Vitae Aeternum: The cold water splash of New World’s Amrine Excavation and early game dungeon mechanics

    
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Old world.

Could a single poorly designed dungeon encounter kill a whole-ass MMO for me? I didn’t think it was possible, but then I entered the Amrine Excavation in New World and had my eyes opened up to a whole new universe of disappointment.

Up to this point, I was genuinely enjoying myself and was excited to see what this game does in instanced content. It had such enjoyable open world content that surely the dungeons would be just as much fun, if not moreso, right? Well, no. As a matter of fact, I dare say that the devs were not thinking too clearly when it started to make dungeon content.

If that video embed above doesn’t give you an idea of what I went through (or you just don’t feel like sitting through an hour and a half’s worth of footage), let me try to summarize the whole experience. Going in to Amrine, I felt as if I had built myself up to a fairly decent tanking spec: I had the right equipment, I had what felt like the right sword and shield skills, including at least one that generated threat, and I even had a couple of levels over the dungeon’s base level requirement. It seemed like all of the pieces were in place for me.

The problems started to show themselves almost from the very onset, when I had a difficult time forming a party. See, New World doesn’t have any party finder functions or ways for PUGs to form up through a UI, meaning I had to revert to that old timey tradition of begging for help in a shout channel. Incidentally, I had asked for help from those in my guild, but nobody seemed able to answer my plea, which is disappointing but understandable. I keep weird gaming hours. After a bit of time, myself, my best friend Britarnya, and a third person who happened to be nearby formed up our group.

This brings us to the second problem and what probably should have been a warning flag. Our third person said that we should have a party of four or five, but the dungeon had a minimum requirement of three. Would having just that minimum truly be that bad? Could it be that the suggested number of people was just a suggestion and not a specifically designed rule? After another wait, we all three agreed to try and find out.

From the moment we started to engage mobs, the problems just worsened. My rotation and skills seemed to stop mattering as enemies ran from party member to party member, spreading out and dashing around like mad while I tried to give chase and herd everything together. The aggro table was absolutely all over the place, making fights less controlled and interesting and devolving them into a series of Benny Hill comedy chase sequences. The few times I was able to corral enemies, it felt good, but that was few and far between, and even when I felt like I had established aggro, after a certain point the DPS members of my party started getting run down, and the chase sequences started anew.

I also don’t really know what was a boss and what wasn’t, except for when I started to swing and saw an absolutely massive health pool to whittle down. The boss enemies didn’t really stand out in terms of design, and I’m not so sure there were a lot of mechanics that we ran into during their fights that made me nod knowingly and understand we were in a boss fight. There was one ghost thing that had some lines of ghosts to dodge, so maybe that was the extent of the mechanics we were being shown, but ultimately the bosses of Amrine just were like regular mobs but thicker.

On top of that, the whole damn thing was laggy as hell. I was seeing messages typed by everyone in chat bubbles for at least two or three seconds before I saw them in the chat box. Maybe even longer. Combat didn’t seem to suffer from lag too much, but communication was challenging and there was one weighted platform “puzzle” that seemed to not be working correctly because of the lag, I suspect. For a while, we thought that two people needed to stand on three different platforms, which literally didn’t add up until the instance we were in started to appreciate that one person was standing where they needed to be.

It all culminated in a final, grand finale of failure involving some big hulking troll dude who did nothing other than big smashy attacks and constantly summon adds. Once more, nothing I did to draw and keep aggro mattered, and the amount of damage and adds coming out in the fight meant we were slowly being slaughtered, which pretty much affirmed our third person’s note that having only three players was death. Someone during the broadcast even mentioned in chat that the final boss would be impossible.

Everything about this run was infuriating and frustrating and not fun. And it was only well after we elected to quit and I spoke with some others that I realized another mistake: I didn’t slot a gem that helps with generating threat. I’m not a stranger to gem slotting equipment in MMOs, but there was no tutorial that brought up this whole thing that I ever recall playing, and gems have been up to this point such an absolute rare occurrence that I figured it’d be pointless to use them until I neared endgame levels anyway.

To Amrine’s credit, the actual dungeon itself was visually stunning and wasn’t laid out like a tunnel that moved from boss room to boss room. I also was able to feed Barkimedes the dog his bones that he deserved. And I still contend that New World is a fun game overall in the open world, with crafting and gathering and leveling hooks aplenty. But as much as I hate to focus on the negative, especially since lots of people are already doing that, I can’t really muster the effort to fire this game back up again.

Amrine Excavation may not have killed my interest in New World, but hot damn did it gouge out a huge wound in it.

New World’s Aeternum is a land of many secrets. In MassivelyOP’s Vitae Aeternum, our writers delve those secrets to provide you with in-depth coverage of all things New World through launch and beyond.
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There is a big thread in Feedback over on the NW forum regarding the story requiring you to do these dungeons, which also ended up branching into feedback within regarding the many issues with grouping pointed out in the above, as well as the issue of some of the group elite quests only allowing those on the quest to do them (and how impossible they are if you are alone in there) … so to anyone who plays New World who has experienced frustration regarding any or all of the above, please post in that thread! It’s the one with a few dev comments on it so far showing that multiple devs are keeping an eye on it and showing they fully understand the feedback, based on their comments.

I wish there was a skip for the story required instance moments in the main story. A lot of people are getting stuck either for grouping reasons or frustration reasons, which is adding another layer of frustration to an already plagued current state of the game. I hope stuff gets worked out…

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Dug From The Earth

Most of the design decisions of this game dont come from people experienced in the mmorpg industry… despite their claims.

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Leiloni

See, New World doesn’t have any party finder functions or ways for PUGs to form up through a UI, meaning I had to revert to that old timey tradition of begging for help in a shout channel.

This is actually a plus for me. Most of New World revolves around community-building at endgame for both PvE and PvP content, and not only relies heavily on this but does so at the server level. Forming relationships is important and maintaining a positive server reputation is paramount to being included in endgame content (and being a jerk has, at least on my server, seen some people already be excluded from things like wars, or have their guild unsupported in their own wars – treat people like crap repeatedly and reap the consequences).

So things like needing to form your own parties works right into that cornerstone of the endgame. I do find personally that the Recruitment channel in game, along with asking guildies for help does the trick.

I’ve even noticed that typically guildies will give people a heads up that they’re going to need help with a particular piece of group content hours or even a day or so ahead of time, so the rest of us can set aside time to help them. For something like a dungeon that works well because there’s no urgency to do these as soon as they open up to you, so people like myself often set aside time to help guildies with those when we’re all available to do so together.

I was seeing messages typed by everyone in chat bubbles for at least two or three seconds before I saw them in the chat box. Maybe even longer. Combat didn’t seem to suffer from lag too much, but communication was challenging and there was one weighted platform “puzzle” that seemed to not be working correctly because of the lag, I suspect.

This is just a chat bug and not the game itself being laggy. If you, like me, removed “Global” – or any other chat channel I think for that matter – from your “Feed”, then you’ll see a few second lag. If however you filter directly by the “Party” chat or whatever other individual channel you wish to read, you’ll see those messages show up immediately. It’s a nice work-around until they fix this admittedly minor bug.

The puzzle thing is just a matter of all three players standing on those circular platforms at the same second, and if you do that it opens up the bridge. But you all have to stand directly on those platforms and hold them down together, as opposed to merely pressing them and leaving (which is why the dungeon needs 3 people but at the very least, but really is designed for 5).

I will also say that aside from making sure you have 5 players and are equipping your Carnelian gem, your healer could have been doing far more healing with a better build. So most of this is just down to newbie player stuff. The dungeon is still a challenge when you go in with a proper group/builds – especially the last one – but a more level-appropriate and fun challenge.

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Bruno Brito

Dungeon Finders aren’t bad. Crossrealm is. NW doesn’t have that issue. People won’t stop talking and building communities as long as the tools stay limited to the server itself.

Eliot Lefebvre
Staff
Eliot Lefebvre

Psst… cross-realm isn’t bad either. It’s about whether or not the game gives you things to do to build and foster communities, and that doesn’t come down to shouting for party members and hoping someone shows up.

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Bruno Brito

If you’re implying that WoW jaded me against crossrealm, you’re completely correct.

On that note, i actually love GW2 megaservers and i think megaservers should be the staple for older MMOs like DDO, EQ2 and LoTRO.

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Jeremy Barnes

Someone hasn’t had to form a group for well guardian..

a non-automatic party finder would be fine.

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Dug From The Earth

Curious. I see many people mention how having to find groups “the old fashioned way” is a plus and is “community/social building”, but their descriptions as to why always end there.

What exactly is so community building about positing requests in chat, then sitting in town doing nothing because you have to be focused on parsing chat requests (from other chat spam), and trying to put together a functional team? Its rare anyone is thinking at the time of the group forming, “This could potentially be my new best gaming friend!”. More likely people are just thinking, “I hope I dont get declined” or “I hope i get picked because I dont want to wait another 20 minutes to do this”.

Interviewing potential candidates for a team doesnt seem exactly fun or without frustration. Having to basically in game job interview people to make sure they are qualified to do the dungeon or not, or meet the needed spots on the team. Worse so, would be the times when you cant find anyone because no one is replying to the group requests. Again, im curious of how chatting specifically with people in regards to filling dungeons spots builds community?

You mention forming relationships. Thats cool. Ive done that with plenty of guildmates, as well as people ive run dungeons with. Here is the thing… I didnt form these relationships with dungeon mates BEFORE running the dungeon. I formed it AS we ran the dungeon (and often afterwards). This was entirely independent from our group being formed by a LFG tool, or manually via chat.

For me, at least, relationships are formed from the experiences I have with the people, not the method I used to initially pull us all together.

Raap
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Raap

If you believe Amrine was awful (which it objectively is), then let me assure you… the other 5 dungeons are equally awful, largely copy pasted layouts and mobs (they really love that ‘ancient’ building set).

And lets not forget that crafting the keys to enter these dungeons – which is a thing to put up with after you used up your quest-granted free keys – is by itself also a horribly grindy process.

But to end this post on a slightly positive note… The open world ‘elite points of interest’ are generally more interesting and replayable, and I would suggest doing those over these dungeons. Just do each dungeon once for quest progression and then pretend they do not exist… They might as well not.

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angrakhan

So I don’t want to make excuses for Amrine or white knight the game. Amrine is a mess. However I’ve run the Depths a couple of times and that expedition feels more representative of what the game can do. Bosses have actual mechanics and in general agro works like you would expect. Amrine needs to be brought up to that level. Right now Amrine is the expedition you just grit your teeth to get through.

None of these expeditions are 3-man. That’s on the author. If you ask that question in the help channel I’m pretty sure you’d get a response in under 30 seconds to that effect. Also, Google is a thing. Yes the text in the game says something to the effect of 3 players minimum, but that comes with a huge asterisk of assuming you’re all at least level 45. Anyway, your criticism on that front I don’t think is particularly valid. You ran a 5- man with 3 and failed. Shocker.

Lack of a dungeon finder is a valid criticism.

The mechanic of needing a carnelian gem in your sword is also something you can Google or ask in help, so if you weren’t running one that’s on you. Yes I agree it’s a dumb mechanic that could have been solved with a tank stance or something to enable taunts and increase threat generation, but it’s not a big secret that you need one and if you didn’t know that’s on you for not doing your homework. I came into the game initially wanting to tank and I was aware of the gen requirement from launch day. It’s not a hidden feature.

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Bruno Brito

The mechanic of needing a carnelian gem in your sword is also something you can Google or ask in help

So…to know it exists, you need someone besides the game to tell you?

Interesting. And that’s not a problem…how?

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Thanos K.

The game tells you what you need to know. If you hover over your abilities you will see the ones that will taunt enemies when carnelian gem is slotted. Sword,great axe, hatchet and hammer all have abilities that taunt and they clearly say so.

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Bruno Brito

I stand corrected on that, but it’s still a problem that you’re required to gear gems to be able to do something that your weaponset should do normally.

Eliot Lefebvre
Staff
Eliot Lefebvre

If you ask that question in the help channel I’m pretty sure you’d get a response in under 30 seconds to that effect.

If your dungeon says “required players: 3” but that’s actually a filthy lie, you have screwed up your design and need to take the game back because it isn’t done yet. Ditto slotting a gem to tank. It’s not about whether it’s hidden, it’s about whether it’s communicated to players by the game itself.

To put it more simply, this is the sort of thing that makes players just not do dungeons any more… and at that point, it doesn’t matter how easily someone would have told you the answer, you’re done. Good design involves being proactive and communicating these things before disasters rather than relying on people explaining them after the fact.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

Chris’ experience is basically the exact same experience in Amrine I had during the press tour in May, with a fully geared developer as our tank, down to the Benny Hill themesong. So… yep. It’s not Warhammer dungeon bad with mobs glitching off the walls, and it’s absolutely beautiful, but the group combat is a big messy yikes.

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Bruno Brito

If you need a gem-slot to acquire threat, and the game has threat mechanics, that’s incredibly poor design. You should be able to snap-threat with your spec. Gear should be an additional to that, not the entire make-up.

I will concede that 3-manning a dungeon is not a good idea, but Amrine is a level 25 dungeon. It shouldn’t require perfect gearing to acquire threat.

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Shane Sargent

I was going to come here and dispute the OP for what sounded like someone whining that the game was hard and didnt allow them to steam roll the content but after reading your comment here, it made me think.

I gotta agree with you here. As much as I am very much enjoying the game, this design decision is perhaps one that was either overlooked or not given much thought. If you have a threat mechanic, and you are creating content based on expected roles (tank/heals), then why is the ‘tank’ agro control mechanic soley based on gear?

My guess is that this is in part due to your weapons determining what role you play. If this is the way it has to be, then maybe more weapons need to have some sort of taunt perk and/or maybe the higher strength you have, the more taunt you naturally get.

In any case, yah, it certainly doesnt feel right

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Bruno Brito

Even if the weaponsets are the role, they should have taunt skills on one of their spells. I’m highly sure that Shield-Bash is a skill in the sword set, and could be used as a taunt without requiring a gem.

The more i think about it, the more i realize it’s a issue with the PvP-PvE split. Most NW skills are around the 12-20s average cooldown. Those are really lenghty for taunts. In WoW, taunts are on average i think, 6s. I think the Warrior taunt is 8s or 10s on classic? But that’s mitigated by Defensive Stance generating threat.

Even GW2, a game with no taunt mechanics, has threat defined by the highest armor/toughness character. The fact that New World artificially inflates difficulty by making gear what allows you to tank ( and i’m not saying in the way of defensives, i’m saying in allowing you to complete your goddamn spec ) is absolutely bonkers in the year of our lady 2021.

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Leiloni

This is a feature so that players can pick up those weapons, and use those skills, for things other than tanking. Many of the tanking weapons also serve a dual purpose as DPS weapons, so if they were all forced-taunts, that would break most of the DPS builds in the game. Take Berserk for example, which is the cornerstone skill in all DPS Hatchet builds, but is also an AoE taunt when equipping a Carnelian gem. https://nwdb.info/db/ability/ability_hatchet_berserk

Also in regards to Chris saying “There was no tutorial”, this is just flat out untrue. Chris neglected to read his own skills. Every single taunt in the game has this under the skill description on your skill tree:

Taunt Gem Compatible: If you have a Carnelian gem equipped in your sword, This ability cause a 6s taunt to all enemies hit. (Taunt causes monsters to focus only on you.)

or for example:

Taunt Gem Compatible: If you have a Carnelian gem equiped in your war hammer, This ability cause a 6s taunts when it hits. (Taunt causes monsters to focus only on you.)

It’s ok to miss it, many players miss things at low levels if they’re new to a game, but at least don’t blame a game for your own mistakes.

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Bruno Brito

This is not a feature.

That’s like saying that WoW taunts should only be avaliable when the tank gems it’s metasocket. It’s bad design.

Tank specs should not be complete through gemming. The spec should be complete through the spec, and the tank’s mitigation and defenses should be through gear. If that impedes DPS, then that’s doubly bad design because DPS shouldn’t be using skills that taunt, it’s that simple.

Here’s my solution: Either make a spec point in all tanking trees that remove the taunt, but the taunt stays normally because it’s a tanking spec, or if we’re so hung up on this shitty design, make a gem that REMOVES the taunt.

If you wanna play DPS with a gimped weaponset, then YOU go the long way and suffer through it. Why should a tank have to go through gear hell to make their spec when tanks already suffer enough already to gear as it is across the MMO landscape?

No, Chris shouldn’t have ran the dungeon with 3 people. Yes, he should die if he’s tanking with really bad gear. But the fact that he can’t even snap threat without a gem is ridiculous. That’s not something that gear should solve.

SPECIALLY considering that Amrine is a level 25 dungeon. IT’S A LEVELING DUNGEON AND A REQUIREMENT FOR THE STORY QUEST.

Bad.
Game.
Design.

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Dug From The Earth

100% agree.

To build upon the gem/threat thing…. the fact that only SOME of the weapons (especially melee) have actual abilities that taunt with the gem is just additional bad design. I feel like every melee weapon should at least have ONE ability that would taunt if you have a threat gem slotted in it.

Sure, give the “tank role perceived weapon (sword) the most taunts”… but give other weapons 1 as well.

Why purposely limit your game this way? Its 100% pointless.

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Bruno Brito

Wait, what? So, not only the tanking weapons need the gem to actually tank…but it’s only them? The other weapons can’t use it to tank?

Who the fuck designed this shit?

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Dug From The Earth

So you can put a gem in any weapon, which makes it generate more threat…

Tanks arent going to do much damage, even with 250% more threat generation, they still will often loss threat.

Thats what taunts are for.

Sword has 2 abilities (that when you have a gem slotted) taunt when you use them

Hammer has one.

None of the other weapons do.

So if you want to be able to actually taunt, you are limited to these 2 weapons. Threat alone is simply not enough to effectively tank in this game.

I had this crazy cool idea to make like a Frost Death Knight. Sword/shield+ Ice gauntlet. Figured id just throw the best threat gem in the gauntlet and my sword. Had this fun dreams of being able to pull a group of enemies with my Ice Gauntlet, drop some aoe ice abilities to generate some threat, and then switch to sword.

Wow was I wrong. Unless I spec all my points into Intelligence, the gauntlets damage+threat gem just enough enough to hold threat against any real DPS class. One fire staff blast will yank them away from me.

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Bruno Brito

This is incredibly stupid. The reason why tanks build offensively is because threat gets converted from DPS done. This is why tanks in GW2 are bruiser builds with enough DPS to help content but enough tankiness to take the hits and pull threat. This is why the meta in WoW classic is to pull up a ungodly ammount of damage as a tank ( fury-prot ) so it gets converted to threat, and your dps by extension, gets to go absolutely batshit insane without having to stop for threat, so content gets done quicker.

If the game is not converting tank damage into threat, then it’s incredibly bad design. If you need to gem for snap-threat mechanics, you lose dps, if you lose dps, you lose threat, if that happens, you start to measure fights by a means of “keep snapping threat back”. Snapping threat back means that your healers are more stressed, you are more stressed, and the entire field becomes a shitshow of threat all over the place and bosses dancing around, which not only is bad design, but it’s also a invitation for all kinds of bugs to manifest.

Why didn’t they just go for a goddamn tab-target class based MMO, and went with SWG’s system so you would have the class versatility? Jesus. Why the hell would a company like this reinvent the wheel and throw us this crap.

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Sleepy

I’d never really thought about it before, but reading this I’ve realised that I have actually dropped an MMO on several occasions due to a single poor piece of design. I think it’s the sense of unfairness that triggers it – coming up against something that just seems arbitrarily difficult, out of line with what’s come previously, or designed to make you fail/rage.

GW2 making Chalice of Tears part of the ongoing Return To… events made me drop the game for a good six weeks.

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aYates

Yikes! I was thinking of going tank..
I did hear people saying in chat that you need those gems, so maybe give it a 2nd try with a full group.
As far as PVE goes, which is my focus, I’m trying to keep my expectations for NW in check. Besides fixing the bugs/dupes, which should be priority #1, they need to work more on the PVe content if they want to keep a large part of the current player-base around.

At this point, it’s not even close as good of a PVE/dungeon/Raiding game as WoW/FF14/ESO/etc. etc. and probably never will be.

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ghoulas

So you went into a 5 man dungeon with 3 people of which one was a random, you did not have full tank spec (you did not mention aggro gem in weapon so I assume you don;t have it) and it’s a developer fault you had a bad time? I will tell you to skip later dungeons as you will get beaten with that kind of gameplay.

(Edited by mod to remove ad hom. Please review the commenting code. P.S., there’s a whole paragraph in the article about the aggro gem.)

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styopa

If that’s all you got from this (setting aside the shitshow cascade of gold dupe and bug announcement articles)….well, I guess even astroturfers need jobs, right?

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Sleepy

I will tell you that I got something out of Chris’ article and enjoyed reading it.

Your comment? No so much.

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Bruno Brito

you did not have full tank spec (you did not mention aggro gem in weapon so I assume you don;t have it)

Show me one MMO where you need threat gems to make your tank spec work, besides New World.

ONE. I’ll wait.

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ghoulas

This is specific mechanic explained in the game. It’s great as it gives you flexibility in builds. Do you argue that you need specific class to tank in other MMO’s?

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Bruno Brito

This is specific mechanic explained in the game.

Irrelevant.

It’s great as it gives you flexibility in builds.

It gives you absolutely no flexibility because it forces tanks to roll a specific gem to tank. So, the “offensive tanks” that exists in other MMOs ( fury-prot classic warrior for instance ) take a back seat.

You can say that crap because you probably play as DPS. Tanks rarely have build flexibility because they have incredible dependency on boss mechanics and other players.

Do you argue that you need specific class to tank in other MMO’s?

What does that has to do with anything? New World has specific tank weaponsets. They’re just incomplete because AGS is terrible at it’s job, as the plethora of news about New World shows. Tanking sets should NOT need the gem. DPS sets should. It’s that simple.

If a TANKING SET doesn’t have a snap-threat mechanic, it’s NOT a tanking set.

That’s a design issue. Period.

Edit: And give me the one MMO i asked you about, where your spec is incomplete and only gets completed by gemming, besides New World. You didn’t answer my question.

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Thanos K.

Why do we need another game doing this? You keep saying this like its a crap system when its not. I will use my berserk for a major dps boost when i play a damage dealer or i can slot it with a taunt gem and use it for aggro.

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Bruno Brito

You keep saying this like its a crap system when its not.

I keep saying it’s a crap system because it’s a crap system. If your game has tank specs who can’t fucking snap threat, they’re incomplete. It’s that simple.

I will use my berserk for a major dps boost when i play a damage dealer or i can slot it with a taunt gem and use it for aggro.

Or even better: You can play your dogshit berserk since it’s a goddamn dps weaponset, and you can make the TANK WEAPONSETS BEING ABLE TO SNAP-THREAT WITHOUT DEPENDING ON A GEM.

Jesus Christ, it’s like talking Thomas Hobbes to a piece of bread.

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cursedseishi

I didn’t slot a gem that helps with generating threat. I’m not a stranger to gem slotting equipment in MMOs, but there was no tutorial that brought up this whole thing that I ever recall playing, and gems have been up to this point such an absolute rare occurrence that I figured it’d be pointless to use them until I neared endgame levels anyway.

Literally second-to-last paragraph in the article. Also, if a dungeon lists its requirements as minimum-3? That isn’t a 5 Person Dungeon. That is, in of itself, a dishonest representation of the dungeon–and something the community at large seems to understand given how everyone apparently says you need 5 for it despite the label saying otherwise.

If every piece of gear and skill needs to be fully decked out just to maintain a minimum level of threat? That is an issue. Something that is optionally tied to gear, like enhancements and gems and etc, should not be the make-it-or-break-it of a character. Like you blatantly claimed (and misrepresented) to Bruno, the gem’s are for ‘flexibility’ in builds. However that doesn’t sound like flexibility to me. If a random-drop ‘Threat Gem’ provides such a boost that makes threat-generating skills irrelevant, that’s not flexibility–that’s punishing prospective Tanks with poor luck.

It sounds like a haphazardly balanced system thrown together by a team largely unsure of how to handle or approach PvE–almost as though the original intent for the game was solely a PvP experience, perhaps.

It’s poorly designed. That’s it. Poorly communicated, and poorly designed.

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Leiloni

It’s listed as 3 because there is a mechanic in the dungeon that requires 3 players on 3 different spots in a room that together will expand a bridge allowing you to go further in the dungeon. So 3 is the minimum requirement because it’s mechanically impossible to complete the dungeon without 3 people. It’s something higher level players can and do go in with when taking friends and company-mates through the dungeon.

But like every other dungeon, this is a 5 man dungeon. The party size in the game is 5 people for a reason and a lot of content is build around that. It’s not really a new concept for MMO’s, especially if the community is telling you to go in with 5 – if that’s what people recommend, isn’t that what you should do?

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cursedseishi

No dungeon in any other game ever lists a minimum based off an one-off puzzle in it. They list the recommended ‘minimum’ of people at-level to complete the dungeon. In WoW that’s 5 people, in FF14 that’s 4 (despite the party size in it caps at 8). And in GW2, it’s enough people to perpetually stunlock mobs with rocks for its first dungeon.

And, as the first dungeon in the game? You cannot argue in good faith that people would know what future dungeons would list as a minimum and that they’d know in advance for what reason and why.

None of what you said actually disproves the game poorly communicates its requirements. If I and a small group of friends, for instance, just picked the game up and reached this dungeon? Why should I not trust when the game itself states 3 for the Minimum? Sure the party cap is 5, but maybe 5 of us aren’t online. Maybe just 4. Most ‘casual’ players would shrug and go in without questioning it so long as they meet or just exceed the number.

And when they wipe and give up, that is on them then that they didn’t know not to trust the game in that moment? No. Something can absolutely be horribly designed and poorly communicated as an introduction to a major piece of content and not be an issue in or representative of later content. Guild Wars 2’s first dungeon is a uniformly awful slog and terrible introduction for people–whereas the second dungeon (the Mansion/Birthday one if I recall) is a much smoother and generally fun encounter.

That minimum of 3 does not matter to new players or first runs. And it doesn’t matter to higher level players because, frankly, they’d have already run the dungeon and would know the puzzle mechanic needs 3 in advance. Listing the Minimum off the bat does literally nothing for anyone. And yes, you COULD ask the Chat if you need more than 3… Or, more simply, Amazon could simply hotfix the Minimum to 5, with a note saying its puzzles require 3.

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Bruno Brito

owever that doesn’t sound like flexibility to me. If a random-drop ‘Threat Gem’ provides such a boost that makes threat-generating skills irrelevant, that’s not flexibility–that’s punishing prospective Tanks with poor luck.

This is actually a common DPS argument. Tanking builds across the MMO landscape are incredibly tight because they’re built for the specific boss mechanic and the dependency of tanks on other players, specifically healers.

What allows tanks to have flexibility is overgearing, not that gems complete weaponsets. Here’s an example: The only way that Fury-Prot works in Classic WoW is if the tank overgears content. Fury-Prot puts an absurd ammount of DPS and threat, and the metagame changed to a place where healers are absurdly competent to keep you alive.

The healer meta is simple: A tank needs the biggest ammount of effective health ( the main tanking mechanic in WoW ) + 1 to survive a oneshot. If your tank has that, and survives with 1hp and gets healed, everything else gets invested into DPS that gets converted into Threat generation, because that allows the rest of your DPS in the raid to go absolute bonkers and finish the encounter faster.

It’s clear that this doesn’t happen in New World, if tanking sets need to gear accordingly to even have the capability to snap-threat. Your gear gets set in stone.

The impression these gems give me is that they’re made for DPS weaponsets to tank, which i’m not against, but the tanking sets should not have need for them, and should be allowed to equip other gems. Sword/Hammer players shouldn’t need to equip the gem, and their weapons shouldn’t EVER be designed with “but what about the poor poor dps players?!” in mind.

They have every other goddamn weapon, and hell, all sets have a dps spec on them. Use that. Jesus. Make a gem to remove the taunt and threat if you want to, but to make a tanking set incomplete just to create artificial market inflation and even more crafting dependency? Fuck that.

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cursedseishi

It’s just a… really dumb argument to me, as someone who largely focuses and plays DPS in games. But I also say that because I also end up tanking in a lot of the MMOs I do play or try–for one reason or another.

Protection Paladin in BC/WoTLK for guildies mostly as a pocket tank, though I did a fair share of pugs mostly up to Heroic content. Death Knight as Blood spec (when all specs were tank-viable) to a degree though not as much as Pally. Then the dozens of F2P games I’ve played… and FF14 too.

None of which ever had you reliant on something immediately outside your gear or available skills to be successful in tanking, even at higher levels of content.

Speaking purely from a perspective where I’ve tanked… story-critical content and the tier above in a lot of said MMOs? It’s just… so outlandish to imagine arguing that locking your only real method of Threat Generation to an optional item obtained via RNG as ‘adding flexibility’. Doubly so when that is made required for Story-Critical content that isn’t even at the level Cap.

If they wanted to make those skills have the option to taunt? Weapon Stance. Literally the easiest thing to throw in there. Toggle between ‘Aggressive’ and ‘Defensive’ stances that augments the effects of available skills. Then allow the Gems to further adjust or alter. Rather than treating Gems like… say… WoW’s early version of Inscription though, they’re basically treating them like the Jobs themselves. And last I checked, only Final Fantasy ever required equipping Job Stones for their games…

I don’t play NW, but kept an eye on it as it’s interesting… But dear lord the choices made at times with it. It reads like the worst of Guild Wars 2’s initial Dungeon/Party combat distilled into a concentrate and then mixed in with a smear of years-passed damp Vegemite.

I mean… How can they not implement a form of reliable Aggro management? Or notice how there is a clear deficit…? And that’s purely rhetorical, but… just… ugh.

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Bruno Brito

That’s because most DPSers are incredibly stupid, since they’re the majority.

And here comes New World, doing what most MMOs do, again: Screwing tanks and supports and healers in the name of DPS having it easier.

Here’s the thing about WoW: I harp on Blizzard a lot, but it’s undeniable that what actually allows you to tank better in WoW is knowledge and skill. On that front, they made a unbelievably good game. The reason why Prot Paladins are downright broken tanks in Wrath late-game is because Paladins can use their toolkit to snap-threat in ways that will allow your warlocks to go absolutely batshit. The only people who say Wrath doesn’t have Threat problems never tried to optimize ICC runs where tanks WILL get threat-dumped by incredibly powerful DPS.

WoW works on a simple meta: You gear in a way that you’ll always be at 1hp after the highest damage in the encounter. That’s simply how it is, it’s a game about Effective Health. Everything else is maximizing threat and damage so the encounter gets done faster.

Here’s how NW should have done: The tank sets should taunt normally. The characters should have a stance button that made them activate taunt abilities and threat generation. It should NOT be the function of a gem. People are saying that “hurr durr this makes builds versatile” but it doesn’t, because now, all tanks need this god-forsaken gem.