Fun and Failing in Gw2 PvP

It seems the more I play guild Wars 2 the more I get rather frustrated with it. I kind of know how new players would feel about it all now as I just get that overwhelming feeling of direction less. When playing originally I always had the goal, and fall back play of pvp. That was mostly WvW but also the SPCA mode. Now just consuming the PvE side of the game I’m having to try really hard to discover some sense of direction.

The new zone, silverwaste seemed like the best idea and it probably was but after several vinewrath events and getting very little out of it, plus remaining a little frustrated with the myriad of mechanics your constantly meant to be aware of like keys, and shovels, and sand, and body parts, and those weird collection items your meant to infuse, and other crafting ingredients, and the myriad of new bag types that spam your inventory with useless items and gear. It just wasn’t something that kept my attention.

When there wasn’t any activity in the zone was weird too. I went to drytop and looked around for a bit but no one was there, events going to waste. I joined in on the event train for a bit. Watching the timer on a website and jumping where needed for a fair number of events and well, spamming skills for the few seconds it takes for whatever to fall over didn’t interest me back then and it certainly doesn’t now. Why people even follow this along for a handful of gold and a few items to immediately salvage is beyond me.

As predicted with the Tequatl event changes it was remarkably empty without the TTS group event going on, which I’m sad I missed.

So after getting all mopey in game I thought Screw it, and jumped into the SPvP again and am glad I did. I don’t know why I’d been holding back on it for so long but it was a lot of fun. I was terrible at it, appalling but it’s more that I’d forgotten how fast paced and tactile it all felt. How the skills feel and how strategic and reactionary much of them are. I really had forgotten what an enjoyable able combat system this was for PvP.

It’s a shame then that it really didn’t take off more than it should of. I mean I get why it didn’t, the map design and mechanics of the game modes aren’t that great and it was, and still is missing a lot of the functionality it needs. It’s gotten better, the new method for setting up you build and gear in the mists is great but then they have to add a bunch of new restrictions and have you buy certain traits, runes and gear types for PvP as well… Because be damned with the rest of that initial manifesto right?

Gw2 spvp restrictions

It is still just the fundamental issues they haven’t solved yet like the whole ranking fiasco, that algorithm has always been shite. Issues with premises and not. Then their is still the weir place custom matches are now not to mention the rather minimal population which makes it a little harder to find decent, balanced matches.

I like what they’ve done and it could, and can be so much more if they just break from the pattern they’ve fallen into. SPvP would make a decent standalone experience and then they wouldn’t be stuck in the weird place they are now with making it make sense within the whole.

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Going Back to GW2

So I’ve been exploring Guild wars 2 again and yep, it was news of the expansion that brought me back which makes me wonder even more about why they didn’t do it sooner. The living story just wasn’t for me and it was never something that was viewed in the same way as an expansion from the media either. No hype. No interest. Just an overwhelming feeling of MEHHH.

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Sylvari Drawing and Colouring

With a few people talking about drawing lately like MMO Gamer and on the twitters like Missy I’ve been kind of feeling the mood again too. I haven’t drawn much in years although, that is except a sylvari inspired outfit I was working on.

sylvari armour

This got me thinking about trying to actual colour it, not just with the coloured pencils I have around, in a box somewhere within the office clutter, but actually tryign to paint it digitally.

So I set to work in GIMP once more which I don’t think is terribly optimal for such things. I outlined the major points in Black, zooming in pretty close and folling along the lines with a small black Pencil. I then tried addings some block colours and realised that there were holes in those lines everywhere so I had to go over them all again.

I Then created a duplicate layer with these lines and placed it just underneath on the the Lines layers, that way if colour bleeds over a little the lines will still keep it clean.

Then I added the block colours to the picture.

sylvaribasec

From there I duplicated this layer and then began using the magic colour wand tool thingy to select base colours and add a little gradient to it. This seemed to work out pretty well although still doesn’t have the depth I wanted. From here, which I did a bit on the chin line, is adding some darker shading and blending it in. This layer is actually above my base lines as then you get those black lines peeking through after you’ve blended a bit creating a better, but smoother definition.

sylvariblend

Seems it’s working out (except for the feet, GRRRR) but taking a loooooong time. I probably should read up on how people actually do this instead of how I kind of fumbled around to do it

 

An Anniversary of Idiocy

I can’t believe I went and forgot to write up a post for the Guilds Wars 2, 2 year anniversary. A game a swore off long ago but due to the niggling comments of some now rests back on my hard drive. Looking at the happenings it doesn’t seem like there was really much going on for it compared to last year, some more junk prizes and the game going on sale but yeh… that was it.

I don’t have any news about it at all, and it seems no one else really did either although what is taking up the gw2 news lately is all the apparent issues with the new feature pack. As usual check out Inventory Full and Why I game for good recaps. Not much to add here as I haven’t played now since my brief trip to unlock a story point and that it. Not much point ranting anymore either although I could seriously create a separate GW2 hatter twitter handle and have plenty of ammo.

No new stuff to talk off but instead I’d thought I’d highlight some of my rants from the last 2 years that still remain a little relevant although there have been changes to some of these points. An account of my own idiocy as well as that of gw2. Oh, and they’re in ascending order based on time too.

  • During the new Year of 2012 I penned my wish list of 5 things for GW2 to change, add or improve and it’s worth the look. The number one, better client performance.
  • A lot of criticism has been made towards there Personal story and I was no different claiming that it overuses boring and tripe themes as well as being far too guided.
  • My sentiments towards ftp are probably well known by now but I also rallied against the monetization of Gw2 and the practices guiding development.
  • When the Living world first started I talked a little about the design approach and that of it’s impact on the world making the claim that it really isn’t living at all.
  • My favourite rant about the Horizontal Handicap and how there really sin’t that many options for fluff to consume yourself with, or options that matter.
  • A Dialogue of Dissent looked at the creeping changes towards achievement focused play in GW2 and the industry.
  • My most controversial Rant, A game of Grind. Grind for gear and grind for gold that was in a larger proportions due to the lack of goals and certain optimal paths that still have terrible rng.
  • Last year during the Anniversary I gave a recap of how I was feeling that looked into the elements of WvW and what’s been updated, what’s broken and what’s needed.
  • With a tired treadmill I talk once more about the ever-present and soul crushing grind and highlight this with the disconnect between what the devs were saying and the implementation.
  • In Monetizing the Masses I attack a few elements of GW2’s Buy to play Model that really.. REALLLY annoy me
  • A relevant post to the discussion now where I look at the last Feature pack and How it really wasn’t that spectacular merely a collection of quality of life fixes that should have been implemented a long time ago, fixing something they broke and just needed functionality

And there you go, a collection of rather interesting rants regarding my revulsion for all that is gw2. It’s not that bad though and be aware when reading these that I love to embellish and over exaggerate. They are still large issues in my mind and issues that pushed me away from the game but not elements that everyone will be worried by.

Enjoy

Events and Opinions of Gamergate

I didn’t really know how to start this post. I’ve been meaning to write about the literal explosion of idiocy happening in gamergate for a while now after reading about those first rather heated accusations and attacks. At that stage though it just looked to be another sad occasion of gamer rage at girls in gaming. A little something like this.

tantrum

But it’s not that at the moment, well, it is but the level of which the recent gamer issue has gone far beyond my personal bounds of reasoning. I’m literally Jackie Chan each and every morning when going over the happenings so I thought  I’d wade into the depths once more, shining  that lovely beacon of “go fuck yourself”. Hmm that would be fun but maybe I’ll try being level headed instead… Yeh, we’ll see how long that lasts. Plus I have lots of gifs that need using.

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GW2 and Content Charges

I’ve been reading a bit about the new Living story updates for Guild Wars 2 and, it has me intrigued. Not enough to go in there yet but enough to prod my attention towards it so I’ll be reading a little more about the story and changes to come.

There have been several great round-ups already on the new changes, of these and I’d probably recommend Inventory Full, Sygnus and Why I game of those but then I know I’m forgetting some as well. I just wasn’t paying that much attention at first until a little way into it. A new, growing zone to exploring, a better story telling approach and with the journal it won’t feel like such a constant achievement grind.

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GW2: Featuring the Failures

Now I barely follow Guild wars 2 news anymore, once I stop playing that’s pretty much the end. I’ve unsubscribed from the reddit, never visit the forums and glance over most articles on it. I read a little on the end of living story season one and it seems like they might finally have wrapped up the story well. I’m not sure they needed a year of fetch quests to do it but it certainly looked impressive.

The other recent news piece that piqued my interest was this so-called “feature’ pack and all I can think was what.. utter bullshit. Seriously, a feature pack. They certainly are the masters of artfully manipulating language to form a good impression of even basic mmo principles that have been tried and used many times before. When I look at the list of changes coming that have been outlined by the recent blog posts what I see is just regular mmo updates.

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Pretty Pics: So Long GW2

So I finally uninstalled GW2 from the computer after all this time, I’ve been absent for months so this had to come eventually but it’s still kind of a big deal to me. I was playing for a long time and it was the first big title I discussed here on the blog, with many more posts than any other game… or mmo combined. Over 100 posts.. woah.

Just being there on the desktop there adds the pressure that I should be playing it and joining in with the guild. I’ve been absent for so long and it’s the only game we all tend to play regular but I just can’t put myself through that. Logging in adds a bit of needless frustration as I love the game but can’t help dredge up all the issue surrounding it and about what it could have been.

It was time to free myself from that so it’s gone now and I can’t see myself downloading it again, not with all these new titles coming up and the wealth of steam games. Even though I’ve criticised it a lot over the year… A LOT, more so than anyone else I know yet it was still an amazing experience and I wish the game and everyone playing well for the future.

Anyway, after doing that I was putting all my pics into the external hard drive and thought to look through them all and pick out some of my favourites.

Listmas 2013: Favourite MMO Experiences

It has been a really slow year for mmo’s; limited schedule of new releases, what seems like only a few major expansions and a bunch of patches containing the same drudgery. Despite this though I’ve still has some amazing experience throughout the year that I will look back on fondly for years to come.

So here’s my favourite MMO experiences of the year

Firefall

There was just something about the focus on freedom and lack of restraints on content that made it an amazing experience. Even starting out from the beginning I could join in with major raids or open world bosses; I could join in and contribute with some of the hardest content available and I could play where and how I wanted whole still being able to progress my character and account.

It was a game with a plethora of options on how to progress. Multiple frames focusing on a style of play, further your crafting abilities, collecting cosmetics and accumulating wealth and you can do all this in a variety of ways. I could always play with friends in whatever was happening, Battleframe progression didn’t matter in terms of  dungeons and alternative zones and my damage or healing was still useful… and I was always being rewarded useful materials and items.

There was also a wide world of events that were actually dynamic and not just events bound by restraints, they could and did spawn anywhere and at any time. It was also a game that encouraged you to be in and explore the world.. and it was rather lovely to explore.

Firefall

Rift

Rift was my first hardcore mmo. I spent countless hours levelling , researching and healing people in battlefields and I was in love with it for many many months. I also believe it was an important point in bringing me to this blogging lifestyle so to say I have a soft spot for the title is an understatement.

Coming back after over a year has been an extreme nostalgia overload, something I’ve never felt as strongly as this before. I’ve gone back and played plenty of games from my youth but Rift was the one that filled me with that warm fuzzy feeling. Remembering all the good times, the people I met, becoming part of a great guild and challenging my abilities far more than I had done before. I was hooked and, still am to that MMO buzz.

Rift has changed a lot over this last couple years, so much so that it’s always like a new game at time but the core of what appealed to me is still there, maybe not as bright but there’s still a twinkle. An interesting world to explore, a sensibility towards playing with others and that familiar sense of combat once more. Plus I get to collect shiny things again aaaand make a HOUSE!

rift

Guild Wars 2

I’ve ranted and raved a lot about GW2 over the year, more so than I would have liked but it was a game that incited me to rage based on how much I loved many parts of it. It has a wonderful foundation waiting underneath.. if only those god damn devs would stop squandering it..

Anyway, there were a lot of great point to the game but my favourite experiences would always come from the Wuv Wuv mode. If I was to write a top 10 events in GW2 they would all be some sort of battle that began either defending and attacking keeps or one of those brilliant open field engagements.

.I loved the thrill of this battlefield, the adrenalin that pumped through your body during a fight and the hidden complexity of combat that only seems to come out with your coordinated group. It was something that created that sort of trained focus, that challenge which seems to come out when you’re working together as a group: mindlessly working, moving and fighting as one in some sort of brilliant interactive dance that is forever changing its inner tune. There is nothing quite as exhilarating as open world combat and even with all its flaws Guild Wars 2 never failed to disappoint during combat.

Gw2

It was also the resurgence in community I felt due to our inclusion in WvW. It is a game type that brings servers together for a common goal, constant communications amongst its members that creates long-term friendships and guild connections. A strength of bringing people together through mutual goals and of course mutual hate.

Darkfall

I’ve said a lot on Darkfall‘s failing and how it just wasn’t the pvp experience I was looking for. The combat was lacklustre and cumbersome, and it was missing a lot of features to make it an interesting sandbox experience. I don’t think it will ever be the PvP mmo people are looking for but it still has that unmistakable open world appeal.

That feeling of caution when travelling the world, apprehension at seeing another player nearby and that all-encompassing feeling of tension the world has. That alone is a thrilling experience to have at times and is what I’m after. I don’t want to feel like some invincible hero, and I miss the choice that comes from giving players control of their experience.

With the full loot and item loss it was also experience that brought out those risk reward analysis of each and every situation whether that be the thrill of attaining something amazing and then that utter crushing feeling of having it taken off you in the next instant. Those extremes of play can only be found when you allow the extremes of loss as well and I would love to feel that more often.

A rather contested monster Spawn

Even though there wasn’t much new out this year I’ve still had a fantastic time gaming in our multi-player worlds. There are some great titles out there for every interest and it seems, this will only be getting better in the new year.

Controlling Castles and Adding Investment

There has been a resurgence in interest of the World vs World mode in Guild Wars 2 of late. It seems the new leagues, a 7 week battle royale between the servers in particular groups to place in the number one spot has been a big hit. A lot of new players entered the mode, brought on by the focus on this content, an increase in visibility and the promise of rewards. The result has been huge queues on many servers and a massive increase in casual players.

With this has also come a few bloggers writing up reports on their experiences as well as analysing the mechanics and well, some of them have been getting it a bit wrong. It’s hard to understand any sort of mechanic the first time you jump in, I would give an appalling account of the fractals but that hasn’t stopped many of these new and a little uninformed players from critiquing WvW. Now I’m nowhere near a “pro” player and I’ve been out of it for a couple of months now, I have never commanded nor have I been much involved with the server communities but I do think the weeks and months I spent raiding wvw near every night and the 800 or so hours spent give me a greater sense of understanding
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