Greatness, in the gaming world, is measured on two axes. The first one is when a game kick starts a new genre. Titles like Wolfenstein 3D and DOOM, Thief: The Dark Project, and Neverwinter Nights (the 1991 MMO), can be counted in this class.
The other one consists of games that revolutionized the genre. Half-Life 2, Age of Empires, The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, Uncharted, Need For Speed: Most Wanted – all of these games changed their genre forever.
It is among these giants that World of Warcraft finds itself. Released in 2004, it was not the first MMORPG. It wasn’t the last, either. Titles like EverQuest and Guild Wars had been around for longer, but WoW set the template for what players would come to expect from fantasy MMORPGs.
EverQuest and Guild Wars can still be played today, and many people do still play them. For everyone else who has been playing Shadowlands, the latest WoW expansion, and is getting stuck on the first raid, you can engage WoW Boosting Service to get yourself through the first gauntlet in your road to save the world.
World of Warcraft retains its seat at the pinnacle of MMORPGs. How? Let’s chart its road to success through the ages.
On the Shoulders of Giants
World of Warcraft wasn’t a brand new thing. Blizzard already had three critically acclaimed and popular games set in Azeroth. Warcraft I, II, & III were all very popular, and these games developed the story of the world for a decade. So, when WoW was announced in 2001, there was already a fanbase ready to invest time and money in it.
People from different walks of life, and different parts of the world, who had previously played the games in the privacy of their homes, by themselves, were now thrown together with a choice to make: Alliance or Hoard? And being thrown together like that had its consequences.
Bonds Forged in War
Back in the day, to get into a party, you had to stand somewhere public and /shout in chat for people to either pick you or pick someone to round out your group. The party thus formed was a mix of people from a lot of different places. This got people talking, and in those days, making friends from across the world was still a novel thing. Those friendships lasted.
Plus, you didn’t boot people because of minor slights or mistakes. Why? Because nobody wanted to shout for half an hour again. So, toleration and acceptance were high, resulting in long-lasting friendships.
WoW, back in the day, had a very slow pace. To teleport, you had to find and pay a wizard. To go places, you had to walk. To finish quests, you had to team up. Everything was designed to have you experience the truly vast world and have fun while doing so.
Unsurprisingly, that was among the first things to go. WoW today is extremely streamlined, with the pace of action sped up due to popular demand. Leveling up happens very quickly, as does travel. Party formation is now automatic. No more shouting at the town square. Which has also loosened the bonds thus formed – party members are interchangeable and expendable now.
Min-Maxing to Victory
Min-Maxing is a popular strategy in role-playing games where players make a concerted effort to make their builds as efficient as possible – by maximizing strengths and minimizing weaknesses. On paper, this isn’t a huge problem. In practice, it is a very different story.
Min-Maxing involves analyzing stat allocation in conjunction with gear loadout, party composition, skills and spells, and finds what works for what kind of playstyle you have. Plus, this knowledge is easy to get n forums, guides, and YouTube videos… which causes another problem.
Every party and guild wants to maximize their potential. So, unless you adhere to min-maxing and spec out your character in the most profitable way, you are likely to never get picked up. Which is a shame because World of Warcraft, when it started out, thrived on the freedom it afforded its players to be who they wanted to be and play as they wanted to play in the vast world of Azeroth.
All the changes that happened are just the sign of the times. It is a much more fast-paced and competitive game now, and with every expansion, it changes a little more. However, for those who want to experience what it was like, there is always World of Warcraft Classic, a retro MMO.
In the end, no matter how the game changes and how many players come and go, there will always be someone – you – to stand in the way of darkness and protect Azeroth.