[I’m leaving some of my thoughts and impressions of PW. Ultimately, it seems the game just doesn’t fit what I’m looking for. Maybe it’s just me, maybe not. I’m sure a number of these impressions are well known. In any case, I leave them in the hope developers of this of future games will know what worked and what didn’t for one gamer.]
It has been several years since I played PW. Last time I stopped as a level 65 cleric because the grind got too bad. When I heard about the 95-instapills, I figured I’d give it another go. After all, the point was to get you past the grind and into the “real” content. So I created a new character and threw myself back into it as my old character was gone, though magically reappeared in the account after a week or so.
I checked out a few 95-guides people had posted so I could make sure I was going down a proper path. They all recommending doing cultivation first. Since I had no coin and some respectable gear is always a necessity, it seemed a grand idea (took a while to figure out that’s what the Book of Time was waiting for).
So let’s allocate some attribute points and start with the monsters! Oh, wait. [Long suppressed memories bubble painfully to the surface.] This is how you perma-****-up a toon. (They charge *how much* for an attribute reset?! Ridiculous, 100% resets should just cost coin, def. no more than 500/point. Experimentation and trying something new is part of the fun! Instead, it’s a way to get you to bend over. … Breathe, you’re okay. … In. Out.)
Ok, I’ll dig up the archer class guides later. I’m excited to get back into the game quickly, yet I don’t want to **** myself, so I’ll just allocate a small portion of the points now. I remember, if hazily, that most archers use light armor, which is a dex-heavy attribute, so that’s where I go to start (oh, how I pity the newbies when they realize what’s lurking for them … Breathe. Calm. In. Out.). Now it’s time for some monsters.
Oh yeah, battles. The first thing I recall when I start fighting monsters is how horrific the controls were. Target and press your attack button. Perhaps press attack again and… wait... for... it. Just trust that the key press will *eventually* do something. Don’t dare move, though—that’s not allowed while you use a skill (“skill”, lol, now there’s an oxymoron for you). If you want to use a different skill, you’d better be fast at that escape key because otherwise… you’ll… have… to… wait… to… finish. Oops, did I really press a different action and have that one queue up? Wish I would have known that when I pressed the freak’n button. (Yes, give the instant feedback that the action is queued next… personally I prefer the instant react to the skill, where pressing a new skill cancels the old and starts a new, that way there’s at least some timing skill involved, but whatever…) Alright, give it a little while and I’ve re-learned to tolerate the controls (not enjoy, not ever… just... tolerate...).
And onto the quests. Ah. I remember these. Collect four of these. Kill ten of those. Now fifty. (Sigh.) At least the cultivation quests are a little different, for now. I can even solo the level 19 quest! I remember camping out forever waiting for a group to come by on my first char oh so long ago. On to the next cultivation rank!
Oh. The next one is on the other side of the world. Well, guess I needed a snack anyway. (Yes, the instapill granted some teleports. But I’d rather save those for when I really need them. I certainly wished I had them as a level 65 the first time around.)
[Fifteen minutes later…] Great, I’m at the next place. Talk to her and… go… back….
[Fifteen minutes later…] Talk to him… and go to the other side of the map and kill XX number of ZZ… then come back. “Why am I still playing this?” I ask myself for the second time this hour. “For progress,” I tell myself. “I’m making progress towards the real content. And maybe, just maybe, there will be a slick skill this next cultivation that might be fun, but not too fun because you can’t really afford to level stuff up very far yet.”
[Fifteen minutes later, on the flight home…] “Was it like this the first time?” I wonder. “No, there was a lot more grinding in between the travel. Don’t you remember auto-cultivation?” “Oh, that’s right. Proof that even the devs know it’s mindless grinding, where the smarter you are the quicker you tire and leave. Maybe I’ll leave the bot on for a while and get a few coin for this next cultivation.” (And if it wasn’t so easy/mindless to battle, then you wouldn’t have such a bot problem)
[Comes back a little over an hour later…] Hey, I got the last of the mats I needed for the second safe extension. Let’s get it (because the store is so overpriced, let’s save our cash for something worthwhile) and auction the rest.
[Fifteen minutes later…] I remember the auction (sigh). I’d like a few pieces of armor to tide me over until the next Book of Time reward, let’s see what there. I see a few things for the newbies (like safe DQ mats) … and a few things for the ubers… and nothing else. Not a single scrap of intermediate gear in the entire auction listing. … “In Guild Wars 2 I could put a bid out for an item,” I think to myself. “And a listing lasted indefinitely. You could always find *something* listed. Yeah, Guild Wars 2 was a lot of fun. Why are you playing this again? ” I shake the heretical thought away. “Progress. I’m making progress. Must. Focus. Push past the pain.”
Hey. I just got an in-game mail. (A once-forgotten habit opens my friends list to see who is on, to reveal my years-old friend list overflows with the greyed-out dead.) Guess I have to find a postbox to find out what the **** it is (because clicking the mail icon to read even a subject line is too much to ask).
Well what do you know? I’m getting some cash on those auction items. I guess a lot of people with coin must be doing 95-instapill alts and need the DQ mats. Sold them, and a second round at a nice price. I got good coin, finally. Now I can experiment by advancing skills a bit (but careful, careful! not too much—that, with attributes, was how your cleric got ruined).
Things are working out after all. “See, this is what you’ve been waiting for,” I assure myself.