This is part of the reason why when Blizzard advances to the next tier, they make getting gear equitable to the previous tier easy to get while leaving the unique rewards and achievements in the previous raid instance locked behind the timer. They realized any players hitting end-game would not only have a hard time finding groups for the old content (though I'm not sure if LFR replaced adding new loot) but would be forever behind due to raid lockouts.
As far as the second point, ArenaNet can do this one of two ways... Raise the level cap and invalidate the desire fore crafting level 80 Ascended gear (the 'expansion reset button') or they'll lift the restrictions at a point where it doesn't matter (though without a level cap increase, I can't see any other way they can retain players in the current environment). And when they lift the restrictions, it'll be heralded as 'ArenaNet is listening!' rather than the money-driven retention policy it was.
A lot of people have already written Ascended off and a subset of those stopped playing the instant they did. There's honestly nothing but entropic decay on the current path.
A level increase would be more likely then because it'll defeat the purpose of ascended gear being the gap between exotics and legendaries, and also make them lose regular player log ins, if they lift the restriction to it. With a level cap increase they can make multitude of excuses to quell the dissent. Like players needing to learn biggers numbers of the same thing or something in a new zone... I can never understand how WoW pulls that off.
Although a lot of people have already wirtten off Ascended and I'm sure there are still many left who are on the fence. Moreover, ANet have not amended their Manifesto and their Oath Campaign has me thinking that they'll continue to advertise the same ideas they marketed before launch. This means that many new players will join the game under the impression that ascended gear, and their method of acquisition, doesn't exist in GW2.
because they cant see. All they know is what was done in other games they played. Apparently most of them grew up and learnt VP as the model and since the light that is shining in their eyes is so bright - they cant see.
It explains the contempt for GW and the complete transition of what was good. That usually gets codified into a company but it seems that the new people simply have little regard for those we came before and the lessons they learned.
So they are left without boundaries and a bright light in their eyes. They only know VP and what their gaming experience taught them.
That is my explanation : they simply cant see.
Balancing via scaling numbers was probably a wet dream for Izzy and the PvE designers because it boils down to changing numbers or the frequency of skills. It's low risk design that gives an impression of change. That's why nearly all of the class rebalance patches have mostly been tweaking numbers rather than fixing skills that are fundamentally broken (stealth, conditions, and pets for instance). Conquest mode reflects this in that its game mode is a dps/sustain race. That is to say, the only thing that matters about most skills is how their numbers relate to success, not the method of application nor the active counters (It seems that ANet believes counters are best left as passive abilities that completely nullify).
I might be presumptuous in saying that but I'm sure anyone who's taken the lower classes of advanced math can pull off this level balancing just as well. It beggers belief that the apparent cost of rebalancing is reason enough so little about their broken PvP.
When you think about it the only thing the players "learn" through their leveling is that numbers get bigger. The enemy design doesn't evolve or change as you level up, but they do more damage and have higher health. This might by why combat in the open world feels so samey, though it ends up moot because of how worthwile content devolves into zergfests because of the player "mass." Even in dungeons enemies feel like progressively bigger DPS sponges.
Edited by Featherman, 18 December 2013 - 02:25 PM.