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Shayne Hawke

Member Since 19 Aug 2009
Offline Last Active Yesterday, 01:00 PM

Topics I've Started

New legendary shortbow to be released, no more legendary weapons thereafter according t...

27 March 2016 - 07:28 PM

So Mike O'Brien has recently said this (emphasis my own):

Mike OBrien said:

In the upcoming Spring 2016 Quarterly Update, we’ll launch the new legendary short bow, Chuka and Champawat. The team outdid themselves on this one. This new precursor journey takes you through a memorable experience inspired by a real-world story, and the bow you craft at the end is the perfect commemoration of that journey. I hope you all check it out.

Last year we talked about plans to gradually build out a second set of legendary weapons through live content updates. That’s a big responsibility. We have a team of six developers working on that, who could work on it for years to come.

As game director I have to make tough trade-offs. One thing I believe is that we have to focus on the core game first before taking on additional responsibilities. I wrote in the Guild Wars 2 Design Manifesto in 2010 that our vision was to create a living, dynamic world, where there’s always something to do. Let’s ensure we succeed on that front.

So, after shipping Chuka and Champawat, I’ve asked that we indefinitely suspend work on new legendary weapons. This team of developers will instead shift their efforts back to Living World style content, building new journeys and events for everyone to participate in.

I know this will be a controversial decision. I’ll hang out with you here on the forums for a little while today to discuss it. And I’m always available by email.

I think that this decision and this statement is very illuminating on the state of the game and the nature of ANet.

First of all, new legendary weapons were a big selling point for HoT, a bulletpoint on the back of the box were there ever to be one.  People have said that they bought HoT specifically so they could get new legendaries, and I don't think it's incorrect to say that people have been expecting new legendaries to come into the game ever since we all saw the first set of them.  Certainly there have been enough artists at ANet to churn out new costumes and weapons on a mostly consistent, biweekly basis, and since legendary weapons are often not much more than the unique model + flair + effects that many unique shop weapons were like (see every DE 2.0 weapon), they could have done this at any time.  They chose to wait to release new ones until their first expansion that came over three years past release and advertised it as a selling point along with other legendary gear.  So far, only three legendary weapons and two legendary back pieces have come out.  After the new shortbow comes out though, there won't be any more legendary weapons.  Production will stop at a mere quarter of what ANet claimed they would be releasing.  This is in addition to the stunted release of legendary armor, which is tied to the raid wings that ANet have only been able to develop once per quarter.  Only after the last wing is released will there be any chance of legendary armor existing according to what is known by the public.  Legendary armor was a selling point too, and I can't imagine that people are satisfied with hearing that and only having available to them two back pieces, but at least MO hasn't come out to say that it's cut (he has, in fact, said the opposite).  It's just going to take a really, really long time for them to deliver on what you paid for, and by then, who knows what they'll present you?

Second, this is being presented as a trade-off, as something that by canceling, they can make significant improvements in another area.  Six people weren't getting what needed to be done done as far as legendary weapons go, but if we put their talents to use on, say, the Living World season 3.  There are lots of ways to interpret this:
  • Six people weren't enough to make the legendary journey for each legendary weapon in a reasonable time frame; or to put another way, the legendary journey system ANet conceived and planned to use for all future legendaries was too much work;
  • The Living World season 3 team is so small/inept and/or the scope is so large that six more people are going to make a big difference in its release;
  • ANet can't afford, attract, or find the talent to fill work that needs done;
  • ANet thinks the community is not very interested in legendary weapons; or, ANet thinks the community is really interested in Living World season 3; or ANet thinks the community really prefers Living World season 3 over new legendary weapons; AND ANet thinks the community will accept the loss of future legendary weapons as a way for Living World season 3 to be developed in an appropriate and timely fashion (or at least better than its current course);
  • Same as the last point, except replace "Living World season 3" with any other team not mentioned (like the team working on the next expansion);

Take your pick.  I honestly can't find a way to hash this that makes ANet look good in any way.  Maybe if you still trust them as a business, you can look at this as a restructuring that will make them do more efficient work, though I don't know where you can draw that sense of trust from.

Thirdly, the manifesto is suddenly important!  Nevermind all the times when people said that Guild Wars 2 didn't actually have everything about Guild Wars that people liked.  Nevermind all those times that people pointed out how grindy it would be to get their new ascended gear.  Nevermind that the phrase "Living World" didn't even exist as a phrase in ANet's vocabulary up to and during the initial release.  If ANet can reference something they said about their game in 2010 that has an incomplete-at-best relation to their game today and successfully virtue signal you into believing that their manifesto was always, still is, and will be not merely their goal, but everything they are, then you are a lost cause.

If I were writing this when the thread first came out, I would stop here, but since then, MO has gone on to say a few things.

Mike OBrien said:

you each posted a variant of an accusation I’ve seen many times over the past few months on the forums, something along the lines of, “AN shipped half an expansion with HoT.” I take issue with that. We shipped a new region full of content, a new mastery system, gliding, guild halls, a new profession, nine new elite specializations for existing professions, and more. Then we shipped precursor journeys for existing legendaries, and said, “We’ve been working hard on new legendary weapons, the first handful of which will be introduced in Heart of Thorns, with more to come in subsequent updates.” While I fully get that you’re disappointed today, this is not about us shipping half an expansion pack.

It's true that HoT came with a lot of stuff that ANet did deliver on.  That's not the point.  The point is that ANet said they would deliver in excess of what they have released.  They said 16 legendary weapons were coming, but now there will only be four.  They said there would be raiding and legendary armor, but it didn't come at release and won't be all done until likely a year afterwards.  Living World season 3 was said to be coming out, and you can either look at this as something that didn't come with the expansion (which means expansion features are getting cut to work on things not related to the expansion), or this is still another case of features being claimed as part of the expansion that weren't ready on release and are taking a long time to come out.

What would the alternative to be?  Don't say that legendary armor or raids were going to be features of HoT.  Don't say there are going to be 16 new legendary weapons when there are only going to be three.  Don't say there's a new Living World season when it doesn't exist yet.  I'm sure someone who still plays this game can probably remember where there were more features that were claimed to be released with HoT or in the months after, but either didn't materialize at the start or totally flopped (WvW).  But if you "cut" all those features by not claiming they will be part of the expansion, will it sell as well as you want it to?  Doubtfully, but I'm certain ANet has identified since a long time ago that their playerbase can be so hyped full of hot air that they don't even need gliders to travel the Maguuma.

Mike OBrien said:

I strongly believe that we will in fact entertain you. We’re a team of people who love the game that you love, and are working on things we’re confident you’ll love. But I’m not here to convince you of that, and I wouldn’t expect you to take my word for it. You can make that judgment in April, and each subsequent time we ship. I will work to make you happy, and I’ll do it by making you happy with what we ship, not with what we promise to ship.

That would be great, except this whole topic is about something that was claimed to ship, not something that did ship.  Nobody needs to wait until April to pass judgment on that.  The only concern that ANet needs to be worried about now is whether people will remember and care about this once they start talking about their next expansion.  This is not the first time that ANet has delivered something different from their claim (re: manifesto), and it won't be their last unless people wise up to what's going on.

Gigantic

11 November 2014 - 11:47 PM

Official site: http://www.gogigantic.com/

New shooter being developed by Motiga, a relatively new studio that's got some old names from ANet such as James Phinney and Katy Hargrove.

Why don't people like Activities?

19 March 2014 - 01:00 AM

Over the past month or so, I've spent a lot of time playing Sanctum Sprint, making an effort on my own part to see how fast I can finish the race.  In that time, I've witnessed a lot of something that I've seen happen in the other activities - people don't stick around.  Over the course of one match, the room might fill up to have ten or more people participating.  Once the match finishes though, everybody evacuates, save for perhaps a couple people.  This is clearly from people coming in just to get their daily requirement.  If people do stay at the end of a match, I typically won't see them play more than three or four matches in a row.

This leads me to believe that many people don't see value in playing activities (referring for now only to those within the daily rotation).  When people see value in something, they invest into it, either with their time or their money.  There's no way to invest money into activities, so if people think playing an activity is worthwhile, they'll spend their time playing it.  It would seem then that the only value that most people can find in playing activities is to get the easy participation award for their dailies, because again, they come in for one match, it ends and gives them their daily, and then they leave.  If there were no daily requirement for doing activities, such as during previous achievement systems where doing things in Keg Brawl would only sometimes show up, then very few people would end up playing them at all.  Any regulars to Keg Brawl back in the day would have noticed this as well.

It's not to say that activities have no value to people outside of their daily achievement, but perhaps they don't have enough value.  If time is the only means to invest into activities, then there must be other things which are a better use of their time.  Or, perhaps some people have so little time to spare that they feel compelled to do other things that are more time-sensitive, such as anything time-gated.  In the first place, what makes activities such a poor use of people's time?  Is the demand for coin and karma so great that the paltry participation rewards aren't good enough?  Are the games just not fun somehow?  Is the problem not with the activities being un-fun or worthless, but instead with heavy pressure being placed on doing other things in the game over some span of time?

I'd like to hear what people here think of activities and why they themselves or others don't spend more time with them.  Specifics on each activity are okay, but I'm really looking for an answer on the general scope.  I could give my own spiel on why I think Sanctum Sprint isn't drawing in a bigger or better crowd, but that's a topic for another time.

Sanctum Sprint in three minutes.

12 July 2013 - 01:50 AM

Because being a good racer in Rollerbeetle Racing is no longer in style.



I have no love left for ANet, but I could not pass up an opportunity at another racing minigame.  There may be no leaderboard and no reason to compete for time, but that doesn't mean I can't push for the fastest time I can manage.

For those of you out there who are struggling to finish, I hope this offers a guide on how to play (where to go, where to use skills, etc).  Those of you who are fast can take this and do it better, because this is by no means perfect.

If anyone wants to ask questions about SS or start a discussion about it here, I'll entertain responding.

Inconsistency in chest reset?

01 April 2013 - 12:16 AM

Today, I looted the chest at the end of Weyandt's Revenge with nine of my characters.  I did this all at least two hours prior to today's reset of dailies.  Now, when I log onto each of my nine characters, I find that only one of these characters had the chance to loot the chest again.  The chest is already open for the rest of these characters.

I was under the impression that all chests had been moved to reset at a specific time of day each day for all characters, but it seems that this either is untrue or working inconsistently.

Is anyone else experiencing this sort of trouble with the chests?