The enjoyment of watching the RWF and how to make it better

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WoW Community Council
#1 - Dec. 11, 2021, 1:46 p.m.
Blizzard Post

One of the things I look forward to the most at the start of a new patch, since it’s real birth in BFA, is watching the Race to World First.
Guilds like Echo, Limit, Method, Pieces, Fat Shark Yes, and many, many more all tearing through the mythic raid at a pace no one else can. Showcasing their expertise of their class and working as a cohesive unit to kill bosses as quickly as possible, and broadcast in many ways.

It just never gets old to me.

One of the coolest things to watch is the adaptation. For example, in the most recent race to world first, Echo discovered (at the enrage timer) that Sylvanas did not in fact die at 50% like she does on LFR, Normal, and Heroic. It was assumed that she would then die at 45%, which ended up being the case.

But Echo somehow managed to, over the course of many pulls and planning, squeak out an additional 5% damage on Sylvanas in the same amount of time as they had barely crossed the 50% threshold. There is no other word for it than Amazing.

One thing I think we can also agree on from this most recent race is that a number of the bosses (Guardian, KT for example) were big letdowns. We expected Guardian to be the new Sludgefist, which people like Limit Max have already expressed was one of the most perfectly tuned bosses ever, and instead it just kinda fell over.

On the flip side, Painsmith Raznal was the second best example of adaptation we saw in the raid. An intermission spike row with no gaps?! What!? Amazing.

It just never gets old to me.

So. Going forward.
The repetitive theme here is the adaptation. A lot of the new mythic mechanics are known well in advance to the Race due to mythic testing and the dungeon journal.

While I would love to see mythic testing stop, I know it won’t ever happen.
But, would it really be such a bad thing to keep the Mythic Dungeon Journal locked until after the race? Or open it until X number of guilds kill the Mythic encounter? This is something that won’t affect you or me in the game, but would make the enjoyment of watching the RWF even greater.

I know I’m not the only one who thinks this. Here are GMs of the guild who have won the majority of the races saying most of the same things! Lets make the race that much more exciting !

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Lead Encounter Designer
#6 - March 8, 2022, 1:12 a.m.
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Hey, remember this thread? We do! A new raid is an effort that spans months of work for us, so we often capture feedback like this earlier in the process, and then later we can see how some of your feedback had a positive impact.

I think it goes without saying, but I’ll say anyway that the Race for World First is a super exciting time for our team as well. When we were still in the office pre-pandemic, we had a big TV on the wall where we’d have streams going so we could watch and share in the fun (and occasionally panic when something weird happened). These days we watch on a group call, but the excitement is just as real and we’re very much looking forward to this next race.

To address the main point here (saving more surprises for race day), I’ll start by stating the obvious: there are upsides to testing things on the PTR and good historical reasons for doing so. We want players to have the best experience possible, and PTR testing allows us to cast a wider net for both bugs and feedback. That being said, the points brought up here are also valid - it really is cool to have surprises after the race begins, and this is a big reason why we’ve traditionally avoided testing the Mythic version of the final boss.

In light of player feedback and given the structure of Sepulcher, we saw an opportunity to try an experiment and take this concept a bit further by skipping PTR tests for the final 3 bosses entirely. Doing this isn’t without risk, but we want to see how it plays out. It’s genuinely cool that nobody will have fought these 3 bosses before tomorrow, and that even with the dungeon journal they don’t quite know what to expect.

The honest answer is that for as much work as that would entail, the dungeon journal doesn’t really give away the most important details of a fight. It might tell you that Painsmith has Spikes and that Spikes will kill you, but it won’t tell you what the patterns are, how often they come, or how to deal with them. Nobody knew there was a gapless row of Spikes until guilds actually got in there.

Of course, we’re always open to feedback on the dungeon journal and ways it could be better, and I don’t want to close the door on further changes to how we do things in the future.

We’re looking forward to an exciting race and we wish the best of luck to all competitors. It’s sure to be full of memorable moments and we’ll doubtless learn things that will help us make better raids in the future. Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts!