Ya know, I kinda like how the Personal Story is clumped together. I find I don’t have to think, “Who is [x] character again?” because it was several levels between visits.
I do like how the rewards have improved as well (many of the items allow you to choose what stats you want rather than pre-determined (and usually pretty poor). And of top of that, finishing this PS segment earned me an Order related weapon skin. Not too shabby.
I also conveniently earned another clump of skill points just in time to grab my elite skill just as they unlocked (Rampage as One, obviously). I guess it kinda worked out… but I’m skill not completely sold on this entire “get everything in clumps” strategy. I mean, I kinda get the logic behind it (I can see how players could kinda “forget” getting 1 trait point and 1 skill point when each step requires multiple points), but it’s still kinda meh.
Meanwhile, as far as trait hunting goes, I immediately found one absurd one that was fairly fundamental for the Ranger build (Vigorous Spirits), which required exploring all of Harathi Hinterlands to unlock.
I mean, I kinda get how it could work, as additional incentive for new players to do things they wouldn’t normally think of doing. But for someone who has already explored Harathi three times?
So I cheated, and had my other ranger (the level 80 with a bajillion skill points) buy the guides and drop them in my bank. Sorry. I guess it’s nice that you can do it that way… but it’s still pretty stupid that something that was perfectly fine to begin with is now something so poorly implemented.
Other traits weren’t particularly time consuming, and often were a surprise to stumble on, like earning one through kill Kol in Harathi. If more were like that (having to go off the more beaten path) rather than something merely time consuming (like zone exploration), it’d be more bearable.
I’ll admit to bias, I’m not a fan of “hunting” things for trivial reasons. I despised the elite skill capping of GW1. I came into this having already decided I was going to hate the trait capping of GW2. So take that in mind when I say I pretty much entirely loathe what Arena.net did to the trait system.
Revert it back to the way it was, please. I want all my traits without having to do stupid stuff to get gw2 gold. Thank you.
So, I’m now at level 40, where the NPE was supposed to really come to an “end” initially, and my personal judgment of the matter is “eh.” It’s not nearly as terrible as the vocal forum presence wants to claim… but it’s not a particularly impressive improvement on what existed before.
Some things are better. Some things are more annoying. I guess if you had never played the game before, you wouldn’t be bothered, and would probably like it. For a veteran, I really think the best Arena.net can hope for is that you find it more different than worse.
For me, that’s how I’ve decided to view it.