Arenanet just posted information on the 29 October 2013 patch. Titled “tower of nightmares,” the patch focuses on Kessex Hills, and the new construction the Krait have been slaving away at for a while. The website only mentions the following: A toxic seed has been sown. Guarded by magic, fed with evil, it grows. Rewards for completing the meta-achievement include a Krait obelisk shard, which allows quartz to be charged in the home instances of characters, and allows a new skill point to be earned. The other rewards is a new, universal healing skill titled “antitoxin spray,” which heals a player and cures them of poison, torment, confusion, and a new condition titled toxin.
We’re one week in to the Halloween festivities—why not celebrate with some new Black Lion Trading Company costumes? Last year’s Witch and Mad King outfits are both making an appearance alongside the brand-new Bloody Prince and Executioner sets. Read on to learn more!
Mad King’s Outfit
Dress up as everyone’s favorite insane monarch for Halloween—or any other day of the year! This outfit comes complete with town clothes, a toy weapon for Costume Brawl, and horribly bad jokes.
New—Bloody Prince’s Outfit
Show your love of darkness—and your undying sense of fashion—with the stylish new Bloody Prince’s Outfit!
Transform into a classic witch or warlock with this Halloween standby, including the ability to fly on an enchanted broom, summon a feline familiar, and set out a cauldron to for your trick-or-treating friends!
The new Executioner’s Outfit will turn you into everyone’s worst nightmare—as will the deadly axe you’ll be carrying into the Costume Brawl!
Mesmers are magical duelists who wield deception as a weapon. Using powerful illusions, clones, and phantasmal magic to confuse and distract their foes, mesmers make sure every fight is balanced in their favor and their opponents can’t believe their eyes.
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Mesmers create illusions, replicas of themselves that attack their foes. Illusions are directed at a specific target and exist as long as that target is alive, or until they are destroyed. Mesmers can maintain up to three illusions at a time. There are two types of illusions: clones and phantasms.
Clones are illusions that look exactly like the caster. The mesmers’ weapons determine which clone skill they will have access to. For example, mesmers equipped with swords have the clone-summoning skill Illusionary Leap, which summons a clone at their location that then jumps forward toward the target.
Phantasms are illusions that look like transparent versions of the caster and carry their own illusionary weapons. Phantasms are more powerful than clones; they have more health and deal more damage. Again, the choice of weaponry determines the type of phantasm-summoning skill that mesmers can use. For example, mesmers equipped with staves can summon a phantasm that attacks its target and deals extra damage for each inflicted condition.
Mesmers can shatter their illusions, destroying them to create a powerful secondary effect. For instance, Mind Wrack detonates all illusions, damaging opponents near them, while Distortion destroys all illusions and distorts the mesmers, allowing them to evade incoming attacks.
Special Spell Types
In addition to creating illusions, mesmers have a range of special skill types at their disposal, such as Mantras and Glamour.
This type of skill has two stages: activation and instant cast. The activation stage takes a relatively long time to cast but is then replaced by an instant-casting skill that mesmers can use in the heat of battle. Mantras are powerful because many can be charged up before battle and then used in the middle of another spell, without interrupting that spell. For example, mesmers wielding a greatsword could use Mantra of Pain, which provides an instant damage boost to their greatsword attacks.
Glamours are enchantments that manipulate the fabric of reality around mesmers. For example, Veil is a wall that bestows invisibility upon any ally that passes through it.
Guardians are devoted fighters who protect their allies and smite their enemies by drawing from the power of their virtues. True guardians are brilliant tacticians and selfless defenders who know when to sacrifice their own defenses to empower their allies to achieve victory.
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Guardians can elect to relinquish the benefits granted by the virtues and extend their protective power to nearby allies. This ability makes the guardian an excellent supportive fighter whether they are leading an assault or defending your party’s flanks.
The fire of Justice burns the enemies of guardians. With Justice, every fifth attack burns their opponents.
With Courage, guardians can shrug off even a mighty blow. Every 40 seconds this virtue is active, guardians are granted Aegis, which blocks the next incoming attack.
Through Resolve, guardians passively regenerate health, allowing them to wade into the most dangerous situation and come out alive.
Guardians have a number of special skill types to choose from. Here are two skill types that typify the guardian:
Guardians can summon spirit weapons to fight at their side for a limited time. Spirit weapons can be commanded to inflict a powerful attack before disappearing. For example, Hammer of Wisdom can be commanded to knock down an enemy before it vanishes.
Guardians use shouts to aid allies or hinder enemies within earshot. Defensive shouts such as “Hold the Line!” grant protection and regeneration to nearby allies.
Recently ArenaNet spent some time discussing the concept of collaborative development with some of the community on rolling out a new process in which over a set time period they can discuss design philosophies behind the main components of Guild Wars 2. Today design director Chris Whitesideannounced the first part of the plan: to list the top three sections of this area of the game that you would like to discuss:
For example for PVE your list might be:
1: Living World
3: Ascended items
ArenaNet will choose the number 1 topic in each area after a couple of days and then create the threads within the specific areas for players to discuss, brainstorm and share opinions on. If you have the topics that wanna discuss, head for the topic page to share your idea!
There will be a new World versus World (WvW) map. As many players will know it’s incredibly frustrating to want to participate in WvW only to have to wait upwards of twenty or thirty minutes before you get in. Luckily, the new map will change all that.
Called the Edge of the Mists, the map is designed as an overflow to ensure that players can participate in WvW while they’re waiting in the queue. Sadly (though I’ll expand on this shortly) the new WvW map won’t contribute towards your servers “score” but you will undertake a variety of typical WvW activities and some unique to that borderland.
What makes ArenaNets approach to this borderlands incredibly exciting is the fact that they’re opening it up, as a “beta” map, to the Guild Wars 2 community and more specifically – guilds in the community. Players and guilds will be able to sign up to be part of the initiative. Fundamentally, ArenaNet need thousands of willing play testers.
As is the game type, ArenaNet need to ensure that enough players login to the Edge of the Mists in order to fully test the three-way system that World versus World offers. Taking their pick of specific guilds who register (and no doubt expanding the numbers rapidly) ArenaNet are going to invite guilds to run tests of this new borderland with testing likely to start in early November.
Surprisingly, there isn’t going to be an NDA on this new borderland making this one of the first publicly collaborative endeavours that ArenaNet have done.
In terms of the map itself (with much of this still subject to change) it will be much quicker than the existing borderlands. Resetting after around 24 hours, primarily based on the fact there will be multiple copies of the borderland, it creates things simple by having it on a short life-span. When it comes to the visuals, it’s all about floating islands above the battlegrounds. Think Avatar with various themes: giant snow fortress, ruined temples, desert (bizarre).
Due to the varied landscapes and theme of the Edge of the Mists, ArenaNet are going to try to implement more unique features so they’ll be looking taking objectives through other means. This borderlands is very much seen as an evolution of the core WvW gameplay.
GW2Hub: So the size of the map, how does it compare to EB or other Borderlands?
Jon: Everything I say is subject to change and we’re going to test his map in a pretty open environment, but right now it’s smaller than EB but technically speaking – it plays bigger. The islands, when you’re on them, have concentrated fights but to go from island to island there are bridges and different routes as you work your way down. There are a lot of small skirmishes that are going to happen
GW2Hub: If you don’t earn score, what do you feel the purpose of this map is besides easing the burden on queuing?
Jon: We have some things only in this map that you earn, that you can use in the other borderlands. The other reason is that we’re trying to make this map extraordinarily compelling because we know – especially as we expand into other regions, we want players who want to play WvW even when the borderlands are full. That’s where the unique gameplay will come from. We want situations where we want you to change your tactics at every objective.
GW2Hub: How are you planning on opening this up to guilds?
Chris: We’re going to be promoted it. It’ll be wide open to any players – to anybody, to apply. We will have a registration form where players will have to submit information and we’re looking for one representative from a guild. Based on the application we’ll invite you to the test – invitation only – and will likely cycle through multiple participants and we’ll grow it over time.
Jon: All the guilds we allow in are going to need at least one member capable of compiling feedback. We expect we want to have European and mixed language guilds but they’ll need to be able to compile their feedback into English for this process to work. This definitely isn’t limited though to guilds that are currently playing or are in the top tiers or people who are even playing Guild Wars 2. We would like a variety of all these things.
GW2Hub: Do you think there’s any risk it will be more popular than existing maps?
Jon: We know people care about the score and being top of the ladder and we know there are ways they can care about that, but as soon as we make them care more, more people are going to want to play. Everytime we talk about things we want to improve in WvW we go “ugh, the queues!”. In that way, it really doesn’t matter if it’s more popular because this needs to exist if we’re going to make big improvements to the other borderlands. Some people are going to find this more fun, but some will always want to be part of the scoring. It’ll be a safe mix.
GW2Hub: Can players expect any unique rewards?
Jon: I can almost certainly say yes because if we can’t give you score for doing this map, but we have to give you things you can take out of this map, those are essentially going to be unique rewards. Some will be rewards for your guild, your server or you. I can’t say what all three of those things will be as some of them will be developed during this whole process. We really wanted to do this, not just because we wanted to test the map, but also because we want players to have that sense of investment in what the benefits of this map will be. Real WvW players are going to play this, we’ll see the problems they have and we’ll try to address them before it gets released and impacting the rest of their gameplay.
A new map will be added to the existing WvW maps. Its major feature: Overflows.
Jon Peters, a game designer at ArenaNet, started off by saying that WvW was always something they wanted more players to be involved with, but that anything they do to bolster the population will result in the Achilles’ heel of WvW: the queue. The new map, Edge of the Mists, will help solve this problem by redirecting players until their queue is finished. While it is directed at solving the queue, players will also be able to join the new map directly through the same join map drop-down in the WvW window.
Players will see some of the familiar aspects of WvW on the Edge of the Mists, but there are a number of differences. First is that the Edge of the Mists will not affect the WvW score due to the map’s ability to create overflow versions of itself. It wouldn’t be very much fun to be losing because another world is able to create and fully capture multiple overflow instances of Edge of the Mists. Players, however, will still be able to earn WXP and achievement credit on this new map while playing with familiar WvW gameplay including tower objectives and siege warfare.
The biggest difference is the map itself, which exists above the Eternal Battleground map as a bunch of floating islands. These islands are where most of the fighting and objectives will take place, with bridges allowing players to navigate between, and underneath, islands. Each island has a set theme including a giant snow fortress, ruined jungle temple and a desert bazaar.
The objectives themselves will also see some changes with different wall layouts and NPCs on each tower. Some of the towers will not even have the standard kill the tower lord to take control objective and will include new unique objectives. Since this map won’t directly affect the WvW score (though they are looking at ways for it to contribute to the battles on the other maps) it allows ArenaNet to play around more freely with the default WvW experience. If something on the Edge of the Mists becomes very popular, it is possible it will then be introduced into the Eternal Battleground or Borderland maps.
So when can players get their hands on this new map? November, for some at least. ArenaNet will launch the new map in a beta capacity that they expect will run through early next year. Unlike the beta rollouts for other systems like the LFG tool, this beta will require guilds to sign up and be invited to the beta. There doesn’t appear to be any criteria for guilds who wish to be invited, save that a non-English speaking guild needs to have at least one player able to collect and translate feedback into English so that ArenaNet can easily look over all the feedback. Following their new collaborative outlook, ArenaNet will work with the beta testers to help improve Edge of the Mists before its official launch next year.
Initially, the beta tests will start in limited, concentrated tests such as a single hour time slot where the map is open for players to join. Even after the map is launched, ArenaNet is looking to keep it more focused by having the map reset every day unlike the week long matches on the other WvW maps.
Can’t wait for that official launch next year to see what Edge of the Mists is all about? There will be no NDA on the Edge of the Mists beta, so even if you don’t get in you can see and hear all the action when the beta launches next month.
Come to Kessex Hills!
As some members of our community pointed , something’s been brewing in Kessex Hills… trees chopped down, Krait Witch having left, and a strange field blocking all access. Arenanet just posted the first hint on their Facebook page as to what it may be. Full details will be revealed on 22 October, with the patch releasing on 29 October.
What do you think it is?
They awaken beneath the Pale Tree with knowledge gleaned in their pre-life Dream. These noble beings travel, seeking adventure and discovery. They struggle to balance curiosity with duty, eagerness with chivalry, and warfare with honor. Magic and mystery entwine to shape the future of this race that has so recently appeared.
The sylvari are an enigma. Humanoid in form, plantlike in nature, they are recent arrivals in Tyria who have roamed the world for only 25 years. No one knows why they have suddenly appeared in Tyria, least of all the sylvari themselves, and they seek to discover their purpose in the world.
The sylvari may take a human shape, but a closer look will reveal that their flesh is made of vines and leaves, with foliage and petals in place of hair, and golden sap flowing through their veins.
They are all born of a single parent—the mighty Pale Tree that dominates the Tarnished Coast. The sylvari are bound together by the Dream, a collective state that nurtures and teaches them before they are awakened fully grown, with some knowledge of the world around them. Through the Dream, most sylvari are imbued with an inherent sense of nobility, curiosity, and a need to explore. As each sylvari travels and learns more of the world, that knowledge comes back to the Pale Tree, which shares it with a new generation through the Dream.
The Pale Tree towers over the Tarnished Coast, her looming trunk taller than many mountains. Under the shelter of her lush foliage, the sylvari have made their homes in the Grove, a verdant, multi-level city composed entirely of plants. Some of the sylvari have lived their entire lives beneath the tree, but most choose to wander, to adventure, and to let their memories of the Dream take them where it may. The sylvari are divided into houses, or cycles, determined by the time of day at which they awoke.
The sylvari are a young race, yet they face challenges from within and without. A rare few sylvari have seen the shadows of the Elder Dragons in the Dream, warnings of the danger that menaces the awakened world. As a result, the sylvari perceive the global threat posed by the Elder Dragons more clearly than the other races. Undead minions of Zhaitan crawl from the Sea of Sorrows to despoil sylvari land with alarming frequency.
Yet the minions of the Elder Dragon are only one threat among many. There are sylvari who seek the shadow within the Dream and who explore the darker side of their personalities. These merciless Nightmare Court sylvari seek to add their nightmares to the Pale Tree with each act of cruelty and evil in the hope of leading all sylvari into the darkness.
Your Sylvari Character
When you create your sylvari character, you will choose which time of day you awoke. Sylvari who rise in the Cycle of Dawn tend to be charming and diplomatic. Those of the Cycle of Day are usually bold problem-solvers that meet challenges head-on. The sylvari of the Cycle of Dusk tend to be intelligent and reflective. Those of the Cycle of Night are often secretive loners.
As you advance, you will gain access to a range of potent racial skills that allow you to harness the power of the natural world or call upon the Pale Tree itself for assistance.
Your story begins in the Dream itself, before you awake. If you successfully confront the shadow within the Dream, you will awaken, like all sylvari, in the Caledon Forest, under the Pale Tree. A new world of adventure, beauty, and danger awaits you!