by Crystin Cox on January 13, 2016
When gliding was first being prototyped for Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns™, the entire dev team fell in love with the fun and freedom of soaring through the trees in the jungle. We knew gliding was going to be a big part of the expansion, and we worked hard to make the tall trees and towering ravines of the Heart of Maguuma glider friendly. But it wasn’t long before we started asking ourselves what it would be like to glide around Mount Maelstrom, or between the streets of Divinity’s Reach. Of course we tried it right away, and while it was fun, it wasn’t ready for mass consumption. We needed to focus on finishing gliding and all the other Masteries forGuild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns‘ launch, so we set aside gliding in Central Tyria—but it wasn’t forgotten. Now that we’ve had some time to think about lands that aren’t covered in poison vines and pocket raptors, we’re almost ready to bring gliders to all corners of Tyria, and we can’t wait to share it with all of you!
How Gliding in Central Tyria Works
Once gliding in Central Tyria is released, anyone who has completed or later completes the Basic Gliding Mastery will be able to deploy their glider in not only the Heart of Maguuma maps, but in any open-world map in Central Tyria as well. If you’ve unlocked other gliding Masteries like Lean Techniques or Advanced Gliding, these will also function in Central Tyria. Gliders will not be able to be used in Central Tyria story instances or dungeons (including the Fractals of the Mists). Instanced content and dungeons created before Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns were just not designed to handle gliding, so we’ll be keeping you out of the sky in these instances. You may also encounter areas in the open world that are No-Fly Zones. If you glide into one of these areas, you’ll get a warning. If you don’t turn back, eventually your glider will collapse and you’ll fall. These zones have been set up around sensitive areas like the ends of jumping puzzles to prevent skipping content. Of course, what’s the point of having the glider if you can’t use it? So we’ve used the No-Fly Zones very sparingly.
Gliding Where No Glider Has Gone Before
It will come as no surprise that the maps in Central Tyria were not designed with gliding in mind. It would have been very time consuming to redesign all the Central Tyria maps to add verticality, updrafts, and ley lines, and we wouldn’t want to. Each Central Tyrian map has a great story and design of its own, and we have no desire to turn the entire game into the Heart of Maguuma. We love the freedom that comes with gliding and wanted to bring that feeling to maps we already love. We’ve made some small changes here and there, but for the most part, you’ll find Central Tyria just as you left it—but you’ll have a much greater ability to explore and move through these familiar zones. These new freedoms might allow you to get to places in these maps we did not originally intend you to see. As long as your explorations remain harmless, it’s all part of the fun!
We hope gliding in Central Tyria gives you the opportunity to rediscover your favorite map. See you in (the skies of) Tyria!