Guild Wars 2 Has Player-Made PvP Servers

By Jim Rossignol on August 30th, 2011 at 2:07 pm.


Here’s an interesting little bit of GW2 info over on MMORPG.com, who have been talking to ArenaNet at PAX: “Not only will ArenaNet be making up their own servers for the quick and dirty PVP matches, much like the shooter genre’s setup, but Eric and Colin said they plan for players to be able to create and host their own servers or games with specific rule-sets as well.” I’ll be fascinated to see how that actually works. I have to admit that despite the original game’s heavy PvP focus, I’d barely paid any attention to how PvP will work in the new game. (I just want to wander around those environments.)

Anyone here a GW PvP with great expectations for the sequel?

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61 Comments »

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  1. Sheng-ji says:

    Does this mean you could have a private server running just for your friends…. suddenly very much more interested in an mmorpg

    • tyren says:

      “Hot join” PvP features a “game list” interface that will look familiar to anyone used to looking at dedicated server lists in TF2 or other FPS games (except a bit more frilly).

      http://www.guildwars2.com/global/includes/images/screenshots/pvp/gw2-pvp-001.jpg

      When they say “servers” they’re probably talking about adding a PvP match “server” to this list, not about letting users run private servers of the whole game.

    • Chalky says:

      Yeah, they’re not talking about servers you host yourself – they’re talking essentially about having a dedicated server hosted at ArenaNet (linked to your characters and account, obviously) that you can control all the settings for (time limits, special rules, who can join etc…)

    • Dominic White says:

      It really does. TB is still learning the basics and hamfisting his way through the controls in that video, but the higher level play from Gamescom looks a lot like a faster, more arcadey third-person DOTA, minus the creeps. This isn’t a bad thing.

    • unlimitedgiants says:

      No it doesn’t. PVP looks terrible.

      I don’t want to play PVT (Player Vs Trebuchet). NO ONE does vehicle combat good. Why? Because it’s not good. It sucks. Siege engines are dumb in PVP. “No, they’re fun!” No they aren’t. Did you even watch those videos? Here’s what they did: “One guy go to our cannon, two guys go to their cannon, and the other two go to the three capture points!”

      So in a game about capturing points, over half of the people are sitting at cannons. Yeah, that’s swell. NO IT’S NOT!

      I don’t want to play mini-PVP. If I want to fight in small battles on random people’s servers, I’ll play TF2. I don’t want tiny battles where the most fighting that will happen is a 2:1 or a 1:1 fight. Take the above scenario. If the other team does the same thing, the cannons will have 2:1 fights, and the rest will have — if any — 1:1 fights, as four people scatter across three capture points.

      That’s not fun.

      I don’t want dinky-ass battles. I want HUGE battles. I don’t want to fight cannons, and have random cannon fire dropping into the fight. That’s not fun. I don’t want to drive a tank around. I want PVP. Not PVT.

      Guild Wars 2 has really really lost a lot of my faith in their ability to do compelling PVP.

    • Deviljeff says:

      @unlimitedgiants I have to agree on this. To be clear : i’m a Guild Wars (1 and 2) fanboy and I think ArenaNet is making the best game ever! However, if the PvE aspect looks perfect, I don’t like the direction they are taking with this format of PvP (WvWvW is something else and I am really looking forward to it).

      One thing that made GW1 PvP (especially GvG) so great is that you were always fighting in a group. After all, “Never fight alone” was one of the catch lines for GW1! Sure teams could split (flag runner for example), but it was not the main focus.

      Now, it seems they encourage the exact opposite : never fight in a group, because the other team will capture the other points…

      I still have hope though, we’ve only seen one map so far, maybe they don’t all have a trebuchet :P Finally, I’d like to see a mode where the objective is simply to kill the enemy team, nothing more.

    • Calneon says:

      @unlimitedgiants Who said that PvP games were 5v5?

    • unlimitedgiants says:

      @calneon – Right here: http://www.guildwars2.com/en/the-game/pvp/pvp-overview/

      Tournament play is 5v5. Non tournament play ranges anywhere from ONE VS ONE to 10 v 10. (That gives you an average of 5v5.)

  2. Rii says:

    So how is this not going to be paradise for cheaters? Will folks on private servers be playing with ‘copies’ of their characters? Creating new ones from scratch for the purpose?

    • Sheng-ji says:

      I guess characters will be locked to a server, no transfer possible and I’m sure cheating will be rife on private servers but the official ones should be as cheat free as in any mmo

    • AMonkey says:

      They are servers for PvP only, not the entire game.

    • Taedirk says:

      Structured PvP in Guild Wars 2 uses prefab gear and no racial skills with characters leveled to maximum. A level 1 of the same race and class as a level 80 will be identical as soon as they enter PvP. There are gear options to customize the character, but those are freely accessible to everyone.

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      Screwie says:

      I always understood evening out the levels for structured PvP, but with private servers possible the prefab gear/skills thing makes so much sense now.

    • Dominic White says:

      And naturally unstructured PvP, such as the big World vs World mode (which sounds a lot like a swords-and-sorcery Planetside) will be hosted on Arenanets side. Basically, everyone wins.

      WvW sounds like huge fun to me. Word is that it’s open from the very start, and you actually gain levels and loot from playing it, to the point where you could fiesably hit max level and endgame gear simply from fighting other players, and never touching a monster.

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      skalpadda says:

      (no, that was not the post I wanted to reply to.. carry on)

  3. clownst0pper says:

    RPS, as a PC centric website your so far behind on MMOG news it’s a travesty and getting it from MMORPG.com is even worse. That’s like using The Sun as a reference point for an indepth analysis on the Libyan conflict.

    Please get someone on board who genuinely knows and likes to cover MMOGs so your news isn’t two weeks old….

    Besides that, keep up the good work! :)

    • Rii says:

      MMORPUGGRS are kinda their own universe though. There are many such niches in the world of PC gaming and RPS is deficient in all of them from the perspective of anyone who’s deeply engaged with a particular scene. It’s a generalist site, s’how it goes.

      If there are specific stories within a particular niche that you think the writers should take note of you might like to send them a tip.

    • clownst0pper says:

      Probably but this is one area where RPSs coverage is poor at best. It’s an avenue the site could really tap into but don’t. Instead we get a half arsed news post that is sourced from the worst possible place, whilst the news itself is as old as the hills.

    • bluebomberman says:

      You’re expecting too much of them. RPS has no pretense of covering everything on PC, especially the crowded, ever-evolving, no-finality MMO genre.

      A greater focus on MMOs would probably come at the expense of covering games like, say Deus Ex: Human Rev. I’d rather they stick to doing what they do best.

    • Ian says:

      RPS hasn’t ever claimed to be (or to WANT to be) an all-consuming PC news behemoth, has it?

    • clownst0pper says:

      I suppose not Ian, but they cover enough shit games (daily) that I see no reason why they couldn’t bring someone on board to match the rest of the sites great coverage. The only good MMOG piece I’ve seen from RPS is the coverage of Funcoms The Secret World, everything else is forgettable filler pieces they clearly have no care for.

      There are those of us (and millions more) who really love MMOGs (and not just WoW) so why not exploit it? People read crap sites like MMORPG.com because there is no good MMOG coverage (even Massively is lacking).

    • Jnx says:

      Aren’t there enough sites concentrated solely on this genre of pseudo-games? There could be an automated newsmachine for those though. ” revealed, will have exactly the same features as all the others except not better at all. Be ready to take an exciting trip to the land of where monsters stand waiting on otherwise static world waiting for you to grind on them until you get a new piece of gear for your puppet.”

    • Rii says:

      @clownst0pper

      Maybe this particular story is arse. I can’t speak to that but I grant that it’s entirely possible: the RPS crew does great work but they’re only human. I was thinking more broadly in terms of the quantity and granularity of RPS’ coverage of MMOs. Fact is, MMOs churn out news like nothing else, it’s in their nature to do so. Covering all that really is a full-time website in itself. Hell, most MMOs can justify their own newsblogs. So whilst there’s perhaps room to improve, I wouldn’t expect nor desire any radical changes to RPS’ coverage model.

      Then again, perhaps a weekly MMO roundup would be a good candidate for additional Sunday content as with the recent addition of Mr. Stone for sims.

    • bluebomberman says:

      But how would a MMO roundup work? One person can’t possibly keep with with all the current and upcoming ongoings without losing any semblance of a regular life. Can you imagine trying to play WOW, Guild Wars 2, SWTOR, Firefall, The Secret World *all at once* for a weekly article? Yuck.

      EDIT: It must be said that Joystiq saw fit to siphon off much of its MMO coverage to Massively years ago.

    • clownst0pper says:

      That would be much appreciated. Feel free to ask me to help RPS, I know my stuff ;-)

      In all seriousness though, there is a lot of MMOG news knocking about and some of it is a really big deal to people. The in game servers GW2 are offering is a first within the MMOG genre and deserves greater coverage than this.

      Where is Wulf to agree with me?:)

      [edit] @ bluebomberman, well that’s easy enough- be part of the communities, read the developer diaries and pick out the juciest news elements.

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      skalpadda says:

      To be fair, there has been some pretty good MMO coverage on this site. Pretty much everything Jim has written on EVE, some good stuff on City of Heroes and some older articles about WoW (back when it wasn’t 4 years since anyone on the site played the game). For much of the editorial and reviews stuff they’ve also brought in other people with more passion and interest in the genre/games, which is great.

      I agree it isn’t the best place to get MMO news, but there are other places to get that and I’d much rather RPS focus on the things they feel passionate and have something interesting to say about.

    • Jim Rossignol says:

      I don’t really follow MMO news closely any more. Same old shit. I posted this story because it seemed unusual to me, which is my only criteria for posting MMO-related news.

    • Reapy says:

      I read RPS because of their coverage of ‘shit’ games and the unusual. I think I can safely say that despite living in another country than most of the writers, I’ve probably played games just as long as them, and quite frankly, most of the time I am bored with what is coming out.

      When I found RPS I found a bunch of people who’s gaming brain is ticking at about the same pace mine is, so when they do articles on games I know that there is something worth looking at in the story, rather than a bunch of random news that TANK/DPS/HEALER MMO #45664 has implemented some random incremental balance tweak.

      GW2 gets just enough coverage here, enough to say hey look, they are doing something different here, and god damn they have good artists, so if you want to know more, googles it.

      That’s what I like about RPS, it gives me places I might want to investigate further and doesn’t overwhelm me with details. That is for the specialty sites.

    • tyren says:

      @clownstopper

      To be fair, a site that’s entirely dedicated to MMO news (massively.com) also completely dropped the ball on reporting this, and in a much worse way. They tossed up an article yesterday flipping out about how Guild Wars 2 would allow “private server functionality.”

    • sneetch says:

      @Reapy

      That’s precisely why I’m here too Reapy, I think of RPS as more of a source of “Look at this, it r OMG!” articles rather than “Exclusive Reveal: we have screenshots of the new foot model for male human rangers here before anyone else! Large or small feet? What does that say about them? Will they have trouble getting shoes? Clickz!!!”

      If I like the look of a game then I click the convenient links they provide and read more, in general I’m more than happy to leave a lot of the details as a future surprise, but this feature sounds really good and is making me look forward to GW2 more.

    • PopeJamal says:

      I agree with clown: Don’t make a half-assed effort with old news.

      Comparisons with other sites are irrelevant, since we’re talking about this one. Either report stuff in a timely manner, or don’t bother. It’s just kind of tacky to do otherwise.

      This is not a shit website: it’s fairly well known and respected. I’d expect a little more effort from a place like this.

    • Warskull says:

      Most MMO news is boring and most MMOs are bad. I would much rather have RPS focus on quality writing and featuring good games. Would adding a dedicated MMO writer really improve the site? There are plenty of MMO news sites out there that have every little detail of MMOs for you.

      RPS never has posted every single tidbit of everything.

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      BathroomCitizen says:

      I don’t really care about the MMORPG coverage, it’s boring. And as others have already said, if I want to know about MMORPGS I just go to a specialist website.

      RPS is the source of all the interesting stuff that other news websites lack. Before finding RPS I was a lost soul in a sea of poo.

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      skalpadda says:

      “Before finding RPS I was a lost soul in a sea of poo.”

      Box quote :)

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      Hanban says:

      @PopeJamal

      “Either report stuff in a timely manner, or don’t bother. It’s just kind of tacky to do otherwise.”

      I’ll have to disagree. I would never(perhaps a bit of a stretch) have found out about these servers had it not been for them reporting about them, however tardy. None of the others news outlets about gaming I read have reported about them either. So I’m quite happy with the coverage of MMO games on RPS.

      You know, just because it’s not news to you, doesn’t mean it’s not news to someone else :)

  4. mindlessrant says:

    Played alot of PvP in Guild Wars to the point where my day wasnt complete with at least 2-3 hours of Arena or GvG/ Heroes’ Ascent, and to be honest, I cant really say what to think at this point about PvP in the new game. There simply isnt enough information yet. the first sported alot of different game modes, rankings, spectator modes, all that neat stuff. They should stick to what they did with the first game and improve on the formula for PvP. PvE looks absolutely fantastic and a big step up from the first game. Something like dedicated servers should be awesome too.

  5. AMonkey says:

    Its pretty awesome how they are giving PvP tools like a typical FPS like servers and drop in games.

  6. McDan says:

    I played pvp on guild wars, along with the normal part of the game, was really fun as it was, so hopefully all these improvements will make it great. Very much looking forward to this game. The environments themselves are just amazing.

  7. Tei says:

    I am surprised by this. But wen you thinks about the business model it makes sense. GW makes money selling box, and must run server that cost money. Players want to host the servers, because can build communities around it (maybe a server where XP gain is much faster, but mobs are harder?). Players get what players want. GW get what GW want. Everyone happy.

    Anyway is still to see how this model work.

    • Dominic White says:

      Players only get to host PvP servers, and (from the sounds of it) only arena-type games, which are for up to 20 players. The campaign and World PvP (huge freeform multi-hundred-player warzones) stuff is still hosted by ANet.

    • Malk_Content says:

      @ Tei.

      Although they will be able to host their own rulesets XP doesn’t come into it. The structured PvP (the tye talked about here which player can host) automatically bumps you up to lvl 80 and gives everyone the same gear options for the duration of the match. Makes everything nice and fair.

      WvWvW (Server vs server vs server) ongoing unbalanced pvp can’t be hosted by players, but is the one in which you use your normal PvE character and can level up etc entirely inside that Pvp if you want.

  8. GenBanks says:

    Hehe this is a bit of a slap in the face to the news I read elsewhere that SW:TOR wants to become the first ‘spectated’ MMO. Seems GW2 is likely to beat it on that front.

    • Stupoider says:

      Spectated as in spending most of your time watching two characters juggle quest text for the majority of your time? Because I can’t see TOR having much capacity for any other kind of spectating!

  9. roy7 says:

    I think MMORPG has misled people on this. If you watch the Q&A panel discussion they got this from (it’s on YouTube), the system for PvP matches is like a FPS server selection list, not the lobby system of WoW/GW/etc, where you queue and wait. The games are hot joinable and you choose the “server” you want to join. You can stay on that server after the match to play again, with the same people (if they don’t leave after the game). More community than being randomly mixed in with people match after match.

    They also said players can make their own “servers” with custom rulesets and so on. Nothing in the panel suggested people are going to be running copies of GW2 servers on their own hardware and it’d somehow import copies of your characters from ArenaNet’s servers to your little private server. I thought, in context, it was clear the games would all be hosted within GW2 like normal, but you can make custom matches.

    Like how LoL lets players make their own games with various settings. But they aren’t running LoL servers on their own hardware.

    • clownst0pper says:

      You Sir are on the money. That is exactly how it works. This is why people should not listen to MMORPG.com!

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      Screwie says:

      If that’s the case, no doubt we’ll have word from ArenaNet within a day or two to clarify. They tend to be very communicative when it comes to managing misinformation.

    • PaulMorel says:

      Good point, roy7.

      However, they don’t necessarily have to allow you to import a character to allow you to play your character on a different server. They can simply set up an API that makes calls back to the server for character information, and other details. If they closed off the client software, then this might be feasible.

      But you’re probably right about what they meant.

    • Suilenroc says:

      Yeah, I see people linking this story everywhere and they just have it wrong.

      They’re letting players create their own game rooms with user specified gametypes and player limits, accessible through an in-game browser. The talk of “servers” and “hosting” has all sorts of false implications.

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    Daiv says:

    What a weird world we live in when an MMO allows more control than Modern Warfare 3.

  11. zergrush says:

    If the Mesmer gets announced I’ll probably have to find some time to get into hardcore pvp.

    Playing a Surge or Migraine Mesmer is one of the fondest gaming memories I have.

    • mindlessrant says:

      descent interrupt Mesmers were much more of a pest tho imo. Lets not get into it to much :P (Migraine was only really good with alot of stacks on top of it)

    • Dominic White says:

      Everyone is hoping that the final class will be Mesmer, and I don’t think they’ll let us down. I just love the concept of playing a passive-aggressive mage. Why throw a fireball when you can make the enemy trip over their own feet and impale themselves every time they swing a sword? Such a creative class.

      Of course, GW2 has dropped all targetted abilities and invisible buffs/debuffs – spells are all now either area effect or linear shots that can be avoided, to make things more visually readable. I wonder how they’ll adapt the Mesmer to take these new elements into account.

  12. FD says:

    This doesn’t surprise me in the slightest. When I played GW2 PvP at PAX my first thought was the PvP felt like LoL with some nice improvements. It seems to me that ArenaNet are aiming to make a game to be picked up by MLG that also happens to be an MMO for those less enamored with the PvP side of things.

    I’ll be interested to see how it turns out because it seems really over ambitious.

  13. Riotpoll says:

    If it plays anything at all like the originals pvp I will throughly enjoy it, fast paced, skill and team play based. Most fun I ever had with a player v player game was GW, until the huge powercreep of Nightfall anyway!

  14. WrongThinker says:

    It is a rare thing that every single piece of news coming out of a game makes me more excited for it, but every freaking time there is any GW2 related news I think to myself “That’s awesome!” They haven’t dropped the ball once.

    I’m beginning to doubt a game so impressive can even exist!

  15. MythArcana says:

    Clearly, Guild Wars 2 is quickly becoming more favorable than Blizzard’s six-year-and-counting fiasco.

  16. PaulMorel says:

    Holy MFing Shiiiiieeeet!! I never played GW1, but I always wanted this in an MMO! I can’t wait to see how this works!

  17. X says:

    Helps with tournaments and e-sports in general (not to mention scrimming) . A sure way to boost their credibility in those circles.

  18. Kaiji says:

    I’m not the type of person to say “This MMO will kill WoW”, but this MMO will kill WoW.

  19. psyk says:

    @Jnx + jim

    That sounds exactly like 90% of the gaming industry and this site, should just stick with the we can ‘t be arsed excuse.