Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Why I won't be purchasing a level 90

As soon as the first digital item went up for sale in the Blizzard store, many players feared---nay---knew where it would eventually end up taking the game. A game where achievement and prestige were no longer prized and the untamed lands of Azeroth became the viciously defended domains of casuals and bads. A game where skill and dedication were no longer championed attributes, but instead players with the largest pocketbooks were guided down the paths of least-resistance. Right then and there, the foundation of this once-great MMO began to shake and crumble.

Years passed, and things only got worse. The announcement of a free boost to level 90 with the next expansion's purchase and the rumor of additional purchasable level 90s from the Blizzard store has created a rumble so deep and so low one can't even imagine how Blizzard could recover...oh wait. Nevermind. That rumbling I'm hearing is just a garbage truck coming down the street. 

Nonetheless, here's why I won't be purchasing a boosted character.

You learn by leveling

Every player who is worth his or her salt knows the best way to prepare for end-game content is to do quests and kill bosses who are about as challenging as a training dummy...and thousands of them of that! Run from point A to point B when told to do so, wielding weapons and spells with deftness as you two-shot each of those 50 boars. Since class abilities don't change at all between level 1 and level cap, spending as much time as possible leveling your character will give you the requisite experience you need to join a top-notch raid, battleground, role-playing, or fishing team. 

Free boost = pay-to-win

Come on...you're telling me you don't remember when during the initial week of MoP's release, the first player on your server hit 90 and then promptly quit, taking half the server with them since all the remaining players could no longer be the first to win the game? Blizzard has done a really interesting thing in response to that player exodus, with the realm mergers and all. But the fact that a player will be able to buy Warlords of Draenor, choose a character to boost to 90, and then promptly log out declaring that "they've won the game," just makes me sick. When will it end? Pretty soon everyone will be a winner at World of Warcraft. You probably won't even have to purchase the game to win it when it's all said and done. 

Contributing to the bads

Given that LFR is one of the most painless, pleasant, enjoyable, fun, exciting, challenging, life-prolonging, personally enriching and rewarding content Blizzard has ever introduced to the game, most people would like to see it remain that way. By allowing noobs to purchase a near-max level character and level it up alone in the midst of vitriol launched by the likes of me; in allowing them to enjoy themselves by playing a game of their choice bought with their hard-earned money, we are contributing to the unavoidable downfall of a game we've all worked so hard to choke to death by vehemently disavowing any semblance of change we don't agree with!

Skipping content skips story

The mental dexterity required to comprehend the timeline shifts between expansions is necessary to decipher the commands and directions of most Battleground and Raid Leaders. Here's a test: Deathwing is both alive and dead at the same time. Dead he may be but owwwww does dat fire singe. It's Schroedinger's dragon all over again. And, whoa, wait here's Arthas but he's dead, and he's not dead. Same goes for Illidan the Villidain...holy hell Garrosh's evil twin from the planet Mookmagook is chillin' out in Nagrand and he appears to need some Xanax. 


Just blew your mind, I know it. See what I mean? All part of the necessary prep to becoming leet.

So why won't I be purchasing a 90?

I think it's obvious.

Thinking about returning to World of Warcraft, starting fresh with a new class or a boosted 90 for Warlords of Draenor, or simply are looking for a fun, respectful community to join? Please consider Sapere Aude on US-Emerald Dream (RPPvP). 


  1. Well, I think I just won the World of Warcraft by reading this post. Oh, wait, you won the game by writing it? /ragequit :D Hilarious stuff! (Totally stealing "Illidan the Villidan"...)

    1. I just can't believe no one's already honored Illidain the Villidain in song...

  2. Having a toon at 90 only gets you started on the road to WoD. While it will skip everything up to WoD most players have already been there, done that.

  3. While I don't disagree with buying a 90 being bad, I don't agree with your points.
    1. You learn by leveling. Now, I could just be an idiot, but I have an 85 ret pally I've played for every level (as opposed to my RAF characters) that I still have no idea how to play. You also can't learn to tank or heal while soloing. You just can't. I'd even argue that you probably won't learn those roles questing, because of the length of the battles in a group don't lend themselves to proper cooldown management. And you don't learn the optimum raiding or PvP dps rotation either. You learn how to kill things fast and have as little downtime as possible.
    Hell, I remember my husband's first Kara run, way back in BC on his hunter. Raid leader asked him to misdirect. He replied that he didn't bother buying that skill, because it didn't look useful. A year later, he was the most successful aoe BM hunter I've ever seen, because of the way he figured to manage his MD, pet healing and other cooldowns. But he learned it at max level, not leveling.
    2. The only time I've ever won the game was when the isle of Quel'Danas broke and nothing would respawn... Seriously, though, I (personally) don't care about vanity item purchases. As long as you can't, say, pay for a whole set of Timeless Isle gear to start off so you can skip the boxes entirely, this is probably okay. But there's a very fine line here.
    3. Well, obviously, since everyone learns how to play their class while leveling, lfr is all sweetness and light and nothing is ever wrong because everyone knows every skill and how it works best in a raid situation. ;)
    4. Be honest. Do you not participate in the rush to max level? Even a little? Do you read the text in every quest to get learn every speck of lore? I have some quests I've done a half dozen times and never paid attention. At least not until I went for Loremaster (and some of those I didn't read either). Leveling is a lot of "Go north, kill # of X. Then come back here and I'll give you money." Yes, Blizz has been better about that in the last couple expansions, but things like phasing, while cool, are also a pain if you need help with something. Or they put in quests that are neat the first time -- if they aren't broken -- but are annoying or nearly impossible for repeated playthroughs. Besides, I love Schrödinger's Cat, so how could his dragon be bad?
    I really don't plan to purchase a 90, either. I have enough characters already. But I can understand why long time or returning players would be tempted.

  4. I see what you did there!

    As I've said in my own post, I have no problems with the service itself. I'm just one of those, "The sky is falling!" folks who doesn't like how much F2P is seeping into a game I pay a monthly sub for.

    Great post :)

    1. Thank you! :)

      While I'm a bit concerned as to where this might be heading, in the end I'm going to give Blizzard the benefit of the doubt. In fact, if they announced they were going to have WoW go F2P, I would wait to hear what it all entailed before I passed final judgment. That's just me though. Based on what they said at Blizzcon, F2P WoW is quite a ways away.

  5. While I agree with you that P2W is bad, I think buying additional level 90 characters will not worsen the situation any more than already is (at least not in the sense of LFR or LFD). I do not agree that you learn to play with leveling, you learn to play your class by passing through test of fire. Every time I need to relearn a certain class, I join a dungeon. It is hard, overwhelming, but if anything, it makes me figure things out on my own and fast.
    Most players have already experienced the previous content, and I think (or at least hope) Blizzard would add an additional restriction to buying extra level 90 character boosts, such as already having at least one character of level 90.

    Also, I love the name of your guild.

  6. I used my free lvl 90 on a hunter, the one class I have yet to really try. But as you mentioned, the learning part is missing, which is little frustrating, but it is also helping me want to learn more, and timeless isle been good training ground for him, I dont plan to buy an upgrade not due to cost but, I like the learning curve you get from 1-90... yes I know I am commenting a couple months late ;)

  7. Haha NP on the timeliness of the comment---it's all relevant. I STILL haven't pre-ordered, and thus, haven't decided which toon I'm going with. Actually, that I can't decide is probably why I haven't pre-ordered, even though I know you don't have to use the boost right away. I'm leaning towards my Alliance shaman (I'm historically Horde) because I plan to experience the story from both sides in the expansion.