[World of Warcraft] A thread I’ve been following elsewhere references a theme I’ve heard before: the release of unfinished content in an expansion has become acceptable. The poster states that there are several unfinished aspects in WoW’s expansion, The Burning Crusade, and declares that the solution to this problem is that the developers should have made it harder to level so that they had time to fix it, after release.
How has this become modus operandi?
Without burning down too many bridges, it’s safe to say that most of EQ’s expansions were released missing some end game content. A lot of time, this missing content was locked behind a broken quest or encounter, preventing players from getting to it. Be it the simplicity of the yes-it-was-in-game-you-can’t-find it quest of the Holy Avenger (odd how exact same situation played out 7 years later in EQ2 with the Frogloks), to the non-functioning key quest of Vex Thal, to the broken Rathe council, and so on. There have been reports, both with some proof and others of the “my friend knows someone who knows someone who knows a dev’s girlfriend” type that state these were broken on purpose. Basically the timeline to complete was the most important aspect, and complete or no, the expansion would ship on the promised day.
So back in WoW, there are a few “unfinished” aspects. Apparently the higher level raid content was largely untested and is unwinnable, at least at the current time. Factions worldwide get stuck at certain levels and stay that way until you hit 70. Itemization in some parts seems somewhat random. There are a lot of people who seem to think this is ok. I’m not saying bugs are always avoidable – after all, I work in software design, and I know we are constantly fixing bugs – but when a product is shipped with distinct missing parts, that just isn’t right. Would you accept that McDonald’s gave you your hamburger without the meat, with the promise that at some point in the future it would be provided to you? But it’s ok to take my money now, and I’ll take the half-finished burger, and go wait over here?
The poster’s comment that Blizzard should have made it harder to level, just so they could have time to finish their released expansion, really rubs me wrong. The sad part is I’ve heard it before. Many times, for years.