Developer ArenaNet is working on Guild Wars 2, the online role-playing sequel to the excellent Guild Wars. Aside from revealing information with GameSpot, the developer is also looking to give a behind-the-scenes look at the game's development and to tease out more of the game's lore, with an ongoing blog. Writer Dave Campbell explains.
GameSpot: We understand that ArenaNet is unveiling a new blog for Guild Wars 2. What kind of content will be going into the blog? Who will contribute to the blog?
David Campbell: We’re launching a new blog that will cover not just Guild Wars 2, but all things ArenaNet. I’ll be the primary blogger guy, but we’re going to have loads of special guest stars like studio head Mike O’Brien, GW2 designer Eric Flannum, legendary game writer Jeff Grubb, and other bright and talented people. The blog is a great way for ArenaNet to communicate directly with our fans in an informal way. We’re going to pack it with interviews, concept art, videos, news, and whatever else we can think up. For some reason, I think moa birds, the jumbo flightless birds from Guild Wars, are hilarious, so I’ll try to sneak them into the blog as much as possible without getting fired.
GS: What value will the blog provide players outside of the content revealed beyond the Web site?
DC: The blog is designed to offer a more casual, behind-the-scenes look at ArenaNet as a game studio rather than focusing specifically on one product. Don’t get me wrong, we’ll be talking about Guild Wars and Guild Wars 2 a lot, but the blog will also give players a peek at the creative process and the human beings behind the game. Also, we have a lot of talented people and lots of opinions, so the blog will be a way to provide insight into side projects, hobbies, and other stuff that may also be of interest to our fans. It also gives us an opportunity to reply real time to issues raised by our community.
GS: Can you give us some hints on how information on Guild Wars 2 will be unveiled over time?
DC: Well we’re going to start going into lot more details about game mechanics--combat, dynamic events, and personal story. There’s a ton more about the world of Guild Wars 2 that we need to share, but we felt it was important to get some of our key design ideas out there and explain how we’re going to deliver on them.
GS: How far back does the storyline in both games go? Is there a bible that the team uses to keep track of all the lore?
DC: The lore for Guild Wars 2 is built upon the world established in the original games, but since the sequel takes place in the future, it allows us to make some pretty radical changes to the world while still retaining that unique Guild Wars vibe. It’s all part of a mad, ambitious master plan. We do have a lore bible and internal wiki resources that we frequently refer to, but ArenaNet is a pretty tight team, so if we ever have any questions, we can just bug a designer or one of the writers. There is no shortage of lore experts around here!
GS: Is there anything else you'd like to add about the blog?
DC: We’re kicking off the blog with a special post from studio head Mike O’Brien explaining our design goals for Guild Wars 2. Mike lays out the creative vision of ArenaNet and the design philosophy behind Guild Wars 2 in bold terms. I think it pretty clearly states who ArenaNet is and what types of games we want to make.