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Paragus Rants

Rants, reviews, and interviews from an MMO veteran and guild leader.

Author: Paragus1

Guild Wars 2 Thoughts

Posted by Paragus1 Wednesday February 22 2012 at 7:37AM
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Guild Wars 2 Thoughts

So here we are finally, and Guild Wars 2 seems to be coming over the horizon in the foreseeable future finally.  Everyone seems to be speculating on how Guild Wars 2 might shake out and what it means to them, so I guess I'll lay down my thoughts on the table.

I have to say after being in a virtual MMO retirement for the last year or so,  I finally see an MMO that looks like it might be worth playing.   For me this is a big deal since I've made no bones about my distaste for a lot of the stuff that's passed through here promising to be some sort of game changer for the genre.  At this point I can safely say the TOR train is flying over  the cliff as we speak considering most people finally figured out that scripted story can't be produced fast enough to keep people entertained for more than a month or so.   Tera looks a bit interesting to me, but despite their new take on combat, I can't just help but shake that feeling that the rest of the game is going to end up being generic.  Guild Wars 2 looks like it "might" finally be something that might take hold around here.  It's not a sandbox or an open world game, but at the same time it doesn't seem to be stepping in the footprints of the other "next-big-thing" MMOs lately that lead to that cliff overlooking the bargin bin over there.

I find it kind of ironic that for a game that looks like it might be raising the bar for a non-sandbox game, the bar to be considered a major success is actually quite low.  I've been digesting a lot of the press beta event articles and videos, and the one common thread mentioned by almost everyone who was in there is a reference to Dark Age of Camelot.  To see this mentioned so consistently across all media, and recalling the GW2 devs mentioning DAOC as influence, I'm thinking we might be on to something.  What does Guild Wars 2 need to do to be a success?  It's actually quite simple.   GW2  simply needs to recreate or recapture the DAOC PvP / RvR experience that a lot of us veterans cherish.

From the the information we have right now, it looks like they are on the right track.   Ironically, Mythic who invented the DAOC experience, has completely fumbled and botched their attempts to do just this.   It's sad and hilarious that they forgot the important parts of what made DAOC so successful, while Arenanet seems to better understand it.  Finally someone realized that 3-sided PvP should be in an MMO that's based on PvP.   Yes, based on PvP, not tacked on there as some sort of afterthought.  Thats 2 steps in the right direction.  Centralized PvP area with massive keeps and a relic type object.  No subscription fee to boot, now you have my attention.

As much as I want to drink this kool-aid I have to remember everything we've seen happen.  My optimism is a cautious optimism.  We can't discount the fact that somehow someone will find a way to screw this thing up, because the other companies always do this either right on the drawing board or how they manage it once it goes live.  There are some aspects I can see people taking issue with.  I was disappointed by the fact that the WvWvW area seems to have a cloned layout to the outter areas.   I think it would have made for a much more interesting dynamic to have them different, but at the same time I can understand the reasoning behind it.  One layout being favored or unfavored can lead to some epic whining and rage as people graps for reason why they lost or how it wasn't fair.  Such cries always exist in PvP games from those who have been beaten.  

Also while the game may look a lot like DAOC, let's not forget one of the things that made DAOC what it was was the fact that it had so many classes, all of which were specific to the teams.   Obviously that's not the case nor would it make any sense in GW2, but I suppose it will make for better or easier balancing.  Finally let's hope for the love of all that is holy, that one thing they do not take from DAOC is the Mythic pattened excessive amount of crowd control.  Warhammer Online's 140+ cc abilities or whatever it turned out to be was horrid, and DAOC area of effect insta-cast mez / sleep was horrific for watching your group mates get assist trained down one by one would you stood there unable to react.  Ultimately while the games differ a lot, there is an opportunity for GW2 to actually improve from the DAOC experience.

The other thing nagging on my mind is what happens to the genre if this game turns out to really be the "next big thing"?  If Guild Wars 2 offers everything the other MMOs do, or do it better if their innovations end up working out (remains to be seen yet), why would anyone pay a monthly fee to another non-sandbox MMO?  I think of it in terms of the MOBA genre where League of Legends offered a similar game experience for free that others made you pay for, the others ended up having  to go free to compete.  As long as GW2 doesn't mishandle the microtransaction aspect of the game by letting people buy some form of power, they could not only shake the genre up dramatically, but also nail the coffin lid shut on a lot of the clones out there still charging a fee.

I guess we'll see how this all shakes out, but right now I have cautious optimism.   I'm looking forward to getting into the beta, and I know the staff here as well as myself will be livestreaming the ever-loving balls off this thing once we get our hands on it and are allowed to do so.   I hope you'll join us when that happens.


Paragus Rants

Co-Leader of Inquisition

Coldren writes:

Excellent post, and I agree completely. I do hope they can recreate the RvR of DAoC, but as you said, I'm only cautiously optimistic.


As you also stated, the diversity of classes per faction was another element that made DAoC unique, but is cast aside in the name of balance. The thing is, I can't think of any ability a class had in DAoC that didn't have a comparable or direct copy in at least one other faction - One ability might be on a Hibernian class, and there might be an Albion class that had a very similiar ability, but Midgard might not.. It might not be even on the same archtype of class, but the abilities were farily even if I recall correctly. But I do see why some things are going to be similiar.


We'll see what we'll see.

Wed Feb 22 2012 1:16PM Report
Jacobin writes:

The DAOC class system had to go because there were cleary a lot of underpowered classes. It was hidden behind the zerg only pvp and the instant AOE mezzes you pointed out, but there was still constant complaining about balance and this was 10 years ago. I would say that one of the advantages WoW had over doac when it first came out was better faction balance.

Even if there are some skew ups a long the way, based on the beta footage we can pretty safely say that this is the best pvp mmo ever released, except for perhaps Eve. All this for no sub will make swtor look like a total joke.

I am actually laughing to myself when I compare illum to the GW2 pvp map.

Wed Feb 22 2012 11:54PM Report
Master10K writes:

Judging from the press reaction and the articles and videos ( that came out of the press beta, it is hard not to feel optimistic and the prospect of WvW. There are definitely a few issues with it in it's current state like: the HP of Walls and Gates, the excessive particle effects & the how the game still needs to be optimized across the board. However ArenaNet have been rather open about their development process and have told the community that they are aware of these issues and are looking to fix them.


So yeah... it's pretty hard not to be optimistic about it.

Wed Feb 29 2012 7:59AM Report
Fadedbomb writes:

Just saying Paragus, you know as well as I do that Mythic was canabilized & split up amongst EA-Bioware for other projects.

This means that "Mythic", and even Bioware, are only "Names" for EA's new game developing teams.

WAR, and subsequently SWTOR, were NOT Mythic's fault. Mythic, technically, no longer exists. They're just a once proud husk of a company eaten out from the inside by the parasite known as "Electronic Arts".


Low blow on the comment about Mythic considering their "husky" state.


Just sayin....

Tue Apr 03 2012 10:58AM Report
Classicstar writes:

If GW2 holds i realy don't see why games with subs still a legit form of pratice.

But if the itemshop give people B2W then its a whole other ballpark. Plus will dynamic events work perfectly or don't show a boring zerg of events follow the mass and zerg through the game untill lvlcap?


Fri Apr 06 2012 4:50PM Report writes:
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