Games are huge endeavors. When someone goes to create a game, whether it be an indie or AAA title, there is a huge amount of work that goes into it. From the initial gameplay mechanics to the story. But after all that work a game is going to seem similar to something else. Sure there are ways to get around this. The way that this is most often done is by reinventing at least one game element that has become so common no one even gives it a second glance. Now I could take the article in the direction that involves a number of games that changed just one thing or used controls in such a way that made what would have been a mediocre game into a truly great thing. But I have been playing a bunch of Guild Wars 2 as of late so I am going to talk about a few of the mechanics implemented or changed that set it apart as an MMO and make it a different experience.
Perhaps the most notable difference in Guild Wars 2 to other MMO's that I have played is the quest system. In most MMO's you go to a quest giver in order to get any direction on what to do. And while yes, there are still a few of these for the main story quests in Guild Wars 2, the majority of your quests will be given when you enter an area and awarded after you fill a progress bar doing any number of things. I have been in quest hubs where the completion requirements were kill grubs, stop thieves, protect the building, and taste test beer. There was no limit to how much of which one you could do to finish the hub. Once finished you check your mail and there is a monetary reward. This seems to have really streamlined the process of leveling through questing as you don't have to waste time going back and forth to quest givers. Lastly if you come to a player that is having a few issues you can help him and get rewarded for it. This helps promote team work within the Guild Wars 2 community.
As you travel around the world you activate way points just by passing them. Then, when you want to travel back to an area you just go to the map, select the way point, pay a small fee, and you are there instantly. You don't have to actually be at a way point to travel to one which makes going from one area to another. This is much nicer to the traditional having to travel to a flight point and waiting for your transportation to get you there.
Last thing I am going to talk about is professions. Normally you gather items and they take up your inventory until you make something with them. Guild Wars 2 gives you special storage for these items. From the upper right of your inventory screen select the drop down and deposit collectables. This moves the items you would collect for your professions to separate storage from your bank and the bags you carry. This allows for massive hoarding should you change your mind on what profession you work on later. Changing professions is also pretty easy. It costs come coin but changing from one profession to another does not lose your skill in the old profession.
And there you have it. Overall all three of things are small changes to the MMO genre, but these changes make the game overall more fun, and in my opinion easier to play for the more casual gamer that I have turned into. Do you have any other games that you find made a small change that made all the difference for you? Sound off below.