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Guild Wars 2: More Than Just a Damage Number

SBFordSBFord Former Associate EditorMember LegendaryPosts: 33,126

imageGuild Wars 2: More Than Just a Damage Number

It is almost a week on from the announcement that staff lay-offs were coming to Guild Wars 2 publisher, ArenaNet. As I begin to look back on the fall out of a pretty catastrophic wipe, Thursday morning is creeping up on me, and it seems like an appropriate time to sit and take stock of everything that has happened.

Read the full story here



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Comments

  • nastilonnastilon Member UncommonPosts: 138
    What is depressing to me is that mobile games made about 500 million dollars for NC soft and traditional MMOs made 1/5 of that (if I converted the currency correctly).

    Why are we looking at Q3 3017 numbers and not Q3 2018? I don't see how you can look at such old data and evaluate it for what has happened now.

    I bet if you looked at Q3 2018 numbers it would be readily apparent why everything has transpired.
    ScotHiromantTorvaltzervo
  • AeanderAeander Member LegendaryPosts: 4,848
    Guild Wars 2's main financial problem is its business model. It's extremely pro-consumer (by MMORPG standards, not quite so much by general gaming standards), and that doesn't rake in the big bucks (especially not in NCSoft's home Korean market.)

    I don't see the situation changing. Guild Wars 2 is one of the top 3-5 western MMOs right now, but that isn't something that NCSoft cares about, as they look down upon the world in their ivory towers built on the backs of Asian whales. 
    TorvalElquinchojin2kGregorMcgregorinfomatz
  • maskedweaselmaskedweasel Member EpicPosts: 10,241
    Aeander said:
    Guild Wars 2's main financial problem is its business model. It's extremely pro-consumer (by MMORPG standards, not quite so much by general gaming standards), and that doesn't rake in the big bucks (especially not in NCSoft's home Korean market.)

    I don't see the situation changing. Guild Wars 2 is one of the top 3-5 western MMOs right now, but that isn't something that NCSoft cares about, as they look down upon the world in their ivory towers built on the backs of Asian whales. 
    You're right, but it's not as pro consumer as you think, it's only pro consumer when you take gw2 into consideration in comparison to gw1.  Gw1, had what, 4 releases and expansions within a 3 year period? We've seen 3 releases (including the base game in both cases) in 7 years?  

    When you decide to go by to play, it's usually under the assumption you'll be releasing more boxes and more buy to play expansions.  Instead GW2 has heavily attempted to rely on a mostly cosmetic cash shop.. which doesn't work in many, many cases. 
    LokeroRadooTorvalvelimirius



  • druezdruez Member UncommonPosts: 102
    Horizontal progression is the reason I stopped playing GW2. I'm not a fan of that model. Also, i was in it more for the PVP and it became pretty stale.
    DvoraTheCredibleHulk
  • AeanderAeander Member LegendaryPosts: 4,848
    Aeander said:
    Guild Wars 2's main financial problem is its business model. It's extremely pro-consumer (by MMORPG standards, not quite so much by general gaming standards), and that doesn't rake in the big bucks (especially not in NCSoft's home Korean market.)

    I don't see the situation changing. Guild Wars 2 is one of the top 3-5 western MMOs right now, but that isn't something that NCSoft cares about, as they look down upon the world in their ivory towers built on the backs of Asian whales. 
    You're right, but it's not as pro consumer as you think, it's only pro consumer when you take gw2 into consideration in comparison to gw1.  Gw1, had what, 4 releases and expansions within a 3 year period? We've seen 3 releases (including the base game in both cases) in 7 years?  

    When you decide to go by to play, it's usually under the assumption you'll be releasing more boxes and more buy to play expansions.  Instead GW2 has heavily attempted to rely on a mostly cosmetic cash shop.. which doesn't work in many, many cases. 
    No, I do mean by MMO standards in general. This is a genre plagued by pay to win cash shops, subscription fees (that come alongside box expansions AND cash shops), and various other gut punches vaguely justified by the high cost of developing and maintaining these games.

    When the biggest name in the genre, World of Warcraft, has a subscription fee, and a box price, and expansions, AND a cash shop, I think it's fair to say that Guild Wars 2 is pretty consumer friendly for its genre.

    And as far as Guild Wars 1 goes... who cares? Those box expansions were huge, high quality releases well worth their money (and, Hell, worth much more than a typical WoW, GW2, or ESO expansion). It would have been nice to have them spread out more, but when ESO throws out a new tiny ass, overpriced expansion every few months or so, I can't really call out Guild Wars for its own. 

    (That isn't to say that Guild Wars didn't have its business model issues. Skill unlocks in PvP were a huge problem that tends to go unacknowledged.)
    ThupliARSoulSin
  • gervaise1gervaise1 Member EpicPosts: 6,408

    nastilon said:




    Why are we looking at Q3 3017 numbers and not Q3 2018? I don't see how you can look at such old data and evaluate it for what has happened now.




    As the article says:
    "expansions provide a fantastic jumping on point as punctuation point for huge narrative arcs. They also give a definite boost to revenue streams and media attention, as the numbers from NCSoft show around the launch of Path of Fire."

    And the launch of Path of Fire was around Q3 2017.
    ThupliBillMurphy
  • LokeroLokero Member RarePosts: 1,514
    Aeander said:
    Guild Wars 2's main financial problem is its business model. It's extremely pro-consumer (by MMORPG standards, not quite so much by general gaming standards), and that doesn't rake in the big bucks (especially not in NCSoft's home Korean market.)

    I don't see the situation changing. Guild Wars 2 is one of the top 3-5 western MMOs right now, but that isn't something that NCSoft cares about, as they look down upon the world in their ivory towers built on the backs of Asian whales. 
    You're right, but it's not as pro consumer as you think, it's only pro consumer when you take gw2 into consideration in comparison to gw1.  Gw1, had what, 4 releases and expansions within a 3 year period? We've seen 3 releases (including the base game in both cases) in 7 years?  

    When you decide to go by to play, it's usually under the assumption you'll be releasing more boxes and more buy to play expansions.  Instead GW2 has heavily attempted to rely on a mostly cosmetic cash shop.. which doesn't work in many, many cases. 
    I definitely think they should have put more focus on expansions and less on the Living World stuff.
    While the LW is "OK", I think it's really been a thorn in the game's side.  It would be different if they were releasing a patch/episode every month or something, but given how long it takes them for each episode, they could have done far better with expansions.

    Half the playerbase doesn't even care about the LW stuff, but generally, nearly all players will pick up an expansion to a game they actively play.

    Look at the Everquest franchise -- they've survived this long by just releasing multiple expansions a year.  Because, they know that's one thing that players will buy in an MMO.
    maskedweaselTorvalinfomatz
  • ScotScot Member LegendaryPosts: 12,104
    edited March 1

    nastilon said:

    What is depressing to me is that mobile games made about 500 million dollars for NC soft and traditional MMOs made 1/5 of that (if I converted the currency correctly).



    Why are we looking at Q3 3017 numbers and not Q3 2018? I don't see how you can look at such old data and evaluate it for what has happened now.



    I bet if you looked at Q3 2018 numbers it would be readily apparent why everything has transpired.


    And you still have players looking at the tide that is mobile gaming coming in and saying "this won't wet our consoles". 'Is it transferable to console' is now something they are thinking about for every PC and console game that gets released. They now make a mobile version spin off, but what would make better sense to cut costs would be to make one version that gets tweaked. Remember what happened with console and PC, the PC ended up taking inferior ports because the money was in consoles. How long before games start on mobiles and get remade for PC/console?

     25 Agrees

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  • EagleDelta2EagleDelta2 Member UncommonPosts: 22



    Aeander said:

    Guild Wars 2's main financial problem is its business model. It's extremely pro-consumer (by MMORPG standards, not quite so much by general gaming standards), and that doesn't rake in the big bucks (especially not in NCSoft's home Korean market.)

    I don't see the situation changing. Guild Wars 2 is one of the top 3-5 western MMOs right now, but that isn't something that NCSoft cares about, as they look down upon the world in their ivory towers built on the backs of Asian whales. 


    You're right, but it's not as pro consumer as you think, it's only pro consumer when you take gw2 into consideration in comparison to gw1.  Gw1, had what, 4 releases and expansions within a 3 year period? We've seen 3 releases (including the base game in both cases) in 7 years?  

    When you decide to go by to play, it's usually under the assumption you'll be releasing more boxes and more buy to play expansions.  Instead GW2 has heavily attempted to rely on a mostly cosmetic cash shop.. which doesn't work in many, many cases. 



    ArenaNet also stated that they could viably keep that pace for GW1. It was incredibly grueling and hard to keep up without burning devs out. During those days, ANet was still a start-up and doing what it needed to become a stable company. Once a company gets past that hump, they have to slow down a bit to make sure they don't drive their employees into the ground from exhaustion. Devs are still people with limits.
  • maskedweaselmaskedweasel Member EpicPosts: 10,241



    Aeander said:

    Guild Wars 2's main financial problem is its business model. It's extremely pro-consumer (by MMORPG standards, not quite so much by general gaming standards), and that doesn't rake in the big bucks (especially not in NCSoft's home Korean market.)

    I don't see the situation changing. Guild Wars 2 is one of the top 3-5 western MMOs right now, but that isn't something that NCSoft cares about, as they look down upon the world in their ivory towers built on the backs of Asian whales. 


    You're right, but it's not as pro consumer as you think, it's only pro consumer when you take gw2 into consideration in comparison to gw1.  Gw1, had what, 4 releases and expansions within a 3 year period? We've seen 3 releases (including the base game in both cases) in 7 years?  

    When you decide to go by to play, it's usually under the assumption you'll be releasing more boxes and more buy to play expansions.  Instead GW2 has heavily attempted to rely on a mostly cosmetic cash shop.. which doesn't work in many, many cases. 



    ArenaNet also stated that they could viably keep that pace for GW1. It was incredibly grueling and hard to keep up without burning devs out. During those days, ANet was still a start-up and doing what it needed to become a stable company. Once a company gets past that hump, they have to slow down a bit to make sure they don't drive their employees into the ground from exhaustion. Devs are still people with limits.
    I get that, but it seems like they still did that with the living world.  If we received expansions even once every 2 years, I don't doubt they would be in a better place than they are now. We would already have 3 expansions with 1 on the way. Instead we have seasons of living world story, and new holiday events.

    Sustainability isn't the issue, it's what their focus is.  Their focus is very consumer friendly.. or at least.. somewhat... consumer friendly as people don't have to spend a lot of money to play, but it's not heavy on revenue generation, which is why I feel they are where they are.

    I also feel like saying that they are committed to GW2 is obviously not their brightest point, they can't tread on GW2 much longer. It's obviously not generating the revenue they expected, they should have teased other upcoming projects, something revenue generating people can get excited about. 



  • AeanderAeander Member LegendaryPosts: 4,848
    edited March 1



    Aeander said:

    Guild Wars 2's main financial problem is its business model. It's extremely pro-consumer (by MMORPG standards, not quite so much by general gaming standards), and that doesn't rake in the big bucks (especially not in NCSoft's home Korean market.)

    I don't see the situation changing. Guild Wars 2 is one of the top 3-5 western MMOs right now, but that isn't something that NCSoft cares about, as they look down upon the world in their ivory towers built on the backs of Asian whales. 


    You're right, but it's not as pro consumer as you think, it's only pro consumer when you take gw2 into consideration in comparison to gw1.  Gw1, had what, 4 releases and expansions within a 3 year period? We've seen 3 releases (including the base game in both cases) in 7 years?  

    When you decide to go by to play, it's usually under the assumption you'll be releasing more boxes and more buy to play expansions.  Instead GW2 has heavily attempted to rely on a mostly cosmetic cash shop.. which doesn't work in many, many cases. 



    ArenaNet also stated that they could viably keep that pace for GW1. It was incredibly grueling and hard to keep up without burning devs out. During those days, ANet was still a start-up and doing what it needed to become a stable company. Once a company gets past that hump, they have to slow down a bit to make sure they don't drive their employees into the ground from exhaustion. Devs are still people with limits.
    I get that, but it seems like they still did that with the living world.  If we received expansions even once every 2 years, I don't doubt they would be in a better place than they are now. We would already have 3 expansions with 1 on the way. Instead we have seasons of living world story, and new holiday events.

    Sustainability isn't the issue, it's what their focus is.  Their focus is very consumer friendly.. or at least.. somewhat... consumer friendly as people don't have to spend a lot of money to play, but it's not heavy on revenue generation, which is why I feel they are where they are.

    I also feel like saying that they are committed to GW2 is obviously not their brightest point, they can't tread on GW2 much longer. It's obviously not generating the revenue they expected, they should have teased other upcoming projects, something revenue generating people can get excited about. 
    I think that if the current (pre layoff) direction and organization of the game had been there from the beginning, we'd be in a much better place. 

    Seasons 1-2 of the living world were really inconsistent, and often really poorly polished. And at no point did they feel like a substantial, healthy backbone for the game. I don't think that I've ever publicly said this before, but I was on the verge of quitting the game before the Heart of Thorns launch, because I simply felt that there was nothing to look forward to and no substantial future for the game. When Heart of Thorns was announced on my birthday, I was ecstatic and reinvigorated in my love for the game.

    If Heart of Thorns was a Path of Fire sized expansion and launched in 2014 instead of 2015 (in this theoretical world in which Arenanet had their current content cadence from the beginning), Guild Wars 2 would be in a much better place.
    maskedweasel
  • BananableBananable Member UncommonPosts: 194
    "In fact, if we had really stopped to read the signs, it might have been apparent much earlier that things seemed a bit amiss."
    LOLZ


    "Back in 2018, Mike Z sat down with us at Gamescom and revealed that Guild Wars 2 would not get a third expansion"
    LOLZ

    But you were busy lying to kids.
    Instead of simply playing the game(s).

    Hurry up kids, buy Anthem, Dead or alive 6, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy, Resident evil collection on switch today! Cuz publishers want to buy island! WHOOO!

    Its same as it were before - Landmark, Wild Star, MHO, F76 (And even MEA) ALL OVER AGAIN! WOW! WHAT A SURPRISE!

    What next "game" are you going to praise right before its gonna be flushed away?
    maskedweaselAeandervelimirius
  • AldersAlders Member RarePosts: 2,163
    edited March 1
    I'd rather have a new expansion every 12-18 months instead of the living world story narrative nonsense. I may be weird but i really don't care about story in an MMORPG. I want things to do with my friends and other players that are fun, new, and exciting. New classes and races are a lot more fun than some new NPC to follow around and save the world with yet again.

    I'd wager a guess that the majority of my guild mates that i started the game with and all no longer play, feel the same.
    Lokero
  • UngoodUngood Member EpicPosts: 2,757
    Bold move on their part, we shall see if it pays off.

    I can see the logic behind this as well, as HoT was a catastrophic mess , and PoF felt like a lightweight x-pac, so, while I wish it was not the case, their two expansions really didn't do them any favors, so here is hoping their next plan works out better for them.

    We shall see what the year brings for them. Wishing them well.
  • hyllyhhyllyh Member UncommonPosts: 247
    mobile game... never tried one (and not about to try by now) but really want to know what's the lifepan of one ...

    for GW2, i play time to time (event, festival) but i dont find it fun as it's time consumer, meta directed and a little... cheated :)
    not a surprise then, mostly of friends abandonned it since time too
    hoping like a lot of player for a newer mmo but the genre seems pretty dead
  • exile01exile01 Member RarePosts: 1,050
    Abadoned GW2 in the first first two weeks after release ,never felt so betrayed.
    maskedweaselAeandervelimirius
  • UngoodUngood Member EpicPosts: 2,757
    hyllyh said:
    mobile game... never tried one (and not about to try by now) but really want to know what's the lifepan of one ...

    for GW2, i play time to time (event, festival) but i dont find it fun as it's time consumer, meta directed and a little... cheated :)
    not a surprise then, mostly of friends abandonned it since time too
    hoping like a lot of player for a newer mmo but the genre seems pretty dead
    I enjoy Mobile games, played Pokemon Go for a while, been playing Simon's Cat for a few months now, kinda fun, great time killer for when you are stuck waiting .. like in the Dr Office, for example.

    I also play Empires and Puzzles, been playing that for 4 months now, again, great time kill for when I am stuck waiting or just want to wind down as I laying in bed ready to go to sleep.

    Like any game, a mobile game can click with you and you end up just playing it for months, or just tapers off pretty quick. Different people will like different kinds of games.
    maskedweasel
  • maskedweaselmaskedweasel Member EpicPosts: 10,241
    Ungood said:
    hyllyh said:
    mobile game... never tried one (and not about to try by now) but really want to know what's the lifepan of one ...

    for GW2, i play time to time (event, festival) but i dont find it fun as it's time consumer, meta directed and a little... cheated :)
    not a surprise then, mostly of friends abandonned it since time too
    hoping like a lot of player for a newer mmo but the genre seems pretty dead
    I enjoy Mobile games, played Pokemon Go for a while, been playing Simon's Cat for a few months now, kinda fun, great time killer for when you are stuck waiting .. like in the Dr Office, for example.

    I also play Empires and Puzzles, been playing that for 4 months now, again, great time kill for when I am stuck waiting or just want to wind down as I laying in bed ready to go to sleep.

    Like any game, a mobile game can click with you and you end up just playing it for months, or just tapers off pretty quick. Different people will like different kinds of games.
    You and I often don't agree on things GW2 related but I agree with you here.  Mobile games also have a pretty long lifespan. Ingress, the prelude to Pokemon Go, launched in 2012, and it's still pretty popular and supported.  

    I usually play superhero games on mobile because it's hard to find them on console or PC.  

    Recently I picked up Guild of Dungeoneering on mobile, it's also on steam, but why pay 15 bucks for it and be stuck to PC when I can play it on my mobile device for 5 bucks and take it everywhere with me.  Great game too. 
    Ungood



  • BillMurphyBillMurphy Former Managing EditorMember LegendaryPosts: 4,562

    Scot said:



    nastilon said:


    What is depressing to me is that mobile games made about 500 million dollars for NC soft and traditional MMOs made 1/5 of that (if I converted the currency correctly).





    Why are we looking at Q3 3017 numbers and not Q3 2018? I don't see how you can look at such old data and evaluate it for what has happened now.





    I bet if you looked at Q3 2018 numbers it would be readily apparent why everything has transpired.




    And you still have players looking at the tide that is mobile gaming coming in and saying "this won't wet our consoles". 'Is it transferable to console' is now something they are thinking about for every PC and console game that gets released. They now make a mobile version spin off, but what would make better sense to cut costs would be to make one version that gets tweaked. Remember what happened with console and PC, the PC ended up taking inferior ports because the money was in consoles. How long before games start on mobiles and get remade for PC/console?



    It’s already happening. Look at the Switch Eshop. Also, look to games like Fortnite and Dauntless with crossplay across all platforms.
    ScotGeezerGamer

    Try to be excellent to everyone you meet. You never know what someone else has seen or endured.

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  • KothosesKothoses Member UncommonPosts: 891
    THe problem with Arena net is the same one that hit Blizz and the same one that hits a LOT of online gaming companies this year.

    GROWTH OR DIE is the mantra, but realistically with an online game as a service model it should be ok to just "Make a profit" but it is not. If you do not make more profit than last year you are a failure. This is in stark contrast to the way online games work.

    Look this wont be a popular opinion, but EA's Origin Premier model may be the only way to break this, instead of individual games being judged on individual and corporate financial performances they can be judged netflix style "Value additive" in that while the game may not tear it up on day one, its worth persisting with aslong as it keeps people coming back to an overall service.

    Daybreak and and EA are the only ones trying this so far, but I can see Ubi and Acti trying it soon, and it may be what saves our dwindling genre.
    Asch126TorvalARSoulSin

    Promoting thought a new Gaming video blog http://www.youtube.com/user/quinnthalas discussing games, gamers and the internet with gameplay footage as background.

  • ScotScot Member LegendaryPosts: 12,104

    Scot said:



    nastilon said:


    What is depressing to me is that mobile games made about 500 million dollars for NC soft and traditional MMOs made 1/5 of that (if I converted the currency correctly).





    Why are we looking at Q3 3017 numbers and not Q3 2018? I don't see how you can look at such old data and evaluate it for what has happened now.





    I bet if you looked at Q3 2018 numbers it would be readily apparent why everything has transpired.




    And you still have players looking at the tide that is mobile gaming coming in and saying "this won't wet our consoles". 'Is it transferable to console' is now something they are thinking about for every PC and console game that gets released. They now make a mobile version spin off, but what would make better sense to cut costs would be to make one version that gets tweaked. Remember what happened with console and PC, the PC ended up taking inferior ports because the money was in consoles. How long before games start on mobiles and get remade for PC/console?



    It’s already happening. Look at the Switch Eshop. Also, look to games like Fortnite and Dauntless with crossplay across all platforms.
    I thought it might well already be happening, just don't have that much of a finger on the pulse of the new stuff. If you are thinking about how a game will play on a smartphone, that must negatively impact the quality of what we see on PC's and Consoles.

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  • CynehildCynehild Member UncommonPosts: 81
    edited March 3
    The Asian market is very different, and it's growing at a much faster speed.

    These charts show how different the Asia vs. the West are in terms of platform & MMO types. I work for a market research company in Asia and from my gaming clients I realize that the the genre is not "dwindling". It's thriving, but definitely the West is not the main focus anymore.
  • slowpoke68slowpoke68 Member UncommonPosts: 541
    I tried many times to get into GW2 but never could, so not a fan of that game. However I really liked the management of the game and the company itself, so this is sad to see.

    The mobile numbers are of course horrifying and I agree with those who have said this is really bad news for PC gamers.
  • nyxiumnyxium Member UncommonPosts: 1,302
    This is a crying shame, GW2 is one of the few MMO's I still rate as excellent. My sympathies and good luck to the laid off in their new endeavors.
  • DarkEvilHatredDarkEvilHatred Member UncommonPosts: 134
    I loved GW2 when it first came out! It was very unique in many ways, but once I ran my first dungeon, I lost all love for the game. I hate the healing system. If they implemented a traditional healer class, I'd give the game another shot.
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