[complaining], Whining, Expletives
A Post Beta Weekend Commentary
- by Sylvinstar
I started out last beta weekend, writer’s heart afire with the desire to write a masterpiece about the warrior class, but it didn’t take me long to figure out that, even with the decent amount of hours I had dedicated to the beta, I would be filling a digital page with very little that you could not find elsewhere in greater detail. Instead, I’d like to take a few minutes to talk with you about something I like to call beta aftermath.
With apologies to Alphonse Karr - though games have changed, the aftermath of beta events have remained the same.
I’m not going to try to sneak up on you with my premise. For first time testers in this beta weekend there was nowhere near the time available to adequately test the game systems and come away with half the bold statements being feverishly scrawled across the beta forum walls by the masses. As per-usual, the ratio of half thought-out claims and counter claims to balanced, thoughtful posts on every detail that someone may or may not have spent a whole five seconds testing was about 10/1. And as ever, this was nowhere more apparent than in posts concerning class abilities and PvP.
I can say this with complete aplomb. If this was your first experience with Guild Wars 2, there is no way you could possibly pass judgment on a good deal of the classes and their abilities. True, you could talk about how things felt, or how a certain ability seemed to need tweaking, but if you were completely honest with yourself you would have to admit that you were wanting, nay needing, more time to test out a lot of the available abilities and synergies before being able to pass any kind of honest judgement.
One simple example is the current debate about the warrior abilities, such as “Hundred Blades”, which root your warrior in place when they are activated. I have to admit, when I first tried out my shiny, new great sword in open world PvP, I was frustrated with the fact that people could just walk away from me and not even spill their ice cream after I activated this ability. Okay it wasn’t the lack of results that was frustrating as much as the fact that I knew that I was a total Guild Wars 2 neeeewwwwb, fanning the air with a giant hunk of steal like a Super Saiyan hopped up on pixie sticks. I knew it, the guy on the ramparts raining unholy death down upon me knew it, and everyone else within line of sight a mile away knew it too.
Undaunted, I tucked away the last, microscopic piece of dignity left to me in my travel sack and forged on, pulling out my great sword only when sneaking up on distracted players in the rills and gullies of the battlefield (what happens in dark, closed spaces, stays in dark, closed spaces). While this tactic got better results and far less taunting, I still felt like one of the most powerful abilities for this weapon – a weapon that took up two precious weapon slots - was a bit too situational to make equipping the weapon itself more desirable than an axe and a warhorn. In a game that could arguably have its name changed to “Move or Die”, the great sword just couldn’t justify its use to me when compared to the ally inclusive speed boosts that warhorn brought to the table.
- And then I unlocked my first utility trait “Bullrush” -
I began to unlock a little bit of that illusive player skill called ‘patience’, and started picking at targets from a distance with my bow while keeping an eye out for strays or players on low health. When I found a good mark, I would close the distance, still firing my bow, and only switching to great sword when I got into Bullrush range. After punching Bullrush, I would pound my prone target with Hundred Blades and watch their health bar drop faster than an Asuran in a Norn drinking game.
Speaking of ranged weapons and complaints based on very little thought… Another complaint lobbied against ArenaNet was that warrior with rifle did way too much damage (note that this post was somewhere in the vicinity of the post where someone was complaining that melee characters in the game sucked because ranged characters were too powerful in comparison). The rifle may have done a lot more damage for some, than what I experienced, due to traits and speccing attributes for rifle, but that would lead to a very one sided warrior that could be easily countered in other ways if people had more time to test, or at least if they took more time to think. Guild Wars 2 will not be a game where you can find the ‘perfect’ build and never have to adapt on the field of battle..thank goodness.
While it may sound as if I am jaded on the beta forums, I actually found some informative and balanced posts. It remains to be seen, however, which direction the official Guild Wars 2 forums will take. As for this Tyrian, I’ll avoid the hubbub, and stick to the safety of the Hub..bub.