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Guild Wars 2

Guild Wars 2 is revamping the new player experience

Fantasy, Game Mechanics, Patches, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Buy-to-Play

Darn it, I'm still getting the hang of this.  Can we call a do-over?
If you've been playing Guild Wars 2 since launch, you're probably intimately familiar with the ins and outs of the game's mechanics. Unfortunately, this doesn't necessarily translate for new players, who can find themselves overwhelmed in the early parts of the game with a wide array of statistics, abilities, game modes, and the like. Along with all of the other improvements the game is making in the September 2014 feature pack, the new player experience is receiving an overhaul.

Players will now receive a clear reward window indicating what is unlocked at each level, with features such as PvP and WvW initially locked away until higher levels so that players can familiarize themselves with the game systems first. Veteran players can still navigate to these features via the map at lower levels. The personal story is now tied into the story journal, major rewards have been reworked, and the interface will serve to more efficiently guide players to points of interest. Check out the full posting to see how leveling in Guild Wars 2 will get just a bit more friendly with the next major patch.

Guild Wars 2 previews crafting backpacks

Fantasy, Game Mechanics, Patches, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Crafting, Buy-to-Play

I said there's got to be some good reason for your crafting themed backpack, gold stack, turn around your gems are back, yeah.
Do you consider yourself nice and crafty in Guild Wars 2? Are you fond of being a master of your chosen profession? If so, you're going to be nabbing some nice upgrades when the September 2014 feature pack rolls out. For example, there's the new line of craft-based backpacks available to players that don't take much to make but show off just how good you can be at making stuff in the game. If you've ever wanted to haul around a miniature forge on your back as part of your wardrobe, your ship has come in.

Players can also look forward to new exceptional weapons that can either be crafted for leveling characters or found via exploration, giving your character a little boost while leveling through Tyria. There are also loot changes that make you more likely to receive items you can use on a character rather than receiving an endless string of greatswords on your Thief. Take a peek at the official post for more details.

Guild Wars 2's feature pack will improve dungeons and the crafting UI

Fantasy, Game Mechanics, Patches, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Dungeons, Crafting, Buy-to-Play

I think we can all agree that the Norn fellow on the right is quite striking and will hopefully show up in a variety of future promotional materials.
September is just around the corner, which means that the next major update for Guild Wars 2 -- the September feature pack -- isn't far behind. The pack aims to improve several parts of the game, starting by demolishing the concept of dungeon owners. Currently, the first player to zone into a dungeon is counted as the "owner" of the dungeon, which can lead to problems if that player disconnects; by contrast, after September there will be no dungeon owner, avoiding issues with progression if that owner leaves or gets kicked.

The game's crafting UI is also receiving an overhaul, making it faster and easier to access crafting sub-components without navigating away from the main item that you want to craft. The update will also bring a number of performance improvements to make the game run faster and better on various bits of hardware. Take a look at the full update for a few more details as the feature pack release approaches.

Guild Wars 2 improving megaserver guilds in September

Fantasy, Game Mechanics, Guilds, Patches, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Buy-to-Play

You'll have to come up with a whole new set of excuses for not joining guilds now.
Another feature pack is rolling out for Guild Wars 2 in September, and it's bringing improvements to guild functions along with it. It's starting with the rollout of global guilds, allowing the resources earned by a given guild on all worlds to feed into the same central group, rather than creating small-scale copies of the guild on every individual world. That includes guild vaults, guild merits, and guild influence, all of which will be pooled with the feature pack update.

Guild missions and finding allies on different maps will also receive improvements, making it easier to take care of objectives with your friends across the globe. The official post also discusses the language divisions found on European servers, with the team electing not to split players based upon language at this time to bolster population. Read the full update for more details on how the changes will affect guilds and players when the patch goes live in September.

Two senior staff members depart from ArenaNet

Fantasy, MMO Industry, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Buy-to-Play

There may be a few last accusations about who did or did not refill the coffee pot.
ArenaNet is going to be down two staff members in the very near future. Community Team Leader Martin Kerstein and UI Lead Kate Welch are both leaving the company; Welch's final day with the developer is September 4th, while Kerstein has apparently already departed. Both of their farewell letters speak highly of the team and give no cause for the departures, and neither yet has any announcements of future plans.

Both Welch and Kerstein have been working on Guild Wars 2 since before its launch. These departures come directly on the heels of the conclusion of the game's second season of living story updates.

[Thanks to Sharvis for the tip!]

Guild Wars 2 retools commander icons, fees

Fantasy, Game Mechanics, Patches, PvP, News Items, PvE, Guild Wars 2, Buy-to-Play

GW2As Massively's Anatoli Ingram discussed in his Flameseeker Chronicles column yesterday, Guild Wars 2's September feature pack will include significant changes to the commander system that marks player volunteers as leaders on various world maps.

After the patch, commander tags will become account-bound rather than character-bound, meaning your newbie Asura can strut around Metrica Province as if she owns the place. Consequently, tags will triple in price to 300 gold. Players will also be able to customize their icons with spiffy new colors intended to "facilitate a range of tactical uses" like organizing groups in PvE and PvP.

Already a commander? Lucky you: ArenaNet says you'll be grandfathered into the new system for no extra fee. The studio plans to consider "possibilities for recognizing experienced and prestigious commanders" in the future.

Guild Wars 2 plans siege additions for world-vs.-world PvP

Fantasy, Events (In-Game), Game Mechanics, PvP, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Dev Diaries, Buy-to-Play

GW2
As part of its September feature pack rollout, ArenaNet has today discussed the world-vs.-world improvements coming to Guild Wars 2 next month.

Specifically, the team is adding a new Siege Golem Mastery ability line, which renders your character "an unstoppable juggernaut of destruction" with super speed, AoE healing effects, and (of course) an ejection seat to amuse your guildies.

ArenaNet will also add consumable tricks; the first, called a Siege Disabler, is deployed like a grenade and disables weapons and golems and can be purchased with badges and coins rather than karma.

If you aren't into the PvP additions, well, you could always join the folks in Rata Sum protesting the absence of Super Adventure Box. [Thanks, thegirlwiththehair.]

Flameseeker Chronicles: Taking command in Guild Wars 2

Fantasy, Lore, Patches, Opinion, Guild Wars 2, Flameseeker Chronicles, Buy-to-Play

I hope you're not tired of my Elementalist yet, because I'm not tired of taking screenshots of her.
Last week, ArenaNet wrapped up Guild Wars 2's two-parter story arc, The Dragon's Reach. It's a doozy, especially since part one of the chapter was, in my opinion, the weakest of the living world story's second season so far. It wasn't bad, mind you; it just didn't leave me staring at my calendar in thwarted anticipation the way previous installments did.

Part two brings that feeling back, which is almost too bad since we're going to be waiting until autumn for the story to start up again. In the meantime, we've got a bunch of stuff to talk about, so jump past the cut -- but only if you're cool with spoilers for pretty much everything.

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How your Guild Wars 2 class will change in September

Fantasy, Classes, Patches, Previews, Guild Wars 2, Dev Diaries, Buy-to-Play

gw2
When Guild Wars 2's second feature pack crashes down on our heads next month, there will be none of us unscathed from its impact. A new dev diary posted today reveals that the feature pack will contain balance changes for all of the game's classes.

Among the changes are a rework of Elementalist and Thief grandmaster traits, love for Engineer kits and elixirs, an improved Spirit Bow ability for the Guardian, a revamp of the mimic skill for the Mesmer, improved survivability for the Necromancer, more flexible pet choices for the Ranger, and tweaks to the Warrior's adrenaline resource. Overall, it all sounds pretty positive, although there could be a nerf or two lurking in the mix.

Guild Wars 2 will let you replace PvP opponents with standardized clones

Fantasy, Patches, Previews, PvP, Guild Wars 2, Buy-to-Play

How you look and move in PvP is sometimes more important than just for cosmetic vanity, which is why Guild Wars 2 is planning to add "model standardization" as an option with the September feature pack.

In today's dev diary, ArenaNet explains that since all of the races and classes have different animations for the same skills, it might be difficult for competitive players to identify what's coming at them. By being able to replace all enemy characters with standardized human models, PvPers will be able to clearly identify the class, weapon, and skill animations being used.

The team's also finishing up work on two new sets of PvP-exclusive armor that draws inspiration from Guild Wars 1's Hall of Heroes. Players can earn one of those sets of armor by progressing with the new PvP reward track that's also slated for the feature pack update.

WildStar and Guild Wars 2 boost NCsoft profits

Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Aion, Lineage, Lineage 2, Economy, MMO Industry, Guild Wars 2, Free-to-Play, Blade & Soul, WildStar

ncsoft
The second quarter of 2014 was a very good time indeed for NCsoft, as the publisher announced today that revenues and profits are up thanks to WildStar's launch and Guild Wars 2's move into China.

In today's earnings report, NCsoft shows that sales went up 20% and operating profit increased 46% from the previous quarter. The company said that it saw a marketing expense increase due to WildStar and that Lineage "recovered meaningfully" during this period.

As for sales per game, Lineage is still at the top with 32.2%. Following that is WildStar (15.9%), Guild Wars 2 (12.6%), Blade and Soul (10.8%), Aion (10.4%), and Lineage II (7.7%).

Leaderboard: What the heck is Guild Wars 2's Pale Tree?

Fantasy, Polls, Lore, Guild Wars 2, Races, Leaderboard, Buy-to-Play

I've heard of Mad King Thorn, but this is ridiculous.
Since Guild Wars 2's humble beginnings, players have been debating the exact nature of the seemingly benevolent Pale Tree, an entity who has acted as a mother to the playable Sylvari race. Season two of the living world story has been throwing more fuel on this particular fire with almost every chapter, and this week's release of The Dragon's Reach: Part Two is no exception.

Since ArenaNet has announced a mid-season break in the story, it seems like a good time to cast our votes once and for all and ensure bragging rights for those of us who turn out to be correct. What's your favorite explanation for the existence of the Pale Tree? Click past the break to vote (but be warned that while this poll is spoiler-free, the comments may not be)!

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Gamescom 2014: Guild Wars 2 preps $150k prize pool tourney, feature pack

Fantasy, Events (Real-World), PvP, News Items, PvE, Guild Wars 2, Events (Massively's Coverage), Buy-to-Play

GW2
If you were wondering what ArenaNet has planned for the fall break in Guild Wars 2's living world story content, wonder no more: The studio has just announced the September feature pack, which brings both PvE and PvP upgrades to the game. "Living World Season 2 will be going on break for a while as we count down to the arrival of the [feature pack]," says lead developer Colin Johanson. "You can look forward to the return of Season 2 in autumn, and we'll announce the start date for episode 5 after the feature pack has been released."

ArenaNet's attention at Gamescom, however, has been focused on competitive play. In keeping with its e-sports goals, the studio unveiled the World Tournament Series, a Guild Wars 2 competitive championship co-sponsored by Chinese publisher KongZhong. With its $150,000 prize pool, the series will draw qualifying players from the upcoming Tournament of Glory and debut in Beijing this fall.

[Source: ArenaNet press release]

Guild Wars 2's living world mid-season finale launches today

Fantasy, Galleries, Screenshots, Events (In-Game), Patches, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Buy-to-Play

GW2
Guild Wars 2's latest content update, The Dragon's Reach: Part 2, launches today, opening a brand-new explorable area within Dry Top and adding PvP perks. Says ArenaNet,
A historic summit is about to take place in the spreading shadow of Mordremoth's advance, but not all of the world leaders have agreed to attend. Can you convince uneasy allies to come together and cooperate, or will lingering tensions spell Tyria's doom?
The launch brings to a close the first half of this current living world season; the storyline will resume "this fall.

PSA: If you log in while the story update is active and access the story journal, you can unlock the content for your account permanently."

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Gamescom 2014: Guild Wars 2 outlines convention plans

Fantasy, Events (Real-World), News Items, Guild Wars 2, Buy-to-Play

It's soft and furry.  Very much unlike Gamescom in every way.
Are you ready for a week of gaming news from Germany? Of course you are. Were you worried that Guild Wars 2 might not be part of the festivities? Of course it is. Yes, ArenaNet has gone to Gamescom 2014, complete with chances for fans to win plushies, shirts, and Collector's Editions of the game.

The Gamescom events will also include the All-Stars Tournament event. If you're not attending the convention in person, you can still watch the matches on Twitch and follow the developers on Twitter to get in on the giveaway action, assuming you're not too busy with the latest part of Living Story content to notice.

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