GW2: Disconnected Ramblings

I finally finished the Heart of Thorns story today. The last chapter’s flight phases were a humongous PITA between 250ms latency and having to replay a considerably lengthy fight of multiple phases if one failed to dodge a single hit while in the air.

Granted, I voluntarily chose to make it harder by deciding not to group up for this fight.

But I just found it nigh impossible to find a reliable means of dodging said hit, the hitboxes just didn’t feel or seem right from one’s gliding camera angle. I tried strafing with lean techniques, speeding up and changing vertical angle with said lean techniques, stealth dodging and it all seemed 50/50 as to whether it would work or not. I suspect the distance traveled by the object which hits (oh, how roundabout we must speak to avoid spoilers?) is just too short for our laggardly latency to react to reliably.

The only thing I didn’t try was undeploying the glider to drop and redeploying it because duh, that’s nigh guaranteed failure at our kind of ping. I’d just crash feet first into the floor, which is the equivalent of lava here.

Anyway, it was a mixture of sheer dumb persistence, a little luck and developer tweaks (they put a second essential object on the other side, where the floor hopefully has not fallen away and left you a flying unreachable essential object – assuming it didn’t glitch out, at which point you just have to die and try again and hope it’s there this time) that got it done.

Also, Canach. Canach is my bro. If I got lucky enough to evade the first two hits of the stupid flight phase, but got murderized out of the sky just as the phase is ending, my bro braves a ridiculous amount of shit in order to rez me while I’m downed. I narrowly scrape through the bloody aerial phases a number of times that way.

Glad that’s over. I liked the ending. I got to do something that felt rather appropriate on a Hero’s Journey sort of narrative, while satisfying some meta player urges.

While watching the cutscene, I couldn’t help but think back to Scarlet and “Someday you’ll see. Tyria needs me.”

In other news, can someone please explain to me what “antisocial” means in an MMO context?

I’m starting to think that it’s a blame-others phrase slung around by people who either don’t have the time / priority to invest socially into an MMO (but would like to, because nostalgia) or a euphemism for “Woe is me, no one is willing to help me get what I want done at this very moment NOW, or magically reads my mind to know that I am lonely and want someone to talk to.”

By nature, I’m quite a lone wolf.

I enjoy soloing mobs the Bhagpuss way a lot. (And throw in lots of shameless harvesting/gathering and selling, because ka-ching.)

But by my count, I’ve done -so- much socializing in my MMO of choice that I find it hard to understand when others claim it feels friendless and antisocial.

Random example:  the past weekend has been spent in a Teamspeak filled with 120-130 people for hours on end. I don’t talk but there are plenty of others chattering away. We’re practising / trying for world first on the Tangled Depths meta event, which seems to be a mite overtuned on the early days of Triple Trouble Wurm sort of scale. Said meta event happens every two hours, so there is at least one spare hour of time in between, before set up and preparation of groups and all that.

You can see every range of social and asocial behavior going on. People have the freedom to AFK for that one hour, some in a big clump at the waypoint and some hiding away alone in corners, while others choose to group up and “explore” the map that way, aka beelining from one marked point to another following the one guy with a clue as to where he is going. Still others choose to solo explore and spontaneously come together for events or just when crossing paths. Some talk in say chat, some talk in Teamspeak; some talk constantly, some sporadically and others not at all.

I have helped two guilds claim their guild halls, aka group sizes of 20-40+. I tried a guild PvP mission, aka group of 5. I did a fractal, aka a PUG of 4 other strangers. I ran into random people while on my solo wanderings about the Heart of Thorns maps and helped them, rezzed them, communicated or coordinated with them to defeat (or make relatively good tries on) at least three separate Verdant Brink night time champions multiple times. I joined others asking for help at hero points, I start soloing hero points and sometimes someone joins me spontaneously and we get it done…

…I’m not even -trying- to interact with anyone here. I just keep bumping into them. (Or they fall down at my feet and it feels bad to walk away without Fing them up.) Halp?

Finally, really quickly, a discussion on MMO spoilers.

I get the spoiler thing. I do. I don’t want to be spoiled myself, so I don’t open stuff marked with spoiler tags until I’m done with whatever it is.

But here’s something I still don’t get, that maybe my readers can help me with: is there an expiry date before something is no longer considered a spoiler?

If someone wants to talk about the ending to Harry Potter or discuss something re: past seasons of Game of Thrones, isn’t there a time when one should assume it is either public knowledge by now, or whoever still doesn’t know probably doesn’t care about it to begin with?

Do I have to spoiler tag what happens to Macbeth?

In the storyline context, Guild Wars 1 is ancient history by now. A bunch of heroes slay Abaddon. Kormir takes over. It’s known fact. It’s part of the timeline.

Sylvari are Mordremoth’s dragon minions. Used to be a spoiler. If you don’t know by now, then none of Heart of Thorns will make sense, especially when the dragon starts whispering sweet nothings to your sylvari character.

And so it goes. Time moves on. The story is going to progress and it’s going to operate based on what just happened in Heart of Thorns.

So… expiry date? When?

Aka, “Please please tell me when I can start discussing all the cool story revelations and sharing all the delicious screenshots without having to muck around with HTML formatting and spoiler tagging nonsense that I’m very very bad at.”

7 thoughts on “GW2: Disconnected Ramblings

  1. That last fight is probably easier to do solo than in a group of 2 or 3, in my experience, primarily because if the instance owner dies, they get teleported up to a sort of ‘holding cell’ while the others carry on, so obviously can’t be ressed. Moreover, the one time the group did actually beat the boss, we couldn’t end the fight because apparently only the instance owner can do that, and he’d died.


  2. There is no expiry date on spoilers. Period. Macbeth is a brand new play to someone every day. That person doesn’t know how Burnham Wood comes to Dunsinane. Unless they ask, or you’re their teacher, it’s not your job to tell them. And you’d be a crap teacher if you did.

    Cast your mind back to when you were fourteen or fifteen, sitting on the sofa watching a movie made before you were born. It’s tense, you’re emotionally involved, you can’t decide if the main character is really what he says he is… then your uncle walks in, takes a glance at the screen and says “oh I remember this. I saw it when I was your age. That guy’s really a double agent, they catch him right at the end but he dies without giving away that it was her with the red hair, can’t remember her name, who was feeding him the information all along”. That’s not suddenly okay because the movie is forty years old.

    BUT…that does not apply to discussion among consenting individuals. If you buy Sight and Sound magazine you know, or you soon will, that it contains a full plot synopsis of every movie out that month. Those aren’t spoilers, they’re facts in a journal of record. Discussing what happens at the end of the HoT storyline on a forum dedicated to Tyrian Lore would not be a spoiler. Context is all.

    Blogging is a grey area because the context is hard to define. We don’t really know who our audience is. We all drop spoilers about stuff all the time and no-one much seems to notice. It’s a fair bet most of the audience either already knows or doesn’t care. When it’s the current storyline that many are still playing through, though, I think the context is more like the kid on the sofa than the magazine buyer.

    I’m itching to discuss it all though. I haven’t done the last Personal Story chapter because I cannot stand those long boss fights and I’m hanging out until they nerf it some more. I have, however, done the big open world event and that really took me by surprise. Plenty to discuss there. As soon as someone else in the blog pack breaks rank and starts talking about it I’ll be in there but I’m not aiming to be the first!


  3. Spoiler the shit outta dat sucka haha.

    I think being in gw2, with specific groups has insulated you a little into how it tends to be outside of that bubble now. I consider myself a generally friendly, communicative person. I go out of my way to make conversation during dungeon runs, randomly help than talk to people and a lot of other stuff. But in a lot of other games it seems incredibly hard at times. Send an group invite to people obviously doing the same quests and nope – not accepted. Dungeon runs that are run in complete silence except for a few sarcastic remarks if someone stuffs up. Little to no open world action together. It’s tough out there yo…


  4. What J3w3l said, that’s one thing Guild Wars 2 does very differently from most MMOs. The level of random grouping that doesn’t involve queueing for dungeons in MMOs is pretty low in other games by comparison.

    I’m often way behind the curve on expansions and new content so reading about games can be a veritable minefield of spoilers. It may be “old content” for the majority of players but there are always people behind the curve. Just use a warning at the top of the post – no need to use fancy tags, but do avoid major spoilers in the title as I’ve seen some absolute clangers in forum post titles… 😉


  5. I’m not actually going to read your post yet because I haven’t finished the story, I just want to say that I am really getting tired of how buggy it is… and that is why I haven’t finished it yet. I keep getting bugs which make it impossible for me to progress. :/


  6. For spoilers expiration, I would hold off or maybe make a dedicated post inviting discussion for it, but with some big warnings in the beginning of the post.

    As far as MMO socialization goes, I am FAR more social in MMOs than in real life – GW2 especially. I have trouble relating to a lot of people in my every day life, so I leave much of my socialization to my guild and yammering at random people I bump into in games.


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