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Fansite Friday #21
World Preview Event Special Edition

This weeks Fansite Friday features questions culled from our many Guild Wars fansites. Oh, and answers, too! ;)

Why did you open the World Preview Event early?

We opened early for a couple of reasons. First of all, its cool to do stuff like this, to exceed expectations whenever we can. Secondly, we promised three days of gaming during the World Preview Event. We knew this was going to be a very popular event, and by starting early, we were able to address any connectivity issues right away, during the bonus period, so that everything was running smoothly by the official start time of Friday morning.

We understand there have been some slowness in downloads. Whats up with that?

The slowness in the downloads last night was a result of having more people then we ever imagined come on board in very quick order. We had put a large quantity of servers in place to accommodate the players; we then doubled that anticipated quantity to cover even more. But in the end, we are surprised by the number of gamers who joined the event, so we quickly brought on more servers to accommodate the load.

On this subject, though, I have to say that a number of problem reports are related to the gamers computer. Honestly, were not passing the buck when I say this. There are an awful lot of people out there whose computers dont meet the minimum specifications, who are using drivers several generations old, who havent updated DirectX since they bought their computers, etc. I was hanging out in Lions Arch last night and I heard someone grousing about how the game wasnt running properly. But when asked for computer specs, the player answer with a list of hardware from about 1842! Well, ok, maybe not that long ago. ;) But still, as is the case with the letters and forums posts, the video card was at least half a dozen generations back. The system specs for Guild Wars are very manageable; in fact, given what you see on the screen, theyre downright amazing!

A special bonus of these conversations is that we are learning about a lot of diverse configurations, and we are making changes to support them where possible.

How many people do you have in the game?

It was pretty amazing to see the people flood in when we opened. We have 5,000 gamers online in less than 20 minutes, and that was a full day prior to the official launch! I have to suspect there were an awful lot of people clicking Enter over and over again to see if, just by chance, they managed to join Guild Wars. As to numbers, I know that last night there were over 40,000 online at the same time.

Is the event a success?

Oh, heavens, yes! :)