Foreword: Surprise! (or not), this is the beginning of the so-called new content that I was talking about, I had wanted to branch out for quite awhile not but let’s just say procrastination got the better of me. After this event concluded I thought it would be a decent idea to do a personal recount of my experiences and stuff like that.
As you know, (or at least now you do) I have been playing GW2 on a semi-regular basis, and there is a severe lack of endgame content for players who have reached the max level. High end gear is generally easy to obtain with a little effort, PVE is virtually (pun uninteded) non-existent with no raids, only dungeons to speak of. The only real “endgame” that awaits players who reach level 80 is the famed World vs World, or WvW for short, alternatively there is also PvP, both of which involves Player-Killing (PK). As such, there is hardly any reasons other than those stated above to continue playing consistently, and this is where content updates come into play to keep people interested.
The Halloween update came and left quickly, unfortunately I don’t have any pictures of that to accompany my text but in summary it was mostly enjoyable although there was still lots of room for improvement. The next content update, named Lost Shores happened from the 16-18 November and as I initially said, it had good intentions but terrible execution. Majority of the reception was negative and it was hard to disagree with that (the event being a mess), and here’s a few reasons why.
- Being a one-time event – This was a huge slap in the face for people who could not participate due to the event starting at unearthly hours for those unlucky enough to be on the other side of the planet. For the record it started at 12pm PST, 8pm GMT, in other words noon for the Americans, night for the Europeans and guess what – 4-6am for the Oceanic people. Yes, instead of letting the event run multiple times across a span of a day, ArenaNet decided it was in their best interest to cater to the “majority” and leave people on the eastern side with a “better luck next time” sign.
- MASSIVE LAG HOLY – I bit the bullet and stayed up till 4am to check the event out since..you only live once, right? Anyway, the event promptly started and this is when the real bosses, the lag boss and disconnect boss started to plague many. I can’t tell you if it is hilarious or downright frustrating to deal with invisible enemies, invisible attacks due to the sheer amount of people participating and rendering/loading the game has to do. To top it off my rig is rather old so I had to deal with 1 digit frame rates whenever there is a huge battle. The last straw for me was when there was actually input lag – meaning that when I press a button it takes around 10~ seconds for that action to be executed, I can deal with dying instantly, low FPS, enemies and their attacks that can’t be seen, but this was too absurd.
- Poorly tested – I managed to complete the event after a whooping 2.5 hours, but I’ve heard that the event bugged out for some. In addition, the enemies were way over-tuned, almost as if they were meant to wipe a huge group out. Couple that with all the invisibility going on and the result is, dead people everywhere! It was very clear that the event has been tested to ensure it ran properly in most instances, but it just wasn’t enough. I was lucky enough not to be disconnected, but people who disconnected at the unfortunate moment missed out on the event rewards, which was a double slap to the face.
- Huge disparity in rewards – The grass is always greener on the other side, at least for me. The final rewards included a decent chance to obtain a precursor (an item that was required to make legendary weapons) that generally sell for a lot. What this essentially means is that one either strikes the jackpot, or not. Got a precursor? Congrats on potentially netting a sum of gold that would take average players MONTHS to earn. This isn’t about people/me crying because they got shafted by the random luck factor, but rather – how is this supposed to be fair? The main problem is that the disparity was too huge, so much so that someone on the official forums calculated that the “profit” gained could potentially amount to roughly around $250 real money. No one would spend $250 on a precursor for sure, but the point is that, the disparity is still there. I’m not bitter about not being “lucky”, since technically I still gained from the event as opposed to people who got nothing at all. It is just that there needs to be some kind of balance, to ensure fairness when it comes to reward distributions.
- “Stealth” stopping of the event – Although the event was officially over after its first run, people found out that certain overflows (copies of the map) were still functional with the event running. Yes, there were people who were exploiting this fact in order to gain multiple rewards, but there was also the other group of people who either missed out initially or disconnected who were trying finish it. Instead of announcing anything about that matter, Anet decided to bring down the servers and patch the event to stop continuing altogether. Effectively, this was the final slap in the face for the honest group of people who were booted out while desperately struggling to complete the event.
In short, this content update was almost a complete disaster, the only saving grace being that the people who completed it were rewarded quite handsomely for their
efforts sweat and blood (or sleep in my case). Oh..you got an item worth 100-300g while mine is only worth 1g? What sorcery is this!