“Adding new titles is just TOO MUCH WORK”

Continuing some ponderings on the whole Exalted screw up, and adding new titles is not the problem.

Achivements as implemented were fundamanetally flawed from the word go, technically the implementation works, add some additional database fields, track what players are doing, flip flags in the DB from false to true, increment counters, award flashy thing and possibly trigger the delivery in the post of a “something”.

Technically there is no problem.

Achievements peaked too early

“Seriously!  When do you think they peaked?” I hear you cry, it’s simple they peaked at the launch of Wrath.  With the creation of “Exalted”, “Epic”, “Superior” and so on, effectively burning the ‘quality’ end of the namespace they can use at the very start Blizz boxed themselves into a corner with nowhere to go.  What do we see with the new expansion, horrors such as “Cataclysmically Epic”.

Seriously guys, that screams of a development team which knows they have an achivement slot to fill which is “fill all your gear slots at iLevel >= $foo” but don’t have a decent name in the bank ready.  I pity the poor souls who have to work on the achievements for the next expansion.

There are some notable exceptions where some good solutions have been found to the problem, the Loremaster achievement for example has maintained continuity, to a certain extent, of progress for those working it.  If you finished one of the meta’s then that’s kept but all others get reset and anyone who earnt it prior to the change retains their achievement and title.

Or more simply put achievements were designed as a single expansion feature, rather than the game spanning monster it has become.

Fixing the problem and OCD

Getting achievements back into a state where they can grow through the content patches and expansions is going to be a headache for someone, and they’re welcome to it.

Additional titles isn’t necessarily the fix, providing a grandfathered moving target for this sort of achievement seems to be the best.  Where those who get it before the expansion / patch hits keep the acheivement but everyone else has to suck it up and aim for the new level.  This keeps “title bloat” under control without annoying too many people, and it’s easier to justify than “we’re moving the goal posts and taking your title from you, tough, oh and we’ll do it again in two years time”.

Beyond that the team is going to have to look at picking the names for achievements with more of an eye to the future rather than handing out the best ones now.

and finally…

Be honest and communicate with us, too often Blizz has pulled this sort of undocumented stunt and it only pisses the players off, there is no good side to their handling of these issues.  This is the biggest problem Blizz have to fix.