And by ’60 Hours’ I mean ’52 Hours’, though we did start an hour-or-so earlier, so ’53 Hours’ is more accurate. And by ‘Screens’ I refer to hi-res in-game screenshots. Basically, what I’m getting at is that I spent the whole weekend playing Guild Wars 2 with just enough sleep to continue on.
Oh, and that Guild Wars 2 is so damn good.
So, where do I even start about this past weekend? Well, I spent the time exploring and fighting and discovering the lands laid out for players for the beta, but there was still so much I missed! I complained about the 45 minutes given to players at the conventions, but even with 60 hours I still wanted more time to do everything! But, with the time given and what I played through, I would say the 5 long years waiting for the game was worth it. And what I did manage to see and discover was just so wonderful! Allow me to show you just a very small piece of the visual styling pie of Guild Wars 2.
So, what was the most enjoyable? For me, it was the home cities for the races. If you look back at previous MMO titles and even Guild Wars itself, major towns and cities had activity in it, but it always felt dead and dull to me. NPCs followed a path and would repeat it forever and there wasn’t much to explore in terms of the people of the cities you would visit. Yes, you could walk up to them an talk with them, but they always said the same thing, and usually it was a single line. But then here comes Guild Wars 2 with these huge cities like Hoelbrak or Divinity’s Reach, and just running around you actually hear (with your ears) whispers of gossip between two NPCs or an argument between a couple or kids playing on a small path of grass pretending to be the great heroes of old. And then you go up to talk to them, and they’ll tell you that Jora is their favorite and they want to grow up to be a great warrior like her. It’s not just the voice acting that adds itself to this immersion, but it’s also how a player can interact with these usually lifeless NPCs that actually gives them life and in turn brings a static boring town instance into a bustling trading outpost. This, to me, is something that puts Guild Wars 2 miles ahead of other MMOs.
And that’s just one of many aspects that draws me to this amazing game! There’s the player’s personal story, combat, dynamic events, and I could go on, basically listing off every little detail of Guild Wars 2, but another time and another post, and perhaps another beta event!
However, despite how awesome and amazing the game was, even for a beta release, some aspects were lacking. There is a major problem I found and I think ArenaNet should get on this immediately. Namely, the lack of fisticuffs. Like with the Elder Scrolls universe, the lack of hand-to-hand combat with one’s fists is very crucial to Killface’s existence and…
Oh…oh wait, there was that norn keg brawling mini-game in Hoelbrak. Huh. Well, I got nothing then! Stay lazy, Tyrian friends!