I hate collection quests, but I do have a quest to grab the collector's edition of Guild Wars 2 when it comes out. In fact I've sworn to buy everything that says Guild Wars 2 on it, including magazines with a few pages of Guild Wars 2 content. Those of us who often pre-order games and buy collector's editions of games have a pretty good idea of what to expect. The usual. I mean personally, I think the collector's edition of any game is usually only unique from the regular box variant. Today I want to share some of my ideas for a unique collector's edition from ArenaNet.
First let's cover what you might receive for simply the act of pre-ordering Guild Wars 2. Access to beta weekends. Remember those from Guild Wars 1? That was truly a magical time 6 years ago. ArenaNet was quite generous with the content as far as I remember. Reaching level 20 (the level cap) within 3 days felt like quite a feat. Back then, Prophecies (the first chapter in Guild Wars as we know it now) was pretty damn hard. It was important to communicate with party members to get missions done. Guild Wars 2 isn't as mission based, but the way its been designed is definitely going to make you look at other players and compel you to say, "Hey! Lets stick together!". I can see that happening at every dynamic event, which it a lot more frequent than going from mission to mission in Guild Wars 1.
Perhaps there will also be early access to split the initial login rush, but that is as far as pre-ordering Guild Wars 2 should go in my opinion. Some are suggesting there should be a miniature pet given, but I've always seen those as birthday gifts. They come as pleasant surprises and the pet you receive is random. If a miniature pet were to come with the pre-order, it would have to be fair for all, therefore the same pet for everyone. I mean, it wouldn't be fair if some players randomly received a highly sought after pet to sell early on. Additionally, if everyone had the same miniature, it would be a sore sight to see on day one of Guild Wars 2.
So what about that collector's edition? Obviously we'll need a shiny CD of Guild Wars 2 music for sure. Please put in one or two of Guild Wars 1's best scores as bonus too! I don't know anyone that doesn't enjoy Jeremy Soule's music. Meanwhile, if I invested in the collector's edition, an additional character slot would be very nice gesture! Many people would like to see an art book even though ArenaNet has already released one. If I wanted an art book, then it had better be a nice book! However, I don't want to see the book I already paid good money for to become something of less value in any way. If there was enough new art to put a second art book into the Penny Arcade Store, then I'm all for it! Otherwise, I've got another idea in mind.
I want the most beautiful instruction booklet ever made. I've always been a fan of colourful video game instructions. I would even take them with me to the washroom because obviously I'm not sleeping for the next 48 hours following the game's release. Is that too much information for one article? Think of it as a booklet breed from a manual and an art book. More or less every other page of this instruction booklet should display an art piece and a bit of caption to explain what you are looking at. The original art book was lacking this, but it would work here without the booklet coming off as promotion. Not only are you absorbing the little gameplay tips, but the booklet will also immerse you into the Guild Wars 2 world. This would help me greatly because I still feel the need to get a crash course in the latest lore after reading the ArenaNet blog.
Give us a poster of Lion's Arch with a view stretching from the sea up to the sky. I choose Lion's Arch because it said to be where all the races first come together. While one poster cannot capture the beauty of all the races, I believe Lion's Arch would symbolize the diversity of Guild Wars 2's universe in terms of races and environmental scope. Some other folks want a map, but can't you easily see that in-game? Is it not cooler to view the new Lion's Arch from an angle you can't normally see? You can disagree with my choice, but there is one other thing I think we may agree on. This is where I get really demanding. I think posters in game boxes have always been done wrong. Unless Guild Wars 2 was packaged in a long tube, I don't want a folded poster. Give us a poster cut into thin cardboard squares. We'll piece it back together on our wall with tape on the back and not worry about paper curling or seeing paper creases. Naturally, by asking for this, I am saying I want a significantly large image spread across my wall!
Lastly, we need a plastic object to complete this collector's edition. Night vision goggles and a dragon figure have been done. I do not want another USB flash drive modeled after Logan Thackeray's war-hammer either. Jokes aside, I honestly have no idea what I would like to see. It's hard to please everyone that's for sure. How about an authenticator? That doesn't really fit in with this category does it? If you're unfamiliar with authenticators for MMORPGs, it is a device which provides a unique key each time you want to log in to your account. It adds an extra layer of security, but it can also be a hassle if it doesn't function optimally, or if you lose it. An authenticator for logging into the game is unlikely to happen given that Guild Wars 2 doesn't have a monthly subscription fee, but if it did it could be modelled after something. Perhaps the authenticator can be modeled after an aetheric energy modulator (used to tune an Asuran gate). Not that I have any idea what that looks like, though it seems fitting for logging into Guild Wars 2. At least it isn't another awkwardly shaped USB flash drive! Whatever you decide ArenaNet, remember I still want to invite friends over to show them your game.
You may have realized by now that I have not mentioned anything about virtual costumes or bonus weapons. I suppose I'm not a fan, though I couldn't care less whether or not such items are included. The more the merrier of course! I can always use a new mouse pad or a bookmark just for the Guild Wars novels. It's not so much about getting something cool related to Guild Wars 2, as it is for me to show my unwavering support to ArenaNet. In fact, I'll probably be buying one collector's edition and another regular copy via digital download when that is available. Like I said earlier, I've sworn to buy one of everything with Guild Wars 2 on it! Besides, I just know I will need all the character slots and inventory I can get. I'm sure that I'll be happy with whatever comes packaged in the collector's edition. Why did I even bother to write all of this? Guild Wars 2 has already exceeded my expectations. Alas, I've convinced myself to leave these collector's ideas for the experts to decide.
Written by @peter_chan
Much thanks to @Loremasterkaae for proof reading.
[Update] @bookahnerk tells me that cloths can be pretty detailed too. Perhaps not to the level of detail I first imagined to see Lion's Arch in, but I'd be cool with a big painterly image!