How I spend my time till Heart of Thorns

Expansion_Wait_PvP

I hear lots of complaints lately about the lack of new content. While I do agree with the obvious, I’m of the opinion that the devs should focus on developing the expansion. Those that feel too attached with the game will always find some way to spend their time. Personally, I’m having fun in PvP.

Honestly, I’ll never understand the demand that goes against time constraints. Any kind of development requires a serious amount of dedication if the interested parties are to enjoy a bug-free and on par with the expectations experience. But, you know, bringing something like that up could easily be countered by the fact that we are almost three years past the initial launch of Guild Wars 2. The real question though is, does stating that over and over again help in any way? Definitely not. Mistakes were made, wrong decisions took place consuming lots of precious development time, but in one or the other way here we are, finally waiting for what appears to be a highly organized release of an expansion.

We’ve all been witnesses in the past of so-called finished content getting out of the door prematurely. The Ascended crafting system, the trait revamp and all that zerg-oriented PvE experience being a few examples of that. Content that’s bound to or has already been announced to expect some major overhaul. A process that takes lots and lots of time away from taking a step forward and even work on modes like PvP and WvW that have seen next to no improvement since launch. Who’s to blame? I don’t really care. Could the community be more involved in the development process? Yes, perhaps. What matters at the moment though is that if taking away resources to work on new live content leads to a mediocre expansion release then personally I’m all against supporting that idea.

I get that most of you would be reasonable and wouldn’t ask for much. Like a simple re-release of a previous festivity perhaps. Super Adventure Box anyone? Yeah, no one would ever deny how awesome that would be, but if they can’t have a small team dedicated to this certain purpose, then let’s be clear with ourselves, it’s really not worth it. I mean it’s not like a simple switch they need to turn on for previous content to go live. Ever since the initial release of said content the live client has gone through many iterations and some weird behavior is bound to happen. And let’s not even bring up those that will rage because ArenaNet brought back a festivity without adding more content to it. All in all, it’s a situation that carries more risk than what it appears.

gw162
I’ve been doing lots of PvP lately.
We were losing this match 300 – 497 and we managed to win!

As for me, I’ve decided to spend my time till Heart of Thorns mostly in PvP. I’m having so much fun there. Recently, I played a match where my team was losing with a score like 300 to 497 and in the end we managed to win! Just picture that. My heart was racing like crazy as the opponents were chasing me looking for that single kill that will give them the victory. My hands were shaking as I managed to perform a stealth combo with next to zero life much to their surprise. Both teams had a great time and when the game was over we all congratulated each other. And that’s what really matters. It all comes down to having fun.

I’m not saying that I’m good at PvP, nor that the mode itself is perfect at its current state. What it has to offer though suits my current schedule. I can’t spend that much time playing games these days and the quick format of GW2’s PvP is exactly what I needed. All that fast-tempered action and those thrilling moments that have you cheering in the end.

I could give you some advice on how to enjoy the most out of PvP and perhaps propose a few features that would make it better as a whole but I guess that will have to wait for another post. We have kinda derailed the main topic of this one already anyway.

Going back to that then and summing up today’s talk, I’d like you to keep a single thing in mind out of all this. You play games because you are looking to have fun. Do not spend a single second of your life doing something that you do not like. Especially when we are talking about one of your hobbies. The release of Heart of Thorns is imminent and by letting the devs do their work without any additional pressure (trust me, they have a lot to deal with already) you will enjoy the end result more.

7 thoughts on “How I spend my time till Heart of Thorns

  1. I am a person who was ridiculously excited about the initial launch of the game. For one of the beta weekends, I actually neglected to show up in court to fight an easily beatable unjust traffic ticket just because the particular court was two hours away and would ruin my beta time! At launch, I was ecstatic. I got at least half-a-dozen folks to buy into the game and play along. I was having more fun that I have ever had with a video game, even in my long experience (I’m 37).

    Then I moved to a new city and a new job a few months later and life interruptions took me away. It became really hard to come back. Even with all of the Living World stuff (which I read about on the official website), I got the sense that GW2 wasn’t going to make it for some reason. That feeling persisted for two whole years, and so I didn’t play.

    The news of the expansion finally brought me back, though. It’s a big statement to the rest of the world that GW2 is still alive, and that it’s developers still believe in it. That’s something that people need to hear. My guild of about 10 is all starting to come back online from deep torpor into daily activity. I think that this is going to be huge for the game!

    But there is something that I’ve learned over the two years that I’ve been away: GW2 has actually seemed to add a lot more to their game during that time than something like WoW normally does over its time between expansions (which for them has stabilized into about every two years). The devs at Arenanet talk a lot (some say too much) about ‘laying the foundation for the future’ with a lot of the changes that they are making. I know that’s PR, marketing, and hype-speak, but it is also actually legitimately exciting. If they’ve been able to do all of these big living world story releases on top of putting out new big and fun zones like Southsun Cove, Dry Top, and Silverwastes during the two/three year lull between initial release and the first expansion, then the sky is literally the limit.

    When I quit playing GW2, the cow finisher was only available as a temporary boost, and everyone was asking, “What if they had a bunch more of these for sale?” When I left, there were only three armor sets in the gem store, there were no such things as Black Lion Claim Tickets, Ascended gear was only rumor, and Fractals didn’t even exist. When you take a step back and look at what has been done and what is about to be unleashed on us, the developers have not been resting on their laurels (also new)! They have been putting more heart and soul into this game than any other studio that I know about has given to their own games. I mean, crap, everything else just pretty much dies on the vine after its initial release. Only WoW and EVE and GW keep going, and to this observer, it looks like Arenanet is the one winning the content race.

    1. This is a great comment.

      I can sense your excitement from afar.

      Thank you for sharing it with us and for participating in the discussion on our site. It is good to have you here.

  2. Although I can’t really disagree with the points you’re making, I’m sure you will agree with me that at present there is actually next to zero things a seasoned player can do in the game. Personally, I log in for the reward and daily and either run a couple of dungeons or help a friend with their achievements (Dry Top and/or Silverwastes). Not really exciting, any more. As for PvP… I’m sure you’ve read all the negative tweets etc already. The matchup system and the subsequent drop outs (un-penalized, still) ruin the fun in most cases.

    Yes, the devs need time. But players need something to keep them busy too. I know the “no subscription” excuse is ever present (“go away and play smt else until HoT releases”, I hear that a lot!), but is that really even a fair response? What bugs me even more is that the devs have fallen silent… If they were more in touch with the people, soothing and hype-ing, informing and exciting… I’m sure they would reverse a big portion of the negative feelings that people currently have.

    1. I agree with everything you say. I think I mentioned all that in the post too.

      My take is that if they want to bring something that will keep the players busy till the release of the expansion they should have a small dedicated team working on said content. It’s very important that the roadmap to the expansion remains intact and the production value is not affected.

    2. I agree with you Nick; particularly those that say ‘go away and play something else in between’. And for an MMO game, that is odd because those games have always been sucking people in for the long run, and exclusively because it’s too exhausting to commit 100% to more than one MMO at a time. Then comes GW2 with its casual attitude, and I’m afraid it scares players away permanently with that take on things, because then players go to another “classic” MMO and find that they can’t go back because their progress in that new game would come to a halt.

      So, I need GW2 to deliver content that can keep me occupied in the long run. And a content hiatus from mid January until whenever HoT launches is really damaging my motivation. Good thing however that I could go back to GW1 and finish more titles there + I can always play PvP in GW2 – which I do daily. The combat is excellent in GW2 and I’ve never had more fun in an MMO than here, but lack of development for PvP/WvW is not so fun – the fact that after nearly 3 years we still just had our 2-month (far too long!) ladder test season is beyond me. That test season could’ve been 2 week long, the ladder looked more or less the same then with a far too heavy weighting of no. games played over skill.

      My own ambition during test season was getting as high win rate as possible, to defy the MMR that gravitates everyone towards 50% in which case only # games played becomes important for the ladder. I ended up 96%/97% as a casual, but with a win rate of 63% and half as many games as people around my position on the ladder. Not at all trying to say I’m good, but rather that the leaderboard/ladder could’ve been a nice way to boast skill in PvP but instead is a testament to who could no-life their way to the top.

      The EU winner played 1500+ matches over 2 months; that’s 25 games per day, and he’s lost as many as he won… skill? Actually, I remember him from a few matches as he climbed, because I played him a few times… nope, his skill didn’t warrant EU #1. Dedication to grind, yes, but is that what Anet should be rewarding from their PvP mode?

  3. This article speaks to me on a lot of levels, and I think your final point is the most important one: we play this for fun, and I think sometimes some people forget that.

    I feel the devs get a lot of flak and aren’t appreciated publicly as often as they deserve, and as you say there’d be a lot of work involved in bringing something like SAB back. I hear a lot of people saying it’d be “easy” and I get the impression that they think it’d just be the flip of a switch.

    As you say, I’d rather they spent their time working on HoT and making it as amazing as it could be.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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