As Garrett pointed out last week, it’s been a while since we got any really new information from the ArenaNet folks on their massively anticipated game. It’s as if they came out for the tour of trade shows last summer and then quietly descended back into their cave to keep making their game what their vision called for… all the while leaving us with bated breath anticipating that next nugget of info. We know that the revelation of the game’s fifth class is not far away, and while we wait for what it may be (cough, cough – Mesmer – cough) I can attest to becoming slightly disenfranchised with the whole hype wave I was already riding for a game that’s at least several seasons from being in my hands.
But maybe that’s the point.
The trade shows last summer gave just about everyone a healthy dose of what GW2 is actually going to play like. We were on hand for every one of them. Many of our staff members got their hands on the game, found it to be very familiarly Guild Wars, and at the same time something altogether new and intriguing. The hype continued. We sat down at PAX in Seattle to see just how the Dynamic Events that everyone’s raving about are designed. We watched as the game was finally played by anyone on hand at Gamescom and saw that it was indeed living up the massive expectations of the team’s Design Manifesto. The last taste we got of GW2 before the development went dark on us was at the New York Comic Con when our own Mike Bitton sat down to play the game.
And now, like you, we’re all waiting for what’s next. There’s a myth about our kind of work, that we somehow are privy to info long before our readers. Truth is we often get exclusives or details about some game or another on the same day as everyone else. Every so often we’ll get carefully guarded information that has a very strict embargo date on it. But I can honestly say that we don’t know any more than our readers when it comes to Guild Wars 2. We’re all just waiting on the rain when it comes to ArenaNet’s next move.
I think that’s exactly how ArenaNet wants it. Think about it, really. It’s been months since the big reveals that came with the shows. And yet since then, we’ve (and I mean the collective “we”) haven’t stopped prognosticating and gushing about how GW2 is going to own the MMORPG acronym. Just about every veteran I see cross these boards is starting to wonder if ArenaNet’s sophomore title might just be the game to save them from their industry cynicism. There’s a whole lot riding on Guild Wars 2. The developers have been promising a lot, and from all we’ve been seeing, they’ve been hitting their mark.
2011 is finally here. The next round of trade and fan shows is just around the corner. I have a sneaking suspicion (and by this I mean a no-duh-feeling) that we’ll be hearing a lot more about GW2’s PvP. We’ll get a lot more information on the game’s story and the notion of “personal story”. We’ll see just how open the game world is. We’ll get the last of the classes, and learn about how ArenaNet is approaching the social aspects of GW2. And by the time late summer hits, I do believe we’ll have a soft release date of somewhere in late 2011. I know I didn’t say much with this week’s column. And that’s really because there’s less and less to say since the game went dark. But I do believe the media dry-spell is going to come to end here soon. And when it does, things will get loud and hype-ified once more. I hope you’re ready for it.