Guild Wars 2 explores player variety and choices in Visions of the Past: Steel and Fire


Not gonna lie, my kids have been begging me for Super Adventure Box all week, and everytime ArenaNet tweets something on the Guild Wars 2 account, I hope it’s that. But not yet! Today’s dev blog touches on the development of last week’s Visions of the Past: Steel and Fire content drop. The studio’s Chloë Mills explains that the goal with the release was to allow players to “directly experience events that would otherwise occur off-screen” as well as provide gameplay that “appeals to a variety of players.”

“Overall we feel strongly about letting the player keep their own skills to not take away player agency, but we designed several opt-in circumstances such as [helping Vishen pick off baddies] to give players some gameplay variety,” Mills writes.

“Player choice was an important consideration when developing Steel and Fire. We wanted to create appeal for a variety of player types and skill levels. Since it’s story focused, the public mission needed to be inviting for those who seek that out, especially since completing it unlocks access to Ryland’s story instance. But we also wanted players who desire more challenging group content to be able to enjoy it as well, so we added increased difficulty options to tackle. We applied this philosophy to the warband members’ events too, so that players can engage with the content in ways that they find fun. Players who enjoy exploring jumping puzzles can snipe with Vishen from a comfortable distance. Players who want to support their group in ways other than combat can collect ingredients for Nicabar’s tonics or throw scrap to repair the tank. Those who like trying new ways to play might enjoy raining down terror from inside the tank or shooting dwarven cannons. Players who just want to fight enemies traditionally can join Cinder’s kill competitions and defend the tank from incoming enemies.”

In other GW2 news, the game’s 21st PvP League Season began this week. Have fun in there! I’ll just be over here with my kids asking when SAB opens for the 100th time.

Source: Dev blog, PvP

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Bruno Brito

I’m going to assume that “player agency” is the catchphrase now after the Shadowlands reveal.

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A nice, casual experience similar to open world events with the option to make it harder if you so choose. It brought back some of the feeling of Guild Wars 1’s missions, which is a positive to me. I’m looking forward to more of these.

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I played this and wasn’t impressed. It’s required to unlock the season 1 instances or I wouldn’t have bothered at all. The first time I tried it, there was very little direction about what to do and a handful of players were milling around. Nothing seemed to be happening and I left, wondering if there was event timer.

The second time I tried, I realized there had to be a lot of players doing things before directions would advance. The instance space unlocks as an escort mission progresses. This second group knew what they were about, enabling me to complete the check box. I probably won’t do it again.

Hikari Kenzaki

I had to think about this for a bit, but yeah, I guess it does do that if you play the instance as intended. lol. Duoing a 5-10 person instance made it a bit different.

Still, had lots of fun with it, but the tank ammo is an issue if you don’t have people constantly refilling and repairing you.