08/17/2021—August 17 Release Notes
Beta Event 1
We’re excited to begin our first End of Dragons Elite Specialization Beta Event, running from 9:00 a.m. PDT (UTC-7) August 17 through 10:00 p.m. PDT (UTC-7) August 21.
All players will see three new beta character slots on the Character Select screen, which allow players to create and play a fully geared, level-80 beta character of any race for the duration of the weekend. This character can be used in PvE, WvW, and PvP, and any core Tyria or previous expansion map content, including Heart of Thorns™ and Path of Fire™. Maps from the upcoming expansion, End of Dragons™, are not available for beta testing.
The beta character slots are only accessible during an active beta event, and they will be deleted between Elite Specialization Beta Events.
In this beta event, the following three new profession elite specializations are available for play:
- Willbenders are protectors of the Canthan throne and fated guardians to the Weh no Su. Their sword arms are as strong as their loyalty—unflinching and ruthless. They are known for a swift hand and unmatched swordplay, striking before their foe has time to react.
- The virtuoso forgoes traditional illusions in favor of psychic daggers, wielded by the sheer power of the mind. Unleash a volley of sharp blades, then outwit foes with a sharp mind.
- The harbinger is a gunslinger and alchemist, empowering their pistol and utilizing elixirs imbued with dark energies. But strength comes at a cost, and the harbinger must balance on a knife’s edge between power and corruption.
Beta Character Limitations
- Progress is not carried over from beta characters to live characters.
- Beta characters do not share normal account-wide inventory with non-beta characters, e.g., wallet, karma, shared inventory slots, and bank access.
- Beta characters cannot access the trading post.
- Beta characters cannot mail gold or items.
- Beta characters have access to a copy of your account’s Legendary Armory. Legendary items newly added to your Legendary Armory while a beta event is in progress will not be usable by beta characters during that beta event.
- The Birthday Vendor in Lion’s Arch has relocated to Hooligan’s Route and has begun offering previously unlocked birthday gifts as part of her inventory.
- Fixed a bug with food effects that grant a boon or bonus on killing enemies that could cause the effect to fail to activate in certain content types or locations.
- Fixed a bug with weapon sigils that grant a boon or bonus on killing enemies that could cause the effect to fail to activate in certain content types or locations.
- Superior Rune of Vampirism: Fixed a bug that could cause the healing from the 6-piece rune bonus to fail to activate when killing enemies in certain content types or locations.
- Superior Rune of the Afflicted: Fixed a bug that could cause the death nova from the 6-piece rune bonus to fail to activate when killing enemies in certain content types or locations.
Combo Fields and Finisher Skills
- Combo fields have received updated, higher quality visual effects. Rectangular combo fields do not yet have updated visuals, but they will be updated to match in a future update.
- Combo finishers will now prioritize using your own combo fields before those created by other players, where available.
- The icon border for skills that are combo finishers will now be highlighted while you are standing within a combo field.
- Projectile Finisher—Water Field: The radius around the struck enemy in which allies gain regeneration has been increased from 100 to 180.
- Projectile Finisher—Light Field: The radius around the struck enemy in which allies are cleansed of a condition has been increased from 100 to 180.
Boons and Conditions
In this update, we’re making adjustments to the confusion condition in PvE. Currently, it’s not strongly relevant in most gameplay, as few enemies attack rapidly enough for it to be a significant damage source. However, it’s also exceedingly powerful on a few specific boss fights in raids and elsewhere, which happen to have attack patterns that trigger confusion often. This has been a problem to balance around; it’s not much fun if being very good in specific raid fights means that confusion-heavy specializations like mirage aren’t up to par elsewhere.
To address this, we’re partially normalizing the confusion condition by making the damage-over-time component of confusion in PvE gameplay scale with the condition damage stat, making it overall more useful for general open-world and mission play. Each stack of confusion will be exactly half as powerful as a stack of the bleed condition. At the same time, we’re halving the trigger damage dealt when an enemy activates a skill. Overall, these changes mean that confusion will be a more reliable source of damage during play for professions that make regular use of it, and they reduce the degree to which it is split in functionality between PvE and PvP.
- Confusion: In PvE only, the damage over time caused by each stack of confusion has been increased from a flat 10 (at level 80) to 11+0.03 per point of condition damage. Damage dealt to all targets when they activate a skill has been reduced by 50%, matching the current damage in PvP and WvW game modes.
Weaver has impressive damage potential in PvE, but as many weaver mains have noted, it’s often reliant on assistance from other players to maintain the necessary weakness condition on their targets, and their fragility leaves little room for mistakes in play. With this update, we’re making two PvE-specific changes: improving the weaver’s ability to upkeep weakness on their targets via Superior Elements, and increasing the weaver’s personal sustainability by increasing the amount of barrier granted by Elemental Refreshment.
- Superior Elements: Increased the duration of applied weakness from 3 seconds to 5 seconds in PvE only.
- Elemental Refreshment: The total amount of barrier granted by this trait and the increase per point of healing power have been increased by 20% in PvE only.
We’re pleased with how scrapper’s build options have expanded recently. Now that the dust has settled a bit, it’s time for some more boons! With this update, we’re adding extra concentration to the quickness scrapper builds to improve their flexibility and quickness uptime while retaining more damage, and we’re providing a larger direct-damage enhancement to the dedicated power builds in the trait Applied Force.
- Kinetic Accelerators: This trait now additionally increases your concentration by 10% of your power.
- Applied Force: Bonus power per stack of might has been increased from 10 to 15. Might now provides reduced condition damage by the same amount. (Result: +45 Power, +15 Condition Damage per Stack of Might)
- Players can now use the mount key while in Photon Forge. Doing so will automatically deactivate Photon Forge.
- Mounting will no longer reset Photon Forge’s heat level to 0.
- Changing specializations away from and then back to holosmith will retain your former Photon Forge heat level.
With scourge getting toned down in PvP, we’re also taking a look at protection holosmith builds. Elixir Gun and Mortar Kit have been staples in tank-like engineer builds for a long time and are both things that we’re keeping an eye on, but we want to see the impact of shaving down a few holosmith-specific elements (as well as Over Shield) before touching anything else.
- Heat Therapy: Reduced base heal per stack from 39 to 30 in PvP only.
- Hard Light Arena: Increased cooldown from 50 seconds to 60 seconds in PvP only.
- Spectrum Shield: Reduced incoming damage reduction from 50% to 33% in PvP only.
- Over Shield: Reduced protection duration from 3 seconds to 2 seconds in PvP only.
- “Retreat!”: Guardians never retreat, so this shout skill has been renamed “Advance!” The voice acting has been updated appropriately to say either “Advance!” or “Charge!” at random, for a little variety.
- Renewed Justice: Fixed a bug that could cause this trait to fail to activate when killing enemies in certain content types or locations.
- Fixed a bug in which players could rarely become stuck in a tome with 0 pages remaining, causing players to need to reactivate the tome or use the weapon-swap key to exit. Now, in the rare cases where this occurs, attempting to use any tome-page skill will exit the tome, rather than failing to do anything.
- Unrelenting Criticism: Fixed a tooltip display bug that caused the PvP duration of bleed to also display in the tooltip in PvE, showing two different bleed durations. The effect of this trait is unchanged.
- Illusion of Life: Fixed a bug that could cause affected allies to fail to be fully revived when killing enemies in certain content types or locations.
- Medic’s Feedback: Reduced revive pulse from 5% to 1% in PvP and WvW.
- Death Shroud: Players may now use the mount key while in Death Shroud. Doing so will automatically deactivate Death Shroud.
- Furious Demise: Fixed a bug that caused precision granted by this trait to not be used for bonus condition damage by the next minor curses trait, Target the Weak.
- Target the Weak: The description of this trait has been corrected to include that it also increases the necromancer’s condition damage by a percentage of their precision.
- Lingering Curses: The bonus condition damage granted by this trait now applies with any weapon, not only scepter.
- Death Nova: Fixed a bug that could cause this trait to fail to properly summon a jagged horror when killing enemies in certain content types or locations.
- Soul Comprehension: Fixed a bug that could cause this trait to fail to properly grant a stack of carapace when killing enemies in certain content types or locations.
- Flesh of the Master: Reduced minion health bonus from 25% to 15% in PvP only.
- Dhuumfire: Fixed a bug that could cause this trait to activate multiple times without triggering its internal cooldown when used with scourge specialization skills.
- Dread: Fixed a bug that could cause this trait to fail to properly reduce the cooldown on shroud skill 3 when killing enemies in certain content types or locations.
- Reaper Shroud: Players can now use the mount key while in Reaper Shroud. Doing so will automatically deactivate Reaper Shroud.
As the community has observed, scourge has quickly become dominant in many game modes, from PvP to PvE. In PvE, the barrier granted by damage-specialized scourges to nearby allies as part of their normal damage rotation has caused scourge to provide overwhelming support even while traited and geared as a pure DPS build. We would like a clearer distinction between scourges’ support and damage builds. To this end, we’re making a change to the scourge’s healing skill, Sand Flare, so that it only grants barrier to the caster by default. The first-tier support trait, Abrasive Grit, was previously very underwhelming, especially when compared against its chief competitor in that tier, Fell Beacon. Abrasive Grit will now cause Sand Flare to affect nearby allies, restoring it to its previous target cap. With these changes, we’re shifting some of the scourge’s passive barrier-granting ability off of the damage-specialized scourge build and on to builds that have specifically chosen to trait for support.
- Sand Flare: Barrier granted by this skill now only affects the caster by default.
- Abrasive Grit: This trait has been reworked to the following: Sand Flare now also grants barrier to nearby allies. Granting an ally barrier removes conditions afflicting them.
- Demonic Lore: Fixed a bug that caused the internal cooldown of this trait to not occur under certain circumstances.
- Herald of Sorrow: This trait now renames the skill Desert Shroud to Sandstorm Shroud instead of to Harbinger Shroud. The effects of this skill are unchanged.
On the PvP side of things, we’re making some additional changes to bring scourge down. Feed from Corruption is a trait that we’ve been looking at for a while, and given the continued performance of scourge, it’s something we wanted to make sure to touch in this round of changes. For this update, we’re primarily targeting the defensive boons as we look to address some of the scourge’s overall bulk, but we also wanted to tone down the might generation that this trait could potentially create. We’re also shaving down some of the scourge’s barrier applications and Nefarious Favor, with the overall goal of making the scourge just a bit more killable.
- Sand Cascade: Reduced base barrier from 2,428 to 1,859 in PvP only.
- Desert Shroud: Reduced base barrier from 5,016 to 4,013 in PvP only.
- Desert Empowerment: Reduced base barrier from 966 to 773 in PvP only.
- Sandstorm Shroud: Reduced initial base barrier from 5,016 to 4,013 in PvP only. Reduced final base barrier from 1,684 to 1,327 in PvP only.
- Feed from Corruption: The following boon applications from this trait have been adjusted in PvP only:
- Might: Reduced stacks from 3 to 1.
- Protection: Reduced duration from 4 seconds to 2 seconds.
- Resolution: Reduced duration from 4 seconds to 2 seconds.
- Regeneration: Reduced duration from 8 seconds to 4 seconds.
- Stability: Reduced from 2 stacks for 5 seconds to 1 stack for 3 seconds.
- Vigor: Reduced duration from 6 seconds to 3 seconds.
- Nefarious Favor: Reduced the number of conditions converted to boons from 2 to 1 in PvP only.
- Fixed a bug in which a stowed pet would be unstowed when entering or leaving water.
- Fixed a bug in which the pet would be stowed after mounting a skimmer on water and then dismounting on land.
- Fixed a bug in which the pet would be stowed when mounting a flying mount after gliding.
- Maul: Fixed a bug in which this skill would go on full cooldown when interrupted.
- Celestial Avatar: Players can now use the mount key while in Celestial Avatar. Doing so will automatically deactivate Celestial Avatar. Any remaining Astral Force is lost upon deactivating Celestial Avatar in this way.
- Fixed a bug in which swapping Build Templates could leave players merged with a pet not in their current build. Swapping between soulbeast Build Templates while merged with a pet will now unmerge your pet, and then automatically remerge after the template swap completes.
- Fixed a bug in which swapping Build Templates could leave players merged with a pet even when they no longer have the soulbeast specialization slotted.
- One Wolf Pack: Fixed a bug that caused damaging strikes from this skill to fail to occur on certain large bosses, such as Tequatl the Sunless.
- Beastmode: On entering or exiting water, if players were previously merged with their pet, they will now automatically remerge after transitioning to water or land.
- Soulcleave’s Summit: Energy upkeep cost has been reduced from 8 to 6.
- Sevenshot: Torment duration per hit has been reduced from 7 seconds to 6 seconds.
- Vengeance: Fixed a bug that could cause players to fail to fully rally when killing enemies in certain content types or locations.
BLACK LION TRADING COMPANY GEM STORE
New Items and Promotions
- In honor of Guild Wars 2‘s 9th anniversary, two Heroic Boosters are available for FREE. Collect them from the Black Lion Trading Company Gem Store for a limited time.
- For a limited time, a new set of Magical weapons is available from Black Lion Weapons Specialists for 1 Black Lion Claim Ticket each. Keys are available in the Utility category of the Gem Store for 125 gems each.
- New skins have been added to the Guaranteed Wardrobe Unlock, Guaranteed Armor Unlock, and Guaranteed Weapon Unlock.
- The new Magical Appearance Package is available in the Style category of the Gem Store for 2,000 gems.
- The new Magical Outfit is available in the Style category of the Gem Store for 700 gems.
- The new Cute Angel Wings Backpack and Glider Combo is available in the Style category of the Gem Store for 700 gems.
- For a limited time, the Home Instance Node Pack is available on sale in the Upgrades category of the Gem Store for 2,800 gems, a savings of 30%.
- The new 9th Anniversary Supply Drop Requisition is available in the Utility category of the Gem Store for a discounted price of 2,400 gems. To celebrate Guild Wars 2‘s 9th anniversary, using this item enrolls your account to receive four weekly supply drops between now and early September.
- Here’s what each 9th Anniversary Supply Drop will contain:
- Week of August 17:
- 5 Black Lion Chest Keys
- 1 Golden Black Lion Chest Key
- 2 Guaranteed Wardrobe Unlocks
- 1 Black Lion Claim Ticket
- Week of August 24:
- 1 Black Lion Backpack and Glider Voucher
- 1 Black Lion Weapon Voucher
- 2 Black Lion Miniature Claim Tickets
- Week of August 31:
- 1 Deep Wilds Mount Select License (NEW)
- Choice of one of the following:
- Mistborn Mount Select License
- Curious Creatures Mount Select License
- Bizarre Beasts Mount Select License
- Lost Era Mount Select License
- Deep Wilds Mount Adoption License
- One of each of the following:
- Mini Green Raptor Hatchling
- Mini Brown Springer Kit
- Mini Yellow Jackal Pup
- Mini Red Griffon Hatchling
- Mini Blue Skimmer Pup
- Mini Red Shiba Inu
- Week of September 7:
- 1 Black Lion Outfit Voucher
- 1 Black Lion Chair Voucher (New)
- One Communal Boost Bonfire and two Heroic Boosters in a container
- Each week the discount on the 9th Anniversary Supply Drop decreases, so the earlier the purchase, the lower the price.
- Week of August 17: 2,400 gems (20% discount)
- Week of August 24: 2,550 gems (15% discount)
- Week of August 31: 2,700 gems (10% discount)
- Week of September 7: 3,000 gems
- Note: Purchases made after week one will receive the supply drops from the previous weeks. Act early for the best discount and earliest possible delivery of your supply drops.
- Week of August 17:
- Here’s what each 9th Anniversary Supply Drop will contain:
Black Lion Chest
- The Black Lion Chest has been updated to the Vermilion Radiance Chest and can be previewed for a full list of its contents.
- A new Mini Red Shiba Inu has been added as the guaranteed item for the duration of the Vermilion Radiance Chest.
- The new Vermilion Bow Package is available as an uncommon drop for the duration of this chest.
- The Archdemon Wings Backpack and Glider Combo remains as an uncommon drop for the duration of this chest.
- The Bioluminescent and Dreamthistle Weapon Collections are available as uncommon and rare drops respectively for the duration of this chest.
- Unused versions of the Glyph of Bounty and Glyph of the Scavenger are available as rare drops for the duration of this chest.
- The items available in exchange for Black Lion Statuettes have been updated. Black Lion Statuettes are redeemable by using the statuette itself or by redeeming one at any of the Black Lion Chest Merchants located in every major city.
- The exclusive Mystic Smoking Pipe Warhorn Skin, Starlight Wings Backpack and Glider Combo, Seven Reapers Grasps Skin, Feathers of the Zephyr Package, and Exalted Gloves are currently available.
- The two bonus collections have been updated to a selection of helm skins and miniatures.
- Fixed a bug in which one of the idle animations on the Shimmerwing Skyscale Skin was playing fire-breath visual effects when it shouldn’t.
Source: Guild Wars 2 Official Forums