easy then handicap yourself somehow to make it harder. That is what the hard modes are about. Blizzard just had to code some encounters that way so that the masses could understand.

  6. Facepaints
    Posted June 18, 2009 at 2:48 pm | Permalink

    yea unfortunately my guild likes to play it safe the thre freaking time and never try those acheivements its kinda of lame and may be the reason i dont enjoy raids as much as i used to i should prolly /gquit :D lol thanks for pointinf that out Taliindor

  7. Lazerkins
    Posted June 20, 2009 at 6:40 pm | Permalink

    Personally the reason I really stopped raiding was because I had no interest in hard modes to unlock one boss that has a small loot table. There was no drive after clearing Ulduar Pre-nurfs to do that again… I think there are more people in my situation than the ones who think Ulduar was boring easy or anything of the sort. It was a challenging instance that added some interesting raid encounters but learning 5 fights over again to unlock one just didnt seem like fun to me.