Looking Ahead: The LFG tool…

Guild Wars 2 Bookahneer's GeekwatchBy now we have probably all read or at least heard about Colin Johanson’s ““Looking Ahead: Guild Wars 2 in 2013” posting. In case you haven’t, go ahead and read it. There are some really nice pieces of information in there.

One thing I love and hate are dungeon finder tools. While I appreciate the convenience we got with World of Warcraft’s dungeon finder tool, I think I still prefer a game not to offer it. It’s true that instead of having to look for other players through chats and waiting for half an hour to an hour, those tools make it much easier as you just queue and get into the dungeon once the tool has found a group for you. At the same time, those dungeon runs had become impersonal and I’ve seen flames that I hadn’t seen back in WoW’s “vanilla days” where no such tool was available. Every group member had gone through the same: Reading the chat, answering in the chat, whispering every available person in the zone to ask if they wanted to come along. So when you finally had a group together, you did not want to risk losing them by being impolite or unfriendly. Okay, some people still didn’t care. But in general, it seemed friendlier. Also, as you had had to wait around while looking for the 5th party member, you just started chatting with the others and got to know them.

Hearing that Guild Wars 2 will get an “LFG tool” did not make me happy… until I saw Ramon Domke’s reply on the German GW2 forums. A word of warning: His post is in German. Don’t bother clicking the link if you don’t know this language. I’ll tell you what he’s writing. :)

Looking For Group Tool: This will be a tool that will make it easier to find other players for a dungeon, but you will not be put into a group and teleported to a dungeon. He mentions the tool helping you find an appropriate group for you, but you will still need to talk to the other players. He also says that it will help you find players with a similar goal: speed runs, players new to a dungeon who want to see the cut scenes, etc.

Magic Find: Nothing new about that. He’s just repeating what Colin said.

Item spiral: They want to do horizontal progression instead of vertical progression. So instead of gaining levels and making the high level armor obsolete, the game will offer you a broader variety of skills or weapons. – I assume when he says “weapons”, he doesn’t mean better and more powerful weapons with more stats. Maybe that’s a hint that pistol/pistol mesmer will be possible soon… *dreams* ;) Hunter’s Insight also talks about this… I agree that I would really love to see my engineer with a hammer!

Legendary gear: As Colin said, they are going to add convenience to legendary gear in that you can switch the stat combination on the item without having to transmute stats from another item onto the legendary skin. They do not want players to have a power advantage over those without legendary gear, though.

Trade skills: Valuable are those items that are rare. So they had to find a way to limit the supply. They’re hoping for a stable market without flooding it with cheap new materials. Also, as players can’t farm 24/7 for the new materials (due to its “once per day” limit), they will not further encourage botters.

Most of what he’s saying is stuff that’s mentioned by Colin. The part about the LFG tool was new to me, though, and I really liked seeing that explanation. It shows that they know what the problem is with dungeon finders like the one in WoW. So let’s hope the LFG tool will be a good addition without all the issues that dungeon tools can bring.

8 thoughts on “Looking Ahead: The LFG tool…

  1. Hm. I am not so sure it is a question of the tools. Due to circumstances I have found myself having to rely on PuGs to get dungeons completed and use that 3rd party LFG site. There were a few times we had trouble getting players to fill the group and yet there wouldn’t be much talk beyond the “I will see if someone in my guild is interested to join us so the group is complete”. While other groups that formed pretty fast there have been friendly and talkative people. Usually it is a mix of both those kind of people and those who seem to be completely mute.

    I admit to be guilty of being mute too. I am a quiet person in real life. This is even worse if I find myself in the middle of complete strangers that I am trying to figure out if I will get along well or not. And if it is a PuG, where I will most likely never see those people again, my incentive to talk and trying to form ties with them is even lower.

    So, yeah, it is mostly a question of the people in my opinion, not so much the tools.

    Out of curiosity, do you want to see an engineer with a hammer because of Torchlight 2? :)

    That would be cool to see. I also would like some drill kit for an engineer or something equally crazy!

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    1. I only know WoW pre- and post-tool. Pre-tool was single-server and looking in chats (no global one, even, so you sticked to the region the dungeon was in). And post-tool, you clicked a button and got teleported. I was never too chatty, but I said Hello and Bye, at least. Post-tool, the loading screen wasn’t even gone and the dungeon already started. People said neither Hello nor Bye generally. That is something I do not want to see, no matter what exactly caused it. :(

      I don’t need to discuss anything in-depth, but a little bit of politeness and friendly phrases is a must, I think.

      About the engineer: I didn’t even think about Torchlight. ^^ I had my engineer from Warhammer in my mind. I absolutely adored her (female dwarf) and she fought with a spanner. I guess it’s closest to a hammer in GW2. :)

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      1. I never had any experience with the Dungeon Finder in WoW. Closest to it was their LFG tool shortly before their first expansion (or was it shortly after? Hmm…). Besides that just PuGs in Lineage 2 where we had to shout in local chat looking for people.

        Anyway, I agree about the Hello and bye. At least that is something I do even if I spend the rest of the time between those in complete silence. And now that I think about it, I guess that is also part of why I don’t enjoy PuGs much. The people who don’t even bother to do that.

        Ah, I see. I didn’t play Warhammer Online besides a very brief trial. And it was on Chaos side too! So I didn’t know their engineers could use giant spanners to fight. :)

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        1. I’m getting all nostalgic thinking about WAR lately. Sadly, this game is in a really bad state and it never even was in a really good state to begin with. ;)

          I played Order because of a guild I’d found (which is now my second guild in GW2, although I hardly ever represent them). I preferred Chaos, but whichever faction has female dwarves is a faction I can live with.

          What I’ve always liked was getting into a PUG and getting to know people that ended up on my friends list. In WoW, that’s how I found a “level buddy” with whom I levelled to max level while we were on a PvP server. That was priceless! ;)

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    2. Three things made WoW toxic:
      1. LFG tool doing ALL the work: hit the button and be ported into the inside of a dungeon with 4 bots to help you out (they might as well be bots to many).
      2. Cross server with no global name. No one is accountable when you can hide so well.
      3. Competitive PvE outside of the tool. This is a big one – even back when WoW was polite (I was there, in 2006, when everyone was nice) there was still node, mob spawn, and faction competition. Even back in those days there was reason to get testy. So WoW players are not pre-trained before the entering a dungeon. They spend all their time competing in the open world, and then suddenly get ported into a space with 4 other random people and… continue to be competitive…

      GW2 is cross server, but we have global names. Friend or mute me, and you will be able to be my friend or ignore me no matter where I go in this game. If I start posting up that you’re bad to be around, I can start hurting your odds on lfg – especially if we both are ‘working the same pool: regularly running the same spot. And even if I cannot do much here, the feeling that I can matters more than the reality.

      The tool will still require you to do the work of communicating – they actually said this many months back in an obscure place somewhere – and that really does matter.

      And of course, GW2 trains us all to be very cooperative. From the get go in open world content, people learn that there are more perks to stopping to help out a random person than there are in passing them by or griefing them with a mob train.
      – And social conditioning carries though, even when everyone is silent in a dungeon… they are mostly “nicely silent”. :p

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    3. Another point on being quiet in runs.
      Some people are “know it alls” who will happily dictate all kinds of attitude at others.

      Most people are not – and often if you actually DO know it all for a place, there is a feeling of not wanting to seem pushy that can cause one to keep silent unless and until someone asks for advice.

      I’m finding this myself. Now that I have the Dungeon Master title – I’ve done every path of every dungeon – I find myself hesitant to open up with advice, and will let a group go off and make blunders before I’ll try to steer them (a few times this has revealed a better way to do things).

      A recent counter being that once almost everyone in my group piped in with “this is my first time here, anyone know what we’re supposed to do” I started talking (but my hesitancy to dictate left me giving advice on options rather than “do this or that”).

      – Nothing is more annoying than being in a run where it feels like someone there would be happier if they could just take over your keyboard, and is happy to let you know this at every opportunity. And I suspect many folks are quiet from a ‘fear’ of being seen as pushy.

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      1. That is a good point. I guess because those kind of people don’t feel annoying they never stick to my mind. The ones who are silent and still feel pushy (like rushing ahead and not caring about checking if people are following) are the ones who feel the most annoying to me. At least if someone complains and gets angry I know there is a person there that I can try to dialogue with. With someone that doesn’t even do that and just keeps rushing ahead, it just feels like they couldn’t care less about the whole thing or think the rest of the party are just bots to help them complete the dungeon.

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