So I’ve been trying out Guild Wars 2 with the group I play GURPs with, and below are my thoughts/recommendations. (You can skip to the end if you’re only interested in my final thoughts/analysis).
Obligitory World of Warcraft Comparison
Since all of us come from a WoW background at one point or another, I’ll start with the obvious question: How does this compare to the behemoth in the room? Overall I’d say that this game is an appropriate substitute for WoW if you’re seeking a game to pick up and mess around with at any time without concern for one major element: raiding. Raiding and storytelling are two elements which WoW has over GW2. Since neither of these elements interest me greatly at this time, I’ve outlined a few elements of the game below with my overall thoughts at the end.
Free to Play
Now with no monthly subscription this was my biggest concern, and maybe yours as well, how is the Free to Play model for Guild Wars 2? Well overall I’d say it’s a relatively good model. Granted, I haven’t done PVP and it seems like those who pay would have an advantage due to increased funds, but overall I haven’t experienced any sort of “pay to progress” roadblocks. My biggest concern would be if I started trying to play the PVP competitively that those who spend money can be at an advantage with smaller effort. It seems like this would only be the case because they bought gems, then gold, then purchased/crafted more than I could without grinding out gold at max level. Overall though, I’m very pleased with the F2P elements in this game thus far (far far far better than archage imo, if anyone has experience with that).
Arguably, one of the most revolutionary parts of Guild Wars 2 is the level scaling it incorporates into the game. This element has HUGE benefits to the entire game. The first and most obvious element is that anyone can play with anyone. Tank got on the other day and brought his level 80 to play with my level 16, both of which got experience appropriate to their level. While the quest rewards and item drops weren’t level appropriate for Tank, any objectives (such as 100% completing a zone) gave level appropriate items.
Keep in mind, everything below ignores split sharing with teamates in the area.
Lane Ranged Minion – 45xp/12g/18g
Lane Melee Minion – 65xp/17g/25g
For lane minions, last hitting rules apply, so smaller gold amount is for assist, higher is for last hit.
Large Harpy – 140xp/45g
Small Harpy – 22xp/13g
Large Buff Camp Ogre – 185xp/65g
Small Buff Camp Ogre – 22xp/13g
So let’s compare camps and lanes (non-shared numbers):
1 Lane wave – 330xp and between 87-129g
1 Mid Harpy camp – 280xp and 90g
1 Small Harpy camp – 184xp and 71g
1 buff camp – 229xp and 91g
***NOTE: Bumba’s mitigates the shared gold loss, but not the xp share***
So for xp: 1 lane wave > 1 mid harpy camp > 1 buff camp > 1 small harpy camp
For gold, it’s a little more ambiguous since we have to factor in last hits, etc.
Additional PVE sources of gold and xp:
Gold Fury – 200xp, 300g to entire team
Fire Giant – 200xp, 0g to entire team (plus awesome buff)
T1 Tower – 100xp, 200g to entire team
T2 Tower – 200xp, 300g to entire team
Phoenix – 0xp, 150g to entire team