Since it didn't require a monthly subscription, Guild Wars appealed to a lot of gamers outside the hardcore realm, with a model that let people play for a while and then set it aside. That was, in my opinion, one of its great strengths, as I've been one of those players. There were times when I had loads of time to play, and times when I was only on during holiday weekends. Unfortunately, that angle--the leave and return model--while one of the game's strengths may hurt them as Guild Wars 2 *finally* gets released.
Why? Some of those occasional players may have lost their enthusiasm about the game. During the first two years of development, I was excited for the release and confident I would play. As the years have dragged on, I've still been excited to see the development news, but it has become something less and less exciting to me. I worked hard to fill my Hall of Monuments in Guild Wars (an in-game feature that would allow certain achievements to pay out in the new Guild Wars 2 environment), but now find myself only marginally interested. I planned to buy the pre-release during the early years of development, but took a pass when it became available earlier this year. One of my sons got in, and has been enjoying beta weekends and stress test events, but I'm starting to wonder if I'll even bother buying the game (especially since I'll need to replace my laptop if I want to continue using it for my gaming).
Sure, these are just my musings, but I get the sense that I'm not the only one out there who may have lost interest when the development took so long. I'm sure many of you have been waiting with bated breath and can't imagine not playing, but all I can muster for now is, "Meh."
Don't get me wrong--it looks amazing and my son has been having a lot of fun. It's just that those of us on the periphery of the gaming scene see our interests wax and wane. Perhaps I'll change my tune when others I know start playing--if they start playing at all. For me, rather than playing Guild Wars 2 on Friday nights, I'll probably continue playing MTG at the card shop in the next town--it's a lot of fun, too, and I'm meeting more interesting people that way, too.
Anyway, point made. Personal rant over.