I’m not a fan of 2FA. I think the implementation is garbage for the most part and only leads to more information being exposed. That said, some small minded people have been begging for SmileGate/AGS to implement this feature as a result of botting. I’ve said that increased security measures only add to the hassle of a bad game design and pretty much I have zero desire to give up my phone number to a company that I feel is unreliable, whether it’s Steam, AGS or SmileGate handling the 2FA portion. Already, I get spam emails trying to fish me for information to my number through and I believe that my number got leaked through one of these information leaks. I don’t want more of this happening so this requirement probably means the end of the game for me.
Truthfully, I have not been feeling positive about this game lately. It’s gotten to the point where I can’t progress much more, I’ve lost too much motivation, most of my friends stopped playing and I’m just wasting too much time every day without being able to push further. With the upcoming Vykas raid, I feel that SmileGate/AGS is making the same if not worse mistake that MMORPGs make in that the only way to progress is through narrow funneling. Already, I am too behind and can see that not only is the event loop that defines most MMORPGs the same, the design flaw that to me kills games like this over time is something that the company responsible for this game refuses to acknowledge. That design flaw is what I call focusing on a trend.
What does that mean though? It’s basically a narrow viewpoint where the company limits its audience on a horrible bet that the hardcore people will carry the game. It’s similar to what you may see with fashion or entertainment. Those who do not play into this trend end up being alienated while this small group of people dominate. One of the most glaring examples of how this occurred was during the early days of World of Warcraft where the “cool kids” had all the epic gear and would sit around in their respective faction cities bragging. Once LFR etc came about, it diminished their “coolness” even though the game opened up for more people. Naturally, a great deal of fighting resulted and you can see how the game now is probably at an all time low (for more reasons than this but I’m dead certain that these two sides did little to help curtail the inevitable)
I think with Lost Ark the game only trended because it was new but it couldn’t hold people’s attention due to the various poor designs. For the most part, the game has similar qualities in monetization to other mobile games like a seasonal pass as well as a special currency to speed up progression. And a lot of the real frustration happens because of progression gating through randomizing ones chances of pushing forward. Because of these elements, the game is possibly more notorious since you aren’t exactly guaranteed to win through paying (whereas a game like Clash of Clans you know exactly what you are buying). The system in the east is called Gacha, made famous and I believe illegal in Japan because of the gambling nature.
And while those who are persistent can play the game without paying, I feel that the average player requires a dedicated group to really make significant progression. Without having that group they either have to excel at the game or open up their wallets to get where they need. Most people probably end up losing their motivation once the consistent failures start to hit. And once those failures and de-motivation kicks in, your investment starts to diminish.
For someone like myself, I was content up to a certain point and willing to accept that I would not be doing the higher up raids just because none of the people I wanted to play with had ever intended to return. But if I’m required to go through more hassle, I think I should just cut my losses at this stage and no longer waste more time worrying about progression. I can see from my vantage point how I just wouldn’t enjoy the narrow progression the game forces you through. Like in order to get to “the good stuff” you have to get the proper gear from your Abyssal Dungeons, etc. And I really don’t feel like putting myself through the 8+ hour hell of doing hardmode Valtan, etc. because the game forces you to do all the content for progression.
At least with Blizzard/World of Warcraft, their UX team realized at a certain point that the solo player is a use case they needed to design for. LFR and Dungeon Finder could be frustrating at times with wipes and the occasional troll/griefer, but more often than not, they allowed one to feel like they could progress especially when ones friends and guild members proved to be flakes or abandoned the game. Also, Blizzard made a use case for the hardcore players by providing mythic difficulties. There isn’t an option for that in Lost Ark. But then again if I were the CEO of that company, I’d probably fire the entire UX and product team on day one.
So this is it. I will say that the few months I got to play, it was fun. But this isn’t a game that I want to waste anymore time on if I don’t feel it’s rewarding anymore. I already regret in some ways installing the game because it took a good chunk of my valuable time up and there’s no getting that back. But if I stop now, I should be able to focus on things that matter again.