There’s a lot of complaining about how people want the F2P factors tweaked, but this still feels like one of the most “honest” F2P games out there. The best way to spend money is to spend $50 on Deathknight armor roughly around the level you are, then peck your way towards VIP 5 via $5 diamond purchases on Sunday (limit 1/week). After that, any perks you get from spending money are so diminished I think anyone who really wants a P2W game would avoid this one.
You are at about the point where I think someone who plays 2-3 months today can reach pretty easily depending on how casual you are, especially with a guild. I think it still takes about a year to be “endgame”.
Balance is… not really there. The endgame meta has effectively 3 variants of the same team. “Having better luck” is the counter. Players look at it two ways:
- “Well, at least PvP matches are over quick and I can grind out trophies no problem.”
- “Ugh, I really wish I had to think and spend 3-5 minutes per match.”
Both are valid, but GoW is siding more towards “fast and brainless” in the modes you can play an infinite number of times. There are sigil-based weekly modes with scaling difficulty that require more thought, but the balance swings between “there are no good teams” to “there is one obviously good team”.
The main thing to consider when you return is, “Do I have time?” I feel like I"m making the most progress if I can spend 2-3 hours per day on the game.