When Vaults of Zskera was announced for WoW Patch 10.0.7, many players were looking forward to a spiritual successor to other solo scenarios such as the Withered Army or the Thunder King’s Treasury. Get in once a week and keep getting better and better. Or in the case of the Vault, advance further and further into the chambers.
Instead, the new feature is already uninteresting for most players in the second ID. The reason is simple: you have already captured all the relevant rewards and usually solved all the puzzles. And this despite the fact that there are a total of 29 locked chambers in the vault of Zskera. Because instead of fighting our way bit by bit, we get the necessary keys thrown after us on the Forbidden Island. This is a really cool feature extremely devalued.
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The dilemma between Timegate and Player Power
The developers found themselves in a quandary when they decided to pair the Vaults of Zskera with the Primeval Stones and Onyx Socket Ring. On the one hand, they would certainly like the players to have fun solving the various puzzles in the vault for a long time. On the other hand, they don’t want to hide the newly won player power behind a “timegate” through the ring.
The Primeval Stones are important for all WoW players. Source: Buffed The latter would certainly have caused some resentment in the community. Especially since the developers’ plan is that we will replace the ring again in patch 10.1. So a week-long procedure to get the ring and upgrade it would certainly not have gone down well.
On the other hand, giving the players so quick and easy access to all the stones means, conversely, that the vault of Zskera also has to open all of its chambers quickly. Because that’s where the stones are hidden.
29 keys – and done
Therefore, the developers have decided to hide the necessary keys in almost all rare mobs and in all treasure chests on the Forbidden Island. Since they are also account-bound, you can also send them back and forth between your characters. Getting 29 keys to open all chambers has been a breeze for most players in the first ID. Apart from the fact that far fewer chambers are enough to get to the most important stones and the necessary upgrades.
A total of 29 chambers are waiting to be opened. Source: Blizzard
In order to keep the vault up-to-date in the following weeks, the devs have decided on a random structure in which not all rooms are available in all IDs. However, anyone who was already in the vault in the second ID, or who opened the chambers with twinks last week, had to realize that the changes were very reasonable. Occasionally a chamber that did not exist before, but the vast majority of chambers remained the same.
It doesn’t help much that we have to open a chamber for the weekly reputation quest and instead of spiders, slime monsters are now wandering around. The replay value of the feature is already minimal in week two and should quickly tend towards zero. The Treasury of the Thunder King or the Withered scenario did a much better job of that.
Many mechanics from old world quests can be found in the vault of Zskera. Source: buffed
A little more every week
The term timegating is frowned upon among WoW players because everyone always wants to have everything immediately. In the case of such a scenario, I would have felt it much better if, for example, the number of keys had been more limited or the vault had only gotten the individual levels gradually.
A new puzzle or two and new rewards every week would have motivated me a lot more than running through everything once. For the right long-term motivation, the puzzles should have been much more complicated. Experienced WoW eyes can recognize most tasks in their sleep and only on a few occasions does it need help.
Of course, more complex puzzles would have meant more development effort. But good features don’t develop by themselves. The vault, on the other hand, looks like a collection of mini-puzzles, all of which could come from any quest and are neither challenging nor spectacular.
Abandoned feature … unfortunately
All of this is really a shame. Because there is so much potential in the Zskera vault. For example, the puzzles there could have been linked much more with the rest of the world, which has only been done in a few places. Even very complex puzzles, such as those often used for special mounts, could have been accommodated here. From secret rooms to more levels to smaller bosses that need to be defeated. The possibilities are endless. Or better: would have been endless.
There is hardly any synergy between the vault and the rest of the world. Source: buffed Because a revision of the Zskera vault is quite unlikely. There remains a feature that will be completely forgotten in two weeks at the latest and where at most one or the other twink will run in to get the primeval stones. Of course Treasury or Withered were also patch features, but back then they were interesting for many weeks and weren’t burned away in a week or two of a mini interim patch. It stays as it is: the vault of Zskera could have been a really cool feature. However, it has become just a feature.
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