Evil threatens Tyria, but our Dream will guide us through darkness... to dawn. -Caithe

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Guild Wars 2: Underwater world

Hey everyone!

2 days ago, June 24th, the official ArenaNet Blog and the Guild Wars 2 website posted about underwater exploring, combat and other underwater mechanics.
Jonathan Sharp Talks Underwater Combat

Breathing underwater
You might wonder, if I go explore underwater, how will I be able to breath and stay alive?
ArenaNet says breathing shouldn't be a thing to worry about while playing the game. In Guild Wars 2, a breathing apparatus will be instantly put all up on your face. This default breathing apparatus will allow you to ignore the fact you normally wouldn't be able to breath. Next to this default, you'll find all sorts of cool gear to help you discover the depths of the ocean.
"There is an exception however; when you're swimming underwater and your health reaches zero (E.g. by combat), you'll go into a drowning state, which functions like the downed state you experience when above water except with some small ability to move.

Personally, I think this is a very good solution to the swimming problem many games have. I personally only have experience from the World of Warcraft swimming, in which you constantly have to watch out you're not drowning, which would result in health-loss and death.

Going underwater
In GW2, you will have the option to swim at the top of the water without diving below or you can go full-on underwater by tilting the camera down and keep moving forward. When staying at the top of the water, you apparently won't be able to fight and you'll be fair game for any enemies lurking below the surface. When diving below the surface, you will automagically (Is this a typo from ArenaNet or was this intended?) switch to your underwater weapon set, skill setup and breathing device.

Why do you think ArenaNet doesn't allow us to fight while swimming at the top of the water? Would it cause too many technical issues to implement it or would it simply be a choice they made? Let me know your opinion in the comments!

Actual diving
If you are being chased by a horde of mobs and you need a quick escape, you'll be able to dive off a cliff to land in the water far below. The second you hit water, you’re ready to go—you switch to underwater mode, pull out your underwater weapon, and start swimming while your pursuers yell and curse!

This should be neat! Do you think the mobs will be able to dive in the water too and follow you?

Swim Around a Little
ArenaNet doesn't want the undersea zones to feel like a secondary experience compared to the land zones. In addition to a wide variety of dynamic events, most dungeons have underwater content, and your personal story will also occasionally take you under the sea.

You’ll discover spectacular sights, diverse challenges, and powerful enemies while underwater in Guild Wars 2. There will be many, many races under the sea to encounter. An example are the krait.

Fighting in a 3D Space
Underwater combat will open up a lot of tactical opportunities for players. Area of effect skills can be used to hit foes on top of one another. You can use skills to force enemies up to the surface, or drag them down to the ocean floor.

Weapons That Work While Wet
Currently there are 3 main underwater weapons, but not all are used by all professions.
Elementalist Warrior Ranger Necromancer Guardian Thief Engineer ?
Spear X X X X X
Trident X X X
Harpoon gun X X X X

Underwater skills
When you dive under, your skills in slots 6 trough 10 automatically change to underwater skills. As you might imagine, not all your land-based utility, heal, and elite skills work underwater, so they've come up with some really cool underwater equivalents of these skills.

We’re not kidding when we say that the underwater experience in Guild Wars 2 is going to be a vital, important part of the game. You can’t experience everything the game has to offer without getting wet, so grab a breathing device and a trident and hit the beach! Life is much better down where it’s wetter, under the sea.

The content of this post is derived from the official ArenaNet Blog.

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