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World of Warcraft Arena Balance and Sirlin

Here's an amusing post on gameriotby Vir that mentions me. The comments are entertaining too. It's about the balance in World of Warcraft arenas, and making the game into an e-sport.

For the record, I'm available but I don't think Blizzard will call. ;) For one, they might say that fighting game balance doesn't apply to their game, and that I don't know their game. Shrug. The same concepts seem to apply to Puzzle Fighter, Street Fighter, Kongai, Yomi card game, and the other projects I can't tell you about. Balance is balance and the same issues show over and over.

And second, I don't think my article two years ago won me any points there. Even though much of what I complained about has indeed been acknowledged and addressed, I don't think my tone went over well.

Anyway, thanks Vir.


Reader Comments (1)

#4 Main Reason, imo. not only that, but it costs 15$ a month to play the game, so you can't have the casual viewer go check some shit out if they are curious- they will be deterred. Which makes the #1 even more 'not fun to watch'.

4. Class, Spec, and Gear all mean more than skill in the arena.

It has been said many times before, but a fair game would not give material advantages to one player over another. Put very simply, in a truly competitive environment, a player would be able to pick a new Class, Spec, and Gear without having to invest 300+ hours. Time invested should not count for anything in a fair game.

1. World of Warcraft arena matches are not fun to watch.

A non-player would have no idea what is going on or what the rulesets are. You can watch a game like Madden or Street Fighter being played, have no idea what the mechanics are of the game, yet still know who is winning or losing, and even equate what's going on to real life experiences. Most people know what a hail mary pass is, or they can tell when Ryu just punched someone in the face. How many non-WoW people know what the hell frostshock is, what it does, or why it's important?

Even for a player, it's difficult to tell when a class uses a distinct move due to how generic the animations are. Hense the reason for scrolling combat text.

PS- Blizzard sucks at balancing. Warcraft 2, Orcs are best. Starcraft totally imba. BroodWar is like 95% balanced (they got lucky imo). War3, WoW, Diablo 2, all have lots of issues with balance.
We will see how they do on SC2 and D3.

November 29, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSpoR
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