Next in our focus on TERA's PvP feature is the Guild vs Guild (or GvG) system.
There's no denying, that TERA aims to create as much community interaction into their game as possible. Among those features one could easily include the GvG system in TERA, so let us see, what it really is all about.
In my previous article about the "Outlaw System", I described on how individuals or even groups could flag themselves and try and kill their targets. The drawback with this feature is, that one is becoming a big target themselves.
Now with the GvG system, a Guild can declare war on another Guild. In order to do that, the Guild Leader buys a certain scroll from an NPC which costs 30.000 gold and once used, it opens a window, where the Guild Leader can type the name of the Guild they want to declare war on. Once at war with a guild, the guild players names will appear in purple for the general population and in red with a tag above the head for the enemy guild and vice versa. Enemy players are also visible on the minimap.
The total amount of Guilds with which a Guild can be at war with at the same time is four. If a Guild thinks that they don't want to fight a specific war with another guild, they can go to the same NPC and buy another scroll for 3000 gold, which functions as a surrender and the guild loses the war.
The above is a basic description of what the GvG system is about, but there's something that needs more analysis on, that being the purpose of the feature.
The GvG system as an official way to bypass the "Outlaw system". When in war, guild members are alerted and can fight an enemy right away without having to fear that someone else might interfere in battle.
Fighting aside, this is also all it does, which is somewhat disappointing. There's several improvements that should be made to it, for it to become an actual community tool.
First of all, the four slots that are available to declare war on an enemy Guild, also fill up when the enemy declares war on you. It can actually happen that a Guild won't have the chance to declare war upon anybody, for the simple fact that they got spammed with wars. This can cause a lot of frustration since it ruins planned Guild politics. An increase in available slots would be somewhat of a relief, it would be better to make it so, that there's two different tabs. One including a total of tabs (could be four) to declare war on guilds and the other tab to be there to include Guilds that declared war on said Guild.
This would allow for a more complex yet more efficient community tool to live their passion and manifest their plans.
I would also suggest them increasing the cost of declaring war but also the cost of dropping out. In spite of it being encouraging at the moment (Closed Beta Tests), it removes somewhat the "magic" of it representing a war. With the increase in cost it would simulate the effort a Guild undergoes as to gather the resources to prepare for war and not just gathering some pocket change.
Adding the requirement that a Guild needs to obtain a "Casus Belli" would be really interesting too. It would not only work as a protective barrier, keeping others from spamming wars on others, but also encourage more fights and interaction among players. For a Guild, in order to declare war, it would require to gather an amount of points by either attacking and killing (via the outlaw system) players of a specific guild or be killed by them. The kill/killed points, would count together towards obtaining the Casus Belli.
Second, there is no alliance system implemented. A guild can have as many as three hundred members but this is not the point. Having a well functioning alliance system, would allow for more interaction and spice up things not only in open world PvP but serve as a good tool for the political system in TERA.
In relation to that, it would be not difficult to add some kind of official ingame recognition that two Guilds are befriended and as an extension, there could be alliance specific quests, which give points that are required to keep the alliance intact.
Going even further, there should be a feature which would allow allied guilds to join a war against an enemy Guild which is at war with an ally. This would mean that the powers within the Community wouldn't be Guild-centered but revolving around the Alliances, but isn't it always great to see big sections of a community work together ?
Obviously the GvG is an open world PvP feature and judging on how the game is being built, there's no hints at the moment implying that it is going to be a main feature. Nonetheless it exists ingame and it can be the source for a lot of fun both in PvP and PvE servers.
But with a few tweaks here and there and adding some nice touches to it, it would allow the game to stand out and attract the attention of those that are bored with what has now become mainstream, running Battlegrounds.