Tag: GW2

04 Sep

The Beginning of a Long Journey [GW2]

This past week has been all about Guild Wars 2, well mostly anyways. Since I pre-purchased the game, I was able to hop on for headstart and I never looked back. Starting off, I was unable to get the names I wanted but I was able to tact on a last name to remedy that situation.   Although, I named my human necromancer Cáde, which in hindsight wasn’t the best idea since if I’m talking to some in PMs, I need to talk to them first or they need to dig in a menu for my name since most people are not familiar with alt key shortcuts for special characters.

Naming conundrums aside, I’ve been having a ball with the game. After reserving a name for a cherished friend I moved on to create a necromancer and norn thief. The human necromancer was a no brainer for me with the story I had setup for myself – street rat, lost sister, attuned to Grenth – but I made a bit of a gamble choosing a Norn to go with the Thief profession. I love the class a lot but, my early adventures with the Norn race during beta let me very disappointed.

During the early betas, all the dialogue felt like it was forced bravado. Everyone was gun-ho 110% of the time to the point where they all felt really one dimensional and it didn’t feel real. However, they a lot of changed that overall made the race feel a lot better while retaining that gun-ho super positive attitude that represents the Norn. So for the moment I’m enjoying my Norn Thief and sometime down the line I will pick up the Asura since I really enjoyed my time with the race during BWE 3.


25 Mar

Character Diversity: The Many Flavors [GW2]

Articles, Guild Wars 2, MMOs by Tramell

Being able to create something unique, to be able to set yourself apart from the crowd is what character diversity is about. It can be a unique look, playstyle or story but, it also means much more than that. Depending on how the game allows you to put your spin on something it can often lead to something more than a personal creation. If you are allowed to make choices in a story, it can lead to excellent dialogue between players when discussing the specifics. Allowing a player to tweak how there character performs allows the spreadsheet masters to create something they are satisfied with and allows them to discuss the different ways a character can be optimal. Even a certain playstyle can shed light on something you never would have experienced with the way you play. Guild Wars 2 allows players to do all of the above.

Obviously, the first step in character diversity is creating a character. As you know there are five races to choose from, each has their own special characteristics. You will be able to choose the fur pattern of a Charr character while the Norn allows you access to unique body tattoos. Along with this, you also get all the bells and whistles. You can select body type, hair, face type, facial features, and dyeing your starter gear.

Aside from a unique look that allows you to create a bond with that character there are also a number of professions to choose from that dictate how you play. There are eight professions in the game and they range from the powerhouse Warrior, the protective Guardian to the Mesmer, an illusion specialist. Each class has something that sets them apart e.g., the Mesmer creating illusions, a Necromancer using pets and death shroud, the Engineer using a variety of gadgets including turrets.


24 Feb

News Blitz and Confirmations [GW2]

Games, Guild Wars 2, MMOs by Tramell

I imagine Guild Wars fans have been in both heaven and hell this week when ArenaNet lifted a press embargo that allowed various site talk about their experiences from the most recent closed beta. I learned quite a few things when sifting through all the information. Similar to SW:TOR, I believe ArenaNet is on to something with their dynamic event system and the way it affects the journey. WvW still intrigues me and Elisabeth Cardy of Massively has given us some insight on crafting, a rarely talked about feature of the game.

Reading Tap Repeatedly and Kill Ten Rats, Ravious and Lewis B. touched upon some of the features that initially drew my interest into Guild Wars 2. We are all use to that guided leveling experience, but Guild Wars 2 breaks away from that. In a given area, they give you a handful of hot spots that have various tasks that need to be carried out in order to gain the favor of a particular NPC.

The difference here is that there is choice. You can choose how you want to proceed with a particular NPC. You can collect berries for a farmer, help them grow their corn, or kick trees and lower the spider population to make the area safe for baking. I am sure I just combined three different farmers, but you get my point. Reading the above posts confirms the idea that I had in my head, that the world is at your fingertips.


20 Sep

The Ties that Bind: The Guild System [GW2]

Articles, Guild Wars 2, MMOs by Tramell

There has been a lot of talk about the guild system in Guild Wars 2, some good and a lot of bad. To bring you up to speed, ArenaNet is allowing players to join more than one guild with the exception of only being able to represent one guild at any given time as well as, only seeing that particular guild’s chat. There are a wide arrange of issues people have come up with regarding the new system.

People think that it will cause people to be “flexible” with their loyalties, hardcore progression guilds will fall by the waist side, all hell will break loose and demon munchkins will eat all your snacks; you get the point. Well let me tell you, it isn’t all that bad. I played Final Fantasy XI for a few years and they had this exact type of guild system. It worked there and it will work here.

First and foremost, lets lay down the fears about loyalties, people in theory want to join your guild because you both have the same purpose/goals or they’re your friends or family. If people loyalties are really an issue for you, check yourself first and evaluate how you run your guild. You might be running your guild in a heavy-handed way that only a select few will tolerate to achieve their goals.


01 Sep

Pax Prime 2011: Guild Wars 2 Preview

Guild Wars 2, ArenaNet’s sequel to Guild Wars has really stood out among the rest because of their innovative ideas: Creating a Dynamic event system that does away with the standard quest and progress playstyle; ditching the holy trinity and allowing all classes to tank, DPS, support, and heal in their own way. These new ideas as well as continuing their no-subscription model has made this game soar to the top of everyone’s lists.

For Gamescom and Pax, they showed off PvP for the first time. Conquest is the game and Khylo is the location. Players battle one another to take over key locations, with the assistance of a trebuchet; the task isn’t easy as players can always bomb the other team out of a control point. Movement and teamwork are key as points are gained by defeating the other team in combat and controlling the points; the first to 500 wins.

Aside from PvP, they have also introduced new areas in PvE for players to explore. Players had the opportunity to experience the Charr starter area and witness the ghosts of Ascalon first hand. Players could also play as the Sylvari, a race of honorable plant humanoids as well as the tiny Asura, a race of very intelligent people in the Sparkfly Den where the Undead are laying siege to the area.

10 Aug

Sylvari’s Soul – A Moment of Clarity and Audio [GW2]

Guild Wars 2, MMOs by Tramell

Day 2 comes with Angel Leigh McCoy, one of the writers on the Guild Wars 2 design team to talk with everyone about the beginnings of the Sylvari and goes in-depth about the mysterious plant race.

Sylvari are born from the Pale Tree, a mystical magical tree that provides them with basic knowledge and memories resulting in a very unique birth. They are born in adult form with the first moments of birth being a key moment to their survival as a Sylvari male describes the experience as falling from a very high cliff when they emerge from their pods.

Sylvari Birth

An interesting piece of information as I never really considered being born from a pod to be disorienting and being describe as much of a hazard as childbirth. I wonder if those who succumb to the nightmare had a bad ‘birthing’ experience.


08 Aug

Sylvari Redesign – Barbie Elves to Plantnoids [GW2]

Guild Wars 2, MMOs by Tramell

Arena Net has finally lifted the curtain on the Sylvari redesign starting with a blog entry from Artist Kristen Perry. The Sylvari was designed with three words in mind noble, beautiful, and plant. With that ideal, the initial designs usually weighed towards one end or the other. The initial designs that we seen in-game were definitely very beautiful but it felt very elf like and Anet went to the drawing boards.

The Design Process

Kristen talks about some of the research she did when she started creating the new Sylvari. She found two prevalent concepts painted humans with leaf accessories or just plain outright plant monsters. From the typical elven influenced humanoids that have a coat of green paint for skin, to Dryads that featured bark like skin to differentiate itself from humans and to her it felt a bit like stage make-up. Then dipping into the more monstrous types of creatures where she felt they would lose the beauty part of the Sylvari. Nothing really came together as she wanted to design the Sylvari from the ground up and not create models that the only difference between them and humans were make-up or accessories.


07 Jul

Guild Wars 2 – A Tour through Divinity’s Reach

Games, Guild Wars 2, MMOs by Tramell

Albert a moderator at Guild Wars Online, a Spanish Guild Wars 2 community web-site has created some magnificent fan-made videos. This one in particular below is a in-depth look at the last remaining Human City, Divinity’s Reach. He really breaks it down by examining the map, the architecture, the culture as well as in-game footage of the various districts, events and the instanced home. He also takes it a step further by discussing what could have inspired the design of Divinty’s Reach ranging from real world cities to created cities found in famous movies. The video is about a half hour long but trust me, it’s worth a watch.


28 May

MMORPG: Class Bonanza II

Games, Guild Wars 2, MMOs by Tramell

Guild Wars 2

Guild Wars 2 combat is about being visually impressive, dynamic and visceral. Similar to Tera its about positioning and tactics that will win you the day. You see a centaur preparing to fire an arrow at you. You can freely dodge out of the way before the arrow reaches you. Work with allies to perform combos such as a fire wall created by Elementalist and a Engineer deploying a turret on one side of the wall and projectiles will do additional fire damage. Due the aesthetics of Guild Wars 2 everything has a visual impact. Glue Shot from a Engineer will leave a sticky brownish-white puddle, an Elementalist using one of their elite skills literally turns them into a tornado or Ranger visually letting loose a valley of arrows. With the unique mechanic of positioning and tactics the professions I want to play address this is a very interesting way.


The capstone of what a thief should be; a very agile and effective when getting the drop on someone at the expense of less protection and lower health. The Thief in Guild Wars 2 embraces this. They have the ability stealth which allows them to steal useful items from various enemies and use them against them as well the ability to shadow step which allows them to get in and out of combat with relative ease. Possessing the unique energy system called Initiative, which is similar to the energy bar most people are accustomed to with rogues except here in GW2 and their style of combat it more about a risk and reward then learning how to weave your attacks to maintain a constant source of energy. With the more powerful skills costing more initiative you have the make wise choices when playing the Thief. After getting some hands on time at Pax East 2011 with the Thief I look forward to playing it again.