Guild Wars 2 looks set to make waves when it hopefully hits the MMO landscape later on in 2011. We have gotten the first details one of the last classes to be revealed in the game, and it is clear evidence that we're dealing with a developer not content to just deliver an ambitious RPG, but a developer wanting to redefine the genre.
The explosive new class we learned of is Commando, and as the name implies it's a role that takes its inspiration from military tradition. "The movie with the same name from 1985 with Arnold Schwarzenegger has been a great inspiration to us," lead designer Jon Peters reveals. And much like Arnold, you will be able to make use of military apparell such as shotguns, rocketlaunchers, grenades and flash bangs as a Commando.
"I'm utterly convinced that everyone who plays games enjoys vehicles," Jon Peters continues. And in addition to the modern day weapons, the class also has the option of driving off in vehicles and run over monsters with a tank or stealth your way passed them in a submarine. "Each vehicle has one specific strength, the motorcycle for instance is fast and the jeep can be used for a number of things."
On top of this the Commando can act as a driver of other classes, such as the neuromancer, and in turn the neuromancer can use a special ability inside of an armored vehicle whereby the headlights will blind and poison enemies caught in the beam.
You're probably thinking that Commando sounds like a class that doesn't quite fit into the Guild Wars universe, but they have in fact always been a part of the world. "In the first Guild Wars we had cannons, so it's not unreasonable that 250 years on, the inhabitants of Tyria have access to far more sophisticated weapons," says Jon Peters. "Furthermore, if a soldier in Guild Wars can use his hands to use swords and bows, why could not these same hands be used to fire rifles and bazookas?"
It certainly sounds different and the class introduces a new way to enjoy Guild Wars 2. Unlike other classes there is no limit to the range of the Commando, thanks to his technological supremacy he can hit and attack anything he can see. The prey won't even know what hit them when the Commando uses his sniper rifle from distance and the cranium of said prey explodes and leaves a bloody pool on the ground.
Arenanet still claims that this in no way makes the class better than other classes. "What you need to keep in is that our philosophy with Guild Wars 2 has always been that every class should possess some really strong abilities, that gives them an edge on the other classes. If all classes have an ability that seems overpowered compared to the rest, then it all balances out in the end." explains Jon Peters.
The class is an attempt to appeal to a larger audience. "Most massively multiplayer online RPG's only appeal to fans of the fantasy genre, so our primary objective in creating this class has been to reach all the gamers out there who are only interested in games such as Call of Duty and Battlefield," Peters explains. "It's not a secret that we wish for the genre to feel more like a first person shooter."
It's a brave new take on the genre that Arenanet introduces with the Commando class. A vision to broaden the appeal to a larger group of people by having them look at their world through the scope of a sniper rifle rather than at the edge of a sword. Thanks to the Commando class you will be able to destroy the world of Guild Wars 2 in a way you never thought possible.