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Guild Wars 2

Guild Wars 2 

General Discussion  » Anet's curious game design decisions that caused the 20-70 wasteland

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170 posts found
  Gaia_Hunter

Elite Member

Joined: 5/04/12
Posts: 2590

1/08/13 3:57:31 PM#121
Originally posted by fat_taddler
Originally posted by Scarfe
Originally posted by Volkon
Originally posted by moosecatlol

I only agree with the invisible walls, each zone is nothing more than a square/rectangle-esque platform with nothing but water in the shape of a square/rectangle below the surface.

I find more invisible walls in GW2 than I do in Borderlands 2. Invisible walls are the ultimate immersion killer T_T.

What invisible walls? Where? 

 

I haven't seen them yet.

He means artificial walls, and there are a hell of a lot of those, horribly designed and implemented. 

I've always been amazed by the collective pass given to ANet by both critics and gamers when it came to the rectangular zones.   Seems like something you'd see in an old 8-bit game, not Game of the Year for 2012.

I've always been amazed by the collective passen given to pretty much every MMORPG studio by both critics and gamers when it comes to the lack of a physics engine in the. Seems like something you'd seen in an old 8-bit game, not a game played after the Year 2000-

 

Yeah, that is right mate, having worlds with no physics and barely any AI scripts allow for vast seamless worlds that are dead.

 

Currently playing: GW2
Cooperative (semi cooperative)board games you should check: Pandemic, Sentinels of the Multiverse, Eldritch Horror, Descent 2.0,Level 7 Omega Protocol, Last Night on Earth

  botrytis

Elite Member

Joined: 1/04/05
Posts: 2516

1/08/13 3:59:20 PM#122
Originally posted by jpnz

In a reddit AMA, ANet's devs accepted the 20-70 wasteland issue as valid and said 'we'll have to figure something out'.

An MMO that is top / bottom level heavy isn't anything new but compared to other MMOs, apparently this issue was more extreme.

It also doesn't help that most DE will constantly fail if there isn't enough players involved which means most players can't progress and see the next one. Since DE was suppose to be GW2's most hyped feature (as an aside, remember the 'zones will change!' lie? ANet, what happened? T_T), having it constantly in a failed state highlights this issue even more.

So what are the major design decisions that made this issue into such a big one?

1. Level scaling. Having a constant challenge by scaling is a game design decision that is mostly in racing games now and for good reason. If you are at level cap in WoW or other MMOs, going to any area that isn't the 'high end' doesn't really concern you.  You will ROFL-STOMP everything in that zone so there is little barrier on actually doing it.

Not in GW2. Whether you like this design or not, it is manifesting in GW2 with the 'wasteland' problem as there will be less players willing to go to a zone if there are little rewards for a lot of risk.

 

2. Too many mobs / areas have too many invisible walls

The GW2 map shows a game world that screams 'arificial'. There are no 'curves' or anything. Just straight up rectangles filled with invisible walls.

The mob intensity makes it really difficult to travel from point A to point B and so people are less willing to do it.

 

3. Self-recursive problem

The problem itself of 'less people in the world' causes issue 2 to become even worse which in turn causes more people to avoid going out into the world.

 

I said 'curious' cause I don't think they were thoughtout that well and now ANet is trying to figure something out.

They mentioned that they don't like the henchmen idea but I don't see a solution without redesigning their game which is probably the last resort. I don't mind having henchmen cause they worked great in GW1 so not sure why the resistance now.

You haven't played the game at all. Even though the maps are rectagular the interior of the maps is widely varied. I have YET to run into an invisible wall (I did in GW1). Lions Arch and Divinitys Reach are not rectangular either. You really don't know what you are talking about.

 

I am happy they don't have henchmen anymore.

"In 50 years, when I talk to my grandchildren about these days, I'll make sure to mention what an accomplished MMO player I was. They are going to be so proud ..."
by Naqaj - 7/17/2013 MMORPG.com forum

  Gaia_Hunter

Elite Member

Joined: 5/04/12
Posts: 2590

1/08/13 3:59:51 PM#123
Originally posted by kyssari
Originally posted by Volkon
Originally posted by kyssari

My biggest issue with this so called wasteland is GW2's skill system actually. That being said the wasteland exists more 30-80 rather than 20. The thing is once you hit 30 and unlock your Elite skill slot you can technically have every skill in the game unlocked that your character can ever possibly use. You can easily get all the skillpoints from all the pvp zones and 1-35 zones (and even a number of higher ones if have to) to unlock everything at 30.

That being said I often found myself burning out around mid30s-40 with my alts because by that time I had all the skills unlocked I was interested in and thus I really had nothing to look foward to until 80. That leaves 40-50 lvls of nothing but gear upgrades really. With most other mmo's leveling up to gain access to those cool new abilities played a much larger part in making me want to hit those high levels with numerous toons so I could play with those new abilities. This doesn't really exist in as much with GW2, especially when you ause the Heart of the Mists area.

Not saying the system is good or bad just the biggest reason for my fast burnout on the game in general.

 

Wow, someone is forgetting to allocate their trait points it seems. You don't seem to realize how much you can customize your character with traits. One I like personally is one that I use to change dodging into an offensive weapon for my mesmer. There are more layers than just the skills you see on top.

True you got traits to allocate all the way up to lvl 80 but traits don't even compare to learning all new skills. For the most part traits just enhance skills/stats/etc that you already have and are nowhere near as exciting as learning a completely new more powerful ability altogether.

You got traits,

You got the gear.

You got the runes and sigils.

You got the consumable food.

Any of these can be put together to change the play style of the character widely.

Currently playing: GW2
Cooperative (semi cooperative)board games you should check: Pandemic, Sentinels of the Multiverse, Eldritch Horror, Descent 2.0,Level 7 Omega Protocol, Last Night on Earth

  jtcgs

Advanced Member

Joined: 9/28/04
Posts: 1843

1/08/13 4:27:26 PM#124
Originally posted by fat_taddler

You and some others are missing the point.  Prior to GW2's launch, the popular talking point was that the whole game is end-game and how the level scaling mechanics were going to change the way we play MMO's.

Clearly, that was something that sounded good in theory but did not actually work out as well as many had hoped.

 Actually I am not the one missing the point.

I have helped guildies far FAR more in this game that previous because I hated the idea of power leveling players. In this game, I can go and PLAY with them, no matter the difference in our levels and it wouldnt be power leveling them, it would be playing WITH them on near level ground. More over, I cant go ANYWHERE and just blow through low level mobs for materials and dump it on the market or power level my crafting. I still have to EARN it by either getting it myself, and it still be a challenge or to BUY it with the money ive earned staying in the same boring upper level zones.

“I hope we shall crush...in its birth the aristocracy of our moneyed corporations, which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength and bid defiance to the laws of our country." ~Thomes Jefferson

  User Deleted
1/08/13 6:32:42 PM#125
Originally posted by jtcgs
Originally posted by fat_taddler

You and some others are missing the point.  Prior to GW2's launch, the popular talking point was that the whole game is end-game and how the level scaling mechanics were going to change the way we play MMO's.

Clearly, that was something that sounded good in theory but did not actually work out as well as many had hoped.

 Actually I am not the one missing the point.

I have helped guildies far FAR more in this game that previous because I hated the idea of power leveling players. In this game, I can go and PLAY with them, no matter the difference in our levels and it wouldnt be power leveling them, it would be playing WITH them on near level ground. More over, I cant go ANYWHERE and just blow through low level mobs for materials and dump it on the market or power level my crafting. I still have to EARN it by either getting it myself, and it still be a challenge or to BUY it with the money ive earned staying in the same boring upper level zones.

You really are missing the point unfortunately.  Your post is all about what YOU do while this topic is focused on core game mechanics that aren't working the way many had hoped.

When you have a game that doesn't allow level / gear appropriate players to experience a significant portion of the PVE content in a particular zone due to lack of player activity, there's clearly a problem.  

Unfortunately, GW2 has quickly turned into the lobby game that so many people were looking to get away from.  Even more unfortunate is the fact that it's a lobby game without the convenience of an integrated LFG tool.

 

 

  Lovely_Laly

Novice Member

Joined: 11/02/10
Posts: 736

game is also real

1/08/13 7:52:09 PM#126


Originally posted by fat_taddler

Originally posted by Volkon You don't actually play GW2, do you?   Level scaling keeps zones competitive. In archaic games like WoW, people simply don't go back to the lower level zones because they out-levelled them rendering them completely useless. In GW2 the zone still can give you a challenge and you're rewarded based on your level, not the level of the zone.  Invisible walls? I don't recall running into any at all. At least, there's nothing invisible about a massive mountain range, for example. The shape of the zones is beautifully hidden by the artistry of them. It feels like a breathing world, not a static box. The only place I've seen the "state of fail" issue with DEs is Orr, the end area. That problem lasts about as long as it takes to annouce that an event is up to change that. People arrive, the push is on and before you know it you're checking out exotics from the vendor.
I disagree with this.  The DE's reward Karma at a rate that's appropriate for that particular zone.  On top of that, the Karma vendors in those zones only sell items that are within the recommended level range for that zone.  

There's very little incentive to go to lower level zones unless you're looking for map completion



very true, so only popular events like Frozen Maw, keep some high lvl guys at low zone, most of them I've done once, for map, and will sure never come again.
I prefer to get more XP, karma and money from Orr events.

try before buy, even if it's a game to avoid bad surprises.
Worst surprises for me: Aion, GW2

  Lovely_Laly

Novice Member

Joined: 11/02/10
Posts: 736

game is also real

1/08/13 7:55:02 PM#127

by the way, at WoW I farmed some medium low areas and some dungeons for drops and such.
was part of my fun and money making (not very low area though, more like BC part).

at GW2 are like nothing to discover, not even 1 shop selling anything good to resell at TP. =XD

all you can discover is item shop push over.

try before buy, even if it's a game to avoid bad surprises.
Worst surprises for me: Aion, GW2

  jpnz

Elite Member

Joined: 6/29/06
Posts: 3547

 
OP  1/09/13 12:25:50 AM#128

WoW and GW2 has similar high level game design actually.

WoW lets players go out there and get the titles / achivements / pets / different looking loot (transmog) etc

GW2 lets players go out there and get the titles / achivements / pets / different looking loot (transmute) etc

The difference is that WoW doesn't have level scaling while GW2 does.

Whether you personally like the level scaling or not is subjective.

What is factual though is that level scaling doesn't appeal to everyone, thus less players will be out in the GW2 world doing the above things.

Thus, you have the 20-70 wasteland issue.

 

I think ANet is backed into a corner, either they accept the 'Henchmen' idea (which they said they didn't like) or they roll-back on their core game design of level scaling.

Second option will have such a large impact I really don't see ANet doing it unless it is done in an expansion and even then, I have my doubts.

Gdemami -
Informing people about your thoughts and impressions is not a review, it's a blog.

  AIMonster

Apprentice Member

Joined: 12/31/08
Posts: 2016

1/09/13 1:07:59 AM#129

I don't really want to go through this massive thread, but I noticed that a lot of people don't seem to understand that karma rewards do scale up as you level even when downleveled, just like gold and EXP.  Just like gold and EXP though, doing content downleveled will still give less karma than doing it at level.  So doing a level 1 dynamic event at level 80 will reward you with much more karma (at least 10X if I recall) than it would reward a level 1, but not as much as doing a level 80 DE at 80 (it's somewhere a little over 4X as little if I remember correctly).

Considering how much faster you blow through DEs due to gear, traits, and unlocked utility skills you'll find that doing DEs downleveled quickly is actually pretty rewarding, but not as much as Orr because there are far more frequent dynamic events and longer chains that you don't have to wait in between for.  The wasteland problem is more with the way Orr is designed in my opinion than the rewards being too low when downleveled.

Keep in mind that people will farm events that are up most frequent, contain long chains of multiple events, and can be completed quickly in large groups.  This is why bots farm centaur DEs out in the Human 2nd Starter Zone and Orr.  The problem is in most areas events don't spawn as frequently, may take a while to do (such as long escort quests or champion/legendary MOBs with loads of health), or just don't contain enough of a chain of events to be consistent enough farming.

Besides since dungeon rewards have been increased and fractals were added, 70-80 is a wasteland too.  Aside from karma for legendaries there isn't much incentive to go out and farm Orr when you can run AC or CoF EXP for 10 hours and come out with a full set of exotic gear and massive amounts of gold.  Honestly with the new daily, monthly, and dungeons rewarding karma if you farm at a normal pace there isn't much incentive to do any DEs out in the world at all considering by the time you farm enough gold and materials to make your legendary you should have more than enough karma from these sources.

Raptr link because it's the cool new trend:

  fivoroth

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 11/10/06
Posts: 2679

1/09/13 1:18:50 AM#130
All MMOs are top heavy. I don't see your point. It's not because of Anet's game design that the 20-70 zones are barren. I love their scaling system because I am a completionish and love to see everything in an MMO. In WoW I completed all the quests int the game (loremaster) for both factions. A lot of those were completed when I was max level (60/70/80) and that made the quests ultra easy. I would have killed for a feature like this in WOW.

Mission in life: Vanquish all MMORPG.com trolls - especially TESO, WOW and GW2 trolls.

  Kaneth

Elite Member

Joined: 8/19/07
Posts: 1568

1/09/13 1:26:18 AM#131

Well, to be honest, the DEs in the less populated zones don't seem to pop all that often, at least when I last played a month ago. Additionally, many don't seem to scale very well, at least in some lower level zones, so sometimes even though you get the DE to pop, you can't effectively solo it (when there's truly no one else around).

The hearts do help to some degree, but it's pretty common for me to fill a heart without seeing one of the repeating events happen. So I get my heart filled, get some karma and move on to the next heart and hopefully the event and other players are there.

Herein lies the problem with the psuedo themepark design. There doesn't seem to be enough going on, but there's also no quest hubs for you to expedite your leveling process. Some areas are a bit more congested with mobs which hampers exploration when solo (to a degree). This is also an issue with quest based themeparks, but you're directed a bit better.

What the game needs is a better random loot system (like the asheron's call series), and more of a reason to want to go out and grind mobs endlessly. Like instead of trophies only dropping randomly, add like a butchering skill where you can "skin" your kills for additional chances for them to drop their trophies.

Additionally, the karma vendors need a serious update for all zones. Create reasons for level 80's to want to go into any zone in the game. Unique armor and weapon skins, chances at unique loot in each zone, etc.

  PaRoXiTiC

Hard Core Member

Joined: 3/11/08
Posts: 486

1/09/13 9:38:10 AM#132

I don't know about you guys, but once I out-leveled a zone I have never been back. The level scaling makes no difference whatsoever. They really need to take it out of the game. I would rather power level guildmates who choose to do so by steamrolling lower level zones than going back and replaying the content just for fun.

  gaeanprayer

Novice Member

Joined: 8/06/08
Posts: 2360

1/09/13 9:50:29 AM#133
Originally posted by fat_taddler
Originally posted by Nibs
Originally posted by fat_taddler
Originally posted by Volkon

 

 

Actual loot drops and XP are suitable to your actual level. Karma, I suspect, is hard coded at a set amount. You can still spend taht karma at any karma vendor though, thus still getting level appropriate gear for it.

Sure, but why would someone want to go to a lower level zone only to get a fraction of the Karma that they could get from a higher level zone.  On top of that, they're down-leveled so the challenge and time investment is still there yet the reward is much less.  

 

Incorrect. Even with downleveling, you're doing more damage than you were when you were actually that level due to gear and traits. Downleveled to a level 30 zone I still kill far faster and more effectively than I do in a native 80 zone where it takes some effort, and I can actually get 70+ gear from it. If anyone, lower level zones should be more populated than the higher ones. 

The problem is not GW2's or Anet's, it's the fault of the players. It doesn't matter that rewards are fairly equalized, players 'perceive' lower level zones AS lower level and thus irrelevant, so they avoid it. This is a habit of the players that they're going to have to break themselves, if anything Anet's only fault is assuming that players would be better than that.

"Forums aren't for intelligent discussion; they're for blow-hards with unwavering opinions."

  Volkon

Novice Member

Joined: 9/14/10
Posts: 3813

Facts do not require fiction for balance.

1/09/13 9:54:45 AM#134
Originally posted by PaRoXiTiC

I don't know about you guys, but once I out-leveled a zone I have never been back. The level scaling makes no difference whatsoever. They really need to take it out of the game. I would rather power level guildmates who choose to do so by steamrolling lower level zones than going back and replaying the content just for fun.

Oh, I go back all the time when my kids hop in there to play. I'll bring my mesmer down to help them out with events/bosses or the like. The beauty is that I actually have to contribute constructively as opposed to one-shotting everything in my path. I still wind up with level 80 loot of varying degrees which usually winds up at the vendor, so it's a decent little bit of pocket change to help pay for some of those armor repairs from other things.

Oderint, dum metuant.

  daltanious

Elite Member

Joined: 4/19/08
Posts: 1753

1/09/13 10:18:33 AM#135
Originally posted by Volkon

You don't actually play GW2, do you?

 

Level scaling keeps zones competitive. In archaic games like WoW, people simply don't go back to the lower level zones because they out-levelled them rendering them completely useless. In GW2 the zone still can give you a challenge and you're rewarded based on your level, not the level of the zone. 

Invisible walls? I don't recall running into any at all. At least, there's nothing invisible about a massive mountain range, for example. The shape of the zones is beautifully hidden by the artistry of them. It feels like a breathing world, not a static box.

The only place I've seen the "state of fail" issue with DEs is Orr, the end area. That problem lasts about as long as it takes to annouce that an event is up to change that. People arrive, the push is on and before you know it you're checking out exotics from the vendor.

Was about to ask. :-))

Level scaling is incredible good feature. If not for other it leaves much more to do at any level. I love questing. I dislike a lot in wow that I'm to fast to high level for great quests. Does not make any sense doing quests level i.e. 10 with alt level. 20 or 90 for that matter. Not in gw2 and love it. Ok, minus is one can not just walk over low areas but I'm not bothered.

About invisible walls however I have find few areas that were not supposed it looks for any1 to go there ... but is far from being big problem, minor annoyance.

About DE maybe they should as zone scaling also scale mobs so even very small group can finish but i guess that is harder to do as many can join later. Happened many times I wanted desperately that part of game .... was back after 5 mins and already a lot of players around.

But ... hey ... there will never be perfect game. :-)

So far my list is wow/swtor and now gw2.

  PaRoXiTiC

Hard Core Member

Joined: 3/11/08
Posts: 486

1/09/13 2:57:33 PM#136
Originally posted by Volkon
Originally posted by PaRoXiTiC

I don't know about you guys, but once I out-leveled a zone I have never been back. The level scaling makes no difference whatsoever. They really need to take it out of the game. I would rather power level guildmates who choose to do so by steamrolling lower level zones than going back and replaying the content just for fun.

Oh, I go back all the time when my kids hop in there to play. I'll bring my mesmer down to help them out with events/bosses or the like. The beauty is that I actually have to contribute constructively as opposed to one-shotting everything in my path. I still wind up with level 80 loot of varying degrees which usually winds up at the vendor, so it's a decent little bit of pocket change to help pay for some of those armor repairs from other things.

Thats cool. The one problem I have with the game though is that people don't really every ask for lvl 80 players to come down and help them out. We have a lot of sub 50 guys in our guild, but I never see any of them asking for us 80's to come help them anywhere. Thats one thing I miss with this MMO.

  avalon1000

Apprentice Member

Joined: 3/04/08
Posts: 726

1/09/13 3:12:19 PM#137
A few days ago (I don't play GW2 that much anymore) I was on a level 36 character and started a DE that evolved into a champ fight at the end. By the time we were fighting the champ about 6 players had shown up so the mechanics worked perfectly. Higher level players coming down to lower levels still have an advantage I have noticed...not much, but it is there.
  rojoArcueid

Elite Member

Joined: 8/13/09
Posts: 5447

"It is double pleasure to deceive the deceiver". - Niccolo Machiavelli

1/09/13 3:20:15 PM#138

Too many mobs? Rift has too many mobs packed in one area and you cant roam freely without fighting which is annoying

I think GW2 has no problems with the amount of mobs. But thats just me.

My endgame begins with character creation and ends with a new mmorpg

  botrytis

Elite Member

Joined: 1/04/05
Posts: 2516

1/09/13 3:23:47 PM#139
Originally posted by rojo6934

Too many mobs? Rift has too many mobs packed in one area and you cant roam freely without fighting which is annoying

I think GW2 has no problems with the amount of mobs. But thats just me.

It does in Orr - which is a real hassle.

"In 50 years, when I talk to my grandchildren about these days, I'll make sure to mention what an accomplished MMO player I was. They are going to be so proud ..."
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  Fion

Novice Member

Joined: 7/25/03
Posts: 2356

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1/09/13 3:30:47 PM#140
Originally posted by Volkon

You don't actually play GW2, do you?

 

Lol I'd have to say no. 'Invisible walls everywhere' should be the hint there. GW2 is the only MMOG where I've yet to encounter an invisible wall even once (zone boarders not counted of course).

That said, there is a serious problem with wasteland zones. Do note however that this doesn't mean they are 100% empty, I still have zero problem finding a group to do Meta-Events in almost every zone.

Anet has actively stated as well that this issue will be dealt with in the 'massive' Feb/March content patch.

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