Engineers of Guild Wars 2

May 19, 2011 at 6:43 pm | Posted in Guild Wars 2, mmorpg | 13 Comments
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At last those who dreaded the term 'gunner' can rest.

I guess up until recently I thought the only unknown profession of Guild Wars 2 would be the last to be presented. When I realized that the release date for Guild Wars 2 was nowhere in sight, that became less clear to me. They’ve been releasing professions as they become finished, and with the release date so far away, there was no point in holding back.

So instead of the mesmer, we get the engineer. A long speculated addition to the Guild Wars 2 universe. There was little evidence beyond the advance in technology in the timeline, but most people had settled on some type of tech savvy profession long ago, including myself.

Many of the people I speak to regularly had been guessing a lot about turrets. The ritualist of Guild Wars certainly meant Arenanet wasn’t opposed to the idea of turrets, and a few similarities between GW2 and Team Fortress 2 suggested turrets could also make an appearance, but I was never 100% convinced. It seems such an odd mix for an MMO.

As for the actual mechanics of an engineer? It’s kind of a game changer for MMOs. Few other games have this kind of functionality. Particularly in a fantasy game. I’m sure the PvP elements will play out very similarly to PvP games like Team Fortress 2, but I can’t think of many games where a turret is applicable outside PvP.

I have to admit the game play doesn’t really appeal to me personally, so I haven’t played many turret classes in other games. For me it is very similar to relying on damage from my pet in a pet class, I prefer to be the one doing the damage.

However, a lot of people do like this sort of mechanic. A steady source of damage while you concentrate on means of slowing down, confusing, or crippling your enemy.

Not that turrets are the only thing the engineer seems to have going for it. There seem to be a lot of control mechanics. The flamethrower example that sucks people in, smoke or concussion grenades, the examples we see in the videos of stopping, tripping up, or chilling the advancing enemies.

To me it seems like the engineer may just be the most controlling of the professions released so far. At least in the examples I’ve seen there is quite a bit of crowd control.

Arenanet even draws attention to the similarity between the elementalist ability to switch between elements to draw on a larger pool of potential spells and the engineers backpacks. For me it’s hard to make real comparisons until we can play either class. Perhaps Arenanet should consider small tutorial videos on the skillbars of each profession. They all seem to have some unique and different usage which could be considered pretty confusing. Demo videos don’t often lend themselves to properly and explicitly explaining UI functions.

I guess what surprises me most about the engineer is how much of it comes straight out of Team Fortress 2. The Jump Shot itself is an exact duplicate of something you can do in TF2. Not that I’m complaining, it looks incredible and I can’t wait to try it.

I mean if you’re going to crib from other games, go big or go home.

Clearly some kind of healing turret.



  1. I plan on playing an engineer with little to no use of turrets. I hate being pinned down to one area and I share your sentiment about wanting to be the one doing damage. I might pack a healing turret though, that could be useful.

    • Just you wait though, the next thing out of arenanets mouths will be something along the lines of what they said about rangers. You’ll only be half a character without some turret in action, though i hope this is not the case.

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  3. This profession for me is like the guardian one before it. We kinda knew what it was going to be, but then Anet blows far beyond what we might have imagined for it. But I think a lot of people might become scared of this one cuz this is the first profession that is not at least partially based on the Tyria we know from GW1. All parts of the engineer are based on technology and tools invented long after the event we experienced in the first game. So I think there are going to be those people that are strongly against the engineer (at least until we get to play it and see more of how it plays. Kinda like how people had doubts about the thief until they saw gameplay from PAX East. Personally, I’ll probably make an engineer character but it’ll more than likely just be a side alt.

    • i think the more we learn about each profession, the more we get used to it. For the thief it was just a matter of getting used to the change. I doubt people still care about all the things they wanted to complain about just a couple months ago.

      I think you’re right about this going far beyond what we thought they were up to. very impressive.

  4. I agree with the tutorial bit. I feel like each profession is wildy different and switching between them is not going to be as intuitive as it has been in the past. Skills and styles aside, just the buttons are different.

    People are freaking out cause, like Msenge said, it’s new and scary to them. THey have a hard time really accepting that yes, it’s been 250 years and things are changing. SO be it.

    • The more i think about the tutorials, they’d be nice little videos they could promote the game with, and explain things in a more informative way. Tasha from RoO said something on twitter that got me thinking about it.

      Some people just want the exact same game as guild wars but with better graphics. I’ve learned this the hard way.

  5. I’ll keep mine short. I hate this class, and what it stands for. The ritualist could most probably had managed something like this in a spirit form instead they insist on bringing in populist ideas of guns, and bombs. A desperate attempt to bring in more gamers from outside mmos.
    Why not just bring in the commando? Oh! I get it, the jokes on me! There is a commano, ahhaha. sigh.
    Fail, and enough fail to make me wonder if I do want to play GW2.
    Still, having come this far Ill wait, maybe they’ll just be a pvp thing and I can sit in my own little version of GW2 away from it.
    The last profession had better be bloody brilliant.
    Hell, if they made these the enemy, they’d have a brilliant enemy that I am all ready to hate and chase down to hell. argh, stupid anet stupid.
    flashing lights, auto targeting turrents, mines for god sake. if i get blown up while I am wandering around exploring and having fun I’ll un-install this game instantagibly. keep it short? bah! to anet. bah. hate stares.
    They did the movies in char town too, was there any fantasy feeling there at all for anyone? no, its ugly, its tech, its just like this world, what do I want this for? anyway, you get my point.

    • They’ve talked about having technology and how time has passed and changed the world since they started making the game.

      to me the engineer just fits. and the play dynamic it sets up seems like its going to be really interesting and fun.

    • I get where you’re coming from, I really do…but how is being blown up by an exploding corpse (either minion bomb or explode corpse skills from GW1) while exploring any different from an actual bomb in GW2?

      To me Tyria certainly had high fantasy qualities to it. But expanding on technology in a fantasy setting is hardly immersion breaking. For centuries those individuals with little to no magical abilities saw the power those others had. Wouldn’t it make logical sense that they try looking for alternatives to magic to gain their own power? To me the idea of people w/o magic just sitting there accepting that they’ll never be able to throw fire, etc. is more immersion breaking. Now no longer will Tyrian heros be only those who have the gifts of magic, or strength of arms, etc. Tyria belongs to the tinkers now too.

      And as you can see from my above post I’m not all that excited about the engineer myself, but I can see how it fits the world.

  6. I am personally a huge fan of the engineer. The profession itself has already been seen in the original guild wars most obvious in the Asura but also in the dwarves and even with Canthan firework technicians.

    No for a bit of speculation we know that Anet has a secret unnamed project. I’m going to call it now and say it’s a first person shooter set in Tyria with modern technology called Battlefield Tyria: Charrmagedon.

    • yes we should all take a moment and recognize budger blackpowder for who he is. the first engineer.

      • Probably not the first. Maybe the first we saw in a combat situation. 😛

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