Posted in Gaming, Guild Wars 2, MMORPGs

I Guess GW2 Really Doesn’t Want to Win Me Back


Not that I’ve had a lot of interest in coming back to GW2. It’s still installed on my laptop somewhere, but I had even given up logging in for the daily rewards once I got my third (or was it fourth) level 80 character from the tomes.

I never bought HoT. I’m not all that interested in HoT, especially after hearing folks who enjoy the kind of game play I enjoy saying it just wasn’t fun. I know they’ve been working to fix a lot of issues, but if I can’t log in and have some fun soloing in the world, while helping out folks I just happen to run across (like the game used to be), then it’s not for me.

Also, I’ve never once seen HoT on sale. Nothing like the sales they used to have on the base game. (Update: A week after I published this post, ANet announced they would have their first ever sale on HoT with the release of Season 3.) I just can’t justify paying full price for an expansion I’m not sure I’ll enjoy, even if it does come with an auto level 80 character. I have lots of level 80 characters already, and leveling was actually the most fun part of the game, IMHO. Anyhow…

Living World Season 3 Announcement

So, I heard about the new Living World season coming out. It’s the first big GW2 news that’s had me click on it in a long time. I was curious where the story was going, even though I’ve long since been lost to the story because I didn’t play HoT.

When Mordremoth was killed, all the magic he held was released into the world, and of course, there are plenty of factions coming out of the woodwork to claim it. Chief among them are the White Mantle religious cultists who worship the mursaat and are trying to harness the power of the Bloodstone to resurrect one of their gods.

There’s some good news, though, as hypercute Asuran researcher Taimi is working on figuring out how to take down other global, dragon-related threats. Meanwhile, the players found and protected a dragon egg from Glint, an ally to Tyria’s races. While Anet is teasing that the child may or may not side with the Tyria mortals, I’m wondering how Taimi’s going to react to the whelp.

Ah, Guild Wars 1 references are ways to get me curious. As long as they’re written well.

Okay, I might log in and try out this new season of… oh wait…

…you do need to own HoT and have a level 80 character to access it…

Well, scratch that, then. Living World story is now gated by expansion. Guess they don’t want me to come back to try it.

Regardless of whether you own HoT, you’ll want to log in while each episode is active to “bank” it for your account to play through in the future.

Yeah, thanks, I think. Like I’m coming back months later to playing old story that no one is involved with if you ever put the expansion on sale enough for me to consider picking it up. Come on. It’s been a year or so already?

This could have been the perfect thing to lure those of us who enjoyed the old updates and Living World stories back into trying GW2. I probably would have tried it out. Who knows, I may have enjoyed myself again. But instead, they’re gating it behind the expansion (though you don’t have to finish the expansion story to play it – makes sense?), and losing out on an opportunity to earn back old players who felt burned by the development direction long ago.

Yes, I understand that the game needs to make money. My Steam library proves that I’m not against putting money into a game or an expansion if I respect it. This game used to get plenty of fluff buys from me in the gem shop when I enjoyed the game play. But for a long time now, GW2 has been telling me that I’m not their target player anymore. So they haven’t been getting my money.

See, this is why I don’t blog about GW2. I’m still grouchy and bitter about the direction this game stumbled off to. I’ll go to my corner now, and dream of how great Tyria was… before it got monetized to death.



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11 thoughts on “I Guess GW2 Really Doesn’t Want to Win Me Back

  1. In all fairness, I must concede that the latest patch to the Heart of Thorns zones greatly improved their feel, by making it decently rewarding to pop into any zone, do a couple of events in the wandering-around-solo style, and walk away with some map currency.

    I think you would be able to enjoy wandering around the HoT zones, and gliding especially feels good now that it is client-side.

    On the slightly more jaded and bitter side, I can’t even remember -when- this HoT improvement patch hit, and I still have two more weeks before the content drought even eases up a little.

    And I would actually wait to see if the story quality improves any with Living Story Season 3, and if their content drop pace can be maintained for at least 1-2 more episodes (supposedly every 2-3 months), if story or novel content is a primary motivator for enjoyment of the game.

    Right now, it’s mostly long-term grind (as in repeating content or doing an activity repeatedly) in one form or another. Tolerable if you enjoy or are okay with the activity being repeated, less so if you’re not.


    1. Waiting is probably a good idea. I wasn’t fully impressed by the story in Season 2 — and story is a primary factor of what I’ll play. I didn’t buy HoT because Season 2 wasn’t that great to me, and none of the features excited me that much. I’ll still log in to bank the story, though, just because.

      I don’t mind repeating content and grinding a little bit, as long as the activity is fun. So it all really depends, I guess.


      1. Out of curiosity, because I am also trying to put a finger on this myself, what do you feel was not so great about Season 2?

        And conversely, what sort of story would impress you?


        1. It’s been so long since I’ve thought about the game, that I don’t remember much of the details. I thought that Season 1, while it had some good parts, got really annoying really fast with Scarlet.

          But then, Season 2 came along, and it just felt flat. I never got into their new characters with Destiny’s Edge 2.0 — with the exception of one or two of them, they annoy the crud out of me with their constant dialogue during events. Especially Jory and Kas. Ugh… we get that they’re in love. Please stop reminding us with terrible writing already. I wrote about this here:

          Anyhow, aside from that, I wrote a few blog posts about what bugged me plot-wise. Especially the last part of Season 2. I remember having long comment discussions somewhere where I made suggestions on “how I would have fixed it.”

          GW2 really tries to sensationalize way too much. I kinda gave up on caring about much since they’re always blowing up places and things players become attached to. I wrote about this here:

          About what I do enjoy in MMO story. I wrote about this here:

          Sorry for just throwing links at you. I think that the blog posts I originally wrote back when I felt the feelings capture my thoughts much better than I can now days.


          1. No worries. I appreciate the links, will go through them slowly and think on this further.

            It’s just on my mind recently that GW1 and GW2 felt different, story-wise, and I just can’t quite get a handle on why.

            The closest I’ve gotten is that maybe it’s the pacing and this interminable sense of plodding from point A to point B, discovering one “mystery” after another, but no solid revelations until long after everyone on social media already knows the answer to “the secret.”

            Will be useful for a blog post when I find the time. Thanks again. 🙂


  2. There are new items in the gem store more often than there are the types of sweeping updates we see on a regular basis in other MMOs, that’s for sure. I wouldn’t disagree that monetization has killed some of the appeal of Tyria. Perhaps the next Elder Dragon is made of gold and is using the ley lines to suck all of the money out of the coffers of the major cities. It’s up to us to defend the Robber Barons!

    I can’t say that I’m terribly enthused about the bite-sized packaging they’ve settled on. Season 2 didn’t leave a lasting impression on me. I’d rather have events that celebrate an explosion of players gathering and changing the world. Instead they’re declining to scale up players to level 80 (like in the Queen’s Gauntlet) and shuttering them in instances. Sigh.

    I’ll probably bank those stupid episodes anyways. Grumble, grumble.


    1. Oh, I agree! Not scaling players up to level 80 to let them into events really bugs me, too! I leveled a whole lot of my alts this way, and was really disappointed when they decided to take that feature away.

      I suppose you’re right. I’m probably not going to miss much with this new season anyhow.


  3. Might be just me, but i find the premise of this posting to be faulty. I mean, basically you blame them that you don’t get to play season 3 because you have not bought HoT. Considering that season 3 is the continuation of the story of HoT, there is some logic in their decission.

    Next to that, i think it’s also understandable if they rather add new incentives to buy the expansion, than for the base game.

    Not all is great and shiny in this game, and when something is shiny it might just be there to cover up something not so great. If HoT is your cup of tea or not, i can’t tell. Sure it’s storywriting is only mediocre, but hey, that’s already better than the base game. The whole way of how the maps are set up is different to the base game, but some people like it this way.

    So yes, i understand a lot of complaints about HoT, but the general point of this thread, that you’d only come back if they focus on the base game is contraproductive. They have to care for the expansion, which (next to glider skins) is one of their currently biggest sourcees of income. Putting more emphasis on the base game and abandoning HoT would send out wrong signals on a large scale.


    1. The post I read said that the GW2 doesn’t require you to finish HoT’s story to participate in Season 3. So it makes little sense to me to use the logic that – Season 3 is a continuation of HoT. Therefore, you needed to finish the expansion story to understand Season 3, and that’s why non-HoT players can’t have it.- Because… if HoT players who haven’t finished the story can play Season 3, then story is not the reason why this content is gated.

      The bottom line is, they want to push HoT sales on folks, but they lost a lot of us even before HoT released. What they COULD do is try to entice some of us back by saying, “Hey, check it out! Season 3 is here and you can play the first chapter of it whether or not you have our expansion. While you’re here, check out all the things that have changed and the new stuff we’ve added — you might just want to come back when you see how things are now. If you want the rest of the chapters, THEN you can choose to buy HoT. (or something)”

      I honestly wouldn’t be opposed to having a Welcome Back trial or something. Maybe the first chapter of Season 3 is available for a limited time – let me try it, see if I like the direction the game is moving. Then I can decide if I want to pay for the expansion. Heck, even the sub games I play give Welcome Back weeks or weekends for big releases like this to all players, unlimited content.

      Nope. Instead it’s “Buy our expansion (which I still feel is overpriced and has never seen a sale), or you don’t get to play the story with everyone else.”

      GW2 started out as an inclusive game. It makes no sense to me that there’s a Living World going on around just some people (HoT players) and not the WHOLE world (everyone who didn’t buy HoT). I mean, how can you write a world changing story that doesn’t touch every player within it? It’s quickly gone to a game that excludes folks – I’ve seen this development moving in this direction, even before the raids hit. This was part of the reason I stopped playing before HoT.

      Consider this faulty, but these are my feelings. GW2 is missing an opportunity to bring me and at least one other person I know back to try the game after we’ve been soured on it for a number of years. I’m certainly not going to buy the expansion that way (if that’s their goal). I guess they just don’t want my money.


  4. I agree with you Aywren. I would try this game out again if there was a welcome and a come try the 1st episode to see how you like it. I also stopped playing GW2 before HOT because I also was not satisfied with the direction they were going in. Also like many others season 2 did not impress me. I personally don’t have 60 bucks to dump onto a game that I prob wont enjoy. I have a large steam back log of games that needs to be played.
    I will say this, a good sale on Hot may change my mind tho, who knows.


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