I cant really see anything there. Especially the molten core fire attack is way over the top.
More like everywhere, can't see kitten in most content even with only 5 people.
I agree. Since PoF there has been a ton of "everything explodes" type of content where you are perhaps not required to dodge everything and take less damage but there's a ton of visual spam anyhow.
Examples for me include:
- Several PoF story missions, especially fights against Balthazar and Amala.
- The Twilight Oasis Fractal end boss fight
- Siren's Reef Fractal boss fights
- now Molten Furnace weapons testing facility. Golems to fight, old testing mechanics, the Molten core thingie blanketing at least 1/4 of the playing field and best with instabilities like "we bleed fire" and "flux bomb" etc.
Even being able to complete T4 fractals with 3 people the added chaos does not increase the level of fun for me. You get pushed, pulled, thrown around, moa-ed. Sometimes a little less, but with more impact, should do the trick.
A good example would be the Nightmare fractal for me where you can learn the telegraphs and you can always see well what is happening.
This is not a design problem of fractals, IMO this is a design problem of the game as it currently is.
The floor gets plastered with AoEs, and especially without basically perma-stab you get CCd all the time. No amount of CC-break is going to save you. I see this pattern in fractals, I see it in some story instance - where we could argue that this is just a bad design in this specific instance.
But I see the same patterns in WvW, where the players generate the content! This leads me to believe, that we're not looking at a bad design in these specific fractals, but in the underlying patterns. It is a design pattern that favors group composition and build options over actual skill.
What we need is a clear communication of mechanics - no guessing which zones you can ignore, and which you absolutely have to dodge.
Especially high amount of CCs are a big annoyance, because they take away the ability to do something. Even stunbreaks don't really help, because you get CCd right again. CC in short intervals is a bad idea, because it takes away player agency, and from a design point of view taking away player agency should be minimized.
At least counterplay is possible: You need basically perma-stab and counterheals; should enable you to_ simply ignore most of the mechanics_. I am just not sure this kind of gameplay should be the target goal. The goal should be_ learning mechanics and learning how to play using the mechanics,_ not circumventing the mechanics.
As @MLinni.6109 can testify, when we do fractals we usually have a group composition like this - and our composition is not 100% optimal, but it works very well for us:
Especially the (!) marked characters are very vital to get our group working!
What does this allow us to do? Our burn FB and Spellbreaker walk up to the currently most dangerous enemy and whack the hell out of them. On my Spellbreaker I stay on that most dangerous enemy basically all the time ignoring almost all damaging zones. Thanks to perma-stab we don't need to worry about CC. Thanks to the healing (and warrior damage mitigation / active defenses) CC and damaging zones mostly do not worry me at all. The only mechanic I really pay attention to is the breakbar. It appears, it goes down almost immediately, thanks to Rev and Spellbreaker CC.
It's like easy mode fractals. Even Amala is a lot more easy like this than, for example, on my Mirage, or when we lack the healing power, or, heaven forbid, the stability!
I am not sure that this game design is intended and I am also not sure AoE spam really overcomes this behavior; if anything it strengthens this behavior pattern. Can't dodge all that stuff anyways, so just stay there and find a way to tank through it. This reinforces build strength over player skill (again, a pattern I am very familiar with from WvW).
"and then we know that we have looked back through the ivory gates into that world of wonder which was ours before we were wise and unhappy"
-- H. P. Lovecraft - Celephais