Tuesday, September 4, 2012

GW2: Week One


Dire and I.


It's been a bit over a week since I started GW2, I got in the head start one day early and have been playing a lot since then. I thought I'd write about my impressions as I've spent more time dabbling with the game. More of an impression than my initial posts. Usually after a week of playing a new MMO I can tell if I will like it or if I start feeling myself pulling away. Curious to to how feel thus far? Read on.

I'm really bad about buying new releases. I am always wanting to hold off and see the reviews and thoughts of the masses before taking the plunge, but I love MMO games and it seems most of the time I give in and have to experience it myself. Usually after a week I find myself pulling away if it doesn't click. With Rift it was great, I think I lasted a week then I started feeling bored. I loved, loved, loved the events, but when they ended the questing seemed dull and boring compared to random grouping with people and defeating rifts. TSW I was worse with, I don't think I lasted a week. It had a nice feel and in idea it sounded awesome, but the execution wasn't impressing me. Taking away levels but yet making you still chase after points wasn't interesting me to, weapons couldn't be switched out as easily as I had envisioned, or even wanted, and thus it felt drab and slow. Add in the lack of tweaking for graphics and I was sorely turned off. Though the look and feel was something I really enjoyed and combat rocked, I don't know, it was a combination of things and it ended up not being for me. ToR, I didn't stick with, the world didn't resonate with me, but it had a great story. I wanted to play something new and fresh but nothing has really clicked. I didn't even bother buying Tera after trying the beta, the combat was not made for someone with wist issues, nor did I enjoy it.  I could go on but really I haven't really been impressed with these big new releases over the last few years.

Guild Wars 2 really seems to have clicked for Dire and I. I do see us playing this for a long time, given that there is fun stuff for us to do at the cap and that Area Net does build upon this world as they have mentioned doing. I could even level a few alts and probably still have a lot of fun, which I plan on doing, in due time. It still feels like the first Guild Wars, in some aspects, maybe the music and the look, but all in all it feels like a fresh game. Nothing revolutionary but the way everything has meshed together so well, very fluid and the execution is great. Last night I gained two levels and didn't even notice until Dire asked me what level I was. I was having that much fun. Some of the hearts quests can be a bit boring at times but you get that with any game that has questing, it's the events that really shine and there are so many of them.

I'm only level 27 with my ranger, which will be my main, my first to the cap. I'm not rushing through but instead having a lot of fun exploring, crafting a little, doing my story-line and just soaking it all in. Dire actually caught up with me last night. We managed to group together again, finally! The join button in the party window seems to be working again. Together the game is even more fun.

I thought I'd list some of the things I like and dislike I found myself making a list over the last few days and really the pros outweigh the cons, thus far. Add in the fact that the game doesn't have a subscription, it isn't feeling like the run of the mill 'bleed your wallet until it shrivels up F2P MMO'. It's just the way the original Guild Wars was, I've always said that this is my favorite F2P model and they've really nailed it again. I will be more than happy to help fund the game through the cash shop with fluff and whatnot.

The good stuff:

  • Dye. You can dye on the go, you unlock a color and can keep using it over and over. No charge to dye. This is an excellent system and I absolutely love it! While dye is bind on character, not account, I am quite happy how it works.
  • Character animations and movement. Very fluid. Have you noticed that when you stand on uneven ground or on a hill your character will lean it's weight off one foot onto the other? Or perhaps when your character stops running they sort of slow down to a stop and swing their arms (think DA and DA2 here), I just love that. Ability animations are great too, fluid and smooth. I love the animations in this game. Oh yeah, we can jump in a GW2 game, I think they added vistas just to make up for the lack of it in the original game, ha!
  • 'We make a great team!' I love it when my little ranger yells that out. And you (other players) can hear it too! I love the little things the characters say through the game. Everyone else around can hear too, which is neat. Last night I was swimming and my character remarked how nice it felt. I suppose it was refreshing after a hard day of battle!
  • Combat. Combat clicks with me. I love the different abilities tied to different weapons. I love switching them out and having a different style of play. The game isn't super hard but it still causes you to think. Pro-tip- Read those little words under the mob's health bar, they can help. I wanted to scream on a fight the other day when the mob absorbed ranged attacks but everyone was attacking with range, lol. Needless to say I ended up moving on.
  • Exploring is great and to be rewarded for it is just icing on the cake. Completing maps and getting some goodies and xp, I'm in explorer's heaven. It really makes you want to explore every little nook and cranny. Even if there isn't anything on the map, sometimes there can be a mob with a chest or some yummy nodes.
  • XP for everyone! I love that you get xp for everything you do. You get xp if you rez someone, if you harvest, if you craft, if you explore, if you sneeze... Okay, I made that one up.
  • The races. I love the races in this game. So many awesome looking characters, a little something for everyone?
  • Running/moving and casting/using abilities. Awesome! I thought it kicked arse in Vanguard SoH and I think it does in this game too, except here it isn't slowing you down.
  • NPC dialogue. Some of it is truly hilarious if you sit and listen to it. I like the way the world feels alive.
  • Story-line quest. I about fell out of my chair last night when I heard Dire's character begging for one last shot at being in the circus. When he made the character we thought it would be funny for that to be his one true regret. I have GOT to pick that with my next character. It was hilarious to hear his character talk about the circus. He did get teased about joining the circus the rest of the night, how could I resist? Got any good circus jokes to share with me? Mwhahaha.. But yeah, I'm also having a nice time with mine, it isn't as humorous though. I want to try out to be a clown and a mime... Seriously, lol. 
  • Anyone can rez.  I've had the message pop up' Too many rezzers', when trying to rez a player, it's pure awesome. Then again I've laid in the mud and had to walk back too, but more often than not people are always wanting to rez others, it's so great. I've had people rez me multiple times and I love to help and rez others too. So much love ;)
  • No downtime, the need to eat or drink to med up and so on. Once out of combat your health and mana zoom to full. Need I say more?
  • Cross server tells and groups (guesting). Not the only game to do this but I'm glad to see it added, more games need these options. 
  • Daily quests, love the goodies we get from these and you'll end up doing these things anyhow. 

Meh:

  • My daily quest resets at 7pm. What the heck? Seriously? That is like one of the worst times for a reset IMO. I was sure I picked a US server... You never know though. I just thought this was very, very odd, resetting in the evening on me.
  • No mounts. Not a huge deal, I just miss them. Just the feel of adventuring around. Though the fast travel on maps helps, sometimes I'd just like to run around on a mount instead.
  • Forums and Auction system down, this will be in the past- hopefully in the near future. I know the people at ANet are working hard to keep things running smooth, just had to go in the meh list though. 
  • Direction to start with. This wasn't a problem for me, but for some the lack of a tutorial or direction might be a bit daunting at first. Completely new MMO players might feel a bit lost and not understand wandering around is what you're supposed to be doing. Though there are NPC's when you first head out that can direct you. That was a big help to just see where I could go.
  • Monthly reward 'quest' thing wants me to PvP. *Whines* But I don't wanna! Maybe later.

That about sums up what I've thought about the game over the past week. When I log in I don't know what I'll be doing, it's fun. Maybe I'll help some fish people, maybe I'll kill a big monster, maybe I'll gather some herbs to cook with. I leave you with some shots of my time in Tyria thus far. Yes, massive amounts of pics! I pay extra each year for the storage and I'm damn well gonna utilize the hell out of it!! Enjoy ;)

But I don't wanna die! Fight!

Evenings are lovely in GW2.

Gorgeous area shot from a vista.

An elf and his bear.

Battle!

We need to go wash something.

Hello thar Mr. Rabbit, you look like you need a bath. Not part of the quest but equally gratifying to throw water on everyone and everything.

Let the bodies hit the floor.

Love my ranja.

Dire and I. His character is really scrawny, he said he was malnourished from living on the streets... lol.

Dire playing with explosives, must be practicing for the circus. *shakes head*

There is a mob in there somewhere. These fights are epic and so much fun! Like mini raids w/o all the hassle!

Skill points for all!

More epic fighting.

Scoping out the lands.

Sylvari area.

Questing scene.

Soaking up the scenery.

From a vista in The Grove.

Swimming. Love how the water splashes on the screen, such a nice touch!







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