The latest World of Warcraft expansion has received a fair amount of criticism, Blizzard has made a lot of design choices that fell flat with their audience. One thing that Blizzard is doing well in the Battle for Azeroth expansion is showing unique story differences between the Alliance and Horde factions. If you like playing the game on both factions you are able to experience a completely different story and zones. In the second raid for the BFA expansion they have carried forward this theme by having unique horde and alliance perspective encounters. This doesn’t mean that you are limited to the bosses that you are able to experience but rather you are changed to the opposing faction depending on the fight.
On Tuesday the Mythic version of the raid will be available for play which will no doubt be an event to rival the popularity of the Uldir race to world first. What I’m most looking forward to is the rematch between the guilds Method and Limit. Both were neck in neck for the World First title with Method pulling the win in the end. For the first time ever, several of the top raiding guilds were streaming their boss kill attempts gaining a huge audience on Twitch.tv. Historically guilds would not publish videos with their attempts or strategies until well after several guilds have figured out the fight for themselves. With the growing popularity of streaming games on twitch, there is a lot to gain by showing your attempts. I know that I was watching Method’s attempts, sometimes on the edge of my seat as they had those super close attempts and 1% wipes.
Limit has been pulling out the stops when it comes to preparing for this next race to World First. I’m hoping that Limit will join in with streaming their own content, which could generate a lot of fans and revenue for the players of the #1 US guild. Limit has reportedly transferred over to the Alliance faction in order to take advantage of the benefits that the faction will receive from warmode. Will they transfer back to Horde side which has been their home or will they capture the hearts of the newly adopted alliance brothers and sisters? It would be refreshing to see Limit represent the Alliance in the race and hopefully help balance the represented factions in high end raiding.
Method will be streaming their raid attempts once again will no doubt be flooded with support for their stream team. I’ve been watching many of their players maintain steady viewship since the release of Uldir back in September 2018. Prior to Method streaming their Uldir progression I would have told you “World of Warcraft raids are not that popular to watch on stream” but here I am eating my hat. The streaming of Uldir brought streaming of wow to a whole new level and some well deserved attention to all the players that work so hard to play at a high level. They once Method will be teaming up with Redbull to give their content a professional level of production value.
I’m hoping to see more high end raiders get into streaming. I know that I will be tuning in to twitch to watch those gracious enough to share their journey with us plebs. Tune into Twitch.tv for this epic event starting on Tuesday January 28th and get hyped!
Method has not been shy about showing their progress to the world as they work on the final boss of Uldir. This is an unusual move for a high profile guild since most opt for secrecy when working on their own world rankings. Many of Method’s raid team have been dominating the top stream spots for World of Warcraft for the past week. At current tally Method streamers are responsible for 78% of the all of the World of Warcraft viewership today on twitch.tv. After following their progress It is apparent that the production value of their content is incredibly high and is reminiscent of the Olympics coverage on NBC.
They are being supported by Discord, Wowhead, Redbull and many other mainstream companies throughout their up to 16 hour days spent throwing themselves at the bosses of Uldir. We’ve seen an outpouring of support for the raid team through twitch subscriptions, and over $3000 in contributions and not to mention the branded merchandise that they are selling on Method.gg
I only point this all out because I think it makes a lot of business sense the way that they did things and managed to win the day! They gave us a reason to be excited about WoW by including the masses when most guilds would have shut us out. The only sad part is that now that the top spot is taken we won’t be seeing as much excitement around the race. I’m already looking forward to next tier 😂😂😂😂
Great job to everyone involved with the race, the raiders of Method, the hosts, production crew and everyone that made this amazing show possible.
For a couple of expansions now World of Warcraft has been putting in place gates to their content in order to trickle out new things for us to do in game a little bit at a time. In the past as soon as a new game opened up you would have access to all of the content including the large scale raids that require you to have between 8 and 40 people all at maximum level to be able to kill some bosses. This often is where the best loot in the game was and was the goal of a lot of players to get to and through it. The day that the expansion would launch you would have a mad rush to get to the end game, where many of us thought the game truly began. We would play a crazy amount in that first week and it wasn’t unusual for my friends and I to clock in 16+ hours per day during this first big push. Once we got to that final level we would switch gears and start hunting for the best equipment available to us outside of raids. So this meant running the smaller dungeons which only require 5 players to complete, doing additional quests or any other task that the game developers decided that we would need to do to get some shiny new gear. During this time, if there were attunements needed to get into the higher level content we would work on these as well. A raid attunement is mostly a relic of the past and was just a way to further gate the content and slow down the progress of a player to reach this content. Most of the time it was a time consuming task that we were forced to do in order to play the part of the game that we really wanted to play. I realize that all this makes me sound like the grandma of raiding “Back in my day we had to do an insanely long quest chain in order to even step foot in Onyxias Lair” and we did this backwards in the snow up hill, or something like that. I only talk about the past to highlight how much better it is for those of us that enjoy raiding.
Full disclosure: I used to consider myself to be super hard core. The way these games used to be meshed well with my play style. As I’ve gotten older I’ve witnessed the genre mature with me. To my delight I can continue to play how I want to play and the game rewards me, perhaps not as much as the poopsocking-hard-core-world-first-striving raiders…but I feel like there is still a place for me and I am satisfied with the majority of how WoW feels today.
This time around we got a generous span of time to level up and work on our characters. What the gates to Uldir finally did open, we were itching to get in there. The layout of Uldir was reminiscent of Wildstar’s Datascape and Zul’gurub from WoW classic. There were blood hexers and lots of pulsating blood graphics, which I personally don’t care for. The fights were messy and chaotic and if your group had high damage output, many of the fight’s mechanics could be bypassed. Some of the heroic fights were a little too easy and I know that once we clear the heroic version of Uldir we will be clammoring for them to introduce cross-server mythic raiding.
My guild is more community than guild at the moment. Over the years we have formed lots of friendships with players that love raiding and communities have allowed us to play together without having to force everyone to pay for a server transfer. This is great for us but we are faced with having to wait an estimated 3 months for the mythic raids to be available to us. There are achievements for being one of the first 100 guilds of each faction to clear Uldir Mythic, I believe in order to make an effort to re-balance the factions. More and more people each year are playing the Horde faction because…hello? Bloodelfs! The imbalance is especially prevalent at the very highest level of raiding. Only 5 of the top 50 guilds as of today play the Alliance faction.
Encouraging raiders to switch factions is a smart way to spread out some of the population. I know that when ever I’m looking for a faction/server to play on in any game I look for: 1. a high population server and 2. Where ever the best guilds play. I’m not alone in this. Take a look at my server Illidan. There are a lot of raiders on my server which makes recruiting much easier and is very attractive to players that like to raid since there are so many options for guilds if one doesn’t work out. And if you really want to shoot for the stars we have some of the best guilds in the US on our server.
I’m hoping that Blizzard will decide to open up mythic raids for cross server sooner than the 100/100 clears. The idea of a guild is changing with addons, cross server play and communities we shouldn’t be squeezed into the green-text guild box the same way that we played in the past. We are evolving as a player base and measures like gating us out of content is not good for business.