Guild Wars 2 – A Social Experience
The developers of Guild Wars 2, ArenaNet, held a panel at Comic-Con discussing how Guild Wars 2 is being built to be a social game, and how this is the proper way to build an MMO. The developers sitting on the panel were Colin Johanson, Kekai Kotaki, Kristen Perry, Bobby Stein, and Leah Rivera.
Johanson said that most MMOs being sold today have broken quest structures, the main problem being that too many people are completing the exact same objectives. Guild Wars 2 is less focused on this and the developers are focusing instead on creating a more social experience. He said, "It's about coming together and building communities."
Of course, the social elements aren't pushed forward artificially, according to ArenaNet. When players enter combat together, there will be individual experience points and loot rolls, creating an environment where players organically decide to work together.
ArenaNet also thinks that the standard trio of MMORPG classes (tank, damage per second, healer) is a broken system for MMOs. Due to this belief, Guild Wars 2 does not make players choose one class or another. Rather, each character in it will have their own healing capabilities. This allows players to quickly get into quests and objectives rather than wait around to form a group for too long.
When asked when the closed beta for Guild Wars 2 will begin, ArenaNet said, "We have not announced when the game will go into beta," but further stated that all of the information gathered from the beta will determine whether or not a public trial version will be released before the launch date of the full title.
One fan asked if they could share what the final profession will be in Guild Wars 2, but the developers shied away from the answer. However, they did say that it will be "highly controversial" and that they will announce the final profession by the end of the year.
All of the information that the developer team talked about at the panel seems in line with the rest of Guild Wars 2, which is to say, it's very different from other post-WoW MMOs. This is probably a good thing after 6 years of that type of game. Guild Wars 2's release date has not been announced, but we'll be sure to post any new information that comes up in the days before its release.