The old system for primary skill unlocking was fine, it got people used to their skills before they unlocked new ones and they did it for each individual weapon so they helped guide players into all their skills gradually, but not too slow either. As for utility unlocks, I would suggests unlocking the first at level 3, letting new players dabble with choices and their first 3 skill points and then unlocking at the same rate as before patch. 35 levels to unlock all utility slots is just extending the time without any reason to. Like I said, most players should be comfortable around level 15 with general skill flow and even if you wanted to be safe it shouldn’t take longer than level 20 to be familiar with choosing and playing around with all 3 utilities. Level 30 was a good place for elite skills too as by then people would have gotten familiar with their builds and playstyles by then.
I think 30 is a little late to be introducing traits. I feel like 15 or 20 would have been better to teach players how to modify their skill bars even more with traits. I would suggest introducing trait points (their first one and minor traits) at level 15 and then major traits at level 20 would be beneficial to bringing them through progression. More importantly, I feel like there should be introductory traits, as in, upon unlocking major traits, there should be a selection of traits (maybe the 5 number 1 traits) for new players to experience it while the idea of traits is still fresh in their minds. Maybe to mimic the current trait unlock system an auto-spawning quest or instance could appear with objectives for them to unlock a selection of traits.
While a reduction in the learning levels as proposed above would solve the first part of this problem, I would like to say some things about how to fix trait unlocking. I was waiting and hoping that they would change the way traits unlocked in this feature patch but they haven’t and so I feel it is time to bring my suggestions.
I like the idea of the current trait unlocks but they are tedious for players with many alts. I thin that they should be account unlocks as opposed to character unlocks. This would help prevent players with 30 alts from having to run around collecting traits over and over again, or resorting to buy gw2 gold with skill points that particular character doesn’t have.
If account binding traits is something that isn’t on the table (it should be), then perhaps making it possible for any profession character to buy trait books for other professions would help make this easier. I have loads of skill points locked away behind different professions that I can’t use to help my alts and I feel like being able to would soften the tediousness of the process. At least for me, this part is over because after my engineer I’ll have 1 of each profession for farming skill points to help bring my other alts into their trait builds.
When I called this section The Old, I really wasn’t referring to the old system though. I just felt that this part wouldn’t fit very well in my presentation for my suggestions earlier. So The Old was actually referring to the original guild wars. As someone who very recently experienced the new player experience in Guild wars, there are some things that I feel could transfer over to GW2 very easily and to great benefit.
In GW1, new characters entered the game with the ability to choose whether to go through a tutorial mode or to skip it while in a mission instance. I think this could be reworked for GW2’s benefit. After all, we have a starting instance, but it doesn’t actually teach you anything. It could be used to teach the basics of battle and death and downing and skills just like it did in GW1. Maybe even introducing merchant types could work within the instance. Rather than the current new system of teaching new players how to play, I felt I learnt so much about GW1’s system in so short a time because of how it was presented. explanations with actions. Literal hand-holding as opposed to artificially extended unlocks that don’t really serve to put learning into practice.
As an anology, currently what GW2 is doing is that everyday, someone gives a boy one part of a fishing rod and tells him a little about that part and what it does, giving him new reels, new lines, new baits, one by one a day at a time. Maybe the boy figures it out and learns how to fish on his own with all these parts. But GW1 takes no chances. On the first day, the teacher gives the boy the rod and the reel, tells him to put the bait on the hook and throw and rigs a fish to bite. The boy learns how to fish and slowly, as the boy fishes, the teacher comes and introduces him to new things, like better reels, different baits and etc. To me, the second way seems like a better way to teach.