Living Story Season 1 has come to a close and it’s now time to focus back on World vs. World. In the last patch before WvW Season 2 Arenanet tossed in a few changes to how this season will function. Most of these changes were expected, but not all of them will really fix the issues we saw during Season 1.
Transferring Worlds During A Tournament
In the previous season players were locked to their worlds for WvW even if they paid for a transfer. The good part of this is it prevented people from transferring to a winning server right before the end to get the “phat lootz”. The downside unfortunately made it so returning players couldn’t play with friends in WvW if their friends were on a different server. During Season 2 players will be allowed to transfer to different servers anytime during the season, with some restrictions.
Once a player transfers to the new server they will be unable to participate in Eternal Battlegrounds and the Boarderlands for the remainder of the current match-up and all of the next match-up. Additionally the world which is considered your home server for WvW is dependant on how active a player is in WvW for that server. However, we don’t really know much about how activity is determined yet.
Here’s an example. I currently play on Yak’s Bend and let’s say I go through all of the season right up until two weeks are left there. And let’s say I only go into WvW a few times, enough to get achievements done and that’s it. Then I transfer to Blackgate right at the end and spend all of my time in Edge of the Mists. Would that count to making my home WvW server Blackgate? Does only time spent in Eternal Battleground or the Boarderlands count? What if I finish the meta achievement on Blackgate? Or get more parts of the meta achievement done on Blackgate?
We aren’t really sure right now and all of the options have downsides. The worst option would be if you just had to have the most actual time in WvW on your new server. If that’s the case hello WvW afkers.
The Meta Achievement
In order for people to qualify for the rewards at the end of this Season players need to get the meta achievement, which is just 10 achievements out of the 18 new ones added. This in itself will prevent afkers right? Maybe for a little bit.
I’m sure there will be a flurry of people trying to get the meta right away in the early weeks of the Season. Once people get those done the people who just wanted the achievement points and the chest at the end will probably stop playing WvW; while the people who love it will just keep on keeping on.
Remember the part where I was wondering what happens if just time spent in any WvW zone matters for your home server? This is where it matters. If I get the meta quickly, I could just transfer to Blackgate and afk in WvW enough to get guild wars 2 gold at the end of the season. Not at all optimal. Also if Arenanet does something similar with this meta as they did for the Living Story updates getting the meta achievement might be as simple as doing a daily everyday for ten days.
The New Tournament Set-up
One of the issues I talked about in my review of Season 1, was how on the surface it seemed like a lot of servers had a chance to win their league but how most of them really never stood a chance. Though the point spread was generally pretty close, the individual matches were more often than not hugely lopsided and for the most part it was a forgone conclusion who would win each week (and who would win each league).
The way Arenanet is trying to combat this issue is by having how teams perform each week affect who they’ll be matched up against the next week. However since who is matched up the next week is based on points earned in the tournament instead of say some metric based if the match was a blowout or close will probably net us the same result as last season. Let’s go through an example real quick.
As of today the Gold league for NA region would be Jade Quarry, Tarnished Coast, Blackgate, Sea of Sarrows, Maguuma, and Fort Aspenwood. The first match-up (since it’s based on world ranking) would be the first three against each other and the second three against each other. Also let’s say they finish in the order listed as well. Going into the second week the two winners (Jade Quarry and Sea of Sarrows) would be matched up against one of the second place finishers; while the other matchup would have one second place finisher against two servers which finished in third place. In this example it seems like the most likely winner (for the season) would be Jade Quarry… with very little real competition because of the point system for coming in first second and third.
Season 2 Results
First obviously my example was theoretical. I am not saying Jade Quarry is guaranteed to win, but the odds favor whoever wins the first week in each league. This is one area I really hope I am wrong because having a truly competitive WvW season would be amazing. I also wonder if fewer people might take part (because they figure their server has no chance at winning) which would only make these issues worse.
Even with all of these conerns I am REALLY looking forward to this season. The rewards look awesome (I mean have you seen those weapon skins??) and either way I know I’ll have fun fighting for my server.