Guild Wars 2 previews May’s weird and massive balance patch

    
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Things you don't want.

Even as Guild Wars 2 busts out its brand-new forums today, ArenaNet didn’t want the renovation to completely overshadow details of the upcoming “major balance patch” that’s coming to the MMO on May 11th.

We’re a couple of weeks out from that patch, but you can go ahead and mentally adjust your expectations by reading through all of the notes. There’s a lot here; as the devs put it, “We’re preparing for Cantha by cleaning up longstanding frustrations with boons and conditions, as well as by positioning existing builds as new potential sources of alacrity and quickness in group play.”

Some of the changes include adjusted duration caps for boons and conditions, reworked boons, tweaking how Torment works (it now only deals bonus damage to stilled targets), a replacement for the retaliation boon, and a switch to how resistance works in regards to conditions. Reddit isn’t too keen on the changes to Warriors, Chronomancers, Revenants, and Soulbeasts right now, while the overall sentiment is that the changes feel random and scattershot.

YouTuber Mukluk has a solid patch rundown if you prefer your patch notes in video form.

Earlier this week, Guild Wars 2 promised more information about the End of Dragons expansion in a press event this coming July.

Source: Guild Wars 2
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Shane Baker

One thing that I never understood is why Anet announces these changes on their website with no like/dislike option and comment section. I feel like they would be able to recognize these issues and receive proper recourse if they only received direct feedback and criticism from veteren players on their website.

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Krzysztof Czajka

“go ahead and mentally adjust your expectations” – oh, don’t worry – I had none.

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Oscar Morejon

So its a standard anet patch? Changing things for the sake of changing them. Nerfing a trait because everyone used so its in line with all the other crappy ones because everyone was using it… like they did to Necro years ago.

I cant believe people expected otherwise…

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Bruno Brito

These are some of the most misguided changes i’ve seen on a patch note.

The Reddit had a great assessment of the Warrior change, and it’s pretty much summed up by:

“Warrior changes are so weird. Either I don’t understand something about the class or they don’t understand what they want to do with the class.”

As for my 2 cents: Most of these changes don’t fix a lot of issues within the game ( I’m going to address core specs here ).

Ranger: Outside of Shortbow, Rangers lack a dedicated condition weapon. Axe is not enough, it’s literally hybrid with a focus on power. Sword isn’t really feasible. Rangers in PvP are still relegated towards Longbow if they wanna do damage, more specifically Core Ranger.

Engineer: OCShot change is long overdue, so no kudos there. Engineer weapon selection is still pathetic, depending on Kits to achieve some spheres they can’t just by weaponry. Engineer’s entire mechanic is the toolbelt, yet Anet still refuses to rework Kits to become the class mechanic/weapon swap.

Necromancer/Thief: The reason why i put them both together is because i feel both of these classes are binary in existence. The Thief exists in this weird limbo were he’s both extremely strong and extremely weak. It’s capability for spiking and +1’ing is unparalled but at the same time, it’s dueling is dogshit. Thief overall is gimmicky, and has extreme reliance on Stealth, no matter what kind of build you make, even Deadeyes benefit from it. Stealth is on a terrible state in GW2, and Initiative is also a terrible mechanic that thank god no other class has.

Necromancers are Anet’s answer to the garbage boon/condition system. Necromancers existence is also extremely binary because they also exist on the same limbo Thieves do, where they are really fucking strong and really weak at the same time. Necromancer is one of the few classes who still is locked out of utility because of theme and function, and Anet knows that they are fragile, and buffs or nerfs will shape the meta because Necromancer is the main controller of how the Boon/Condition System works.

Elementalist patchnotes still only caring for Weavers and Tempests, not a single mention of Core, etc etc.

Sigh.

Also, LOL at the name changes. For fuck’s sake Anet, you got more pressing changes to make.

Quick Edit: The TL;DR of how Anet is really bad at balancing can be seen by Warriors: Wanting to make other traitlines beyond Discipline useful, then nerfing them and making Discipline mandatory for 10-man content is actively funny. No one will drop Discipline for anything, lol.

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McGuffn

I never played the alpha/beta before they changed it but I still think splitting damage into power and condition was one of the worst things they did to this game.

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Bruno Brito

I started playing at launch and the split was already there, we only didn’t had good markers about what was what.

A lot of the issues with this game is design-focused tho: Boon/Condition, Power/Condi damage, terribly designed weapons and stats…

I don’t know why they just didn’t improve GW1, honestly. Make GW2 just a GW1 with better open world, graphics, more races and lateral systems. This game is a piss-poor downgrade when compared with games that allow you to build how you want.

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styopa

I wish I could just give you more than a ‘thumbsup’ for that.
More importantly, I wish I could send it as an engraved letter to Anet.

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Bruno Brito

I still ask myself how is it even possible that a company of devs that actively play the game don’t seem to understand it.

Then i remember one of the devs played Bearbow, so welp.

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Captain Blood

With that change to ‘resistance’ using Pain Absorption is gonna be funny while running Legendary Demon Stance on Revenant…

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TomTurtle

Mesmer downed state skill 2 will no longer randomly put me in further danger. Hurray!

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Greaterdivinity

Eyyyy, the mantra change is solid. I was one of the, “Pretty much never use the final charge” types, and also the, “Oh crap, I forgot I changed zones and need to re-cast them all!” types. Glad they finally acknowledged that it’s fundamentally pretty awful design like…3+ (not clue how long they were there for mes) years after the fact at least. Better late than never?

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Atryue

As a Warrior main, I totally agree with Reddit’s assessment of the Warrior changes.

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Dug From The Earth

Conditions and boons in this game have been a mess since launch. I dont see these changes fixing any of that. Its just shifting around the mess thats on the floor.

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Holden Nagata

as a guardian main I’m actually excited to see the retaliation and resistance changes. chronos needed some balancing. I think these changes will make more sense as people play them through the summer, but it’s kinda wild to me that Anet is dropping a Cantha-prep patch in May then not giving us any substantive info on it until July…

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Eamil

Wasn’t Guardian survivability heavily dependent on using retaliation properly? Condition damage reduction is nice but I remember my guardian being squishy as hell if I ignored retaliation.

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Greaterdivinity

You thinking of Protection (33% stacking dmg reduction) or Aegis (block charge)? Retal only ever reflected direct damage back at the attacker, it never reduced damage.

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Eamil

Yes, I was confusing it with Aegis. Not sure how I managed that.

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Greaterdivinity

You’re not alone, I had to double check the names since I could hardly remember which one was actually which : /