Now is really the time for them to elaborate on the specifics of these drops. When you give people only a small amount of this type of information they're of course going to jump to conclusions. Personally from what I've read about, I already dislike the system with my very being. The infusion system is enforcing a negative type of progression. Instead of getting stronger you're getting less weak. And also sounds like they're topping the system off with RNG. Lovely.
With the more recent post, I'm starting to feel better about this and also think I have an idea as to what they are going for here. Allow me to elaborate:1.)
Ascended Gear will come in two types: that which is easy to obtain (put the plateau very much in reach for everyone as per the manifesto's claims) but likely without an infusion slot and one that comes with an infusion slot which is either dungeon limited or just harder on the scale of attainability from other sources.2.)
Infusion will be purely PvE and these fractal-style dungeons related. It lets min/maxing happen without ever touching the rest of the game world. It also allows them to tune events in such a way as to make them punish certain infusion "sortings" forcing people to have skills rather than just pure "infused 10000000%". (Consider the scenario where you can pass a fractal by having defense out the ass, but the next fractal lands you in a timed environment where your lack of damage makes you lose. This could be a way to encourage people to think (build) before setting foot into the fractal rotation.)3.)
Doing the Fractals completely
will not require ascended infusion (exotic would suffice) gear until several levels down and Fractals scale to the lowest common denominator*.
*Important: This means that when/if you hit a gear wall on Agony and cannot possibly progress further, this sort of system "in theory" encourages you to run lower progressed players through the lower tiers. Giving yourself: opportunity at more gear, more rewards, and more infusion to help you leap over the boundary you hit.4.)
No content is barred from any player to experience at least several times, the repetition of content is barred from players who do not feel like grinding but even then they can access the content by helping people at levels where neither Agony nor difficulty is too much for them. (So, its like being able to run a raid, complete it, and then the raid double in difficulty. You can do it if you want, but you've already experienced it and the story, so you've consumed the content.)
In the end, it doesn't sound that bad... but I dread the possibility of the same sort of power creep that gutted Guild Wars.
PS: Infusion slots can be used to give particle "buffs" to armor for higher and higher fractal depths, so that people can have their carrot to chase and ways of showing off their "leetness"... they'd still lose in sPvP or WvW (the latter of which should and would have access to easily reached Ascended through badges).
PPS: There's definitely mis-information going around. If you never logged in from start to seven years later into the game of Guild Wars, while, yes, your armor and weapon would have never dwindled in stats, your skills most certainly would have and you would be lacking the much more powerful PvE skills. Guild Wars 1 experienced a very obvious, very brutal power creep starting with Factions and culminating into a total PvE grindpocalypse with EotN.
Edited by Var, 15 November 2012 - 12:04 AM.