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Undocumented Nerfs/Changes?


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#1 Takato

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 07:02 PM

So I decided to check what the small update was last night after the huge bug fix/bug making update we had.

And read.

Quote


Update:
  • Fixed a client crash that would occur whilst using the dye panel whilst transformed
  • Reverted a change to the jump mechanic that impacted the timing of jumps


So wait wait, I didn't see any updates about jumping mechanic in the initial patch notes.
And this got me thinking, what else do they randomly change without telling people ?

I'm just curious as to what people think about stealth nerf/changes ?

I personally dislike the dishonesty this shows to the community, the fact that drops have been significantly nerfed and it's rather obvious when people get next to no gold drops anymore for the same time and effort. I understand there's RNG when it comes to those and that the drop rate is small to begin with, but to go from 4-5 gold an hour to 1 if you're lucky is dramatic.

I'm sure there's plenty of things out there that has been changed for the better or worse without people knowing.

Thoughts ?

Edited by Takato, 04 December 2012 - 07:03 PM.


#2 MazingerZ

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 07:08 PM

It's been broadly accepted by the community at large that they are manipulating the drop rates behind the scenes.  The fact that they can control value/demand and scarcity is a powerful tool in leveraging the value of gold and therefore driving people to the cash shop to convert gems->gold.  In fact, there should be no reason that they cannot change the drop rates on the fly.  The official forums are heavy proof that they believe in controlling the perception of things, so many do not believe them when they say otherwise.

The jump change was to fix a wall-hacking issue.  While I applaud the effort, it clearly wasn't QA'd properly.  The entire QA process is balls and a sham for a game that's been in development so long with modern development systems in process, like Agile.

If the jump change had been seamless beyond fixing wall-hacking, there would never have been a need to bring it up.  Players who were wall-hacking would comment it on it, but no one playing the game legitimately would have batted an eye.  But instead, it broke the game.  A core part of the game.  And so now people are upset.

That's the value of a proper QA process.  When fixes do not actually work, when patch notes are worded incorrectly and changes that should appear seamless actually break your game for the playerbase to see.. That is shitty QA.  Either from QA, or the people who are managing the QA.

Edited by MazingerZ, 04 December 2012 - 07:09 PM.

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Every patch is like ArenaNet walking out onto the stage of the International Don't Kitten Up Championship, and then proceeding to shiv itself in the stomach 30 times while screaming "IT'S FOR YOUR OWN GOOD! IT'S FOR YOUR OWN GOOD!"

#3 Jobuu

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 08:29 PM

Correct me if I'm wrong but did they mention the nerf about how DEs only count toward the daily if you are successful? I remember failing and still getting credit. Yea it's supposed to get rid of people tagging and leaving but what about those of us who spend the 10-15 min hacking at something, get a gold medal, but no credit toward the daily because there wasn't enough people in the zone to make it a success.

:(

#4 Kymeric

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 08:49 PM

OT, based on their difficulty producing patch notes betweeen BWEs and for a while after launch, I'm inclined to think that changes get left off more due to oversights than because of a desire to hide them from the community.

Any MMORPG dev should know how players go over every little thing with the proverbial fine tooth comb.  Stealth nerfs quickly gain the "revealed" condition.

Edited by unraveled, 05 December 2012 - 10:24 AM.
Removed reference to hidden content.


#5 ayoblame

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 09:31 PM

Honestly, I may get dismissed as "fanboying" but in MMORPGs and other large scale games I'm pretty sure it's completely possible to change some code somewhere that can adversely effect other things. Maybe the problem is with QA but I truly dont feel every stealth nerf is intentional.

To reply to the reduced drop rates my only really way to judge this is based on Cursed Shore farming pre-bot ban. I've farmed my fair share and I'm under the impression that the reduction in the amount of drops is actually directly related to the amount of people doing the events. More people = Higher level/more mobs for some events I'd assume the higher the level the higher chance it has to drop loot. But, since ANET isn't exactly transparent about how drops/farming/dr work I guess the tinfoil hats can be justified.

Every MMO dev team has the ability to manipulate drop rates. It does not surprise me to see things being adjusted as the game progresses and I feel that it isn't only the result of Anet pushing gem to gold ratio I'm sure that could very well be part of it. However,  keeping inflation under control is pretty important IMO. Not to mention the fact is that most Cash Shop driven games are actually supported by a small % of the community. I'm not going to make up internet statistics but I'm sure you can google that and have it verified. Thinking it's just to push gem to gold seems a little silly.

Edited by ayoblame, 04 December 2012 - 09:35 PM.


#6 MazingerZ

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 10:10 PM

View Postayoblame, on 04 December 2012 - 09:31 PM, said:

Honestly, I may get dismissed as "fanboying" but in MMORPGs and other large scale games I'm pretty sure it's completely possible to change some code somewhere that can adversely effect other things. Maybe the problem is with QA but I truly dont feel every stealth nerf is intentional.

To reply to the reduced drop rates my only really way to judge this is based on Cursed Shore farming pre-bot ban. I've farmed my fair share and I'm under the impression that the reduction in the amount of drops is actually directly related to the amount of people doing the events. More people = Higher level/more mobs for some events I'd assume the higher the level the higher chance it has to drop loot. But, since ANET isn't exactly transparent about how drops/farming/dr work I guess the tinfoil hats can be justified.

Every MMO dev team has the ability to manipulate drop rates. It does not surprise me to see things being adjusted as the game progresses and I feel that it isn't only the result of Anet pushing gem to gold ratio I'm sure that could very well be part of it. However,  keeping inflation under control is pretty important IMO. Not to mention the fact is that most Cash Shop driven games are actually supported by a small % of the community. I'm not going to make up internet statistics but I'm sure you can google that and have it verified. Thinking it's just to push gem to gold seems a little silly.

It's entirely possible.  The problem is, it's easier to come to that conclusion when you get down to motives.  For something like WoW, it's clear that it was done because it would cut short their grind.  But with a sub MMO, everyone paid the ticket price, so it only comes down to the time you have and what you do with it.  And that comes down the debate of the casuals vs the hardcores.  They want everyone to continue to pay the membership fee, so they're trying to find the happiest balance available.

With a cash shop, gold for cash MMO, though, you cannot outright exclude a for-profit motive.  They let everyone in the door for free (ostensibly, tho there was a $60 lifetime pass), but now they want you to drive you to the services that make additional money.  The games, the food kiosks, etc.  You also know where you rank.  If you're one of the loiterers, one of the mallrats, all you do is provide scenery.  You generate resources, you keep the economy going.  If you weren't around, they would probably up drop-rates to keep items from becoming scarce (like in WoW... low level stuff being super-scarce).  If you're so reticent about not spending any real cash, then the company has no reason to cater to you beyond keeping the population levels healthy enough to let the game appear vibrant.

TLDR: When a company has a way to convert your RL money into in-game purchasing power, it's hard to exclude that as a motive for any change to the game economy.
It's okay to enjoy crap if you're willing to admit it's crap.
Every patch is like ArenaNet walking out onto the stage of the International Don't Kitten Up Championship, and then proceeding to shiv itself in the stomach 30 times while screaming "IT'S FOR YOUR OWN GOOD! IT'S FOR YOUR OWN GOOD!"

#7 garull

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 10:14 PM

Do you really think they will tell you every little details they change in the patches ... please.

#8 Falfyrel

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 10:28 PM

Jumping was glitched out during the first patch update and led to a lot of people (myself included) sorely noticing it while trying to perform jumping puzzles. This was due to a very short delay of a few milliseconds or so from when you tried to jump and successfully performed the jump - but the delay was enough to occasionally make jumps "fail," especially when traversing steep cliffs common in many jump puzzles.

I'm not sure whether it was on purpose or not but I'm very glad it was reverted.

EDIT: As for why it was made, I believe it was made to make jumping feel more "natural," with a short delay before it occurred. It was really glitchy, though, and many people hated it. I doubt there was an ulterior motive regarding the cash shop or anything.

Edited by Falfyrel, 04 December 2012 - 10:29 PM.


#9 MazingerZ

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 10:30 PM

View PostFalfyrel, on 04 December 2012 - 10:28 PM, said:

Jumping was glitched out during the first patch update and led to a lot of people (myself included) sorely noticing it while trying to perform jumping puzzles. This was due to a very short delay of a few milliseconds or so from when you tried to jump and successfully performed the jump - but the delay was enough to occasionally make jumps "fail," especially when traversing steep cliffs common in many jump puzzles.

I'm not sure whether it was on purpose or not but I'm very glad it was reverted.

EDIT: As for why it was made, I believe it was made to make jumping feel more "natural," with a short delay before it occurred. It was really glitchy, though, and many people hated it. I doubt there was an ulterior motive regarding the cash shop or anything.

No, it was designed due to some jump/wall-hacking occuring.  I think Jade Maw, but don't quote me on that particular detail.  It clearly wasn't tested, considering the amount of stuff it broke.

Edited by MazingerZ, 04 December 2012 - 10:30 PM.

It's okay to enjoy crap if you're willing to admit it's crap.
Every patch is like ArenaNet walking out onto the stage of the International Don't Kitten Up Championship, and then proceeding to shiv itself in the stomach 30 times while screaming "IT'S FOR YOUR OWN GOOD! IT'S FOR YOUR OWN GOOD!"

#10 Cronos988

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 10:32 PM

View PostMazingerZ, on 04 December 2012 - 10:10 PM, said:

TLDR: When a company has a way to convert your RL money into in-game purchasing power, it's hard to exclude that as a motive for any change to the game economy.

And when you cannot exclude that motive, let's all assume that is actually the case, and any personal anecdote about feeling like you get lower drop rate hints at a conspiracy to move you to the cash shop.

It's only been one day, yet people have conclusive prove that it is a fact that drop rates have been "dramatically" nerfed.

As you can probably tell from my sarcasm, I find that hardly believable. Sure, I have no proof that there isn't a conspiracy, but I do believe in the null hypothesis.

Edited by Cronos988, 04 December 2012 - 10:33 PM.


#11 Falfyrel

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 10:39 PM

View PostMazingerZ, on 04 December 2012 - 10:30 PM, said:

No, it was designed due to some jump/wall-hacking occuring.  I think Jade Maw, but don't quote me on that particular detail.  It clearly wasn't tested, considering the amount of stuff it broke.

Ah. Point taken.

Yeah, it wasn't tested very well...

But as to all of the rumors going around that ArenaNet is willingly scamming their customers out of money via changes to drop rates and the ingame economy? Hanlon's Razor, please. Until there can be no other explanation other than that ArenaNet is willingly scamming the players out of schadenfreudre, most other possible explanations would appear far more sensible. They would have nothing to gain from knowingly thumbing their nose at the playerbase, and ignoring the whole Ascended debate, they've rarely if ever done so in the past.

#12 MazingerZ

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 10:40 PM

View PostCronos988, on 04 December 2012 - 10:32 PM, said:

And when you cannot exclude that motive, let's all assume that is actually the case, and any personal anecdote about feeling like you get lower drop rate hints at a conspiracy to move you to the cash shop.

It's only been one day, yet people have conclusive prove that it is a fact that drop rates have been "dramatically" nerfed.

As you can probably tell from my sarcasm, I find that hardly believable. Sure, I have no proof that there isn't a conspiracy, but I do believe in the null hypothesis.

You're free to assume that.  But it's perception over the reality.  And managing your customers' expectations is part of running a successful business.
It's okay to enjoy crap if you're willing to admit it's crap.
Every patch is like ArenaNet walking out onto the stage of the International Don't Kitten Up Championship, and then proceeding to shiv itself in the stomach 30 times while screaming "IT'S FOR YOUR OWN GOOD! IT'S FOR YOUR OWN GOOD!"

#13 Cronos988

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 10:49 PM

View PostMazingerZ, on 04 December 2012 - 10:40 PM, said:

You're free to assume that.  But it's perception over the reality.  And managing your customers' expectations is part of running a successful business.

That is the beauty of the null hypothesis: It doesn't assume anything.

#14 MazingerZ

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 11:27 PM

View PostCronos988, on 04 December 2012 - 10:49 PM, said:

That is the beauty of the null hypothesis: It doesn't assume anything.

Yes, it does.  It assumes there is not any relationship.  The only thing about a null hypothesis is that it can never be proven or disproved, but refuted when proof comes out for the actual hypothesis.

You didn't specifically state your null hypothesis, so I cannot argue against it... but based on your post, it might go something like this:

The lowered drop rates having nothing to do with a conspiracy to push us to the cash shop.

It's pretty simplistic, because even with research on a correlation (and that would just be a correlation, not causation) between lowered drop rates and an increase in RMT revenue, without like... a paper trail, a refute of that null hypothesis could really come in the form of documented communications intent at the ArenaNet offices.

http://en.wikipedia....Null_hypothesis

Quote

The practice of science involves formulating and testing hypotheses, statements that are capable of being proven false using a test of observed data.  The null hypothesis typically corresponds to a general or default position. For example, the null hypothesis might be that there is no relationship between two measured phenomena or that a potential treatment has no effect.

...

The null hypothesis can never be proven. Data, such as the results of an observation or experiment, can only reject or fail to reject a null hypothesis. For example, if comparison of two groups (for example, comparing subjects treated with a medication with untreated subjects) reveals no statistically significant difference between the two, it does not prove that there really is no difference; it only shows that the results were not sufficient to reject the null hypothesis.

It's okay to enjoy crap if you're willing to admit it's crap.
Every patch is like ArenaNet walking out onto the stage of the International Don't Kitten Up Championship, and then proceeding to shiv itself in the stomach 30 times while screaming "IT'S FOR YOUR OWN GOOD! IT'S FOR YOUR OWN GOOD!"

#15 Symbiont

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 11:33 PM

can we call it ninja-nerf? some might think you want to nerf stealth ;)

#16 ayoblame

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 12:13 AM

The thing about the conspiracy theory is that you don't design an MMO as a get rich quick scheme. If they were manipulating item drops to force players to the Gem Store that would be a pretty terrible business decision. Since that'll result in them losing players, losing potential revenue sources and that seems to make even less sense. You want a bigger player base (insert ascended items) You want people to continue to play not quit in between expansions.

I just dont understand how anyone can really believe they're that stupid. This is a business and while doing something like this might increase short term profits what kind of effects would it have on the longevity of the game? Do you think they didn't watch the diablo 3 shit storm? Didn't see the effect of pissing off a substantial part of your player base would cause? They have guys who crunch numbers and statistics and get paid for it.

I'm not excusing  their actions if this is what they're doing. But, I simply don't believe it's whats being done. I personally feel the gem to gold option shouldn't be available at all. But as with Blizzard and Diablo 3 they accepted the fact that players will use 3rd party websites to buy gold and/or buy items why not get a cut? or at least that's my take on it. If the gem  market values are truly player driven supply/demand then to me I can't see of a better way to have a feature like that.

Edited by ayoblame, 05 December 2012 - 12:16 AM.


#17 Bloggi

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 03:38 AM

Farming is something I haven't done for a very long time so I couldn't say anything about the drop rates being reduced. Nevertheless, farming DEs has been the most mind-numbing thing I've ever done in this game...just glad to leave it behind.

#18 HawkofStorms

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 03:49 AM

/fail

This was not a dishonest thing.
This was a bug that people were complaining about a ton that accidentally occurred in the last patch.  You clearly have no idea how programing works if you think they intentionally caused that bug.

#19 Ghetto Medic

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 03:55 AM

I was hoping the topic was about the stealth mechanic, yes nerf stealth lol

#20 Bottoms_Up

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 04:14 AM

View Postayoblame, on 05 December 2012 - 12:13 AM, said:

I just dont understand how anyone can really believe they're that stupid.

They thought it was a good idea to have a precursor scramble in a three hour event that many of their customers couldn't attend (with following shit storm). But it doesn't have to be stupidity; incompetence, poor communication, executive influence, etc. are all possible reasons.


View Postgarull, on 04 December 2012 - 10:14 PM, said:

Do you really think they will tell you every little details they change in the patches ... please.

Well, yes, at least ones that affect the players directly. I assume they have internal documentation listing all changes made so why not publish that for the public? The change to jumping was, I assume, meant to be seamless (unnoticeable by players) so wouldn't need to be listed, but you then get issues like the latest mesmer phantasm 'bugs' where, because players don't know if it is intended or a bug, results in further shit storms. If they had a history of publishing every change (and players' trust in doing so) it would be simple to determine if something is a bug or intended and much chagrin would be bypassed.

#21 Chalky

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 09:15 AM

I've updated the title to avoid confusion.

On the topic at hand, it's very common for updates involving the closing of exploits to be undocumented since fully documenting them will help exploiters to more easily find ways around them.

The jumping fix is no doubt an attempt at fixing an exploitable issue which was unfortunately not very well tested - regardless though, it's valid for it to be an unannounced update.
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#22 Gileas898

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 03:04 PM

They have (tried and failed) to fix exploits in multiple dungeons.

They continue to do it just like in GW1, implementing their own idea of fixes that fix absolutely nothing, without consulting anyone in the player base who has 10x more knowledge than them of the exploits and how to fix them.

Last time I reported a dungeon exploits (5min run) the only reply received was "We are not going to do anything about this", and sure enough, 1,5 months later and the exploit is still working the same way. :)

Oh and of course there are the stealth nerf to drop rates of ectos and dyes.

#23 Lucas Ashrock

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 03:18 PM

Obiovulsy there are loads more fix not mentioned. For example, look the list of fractals fixes. Does it correspond to the real amount of exploit fixed? ;) I can make so many more examples of Anet fake patch notes ;)

Edited by Lucas Ashrock, 05 December 2012 - 05:10 PM.


#24 DuskWolf

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 03:21 PM

People have been reporting a lot of shadow nerfs. It happened in the later years of GW1, too. It's just not how you do things.

#25 Kenjamin

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 03:54 PM

View PostGileas898, on 05 December 2012 - 03:04 PM, said:

Oh and of course there are the stealth nerf to drop rates of ectos and dyes.


I rolled my eyes when someone said this last week, but I did start to monitor it for kicks.  After this past week, I'm starting to consider it plausible.

Arena Net has said that, in essence "we want ecots to be more valuable and they were never at the cost or availability of what we thought they should be."  Then followed up with a (valid) claim was that the cost went up because of less bots.

Now, I do believe that to be true, but I'm also starting to wonder if the salvage chance for ectos was also reduced.  Given a random assortment of rares, I usually ended up with at least 1 ecto per rare.  Some would give 2 or 3, and others would give 0.  I usually salvage when I have about 10 rares in my bags, and thus would end up with about 10 ectos.  Lately, more like 5.

It could very well be that Lady Luck has frowned upon me, but I'm starting to wonder.......

#26 Linfang

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 04:08 PM

It's all falling into play.

Big winter's day event coming up. Must rake in Gem store profits.

Nerf drops, make people more broke, skew the gold to gems conversion making it abysmal.

Launch Winter event, shiny, pretty new items in cash shop. RNG, RNG, RNG..

Buy gems with real money, take a spin with RNG, End up broke with more junk you have no room for. Anet wins, cya next event.

#27 Isaac82

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 04:18 PM

Most of these changes are hotfixed in, not patched in anyway and changed multiple times. However it's not good to post every change they make, for the sake of botters/farmers/exploiters. Besides do you really want to read through 10 pages of them saying changed the drop rate of this by .001 and this by .0002 and this one by .0021, seriously? For drop rates that's actually how it would need to be because its depended on how players play. Overall drop rates stay pretty consistent they just move around who drops them. As far as ecto drop rates they changed those over a month ago it just took the market time to catch up. I noticed because I made my money by salvaging exotics.

#28 Coren

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 04:22 PM

Pardon my naivety, but can't ANet have GMs on the servers? I mean when I play LOTRO and report a bug, within 10-30 minutes a GM contacts me personally until the issue is resolved. Turbine's service in this regard is top notch.

#29 Lucas Ashrock

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 05:15 PM

View PostIsaac82, on 05 December 2012 - 04:18 PM, said:

Most of these changes are hotfixed in, not patched in anyway and changed multiple times. However it's not good to post every change they make, for the sake of botters/farmers/exploiters. Besides do you really want to read through 10 pages of them saying changed the drop rate of this by .001 and this by .0002 and this one by .0021, seriously? For drop rates that's actually how it would need to be because its depended on how players play. Overall drop rates stay pretty consistent they just move around who drops them. As far as ecto drop rates they changed those over a month ago it just took the market time to catch up. I noticed because I made my money by salvaging exotics.
No not 001 nor 002. Just " we made corrections about loottable and drop rate of X. So long to type, will make it 50 pages long huh. Obiouvsly , core stuff, not the droprrate of a blue krytan sword ^_^

View PostCoren, on 05 December 2012 - 04:22 PM, said:

Pardon my naivety, but can't ANet have GMs on the servers? I mean when I play LOTRO and report a bug, within 10-30 minutes a GM contacts me personally until the issue is resolved. Turbine's service in this regard is top notch.
Dream of it, we never had one over gw1, we will never have one over gw2. You're enough lucky to meet players with Anet guild tag on their head for a few minutes, then they just disable it, bored.

WoW was the same of lotro about it, superb service. Here we just makes tickets, and receive a bot automatic answer

Edited by Lucas Ashrock, 05 December 2012 - 05:16 PM.


#30 Tainted Queen

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 10:31 PM

Anet used to update/nerf things all the time in guild wars 1. It usually was directed at farming and exploits things you wouldn't notice unless you participated in such activities. Things that were minor to a player with their heros/guild mates playing through for fun but things that would be devastating for a speed clear team. The jump change was to try and prevent an exploit that is starting to hurt wvw matches since they are using it to scale walls to get inside towers/keeps without knocking down walls or gates letting them cap them without ever touching the towers/keeps defensives.

Anet is also fond of nerfing things and calling them bug fixes (sliver armor nerf in gw1) so expect that as well, some will say its already been done with the ranger short bow nerf and then saying it was done to fix an animation problem that no one ever saw while other classes have plenty animation problems.




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