The reason i'm writing this, is because i need an outlet on the things that annoy or even depress me about the end game or some of the mechanics of guild wars 2 and i would like to hear some opinions.
I have a level 80 mesmer, finished the story and play with 5 of my closest friends in a guild. I have explored the world (100%) and i am now looking for stuff to do, but i just can't find the motivation to start up the game and play. And here are some reasons why:
(note: i'm german, english is not my native language and my english can be a little bit rough at times, so please excuse typos etc)
1. There is no "end game", not now. I've read the post that one of the guild wars 2 devs posted about their end game and it really sounds great on paper but i have seen it all by now and i don't want to do most of the stuff again. fighting dragons? yeah, the encounters are cool, but the rewards are basically a joke, which has to do with the incredible poor designed item system for PVE (more to that later). dungeons? sure, but they often don't work properly. We've had problems for the last three nights in a row with events in dungeons that prohibited us from playing any further. When the dungeons (or the joining as a group to a dungeon) work, the rewards for the ok designed encounters are still poor and not a reason to come back, which again, is a problem of the item system. Why should i complete the ashford dungeon over and over again, to get the ascalonian tears, if i can craft exactly the same items in 2 minutes time? there's no unique loot for the dungeons (except 1 or 2 of the later ones, that drop more exotic stuff). And yeah, we did ashford yesterday again, two of the three ways and guess what: both of the final enemies where the same. same model, same position in the dungeon. they changed one skill on the enemy and that was that. that's not really unique design that's ensuring replayability, right?
2. PVP as an end game option? Here in germany, it's most of the time unplayable. I have a 16 mbit connection and it lags all the time, for everyone involved. You can't finish one sPVP game without having the game freeze on you for 2 seconds. And if you're doing pvp, there's no real reward either. They had a great idea when they seperated the PVP from the PVE, which makes for more balanced games and a more levelled playing field, but why did they do it only for sPVP? why do they allow your weapons and equip in WvWvW? My friend, who's playing a LVL 80 thief, can 3-hit guys in WvW, because of the Equip he farmed in PvE. When you're not level 80 yet and you still have your blue items, you're gonna have a really bad time in WvWvW. Especially when one of the servers you're matched against has an active PVP guild with great equip, there's no chance you that you will have any fun on your home world or the center map. If the matched servers are ok, then WvWvW is really kind of cool and makes a lot of fun. Especially the siege weapons and getting some friends together, capturing castles and supply camps. But if you want to do sPVP, you can't play with your friends so easily. (you can't play wvwvwvw easily either, because of the totally random waiting times, that can take between 10 minutes and 2 hours). Why did they do this shitty server browser thing? This is not a FPS. Let me join sPVP with the group i'm currently in! It's nice that they can join my match, but what good it is that they're not on my team?!
3. Items. Ugh. So, one of my BIGGEST complains about GW2 is the item system that's in place. First of all: man, there are like 5 models for every type of armor. I've seen 5 leather head designs for thieves and engis so far and my character looks totally the same SINCE LEVEL 50! The coloring option is great and it gives you a neat system to style your character ..but i don't care if my armor is in a different color when the armor looks just bad. I have a human, female mesmer and i have to look totally sexy, i get that... but i don't really want to look like a character from some medieval anime who's basically naked. give me something to work for. i want to look as bad-ass as my sword does.
Then there's the stats system, which could not have been designed lazier. Ok, not really "lazy", but it is in total contradiction to everything playing a MMORPG stands for: Building a character after your likes that gets more powerful and more badass to look at. As i said: i'm level 80 and i don't know where to go from here. I'm maxed out. how? I was standing in lions arch for a couple of hours, maxed tailoring to 400 and build me the exotic armor "of the beserker". Now, the thing is: there's no armor that's better then that and EVERYONE can learn those recipes. The ascalonian tears i talked about earlier? They are - and every dungeon has this kind of thing - a currency to buy armor in lions arch. Like, a reward for doing good in those dungeons. But why should i do the dungeons, if the armor that i can buy is ugly and has the same or worse stats then the armor i can craft? i have not seen a single piece of armor that is not better then ones i have.
And there's a fatique to that. The items you'll find always have the same stats, they always have the same names because of that. "oh, another axe of the beserker of the shaman". Beserker means: Crit Damage, Power and Precision and there's no change to that. Sure, there are other "Stats", like Eagle, explorer and so on, but the game is so narrowed in its item design, that you will not find a single weapon or piece of armor that is unique. Remember that cool axe from WoW, where every 4th hit, there would be a chain-lightning and it had like 300 agility on it, and you hit super fast with it? (i made this item up to make my point) There are no items like that in guild wars. There's even a DMG cap to the items! I have the best Broadsword you can get (again, crafted by a friend). Sure i could get a legendary weapon, but do you know what? they're not really better. My broadsword has a max dmg cap of 1100. you know what the legendary item (that will take you WEEKS to farm) will get you? 1117. yup. 7 dmg more. That's fucking imba.
And man, the items that drop in PVE, PVP or the dungeons are so f'in boring. If it's not exotic, i will not use it. period. I've even made a thing, where i do one of the following things, without hesitation: blue -> reclaim, green -> vendor, yellow -> reclaim (for ectoplasma). If it's not exotic, it's not useful. period. I'm drawing comparisons with WoW here, because i played it for 9 months in 2005 and remember some things quite well: some of those weapons in WoW had a story to them. Man, when you've seen someone with the new sword from naxrammas, with its unique model, its crazy glow and those awesome stats you just wanted to have it! and i did get it and was so f'in happy about it. There's no point for me to do the dungeons in GW2, because they don't reward like other games do. Once i've done them all, i'm done with them.
Then there's also the point that you can buy diamonds (? i don't know what they're called in the english version) with real world money. and you then can exchange those diamonds for in-game gold. It's nice idea on paper: prohibiting the gold farming market by introducing your own service for gold buying. but this comes to another point, that's kinda stange: you can buy a perfect exotic equip in one hour, with not more then 10-20 euros. and when you've done that, you're done with your characters equip. and that's the shittiest thing that there is in a MMORPG.
4. Crafting - more like how fast can you get to 400? Being a cook in GW2 is awesome. Really. It was SO much fun to discover all the recipes and stuff, to get the food i needed and then to stock them in my bank so i have it on my hands when i need them. But it's imbalanced as hell. You know, they said that a level roughly takes a player 1 1/2 to get, even in the late game (60+). But it just can't be, that i can get 6-7 levels in 20 minutes of crafting in lions arch. how's that? as the recipes get more high level, you will get more xp for them. makes sense. but at one point, you will get double the xp from crafting a piece of pizza then you will get from killing a champion in the orr areas. that's just batshit crazy.
And i'm missing unique recipes. There are no recipes that drop randomly, that you can use to sell your service to other players. if another player has maxed taylor and bought all the recipes (which you'll have to do), he can do the same stuff as you. There should be value in crafting something unique or in some of the recipes but there's not. I know that there are recipes that you can find through the mystic forge, but they will only get you those really "great" legendary items that are,, unless you're completely insane, a total waste of time and in game money.
phew. i'm getting long here. still with me? Just one more point, even if i can name some more.
4. Events and Quests - Grind. Grind. Grind. GRIND. When you first read about the event and quest system for Guild Wars 2 you were thinking: "Oh shit! This is the game changer right here!".. and yes, it kinda is.. but it needs A LOT of work and way more dedication when it comes to the design of the actual events. It's so amazing that you can get anywhere on the map and there will be players, doing a quest or an event. you want to do the same thing and you don't even have to search groups or have to be worried that they're kill stealing all the time. Hell, they will even rez you without asking and they don't even know you! THAT IS INCREDIBLE. But the dynamic group stuff can be as cool as it is, when the quests or events you're doing are no fun at all. The thing is: there are 3 types of things you will always do, in any kind of quest: kill, gather, tidy. everytime. As a human, i started in an area with a lot of zentaurs. Want to know what my goal was, most of the time? Kill zentaurs and their housings. And it's grinding alright. You will kill, gather or tidy until the the bar is full, open your message, take the money and move on. When did you ever read a quest from one of the quest givers? And if you did, when was it something interesting? I was starting to get tired of quests when i wasn't even level 30. they're the same, ALL THE TIME. But phew, the orr areas don't have quests anymore. But man: events are not better. Defend this point, kill this big monster. that's mostly it. And skill challenges? How is it a challenge to "communicate with this thingy" to get a free skill point? It's like they ran out of ideas.
So. i'm stopping now. this took me 20 minutes or so. All in All i really hope that there will be some new end game content or some fixes coming regarding lags etc. I was a big fan of the first guild wars and was looking for something really unique here, but i am mostly diasappointed right now. Good thing there are no monthly costs to it. And note: i really had some fun playing the game.
to close things off: WATER COMBAT AND UNDERWATER EVENTS ARE THE WORST.