I didn’t have to look up “I got nerfed Brah,” I understood the concept immediately because Nerf stuff has always intrigued me. I never thought that the toys and games we played were all that dangerous and that scars were just part of growing up, but Neft took it to a whole new level. So I knew it meant that you probably did not hit as hard as he did before. The term is used in the WoW community to describe any game mechanic change that might be looked at as making the game easier (or players weaker) and buff is the opposite.
With Cata Blizzard screwed the pooch. They released a lot of content that was consumed rapidly by the seasoned players (not just raiders) and screwed with gameplay a whole lot. In an effort to make things more accessible (something I wanted myself) they wrecked havoc with balancing. They thought that gear would fix everything but I think failed to calculate the rate that alts would raise, I mean its just 5 levels no matter how steep they are. The dungeon finder and guild perks made it so that leveling was quick and the bulk of the time was spent on dungeons or raids… and believe it or not, that is not everyone’s cup of tea.
Making people happy is an impossible job. As a GM making 40-50 people happy was impossible… imagine trying to keep 11+ million subscribers being probably a little more challenging.
Firelands sucked for me from the time it was released. The place has a horrible color scheme (yea lets make a place full of fire, where you will die if you stand on the fire, and the mobs have fire based abilities) Oh, but the bosses should be HUGE and make tanking them horrible while trying to stay out of the fire. I am sure plenty of people fell through that spider web wondering what the heck happened… its simply hard to see everything that is going on there… even on a good computer with a decent sized monitor. It really had made it hard for people that don’t have the latest and greatest machine to enjoy the raiding part of the game.
However, the gear curve (probably for the first time) made raiders who had conquered tier 11 heroics leapfrog directly to heroic content. I think most hardcore raiding guilds cleared firelands normal modes in a week and then started progression. I find it amusing that people asked for things to be more challenging only to hit a wall when blizzard did. Many raiders, the serious but still wannabe hardcore kind (several hours a week) started to wipe on content… all the Wrath of the LK “heroes” that still cannot down Ragnaros on heroic started to say, heroics are not worth it.
I experienced that myself when Ruby Sanctum came out. The hassle of explaining the fight and possibility for mayhem made it that I killed it once with a toon and that was it, I did not want to go there again. Heck I don’t even what to go there now. All the mechanics I hate are there… and they suck. People also forget why they hated ToC so much, and it is mostly that people just could not complete it on heroic because Anub, even now tiers later can still wipe a 25 man. Some people love mechanics, but its hard to find 10 or 25 people that are in love with learning mechanics and executing at 100% every single time. They make things not puggable.
I am excited that they are nerfing Firelands. I will get to see all the bosses, I might even be able to do some heroics and gear up for the final tier of this expansion. I am glad I did not leave the game altogether because I am getting excited about killing Deathwing.