Guild Wars 2 RTS

Thanks to Naoroji at Guild Wars 2 Guru we received a translation from an interview from a Dutch magazine regarding Guild Wars 2.  There are a lot of good tidbits from Naoroji’s post on racial abilities and underwater exploration, but the best cut is on World PvP.

World PvP on paper sounds like some marriage between Mythic’s RvR and World of Warcraft’s Alterac Valley.  It is supposed to be three or more servers fighting against one another for some amount of time (a week, two weeks, etc.) then the servers would gain new opposition.  Three is the magic number, eh, Syncaine?  Anyway the system goes far beyond the capture system found in Warhammer Online by adding RTS elements to the mix similar to what Alterac Valley has.  The article says:

The World PvP Maps bear a resemblance to RTS-maps and give you a chance to play different roles. You can conquer stone mines, which will then deliver stone by caravan to your catapults, you can attack and cut off caravans of the enemy, you can operate as a scout and inform the rest of hostile movement, you can man watchtowers and defend, or you can just run up to a lost PvP’er and teach him a lesson. All these actions will earn you experience.

This is going to be an interesting, very complex system, and not without possible pitfalls.  Alterac Valley is persistent in a sense, but it has a player cap.  World PvP has no player cap, and numbers of 300 v. 200 have been flung around by ArenaNet.  The need for warm bodies can definitely become a problem.  Intricate systems designed to be full of players are usually a lot of fun, but when the population fizzles either to go to sleep or go play Diablo III then the complexity is really put to the test.  Then there is the zerg issue where large numbers of players simply smash through any balanced complexity.  A complex Ouroboros fight of hitting mines, supply lines, watchtowers, then keeps is still a boring  prospect.  On top of that there is inefficient PUG communication, griefing possibilities, and balancing to consider.

I have high hopes for this type of gameplay where we become the little RTS minions, only in an MMO instead of an FPS.  There are a lot of pitfalls, and I hope that ArenaNet jumps across them with Atari-like ease.  Guild Wars 2 World PvP will already have a leg up over the other RvR-esque competition because it will lack a subscription cost-of-entry.

–Ravious
make the other bastard die for his

9 thoughts on “Guild Wars 2 RTS”

  1. 3+ if you are going to lock people into factions, yes.

    The original Alterac Valley was a great battleground that most probably never REALLY saw. Those stories of 4-5 hour matches show that sadly too many of those instances became mindless zerg vs zerg battles, when AV offered so much more.

    Before or after raiding, our guild would mass-queue for AV and actually coordinate it using the chat channel. At first it was difficult to get all the randoms to go where you want them, but after a few crushing victories it was funny to watch as random people told others to shut it and listen to the Forsaken (my guild) guys if we want to win. A week or so of that and we started seeing “The Forsaken guys are here, we are going to win if we just listen”. Coordinating the cavalry NPC charge with a player charge, summoning the boss NPC at the right time, allowing the other side to believe they are pushing to get them off a flag, all that made AV a lot of fun, especially when you got two competent leaders on both sides trying to out-duel each other and direct the masses.

    Then of course all that was removed because Joe Casual could not watch TV and still get his shiny from AV at the same time, and they removed all the actual strategy from it. The last time I saw AV it was a great ‘who can pound the NPC first’ race, with actual PvP being discouraged. Got to love patches that ‘polish’ the average user experience.

    1. I loved AV so much… I still know _every_inch_ of it, though I haven’t played WoW in some time. I must have (really) played over a thousand matches in it starting at launch and unfortunately some of the good mechanics in the original AV were lost entirely. Summoning the Alliance boss never really worked right, either.

      That aside I did love AV, and GW2 sounds so far like what I wish AV always could have been.

  2. I am not sure if this is a good thing.

    So I am on server “X”. Where are my friends? Some on X, too, others on Y, Z? Are we only separated for pvp, or do we play on different servers/worlds?

    The more I hear about GW2 the more I wonder what we will get in the end…^^

    1. They claim “servers” will be more like neighborhoods with “easy” moving. So while you are in the persistent world you will keep meeting up with the same thousand or so people, and your friends/guilds/alliances can all get on one server. So for World PvP and PvE you will be playing with your server, and in World PvP and GvG you will be playing against other servers possibly.

  3. Hm…I hope Anet doesn’t screw this up. I’m looking forward to guildwars 2 but after hearing this piece of information it seems that guildwars 2 is putting itself up with too many challenges too early.

    Just to clarify, are ‘servers’ just like districts from guild wars? Or are they completely different?

  4. You can compare the ‘servers’ to GW1’s ‘districts’, indeed. However, instead of just one town in a district (like GW1), the whole world’ll be in there.

    It’ll probably be as easy as clicking on a dropdown menu, choosing your ‘server’ and WHAM, you’re there, ready to fight with your friends/guildies/w/e.

  5. Well the easy fix for the potential lack of PC’s is to balance the game to a specific size with NPC’s that fight on either side to fill the gaps. That way they can maintain a large enough fighting force on either side of the conflict. That said some kind of player cap to allow the combat to sit always around the same size would be needed also, that way if a player wants in an NPC that’s not engaged with a PC can vanish from the playing field to be replaced by a real PC, on the respective side. If their are to many PC’s having a player cue to get into the combat cycle could be used. or multiple instances of the same combat sequence?

    That said if they have multiple zones that can be contested like this that could manage larger groups so not everyone’s going to be trying to get into the same combat zone. It’s an interesting tidbit, what actually comes of it we will see, My hopes are high for GW2, but I’ve learned to just wait it out with games lately. Can’t trust any of the Game dev’s anymore. :P

    O.

  6. Without factions it’s just the same races and classes grouped together to beat each other up. I don’t see the excitement in this. For me – no faction means nothing close to the epic battles I have read about in fiction and reality throughout my life. The Battle of Helm’s Deep for example? Epic – good vs evil – completely different races.

    The 300? Epic – while all “human” they had such political differences that they were literally different realms.

    Too many mmorpgs either are limited by a 2 faction model (ala W0W) or no faction at all since it’s so much easier to program an mmorpg to have no faction expect to see guild v guild (ala asian grinder mmorpgs) ad naseum.

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