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Guild Wars 2

Watch Guild Wars 2's official livestream show

Fantasy, Guild Wars 2, Livestream, Buy-to-Play

GW2
Guild Wars 2 has a new official livestream show that you can watch at 3:00 p.m. EST. The show's called Points of Interest and stars Kate Welch, Leif Chappelle, and Theo Nguyen. The first episode will be looking back at the Living World's Season 1.

You can watch the livestream after the break!

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Tara Strong on Guild Wars 2's 'British Harley Quinn'

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

Chances are that you've encountered a character played by Tara Strong, since the prolific voice actress sports a resume that reads like a gaming greatest hits list. It includes MMOs and sort-of MMOs like Star Wars: The Old Republic, Marvel Heroes, Infinite Crisis, and Guild Wars 2.

Strong's GW2 work goes under the microscope in ArenaNet's latest video release. It's basically a three-minute behind-the-scenes/interview mashup featuring Living World villainess Scarlet Briar, whom Strong describes as a "British Harley [Quinn]."

Click past the cut to have a look.

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Flameseeker Chronicles: Guild Wars 2 features that time forgot

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

The floor is lava! No, really. Run.
It's hard to believe it's the middle of June already. School's out, E3 has come and gone, and all that's left for us Guild Wars 2 fans to do is to pick up our World vs. World Spring Tournament rewards and kick back with a tall glass of omnomberry juice (pro tip: don't).

We're still two weeks out from the start of the living world's second season, and ArenaNet has so far been especially cryptic where the future is concerned. We've speculated all there is to speculate for now, and summer heat makes me cranky, so before we blast off to any new horizons, let's take a look back at a few of the unfinished, unimplemented, and underutilized elements of GW2 that could really use some catching up.

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E3 2014: Recapping Guild Wars 2's first season

Fantasy, Trailers, Video, Interviews, Patches, Guild Wars 2, Events (Massively's Coverage), Buy-to-Play

With Season Two of Guild Wars 2's living story starting up on July 1st, players are eager for more information. So far, only snippets and clues have teased fans. To try and glean more details, I sat down with Associate Game Director Steven Waller and Studio Design Director Chris Whiteside at E3 2014. Before moving on to what lies in store, however, the devs wanted to look back at the impact of the first season. Oh, and they offered a new trailer that adds a bit more fuel to the teasing fire!

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The Daily Grind: Should MMOs change fundamental design rules post-launch?

Fantasy, Business Models, Game Mechanics, Opinion, Guild Wars 2, Massively Meta, The Daily Grind

GW2
A few weeks ago, ArenaNet added a new buyable perk to the Guild Wars 2 cash shop: a crafting license that allows an account's entire roster of characters to pick up an extra craft skill. In other words, buying this license means your characters can run three production craft skills, not just the original two at a time.

My first reaction was wooo, awesome! But after some reflection, I wondered whether the change wasn't more than cosmetic. Having three craft skills on every character affects leveling rates and PvE zone population, inflates the item market, impacts the resource market, and could even alter whether players buy other items from the cash shop (like character and inventory slots). It's definitely more than just a fun cosmetic thing. While this tweak probably won't matter that much in the long-run of a game like Guild Wars 2, fundamental changes made midstream have certainly been known to haunt some games forever.

What do you think -- should MMOs change core design rules post-launch? Where do you draw the line between a little quality-of-life tweak and a major shift in design philosophy?

Every morning, the Massively bloggers probe the minds of their readers with deep, thought-provoking questions about that most serious of topics: massively online gaming. We crave your opinions, so grab your caffeinated beverage of choice and chime in on today's Daily Grind!

One Shots: Fare game

Screenshots, Culture, Guild Wars 2, One Shots, Final Fantasy XIV, Miscellaneous, WildStar

wildstar
We're starting to get a lot of WildStar submissions these days following the launch, which is something I certainly encourage (and where are you people with awesome Elder Scrolls Online pics, by the way?). Today we've got two for our player screenshot column, starting off with reader Darla and a very sour Chua.

"The cabbies in this game don't shut up and my Chua is having a tough time coping," Darla moans. Secretly, I think she loves the weird chatter coming from the driver, but Chua have a reputation to maintain, you know?

It's not just cabbies and expensive space fares after the break, but also pictures to vibrant that they will make your ocular cavities weep saline fluid!

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Guild Wars 2 announces its second Tournament of Legends [Updated]

Events (In-Game), PvP, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Family, Buy-to-Play

GW2
ArenaNet has just announced Guild Wars 2's Tournament of Legends 2, the prelim matches for which are scheduled to begin in July for European and American participants. PvP-inclined players can sign up as early as this Friday. Says the studio,
The sign-ups for Tournament of Legends 2 will be handled on a first-come, first-served basis and will accommodate up to 128 teams. Participating teams will be evenly divided between four qualifier tournaments, and the top two teams from each qualifier will move on to the Tournament of Legends Championships. All matches will be hosted on the weekends, with qualifying matches beginning in July. You can expect a full schedule of dates and times to be released later this week.
Prizes for the top-finishing team include legendary weapons; other competitors are eligible to win precursors, Black Lion Weapon Tickets, and an exclusive llama minipet.

[Update: Signups are now live!]

Guild Wars 2 introduces DVR-like functionality to the Living World

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

Guild Wars 2
If you're already a fan of Guild Wars 2's Living World feature, you may also be happy to hear about the Living World Journal announced today by developer ArenaNet.

The Living World Journal allows players to save and revisit each new episode of the Living World with what is described as DVR-like replay functionality. With more than two dozen free Living World updates, and Season 2 dropping on July 1, the new journal will especially help those who haven't had a chance to keep up with the intense update schedule for the game.

Game Director Colin Johanson comments, "With this addition to the story Journal, content from Living World episodes will be a mix of new story steps and open world content. Story steps will work just like existing story steps in the game today by taking you on a journey specific to your selected episode, which ties into a broader narrative from the season's continual story progress. Open world content additions to Living World updates will permanently expand or change the world of Tyria and will tie to the theme and story of the episode."

Flameseeker Chronicles: The strange case of Guild Wars 2's reward system

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

Is it cold out there in space, Bowie?
Every now and then I'll hear someone say that Guild Wars 2 has no rewards. They'll say it's extraordinarily grindy, that there's nothing to work toward, and that ArenaNet is intentionally making things harder than they should be so that we'll all give up and buy gems. This is confusing and frustrating to me for two reasons: The first is that all of those things are demonstrably untrue. The second is that I can nevertheless see where those people are coming from to some extent, and it's been difficult to put my finger on why.

GW2 showers players with loot and rewards. In an hour's normal play, I can fill my bags with items and come out of it with a tidy sum of cash; nearly everything in the game is designed to reward players for doing stuff, no matter what that stuff is. Some of it, like Edge of the Mists, is almost ludicrously generous. Even with the changes to the way Queen's Pavilion fights work this time around, it's possible to grab huge numbers of Champion loot bags if you land on an organized megaserver. So why does GW2 feel so stingy?

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Perfect Ten: The MMOs that influenced me greatly

World of Warcraft, Anarchy Online, City of Heroes, Dungeons and Dragons Online, Fallen Earth, Guild Wars, Warhammer Online, Opinion, Guild Wars 2, The Secret World, Star Wars: The Old Republic, Perfect Ten, Miscellaneous

DDO
Every one of us has an "MMO resume": a list of titles that we've played, whether briefly or extensively. Some of those are just games, casual flings that meant nothing. But others can take a more meaningful role in our lives, influencing how we experience and view MMOs.

I would scarcely say that my resume is one of the most robust you'll ever see; I'm sure plenty of you have played more than I. However, I like to think that I've had a journey over the course of a decade or so that's shaped who I am as a gamer. Since it's my birthday today, I'm going to share 10 of those influential MMOs with you and what they've done for me. You're going to get me cake.

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Guild Wars 2 starts Season 2 of the Living World on July 1st

Fantasy, Lore, Previews, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Buy-to-Play

There will be walls, there will be doors, you can only imagine.
It's happening, all right. Season 2 is coming to Guild Wars 2 starting July 1st, meaning that we've got a month of what will no doubt be teasers, hints, and taunts. That image above is a teaser. If you stare deeply enough, you may be able to uncover its mysteries. For within its depths lie... well... who knows?

No, seriously, we don't know either. It could be anything. Speculation has already begun, but that first image is all we have to go on for certain right now, and that means... what? Take a gander at a larger version of the image just past the break and start your speculation engines. Or just wait a month if that's your speed.

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A video preview of Guild Wars 2's brand-new character faces

Fantasy, Video, Business Models, Patches, Previews, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Races, Buy-to-Play

GW2
As part of yesterday's Festival of the Four Winds patch, ArenaNet updated Guild Wars 2 with a slew of new face options, three new faces for each race and gender. The faces are available in the Total Makeover Kit purchaseable in the cash shop. Friend of Massively Richie "Bogotter" Procopio has uploaded a video to his YouTube channel previewing all of the new faces so you can see whether it's worth shelling out for the freckles and rhinoplasty of your dreams. Enjoy it below!

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Jukebox Heroes: Guild Wars 2's living story soundtrack

Fantasy, Guild Wars 2, Jukebox Heroes, Music, Buy-to-Play

I'm going to make a bold statement here that might net me some haters, but here goes: I think that Guild Wars 2 is better off now that it's cast off Jeremy Soule and moved on to in-house composers. Soule's soundtrack was great in parts, but he's not the be-all, end-all of good video game music. And his company's unexplained decision to yank the soundtrack from its store (and not even offer a digital version) irks me beyond the telling of it. Good luck finding it!

So today I'm going to give tribute to the two men who have been forging ahead -- spectacularly, I might add -- with scoring Guild Wars 2's ongoing living story updates. Maclaine Diemer and Leif Chappelle have been whipping up a wide variety of tunes to go with the various story elements and events. To ArenaNet's credit, the studio has been posting these downloadable tracks for free on SoundCloud.

And while rumor has it that Diemer and Chappelle are already composing music for season two, I thought it'd be worthwhile to go back and share some of my favorites from their season one portfolio. I won't be dipping into Super Adventure Box, however, as we did that last year.

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Flameseeker Chronicles: Why we don't have Cantha in Guild Wars 2

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

These lanterns are so nostalgic.
How about those predictions, huh? Last week I guessed that Guild Wars 2 would get a visit from the Zephyr Sanctum soon, and boom: Festival of the Four Winds exploding all over the place. Having used up my allotment of precognitive accuracy for the year, I plan to gorge myself on delicious sky candy and spend the next week or so literally bouncing off the walls. Before the festivities start, though, we've got just enough time to visit a topic near to my heart: Cantha.

ArenaNet receives very frequent requests to revive the setting of Guild Wars: Factions in GW2, and between GW2's Chinese release, the level of mystery surrounding season two of the living world, and the return of the Zephyrites, it's natural that people would start talking about Cantha again. It might seem baffling that ArenaNet hasn't rushed to steer the living world story in such an obviously popular direction, but unfortunately it's not as simple as loading us on the next airship and flying away to Seitung Harbor -- at least not yet.

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Guild Wars 2's Festival of the Four Winds launches today

Fantasy, Galleries, Screenshots, Events (In-Game), Game Mechanics, Interviews, Launches, Lore, Patches, Previews, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Buy-to-Play

Gw2
As promised, today ArenaNet will update Guild Wars 2's western servers with the Festival of the Four Winds, a Chinese-themed patch that will return the Zephyrite festival to the game and mark the game's launch in China. Says the studio,
The Zephyrites have returned to Labyrinthine Cliffs in their large-sailed flying ships to support Lion's Arch in its time of need. Although Lion's Arch suffered a devastating blow as a result of Scarlet's nefarious plans, Captain Ellen Kiel of the Captain's Council is grateful to see the Zephyrites return with their generous offer of materials and moral support. And to help reinvigorate trade and provide some joy to its citizens, the Zephyrite Master of Peace and Queen Jennah of Kryta are hosting a festival to honor Lion's Arch. Visit Labyrinthine Cliffs and experience the rush of Aspect movement skills, take part in the Sanctum Sprint, or enjoy one of the brand-new events; then take a hot-air balloon to Divinity's Reach and enjoy the reopened Crown Pavilion, including a new version of the Queen's Gauntlet, the Boss Blitz. Join Braham, Rox, Marjory, Kasmeer, Taimi, and Scruffy as they enjoy the festivities and usher in the return of Lion's Arch services!
We spoke to ArenaNet Game Design Lead Mike Zadorojny and Associate Game Director Steven Waller about the update and how players will gradually aid in the rebuilding of the Tyrian capital.

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