[GW2] Creep Count Crowdsource

Readers, many of you play Guild Wars 2, so I come to you with the question: in what ways have exotic-rarity items become easier to acquire since launch? The ones that immediately come to mind for me are:

  • exotic drops added to more drop tables
  • guaranteed rare or better drops from some classes of events
  • increased champion and boss rewards
  • increased karma rewards, particulalry from daily/monthly achievements
  • increased WvW badge rewards, particularly from achievement chests
  • anything that increases rare-rarity items, because you salvage them for materials to craft exotics
  • anything that increases ascended-rarity items, because that frees your resources to pursue exotics

Others? In the vaguely ongoing debate about the perceived need for ascended-rarity items, I noted the argument “exotics are too easy to get.” One of the things that struck me after my return to Guild Wars 2 was that I had multiple level 80 characters fully outfitted in exotics about as quickly as taking them to a tailor to be fitted. I was tempted to say that ascended items only became “necessary” because the difficulty of acquiring exotics had been lowered so much, but that is the wrong order of events. I left town as ascended items were introduced, and fully outfitting characters in exotics was not exactly trivial at that time. I imagine the following dialogue:

Dev: We need ascended items because becoming fully geared in exotics is far faster and easier than we had intended.
Player: It’s not all that quick or easy.
Dev: Really? Give me a minute here. [UPDATE] Okay, now getting exotics is far faster and easier than we had intended, so we need the ascended items.

: Zubon

12 thoughts on “[GW2] Creep Count Crowdsource

  1. Jeromai

    Gold has been easier to accumulate more of, via various methods, making it easier to buy a set of exotics or missing crafting materials off the TP.

    Dungeon tactics have been worked out and streamlined, players’ skills and builds somewhat better, so that running the fastest path repeatedly for tokens is easier than before.

    1. Zubon Post author

      That sounds inflationary to me, unless it encourages more people to craft/sell those exotics to get the money. Unless it increases the number of exotics, the extra money just makes the money worth less.

      1. Jeromai

        Let’s just take a random representative armor piece off the TP. Berserker’s Draconic Coat, a piece of heavy armor with desirable stats (http://www.gw2spidy.com/item/10635) and compare it from Oct ’12 to Oct ’13.

        Yes, there has been mild inflation during that time. And a stronger inflation the last two months as has been pointed out before.

        But besides one remarkable low in Nov ’12 (not sure what happened there, Halloween, boredom with game? people already reached 80 and didn’t need more armor?) the price has fluctuated between 3-5 gold.

        I think it’s easier for many to get 3-5 gold a day now as compared to before. Wealth got distributed away from those who faithfully ran CoF path 1 for hours on end daily.

        What’s exactly stabilizing the price, I’m not sure. People crafting for cost as coppertopper suggests?

        1. Aspeon

          If you look at a weapon- say Berserker’s Pearl Machete (http://www.gw2spidy.com/item/15314), you can see another factor for the list. Because crafting 400-500 requires creating a lot of exotics, that created a new supply with no corresponding demand that lowered the prices.

          Though looking at some other stat sets, the drop-off at the beginning of September isn’t as big. But it’s still there.

        2. Zhentar

          The cost of the Draconic Coat closely tracks the value of the ingredients to make it. As there is essentially no barrier to making it, if it’s ever worth more than the ingredients will cost, people will undercut, and if it’s worth less, then they’ll stop making them until the price goes up again.

          The price dropped in late October because the price of the ingredients plummeted (I don’t remember what threw things off, but look at Powerful Blood – under 4s!).

          The prices have remained so stable since then because ANet has put a lot of effort into maintaining the value of the high level crafting materials. Much of the “creep” mentioned (guaranteed rares, increased boss event/champion drops) has been directly offset by the introduction of new crafting recipes that consume the materials in large volumes.

          Getting exotics is indeed significantly easier for me today than it was a year ago, but that would have been the case even without any increases in rewards. Arming my first level 80 with the meager resources I’d accumulated on my to 80 was a challenge, but after earning my first set of exotics, I continued to accumulate wealth without any substantial sinks offsetting, unless something cosmetic caught my eye.

          Even way back then, it was well under 20 hours of work to acquire a set if you put your mind to it. I’m pretty terrible at farming, so I just accumulated it through casual play, and it still probably only took me a couple weeks.

  2. coppertopper

    Let’s add: crafting components can be farmed by anyone no matter if they specialize in a craft or not, making exotic armor/weapon items on the AH sold for cost.

    This in particular makes for a dull game when the only potentially interesting RNG champion drops are precursor weapons.

  3. Ravious

    Exotics are also way easier in alternative currencies. WvW badges of honor are gained every 500 achievement points regardless of a person’s PvP viability. Doing a daily nets at least a couple thousand karma on top of any events that were done along the way…. leading to easy exotic gearing via Orr.

    So yes it has slowly become easier, on top of the other reasons above.

    I still don’t think exotic gearing is trivial. There is a notable cost. It’s like a $20 per person meal. It’s doable, but notable…. unlike say getting two items off a $1 menu.

  4. jason wolcott (@woolydub)

    My hope is that Ascended is the ceiling for BiS until this game’s servers are shut down many years from now. I don’t mind putting in work for armor and weapons as long as the ceiling doesn’t keep going up every 6 months or so. I think this game benefits greatly from not always having to chase gear. Heck, I think every game benefits greatly from not implementing a gear chasing mechanic. Make fun and replayable content and a majority of people will keep playing. I know ArenaNet is capable of doing that. They had great retention for many years with GW1 and that game never once raised armor caps or weapon damage ceilings.

  5. bhagpuss

    There have, as you say, been many new ways to get Exotics but I think the biggest change for me was the addition of the rewards for hitting each 500 or 1000 Achievement mark. Along with a tidal wave of useless crap I got a massive amount of Badges of Honor, which tied in very neatly with the addition of a vast range of Exotic gear on WvW vendors. I was able to fully outfit several characters purely using the badges already had saved plus the several thousand I got from the Achievement update.

    There have also been several direct exotic rewards for completing Living Story content.

    1. Zubon Post author

      Remember how those were added before the account wallet? Stacks and stacks of badges. I went shopping for exotics and considered buying an extra Gift of Battle just to save space.

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