Class Diversity

Feb 11

Written by:
2/11/2012 1:47 AM 


Welcome to Guild Tech!

Central to any RPG game is character creation.  Guild Wars is no different in this aspect.  In all my years of playing RPGs and MMOs, I have seen extremely restrictive systems and systems that are so diverse that it makes your head hurt with all the options you have available to you.  Guild wars falls into the latter of the two.  In fact, outside of RIFT and Ragnarok Online, I would say Guild Wars has the most diverse class system available.  Even the creation aspect gives you unique options that are unavailable in any game I have ever played.

First up is the basics of creation.  When you start Guild Wars, you are prompted with two options, PvP or Roleplaying character.  After that, you select your characters origin and which campaign they will start in.  Your origin determines basics, such as how your character will look (Nightfall will have a more African/Middle Eastern feel to them, Factions will have a very oriental feel to them and Prophecies will have a very European feel to them).  Also, whichever campaign you start in will give you more backstory to that particular campaign.  Characters who start from Nightfall or Factions will be unable to experience Pre-Searing Ascalon.  The only way to experience Pre-Searing is to make a prophecies character.  After that, you select your gender.  Then you get to select your class.  As a note, 4 of the 10 classes are exclusive to particular campaigns.  You can only make an Assassin and Ritualist in the Factions campaign, and you can only make a Paragon and Dervish in the Nightfall campaign.  the 6 core classes of Monk, Necromancer, Elementalist, Warrior, Ranger, and Mesmer can be created in any of the campaigns.  So, in case that didn’t make sense, here is a table!

Class selection based on campaign:


The actual aesthetics of your character are very limited, but some things are unique to Guild Wars.  The hair style, color, face and skin color are based on a series of presets.  However, you are able to select the dye colors of your clothing as well as the height of your character.  Some classes can be shorter or taller than others.  Considering this game is 7 years old, this is a very impressive quality to the game.  As a PvP tip though, always make your character as small as possible, larger characters have larger hit boxes and you are more likely to get focused down.

After that, you enter the world as either a PvP or a Roleplaying character.

There are major differences in the choices you have between a PvP and a Roleplaying character.  PvP characters start at max level with max gear and all the skills you have acquired through the collection of Balthazar Rep (so you only have to unlock the skill once for all of your PvP characters).  However, the drawback is that you are unable to leave the Great Temple of Balthazar and that character is unable to participate in any type of PvE content.  

Roleplaying characters are able to access the entire game.  They start at level one and you have to work your way to max level, buy all of your skills and craft all of your gear.  However, you get to experience the story, participate in PvP if you choose, dedicate things to the Hall of Monuments and overall, just do anything and everything that this game has to offer.

Now that all that creation business is out of the way, time to get into the real content of this column.  The actual building of your character’s heroic capabilities.  

(In Guild Wars there's a variety of professions to choose from. Try combining them and find what suits you best)

Guild Wars has a very robust character building system that rivals the complexity of Rift’s Soul System and Ragnarok Online’s character building.  Firstly, you have your primary class which will determine your static abilities available to your character.  Then, you have your secondary profession which can be switched out at any time.  You do have to wait till a certain point in the game where you can unlock all of the classes, but after that point, you can be any combination of classes and gain access to all of those classes.  The drawback of using a secondary class is that you are unable to gain access to the primary attribute associated with the class.  So if you have monk as a secondary, you do not get access to Divine Favor.  You still, however, are able to play virtually any class in the game with a single character.  As a monk, you can play a Mesmer or a Necromancer, just in the body of a monk.

There are problems with having a flexible system.  While most people want unlimited freedom when it comes to their characters and what they can do, having too much freedom comes at severe consequences.  Namely, having a bad build is very likely.  Acquisition of skills also feels slow at times, thus further preventing you from being able to craft a build that is actually worth anything.

However, the build creation aspect also grants the users who understand the finer details of the system can take full advantage of it.  In fact, the system is what keeps the PvP aspect still thriving due to the nature of the metagame changing constantly.  Also, this system gives people who like to constantly play around with their builds an ability to fine tune the way they play to a finite point.

Lastly, there are a lot of sources to help newer players out with their builds.  One place is this.

Essentially, you select your class and it lists the secondary profession, the amount of points you put into each attribute, and all the skills required for the build to work.  Most of these builds might not fit your play style, but they are, however, great starting points for you to go off of.  Following these builds also helps alleviate the trial and error aspect of a flexible system like this.  

If you enjoy playing around with builds and fine tuning them, this system is completely available to do that.  However, if you are not like that, then there are numerous resources out there to help you create your character or put you on the right path. 

4 comment(s) so far...


Re: Class Diversity

Best pictures ever!

By Feral on   2/11/2012 2:27 AM

Re: Outpost

PvP characters CAN leave the temple of balthazar. For example, most of mine make their home in the Luxon side of Fort Aspenwood. They're also able to go to most outposts in the Battle Isle. How would they go PvPing if they can't leave GtoB?

I think that part was worded a little bad, but the rest, very good. Enjoyed reading =]

By Elizabeth on   2/11/2012 2:57 AM

Re: Class Diversity

I must have misread that bit of information regarding PvP characters when creating them. That is, however, great to know as I did not know that bit.

You actually can PvP on GToB, you just have to talk to an NPC, like the Kurzick Diplomat.

By Feral on   2/11/2012 5:04 AM

Re: Class Diversity

Very interesting, even to one who's fervently indifferent to pvp such as myself ^^
And that says a lot i think :)

By thevalliant on   2/11/2012 1:22 PM

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