It’s a struggle for WoW Mythic+ group fans, as rage quitters and long wait times plague the mode. What’s the solution? Let’s take a look.

"Hurry up and wait" might as well be the slogan of World of Warcraft players. So much of the game is predicated on hoping you're picked in a hurry, all to wait for a thing to start. It's like a school gym class picking teams for dodgeball in the digital age. And so was my experience this week as I waited for a WoW Mythic+ group as a DPS. However, on the plus side I got to hear all about our Mage's plan to become a sci-fi writer during that hour-long wait.

So, that's nice.

Right at the 60 minute wait mark our group found a tank and healer for a +13 Ruby Life Pools key. Attempting to grind my 1200+ Mythic score up higher I was feeling good about this group. Then, disaster struck almost immediately. Our healer got one-shotted by the first monster in the dungeon. Splat. Dead.

The healer rage quit immediately, just like that. An hour wasted. Food for the party and buffs, useless in an instant. I went to bed, annoyed and wishing this wasn't so common an occurrence. I hope that Mage finishes his novel, but I guess I'll never find out.

Blizzard has a Mythic+ problem and it needs a solution, sooner rather than later.

WoW Mythic+ groups: An exercise in futility

World of Warcraft has always been a game where your fun hinges on the kindness of strangers. For almost two decades now I've grouped up, waited patiently in a line for mobs to respawn, and sat in raids while we searched for healers. So much of the game is based around hoping that one thing going wrong doesn't set someone off and delay your ability to play the video game.

This is no more true or prevalent than in WoW Mythic+ dungeon groups. Excluded from the Looking For Group auto-group mechanic, Mythic parties must be formed manually. Now, if you're in a guild or group for Mythic then this is no sweat.

However, the large majority of players attempting to do the extreme, endgame content find themselves at the mercy of the crowd.

It just comes along with the territory of doing Mythic+ that you're going to wait. And wait. Then wait some more. A player from a Mythic group I was in just last night joked that the real game and challenge is finding a tank and healer. They weren't wrong. However, just as big of a challenge is the act of making sure cooler heads prevail and that a single error during your run doesn't sink the whole group and waste everyone's time.

While the latter is more about human nature, the former is a tale as old as time when it comes to competitive gaming.

The holy trinity

Most games hang from that most precarious of precipices, the three roles almost all modern team games balance upon. Tank, healer, damage. Much like how all modern cooking hinges on the holy trinity of onion, carrot, and celery, so too does World of Warcraft rely on this triumvirate. In many ways this is also an economics problem in that we're talking about supply and demand.

Too many DPS, not enough tanks or healers. The WoW Mythic+ group problem in a nutshell.

This is a problem that Blizzard's other big game Overwatch 2 is at constant odds over. How to you incentivize players to take on the two most challenging but required roles? After all, the average player just wants to turn their brain off, go pew-pew, and call it a day. And much like how you can't run a Hardees or Tudor's Biscuit World without someone getting to the restaurant at four a.m. to make biscuits, you can't play without a tank or healer.

Sorry about all the food references. I'm hungry.

Overwatch attempts to tempt players into queing for these roles with monetary gain. They've done everything from giving loot boxes and large XP boosts to players who queue up for these roles, with moderate success. Blizzard even employs this tactic in its Looking For Group and Raid feature, offering goodie bags filled with gold and consumables to help ease wait times.

But that's not a solution that helps Mythic+. Fact of the matter, the mode needs a higher incentive for players willing to babysit and take on the tank and healer roles for groups. Part of this is because the average player doesn't see the difficulty of Mythic dungeons worth the effort or reward. After all, if you're just in it for loot then Looking For Raid and normal difficulty raids are more than fine.

There's got to be something more to get players into Mythic.

Prizes for one and all

We live in a battle pass world, whether you like it or not. No game is immune to the siren song of grinding out rewards over a long period of time. Even World of Warcraft has somewhat succumbed to this idea with the Trading Post and its Traveler's Log of rewards.

It's high time that each season of Mythic+ also had a battle pass-like rewards track. Fact of the matter is, there just isn't much gain for all the work that goes into WoW Mythic+ groups. Sure, if you hit that magic number of 2400 then you can unlock a rare and limited time mount. And that comes along with a bit of gloating, in that not many people will get said mount. But, that's not a large motivating factor.

If Blizzard wants to get more players involved in Mythic+ then there needs to be larger incentives. A content track like the battle passes found in Hearthstone would be perfect. From unique transmogs and items to maybe even it's own tier-set, a Mythic battle pass would give more players a reason to trudge through the Mythic muck. And better yet, you can help encourage tanks and healers by giving them XP or reward bonuses for the season.

But all the rewards in the world don't fix bad behavior, and that leads us to the other problem in Mythic: Wasted time and rage quitting.

Some kind of monster

It feels like all WoW Mythic+ groups are hanging on by a thread. One minute everyone is happy and joking. The DPS numbers are big and everything is great. Then, one thing goes wrong, the group wipes, and it feels like a countdown timer has started. Inevitably, something goes wrong enough that someone leaves and it puts the entire group out into the cold.

It's honestly one of the worst feelings in World of Warcraft--that dread when something happens that you just know is going to lead to a fight. Which then leads to another fight. And then someone quits and everyone just kind of silently hearths away.

And I'm not sure what's the best solution for a problem that boils down to people being people. Games with ranked, competitive modes such as Overwatch 2 have similar issues without real solutions. Yes, many games will dock the player points and ban them from requeuing after rage quitting enough, but is that a solution?

Some folks would say no. It's a subjective matter, but it might be time for Blizzard to hit Mythic+ leaves where it hurts most: Their season score. It doesn't help that the World of Warcraft player reporting system doesn't even have an option for gameplay sabotage or abusive actions via quitting. However, the larger point is that the spectre of losing season points might be enough to make players think before they quit.

It's better than nothing, which is what WoW currently does.

The future of Mythic+

We seem to be in a new era for Blizzard and World of Warcraft. Never before has the development team been so open and communicative with the player base. Likewise, we're seeing new content and updates come at a rate never before seen in the game's history.

I have to believe that Blizzard knows that WoW Mythic+ groups are frustrated at the moment. For now, I'm willing to place my faith in the team and hope they address these issues as Dragonflight rolls on through 2023. However, doing nothing at all may just end as a sign that the more things change the more they stay the same.

For the sake of Mythic+, let's hope not.

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