Guild Wars 2 Bazaar Of The Four Winds Begins July 9th

ArenaNet will launch Guild Wars 2‘s next in-game event after the Fourth Of July weekend. Bazaar of the Four Winds is a gathering of merchants that will provide the community with new summer-time diversions.

In Bazaar of the Four Winds, players will be able to check out a market filled with shady characters and folks selling special magic crystals that give players new types of movement skills. The update will also bring a new mini-game, a race, a Sky Svavenger Hunt, new rewards, the account achievement rewards system, and a new PvP map, Skyhammer.

The Belcher’s Bluff mini-game will allow players to test their Omnoberry Juice drinking skills. The mini-game is a permanent addition to Guild Wars 2 and players will even be able to challenge friends with the game’s PvP mode.

The Sanctum Spirit Race will challenge players to race through an obstacle course. Players will have to leap over barriers, fly through the air, and more in order to come out on top. The Lessons from the Sky Scavenger Hunt will also test the skills of players, tasking them to explore hard-to-reach places in the Labyrinthine Cliffs while searching for Sky Crystals.

As for rewards, players will be able to earn special back items for competing in the Sanctum Sprint. For completing the meta achievement for the Bazaar of the Four Winds update, players will get a special quartz resource node in their home instance.

Once there, you can harvest the node to get quartz, which is a material needed for new recipes which are also being added in this update. For those who finish the Lessons from the Sky achievement, you’ll be awarded with a mini Zephyr Sanctum airship model.

Bazaar of the Four Winds will also introduce the Skyhammer PvP map. In Skyhammer, players will battle for control of three capture points while using Asura jump pads to avoid shattering floor panels and a floating cannon that rains down death from above.

The update will also bring the Account Achievement Reward System. With this feature, players will be able to unlock things like exclusive new armor skins, weapon skins, permanent account bonuses, laurels, gems, gold, powerful items, and PvP and WvW rewards for earning achievement points.

Guild Wars 2 introduces the Aetherblades

Who are the Aetherblades? ArenaNet is glad you’ve asked and has prepared a well-researched essay on the topic. The Aetherblades are a new group that has crashed the Dragon’s Bash and is looking to make all kinds of trouble as players head into Guild Wars 2‘s living story for July.

The devs struggled with how to make a new pirate faction that wasn’t quite like all of the other pirates in an already piratetastic title. The solution, the article says, was to combine steampunk, lightning, and airships to make a dashing group of electric buccaneers: “We imbued the Aetherblades a lightning aesthetic: They arrive in a bolt of lightning and their skill effects, traps, and weapons are all laced with electrical effects.”

Players will face when they tangle with the Aetherblades, from the basic minions to the razzle-dazzle officer corps.

Guild Wars 2 Sky Pirates Of Tyria Event Launching Next Week

On June 25th, Guild Wars 2‘s next event “Sky Pirates of Tyria” will commence. This event will come with new content to keep players occupied into July.

During this month’s Dragon Bash celebration, a murder occurred in Lion’s Arch. Inspector Ellen Kiel has determined that sky-pirates are the culprits. Players will travel to the new story dungeon of Aetherblade Retreat to defeat the pirates. In the process, they can earn a new Monocle as well as a First Mate Horrik pet. The pirates have also hidden caches of loot throughout the game world for players to find.

While the story dungeon and aches will only be available until July 9th, a new jumping puzzle will be permanently added to the game. The Aetherblade “Not So Secret” Jumping Puzzle will take players to an airship hidden inside of a holographic mountain. This content will be available from July 1st onward.

The Sea of Sorrows Scavenger Hunt is another piece of new permanent content. In this scavenger hunt, players will retrace the steps of Lion’s Arch founder Cobiah Marriner. They’ll have to track down twelve commemorate plaques throughout the Sea of Sorrows. Doing so will earn them five skill points. This scavenger hunt will be available on June 25th, the same day that the GW2 novel Sea of Sorrows starring Marriner will hit stores. That’s some sexy cross-promotion, right there.

The patch also brings plenty of changes to the player-versus-player side of the game. >Custom arenas, which allow players to create private matches with individualized settings, are now out of beta after months of testing. The Spectator Mode is out of beta as well. Mortar Mastery, a new World vs. World ability, will allow players to more effectively use these siege weapons in battle.

ArenaNet also claims that Sky Pirates update is the “largest balance patch ever.” Players can expect big changes to the traits and skills in the game. You can find out about ArenaNet’s general balancing goals for the patch on the official Guild Wars 2 blog.

Gem Store items from the Dragon Bash event are still on sale. However, both the Fireworkers Launch and Rich Dragon Coffers won’t be sold after July 8th. The Dragon Bash Mini Pack, containing holographic pets, will be available until July 15th.

Guild Wars 2 : The Future of WvW

The Guild Wars 2 blog has been updated with a post by Devon Carver that lays out the details on changes coming in the future for the World vs World system. The team is looking to make ‘roles’ in WvW more meaningful, siege weapons better utilized and to add more variety to the experience.

Something that has developed naturally over time and that we would like to encourage is the definition of roles within WvW. Everyone has likely seen a commander laying out battle plans and then subsequently seen that one thief mucking up those plans. It’s our goal to introduce more systems that encourage play within a wide variety of roles, not just those two. Scouts, siege masters, and defenders are only a sampling of the roles we intend to add to. We think that these are all a vital part of the success of any server in WvW, so we want to reward players who do these tasks so that they feel like their time is properly valued.

Guild Wars 2 Leaderboards Now Available

The points have been totaled since March, but gamers now have the ability to actually see their results in a number of categories now that the Guild Wars 2 Leaderboards are finally active. ArenaNet hopes to expand the functionality in future updates but you can already see how you stack up against fellow Guild Wars 2 players in three categories. Currently the lists are limited to the top 100 players in each category, but ArenaNet is looking at ways to expand that list and add in new ways to splice up the data displayed on the Guild Wars 2 Leaderboards.

PvP Guild Wars 2 Leaderboard

  • Dependent on Tournament Matches
  • Must have at least 10 complete matches to track stats (Only single round stats tracked)
  • PvP rating Rank display (but no calculation given yet)
  • Wins, Losses, and Win Percentage also displayed
  • Updated multiple times per day

WvW Guild Wars 2 Leaderboard

  • Similar to what has already be available on the Guild Wars 2 site
  • Ranked by world’s rating
  • Also includes rating, deviation, and volatility
  • Updated weekly

Achievements Guild Wars 2 Leaderboard

  • Only displays total achievement points for right now
  • Update schedule is uncertain but should be regular to facilitate competition

ArenaNet has pointed out that many more statistics would lend themselves to the Guild Wars 2 Leaderboards but wants to implement them slowly and with time to gather player feedback on potential issues and potential metrics to include.

Guild Wars 2 Devs To Focus On Polishing Existing Systems

Guild Wars 2 may be one of the more complicated MMORPGs out there—at least in terms of gameplay—offering a myriad of systems that far surpass anything most games have to offer outside the likes of EVE Online.

The game’s lead designer Isaiah Cartwright says that the developers intend on slowing down the addition of new systems and instead focus their efforts on adding polish to existing ones.

“We’re getting toward the tail end of the number of systems we feel that we can put in the game,” he said in an interview with Forbes. “We’ll be really working on improving the current systems we have and making them more robust.

“I want us to slow down on the number of systems that we’re adding and polish up and clean up the ones that we have added so they’re easier to understand, with better UI for them, those types of things, that’ll be some of the stuff that we’re focused on in the future. One of the major goals of GW was to allow anyone to jump in and play. We have a team dedicated to making sure that it’s easy, and we’re going to continue to improve that process as much as we can.”

The problem with the existing systems is that while most of them are serviceable, not all of them are as well implemented as they ought to be, such as the daily achievement system and World vs World battles.

Guild Wars 2: The End of Culling

The Guild Wars 2  site has been updated with a new developer post that lays out some of the details about forthcoming changes to the world vs world system. Called “culling”, the development feature made some enemy players invisible. With the upcoming patch, culling will be turned off completely.

Normally as you move through the world, any character (either an NPC or another player) within a fairly large circle around you gets reported to your client. This lets the client draw the character, allows you to select the character as an attack target, etc.

In order to cut down on the network resources that were used by the game and to reduce the client-side system requirements, they implemented a culling system, which imposed a limit on the number of characters that could ever be reported to your client. This meant that only the characters closest to you would actually get reported.