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Tuesday, 27 November 2012

[GW2] Moving Forward from "When it's Ready"

Before the release ANet's philosophy was always "When it's ready". They would never even show us content until they were absolutely sure that it was ready to ship, that's why we didn't see the sylvari for ages, and we learned about each of the professions with, usually, a few months in between each reveal.

But, during the recent AMA (Ask Me Anything) thread hosted by Chris Whiteside (Studio Design Director at ANet) Chris has admitted that:

"Personally i feel that aspects of the game ARE too grindy and we are working through these areas to correct our overall direction moving forward as well as taking some of our current progression systems and rewiring them for want of a better term for example different methods of acquisition related to the way different players like to play their content. 

 To be frank the ascended gear was designed to be earn able outside of the FotM and unfortunately we were unable to deploy this prior to the update. This (i hope) will not happen again"
(permalink)

What happened to "When it's ready"? If Ascended items were designed to be earned outside of the Fractals of the Mists then surely they should have been shipped to be earned outside of the Fractals of the Mists. Otherwise, you aren't going to please anyone: the horizontal progressioners will be angry you've gone back on your promise not to add a "gear grind", and the vertical progressioners will be disappointed that the progression is so flimsy and requires hours of grind over the same few instances.

Did ANet panic as the dreaded 3-month threshold loomed?

ps. Also, for the love of all that is holy - stop using the phrase "Moving forward": it absolutely smacks of business speak which I think you should always avoid when talking to plebs like us.

EDIT: Just going through the summary of last night on this page and came across this relevant piece of info:


Q: I am impressed you are participating in this for so long. I commend you.
Two questions: -If Ascended Gear and the Fractal of the Mist leveling system was not rolled out in the way you intended(being that theres only one way currently to obtain the gear, and the leveling system fragments the playerbase), why was it rolled out in the first place? I thought Arenanet was big on "When its ready", however this sounds like it was not ready but rushed out the door.
-Ive seen, and agree with, some posts concerning the aesthetic look of Medium gear compared to Light and ultimately Heavy(which looks the best hands down). Honestly, medium gear while leveling is terrible looking and there are only a small number of dungeon sets that you dont look like a pirate or something from MechWarrior. Are there plans to specifically overhaul the MEDIUM armor looks?
A: If you don't mind i will just answer the first question as the second is something that would be discussed at work. And thanks for taking the time to submit the questions.
So in regard to question 1: We had/have a plan to seed ascended through the game. It affects many many areas and systems and we wanted to essentially rewire aspects of reward progression. This is an ongoing priority. However this is a multi phase plan and during the creation of the FotM I wanted to roll out a subset of the plan to the community. The progression/reward system was not correctly deployed but the Dungeon was, at least in my opinion as i think the guys have done an amazing job. The reward system that was rolled out was also not 'as designed' due to some dependencies in other areas of the game. I made the decision to continue with the roll out and here we are today.
This is my responsibility, it was a bad call, but i have to say that whilst this could of been handled better i am still truly excited for what the future will bring and i wouldn't be doing this job if i didn't want to learn from extreme challenges and work with amazing people.
I very much appreciate the chance to connect with everyone not just in regard to this issue but the game as a whole. I am hoping to do this once a month with more team members and keep up more meaningful communication channels.
I hope this answers your question, going into anymore detail would take time away from answering other questions.

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