Jump to content
  • Sign Up

My review of Windswept Haven


Recommended Posts

Original Reddit Post: https://www.reddit.com/r/Guildwars2/comments/72kmaa/my_review_of_windswept_haven/

My review of Windswept Haven

Hello. My name is Lawrence and I'm the leader of a guild named The Kodash Bazaar [KB]. Prior to the release of Path of Fire we have initiated a campaign of pushing new lore about our guild that would suit the expansion and our return to Vabbi by claiming the new guild hall. Now that you know why this hall is important to me and my guild, I can begin my review.

The Pros

  • The Architecture — This hall has by far the most beautiful and symmetrical architecture when compared to the former two halls. It looks more as if the hall is newly built rather than being an abandoned canyon (Lost Precipice) or a decomissioned Exalted sanctuary (Gilded Hollow). Something that very much pleases me and my members who now feel like they're all royalties in the Elonian hierarchy.

  • The Detail — Clearly the developers have taken alot of care for details within this hall. The interiors of the buildings are very ornamented and pre-decorated with colorfully patterned carpets, warm brass lights and bookshelves filled with textures that are all adding to the general animated feeling that you get when visiting this hall. And when the night falls and the drape of stars is pulled across the sky you're just stunned by the magnificent universe that lingers above you, something that feels very true to an actual desert.

  • The Color — The Lost Precipice and Gilded Hollow were very monotonous when it came to the color palette of the architecture. It was either very sand colored, or way too gold colored. In Windswept Haven you have a great contrast between the royal feeling of Vabbian blue and the perception of desert sands. The vibrance adds more life to the hall and I can imagine that aspect to increase further when player decorating takes place with Ascalonian Trees or other vivid items.

  • The Space — I feel slightly double-sided about this one, but I must say that there's alot of visible open space. It gives the sense of being surrounded by a grandiose desert and I do applaud the developers for the way they have designed the boundries around this map. However, the reason why I'm double-sided about it is because there are walls where it looks like you could cross them, and it leaves me wishing to go further into the desert to visit the rolling dunes in the distance and the soaring cliffs in the sun drenched skies. (A Image of Dunes B Image of Cliffs)

The Cons

  • The Exploration — I've been in two guilds for atleast over a year time. One had the Gilded Hollow, and my own has the Lost Precipice. During my time in both guilds I've spent alot of hours exploring the halls by means of endless Super Cloud stairways, Oakheart Essence's and an amount of portals that would make a Mesmer rich if they were paid for every single one. Exploring your own hall (and showing it off to new members) has always been a great importance to me. Sadly I feel like the Windswept Haven is not a strong performer when it comes to explorability as it lacks the many different levels of verticality that is very present in the former two halls.

  • The Compatibility — As the main decorator of my guild I find it very important that a hall is compatible for the members to create something of their own in an already existing place. I like to think big when I decorate, big enough to fully change around the way things look. (A Example 1 B Example 2) But in Windswept Haven everything already looks so completed that it doesn't leave much for me to customize, nor are there many abandoned houses or buildings that could be turned into something by the imagination of a member. And another problem here is that the desert sands are so wavy that it becomes near impossible to build in a flat and even way, something that is crucial for large creations involving an amount of golden walls and pillars that would make a Skritt faint sideways.

  • The Access — When I was discovering Windswept Haven for the first time, I stumbled upon many buildings that were almost entirely burried beneath sand. (A Example) The main thought passing my mind was... ''Please tell me they are accessible!?''. But to my surprise, a very disappointing surprise, I found that they are not accessible at all. These buildings look like they could've made for a great underground area where sand is pouring down the crevices like in the Silverwastes Jumping Puzzle, and I've seen them implement this at the pyramids North of Amnoon. So why not here? Not only would it give more space to decorate, and more areas to explore, but it would also be a good competition against a hall like the Lost Precipice which is very rich with hidden areas outside the boundries of NPC vendors. Think of this as a cool example!

  • The Decorations — I know that this topic doesn't have much to do with the hall itself, but it is something that has been annoying me like a splinter in my brain as I explore the new maps that came with Path of Fire. There are so many assets I see in this game that triggered me with the following comment... ''I wish they turned it into a decoration.'' But in the new maps I've seen some things that really made me wonder why Anet didn't turn them into a decoration as they seem very iconic to this release. (A How could you not give us this tree? B Or what about this one?) And probably loads more that I haven't seen yet.

TL;DR — The thematic design is gorgeous, but the player interaction is questionable.

Another thing I would like to see in the future is a global weather machine that is able to manually set the weather for the entire hall. Think of snow, rain, fog, sun and floating fireflies. I'm sure Taimi can come up with this in Season 4, right? And don't forget about Guild capes.

Additional Notes

  • This blue fire has the same sound effects as the guild portal and it's frankly quite annoying because it blurs out the in-game music if you're standing close to it. The sound itself is quite intrusive aswell to listen to and its reach is way too far. Distance Example It should be replaced by the sound of crackling fire. Nothing more, nothing less.

  • Both the Lost Precipice and Gilded Hollow have a hidden treasure room with lots of golden coins and chests filled with gems. The Skritt within me is wondering why it hasn't been added into Windswept Haven?

  • The bartender at the Tavern doesn't even have his own bar, aside from the bottles in the rack behind him. Surely we can add this by putting our own bars down... But that's not the point.

  • While exploring the hall with my Springer I've been climbing some of the high-up cliffs, only to be met constantly by invisible walls that are placed very weirdly and abruptly block off the path. I think the invisible walls should be expanded way beyond their limits to improve the exploration experience. Let us go up there! And there! But wait, there's more! Want me to keep going? Okay! Alright the last one.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...