Thinking about getting the game, but wondering about end-game content
So I am thinking about picking up Guild Wars 2, but I am worried there isn't a lot to occupy players once they hit the level cap. I'm used to WoW (and after years and years of it, I need a change, which is why I didn't get Pandas), so for me, end-game content is sort of an all-out loot grind experience, running high level dungeons to get powerful gear... which you usually use to run even more challenging dungeons for even more powerful gear. I'm also used to grinding PvP to get a different set of gear for that specific purpose. Obviously I don't expect Guild Wars 2 to have that kind of established end-game yet (it took WoW several years and expansions to get to that point, and at this point they are kind of working backwards...), but I want to make sure I have plenty to do once I hit the level cap.
My roomie used to play Guild Wars, and he still comes back every few weeks. He says that GW2 doesn't have a lot of gear to grind after, except a few cosmetic things, though there are some craftable high-tier gear sets that take months of dungeon grinding to make. But what about you really active GW veterans? How do you fill your time? What is the end game really like? IF you guys assure me there is a sustainable end-game here (and of course I will also level alts!), I will picking it up tomorrow. Thanks for the help!
First of all GW2 is about AS LITTLE grind as possible. Gear from dungeons are for looks only. You can easily craft or buy top lvl gear. Only reason to do dungeons is for money, if you are working on a legendary or you want the look of that dungeon gear.
End game for PvE right now doesn't really exist (unless you want to get every legendary) The real end game is in the PvP scope of the game. Unforunatly sPvP isn't as popular as Anet had hoped, but there are still plenty of folks doing it. Mostly people view World Vs World Vs World as the end game which is a 3way server PvP battle in sperate maps 24/7 for a week.
There is FotM, Fractils of the Mist, which is a continuosly repeating random dungeons that get harder the higher you go. This is right now one of only three ways to get Ascended Gear (which is a step higher in stats than Exotic, but only accessories exist as Ascended right now) the other ways to get Ascended are through Daily/monthly quests and the Mystic Forge.
Well, it just depends on what you like to do. I have been playing on my lvl80 for months... Like its been said, there are the dungeons. Each dungeon has its own unique set of get you can get as well as its own currency for obtaining that set of gear. It will take some grinding through those dungeons to get that particular gear. Also, there is Temple Gear which is at endgame. It costs ~250,000 Karma points to get the complete set of Temple Gear you may want. It took me since launch, plus holiday events to get that much karma and I actually just achieved it yesterday (I play only 2-3 days at most a week for maybe 2-5 hours though and I had a hiatus for a month or two so that will be shorten a bit if you play alot...). There is the grind of crafting for sure! Finding certain crafting materials can be a grind in itself.
Also theres the legendaries...that is the ultimate grind in this game. Let me begin by saying that the Legendary weapons have the same stats I believe as other lvl80 Exotic weapons you may get...correct me if I am wrong here, but I heard that each legendary weapon has some sort of unique special effect in battle. Not to mention they look freakin awesome and are EXTREMELY valuable because of the time needed to get one.
In order to craft a legendary weapon, you need ONLY 4 items (and if there are other ways to get certain stuff, dont be a troll and go crazy on me because I am merely cookie cutting this to point out to Alvas here how much of a grind it is to get a legendary): Gift of Mastery, Gift of Fortune, a specific 'gift' of the weapon your making and the specific precursor weapon to make the legendary.
Now...lets talk about these 4 items...lol For the Gift of Mastery by itself, you need to explore 100% of the world...you need to use 200 of your skill points for an item (after lvl80 you continue getting skill points...), you need 250 Obsidian shards and the only way to get those is with 525,000 Karma points from events and stuff which I pointed out above is ALOT. You can also get these shards by using a currency found in a certain dungeon or by the currency you get for doing your daily/monthly achievements...either way its ALOT. Finally, get 500 badges of honor from doing PvP and WvW stuff...I haven't done too much of that stuff so I only have like 20 of these badges...lol Anyways, that gets you just the Gift of Mastery...thats 1 out of the 4 items you need to craft your legendary...
For the Gift of Fortune...you need 250 Globs of Ectoplasm which you get from breaking down a RARE item and it is never guaranteed...or you can buy them for ~30 silver a piece...you need 250 of them. You need to craft 77 Mystic Clovers which in itself will cost you ABOUT 250 MORE Globs of Ectoplasm AND 231 Mystic Coins that you get from daily/monthly/exploration achievements AND ABOUT 250 more Obsidian Shards that I explained above AND about 231 Crystals or about 1389 philosophers stones which will cost about 139 more Skill Points. I say ABOUT alot with these Mystic Clovers because there is no guarentee you will get a Mystic Clover when you put this stuff in to craft. You could put all this stuff in and get only 50 of the 77 clovers that you need...this is merely based on the usually ratio...lol Then you need a Gift of Might and a Gift a Magic which are both made using 8 different high tiered crafting materials (250 pieces of each). That all will get you the Gift of Fortune which is your 2nd item.
Third item is is the specific Legendary weapon gift. You need 100 Mystic coins that I explained above to get 100 of a certain item from a vendor for that specific weapon. You will need 20 more Mystic Coins to get two recipes to make two more 'gift' items plus the specific ingredients for each. You need to Superior Sigil for the specific legendary and 500 Dungeon Tokens for the specific legendary your going for (which is about 8 fresh dungeon runs of the specific dungeon).
Finally the last item is the precursor Weapon. The precursor weapon itself is rare as hell...you have to get lucky and get it from the specific boss that it drops from (its like a 2% chance or something like that....) or buy it for 100+G. You can also risk throwing in some rare and exotic items (all valuable) for a completely random (and low) chance of you getting the precursor weapon you want..
As you can see, the legendary is a HUGE grind. Frankly, I don't care if the stats are equivalent...IMHO, it would be worth the grind to get it just for my own achievement not to mention everyone would notice you as one of the very few people in the game to have achieved it. So it WILL at least make you stand out in a crowd...
Anyways, back to the topic...personally, this is my favorite MMO because it is nice a relaxed. The community is fantastic and your typical 'WoW' trolls don't bother us...If you do get the game, check out the Tarnished Coast server...its such an awesome server with the RP community/events and ArenaNet staff joining us from time to time! :-D
I think if you like to grind out gear, this won't be your type of game.
Endgame equip is fairly easy to obtain (well, ascended is a grind, but there are also not all slots available for this gear quality yet, and you can do everything just as well in exotics (except FotM on higher difficulty levels); and legendaries are also a grind of course, but as of now they are only for looks and not for better stats (they will get ascended stats once ascended weapons will be introduced, though).
To me, endgame is pretty much WvW, which is a massive open-worldish PVP zerg- and siegefest and, if you're in a dedicated guild, can be super fun.
PVE, alas, is quite boring. There are few challenges to be had. The exploration mode dungeons are pretty easy and you'll get the gear off those quite quickly. I did AC all three paths for one single time and got myself an exotic helmet...So it's definitely possible to get these sets in 2 weeks max. if you're doing a few of the dungeons each day (they also don't take very long). Also, unlike in WoW, you can just skip trashmobs by running past them to the next boss. Before each Boss there is a little cutscene and miraculously the mobs that have been chasing you before don't afterwards...Therefore, everybody just makes speedruns which take around 10 minutes for the probably easiest one. If you just want to maximise your gearoutput this is only understandable, but if you want to do a dungeon for fun, this is really boring.
FotM is, as was mentioned a dungeon that gets ever harder per level because of a unique damage-type. This is also the only place where you'll need the ascended gear as only this provides you with resistance against this damage. But from what I've seen the improved difficulty comes only from more mobs and more damage. So, it becomes less forgiving (the lowlvls are pretty faceroll easy...), but it's also very repetitive, as there are ~7 (I guess) minidungeons you can get (they are assigned randomly every run) and you'll be doing a lot of the same.
But this FotM dungeon is also probably the most grindy it gets in GW2.
This was something I wrote about when I first got the game.
A few things that are proving true, 5 months in...
This game has no end game....what I mean by that is if you're lvl 80...you're pretty much done.
If you like PvP and choose the wrong server you're really done...you can't World vs World b/c there's no one on to WvW with (and this game is set up for a zerg mentality, biggest group typically wins, if numbers are close then it's a toss up, but if you have 10-20 more of decent players, there's maybe a small % chance the smaller group wins.)
PvE, at level 80, is a boring slow grind where if you were farming, it takes forever, b/c you can't pull mobs in large groups to you (not that I condone farming, it's boring, but at times a necessity)
And once you figure the game out, you can level and get to that end game status quick....so then it really becomes all about Dungeons (do you like doing the same dungeon over and over again) or PvP and server strength, and recently GW announced free moves and a cut off date and they destroyed my server by doing so
Lesson learned on that...next time something like that happens...find out where the herd is going lol....
Bottom Line, if you like to PvP, then get on a very highly populated server to hang with the zerg. If you like to PvE, then get ready to roll guy after guy after guy...and then delete some and reroll new ones, unless you want to pay for extra slots.
And yes you can switch servers.....for a cost.
and I personally think it would be pretty low for a company to set up something that forced their players to pay to change all the time on purpose, whomever made this decision to charge for server moves But announce cut off dates for free moves wasn't too bright...
I don't know what the player population on my server is at this point, but it'd be interesting to see log times of those prior to the announcement and now today....
Though I think on my server the PvE environment is going pretty strong....for the PvP part, it takes certain games years for a server to die out the powers that be for GW helped take mine down in 3 months...and maybe that was the plan all along.