Gear Grind?

mortarI don’t get it.

I’ve been reading in a few places lately, about people who are upset with the obtaining of gear in WAR. In particular, the obtainment of PvP gear. If you’ll look back over my blogging history, you’ll see that I got my full Annihilator set in less than a month, Sentinel I got shortly after. My Darkpromise/Conqueror took a bit, but that’s not because I was having bad luck with drops, it was my inability to get into a group to do Lost Vale and the fact that my server rarely sees fortress captures. All of this was before the implementation of the token system. So what’s the problem?

People love to hate.

Players are feeling extra bummed out about the game for whatever their reason may be (valid or not) and so, they feel like their voice needs to get out there and get some type of movement going and make a change. This reasoning actually speaks highly of Mythic as I see it. Players and bloggers actually feel as if their voice can make a difference, and be responded to.

People can never be pleased.

How many different ways can players get PvP gear now? Boots and gloves both drop off of enemy players. Keep sieges now give 3 gold bags. Technically, there is a way to get someone who wins a green bag a gold bag through an exploit, so if you know what you’re doing, your chances have improved (as needed with 175 people attacking a keep) [aside: didn’t Mythic say they were going to implement a way to pass off gold bags to someone else?]. In a guild with a claimed keep when your realm locks the zone? Great, your guild leader just got a gold bag, make a case to him/her about why you need that bag to get another piece of gear. Tokens. These things seem to rain from the heavens for me. Participate in zone locks, help take those BOs/Keeps. You’ll get a crap-ton of officer medallions at the flip, a fat burst of renown, and a Conqueror Crest. Get organized, and play the campaign. This is on top of the medallions you’ll get from killing the enemy while you’re at it, and whatever you may get from bags. Oh, and once you have three pieces of annihilator (two drop off of players and are BoE, buy them on the AH!) you can go do the dungeons if you want instead. Seriously, how many options do you want?

People are unlucky.

I’m sorry, it just happens. You’re an unlucky soul. You don’t get tokens, you don’t get good contribution rolls, you’re rez timer runs out just before the BO flips, and forget about ever seeing your classes gear drop in an instance. If you are so unfortunate, stay away from Vegas, and I say, start working on your RvR influence so you can at least get some gear to do open field stuff in. Also, get in a guild and try to win some sympathy. Truth is, no one is that unlucky in my opinion.

People have the wrong perspective.

I hear left and right complaints about the “carrot on the stick”. The gear is the only thing enticing people to keep playing, and it’s a progression pinch is the general sentiment from the complaints I read. Well, then you’re looking at the game wrong. Too many players see the RvR as the means to get their gear. Once they get that gear they can… RvR more? The gear attainment should be looked at as a bonus for doing what you were doing anyway. Instead of thinking, “Man, I hope that Witch Elf drops me my boots!”, the thought process should be more like, “Killing that Witch Elf was awesome, and I got this awesome pair of boots too!”.

Mythic is partially to blame.

Too much reliance for the upper echelons of the PvP game are based around the wards. The drawbacks to not having the right wards for the right situation are too severe. If you don’t have the exact right wards for an encounter, you’re going to get decimated. Time and again the developers preached incremental increases, so why don’t the lower wards work in situations that require more powerful ones…only to a lesser degree. So for instance, you only have a full set of lesser wards (Annihilator), and you go into a city instance and fight the Lord at the second stage of the PQ. You now won’t get completely destroyed because you don’t have your superior wards (Conqueror), but you will hurt. Figure out a level of effectiveness that is acceptable (I’d say 50% for one level off) compared to a full suit of the correct wards, but let the effort of obtaining the lesser wards pay off as the campaign move further. Don’t completely cut people out of the late game because they don’t have the exact gear needed, just make it very compelling for them to get the stuff ASAP.

Anyway, that’s my take on it.

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9 Responses to Gear Grind?

  1. nazgum says:

    Thanks for the link and nice post =)

    You say you have your sentinal and dark promise gear, so how much conqueror and invader gear do you have by comparison, and what ratio of your time have you spent PvPing vs PvEing to obtain each? (ignoring the pieces you can buy from vendors)

    My grip is that, the PvP gear is far far more difficult to obtain then the PvE gear which it is supposed to be on par with. The game was advertised as you can get your gear doing what you like, whether that be PvE or PvP, yet that is not the case. Sentinal is far easier to obtain then Conqueror, and Dark Promise is far easier to obtain then Invader (which is currently impossible due to stage 1 not being completable with enemies)..

    As it stands it seems if I wish to upgrade my gear I need to go PvE, because the PvP route will not offer an upgrade, perhaps no matter how much time I invest.

  2. shadowwar says:

    Oh, I agree whole-heartedly that the PvE gear is easier to obtain than the PvP gear. Conqueror, I have two of. What should be kept in mind though, is that I have yet to see a successful fort take by order on my server. The PvP on Ironfist is so insanely well balanced, that fort pushes are still uncommon, and takes are somewhat rare. Invader I have absolutely none of, I’ve been in two city defenses, and none of the city attacks. There have been about 10 attacks on either of the cities combined.

  3. Snafzg says:

    Nice post, but of course, I don’t fully agree! 😉

    How am I looking at it wrong? I am looking at it the way Mythic is presenting it. When a dog is repeatedly given a treat for doing something a particular way, he becomes trained. It’s really no different in WAR. The only reward players are given for sacking keeps, forts, zones, and cities is gear.

    Is renown really a reward compared to the gear in WAR? That’s like giving your dog the choice between a piece of bacon and a piece of lettuce. An RR20 player in Sovereign gear is going to beat an RR80 player in rank 40 PQ gear hands down if player skill is equal.

    Keeping with the dog analogy, over time your pet isn’t repeating the task because it wants to or its fun. It is doing it for the reward. I don’t really see this as a bad analogy here. Most players really do play the game for the next treat.

    This is why I suggest reducing the grind and replacing the gear treat with the treat of diversity and additional options. Rathing than jumping on the gear treadmill they will jump on the alt treadmill.

    You say the experience should be reward enough and I agree with you. The problem is, when you put such an emphasis on gear and then make it a grindy treadmill, it confuses people. Let’s get away from the WoW model of mudflation and vertical expansion. There’s a reason we aren’t playing WoW! WAR was supposed to be the alternative…

  4. Xerb says:

    Eloquent, but I must disagree. How much of your gear was obtained prior to the token system going live and would you consider yourself a casual gamer or someone who plays nightly for hours on end? Considering the number of gripes from people who have had no luck getting even PVE gear to drop let alone winning the roll, I’d say you are more of an anomaly than a standard to measure by.

    I have been playing nightly since the release of this new token system and I have received 19 officer tokens and 2 Invader tokens. Considering this is after a couple weeks work in RVR, I’d say I will see my first piece of gear purchased with tokens by Christmas … maybe. I can’t say that these things haven’t been dropping like crazy, but I have zero luck with the rolls. Piss poor luck actually!

    I have never had luck with drops and when I share the drops with a warband it doesn’t help my odds. Also, you’re basing your opinion on whether your side of the server is offensive or defensive. I have yet to see a token after a keep, fortress, BO or Zone defense. So, if you are the unlucky SOB that gets stuck on the receiving end of a continuous butt kicking you will have to rely on single combat RVR kills as your means of token collection. Now combine all of this AND play casually (4 hours a day or less) and your luck goes down the toilet. My server seems to be dealing with this problem with illegal, cross-realming duels via IRC in Eataine.

    If the outcry is so bad, maybe, just maybe, there really is a problem with this system. Even Mythic has acknowledged it needs some work. Hopefully they get it figured out soon.

  5. shadowwar says:

    I won’t disagree it could use some tweaking, and I won’t disagree that there is too much emphasis on gear, or more accurately, on the wards. I said as much 😉

    @Xerb:
    All of my gear was obtained before tokens. I haven’t gotten any gear since it was released. I currently have ~150 officer medalions, 5 invader crests, and 1 warlord crest. I play semi-hardcore (~2-4 hours M-F, and 3-7 hours Sat-Sun). So maybe I am lucky, or I just happen to be there when I need to be. Also, as I told Nazgum, my server rarely sees fortress captures, and has 10 or less city assaults TOTAL.

  6. brikkhowz says:

    the problem I have with tokens is u don’t get enough. I leveled 1-20 solely doing RVR and still didn’t get enough for even 1 piece of gear, not to mention a set. I’m not hateing I love war, but I can’t for see me ever getting enough tokens to get a set of RVR gear.

  7. shadowwar says:

    @Brikkhowz
    How much did you get exactly? How often did zones get locked? I’m curious, as I have yet to play a character in the lower tiers since the tokens were released.

  8. Eyeball says:

    It was also easier to get gear if you were one of the first few to 40. There weren’t warbands showing up to keeps so you basically rolled against maybe 12 people. You also think of the addition of kotbs, and slayer classes since release which now throws their gear into the mix dropping off bosses in the city dungeons, and LV.

  9. Kash says:

    Nice post. Prettymuch hits the nail on the head. I’ve been saying for a long time that the gear in this game is easier to get than any MMO I’ve played and theres no ret paladin rolling on my warrior shoulders!

    I also disagree with Snafzg. While some people are in it for the gear only, considering my server still has an active destruction population that hardly ever caps forts/cities (long story) I’d have to say “most” of destro are in it for something other than “treats” (we are lucky the server activity is approx 50/50).

    Now Im not saying Mythic are not partly to blame but I’m laying the bulk of the blame on players.

    Mythic: Yeah wheres that pass on gold bag option you said you were doing?!

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