The fellows over at GW2Tools.com have launched a very handy Guild Wars 2 Traits calculator. TheÂ calculatorÂ is updated with all the latest traits and should offer hours of entertainment for all theory-crafters who want to be prepared for launch!Read more & comment >>
Archive for the Skills Category
ArenaNet will have learned a lot from last weekend’s limited beta test, and in the latest development update, Â Eric Flannum, Randy Knapp, Devon Carver and Jon Peters look at some of the changes being made to the game.
Many of you noticed the armor durability mechanic in the Beta and the team explain why this is now in the game. The mini-map compass, large scale story events and boons and conditions. Eric also talks about the downed state in-depth and how this has been changed. Don’t miss this update, packed full of great stuff.
The release of the 8th and final profession – the Mesmer – was accompanied by a deluge of interviews. Through these interviews and the profession page, we have learned that the Mesmer is a magical-duelist who uses his or her illusions, and mental trickery to confuse a foe and setup situations beneficial only to the Mesmer.
Although each interview in itself has given us only a brief glimpse into the Mesmer profession, the combination of different interviews gives us a more complete picture than meets the eye at first. So what have we learned about this profession? This article attempts to make sense of all the information.Read more & comment >>
250 seems to have changed the mesmer a lot. He has a lot more visual effects for one, so that foes and allies alike can see he’s doing *something*. He’s also decided to move the names of spells to new unrelated spells, just to confuse us… ah yes, mesmers like to do that.
But has the mesmer gameplay really changed? I will argue that it hasn’t, really, and will provide examples of parallels.Read more & comment >>
The end of the convention season is here, and rounding up the fieldÂ is the G*Star 2011.Â Guild Wars 2 developers ArenaNet and theirÂ publisher NCsoft are of course at site, for the first time showcasing Guild Wars 2 to the Asian market.
For the convention the Guild Wars 2 demo has been beefed up, with more character creation options, better in-game cut scenes, more ways to earn skills in gameÂ and UI improvements. Eric Flannum explains some of the changes in detail in a dedicated blog postÂ over at the ArenaNet blog. Chuck Jackman is going to show off the improved in-game cinematic cut scenes in another blog post tomorrow (so stay tuned!).
The G*Star 2011 gaming convention is held in Busan, South Korea and it isÂ running November 10 to November 13.Read more & comment >>
The engineer got a tool belt overcharge,Â where every slotted heal/utility skill has a tool belt counterpart. Rangers are able to hotswap between two different pets in combat. And combos have aÂ graphical interphase and their very own nomenclature (“initators” set up the combo and “finishers”, well,Â finish). These are but some of the news inÂ theÂ blog post Jon Peters just posted over at the ArenaNet blog.
It was a while since we last heard anything about how the Guild Wars 2 game mechanics are coming along, so this blog post is welcome in deed, and gives some much neededÂ extra fuel for all theÂ build builders and theory crafters out there.Read more & comment >>
It’s Thursday and the long-awaited profession release has come.
So it’s the Engineer, not the mesmer. Sad panda. In any event:
The latest profession revealed for Guild Wars 2 is the engineer, a brand new profession. The engineer doesn’t have a large selection of weapons, but they make up for this in the diversity of their skills. For example, the engineer has a selection of Weapon Kits that gives the engineer access to new weapons.
Among their other skill types, the engineer can use different Backpack Kits (such as a mine or med kit) and Turrets (like a net or healing turret). Furthermore, the engineer has a special set of skills called the Tool Belt, which adds to the effectiveness of their other skills (such as a detonation option for mines).
As usual, the profession release comes with detailed descriptions of what makes the engineer unique, and comes with a selection of skill videos.
Thanks to Guildoholic and RDarken for spotting this first on our site and to RDarken for formulating the announcement and sending it too me while I was still half asleep (which is much better than what I originally had)!Read more & comment >>
I’ve been looking at the Guardian skills… And I’ve been seeing some patterns in the weapon skills. A quick look at the Elementalist supports these patterns, and I suspect the same patterns are also present in the other professions.
These patterns help understand not only how the gameplay will be like, but also what kind of design decisions went behind these decisions and why.Read more & comment >>
Part 1 discusses energy, energy potions, small vs large fights, and potions in PvP. Energy is more used for defensive skills, when you fail to get out of harm’s way. As such, skilled players will require fewer potions. In PvP, potions are free and limited, thus acting as a resource for players to manage.
Part 2 discusses skills (weapon, elite, healing, etc), especially the role of elites in PvP and in regular play. Elites won’t be the mainstay of builds anymore (weapons and traits will define your regular gameplay now), instead, elites will be game-changing skills that change the gameplay in order to open opportunities or allow your group to regroup and recover.
Go read the interviews now, what are you waiting for?Read more & comment >>
Yup its that time of the week again when the powers that be let me loose in blog land. This week I’ll be taking a break from looking at the developing World vs World PvP that’ll feature in GW2 and having a look at the balancing act that takes place every skill update. The question that tends to get asked a lot during the transition period after a major skill update is Can any game truly be balanced?
Now I could just answer yes but then that’d make this a really short blog…tempting though. Instead lets look at what balance, in theory, means to MMO such as Guild Wars, World of Warcraft, Warhammer Online or any other similar type game.
Balance in a nutshell.
My view is that there are two definitions of balance is in a MMO environment
1. Each class/build must either have a counter class/build or there are methods to counter the class/build.
Example would be a Crip-shot Ranger is able to counter a melee class by hindering their movement or countering a N/A bomber in Jade Quarry by using Rend Enchantment
2. There shouldn’t be one skill or build that is vastly overpowered to anything else or there is no effective counter to.
Example would be the original A/Me perma-sin and the original Ursan build.
The main reason for balancing is obviously to prevent the game ending up in a stagnant mess where if you’re not using a certain class or build you’re either going to die a lot (PvP) or get passed up on groups (PvE). This is more felt in PvP than in PvE because when people die a lot to one particular class they tend to complain about it and that’s good. I’d rather have PvP like GW where no matter what class I play I can usually create a build to suit certain needs, rather than playing one class but knowing that I will loose to xyz class because I don’t have any counters to it.
PvE still needs to be balanced because what’s the point in playing if once I’ve gotten the uber build of l33tness I know I’m going to steamroller everything. When the Ursan build got nerf I was one of the few that thought it was a good thing because it meant people would have to think about their builds rather than using an ‘easy win’ skill. I’d rather feel like I’m being challenged rather than C-spacing my way to the end.
Thats not to say that there shouldn’t be any chance of developing an overpowered build but once one has been discovered and it doesn’t require a great amount of skill to play (the original Displacement Aura assassin springs to mind) then the devs need to nerf it, or bring other class skills to a similar level as a counter. The same goes for PvE but changing what skills the monsters have, such as enchantment removal skills the scarabs were given in the crystal desert, is also an option to use.
Can a game be truly balanced?
Yes a game can be balanced, using the definitions I gave a the start, but only if the system used is simple and the developers watch all aspects of the game. The more variables you add then the harder it will become to keep that balance. We’ve seen this and Arena Net have said it themselves that by adding more and more skills into the game, Guild Wars has become harder to keep balanced.
If you want to add anything then feel free to add a comment.
Mal.Read more & comment >>