WoW Guild Leader Snags Epic Oscar

WoW Guild Leader Snags Epic Oscar

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There were quite a few golden statuettes handed out at Sunday night's Academy Awards, and at least one of them went to a gamer - specifically, a hardcore World of Warcraft guild leader, no less.

Steven Preeg is a visual effects artist who has worked on prestigious films like the Lord of the Rings trilogy, and not-so-prestigious films like the Will Smith re-imagining of I, Robot. Sunday night, Preeg and his team took home the coveted Oscar statuette for their visual effects work on The Curious Case of Benjamin Button - quite an honor.

Preeg, however, is no stranger to phat lewt. In our mundane world of mere flesh, he might be an award-winning visual effects artist ... in Azeroth, though, Steven Preeg is a level 80 Combat Rogue with maxed-out Enchanting and Inscription - and a successful guild leader to boot. Preeg and his guildmates have cleared almost all the content available in Wrath of the Lich King thus far: All that remains for them is to tackle the wicked black dragon Sartharion while leaving all three of his bodyguards alive (aka Sarth 3D for those of you familiar with the lingo).

Unfortunately there's no "Honored by the Academy" in-game title yet. Preeg will just have to live with his "Champion of the Frozen Wastes" for now.

Who says that WoW players never accomplish anything?

(WoW Insider, Via MTV Multiplayer)

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So this is proof that WoW players are human too? I'm not sure I buy it. Maybe he's a robot...

galletea:
So this is proof that WoW players are human too? I'm not sure I buy it. Maybe he's a robot...

That's offensive to me - and for another thing, that doesn't compute at all!

Shame he had to fill the other stereotype of ubergeek tho, heh. But congratulations to the guy for showing you can excel at WOW and other things at the same time.

IRONMAN WAS ROBBED!

Combat rogue? Psssh, Hunters are the way to go.

But seriously, I'm sure there are more people like him out there. It's just taboo nowadays to be known to play WoW. My buddy actually has to hide it from his girlfriend because he isn't sure what she'll say.

Wow, you mean you can actually have a real job and play WOW too. I need to go tell my cousin, he's been sitting on his ever expanding ass for the last 3 years because no one told him you can do both.

I'd like to thank Steven Preeg, CantTakeTheFunk, everyone at the escapist, god, and Buddha.
(music plays me off the stage)

CantFaketheFunk:

That's offensive to me - and for another thing, that doesn't compute at all!

I knew it! There had to be a reason. Maybe it's a glitch that makes the robots play it for hours on end...Or maybe I'm exaggerating to the nth degree. Either way combat rogue does sound like a pretty cool thing to be.

By day he was a visual effects artist, but at night he became Combat Rogue

galletea:

CantFaketheFunk:

That's offensive to me - and for another thing, that doesn't compute at all!

I knew it! There had to be a reason. Maybe it's a glitch that makes the robots play it for hours on end...Or maybe I'm exaggerating to the nth degree. Either way combat rogue does sound like a pretty cool thing to be.

By day he was a visual effects artist, but at night he became Combat Rogue

That DOES sound awesome... Also Benjamin Button be an awesome movie.

galletea:
So this is proof that WoW players are human too? I'm not sure I buy it. Maybe he's a robot...

He's perfect. Alittle too perfect. *Flamethrowers*

The amazing part is that one of the reasons he is that well geared is because he is a guild leader. If there is anything I learned from my years of MMO's you do not have your guild leader be the weakest link in your team when you are supposed to be the one calling the shots.

That is really impressive and congrats to the man. Now imagine if Blizzard made that an achivement in game.

80 I'd like to thank the academy
Win an Oscar

Oscar or not, if he can't clear Sarth 3D, the guy's a total noob.

HSIAMetalKing:
Oscar or not, if he can't clear Sarth 3D, the guy's a total noob.

I can't clear Sarth 3D :(

Though I do have the arguably-more-difficult The Undying. So I guess it evens out.

the captain:
Wow, you mean you can actually have a real job and play WOW too. I need to go tell my cousin, he's been sitting on his ever expanding ass for the last 3 years because no one told him you can do both.

I'd like to thank Steven Preeg, CantTakeTheFunk, everyone at the escapist, god, and Buddha.
(music plays me off the stage)

Make no mistake: If I ever win some sort of award in which I get to give a little speech, I'll thank Escapist Magazine first of all, even if it had nothing to do with it.

How can he possibly be guild leader, level 80 and have a JOB at the same time?

On another note, people have to seriously stop playing this damn game. Don't people realize it's been specifically designed to waste your time by now?

It's rather upsetting when people say things like this

Pyronox:
How can he possibly be guild leader, level 80 and have a JOB at the same time?

On another note, people have to seriously stop playing this damn game. Don't people realize it's been specifically designed to waste your time by now?

I know plenty of people who play WoW and lead lives that are more successful then you're Xbox achievement score will ever be. The people that set the bad example by becoming so absorbed into a video game get all the attention from people who don't actually play the game, then when those people look at the average WoW player they just assume they have no life.

Good for Steven, he should have shown his True nerdyness and did a /roll to see who got to keep the Award.

Zallest:
It's rather upsetting when people say things like this

Pyronox:
How can he possibly be guild leader, level 80 and have a JOB at the same time?

On another note, people have to seriously stop playing this damn game. Don't people realize it's been specifically designed to waste your time by now?

I know plenty of people who play WoW and lead lives that are more successful then you're Xbox achievement score will ever be. The people that set the bad example by becoming so absorbed into a video game get all the attention from people who don't actually play the game, then when those people look at the average WoW player they just assume they have no life.

Good for Steven, he should have shown his True nerdyness and did a /roll to see who got to keep the Award.

Oh please, the first was a joke, the second was the truth.

level250geek:
IRONMAN WAS ROBBED!

Yep, how does Benjamin Button beat a guy in a freakin suit of armour!

Pyronox:

Oh please, the first was a joke, the second was the truth.

I used you're quote as an example but the joke was poor, and tell me is the game a waste of my time if I enjoy playing it? If so then any game you've ever played and enjoyed is just as much a waste of your time as WoW is a waste of mine.

Pyronox:

Oh please, the first was a joke, the second was the truth.

Well hey, it's enjoyable time-wasting, so no problem on my end.

Zallest:

Pyronox:

Oh please, the first was a joke, the second was the truth.

I used you're quote as an example but the joke was poor, and tell me is the game a waste of my time if I enjoy playing it? If so then any game you've ever played and enjoyed is just as much a waste of your time as WoW is a waste of mine.

I said it's DESIGNED to waste your time. At that point, it's not a pastime anymore like most games. It's become an addiction for millions now, and the game's never been worse when I stopped playing, and I'm glad I did. It was good at release, but some genius thought it was a good idea to fire all the people that made their games successful.

Pyronox:

I said it's DESIGNED to waste your time. At that point, it's not a pastime anymore like most games. It's become an addiction for millions now, and the game's never been worse when I stopped playing, and I'm glad I did. It was good at release, but some genius thought it was a good idea to fire all the people that made their games successful.

I'm just gonna go out on a limb here and say that you don't know what you're talking about.

The WoW design team is largely the same today as it ever was (I say largely because Blizzard rotates people between their franchises to prevent burnout), it's just bigger.

I can understand why people would prefer Classic WoW to BC/WotLK, but to say that it's better is a gross misnomer. It's funny that you accuse the game of being designed to waste one's time when they've done away with so many of the timesinks that were in Classic.

CantFaketheFunk:

Pyronox:

I said it's DESIGNED to waste your time. At that point, it's not a pastime anymore like most games. It's become an addiction for millions now, and the game's never been worse when I stopped playing, and I'm glad I did. It was good at release, but some genius thought it was a good idea to fire all the people that made their games successful.

I'm just gonna go out on a limb here and say that you don't know what you're talking about.

The WoW design team is largely the same today as it ever was (I say largely because Blizzard rotates people between their franchises to prevent burnout), it's just bigger.

I can understand why people would prefer Classic WoW to BC/WotLK, but to say that it's better is a gross misnomer. It's funny that you accuse the game of being designed to waste one's time when they've done away with so many of the timesinks that were in Classic.

Oh really? Can you tell what a daily quest is? What? What was that?

Give me a break. Don't try to defend something without making any sense.

By the time BC was over, all you began to realize that while you were questing as fast as possible to raid as soon as possible all the epic feeling went away with your epics.

No, it's just a bad game now. People who jump on it don't seem to have played much, let alone something good.

EDIT: Oh and on top of continuing to stubbornly rip off Warhammer lore, they started ripping off Warhammer Online's features. What a joke.

Good for Steven.
I'm getting tired of the constant bashing us WoW players receive.
This is yet more proof that WoW players lead rich and interesting lives too.

Pyronox:

Oh really? Can you tell what a daily quest is? What? What was that?

Give me a break. Don't try to defend something without making any sense.

By the time BC was over, all you began to realize that while you were questing as fast as possible to raid as soon as possible all the epic feeling went away with your epics.

No, it's just a bad game now. People who jump on it don't seem to have played much, let alone something good.

EDIT: Oh and on top of continuing to stubbornly rip off Warhammer lore, they started ripping off Warhammer Online's features. What a joke.

It's hilarious that the example you chose to try and prove your point ends up just proving mine.

What is a daily quest? First, let's start with the obvious - no one ever forced you to do dailies. There were three reasons anyone ever did dailies:

1.) Reputation
2.) Money
3.) Recipes (Cooking, mainly)

Each of these is a tremendous improvement over how it was in Classic. Classic didn't have daily quests, they had repeatable quests - which were far more time-consuming and grind-heavy than dailies.

Let's look back at Classic, shall we?

1.) Rep:

If you want to rep up with Argent Dawn, you ... grind Scourgestones, either by running Strat/Scholo over and over again, or farming mobs. Or doing the cauldron quests.

If you want to rep up with Cenarion Circle, you ... farm Morrowgrain, or you do the Silithus quests (not in-game at launch), which were still incredibly grindy. Or, you get 19 other people to do AQ20.

If you want to rep up with Thorium Brotherhood you farm like 10 different things.

If you want to rep up with any of the cities, you farm Runecloth.

And God help you if you wanted to rep up with the Wintersaber Trainers.

2.) Money:

What did you do if you wanted gold? You farmed. You farmed for drops, you farmed for rare recipes, you farmed Live Strat for Righteous Orbs, you farmed for just cash. There was no easy way to get money.

3.) Recipes:

Guess what you did? You farmed. You went to WPL and killed Scarlets for hours to try and find Crusader enchant.

What was there to do once you hit 60 in Classic? You were lucky enough to be in a raid guild - where the hardest part was finding 39 other people and you had to have five different types of consumables: Night Dragons Breaths, Protection potions, mana/health potions, elixirs, flasks, food buffs (that all stacked, so you'd better have ALL of them)... you did BGs (and got killed by raiders), you farmed for stuff, or you ran Scholo/Strat/DM/BRS over and over again.

I don't get how any one can possibly argue that Classic was less of a time-sink or somehow less convenient than the current state of the game. There are so many more options now that cater to a much wider selection of the playerbase than there ever were before.

Nostalgia is a powerful thing. But as someone who's been playing the game since just after release, and as someone whose job involves looking at different MMOs, you honestly don't have a clue what you're talking about.

CantFaketheFunk:

Pyronox:

Oh really? Can you tell what a daily quest is? What? What was that?

Give me a break. Don't try to defend something without making any sense.

By the time BC was over, all you began to realize that while you were questing as fast as possible to raid as soon as possible all the epic feeling went away with your epics.

No, it's just a bad game now. People who jump on it don't seem to have played much, let alone something good.

EDIT: Oh and on top of continuing to stubbornly rip off Warhammer lore, they started ripping off Warhammer Online's features. What a joke.

It's hilarious that the example you chose to try and prove your point ends up just proving mine.

What is a daily quest? First, let's start with the obvious - no one ever forced you to do dailies. There were three reasons anyone ever did dailies:

1.) Reputation
2.) Money
3.) Recipes (Cooking, mainly)

Each of these is a tremendous improvement over how it was in Classic. Classic didn't have daily quests, they had repeatable quests - which were far more time-consuming and grind-heavy than dailies.

Let's look back at Classic, shall we?

1.) Rep:

If you want to rep up with Argent Dawn, you ... grind Scourgestones, either by running Strat/Scholo over and over again, or farming mobs. Or doing the cauldron quests.

If you want to rep up with Cenarion Circle, you ... farm Morrowgrain, or you do the Silithus quests (not in-game at launch), which were still incredibly grindy. Or, you get 19 other people to do AQ20.

If you want to rep up with Thorium Brotherhood you farm like 10 different things.

If you want to rep up with any of the cities, you farm Runecloth.

And God help you if you wanted to rep up with the Wintersaber Trainers.

2.) Money:

What did you do if you wanted gold? You farmed. You farmed for drops, you farmed for rare recipes, you farmed Live Strat for Righteous Orbs, you farmed for just cash. There was no easy way to get money.

3.) Recipes:

Guess what you did? You farmed. You went to WPL and killed Scarlets for hours to try and find Crusader enchant.

What was there to do once you hit 60 in Classic? You were lucky enough to be in a raid guild - where the hardest part was finding 39 other people and you had to have five different types of consumables: Night Dragons Breaths, Protection potions, mana/health potions, elixirs, flasks, food buffs (that all stacked, so you'd better have ALL of them)... you did BGs (and got killed by raiders), you farmed for stuff, or you ran Scholo/Strat/DM/BRS over and over again.

I don't get how any one can possibly argue that Classic was less of a time-sink or somehow less convenient than the current state of the game. There are so many more options now that cater to a much wider selection of the playerbase than there ever were before.

Nostalgia is a powerful thing. But as someone who's been playing the game since just after release, and as someone whose job involves looking at different MMOs, you honestly don't have a clue what you're talking about.

Ok, you`re totally missing the point. OF COURSE dailies are an improvement on repeatables... it`s just both should never be there in the first place. How can I explain it? It's just that.

But besides that, Classic was way better than any patched version or expansion when people barely started to do MC. I played back then, and just leveling up was interesting. It's difficult to describe. But whatever.

Keep thinking whatever you will.

Their job isnt to make fun games it's to make money.

Pyronox:

Ok, you`re totally missing the point. OF COURSE dailies are an improvement on repeatables... it`s just both should never be there in the first place. How can I explain it? It's just that.

But besides that, Classic was way better than any patched version or expansion when people barely started to do MC. I played back then, and just leveling up was interesting. It's difficult to describe. But whatever.

Keep thinking whatever you will.

Their job isnt to make fun games it's to make money.

I know exactly what you're trying to describe. There was a feeling of wonder and curiosity pre-BC, a feeling of "ooh, I wonder what's over that hill over there?" And that's something that they can't replicate - partly the playerbase's fault, since they've distilled the game down to an absolute science by now, but partly just because it's been running four years by now.

Yes, that feeling isn't in the game anymore, but that has nothing to do with the game itself. From any objective standpoint, WoW has only been improving - look at the new phasing system in WotLK. That's huge, and completely changes the way you experience zones while leveling up. There's nothing like that in old-world Azeroth. I've been going back to Kalimdor/EK to do my loremaster achievements and it just reminded me how much of a pain in the ass the game could be at times.

Yes, they are a company, and at the end of the day they do have families to feed and bills to pay. This is true of any company - Bioware? Yep, they need to make money. Valve? They have to make money. Blizzard is no different. What sets companies like Valve and Blizzard apart from the rest of the pack - in the minds of many - is that there really is a second bottom line. Do you honestly think a company who was just concerned with making money would have canned WC Adventures or SC Ghost? Those games were guaranteed blockbusters, and if all they wanted was cold hard cash, they could have released them anyway.

I'd tell the story from Blizzcon again, but that one's worn out by now :P

CantFaketheFunk:

Pyronox:

Ok, you`re totally missing the point. OF COURSE dailies are an improvement on repeatables... it`s just both should never be there in the first place. How can I explain it? It's just that.

But besides that, Classic was way better than any patched version or expansion when people barely started to do MC. I played back then, and just leveling up was interesting. It's difficult to describe. But whatever.

Keep thinking whatever you will.

Their job isnt to make fun games it's to make money.

I know exactly what you're trying to describe. There was a feeling of wonder and curiosity pre-BC, a feeling of "ooh, I wonder what's over that hill over there?" And that's something that they can't replicate - partly the playerbase's fault, since they've distilled the game down to an absolute science by now, but partly just because it's been running four years by now.

Yes, that feeling isn't in the game anymore, but that has nothing to do with the game itself. From any objective standpoint, WoW has only been improving - look at the new phasing system in WotLK. That's huge, and completely changes the way you experience zones while leveling up. There's nothing like that in old-world Azeroth. I've been going back to Kalimdor/EK to do my loremaster achievements and it just reminded me how much of a pain in the ass the game could be at times.

Yes, they are a company, and at the end of the day they do have families to feed and bills to pay. This is true of any company - Bioware? Yep, they need to make money. Valve? They have to make money. Blizzard is no different. What sets companies like Valve and Blizzard apart from the rest of the pack - in the minds of many - is that there really is a second bottom line. Do you honestly think a company who was just concerned with making money would have canned WC Adventures or SC Ghost? Those games were guaranteed blockbusters, and if all they wanted was cold hard cash, they could have released them anyway.

I'd tell the story from Blizzcon again, but that one's worn out by now :P

I think the feeling of wonder was around when gameplay was slightly different. I mean of course you're amazed at a big game at first, but I've played Morrowind for soooooooooooo long and even if it's an old singleplayer it still makes me feel that way.

As for money, I can say that since the merger with Activision and the firing of Blizzard north I got shit like BC, coloring book diablo, and copy-paste-craft.

So, yeah. CoD CoD CoD CoD CoD on one side, Cartoon Ripoff on the other. It's just not the same.

What infuriates me the most was how easily they got rid of the Schaeffers and Roper without even giving us some insight of what happened.

"Oh sorry, we don't want to make good games anymore, you're fired."

Pyronox:

I think the feeling of wonder was around when gameplay was slightly different. I mean of course you're amazed at a big game at first, but I've played Morrowind for soooooooooooo long and even if it's an old singleplayer it still makes me feel that way.

As for money, I can say that since the merger with Activision and the firing of Blizzard north I got shit like BC, coloring book diablo, and copy-paste-craft.

So, yeah. CoD CoD CoD CoD CoD on one side, Cartoon Ripoff on the other. It's just not the same.

What infuriates me the most was how easily they got rid of the Schaeffers and Roper without even giving us some insight of what happened.

"Oh sorry, we don't want to make good games anymore, you're fired."

I'm just gonna step in here and say... dude drop it already. We get it, you do not like Wrath of the Lich King. You've made your point very clear already, and now you're just trolling.

Pyronox:

I think the feeling of wonder was around when gameplay was slightly different. I mean of course you're amazed at a big game at first, but I've played Morrowind for soooooooooooo long and even if it's an old singleplayer it still makes me feel that way.

As for money, I can say that since the merger with Activision and the firing of Blizzard north I got shit like BC, coloring book diablo, and copy-paste-craft.

So, yeah. CoD CoD CoD CoD CoD on one side, Cartoon Ripoff on the other. It's just not the same.

What infuriates me the most was how easily they got rid of the Schaeffers and Roper without even giving us some insight of what happened.

"Oh sorry, we don't want to make good games anymore, you're fired."

Sure, if by "different" you mean "worse."

BC was better than Classic (though it had its issues). WotLK blows BC and Classic out of the water. "Copy-paste-craft"? WotLK's zones are the best in WoW, period. Phasing is better than we've ever seen before. The *quests* are the best we've ever seen before - show me a quest in any other MMO that has you wrestling with a dragon in midair as you try to jam a spear down its throat.

"Coloring Book Diablo"? You have to be joking. You have to be. Go back and play Diablo II. Go to the jungles, play as a sorceress and see all the brightly colored spell effects. I did an interview a while back with Benjamin Boos, one of the artists who was instrumental in setting the color palette for Diablo II, and he agreed that D3 looks perfectly fine. This argument has been done to death, and it's frankly just groan-inducing at this point.

You have a strange alternate history in your head where Blizzard fired Roper and the Schaefers. They left on their own to start their own company, Flagship Studios - Blizzard didn't shutter Blizzard North until two years after they were gone.

CantFaketheFunk:

Pyronox:

I think the feeling of wonder was around when gameplay was slightly different. I mean of course you're amazed at a big game at first, but I've played Morrowind for soooooooooooo long and even if it's an old singleplayer it still makes me feel that way.

As for money, I can say that since the merger with Activision and the firing of Blizzard north I got shit like BC, coloring book diablo, and copy-paste-craft.

So, yeah. CoD CoD CoD CoD CoD on one side, Cartoon Ripoff on the other. It's just not the same.

What infuriates me the most was how easily they got rid of the Schaeffers and Roper without even giving us some insight of what happened.

"Oh sorry, we don't want to make good games anymore, you're fired."

Sure, if by "different" you mean "worse."

BC was better than Classic (though it had its issues). WotLK blows BC and Classic out of the water. "Copy-paste-craft"? WotLK's zones are the best in WoW, period. Phasing is better than we've ever seen before. The *quests* are the best we've ever seen before - show me a quest in any other MMO that has you wrestling with a dragon in midair as you try to jam a spear down its throat.

"Coloring Book Diablo"? You have to be joking. You have to be. Go back and play Diablo II. Go to the jungles, play as a sorceress and see all the brightly colored spell effects. I did an interview a while back with Benjamin Boos, one of the artists who was instrumental in setting the color palette for Diablo II, and he agreed that D3 looks perfectly fine. This argument has been done to death, and it's frankly just groan-inducing at this point.

You have a strange alternate history in your head where Blizzard fired Roper and the Schaefers. They left on their own to start their own company, Flagship Studios - Blizzard didn't shutter Blizzard North until two years after they were gone.

Jamming a spear down it's throat? I bet it looks better on paper.

Idk about when they left/were fired, it's been a while and I wouldn't be able to tell the difference at this point really. Point is they wont be there to save Diablo from this color vomit disaster that they are desperately trying to darken by adding children starving in wells.

But for the rest, I know I'm coming off as a troll, but you're coming off as a fanboy.

Pyronox:

Jamming a spear down it's throat? I bet it looks better on paper.

Idk about when they left/were fired, it's been a while and I wouldn't be able to tell the difference at this point really. Point is they wont be there to save Diablo from this color vomit disaster that they are desperately trying to darken by adding children starving in wells.

But for the rest, I know I'm coming off as a troll, but you're coming off as a fanboy.

It obviously looks better on paper, but the point remains that the quality of the quests in WotLK is MILES beyond Classic.

The difference is huge. You're saying that Blizz fired Roper/Schaefers because they weren't interested in making good games anymore. In reality, they left because they wanted to start their own company. Blizzard only shuttered Blizzard North when a huge part of the original team had already left, and many of the North employees were just rolled into the regular company anyway.

"Color vomit disaster"? Like I said. Go back and play Diablo II. It's plenty colorful. Even Act 4 in Hell is filled with reds and oranges, it's not just BLACK GRIM GRRR DARK. And you're in Hell - doesn't get more evil than that. If someone who was instrumental in setting the color palette for Diablo 2 looks at Diablo 3 and says "yeah, I don't know what the crazies are talking about, looks totally fine to me" then you have absolutely no leg to stand on.

More to the point, though, Diablo 2 had color because the designers understood that if the game is dark from start to finish then it gets boring. Hence why it went all "gloomy plains -> bright desert -> dark catacombs -> lush jungle," they were mixing it up. Hypothetically, say the beginning of the game is bright, colorful and cartoony. Later in the game, you go back to the same areas once the demons have marched over it and the entire place is scoured, burned to the ground. That'd have a lot more of an impact than if it was dark and gloomy to begin with, no?

I played Diablo 3 at BlizzCon. From the moment you get one of the audio journals that talks about the events of D1 and King Leoric, it's pretty obvious that it's a fairly grim game. You're making up a hypothetical My Pretty Pony game, not talking about the actual one.

If I'm coming off as a bit of a fanboy, it's because ... on some level, I suppose I am. I have a very deep respect for the Blizzard developers (past and present) and adore the games they make. Getting to visit the Blizzard campus and speak with them face to face, relax and have some hors d'eourves (however you spell that), I came away with even more respect than I went in with.

Also, I rather enjoy arguing. :P Especially when in some cases you're honestly just incorrect (like what you said about the Schaefers/Blizzard North). I do like to correct people.

CantFaketheFunk:

Pyronox:

Jamming a spear down it's throat? I bet it looks better on paper.

Idk about when they left/were fired, it's been a while and I wouldn't be able to tell the difference at this point really. Point is they wont be there to save Diablo from this color vomit disaster that they are desperately trying to darken by adding children starving in wells.

But for the rest, I know I'm coming off as a troll, but you're coming off as a fanboy.

It obviously looks better on paper, but the point remains that the quality of the quests in WotLK is MILES beyond Classic.

The difference is huge. You're saying that Blizz fired Roper/Schaefers because they weren't interested in making good games anymore. In reality, they left because they wanted to start their own company. Blizzard only shuttered Blizzard North when a huge part of the original team had already left, and many of the North employees were just rolled into the regular company anyway.

"Color vomit disaster"? Like I said. Go back and play Diablo II. It's plenty colorful. Even Act 4 in Hell is filled with reds and oranges, it's not just BLACK GRIM GRRR DARK. And you're in Hell - doesn't get more evil than that. If someone who was instrumental in setting the color palette for Diablo 2 looks at Diablo 3 and says "yeah, I don't know what the crazies are talking about, looks totally fine to me" then you have absolutely no leg to stand on.

More to the point, though, Diablo 2 had color because the designers understood that if the game is dark from start to finish then it gets boring. Hence why it went all "gloomy plains -> bright desert -> dark catacombs -> lush jungle," they were mixing it up. Hypothetically, say the beginning of the game is bright, colorful and cartoony. Later in the game, you go back to the same areas once the demons have marched over it and the entire place is scoured, burned to the ground. That'd have a lot more of an impact than if it was dark and gloomy to begin with, no?

I played Diablo 3 at BlizzCon. From the moment you get one of the audio journals that talks about the events of D1 and King Leoric, it's pretty obvious that it's a fairly grim game. You're making up a hypothetical My Pretty Pony game, not talking about the actual one.

If I'm coming off as a bit of a fanboy, it's because ... on some level, I suppose I am. I have a very deep respect for the Blizzard developers (past and present) and adore the games they make. Getting to visit the Blizzard campus and speak with them face to face, relax and have some hors d'eourves (however you spell that), I came away with even more respect than I went in with.

Also, I rather enjoy arguing. :P Especially when in some cases you're honestly just incorrect (like what you said about the Schaefers/Blizzard North). I do like to correct people.

I suppose we could argue for hours, but the moment I see D3 screenshots that don't have pools of blood with dismembered corpses and used torture chambers I shall nag you to no end >:D

 

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