I’ve had some Conquest matches under my belt now. The battlefields are littered with the bodies of my corpse as I’ve respawned over and over again. Aye, the PvP in the game has not changed, at least, not from my view. Now there’s simply more people to zerg into balls of death and roll over small balls of the soon to be dead. Perhaps that’s the appeal in massive PvP! However, that’s never really appealed to me. You’ve brought us the massive zone to fight in, but you’ve left it rather barren as far as things to fight over. Oh, you’re pointing at an extractor, how quaint.
The extractors are about as useful as a wet paper bag in an avalanche. They take too long to claim, are FAR too easy to capture, and do very nearly next to nothing at all as far as battlefield control. The only differentiation of a controlled and uncontrolled extractor is the color, and whether or not a turret is shooting at you. They all squirt out resources over time, and you don’t need to be controlling them to pick them up. Their importance lies solely in the need to own a set amount to conclude a match, 60% for 10 minutes.
Oh! But I said they drop resources, so those are SURELY important, right? The Conquest match was designed with crafters in mind, and they even marketed this bit off right? Well sure, you can craft zone-wide buffs for your faction. You can build up little healing and damage turrets (like the ones from EI). But all of the resources in a match are shared with your team, so unless you go out and collect all of the resources needed to build one of these things, someone else probably will instead. The buffs… 0.5% faster movement, 0.5% more/less damage done/taken, 100hp. Small, not necessarily inconsequential, but nothing unique to each faction and they take a significant amount of effort to build up.
There’s no traditional resources required for the fighting either. My hopes of walking in with 500 carmintium and building huge battle golems was crushed. This could have been a huge, and necessary, resource sink for the rest of the game economy. Even more so if the various crafting recipes required lower level mats you would only get from starter zones. That could have started a whole new arms race of people farming for raw materials and hocking them on the auction house. Think of the reinvigoration it could bring!
Perhaps my mind works differently, but there’s so much damn opportunity here to expand the point of the game that have been squandered. Right now it’s just another activity to wander in and smack your head against for an hour or so. Why not take the cross server technology and use THOSE as factions instead? It could be a 3-way server battle instead of the mashup we get in these battles now. How am I supposed to build respect for battlefield leaders if I only get to see them for a limited time? At least on our home servers we have that handful of players that are dedicated to PvP and can run a reasonable war campaign.
I know, that sounds a little too much like another game that’ll be coming out soon. Perhaps it’s hitting a little too close to the competition or something. But you’re going to lose a lot of your PvP base unless you combat it effectively. I’ll keep holding out hope that the expansion is going to annul the Guardian/Defiant dynamic and re-orient the factions around the new three. That probably isn’t going to happen either. This doesn’t feel very well thought out as far as continuity is concerned, how the hell do these new factions fit in anyway?
Maybe the expansion will fill in these blanks.