One thing that absolutely amazes me is how much the ArenaNet devs are communicating on the quagmire that is the Guild Wars 2 beta forums. For those with beta access here are the forums as account credentials are required to view the forums. Much of it was just reinforcing constructive feedback, but many times a developer went out of their way to discuss the issues. A sampling of some of the responses are below:
In one thread entitled Cliche, Cheesy Script & Boring Story, Bobby Stein writing team lead responds to some criticism mostly aimed at the starting norn personal story:
We can certainly examine the norn content and learn from our mistakes, whether or not we have the time and resources to make radical changes before ship. Changing the flow of a story involves almost every department in the studio, from design and writing to programming, art and animation. Simple dialogue edits and re-recording VO impacts cinematic conversations, so we can sometimes justify going back into the booth to change story elements but it’s more difficult to overhaul plot, and it also means more work for the animators.
He later responds that they listen to all feedback, even painful feedback because it can’t be ignored.
This is the one shatter that is still looking for a home. We have experimented with other ideas but none of them have stuck, thus far. I think part of the problem is confusion where in PvP the attack rate make confusion very powerful, but creature attack rate in PvE renders it almost useless. This is one case where we will absolutely split the balance between PvE and PvP to help mitigate this problem. We are also still looking at alternatives for that shatter to do something different so suggestions welcome.
Even something small like the amount of hostile fauna in World vs. World gets a response from Mike Ferguson:
Yeah, a lot of the objective areas of the home maps are infested with too many furry annoyances (and feathery ones too). I’ll deal with them before we ship.
Finally for those interested in the ship date for Guild Wars 2, Mark Katzbach has the answer:
As we have stated previously, Guild Wars 2 will be released when it’s ready.
If you have access to the Guild Wars 2 forums, they can be a gold mine for developer interaction. I hope that ArenaNet is not only going to have it be a community forum, but getting and receiving direct developer feedback would make the forums amazing. If you were playing Guild Wars 2 this past weekend be sure to leave feedback soon; the bug and tech forums have already been closed. I am not sure if these beta forums will remain open until the next event.