Guild Wars® 2 to Launch Major Updates to PvP on Eve of First World Tournament Series

New features to encourage more fans to participate in high-level competitive play will launch the same week ArenaNet’s MMO crowns its first global PvP champions

NCSOFT® and ArenaNet™, publisher and developer of the acclaimed Guild Wars franchise, today announce they will be releasing significant updates to the player vs. player (PvP) mode in Guild Wars 2. The studio is adding and overhauling game features in the MMO that are meant to pave the way for more high-level competitive play.  This includes big upgrades to features such as matchmaking, player ranking systems and map selection, giving players more opportunities to find level opponents and hone their skills. The updates are slated for release on Tuesday 2nd December.

The release marks one of two major milestones in early December for ArenaNet and demonstrates how it’s embracing the increasingly popular competitive play modes in Guild Wars 2. On 5th December, ArenaNet and KongZhong, publisher of Guild Wars 2 in China, will host the inaugural World Tournament Series (WTS) Championships in Beijing. Top teams from North America, Europe and China will vie for $50,000 USD in prizes during the live event, which is being televised on Chinese video game network GTV and livestreamed globally on Twitch.  Fans around the world will watch the first-ever Guild Wars 2 global PvP champions crowned in the same week that they’re given better-than-ever building blocks to try their own hand at becoming high-level competitors.

One of the biggest building blocks they’ll get is an overhaul to the matchmaking algorithm. When the updates launch in December, PvP matchmaking in Guild Wars 2 will use Glicko2 ratings, a widely accepted player skill evaluation method, in addition to other factors such as player rank and team party size. The updates also introduce a dishonour system, where behaviour such as quitting matches mid-stream will affect a player’s rating. With these changes affecting leaderboards, ArenaNet will launch a new Ladder Formula and conduct a test season in mid-December, an exercise that could be a step towards organised league play.  Other big changes coming with the update include new PvP modes that encourage practice skirmishes, such as an unranked “Practice” mode where players can hot-join to quickly sharpen their skills.

ArenaNet is publishing a series of blog posts – running from today until the end of this week – detailing each PvP update as well as outlining the upcoming Ladder Formula Test Season at www.guildwars2.com.

In today’s announcement blog post, John Corpening, Associate Game Director on Guild Wars 2 at ArenaNet, said: “we are very excited to bring you all of these updates to PvP because they further enhance the experience and commitment to competitive gaming that makes Guild Wars 2 stand out among MMOs”.

“This year we worked with our community to bring you the ‘Tournament of Legends’ as a path to Legendary weapons, the ‘Tournament of Glory’ to earn unique skins through skill based play in PvP, the ESL GO4 tournaments where players can earn weekly cash prizes and an even bigger monthly cash prizes and the World Tournament Series, where the very best players of each region can become legends on the international stage”, Corpening continued.

Announced in August of this year, the WTS is the first cash-prize tournament for Guild Wars 2, with $150,000 USD at stake over the course of three championship tournaments planned for 2014-2015 in China, North America and Europe.  The event in Beijing represents the first championships and is the culmination of months of competition that began with an open tournament inviting all players. The field was whittled down to four finalists after WTS Invitational Qualifiers in October – two teams from the host region China and one team each from North America and Europe.

 

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Details for the 2014 Guild Wars 2 WTS Championships in Beijing are as follows:

5th December, 2014
10:00 CET (09:00 GMT)

Finalists
North America: The Abjured – Phantagram, Wakkey, Magic Toker, Ostrich Eggs, Five Gauge
Europe: The Civilized Gentlemen – Helseth, Tage, Sizer, ROM, Denshee
China: Team Prime – Fuctin, Maw, Red, Elf, Dong Cheng
China: Team SALA – Nocturne, November, Honeyzz, Crazythree, Jiazi

Livestream:  www.twitch.tv/guildwars2

More information is available on ArenaNet’s official page for the World Tournament Series at: https://www.guildwars2.com/en/events/world-tournament-series/.

About Guild Wars 2
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, NCSOFT and game developer ArenaNet™ have created a MMO that lets gamers play the way they want, while at the same time retaining the no-subscription-fee business model that made the original Guild Wars so popular. For more details on Guild Wars 2, please visit www.guildwars2.com.