MMO Grinder Sidequest is a quick look at Closed Betas or Subscription MMOs with limited trial periods, giving you a quick rundown of the game. One of the most feverishly anticipated MMOs ever just had its final Beta Weekend, and Chaos was there to see what the fuss was all about. Find out how this title stacks up not only to its predecessor, but to the current MMO market in general.


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ChaosD1

An avid MMO player (not expert. There's a difference) Jon "ChaosD1" Burkhardt is best known for MMO Grinder... Unless you're from TGWTG in which he's that guy who drinks Mountain Dew, collects Jigglypuff items and shows up to scream how things don't work that way in Phelous's videos.

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  1. July 28, 2012 at 11:31am
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    This game made me very, very sad. I spent thousands of hours playing the pvp of GW1, mostly GvG and Random Arenas. It has the best competitive pvp ever for the genre, and I doubt now that I will EVER see something like it again.

    GW2 is NOT a true successor to GW1′s pvp legacy. The only thing GW2 has over GW1 is WvW, but that is a casual pvp mode, not a competitive e-sport like what I loved about GW1. I’m not surprised, since even in GW1, I remember that the dev team responsible for PvP was saying they liked TF2, and they played that more than they played GW. And ever since I started playing GW back in April 2005 (god, it’s really been that long?), I’ve slowly watched a game that was designed with PvP as the end-game turn into a carebear pve game. I shouldn’t be surprised that the GW2 is a pve game with bad pvp thrown on as an afterthought.

    • July 28, 2012 at 07:58pm
      In response to bobothegoat
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      Oh, so you mean the 8 vs 8 structured PVP isn’t good enough? ’cause that’s like the exact thing they brought over from GW1. Not to mention like all the events and such they talk about the PVP way more than the PVE. Plus they have it in from the start that they can alter the skills separately from both PVE and PVP.

      • July 29, 2012 at 09:09am
        In response to Fausk
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        “Oh, so you mean the 8 vs 8 structured PVP isn’t good enough?”

        -That’s exactly what I’m saying (except that GW2′s structured pvp is 5v5, not 8v8).

        “’cause that’s like the exact thing they brought over from GW1.”

        -This is where you are wrong. GW2′s structure pvp is nothing like GvG. The fact that you would think it is tells me you probably didn’t play much GvG in the original. Hell, even if they brought over the 8v8 format, there is no way GW2 could ever be the same as GW1. Monks were possibly the most important class in the game. The balance of that game entirely hinged on Monks. GW2 got rid of monks entirely.

        “Not to mention like all the events and such they talk about the PVP way more than the PVE”

        Maybe if you count WvW as PvP, sure. But WvW is something entirely different than structured pvp. WvW is one of the things I actually like about GW2, but it’s no GvG, and the structured PvP does still feel like an afterthought.

  2. July 28, 2012 at 08:00am
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    Renown Hearts aren’t the main quest type, they weren’t even part of the original design of the game; they are placed there to give direction to the new player so that they can easily access the true focus; Dynamic Events. Renown Hearts become fewer and fewer as you go later into the game, and the final zone of the game, according to developers, has no renown hearts what so ever.

    I think it’s the fault of the developers that most seem to think renown hearts are the main focus of the leveling experience when they are not; most players see the check list and immediately believe that once the zone check list is filled, that the zone is complete, not so. The questing is based around exploration and discovery of Dynamic Events. Those giant dragons from trade shows? Those are Dynamic Events.

    I also don’t notice the zealot like community; only on youtube I do, and youtube is by far the worst place to get a feel for a community. I never noticed a terribly bad community in any of the 3 beta events, and only rarely do I see rabid fans on forums, and when I do it’s because of a condescending opinion or ignorance in the first place.

  3. July 28, 2012 at 07:12am
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    I have to agree with all h said even the last. While, I’ve already bought the game and have enjoyed the beta. The game was very hyped up. Like the ‘no quest’ thing people say the personal story is nothing, but quest in many people’s definitions.

    And I’ll be honest I do get angry when people tell AreanNet that the game needs to be like WoW ie get rid of scaling back and give us mass raids.

    But I’ve never had a bad expirance with the community while playing I rarely look at the chat box and I rarely say anything.

  4. July 28, 2012 at 01:20am
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    Dead on review, actually, you pretty much covered my thoughts exactly. It’s an extremely well polished title that brings lots of new stuff to the table, but also revamps a lot of existing concepts. Quests are still clearly in the game, they’re just in a form that feels more authentic than in other MMOs, and there’s usually multiple ways to solve them or multiple tactics to use.

    I especially agree about the fanbase and honestly would recommend that anyone who plays this game avoid the forums entirely. The love for the game is pure fanaticism, and anyone who even suggests that something could be improved is basically put on trial as if it were a witch hunt. I have a few good examples of this:

    1) I spotted a thread in which someone pointed out that it was rather bizarre for Rangers to start out with a throwing axe, instead of a more iconic weapon like a bow or sword. This was a good point especially since the GW2 homepage denotes that Rangers are masters of the bow. But people jumped all over this, rattling off how GW2 is so totally different and stuff, and by doing so completely missed the guy’s point: namely, that it really doesn’t make sense to use a standard fantasy class name like “Ranger” and then to ignore that class’s archetype just because you’re trying to be different. It’s akin to making a game in which you give a Warrior a staff or scepter as a starting weapon, then claim that it’s because you’re trying to be “different” and “revolutionary”. You just look silly doing that because you’re taking a standard fantasy term and then ignoring its definition only when it suits you.

    2) In the first beta weekend, the game allowed you to select any traits or skills you wanted, provided you saved enough points to pick the ones you needed. This led to some unbalanced builds, which ANet’s staff fixed by rearranging the skills into an AWFUL tiering system that forces you to buy several skills in one tier before you can unlock the next. Similarly, some traits in this new system are completely inaccessible unless you train yourself to Master or Grandmaster status, limiting your build options even further. Naturally there was a size-able outcry, but roughly as size-able was the faction of players who blindly parroted the ANet team’s reasons for making this change, not bothering to question any of them. Said list of reasons included things like “there were too many options and it scared people” (worth noting that any given trait tree has only twelve traits, and there’s only slightly over 20 utility skills TOTAL….most people playing this game are used to games like GW1, with a skill roster well over a hundred). But people refused to put any thought into the idea that maybe ANet had made a bad change, and the loyal faction eventually drowned out those who were against this massive change.

    I will definitely play the game when it comes out, but I won’t even touch the forums. The blind fan loyalty is just unbearable.

  5. July 27, 2012 at 08:56am
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    I played the first beta as a Charr elementalist, and it seems you realllyyy gotta have others tank for you when you’re a squishy class. When I’m the target of an enemy, i find it hard to survive unless i outright run away or dodge until I run outta stamina. In fact, in large gatherings of boss npc events, I’m often the one not attacking and just running around reviving everyone :D

    I wish I knew about the personal quest level requirements, because I was frustrated to all hell when I kept dying from normal mobs. Maybe I’ll give GW2 another try once its out.

    • July 27, 2012 at 06:07pm
      In response to tchan5158
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      A choice of weapon is very important especailly for elementalist soloing. Especially before you unlock adittional attack skills after the auto-attack skill. Also I you have to just run away in events all the time, then you are most probably doing something else.
      Also quests have the recommended level in brackets.

    • July 28, 2012 at 01:25am
      In response to tchan5158
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      Part of the problem is likely in your use of the word “tank”. You really shouldn’t be tanking at all in GW2, especially not as an elementalist. While you can do so for a limited time through some smart skill use, you really should not be trying to tank enemies out all the time, even as a Warrior. Monsters are loaded with too much AoE and telegraphed “big damage” attacks that playing close range all the time and never moving will get you killed constantly.

      Instead, it’s best to strafe left or right around your targets at all times while spell casting. It’s tricky to get the hang of, but once you get used to it, you become MUCH harder to pin down and kill. I used this tactic on both my Ranger and Elementalist to great effect.

      Also helpful is having one ranged weapon set and one melee. That way if you absolutely must close the distance, you can do so quickly and efficiently. I usually kept a sword/warhorn on my Ranger’s secondary weapon set so that if I couldn’t clean house with the longbow, I could quickly jump into combat with the sword and still had plenty of evasive tactics up my sleeve.

  6. July 24, 2012 at 06:21pm
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    I got alittle mad at this game just becouse they sent me a e-mail.

    title: Want to Play in the Final Guild Wars 2 Beta?
    well go buy the game becouse we are dont want to give you acces.

    That is just a bad way to sell the game.

  7. July 24, 2012 at 12:26pm
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    Looks really good

  8. July 24, 2012 at 11:42am
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    Given that I currently play league of legends which has apparently become the most played MMO of all time. I don’t fear too much from guild war 2′s community. The game looks really fun. If guild wars 2 goes free to play I’ll check it out.

    • July 24, 2012 at 12:55pm
      In response to Swift
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      You pay just for the game, there is no monthly subscribtion.

    • July 24, 2012 at 04:22pm
      In response to Swift
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      League of Legends is MOBA not an MMO.

  9. July 24, 2012 at 11:37am
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    I’m a fanboy of GW2, but I know I’m one. I fully acknowledge the problems some people might have with it. And the renown quests really are barely more than qusts, but at least you have diffirent way solving them – I is still an improvement over classic quests. You don’t really have to kill stuff, but can do any combination of objectives.
    Also it does not do a lot things that are a staple of most MMOs, like seperation of player into factions, or on servers (you can join friends on diffirent servers), for example. When the game was originnaly designed and the features were originnaly unveiled, the game was simply revelutio0nary, but now it it a great step in MMO evolution.
    While auto-targeting still is present, since you probably didn’t do a lot of PvP you didn’t experience, the emphasis on reacting to enemmied, and getting out of their attacks and the sheer fact that atacks go off wether or not the target in in the atack arc/range. That and the fact that you can(and SHOULD) move while doing slower atacks(and spells) – works with most of them.

  10. July 24, 2012 at 09:53am
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    I could probobly be considered one of this game’s rabid fans but I like to think that I’m one of the few who can see the games flaws and sees that this game might end up like the origional Guild Wars and simply gain a niche dedicated audience rather then becoming the new MMO monolith. I know some people believed this game to be the ultimate revolution of MMOs, but it’s far closer to be the truely polished way MMOs should be, raising the bar in general and putting in new ideas that will be seen as staples hereafter.

    One other thing worth mentioning about the game is it’s PvP system. There is a competative capture control mode where your character is placed at level 80 allowing use of all your abilities in this mode aswell as giving everyone armor that puts them on even ground eliminating the need for grind just to pvp, at level one you can play this mode just aswell as someone who hit level 80 immidiately after making your character.
    The other form of pvp is WvW where 3 servers are pitt against eachother to capture and control objectives across a huge map. Every player is side kicked to level 80 with their base stats so if you are a low level fighting someone who is much higher than you, you won’t really be able to win unless you beat them skill wise or attack them alongside other people, you still have a chance to beat someone higher level, but they have the advantage. In this mode you earn experience and level appropriate loot allowing this mode to be an alternative way to level up to max to the normal world. It should also be noted that in WvW you are going to want to group up to take objectives because it’s pretty much impossible to do anything on your own, this mode very much favors those who join guilds to become a large organized attack force.

    As you might have been able to tell I’m rediculously excited for this game to finally be releases. While it wont be the great MMO revolution, it’s a fantastic game that met all of my expectations after having followed it’s development for almost two years.

    (This has got to be the longest comment I have ever posted, guess my inner fanboi is showing. Know that I’m not proud of that, but I still wanted to say all of this.)

  11. July 24, 2012 at 08:31am
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    I played this in the last beta weekend, and I found it very enjoyable. It does some intresting things and, to me atleast, I found it more challenging when your “questing” alone than I’m used to.

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