WoW Remix

Gamer Nature

ffxiv 2013-10-07 19-56-43-29

One of the things I have learned while playing Final Fantasy XIV A Realm Reborn… is that any player from 11 or 14 classic… really hates it when a player compares the game to World of Warcraft.  I’ve seen so many of these “classic” players fill with so much rage the first time someone mentions WoW.  Yesterday I encountered a small bit of it outside of the game in a G+ thread where myself and another tank were giving an up and coming Gladiator some advice on how best to deal with multi-mob threat.

Best advise I have to you is: don’t expect this game to have "WoW equivalents." This isn’t WoW. It’s not a WoW clone. It’s not trying to be WoW. You’ll enjoy the game a lot more if you take it as it is, rather than forcing it to fit some molded preconception you have for it. You’re trying to fit a circle peg into a square hole.

WoW Remix

So I found the above comment rather puzzling.  Especially coming from where this game did… the new version while not a “WoW Clone” is at the very least a WoW Remix.  Almost every ability I have has some simulacrum in World of Warcraft.  For example I think of my Warrior as a mix between a Druid tank and a Deathknight tank.  While it is in fact a unique beast… I still refer to the process of tabbing through mobs and applying Butchers Block as “Tab Sunder”.  Everything ultimately gets referred to more often than not by the wow name for it.  I don’t teleport back to my home location… I hearth.

Since most of the active MMO gamer pool has a relatively short memory… this is the way it has always been.  Before WoW claimed the crown as the most popular MMO… each new release got referred to by the terms we used in Everquest.  Damaging yourself to get back mana… was referred to as “Twitching” or “Cading” in reference to the Necromancer or Shaman spells.  Any form of a speed boost was often referred to as “SoW”, I can remember hearing people call the various speed powers “SoW” in City of Heroes.  To some extent listening to the FFXI diehards talk in FFXIV ARR has been a trip down memory lane… because those players carried with them terms from EQ into XI like DD for direct damage.

Top Dog Sets Rules

Awhile back there was a thread somewhere asking what games you would suggest to new players… and quite honestly despite my sordid relationship with the game, I have to say I would always suggest that someone play at least SOME World of Warcraft.  In my own guild we have a few players who have never played the game, and as a result they miss the references that are made in guild chat and mumble all of the time.  Thing is… this is not just a thing my guild does, this is a thing EVERY guild does in EVERY new game.  World of Warcraft had its own vocabulary that was grown out of the lingo that we used in Everquest.  Essentially as that game eclipsed the other games, its ability names started to take the place of the previous ones that were used.

Today going into any MMO for the first year at least… every single thing in game is going to be referred to by its WoW equivalent.  So the fact that as a seasoned MMO player… I can find immediate and direct WoW equivalents makes me think that the above statement is a little naïve.  FFXIV very much has wow equivalents, just like every game since the rise of wow has… and every game after will as well.  It is the fact that a game becomes the market leader that determines who dictates the vocabulary, because essentially there is nothing new under the sun.  Everything we do in FFXIV also has a direct EQ vocabulary equivalent, as everything we see today is a remix of the things that came before it.  The comparisons will someday shift again, but only when a game has eclipsed the current leader.

9 thoughts on “WoW Remix

  1. No one keeps saying that WoW is a “D&D remix” though, even though it owes it’s existence to the PnP game in more ways than a lot of modern MMOs owes it to WoW. Remember, EQ was first with the hot-bars and all that.

    People like patterns, and it happens that the pattern most people seem to be familiar with is WoW. If you WANT to see the patterns, you will. But no one is pulling anyone in the direction of making the inference or bringing it up in chat. People just DO.

    Personally, I think WoW’s actual legacy isn’t about it’s mechanics, but about the mindset that it laid at our feet. Loot, gear-score, e-peen…people use their experiences in these games to measure themselves against other players. When someone mentions WoW in another game, it’s usually in context of personal achievement (which can take many forms, from outright boasting to more covert ways of establishing one’s bona fides, like name dropping or “oh look! a casual reminisce about my experience in that other game”). When stepping into a new game, people want other people to know that they are experienced with this kind of thing, that they know the ropes, and that they should be respected for their past achievements which everyone should expect they will continue in this new game. It’s far more of a bridge between the ego established in a previous, widely experienced game than it is a compare and contrast in mechanics.

    • I think for us the vast majority of our references to WoW are in a kind of shorthand for explaining mechanics. This is why I have noticed we do it… because of the couple of people who have no wow based point of reference. For years our guild has used a kind of “darmok and jalad at tanagra” way of explaining fights. This is like Lich King mixed with a little Razorgore. Since we are mostly ex-raiders that immediate tells us what to expect without having to say much else. Now that we have a bunch of folks without that shared lineage I am noticing just how much we use this shorthand to explain things. Granted this is all inside of guild, I think as whole we are pretty allergic to pugging, so we don’t mingle with the community over dungeon runs much. But within guild groups we have always just taken for granted this shared WoW lineage, much in the same way that a lot of players do that in the community.

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