I have been playing this game for a month now. I was very skeptical before buying it as after reading various forums I felt its an RPG/RTS combo that may actually not succeed. I was proven wrong...I continued to see interest in people in this game. After playing this game, I realize it actually has opened up a possibility of a new genre of games. Bottom-line, I like it.
However, when I look at any build suggested anywhere on forums, 90% of the time itís focused on how to play this game alone. The 55hp Monk is a nice example. I, however, made a tremendous mistake the other night in getting 2 Mo/W in my team while playing in desert. Dudes died and we couldn't even resurrect. Also, I hardly could see anyone teaming up to play anymore. A PuG in UW is simply waste of money as the people who play there either play alone or play with guildies.
I have played Diablo 2 and LOD for many years, and so, I do know about soloing....and its benefits and disgrace. One time you simply couldn't play on D2 because of lag as there used to be 30000 users making 29999 games...figuratively speaking. To prevent this BNET introduced "more difficulty" in the game and eventually people found a way and we saw the rebirth of hammeradins who were pretty much extinct almost always.
I think the whole purpose of an MMORPG is defeated if people can play solo. I really think that if I want to solo I will get dragon quarters, Final Fantasy games etc. on my PS2. The sole reason to be online is to feel and live in this virtual world. The whole concept of Soloing just kills it.
To stop Soloing a simple measure can be taken...you can solo, but you will not get a single item drop or gold or xp. That may sound more Hitler-like, but, taking a more moderate approach will be to remove party penalty of gold sharing and xp. For goods/drops, I don't think it matters a lot as with gold you actually can buy anything on GW. Bottom-line, you need to be unrewarded for soloing. Having said that I know how painful it is to have someone in team who simply doesn't know what he or she is doing...and that brings me to the RUSH dilemma.
When I built my first character on GW, I went to level 8 in pre sear and entered post sear. And, of course, I had no clue what was going on. It was very exciting too. Then, in post sear, as usual I could not find many people to play with. I met a bunch of Level 20's in Ascalon who saw me a recruiting target and helped me with the quests. I ended up in Piken from Ascalon and then I joined a group randomly and believe it or not, I ended up in TOA in 3 hours. We did missions in between and fought a bit and needless to say, I died all the time...but, I was in TOA without having any clue at all about the character and what to do when in PvE situation.
And then came Droks run. Itís unbelievably ridiculous as I could not explain to myself as to why I would like to have better armor in early stage of the game when I am just level 8 and actually canít kill a thing. Needless to say it was uber pricey for me. I, then, realized the GW economy revolves on rushing people to later parts of the game. Its like forge rushes on Diablo. Its funny, in both the games we have forge included in rush names. In Diablo, you rush for the forge and in GW you rush to the forge....<rofl>.
To prevent Drok rushes, just adding character level requirement to the armor will suffice. But, to balance the economy a better trade system needs to evolve. I don't know why gold needs to be so scarce when fissure armor can cost you like a 600k+ GP.
I felt compelled to write about this. Please feel free to flame me if you feel I am out of line.