LotRO and GW

In my quest to ignore the insidious whisperings of WoW, I've been sampling some other MMORPGs, mostly the F2P games. LotRO and GW have come highly recommended, the latter so much so that many think GW2 will unseat WoW on its debut by 2012.

However, specifically with GW, I have started two characters and have never been so bored. The initial quests and the opening world are so banal that WoW totally outshines them. I'm really at a loss to understand where all the love comes from, but I'm willing to admit that maybe I haven't played enough and that I expect too much.

LotRO is better, certainly, and I've advanced a few characters, but it all feels a bit stale and, once again, I keep thinking of WoW. Yet I remember that there were many players even before LotRO was F2P who preferred it to WoW. And again, I feel like I'm missing something.

Any advice or suggestions? Heck, it may just be that I'd be bored with WoW at this point, but I don't think so. I'm really eager to see what fans see in these two games.

Thanks!

My advice to a new GW player is to start a character in Nightfall. The opening of Prophecies (the original campaign) is very slow. Nightfall adds the player controllable heroes which makes progressing much easier, levelling happens faster and zone design is more polished.

Something to note is that GW2 is going to be very different to GW1, it's almost worth treating them as entirely different games. There's plenty of videos of GW2 around that you can contrast against GW1. GW1 is also not an MMO (technically) while they've said that GW2 is one.

What I personally like about GW is how it respects your time playing it. There's no grind, unless you opt-in to it for optional mostly cosmetic or prestige things, there's no long-term penalty for screwing up that you have to climb out of, there's no travel time to go do something else in another location, there's no disincentive to messing around with a spec and trying things out. I'll also echo what MrDeVil909 said about Nightfall.

Something I'll say against GW is the huge mountain of knowledge that's there to learn, but it's being changed in GW2. Compare the lists of hexes and conditions to the 10 conditions and 6 boons you'll get in GW2.

It could also be that you prefer WoW, and there's nothing wrong with that. A lot of people have a lot invested in WoW, as they've been playing it for years and it's a good comparison point. However, other games are different and relish that, lots of people complain about "WoW clones". Play what you find fun.

MrDeVil909 wrote:
My advice to a new GW player is to start a character in Nightfall. The opening of Prophecies (the original campaign) is very slow. Nightfall adds the player controllable heroes which makes progressing much easier, levelling happens faster and zone design is more polished.

My problem is that Nightfall is $30 now, and I'm so underwhelmed with the game already (both my characters are lvl 3-5) that I jjust can't spend any more money on it.

As to travel time, I actually find the many portals annoying. I still feel like I'm running around just as much as in WoW, but with far less effect. "Ah, a generically beatiful forest...a lovely field," Problem is, I don't even know where I am, why I'm there or what is going on. It doesn't help that when I'm fighting a squad of baddies that NPCs walk through the scrum and hail me as if nothing whatsoever is going on.

But thanks for your advice.

At level 3-5 you (should be) still in pre-searing, which really is the prelude to the bulk of GW. The prophecies campaign really is a slow slog.

You're right, the Prophecies campaign is really slow and boring. Literally ANY of the other starting areas are much better. Even so, GW offers something very, very different from anything else. LotRO (and really, GW2) are basically WoW clones.

Not that that's a bad thing. I like me some LotRO. Great community. I just admit that I'm kind of sad that GW2 has so little in common with GW1. We already have a WoW. We call it WoW.

Natus wrote:
My problem is that Nightfall is $30 now, and I'm so underwhelmed with the game already (both my characters are lvl 3-5) that I jjust can't spend any more money on it.

As to travel time, I actually find the many portals annoying. I still feel like I'm running around just as much as in WoW, but with far less effect. "Ah, a generically beatiful forest...a lovely field," Problem is, I don't even know where I am, why I'm there or what is going on. It doesn't help that when I'm fighting a squad of baddies that NPCs walk through the scrum and hail me as if nothing whatsoever is going on.

But thanks for your advice.

Pity you didn't pick up the Guild Wars trilogy for $30, I kind of assumed you had and were trying to play it 'right' beginning to end.

I was totally green regarding MMOs when I picked up Prophecies, so I had no frame of reference. I've tried LOTRO, Eve and WAR since, but keep going back to GW because it's kinder on my internet connection and more suitable to my pick up and drop play style.

Playing Prophecies now really is a grind. Level 3-5 should still be pre-Searing as Scratched says, but the pace doesn't really pick up post-Searing either.

I hate to say it, but maybe the game just isn't for you. It seems very common with people who come from WoW in particular. It's too different, yet not different enough. And unashamedly 'gamey'

LobsterMobster wrote:
I just admit that I'm kind of sad that GW2 has so little in common with GW1. We already have a WoW. We call it WoW.

I was concerned about the GW2 changes myself, and still am a bit, but to be fair I don't think it's going WoW-alike. And the original will still be there.

Without wanting to turn the thread fully into "X vs WoW", ArenaNet seem to be trying quite hard to distinguish GW2 from WoW.

Scratched wrote:
Without wanting to turn the thread fully into "X vs WoW", ArenaNet seem to be trying quite hard to distinguish GW2 from WoW.

Agreed. Dont see them emulating WoW much at all from what i've seen.

Natus wrote:
My problem is that Nightfall is $30 now, and I'm so underwhelmed with the game already (both my characters are lvl 3-5) that I jjust can't spend any more money on it.

I just PM'd you a code from a Guild Wars Trilogy Trial DVD. It gives you 10 hours over 14 days to try Nightfall, Factions and the original (Prophecies). Start with Nightfall, if you still have time try the Factions start area.

I have been dabbling in GW again after a multi-year absence filled with more traditional MMOs (LOTRO, WoW, etc.). I'm finding myself getting into it again a bit. It probably helps that my account is pretty well decked out. After playing a while, I can basically roll across a map with a full complement of heroes, pets and minions. You can get a glimpse of what it looks like at the screenshot below.

IMAGE(http://img580.imageshack.us/img580/8763/gw040e.th.jpg)

In any event, as others have said, NC Soft refers to GW as a "cooperative RPG" rather than a true MMO. GW is closer to playing a (card) game of Magic The Gathering than a true MMO. It's about collecting and building decks of skills, but in the context of a cooperative MMO. GW2 will be more in line with a traditional MMO, and may be more in line with your taste.

Edit: I also currently play and like LOTRO, so don't take my post as playing favorites.

A side note for those who have GW, Halloween is going on right now, and you can get two hats!

DevilStick wrote:
Natus wrote:
My problem is that Nightfall is $30 now, and I'm so underwhelmed with the game already (both my characters are lvl 3-5) that I jjust can't spend any more money on it.

I just PM'd you a code from a Guild Wars Trilogy Trial DVD. It gives you 10 hours over 14 days to try Nightfall, Factions and the original (Prophecies). Start with Nightfall, if you still have time try the Factions start area.

You are awesome! Thank you. I do want to see what all the fuss is about.

DevilStick wrote:
I have been dabbling in GW again after a multi-year absence filled with more traditional MMOs (LOTRO, WoW, etc.). I'm finding myself getting into it again a bit. It probably helps that my account is pretty well decked out. After playing a while, I can basically roll across a map with a full complement of heroes, pets and minions. You can get a glimpse of what it looks like at the screenshot below.

IMAGE(http://img580.imageshack.us/img580/8763/gw040e.th.jpg)


That does look cool!

DevilStick wrote:
In any event, as others have said, NC Soft refers to GW as a "cooperative RPG" rather than a true MMO. GW is closer to playing a (card) game of Magic The Gathering than a true MMO. It's about collecting and building decks of skills, but in the context of a cooperative MMO. GW2 will be more in line with a traditional MMO, and may be more in line with your taste.

Yes, it's just that I've been bewildered how boring the opening quests are for Prophecies, without any lore or personality at all. The graphics aren't bad, and I like the classes, but I'm surprised the developers wouldn't jazz that up more. At least the Elven starting area in LotRO starts with a battle!

DevilStick wrote:
Edit: I also currently play and like LOTRO, so don't take my post as playing favorites.

Play favorites! Works for me!

Natus wrote:
Yes, it's just that I've been bewildered how boring the opening quests are for Prophecies, without any lore or personality at all. The graphics aren't bad, and I like the classes, but I'm surprised the developers wouldn't jazz that up more. At least the Elven starting area in LotRO starts with a battle!

In Prophecies, you are in a "prequel" area (called Pre-Searing) until about Level 6 or 7 (unless you know what you are doing and decide to rush through). NC Soft tried to create an idyllic world that you would miss once the real story line begins. Hint: see Sir Tydus in Ascalon and do the Ascalon Academy quest.

Compared to other chapters, that means the Prophecies gets off to a rather slow start in terms of story. On the other hand, there are folks that leave characters in the Pre-Searing and basically just hang out.

One other thing, the official Guild Wars wiki can be very helpful.

One thing I'll say from having travelled around for the Halloween quests, is that Tyria (the Prophecies area) is quite unimpressive graphically compared to the other campaigns. Overall all of GW is at a lower bar in terms of tech and polygon pushing, but they do manage to get it quite pretty in some areas.

OK, wow, that's certainly a difference! I need to play more, and I'm only Level 3 or so, but what a difference! Great models, interesting classes (Dervish), an actual tutorial cum storyline! Amazing, and I look forward to playing more. Thanks, Devilstick!

Dervish is a weird class. I still haven't got my head around it.

I loved my Derv. It is weird to juggle the enchantments, but a lot of fun.

I need to get back to playing again.

Natus wrote:
OK, wow, that's certainly a difference! I need to play more, and I'm only Level 3 or so, but what a difference! Great models, interesting classes (Dervish), an actual tutorial cum storyline! Amazing, and I look forward to playing more. Thanks, Devilstick!

IMHO, the game gets really interesting (from a gameplay perspective) when you have unlocked enough skills and secondary professions to use different builds in different areas. You can even run custom builds on your heroes. You probably won't get to that point in just 10 hours though.

Try to follow the "Primary Quests" and see if you can get to the Jokanur Diggings mission. That might be a stretch in just 10 hours of play, but I recall that being where the true "dungeons" began. Sort of like Deadmines in WoW.

I enjoy LOTRO as well - I happen to be dabbling in both LOTRO and GW these days. LOTRO is more in line with a traditional MMO (WoW style).

My take is... why choose just one? You can always dabble in GW *and* LOTRO.

I haven't played LOTRO much....so I can't say much about it. It's clearly a polished, well developed game...for some reason it just hasn't stuck.

I have been playing some Guild Wars of late...and I've found the Prophecies campaign to be a bit of a slog. At least until the Searing, then the story line picks up. It also helps to find a class that clicks with you...I had 3 different characters of various classes for the Prophecies campaign, but the one that I liked was a Ranger/Warrior.

The others I got past the Searing, then dumped their gear and money into the Storage chest and deleted.

Factions haven't played much. Had an Assassin, dropped her because it has been so long that I forgot why any of her quests were important.

I had a level 10 Dervish in Nightfall, dropped him to for the same reason. Dervish is a class unique in MMOs, and worth exploring. Paragons are kinda interesting too.

I just rolled a Nightfall Warrior, mainly because the story line is the most interesting of all the GW settings so far. Will probably roll another Dervish at some point.

That's the great thing about GW...you can really experiment with classes and settings until you find one that works for you. With a common storage system, you don't lose your gear or cash progress.

One thing I find about GW and the GWwiki is that it doesn't really push you in the right direction. It pretty much leaves you alone to learn the game, and that can be good or bad depending on your inclination.

With the character building system they've got (take 8 skills, rather than access your whole skillbook), it's quite easy to make a bad and ineffective build, and it takes a little bit of involved reading and thinking to work out how things fit together. With how you can fully respec in outposts it's only a short term problem rather than a long term one (stuck into a spec or with costs to respec), and as you say, gives the freedom to experiment.