I haven’t actually played Guild Wars very much since I purchased it, there is no particular reason for that. There were no pressing time/schedule issues that would have kept me from playing it, no ultimatims from the significant other, I just hadn’t been playing it much. I am pretty sure that the reason I hadn’t been playing it much is that it is one of those games where it takes me a good half an hour to remember my skill keys (for each character) and even longer to figure out what the hell I was supposed to be doing the last time I quit playing. Guild Wars solved that all, damn it.
Guild Wars now has a slick new mission interface that tells you every quest that you have started in any town, listed immediately under a big old town heading. Hard to say you don’t know where you need to go when it tells you which town to go to, then goes further to tell you exactly what you have to do once you leave that town. Still, it doesn’t tell you exactly how to use your spells/skills, but they are easy enough to figure out during the first few minutes of play each time. Not that you really have to learn how to use them, more that you assign different skills to different hot keys based on your character; It would suck to cast a fireball spell when you meant to cast a heal party spell, if you know what I mean.
My wife has gotten into the game far more than I have. Not to the point that she is getting into some sort of weird cosplay fetish (though that might be cool, come to think of it), but she does love to beat those baddies up. We actually tried to start brand new characters ( a couple of months ago) that would play exclusively together, but that idea all went to shit when neither of us was happy with starting at the bottom when we both had characters that could kill everything on the screen without a thought (her characters more so than mine). Today, however, we finally managed to get the game going.
The game starts out with little quests; Wander just south of the city to find my lost ‘x’ and bring it back for reward ‘y’. There are hundreds of those little quests as you wander through the towns. You don’t have to do them but you will end up with better weapons and armor if you do. The game also has ‘missions’. The mission is something that is supposed to move you from one zone to the next. You do the missions to open up new quests basically. You really have to do the missions though, cause at some point you will no longer get any experience doing the quests in the previous area. The missions are a good thing.
The missions can also be done solo at lower levels, though they will require a damn good group of people at higher levels. You could do the missions solo at higher levels, but that would require the A.I. of your helpers to be unbelievably high, I.Q. of 32 or so. That might sound low but if you were the programmer, and you tried to think of every stupid move someone might try to make, and then someone tried to make all of those moves -I’ll call him Jimmy-, you then have to try to account for the best and worst possible move in any situation. The A.I. can only be so smart. The A.I. in Guild Wars is pretty damn good, but sometimes you end up with your mercenary stuck in a corner beating up the air that he breathes.
I ended up playing a bit of Guild Wars with my wife tonight. My wife’s character was 12 levels higher than me, and I had already done the stupid mission in the first place, but it was pretty damn fun to have her playing there with me. Guild Wars is bringing husband and wife together.
Go Guild Wars!