Guild Wars: GOTY

Another shameless plug (to whom? perhaps it’s not after all) of my Guild Wars: GOTY ‘review’:

The Scoreboard

Graphics 8.5
Gameplay 9.0
Sound 8.5
Value 9.5

9.0 Excellent

Rating: PG

Difficulty: Medium

Learning Curve: 45 Min

“You really can’t go wrong with Guild Wars.”

Jess Nickelsen
by Jess Nickelsen

If you’ve spent any time at all on NZGamer over the past year or so, you’ll know that we totally heart Guild Wars, in all of its shapes and sizes. If you’re new to this site, or perhaps the Guild Wars game itself, you should know that we love it for its storyline, cool character creation, gorgeous and expansive world, and possibly most of all, its revolutionary pricing structure (free)!

Essentially Guild Wars is a MMOG/PvP arena/RPG all wrapped into one. If you’ve only ever played World of Warcraft (or Everquest, or Asheron’s Call) you’ll notice quite a few differences, but once you get used to them odds are you’ll never look back.

Why am I bothering with an intro? Well, the Game Gods recently converged and have blessed us with a Game of the Year version of Guild Wars (out now, in all good game stores near you!), which means if you haven’t started playing yet, now is a great time to start. Not only do you get to try out Guild Wars: Prophecies (the first of the bunch) but the GOTY version comes with some awesome new gear (see screenshots of them here). While the GOTY weapons aren’t the ultimate in loot, they’ll definitely give you a great head start.

Once you start out with a new character, and your new cool weapon, you’ll be pleasantly surprised as you look around and realise that Guild Wars has capped all levelling to level 20. This means that you’re given a slightly different model to play to, compared to other MMORPGs: once you hit level 20 you have to start looking around for other interesting ways to play the game, which also means that a lot of the traditional grinding and farming just doesn’t feature. Furthermore, it’s likely that you’ll only be half way through the game’s main storyline by that point, so you can expect a lot more fun even once you’ve hit the cap.

Another quite different feature of Guild Wars is its instanced gameplay, which means when you head out exploring, you leave the shared hub where you can interact and chat with other players, for a totally unique instance of the game, just for you or your group. While some have said this can create a lonely environment, others have found that it’s great for questing, in that there’s no need to wait in line behind other groups who are completing the same quest as you. Once you leave the hub, it’s all your story, yours and yours alone.

Once you’ve had a look around, we definitely recommend you check out some of the recent expansion packs (some of which are standalone and can be played outside of the Guild Wars: Prophecies game), for hundreds of new skills, some awesome PvP worlds, and new character professions. We’ve taken away the pain of indecision with our in-depth reviews of Factions and Nightfall, as well as a preview of the upcoming Eye of the North.

These games are all gorgeous, and offer an outstanding RPG experience. Considering the entire price of admission is restricted to the price on the box, we think you’d be crazy not to check them out.

(P.S. Like my avatar?)

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