WoW: Sunwell Isle and the Power to Change
The new Sunwell Isle daily quests have a compelling aspect like none I've seen in an MMO before. I'm usually ambivalent about dailies in World of Warcraft. On the one hand, they allow me to do something productive in a short amount of time, which is useful when I have a limited period online. On the other, they're the ultimate in repetitive tasks, which I abhor. But the Shattered Sun Offensive quests are making me consider putting dailies on my calendar.
The Quel'Danas ones, though, have another aspect - you feel that you're changing the game world. It's not true, strictly speaking - the new phases of the reclamation of the island will proceed automatically after a while, even if nobody does the quests. And your individual contribution is tiny - there are hundreds of turn-ins required for each percentage change. But there's a feeling of progress in seeing that percentage rise, and a feeling of real victory as the next phase starts. And the change will not go backwards - or if Blizzard do something really strange and sections of the Island do get retaken by the Dawnblade and the Wretched, it'll be accounted for in the storyline. It's not the instance situation where you bring down a boss, and they're back tomorrow.
I think that these change-the-world dailies are a great new way to approach both patch changes and player motivation. I'd be very pleased to see a few of these attached to any patch, even if it's something as simple as rebuilding some of the ruins in Lordaeron so a new vendor can take up residence, or as large as a Scarlet Crusade-type group that actually can be permanently defeated in a series of minor victories worldwide, perhaps over a couple of months.
Some that don't happen automatically, even if they're purely cosmetic, would also be interesting. A daily quest contributing to the repair of the cemetery fences in Brill, say - it would make no difference to gameplay, apart from something like small reputation or cash rewards - but it would be something you'd help to permanently change in the world.
Posted by Drew Shiel at April 3, 2008 9:44 AM