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Guild Wars 2 – Why Too Much Siege is Bad

Something we have been running across more and more in Guild Wars 2's world vs world system is a high population. Generally, we do not have too many people in our zones, but as of lately we have been hitting the cap, bringing on a queue. While this in itself is not such a big problem, there is a big issue that often arises at around the same time: too much siege ends up being deployed. Through this article I want to look at the situation and why it is causing problems. I am also going to look at a possible solution. So let us begin!

Setting Up Siege – The First Problem

For all intents and purposes, when we join world vs world we are pretty disorganized. Even when we have a commander tag up and people are following him around, we end up with people all over the place. Some are there for the world vs world, some are there for small group combat (usually doing a karma train), some are there knocking out their world exploration or achievements, and some are there for their daily quests or for farming materials. There are just too many reasons to hit up the different battlegrounds.

This disorganization gets even worse when it comes to actually taking part in sieges. We all rush over to a keep or tower and people start throwing down their siege. It is not uncommon for there to be many Flame Rams, for example, placed at a gate (many being 4 or more). Along with this, we also often see a lot of ranged siege weapons placed everywhere, some of which are used and some that are not. What I am trying to say here is not so much that people love to place their siege (although they do), but that we end up with a lot of extras that are not even being built or used; just deployed. “But this is their money so they can do what they want with it. Why do you care?” you ask. Because there are siege limit caps.

Siege Limit Caps

As stated previously, there are siege limit caps. These are a lot like the population cap; when there is too much siege that has been deployed, you are no longer able to deploy any more. I can not even count the number of times we have been trying to take over a keep and have run out of siege (due to the cap) in between the gates or right after we start. It is by far annoying and there is really nothing that can be done with it other than to hope some siege weapons are destroyed. This is because you are not able to destroy your own siege!

That is right, you are not able to destroy any of your own siege weapons. If your map is full of them already and you are not able to siege because of it, you are completely out of luck and will have to just try again later or hope that one of the enemy worlds is out there taking down some of the weapons for you. I have seen this process go on for hours, and it can be prolonged if there are more people out and about constantly trying to set up siege to take down a different structure than the one you are at. Fun, right?

Using Siege Limits As An Advantage

This is something that would definitely work, but we run in to the problem of disorganization again. The idea behind using the siege to our advantage is that if we do not ever take down enemy siege weapons, they can never build more. Of course this would also require the other world, as well as any solo or small grouped players to follow the same guidelines, which is pretty much never going to happen. On top of this, it does have its own problem associated as well: if you leave up the enemy siege weapons, they can take back the structures the weapons are near without having to throw out any more money at it. This is a big reason for destroying them; they then have to not only throw their money at it, but also supplies and time to get them deployed. This can help make the difference between players being successful in or failing their siege attempt.

There is one situation in which you want to leave up enemy siege, though, which is when things are placed away from their effective area. For example, if a Flame Ram is placed at a wall or far enough away from everything that it can not even hit anything. In these cases there is no reason for the enemy to have those siege weapons up, and they are still counting towards their cap. While this does not happen often, sometimes you will see it when a player decides to troll by throwing up weapons all over the place for laughs. I would argue, though, that this is a borderline exploit due to the way it affects everyone else on that server.

Avoiding Siege Limits – What to Do After It is Hit

There is really only one thing you can do when the siege limit is hit: take a break and go to another battleground. Each map is treated as a separate one, each with its own counters. So you are free to go between them while you wait for the siege count to drop on your original one and then return to it from time to time to check it out. This allows you to go about sieging and all, without letting the siege cap destroy your plans altogether.

There is another thing that you can work towards, although I have never gotten it to be successful. Figure out where the bulk of your siege weapons are (or at least those that are not in use) and try to get enemy players to chase you over to them. People love destroying enemy siege weapons, so although you may die while doing this, you could very well get someone to take down the weapon after they finish with you. To help increase the chances of success, mount the weapon when they come after you so that they will target you and it together.

A Solution for ArenaNet

This is something I have always thought was an obvious thing to add to the game: the ability to destroy your own siege weapons. I have no idea why this was never implemented. I could see it as being exploitable if everyone was able to access the option, but it could be set up to where only the person that laid the siege could do it. This would mean it is their money, and if they destroy it they are the ones who lost (so I do not see it as being exploitable). In fact, the system already allows a similar thing, where the person who sets down siege can kick off anyone else who tries to use it. Since this is already implemented, there is no reason not to allow the destruction option.

To make things a bit better for when people log out, the weapons could also go neutral after a period of time (say 15 minutes). After this point, they would be under the control over anyone and anyone could destroy them. This would help create a balance between when others are allowed to access the option and how long it should take to conquer a structure. If you have not broken in within 15 minutes of someone leaving, either you are not going to or that siege has already been taken down. Another rule that could be added here would be an option to where if someone has mounted the weapon within the past x period of time (say 10 minutes) it can not be destroyed either. This would help ensure that if someone is using the weapon, another player can not troll them and make it disappear.

I would suggest that if things become a bit more organized, also adding a counter somewhere on the screen that shows the total number of siege weapons and what the cap is. It could even go a step further and list them based on type (such as 5 Arrow Carts). And if they really wanted to go all out (after adding in the ability to destroy siege weapons you set up), they could add in markers to the map to show where all of the siege is so that people can go through and take care of any that are not still being utilized. All of this together would become a perfect solution for what is becoming a more and more complex problem.

Conclusion

I love how siege weapons in Guild Wars 2 work, but I also have an issue with the caps and how there is no way to avoid them. I could completely see this working in a game where there is a lot of organization, but in world vs world you rarely see everyone working together (and even then there are tons of rogue players running around either solo or in small groups). To have a system that affects all of the players on the entire map requires it to be set up in such a way that it is viable. How it is set up right now just does not work as it is intended, and it has been causing problems. Especially when someone decides that they want to troll and throw around a lot of siege for no other reason than for the laughs. If ArenaNet were to take my idea and implement it verbatim or alter it to fit their own visions, I think we could have a much more enjoyable world vs world system to hang out in.

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