sPvP State of the Game focuses on Leaderboards, Custom Arenas, and Spectator mode very soon.
Guild Wars 2 Guru hosts a sPvP State of the Game livestream where ArenaNet developers are joined by some of the members of the sPvP community to talk about where sPvP is currently and where it is going. In this SotG, Jonathan Sharp, Tyler Bearce and Karl McLain from ArenaNet talked about everything from balance to upcoming features including the hot topics: Leaderboards, Custom Arenas, and Spectator Mode.
Leaderboards are coming very soon. In fact, they are so close they might be pushed live even before the big content patch on March 26th (though if any issues arise this could fall to the patch day or even after). This will include not only the sPvP leaderboards, but also leaderboards for WvW and PvE. The sPvP leaderboards will rank players by their rating (but won't show the actual rating) and show other stats such as a players win/loss record. The leaderboards will also be sortable with limiting the leaderboards to only include players from the friends list, server, or their region (NA or EU).
When asked about hot-join and possibly pushing players into tournaments, the devs said that they see Custom Arenas replacing hot-joins when they go live. They didn't talk much about custom arenas, but mentioned things like being able to turn on/off different things, setting player limits like 2v2, passwords, and naming the room. ArenaNet is also excited for custom arenas as they will be able to see what features players are turning on/off to help them plan what maps/game types they should focus development on.
Spectator Mode is not going to be the same thing as observer mode was in GW1 and is closer to what you might find in an FPS. Players will be able to join a spectator team where they can select predefined cameras from the mini-map or select players from the party windows. If a player is selected, you will see their bar including what skills they are using and their cooldowns as well as the player's traits, stats and gear. Initially spectator mode will only be available in hot-join and custom arenas. When it does become available for tournaments there will be a whitelist of shoutcasters who can spectate so that random spectators can't whisper to players in the tournament insider information. Whitelisted shoutcasters would then receive in-game notifications when a tournament starts so they can accept (or decline) to spectate and shoutcast it.
These were the big three features not only because of their feature status, but also because they are coming soon. It was said that Leaderboards could be turned on at any time once the team feels they are ready, possibly even before the March patch. The other two features were not given dates, but the impression that they are not far from being pushed live and might not be held for a major patch release.
Then there is all the little SotG and upcoming stuff:
- 8 team tournaments popular on the EU region, not so much on NA
- May make 8 team tournaments a weekend or scheduled event
- Could lead to scheduled monthly tournaments
- Swiss style, top 8 teams in the elimination tournament
- PvE and PvP originally designed to be completely separate
- Data shows that most PvP players play PvE/WvW and vice versa
- Going to Ease up on keeping them separate
- With March Patch, Daily PvP will give Laurels
- Can't earn double the Laurels; First completed gives Laurel
- Completing PvE Daily first means no Laurel from PvP Daily. PvP Daily first means no Laurel from PvE daily.
- Also in March Patch, Logging out in PvP or Town Clothes will show that character in PvP gear or Town Clothes on the character select screen.
- Looking into PvP Legendaries, Endless Finishers
- Current system doesn't allow Endless Finishers but “A new system may or may not be coming that will deal with that exact issue.”
- Designing a new trait type that will punish players with boons. Ex. Deal more dmg per boon the target has.
- To help counter bunker types. Will also reduce high spike damage with this change.
- After March patch, beam attacks can hit targets near the beam.
- Will always hit targeted enemy. Additional enemies up to 3-5 that are in the beam.
- Can't be Body Blocked as things like Necro Minion Masters would have minions always blocking the beam.
- Will be watched closely to see if damage needs to be reduced.
- Includes skills like Elementalist's Arc Lightning, Guardian's down state skill Wrath, and Mesmer's Spatial Surge and Confusing Images.
- Part of change was to give Mesmers a viable AoE option outside of shattering.
- Working on Utilities so that classes have more than a few utility skill options.
- In March Patch, Pets will have the same Agony Resistance as their master.
- Includes all pets: Ranger's, Mesmer illusions, Necro minions, etc.
- Looking at sPvP Progression
- Possibly spreading ranks past 80 so that ranking up happens more frequently to give a sense of progression
- Gems are unlikely to come back as a reward since the removal of Tournament Tokens
- Devs discussing rewards for top % of leaderboards with special PvP Titles/Gear
- To show off skill vs the current ranks which could either show skill or just time spent
- They wanted to get a good solid base of maps with Conquest.
- Not that that is achieved, they are looking at additional game types to develop.
- Once all the core sPvP feature are in and working, ANet will make a media push to bring players back (or new players) to sPvP
- Pointless to do that before everything is ready for an eSport environment.
Matt "Mattsta" Adams