I know GW is all about interacting with people, but there comes a time when trying to do a quest with a bunch of people who think they are invincible and rush into battle regardless of what profession they are and what you tell them NOT to do (and all the other major annoyances random people do in a group) just makes playing with other people a pain.
That's where the henchmen come in. Even if I'm playing with friends, sometimes we grab Alesia for extra healing support or any other of the henchmen for an area that our group is weak in. However, the henchmen don't seem to have the best...common sense. Alesia, as an example, always runs into the middle of the fray as if she's some sort of tank, which makes her focus more on healing herself than healing us.
For one, they are all extremely antsy. They seem to like to play in pools of poison water like little children, jumping in and out of the dirty water to the dismay of their parents. Annoying when you have to keep curing them of poison and healing them when their healths are low. Even more annoying is when they do it during a battle.
Secondly, though they follow you without question, unlike player characters, they seem not to have any notion of stealth. "Hug the walls, everybody, so we don't get that group of 12+ Tengu on us..." Oh no. The henchmen are ready to pounce at anything, no matter what it is or however many of them they are. Then the whole plan is ruined, and the group gets slaughtered.
What I'm trying to get here is, perhaps AN can add a little command function/button/menu somewhere for the henchmen. If any of you have played Dynasty Warriors IV, there was a simple way of keeping your bodyguards in order. By pressing the select button, you could cycle through 3 options--attack, defend, or stay. I want to see this sort of thing implemented for the henchmen in GW for better control. After all, they ARE henchmen who are supposed to follow your orders, not just your footsteps.
We could have an attack option, which allows the henchmen to attack normally (when and what you attack, utilizing all their skills). We could have a defense option, which allows the henchmen to not attack unless attacked first, and focus on defensive spells and healing spells for those tough fights. And then a "stay" option, where the henchmen wait patiently for you on the road while you run through a poisoned swamp to grab that chest or whatever. Maybe also something to fix their formations: follow the leader in a line like baby chickens (no random stepping around), fan out to avoid all being pummeled by an AOE spell, etc.
Those are only the basic suggestions. I don't know if it's possible to achieve, or if we could add more specific commands, but this has just been bugging me lately.
It's just a suggestion to help GW with its horrible AI for the henchmen. Any suggestions, comments, add-ons, complaints about the henchmen are welcome. Perhaps in time something will be done.