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Early Leveling Study

Now that Star and I have both shared some of our thoughts and impressions on GW2’s New Player Experience, it’s time to announce our latest mad scheme: the Early Leveling Study.

The purpose of this study is to test each profession in this new leveling environment now that ArenaNet have pushed a patch to fix bugs and have made adjustments based on player feedback.  We hope to:

  • gain more insight into the level gating that new players experience,
  • share this information with the community,
  • help provide new and returning players with information as they consider which professions they’d like to try, and
  • offer reluctant veterans advice on adapting to the new leveling system.

Any good experiment requires parameters and we’ve come up with some that will look at things we’re interested in and which we think the community will find informative as well.  To this end, we’re going to be focusing on the following:

  • the fun factor: is leveling fun? what does it feel like? can a player play the  way s/he wants?
  • play style adjustments: what kind of adjustments do you have to make as you level?
    • here we’re looking to gain insights on the stat burst/stat slump information that’s been gathered by others*
  • exploration: what does the system invite you to discover in the world?
  • lore: what do you learn about Tyrian races, zones, and/or characters?
    • here we’re focusing on charming, smaller detail lore in the world more than racial lore available in the early Personal Story chapters

To make each test equal, we’ll be:

  • testing until level 23,
  • running tests in each of the starter maps, and
  • using only gear that drops or is rewarded.

We feel that level 23 is long enough to open all utility, profession, weapon, and downed skills and get a sense of how a class will progress while working toward opening elite skills.  We won’t be crafting armor or weapons keeping in mind that new players aren’t taught about crafting until after several levels and might not test crafting until later in their progress.  With this in mind, we won’t be using any boosts, food or otherwise.  We’ve already observed that gear drops and rewards keep a character equipped with equipment comparable to crafted Fine and Masterwork level gear now, with occasional Rare gear as well, and that Personal Story also occasionally rewards gear with one-time selectable stats now.

All posts will be categorized under “guild wars 2” “leveling study” and tagged with the “npe” and “leveling study” tags for search ease.  You can also find all posts in the leveling study by clicking on the menu button above and selecting the “GW2 Leveling Study” link there.

So if you see Peat Repeat or Kei Talez in game, feel free to /wave and stop for a chat!  Stay tuned!


* For more on the community’s stat burst/stat slump research, the info in this first post is a good place to start.  This post on reddit gives a breakdown of the math behind the research.

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