Guild Wars WvW has just seen the beginning of the first ever season, where servers in the EU and NA are split into three different leagues of 9 servers each and matched up over 7 rounds. A sever wins 5 points for coming first, 3 for second, 1 for last in each weekly round. The winners, the one with the most points, in each league get an extra reward. The idea was to drive competition, get more people involved and up the rewards for victory in world versus world.
So that’s the bones of how the season was supposed to work in theory. How’s it played out now that we’re into round 2?
Queues; queues everywhere!
Well, the real main problem is that it has attracted more people in to world versus world. I’m not a hardcore world versus world player, but I’m not a random wanderer either. I pop in fairly regularly and coordinate with other players where I can.
Hardcore players have moaned endlessly this week about the sea of ‘newbies’ swamping the servers, encouraged in by the promise of rich rewards. Frankly, more players is nothing to moan about – make sure you include them and help them gain experience and you’ll be rolling over the enemies in no time! The real problem of this is that the servers just can’t take the extra numbers.
Before season 1 started there were long queues to get in to world versus world on the top servers, but now the wait can be upwards of 4 hours if you’re unlucky (that’s the most I’ve come across in my server at non-peak times in the EU gold league). Even in the lower servers, previously blissfully free of queues, are now facing queues much more. Anet slipped up a bit here, encouraging more people on to world versus world (which in itself is a good principle) but without having the technical capacity to support those numbers. I just want to be let in!
Anet need to up the capacity of their world versus world servers. Encouraging more people in to world versus world is great, but only if you can support those numbers. There should only be queues as a way of balancing out the numbers between servers in a match up, but currently all servers at all times have queues and that’s not good for gameplay.
The plan to combat these queues is to introduce a new map to the current world versus world world, taking it up to 5 maps in total (a very early preview shot of which I’ll put next to this). Unfortunately, its looking like this could be anything up to a year away – so although its progress on improving world versus world its seasons away yet.
Dirty fighting is probably the best way to sum up the gameplay so far, and that’s not meant in a negative way. The fighting has been crafty – and that’s a good thing.
On my server in particular there have been very loud voices crying conspiracy – that our opponents had spies in our server reporting on our movements or that they were working in alliance against us. Frankly, if they were that’s a good thing; although its more than likely just shrewd commanders on our enemies parts making a good decision to make us take the brunt of their force for the first part of the season.
This is the kind of fighting and strategy I want to see more of in world versus world, and it helps self regulate the rankings as well which is a good thing.
Unfortunately, although the strategy seems to have been upped by the season starting, the tactics have stayed very much the same. Blobs rule the maps, and in the case of my server roamers are discouraged. Servers still use the same old tactics and do not adapt. In my server’s case the tactics have made no sense given the strategy used against us, we need to defend more but our commanders stubbornly refuse to defend or even leave scouts around – seeing it as a sign of weakness.
I really wished that the season would have forced a change in my server’s tactics, but it hasn’t, and judging from the hardcore world versus world response to our crushing defeat at the hands of strategic and tactically superior enemies – I doubt it will change during the season.
In fact, that’s a problem that the season has caused on my server, I can’t speak for others. Elitism has broken out like a plague, fingers are quickly pointed at ‘PUG newbies’ ruining coordination or at the enemies for playing ‘dirty’. These attitudes are unconstructive at best and damaging to the community spirit at worst. Its got to a stage where I despise the world versus world community on my server, so I will be looking to move elsewhere.
I’ve started looking at places to move, but if anyone knows of an English speaking EU server in the Bronze league that would like to see a Digital Salad helping them out and having fun along the way, then let me know!
Digital Salad – https://lifeasadigitalsalad.wordpress.com