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Gamescom Interview with Colin Johanson

By Guest Writer on August 22, 2011 | Interviews | Comments

Gamescom Interview with Colin Johanson

Diving right in: Character customization - details please!

Colin Johanson:

Somewhat functioning character creation at Gamescom, where humans have the most options. Other races has the basic functionality with more to come! With the human you can get down to the fine details. Jawbones, eye width, eye brows. We really want you to be able to get down to detail on what makes the face unique. Each race will have unique ways of customizing their appearance.


How about tattoos?

Colin Johanson:

Yeah I think that's a definite possibility, but nothing is set in stone yet.

Can I get a really long beard?

Colin Johanson:

Yes, definitely! You can get a pretty long beard.

Tell us more about the endgame.

Colin Johanson:

The endgame in Guild Wars 2 is extremely rich. Ton of things to do when the game is launched. Let's talk about the stuff you can do when you reach level 80 on our first character! High level dungeons both with story mode and explorable mode which you unlock by finishing said dungeon in story mode. Explorer mode let's you repeat the dungeon but with different paths to take inside them. Each one of the paths has different kind of encounters and gives you a unique/different experience. Completing the paths gives you unique and rare items. Weapon sets, armor sets.

Also, thanks to our sidekick feature you can experience any area and event in the game, so it opens up a lot of possibilities to play with others no matter the level.

Next thing is that there's high level explorable dungeons with really cool events. Gain gold, karma and whatever else you might need for crafting and what not. These are made much harder and are intended for experienced players.

There's also crafting which is a huge part of the game. Which you can do all the way up to level 80. When you get to level 80 you can continue working on it, selling and trading items and materials. We anticipate players will dedicate a lot of time to this and the marketplace.

Moving on, there's world vs world vs world PVP. Which you can take your PVE character into at any time. This is your server matched up vs two others. In a two week long battle where you are fighting over giant keeps, you also have catapults. There's hundreds of players fighting with and against each other for the pride of their server. At the end of the week, the server that earned the most points win and gains a bonus for the next two weeks. Currently we can't talk about the details of these bonuses.

Our PVP system is also end content, an example being our competitive PVP system which we're actually showing the first time this week at Gamescom! It has truly ranked completive play which are tournaments you can join that have as small as four teams or huge tournaments. These have their own ranking system and rewards.

We also have the achievement system in Guild Wars 2. Where there are various types of achievements which you can accomplish to earn titles to show off to everyone.

Give us some examples of the mini games.

Colin Johanson:

In the human city there's a mini game which is a shooting contest where you compete with other players to shoot targets. Like when you were a little kid and got a rifle to shoot stuff at amusement parks!

Another one is where you can have a bar brawl, you can throw beers and chairs at each other, punch and fight. It's basically a drunken brawl. You earn points for knocking out other people.

One other involves beer kegs and teams against each other out on ice. Which involves ways to make people slip on the ice by pouring beer on it. The team which has the most kegs win.

How about mobile applications?

Colin Johanson:

We have a team focused on things outside the game and so far we have an app where you can see on your phone or your iPad where your friends are currently in the game. You can watch them running around the map and see where they are going. You can also chat with them live, while they're in the game. For example while you're in the bus or a train, on your way home from work. This makes it easy to coordinate things and planning to meet up in the game etc.

Are there going to be karma stores for real money?

Colin Johanson:

No. There are karma vendors in the game that sell things to you for karma. But we have no plans currently for a karma store.

Tell us about an interesting boss fight which we haven't heard about before.

Colin Johanson:

In the starting area in Guild Wars 2 which we are showing here at Gamescom there's a chain of events that lead up to a boss fight which no one has seen so far. In this dynamic event chain (four different parts), if you successfully manage to complete all these parts, a huge Ice Elemental is summoned by the leader of a tribe that worships a dragon totem you've destroyed which shoots ice shards all over, this event and fight actually changes the weather of the map. It causes a giant blizzard to cover this part of the map while the boss is there. The ice shards also turns into smaller ice elementals. If you defeat the encounter the ice storm will dissipate. This fight requires a minimum of five players, might be possible with a bit less if you're really good. It also scales dynamically up to 100 players.

Can you give more information on cross profession skill combos?

Colin Johanson:

Some examples of these combos are that the Necromancer can put down a totem which causes this cloud of sickness to appear on the ground and then he can send his minions into it and whenever they attack someone they cause said sickness ability.

The guardian can put down symbols on the ground, and as long they stand in the symbol they gain the benefit the symbol is giving.

Intra-class combos though are for example how the elemental has a static field that when you fire projectiles through it, they pick up a static charge which if it hits someone they get electrocuted and they start to shake. They can also put down walls of fire, so if you fire through it the projectiles pick up a fire effect. Also you can walk into the wall of fire and use a spinning axe skill, what happens then is that you shoot fireballs all around you, same goes for the Necromancer sickness cloud. There are a lot of combos like that which are available.

Which monster do you think is the most annoying one in Guild Wars 2?

Colin Johanson:

The hermit crab! Because it's so hard to kill due to how it hides within it's shell. Another ability it uses is that he dodges around you.

Which is the most visually pleasing area in the game according to yourself?

Colin Johanson:

My absolute favorite area is the Asura starting area. It's full of waterfalls, lush jungles and there's an underwater lab at the bottom of a lake with quests. However all areas in the game are amazing, so it's not really fair to single out just one. I love our art team.

Share whats new with GW2 at Gamescom 2011!

Colin Johanson:

PVP for sure. Everyone will learn it fast. Also the Asuran high level part of the map. The big encounters are there and an undead ship. There's a huge temple on an island that has around 9 events that involves defending the entire island against undead hordes that are coming from all directions. The undead dragon is new too.

The Charr starting area has a lot of great things in it. Something I don't think anyone have seen yet is the ruins of old Ascalon. It's really well hidden and completely haunted with ghosts. The remains of ghosts from Guild Wars 1. One of the ghosts in there is a dynamic event, allowing you to lead a demolition team deep into Ascalon and there's a statue of a character in Guild Wars 1 that everyone has to remember. If you successfully get the demolition team to the statue and cover the statue in explosives and they detonate it; the statue explodes and the ghost of that character comes out of it. This leads to a boss fight against a character you remember from Guild Wars 1.

Where are you with the game right now?

Colin Johanson:

We're currently in closed alpa for friends and family. Closed beta will happen before the end of this year. Release date is 'when it's done' .

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