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Friday, September 01, 2006

Guild Wars: PvP Unlock Packs, part two

So, predictably the GW community is divided as to whether the sale of PvP unlock packs is a good idea or not.

There's a massive amount of whining over at the more PvE-centric GWOnline - a 50+ page thread already. There's even some whining in the PvP forum at GWGuru although generally the response there seems more positive.

It's unclear exactly what they are complaining about - it seems generally that the sky-is-falling PvE people expect that ArenaNet will start charging for everything, including PvE items etc. That would devalue their perceived character value that they've farmed their little hearts out for.

Seems overwhelmingly unlikely.

The whole debate reminds me a bit of the real-life drama where gay marriage gets people upset. Apparently that devalues people's own marriage (unlike, say, Ms. Britney Spears getting married for 20 seconds in Vegas). This is even weirder than that argument, if anything, because it's purely PvP and has nothing to do with PvE. Admittedly, in the gay marriage case it's clearly an example of barely-veiled homophobia and the "devaluing marriage" argument is just a proxy.

Skill unlocks are an option which don't even apply to the latest content. There's nothing forcing you to buy them and it doesn't affect PvE at all. It just means that it's easier for new PvP players to catch up with the otherwise mammoth grind required to unlock everything. Personally, I think that having an unlock system for skills isn't all bad - gotta tap into that operant conditioning, after all - but right now the Balthazar's Faction system needs some tweaking to let people do all their unlocking directly from PvP instead of making it more efficient to play PvE.

Now, as Ensign points out, the right price point is debatable but overall this development is a good thing. Obviously the price is something they can fix. The price does seem rather high, especially if you have to own Prophecies too - which is apparently the case right now.


Blogger Brinstar said...

I don't see a problem with the unlocks, either. If I played PvP competitively, I would totally go for it. And even as a PvE player, those unlock packs have no bearing on me whatsoever. Now, if they started charging for PvE stuff, which seems unlikely as you said, then I might have a different opinion. However, I think it's a fine idea. More power to ArenaNet, and the PvPers.

9/01/2006 01:50:00 PM  
Blogger Clamatius said...

Yeah, extra options are always good.

I think the price point is fine if they remove the chapter owning requirement - otherwise it's a bit steep.

There is one minor sideeffect on PvE right now in that if you do own Prophecies and buy the unlock pack, then skill trainers will sell you all non-elite skills. Still not a big deal IMHO.

9/01/2006 02:00:00 PM  

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