“We are all pilots; every one of us is a rival and a friend.” — Sunless the Reaper, Beetle Boss
With the release of the roller beetle mount came the dawn of racing guilds. On the EU megaservers, the largest of these guilds is known as the Beetle League Racing Team [RACE], so if you’re into beetle racing or looking to get started then this guild could be just what you’re after. To find out more about [RACE] I interviewed several of its key members: Moonotaur, an officer who helps manage the guild; Hybbes, a league pilot who tests various race tracks; and Sunless the Reaper, the guild leader — a rank also known as Beetle Boss.
Sunless created [RACE] the day the roller beetle came out after participating in a player-organised race in Dredgehaunt Cliffs. Regarding that day, Sunless said, “The challenge and the fun I had gave me an idea: why don’t I start a guild for fellow racers so we can share the circuits we build and compete with others? I just wanted to share the fun I experienced racing on the new mount with everyone else.”
As [RACE] steadily increased in popularity on the EU servers they started to absorb smaller racing guilds into their set-up. One of these was Moonotaur’s previous guild. When they merged under [RACE], Sunless happily allowed Moonotaur and the other co-leaders to join as admins since they had experience running a guild.
From my discussions with members of [RACE], I would describe the guild’s atmosphere as one that is creative and friendly, but with a dash of competitive rivalry. As of yet, there is no representation requirement or formalised recruitment process. If you want to join, just ask any of the contacts in the breakout box above! Many of the pilots discovered the guild by finding their races through LFG or map chat. I, myself, came to know about them through their contributions on reddit.
The members of the Beetle League Racing Team have made multiple original races which they’ve shared with the Guild Wars 2 community via reddit. According to Moonotaur, most of the maps in Tyria can accommodate a good race; and in regards to the maps he doesn’t think will be fun (“Not Orr… just no.”)… well, Sunless can’t say no to a challenge, and he insists on testing his guildmates as well (“Yes, Orr too!”).
The main objective of the Beetle League Racing Team is to have fun with the races and to enjoy the challenge. This means making races for all levels of ‘pilots’ from beginner-friendly races around Queensdale to death-defying runs through Dragon Stand. Whatever your skill level is on the roller beetle, you’ll find your perfect challenge with these racers.
Crafting a race is a challenge in itself. You have to check how easy it is to reach and maintain the beetle’s top speed and find spots for those perfect jumps and water skips. You also don’t want any unforeseen dynamic events blocking what was previously a perfectly good route. It’s a good thing then that [RACE] has league pilots, such as Hybbes, who check for these things. The races made by the guild members and other players around the world are thoroughly tested before they’re used for guild events.
As a plus, many of the guild’s races are compatible with the TacO add-on, which means that you can see the starting line, the gates and the finish line if you want to practice on your own without memorising the whole track. For those who don’t know, TacO is a Guild Wars 2 overlay which lets you view helpful information on screen. Its core experience includes jumping puzzle routes, event timers and more, and it also allows the sharing of custom markers made by users — such as those made by [RACE].
There are also special events on the horizon on top of their spontaneous races. On the 25th and 26th of August 2018, the Beetle League Racing Team held their inaugural tournament with free entry and some very expensive prizes. Before the tournament, three tracks were revealed while two were kept secret for the semi-final and final rounds. The result was a tense finale for participants and spectators alike.
At the end of the two day event, the winners from a pool of thirty participants were as follows:
|2||Zulul Scout||The Chosen|
|4||Kemsir Two||The Energizer|
|6||Dakotam Halfhorn||Asef’s Brew|
Between tournaments, these talented guildies are always looking for the next challenge. On the 16th of October 2018, the Shadow of the Mad King returned to Tyria with a brand new activity to pique the interest of beetle enthusiasts: the Mad King’s Raceway. This was a racetrack implemented by ArenaNet on the already-existing Reaper Rumble map, and while it can be completed with any mount, the high speed achievement associated with it meant that it was made with the beetle in mind.Congratulations to the winners and good luck to the pilots taking part in future tournaments. Even if you decide to not join the guild, you are still welcome to join such events.
While there were many who bemoaned the difficulty of the race on reddit, the members of the Beetle League Racing Team thrived. Members Garfried and Neosam made it into the top ten in the leaderboards, while their fellow guildmate, Ayasam, went on to hold first place! It should be noted that Ayasam did this with clever manipulation of the griffon while the other two drifted on their beetles.
This love for challenge is echoed by their proud leader, Sunless the Reaper:
“People should join us because we offer them new challenges. We took a new feature ArenaNet gave us and made the most out of it. Joining us is simple. If you want to have fun with crazy people who love to go fast and furious, ask any member of [RACE] for an invite. You’ll be in.”
Thank you to everyone from [RACE] who took part in the interview and contributed screenshots. Enjoy the race!