Today is the day that Guild Wars 2 has officially launched. It’s almost hard to believe that this day is finally here! Okay sure, for many of us launch was three days ago, but today is the official day that the game is available worldwide.
We’ve talked plenty about our memories of waiting for the game and the like, but that’s just us, the fans. What about the developers? The teams working on the game? What were their favorite memories? What was their favorite part of being involved with the development of Guild Wars 2?
I asked that one single question, and got answers from a variety of people who have been working on the game over the course of the past half of a decade.
So, ArenaNet, just what was your favorite part of being involved with the creation of Guild Wars 2?
Colin Johanson, Lead Content Designer
My favorite part of the experience was the very first Gamescom, when we showed the game for the first time! Not knowing what the reaction would be like going into it and knowing how long the flight home would be if it didn’t go over well, I approached the weekend with equal parts nerves and excitement. Thankfully the weekend went amazing; our fans were incredible and so much fun to hang out with that weekend. The flight home turned out to be a time to reflect on a successful weekend and look ahead to PAX one week later where we’d get to show the game again. That weekend really set the tone for all of us at ArenaNet when we truly knew we were on to something, and it has been an awful lot of fun ever since!
Jonathan Sharp, Systems Designer
My favorite part was getting to see the first real PvP come together. The classes, our first map, the secondary mechanic, traits…it all came together and it felt soooo nice after years of working on the game. The first PvP we had in the game was actually me and Izzy EMAILING EACH OTHER our moves…
Me: ”I mind wrack you with my Mes..”
Izzy: “Fine, I shield block with my warrior and close the space.”
Me: “I swap weapons and dodge backwards…”
Martin Kerstein, Head of Community
When we showed our reveal trailer at gamescom, and people were literally crying with joy in the audience.
Kevin Millard, Game Designer
The moment I realized management wasn’t joking when they said “we’re not shipping until it’s ready”.
Leah Rivera, Game Designer
I’d have to say my favorite part is right now! The adrenaline rush of addressing issues is they surface and the excitement of knowing that I’ll get to share this game with countless people is an amazing feeling. I’m very proud of this game and pumped to share it with the world. It is ready! :)
Stephen Clarke-Wilson, Server Programmer
My favorite part of being involved with Guild Wars 2 was developing a new thread dispatcher that’s different from the one standard one in all the books. Oh, and working with all these great people!
John Stumme, Guild Wars Live Team Lead
My favorite part of development for Guild Wars 2 has been watching something so incredible coalesce so brilliantly into the game that it is today, from what it once was. I was involved with initial design for GW2 the first two and a half years before I took over GW1, and it still amazes me how just how far the game has come, and how much our intensely talented team has been able to accomplish. Things were very different “back in the day” compared to the fantastic game you see before you now. In the before-times, we spent a good deal of our time theorycrafting what the game would be, what would set it apart from everything else, and writing content on the promise of things to come. I feel like I spent an entire year doing nothing but writing battle chatter for NPCs. I… don’t know if I have any ways left in me for one being to express the intent to harm another anymore. I count myself fortunate that I’ve been able to support GW2, and watch it grow from the outskirts looking in. That means I’ve still got the entire experience ahead of me to savor, the same as any fan, and I am looking forward to being a part of that along with the rest of you!
So there you have it, folks. We get to hear what they loved most about working on this game, as well as a few interesting insights into its creation (the emailing of moves is gold).
Also, thank you to Colin, Jonathan, Martin, Kevin, Leah, Stephen, and John for taking the time to answer these questions, as well as to Regina for allowing me to do this in the first place (and for taking the time to ask everyone and collect the answers!). You guys, and everyone there, are all amazing.