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#1 MazingerZ

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 05:35 PM

https://forum-en.gui...Evolution/first

This I take a bit of an issue with.  Its one thing to solicit information on classes.  Its another to probably ask for help on dungeon design.  It's like a gamemaster asking his players how to make encounters more challenging.  There's feedback and then there's actually asking for proposals.

The gamemaster is supposed to have a deeper level of knowledge about constructing challenges and encounters and be aware of how players are leveraging their tools to beat the previous challenges.  ArenaNet's not just the gamemaster, but they made the rules and can change the rules.  To a certain extent, they should have a very good idea of what to do, but CDIs like this betray... if not a total lack of understanding in how to design their game, a severe disconnect on how their players are playing the game.
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!"

#2 Desild

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 05:55 PM

You can give a Game Developer a Dungeon Master's Handbook, but it doesn't mean they will come up with Gygax-level content. This little parade just hammers that point through.

Maybe something good will come out of this?

#3 Konzacelt

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 06:13 PM

View PostDesild, on 25 February 2014 - 05:55 PM, said:

You can give a Game Developer a Dungeon Master's Handbook, but it doesn't mean they will come up with Gygax-level content. This little parade just hammers that point through.

Maybe something good will come out of this?

Interesting fact: Jeff Grubb worked with Gygax briefly in 1983.  Still waiting to see if something good comes out of that. ;)

#4 Gyre

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 06:21 PM

My take is that most of the fractals are actually just fine as is.  Dredge should be removed from the game, it's deeply flawed just by design.  The newer ones (Aetherblade, Molten, Thaumanova) aren't really representative of tier 2/3 difficulty relative to others you can draw in their brackets and feel rushed to me.  Boss fractal Aetherblade/Molten are perfect, along with everything else, don't touch these.

I don't think Anet actually plays these and if they do certainly not in the 41-50 range.  In fact I'd love it if someone would put it to Whiteside that staff had to beat Dredge 49 without using stealth on the control panel section.  That's not to say it can't be done I just don't think they are capable of doing it.  At least playtesting content might help understand player frustration with it and why just maybe there is a problem.

Thread itself looks like massive posts of people just talking over each other.  I wonder how many of them actually run fractals every day.

#5 gw2guruaccount

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 06:55 PM

A game that listens to it's players and holds open discussions on it's forums? What is this, LoL?

#6 Konzacelt

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 06:58 PM

View Postgw2guruaccount, on 25 February 2014 - 06:55 PM, said:

A game that listens to it's players and holds open discussions on it's forums? What is this, LoL?

Listening isn't the same thing as farming ideas.

#7 gw2guruaccount

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 07:17 PM

View PostKonzacelt, on 25 February 2014 - 06:58 PM, said:

Listening isn't the same thing as farming ideas.
What is the difference? Maintaining and monitoring forums then covertly taking into account suggestions is just as underhanded as overtly doing so.

#8 Desild

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 07:42 PM

View Postgw2guruaccount, on 25 February 2014 - 06:55 PM, said:

A game that listens to it's players and holds open discussions on it's forums? What is this, LoL?

Not sure if your implying this is a bad thing... Do you know who else also consults the players for it's development? Amplitude. I like Amplitude. They made a good 4X game.

#9 MazingerZ

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 07:43 PM

View Postgw2guruaccount, on 25 February 2014 - 07:17 PM, said:

What is the difference? Maintaining and monitoring forums then covertly taking into account suggestions is just as underhanded as overtly doing so.

Passive inspiration vs active solicitation?

It's one thing to listen to people fob off on the forums, its another to try and pick their brains and have them organize their ideas in an easily reviewable format for you to file away in lieu any originality on your part?
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 Konzacelt

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 07:51 PM

^ Wut he said

#11 gw2guruaccount

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 07:52 PM

View PostMazingerZ, on 25 February 2014 - 07:43 PM, said:

Passive inspiration vs active solicitation?

It's one thing to listen to people fob off on the forums, its another to try and pick their brains and have them organize their ideas in an easily reviewable format for you to file away in lieu any originality on your part?

I'm a fan of transparency. I'd rather the company admit they are performing these "CDI"s rather than covertly picking and choosing what they want to deal with.

View PostDesild, on 25 February 2014 - 07:42 PM, said:

Not sure if your implying this is a bad thing... Do you know who else also consults the players for it's development? Amplitude. I like Amplitude. They made a good 4X game.

It isn't a bad thing at all. A lot of games and studios do this. Pointing it out is a form of cherrypicking behavior when you don't like something or someone. It's sort of like accusing Pizza Hut of being unethical for changing their crust recipe because they asked in a poll what people liked and calling them dishonest while saying nothing about Papa John's who took modeling data on their most popular reactions and used it.

Edited by gw2guruaccount, 25 February 2014 - 07:54 PM.


#12 Veji

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 08:32 PM

View PostMazingerZ, on 25 February 2014 - 05:35 PM, said:

https://forum-en.gui...Evolution/first

This I take a bit of an issue with.  Its one thing to solicit information on classes.  Its another to probably ask for help on dungeon design.  It's like a gamemaster asking his players how to make encounters more challenging.  There's feedback and then there's actually asking for proposals.

The gamemaster is supposed to have a deeper level of knowledge about constructing challenges and encounters and be aware of how players are leveraging their tools to beat the previous challenges.  ArenaNet's not just the gamemaster, but they made the rules and can change the rules.  To a certain extent, they should have a very good idea of what to do, but CDIs like this betray... if not a total lack of understanding in how to design their game, a severe disconnect on how their players are playing the game.

Yeah, see, i agree and i disagree and heres why:  I agree that they are doing a good job by requesting feedback in an organized format, so that they can better deciminate the information and poach the good ideas to craft content for the game.  Thats cool, if and only if, the person presenting the idea gets credit for the idea.

I disagree with the CDI format, because chances are, they won't credit the armchair dev or poster who comes up with something brilliant, that they actually make into a fractal or poach an idea from.

TO be honest, the entire approach makes it "feel" like they're being lazy and they don't want to deciminate the information people are posting or even be bothered to read through it.  I get what they are going for, but i think the method in which they are using is a bit terribad,.  If they really want to make changes, heres what i'd do:  I'd contact like 10-15 of the really good posters that have well formulated ideas and pay them to play test and provide ideas.  Make them contractors and set project goals and expected deliverables on the feedback, then dev some stuff up and have them test, rinse, and repeat.

I thought this iss what playtesters get paid for, but apparently, they get a biased opinion being paid by the company to test the product, so why not contract the positions to the gamers who are putting their time and energy into the forums AAAAND who won't be afraid to express a bad opinion of something?

Not that i want the job, as i have a RL job that takes up more than enough of my time.  I think something like this should a 20hr per week position that pays slightly better than minimum wage, because who wouldn't want a part time job for playing a game they'd be playing in their spare time, anyhow?

#13 Nikephoros

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 03:55 PM

No one has addressed the main issue with fractals: even at the highest available levels it is casual and too easy for pugs.  There is no encounter like Lupicus that provides anything resembling a skill or coordination barrier so plenty of bads happily brute force wipe-kill-wipe-kill repeat their way through level 50 every day.

I am not saying to turn it into river-of-tears difficulty but right now I can go to twitch.tv and find some awful pug of WvW players in soldier gear with ranged weapons doing fractal 50 with cringe-worthy tactics and absolutely no coordination and no obvious signs of understanding what they are doing.  It's embarrassing when the premier end game pve content is completed by people who would struggle to do Ascalonian Catacombs Path 2 without half a dozen wipes.

#14 Desild

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 04:03 PM

View PostNikephoros, on 26 February 2014 - 03:55 PM, said:

No one has addressed the main issue with fractals: even at the highest available levels it is casual and too easy for pugs.  There is no encounter like Lupicus that provides anything resembling a skill or coordination barrier so plenty of bads happily brute force wipe-kill-wipe-kill repeat their way through level 50 every day.

You're kidding right? You have to be. Did you missed the patch in which one of the Fractal instabilities outright KILLS YOU if you use an Elite Skill? Or the one that converts boons in to conditions all the time? And you call it casual?

At level 40+ Mossman will literaly one-shot half your team with a single attack unless you coordinate your skills Walls of Reflection.

#15 MazingerZ

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 04:13 PM

View PostNikephoros, on 26 February 2014 - 03:55 PM, said:

I am not saying to turn it into river-of-tears difficulty but right now I can go to twitch.tv and find some awful pug of WvW players in soldier gear with ranged weapons doing fractal 50 with cringe-worthy tactics and absolutely no coordination and no obvious signs of understanding what they are doing.  It's embarrassing when the premier end game pve content is completed by people who would struggle to do Ascalonian Catacombs Path 2 without half a dozen wipes.

Game is for the LCD, not for your l33tsauce.  People won't play a game where content is being generated for the top 10%, and their dollars dwarf yours.
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!"

#16 Nikephoros

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 04:20 PM

View PostMazingerZ, on 26 February 2014 - 04:13 PM, said:

Game is for the LCD, not for your l33tsauce.  People won't play a game where content is being generated for the top 10%, and their dollars dwarf yours.

You're right.  No game has ever added challenging end game content and been successful.

View PostDesild, on 26 February 2014 - 04:03 PM, said:

You're kidding right? You have to be. Did you missed the patch in which one of the Fractal instabilities outright KILLS YOU if you use an Elite Skill? Or the one that converts boons in to conditions all the time? And you call it casual?

At level 40+ Mossman will literaly one-shot half your team with a single attack unless you coordinate your skills Walls of Reflection.

And mossman can be killed by range-kiting with no coordination by aforementioned bads.  

and some of those instabilities are frustrating for sure, but also beaten through brute force, or simply skipped over for easier ones.  I really don't think someone avoiding to use their Elite sKill is a great display of skill.

Again, people regularly (I see them stream it every day) complete Fractal 50 in groups that wouldn't be able to beat ACp2 in under 45 minutes, let alone any Arah path.

#17 MazingerZ

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 04:25 PM

View PostNikephoros, on 26 February 2014 - 04:20 PM, said:

You're right.  No game has ever added challenging end game content and been successful.

Game's already under fire for generating scant amounts of shallow content and ignoring the big 3 sections of the player-base in turn... PvE, WvW and PvP.  They're not going to focus on the top 10% of PvE unless you're willing to throw down the dollars outside of the people purchasing cosmetic bells and whistles.  Giving you challenging content has a small ROI.
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!"

#18 Nikephoros

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 04:40 PM

View PostMazingerZ, on 26 February 2014 - 04:25 PM, said:

Game's already under fire for generating scant amounts of shallow content and ignoring the big 3 sections of the player-base in turn... PvE, WvW and PvP.  They're not going to focus on the top 10% of PvE unless you're willing to throw down the dollars outside of the people purchasing cosmetic bells and whistles.  Giving you challenging content has a small ROI.

That sounds like a pathetic cop out.  Fractals exist already.  They are soliciting ideas for improvement.  Seems like I am not crazy for suggesting an idea to make them what they are already intended to be: end game content with a progression element.

They are supposed to have some kind of progression element, yet there is no real skill progression needed, just some crappy gear gating.

#19 Konzacelt

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 04:44 PM

View PostNikephoros, on 26 February 2014 - 04:40 PM, said:

That sounds like a pathetic cop out.  Fractals exist already.  They are soliciting ideas for improvement.  Seems like I am not crazy for suggesting an idea to make them what they are already intended to be: end game content with a progression element.

They are supposed to have some kind of progression element, yet there is no real skill progression needed, just some crappy gear gating.

Uhh...Fractals were intended to have skill progression?  That's a new one.

#20 MazingerZ

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 04:48 PM

View PostNikephoros, on 26 February 2014 - 04:40 PM, said:

That sounds like a pathetic cop out.  Fractals exist already.  They are soliciting ideas for improvement.  Seems like I am not crazy for suggesting an idea to make them what they are already intended to be: end game content with a progression element.

They are supposed to have some kind of progression element, yet there is no real skill progression needed, just some crappy gear gating.

Fractals exist because they needed a gated item grind 2 months after release.  You yourself say "even at the highest available levels it is casual and too easy for pugs."  They're soliciting ideas to add to the content.  Don't kid yourself.  Unless there's an overwhelming amount of support to up the difficulty.  Even then, expect a token increase, because they don't want to alienate a good portion of their player-base.  This game is not going to bring back the halcyon days of TBC where Heroic Dungeons could easily wipe a pug group.

Edited by MazingerZ, 26 February 2014 - 04:49 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!"

#21 gw2guruaccount

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 05:18 PM

View PostDesild, on 26 February 2014 - 04:03 PM, said:

You're kidding right? You have to be. Did you missed the patch in which one of the Fractal instabilities outright KILLS YOU if you use an Elite Skill? Or the one that converts boons in to conditions all the time? And you call it casual?

At level 40+ Mossman will literaly one-shot half your team with a single attack unless you coordinate your skills Walls of Reflection.
You are clearly not hardcore enough. lol In WoW if a superboss so much as raises an eyebrow the entire server dies. GW2 is weaksauce!

#22 gw2guruaccount

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 05:27 PM

View PostMazingerZ, on 26 February 2014 - 04:13 PM, said:

Game is for the LCD, not for your l33tsauce.  People won't play a game where content is being generated for the top 10%, and their dollars dwarf yours.
Plenty of people play LoL. Riot is renown for making it's re-balances around he top players. It's actually the proper way to do it. All MOBAs do this. So an entire genre is based off that model.

#23 MazingerZ

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 05:39 PM

View Postgw2guruaccount, on 26 February 2014 - 05:27 PM, said:

Plenty of people play LoL. Riot is renown for making it's re-balances around he top players. It's actually the proper way to do it. All MOBAs do this. So an entire genre is based off that model.

Not even remotely comparable.  LoL's methods of providing challenge are largely external...  They rely on a match-up system (that they're still working on) to provide a challenging experience.  Their only contribution is largely champion mechanics, which are balanced theoretically between all champions, so players have equally viable paths to victory against the challenge level selected for them by the match-up system.  Additionally, the rewards in the game (specifically IP) are not scaled by how high your internal match-up values are, whereas rewards are comparatively greater as you move up the Fractal levels.

Edited by MazingerZ, 26 February 2014 - 05:40 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!"

#24 Nikephoros

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 05:41 PM

View PostKonzacelt, on 26 February 2014 - 04:44 PM, said:

Uhh...Fractals were intended to have skill progression?  That's a new one.

It was supposed to get more difficult as the levels increased.  It didn't.  If you aren't good at the game it will take longer to complete each level but there is no true increase in difficulty.

The only time there is a real difficulty change is when the bosses first start doing agony mechanics, but by high levels that is irrelevant because the attacks themselves are hard hitting enough that the agony element is trivial compared to the direct damage.  It would be significantly better if the bosses got new mechanics at each level, more complex attack patterns etc.  They took the easy way out and just upped their HP and their Power, which isn't really what I would call more difficult.

#25 MazingerZ

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 05:44 PM

View PostNikephoros, on 26 February 2014 - 05:41 PM, said:

If you aren't good at the game it will take longer to complete each level

And thus it served its intended purpose.  The concept of it getting more difficult is false.  It was supposed to enhance the shallow treadmill.

Edited by MazingerZ, 26 February 2014 - 05:47 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!"

#26 Nikephoros

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 06:15 PM

I understand that you get off on being a contrarian, but what are you arguing for?  You clearly aren't happy with them as they are (shallow treadmill) but you're also arguing with me against making them actually interesting.  Take a position or don't, but now you're just sorta lingering around being a complainer.

#27 MazingerZ

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 06:26 PM

View PostNikephoros, on 26 February 2014 - 06:15 PM, said:

I understand that you get off on being a contrarian, but what are you arguing for?  You clearly aren't happy with them as they are (shallow treadmill) but you're also arguing with me against making them actually interesting.  Take a position or don't, but now you're just sorta lingering around being a complainer.

My point is that they won't do it because its not in line with their values, which isn't making a challenging game, but making a game that'll appeal to the broadest audience possible and thereby expand their micro-t customer base.  The mobile game model.

There are no metrics linking 'challenging game' with 'increased revenue' in the micro-transaction market, but there are probably metrics linking game difficulty to player retention.

If you look at the last 1.5 years, their focus has been primarily to a broad PvE experience, challenge and difficulty be damned.  Yeah, they released some World Boss Events that are challenging, but only in the 'cat herding' sense, not the small group dynamics sense, which is a format that forces player exclusion.

My point being, they develop for broad appeal at the lowest expense.  As nice as it would be for them to do it, its not going to happen without some alternative path to the same rewards in Fractals.  They do not want to reduce player retention by developing for a small part of the population.

I advocate for challenging content, but to dollars and cents, ArenaNet's not going to do anything like that, at least not without alternative paths that trivialize your accomplishment to only epeen displays.  And since those displays are not something worth monetizing, they take a lower priority to just maintaining broad appeal and broad player retention.

Edited by MazingerZ, 26 February 2014 - 06:47 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!"

#28 Kymeric

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 07:15 PM

In response to the OP, I even balked at "Which professsion needs the most help?"  This doesn't seem like the kind of intricate analysis that might come up with surprising results when you take the time to poll the player base.  I'd expect anyone remotely involved with game design at ArenaNet to have a pretty good grip on where the professions are relative to the main areas of the game, and how the player base feels about them.

I'm not sure it's the active vs. hidden information gathering that's the real reason the CDI process feels weird.  I think it goes back to the relatively one sided nature of them.  ArenaNet is so careful to keep reminding us that they can not comment on their plans and what is or is not in development.  That makes the "conversation" essentially the same as the countless feedback posts players create completely independent of the CDI process with the exception of the occasional guiding question and "Ooh, that's interesting" comment from the developers.

Which means if they were just paying a minimum of attention to regular forum traffic, it'd be functionally the same thing.  They really don't need a vote on which profession(s) is/are in the most need of work, nor what the glaring problems are with Rangers because it's all spelled out there repeatedly over the last year and a half in the professions, WvW, PvP, and general fora.  The same goes for Fractals.

Where it gets weird is when they start asking for feedback without really giving us a glimpse of what they're thinking.  They take a seemingly active role, but it doesn't amount to anything.  It starts to feel like talking to a therapist who can't break the habit of staying aloof and constantly redirecting the conversation back to you.

We expect that developers read fora to keep a sense of the pulse of the player base.  We expect them to use that information in their deliberations over how to improve the game.  But when they set up a one-sided "conversation", it starts to feel like they have no independent thought, and are hoping the players will design the game for them.  I'm not saying that's true, just that it feels that way because of what CDIs are.  Passionate commitment to feedback on the part of players.  Careful, non-committal posts by ArenaNet.

And yet, it seems to have worked for some.  I keep running across, "how refreshing to have developers who really engage the community" posts by players in reference to the CDI.

#29 Gyre

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 08:43 PM

View PostNikephoros, on 26 February 2014 - 04:20 PM, said:

Again, people regularly (I see them stream it every day) complete Fractal 50 in groups that wouldn't be able to beat ACp2 in under 45 minutes, let alone any Arah path.

There is no reason to run fractal 50 at all. Fractal 49 is on farm status and the reason why is the way the bracketing system is handled, it runs 41-50.  Those people have absolutely no clue what they are doing or just feel like showing off their expensive 70AR for 1% ticks.

#30 Nikephoros

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 08:51 PM

I personally find 50 to be a little bit faster than 49 due to the 49 mistlock making some fights with a lot of dodging a bit longer.  But I only run with perfect group comps, and that is easier to assemble with 55 AR rather than 75.   But yeah, watching people who aren't good at PvE at all doing fractals is doubly painful, its bad watching them play like crap and its bad watching the crappy play not matter at all.




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