Welcome To Hardstuck v2!
It’s been a long road to get here but our website has finally arrived – mostly. It’s been a gargantuan effort and I’m pretty sure Czokalapik and Sognus don’t even remember what outside looks like because of how many hours they have been putting in! We hope you will enjoy the content and features the team has been working hard on over the past months. We’ve taken massive strides in our organization and are confident we’ll be able to continue to deliver even more quality content and community events going forward into 2022! What’s described here is just what we have confirmed for now because we want to make sure that we don’t make plans that can’t be followed through with. There are several projects in the works that although they are very likely to happen, are not at a stage where we would consider them a confirmed guarantee, these projects are discussed at the end of this post!
Introductions aside, let’s take a look at what we have in store for the year ahead;
The primary focus for Hardstuck going forwards is going to be growing the scenes of every game mode and so we’ll be running events that aim to make getting engaged with Guild Wars 2 a fun, social and exciting community experience! Right now is the beginning of that and we want to run a whole bunch of experimental events to see what works and what doesn’t!
Here’s what we are going to run:
A big obstacle to getting into competitive play is the barrier to entry in building a team and then finding good quality matches for your team to practice. To remedy this one of our massive brain developers (Rennorb) created a system that allows us to dynamically create draft tournaments through discord with incredibly minimal effort required from participants! The way it works is that we’ll announce a day and a time where a tournament will take place, when the tournament starts there will be a signup period where players sign up using a Guild Wars 2 API key and select what roles they can play. After the signup phase is over the bot will automatically build teams that have a sensible composition, this can be tweaked for any game mode, but the first test will be PvP. Teams will each have a private voice and text discord channel to communicate and will be asked to confirm that they are available to play. Naturally not everyone will show up so the system will automatically merge and rebuild teams as needed blending in any leftover players.
After everything is set the bracket will be generated and the tournament will begin! The victors will be handsomely rewarded and down the line, we’ll be looking to offer ‘Community Conqueror’ to the winners. The goal is to provide a regular monthly event that any aspiring player can enter with a low time investment to hone their skills, compete and have a realistic shot at winning! To further ensure competitive integrity and increase new player friendliness we’ll also be restricting the rating of players entering the tournament to 1600 or lower, we can change this at any time, and down the line, if this project does well we would look at refining this and also running fully open tournaments too!
The first test is happening this Tuesday the 26th so get on discord and get ready to blast!
Guild Wars 2 needs leaders! To remedy this problem we’ll be running the PvE Commander Challenge in May, this will be a week long event where we are challenging the player to lead as many squads as possible! The full details and rules of this challenge will be released shortly but the key idea is that each distinct squad activity will contribute to a ‘score’ and the commanders with the highest scores at the end of the week will receive fabulous prizes! We’ll also be providing resources on how to build squads, lead squads, and approach all areas of the game through this website, and to further demolish the barrier to entry Hardstuck will buy commander tags for players interested in getting into leading groups!
We hope that events like this one will start to build momentum in the community and give players the confidence to take the first step into taking charge of their destiny and helping other players along the way! We’ve already seen incredible success with our discord community facilitating a massive amount of in-game activities and allowing players to get into content easier and this will be the next step in turbocharging that! We also have plans to repeat this challenge and expand it to WvW and PvP in the future!
Hardstuck Conquest League & Masters of the Arena
High level competitive events are essential to community engagement and excitement around gaming! First on our list is going to be PvP, with a new expansion released the metagame is teeming with energy… or at least mechanists! To capitalize on that and carry the momentum forward into the future of PvP in Guild Wars 2 we’ll be running multiple Hardstuck Conquest Leagues through May and June, culminating in the ultimate contest; Masters of The Arena which will take place in July!
Full details and signups will be released very shortly here and in the Hardstuck Competitive Discord but these are the key dates:
Hardstuck Conquest League 3: May 21st & 22nd
Hardstuck Conquest League 4: June 18th & 19th
Masters Of The Arena Wildcard Qualifier: July 24th
Masters Of The Arena: July 29th, 30th & 31st (Note, we may try to streamline this to just Saturday and Sunday)
The format remains the same, Hardstuck Conquest League will have an Open Bracket for newer teams and an Invitational Bracket for veteran and elite teams. These two brackets ensure the events are approachable for new teams as they won’t be in the same competition as the ultimate veterans making the event the perfect step into competitive play for newer teams looking for a shot at glory! Placement in the invitational bracket will contribute to qualifying for Masters Of The Arena, with the top two teams from each region guaranteeing qualification. By popular request instead of using the July Monthly Automated Tournament as a wildcard qualifier, we’ll be running a final bonus qualifier on July 24th as the last chance to make it to the ultimate PvP competition! Something else worthy of note is that we’ll be compressing the Hardstuck Conquest Leagues down to one weekend and that means the Open Bracket will be day 1 and the Invitational Bracket will be day 2! We want to make sure that the competitive experience is as smooth and comfortable as possible for our players and making the event run faster will achieve that goal!
We want to create an experience worthy of the excitement in the community about the future of Guild Wars 2 and share that hype with players inside and outside the game! Get ready for the events because we’ve got some incredible things in store for you that will create the most viewer-friendly tournament in Guild Wars 2 history!
Stay tuned for details and start building your teams now because the signups for HCL3 are coming this week!
Strike Missions And The Race To World First
Nothing creates hype around PvE content more than the first ever kill! With the release of the first strike mission challenge mode, it’s clear ArenaNet wants to create content that will take a while to take down even for the most powerful players in the game. Because of this, we’re looking to create a race to world first event around the final two strike mission challenge modes where we’ll spectate top guilds developing their strategies and racing to claim the first clear of the content!
We hope to both create a massive surge of hype around the fantastic content ArenaNet is producing and also encourage as many top players to compete as possible with the help of some epic prizing and of course the recognition of dominating the hardest content in the game before anyone else! Maintaining top level engagement in the hardcore PvE scene has always been a near impossible task in Guild Wars 2 because content doesn’t release very quickly, but with ArenaNet’s new approach with strike missions, we think this can change. Especially if it can be made competitive through World First races and other such events!
A Need For Speed
It’s been a long time coming but Hardstuck is finally entering the domain of the Rollerbeetles! We’re proud to announce we’ll be assisting in producing the 2022 Beetle Racing World Championship towards the end of the year in partnership with multiple other communities. To prepare for this and refine production value we’ll be running a few smaller warmup events that will be aimed at everyone, from players who have never raced before up to the fastest things to move across the lands of Tyria!
The first of these events will be hosted in the Hardstuck Guild Hall within 2 weeks, a few more details need to be worked out before confirmation but as always expect spectacular prizing worthy of the skill of the best racers in the game!
And Some Other Things
You might have noticed that not every game mode has been mentioned here, this is because Hardstuck is still very much in its early stages and there is a huge amount of setup to do and technology and systems to develop! This means that we are going to be slowly ramping up our activities over time. A realistic timescale is that we hope to be running regular events for all skill levels a year from now, consistency, variety, and barrier to entry are key here and that’s where we’ve failed to deliver in the past. Needless to say, we don’t want to make that mistake again and we’re taking our time with it. We’ve seen incredible results with our operations on discord, in the game, and in the development of this website which is nearly complete!
The important thing here is that we are not going to be replacing events with other new ones and just moving on never repeating them, we’ll be layering on additional event types over time that will remain consistent driving forces in the community until the servers shut down!
Here’s what we’ll be looking to get started after the first cycle of PvP events:
Hardstuck Raiding Party
A raid speedrunning tournament with an open bracket and invitational bracket just like HCL, we need to gauge interest on this though and determine if it’s the correct approach to creating competition in endgame PvE
Elitist Raiding Party But It’s Going To Be Renamed
Elitist Raiding Party 3 is probably the most legendary community event of all time in Guild Wars 2 and we want to bring it back, pitting the best guilds in the game against each other with a brutally punishing ruleset that only the best players in the game could hope to conquer! We have a good idea of what the tournament will look like but it’s not far enough along in development to have a date attached to it yet, particularly as again tryhard PvE guilds are an endangered species!
Captains League Events
We want to build up the relationship between the top scene and the community. It’s paramount that the high level players are actively contributing to the community and creating an environment where newer players have the opportunity to learn. If there is no respect between player groups or there is a perception that top players don’t take the game seriously then why should anyone! A good way to remedy this is to just have players interact with each; separation between different player groups is how such perceptions build and barriers form making content less approachable and the scene seems impossible to enter. It also just makes the game far less exciting too, when communities come together to celebrate their favorite teams going up against each other the camaraderie takes the whole thing to the next level!
Our solution to this is to try out a few Captains League style events where teams of players will be coached and led by top players! We’re not sure exactly what that will end up looking like but it sounds like it could be entertaining to see the best players in the game bantering with each other and competing to make their team of new players the ultimate weapon!
The barrier to entry and accessibility are two key concepts that we want to focus on with all of our plans and what better place to encourage players to push themselves than in ranked PvP where you can just press a button to get in on the action! This contest would essentially reward players with gold for every rating point gained over a season. We don’t know if it would really do anything but we’ll probably try it at some point!
Even ArenaNet are acknowledging that GvG exists these days so we better do so as well, there are no concrete plans right now but it’s something that we 100% want to do. The main obstacle is figuring out how to make it into a viewable experience but after that has been sorted out expect to see some epic mists battles from Hardstuck!
Fractals and Dungeons
Funnily enough, 5 player content still exists in Guild Wars 2 and makes from some riveting gameplay that will doubtlessly inspire you to try to farm half as hard as the fastest groups! We’re currently working on finding rulesets that players are happy with and will be exciting to watch, and when we do we’re keen to experiment with some ideas to create some hype in these game modes!
Thanks for reading, we hope you are just as excited by our plans as we are!
Let us know what you think and please feel free to ask the team on discord any questions that you might have.
– The Hardstuck Team