Eve players use the word "grind" to mean things they have to do in order to get the ISK they need to PvP. Those that don't like PvP use the word to refer to activities that increase standings with NPC corporations or factions. I'm currently grinding level 4 distribution missions with the Sisters of Eve in order to not only get the loyalty points but to get full use of Sisters of Eve station services like refining for free (or in the case of the market at a vastly reduced price). With current standings of 5.68, I think I can finish my grind this weekend and then do a week or so of exploration and bookmarking systems before going back to another standings grind.
Guild Wars 2, on the other hand, is full of grind. Just a warning to all the crafters out there: gathering materials is a grind! The best advice for playing Guild Wars 2 is to not just play through the story and quest lines if you want to make gear that is useful as you level up. When I finished up Queensdale, the human starter area, I don't think I was level 15 in either of my crafting professions. I've spent my time the past couple of weeks gathering copper, cloth and leather in the attempt to level up. I think I'd rather mine in high-sec. Ugh! Hopefully once I hit level 25 in my crafting professions I'll have enough materials to make the unneeded items to level my crafting to the next level of items. On the plus side, since I've now hit level 20 because I get adventure experience for gathering and crafting I'm not worried about content being too difficult anymore. Of course, I am playing a ranger and I hear rangers are OP.
I think the reason that I find the grind in Guild Wars 2 more irritating than the one in Eve Online are my goals. In Guild Wars 2 my goal is to reach max level in adventuring and in all the crafting lines. I don't really have to have any intermediate goals because the game will supply those. That means making a lot of items that I'm just going to salvage to reuse the materials so I can craft more useless items. Sure, at the end of the line I can craft legendary items, but is the payoff after months of effort worth it?
In Eve, the goals I set are my own, so the grind is something I really impose on myself. Here are just some of the goals I've set over the past three years.
- Join Eve University and begin to get a clue how to play.
- Get jump clones.
- Get perfect refining for Wandering Rose.
- Get capability to manufacture all my own ammunition.
- Buy a Rupture.
- Buy a Cheetah.
- Buy a Hurricane.
- Buy a Maelstrom.
- Manufacture my own tech 2 ships.
- Get blueprints to make meta items from COSMOS missions.
- Set up a home in low sec.
- Upgrade exploration equipment.
In contrast to Eve, will the things I'm doing in this first tier of content in Guild Wars 2 prove useful further down the line except as a stepping stone to further content? Perhaps I'm wrong but I doubt it. Of course, I have to finish this stupid grind I'm on in order to find out.