Guild Wars 2 Fanday

A couple weeks ago ArenaNet contacted me and 14 other lucky fans for a huge event. We were all invited out to Seattle to visit the new ArenaNet office on June 24! For this humble blogger, this was seriously a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I was also extremely lucky because every other weekend in June had already been filled.

Thursday will be travel days for most of us, with the fans from Europe possibly starting earlier. That night we will have a meet’n’greet dinner with the Community Team. Friday, we head to the brand new studio! ArenaNet has filled the day with tons of activities, most of which they won’t tell us so as not to spoil any surprises. We will get to play a Guild Wars 2 demo (with no NDA, but no video), and developers are taking time out of their busy schedule to join in on the fun.

I will tweet and blog as much as possible, but expect most in-depth recaps the next week. The hashtag #GW2Fanday on Twitter will be our codeword for on-the-fly commentary. NeoNugget, from Guild Wars 2 Guru, has an updated list of the attendees with site and Twitter account listings.

I have plenty of questions, and on my 5 hour flight, I will probably come up with dozens more. Still, feel free to comment below on anything you would like me to ask or try and check out in the demo.


44 thoughts on “Guild Wars 2 Fanday”

  1. Awesome! Looking forward to reading what you dig up while you’re there.

    I’d be interested in your overall impressions and if you can find out just how much world they will have upon release. The explorer in me is hoping for a lot of depth.

  2. First: GRATS! You deserve it and it’s also a boon for KTR readers that you were picked. Looking forward to your report.

    * I don’t know if you will run a “dungeon” or fight in an “event” and you probably don’t know it yet either. Just remember what you did and tell us how you run a dungeon without a healer and tank. Will it be refreshing without a healer or maybe too easy because it’s tuned to work without one, or will there be a hidden need for at least one “Guardian” to be Healer/Tank?

    * You could ask about this automatic de-levelling/downscaling when you enter a low level zone with a high level char. How will it affect the char, stats and the items for instance?

    * Try to get a feel for all classes so that you can describe what they do and how they feel. I.e. how plays a Necro or about the difference between Guardian and Warrior. Not the theory that everyone can tell who reads the Wiki or blog. More like a Guardian opens with this attack and then does this, while playing a Warrior you do it rather like that.

    * How does the world “feel” to you and stuff like that.

    Have fun and just try to test as much as possible.

    1. I would love to run a dungeon, and with 15 people, seems like a nice even number to do just that! Trying out the engineer would also be nice if that profession is available. (I highly doubt they would let us try out the 8th profession before an official reveal.)

  3. Have a nice trip, can’t wait to read about it!

    I’d like to know anything about the ranger’s greatsword skills.

    Some pictures of art they have on walls would also be appreciated. :)

  4. dear sir have fun! i can only dream of this kind of opportunity.

    Ask them lots of Nuts and Bolts questions and report back Asap. Cause we unfortunate souls must feed of the info you are bringing us :P

  5. It’s outstanding that you were included in this, and I’m really looking forward to reading your impressions of the visit and the game.

    Just a reminder for while you’re playing the demo… You’ve got to move it, move it… this ain’t WoW… standing still is fine if you’re just taking in an incredible vista but, if you’re the focus of attacks and taking damage you’ve got to MOVE. (Sorry, just my number 1 peeve about what I’ve seen in demo videos so far.)

  6. Much envy, sir!

    Have an awesome time (I’m sure you will) and tweet plenty, if you can.

    My top tips for looking leet: ^_^

    1a. Heal!
    A good time to heal is when you’ve lost 50% of your health – <10% is not so good a time…

    1b. You can usually move while you are healing – this is of course also conducive to the goal of not dying.
    Only exceptions: Shelter & Ether Renewal – don't move during those or you'll abort!

    1c. If you play an engineer and are given a heal other than Elixir H, your self-heal will be on your tool belt (F1-4); pressing 6 will just deploy/switch to support effects!

    2. Set your slot 1 skill to auto-attack, pronto.
    Number 1 cause of demo players looking shabby/dying; jogging around in combat expecting foes to stop pummelling them/die when their own damage output is minimal/non-existent.

    3. If you're playing a ranged character (like the engineer), know where your snare is and watch the little numbers below your skills go from red to white – that means you're within range.

    4. Don't stop to revive downed allies when you can simply kill their foe to rally them.
    Never stop to revive ranger pets mid-battle!

    1. Thanks, Vulturion. I used your list last time too at PAX East. I got “keep moving” well under my belt since I heavily play FPS and used to play Vindictus. :)

  7. Heey
    can u plz check out the elementalist and tell some stuff about it and how nice it plays =P


    1. I’ll try. I don’t know how much time they are going to let us play. I think engineer will be playable (per Bobby Stein’s latest tweet), and I played thief pretty heavily last time. I would love to see how both are progressing.

      We’ll see though because a water/earth ele seems a lot of fun if we go in to a dungeon or something. :)

      1. I second Vince’s request, especially because of what Jon Peters told Tap-Repeatedly on 6/10 about “radical” changes to the class. Earth Attunement might still be unavailable, but if there’s anything you can tell us about the recent changes, I and surely a lot of people would be grateful!

  8. So jealous… But you deserve it (as one of the better bloggers out there).
    One question I’m dying to have answered is about the armor-like HoM rewards. The gauntlets of Balthazar, Dwayna’s bracers, Baroque Mask, etc. Are these armor peices which will be restricted to certain profs based on light/medium/heavy, or are they “town clothes” that any prof can wear?
    If you can find out how town clothes work that would also be awesome. Is it like LotRO’s cosmetic outfits? Any info you can find out and pass along for this would be greatly appreciated!
    Thanks in advance.

  9. I would like to know how much the personal story, of mid to high level characters, interacts with each of us. Is it just totally optional and avoidable? Is it unavoidable? Or is it somewhere in between? I don’t know if gagung that information would be possible in such a short amount of time, but hopefully you can get somewhat of an idea.

    Thanks and congrats!!

  10. I would enjoy hearing more about the somewhat new and unexplored features:

    “How many underwater weapons are there?”

    “What are all the underwater weapons?” (We already know staff and scepter are in, judging by Quaggan weaponry)

    “What’s the deepest our characters will be going underwater?”

    “After the Sylvari are revealed, will you be adding any skill videos to the professions’ pages to incorporate the Sylvari?”

    “We have recently seen images of airships. Can you comment on these?” (

    “Does each ‘home map’ in WvW have a unique style/theme, or are all 3 home maps uniform in each battlefield map?”

    “We were originally shown a “canthatown” district of Divinity’s Reach, which was later replaced by the Great Collapse. What led you to make this decision?”

    “Will there be a dungeon entirely underwater?” (My guess is yes, so put this lower on your priority list, seeing as how it will almost obviously be yes anyway)

    “In the world map we see a harbor between the front gate of Divinity’s Reach and Dwayna’s Plaza. While not explorable during the demo, will we be able to enter it in the final release?”

    That’s all I got for now. :) Thank you very much!

  11. Hey Ravious congratulations for getting the invite. I truly hope that you have a great experience there and enjoy yourself ridiculously. With that being said I have a few humble questions you could possibly add to your (probably massive) list. Thanks if you consider these below!

    If you play a thief I would love to know…
    -What changes they have possibly made? If you can recognize any that you notice of course :P

    If you play an engineer…
    -Some of the personal story elements? Maybe try and note down the professions storyline questions :P

    -How many skills you get for each backpack. Like if the grenade pack has a 1-5 skill for each type of grenade or if it is random. That type of thing :P

    Oh and last question…

    -Do the dungeons have different end bosses depending on your choices? Or is it the same but you just may take different ways to get there?

    You should take mental videos of everything, there is no restriction against that. I’d say just time travel into the future, get some sort of mental video recording implant and come back. They will never know.

    Ravious, you are awesome. Oh and good luck, may the force be with you and all that jazz.

  12. Not to sound boring but i would love to get some info on the tech side of things. i.e. system requirements and more importantly will the game be SLI/crossfire compatible. I plan on building a new system soon and would love a vague idea of what to shoot for.

  13. I like to know how many character slots are there per account and the system requirements of the game and when does open beta starts.

  14. Oh oh oh.. can you ask them….

    How come I wasn’t invited? *pout

  15. I want you to sneak into an office, hack into their internal system, and find out what their current latest deadline is. Or at least ask it.

    1. Bring a gun,
      take Mike O’Brien hostage,
      demand game release immediately.

      alternatively, replace “gun” with “candy”, and “demand” with “ask nicely”

      1. And I was just about to comment with “Whatever you do, don’t ask them when it’s coming out!!”

        They might spook or something :P

  16. Any information they can give about consumables would be really nice, as in GW1 they had a big (and in my opinion, negative) impact on the game.

    Thanks and I hope you have fun there.

  17. First off, congrats!! looking forward to hearing about your experiences, and very jealous of the opportunity >.>

    The main question I have atm is what changes happened to the necromancer death shroud, so if you or another fan plays one please try to remember how it works :PPP

  18. I have a few questions that would be awesome if you could ask:

    1. What is the name of the DSD, the community is dying to know.

    2. When can we expect an ED blog post, so little is known about them.

    3. Anything else lore related.

  19. Has Anet considered and/or is Anet considering other games within the Guild Wars universe such as browser games, smartphone/tablet games, board games, a TCG, a PnP RPG or even full priced video games of a genre other than online roleplaying?

  20. Congrats lucky bugger! I would love to know more about home instance and HOM, if you get to go there.

  21. If you would be so kind to ask. Maybe making this more concise if you can

    Guild Wars 2 has decided to have a more action oriented combat system and have an inherit dodge-roll ability for every character. Why are there so many ways of removing the dodge-roll ability in addition to it’s high energy cost? Immobilize, Cripple, Chilled, Fear, Knockdown, Stun and I suppose Launch as well all temporarily prevent you from dodge-rolling were all these options needed because of hte power of dodge-rolling?

    1. It’s not just dodge-rolling though, it’s a very mobile combat system all around. Guardians have Flashing Blade, thieves dance in and out of combat, warriors get their jumpy thing, etc.

      So I will try and bring it up, but I think all those ways to remove mobility are there because mobility is so key.

  22. I’d kill for some underwater gameplay information.

    Good luck Rav and I hope ya enjoy it as much as we’ll enjoy your blogging :)

  23. Another question I am eagerly awaiting a good answer to: Can you glean any solid info on anticipated system reqs to run at a decent pace??? I am planning an upgrade around GW2 and I want to know what my mid tier spec is. For example, could I expect to run this on an M14x smoothly? Thanks so much if you get a chance to inquire!

  24. Hey! First of all congratulations, awesome opportunity. The question that has been on my mind for a while is if I will be able to play with all my friends together. Will we be able to change servers freely, restricted or not at all? I know that this comes into conflict with the reward concept in pvp. Everyone would just move to the server that won. How are they planning to handle this? Thanks in advance and happy hunting ;)

  25. If you get a chance to see some of the developers playing (hoping you will), can you tell us how naturally they seem to move/position themselves. Obviously they’ll have been playing quite a while now, and they’ll be far better at the combat style than any of us, so just how different is their playstyle to that of the shakycams we’ve been seeing?

    Guessing it will be pretty different (and that they will actually move), but what are going to be the major areas for new players to focus on aside from positioning?

    How long are they taking to position ground-targeted spells, for example, and how often do they change weapons/attunements mid-fight.

    Also, how long is the cool-down after attacking/receiving damage before you are deemed to be “out of combat” and can change skills/traits etc.?

  26. Ravious, it would be very nice if you asked something about the synergy between the Ranger and the pet. In some interview I read that they were not happy with the current state of the ranger.

    As a Ranger player I am concerned about what changes are they going to made. If you check that out on the demo, that would be awesome!

    Thanks and best regards.

  27. Seconded on system requirements and underwater combat info if there’s any to be had.

    Congrats on the opportunity Ravious, you write some insightful stuff and I’m sure you’ll be able to make the most of this!

    1. …and this morning I find GW2 updates on dungeons and underwater combat. Why, thank you ArenaNet!
      Twitter comments from #GW2Fanday are very enthusiastic, it’s excellent to hear!

  28. I’d like to know the weapon range of pistols, rifles, shortbows and longbows. Which is shorter, which is longer? Do the range change with the profession?

  29. I would love to learn more about racial abilities, like the norn’s shapeshift, and how they work in game(ie are they utility skills, can some be learned, what kinds does each race have atm)

    questions on lore would help too, will there be books a la wow or other similar places for us to learn the past stories of the world for those that never played any gw1 or like some of us played years ago and could use a refresher(plus there is all that has been added since i last played, i dove in a few weeks back and was quickly overwhelmed just trying to go over what i had played let alone all the new)

    I know we can jump this time around, but how about mounts? and if there are mounts are there any race minigames? or battle games(golem wars anyone?)

    Does the gameworld support flying? either currently or built that if they would ever want to add it they could without requiring the entire world to be rebuilt like WoW had to.

    collectables? pets vanity or otherwise. game pieces(like a CCG or chess/stratego game that you find and build your deck/pieces) home instance decorations

    Expanding on that would love to see a game within the game that has rules variants depending on what city/racial area you are in(personally i would vote for a chess/statego type game as the disposition of the pieces and how many of each you can use could depend entirely on the races views ie in charr lands you can’t use ‘magic’ based units or only a few, unless its flame legion lands of course hehe) if they have none planed send them over to me i have a few thoughts from a game i was gonna make back in highschool that could work that i would freely share :)

    i know its a lot and thanks if you can find any of it out

    lastly and i know its a longshot but anymore info you could find on the smartphone/tablet apps they were talking about a while back would be great, even if it is just the devs wish list of features

  30. Some of us will need to take time off of work for the beta and release. Will they give us enough lead time so we can hoard precious leave days for glorious blowout binges?

  31. I loved this post, it confirms so much of what I’m hoping for in GW2. finally, more dynamic and cooperative play, pick’up fun and flexibility – rather than sitting around putting group setups together and only ever performing the same role and rotation. ‘whole’ characters, not a fifth or sixth of a whole.

    Thanks for the detailed review!!

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