tanithryudo: (Gods at Play)
[personal profile] tanithryudo
The first demo weekend just finished. That demo covered just a preview of the PvE map content for PoF, mainly focused on showing off the new area and the mount system. None of the new class specializations were available; apparently, they're showcasing those separately in the next demo. Because of that, I didn't play all that exhaustively. But from what I did play, here's some thoughts...


Mounts:

Only got to try out the raptor mount in the demo, but from what I've seen so far it's pretty good. The speed buff feels like somewhere between 33-50% range, so swiftness+ but not overpowered over gliding 3 or certain mobility-spamming classes. The basic leap skill costs endurance to use, which is fair, and it can be double-bound to the same key for dodging so I don't have to expend endurance for every hop and skip. The transition on mounting/dismounting is pretty smooth (though I wish they didn't automatically dismount you when talking to NPCs or harvesting nodes).

In general it seems to be a well made and polished mechanic. The overwhelming response to it on the forums/reddit has been positive (even for many people who hated the idea of mounts in GW originally).

Map design:

The area that we got to see in the demo has been pretty flat. Layout is maybe somewhere between Dry Top and Silverwastes (without the underground jumping puzzle), though with a lot more level ground area. Definitely a lot of room to run around (built around the raptor, maybe?). What verticality there is to the area is more on the order of climbing buildings and mountain walls for one or two one-time challenge points (similar to DT/SW), than required pathing like the HoT maps.

The actual design is pretty well done, a mix of Vabbi-esque towns and Dry Top-esque desert-land. Critters and raptors are all new and well made in looks. Love the design of the land sharks, the desert snakes, and the hydras from GW1.

Map mechanics:

Definitely seems to be more like LS3 than HoT maps. That is, with daily hearts and standalone/triggerable dynamic events rather than a map-based meta. Good in that it wouldn't require you to have to pre-schedule the play session around the zones (and struggle to get into a group up to 30 mins before the meta event starts *coughTDcough*). May possibly be an issue with repetitiveness and long term viability, but I guess the judge is still out on that until we see the full heart vendor rewards / zone rewards system.

Rewards:

What we did see of rewards seems to be heavily weighted toward mats. The chests littering the zone all drop mats, and you roll to see what mats you get, anywhere from orichalcum ingots to T2-T5 leather sections. The heart vendor also lets you buy up to 3 of these caches of your choice per day (as in, you can to choose a leather cache or a cloth cache or an ingot cache, etc.)

I don't know if the amounts dropped will be the same at release as it is in the demo, but if it is, this expansion is going to be a huge source of T2-T5 mats of all kinds. Good for crafting ascended, I suppose, though I wonder if it means keeping a lowbie to open bags would still be optimal anymore at that point... (I also didn't see reports of T6 leather drops. Hopefully that's just RNG and it's still on the drop list/cache list, or there's still going to be a bottleneck there for medium armored characters.)

The other new mechanic is unidentified gear. It seems they're given out as event rewards, along side regular drops which are still directly gear. The un'id gear can be directly salvaged without worrying about runes/sigils cluttering things up, or they can be identified at the heart vendor for a price (in silver/map currency). The ID'ing also takes into account magic find, so I guess the system is intended so that newer players without much MF will either directly salvage or sell these items on the TP. While players with higher MF will buy them on the TP and get more rare ID's out of them, and then either resell the items back on the TP or salvage for ectos. Whether and how that works out will need to wait til the markets balance out after all the changes from the expansion hits.

Anyway, with all the changes, there's probably going to be some major market fluctuations after the expansion release. Hopefully better for buyers; we'll have to see.


Anyway, the upcoming weekend will have the specializations demo. Currently, it seems the demo characters will only have access to WvW and PvP for testing. Players are also arguing for aerodome (raid testing) access. Also not sure how it's going to work with existing WvW queues and maps... Best case is they'll make a new WvW instance for the demo to avoid conflicting with actual WvW games. Either that or just restricted to Edge of the Mists, I guess.

(no subject)

Date: 2017-08-19 02:03 pm (UTC)
cashew: Sumomo acting like Sumomo (Default)
From: [personal profile] cashew
Gonna be busy with eclipse this weekend, so not really looking into this stuff. But looking forward to hear how you deal with specializations this weekend.

(Okay, maaaaaaaybe the mat thing is better, but the ID system makes me leery.)
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