Guild Wars 2's First Expansion Heart of Thorns Announced

Enter the Heart of Maguuma.

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Guild Wars 2 developer ArenaNet has announced Heart of Thorns, the first expansion pack for the MMO.

The expansion will let players explore the Heart of Maguuma, a brand new jungle area. The Heart of Maguuma is made up of three distinct biomes, and ArenaNet says it's one of the largest areas it ever built.

Guild Wars 2 game director Colin Johanson announced the news at the company's "Guild Wars 2: Beyond the Point of No Return" panel at PAX South.

The expansion will add the Mastery system, an endgame, account-based PvP progression system. Players will earn mastery points as they explore the map, complete missions, and other activities, which they'll be able to spend them on abilities available across characters for your PVP account. For example, players will be able to buy the hand gliding ability, and improve it to reach hard to reach locations.

Johanson also introduces Specializations, which will give existing classes access to new skills and weapons, the new Revenant profession, a new World vs. World Borderland map, and the competitive PvP Stronghold mode, where players fight for control of supplies, recruit troops, and attack the enemy stronghold.

Players in the audience were especially excited to hear about the addition of Guild Halls, a space for your guild to meet, progress your Guild Hall, and organize for guild missions.

For more on Guild Wars 2, check out our previous coverage.

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

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Avatar image for Hurvl
Hurvl

It's been out since August 2012 and it's only now getting its first expansion? That's as slow as WoW or even slower and I've heard several people of the internet complain about the slow release of expansions for that game. Not that expansions are the only bit of new content you get in MMO's, but still, I'm surprised GW 2 hasn't got an expansion until now.

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spikepigeo

<< LINK REMOVED >> The living story up until this point has been a steady stream of new content enough to qualify for at least an expansion.

Avatar image for Hurvl
Hurvl

<< LINK REMOVED >><< LINK REMOVED >> Then that's alright. More than 2½ years seems awfully long, even for an MMO with GW's payment model. People complain about DLC and want the return of the old big expansions, but it's good that MMO's don't need to conform to just one method of delivering new content. "Small and more often" seems better like a better fit for MMO's than "big and 1-2 years between releases", because people will chug through whatever you give them in ludicrous speed and then shout "all done, now I'm bored!".

Avatar image for Zombunny
Zombunny

Without telling us more this just seems like a living story update

Avatar image for Dav_id83
Dav_id83

Just picked this up for £8.75 which was a steal good job I waited because I was going to buy it at £19 last month downloaded installed going to playing it in a few mins looking forward to it, I've watched my friend play and it's massive

Avatar image for Karmazyn
Karmazyn

I wish I had more time to play this awesome game. I have not touched it in months. Everyone must be max level by now which makes me less eager to play this. What chances my new mage would have? Probably none.

Avatar image for spikepigeo
spikepigeo

<< LINK REMOVED >> Ummm, don't let any of what you just said actually discourage you from getting back in. This isn't EVE Online. You're not going to be at any huge disadvantage. If you enjoy the core gameplay, you'll be right as rain, no matter what.

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INasko

<< LINK REMOVED >> in this game, the level mainly has meaning in PvE. When comparing with others - In PvP you are up-scaled to level 80. In structured PvP, you have access to all the gear for free, in WvW strength is in numbers and organization/commanders, not that much in gear. So don't mind your level just play what you like.

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Skagrins

<< LINK REMOVED >> who is everyone and what chances are you talking about? I have 2 level 80 characters and am looking forward to leveling up a fresh one just to experience the updated leveling system. This is the core of the game - it is not a gear rush level cap game. It is more like customization, building something that everyone has into something unique. So go ahead, level up that mage and have fun.

Avatar image for Frozzik
Frozzik

Seriously cannot wait for this. I absolutely love GW2.

One of my favourite games of all time. Don't care what the haters say, it's a brilliant game, even if you just play one char to 80 its well worth the purchase price.

I'm always jumping back in and instantly become hooked again.

Avatar image for nikolaculpa
NikolaCulpa

Don't know if I'll get it right away, need to get a new CPU, and I haven't played GW2 in years. I'll have to start a new character, as well, since my file was hacked...
Only way I'd buy it right away would be if they released it on PS4, but since that probably won't happen, it'll have to wait until 2016. I'm wanting to get a CPU by Xmas this year so that I can run Win10 and play some Rise of the Tomb Raider (since Win10 will be able to play XBONE games). I miss playing this game, but my PS3 and PS4 have been my priority lately.

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jgn77

Oh we love F2P and B2P....first expansion will come 3-4 years after release? Oh that sounds like a great model. What have people been doing for 3 years? Playing other games. The B2P model sucks cause content updates are not a priority.

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sawworm

<< LINK REMOVED >> You know nothing, << LINK REMOVED >> Snow.

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Senior_Rosa

<< LINK REMOVED >> You just made yourself a fool in front of everybody.

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Ortnit

<< LINK REMOVED >> You do realize that Arenanet gave us new content every ~2 Weeks with Season 1 and now every 1-2 months with Season2 of the living story? Hell, they destroyed a whole city just for the story. We got more than 1 or 2 Add-Ons worth of content over the last few years without paying anything extra...

Avatar image for Leozaur
Leozaur

<< LINK REMOVED >> I generally agree with you, living story is fine I guess for some people but for not story-oriented players it's been almost empty times. They started great with new zone, very good new dungeon and guild missions, and such... Then it went silent for me: I wasn't interested in story and there was nothing else. Guild halls should've been there ages ago IMO, like in the first half-year after release. Probably going to give it another shot when this goes live.

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xSagez

<< LINK REMOVED >> You really don't know or you just that clueless?

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surferosh

New Skills Please !!!!!



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GM_Strykr

soooo Guild Wars 2 didn't come with guild halls? Did ANet forget that they even made GW1 when making this game?

Avatar image for tenryuu_kantai
Tenryuu_Kantai

<< LINK REMOVED >> Guild Wars 2 seems like a game made for people who didn't enjoy GW1. I really prefer GW1 classes, PvP... even armor and art style. But alas, not enough people playing.

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lorider25

Nice, been waiting for the expansion. Don't know if I'll get it right away though, Kind of busy with other games.

Avatar image for edant79
edant79

I still got alot of questions, but so far it sounds like they're trying to tackle everything the players have been asking for.


Of course, you can't please every spoiled dork and nerd, but I'm looking forward to the new content.

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some-_1

"The expansion will add the Mastery system, an endgame, account-based PvP progression system. Players will earn mastery points as they explore the map, complete missions, and other activities, which they'll be able to spend them on abilities available across characters for your PVP account. For example, players will be able to buy the hand gliding ability, and improve it to reach hard to reach locations"


I think you mean PvE - Mastery System is PvE only, not PvP...

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BSC14

I dislike GW2 and what's taken so long for the first expansion anyway?

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Hippystank

I'm pumped for this!

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dostunuz

Too little, too late.

Avatar image for voods07
voods07

Yawn.


On to more Warlords of Draenor.

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Crypt_mx

You really can't compare no monthly fee vs monthly fee MMO's.

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spikepigeo

<< LINK REMOVED >> You can, however, compare their visuals, at least. Say what you will about GW2, but it blows WoW out of the water visually. No denying that, no matter how much of a WoW fan you are.

Avatar image for SerOlmy
SerOlmy

Kinda excited now. I capped out on several characters and after maining my necro for 400+ hours I finally got bored. Fractals and WvW just aren't enough at the lvl cap. Here is hoping they release some fun PvE end-game content. I will probably get it regardless, I really enjoyed the game.

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grin89

wish it had mounts and 2 opposing factions instead of the wvw, I'll be picking this up though regardless.

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Just got the base game in the deal. £12 for the deluxe version. HELL YEAH!

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Rherian

<< LINK REMOVED >> me tooo i got it for 10 bucks yesss!!!

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hellgast0

<< LINK REMOVED >> Have fun!

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Zombunny

As a Gw2 player i'm not excited yet they need to release more info

Avatar image for scowny97
scowny97

<< LINK REMOVED >> Really. I think pretty much all the fanbase has boarded the hype train.


<< LINK REMOVED >>

Avatar image for Zombunny
Zombunny

<< LINK REMOVED >><< LINK REMOVED >> Nah man its just after guild wars 1 with its expansions we just expect more especially with paid content, they really haven't shown much just a few addons to things we already have in other mmos, sure they mention new npc races, but a new player race no....

Avatar image for scowny97
scowny97

<< LINK REMOVED >><< LINK REMOVED >> Fair enough. As someone who never played Guild Wars 1, I can't say much but I am just excited to finally be getting an expansion.

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Zefur

Wow, this game has been out for a while and it's just getting it's first expansion?

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Stebsis

<< LINK REMOVED >> They have released crapload of content in between though

Avatar image for zefur
Zefur

<< LINK REMOVED >><< LINK REMOVED >> Nice, so would you say that the game is "worth it"?

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koospetoors

<< LINK REMOVED >><< LINK REMOVED >> Its great if you enjoy MMO's or want a more chilled online RPG experience, also the only MMO where I bothered to try fully explore the huge world and take in all the sights since the game actually rewards you for it (and its just really beautiful anyway)


I hear even with all the content updates the endgame is still rather lacking though, if that sort of thing is important to you. Could be wrong though

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Frozzik

Even if you play one char to 80 then never play again it's worth it. It's a great game with lots to do.

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BrunoBRS

<< LINK REMOVED >><< LINK REMOVED >> definitely, especially since it's 75% off this weekend and you don't really have to pay anything after that (other than the expansion's box, of course, but that's going to be a while still)

Avatar image for Sanligo
Sanligo

<< LINK REMOVED >><< LINK REMOVED >> If you get it within 24 hours or so its $10. I'd say you will get your moneys worth.

Avatar image for Stebsis
Stebsis

<< LINK REMOVED >><< LINK REMOVED >> I'd say so, I even paid full price, though I haven't played in 2 years now but I've followed this somewhat so I know they've been putting out stuff, seasonal events etc. in there all the time. I was just looking for a good game to pass time with, got some 200 hours of playtime if I remember correctly and then I just felt like I got what I wanted out of it and moved on. Not sure how much you're looking to spend time with an MMO or what you want out of it exactly, but personally this was the first MMO I actually spent real time with and had a blast

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