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Grind: None Of It, but What Is It?


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#1 StormDragonZ


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 05:29 AM

What is grinding exactly?

I'm asking this simply because grind to someone people is casual to others. If ANet indeed wants to do away with the "need" of grinding, then I think we should discuss what exactly "Grind" is among the various people who intend to play this game.

So go ahead. In your opinion, what is grind and what is not grind?
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#2 Salidin


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 05:38 AM

Having to do something boring repeatably to get reward = grind.

Optional time sink = your choice so not grind.
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#3 BlueBird


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 05:41 AM

Grind is a "dance" that people do, especially girls shaking their booties near male crotches. And I did none of that in beta. :(
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#4 Mitobunny


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 05:52 AM

I'll just use many asian mmos as an example:

There's like 1 mob for every 10 levels that you kill repeatedly, usually it's really boring because it takes weeks to get those 10 levels. In WoW you get to lvl 85 in a week if you try hard. In <insert any asian mmo> you'll get to lvl 85 in a year. I'm hardly exaggerating either, a good example would be MapleStory before they changed the exp rates. Most mmos have a grind but they're not literally the same action repeated for hours on end. So while you may quest in WoW and kill tons of mobs the same way, they are presented to you in a different manner rather than simply killing boars until lvl 85.
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#5 SpyderArachnid


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 05:59 AM

Grind usually means, when you run out of quests/missions whatever in a hub, and you aren't high enough level for the next hub, you have to kill mobs over and over to level up just to get the next set of quests.

As well, it means having to do the same thing over and over and over etc. Like kill x amount of x. Next quest, kill x amount of x. And so on and so on. When you are constantly repeating the same thing over and over, it is considered grinding.

F2P MMOs force a ton of grind upon you to keep you playing. Then offer stuff in the cash shop to reduce that grind drastically, so you'll spend money. Usually P2W stuff or boosters that increase your xp gain extremely so you aren't spending months trying to get a level. It's their way of pushing their cash shop on you.

But basically, grind is being forced to do the same thing repeatedly to progress. If it was voluntary, it would be farming. But if you are forced to do it to get further in the game, it is grinding.
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#6 Ardeni


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 06:01 AM

To me grinding is doing something repeating it many, many times over and over again to reach a goal in a MMO game. The goal can be gaining wealth, experience or upgrading your crafting level. Usually grinding is boring (but not everything that is boring is grinding) since most people get bored by repetitive activities. Grinding is common in many Asian MMOs where you don't have enough quests to gain levels and thus you're forced to kill monsters, usually in a small area, to get to the next level.

I'd say that the most extreme grinding game that I've played is Silkroad online, where you not only had to grind for your experience but also for skill points, which slowed your progress down.
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#7 grey_foxx082


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 06:03 AM

Example of grind. Asian MMO I used to play..

There's this guy, level 60, keeps beating me in PvP, because of level difference. I want to beat him. Okay so I go leveling up, and fight this one mob, there are other mobs, but this one is the best for grinding, hits a bit hard, but dies fast. I fight this mob for a whole day, pull groups of them and AoE them fast for optimal grinding. End of the day, my exp bar increases by 1%, cool 99% more to go til next level.

Next day, I proceed to kill the same mobs again, spamming AoE while talking with friends on guild chat. LAG SPIKE! I get killed by the mob I'm AoEing, -5% exp, god damn.. I leveled down, I'm level 49 now with 96% exp... gosh, I need 4 days to get my 4% back and get to 50...

Edited by grey_foxx082, 10 May 2012 - 06:03 AM.

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#8 Snies


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 06:07 AM

Well, the dictionary says "n: laborious, usually uninteresting work", which I think pretty much sums it up. My understanding is that grinding is when you're aware that you're doing something repetitively to earn XP, gold or items, and you're not deriving a lot of enjoyment out of the process. Grinding isn't so much that your objective is taking forever, it's more that you're repeating the same actions ad nausuem to try and get there, and you're consciously aware of how much it's boring your brains out.
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#9 Ibari


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 06:11 AM

Grinding is what I did for a year in a MMO called Ragnarök Online.

I used to play as a class called Biochemist. It sounded cool 'cause it was some kinda Alchemist with a pet (an Homunculus) that threw bombs and used potions. I didn't know where I was getting into.

Ok, to make the best build for your Biochemist (since the game didn't allow for many effective builds to exist) you needed to use those bombs. But how did you make them?

Perhaps you'll understand now:

- You picked up materials for almost an entire week, with another of your characters (since, stat-wise, your Biochemist wasn't really a good melee-fighter). I don't now, if a single bomb required 2 of X, 1 of Y and 3 of Z, that means you need to kill almost 6,000 monsters.

- Using a skill you convert those materials to bombs, but you CAN FAIL during the process and you lose the materials! The success rate was influenced by your character's stats (and oh, surprise, the Bomber-Biochemist had opposed stats!). So you were somehow forced to make a new character with those stats to create the explosives, being impossible to reach 100% success.

- After you finally made the bombs, (probably 600 out of 1000) then each attack for your character consumed 2 bombs.

- Use all your bombs in PvP or PvE (you realize that's only 300 attacks, right?) and that's it. Usually the week of gathering was consumed in one of two days. Rinse and repeat.

This didn't feel like a game. It was like a job. If this isn't grinding, I don't know what to call it.

Edited by Ibari, 10 May 2012 - 06:14 AM.

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#10 Leyana


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 06:19 AM

Grind is an arbitrary barrier of repetitive tasks that you have to do in order to proceed with your goals. It is what you do in the game when you are no longer having fun, but have to do in order to continue having fun. Part of the reason why 'it gets better later' is a poor reason when discussing the merits of the game.

1. You want that amazing sword but you have to gather X amount of gold/resources to get it. It is grind if you find the accumulation of wealth boring and unfun. Some people might find the act of gaming the markets to get that gold fun.
2. You need to reach X level to explore/enter a certain area or even to advance through the story. If your purpose playing the game is to do either, the level barrier forces you to engage in leveling to continue.

Which is why, in my opinion, things like context and motivation are important. If developers disguise certain activities well enough, player will not feel the grind even though the underlying mechanics are still the same.
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#11 Airmid


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 06:22 AM

Unless the good people of ANet increase the number of mobs that drop hides, I think I'm in for a grind anyway to get my hands on leather. In fact, I already did some grinding in the first beta weekend to be able to make me a set of bags.

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#12 krone6


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 06:48 AM

Unless the good people of ANet increase the number of mobs that drop hides, I think I'm in for a grind anyway to get my hands on leather. In fact, I already did some grinding in the first beta weekend to be able to make me a set of bags.


It'll be changed i bet. Many things are being tweaked here and there at this stage.
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#13 Waar Kijk Je Naar

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Posted 10 May 2012 - 06:51 AM

"Please help me, these zombies are attacking my precious cows, but I'm baking a cake in my oven so I cannot get rid of them. Killing 200 should scare them away."

"Oh, you want this armor? I can craft you a set for free, but you'll have to get me some materials. Come back if you have some MegaDoomLaserRobotChicken-tokens. Apparently they're very rare, but it's rumored that the DoomLaserChickenMegaRobot has them. About 40 should be enough." <drop rate of 0,2% in a 2-hour dungeon>
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#14 98percentcute


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 06:59 AM

As the devs would say:
"It's waiting to have fun"

It's basically how long it takes before your character is considered powerful.
In GW2 there were people already half way to max level during the 2 day beta weekend.

Also if you think about it, and/or plan for it, you only need to get three utility skills, a heal (which may or may not be your default one) and an elite.

You can buy whatever weapon you want for cheap so you don't need to worry about that.
Try doing the same thing in any other MMO - that is, getting halfway to max level, having the best equipment statistically, and having all the skills you want in 2 days.
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#15 Soren Endon

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Posted 10 May 2012 - 07:00 AM

this old flash fits perfectly, saw this a long time ago and this thread brought to mind

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#16 Sprinkles169


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 07:05 AM

To me, grind is one of those 'bad' words. Like, if you tell me your grinding something in an mmo, it means your not enjoying what you're doing. If I'm making some kind of number go up in some kind of game by doing an either repetetive or predictable task. I consider myself to be grinding. I've seen the term tossed around all sorts of ways. Sometimes people say they have/had to 'grind' IP to earn a new champion in LoL. Which is not really an mmo or rpg at all. I don't see how you would see that as grinding because it is competetive and you get more reward for applying yourself and winning. If they look at it that way, I just hope I'm never stuck on their team.

Edited by Sprinkles169, 10 May 2012 - 07:05 AM.

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#17 Nerel


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 08:10 AM

Unless the good people of ANet increase the number of mobs that drop hides,  I think I'm in for a grind anyway to get my hands on leather. In fact, I already did some grinding in the first beta weekend to be able to make me a set of bags.


A fair amount of leather was obtainable from salvaging (medium armors), I managed to craft multiple sets of armor and a full set of five slot bage, then a full set of eight slot bags for my character's storage needs, and this was on a single weekend that I spent most of my time actually exploring and playing DEs, not farming and crafting. Not sure if it was all that scarce.
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#18 celticwar17


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 09:27 AM

Grinding is doing one thing over and over again for a very long period of time for the only reason is to obtain a different goal to where the actual actions of the grind is meaningless, but the goal is not.

-like killing one mob over and over again in order to level.
-Like having to do a dungeon 100X in order to gain enough reputation for some item
-Doing one gathering quest over and over again to gain reputation to gain some item.
-Joining a battleground over and over again for the sole reason of getting enough honor points to get armor or rank.

and when I mean over and over again... I mean like potentially over a thousand times to even tens of thousands of times in many cases.

Edited by celticwar17, 10 May 2012 - 09:34 AM.

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#19 Brayzz


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 09:46 AM

Grinding yea, for me it means you have no fun doing things over over and over "WHILE not having fun", but the question is why are you doing it? :D Than stop playing/doing it?

Edited by Brayzz, 10 May 2012 - 09:47 AM.

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#20 Imaginos


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 09:50 AM

Unless the good people of ANet increase the number of mobs that drop hides, I think I'm in for a grind anyway to get my hands on leather. In fact, I already did some grinding in the first beta weekend to be able to make me a set of bags.


Centaurs & Bandits. Drop materials that salvage into leather quite often. I had around 100 processed leathers in my bank after making bags and stuff.


Doing a repetitive / boring task (killing foes, doing a single trade combine, etc...) to obtain a goal (new experience level, new title, etc..). Grinding for loot is called farming. Grinding is not fun.

Oh you want to max your deldrimor title. Go kill 10 billion snowmen over and over and over and over at the start of the secret lair until you hit rank 10.

Grinding yea, for me it means you have no fun doing things over over and over "WHILE not having fun", but the question is why are you doing it? :D Than stop playing/doing it?

people do it because its the only way or easiest way to obtain whatever goal they're after.
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#21 Samcrow


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 12:42 PM

Imho, grinding is fine if it's optional - a lot of people like to grind, just look at people in gw1 that spent the vast majority of time grinding titles and points for said titles. Grinding hasn't been done away with entirely - there still needs to be long term (or very long term) goals for people to look to, but in this case it'll be in the form of optional activities.

What I'm not ok with is being forced to grind constantly to progress the game, aka leveling in 99% of mmo's. Having to grind through levels to get to "end game" (which is where most of the good content is in most mmo's) is a horrible system imo - especially prevalent in f2p games that have very high level caps (lvl 150+).

gw2 seems to have almost done away with the leveling grind due to the flat exp curve which is great, but they also left in titles, chievs and other mechanics so that people who enjoy grinding can do just that and not feel like they're being forced to do it to progress through the game. Gold star for ANet :)
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#22 Jaehan


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 01:24 PM

I was grinding that blood for Crafting for a while during the BWE -- except it didn't feel like grinding, to me. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Just a matter of personal perspective.
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#23 Tregarde


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 01:41 PM

Another example of "the grind" I see missing here is - the gear grind.

What that means is - doing dungeons (usually a specific dungeon) over and over again, in order to kill a certain boss, for a 1% chance that a specific item for your character drops as loot.

All of that so that.... you can move on to a more difficult dungeon (because you couldn't survive in your old gear), so that you can kill the boss there, for even better loot drops...

Yeah. I'm rather sick of that game mechanic. What really irks me about it, is the necessity for it in other games (you want to do difficult content, you need the gear, you don't have powerful enough gear, you won't survive) and the randomness - you can do a dungeon over and over and there's no guarantee of reward, it's purely random.

At least in GW2 that sort of grind won't be necessary. And what grind there is, is done right! I may need to do a dungeon several times over for an armour set, but each time I do that dungeon I am guaranteed to earn a token so that I can chose an exact item I want. And that item isn't necessary for me to play the game, it's just for appearance.
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#24 LethalConcept


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 01:45 PM

I would considering doing Spvp for glory being grinding, but however its not repetitive and boring because each Spvp match is different, therefore giving a different situation and well pvp in general is fun!
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#25 Red_Falcon


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 03:02 PM

I don't mind the grind if it's optional and not a requirement to be viable in PvP.
I.e. in GW I grinded FoW armor but I didn't actually need it to play endgame.
I could get a couple ectos then go do some HA.

In the typical MMO you need to grind hours/days for gear that allows you to simply access another gear grind, that allows you to access another gear grind and then maybe you can PvP, but only if you rolled a purple sword and you were lucky the hunter didn't "need" on the roll.
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#26 Silvernis


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 04:21 PM

Grind usually means, when you run out of quests/missions whatever in a hub, and you aren't high enough level for the next hub, you have to kill mobs over and over to level up just to get the next set of quests.

This is usually the first thing I think of. I have depressing memories of grinding out level after level in F2P games because the actual quests that gave semi-decent exp. pretty much dried up at the higher levels.
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#27 Tallenn


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Posted 10 May 2012 - 07:35 PM

Grinding is doing something usually repetitive and tedious, that when you're finished with it will get you what you really want. In other words, doing "work" to get to "fun".
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#28 Castegyre


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Posted 11 May 2012 - 03:54 AM

In regards to the standard MMO, it's all a 'grind'. Almost all of it is some variation on the same tasks. The difference is in how the devs dress up the repetitive activities to distract the player from the fact that they're being strung along on one treadmill or another to achieve goals. When the devs stop distracting the players by dressing up the 'grind' is when the players start feeling like the repetitive tasks they are doing to accomplish something is 'grinding'.
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#29 draxynnic



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Posted 11 May 2012 - 04:22 AM

I generally define grind in a game as when you're doing something you wouldn't otherwise do in order to build something up that you need to do something you do want to do.

How long you spend doing that is just a matter of how much grind - and tolerance levels vary. Some people say that an hour isn't grind, but it is - it's just an amount of grind that is below a lot of people's tolerance thresholds. Such thresholds vary - some people can put up with a lot of it just so they can have the perceived kudos of having done it at the end, others (especially the relatively time-poor) get weary of it very quickly.
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#30 Lord Bazaah

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Posted 11 May 2012 - 10:48 AM

Perfect World is my defintion of grind.
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