The developers of GW2 have a few words and a picture work on a new extension is confirmed – and people freak out. There are several reasons for this. Above all, an expansion like Heart of Thorns or Path of Fire is of course always a fancy thing, because it promises a mountain of new content in one fell swoop. HoT brought gliders, raids and specializations, while since PoF we have been allowed to travel through Tyria on mounts. In this respect, some people are already rattling their brains for innovations that we could get in a third expansion.
Third expansion for Guild Wars 2 calms worried players
On top of that, of course, working on an expansion fights a little fear of a "maintenance mode": some have after layoffs, felt too much Gemstore content and living world instead of expansion fears that those responsible at Arenanet will only put the bare minimum into play. The – albeit early and poorly informed – confirmation that the developers are also working on a third great adventure is an important step and appears to be part of the "new" Arenanet, which is based on more transparency, which is also what making-of- Insights and small roadmaps.
<img src = "https://www.buffed.de/screenshots/1020x/2020/03/GW2_Expansion_Shing_Jea_Cantha_Konzeptkunst_Arenanet-buffed.jpg" alt = "Cantha in GW2: The curved pagoda roofs, the cherry blossom petals and the pavilion with red columns are reminiscent to the Chinese summer palace.“/>
Veterans from GW1 in particular appreciate this conceptual image. Because the cherry blossom trees, Far Eastern pagodas with red columns and the mighty bell can only mean one thing: Cantha! A word that promises a lot. Okay, a little history lesson:
Cantha is next to Tyria and Elona one of the three continents of the Guild Wars world. Fans of martial arts, anime, samurai and Chinese myths felt right at home in the areas inspired by Asia. The acrobatic assassins and the spiritual ritualists were added as additional classes. The world itself is still an absolute highlight of Arenanet's creativity for many players today: the cry of death of the murderer Shiro Tagachi unleashed a curse that froze the sea to jade and the forest to stone.
The respective groups Kurzick (in the Echowald) and Luxon (in the Jade Sea) offered a faction conflict between players in Guild Wars for the first time. Because in the context of the story we had to choose a group for the time being, experienced a completely different side of the world. We were also able to conquer areas on behalf of Kurzick or Luxon. Hence the appropriate name of this extension: Guild Wars – Factions.
Guild Wars 2 (buy now for € 39.95) has rarely referred to the mystical continent. Human characters can choose Canthan ancestors as their origin and the thief class relies on some skills of the Assassins. In GW2 there should actually be a Canthan district in Götterfels, but this was deleted shortly before publication – some suspect that one did not want to upset Chinese people with a mix of Japan / China / Korea. We see the Jade Sea in fragments, because there is a boss fight against a Leviathan imprisoned in jade.
Cantha is most prominent in GW2 due to the Lunar New Year Festival, which traditionally comes from GW: Factions. Far Eastern delicacies, zodiac signs as a theme, fireworks etc. For this reason, players celebrate the possible return to Shing Jea, Kaineng, Echowald and Jademeer. But it is questionable how much we will still recognize …
In GW2 250 years have also passed in Cantha
The Cantha continent has seen major changes after the events of GW1. The new emperor Usoku finally united the territories in one "dragon empire". This change did not stop at the Vassalen states of the Kurzick and Luxon either – the powerful armies of Usokus defeated the two factions. With the help of the "Ministry of Purity" all rebels, sickly and non-people were forced to leave the country. These also include the bird-like Tengu, which populate the inaccessible "Dominion of the Winds" in GW2 near Löwenstein. As a result, Cantha withdrew into insolation, and contact with Elona and Tyria has practically ended since then, with the exception of some goods that find their way to Tyria.
When the sunken kingdom of Orr reappeared from the sea floor and the hordes of the undead dragon Zhaitan terrorized the southern sea, the initially politically motivated isolation of Canthas became final: No ship could pass safely between Cantha and the rest of the world.
Even in GW1, events that took place years after Shiro Tagachi's death indicated that life was returning to the Jade Sea and the petrified Echo Forest. According to reports, waves should be observed beneath the frozen surface, while green buds in the Echo Forest heralded the beginning of new, living trees.
How the country looks now is an absolute mystery – but the concept image promises that at least the monastery of Shing Jea (a file name on the official website revealed the content of the image) still looks similarly beautiful, probably even more beautiful than then.
Do you share the enthusiasm? Do you also have nostalgic memories of Cantha? Were you Luxon or Kurzick? Have you never played GW1 but are you looking forward to an Asia setting? Write to us in the comments!
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