This is excellent. ArenaNet just launched what it's calling the Guild Wars 2 Hall of Monuments Reward Calculator. Guild Wars players will remember the Hall of Monuments, where their characters amassed trophies and rewards spread across five different categories. Well, depending on how much you collected, the Reward Calculator tells you what those achievements will gift you with in Guild Wars 2, and it can be anything from animal companions, to pets, to special weapons and armour. Guild Wars veterans! Go and see what you're entitled to.
Such generosity demands answers. The gift horse must be looked in the mouth, because who knows what could be in there? It could be a bomb. We had a quick word with ArenaNet game designer John Hargrove about how and why this scheme came about.
RPS: Why reward dedicated GW players? Surely they're a captive audience?
John: For us, the question is, “Why not reward Guild Wars players in Guild Wars 2?” If you start taking your players for granted, you may as well pack it up and go home. Ever since we began working on Eye of the North, we knew we wanted to create a bridge between the original game and Guild Wars 2 and a means of rewarding our dedicated players. The rewards in the Hall of Monuments are an excellent way to honor the achievements of Guild Wars players and recognize their support, but to do so in a way that wouldn’t imbalance the game or alienate new Guild Wars 2 players. We think that our veteran players will be well pleased by the range of titles, items, armor, mini-pets, and animal companions that are potentially available to them – it’s our way of saying thanks for all the support.
RPS: Would you say that the Hall Of Monuments is basically a standard achievement system, but made into something physical in the game world?
John: It is very much a system that measures the achievements of our players, but between the awe- inspiring chamber full of monuments that tell your character’s story, and the extensive rewards we will be offering our players in Guild Wars 2, I would hope that our players wouldn’t think there was anything really standard about it.
RPS: Can players go back to Guild Wars and complete this stuff to open access in GW2? Or is it only for those who already played Guild Wars extensively?
John: Anybody who has Guild Wars: Eye of the North can begin building a legacy right now for their Guild Wars 2 characters to inherit. Even after Guild Wars 2 launches, players will still be able to go into Guild Wars and earn achievements in the Hall of Monuments that can translate into rewards for your GW2 characters. We’ve designed the rewards from the Hall of Monuments to cover a wide variety of player types, from the most casual to the most hardcore, so even people with only moderate experience in Guild Wars will be able to reap many benefits of the Hall of Monuments in GW2.
RPS: Will any of these items provide a significant gameplay advantage for GW2 players, or is it more tokenistic?
John: While the rewards are all exclusive to the Hall of Monuments, they will offer no long-term gameplay advantage over other items that players can acquire in-game through normal means. For example, the Ithas Longbow will be a unique, really cool looking vine-wrapped bow with strong low level stats because we want players to have access to it right away. We understand though that our players didn’t work their butts off for a reward that only lasts 5 to 10 levels, so we also plan to have a way for players to keep using these special rewards as they level up.
RPS: Does GW2 have a Hall Of Monuments equivalent? What can you tell us about that?
John: We definitely will have a means to track achievements and titles in Guild Wars 2, but we’re not quite yet ready to discuss the nitty gritty details of it yet.
RPS: Thanks for your time.