Guilds have always been a core part of Guild Wars, the easiest way for players to organize themselves. But until very recently, we’ve heard almost no information on how guilds would be represented in Guild Wars 2, other than they would be there. This of course led people to complain – “The game is called GUILD Wars, obviously guilds are very important to it! When will we get guild info?!”
I would like to point out that this is a slightly erroneous assumption – the game is named for an event that ended with the Searing in Prophecies. GW2 is looooong past that, and there’s been no hint that there’s been any guild wars since that last one – probably because the world as a whole is too busy with other, bigger issues. But anyway! That’s not the point of this.
We did finally get some guild info during PAX. Not much, but what we did get was enough to make people explode with whether they liked it or not, what it could mean for the game, and claims of doom upon us all. Ahem. So, what we know:
- Guilds are account based – join with one character, and all are a member of that guild.
- You can join multiple guilds. No news on if there’s a limit on how many you can join, so for now we’ll go with “As many as you’d like”.
- You can represent one guild at a time on a character, and can switch this as you please.
- Doing activities with your guilds will earn influence. This can be spent on things like guild storage or experience flags.
- Guilds can capture keeps in World vs. World PvP, and can use influence to upgrade these keeps.
- Guild halls will not be in the game upon release.
The multiple guilds bit is what has people buzzing the most. Some love it, some hate it, some are in the middle or simply do not care. There’s enough buzz about all of this that it’s the subject of GuildMag’s current blog carnival.
Personally, I’m one of the ones that loves it. I’m in a guild in GW1. It is a small guild, consisting of under 10 people. We’re not a speedclear or PvP guild or anything like that; more that it’s nice to be able to see when someone’s on if we want to go do a mission together, or try and tackle an elite mission or HM dungeon or something like that together.
There’ve been times, though, when I felt slightly limited because of the fact that I’m in a small guild. For example, we were Kurzick-aligned from the start. My Kurzick title got to rank 6, but I hadn’t gotten anywhere on Luxon yet and wanted to put that in my Hall as well. My options were to pester my guild leader to change our allegiance, or leave the guild and join a Luxon one. I didn’t want to do the latter, but if I didn’t succeed at the former, I would have had to do so. Thankfully we did switch over to Luxon, since everyone had their Kurzick rank more than high enough, and I now have my Savior of the Luxons statue ;) But all the time on forums you see people asking about getting into PvP or speedclears or the like (things I don’t do myself, but have had some interest in at least learning, especially speedclears), and they’re told to join a PvP/SC guild. That doesn’t help you already if you’re in a guild that you know and like, though!
But in GW2? That won’t matter. I have a bunch of coworkers that I’ve gotten interested in GW2 and are all planning on playing it, as well as friends like my boyfriend (who has played some GW1), and they want me to make a guild for us. I can make and lead that guild. At the same time, if I feel like dabbling in some PvP, I can join another guild for that. I can join up with Izari of Talk Tyria and join her guild. Depending on who’s online and what I feel like doing, I can swap which guild I’m representing. It’s great.
I’ve seen some complaints about it, saying things like “it just makes guilds into social groups” and the like. Well, really? I’ve never seen guilds as anything more than that. They’re a group of people I sometimes play with, are friends with, and like to talk to. That’s it. I would do those things if I wasn’t in a guild with them. I do those things with people I’m not in a guild with. Really, all it does is combine the “guilds are account-based” model with “guilds are character-based”. Yes, your account joins the guild, but you don’t have to have each character representing every guild, and if, say, you want to have four characters representing one of your guilds (or all of them), you’re not taking up multiple spots on that guild’s roster – just one.
I’ve also seen complaints about how it will effect guild loyalty. My opinions on such a concept aside, I don’t believe it will have any negative effect on a person’s loyalty. Rather, you won’t have people in the situations that I described above as being common in GW1. If you’re in a guild and want to try something that they don’t really cater to (say, you’re in a PvE guild and want to play some PvP with one)…then you don’t have to leave your current guild! Just join another one as well for those activities. Everyone wins out.
The only possible issue I’ve seen so far is that there’s no cross-guild chat so far (if I’m remembering what was said at the panel correctly). On one hand, I can understand this. Making the guild chat channel contain all of your guilds would just be chaos. But if you can decide which guilds to represent, why not allow us to decide which guild chats to display, even ones that we’re not currently representing? After all, if you’re on a WvW guild-only character, it doesn’t mean you might not want to talk with your PvE guild buddies. I’m also wondering why halls won’t be in at the start; that seems a rather large and odd thing to add in later. Could it mean something about how close the game’s gotten to release? Who knows. Not us, for sure!
Of course, we’ve really gotten very little information about how guilds will work in GW2 – this is just a small taste. So far, though, I am definitely pleased. What do you think of the guild information that we’ve been given so far? Like or dislike? What do you like the most or the least?