GW2 Queen’s Jubilee patch preview
GW2 Queen’s Jubilee Aug 6 patch preview. Concept drawings are done by Iske.
Living World Release
Queen’s Jubilee is the name of this Living World update. It is not only a celebration of ten years of Queen Jennah’s reign but also a celebration of human spirit and resilience of all the difficulty Kryta has faced. The Crown Pavilion and the Queen’s Gauntlet activity will remain for the entire month.
Hot Air Balloons
The Queen have sent invitations all across Tyria to the dignitaries from the major racial cities. These dignitaries will be traveling via the hot air ballon that can found in all open world zones except Southsun Cove and Orr. These ballons are visible from a long way off and are also marked on the map with a small red ballon icon.
Around the balloons are Balloon Pilots and speaking to them will lead you to events. Achievements are rewarded for escorting dignitaries to the balloons and defeating the Aetherblade pirates (yes they are returning) attacking the balloons. These events are soloable for the average player and scale to the level of the map (5-10 minutes per event).
Ignite the Beacons
In the various parts of Divinity’s Reach, you will find Torchbearers (these have the same map icons as the Heralds) who will start you in a mini activity that involves racing between two points to lit a bunch of Beacons of Kryta before the timer runs out. This is a call back to the original Guild Wars’ Beacons of Kryta content and serve as a metaphor for the spreading of Kryta’s influence.
This mini activity isn’t as straightforward as you might think as you will run out of time if you follow the path of the marked beacons. Instead, you will need to do some improvising and urban parkour to find the shortcuts. Completing this mini activity a number of times will reward you with an achievement and Flame of Kryta, a permanent torch to use in dark places (i.e. jumping puzzles).
The Great Collapse have being transformed into the Crown Pavilion, covered at the top by a giant eagle with spread wings, a major symbol of the human race. The Crown Pavilion are protected by Watchknights, mechanical female knights designed as new protectors for the Queen to supplement the Seraph and the Ministry Guards.
Before you can enter the actual tent pavilion to participate in the various activities, you will be gated through a story instance where you will meet many of the familiar characters: Lord Faren, Countess Anise, Logan Thackacy, Queen Jennah, Braham and Rox. This forced story instance serves to provide some context and story to the update.
The Crown Pavillion itself is a giant arena divided into six segments and two layers. The bottom layer is designed for group events while the top layer is designed for 1vs1 arena activity called Queen’s Gauntlet (see below). The middle ring contains embassaries from the various races whom you can represent to receive unique buffs and buy rewards from.
You will find enemies from humanity’s past in each of the six segments of the Crown Pavilion. Centaurs, Pirates, Flame Legion, Ogres, Destroyers, and Bandits each occupy a segment and densely populate with veterans. These are not actual enemies from humanity’s past but rather mesmer illusions placed on Watchknights. Each segment is designed for 20-30 players and you can usually find two group boss events inside the pavilion at any time. When these group bosses (Champions) are alive, they will apply debuffs to the entire zone.
- The pirate boss will rain cannonballs on you from time to time.
- The bandit boss will hide bombs around corners that you may step on while doing events.
- Destroyer boss cause the heat to rise, which reduces your endurance regeneration.
The group bosses are designed to be challenging for large zerg of players that clump up. Many of them will contain powerful AoE abilities that can absolutely destroy a large zerg if players are mindlessly stacked together. Defeat these events will reward you with Queen’s Gauntlet tickets and Watchwork Sprockets (cogs).
The Queen’s Gauntlet will be taking place in the skyline above the Crown Pavillion. There will be a circular track with six suspended glass domes where players can engage in 1vs1 arena type of fights against various NPC opponents. The glass dome allow other players to observe you and serve as speculators. However, since only a limited number of glass domes are available per map and only one person can be inside a dome at a time, you may expect some sort of lineups (each fight lasts 2 minutes except for the tier endbosses and each map only holds 75 players). Entering the Queen’s Gauntlet will also require Queen’s Gauntlet tickets that can be dropped from various events or purchased with cogs.
The fights are divided into three tiers, with difficulty increasing with each tier. The fights are also timed (2 minutes)and those who failed to complete the fight under the time limit will see the floor open up and dropping them below to their death in a specular fashion. (Players who are doing the group events downstairs can expect to see bodies falling from the sky from time to time). Successfully completing each arena fight will reward you with Elaborate Watchwork Boxes which can rewards Watchwork Sprockets and various crafting mats such as Charged Shards.
The first tier is more of a learning tier and you can expect to fight the following NPCs
- Halmi Hammerfell: Regular attacks hits for very little damage but has a huge windup attack that can be avoided.
- Doobroosh: Quaggan that gains a stacking buff called Hormonal Imbalance that Increase his size and deals more damage the more times you hit him (this reset if you don’t hit him for a while). Ranged can kite him around while melee can save their cooldowns and jump in to whack on him from time to time.
- Windcaller Kieldia: Summons a whole ton of tornados (causes knockdown) that increase in number as the fight goes on. You will need good mobility and burst damage to defeat this one.
- Suriel the Blazing Light: Endboss of tier 1, you have a longer time limit and a bigger cash prize if you beat her (in addition to achievements). Standing in black pools around the room will cause you to take constant tick damage but grant you a buff called Shroud in Darkness that can prevent you from getting one shotted by Suriel’s Solar Flare attack. You will want to jump in right before a Solar Flare hits and jump out of the pool immediately after. Suriel also have a bauble around her called Blazing Light that makes her immune to damage until you drag her into a black pool.
Defeating the final boss of Tier 3, Liadri the Concealing Darkness, will reward you with a Mini Liadri the Concealing Dark pet which resembles her likeness. However, only around 8% of the testers at Arenanet have defeated her after several weeks.
Every boss in the Queen’s Gauntlet have being tested to be beatable with every profession but do not expect to beat all of them with the same trait/weapon setup. Some will require burst damage, others may require good mobility or crowd control removals. Players of all levels will be able to participant in Queen’s Gauntlet but don’t expect it to be easy if you are not a native level 80.
If you want some extra challenge and achievements in the Queen’s Gauntlet , you can also talk to the Master of Gambits to activate gambits for tickets (each gambit costs 1 ticket to activate). You can select a number of gambits (debuffs) to put on yourself, making the fight significantly harder but also increase your reward proportionally. There are achievements for putting on a maximum of 5 gambits on yourself while defeating third tier NPC encounters, which can be almost “impossible”.
Here are some of the available gambits.
- On Fire: A burning debuff will be applied to you
- Exhausted: You have no endurance and cannot dodge roll.
- Frailty: Takes increased damage from attacks.
- Squeamish: Deal reduced damage
- Tremors: Earthquakes occasionally affect the arena, causes knockdown?
- Hamstring: A crippled debuff will be applied to you.
- Crowd Favorite: Face an additional opponent in the arena at the same time.
Achievements & Rewards
Due to the potential difficulty of Queen’s Gauntlet, its achievements are separated from the Queen’s Jubilee achievements.
Queen’s Jubilee achievements involves escorting various emissaries to the hot-air balloons, doing events in the Crown Pavilion, Beacon of Kryta torch runs, and representing the various racial cities. There isn’t enough achievements under this category for the meta achievement (which requires 16 completed achievements) so you will need to complete some Jubilee dallies to make up the difference. Completing the meta reward you with the Mini Watchknight.
Queen’s Gauntlet achievements involves beating various tier endbosses, beating some bosses in a certain manner (i.e. letting the Quaggan get to 10 stacks of his hormonal buff before defeating him), and using various gambits. Rewards are given for defeating the first tier and the third tier end bosses in addition to the meta.
Watchwork Sprockets can be used to purchase new recipes (for runes/sigils), tonics, and the new Sovereign weapon set from the Crown Pavilion vendors. They can be also used as part of the new recipes.
Your new wallet will automatically collect all coins, karma, tokens, fractal relics, and other various currencies from a character’s inventory when you log in with that character and collect them into one account wide pool. You can access this account wide wallet through a tab in the Hero window or via the bottom of your inventory. Any future currency items will be automatically added to the account wallet. There is no 250 stack limit on the account wallet and the storage is pretty much unlimited.
Permanent Finishers (WvW or PvP)
Permanent Finishers have being added to the game and its menu can be accessed via the bottom of the Hero menu. You can also expect a number of event specific finishers such as Snowman finisher, Gift finisher, Mad King finisher, Thornroot finisher, and the Scarecrow finisher in addition to the regular Rabbit, Deer, Dragon etc finishers.
From the Finishers menu, you can activate any finisher you have unlocked/purchased and they will generally come with unlimited uses. Players can expect to purchase finishers on the gemstore. These finishers are useable in both PvP and WvW.
You can still use consumable finishers and if you activate them, they will replace your permanent finisher for the duration.
PvP Tournament Solo queue
PvP Tournaments have being renamed to Arenas so don’t be confused if you see the Arena name popup when you speak to the Tournament Master in the Mists. Solo and Team Arena queues are separate so players don’t have to worry about getting destroyed by organized groups while queuing solo. They also have their own separate leaderboards.
Royal Terrace (also known as the VIP area) is a new microtransaction introduced with this patch. If you are really rich, you can purchase a temporary pass to this special area known as the Royal Terrace that comes with a whole bunch of convenience things such as crafting stations, mystic forge etc. It is located right next to the Crown Pavilion in Divinity’s Reach.
Visit the game master in Lion’s Arch and he will pop you into whatever the minigame is on rotation for that day.