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Guild Wars 2 Diary #34: World Vs World

15. June, 2013Tags: Guild Wars 2, Guild Wars 2 Diary, MMO Blog

Guild Wars 2 World vs WorldWe’ve played a lot of the story in these Guild Wars 2 diaries, or have looked at expansions and side quests. That was done on purpose, for a couple of reasons. Firstly, the World Vs World is dominated by people who know what they’re doing and, secondly, it feels so much more directionless than the main game. The minute I log out, the world vs world servers carry on without me, for better or for worse. It’s a great idea, but not as easy to cover in a weekly diary. For that reason, this week we stepped into the mists, sword in hand, to take on our rival worlds in battle.

World Vs World

When you enter the World Vs World servers of Guild Wars 2, prepare yourself for something really unexpected. The boredom. I can hear what you’re thinking: “how is that possible?”

While it’s true that there will be hundreds of people vying over plots of land and building up tactical advantages, those people are off in one of the more interesting servers. You’ll spend a huge chunk of your initial time in a citadel miles away from anyone else, as you’re placed into a queue. There are some places to explore, some battles to fight, but if my experience is anything to go by this is only fun when you have a few allies backing you up. The likelihood of you coming across a large team of enemies is pretty high, and being alone will result in instant death.

Depending on how busy World Vs World is, you may find yourself waiting quite some time to get through to the proper, huge multi-guild battles. Instead you’ll walk around, getting experience, chatting with other players and basically keeping the area around your citadel protected. It won’t take much.

That’s right! You gain experience from playing World Vs World. This, if nothing else, is a decent reason to jump into World Vs World. A new area to explore, lots of experience to get… it makes a nice change from playing alone and you’ll improve your character as you play. You’ll also find experience comes quite quickly if you’ve never played “online” before, so that in itself is something worth checking out.

Guild Wars 2 World vs World

World Vs World is quite simple. There are a series of points that you want to capture for your world. The goal is to capture them all. If only it was that simple. There are multiple defences around each point. Some are as simple as killing everybody you come across and waiting, while others will require siege weaponry to get through. Smaller areas might be taken with as little as two or three people, while the bigger areas will require hundreds of players on both sides.

If it sounds entertaining, it is. It’s a nice idea and it’s pretty well implemented. If only it worked flawlessly, there might be more to see.

Welcome to the Mists

When you’re finally accepted into one of the actual combat areas, things become a lot more claustrophobic. While your initial base is surrounded by miles of empty land, in which you can wipe out small enemy units and NPCs, the middle areas of the map are a no-man’s-land, a mismatch of different points owned by different factions. You’re going to find yourself around enemies more quickly here, and that’s going to go one of two ways.

Either you’re going to be part of a big group or you’re going to end up alone. If you follow a big group, you should be fine. Try to stick behind a line of allies, because as terrible as it sounds, they’re the guys that are going to fall first. If you roll out into a group of enemies, you’re going to die before you get out of the roll and, even if you don’t, you’ll find yourself poisoned, slowed and more. That’s presuming that you even have a choice in the matter.

world vs world events in guild wars 2

During the biggest fights, things lag terribly. Players pop up randomly in front of you, the framerate drops exponentially… If you have a fantastic connection this might not happen, but the more I played, the more it became obvious that those around me were just hitting whatever they could and hoping for the best. The battle was huge in a narrow area and until things started going badly, I was actually having fun, but it’s certainly not as smooth as I would have liked.

Aside from that though, it’s fantastic how easy it is to get in with a big group. Basically find a unit of your players and follow them. Somebody is bound to take up the role of leader, and I generally have found that they know what they’re doing. They may not go exactly where you want to go, they might not suggest people do things the way you think they ought, but it’s safer than going it alone and you may just find others to play with.

If you end up alone, you’re going to be in trouble. There’s probably ways that you can do this, leeching off bigger units for back-up, fighting anybody who seems a threat and then running off if things get too tough, but even then, I suppose, you’re far from a lone wolf. The only true way of being able to get things going as a lone wolf will be to just fight other lone wolves, and considering that everybody is warped up to level 80, that becomes more like a game of Rock, Paper, Scissors than it does an actual PvP match.

guild wars 2 w vs w

Your best bet is to try and settle down with a team, and just do what you can. If you’re having trouble finding a team, hang around spawn points until you meet with somebody and follow them to their destination. If nothing else, there will at least be safety in numbers (well, relative safety to relative numbers).

Conclusion

Last week I spoke about expanding your horizons a little, and trying out parts of the game that perhaps you wouldn’t otherwise. Heading into World Vs World in Guild Wars 2 is well worth doing for a number of reasons, not least that you gain experience and you’ll gain it quickly. You’d be better off doing that than repeating renown heart quests and events.

However, there are gameplay issues that make it not especially fun, and although the good bits are very good, that general feel is constantly interrupted by a lack of action, or too much action. This leads to what I can only imagine will be a love-it-or-hate-it experience for those not specifically interested in PvP. Really though, you’ll have to try it to be sure.

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