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Guild Wars 2 Beta This Year, Says NCSoft

By - Source: Eurogamer | B 21 comments

NCSoft revealed in a conference call that the beta for Guild Wars 2 will launch sometime during the second half of 2011.

NCSoft chief financial officer Jaeho Lee revealed during a conference call that the company plans to launch the Guild Wars 2 beta during the second half of 2011. This indicates that the upcoming MMORPG could actually launch sometime in 2012.

Guild Wars 2 was originally announced back in 2007, promising a more unified MMORPG experience rather than a continuation of the current Guild Wars structure where players meet in public zones (cities) and then embark on private quests. Like Dungeons & Dragons Online and Lord of the Rings Online, the Guild Wars 2 landscape will play host to all visitors within and outside city walls in real time, but still keep the free-to-play model.

Now four years later, developer ArenaNet and its 150-member team is still sticking to its "when it's done" guns. But NCSoft may have finally broken the silence. "Starting from year 2012, we believe substantial growth will be driven by new blockbuster titles like [Blade & Soul] and Guild Wars 2," Lee told investors. "Also, Guild Wars 2 will go into beta testing stage in the second half of this year."

Can't get any clearer than that.

"Providing players with rich and rewarding gaming experiences is what we’re all about at NCsoft. This is a very significant year for us with some huge announcements," he later told VG247. "We'll have a major presence at Gamescom (Aug. 17-21) this year where we plan on stealing a few headlines."

What? No E3?

NCSoft may be anxious in getting Guild Wars 2 out on the market, as both Aion and Lineage have seen decreases in revenue due to "soft sales promotions." Lineage II actually grew quarter-to-quarter thanks to increased marketing, but overall, NCSoft's first quarter sales were down 7-percent year-on-year and 2-percent quarter-over-quarter. Net revenue is down 30-percent compared to this time period a year ago.

But will Guild Wars 2 breathe a little perkiness back to the company's earnings? ArenaNet’s Martin Kerstein indicates that the game will bring a new experience to a tired genre.

"What we try to do with Guild Wars 2 anyway is to break a lot of the existing conventions, like by getting rid of quests and basically totally focusing on dynamic events," he told RPS in a recent interview. "So you just run through the world and happen on stuff, and that stuff has an impact on the world. It’s not just there’s this one guy standing with an exclamation mark and you go there, he says ‘hey, those evil bandits over there have been threatening me for the last 15 years, like I told the other thousand people before you…’ Then you go there and they’re not actually doing anything. So you kill them then come back, so the guy says ‘thanks, everything is fine now’ but you turn around and the bandits are back…"

"Our dynamic events will actually have an impact on the world, so if you defend a village it’s safe," he added. "It’s more like a living, breathing world."

If NCSoft sticks to its forecast, we'll get to experience this living, breathing world sometime in the second half of this year.

Display 21 Comments.
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  • -3 Hide
    Anonymous , May 18, 2011 10:37 PM
    YES!! i cant wait oh yeah BTW FIRST!!
  • 0 Hide
    elcentral , May 18, 2011 10:38 PM
    so meny years iwe been waiting. makes me smile to be able to soon check it out. thx toms this made my day
  • 1 Hide
    bak0n , May 18, 2011 10:50 PM
    AION was to focused on hard core grinding and got boring quick. Also I'm now sold on the free to play model, although I'm not impartial to lifetime subscriptions either. It will be interesting to see what GW2 does.
  • 1 Hide
    samwelaye , May 18, 2011 11:44 PM
    Guild Wars is one of the best games I have ever played on PC. Hope GW2 stays true to its roots cause if it does it will probably be the best mmo ever made
  • -1 Hide
    sliem , May 18, 2011 11:51 PM
    WoW Cataclysm is already doing this dynamic stuff they call Phasing. You kill some baddies to finish the quest and then the landmark changes, no more baddies.
  • 0 Hide
    panacuba , May 19, 2011 1:56 AM
    Totally agree with bak0n, I played aion since closed beta 1, and after 3 months of official release i could not handle the Grinding, a friend of mine long time ago recommend me GW but i wasnt in MMO`s by that time.
    Now with my new gaming rig coming in 3 months ill give a shot to GW2 :) 
  • 0 Hide
    zkevwlu , May 19, 2011 2:27 AM
    sliemWoW Cataclysm is already doing this dynamic stuff they call Phasing. You kill some baddies to finish the quest and then the landmark changes, no more baddies.


    Phasing isn't the same... it's still quest based and it's still fully predictable and repetitive. GW2 is using a fully dynamic world, where there are no quests to do and all events are fully random. Each random event will trigger other events depending on the outcome of the current event. It's completely unpredictable, and each play through will offer completely unique experience.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , May 19, 2011 2:50 AM
    I hope GW2 has more depth and lasting appeal than Rift - which got boring after about 1 month (shallow endgame, no hook to play longterm).

    We need a MMORPG that doesn't get boring before the free month is up.
  • 1 Hide
    Kahless01 , May 19, 2011 4:35 AM
    i loved GW. ive had it forever. free to play is the way to go. i still have never finished the first game tho. never got through all the quests. only ever made one lvl 20 char too. in 5+ years.
  • 0 Hide
    Onus , May 19, 2011 10:15 AM
    I still play GuildWars; it remains my primary game. I don't like the frequent nerfing of skills (especially those which make no sense in the context of the game world), but I like messing with builds in PvE.
  • 0 Hide
    el_camello , May 19, 2011 11:11 AM
    Hi All
    I was among the early players of GuildWars before I moved to WoW.
    What I miss about GuildWars is that after I hit level 20 and buy the best armour could not find much progress to do. Unlike Wow where after hitting max level you can always progress via new gear...
    Did I miss something ?
  • 0 Hide
    el_camello , May 19, 2011 11:29 AM
    I forgot to say, compared to wow, guild wars graphics were just amazing... I spent so much game time wondering around and enjoying the landscape. If only wow had GuildWars grade graphics or better. The biggest innovation from WoW was the non need for loading screens between areas, this gave the impression of the continuity of the world ...

  • 0 Hide
    macewrox , May 19, 2011 12:03 PM
    Graphics wise, Rift and GW blow WoW right out of the park, but no game has as smooth of a combat system as WoW. Everything just clicks.

    Sorry NCSoft, but blizzard will still get my money unless I see some serious upgrades. Like jumping. Lol.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , May 19, 2011 12:43 PM
    @macrwrox GW2 has jumping, and I've heard from people that played the demo at PAX that the controls are tight and smooth - on par with wow.
  • 0 Hide
    tsnorquist , May 19, 2011 1:24 PM
    Guild Wars 1 is by far one of the best games ever released on PC in that genre. Its simplicity, free to play model system, and graphics are still good 6 years after the fact.

    I'm really looking forward to GW2. Can't come soon enough.
  • 0 Hide
    cronik93 , May 19, 2011 2:23 PM
    macewroxGraphics wise, Rift and GW blow WoW right out of the park, but no game has as smooth of a combat system as WoW. Everything just clicks.Sorry NCSoft, but blizzard will still get my money unless I see some serious upgrades. Like jumping. Lol.

    You mean the same old boring repetitive "#12345" hotkey combat thats in most if not every fantasy medieval style MMORPG? Theres a difference?

    At least GW2 looks way more involved..
  • 1 Hide
    smeker , May 19, 2011 3:07 PM
    This seems to be more and more like Duke Nukem Forever....
    Beta was suppose to be out last year and final Game out for the holidays this year...
    All of a sudden everything is pushed pack by couple of years...
    As long as we dont have to play on a 2004 engine in 2013...
  • -1 Hide
    shiftmx112 , May 20, 2011 5:36 AM
    Not really sure it's fair to compare a buy to play game vs one with a monthly fee, but still. This game is going to be much much more than just another WoW clone with a twist.

    P.S. Glad to see GW2 mentioned on Tom's.
  • 0 Hide
    WyomingKnott , May 20, 2011 2:34 PM
    Quote:
    It’s not just there’s this one guy standing with an exclamation mark and you go there, he says ‘hey, those evil bandits over there have been threatening me for the last 15 years, like I told the other thousand people before you…’ Then you go there and they’re not actually doing anything. So you kill them then come back, so the guy says ‘thanks, everything is fine now’ but you turn around and the bandits are back…"

    A brilliant description of the issue. And funny.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , May 23, 2011 7:31 PM
    I recommend watching the gameplay trailers for Gw2. Also the Manifesto. Both show how innovative the combat system is. It is so much more than a button smasher like WoW. GW 1 combat was based on what combination of skills the player put together and GW 2 doesn't disgrace it. The combat requires the player to have skills not just their character. Sorry WoW I left you because nothing mattered until we reached the highest level... GW has you beat.
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