09 october 2012
I haven't really played Guild Wars 2 lately. Looking at my xfire profile, I noticed that I've spend only 2 hours in GW2 the last 7 days against 12 hours in TERA and 5 hours playing Dragon Age: Origins. This made me wonder what the possible reasons are that I'm not really playing Guild Wars 2 anymore, while I am very positive about the game as ArenaNet has put it on the market. Not to mention, what has TERA and DA:O that appeals more to me than GW2? Time to take a look...
Lets start with the most important thing... Questing in GW2 had been totally overhauled. The old questing systems have been removed and instead you have heart quests and dynamic events.
Heart quests are fun to do, but though promoted as no 'kill 10 rats' activity, in most cases it actually is. Only a couple of times you actually can do something else than kill those 10 rats. This compared with most (MMO)RPG's really makes no difference. The only thing that does make a difference is that with heart quests you mostly have a choice of what you'll do to make progress in it, where in regular (MMO)RPG's you're forced to do a single task to complete the quest.
Dynamic events are probably the thing I don't like. Though at first they are fun to do, they are actually party quests. So far no problem, but the problem is that in Guild Wars 2 you don't need to party and thus no one will party. Because of this, a dynamic event is yet an other solo quest you stumble upon
Guilds & parties
Yet an other thing and I've already mentioned it above as well as in a blog post 2 days ago. Because of the nature of the 'social game-play' in GW2, there's no real need to players to party anymore. The only reason players will party is to get into one of the few dungeons out there or as a bunch in Wv3, but there a party is not even really needed.
For the same reason, guilds are not a real issue either. I've been in a couple of guilds already, but most are very silent after a couple of days. I'm missing the regular chit-chat from other MMORPG's, as well as the help-requests from other guild members. The latter is pretty easy to exlain since there's no real reason to party in GW2 (here it comes up again). The first however is a bit odd though. You might expect that in any guild chit-chat will be there, but in GW2 it's not really the case. I personally think that because of the solo-oriented nature of GW2, a lot of players actually start to behave that way, even when they're in a guild...
Bots & gold sellers
An issue in every MMORPG, yet in GW2 it's a real big issue, and it feels like ArenaNet is doing nothing about it. I haven't seen many bots myself in GW2 (only a couple), but I hear reports of players who see a lot of them everywhere. This is a bad thing for every MMORPG. Though ArenaNet tells their players that they are working on the bot problem, so far, I haven't seen (heard) of real proof that the number of bots are less than before.
And with bots come the gold sellers... Those are real annoying in GW2. They started by yelling in the major towns to promote their 'cheap gold'. Next they started to spam in Wv3, and now they are even sending mail to players. Last time I played for a few hours, I had 5 of these messages in my mailbox And as a side effect of the players buying gold, the price of gems has gone sky high already. Where I could buy almost 400 gems for 1 gold in the past, by now the price has gone up to 220 gems for 1 gold.
I've heard this reason before on the MMORPG.com forums and I said that they were nuts. Well, after a 150 hours of playing GW2 I'm feeling that same way as well. Though GW2 has no grind, the lack of character progression (you can already have most skills you want/need at level 20) really makes GW2 feel like a grind at times. Doing yet again a heart quest of a dynamic event. As always you're doing it solo. Though these game-play elements are well thought through, the lack of social interaction when doing them gives them quicker the feeling of being repetitive than when you have interaction with other players. I can know this after playing Lineage II for more than 5.000 hours (3800+ recorded on xfire). Lineage II is said to be a real grind game with lots of repetitive content (mob grind mostly). But because of the social interaction (parties, accosionally random PvP) it didn't feel like that.
Last but not least... The title of the game would suggest that you do need guilds, and that these guilds have wars. Guilds having wars would implement open world PvP. Well, nothing of that is there. GW2 is a real PvE 'MMO'RPG with only 2 ways to PvP. The first one is Wv3, which you can enter after a massive queue, the other one are grouped arena matches (sPvP).
In short, if I want to play a single-player RPG, I think I'm better off playing DA:O, and when I want to play with social interaction, TERA is the better one over GW2. Basically, GW2 has no real meaning to me because it's completely an 'in between' of single-player RPG and MMORPG. With Guild Wars (1) I knew what I was up against, and playing is as a single-player RPG it was a lot of fun. With GW2 though, playing it as a single-player RPG makes me feel bored rather quickly, while there is no reason to play it as a real MMORPG, unless you go into a dungeon or Wv3.
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