Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns™, introduces the ultimate challenge: our first raid, which is made up of three distinct raid wings. Raids are 10-player, instanced, elite dungeon content that's a challenge unlike anything we've previously released in Guild Wars 2. These raids are meant to put you and your teammates to the test and challenge you to grow your skills as Guild Wars 2 players. Raids are our answer to what skilled PvE players have to look forward to at endgame—the ultimate test to overcome and defeat.
Raids are 10 player squad-based PvE instances focusing on challenging combat and mechanics, designed for level 80 characters. Each raid encounter typically utilises multiple phases with several unique mechanics, which test the squad's coordination, damage output and positioning, as well as the player's builds. Many encounters include an enrage timer: if the encounter isn't finished by the time it runs out, the incoming damage will greatly increase. Certain masteries may also be required for some encounters to complete. Downed allies can be revived or rally, but defeated allies cannot be revived during the encounters and Revive Orbs are disabled, along with other similar consumables such as boosters.
Raids can be split into multiple wings, each in a separate instance and with different encounters. While corresponding wings tell a progressing story in a specific order, each wing can be entered and completed independently and in any order. Raid areas appear on the world map and have entrances from the neighboring zones. The Lion's Arch Aerodrome functions as a lobby for organizing a raid squad and includes portals to all raid wings.
Special rewards for finishing each encounter are limited to once per week, with a weekly reset at Monday 07:30. Progress within a raid wing is saved for players even after leaving the instance, and it's reset weekly along with the rewards. Restarting the raid instance later will remember the progress made by the instance opener, allowing you to continue with the same raid wing across multiple sessions in a week. There are no waypoints inside raids, but instead they use a checkpoint system which automatically revives the entire squad and resets skill recharges when everyone is defeated. The /resign command or one of its alternatives can be used to restart an encounter faster.
List of raids
- 1 Major encounters award weekly reward chests upon completion.
- Call of the Mists (active in the most recent raid wing) — Gold and experience rewards from boss encounters is doubled.
- Compendium of Knowledge to progress mastery tracks
- Magnetite Shards or Gaeting Crystals. Heart of Thorns raids award Magnetite Shards, while Path of Fire raids award Gaeting Crystals. These can be used to purchase rewards from Scholar Glenna
- No Reward - If the Magnetite Shard cap (150), or the Gaeting Crystal cap (50) has been reached that week, killing a boss will award this instead of a currency bonus
- Legendary Insights for crafting legendary armor
- Unique rewards to each boss chest:
- Additional raids are planned to be included with new releases.
- At this time players cannot use transformation tonics or potions.
- It is possible to enter the raid with a player who has already cleared the wing to do certain achievements that do not involve combat, such as Loot Finder, Piecing It Together or My Hero!.
- A squad can concede defeat faster by using the /resign, /surrender, /concede, /forfeit, /gg, /qq, or /ff commands.
- In the LFG tool, players often advertise in shorthand what other players they seek. Common codes include:
- "x li": Players with at least that many Legendary Insights, to indicate raiding experience. Players can "show" the number of Legendary Insights they have to others in chat by ctrl or shift-clicking on them in the inventory, but this can be faked by manually inputting the appropriate chat link format codes.
- "kp": Players with "kill proof"--one of the items that can only be looted by someone who has defeated a boss, to prove they've beaten it at least once before. This can include the decoration token received from that boss, or any of the gear items that can drop from that boss's chest (or unlocked as purchases from Scholar Glenna only after defeating it). Players posting this requirement will usually also accept Perfected Envoy armor or the precursor sets, since the collections required to get them include items that drop from each raid boss.