Guild Wars 2: reviewed DK tl;dr style
so let’s start by talking about launch.
this has been perhaps one of the rockiest launches i’ve seen since aoc. tradepost has either been down or game breakingly bugged, with many players losing gold or items forever in it with no hope of compensation. the mail was up and down on a daily basis, including due to exploits ranging from scams to duping. europe had major conenctivity issues and continues to have major routing issues resulting in widespread lag and ability delay. some heavy unexpected downtime as well(to contrast this with other launches- it’s a bigger deal than long, but scheduled downtime other games tend to have) which is exacerbated by big talk about lack of downtime in gw1 by fans. wide range of broken events and quests. as well as the huge oversights on the prices of many items in karma and gold leading to some huge exploits.
that being said the game is a load of fun to play. perhaps the singular most casual mmo i’ve every played. levle scome quickly and easily and you wander aimleslly from heart to heart doing events and mining nodes along the way. in fact experience is perhaps the currency in game that is the easiest to come by within a huge margin.
gold on the other hand is far more valuable than exp, far harder to come by, and far easier to deplete than anything else. it’s also the main means by which ncsoft/anet hope to profit from gw2, that is by selling gems that are then converted into gold in a very non player driven system(regardless of any claims comparing gem system to plex, that is very much not the case- the main points being that plex is freely tradeable among players, and doesn’t have an exhorbant mark up when converting your irl money to in game currency like gems do). the gw2 economy has as ingularpurpose from top to bottom, and that’s to drive profits with gems sales to buy gold. we’ll get to this more below.
the comba tis a lot of fun, but you will quickly learn that it has some of the heaviest handicapping in an mmo combat system since warhammer. for me personally the biggest of these is the attack arc followed by the strafing speed. attack arc is less than 180 degree forward, which means no proper strafe kiting, which means that you spend all of your time dpsing on the move circle strafing. which admittedly was pretty fun- in 1994 quake and duke3d. strafe speed being roughly 3/4-2/3 of forward speed only compound this issue. as well as various bugs with some skills/weapons missing even when in range, or show up as obstructed randomly in a string of hits when conditions remain the same, or skilsl not registering any results from obvious hits, or simply goign stright to colldown, nevermind the lack of animation/visual for pivoting(which makes puzzles more “interesting”), strang elos rules for gtaoes, and the once in a while slow moving auto attack skills which aren’t homing missles, leading some people to believe the game would be better suited by fps/action rpg aiming system. it’s all a bit odd, and all of the combat quirks and handicaps is why either this game will never be an esport, or will serve as another reminder of why esports is such a joke these days.
wvw is one of the best classic mmo pvp experiences in an mmo since lineage 2 chronicle 3. alot to love here for the old school mmo pvper. very strategic, and regardless of what anyone says, there’s room for every size group here to make a difference. although “night capping” is super effective at winning matches within the first few hours, imho this is just a part of this style of mmo pvp that can’t really be nerfed without it becoming yet another carebear fest fps mode tacked on to an mmo a la wow bg’s that’ we’ve seen so much of in the last 6 years. and while plenty of people whining about wvw being unfair want that kind of thing, they just need to stfu and learn that wvw was never meant to be fair. something i sat as a person on a server that regularly gets matched up with servers that cap 90% of the map with in the first few hours of anew match and stays there.
i’[ll say that the gold sinks vs gold rewards of wvw are a bit out of wack. an upgraded tower is going to cost several gold, and for no return on gold to the payees. as well that tower is going to need several siege golems to break down the doors, again with minimal(1.5s per player) ROI. nevermind upgraded keeps with defenders. nevermind repair bills*(*it’s easy enough to focus on avoiding dying to minimize repair bills). but having a war machine is a crucial part of this kind of pvp. i can see some tight matches being decided simply on who’s warmachine lasts longer and who runs out of gold to throw at wvw. which is a good thing.
endgame. w/e claims about hte whole game being endgame, or w/e bullshit anet adn fans have been selling for years now goes out the window when you hit 70 and hit orr. while you’ve seen undead for a long time now(risen) and are no doubt getting sick of them already, the game changes quite dramatically here. now it’s all about farming events hours on end for drops and karma and gold while battling anti farming code on drops and karma and dealing with dense fields of mobs that have incredibley long lasting cc that they spam relentlessly. rule of thumb here is don’t travel alone unless you are focused on condi removal. at this point you are goign to be focused on grind, the one thing anet promises you should never have to do. ofc tehgold income vs the costs of gear and money sinks is aimed at one thing- making anet money
and let’s talk about that finally. much of player’s gold costs are not player driven here, but rather they are set by anet directly. the main cost of leveling a craft for example is vendor mats, followed by fine mats that have relatively poor drops rates adn require you to grind if you want to avoid spendign gold on them, fighting against anti farming code to do so. the best gear in teh game stats wise is all buyable with gold, making gw2 very much pay 2 win in teh same way RMTing in any other non f2p mmo is pay 2 win. bags are perhaps the silliest money sink, with everything above 10 slots bags being proihibitvely and exponentially mroe expensive to some full retard degree inspired by aion.
and much of this game’s systems and what not are going to be familair to aiona nd l2 vets. whatever any claims to contrary from the ignorant- this is very much an ncsoft game, with code engines and plugins used in other ncsoft games as very cnetral and ecompassing parts of gw2.
all caveats aside though- gw2 is a blast to play, and will keep you coming back if you truly enjoy mmo’s. i coudl go on and on about thigns big and small that add up to make this perhaps the only true AAA/proper mmo to be released since wow. the great looking armour, the great loking environments, the overall enjoyability of the available activities. yes some gamebreaking bugs, a pay 2 win cash shop driven economy, but definitely worth the price of admission.
i’m giving it my highest score ever at
**before anyone brings it up- no, diablo 3 is not an mmo. stfu abotu fucking god damn motherfucking diablo 3 launch and learn what an mmo is.
***if you don’t think gw2 is pay 2 win, you don’t understand what pay 2 win means or that it existed long before cash shops and f2p games like allods online or world of tanks.