Casinos don’t talk back…
I started playing Gems of War when it first came out because I was looking for a match 3 game that didn’t end and I really, REALLY liked Puzzle Quest 1 and 2. I quit, because I felt like I would never get anywhere. 100 souls doesn’t go far, neither does 10k gold. An Arena run was out of the question because I could barely get gold chests. But my team was good enough without getting more troops. I was winning fairly quickly (back on normal speed), and was completing the kingdom quests without much struggle. Why did I need troops? Well, getting something “NEW” and shiny, it was pleasing. Dopamine, love my dopamine.
I eventually quit playing, though, still feeling like I’d never get anywhere. Between then and a few years later, I decided to go for it again. My buddy was getting a high status in Rocket League trading for being a middleman (helping people trade items in that game for real cash value). Since I enjoyed playing Rocket League more than trading, I told myself I’d just become a “Gemsies God”. Money was fine, so I spent about 400 bucks (VIP 8), then some more on gems, some growth packs, whatever have you else.
Soon enough I was wondering why anybody would use anything other than Kraken, and if you track my forum history, I sounded much like the folks posting about Divines sound now. I was pissed. Why would you NOT use Forest Troll, Kraken, Kraken, Mab? I was looking for something to do, because Mythics were still out of my reach and grinding PVP for “fun” stopped being, well, fun… becauseI had the best team. There was nothing else TO get.
At that time, I went from random public guild to random public guild, mostly dead guilds, and put gold into them to gather souls/gems/gem keys. I’d easily finish those tasks, leave, and then do the same thing over on the next guild. This put me at a lot of resources, and a lot of chests, all for the dopamine rush of seeing a light blue troop pop up so I could finally have a Mythic.
Well, one day, I got Plague. I was excited. My girlfriend was here, watching me blow money on the game. She didn’t mind, as she did the same for Smite, as she enjoys the cosmetic items. She was happy for me… for the 10 minutes it took for me to realize that my Mythic, the one I wanted so badly… sucks.
I shrugged it off and continued to play and put money into the game. I liked the game. The game was fun. I wasn’t paying to get a Mythic, I was simply paying to support the developers for a job I thought was well done at the time.
After some time, I joined a guild that found me on the forums, Enchanted. They were/are all very good to me, great people. Team builds were discussed, I set up a nice dragon team for myself, everything was fine. I was progressing quickly due to the time I spent playing, and a few months later I moved into the main guild within the same family, Magix.
I met more great people, got some more great teams, shared info, got info, made friends. It was fun, still it was fun. All complimented by the dopamine rush of unlocking new Mythic and legendary troops as I went along.
I then decided I have outgrown Magix, as participation at that time was dwindling and I wanted to explore the world, so to speak. I joined up with AWR. More good people, more good teams, more friends. I left briefly and went to Solophobia, and met even MORE good people. I then went back to AWR, and am in it now.
My guild hopping was the beginning of the end, little did I know. I was trying to find something to do in a game that left me with nothing. Around this time, Raids and Invasions were there. So my brain decided it’d be fun to stick around and find a guild that has a higher gold requirement for people who don’t want to do those events. Both Solophobia and AWR offered that to me.
I decided that maybe some interaction on the forums would spice things up, and so I watched some streams, streamed some myself, and carried on.
The more I watch the interaction on the forum, both from members and devs, the less I want to play. There is clearly a large divide between people who think the Divine race is overpowered. That’s fine. I have all of those troops. My bigger issue is that after a year and some months of using “those troops”, I’m not amused anymore. No more “NEW” Mythics, just orbs, or class points, or what have you that costs money.
If all of the “gem sink” events weren’t pay to play/win/buy a leaderboard spot, I’d love the fuck out of 'em. But there’s an energy system now, and thousands of dollars could be spent to get the latest “NEW”, the orbs.
Class events, yeah, I’d max them all out, kingdoms, sure! But not for cash. I like to play EXPANSIONS, not BUY the same old shit 4 times (Raid/Invasion/Pet/Class). That’s DLC locked behind DLC that you can purchase as many times as you want, to ultimately get the final reward of a Mythic pet, a maxed class, or an orb that you don’t need unless you REALLY want a USELESS, WORTHLESS Mythic.
So I interacted on the forums some more, my resentment building with each post. The more the developers try to justify, or say that these events are not “pay to win/play”, the more sour I become.
Gambling, gacha games, business, I get all of that. I don’t regret the money I spent on this. I did it, first and foremost, because I LIKED the game. Now, I’m gambling for no reason. I stick around for no reason. My brain tells me that I need to stay in AWR, to get legendary tasks, because they could contain a Mythic. What Mythic do I want that I don’t already have? None of 'em. I’d play with Worldbreaker for about 15 minutes before realizing that he can’t come close to being as fast as my Divine team, and then back to this it would be.
So the gambling is over, and the friends I made can keep contact with me if I leave, so what is keeping me here? Nothing.
Perhaps if I did not witness the responses and justifications for all the pay to win/play bullshit, I’d stick around. As it stands, I’m going to gamble in a casino, which I know will fuck me over. But unlike the devs, casinos don’t talk back.