Sunday, November 20, 2016

Friends & Foes

Today's daily events involved a jumping puzzle, and since people were helping each other out it got me thinking about the quality of the community in Guild Wars 2. It has its ups and downs, and I'll try to cover both in this post.

The screenshots I took today really ain't the best, but I still caught some of the chat that was going on. Essentially, two players were helping others out; one by repeating the jumping puzzle over and over again, and the other by keeping a portal up for those who wanted to skip past the puzzle. Mighty kind of them.

It's no heroic deed, but I've seen this kind of gesture more often in Guild Wars 2 than in the other online games I have played before. Not that there were no kind people on other games, but it happens more frequently in Guild Wars 2. Players also seem to be more capable of taking a joke both in game and on the forums. I remember this post of mine which got hundreds of replies until a moderator shut it down:

I think this has a lot to do with the gameplay. Guild Wars 2 is designed to make people work together. PvE and PvP are strictly separate, you can hardly disturb others in what they are doing, and you're often better off in a team than by yourself.

Another aspect to consider is the language: a great amount of people in this game speak English. The baguettes and bretzels who generally don't like to learn it have their own servers, therefore there is less of a language barrier than in games such as League of Legends.

However, there are still some aspects of this game that create distance, if not conflict, among players. For instance, we're allowed to join multiple guilds and leave them at any given time without any consequence. This makes guild relationships a lot more volatile than they would be if we could only join one guild at a time and received penalties for leaving it. 
In dungeons and fractals, the "zerk meta" has always been seen as a form of elitism by the Timmys and Johnnys who want to build their character differently.
Finally, among the most deplorable things I've seen, in rare occasions massive communities flood into a map during an event, like Tequatl or the Silverwastes, and demand of all the already existing commanders to tag down and for people to follow their command. Their minions sometimes go as far as flaming you for not listening to them.

In spite of all that, GW2 certainly offers a good community experience, and it shows just how much impact gameplay can have over it. In short, the more the merrier!


  1. Hey ^__^
    I see that I actually made in to the post! Nice!

    And yeah, I recognize what you're saying quite well. Online games can bring out both the best and worst from players. And some of the design choices ANet made do (heavily) favour teamplay.
    As I'm usually around at daily JPs, like today, I see a lot of positives because most people like what we're doing. But especially around events and trains in PvE I've seen some pretty deplorable behaviour.

    The open community circumvents the whole map takeover by "forcing" a new map for their events. You could take a look at their forums on how they do it, I never understood it completely... But it's a great workaround to the problem you described. It's only been an option since the megaservers though.

    All in all, I like the community in general. :)

    As someone who primarily plays solo, I prefer the current guild system... If I were penetalized, I'd probably never join any guild and speak with far less people ingame.

    If you ever need someone to tag along or help with a jumping puzzle, send me a mail ingame! I've finished them all and it's one of the things in the game that I love to do. So don't by shy about asking! :D

    Nice to see your blog!

    - Aylinne

  2. It's very kind of you to leave such a detailed comment on my blog. I haven't blogged in a long time and it's great to see that what I write speaks to someone, regardless of whether we agree on everything.

    I understand your point of view on guilds, but for me, as someone who likes to settle down and focus on one thing at a time, I do enjoy the "seriousness" guilds are given in some other games I played, I liked how joining a guild was a big deal and all. Different perspective :)

    Again, thanks, I'll surely contact you in game when I'm on.