Tag Archives: Guild Wars 2

Foostival 2015!

FoostivalI know I’m quite late with this. The British Foostival page has been online, announced and advertised for for quite some time already. Us Germans were a bit slower. But we’re finally ready to announce that yes, Foostival is coming to Germany again! Foostival 2015 will take place on March 21 in France, England, Germany and Belgium! Just like last year, the German Foostival will be in the rooms of the SAE institute in Hamburg.

But why am I telling you all this? Well, if you’re German, click here to read the German text as I’ll tell you more about our Foostival down there. If you’re not, but you still want to know what Foostival is (or if you’re close to London and want to participate yourself), read on here. :)

Foostival first took place in 2013. Back then, it was only held in France. Foostival is an offline community meeting made by fans for fans. Watch the next two videos to get a glimpse on what to expect from Foostival. In short: We don’t only want to sit in front of our computers, never knowing who the other people are. We want to actually meet others and get to know them!

After Foostival 2013, the French fansites reached out to other European fansites and in 2014 it took place in France and Germany. It was also organized in-game by Romanian fans. Sadly, bookahnerk and I could not go to the one in Germany as we were too busy with real life, but we helped a bit with the organization already.

 

This year – *knocks on wood* – it will be different. We fully intend to be there for the German Foostival 2015! And we’re in the middle of organizing everything together with GuildNews and gw2community.de. But that’s not the only change. This year, Foostival will also take place in Belgium and in London! They (Black Lion Chest and Healing over Time are the organizers over there) started already with the selling of tickets. They have a slightly different system where you immediately buy your ticket. Go to the English Foostival website to get more information. You will also be able to buy your tickets  there (just look for the link on the top).

quagganBut don’t be sad if you can’t go. There is a “Draw me a Quaggan” contest that you can enter. It’s quite easy to tell what you have to do for this one, right? In case it’s not that obvious: Draw a quaggan. There aren’t that many instructions. Just do some quaggan-related art and send it to list-eu@foostival.com (including your GW2 display name). The deadline for this is Monday March 16th, at 10:59PM GMT and the winner will be chosen at the Foostival! But please don’t ask me what you can win, as I don’t know this myself yet. It’s organized by the French fansites.

FoostivalFoostival 2015 wird dieses Jahr wieder wie letztes Jahr auch im SAE-Institut in Hamburg stattfinden.

Vorweg aber erst nochmal ein kurzer historischer Abriss über das Foostival: Foostival ist ein Offline-Community Meeting, welches von Fans (bzw. Fanseiten) für Fans von Guild Wars 2 durchgeführt wird. Es ist ja irgendwie auch das Schöne an Online-Spielen, dass man nicht nur alleine vor dem PC spielt, sondern sich irgendwann auch aufmachen und die ganzen Leute einmal treffen kann, die man sonst nur “virtuell” auf dem Bildschirm sieht.

Zum ersten Mal fand es 2013 in Frankreich statt.

Nach 2013 fragten die französischen Organisatoren bei anderen europäischen Fanseiten an, ob auch bei uns Interesse an der Organisation eines Foostivals bestünde. 2014 gab es das Foostival dann nicht nur in Frankreich, sondern auch bei uns in Deutschland. Rumänische Fans hatten das Foostival immerhin in-game organisiert. Leider konnten damals bookahnerk und ich nicht hier in Deutschland vor Ort sein. Das Real Life hatte uns zu fest im Griff. Bei der Organisation im Vorfeld hatten wir aber schon ein wenig helfen können.

 

Dieses Jahr (wir klopfen an dieser Stelle wie wild auf Holz) wird es aber anders sein! Dieses Jahr sind wir dabei! Momentan stecken wir mitten in der Organisation des Events mit GuildNews und gw2community.de. Daneben wird das Foostival dieses Jahr auch noch in Belgien und in London stattfinden. Die Organisatoren in London (Black Lion Chest und Healing over Time) haben mit dem Ticketverkauf bereits begonnen. Das aber nur am Rande, falls ihr dort eure Tickets kaufen wollt – das ist dann aber natürlich auch nur für das Foostival in London und nicht bei uns. ;)

Das Foostival findet in allen vier Ländern (Frankreich, Belgien, Großbritannien und Deutschland) zur gleichen Zeit statt, nämlich am 21. März 2015.

Bei uns kauft ihr aber nicht direkt euer Ticket, sondern ihr meldet euch (und eine weitere Person, wenn ihr nicht alleine kommen mögt) hier an und wenn sich zu viele anmelden sollten (die Räume bieten nur einer begrenzten Anzahl an Personen Platz), wird das Los entscheiden, wer teilnehmen darf und wer nicht. Natürlich müsst ihr aber auch nichts zahlen, wenn ihr gar nicht wisst, ob ihr teilnehmen dürft! Und ihr werdet eine E-Mail erhalten, die euch mitteilen wird, ob ihr einen Platz bekommen habt oder erst einmal auf der Warteliste steht.

Ein Video mit allen Erklärungen gibt es mittlerweile auch dank Durzan:

Bei Fragen könnt ihr jederzeit eine E-Mail an list-de@foostival.com schreiben. Wir helfen euch dort gerne weiter. :)

quagganAber auch wenn ihr nicht zum Foostival kommen könnt, könnt ihr trotzdem vielleicht auf eine andere Art dabei sein. Es gibt den Zeichne mir einen Quaggan-Wettbewerb! Schickt euer Kunstwerk, welches natürlich mindestens einen Quaggan beinhalten sollte, bis spätestens Montag, den 16. März 2015 22:59 GMT (also 23:59 in Deutschland), an list-eu@foostival.com. Die Teilnehmer des Foostivals werden dann den Gewinner bzw. die Gewinnerin bestimmen. Fragt mich aber bitte nicht, was ihr gewinnen könnt. Ich habe nämlich keine Ahnung. Das organisieren die französischen Fanseiten und das ist wohl erst mal noch eine Überraschung.

Honorary Nerdy Bookahs prize for Bolthound

On Monday, we could finally announce the official winners of ArenaNet’s Wintersday Window Decoration Contest. Unfortunately for us, our favourite stencil did not make it into the top 5. But hey, ArenaNet has nothing against us giving away extra prizes for stencils that we really loved, so this is exactly what we decided to do now.

By Bolthound

By Bolthound

This is our favourite stencil! Amazingly, both bookahnerk and I agreed pretty fast on which stencils we liked and which we didn’t like (couples do tend to get more and more alike with every year, right? I’m just not sure if that shouldn’t actually scare me… :p). This stencil, in our opinion, is really cool especially with the “easy” design and the humourous scene it depicts.

Having said that, we would like to give our honorary prize to Bolthound! You will get – if you choose to accept it – one grey GW2 t-shirt (I’m not sure if those are actually the ones that the top 5 will get, too) in size L or XL (your choice!) and a surprise in-game package with a few items (nothing like a precursor, unfortunately ^^).

Opinions on Heart of Thorns

There is this draft sitting here in our blog where I listed all the known facts about the upcoming expansion for Guild Wars 2 and where I have already started adding some thoughts. However, I don’t like just shoving something out there only because it’s the one topic everybody talks about right now. I need time to phrase my thoughts – or even actually realize what it is that I am thinking. :p

Since I’ve last worked on that draft, some more information has come out. Additionally, I have read through the transcription of the announcement again and pondered for a bit more. By now, I cannot even tell you what I think of the expansion. I am not hyped. I am not super excited. But I am looking forward to it. How much depends on quite a lot of details.

GW2 Burning Lion's Arch

For one, I am sorry to admit, but I don’t like the combat in Guild Wars 2. Well, some parts of it. I miss being a healer so much! I miss having a clear role in a group (even “support” or “control” would be nice). And I miss actually seeing what the enemy is doing, what I’m doing and what the other players are doing (see the screenshot above ^^). Anyway, what I found is that while I really don’t like combat in Guild Wars 2, I also really love combat in Guild Wars 2! :p It all depends on the context and the setting. I still strongly believe that just with a few small changes, the marionette fight would have been perfect. On the other hand, I really do love playing pvp in Guild Wars 2. There, if you ask me, the combat system makes so much more sense! Especially in sPvP where there are no big zergs. This is where the system shines.

Having said that, I wish for more things to do that do not involve combat in the PvE side of the game. Fishing, archaeology (something from WoW), minions like in Rift (not really a game, but something to click…) or the pet battles in WoW – hey, what about Polymock? Any of these things would make me very happy! Instead, we are going to get the mastery system.

And here is where I need more information.

What we do know about acquiring mastery points is this:

The WvW ability system is a bit of a parallel for what we’re trying to accomplish with masteries, so you can use that as a concept. We want to provide that same concept and evolve it even more with PvE. It’ll complement everything that you’re doing: combat, exploration, lore, building, crafting… all of those components will have elements that are supported by it, with combat being the most important one when you think about true, meaningful progression. (Source)

Exploration and lore have potential, but again “combat being the most important”. So, we’ll see.

The one thing that did get me a bit excited were the guild halls. However, this is also the feature that doesn’t seem to get much coverage at all at the moment. I assume (note: subjective impression here :p) that ArenaNet hasn’t actually implemented much of that feature yet. We do get to see a very short scene of guild halls in the trailer which shows them being built in fast forward mode. I hope that they will be more than our home instances and that they will be meaningul and customizable (again, not like home instances).

I would also be excited about the Revenant, but I have to try out the profession first in order to tell you whether I like it or not. In theory, I should absolutely love the necromancer in Guild Wars 2. I love everything about it – in theory. But once I try to play it, I close the game and walk away from the PC within a few minutes. I don’t know what it is, but I cannot play it.

GW2_Heart of Thorns_Rytlock_Revenant_049

Rytlock using an ability

So there you go. My opinion in a nutshell: It sounds like a solid expansion and has everything that people expect from a “classic expansion” (in Guild Wars 2-style, of course, with no new level cap or new tier of armor), but it has nothing that gets me “over the moon”-excited either – wait, there are two things:

  1.  The soundtrack! The one song we got to hear is amazing!
  2. The world design. The one aspect of Guild Wars 2 where I never ever had anything negative to say. The art team is awesome if you ask me.

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Heart of Thorns: Screenshots

Bilingual entry: English first. Scroll down for the German translation.

I had originally just wanted to take a few screenshots of the announcement video to complement my “opinions” post that I’ve been writing since Saturday. However, that post is still not done, but I ended up with more than 100 screenshots. For your convenience, I already sorted out the boring ones and present to you screenshots of Heart of Thorns showing all the good in-game scenes that we were already allowed to see during the video: Specialisations, the maguuma jungle region, Mursaat, Rytlock as Revenant, the new WvW borderlands map and sPvP area (not sure which one is which, to be honest) and of course, the really short glimpse at the guild halls.

I did not include any pictures of the concept art as I wanted to limit it to in-game pictures which represent a lot better what we are actually going to get. :)

Scroll down below the gallery for the German translation / Scrollt unter die Gallerie für die deutsche Übersetzung.

Deutsche Übersetzung

Winners of the Wintersday Window Decoration Contest

First of all, thank you to everyone who participated! We saw a lot of great stencils and bookahnerk and I had a hard time choosing our three favourites. Two of the three that we had voted for are also in the top 5.

So, without further ado, congratulations to the winners:

  1. Plume
  2. Chyana
  3. Bibi
  4. The Artist
  5. Razy

ArenaNet will also make an official news post about the winners of the contest soon. They also uploaded the stencils that were sent to the participating fansites. You can see them all in their flickr album. Which one is your favourite? :)

 

Guild Wars 2 at PAX

Less than 48 hours now until we finally hear what ArenaNet has planned for Guild Wars 2 with “Heart of Thorns”. They also seem to want to celebrate this by giving us players a double XP weekend.

GW2 Heart of Thorns

They also linked to the channels with the livestreams. Quite obviously, the official international – and English-speaking – channel is the official Guild Wars 2 one. If you want the German one, head over to Honeyball tomorrow who is going to broadcast together with GuildNews. They are going to start on Saturday, 4.30 pm (German time). The PAX panel will start an hour later. There are also going to be a French and a Spanish channel.

Additionally, if you – or somebody you know – wants to buy a copy of Guild Wars 2, wait for the weekend. Their announcement post also mentions a 75 % sale on January 24 and 25!

This does indeed sound big if you ask me. I can’t wait to find out what they are going to announce!

Guild Wars 2 – Heart of Thorns speculation

I assume most of you have heard about “Heart of Thorns” by now. I will try to keep this mostly spoiler-free, but if you haven’t played the latest story bit, you will at least not want to click on the play button of the video. Other than that, I’m not mentioning the latest story bits in this post.

We will get to hear more – or anything other than the title “Heart of Thorns” – on January 24 (either at PAX or online on Twitch). Until then, there’s not much left for us to do than speculate. I guess in my case, it’s not so much speculation as rather a whole lot of wishful thinking. :p

Who here remembers World of Warcraft’s Cataclysm? In case you have no idea what that was, it is their third expansion. And not just any expansion. In the beginning when the game launched, there were two continents (Kalimdor and Eastern Kingdoms). With time, new zones, raids, instances etc. were added. Every bit of that also added story and continued the world’s timeline. But the old zones remained mostly static and stayed in its original time. So, if something big happened with the introduction of a new zone, this mostly did not reflect on the old ones. NPCs were still going around their daily routines just as if time stood still. Quests you did there stayed the same and were set “before” whatever happened in a new zone. Cataclysm changed that. Not only did the whole world get changed in appearance, Blizzard also used this opportunity to bring all zones to present time. No more confusing “this zone was here before the other zone, so what happens here is actually taking place 2 years before what happens in that other zone”. For one short moment, it felt like Azeroth was “alive”. It changed and evolved.

With the Living Story in Guild Wars 2, we have already seen something like this. Lion’s Arch got destroyed and is now slowly getting rebuild (look here for several screenshot galleries of the old, intermediate and destroyed Lion’s Arch). At the same time, however, when we do a Personal Story part that takes place in Lion’s Arch, we get to see the present time Lion’s Arch and not the old one anymore (this is due to technical limitations, actually, which doesn’t make it easy for them to have the new LA present as a map and an old LA present for when you enter that zone for your personal story). This makes it quite confusing, but it also shows that ArenaNet is dedicated more to the living story and the world evolving than in keeping the personal story in its own time frame.

Now wouldn’t an expansion (I am certain that this is what “Heart of Thorns” is going to be) be the perfect opportunity for ArenaNet to bring all zones to the current time again? Again, I don’t think personal story – which can’t just be brought to the current time – is a limiting factor for ArenaNet, as can be seen with story bits taking place on the Lion’s Arch map.

Lion’s Arch (and parts of other maps) has been changed already, but other parts of the world haven’t been. NPCs are still concerned about Zhaitan, even though we already killed him. Scarlet came and left. ArenaNet could bring the whole world to a post-Scarlet state including new dynamic events everywhere which would make the whole “old world” much more interesting again for those of us who have seen everything by now anyway. They could change all NPCs accordingly, so the stories, concerns, thoughts reflect what has happened in the last 2,5 years. I think this would definitely make the game world feel much more alive than it currently does.

Other than that, I guess I am hoping for “the usual” that other MMOs offer with their expansions. A new race would be nice, but even though everything seemed to hint at the Tengu in the beginning with them hiding behind their wall near Lion’s Arch, I’m not sure they are still in the focus and I don’t know what other race could become playable. A new profession would be great. I always loved the dervish in Guild Wars (I started with Nightfall, after all) and would love to see something similar in style in Guild Wars 2. But even though I am wishing for a new profession, I do not think we will get one, to be honest. Instead, I think we will rather get new weapons for existing professions. Maybe even only already existing weapons – I have wanted my mesmer to be able to dual-wield pistols from the very beginning. And why can’t my engineer wield a hammer or a spanner? New weapons for the professions or existing ones but new to that specific profession, I don’t really care. I just want more choices! :)

I am also expecting them to deliver guild halls. This is a feature that’s been asked for even before launch. I don’t know what they will include or what we’re going to be able to do there, but there you go. Guild halls! :p I would love to see housing, but to be honest, I don’t think we will ever see it in Guild Wars 2. It just doesn’t really seem to fit the direction they are going with the game.

 More legendary weapons is another thing I would love to see (mostly because I don’t like any of the current ones enough to get into the grind). But again, I am not sure this is their focus now.

In the end, I think the expansion will mostly be about new zones and more living story. I like to keep my expectations low, so that I won’t be easily disappointed. Anyway, we will know more soon! Less than a week from now.