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Teala's Wickedly Cool Blog For The Masses

Just my thoughts on MMO's, roleplaying, game companies, and the people that play these games.

Author: Teala

Why Guild Wars 2 is good for World of Warcraft

Posted by Teala Thursday August 30 2012 at 8:03PM
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Ever wonder why the MMO gaming genre has been in a rut for such a long period of time?  Of course you have.  We all have.   Ever since World of Warcraft came onto the stage it has been the model by which many game designers have tried to copy.    Instead of bringing about changes and innovation to the genre, game designers saw Blizzards success with WoW and immediately they jumped on the WoW model for game design band wagon.  

Even the once great  SOE(publishers of EverQuest and the former Star Wars Galaxies) were amazed at World of Warcraft's growth, and couldn't take it lying down.  They took a game fresh on the market, in its first couple of years of its life, Star Wars Galaxies, and rewrote it to play more like World of Warcraft - the NGE(new game experience) was SOE's and Lucas Arts attempt to make their game Star Wars Galaxies play more like WoW.  Who could blame them, World of Warcraft saw phenomenal growth in a short period of time, and brought in millions of new MMO players.   This was an astounding feat, and for any gamer that had been playing MMO's since their inception(with the creation of such games as Ultima Online and EverQuest) they were surprised as well.  

World of Warcraft set the gold standard for MMO's.    Within a couple of years we saw dozen of games that would be deemed WoW clones get launched.   All were decent games, but the one thing they failed to do was take what World of Warcraft had done and instead of making as good a game, or better - they merely tried to counterfeit.   It didn't work.    Many games ended up going free to play just to stay alive, some barely clung to life support due to the publishing company unwillingness to proclaim defeat, while others did close their doors.

This is good!   In fact it is great.  It means the good games succeed and the bad made games went the way of the Dodo.    It also meant that game makers realized that in order to compete for the market, that Blizzard dominates, they'd have to take risk and try to give players other options.    Because of that we saw games like Pirates of the Burning Sea, Darkfall,  and the Secret World get published - games that tried to go off the beaten path from the WoW blueprint, that so many game makers had tried to follow.  Sure these games were not a huge hit, but at least these gave us other options as gamers, and it showed that some game companies were willing to take a chance to give us something different.

Recently Anet and NCsoft gave us what some people would love to call a WoW knock-off.   Guild Wars 2 is not a WoW clone, it is a themepark, but unlike games like SWTOR and RIft that fell more into the definition as a WoW clone, Guild Wars 2 has brought a new type of themepark to the table and is trying new things.   It is showing us that even though Guild Wars 2 is a still a themepark, it can and does have unique game play, and innovates how a themepark game can be built.   It is a great base for Anet to build from to make Guild Wars 2 one of the best MMO's on the market.

This is good for Blizzard and the gamers that play World of Warcraft.   It is good because Blizzard, in order to stay relevant, must adapt and innovate themselves - if they wish to stay competitive in todays MMO market.   If they don't, then games like Guild Wars 2, and other up coming titles, will strip gamers away from World of Warcraft and Blizzard itself may find itself scratching its head asking - "Where did we go wrong?"   

Blizzard has to realize that their game is starting to show its age.  The graphics need updated and the game itself could do with some substantial, sustainable, content upgrades.   Not just new battlegrounds or raids, but new content, and new ways to play through that content that is both dynamic and fluid.    Static worlds are going to go away.     Azeroth itself is very much a static world.     Anet has shown us that a game world doesn't have to be static.   That it can change and evolve through the actions of the gamers that play the game.   Something many games fail to do(games like EVE and Darkfall are exceptions to the rule).  

With competition comes innovation.    Guild Wars 2 has brought a good alternative to the table in regards to themepark MMO's and I for one think this is a good thing for all of us as gamers.    Let's hope other game designers take notes and realize that good games succeed and can make it in a tight market place - even if said market place was once controlled by an 800 pound gorilla.   


BTW if you are curious, my only real complaints about Guild Wars 2 is the lack of first person view, and no mounts.   If Anet ever decides to add them, I'll probably give Guild Wars 2 a go.   ^-^

Krosslite writes: Excellent and will thought out. Gave it a bump Fri Aug 31 2012 1:08AM Report
Roxtarr writes: Good read.  Plus, first person camera and mounts would be welcome additions to GW2. Fri Aug 31 2012 1:24AM Report
Inktomi writes:

Well written post tha reads like a college paper. You must be doing awesome in your writing classes. 

Anyway, just want to point out that Darkfall and EVE are static worlds in the sense that the environment does not change unless the players change it. Jita would still be Jita if everyone left, it is the crowd that surrounds the entrances that make it interesting. 0.0 changes when the brilliant game designers gave players the ability to create in that space (POS's, territorial claim unit etc.) 

If the world changes to adjust a moral decision, such as a destroyed town restored, it is still a static change since the town itself, is static. The real malleability comes from the evironment having a definate affect on the players ability to co-exist with said environment.

Good stuf as usual T, +1.

Fri Aug 31 2012 7:17PM Report
Inktomi writes: *definite Fri Aug 31 2012 7:18PM Report
jpnole writes:

Awesome blog & 100% accurate. But you haven't "given GW2 a go"? That was so good I would have thought you were levelling now.

My complaints are that I want to zoom the top down camera further out and the camera bouncing in and out in buildings makes me sick. Other than that I like it so far.

Sat Sep 01 2012 12:17PM Report
Rayshe writes:

Ill give props to Anet for being somone to try and push things forward. i feel the same as i do with Funcom. Like em or Hate em, they have been trying to push things forward. Hopefully more companies will take the hint and start evolving the genre again.


anyways good blog.

Sat Sep 01 2012 9:57PM Report
Adiaris writes: A good read. +1 Sun Sep 02 2012 8:21AM Report
NameWasTaken writes: While I do agree with you 100% about including mounts in the game, don't mention ANYTHING to do with mounts over on the forum. The rabid fanboi's over there hate any ideas to do with mounts, and will rip you a new one at the mere mention of them. Sun Sep 02 2012 9:23AM Report
JeroKane writes:

Well the thing is... with the amount of portals on each map, in essence you really do not need mounts like in other MMO's.

But ofcourse, if enough people ask for it, they will add it as it's potential cash shop profit material! As Blizzard and SOE have already proven. :-)

I enjoy Guild Wars 2 a lot, just like I am enjoying TSW! These are my 2 MMO's to play for a long time to come.

They are both great games that indeed brought something different to the table.

I especially like GW2 where you basically do not have quests anymore. You just log in... roam and explore the map and jump right into the action of DE's.

Altho it has it's flaws... as a lot of DE's will become undoable down the road when population starts to drop in lower level zones.

Mon Sep 03 2012 2:26AM Report
MurlockDance writes:

Any innovation in an old game has to be balanced by the fact that people get used to the game as it is and counter changes. Everytime Blizzard changes something, even if not very big, a slew of people whine about it and leave the game.

I am actually surprised by how much risk Blizzard took in changing the old world in Cataclysm and now the talent system for MoP. If you compare that to how companies have handled old games like DAoC, AO, UO, etc. WoW has changed a lot since release!

If Blizzard are going to innovate too much more, I think that they will break WoW for the players they have left. They can still give content updates to WoW, but put innovation in Titan.

Mon Sep 03 2012 7:50AM Report
rojoArcueid writes: very good read. Hit the nail on the head. +1 Wed Sep 05 2012 6:09AM Report
Avanah writes:

First person view....yes.



Wed Sep 05 2012 3:26PM Report
Scizyr writes:

"When people are part of a group, they often experience deindividuation, or a loss of self-awareness. When people deindividuate, they are less likely to follow normal restraints and inhibitions and more likely to lose their sense of individual identity. Groups can generate a sense of emotional excitement, which can lead to the provocation of behaviors that a person would not typically engage in if alone. Think about the last sporting event or concert you attended. It’s unlikely that you would have been yelling or singing the way you were if you were the only person doing it! The group seems to make some behaviors acceptable that would not be acceptable otherwise."

If anyone here still plays WoW, is excited for the next Blizzard game or thinks the company is anything but pure evil, I have but one word for you:


Seriously author, The only thing good for Blizzard and World of Warcraft is swift death.  Discussing anything else is an exercise in stupidity, or what I would call "herd mentality."

Sat Sep 08 2012 8:38PM Report
Kyleran writes:

Let's just hope designers don't start considering GW2 the new "gold standard".  I'd hate to have to play 8 years or so of GW2 knockoffs.


Mon Sep 10 2012 8:51PM Report
Onomic writes:

There are so many times in WvW i wish i had 1st person option, there are to many close walls that mess with your camera. It can  be quite painfull at times.

Mounts would a be a welcome edition, the world is hugh and without a mount your pretty much forced to have runspeed boost as an offhand option (i hate those offhands as the runspeed is the only thing they are good for stil i wont equip anything else since i need that speed). Teleports help but i stil feel mounts are needed.

Gw2 has done some good stuff, sure there are things that could be better but all in all im happy and i also hope developers relise they can make a hit if they make something different with good quality.

Wow was a great experience once upon a time, i only playd that game for 6months but i when i did i thought and stil think its a quility game just not for me anymore. Gw2 i have the same feeling about its a good game but i will move on sooner or later as i do with every game i have ever playd.

As kyleran wrote i hope we wont see years of gw2 gameplay in the future. When im done with gw2 i will want something different again. Just as when i left wow i wanted something different.

Thu Sep 20 2012 4:02AM Report
Fadedbomb writes: Albeit I do agree 100% that GW2 is a "better" themepark. I however hope that we do not start seeing GW2 clones. Copying, albeit a form of flattery, is never good for an MMO. Fri Sep 21 2012 12:56PM Report
OSF8759 writes: What Guild Wars 2 did for the themepark was remove the lines so you can get on the rides without waiting. Mon Sep 24 2012 5:17PM Report
Vonatar writes:

Why do people want mounts so desperately in GW2? I have never understood it. Sure in a game like LOTRO mounts are essential - sometimes you would riding 3-4 minutes to get somewhere. But in GW2 you never have to run very far. Plus the whole point is that events distract you and pull you in and there is a concern that people on mounts would just blaze past.


For me, playing GW2 is a bit like playing Skyrim as I always get dragged into something I didn't expect to be doing. In Skyrim I gave up on horses because it was just better to move a bit slower and take in the opportunities around me.


As for first person view, personally I don't care as I don't play MMOs to be in first person. However I would like a better FOV and more intelligent camera.

Thu Oct 25 2012 10:18AM Report
GroovyFlower writes:

Guild Wars 2 i agree is alot different then WoW and can not be seen as WoW clone GW2 stand on its own.

But its eventually failing last couple of months and its getting worse the developers killing there own game and make it closer to WoW and will soon be seen as WoW CLONE.

Treadmill introduce dungeon farming and more and more easy gameplay.

Result events witch was one of the main selling points FAILED MISRABLE its eather a ZERG or no one CARES about them loot is terible and most events boss are almost never chellenged world is empty they all farmy instance dungeon.

WvWvW also failing in many ways some improvement s i hope is guilds can't swap server easly anymore will solve one of biggest problems.

GW2 is fraction of what i thought it would be at BETA with still beautifull world and nice idea about events but with empty world it FAILS BIGTIME.

Back to my old love Asheron's call 2 witch is btw alot better then GW2.

Tue Feb 12 2013 6:19AM Report
GroovyFlower writes: On side note MOUNTS dont belong in GW2 no need for them plenty of ways to travel fast and most is nearby that you don't need a mount for it. Tue Feb 12 2013 6:25AM Report writes:
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