Hello. Huge fan of the lore and universe around GW. Veteran GW1 player here from 2005 and off and on again GW2 player.
I'll preface this post by saying this opinion basically gets me in trouble with the entire GW2 community and I dont post this to hear the 1000 excuses I've heard over and over again over the years. I write this just as one man's opinion and experience (though I know of plenty in the GW1 community that agrees) and hope for some feedback directly from ANET.
As a human from Ascalon in GW1 and human player in GW2, the huge stumbling block to my enjoyment of GW2 is the Charr/Ascalon conflict and how that played out. I'm not mad about the charr winning that war as that made sense given the nature of how they just decimated Ascalon via the Searing. But what felt like a huge slap in the face to me the player are many of the designs that came to GW2 as a result.
None of which sits well with me as an originally GW1 player. Why?
In GW1 charr were warmongering beasts bent on conquering any and everything. GW2 spins a propaganda of "reclaiming a homeland" and yet we know in original 2005 GW1 they not only seared Ascalon, they crossed the Shiverpeaks and attacked Kryta (bonus mission pack), and crossed the crystal desert and attacked Orr leading to its destruction and the Cataclysm brought on by Kilbron to stop them. Am I to believe those are their homelands too? And now we are supposed to believe they are cute and cuddly cats and Ascalonian humans are the bad guys. I'm sorry but if there is one thing that felt so incredibly disrespectful to me the GW1 player and to the original GW1 pre EOTN it is this right here.
Why did ANET go down this path? I know one answer was to make them a playable race and not the bad guys anymore. I know another answer is that it's been 250 years so that conflict should matter anymore, and yet another that says "different perspective of the war" and of course the idea of unifying the races. I've heard them all.
But in the end, Ascalonians feel especially trodden upon by the game design and direction, and having the opinion I do of not liking the Charr and identifying with the Ascalonian humans as a player is met with much hostility in the GW2 community which will take every opportunity to tell me why my opinion and feeling is wrong. Problem is that I would guess the majority of people first entry into that lore is with GW2 and not from GW1, so its largely been futile to have that discussion.
And yet GW2 does provide one instance (human dead sister branch of personal story) where in Logans office I can identify as Ascalonian (and PROUD of it if I remember the dialogue correctly). And that's it. Why cant I identify more with Ascalon in the game. Why would the game assume I'm friendly and singing kumbaya with Rytlock. Heck, why does the game assume I dont want to be one of those separatists in Ebonhawke? There's just no further way for me to stay identified with that heritage.
Anyway, I get that the charr won the conflict, but I just feel that Ascalonian humans get especially trampled on and dealt an extra dose of disrespect in this game and I'm tired of GW2 community just generally trashing my opinions, my character's roleplayed Ascalonian heritage and dislike of the charr. It's like give me a paper cut, then pour lemon juice in it and rub it in salt while you're at it.
Maybe I am just too invested as someone who fell absolutely in love with the world and story and lore back in GW1. But it is what it is. I have never fully enjoyed GW2 from a lore aspect and this is a major reason (like 90 percent) why. At least within the GW1 community I know I am not alone in this thought.
Anyway, just interested in hearing really why ANET went down this path with Ascalonians and retconning of charr starting back in EOTN. Ascalonians are basically seen as the bad guys by everybody now, at least in my circles and you know what it makes me angry to this day 6 years after release.