Quoted For Truth: Activities, Achievements and Feats

July 1, 2010 at 4:56 am | Posted in Guild Wars 2, mmorpg | 11 Comments
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A few interviews were released about Guild Wars 2 today, and in order to go over some of the more interesting things I’ll try to incorporate things from all of them.

You can check out Online Welten’s interview and article, IGN’s interview/article, and Game Reactors interview here. More GW2 news to come soon.

The interviews themselves are largely about achievements, activities, and feats. They also get into personality, traveling and a few other details, but I’ll start with achievements. Wow did this ever turn out to be long. Sorry about that.


Achievements are, however, bound to your account and not your character, meaning you can’t gain an achievement on two different characters on a single account. The reason is due to the nature of some of the achievements (one requires you to master every weapon-type in the game, and no single character can do that),

Good to know. In Guild Wars initially titles and achievements weren’t necessarily account based, and then they switched it over. Kind of disappointing for everyone who put the time in. I know a few people who had God Walking Amongst Mere Mortals on multiple characters.

I find Arenanet’s look at MMO content refreshing usually, here’s one reason why.

Our achievement system right now is like our long-term player goal system. What they do is like show you that you are on the path of mastering something and when you max that achievement you’ve mastered that thing. So, we kind of say, “you’re done in that area now, we don’t really expect you to continue there”, so they are kind of the end markers for all of our content.

I like that they actually have end points. Most games will want you hooked on doing something that will require working on it forever. This sounds like there is an end in sight somewhere. It actually surprises me that they even admit to having an end point.

Through earning achievements players will be able to unlock titles that they can display beneath their names.

I’m not sure I really care about titles. I walk around with “I have many leather-bound books” beneath my name in Guild Wars but only because I keep forgetting to unclick it.

In PvP instead of slowly unlocking skills to become more powerful, everything is unlocked from the start. So instead you’ll be unlocking more aesthetic items.

So everyone will be able to have access to the same power level of equipment and all the same skills and you get to unlock cosmetic achievements.

Sounds like there will be a wide range of achievements. I wonder if the cosmetic rewards from PvP are exclusive to PvP.

While there is no “1000 mobs”-achievement, there is one for 100 centaurs or 1000 centaurs.

Please don’t make me kill 1000 centaurs. Have I mentioned my “Kill 3000 black tigers” story? I’m not sure I’ve blogged about it, but I should.

Finally, it sounds like gameplay won’t be affected by achievements.

There won’t be any direct gameplay rewards from achievements, because if you’ve received an achievement, then you’ve mastered that aspect of the game, and won’t need anything to be better at it.


Shooting Gallery with centaurs, spiders, ettins, and devourers

As one of the interviews said, its pretty likely activities (mini-games) will be linked to achievements, they’re linked to titles in GW. We’ve known about activities for a while and in particular the Bar Brawl where an example was given of smashing a chair and using the leg of the chair to beat people. Here are some more examples.

Picking up a beer stein and smashing it over the head of another patron, for example, is an acceptable – even encouraged – course of action. As is chugging a beer and spewing its toxic contents, or waiting until the last moment to get the killing blow on a worn-down enemy.

But what do you get from activities?

“We will be giving both tangible and intangible rewards from doing well in activities,” Stumme told us. This would include, he said, skins for items that you might not be able to obtain elsewhere. “We also want NPCS that are reacting to you. If you just clean the floor with everybody at the bar brawl, you’d want guys saying ‘Just as soon as there stops being three of you, I’m gonna knock your lights out next time.'”

It sounds to me that if you’re unlocking skins all the time, then crafting is going to be heavily skin based, but I assume crafting will come along in another article some time. Another interview elaborates a little bit on this.

you might get a tooth as a drop. And then we might have an NPC that is a collector that is associated with the activity and you’re turning in teeth to him because it just so happens that he is the local dentist and you’re basically sending business to him. So you can turn those items in for rewards. In terms of making them balanced, it’s more about getting an aesthetic reward, like a weapon or an armor kind of thing, it’s like a skin for that activity, you won’t be able to get it anywhere else.

That’s actually kind of clever. Although I wonder at the creepiness of a dude standing outside a bar waiting for people to come and give him teeth.

How about another example of an activity?

So for example, using the snow ball fight; it’s something that has one side as a definite winner, there’s a scoring mechanic, you’re going to queue up and it’s going to be an instanced thing when it starts. But we could also have some that you can just jump into and join.

I was never a big fan of the snowball fights in GW. I was just too outmatched most of the time, and I don’t like the idea of Yellow Snow being thrown at me.

Another example.

imagine that you’re playing polo, but polo had pitfalls and bombs and traps going off. Things that are completely off the wall that we can get in there.

Polo!? Don’t you play that on horseback? Mounts!

We are not really ready to talk about mounts right now.

DAMN YOU ARENANET!!!! Wait! They’re not ready to talk about it? That means they exist!

Lord of the Rings Online fans rejoice. Guild Wars 2 is ripping you off! Yahoo!

[Mini-games] can range from a string of objects that each produce a note when interacted with (allowing players to “play” music collaboratively) to full on mini PvP games such as snowball fights and bar brawls.

I’m actually really happy about this. Anyone who plays LOTRO knows how cool this can be.

I think one of the most important things to note about activities is the following.

In terms of size or how many people are actually participating in the activity we do have it full scale up to a certain number and it casts off at that. In terms of accessibility every event is being designed so that regardless of your level you can participate on the exact same footing; from someone that is max level to someone who just started the game.

They scale, both in party size and for your level.

And how many activities are we looking at?

About 30-ish, I believe is what we’re looking at.

It sounds as though they’re tailored to their race’s home city as well, and that you can travel freely to get to the activities in each home city. Aside from the 5 home cities I’m wondering where the other activities will be. 6 activities per city or some spread out elsewhere?


Feats are essentially daily achievements that give rewards so that more casual players can keep up. Each interview mentions how this is kind of a replacement for rest experience.

Basically they help to make your initial playtime, like the first hour or two, be more efficient. And so a casual player that plays for a short time, compared to someone who plays three or four times as long, might get up to about half as much experience points. Those first hours are more efficient, and give you a larger reward.

Its actually a great replacement for rest xp. Where as in those games you get xp for doing nothing essentially, here you get rewarded for doing those daily feats as you’re actually playing.

So what kind of feats are there?

Like how many things you’ve killed, and at certain levels you get rewards for that. We keep track of how many things you’ve killed simultaneously, what variety of enemies you are encountering

There are four kind of feats you can do right now and we tried to make them so, that they appeal to different kind of players. There is the straight forward “count feat” where you get rewarded for the miles you hit or the amount of fighting you do every day. It is also important how many different kind of things you do and what challenges you face while running into creatures. There are some skill-based feats as well, such as how fast you kill, how many things you kill and how long of a killing streak you can do.

Measuring how many miles I run in a day? That’s interesting.

The rewards seem decent.

What basically happens is you are awarded something from our feat rewards. In addition to the normal loot from creatures for example you may get some professional loot, you’ll get extensive experience, some additional economy bonuses and that kind of thing. It is a direct reward and not so much about additional fighting.

Overall it almost seems like the rewards are too good. Just for doing what essentially adds up to daily quests I’m getting all that?


This seems like a way to help players role play. Guild Wars always had clever little dialogue responses to what quest givers would say, but good luck finding people to actually pay attention to quest text, or what you yourself were actually saying in response.

Over time, the way you respond to NPCs will categorize you as a certain personality archetype, and from there NPCs will act differently, and your actions towards them will change. The example we were given was the “badass” character who would use intimidation to obtain food or an experience buff from an NPC. A more honorable character might inspire the NPC to help, or talk them into it.

I think I’d be more impressed if the end result wasn’t always the same, which it seems to be here. Its great for role players, except I think there should be more approaches to it.

We measure three major personality categories; ferocity, dignity, and charm.

Three doesn’t sound like a lot to me. Can’t I be a sarcastic jerk? That’s a bit more my style.

The benefits seem pretty minor. For instance there are no visible clues to your personality but…

your personality does allow you to take certain actions in conversations, which will result in appropriate animations for the figures.


At least they mention a few specific things I won’t bother to quote. I can change my personality on a whim, I’m not blocked out of anything based on personality, and my reputation precedes me when I talk to NPCs. That should work pretty well.


I wonder if we'll get to fly on a flying ship

Travel in Guild Wars is both quick and slow. While you can warp to any town in seconds, if you need to get anywhere inside a zone it will take some time while you fight your way there. Here’s what they have to say about travel in GW2.

For Guild Wars 2, the team looked at a lot of the newer mapping technology that has sprung up throughout the internet, and have utilized many of the same techniques as sites like Yahoo and Google Maps to make it easy to use

Oh dude, I can’t wait for streetview to visit Divinity’s Reach. On a serious note if they can incorporate stuff like google maps (is the best! true dat, double true) has I would be impressed.

When a player opens up their map they will see all of the waypoints they’ve unlocked and can instantly travel to any of them for a small fee. In addition we have Asura Gates that allow players to freely travel to places they haven’t yet explored. For instance, a series of Asura Gates connect the main racial cities so players should find it easy to join friends who happen to be playing as a different race.

Slightly different but I like it. We’d already guessed the Asura Gates would be one of the main ways to get around. I don’t care about fees although I know the forums will be in an uproar over it. Especially over this part.

For example in the cities the amount is fixed. Once you are in a city you can travel anywhere within that city for free. Over longer distances there is some range based price to it.

And by god the most important thing to forum goers? Loading screens.

It really depends on how far you are going. For long distances, yes, there will be loading screens, for small distances – hopping back and forth- little to no loading screens at all.

I don’t care about loading screens as long as they aren’t ridiculous. A good loading screen is 10 seconds or less. If you can’t wait that long you have seriously got to work on your patience.


There is a lot of information here on what are essentially minor issues in Guild Wars 2. Achievements have never been a big priority for me and I doubt I’ll participate in feats or activities too much. Travel I’ve been curious about but I’m willing to put up with a lot as long as its not LOTRO. Personality doesn’t really effect me either as I won’t be role playing it too much unless its fun in some way.

What do I take away from this that’s really interesting?

The skins thing really points to crafting in my opinion. Otherwise how else do you put to use all those skins you’ve got?

With all this talk of achievements, very little mention of how they relate to home instances or how the Hall of Monuments factors in. Kind of disappointing.

The Feats acting as rested xp is kind of innovative. I don’t recall other games using anything like it.

Little disappointed by the personality choices. I wonder how the moral choices from personal storylines will go.

The activities do sound fun so far. Snowball fights must be norn, but I can’t really picture those guys getting into an actual snowball fight.



There’s going to be a blog post about this Thursday apparently. I’ll post more then.


  1. The music bit had me thinking of LOTRO as well – I’m a bit surprised they’re daring to take that on, given LOTRO’s mastery of the in-game music system.

    The less pleasant memory I have of LOTRO is “kill 360 wargs/creban/whatever” and that is what the kill feats remind me of, to my horror. I agree with you: please don’t make me kill 1000 centaur, ANet.

    In one of the interviews I think they did say you could alternate between ferocity and charm options for talking with NPCs, and you would be known as a bit of a scoundrel ;).

    I have to say pretty much everything else here has me excited. Like everyone else, I just can’t wait to start seeing this stuff in action.

    • Yeah it doesn’t sound like it will come anywhere close to the amazing lotro system. It sounds stationary, like maybe that concept art of the big band tuba thing (shoulda put that in the article)

      however it does sound cool.

      I get the impression you like a good scoundrel. maybe you should check out TOR. smugglers can choose to branch off as either gunslingers or scoundrels.

      • Oh, no, I’m as white-knight as they come! I’ll be playing TOR for at least the first month, and it’s Jedi Consular all the way for me :). Playing the scoundrel way sounds like a lot of fun, but I just can’t bring myself to behave that way….

  2. It is interesting that Anet is being so quite about the hall of monuments and it’s linkin to GW2.
    My thoughts are only negative; giving out equiement or armour makes the game easier and the loot seem less interesting. Giving out skins, again does the same thing. It’s hard to give out stuff without degrading the normal content.
    I have a strong feeling that it’s going to be really really minor. I’d be surprised if it was anything much; surely no ones actually doing the achievements because they think it’ll make them uber in GW2?

    • Yeah I’m thinking the HoM will be pretty minor rewards. skins, trophies. what not.

  3. I hope they will make the loading as it is in wow.

    • Whats it like in wow?

      • its like no loading screens at all!

  4. […] feeling that keeps players invested in their MMOs), which followed an interview touching on Achievements and Feats among other things, including travel (in short: yes, map travel is in. No, players won’t be […]

  5. I think WOW and GW have about the same amount of loading screen. Zapping around forces a load on you. GW has a little more when you zone; WOW doesnt have a load screen when you goto an adjacent zone.
    Neither breaks anything for me anway.

    • yeah loading screens don’t bother me much

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