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Why GW2 will fail on Steam without core combat changes. (Alac/Quickness Boons too powerful)


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On 3/22/2022 at 11:13 PM, Keegers.2573 said:

With Anet's recent post talking about wanting to have the perfect Steam launch, it made me start thinking about the current issue holding GW2 back from larger success. The game claims to be solo/"casual" friendly game and in most regards it achieves that. Until we get into the aspect of late game raids/strikes/fractals and the current meta revolving around them. The current boon system is a detriment to the game and kills it for solo/casual players with how necessary quickness/alac is and the massive dps disparity it causes. 
 

DPS difference

Look at the current EoD endgame meta and how much attention that has gotten. Optimal builds are pretty much required and groups are having to engage in gatekeeping behavior of manipulating map population to be able to do the event and succeed. There is a huge difference in dps between even the same spec/gearing of when you have quickness and alac vs when you are boonless. If you want to squish the difference between skill floor and ceiling looking at boon uptime and the basic requirements of these two boons is the main place to start. They need to outright remove these boons instead of just sprinkling in more classes to use them, because this just creates oppressive team comps. Look at the current mechanist build and how it is overshadowing all other supports.  For a game that set out to get rid of the holy trinity, they proved why the trinity works. They made a support/boon system that is unintuitive and unfun to play, everything is obfuscated. Side note, if your class feels bad to play without these boons, it is a fault of the class design. No class should be dependent on external boons to feel fun and engaging.

Roles and matchmaking

Because of the boonmeta we can never have a matchmaking system in the game. I know Anet said they don't want one, but lets look for a moment at the other competing MMORPGS on steam and how they compare to GW2. I will focus on the main 3 of steam currently; Lost Ark, FFXIV, and ESO. All of these games use a matchmaker for the majority of their content, why would a casual player play GW2 endgame content when they could jump straight into the content in the other 3 games with minimal delay. The timewaste of creating and looking for groups that fit within the specific meta of GW2 is currently killing the in game LFG system. Most the players I know organize outside of the game in different discords as is, how is a new casual player supposed to break into these areas easily and experience the content. This will be a major quit point for the majority of new steam players. 

If I look back at the launch of GW2 before HoT, you were able to take 5 berserkers and get through most of the dungeons/fractals. If you tried to do that now in strikes/raids you would fail miserably, while the increase in build variation is nice, they have consequentially ruined a groups ability to just hotjoin and go. Look at Lost Ark, difficulty of content and current calls for nerfs aside, you can join the Abyssal Dungeons/Raids (hardest available content) in matchmaking and you can complete all of the content without a bard or paladin (support class). If you wanted to try running a strike or raid without your quickness/alac buffs you would be in for a bad time. 

I love Guild Wars, I've been playing since Prophecies launch, every expansion, every living story. I want this game to be a huge success, but the current Boon meta is holding the game back. We as a community need to stop pushing this elitist idea that having boons and the current support classes makes the game skilled. The fun of the game for solo/casual players is completing all the content of a game at their own pace of how/when they want to do it. Being gatekept out of raids/strikes will be the major quit point for the majority of new players. 

TLDR: Quickness/Alac are game ruining buffs and should be removed if Anet wants GW2 to succeed on Steam.

 

This game is definitely not solo friendly. Atleast not anymore. If they release this game on Steam with same tagline its going to disappoint a lot of players.

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With Anet's recent post talking about wanting to have the perfect Steam launch, it made me start thinking about the current issue holding GW2 back from larger success. The game claims to be solo/"casu

To be honest, GW2 on steam will always show low player counts compared to most games - as they can't hide and lie about the player counts there it will be interesting to see. EoD has cost the game ten

I play Elder Scrolls Online as well and I much prefer the LFG tool in GW2 precisely because it doesn't dump you into any group with a space for what the game thinks you should be doing and instead let

2 hours ago, TheSeraphim.7413 said:

If quickness and alacrity are the only thing stopping GW2 outside of raids from turning into a DPS only hellscape that should tell you how serious of a problem it is and how much of a duct tape solution GW2's soft trinity is.

It's not about "only quickness and alacrity is stopping gw2 from turning into a dps hellscape". It's about pretending they want diversity and the proposed solution is to basically cut the support builds. That's not freedom of build nor it is increasing diversity.

Again, this thread is based on a false premise with claims about people broadly and consistently checking other players' builds, as well as trying to say any of that is required to complete the content. Both of these are not true. But sure, lets keep pretending that IF someone checks people's builds to make sure they are optimal in regards dps or support, then removing support out of equasion will somehow stop them from checking the builds in order to make sure they're just just optimal in regard of dps.

 

tl;dr even if we turn a blind eye on the initial reasoning, the proposed solution doesn't solve anything.

Edited by Sobx.1758
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2 hours ago, TheSeraphim.7413 said:

If quickness and alacrity are the only thing stopping GW2 outside of raids from turning into a DPS only hellscape that should tell you how serious of a problem it is and how much of a duct tape solution GW2's soft trinity is.

You mean like it is in every game ? When the goal is to kill things, everything that you're not better with than you would be with a DPS is better replaced by a DPS.

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52 minutes ago, Kulvar.1239 said:

You mean like it is in every game ? When the goal is to kill things, everything that you're not better with than you would be with a DPS is better replaced by a DPS.

Not sure what your "defending" in this case. That stacks are an acceptable outcome?

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On 3/22/2022 at 10:43 AM, Keegers.2573 said:

With Anet's recent post talking about wanting to have the perfect Steam launch, it made me start thinking about the current issue holding GW2 back from larger success. The game claims to be solo/"casual" friendly game and in most regards it achieves that. Until we get into the aspect of late game raids/strikes/fractals and the current meta revolving around them. The current boon system is a detriment to the game and kills it for solo/casual players with how necessary quickness/alac is and the massive dps disparity it causes. 
 

DPS difference

Look at the current EoD endgame meta and how much attention that has gotten. Optimal builds are pretty much required and groups are having to engage in gatekeeping behavior of manipulating map population to be able to do the event and succeed. There is a huge difference in dps between even the same spec/gearing of when you have quickness and alac vs when you are boonless. If you want to squish the difference between skill floor and ceiling looking at boon uptime and the basic requirements of these two boons is the main place to start. They need to outright remove these boons instead of just sprinkling in more classes to use them, because this just creates oppressive team comps. Look at the current mechanist build and how it is overshadowing all other supports.  For a game that set out to get rid of the holy trinity, they proved why the trinity works. They made a support/boon system that is unintuitive and unfun to play, everything is obfuscated. Side note, if your class feels bad to play without these boons, it is a fault of the class design. No class should be dependent on external boons to feel fun and engaging.

Roles and matchmaking

Because of the boonmeta we can never have a matchmaking system in the game. I know Anet said they don't want one, but lets look for a moment at the other competing MMORPGS on steam and how they compare to GW2. I will focus on the main 3 of steam currently; Lost Ark, FFXIV, and ESO. All of these games use a matchmaker for the majority of their content, why would a casual player play GW2 endgame content when they could jump straight into the content in the other 3 games with minimal delay. The timewaste of creating and looking for groups that fit within the specific meta of GW2 is currently killing the in game LFG system. Most the players I know organize outside of the game in different discords as is, how is a new casual player supposed to break into these areas easily and experience the content. This will be a major quit point for the majority of new steam players. 

If I look back at the launch of GW2 before HoT, you were able to take 5 berserkers and get through most of the dungeons/fractals. If you tried to do that now in strikes/raids you would fail miserably, while the increase in build variation is nice, they have consequentially ruined a groups ability to just hotjoin and go. Look at Lost Ark, difficulty of content and current calls for nerfs aside, you can join the Abyssal Dungeons/Raids (hardest available content) in matchmaking and you can complete all of the content without a bard or paladin (support class). If you wanted to try running a strike or raid without your quickness/alac buffs you would be in for a bad time. 

I love Guild Wars, I've been playing since Prophecies launch, every expansion, every living story. I want this game to be a huge success, but the current Boon meta is holding the game back. We as a community need to stop pushing this elitist idea that having boons and the current support classes makes the game skilled. The fun of the game for solo/casual players is completing all the content of a game at their own pace of how/when they want to do it. Being gatekept out of raids/strikes will be the major quit point for the majority of new players. 

TLDR: Quickness/Alac are game ruining buffs and should be removed if Anet wants GW2 to succeed on Steam.

 

Honestly this shows a massive lack of understanding on your end. There is a "meta" build but i have seen people do just fine of not better with custom builds made for their playstyle.  I have also run strikes with multiple of the same class, once again it is all about how the person is built. In the end a steam release would boost the player base without fail. As most mmos now days are stale while gw2 somehow remains enjoyable even if its in short bursts.

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GW2 has stopped being casual friendly since fractals , raids and expansion. The Devs chose to ignore this fact with every update. The steam launch will not go well if they don't do something about it. The game was getting trashed for this on the steam page already. It will be fun to watch though.

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1 hour ago, wmtyrance.3571 said:

GW2 has stopped being casual friendly since fractals , raids and expansion. The Devs chose to ignore this fact with every update. The steam launch will not go well if they don't do something about it. The game was getting trashed for this on the steam page already. It will be fun to watch though.

The game doesn't suddenly "stop being casual friendly" because it ALSO introduces harder content on top of what it usually already offered.

Edited by Sobx.1758
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7 hours ago, Mickey.4207 said:

This game is definitely not solo friendly. Atleast not anymore. If they release this game on Steam with same tagline its going to disappoint a lot of players.

 

Having group metas does not mean that the game is not solo friendly.  The entire story going from the personal story to the latest expansion can be done completely solo.  The vast majority of events in the game can be done solo as well. 

Edited by mythical.6315
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I've believed for a long time that GW2 boons create too much of a discrepancy in effectiveness.  I recall one dev stating that the difference in damage between top performers and the bottom is ~10x.  I'm not positive that the OP's assertion that the Steam initiative will fail for that reason is correct, but to me, that is too much of a discrepancy.  

 

I also believe that the exclusionary behavior which has been a sore point for many over the years would still be there if the discrepancy was 3x or even 2x.  However, with a lesser discrepancy, I believe that there would be much greater participation in endgame, harder instanced content.  Since raid participation has been insufficient to warrant ANet putting more effort into  that content, hanging onto the belief that the huge discrepancy is warranted may not be in the best interests of harder-content fans.

 

I also believe that spreading boon application around to more professions in the hopes that players who prefer profession X will suddenly be welcome in high-end content fundamentally ignores the reasons why those players have not been welcome all this time.  Such players want to play "their" profession and build, not their profession with a different build.  That has been the complaint consistently in the many threads about exclusion.

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Dear OP

 

I fail to see what all you points have to do with launching a game on Steam.

Steam offers games like Truck Simulator and as far as i know there is no way to boost your trucks alacrity or DPS.

Despite that the game has a very high rating and is offered on Steam.

 

Would someone enlighten me please what all that is about?

 

 

Edited by Kurrilino.2706
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35 minutes ago, IndigoSundown.5419 said:

I recall one dev stating that the difference in damage between top performers and the bottom is ~10x.

 

Are you that surprised that someone with an optimized build in an optimized party with all the good boons do 10x more damage that someone with a mix n' match of different gear prefix below ascended with an empty back slot letting the range weapon AA do the damage while having no boons and eating a sandwich ?

Edited by Kulvar.1239
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Posted (edited)

So general response to everyone so i don't have to quote everything.
 

Yes, I did just create a forums account.. I tend to stay away from games official forums because well *gestures*.. Everyone's bad posting reminds me why I stick to my dead SA forums. Again, I stated in the OP I've been playing since prophecies, and onward to today. It's not a lack of experience in end game. I completely understand the end game meta and how it works, I run the very same builds I'm advocating for removal of. 

I'm merely trying to bring a discussion about balance around alac/quickness and how I believe it is handicapping the game in terms of content. Those two boons are very overpowered in terms of how much group dps they increase across the board. The weird support meta is very obtuse to new players and unlike anything they've experienced in the openworld before getting to 10player content. I also think it would allow devs to create more balanced and challenging content in the future if they don't have such wild ranges of dps present. Two players could have the same gear but deal 5k dps and 40k dps, how can you balance content around this variability? Either the enrage checks will be too short for one player or way too easy for another. I view alac/quickness as the two boons that are currently producing the most variability. So, my solution is to stop doubling down on the system that has been controversial since HoT and fix combat before pushing the game on Steam. 

I also don't really think GW2 will fail on steam, I think it will get a small player bump, BUT it has a chance to grab a lot more attention. 

Edited by Keegers.2573
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39 minutes ago, Kulvar.1239 said:

 

Are you that surprised that someone with an optimized build in an optimized party with all the good boons do 10x more damage that someone with a mix n' match of different gear prefix below ascended with an empty back slot letting the range weapon AA do the damage while having no boons and eating a sandwich ?

Just to clarify...I was eating a taco, not a sandwich. I did have a backpack equipped, though. 😑

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11 hours ago, Kulvar.1239 said:

 

Are you that surprised that someone with an optimized build in an optimized party with all the good boons do 10x more damage that someone with a mix n' match of different gear prefix below ascended with an empty back slot letting the range weapon AA do the damage while having no boons and eating a sandwich ?

If they were not, they should be. Seriously, in FF XIV the difference between top 1% and the bottom 1% white parse (that's probably not only undergeared, failing to click skills, but is also dead half of the time) is around 3x. The difference between top and average is around 1.5x. In GW2, the 50-percenter is doing around 4k while that bottom 1% player is likely doing below 1k. And meanwhile the top player does 35-40k. Which makes the difference gap between different skill tiers in gw2 about 7 times greater than in FF XIV. In a game that is known for being primarily casual focused.

That's not on the players. It's the game design at work here.

Edited by Astralporing.1957
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13 minutes ago, Astralporing.1957 said:

The difference between top and average is around 1.5x. In GW2, the 50-percenter is doing around 4k while that bottom 1% player is likely doing below 1k. And meanwhile the top player does 35-40k.

You're comparing someone who isn't even auto-attacking consistently with someone who's doing a hyper-optimized best-case-scenario damage benchmark. In my experience, the middle is closer to 12k and the top 30k. And given the meta event in Dragon's End, ArenaNet appears to balance around a 7-8k DPS goal.

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11 hours ago, Kulvar.1239 said:

 

Are you that surprised that someone with an optimized build in an optimized party with all the good boons do 10x more damage that someone with a mix n' match of different gear prefix below ascended with an empty back slot letting the range weapon AA do the damage while having no boons and eating a sandwich ?

Yes. I was surprised when I heard this.

It's a sign of bad design. Of too many multiplicative combat stats. 

Let's assume we have someone who can deal 30k dps. With quickness, that's 39k. Whereas an inexperienced player who does 5k on their own will be buffed to 6.5k. By multiplying damage output with a percentage modifier the game rewards improvement exponentially and creates a drastically higher gap between people who min max everything vs the rest. It even creates an extremely large difference between people who do everything right but don't have one aspect min maxed.

This harms content because any content that challenges good, well equipped players will be quite literally impossible for the majority of players. And any content made for that majority of players will feel trivial to good, well equipped players. 

Cutting down the number of multiplicative combat stats and bringing the difference between players down would bring them closer together and allow content that is more enjoyable for everyone. 

You can play a flawless rotation, displaying absolute mastery of the game and deal ~7k dps (without decent equipment, poor traits, no boons).

That is not good. And it's not a sign of skill either when a different auto attack build can reach 20k. You are punished extremely hard for not min maxing everything about your build.

Which means there isn't a smooth path for getting players better but a massive gap that doesn't get bridged even after a decade. 

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12 hours ago, Keegers.2573 said:

I also don't really think GW2 will fail on steam, I think it will get a small player bump, BUT it has a chance to grab a lot more attention. 

Then, why do you make this point in your thread title?  It's nothing more than sensationalism at this point.

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1 hour ago, Nightgunner.2896 said:

You're comparing someone who isn't even auto-attacking consistently with someone who's doing a hyper-optimized best-case-scenario damage benchmark. In my experience, the middle is closer to 12k and the top 30k. And given the meta event in Dragon's End, ArenaNet appears to balance around a 7-8k DPS goal.

the 10k difference is from Anet's own data, not from your, mine, or anyone else's observational data. But as for average dps, you can easily see it on events like teq or gerent, if you create a squad for all the people to join in. Most of the squad will be doing 4k or worse. The people doing 8-12k will be those with actual thought out builds and consistent gear. anyone above that will be someone with experiences in hardcore content.

And as for 7-8k dps on DE, that's true. Except it is an overall dps throughout all the event, including the time when you cannot actually damage the boss at all. The real dps required will thus be higher than that.

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Kitty kinda wonders why one would say "You can play a flawless rotation, displaying absolute mastery of the game and deal ~7k dps (without decent equipment, poor traits, no boons)." as choosing proper equipment and traits are the very prerequisite of doing dps and those choices are part of said mastery in itself. Yes, boons make a big difference. Traits make a big difference 'cause they define fundamentals of the build. Gear makes big difference cause stats are suited for various roles and, in Kitty's opinion, one of the most beautiful parts of GW2's buildsystem in general.

But most of all, poor weapon and skill choices might be the thing that makes the greatest difference. With otherwise same build but different weapons, there can be over 2x difference in damage (for ex. warr's axes and hammer as one of greatest examples). Add in a condi weapon on power build, power on condi or even worse, heal weapon on dps and that difference can grow to 4-5x. Synergy. If you don't adjust build to weapon, even boons won't save you.

And another thing: Currently every class, aside from thief and warrior, has access to perma-selfquickness by gear, weapon and trait choices (they're not necessarily intuitive choices, some require mathing and knowing the trait interactions and how to create rotation) and usually they can also easily get full self-might. Also, 5 classes can do squad quickness (chrono, harb, cata, scrap and qb), 5 can do squad alacrity (chrono, mech, specter, wb, rev+mirage). The 2 classes that can't do those have spirits and banners going for them and probably are granted either quickness or alacrity when those unique boosts are removed.

As such, Kitty can't really understand the complaints about quickness and alacrity gatekeeping in longer term. Yes, currently some options aren't accepted but that's simply due to people not being aware of new builds yet (which is why Kitty's been theorizing and recording videos on them like crazy lately). After all, it's just 3,5 weeks since expansion and bunch of options became viable just 9 days ago when they did fixes to wb and cata. Kitty's not sure if anyone aside from herself has even tested healbinger and healbender yet (DPS versions are known but it took bunch of mathing to make heal versions work). So peoples, please wait for some time and learn about the options as guides are published (even though it'll prolly be Kitty's job to write some).

And on last note: For a long time, Kitty's indeed noticed the problems in peoples' builds and how they could be improved simply with better understanding of how the builds work. People running somewhat working builds is in everyone's interests, including themselves, and it's not like you need to run a metabuild to get stuff done. Simply something with synergy. So, if anyone needs a guide, "Buildcrafting Demystified" on Youtube. (shameless self-plug)

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7 minutes ago, LadyKitty.6120 said:

And another thing: Currently every class, aside from thief and warrior, has access to perma-selfquickness by gear, weapon and trait choices (they're not necessarily intuitive choices, some require mathing and knowing the trait interactions and how to create rotation) and usually they can also easily get full self-might. Also, 5 classes can do squad quickness (chrono, harb, cata, scrap and qb), 5 can do squad alacrity (chrono, mech, specter, wb, rev+mirage). The 2 classes that can't do those have spirits and banners going for them and probably are granted either quickness or alacrity when those unique boosts are removed.

This is the problem. It's esoteric to too many people. It creates a massive gap between people who know and who don't. And not just with one set of things but several layers of systems all with dozens if not hundreds of pieces of information that are deeply interconnected. It's overwhelming is what I'm saying and the game doesn't do a good job teaching those.

 

11 minutes ago, LadyKitty.6120 said:

As such, Kitty can't really understand the complaints about quickness and alacrity gatekeeping in longer term.

It's not just those. The main thing is how extreme the difference in effectiveness is and how exponential knowledge is rewarded. While presenting that knowledge in very uncomfortable ways that takes a ridiculous amount of time to properly get the hang of. 

This creates a huge gap between people who know and people who don't know. Causing issues as both sides find the other to be unreasonable (just look at this thread) and splitting the community. This is not good in the long term. It is the root of a lot of gatekeeping. 

15 minutes ago, LadyKitty.6120 said:

After all, it's just 3,5 weeks since expansion and bunch of options became viable just 9 days ago when they did fixes to wb and cata.

It's been an issue for a very long time and has nothing to do with EoD. All instanced content suffers from it. Fractals, raids and strikes alike. PvP too. 

 

16 minutes ago, LadyKitty.6120 said:

So peoples, please wait for some time and learn about the options as guides are published (even though it'll prolly be Kitty's job to write some).

Guides on third party websites or videos won't reach the vast majority of the community. Nor can guilds or chat systems solve it. Not entirely. If the game fails to teach these things then significant parts need to be designed around people who do not know. And any increase in requirements causes issues as it feels extremely antagonizing to engage with. 

If the difference between a good player with good equipment vs a player without was only 300% instead of over 1000% then it would be easier to get people on board, to teach them one small piece at a time and there wouldn't be a need to exclude them as much from content like fractals, raids or strikes. People demand LI and KP because of how extreme the difference between a good team vs a bad team is. One blazes through the content in 10 minutes per encounter. The other struggles to complete it at all spending half an hour or more.

Enrage timers completely obliterate one part of the community while being basically forgotten by the other part. This is not good.

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2 hours ago, warherox.7943 said:

I agree, quickness and alacrity are broken and should be removed. Will they? I seriously doubt it. But these mechanics and all the other various forms of power creep need to be addressed. 

 

Why not just reduce their effect then ? Why DELETE ? Do you want to delete healers and lower boss damage so you can do a full DPS run without being bothered finding a healer ? If Quickness gave only 25% increased attack speed and Alacrity gave only 15% increased recharge speed, would you still ask for their removal ?

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5 hours ago, Erise.5614 said:

Yes. I was surprised when I heard this.

It's a sign of bad design. Of too many multiplicative combat stats. 

 

You can play a flawless rotation, displaying absolute mastery of the game and deal ~7k dps (without decent equipment, poor traits, no boons).

That is not good. And it's not a sign of skill either when a different auto attack build can reach 20k. You are punished extremely hard for not min maxing everything about your build.

Which means there isn't a smooth path for getting players better but a massive gap that doesn't get bridged even after a decade. 

 

But then everybody would just go full Celestial because it you don't have a modicum of multiplicative synergy, specialization into doing one thing is detrimental and you're better being a jack of all trades. Do you want everyone to play a Celestial build ?

 

You don't know what bad design is. I'm not even sure you understand the difference between bad design and bad balance.

 

Also, that is the most unrealistic thing I've ever read. Someone who PERFECTED his rotation would have proper gear and traits.

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