Learn the lessons of the past before they bite you in the tuckus

It doesn’t take much to set off the Guild Wars drama community — after all, they practice every day and have a full stage crew — so don’t be too surprised at all of the nerdrage going on about the announcement of additional vertical gear progression being added to the game.

I’m not going to have the time or inclination to do major gear chasing in GW2, so this is just a sideshow to me.  And while I don’t have a photographic memory on what ArenaNet did and did not say in the past, I do have a recollection that the studio was being pretty firm in its stance that GW2 wasn’t going to be about major gear progression in the endgame.  On top of adding a new tier of gear, this gear will have special sockets that allow for a new stat to be added — a stat that will be the only thing to allow players to venture deep into the new dungeon coming to the game.

Now this, this I know.  I know this because LOTRO did it for years.  It was called Radiance, and it was about as popular and beloved as a scabby plague rat scatting all over your oatmeal in the morning.  It was so popular and beloved, in fact, that players started rallying against it the minute it went into the game and didn’t let up until Turbine finally admitted that it was a mistake to gate dungeons with this limiting gear and finally removed Radiance altogether.  I’d be hard-pressed to name another system that was as reviled and botched as this one, that’s how bad it was.

But hey.  You go, ANet.  I’m sure it’ll be way better this time around.  You… do read the news once in a while, yes?


13 thoughts on “Learn the lessons of the past before they bite you in the tuckus

  1. James November 13, 2012 / 4:55 pm

    SWG’s Combat Upgrade was more hated than LOTRO’s Radiance….but, damn, I sure hated Radiance!!
    Syp, what server are you on in GW2? You used to have the list of toons at the top, but I don’t see it anymore 😦

  2. Ravious November 13, 2012 / 5:01 pm

    The thing about this is unlike Radiance, you can still play the dungeon in GW2. If you want that dungeon to be harder (and likely have better loot rolls) then you need Agony resistance. So basically people that just want to experience the dungeon are not prevented from doing so…. unlike Radiance.

  3. Yeebo November 13, 2012 / 6:04 pm

    Radiance was awful awful awful. It was a clumsy gating mechanic Turbine used to slow down progression through their endgame to try and hide the fact that the endgame of launch MoM was so thin.

  4. Mekhios November 13, 2012 / 6:41 pm

    I would like ArenaNet to add more content to their existing areas and more active content to race cities. Not sure why they feel the need to suddenly provide more content to the 5% of players who care about endgame.

    Where are hobbies? Where is player housing? Where is guild housing?

  5. MMORaid November 13, 2012 / 7:03 pm

    Adding a gear grind only 2 1/2 months post launch is just a horrible move.Ascended gear is just a quick fix for those PvE only players who are complaining there’s nothing to do at endgame, but dont like PvP or WvW. I’ve been playing since the game launched and haven’t been the slightest bit bored yet, but of course I spend at least half of my time in WvW, so I’m don’t need a false sense of progression, ala Ascended gear, to feel like I’m doing something. Yes to hobbies, yes player and guild housing, yes to anything sandbox.

  6. jaggins November 13, 2012 / 7:24 pm

    My concern is that Anet has gone against their implicit promise to the players about not setting up a gear grind situation. There are great threads on the GW 2 subreddit that detail the quotes made by devs about Anet’s intentions for the game regarding gear in contrast to this new direction. (Which I hate, for the record.)

  7. bernardparsnip November 13, 2012 / 8:25 pm

    Like the other posters, what concerns me is not the mechanic (We’ve seen it before) but the fact that ArenaNet has been pushing GW2 as a different kind of game, only to change tack 2 months after launch.

    The implicit suggestion is that a themepark MMO cannot surprise without a dungeon-based endgame with vertical gear progression.

  8. Mekhios November 13, 2012 / 8:38 pm

    “The implicit suggestion is that a themepark MMO cannot surprise without a dungeon-based endgame with vertical gear progression.”

    Yup which the majority of players won’t worry about anyway. As I said on another blog where are hobbies, where is player housing, where is guild housing?

  9. ScytheNoire November 14, 2012 / 12:50 am

    I was thinking the same thing when I read about this. “Didn’t this already fail horribly in every other MMO, especially LotRO and their radiance gear?” I guess ArenaNet is going to have to learn the hard way, making specific gear you have to grind for is an instant failure.

  10. silvertemplar November 14, 2012 / 1:06 am

    “Where are hobbies? Where is player housing? Where is guild housing?”

    It’s in Rift for now 😉

    The next question is “Where are the mounts?”

    Another thing i’m missing from GuildWars 2 is more customizability with the classes. I still feel GuildWars 1 was alot more flexible with this (dual classing anyone?) . It’s particularly amusing to note that GW2 got 8 classes , requiring you to have 8 characters. Rift on the other hand, got 4 “roles” and each have 8 “classes” (which you can dual/treble class). The difference is shocking if you jump between games like i’m doing at the moment, in GW2, my character is pretty static, (you generally have a build for PvE and another build for PvP, not much inbetween). The ONLY thing that i can change is GEAR . In Rift, i can spend hours just changing my build, nevermind the gear.

    Admittedly GW2 got the more exciting combat system, but due to the nature of the PvE content (repetitive) it will become an issue , once you run out of progression options, just like any other MMO really. So a combat system can be as “active” as Call of Duty, if your only progression path is “bigger guns” then you better have extreme dynamic content going.

  11. El Mutharino November 14, 2012 / 8:05 am

    Unfortunately, the people who can’t have fun without turning a game in a sort of second job (o ‘only’ job in most cases) have been tremendously active on the forums since the start, crying FAIL, NO ENDGAME! and these are the results. Having public forums, this time around, was the greatest error anet could make…

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