Today is the day. At some point around noon [or now], here on the first day of Autumn in the northern hemisphere, the Path of Fire expansion for Guild Wars 2 goes live.
As an outsider to the game… never got much past level 40… the expansion looks to offer up some standard sounding fare for players; New story, new zones, new skills/specs, guild halls, and the seemingly now mandatory character level boost. I think the new feature I can most related to is the addition of mounts.
Expansions remain a mixed bag for me.
On the plus it brings in revenue for the game. Expect a big spike on the GW2 chart when NCsoft releases Q3 2017 results. It also gives players more content, gets players who have lapsed a reason to return, and can invigorate the whole game.
But expansions always bring about change. Sometimes the change is minor and the spirit of the game remains true. That caters to the core base but won’t attract anybody new.
But sometimes expansions change the core of the game. I am reminded of Rift; I played the hell out of the base game, but then the first expansion changed design philosophy of the game and killed it for me. And, of course, new gear, new mechanics, new skills, and what not also have a habit of changing the old content for the worse as well.
Then there is the ever growing gap between the new stuff, where the center of gravity of the community is playing, and where any new player will start. I become more convinced as time goes along that level boosts are mixed blessing, a flimsy bandage applied to the gushing wound of linear, level based progression.
But I am also old and cynical and in a down cycle when it comes to fantasy MMORPGs right now.
Enough grumbling. Today is a fresh new day in Tyria and a lot of people will spend the weekend and beyond exploring the new things that Path of Fire brings. I wish them well on their journeys. Among other things ANet rolled out some stats to celebrate the launch.
Also, a launch trailer: