Well, it's finally official the MMO we all have been waiting for, the answer to all our problems, the WoW killer and the new MMO king ArenaNet's Guild Wars 2, has launched. However can this game really live up to everyone’s expectations?
Let me start off by saying the game is certainly good. However I am not sure if GW2 will be the WoW killer we have all been waiting for.
What I like!
GW2 has certainly innovated the MMO genre. Allot of the things that make you mad about leveling in other MMOs are fixed in GW2. To really understand this you really have to play Guild Wars 2 but here are some of my favorite improvements.
Automatic quests are one of my favorite things in GW2. You no longer have to clear spiders to get to a quest giver just to find out that he wants you to kill 10 spiders. It’s all automatic, say you walk up to a farm that is spider infested, your quest will automatically appear saying kill spiders, and disappear when you leave the area so your quest list is never cluttered. Also when you finish the quest you get your experience immediately and the reward is mailed to you. You can also check your mail anywhere :)
Dynamic events are also great. Once a while you will get a notice saying there is dynamic event happening. It’s just a quest that happens at random times that requires a large group of people to complete. However it is fun as many people in that area will run to complete the event. So you will find yourself in a group of 20 people fighting centaurs or protecting a caravan etc. It’s actually allot of fun
No need to party. You do not need to be in a party to play with other people. If you help someone down an enemy you both get the reward. You can’t steal other people’s kills. You simply just find a group of people that seem to be on your quest and help each other down enemies. This really promotes group play and makes it even more fun to play.
Automatic down leveling. This is also a great idea. I have friends that play GW2 but I may behind them in questing. No problem if they join me in a level 10 area they will automatically down level to 10 making the fights challenging. However they will still get rewards equal to their level. You can also party with people on different servers which is an amazing feature that I think is long overdue.
What is also good?
I want go into too much detail on these areas but the graphics & combat are very good. The combat feels very much action packed although it’s still hot bar based. Graphics are excellent both from a style perspective and visual appeal. Also your gear color can be changed anytime.
World vs. World vs. World
This is also a very unique and potentially fun part of GW2. Players from 3 servers fighting to capture keeps and supplies using siege engines in a persistent battleground (resets every few weeks). I was really looking forward to this and I have to say I am both pleased and annoyed. I am pleased because when you actually get into a large fight over a keep it could be allot of fun. However I am annoyed because when you die you have to teleport to the nearest waypoint. And it’s far. You have to walk and walk and walk back and if you get unlucky you can die in 1 minute of fighting and teleport back and walk and walk and walk again. Also my server sucks so we are really getting our buts kicked in WvWvW.
I will reserve my judgment over WvWvW because I think I am still too low level to really enjoy it. Also as I learn the map and how to fight better I think it will be allot more fun than it is.
World of Warcaft Killer?
There is still allot of content that I have not experienced in this game that will take some time to discover. Is this game a WoW killer for me? I do not think so. GW2 is different it lacks things like Raids, mount collecting, custom add-ons like the recount DPS meter, tank & healer roles (which many people like) & item level which are ever so present in WoW. I think WoW can (and will) adopt many of the innovations that GW2 has introduced and be just as successful as it is now.
At the end of the day I think GW2 will hit other free to play titles the most. GW2 is probably the best free-to-play title available today. There are many WoW players that will switch but I am just not sure if GW2 will ever hit the 10 million player mark.
I do want to add that Blizzard certainly paid attention to GW2 releasing WoW’s patch 5.0.4 on the same day as the GW2 release. I am not sure how well that worked out though as during WoW’s server outage I was playing Guild Wars 2 :)