Guild Wars 2 Path of Fire Launches Today!

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.

Guild Wars 2 – Path of Fire

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.

Some very Tyria mounts

There is, of course, a whole page dedicated to the expansion over at the GW2 site if you are interested.  More than one actually, as there is a FAQ and such.

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:

 

6 thoughts on “Guild Wars 2 Path of Fire Launches Today!

  1. valdin

    Re: “the seemingly now mandatory character level boost.” This was the case for the previous expansion, Heart of Thorns, and the current Path of Fire. It’s a max level boost that you get to go with the extra character slot for buying the expansion. After five years, players may want to have one more character/class so not a bad idea to give players a way to jump them to max level, which has never changed. It’s balanced enough that there’s no reason to change the max level. Just doing events and storyline should get you to 80 without much fuss. You should try it again when you’re out of the fantasy funk.

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  2. Sendric

    As a genre, traditional fantasy has never done much of anything to keep me in a game (or any other media for that matter) but Rift came a lot closer than most. I did not make it to the first expansion though. On the other hand, I was an active subscriber and player in Star Wars: The Old Republic from early access up until the Knights of the Fallen Empire expansion hit. I lost interest in the new content about halfway through my first play-through and I stopped wanting to log in to my high level characters, let alone roll new ones.

    After that I was an MMO hobo for a bit until I drifted back to Eve just after getting burned by No Man’s Sky last summer. Eve stuck for me this time, but it had changed as well…I logged into a character I had rolled but never played back in 06 (when I was an SWG:NGE hobo) with the base of ~50k SPs for new players, I also spent more than a few minutes trying to see what the prices for clone insurance was going for in 2016 ;). After some quality googling I biomassed that guy and rolled Sendric in New Eden. In part I think I am still in Eve because it is hitting me at a time when the game just works for me and my current RL, but there have also been a lot of good changes that don’t make the game feel so impenetrable to players that have not been training for years and years.

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  3. Griddlebone

    “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.”

    I’m really curious, what changed in Rift’s first expac (was it Storm Legion)? I never did follow it once I stopped playing.

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  4. Wilhelm Arcturus Post author

    @Griddlebone – For me it was zone design. The original Rift had some of the best, tightly packed, yet not crowded zones in any MMORPG I ever played. Things never felt cramped, but there was not a lot of excess space. Then with Storm Legion they seemed to have decided that bigger zones would mean more time spent walking, thus more time spent subscribed or something. Or maybe they just wanted to do really big zones. The content per zone was the same or less, but it was spread out over huge areas relative to the base game.

    There were some quest and story issues as well, but the zone design was what did me in.

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