Why I Hate Heroic Modes

I’m going to be honest with you; I hate the heroic mode toggle in raids. It doesn’t mean that I don’t do heroic modes, nor does it mean I think current raid content shouldn’t be more difficult than current normal modes. It simply means that I don’t enjoy doing the same fight with another twist or two plus everything hitting harder and having more health.

Beru linked to Borsk’s post about the end of his guild’s raiding. A sad thing, to be sure. It’s never easy to throw in the towel and it’s often something that has huge emotional repercussions for all those involved, so my sympathies go out to him. His post, however, is wonderful and he discusses a lot of different things. What really hit me is this, though, which resonated with me greatly:

I look back on TBC fondly because it was the last time when finishing the instance meant finishing the instance.

WORD. He went on to say “From Ulduar on through Firelands the heroic modes felt like a nuisance. While Rhyolith felt like a boss that needed put in his place, Heroic Rhyolith felt like “hey asshole, I’ve already killed you once, just give me my loot.”” Total agreement here.

So let’s discuss my disdain for heroic modes of any kind (for yes, it extends to dungeons as well). It dates back to the introduction of heroic dungeons back in the Burning Crusade. “Are you kidding me?” I exclaimed when I learned that I would “have” to do things like Hellfire Ramparts again at level 70. As a healer, the heroic dungeons of the day were pretty rough, at least to begin with. Heroic Black Morass? God help us all with the running around and the being oom and such. Shattered Halls? Deadly without a prot paladin to adequately AOE all the mobs so the poor healer wouldn’t draw healing aggro.

And even when I WAS geared, I couldn’t properly heal Magister’s Terrace. Without Beacon, with Holy Shock being a terrible option to use, most times, no Word of Glory or Light of Dawn or Holy Radiance… I mean, I was sitting there in mostly T5 gear and I couldn’t properly heal through the Kael encounter on NORMAL, much less heroic.

I disliked this model so much that I basically refused to do them. To this day, my paladin is still not exalted with the Sha’tar. I did what was needed of me for attunements and such, but people would laugh at others in guild if they were silly enough to say “Kurn, wanna heal a heroic??”

Wrath came around and regular dungeons were stupidly easy. I remember being on my hunter in Gundrak and trying to trap mobs like the pro that I am and tanks laughing at me.

So heroic dungeons in Wrath were tolerable, especially late in the expansion when everyone could faceroll them. To me, they felt like normals should have, shortly after launch. Their difficulty, even the “hard” ones, like Heroic Halls of Lightening and, later, Heroic Halls of Reflection, weren’t so terribly bad. (Not to say pugging them was always a walk in the park.)

And then they introduced raid hard modes with Ulduar.

I liked it, to an extent. On the one hand, they gave us more challenges and more dynamic fights to extend our playtime in there because it’s cheaper than making a brand new raid. Same trash, same maps, just different boss mechanics depending on various factors.

I was okay with this. I loved how to trigger the hard modes. XT hardmode was an excellent example. If you didn’t have the DPS to kill the heart, you’d never have to worry about switching it on accidentally. Flame Leviathan, while being able to choose a variety of difficulties, was awful because it stemmed from talking to one of two dudes and then bringing down or ignoring various towers. By contrast, how great was it to know that if you accidentally hit the big red button in Mimiron’s room, that your raid was probably about to die hideously?

I also really liked the Iron Council switch — couldn’t be simpler. Kill Steelbreaker last and that’s your hard mode. Similarly, Freya’s hardmode meant not killing her adds in the room. The switch was very simple on some fights and more obscure or complicated on others. And the levels of difficulty were really interesting from a tuning perspective.

Then Trial of the Crusader/Grand Crusader arrived with its four separate lockouts and a simple menu button to toggle it on or off. Simple, yes. Boring? Absolutely. It doesn’t help that the raid itself was mind-numbing. It taught me to appreciate trash, that’s for sure.

Again, I can’t fault them for the change because I am positive people gave a lot of feedback about how someone screwed up the triggering of heroic mode (or not) and such in Ulduar. Shoot, I probably did. When the weekly raids were introduced and people were exposed to the fights for the first time, I was like “Oh nooooooooo,” when I pugged into a Flame Leviathan where someone had talked to the wrong NPC and OH HEY, we’re doing FOUR TOWER Flame Leviathan!

So while it was easy to make the switches, it was also really easy to screw it up.

Then they realized that the four lockouts was just insane, thankfully, so they brought it back to one lockout per raid size (and now, in Cata, it’s just one lockout, period) with the heroic toggle in the menu.

And through it all, I’m still wondering why the hell we’re “forced” to go through each instance twice.

Now this doesn’t mean I don’t do heroic modes. I went 4/5 25m in TOGC. I went 11/12 25m HM with two guilds in ICC. I have my 25m ICC drake and my Glory of the Icecrown Raider 25. I went 7/13 25m HM with Apotheosis in Tier 11.

Why do I do it if I hate them so much?

In part, it’s because it’s THERE. I’m a competitive person and if there’s something to DO, I’m going to want to do it, whether or not I like the idea of it.

In part, it’s because the step up in terms of gear is great and necessary for when you embark on the next tier of content. Face it, if you’re decked out in 372s instead of 359s, you’re going to have a much easier time in Firelands to collect your 378s. And when you’re decked out in 391s, you’ll have an easier time in the next tier compared to the people in 378s. Those 13 item levels may not seem like much, but that’s the difference between heroic blues and Tier 11 gear. It makes a difference on your mana pool, your healing done, damage done, your sustained efforts.

So I do them because I know that my guild will be stronger for the next tier or the next fight or whatever. Logically, I can see that heroics fill a needed step in the gear progression.

I also do it because that’s just how progression works these days and, though I dislike how it works right now, I’m in that system and I want to progress. I want the heroic kills under my belt because they’re in the game. But I promise you, I would be a thousand times happier to kill Ragnaros, as we did last week, and know that we were now ready for the next boss in a new instance. That’s what happened in Vanilla — people cleared Molten Core a few times then moved to Blackwing Lair, then moved to The Temple of Anh’Qiraj, then to Naxxramas. It was a very linear progression.

It was even mostly linear in Burning Crusade.

You started in Karazhan and started to collect gear and some Tier 4. And once you were geared enough, you could join a 25-man team and — wait.

I feel the need to express how RIDICULOUS it was to start raiding content with 10-man groups and then move to 25-man raids. It was excruciating for us to gear everyone up for Gruul and Magtheridon and, as such, I can’t stand Karazhan any more. Which is a shame. I quite liked it, at the time. For a little while, anyway.

So, right, you went to Kara and then, to keep raiding, had to go to 25-man raids, where you would do Gruul’s Lair and Magtheridon’s Lair.

Once done, you’d move into Tempest Keep and Serpentshrine Cavern, consisting of a total of 10 bosses in the two instances. And once Kael and Vashj were dead, they were dead! None of this heroic crap.

Then on to Mount Hyjal and Black Temple and, eventually, Sunwell.

Borsk is right — finishing a raid instance back then meant something. Now it just means that the grind starts all over again, only things hit harder and have more health.

This is not remotely interesting to me.

The reasons for heroic modes are understandable, however. You have all this time and these resources being poured into raiding content and, if the raids are too hard (BWL? AQ40? Naxx?), only a small portion of the game’s population will ever see the raids. This is a huge concern of Blizzard’s and I can understand that. At the same time, they understand that there is a difference between a raid group that raids 30 hours a week and one that raids 9 hours a week and one that raids 4 hours a week. How to make everyone happy and make sure the ones who raid more seriously don’t get bored? Make optional hard modes for those who are organized and skilled enough to do those difficulty levels!

I can understand it.

I still don’t like it.

To me, it’s not remotely engaging gameplay. Triggering them? A flick of a switch instead of a game mechanic. Watching my tanks get absolutely crushed by the bosses who now hit 2701 times harder while having 300% more health? Not looking forward to it. Heroics have, to me, always felt “tacked on”. I imagine that the designers had a discussion like this about Heroic Sindragosa design:

“Okay, so Ice Bombs should just instantly kill anyone they hit on heroic? We’re agreed on that?”

“Yeah, yeah, anyone who can’t dodge those things deserves to die. What’s next?”

“Hm, good question. Probably should do something with Unchained Magic, right? Maybe it spreads to others if you’re in range of them?”

“Tempting, but… I don’t know. It doesn’t feel right. Sindragosa should be brutal. Think more brutal.”

“DUDE. I’ve got it. Are you ready to have your mind blown?”

“Hah, let’s hear it.”

“Unchained Magic BLOWS OTHER PEOPLE UP on heroic mode!!!”

“Oh MAN, that’s the best idea EVER!”

“Wait, wait. She should also PARRY THRASH.”

“YES! ON BOTH DIFFICULTIES!”

“YES!”

Jackasses. That’s not fun. I loved the Heroic Putricide encounter but not because it was heroic — I liked the mechanics of the plague. THAT was fun and engaging. Unchained Magic and parries? Brutal mechanics. I’m not asking for things to be particularly easy or unforgiving. I’m asking for heroic modes to be less about “boss and everything about the encounter hits harder and has more health” and more about things like the Unbound Plague.

It seems to me that it’s just so rare for there to be fun and engaging mechanics in heroic content. It’s usually just brutally harsh stuff.

Maloriak was engaging because of the new phase. Chimaeron was not. It was just more tank damage. Magmaw wasn’t, it was just more fire and more adds. Atramedes wasn’t, it was, hey, more annoying adds and less gongs. Omnotron was Nefarian fiddling with things and in the 30ish pulls we did on it, it didn’t feel engaging. It felt annoying. Nefarian seemed like it would be more engaging, but I can’t attest to that personally.

In Bastion, Halfus was downright easy on normal so heroic actually felt like you’d accomplished something. The dragons were interesting because of the addition of the twilight realm. THAT was a good heroic mode. Conclave was annoying on normal and on heroic, IMHO, so out of the 7 T11 heroic modes I completed (and attempted an 8th), I liked precisely two of the heroic modes: Halfus, because it wasn’t boring any longer, and Valiona & Theralion, because it was a new mechanic that wasn’t *just* more adds.

And my streak continues. I have a bad habit, since heroic modes have been introduced, of not killing the end-bosses on heroic. I went 4/5 in TOGC, 11/12 in ICC, then 7/13. And now I am 7/7 normal 25-man mode in Firelands and we’re looking at heroic Shannox and all I really want to do is say “screw you, I defeated Rag, give me a new instance.”

Heroics are easy for the designers. Just a few variables to change, a couple of new animations and a couple of new spells and that’s it. Are they challenging for us raiders? Sure. Do they accomplish Blizzard’s desire to have lots of people see their raid content? Yup. Do heroics give us an option to toggle the harder difficulties, allowing more people to see the normal modes without the more serious raiders going crazy farming the same crap for a year? Yes.

I still hate them and I do them because that’s what’s expected of me and because, by golly, I CAN do them. I try to view them as new fights and I get psyched to get them down, but it’s not the same as clearing an older instance. The pure elation I felt when we got Lady Vashj down for the first time or when Archimonde died, none of the experiences these days are comparable to that. My reaction, instead of “YAY, WE DID IT!!!” is usually “Oh thank God, it’s over,” and then I slump in my chair in relief.

So a big thank you to Borsk for helping me to pinpoint what I don’t like about heroic modes and why, even all these years later, the Burning Crusade raid content still leaves me all warm and fuzzy.

[I]t was the last time when finishing the instance meant finishing the instance.

26 comments

  1. Darista says:

    Totally agree. Glad I’m not the only one that gets warm fuzzies when I think of TBC content! I think, aside from the raids themselves, you just felt so much more involved by having to do the attunement quest chains before entering various raids and just how much time and effort went into doing them. You really felt like you were a PART of something. Now, with the quests and such before various raids, it’s:

    a) Not even required. You do them if you want that shiny new cloak or necklace.

    b) You can do them completely by yourself. TBC required dungeon runs, killing elite things, etc.

    Gosh, I miss TBC. :(

  2. Clockwork says:

    Just out of curiosity, would it reduce your dislike if Heroic was an option from the start? That is instead of having to clear Firelands first your “first kill” could be the heroic mode if you so chose?

  3. Ceraphus says:

    I also have felt heroics were a tack on, but found the way to trigger them in Ulduar was engaging. My guild has made the decision to go about raiding more casually, and has decided that the mechanics of heroics are not compelling enough to push ourselves to compete with the most progressed. We are perfectly fine excepting normal modes as beating the raids.

    If they brought back Ulduar type hard modes, we may begin to explore doing them again.

  4. Kurn says:

    Dar – BC content — the raids, that is — was amazing. IMHO. And I completely agree, with regards to the attunements. It really gave you a sense of why you were doing what you were doing. It’s all about the gear now and I think the heroic format plays into that heavily.

    I miss BC too! Just not the heroic dungeons. :P

    Clockwork – That’s an excellent question, but I don’t think so. Given the way it works now, you need the heroic gear from the previous tier to get through the normal modes quicker.

    I don’t know what would get me to like heroics and accept them as another level of content. I think that, as things stand, what would make them more acceptable to me is the Ulduar trigger method, but that still wouldn’t make them all that appealing to me in general.

    Ceraphus – Agreed, re: Ulduar, as I mentioned in my post and just above. My guild and I like to be challenged and like to rise to a challenge, so we’re dedicated to doing the heroic modes, soul-sucking though it may be… ;) I commend your decision to opt out of heroic modes. I’m just unhappy with the system and would like it to change. Sadly, I’m chasing the carrot on the stick that comes with raiding a bit more seriously and I don’t foresee myself NOT doing heroics as long as they’re in the game. Blech.

  5. Arazu says:

    “In Bastion, Halfus was downright easy on normal so heroic actually felt like you’d accomplished something.”

    I felt the same way about Firelands. We killed several FL bosses on the very first pull on the very first night without knowing most of the fight at all. If that had been “it” that would’ve been tremendously disappointing. The heroic modes however, are quite well done and Heroic Rag is proving to be a serious, serious fight.

    Yet many players find normal mode FL to be a difficult challenge. Not all players can deal with what my raid can deal with. So having the difficulty split helps there be content for both. In BC guilds just stalled and waited for nerfs, 5/6 SSC 3/4 TK until ZA came out, oh ok now we’re 4/9 BT 4/5 MH until more nerfs, they miss out on a fair bit of content that way.

    Heroic Shannox however is easier than normal Rag, it’s not much of a speed bump.

  6. Clockwork says:

    Kurn – In my hypothetical world I was also sort of assuming that there would be a lower barrier of entry into heroics; that is say the blues you hit at 85 are sufficient to do them with. So once you do the first tier of heroics you’re set. Or something like that, invalidate the normal modes if you don’t need them.

    Also I did think an Ulduar like system would be more interesting, especially since it lets you decide on a per-boss basis.

  7. RDruid says:

    I know I’m old…but it really seems back before heroics/achievements a guild could beat one T-instance then have a bit of time before the next T-instance would begin (even it if the break in action was created by waiting until you could get everyone attuned). This time between instances was boring but valuable even if it created a lull in raiding. Once a guild finished an instance they worked on gearing up standby/lower geared members (giving them a larger pool for the next instance push); it gave regulars a chance to regroup mentally; and generally gave a guild more time to recruit if holes on the roster did develop.

    That all seemed to change with heroics…

    Heroics have really “compressed” the game, as you rush from clearing on regular mode immediately to clearing on heroic…less downtime more pressure on raiding rosters. They add another hurdle to potentially trip a guild up; they’ve become a defacto measuring stick for players looking to transfer; and players that don’t get raiding time generally jump much sooner, because of a fear they’ll be left behind once heroics start.

    A raiding guild lives or dies on its roster of talent. Today largely because of heroics there is less time to build, develop, and maintain an adequate raiding roster. Thus raiding rosters are generally “leaner” and seem more vulnerable to any sudden shifts in attendance or class collapse.

    And of course there is less time to “enjoy the accomplishment” as you have to kill each boss again…wiping all over again, and usually starting the very next week.

    I’ll be the first to admit that GM/RL in this expansion takes a much more flexible and nimble leadership type than guild management and raiding did years go. But that being said, the rewards seem much less obvious today when you know, as Borsked put it best “the raid leader gets to see the disappointed tells and sighs…” which today seem to be just as close as the next heroic encounter.

    -one old leathery druids opinion…

  8. Joe Ego says:

    I only barely raided Kara and Mag in BC for a couple months before the nerfs, so I can’t comment much on TBC raiding. Heroic dungeons, however, were serious business for a non-raider. I put my game face on for all of them, but Magisters’ Terrace always made me a little scared. To all the under geared Holy Paladins who healed that whole instance (pre-3.0, several gut wrenching times): I salute you!

    Ulduar, to me, is the best raid. Top to bottom. Boss variety, mechanics, environment, and clever hard modes.

    I understand Blizzard’s desire to serve a wide variety of end game content to a wide variety of end game players but I think there is a bit of disconnect between various raiders. After clearing everything on Normal mode, getting through just half of the Heroics feels like a let down. Also, it doesn’t feel quite right to be able to farm all Normal bosses but be progressing on the first few on Heroic.

  9. Borsk says:

    If tomorrow Blizzard switched it back to only one mode with no 10 mans (or only 10 mans…), there would be guilds breaking up, people moving on to different things, blog posts written pro and con, etc.. It’s just how things go.

    In the end we’re basically discussing what we like or don’t like in the game. Right now many guilds thoroughly enjoy heroic modes and love Blizzard’s current system.

    I’m happy for them, they are enjoying the game. But the game is what it is (i hate that cliche), and whether or not it works for a particular guild or not doesn’t mean it will for another. That doesn’t make it right or wrong, it just is.

  10. Borsk says:

    Bah, forgot to comment on Heroic mode w/o Normal mode clears.

    Assuming it was tuned correctly (i.e. doable from the onset with no ridiculous Stars-esque shenanigans), that would be the mode I would gravitate to and stick with.

  11. Arazu says:

    Having a single, heroic mode wouldn’t really be much of a solution. Heroic Rag right now requires your raid to be wearing mostly 391 gear, there is a tremendous gearing up process (even more so on 10 with the slower gearing) before you even stand a chance of getting past P2 (which isn’t even the hard part on 25).

    If killing Heroic Rag was the only way to see a dead Ragnaros, even less people would get to see it than those nerds who still brag about getting pre-nerf Muru 5 years later.

    I don’t really understand what the fascination with Ulduar hardmode triggering is. One of them was a ripoff of an AQ boss (Steelbreaker), two of them were triggered by doing nothing special (Thorim/Hodir), one of them was triggered by pushing a button, literally no different than how heroics are triggered now (Mimiron). XT had an interesting trigger but it made the first part of the fight completely pointless with the full heal, that leaves Vezax, a fight with an interesting hardmode but was generally not liked very much, and the Sartharion-style hardmodes (Freya/FL/Yogg), which are also toggled similar to heroics now, and did exactly the same things people complain about (bigger numbers). I enjoyed Ulduar, it was a good tier, but it’s no T11.

  12. To be perfectly honest, raiding in BC was terrible. Karazahn killed more raiding guilds than any instance before or since. Guild poaching was rampant, and stopping progression for a week to get the new recruit attuned to BT was idiotic.

    I love the dichotomy of heroic vs easy mode raids. I think it’s a great thing. It makes raiding accessable to the masses, yet enables blizzard to create some of the most brutally tuned encounters in the game. Yogg+0, Heroic Lich King, and Heroic Rag are leagues beyond any encounter in vanilla or BC raiding.

    However, I will say that the current design model could use some tweaking with regards to how much of a gap there is in terms of difficulty between some encounters. Ulduar was good, Firefighter and Three Trees were unforgiving encounters than did a decent job preparing you for the pain of Alone in the Dark. However, H Anub was leagues beyond anything else in ToGC, H LK was much tougher than any of the 11 other encounters in ICC. Heroic rag makes any of the other encounters in firelands look pathetic by comparison. While I have no problem with the difficulty of those encounters, I think it would be beneficial for morale if some of the other encounters were more difficult, so you couldn’t breeze through all of the instance, only to be crushed mercilessly under the feet of the final boss. T11 was well done, at least on 25 man. The tuning on 10 man was completely broken for three months.

    As for the way heroic modes were designed. I think you’ve got it backwards. It sems apparent to me, from encounters such as Heroic Putricide, Double Dragons, Magmaw, and Chimaeron, that Heroic Modes are designed first, and normal mode encounters are then created by stripping down the heroic encounter.

  13. Técaro says:

    “To be perfectly honest, raiding in BC was terrible. Karazahn killed more raiding guilds than any instance before or since. Guild poaching was rampant, and stopping progression for a week to get the new recruit attuned to BT was idiotic.”

    Can’t emphasize this enough, having to recruit new people in TBC was the worst thing I’ve ever encountered in PvE.

    On a sidenote, Hc Nef isn’t engaging at all, it’s the sheer epitome of hc mode=bigger numbers. To a point where on our first kills, we’d lose our ele shaman if there was no NR down because of MC, because he’d just get oneshot by crackle.

    Firelands heroic modes seem fairly well done overall. Shannox Hc may be easy, but it’s more engaging than normal mode. Bale is much more engaging on Hc, so are Rag and Alys. Beth is a decent heroic mode, but the last phase just falls under the “biiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiig damage” category, which is alright for a burn phase I guess but doesn’t tickly my fancy. They seriously whiffed on Domo and Ryo heroic though.

  14. Mabs says:

    The “problem” with the current raiding system is that it is designed to favor two types of guilds – 1) the fairly “casual” guild that is just trying to get through all of normal Firelands (or whatever the current tier is) before the next tier drops. This guild is probably not seeking to do hard mode content and if it does won’t make a huge concerted effort to get through it; and 2) the uber hard mode raiders. These guilds are blowing through the normal mode in 1-2 weeks after release and are then focusing all of their time on the heroic mode. For them the normal mode is essentially just an attunement. In this tier, these guilds then work their way through the first 6 bosses and then bang their head on heroic rags for the next few months. Blizz has apparently decided that the “leet” cut off point for even these guilds will be those who do kill the last boss and those who do not. Tbh, spending a two or three months (at least) on heroic rags seems pretty un-fun. People ideolize TBC, but that’s exactly what Sunwell was pre-nerf. Each boss could easily take a month to kill, even at 16+ hours per week. Twelve plus hours of Brutallus per week was just that – brutal. The attunement system also created a caste system of sorts. You couldn’t even try to join a more advanced guild b/c you couldn’t participate in their raids.

    The guilds that are somewhat “screwed” by the heroic mode set up are those (like Apotheosis) that progress through normal modes (but not at a blazing pace) and then are rewarded with slowly beating their heads on each heroic boss. These guilds really bear the brunt of the repetitiveness b/c they already spent a week or two (or more) on the normal bosses. Now it’s rinse and repeat with harder content. The odds of getting to heroic rags before the next tier drops are low, as are the odds of killing him. We all accept that system but it is less satisfying to be 4/7 HM when the tier is done (or w/e the number ends up being). There’s no sense of closure there.

  15. Adgamorix says:

    I really have to agree with Mabs – and the general point here. This is why I took a break in BC – I couldn’t raid with the guild that was in my time-zone, because I couldn’t get attuned with another guild that wasn’t. My last guild took a break after going 6(7?)/13, because it was just that grind. That and the fact that you had to kill certain bosses to do the others on heroic that you wanted. Firelands at least got that part right imo.

    I really loved Ulduar though, because of the mechanics of how you started the heroic fights. It’s probably a lot of nostalgia, but I do like it. Now that we’re 1/7 HM in FL, I’m enjoying the lighter schedule. It is really frustrating though, when it’s something like “oh hey – MORE ADDS”.

    Oh, and Ulduar might have copied some designs from other raids, but after the number of bosses we’ve killed since Lucifron I think you’d be challenged to come up with a completely new boss without copying any previous mechanics.

  16. AliPally says:

    My guild could be called a casual raid guild, in that we are a long way behind a lot of raid guilds as far as progression goes, but I am very happy with our progress.
    I think we had a great T11; 12/12 normal, 1/13 heroic – so we cleared the normal content, and then beat Halfus on heroic to sort of ‘prove’ to ourselves that we could, when pushed, step up a level and do heroics.
    Did I even remotely want to do Trons heroic, or Magmaw or any of the other harder bosses? No way, absolutely not.

    Now in Firelands we are making slow but steady progress. We don’t have the heroic T11 gear that a lot of people had, and we aren’t great players anyway, so we are only 4/7 but hoping to get 5/7 shortly.
    We will probably be doing heroics before the next patch comes out, even at this slow pace it seems, but I imagine only the easiest ones; we will probably return to T11 heroics and do those instead rather than wipe endlessly on the current ‘brutal’ encounters. Am I sorry I’m not wiping to heroic encounters right now? Nope!

    Kurn, you say you don’t like heroic modes, but then you justify having to do heroic modes because “the step up in terms of gear is great and necessary for when you embark on the next tier of content”.
    I don’t really understand that. You want to rush through the content that you like the most, in order to spend all your time on the content that you like the least…

  17. Borsk says:

    People are posting about why TBC was bad for reasons other than heroic mode vs. normal mode original point.

    Yes, attunements were bad.
    Yes, dropping from 40 to 10 and back to 25 as bad.
    Yes, Sunwell was ridiculous, Blizzard has acknowledged this.

    Bringing those up as the flaws in the actual raiding setup is just obfuscating the point. The general point by Kurn and others (like me) is that the model of one mode is a more pleasing game style for some players. You can’t overlay the current encounters and tuning over top of that with no adjustments.

    For some guilds, finishing 6/7 and then killing Rag in a later tier is more palatable than 7/7, 3/7 HM or some other permutation.

  18. Arazu says:

    I know that on-paper, it seems like it would be frustrating for a guild to quickly ice 6/7 heroic and then be stuck on heroic rag for several months, but speaking as someone whose casual guild is 6/7 heroic and has been working on H-rag for almost a full month now, the fight is so good that it’s not really all that tiring at all, unless you’re some hardcore guild going at it 5 days straight every week or something.

    Tier 11 was the same (actually better). Yes the content was very, very tough (heroic nef 10 pre-nerf was ridiculous violence), but the content is very engaging and enjoyable. My guild took it at a casual enough pace that even after ending T11 13/13 we weren’t tired of it. We still go back for Sinestra every week. In BC/Wrath? In Wrath or even BC you didn’t go back because you wanted to, you went back because you needed to gear/attune your new guys, or you needed those dreaded badges. Neither of those are concerns anymore.

  19. Joe Ego says:

    I believe Borsk and Arazu are talking past each other. Personally, I’d have no trouble beating my face against Heroic Rag for a few months. He’s the pinnacle and the previous Heroic bosses are (apparently, relatively) not much of an issue. On the other hand, it’s very different when you’re beating your face against Heroic Elementium Council or ODS late in the tier while still trying to find time to also clear Normal modes each week.

    There are a significant number of guilds only partially clearing Heroic content each tier. It can wear on them heavily when it’s some mid-tier chump (a pushover in Normal) chewing up their time every week and they have to decide if they’d rather work on it for another couple hours or clear everything left on Normal for additional gear.

  20. Arazu says:

    Heroic AC 25 was usually done very last (even after Sinestra), and many guilds went for Heroic Nef before doing Heroic Tron Council. If you were tired of struggling against mid-tier bosses last tier, you could step yo game up and go try endbosses anytime you wanted. Obviously that’s not true this tier with Rag, but with the gear level required for Heroic Rag it wouldn’t work anyway.

    Advocating for a single mode just seems to be less content in general. If there were only one mode tuned like heroic is now, most guilds would end the tier at like 3/7 and miss out on half the zone. If there were only one mode tuned like normal is now, thousands of people would’ve been done with Firelands on the very first week it was open. If you don’t want to do heroics you’re free not to, normal FL was tuned for people in 359 gear just like next tier’s normal will be tuned for people in 378. You don’t need to do Heroic T11 to do Normal T12 (Normal T12 can be done in blues), and you won’t lose anything if for some reason you don’t want to do Heroic T12. Heroic T12 is pretty excellent raid content though.

  21. Paul says:

    If there were only one mode tuned like heroic is now, most guilds would end the tier at like 3/7 and miss out on half the zone.

    No, in that situation most guilds would not raid at all. Even Cata normal mode raids are too hard for most guilds. You have probably fallen into the trap of dismissing such guilds since they aren’t raiding.

    If the devs modify difficulty in the next expansion, it will be by adding an easy mode, not by catering to the very small fraction of their players who manage to get part way through heroic raid progression.

  22. Falrei says:

    I support Kurn 100% in her displeasure for hard modes. Whether they’re well done or badly done, or how easy or hard they are, I have a very strong displeasure in working my butt off to kill a boss and then, a few weeks later once all the other bosses are down, I get to toggle a button, add a few mechanics and a lot of damage and boss health, and now I get to learn how to kill him again. I ENJOYED the sense of satisfaction from killing a boss and calling it good, and I ENJOYED having some downtime between raiding tiers. In Wrath, I got burnt out very quickly because we effectively never had any downtime. We killed a tier, we go to heroic and do it again. Presuming we accomplish this, we’re still farming hard modes when the next tier comes out only a few weeks later.

    I’m not a casual, and I’m certainly not a hardcore raider any longer going two times a week to Firelands, but there’s very little sense of accomplishment when we have to learn every boss twice, kill every boss twice, and get the same pieces of gear twice…

  23. Feya says:

    To be perfectly blunt, theres multiple types of players in WoW right now. Some live for the challenge of hard modes, some do not. Obviously most of the players agreeing with Kurn do not.

    I think whats made me enjoy Hard Modes the most, is the fact that I am accomplishing something few (relatively speaking in terms of total WoW audience) have done. Its not about the loot (merely a tool to accomplish this heroic goal), or even the notoriety of being a heroic mode guild (and being successful at it). Doing heroic modes is because you don’t like being force fed content and gear.

    You do heroic modes because they are hard, and only for that reason. Most people who are successful at raiding feel the same.

    Thats why I feel some people aren’t succesful. They are only their for the loot, or don’t play games on the “next difficulty up”. Sometimes you play games just to play something. While thats fine and all… its a whole different ball park being in a heroic encounter guild!

  24. Arazu says:

    If you’re in a position where you have to “work your butt off” to kill a boss on normal mode, by the time you switch it to heroic you’ve got enough reps on it that it’s not really relearning the fight all over again.

    If you’re in a position like my guild, where you killed normal rhyo on the first attempt ever with no deaths and no clue what was even going on, yeah switching it to heroic requires a learning process. But if you’ve already done that learning process once it’s not like you have to learn again from scratch.

    I do raid casually, and my guild had a short amount of downtime last tier. We’re going to have quite a bit more this tier. If you want some downtime, take some.

  25. Hestiah says:

    I’m not a fan of hard modes. Never have been. For exactly the reason Borsk says… It’s no longer a finished instance/raid. I like challenges as much as the next gal, but damn, the redundancy is annoying.

  26. Koilie says:

    You are looking at it backwards. You say hard modes feel takced on like they just threw in a few mechanics and bumped the HP. Well remember those old instances that you referred to where only 1% of the playerbase ever got to complete them while they were current. Its the same thing they make the encounters to be grueling and to push the hardest players to their limits.

    The normal modes are the tacked on crap. They don’t just add a few mechanics and HP modifications to make heroics. They take away mechanics and nerf the health pools to make normals for the rest of the player base that will never in their lives see the content as it were intended otherwise.

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