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The Casual Life by Wintyre Fraust

An older, casual player's perspective on MMOG's in general and GW2 in particular.

Author: Meleagar

ANET Is Lying To Us

Posted by Meleagar Tuesday November 13 2012 at 2:51PM
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Linsey Murdock (and thus ANET) is flat-out lying to us.

After having time to reflect, I don't see any other viable, logical conclusion.

ANET reported that pre-launch and launch sales were successful beyond their expectations. This means they exceeded their launch revenue goals - probably by a considerable margin.  Since GW2 is B2P, the only significant revenue they could have expected between launch and the first B2P expansion would be from the cash shop and additional game sales.

Now, they sold so many games that they even suspended digital game sales, so it's hard for me to imagine they aren't happy with game sales.  If you're ANET and you know your main source of income for the next 6 months or so is the cash shop, it seems to me clear that a cash shop expansion based on customer suggestions should be your primary focus besides getting that first B2P expansion ready.

However, 3 months into the game and now we have a new armor tier set that goes hand-in-hand with new content gateway mechanics in the Lost Shores updated slated to go live this week.  This kind of thing isn't something you just throw together at the last minute because some players are complaining about lack of gear progression. Such complaints had to be something ANET knew were going to happen.  It would of course take time for the community to sort itself out, because many, many people were going to log in at launch expecting to find the usual MMOG and would probably be dissatisfied with the lack of the usual end-game grind mechanics.  This is something ANET certainly realized.  They even said that they expected the game population to slack off between expansions as the powergamers consumed the content; it was part of their design philosophy.

It's only logical, given their philosophy, that they should have had a massive cash shop expansion ready to go - new skins, emotes, animations, perhaps an expansion of the dye system, avatar cosmetics, ability to change names, custom dye weapons more bank space, etc., perhaps some new armor drops throughout the whole world, perhaps some new events scattered throughout the zones, a new zone.  But the cash shop expansion should have been on the top of the list because it was going to be the revenue generator.

But, what are we getting? 3 months in - before any cash shop expansion or any other content in keeping with the original design philosophy, we get content that certainly took some time to generate (perhaps months, considering how ANET likes multiple iterations through development) and is clearly in structure contradictory to their core design philosophy as stated.

Is ANET really just schlepping out thrown-together design-busting content generated in a panic by nothing more than a lack of cash shop sales, as some have suggested?  If that was the case, wouldn't it be more prudent to "schlep out" cash shop product that keeps in the design philosophy, even if they hadn't been planning on such a CS expansion all along (and they should have been)?

Linsey Murdock said that this change is due to customer feedback; I don't see how that is possible.  What customer feedback?  Complaints by a group they knew were going to complain all along?  There were no log-in polls or questionnaires.  Is Linsey saying that after a month or two they got feedback and THEN decided to schlep together a philosophy-betraying update including a new armor tier and armor-locked "end game" content? In a month? What happened to that famous ANET iterative process?

No, I don't think so. I don't think that complaints by a group they knew were going to complain anyway caused ANET to schlep together such a philosophy-betraying update 3 months in. That's ridiculous.  That's an obvious lie.

They planned this - this "item progression initiative" - long ago, which is why the Agony system and content is ready to go 3 months into the game and BEFORE any significant cash shop expansion. and WITHOUT any serious log-in polling.  This can't be a direction made necessary by a lack of income. This can't be a direction made necessary by any meaningful "customer feedback" since launch. The "item progression initiative" is just too big and broad to have been thrown together in a month.  Linsey Murdock and ANET are lying.

The "item progression initiative" had to have been developed long before any unexpected "customer feedback" forced them to come up with a philosophy-betraying update they could throw together in a month or so. I'm not buying that explanation for a second.

Stop lying to us, ANET.
 

vonryan123 writes: I got my refund that is all Tue Nov 13 2012 5:07PM Report
shadylurker writes: Why are you so mad? Sun Nov 18 2012 11:04AM Report
grindwars2 writes: I couldn't because, guess what, I was stupid enough to pre-purchase it on April. Laugh away. Sun Nov 18 2012 12:49PM Report
Papoye writes:

If there is no Item progression-HL content players go on other games and don't spend money in the GW2 cash shop.

Skin hunt is fun 5 minutes,I find a skin i dont want to change it every day.

Cash shop is not compatible with static content.

 

Tue Nov 20 2012 5:18AM Report
Meleagar writes:

Papoye,

Guild Wars 1 did fine for 7 years without vertical item progression.  "Skin Hunt" was fun for 7 years.  "Lack of vertical progression" is not the same as "static content".  You can add all kinds of content without adding a power-creep vertical progression gear grind - and that was the whole point.

They changed GW2's basic philosophy with a massive, expansion-style update 10 weeks after launch, which means they were planning and developing this content well before launch, which means they never gave their stated philosophy a chance to succeed, which means they lied to their player base.

Tue Nov 20 2012 5:46AM Report
Ashar1972 writes: This saddens me, while I didn't buy the game, so many of my friends and guild-mates did, many under the pretence the OP did. To me this strikes of false-advertising, I'm no lawyer, so that is just an uninformed opinion - but it looks, smeels and feels like what they advertised over a lengthy period, is not what they actually planned on delivering. If that is true the ramifications over an already weary MMO population will be significant. That is of serious concern. Tue Nov 20 2012 9:57PM Report
Ashar1972 writes: This saddens me, while I didn't buy the game, so many of my friends and guild-mates did, many under the same belief  the OP did. To me this strikes of false-advertising, I'm no lawyer, so that is just an uninformed opinion - but it looks, smeels and feels like what they advertised over a lengthy period, is not what they actually planned on delivering. If that is true the ramifications over an already weary MMO population will be significant. That is of serious concern. Tue Nov 20 2012 9:58PM Report
Ashar1972 writes: This saddens me, while I didn't buy the game, so many of my friends and guild-mates did, many under the same belief  the OP did. To me this strikes of false-advertising, I'm no lawyer, so that is just an uninformed opinion - but it looks, smeels and feels like what they advertised over a lengthy period, is not what they actually planned on delivering. If that is true the ramifications over an already weary MMO population will be significant. That is of serious concern. Tue Nov 20 2012 9:58PM Report
melvein writes:

I enjoy the game and find nothing wrong with it.  They don't make me play it.  You don't have to purchase anything in the cash shop to play it.  You don't need high end gear to level.  You don't even need to run any of the dungeons to level.  I don't understand why you are so worked up.  Yes this patch was planned.  They probably have all the patches planned out for the next year.  It's ovious if you just look at the world map.  Knowing that they alread have a plan makes me feel better about my $60.  I have already gotten my moneys worth but I know in the future I will get more.    Play the game if you enjoy it.  You say you area casual gammer but you act like a Fanboy that is disalusioned.  

 Compaired to the way other companies run their games Anet is still byfar the most honest.  Are they totaly honest ...no.  They are in it to make money.  That's why they made the game.  They want it to be fun because they know that's how they will keep the players.   I consider myself a casual gamer and I am a fan of GW2.  I am also an older player that has been playing MMO's for about 10 years.  Play the game because you enjoy it.  If your not having fun find something else.  It's just a game.  

Thu Nov 22 2012 12:41PM Report
Pin_Cushion writes:

Wow....

You seriously call this "Vertical Progression?"  Ascended armor is <slightly> better than exotics.  You can already complete every shred of content in the game (save higher fractals) in Masterwork gear!  Gated content?  Where?!  You are competitive in WvW in Rares!  Infusions are ONLY useful for doing higher tiered fractals, which are exactly the same as lower tiered fractals.  The difference in stats between exotics and ascended gear is there to compensate you for the fact that you can't alter those stats with runes.

Do I like Lost Shores, fractals, and ascended gear?  No!  I think it was a huge waste of time and money.  Do I think this is some nefarious plot to suck more money out of my pocket by dangling "better stats" under my nose?  Not at all.  If it is it's a terrible ploy.  Go play Aion for a couple of weeks.  That's gated content, gear treadmill, P2W Cash shop, and eternal grinding!  GW2 is nothing like that.  Nothing!

Fri Nov 23 2012 4:58PM Report
mysticaluna writes:

hehe and hopefully it won't ever be but everyone's main concern is that it is the "beginning of many updates and new ascended gear to come" .  What if they keep patching in very slowly and eventually it speeds up faster and faster? It's the worry that they are "dipping their toes in the water" before they keep upping stats more and more... 

Customers that say nothing to a gradual change will merely witness an eventual undesired outcome and be like "WoW!, I sure never saw that coming!".  I thought it was just a simple +1 stat and suddenly a few patches later the stats have gone crazy with procs and insanity!! Who knows, hopefully they will keep it slight... However, everyone is worried about what has been said by Anet themselves about the future... 

Mon Dec 10 2012 11:10PM Report

MMORPG.com writes:
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