This week in Guild Wars 2

I re-learned an old lesson about playing when I’m too tired. I was working with a party of guild members to get to the start of the Arah dungeon. We took rather a long time to do it, so one of our officers had to call it a night before we started the dungeon. He logged off, and we started looking for another player to fill the open spot in our party. However, instead of kicking Grey from our party, I accidentally kicked him from the guild (why is that available from the party UI?) … and I wondered why his blank image hadn’t dropped from the party. Then, and only then did I realize the mistake I’d made.

I immediately re-invited him back to the guild and made sure my fellow guild leaders knew what an idiot I was what had happened so someone could explain to Grey why he’d been kicked out of the guild when he got back online. After all that, we went on with a non-guild member to kick Zhaitan’s scaly butt…

Since then, every time I log in, Grey and the other officers spend some time joking about my “Golden Boot”.

Thanks again to ArenaNet Community Managers for retweeting last week’s round-up. Still didn’t take our site down! Nyah! Nyah! [Dodge incoming laser of death…]

Official Guild Wars 2 news

  • — Dynamic Leveling Adjustment. “Hello, I’m Isaiah Cartwright, the lead game designer for Guild Wars 2. I’d like to talk today about some changes we made to our dynamic leveling system, which allows players to enjoy the content on any map at any level. We had a few issues with this system that we made adjustments to. When high-level characters played in lower level zones, they were a bit too powerful, so the content was not as challenging as it could be. As a result of this, we also scaled down the rewards a bit too much.”
  • On the official Guild Wars 2 forums, Jason King posted on the topic Getting stuck in the map/seeing map art issues?: “Thank you to everyone who has submitted art bugs in the past! In order to help keep these issues organized, each month we will be creating a new thread for these so that it does not grow to an unmanageable size. Please do not resubmit bugs if you have already posted about them in a previous art thread as we will have already seen them and added them to our bug database. Thank you!” [Raphia: Hat-tip to Tilion for the link.]
  • On the official Guild Wars 2 forums, Mélanie Corolleur posted on the topic Sales on the Gem store between 4th and 10th of February: “Hello All, We will be having a sale in the Gem Store from Monday February 4th through Sunday February 10th PST. The following items will be on sale…”
  • On the official Guild Wars 2 forums, Jonathan Sharp posted on the topic Temple of the Silent Storm test extended: “Hey guys! Just letting you know that our testing of Temple of the Silent Storm (and 1 team vs. 1 team) has been a great success! We’re pleased to announce that we will be extending this test another week, as it has proven to be very popular among players. Watch for more information about this in an official blog post later this week!”
  • On the official Guild Wars 2 forums, Jason King posted on the topic Ranger laurel box giving non-ranger gear: “In order to prevent players from encountering this bug while we work on a fix, we’ve disabled the Ranger chest from being opened for the time being. You will still be able to purchase the chest, but you will not be able to open it (and get weapons that you can’t use). As soon as we have a fix for this bug, we will make the chest accessible again. Thank you for your patience and understanding!”
  • On the official Guild Wars 2 forums, Colin Johanson posted on the topic Upcoming WvW Updates: “I wanted to quickly give an update on where we stand with upcoming releases for WvW to help give a sense of where we’re at, and set expectations for the coming months. We’re in the midst of finalizing our February release, which I know had been discussed as a potentially large month for WvW additions. Because of how broad the WvW game type is, and how large testing for features for this area of the game can be we’re going to hold off on any major WvW updates until March to allow a bit more time to test and polish.”
  • On the official Guild Wars 2 forums, Josh Foreman posted on the topic Jumping Puzzles as Norn and Charr: “Here’s how it worked. I started putting little jumping challenges into my maps several years ago. About a year and a half ago Colin and a couple other designers decided that these were fun enough to turn into some kind of bonus content. About a year ago all the other map artists were told to put a bonus jumping challenge or two in all their maps. We were in our polish phase and these were never intended to be anything more than small diversions for people who like platforming. Not a lot of time was dedicated to this because it was seen almost as Easter Eggs. Just fun little hidden places to discover. As such, JPs were never advertised as primary content, never included in world complete, never required for any story step, and never containing loot that could not be obtained elsewhere.”
  • — Upcoming Changes to PvP Tournaments. “Hello, everybody! I’m Tyler Bearce, one of the game designers on Guild Wars 2. Thank you for participating in Temple of the Silent Storm Week, where PvP paid tournaments were temporarily changed from 8-team, 3-round events, to 2-team, single round matches. So far, the response to this change has been overwhelmingly positive!”
  • — Flame and Frost: The Gathering Storm. “The situation worsens for the citizens of Wayfarer Foothills and Diessa Plateau. Volunteers have eased the burden, but more refugees hobble down from the Shiverpeaks. The storm there gains momentum, but the forces of good are beginning to rally. They’re sending their heroes to defend the land and its peoples. Someone must hold back the gathering storm. In Flame and Frost: The Gathering Storm, the second installment in this four-part series, the stakes are raised, and battles rage, in the foothills of the Shiverpeaks.”
  • On the official Guild Wars 2 forums, Habib Loew posted on the topic Update: No WvW Rating Reset: “We’ve been keeping a very close watch on this week’s matchups and, despite our concerns regarding the recent population shifts, it seems that many of the games are quite competitive. At the same time we’ve been evaluating some possible changes to the math we use to calculate ratings. After examining a number of new methodologies for weighting the outcomes of matches we have found that our existing formulas already do pretty much what we want them to do. Certainly none of the candidates that we tried yielded better results.”
  • YouTube — arenanetofficial: Guild Wars 2 Audio Team Makes a Fireball. “With the help of a custom-built fireball, ArenaNet sound designer Drew Cady records audio for fire sound effects in Guild Wars 2.”
  • On the official Guild Wars 2 forums, Mark Katzbach posted on the topic Updates to the Forum +1 System: “If you read or post on our official forums, you may have noticed the +1 button next to each post. Recently, we have updated this system with more features and visibility for you, the players. You can find the full forum update notes here. This post is to familiarize you all with the new features in our +1 system and how they affect you.”

Recent GuildMag posts

  • You Shall Not Pass – Fighting With One Hand. “The first weapon you receive as a guardian is a simple mace, a cracked piece of metal on a stick that you wield to strike back at the dark forces that threaten your home. Even when you are face-to-face with Zhaitan in mortal combat, a guardian will always want a simple mace, scepter or sword ready for battle. One-handed weapons are your bread and butter, allowing you to mix damage, support, and control abilities with those of the off-handed weapons to match any situation you run into with a single item slot.”

Fan articles and blog posts

  • Under the Pale Tree — Earning your laurels. “So this week, we got a pretty big update in Guild Wars 2. The biggest part of the update was guesting being added in, but there were a lot of other changes – dungeons being changed a bit (no more graveyard rushing!), fractals were updated to prevent disconnects ending a run and so you can do levels higher than you are, and daily achievements were reworked.”
  • On the official Guild Wars 2 forums, Zedex posted on the topic My first impressions of Guild Wars 2: “Hello guys! First of all, my name is Fred and I just came from the game, Star Wars: The Old Republic. I wanted to give you a few impressions of the game. I’m not sure why, but I believe some of you might be interested. If you guys tried Sw:tor, please let me know what you think about your switch.”
  • Reddit — I’m starting a “75% Legendary Support Group” for all those who just need a precursor. “Welcome. Grab a cup of coffee and take a seat. My name is Cain Thornblood and I am a 75%er. (Hi Cain) Well, I guess I proud of what I’ve done so far. I mean, collecting those ectos and lodestones was no easy task. And the clovers! Man, those got me down some days but I made it though and got my 77 (small applause). Most days I still have a pretty good time. I mean I can do CoF like the back of my hand now! (slight laughter). And the new dailies are fun, they keep me busy for a while. But other days… Other days I make the mistake of checking the TP and seeing how much Dusk has gone up.” [Raphia: Hat tip to Hunter for the link.]
  • GuildWars GuideSpot — Welcome to Guild Wars 2 Guide. “Welcome to one of the best webpages that can help you find everything you need to about this great MMORPG called Guild Wars 2. No matter if you are an advanced player, or just a starter, this Guild Wars 2 Intro page can lead you to various pages that are full of information.”
  • Twitter — LopezIRL. “It’s kind of funny how I never saw “Too many resurrectors” until this patch.” [Raphia: We also have a bit of a perverse incentive to delay helping NPCs and even other players before they’re downed.]
  • Under the Pale Tree — The Economics of Legendaries. “Lately a lot of things have got me thinking about economics. The first of which is that in real world USA, it’s tax season, and I can’t leave my house or watch 20 minutes of TV without being reminded that I have some paperwork to do. But this recent Guild Wars 2 patch brought it around to my gaming life in a new way.”
  • Massively — One Shots: 100% Guild Wars 2. “Yes, we know that Guild Wars 2 is a gorgeous and popular game. Why do we know this? Because week after week, One Shots has been swamped with GW2 submissions, far outstripping almost every other game submission put together. That’s not a bad thing, as I agree that it’s a lovely title that has an immense amount of eye candy. It just makes it difficult when I’m limiting One Shots to one-picture-per-game-per-column.”
  • The Egg Baron — Laurels and Daily Achievements. “Today I would like to quickly go over the new Laurel system and what it offers to the players. I can not talk about the Laurel system without getting into the new daily achievements so I will also discuss those. I will also provide my thoughts on these new systems and how I think they will impact the game.”
  • Black Lions Profit — Question: Any tips on a good market area for a new trader? “Today I received an email from one of our readers asking for a tip on what markets they could invest in as a new trader.”
  • Guild Wars 2 Trading Post — What’s the Secret to Making Gold? “So what is the secret to making gold in Guild Wars 2? It’s all about your attitude. No, I’m not trying to dodge the question: What’s the Secret to Making Gold? I’m actually giving you an honest answer that applies to the rest of your life as well. If you’ve ever dedicated yourself to a hobby or job, you’ll know that having a positive, aggressive attitude does wonders for making you better at whatever it is you’re doing.”
  • The Egg Baron — This week in Guild Wars 2. “Every week on Friday, GuildMag rounds up all the community articles into one big post on their site. Here on my blog I like to pick out my favourite articles of the week to share with you and add in a couple of my own links. This week had a lot of information about the latest patch released on January 28th but there were also a steady stream of articles on other topics.”
  • Malefic Incantations — Flame and Frost Impressions. “This week marks the release of Guild Wars 2′s first major update of the year, Flame and Frost: Prelude, which promises to lay the groundwork for bigger updates throughout the first half of the year. Between both GW1 and GW2 ArenaNet has quite the reputation to live up to when it comes to major patches–arguably, one they have betrayed once already. As a patch that’s supposed to set the stage for what’s to come, the long-term implications of Flame and Frost are pretty important. Does it follow through on its promises? Read on for my take on the new content and features.”
  • Of Course I’ll Play It — Victory at Last. “So it’s been only, what, six months now since the game has released, and just last night I finally finished my personal story with one of my characters. I gathered four brave companions.. okay two brave companions and two complete strangers, but still, five of us ventured into the lost city of Arah, and took the fight to Zhaitan himself. The ensuing experience was both extraordinarily gratifying while at the same time somewhat disappointing.”
  • The Centaur’s Satchel — It’s ALIIIIIVEEEE! “I’m still here. I’ve just been busy…playing. Heh. I had to planned to write a ton but school tends to suck the life out of me (and all my writing motivation). Also, I’m completely addicted to Guild Wars 2. The game is phenomenal. It does have bugs and there are things I don’t agree with or things that could be improved, but overall, I feel like this game is absolutely fantastic. Bugs and all. It’s the best MMO I have ever played.”
  • Guild Wars 2 Trading Post — Are you over looking the obvious? “Whenever I’m solving a bug in computer code, I tend to hit walls where I say something like “This has to work, why isn’t this working?” The same verbiage is said by people who are failing to make gold on the trading post. “This has to sell, why isn’t it selling?””
  • Inventory Full — A Sunday Morning Stroll Through Orr. “Since Monday’s update I’ve been meaning to take a trip down to Orr. I hear it got a makeover. Adjusted population density, improved loot, reduced crowd-control abilities and new animations for the Risen, the works. Probably trimmed Zhaitan’s claws while they were about it, keep the old boy looking fresh.”
  • Why I GameGW2: The City in the Sea – Verse 1. “I am liking the laurels and the new varied dailies. It has given me a reason to log in every day, and also guilt-free logging off after an hour or two once the daily is done. I am liking the Living Story (so far). It gives me a reason to go back to my race hometown to check in with the herald and makes things more immersive thereby. (I know Lion’s Arch has ‘em too, but nah…) It moves at a less hectic pace than one day events, so I don’t feel like I’m going to miss anything if I forget to log in for a day or two.” [Raphia: Hat-tip to Bhagpuss of Inventory Full for the link.]
  • Why I GameGW2: The City in the Sea – Verse 2. “This one’s for Syl, cos she loves this stuff. Sorry it took this long to do another. I was waiting to make sure I didn’t spoil Orr for slower levelers. Really! Honest! *hem*
    Verse 3 and 4 tomorrow. Y’all must be pictured out by now.”
  • Why I GameGW2: The City in the Sea – Verse 3.
  • Why I GameGW2: The City in the Sea – Verse 4 (and Final). “Because Orr is Orr-some. And Poe is da Poe-t. P.S. If you’re reading this in a reader which doesn’t show the Featured Image of each post, do check them out if you liked what you saw. Those were my last four chances to put in what looked great to me but didn’t quite fit the poem.”
  • Nerdy Bookahs — Diessa Plateau in Ascalon. “Diessa Plateau is a typical charr region. There are lots of trees and the region is full of bright autumn colours. Then there’s the ruins that are typical for the regions of Ascalon. They remind the travellers that at some point, humans were living here. And in between, there’s newly built charr houses, barracks, and towers. They have a very distinct architecture with lots of shiny metal. Oddly enough, I do not think they look like out of place at all. Even with the pretty nature, they buildings fit into the scenery. Some of their buildings have a foundation of stone that comes out of the ground seamlessly.”
  • Healing the masses — Rise of the Quaggan. “Has any else noticed a large part percentage of players sporting these ridiculous yet adorable backpacks.”
  • Distilled Willpower — The Lazy Legendary Guide – Part 2 – Gift of Exploration. “Your Gift of Exploration is, in my experience, the part of the legendary process which is most enjoyable. It involves exploring the world, doing all the heart quests, catching all the skill points, viewing all the vistas and uncovering all the waypoints and points of interest across the entire map. It is the one part of the legendary process which you will probably have completed about 50% by the time you’re even considering starting going for a the much longer term legendary goal. It is also one of the only strictly plus-wealth parts of the legendary process (meaning you can’t pay anyone in-game to do it for you, you can only make money doing it yourself).”
  • Kill Ten Rats — Beautiful Things. “I’ve always been enamored by the Orr zones in Guild Wars 2. It portrays the whole “epic civilization that was lost
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