Saturday, June 9, 2012

In Depth Guild Wars 2 Beta

Charrlie wanted to play, so I decided to let him. As you may have been able to guess, he decided to make a Charr.

Charrlie is loyal. And likes hammers.

That's your standard hero page. It lets you toggle your weapon sets, look at yourself in your town clothes or armor and review your stats. The left hand tab also has all the most important information that you need. From here, you can also immediately equip whatever weapons and items you want from your bags. In this case, Charrlie had a sword, a warhorn, a greatsword and his hammer to cycle through. But, wait, you ask, what do all these weapons do?

Different classes use weapons differently and learn different skills.
That's what the weapon skill tab is for. You can look and see what weapons you have unlocked skills for, see what they do, and quickly scroll through to see what else you need to unlock. One of the problems for this though is that you'll need to very quickly learn the Guild Wars 2 iconography. Their site gives you a good brief on conditions and boons, but you'll want to learn what all these things mean. The greatsword ability here has a damage ability, what it does as a finisher and the range. The greatsword is actually one of my favorite Warrior weapons because it has broad, sweeping attacks and amazing mobility. Charrlie was more a fan of the great hammer, which gave him massive smashing and a cripple, among other things. But, you never unlearn weapon skills, and they don't take too long to master. So, practice with a few and find which one suits you best.

Choose wisely, though you can respec.
After you hit level 5, you can get your first utility skills (or a new healing skill). These are going to help define your role, along with your weapon. As a Warrior with "For Great Justice" and a greatsword I was a mobile, sticky assassin that people have trouble escaping. Which is a pleasant change of pace from most warrior archetypes who get kited to heck and back.
You get dailies starting at level 1. Hooray!
One last tab you'll want to familiarize yourself with are your achievements. Filling out achievements gets you stuff. Stuff makes you happy. As you can see on the left, you have daily achievements, monthly achievements and then achievements based around different things, such as PvP. The Hall of Monuments is strictly for people carrying over from Guild Wars 1, but it is there for completeness.

Now, how about convenience factors? You can respec fairly painlessly and you can warp to any waypoint you've found beforehand. You get nice big pop ups to tell you when a public quest has happened. You even see on your mini-map where downed allies are that you can revive. Also, your map shows you where points of interest, skill challenges and the important (non-random) public quests are. So, you should never be lost, should always be able to go where you need to go and always able to help. It's like the opposite of Star Wars: The Old Republic in every regard. Wait, you want even more convenience? What about recoloring your armor with ease?

You can do that!

In the Charr area, at least, you have a good amount of atmosphere and chatter among the NPCs. It may get repetitive if you stick around, but if you just move through at a steady pace it won't get too grating. The human starting area had this too, even if it was a bit frantic.



Until next time, here's Charrlie's Voltron impersonation.

"And I'll form the head!"

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