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Guild Wars 2 Column: Clockwork Chaos

By David North on August 26, 2013

ArenaNet has thrown some pretty big threats at players in Guild Wars 2.  With some luck, and battle hardened skill, players have been able to repel them all.  This time feels different.  The threat spans across the entire world.  What’s really weird is how this isn’t a new threat.  Now players face off against the dreaded Aetherblades, The Molten Alliance, Steam Creatures, and Twisted Clockwork Knights all at once!  These combined threats started their attack in the heart of Divinity’s Reach during the Queen’s speech.  What little words the Queen spoke told us how Humans have triumphed against many obstacles.  A direct attack on the Queen now puts Humanity in a weakened state, and they will need every able sword and scepter at the ready if they are to overcome this new obstacle.  The Clockwork Chaos has begun...

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The moment Clockwork Knights started acting bizarre everyone knew something was up.  If only the Queen had ordered them to be disabled, we wouldn’t have so much trouble.  Silly Human pride.  But Clockwork Knights aren’t the only robotic element to this devious plan.  Steam creatures have been spotted coming out of Scarlet’s portals.  In fact, based on the design of the technology, she’s using Steam Creature machines to create these portals.  I would say Scarlet has somehow bridged the gap from their dimension to ours, perhaps permanently, and she plans to unleash something big before this is over.


This Steam Machine is one of many Scarlet is using to create portals.

So who is this Scarlet anyways?  We don’t know much, but what we do know is that she’s deadly.  She’s studied at all three of the colleges in Rata Sum, and finished with degrees!  There is also rumors that she’s been trained in combat by Charr and Norn as well.  Throw all of this together and you have one deadly enemy.  The worst part is that we don’t know her motives.  Why did she help form the Molten Alliance?  Is this really all to put an end to the Human race, or is there some other strange motive?  So many questions, but no real answers in sight.

To be honest I thought the Queen’s Speech event was just going to be more gloating from Queen Jennah.  Suddenly an attack breaks out and we see the Clockwork Knights transform into what could possibly be the coolest looking enemies in the entire game!  During the attack, you find that just taking them down isn’t enough.  Players must go to the pile of broken parts and destroy them before these machines build themselves back up.  This mechanic is like taking out a downed player in PvP.

Scarlet is opening portals in different zones all around the world, and it’s up to the many heroes of Tyria to close them back up.  Massive dynamic events take place all over the zone, with players banding together to take out the Aetherblade threat one step at a time.  Players must enter events where waves of Twisted Clockwork Knights, Atherblades, or Molten Alliance try to dominate the area.  These events host several veteran and champion enemies, so the rewards are well worth it, but expect a fight. In a lot of ways, they remind me of the zone-wide events of Rift and that's a good thing.  They're also going to be happening even after this content update is over, as a permanent addition to the game.


Meet Scarlet.

Now I’m not saying these events are impossible.  In fact, I completed a few events with only 2 other players.  We sure had to give it all our all.  Being dynamic events means they scale with more players.  It’s actually better if players split up into small groups and tackle several of the events at the same time.  There is a time limit for the players to push back enemy forces, so hitting several locations is much more effective than a huge massive zerg taking out one group at a time.  Even a champion enemy can last a few minutes against 75 players.  A few minutes can mean stopping the attack or not, so don’t just use brute strength.  It’s almost like they built this event to train people in tactics for WvW.  Very interesting, and Commanders really have some role in PVE this time.

Overall I’m in love with this event.  Its effects can be seen all over the map, and it feels like a real threat.  On top of that, I didn’t see this coming.  I was expecting something interesting to happen, but not a wide scale attack across the entire game world. I still can’t get the thought out of my head that these portals are really bad news.  I feel like something from another dimension is going to pop through one.  We should all get back to the battlefield and make sure that doesn’t happen.

Are you enjoying Clockwork Caos?  What do you think Scarlet's motives are?  Let us know in the comments below. 

David North / David North is a freelance writer for MMORPG.com.  David loves to play and makes games, but now he writes about them!  If you want to creep on him and make fun of his ability to draw, follow him over on twitter @David_the_North.


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