With the Guild Wars 2 expansion reveal only hours away, I’m beginning to have heart trouble at the thought of what to do with my “alt” characters. Like most MMO players I have a main and in Guild Wars 2, I have 6 alts. The only class I’m missing at the moment is a Warrior and that’s primarily because I’m not fond of the playstyle: I decided to delete it to make space for what could potentially be a new class rather than by a new character slot. My problem with this however, is the fact that my alternative characters are causing me a great deal of anxiety at the moment. With an expansion pack on the horizon, the prospect of having to once again revisit all their items or unlock new zones on all of them is already giving me a headache.

I wish in many ways that I’d never have made alternative characters in Guild Wars 2. It’s proved a nightmare more than anything else because there’s so much to do. Although my characters are all level 80 and are equipped with Exotic items, things that cause me a great deal of stress are:

  1. Not having full Ascended items across all my characters
  2. Not having World Completion across all my characters
  3. Not having all Crafts maximised across all my characters
  4. Not having all bag slots unlocked across all my characters
  5. Not having completed the Personal Story across all my characters
  6. Not having completed the Living World across all my characters

These six things take such an enormous amount of time and money that it’s agony to do them. I’ve fully Ascended two characters and accomplished World Completion twice, almost three times. The prospect of having to do these bullet points all over again is such a daunting task that I’m seriously contemplating deleting all but my Mesmer and Ranger. With the Heart of Thorns reveal right around the corner, I’m faced with the possibility of Guild Wars 2 increasing its level cap, adding entirely new continents and further raising gear grind.

I’ll happily admit that compared to many massively multiplayer games, Guild Wars 2 is pretty alt friendly. Most things are account wide and it’s only a few things that become a nuisance. Unfortunately, it’s the big hitters that cost considerable money and time that aren’t account bound. The most annoying thing is World Completion and the missing symbol next to your character when you haven’t done it. It might seem trivial to most, but when you suffer from OCD like I do, the lack of this symbol drives me to distraction.

With my personality, I really never should create alts but the reality is that when I see other classes and I don’t have one of them myself, I get itchy feet to create one: it’s a vicious circle. I suppose my itch to create alts shows that ArenaNet have done a good job in making all classes attractive and although I play many of them in sPvP, I only really love 3 of my 7. Unlike in other MMO’s, Guild Wars 2 is the first game where I’ve actually had decked out alts. I've dabbled at low levels on other classes in games such as Warhammer Online or World of Warcraft but always went back to my main (Shadow Warrior and Druid). In contrast and in Guild Wars 2, I’m constantly flip flopping between my Ranger, Mesmer and Guardian because all three are so fun to play (they also look amazing). With an expansion pack right around the corner, I really think it’s time I concentrate on just one. The game is simply too big to spread myself thinly over several characters, especially when after two years I’ve still so much to do.

If I was to weigh up whether I liked the Ranger or Mesmer more, it’d simply boil down to complexity of play and viability in both PvE and sPvP that would determine which I’ll went for. In its current state, the Ranger is pretty terrible in PvP but incredibly easy (and a bit dull) to play in PvE. In contrast, the Mesmer is still amazing in PvP and handles PvE pretty darn well too. I think if the Ranger gets access to a melee staff weapon set in the expansion pack, I’d be very tempted to return to it. However, despite my Ranger having two Legendary weapons I’m going to shelve her alongside every other alt. The only thing that could really throw a spanner in the works of my monogamous Mesmer relationship is if ArenaNet do in fact reveal a new class on Saturday. Should that happen, I could be back at square one making the decision to do all six of the things I hate, all over again.

"Do you have alts in the MMO's you play? Do you enjoy having them? Do you avoid alts at all costs? Let me know!"


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Last Updated: Mar 13, 2016

About The Author

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Lewis currently splits his time between Heroes of the Storm, Battlerite, and World of Warcraft, having covered MOBAs and MMOs for many years.

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