There has been mucho activity on the Guild Wars website recently. Now there's a link to an interview with Jeff Strain, co-founder of Arena, who recently spoke about the technology behind this upcoming title.
IGNPC: Guild Wars is supposed to offer a "shardless world"--how is this going to change the MMO experience for gamers?
Jeff Strain: Having an online game divided into shards or servers has created problems for gamers who desire to play with their friends. A challenge that arises is that, after creating your characters on a specific server and investing a significant amount of time progressing in the game, you discover you are unable to play with other friends because they are playing on a different server. Historically, this has been a difficult problem to address without starting over and recreating characters, buying additional accounts or paying a character transfer fee.
In Guild Wars, we wanted to eliminate this situation. An online game fundamentally offers the enjoyment of a social experience with both your friends and people you have never met before. We want to bring people together, to give players the opportunity to play with their friends at any time without hassles.
An additional benefit of a shardless world is that we can offer true worldwide competitions via our arenas and tournaments. With an undivided game world, you can be not just the winner of a certain region or a specific area of the globe; you can be the true world champion.
Good stuff, indeed, and there's more that technophiles will find fascinating. Interspersed within the text of the interview is a set of three cool progressive screenshots.