Monday, May 25, 2015

Guild Wars 2

Developer: ArenaNet
Release Date: August 28, 2012

One Sentence Review:
It's a good enough game but it's nothing like Guild Wars so it's name is just there to milk the people who liked the first one.

Can this really be called a sequel? Let's get what I like about this game out of the way quickly so I can start ranting shall I?

First, the developers of this game have probably earned a Nobel Prize in sociology, psychology, and possibly the Nobel Peace Prize for this game. Why? Because they found out a way to get players to work together online without seething resentment and hatred. How? How did they manage this!?!

Second, the crafting system has improved greatly since the days of Guild Wars 1. Unfortunately that's not as big an accomplishment as most because the crafting system in Guild Wars 1 (along with most MMOs) sucks. This is about as good as crafting systems get for games that aren't Runescape or Minecraft, which remain the only games where crafting makes any level of sense.

Third, how the fuck did you people manage to get players to work together without torches, nails, and candles!?! Bring forth the witchcraft trials, I'm calling it right now!

Now I can begin my rant.

To start with, the Guild Wars team has a very powerful ability to learn nothing from previous failures. You see, in Guild Wars 1 you played as a sort of 'support character', a small part of an organization much larger and more powerful than your puny self could ever be. The gameplay in Guild Wars 1, however, supported small parties and groups which would benefit a storyline with the player as the central character. In Guild Wars 2 you play as "the" killer of such and such, "the" hero of battle whatshisface, or "the" eater of pies. The gameplay, however, shows off all the other "the"s in the game which makes your role more and more unimportant. There was a disconnect between story and gameplay in Guild Wars 1 and they've continued the tradition in Guild Wars 2 apparently.

Second, the gameplay has been dumbed down to an embarrassing level in Guild Wars 2. I tried to get back into Guild Wars 1 about a year ago and I was astounded to find that players were using build combinations that I hadn't seen in 4 years of playing the game. That's right, they're "still" making up new builds and counter builds in that game! Out of some sort of masochistic curiosity though, I checked the builds section of a few Guild Wars 2 forums and found... nothing. I mean there were plenty of build questions but no new builds being developed or conceived. All the possible builds were figured out about 6 months after the game started and that's what everyone uses. Everything else is gear related, and we already have World of Warcraft for gear-grinding bullshit.

Third and I'll cut my rant short here, this game just fails in its good ideas. Jumping puzzles to spice up what is usually just pressing left-click until something dies? Great idea if the camera wasn't constantly plotting your murder and screwed up 99.9% of your jumping puzzle attempts! Renown hearts that let you pet puppies instead of kill monsters to complete them? Great idea if petting puppies was more involved than just walking up to them and hitting the "F" key over and over again (it's still grinding damn't). Roleplaying options in dialogue? Great idea, if you had Bioware write your dialogue instead of your 5 year old daughter. Fully voiced cutscenes? am I supposed to roleplay if you're cutting out the chance for me to use my imagination? Not to mention the fact that it's been years and the game is still riddled with gameplay that feels unfinished, AI that feels untuned, and a number of bugs that require you to switch instances to avoid... let's stop here or I'll be writing a 12 page essay on this.

If you want to purchase Guild Wars 2 it'll run you $40 USD and let me be as blunt with you as possible. This game is not worth $40 USD. The replay value is too low, the enemies are too similar, and frankly the game just gets boring after your first character. As a person who has weathered through many F2P MMOs and the original Guild Wars 1, I give this game my Gamer Price Tag of about $25 USD.

You can purchase Guild Wars 2 from the official website here.
Or You can purchase Guild Wars 2 from Amazon here