1:55PM Hard modes get iterated a lot because they're difficult to test.
1:54PM How extensive is your raid testing, and did anybody internally kill Yogg+0 pre-nerf? Daelo: Encounter team is 5-people, but we bring in other leads and raiders on staff for the 10-man. It's hard to get 25 developers together, but QA does those. "It's pretty much impossible for 25 people on QA to reach the skill level of a good raid. They didn't beat Yogg+0, they got spanked pretty hard by Yogg+4."
Yeah. Internally, they don't even put together a 25-man raid good enough to clear Ulduar.
My favorite part?
"Encounter team is 5-people"
Our millions of $ at work. Considering how many people play WoW, these 5 better be paid like pro athletes and worth every cent.
"It's hard to get 25 developers together"
Gives you a good idea of how big their dev team is.
Don't get me wrong: the game is still worth paying for. But it could be so much better if they'd loosen the belt a notch and hire a few more people. And there's really no excuse. The content patches are part of the promise they make us when we pay the game. If they weren't doing these "free" patches, we wouldn't keep paying the $15, period. So now it's just a matter of the patch frequency and size. Both can afford to increase, given the amount of money we pay Blizzard all told.
I'll get into my Cataclysm impressions soon, but I do want to temper this post with the admission that I'm impressed with the promises they made for the xpac, and am hoping that the execution bears out my current suspicion that content is sparse right now because overhauling Azeroth is such a large undertaking. Please let me be right. Blizzard is burning through my customer goodwill at an alarming rate.
Champions and Aion, HOOOOO!