Noblegarden: As much as I like chocolate…

As much as I like chocolate, I may be giving up on Noblegarden in a hurry. Why? It's those damn eggs. More specifically, it's the divide between two schools of thought on the eggs.

School #1: Thinks that camping a single spawn point means they have called dibs on that spawn point, and anyone who manages to click the egg in that spawn point is "ninja-ing" that egg from them. Whispers people with rude tells when someone from School #2 comes along:

School #2: Thinks that all eggs are fair game for everyone (after all, no one has to spend money or time causing spawn points to occur), and that people camping the spawn points are effectively griefing the event (as while one individual person camping a single spawn point doesn't do much to harm someone else's ability to collect eggs, when every spawn point is camped, there's no way for anyone else to collect eggs; more people want to collect eggs than there are spawn points, even if you visit all four home cities for your faction). Is willing to put up with rude whispers from people in school #1.

It reminds me of one of my least favorite quests in the game — Digging for Prayer Beads.

When first implemented, this quest required you to purchase a 2g item as well as some other miscellaneous crap — at which point you had to follow a dog around town, trying to collect an item from spawn points on the ground.

While 50 other people tried to use the spawn point before you did.

Eventually, I'd had so many damn beads stolen out from under me that I was willing to steal someone else's beads. Not the way I like to play the game, but I'd lost a dozen gold or more on this stupid quest, and I was sick of it. In the long run, the quest was altered so you only needed to spend a couple silvers to activate the dog, and once activated, anyone on the quest could loot the spawn point with the actual beads in it.

You would think Blizzard would've learned something about overpopulated servers and spawn points — someone on the forums even suggested an alternative, where an egg might be active for a short period of time, and during that time anyone could collect an egg from the spawn point — but no. Instead we've got a horrible, miserable, awful way of dealing with spawns that requires you to either be willing to stand your character in a single spot for literally hours at a stretch, and then get indignant if you happen to miss the spawn while you're reading/tabbed out/looking at Slashdot on your other computer — that egg is YOURS, damn it! — or run around, desperately trying to grab eggs and looking like a jerk while you do it.

This is a stupid, stupid, stupid stupid stupid way to run an event, and I want no part of it. For full disclosure, yes, I'm in school #2. I have no issues with camping spawn points of, say, quest mobs, and people forming a line — that even worked great during the overpopulated phase when trying to complete Conversing With The Depths; people really did form a single-file line and wait their turn, cross-faction, even! But when you're talking about something where some people are going to want 500 or more freaking eggs, and the spawn points are limited, and the number of people wanting eggs far exceeds the number of available spawn points…

I don't complain about bad decisions on Blizzard's part very often (you didn't hear me talking about how frustrated I am over the change to Mana Spring Totem), but this? It's very, very bad design.

What really gets me about this is that these sorts of events are supposed to be fun. It's great when we all hang out and cooperate, when there's a good reason to stick around someplace because people just aren't finding dwarf females, and so on. But this? There's no cooperation. There's no interaction (at least no pleasant interaction). I got lucky and got a bunny within the first 20 eggs I opened, and yes, the bunny animation is adorable… but screw this noise, seriously. I do not want to play the game as if I'm a big flaming jerk who doesn't care about other people's ability to complete their quests (and no matter which school you're in, you get to be that person during Noblegarden).

Back to the Argent Tournament for me. And also, if it turns out this comment is telling the truth about what happens to the Elwynn Lamb if you've had it out for long enough… words are not going to be sufficient to contain my ire. I don't know what the hell Blizzard might be thinking, putting in a non-combat pet that repeatedly dies, but I wouldn't put it past them, and that's just — for five years I've been wanting a non-combat sheep. I don't particularly want to have to watch my dream pet die over and over again, thanks. (You'd think they might realize that, given that no other non-combat pets die, and that most of the ones which have cute animations have cute ones like falling in love. But no.)

Apr 27th, 2009
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