Monday, April 4, 2011

Dead Cities- Is there a solution?

Behold the epic power that is the Storm Helm and the.... *facepalm* Pauldrons of Surging Mana...

There's an interesting post on WoW Insider today: New Fishing Dailies Appearing in Undercity. This implies that Blizzard may be adding some new dailies in the other cities in an effort to bring more people back to them. That's because Blizzard made a huge mistake...

They killed the cities in game.

Okay, so maybe not ALL the cities. Orgrimmar and Stormwind are very much alive; they're the lag capitals of the game! But have you been to any of the other cities recently? No? I thought not. Neither has anyone else. By removing the 'major hub with portals to other cities' combination from the game, Blizzard has made the abandonment of cities even worse!

Deeprun Tram anyone? .....Anyone?

I completely understand their reasoning for removing these portal hubs. They wanted people to see the world they'd just made, to have to actually travel in it- and most of all to keep people from leaving their hearths in Dalaran so they could have an easy way to get around to all the cities, but never actually being in the new game content. It was all very valid reasoning! The thing they didn't take into account was that no one wants to travel anymore! 

Now I LOVE Ironforge. It's my favorite city in game. I like the look and feel of it, and I play a dwarf. I HAVE to like Ironforge! I would gladly set my hearth there, in fact nothing would please me more! But currently, the time it would take me to have to take the tram or fly to the Stormwind, just to be able to portal to other areas of the game to reach the new content is a huge turnoff. Sure I can take flight paths, and boats, and trams betwixt the cities, but they all take a fairly large chunk of time between them, and why should I bother to do so when I can hearth to SW and it's all right there?

HELLOOOOooooooooooooooo!!!

When I took the screenshot above, there were a total of three people in all of Ironforge, counting me. I was the only 85, the others were an 83 priest, and a 68 rogue. This makes me sad! And it's even worse in those more out of the way cities such as Darnassus. I remember during the days of Shattrath and Dalaran, while most people did idle in those cities, any of the cities you portaled too (With perhaps the exception of Silvermoon and Exodar) there were always a fair number of people hanging out in them. I'm sure a lot of this had to do with the lack of auction houses in these locations, but the majority of the cities in the old world had some kind of activity in them. 

The trouble is, what to do about it now? A hub/portal city can hardly be added now- what in the world would it actually be lorewise? Splitting up the portals to the new content zones would just be an annoyance on top of the fit the community (myself included) would pitch. And Blizzard would never bring itself to put in portals between the cities when there's already a transportation system in game.

The fact that they're adding these dailies tells me that they realize this is an issue (Blizzard's always seemed to try and combat the issues of abandoned and too little used areas) and they're trying to correct it and bring life back into these wonderful places. I'm just not sure that a daily or two is going to be enough!

~~Brunnstag~~

PS- Yes, I did use the Pauldrons of Surging Mana for a fair time after I first reached level 70. I was a complete huntard and couldn't manage my mana very well by aspect dancing... much to my boyfriend's annoyance I INSISTED I needed the extra intellect and spirit they gave me! Be kind, Brunn was my first toon! Plus that helmet made me look like Shredder!

11 comments:

ThePinkPally said...

I agree, Brunn. Can I call you Brunn? Once upon a time, back in Vanilla, Ironforge was the de facto captial of the Alliance. (Largely because it was the only Alliance city with an auction house, but that's beside the point.) It's sad to see it so empty now. Population in cities outside the capital seems to vary from server to server (well, except for Exodar), but they are by and large neglected now.

I'd love to see permanent portals to all the major cities added in a patch. It seems perfectly logical to me that with Deathwing threatening the world and tensions between the Horde and Alliance mounting over scarce resources, that the leaders would want a way to stay in touch and be able to move troops quickly to where they're needed most. It would make the different races feel a lot more connected IMO. More like the allied kingdoms they are instead of lemmings tagging after Varian and Grom.

Brunnstag said...

@ PinkPally- Indeed you can call me Brunn :3 I agree, it would make sense for there be nearby portals to move troops in and out of the major faction cities.

Perhaps make these portals available in the nearest closest town to the city? Such as Ironforge and Kharanos, or Stormwind and Goldshire? That way, one could still hearth into the major cities with no problem (Whichever one they please) but still have the slight travel time by having to fly out of that city and down to the other cities portals? That would also have the higher level characters moving through the intro zones as well, which is always a good bolster for the lowbies. Blizzard could also add say 'Bronzebeard Warriors' waiting to travel through them to Stormwind to fight cultists and such...

That's one thing I miss from BC. NPC mages were always opening portals for other NPCs to use. it just made sense!

Nairu said...

This is actually a real problem for Nairu's guild, the Ironforge Guards, as not only all the PvE and PvP chars are hanging out in Stormwind these days, but the RPers are, too. Patrolling the city hardly makes sense when you don't come across anyone. Of course I still have my hearth in the forge, and fly down to Stormwind when I need to use the portals. I don't like humans and I don't like Stormwind and I'm seriously annoyed by it being the RP hub for about everyone. We have this large and beautiful world, why hang out in that silly city all day! But I'm rambling here. Lemme just add that I do love Ironforge and will stay loyal to it even if they were to move it to Outland for whatever improbable reasons. :)

Kallixta said...

This implies to me the now would be a better time to raid certain cities For The Alliance or For The Horde, before changes repopulate those emptier towns. And once the population has been rebalance, we could go raid the now lesser-populated Stormwind and Orgrimmer, eh?

I don't see the logic of having all the Cataclysm portals in one Capital. It's too lazy. The biggest pain if they were at different cities is when you're running dailies for different factions.

Melyanna said...

I feel the same way about Darnassus the way you do about Ironforge. It's where I "grew up" as a little druid and spent most of my time. I'm simply not a fan of Stormwind. It's a shame Darnassus is so empty, being such a beautiful city and all!

Brunnstag said...

@ Nairu- It's a shame your RP is having to suffer from this lack of forethought from Blizzard! HOPEFULLY, with the setup they've done for the 3 dwarven clans and Magni's 'death, they can use the lore to make Ironforge viable again. Either way, Ironforge is made of epic!

@ Kallixta- INORITE? Hit those cities while they're down!

@ Melyanna- It's a shame what's happened to Darnassus the last few expansions... They ive no one any incentive whatsoever to go there at all. Terrible injustice because the city really is gorgeous!

~~Brunn~~

Gabe said...

@Kallixta great idea, but my guild can already raid org even at its current state... if the server would stop crashing when garrosh hits 5%...

buut, I do think they should do someething to repopulate these cities, and dailies wont do it. i would be there for all of 5 minutes then head back to SW. however, SW is my favorite ally city, because its the only one with bright colors. i absolutely hate the dark colors of darn and IF. thats probably th biggest beef i have with 4/5 new zones, not to mention 90% of the old ones. However for the horde side, i would like to see the hub city be TB, I just like the style there better. But, all in all, spreading out the population somehow would be better. The greatest though would be if the could go back to the 1 major city, for ally and horde,fotmat.

Gorman said...

I think having the dailies also in other cities is mainly for the 1-60 crowd, who might find setting their hearth in a different city more convenient to where they are currently questing.

And rather than have portals Between cities, they could have portals to all the 80-85 zones in every city, which would allow end-gamers a choice of where to set their hearthstones.

Jason said...

@Kallixta

Portals in one city make sense if you're marshaling your forces for combat in the new zones.

What doesn't make sense is not having a portal from SW/Org to the other cities to move troops and supplies from there to the "front line" so to speak.

Rawer said...

My crazy great idea I had to fix this aalong with fix MM part of MMORPG is Events.
For the cities part, we have this cool thing in the world like Deathwing killing (mostly) everything in an entire zone. Now tha we killed his kids and main servent Cho'Gall, why not make him blast our cities with fire from time to time ? Or if not him maybe some dragons for open world cities and dragonkins for underworld cities like Ironforge and Undercity ... we need invasions, actions, something amazing to happen from time to time, not fishing dailies.

Freud's Mum said...

I might have missed this, but what i would call an easy fix would be to have the portals to the CATA zones in ALL the cities... let people choose where they wanna park their toons... I just assumed tehy were gonna do this at launch... save a fair bit of lag too...


and if they want more movement, just put a few different dailies in each... a percentage of people would for sure do the rounds... but they would need to travel old school...