I agree that it is a valid discussion, and I see no reason not to have one in a Moze thread. As it so happens, Moze was my first BL3 VH and is my main goto.
So, my thoughts, aside from specific suggestions in my other thread, are as follows:
Caveat - I have neither purchased nor played Arms Race. My opinion of it comes from observation of marketing releases and other people’s feedback juxtaposed against my playing experiences with the BL franchise.
First and foremost I agree that the mode as conceived of and executed sounds dull and the opposite of fun… for me. I am one of those “narrative” types that Randy felt would not be interested and he was correct. Honestly I have no idea why anyone would have even considered that this new “mode” would be anything other than a “meh” snooze-fest and spent their money upfront, ESPECIALLY after the degradation in content delivery across the last year. I will stop there, else I may devolve into an actual rant that would prove most unhelpful to anyone.
I am also in the camp of, “Hey, howzabout putting more emphasis on addressing the plethora of issues and concerns from your existing community before announcing a new Season Pass that forces GBX into a new legal commitment of resources within a short time frame (and “short” here takes into account the ongoing pandemic constraints).”
Under the circumstances, and given the lack of focus on existing issues, it would not surprise me that this was a half-baked, cash grab, plain and simple, most likely using some test area that some of the devs threw together for their own uses. Though as to whether said alleged cash-grab was due to personal greed on Randy’s part or pressure from investors to meet their greed, or some shortfall of earnings that has placed GBX in a precarious position financially, who can say?
However, after quietly watching GBX from afar over the years, I could also believe that Randy and his team(s) actually believe this mode to be fun and a worthwhile pursuit. As such, and if I am correct in this hypothesis, I also think that they will be watching the responses to see how they can expand their core idea in the future. Think of it as Arms Race 1.0. In that sense, now is certainly the time to provide constructive feedback so that they can tweak things to keep people interested.
Towards that end, I feel that there are two directions feedback can provide. The first is to, let’s say, “enhance” Arms Race as it is now to make it more enjoyable. Although, if I am correct that GBX itself thinks that the core concept of guns only, no skills is fun and worthwhile, then all suggestions to “add skills back in” will fall on deaf ears. It would be like asking and expecting Randy to do away with Mayhem Mode completely, which he will never do given that it is the central theme of ALL of BL3’s marketing campaigns.
However, there is a second direction for feedback and that is this. What other, similar “modes” could be added to the mix that players might be willing to participate in. That is where suggestions of “Rogue-like” and others come in. In other words, in addition to Arms Race mode that has no skills, what other modes would you recommend (and some of these might have skills)?
That is my overall take.
So keeping all that in mind, after having bought and played the new mode, what are your thoughts on what would make the current form of Arms Race better and more playable/re-playable, other than adding skills back in? Some ideas I have heard are simple items like adding vending machines to the starting area and allowing fast travel back to the starting area after a run (which I hear are both currently unavailable for who knows what reason). Others include adding more maps areas, toning down the Murdercane times to allow for more exploration, adding more variety of bosses and so forth.
Or was there something else that you wanted to discuss? You did mention that you liked the mode but thought it might not be what the game needs at this time. What did you mean by that? Do you have any examples of what you think the game does need or could use (other than addressing existing bugs, etc.)? Are there other ideas that could constitute another “mode” that you had in mind?