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Purpose of Personal Storyline

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#31 Kenril

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 03:12 PM

Even though writing in Guild Wars wasn't stellar, it did deliver (at least in Prophecies) a story that was fun to follow and rooted in classic fantasy. Personally, I especially loved the cutscenes showing your party members and yourself interacting with the other characters. The writing quality did go down with Factions and onwards, but still, it was somewhat descent.

Now with Guild Wars 2, I have reached level 80 on my main character in september, but I still haven't brought myself to finish the story. The writing is no fantasy, reeks of political correctness (gay trees, fantastic !), and the cutscenes set inside the beautiful game world have been replaced by awfully acted dialogues in front of a boring background. Who's idea was it to remove everything that worked well in the previous games ?

And the biggest problem of all, is that for the most part of the game, you do not feel like a hero, it is not YOUR story. You are commanded around by some dumb treenager, it simply doesn't work for me.

Edited by Kenril, 11 February 2013 - 03:13 PM.


#32 Kurosov

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 03:20 PM

The personal story was pretty damn good up until order choice where it began to drop in quality. This is likely a side-affect of having 5 races to choose from, the cultural aspects of the story work really well but when it comes to writing a shared story for all the races problems arise. Having multiple choices while a nice idea also seemed to water down the personal story.

I also get the feeling the racial parts were added back when time was less of an issue and as such got more attention. Would have been nice to have had more exploration into the racial story as well.

I'm hoping the mix it up in the next expansion and combine aspects of the personal story with the mission system used in pre-eotn gw1. Make the personal story constantly tailored to race but have multiple points were people meet up as missions (similar to the dungeon story modes, they'd be repreatable).

#33 Lythuun

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 06:07 PM

Honestly, the only part I liked was the racial portion, after you chose an Order, it goes down hill. I played all the storylines for Charr, and really enjoyed it, but the fact one of them leaves you on a total cliffhanger that isn't revisited sucks.

Biggest reason I hated the story though was by far Trahaerne. Worst characterization I've seen in a game in a fairly long time. Monotone voice, no real expressions, "leader" of the Pact who always asks his Commander what to do, yep, he's a pro.

#34 Dom

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 06:30 PM

I played through all of the orders story arcs and played a human, asuran and sylvari through each order and out of all three I enjoyed the Priory missions the most.

The mission 'The Ghost Rite' had you take on an Avatar of Balthazar and use uber OP skills to squish Risen. It was so nice to have a new skill bar and a change of pace.

The sylvari story I chose had me find the Caladbolg and actually wield it for an instance.

The asuran story is just awful and I never experience the norn or charr.

Most of the instances after Claw Island was a bit of a bore and not to mention too much waypointing all over and wasting silver. I enjoyed seeing the Temple of the Forgotten God and the last instance before the Zhiatan fight was well done but as for the fight against Zhiatan itself - felt rushed.

#35 Ottosteve

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 06:48 PM

View PostNyrath, on 11 February 2013 - 11:40 AM, said:

I guess I'm the only one who quite liked personal story (at least until Trahearne appeared)...

No, you're not the only one.

I think most of the personal stories have been fantastic. I've done two different versions of the human story, two of the charr, a norn and a slyvari. All of them have been enjoyable, especially in the Charr, at least in my opinion.

The storyline starts to go down hill once the orders are introduced. While not terrible, I just didn't like the feeling of being a "novice", when I was suppose to be a hero. Even then by the end you end up graduating......

.......to move onto the third act of the story, which basically involves you being the "sidekick" to a house plant. From Claw Island on, I find little to no enjoyment in the storyline. I've got three characters at 80th level and none of them have completed it (two of the them stopped in the mid-70 levels and one in the mid-60s).

The problem is there is nothing that is very compelling about the story. Unlike games like Mass Effect or Dragon Age where you get sucked into the story the farther you go by making you more important , GW2 seems to want to push you out of the story by making you a sidekick.

#36 Skrobble

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 06:52 PM

View PostOttosteve, on 11 February 2013 - 06:48 PM, said:

No, you're not the only one.

I think most of the personal stories have been fantastic. I've done two different versions of the human story, two of the charr, a norn and a slyvari. All of them have been enjoyable, especially in the Charr, at least in my opinion.

The storyline starts to go down hill once the orders are introduced. While not terrible, I just didn't like the feeling of being a "novice", when I was suppose to be a hero. Even then by the end you end up graduating......

.......to move onto the third act of the story, which basically involves you being the "sidekick" to a house plant. From Claw Island on, I find little to no enjoyment in the storyline. I've got three characters at 80th level and none of them have completed it (two of the them stopped in the mid-70 levels and one in the mid-60s).

The problem is there is nothing that is very compelling about the story. Unlike games like Mass Effect or Dragon Age where you get sucked into the story the farther you go by making you more important , GW2 seems to want to push you out of the story by making you a sidekick.

This seems to be the community consensus. I wish there was a way to get Anet to revist the story, although I highly doubt that any re-writing will happen this far after release.

#37 Perm Shadow Form

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 06:53 PM

I stopped playing story after level 50. It felt...boring, wan't interested in it at all.
Evil Dragons, bla bla bla.

#38 Mastruq

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 07:49 PM

Yea they should have written more optional story lines instead of one over-arching story you have to follow. I was fine with the first two chapters but I havent even finished the last few missions of the third chapter (My time as adjutant to the great Trahearne) because I didnt enjoy it.

The sad part is the underlying technical aspect of using any part of the world for your personal story instance is brilliant. They could so much more with it if. Imo they should have given each zone or group of zones a story but made it strictly optional. "Humans vs centaurs" for queensdale to hinterlands, any character can get involved IF they want, not because there is only one point from A to B on the story board. Do that for most areas, done. The whole Trahearne part could still have been the story arc for Orr, and it possibly wouldnt be as imposing and annyoing as it is now because it would be a seperate story of you stepping up to help there instead of being led there from level 1 on.

#39 Ottosteve

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 07:56 PM

View PostMastruq, on 11 February 2013 - 07:49 PM, said:

The sad part is the underlying technical aspect of using any part of the world for your personal story instance is brilliant.

Honestly, when I first started playing GW2, I thought it was exactly that. I thought the choices that I made during character creation were going to effect the story my character was playing through from beginning to end.

I was quite sad to learn that the farther I advanced through the story, the more the story converged to a single point and the decisions I made during character creation had less of an effect on the story.

#40 Faowri

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 08:05 PM

I do think this is one of those cases where the ambition and the potential were great, but (as with much of the game IMO), the polish is all front heavy because they prioritised early content. My interest in any of my character's personal stories takes a sharp drop after level 30. I still haven't completed the PS on my main, largely because ughTrahearne and ughOrr. The main reason I've gotten as far as I have with it is because I wound up in PS sync with a friend, and we're moving through it together, mocking Trahearne whenever we get the opportunity.

You achieve all sorts by level 30, but you're still a newbie who needs mentoring when you join an order. And when the orders merge, you're still too much a newbie to be the main character in your own story. I didn't even mind when Kormir became a god, because the majority of the story, she wasn't even around, and after all she'd been through I felt she'd earned it through her suffering at least. Trahearne, on the other hand, is just a massive Gary Stu.

The lack of permanence and meaning bothers me, too. I loved the sylvari twins arc, for example. But despite loving both characters they're now sitting doing nothing in my home instance where nothing ever happens. It'd be nice if they actually 'lived' there, and I could come 'home' and find them doing different things now and again, or having a conversation about something. The home instance was another feature made out to be a big thing and ended up contributing absolutely nothing to the game. It's frustrating. I think they released months too early, to be honest. I'd rather have waited another half-year and seen this type of content polished off instead of left half-finished.

Edited by Faowri, 11 February 2013 - 08:10 PM.


#41 Auenwing

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 08:07 PM

Storylines lead to

1) ability to get the orders gear / weapons if you like the looks

2) ability to get to the pact gear (if you like the looks) after killing Zhaitan (you know, those weapon "skins" selling for gold on the tradepost)


Personal storylines can be used for a bit of power leveling.  Start with your level 3 story. Just skip to the end during dialogues, have level 80 guildmates / friends take you through as many of the storyline instances as possible.  The exp you get is very good, particularly when the stories are 10 or so levels above your level. You need to be aware enough to not die getting into the zone story entrance (easy) or during the story fights (if you've done them before, you'll know where to stand.)


The first couple of times through stories with different races was interesting. By the 20th time (alts, helping guildmates), you just want  Trahearne to fall into a hole and never come out.


.

Edited by Auenwing, 11 February 2013 - 08:09 PM.


#42 Lol Lol Lol Guy

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 08:11 PM

I too enjoyed the story until around the Pact/Trahearne stuff started coming up. Then it just....sucked. Which is a shame cause the lore of Gw2 is still as good and awesome as Gw1's lore was, but story wise..what a dissapointment. I miss Gw1 story...PS needs to be longer and much better in future. and by "longer" i mean the missions themselves, not the story. Cut down the NUMBER of mini missions which is "Kill 30 enemies, hit button, YOU ARE WINNER!" Make them the style/size of Gw1 missions. I would love a Thunderhead Keep mission style mission in gw2. or that one in NF where you escort the wounded sunspears out of kourna.

#43 Sandpit

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 10:16 PM

Story is very bad, and nothing personal about it. My first character got to the end. No other character has made it past claw island as it's just a poor zombie grind from there on.

#44 Bloggi

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 11:22 PM

View PostDom, on 11 February 2013 - 06:30 PM, said:


The mission 'The Ghost Rite' had you take on an Avatar of Balthazar and use uber OP skills to squish Risen. It was so nice to have a new skill bar and a change of pace.



The mission statement there being: 'Slaughter your enemies'. It said everything about how OP the new skill bar was and I really enjoyed this mission as well.

#45 Impmon

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 12:08 AM

Have four 80's and did some of the personal story on my warrior the others I haven't bothered.  When I did them I clicked skip all the dialogue too.

#46 Dal Minjo

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 12:30 AM

I don't know why, maybe just poor writing in GW2 or the fact that reaching max level is faster in GW1, but I always felt GW1 has much more replay value with new characters than GW2 does even with the choices you're given in character creation.

On second thought, it's probably because the missions in general are way more fun and unique, and the fact that you actually play with other people on the missions (not so much these days).

Edited by Inspectah Paux, 12 February 2013 - 12:42 AM.


#47 StormDragonZ

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 12:41 AM

Hold the phone! People actually bought this game for a possible exciting story development?

No one plays online multiplayer games for the story!

/sarcasm

#48 Bohya

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 01:01 AM

Personal story needs a total revamp. I hope they fix it in the next expansion. There's no sense of world progression. I know I shouldn't refer to World of Warcraft (I'm the furthest thing from a ''WoW fanatic''), but they nailed the storyline spot on with Wrath of the Lich King. The fact that we couldn't just scoot through the story and kill the Lich King helped to build up anticipation and make the story into something pretty epic. Hell, I even preferred the original Guild Wars' plot over Guild Wars 2. If they stretched the story by staggering how far you can reach in it, such as by introducing tough dungeons (though the ''shitty dungeons'' debate is an entirely other issue) or zones actually relevant to the fight against Zhaitan once per patch or something, with each dungeon's story directly expanding on the previous's, I think many people would still be playing the game. Once you complete the story (which I did in five days), get your desired armour skin (30 minutes a day for two weeks), and complete every dungeon, there's pretty much nothing to left to do in the game until the next major patch... which will probably be completed within a week again and then there's another six month wait.

#49 Sandpit

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 01:13 PM

The stories in GW1 were pretty good, and the way they were told through mission, side quests and cut scenes worked a lot better than following the same sequence story arc chasing green stars on the map. The side by side dialogue cut scenes looked interesting at first, but now I just skip to the end as they are just dull and tedious.

#50 illveran

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 01:49 PM

The story itself was pretty decent for me, but the way it was given for audience - those stiff cutscenes are boring as hell. We have such a lovely scenery in this game. In conjunction with close ups andn other camera movements with dialogs in clouds above characters not only in personal story but also in dungeons this would look and feel much better in my opinion

#51 Saleem

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 02:07 PM

For me... only the order arcs where enjoyable as they had some of the more likable npc's, your supposedly mentors.
Some of the beginning racial stories are OK too.
Afterwards it just spirals down and feels like separate missions with a background story stitched  together to try to produce smth coherent and relevant which didn't work out though.
The stitched feeling really is visible with the missions involving Losaru of the Wild... where he keeps reintroducing himself, trice ! It clearly shows that different teams worked on different parts and that there was a lack of communication or lack of overall vision and coordination of the teams.
It just feels silly and redundant.
The fact the pace is so fast too because there's so many different things happening even though they don't even really progress the story doesn't help either.
There's no depth at all.
The characters more often than not feel artificial and irrelevant,
I don't even care about being the hero of the story or anything ( which I wasn't anyway) but I'd like something more coherent, more consistent ( aka using certain characters more often and fleshed out) that takes itself a bit less seriously aswell ( or atleast one that remains a bit more modest)
I mean the presentation doesn't help either but common ... some games like Fire Emblem still use this and yet manage to deliver something compelling.

P.S. Prophecies and Factions were bad ... I just feel like GW 2 went back to that kind of quality as far as delivery and presentation goes.Nightfall and EoTN where progressively getting better though.

Edited by Saleem, 12 February 2013 - 02:16 PM.


#52 Faowri

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 08:47 PM

View PostSaleem, on 12 February 2013 - 02:07 PM, said:

The characters more often than not feel artificial and irrelevant,

I think the main reason for this is that none of them stick around for very long (apart from Trahearne and Destiny's Edge . . . ). The people you personally meet, save, befriend and fight with are often around for less than a single 10-level arc, and you will never speak to them again afterwards. Meanwhile, you're stuck in the longterm with Trahearne and DE who have their own problems and sometimes interesting stories that take centre stage, but you're not really all that relevant to those stories. I never felt like I was personally making a difference in that area of the story. I was very much 'insert hero name/title here' placeholder material.

#53 Saleem

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 11:40 AM

View PostFaowri, on 12 February 2013 - 08:47 PM, said:

I think the main reason for this is that none of them stick around for very long (apart from Trahearne and Destiny's Edge . . . ). The people you personally meet, save, befriend and fight with are often around for less than a single 10-level arc, and you will never speak to them again afterwards. Meanwhile, you're stuck in the longterm with Trahearne and DE who have their own problems and sometimes interesting stories that take centre stage, but you're not really all that relevant to those stories. I never felt like I was personally making a difference in that area of the story. I was very much 'insert hero name/title here' placeholder material.

Yes the fact they don't stick around for long is a big part of the problem aswell that is for sure.
They also never get very personal with you which doesn't help either but that's normal since you barely have time to meet them...
and yes Trahearne is there longer but you simply can't really get attached to him at all ... i don't mind "Mary-Sue" characters if they are atleast endearing but he is just so unemotional, detached from everything and everyone, there's absolutely no fire in him at all... he feels just so artificial.
Also sure some missions had interesting concepts but they all felt so disconnected from each other and somewhat  forced into Zhaitan's plans.
It was rather awkward.
Also I might have been unlucky on my first run and gotten story chains that weren't the best perhaps... atleast not in the combination they ended up playing out.
I don't think they're writing team is bad though that said... they just don't always implent their stories well and it feels a bit clumsy and uncoordinated.T
here are some funny and witty dialogues (I had a good laugh with the sylvari whisper representative Cai on her missions)... also the mail you get after each completed heart quest is pretty awesome .. I've never seen many mmo have such good writing for side quest logs.

Edited by Saleem, 13 February 2013 - 11:45 AM.


#54 Asha2012

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 11:58 AM

Parts of the PS are okay but mine has been stuck on 76 forever.  Thinking of finishing it for the XP (SP earns), karma, coin, etc. or as a way to work on my daily/monthly.

I like Norn/human armors the best but I am loathe to create another human and have to go through the whole Shaemoor/Bandits non-sense.  Once the PS reaches Trinity things are a bit more relevant (at least you are into the Zhaitan part of the story).   Probably the best thing to do is to level up to 30 crafting, mapping and doing dailys and then just blow through the PS up to 30 for Orders Armor then abandon.

#55 Butr0sButr0s

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 03:56 PM

I've been level 80 for a while, but still haven't done the first mission of the personal story - the game keeps reminding me to "Explore the countryside: talk to Watchman Rebec".  I like playing my character as myself in online role playing games, and it breaks immersion when a character speaks for me (specially when they say something completely opposite to how I myself would react).

The good news is, even without any of the personal story I didn't have a problem leveling and there was more than enough content to keep me busy.

#56 Traveller

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 10:08 PM

View PostButr0sButr0s, on 13 February 2013 - 03:56 PM, said:

I like playing my character as myself in online role playing games, and it breaks immersion when a character speaks for me (specially when they say something completely opposite to how I myself would react).

This is actually my biggest problem with game storylines, especially with GW2 who boasts about its "personal story". What's personal is I can make a few choices which always lead me to the same point. Great. But what about all the times my character says things that I would never say or behaves like a complete moron? Okay, I understand you can't have free reign plot in a game, let alone a MMO. But don't pretend then that our choices matter or at least we have a choice. It's a plot railroad. On the second playthrough I just can't stand Trahearne any more and I make my silent protest by dancing naked while he has his "epic" speeches.

I had a similar problem in LoTRO as well, where I was incredibly annoyed that choices were made for me and then I got scolded and punished for them. Maybe I'm expecting too much from a game plot?

Edited by Traveller, 13 February 2013 - 10:10 PM.






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