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Feedback on mounts, level design and the way story progresses


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Hiya,

 

I am a returning player and have been an avid fan since Guild Wars 1 and early GW2 beta's.

I'm going to keep this short without mega walls of text to explain the issues that I am seeing.

 

Mounts and not having them and in particular the Griffon and Skyscale make the maps that we see today more like a chore than enjoyment. I felt like I absolutely have to rush to get the flying mounts in order to not get frustrated with the extreme verticality throughout the maps. This goes for all of them since Heart of Thorns has been released. The verticality is so abundant to the degree that if you do not own one of these mounts or hell, even gliding. You are going to have a bad time in Guild Wars 2. This is my personal finding and you may have experienced it differently.

 

The level design is fantastic and I feel like a vibrant world has been created, however, sometimes there is just so much going on in the screen. This goes for events, meta events, hearts, special events in your HUD. It can get over crowded quick. Things like bouncy mushrooms to jump on and updrafts for your glider take away a lot of the beauty that I see when I look at the maps. They (again if you look at point 1) are a filler for making people overcome the insane verticality in this game. Map meta events and in particular the Dragonfall one have so much going on that it's basically a rush and go or get left behind. You have no idea whats going on when you are new to this and you absolutely need mesmer portals to even keep up. 

 

For Path of Fire I enjoyed the story as lore, but found the order in which progress through maps and how we tackle them weird. I found myself going back and forth all over the place to do the story rather than in a single line up to bottom or left to right. In Guild Wars 1: Nightfall we went in a pretty easy and not so confusing pathway from Istan to the Desolation. You knew where the beginning and the endgame would be and that is miles better than what we are presented with today.

 

My feedback for End of Dragons is to seriously take a second look at your verticality and playable areas and where players have to progress through. I know from Guild Wars 1 that both Kaineng and the Echovald Forest will probably see massive amounts of verticality. Please do not push new players through agony. Not all players have Heart of Thorns or Path of Fire and the ones that do might not have the mounts. (I do have the Xpacs but did not have the Griffon or Skyscale, I am a WvW oriented player). If you put the same amount of obstacles through Cantha as you did in the previous expansions, you are hindering the fun and enjoyment that players could have in order to create locked gates and repetitive content that players may very likely not enjoy. (I thought the collections were cool until I had to do similar routes multiple times over for just slightly different collection items).

 

Fun and enjoyment better not be locked behind masteries. 

 

All in all I would say Guild Wars 2 is still a big giant in the MMO scene and I regret not playing it more over the years. I always complained about the direction it took and have been wrong in some cases. However in my opinion, to the above named points I do not think I am wrong. Please consider my findings going forward. I do not expect radical changes or any at all, but keep in mind that verticality is cool, but often not fun.

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You do not need mounts to complete the HoT maps. HoT was released a few years before PoF so there were no mounts available when those maps were designed and many people were able to complete the story and get 100% map completion before PoF was released. It requires more exploration, including some routes which really aren't obvious (I think it helps to not worry about where you're going or which points you'll tick off and just see where you can get to) and in some places it needs a group, but it can be done.

 

You do need gliding for the HoT maps, that's why one of the first steps in the story is to unlock the gliding mastery and it will prompt you to unlock other masteries when you need those too.

 

(Also if someone's new to the game and somehow ended up in Dragonfall I'm not at all surprised they'd be confused and my advice in that situation would be to go back and play some of the earlier maps, which is pretty much everything except Icebrood Saga, until they get more experience in how the game works and their character gets more experience and mastery points to train up the relevant masteries.)

 

14 minutes ago, bettadenu.5483 said:

For Path of Fire I enjoyed the story as lore, but found the order in which progress through maps and how we tackle them weird. I found myself going back and forth all over the place to do the story rather than in a single line up to bottom or left to right. In Guild Wars 1: Nightfall we went in a pretty easy and not so confusing pathway from Istan to the Desolation. You knew where the beginning and the endgame would be and that is miles better than what we are presented with today.

 

This one I think is just personal preference. To me it seems more realistic that the story doesn't lead you through a linear series of maps one at a time and then abandon each one when you move on to the next step. You're following events as they happen and things are going on all over Elona, it would seem strange to me if you never returned to a location or went in a different direction.

 

(It's weird enough in the personal story, although it's somewhat disguised by the fact that early on you're not actually able to fix anything, you just do a bit and then move on to a new problem and the path you take isn't actually linear until Orr when it was a military campaign invading enemy territory so it makes sense.)

 

I also think it helps reinforce one of the game's fundamental design decisions: that you're never really 'finished' with a map in GW2. Even when you've done the story and got 100% map completion that doesn't mean it's now irrelevant to you and you'll never come back, it's just as valid as any other location in the game and equally likely to be the site of "end game" activities.

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I think players are seriously shortchanging themselves when they do not opt for the HoT and PoF expansion, and getting the wonderful Mounts in them.  And not just for the easy, fast travel.  Mounts are gameplay and an enrichment of the game imo. I know one has to be careful about saying how people should spend their dollars, but with the promotions Anet has had, players can have it all for 25 dollars.  

 

I also believe that Anet may throw in HoT and PoF when you buy EoD.  The basegame is already free which is an amazing offer in itself, considering the amount of content you get.  

 

Wanting to change future content so that it caters to the base-game player that does not want to spend some extra dollars or does not want to do the PvE content for the Mounts, seriously ruffles my feathers.  PvP inclined players can't even use PvE mounts in their game-mode so not wanting to have to go through PvE content seems like an illogical argument. 

 

I gave you a crying emoticon, because posts like these make me cry.  I hope Anet keeps incorporating Mounts in future gameplay.

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58 minutes ago, Tyncale.1629 said:

Wanting to change future content so that it caters to the base-game player that does not want to spend some extra dollars or does not want to do the PvE content for the Mounts, seriously ruffles my feathers.  PvP inclined players can't even use PvE mounts in their game-mode so not wanting to have to go through PvE content seems like an illogical argument. 

 

I gave you a crying emoticon, because posts like these make me cry.  I hope Anet keeps incorporating Mounts in future gameplay.

 

I have no idea how you came to this reply. I never said mounts are not good, I am saying the verticality makes the game less enjoyable if you do not have access to the mounts and their masteries. If they decide to make Cantha vertically oriented as much as previous expansions, it does make the mounts a requirement or you're going to have a bad time. 

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The verticality you claim is causing players "agony" was one of the things that truly made me fall in love with this game.

The design of Verdant Brink made the open world feel dangerous in a way that no other MMO had managed to do before for me. The layered approach of Tangled Depths represents, to me at least, some of the greatest open world map design in any MMO, which usually contain flat-ish maps with static collections of mobs.


Hard disagree with your OP.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, bettadenu.5483 said:

 

I have no idea how you came to this reply. I never said mounts are not good, I am saying the verticality makes the game less enjoyable if you do not have access to the mounts and their masteries. If they decide to make Cantha vertically oriented as much as previous expansions, it does make the mounts a requirement or you're going to have a bad time. 

I am saying, that getting rid of Verticality in future content is bad, just because some people refuse to fork over 25 dollars for the expansion and get the mounts(as I said, I think the old expansions will be free with EoD). Or do not want to bother with the PvE to do the work for them because they love PvP and resent PvE and collection grinds. Or experience  "agony" because of verticality? 

 

Your request carries the danger that Anet will make content that is less enjoyable for me, if they get rid of the verticality. I do NOT want Anet to take a second look at verticality in EoD, I would prefer them to incorporate Mounts in not only the world but also in the progression. They should throw in HoT and PoF for free when you buy the expansion, so the money barrier would be solved. If you as player then choose to not get the Mount masteries  anyway then I do not know what to say. The game progresses, Mounts are here to stay and they are actually great. Please infuse the World with their gameplay, we are done with the MMO where you had to walk everywhere. 

 

I want a game with verticality, lots of it and you do not. It is a difference of opinion I guess, but I will join into  every thread where people ask for changes that will affect my fun so yeah.  Can't wait to have to scale those huge buildings in Kaineng. 🙂  Maybe even with a new mount? The Crawler?

Edited by Tyncale.1629
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5 minutes ago, Tyncale.1629 said:

I am saying, that getting rid of Verticality in future content is bad, just because some people refuse to fork over 25 dollars for the expansion and get the mounts(as I said, I think the old expansions will be free with EoD). Or do not want to bother with the PvE to do the work for them because PvP.

 

Your request carries the danger that Anet will make content that is less enjoyable for me, if they get rid of the verticality. I do NOT want Anet to take a second look at verticality in EoD, I would prefer them to incorporate Mounts in not only the world but also in the progression. They should throw in HoT and PoF for free when you buy the expansion, so the money barrier would be solved. If you then choose to not get the Mount masteries  anyway then I do not know what to say. The game progresses, Mounts are here to stay and they are actually great. Please infuse the World with their gameplay, we are done with the MMO where you had to walk everywhere. 

 

Again you are confusing me. 

 

I have never said get rid of either mount nor verticality, I am stating that the verticality is so much that you need mounts to enjoy the content. If you start designing EoD from a verticality perspective then the player has to grind out previous expansions in order to enjoy the current one. This directly translates to grind and then enjoy, rather than enjoy first and then grind for a bonus feature. It means the player absolutely has to get flying mounts or springers and their respective mastery to progress and have fun. Stricly speaking, you do not need it to progress but the path taken will (in my opinion) be less fun.

 

Verticality is absolutely fine, but too much of it is not okay. (For that same reason that too little is not interesting). 

 

Also I never said people or myself refuse to fork 25 dollars, I never brought up pricing or the will to grind and get the masteries. I said that in order to fully enjoy these mega vertical oriented maps you absolutely need mounts that tackle this problem locked behind a big collection, time and decent gold gate. I believe that it is better to allow the players to fully enjoy the map first before being frustrated that area's you really need to be in are hard to reach or unreachable.

 

 I am mentioning a problem that I believe is there, some may agree and some as yourself disagree. 

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4 hours ago, bettadenu.5483 said:

Mounts and not having them and in particular the Griffon and Skyscale make the maps that we see today more like a chore than enjoyment. I felt like I absolutely have to rush to get the flying mounts in order to not get frustrated with the extreme verticality throughout the maps.

I've been playing without a skyscale (by choice, didn't see the need to get it; still got it later though) and whenever I see people on the forum claiming they can't keep up without skyscales I just can't help but strongly disagree with that. It might be an issue in dragonfall map and... that's about it?

4 hours ago, bettadenu.5483 said:

This goes for all of them since Heart of Thorns has been released. The verticality is so abundant to the degree that if you do not own one of these mounts or hell, even gliding. You are going to have a bad time in Guild Wars 2. This is my personal finding and you may have experienced it differently.

HoT maps were designed and released without mounts, so... not really?

And if you still don't even own gliding then maybe it's time to start playing the game and complete the content? Pretty sure that if you don't have the gliding, it literally means you skipped the HoT story, at which point... I'm not sure you're exactly entitled to complaining just because you want to skip over the whole content right to the end of it.

 

4 hours ago, bettadenu.5483 said:

For Path of Fire I enjoyed the story as lore, but found the order in which progress through maps and how we tackle them weird. I found myself going back and forth all over the place to do the story rather than in a single line up to bottom or left to right. In Guild Wars 1: Nightfall we went in a pretty easy and not so confusing pathway from Istan to the Desolation. You knew where the beginning and the endgame would be and that is miles better than what we are presented with today.

...isn't the only thing that's "not lined up" in PoF story the Desert Highlands? You have mounts, you can still use waypoints, you still have markers to guide you. I don't see a problem here.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, bettadenu.5483 said:

I have never said get rid of either mount nor verticality, I am stating that the verticality is so much that you need mounts to enjoy the content.

You do not need Skyscale or Griffon to enjoy content. All of HoT is manouverable with no mounts at all (and actually all the more fun that way to me), and all of PoF is doable without either of the flying mounts.

 

Personally I love the verticality they've introduced to the game. Tangled Depths and Draconis Mons are possibly my two favorite maps of this game, especially before the introduction of mounts. It's an explorer's dream, trying to figure out how to get places with the movement tools the game gives you. I really hope we will see more of this going forward 😄 .

Edited by Rasimir.6239
spelling is hard
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1 hour ago, bettadenu.5483 said:

 

Again you are confusing me. 

 

I have never said get rid of either mount nor verticality, I am stating that the verticality is so much that you need mounts to enjoy the content.

Verdant Brink was a much more engaging experience before mounts.

Change my mind.

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4 hours ago, bettadenu.5483 said:

 

I have no idea how you came to this reply. I never said mounts are not good, I am saying the verticality makes the game less enjoyable if you do not have access to the mounts and their masteries. If they decide to make Cantha vertically oriented as much as previous expansions, it does make the mounts a requirement or you're going to have a bad time. 

There were no mounts in Heart of Thorns, and it seems to be the preferred expansion over Path of Fire. 

The Masteries of Heart of Thorns and Path of Fire are much preferred over many other Masteries. 

 

It's just a guess, but I don't think HoT and PoF will be included in the End of Dragons release; at least, not at first.  Thus, there will be ways to complete the content without Mounts.  And, Mounts will make the content easier.

Just as with all previous releases. 

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Posted (edited)

Since when is completing a Renown Heart a 'grind'?

The Springer gives vertical movement abilities, is unlocked by completing a Renown Heart, and costs 1 Gold. 

 

Also, I think it's disingenuous to state that playing previous content (Expansions, Living World releases) is a 'grind'.  If that is so, then so will playing End of Dragons.  🙄

Edited by Inculpatus cedo.9234
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Posted (edited)
16 hours ago, bettadenu.5483 said:

Mounts and not having them and in particular the Griffon and Skyscale make the maps that we see today more like a chore than enjoyment. I felt like I absolutely have to rush to get the flying mounts in order to not get frustrated with the extreme verticality throughout the maps. This goes for all of them since Heart of Thorns has been released. The verticality is so abundant to the degree that if you do not own one of these mounts or hell, even gliding. You are going to have a bad time in Guild Wars 2. This is my personal finding and you may have experienced it differently.

 

This specific feedback and its general direction is really good. I really pity new players in Dry Top, seeing all these other players having it so easy / convenient. It risks them getting too frustrated / gated out that they give up on this game.

For you people that disliked this feedback, I hope it was relating to other parts, because new players are also important for the health of the game, and should therefore also be important to you.

Edited by Loke.1429
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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Loke.1429 said:

For you people that disliked this feedback, I hope it was relating to other parts, because new players are also important for the health of the game, and should therefore also be important to you.

You don't need to "hope the feedback was about whatever", you can just read the replies and understand who disagrees with what and why.

I specifically disagree with his "flying mount" complaint.

 

Edited by Sobx.1758
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Posted (edited)

I don't see the point of going back to kaineng or echovald if there is no verticality. These maps have fantastic potential with a design like those on HOT.

On the other hand, yes for shing jea and the jade sea, horizontal maps will be good. 

 

HoT was a masterpiece without mounts but the mounts just made the areas too easy to travel. 

It was a paradise to explore upon release of this expansion. The feeling of getting lost in the maps is an explorer's dream on a mmo

Edited by radda.8920
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11 hours ago, Loke.1429 said:

For you people that disliked this feedback, I hope it was relating to other parts, because new players are also important for the health of the game, and should therefore also be important to you.

I played at launch and quit after 2 weeks. I came back roughly 2 months ago. I think that classifies as a "new" player. HoT without flying mounts and also no springer was the best experience I had with the game. I strongly disagree with most of what OP said here.
What OP describes as "filler" felt highly engaging and interesting to me. Unlocking masteries, which make you see new possibilities of maneuvering the map was a form of progression I really enjoyed, especially because of the verticality.
It seems OP just dislikes exploration that involves having to think about how to reach your destination.
 

11 hours ago, Loke.1429 said:

This specific feedback and its general direction is really good. I really pity new players in Dry Top, seeing all these other players having it so easy / convenient. It risks them getting too frustrated / gated out that they give up on this game.

As for this part I also had almost the opposite reaction. I unlocked the raptor by boosting a character, but only really used it for core tyria, because that content was just way too boring to me. When I played HoT and saw people using skyscale, springer or griffon I didn't feel frustrated about not having them yet, I just saw something I might want to work towards. Tbh I was way more hyped for the yeetle after seeing people use it in TD than the griffon.

 

On 6/1/2021 at 10:50 AM, bettadenu.5483 said:

but keep in mind that verticality is cool, but often not fun.

I can't say OP is wrong for not liking these things, but when he says they're not fun, as if it's a fact for everyone, I definetely say he's wrong.

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On 6/1/2021 at 11:06 AM, mindcircus.1506 said:

Verdant Brink was a much more engaging experience before mounts.

Change my mind.

It still is.  There is nothing preventing anyone from playing Verdant Brink without mounts.

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On 6/2/2021 at 3:00 AM, Loke.1429 said:

This specific feedback and its general direction is really good. I really pity new players in Dry Top, seeing all these other players having it so easy / convenient. It risks them getting too frustrated / gated out that they give up on this game.

For you people that disliked this feedback, I hope it was relating to other parts, because new players are also important for the health of the game, and should therefore also be important to you.

I'm super glad someone understands why I made this post.

 

I'm somewhat taken by surprise and at the same time i'm not with the amount of people disagreeing with me. Dry Top is a perfect example. It's verticality, in my opinion, makes it frustrating to play. Having a flying mount is a massive game changer

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Posted (edited)

I left GW2 years back and never intended to come back.  Mounts changed all that.  Without mounts I simply could not bare to play the game.  It's as if the game was made for mounts from the start.

 

There is a lot of good in GW2 but the bad is really bad.  Bosses for instance, boss fight in GW2 have to be the worst of any MMO ever created..  90% of boss fights you are flying through the air, flat on your back, or stunned.  Only if the stars are aligned right are you allowed to get a shot in.  To add to the frustration, your own skills have zero effect on the boss.

Graphical effects ,  well I don't even have to tell you how bad the visual noise is in GW2, it's horrendous.

Edited by Joote.4081
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On 6/2/2021 at 6:30 PM, kharmin.7683 said:

It still is.  There is nothing preventing anyone from playing Verdant Brink without mounts.

From what i've read around game forums, any time someone says something would be more enjoyable/fun with limitations, they are unwilling to do it themselves and instead expect the developers to waste time changing things to suit their preference. Nothing is stopping them, they just choose not to.

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On 6/1/2021 at 6:00 PM, Loke.1429 said:

This specific feedback and its general direction is really good. I really pity new players in Dry Top, seeing all these other players having it so easy / convenient. It risks them getting too frustrated / gated out that they give up on this game.

For you people that disliked this feedback, I hope it was relating to other parts, because new players are also important for the health of the game, and should therefore also be important to you.

I think the OP made some good points, whether I agree with them or not. As a new-ish player (about 11 months), I found some maps very frustrating without mounts too. And I think it's important to note that some of that frustration was trying my hardest while watching people flap by on Skyscales and lunching on finger sandwiches while gliding lazily to the maguffin I was trying so hard to get to.

 

Personally, though, it motivated me to get mounts. Not that the OP should feel similarly inclined. There isn't just one valid new player experience.

 

Without mounts, the only way to deal with the verticality of some maps is mushrooms, which I personally find a little cheesy and Mario World-ish, but they're effective. Pretty much everyone seems to use mounts in-game, though. Even to get from crafting stations to the TP in Lion's Arch. This might add to the perception they're required for content completion even if it isn't true.

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On 6/2/2021 at 2:00 AM, Loke.1429 said:

This specific feedback and its general direction is really good. I really pity new players in Dry Top, seeing all these other players having it so easy / convenient. It risks them getting too frustrated / gated out that they give up on this game.

For you people that disliked this feedback, I hope it was relating to other parts, because new players are also important for the health of the game, and should therefore also be important to you.

But just like the HoT maps Dry Top is not intended for new players. It's a level 80 map and part of Season 2 so it's intended for people who have already completed some or all of the base game. It also has it's own unique movement abilities (the Zephyrite crystals) which are explained by NPCs just inside the entrance or during the story, although you can figure them out on your own if you really want to.

 

But most importantly it is not made for new players. Complaining that new players will have trouble with Living World or expansion maps is like complaining that new players in other MMOs would have trouble with raids or group dungeons, or entering PvP tournaments. Of course they will because it's not intended to be easy for new players, it's supposed to be the next level of challenge after you've completed the basics.

 

16 minutes ago, Yggranya.5201 said:

From what i've read around game forums, any time someone says something would be more enjoyable/fun with limitations, they are unwilling to do it themselves and instead expect the developers to waste time changing things to suit their preference. Nothing is stopping them, they just choose not to.

I find this strange too. I mainly play (and talk about) single-player games and in those communities self-imposed challenges are fairly common and no one sees a problem with sticking to the rules without the game enforcing it. There's never been a Zelda game with a '3 heart mode' where you can't pick up extra hearts, but it's a standard challenge for players to try to complete any or all of them like that. (The developers did make sure in more recent games that you're not required to pick any up, like putting the ones from dungeon bosses next to you so you can skip them, but that's the most they've needed to do to support it.)

 

But for some reason with MMOs relatively few people are willing to stick to limitations they say would make the game more fun unless the game itself requires it.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, bettadenu.5483 said:

I'm super glad someone understands why I made this post.

 

I'm somewhat taken by surprise and at the same time i'm not with the amount of people disagreeing with me. Dry Top is a perfect example. It's verticality, in my opinion, makes it frustrating to play. Having a flying mount is a massive game changer

One thing I'm definitely finding in GW2 particularly is that what some find frustrating others find just the right level of challenge, and vice versa. And just about everybody is willing to argue about which is which. It can be part of the fun.

 

For instance, I find it really frustrating that dungeons seem to be a thing of the past. Maybe they're good. Maybe they're bad. But what they usually seem to be when I try to find people to participate in one is over. RAID groups and Fractal LFGs often give the impression of: don't even THINK about joining this group if you don't have max dps/heal/whatever is being desired.

 

I can't really blame players for pursuing their own goals at their own levels, or for not wanting to redo content they've already picked over 100 times to suit us noobs. If there's no way to nerf some content for noobs so they can get up to speed and join those elite groups at some point, then perhaps ANet could put actual living people as guides in the game. So maybe an ANET employee (or a designated player ambassador or something) could run "Twilight Arbor for Noobs" on a regular or semi-regular basis. Watching YouTube videos can be a great refresher for mechanics, but trying to remember all the steps it take to complete a complex mission from a video you've watched a few times is much more frustrating than being able to do a guided walk through.

 

But by far, the thing I find most frustrating as a noob is the amount of bugs in the GW2 code of which devs are aware, but can't get time/money allocated to fix. Detonator Tonn was about enough to make me give up the game completely. I find it supremely annoying that I need to read a Wiki or forum posts just to find out what's wrong in the game when what's wrong in the game (in the case of our beloved Tonn) has been wrong for almost a decade without a fix being implemented.

 

Tonn wasn't enough of an annoyance to make me rage quit; but the idea that I'd run into progress halting bugs repeatedly throughout the game was enough to make me consider giving up to prevent the rage. Especially given another well-known bug is the tendency of players to get disconnected at the end of lengthy story chapters when a must-watch cut scene ends, meaning the buggy objective you just completed ... well ... you have to complete it again. [I still think this is a load-balancing problem on ANet's end]. I would think (but I'm absolutely willing to consider I'm wrong since I obviously don't know the code base) that moving the setting of the completion flag to the end of the last player objective but giving rewards at completion could fix this easily. Get disconnected after killing Mordy? No problem. The code knows you finished, so when you reconnect here's your reward, rather than your punishment of having to complete the whole thing again. Many of those challenges before a disconnect are extremely fun, and the sense of accomplishment at finishing them is real. But so is the frustration of the game telling you, "Waaah-wah. No soup for you," just when you thought you had it beat.

Edited by Danger Ferret.6342
adding my own pet peeves
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On 6/9/2021 at 3:54 PM, Joote.4081 said:

There is a lot of good in GW2 but the bad is really bad.  Bosses for instance, boss fight in GW2 have to be the worst of any MMO ever created..  90% of boss fights you are flying through the air, flat on your back, or stunned.  Only if the stars are aligned right are you allowed to get a shot in.

Sorry, but if that's the case for you, then it's not the game that's bad. If you want to press 1 and see the numbers go, then don't fight the bosses, but instead stick to golems. Otherwise be prepared to actually react -at least from time to time- to things that are happening around/to you.

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