Guild Wars 2 Preview
- By: CM Boots-Faubert
- Posted 30th May 2011
Our first look at Guild Wars 2 was provided during the panel at PAX East where -- picture this in your mind -- there was a table set up before a honking huge display screen and, when the lights dimmed to near-dark, a presentation was put on that showed us, among other things, panoramic vistas, heart-stopping structures, and images of characters. Then the voice-over began to tell us about big things in store, and the motivation behind the choices that were made in the creation of the game.
The presentation opened with the promise: "If you love MMO's you'll want to check out Guild Wars 2 -- and if you hate MMO's you'll really want to check out Guild Wars 2!"
Expecting that to be explained, we were slightly disappointed when instead they launched into a review of the features -- combat, community events, and of course the fact that it is still free-to-play, but not why haters will become lovers... And then it clicked.
The design of the game is player-centric -- the events that take place in the game are reactionary... The intention is to make it more real to the player; when they are prompted that a group of mobs are attacking a town the attack is actually happening and, as they explained, it will not be like all of the other MMO's where you show up at the village and are told to kill 10 mobs standing in the field.
You save the village, the villagers will always remember that! You do things in the game, those things do not reset 10 minutes later. OK we are starting to get it...
Following those interesting promises was a series of CS's that showed the wide variety of the environments in the game -- and again it was impressive. When we say that, you need to picture in your mind what we were seeing when we looked around the room -- gamers with open jaws and wide-eyes, breathing shallow, their attention locked on the screen. Yeah, it was that sort of presentation.
You have to understand that the CS's we were seeing were very well chosen -- there was no doubt that we all wanted to BE that mage, running through that field, casting flames in every direction!
Then it went dark and forbidding, and we got to see some of the bad-ass mobs we would be facing when the game comes out, and hey, it looked pretty darn cool -- and we all understood David Lightman's motivation in ordering his computer to dial all of those numbers in Sunnyvale, just because he wanted to play those games.
When the video ended the room erupted into cheers and applause -- of course those of us from the press just sat politely and patiently waiting, because there is no cheering in the press box -- but inside? Where you couldn't see? Yeah, we were cheering too.
Before the panel would accept any questions, they insisted upon answering three that they always get, every time, just to save time.
Is Guild Wars 2 a fully persistent game-world? Yes.
Is there jumping in Guild Wars 2? Yes!
Is there a monthly fee for Guild Wars 2? Absolutely not. You buy the game once, you can play it forever.