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  1. #1

    Hearts are NOT quests, are NOT grindy

    Seriously. Every time I see someone mention hearts as quests or as grindy, alarm bells go off. I don't know which game they're fanboy of, or whether everything has to be forced within a word, even if it means using the word grind for something that is no longer grind....

    Wikipedia definition:
    Grinding is a term used in video gaming to describe the process of engaging in repetitive tasks during video games. [1][2] The most common usage is in the context of MMORPGs like Final Fantasy XI, World of Warcraft, Tibia, or Lineage [3] in which it is often necessary for a character to repeatedly kill AI-controlled monsters, using basically the same strategy over again to advance their character level to be able to access newer content

    In other mmo's this is because virtually all quests are based on killing foes. NEWSFLASH, every single heart I've thus encountered had a no combat mechanic if I wanted. Every single heart has a handful of requirements. You can vary, you can focus on one type, or you can skip the heart for an entirely different kind of content.

    Seriously, to compare a heart to quests, is like comparing a decathlon with 100m sprint. Yes sprint is part of a decathlon, but there's plenty of other fun parts in decathlon for when you're f'n bored of sprinting. Equating hearts to grind, is like equating decathlon to the sprint component.

    So what I read nowadays is trolls no longer trying to shoehorn heart into the definition quest, but rather stretch "grind" to fit around hearts. You're grinding hearts because you are forced to do one of 10 different actions, which you can choose and change at will, and because throughout the entire game you can only do hundreds of variations on these 10 actions, you're grinding, because whether you feed a cow or put out fire you still use an item on an npc therefor it's grind (wtf?).

    Which basically means grinding has been redefined into "enjoying varied gameplay". Newspeak at it's best.

    The only thing which needs grinding in GW2 is banana and vanilla ice cream. And even then I actually blend it. Summer is hot here.

  2. #2
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    Well, I'm a big GW2 fanboy here, and even I disagree with some of what you are saying.

    Quest grind in regular MMOs tend to make you (1) kill stuff, (2) pick up stuff and bring it back, and (3) interact with stuff in the world. That's also true of GW2 hearts. The difference (and it's a big one imo) is that you can complete any heart using any combination of these 3 activities, whereas quests don't give you that choice if you want to complete them.

    Also, GW2 also has a leveling mechanism so that you do have to do quests or kill stuff or whatever to progress to content. That is also common with other MMORPGs. The difference (and it's a big one imo) is that you can level in WvW, in hearts, in dynamic events, or in personal storyline if you want. And you get big bosses from the very beginning. So you're not levelling in activity A to get to play activity B later, you get to do whatever you want from the start.

    So basically GW2 differs in giving you a lot more freedom on how you level up, and in giving you endgame content a lot earlier than other MMORPGs.
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  3. #3
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    Basically, everything Alaris said. So, renown hearts ARE quests, just done in a non-traditional way, and don't fill up a quest log.

  4. #4
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    I'll also add not wasting so much time. Time running between where the action is and where NPCs are. Or time doing 1 thing at a time when all components are in the same place anyway (i.e. kill 10 rats, then kill 10 big rats, but hey those two mobs are in the same place I could have killed the big rats while I was there).
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  5. #5
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    You have a point and your decathalon metaphor is pretty good. But I am sort of in the "heart = quests" boat. The only real difference is that they don't have quest givers. Other games have had quests that didn't require combat orcould be completed in multple ways, so that part of it isn't a huge change. The big difference is that EVERY quest is BOTH of those things and no quest givers required.

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  6. #6
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    Quests not requiring combat are common, like the famous Fedex quests ;)

    Wait, other games had quests that could be done in multiple ways? That's news to me. Please tell me more. Also, if there's a few quests that can be done in various ways, but the vast majority can't, that doesn't count for me. In GW2 afaik the vast majority of quests (hearts of dynamic events) can be done any way you want.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alaris View Post
    Wait, other games had quests that could be done in multiple ways? That's news to me. Please tell me more. Also, if there's a few quests that can be done in various ways, but the vast majority can't, that doesn't count for me.
    Doesn't count then.

    Just meant that the mechanic isn't something new. Like I said, the big thing is that every quest in GW 2 can be completed in multiple ways, including without the requirement of combat.

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    I'll bite at the hearts not seen as quests--I would rather use the term menial tasks/chores just for leveling. No grind, I disagree; to each their own though.

    Those hearts (while a few were enjoyable) felt like grind to me; there were not enough dynamic events to do continually so once the level wall was hit for the personal storyline it was either hearts or kill random monsters to level up. After a dynamic event was done the RP side of open PVE world for me just felt like it died -- now if they were to put a lot more RP into those hearts -- storyline that extend past menial tasks--I say go for it.

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    Not sure why this would warrant a separate thread as it has already been debated at length, but here we go again.

    Hearts are a combination of traditional quests (kill, fedex, collect, etc.) that get automatically added/removed without the need to interact with a NPC beforehand (some parts require traditional NPC interaction).

    Note how your wiki quote does not imply that grinding is about killing, but rather that it's about "engaging in repetitive tasks", where killing is one of many possible tasks. You can therefore turn a hearts event into a grind by choosing to complete it solely through repeating the same out of several possible tasks.

    The main advantage is that you can choose to pick a balance by doing a bit of everything. So much in theory, practically you will simply do what's available at a point. You will hardly wait for a "collect" item to reappear and ignore the mobs you could kill that just spawned.

    Therefore, the first perceived "freedom of choice" becomes largely irrelevant over time, as spawn cycles will dictate what you will likely be doing and the hearts events (aka quests) will offer the same few ways to complete them, they just dress up differently.

    During my time in the BWE and stresstest, I first felt that the hearts events are really great, until I did 2-3 of them and noticed the repeating pattern. Re-doing them on a second character took away any magic it might have had before.

    Personally I think you should spend more time with the game and less quoting wiki and theory-crafting.

  10. #10
    For whatever it's worth, many of the hearts are quite fun. The snowball fight, the vicious bunnies and the cow training all come to mind. Technically (and I mean that as in the mechanics, not linguistically) they're quests, but they're goddam fun quests.

    The second nice thing about hearts is that they often trigger events or have other really interesting consequences. Getting that charr warband together to attack the Flame Legion, or even the super early Norn attacking the grawl are examples. The latter is interesting, the former is fun. I'm not entirely sure where the hearts end and events begin, or if I'm getting them confused or if there is just heavy overlap.

    So call hearts whatever you want, I love (some of) 'em! I give them an A- grade. The minus is because some are a bit silly, like shaking bandits out of suspicious trees over and over.

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