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I do agree with some people that the focus of this game is the OW-PvP and its overall economic consequences, but I fail to see how the implementation of some sort of instanced PvP would be that bad.
You see, I don't think this idea would be actually against the game's theme. You already have hellgates and GvGs, which fit perfectly on the Albion Mall game. You already have yellow zones, you have duels, so why not implement some sort of queue for arenas in a way it does not devalue the main feature of the game (OW-PvP)? I don't understand the need to be so scared of it to the point of jumping to grab your scythes and pitchforks when you read about it.
I do believe Sandbox Interactive can build a system in which people that are on a short session or just want some practice/fun with friends can play. The important thing is that it cannot bring important consequences to the open world so the "sandbox" element is protected. If you want to play Albion Gold Mall arenas, do it, but it won't bring silver, fame, gear or any type of reward (perhaps besides some ranking) that changes the open world and its dynamic. There, the Albion's style is protected.
This game has a combat that is evolving so much. There is lots of potential to create a competitive alternative to keep people logging and no need on being so quick against it.