At PAX East, all the writers here at the Gaming Nook attended the MMORPG.COM Panel: The Future of Online Gaming. We were all lucky enough to receive Beta invites as a result from ArenaNet. This past weekend was the first public event and I spent around 20 hours exploring Tyria. These are my experiences...
Usually people will say that a MMORPG looks great, for an MMORPG. People do not expect the same level of Graphics from an MMORPG compared to a single player RPG. Choosing the right art style goes a long way and Guild Wars 2 is a beautiful game, not just for a MMORPG, but in general.
The game focuses on group play and at level 2 I was able to group with 4 people of all three races and be next to them within 5 minutes. The usual XP nerf experienced in other games does not apply however to get credit for a kill you must hit the NPC at least once. If you miss, you get no credit. If the Quest asks you to destroy something, and a group member does, you will still need to destroy it as well. Some quests have you picking up objects off the ground. The good news on that is if someone beats you to the object, it will still be there for you to pick up.
Dynamic events add spontaneous fun while moving about the world and work great, for the most part. The events scale up to the number of people in the area. Melee characters can have a hard time once a lot of people are in the area. at level 3 i was hit for 2000, one shot, by a buffed Charr Shaman NPC. They need a little work in my opinion, but i participated in around 100, only had two issues. Dynamic events are also repeatable, you can go back to the first one you encounter 10 levels alter. The game will scale your character down to that level, and you will receive a good reward for participating.
Currently, instead of waiting in a queue if your server is full the game will put you into a overflow server. This is a great thing on paper. In practice the only problem is that the game needs to bring your whole party to the same server, with 4 people in a group, all 4 of us ended up on different overflow servers, I do hope they fix this.
I always felt under leveled compared to the content i was on. By the time I completed 100% of the Human starting area(minus one bugged skill point) i was level 13, having completed my story line in that area as well. The next step was my lvl 16 story. It just didn’t feel right – and i had redone multiple dynamic events. This is my biggest gripe. I should not have to go back and do the same content just to be able to move on so early in the game. As stated previosuly, you can move your character to a different starting zone and do those quests which helps, but the lack of tutorial for that makes me feel as though it's not the intended route.
I'll leave it at this for now. I think I have more to say, but I need to think about my experience and compare it in my mind to past MMORPG's that I have played. Thus far I do believe I will be purchasing this game and I do look forward to exploring the lands of Tyria more.