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Is there any truly challenging PvE content in this game?


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I'm fairly new to the game. Decided to make this my main MMO over FFXIV due to PvP content, however I do like challenging PvE. I watched a video of a guy fighting Balthazar, some of the latest content released by Anet and it was pitiful. The dude facerolled the entire thing, I don't think he dodged a single attack from the God of War, was downed and killed multiple times, and beat the boss....Why? because he just respawned over and over from checkpoint and the boss did not reset thus he won by attrition. Not because he learned and mastered any mechanic, not because he outplayed the computer, not because he had an awesome build, but because the game held his hand and made playing like crap meaningless. My question is this; Do raids do the same thing? Is there a hardcore version you can do of these instances where it does not hold your hand? Is the majority of the PvE content this easy? A huge part of any MMO is the PvE, and I am not sure I want to spend that time getting everything handed to me. Challenge gives meaning.

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Short Answer: No

Long Answer: There is challenge but you have to go looking for it, and know what you are looking for. There's high-end group PVE of course, but that's not a 'challenge' IMO because encounters are scripted; learn the scrip and you win. Yay. It's more like a test of coordination. Anyway, to use the Balthy fight as an example (end of POF story, yes? not the avatar of balth in Auric Basin) yes you can technically 'win' by tripping over your own feet. This is fine because it lets anyone experience the story. There are a lot of achievements involved in that fight though, and to get them all you have to complete it in a single perfect run. The challenge is thus not in fear of failure, but in striving for perfection.

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Listen, if someone doesn't want to get good at the game and continue to play in that terrible noob style, then that is their call, not yours. Story missions are mostly single-player, so whatever they want to do in their own time doesn't hurt any of us. Besides, with an attitude like that, they will be barred from really challenging end game content that requires each player to have mastered the mechanics and know what they are doing. So it's their loss after all, not ours. ;)

The content itself is "challenging" when played right. If that person chooses to instead grief through it, well - see previous paragraph. :)

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Is there any truly challenging PvE content in this game?You haven't actually provided a standard by which to measure this, for you. What games have PvE content that you find challenging?

Keep in mind that the game is meant to appeal to millions of people, about 1/3 of whom will play at average gamer's ability, 1/3 below average. Story content has to work for them, which might be "death racing" to kill a boss. If that's not your cup of tea, you can choose to restart the mission if your character dies.

Elsewhere, there are open world bosses that not all can solo, challenging group content which is easy enough for many (not easy for others), and you can choose to solo some of that group content, making it more challenging.

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Like many other MMO's, this game has difficulty ranging from easy solo contents to harder group contents. It seems like what you saw was a story mission. Story missions are easy solo stuff, designed to be easy to beat for just about any casual solo player. It's not where you go for challenge. However, as somebody mentioned above, there are hard optional things players can do, even in story missions.

Though I haven't tried them, from what I know, high level fractals and raids are the hard contents in the game. Those are the ones where groups often ask for meta builds, or prefer guilds over PUG's. And of course, you cannot just brute your way through with continues in these kinds of contents.

As for majority of the open world, it's about what one would expect. Leveling is super easy, designed for beginners. Max level open world contents are hard for newer players (I often hear about newer players getting frustrated in HoT), but easy for veterans.

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Raids and high level fractals with the optional challenge motes is where you will get most of your difficulty.But I'm the same as you. Overcoming a challenges also gives the content more meaning. Luckly the game does have that, but like others say, its optional.For me personally, I love trying to solo group content. Besides raids, I tend to either solo or duo in both fractals and dungeons with a friend or with my girlfriend.You'll find a lot of personal reward trying to take on bosses and hard hitting mobs all on your own.

Theres a very small niche of solo speed runner players in this game. If you really wanna push yourself, Id suggest going through all group related content with at least one other person and test to see how far the both of you can get. Its a lot of fun once you get good at learning mob rotations etc.

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@TooFlyToDie.6495 said:I'm fairly new to the game. Decided to make this my main MMO over FFXIV due to PvP content, however I do like challenging PvE. I watched a video of a guy fighting Balthazar, some of the latest content released by Anet and it was pitiful. The dude facerolled the entire thing, I don't think he dodged a single attack from the God of War, was downed and killed multiple times, and beat the boss....Why? because he just respawned over and over from checkpoint and the boss did not reset thus he won by attrition. Not because he learned and mastered any mechanic, not because he outplayed the computer, not because he had an awesome build, but because the game held his hand and made playing like kitten meaningless. My question is this; Do raids do the same thing? Is there a hardcore version you can do of these instances where it does not hold your hand? Is the majority of the PvE content this easy? A huge part of any MMO is the PvE, and I am not sure I want to spend that time getting everything handed to me. Challenge gives meaning.

Raids and fractals are what you are looking for. The story is for the casuals so they can at least see what the story is even if they have to drag through needles to see it. The hard content is what you expect in other MMOs where bosses kill you if you don't do the mechanic and there's no death rushing etc.

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@"TooFlyToDie.6495" said:I'm fairly new to the game. Decided to make this my main MMO over FFXIV due to PvP content, however I do like challenging PvE. I watched a video of a guy fighting Balthazar, some of the latest content released by Anet and it was pitiful. The dude facerolled the entire thing, I don't think he dodged a single attack from the God of War, was downed and killed multiple times, and beat the boss....Why? because he just respawned over and over from checkpoint and the boss did not reset thus he won by attrition. Not because he learned and mastered any mechanic, not because he outplayed the computer, not because he had an awesome build, but because the game held his hand and made playing like kitten meaningless. My question is this; Do raids do the same thing? Is there a hardcore version you can do of these instances where it does not hold your hand? Is the majority of the PvE content this easy? A huge part of any MMO is the PvE, and I am not sure I want to spend that time getting everything handed to me. Challenge gives meaning.

Well, you're looking at personal storyline content which is designed to be completed by everyone. That's why you can just die and respawn and faceroll your way through. However, there are raids and "fractals" (basically dungeons by another name). Now whether or not those are up to par with other MMOs is difficult to say. I'd say I've personally seen more challenging content out of WoW, but then again WoW lets you outgear the content as well as play it on various difficulty levels so you do have a chance to experience the content at the bleeding edge and then grow into it. GW2 raid content is what it is. One difficulty level and you can't outgear it.

Fractals come in several difficulty tiers from 1-4. Each tier becomes more difficult. The enemies have more health, hit harder, there are extra mechanics on some of the bosses, and each tier beyond T1 adds what we call "instabilities" which are special debuffs that you have to deal with (e.g. enemies explode upon death, enemies enrage when they get low on health, you damage your teammates when you stand too close to one another, etc.). At T4 you get 3 of these at once on top of the enemies being more difficult and all that. And then there are challenge modes for some fractals, which let you ramp up the difficulty another notch. This type of content might be more your speed if you're used to challenging instanced PvE content.

There's also open world content, which includes a wide variety of group challenges. Depending upon the player and the build, many of these challenges can be completed solo. That's more "choose your own adventure", but the challenge is there to push yourself to your limits if you like. If you think have what it takes, I recommend trying to solo some of the HoT HP champions (Hint: The toughest are Vampire Broodmother in Verdant Brink, Avatar of Balthazar in Auric Basin, and Mushroom Queen in Tangled Depths). If those don't seem all that challenging, give PoF bounty solos a try. There are over 100 of these challenges and they have special mechanics called "unstable magic" that make the fight a little different each time.

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T4 fractals and or, raids are considered high end challenging pve content but only because the mobs have 1000million health and hit very hard but the AI in this game is very poor and once you figured out the Patten then after a while them fights become auto pilot. Sure you need people that can play as a team but builds alone normally wins raids than player skill (seen videos of people solo ark cm and who can forget the ghsot thief solo a raid boss)

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Thanks to everyone that answered my question. I have no issue with devs making certain things available to everyone difficulty wise, I just wanted to know if they were completely focused on the lowest denominator and didn't have anything focused on the more hardcore crowd. Sounds like there is and I just need to seek it out. Works for me.

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@TooFlyToDie.6495 said:Thanks to everyone that answered my question. I have no issue with devs making certain things available to everyone difficulty wise, I just wanted to know if they were completely focused on the lowest denominator and didn't have anything focused on the more hardcore crowd. Sounds like there is and I just need to seek it out. Works for me.

Basically fractals are endgame 5 man content and raids are endgame 10 man content. You'll find challenge in both, as there are sometimes even harder versions of these contents. For example the highest you can go in fractals is 100, which is already more challenging than what the average player can handle. But there's also an optional super hard version of 100 which has pretty good rewards. Same goes for a lot of raid encounters. Find a guild and have fun. I moved to gw2 from ffxiv in Oct of 2017 after having played ffxiv since 1.0. There's no comparison... Gw2 is awesome.

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@"TooFlyToDie.6495" said:I'm fairly new to the game. Decided to make this my main MMO over FFXIV due to PvP content, however I do like challenging PvE. I watched a video of a guy fighting Balthazar, some of the latest content released by Anet and it was pitiful. The dude facerolled the entire thing, I don't think he dodged a single attack from the God of War, was downed and killed multiple times, and beat the boss....Why? because he just respawned over and over from checkpoint and the boss did not reset thus he won by attrition. Not because he learned and mastered any mechanic, not because he outplayed the computer, not because he had an awesome build, but because the game held his hand and made playing like kitten meaningless. My question is this; Do raids do the same thing? Is there a hardcore version you can do of these instances where it does not hold your hand? Is the majority of the PvE content this easy? A huge part of any MMO is the PvE, and I am not sure I want to spend that time getting everything handed to me. Challenge gives meaning.

They added the death rushing "feature" with Path of Fire, I don't remember it in Heart of Thorns and especially the core game. Of course I might be mistaken, I didn't know this was a thing in Path of Fire either because I don't die in story missions. Raids don't do the same thing, dungeons and fractals (instanced PVE content) don't have death rushing either. Dungeons used to have it and Arenanet removed it because it was making content look silly, that they re-added it in the expansion is a weird choice. Anyway, the fight with Balthazar isn't so bad mechanic-wise, if you want to make it challenging, try finishing it without getting downed! I think there is an achievement for it!

I also hope you are talking about the last fight with Balthazar, because the first fight with him is supposed to be this way. He is reviving you, to show you how pointless fighting him is because he is way above your power level. It makes sense story-wise in that part but of course it doesn't make any sense at any other point in the game.

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go to HoT and aggro any vet/elite/champ, do Hps solo, PoF just walk on any bounty solo. Core? welcome to Orr, find a giant champ and try to hit it. Not chaledging enough? Try to solo dungeons. Fractals.Still not enough? Pug a raid.

Story was deliberately made easy so player of any skill can complete it. That is the point of story, right? One wants to know what is happening.

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Yes there is challenging content, but don't look for it in the personal story or other popular content. As soon as something popular gets "too hard"(meaining that there is a possibility to die if you only autoattack and don't move) the community cries for a nerf and usually gets it done within a year or two to have the content further simplified. It's the price we pay for the casual approach to MMOs GW2 takes.

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@"lokh.2695" said:Yes there is challenging content, but don't look for it in the personal story or other popular content.

I don't think the story of GW2 is super easy, some fights can be challenging. Design/mechanics do exist and they make the content fun and engaging. The "problem" with more recent content is that there is no penalty for getting killed and it allows brute forcing through the fights to finish them. Instead of doing this, which defeats the purpose of having mechanics in the first place, they could instead add checkpoints on harder fights and only "reload" the fight to the latest checkpoint, this is how Heart of Thorns worked. It's a bit puzzling that they allow death rushing now and given how, despite it being a thing, people still complain about difficulty (death rushing isn't fun) I don't think allowing it was a positive thing for the game.

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