[GW2] Stages of RNG

I can’t believe ArenaNet made an untradeable set of miniatures in the Wintersday Mystery Boxes. It must be a mistake. There will be ways to get those account-bound miniatures another way. They wouldn’t have decided to restrict this collectible to straight up personal randomness.

I got burned so badly during The Lost Shores where I stupidly gave them $10 for a failed attempt at exotic miniatures. I used to be collecting all of the miniatures back when people didn’t understand the pyramid scheme that is miniature collecting. When those three ultra-rare karka miniatures hit, I just threw my hands up.

Okay, here’s another $10, ArenaNet. Let’s pick up a sack of Wintersday Mystery Boxes and hope they aren’t loaded with default coal (tonics). All I want is the Mini Festive Golem. I know I am going to take one across the face by the RNG, just like I did for Halloween and The Lost Shores. Maybe I will just get something worthwhile this time. I don’t even want the chase item. Just give me something cool, ArenaNet?

Foo. I got three Mini Snoman miniatures. They got forged into Foostivoo; stupid little quaggan staring at his feet is how I feel. People want this dumb miniature too, and I can’t do anything about that. I also can’t gamble anymore because Lionguard Lyns is down without comment. I guess I’ll just play some Wintersday content with this dumb beluga-thing following me around.

Even with this disappointing gamble, Wintersday is pretty fun, you know. I still get a kick out of the jumping puzzle even though I can one-shot it daily. The story of Tixx is also pretty good. Are the skritt being turned in to toys in the Infiniararium? There’s some Tyrian pest control there. I’m starting to like Foostivoo too. My little girls get a kick out of seeing the “blue frog with the silly hat” following me around. I crafted them an early Christmas present of an Endless Princess Doll Tonic, that I can’t wait to give them. I think ArenaNet definitely earned my $10. Excuse me, I have to go snipe some people in a snowball fight.

–Ravious

24 thoughts on “[GW2] Stages of RNG

  1. Saylah

    I haven’t gambled on getting the mini pets in any fashion. I have enjoyed collecting pets in other games. For my tastes, I prefer the randomness of farming them versus flinging money at it. If I have to use money, I want to buy it outright.

    To me the big miss is they need more regular and holiday skins for purchase. The ones they introduced with this event is the first time my son was remotely interested in the gem shop. He came in for a lesson on how to trade gold for gems and purchased the staff.

    I own both of the holiday outfits they’ve introduced and my purse would be a bit lighter in their behalf if they had better regular stuff. I mean bunny ears, a knit cap…really???? in Tyria??? And no, the Victorian-esck outfit doesn’t necessarily fit either but damn I look good in it! LOL I’d have paid an awful lot to have a holiday sled to drive around. Even if it was restricted with a cool down like the witch’s broomstick on the Halloween costume.

  2. Lazrin

    I just don’t understand why gamers fall into this trap and put up with this kind of monetization.

    It’s nothing less than gambling, because there’s no other retail situation where you pay X dollars for something you don’t know if you’ll get or not. It’s prey on the week.

    I’m also more convinced than ever Ravious is just a shill for ArenaNet. Either that or a fanboy of the highest order. Every article finds absolute praise when there is nothing but fault.

    1. Ravious Post author

      If this article is absolute praise, I’d love to see the world through your rose-colored glasses. Anyway feel free to peruse our archives to see how many times I’ve suggested changes to ArenaNet.

      Trying to eke something from *your* comment, are you saying that I should say the content is not fun because of the RNG of one of the cash shop items? Because paragraphs 1-4 are definitely not praise.

      1. SynCaine

        Post came off to me as ultimately saying paragraphs 1-4 don’t matter, because wheee GW2. Maybe I’m reading it wrong, but that’s how I see it as well.

        1. Curuniel

          That is sort of what it said to me, but to me that just means this one frustration with content Ravious strongly disagrees with does not make the whole game bad (and I’ve seen far too many players of far too many things declare that one bad feature makes the game not worth playing). There’s nothing good about the mini situation. I guess it could do with more emphasis on the critical.

  3. Saylah

    I think he’s taking the good with the bad. Versus pay to win scenarios, ANet opted to include these sorts of transactions in addition to costumes and bag space. They have to earn money in some manner beyond the box price and different players respond to different incentives.

    As noted, I haven’t spent a gem on anything that’s random. I opt and prefer to purchase cosmetics. However, that clearly doesn’t appeal to everyone, so they’ve spread the offering. It’s all optional. He doesn’t have to have the mini pets or spend a cent on them. He’s choosing to do so. *shrug*

    The GW2 content is stellar so to each his own how they choose to contribute to the ANet/GW2 maintenance fund. :-)

  4. darkeye

    I see a lot of people reacting badly to this RNG business, but all I can do is shake my head and wonder why so many people get worked up over it. There is plenty of other items in the cash shop where money is better spent. There is no in-game advantage to having these rare miniatures, and die-hard collectors always pay a premium. The reasonable course of action is to spend $10 on the boxes and no more, take whatever you get and move on, spending any more is a sure-fire way to show you may have a problem.

    I see a highly upvoted thread on the GW2 subreddit about RNG ‘content’, which is a poor choice of word. The content is fine, in my opinion it is exceptional, and I tend to avoid getting too caught up in the rewards and enjoy the content for what it is, but it seems a lot of people can’t do the same.

    I like how they handled the toy mini/tonics, some tough decisions to be made on whether to get the mini or the tonic. A child can accept that they can’t have everything in the toy shop, some ‘adults’ have some trouble with that concept.

    1. Ravious Post author

      That’s exactly how I went about it this time, hence my play on the Kubler-Ross 5-stage model. I decided I am going to give them $10, because I want to, and that $10 is going towards boxes. I’ll get what I get. Still, the story is reflective of how I have felt a little through post-launch limited time offerings.

      1. Saylah

        Am not a fan of randomness with real life money purchases so I like that there’s a spread of offerings. Like you said, you decided up front on the risk you were willing to take to obtain the item. On my end, I’m sure I’ve paid far more to have the costumes but that’s what floats my boat.

        The fact that I’ve never gotten anything really valuable from the Black Lion’s chests was enough for me to decide I wasn’t doing random with them on anything else. LOL But give me a cute dress and I’m all in. :-)

        1. darkeye

          I spent €20 on gems just before Wintersday, my first purchase since buying the game, then spent most of the gems on remodelling 3 of my characters. What does that say about me, haha. Going to avoid anything else cosmetic and buy something more practical like a bank slot upgrade with the remainder.

      2. Curuniel

        I think, Ravious, your problem is probably that you decided to collect mini-pets pretty much before or as the game came out. In the face of this (if it continues) you either have to abandon that self-assigned goal, or pay a lot more than you anticipated for it.

        Personally, I’d recommend you don’t spend any gems on random minis next event, and post saying as much. Only the withdrawal of money will make a point to those whose job it is to ensure a profit for ArenaNet.

        1. Ravious Post author

          Yeah one of my personal triumphs in GW1 was collecting the entire first set. Who knows what will come with first birthdays, but I was hoping to get one set… or instead of a legendary work on getting these. Unfortunately once people started buying them the prices shifted. At least I got one exotic from the forge.

  5. Saylah

    @Darkeye – it says that you’re in it to have fun!! It’s a game, we don’t have to be practical. We do that all day long in our real lives. Bring on the dresses, skirts and glitter or whatever it is you men like as costumes. :-)

  6. Kalu

    Even if you play the Monopoly game at McDonalds, no purchase necessary, you know the odds of winning, by law. Somehow, in GW2, we do not get that small courtesy even when real money is being spent. Because real money is being spent, gambling losses involve real money. If someone wants to pretend ignorance they don’t know or care why gambling is usually illegal and the social and economic consequences it can inflict, there’s nothing I or anyone can do for your soul.

  7. Strofnir

    I get the frustration with the RNG purchase, but it’s a bit sad to me that very few people can at least acknowledge the fact that Wintersday has a ton of FREE content. From the comments here it seems that even fewer will even tolerate someone merely acknowledging it for them.

    I wonder if ArenaNet would be better off just adding a bunch of free minipets every month, since it seems that its all anyone really cares about anyway.

  8. Coppertopper

    I’m still confused as to how to get minis outside of special events and the item shop. Achievement related minis seems to be missing entirely.

  9. Mekhios

    I wouldn’t gamble $10 on cosmetic items. What’s the point. It does nothing for your class. If I am going to waste $10 on a virtual item I’d prefer to spend it on a PLEX in EVE or some SOE station points to buy a weapon upgrade in PS2 which at least gives a tangible benefit ingame. I guess if you have the cash to spare it isn’t a big deal. Still a waste though.

    1. Saylah

      Different strokes for different folks. Players value things differently. I’d spend $10 on cosmetics in GW2 but not $1 for armor with stats or the alike, if it was offered. What I get from normal game play is good enough. Waste is relative only to what you personally value. There is no black and white answer.

  10. bhagpuss

    This whole minipet thing mystifies me. I mean, I enjoy seeing a twee baby animal or toy following my character around as much as the next Tallulah Gosh fan, but it’s a tiny, tiny part of the warp and weft of an MMO, isn’t it? Why is it such a huge thing in the Guild Wars culture?

    I haven’t even decided which one to make yet. I did all the Tixx dungeons because they were largely fun and gave great xp – the minipets are a byproduct. I’ll probbaly take the Princess Doll and the Charr, although the Griffins are really nice. The Ventari I actively dislike and the Golem is meh. As for buying any of the others for real money, not in this lifetime, not even if they were a fixed-cost purchase, far less a random chance.

    Overall, I have really enjoyed Wintersday – far, far more than Halloween, which I thought was poor. Tweeness off the scale!

    On the subject of whether the OP is positive or negative, I think the key phrase is ” I think ArenaNet definitely earned my $10″. Coming right at the end and appearing to be a conclusion, that does very much leave the impression that the good outweighs the bad even counting the issues with the RNG.

    1. Saylah

      Haven’t been as excited about mini pets as I was in W101 for some reason. Oh the lengths I went to farming those babies, and solo most of the time. Whereas in WOW, EQ2 and GW2, I could careless. Odd.

  11. Entombed

    As always, a well-balanced and very fair article by Ravious. I agree completely with you. This is just the latest of a long line of cash shop misgivings in Guild Wars 2, I think any amount of RNG introduced into a cash shop is simply unethical. However, that being said, the rest of the Holiday is pretty great! Have a Merry Christmas (or Happy Holidays) !

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