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Thursday, February 09, 2006

Why WoW is a bad game, reason #7

Instancing

One of the best things about WoW is also one of the worst things. I'm talking about instances. It's great to be able to go on a adventure with your guild without being disrupted by others or have to wait in line to kill a boss. But having soo many instances in WoW also have a negative impact on the community itself. It's no longer possible to go into a dungeon alone and just spontaneously group together with the people you'll find there, and no, meetings stones isn't a working solution for this.

This means that people who don't have enough people in their guilds will be forced to stand in the middle of the major cities and spam "Looking for group/more/priest" in a hour or two, just to be able to enter the dungeon. This is both time consuming and defiles the other so important chat channels with spam and ruins the community feeling in-game. Also big guilds tend to become very elitish because of this, and refuses to cooperative with other guilds and players.

The other very appearant negative side effect instancing have is to suck the world dry from players. Each server hosts a maximum of 5000 players each and most often only half of that amount play together at once. There's around 25 instances in the game, and they require a group of 5-10 people or a raid of 40 people to be able to clear them. That means if just 10 of the big guilds are doing raid instances, that's 400 people gone from the server.

The introduction of battlegrounds didn't do much to improve the situation. Above is a screenshot from Hillsbrad Foothills, where people just spontaneously lined up together to counter-attack the horde. Although this isn't the best example of cooperation between players and world PvP, it proves my point somewhat.

This is Hillsbrad Foothills again, before Alterac Valley was released, after that this area became almost empty. The same thing happens with every other area of the game, they become vast of players and you can no longer visit a area with the intention to brawl with the enemy players or cooperate with members from your own faction.

Blizzard constantly releases more and more instances into the game, so the effect will be more and more appearant with each new introduction of a instance. In no way is a instance needed for every little dungeon in the game.

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