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baal80

Member Since 27 Apr 2012
Offline Last Active Mar 20 2013 12:40 PM

#2177057 I'm trying really hard to like this game

Posted Menrva on 09 March 2013 - 08:02 PM

I was perhaps thinking about giving this game another go because I know I haven't given this game the fairest chance - I mean I only played for perhaps the first 2-3 weeks and haven't logged in since! Truth be told, I really wanted to like this game but for a number of reasons I wasn't enjoying myself so I just stopped playing. To begin with, Lv 1-30 PvE was agonisingly dull, the story was corny, "tacked on" and the crafting system felt like a big grind. I'm not sure if any of this gets better or not. Some of the main quests were incredibly difficult for my Mesmer character (or perhaps I just suck!) and so progress felt very slow indeed. I sort of wished I was playing with someone else, either join a guild or something because Guild Wars 2 felt like quite a lonely experience. PvP felt like such a step backwards from the original Guilds Wars and WvW was too chaotic for my personal enjoyment. My computer couldn't handle all the stuff going on the screen! Again I'm not sure if things have quitened down a bit, or whether it is still a zergfest.

I know my opinion isn't going to mean much. I followed this game for years, so I'm very suprised I dropped this game as quickly as I did. I believed in the hype, and I think had I gone into this game with no expectations (like with the original Guild Wars, which to be quite frank wasn't that great either) I wouldn't have been so sorely disappointed.


#2175459 I'm trying really hard to like this game

Posted Millimidget on 06 March 2013 - 11:57 AM

View Postraspberry jam, on 05 March 2013 - 08:57 AM, said:

Civilization V to take a completely different genre, it almost feels like a waste of disk space.
That's saying alot, because CiV actually is a waste of disc space. CIV, on the other hand, was a terrific game.


View Postaspi, on 05 March 2013 - 05:51 PM, said:

And Skyrim is utterly boring with a big world full of nothing.
I take it you're not big on exploring game worlds.


#2174408 I'm trying really hard to like this game

Posted omar316 on 04 March 2013 - 12:24 PM

View PostRickter, on 03 March 2013 - 07:59 PM, said:

^this

i was gw2 heavy about 2 months ago for a good 3 months or so but i got a new job and had to focus on that.  i wasnt really able to play so i dropped off but now im back with a new profession and really feeling the fire again.

never paid a dime during that hiatus and good ol gw2 was waiting for me like a loving mother.

i dont try to like this game it is CLEARLY the best and most perfect mmorpg on the market atm moment.  WoW is catering to the asian market and hath forsaketh thine westerners, swtor is a TOTAL joke right now, seriously i logged in two weeks ago to check out the f2p nonsense and its really sad folks like those people playing that game KNOW its dead and when i called it out they said: we got our money's worth, TESO is a joke, watch gameplay, clearly has a long ways to go, rift is a good contender but the storyline and game world are just uninspired, and defiance is a shooter so reference planetside2. oh and the secret world is copying gw2 model of obvious reasons.

gw2 is the new golden standard folks, betterget on board.

gw2 is the best mmorpg on the market, if you dont want to acknowledge that you are in straight up denial.

GW2 is hardly a golden standard. Anything stardard about it is its prolonged grind of anything.
There is nothing in game which doesn't get accomplished without grind.
Everything screams simplicity and uninspired common crap.

Most of the guildies who left for gw2 are back on swtor or some other games and they all say the same thing; I already grinded the same crap for my end game gear, I just want to have some fun not bore myself to death with more grind.


#2170717 I'm trying really hard to like this game

Posted Dasviidonja on 26 February 2013 - 06:20 AM

View PostDeConstruct, on 25 February 2013 - 03:35 PM, said:

That's the thing though, you really do those things purely for your own satisfaction. They do not help you progress in the game, nor do they provide any meaningful challenge. You just go through the motions. Commonly referred to as a grind.

The "bored" players are expecting the game to react to their input. You could even substitute game by players if you are provided the right environments. In an MMO you typically have both sides. Challenging PvE content that takes a certain amount of skill to master and rewards you accordingly. And challenging PvP content. Whether it be literal fighting against eachother or competition on vanity items and cosmetics. Sadly the game has about a month's worth of content that meets these expectations. The combat system doesn't allow for the depth desired, and the item/cosmetic system fails to appeal to ones' vanity.

You mention it yourself, the almost compulsion to have things complete. The term OCD refers to this as a disorder for a reason. It is man's nature to do those things that provide tangible benefits. Ask a guy whether he would repaint an object no one would ever look at. He says no. Ask a guy the same thing, but now tell him he'll be judged by his peers and the answer will be different.

To simplify it, the bored players are missing carrots on the end of their sticks.

For me personally, the very notion of doing something daily to get to a disputable reward months down the line, disturbs me. If I cant use it to be better at the game or to show it off, there is no point in it for me. And even then the reward needs to be worth the time invested. You would think legendary items would be the ultimate carrot. But instead legendary owners are met with pity and the graphics attached are experienced as a hindrance.

Hope this helps you to "just understand there's nothing to do past 80" sentiment.

That ^ is one of the best posts I ever read describing what it's like in GW2. It just feels incomplete and boredom sets in early.
For me one of the big main problems is they tossed us a big bone in GW1 with heroes and coming to this game from that one with no sidekicks, no henchies, no heroes, no nuthin just made the game like a step backwards. I miss outfitting my heroes with skills and trying them out in certain areas. This was suppose to be GW2 not something out of leftfield.


#2005694 Social Failure?

Posted Zero_Soulreaver on 09 October 2012 - 02:42 PM

View Postdandelions, on 09 October 2012 - 02:19 PM, said:

OP, I cannot agree more. I feel pretty much the same way. Was just chatting to my brother about this a couple hours ago, and I honestly think I'm through with mmos. And like you, I have played mmos in the past and the community was a lot better. In fact I'm not sure if I could say that what exists now is a community. The most recent mmo I played before this was wow, and I had similar issues there, but I put it down to it being wow, and a large playerbase, and a pvp server. GW2 is not as bad I think, though still suffers from large playerbase thing.

I am gonna be an arsehole here, but honest, and say that I think the problem *for me* is playing on servers with too many non english speakers (timezone) and americans. I don't really get american humour. I don't find memes or boring repeated cliches in any way amusing or witty. I don't find trolling people, because you think it is in some way clever, actually clever at all. I'm not a fan of boasting or people talking about skill when it is not backed up by anything most of the time. I think the country in many ways is quite sick, and has produced a sick culture. If you actually care about the USA, you would probably agree.

I don't blame you, I don't get popular American humor and I am American.  Memes are so freaking annoying and not even funny.   They are shoved down people's throats all the time and I just sit there like "really your laughing at that?"  Our humor is not creative anymore and it's rather depressing.  People latch on to 1 joke and kill it to death.  I miss the old days where people were actually creative with their jokes.


#2114819 Where has everyone gone?

Posted Sonann on 11 December 2012 - 05:18 PM

I was one of the people looking forward to GW2. I prepurchased from Gamestop long before the official pre-order even opened. After playing about a month I left. I still check up on Guru and my Guild's site to see if/when improvements have been made to bring me back. I feel screwed out of $120 (me and my wife), for a game that nosedived. I don't see why people even play now, but if they enjoy it... I have nothing bad to say about them. I was all in through all the BWE and excited to play, then it got stale for me and focus on the cash shop over the core of the game drove me off. I still have hopes things will get better, if they do I'll be back. To me, all the currently running MMOs are stale or garbage to begin with, but GW2 has the most potential to be a great game and grab the #1 spot.


#2113294 Where has everyone gone?

Posted DuskWolf on 10 December 2012 - 02:07 AM

View PostRickter, on 10 December 2012 - 01:52 AM, said:

and thats all there is to it.
Except it isn't. You just want a walled garden where everyone is wearing rose-tinted glasses and no one ever has to worry about cognitive dissonance over their purchases. I was as passionate as anyone about the ideals. I am completely let down on the execution. GW2 is a WoW also-ran with some minor cosmetic differences. It's all smoke and mirrors, magic tricks, and flim-flammery. The dodge-roll even is a joke, since it doesn't help at all. Spatial awareness matters a hell of a lot more in CO even than GW2. It's just yet another WoW clone.

And whether you think it's poisonous or not doesn't matter. Somewhere, we should be allowed to say that we feel betrayed because we were promised something that wasn't a WoW clone. We should be allowed to say that we want MMOs to really evolve and leave the WoW model behind. We should be allowed to say that we feel that GW2 is stuck in the old ways. We should be allowed to point at GW2, just like we do at WoW, and say to others no, that, don't do that, never that.


#2110109 Where has everyone gone?

Posted Perm Shadow Form on 07 December 2012 - 12:22 AM

Yeah, logged back in GW1 too, the whole time I was thinking how much better it would be if they simply reskined it and added jump/roll,,,
Even SoS spirit spammer is more entertaining than Guardian GS DPS spam.

People say, it's a new game ... but ... it's really heart breaking seeing how they abandoned so much great features GW1 had... PvE and PvP... it's as if they wanted to make GW more WoW/ (Insert generic MMO name here) like.

Sad.


#2108678 Where has everyone gone?

Posted zeth006 on 05 December 2012 - 08:42 PM

View PostSoulless, on 24 November 2012 - 05:43 PM, said:

but the truth is, GW2 will never last as long as GW1. Even before EOTN came out, GW1 was very much still active. It hasn't been a year and GW2 is kind of dead already. That says a lot.

My God. I have so many awesome memories of GW1. A lot of great things that I can't seem to get from GW2.


#2100711 Anet on why there is vertical progression

Posted RabidusIncendia on 29 November 2012 - 06:10 AM

View PostAureliusRex, on 28 November 2012 - 10:34 PM, said:

Totally agree with this.  No matter what your opinion on VP, GW2 is just a mess of a game right now.  If you want to be where there are any people at all you are running fotm, and even then, you're looking for a group your level if you can find one.  The economy is bad, the open world is empty, the launch day dungeons are empty, spvp is a complete flop,  there are reams of bugs that haven't been fixed, and the community is at each other's throats.

This ship is starting to take on water and Anet had better start taking some serious action soon.  If the community perceives the ship is sinking there will be mass exodus.

I've taken a two week break from both the game and the forums (minus some tp posts) and this is going to be my last post, but the break has really given perspective for me.

As much as I hate gear treadmills and ascended (and I still think it's stupid btw), ascended really isn't the reason to strop playing GW2

It's a lot of reasons.  Reasons that together make this game really suboptimal, but it's hard to see after the initial excitement of waiting 5 years for the sequel to the game I loved guild wars.  It's kinda silly if you've seen my posts, but I really think of myself as somewhat of an arenanet fanboy given how much misplaced excitement I had for this sequel.  Many of the reasons can be seen by just comparing the original to this one, others are just general * ups for this game.

1) PvP aside, both games were inevitably about grind.  Realistically speaking, you tended to do things that were profitable in the original GW even if some things were less fun, although there were so many ways to do this you could usually find something that was both fun and profitable.

The difference is the grind was open and fun.  In guild wars 2, if you want to reasonably grind for something, you honestly only have like 3 or 4 grind options and they're all boring as hell.  You can grind orr, now you can grind fotm, you could do ori runs, or maybe you could solo farm in Frostgorge.  And you'll be doing this all with a build which you can techincally modify but will ultimtely just be the same damned obvious build as anyone else, even if you choose different traits.

In guild wars 1 even in the beginning you could chest run, run people through areas, farm mursatt, farm any of a million other areas since lack of downscaling meant you could farm just about anywhere for profit, run FoW or UW, holiday farm (since you the required ingredients for holiday collectores reamined the same you could farm for next holiday), and even do PvP for PvE rewards via Hall of Heroes.  Now realistically speaking, FoW and UW were no different than any other dungeon of GW2, but all the others were massive fun.  Everyone had their own special running build that they worked on and specfically used, and running required quite a lot of skill: You needed to know every inch of your run.  Not everyone could do droks (I actually couldn't reliably! although I found marhan's more profitable anyways :3 ) and many of the others were difficult.  But you went through it and mastered it and it was quite enjoyable when you could help people out and make money doing it.  Especially fun is when you come up with your own runs, like when I figured out how to run captured son in like 2 minutes flat.

And thats just describing running people!  There were also these grouped chest runs in FoW which were absolutely hilarious.  People who had a warrior in prophecies know what I'm talking about.  You basically had 8 warriors join the dungeon all together and just keep running as a group hoping you didn't die, until eventually the group wiped and you opened a bunch of chests along the way.  It was incredibly fun, and the rewards were very fun too since you never knw what you were going to get.  You could sell the stuff unidentified and make a solid profit, or you could take a gamble and hope for something really great.

And then of course there was standard farming, but even then you used your own unique build.  People were always tweaking and messing around with builds and while there were some accepted specific builds for some areas (namely 55s/ bond monks), you could really run whatever you wanted that worked for you, but at the same time it was always incredibly different from everyone else.   Ever run sorrows furnace with 8 fire eles and no tank or monks?  That's a friggin blast.

For anyone who read all that and is a GW1, you know these were all fun.  And compared to what in GW2?  Spam 1 in an event.  Spam AoEs in frostgorge or grind your one friggin set of fractals with the same build everyone else uses of your profession.  Oh and there's ori runs, but not nearly as fun to do solo, and not nearly as difficult or amusing.  What a joke.  And now you guys are going to be stuck in one place, fotm really.

Furthermore, while there was techincally a gear grind, the top stuff only put you at 1-2% more powerful, and since guild wars was much more skill oriented, aside from running you didn't even notice it in the slightest (and even then, 1-2% is 1-2%!).  But this was great, because the few hardcore grinders who needed that top stuff for whatever reason payed through the nose for it, so even the most modest of farms could fund you with the money to pay for several alts' armors and runs to the highest level areas.

tl;dr  Grind was still the point of PvE, but it was much more open and fun.

2) Pvp again, in comparison is an absolute joke in Guild wars 2.  The excuse given for dumbing down builds so everyone runs the same damned crap and everyone expects the same damned crap is that at the very least it would be easily balanced.  The problem?  3 months into the game now and there is still less viable build variety and formats than in guild wars 1.  This is an atrocity.  I think they realized a bit too late now that roles such as interrupters and prot monks were what kept what balance guild wars had going, and removing them actually made guild wars 2 balance even worse, only now it's dumbed down and stupid to boot.  Without profession specific roles, people just choose whichever class runs that role best, and so we see a neverending set of nerfs and Arenanet scrambles to try and bring some semblance of class balance.  In the end, we're left with about 20 or so viable builds across all professions, which is truly terrible.

3) WvW, the final format, is a format that fails on a level greater than Hero battles, and considering the latter was actually an attempt to make solo players try and handle 4-5 capping zones by themselves rather than fight, that's saying something.  With the substantial amount of AoE in the game, both defensive and offensive, realistically you need large parties to counter anything, and because of the high population size per map, realistically you had to zerg up to take a tower, as organized groups had scouts that could stop small groups.  And there's severe population imbalance.  And there's no decent reward (negative for new players actually).  And there's hacks on a level unseen in guild wars.  And you cant even see your enemies names so there's no social value at all.  They probably know what they need to do: lower the population queue max all around and force people to spread around, fix outmanned so it's fun to play at odd hours, and increase the towers per map to prevent zerging.  But they just don't give a shit.

So to all of those still pissed off at ascended and the gear grind, I challenge you: just take two weeks off from the game and the forums.  If you can't take a two week break from it, when you would probably otherwise be playing for months to years, that should be a bit of a warning sign that you're only playing to keep up with the grind in the first place.  I actually had a hard time even quitting BEFORE ascended for even a few days because I know I would fall behind on playing the tp from not doing my daily ori runs and stuff and it would put me behind, but I realized this is not a good reason to be playing a game.

And if you do come back after two weeks, and play with all the more fervor, then good for you.  You actually do like the game in spite of it's flaws and there's nothing wrong with that, enjoy yourself.  But my instinct says most who would take this challenge will never play the game again, not once.


#2102274 After playing GW2, I decided I'd prefer a sub fee over any cash shop

Posted Zhahz on 30 November 2012 - 10:47 AM

Excellent post and I've been feeling the same way.

F2P to me is overrated and a lame way to conduct games.  Obviously companies can or think they can make more money doing it than with subs, or it wouldn't be such a trend right now.  While some people think "hehe, I get to play for free" - no, you really don't.  In most F2P you get an extended demo and you get nickel and dimed and if you REALLY wanna play, you end up paying, with the goal of the hosting company being that you end up paying MORE than a sub per month.

These games cost millions of dollars to play.  Nobody is giving them away for free.  Think whatever you want and maybe you're special and don't mind playing stripped down crappy versions of games to avoid paying ever.  But obviously enough people want more out of their gaming than the bare minimum and somebody ends up paying.

For people who love games and don't mind paying for their entertainment (ie, not trying to get everything for free, pirate games, steal music and videos off the net, etc, exaggeration - maybe - but I swear the attitudes of the people are similar) this new design paradigm is garbage, because what you get is games where every element of design is tainted by trying to steer you to the cash shop, microtransactions, cash walls, etc.  Game designers have to be constantly keeping in mind how they're going to get money out of you - instead of just being concerned with creating cool stuff for their games.  Entire game systems, like we see and the OP describes, are completely designed around controlling and limiting players to encourage cash shop use.

Maybe some people don't mind the tainted designs, limits, proddings, etc, but having played these games since EQLive and having paid subs for years, there is just a whole different vibe and feel to GW2 and moreso with other F2Ps that is just unwholesome to me.  I would rather play and truly have a wide open world that isn't so harshly governed by cash shop hall monitors and overlords.

I don't see how we, as players, can expect to get the best gaming experiences when devs have to be so mindful and focused on trying to squeeze cash out of everything they're doing.  Compared to a sub based game where they know they're getting money and the focus is on cranking out cool stuff to keep people subbing - stuff that can actually revolve around maximum fun.

ANet said their whole design philosphy is centered around fun but I'm not so sure and I agree with the OP, I see ANet tightly controlling and manipulating the game's economy, I see ANet shut down things players figure out to do to get ahead, ANet is designing based on pushing people to the cash shop (BL keys for the october event caused a surge, november event had new chests that caused a surge, now we have makeover kits (a good thing) but again causing a surge), along with other new game additions that keep people poor and/or grinding.  And they take fun stuff like dyes away after months of them being fun.

I'm one of those people who usually makes a ton of coin in these games thru various means - market manipulation, crafting, whatever - there's always lots of easy ways to get easy money. But not in GW2.  There's way less potential due to how the market is setup and controlled.  So little stuff has value.  A lot of big value stuff is entirely luck (get a precursor drop or thru MF).  Crafting has been ok - tiny profits til this last patch wiped it out by driving the price of ectos and T6 rares thru the roof.  Most people get sure gold in GW2 by grinding and that's what circulates - the latest good way to grind to get gold (til ANet shuts it down then something else becomes the new latest good way).

Good or bad?  Do you really need to be able to make easy money in MMORPGs?  For me it sucks since player econ is like a minigame to me and that part of GW2 just does not exist.  I fired up SWTOR (as a subscriber, their F2P is not tolerable for a prior subscriber) and even being ridiculously rusty and not knowing current market conditions I had over 60 items listed and was piling up credits immediately.  It was fun to be able to actually LIST something that had value and demand in the player economy and sell it for an actual profit that wasn't buggered by insane fees on top of everything.  In GW2 when conditions are good I might list a couple of exotics in a day, and I go days at a time without anything listing at all since most drops aren't worth selling via TP.

I think it sucks for most people because there just is less fun involved in player economy when there is so little to sell, when most crap you loot is straight to vendor, and when the market is so comletely tight and even due to being game-wide that you can pretty much never score an amazing deal or make an amazing sale.  You're sure to get undercut immediately and pretty much must undercut to hope to sell, and it takes lottery like luck to score an amazing deal before some TP shark grabs it up (you'd probably have better luck getting a precursor as a random drop).

I doubt many players like the way the WP costs scale, or repair costs, or often feeling like you need to grind like mad if you want any gold or just to pay regular expenses.  Ido gathering runs to get T6 mats, which is pretty boring, but say, when Plinx was the thing to do for gold before ANet ruined it, I would always see a pile of people doing those events, and I can't imagine they were really having all that much fun either.  Mindless gathering runs or mindless event grinding.  Yay.  Big fun.

GW2 is better than most for F2P due to the box sales and less painful prodding towards the store (you aren't really restricted to point of needing to spend and only slightly inconvenienced to encourage spending initially), but there is no doubt that the game is designed around pushing people towards the store.

I think it's much worse in other F2P's and this is why I'm really getting sick of F2P.  I have never minded paying a sub for a game worthy of a sub.  The problem is that not many games are worth 15/mo.  So instead of F2P, either lower your monthly sub to match what you're offering or do something to deliver 15/mo worth of paying.  Regardless, I'd rather pay a sub for untainted and pure fun gameplay without the taint and presense of a cash shop.

I also think F2P is bad for player quality in these games.  People who are paying nothing have zero care about playing nice or behaving at all.  The MMORPG genre's player quality is already dreadful due to the emphasis on solo gameply and inclusion of slapped on PvP (in largely PvE games), but going F2P lowers player quality even more.  Again, this isn't as bad in GW2 as what I've seen in other games, since with GW2 you have to buy the box and paying tends to make people take things a little more seriously (and to not want to get kicked out of the game after paying for it).

I hope F2P is a fad that goes away.  I don't mind paying for good gaming entertainment and it wouldn't bother me at all if people who aren't willing to pay for their entertainment just didn't get to enjoy that type of entertainment.


#2101555 After playing GW2, I decided I'd prefer a sub fee over any cash shop

Posted DuskWolf on 29 November 2012 - 08:06 PM

I don't think this proves what you think it proves at all, OP.

What this proves is that predatorial, exploitative, insidious business models can exist in both pay-to-own and subscription models. What we have to watch out for in the future isn't the financial model, but whether any of the people involved have acted like sharks. I know I won't trust an NCsoft product ever again. Blade & Soul, WildStar, and any future titles are all off my list solely because they're NCsoft. With NCsoft being obviously owned by Nexon at this point, it's clear that future games will only be more predatory, not less.

And I'm not the kind of sheep who'll roll over and take bad punishment up the butt. I actually respect myself enough to not stand for that. So NCsoft isn't getting any more of my money. So long, ArenaNet. It was nice knowing you when you were you. Back when you were the ArenaNet that put together the likes of Prophecies, when you actually believed in your passions, rather than the shameless construct of exploitation you've become today.


#2101554 After playing GW2, I decided I'd prefer a sub fee over any cash shop

Posted Eon Lilu on 29 November 2012 - 08:06 PM

I hate to do it as iv been against subscriptions forever...but I agree with the OP.

Its so obvious that huge game design decisions have been change to cater for the free to play cash shop money grabbing. These things would never have been implemented or changed if the cash shop was not in the game. Its another reason why almost everything in the game and the entire game has just turned into one giant gold grind and hardly anything else.

It feels like all you do is get gold....grind grind grind. I just past 800 hours in game and everything is feeling like an after thought and grind compared to the cash shop. You can see parts of the game that have been changed because of this. Mini pets is another example, they could of used them for more collection of in game content, scavenger hunts like the black moa chick in gw1 but instead they just chucked them all in the gem store or rng chests in the gem store, gambling for mini pets.

If it wasn't for the cash shop there would of been no gambling rng in the cash shop and holiday items would of been attainable in game with fun gameplay, not pot luck gambling for skins in the gem store.

I am totally against cash shops, free to play games now, I will never spend a penny on them, ever. They change the way games are made way to much and make the games a whole alot worse. Cheap and shallow for cash shop grabs.

Im actually starting to think PC MMO's are dead and gone and we will never see the awesome old school type mmo's we used to love. My last hope is star citizen but they have even said there using similar model to GW2 so im starting to think there is no hope for PC MMO's.

Everyone seems to have the console / casual gamer attitude which is I want everything now, and if I can't have it im going to get my wallet out and buy my way to my goal. I want a game I can complete in 8 hours and then spend 50 pounds on another game I can complete in 8 hours.

This is the future of games. I guess the success and how popular mmo's have become is the reason why there going down hill, there catering to the majority casual players because thats where the money is. Unfortunately it means we just get shallow, cheap, easy to play dum downed games to play from now on.

I mean really the only challenging content in GW2 is fractals and they are not even that hard...the game is super easy you can sometimes play without even trying. The only challenge in this game is getting gold...so you go to the gem store.

I miss the old games where you buy it....its yours to play forever with a multiplayer built in, you run your own servers and thats it. no fee no cash shop, no bullshit. The games where so much effort was put into it you could play for years and there would never need to be a 2...3...4...5..version of the game. Thats never going to happen anymore, games are just too profitable now.


#2101474 After playing GW2, I decided I'd prefer a sub fee over any cash shop

Posted Alleji on 29 November 2012 - 07:16 PM

To preface this, I'm not trying to say "QQ I'm quitting". GW2 is still fun.

Now, on to the conspiracy theory. If you don't feel like reading a wall of text, there's a tl;dr at the bottom.

GW2 is centered around its cash shop, which is not unreasonable, because Anet wants to make money and the cash shop is going to be a significant (if not primary?) source of that. The other one being box sales. Compared to a traditional sell-the-box-and-done games, Anet is committing to keeping up the servers for an indefinite period of time and putting out monthly content updates for free (as opposed to paid DLCs in most other games). So naturally, they'd be interested in players using the cash shop.

Prior to GW2's release I wouldn't bat an eyelash at that. Yeah, sure, if they want to go with a cash shop instead of sub, that's cool. It's cosmetic-only stuff, right? No problem there.

But then I realized just how deeply the presence of the cash shop influences the game design. I'm going to use WoW as a counterpoint here, but people familiar with multiple sub MMOs will find them largely interchangeable.

The basic idea is: Anet wants everyone to stay poor. Because if you don't have enough gold, you can always go to the cash shop and get more. They want you to get more. How did they change the game design to facilitate this?

- Low-scaling rewards. A lvl 10 completing an event will earn about 0.5 silver. A lvl 80 gets 1.5 silver. Compare to a lvl 10 quest in WoW rewarding 3.5 silver and lvl 60 in vanilla about 50 silver (it varied and I can't remember exactly - been a long time). A maxed character in GW2 earns 3x more for doing basic activities than a low lvl character, whereas a maxed character in WoW made 15x more.

- High taxes everywhere. To continue the above example, a waypoint to a nearby place at lvl 10 costs 10 copper. A waypoint at lvl 80 costs 1.5 silver. In other words, a 15x increase, when rewards increase only 1.5x. WoW doesn't have waypoints, but flight paths don't scale with level at all, just with distance (and ones in expansion areas are more expensive, but we're talking no expansions here). Trading post tax is also quite high at 15%, compared to WoW's 5% tax off the profits + variable listing fee, which almost never came close to 10%.

-Lack of a trading function. This very heavily compounds the trading post tax by taking away an option of bypassing it. People would be trading bulk amounts of materials and expensive items such as precursor between themselves, which is less gold taken out of the economy, which is bad for the cash shop.

- Dye drops. There's a thread right now where people are talking about the recently reduced dye drops. Unidentified dyes are fun to open and I can see why people are upset. I'm also upset, but I'll say that it makes sense for dyes to be more rare that they even are currently. Why? Cash shop. Why would anyone buy dyes from cash shop if they're 3 silver on the TP? Anet saw that and patched it up. A sound decision all around, but unfortunately, the simple existence of dyes in the cash shop takes away a tiny bit of fun from the game here: finding and identifying dyes.

- RNG everywhere. I'm not going to go into a detailed explanation here, because I think everyone knows this one. Suffice to say that RNG instead of guaranteed whatever is good for anet because gambling in any form takes the gold out of the economy.

- Inflating prices on the already-expensive crafting components. I first saw this as a simply stupid design decision, but it's actually quite intelligent, if you only look at the bigger picture. Why use piles of t6 crafting materials and ectos to craft the new ascended gear? Well, because those materials are already in demand for creating legendaries! Kill two birds with one stone: create a new gold sink and make the old one bigger by inflating some of the crucial ingredients. Meanwhile, we get a rich orichalcum vein which significantly devalues a semi-rare material that's not really a limiting factor anywhere.

- This is a bit of an anecdotal evidence, but I think ecto salvages have been stealth-nerfed in November's update. Whereas I was not getting ectos from about 20% of the salvages before, now I'm failing to salvage them from over 30% of rares. (I've actually recorded some stats, but the sample size only around 100 rares and it's in no way conclusive because there may be other factors involved, such as the type of item).
EDIT: Apparently lots of people on official forums thought so too, but it's been statistically proved wrong since. I'm still getting terrible results from salvaging rares.

- Worldwide economy instead of server economies. This serves to largely eliminate a "middle class" : a casual trader or a crafter, who would spend some of his time at the trading post for a profit that's well above average, but not sky-high to the point where he can pay his rent by selling gold. In a worldwide economy, only the most dedicated market players can compete and there's no room for crafting because there's 5000 instead of 50 crafters online at any given time willing to undercut each other. As a result, 0.1% of players (Occupy Lion's Arch!) may become absurdly rich and never need to use the gem store in their life, but the 4.9% that would've been moderately rich are instead locked out of the trading game and kept at a controlled level of income that anyone can get from farming Orr or dungeons or whatever. The remaining 95% are unaffected.

- Lastly, the very existence of the cash-to-gold conversion is bugging me. 300g for a Dusk is a huge amount of gold to me. I have about 100g at the moment and I play quite a bit. Probably about 2 hours a weekday on average and much more on a weekend. So it would take me hundreds of hours to get a legendary, which is working as intended. But, I could put down roughly what I make it 2 days at work and buy that Dusk. (Slightly more if you make minimum wage, but for anyone with a job, with the only exception being that 0.1% professional in-game trader, RL-income is higher than game-income.)

I'm not about to do that, because it feels like cheating and I don't think I'd get much satisfaction out of buying my legendary with cash, but the idea that you can do that certainly diminishes the game as a whole for me. Moreover, there are people doing it and they're increasing the cost for everyone else by taking the gold out of the economy.



TL;DR: The cash shop in GW, although not directly selling power, influences the game in a lot of ways. The existence of the cash shop and gold-to-gem exchange makes it Anet's prerogative to keep players poor so they are tempted to buy stuff or gold with cash.

- Rewards don't scale well between low and max lvl characters
- There are high taxes built into the game in form of AH fees, WP fees, and lack of trading function.
- Drop rates get normalized to be in line with cash shop items, not with "fun". Dye nerf is an example of this. Requiring a ton of t6 mats and ectos to craft the new stuff and deter people from their legendaries is another.
- Global market as opposed to a per-server economy eliminates a "middle class", downgrading them to the baseline income/
- Ability to buy the most desired items in the game with cash via gold-to-gem, which just shouldn't be there.

I wish Anet just charged 15$/month for this game and never had this cash shop.


#2080186 Ascended Items

Posted BlackBoxx on 15 November 2012 - 03:37 AM

View PostHector, on 15 November 2012 - 02:08 AM, said:

I think that is the reason so many are so damn mad. They crossed the one line no one wanted them to cross. And they didn't just tiptoe over it either. The blog post crossed the line skipping and whistling. Jesus, it is just the disappointment. I haven't logged in since that blog and, unlike some people, when I say something I mean it, and when I give my word I do everything in my power to keep it. I won't be logging in again.

This a thousand times over.  No one is objecting to new gear, a new dungeon, new zones or anything.  The complaints are about the increase in stats that come with all of it.  We were told this game would not have that.  

Now, I'm not going to say ANet lied to me or anything, but the sheer fact that they abandoned the core selling point of the game that appealed to me means I have nothing left to hold onto.  I also have not logged in, despite teusday-thursday being my free block of time to play games.  On the contrary, I uninstalled the game.  If I ever want to play again, it will have to be so badly that I'm willing to go through another 8+ hour installation.  

Drastic?  Yeah.  That's just how frustrated I am with ANet changing their policies.  First it was the dye system, then it was death penalties, then it was respec costs and trainers.  Those, I could live with, but I will not participate in another endless gear grind.  I know, I know.  They said they wouldn't add any more tiers.  I don't believe that one bit.  Why should I?  They already added one due to players asking for more powerful items to go with more difficult content.  Why would these people be content with only one addition?  ANet is going to have to make this choice again, and I have no doubt they will make the same decision.