ArenaNET threw us for a loop today when they surprised everybody with a full blown profession reveal of the Commando for Guild Wars 2. With the goal to make GW2 a genre-breaking redefinition of what it means to MMO, the Commando aims to seduce the FPS crowd, a notoriously hard to please demographic. Despite the challenge, Anet is confident that fans of games like Mass Effect, Call of Duty, Angry Birds, and Counter Strike will find a home in this one profession alone.
The commando, as one would expect, is well versed in technological warfare of the highest degree. With his finely honed skills, he can use advanced weaponry that the other professions can barely comprehend (and one might worry about the prowess of an Asuran commando). His cache includes a vast collection of varied hand grenades that can do everything from blind, blow stuff up, and explode into an army of kittens. His night vision goggles enhance his already super-human perception into hi-def, useful for night-time fighting, deep subterranean redstone farming, and other unsavory uses. Lastly, his impressive arsenal of vehicles ensures that the commando and his allies will be able to traverse any terrain the world can throw at him. Unnatural blizzards? Creepy forests of crystallized vegetation? Unforgiving whirlpools of impending demise? No problem, officer.
Last but not least, although able to melt faces on a one-by-one basis, the commando has the ability to radio back-up an any time. These “oh-shit” buttons include, but are not limited to, calling in an entire air-strike of helicopters to combat dragons, a completely novel idea.
Jon Peters did interviews with PC Gamer and Online Welten to give us a little more insight into the happening of the commando. Although still being somewhat coy and allusive about the finer details (we’re still not quite sure what we’ll find when the pants come off), we are given a bit more about what this profession is all about. Despite being intentionally OP, the the commando has one major weakness; commitment. It will then likely not be uncommon to see very few, if any, in LFG. Commandos also enjoy swimming and sniping in their spare time. Fitting.
As far as where they fit into a world like Tyria, other than showing the obvious changes over 250 years in Tyria the answer seems obvious; they don’t have to.
But for continuity’s sake, we are faced with a conundrum that was hastily patched by Guild Wars’ live team today when they implemented a new, limited event. Until Monday, you can hop in Guild Wars right now, head over to Embark Beach and speak to an actual commando from Guild Wars 2. The goal is to help save the past from the future from the past, effectively creating an irreversible temporal paradox, both explaining the existence of the commando and why we have to deal with Gwen in Eye of the North. Brilliance at it’s finest.
And just when you thought it couldn’t get any cooler, ArenaNET threw in Terminator and Orwell references.
Despite clever run-arounds with words, there’s a lot that can be speculated upon based on the interviews. Take, for instance, this quote:
Jon Peters: We can’t say yet where we are going to go with expansions and other future content, but let’s just say we’re exploring the nuclear option.
Jon Peters: Flamethrower is good in a variety of situations—you can create a basic flamethrower fire attack, but you can also air blast projectiles, create a burning area on the ground, or flame-jump around the map.
I think it’s safe to assume that we can expect Guild Wars 2’s graphics engine in regards to fire to be particularly eye-catching. Also, gravity engine for certain, ahem… assets. Impressive.
Some worry the Commando might be overpowered. But that’s what they have said about every profession reveal to date. And as quoted by Jon Peters himself: “…If everyone is overpowered then no-one is overpowered, so I think it should work out pretty well.” Clearly, if Jon Peters says so, we shouldn’t be worried.
The response has been overwhelmingly positive; existing fans are scrambling to their favorite webforums to discuss the newest edition to the Guild Wars universe while broskis, housewives, and 12-year-old Xbox griefers have all perked their ears at the news.
Am I excited about the commando? Yes and no. I feel it fills a much needed void in the niche market, from the hard to impress FPS crew and Farmville social gamers. The gameplay seems smooth and well thought-out, although perhaps a little bit more on the side of not-so-user-friendly. So be it; sometimes there just needs to be that one class that weeds out the weak. Only the strong survive, after all, and it’s clear that when the time comes to strike down Zhaitan and the rest of those dragon baddies, only the elite should step up to the plate.
It might seem a little jarring to current Guild Wars fans, and it definitely doesn’t seem like my personal style of play. One thing’s for sure, though; I sure hope these guys are on my side!
I guess the only question that remains is where was Game Trailers through all of this?
Read More: (updated throughout the day)
Sites: Guild Wars 2 Official | Jon Peters w/ PC Gamer | Jon Peters w/ OnlineWelten | Games On Net | GameReactor
Forums: Guild Wars 2 Guru | In-Character GM Transcript (GWG) |
Blogs: Kill Ten Rats | Hexwise | Hunter’s Insight