Tooling AroundMay 31, 2012 at 12:31 pm | Posted in Guild Wars 2, mmorpg | 26 Comments
Tags: crafting, gathering, Guild Wars 2, MMO, mmorpg
One thing I discovered during the Beta Weekend Event in Guild Wars 2 was that gathering suddenly had a barrier to entry. You must equip gathering tools, a logging axe, mining pick, or harvesting sickle before gathering from a node. They have 100, 100 and 50 uses respectively.
It had always been my impression that Arenanet was shooting for a more open approach to gathering. That certainly seemed the case with how they designed nodes to be available independently to each player. One didn’t have to go competing for nodes with others.
So imagine my surprise when I walked up to a node only to receive a message about needing equipment.
If truth be told I had envisioned a socialist paradise where anyone who wanted to help out their guild would walk up to any node, gather some materials, and later deposit them in the guild bank for all to use. Alas, there is a Stalin to every Lenin.
On an immersion level I suppose it makes sense to carry around tools to hack down trees and so forth instead of chopping away with a long sword. Yet on a broader level of game design I only find it to be cumbersome. A nuisance.
If I’m out in the wilderness gathering and my tools evaporate in my hands, that is an annoyance. Having to spend coin to use fast travel to a merchant to buy the tools with karma or gold, then return using even more coin seems aggravating. Of course that being said I’m not currently able to play the game so I can’t say for sure it is aggravating.
Then there is the annoyance of using cheap tools to harvest low level materials while I keep higher level tools in my inventory to keep on hand for high level materials.
Unfortunately there is a practical and understandable reason for these tools. A gold sink. A free and unlimited labour force unendingly supplying materials for crafting would likely have been the death of a stable economy. It is probably the sole reason for the existence of tools, and admittedly very necessary.
I’m not a fan but I can’t even think of a single alternative that would make crafting better off.
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