Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns is almost upon us!
Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns is less than 2 weeks away and the division is greasing the gears of the Lux Arcana war machine.
For those of a spoiler free nature, turn away now!
Since it’s initial announcement all the way back at the start of 2015 the player base has been eagerly awaiting this next instalment of the Guild Wars 2 franchise which is set to bring a metric-crap-tonne (pretty sure that’s an SI unit) of content for us all.
The expansion promises us:
New profession specialisations
Desert WvW borderlands
Stronghold sPvP game type
New legendary weapons
And much more!
New profession specialisations:
Heart of Thorns is shaking up combat by giving each of the existing professions and the new Revenant access to a new trait line upon reaching level 80. These new specialisations gain access to abilities which switch up combat for each profession. Mesmers become Chronomancers changing the flow of time with their shields and wells; Engineers become hammer wielding Scrappers with floating drones who can resurrect allies and explode on foes.
Below are the Chornomancer and the Necromancer specialisation, the Reaper.
Finally! Guild halls are coming to GW2, from these social centres we will now be launching our guild missions, crafting our WvW guild claiming buffs and giving us all a place to meet up in person.
We have a choice between two sites which we can swap between any time we wish; The Lost Precipice and The Gilded Hollow.
Each guild hall will have to reclaimed from the jungle dragon’s grasp and upgraded over time to bring services and utilities to the area. The guild hall will require a mine to produce one of the new guild currencies, Aetherium, which is the time gate to other upgrades including the arena where we can battle our friends and allies in sPvP matches of our own designs!
Both the arena and the rest of the guild hall can be decorated and customised to make it truly ours by using the new crafting profession, the scribe.
Scribes will be in charge of using the Aetherium mined by the guild to produce all the other upgrades and furnishings for the guild hall.
With each different guild hall we will also get a a set of weapons made available to us by the guild weapon master, the choices of which will depend on the guild hall we choose.
Here is a link to the forum page showing both guild halls and a strawpoll for choosing one. If you are intending to return to GW2 please vote for which guild hall you would like to see us liberate (first).
This is Arenanet’s take on challenging group content and from what we have seen in the betas it certainly is that. With plenty of boss mechanics and tells to learn they will require all 10 members of the group to bring their A game. This is made a little more manageable with the revamped commander and squad system allowing commanders to see so much more information on their squads and organise them as they see fit.
Raids are the only way to get the necessary components for the new legendary armor sets as well so pick out your guild mates and polish off those dodge skills as you’re going to need plenty of both to survive :)
Desert WvW Borderlands:
Gone are the Alpine borderlands of old and in their stead we have the new desert borderlands, containing not only desert but lush oases, underground lava keeps and floating fortresses!
This new map not only brings tonnes (of the regular variety) of new and revamped content but designates each area with it’s own aesthetic and mechanics. Keep lords are no longer one trick ponies easily zerged down or even soloed but will have individual themes befitting their environment from being undead liches in spooky towers to Tengu sword masters with twirling shards of metal death! Variety is indeed the spice of life as this borderland is also set to even the odds by allowing smaller groups to gather up orbs of power for the central map mechanic; an Exalted, Death-Star-esque laser beam which will weaken all enemy gates on the map by set amounts if claimed and held by a server.
Objective claiming has now been moved to a time based system which relies on people taking and holding objectives to have them upgrade; the longer you hold something the stronger it will be! This in addition to the guild tactics which can be applied with a Tactivator Lever (genuinely called that) will chill foes, push them from ledges and lay waste to them with aerial bombardments.
Each keep will have specific abilities depending on the number of surrounding objectives which are friendly; become permanently cloaked by a sand storm until attacking, suffer no fall damage in your lofty keep or navigate lava pools and lavaducts to escape and confound your foes!
sPvP Stronghold Game Mode:
Or as I like to call it, structured-WvW-light, is a new game mode added to the roster in the Heart of the Mists. Each team must siege and kill the opposing team’s castle lord on this linear 2 way map while defending their own. Players will have to defend bomb carrying Skritt to your enemy’s gates in order to break them down. To gain access to these NPCs and their archer counterparts teams will compete for supply in the centre of the map and be able to steal it from their downed opponents.
New legendary weapons:
New legendary weapons will be added to the game in steps 3 of which can be seen now! They are a new pistol [H.O.P.E], staff [Nevermore] and a new axe [Astralaria] all of which I am drooling over!
For the most in depth look at these weapons and the journey you will have to undertake to get one here is the blog post from the dev’s themselves. [Legendary Weapons]
And so that concludes this mega-post!
I’m looking forward to seeing everyone who is either already in game or returning to see what the fuss is about really soon!