This "angrily barking at Trion" thing is hilarious, too. You seriously have to be confusing me with someone else, because at no point have I "angrily barked" at Trion. I've "angrily barked" at all the people flying in and making baseless accusations about my motives for twinking in the first place, and I've "angrily barked" at the people who make false statements, but I've never pitched the "woe is me" tent and yelled at Trion for nerfing a gametype I functionally played for a handful of evenings. I even provided a post with MAGICAL MATH regarding being competitive without needing the purple augment, top-tier gear, while in the same breath advocating for its removal -- but, clearly, I have an axe to grind, since my non-existent twinking advantage is gone.
You wonder why I "snap", and yet you continue to falsely represent my position in a further attempt to discredit me in this conversation. I have plenty of constructive things to add in the thread. I've added them. I've talked about time-to-gear, I've talked about genre expectations, I've talked about reasonable investment, I've talked about the traits of Rift, I've talked about the traits of progression-based MMOs, and I've shared my OPINIONs on the topic. Apparently it's only "constructive" if it's building towards the successful completion of the narrative you're trying to weave.
Yet after repeatedly telling me about how "50.5 hours was too much" and failing to make me decide that "yes, you're right, a one to two month investment in an MMO too much time to get competitive with people who have played since launch," you proceeded to attack my position that this is not unreasonable as being fueled by some secret, hidden resentment base regarding Trion's nerfing of a game type I didn't even play very much -- because I refuse to wholeheartedly and unconditionally accept your OPINION -- supported by math that really doesn't say ANYTHING except give a number you either feel is too long, not long enough, or just right -- is right and mine is wrong.
So, let me do some math to try and frame what I'm saying, since that seems to be the 'sticking point'
Llet's take a guild working on progression and trying to get T1 raid geared (arguably, HK is the 'middle tier' with ID's introduction, but let's say it's Experts - T1 Raid - T2 Raid). To get fully currency geared, you need to pick up 460 Marks of Ascension. I'm going to just ballpark things and say they can clear GP and DH in about two hours, clear the daily expert in 45m, and can do Warmaster and the three foci in RoS as well as up to Greenscale in GSB, in a combined, say, two and a half hours (this is sort of the situation the 'struggling' starter progression guilds were in when I maintained the Deepstrike raiding thread).
In a week's time, they're going to log about ten hours of 'raid time'. From the Expert Dailies, they'll get 14 Marks of Ascension. From GP, they'll get (and someone correct me if I'm wrong, it's been a long time since I've bothered with T1 10-mans) 12 Marks of Ascension. From DH, they'll get 12 Marks of Ascension. From RoS, they'll get 12 Marks of Ascension. From GSB, they'll get 12 Marks of Ascension. From the two weeklies, they'll pick up another, what, 6 Marks of Ascension? This puts them at, I believe, 68 Marks of Ascension in a raid week (if we assume they've got the talent, this could be estimated at about 78).
So, it's going to take about six weeks (or about sixty hours) of 'grinding' the PvE content (and I feel I'm being generous on the time, as you were) to get T1 raid geared (the 'middle-tier'), assuming they are playing with a guild who has clears in this time range, playing with a guild. This, of course, doesn't include the weapons or accessories, all of which are random drops and rolled upon by several people, and it also doesn't include the drop pieces that could be reasonable substitutes (but will eliminate the set bonuses).
Of course, this is going to get them well prepared to move on to the 'top' tier (or 'middle' tier), in Hammerknell, where the progression wall gets a little steeper (even with the nerfs) and they might require an even larger relative time investment to get where they need to be (especially considering they get fewer Greater Marks from the quests).
Thus, do I think that "50.5 hours" (edit: apparently queueing solo, fwiw) is an unreasonable metric for someone to be dps-competitive with players who have played since launch, especially in a gear and character progression driven genre like an MMORPG? No, especially since steps are being taken to bring down the size of the gap and the time investment required to get to it in the next patch anyway. Is that "constructive" enough for you, since I put some numbers with my opinion?
After all, if I, the ****ty player who could only compete on a twink and is secretly conspiring to undermine Trion's authority through my subtle campaign of "keep the grind for the lulz", could do it on all four callings, surely this mythical player who possesses the skill but gets stymied by the gear gap can do it.