I took this pic just last night as we were getting ready for the “Faction Fight” in ToC 25. It’s my most hated encounter in all of World of Warcraft.
My guildmaster “confessed” (in quotes because she was hesitant to say it out loud, she said) that she liked this encounter because it’s unscripted. I agree that unscripted encounters would be preferable to scripted ones and I look forward to the day when all our encounters have at least something happen that’s unpredictable—when things like Deadly Boss Mods simply don’t work and we all have to pay attention to what’s going on on screen. But what sullies this encounter in particular are these factors:
- No other encounter causes as much grief among the people who undergo it. I would say 50% of the time I’m in it there’s an argument about what to do.
- I’ve never been in it when it didn’t cause three or more wipes. That’s too many for any encounter that’s already known to you (even unscripted though it is).
- It has the longest preparation of any encounter, bar none. This is related to the first point, but I’ve never been in a situation where it has taken less than 10 or 15 minutes to get ready for this single encounter even if the same strategy is going to be tried again with only a few tweaks. If it was the last encounter in the dungeon that would be one thing—but it’s not. It’s only in the middle.
All of these things tell me that the design for this encounter is far out of proportion to the reward in gear or significance in lore of it. I would favor either eliminating it (not a great choice since it’s an unscripted encounter which makes it valuable) or simply reducing the amount of hit points each of the monsters have. Reduced hit points would make things much better and still preserve the encounter’s unscripted nature.