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Guild Wars 2 – Thoughts On Raid Mechanics: Wing 1 To Wing 2

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I’ve beaten the first raid wing quite a little while ago but never really commented on it. So this post will be about the first wing, what I’ve learned in a nutshell, and about raid wing two and how it changes the way teams play it out mechanics-wise.

Raid Wing One

In raid wing one we had a bunch of things we learned such as:

  • The tank is the person with the highest toughness
  • Slick shoes is great for bosses like Gorseval
  • Utility Chronomancer is amazing for quickness and alacrity to shave time

Then there was the boss mechanics such as Vale Guardian landfall that at least four people had to be on to prevent party wipes, Gorseval’s prison mechanic which required people to keep moving and not into another person’s path to prevent getting get encased, & Sabetha’s flak attack which targets the farthest person from her. What’s interesting was that each of these boss fights in raid wing one went from being less mechanically dependent to more dependent for individuals in the squad.

For Vale Guardian, you needed melee (for the most part) to not stand on blue teleports, some knockbacks for seekers and at least 4 people always going for green landfall. Nothing really to hard about that. The tank would just need to move the boss accordingly so the squad didn’t eat lava floor and the landfall would be in the right area. You’d also need good breaks which a power Revenant with staff and another person could easily fill. Gorseval required 3 people to have cripple, chill, or immobilize to slow down Charged Souls, a tank to lead Gorseval around, ideally someone to pull in spirits when going to a wall, and one or two people clearing spectral orbs so the squad can move around to avoid getting damage debuffed. The dependency on the entire group falls with getting to the wall where the tank was pulling so that Enraged and Angered spirits could be cleaved out and to avoid the Ghostly Prison mechanic which slows DPS.

Sabetha required a lot more group dependency on the mechanics. You have two to four jumpers going up to destroy cannons but the squad needs to be aware that almost anyone can get the green bomb which you need to throw onto a pad where the jumper needs to be. Since there’s four pads, everyone needs to be aware of where they should throw if they get the bomb. There’s also timed bombs where if you’re the person closest to Sabetha you get from time to time. You need to move yourself out of the group to avoid doing damage to every one but you also have to not hit jumpers and the person who’s on flak duty if possible.

In all three fights you can have a few people purely DPS and have some players handle the other mechanics such as tanking or flak shots. So far, raid wing two sticks with the idea of progressively adding group dependency for mechanics.

Raid Wing Two

I’m on Slothasor right now and I have to say this fight is mechanically intensive for everyone. I personally feel like this fight is really easy but it’s hard at the same time. It’s really easy because I find it’s very simple on what your squad has to do to beat Slothasor. It can be hard because depending on how people handle the mechanics, execution on what to do can be a nightmare.

Slothasor introduces mechanics that requires everyone to do well. And I mean everyone. There is a random Fixation mechanic where Slothasor will target a specific player as the tank. This changes from time to time so people need to be aware when they’re the tank and move the boss accordingly. There’s also a Volatile Poison mechanic every 25 seconds where a person will be targeted and has a few seconds to drop a growing poison field in an area away from where the squad is going. All the while you’re traversing a poison floor that the pathing can be made via an imbued mushroom that turns an ally into a Slubling who can eat a path way. The Slubling ally can be hit with spells so you have to be careful where you cleave and so on. These few mechanics alone makes this fight easy or hard depending if people are aware of the icons on their heads and if they can move to the proper locations in time. Essentially, every need to learn how to tank and move the boss properly like with Vale Guardian & Gorseval and move dangerous stuff out of the group like with Sabetha. So if players have never done these mechanics on these fights because they let other people handle it or don’t know how to move a boss, it can get really hard. There’s even a small orange circle AoE that appears at people’s feet; 3 of them are placed based on your location. The squad needs to collectively move after 2 seconds to reduce the spreading of that AoE. If hit, you take substantial damage and are knocked down for 5 seconds per circle. This orange circle mechanic is similar to Gorseval’s prison mechanic and Vale Guardian’s blue teleport field mechanics where getting hit will result in a loss in DPS. Of course you still have other mechanics specific people can do such as clearing path, reflects and pulling/cleaving enemy slublings out.

Personally, I like Slothasor this way. It shows who needs to work on what. Well, I think everyone can work on something; it’s the first week it’s out after all. However, for some players it may be more than the next person. Slothasor also rewards squads are on point and who truly understand the mechanics of the fight. It may seem easier to some groups because of the experience gained with raid wing one, the group understanding the mechanics, and understanding the professions they’re playing to optimal potency. For some groups it’ll be harder because they need to learn the mechanics, to survive a lot better, to watch their positioning more, and the need to get the best out of their professions which they may or may have not been doing before.

I’m hoping the rest of raid wing two will be like this. I haven’t done research or looked at much outside of Slothasor; I’ve heard some things about the other bosses like the second one is easy and so on. It’ll be interesting to see what they will be like. For now, I’ll be doing some Slothasor homework this weekend and brushing up on mechanics.

Guild Wars 2 – Imbuing Life To Dungeons

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So I’ve talked about starting to write on Mattsta.Ninja recently and my first real post came out earlier this week! The post is about dungeons and how I feel that dungeons need a bit of a look over.

To summarize the post: without friends or guild mates, it’s exceedingly hard to queue up for dungeons. With the exception of Ascalonian Catacombs and maybe Twilight Arbor. Also, for dungeon specific rewards and tokens, it’s way easier and quicker to complete the dungeon’s PvP track then to actually run the dungeon multiple times. I also state that I think ArenaNet shouldn’t have crippled dungeon rewards just to promote other modes they’ll focus on in the future like raids and fractals; even if they don’t develop further for dungeons.

Worked quite a bit on that post so if you’d like to take a look at it in full, you can visit this link!

Guild Wars 2 Commander Squad UI Gets A Buff

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Colin Johanson, Hugh Norfolk and Joshua Davis sat down at TwitchCon to show off the new Squad UI for commanders that’s coming to Guild Wars 2. This Squad UI is pretty sweet. The image above doesn’t portray the final iteration but shows you the functionality that will be part of the UI. You can use this UI for WvW and PvE for raids & guild missions. Here are the UI features:

  • Ready Up functionality
  • The ability to split into sub squads
  • Supply info (main squad & sub squads)
  • Open, Close or Invite only functionality
  • Up to 50 viewable players in the UI
  • View of squad member health bars (that are in proximity)

Definetly a big plus to the current UI and will be very helpful in both WvW and PvE!

Mordrem Assaults Starting Next Week & More On Raids

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Those of you that have been a bit bored waiting for the release of Heart of Thorns are in luck! Starting September 10th at 9 am Pacific to September 13th at 9 am Pacific there will be Mordrem assaults in Brisban Wildlands, Kessex Hills, and Diessa Plateau. This must be a bit of a throwback for those of you who were around for Clockwork Chaos. In this event, you’ll be earning Mordrem Blooms. You can trade these blooms in to the the Durmand Priory for some rewards. For you new players reading this it’s recommended to be at least level 18 to participate in these events.

Finally more on raids. This blog post generally detailed how raid will work and some decisions they made such as 10 man groups for raids was the perfect size for making it challenging and still offering the ability to coordinate properly. What was an interesting point in this post is that we might be using different armor sets, weapons and traits we never used before or haven’t considered in a long time for raiding which will be great considering the meta in PvE is pretty much geared towards doing damage.

Everything else about raids in the post were details I covered already so you can read about it here or watch the video below!

Heart of Thorns: The Confusion About Masteries For Raids

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So there’s been a bit of talk about raids lately with the announcement of raids from PAX Prime last weekend. A lot of people are excited that they’re coming to Guild Wars 2. The main confusion I keep hearing about raids is that the mastery system acts as an attunement process. I’d like to share my opinion on this real quick.

So at the GW2 panel at PAX Prime 2015 it was said that there will be no attunement process for Guild Wars 2 raids. An attunement process for raids, in the traditional MMO game sense, is a set of challenges that a player must complete in order to be eligible to participate in a raid. Where the confusion lies is that certain mastery lines (at certain tiers) will factor in as necessities for some boss mechanics. For example, we saw the gliding mastery line’s “updraft” needed on at least half the raid members for one boss.

Some players are viewing that the mastery system is the attunement process for raids. To this I say yes and no. No because of the traditional definition. You are not impeded with challenges in order to raid. However, I say yes too because it does block raid progression. If not enough people have the right mastery tiers completed in order to continue the raid, the raid stops there till some players get said mastery tiers or if they swap someone else in. If the raid can’t continue, then there’s no real point in starting it in the first place (other than to see how far you can get or for some rewards).

In conclusion, there is no attunement process for raids but there is a progress buffer if you do not have the correct mastery lines or tiers in order to raid. I suggest if you are serious about raiding to start upgrading your gliding and mushroom mastery lines come HoT launch a bit as those are the primary ones I believe will be needed for the raid in Heart of Thorns. Also, ArenaNet is releasing the first wing of the raid a few weeks after the HoT launch. This is to gives players a few weeks to get some mastery lines up to snuff.