[GW2] Tired of Trinity Whining. Or: As if!

So, the third and final GW2 beta weekend has ended and we could all be talking about how wonderfully achieved a race the Asura are, how Metrica Province or Rata Sum rock as zones or alternatively, how the Sylvari despite many initial misgivings, succeed at being a little more than just another translation of elf. I know – I was shocked too.

….Or we could do none of that. Instead, we could go on and whine about the missing roles and damned trinity in Guild Wars 2. Yeah we could keep bringing that up, again and again and again, like an obnoxious guest asking for burgers in an Italian restaurant. Some days I honestly feel with game designers and it’s not like I haven’t been an ardent critic of MMOs myself over the years. Three public betas past, I keep reading the same ignorant moping and fallacies by a vocal crowd of circus clowns on ANet’s official forums. The fact that many of them are drawing comparisons to WoW of all games, makes the whole thing all the more amusing, complete eyeroll that it is otherwise!

So, just for shits and giggles and because I feel like whining about whiners today, let’s have a look at some of the most missing-the-point, lalala-pink-pokémon-glasses and I-just-like-to-complain-about-something arguments! Here’s what the broken pro-trinity record has to say about GW2’s gameplay, roughly summarized:

a) No holy trinity means there is no cooperation anymore! *GASP*
b) No holy trinity means people do not coordinate / communicate in groups!
c) No holy trinity means zerg-mode and needing no strategy!
d) No holy trinity means there can’t be difficult combat!

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There’s variations of the above, but it’s what whiners basically claim while glorifying WoW and prophesying the doom of GW2…already. Of course the holy trinity in itself has no direct bearing on any of the criticized points, however to realize that one needs to have a hard look at WoW – which is what I will do since people insist on bringing it up as role model. Note too, the big majority of whiny commenters refer to overall combat/cooperation in GW2, meaning questing and the FFA dynamic events. Precious few can currently claim group play experience beyond that or more in-depth knowledge about coordination in dungeons (especially exploration mode) or organized PvP. Here’s my reply to the popular arguments, since “wait and see?” didn’t really go far these previous betas –

As IF!

First off, as IF people communicated or cooperated much during questing in WoW! Where have you been the past 8 years? You can’t be referring to the WoW I have played. Some well-known, honest facts:

  • 95% of all WoW players either solo quests or take their friends/guildies along. You don’t need any type of “strategy” to beat quests together, joining up is more about the social factor. There aren’t even many elite outdoor quests anymore or bosses that would require a group to beat. People don’t need to communicate and there’s nothing to coordinate when everyone already knows what their role is. Oh, and people don’t coordinate, let alone communicate in most LFG 5man runs either – but then you knew that already.
  • If “actively creating the party”, which usually comes down to clicking an invite button and waiting for the other side to accept it, equals good communication among strangers…well, you’re an easy one to satisfy!
  • You can progress with ease in WoW pushing the same 3-4 buttons, just in case anyone feels like bringing this up against GW2. Not that the “amount of buttons” is a great or very telling argument for or against anything, really…
  • If “zerging” equals “rushing into combat without the need for communication or coordination”, then zerging is what’s constantly being done in WoW, during questing and even 5man runs. Just because tanks tank, healers heal and DPS deal damage, doesn’t mean people are actively cooperating (or need wait on the tank for example) – rather, I would call it playing side by side, each role knowing their motions. There are synergies and there’s timing, both exist in GW2 as well. The holy trinity sees to that; it creates a basic order so players won’t have to think about assigning jobs or tactics much (outside raids) themselves. That’s hardly active cooperation or communication though – it’s a script! In fact the opposite, a free and versatile setup, requires strangers to coordinate and talk more if at all!

But hey, I’ll give you that – due to the lack of pre-defined roles, the combat in GW2 feels more chaotic, certainly is for quests and events. But errr…so what? Already I cooperate more in GW2 than I ever did in WoW: thanks to the FFA, auto-join events I have joined and helped out more strangers than I ever did while questing in WoW. I’ve had a chat with a few who shared a quest spot with me and several whom I rezzed or rezzed me in return (fat chance on that in WoW). I don’t claim any of this was particularly coordinated or difficult (maybe the events aren’t supposed to be particularly difficult, anyone?), but at least it’s a change from the usual silent, solo routine I used to have in WoW. Plus, where more people group up there’s always an unpredictable element. It’s a little cynical to criticize auto-join grouping or lack of roles when the opposite did nothing at all to improve matters in the past. As for kill stealing, mob camping and loot rolling – needless to say I haven’t missed them one second! That’s when having less communication is actually a good thing (/ninja /doom /ragequit).

The real strategic and demanding encounters aren’t out there in quests or trivial group content – not in WoW and not in GW2. Quests and events are simply not very hard right now and things like cooperation and coordination live and grow under duress. I would claim that GW2 requires teamwork and strategy where it matters, just like WoW does too; in harder/heroic dungeon modes and in big scale raids or PvP/WvW. If you think it’s all a zerg there you are mistaken. You need strategy and communication to bring the trophy home, to win against opposing teams or survive tough encounters. Teamwork is very much alive even if it works differently in GW2. Plus, the game adds other tactical components, such as the whole dodge/positioning mechanics and making use of the environment. I’ve beat several tougher challenges myself only because of active movement and tactical positioning which is rather great considering I play a caster in GW2 (typical feet-of-stone classes in other MMOs).

Getting facts and questions straight

Now, this post is no attempt to discourage any well-founded critique in favor of the holy trinity (ya rly); in fact, there are a few very interesting questions one could ask about GW2 in this context. For example how different group mechanics will truly be in a well-organized party, during a difficult run that requires a lot of communication. Once players assign roles/tasks in order to succeed and hence end up specializing, would we have to admit to a “soft trinity” in GW2? And where are the differences then to let’s say WoW or Rift? I can see a few but it’s definitely a valid overall question. So would be the question about how well control mechanics are realized in the game and if they make for enough encounter variety, in lieu of things like classic threat and mitigation mechanics.

Then, there’s simply those players who love to tank or heal and I certainly empathize with that – after all I used to love to heal myself! If you miss the holy trinity on that note, I have neither reproach nor consolation to offer because GW2 is a different game. And just like the F2P vs. subscription horse can be kicked to death, what it really comes down to here is preferences and target audience.

If you were however, like the individuals I addressed further up, to move the holy trinity on a pedestal for all the wrong, uninformed reasons, drawing faulty comparisons and even faultier conclusions about GW’s and MMO combat in general, then you have me for a very impatient and frankly ill-tempered commenter these days. I am really sick and tired of half-assed, destructive discourse that is so easy to refute it’s an intellectual insult. My biggest, returning gripe is mixing up role restrictions with things like encounter difficulty or pacing. Or in other words: if role restrictions are the one thing that makes your fights “hard” (likely because you already can’t find the right group composition…/sarcasm) that is sad news indeed!

The holy trinity creates no more or less demanding encounters than a non-trinity model would; all it does is enable patterns and offer mechanics to utilize in (boss-)encounters. And it tells players what their role is right away (hence the often referred to “crutch”). You can like that or not, that’s your prerogative – but the trinity does absolutely not just magically create better, active cooperation, coordination or communication…or alternatively other random words that start with “C”. And where one player sees ordered combat thanks to the trinity, I see boring same-ish strategies and synchronized swimming! Preferences – pros and cons, ya feel me?

To close, and so I can return to more pleasant topics tomorrow (with pictures!), let’s say it once more with feeling: The holy trinity does not a cooperation make. The holy trinity does not a communication make. The holy trinity does not a coordination make. The holy trinity does not an encounter’s difficulty make. If ever in doubt – go play World of Warcraft. Thanks!

31 comments

  1. Hmm, I think the problem is that a lot of players recognise that the holy trinity is a form of teamwork – they are just so used to it that they can’t think of anything ELSE as being teamwork.

    At first, it was a solution to the tactical problem of how to fight mobs in earlier games – it makes life easier for the healers if they only have to focus on one target (and ideally a target that’s as easy to keep healed as possible) while the people dishing out the hurt focus on just doing that. Over the years, as players have used this tactic and asked for devs to support their playstyle, the roles have evolved and hardened, with tanks getting more and more aggro control and DPS classes becoming more specialised as glass cannon. Back in DAoC, my Blademaster was a damage dealer who could in a pinch hold aggro and stand toe to toe, although the Druids healing would refer to me as a “mana sponge”. My Warrior in Rift doesn’t have that option – you can’t even think about tanking unless you are in a fully tank-centric build and gear.

    What GW2 has done is take away all of the tools given to support the holy trinity tactic. That doesn’t mean no tactics – it means players need to get used to different tactics instead, probably more along the lines of tag-team wrestling or comicbook superhero fights where if one hero gets knocked down by a villain his teammates step in and draw fire while her recovers.

    And while it’ll be a few days before I have time to write up my adventures over the weekend, I have to say: Asura. Engineer. With a flamethrower. I may have to rethink the whole Norn Warrior thing!

    1. Aye – it’s a form of teamwork in the sense that it creates co-dependencies that enforce teamwork. you need co-dependency for player cooperation (or people won’t group up), but there are different ways to establish this. roles are one way, not the only way. granted, they open up a toolset to create different and complex encounters; but by the same virtue they also create issues, first and foremost repetitiveness and setup headaches. there ARE other ways to design interesting combat and other games and genres are doing it.
      one of the aspects that also brought the whole tank-healer equation up was simply “big boss hits /damage”; control can replace the whole idea of ever taking such hits and needing a soaker / tank. or as ANet said 1-2 years ago: healing is (should be) only the very last part of support!

      and LOL@Asura engineer! :D I am SO rolling an Asura engi alt myself – that race is just made for the job! I am tempted to even choose one for my main Elem….but I like the tall Norn too (plus consider epic armor look on shorties!) hehe.

    2. By the way, in discussions such as these I keep thinking of your blog post on why GW2 needs to succeed in order for the genre to progress; and then I feel super depressed because of people in forums writing stuff like that…..even if they’re argumentatively wrong (or uninformed) they’re still customers and can take their money wherever they like. which affects me too, damnit! :/

    3. Yeah, even after the roles were hardened in WoW some DPS classes could still tank or heal in a pinch, such as the Ret Pally. Cata, however, eliminated that option entirely, and I simply don’t see WoW ever returning to a switch-roles-on-the-fly environment.

    4. @Anonymous – completely off topic, I wish that someone at my current job would be fired for buying Cisco. Their data networks stuff may be fine, but their call centre solution is, in GW2 terms, built by skritt.

      Back on topic, WoW has as many tools for cooperating with other players as older games in terms of buffs and rezzes, but it has a culture that doesn’t encourage doing so. The largest group WoW players seem to show any loyalty to is their guild, and screw everyone else. In fact, in many cases they’ll cheerfully screw their guild too if they get a better offer from another, leeter guild. I’m not entirely sure why WoW players show less community cooperation than we saw in EQ and DAoC… Best guess is the game presents a less harsh levelling environment so players don’t need to work together, whereas lone wolves in older games had a pretty thin time of it.

  2. When I was reading those posts in the official beta forums yesterday I had the same feelings. All I could think of was “Wait, are we playing the same game?”. Really, I just don’t get it. My experiences have been pretty similar to yours so I really don’t know where all the whine is coming from.

    During all the betas I just kept trying to help people in any way I could. Either by killing the same mobs, giving out whatever buffs I could or resurrecting people as needed. Heck, some times I would just go out of my way to resurrect people. The best part for me, as a soloist, is that I could do it without feeling like I was committing myself to a stranger whose company I could or could not enjoy. I just quietly helped then once we were done we would each go our separate ways. No hassle inviting people, worrying about loot rolls or anything about that. And as contradictory as it may sound, that made me care more about the people around me than when I am forced into a group.

    Ok. I better stop at here otherwise I will ramble all day about it. So, to finish it off all I say is that I agree with you in all points. :)

    1. I’ve not played it, but I second your comments. It’s my experience that if I’m helping people voluntarily just because I can, I do it more often and more cheerfully than if I have to play with other players just to see things or get things I can’t on my own.

    2. “…that made me care more about the people around me than when I am forced into a group.”

      that is sooo interesting! and kinda obvious if you think about it – of course interaction is more frequent / better if people can choose to help each other more spontaneously, randomly and briefly than having to commit to the whole partying-up ritual which usually comes with a “time spent duty” and more small implications like that.

      I also really love how you fight together rather than against each other, especially considering mob tagging or loot distribution. group looting has a social component that “could” be interesting, but I’ve simply given up on the system in MMOs; too much human failure.

    3. Agreed. I think that may be exactly why I am so in love with Guild Wars 2. There is very little barriers for people to help each other. The end result is people just tend to naturally do that. It doesn’t need a holy trinity to get people to work together. It just happens if the game makes it as easier as possible and ensuring all parties involved get rewarded by it in some way.

      And I do think the holy trinity would get in the way of that as you would have to figure who is tanking, who is healing, if your DPS is being high enough to not being a dead weight, etc.

      With the Guild Wars 2 system you can just get into the action and try to help in any way you can. Be it with just attacking stuff, trying to use your skills to perform combo, buff nearby allies or even something as simple as resurrecting somebody else.

  3. Have you read or seen anything from anyone who has actually done some Dungeon content in GW2? I haven’t but I’d be interested to hear how it went because I frequently felt the lack of real healing options during events and I’m finding it hard to imagine how five people would get through content that’s apparently much more challenging using the tools on offer.

    As far as open-world events go, I did manage to find some pretty tough ones where the relative lack of established, familiar roles, particularly dedicated tanks and healers, appeared to be causing problems. There’s a fort in Plains of Ashford that regularly gets taken over by a Giant. He’s very, very tough for that area and it takes the concerted effort of many players to evict him.

    I saw many attempts fail and one succeed. That one was extremely inelegant, kind of a mass-kiting. There were a large number of deaths, very little organization and in the end nothing got him down other than weight of numbers. There were frequent requests for healing from melee characters who were taking the brunt of his very considerable damage, requests that mostly went unheeded.

    I thought about healing but I couldn’t see how I could meaningfully do it. The heals I have work fine on solo content and work fine as self-heals when I’m in the hurly-burly of an event, but how they can be applied to a third-party as more than the equivalent of patch healing at best I have yet to determine.

    The Trinity may not be the best scaffold to design this stuff around but I’ll need to see more evidence than I’ve seen so far to be convinced that giving everyone a single healing ability is a good alternative.

    1. It’s a good question; obviously most of us can’t really comment on upper level dungeon difficulty or group coordination. from what I’ve seen on youtube though (there were several dungeon runs by TB I watched early on), it seems like a tough challenge given the lower overall healing and mitigation abilities, to a point where I could imagine that the requirements on stuff like quick reflexes, positioning, control coordination etc. gets too hard for the average group. Personally I’d love to see this, but there’s no doubt in my mind the nerfbat wouldn’t be far off. from all the vids I’ve watched so far punishment was certainly there. coordination I can’t judge but it certainly wasn’t a zerg on bosses & packs.

      Funny you mention the giant :) we killed him after assembling 15 or so people and I actually liked that he was so hard and people were so clueless at first lol. I managed to find my tactic, playing with LoS and using certain abilities. I think the lack of control at first and people dying was simply everyone being noobs, myself included.
      I made another telling experience on a similar elite boss high up north in the Norn starter map: I ended up killing him twice with 20 or so folks every time and the two kills couldn’t have been more different. the first took 20mins and I kept thinking “wtf this sucks”…turns out the second time he died in 5minutes and was constantly controlled by melee up front which simply never happened the first time around (where he erratically zerged people all over the place). this is also when I started choosing more appropriate spells for slowing etc.

      this is kinda how I see the combat right now….there’s much to learn still for everybody in terms of coordination and I really don’t think reverting to old ways and asking for healing will be the tactic or solution for most fights. or I will be disappointed :) if they realize one heal isn’t enough I’d rather see them tune aspects like difficulty / damage taken or control mechanics.

    2. “There were frequent requests for healing from melee characters who were taking the brunt of his very considerable damage, requests that mostly went unheeded.”

      There are no targetable heals in GW2, that’s why. People can drop aoe regen/heal effects but the ‘tanks’ would have to be aware enough to move within range of them.

    3. yep – it’s actually not always so simple to place the AoE heals correctly when people are moving constantly. then, there’s also the range issue if you’re more likely to stand far back and are mobile yourself.
      TBH I never even used any healing spells besides my self-heal and I don’t intend to! :P

  4. I’m really not sure what game you play but I’ve never not passed out buffs or rezzed a player in WoW or Rift. That part of the experience is all about you and not about the game mechanics.

    On the trinity, this sounds a lot like the debates that raged on the SW:ToR forums in the days that BioWare insisted that they would not have the trinity. Then it was modified to “classes can have multiple roles, so it’s not a trinity!” I think they were the only people impressed by that logic. I’ll repeat the core of the argument from those debates. You need the trinity if your game:

    – Uses the ‘big mob’ model for raids or instances, and
    – The big mob can do significant chunks of damage to the average player in a single hit.

    Once both of those are true you need to have tanks and healers. The third leg can be control, it can be buff/debuff, etc. Damage is the WoW (and Rift, and SW:ToR…) solution but it doesn’t have to be that way. The key to the concept is that there is a player who soaks damage and player who heals (or mitigates) damage.

    From what I’ve seen of the classes in GW 2 there are some that can go defensive and some that can focus on healing. Change the weapons, change the focus (not sure on what they call this, Elementalists going water instead of fire type thing) and you are now basically inhabiting a tank or healer role. It doesn’t matter if you get there by refitting your set or if that is the full-time job of your class, the end result is two legs of the trinity.

    In full fairness I’ve not seen the instance design for GW 2. They may have gone a different path, where the run doesn’t end at the final boss who eats 40% of your health each hit. If so, that’s great. I’d love to see a game that doesn’t go to the same well.

    1. Anonymous – the ‘big boss’ that can one-shot non-tanks is more a dev response to the holy trinity than something that necessitates it. It’s designed to make tanks feel important, and healers feel important in keeping the tank alive.

      Now replace that boss with one that does a lot of AoE attacks that may not do as much damage per player, but force everyone to trade off between engaging and pulling out to heal (or at least dodging when required), and need the guys in close to trade off being the brunt of the bad guy’s attention. Everyone’s a damage dealer, multiple players have to take their turn in the pain barrel, and all are bringing whatever else they have to the party be it buffs, debuffs, crowd control or combo attacks with other players.

    2. “I’ve never not passed out buffs or rezzed a player in WoW or Rift. That part of the experience is all about you and not about the game mechanics.”

      I don’t deny that for the individual; but the chance to get rezzed in WoW for example is also simply up to the number of classes that can actually rez and then other factors such as punishment of death, proximity of rez points, incentive / rewards for rezzing and all of these minus all those players who simply aren’t up to rez much.

      Rezzing in GW2 gets a new meaning because everyone can do it, do it mid-combat even and then there’s also the reward aspect.
      WoW had very little in terms of inspiring rezzes; not everyone could rez, self-rez was easy, there were no punishment and no incentive to rez besides being a good pal. all of that lead to players generally not expecting to get rezzed by strangers while questing on their own. that chance is highly increased in GW2 and thus also increases the potential of social interaction – be it simply a thankful wave among strangers.

    3. I’ve always buffed or rezzed people in other games too, if I could. The thing however is that the only way I could that is if I would play the few classes who could do that. If I was playing a warrior-like class, as I often then do, then tough lucky. There would be very little, if anything, I could to help some random stranger without taking my time to party up with them and tanking/DPSing for them.

      Even if I would do that we would have to figure out if we were in the same step for the quest, hope it isn’t one of those dreaded quests where the quest will only update for one person at a time (they still exist in some MMORPGs) and so on, so forth.

      If people die then? Well, again, tough luck. A lot of the MMORPGs I played only give the resurrection option to healers. The only MMORPG from the top of my mind that allows you to buy a resurrection item to use on other people without requiring a cash shop is Lineage 2. And even then there are certain complications with that. Granted, I haven’t played WoW in years and I barely played Rifts. So I don’t know how that stands with them now.

      Bottom line is, it always felt frustrating to me that the only way I could help other people would often be heavily dependent on my class and grouping up with them.

      With Guild Wars 2 I just can help in a lot of ways, with any class. The simplest being just helping killing the mob or resurrecting another player. The most complex being figuring out what of my skills would be most useful for that fight or would generate the best combos with the people around me. And outside dungeons, grouping becomes something optional to do that.

    4. I played a Rogue in WoW, and I never ressed or buffed anyone, in fact I think I had only one passive buff in one talent tree that buffed other people, and I certainly didn’t have any resses. All in all, I just minded my own business when I wasn’t raiding, and it was boring as hell.

      Just because you have a big mob that can take most of your health in one hit, it doesn’t mean you NEED the trinity, sure the trinity is the easy solution, the GW2 is the fun and interesting solution, where you actually have to think for yourself and react to what that big mob is doing, and you can’t just stand there taking stomp after stomp from the huge dragon (anyone else ever found this part of old MMOs ridiculous, that a little hero can just stand there eating a dragon’s stomp, one after the other?)

      And while it is true that some professions in GW2 can take on a more defensive role, or a more healing role, they don’t come anywhere near something where the defensive build lets you just stand there for more than 2 or 3 hits, and the healing won’t ever be enough to save that, the healing an elementalist fx. can provide is merely a little buffer to the party, nothing more.

      About the dungeons, in fact many of the bosses shown so far can one shot any character in the party, so you gotta stay on your toes, which is nice.

    5. What version of WoW are you playing? The last time I saw people regularly giving out buffs to adventurers they passed in WoW was in mid-Wrath. Nowadays you’re more likely to have someone ‘/point /laugh’ while you die to a mob out in Azeroth as you are to get a buff from them. If you can actually find someone out there in Azeroth and not attached to a capital city, that is.

      With WoW, the revamped old world is practically impossible to die in anyway unless you’re doing something completely stupid like pulling half of the Eastern Plaguelands at once. It’s only when you get to Outland and meet the Fel Reaver that you seriously have to start keeping an eye out for dying in the PvE servers. At that point you begin to actually care about being rezzed while questing, but it’s also likely that nobody will be nearby to rez you either.

      (PvP servers are different, and they do inspire more faction loyalty for certain. Most of the free rezzes that I ever got in WoW were on PvP servers for after having been ganked by some random max level Rogue or DK.)

      Holding up WoW as a paragon of cooperation misses the larger issue that WoW hasn’t encouraged cooperation outside of the guild or raid for a long time. The LFD queue enables anti-social behavior with idiots who think they’ll never see these people ever again, and the nerd raging in BGs shows that there are a lot of players who still need time outs. WoW is nowhere near a free-for-all as, say, EVE Online, but it’s also not exactly close to LOTRO and TOR, either.

    6. Speaking as someone who started playing before the quest to open AQ began I can safely say that WoW is not, never was, a ‘paragon of cooperation’. It was never as bad as GW1 or AoC but it was also never close to LotRO (at least pre-FTP, I’ve no idea now). WoW does what it does, and it does that tolerably well. In my professional life we have a saying, stolen from an earlier one about IBM, that no one was ever fired for buying Cisco. That’s about where WoW is; it’s reliable and a bit boring but it does the job. And, running on a Paladin, I still rez and buff people at random. Yes, you can be on class that can’t do that, I’m mostly a DK, but if I have it, I use it.

      TSW uses a ground-effect system that gives you fair warning that a large attack is incoming, time to dodge. It still needs a trinity because the boss does enough damage in normal attacks that you need a damage-sponge and a healer. I managed to heal a group through half of Polaris, the first instance, without a tank. The pent-ultimate boss just shredded the DPS faster than I could heal. And that was with them doing a good job of pulling the adds off me.

      I would love to see a game that gets around this and permits players to run what they want in any combination. I’m not interested in a game where the boss fight sequence is:

      – Get the threat lead,
      – Dodge some telegraphed attacks but,
      – Get killed in 3-4 normal hits,
      – Threat lead shifts to next on list,
      – Get rezzed,
      – Rinse and repeat.

      If GW2 manages to solve this design problem, hats-off to them. I’m not convinced that they will and I’m even less convinced that they are really concerned with the PvE game.

    7. @Redbeard

      lol@EPL pull ;)

      “WoW hasn’t encouraged cooperation outside of the guild or raid for a long time.”

      this. it’s odd how some player criticize how GW2 incentivizes cooperation and then name WoW as alternative….wut? obviously you need to give the majority of players SOME reason to group up and help each other out! now a game can manage this two ways – by being hard/unbalanced to a point where there’s simply no soloing for many things OR in a case like WoW (that is such a polished solo ride) where you absolutely MUST create incentives by other means. it’s bizarre how they don’t get the connection there. it’s one or the other, make your mind up!

    8. @Anonymous–

      That you actually buff people while out and about is a great thing, but it is by far the exception rather than the rule. Part of that is because nobody levels by questing in Azeroth anymore –my Ret Pally still sees more people in the Firelands daily than he saw throughout all of Outland when he was working on Loremaster– but part of that is because people just aren’t doing it. It’s been a long time since I’ve come back from getting a cup of coffee and finding an extra buff on one of my WoW toons, even in a busy place like the Firelands.

    9. *sigh* I hate the commenting system, I had a post written but clicked something by mistake and when I went back to the page, it was lost. It apparently messes up with Opera’s ability so remember the half-filled forms. :-(

      The big mob a.k.a. one vs many model is not related to trinity and used to exist in pre-trinity games. I wish that there was a developer who wants to try something else than this model too.

      As for people complaining about GW2’s role system, I think it’s too early for that. It’s OK to be reserved about it but I think we all shall see how it proves (or doesn’t) itself.

  5. All I can say is: I feel your pain when dealing with people who condemn everything that isn’t exactly as they imagined and are very loud about it. ;P

    1. More positivity, please! :)
      no seriously, I am not even against haters or hypers, but one needs to have some timing (hellou beta) and rational train of thought / ability to articulate logical points at least….also, I don’t get why you pick a game that makes a big deal about not having a trinity and then complain that it should have a trinity! /facepalm
      it’s one thing to want your wishes fulfilled, but to expect that *everyone* has to fulfill them is just a tad illusory.

  6. “No holy trinity means there can’t be difficult combat!” Clearly these people are all leveling in WoW as resto druids and holy priests. /tongueincheek

    Personally, I like more well-rounded abilities. I haven’t played GW2 yet but I’m looking forward to it.

  7. I love wow and will continue play but I also thought the GW 2 beta was awesome!

    However I don’t think anyone can intelligently discuss the GW2 instances and techniques therein as so few people have experienced them. So the trinity qq is just silly at this point.

    To be honest GW2 is pretty much a solo game for the first 10-20 levels – you can group but it is neither helpful or necessary.

    Once we get into the instances, we can see how they work and I hope that they are a great experience but at the end of the day there are only 8 unique instances (I believe) so not a huge part of the game at this point.

    1. It’s true you don’t really need other people from 10-20, but you play alongside them nonetheless, and it makes the gaming experience more fun and more alive.
      And in WoW you play alone from 1-84 (or whatever the lvl cap is now) except for when you join a random daily dungeon to get your badges/gear/whatever.

      And yes, there are 8 dungeons, but all have 1 story mode and at least 3 explorable modes (if I remember correctly), which all have a few random encounters along the way. So all in all more than 32 different experiences.

    2. Personally I like that there’s ‘only’ those 8 dungeons with indeed different modes. interesting runs are about quality, not quantity; having 50 dungeons doesn’t mean you’ll necessarily have fun in there either…
      we’ll see what GW2 does in there ofc, but I am not worried about a number. that would be as silly as counting how many skills are on the hotbar. ;)

  8. I hope you are right and it becomes more compelling, but it just didn’t hook me in beta and really did seem to match most of the criticisms you’re dismissing.

    What makes me concerned more than anything is the things that should make GW2 combat more compelling don’t seem to work very well. I remember how hard it was to get an entire party to “all press red” for the combos in LOTRO, I can’t imagine GW2’s skill combos are going to work for all but very organized and pre-planned static groups. That would be where the interclass synergy comes from, but it seems more of a random happening than something you can make part of a strategy.

    The dodge mechanic also doesn’t seem to work well either and the result I’m seeing already is a migration to ranged specs. They should look at TSW where with a bit more time to react, clearer AOE marking, and less overall effects spam, the mechanic works quite well.

    FWIW I don’t like WoW and never have. I want to like GW2 very very much, but so far… Well I spent last weekend playing TSW.

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