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Heart of Thorns Release

Arenanet has successfully released both Heart of Thorns and the Halloween festival 2015!  Make sure to check out the patch notes and get in the game to play the expansion.  Below are some tips to get you started:
  • If you want to start the Heart of Thorns story, simply select it from the Hero panel.  Head to the Silverwastes to start the prologue.
  • If you own a guild and have a leadership position, be sure to visit the new guild headquarters in Lion's Arch to upgrade your guild rank and claim a new Guild Hall!
  • If you're into player versus player, be sure to check out the new Strongholds gamemode, which is free for all!
  • If you're into world versus world, check out the new borderlands rotation and the new map, which will be exclusive for at least two weeks.
There are numerous other performance enhancements and game changes.  Get in game and check them out!

ArenaNet Announces 7 Million Guild Wars 2® Accounts, Launches new expansion Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns™

With Guild Wars 2 growing fast, the Heart of Thorns expansion is now live and continues the journey for players

BELLEVUE, Wash – Oct. 23, 2015: ArenaNet®, publisher and developer of the award-winning Guild Wars franchise, today launched Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns. The highly anticipated expansion to Guild Wars 2 is now live and available at digital and retail stores across North America and Europe. The expansion to the PC MMO comes less than three months after ArenaNet announced that the core Guild Wars 2 game is available to play for free, a move that has significantly grown the game’s player community. To highlight that growth, ArenaNet also released an infographic today announcing that Guild Wars 2 has reached more than 7 million player accounts globally.

“This has been a memorable year for ArenaNet and our Guild Wars 2 player community,” said Mike O’Brien, co-founder and president of ArenaNet. “We energized our fans in January with the announcement of Heart of Thorns as the first expansion to Guild Wars 2, and we’ve seen steady growth in our player base ever since. Our community is widely recognized as one of the best and friendliest in MMOs – many of our veteran players organized in starter zones to welcome new players the weekend we made the core Guild Wars 2 game free. We’re eager to see how our fast growing community continues to flourish, and we hope they’re eager to embrace where their Guild Wars 2 journey takes them next in Heart of Thorns.”

The new infographic from ArenaNet catalogues hard data and fun factoids that highlight the continuing popularity of Guild Wars 2 across the game, from open world players who focus on story content and world exploration to those who participate in the game’s increasingly competitive Player vs. Player (PvP) and World vs. World (WvW) scenes. ArenaNet recently announced the launch of a $400,000 Guild Wars 2 Pro League PvP tournament, launched in partnership with ESL, and the infographic highlights how PvP player participation has grown by 135 percent since last year. There is a statistic showing that 40 percent of max level players showed up in starter zones to welcome new players the day the core game went free, showcasing the friendly reputation of the player community. Topping it all is an astronomical figure – more than 1.4 billion hours – totaling the amount of time players have put into Guild Wars 2 since launch, nearly the same time modern humans have spent walking the earth.

Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns now extends the core game experience for this growing community as a paid expansion with a range of new content and features, including a unique new system called Masteries that redefines endgame character progression in Guild Wars 2. The expansion marks a couple of additional firsts for Guild Wars 2, introducing Guild Halls where guilds and groups of players can claim and customize a piece of the game world, and setting the stage for the first-ever Raids coming to the MMO and activating shortly after launch. As with the original Guild Wars 2, which delivered more than 40 major content updates without charging a subscription fee, players who purchase Heart of Thorns will have access to future releases coming to the expansion free of charge.

Heart of Thorns continues the Guild Wars 2 journey for players with the next chapter in their Personal Story saga, where armies in the game world led by players go deep into the heart of the Maguuma jungle to take on a sinister elder dragon. It also brings new game modes, features and game play improvements that touch on nearly every aspect of the game. There is an all-new profession called the revenant along with elite specializations that add new weapons and skills to every existing profession in the game. There is brand new competitive game content with an all new PvP mode called Stronghold and the massive new Desert Borderlands map for the game’s epic WvW warfare mode. Heart of Thorns also sets a strong foundation for endgame MMO content. Masteries introduce new ways to pursue skills and progress characters. Raids and new Fractal dungeons deliver extremely challenging group content. There are new ways for players to earn Legendary rewards. For competitive players, there are in-game systems and leaderboards such as PvP Leagues and Guild Challenger Leagues that pave the way for players to develop skills to compete at an elite level.

For a fun tour and an interactive trailer highlighting all of the features in Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns, please visit: www.guildwars2.com.

About Guild Wars 2® and Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns™
Guild Wars 2 is a visually stunning MMO, a living world that offers players the epic grandeur of a massive role playing environment combined with innovative combat mechanics, dynamic events and customized personal storytelling, as well as fast-paced competitive play with team-based PvP and massive World vs. World battles. Building on the success of Guild Wars, ArenaNet® has created an MMO that lets gamers play the way they want, while at the same time retaining the no-subscription-fee business model that made the originalGuild Wars so popular.

Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns is the first expansion to Guild Wars 2. Founded on the same gameplay philosophy as the core game, where the journey is the goal, Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns continues ArenaNet’s tradition of defying MMO conventions to fulfill the promise of what online worlds should be.
For more details, please visit www.guildwars2.com.
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The Shadow of the Mad King

Arenanet has announced that this years' Halloween event will be occurring 23 - 31 October.  The event will be a re-do of the 2012 event, which has not been run since then, as the previous two Halloween events had a different theme.  Highlights include the return of the dungeon fight against Mad King Thorn.  You can find the release page here.

Halloween takes place right after the launch of Heart of Thorns, which occurs on 22 October 2015.

The Shadow of the Mad King, our annual Halloween festival, returns for nearly two weeks of ghoulish capers, spooky fights, and holiday fun! Gather together with the citizens of Lion’s Arch to enjoy another year of tricks, treats, and terrible jokes.
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Last week, ArenaNet hosted a week-long series called Guild Week, where they discussed future updates to the Guild system once the GW2: Heart of Thorns expansion launches. If you missed the livestreams, you can check them out below:

Part One
Game Designer McKenna Berdrow, QA Embed Dara Potocska, and Gameplay Programmer Darren Mason talked about the Guild Initiative Headquarters, guild expeditions, guild missions, and the updated Guild panel.

Part Two
Gameplay Programmer Seth Chadwick, Environment Artist Jesse Christensen, and Dara unveiled the second of two guild-hall maps coming in Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns—the Lost Precipice.

Part Three
Rubi Bayer sat down with Game Designer Matthew Pennebaker to talk about the new scribing crafting discipline, and then Dara and Seth were joined by Game Director Colin Johanson to demonstrate how you can use decorations to let your creativity run wild in your guild hall and arena!

Part Four
Guest host Elizabeth Stewart brought Colin back to wrap up Guild Week and answer plenty of player questions.

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We’re excited to announce that GuildWars2Guru.com has been asked by ArenaNet to become the preferred destination for all Guild Wars 2 play-for-free players!

To accompany this announcement, we’ve opened a new sub-forum dedicated to play-for-free players so be sure to check it out! Feel free to introduce yourself, ask advice or just use it as a place to chat with other players about the game. You can, of course, use any other part of the forum, too!

If you happen to have any tips or advice for other play-for-free players, we’re currently looking for guide writers to help out. All you have to do is start a new thread!

Screenshot & Story Contest

To celebrate the news, we’re hosting a small contest here on Guru. While the contest isn’t exactly restricted to new play-for-free players, the theme does revolve around experiencing the game for the first time.

Head over to the the new play-for-free forum to learn more about the contest! Back to Top

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PAX stream liveblog

If you wish to follow the PAX stream, but cannot stream it, keep refreshing this page.  It will be updated with any information!

Summary:  Raids are coming to Guild Wars 2, instanced content for 10 people.  Guild Wars 2 is now free to play with minor restrictions.  F2P does not bring changes to the gem store or current release model.  New Living Story/releases directly after the launch of GW2:HoT.

20:04 - Event over.

20:02 - A new heart of thorns website is going live today.

20:01 - All existing players get the royal guard outfit for free.

19:58 - Free accounts cannot use map chat, and can only whisper once every 30 seconds.

19:58 - Free accounts cannot use the trading post besides BASIC items, and cannot do WvW until level 60.

19:58 - Free accounts have fewer character, bag, and bank slots until they buy.

19:57 - The new accounts that are free will have restrictions.

19:55 - There will be no more monetization as opposed to today.

19:52 - Guild Wars 2 is now free, starting today.

19:49 - Pink Day in LA will return with official support on 21 October 2015.

19:48 - Mike "Mo" O'Brian takes the stage.

19:47 - Live Release model will continue DIRECTLY after launch.  Raids will be added and become a centerpiece.

19:46 - First raid will be activated about two weeks after launch.

19:43 - Colin hints at raids having Legendary rewards... hints heavily at legendary armor and weapons.

19:42 - GW2 raiding has no attunement process.  "Walk to the door, and start instantly."

19:40 - A raid in GW2 is made up of the event system, so it will not only be linear raids.

19:40 - Raids are instanced, meant for 10 players.

19:39 - Raids are meant to be more difficult than dungeons, fractals, and open world content, but without headaches such as new gear treadmills, etc.

19:37 - Trailer for raids shows battles focused on single bosses and coordination puzzles.

19:35 - Raids are coming to GW2.

19:34 - Reiteration of non-unique items with the expansion, such as Fractals overhauls, Live content, PvP updates, etc.  All focused on the level 80 experience.

19:33 - Arenanet aims to not have any more levels or gear tiers in GW2.

19:32 - GW2 has sold 5 million copies in the non-China market.

19:31 - Release date really is 23 October 2015.

19:31 - Colin Johansson, Game Director, comes up on stage. Back to Top

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Heart of Thorns releases 23 October, 2015

Arenanet has announced the Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns will release on 23 October 2015.  To learn more about the expansion and to pre-purchase, check out the official website.

Do not forget to join us tomorrow for coverage of the incoming PAX announcement, in which Arenanet will detail surprises and show what the "challenging group challenges" actually is.

Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns launches October 23, 2015. Pre-purchase bonuses available now!
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A new beta event has been scheduled for the weekend of September 4th, 2015. This event runs similarly to some of the more recent tests that've been held, mostly adding in the newly announced elite specializations that have been announced since (most notably the berserker and upcoming thief spec). Stronghold will also be available to test in addition to some light story and map content to avoid spoilers, along with the chance to play in the core game if you're really wanting to save yourself for the official release.

Progress also will not be wiped at the conclusion of this weekend, so it's your chance to commit to a beta character until the expansion's launch sometime this year.

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source: https://forum-en.gui...rst#post5414083

08/25/15 August 25 Release Notes
World Polish
  • Fields of Ruin:
    • Fixed several bugs in the Ogre Wars meta-event that could cause the event chain to stall or lock.
  • Character Select:
    • Double-clicking an empty character slot or empty beta character slot will start the associated character-creation process.
    • Added and updated tooltips to reflect these changes.
Profession Skills
  • Fixed a bug that prevented minions from quickly targeting your attack target.
  • Arcane Brilliance: Fixed a bug that caused this skill’s blast finisher to occur at your target’s location instead of your own.
  • Soothing Power: Updated the tooltip for this trait to reflect the actual effectiveness increase of 100%.
  • Bombs: Increased the radius of bomb skills with a radius of 180 to 240. This change includes bombs created by the traits Evasive Powder Keg and Autodefense Bomb Dispenser.
  • Elixir Tool Belt Skills: Fixed a bug that caused these skills to have a longer recharge than intended when used underwater.
  • Toss Elixir X (Underwater):
    • Increased the recharge to 120 seconds to match the terrestrial version of the skill.
    • Fixed a bug that prevented this skill from applying might when using the trait HGH under some circumstances.
    • Fixed a bug that prevented this skill from being affected by the recharge reduction provided by the trait HGH.
  • Toss Elixir H (Underwater): Fixed errors with the skill-fact display from the traits HGH and Alchemical Tinctures.
  • Toss Elixir S (Underwater): Fixed a bug that prevented this skill from being affected by the recharge reduction provided by the trait HGH.
  • Rocket Kick: Updated the burning skill fact to reflect the actual amount of burning applied.
  • Healing Mist: Fixed a bug that prevented this skill from gaining the benefits from the trait HGH.
  • Hidden Flask:
    • Fixed skill-fact errors with this trait when equipped with the trait HGH.
    • Fixed incorrect recharge of this trait while equipped with the trait HGH.
  • Optimized Activation: Fixed a bug that caused this trait to activate on canceled tool-belt skills.
  • HGH: Fixed a bug that caused this trait to apply an incorrect number of might stacks for some thrown elixir skills.
  • Over Shield: Fixed an incorrect protection-duration skill fact for this trait. This trait now properly updates skill facts for the shield skills it affects.
  • Aim-Assisted Rocket: The rocket fired by this trait can now activate the effects of the trait Shrapnel.
  • Experimental Turrets: Fixed a bug that prevented turrets summoned by the Supply Crate elite skill from functioning with this trait.
  • “Retreat!”: This shout can now be used while airborne.
  • Purging Flames: Updated the underwater version of this skill to be self-targeted instead of ground targeted.
  • Sanctuary: Updated the underwater version of this skill to be self-targeted instead of ground targeted.
  • Sword of Justice (Command): Fixed a bug that caused this skill to sometimes fail if the player was using the trait Expeditious Spirit.
  • Zealous Blade:
    • Fixed a bug that caused this trait to incorrectly grant healing for scepter skills.
    • Fixed a bug that caused this trait to fail to grant healing for some greatsword skills.
  • Courageous Return: Fixed a bug that caused this trait to fail when the player was also using the trait Indomitable Courage.
  • Zealot’s Embrace: Fixed a bug that required this skill to fully recharge if the cast was interrupted by the target moving behind the caster.
  • Power Break—Mantra of Concentration: Fixed a bug that caused this skill to apply more than the listed number of stability stacks.
  • The Prestige: Fixed a bug that caused this skill to fail to go on recharge if interrupted by effects such as Shocking Aura.
  • Veil: Fixed a bug that caused this skill to apply stealth for longer than its listed value.
  • Phantasmal Warden: Fixed a bug that caused this phantasm to incorrectly activate the trait Fencer’s Finesse.
  • Desperate Decoy: Fixed a bug that caused this trait to have a recharge longer than its listed value.
  • Illusionary Riposte: Fixed a bug that caused this skill to fail to summon a clone while the player had a scepter equipped as their main-hand weapon.
  • Ether Clone: Fixed a bug that caused the clone summoned by this skill to have no equipped off-hand.
  • Ineptitude: Fixed a crash bug.
  • Mender’s Purity:
    • Fixed a bug that caused this trait to fail under some circumstances.
    • Fixed a bug that caused this trait to require Mantra of Resolve to fully recharge when triggered.
  • Grasping Dead (PvP):
    • Fixed a bug that prevented this skill from gaining the benefits of the trait Lingering Curse.
    • Fixed an incorrect number of bleeding stacks on the skill fact for this skill.
  • Signet of Spite: Fixed a bug that caused this skill to inflict less bleeding than indicated in its tooltip.
  • Ritual of Life: Fixed a bug that prevented this trait’s recharge from being reduced by the effects of Vampiric Rituals.
  • Bitter Chill: Updated skill facts for necromancer skills that are influenced by this trait.
  • Plague Sending: This trait will no longer attempt to activate Plague Signet if the player is either out of range or does not have a line of sight to the target.
  • Ambidexterity: Fixed a bug that prevented this trait from reducing the recharge of Throw Torch.
  • “Strength of the Pack!”: Fixed a bug that prevented this skill from displaying the correct icon.
  • Swoop: Fixed a bug that caused this skill to trigger leap finishers twice. This skill now only triggers a leap finisher when the character jumps toward their target.
  • Whirling Defense: This skill now triggers multiple whirl finishers over its duration instead of just one.
  • Healing Spring: This skill now also heals your pet when it is initially activated. Activating or unslotting Healing Spring will destroy all previously existing, untriggered Healing Springs.
  • Enlargement: Fixed a bug in which this trait’s active skill showed an incorrect recharge when using the trait Brutish Seals. The correct recharge with the trait is 48 seconds.
  • Trappers Respite: Fixed a bug that prevented this trait from being affected by the recharge reduction provided by the trait Deadly Trapper.
  • Thick Skin: Fixed a bug that caused this trait to provide an incorrect amount of armor per level.
  • Versatile Power: Added a 5-second internal cooldown to the might gain from this trait.
  • Warrior’s Sprint: Fixed a bug that caused this trait to remove immobilization too slowly, preventing Bull’s Charge from moving properly.
  • Bladetrail: Fixed a bug that required this skill to fully recharge if the cast was interrupted by the target moving behind the caster.
Structured Player vs. Player
  • The Practice button has been removed from the PvP panel. Custom arenas can still be accessed using the Game Browser tab on the left-hand side of the PvP panel.
  • Ranked Arena is now restricted to players rank 20 and above.
  • New players will no longer be required to complete the PvP tutorial before gaining access to the Heart of the Mists.
World vs. World
  • Fixed a bug that allowed Superior Arrow Cart and Guild Arrow Cart skills to ignore line-of-sight checks.
  • Alpine Borderlands: Fixed a bug that allowed players to repeatedly drain the citadel supply depot if they were carrying more than 15 supply.
  • Edge of the Mists: Fixed a bug that allowed players to delay the Mechanical Siege Devourer transform by using items like tonics and instruments.
  • Service NPCs have been switched to a noncombatant team to prevent them from being killed through various exploits.
  • Players will now be killed if they travel too far outside of the playable space on the maps.
New Items and Promotions
Our biggest anniversary sale continues throughout the coming weeks. Check the Black Lion Trading Company Gem Store for daily updates!
  • A new Wedding Attire Outfit is available in the Style category of the Gem Store. Uniquely customized for every race, you can pick up an account unlock for all of them for 1000 gems.
  • The Romantic Gift Pack containing a Bouquet of Roses and a Box of Chocolates is available in the Gem Store. Treat yourself or gift it to a friend for 400 gems.
  • For six days only, the White Feather Wings Set has returned to the Style category of the Gem Store for 500 gems.
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Meet the Berserker: Warrior’s Elite Specialization

Arenanet has revealed the details on the Warrior specialization in the Heart of Thorns expansion, The Berserker.  The Berserker uses primal rage to turn enemies into projectiles and manipulates adrenaline to activate powerful skills.  You can read more on the official blog.

After building enough adrenaline, the berserker can enter berserk mode. This mode dramatically changes the berserker’s adrenaline bar. The entire bar changes from a three-tiered bar consisting of 30 adrenaline into a single merged adrenaline bar consisting of only 10 adrenaline. With this new adrenaline bar, the berserker gains access to special “primal” burst skills. These special weapon burst skills have lower recharges than their nonberserk counterparts, allowing them to be used much more often in conjunction with the shortened adrenaline bar.
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Glint Revealed

Arenanet has posted a teaser for the Revenant elite specialization, Glint.  Choosing Glint will allows you to add Glint to the spirit roster and use skills based on Glint's magic and abilities.  Arenanet is expected to provide a full release sometime this week.  You can see the teaser here.

She was as old as the Shiverpeaks, older than the gods.

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