April 7, 2012

Squad leader, we got a man down. ...Squad leader? You there?..

Hey you, come join the squad I'm leading, but while you follow my instructions, STFU. ArenaNet just posted a blog about their Squad system in Guild Wars 2. Jordan Massey is a gameplay programmer who is working directly with the WvW system and he shed some light on what Squads are and how they'll benefit teams. While most of it was in consideration of the WvW, it also applies for groups who want to take on big PvE content, such as world bosses.

Click the link to view the article by Jordan Massey 

The article is worth reading, but to sum it up, squads can be made up of many people, and have 1 person leading. People can join on the fly, however, squad commanders are the only ones able to speak in the chat designated for that particular squad. So leave behind the banter & interruptions when it's time to focus on the task at hand. Still, it seems a little odd for a game that's so focused on being social.

Personally, I like this a lot. While I value what my friends and guildies have to say, you're likely to have all kinds of people outside your circle who will be joining the fight. There's nothing worse than people arguing or spouting off obscenities while the rest of the group is trying to focus. And it's not like you won't have communication with the people you'd actually like feedback from. Just share it in guild chat, private tells, vent/mumble etc.

The blog mostly spoke about the iteration of squads in WvW, but Jordan said it can also be used for big encounters in PvE. Since the closest thing they have to raiding that we've seen so far are non-instanced boss encounters, that require a large group to take down and allow for anyone to join the fight at any time. Basically, you can walk in on a fight, click on someone who's in a squad, and select the option to join that squad.

I can see certain squad leaders becoming sort of like heroes in the game. The ones who know the content very well and are able to rally players to success. Their names you'll get to know, you'll want to join their groups whenever you see them, and they will bring the community together. That sort of virtual glory should be enough to drive squad leaders to do their best.

With 3 days left before pre-purchase, I'm overly excited to get into the next beta. I'll be sure to leave my impressions here and hopefully get some videos since there won't be an NDA. Till then, let me know what you think of the Squad feature.


  1. I think squads will be a good mechanic in GW2. Especially in those big boss encounters...a little organization wouldn't be so bad.

  2. I agree. I think it's necessary since anyone from anywhere can join in. Without the Squad system, it could be very chaotic. They're saying it's going to cost a lot of gold, so only people that are really interested in leading will buy the rights to.