Link Roundups

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Link Roundup: GW2 Combat and Elementalist[edit]


It’s been a momentous, busy week here at ArenaNet.

This week we celebrated the fifth anniversary of Guild Wars, a game we love as much as you guys do. We introduced Guild Wars 2’s Elementalist, accompanied by some incredibly cool spell videos— I’ve been yelling “Here come the flames!” all week. Lead Designer Eric Flannum released highly-anticipated info about Guild Wars 2 combat in a two-part article that discusses skills as well as weapons, professions, and races that has everyone talking. We also launched our brand new studio blog (which you are reading right now!) with a bold vision statement about the future of the MMO from our president Mike O’Brien.

In case you missed anything, here’s a round-up of the week’s awesomeness:

  • talked with a bunch of ArenaNet developers like Isaiah Cartwright and Eric Flannum about Guild Wars 2’s combat system, technology, social events, and more.
  • The German site Onlinewelten talked with Eric Flannum about tactical movement and environmental weaponry as well as races and professions. You can read the two-part interview in English or, if you prefer, German.
  • For our French-speaking players, Eric also spoke with the French website Jeuxvideo about dynamic events, World vs World, and the skill system. The interview is in French, which makes it sound so much cooler.

We want to thank everybody for your interest and enthusiasm. It means a lot to us to see players and fans spreading the word on Twitter, Digg, Facebook, etc. As a way of saying thanks, here’s a brand-new GW2 wallpaper from Kekai Kotaki – because every desktop needs a norn elementalist!

In the weeks ahead, we’ll be releasing more information and unveiling those shadowy figures on Guild Wars The Elementalist was just the tip of the proverbial MMO iceberg!

Link Roundup: Dynamic Events[edit]


This week Lead Content Designer Colin Johanson’s overview of Guild Wars 2’s dynamic event system got the gaming community buzzing. Everyone’s been talking about how Guild Wars 2 will challenge the traditional quest model found in most MMOs – here’s a collection of conversations from gamers around the world:

  • Massively welcomes the GW2 event system as an organic part of a beautiful, immersive game world in this article.
  • Ten Ton Hammer is psyched that the dynamic event system offers a fresh way of delivering content to players.
  • Eurogamer sat down with Colin Johanson for a lengthy interview about the GW2 event system and personal storylines.
  • In this post, IncGamers links to Colin’s event system article about this “exciting new approach to gaming.”

We’re really excited that folks are responding so positively to the dynamic event system, and we’re looking forward to talking about more Guild Wars 2 goodness very soon. Have a great weekend, everybody!

Link Roundup: GW2 Events and More[edit]


The positive buzz about Guild Wars 2 continues, as you’ll see in this week’s round-up of links. Here’s what sites ranging from G4 to Massively had to say about our dynamic event system, lore and races, and Tyrian high fashion!

  • Ten Ton Hammer used words like “excellent” and “incredibly interesting” to describe this week’s Guild Wars 2 reveals in their daily MMO newsletter, Loading…
  • Ravious over at Kill Ten Rats analyzes this week’s dynamic events news and talks to Eric Flannum about the big changes in gameplay functionality in store for players.
  • Casey Schreiner from G4’s MMO Report takes a look at the “lofty goals” of Guild Wars 2’s event system and seems pretty confident that we’ll be able to deliver. Count on it, Casey!

And that wraps up another awesome week! Make sure to check back with us next week when we explain what we mean when we say Guild Wars 2 is YOUR story! Stay tuned!

Link Roundup: Personal Storylines and More![edit]


This week Lore and Continuity Designer Ree Soesbee explained the Guild Wars 2 personal storyline system in detail, and even threw in some juicy lore details! Let’s take a quick tour around the Internet and see what everybody had to say about the customizable personal storyline, the War in Kryta, combat mechanics, and much more!

  • Ree Soesbee touched base with the PC Gamer Blog for a talk about the personal quest chain, home instancing, character biographies, and a lot more. Plus: new screenshots, including a pretty shot of a couple of GW2 deer! We like deer.
  • IGN liked the concept of dynamic events, and adding a personalized storyline into the mix is just fine with them. “Every time we hear something new about Guild Wars 2 we get more and more excited.”
  • Massively broke down Ree’s personal story article, and was intrigued by the possibilities inherent in a customizable MMO that mixes dynamic events with personal storylines.
  • The ZAM staff continues its Guild Wars 2 coverage with a discussion of the mechanics behind the combat system they saw in action during a recent trip to ArenaNet!
  • Rubi over at Massively took a look at the new War in Kryta bounties, the inimitable Courier Falken (“Falken… PUNCH!”), and new loot! It pays to be a rebel.
  • Ten Ton Hammer’s “Anatomy of a Skill Bar” is just what it sounds like: a detailed analysis of how the skill bar has been redesigned for Guild Wars 2.
  • Kotaku digs the idea of character creation that goes way beyond just selecting race and class, judging by this post.
  • Man, they’ve been busy over at Massively this week! Somehow they found time to interview designers Eric Flannum, John Hargrove, and Ree Soesbee about everything from crafting to instanced dungeons.
  • Speak German? Awesome, then you will understand every word of Ree Soesbee’s interview with about Guild Wars 2’s personal story system.
  • Authors Jeff Grubb and Matt Forbeck talked with Booklife about collaborating on Ghosts of Ascalon, the upcoming Guild Wars novel.
  • The French sites Jeux Video and Jeux Video PC like what they’ve heard about the customizable personal storyline so far!

And that’s a wrap. We’re going to enjoy the long Memorial Day holiday, so we’ll see you on Tuesday! Have a great weekend, everyone.

Link Roundup: Warrior, Traits, and More![edit]


The warrior burst onto the scene this week and made a big impact with the gaming community. We got all nitty-gritty and talked about traits in Guild Wars 2, too. Check out this week’s round-up of GW2 links!

  • Ten Ton Hammer offers a detailed analysis of recent GW2 gameplay reveals, and brings you up to speed on the latest Guild Wars and Guild Wars 2 news with their weekly newsletter.
  • Check out Rubi Bayer’s thoughtful overview of the recent warrior and traits articles right here at Massively. Be sure to check out Massively’s exclusive interview with GW2 Lead Designer Eric Flannum, too!
  • nicely explains the recent GW2 news about the warrior here and traits here. We couldn’t have said it better ourselves!
  • Kotaku has lots of cool screenshots and nice things to say about the warrior, which they describe as “a master of weapons powered by adrenalin and suited for any situation, thanks to the game’s newly-revealed traits system.” That sounds about right. Check out the article here!
  • Gamespot has a load of warrior screencaps, including a sweet shot of that dual-wielding charr warrior from the skill videos. Behold the awesomeness right here.
  • For your viewing pleasure, IGN has put all the new warrior skill videos into a compilation video packed with combat goodness. “Time to bust some heads!”
  • PC Gamer is excited about the warrior, and who can blame them? They recently sat down with Guild Wars 2 developers to learn more about our plans for the game – look for the interview soon!
  • MMOZine breaks down the warrior class right here.
  • Massively’s Flameseeker Chronicles takes a look at the latest War in Kryta update and more, right here!
  • The warrior and traits were big news in Europe as well. The German sites Onlinewelten, Gamestar, and Buffed all have detailed coverage of the latest Guild Wars 2 reveals. For French-speaking players, Jeux Video and Mondes Persistants take a look at the warrior and traits. Be sure to check out Eric Flannum’s exclusive interview with Jeux Online! Ne manquéz pas!

That puts a cap on this link roundup. Keep singing the praises of your favorite professions and new features, but make sure to save your voice to cheer on your favorite World Cup competitors starting this weekend!

Link Roundup: Get Your Mini-Game On![edit]


This week we unloaded a bunch of information about activities, feats, and other non-combat gameplay in Guild Wars 2. Kicking things off with an exclusive interview with IGN, we followed up with designer John Stumme’s deeper look at activities and mini-games here on the blog.

Were people excited about the idea of bar brawls and other cool mini-games? Yes, they were! Let’s survey the widespread reaction to these newly revealed features in this week’s link round up!

  • ArenaNet game designers talked to IGN about what to expect from fun in-game recreational activities in Guild Wars 2, as well as achievements, feats, and the personality system. Check out IGN’s article and their exclusive gallery of new screenshots!
  • Kotaku was intrigued by John Stumme’s blog post about Guild Wars 2 activities. “It seems like ArenaNet’s definition of the term [mini-game] is a bit grander than most game developers.”
  • Both Ten Ton Hammer and appreciated Guild Wars 2’s attempt to defy MMO standards and have thoughtful commentaries about the newly uncovered features.
  • The idea of “games within the game” – particularly the bar brawl – appealed to Big Download and Massive Online Gamer.
  • IncGamers, GamePro, Virgin Media, Cinema Blend, Crazy Gamer News, Shacknews, and Epic BattleAxe liked the festive carnival vibe of the new Guild Wars 2 screenshots.
  • The “lighter aspect of gameplay” represented by GW2 activities caught Massively’s attention, while GameDrone took a detailed look at the new features.

And that’s a wrap! What exciting nugget of Guild Wars 2 goodness will we reveal next week? Stay tuned and you’ll find out! Have a good weekend everyone!

Link Roundup: Healing and Death[edit]


Death, where is thy sting?

This week we shook things in the MMO world up a bit with designer Jon Peters’ article about how we’re approaching healing and death in Guild Wars 2. The announcement of “downed” abilities, reduced death penalties, and the lack of a dedicated healer class got people talking. Let’s take a look at what people are saying in this week’s link round-up!

  • Game Informer is intrigued by the possibilities implied by Jon’s article, including the redefinition of what it means to play a support role in the absence of a healing class.
  • Kotaku got the lowdown from Eric, Jon, and designer Isaiah Cartwright in this article which takes a look at how our new healing and death system puts the fun back into combat!
  • PC Gamer talked to Eric Flannum and Jon Peters about how Guild Wars 2 dismantles the holy trinity of tank/damage/healer in this in-depth article full of juicy details.
  • Rubi over at Massively takes a detailed look at how fluid damage, support, and control “roles” will play out in Guild Wars 2, while thinks Jon Peters’ article is “a surefire hit,” and
  • Shack News approves of our “dramatic execution” of death and healing in combat.
  • Ten Ton Hammer asks “is Guild Wars 2 the soothing balm for the sting of MMOg deaths?”
  • Jon’s article was equally well received by players and press in the EU. Eurogamer appreciates how this “radical revision of standard combat and grouping mechanics” will make it easier to pull groups together.
  • The French language sites Gamekult and Jeuxvideo both were excited about this week’s news (or so I am told – no parlez Francais) and the German sites Gamona and Buffed were equally psyched, but in an entirely different language. The Swedish gaming site examined how the downed game mechanic makes PvP more exciting, and the Italian site was impressed with our approach to healing and death as well.
  • Tycho over at Penny Arcade gets the last word this week, with this quote from his blog post this week : “I’ve read and re-read every article that breaks the surface of the refurbished Guild Wars 2 presence. I don’t care if they ever launch the game at this point. It’s already contributed to the health of the genre simply by being a judging, omnipresent force.”

We’re definitely going to launch the game, but we appreciate the kind words, regardless!

Thus ends another exciting week here at ArenaNet! We’re excited to see that our new take on healing and death is being so well-received by gamers that are looking for something new. Speaking of new, we’ve got more cool stuff to announce next week – we’ll see you then!

Link Roundup: Rangers, Pets, and Ghosts[edit]


Sit. Stay. Good links!

Our swiftest foragers went forth this week and fetched back the finest morsels of coverage for our announcement of the ranger profession and the release of more information about Ghosts of Ascalon. So, strap yourselves in for this week’s link roundup as we take a look at the reaction to furry friends and phantoms.

  • PC Gamer chatted once again with Eric Flannum. Among other things, they get to the core of what it means to be a ranger wielding a sword.
  • IGN and Massively both dug their teeth into the idea of having a pet shark. These articles are good reading while you’re out shopping for a bigger boat. Massively also made room for a brief Q&A in which they ask a variety of ranger and pet-related questions.
  • We got the attention of, whose excitement over being a master-of-all-trades and pet charmer may be pushing their imagination a little too far. I’m afraid we can’t confirm at this time that asuran rangers will be able to mount lasers on the heads of their pet sharks (though we can confirm it’s an exciting idea).
  • An editorial on Ten Ton Hammer calls particular attention to the pet system, pointing to evolution as an exciting improvement in Guild Wars 2.
  • Around the world, sites spoke excitedly about the ranger and her skills; from in Italy, to Gamestar in Germany, to Game Reactor in the EU, they’re calling the ranger “a tree-hugging survival specialist, combining traps, pets and ranged weapons to wreak havoc from afar.
  • Gamekult also posted an interview with Eric Flannum that’s an interesting read if you speak French.
  • In the realm of the printed word, we offered a free sample of the first Guild Wars novel, Ghosts of Ascalon, and asked Jeff Grubb to talk about the differences between designing the Guild Wars universe and writing a book set in it. You can never say enough though, and Ten Ton Hammer was there to pry more details out of Jeff about charr legions and the future of Dougal Keane.
  • Massively not only turned Rubi loose on the author for an interview, but let Shawn Schuster, regular “Ask Massively” columnist, dive into an advance copy of the book. He politely avoids spoilers while offering up a few choice moments: “I found myself chuckling a bit when the main character was forced to drop a sack of treasure because he didn’t have room in his pack. We’ve all been there.”

And we’ll all be back here next week for further exciting reveals and roundups. Stay tuned!

Link Roundup: Gamescom Demo and Necromancer[edit]


It’s been a crazy, exciting couple of weeks here at ArenaNet. Last week we premiered the first playable demo of Guild Wars 2 at gamescom in Cologne, Germany, and this week we officially announced the necromancer (which showed up in the gamescom demo). As we prepare for PAX next week, let’s take a quick look around the web at some of the recent conversations and reactions about Guild Wars 2.

There’s a lot to cover, so let’s get started!

  • The GW2 gamescom demo was featured heavily in the European gaming press. Jeux Video set the stage with a gamescom preview article outlining the key gameplay features and what to expect from the demo. The German site Gamestar analyzed the game and came away impressed, while Onlinewelten discussed GW2 with ArenaNet Senior VP Randy Price in an English-language video interview. IGN UK ’s Nick Kolan gave readers an overview of his hands-on experience playing as both a charr and human. “… wherever I seemed to go, there was something to do,” he said.
  • The French site Univers Virtuels interviewed Lead Content Designer Colin Johanson and Continuity and Lore Designer Jeff Grubb about the Ghosts of Ascalon, “legacy sites” from Guild Wars that appear in Guild Wars 2, and more in this English-language video. Univers Virtuels also released a comprehensive French guide to the GW2 gamescom demo.
  • On this side of the water, the gaming press was equally enthusiastic. Gamespot was intrigued: “…we’ll be following [Guild Wars 2’s] lofty goals with interest.” Gamespot also conducted an informative video interview with Lead Designer Eric Flannum.
  • PC Gamer was impressed with what they saw in Cologne. “…the game looks gorgeous, but beyond the pretty pixels it fundamentally understands that there can be more to the genre than grinding, leveling and alts.” Game Informer was just as impressed when they took a look at the game. “Guild Wars 2 is looking nothing short of incredible, and I can’t wait until the release.”
  • Kotaku chronicled their forty-five minute demo session and concluded, “This is the sort of game I could get lost in. I want more.” Massively combed through all the cool bits of info collected from gamescom over the week by players, while Ten Ton Hammer offered a broad overview of the GW2 demo.
  • We snuck the necromancer in as one of the playable classes in the Guild Wars 2 demo, and in the following week we formally introduced this sinister master of dark arts to the world. Ten Ton Hammer didn’t wait until the official reveal to analyze the necromancer in action, and declared that “every game needs a necro.” Massively approves of the updated necromancer capabilities, which makes the class “bigger, badder, and deadlier than her Guild Wars counterpart.”
  • Guild Wars 2 Guru did a fantastic job compiling all the news and reveals from Cologne in their epic “This. Is. GAMESCOM!” thread. Speaking of GW2 Guru, Developers Isaiah Cartwright, Leah Rivera, and Devon Carver answered a bunch of player questions about the game in this info-packed thread.
  • Did you catch that incredible Rytlock Brimstone charr costume from Nimba Creations? Check out some behind-the-scenes shots of the costume and learn how they made it in this post by a Nimba effects master!
  • In other news, we’re proud to announce that ArenaNet’s community team has been nominated for Best Online Community Relations for the Game Developers Choice Online Awards, which will be held at GDC Online in Austin, Texas on October 7. Congratulations to Regina, Martin, Stéphane, and Emily for the nomination!

We’ve had a week to catch our breaths – now it’s time for PAX! We’re bringing the Guild Wars 2 demo to our backyard in Seattle from September 3-5 – we hope to see you there!

PAX 2010 Link Roundup[edit]


We had a fantastic time at PAX this year showcasing Guild Wars 2 and meeting our fellow gamers. This year was easily the biggest PAX ever, with a record attendance of 67,600 fans – many of whom visited our booth to play the GW2 demo! It seemed like everywhere you went at PAX, somebody was wearing a GW2 bandana or T-shirt.

Here’s a sampling of what people were saying about the Guild Wars 2 experience at PAX!

GamePro took a spin around Tyria at PAX and described the game as “staggeringly beautiful” in this thorough breakdown of the hands-on demo. They said, “I have high hopes for Guild Wars 2 as the kind of MMO that really does move the genre forward.”

  • Rubi Bayer at Massively offers a detailed overview of the hands-on demo – we think she liked it!
  • Massively reports on our Dynamic Events panel, which was more of an audience-participation brainstorming workshop, really. G4TV’s blog The Feed was there as well; they said, “The company used their panel at PAX this year to invite the Guild Wars faithful behind-the-scenes […] letting them create an event chain for the upcoming game.”
  • And as always, the good people at Guild Wars 2 Guru have assembled an exhaustive list of GW2 PAX links in their “Ultimate PAX Thread,” which has a ton of PAX videos. You’ll feel like you were there!
  • Destructoid played the demo and liked it so much they declared Guild Wars 2 one of their PAX Best of Show winners! They declare in their in-depth look at the demo, “Guild Wars 2 is shaping up to be one of the most interesting MMOs we’ve seen in a long, long time.”
  • Bill Murphy from made some interesting observations about how Guild Wars 2 is bringing role-playing back to MMORPGs in this article, where he says, “[…]ArenaNet is anxious to challenge the notion that the player-character needs to be a static polygon model without emotions or choice.”
  • called the ArenaNet presence at PAX “an impressive showing” in their review of the demo. Ten Ton Hammer had so much to say about their experience at PAX playing the Guild Wars 2 demo that they had to break it into two parts. Read part one here and part two right here! Sardu from Ten Ton Hammer also grabbed Game Designer Izzy Cartwright for a chat about combat in GW2.

That’s just scratching the surface of the comments and discussions online. Needless to say, we had a great time at PAX and are happy that so many people got to play and enjoy Guild Wars 2. Remember to check out our PAX 2010 Flickr gallery to see pictures we took at the show.

Coming up, we’ll take a closer look at the PAX Dynamic Events panel, and we’ll talk more about the Guild Wars 2 Extended Experience, which takes GW2 beyond your PC. Have a great weekend!

Link Roundup: Guild Wars 2 Extended Experience[edit]


This week Tech Director Rick Ellis laid out our plan for the Guild Wars 2 Extended Experience, a smartphone and web application that will let you stay connected and interactive with Guild Wars 2 no matter where you are. Rick’s blog post got a lot of people talking, so we took a spin around the web to see what people were saying.

  • PC Gamer notes how the Guild Wars 2 Extended Experience distinguishes itself from other MMO apps in this article, saying, “…what sets this technology apart is the real time connection to the game world itself, and the fact that information can be shared both ways.”
  • IGN’s Nick Kolan wonders if the Extended Experience is too much of a good thing right here, but ultimately concludes, “I’m actually very excited to try this out, and to see how mobile platforms can be used as a tool to enhance the social-side of the MMO experience.”
  • In Massively’s overview of the Extended Experience, Rubi Bayer is impressed by the “ combination of functionality and the social appeal […] so far they feel like they’ve hit upon a good balance.”

That’s just a sample of some of the conversations people are having about the Extended Experience this week. We’ll be talking more about the features and functionality of this forward-thinking application in the coming months, so stay tuned!

Link Roundup: Hall of Monuments[edit]


Last week we revealed how all the trophies and achievements you earn in the Hall of Monuments in Guild Wars: Eye of the North are worth points that you can use to unlock cool stuff for your Guild Wars 2 characters. We also rolled out the Hall of Monuments Reward Calculator, a handy tool that helps you figure out what rewards you can access in Guild Wars 2. In this week’s Link Roundup, we’re sampling some of the reactions and conversations about this big news, and our recent trip to New York Comic Con, where we met lots of our fellow gamers at the NCsoft East Coast Meet & Greet. Read on!

  • We talked a lot about the exciting news this week. OnRPG chatted with Lead Designer Eric Flannum for an in-depth interview about the new Hall of Monuments feature. Rock, Paper Shotgun grabbed Game Designer John Hargrove, our Items and Rewards Guru, for an interesting conversation about how the Hall of Monuments interacts with Guild Wars 2. Eric and John also talked with Kotaku’s Mike Fahey about the Reward Calculator and the wonders it holds.
  • In print news, Guild Wars 2 is on the cover of this month’s PCGZine! This huge UK game magazine takes a look at the upcoming in a massive article loaded with screenshots. Download the magazine right here. On this side of the Atlantic, don’t forget to pick up PC Gamer’s cover story on Guild Wars 2, which is packed with art, screenshots, and insider tidbits by the “reclusive masterminds at ArenaNet.” This issue, which is out on shelves right now, also unearths a major new element of Guild Wars 2—dungeons!
  • Massively has done a true community service by publishing The Road to 50, a series of articles that offers a guide to players who want to accumulate trophies and achievements in the Hall of Monuments with an eye towards Guild Wars 2. Each article focuses on a different monument (like the Monuments to Fellowship, Honor, etc.) and is packed with helpful tips!
  • Ten Ton Hammer caught up with Eric Flannum at New York Comic Con to discuss the design philosophy of Guild Wars 2 in this lengthy, in-depth interview. They also offered a great beginner’s guide to the Hall of Monuments that tells you pretty much everything you need to know to get started forging your legacy for Guild Wars 2.
  • Gamers in Europe were equally excited about the Hall of Monuments news, judging from the media coverage and forum conversations. The Danish website Game Reactor analyzed the Rewards Calculator while the premier French gaming site JeuxOnline posted a detailed interview with Eric Flannum and the German site Buffed also talked with Eric about what Guild Wars players can expect from the Hall of Monuments. Who knew Eric spoke so many languages?
  • The Hall of Monuments news was summed up nicely on G4’s MMO Report this week, which described the reward system as “rollover minutes” for the loyal Guild Wars player.
  • The Hall of Monuments wasn’t the only big news last week—we sent a crack team of ArenaNet staffers to the New York Comic Con, where we hosted a standing-room only presentation, Guild Wars 2: Building a Better MMO, a look behind the scenes of our game design process. NCsoft hosted an East Coast Meet & Greet, where we got a chance to meet our fellow gamers and show off the Guild Wars 2 demo for the first time on the East Coast. We had a blast!

That’s all for this week, folks. Have a great weekend, and we’ll see you in-game!

Link Round Up: Hearts of the North[edit]


Last week we introduced Hearts of the North, the next phase in the ongoing Guild Wars Beyond series. In this all-new content you’ll reunite the legendary heroes Gwen and Keiran Thackeray and you can look fabulous doing it in one of our elegant new wedding costumes! For this week’s Link Roundup, we’ve collected a lot of the recent conversations and coverage about Hearts of the North, so let’s get to it!

  • Let’s start things off with a developer update from Guild Wars Lead Designer John Stumme, in which he discusses Guild Wars Beyond and offers some insight into the design of the new Hearts of the North content.
  • Game websites around the world were talking about Hearts of the North. Everyone from Ten Ton Hammer to Game Daily covered the new content, including, MMOCraze, and the Belgian site 9Lives.
  • John had a lot to say about the wedding content last week. He supplied the folks at the Nordic gaming site Game Reactor with some helpful background about Gwen and Keiran as well as hints at things to come in Cantha: Winds of Change, the next installment in the Guild Wars Beyond series.
  • Massively sat down with John Stumme to talk about Hearts of the North in a lengthy interview, and also offered up a review/overview of the new content and wedding costumes.
  • The PC Gamer website also chatted with John Stumme about Hearts of the North, and even polled the Guild Wars Live Team as to which side of the aisle they’ll be sitting on during the wedding: Gwen’s side or Keiran’s side?
  • The British gaming site IncGamers offered some useful Hearts of the North tips and posted an interview with John Stumme where he dropped this hint: “After all of the wedding content is completed, a new Hero will have joined the player’s party…”

Curse spoke with John Stumme about Guild Wars Beyond in an interview where he offered some insight into the development process and pretty much kills any hope for Guild Wars: The Musical. Darn! Thanksgiving is almost here in the States, so the entire studio is going to take a few days off to stuff ourselves with turkey, watch some American football, and (of course) do some gaming. Have a great weekend everybody!

Link Round-Up: Year End Awards Edition[edit]


It’s that time of year again: when fans reflect on the past year of gaming and look forward to the year ahead. That’s right: time for end of year awards! Let’s look at how Guild Wars 2 did.

  • PC Gamer’s Games of 2012 series shines a spotlight on Guild Wars 2. Chris Thursten explains why PC Gamer is so psyched about the game and chats with our Lead Game Developer Eric Flannum about the core Guild Wars 2 gameplay experience.
  • Over at Ten Ton Hammer, the fan votes have been tallied and Guild Wars 2 has emerged as the Reader’s Choice 2012’s Most Anticipated Game. “When it comes to ‘fanticipation’ our winner took the prize handily,” they say.
  • Guild Wars 2 was included in IGN’s list of the top 30 most anticipated games of 2012.
  • G4TV’s The Feed featured Guild Wars 2 as one of the Best MMO Games of 2012, saying, “Guild Wars 2 is taking absolutely everything to the next level, and it’s hard to not be impressed by its potential […]Guild Wars 2 features a stunning art style, beautiful music, and enough story and lore to get any MMO fan hyped for what it has to offer.”
  • Game Informer declares Guild Wars 2 as one of the most anticipated RPGs of 2012, citing “the fast-paced combat,” the “genuinely interesting story” and the lack of a subscription fee as some of the reasons they’re excited.
  • Massively awarded us the Most Anticipated for 2012 in their Best of 2011 Awards, citing but a few of the “hundreds of reasons we are pulling our hair out in anticipation for this game’s launch.”
  • We won’s annual awards in the Most Anticipated MMO category. “Though we don’t know when it’s coming out, we all know one thing: we want it now.”
  • MMOCrunch declared Guild Wars 2 as the Most Anticipated MMO in 2012. MMOCrunch have also peered ahead into the next twelve months and have made their bold 2012 predictions. “I predict players will flock to GW2 and before 2012 ends, Guild Wars 2 will have a larger active player base than [unnamed MMO].”
  • In Beckett Massive Online Gamer’s fan poll, Guild Wars 2 was the runner-up for the Most Anticipated MMO category.
  • picked Guild Wars 2 as #2 in their Top 10 Upcoming Games for 2011-2012, saying, “This amazingly artistic looking game with its awesome fighting animations is bringing you a whole new level of MMO with their revolutionary ideas and it doesn’t hurt to be free to play.
  • Pr0 Gaming listed Guild Wars 2 in their Top 10 Most Anticipated Games feature, while at Shack News staffer Xav chose Guild Wars 2 for his Most Anticipated of 2012, saying, “It’s gorgeous, massive, and takes cues from lessons learned around the industry.”
  • We also made gamerFeed’s Top 10 Most Anticipated Games of 2012 list. “Guild Wars 2 could very well be the MMO of 2012.”
  • The European game press love to make New Year’s lists as much as everybody else. In France, ranked our game among the top 10 most anticipated games of the new year. German website PC features Guild Wars 2 in their PC Releases of 2012 video (around the 4:17 mark), while German print magazine GameStar ranks it as the #4 most anticipated PC game of 2012.
  • OnRPG picked Guild Wars 2 as one of their most anticipated MMORPGs of 2012 in a cool video countdown of staff favorites.
  • Across the channel in the UK, the print magazine PC Gamer UK rated Guild Wars 2 as the #10 best game of 2012 and GameSpot UK calls it out as in their Editors’ Most Anticipated Games of 2012.
  • Finally, Britain’s own Rock Paper Shotgun found a place for Guild Wars 2 on their Exciting List of PC Games for 2012. They describe the game as “one of the most promising multiplayer titles we’ve ever seen, with a vast and beautiful MMO world, an astonishing array of characters and potential customisation, and more of an open-world focus…”

Thank you to our fans and everyone who voted for us! We appreciate your confidence and continued support, and we look forward to another great year!

Link Roundup – WvW and Beta[edit]

BY [Rubi Bayer|RUBI BAYER] FEBRUARY 24TH, 2012

It’s been an incredibly exciting week in the ArenaNet offices, and we were thrilled to see all of you enjoying the festivities along with us. We had a great response to last weekend’s beta event and this week’s beta signups, so it’s time to take a look at what everyone had to say!

PC Gamer fielded over a dozen reader questions after checking out the beta weekend, and shared some opinions about the Guild Wars 2 overflow servers. They definitely liked what they saw, saying, “GW2 is quickly earning its reputation as one of the most forward-thinking MMOs in development right now.”

Over at Massively, Shawn and Elisabeth had lots to say about the beta event. “Let me just say that this past weekend was not only one of the most exciting beta experiences I’ve ever had but that all of my fears about ArenaNet ruining the Guild Wars franchise were quickly squashed,” says Shawn Schuster. Massively took a close look at Guild Wars 2 crafting as well, creating a lengthy guide complete with video in a bonus edition of Flameseeker Chronicles. featured extensive coverage of the beta weekend, covering everything from the Ascalon Catacombs to PvP to the starting zones for each race. Garrett Fuller penned a thoughtful editorial in which he describes how “Guild Wars 2 really has taken innovation to the next step.” In the piece, Fuller says, “The game innovates while paying homage to some amazing game mechanics from the past. It takes great ideas and makes them better. It takes new ideas and is not afraid to serve them up to players.”

Kotaku’s Mike Fahey learned quite a bit over the weekend, calling GW2’s combat “ridiculously entertaining.” Fahey writes, “The skills and abilities are designed to work together well, launching the player into complicated spells or astounding feats of agility at the press of a button.”

Gamebreaker TV dove headfirst into Guild Wars 2 for the beta weekend, resurfacing with videos and opinions galore. Gamespot’s video clips from the beta weekend show off the human and norn starting areas, a fierce attack on a grawl cave, and some charr gameplay (and gunplay).

Over on the other side of the Atlantic, German sites GameStar and Buffed offered extensive gameplay videos and in-depth commentary about their beta experience. Meanwhile, Onlinewelten had a really cool article about character creation and personal story.

Finally, IGN came away from the beta weekend of the opinion that “it’s clear ArenaNet is building an incredible game. Beautiful, imaginative landscapes stretch in all directions, free of the off-putting copy/paste feel of some virtual worlds.” Check out IGNs review of the weekend event and PvP play.

We finished off the week at ArenaNet with a bang, opening Guild Wars 2 beta signups for 48 hours. Our incredible tech team worked overtime as hundreds of thousands of our fans raced to apply for a shot at beta. In the end we hit our milestone: ONE MILLION beta signups in just over 48 hours! (Yep, we stretched the deadline just a bit!)

Thanks to each and every one of you for an exciting week, and here’s to many more to come!

Link Roundup – Beta Weekend Event[edit]


Last week we held our first-ever Beta Weekend Event, a humble in-game get together attended by hundreds of thousands of our closest friends. This was an old-school beta; a lot of the lessons learned and data collected from the event are being applied toward improving the game as I write this. We want to extend a huge thanks to everyone who played. Your feedback, bugs, and participation are absolutely crucial to our goal of making Guild Wars 2 the best game possible at launch.

Let’s take a look at what they’re saying out in Internet land about the Guild Wars 2 Beta, shall we? The Escapist’s Justin Clouse presents a general overview of Guild Wars 2 based on his experience during the event. “The part I enjoyed most during my time with Guild Wars 2 was how it encourages players to actually work together,” Clouse writes.

Over at Forbes, Carol Pinchefsky admits that while she’s not an MMO player, she was won over during the Beta Weekend Event. “If GW2 is an example of how MMOs roll, then I might be rolling with GW2,” she says.

Kotaku’s Kate Cox was swept up by her character’s narrative journey, manned a trebuchet during PvP, and just enjoyed wandering around the living landscape of Tyria. She writes, “Ultimately, though, my main impression of the weekend is a buoyant sense of having been carried away with the joy of exploration.”

The staff at was busy during the Beta Weekend Event, and they have the coverage to prove it! They created a video preview of the Gem Store and Trading Post, offer an analysis of our crafting system, and take a hard look at whether Guild Wars 2 delivered on its promise of dynamic events and cooperative, social adventuring. “Everything was collaborative, not competitive,” MMORPG’s Michael Bitton says. “Don’t get me wrong, I love competition, but I’d rather leave that to PvP than adventuring.”

Massively was equally busy last weekend. They’re offering a video tour of the classic Guild Wars city of Lion’s Arch, which has had a serious makeover for Guild Wars 2. Elisabeth Cardy shares her impressions of Guild Wars 2 in this Flameseeker Chronicles post, while Justin Olivetti offers his ten favorite tombstone epitaphs from the graveyard outside Divinity’s Reach (one of my personal favorite corners of Tyria).

Over at, Scott Hawkes lists seven key takeaways from his Beta experience. You should read the whole article, but this quote best summarizes Scott’s impressions: “I bloody loved it.” Not to be outdone, Bio Break offers 30 things they gleaned from the Beta Weekend Event. Syp writes, “Guild Wars 2 feels quite familiar to anyone who played Guild Wars 1 , even though it’s a new game. There’s just enough of the old, particularly in style, to carry on the tradition and keep the connection between the two games alive.”

It looks like Distilled from Talk Tyria spent much of his weekend in world vs. world, and he “loved every single second of the terribly bloody affair.”

On a similar note, Ravious at Kill Ten Rats takes a look at the Bank and the Trading Post. He concludes, “ArenaNet has put serious thought and love in to these two simple features.”

PCWorld offers a lengthy look at their experience during the Beta Weekend Event, complete with loads of screenshots. And from the other side of the Atlantic, French site Gamekult provides a thorough overview of their Beta experience, with plenty of gameplay videos.

And to round things out, how about a preview of the special reward armor players receive upon completing a dungeon in Guild Wars 2? Well, GuildMag has it!

Link Round Up – Post Beta Edition[edit]


Our final Beta Weekend Event before the launch of Guild Wars 2 is over. We’re barreling toward August 28th (August 25th for the pre-purchase crowd), but we know it feels like it can’t get here fast enough! We’re hoping to make that wait easier with a roundup of some of this week’s coverage. Follow along for a look at some of the articles and videos gathered from around the Internet. Unsurprisingly, Verene at The Pale Tree spent most of the beta weekend reveling in sylvari gameplay and came away with a roundup of all things sylvari. Dak provided a nice counterpart with some equally thorough coverage of asura gameplay.

Ravious at Kill Ten Rats spent some quality time with the asura as well, and provides an in-depth look at various parts of the asura starting experience.

Several members of the team were on hand for the beta weekend. Bill Murphy tried some PvP in the new Legacy of the Foefire map, Michael Bitton took on the asura experience, and David North wrapped things up with an overall review of both asura and sylvari. jumped in with similar enthusiasm. Tuesday’s edition of Flameseeker Chronicles covered the Legacy of the Foefire map, Matt Daniel covered the sylvari starting experience, and Bree Royce reveled in the “cheerful insanity” of the asura. Eliot Lefebvre wrapped things up by asking the readers to tell about their Beta Weekend Event experiences.

PC World went hands-on with Guild Wars 2 last weekend as well. David Daw logged plenty of gameplay, coming away with overall impressions of the game and a close look at the PvE side of things. Daw writes, “The open-ended nature of dynamic events creates a world you want to explore not out of some completist sensibility but because a new and exciting story could be waiting for you almost anywhere.”

If you’re interested in gameplay footage, Total Biscuit has nearly 40 minutes of thoughts and video of the final Beta Weekend Event, and the Boons and Conditions crew has tournament footage from the Forest of Niflhel, with the promise of more to come. Mike Zadorojny sat down with G4′s Morgan Webb for a GW2 demo, which included a look at the asura and the Legacy of the Foefire PvP map. Nice work, Mike!

That’s a wrap for this week—we’ll see you all in-game before you know it!