User:Ezekial Riddle/GW2 concerns

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During the course of the year 2010, ArenaNet did something it hasn't done before: Release information at a near-consistent rate. Not only is the rate of release consistent, it's actually quite fast compared to how often information was released prior to 2010. Especially within the past month or so, where we started getting details about professions and other mechanics weekly.

From the looks of it, GW2 PvE has potential. Certainly, it has more potential than the Guild Wars' PvE. For starters, a dedicated auction house will be in GW2. There are a few things that might bog down the PvE, but this is all I am going to say about the PvE at the moment. Rather, it's these things that could bog down PvE that look to be the death of competitive PvP in GW2.

Caveat lector: ArenaNet has released little to no information in regards to competitive PvP, but more and more, it looks like they're appealing to the lowest rung of PvP, while rejecting the highest tiers. Hell, it sounds like they dropped the monk (shorthand for "dedicated healing class," for those so inclined to take offense to my saying they're dropping the monk) so that Random Arena fighters don't have to worry about whether their team has a monk or not. [1] I'm worried that GW2 e-sport will be as much of a sport as "professional coin-flip toss calling."

There is also one issue in regards to their world vs. world format that I see that ArenaNet has yet to address. Again, as of this writing, ArenaNet hasn't seriously discussed how their WvW will work, so I will be pleased if they address this issue.

In no particular order:

Death Mechanics[edit]

ArenaNet's new death mechanics is one of the few things that give the GW2 it's potential ("I once, while downed, threw a rock at a dragon and dun kilt it. Beat that!") It also has me greatly concerned for their competitive PvP. On top of being 'downed,' being 'rallied' or being 'defeated,' ArenaNet also removed death penalty. While dying or being 'downed' is a penalty on its own (e.g. 3 vs 4), they're also encouraging stupider play. Stupid as in unintelligent. Granted, the stated reason was because GW2 PvP was about "taking risks and heroic actions."[2] In my mind, though, this opens up the floodgate for suicidal Quake strategies, where death is more of an inconvenience than a penalty.

My main concern with the lack of death penalty is the leeway it gives to, stupid playing. Something in the vein of Leeroy Jenkins stupid, where you just charge in blindly and hope to kill everything you can. Death penalty discouraged this stupid play, especially in the recent power creep where one person's death means the rest of the team folds (not that playing with power creeped skills requires smart playing)

Heroic moments happened in an environment with death penalty. Heroic moments occurred also when $50,000 was on the line.[3] Are you seeing a pattern here? The more of a risk there is, the more epic these 'heroic moments' are. By removing or otherwise watering down these risks, you are effectively nullifying these heroic moments that were "one of the reasons" for removing some of the risk.

Their new "holy trinity,"[edit]

I have nothing against their new "holy trinity" of Damage/Control/Support. However, they seem to be unaware of how some elements from one section of their trinity blends with other sections of their trinity. For example, they talk about the types of AoE damage you can do under their Damage section.[4] However, they do not give the slightest hint that AoE damage is implicitly a form of Control, especially AoE DoT.

I get the impression that ArenaNet is unfamiliar with their own mechanics. This has me worried for the potential abuse of skills down the road.

Lack of body blocking[edit]

I can't find any 'official' sources on the removal of bodyblocking, so I would much appreciate if someone would be so kind as to provide links to either the ArenaNet blog, Gw2 site or interview which stated that body blocking was removed. What I am saying is based off a few GW2G posts.

In a persistent PvE environment, I can understand removing body blocking. We certainly don't need any "POOL IS CLOSED" incidents. In PvP, though, the removal of body blocking makes me scratch my head. I'm baffled, considering body blocking wasn't easy to do right. ArenaNet has said that they kept the spirit of body blocking with knockdowns, a new mechanic called knockback, and two new conditions called freeze and immobilize (on top of the condition 'cripple'). I don't like this as it puts lesser skilled groups more on par with the higher skilled groups (read: gw1 balance of late).

Removal of the monk/no dedicated healing[edit]

I'm pretty sure a lot of the competitive/e-sport crowd flipped when ArenaNet said "Guild Wars 2 does not have a dedicated healing class."[5]. Yes, protting is a very good mechanic to introduce into online gaming. You can't compare stopping damage versus healing it. However, from a game design perspective, you have to let some damage go through. You can't load everyone up on defense because matches become stale and boring when no one is doing any damage to each other. Thus, there must be a limit on the amount of prottting/defense they will put into GW2. However, the lack of dedicated healing makes spiking so much more effective, since, odds are, you won't be able to catch a spike done to you. I can see the competitive meta now: "...balanced, highly defensive builds with strong spike power." Or as Raine put it: "Guildwars 2: Rawrspike Edition." Without something like Infuse, it looks like the meta will be rawrspike.

Removal of weapon-swapping[edit]

Again, this is one of those sections where it's based of an unofficial source (this time, GW2W). I would like links to more 'official' sources, please.

This barely slipped my attention, but it appears that weapon swapping has been hindered, if not outright removed in some instances. The elementalist, for example, can only have one weapon set. Rangers and warriors will each get two.

I realize that weapons are tied to skills you get on your skill bar. But again, the lack of weapon swapping removes a lot of the distinction between unskilled and skilled players. Weapon swapping wasn't even that hard, provided that you were paying attention to what was going on.

World vs World: Lack of player coordination[edit]

This has me worried greatly. WvW looks to be a super-AB. Anybody who has AB'd regularly knows that, at best (unsynced), AB is four people trying to work with two other groups of four people to a varying degree of success. It is not, however, uncommon to be in a situation where it is twelve people each trying to do their own thing. Often times the results are nasty, with the twelve people forming up and tackling one shrine at a time.

I am worried that things like this could bother WvW, where instead of 12 people doing their own thing, it is 500 (or however many per team, though IIRC, 500 isn't an exaggeration) people doing their own thing. I do wander how ArenaNet will address the apparent lack of coordination in this setup.


  1. ^ Healing and Death "If you have played enough Guild Wars, or any other MMO with healers, you've sat around waiting for the right mix of professions before being able to continue. Or you loaded into Random Arena and both teams had two monks (or they had a monk and you didn't), and you already knew the outcome of that game 99% of the time. But we've all had those 4v4 Random Arena battles where neither team has had a healer. Instead of not being able to kill anyone or being forced to attack the monk first, you can actually think about who to target, when to use your defensive spells, where to position yourself on the battlefield, etc. "
  2. ^ Death and Healing in GW2 - An Exclusive Interview with ArenaNet's Jon Peters | Ten Ton Hammer "Guild Wars 2 is a game about killing, not a game about not dying. It is more about taking risks and heroic actions and that is one of the reasons that the death penalty system has been removed."
  3. ^ Team Quitter | GWFC: The Last Pride vs. Idiot Savants "Making such a huge (and pretty much unheard of) adjustment in the middle of a tournament match in front of screaming euros in a high pressure situation was the reason we won the matches...Finally, I doubt that any other guilds would have the balls to agree "Sure, let's forfeit all boosts and outside NPCs against one of the best teams in Guild Wars history with $50,000 on the line. Yeah, that sounds great." That is why we won."
  4. ^ Healing and Death "There are projectiles, AoE projectiles, AoE projectiles that apply damage over time, etc."
  5. ^ Healing and Death"We're making players more self sufficient, but are also providing appealing ways for them to effortlessly work together to create a more inspired moment-to-moment experience. That is why Guild Wars 2 does not have a dedicated healing class."