Hi, everyone. I’m Link Hughes, and today we’re going to look at the changes that Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns™ will bring to guild missions. At their heart, guilds are about social connections that deepen through shared endeavors. In our current guild progression system, guilds are rewarded for playing together in small groups, but the content that’s specifically designed to be played with larger groups—guild missions—sits at the end of a long process of progression. As we analyzed the existing guild system early in the development of guild halls, it became clear that guild missions should be central to guild play.
This was the root of the decision to make guild missions your source for favor, one of the currencies needed to purchase upgrades in the new guild progression system. Additionally, missions will be fully available to all guilds from the very beginning.
Once we established that missions would be at the center of guild play, we looked at the method by which players can access them. We want guilds to be adventuring together and, ideally, getting together in a large group (or a gathering with a few extra friends) once a week or so to run guild missions. For large guilds with abundant resources, crafting guild mission tokens was no problem, but smaller guilds couldn’t hope to keep up. And there’s really no good reason to block guilds from playing together or from retrying a failed mission.
As a result, we decided that in the new system, guild missions will be free to run as much as you want. Each mission will give its bounty of favor only once per week, on the first successful run, but each member can get their personal commendation rewards by running the mission at any time during the week, even if the guild has already completed it.
Finally, the old system encouraged guilds to run each type of mission per week, but with guild missions becoming the center of guild progression, we needed to mix up the available missions to introduce variation. In the new system, your guild will start with access to a few missions each week. These are the same for all guilds across the game, and each mission has a favor bounty attached to it along with some objectives. As your guild levels up, you’ll open up more missions that you can run each week.
For most of the missions, aiming every guild in the game toward the same one won’t cause a problem, but Guild Challenges and Guild Puzzles will get backed up in a big way. To avoid that, those mission types will be moving into their own instances. You’ll access them from the same places in the world, but they’ll otherwise function a bit like a dungeon.
To access the new missions, all you’ll need to do is interact with the start point. These are staying the same for rushes, challenges, and puzzles, and we’ll be adding new start points in Lion’s Arch for Guild Treks and Guild Bounties. Your guild can only have one mission of a given type active at a time, but you’re otherwise free to start them whenever you like.
To help facilitate travel to disparate mission locations around the world, you’ll be able to obtain a very convenient device for your guild hall. The guild portal will allow fast travel, for free, to the waypoint nearest to each mission start location available that week. You can also use it to travel to a selection of permanent destinations, such as Lion’s Arch and the Heart of the Mists. Players can either travel through portals alone or in a large group, making it easy to use your guild hall as a staging ground for adventures.
That’s the story on how guild missions will be changing in Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns. In our next post, we’ll take a look at our new guild-focused crafting discipline, scribing, and how it’s used to make consumables and decorations for your guild.