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A GW2 vs LOTRO article ..


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http://massively.joystiq.com/2012/09/08/the-road-to-mordor-three-things-lotro-needs-from-guild-wars-2/

Sooo ... wouldn't mind seeing people here expand on this article a bit since I've seen disgruntled LOTRO veterans give different reviews of GW2 from different perspective ("You say pvp while he says pve"). GW2 and other MMO's (no need to be restrictive aaaand.. i ain't played gw2 sooo heh)

Just for a mental workout (gonna be tricky for me), let's bypass the Store greedmongering and lag discussion and stick to actual functions regardless of wether it's been monetized (on LOTRO or elsewhere), except of course for "would be worth doing for Turbine, I'd go for it if price tag was <x>" kind of talk.

Example (I'll think of more when caffeine kicks in)...

Runescape's housing.. still uses hooks system but you level construction (and thus lots of other craft skills as a side result) to get access to more rooms and kinds of rooms. In LOTRO's case dunno.. certain deeds add to your maximum amount of "rooms" and types available (how's THAT for festival action?).

Each house is its own instance accessed from different portals (only one of those portals accesses your house, kinda like our housing instances).

Of course each different type of room accepts different hooks. Garden sections count as rooms. Oh yeah, you can do SOME crafting in your house on Runescape btw %"#$%$

Turbine gave me THAT, I'd grumble about the "$20 to unlock it for my account.. dammit.. I'm VIP ffs" while inputting my CC info to buy the TP plus another $10 for my in-house cooking facilities, superior study, and superior workbench.. .. maybe another $10 to put a set in my kin's house. Then I'd spend as long as it takes to have the kickassest house in the Shire which would explain Saruman's interest in invading it apart from the pipeweed (damn that stoner wizard.. the tie-dye robes are a dead giveaway).

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Being able to access your vault and crafting mats from any crafting station in GW2 is pure genius. As is having your crafting mats stored seperately from your main vault and being account wide.

SWTOR did a similar thing it that you could use crafting items in your storage whist crafting without having to transfer them to your bag.

The idea of having to run to the vault, gather your materials, run to the crafting station in lotro is starting to look a bit old. I know it may seem lazy but compared to GW2 and SWTOR the Lotro system is very tedious.

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I completely disagree with him about character building being easier in GW than in Lotro (except for legendary items, I'll give him that.). Stats and virtues are incredibly simple in Lotro in my opinion, aside from the incredible effort it takes to earn the virtues and traits. Lotro feels like there's not enough options, well viable options to really have much choice. Generally there's a build that's clearly better than others. Hope I don't step on anyone's toes, but I never get the LMs who run around in Ancient Master for things like Roots of Fangorn or Foundry when full dps red traits gets the job done faster.. or running around solo in blue traits, relying on the bog lurker when they could be firebombing mobs down easily with sticky gourd. :P In GW, I can't tell what's best to do and I still don't know what some of the boons do. :P Perhaps there is no best. All the choices have left me wondering what to do. Perhaps I'm too used to Lotro's cookie-cutter builds and armour.

I'm also not bothered by his instant dungeon join complaint. It's easy enough to quickly travel there and I'm a bit pug alergic. Given how hard the dungeons are in GW, I'd be quite worried about completing them with pugs.

So what could GW do that Lotro does?

1. Wardrobe!! I really miss this. For the most part my character looks decent but I'd love more choice and the ability to swap around. My current gear is alright but I'd prefer another look. I'm not about to waste transmutation stones at lvl 40 though. Though GW's dye system is awesome. Once you unlock a dye on a toon you have unlimited, free use of it. Though it's lame it's per character and not account.

2. Non-zoned world. Whilst GW's world is really large all the loading screens between areas have actually made it all feel very separate and smaller to me. I love how I could run from the top tip of Forochel all the way to Moria and not encounter a loading screen.

3. Agree about the mounts

4. I've found I actually prefer earning weapon skills more slowly in PvE. It gives me something to look forward to whilst levelling. I'm coming to terms with it now, but for a bit there I was having trouble with the no vertical progression thing. Though I don't know how fine I'll be with this when it comes to alts and when I hit level cap with my main.

What Lotro needs from GW:

1. Crafting/bank/mail/trading post accessibility: Completely agree about the crafting. It's been so refreshing to have a separate space for all my crafting mats (though I found out stacks cap at 250). And I love how I can access my bank from any crafting station and send crafting mats to storage from anywhere in the world. I can pick up/send mail from anywhere. I can also browse and sell on the trading post from anywhere, but I do have to go to a NPC to pick up purchases.

2. Inductionless actions: Lotro is starting to feel very slow and old to me now, especially on LM. Also, why do we need a long-induction to travel anywhere via map, hunter port, leaving the instance or captain summoning? Why do I need to spend a second or so summoning pets or reading scrolls. Oh and in GW there's very few crafting inductions. The speed in which you process mats is awesome! I suppose it's because Lotro is subscription based and they want to slow you down as much as they can to artificially prolong things.

3. Complete pvp overhaul. Think we all know about this. :P I love that I can jump into pvp immediately. I like the quick spvp matches (though I don't like how you can't play with friends).

4. Agreed about the downleveling

Those are my big points for now.

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2. Non-zoned world. Whilst GW's world is really large all the loading screens between areas have actually made it all feel very separate and smaller to me. I love how I could run from the top tip of Forochel all the way to Moria and not encounter a loading screen.

I agree. Zoned worlds seem to be in vogue in MMOs right now, and I strongly dislike it as a trend. It was one of the few things I disliked about SWTOR before their F2P debacle killed the game dead for me.

Making the world modular is poor design and makes for an unsatisfactory in-game experience. These worlds feel much less like a cohesive world and much more like a series of levels or stages. Developers really need to get out of the habit ASAP as far as I'm concerned.

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Being able to access your vault and crafting mats from any crafting station in GW2 is pure genius. As is having your crafting mats stored seperately from your main vault and being account wide.

SWTOR did a similar thing it that you could use crafting items in your storage whist crafting without having to transfer them to your bag.

The idea of having to run to the vault, gather your materials, run to the crafting station in lotro is starting to look a bit old. I know it may seem lazy but compared to GW2 and SWTOR the Lotro system is very tedious.

RIFT has that feature too.

You must realize that if LOTRO adds something like this it will come at a premium 995TP cost.

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I know nothing about GW, but on the subject of accessing crafting mats from anywhere, I'm not sure I would like it. It would be a logical step in LOTRO, but in an unfortunate direction several previous steps have taken. Basically, it seems to me that the world we're set in is becoming less important. At the start, you were at a location in Middle Earth and to go somewhere else you had to ride there. There were a few summoning options for special character types to get your fellowship together. Then (I don't think at the start) there were summoning horns. One person had to get to the entrance of an instance but the rest were saved the trouble. More recently, the instance finder annihilates geography and lets us teleport anywhere. The result is that there are huge areas of landscape where no-one goes, apart from the first "find entrance to..." deed.

Storage is similar. I think this was a flawed idea from the start: you could put something in your vault at Thorin's Hall and get it out of another vault in Bree! People used to maintain a "storage alt" and send items by post. Then we had account-wide shared storage and an account-wide wardrobe. Recently, the barter wallet lets alts spend tokens which your main put in his pocket. (Oh, and the Store which you can access from anywhere, and mannequins...)

All this is very convenient, but it's not immersive; it has the effect of dismantling the game world and reducing play to a series of short raids or crafting and trading episodes, rather than an alter-ego's career. I guess it's going that way because it's what the majority of players like, but personally I regret it.

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2. Non-zoned world. Whilst GW's world is really large all the loading screens between areas have actually made it all feel very separate and smaller to me. I love how I could run from the top tip of Forochel all the way to Moria and not encounter a loading screen.
I'm usually a big "hater" of zoned worlds for MMORPGs, but in GW2, the zones are so huge that I don't have a problem with it. Also, ANet did a good job in making sense with the zone borders and links, you don't go directly from snowy mountains to desert without transition, like in many other zoned games.

Would I prefer a totally non zoned world? Yes. But zones allow mechanics that non-zoned worlds do not allow. Despite being zoned, the world in GW2 feels more "alive" and immersive than many games, including LOTRO.

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Only 3 things? OK, I'll make it only one. The Big One.

What Lotro needs from GW2:

Arenanet. Turbine, for about the last 3 years, have been making the most god-almighty fuck-up of what ought to be the best & most lucrative MMO licence available. It's slightly unfair to compare a new game to a mature one, and this is my first experience of Anet. Nevertheless, they care, they code, they communicate. Turbine long ago stopped giving the impression that any of those three things matter to them anymore. There's only one c word that Turbine recognise nowadays. Cash.

What GW needs from LotRO:

It would be easy to say "sod all", frankly. Let me propose a catch-all category of "cosmetics". Cosmetics are of little interest to me, and I wouldn't care if it wasn't there in LotRO. However, housing has always been a nice idea, even though it's one of many things that is long overdue an overhaul. Before the shared vault, the housing chests were the easiest way to move stuff between alts and, in some ways, still is. With the vault in GW2 being account wide, there's little genuine "need" for housing, but it'd still be a nice addition. As for the wardrobe, already cited by many, whilst I have no interest in it myself, I would have no objection to Anet "wasting" development resource on it, as I recognise it to be something that would be enormously popular. So yeah, housing would be nice, and I'd be happy to see better cosmetic mechanics available in GW2.

Mounts. Absolutely not. The author of the piece is talking rubbish. They are totally unnecessary. And look how Turbine have been milking that since F2P. Do I want to see that sort of thing in GW2? No. I can't agree about the Instance Finder either. That is just such a non-issue. As for comparisons in content, again, unfair comparison between a brand new game & a mature game. This time, the comparison is not fair on GW2.

I would also agree that the notion that GW2's character building system is easier is complete nonsense. It isn't; it's much more complex, because classes are no longer role-oriented. A Guardian is not just a tank; not even a tank, in fact. LotRO has been steadily getting sillier as T have added more & more skills that blur the edges of the original class roles. I don't object to a system where class = role at all. But GW2 is certainly not that, and certainly not an "easier" system.

Downlevelling - this may actually be one of the most significant developments in GW2. I don't know if it's been done in another game before, but it's little short of genius. My view is almost opposite to TRTM - what I like about it is that it almost completely stops power-levelling. I can still remember the L6 twerp of a hobbit bleating in the Trollshaws channel because no-one would help him with the L40 cook's quest. Whilst, in GW2, a L80 will have a significant advantage in a L5 area because of better gear, you can still get killed if you're careless. No more "Why are these mobs now ignoring me when 5 minutes ago they were trying to take my head off?" At one stroke, the world makes far more sense and works much better. Though it is a bit of nuisance if all you want to do is run around resource-gathering! ;)

In short, I didn't think much of the TRTM article. Unsurprisingly, LotRO has rather more to learn from GW2 than vice versa. That's only to be expected, since GW2 is innovating on the back of its predecessors. The real problem is that Turbine stopped innovating so long ago, and show no sign of starting again. Turbine could learn from Arenanet, but will they? I doubt it. They'll just pinch the ideas that can be easily slotted into the existing game.

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I know nothing about GW, but on the subject of accessing crafting mats from anywhere, I'm not sure I would like it.

People can correct me if I'm wrong, but you can't access crafting mats from anywhere. You can deposit crafting mats from anywhere but that's basically like having a separate crafting bag. You can access your mats at any crafting station or your vault. So there's no running back and forth from the bank whilst you're crafting. It was always annoying when you realised you forgot a certain mat and have to run back to your vault. Instead you do it all right there which makes complete sense.

I like immersion but regarding things like storage, vaults, mail.. I want convenience and I like that GW offers that.

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I can think of one thing readily that LOTRO can borrow from the GW franchise.

This is a Bree-land kinship house in LOTRO:

Bree-land_Kinship_House.jpg

This is my guild hall from GW1:

Imperial_Isle_map.jpg

Now, I'm referring strictly to the size comparison of the two and not the battling aspect of the GW hall. True, guild halls in GW1 are humongous, and that size would be overkill in LOTRO, but I believe that Turbine can do better by allowing people to buy as much house as they can within reason, scaling upkeep with size. City of Heroes was an excellent example of the type of versatility housing should have. Instead of cookie-cutter shapes, the lot size should be upgradable and decorating more free-form than the current model.

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I am not impressed by GW2 so I won´t buy this game.

But I hope that Turbine will take from all new MMO´s new innovations. Not all, because not all new game-elements will fit in LOTRO.

But maybe the postal-system of SWTOR (so you can send up to 8 items with one ingame-letter instead of only a single item).

Or the crafting-system of SWTOR, where it is possible to craft items even if you are offline. (Its more than boring to stand for hours to create things and to be blocked to play the game.).

But I would also like to see some specific LOTRO changes.

I like extremely the wardrobe system of LOTRO. But it would be fine to replace shields and weapons with cosmetic designs.

So a dwarf-guardian in a cosmetic dwarfen outfit would not be forced to run around with a gold-glittering elven-shield because this has the best values.

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Cosmetic shields and cosmetic weapons (the latter of which was supposed to be in development, according to earlier Producers' letters) are long overdue. The Dwarf example you mentioned is solid. I mean, why should someone's Dwarf have to tote around what he would consider a flimsy shield from an RP or aesthetics perspective, just because the stats are better?

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Doesn't make much sense... how can you not be impressed by something you don't play?

Because I tested GW2 on the PC of a friend of mine who is actually playing the game. If I remember correctly his main char was level 50.

And as I wrote: I was not impressed at all.

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ArenaNet's art team is unique, from what I've seen from the GW franchise. Landscapes, horizons, cloud formations, etc. seem more painted and less rendered. Everything looks so smooth in texture. I've not seen another company's work duplicate that.

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Because I tested GW2 on the PC of a friend of mine who is actually playing the game. If I remember correctly his main char was level 50.

And as I wrote: I was not impressed at all.

So you jumped into a MMORPG you don't know, directly on someone else's level 50 character, and you pretend you "tested" the game?

I hope you don't mind if I don't take you seriously. It's like you had never played LOTRO, I'd give you a level 55 character, put you into Moria and say "go on, try the game"... you have not TESTED the game after that, you didn't even get a feel of it.

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