As yesterday’s feature patch announcement was a fairly small one, I decided to wait until today’s information to write about it, and just group it all together. The new features that had info about them released over the past few days were mainly quality of life changes, but good ones to hear about nonetheless.
Yesterday’s post mostly mentioned improvements to social play within the game. There really wasn’t a whole lot that was mentioned here; one of the things it did go into was a feature that will allow guild leaders to see when members have last logged in. As a guild leader, I do very much like that feature being added; it is one that should have been in from the start, but late is better than never. I also hope that it is the tip of the iceberg in what they will eventually add in for guild leaders to work with; there’s a lot of functions that we currently lack that I’d love to see. Also mentioned are upgrades to the LFG tool, including adding in WvW channels, and the ability to specify the group’s main language – something that will be handy for players on multi-language servers. Last is a mention of support for guild members and other changes to reduce griefing; this is something I’m curious about, there are no details on it yet. Soon!
The heft of today’s news came from the first post released, talking about account-bound restrictions. There are several major changes that they are making here, all of which I am very happy for.
The first one I’ll mention is that world experience is finally going to become account-bound. Now, I don’t WvW a whole lot, but wxp was added in around when I was doing map completion there on my ranger, so by default my ranger gained levels fairly quickly early on. As a result I basically only WvW on my ranger, because she’s got the highest WvW rank, and hence the most points to play with.
Most of my other characters have at least a few ranks, though, and most of my 80s are somewhere between rank 5 and 10, but my ranger remains the main there. With wxp going account-bound, all of my characters will benefit from the time I’ve spent in WvW and (more often) EOTM, and at the same time she’ll benefit from the ranks scattered around my other characters. And hey, maybe I’ll actually be able to go into WvW on my mesmer – you know, my main who has a commander pin – and not be hindered by my lack of wvw ability points.
Now, the bigger one. Legendaries and ascended items are no longer going to be soulbound on use, but rather will remain account-bound. I was excited a few days ago with the wardrobe making legendary skins account-bound, but now I can pass my weapons around my characters as needed! That is an amazing change that I’m really happy about and have been wanting for a very long time. Not only can I put my Bifrost’s skin on a staff for my mesmer or necro, but I can take the staff itself and give it to them if I want. This change is also what has me finally considering doing some ascended crafting – I had held out for so long because the price wasn’t worth the tiny stat boost. But if I can share the items between all of my alts…it suddenly becomes so much more worth it. I probably won’t still bother with armor, but if I make just a few weapons, I can essentially use any alt I want for Fractals.
Also, I really must say, all of these changes that are making things much more alt-friendly are great.
The last thing that was mentioned today were a few more small things, that will have impacts on the game’s economy. Trait resets will now be free, but with the changes to traits that were mentioned last week, this one is far from being a surprise. Armor repair costs are being removed, which I think is great. I never liked repairs having a cost; it was a gold sink, but a not very effective one, as it punished newer players while being a non-issue for people who have played more. Waypoints are a much more effective goldsink in the long run. So I’m glad to see repair costs go. Since that way of removing money is being taken away, the amount of gold earned from events and from champion loot bags is being reduced.
Now, gold being reduced from events is a bit annoying, as you get a trivial amount for that anyway…but with so many other ways of making gold, it’ll wind up to be a minor change. The gold reduction from champ bags I am totally okay with. I don’t see it being a major change to the game’s economy, but it will turn into a small nerf to the champ farming trains, which is fine by me. I don’t like what champ farming has done to the game and the economy, so anything to try and get it back under control is a good thing, even if it will just be a small thing. There are other changes I’d like to see made to champ bags, but I’ll save that for another post.
The last note is that there will be adjustments made to the Mystic Forge, to give more variation to the stuff you can get out of it. Precursors, however, will not be touched. So basically Zommoros might be a bit kinder…unless you want a precursor. Then you’re still screwed.
(I joke. I got a precursor from the Forge. It just takes insane amounts of luck.)
We’re now two-thirds of the way through the new features announcements for the feature patch, and so far everything’s shaping up nicely – just a few more days to go now.