I spent this weekend in PvP for Guild Wars 2. After playing World vs. World most of Saturday it was time to try out the Instanced Competitive PvP zones. There are two in the game: Forest of Niflhel and the Battle for Kyhlo. Both of these zones are fast and furious. The games are quick and a great way to experience the professions you might want to play. You can enter PvP at level 2 and the instanced matches boost you up to 80 to experience some hard hitting play.
By far the best feature of instanced PvP is that you can test characters in it. No matter what profession you choose this is a great way to see skills and try them out on other players. I was able to play almost every profession and experience combat with each ones. If there is anything I would recommend when you get into Beta it is trying out the professions in the competitive PvP. It is a great way to see which one is best for your play style.
Now with that said let's look at the two zones that were open this weekend. The Forest of Niflhel was first and a green zone that looked like The Secret Garden. However it is a bloodbath. Each zone has objectives that the two teams must fight over. The Forest has a Keep, a Mine, and a Henge (think Stone Henge). There are two starting points for the teams and once the gate drops you are in the fight. The zones is set up almost like a maze so getting around leaves plenty of hiding spots for surprise attacks. It was great as a Thief in the zone being able to go Shadow and pop out as players ran through gates. There are also two mini-bosses in the zone which you can defeat for some points. There is a bear and ogre-like boss which are in the two far corners of the zone. They are quick targets - if the action lags, there is something to do. Also if you get into a fight with players near one, be careful if you aggro the boss all of a sudden as it could spell trouble. The Forest was a great zone and was my favorite of the two.
The Battle for Kyhlo was the other zone and gives off a city in distress vibe. The same concept applies from the Forest, with two teams fighting over objectives. Kyhlo has a Windmill, a Mansion, and a Clock Tower as objective. This zone again is set up like a maze, but I found it to be a little more open than the Forest. It's better for pitched battles but both zones are pretty similar. Kyhlo and the Forest both have players fighting for control of the objectives and holding them on a counter. The first team to 500 wins, either zone is a good choice for a fight, and once you jump in it all begins.
One other feature about instanced PvP that was very cool was once my first battle was over I had a message pop up on the screen asking if I wanted to volunteer to join another fight to balance the sides. I actually thought this was very cool. The main reason is some players like to win all the time, but true hardcore players want to see how well they can do against the odds. I like that it was an option and helps keep the gameplay going. With this system in place, once I entered PvP I did not hit a time where I was sitting still. The fights keep coming once you enter the system.
So just to go back to what I mentioned in the beginning, I really enjoyed playing the different professions in Instanced PvP. It gave me a chance to try the Thief and the Mesmer which I normally would not choose. I ended up having a ball with the Thief and doing really well in close combat. I also loved the stealth skills allowing me to hide and ambush foes. The great thing about playing the character at Level 80 is you really see all the skills and combinations that are at your disposal. It is also great if you only have a few minutes and you want to jump in and fight, as opposed to the time it may take to run around World vs. World PvP and capture keeps or find other opponents. This is really where instanced PvP shines, in the speed and action of getting into the combat and having fast fights that don't take forever.
There are so many different aspects of Guild Wars 2, it really is an amazing game. I spent the afternoon PvPing and then at night jumped on and did more of the PvE and followed my personal story. There is so much to offer a player in the game especially if you only have a short period of time to get in and play. Niflhel and Kyhlo proved their worth as zones which cater to all types of combat. I found the instanced, quick and dirty, competitive PvP to be just another amazing piece to the awesome Guild Wars 2 puzzle.