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The staff of gets together to bring you some behind the scenes insights on stories, the industry and the site itself.

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Community Spotlight: Guild Wars 2 and the Downed State in PvP

Posted by MikeB Sunday July 29 2012 at 5:24PM
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In this week's Community Spotlight, we focus on the thread, "Poll: Do you prefer PvPing with or without a downed mechanic?" by otinanai123. He says:

It promotes zerging, punishes hit and run tactics, makes 1v2 2v3 predictable (the side with the bigger numbers will almost always win). It punishes players who prefer to play only ranged (don't tell me how to play). It promotes turtling (setting up turrets, banners in a certain spot and just defending it). Kills don't feel like kills. Stomps don't feel like kills either since they don't require skill (just press F).

It creates frustration in many different scenarios:

1) killing someone and then not being able to stomp him (because you are either too low HP or a buddy is guarding him). How awesome does it feel in other games when you kill someone and are left with 5% hp? You'll never experience that in GW2.

2) killing someone in a 1v2 and seeing him self-rezz when his buddy stomps you

3) being killed and having your enemy not stomp you but not let you rezz either just to mess with you

4) killing someone and seeing a team member swoosh in and take the stomp

5) fights between 2 downed players where they throw rocks at each other for 30 seconds (so much fun)

Does the community agree? Read on to find out!

joocheese definitely favors the downed state mechanic:

Definitely with the downed mechanic. If I'm not mistaken, the downed mechanic is a first in an mmo; this mechanic is one of the new things that GW2 has brough to the mmo genre. I think it provides the downed player an opportunity to rally and continue fighting and it also provides the attacker with a unique "finishing move". Btw, more often than not, players will not rally, on average; I disagree with people who say the advantage is for the downed player. When a player is "downed", the advantage is still to the attacker, who still has to successfully "finish" the player.

P.S. Even after a downed player has been "finished" by an enemy attacker, other players can come and rez the defeated player; it just takes longer than if the player was just downed. In my opinion, this is one of the best wvw/spvp mechanic that GW2 has introduced.

Rabenwolf offers a fairly neutral take on the subject:

On one hand, the downed state really doesnt make a difference. With or without it, your character goes down "dead but not dead", no matter what you will come back and continue fighting. It could be there on the spot or spawned all over again.

So at its core, the mechanic shouldnt really make people feel good or bad about it, since its nothing really different...

Now the problem is, which may counter what I just said... comes from the irrationality behind one aspect of it.

That is, if you go down, you can quickly toggle through nearby enemies, find the one with the lowest health and try to get a quick revive to then focus on the guy or girl who took you down to begin with. I would rather see the downed state equating revival with attacking the person who specifically took you down (or people, if more than one contributed to your death) (pvp only).

On the flip side, adding the ability to try and heal yourself in a downed state seems fine.

Even through all that, you will die in pvp and you will come back and fight again. Nothing really changes. It is perhaps best felt in PVE where it can be more of a gameplay changer than anything else.

Just my 2 Cents.

ItsGopher just isn't a fan:

I'm personally not a big fan of the downed mechanic, it gives a group too much time to get back up and join the fight. I do like that you can rez anyone, and I think that should stay; but I don't like the idea of self rezzing. If you die, there should be a consequence such as having to run back, or wait for your team to rez you assuming that victory is near.

Me? I couldn't wait for the weekend to jump into this discussion, so I'll excerpt a bit of my take for you all below:

Personally, I generally dislike the downed state (so far) in PvP. I've played a good deal of PvP in GW2, but not enough to conclusively say it's truly a positive or negative addition to PvP either way just yet. However, so far, it's often been a nuisance more than anything else. You do get an additional sense of satisfaction when you get the stomp on someone, but I've had far more frustrating experiences with it instead. It also seems to often encourage poor play. One can attack from the battlements of a keep without regard for his or her safety as he is generally safe to go down up there. This allows for cases where unchecked aggression is rewarded.

Additionally, ranged characters have to exercise poor positioning in order to go in to even secure a kill (there should be a ranged 'Finish Him!' with a longer/interruptible channel time for those using ranged weapons, IMO).

Ultimately, it doesn't really feel good to me. Even so, I don't think the baby needs to go out with the bathwater. I feel additions (such as the ranged finisher mentioned above) or other tweaks could be made to improve the function, at the very least. I'll reserve full judgment until I get more time with it. Given the overall awesomeness of GW2 in both PvP and PvE, I'm willing to give ArenaNet the benefit of the doubt on this one for now. 

What do you think? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!

Slampig writes:

Doesn't really matter to me, because I am not drooling all over myself because of this game. I think I lean more towards it being used in PvE and not so much in PvP but I have not done enough PvP to really, well care...

Sun Jul 29 2012 8:59PM Report
gaeanprayer writes:

I'm honestly not a fan of the downed mechanical, period. 99.99999% of the time I go down, I end up dying anyway. Things hit too hard, too much aggro, and you don't hit hard enough in your downed state to kill anything. It's VERY rare at it's useful in general PvE, NEVER useful at all in dungeons. It might be useful in PvP, but I don't really do it so...I couldn't care less what happens in there. If I were a PvPer though, I'm pretty sure I'd want the person I killed to actually like, die. 

Most of my criticism about GW2 has already been handled and fixed away, which is great. But that downed mechanic...bleh. Could live without that one.

Sun Jul 29 2012 11:24PM Report
Shaike writes:

i found it very usefull in PVE actually - i almost always manage to rally if i happen to die in PVE and its a nice addition. I do thing you should have like a 5th option while you are "downed" to just die.... Maybe it will make things easier for some.

Or maybe even a checkbox you could check (per-char) that states that you do not want this to happen on that char (and then you could disable it on chars you do not want it to happen and leave it on others).

Mon Jul 30 2012 1:16AM Report
Epierce41 writes:

I don't think it changes the game too much.  It does make the system a little more forgiving which I generally dislike (I'm big into risk v reward in PvP).  But I don't think the overall change is very drastic.  Most of the time when players go into the downed state, if they get ressed they were likely to be ressed by a teammate anyways.  Downed or just dead. 

The only time you see a real difference is when someone rallies.  Which leads me to think that the real issue here may not be the downed state mechanic but the rally mechanic.  I would like to see your chance to rally decreased a bit.  If you kill an enemy in the downed state it should give you a small chance to rally, not an automatic rally.

Mon Jul 30 2012 11:28AM Report
nyxxis writes: "gaeanprayer writes:

I'm honestly not a fan of the downed mechanical, period. 99.99999% of the time I go down, I end up dying anyway. Things hit too hard, too much aggro, and you don't hit hard enough in your downed state to kill anything. It's VERY rare at it's useful in general PvE, NEVER useful at all in dungeons"

Really? Downed state has saved me more times than not. It is all about learning what your downed skills actually do. I look at the downed state as an auto "ohh s**t!!" button. Look at WoW and the pally bubble. I think as many people hated that except for the ones that had one and knew when to use it. It can very well be a "LIfe" saver it a good amount of situations.  "NEVER useful at all in dungeons" You are kidding right? There are thousands of videos that have shown how great downed state can be in a dungeon and how it can save from total wipes. I think you had a couple bad experiances so have written off the whole thing.

I think it is a great addition, and makes me love GW2 all the more for it.

Sat Aug 04 2012 10:53PM Report
Roybe writes:

People are forgetting a simple fact in PvP.  This is actually a tactical decision.  If you down someone, you can immediately finish them or walk away and let them stay down.  Walking away ties up the player for the time it takes for them to die...or get a rez from another player.  I have generally considered this an interesting idea, as if you played your cards propelry you could down one player and use them as bait for another kill on another player that is coming to their rescue.  Granted I have not played in sPvP or WvW, but it appears on its surface to be a solid play choice.


In PvE, it adds to the fun.


Sun Aug 05 2012 8:10PM Report writes:
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