WoW Armory Facebook App – Why?

Whilst waiting for the World of Warcraft patch 3.3 to download a few days ago, I decided to try out the Armory Facebook app seeing as Blizzard were pushing it through the game loader. The installation was, as you would expect, quick and painless and within a couple of minutes I had hooked up Facebook account with my Battle.net account WoW Armory feed. My WoW account is now ubiquitous. Awwwsommmeeeee (!).

Yep, that was sarcasm.

Behold, my glory! (As if you care.)

Behold, my glory! (As if you care.)

As the title of this post probably gives away, I’m kinda baffled by this Facebook application. I mean, I can see Blizzard’s reasons for developing it; they have a shiny new feed of every player’s activity ready to be abused and the more they can get people to chat, spam and spread the word of Warcraft (clever pun there), the more free marketing they can receive. “What’s that, Billy? You equipped a tabard in an online computer game? I must subscribe to this and find out what all of the fuss is about!”

I’m not dissing Blizzard’s ability to make funky little web do-das and pieces of jiggery-pokery (I actually really like their 3D character viewer), I’m just questioning the actual need of something like a Facebook application. Do we honestly need to share every single micro-accomplishment in our hobbies with everyone we’ve ever met in every web service we’ve ever used?

Trust me, when I take down the Lich King, you’ll all hear about it (whether you like it or not) and I’ll do it the good old fashioned way – by tell telling people. Until then, I don’t need to integrate my WoW account with my Twitter account with my Facebook account with my OpenID account with my Flickr Account all just so I can broadcast to the cyber world every time I gain a level in a video game. It’s social networking gone mad.

P.S. If you want to follow me on Facebook, feel free. Occasionally I say something amusing but most of the time I’ll just ignore you.

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16 Comments

  1. Sharon says:

    Yeah, I didn’t quite understand the point of the app either. It appears to exist solely to spam your friends with your accomplishments in game. I turned all that off, and found that the app really offers nothing else, unless I’m missing some big key element of its functionality.

    My WoW-playing Facebook friends use another app called Hearthstone, that lets us see what each other is up to in game without spamming everyone else in our friends’ lists.

    Maybe if the official app let us manage our auction house activities, it would be worthwhile?

  2. Longasc says:

    Achievement spam. Worse than Farmville and Evony?

  3. Carson says:

    “I’m just questioning the actual need of something like a Facebook application”

    Well, to be fair, most people question the actual need of something like Facebook, when they stop an think about it for a minute.

    • Gordon says:

      Indeed. We could pretty much question the need for any of this stuff – Facebook, twitter, blogs. I actually do quite a lot and since I started blogging, I feel overwhelmed by it all sometimes and just want to escape.

  4. Cuppycake says:

    You must not spend much time on Facebook playing games. Sharing your achievements and accomplishments in Facebook games is how they grow virally. Have you not seen the Facebook apps that do something but tell everyone any time you run 2 miles? Or tell your friends about your XBox Live achievements? Or tell all of your friends whenever you rent a movie on Netflix? Or when you make an Amazon purchase? Or when you comment on CNN.com?

    Facebook is all about life aggregation and making sure your friends know what you’re doing and allowing you to share what you want to share with them. This is the most current and logical thing that Blizzard has done in a long time.

    It just shows how little traditional MMO players are in tune with current trends in social media and social gaming when no one understands this. Facebook game players have been wanting this for a LONG time. 10 million players is a small number compared to the amount of people gaming on FB.

    • Gordon says:

      It’s true, I don’t actually play any Facebook games. Don’t get me wrong, I can totally understand why Blizzard want this. The more they can get people to talk about WoW, the more success the game will have and the more money they will make. It makes perfect sense for Blizzard.

      What I don’t get though is why we, the users, would want it. I really don’t need to tell everyone on my Facebook list everytime I complete a micro-achievement in WoW and I’m sure they don’t care and don’t want to spammed with it.

      Yep, I’m one of those guys who hates getting notifications on Facebook that someone has done something utterly random and meaningless in Mafia Wars. Ugh! :D

  5. kaozz says:

    I really wasn’t impressed with the application either. I’m waiting on Cataclysm and this is what they are getting out to me? I would rather time spent on things within the game.

  6. Rhii says:

    Eurgh, I hate Facebook already. It’s turned into the kind of three ring circus where if I don’t look on Facebook, I don’t get told when family members go in for major surgery, etc.

    “But it was on Facebook!”

    I’m tired of impersonal broadcasts defining my contacts with friends and family. If I want to tell you about my activities, in game or out, I’ll tell you directly, and not with some automated service that takes the personal out of personal communication.

  7. xabbott says:

    How original, another post questioning why we need social networks and integrations of said networks in to various online/offline activity.

    But a Blog is *totally* normal and understandable. ::sigh::

    • Gordon says:

      I’m not completely immune to the irony, trust me :) However, there’s a big difference in my mind. A blog should deliver interesting opinions that the writer has carefully crafted and written, it’s not an automated feed just spamming pointless micro-achievements of someone’s online adventures.

      Let’s use a metaphor: I like having conversations about MMORPGs with my friends but I hate getting automated text messages from people I barely know telling me that they’ve gained a level in a video game.

  8. Wolfshead says:

    This is just another fad. Please wake me up when it’s over and by then they’ll be another new fad/bandwagon that everyone will be jumping on.

    I’m sure glad Blizzard has the resources to develop Facebook, Iphone apps, beer steins, lunch boxes and Blizzard Happy Meals instead of putting the time into WoW to make it more immersive and fixing bugs.

    • Gordon says:

      It’s their marketing wheels in motion, no doubt. Kudos to Blizzard because I’m sure it help give WoW exposure and more success. However, it’s definitely a case of a company driving a product rather than do what the users want.

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