Why I think the BRF item level upgrade is good (and wish they'd done it from the start of BRF)
There was a blue post yesterday on the forums from Bashiok saying that BRF items are going to go up by 5 ilvls.
The main purpose of this change is to ensure that killing new bosses in the Blackrock Foundry raid feels appropriately rewarding. We are finding that groups coming out of a couple of months in Highmaul could often have an average item level that was just barely shy of the loot dropped by the appropriate difficulty in Foundry. A core part of the experience of progressing through a new raid tier lies in the sense that even if you didn't manage to kill a particular boss this week, the upgrades your raid group gathered along the way will make things smoother and improve your chances the following week.
This change will be retroactive, affecting existing items that players may have in their possession. Thus, instead of an item level range of 650/665/680/695 for Raid Finder/Normal/Heroic/Mythic Foundry, the loot awarded will now be item level 655/670/685/700 respectively. At the same time, we will be increasing the item level of the new highest-tier crafted and Apexis vendor items by 5, in order to keep their power unchanged relative to the Foundry raid itemization.Watcher clarified Bashiok's post with a number of points
- Bashiok, 14 March 2015
..."tier" in the post - it's being used as a synonym for "zone"
I thought that may have been just a word substitution. Because if it really was a separate tier I should have reset EPGP. But we didn't.
Many players coming out of 2 months in Highmaul were in a situation of having to work to learn and defeat new bosses that dropped loot of roughly the same quality as what they already were wearing.
We thought that too. In fact even now I am still wearing my Highmaul stuff. We did think it was a bit funny that it wasn't much of an upgrade and most of our BRF stuff was being passed over because it wasn't much of an upgrade, and not even a sidegrade. Tier was all we were going for.
That isn't satisfying and doesn't allow for much power progression.
Sars once said that getting loot was one of the best parts of a boss kill. And it is certainly true - when you kill a boss and nobody takes loot you have that feeling of "Well, why did we bother killing THAT boss." We say that for Oregorger because nobody seems to take loot from it and it seems to be just a pain in the ass.
Then Watcher gave this example:
...Consider a guild that primarily does Normal mode content and eventually progresses into Heroic. This guild may have been 6/7N Highmaul by early January; they ventured into Heroic and killed 2-3 bosses there, and then went back and finished off Mar'gok on Normal. Along the way, they also got some item level 670 loot from garrison mission caches. Now, Foundry comes out. Just because this group killed a couple of Heroic Highmaul bosses after two months in the zone doesn't suddenly make them a Heroic guild - they will, appropriately, begin in Normal Foundry. But their average item level with mostly 655 items (some 661 warforged), and some 670 items from Heroic Highmaul, is likely around 661 or 662 as a raid group. And that simply doesn't leave much room for meaningful reward. And replacing a 670 non-set piece with a 665 set piece is likely a power upgrade, but also does not feel particularly satisfying.That is exactly what it was like for us. In fact, we didn't do normal BRF, and we still haven't, we went straight into heroic BRF because we had cleared heroic Highmaul and that seemed to be the natural progression. I think of all that sharded loot, and it makes me cry.
It still feels funny replacing my mythic Highmaul stuff with heroic Tier but I suspect that once these changes hit, I won't be using my Highmaul stuff anymore. I have only 6 items of BRF stuff that I use, when I'm in my "mana conservation" gear, but in my output gear, I am wearing 4 items of BRF stuff. Once these changes hit, I may be more inclined to use my BRF gear as standard.
Would it have changed the way we played and looted if they had implemented this as soon as BRF hit? I'm not sure to be honest. We have thought about how to address that issues with people not wanting to pay for minor upgrades (for example, an item drops but it's warforged or has a socket and people don't want to pay full price for that tiny upgrade and the item gets sharded. What we say now is that if someone has EXACTLY the same item, then they only need to pay the EPGP for the upgrade difference (say it's 500 for the item, but 540 for a socketted then if they take the item it would be only 40 GP instead of 540). However, that's only if the item is about to be sharded becuase nobody is going to use it. I think that it was a really clever change and I think of all the warforged stuff that I've DE'd... makes me sad.
I'm such a hoarder though - I have kept everything that I thought was half decent, and though I still think mythic Rune Enscribed Hood still has better stats than a Tier helm, I will definitely play around with both to see what it's like (I am using Chestguard of the Roaring Crowd when I use my Rune Enscribed Hood, and Tier chest for when I'm using Tier helm). But! I will gladly accept those free upgrades though because they are not to be sneezed at - I wonder if I'll notice a difference? I'm sure I will :) Aimei tells me my ilvl may go up by 2? We'll see! It will happen next week (though does that mean not this Tuesday but next Tuesday, because the post went up on a USA Sunday, and isn't that the beginning of the week??).