Not Worth their Weight in Loot
My buddy hated the ICC instances, particularly the final one, Halls of Reflection. For those of you “unfortunate” enough not to have experienced that one, it’s essentially two gauntlet events; in the first, 10 waves of monsters and two bosses attack the players. The monsters replicate player classes and can be extremely hard for a tank to round up. Players often huddled in corners to force the monsters to run to them and group up, but even then, one careless player could cause a lot of problems. This was followed by a gauntlet where you had to outrun the Lich King. Poor dps in the gauntlet guaranteed a wipe. It could be frustrating at times.
The instances, you see, dropped purple loot. People wanted to get the loot. The loot inside was equivalent to the “normal” raid loot of the previous patch, ilevel 232. It was, I suppose, a chance for people who hadn’t raided earlier in WotLK to be a bit better prepared for the ICC raid.
The thing was, the difficulty of the instances versus the rewards were simply not suitable in my buddy’s eyes. You could get obscene amount of dungeon badges elsewhere anyway, so there was no real reason to go out of your way to do those dungeons. Also, if you’d raided at all, you probably didn’t need the gear. Blizzard had simply made the dungeons unattractive.
That said, my buddy really likes the Zandalari instances. He’s already grinded them over and over to get most everything he needs, but it’s still all he really wants to do when we play. And that’s the crux of this post, dear reader, because I cannot stand them. I find the “cost” of the new instances – be it time, repair bills, or simply stress – nowhere near the benefit you may get from the gear.
Let me be clear; I don’t think the new instances are too hard. I find them to be challenging and enjoyable. However, I also find that a lot of the people I end up pugging with (which in a group of 5 is usually only 1 or 2 people) incapable of managing the encounters. I don’t know whether it’s been extreme bad luck or what, but it seems that nearly every healer or dps we have to PuG dies over and over on snake boss, can’t avoid the waves on panther boss, can’t kite the beserkers, etc. I always take time to make sure people know fights, too, so it’s not ignorance (though it may be lack of practice).
Now, this is also not a OMG BAD PUGS post. The problem I have, you see, is with the rewards, not the instances themselves. If I can just grind out valor points day by day in the “old” heroics, frequently with few to no wipes, why should I bother with the stress of the new ones? At this point, the “first tier” of heroics can be three manned (as some blogger is proving), so having a slightly incompetent healer or dps isn’t as big a deal, whereas in the Zandalari instances it’s almost certainly a wipefest.
Since a troublesome ZG or ZA often takes 2 or more hours, I simply can’t see a reason to run them. It’s a shame, because I thoroughly enjoy both. I love finishing the gauntlet before bird boss in ZA in just a few minutes; my friends and I have a lot of experience in ZA from the past, so it’s frequently a pleasant surprise to the healer or dps PuGs when we obliterate it. Still, the trouble the rest of the instance causes is not worth the rewards it provides.
In the end, I think it was too soon for another tier of heroics. The ICC dungeons appeared as part of the… 3rd? 4th? patch in WotLK. These are part of the first. I’m sure it was an attempt to make up for having so few new dungeons (not that these are new, but you know what I mean), but when adding dungeons in WotLK the designers didn’t feel it necessary to make them “harder” or “more rewarding” than the previous dungeons until the ICC ones.
What happens with the next dungeons? Will they get even harder? Will there have to be another tier in the LFD tool? It seems unnecessarily complicated, like the dungeons themselves (at least as perceived by the PuGs I’ve encountered). So that’s it. I’m done with them. Troll dungeons indeed, I certainly feel like I was trolled by them.
Stubborn (who would take 10 [insert your least favorite non-Zandalari dungeon here] over 1 Troll dungeon any day)