Good Afternoon Fellow Tyrians!
I sat down this morning was looking over the forums again and started writing. This post may be a little disjointed and hop around a lot but I think that many of the points are things we all feel. Please read this in the spirit it is written a more of a brain dump of ideas and thoughts A dear diary if you will. I hope you enjoy this and look forward to your responses both good and bad.
There have been a lot of arguments and emotions thrown about concerning the state of the game and the new design of gear with this latest patch. These topics are close to our hearts for many reasons and they all have their merit. I myself have put in my 2 cents for what it was work in a previous forums. In the end Anet has to make hard decisions in order to please a number of groups (Core, PVErs, PVPrs, Dungeon Lurkers, and yes its stock holders). Below is a very simplistic decryption of each most of us fall into more than one of these.
Core: Players want the game to be exactly what as was promised. Most have played other MMO’s and have left them because of the direction those games took, became disenfranchised or were simply board with the grind game play. Also in this group reside a lot of the original GW1 players that has faith that GW2 can run on the same principles of GW1. For the Core Players the game itself IS the reward.
PvE: Players want a large beautiful world with lots to engage them. Quests, Immersion, vanquishing evil and creating a legend are the reward for these individuals. For PvErs if you kill a dragon and save a kingdom your rewards should reflect that. GW1 did this quite well with receiving a max stat Item upon completion.
PvP: Players want a challenging battle of skill and organized team play to cast down their enemies at their feet. They want rewards that not only reflect their skill but also act as bragging rights allowing them to show their superiority in battle. PvPrs want leader board’s and ranking as their ultimate reward. Different looking gear is great but being top of the charts is better.
Dungeon Lurkers: Players are similar to the PvPrs in that they want rewards that not only reflect their skill but also act as bragging rights. However Dungeon Lurkers are different in that they want the gear rewards to be unique from others. Many MMO’s have made the mistake of nerfing a dungeon without taking this into account.
Stock Holders: Want all these players to keep playing the game and spending money on it. So it is in their interest to keep as much of the player base as happy as possible and spending money.
So is there a way to keep everyone happy? Human nature is no. However, ArenaNet is trying to do its best. Their biggest issue to date is not the changes that are being made but in their communication. This is not the first time their lack of communication has gotten them in trouble and hopefully they will learn from these mistakes and won’t be so tight lipped going forward. That being said, here are my suggestions that ArenaNet should implement to continue its longevity and increase its player base while holding on to the ones it has.
Bugs and Security: ArenaNet has been working their butt of trying to fix these issues and while they have come a long way there is still a long road ahead of them. With the release of this new patch also comes a ton of bug fixes so there is some light at the end of this tunnel. Security, while there has been an implementation of the beta authenticator that does not solve the issue for those who do not have a one of these devices this runs on. All of the other NCSoft games have build in a security feature that allowed you attach a pin to your characters with a virtual keyboard for input. I am not saying that we need a pin for each character but for the account it’s self might work. Also, I would gladly slap down cash for a KeyFob like the ones used in other MMO’s.
Communication: As stated by many, communication is a major issue. So how do we solve it? My suggestion is a once a week blog from ArenaNet on the state of the game. There was a good article in which Colin listed the various teams that are working on our game. A simple blog with a paragraph or so from each team would go a long way. The developers I am sure hold meeting every week on the exact same thing. Why not take that same information and let us know what they can. Secrecy only creates tin foil hat issues. Also, more Twitch Q&A would be nice.
Events: Everyone will agree that Bugs besides, ArenaNet has done an outstanding job in this case. New content each month, new areas, additional stories and more jumping puzzles continue to keep people engaged in this world. There truly is never a lack of things to do if you have the time.
Dungeons: We will see how this new dungeon works out. I am still not completely sold on agony but we will see. However, the introducing new dungeons with each content release is smart, it is appreciated please keep it up. One change here that I would like to see is world first gear. This is gear and weapons (look only) that can only be obtained for beating the new dungeon first or within a specified time frame. This would probably be no more than one week after the world first. Title would not go amiss here (PlayerName) World First (Dungeon Name).
PvP: I do not play PvP much so I am only going off of others. From what I read thou these are the things that have to be implemented soon in order to hold these players Observation Mode, Dueling, Guild vs Guild, Private Tournament Servers and Streamed Gameplay. Again I am not much of a PvPer so those of you that are please chime in on this.
Guild Housing: In a recent interview Colin was asked about this and he admitted that currently there was no one working on this. Please, Please, Please guilds want this and they want it now. (I will write post later on this and what my suggestions are for it)
Black Lion Trading: Things are being added with each patch and this is great. However, expansion of items on this can only help with the bottom line.
World Transfers: The servers have balanced out as much as it will. Cut off the free transfer and implement gusting as soon as you can. The free transfers have only hurt WvW.
Future thoughts and Ideas:
I have a couple of ideas that are too late to implement now but could be upon future expansions. They might seem a little radical but that is the point of this game is to try new things.
Character Progression: Lets for a second say that the next expansion of this game allows our character to progress to level 100 that is 20 levels from the current standing. In my idea each level would get exponentially harder to achieve. Each level would require tons more XP than the last with completion of personal story, crafting levels, world exploration and dungeons (in story mode) required to achieve max level. In this Idea achieving max level would be the Legendary. In this model there would be 3 levels to each dungeon (Story Mode, Rare level and Exotic level). Story mode in this case would be similar to your personal story in that you can run it solo (how be it hard to do so) with NPC’s or with your friends. Rare level would require a 5 man party and would be for those who have not reached max level and the rewards for it would be of course rare gear. Exotic level would be for max level characters only and would be one of the ways to achieve Exotic gear.
Gear Change: This may be a balance issue but I have always felt that a player should be able to stat he gear as he sees fit. If we look at the current way gear is handled each level of gear as a set number per stat per level. This is a very rigid system and promotes power creep. My idea is a lot more flexible the stats of your gear would be handled similar to the trait system. You start with a finite number of points to be put in each piece of gear and as you level you gain more points to put in that gear. So then what is the point of having different levels of gear? Quite simply weight each point. The greater the gear quality level the greater the weight of the points. Example: White + 0%, Blue + 25%, Green + 50%, Yellow + 75%, Orange + 100%. This way a person’s gear will level with them. If you have a full set of Exotic gear the reason you would get new gear is for looks and set bonuses. Set bonuses can be abilities, looks, magic find anything that is not direct stat related.
Well right or wrong those are my thoughts. In conclusion let me just say thank you ArenaNet for a great game I really am enjoying playing and hope to for a long time and thank you reader for taking time to read this great mess of thoughts. I look forward to reading the responses on this both good and bad.
The Last Jagaroth
A players thoughts or GW2 State of the Game
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