WARNING: Rambling and disjointed rant incoming.
I got into an argument the other day with one of my co-worker/friends who also plays WoW. He is quitting WoW and insists that players are making a mass exodus because of the difficulty of Cataclysm raids. He claims that he's been raiding since Vanilla, and these are the hardest dungeons he has ever seen. He insists that only the most hardcore of elite guilds are getting any bosses killed. He claims that its not fair if one person's mistake causes the raid to wipe.
I can't really argue with any of it because I am not personally raiding at this time, although I have friends that are, but the whole conversation really ticked me off. I'm sorry, but even if raids are "too hard" right now, we haven't even seen a real patch yet (well, up until yesterday).
Comparing Cataclysm to Vanilla is like comparing apples and oranges, yeah, they're both fruit, but...
I highly doubt that my friends' guilds can be considered "the most hardcore of elite," afterall, I am on the Cairne realm. We're notorious for being low on the PVE charts, yet many of these guilds are at 7 or 8 bosses down.
As far as one person causing wipes... uhh... hello? Lich King Defile anyone? Seriously? Can't remember that? It really wasn't that long ago. And this was certainly not the only situation where one person's mistake could cause wipes. Remember Flamewreath on Shade of Aran? Remember Solarian's Wrath of the Astromancer?
I find it hard to believe that raiding is so hard that people are quitting in droves. If that was the case we would have either seen a massive nerfbat taken to the instances or a massive boost to player talents/skills by now. Blizzard would not sit idly by if the game was so unplayable.
There is a fine line to walk between making the gameplay too easy at endgame and making it too difficult. Maybe its because I am a BC baby, but I think the raiding difficulty in BC was just about the right balance. If current raiding is anything like that was, then I'd say things are just about right.
Being a blogger, I see people come and go all the time for various reasons. The reasons I see more often are not because of the difficulty of raid content, although I'm sure some people do quit for that reason. If I were to quit the game, it certainly would not be because of the difficulty of raids.
Honestly, I find it very telling that when things get hard this particular individual gives up. It speaks volumes about his character. Then again, who am I to judge what he does during his free time. This feels like yet another instance of rage quit. No one does the quitting thing quite like a WoW player does.
I can't sit here and say that I think WoW is the best game ever made and that it will never jump the shark, but I don't think it has yet. At least it hasn't for me.