NC Soft Q4 earnings report. GW2 25% decline over Q3 - Page 4 — Guild Wars 2 Forums

NC Soft Q4 earnings report. GW2 25% decline over Q3

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  • maddoctor.2738maddoctor.2738 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Gehenna.3625 said:
    The other thing with expansions is that when an expansion doesn't work out well, people will give it another shot often with the next expansion. That's what PoF did and it worked a lot better. In fact PoF was a success and turned the trend around and after the two sales quarters of having a new expansion out, the revenue after was higher than before the release until Q4 of 2018. That's when it sunk back to the pre-PoF levels and has now gone down to the lowest quarter revenue in GW2 history.

    Remember that the game went free to play when HOT was released, so the company lost a lot of revenue there. The game WAS selling before going free to play. Also remember that during the time of POF, HOT was also selling. In fact after POF was released Arenanet was earning money from TWO expansions at a time, inflating the POF numbers. In Q4 2019 HOT went free with the purchase of POF and we see the results. I wonder how the POF numbers would look like if HOT was free from the start.

    People blame the direction, the saga, the templates, the balance or anything else for the drop in Q4 2019, but from a business standpoint, making an expansion that sells $20 a pop go free, WILL have a noticeable effect on revenue.

  • Can't speak for every lost dollar, but I can speak for mine.
    1. This episode was ruined for me by bugs, brevity and failed communication (T3 weapons). By the time answers were given and changes made my give a kitten was busted. I still have not finished the episode, which is seriously out of character for me. My main main toon does not fall behind 100% completion of every story and every map.
    2. the uncertainty of such a massive rebalance of wvw has had me spending conservatively, actually not at all since the day prior to episode release. Quite frankly I am concerned my spending could be wasted if the rebalance strikes out like this episode release. Couple that with the layoffs and I'm just afraid to spend like i once did.

  • Killthehealersffs.8940Killthehealersffs.8940 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 15, 2020

    @Asum.4960 said:

    @Vayne.8563 said:

    @zealex.9410 said:

    @Vayne.8563 said:

    @Shadowmoon.7986 said:
    This is my hot take. Anets gamble to cater to the vocal minority of toxic casuals on this board by giving access to everything and lowering the difficulty curve has backfired.
    Add to that they angered pvp, wvw, and hardcore pve players with build templates and specifically their monitization. These communities were already salty after the saga announcement and getting scraps.
    I can tell you after August 30 many of my raid friends left for ff14, and then build templates came, and rest of them followed suit. I am sure anets partially to blame for ff14 increased revenue.

    I have a differnet interpretation. The hard core crowd, long disenfranchised has gone into so many threads on some many forums talking about how the game is dying or in maintainence mode without any context that people started to believe it, even though it's not true for everyone. Every one I know who posts on reddit has walked away except me, because of a small group of really hard core dedicated people who delight in saying the game is dying whenever they can. This is far more likely that the so-called toxic casuals. In fact, HoT didn't actually increase the playerbase, because if it had, PoF would have been more like HoT. Anet has the numbers, we don't. The odds are they are trying to find a balance, but they're not looking to sink they're own ship. If Anet is making content more casual, it's because there are more casual players. It's just simple logic.

    Pof was not like hot because hot got alot of feedback, no map had a real meta and you saw that post hot the quickly course corrected that with meta events in lw.

    That's a vast simplification of the differences between HoT and PoF, starting with soloable hero points and ending with bountis instead of metas as the main content. Less timed and more immediate. Content on demand. Also the zones were less perplexing. Also it was easier to get and finish leveling masteries. There were a whole host of changes between the expansions, involving a lot more than just metas. The expansions felt completely different. Took people forever to "grind" out HoT masteries, but you didn't really hear that complaint about PoF.

    My point is if HoT was a hot expansion (pun intended) why make it different? Why change it up? Why make all those changes if HOT did well for the company? Every company I know sees something succesful and does more of the successful thing. My guess is HOT wasn't successful or PoF would have been more like HOT.

    Because that's a huge problem in management that Anet has in general. They spend ages developing a foundation for a decent new system/style of content, release it, get some feedback about it's flaws that really need to be fixed for it to be actually great, and then they ignore most feedback, abandon the system/style of content and go on to develop something inferior instead, and on and on.
    They are constantly changing things up that worked well for inferior products, while rarely going back to fix up past errors to truly make those efforts shine.
    It's like they are eternally stuck in "building the foundation" for something, without ever fully realising a vision.

    PoF would in no way have survived a content draught the like of which followed HoT and probably was financially entirely saved due to the hype and monetization of mount skins and content wise getting saved by a continuation of LW Season 4 just 2 months later, while HoT with it's slightly more hardcore direction kept players engaged and spending for almost an entire year until the next Living World season started.

    And that's with HoT being marketed as system building expansion which future content would benefit from, while PoF was the "content" expansion.

    As for the current dive in earnings, while that is ofc unfortunate, it's evenly expected and deserved in a way.
    The push for more casual only content with LW over proper expansions as well as lack of longterm repeatable endgame content like Fractal (CM's) and Raids and features like ESpecs to refresh the gameplay experience, followed by nails in the coffin for hardcore players like the pushing out of Arc to be replaced by a massively overmonitized inferior system which would have hardcore players see spending literally over a thousand euros/dollars to get half their builds and functionality back, combined with the layoffs, followed up by even the last company founders jumping ship, was just the roughest of ride the game ever had.

    Most if not all players I know, including myself, went from hardcore players with at least occasional or even high spending to either just playing casually or quitting altogether (mainly due to lack of Raid and Fractal content as well as the template fiasco), with no spending anymore at all. That's probably true for a lot more players as well.

    Imagine if some people whined about the HoT 60 dollar payprice , and tried to create kittenstorm on the forums, saying that the company had lied to them and didnt offer an extra coy of Vanilia GW2 (so they can have 2 accounts for the daily logins) :P

    If you want more hardcore raids , you can gather 1000 raiders and start a kickstarter
    With 8 dollars per month (not used not ingame) , the company can assign a old employer that knows the engine code and hire 2 fresh low payed colleges students .
    The majority of the casuals are not ''forced'' to pay in content they dont likw (Raids-Fractals)
    They have the data , casuals didnt like that stuff . Some1 else must pay for them .
    You dont want to spent moeny ingame , where you dont know where the money will be used ... then gather 1000 raiders and kickstart them on a reddit site
    Who knows ...there might be a survey in the future , where each time you buy gems with money , you will be asked to wich percentage will be used in each erea of the game . And the parton (if they wished) can be shown in each time a Raid will be released on this site .And if you ''kick'' a parton ''accidentaly''(didnt do enought dps + die twice) .....offff ...lets wait if he funds the next raid :P
    If the 8000 dollars per months goal is not reached , the people that spent the money will be offered another survey ,where they will choose a) Raid will be delayed for next month (if will be used to ''fill'' next month goal) , b) reloacate them to somewhere else

    Just let me have fun for a while

  • reddie.5861reddie.5861 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 15, 2020

    didnt read half the kitten, but coming from lineage 2, years ago.
    its quite easy to explain why lineage 2 and BnS (maybe lineage also) and mobile games are out performing gw2..

    if u dont buy half the kitten they put in store (for limited time) ur basically kitten for the next X weeks/months untill they put the new even stronger overpowered item in store. on top of that its not like ur gonna buy 1 like in gw2(even tho gw2 has no pay2win) no u need to buy atleast 2 and then put them together and wait for the RNG to kick in so they make stage 2 (for example) and then u need 2 new items to make another stage 2 (again with RNG) to make stage 3 (takes 2 stage 2 items) which has again RNG

    so ye these games are just milking to living kitten out of you and if u wanna stay on top PvP wise ur gonna have to follow it.

    so comparing a game like guildwars 2 to the other ncsoft games isnt really showing anything cus like it or not GW2 is a holy grail among MMO's where p2w isnt a thing YET.

  • Leablo.2651Leablo.2651 Member ✭✭✭

    And in another part of the industry, WoW Classic doubled the game's subscription revenue, the highest quarterly jump on record. It's very likely that some of those players were from GW2, and they spent some months in WoW. One quarter of results is not enough to attribute anything without specifics. What we know from the report is that the two other non-Lineage games also experienced a sudden drop in Q4. GW2's own problems cannot explain that, but an external competitor could affect these 3 NC games in the same way. At least, it seems to be a better fit for the data that we have. I'll reserve judgment until after Q1.

  • Gehenna.3625Gehenna.3625 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @kharmin.7683 said:

    @Gehenna.3625 said:
    In fact PoF was a success and turned the trend around and after the two sales quarters of having a new expansion out, the revenue after was higher than before the release until Q4 of 2018.

    Might be more of a success due to the introduction of mounts than any other content released in PoF. A new expansion won't offer such a radical, game-changing feature and would not share the same level of success, IMO.

    The introduction of mounts was a big part of PoF and part of PoF. Acting like it was it's own separate little thing is just silly. It's exactly the type of thing that gave the game a new paradigm and it came with an expansion. Without that, the revenue stream is not likely to ever go up again. It might keep going down to a point however where it's not sustainable anymore. Is that what you want?

    Also there were some more changes to how they approached things and the desert theme was definitely something different again. So that was a big visual addition. The mounts and the masteries associated with them also were easier to accomplish than in HoT so that more players could get on board. That also helped a lot and I'm sure that I'm not the only one that afterwards felt encouraged to give the HoT ones another try and I did.

    And I find it strange that you would assume they can't do anything else with a new expansion. I would suggest not mirroring your lack of imagination on the developers. You sound like you're throwing in the towel and accepting defeat. There are things that can be done that would change the way the game feels to play. Now I will say that it doesn't have to be an expansion that delivers such things but expansions did bring such things. Regardless of the success financially it did also add to the longevity. Just imagine if this game didn't have mounts, gliding, masteries and not the maps that came with HoT and PoF that are indeed quite different in their own ways. Do you think that the game would have sustained itself with just these chapters? You really think people wouldn't have gotten bored a lot more and faster without those expansions?

    I mean really, how do you think that the decline in revenue can be turned around or do you think it will magically take care of itself?

    "In my experience, if you can't say what you mean, you can never mean what you say. The details are everything." ~ Minister Durano

  • Gehenna.3625Gehenna.3625 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 15, 2020

    @maddoctor.2738 said:

    @Gehenna.3625 said:
    The other thing with expansions is that when an expansion doesn't work out well, people will give it another shot often with the next expansion. That's what PoF did and it worked a lot better. In fact PoF was a success and turned the trend around and after the two sales quarters of having a new expansion out, the revenue after was higher than before the release until Q4 of 2018. That's when it sunk back to the pre-PoF levels and has now gone down to the lowest quarter revenue in GW2 history.

    Remember that the game went free to play when HOT was released, so the company lost a lot of revenue there. The game WAS selling before going free to play. Also remember that during the time of POF, HOT was also selling. In fact after POF was released Arenanet was earning money from TWO expansions at a time, inflating the POF numbers. In Q4 2019 HOT went free with the purchase of POF and we see the results. I wonder how the POF numbers would look like if HOT was free from the start.

    The base game became free to play but that was replaced by HoT sales in essence. The original production costs of the base game would've been paid off already in the first months of the game. The point of an expansion is to add enough content for players to come back and spend some more money. The older a game gets, the fewer new players you will get as it is. The key is not in the price of items but rather getting people to spend more or again.

    People blame the direction, the saga, the templates, the balance or anything else for the drop in Q4 2019, but from a business standpoint, making an expansion that sells $20 a pop go free, WILL have a noticeable effect on revenue.

    That depends on how well it sells. Haven't they done sales where you get HoT free with PoF? Again, the point is that at some point the cost of making it has been earned back already and then you need to give people reasons to spend more cash. That's mostly gem store sales. But for sales to work there, people need to be playing. That's what sales opportunities are. There are no sales opportunities when the player doesn't play anymore and doesn't see the gem store sales.

    At some point HoT sales went down and then it settles at a low point somewhere for people who came back from way back when or are new to the game. But those numbers will be small by comparison. At some point they drop to a threshold where it becomes more profitable to give it free with another purchase, like getting it free with PoF. Let's say that in a give period they sold 500 copies of HoT and 1000 copies of PoF. That's 1500 total. Then they put them together for one price as a sale and they sell 2000 copies. That's 500 more without having any extra cost. So they didn't lose anything but they did gain. And of course these are fictional numbers but it could be that they would know that a permanent change in price nets them less so they do it with limited time sales because those also push people to buy something.

    In short, there's a lot more to it than you suggest and making certain things free can actually gain them revenue rather than being a loss.

    "In my experience, if you can't say what you mean, you can never mean what you say. The details are everything." ~ Minister Durano

  • Can we just stop the general us vs them attitudes. I think everyone agrees the raids only post hot releases hurt the game. It is pretty obvious the lack of difficult content this past 6 months has done similar damage. And like many posters have pointed out anet has the metrics, so you can infer what they say by their current actions.
    This release had noticable increase in difficulty, whispers is about as difficult as easy raid boss. They also improved the difficulty of drakkar. Then we have Andrews post, which is mostly about difficult content being developed in the future. Clearly they recognize that reckless ignoring this community had consequences.
    2020 hopefully will be a mending year for anet, they already are making commitments to fix spvp with the massive balance change NOT targeted at casuals. Casuals have always been the scape goat for not doing skills splits, because they get confused that their skills do different things in pvp than pve. Wvw is getting changes to the mount that was added into the mode against their wishes.
    Ultimately hopefully anet builds all communities, because putting everything in one basket has proven not to work.

  • Zaklex.6308Zaklex.6308 Member ✭✭✭✭

    If anyone wants to be bothered, here's the average exchange rate between USD and the Korean Won for the corresponding quarters: Q4 2018 it was approximately 1,130 and for Q4 2019 it was approximately 1,180. Convert then do the comparison, it'll show a truer picture of revenue quarter to quarter.

    Yes...no...maybe...what do you want, can't you see I'm busy saving the world...AGAIN!

  • Astralporing.1957Astralporing.1957 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Substance E.4852 said:

    @Thenme.6491 said:
    it's just one quarter I would be concerned only if it keeps going in the same direction next quarter. I mean look at the lineage history their decline is way bigger and a quarter later they had huge revenue

    Yes but Anet needs to actually do something to trigger that uptick

    Shelving all instanced content other than Strikes, delivering dull metas like Drakkar, and dragging their feet with WvW/PvP expacs doesn't bring people back nor give prospective new players a reason to invest their time in a game that only seems to be downsizing itself.

    FTFY

    The whole point of a social game is to play with the people you want to play with, not be forced to play with the people you don't.

  • Virdo.1540Virdo.1540 Member ✭✭✭✭

    the mobile game income... what a sad world

  • maddoctor.2738maddoctor.2738 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Gehenna.3625 said:
    The base game became free to play but that was replaced by HoT sales in essence.

    Did it? Keep in mind that after the game went free to play, someone didn't have to pay to try it. And if the game captivate a player then they wouldn't buy the expansion. In essence by going free to play the game lost the ability of "pay first, see if you like it after". The "core audience" should've bought the expansion, which is reflected by the very good release sales. But what about new players?

    In short, there's a lot more to it than you suggest and making certain things free can actually gain them revenue rather than being a loss.

    This is true, but it depends on what's going free to grab the player's attention, so they become a paid customer and then buy the paid part. I believe in both cases (core going free and hot going free) it didn't help.

  • Virdo.1540Virdo.1540 Member ✭✭✭✭

    Please anet, LET US PAY MONEY

  • JustTrogdor.7892JustTrogdor.7892 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 16, 2020

    I have not really played since August 2019, just before the over hyped presentation. I log in time to time to unlock episodes and my only AP since August was 1 point from getting a mail about Lunar New Year and clicking the attached item which was a portal and awarded 1 AP for doing so. I never cared for the story and skipped as much of it as I could to play the parts I wanted to. But the problem I see is Anet keeps trying to reinvent things instead of improving on the "groundwork" they already developed.

    Dungeons, left behind when I think a lot of players would play them more if they were tweaked a bit and added a chance at a really rare reward. Guilds and guild missions, again left behind. Bounties, again seems to be left behind. Most of the masteries players gained from HoT have little to no value in the game post HoT. Now the next big thing is strike missions that I'm willing to bet will be abandoned before the year is over. It seems like a lot of "groundwork" often gets abandoned after a while and I can't blame people for being skeptical.

    Overall I think Anet needs to stop trying to reinvent the MMO wheel and focus on making fun, rewarding, replayable content based on what they have already developed. Instead it seems they keep reaching and trying to convince players that their next "innovation" is going to be the next best thing in MMOs. Improve on the systems in place and give a reason for players to replay it instead of constantly trying to invent new "groundwork" that seems more often than not abandoned at some point.

    I don't think it is bad that Anet tries to work outside the typical MMO box with GW2. I just think at times they seem to be throwing darts and hoping things stick long enough for the next "hyped" feature that will come and go..

    As for people that mention an optional sub... My question is what does that optional sub give? If it is only gems a month, well you can already buy that every month if you want to. So an optional sub would have to offer something more but what? It can't be for access to the stories/sagas or people will get really mad at this point since Anet has already set a standard for that. Unlimited material storage like ESO Plus has? Or what? What could an optional sub offer that isn't already available via the gem store to convince players to subscribe instead of just buying on demand? My point is if Anet offered an optional subscription they would have to in some way handicap those that do no subscribe to make it worth it for subscribers. At this point the way GW2 has been marketed and developed it would not go over well.

  • @Zaklex.6308 said:
    If anyone wants to be bothered, here's the average exchange rate between USD and the Korean Won for the corresponding quarters: Q4 2018 it was approximately 1,130 and for Q4 2019 it was approximately 1,180. Convert then do the comparison, it'll show a truer picture of revenue quarter to quarter.

    This is a difference of 0.96%

    Not sure what you try to say here. The income for NC-Soft is always in Wong compared to Wong. USD has nothing to do with it.

  • Cyninja.2954Cyninja.2954 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Kurrilino.2706 said:

    @Zaklex.6308 said:
    If anyone wants to be bothered, here's the average exchange rate between USD and the Korean Won for the corresponding quarters: Q4 2018 it was approximately 1,130 and for Q4 2019 it was approximately 1,180. Convert then do the comparison, it'll show a truer picture of revenue quarter to quarter.

    This is a difference of 0.96%

    Not sure what you try to say here. The income for NC-Soft is always in Wong compared to Wong. USD has nothing to do with it.

    The revenue generate in the US gets converted into Wong for those charts (same as any other foreign currency). It might not be a huge difference when the exchange rate is stable, but it absolutely is of consequence for business working internationally, especially if a company does not hold permanent foreign currency reserves.

  • @Cyninja.2954 said:

    @Kurrilino.2706 said:

    @Zaklex.6308 said:
    If anyone wants to be bothered, here's the average exchange rate between USD and the Korean Won for the corresponding quarters: Q4 2018 it was approximately 1,130 and for Q4 2019 it was approximately 1,180. Convert then do the comparison, it'll show a truer picture of revenue quarter to quarter.

    This is a difference of 0.96%

    Not sure what you try to say here. The income for NC-Soft is always in Wong compared to Wong. USD has nothing to do with it.

    The revenue generate in the US gets converted into Wong for those charts (same as any other foreign currency). It might not be a huge difference when the exchange rate is stable, but it absolutely is of consequence for business working internationally, especially if a company does not hold permanent foreign currency reserves.

    I understand that very well. But all this has nothing to do with the quarter numbers dropped 25% or whatever the exact number is.

  • Cyninja.2954Cyninja.2954 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Kurrilino.2706 said:

    @Cyninja.2954 said:

    @Kurrilino.2706 said:

    @Zaklex.6308 said:
    If anyone wants to be bothered, here's the average exchange rate between USD and the Korean Won for the corresponding quarters: Q4 2018 it was approximately 1,130 and for Q4 2019 it was approximately 1,180. Convert then do the comparison, it'll show a truer picture of revenue quarter to quarter.

    This is a difference of 0.96%

    Not sure what you try to say here. The income for NC-Soft is always in Wong compared to Wong. USD has nothing to do with it.

    The revenue generate in the US gets converted into Wong for those charts (same as any other foreign currency). It might not be a huge difference when the exchange rate is stable, but it absolutely is of consequence for business working internationally, especially if a company does not hold permanent foreign currency reserves.

    I understand that very well. But all this has nothing to do with the quarter numbers dropped 25% or whatever the exact number is.

    No, but that was not said. What was said was that there might be some deviation due to exchange rate differences, not that this would account for the entire 25% drop.

  • Ehy, that is suprising. If they insert broken things in the game that ruin the fun for many players and these player quit, this is hurting sales? Who in a clear mind would expect this?

  • Fenella.2634Fenella.2634 Member ✭✭✭

    Now that I think about it, I think I completely stopped spending any money on the game when the templates were implemented. Not even gold to gem since then.
    They are so ridiculously expensive and inconvenient that it somehow made me lose interest in the entire gem store.

    What a shame. This is a great game and I want it to perform well.

  • Gehenna.3625Gehenna.3625 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @maddoctor.2738 said:

    @Gehenna.3625 said:
    The base game became free to play but that was replaced by HoT sales in essence.

    Did it? Keep in mind that after the game went free to play, someone didn't have to pay to try it. And if the game captivate a player then they wouldn't buy the expansion. In essence by going free to play the game lost the ability of "pay first, see if you like it after". The "core audience" should've bought the expansion, which is reflected by the very good release sales. But what about new players?

    The core game became free with HoT if you remember. Here's what Mike O'Brien said about that https://www.pcgamer.com/guild-wars-2-core-game-is-now-free/ I think you'll find that it supports my idea. And yes it was of course to pull new players in as well, but then with the hopes of them buying HoT. There is a point when a game is a few years old where having to buy the game at full price becomes a barrier. ArenaNet saw this too. Also they wanted to sell their new expansion but then new people would have to buy both. A lot of people wouldn't go for that. So yes, the idea was that expansion sales were replacing normal box sales. And this would only be done if that was more beneficial than keeping the core game at a cost for players.

    In short, there's a lot more to it than you suggest and making certain things free can actually gain them revenue rather than being a loss.

    This is true, but it depends on what's going free to grab the player's attention, so they become a paid customer and then buy the paid part. I believe in both cases (core going free and hot going free) it didn't help.

    Sure, but the core game is a pre-requisite for the expansions. So it made sense they did that, also because the core game was old and already was paid for. The expansions are new investments that have to be earned back.

    "In my experience, if you can't say what you mean, you can never mean what you say. The details are everything." ~ Minister Durano

  • Solvar.7953Solvar.7953 Member ✭✭✭

    @Blaeys.3102 said:

    They need to focus on their core differentiators - open world, story and WvW. Anything that doesn't feed into those game modes needs to be put on hold indefinitely - including sPvP, raids, strike missions, etc. Focus all of those resources in the same area and make it as good as it can possibly be. Stop trying to compete for raiders from WoW or pvpers from LoL and make the parts of the game that offer something unique better and more fun.


    I agree with pretty much everything you said. Instead of being average in a much of different areas, they should aim to be very good in a few.
    This may create some short term pain (as the audience alienate moves away). But ideally, you make that up with new players who really want an excellent PvE or WvW experience. The problem right now, as what does GW2 offer that some other game doesn't do better? Maybe if someone is interested in all the different game modes, GW2 offers that where as other games don't, but I doubt there are many players who actually do all the game modes. And if one was really good, they'd probably still come back for that.
    Personally, PvE is what I play - I only go into WvW or PvP for a daily now and again (and one could argue that for WvW that is a bad thing, as I may be using a space on a busy map waiting for a veteran creature to show up).
    The other issue is that they need to offer something in the gemstore to those who are not into cosmetics. Others on this thread have mentioned they fall into that category, as do I. I've pretty much bought all the convenience items (extra bank space, unlimited gathering tools, a few extra character slots, unlimited salvaging, shared slots). At this point, there is nothing in the gemstore of any interest to me. Periodically (usually when on sale), I'll buy some BL keys and use a few each time a new chest shows up - mostly because I enjoy the game and I want to give Anet some money. But I'd probably spend more if there was something useful to spend it on.

  • Zok.4956Zok.4956 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 17, 2020

    @Solvar.7953 said:

    @Blaeys.3102 said:

    They need to focus on their core differentiators - open world, story and WvW. Anything that doesn't feed into those game modes needs to be put on hold indefinitely - including sPvP, raids, strike missions, etc. Focus all of those resources in the same area and make it as good as it can possibly be. Stop trying to compete for raiders from WoW or pvpers from LoL and make the parts of the game that offer something unique better and more fun.


    I agree with pretty much everything you said. Instead of being average in a much of different areas, they should aim to be very good in a few.
    This may create some short term pain (as the audience alienate moves away). But ideally, you make that up with new players who really want an excellent PvE or WvW experience.

    That will create a lot of friction from unhappy customers/players. For example: I too would be very unhappy if I would be (more) alienated by the game.

    Amazon did this revently (with a game that will be released in a few months) and it created a lot of angry PvP-players of the public-beta, after the studio announced, that they change the openworld-PvP to be an "opt-in" feature and want to focus more on PvE. Its possible with a game that is not yet released, but doing this after release would create a much bigger kitten-storm.

    The easy way out (for the studio) would be, to make a new game that focusses only on a few things and let the old game mostly stay as it is (doing only so much that most players do not feel that the game is already in maintenance mode), so players stay until the new game is ready. And I believe this is what Anet probably already has tried (or is still trying, I don't know).

    A dev that worked on GW1 and GW2, but left Anet last year to found a new game studio, wrote somewhere, that he learned the lesson, that it was not a good design choice to change the skill system from gw1 into that of gw2 and that it also was not a good idea, to make so many game modes in the game, because the company can not support all of them in the same way.

    https://www.gw2gh.com/ - A GW2-Guild-Hall.
    Register and check your guild leaderboard to see who is the best in your guild and who finished achievements first.

  • Blaeys.3102Blaeys.3102 Member ✭✭✭

    @Zok.4956 said:

    @Solvar.7953 said:

    @Blaeys.3102 said:

    They need to focus on their core differentiators - open world, story and WvW. Anything that doesn't feed into those game modes needs to be put on hold indefinitely - including sPvP, raids, strike missions, etc. Focus all of those resources in the same area and make it as good as it can possibly be. Stop trying to compete for raiders from WoW or pvpers from LoL and make the parts of the game that offer something unique better and more fun.


    I agree with pretty much everything you said. Instead of being average in a much of different areas, they should aim to be very good in a few.
    This may create some short term pain (as the audience alienate moves away). But ideally, you make that up with new players who really want an excellent PvE or WvW experience.

    That will create a lot of friction from unhappy customers/players. For example: I too would be very unhappy if I would be (more) alienated by the game.

    Amazon did this revently (with a game that will be released in a few months) and it created a lot of angry PvP-players of the public-beta, after the studio announced, that they change the openworld-PvP to be an "opt-in" feature and want to focus more on PvE. Its possible with a game that is not yet released, but doing this after release would create a much bigger kitten-storm.

    The easy way out (for the studio) would be, to make a new game that focusses only on a few things and let the old game mostly stay as it is (doing only so much that most players do not feel that the game is already in maintenance mode), so players stay until the new game is ready. And I believe this is what Anet probably already has tried (or is still trying, I don't know).

    A dev that worked on GW1 and GW2, but left Anet last year to found a new game studio, wrote somewhere, that he learned the lesson, that it was not a good design choice to change the skill system from gw1 into that of gw2 and that it also was not a good idea, to make so many game modes in the game, because the company can not support all of them in the same way.

    I agree it would cause some friction and loss of a few players, but it still needs to happen for the long term health of the game. They tried to be all things to all players and didn't have the resources to sustain that kind of growth. When that happens, a company can either struggle forward refusing to learn from the mistake (and eventually fail), or they can regroup and focus their resources on those things that set them apart from the competition.

    Anet/Guild Wars 2 created something unique in the industry. They created the best (imo) open world experiences (both PVE and WVW) in the industry - with a fun story system to support it. It wasn't until they started trying to bring in other kinds of players that things went south (they watered the game down).

    A refocus on open world/wvw is what will keep people playing - and even bring in new players if they do it right and promote intelligently (another area they haven't been great at). Yes, they would lose a few players short term, but I believe it would be good for the long term health of the game. Get back to the basics and become the best in the world at those basics.

  • Zok.4956Zok.4956 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 17, 2020

    @Blaeys.3102 said:
    When that happens, a company can either struggle forward refusing to learn from the mistake (and eventually fail), or they can regroup and focus their resources on those things that set them apart from the competition.

    Anet/Guild Wars 2 created something unique in the industry. They created the best (imo) open world experiences (both PVE and WVW) in the industry - with a fun story system to support it. It wasn't until they started trying to bring in other kinds of players that things went south (they watered the game down).

    Anet was always hits and misses. But I have not much hope anymore, that Anet as a company is able to learn from their mistakes and from their inconsistencies in the game. Instead of learning from mistakes and improving things they made wrong, they just abandon things and try to reinvent the wheel again and again. Its like they create the groundwork for something, use this one or two times and then abandon it and create the next groundwork for something completely different as a kind of overcompensation. It feels like they have no vision for the game anymore for quite some time now.

    Around a year ago (after the layoffs) they announced that their focus and all their ressources are now put into GW2. And last year october, they announced the Saga in a big event. What they delivered with the Saga until now does not feel like they have learned from their mistakes and it definitley does not feel like they have put all their ressources into the Saga, yet. It will be interesting, what exactely they announce at PAX.

    https://www.gw2gh.com/ - A GW2-Guild-Hall.
    Register and check your guild leaderboard to see who is the best in your guild and who finished achievements first.

  • maddoctor.2738maddoctor.2738 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Gehenna.3625 said:
    And yes it was of course to pull new players in as well, but then with the hopes of them buying HoT.

    Of course. What I'm saying is that it didn't work and the conversion rate for Guild Wars 2 was too low. I don't have it now but I remember even NCSoft mentioning that same fact, conversion rate for GW2 being lower than expected. But that's in the past, I mentioned the game going free to put the price of the game into the equation of why the revenue was lower during HOT, not the only reason of course, but I think it did play an important part in it.

    I think the start of the game needs a big revamp to make it a better "expansion seller" and create more conversions. Why Anet never focused on that is anyone's guess, instead of squeezing their current players, get new ones. But that's probably a discussion for another thread.

  • Gehenna.3625Gehenna.3625 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @maddoctor.2738 said:

    @Gehenna.3625 said:
    And yes it was of course to pull new players in as well, but then with the hopes of them buying HoT.

    Of course. What I'm saying is that it didn't work and the conversion rate for Guild Wars 2 was too low. I don't have it now but I remember even NCSoft mentioning that same fact, conversion rate for GW2 being lower than expected. But that's in the past, I mentioned the game going free to put the price of the game into the equation of why the revenue was lower during HOT, not the only reason of course, but I think it did play an important part in it.

    I don't know and we can't tell from the numbers so I'll remain unconvinced but still open to evidence of course. The revenue continued to go down after HoT but the problem was the raise in difficulty which was an odd choice, like some others, for a game that is so casual oriented.

    I think the start of the game needs a big revamp to make it a better "expansion seller" and create more conversions. Why Anet never focused on that is anyone's guess, instead of squeezing their current players, get new ones. But that's probably a discussion for another thread.

    Well I get what you're saying but the core game has been abandonded as such because it's free and investing into it makes little sense. I think the game needs an overhaul in general, mostly the whole skill/trait/gear system. It's too much of a mess, particularly for casual players, and it's too complex for what this game is in the end. It's like making it harder than necessary cause you can. But my feeling is that the character building with weapon choices, specs, traits, etc. is something that a lot of people really don't get into because it forces them to use weapons they don't like (so they don't follow that) and because the trait and skill system is actually too complex. So people get lost and stop caring. That needs an overhaul.

    And see when they released PoF it did work because the open world was more casual oriented and, well, everybody likes mounts, casual or not. Revenue went up to pre-HoT levels for 3 whole quarters after the PoF release spike and then it started going down again because LS chapters added too little and too much time was between them. We all know now that this was because they put most of their resources on other projects. Then NcSoft cut that short and cut their staff by over a third. But for me it's clear that they lost momentum by not announcing and starting on a new expansion.

    Personally I feel that it's obvious that this game caters mostly to casual players and yet they make a lot of decisions that go against that. Adding raids I could understand initially cause people asked and they tried but they admitted themselves it attracts very few players. That's why PoF was more of a success and they could've built on that.

    They didn't.

    I guess what I'm saying is that PoF brought them momentum and they took it for granted. Now their revenue suffers for it. In the end it's hard to say what exactly will or won't work, but if revenue stays down, we know that what they are currently doing doesn't work...unless it's good enough for them and they accept the revenue cut and just keep the cost low at the same time. I kinda hope that's not the cause though.

    "In my experience, if you can't say what you mean, you can never mean what you say. The details are everything." ~ Minister Durano

  • Solvar.7953Solvar.7953 Member ✭✭✭

    I sometimes get the feeling that Anet keeps pushing certain things (strike missions as introductions to raids, so hopefully more people will raid) because they don't really want to admit that the resources spent on raids never paid off. They don't seem to have a problem dropping some ideas, but others they really keep sticking with.
    Ideally, Anet should have numbers on how many players play want, and for how long. Even better, they should know how much those different segments spend on gems. I could imagine that there are certain segments which may have a decent population, but the gemstore (mostly cosmetics) does not appeal to them. It would not make financial sense to focus on those players.
    Based on past history, I would not expect them to remove any content. But it is probably reasonable for them to say 'no further development will happen in this area' - at least players know not to keep waiting for something, and they can keep playing it if they want. But that should let Anet focus on areas that will attract new players or existing players spending money.

  • Zok.4956Zok.4956 Member ✭✭✭

    @Solvar.7953 said:
    I sometimes get the feeling that Anet keeps pushing certain things (strike missions as introductions to raids, so hopefully more people will raid) because they don't really want to admit that the resources spent on raids never paid off. They don't seem to have a problem dropping some ideas, but others they really keep sticking with.

    I Agree. It feels, like there are lots of different ideas and personal preferences (from different devs/teams), that sometimes are counterproductive and there is no general vision for the game and there is no leadership, that takes care that all devs are rowing in the same direction.

    There was a guild chat, in which a dev presented the template-system and explained, how difficult it was, because there were so many internal constraints, variations and difficulties implementing it without losing gear during switching.

    During the stream I was thinking "Why is no one talking about their thoughts why they implemented the UI like it is, so that users have the best UI-experience with this?"

    Just to be clear: It was not the fault of that dev. Most software developers are not UX and usability experts, thats why both professions should work together in a team. But it seems a "department or team leader" or something like that, I do not not know the internal structure of Anet, has forgotten to also assign an UX and usability expert to the template-system-task. Or maybe there is no UX and usability expert left at Anet. Which would also be bad.

    This is just one example.

    https://www.gw2gh.com/ - A GW2-Guild-Hall.
    Register and check your guild leaderboard to see who is the best in your guild and who finished achievements first.

  • titje.2745titje.2745 Member ✭✭✭

    @Bass de .1895 said:
    Anet needs and better PR department. Players would prbably be more willing to open up their wallet if they felt confident that the game wasn't being put into maintenance mode. With all the drama that happened in 2019 and their historical ability over hype and under deliver many players are on the fence with a "I'll believe it when I see it and then maybe I will spend money" attitude.

    i also spend money on guildwars 2 before. for upgrades etc. but no more because, they are greedy. before you crafted an item and sold it for gold. but prices of those items decreased while gems from gold prices increased. so i am forced to spend real money. only the veterans and rich ppl can buy everything with gold. a game isn’t fun for me if i always
    have to spend cash. skins are too expensive (because the gems from gold price) nice skins are put behind rng this is the greed i mentioned. they don’t accept 10 euro for a skin. they want gamble addicted ppl to spend hundreds cash for a skin. i sometimes read on forum someone spend 50+ euro on keys and only junk loot. also someone got 100 keys for christmas. only got 7 times bonus slot. = 93 keys wasted. price a key is 1,25 euro. this way you know you are only good for your cash. i am not greedy irl (nowhere) and so i hate when ppl are greedy. ingame everything is so hard to obtain gold etc and forced to spend cash. the times when i spender money on guildwars 2 where times that i got precursor every 4 months. i was lucky and lucky ppl are happy and good mood so spend cash because like the game. but now when i play i feel they want my cash because everything i do ingame i het junk loot. killing bosses for a infusion is wasting time. will never drop. i don’t play that often anymore because of the bad rng. i am a loot goblin and if my rng is bad i quit. i quit wow in 2015 because i didn’t get a mount drop for 6 months. but i paid for game time. no mount is no money.
    guildwars 2 no easy gold or nice items is no money. for bl chests i NEVER get a bonus slot. greed.
    i spend some money on call of duty modern warfare points. there i am sure what i get. nothing with gamble.

  • Gehenna.3625Gehenna.3625 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Solvar.7953 said:
    I sometimes get the feeling that Anet keeps pushing certain things (strike missions as introductions to raids, so hopefully more people will raid) because they don't really want to admit that the resources spent on raids never paid off. They don't seem to have a problem dropping some ideas, but others they really keep sticking with.

    Actually there's a sticky on this forum where Andrew Gray specifically states that raiding only attracts a small group of people. So they admitted it right there.

    What I think though is that they're trying to fix it in a way that won't work. My feeling is that most people who play this game are casual oriented and the game does a few things wrong at the core for that sort of audience. As I mentioned in other threads I think the first things they need to resolve is to make the character build system a lot more transparent, straightforward and understandable and they have to do something about weapons being such an important part of your performance even though for many players it's also a visual aspect so they effectively put fashion wars at odds with performance of your character. Without doing something about things like that first, you simply won't get a lot more people to do structured group content in general unless it's easy.

    The question is if they are willing/able to make fundamental chances to this because it's a big thing to do and it will affect combat in general and therefore also the combat encounters. If only they were doing another expansion where this could be done... ah well, a guy can dream right?

    "In my experience, if you can't say what you mean, you can never mean what you say. The details are everything." ~ Minister Durano

  • What a lot of people seem to miss is that it wasn't just a bad quarter, it was a BAD YEAR. There was also a 25% decrease in revenue in 2019 compared to both 2017 and 2018.

  • DonArkanio.6419DonArkanio.6419 Member ✭✭✭✭

    Reworking Raids into Strike Missions, so that it's a whole HoT and PoF sub-plot story would be one of the best things they could do for Raids. Seriously.

    Raids are very poorly implemented. Instead of creating a bridge between Open World and Raids - remake Raids into Strike Missions.
    Of course, it's too late for this now, and I don't believe that it could ever happen. But I think it's a pretty good idea someone posted here.

  • Blaeys.3102Blaeys.3102 Member ✭✭✭

    @DutchRiders.2871 said:

    @Blaeys.3102 said:
    I would be interested in seeing the number of concurrent players, similar to how Steam measures for games on that platform.

    I still enjoy GW2 a lot - and try to buy gems on a semi regular basis, but it is very easy to see (imo) why the game is suffering.

    • Lack of direction. This is the single biggest one - and probably feeds into the other points here. Marketing 101 teaches that, even if you cant be the top company overall, you define your niche and OWN it - a category that is all your own and that you can take a leadership role in. For GW2, that is large scale open world content (both PVE with living world and pvp with WVW) and story. While dungeons and sPvP were a thing at launch, it was obvious that the core of the game was about large scale populations (100+) coming together to enjoy a fantasy world. Across the years, they have watered that approach down to the point where nothing they do really stands out from the competition.

    • Lost connection with players. Around the time HOT came out, we saw a shift away from current players and toward prospective players. The expansion itself, raids, the inclusion of more focused trinity (tank, heal, dps) roles - these took center stage, while - at the same time - more community focused content (such as guild missions) were left to the wayside. It didn't matter that they didn't have the resources to keep the new audiences happy (the case with raids) - all that mattered was that they get them into the game. The result today is a population with needs/expectations all over the spectrum - and a company that will never be able to appeal to them all.

    • Lack of follow through. Historically, Anet has been an ideas company. The problem has always been they never seem to want to follow up on those innovations. Guild missions is the single biggest example of this - a great idea that they just let die on the side of the road as they reached for the next "innovation" - only to likely abandon it months later as well. World changing dynamic events, guild missions, mini-games (that one barely made it out the beta weekends), even the story about the asura and pet moa on the website - all of these things (which fit well with their original model) died somewhere after inception.

    The earning numbers are discouraging - and I wouldn't be surprised in the least to see another - smaller - round of layoffs as a result.

    That said, I think they can still right the ship and put it back on the right course, but it's going to require some pretty painful amputations.

    They need to focus on their core differentiators - open world, story and WvW. Anything that doesn't feed into those game modes needs to be put on hold indefinitely - including sPvP, raids, strike missions, etc. Focus all of those resources in the same area and make it as good as it can possibly be. Stop trying to compete for raiders from WoW or pvpers from LoL and make the parts of the game that offer something unique better and more fun.

    Keep in mind that I am not talking about those areas as they are now - but more in line with the vision they had when they launched. That means better integration of difficulty content into those areas.

    • Use guild event triggers/missions to inject eye-bleeding (optional) difficulty into open world. Imagine a Shadow Behemoth with actual difficult mechanics led by guilds offering at least a baseline of coordination (encouraged by guild mission rewards).
    • Replace raids and strike missions with hard (very hard single, 5 man and 10 man) mode versions of the story chapters from living world (and make these more difficult versions repeatable).
    • Add new obstacles and even maps (there is no reason we have to be limited to 3 BLs+EBG) to WvW based on actual strategic examples from history. Maybe a map dedicated to naval combat - or a map where all mounts and gliding everywhere is enabled (with map features designed around them) - or, maybe, airship combat. Map scenarios that involve escorting strategic resources, etc. With more dedicated resources, the sky would be the limit (possibly literally) - and more map variety would make the game mode much more fun for everyone.

    The game isn't dead, but it is definitely struggling. It is time to get back to the basics - focus on what makes the game unique in the market.

    They have been hard focussing on open world for a long time. Have you ever considered that open world and story content are free and bad ?

    We get lane events cause maps cannot handle alot of players together, complicated maps are already a huge struggle on mid budget devices.

    Gw2 is done for. Check the ffxiv update notes, now realise they get it multiple times a year. Mmo players are waiting for new world and currently playing FF14. Gw2 marketed itself against wow without ever realizing their own strengths. Here we are in 2020 where they still have not figured it out but in the mean time they killed fractals, dungeons, raid communities, server identities with the merges, wvw, boss and meta event communities, guild missions and pvp.

    Guess what those people are disappointed and wont come back. Wanna attract new customers ? Gl with that since any content creator and community will tell you gw2 is a casual fiesta without any progression or competition.

    Even worse no modern gamer will accept the horrible and predatory gemstore.

    The game definitely isn't dead yet. I saw 20+ people last night for guild missions, even though we have done them every week since they came out - and I consistently see 20-40 people for our wvw nights. Even our guild open world PVE night brings in a decent sized crowd. Im not saying the content has us enthralled - even though we usually manage to find something we enjoy doing together. The community/other guildees keep up logging on - but that does keep us playing, and I see no sign of that slowing down.

    We just need to see Anet start supporting those communities again. Forget instanced raids/spvp/etc and focus on the things that bring a community together in large groups and guild-focused activity. That set GW2 apart at launch. They made a huge mistake when they started watering that down - they basically lost their competitive identity.

    The important things to realize is that there still isn't another MMO that gets the open world model right - so GW2 still has the chance to regain that title. They just need to refocus and enhance those areas - which, given their current resource situation, means they will have to make some pretty drastic cuts in other areas of the game (those areas where their competition DOES outshine them).

  • @arkinia.6952 said:
    Offer a subscription as an option.

    We already have that. It's called Gem's.
    You can buy monthly if you desire so.

    If we try to be honest, it's sure to say there are not many people left who are willing to spend money on GW2.
    Having subscription won't change that.

    Player all around the world asked for content. A-Net delivered excuses of contend and also live the illusion that archivement is content.
    The players don't see it that way. They want quality like new maps with new content and skills. What they get is always the same map, painted a different color.
    Meta event in the middle and repeatable hearts.

    If someone asks me, we need a map and skill bundle per season and everything released at the start not by 20 minutes bits.
    Those mapbundles would include a starter map to get used to the climate or theme of the bundle or just have fun.
    People don't like to have all maps full out warzones like they voiced to A-Net after PoF.

    As long as A-Net ignores what people want we better get used to quarters like that.

  • Healix.5819Healix.5819 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Stormscar.5489 said:
    What a lot of people seem to miss is that it wasn't just a bad quarter, it was a BAD YEAR. There was also a 25% decrease in revenue in 2019 compared to both 2017 and 2018.

    2019 was normal and earned slightly more than the year leading up to PoF. It just looks bad because it was the first year since 2015 that wasn't influenced by an expansion. 2020 is what's going to be bad at the current rate.

  • @Blaeys.3102 said:

    @DutchRiders.2871 said:

    @Blaeys.3102 said:
    I would be interested in seeing the number of concurrent players, similar to how Steam measures for games on that platform.

    I still enjoy GW2 a lot - and try to buy gems on a semi regular basis, but it is very easy to see (imo) why the game is suffering.

    • Lack of direction. This is the single biggest one - and probably feeds into the other points here. Marketing 101 teaches that, even if you cant be the top company overall, you define your niche and OWN it - a category that is all your own and that you can take a leadership role in. For GW2, that is large scale open world content (both PVE with living world and pvp with WVW) and story. While dungeons and sPvP were a thing at launch, it was obvious that the core of the game was about large scale populations (100+) coming together to enjoy a fantasy world. Across the years, they have watered that approach down to the point where nothing they do really stands out from the competition.

    • Lost connection with players. Around the time HOT came out, we saw a shift away from current players and toward prospective players. The expansion itself, raids, the inclusion of more focused trinity (tank, heal, dps) roles - these took center stage, while - at the same time - more community focused content (such as guild missions) were left to the wayside. It didn't matter that they didn't have the resources to keep the new audiences happy (the case with raids) - all that mattered was that they get them into the game. The result today is a population with needs/expectations all over the spectrum - and a company that will never be able to appeal to them all.

    • Lack of follow through. Historically, Anet has been an ideas company. The problem has always been they never seem to want to follow up on those innovations. Guild missions is the single biggest example of this - a great idea that they just let die on the side of the road as they reached for the next "innovation" - only to likely abandon it months later as well. World changing dynamic events, guild missions, mini-games (that one barely made it out the beta weekends), even the story about the asura and pet moa on the website - all of these things (which fit well with their original model) died somewhere after inception.

    The earning numbers are discouraging - and I wouldn't be surprised in the least to see another - smaller - round of layoffs as a result.

    That said, I think they can still right the ship and put it back on the right course, but it's going to require some pretty painful amputations.

    They need to focus on their core differentiators - open world, story and WvW. Anything that doesn't feed into those game modes needs to be put on hold indefinitely - including sPvP, raids, strike missions, etc. Focus all of those resources in the same area and make it as good as it can possibly be. Stop trying to compete for raiders from WoW or pvpers from LoL and make the parts of the game that offer something unique better and more fun.

    Keep in mind that I am not talking about those areas as they are now - but more in line with the vision they had when they launched. That means better integration of difficulty content into those areas.

    • Use guild event triggers/missions to inject eye-bleeding (optional) difficulty into open world. Imagine a Shadow Behemoth with actual difficult mechanics led by guilds offering at least a baseline of coordination (encouraged by guild mission rewards).
    • Replace raids and strike missions with hard (very hard single, 5 man and 10 man) mode versions of the story chapters from living world (and make these more difficult versions repeatable).
    • Add new obstacles and even maps (there is no reason we have to be limited to 3 BLs+EBG) to WvW based on actual strategic examples from history. Maybe a map dedicated to naval combat - or a map where all mounts and gliding everywhere is enabled (with map features designed around them) - or, maybe, airship combat. Map scenarios that involve escorting strategic resources, etc. With more dedicated resources, the sky would be the limit (possibly literally) - and more map variety would make the game mode much more fun for everyone.

    The game isn't dead, but it is definitely struggling. It is time to get back to the basics - focus on what makes the game unique in the market.

    They have been hard focussing on open world for a long time. Have you ever considered that open world and story content are free and bad ?

    We get lane events cause maps cannot handle alot of players together, complicated maps are already a huge struggle on mid budget devices.

    Gw2 is done for. Check the ffxiv update notes, now realise they get it multiple times a year. Mmo players are waiting for new world and currently playing FF14. Gw2 marketed itself against wow without ever realizing their own strengths. Here we are in 2020 where they still have not figured it out but in the mean time they killed fractals, dungeons, raid communities, server identities with the merges, wvw, boss and meta event communities, guild missions and pvp.

    Guess what those people are disappointed and wont come back. Wanna attract new customers ? Gl with that since any content creator and community will tell you gw2 is a casual fiesta without any progression or competition.

    Even worse no modern gamer will accept the horrible and predatory gemstore.

    The game definitely isn't dead yet. I saw 20+ people last night for guild missions, even though we have done them every week since they came out - and I consistently see 20-40 people for our wvw nights. Even our guild open world PVE night brings in a decent sized crowd. Im not saying the content has us enthralled - even though we usually manage to find something we enjoy doing together. The community/other guildees keep up logging on - but that does keep us playing, and I see no sign of that slowing down.

    We just need to see Anet start supporting those communities again. Forget instanced raids/spvp/etc and focus on the things that bring a community together in large groups and guild-focused activity. That set GW2 apart at launch. They made a huge mistake when they started watering that down - they basically lost their competitive identity.

    The important things to realize is that there still isn't another MMO that gets the open world model right - so GW2 still has the chance to regain that title. They just need to refocus and enhance those areas - which, given their current resource situation, means they will have to make some pretty drastic cuts in other areas of the game (those areas where their competition DOES outshine them).

    They have been focussing on open world all the time, if you think they focussed on raids/pvp/etc you are dead wrong. The game is struggling with players as it is and here you are advocating killing off every community that is not yours. Cause an open world / story update every 2 months aint enuff to satisfy your needs.

    How about we turn those tables around for a year? See what happens.

  • zealex.9410zealex.9410 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Blaeys.3102 said:

    @Zok.4956 said:

    @Solvar.7953 said:

    @Blaeys.3102 said:

    They need to focus on their core differentiators - open world, story and WvW. Anything that doesn't feed into those game modes needs to be put on hold indefinitely - including sPvP, raids, strike missions, etc. Focus all of those resources in the same area and make it as good as it can possibly be. Stop trying to compete for raiders from WoW or pvpers from LoL and make the parts of the game that offer something unique better and more fun.


    I agree with pretty much everything you said. Instead of being average in a much of different areas, they should aim to be very good in a few.
    This may create some short term pain (as the audience alienate moves away). But ideally, you make that up with new players who really want an excellent PvE or WvW experience.

    That will create a lot of friction from unhappy customers/players. For example: I too would be very unhappy if I would be (more) alienated by the game.

    Amazon did this revently (with a game that will be released in a few months) and it created a lot of angry PvP-players of the public-beta, after the studio announced, that they change the openworld-PvP to be an "opt-in" feature and want to focus more on PvE. Its possible with a game that is not yet released, but doing this after release would create a much bigger kitten-storm.

    The easy way out (for the studio) would be, to make a new game that focusses only on a few things and let the old game mostly stay as it is (doing only so much that most players do not feel that the game is already in maintenance mode), so players stay until the new game is ready. And I believe this is what Anet probably already has tried (or is still trying, I don't know).

    A dev that worked on GW1 and GW2, but left Anet last year to found a new game studio, wrote somewhere, that he learned the lesson, that it was not a good design choice to change the skill system from gw1 into that of gw2 and that it also was not a good idea, to make so many game modes in the game, because the company can not support all of them in the same way.

    I agree it would cause some friction and loss of a few players, but it still needs to happen for the long term health of the game. They tried to be all things to all players and didn't have the resources to sustain that kind of growth. When that happens, a company can either struggle forward refusing to learn from the mistake (and eventually fail), or they can regroup and focus their resources on those things that set them apart from the competition.

    Anet/Guild Wars 2 created something unique in the industry. They created the best (imo) open world experiences (both PVE and WVW) in the industry - with a fun story system to support it. It wasn't until they started trying to bring in other kinds of players that things went south (they watered the game down).

    A refocus on open world/wvw is what will keep people playing - and even bring in new players if they do it right and promote intelligently (another area they haven't been great at). Yes, they would lose a few players short term, but I believe it would be good for the long term health of the game. Get back to the basics and become the best in the world at those basics.

    Havent anet been focusing exclusively on ow for the last couple episodes? The isntanced pve content that not connected to ow and lw in some way has been nonexistent and pvp and wvw are fairly weak in terms of attention (which is only just now seeing some much deserved love imo).

  • DutchRiders.2871DutchRiders.2871 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 19, 2020

    @Dante.1763 said:

    @DutchRiders.2871 said:

    @Blaeys.3102 said:

    @DutchRiders.2871 said:

    @Blaeys.3102 said:
    I would be interested in seeing the number of concurrent players, similar to how Steam measures for games on that platform.

    I still enjoy GW2 a lot - and try to buy gems on a semi regular basis, but it is very easy to see (imo) why the game is suffering.

    • Lack of direction. This is the single biggest one - and probably feeds into the other points here. Marketing 101 teaches that, even if you cant be the top company overall, you define your niche and OWN it - a category that is all your own and that you can take a leadership role in. For GW2, that is large scale open world content (both PVE with living world and pvp with WVW) and story. While dungeons and sPvP were a thing at launch, it was obvious that the core of the game was about large scale populations (100+) coming together to enjoy a fantasy world. Across the years, they have watered that approach down to the point where nothing they do really stands out from the competition.

    • Lost connection with players. Around the time HOT came out, we saw a shift away from current players and toward prospective players. The expansion itself, raids, the inclusion of more focused trinity (tank, heal, dps) roles - these took center stage, while - at the same time - more community focused content (such as guild missions) were left to the wayside. It didn't matter that they didn't have the resources to keep the new audiences happy (the case with raids) - all that mattered was that they get them into the game. The result today is a population with needs/expectations all over the spectrum - and a company that will never be able to appeal to them all.

    • Lack of follow through. Historically, Anet has been an ideas company. The problem has always been they never seem to want to follow up on those innovations. Guild missions is the single biggest example of this - a great idea that they just let die on the side of the road as they reached for the next "innovation" - only to likely abandon it months later as well. World changing dynamic events, guild missions, mini-games (that one barely made it out the beta weekends), even the story about the asura and pet moa on the website - all of these things (which fit well with their original model) died somewhere after inception.

    The earning numbers are discouraging - and I wouldn't be surprised in the least to see another - smaller - round of layoffs as a result.

    That said, I think they can still right the ship and put it back on the right course, but it's going to require some pretty painful amputations.

    They need to focus on their core differentiators - open world, story and WvW. Anything that doesn't feed into those game modes needs to be put on hold indefinitely - including sPvP, raids, strike missions, etc. Focus all of those resources in the same area and make it as good as it can possibly be. Stop trying to compete for raiders from WoW or pvpers from LoL and make the parts of the game that offer something unique better and more fun.

    Keep in mind that I am not talking about those areas as they are now - but more in line with the vision they had when they launched. That means better integration of difficulty content into those areas.

    • Use guild event triggers/missions to inject eye-bleeding (optional) difficulty into open world. Imagine a Shadow Behemoth with actual difficult mechanics led by guilds offering at least a baseline of coordination (encouraged by guild mission rewards).
    • Replace raids and strike missions with hard (very hard single, 5 man and 10 man) mode versions of the story chapters from living world (and make these more difficult versions repeatable).
    • Add new obstacles and even maps (there is no reason we have to be limited to 3 BLs+EBG) to WvW based on actual strategic examples from history. Maybe a map dedicated to naval combat - or a map where all mounts and gliding everywhere is enabled (with map features designed around them) - or, maybe, airship combat. Map scenarios that involve escorting strategic resources, etc. With more dedicated resources, the sky would be the limit (possibly literally) - and more map variety would make the game mode much more fun for everyone.

    The game isn't dead, but it is definitely struggling. It is time to get back to the basics - focus on what makes the game unique in the market.

    They have been hard focussing on open world for a long time. Have you ever considered that open world and story content are free and bad ?

    We get lane events cause maps cannot handle alot of players together, complicated maps are already a huge struggle on mid budget devices.

    Gw2 is done for. Check the ffxiv update notes, now realise they get it multiple times a year. Mmo players are waiting for new world and currently playing FF14. Gw2 marketed itself against wow without ever realizing their own strengths. Here we are in 2020 where they still have not figured it out but in the mean time they killed fractals, dungeons, raid communities, server identities with the merges, wvw, boss and meta event communities, guild missions and pvp.

    Guess what those people are disappointed and wont come back. Wanna attract new customers ? Gl with that since any content creator and community will tell you gw2 is a casual fiesta without any progression or competition.

    Even worse no modern gamer will accept the horrible and predatory gemstore.

    The game definitely isn't dead yet. I saw 20+ people last night for guild missions, even though we have done them every week since they came out - and I consistently see 20-40 people for our wvw nights. Even our guild open world PVE night brings in a decent sized crowd. Im not saying the content has us enthralled - even though we usually manage to find something we enjoy doing together. The community/other guildees keep up logging on - but that does keep us playing, and I see no sign of that slowing down.

    We just need to see Anet start supporting those communities again. Forget instanced raids/spvp/etc and focus on the things that bring a community together in large groups and guild-focused activity. That set GW2 apart at launch. They made a huge mistake when they started watering that down - they basically lost their competitive identity.

    The important things to realize is that there still isn't another MMO that gets the open world model right - so GW2 still has the chance to regain that title. They just need to refocus and enhance those areas - which, given their current resource situation, means they will have to make some pretty drastic cuts in other areas of the game (those areas where their competition DOES outshine them).

    They have been focussing on open world all the time, if you think they focussed on raids/pvp/etc you are dead wrong. The game is struggling with players as it is and here you are advocating killing off every community that is not yours. Cause an open world / story update every 2 months aint enuff to satisfy your needs.

    How about we turn those tables around for a year? See what happens.

    If they only made content for Openworld/PVP/WVW, instead of Open World/WVW/Raids/Strikes/Fractals/PVP they could focus more people on those three areas of gameplay instead of being spread out so much. If they focused on Raids and other hardcore modes fully im not sure the game would survive. Would ANET lose players by only focusing on the three things they had at launch? Yes, but maybe thats not a bad thing, perhaps it is, but i dunno im not anet.

    He is right though, anet shifted from keeping the playerbase they had to trying to get -ALL- the kinds of playerbases and it spread them out far far to much.

    The game at launch was never meant to be brain dead easy. Hence we have a complicated build system and a strong combat system. Alot of the old developers were pvp focused, I kid you not. The hyper focus on cookie cutter press F open world content is why many are quitting.

    I play FF14, it's a terrible game compared to gw2 but they have good content and an interesting story. FF14 is the king of casual mmos. It's almost criminal that gw2 doesn't utilise any of its strong points.

    We would do perfectly fine with less focus on open world and an audience that's actually interested in the game.

  • Gehenna.3625Gehenna.3625 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @maddoctor.2738 said:

    @Gehenna.3625 said:
    You are right though that the focus of the game has been open world PvE and that's for very good reasons. I reckon it's the most used content by the player base and I think people should realise that things like PvP/WvW/Raids/Fractals are closer to niche content than general content. It's also the content you can do with sucky builds and that's important.

    so any kind of population drop (or revenue drop) can only attributed to that Open World focus.

    No it cannot only be attributed to that. That's my point. You are too narrow in your views to allow for other possibilities but I'll tell you this as a starting point: I am entirely focused on open world content, that's the part I enjoy in this game the most and I've stopped playing again.

    So no, it's not the focus on open world pve that is the sole possibility here.
    Also, since revenue is dropped and revenue consists of two things: box sales and gemstore sales. So box sales means the amount of expansion sales and relates more to an influx of new players, or lack thereof, and gemstore sales going down could be for various reasons. One reason could be fewer people but others could relate to people still playing but no longer interested in buying stuff from the gemstore. And one thing could be that the people who spend at the gemstore are players that've been around for a while and that market is getting saturated. So a new skin could be cool but hey you've got 20 already and well you don't need more bank tabs cause you already bought 10 etc.

    It would be a much more plausible reason for the drop in revenue to say that this game has a problem attracting new players and this could be attributed in part to the fact that the most recent expansion to the game was almost 2 and half years ago. New players are not going to be attracted by a game that's 8 years old and has had only two expansions, the last of which was that long ago because people tend to look for new releases more. Expansions put MMOs back on the new releases list for people. Sagas and LS patches do not.

    So you see, there's much more in play here that could cause the revenue drops that are not about the Open world PvE focus. And for me personally the open world focus isn't working because it's clearly more of the same and the new maps become old and abandoned too quickly. We're only getting snacks and not good size meals and the game moves on from that constantly. So if there is an issue with open world PvE it's that it's just more of the same and ever more fleeting.

    One of the great ironies of GW2 is that when they started on it, one reason that was given was that they felt people were too spread out over the continents in GW1 and they wanted to do something about that. So they made a game with even more zones and all they do is add more and more zones of the same type of stuff. And the issue is not the type of content but it just being more of the same. I mean I love the new map visually, so I'm glad to have it but what happens when the next zone comes out? It'll be a ghost town. They even took the dailies of the season 3 maps away and put them on a rotation apparently. That means they need to put people together in the same map everyday because they are too spread out. So that really is a thing.

    Now, it could be that there's a drop in people because there's only open world content coming out but it's far from the only possibility, especially since this is a casual oriented game mostly and open world is the casual's playground. I think the problem there is that the open world playground is too big and the new content is generally more of the same and a lot of the rewards are not that appealing. That's a content quality issue, not a content type issue.

    So no, you cannot conclude from those revenue numbers that it can only be caused by a focus on open world content. The point that it coincides with the time period that other content is not coming out is called correllation and that is not the same as causation. That's the logic error you are making with your conclusion. It doesn't mean that it cannot be the cause, but it does mean that it doesn't prove that it's the actual cause and other causes are quite possible.

    "In my experience, if you can't say what you mean, you can never mean what you say. The details are everything." ~ Minister Durano

  • Zok.4956Zok.4956 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 19, 2020

    @maddoctor.2738 said:

    @Gehenna.3625 said:
    You are right though that the focus of the game has been open world PvE and that's for very good reasons. I reckon it's the most used content by the player base and I think people should realise that things like PvP/WvW/Raids/Fractals are closer to niche content than general content. It's also the content you can do with sucky builds and that's important.

    Exactly my point, they've been focusing on the Open World PVE ALREADY, there are claims in this thread that they are not and that they should start focusing on it, which makes no sense. And that the game is suffering because it's spread too thin. It's NOT spread too thin, it's exclusively focusing on Open World content for at least the last 8 months, so any kind of population drop (or revenue drop) can only attributed to that Open World focus. When it comes to content type of course, other factors, like the lack of expansions, build templates, gem store and so on are regardless of content type released.

    It is easy to blame one type of content as the reason for the suffering (of the game and players), but I do not think this is the real reason behind the scene.

    When the lay-offs happened last year, I remember someone saying that the most people that were laid-off were not working on GW2, but on unannounced side-projects and now (at that time) the whole company will focus on GW2. But from the amount of content that was delivered until now, it does not look this way.

    Of course Anet struggled a lot in 2019 and was (which is understandably) self-absorbed because of the lay-offs (and also people leaving the studio after that) and the following restructuring (which could also be called "groundwork") and this is probably a major reason, why they did not deliver more and better content, yet. On the other hand, there are again rumours and signs, that Anet is already (or still) working on side-projects.

    Adding to that are misconceptions (that are sometimes typical for Anet) like the templates. Where it seems it was delivered unfinished and no one at Anet asked themself "Is what we deliver fun to use and helpful?" and Anet also was too greedy in their monetization.

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    Register and check your guild leaderboard to see who is the best in your guild and who finished achievements first.