World of Warcraft: Shadowlands is already dead to me

“World of Warcraft: Shadowlands,” will be released before the end of this endless year, bringing players of the 16-year-old MMO to Azeroth’s realm of death.

Players will meet the spirits of heroes and villains long departed from the world of the living, pursue after Sylvanas Windrunner as she continues to be pushed harder than Roman Reigns ever was, and will go toe-to-toe once more with godlike entities. WoW: Shadowlands is an epic adventure in the making–

–and I really don’t want to go on it.

I quite love the setting of Warcraft and consider Azeroth a second home for me. There are many aspects of it that I’d love to explore, many storylines that I’d love to see played out, and many adventures I’d still love to go on. 

But chasing after a former Warchief, and Queen of the Damned, who has long outstayed her welcome, is not one of them, nor is battling her unholy godlike master.

There’s no incentive behind the idea, no charm to it that intrigues me, nothing that personally invests me. Some people may be looking forward to finally taking down Sylvanas, who has been visibly evil for several expansions in a row now, but I just feel tired with the idea. Let someone else take care of her as far as I’m concerned, I’m done going after all these epic named characters who keep threatening the entire world.

Back in the Good Ol’ Days…

Back when World of Wacraft first began, you played as a no-name traveler exploring the world of Azeroth for the first time. Your journey began a simple town, with nothing to your name but the clothes on your back and a weapon to fend off the dangers of a foreign and hostile world. A local takes note that you seem to be looking for work, and offers you payment in exchange for you putting your weapon to use. 

The work is nothing glorious. The village needs some local animals culled, and has you collect food and furs in the process. For each job you do, you are compensated, and your reputation eventually draws the attention of a mentor who shows you a few tricks. Before long, you’re slightly more capable as a fighter than when you started, and you have better equipment to show for it as well.

World of Warcraft - original beginning

Eventually, local authorities recognize your skills, and bring you into the fold on a bigger issue happening in the area. A group of bandits have become a legitimate threat, or perhaps a demonic cult, or a bunch of angry Catholics that don’t like your loud goth music.

Whatever the issue, you seem capable of taking it on, and so, you are sent to do just that. You manage to survive your first encounter with this faction, while ensuring they do not, and are then sent to deal with them on a bigger scale.

Throughout your journey, you encounter other travelers as well. It’s a very hostile environment, and so, you have to work together with companions to defeat common foes, and bring order to the frontiers of the world.

There are times where you face unwinnable situations, and have to come back with either better skill, better equipment, better numbers, or a combination of everything. It’s frustrating at times, but also thrilling, because every day brings a new challenge to overcome.

Eventually, you finish the journey you set out to complete. The faction you were sent against is thwarted – for the time being, at least – and you are stronger and wiser for it. But there are other dangers out in the world, and so, another journey is right around the corner. You fresh up your equipment, consult the friends you’ve made along the way, and set out to find the next place to explore.

This may not be the most accurate summary of how older versions of World of Warcraft  played from a technical perspective, but it’s certainly how playing the game made myself and countless other people feel. You were on an adventure into the unknown, and there was always something new to discover. This isn’t a feeling trapped in the past, nor created purely by nostalgia either. When I played the relaunch of World of Warcraft: Classic in 2019, that feeling was completely there, and I couldn’t stop playing for weeks. Newer video games can cast the same spell on me too.

But as far as the latest expansions of World of Warcraft go? It’s not there for me.

The Biggest Damn Deal on the Planet

Instead, in World of Warcraft, Battle for Azeroth, you’re summoned by the leaders of your empire to take part in the siege of a city – because you’re not the little guy anymore, you’re the biggest damn deal on the planet.

Then, a diamond man screams “CHAMPION!!!!!!” in your ear at the top of his lungs and says that ONLY YOU can save THE WORLD! After that, you, THE CHAMPION, are sent to single-handedly unify a nation, lead armies against the opposing faction, and still do menial chores for strangers in between battling divine beings. It’s an obnoxious and ceaseless barrage of epic situations that want you to feel like the coolest person ever.


Yet, no matter how many people are screaming at me that I’m on an epic quest, I certainly don’t feel like I am. Instead, I feel like I’m working. There’s no thrill to anything, no stakes, certainly no challenge.

When a pirate captains threaten to kill me, I don’t care. Why should I? I’ve killed planet destroying gods, several times over. What can an idiot with a boat and a gang of thugs possibly do to me? Bore me to death? Oh no, I’ve been captured and enslaved by a local band of extremists! This will be a tough situation–no wait, I’ll just pull this undead frost dragon out of my pocket and obliterate my captors from existence.

So what? The villain I’m going against destroyed a city maybe? Seen that happen quite a few times already. Perhaps they killed one of the many loud characters that I’ve no reason to be invested in? (Unless I’ve read the novel that tells all about the important events that aren’t explained in the game!)  Good for them, I’ve probably killed those characters a few times myself truth be told, or wanted to.

Be a Little Man Exploring a Big World

This is how World of Warcraft has felt to me for the better part of a decade now. And while Classic certainly isn’t as romantic as my little summary makes it out to be, it still to this day does something right: It lets me be a little man exploring a big world.

And that’s where my lack of enthusiasm comes from. I’m tired of being THE Hero. I’m tired of everything being a big epic moment, orchestra and all. I’m tired of everything I encounter being trivialized by how amazing I am. The most dangerous people on the planet are myself, and my companions. Nothing stands a chance, and when it acts like it does, I’ve already heard it all before.

I don’t care about any of it, and I certainly don’t care about going to the Shadowlands. Why should I? Being in the afterlife won’t change the fact that I, THE CHAMPION!!!, will crush anything that gets in my way. I can only save the world so many times before it becomes an uninteresting chore.

Instead, give me an expansion where I’ve retired. Where age, trauma, and the exhaustion of me saving the world so many times have caught up, and I am no longer the superhero everyone has made me out to be. The world isn’t ending, my intervention is not needed to make everything right, and no leader of any faction is screaming in my ear about how cool I am and how much they need me.

And then, maybe something happens locally that pulls me out of that retirement. Maybe a widow I’ve developed a friendship with asks me to look into the death of her husband, who was killed by a band of thugs. Even though I’m old and weaker than I used to be, I get involved in taking them on. And they can kick my ass a little bit – nearly kill me even. Then I would have motive to regain my strength and skill, and take on a group that has personally wronged me.

World of Warcraft Shadowlands

It doesn’t have to be just like that. There’s so many different things we can explore about Azeroth, endless people we could meet, and so many things that could change within it due to all its been through, and the advancement – or degradation – of its many diverse societies.

But maybe, just maybe, we can take a break from all the epic conflicts, tone down the blaring orchestras, and go back to a more humble journey?

Sometimes, I don’t want to go to the loud and flashy amusement park. I just want to quietly hike a mountain.

61 responses to “World of Warcraft: Shadowlands is already dead to me”

  1. I don’t really get what your saying. Even in classic wow you take down old gods, powerful elementals, masters of the dead.

    1. Yes, but not single-handedly, not because you are the only one who can do it, and definitely not as the first thing you do. The old gods, powerful elementals, masters of the dead? Those you face after having battled through their minions and various other lesser issues, and seen what effects they’ve had on the world and its storylines.

      1. You don’t take down old gods single handedly, nor as the first thing you do either. What you’re saying doesn’t jive with how the game story unfolds at all… You still do all sorts of menial chores in the new expansions with a gradual build up to exposing the big bad of each zone, and then take them down to reveal either a dungeon you need peoples cooperation with to close the story line, or a raid which serves the same purpose. The prophet Zuul would be an example of that. This idea you start the expansion and immediately kill an old God alone (which is essentially the counter argument you’re putting forth to the OP) is total nonsense.

        Now if you want to argue the game has completely lost it’s sense of immersion with an increasingly ridiculous conflict scale, and gameplay changes that continually remind you that you’re in a theme park MMO you’re totally right. The things that made WoW unique are pretty much all gone and only remain as tiny tatters in vanilla, where every few years we pay for a full price expansion that has virtually none of the content of the original game, which retailed for cheaper.

  2. Stopcryingaboutavideogame Avatar

    Mate its a game, its a business. if you dont like it dont play it. If you feel the need to write an article detailing you crying about the “good ol days” then you reallu need a reality check. Get a new job mate. this article is pretty bad and a poor excuse for journalism.

    1. This comment is pure moron fuel.

      The idea that if you don’t like something, you shouldn’t criticize or talk about it and just move on is moronic for a plethora of obvious reasons. By your own standard, you’re a bigger idiot than this guy is. At least this guy is making money writing about complaining about WoW — you’re just some idiot using his free time to complain about people criticizing a video game.

  3. This article is simply another person screaming “Classic good (it isn’t, it’s hot garbage), Retail bad (it kind of is.) Nothing new or novel here.

  4. Just play the witcher, man 🙂

  5. dude, it’s super duper simple…go play classic…people like you are exactly why it was redone. so you can go back to your glory days.

    As far as Sylvannas goes, how do you think I feel? I completely support Sylvannas…I dont want to chase her down and fight her. I want to join her and squash the shit stain on azeroth that is the horde. Then go tear down the alliance from their gold and ivory tower of assholery. I want nearly every god damn person dead because they are pretty much all worthless peons.

    At least though, despite the eventual stupid conclusion…I can at least enjoy and praise the environment and amazing new world and sub story they are making to lead up to it…I’m not so damn jaded that I cant at least sit back and enjoy the forest for the trees, even if it is temporary. seriously it looks amazing.

    I’m also not saying any of your ideas aren’t good or cool, cuz they are…its just clearly not the time right? hell we cant even get player housing. Maybe after this something like you say makes more sense to happen….or maybe if they do a wow 2.

    I just dont see the point of a huge shitting on the entire thing and more than likely ruining some peoples impressionable bubble and make them decide not to play, when they would actually really like it. At least give some props where it’s due.

  6. This gives the feel of a small warrior that thinks because he fights for the king that it makes him the right hand man. Grunts are expendable just like you are hero.

    1. This article doesn’t make much sense to me. What you described, what you like and what you don’t like, both are wow. No one is forcing you to do anything. If you really wanted, this game has so many areas and so many quests you can go all over the place doing that with new characters of appropriate level. Heirlooms don’t even make it easy any longer, you just lvl up faster, so don’t use them.
      I play the game to have fun. I have fun doing challenging things. I like pushing mythics. I have fun helping people, real people, not NPCs. When someone tries to do something and fail, I try to help them out. These people don’t call me hero, they just say thanks. And maybe not everyone on the server will know me. But the people that know me, know they can count on me to help them beat more challenging content, or run some old raid for transmogs, which to be honest I could care less about, but I do it to help them out. That is the real life version of what you described, all inside wow, but actually helping people, instead of NPCs.

      Now even in Vanilla WoW, as many people have mentioned, stakes got crazy. They always were. I mean the horde, well great part of it, comes from another dimension. The only difference is that it felt more challenging because it was all new. Now you know everything by memory so you can do it automatically and blame the game. But if you really want to do what you said about the old age you should try the RPG servers, they do all that stuff there.

      You say now is a grind? it was always a grind. Matter of fact why many people don’t want to go back to classic. Because everything is a grind. Maybe you like grinding, and that’s ok. But you should realize that your compulsion to do everything super fast so you don’t enjoy it. It is your compulsion. Not the games.
      I never do anything in WOW that I don’t like or that I must absolutely do. Or just stuff to kill time. But it is me, killing my time. I hate quests to be honest, if I want to read, I sit and read a book, which btw I do. I don’t see the point in doing what you described. Those are not real people. But even then each new expansion you don’t start as the super supper everything. They trust you, it is true, but how could not it be after 15 years of knowing them and killing stuff for them and looking for balloons for their children. Do you really want them to act like you mean nothing?
      But the Pandaria, the Zandalary, etc, were not so keen about you at first, right? To the point I have thought to myself, yet again in this game I have to proof myself.
      But nothing is so easy as you make it sound. To be able to kill the bosses and mythics. Otherwise go ask in LFR if they think is easy, or run one of those +26 something, some people are running. Or I don’t know what about pvp?
      I think Shadowlands looks pretty. I don’t care about Sylvanas or any of those make believe beings. But I am curious to know what she is up to, and mostly I want to level up and help other people enjoy the game and be the veteran wow player I am, not looking to retire yet, helping anyone I find in my path. And that is how I play the game. Which btw kinda fits with what you said you want. Get to know and help new people, and little by little gain their appreciation. And that is all there, you just have to make it happen.

  7. Wow, I have been feeling like there’s something wrong with me for not being hyped up for Shadowlands. You have hit the nail totally on the head with your article, and it’s given me serious nostalgia for the “old days”.
    Plus it’s reassured me that it’s ok to be less-than-excited for Shadowlands.

  8. Who is Roman Reigns? This is a poor reference given the plethora of Easter eggs that links to very well known pop culture. You should stick to retro console game reviews.

    I don’t believe that you’ve even played Warcraft for a significant amount of time based on the comments made in this article.

    Sure… you’ve taken apart god-like beings that threaten the world/universe, but that took 30 “Champions” (20 if you’re out for an actual challenge) and it’s acknowledged in the story dialogue. You even get sent into situations alone during BFA, to then get smashed and told to go back with help.

    Understandably there are a lot of people who are sick of the whole Slyvannas storyline, but again, hone in on the positives… We get to find out why/how she so easily dispatched the Lich King. Will Bolvar be reunited with Talia? (Oh snap, did I just highlight a non-plot side story that fans may be invested in?)

    For anyone else unfortunate enough to stumble on this article, you should be telling them the benefits of the game, and the new expansion. You’ve no mention of the redesigned levelling experience to entice new players… Instead you throw your toys out of you pram because you’re “too powerful” and want to retire.

    I’m sure there are golf/fishing/whittling sims out there for you to live out this retirement fantasy. But for the wow players who can’t handle wow anymore there’s Warcraft Classic.

    Since this is a game that you’ve apparently played, it looks like you’re already quite familiar with your retirement home. Enjoy, bud.

  9. Adrian Borysionek Avatar
    Adrian Borysionek

    TLDR: you don’t feel the thrill cause you’re older and grumpier, you got used to the game which is more than 15 year old now, and you most probably get used to a lot of similar content in other games (and wow had literally no competition back in the day as the only MMO’s back then was Ultima Online and Tibia which both are sandbox games with less pressure on lore content story telling).

    The only thing I’m tired of in retail WoW is all the classic players, constantly whining about the current content. The game is evolving mate, get over it. Walk out from the mental basement you live in.

    We get it, life is not how it used to be 15 years ago so you have to tell everyone about your nostalgic, broken little heart. You look like a terminal patient waiting in the hospital for death to take them away, trying to remember his first love or something equally pathethic.

    While I can agree that the current expansion has it’s problems (which I can summarise as RNG and Activision Blizzard greed), it delivered both mysteries to be solved, lore plot twists on the scale never seen before, war, love, hatred, you name it.

    And yes, an annoying diamond dwarf calls you the champion, but before you could even SEE N’Zoth you had to grind your way through solving lesser problems to bolster your strength. Like the f..cking turtles that needed help to get to the water. If that’s an epic quest you need lobotomy, and fast.

    1. Older and Grumpier??? GTFO outta you self righteous little twit. The game has lost of edge and I can echo the sentiments of the OP. It has NOTHING to do with being older. It has everything to do with people running blizzard who sold out and have no real talent for creating meaningful immersion anymore.

    2. 100% untrue. World of Warcraft is an Everquest CLONE. In fact, if you knew D&D well enough, you’d also know that not ONE THING in Warcraft is original. Not even Shadowlands. Sorry, but you are very well mistaken on a few points. Everquest II was out BEFORE World of Warcraft. In case you didn’t know; most of the World of Warcraft Devs came from the top Everquest guild at the time. As for the rest of your flaccid argument, you seemingly can’t separate opinion from fact, which merely serves to further highlight how recalcitrant you are.

  10. This isn’t the first time we’ve taken on tHE big bad…. we’ve done it literally every single expansion… what you’vce ranted about enjoying is the levelling process, which is your choice. But having somethiong so bland as end game content would be really really terrible.

  11. Why don’t you play wow classic.. or start a level 1 character every few weeks?

  12. Great article! Makes a parallell to shitty isekai manga where the MC practically instantly becomes the most powerful being in the universe while never REALLY being challenged at all

  13. You can do that chill and humbled playing as long as you want… You don’t need to be the CHAMPION, the hero as you talk about just don’t do it no one is making you be one 😄. This is why I love World of Warcraft you can do whatever you want no need to go and do this thing particularly.

  14. You sound desperate for classic. Go back and live your glory days of helping farmers.

  15. Cloudseeker @ Nordrassil Avatar
    Cloudseeker @ Nordrassil

    Great perspective & I agree with you. Vanilla WOW was an Adventure, roaming about. I liked exploring and then finding the quests. Now the game is like a chore, sure there’s a little aspect of the exploring…but it seems forced. Either way I still go off script & ignore quest lines just to roam & explore. Just wish the World was more populated with mobs. There’s A LOT of barren land out there. I’m going to continue with Shadow Lands, it looks graphically pleasing.

    1. If you play the game with Addons it actually feels a lot like what you describe. And you can still do that, very rarely I read the quests and stuff. When I can not absolutely guess what I need, but the discovery and everything is still there, if you want it. You can take the time to read the quests and all. I still remember the quests related to a couple you helped in the outskirts of Stormwind.

      You just got so used to it that it seems like bad. Too much of a good thing is also bad.

      I agree Shadow Lands looks nice, it will be nice to explore. I always went off script, it is an open world, now more than ever, with all the auto adjustment of the lvl of the mobs they did. In the past it used to be more linear, you couldn’t go to certain areas until you were certain lvl. You still hve that, but you can go to many more areas and have mobs your lvl, and that also goes the other way, areas that were super easy are not so easy because mobs scaled up. Regarding the amount of mobs, there are areas that are so full of stuff i just hate being there. So I guess they have a little of both things.

      I think the author probably needs to either stop playing wow, or maybe jump to another game, completely new, so he can feel lost again. I see every day new WoW players, and most of them have that sense of adventure and everything. But it has to be a concioust decesion as well. If you jump in wanting to be be in the last lvl already and having everything maxed out. You won’t enjoy the journey. This time I went back to wow, I took 1 or 2 months to get to lvl 120. I was back in the horde after many years. I did a lot of quests and stuff, for old times sake. I always run as tank, I could have grinded the 120 in the Dungeon Finder super fast, but that is not what I wanted. I did a lot of quest I had done already, and did new ones and read them, taking my time. And I learned more about wow. And it was nice. And take into consideration, what I like at the moment most about wow are the Mythic+, but I didn’t rush to it. I took the time to enjoy the journey, and if I was tired of grinding, I would log off.

      More than what WOW has to offer, is how you take it.

  16. Oh yeah, I’ve been saying for some time that Warcraft needs a “soft reset” with a punt forward in time, something like what they did between WC 2 and 3.

    What are the odds, though? Big box video game companies today are all about chasing the rush of dopamine that comes from an EPIC SUCCESS after pushing a few buttons. And Blizzard these days is just that, another big box video game company.

  17. Phillip Anderson Avatar
    Phillip Anderson

    Nailed it!

  18. Steven R. Tindall Avatar
    Steven R. Tindall

    I’ll see you on the classic server called Bloodsail Buccaneers. No furries,no soloing gods nothing but pure original Warcraft.

  19. You and your companions are the most dangerous things on the planet??? Mythic Nzoth says otherwise…

  20. Play Final Fantasy XIV.
    5.3 just released with a Free Trial that goes up to lvl 60 and even includes the first expansion.
    Super fun and you have nothing to lose to try it 🙂

  21. I don’t usually leave comments or reviews, but i loved your article! I am a 55 yr old woman who is a newbie to WoW Bfa and I find your version of WoW a lot more interesting than the grandiose version of the current game. Its made me consider leaving Bfa and finding a Classic version to start my adventure all over again.

    1. You can always check out classic which you can access through battlenet. You might like it as it is a grind and you rely on making connections with others to run dungeons, raids and even elite quests.

      1. Join a Role Play server and make that your RP. Just remember it’s not everyone else’s job to adjust their game experience solely to match your expectations.

  22. Long time player Avatar
    Long time player

    I wish I could disagree with you but I cannot. And I agree just give me a open world to explore don’t make it the old everything’s life-or-death right off the bat and yeah I’m tired of saving the world. Saving the great leaders I agree it’s a bored tiring tale. And I hate the Sylvannas storyline, just let her be war chief who hates everybody and hates the alliance the most….

  23. One of the best articles I’ve seen on this in a while! I’d definitely play as a retiree lols. That said, will still head in to Shadowlands as the world’s Last Champion for the millionth time ^_^.

  24. This hasn’t been the case since lvl 18 in vanilla wow. Once you clean out deadmines and kill their leader you are a hero of stormwind. If you raided in vanilla you pushed back an elemental Lord and an old God. You killed not one but two black dragons that were manipulating the alliance.

    You were a damn hero. We were never no one. We just happened to be the hero that will stop to help the kid get their cat out of the tree before we go kill an old God.

  25. Jay jay O'Connor Avatar
    Jay jay O’Connor

    I don’t think anybody cares at all wot you like and don’t like….this was a complete waste of my time ..Reading your Boo who I don’t like crap.

  26. It sounds like live WoW isn’t for you and should stick with classic. Unless there’s a time skip after shadowlands you’re not going to get what you’re searching for in this particular game

  27. Ahh, I have such mixed feelings because I can relate to the feeling you’re talking about and I really love that “coming out of retirement” idea, but at the same time the whole reason the PC is THE Champion is precisely because they’ve been through vanilla+7 expacs and building their reputation and skills and power all along, so it’s kind of only natural they’d be recognized as not quite the right hand man of the faction leaders, but certainly a respected general. And that is somewhat how it’s played – you’re sent on tedious errands but they’re somewhat connected to the lore (well, when they come from big name NPCs anyway) as a means of forwarding the lore and the story, but.


    It feels weird, right? Like, if you were some mercenary, even an OP one, this would make sense. But you’re the respected general, the faction Champion and AZEROTH’S Champion, but you’re playing errand runner like a grunt at times, taking orders from people that MUST be beneath your rank at this point (like, you felled a freaking Titan, ffs! Who’s this Orgrimmar asshole barking orders at me about how to capture a Kul Tiran objective?)

    So I get it. But I’m kinda hoping that this expansion will end up being different precisely because you’ll have to re-prove yourself to all these new factions and otherworlders, and there’s some justification for them being at our level in terms of power and skill what with being dead and from all kinds of different realms and stuff. And while yeah, we’re taking on what seems to be the equivalent of a titan or something again, that only seems natural given where we’ve come from.

    IDK. Maybe I’m getting my hopes up only to be disappointed. But I will say that, after all this, I think it would be A-MAZING if we had a time jump and we all end up grizzled old veterans pulled out of retirement. (It would have been a great way to introduce the level squish, incidentally, but c’est la vie.)

  28. Times change.

  29. Sounds like you’re chasing nostalgia and aren’t really into what WoW has to offer. Nothing wrong with that. Sounds like you want to play a different game. In your scenario, after you save the world once, the game is over. There’s no more to do. Time to play DnD or The Witcher.

  30. Well, boo freaking hoo. Play classic and stfu. Sniveling brat. Typical new age journalism. Whine about everything and blame the wrong people for your woes.

  31. Change to a role-playing server and work on professions. I agree with you that more could be done to personalize the virtual world. They could add a level-up to dungeons that learn how you fight and get more difficult, NPCs that age and get replaced but aways pronounce your character’s name instead of ‘champion’, etc

  32. You pretty much summed up everything I felt since the launch of BfA. Good article, thanks for sharing your thoughts.

  33. I’m always baffled by the people like you who don’t want to be the hero. Why exactly are you playing games then? The vast majority of them have you as the hero. Maybe you need to stick to Harvest Moon and Stardew Valley, they sound more your speed rather than an MMORPG.

  34. Jose G. García Avatar

    Good to see a genuine opinion. I feel World Of Warcraft started off good and humble but it went off the deep end and the story doesn’t matter to anyone playing or watching potentially to play. Mogepodge boredom yes, nit to mention odious prying and hacking gone beyond Authenticator. Another disappointed gamer here too. My well wishes to those others who joined in fine roleplay and campy fun. True Horde gangstas & For the Alliance!

  35. Great article! I absolutely agree with author

  36. Great article on why WoW Classic is so popular. Please go there and quit bashing something that has yet to be released. You doing one of two things: stealing our thunder as we expect from Blizzard after nightmares such as WOD and Panda; or not giving something that could be their best work yet, a chance.


  37. Spot on! The game was fun, I still listen to all the music and think about particular spots where my guild and I would camp, fish, farm–yes all the little things that really made the game feel good. Now it is a rush to end content, even the reboot of classic is a rush to end content. My guild never did a dungeon until the end of Burning Crusade and we didn’t care. There was plenty of game play to occupy one’s time.

    The story line has been trampled to appeal to an immature audience along with game play. Choices use to matter, only hunters had pets, only warlocks summoned, only shamman had totems. Only certain classes were available to certain races. The rules were important to maintain a consistent storyline. It is easier to keep selling “new content” by making nothing matter, and change storyline to suit which appeals to an immature player base. Even the GMs became immature. I have read many of the stories of how players now conduct themselves outside of Goldshire.

    When many like myself left, I think we stayed on the sidelines waiting to find something to bring us back. I even listened to many of the youtubers that show current gameplay and while I enjoy some of their content, many go out of their way to appeal to only the immature with their dissmisive and horrid attitudes. Is it any surprise to then hear about misconduct and abuse within such “mythic” guilds as Method. The game is old and it has changed for a new audience. That is a bitter pill for an older audience, who’s loyalty has been easily dismissed. The game is not the same and it takes time to find other games to fill the void. I have found a few games with smaller and newer companies not so entrenched in toxic drama. So goodbye Azeroth and mind how you go.

  38. Why would someone want to play a game where you start from nothing, become a hero, and then out of nowhere you’re forgotten? I get if you play a game, and in the tutorial, you’re some bad ass and end up losing everything just to get it back. But why would you reward players with years of playing a game under their belt with “and now you live alone and can’t fight bandits even though you beat up god”? Its not good story telling, Its just another cliché

  39. Brilliant! This puts into words exactly what I feel. Wonder and discovery are lost. Everything is spoon fed to us now. There is no real danger or challenge. Big arrows and maps tell us where we must go. I miss being the unknown factor, unsure of the outcome should I interject myself into a local skif – come and go as I please, level up and maybe come back later as a higher level, certain to even the score after previously having my a$$ handed to me. Tired of the same tired routine that is chasing down a big baddy only I can defeat. Me, my son, daughter and the rest of our guild mates lost interest.
    Thanks again. Wonderful write up!

  40. This reads like every generic nostalgia post I see on reddit swooning over the good old days.

    The thing is: the game isn’t for you anymore. The game has been evolving for over 15 years and so have you. It will never be what it once was. You can moan all you want about how it felt to be stepping into the world (of warcraft) for the first time and how you truly felt like an adventurer and now you are just the bees knees of everything and everybody on Azeroth wants your seed and all that.

    The fact of the matter is that if you can’t accept that, and want that feeling of adventure to be replicated in modern WoW and can’t enjoy the game for what it is now, then its best to move on. And that isn’t a bad thing imo. It’s just the way of it.

  41. I’d like to go to Arthas, pat him on the head and tell the little freak that he’s cute and then squash him casually if I feel like it.

  42. Louis Pretorius Avatar

    What you’re describing sounds a lot like Wow questing. In Classic, you still had your raids and dungeons facing the burning legion, old gods etc. etc. I might understand you wrong, but I also believe someone like Sylvannas shouldn’t even still be alive in the current expansion. I mean she’s just a high elven ranger resurrected by Arthus given so many unnecessary powers to make a story. The best thing for you would be to either start a new character in Classic and leveling again or even start a new MMORPG, cause I don’t think WoW will cater for anyone else but raiders/M+ players. Apologies for Grammer and sentence structures, not English Home Language.

  43. After the success of WoW and WoW: Classic. Introducing… WoW: Peasant for Life!

  44. I enjoyed this article. I still love WoW and the time I’ve spent there, but personally, I couldn’t keep interested after Ice Crown Citadel. I come back and play for 2 months or so on most expansions. But they do start to feel the same.

    The best moments for me in the new expansions are when I do something new. An underwater zone, re-exploring ruined Azeroth, worldwide flight, reincarnation as a death knight, or a new neutral starting zone. However these are only an old dog learning a few new tricks. After 16 years we’re lucky he’s just still kicking when we need the comfort of an old friend.

    This was obviously an opinion piece. I gather that the author feels somewhat similar to myself. He isn’t wrong or right. And coming here to comment and say his opinion is wrong or bash him as a classic lover probably means he isn’t writing for you. Although causing people to rage post still gets the desired clicks. Infamy pays online!

    I found that the author makes a lot of suggestions but really doesnt say anything concrete about what the game is missing for him. It just doesn’t feel the same. And that’s a sentiment I can get behind.

    Maybe what he doesn’t realize is that he has found the success and satisfaction and friends that wow originally gave him in his personal and work lives, in other games and in online communities. And wow is never going to fill those voids for him again.

    It feels like you can earn several university credits or pay down a large chunk of your student loan in the time it takes to earn your Sandstone Drake. And earning it doesn’t improve your life beyond your 300 dollar gaming chair.

    Everyone should be so lucky to be bored of WoW. It has its perks.

    1. I think what irks people about what he is saying about WoW, is not that he is ignoring what you said. The game has been essencially, always the same, he is the one that is different. And I think is valid to be tired to death of something. But saying you are tired of it, and it is ITS fault, are two different things. And he is doing the second.
      The game is super old, and it is basically an MMORPG. It actually has changed a lot. But it always was a grind, I mean, people hate classic because it is the grindiest of them all. But here he comes he saying he used to like it, now it feels a grind.
      Now, it was always a grind, it just didn’t feel like it for him. The grind always felt like grind to me, because it is. But you like what you like. What he is saying, I don’t like, and it is your fault, you are tall. Instead of saying, I don’t like you, because I don’t like tall people. The later is what he is saying. WoW was always “tall”, but he just realized it now.

      I admit that having the dwarve all the time calling you Champion can be a bit annoying. But that was that story line. And it makes sense after what happened win Legion, we were in the middle of everything, we know the stakes. We help them solve everything. Now they have another issue and they are going to toss us aside? In Legion, we were commanders of our Class Hall, I think, right? And it made sense.

      But if you wanted to do exactly what he says he wants to do. You could do it. WoW allows it. Even Shadowlands.
      What’s more, what I described in my post above, you can do it yourself with the real people of the game. Getting to know people and helping them, you can do that even in real life. That he doesn’t do it, is his choice, is not the game’s fault. But it is what he is saying in his opinion piece, and that is why people is mad. Btw I am not mad at him, because after this is just a game haha. And as you said, he got the clicks, so even if his “opinion” doesnt have the necesary backing to make complete sense, he got the points from the clicks.

      You are right about the Sandstone Drake btw, but I was lucky and bought it from someone that liked doing that grind.

      Yes the game doesn’t feel the same, because he, we, are getting old. Since his focus was always the game, it hasn’t aged well. My focus was alwyas enjoying a challenge and having fun meeting and helping new people. And there are lots of those, so I get bored of the game every other expansion, but I always go back. Btw I have a theory that WOW is kinda like Windows, 1 good expansion, 1 bad, 1 good, 1 bad. And Yes for me BFA was bad. I don’t hate it, but I don’t like it. This is for the people saying the author is a BFA hater, I don’t think is the case. I “hate” BFA, I was good at it until I left, but I just couldn’t enjoy it, I deeply disliked Boralus, so I quit. And now I am back and Shadowlands is looking good, despite of what they are doing to the heirlooms (which is a measure that actually would probably please the author).

  45. Yo dawg who hurt you?

  46. Yeah i understand wanting to be a simpleton and the world saving shit is getting old. But from a story perspective, its the only thing that makes sense. There has to be a call to action and i believe cataclysm was one of the worst expansions because it did more of what you described, it was all about the quests and doing simple stuff. I felt like it lacked so much and i didnt have a major story to focus on.

    When legion came out it gave us purpose again, it tied in story from Illidan and wanting to stop the legion. Exploring the night hold quest line was super cool, you get to understand where they came from and follow them to lead a revolution. Shit like that is great because its full of story and characters you believe in.

    Maybe what your looking for is something that wouldn’t win the hearts of millions of players. And that’s okay, but realize Blizzard has to think about what would sit well with majority because they are a business.

  47. No one is forcing you to play it your character simply grows in power like in reality people will take notice and send you off taking on bigger and bigger tasks and now we are at a stage were our characters are so strong they have the power to take on God’s its just a sents of progression. Like others has said classic exist play that but you will get bord after a while as there not no new content and nostalga only last so long. If the game never changed then wow would never be as successful as it is today and would have died in its player base a long time ago.

  48. I have to agree with the article. I’ve come back to every single expansion, and every time I’ve left faster the previous, as sad as it is. The issue for me is that the story feels more like a single player experience than ever before. Came back to BFA after a break, went to see the story and… yeah, a total of four faction leaders staring at the back of my head, just waiting for me while I capture a sea slug.

  49. I’ve often wondered if it’s simply that the game was new to us then… so quite enjoyable and you feel in awe of everything. I started playing during BC and enjoyed several expansions fully, but now feel exactly the same way as you are describing. I did buy SL and am playing, but I have already logged out for this evening, tired of the quest grind and a bit unsure of what to think of this ‘new’ land. I remember playing all night in the past! I’ve gotten older yes, but I seem to tire of playing much easier and quicker than I ever did before. I love the Wow universe. It’s a great escape. But often times I find it a ‘chore’ and that isn’t what ‘playing’ is supposed to be. Time will tell if I’m actually ‘done’ or not. But do know that you are not alone in feeling like this.

  50. I put it all down to one thing; Blizzard used to be a company that made games, but it’s really our fault because we made them able to afford marketing gurus and accountants. There’s way too many people at Blizzard interested in metrics and trying to sell a game, rather than just make a game and hope people like it. Much of the focus on building a great game is lost when metrics tells them “use this colour” or “x% of the playerbase did that” and when Blizzard started to think, all the divine beauty was lost. The problem is the fanboy mentality many have, they simply can’t view the shallow narratives nor the blatantly copied themes or mechanics stolen from many games over the years. Even in this thread one foolish person declares World of Warcraft had no competition. It’s WAS the top MMO but not anymore. It has and always will be an Everquest clone. It had a chance to be something special, but marketing saw the game become this great beast that only the most objective fan can clearly see the game has steered far, far from it’s narratives and it’s gameplay. It’s a very consumer driven product that lacks originality and substance. It’s a very fast-food approach to what is a very shallow experience for the seasoned MMO gamer.

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