ArenaNet added a whole bunch of new systems to Guild Wars 2 post-launch to stop players running out of content too quickly, but is approaching the limits of how complicated it can make the game.
In an interview with Forbes, Guild Wars 2’s lead designer Isaiah Cartwright said ArenaNet is always questioning whether the MMORPG has become too complicated.
“It’s a debate we have here all the time, especially when it come to the number of currencies that are around,” he said.
“It really comes down to when you want to reward someone for doing a specific type of gameplay. Because we’ve been adding a lot of reward systems, we’ve seen an increase in the number of currencies out there. But we’re getting toward the tail end of the number of systems we feel that we can put in the game.”
Cartwright said ArenaNet will be working on improving existing systems rather than adding new ones from now on.
“I want us to slow down on the number of systems that we’re adding and polish up and clean up the ones that we have added so they’re easier to understand, with better UI for them, those types of things, that’ll be some of the stuff that we’re focused on in the future,” he said.
“One of the major goals of Guild Wars was to allow anyone to jump in and play. We have a team dedicated to making sure that it’s easy, and we’re going to continue to improve that process as much as we can.”
Cartwright mentioned that many of the currencies need to be kept away from new players so as not to overwhelm them, but did give an explanation for why things have gotten so complex.
“As we were looking at the play patterns of players, we noticed they were getting through the last step of progression in our game faster than we wanted them to. That would lead them to run out of things to accomplish,” he said.
“We didn’t want to get into a gear-grind scenario, so what we did was add a new tier rarity called Ascended items. We wanted to add a step in there to insure that people had a lot to do.”