The Pros and Cons of One Time OnlyNovember 18, 2012 at 8:30 pm | Posted in Guild Wars 2, mmorpg, PvE | 24 Comments
The last time I commented on one time only events I was dismissive and ridiculed the idea. In truth there are both reasons to like the events and reasons to dislike them. So here’s a more thorough hashing out of the issue.
It brings a lot of people together at one time. Seeing a giant crowd around you, having your whole guild in one place to do the same event and talk about it to each other can be really fun. Certainly it can be a memorable occasion, some might consider it epic. And there is a great sense of working together, certainly when the zone was opened for the first time the zerg that rampaged through the events was a lot of fun.
There is no reason whatsoever that it can’t be arranged to occur more than once for people who can’t make it. Family obligations, work, time zones, friends and having a life.
Further, having everyone at one place at one time over the past few days has caused some epic lag issues. Both the first day in Lion’s Arch and today in Southsun it came to the point where I could not use skills, could not see enemies, could not see allies, could not see enemy skill effects, had a terrible frame rate and was disconnected twice. I think I must have been rolled over by an invisible mob 10 times, hit by invisible poison a half dozen times.
Even Further, massive populations meant half my guild was on one overflow server while the other half was on another. Neither group was on our home server with the rest of our community. Not exactly a great guild or community builder.
The rewards can be pretty good. You will find no one complaining about the rewards they recieved on Sunday. Two exotics, two rares, the accessory and bag. All generous and lifted my spirits and opinion of the event as a whole. I find myself wondering how much of the rewards are for the meta event and how much for the one time only event. I presume it’s all one time only, it’s rather generous for even a world boss kill.
I didn’t receive my reward from the Miyani scavenger hunt on the first day due to bugs. On the second day the event went away. On my server the quaggan was stuck in a post, the largos didn’t do anything, the sylvari bugged out, and the asura disappeared completely. Jumping around to overflow servers helped but at no time did the Kessex Hills zone need an overflow. If you plan a one time event, bugs are a surefire way to screw it up.
The cinematics have been pretty cool. A great way to be introduced to the new Mad King or the karka. I think the creatures themselves are a bit grindy but such is the nature of scaling when you pull everyone together for a one time only event. Certainly destroying something iconic like the lighthouse (fixture of Lion’s Arch in the original game) adds some weight. And I liked some aspects of the events, like toppling trees or causing landslides or flinging rocks using steam vents. The scavenger hunt events were fun as well if you could get them to work. I like how lore has been handled, the writing, the setup, all very good.
Okay aside from lag making events unplayable, and bugs making events unplayable, the only other complaints I would have would be length and grind. 2 and a half hours is a long time to be at the final event. I saw multitudes of people taking breaks, getting fed up, quitting. The population of my overflow shrank a bit towards the end. People quit due to length, sure, but I think the main reason would be the “reinforcement” rounds with the Ancient Karka. The frustration of having things spawn on top of you is one thing but the length of time it took to kill veteran after veteran after champion after champion was a little much. Way too grindy.
Personally I don’t think it’s worth it. Giving players something massive to do together is great, but Arenanets servers have not been up to the task and multitudes of people are left out.
I also feel horrible for the people who missed out on the excellent rewards at the end, two guildies of mine were disconnected, several more were at work. What’s worse is I have to mention to them what the rewards were when they log in. “Oh yeah you could have gotten a precursor, too bad you’re a responsible adult who can’t log in to an MMO on the whims of the studio.”
I’m actually quite concerned that the excellent rewards will placate people into not giving appropriate feedback. I feel like I’ve been bribed to like the final event when throughout it I wasn’t having much fun.
I don’t know what Arenanet is really thinking on this one. Big events like this cause a lot of hype and players to come back and money to be spent and create an atmosphere that makes it seem like the game is alive. But the number of people they’re aggravating with poor implementation and scheduling surely alienates as many people as it excites.
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