This whole 'more like WoW' mentality is misdirected. What is everyone's beef with making a game more intuitive, responsive and (as a result) fun to play?
It depends upon what one isolates as "WoW like." People who like the game prefer to focus only on very general, positive aspects -- intuitive UI, responsiveness, and "fun," apparently -- while those who are more critical of the product itself recognize bland quests, nearly brain-dead difficulty, and a simplistic world sharply delineated by simple progression mechanics.
Obviously it would not be a controversial issue if all "WoW-like" referred to was a few UI and latency improvements. The problem is that it doesn't. "WoW-like" would be a good thing if developers only took a handful of its best offerings. The problem is that they don't.
When people complain about something being more like WoW, they lament the fact that developers of many games copy far more than they should from the aging behemoth. These developers use no discretion but the simple fact that a given system appears in their source. Suddenly "quests" need to be one-click affairs demarcated by gigantic, floating arrows above the start and end point. All item management has to take place arbitrarily across five backpacks. Combat must involve constantly regenerating HP and MP, and must be carried out through quick, persistent macro rotations. And so on.
The disdain for games that are "more like WoW" is understandable. The game itself, by virtue of its unprecedented success, has nearly stagnated the industry and curtailed variation at its very root as companies struggle desperately to duplicate it. This is not the fault of WoW, of course, but those who look blindly towards it. It has become a crutch for creativity, a wobbly, mass-produced wireframe over which misdirected games are continuously built. The level of "inspiration" developers should
take from WoW is minor but effective; the level they do
take is massive and unnecessary. Edited, Nov 3rd 2012 1:45pm by KaneKitty