I should be about done commenting on GW2 WvW Season One. I have been wondering all weekend why I can’t just give up, but I may be getting there. Like all seven weeks of Season One, my server of Isle of Janthir has no chance of winning this week, but this is the first week we have been up against either of the two servers that have a chance to win NA Silver. It is a ridiculous mismatch; during times when I play, Stormbluff Isle outnumbers us on every map including our borderlands, usually to the point of having the official Outnumbered buff. One night, I went to try a bit of yakslappiong in SBI BL, and there were full groups parked at all the exits from our spawn in case anyone came out to play. It’s not like they have anything better to do in WvW when they already control most of the map.
I think the weight class discussion summarizes the week-to-week matchup problems. You can argue about the fine details, but you know who the top servers are in each league, so you can pick who is going to win most weeks. The first and seventh weeks look potentially interesting, but most of the weeks for most of the servers you can pick out the winners in advance. I had said that in the abstract, but I had not taken the schedule and plotted it out. Merus told us, and folks plotted out Gold, and right now there is a very narrow range at the top of the NA leagues.
NA Gold was predicted for Jade Quarry because Gold has two weeks with AAA/BBB and five with AAB/ABB (where A beats B), and Jade Quarry is the lone A against two Bs for three weeks while the other As each get only one easy week. That should be 15 guaranteed points for JQ, while Blackgate and Sanctum of Rall must fight each other for top slots. So far, Blackgate has won twice, so if they can keep beating SoR, they could still win despite the harder schedule. JQ came in third place in the AAA matchup, so it immediately seems problematic that they could win on points while losing in head-to-head matches. I don’t think Arrow’s impossibility theorem was meant to apply here.
NA Silver has two servers competing for the top, and Fort Aspenwood beat Stormbluff Isle in their first matchup. They will meet again in week 7 and are both expected to win all five weeks in between, so really the only question is whether SBI can rally for that last week. There is some chance of an upset in those five weeks, but it would be a large upset. In this sense, Silver is somewhat more competitive, but that is in the sense of the overall winner. Of the 21 Silver matchups, the outcomes of 10 are effectively predetermined by SBI or FA alone there, just like the lone A is expected to win in each of 5 weeks in Gold. It’s not so much competitive play as waiting for the inevitable to play out. The other match of the week could be interesting, but coming from a server that will definitely be last or next-to-last after being gutted by pre-season transfers, I cannot bring myself to care much which of the other two servers we’re playing will win the week. Checking the schedule, we have FA two of the next three weeks, and Yak’s Bend will win the other week, so there are not a lot of surprises in my future.
I am told that the situation is similar in NA Bronze, but I have not read up on it. Again: 2-3 As, and the bottom tier has been gutted by transfers. The results so far show two servers unbeaten and two with no wins. Again: large weight class differences.
WvW tiers were instituted to prevent these kinds of uncompetitive mismatches. WvW Seasons were instituted because it seemed funny to have servers with constant queues fight servers that have no queues?
And then, for bonus fun, the Living World PvE content was copied into the WvW zones. Because the predestined winners need something to keep them occupied when they cannot find other players to fight?