Guild Wars 2 has made a definite mark in its first few months since release. Arenanet had Colin Johansen, the Lead Content Developer for the game, address the world in his latest posting to their official site.
For starters, over 3 million games have been sold as of now, and with no subscription fee at all, that means every single copy is a potential player at any given point in time. While it certainly isn’t perfect, the specific payment method for the game ensures that as long as enough copies are sold (and 3 million is a solid number for an MMORPG so relatively new to the market) the game can count on having a fairly consistent player base.
And moving on…
The announcement was far more than simple celebration and Arenanet patting itself on the back. After having heard players complain before about not knowing what to expect in the coming days and weeks and months, they decided to actually listen and take this time to list out many of the features they are working on for the coming year.
The first focus Johansen describes is the combination of community and events. The Guild Wars 2 development team learned a great deal from the holiday events done over the Halloween and Christmas seasons this year, with the intention of creating evolving persistent in-world storylines that evolve and develop over the course of the game itself.
Part of this, he hints, will mean adding new persistent events in each area of the world to give players more chances to meet and combine forces in what are, in my opinion, some of the more interesting and exciting moments of the game. They want to reward players for being in all areas of the world, making the experience as solid and complete in the existing world before adding more areas to it.
He gives some ideas of possible updates for the way their achievement system works, and the ideas all sound good. For starters, having their various achievements award a sort of currency, some type of token, that can then be exchanged in for various rewards, including things like ascended gear and infusions.
Daily achievements will also change from day to day in Guild Wars 2, being different on each day of the week to give new flavor every time. In addition, in keeping with the idea of giving the players more choice in how they enjoy their game, they’ll also be adding a system to allow players to complete their daily achievements in groups. Six achievements? Pick four of them to fulfill your daily allotment.
Cosmetic rewards will continue (and likely include new additions here and there), but Johansen stated in no uncertain terms that they won’t be adding new tiers of gear for people to grind towards every six months.
The Guild in Guild Wars 2
Specifically for guilds, Guild Wars 2 will be implementing content to allow guilds to go on missions together, possibly allowing them to have a visible impact on the world itself. Along with these guild-wide missions they’ll also be implementing new forms of rewards and tools to make it easier for guilds of all sizes to interact in a meaningful way with each other and the full game world.
World v World
The World vs. World system is one of the parts of the game they intend to devote a lot of attention to in an effort to fix current issues. Making it possible to jump characters from server to server (for a fee and with a time delay) is one idea they’ve proposed. Along with this is the ability to ‘guest’ onto a friend’s server, visiting any areas there except for the World vs. World areas.
Johansen also discussed upgrading culling as a mechanic and getting it to the point where there literally is no more culling at all by the end of 2013, and that they will be adding a system of prestige and titles specifically for World vs. World.