Hector, on 21 November 2012 - 10:24 PM, said:
So in conclusion, this move was so out of nowhere that it forced most of Anets most loyal customers to open their eyes. Turns out that wasn't a good thing.
I like you, you're honest.
It's the same for me, and I've admitted my idiocy recently in the forums. What it is is that I was passionate about one element of their game - the charr. That was enough to get me interested, at least. I like beast races done well. But what drove me over the edge in my desire to support them is that they promised paradigm shifts. I like paradigm shifts.
They promised to take what we knew and turn it upon its head, in regards to the game's lore, and in regards to the gameplay itself. I got on board with that. I'd have been a fool not to. It was this zeal they had for just completely abandoning everything that came before that I found entirely intoxicating, they were on this mad, mad quixotic quest! It was insane. I'd supported people before who'd promised to do this and had, but they did it in more niche genres. Mass Effect did it with sci-fi, Champions Online did it with comic books, but there's one institution that has fanatical purists guarding the gates, one genre that refuses to change or evolve: Fantasy.
They promised change. They told me that the beast race of their game would be the most intelligent, and that they'd have these grand, grand works of technological prowess. They said that the charr had become civilised and clever, that they weren't just tribal idiots. They told me that their gameplay was going to be quick, and fun, and filled with variety and novelty. They told me that the grind would be minimal, and that the entirety of the game would be open to me via one method or another, without gating. These were impressive ideas.
No other MMO developer had really promised this. They had promised to do WoW better, but fraknly? Screw WoW. I hate WoW. It's great for those that like it, but I'm just not a fan. I'm not down with it, I don't think it's cool that it's a metagame about abusing the weak wills of people via skinnerboxes, operant conditioning, and treadmills. To me, WoW is more of a social experiment than a game. It's a very successful social experiment, but it's not a very good game. Whenever I played it, I didn't find it fun. I wanted fun. I'm a big fan of fun.
But WoW was ready to restrict me at every turn, slow combat, monotonous grind, copy-pasted content, sterile trading of blows with foes. Hey, I swung my sword again and all that. We'll change all that.
And I wanted to believe them. But each little thing they did made me more and more nervous. Giving the players an NPC combatant to help them? Too radical! We can't do that! Account-wide dyes? Too radical! Let's make them per-character. An intelligent beast race? That'll lose us sales, let's make our little race into WoW gnome/goblin rip-offs with an aesthetic stole from Phantasy Star Online. That'll shift units!
Fast gameplay? They'll be unfamiliar with it, it'll be so alienating that it'll lose us sales! No, make movement speed in combat as slow as treacle, make it so slow that reflexes just don't matter. Make it so that numbers are more relevant than reflexes. And let's make more money off this! Money is more important than fulfilling promises or being innovative, so let's add a tax to everything, even taxes for dying or travelling, so that you have to buy gold if you want to be able to play casually. That'd be great for us!
Us fans will deal with these changes, right? We'll be fine. We'll put up with everything. And it just kept moving further and further. So the end result was a game that was a few steps away from WoW, but... it was WoW. The charr are too close to orcs for my tastes, the asura are gnome/goblins, the sylvari are night elves (their city is even dark), and so on, and so on. And don't even try to tell me that they're different. I've played this game and absorbed the lore. They tried to make them as close to WoW as they could without infringing copyrights.
And the slow gameplay, I... see, I play Mass Effect 3 and I'm fast. I'm fast
. So the AI has to actually be fast and tactical to deal with me. It has to rely on strategy, like using smokebombs at choke points, like properly taking cover, responding to suppressing fire, doing armored escorts of valuable units, having mobs that help each other out, like having grunts that run into your line of fire to prevent you from taking out that sniper. And having that sniper keep her range, having her finding perches for tactical shots. Things like that.
But in Guild Wars 2, I'm one-shotted because of numbers. I win or lose because of numbers. That's WoW. So...
WHERE ARE THE PARADIGM SHIFTS?
This is the realisation that broke me. The thing is is that events are so copy-pasted that they feel like quests, you even have 0/14 stuff to deal with. Combat is so, so slow moving and lethargic that dodging isn't even necessary
. In fact, you can play better without dodging. Now, if you've played a game like Mass Effect 3, you realise how incredibly important dodging is. If an atlas has shot a rocket at you, you want to dodge, because you're being flanked by smart AI who'll be ready to take advantage of your reduced health.
In GW2, you just step out of the way. The only way that GW2 kills you is with attacks you can't
avoid, and the latest dungeon has one of those as we all bloody well know. And if you have enough numbers, you don't even need to step out of red circles, you can just stand there and spam your abilities. NUMBERS. NUMBERS. NUMBERS. Great for number-fetishists who want actuary-porn, but where's the bloody fun
?! The proposed combat paradigm shift was supposed to take the focus away from actuary-porn!!!!
AND YET IT DID NOT.
This game is painfully close to WoW. I play it and... I ask myself, why isn't it fun? Champions ONline is fun. Mass Effect 3 is fun. Why isn't GW2 fun? It's because in Champions Online, there's more than numbers involved in the combat. Whether you're great or whether you suck in CO depends on how much you can think on your feet
. In GW2, it's nothing more than whether my numbers are better than the numbers of my foes. And ArenaNet agrees! Hey guys, have armour with better numbers so you can feel more powerful!
Because GW2 is a game of numbers
For most of 2012 I've had a creeping fear that culminated just around the time of ascended gear. And I'm tired with delusional people who think that this game has changed anything. It hasn't. The game we were promised was one of paradigm shifts and change. What we got was woW 2.0. Pick your orc, your gnome/goblin, your elf, or whatever, then get out there and swing your sword at things! Swing your sword again! That's great! But that's not what I
want. And we should have more self-respect than to delude ourselves into thinking that this game changed anything.
Champions Online changed shit by giving us travel powers at level 5. At level 5 you can fly around
, and that completely changes the dynamic of combat! Combat was never
the same. So where's the paradigm shift in GW2 that even rivals that? There isn't one. It's just basically a rehash of WoW. This game has been changing, bit by bit, into a WoW rehash. And like I said - the element that even made me interested in the first place, the charr, are a massive disappointment.
Even their constructions, made of plates of metal bolted over plates of metal, are reminiscent of WoW orcs, and orks from Warhammer and Warhammer 40k. The asura are just gnome/goblins with aesthetics from Phantasy Star Online. And the combat is just current day WoW with dodging (dodging that's completely useless anyway). And... where's the change? Where are teh grand revelations? Even the little things. They could have chosen to not tax us in regards to death, crafting, travelling, and so on. But they did.
So where is the grand revelation? What makes GW2 so different
Where is it?
What is it?
I saw what it might have been, back in 2011. But since 2012 I've had increasing fears. And playing the game. It's just a humongous disappointment. It signifies nothing
. And it's best forgotten. I just feel sorry for the poor buggers who're still deluding themselves.