What is Guild Wars 2?
Well, if you are reading this there is a good chance that you already have some idea of what Guild Wars 2 is. But, if not, here is the basics. Guild Wars 2 is an MMORPG (follow the link if you want more details on what an MMORPG is). Guild Wars 2 was a bit different from other MMORPGs right from the start because Guild Wars 2 never had a subscription. The game started right from the git-go as pay to start free to play. On top of that, the game did away with the Holy Trinity (more on this here).
Guild Wars 2 has 5 playable races, the Asure, Charr, Humans, Norn, and Sylvari. Unlike many other MMORPGs, in Guild Wars 2, your race does not limit what Class you can pick. Instead, each race has unique abilities and stories that enhance your experience as you play the game. Asure’s for example are a smaller race of humanoids whose focus is on technology and intellectual prowess. They are not concerned with strength. A stark contrast to this is the Charr. The Charr were born in battle, it is all they have known, and with that comes the requirement to be strong and fierce.
Guild Wars 2, Still Worth it in 2021?
Guild Wars 2 is still a very active and exciting game. There is an estimated 17 million monthly players and roughly 750,000 daily players according to the last count on 6/16/2021. Keep in mind, those numbers are complete estimates that I found on the web. Those are not numbers reported by AreaNet so they could be completely different in reality. But still, that is a huge number of players still. And when you play, you can see it. While running around the world completing the area quests or gathering up some mats, you will constantly see other players. Even in the old world!
Then there is the question of content. Guild Wars 2 has content galore. Not only can you play through all 7 of the completely awesome stories, but these stories also are almost completely voice acted as well (rather well I might add). You also have countless other activities such as crafting, gathering, PvP (Player vs Player), WvW (World vs World), achievements, fractals, raids, strikes, and many others. I would rarely find myself lacking something to do while playing GW2. And more often than not, it was just because I was waiting for a guildie to get his butt in gear to run fractals.
Some High Points of Guild Wars 2
So, you still might be wondering, “Why would I play Guild Wars 2 when there are so many other MMORPGs to pick from”. Well, there are a few really great answers to that question. One, the game is now completely free. When Guild Wars 2 first came out it was a pay-to-own free-to-play experience. What that means is you would pay to get the game initially, but no sub was required to play it. Now veterans to the MMORPG genre now jump to the dreaded “Cash Shop”. Yes, there is a Cash Shop, but there are never items in there that give you an advantage over other players. There are some quality of life items like never-ending gathering tools or the copper-fed-salvage-omatic. However, all of these items are not needed to enjoy the game or be successful in PvE or PvP.
Another great reason to play Guild Wars 2 is the fact that it is very casual and hardcore friendly. Now, I know that makes no sense at all but hear me out. Guild Wars 2’s end game starts at 80 (the current level cap). In most MMORPGs that I have played, at end game, you start the gear leveling grind. Always working on getting that next item that increases your stats by X%. Guild Wars 2 has that, but in reality, it is not needed for a majority of the content. You can still enjoy fractals, PVP, WvW, world bosses, new content, and much more. However, if you like that gear grind, you can do so with fractals, raids, and strikes. However, in the end, it really leaves it up to you how you want to play the end game. In most cases, the end game of all MMORPGs is fashion, and Guild Wars 2 has that in spades.
There is Still Some Grime
As with any game, there are some issues with Guild Wars 2. One glaring issue, at least for me, is that some content is not playable. For example, living world season 1 is no longer accessible. This is due to some changes that were made during that season that made it impossible to allow players to go back and play it. They learned from that mistake and all living world seasons have been replayable since then, but that is a big annoyance for me. Then there is the open-world content. There are a good number of open-world quests or bosses that you cannot beat solo or even with a small group. These quests\bosses were created with a zerg of players in mind. It can be frustrating at times when you want to complete such a quest or world activity just to see it time out after you have died 50 times.
Should you Play Guild Wars 2?
Now the verdict. Is Guild Wars 2 worth your time? In my opinion…. Yes. Yes, it is. When you look at the fact that you can play the game for literally nothing and get such a great story from just that, I feel it is well worth it if you have never played Guild Wars 2 before. As for returning players, if you are willing to fork up a little extra cash to get the expansions and living world season (which they do give away for free off and on) I would highly recommend it as well. Guild Wars 2 is a fun, well-made, engaging MMORPG that has, so far, stood the test of time.
If you are looking to jump in under the non-free-to-play side I would recommend checking out G2A.com. They have great prices for all the DLC and gems.
I hope you enjoyed my review, if you did please drop me a comment. If you disagree with something I said, let me know. I am always open to debate. If you are interested in trying a much older but still great MMORPG, check out my review on Everquest 2!
Thanks all and Good Hunting.