Is a Level Squish Inevitable?

The title of this post, is the title used on the Blizzard Watch article. I wrote a very long comment and so I thought I’d save it as a post because I think (if I do say so myself) that I made some good points.

I started playing in Wrath and I don’t know if it was the classic quests or what but I developed this hatred for questing and for levelling – my sole intent was getting that alt to max level. I was very focused on the goal and basically wanted the journey to be as fast as possible.

BUT after I took a 2.5 year break from the game I had an epiphany. All we’re basically doing in combat is hitting buttons to make stuff die. Buttons change order if we’re on different classes, surroundings change, mobs change but the basic game mechanics are the same at level 40 as they are at level 120. Sure, there are missing abilities and I feel that keenly sometimes when I reach for my interrupt button only to realise I don’t gain that skill until a future level.

However my point is I’m kinda playing devils advocate I guess and flipping the script as to what levelling is. The article makes is sound like a necessary evil to get to max level, however like I said we’re still hitting buttons whatever level we’re at so why not just enjoy the journey? I have a max level Alliance and a max level Horde – I’m gaining the rep, doing the world quests, the warfronts, the islands, the raids etc. I’m seeing the endgame. If I play a different class, I could be doing those same activities OR I could be enjoying a varied view by doing quests/dungeons etc. in another place.

What is the goal of playing another class? (again playing devils advocate here) isn’t it just to experience the act of playing another class? and the different playstyle it offers? Why then not just enjoy actually playing that class while levelling? The levels are cool – I seriously love the ding whoosh! But gaining levels is like a nice side-benefit to the real goal of just enjoying playing a new class/spec.

I think the fact that Warcraft is so old, and has so many expansions, is a massive strength because it provides a huge amount of content. We’re not limited to the endgame activities at 120 in Kul Tiras/Zandalar – it’s a big game and we can play in all of it.

To go back to the point, which is asking about a level squish. I guess basically what I’m saying is I don’t think it’s necessary/matters. We can play the game at any level. I think for people that do want to rush to max level they need to squish the experience requirement as they have a few times, so it doesn’t take any longer to get there than it did in the past.

Alternatively maybe it would be cool if they opened up the world more. They have a huge game world and they only actively send us into old parts of it on occasion (I loved doing that in the Legion class quests!) or there’s the Raiding with Leashes. They could do more. I guess what I mean is if they wanted to do a level squish they could still offer the varied view by expanding timewalking or something.

OR something just occurred to me – what if they did away with levelling altogether of ‘old’ content? All new characters start at 110. They could then introduce some new quest hubs which would offer players a chance to “experience the story of the Burning Legion” and that would open by Outland for people that hadn’t done it, or “experience the story of the Cataclysm” or “the story of the Lich King” – so people would be directed to all this content that they’ve made, it wouldn’t be wasted content. Alternatively for those players who have done it all, they could just be instantly at the current expansion and only have 10 levels to go through. That could be a way for everyone to win.