Monday, April 27, 2015

Hands Up! Who'd Kill For A Heart Of Thorns Beta Invite? : GW2

Well now's your chance!

As of tomorrow anything you kill in Dry Top or Silverwastes has a chance to drop a "rare portal" to the Maguma Jungle. Looting one will flag your account for the next closed beta event.

Full details here, although I notice there's no mention either of when the "next closed beta event" is scheduled to arrive, nor how long the event preceding it will last. Or, indeed, exactly what time tomorrow the whole thing begins.

Whenever it is, you can bet your last copper that everyone will be jammed into umpteen instances of those two maps as soon as the flag goes up, laying waste to the Wastes as though the Last Days were upon us.

It's a really clever, genuinely innovative idea. It fires up excitement about the beta and drives player activity in the game at one and the same time. It also acts as a self-selecting filter, ensuring that the next beta is filled with people who a) actually have a character capable of participating and b) also have sufficient interest in the game to play that character.

Added to that it makes participating in the beta feel like both a reward and, at least in some small way, lore-appropriate. No doubt there will be people who'll find the randomness uncomfortable but it happens to fit right in with my preferences, which tend to favor serendipity, fortune and chance. Plus there's nothing fairer than a lucky dip, right?

As it happens I'm not particularly interested in beta-ing HoT. I think my days of getting all fired up about early, temporary access to content I'm going to end up playing for weeks and months in a permanent version are pretty much over. On the other hand - blogging opportunity ahoy!

It's been months since I set foot in either of the maps in question, other than to do a couple of quick vistas for the dailies. I liked them both well enough when they were a novelty but that's very much what they were - novelties. I feel neither has much persistence outside the original Living Story unless it's to grind for the various armor sets and similar gew-gaws. Without this incentive I might never have hunted there again.

As it is, I imagine I'll do a couple of sessions. More, maybe, if this turns out to be a full two-week event as I suspect it might. If a Beta Portal drops, so be it. If not, can't say I'll be very disappointed.


  1. I generally think the randomness is a good thing as well. For the reasons you ssaid but also because it means you get a wider cross section of the players. Sure it will be mostly the hardcore types who spent many hours grinding mobs there but hopefully also a few people just popping in and out with different playstyles

    1. Judging by the drop rate I saw in the first hour people are going to have to be either very lucky or very hardcore or more probably both!


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