Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Played Lately: World of Warcraft

  • Syp, that rabble rouser from Bio Break, decided to ask his many, many readers what we thought about the recently added incentive loot bags for World of Warcraft's The Oculus. Although I commented on his post, I wanted to tell a little story of my relationship with The Oculus. I like to call it "A Self-Fulfilling Prophesy."

  • As I leveled up during Wrath of the Lich King, I rode the wave of players tackling the leveling instances. There were several people available to take on Utgarde Keep, The Nexus, Azjol-Nerub, Ahn-Kahet, Drak'Tharon Keep, Violet Hold.... you get the picture. I never had to wait long to get an invite, even though I was leveling my mage. But then I burned out and the wave passed me by.

  • When I came back, I was surprised that it wasn't impossible to find groups for the level 80 dungeons. And the daily heroic quests always gave me a way into the instances. All except The Oculus. No one, even when the daily heroic quest was available, ran The Oculus. I heard all the horror stories about how terrible it was, but I just wrote the place off.

  • Then Patch 3.3 hit and the Dungeon Finder had everyone running instances like crazy. After a very successful first run (I think it was ToC), I queued up a second instance. At this point, you can tell where the story is going. When we first zoned in, there was some grumbling. "Oh no, not Oculus." But one of the players (a blood elf paladin) explained that they recent nerfs to the instance had made the place super easy.

  • And you know what? He was right. The Oculus is not all that hard. The worst part is learning your way around, dealing with the vertical space, and learning how to control the dragons. Heck, since I didn't know exactly what I was doing, grabbed the wrong dragon. We had three tanks, one healer, and one DPS and we still beat the final boss.

  • On my most recent trip, the random tank left the group as soon as we zoned in. We requeue and the second tank left as soon as he showed up too. Wanting to get the thing over with, the druid in the group decided to switch to bear form and tank the instance himself while we searched for a DPSer instead. And he did a great job, even with the wrong spec.

  • The Oculus is not hard. It's not even that long of an instance. People have just bought into the fact that the place is terrible without applying any thought to issue. If an extra loot bag convinces people to overcome their prejudice, I would consider their quick fix a success.


  1. @ Jayedub - Wait a second. When was the last time you played WoW? :)

  2. Ummm, it's been awhile, but I still hate it, that much I can remember!

    I believe there was a patch that scaled the dragons you flew with your gear, but that was just after I quit playing. But before that it was just such a huge pain.

  3. @ Jayedub - Between scaling the dragons with iLevels, nerfing the encounters non-heroic levels, and adding the extra loot, there is no good reason not to run Oculus anymore. But you are not required to like it.