A lousy in-game shop even without the need for real money [Kolumne]

If you see 2 players with great outfits, weapons and mounts in Guild Wars, you are welcome to ask: "Where can I get that from?" As someone who has often been asked in this situation, I can confirm that it often has a bland aftertaste when I have to say: "Uh, from the Gemstore." The so-called gem shop is the origin of many cosmetic upgrades that we can get for our heroes and also serves to co-finance the game. Because GW2 is a Buy2Play title with no monthly costs – if you want, you can even play the Free2Play version and have hundreds of hours of fun (but at some point you want to get the extensions). And although it would be understandable that the developers want to flush the shop with the shop for a few euros, we can avoid this by simply using the gold earned in the game to buy

It's just a great concept, isn't it? Well … not really, if you think about it.

That's why the GW2 gem shop is so bad

First of all: It is of course nice that we can optionally buy things from the shop with our gold, I do not want to dispute that. Nevertheless, this possibility ensures that the developers almost always have excuses and defenders that nullify any criticism of the shop. And my criticism is this:
"When the cool things are in the shop, it doesn't matter what content I play!"

Let's take an example: The mounts in Guild Wars 2 (buy now for € 29.97) have special skins that we can get in the shop. The whole thing is completely cosmetic, so it has no playful use. Nevertheless, there are really splendid designs that also fit Lore-technically great in some areas. When the episode All or Nothing went to the Donnerkopf summit, it became parallel a set of Shiverpeak Mount Skins released, with warm fur and Nordic armor. If you want to get it, you can reach into your wallet or knock your wealth in the game – 20 € or 600+ gold.






Suitable for the frosty release of GW2: All or nothing, the trembling skins for mounts have found their way into the game - unfortunately only as a shop item.



Suitable for the frosty release of GW2: All or nothing, the trembling skins for mounts have found their way into the game – unfortunately only as a shop item.

Source: Buffed





What bothers me about it: Getting the mounts like this has nothing at all to do with this episode, on the contrary: money cannot be earned so well in the Donnerkopfgipfel region. So if I want to earn the chic mount skins in-game, I travel to farm areas such as the Silver Desert, plunder Palawadan or protect the golden city of Tarir and then open their treasure chests.

So if I feel like the chic content of the gem shop, I simply have to look for the most lucrative jobs instead of doing suitable tasks or mastering challenges. There is also content in the game that is so integrated (building the dragon blood weapons at the Donnerkopf summit or unlocking the shard armor in Drachensturz), but mostly new weapons and especially outfits, mount skins, gliders can be found and capes in the shop.






A pleasant counterexample to the many shop skins: We earn the shard armor in Guild Wars 2 piece by piece by doing the appropriate tasks in Dragonfall.



A pleasant counter-example to the many shop skins: We earn the shard armor in Guild Wars 2 piece by piece by doing the appropriate tasks in Dragonfall.

Source: Buffed




If you don't need everything – why the third?

At the end of the day, of course, I get upset that pretty things are not served to me on a silver platter, packed in suitable quests. But honestly? I actually expect that from an MMORPG. Guild Wars 2 does not have an item spiral that constantly requires new equipment. In this respect, the hunt for nicer gaps and cool mounts is actually the ultimate goal. Demanding strikes, fractals, etc. are all well and good, but if I can be much more lucrative elsewhere and then be able to afford shop items, I wonder how old (and new) areas should have any chance if they do not an absolute farm paradise.






Instead of integrating these imposing branded weapons in GW2 into the story about the crystal dragon Kralkatorrik, the developers have made them available in the shop.



Instead of integrating these imposing branded weapons in GW2 into the story about the crystal dragon Kralkatorrik, the developers have made them available in the shop.

Source: Arenanet




In my opinion, players need the little pushes in certain directions. In other MMORPGs there are still rare or difficult to get mounts that lure players over and over into old regions. If every possible dragon in WoW were to be picked up from a dealer for the same price, it would not be the same. In the same way, I'm still drawn to Falling Dragon, because I still need the damned success for the Gloves of Mist Shard Armor …

How can the problem be solved?

Ultimately, I'm not even sure how to solve this problem. The shop is extremely important for Guild Wars 2, because of course many players (including myself) also buy cosmetic delicacies for their heroes for real money. But maybe it would help to earn more than one mount skin ingame. And I don't even expect that the very best designs have to be available through the game, I don't dare to dream that far – but these simple reskins that only allow a new pattern. We have over 200 mount skins, but only one is playable and not available in the shop! Otherwise GW2 is really just the "earn money for the shop" simulator. That some unique skins are now only available through the game's lootbox is a topic for another day …

How do you feel about this phenomenon of GW2? Does the game offer you enough content and beautiful skins outside of the shop that you can chase after? Are mount skins secondary as long as we have to unlock the four-legged friends in the game? Write to us in the comments!

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