One of the biggest selling points for Guild Wars 2 was the fact that your level was adjusted based on, not only the zone you were in, but also the area of the zone you are in. This allowed you to go back and play with lower-level friends, check out other zones on your own and, ultimately, to get benefit out of all the content that is lower level than your character is presently.
The game was just updated once more on January 28th, and it included some adjustments to this dynamic leveling system to balance things out and bring things more in line with what the developers at ArenaNet originally intended.
Isaiah Cartwright, the lead game designer for Guild Wars 2, shared some insight into these changes yesterday, stating the main issue they faced when allowing higher level players to come back to a lower level zone and play in a reduced capacity based on that zone’s leveling structure. The issue was that, even leveled down, higher level players were still more powerful than the content in those lower level zones. Because of that, they had to reduce the potency of the gear earned for those lower level quests, making them unsuitable for the higher level characters.
The two changes made in this week’s update should help alleviate this.
- The formula for how attributes are calculated when the dynamic leveling adjustment system scales you down was altered, which balances out returning to lower level zones and, according to ArenaNet, makes them more fun (read: challenging).
- The formula for how rewards are calculated when scaled down was changed. This was to make the rewards more meaningful for higher level players and increases the possibility that they would want to visit those lower level zones.
To me, as one of the game’s player, this change certainly makes sense. It did always seem to me that I was just wrecking everything in a lower level zone when I would return, especially if the level difference between my character and the zone I was visiting was extreme. Not only that, but now the rewards may be a better incentive to visit some lower level zones, making them ultimately more enjoyable and worthwhile.