Beta phase 4 is over tomorrow morning, so since I had a chance to play (I've been playing since Beta phase 2), I thought I'd just throw out some thoughts. I'll have an article out around the middle of this week on warfronts and groups, but here's just a few fragments going around my head.
-Rifts are still dynamic and fun and unexpected. I enjoy getting loot from them, even slowly, and it's awesome that it's based on individual contribution, not a roll for loot. If you are active, you'll get prizes. Yay! I also think they lowered the emblem requirements for the level 13 blue gear? In Silverwood I seem to recall them being 10 emblems a piece; in Freemarch they were 3-5 depending on the item. I could just be remembering incorrectly though.
-Mounts at 20 are WONDERFUL. Walking takes so much time, especially when hunting rifts. The 3+ platinum cost is a little high, but I easily had it without ever using the AH.
-Warfronts are good in that you can remotely queue. Press k to bring up the PvP tab, and it shows what ones you are eligible for, how long of an average wait you'll find, and give you an option to queue up for it.
-I'm still blown away by the potential with the soul tree system. SO MANY CHOICES!
-Piggybacking off that, as pet hp seems bugged out of combat to restore almost instantly to full, Necro/Anything is pretty OP for leveling and soloing. You have literally no downtime.
-The dungeons actually involved some strategy! We died a few times, but getting back was pretty easy.
-The GMs are hilarious with their server-wide messages. At one point there was an unchecked giant invasion and the GMs taunted the players in Meridian for not going after them.
-Unlike before, after playing almost 18 hours in this Beta, the shine has come off a little. These are mostly a list of complaints. Note: NONE of them are game-breaking. All of them can and probably will be fixed or expanded upon. And some might just be my ignorance.
-I hate walking. Would some automatic transportation kill the game? On the one hand I can see how it makes you more aware of what's going on around you, but on the other hand... ugh. It takes forever to get from one place to another.
-I'm not sure why there is a Greater Planar Essence for sale in King's Retreat when you don't get a container for it until Stonefield. Almost wasted a Heroic emblem on it before seeing that it was Greater.
-Warfronts are pretty neat, but they'll get old fast. They feel like old-school WoW battlegrounds... complete with the notoriety requirement for gear.
-Speaking of gear, well, I'll go on with that in my article
-I wish that there was a dungeon queue system similar to the warfront one. Waiting around in the capital for people to join really bites and gave me PTSD back to my FFXI days in Jeuno.
-Servers were less stable this time. I'm not sure if there were more people due to the pre-orders, or if people just knew where to go during events now, but the servers crashed twice and had to be reset once, and I had terrible lag several times. On the plus side, all of the issues were fixed within a couple of minutes.
-I like that I can solo rifts... but I can only solo minor rifts, for minor loot. Elites really are elite; they hurt! I guess it's a good thing to need more people, but I do like being self-sufficient for the good items as well
TL;DR: Warfronts were fun, servers were a bit less stable, Necromancer is OP for leveling, and while I had several small issues this beta was even more fun than the last!
Well, those are my first thoughts! Anyone else?