Killing for the sake of killing only goes so far in any game. In my humble opinion, killing players for an endless amount of time for the sake of resetting the playground in neither persons favor appears to be a grind on the path to the last few bits of progression oriented gear. What alleviates the tiniest amount of grind anxiety is the spattering of RR81+ greens, blues, and purples that come inbetween. The additional Scenario weapons that were add do nothing to alleviate any sort of anxiety as they themselves are a very deep source of it. We call it the Lolweapon grind when queueing for Reikland Emblem Factory, and for good reason.
WAR needs (gasp! someone making armchair development assumptions!) more than this. It is by far the best PvP MMO on the market, of this I have no doubt. As many of us have learned over the years, killing people in the face just simply cannot retain all but the most loyal of die hard fanboys (see my WAR blogroll, lol). While the population numbers spiked leading up to the RvR packs, they’re returning to normalized levels as we can ascertain from tracking Raptr, Xfire, Winkls Pop Mon (when it lives again) and extrapolating approximate numbers between the three of them. All the level increases and gear whoring in the world are not going to bring back the less hardcore players, because they’re simply not at level cap and probably won’t make it there any time soon. The post-Greater ward system and gear equivalency is missing from the game, making all the delicious casual meat run away in fear. Mmm… meat.
Personally, I would be more than happy to see a deep, complex, complicated, and meaningful crafting system implemented that is supplemented from said killing in the face. Gork knows we have more than enough RvR tokens and crap that drop from players already. Skulls, Ordnance, Resources, Medallions, Crests, Trophies, and other random gear. Give me a couple of your developer resources, and we’ll make a PvP friendly crafting system! Crafting and other alternative playstyles attract the casual gamer. Use that giant RvR loving head of yours and create ways to entangle casual activities with being a bloody smear under the boot of a RR90+ MDPS class. Surely there’s a way to git er done?
If only we had a neutral bloodthirsty race to come into the game and inject some PvE in our RvR. What if there were some kind of dungeon that was always RvR enabled in which both sides could enter at specific times, fight their way though a couple PQ’s and sub bosses, then finally meet in the middle to have a massive RvRvE boss battle at the end? Wait, what? Thanqoul’s Incursion? Oh… what the fuck is this mess? They skipped right to the end! What is up with these lame boss battles? They’re hardly even bosses! Right. Someone go grab the whiteout, this simply is not going to work. Okay, I’ll stop beating around the bush here, TI was done badly on quite a few levels if you follow my design. With this, I am unconcerned, I’d much rather come up with new ways to do it. Mostly, expanding the shit out of that tiny network of tunnels. Make it the size of Bastion Stair, and we can start talking.
Take fer instance the Sentinel dropping Skaven Tunnels for Order. Nice long linear paths full of mobs that are happy to roll over when you thwap them on the nose with a rolled up newspaper. Have Order start on one end, thwapping happily away, and Destro start on the other end. It’s a race to the crossroads where the first team to get kill X times unlocks to boss room and gets a X minute headstart on the battle. The first X minutes is a full-on boss fight where they’re relentless like normal meaning an obscene amount of hit points, a blink-and-you-die party wiping move or two, with some jump-on-these-blocks mario style mechanics to boot. After a set amount of time ticks down, the boss goes into gimp-mode and the opposing faction has a chance to run in and take turns pillowfighting! Imagine (you order players) how entertaining the fight where the Skaven is in the room with all the explosives would be with 6 Destro involved. Punt-a-BOOM time! Heh…
There’s not enough FUN about TI to make it a viable excuse, not to mention RR65 restriction and RR90+ gear. What casual in the world could possibly use that? Hell, I play DAILY and I can’t use that shit. Granted I’m also a notorious altoholic, but whatev man. Maybe if I’d be more inclined to the damn thing provided I’d had a couple RR80’s sitting around collecting dust all this time, that doesn’t mean it has to be boring! MOAR TUNNELS! MOAR MOAR MOAR MOAR! Making it queueable would go a long way to populating the damn thing as well, especially if the first half of it were PvE so people had something they were nigh guaranteed to accomplish before getting kicked in the noogs.
I wonder what else we could do to appeal to casuals. Perhaps, an Undercity in the Inevitable City, or an Apartment complex in Altdorf? DARE I SAY PLAYER HOUSING? Well, we already have a Guild Hall, and since guilds are getting gutted more and more each year having personal housing as somewhere to stash all of your Tome of Knowledge Unlocks ™ would be pretty cool. It really doesn’t need to be all that unique either. One theme per race. Different sets of unlocks automatically complete upgrades. You see one finished house and you’ve seen them all, but it’s another thing to add to a bullet list. (also, something to expand upon when you’re bored and shit).
Lastly, integrate Twitter already or something. You have the one of the biggest dedicated blog communities and it’s never really gotten love aside from some Herald posts here and there. Maybe dedicate a loading screen to the top 20 blogs (20.. that should get me in there somewhere… I think). Oh, and one more thing to attract casuals. Boobies.
That is all.