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Do raids need easy/normal/hard difficulty mode? [merged]


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This is a heated topic, but let's have a serious discussion about it.


Raids are not profitable for ArenaNet

Let me say this clearly: I do raid, and I love challenging content, but I have many friends who are utter noobs, and can't learn to raid with what we have now. They simply can't. Don't start lecturing me about training groups and whatever. They can't.

Then they don't deserve raiding.

No one has entitlement to any game mode ever, specially hardcore players, who are pretty much those contributing the less to the game's finances, since they already have a lot of gold and convert it to gems instead of using real money. If we went by a simple metric of what is good for this game, raids are pretty much at the bottom. ArenaNet would make more money by just releasing open world zergfest content, than with raids. Raids are a special snowflake, and that's why it can't hold on forever, not like this.

Hell, if tomorrow they scrapped raiding altogether, and started doing dungeons again, you think the happy people wouldn't outnumber the angry people? Think about it.

Raids are neither viable nor profitable being exclusive content. We need more raiders.


Lack of difficulty modes is hurting hardcore raiding

I like my raids hard, and I guess many raiders do as well. I absolutely despise some of the easier bosses, specially escort and trio, and I believe the challenge motes from W4 should have been the default gameplay option for those bosses.

Why does ArenaNet put in those easy bosses in, then? It's pretty clear, and you don't need to be a genius. They're there for the noobs.

Because there's no easy/normal/hard mode distinction, all those difficulty levels are shoved in inside the same single raid mode. Because, as the point above shows, raids are not profitable if only the 1% experiences them.

We'll keep getting things like escort as long as there's no difficulty modes. All of you arguing against difficulty modes because raids need to stay hard and only hard, you're shooting yourselves in the face, and I hope you enjoy easy bosses and dumb filler events, because we'll keep getting them. Not like the normal bosses are too hard, either. I think VG was 2-manned a few days ago? Looking good for raid difficulty, eh?


Difficulty modes would be healthy for raids

First of all, difficulty modes don't invalidate each other. If you like the hard mode, you'll stay there. Noobs enjoying raids in easy mode doesn't affect you in any way. Are fractals ruined because you can select a level between 1 and 100? Is the top PvP league ruined by the lower leagues? I don't think so. Players start at the bottom, and once they learn, they start climbing higher, because no one wants to play easy mode forever, specially because when you go higher, fights and the rewards become better. Training sessions are lame, because you rely on other people willing to sacrifice their time to just help you. Noobs want to experience the content themselves, at their own pace, not wipe and wipe again and again. That should come later, once they've learned the basics and leave the easy mode.

Second, a difficulty split removes the need for casual events like escort and trio. Now the hard raid can be 100% hard, and not rely on pointless free LI filler. Even more, we can get a REAL hard mode, only for the 1%, pretty much like fractal challenge motes, where the content gets really crazy, and the best players don't have to waste their time doing the normal difficulty bosses naked or with half the party, which kinda ruins the image of raids.


Implementation ideas

Let's use Vale Guardian as the example:

  • Easy mode: Failing a green does much less damage (no wiping), blues teleport you closer, the boss and the red spark do less damage, and less CC required. Magnetite, one exotic, and chance for common ascended rewards per weekly kill. Some of the achievements and vendor options would be disabled.
  • Normal mode: Current situation. Magnetite, one exotic, one legendary insight, and chance for any of the vendor rewards per weekly kill.
  • Hard mode: Two simultaneous green spawns, blues stay as AoE a few seconds after spawning, and red sparks pull you gravitationally. Magnetite, one exotic, and guaranteed vendor reward per weekly kill.

Completing a boss in a mode will autocomplete all the bosses below it, and give you its rewards as well, so if you complete VG normal mode, you get normal and easy mode rewards, kinda like fractal daily chests.

As you see, you don't need a lot to split difficulty modes. A few changes here and there should make it easier for noobs. Hard mode can be more challenging to design, but since it's the hard mode, they can go really crazy and don't worry about a fair fight too much. A hard mode could be very cool to stream and watch, too.


I would hate to see raids disappear at some point in the future, and I want them to stay strong and healthy, for everyone, casual, dedicated, or hardcore. The above is my opinion on how to achieve this, but it's just that, my opinion.

So that's it. Feel free to vote in the poll, and whatever your opinion is, please express it civilly below.

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Almost 2 years since the last raid.   I told you, but you didn't listen. Pity the poll is gone, these new forums are terrible and broke everything.

If you want to play with your friends, then do that, not sure why suddenly anyone would suggest you can't. If you want to play in squads that don't play meta, then join the squads accordingly. If you

It's not trying to shift anything, but it sure is convenient for you to keep repeating in order to run from what you or some other people tried to push in regards of raids.   I'm not "jump

@GrizzlyTank.3145 said:Unfortunately when looking over at WoW, easy mode there "LFR" just result in exhausting players on the raid content. Now top it off with 3 more difficulties and once you actually reach mythic a lot of the joy is simply gone.

Why would anyone stay in easy mode forever if they get no LIs and they have zero chance of unique rewards? I don't see players farming fractal tier 1, most people farm tier 4, why would raids be any different?

The problem with WoW LFR is that it gives really good rewards almost for free, not the LFR itself.

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@Lonami.2987 said:Raids are neither viable nor profitable being exclusive content. We need more raiders.

How is a different difficulty mode going to bring us more actual raiders?I will give the exact same example I give all the time when someone mentions this terrible idea of "easy modes for training":Try joining a Fractal 100 CM while only having beaten Fractal 100. Or, since the easy modes are supposed to be a joke (based on your VG example) try joining Fractal 100 CM with knowledge of Fractal 25. To keep the comparison fair.

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If there’s an easy mode then none of the rewards that are available right now should be made made available to those playing on easy. The same goes for achievement and collection progression. Would you be fine with that? Chances are a lot of other players wouldn’t.

It seems with every new raid wing release, we get 3-4 threads daily about easier raids. All the threads are pretty much identical and cover what’s already been talked to death, reawakened, and talk to death some more.

Raids were designed solely to be challenging content for 10-man groups. The entire game does not need to cater everything to players that want faceroll content. If players want to do raids then they can join a training group to learn it, or create a group for it like everyone else did.

Edit: Fixed a double negative statement

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I don't go into raids, because the training is long, tedious and generally not fun. Wipe, retry, wipe, retry, wipe, retry, wipe, and in between even longer wait times to fill up the team than actual combat time as training pattern isn't fun, you know.

Only doing and training current easy bosses is humiliating, especially if the team you are about to join also wants do difficult bosses. It also limits you to a few encounters, and that's boring. I didn't even know that there are additional easy bosses like escort. From where am I as a raid noob supposed to know which boss is considered easy and which boss not? You see, I don't dig up the internet for too many training resources - I'd rather like to spend my time in the game, not preparing outside for the game.

With an easy mode, I assume training could be fun, because you are able to learn the mechanics ingame and are able to succeed the encounter at the same time.

Once there is enough training, I suppose I could go looking for the real bosses. My way to T4 fractals was like this. But if you add a hard mode, that means each raid is even more difficult than now, and there would be the same barrier as before. Only on a higher level. The same elitist groups that do the current raids or cm raids, will do exclusively hard mode, and my noob training is probably in vain, since even more mechanics are implemented in hard mode to train and to overcome. Therefore I'd like to see an added easy mode suitable for training and the current mode unchanged.

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I had this in another thread, but it makes more sense to state it here -

I know some people do not want to accept it, but the reason WoW is seen as the posterchild for how to make raiding work in an MMO is because the developers there adapted the game mode throughout the years and ended up with something that fits with the rest of the game. By including multiple difficulty tiers (including and LFG and flex raid tier), they were able to do things that a game like GW2 cannot, most notably incorporating strong story and lore focused content into raids. Since they do not have to worry about the accessibility factor, raids could become a deeply integrated part of the WoW experience.

And it worked (despite the complaints from elitists claiming lower tiers somehow "ruined" raids). That game offers some of the (if not the) best raiding experiences in the industry - and has done so for almost a decade now.

Unfortunately (I believe), Anet wants raids to be something different in this game. In a game that has always been about accessibility and community (where they even bragged about being the "friendliest" MMO), they have injected semi-exclusionary content. They cannot tie that content strongly to the rest of the story and, by their own admission, want it to be almost exclusively for a small percentage of players.

Given that, they have made the conscious decision to limit the size of the raid development team to the point where new raids will probably come 2-3 times a year, at the fastest.

So, what we end up with is content that feels disconnected from the rest of the game, that is only enjoyed by a small percentage of players, that people "master" within a few weeks (month at the longest), and that comes out at a snail's pace (unfortunately, rightfully so, given the size of the team and target audience).That is not a sustainable model for success. If you doubt that, think about what raids would look like if the rest of the game weren't here. No one - not even hardcore raiders - would think that was enough - or interesting enough - to warrant their attention. They are relegated to ancillary content at best. And, when that ancillary content cannot have strong story ties to the rest of the game and is partially walled off due to the math of raiding (refuse to call them actually difficult), it will eventually begin to feel more and more out of place.

Despite the reluctance from the developers and worries from hardercore raiders, the mode needs difficulty tiers. It needs them to justify stronger story ties to the GW2 narrative and to justify more development resources from Anet. Until that happens, we are stuck with how raids are now, a model that I believe is unsustainable longterm.

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I'll admit that an easier mode is generally not that effective as a training ground for harder mode. However, it is a way for more people to experience the content, and it would substantially reduce the hostility toward raider elitism. I don't see many people complaining about Fractals T4.

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Raids don't need easy and hard modes. The easy mode will train bad habits with regards to the raids. Those who are able to explain the differences would not play the mode that doesn't give them the raid specific reward in enough numbers to be significant.

Those who are not able to improve enough to do raids either through lack of desire or an actual limitation can do the raids by either paying for runs or by grouping with friends and/or guild members to be carried. That is if the want the raid specific rewards and players can be let into cleared raids to get the story if that's all they really want.

It's better for ANet to fix the learning of raid specific skills out in other areas like personal story and open world or even fractals. So that players learn the skills outside of the demanding raids.

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Arenanets development in raids isn't wasted.... People clear the bosses every single week. Most people that enjoy raiding play raids even after clearing for the week, and enjoy going in, earning there rewards, then going back in to play a different class, practice a need role, help out friends, etc. The content arenanet made is being played quite consistently by the player population they made it for, no matter how small.. adding an easy mode in would take development resources and apply them to the rest of the community to be able to come in and auto attack a boss, kill it . And then what? What's the incentive to ever come back for the easy mode players ? You won't be learning the boss mechanics (or at least shouldnt be able to see them all, it spoils the fight, think of the community going into dhuum easy mode, learning the mechanics and then going in and killing it , it would have spoiled the fight completely) you won't be receiving rewards, you won't really he having fun, will you ? After killing it for the first time in easy mode. You're almost gauranteed to Never come back . Now you've seen the content you've faught so hard to have conformed to your taste's, the current rewards aren't good enough incentive for you to raid now, they sure as kitten won't be after you've killed it in easy mode

It's a waste if time to make content for people that don't want to play it. People will go in . Kill it and never look back. How do you believe that's a better world then the one we are in now ? Where you have incentive to raid, where you get something out of it?

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Here's a prediction - now that a mod has moved the thread from the general subforum to the raid subforum, we will see the opinion skew heavily toward the "raids should only be hardcore" point of view in the poll.

It's something we've seen before. Limiting the audience will result in very different results. Sorry to see that happen. Hopefully, any Anet devs trying to read into any results understands that and actually sees the (admittedly small scale) results prior to the thread move.

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@Shirlias.8104 said:They are not hard since they are aoe farmed, and most of all i don't want that devs invest resources in somethins useless like that.Find a group or a guild, or better create your own.Been there, done this. Above proved untrue: I'm not trying to get into raiding any more after doing it for 3 months with two different teams.

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The OP's suggestion, if implemented and successful, would shift the overall direction of the game towards a more raid-centric endgame, closer to WoW than the game is now. That's not something I want to see. I prefer the current balance in terms of dev resource allocation, and emphasis on content type. I have no issue with different groups getting content they like. However, there are limits to what ANet can provide. I believe there is a good balance now between the raid population and the dev resources allocated to raids. Expanding raids would hamper content delivery in other areas.

I voted for "leave it as is." I could have voted for, "Drop the easier encounters going forward." had that option been present, but I read, "We need a hard mode but not an easy mode." as being in favor of two modes, current plus hard, and I do not want to see tiered raids become a thing.

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@Ayrilana.1396 said:If there’s an easy mode then none of the rewards that are available right now *should not be made made available to those playing on easy. The same goes for achievement and collection progression. Would you be fine with that? Chances are a lot of other players wouldn’t.

It seems with every new raid wing release, we get 3-4 threads daily about easier raids. All the threads are pretty much identical and cover what’s already been talked to death, reawakened, and talk to death some more.

Raids were designed solely to be challenging content for 10-man groups. The entire game does not need to cater everything to players that want faceroll content. If players want to do raids then they can join a training group to learn it, or create a group for it like everyone else did.

Double negative? xD "None of the rewards should not be made available."

Personally I dont think raids need an easy mode, but I can see why people envy the high quality designed encounters over a longer stretch than a single fractal. I kinda would love to see content that is like raids, with intermediate difficulty whilst in a completely different zone/area of the world.

Fractals are the right difficulty lvl (I guess tier 3 ish) but they feel very constrained. Raids might not be considered overly story focussed (subjective really) but it is there and the topics and areas they do cover are important to many players.

So a dungeons 2.0 as some "organised" 10 man content that isnt raidlike would definitely fill a gap imo. Especially as something half organized for non raid guilds.

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I have a friend who pretty much only has full use of 1 hand, he not only raids but doesn’t often fail mechanics and does decent dps on his condi warrior. He will never be a top tier warrior like you see in raid guilds but he is maybe 2-3k dps off what many other warriors are doing in these try hard videos I see with arc up.

Now I understand that for some people they do have limitations on how well they can do, however most people have trouble with raids not because the raids themselves are hard but because they lack the will or the drive to actually sit down, watch what they did wrong, own up to what they did wrong and work to improve it. I’ve seen people who are not what I would class as stupid (they have degrees) fail mechanics and perform a lot worse than my one handed friend, they have no physical disability and they’re clearly intelligent enough to comprehend what’s happening, it’s a lack of focus that is the issue.

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Right now we have 4 spots that are more or less fixed while the other 6 spots are more open.What could happen is an update to the LFG so squad leaders can more easily create "spots" for other players to fill. Once the most important spots in a Raid are filled, the rest can be really anyone. I got my first Sabetha kill by simply following my Ele rotation and then moving around her to avoid the flamethrower. I never watched a single video, nor read a guide on how to do Sabetha, I was the "10th", the person that was there only to dps, and they told me, "just follow us to rotate around the flamewall, and do what you always do, dps".The level of skill required there wasn't harder than the more difficult open world bosses, or story mode bosses, or fractal bosses. Rotate to avoid a flame, and follow your damage rotation, very simple even for lower skilled players. The same can be true for many of the Raid bosses, fill the important slots with experienced Raiders, then the rest of the slots can pretty much be filled by anyone with half a brain.Gorseval is almost open world difficulty content by this point, with the requirement of the players bringing good dps, something that you can be trained outside Raids too.

There are exceptions here, but the important thing, is that not all slots required to Raid have the same level of difficulty, a way to clearly indicate this on the LFG could be used to open up Raids more.

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@FrizzFreston.5290 said:

@Ayrilana.1396 said:If there’s an easy mode then none of the rewards that are available right now *
should not
be made made available to those playing on easy. The same goes for achievement and collection progression. Would you be fine with that? Chances are a lot of other players wouldn’t.

It seems with every new raid wing release, we get 3-4 threads daily about easier raids. All the threads are pretty much identical and cover what’s already been talked to death, reawakened, and talk to death some more.

Raids were designed solely to be challenging content for 10-man groups. The entire game does not need to cater everything to players that want faceroll content. If players want to do raids then they can join a training group to learn it, or create a group for it like everyone else did.

Double negative? xD "None of the rewards should not be made available."

Personally I dont think raids need an easy mode, but I can see why people envy the high quality designed encounters over a longer stretch than a single fractal. I kinda would love to see content that is like raids, with intermediate difficulty whilst in a completely different zone/area of the world.

Fractals are the right difficulty lvl (I guess tier 3 ish) but they feel very constrained. Raids might not be considered overly story focussed (subjective really) but it is there and the topics and areas they do cover are important to many players.

So a dungeons 2.0 as some "organised" 10 man content that isnt raidlike would definitely fill a gap imo. Especially as something half organized for non raid guilds.

Oops. I meant that none of the existing rewards should be made available. I’ll fix it.

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I wouldn't mind an easy mode.. would allow me to experience the content and more importantly.. the story without having to go to the crazy lengths normal raiders do to participate.

I don't care if rewards are rubbish on easy mode that's not why I'd be there.. and once i'm familiar with the content and the mechanics I'd be far more willing to attempt the normal difficulty level.. specially if there are some good rewards to get.

As it is right now.. most people don't want to take inexperienced people into these raids and further more.. many new players don't want to go though all the training stuff many people want to put them through.An easy mode would solve that for many.

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