Editorials

Gamescom Screenshots: Characters

As part of the Gamescom press package, ArenaNet released a set of new screenshots for our enjoyment. Due to some technical issues, we’ve been a little slow getting them up ourselves, so if you’ve been looking at our Roundups you’ll probably have already seen them. But you’ll probably have seen them in the form of dozens of images competing with each other for attention in a gallery.

Rather than doing that, I figured I’d try releasing a few at a time from the categories ArenaNet has provided, with some short discussion of each and opening up discussion to the floor regarding each set of images.

First up: Characters!

Our opening shot is of an Asura guardian, wearing the winged helm associated with the Seraph. Ironic as it is, the combination of a spear-like staff and the visual effect of the Aegis boon means this is probably the closest we’ll see to the classical image of the ceremonial guard with a polearm in one hand and a shield in the other.

Our next shot shows two humans (or norn – they can be hard to tell apart without a reference) in a dismal environment. Their drab attire matches the environment, with each possibly being representatives of adventuring professions – although the woman might be a scholar and the charr a soldier with brown-dyed armour.

For our third, we have a closer look at the hooded and masked woman from the previous shot. Her brief overskirt suggests that, if seperately dyeable, it might be possible to cut a significantly more flamboyant figure with this armour set. The table behind her is festooned with candles and books, suggesting that this is a place of scholarship or ritual.

Next, we have a female human (or norn?) engineer with pistol, shield, and what appears to be a long leather coat. The background appears to be the edge of Ascalonian ruins at night… likely a dangerous place to be. This is reinforced by the angle of her pistol, likely recovering from teh recoil of an earlier shot, with the wisp in the upper right corner being the smoke left over from the firing… or some free-floating three-dimensional magical sigil.

Finally, we have a male engineer, rifle held point downwards in a pose that avoids suggesting immediate threat, but the ability to quickly bring his weapon to bear if need be. The standing stones around him raise interesting questions… Are they natural, or is this a site of some past significance? Behind the stone on the right is what appears to be a carved obelisk, suggesting the latter – but that may not be related to the stones except by proximity.

So, what are your thoughts on these images? Do you see any other details that should be commented on? And if you’ve been lucky enough to get some demo time, have you come across any of the environments depicted here – and if so, can you comment on their significance?

Next up, we’ll be looking at the images in the ‘Combat’ section.

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