My new Choppa, Gutrag

My new Choppa, "Gutrag"

Well, I’ve been playing WAR for about two hours this morning. I’ve had a good time after somewhat of a slow start. Pre-launch my ideal class was a Choppa, so that’s what I decided to go with. It’s a pleasant change from my Sorcerer who just seemed all too weak compared to his strength at level 20. I’m plowing through mobs, which is great for soloing. I have to be careful though because if I get too offensive, my durability drops to the floor. I could see this class being great for soloing.

The downside to this morning is that I’ve encountered a grand total of five other players. I’m not taking that fact to heart however, as it’s early. I’ll be a little more downtrodden if this keeps up into the day when I log back on. The one fact that does bother me a bit is that I’ve yet to have one scenario pop. Again, I know it’s the morning, but for two hours… not one? I’ll reserve judgment until later into this 10-day experiment.

Unlike my last try, I’m approaching this experience a little differently. I’m not trying to get invested in PvE. Last time, I was hoping that WAR would meet all of my gaming desires and was let down. It’s an RvR game, first and foremost, and questing is just a side-activity. So, I’m ignoring most of the quest text and am going to do my best to power through levels as quick as I can to get where the action is.

WAR is a great game, as I’ve always thought. I still see tons of potential for it — if Mythic continues to develop it.

As it stands now, I see three key things that could stand to be changed.

First, speed up the rate of leveling via PvE. Keep oRvR on the top, by far, but I propose that the leveling curve be dropped. 10k exp needed to level to 6? That just seems over the top to me. Why does there need to be such a barrier when the real action begins at the end anyways. One of the most universal complaints about the game is the PvE grind. It just goes on for too long for a game that purports to be about RvR.

PvE should open doors to RvR, not function as something you dread doing by tier 3 or sooner. It needs to be an alternative, not a form of punishment for going against the “main” focus of the game. Make it less rewarding than RvR but less gruesome than it is now. Funnel people towards tier three.

Second, based upon these initial observations (opinions, which are subject to change) more server consolidations need to happen. Pheonix Throne was at medium/medium last night at peak hours. Hell, two out of all of those servers were at medium/medium at max. Every other one was at low/low. To a new player, that just looks bad.

Here’s how I see it. Server consolidations look bad to the masses, yes, but good gameplay can make up for that. Counter the consolidations with advertising and PR. If the game experience makes up for a “shortage” in servers, it’s all the better. If there’s a lack of action at any time throughout the day, it leaves a portion of the playerbase out in the cold and likely to cancel their subscriptions. WAR is great when there’s people, without them it’s lackluster PvE. It’s punishment and who would want to take part in that?

Finally, and this may seem odd given my past stance, I’d say that cross-server scenarios need to be made available. There’s a lot of dispute about this. People say that it destroys server community. I’d probably agree to an extent; however, what’s worse, falling subscription numbers or battling against anonymous people.

The downside to this could be counteracted in two ways: make it optional (give players the choice of “this server” or “cross-server”) or make it need restricted. For example, if there’s a lack of single server scenario activity, the game will “unlock” the cross-server option.

So far, my experiences have been largely positive. I can’t wait to tear into some RvR action. If this experiment goes well, I may make WAR my “subscription game.” Oh, I did mention I actually severed the tie between World of Warcraft and my bank account, right? Yep. Officially cancelled. In the past two months, I’ve spent maybe an hour on the game and, as I mentioned last time we talked, I really had no urge to log on. Not enough happening. So, here we are WAR, we this time make for a new romance?